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Sample records for metacommunity dynamics decline

  1. Models for inference in dynamic metacommunity systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dorazio, Robert M.; Kery, Marc; Royle, J. Andrew; Plattner, Matthias

    2010-01-01

    A variety of processes are thought to be involved in the formation and dynamics of species assemblages. For example, various metacommunity theories are based on differences in the relative contributions of dispersal of species among local communities and interactions of species within local communities. Interestingly, metacommunity theories continue to be advanced without much empirical validation. Part of the problem is that statistical models used to analyze typical survey data either fail to specify ecological processes with sufficient complexity or they fail to account for errors in detection of species during sampling. In this paper, we describe a statistical modeling framework for the analysis of metacommunity dynamics that is based on the idea of adopting a unified approach, multispecies occupancy modeling, for computing inferences about individual species, local communities of species, or the entire metacommunity of species. This approach accounts for errors in detection of species during sampling and also allows different metacommunity paradigms to be specified in terms of species- and location-specific probabilities of occurrence, extinction, and colonization: all of which are estimable. In addition, this approach can be used to address inference problems that arise in conservation ecology, such as predicting temporal and spatial changes in biodiversity for use in making conservation decisions. To illustrate, we estimate changes in species composition associated with the species-specific phenologies of flight patterns of butterflies in Switzerland for the purpose of estimating regional differences in biodiversity.

  2. Models for inference in dynamic metacommunity systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dorazio, R.M.; Kery, M.; Royle, J. Andrew; Plattner, M.

    2010-01-01

    A variety of processes are thought to be involved in the formation and dynamics of species assemblages. For example, various metacommunity theories are based on differences in the relative contributions of dispersal of species among local communities and interactions of species within local communities. Interestingly, metacommunity theories continue to be advanced without much empirical validation. Part of the problem is that statistical models used to analyze typical survey data either fail to specify ecological processes with sufficient complexity or they fail to account for errors in detection of species during sampling. In this paper, we describe a statistical modeling framework for the analysis of metacommunity dynamics that is based on the idea of adopting a unified approach, multispecies occupancy modeling, for computing inferences about individual species, local communities of species, or the entire metacommunity of species. This approach accounts for errors in detection of species during sampling and also allows different metacommunity paradigms to be specified in terms of species-and location-specific probabilities of occurrence, extinction, and colonization: all of which are estimable. In addition, this approach can be used to address inference problems that arise in conservation ecology, such as predicting temporal and spatial changes in biodiversity for use in making conservation decisions. To illustrate, we estimate changes in species composition associated with the species-specific phenologies of flight patterns of butterflies in Switzerland for the purpose of estimating regional differences in biodiversity. ?? 2010 by the Ecological Society of America.

  3. Temporal dynamics of a local fish community are strongly affected by immigration from the surrounding metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Stoffels, Rick J; Clarke, Kenneth Robert; Linklater, Danielle S

    2015-01-01

    A 5-year time series of annual censuses was collected from a large floodplain lake to determine how dynamics of the local fish community were affected by changes in hydrological connectivity with the surrounding metacommunity. The lake was disconnected from the metacommunity for 1 year prior to our study and remained disconnected until 3 months before our third annual census, when a flood reconnected the lake to the metacommunity. We determined how changes in connectivity affected temporal dynamics of (1) local community composition and (2) the population composition, condition, and growth of catfish, to shed light on how immigration of other species might affect local population dynamics. Before reconnection, the community was likely shaped by interactions between the local environment and species traits. The reconnection caused significant immigration and change in community composition and correlated with a significant and abrupt decline in catfish condition, growth, and abundance; effects likely due to the immigration of a competitor with a similar trophic niche: carp. The community was slow to return to its preconnection state, which may be due to dispersal traits of the fishes, and a time-lag in the recovery of the local catfish population following transient intensification of species interactions. The dynamics observed were concordant with the species sorting and mass-effects perspectives of metacommunity theory. Floods cause episodic dispersal in floodplain fish metacommunities, and so, flood frequency determines the relative importance of regional and local processes. Local processes may be particularly important to certain species, but these species may need sufficient time between floods for population increase, before the next flood-induced dispersal episode brings competitors and predators that might cause population decline. Accordingly, species coexistence in these metacommunities may be facilitated by spatiotemporal storage effects, which may in

  4. Temporal dynamics of a local fish community are strongly affected by immigration from the surrounding metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Stoffels, Rick J; Clarke, Kenneth Robert; Linklater, Danielle S

    2015-01-01

    A 5-year time series of annual censuses was collected from a large floodplain lake to determine how dynamics of the local fish community were affected by changes in hydrological connectivity with the surrounding metacommunity. The lake was disconnected from the metacommunity for 1 year prior to our study and remained disconnected until 3 months before our third annual census, when a flood reconnected the lake to the metacommunity. We determined how changes in connectivity affected temporal dynamics of (1) local community composition and (2) the population composition, condition, and growth of catfish, to shed light on how immigration of other species might affect local population dynamics. Before reconnection, the community was likely shaped by interactions between the local environment and species traits. The reconnection caused significant immigration and change in community composition and correlated with a significant and abrupt decline in catfish condition, growth, and abundance; effects likely due to the immigration of a competitor with a similar trophic niche: carp. The community was slow to return to its preconnection state, which may be due to dispersal traits of the fishes, and a time-lag in the recovery of the local catfish population following transient intensification of species interactions. The dynamics observed were concordant with the species sorting and mass-effects perspectives of metacommunity theory. Floods cause episodic dispersal in floodplain fish metacommunities, and so, flood frequency determines the relative importance of regional and local processes. Local processes may be particularly important to certain species, but these species may need sufficient time between floods for population increase, before the next flood-induced dispersal episode brings competitors and predators that might cause population decline. Accordingly, species coexistence in these metacommunities may be facilitated by spatiotemporal storage effects, which may in

  5. Species Turnover through Time: Colonization and Extinction Dynamics across Metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Nuvoloni, Felipe Micali; Feres, Reinaldo José Fazzio; Gilbert, Benjamin

    2016-06-01

    Island biogeography and metacommunity theory often use equilibrium assumptions to predict local diversity, yet nonequilibrium dynamics are common in nature. In nonequilibrium communities, local diversity fluctuates through time as the relative importance of colonization and extinction change. Here, we test the prevalence and causes of nonequilibrium dynamics in metacommunities of mites associated with rubber trees distributed over large spatial (>1,000 km) and temporal (>30-60 generations) scales in Brazil. We measured colonization and extinction rates to test species turnover and nonequilibrium dynamics over a growing season. Mite metacommunities exhibited nonequilibrium dynamics for most months of the year, and these dynamics tracked climatic conditions. Monthly shifts in temperature of more than 1°C resulted in nonequilibrium dynamics, as did mean temperatures outside of two critical ranges. Nonequilibrium dynamics were caused by a change in colonization with temperature change and changes in both colonization and extinction with absolute temperature. Species turnover showed different trends; high relative humidity increased both colonization and extinction rates, increasing turnover but not nonequilibrium dynamics. Our study illustrates that testing nonequilibrium dynamics can provide new insights into the drivers of colonization, extinction, and diversity fluctuations in metacommunities.

  6. Constraints on food chain length arising from regional metacommunity dynamics.

    PubMed

    Calcagno, Vincent; Massol, François; Mouquet, Nicolas; Jarne, Philippe; David, Patrice

    2011-10-22

    Classical ecological theory has proposed several determinants of food chain length, but the role of metacommunity dynamics has not yet been fully considered. By modelling patchy predator-prey metacommunities with extinction-colonization dynamics, we identify two distinct constraints on food chain length. First, finite colonization rates limit predator occupancy to a subset of prey-occupied sites. Second, intrinsic extinction rates accumulate along trophic chains. We show how both processes concur to decrease maximal and average food chain length in metacommunities. This decrease is mitigated if predators track their prey during colonization (habitat selection) and can be reinforced by top-down control of prey vital rates (especially extinction). Moreover, top-down control of colonization and habitat selection can interact to produce a counterintuitive positive relationship between perturbation rate and food chain length. Our results show how novel limits to food chain length emerge in spatially structured communities. We discuss the connections between these constraints and the ones commonly discussed, and suggest ways to test for metacommunity effects in food webs.

  7. Constraints on food chain length arising from regional metacommunity dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Calcagno, Vincent; Massol, François; Mouquet, Nicolas; Jarne, Philippe; David, Patrice

    2011-01-01

    Classical ecological theory has proposed several determinants of food chain length, but the role of metacommunity dynamics has not yet been fully considered. By modelling patchy predator–prey metacommunities with extinction–colonization dynamics, we identify two distinct constraints on food chain length. First, finite colonization rates limit predator occupancy to a subset of prey-occupied sites. Second, intrinsic extinction rates accumulate along trophic chains. We show how both processes concur to decrease maximal and average food chain length in metacommunities. This decrease is mitigated if predators track their prey during colonization (habitat selection) and can be reinforced by top-down control of prey vital rates (especially extinction). Moreover, top-down control of colonization and habitat selection can interact to produce a counterintuitive positive relationship between perturbation rate and food chain length. Our results show how novel limits to food chain length emerge in spatially structured communities. We discuss the connections between these constraints and the ones commonly discussed, and suggest ways to test for metacommunity effects in food webs. PMID:21367786

  8. Species sorting and patch dynamics in harlequin metacommunities affect the relative importance of environment and space.

    PubMed

    Leibold, Mathew A; Loeuille, Nicolas

    2015-12-01

    Metacommunity theory indicates that variation in local community structure can be partitioned into components including those related to local environmental conditions vs. spatial effects and that these can be quantified using statistical methods based on variation partitioning. It has been hypothesized that joint associations of community composition with environment and space could be due to patch dynamics involving colonization-extinction processes in environmentally heterogeneous landscapes but this has yet to be theoretically shown. We develop a two-patch, type-two, species competition model in such a "harlequin" landscape (where different patches have different environments) to evaluate how composition is related to environmental and spatial effects as a function of background extinction rate. Using spatially implicit analytical models, we find that the environmental association of community composition declines with extinction rate as expected. Using spatially explicit simulation models, we further find that there is an increase in the spatial structure with extinction due to spatial patterning into clusters that are not related to environmental conditions but that this increase is limited. Natural metacommunities often show both environment and spatial determination even under conditions of relatively high isolation and these could be more easily explained by our model than alternative metacommunity models.

  9. Organic fields sustain weed metacommunity dynamics in farmland landscapes.

    PubMed

    Henckel, Laura; Börger, Luca; Meiss, Helmut; Gaba, Sabrina; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2015-06-07

    Agro-ecosystems constitute essential habitat for many organisms. Agricultural intensification, however, has caused a strong decline of farmland biodiversity. Organic farming (OF) is often presented as a more biodiversity-friendly practice, but the generality of the beneficial effects of OF is debated as the effects appear often species- and context-dependent, and current research has highlighted the need to quantify the relative effects of local- and landscape-scale management on farmland biodiversity. Yet very few studies have investigated the landscape-level effects of OF; that is to say, how the biodiversity of a field is affected by the presence or density of organically farmed fields in the surrounding landscape. We addressed this issue using the metacommunity framework, with weed species richness in winter wheat within an intensively farmed landscape in France as model system. Controlling for the effects of local and landscape structure, we showed that OF leads to higher local weed diversity and that the presence of OF in the landscape is associated with higher local weed biodiversity also for conventionally farmed fields, and may reach a similar biodiversity level to organic fields in field margins. Based on these results, we derive indications for improving the sustainable management of farming systems. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  10. Organic fields sustain weed metacommunity dynamics in farmland landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Henckel, Laura; Börger, Luca; Meiss, Helmut; Gaba, Sabrina; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    Agro-ecosystems constitute essential habitat for many organisms. Agricultural intensification, however, has caused a strong decline of farmland biodiversity. Organic farming (OF) is often presented as a more biodiversity-friendly practice, but the generality of the beneficial effects of OF is debated as the effects appear often species- and context-dependent, and current research has highlighted the need to quantify the relative effects of local- and landscape-scale management on farmland biodiversity. Yet very few studies have investigated the landscape-level effects of OF; that is to say, how the biodiversity of a field is affected by the presence or density of organically farmed fields in the surrounding landscape. We addressed this issue using the metacommunity framework, with weed species richness in winter wheat within an intensively farmed landscape in France as model system. Controlling for the effects of local and landscape structure, we showed that OF leads to higher local weed diversity and that the presence of OF in the landscape is associated with higher local weed biodiversity also for conventionally farmed fields, and may reach a similar biodiversity level to organic fields in field margins. Based on these results, we derive indications for improving the sustainable management of farming systems. PMID:25994672

  11. Interpreting beta-diversity components over time to conserve metacommunities in highly dynamic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Ruhí, Albert; Datry, Thibault; Sabo, John L

    2017-02-11

    The concept of metacommunity (i.e., a set of local communities linked by dispersal) has gained great popularity among community ecologists. However, metacommunity research mostly addresses questions on spatial patterns of biodiversity at the regional scale, whereas conservation planning requires quantifying temporal variation in those metacommunities and the contributions that individual (local) sites make to regional dynamics. We propose that recent advances in diversity-partitioning methods may allow for a better understanding of metacommunity dynamics and the identification of keystone sites. We used time series of the 2 components of beta diversity (richness and replacement) and the contributions of local sites to these components to examine which sites controlled source-sink dynamics in a highly dynamic model system (an intermittent river). The relative importance of the richness and replacement components of beta diversity fluctuated over time, and sample aggregation led to underestimation of beta diversity by up to 35%. Our literature review revealed that research on intermittent rivers would benefit greatly from examination of beta-diversity components over time. Adequately appraising spatiotemporal variability in community composition and identifying sites that are pivotal for maintaining biodiversity at the landscape scale are key needs for conservation prioritization and planning. Thus, our framework may be used to guide conservation actions in highly dynamic ecosystems when time-series data describing biodiversity across sites connected by dispersal are available. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  12. EVALUATING THE LONG-TERM METACOMMUNITY DYNAMICS OF TREE HOLE MOSQUITOES

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, Alicia M.; Lounibos, L. Philip; Holyoak, Marcel

    2007-01-01

    Four different conceptual models of metacommunities have been proposed, termed ‘‘patch dynamics,’’ ‘‘species sorting,’’ ‘‘mass effect,’’ and ‘‘neutral.’’ These models simplify thinking about metacommunities and improve our understanding of the role of spatial dynamics both in structuring communities and in determining local and regional diversity. We tested whether mosquito communities inhabiting water-filled tree holes in southeastern Florida, USA, displayed any of the characteristics and dynamics predicted by the four models. The densities of the five most common species in 3–8 tree holes were monitored every two weeks during 1978–2003. We tested relationships between habitat variables and species densities, spatial synchrony, the presence of life history trade-offs, and species turnover. Dynamics showed strong elements of species sorting, but with considerable turnover, as predicted by the patch dynamics model. Consistent with patch dynamics, there was substantial asynchrony in dynamics for different tree holes, substantial species turnover in space and time, and an occupancy/colonization trade-off. Substantial correlations of density and occupancy with tree hole volume were consistent with the species-sorting model, but unlike this model, species did not have permanent refuges. No evidence of mass effects was found, and correlations between habitat variables and dynamics were inconsistent with neutral models. Our results did not match a single model and therefore caution against overly simplifying metacommunity dynamics by using one dynamical characteristic to select a particular metacommunity perspective. PMID:17089666

  13. National-scale metacommunity dynamics of carabid beetles in UK farmland.

    PubMed

    Brooks, David R; Perry, Joe N; Clark, Suzanne J; Heard, Matthew S; Firbank, Les G; Holdgate, Ross; Mason, Neil S; Shortall, Chris R; Skellern, Matthew P; Woiwod, Ian P

    2008-03-01

    1. Understanding the wide-scale processes controlling communities across multiple sites is a foremost challenge of modern ecology. Here, data from a nation-wide network of field sites are used to describe the metacommunity dynamics of arable carabid beetles. This is done by modelling how communities are structured at a local level, by changes in the environment of the sampled fields and, at a regional level, by fitting spatial parameters describing latitudinal and longitudinal gradients. 2. Local and regional processes demonstrated independent and significant capacities for structuring communities. Within the local environment, crop type was found to be the primary determinant of carabid community composition. The regional component included a strong response to a longitudinal gradient, with significant increases in diversity in an east-to-west direction. 3. Carabid metacommunities seem to be structured by a combination of species sorting dynamics, operating at two different, but equally important, spatial scales. At a local scale, species are sorted along a resource gradient determined by crop type. At a wider spatial scale species appear to be sorted along a longitudinal gradient. 4. Nation-wide trends in communities coincided with known gradients of increased homogeneity of habitat mosaics and agricultural intensification. However, more work is required to understand fully how communities are controlled by the interaction of crops with changes in landscape structure at different spatial scales. 5. We conclude that crop type is a powerful determinant of carabid biodiversity, but that it cannot be considered in isolation from other components of the landscape for optimal conservation policy.

  14. Dispersal and life history strategies in epiphyte metacommunities: alternative solutions to survival in patchy, dynamic landscapes.

    PubMed

    Löbel, Swantje; Rydin, Håkan

    2009-09-01

    Host trees for obligate epiphytes are dynamic patches that emerge, grow and fall, and metacommunity diversity critically depends on efficient dispersal. Even though species that disperse by large asexual diaspores are strongly dispersal limited, asexual dispersal is common. The stronger dispersal limitation of asexually reproducing species compared to species reproducing sexually via small spores may be compensated by higher growth rates, lower sensitivity to habitat conditions, higher competitive ability or younger reproductive age. We compared growth and reproduction of different groups of epiphytic bryophytes with contrasting dispersal (asexual vs. sexual) and life history strategies (colonists, short- and long-lived shuttle species, perennial stayers) in an old-growth forest stand in the boreo-nemoral region in eastern Sweden. No differences were seen in relative growth rates between asexual and sexual species. Long-lived shuttles had lower growth rates than colonists and perennial stayers. Most groups grew best at intermediate bark pH. Interactions with other epiphytes had a small, often positive effect on growth. Neither differences in sensitivity of growth to habitat conditions nor differences in competitive abilities among species groups were found. Habitat conditions, however, influenced the production of sporophytes, but not of asexual diaspores. Presence of sporophytes negatively affected growth, whereas presence of asexual diaspores did not. Sexual species had to reach a certain colony size before starting to reproduce, whereas no such threshold existed for asexual reproduction. The results indicate that the epiphyte metacommunity is structured by two main trade-offs: dispersal distance vs. reproductive age, and dispersal distance vs. sensitivity to habitat quality. There seems to be a trade-off between growth and sexual reproduction, but not asexual. Trade-offs in species traits may be shaped by conflicting selection pressures imposed by habitat

  15. Mammal diversity and metacommunity dynamics in urban green spaces: implications for urban wildlife conservation.

    PubMed

    Gallo, Travis; Fidino, Mason; Lehrer, Elizabeth W; Magle, Seth B

    2017-08-21

    As urban growth expands and natural environments fragment, it is essential to understand the ecological roles fulfilled by urban green spaces. To evaluate how urban green spaces function as wildlife habitat, we estimated mammal diversity and metacommunity dynamics in city parks, cemeteries, golf courses, and natural areas throughout the greater Chicago, IL, USA region. We found similar α-diversity (with the exception of city parks), but remarkably dissimilar communities in different urban green spaces. Additionally, the type of urban green space greatly influenced species colonization and persistence rates. For example, coyotes (Canis latrans) had the highest, but white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) the lowest, probability of persistence in golf courses compared to other green space types. Further, most species had a difficult time colonizing city parks even when sites were seemingly available. Our results indicate that urban green spaces contribute different, but collectively important, habitats for maintaining and conserving biodiversity in cities. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  16. Making sense of metacommunities: dispelling the mythology of a metacommunity typology.

    PubMed

    Brown, Bryan L; Sokol, Eric R; Skelton, James; Tornwall, Brett

    2017-03-01

    Metacommunity ecology has rapidly become a dominant framework through which ecologists understand the natural world. Unfortunately, persistent misunderstandings regarding metacommunity theory and the methods for evaluating hypotheses based on the theory are common in the ecological literature. Since its beginnings, four major paradigms-species sorting, mass effects, neutrality, and patch dynamics-have been associated with metacommunity ecology. The Big 4 have been misconstrued to represent the complete set of metacommunity dynamics. As a result, many investigators attempt to evaluate community assembly processes as strictly belonging to one of the Big 4 types, rather than embracing the full scope of metacommunity theory. The Big 4 were never intended to represent the entire spectrum of metacommunity dynamics and were rather examples of historical paradigms that fit within the new framework. We argue that perpetuation of the Big 4 typology hurts community ecology and we encourage researchers to embrace the full inference space of metacommunity theory. A related, but distinct issue is that the technique of variation partitioning is often used to evaluate the dynamics of metacommunities. This methodology has produced its own set of misunderstandings, some of which are directly a product of the Big 4 typology and others which are simply the product of poor study design or statistical artefacts. However, variation partitioning is a potentially powerful technique when used appropriately and we identify several strategies for successful utilization of variation partitioning.

  17. Invertebrate Metacommunity Structure and Dynamics in an Andean Glacial Stream Network Facing Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Cauvy-Fraunié, Sophie; Espinosa, Rodrigo; Andino, Patricio; Jacobsen, Dean; Dangles, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    Under the ongoing climate change, understanding the mechanisms structuring the spatial distribution of aquatic species in glacial stream networks is of critical importance to predict the response of aquatic biodiversity in the face of glacier melting. In this study, we propose to use metacommunity theory as a conceptual framework to better understand how river network structure influences the spatial organization of aquatic communities in glacierized catchments. At 51 stream sites in an Andean glacierized catchment (Ecuador), we sampled benthic macroinvertebrates, measured physico-chemical and food resource conditions, and calculated geographical, altitudinal and glaciality distances among all sites. Using partial redundancy analysis, we partitioned community variation to evaluate the relative strength of environmental conditions (e.g., glaciality, food resource) vs. spatial processes (e.g., overland, watercourse, and downstream directional dispersal) in organizing the aquatic metacommunity. Results revealed that both environmental and spatial variables significantly explained community variation among sites. Among all environmental variables, the glacial influence component best explained community variation. Overland spatial variables based on geographical and altitudinal distances significantly affected community variation. Watercourse spatial variables based on glaciality distances had a unique significant effect on community variation. Within alpine catchment, glacial meltwater affects macroinvertebrate metacommunity structure in many ways. Indeed, the harsh environmental conditions characterizing glacial influence not only constitute the primary environmental filter but also, limit water-borne macroinvertebrate dispersal. Therefore, glacier runoff acts as an aquatic dispersal barrier, isolating species in headwater streams, and preventing non-adapted species to colonize throughout the entire stream network. Under a scenario of glacier runoff decrease, we

  18. Invertebrate Metacommunity Structure and Dynamics in an Andean Glacial Stream Network Facing Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Cauvy-Fraunié, Sophie; Espinosa, Rodrigo; Andino, Patricio; Jacobsen, Dean; Dangles, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    Under the ongoing climate change, understanding the mechanisms structuring the spatial distribution of aquatic species in glacial stream networks is of critical importance to predict the response of aquatic biodiversity in the face of glacier melting. In this study, we propose to use metacommunity theory as a conceptual framework to better understand how river network structure influences the spatial organization of aquatic communities in glacierized catchments. At 51 stream sites in an Andean glacierized catchment (Ecuador), we sampled benthic macroinvertebrates, measured physico-chemical and food resource conditions, and calculated geographical, altitudinal and glaciality distances among all sites. Using partial redundancy analysis, we partitioned community variation to evaluate the relative strength of environmental conditions (e.g., glaciality, food resource) vs. spatial processes (e.g., overland, watercourse, and downstream directional dispersal) in organizing the aquatic metacommunity. Results revealed that both environmental and spatial variables significantly explained community variation among sites. Among all environmental variables, the glacial influence component best explained community variation. Overland spatial variables based on geographical and altitudinal distances significantly affected community variation. Watercourse spatial variables based on glaciality distances had a unique significant effect on community variation. Within alpine catchment, glacial meltwater affects macroinvertebrate metacommunity structure in many ways. Indeed, the harsh environmental conditions characterizing glacial influence not only constitute the primary environmental filter but also, limit water-borne macroinvertebrate dispersal. Therefore, glacier runoff acts as an aquatic dispersal barrier, isolating species in headwater streams, and preventing non-adapted species to colonize throughout the entire stream network. Under a scenario of glacier runoff decrease, we

  19. Linking metacommunity paradigms to spatial coexistence mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Shoemaker, Lauren G; Melbourne, Brett A

    2016-09-01

    Four metacommunity paradigms-usually called neutral, species sorting, mass effects, and patch dynamics, respectively-are widely used for empirical and theoretical studies of spatial community dynamics. The paradigm framework highlights key ecological mechanisms operating in metacommunities, such as dispersal limitation, competition-colonization tradeoffs, or species equivalencies. However, differences in coexistence mechanisms between the paradigms and in situations with combined influences of multiple paradigms are not well understood. Here, we create a common model for competitive metacommunities, with unique parameterizations for each metacommunity paradigm and for scenarios with multiple paradigms operating simultaneously. We derive analytical expressions for the strength of Chesson's spatial coexistence mechanisms and quantify these for each paradigm via simulation. For our model, fitness-density covariance, a concentration effect measuring the importance of intraspecific aggregation of individuals, is the dominant coexistence mechanism in all three niche-based metacommunity paradigms. Increased dispersal between patches erodes intraspecific aggregation, leading to lower coexistence strength in the mass effects paradigm compared to species sorting. Our analysis demonstrates the potential importance of aggregation of individuals (fitness-density covariance) over co-variation in abiotic environments and competition between species (the storage effect), as fitness-density covariance can be stronger than the storage effect and is the sole stabilizing mechanism in the patch dynamics paradigm. As expected, stable coexistence does not occur in the neutral paradigm, which requires species to be equal and emphasizes the role of stochasticity. We show that stochasticity also plays an important role in niche-structured metacommunities by altering coexistence strength. We conclude that Chesson's spatial coexistence mechanisms provide a flexible framework for comparing

  20. Metacommunity ecology meets biogeography: effects of geographical region, spatial dynamics and environmental filtering on community structure in aquatic organisms.

    PubMed

    Heino, Jani; Soininen, Janne; Alahuhta, Janne; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Virtanen, Risto

    2017-01-01

    Metacommunity patterns and underlying processes in aquatic organisms have typically been studied within a drainage basin. We examined variation in the composition of six freshwater organismal groups across various drainage basins in Finland. We first modelled spatial structures within each drainage basin using Moran eigenvector maps. Second, we partitioned variation in community structure among three groups of predictors using constrained ordination: (1) local environmental variables, (2) spatial variables, and (3) dummy variable drainage basin identity. Third, we examined turnover and nestedness components of multiple-site beta diversity, and tested the best fit patterns of our datasets using the "elements of metacommunity structure" analysis. Our results showed that basin identity and local environmental variables were significant predictors of community structure, whereas within-basin spatial effects were typically negligible. In half of the organismal groups (diatoms, bryophytes, zooplankton), basin identity was a slightly better predictor of community structure than local environmental variables, whereas the opposite was true for the remaining three organismal groups (insects, macrophytes, fish). Both pure basin and local environmental fractions were, however, significant after accounting for the effects of the other predictor variable sets. All organismal groups exhibited high levels of beta diversity, which was mostly attributable to the turnover component. Our results showed consistent Clementsian-type metacommunity structures, suggesting that subgroups of species responded similarly to environmental factors or drainage basin limits. We conclude that aquatic communities across large scales are mostly determined by environmental and basin effects, which leads to high beta diversity and prevalence of Clementsian community types.

  1. Ecological consequences of evolution in plant defenses in a metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Loeuille, N; Leibold, M A

    2008-08-01

    Dispersal can affect the assembly of local communities in a metacommunity as well as evolution of local populations in a metapopulation. These two processes may also affect each other in ways that have not yet been well studied and that may have novel effects on community structure. Here, we illustrate the interaction of these two processes on community structure with a model of adaptive evolutionary dynamics of plant defenses in a metacommunity food web involving multiple patches along a productivity gradient. We find an enhanced suite of adaptive plant types in our metacommunity model than is predicted in the absence of dispersal. We also find that this, and the movement of nutrients among patches via dispersal, alters patterns of food web architecture, trophic structure and diversity along the productivity gradient. Overall, our model illustrates that evolutionary and metacommunity dynamics may influence communities in complex interactive ways that may not be predicted by models that ignore either of these types of processes.

  2. Metacommunity theory explains the emergence of food web complexity.

    PubMed

    Pillai, Pradeep; Gonzalez, Andrew; Loreau, Michel

    2011-11-29

    Food webs are highly complex ecological networks, dynamic in both space and time. Metacommunity models are now at the core of unified theories of biodiversity, but to date they have not addressed food web complexity. Here we show that metacommunity theory can explain the emergence of species-rich food webs with complex network topologies. Our analysis shows that network branching in the food web is maximized at intermediate colonization rates and limited dispersal scales, which also leads to concomitant peaks in species diversity. Increased food web complexity and species diversity are made possible by the structural role played by network branches that are supported by omnivore and generalist feeding links. Thus, in contrast to traditional food web theory, which emphasizes the destabilizing effect of omnivory feeding in closed systems, metacommunity theory predicts that these feeding links, which are commonly observed in empirical food webs, play a critical structural role as food webs assemble in space. As this mechanism functions at the metacommunity level, evidence for its operation in nature will be obtained through multiscale surveys of food web structure. Finally, we apply our theory to reveal the effects of habitat destruction on network complexity and metacommunity diversity.

  3. Metacommunity theory explains the emergence of food web complexity

    PubMed Central

    Pillai, Pradeep; Gonzalez, Andrew; Loreau, Michel

    2011-01-01

    Food webs are highly complex ecological networks, dynamic in both space and time. Metacommunity models are now at the core of unified theories of biodiversity, but to date they have not addressed food web complexity. Here we show that metacommunity theory can explain the emergence of species-rich food webs with complex network topologies. Our analysis shows that network branching in the food web is maximized at intermediate colonization rates and limited dispersal scales, which also leads to concomitant peaks in species diversity. Increased food web complexity and species diversity are made possible by the structural role played by network branches that are supported by omnivore and generalist feeding links. Thus, in contrast to traditional food web theory, which emphasizes the destabilizing effect of omnivory feeding in closed systems, metacommunity theory predicts that these feeding links, which are commonly observed in empirical food webs, play a critical structural role as food webs assemble in space. As this mechanism functions at the metacommunity level, evidence for its operation in nature will be obtained through multiscale surveys of food web structure. Finally, we apply our theory to reveal the effects of habitat destruction on network complexity and metacommunity diversity. PMID:22084089

  4. Connectivity and propagule sources composition drive ditch plant metacommunity structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favre-Bac, Lisa; Ernoult, Aude; Mony, Cendrine; Rantier, Yann; Nabucet, Jean; Burel, Françoise

    2014-11-01

    The fragmentation of agricultural landscapes has a major impact on biodiversity. In addition to habitat loss, dispersal limitation increasingly appears as a significant driver of biodiversity decline. Landscape linear elements, like ditches, may reduce the negative impacts of fragmentation by enhancing connectivity for many organisms, in addition to providing refuge habitats. To characterize these effects, we investigated the respective roles of propagule source composition and connectivity at the landscape scale on hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous ditch bank plant metacommunities. Twenty-seven square sites (0.5 km2 each) were selected in an agricultural lowland of northern France. At each site, plant communities were sampled on nine ditch banks (totaling 243 ditches). Variables characterizing propagule sources composition and connectivity were calculated for landscape mosaic and ditch network models. The landscape mosaic influenced only non-hydrochorous species, while the ditch network impacted both hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous species. Non-hydrochorous metacommunities were dependent on a large set of land-use elements, either within the landscape mosaic or adjacent to the ditch network, whereas hydrochorous plant metacommunities were only impacted by the presence of ditches adjacent to crops and roads. Ditch network connectivity also influenced both hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous ditch bank plant metacommunity structure, suggesting that beyond favoring hydrochory, ditches may also enhance plant dispersal by acting on other dispersal vectors. Increasing propagule sources heterogeneity and connectivity appeared to decrease within-metacommunity similarity within landscapes. Altogether, our results suggest that the ditch network's composition and configuration impacts plant metacommunity structure by affecting propagule dispersal possibilities, with contrasted consequences depending on species' dispersal vectors.

  5. Metacommunity speciation models and their implications for diversification theory.

    PubMed

    Hubert, Nicolas; Calcagno, Vincent; Etienne, Rampal S; Mouquet, Nicolas

    2015-08-01

    The emergence of new frameworks combining evolutionary and ecological dynamics in communities opens new perspectives on the study of speciation. By acknowledging the relative contribution of local and regional dynamics in shaping the complexity of ecological communities, metacommunity theory sheds a new light on the mechanisms underlying the emergence of species. Three integrative frameworks have been proposed, involving neutral dynamics, niche theory, and life history trade-offs respectively. Here, we review these frameworks of metacommunity theory to emphasise that: (1) studies on speciation and community ecology have converged towards similar general principles by acknowledging the central role of dispersal in metacommunities dynamics, (2) considering the conditions of emergence and maintenance of new species in communities has given rise to new models of speciation embedded in the metacommunity theory, (3) studies of diversification have shifted from relating phylogenetic patterns to landscapes spatial and ecological characteristics towards integrative approaches that explicitly consider speciation in a mechanistic ecological framework. We highlight several challenges, in particular the need for a better integration of the eco-evolutionary consequences of dispersal and the need to increase our understanding on the relative rates of evolutionary and ecological changes in communities.

  6. The Dynamics of Neighborhood Change and Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grigsby, William; And Others

    The economic and physical decline of urban neighborhoods has become a widespread and widely misunderstood phenomenon in post-war America. It has not been restricted to aging central cities: most growing cities and many suburbs possess areas of decay as well. After decades of changing occupancy, dwellings have fallen into disrepair, and the quality…

  7. The Dynamics of Neighborhood Change and Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grigsby, William; And Others

    The economic and physical decline of urban neighborhoods has become a widespread and widely misunderstood phenomenon in post-war America. It has not been restricted to aging central cities: most growing cities and many suburbs possess areas of decay as well. After decades of changing occupancy, dwellings have fallen into disrepair, and the quality…

  8. Biodiversity conservation in metacommunity networks: linking pattern and persistence.

    PubMed

    Economo, Evan P

    2011-06-01

    A central goal of conservation science is to identify the most important habitat patches for maintaining biodiversity on a landscape. Spatial biodiversity patterns are often used for such assessments, and patches that harbor unique diversity are generally prioritized over those with high community similarity to other areas. This places an emphasis on biodiversity representation, but removing a patch can have cascading effects on biodiversity persistence in the remaining ecological communities. Metacommunity theory provides a mechanistic route to the linking of biodiversity patterns on a landscape with the subsequent dynamics of diversity loss after habitat is degraded. Using spatially explicit neutral theory, I focus on the situation where spatial patterns of diversity and similarity are generated by the structure of dispersal networks and not environmental gradients. I find that gains in biodiversity representation are nullified by losses in persistence, and as a result the effects of removing a patch on metacommunity diversity are essentially independent of complementarity or other biodiversity patterns. In this scenario, maximizing protected area and not biodiversity representation is the key to maintaining diversity in the long term. These results highlight the need for a broader understanding of how conservation paradigms perform under different models of metacommunity dynamics.

  9. A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm.

    PubMed

    Heino, Jani; Soininen, Janne; Alahuhta, Janne; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Virtanen, Risto

    2015-04-01

    Most metacommunity studies have taken a direct mechanistic approach, aiming to model the effects of local and regional processes on local communities within a metacommunity. An alternative approach is to focus on emergent patterns at the metacommunity level through applying the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS; Oikos, 97, 2002, 237) analysis. The EMS approach has very rarely been applied in the context of a comparative analysis of metacommunity types of main microbial, plant, and animal groups. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no study has associated metacommunity types with their potential ecological correlates in the freshwater realm. We assembled data for 45 freshwater metacommunities, incorporating biologically highly disparate organismal groups (i.e., bacteria, algae, macrophytes, invertebrates, and fish). We first examined ecological correlates (e.g., matrix properties, beta diversity, and average characteristics of a metacommunity, including body size, trophic group, ecosystem type, life form, and dispersal mode) of the three elements of metacommunity structure (i.e., coherence, turnover, and boundary clumping). Second, based on those three elements, we determined which metacommunity types prevailed in freshwater systems and which ecological correlates best discriminated among the observed metacommunity types. We found that the three elements of metacommunity structure were not strongly related to the ecological correlates, except that turnover was positively related to beta diversity. We observed six metacommunity types. The most common were Clementsian and quasi-nested metacommunity types, whereas Random, quasi-Clementsian, Gleasonian, and quasi-Gleasonian types were less common. These six metacommunity types were best discriminated by beta diversity and the first axis of metacommunity ecological traits, ranging from metacommunities of producer organisms occurring in streams to those of large predatory organisms occurring in lakes. Our results showed

  10. A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm

    PubMed Central

    Heino, Jani; Soininen, Janne; Alahuhta, Janne; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Virtanen, Risto

    2015-01-01

    Most metacommunity studies have taken a direct mechanistic approach, aiming to model the effects of local and regional processes on local communities within a metacommunity. An alternative approach is to focus on emergent patterns at the metacommunity level through applying the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS; Oikos, 97, 2002, 237) analysis. The EMS approach has very rarely been applied in the context of a comparative analysis of metacommunity types of main microbial, plant, and animal groups. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no study has associated metacommunity types with their potential ecological correlates in the freshwater realm. We assembled data for 45 freshwater metacommunities, incorporating biologically highly disparate organismal groups (i.e., bacteria, algae, macrophytes, invertebrates, and fish). We first examined ecological correlates (e.g., matrix properties, beta diversity, and average characteristics of a metacommunity, including body size, trophic group, ecosystem type, life form, and dispersal mode) of the three elements of metacommunity structure (i.e., coherence, turnover, and boundary clumping). Second, based on those three elements, we determined which metacommunity types prevailed in freshwater systems and which ecological correlates best discriminated among the observed metacommunity types. We found that the three elements of metacommunity structure were not strongly related to the ecological correlates, except that turnover was positively related to beta diversity. We observed six metacommunity types. The most common were Clementsian and quasi-nested metacommunity types, whereas Random, quasi-Clementsian, Gleasonian, and quasi-Gleasonian types were less common. These six metacommunity types were best discriminated by beta diversity and the first axis of metacommunity ecological traits, ranging from metacommunities of producer organisms occurring in streams to those of large predatory organisms occurring in lakes. Our results showed

  11. Community rescue in experimental metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Low-Décarie, Etienne; Kolber, Marcus; Homme, Paige; Lofano, Andrea; Dumbrell, Alex; Gonzalez, Andrew; Bell, Graham

    2015-01-01

    The conditions that allow biodiversity to recover following severe environmental degradation are poorly understood. We studied community rescue, the recovery of a viable community through the evolutionary rescue of many populations within an evolving community, in metacommunities of soil microbes adapting to a herbicide. The metacommunities occupied a landscape of crossed spatial gradients of the herbicide (Dalapon) and a resource (glucose), whereas their constituent communities were either isolated or connected by dispersal. The spread of adapted communities across the landscape and the persistence of communities when that landscape was degraded were strongly promoted by dispersal, and the capacity to adapt to lethal stress was also related to community size and initial diversity. After abrupt and lethal stress, community rescue was most frequent in communities that had previously experienced sublethal levels of stress and had been connected by dispersal. Community rescue occurred through the evolutionary rescue of both initially common taxa, which remained common, and of initially rare taxa, which grew to dominate the evolved community. Community rescue may allow productivity and biodiversity to recover from severe environmental degradation. PMID:26578777

  12. Habitat destruction in mutualistic metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Prakash, Sona; de Roos, André M

    2004-03-01

    We investigate a mutualistic metacommunity where the strength of the mutualistic interaction between species is measured by the extent to which the presence of one species on a patch either reduces the extinction rate of the others present on the same patch or increases their ability to colonize other patches. In both cases, a strong enough mutualism enables all species to persist at habitat densities where they would all be extinct in the absence of the interaction. However, a mutualistic interaction that enhances colonization enables the species to persist at lower habitat density than one that suppresses extinction. All species abruptly go extinct (catastrophe) when the habitat density is decreased infinitesimally below a critical value. A comparison of the mean field or spatially implicit case with unrestricted dispersal and colonization to all patches in the system with a spatially explicit case where dispersal is restricted to the immediate neighbours of the original patch leads to the intriguing conclusion that restricted dispersal can be favourable for species that have a beneficial effect on each other when habitat conditions are adverse. When the mutualistic interaction is strong enough, the extinction threshold or critical amount of habitat required for the persistence of all species is lower when the dispersal is locally restricted than when unrestricted ! The persistence advantage for all species created by the mutualistic interaction increases substantially with the number of species in the metacommunity, as does the advantage for restricted dispersal over global dispersal.

  13. Food-web complexity, meta-community complexity and community stability.

    PubMed

    Mougi, A; Kondoh, M

    2016-04-13

    What allows interacting, diverse species to coexist in nature has been a central question in ecology, ever since the theoretical prediction that a complex community should be inherently unstable. Although the role of spatiality in species coexistence has been recognized, its application to more complex systems has been less explored. Here, using a meta-community model of food web, we show that meta-community complexity, measured by the number of local food webs and their connectedness, elicits a self-regulating, negative-feedback mechanism and thus stabilizes food-web dynamics. Moreover, the presence of meta-community complexity can give rise to a positive food-web complexity-stability effect. Spatiality may play a more important role in stabilizing dynamics of complex, real food webs than expected from ecological theory based on the models of simpler food webs.

  14. Metacommunity patterns in larval odonates.

    PubMed

    McCauley, Shannon J; Davis, Christopher J; Relyea, Rick A; Yurewicz, Kerry L; Skelly, David K; Werner, Earl E

    2008-11-01

    The growth of metacommunity ecology as a subdiscipline has increased interest in how processes at different spatial scales structure communities. However, there is still a significant knowledge gap with respect to relating the action of niche- and dispersal-assembly mechanisms to observed species distributions across gradients. Surveys of the larval dragonfly community (Odonata: Anisoptera) in 57 lakes and ponds in southeast Michigan were used to evaluate hypotheses about the processes regulating community structure in this system. We considered the roles of both niche- and dispersal-assembly processes in determining patterns of species richness and composition across a habitat gradient involving changes in the extent of habitat permanence, canopy cover, area, and top predator type. We compared observed richness patterns and species distributions in this system to patterns predicted by four general community models: species sorting related to adaptive trade-offs, a developmental constraints hypothesis, dispersal assembly, and a neutral community assemblage. Our results supported neither the developmental constraints nor the neutral-assemblage models. Observed patterns of richness and species distributions were consistent with patterns expected when adaptive tradeoffs and dispersal-assembly mechanisms affect community structure. Adaptive trade-offs appeared to be important in limiting the distributions of species which segregate across the habitat gradient. However, dispersal was important in shaping the distributions of species that utilize habitats with a broad range of hydroperiods and alternative top predator types. Our results also suggest that the relative importance of these mechanisms may change across this habitat gradient and that a metacommunity perspective which incorporates both niche- and dispersal-assembly processes is necessary to understand how communities are organized.

  15. Multi-scale responses to warming in an experimental insect metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Grainger, Tess Nahanni; Gilbert, Benjamin

    2017-05-29

    In metacommunities, diversity is the product of species interactions at the local scale and dispersal between habitat patches at the regional scale. Although warming can alter both species interactions and dispersal, the combined effects of warming on these two processes remains uncertain. To determine the independent and interactive effects of warming-induced changes to local species interactions and dispersal, we constructed experimental metacommunities consisting of enclosed milkweed patches seeded with five herbivorous milkweed specialist insect species. We treated metacommunities with two levels of warming (unwarmed and warmed) and three levels of connectivity (isolated, low connectivity, high connectivity). Based on metabolic theory, we predicted that if plant resources were limited, warming would accelerate resource drawdown, causing local insect declines and increasing both insect dispersal and the importance of connectivity to neighboring patches for insect persistence. Conversely, given abundant resources, warming could have positive local effects on insects, and the risk of traversing a corridor to reach a neighboring patch could outweigh the benefits of additional resources. We found support for the latter scenario. Neither resource drawdown nor the weak insect-insect associations in our system were affected by warming, and most insect species did better locally in warmed conditions and had dispersal responses that were unchanged or indirectly affected by warming. Dispersal across the matrix posed a species-specific risk that led to declines in two species in connected metacommunities. Combined, this scaled up to cause an interactive effect of warming and connectivity on diversity, with unwarmed metacommunities with low connectivity incurring the most rapid declines in diversity. Overall, this study demonstrates the importance of integrating the complex outcomes of species interactions and spatial structure in understanding community response to climate

  16. Local community size mediates ecological drift and competition in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Orrock, John L; Watling, James I

    2010-07-22

    The outcome of competitive interactions is likely to be influenced by both competitive dominance (i.e. niche-based dynamics) and ecological drift (i.e. neutral dynamics governed by demographic stochasticity). However, spatial models of competition rarely consider the joint operation of these two processes. We develop a model based on the original competition-colonization trade-off model that incorporates niche and neutral processes and several realistic facets of ecological dynamics: it allows local competition (i.e. competition within a patch) to occur within communities of a finite size, it allows competitors to vary in the degree of competitive asymmetry, and it includes the role of local migration (i.e. propagule pressure). The model highlights the role of community size, i.e. the number of competitors in the local community, in mediating the relative importance of stochastic and deterministic forces. In metacommunities where local communities are small, ecological drift is substantial enough that strong competitors become effectively neutral, creating abrupt changes in the outcome of competition not predicted by the standard competition-colonization trade-off. Importantly, the model illustrates that, even when other aspects of species interactions (e.g. migration ability, competitive ability) are unchanged, local community size can alter the dynamics of metacommunity persistence. Our work demonstrates that activities which reduce the size of local communities, such as habitat destruction and degradation, effectively compound the extinction debt.

  17. Angular Declination and the Dynamic Perception of Egocentric Distance

    PubMed Central

    Gajewski, Daniel A.; Philbeck, John W.; Wirtz, Philip W.; Chichka, David

    2014-01-01

    The extraction of the distance between an object and an observer is fast when angular declination is informative, as it is with targets placed on the ground. To what extent does angular declination drive performance when viewing time is limited? Participants judged target distances in a real-world environment with viewing durations ranging from 36–220 ms. An important role for angular declination was supported by experiments showing that the cue provides information about egocentric distance even on the very first glimpse, and that it supports a sensitive response to distance in the absence of other useful cues. Performance was better at 220 ms viewing durations than for briefer glimpses, suggesting that the perception of distance is dynamic even within the time frame of a typical eye fixation. Critically, performance in limited viewing trials was better when preceded by a 15 second preview of the room without a designated target. The results indicate that the perception of distance is powerfully shaped by memory from prior visual experience with the scene. A theoretical framework for the dynamic perception of distance is presented. PMID:24099588

  18. Angular declination and the dynamic perception of egocentric distance.

    PubMed

    Gajewski, Daniel A; Philbeck, John W; Wirtz, Philip W; Chichka, David

    2014-02-01

    The extraction of the distance between an object and an observer is fast when angular declination is informative, as it is with targets placed on the ground. To what extent does angular declination drive performance when viewing time is limited? Participants judged target distances in a real-world environment with viewing durations ranging from 36-220 ms. An important role for angular declination was supported by experiments showing that the cue provides information about egocentric distance even on the very first glimpse, and that it supports a sensitive response to distance in the absence of other useful cues. Performance was better at 220-ms viewing durations than for briefer glimpses, suggesting that the perception of distance is dynamic even within the time frame of a typical eye fixation. Critically, performance in limited viewing trials was better when preceded by a 15-s preview of the room without a designated target. The results indicate that the perception of distance is powerfully shaped by memory from prior visual experience with the scene. A theoretical framework for the dynamic perception of distance is presented. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  19. Onshore–offshore gradient in metacommunity turnover emerges only over macroevolutionary time-scales

    PubMed Central

    Tomašových, Adam; Dominici, Stefano; Zuschin, Martin; Merle, Didier

    2014-01-01

    Invertebrate lineages tend to originate and become extinct at a higher rate in onshore than in offshore habitats over long temporal durations (more than 10 Myr), but it remains unclear whether this pattern scales down to durations of stages (less than 5 Myr) or even sequences (less than 0.5 Myr). We assess whether onshore–offshore gradients in long-term turnover between the tropical Eocene and the warm-temperate Plio-Pleistocene can be extrapolated from gradients in short-term turnover, using abundances of molluscan species from bulk samples in the northeast Atlantic Province. We find that temporal turnover of metacommunities does not significantly decline with depth over short durations (less than 5 Myr), but significantly declines with depth between the Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene (approx. 50 Myr). This decline is determined by a higher onshore extinction of Eocene genera and families, by a higher onshore variability in abundances of genera and families, and by an onshore expansion of genera and families that were frequent offshore in the Eocene. Onshore–offshore decline in turnover thus emerges only over long temporal durations. We suggest that this emergence is triggered by abrupt and spatially extensive climatic or oceanographic perturbations that occurred between the Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene. Plio-Pleistocene metacommunities show a high proportion of bathymetric generalists, in contrast to Eocene metacommunities. Accordingly, the net cooling and weaker thermal gradients may have allowed offshore specialists to expand into onshore habitats and maintain their presence in offshore habitats. PMID:25297863

  20. Dynamic hub load predicts cognitive decline after resective neurosurgery.

    PubMed

    Carbo, Ellen W S; Hillebrand, Arjan; van Dellen, Edwin; Tewarie, Prejaas; de Witt Hamer, Philip C; Baayen, Johannes C; Klein, Martin; Geurts, Jeroen J G; Reijneveld, Jaap C; Stam, Cornelis J; Douw, Linda

    2017-02-07

    Resective neurosurgery carries the risk of postoperative cognitive deterioration. The concept of 'hub (over)load', caused by (over)use of the most important brain regions, has been theoretically postulated in relation to symptomatology and neurological disease course, but lacks experimental confirmation. We investigated functional hub load and postsurgical cognitive deterioration in patients undergoing lesion resection. Patients (n = 28) underwent resting-state magnetoencephalography and neuropsychological assessments preoperatively and 1-year after lesion resection. We calculated stationary hub load score (SHub) indicating to what extent brain regions linked different subsystems; high SHub indicates larger processing pressure on hub regions. Dynamic hub load score (DHub) assessed its variability over time; low values, particularly in combination with high SHub values, indicate increased load, because of consistently high usage of hub regions. Hypothetically, increased SHub and decreased DHub relate to hub overload and thus poorer/deteriorating cognition. Between time points, deteriorating verbal memory performance correlated with decreasing upper alpha DHub. Moreover, preoperatively low DHub values accurately predicted declining verbal memory performance. In summary, dynamic hub load relates to cognitive functioning in patients undergoing lesion resection: postoperative cognitive decline can be tracked and even predicted using dynamic hub load, suggesting it may be used as a prognostic marker for tailored treatment planning.

  1. Dynamic hub load predicts cognitive decline after resective neurosurgery

    PubMed Central

    Carbo, Ellen W. S.; Hillebrand, Arjan; van Dellen, Edwin; Tewarie, Prejaas; de Witt Hamer, Philip C.; Baayen, Johannes C.; Klein, Martin; Geurts, Jeroen J. G.; Reijneveld, Jaap C.; Stam, Cornelis J.; Douw, Linda

    2017-01-01

    Resective neurosurgery carries the risk of postoperative cognitive deterioration. The concept of ‘hub (over)load’, caused by (over)use of the most important brain regions, has been theoretically postulated in relation to symptomatology and neurological disease course, but lacks experimental confirmation. We investigated functional hub load and postsurgical cognitive deterioration in patients undergoing lesion resection. Patients (n = 28) underwent resting-state magnetoencephalography and neuropsychological assessments preoperatively and 1-year after lesion resection. We calculated stationary hub load score (SHub) indicating to what extent brain regions linked different subsystems; high SHub indicates larger processing pressure on hub regions. Dynamic hub load score (DHub) assessed its variability over time; low values, particularly in combination with high SHub values, indicate increased load, because of consistently high usage of hub regions. Hypothetically, increased SHub and decreased DHub relate to hub overload and thus poorer/deteriorating cognition. Between time points, deteriorating verbal memory performance correlated with decreasing upper alpha DHub. Moreover, preoperatively low DHub values accurately predicted declining verbal memory performance. In summary, dynamic hub load relates to cognitive functioning in patients undergoing lesion resection: postoperative cognitive decline can be tracked and even predicted using dynamic hub load, suggesting it may be used as a prognostic marker for tailored treatment planning. PMID:28169349

  2. Density-dependent dispersal and relative dispersal affect the stability of predator-prey metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Hauzy, Céline; Gauduchon, Mathias; Hulot, Florence D; Loreau, Michel

    2010-10-07

    Although density-dependent dispersal and relative dispersal (the difference in dispersal rates between species) have been documented in natural systems, their effects on the stability of metacommunities are poorly understood. Here we investigate the effects of intra- and interspecific density-dependent dispersal on the regional stability in a predator-prey metacommunity model. We show that, when the dynamics of the populations reach equilibrium, the stability of the metacommunity is not affected by density-dependent dispersal. However, the regional stability, measured as the regional variability or the persistence, can be modified by density-dependent dispersal when local populations fluctuate over time. Moreover these effects depend on the relative dispersal of the predator and the prey. Regional stability is modified through changes in spatial synchrony. Interspecific density-dependent dispersal always desynchronizses local dynamics, whereas intraspecific density-dependent dispersal may either synchronize or desynchronize it depending on dispersal rates. Moreover, intra- and interspecific density-dependent dispersal strengthen the top-down control of the prey by the predator at intermediate dispersal rates. As a consequence the regional stability of the metacommunity is increased at intermediate dispersal rates. Our results show that density-dependent dispersal and relative dispersal of species are keys to understanding the response of ecosystems to fragmentation.

  3. The effects of colonization, extinction and competition on co-existence in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Hunt, Julia J F G; Bonsall, Michael B

    2009-07-01

    1. The co-existence of competitors in heterogeneous landscapes depends on the processes of colonization, extinction and spatial scale. In this study, we explore the metapopulation dynamics of competitive interactions. 2. Rather than simply evaluating the outcome of interspecific competition in the traditional manner, we focus on both the local population dynamic effects and the regional metapopulation processes affecting species co-existence. 3. We develop a theoretical model of regional co-existence to generate a set of predictions on the patterns of colonization necessary for co-existence and the regional processes that can lead to competitive exclusion. We empirically test these predictions using metacommunity microcosms of the interaction between two bruchid beetles (Callosobruchus chinensis, Callosobruchus maculatus). 4. Using well-replicated time series of the interaction between the bruchids and statistical methods of model fitting, we show how the qualitative and quantitative pattern of interspecific competition between the bruchid beetles is shaped by the structure of the metacommunity. 5. In unlimited dispersal metacommunities, the global exclusion of the inferior competitor is shown to be influenced more by the processes associated with extinction rather than low colonization ability. In restricted dispersal metacommunities, we show how the co-existence of competitors in a spatially heterogeneous habitat (patches connected through limited dispersal) is affected by Allee effects and life-history [colonization (dispersal) - competition] trade-offs.

  4. Dynamic distributions and population declines of Golden-winged Warblers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenberg, Kenneth V.; Will, Tom; Buehler, David A.; Barker Swarthout, Sara; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Chandler, Richard

    2016-01-01

    With an estimated breeding population in 2010 of 383,000 pairs, the Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera) is among the most vulnerable and steeply declining of North American passerines. This species also has exhibited among the most dynamic breeding distributions, with populations expanding and then contracting over the past 150 years in response to regional habitat changes, interactions with closely related Blue-winged Warblers (V. cyanoptera), and possibly climate change. Since 1966, the rangewide population has declined by >70% (-2.3% per year; latest North American Breeding Bird Survey data), with much steeper declines in the Appalachian Mountains bird conservation region (-8.3% per year, 98% overall decline). Despite apparently stable or increasing populations in the northwestern part of the range (Minnesota, Manitoba), population estimates for Golden-winged Warbler have continued to decline by 18% from the decade of the 1990s to the 2000s. Population modeling predicts a further decline to roughly 37,000 individuals by 2100, with the species likely to persist only in Manitoba, Minnesota, and possibly Ontario. To delineate the present-day distribution and to identify population concentrations that could serve as conservation focus areas, we compiled rangewide survey data collected in 2000-2006 in 21 states and 3 Canadian provinces, as part of the Golden-winged Warbler Atlas Project (GOWAP), supplemented by state and provincial Breeding Bird Atlas data and more recent observations in eBird. Based on >8,000 GOWAP surveys for Golden-winged and Blue-winged warblers and their hybrids, we mapped occurrence of phenotypically pure and mixed populations in a roughly 0.5-degree grid across the species’ ranges. Hybrids and mixed Golden-winged-Blue-winged populations occurred in a relatively narrow zone across Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, southern Ontario, and northern New York. Phenotypically pure Golden-winged Warbler populations occurred north of this

  5. Dispersal Ability Determines the Role of Environmental, Spatial and Temporal Drivers of Metacommunity Structure

    PubMed Central

    Padial, André A.; Ceschin, Fernanda; Declerck, Steven A. J.; De Meester, Luc; Bonecker, Cláudia C.; Lansac-Tôha, Fabio A.; Rodrigues, Liliana; Rodrigues, Luzia C.; Train, Sueli; Velho, Luiz F. M.; Bini, Luis M.

    2014-01-01

    Recently, community ecologists are focusing on the relative importance of local environmental factors and proxies to dispersal limitation to explain spatial variation in community structure. Albeit less explored, temporal processes may also be important in explaining species composition variation in metacommunities occupying dynamic systems. We aimed to evaluate the relative role of environmental, spatial and temporal variables on the metacommunity structure of different organism groups in the Upper Paraná River floodplain (Brazil). We used data on macrophytes, fish, benthic macroinvertebrates, zooplankton, periphyton, and phytoplankton collected in up to 36 habitats during a total of eight sampling campaigns over two years. According to variation partitioning results, the importance of predictors varied among biological groups. Spatial predictors were particularly important for organisms with comparatively lower dispersal ability, such as aquatic macrophytes and fish. On the other hand, environmental predictors were particularly important for organisms with high dispersal ability, such as microalgae, indicating the importance of species sorting processes in shaping the community structure of these organisms. The importance of watercourse distances increased when spatial variables were the main predictors of metacommunity structure. The contribution of temporal predictors was low. Our results emphasize the strength of a trait-based analysis and of better defining spatial variables. More importantly, they supported the view that “all-or- nothing” interpretations on the mechanisms structuring metacommunities are rather the exception than the rule. PMID:25340577

  6. Evolution of dispersal in metacommunities of interacting species.

    PubMed

    Chaianunporn, T; Hovestadt, T

    2012-12-01

    Theoretical studies on the evolution of dispersal in metacommunities are rare despite empirical evidence suggesting that interspecific interactions can modify dispersal behaviour of organisms. To understand the role of species interactions for dispersal evolution, we utilize an individual-based model of a metacommunity where local population dynamics follows a stochastic version of the Nicholson-Bailey model and dispersal probability is an evolving trait. Our results show that in comparison with a neutral system (commensalism), parasitism promotes dispersal of hosts and parasites, while mutualism tends to reduce dispersal in both partners. Search efficiency of guests (only in the case of parasitism), dispersal mortality and external extinction risk can influence the evolution of dispersal of all partners. In systems composed of two host and two guest species, lower dispersal probabilities evolve under parasitism as well as mutualism than in one host and one guest species systems. This is because of frequency-dependent modulations of dispersal benefits emerging in such systems for all partners. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2012 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  7. Planktonic dispersal dampens temporal trophic cascades in pond metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Howeth, Jennifer G; Leibold, Mathew A

    2008-03-01

    Trophic cascades, in which changes in predation affect the biomass of lower trophic levels, vary substantially in strength and incidence. Most work to explain this variation has focused on local factors and has ignored larger regional effects. To study how metacommunity dynamics can alter trophic cascades, we constructed mesocosm metacommunities consisting of three pond communities with heterogeneous levels of fish predation and examined how planktonic dispersal rate (5-140% per week) affected biomass partitioning. Two of the three communities differed continually in the occurrence of fish and supported different but constant environments in a 'spatial trophic cascade,' while the third community supported temporally variable fish occurrence in a 'temporal trophic cascade.' We find that the presence, but the not the magnitude, of dispersal dampens temporal trophic cascades through an increase in grazer biomass. In contrast, dispersal has no effect on the strength of spatial cascades due to strong sorting pressures in the communities with constant presence or absence of fish as top predators.

  8. Metacommunity structure in a small boreal stream network.

    PubMed

    Göthe, Emma; Angeler, David G; Sandin, Leonard

    2013-03-01

    Current ecological frameworks emphasize the relative importance of local and regional drivers for structuring species communities. However, most research has been carried out in systems with discrete habitat boundaries and a clear insular structure. Stream networks deviate from the insular structure and can serve as excellent model systems for studying hierarchical community dynamics over different temporal and spatial extents. We used benthic invertebrate data from streams in a small northern Swedish catchment to test whether metacommunity dynamics change between seasons, across spatial hierarchies (i.e. at the whole catchment scale vs. the scales of first-order and second/third-order sites within the catchment) and between stream-order groups. We assessed metacommunity structure as a function of three relevant dispersal dimensions (directional downstream processes, along-stream dispersal and overland dispersal). These dispersal dimensions were related to species groups with relevant dispersal traits (flying capacity, drift propensity) and dispersal capacities (weak vs. strong) to elucidate whether the observed spatial signals were due to dispersal limitation or mass effects. Results showed complex community organization that varied between seasons, with the scale of observation, and with stream order. The importance of spatial factors and specific dispersal dimensions was highly dependent on the time of sampling and the scale of observation. The importance of environmental factors was more consistent in our analyses, but their effect on species community structure peaked at first-order sites. Our analyses of species dispersal traits were not unequivocal, but indicated that both mass effects and dispersal limitation could simultaneously contribute to the spatial signal at the scale of the whole catchment through different dispersal pathways. We conclude that the study of hierarchically organized ecosystems uncovers complex patterns of metacommunity organization

  9. Looking for hotspots of marine metacommunity connectivity: a methodological framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melià, Paco; Schiavina, Marcello; Rossetto, Marisa; Gatto, Marino; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Casagrandi, Renato

    2016-03-01

    Seascape connectivity critically affects the spatiotemporal dynamics of marine metacommunities. Understanding how connectivity patterns emerge from physically and biologically-mediated interactions is therefore crucial to conserve marine ecosystem functions and biodiversity. Here, we develop a set of biophysical models to explore connectivity in assemblages of species belonging to a typical Mediterranean community (Posidonia oceanica meadows) and characterized by different dispersing traits. We propose a novel methodological framework to synthesize species-specific results into a set of community connectivity metrics and show that spatiotemporal variation in magnitude and direction of the connections, as well as interspecific differences in dispersing traits, are key factors structuring community connectivity. We eventually demonstrate how these metrics can be used to characterize the functional role of each marine area in determining patterns of community connectivity at the basin level and to support marine conservation planning.

  10. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-01-01

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

  11. Looking for hotspots of marine metacommunity connectivity: a methodological framework

    PubMed Central

    Melià, Paco; Schiavina, Marcello; Rossetto, Marisa; Gatto, Marino; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Casagrandi, Renato

    2016-01-01

    Seascape connectivity critically affects the spatiotemporal dynamics of marine metacommunities. Understanding how connectivity patterns emerge from physically and biologically-mediated interactions is therefore crucial to conserve marine ecosystem functions and biodiversity. Here, we develop a set of biophysical models to explore connectivity in assemblages of species belonging to a typical Mediterranean community (Posidonia oceanica meadows) and characterized by different dispersing traits. We propose a novel methodological framework to synthesize species-specific results into a set of community connectivity metrics and show that spatiotemporal variation in magnitude and direction of the connections, as well as interspecific differences in dispersing traits, are key factors structuring community connectivity. We eventually demonstrate how these metrics can be used to characterize the functional role of each marine area in determining patterns of community connectivity at the basin level and to support marine conservation planning. PMID:27029563

  12. Remarks on metacommunity synchronization with application to prey-predator systems.

    PubMed

    Colombo, Alessandro; Dercole, Fabio; Rinaldi, Sergio

    2008-04-01

    The problem of synchronization of metacommunities is investigated in this article with reference to a rather general model composed of a chaotic environmental compartment driving a biological compartment. Synchronization in the absence of dispersal (i.e., the so-called Moran effect) is first discussed and shown to occur only when there is no biochaos. In other words, if the biological compartment is reinforcing environmental chaos, dispersal must be strictly above a specified threshold in order to synchronize population dynamics. Moreover, this threshold can be easily determined from the model by computing a special Lyapunov exponent. The application to prey-predator metacommunities points out the influence of frequency and coherence of the environmental noise on synchronization and agrees with all experimental studies performed on the subject.

  13. Do Small Mammals and Vegetation Metacommunity Dynamics Determine the Extent and Pattern of Treeline in the High Elevation Zone of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klinger, R. C.; Chase, J. T.

    2014-12-01

    There has been a general expectation that warming temperatures will facilitate transformation of high elevation meadows to woody dominated communities. We have been using observational and experimental approaches to analyze potential state changes of meadows and the role seed and seedling predation play in conifer expansion in the high elevation zone of the Sierra Nevada mountain range of the western United States. The observational component consists of 256 plots spanning 3 degrees of latitude and an elevation range from 3000 m to 4000 m. The experimental component consists of mammal seed predator exclosures (N = 252) allocated among three arrays at each of two sites separated by > 100 km. Three cohorts of seeds at five seed densities (1, 2, 3, 5 and 10 seeds per 0.25 m2) and one seedling cohort were placed within and immediately outside the exclosures at each site. Trend surface and distance decay analyses of community composition indicate vegetation communities in the high elevation zone have not assembled predictably along environmental or spatial gradients. Rather, we have found strong support for neutral dynamics, implying that communities assemble more stochastically as a result of dispersal limitation or priority effects. Density of mature and sapling conifers decrease as a function of distance from conifer patches, but seedling density has no relationship with distance from conifer patches. Germination of seeds outside of the exclosures was 19% compared to 65% within, and these were mainly at densities of 1 seed per 0.25 m2. None of the seeds that germinated outside the exclosures survived more than 1.5 years compared to 23% within the exclosures. Virtually all of the seedlings planted outside the exclosures were removed within a year. Collectively, these findings indicate a highly patchy rather than uniform pattern of treeline extension in the high elevation zone of the Sierra Nevada. Moreover, smaller mammals appear to be playing a critical role in

  14. Down deadwood dynamics on a severely impacted oak decline site

    Treesearch

    Martin A. Spetich

    2007-01-01

    Following a 3-year drought from 1998 to 2000, oak decline symptoms began to appear throughout many parts of the Ozark Highland region of Arkansas and Missouri. Changes in down deadwood that occurred at one site during the oak decline event are described and discussed. In 2000, 24 deadwood measurement plots 0.2025 ha (45 m by 45 m) in size were established. The down...

  15. Environmental filtering determines metacommunity structure in wetland microcrustaceans.

    PubMed

    Gascón, Stéphanie; Arranz, Ignasi; Cañedo-Argüelles, Miguel; Nebra, Alfonso; Ruhí, Albert; Rieradevall, Maria; Caiola, Nuno; Sala, Jordi; Ibàñez, Carles; Quintana, Xavier D; Boix, Dani

    2016-05-01

    Metacommunity approaches are becoming popular when analyzing factors driving species distribution at the regional scale. However, until the popularization of the variation partitioning technique it was difficult to assess the main drivers of the observed patterns (spatial or environmental). Here we propose a new framework linking the emergence of different metacommunity structures (e.g., nested, Gleasonian, Clementsian) to spatial and environmental filters. This is a novel approach that provides a more profound analysis of how both drivers could lead to similar metacommunity structures. We tested this framework on 110 sites covering a strong environmental gradient (i.e., microcrustacean assemblages organized along a salinity gradient, from freshwater to brackish water wetlands). First we identified the metacommunity structure that better fitted these microcrustacean assemblages. Then, we used hierarchical variation partitioning to quantify the relative influences of environmental filters and the distance among wetlands on the identified structure. Our results showed that under strong environmental filtering metacommunity structures were non-random. We also noted that even passive dispersers, that are supposed to be poorly spatially filtered, showed spatial signals at a large geographical scale. However, some difficulties arose when inferring biotic interactions at finer-scale spatial signals. Overall, our study shows the potential of elements of metacommunity structure combined with variation partition techniques to detect environmental drivers and broadscale patterns of metacommunity structure, and that some caution is needed when interpreting finer-scale spatial signals.

  16. General relationships between consumer dispersal, resource dispersal and metacommunity diversity.

    PubMed

    Haegeman, Bart; Loreau, Michel

    2014-02-01

    One of the central questions of metacommunity theory is how dispersal of organisms affects species diversity. Here, we show that the diversity-dispersal relationship should not be studied in isolation of other abiotic and biotic flows in the metacommunity. We study a mechanistic metacommunity model in which consumer species compete for an abiotic or biotic resource. We consider both consumer species specialised to a habitat patch, and generalist species capable of using the resource throughout the metacommunity. We present analytical results for different limiting values of consumer dispersal and resource dispersal, and complement these results with simulations for intermediate dispersal values. Our analysis reveals generic patterns for the combined effects of consumer and resource dispersal on the metacommunity diversity of consumer species, and shows that hump-shaped relationships between local diversity and dispersal are not universal. Diversity-dispersal relationships can also be monotonically increasing or multimodal. Our work is a new step towards a general theory of metacommunity diversity integrating dispersal at multiple trophic levels. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  17. Collapse of biodiversity in fractured metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Charles; Mehta, Pankaj

    2014-03-01

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

  18. From species distributions to meta-communities

    PubMed Central

    Thuiller, Wilfried; Pollock, Laura J.; Gueguen, Maya; Münkemüller, Tamara

    2015-01-01

    The extent that biotic interactions and dispersal influence species ranges and diversity patterns across scales remains an open question. Answering this question requires framing an analysis on the frontier between species distribution modeling (SDM), which ignores biotic interactions and dispersal limitation, and community ecology, which provides specific predictions on community and meta-community structure and resulting diversity patterns such as species richness and functional diversity. Using both empirical and simulated datasets, we tested whether predicted occurrences from fine-resolution SDMs provide good estimates of community structure and diversity patterns at resolutions ranging from a resolution typical of studies within reserves (250m) to that typical of a regional biodiversity study (5km). For both datasets, we show that the imprint of biotic interactions and dispersal limitation quickly vanishes when spatial resolution is reduced, which demonstrates the value of SDMs for tracking the imprint of community assembly processes across scales. PMID:26439311

  19. Habitat heterogeneity hypothesis and edge effects in model metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Hamm, Michaela; Drossel, Barbara

    2017-08-07

    Spatial heterogeneity is an inherent property of any living environment and is expected to favour biodiversity due to a broader niche space. Furthermore, edges between different habitats can provide additional possibilities for species coexistence. Using computer simulations, this study examines metacommunities consisting of several trophic levels in heterogeneous environments in order to explore the above hypotheses on a community level. We model heterogeneous landscapes by using two different sized resource pools and evaluate the combined effect of dispersal and heterogeneity on local and regional species diversity. This diversity is obtained by running population dynamics and evaluating the robustness (i.e., the fraction of surviving species). The main results for regional robustness are in agreement with the habitat heterogeneity hypothesis, as the largest robustness is found in heterogeneous systems with intermediate dispersal rates. This robustness is larger than in homogeneous systems with the same total amount of resources. We study the edge effect by arranging the two types of resources in two homogeneous blocks. Different edge responses in diversity are observed, depending on dispersal strength. Local robustness is highest for edge habitats that contain the smaller amount of resource in combination with intermediate dispersal. The results show that dispersal is relevant to correctly identify edge responses on community level. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-05-01

    Although diversity-stability relationships have been extensively studied in local ecosystems, the global biodiversity crisis calls for an improved understanding of these relationships in a spatial context. Here, we use a dynamical model of competitive metacommunities to study the relationships between species diversity and ecosystem variability across scales. We derive analytic relationships under a limiting case; these results are extended to more general cases with numerical simulations. Our model shows that, while alpha diversity decreases local ecosystem variability, beta diversity generally contributes to increasing spatial asynchrony among local ecosystems. Consequently, both alpha and beta diversity provide stabilising effects for regional ecosystems, through local and spatial insurance effects respectively. We further show that at the regional scale, the stabilising effect of biodiversity increases as spatial environmental correlation increases. Our findings have important implications for understanding the interactive effects of global environmental changes (e.g. environmental homogenisation) and biodiversity loss on ecosystem sustainability at large scales. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  1. Redox-Specialized Bacterioplankton Metacommunity in a Temperate Estuary

    PubMed Central

    Laas, Peeter; Simm, Jaak; Lips, Inga; Lips, Urmas; Kisand, Veljo; Metsis, Madis

    2015-01-01

    This study explored the spatiotemporal dynamics of the bacterioplankton community composition in the Gulf of Finland (easternmost sub-basin of the Baltic Sea) based on phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences acquired from community samples via pyrosequencing. Investigations of bacterioplankton in hydrographically complex systems provide good insight into the strategies by which microbes deal with spatiotemporal hydrographic gradients, as demonstrated by our research. Many ribotypes were closely affiliated with sequences isolated from environments with similar steep physiochemical gradients and/or seasonal changes, including seasonally anoxic estuaries. Hence, one of the main conclusions of this study is that marine ecosystems where oxygen and salinity gradients co-occur can be considered a habitat for a cosmopolitan metacommunity consisting of specialized groups occupying niches universal to such environments throughout the world. These niches revolve around functional capabilities to utilize different electron receptors and donors (including trace metal and single carbon compounds). On the other hand, temporal shifts in the bacterioplankton community composition at the surface layer were mainly connected to the seasonal succession of phytoplankton and the inflow of freshwater species. We also conclude that many relatively abundant populations are indigenous and well-established in the area. PMID:25860812

  2. Redox-specialized bacterioplankton metacommunity in a temperate estuary.

    PubMed

    Laas, Peeter; Simm, Jaak; Lips, Inga; Lips, Urmas; Kisand, Veljo; Metsis, Madis

    2015-01-01

    This study explored the spatiotemporal dynamics of the bacterioplankton community composition in the Gulf of Finland (easternmost sub-basin of the Baltic Sea) based on phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences acquired from community samples via pyrosequencing. Investigations of bacterioplankton in hydrographically complex systems provide good insight into the strategies by which microbes deal with spatiotemporal hydrographic gradients, as demonstrated by our research. Many ribotypes were closely affiliated with sequences isolated from environments with similar steep physiochemical gradients and/or seasonal changes, including seasonally anoxic estuaries. Hence, one of the main conclusions of this study is that marine ecosystems where oxygen and salinity gradients co-occur can be considered a habitat for a cosmopolitan metacommunity consisting of specialized groups occupying niches universal to such environments throughout the world. These niches revolve around functional capabilities to utilize different electron receptors and donors (including trace metal and single carbon compounds). On the other hand, temporal shifts in the bacterioplankton community composition at the surface layer were mainly connected to the seasonal succession of phytoplankton and the inflow of freshwater species. We also conclude that many relatively abundant populations are indigenous and well-established in the area.

  3. Recent advances in metacommunities and meta-ecosystem theories.

    PubMed

    Guichard, Frédéric

    2017-01-01

    Metacommunity theory has provided many insights into the general problem of local versus regional control of species diversity and relative abundance. The metacommunity framework has been extended from competitive interactions to whole food webs that can be described as spatial networks of interaction networks. Trophic metacommunity theory greatly contributed to resolving the community complexity-stability debate by predicting its dependence on the regional spatial context. The meta-ecosystem framework has since been suggested as a useful simplification of complex ecosystems to apply this spatial context to spatial flows of both individuals and matter. Reviewing the recent literature on metacommunity and meta-ecosystem theories suggests the importance of unifying theories of interaction strength into a meta-ecosystem framework that captures how the strength of spatial, species, and ecosystem fluxes are distributed across location and trophic levels. Such integration predicts important feedback between local and regional processes that drive the assembly of species, the stability of community, and the emergence of ecosystem functions, from limited spatial fluxes of individuals and (in)organic matter. These predictions are often mediated by the maintenance of environmental or endogenous fluctuations from local to regional scales that create important challenges and opportunities for the validation of metacommunity and meta-ecosystem theories and their application to conservation.

  4. Recent advances in metacommunities and meta-ecosystem theories

    PubMed Central

    Guichard, Frédéric

    2017-01-01

    Metacommunity theory has provided many insights into the general problem of local versus regional control of species diversity and relative abundance. The metacommunity framework has been extended from competitive interactions to whole food webs that can be described as spatial networks of interaction networks. Trophic metacommunity theory greatly contributed to resolving the community complexity-stability debate by predicting its dependence on the regional spatial context. The meta-ecosystem framework has since been suggested as a useful simplification of complex ecosystems to apply this spatial context to spatial flows of both individuals and matter. Reviewing the recent literature on metacommunity and meta-ecosystem theories suggests the importance of unifying theories of interaction strength into a meta-ecosystem framework that captures how the strength of spatial, species, and ecosystem fluxes are distributed across location and trophic levels. Such integration predicts important feedback between local and regional processes that drive the assembly of species, the stability of community, and the emergence of ecosystem functions, from limited spatial fluxes of individuals and (in)organic matter. These predictions are often mediated by the maintenance of environmental or endogenous fluctuations from local to regional scales that create important challenges and opportunities for the validation of metacommunity and meta-ecosystem theories and their application to conservation. PMID:28529720

  5. Persistence Increases with Diversity and Connectance in Trophic Metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Gravel, Dominique; Canard, Elsa; Guichard, Frédéric; Mouquet, Nicolas

    2011-01-01

    Background We are interested in understanding if metacommunity dynamics contribute to the persistence of complex spatial food webs subject to colonization-extinction dynamics. We study persistence as a measure of stability of communities within discrete patches, and ask how do species diversity, connectance, and topology influence it in spatially structured food webs. Methodology/Principal Findings We answer this question first by identifying two general mechanisms linking topology of simple food web modules and persistence at the regional scale. We then assess the robustness of these mechanisms to more complex food webs with simulations based on randomly created and empirical webs found in the literature. We find that linkage proximity to primary producers and food web diversity generate a positive relationship between complexity and persistence in spatial food webs. The comparison between empirical and randomly created food webs reveal that the most important element for food web persistence under spatial colonization-extinction dynamics is the degree distribution: the number of prey species per consumer is more important than their identity. Conclusions/Significance With a simple set of rules governing patch colonization and extinction, we have predicted that diversity and connectance promote persistence at the regional scale. The strength of our approach is that it reconciles the effect of complexity on stability at the local and the regional scale. Even if complex food webs are locally prone to extinction, we have shown their complexity could also promote their persistence through regional dynamics. The framework we presented here offers a novel and simple approach to understand the complexity of spatial food webs. PMID:21637749

  6. Gastropod diversification and community structuring processes in ancient Lake Ohrid: a metacommunity speciation perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauffe, T.; Albrecht, C.; Wilke, T.

    2015-09-01

    The Balkan Lake Ohrid is the oldest and most speciose freshwater lacustrine system in Europe. However, it remains unclear whether the diversification of its endemic taxa is mainly driven by neutral processes, environmental factors, or species interactions. This calls for a holistic perspective involving both evolutionary processes and ecological dynamics. Such a unifying framework - the metacommunity speciation model - considers how community assembly affects diversification and vice versa by assessing the relative contribution of the three main community assembly processes, dispersal limitation, environmental filtering, and species interaction. The current study therefore used the species-rich model taxon Gastropoda to assess how extant communities in Lake Ohrid are structured by performing process based metacommunity analyses. Specifically, the study aimed at (i) identifying the relative importance of the three community assembly processes and (ii) to test whether the importance of these individual processes changes gradually with lake depth or whether they are distinctively related to eco-zones. Based on specific simulation steps for each of the three processes, it could be demonstrated that dispersal limitation had the strongest influence on gastropod community structures in Lake Ohrid. However, it was not the exclusive assembly process but acted together with the other two processes - environmental filtering, and species interaction. In fact, the relative importance of the three community assembly processes varied both with lake depth and eco-zones, though the processes were better predicted by the latter. The study thus corroborated the high importance of dispersal limitation for both maintaining species richness in Lake Ohrid (through its impact on community structure) and generating endemic biodiversity (via its influence on diversification processes). However, according to the metacommunity speciation model, the inferred importance of environmental

  7. The Emergence of Community Structure in Metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rikvold, Per Arne

    2011-10-01

    The role of space in determining species coexistence and community structure is well established. However, previous studies mainly focus on simple competition and predation systems, and the role of mutualistic interspecies interactions is not well understood. Here we use a spatially explicit metacommunity model, in which new species enter by a mutation process, to study the effect of fitness-dependent dispersal on the structure of communities with interactions comprising mutualism, competition, and exploitation [1,2]. We find that the diversity and the structure of the interaction network undergo a nonequilibrium phase transition with increasing dispersal rate. Low/ dispersion rate favors spontaneous emergence of many dissimilar, strongly mutualistic and species- poor local communities. Due to the local dissimilarities, the global diversity is high. High/ dispersion rate promotes local biodiversity and supports similar, species-rich local communities with a wide range of interactions. The strong similarity between neighboring local communities leads to reduced global diversity.[4pt] [1] E. Filotas, M. Grant, L. Parrott, P.A. Rikvold, J. Theor. Biol. 266, 419 (2010).[0pt] [2] E. Filotas, M. Grant, L. Parrott, P.A. Rikvold, Ecol. Modell. 221, 885 (2010).

  8. Investigating the Dynamics of Wandoo Crown Decline with Time Series Landsat Imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zdunic, K.; Behn, G.; van Dongen, R.

    2012-08-01

    In the forests of south west Western Australia dramatic declines in tree health have been observed in recent years. The species Eucalyptus wando has exhibited loss of crown foliage in increasing stages of severity; this condition is referred to as wandoo crown decline and can lead to death. Determining the extent and timing of these declines is difficult on the ground due to the large distribution of E. wandoo and the observation of tree declines at a range of locations and dates over the last 40 years. Understanding the distribution, severity and timing of these declines is essential to the identification of the causes of these impacts. Investigation of time series Landsat imagery can inform on locations of crown foliage loss and the time periods these losses occurred in. Applying a vegetation index to a 20 year sequence of imagery enabled periods of decline to be identified. Employment of trend analysis of four date time series demonstrated the dynamics of wandoo crown cover. Comparisons of periods of decline with the variations of cover density over the entire image sequence facilitated the identification of possible locations and timing of wandoo crown decline impacts. Changes in crown cover observed by the imagery analysis were compared to field surveys.

  9. A crucial step toward realism: responses to climate change from an evolving metacommunity perspective.

    PubMed

    Urban, Mark C; De Meester, Luc; Vellend, Mark; Stoks, Robby; Vanoverbeke, Joost

    2012-02-01

    We need to understand joint ecological and evolutionary responses to climate change to predict future threats to biological diversity. The 'evolving metacommunity' framework emphasizes that interactions between ecological and evolutionary mechanisms at both local and regional scales will drive community dynamics during climate change. Theory suggests that ecological and evolutionary dynamics often interact to produce outcomes different from those predicted based on either mechanism alone. We highlight two of these dynamics: (i) species interactions prevent adaptation of nonresident species to new niches and (ii) resident species adapt to changing climates and thereby prevent colonization by nonresident species. The rate of environmental change, level of genetic variation, source-sink structure, and dispersal rates mediate between these potential outcomes. Future models should evaluate multiple species, species interactions other than competition, and multiple traits. Future experiments should manipulate factors such as genetic variation and dispersal to determine their joint effects on responses to climate change. Currently, we know much more about how climates will change across the globe than about how species will respond to these changes despite the profound effects these changes will have on global biological diversity. Integrating evolving metacommunity perspectives into climate change biology should produce more accurate predictions about future changes to species distributions and extinction threats.

  10. Effect of (a)synchronous light fluctuation on diversity, functional and structural stability of a marine phytoplankton metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Guelzow, Nils; Dirks, Merten; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2014-10-01

    Disentangling the mechanisms that maintain the stability of communities and ecosystem properties has become a major research focus in ecology in the face of anthropogenic environmental change. Dispersal plays a pivotal role in maintaining diversity in spatially subdivided communities, but only a few experiments have simultaneously investigated how dispersal and environmental fluctuation affect community dynamics and ecosystem stability. We performed an experimental study using marine phytoplankton species as model organisms to test these mechanisms in a metacommunity context. We established three levels of dispersal and exposed the phytoplankton to fluctuating light levels, where fluctuations were either spatially asynchronous or synchronous across patches of the metacommunity. Dispersal had no effect on diversity and ecosystem function (biomass), while light fluctuations affected both evenness and community biomass. The temporal variability of community biomass was reduced by fluctuating light and temporal beta diversity was influenced interactively by dispersal and fluctuation, whereas spatial variability in community biomass and beta diversity were barely affected by treatments. Along the establishing gradient of species richness and dominance, community biomass increased but temporal variability of biomass decreased, thus highest stability was associated with species-rich but highly uneven communities and less influenced by compensatory dynamics. In conclusion, both specific traits (dominance) and diversity (richness) affected the stability of metacommunities under fluctuating conditions.

  11. Spatio-temporal environmental correlation and population variability in simple metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Ruokolainen, Lasse

    2013-01-01

    Natural populations experience environmental conditions that vary across space and over time. This variation is often correlated between localities depending on the geographical separation between them, and different species can respond to local environmental fluctuations similarly or differently, depending on their adaptation. How this emerging structure in environmental correlation (between-patches and between-species) affects spatial community dynamics is an open question. This paper aims at a general understanding of the interactions between the environmental correlation structure and population dynamics in spatial networks of local communities (metacommunities), by studying simple two-patch, two-species systems. Three different pairs of interspecific interactions are considered: competition, consumer-resource interaction, and host-parasitoid interaction. While the results paint a relatively complex picture of the effect of environmental correlation, the interaction between environmental forcing, dispersal, and local interactions can be understood via two mechanisms. While increasing between-patch environmental correlation couples immigration and local densities (destabilising effect), the coupling between local populations under increased between-species environmental correlation can either amplify or dampen population fluctuations, depending on the patterns in density dependence. This work provides a unifying framework for modelling stochastic metacommunities, and forms a foundation for a better understanding of population responses to environmental fluctuations in natural systems.

  12. (Meta)Communication Strategies in Inclusive Classes for Deaf Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kelman, Celeste Azulay; Branco, Angela Uchoa

    2009-01-01

    How can an inclusive classroom for deaf students be successful? The use of metacommunication strategies by teachers and hearing peers seems promising. Schools that promote this approach tend to improve deaf students' psychosocial development and academic achievement. However, this is not a general rule. The present study identifies the elements of…

  13. Metacommunication, Social Pretend Play and Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Douglas, Susan; Stirling, Lesley

    2012-01-01

    This article investigates processes of engagement in social pretend play between children with autism (age range 3.6 to 7.2 years) and adult play partners, using a large corpus of conversational data. We take a qualitative discourse analytic approach to investigate the metacommunicative strategies used by the children. Our initial framework for…

  14. Reading between the Lines: Metacommunicative Aspects of Online Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hatcher, Sherry L.

    Whereas in a traditional university classroom, important features of interpersonal relationships are most readily communicated by body language or tone of voice, in electronically-mediated teaching environments, absent such real time cues, even subtle metacommunications may take on added importance and power. Although a growing number of studies…

  15. Metacommunication, Social Pretend Play and Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Douglas, Susan; Stirling, Lesley

    2012-01-01

    This article investigates processes of engagement in social pretend play between children with autism (age range 3.6 to 7.2 years) and adult play partners, using a large corpus of conversational data. We take a qualitative discourse analytic approach to investigate the metacommunicative strategies used by the children. Our initial framework for…

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  18. Coronal Dynamic Activities in the Declining Phase of a Solar Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jang, Minhwan; Woods, T. N.; Hong, Sunhak; Choe, G. S.

    2016-12-01

    It has been known that some solar activity indicators show a double-peak feature in their evolution through a solar cycle, which is not conspicuous in sunspot number. In this Letter, we investigate the high solar dynamic activity in the declining phase of the sunspot cycle by examining the evolution of polar and low-latitude coronal hole (CH) areas, splitting and merging events of CHs, and coronal mass ejections (CMEs) detected by SOHO/LASCO C3 in solar cycle 23. Although the total CH area is at its maximum near the sunspot minimum, in which polar CHs prevail, it shows a comparable second maximum in the declining phase of the cycle, in which low-latitude CHs are dominant. The events of CH splitting or merging, which are attributed to surface motions of magnetic fluxes, are also mostly populated in the declining phase of the cycle. The far-reaching C3 CMEs are also overpopulated in the declining phase of the cycle. From these results we suggest that solar dynamic activities due to the horizontal surface motions of magnetic fluxes extend far in the declining phase of the sunspot cycle.

  19. A new method for identifying rapid decline dynamics in wild vertebrate populations

    PubMed Central

    Fonzo, Martina Di; Collen, Ben; Mace, Georgina M

    2013-01-01

    Tracking trends in the abundance of wildlife populations is a sensitive method for assessing biodiversity change due to the short time-lag between human pressures and corresponding shifts in population trends. This study tests for proposed associations between different types of human pressures and wildlife population abundance decline-curves and introduces a method to distinguish decline trajectories from natural fluctuations in population time-series. First, we simulated typical mammalian population time-series under different human pressure types and intensities and identified significant distinctions in population dynamics. Based on the concavity of the smoothed population trend and the algebraic function which was the closest fit to the data, we determined those differences in decline dynamics that were consistently attributable to each pressure type. We examined the robustness of the attribution of pressure type to population decline dynamics under more realistic conditions by simulating populations under different levels of environmental stochasticity and time-series data quality. Finally, we applied our newly developed method to 124 wildlife population time-series and investigated how those threat types diagnosed by our method compare to the specific threatening processes reported for those populations. We show how wildlife population decline curves can be used to discern between broad categories of pressure or threat types, but do not work for detailed threat attributions. More usefully, we find that differences in population decline curves can reliably identify populations where pressure is increasing over time, even when data quality is poor, and propose this method as a cost-effective technique for prioritizing conservation actions between populations. PMID:23919177

  20. Dendritic connectivity controls biodiversity patterns in experimental metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrara, F.; Altermatt, F.; Rodriguez-Iturbe, I.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-04-01

    Biological communities often occur in spatially structured habitats where connectivity directly affects dispersal and metacommunity processes. Many highly diverse landscapes exhibit hierarchical spatial structures that are shaped by geomorphological processes and riverine ecosystems, among the most diverse habitats on earth, represent an outstanding example of such mechanisms. Recent theoretical work suggests that dispersal constrained by the connectivity of specific habitat structures, such as dendrites like river networks, can explain observed features of biodiversity, but direct evidence is still lacking. Furthermore, in many environments intrinsic disturbance events contribute to spatio-temporal heterogeneity. Previous microbial experiments found that spatio-temporal heterogeneity among local communities induced by disturbance and dispersal events have a strong influence on species coexistence and biodiversity. These factors, directly affecting the history of community assembly, introduce variability in community composition in term of abundances and local species richness. We investigate the effects of directional dispersal imposed by the habitat-network structure on the biodiversity of metacommunities by conducting a laboratory experiment using aquatic microcosms. Experiments were conducted in 36-well culture plates, thus imposing by construction a metacommunity structure: each well hosted a local community within the whole landscape and dispersal occurred by periodic transfer of culture medium among connected local communities, following two different geometries. Disturbance consisted of medium replacement and reflects the spatial environmental heterogeneity inherent to many natural systems. We compared spatially heterogeneous metacommunities following a river network geometry, with spatially homogeneous metacommunities, in which every local community has 2D lattice four nearest neighbors. Local dispersal in isotropic lattice landscapes homogenizes local

  1. Disturbance regime alters the impact of dispersal on alpha and beta diversity in a natural metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Vanschoenwinkel, Bram; Buschke, Falko; Brendonck, Luc

    2013-11-01

    Disturbance and dispersal are two fundamental ecological processes that shape diversity patterns, yet their interaction and the underlying mechanisms are still poorly understood, and evidence from natural systems is particularly lacking. Using an invertebrate rock pool metacommunity in South Africa as a natural model system, we studied potential interactive effects of disturbance regime and patch isolation on diversity patterns of species with contrasting dispersal modes (passive vs. active dispersal). Isolation and disturbance regime had negative synergistic effects on alpha diversity: both directly, by excluding late-successional species from isolated patches; and indirectly, by modulating establishment success of generalist predators in well-connected patches. Unimodal relationships between isolation and alpha diversity, as predicted by mass effects, were only detected for passive dispersers in frequently disturbed patches and not in active dispersers. For passive dispersers, indications for a positive effect of isolation and a negative effect of disturbance on beta diversity were found, presumably due to differences in deterministic succession and stochastic colonization-extinction dynamics among different patch types. Our findings illustrate that interactions between dispersal rates and disturbance regime are important when explaining species diversity patterns in metacommunities and support the idea that diversity in frequently disturbed habitats is more sensitive to effects of dispersal-based processes.

  2. Metacommunity models predict the local-regional species richness relationship in a natural system.

    PubMed

    Hugueny, Bernard; Cornell, Howard V; Harrison, Susan

    2007-07-01

    Many natural communities exhibit positive relationships between local and regional species richness (LSR-RSR relationships), which can be either linear or curvilinear. Previous models have shown that the form of this relationship depends on the relative rates of colonization and extinction and the sensitivity of these rates to competition. We use simple models to show that the LSR-RSR relationship also depends on the type of metacommunity structure (Levins-like or mainland-island), and our models generate a wider range of realistic forms than do most previous models. We parameterize and test our models with two independent data sets for Daphnia in rock pools on islands in Finland and Sweden. We find that the Levins-like model with competition correctly predicts the observed LSR-RSR relationship and provides the best fit to the average local species richness per island. Simulations show that our models are robust to relaxing our assumption of identical species properties. Our study is one of the first to make and successfully test quantitative predictions for how a widely studied community pattern, the LSR-RSR relationship, arises from metacommunity dynamics.

  3. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F.; McDonald, Trent L.; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E.; Richardson, Evan S.; Regehr, Eric V.; Douglas, David C.; Durner, George M.; Atwood, Todd C.; Amstrup, Steven C.

    2015-01-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark–recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25–50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606–1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies.

  4. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline.

    PubMed

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F; Mcdonald, Trent L; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E; Richardson, Evan S; Regehr, Eric V; Douglas, David C; Durner, George M; Atwood, Todd; Amstrup, Steven C

    2015-04-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark-recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25-50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606-1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies.

  5. Habitat dynamics, marine reserve status, and the decline and recovery of coral reef fish communities

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, David H; Ceccarelli, Daniela M; Evans, Richard D; Jones, Geoffrey P; Russ, Garry R

    2014-01-01

    Severe climatic disturbance events often have major impacts on coral reef communities, generating cycles of decline and recovery, and in some extreme cases, community-level phase shifts from coral-to algal-dominated states. Benthic habitat changes directly affect reef fish communities, with low coral cover usually associated with low fish diversity and abundance. No-take marine reserves (NTRs) are widely advocated for conserving biodiversity and enhancing the sustainability of exploited fish populations. Numerous studies have documented positive ecological and socio-economic benefits of NTRs; however, the ability of NTRs to ameliorate the effects of acute disturbances on coral reefs has seldom been investigated. Here, we test these factors by tracking the dynamics of benthic and fish communities, including the important fishery species, coral trout (Plectropomus spp.), over 8 years in both NTRs and fished areas in the Keppel Island group, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Two major disturbances impacted the reefs during the monitoring period, a coral bleaching event in 2006 and a freshwater flood plume in 2011. Both disturbances generated significant declines in coral cover and habitat complexity, with subsequent declines in fish abundance and diversity, and pronounced shifts in fish assemblage structure. Coral trout density also declined in response to the loss of live coral, however, the approximately 2:1 density ratio between NTRs and fished zones was maintained over time. The only post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks were within the NTRs that escaped the worst effects of the disturbances. Although NTRs had little discernible effect on the temporal dynamics of benthic or fish communities, it was evident that the post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks within some NTRs may be critically important to regional-scale population persistence and recovery. PMID:24634720

  6. Habitat dynamics, marine reserve status, and the decline and recovery of coral reef fish communities.

    PubMed

    Williamson, David H; Ceccarelli, Daniela M; Evans, Richard D; Jones, Geoffrey P; Russ, Garry R

    2014-02-01

    Severe climatic disturbance events often have major impacts on coral reef communities, generating cycles of decline and recovery, and in some extreme cases, community-level phase shifts from coral-to algal-dominated states. Benthic habitat changes directly affect reef fish communities, with low coral cover usually associated with low fish diversity and abundance. No-take marine reserves (NTRs) are widely advocated for conserving biodiversity and enhancing the sustainability of exploited fish populations. Numerous studies have documented positive ecological and socio-economic benefits of NTRs; however, the ability of NTRs to ameliorate the effects of acute disturbances on coral reefs has seldom been investigated. Here, we test these factors by tracking the dynamics of benthic and fish communities, including the important fishery species, coral trout (Plectropomus spp.), over 8 years in both NTRs and fished areas in the Keppel Island group, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Two major disturbances impacted the reefs during the monitoring period, a coral bleaching event in 2006 and a freshwater flood plume in 2011. Both disturbances generated significant declines in coral cover and habitat complexity, with subsequent declines in fish abundance and diversity, and pronounced shifts in fish assemblage structure. Coral trout density also declined in response to the loss of live coral, however, the approximately 2:1 density ratio between NTRs and fished zones was maintained over time. The only post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks were within the NTRs that escaped the worst effects of the disturbances. Although NTRs had little discernible effect on the temporal dynamics of benthic or fish communities, it was evident that the post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks within some NTRs may be critically important to regional-scale population persistence and recovery.

  7. Age-related hip proprioception declines: effects on postural sway and dynamic balance.

    PubMed

    Wingert, Jason R; Welder, Catherine; Foo, Patrick

    2014-02-01

    To evaluate the effects of age on hip proprioception, and determine whether age-related hip proprioception declines disrupt balance. Survey of proprioception and balance differences between 3 age groups. University balance laboratory. Volunteer sample of independent community-dwelling adults (N=102) without sensory or other neurologic impairments in 3 age groups: younger (mean age, 24.6y; range, 19-37y), mid-aged (mean age, 53.3y; range, 40-64y), and older adults (mean age, 76.3y; range, 65-94y). Not applicable. Hip joint position sense (JPS) and kinesthesia were measured using a custom-built device. JPS error was determined by the magnitude of matching errors during vision and no-vision conditions. Kinesthesia was evaluated by the ability to detect passive limb rotation without vision. Postural sway was assessed during static stance and measured using root mean square of center of pressure (COP) displacement and velocity of COP displacement. Clinical balance and fear of falling were assessed with the mini-Balance Evaluation Systems Test (mini-BESTest) and Activities-specific Balance Confidence Scale, respectively. Both older and mid-aged adults had significantly increased JPS error compared with younger adults (P<.05). Kinesthesia accuracy was significantly decreased in older adults compared with mid-aged and younger adults (P≤.01). Both measures of proprioception error correlated with age (P≤.001). There were no relationships between hip proprioception error and postural sway during static stance. However, older adults with lower proprioceptive error had significantly higher mini-BESTest scores of dynamic balance abilities (P=.005). These results provide evidence of significant hip proprioception declines with age. Although these declines are not related to increases in postural sway, participants with hip proprioception declines demonstrated disrupted dynamic balance, as indicated by decreased mini-BESTest scores. Copyright © 2014 American Congress of

  8. Hierarchical drivers of reef-fish metacommunity structure.

    PubMed

    MacNeil, M Aaron; Graham, Nicholas A J; Polunin, Nicholas V C; Kulbicki, Michel; Galzin, René; Harmelin-Vivien, Mireille; Rushton, Steven P

    2009-01-01

    Coral reefs are highly complex ecological systems, where multiple processes interact across scales in space and time to create assemblages of exceptionally high biodiversity. Despite the increasing frequency of hierarchically structured sampling programs used in coral-reef science, little progress has been made in quantifying the relative importance of processes operating across multiple scales. The vast majority of reef studies are conducted, or at least analyzed, at a single spatial scale, ignoring the implicitly hierarchical structure of the overall system in favor of small-scale experiments or large-scale observations. Here we demonstrate how alpha (mean local number of species), beta diversity (degree of species dissimilarity among local sites), and gamma diversity (overall species richness) vary with spatial scale, and using a hierarchical, information-theoretic approach, we evaluate the relative importance of site-, reef-, and atoll-level processes driving the fish metacommunity structure among 10 atolls in French Polynesia. Process-based models, representing well-established hypotheses about drivers of reef-fish community structure, were assembled into a candidate set of 12 hierarchical linear models. Variation in fish abundance, biomass, and species richness were unevenly distributed among transect, reef, and atoll levels, establishing the relative contribution of variation at these spatial scales to the structure of the metacommunity. Reef-fish biomass, species richness, and the abundance of most functional-groups corresponded primarily with transect-level habitat diversity and atoll-lagoon size, whereas detritivore and grazer abundances were largely correlated with potential covariates of larval dispersal. Our findings show that (1) within-transect and among-atoll factors primarily drive the relationship between alpha and gamma diversity in this reef-fish metacommunity; (2) habitat is the primary correlate with reef-fish metacommunity structure at

  9. Metacommunity versus Biogeography: A Case Study of Two Groups of Neotropical Vegetation-Dwelling Arthropods

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves-Souza, Thiago; Romero, Gustavo Q.; Cottenie, Karl

    2014-01-01

    Biogeography and metacommunity ecology provide two different perspectives on species diversity. Both are spatial in nature but their spatial scales do not necessarily match. With recent boom of metacommunity studies, we see an increasing need for clear discrimination of spatial scales relevant for both perspectives. This discrimination is a necessary prerequisite for improved understanding of ecological phenomena across scales. Here we provide a case study to illustrate some spatial scale-dependent concepts in recent metacommunity studies and identify potential pitfalls. We presented here the diversity patterns of Neotropical lepidopterans and spiders viewed both from metacommunity and biogeographical perspectives. Specifically, we investigated how the relative importance of niche- and dispersal-based processes for community assembly change at two spatial scales: metacommunity scale, i.e. within a locality, and biogeographical scale, i.e. among localities widely scattered along a macroclimatic gradient. As expected, niche-based processes dominated the community assembly at metacommunity scale, while dispersal-based processes played a major role at biogeographical scale for both taxonomical groups. However, we also observed small but significant spatial effects at metacommunity scale and environmental effects at biogeographical scale. We also observed differences in diversity patterns between the two taxonomical groups corresponding to differences in their dispersal modes. Our results thus support the idea of continuity of processes interactively shaping diversity patterns across scales and emphasize the necessity of integration of metacommunity and biogeographical perspectives. PMID:25549332

  10. Strong spatial influence on colonization rates in a pioneer zooplankton metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Frisch, Dagmar; Cottenie, Karl; Badosa, Anna; Green, Andy J

    2012-01-01

    The magnitude of community-wide dispersal is central to metacommunity models, yet dispersal is notoriously difficult to quantify in passive and cryptic dispersers such as many freshwater invertebrates. By overcoming the problem of quantifying dispersal rates, colonization rates into new habitats can provide a useful estimate of the magnitude of effective dispersal. Here we study the influence of spatial and local processes on colonization rates into new ponds that indicate differential dispersal limitation of major zooplankton taxa, with important implications for metacommunity dynamics. We identify regional and local factors that affect zooplankton colonization rates and spatial patterns in a large-scale experimental system. Our study differs from others in the unique setup of the experimental pond area by which we were able to test spatial and environmental variables at a large spatial scale. We quantified colonization rates separately for the Copepoda, Cladocera and Rotifera from samples collected over a period of 21 months in 48 newly constructed temporary ponds of 0.18-2.95 ha distributed in a restored wetland area of 2,700 ha in Doñana National Park, Southern Spain. Species richness upon initial sampling of new ponds was about one third of that in reference ponds, although the rate of detection of new species from thereon were not significantly different, probably owing to high turnover in the dynamic, temporary reference ponds. Environmental heterogeneity had no detectable effect on colonization rates in new ponds. In contrast, connectivity, space (based on latitude and longitude) and surface area were key determinants of colonization rates for copepods and cladocerans. This suggests dispersal limitation in cladocerans and copepods, but not in rotifers, possibly due to differences in propagule size and abundance.

  11. Strong Spatial Influence on Colonization Rates in a Pioneer Zooplankton Metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Frisch, Dagmar; Cottenie, Karl; Badosa, Anna; Green, Andy J.

    2012-01-01

    The magnitude of community-wide dispersal is central to metacommunity models, yet dispersal is notoriously difficult to quantify in passive and cryptic dispersers such as many freshwater invertebrates. By overcoming the problem of quantifying dispersal rates, colonization rates into new habitats can provide a useful estimate of the magnitude of effective dispersal. Here we study the influence of spatial and local processes on colonization rates into new ponds that indicate differential dispersal limitation of major zooplankton taxa, with important implications for metacommunity dynamics. We identify regional and local factors that affect zooplankton colonization rates and spatial patterns in a large-scale experimental system. Our study differs from others in the unique setup of the experimental pond area by which we were able to test spatial and environmental variables at a large spatial scale. We quantified colonization rates separately for the Copepoda, Cladocera and Rotifera from samples collected over a period of 21 months in 48 newly constructed temporary ponds of 0.18–2.95 ha distributed in a restored wetland area of 2,700 ha in Doñana National Park, Southern Spain. Species richness upon initial sampling of new ponds was about one third of that in reference ponds, although the rate of detection of new species from thereon were not significantly different, probably owing to high turnover in the dynamic, temporary reference ponds. Environmental heterogeneity had no detectable effect on colonization rates in new ponds. In contrast, connectivity, space (based on latitude and longitude) and surface area were key determinants of colonization rates for copepods and cladocerans. This suggests dispersal limitation in cladocerans and copepods, but not in rotifers, possibly due to differences in propagule size and abundance. PMID:22792241

  12. Assembly processes of gastropod community change with horizontal and vertical zonation in ancient Lake Ohrid: a metacommunity speciation perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauffe, Torsten; Albrecht, Christian; Wilke, Thomas

    2016-05-01

    The Balkan Lake Ohrid is the oldest and most diverse freshwater lacustrine system in Europe. However, it remains unclear whether species community composition, as well as the diversification of its endemic taxa, is mainly driven by dispersal limitation, environmental filtering, or species interaction. This calls for a holistic perspective involving both evolutionary processes and ecological dynamics, as provided by the unifying framework of the "metacommunity speciation model".The current study used the species-rich model taxon Gastropoda to assess how extant communities in Lake Ohrid are structured by performing process-based metacommunity analyses. Specifically, the study aimed (1) to identifying the relative importance of the three community assembly processes and (2) to test whether the importance of these individual processes changes gradually with lake depth or discontinuously with eco-zone shifts.Based on automated eco-zone detection and process-specific simulation steps, we demonstrated that dispersal limitation had the strongest influence on gastropod community composition. However, it was not the exclusive assembly process, but acted together with the other two processes - environmental filtering and species interaction. The relative importance of the community assembly processes varied both with lake depth and eco-zones, though the processes were better predicted by the latter.This suggests that environmental characteristics have a pronounced effect on shaping gastropod communities via assembly processes. Moreover, the study corroborated the high importance of dispersal limitation for both maintaining species richness in Lake Ohrid (through its impact on community composition) and generating endemic biodiversity (via its influence on diversification processes). However, according to the metacommunity speciation model, the inferred importance of environmental filtering and biotic interaction also suggests a small but significant influence of ecological

  13. Life history affects how species experience succession in pen shell metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Munguia, Pablo

    2014-04-01

    In nature, very few species are common and broadly distributed. Most species are rare and occupy few sites; this pattern is ubiquitous across habitats and taxa. In spatially structured communities (metacommunities), regional distribution and local abundance may change as the relative effects of within-habitat processes (e.g., species interactions) and among-habitat processes (e.g., dispersal) may vary through succession. A field experiment with the marine benthic inhabitants of pen shells (Atrina rigida) tested how common and rare species respond to succession and metacommunity size. I followed community development through time and partitioned species into sessile and motile based on their natural history. Rare species drive diversity patterns and are influenced by metacommunity size: there are strong abundance-distribution differences between common and rare species in large metacommunities, but motile species show lower rates of change than sessile species. In small metacommunities both common and rare species have similar changes through time; the dichotomous distinction of common and rare species is not present. Edge effects in metacommunities affect species' changes in distribution and abundance. In large metacommunities diversity is higher in edge habitats relative to small metacommunities during early succession. However, edge effects benefit motile species over time in small metacommunities showing a rapid increase in diversity. Individual mobility is sensitive to regional community size and allows individuals to sort among different communities. In contrast, sessile species do not show this edge effect. Metacommunity theory is a useful framework for understanding spatially structured communities, but the natural history of coexisting species cannot be ignored.

  14. A Neighborhood Analysis of the Consequences of Quercus suber Decline for Regeneration Dynamics in Mediterranean Forests

    PubMed Central

    Ibáñez, Beatriz; Gómez-Aparicio, Lorena; Stoll, Peter; Ávila, José M.; Pérez-Ramos, Ignacio M.; Marañón, Teodoro

    2015-01-01

    In forests, the vulnerable seedling stage is largely influenced by the canopy, which modifies the surrounding environment. Consequently, any alteration in the characteristics of the canopy, such as those promoted by forest dieback, might impact regeneration dynamics. Our work analyzes the interaction between canopy neighbors and seedlings in Mediterranean forests affected by the decline of their dominant species (Quercus suber). Our objective was to understand how the impacts of neighbor trees and shrubs on recruitment could affect future dynamics of these declining forests. Seeds of the three dominant tree species (Quercus suber, Olea europaea and Quercus canariensis) were sown in six sites during two consecutive years. Using a spatially-explicit, neighborhood approach we developed models that explained the observed spatial variation in seedling emergence, survival, growth and photochemical efficiency as a function of the size, identity, health, abundance and distribution of adult trees and shrubs in the neighborhood. We found strong neighborhood effects for all the performance estimators, particularly seedling emergence and survival. Tree neighbors positively affected emergence, independently of species identity or health. Alternatively, seedling survival was much lower in neighborhoods dominated by defoliated and dead Q. suber trees than in neighborhoods dominated by healthy trees. For the two oak species, these negative effects were consistent over the three years of the experimental seedlings. These results indicate that ongoing changes in species’ relative abundance and canopy trees’ health might alter the successional trajectories of Mediterranean oak-forests through neighbor-specific impacts on seedlings. The recruitment failure of dominant late-successional oaks in the gaps opened after Q. suber death would indirectly favor the establishment of other coexisting woody species, such as drought-tolerant shrubs. This could lead current forests to shift

  15. A neighborhood analysis of the consequences of Quercus suber decline for regeneration dynamics in Mediterranean forests.

    PubMed

    Ibáñez, Beatriz; Gómez-Aparicio, Lorena; Stoll, Peter; Ávila, José M; Pérez-Ramos, Ignacio M; Marañón, Teodoro

    2015-01-01

    In forests, the vulnerable seedling stage is largely influenced by the canopy, which modifies the surrounding environment. Consequently, any alteration in the characteristics of the canopy, such as those promoted by forest dieback, might impact regeneration dynamics. Our work analyzes the interaction between canopy neighbors and seedlings in Mediterranean forests affected by the decline of their dominant species (Quercus suber). Our objective was to understand how the impacts of neighbor trees and shrubs on recruitment could affect future dynamics of these declining forests. Seeds of the three dominant tree species (Quercus suber, Olea europaea and Quercus canariensis) were sown in six sites during two consecutive years. Using a spatially-explicit, neighborhood approach we developed models that explained the observed spatial variation in seedling emergence, survival, growth and photochemical efficiency as a function of the size, identity, health, abundance and distribution of adult trees and shrubs in the neighborhood. We found strong neighborhood effects for all the performance estimators, particularly seedling emergence and survival. Tree neighbors positively affected emergence, independently of species identity or health. Alternatively, seedling survival was much lower in neighborhoods dominated by defoliated and dead Q. suber trees than in neighborhoods dominated by healthy trees. For the two oak species, these negative effects were consistent over the three years of the experimental seedlings. These results indicate that ongoing changes in species' relative abundance and canopy trees' health might alter the successional trajectories of Mediterranean oak-forests through neighbor-specific impacts on seedlings. The recruitment failure of dominant late-successional oaks in the gaps opened after Q. suber death would indirectly favor the establishment of other coexisting woody species, such as drought-tolerant shrubs. This could lead current forests to shift into

  16. Spatial scale of similarity as an indicator of metacommunity stability in exploited marine systems.

    PubMed

    Shackell, Nancy L; Fisher, Jonathan A D; Frank, Kenneth T; Lawton, Peter

    2012-01-01

    The spatial scale of similarity among fish communities is characteristically large in temperate marine systems: connectivity is enhanced by high rates of dispersal during the larval/juvenile stages and the increased mobility of large-bodied fish. A larger spatial scale of similarity (low beta diversity) is advantageous in heavily exploited systems because locally depleted populations are more likely to be "rescued" by neighboring areas. We explored whether the spatial scale of similarity changed from 1970 to 2006 due to overfishing of dominant, large-bodied groundfish across a 300 000-km2 region of the Northwest Atlantic. Annually, similarities among communities decayed slowly with increasing geographic distance in this open system, but through time the decorrelation distance declined by 33%, concomitant with widespread reductions in biomass, body size, and community evenness. The decline in connectivity stemmed from an erosion of community similarity among local subregions separated by distances as small as 100 km. Larger fish, of the same species, contribute proportionally more viable offspring, so observed body size reductions will have affected maternal output. The cumulative effect of nonlinear maternal influences on egg/larval quality may have compromised the spatial scale of effective larval dispersal, which may account for the delayed recovery of certain member species. Our study adds strong support for using the spatial scale of similarity as an indicator of metacommunity stability both to understand the spatial impacts of exploitation and to refine how spatial structure is used in management plans.

  17. Macroevolutionary emergence of bathymetric gradients in molluscan metacommunity turnover (NE Atlantic)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tomasovych, Adam; Dominici, Stefano; Zuschin, Martin; Merle, Didier

    2014-05-01

    Although marine invertebrate lineages turn over at a higher rate in onshore than in offshore environments at macroevolutionary time scales, it remains unclear whether this pattern scales down to shorter time scales and whether it is linked to different sensitivity of onshore and offshore environments to climatic changes. We show that while turnover of molluscan metacommunities significantly declines with increasing depth between the tropical Eocene habitats and warm-temperate Pliocene habitats (>10 Myr) in the NE Atlantic Province, it does not change with depth at shorter time scales - within Eocene and Pliocene (<1 Myr). This offshore decline in long-term turnover is caused by a higher onshore extinction of genera and families and by an onshore expansion of genera and families that were frequent in offshore in the Eocene. Even when higher temporal climatic variation in shallower environments is counteracted by evolution favoring generalists at shorter scales, lineages inhabiting shallower environments should be less buffered against long-term regional-scale climatic fluctations that exceed the range of short-term climatic variability. We hypothesize that bathymetric differences in macroevolutionary turnover emerge only when assessed over temporal scales exceeding several Myr.

  18. Habitat destruction and metacommunity size in pen shell communities.

    PubMed

    Munguia, Pablo; Miller, Thomas E

    2008-11-01

    1. In spatially structured communities, habitat destruction can have two effects: first, a main effect that occurs because of the loss of habitat area within a larger region, and a secondary effect due to changes in the spatial arrangement of local communities. Changes to the spatial arrangement can, in turn, affect the migration and extinction rates within local communities. 2. Our study involved the experimental destruction of entire local communities within larger regions in natural marine microcosms. Large and small arrays of dead pen shells were created in a shallow bay in north Florida, and the colonization by both encrusting and motile species on this empty substrate were followed through time. After most species had become established, half of the large arrays were perturbed to create small arrays by removal of half the shells, simulating habitat destruction. 3. After 48 days of further community development, comparisons of the large arrays, reduced arrays and original small arrays suggested that the mechanisms by which habitat destruction affects diversity could depend upon the size of the region affected and the natural history of the species being studied. 4. Habitat destruction reduced the diversity of motile species to a level lower than that found in the undisturbed small arrays, suggesting that the species that assembled in the original large metacommunities negatively influenced the species that occurred ultimately in the converted small arrays. 5. With sessile species, habitat destruction created richness levels that were intermediate to those of small and large arrays. The initial predestruction richness appears to have had a positive effect; because sessile species cannot disperse as adults, they may not respond to significant shifts in metacommunity size later in succession. Initial metacommunity size may be important for allowing individuals to select appropriate habitats before they settle.

  19. Evolutionary dynamics of declining melanism in the peppered moth in the Netherlands.

    PubMed Central

    Brakefield, P M; Liebert, T G

    2000-01-01

    Populations of Biston betularia in the region of The Netherlands around Leiden and Rotterdam were resampled. A comparison of three sets of data for 1969-1973, 1988 and 1999 enabled a further examination of declines in melanism. Unlike parallel changes for the black carbonaria form of this species in urban regions of Britain, those inThe Netherlands involve substantial changes in frequencies of at least two of the intermediate insularia morphs as well as an increase in the non-melanic typica morph. The darkest of the three insularia morphs has shown a transitory pulse of increased frequency in The Netherlands. The dynamics are discussed in relation to the history of air pollution and to straightforward predictions about selection. PMID:11075707

  20. Evolution of dispersal in a predator-prey metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Pillai, Pradeep; Gonzalez, Andrew; Loreau, Michel

    2012-02-01

    Dispersal is crucial to allowing species inhabiting patchy or spatially subdivided habitats to persist globally despite the possibility of frequent local extinctions. Theoretical studies have repeatedly demonstrated that species that exhibit a regional metapopulation structure and are subject to increasing rates of local patch extinctions should experience strong selective pressures to disperse more rapidly despite the costs such increased dispersal would entail in terms of decreased local fitness. We extend these studies to consider how extinctions arising from predator-prey interactions affect the evolution of dispersal for species inhabiting a metacommunity. Specifically, we investigate how increasing a strong extinction-prone interaction between a predator and prey within local patches affects the evolution of each species' dispersal. We found that for the predator, as expected, evolutionarily stable strategy (ESS) dispersal rates increased monotonically in response to increasing local extinctions induced by strong predator top-down effects. Unexpectedly for the prey, however, ESS dispersal rates displayed a nonmonotonic response to increasing predator-induced extinction rates-actually decreasing for a significant range of values. These counterintuitive results arise from how extinctions resulting from trophic interactions play out at different spatial scales: interactions that increase extinction rates of both species locally can, at the same time, decrease the frequency of interaction between the prey and predator at the metacommunity scale.

  1. Infection dynamics in frog populations with different histories of decline caused by a deadly disease.

    PubMed

    Sapsford, Sarah J; Voordouw, Maarten J; Alford, Ross A; Schwarzkopf, Lin

    2015-12-01

    Pathogens can drive host population dynamics. Chytridiomycosis is a fungal disease of amphibians that is caused by the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). This pathogen has caused declines and extinctions in some host species whereas other host species coexist with Bd without suffering declines. In the early 1990s, Bd extirpated populations of the endangered common mistfrog, Litoria rheocola, at high-elevation sites, while populations of the species persisted at low-elevation sites. Today, populations have reappeared at many high-elevation sites where they presently co-exist with the fungus. We conducted a capture-mark-recapture (CMR) study of six populations of L. rheocola over 1 year, at high and low elevations. We used multistate CMR models to determine which factors (Bd infection status, site type, and season) influenced rates of frog survival, recapture, infection, and recovery from infection. We observed Bd-induced mortality of individual frogs, but did not find any significant effect of Bd infection on the survival rate of L. rheocola at the population level. Survival and recapture rates depended on site type and season. Infection rate was highest in winter when temperatures were favourable for pathogen growth, and differed among site types. The recovery rate was high (75.7-85.8%) across seasons, and did not differ among site types. The coexistence of L. rheocola with Bd suggests that (1) frog populations are becoming resistant to the fungus, (2) Bd may have evolved lower virulence, or (3) current environmental conditions may be inhibiting outbreaks of the fatal disease.

  2. The underlying processes of a soil mite metacommunity on a small scale.

    PubMed

    Dong, Chengxu; Gao, Meixiang; Guo, Chuanwei; Lin, Lin; Wu, Donghui; Zhang, Limin

    2017-01-01

    Metacommunity theory provides an understanding of how ecological processes regulate local community assemblies. However, few field studies have evaluated the underlying mechanisms of a metacommunity on a small scale through revealing the relative roles of spatial and environmental filtering in structuring local community composition. Based on a spatially explicit sampling design in 2012 and 2013, this study aims to evaluate the underlying processes of a soil mite metacommunity on a small spatial scale (50 m) in a temperate deciduous forest located at the Maoershan Ecosystem Research Station, Northeast China. Moran's eigenvector maps (MEMs) were used to model independent spatial variables. The relative importance of spatial (including trend variables, i.e., geographical coordinates, and broad- and fine-scale spatial variables) and environmental factors in driving the soil mite metacommunity was determined by variation partitioning. Mantel and partial Mantel tests and a redundancy analysis (RDA) were also used to identify the relative contributions of spatial and environmental variables. The results of variation partitioning suggested that the relatively large and significant variance was a result of spatial variables (including broad- and fine-scale spatial variables and trend), indicating the importance of dispersal limitation and autocorrelation processes. The significant contribution of environmental variables was detected in 2012 based on a partial Mantel test, and soil moisture and soil organic matter were especially important for the soil mite metacommunity composition in both years. The study suggested that the soil mite metacommunity was primarily regulated by dispersal limitation due to broad-scale and neutral biotic processes at a fine-scale and that environmental filtering might be of subordinate importance. In conclusion, a combination of metacommunity perspectives between neutral and species sorting theories was suggested to be important in the observed

  3. A crucial step toward realism: responses to climate change from an evolving metacommunity perspective

    PubMed Central

    Urban, Mark C; De Meester, Luc; Vellend, Mark; Stoks, Robby; Vanoverbeke, Joost

    2012-01-01

    We need to understand joint ecological and evolutionary responses to climate change to predict future threats to biological diversity. The ‘evolving metacommunity’ framework emphasizes that interactions between ecological and evolutionary mechanisms at both local and regional scales will drive community dynamics during climate change. Theory suggests that ecological and evolutionary dynamics often interact to produce outcomes different from those predicted based on either mechanism alone. We highlight two of these dynamics: (i) species interactions prevent adaptation of nonresident species to new niches and (ii) resident species adapt to changing climates and thereby prevent colonization by nonresident species. The rate of environmental change, level of genetic variation, source-sink structure, and dispersal rates mediate between these potential outcomes. Future models should evaluate multiple species, species interactions other than competition, and multiple traits. Future experiments should manipulate factors such as genetic variation and dispersal to determine their joint effects on responses to climate change. Currently, we know much more about how climates will change across the globe than about how species will respond to these changes despite the profound effects these changes will have on global biological diversity. Integrating evolving metacommunity perspectives into climate change biology should produce more accurate predictions about future changes to species distributions and extinction threats. PMID:25568038

  4. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and functional traits determine diatom metacommunity structuring of high mountain streams.

    PubMed

    Dong, Xiaoyu; Li, Bin; He, Fengzhi; Gu, Yuan; Sun, Meiqin; Zhang, Haomiao; Tan, Lu; Xiao, Wen; Liu, Shuoran; Cai, Qinghua

    2016-04-19

    Stream metacommunities are structured by a combination of local (environmental filtering) and regional (dispersal) processes. The unique characters of high mountain streams could potentially determine metacommunity structuring, which is currently poorly understood. Aiming at understanding how these characters influenced metacommunity structuring, we explored the relative importance of local environmental conditions and various dispersal processes, including through geographical (overland), topographical (across mountain barriers) and network (along flow direction) pathways in shaping benthic diatom communities. From a trait perspective, diatoms were categorized into high-profile, low-profile and motile guild to examine the roles of functional traits. Our results indicated that both environmental filtering and dispersal processes influenced metacommunity structuring, with dispersal contributing more than environmental processes. Among the three pathways, stream corridors were primary pathway. Deconstructive analysis suggested different responses to environmental and spatial factors for each of three ecological guilds. However, regardless of traits, dispersal among streams was limited by mountain barriers, while dispersal along stream was promoted by rushing flow in high mountain stream. Our results highlighted that directional processes had prevailing effects on metacommunity structuring in high mountain streams. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and ecological guilds contributed to a better understanding of the roles that mountains played in structuring metacommunity.

  5. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and functional traits determine diatom metacommunity structuring of high mountain streams

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Xiaoyu; Li, Bin; He, Fengzhi; Gu, Yuan; Sun, Meiqin; Zhang, Haomiao; Tan, Lu; Xiao, Wen; Liu, Shuoran; Cai, Qinghua

    2016-01-01

    Stream metacommunities are structured by a combination of local (environmental filtering) and regional (dispersal) processes. The unique characters of high mountain streams could potentially determine metacommunity structuring, which is currently poorly understood. Aiming at understanding how these characters influenced metacommunity structuring, we explored the relative importance of local environmental conditions and various dispersal processes, including through geographical (overland), topographical (across mountain barriers) and network (along flow direction) pathways in shaping benthic diatom communities. From a trait perspective, diatoms were categorized into high-profile, low-profile and motile guild to examine the roles of functional traits. Our results indicated that both environmental filtering and dispersal processes influenced metacommunity structuring, with dispersal contributing more than environmental processes. Among the three pathways, stream corridors were primary pathway. Deconstructive analysis suggested different responses to environmental and spatial factors for each of three ecological guilds. However, regardless of traits, dispersal among streams was limited by mountain barriers, while dispersal along stream was promoted by rushing flow in high mountain stream. Our results highlighted that directional processes had prevailing effects on metacommunity structuring in high mountain streams. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and ecological guilds contributed to a better understanding of the roles that mountains played in structuring metacommunity. PMID:27090223

  6. [Residue decline dynamics and safety utilization of carbendazim in cultivation of Anoectochilus roxburghii].

    PubMed

    Shao, Qing-Song; Liu, Hong-Bo; Zhang, Yu-Yun; Zhang, Ai-Lian; Li, Ming-Yan

    2014-05-01

    The paper aimed to study the residue decline dynamic and standards for safety utilization of carbendazim in roots, stems, leaves of Anoectochilus roxburghii and in growth media. Samples extracted with methanol were purified by liquid-liquid extraction and analysed by HPLC. The results showed that average rate of recovery was 82.9% - 95.7% and RSD were 2.0% - 6.3% with add of carbendazim in respectively diverse concentration, which meets inspection requirement of pesticide residue. Two kinds of dosages of carbendazim were treated, varying from recommended dosage (1.0 kg x hm(-2)) to 1.5 times recommended dosage (1.5 kg x hm(-2)). Results of two years test showed that the half-life period of carbendazim were 7.01 - 8.51 d in the growth media of A. roxburghii, 3.58 - 4.27 d in stems and 3.50 - 3.91 d in leaves, 4.93 - 5.71 d in roots. Providing max recommended residue of carbendazim in the cultivation of A. roxburghii is 0.5 mg x kg(-1), sprayed 4 times a year with the dosage of 1.0 kg x hm(-2), 28 days is proposed for the safety interval of the last pesticide application's and harvest's date.

  7. A climatic driver for abrupt mid-Holocene vegetation dynamics and the hemlock decline in New England.

    PubMed

    Foster, David R; Oswald, W Wyatt; Faison, Edward K; Doughty, Elaine D; Hansen, Barbara C S

    2006-12-01

    The mid-Holocene decline of eastern hemlock is widely viewed as the sole prehistorical example of an insect- or pathogen-mediated collapse of a North American tree species and has been extensively studied for insights into pest-host dynamics and the consequences to terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems of dominant-species removal. We report paleoecological evidence implicating climate as a major driver of this episode. Data drawn from sites across a gradient in hemlock abundance from dominant to absent demonstrate: a synchronous, dramatic decline in a contrasting taxon (oak); changes in lake sediments and aquatic taxa indicating low water levels; and one or more intervals of intense drought at regional to continental scales. These results, which accord well with emerging climate reconstructions, challenge the interpretation of a biotically driven hemlock decline and highlight the potential for climate change to generate major, abrupt dynamics in forest ecosystems.

  8. (Meta)communication strategies in inclusive classes for deaf students.

    PubMed

    Kelman, Celeste Azulay; Branco, Angela Uchôa

    2009-01-01

    How can an inclusive classroom for deaf students be successful? The use of metacommunication strategies by teachers and hearing peers seems promising. Schools that promote this approach tend to improve deaf students' psychosocial development and academic achievement. However, this is not a general rule. The present study identifies the elements of success, with the investigators basing their analysis on extensive observation of 4 bilingual classes conducted by regular education and specialized teachers. The study was conducted in 3 public elementary schools in Brasilia, Brazil. Data were collected through direct observation (156 hours) and video recording (34 hours). Results were qualitatively analyzed from a microgenetic perspective. The investigators devised 14 categories of social interaction, e.g., visual contact and responsivity, multimodal communication, co-construction of meanings, flexible use of space, and sign language instruction for hearing students.

  9. Colonization Rates in a Metacommunity Altered by Competition

    PubMed Central

    Jeganmohan, Shajini; Tucker, Caroline; Cadotte, Marc W.

    2014-01-01

    Competition and colonization are two mechanisms that are important for determining coexistence and species diversity in spatially structured habitats. However, these mechanisms may not be independent as species can exhibit behavioral or physiological changes in response to competition that alters their colonization rates. This study examines the effect of interspecific interactions on the colonization rates of four microscopic species (three ciliates and a rotifer) in aquatic microcosms. Two species showed significant reductions in the time to colonize patches when confronted with a competitor, one was a good disperser (Colpidium striatum) and the other was the slowest disperser (Philodina spp.). These results indicate that species’ colonization rates in a metacommunity can vary depending on the presence of competitors. Thus, we suggest that predictions based on heuristic tradeoffs between competition and colonization should consider effects of common biotic interactions such as competition. PMID:24551094

  10. Hydrology Affects Environmental and Spatial Structuring of Microalgal Metacommunities in Tropical Pacific Coast Wetlands

    PubMed Central

    Rojo, Carmen; Mesquita-Joanes, Francesc; Monrós, Juan S.; Armengol, Javier; Sasa, Mahmood; Bonilla, Fabián; Rueda, Ricardo; Benavent-Corai, José; Piculo, Rubén; Segura, M. Matilde

    2016-01-01

    The alternating climate between wet and dry periods has important effects on the hydrology and therefore on niche-based processes of water bodies in tropical areas. Additionally, assemblages of microorganism can show spatial patterns, in the form of a distance decay relationship due to their size or life form. We aimed to test spatial and environmental effects, modulated by a seasonal flooding climatic pattern, on the distribution of microalgae in 30 wetlands of a tropical dry forest region: the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Three surveys were conducted corresponding to the beginning, the highest peak, and the end of the hydrological year during the wet season, and species abundance and composition of planktonic and benthic microalgae was determined. Variation partitioning analysis (as explained by spatial distance or environmental factors) was applied to each seasonal dataset by means of partial redundancy analysis. Our results show that microalgal assemblages were structured by spatial and environmental factors depending on the hydrological period of the year. At the onset of hydroperiod and during flooding, neutral effects dominated community dynamics, but niche-based local effects resulted in more structured algal communities at the final periods of desiccating water bodies. Results suggest that climate-mediated effects on hydrology can influence the relative role of spatial and environmental factors on metacommunities of microalgae. Such variability needs to be accounted in order to describe accurately community dynamics in tropical coastal wetlands. PMID:26900916

  11. Hydrology Affects Environmental and Spatial Structuring of Microalgal Metacommunities in Tropical Pacific Coast Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Rojo, Carmen; Mesquita-Joanes, Francesc; Monrós, Juan S; Armengol, Javier; Sasa, Mahmood; Bonilla, Fabián; Rueda, Ricardo; Benavent-Corai, José; Piculo, Rubén; Segura, M Matilde

    2016-01-01

    The alternating climate between wet and dry periods has important effects on the hydrology and therefore on niche-based processes of water bodies in tropical areas. Additionally, assemblages of microorganism can show spatial patterns, in the form of a distance decay relationship due to their size or life form. We aimed to test spatial and environmental effects, modulated by a seasonal flooding climatic pattern, on the distribution of microalgae in 30 wetlands of a tropical dry forest region: the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Three surveys were conducted corresponding to the beginning, the highest peak, and the end of the hydrological year during the wet season, and species abundance and composition of planktonic and benthic microalgae was determined. Variation partitioning analysis (as explained by spatial distance or environmental factors) was applied to each seasonal dataset by means of partial redundancy analysis. Our results show that microalgal assemblages were structured by spatial and environmental factors depending on the hydrological period of the year. At the onset of hydroperiod and during flooding, neutral effects dominated community dynamics, but niche-based local effects resulted in more structured algal communities at the final periods of desiccating water bodies. Results suggest that climate-mediated effects on hydrology can influence the relative role of spatial and environmental factors on metacommunities of microalgae. Such variability needs to be accounted in order to describe accurately community dynamics in tropical coastal wetlands.

  12. On neutral metacommunity patterns of river basins at different scales of aggregation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Convertino, Matteo; Muneepeerakul, Rachata; Azaele, Sandro; Bertuzzo, Enrico; Rinaldo, Andrea; Rodriguez-Iturbe, Ignacio

    2009-08-01

    Neutral metacommunity models for spatial biodiversity patterns are implemented on river networks acting as ecological corridors at different resolution. Coarse-graining elevation fields (under the constraint of preserving the basin mean elevation) produce a set of reconfigured drainage networks. The hydrologic assumption made implies uniform runoff production such that each link has the same habitat capacity. Despite the universal scaling properties shown by river basins regardless of size, climate, vegetation, or exposed lithology, we find that species richness at local and regional scales exhibits resolution-dependent behavior. In addition, we investigate species-area relationships and rank-abundance patterns. The slopes of the species-area relationships, which are consistent over coarse-graining resolutions, match those found in real landscapes in the case of long-distance dispersal. The rank-abundance patterns are independent of the resolution over a broad range of dispersal length. Our results confirm that strong interactions occur between network structure and the dispersal of species and that under the assumption of neutral dynamics, these interactions produce resolution-dependent biodiversity patterns that diverge from expectations following from universal geomorphic scaling laws. Both in theoretical and in applied ecology studying how patterns change in resolution is relevant for understanding how ecological dynamics work in fragmented landscape and for sampling and biodiversity management campaigns, especially in consideration of climate change.

  13. Dynamics and genetics of a disease-driven species decline to near extinction: lessons for conservation

    PubMed Central

    Hudson, M. A.; Young, R. P.; D’Urban Jackson, J.; Orozco-terWengel, P.; Martin, L.; James, A.; Sulton, M.; Garcia, G.; Griffiths, R. A.; Thomas, R.; Magin, C.; Bruford, M. W.; Cunningham, A. A.

    2016-01-01

    Amphibian chytridiomycosis has caused precipitous declines in hundreds of species worldwide. By tracking mountain chicken (Leptodactylus fallax) populations before, during and after the emergence of chytridiomycosis, we quantified the real-time species level impacts of this disease. We report a range-wide species decline amongst the fastest ever recorded, with a loss of over 85% of the population in fewer than 18 months on Dominica and near extinction on Montserrat. Genetic diversity declined in the wild, but emergency measures to establish a captive assurance population captured a representative sample of genetic diversity from Montserrat. If the Convention on Biological Diversity’s targets are to be met, it is important to evaluate the reasons why they appear consistently unattainable. The emergence of chytridiomycosis in the mountain chicken was predictable, but the decline could not be prevented. There is an urgent need to build mitigation capacity where amphibians are at risk from chytridiomycosis. PMID:27485994

  14. Negative and matrix-dependent effects of dispersal corridors in an experimental metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Aström, Jens; Pärt, Tomas

    2013-01-01

    Negative effects of habitat fragmentation are well-known phenomena in ecology, and the use of corridors is one suggested remedy to ameliorate community disassembly. Most experiments of landscape structure, however, do not consider matrix quality and environmental conditions, despite their potential to affect both landscape permeability and population densities. For the first time in fragmented landscapes, we simultaneously investigated the effects of local disturbance, dispersal corridors, matrix quality, and environmental stress, as well as their interactions, on species richness and abundance. We used a natural micro-ecosystem of bryophyte patches with microarthropods as a model system. Contrary to expectations, there were no negative responses to fragmentation of large continuous habitats. Surprisingly, connecting fragmented patches with dispersal corridors had negative effects on the abundance and species richness of the most species-rich group, oribatid mites. It had also negative effects on the abundance of collembolans and predatory mites in landscapes with complex matrix, which was also generally detrimental. Environmental stress was detrimental for all taxa but interacted with matrix type for oribatid species richness and juvenile oribatid abundance. Our results indicate that interactions can strongly alter community responses to common explanatory factors such as fragmentation, disturbance, connectivity, and environmental quality. Future studies of metacommunity dynamics need to consider the potential for such interactions in order to produce robust predictions of spatially structured landscapes.

  15. Inferring species roles in metacommunity structure from species co-occurrence networks

    PubMed Central

    Borthagaray, Ana I.; Arim, Matías; Marquet, Pablo A.

    2014-01-01

    A long-standing question in community ecology is what determines the identity of species that coexist across local communities or metacommunity assembly. To shed light upon this question, we used a network approach to analyse the drivers of species co-occurrence patterns. In particular, we focus on the potential roles of body size and trophic status as determinants of metacommunity cohesion because of their link to resource use and dispersal ability. Small-sized individuals at low-trophic levels, and with limited dispersal potential, are expected to form highly linked subgroups, whereas large-size individuals at higher trophic positions, and with good dispersal potential, will foster the spatial coupling of subgroups and the cohesion of the whole metacommunity. By using modularity analysis, we identified six modules of species with similar responses to ecological conditions and high co-occurrence across local communities. Most species either co-occur with species from a single module or are connectors of the whole network. Among the latter are carnivorous species of intermediate body size, which by virtue of their high incidence provide connectivity to otherwise isolated communities playing the role of spatial couplers. Our study also demonstrates that the incorporation of network tools to the analysis of metacommunity ecology can help unveil the mechanisms underlying patterns and processes in metacommunity assembly. PMID:25143039

  16. Relative roles of spatial processes, natural factors and anthropogenic stressors in structuring a lake macroinvertebrate metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Cai, Yongjiu; Xu, Hao; Vilmi, Annika; Tolonen, Kimmo T; Tang, Xiangming; Qin, Boqiang; Gong, Zhijun; Heino, Jani

    2017-12-01

    Studies of aquatic metacommunities have so far been focused almost entirely on relatively isolated systems, such as a set of streams, lakes or ponds. Here, we aimed to quantify the relative importance of spatial processes, natural factors and anthropogenic stressors in structuring of a macroinvertebrate metacommunity within a large, highly-connected shallow lake system. The roles of different drivers were evaluated for the entire metacommunity, 10 trait-based deconstructed metacommunities and four common species by incorporating extensive sampling and a large number of abiotic explanatory variables. Contrary to our expectations, we found that variation in community structure among sites was mostly correlated to spatial and wind-wave variables rather than anthropogenic disturbance factors even though the lake presented strong environmental gradients associated with long-term human pressures. In addition, the relative importance of the three groups of drivers varied slightly among the deconstructed trait matrices (i.e. based on dispersal ability, feeding mode and degree of occurrence). Importantly, the distributions of the most common species showed significant and strong spatial autocorrelation, indicating the prominent role of high dispersal rate for their distributions. These findings suggest that the influences of high dispersal rates and natural disturbance may even override the roles of anthropogenic stressors in metacommunity organization in highly-connected aquatic systems. Hence, we strongly encourage that spatial processes and natural drivers are taken into account in the development of bioassessment approaches in highly-connected aquatic systems. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Inferring species roles in metacommunity structure from species co-occurrence networks.

    PubMed

    Borthagaray, Ana I; Arim, Matías; Marquet, Pablo A

    2014-10-07

    A long-standing question in community ecology is what determines the identity of species that coexist across local communities or metacommunity assembly. To shed light upon this question, we used a network approach to analyse the drivers of species co-occurrence patterns. In particular, we focus on the potential roles of body size and trophic status as determinants of metacommunity cohesion because of their link to resource use and dispersal ability. Small-sized individuals at low-trophic levels, and with limited dispersal potential, are expected to form highly linked subgroups, whereas large-size individuals at higher trophic positions, and with good dispersal potential, will foster the spatial coupling of subgroups and the cohesion of the whole metacommunity. By using modularity analysis, we identified six modules of species with similar responses to ecological conditions and high co-occurrence across local communities. Most species either co-occur with species from a single module or are connectors of the whole network. Among the latter are carnivorous species of intermediate body size, which by virtue of their high incidence provide connectivity to otherwise isolated communities playing the role of spatial couplers. Our study also demonstrates that the incorporation of network tools to the analysis of metacommunity ecology can help unveil the mechanisms underlying patterns and processes in metacommunity assembly. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  18. Dynamic patterns and ecological impacts of declining ocean pH in a high-resolution multi-year dataset

    PubMed Central

    Wootton, J. Timothy; Pfister, Catherine A.; Forester, James D.

    2008-01-01

    Increasing global concentrations of atmospheric CO2 are predicted to decrease ocean pH, with potentially severe impacts on marine food webs, but empirical data documenting ocean pH over time are limited. In a high-resolution dataset spanning 8 years, pH at a north-temperate coastal site declined with increasing atmospheric CO2 levels and varied substantially in response to biological processes and physical conditions that fluctuate over multiple time scales. Applying a method to link environmental change to species dynamics via multispecies Markov chain models reveals strong links between in situ benthic species dynamics and variation in ocean pH, with calcareous species generally performing more poorly than noncalcareous species in years with low pH. The models project the long-term consequences of these dynamic changes, which predict substantial shifts in the species dominating the habitat as a consequence of both direct effects of reduced calcification and indirect effects arising from the web of species interactions. Our results indicate that pH decline is proceeding at a more rapid rate than previously predicted in some areas, and that this decline has ecological consequences for near shore benthic ecosystems. PMID:19033205

  19. Dynamic patterns and ecological impacts of declining ocean pH in a high-resolution multi-year dataset.

    PubMed

    Wootton, J Timothy; Pfister, Catherine A; Forester, James D

    2008-12-02

    Increasing global concentrations of atmospheric CO(2) are predicted to decrease ocean pH, with potentially severe impacts on marine food webs, but empirical data documenting ocean pH over time are limited. In a high-resolution dataset spanning 8 years, pH at a north-temperate coastal site declined with increasing atmospheric CO(2) levels and varied substantially in response to biological processes and physical conditions that fluctuate over multiple time scales. Applying a method to link environmental change to species dynamics via multispecies Markov chain models reveals strong links between in situ benthic species dynamics and variation in ocean pH, with calcareous species generally performing more poorly than noncalcareous species in years with low pH. The models project the long-term consequences of these dynamic changes, which predict substantial shifts in the species dominating the habitat as a consequence of both direct effects of reduced calcification and indirect effects arising from the web of species interactions. Our results indicate that pH decline is proceeding at a more rapid rate than previously predicted in some areas, and that this decline has ecological consequences for near shore benthic ecosystems.

  20. Multiple Cues for Winged Morph Production in an Aphid Metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Mehrparvar, Mohsen; Zytynska, Sharon E.; Weisser, Wolfgang W.

    2013-01-01

    Environmental factors can lead individuals down different developmental pathways giving rise to distinct phenotypes (phenotypic plasticity). The production of winged or unwinged morphs in aphids is an example of two alternative developmental pathways. Dispersal is paramount in aphids that often have a metapopulation structure, where local subpopulations frequently go extinct, such as the specialized aphids on tansy (Tanacetum vulgare). We conducted various experiments to further understand the cues involved in the production of winged dispersal morphs by the two dominant species of the tansy aphid metacommunity, Metopeurum fuscoviride and Macrosiphoniella tanacetaria. We found that the ant-tended M. fuscoviride produced winged individuals predominantly at the beginning of the season while the untended M. tanacetaria produced winged individuals throughout the season. Winged mothers of both species produced winged offspring, although in both species winged offspring were mainly produced by unwinged females. Crowding and the presence of predators, effects already known to influence wing production in other aphid species, increased the percentage of winged offspring in M. tanacetaria, but not in M. fuscoviride. We find there are also other factors (i.e. temporal effects) inducing the production of winged offspring for natural aphid populations. Our results show that the responses of each aphid species are due to multiple wing induction cues. PMID:23472179

  1. Mutualistic Interactions and Community Structure in Biological Metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rikvold, Per Arne; Filotas, Elise; Grant, Martin; Parrott, Lael

    2011-03-01

    The role of space in determining species coexistence and community structure is well established. However, previous studies mainly focus on simple competition and predation systems, and the role of mutualistic interspecies interactions is not well understood. Here we use a spatially explicit metacommunity model, in which new species enter by a mutation process, to study the effect of fitness-dependent dispersal on the structure of communities with interactions comprising mutualism, competition, and exploitation. We find that the diversity and interaction network undergo a nonequilibrium phase transition with increasing dispersal rate. Low dispersion rate favors spontaneous emergence of many dissimilar, strongly mutualistic and species-poor local communities. Due to the local dissimilarities, the global diversity is high. High dispersion rate promotes local biodiversity and supports similar, species-rich local communities with a wide range of interactions. The strong similarity between neighboring local communities leads to reduced global diversity. Supported by NSERC (Canada), FQRNT (Québec), NSF (U.S.A.)

  2. Sudden Oak Death in redwood forests: vegetation dynamics in the wake of tanoak decline

    Treesearch

    Benjamin Ramage; Kevin O’Hara

    2010-01-01

    Numerous lines of inquiry have concluded that tanoak (Lithocarpus densiflorus) will continue to experience drastic population declines and may even disappear entirely from redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) forests as a result of the exotic disease sudden oak death (SOD) (Maloney and others 2005, McPherson and others 2005,...

  3. Metacommunity structuring in stream networks: roles of dispersal mode, distance type, and regional environmental context

    PubMed Central

    Grönroos, Mira; Heino, Jani; Siqueira, Tadeu; Landeiro, Victor L; Kotanen, Juho; Bini, Luis M

    2013-01-01

    Within a metacommunity, both environmental and spatial processes regulate variation in local community structure. The strength of these processes may vary depending on species traits (e.g., dispersal mode) or the characteristics of the regions studied (e.g., spatial extent, environmental heterogeneity). We studied the metacommunity structuring of three groups of stream macroinvertebrates differing in their overland dispersal mode (passive dispersers with aquatic adults; passive dispersers with terrestrial adults; active dispersers with terrestrial adults). We predicted that environmental structuring should be more important for active dispersers, because of their better ability to track environmental variability, and that spatial structuring should be more important for species with aquatic adults, because of stronger dispersal limitation. We sampled a total of 70 stream riffle sites in three drainage basins. Environmental heterogeneity was unrelated to spatial extent among our study regions, allowing us to examine the effects of these two factors on metacommunity structuring. We used partial redundancy analysis and Moran's eigenvector maps based on overland and watercourse distances to study the relative importance of environmental control and spatial structuring. We found that, compared with environmental control, spatial structuring was generally negligible, and it did not vary according to our predictions. In general, active dispersers with terrestrial adults showed stronger environmental control than the two passively dispersing groups, suggesting that the species dispersing actively are better able to track environmental variability. There were no clear differences in the results based on watercourse and overland distances. The variability in metacommunity structuring among basins was not related to the differences in the environmental heterogeneity and spatial extent. Our study emphasized that (1) environmental control is prevailing in stream metacommunities

  4. The myth of cognitive decline: non-linear dynamics of lifelong learning.

    PubMed

    Ramscar, Michael; Hendrix, Peter; Shaoul, Cyrus; Milin, Petar; Baayen, Harald

    2014-01-01

    As adults age, their performance on many psychometric tests changes systematically, a finding that is widely taken to reveal that cognitive information-processing capacities decline across adulthood. Contrary to this, we suggest that older adults'; changing performance reflects memory search demands, which escalate as experience grows. A series of simulations show how the performance patterns observed across adulthood emerge naturally in learning models as they acquire knowledge. The simulations correctly identify greater variation in the cognitive performance of older adults, and successfully predict that older adults will show greater sensitivity to fine-grained differences in the properties of test stimuli than younger adults. Our results indicate that older adults'; performance on cognitive tests reflects the predictable consequences of learning on information-processing, and not cognitive decline. We consider the implications of this for our scientific and cultural understanding of aging. Copyright © 2013 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  5. Decline of recent seabirds inferred from a composite 1000-year record of population dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Liqiang; Liu, Xiaodong; Wu, Libin; Sun, Liguang; Zhao, Jinjun; Chen, Lin

    2016-01-01

    Based on three ornithogenic sediment profiles and seabird subfossils therein from the Xisha Islands, South China Sea, the relative population size of seabirds over the past 1000 years was reconstructed using reflectance spectrum. Here we present an apparent increase and subsequent decline of seabirds on these islands in the South China Sea. Seabird populations peaked during the Little Ice Age (LIA, 1400–1850 AD), implying that the cool climate during the LIA appears to have been more favorable to seabirds on the Xisha Islands in the South China Sea. Climate change partly explains the recent decrease in seabird populations over the past 150 years, but the significant decline and almost complete disappearance thereof on most of the Xisha Islands is probably attributable to human disturbance. Our study reveals the increasing impact of anthropogenic activities on seabird population in recent times. PMID:27748366

  6. Decline of recent seabirds inferred from a composite 1000-year record of population dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Liqiang; Liu, Xiaodong; Wu, Libin; Sun, Liguang; Zhao, Jinjun; Chen, Lin

    2016-10-01

    Based on three ornithogenic sediment profiles and seabird subfossils therein from the Xisha Islands, South China Sea, the relative population size of seabirds over the past 1000 years was reconstructed using reflectance spectrum. Here we present an apparent increase and subsequent decline of seabirds on these islands in the South China Sea. Seabird populations peaked during the Little Ice Age (LIA, 1400–1850 AD), implying that the cool climate during the LIA appears to have been more favorable to seabirds on the Xisha Islands in the South China Sea. Climate change partly explains the recent decrease in seabird populations over the past 150 years, but the significant decline and almost complete disappearance thereof on most of the Xisha Islands is probably attributable to human disturbance. Our study reveals the increasing impact of anthropogenic activities on seabird population in recent times.

  7. Microcosms metacommunities in river network: niche effects and biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giometto, A.; Carrara, F.; Altermatt, F.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-04-01

    Many highly diverse landscapes exhibit hierarchical spatial structures that are shaped by geomorphological processes. Riverine ecosystems, among the most diverse habitats on Earth, represent an outstanding example of such mechanisms. In these landscapes, in which connectivity directly influences metacommunity processes, habitat capacity contributes to control biodiversity at several levels. A previous study has already highlighted the effect of connectivity on species distribution at local and regional scales, but habitat capacity was kept uniform. We studied the interaction of connectivity and habitat capacity in an aquatic microcosm experiment, in which microbial communities were grown in 36-well culture plates connected by dispersal. Dispersal occurred by periodic transfer of culture medium among connected local communities, following river network topology. The effect of habitat capacity in these landscapes was investigated by comparing three different spatial configurations of local community volumes: 1. Power law distributed volumes, according to drainage area. 2. Spatial random permutation of the volumes in the above configuration. 3. Equal distribution of volumes (preserving the total volume with respect to the above configurations). The net effect of habitat capacity on community composition was isolated in a control treatment in which communities were kept isolated for the whole duration of the experiment. In all treatments we observed that varying volumes induced niche effects: some protozoan species preferentially occupied larger nodes (systematically in isolation). Nevertheless, there is evidence that position along the network played a significant role in shaping biodiversity patterns. Size distribution measurements for each community were taken with a CASY cell counter, and species abundances data on log scale precision were collected by direct microscope observation.

  8. Natural selection for costly nutrient recycling in simulated microbial metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Boyle, Richard A; Williams, Hywel T P; Lenton, Timothy M

    2012-11-07

    Recycling of essential nutrients occurs at scales from microbial communities to global biogeochemical cycles, often in association with ecological interactions in which two or more species utilise each others' metabolic by-products. However, recycling loops may be unstable; sequences of reactions leading to net recycling may be parasitised by side-reactions causing nutrient loss, while some reactions in any closed recycling loop are likely to be costly to participants. Here we examine the stability of nutrient recycling loops in an individual-based ecosystem model based on microbial functional types that differ in their metabolism. A supplied nutrient is utilised by a "source" functional type, generating a secondary nutrient that is subsequently used by two other types-a "mutualist" that regenerates the initial nutrient at a growth rate cost, and a "parasite" that produces a refractory waste product but does not incur any additional cost. The three functional types are distributed across a metacommunity in which separate patches are linked by a stochastic diffusive migration process. Regions of high mutualist abundance feature high levels of nutrient recycling and increased local population density leading to greater export of individuals, allowing the source-mutualist recycling loop to spread across the system. Individual-level selection favouring parasites is balanced by patch-level selection for high productivity, indirectly favouring mutualists due to the synergistic productivity benefits of the recycling loop they support. This suggests that multi-level selection may promote nutrient cycling and thereby help to explain the apparent ubiquity and stability of nutrient recycling in nature.

  9. Count data, detection probabilities, and the demography, dynamics, distribution, and decline of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Benedikt R

    2003-08-01

    The evidence for amphibian population declines is based on count data that were not adjusted for detection probabilities. Such data are not reliable even when collected using standard methods. The formula C = Np (where C is a count, N the true parameter value, and p is a detection probability) relates count data to demography, population size, or distributions. With unadjusted count data, one assumes a linear relationship between C and N and that p is constant. These assumptions are unlikely to be met in studies of amphibian populations. Amphibian population data should be based on methods that account for detection probabilities.

  10. Language in the aging brain: the network dynamics of cognitive decline and preservation.

    PubMed

    Shafto, Meredith A; Tyler, Lorraine K

    2014-10-31

    Language is a crucial and complex lifelong faculty, underpinned by dynamic interactions within and between specialized brain networks. Whereas normal aging impairs specific aspects of language production, most core language processes are robust to brain aging. We review recent behavioral and neuroimaging evidence showing that language systems remain largely stable across the life span and that both younger and older adults depend on dynamic neural responses to linguistic demands. Although some aspects of network dynamics change with age, there is no consistent evidence that core language processes are underpinned by different neural networks in younger and older adults.

  11. The effects of temporal resolution on species turnover and on testing metacommunity models.

    PubMed

    Tomasových, Adam; Kidwell, Susan M

    2010-05-01

    Patterns of low temporal turnover in species composition found within paleoecological time series contrast with the high turnover predicted by neutral metacommunity models and thus have been used to support nonneutral models. However, these predictions assume temporal resolution on the scale of a season or year, whereas individual fossil assemblages are typically time averaged to decadal or centennial timescales. We simulate the effects of time averaging by building time-averaged assemblages from local dispersal-limited, nonaveraged assemblages and compare the predicted turnover with observed patterns in mollusk and ostracod fossil records. Time averaging substantially reduces temporal turnover such that neutral predictions converge with those of trade-off and density-dependent models, and it tends to decrease species dominance and increase the proportion of rare species. Observed turnover rates are comparable to an appropriately scaled neutral model: patterns of high community stability can be produced or reinforced by time averaging alone. The community attributes of local time-averaged assemblages approach those of the metacommunity. Time-averaged assemblages are thus unlikely to capture attributes arising from processes operating at small spatial scales, but they should do well at capturing the turnover and diversity of metacommunities and thus will be a valuable basis for analyzing the large-scale processes that determine metacommunity evolution.

  12. Risk Communication, Metacommunication, and Rhetorical Stases in the Aspen-EPA Superfund Controversy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stratman, James F.; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Explores the relationship between current theoretical definitions of risk communication, the unique national role that EPA plays in defining health and environmental risks, and possible explanations for EPA's inability to persuade Aspen, Colorado, to accept a cleanup plan. Explores ownership messages conveyed through metacommunication conflict…

  13. Emergence and decline of scientific paradigms in a dynamic complex network.

    PubMed

    Yao, Chao; Zhang, Mei

    2013-01-01

    We study the idea spreading process by extending a recent model proposed by Bornholdt et al. [Phys. Rev. Lett. 106, 058701 (2011)] to the population on a two-dimensional square area either in the presence of static topological randomness or in which agents are allowed to freely move. We find that the static topological randomness induced by the random distribution of agents in the square area disfavors the common pattern of scientific paradigms, which is characterized by quick rise and slow decline of an arbitrary dominant idea. However, the common pattern of scientific paradigms is recovered when the movement of agents is enabled. In addition, we find that, when the moving speed of agents is low, the average lifetime of a dominant idea displays an optimal behavior. In contrast, the evolution of the model is no more sensitive to the movement speed once it is high enough.

  14. Factors affecting population dynamics of leaf beetles in a subarctic region: The interplay between climate warming and pollution decline.

    PubMed

    Zvereva, Elena L; Hunter, Mark D; Zverev, Vitali; Kozlov, Mikhail V

    2016-10-01

    Understanding the mechanisms by which abiotic drivers, such as climate and pollution, influence population dynamics of animals is important for our ability to predict the population trajectories of individual species under different global change scenarios. We monitored four leaf beetle species (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) feeding on willows (Salix spp.) in 13 sites along a pollution gradient in subarctic forests of north-western Russia from 1993 to 2014. During a subset of years, we also measured the impacts of natural enemies and host plant quality on the performance of one of these species, Chrysomela lapponica. Spring and fall temperatures increased by 2.5-3°C during the 21-year observation period, while emissions of sulfur dioxide and heavy metals from the nickel-copper smelter at Monchegorsk decreased fivefold. However, contrary to predictions of increasing herbivory with climate warming, and in spite of discovered increase in host plant quality with increase in temperatures, none of the beetle species became more abundant during the past 20years. No directional trends were observed in densities of either Phratora vitellinae or Plagiodera versicolora, whereas densities of both C. lapponica and Gonioctena pallida showed a simultaneous rapid 20-fold decline in the early 2000s, remaining at very low levels thereafter. Time series analysis and model selection indicated that these abrupt population declines were associated with decreases in aerial emissions from the smelter. Observed declines in the population densities of C. lapponica can be explained by increases in mortality from natural enemies due to the combined action of climate warming and declining pollution. This pattern suggests that at least in some tri-trophic systems, top-down factors override bottom-up effects and govern the impacts of environmental changes on insect herbivores. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. The role of dispersal mode and habitat specialization for metacommunity structure of shallow beach invertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Lucena-Moya, Paloma; Jokinen, Henri; Ollus, Victoria; Wennhage, Håkan; Villnäs, Anna; Norkko, Alf

    2017-01-01

    Metacommunity ecology recognizes the interplay between local and regional patterns in contributing to spatial variation in community structure. In aquatic systems, the relative importance of such patterns depends mainly on the potential connectivity of the specific system. Thus, connectivity is expected to increase in relation to the degree of water movement, and to depend on the specific traits of the study organism. We examined the role of environmental and spatial factors in structuring benthic communities from a highly connected shallow beach network using a metacommunity approach. Both factors contributed to a varying degree to the structure of the local communities suggesting that environmental filters and dispersal-related mechanisms played key roles in determining abundance patterns. We categorized benthic taxa according to their dispersal mode (passive vs. active) and habitat specialization (generalist vs. specialist) to understand the relative importance of environment and dispersal related processes for shallow beach metacommunities. Passive dispersers were predicted by a combination of environmental and spatial factors, whereas active dispersers were not spatially structured and responded only to local environmental factors. Generalists were predicted primarily by spatial factors, while specialists were only predicted by local environmental factors. The results suggest that the role of the spatial component in metacommunity organization is greater in open coastal waters, such as shallow beaches, compared to less-connected environmentally controlled aquatic systems. Our results also reveal a strong environmental role in structuring the benthic metacommunity of shallow beaches. Specifically, we highlight the sensitivity of shallow beach macrofauna to environmental factors related to eutrophication proxies. PMID:28196112

  16. Greenhouse gas impacts of declining hydrocarbon resource quality: Depletion, dynamics, and process emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Adam Robert

    This dissertation explores the environmental and economic impacts of the transition to hydrocarbon substitutes for conventional petroleum (SCPs). First, mathematical models of oil depletion are reviewed, including the Hubbert model, curve-fitting methods, simulation models, and economic models. The benefits and drawbacks of each method are outlined. I discuss the predictive value of the models and our ability to determine if one model type works best. I argue that forecasting oil depletion without also including substitution with SCPs results in unrealistic projections of future energy supply. I next use information theoretic techniques to test the Hubbert model of oil depletion against five other asymmetric and symmetric curve-fitting models using data from 139 oil producing regions. I also test the assumptions that production curves are symmetric and that production is more bell-shaped in larger regions. Results show that if symmetry is enforced, Gaussian production curves perform best, while if asymmetry is allowed, asymmetric exponential models prove most useful. I also find strong evidence for asymmetry: production declines are consistently less steep than inclines. In order to understand the impacts of oil depletion on GHG emissions, I developed the Regional Optimization Model for Emissions from Oil Substitutes (ROMEO). ROMEO is an economic optimization model of investment and production of fuels. Results indicate that incremental emissions (with demand held constant) from SCPs could be 5-20 GtC over the next 50 years. These results are sensitive to the endowment of conventional oil and not sensitive to a carbon tax. If demand can vary, total emissions could decline under a transition because the higher cost of SCPs lessens overall fuel consumption. Lastly, I study the energetic and environmental characteristics of the in situ conversion process, which utilizes electricity to generate liquid hydrocarbons from oil shale. I model the energy inputs and outputs

  17. Population dynamics of the critically endangered golden lancehead pitviper, Bothrops insularis: stability or decline?

    PubMed

    Guimarães, Murilo; Munguía-Steyer, Roberto; Doherty, Paul F; Martins, Marcio; Sawaya, Ricardo J

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about vital rates of snakes generally because of the difficulty in collecting data. Here we used a robust design mark-recapture model to estimate survival, behavioral effects on capture probability, temporary emigration, abundance and test the hypothesis of population decline in the golden lancehead pitviper, Bothrops insularis, an endemic and critically endangered species from southeastern Brazil. We collected data at irregular intervals over ten occasions from 2002 to 2010. Survival was slightly higher in the wet season than in the dry season. Temporal emigration was high, indicating the importance of accounting for this parameter both in the sampling design and modeling. No behavioral effects were detected on capture probability. We detected an average annual population decrease (λ = 0.93, CI = 0.47-1.38) during the study period, but estimates included high uncertainty, and caution in interpretation is needed. We discuss the potential effects of the illegal removal of individuals and the implications of the vital rates obtained for the future persistence and conservation of this endemic, endangered species.

  18. Prey dispersal rate affects prey species composition and trait diversity in response to multiple predators in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Howeth, Jennifer G; Leibold, Mathew A

    2010-09-01

    1. Recent studies indicate that large-scale spatial processes can alter local community structuring mechanisms to determine local and regional assemblages of predators and their prey. In metacommunities, this may occur when the functional diversity represented in the regional predator species pool interacts with the rate of prey dispersal among local communities to affect prey species diversity and trait composition at multiple scales. 2. Here, we test for effects of prey dispersal rate and spatially and temporally heterogeneous predation from functionally dissimilar predators on prey structure in pond mesocosm metacommunities. An experimental metacommunity consisted of three pond mesocosm communities supporting two differentially size-selective invertebrate predators and their zooplankton prey. In each metacommunity, two communities maintained constant predation and supported either Gyrinus sp. (Coleoptera) or Notonecta ungulata (Hemiptera) predators generating a spatial prey refuge while the third community supported alternating predation from Gyrinus sp. and N. ungulata generating a temporal prey refuge. Mesocosm metacommunities were connected at either low (0.7% day(-1)) or high (10% day(-1)) planktonic prey dispersal. The diversity, composition and body size of zooplankton prey were measured at local and regional (metacommunity) scales. 3. Metacommunities experiencing the low prey dispersal rate supported the greatest regional prey species diversity (H') and evenness (J'). Neither dispersal rate nor predation regime affected local prey diversity or evenness. The spatial prey refuge at low dispersal maintained the largest difference in species composition and body size diversity between communities under Gyrinus and Notonecta predation, suggesting that species sorting was operating at the low dispersal rate. There was no effect of dispersal rate on species diversity or body size distribution in the temporal prey refuge. 4. The frequency distribution, but not

  19. Organic Seston Dynamics in Upland Neotropical Streams: Implications for Amphibian Declines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peterson, S. D.; Colon-Gaud, C.; Whiles, M. R.; Hunte-Brown, M.; Connelly, S.; Kilham, S.; Pringle, C. M.; Lips, K. R.; Brenes, R.

    2005-05-01

    Organic seston represents food for filter feeders and a mechanism for downstream transport of energy and nutrients. As part of a study assessing the ecological impacts of stream-breeding anuran extirpations, we examined seston dynamics in 2 stream reaches with tadpoles (El Cope) and 2 without (Fortuna) in the Panamanian uplands. All reaches are high gradient with annual average discharge ranging from 46-102 L/s. Samples were collected multiple times per month at various discharges, sieved into fine (<754μm, >98μm) and very fine (<98μm, >1.6μm) fractions, and processed to estimate ash-free dry mass (AFDM), total C, and total N. Average annual concentrations ranged from 0.52- 2.51 mg/L (fine) and 2.04-3.14 mg/L (very fine), and total export ranged from 0.27-7,981 mg/s across all streams. On average, very fine particles comprised 78% of export from El Cope sites and 61% from Fortuna streams. Average total N export ranged from 5.32-30.53 mg/s in El Cope sites and 1.71-6.04 mg/s at Fortuna. Average particle quality (C/N) in El Cope streams was higher (7.6) than Fortuna streams (11.5). Lower export of very fine particles and lower seston quality in Fortuna streams suggests the loss of tadpoles may influence seston dynamics and quality in these systems.

  20. Dynamics of Social Group Competition: Modeling the Decline of Religious Affiliation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abrams, Daniel M.; Yaple, Haley A.; Wiener, Richard J.

    2011-08-01

    When social groups compete for members, the resulting dynamics may be understandable with mathematical models. We demonstrate that a simple ordinary differential equation (ODE) model is a good fit for religious shift by comparing it to a new international data set tracking religious nonaffiliation. We then generalize the model to include the possibility of nontrivial social interaction networks and examine the limiting case of a continuous system. Analytical and numerical predictions of this generalized system, which is robust to polarizing perturbations, match those of the original ODE model and justify its agreement with real-world data. The resulting predictions highlight possible causes of social shift and suggest future lines of research in both physics and sociology.

  1. Fertility decline and the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality

    PubMed Central

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2015-01-01

    In the course of demographic transitions (DTs), two large-scale trends become apparent: (i) the broadly positive association between wealth, status and fertility tends to reverse, and (ii) wealth inequalities increase and then temporarily decrease. We argue that these two broad patterns are linked, through a diversification of reproductive strategies that subsequently converge as populations consume more, become less self-sufficient and increasingly depend on education as a route to socio-economic status. We examine these links using data from 22 mid-transition communities in rural Poland. We identify changing relationships between fertility and multiple measures of wealth, status and inequality. Wealth and status generally have opposing effects on fertility, but these associations vary by community. Where farming remains a viable livelihood, reproductive strategies typical of both pre- and post-DT populations coexist. Fertility is lower and less variable in communities with lower wealth inequality, and macro-level patterns in inequality are generally reproduced at the community level. Our results provide a detailed insight into the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality that accompany DTs at the community level where peoples' social and economic interactions typically take place. We find no evidence to suggest that women with the most educational capital gain wealth advantages from reducing fertility, nor that higher educational capital delays the onset of childbearing in this population. Rather, these patterns reflect changing reproductive preferences during a period of profound economic and social change, with implications for our understanding of reproductive and socio-economic inequalities in transitioning populations. PMID:25833859

  2. Fertility decline and the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality.

    PubMed

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2015-05-07

    In the course of demographic transitions (DTs), two large-scale trends become apparent: (i) the broadly positive association between wealth, status and fertility tends to reverse, and (ii) wealth inequalities increase and then temporarily decrease. We argue that these two broad patterns are linked, through a diversification of reproductive strategies that subsequently converge as populations consume more, become less self-sufficient and increasingly depend on education as a route to socio-economic status. We examine these links using data from 22 mid-transition communities in rural Poland. We identify changing relationships between fertility and multiple measures of wealth, status and inequality. Wealth and status generally have opposing effects on fertility, but these associations vary by community. Where farming remains a viable livelihood, reproductive strategies typical of both pre- and post-DT populations coexist. Fertility is lower and less variable in communities with lower wealth inequality, and macro-level patterns in inequality are generally reproduced at the community level. Our results provide a detailed insight into the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality that accompany DTs at the community level where peoples' social and economic interactions typically take place. We find no evidence to suggest that women with the most educational capital gain wealth advantages from reducing fertility, nor that higher educational capital delays the onset of childbearing in this population. Rather, these patterns reflect changing reproductive preferences during a period of profound economic and social change, with implications for our understanding of reproductive and socio-economic inequalities in transitioning populations.

  3. Season-specific and guild-specific effects of anthropogenic landscape modification on metacommunity structure of tropical bats.

    PubMed

    Cisneros, Laura M; Fagan, Matthew E; Willig, Michael R

    2015-03-01

    Fragmentation per se due to human land conversion is a landscape-scale phenomenon. Accordingly, assessment of distributional patterns across a suite of potentially connected communities (i.e. metacommunity structure) is an appropriate approach for understanding the effects of landscape modification and complements the plethora of fragmentation studies that have focused on local community structure. To date, metacommunity structure within human-modified landscapes has been assessed with regard to nestedness along species richness gradients. This is problematic because there is little support that species richness gradients are associated with the factors moulding species distributions. More importantly, many alternative patterns are possible, and different patterns may manifest during different seasons and for different guilds because of variation in resource availability and resource requirements of taxa. We determined the best-fit metacommunity structure of a phyllostomid bat assemblage, frugivore ensemble, and gleaning animalivore ensemble within a human-modified landscape in the Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica during the dry and wet seasons to elucidate important structuring mechanisms. Furthermore, we identified the landscape characteristics associated with the latent gradient underlying metacommunity structure. We discriminated among multiple metacommunity structures by assessing coherence, range turnover, and boundary clumping of an ordinated site-by-species matrix. We identified the landscape characteristics associated with the latent gradient underlying metacommunity structure via hierarchical partitioning. Metacommunity structure was never nested nor structured along a richness gradient. The phyllostomid assemblage and frugivore ensemble exhibited Gleasonian structure (range turnover along a common gradient) during the dry season and Clementsian structure (range turnover and shared boundaries along a common gradient) during the wet season. Distance

  4. Prior Dietary Practices and Connections to a Human Gut Microbial Metacommunity Alter Responses to Diet Interventions.

    PubMed

    Griffin, Nicholas W; Ahern, Philip P; Cheng, Jiye; Heath, Andrew C; Ilkayeva, Olga; Newgard, Christopher B; Fontana, Luigi; Gordon, Jeffrey I

    2017-01-11

    Ensuring that gut microbiota respond consistently to prescribed dietary interventions, irrespective of prior dietary practices (DPs), is critical for effective nutritional therapy. To address this, we identified DP-associated gut bacterial taxa in individuals either practicing chronic calorie restriction with adequate nutrition (CRON) or without dietary restrictions (AMER). When transplanted into gnotobiotic mice, AMER and CRON microbiota responded predictably to CRON and AMER diets but with variable response strengths. An individual's microbiota is connected to other individuals' communities ("metacommunity") by microbial exchange. Sequentially cohousing AMER-colonized mice with two different groups of CRON-colonized mice simulated metacommunity effects, resulting in enhanced responses to a CRON diet intervention and changes in several metabolic features in AMER animals. This response was driven by an influx of CRON DP-associated taxa. Certain DPs may impair responses to dietary interventions, necessitating the introduction of diet-responsive bacterial lineages present in other individuals and identified using the strategies described.

  5. Predators temper the relative importance of stochastic processes in the assembly of prey metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Chase, Jonathan M; Biro, Elizabeth G; Ryberg, Wade A; Smith, Kevin G

    2009-11-01

    Communities assemble through a combination of stochastic processes, which can make environmentally similar communities divergent (high beta-diversity), and deterministic processes, which can make environmentally similar communities convergent (low beta-diversity). Top predators can influence both stochasticity (e.g. colonization and extinction events) and determinism (e.g. size of the realized species pool), in community assembly, and thus their net effect is unknown. We investigated how predatory fish influenced the scaling of prey diversity in ponds at local and regional spatial scales. While fish reduced both local and regional richness, their effects were markedly more intense at the regional scale. Underlying this result was that the presence of fish made localities within metacommunities more similar in their community composition (lower beta-diversity), suggesting that fish enhance the deterministic, relative to the stochastic, components of community assembly. Thus, the presence of predators can alter fundamental mechanisms of community assembly and the scaling of diversity within metacommunities.

  6. Elements of metacommunity structure in Amazonian Zygoptera among streams under different spatial scales and environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Brasil, Leandro Schlemmer; Vieira, Thiago Bernardi; de Oliveira-Junior, José Max Barbosa; Dias-Silva, Karina; Juen, Leandro

    2017-05-01

    An important aspect of conservation is to understand the founding elements and characteristics of metacommunities in natural environments, and the consequences of anthropogenic disturbance on these patterns. In natural Amazonian environments, the interfluves of the major rivers play an important role in the formation of areas of endemism through the historical isolation of species and the speciation process. We evaluated elements of metacommunity structure for Zygoptera (Insecta: Odonata) sampled in 93 Amazonian streams distributed in two distinct biogeographic regions (areas of endemism). Of sampled streams, 43 were considered to have experienced negligible anthropogenic impacts, and 50 were considered impacted by anthropogenic activities. Our hypothesis was that preserved ("negligible impact") streams would present a Clementsian pattern, forming clusters of distinct species, reflecting the biogeographic pattern of the two regions, and that anthropogenic streams would present random patterns of metacommunity, due to the loss of more sensitive species and dominance of more tolerant species, which have higher dispersal ability and environmental tolerance. In negligible impact streams, the Clementsian pattern reflected a strong biogeographic pattern, which we discuss considering the areas of endemism of Amazonian rivers. As for communities in human-impacted streams, a biotic homogenization was evident, in which rare species were suppressed and the most common species had become hyper-dominant. Understanding the mechanisms that trigger changes in metacommunities is an important issue for conservation, because they can help create mitigation measures for the impacts of anthropogenic activities on biological communities, and so should be expanded to studies using other taxonomic groups in both tropical and temperate systems, and, wherever possible, at multiple spatial scales.

  7. Oak Decline

    Treesearch

    Vernon Ammon; T. Evan Nebeker; Ted H. Filer; Francis I. McCracken; J. D. Solomon; H. E. Kennedy

    1989-01-01

    Occurrence of decline and mortality in this nation's hardwood forests has been documented in reports for the past 130 years. From 1856 through 1981, more than 26 decline events were reported from eight eastern states affecting almost all species of oaks. Fourteen factors have been implicated as either primary or secondary agents responsible for decline and...

  8. Oak Decline

    Treesearch

    Philip M. Wargo; David R. Houston; Leon A. LaMadeleine

    1983-01-01

    Periodic occurrences of decline and death of oaks over widespread areas have been recorded since 1900. These outbreaks, variously named oak decline, oak dieback, or oak mortality, are caused by a complex interaction of environmental stresses and pests and given the name oak decline.

  9. Metacommunity and phylogenetic structure determine wildlife and zoonotic infectious disease patterns in time and space

    PubMed Central

    Suzán, Gerardo; García-Peña, Gabriel E; Castro-Arellano, Ivan; Rico, Oscar; Rubio, André V; Tolsá, María J; Roche, Benjamin; Hosseini, Parviez R; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Murray, Kris A; Zambrana-Torrelio, Carlos; Vittecoq, Marion; Bailly, Xavier; Aguirre, A Alonso; Daszak, Peter; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Helene; Mills, James N; Guégan, Jean-Francois

    2015-01-01

    The potential for disease transmission at the interface of wildlife, domestic animals and humans has become a major concern for public health and conservation biology. Research in this subject is commonly conducted at local scales while the regional context is neglected. We argue that prevalence of infection at local and regional levels is influenced by three mechanisms occurring at the landscape level in a metacommunity context. First, (1) dispersal, colonization, and extinction of pathogens, reservoir or vector hosts, and nonreservoir hosts, may be due to stochastic and niche-based processes, thus determining distribution of all species, and then their potential interactions, across local communities (metacommunity structure). Second, (2) anthropogenic processes may drive environmental filtering of hosts, nonhosts, and pathogens. Finally, (3) phylogenetic diversity relative to reservoir or vector host(s), within and between local communities may facilitate pathogen persistence and circulation. Using a metacommunity approach, public heath scientists may better evaluate the factors that predispose certain times and places for the origin and emergence of infectious diseases. The multidisciplinary approach we describe fits within a comprehensive One Health and Ecohealth framework addressing zoonotic infectious disease outbreaks and their relationship to their hosts, other animals, humans, and the environment. PMID:25750713

  10. Metacommunity and phylogenetic structure determine wildlife and zoonotic infectious disease patterns in time and space.

    PubMed

    Suzán, Gerardo; García-Peña, Gabriel E; Castro-Arellano, Ivan; Rico, Oscar; Rubio, André V; Tolsá, María J; Roche, Benjamin; Hosseini, Parviez R; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Murray, Kris A; Zambrana-Torrelio, Carlos; Vittecoq, Marion; Bailly, Xavier; Aguirre, A Alonso; Daszak, Peter; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Helene; Mills, James N; Guégan, Jean-Francois

    2015-02-01

    The potential for disease transmission at the interface of wildlife, domestic animals and humans has become a major concern for public health and conservation biology. Research in this subject is commonly conducted at local scales while the regional context is neglected. We argue that prevalence of infection at local and regional levels is influenced by three mechanisms occurring at the landscape level in a metacommunity context. First, (1) dispersal, colonization, and extinction of pathogens, reservoir or vector hosts, and nonreservoir hosts, may be due to stochastic and niche-based processes, thus determining distribution of all species, and then their potential interactions, across local communities (metacommunity structure). Second, (2) anthropogenic processes may drive environmental filtering of hosts, nonhosts, and pathogens. Finally, (3) phylogenetic diversity relative to reservoir or vector host(s), within and between local communities may facilitate pathogen persistence and circulation. Using a metacommunity approach, public heath scientists may better evaluate the factors that predispose certain times and places for the origin and emergence of infectious diseases. The multidisciplinary approach we describe fits within a comprehensive One Health and Ecohealth framework addressing zoonotic infectious disease outbreaks and their relationship to their hosts, other animals, humans, and the environment.

  11. Identifying the core seed bank of a complex boreal bacterial metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-González, Clara; Niño-García, Juan Pablo; Kembel, Steven W; Del Giorgio, Paul A

    2017-09-01

    Seed banks are believed to contribute to compositional changes within and across microbial assemblages, but the application of this concept to natural communities remains challenging. Here we describe the core seed bank of a bacterial metacommunity from a boreal watershed, using the spatial distribution of bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTUs) across 223 heterogeneous terrestrial, aquatic and phyllosphere bacterial assemblages. Taxa were considered potential seeds if they transitioned from rare to abundant somewhere within the metacommunity and if they were ubiquitous and able to persist under unfavorable conditions, the latter assessed by checking their presence in three deeply sequenced samples (one soil, one river and one lake, 2.2-3 million reads per sample). We show that only a small fraction (13%) of all detected OTUs constitute a metacommunity seed bank that is shared between all terrestrial and aquatic communities, but not by phyllosphere assemblages, which seem to recruit from a different taxa pool. Our results suggest directional recruitment driven by the flow of water in the landscape, since most aquatic sequences were associated to OTUs found in a single deeply-sequenced soil sample, but only 45% of terrestrial sequences belonged to OTUs found in the two deeply-sequenced aquatic communities. Finally, we hypothesize that extreme rarity, and its interplay with water residence time and growth rates, may further constrain the size of the potential seed bank.

  12. Effects of Total Resources, Resource Ratios, and Species Richness on Algal Productivity and Evenness at Both Metacommunity and Local Scales

    PubMed Central

    Gamfeldt, Lars; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2011-01-01

    The study of the interrelationship between productivity and biodiversity is a major research field in ecology. Theory predicts that if essential resources are heterogeneously distributed across a metacommunity, single species may dominate productivity in individual metacommunity patches, but a mixture of species will maximize productivity across the whole metacommunity. It also predicts that a balanced supply of resources within local patches should favor species coexistence, whereas resource imbalance would favor the dominance of one species. We performed an experiment with five freshwater algal species to study the effects of total supply of resources, their ratios, and species richness on biovolume production and evenness at the scale of both local patches and metacommunities. Generally, algal biovolume increased, whereas algal resource use efficiency (RUE) and evenness decreased with increasing total supply of resources in mixed communities containing all five species. In contrast to predictions for biovolume production, the species mixtures did not outperform all monocultures at the scale of metacommunities. In other words, we observed no general transgressive overyielding. However, RUE was always higher in mixtures than predicted from monocultures, and analyses indicate that resource partitioning or facilitation in mixtures resulted in higher-than-expected productivity at high resource supply. Contrasting our predictions for the local scale, balanced supply of resources did not generally favor higher local evenness, however lowest evenness was confined to patches with the most imbalanced supply. Thus, our study provides mixed support for recent theoretical advancements to understand biodiversity-productivity relationships. PMID:21755016

  13. Intellectual Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guilford, J.P.

    In investigations of decline of intellectual status with age, cross-sectional and longitudinal studies give divergent results--the former show almost universal declines in test performances among older groups while the latter often show gains. Although few structure-of-intellect (SI) factors have been explored in relation to adult ages, two kinds…

  14. Intellectual Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guilford, J.P.

    In investigations of decline of intellectual status with age, cross-sectional and longitudinal studies give divergent results--the former show almost universal declines in test performances among older groups while the latter often show gains. Although few structure-of-intellect (SI) factors have been explored in relation to adult ages, two kinds…

  15. Bathing birds bias beta-diversity: frequent dispersal by gulls homogenizes fauna in a rock-pool metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Simonis, Joseph L; Ellis, Julie C

    2014-06-01

    Metacommunity theory generally predicts that regional dispersal of organisms among local habitat patches should influence spatial patterns of species diversity. In particular, increased dispersal rates are generally expected to increase local (alpha) diversity, yet homogenize local communities across the region (decreasing beta-diversity), resulting in no change in regional (gamma) diversity. Although the effect of dispersal on alpha-diversity has garnered much experimental attention, the influence of dispersal rates on diversity at larger spatial scales (beta and gamma) is poorly understood. Furthermore, these theoretical predictions are not well tested in the field, where other environmental factors (e.g., habitat size, resource density) likely also influence species diversity. Here, we used a system of freshwater rock pools on Appledore Island, Maine, USA, to test the effects of dispersal rate on species diversity in metacommunities. The pools exist in clusters (metacommunities) that experience different levels of dispersal imposed by gulls (Larus spp.), which we show to be frequent passive dispersers of rock-pool invertebrates. Although previous research has suggested that waterbirds may disperse aquatic invertebrates, our study is the first to quantify the rate at which such dispersal occurs and determine its effects on species diversity. In accordance with theory, we found that metacommunities experiencing higher dispersal rates had significantly more homogeneous local communities (reduced beta-diversity) and that gamma-diversity was not influenced by dispersal rate. Contrary to theoretical predictions, however, alpha-diversity in the rock pools was not significantly influenced by dispersal. Rather, local diversity was significantly positively related to local habitat size, and both alpha- and gamma-diversity were influenced by the physicochemical environment of the pools. These results provide an important field test of metacommunity theory, highlighting how

  16. Immigration rates and species niche characteristics affect the relationship between species richness and habitat heterogeneity in modeled meta-communities.

    PubMed

    Bar-Massada, Avi

    2015-01-01

    The positive relationship between habitat heterogeneity and species richness is a cornerstone of ecology. Recently, it was suggested that this relationship should be unimodal rather than linear due to a tradeoff between environmental heterogeneity and population sizes. Increased environmental heterogeneity will decrease effective habitat sizes, which in turn will increase the rate of local species extinctions. The occurrence of the unimodal richness-heterogeneity relationship at the habitat scale was confirmed in both empirical and theoretical studies. However, it is unclear whether it can occur at broader spatial scales, for meta-communities in diverse and patchy landscapes. Here, I used a spatially explicit meta-community model to quantify the roles of two species-level characteristics, niche width and immigration rates, on the type of the richness-heterogeneity relationship at the landscape scale. I found that both positive and unimodal richness-heterogeneity relationships can occur in meta-communities in patchy landscapes. The type of the relationship was affected by the interactions between inter-patch immigration rates and species' niche widths. Unimodal relationships were prominent in meta-communities comprising species with wide niches but low inter-patch immigration rates. In contrast, meta-communities consisting of species with narrow niches and high immigration rates exhibited positive relationships. Meta-communities comprising generalist species are therefore likely to exhibit unimodal richness-heterogeneity relationships as long as low immigration rates prevent rescue effects and patches are small. The richness-heterogeneity relationship at the landscape scale is dictated by species' niche widths and inter-patch immigration rates. These immigration rates, in turn, depend on the interaction between species dispersal capabilities and habitat connectivity, highlighting the roles of both species traits and landscape structure in generating the richness

  17. SYNCSA--R tool for analysis of metacommunities based on functional traits and phylogeny of the community components.

    PubMed

    Debastiani, Vanderlei J; Pillar, Valério D

    2012-08-01

    SYNCSA is an R package for the analysis of metacommunities based on functional traits and phylogeny of the community components. It offers tools to calculate several matrix correlations that express trait-convergence assembly patterns, trait-divergence assembly patterns and phylogenetic signal in functional traits at the species pool level and at the metacommunity level. SYNCSA is a package for the R environment, under a GPL-2 open-source license and freely available on CRAN official web server for R (http://cran.r-project.org). vanderleidebastiani@yahoo.com.br.

  18. Fuzziness and Heterogeneity of Benthic Metacommunities in a Complex Transitional System

    PubMed Central

    Curiel, Daniele; Cossarini, Gianpiero; Melaku Canu, Donata; Rismondo, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    We propose an extension to the metacommunity (MC) concept and a novel operational methodology that has the potential to refine the analysis of MC structure at different hierarchical levels. We show that assemblages of species can also be seen as assemblages of abstract subregional habitat-related metacommunities (habMCs). This intrinsically fuzzy concept recognizes the existence of habMCs that are typically associated with given habitats, while allowing for the mixing and superposition of different habMCs in all sites and for boundaries among subregions that are neither spatially sharp nor temporally constant. The combination of fuzzy clustering and direct gradient analysis permits us to 1) objectively identify the number of habMCs that are present in a region as well as their spatial distributions and relative weights at different sites; 2) associate different subregions with different biological communities; and 3) quantitatively assess the affinities between habMCs and physical, morphological, biogeochemical, and environmental properties, thereby enabling an analysis of the roles and relative importance of various environmental parameters in shaping the spatial structure of a metacommunity. This concept and methodology offer the possibility of integrating the continuum and community unit concepts and of developing the concept of a habMC ecological niche. This approach also facilitates the practical application of the MC concept, which are not currently in common use. Applying these methods to macrophytobenthic and macrozoobenthic hard-substrate assemblages in the Venetian Lagoon, we identified a hierarchical organization of macrobenthic communities that associated different habMCs with different habitats. Our results demonstrate that different reference terms should be applied to different subregions to assess the ecological status of a waterbody and show that a combination of several environmental parameters describes the spatial heterogeneity of benthic

  19. The evolution of the competition–dispersal trade-off affects α- and β-diversity in a heterogeneous metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Laroche, Fabien; Jarne, Philippe; Perrot, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Difference in dispersal ability is a key driver of species coexistence in metacommunities. However, the available frameworks for interpreting species diversity patterns in natura often overlook trade-offs and evolutionary constraints associated with dispersal. Here, we build a metacommunity model accounting for dispersal evolution and a competition–dispersal trade-off. Depending on the distribution of carrying capacities among communities, species dispersal values are distributed either around a single strategy (evolutionarily stable strategy, ESS), or around distinct strategies (evolutionary branching, EB). We show that limited dispersal generates spatial aggregation of dispersal traits in ESS and EB scenarios, and that the competition–dispersal trade-off strengthens the pattern in the EB scenario. Importantly, individuals in larger (respectively (resp.) smaller) communities tend to harbour lower (resp. higher) dispersal, especially under the EB scenario. We explore how dispersal evolution affects species diversity patterns by comparing those from our model to the predictions of a neutral metacommunity model. The most marked difference is detected under EB, with distinctive values of both α- and β-diversity (e.g. the dissimilarity in species composition between small and large communities was significantly larger than neutral predictions). We conclude that, from an empirical perspective, jointly assessing community carrying capacity with species dispersal strategies should improve our understanding of diversity patterns in metacommunities. PMID:27122564

  20. The evolution of the competition-dispersal trade-off affects α- and β-diversity in a heterogeneous metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Laroche, Fabien; Jarne, Philippe; Perrot, Thomas; Massol, Francois

    2016-04-27

    Difference in dispersal ability is a key driver of species coexistence in metacommunities. However, the available frameworks for interpreting species diversity patterns in natura often overlook trade-offs and evolutionary constraints associated with dispersal. Here, we build a metacommunity model accounting for dispersal evolution and a competition-dispersal trade-off. Depending on the distribution of carrying capacities among communities, species dispersal values are distributed either around a single strategy (evolutionarily stable strategy, ESS), or around distinct strategies (evolutionary branching, EB). We show that limited dispersal generates spatial aggregation of dispersal traits in ESS and EB scenarios, and that the competition-dispersal trade-off strengthens the pattern in the EB scenario. Importantly, individuals in larger (respectively (resp.) smaller) communities tend to harbour lower (resp. higher) dispersal, especially under the EB scenario. We explore how dispersal evolution affects species diversity patterns by comparing those from our model to the predictions of a neutral metacommunity model. The most marked difference is detected under EB, with distinctive values of both α- and β-diversity (e.g. the dissimilarity in species composition between small and large communities was significantly larger than neutral predictions). We conclude that, from an empirical perspective, jointly assessing community carrying capacity with species dispersal strategies should improve our understanding of diversity patterns in metacommunities.

  1. Dispersal scales up the biodiversity–productivity relationship in an experimental source-sink metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Venail, Patrick A.; Maclean, R. Craig; Meynard, Christine N.; Mouquet, Nicolas

    2010-01-01

    The influence of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning is a major concern of ecological research. However, the biodiversity–ecosystem functioning relationship has very often been studied independently from the mechanisms allowing coexistence. By considering the effects of dispersal and niche partitioning on diversity, the metacommunity perspective predicts a spatial scale-dependence of the shape of the relationship. Here, we present experimental evidence of such scale-dependent patterns. After approximately 500 generations of diversification in a spatially heterogeneous environment, we measured functional diversity (FD) and productivity at both local and regional scales in experimental source-sink metacommunities of the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens SBW25. At the regional scale, environmental heterogeneity yielded high levels of FD and we observed a positive correlation between diversity and productivity. At the local scale, intermediate dispersal increased local FD through a mass effect but there was no correlation between diversity and productivity. These experimental results underline the importance of considering the mechanisms maintaining biodiversity and the appropriate spatial scales in understanding its relationship with ecosystem functioning. PMID:20335204

  2. Ecological convergence in a rocky intertidal shore metacommunity despite high spatial variability in recruitment regimes

    PubMed Central

    Caro, Andrés U.; Navarrete, Sergio A.; Castilla, Juan Carlos

    2010-01-01

    In open ecological systems, community structure can be determined by physically modulated processes such as the arrival of individuals from a regional pool and by local biological interactions. There is debate centering on whether niche differentiation and local interactions among species are necessary to explain macroscopic community patterns or whether the patterns can be generated by the neutral interplay of dispersal and stochastic demography among ecologically identical species. Here we evaluate how much of the observed spatial variation within a rocky intertidal metacommunity along 800 km of coastline can be explained by drift in the structure of recruits across 15 local sites. Our results show that large spatial changes in recruitment do not explain the observed spatial variation in adult local structure and that, in comparison with the large drift in structure of recruits, local adult communities converged to a common, although not unique, structure across the region. Although there is no unique adult community structure in the entire region, the observed variation represents only a small subset of the possible structures that would be expected from passive recruitment drift. Thus, in this diverse system our results do not support the idea that rocky intertidal metacommunities are structured by neutral mechanisms. PMID:20937867

  3. Crying wolf? Biosecurity and metacommunication in the context of the 2009 swine flu pandemic.

    PubMed

    Nerlich, Brigitte; Koteyko, Nelya

    2012-07-01

    This article explores how the 2009 pandemic of swine flu (H1N1) intersected with issues of biosecurity in the context of an increasing entanglement between the spread of disease and the spread of information. Drawing on research into metacommunication, the article studies the rise of communication about ways in which swine flu was communicated, both globally and locally, during the pandemic. It examines and compares two corpora of texts, namely UK newspaper articles and blogs, written between 28 March and 11 June 2009, that is, the period from the start of the outbreak till the WHO announcement of the pandemic. Findings show that the interaction between traditional and digital media as well as the interaction between warnings about swine flu and previous warnings about other epidemics contributed to a heightened discourse of blame and counter-blame but also, more surprisingly, self-blame and reflections about the role the media in pandemic communication. The consequences of this increase in metacommunication for research into crisis communication are explored.

  4. Declining Enrollments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wakefield, Howard E.; Donnelly, Richard A.

    The five sections in this loose-leaf binder are intended to provide Wisconsin school board members with information necessary for decision-making on the problem of declining enrollment. Section 1 contains information about the extent of the problem and summarizes recent trends in population and school enrollments in the nation and the state.…

  5. The Dynamics of Son Preference, Technology Diffusion, and Fertility Decline Underlying Distorted Sex Ratios at Birth: A Simulation Approach.

    PubMed

    Kashyap, Ridhi; Villavicencio, Francisco

    2016-10-01

    We present a micro-founded simulation model that formalizes the "ready, willing, and able" framework, originally used to explain historical fertility decline, to the practice of prenatal sex selection. The model generates sex ratio at birth (SRB) distortions from the bottom up and attempts to quantify plausible levels, trends, and interactions of son preference, technology diffusion, and fertility decline that underpin SRB trajectories at the macro level. Calibrating our model for South Korea, we show how even as the proportion with a preference for sons was declining, SRB distortions emerged due to rapid diffusion of prenatal sex determination technology combined with small but growing propensities to abort at low birth parities. Simulations reveal that relatively low levels of son preference (about 20 % to 30 % wanting one son) can result in skewed SRB levels if technology diffuses early and steadily, and if fertility falls rapidly to encourage sex-selective abortion at low parities. Model sensitivity analysis highlights how the shape of sex ratio trajectories is particularly sensitive to the timing and speed of prenatal sex-determination technology diffusion. The maximum SRB levels reached in a population are influenced by how the readiness to abort rises as a function of the fertility decline.

  6. A landscape-scale field experiment reveals the importance of dispersal in a resource-limited metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, Jill; Downes, Barbara J

    2017-02-01

    Dispersal may play a strong role in driving species diversity across landscapes. Theoretically, dispersal permits species to remain extant within a metacommunity, even if they are periodically excluded from some local communities. Field tests of dispersal effects are difficult, and most non-experimental data suggest that environmental conditions play the predominant role in setting species diversity. However, most such studies cannot differentiate between patterns caused primarily by dispersal constraints vs. abiotic factors vs. biotic constraints (e.g., priority effects). In 22 km of a sand-bed stream in southeastern Australia, strong longitudinal gradients in the abiotic environment and detritus densities (resources) mean that downstream locations have abiotic conditions that may be physiologically stressful, low resource densities and low species diversities. We experimentally increased the retention of detritus over 40 m stream lengths along the gradient, with other sites acting as controls. If dispersal is constrained, or abiotic or biotic factors primarily control community structure, then we predicted that increasing resources would result in no change in species composition. Alternatively, if dispersal is common, we predicted that species diversity would increase at treatment sites through colonization by species able to tolerate abiotic conditions downstream and able to invade established communities. Invertebrates were sampled prior to manipulation and then four times (1, 4, 9 and 12 months) following manipulation. Detrital standing stocks increased by an order of magnitude at treatment sites. Over 1 yr, invertebrate densities and species richness also increased in treatment sites. Effect sizes were strong in middle and downstream areas, which were colonized by upstream species. Thus, faunal composition of the downstream treatment sites became more similar to upstream locales, and β-diversity across treatment sites declined as α-diversity increased

  7. Scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities using functional diversity and community deconstruction approaches.

    PubMed

    Silva, Pedro Giovâni da; Hernández, Malva Isabel Medina

    2015-01-01

    Community structure is driven by mechanisms linked to environmental, spatial and temporal processes, which have been successfully addressed using metacommunity framework. The relative importance of processes shaping community structure can be identified using several different approaches. Two approaches that are increasingly being used are functional diversity and community deconstruction. Functional diversity is measured using various indices that incorporate distinct community attributes. Community deconstruction is a way to disentangle species responses to ecological processes by grouping species with similar traits. We used these two approaches to determine whether they are improvements over traditional measures (e.g., species composition, abundance, biomass) for identification of the main processes driving dung beetle (Scarabaeinae) community structure in a fragmented mainland-island landscape in southern Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We sampled five sites in each of four large forest areas, two on the mainland and two on the island. Sampling was performed in 2012 and 2013. We collected abundance and biomass data from 100 sampling points distributed over 20 sampling sites. We studied environmental, spatial and temporal effects on dung beetle community across three spatial scales, i.e., between sites, between areas and mainland-island. The γ-diversity based on species abundance was mainly attributed to β-diversity as a consequence of the increase in mean α- and β-diversity between areas. Variation partitioning on abundance, biomass and functional diversity showed scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities. We identified two major groups of responses among 17 functional groups. In general, environmental filters were important at both local and regional scales. Spatial factors were important at the intermediate scale. Our study supports the notion of scale-dependence of environmental, spatial and temporal processes in the distribution

  8. Siblings of patients with Crohn's disease exhibit a biologically relevant dysbiosis in mucosal microbial metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Hedin, Charlotte; van der Gast, Christopher J; Rogers, Geraint B; Cuthbertson, Leah; McCartney, Sara; Stagg, Andrew J; Lindsay, James O; Whelan, Kevin

    2016-06-01

    To determine the existence of mucosal dysbiosis in siblings of patients with Crohn's disease (CD) using 454 pyrosequencing and to comprehensively characterise and determine the influence of genotypical and phenotypical factors, on that dysbiosis. Siblings of patients with CD have elevated risk of developing CD and display aspects of disease phenotype, including faecal dysbiosis. Whether the mucosal microbiota is disrupted in these at-risk individuals is unknown. Rectal biopsy DNA was extracted from 21 patients with quiescent CD, 17 of their healthy siblings and 19 unrelated healthy controls. Mucosal microbiota was analysed by 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing and were classified into core and rare species. Genotypical risk was determined using Illumina Immuno BeadChip, faecal calprotectin by ELISA and blood T-cell phenotype by flow cytometry. Core microbiota of both patients with CD and healthy siblings was significantly less diverse than controls. Metacommunity profiling (Bray-Curtis (SBC) index) showed the sibling core microbial composition to be more similar to CD (SBC=0.70) than to healthy controls, whereas the sibling rare microbiota was more similar to healthy controls (SBC=0.42). Faecalibacterium prausnitzii contributed most to core metacommunity dissimilarity both between siblings and controls, and between patients and controls. Phenotype/genotype markers of CD risk significantly influenced microbiota variation between and within groups, of which genotype had the largest effect. Individuals with elevated CD-risk display mucosal dysbiosis characterised by reduced diversity of core microbiota and lower abundance of F. prausnitzii. This dysbiosis in healthy people at risk of CD implicates microbiological processes in CD pathogenesis. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  9. Scale-Dependence of Processes Structuring Dung Beetle Metacommunities Using Functional Diversity and Community Deconstruction Approaches

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Pedro Giovâni; Hernández, Malva Isabel Medina

    2015-01-01

    Community structure is driven by mechanisms linked to environmental, spatial and temporal processes, which have been successfully addressed using metacommunity framework. The relative importance of processes shaping community structure can be identified using several different approaches. Two approaches that are increasingly being used are functional diversity and community deconstruction. Functional diversity is measured using various indices that incorporate distinct community attributes. Community deconstruction is a way to disentangle species responses to ecological processes by grouping species with similar traits. We used these two approaches to determine whether they are improvements over traditional measures (e.g., species composition, abundance, biomass) for identification of the main processes driving dung beetle (Scarabaeinae) community structure in a fragmented mainland-island landscape in southern Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We sampled five sites in each of four large forest areas, two on the mainland and two on the island. Sampling was performed in 2012 and 2013. We collected abundance and biomass data from 100 sampling points distributed over 20 sampling sites. We studied environmental, spatial and temporal effects on dung beetle community across three spatial scales, i.e., between sites, between areas and mainland-island. The γ-diversity based on species abundance was mainly attributed to β-diversity as a consequence of the increase in mean α- and β-diversity between areas. Variation partitioning on abundance, biomass and functional diversity showed scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities. We identified two major groups of responses among 17 functional groups. In general, environmental filters were important at both local and regional scales. Spatial factors were important at the intermediate scale. Our study supports the notion of scale-dependence of environmental, spatial and temporal processes in the distribution

  10. Host-seeking efficiency can explain population dynamics of the tsetse fly Glossina morsitans morsitans in response to host density decline

    PubMed Central

    Mthombothi, Zinhle; Lagat, Vitalis K.; Atuhaire, Fatumah; Hargrove, John W.

    2017-01-01

    Females of all blood-feeding arthropod vectors must find and feed on a host in order to produce offspring. For tsetse—vectors of the trypanosomes that cause human and animal African trypanosomiasis—the problem is more extreme, since both sexes feed solely on blood. Host location is thus essential both for survival and reproduction. Host population density should therefore be an important driver of population dynamics for haematophagous insects, and particularly for tsetse, but the role of host density is poorly understood. We investigate the issue using data on changes in numbers of tsetse (Glossina morsitans morsitans Westwood) caught during a host elimination experiment in Zimbabwe in the 1960s. During the experiment, numbers of flies caught declined by 95%. We aimed to assess whether models including starvation-dependent mortality could explain observed changes in tsetse numbers as host density declined. An ordinary differential equation model, including starvation-dependent mortality, captured the initial dynamics of the observed tsetse population. However, whereas small numbers of tsetse were caught throughout the host elimination exercise, the modelled population went extinct. Results of a spatially explicit agent-based model suggest that this discrepancy could be explained by immigration of tsetse into the experimental plot. Variation in host density, as a result of natural and anthropogenic factors, may influence tsetse population dynamics in space and time. This has implications for Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense transmission. Increased tsetse mortality as a consequence of low host density may decrease trypanosome transmission, but hungrier flies may be more inclined to bite humans, thereby increasing the risk of transmission to humans. Our model provides a way of exploring the role of host density on tsetse population dynamics and could be incorporated into models of trypanosome transmission dynamics to better understand how spatio-temporal variation

  11. Host-seeking efficiency can explain population dynamics of the tsetse fly Glossina morsitans morsitans in response to host density decline.

    PubMed

    Lord, Jennifer S; Mthombothi, Zinhle; Lagat, Vitalis K; Atuhaire, Fatumah; Hargrove, John W

    2017-07-01

    Females of all blood-feeding arthropod vectors must find and feed on a host in order to produce offspring. For tsetse-vectors of the trypanosomes that cause human and animal African trypanosomiasis-the problem is more extreme, since both sexes feed solely on blood. Host location is thus essential both for survival and reproduction. Host population density should therefore be an important driver of population dynamics for haematophagous insects, and particularly for tsetse, but the role of host density is poorly understood. We investigate the issue using data on changes in numbers of tsetse (Glossina morsitans morsitans Westwood) caught during a host elimination experiment in Zimbabwe in the 1960s. During the experiment, numbers of flies caught declined by 95%. We aimed to assess whether models including starvation-dependent mortality could explain observed changes in tsetse numbers as host density declined. An ordinary differential equation model, including starvation-dependent mortality, captured the initial dynamics of the observed tsetse population. However, whereas small numbers of tsetse were caught throughout the host elimination exercise, the modelled population went extinct. Results of a spatially explicit agent-based model suggest that this discrepancy could be explained by immigration of tsetse into the experimental plot. Variation in host density, as a result of natural and anthropogenic factors, may influence tsetse population dynamics in space and time. This has implications for Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense transmission. Increased tsetse mortality as a consequence of low host density may decrease trypanosome transmission, but hungrier flies may be more inclined to bite humans, thereby increasing the risk of transmission to humans. Our model provides a way of exploring the role of host density on tsetse population dynamics and could be incorporated into models of trypanosome transmission dynamics to better understand how spatio-temporal variation in

  12. The dynamic range of biologic functions and variation of many environmental cues may be declining in the modern age: implications for diseases and therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Yun, Anthony J; Bazar, Kimberly A; Gerber, Anthony; Lee, Patrick Y; Daniel, Stephanie M

    2005-01-01

    We hypothesize that declining dynamic range and variation of environmental cues may contribute to health dysfunctions, and that judicious expansion of biologic dynamic ranges may be beneficial. Three disparate examples involving the endocrine, autonomic, and musculoskeletal systems are discussed. Daytime sheltering, optical shading, and nighttime use of artificial light may reduce circadian luminal variation. The resulting melatonin alterations may contribute to systemic dysfunctions. Loss of temporal variation of other hormones may contribute to biologic dysfunctions, especially those involving the hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Reduced variation of physical exertion, environmental stressors, and thermal gradients that characterize modern lifestyles may reduce the autonomic dynamic range resulting in lowered heart rate variability and a myriad of systemic dysfunctions. The health benefits of activities such as exercise, meditation, acupuncture, coitus, and laughter may operate through increasing autonomic variability. Reduced physical exertion also accounts for declining dynamic range of musculoskeletal function. The resulting muscle atrophy, fat infiltration, and sarcomere shortening may not only have deleterious local effects, but may also be involved in systemic metabolic dysfunctions such as insulin resistance. The extent to which our endogenous systems rely on environmental variation for self-tuning and the impact that under-utilization of compensatory mechanisms has on biologic function are not well understood. Modern therapeutic approaches generally result in reversion to the mean of physiologic functions and may buffer against variation. For example, beta-blockers are given to reduce adrenergic excess, insulin to treat insulin insufficiency, serotonin-reuptake inhibitors for depression, and refractive lenses for myopia. By undermining the demand for native compensatory functions, such therapeutic strategies may actually impair future ability to respond to

  13. Comparative Solar Wind Properties at 9AU between the maximum and late declining phases of the Solar Cycle and possible implications for the magnetospheric dynamics of Saturn

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Went, D. R.; Jackman, C. M.; Forsyth, R. J.; Dougherty, M. K.; Crary, F. J.

    2009-04-01

    We compare and contrast the general plasma and magnetic field properties of the solar wind upstream of Saturn (8.5-9.5 AU) at solar maximum (Pioneer-11 encounter) and the late-declining (Cassini approach) phase of the solar cycle. In both cases we find a highly structured solar wind dominated by co-rotating interaction regions (CIRs), merged interaction regions (MIRs) and Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections (ICMEs) that temporarily disrupt an otherwise clear two sector interplanetary magnetic field structure. Solar rotations generally contain two CIR compressions with embedded crossings of the heliospheric current sheet. There is no conclusive evidence for (persistent) departures from the Parker Spiral IMF model in this region of the heliosphere at either phase of the solar cycle, consistent with previous analyses (Thomas and Smith 1980, Jackman et al. 2008). However it is clear that average plasma properties vary significantly between the maximum and late declining phases of the cycle and there are a number of small but notable deviations. In particular, the average dynamic pressure of the solar wind varies by a factor of roughly two between solar maximum and solar minimum with potentially important consequences for the dynamics of Saturn's magnetosphere. These consequences should become apparent as Cassini enters its extended Equinox Mission which should encompass the rising phase and eventually maximum of Solar Cycle 24. They will be discussed and predictions will be made for future Cassini observations.

  14. Environmental Controls on River Assemblages at the Regional Scale: An Application of the Elements of Metacommunity Structure Framework

    PubMed Central

    Tonkin, Jonathan D.; Sundermann, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Understanding factors that structure regional biodiversity is important for linking ecological and biogeographic processes. Our objective was to explore regional patterns in riverine benthic invertebrate assemblages in relation to their broad positioning along the river network and examine differences in composition, biodiversity (alpha and beta diversity), and environmental drivers. We up-scaled methods used to examine patterns in metacommunity structure (Elements of Metacommunity Structure framework) to examine faunal distribution patterns at the regional extent for 168 low-mountain stream invertebrate assemblages in central Germany. We then identified the most influential environmental factors using boosted regression trees. Faunal composition patterns were compartmentalised (Clementsian or quasi-Clementsian), with little difference from headwaters to large rivers, potentially reflecting the regional scale of the study, by crossing major catchment boundaries and incorporating different species pools. While idealised structures did not vary, environmental drivers of composition varied considerably between river sections and with alpha diversity. Prediction was substantially weaker, and the importance of space was greater, in large rivers compared to other sections suggesting a weakening in species sorting downstream. Further, there was a stronger transition in composition than for alpha diversity downstream. The stronger links with regional faunal composition than with richness further emphasises the importance of considering the alternative ways in which anthropogenic stressors are operating to affect biodiversity patterns. Our approach allowed bridging the gap between local (or metacommunity) and regional scales, providing key insights into drivers of regional biodiversity patterns. PMID:26270550

  15. Seasonal and ontogenetic variation of skin microbial communities and relationships to natural disease dynamics in declining amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Longo, Ana V.; Savage, Anna E.; Hewson, Ian; Zamudio, Kelly R.

    2015-01-01

    Recently, microbiologists have focused on characterizing the probiotic role of skin bacteria for amphibians threatened by the fungal disease chytridiomycosis. However, the specific characteristics of microbial diversity required to maintain health or trigger disease are still not well understood in natural populations. We hypothesized that seasonal and developmental transitions affecting susceptibility to chytridiomycosis could also alter the stability of microbial assemblages. To test our hypothesis, we examined patterns of skin bacterial diversity in two species of declining amphibians (Lithobates yavapaiensis and Eleutherodactylus coqui) affected by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). We focused on two important transitions that affect Bd susceptibility: ontogenetic (from juvenile to adult) shifts in E. coqui and seasonal (from summer to winter) shifts in L. yavapaiensis. We used a combination of community-fingerprinting analyses and 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing to quantify changes in bacterial diversity and assemblage composition between seasons and developmental stages, and to investigate the relationship between bacterial diversity and pathogen load. We found that winter-sampled frogs and juveniles, two states associated with increased Bd susceptibility, exhibited higher diversity compared with summer-sampled frogs and adult individuals. Our findings also revealed that hosts harbouring higher bacterial diversity carried lower Bd infections, providing support for the protective role of bacterial communities. Ongoing work to understand skin microbiome resilience after pathogen disturbance has the potential to identify key taxa involved in disease resistance. PMID:26587253

  16. Temporal and spatial dynamics of trypanosomes infecting the brush-tailed bettong (Bettongia penicillata): a cautionary note of disease-induced population decline

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The brush-tailed bettong or woylie (Bettongia penicillata) is on the brink of extinction. Its numbers have declined by 90% since 1999, with their current distribution occupying less than 1% of their former Australian range. Woylies are known to be infected with three different trypanosomes (Trypanosoma vegrandis, Trypanosoma copemani and Trypanosoma sp. H25) and two different strains of T. copemani that vary in virulence. However, the role that these haemoparasites have played during the recent decline of their host is unclear and is part of ongoing investigation. Methods Woylies were sampled from five locations in southern Western Australia, including two neighbouring indigenous populations, two enclosed (fenced) populations and a captive colony. PCR was used to individually identify the three different trypanosomes from blood and tissues of the host, and to investigate the temporal and spatial dynamics of trypanosome infections. Results The spatial pattern of trypanosome infection varied among the five study sites, with a greater proportion of woylies from the Perup indigenous population being infected with T. copemani than from the neighbouring Kingston indigenous population. For an established infection, T. copemani detection was temporally inconsistent. The more virulent strain of T. copemani appeared to regress at a faster rate than the less virulent strain, with the infection possibly transitioning from the acute to chronic phase. Interspecific competition may also exist between T. copemani and T. vegrandis, where an existing T. vegrandis infection may moderate the sequential establishment of the more virulent T. copemani. Conclusion In this study, we provide a possible temporal connection implicating T. copemani as the disease agent linked with the recent decline of the Kingston indigenous woylie population within the Upper Warren region of Western Australia. The chronic association of trypanosomes with the internal organs of its host may be

  17. Coral reef ecosystem decline: changing dynamics of coral reef carbonate production and implications for reef growth potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perry, Chris

    2016-04-01

    Global-scale deteriorations in coral reef health have caused major shifts in species composition and are likely to be exacerbated by climate change. It has been suggested that one effect of these ecological changes will be to lower reef carbonate production rates, which will impair reef growth potential and, ultimately, may lead to states of net reef erosion. However, quantitative data to support such assertions are limited, and linkages between the ecological state of coral reefs and their past and present geomorphic performance (in other words their growth potential) are poorly resolved. Using recently collected data from sites in the Caribbean and Indian Ocean, and which have undergone very different post-disturbance ecological trajectories over the last ~20-30 years, the differential impacts of disturbance on contemporary carbonate production regimes and on reef growth potential can be explored. In the Caribbean, a region which has been severely impacted ecological over the last 30+ years, our datasets show that average carbonate production rates on reefs are now less than 50% of pre-disturbance rates, and that calculated accretion rates (mm yr-1) are an about order of magnitude lower within shallow water habitats compared to Holocene averages. Collectively, these data suggest that recent ecological declines are now propagating through the system to impact on the geomorphic performance of Caribbean reefs and will impair their future growth potential. In contrast, the carbonate budgets of most reefs across the Chagos archipelago (central Indian Ocean), which is geographically remote and largely isolated from direct human disturbances, have recovered rapidly from major past disturbances (specifically the 1998 coral bleaching event). The carbonate budgets on these remote reefs now average +3.7 G (G = kg CaCO3 m-2 yr-1). Most significantly the production rates on Acropora-dominated reefs, which were most severely impacted by the 1998 bleaching event, average +8.4 G

  18. Nested patterns in hyporheic meta-communities: the role of body morphology and penetrability of sediment.

    PubMed

    Omesová, Marie; Horsák, Michal; Helesic, Jan

    2008-10-01

    Nestedness has been regarded as a common pattern of species distribution especially in terrestrial systems and vertebrate faunas. However, a significantly lower degree of nestedness has been reported for aquatic invertebrates. We analyzed the vertical distribution patterns of taxa in the upper 70 cm of the hyporheic zone. This biotope is abundantly inhabited by epigean fauna, which is morphologically pre-adapted to life within the limited space of sediment interstices. We tested the hypotheses that in the vertical profile of the hyporheic zone sediment acts as a physical barrier (filter), allowing only the morphologically pre-adapted and adapted (i.e., smaller, narrower, more flexible) taxa to penetrate to deeper layers. We demonstrated that this mechanism can promote a strongly nested and colonization-driven pattern at higher taxa levels. The sediment filter (1) constricted the body width: 0.50 mm appeared to be the upper limit for successful sediment colonization at the study site, and (2) favored elongated taxa against small sized taxa. We tested also the assumption that distribution of fine sediment affects the accessibility of hyporheic zone for fauna ("filter density") and thereby influences nestedness. However, we found that nestedness could be sufficiently explained by the depth itself. Our study offers a possible explanation of depth patterns in hyporeic meta-communities as a result of morphological characteristics promoting nestedness at higher taxa level.

  19. Predators modify biogeographic constraints on species distributions in an insect metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Grainger, Tess Nahanni; Germain, Rachel M; Jones, Natalie T; Gilbert, Benjamin

    2017-03-01

    Theory describing the positive effects of patch size and connectivity on diversity in fragmented systems has stimulated a large body of empirical work, yet predicting when and how local species interactions mediate these responses remains challenging. We used insects that specialize on milkweed plants as a model metacommunity to investigate how local predation alters the effects of biogeographic constraints on species distributions. Species-specific dispersal ability and susceptibility to predation were used to predict when patch size and connectivity should shape species distributions, and when these should be modified by local predator densities. We surveyed specialist herbivores and their predators in milkweed patches in two matrix types, a forest and an old field. Predator-resistant species showed the predicted direct positive effects of patch size and connectivity on occupancy rates. For predator-susceptible species, predators consistently altered the impact of biogeographic constraints, rather than acting independently. Finally, differences between matrix types in species' responses and overall occupancy rates indicate a potential role of the inter-patch environment in mediating the joint effects of predators and spatial drivers. Together, these results highlight the importance of local top-down pressure in mediating classic biogeographic relationships, and demonstrate how species-specific responses to local and regional constraints can be used to predict these effects. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  20. Thermal genetic adaptation in the water flea Daphnia and its impact: an evolving metacommunity approach.

    PubMed

    De Meester, Luc; Van Doorslaer, Wendy; Geerts, Aurora; Orsini, Luisa; Stoks, Robby

    2011-11-01

    Genetic adaptation to temperature change can impact responses of populations and communities to global warming. Here we integrate previously published results on experimental evolution trials with follow-up experiments involving the water flea Daphnia as a model system. Our research shows (1) the capacity of natural populations of this species to genetically adapt to changes in temperature in a time span of months to years, (2) the context-dependence of these genetic changes, emphasizing the role of ecology and community composition on evolutionary responses to climatic change, and (3) the impact of micro-evolutionary changes on immigration success of preadapted genotypes. Our study involves (1) experimental evolution trials in the absence and presence of the community of competitors, predators, and parasites, (2) life-table and competition experiments to assess the fitness consequences of micro-evolution, and (3) competition experiments with putative immigrant genotypes. We use these observations as building blocks of an evolving metacommunity to understand biological responses to climatic change. This approach integrates both local and regional responses at both the population and community levels. Finally, we provide an outline of current gaps in knowledge and suggest fruitful avenues for future research. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved.

  1. Detecting warning signs of trouble within population fluctuations: using capture-recapture modeling to uncover changes in population dynamics leading to declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spendelow, J.A.; Nichols, J.D.; Kendall, W.L.; Hines, J.E.; Hatfield, J.S.; Nisbet, I.C.T.

    2004-01-01

    An intensive mark-recapture/resighting program has been carried out on the Roseate Terns nesting at Falkner Island, Connecticut, since the late 1980s as part of a regional study of the metapopulation dynamics and ecology of the endangered Northwest Atlantic breeding population of this species. Substantial losses of tern eggs and chicks to predation at this colony site began in 1996 when at least five Black-crowned Night-Herons started nocturnal raids. This depredation has been a major factor in the reduction of productivity from an average of about 1.0 chicks/pair for the 10 years before night-heron predation began to as low as about 0.2 chicks/pair in 2002. Recent capture-recapture modelling analyses have detected other important impacts on the population dynamics of the Roseate Terns at this site including a reduction by about half in the 'development-of-residency' rates of first-time breeders, and a substantial decline in the local 'survival-and-fidelity' rates of experienced breeders believed due mostly to increased immigration rates to other colony sites.

  2. Metacommunity theory as a multispecies, multiscale framework for studying the influence of river network structure on riverine communities and ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, B.L.; Swan, C.M.; Auerbach, D.A.; Campbell, Grant E.H.; Hitt, N.P.; Maloney, K.O.; Patrick, C.

    2011-01-01

    Explaining the mechanisms underlying patterns of species diversity and composition in riverine networks is challenging. Historically, community ecologists have conceived of communities as largely isolated entities and have focused on local environmental factors and interspecific interactions as the major forces determining species composition. However, stream ecologists have long embraced a multiscale approach to studying riverine ecosystems and have studied both local factors and larger-scale regional factors, such as dispersal and disturbance. River networks exhibit a dendritic spatial structure that can constrain aquatic organisms when their dispersal is influenced by or confined to the river network. We contend that the principles of metacommunity theory would help stream ecologists to understand how the complex spatial structure of river networks mediates the relative influences of local and regional control on species composition. From a basic ecological perspective, the concept is attractive because new evidence suggests that the importance of regional processes (dispersal) depends on spatial structure of habitat and on connection to the regional species pool. The role of local factors relative to regional factors will vary with spatial position in a river network. From an applied perspective, the long-standing view in ecology that local community composition is an indicator of habitat quality may not be uniformly applicable across a river network, but the strength of such bioassessment approaches probably will depend on spatial position in the network. The principles of metacommunity theory are broadly applicable across taxa and systems but seem of particular consequence to stream ecology given the unique spatial structure of riverine systems. By explicitly embracing processes at multiple spatial scales, metacommunity theory provides a foundation on which to build a richer understanding of stream communities.

  3. The core microbiome bonds the Alpine bog vegetation to a transkingdom metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Christian; Berg, Gabriele

    2015-09-01

    Bog ecosystems fulfil important functions in Earth's carbon and water turnover. While plant communities and their keystone species Sphagnum have been well studied, less is known about the microbial communities associated with them. To study our hypothesis that bog plants share an essential core of their microbiome despite their different phylogenetic origins, we analysed four plant community plots with 24 bryophytes, vascular plants and lichen species in two Alpine bogs in Austria by 16S rDNA amplicon sequencing followed by bioinformatic analyses. The overall bog microbiome was classified into 32 microbial phyla, while Proteobacteria (30.8%), Verrucomicrobia (20.3%) and Planctomycetes (15.1%) belonged to the most abundant groups. Interestingly, the archaeal phylum Euryarcheota represented 7.2% of total microbial abundance. However, a high portion of micro-organisms remained unassigned at phylum and class level, respectively. The core microbiome of the bog vegetation contained 177 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) (150 526 seq.) and contributed to 49.5% of the total microbial abundance. Only a minor portion of associated core micro-organisms was host specific for examined plant groups (5.9-11.6%). Using our new approach to analyse plant-microbial communities in an integral framework of ecosystem, vegetation and microbiome, we demonstrated that bog vegetation harboured a core microbiome that is shared between plants and lichens over the whole ecosystem and formed a transkingdom metacommunity. All micro- and macro-organisms are connected to keystone Sphagnum mosses via set of microbial species, for example Burkholderia bryophila which was found associated with a wide spectrum of host plants and is known for a beneficial plant-microbe interaction.

  4. Taxonomic and numerical sufficiency in a Lower and Middle Miocene molluscan metacommunity of the Central Paratethys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuschin, Martin; Nawrot, Rafal; Harzhauser, Mathias; Mandic, Oleg

    2015-04-01

    Among the most important questions in quantitative palaeoecology is how taxonomic and numerical resolution affect the analysis of community and metacommunity patterns. A species-abundance data set (10 localities, 213 bulk samples, 478 species, > 49,000 shells) from Burdigalian, Langhian and Serravallian benthic marine molluscan assemblages of the Central Paratethys was studied for this purpose. Assemblages are from two nearshore habitats (estuarine and marine intertidal) and three subtidal habitats (estuarine, fully marine sandy, and fully marine pelitic), which represent four biozones and four 3rd order depositional sequences over more than three million years, and are developed along the same depth-related environmental gradient. Double-standardized data subsampled to 19 samples per habitat, each with a minimum of 50 specimens, were used to calculate R²-values from PERMANOVA as a measure of differences between habitats at three taxonomic levels (species, genera and families) and at five levels of data transformation (raw abundances, percentages, square-root transformed percentages, fourth-root transformed percentages, presence-absence data). Species discriminate better between habitats than genera and families, but the differences between taxonomic levels are much stronger in the subtidal, where genera and families have more species than than in the intertidal. When all habitats are compared percentages and square-root transformed percentages discriminate equally well and perform better than higher levels of data transformation. Among nearshore and among subtidal habitats, however, the ability to discriminate between habitats increases with the level of data transformation (i.e., it is best for fourth-root transformed percentages and presence-absence data). The impact of decreasing taxonomic resolution is of minor importance in nearshore habitats, which are characterized by similar assemblages showing strong dominance of few widely distributed species, and many

  5. Effects of species’ similarity and dominance on the functional and phylogenetic structure of a plant meta-community

    PubMed Central

    Chalmandrier, L.; Münkemüller, T.; Lavergne, S.; Thuiller, W.

    2015-01-01

    Different assembly processes drive the spatial structure of meta-communities (β-diversity). Recently, functional and phylogenetic diversities have been suggested as indicators of these assembly processes. Assuming that diversity is a good proxy for niche overlap, high β-diversity along environmental gradients should be the result of environmental filtering while low β-diversity should stem from competitive interactions. So far studies trying to disentangle the relative importance of these assembly processes provided mixed results. One reason for this may be that these studies often rely on a single measure of diversity and thus implicitly make a choice on how they account for species relative abundances and how species similarities are captured by functional traits or phylogeny. Here, we tested the effect of gradually scaling the importance of dominance (the weight given to dominant vs. rare species) and species similarity (the weight given to small vs. large similarities) on resulting β-diversity patterns of an alpine plant meta-community. To this end, we combined recent extensions of the Hill numbers framework with Pagel’s phylogenetic tree transformation approach. We included functional (based on the Leaf-Height-Seed spectrum) and phylogenetic facets of β-diversity in our analysis and explicitly accounted for effects of environmental and spatial covariates. We found that functional β-diversity was high when the same weight was given to dominant vs. rare species and to large vs. small species’ similarities. In contrast, phylogenetic β-diversity was low when greater weight was given to dominant species and small species’ similarities. Those results suggested that different environments along the gradients filtered different species according to their functional traits, while, the same competitive lineages dominated communities across the gradients. Our results highlight that functional vs. phylogenetic facets, presence-absence vs. abundance structure

  6. Growth declines in red spruce

    SciTech Connect

    Zedaker, S.M.; Hyink, D.M.; Smith, D.W.

    1987-01-01

    Over the past two decades second-growth red spruce stands in the Northeast have demonstrated declines in radial increment. Some observers are implicating air pollution as a primary cause of the declines, based on recently acquired increment cores from dominant trees. Various forms of air pollution (O/sub 3/, NO/sub x/, SO/sub 2/, and trace metals) are known to reduce growth and development of tree species, but few studies have provided concrete evidence of regional pollution-caused declines in forest ecosystems. Recently published evidence of a synchronous, consistent, and unprecedented regional decline in red spruce should be weighed against the realization that radial increment in red spruce declines naturally as stands age. Separating anthropogenic stress-caused growth patterns from natural stand dynamics requires an in-depth knowledge of forest growth and yield, tree silvics, and forest ecosystem processes. Detailed analyses of growth by stand characteristics - site index, density, elevation, stand history - will be necessary to implicate air pollution as a primary cause of red spruce decline.

  7. Metacommunity composition of web-spiders in a fragmented neotropical forest: relative importance of environmental and spatial effects.

    PubMed

    Baldissera, Ronei; Rodrigues, Everton N L; Hartz, Sandra M

    2012-01-01

    The distribution of beta diversity is shaped by factors linked to environmental and spatial control. The relative importance of both processes in structuring spider metacommunities has not yet been investigated in the Atlantic Forest. The variance explained by purely environmental, spatially structured environmental, and purely spatial components was compared for a metacommunity of web spiders. The study was carried out in 16 patches of Atlantic Forest in southern Brazil. Field work was done in one landscape mosaic representing a slight gradient of urbanization. Environmental variables encompassed plot- and patch-level measurements and a climatic matrix, while principal coordinates of neighbor matrices (PCNMs) acted as spatial variables. A forward selection procedure was carried out to select environmental and spatial variables influencing web-spider beta diversity. Variation partitioning was used to estimate the contribution of pure environmental and pure spatial effects and their shared influence on beta-diversity patterns, and to estimate the relative importance of selected environmental variables. Three environmental variables (bush density, land use in the surroundings of patches, and shape of patches) and two spatial variables were selected by forward selection procedures. Variation partitioning revealed that 15% of the variation of beta diversity was explained by a combination of environmental and PCNM variables. Most of this variation (12%) corresponded to pure environmental and spatially environmental structure. The data indicated that (1) spatial legacy was not important in explaining the web-spider beta diversity; (2) environmental predictors explained a significant portion of the variation in web-spider composition; (3) one-third of environmental variation was due to a spatial structure that jointly explains variation in species distributions. We were able to detect important factors related to matrix management influencing the web-spider beta

  8. Metacommunity Composition of Web-Spiders in a Fragmented Neotropical Forest: Relative Importance of Environmental and Spatial Effects

    PubMed Central

    Baldissera, Ronei; Rodrigues, Everton N. L.; Hartz, Sandra M.

    2012-01-01

    The distribution of beta diversity is shaped by factors linked to environmental and spatial control. The relative importance of both processes in structuring spider metacommunities has not yet been investigated in the Atlantic Forest. The variance explained by purely environmental, spatially structured environmental, and purely spatial components was compared for a metacommunity of web spiders. The study was carried out in 16 patches of Atlantic Forest in southern Brazil. Field work was done in one landscape mosaic representing a slight gradient of urbanization. Environmental variables encompassed plot- and patch-level measurements and a climatic matrix, while principal coordinates of neighbor matrices (PCNMs) acted as spatial variables. A forward selection procedure was carried out to select environmental and spatial variables influencing web-spider beta diversity. Variation partitioning was used to estimate the contribution of pure environmental and pure spatial effects and their shared influence on beta-diversity patterns, and to estimate the relative importance of selected environmental variables. Three environmental variables (bush density, land use in the surroundings of patches, and shape of patches) and two spatial variables were selected by forward selection procedures. Variation partitioning revealed that 15% of the variation of beta diversity was explained by a combination of environmental and PCNM variables. Most of this variation (12%) corresponded to pure environmental and spatially environmental structure. The data indicated that (1) spatial legacy was not important in explaining the web-spider beta diversity; (2) environmental predictors explained a significant portion of the variation in web-spider composition; (3) one-third of environmental variation was due to a spatial structure that jointly explains variation in species distributions. We were able to detect important factors related to matrix management influencing the web-spider beta

  9. The Management of Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boulding, Kenneth E.

    1975-01-01

    With the probability of declining enrollments education needs, according to the author, to develop administrators skilled in adjusting to decline. He notes what educators can learn from the decline of agriculture and railroads and points up the need to get out from under the grants economy. (JT)

  10. The Dilemma of Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abramowitz, Susan

    This paper, one of two related documents, examines the impact of declining enrollments on educational expenditures. It highlights population and social changes that have contributed to the decline and discusses the general financing of schools. Finally, the paper discusses strategies state policymakers can use to manage decline, including…

  11. Adolescence Intellectual Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Patricia B.

    The purposes of this study were to investigate adolescent intellectual decline, and to attempt to determine some of the sexual differences possibly inherent in the phenomenon. It was hypothesized that (1) girls would decline in greater numbers and to a greater degree than boys; and (2) areas and amounts of sex differences of the decliners would…

  12. Butternut Decline (Pest Alert)

    Treesearch

    USDA Forest Service; Northeastern Area, State and Private Forestry

    A decline of butternut has been noted in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and Illinois for the past several years. The causes are being investigated and we need additional information on the occurrence of the problem. We also need to know if the problem is found on walnut. Symptoms of decline include trunk and branch cankers with subsequent dieback of the crown. Decline...

  13. Growth declines in red spruce

    SciTech Connect

    McLaughlin, S.B. ); Adams, H.S. )

    1987-10-01

    In this letter, the authors take issue with Zedaker, Hyink, and Smith who have indicated that observed red spruce growth declines can be expected based on growth trends for even-aged stands of red spruce as documented in Meyer (1929). Recently, an examination was made of stand stocking levels at 750 sites where red spruce were cored and neither the rate of growth decline nor the extent of mortality were found to be related to stand stocking levels or previous disturbance history. The authors conclude that the Meyer data do not represent an appropriate model for stand dynamics of old-growth, high-elevation stands and no not adequately explain the growth declines observed at many of those sites.

  14. Final Report for Dynamic Models for Causal Analysis of Panel Data. Internal Politics of Growth and Decline. Part II, Chapter 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hannan, Michael T.; Freeman, John

    The document, part of a series of chapters described in SO 011 759, describes a model that incorporates organizational politics and environmental dependence into a study of the effects of growth and decline on the number of school personnel. The first section describes the original model which assumes that as the number of students in a district…

  15. Final Report for Dynamic Models for Causal Analysis of Panel Data. Internal Politics of Growth and Decline. Part II, Chapter 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hannan, Michael T.; Freeman, John

    The document, part of a series of chapters described in SO 011 759, describes a model that incorporates organizational politics and environmental dependence into a study of the effects of growth and decline on the number of school personnel. The first section describes the original model which assumes that as the number of students in a district…

  16. Declining Enrollment. Research Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National School Boards Association, Washington, DC.

    Population growth in the United States has declined since the early 1970s. As a result of the lower birth rate and changing migration patterns, approximately one-third of the school districts in the country have experienced some drop in enrollment. Smaller districts are the hardest hit by enrollment decline, since they are less able to absorb the…

  17. Diagnosing School Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duke, Daniel L.

    2008-01-01

    One of the most important strategies for stopping school decline is recognizing its signs early on and promptly applying appropriate interventions. In this article, the author identifies 11 indicators of school decline that are associated with inadequate and inappropriate responses to the challenges of budget cuts, state and federal mandates, loss…

  18. Diagnosing School Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duke, Daniel L.

    2008-01-01

    One of the most important strategies for stopping school decline is recognizing its signs early on and promptly applying appropriate interventions. In this article, the author identifies 11 indicators of school decline that are associated with inadequate and inappropriate responses to the challenges of budget cuts, state and federal mandates, loss…

  19. A spatial analysis of population dynamics and climate change in Africa: potential vulnerability hot spots emerge where precipitation declines and demographic pressures coincide

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    López-Carr, David; Pricope, Narcisa G.; Aukema, Juliann E.; Jankowska, Marta M.; Funk, Christopher C.; Husak, Gregory J.; Michaelsen, Joel C.

    2014-01-01

    We present an integrative measure of exposure and sensitivity components of vulnerability to climatic and demographic change for the African continent in order to identify “hot spots” of high potential population vulnerability. Getis-Ord Gi* spatial clustering analyses reveal statistically significant locations of spatio-temporal precipitation decline coinciding with high population density and increase. Statistically significant areas are evident, particularly across central, southern, and eastern Africa. The highly populated Lake Victoria basin emerges as a particularly salient hot spot. People located in the regions highlighted in this analysis suffer exceptionally high exposure to negative climate change impacts (as populations increase on lands with decreasing rainfall). Results may help inform further hot spot mapping and related research on demographic vulnerabilities to climate change. Results may also inform more suitable geographical targeting of policy interventions across the continent.

  20. Declining fertility in Nepal.

    PubMed

    Das Dangol, B; Retherford, R D; Thapa, S

    1997-03-01

    This article relies on data from the 1991 Nepal Fertility, Family Planning, and Health Survey (NFFPHS) and the 1996 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) to assess trends in fertility in Nepal. The NFFPHS shows heaping at ages 5, 8, 10, and 12 years and a larger proportion of infants. The NLSS shows a different pattern of misreporting of youth and a stronger but similar pattern of age heaping as the NFFPHS for adults. Children ever born by maternal age indicates a degree of completeness and the deletion by older women of deceased children and married children living outside the household. Findings suggest less complete reporting in the NLSS. Age-specific fertility rates are calculated based on birth histories (BH) and the own-children (OC) method based on life tables. Findings indicate that BH and OC estimates of the cumulative fertility rate (CFR) derived from the NLSS and the NFFPHS were comparable for estimating trends in the total fertility rate (TFR). The trends from the two data sets overlapped fairly well during 1983-89. Fertility trends by single years of age showed considerably annual fluctuations due to age misreporting. The CFR and TFR for aggregated time periods showed little or no decline for the earlier 5-year period, a steeper decline in the second period, and variations in trends by data set for the third period from 1983 to 1989. One curve showed no decline and the other showed fertility decline. Fitting a straight line to the trend for 1977-91 shows that CFR declined by 1.61 children from 5.29 children in 1977 to 3.68 children in 1991. TFR declined by 1.90 children from 6.68 children in 1977 to 4.78 children in 1991. The author cautions that the point of fertility decline was not determined exactly, but data suggest that decline occurred around 1980, and the rate was fast thereafter. TFR declined by 2.70 children in urban areas and 1.83 children in rural areas.

  1. Urban Decline and Durable Housing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glaeser, Edward L.; Gyourko, Joseph

    2005-01-01

    Urban decline is not the mirror image of growth, and durable housing is the primary reason the nature of decline is so different. This paper presents a model of urban decline with durable housing and verifies these implications of the model: (1) city growth rates are skewed so that cities grow more quickly than they decline; (2) urban decline is…

  2. 85 million years of pelagic ecosystem evolution: Pacific Ocean deep-sea ichthyolith records reveal fish community dynamics and a long-term decline in sharks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sibert, E. C.; Norris, R. D.; Cuevas, J. M.; Graves, L. G.

    2015-12-01

    The structure and productivity of open ocean consumers has undergone major changes over the past 85 million years. Here, we present the first long-term detailed records of pelagic fish and sharks utilizing the record of ichthyoliths (teeth and dermal scales) from the deep Pacific Ocean. While the North and South Pacific Oceans show similar patterns throughout the 85 million year history, the North Pacific ichthyolith accumulation is significantly higher than the South Pacific, suggesting that the basin has been a more productive region for tens of millions of years. Fish and sharks were not abundant in the Pacific gyres until ~75 million years ago (Ma) suggesting that neither group was quantitatively important in oligotrophic pelagic food webs prior to the latest Cretaceous. Relative to ray-finned fish, sharks were common in the ancient ocean. Most ichthyolith assemblages have >50% shark dermal scales (denticles), but denticle abundance has been declining in both absolute and relative abundance since the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K/Pg) mass extinction. The accumulation rate of ichthyoliths of both sharks and ray-finned fish was highest in the Early Eocene, during the peak of the Cenozoic 'greenhouse' climate where production of shark dermal denticles and fish teeth increased almost five times over Paleocene production rates. Ichthyolith fluxes fell with cooler climates in the later Eocene and Oligocene, but fish production is almost always higher than in the Cretaceous and Paleocene reflecting the expanded ecological roles and importance of pelagic fish in marine ecosystems. Shark denticle production fell to less than half that of the Cretaceous by 20 Ma when it dropped abruptly to near-zero levels. Currently denticles make up <2% of the ichthyolith assemblages when present at all. Ecologically, pelagic sharks appear to be falling as major pelagic consumers over the Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic, and particularly over the past 20 Ma, perhaps reflecting demographic

  3. Declining School Enrollments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Delbert H.

    Declining enrollment means that school districts must engage in thoughtful, thorough planning to cope with this trend, according to the author. His paper outlines a process for school closing, including ways to involve the community in the decision-making process, thereby reducing the likelihood of community conflict and preserving the school…

  4. Declining Black Employment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vedder, Richard; Gallaway, Lowell

    1993-01-01

    Explores income inequality during declining African-American employment, examines current welfare systems, and suggests ways to improve the economic disadvantages of minority groups. Letting markets work can improve the economic status of African Americans. The present dual African-American economy, a market economy and an entitlement economy, is…

  5. Fraternities in Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reisberg, Leo

    2000-01-01

    Reports on a decline in fraternity membership, which is ascribed to changing demographics, bad publicity about alcohol abuse and hazing incidents, and changing student values. Graphs illustrate fraternity membership trends at six universities, including 10-year comparisons in membership, academic performance, and pledges; and average number of men…

  6. Declining Resources, Targeted Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levenson, Nathan

    2011-01-01

    As resources shrink, the need to do more with less becomes critical. As a business CEO turned superintendent, this author has seen firsthand that many options exist, but none are fun, easy, or politically rewarding. He contends that the challenge of managing declining resources is not the choice between doing less for children or discovering new…

  7. Fraternities in Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reisberg, Leo

    2000-01-01

    Reports on a decline in fraternity membership, which is ascribed to changing demographics, bad publicity about alcohol abuse and hazing incidents, and changing student values. Graphs illustrate fraternity membership trends at six universities, including 10-year comparisons in membership, academic performance, and pledges; and average number of men…

  8. [Fertility decline in Spain].

    PubMed

    Arango, J

    1987-01-01

    The historical processes of secular fertility decline in Spain and Portugal are not well understood. Very few microdemographic studies of small geographic regions or particular social strata have been done. A contribution by David Reher to the First Spanish-Portuguese-Italian Historical Demography Conference on the fertility decline in the interior province of Cuenca, Spain, uses the own-children method to analyze changes in marital fertility in the 19th and 20th centuries. Reher discovered a slight fertility decline of perhaps 15% which occurred between the end of the 18th century and 1860-75. The fertility decline did not resume until after the Spanish Civil War, and then it was a very gradual and continuous process. When instead of the total female population, women aged 35-39 were studied, unequivocal signs of fertility control appeared. Conscious fertility control thus appears to have begun among older women limiting rather than spacing births. Reher's analysis by social groups demonstrates that fertility declined first and more rapidly in the nonagricultural and urban populations and among the higher income groups. The fertility decline in Cuenca was certainly not identical to that in most of Spain, but may have been fairly typical of a large part of the interior. Another contribution to the Historical Demography Conference, by Anna Cabre and Isabel Pujadas, analyzes fertility trends and cyclical fluctuations in 20th century Cataluna, arguing that they must be placed in historical perspective if recent changes are to be understood and plausible projections made. Their work demonstrates the value of selecting a relatively homogeneous geographic unit for analysis. The contribution of Margarita Delgado to the conference analyzed interregional fertility differences in contemporary Spain. The high legitimate fertility of the south of Spain is accentuated by high nuptiality rates. In central Spain, the combination of high legitimate fertility rates and low

  9. Robustness of metacommunities with omnivory to habitat destruction: disentangling patch fragmentation from patch loss.

    PubMed

    Liao, Jinbao; Bearup, Daniel; Wang, Yeqiao; Nijs, Ivan; Bonte, Dries; Li, Yuanheng; Brose, Ulrich; Wang, Shaopeng; Blasius, Bernd

    2017-06-01

    Habitat destruction, characterized by patch loss and fragmentation, is a major driving force of species extinction, and understanding its mechanisms has become a central issue in biodiversity conservation. Numerous studies have explored the effect of patch loss on food web dynamics, but ignored the critical role of patch fragmentation. Here we develop an extended patch-dynamic model for a tri-trophic omnivory system with trophic-dependent dispersal in fragmented landscapes. We found that species display different vulnerabilities to both patch loss and fragmentation, depending on their dispersal range and trophic position. The resulting trophic structure varies depending on the degree of habitat loss and fragmentation, due to a tradeoff between bottom-up control on omnivores (dominated by patch loss) and dispersal limitation on intermediate consumers (dominated by patch fragmentation). Overall, we find that omnivory increases system robustness to habitat destruction relative to a simple food chain. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  10. Direct HIV cytopathicity cannot account for CD4 decline in AIDS in the presence of homeostasis: a worst-case dynamic analysis.

    PubMed

    Anderson, R W; Ascher, M S; Sheppard, H W

    1998-03-01

    The central paradox of HIV pathogenesis is that the viral burden, either free or cellular, seems too low to deplete the CD4 population by direct killing. Until recently, little data could be used to compare direct and indirect pathogenic theories critically. Clinical trials with potent new antiviral agents have measured important kinetic parameters of HIV infection, including viral and infected cell half-lives. This has led to the construction of explicit models of direct killing. Using a worst-case dynamic analysis, we show that such cytopathic models are untenable. Rates of infected cell removal are orders of magnitude too low to suppress steady state CD4 counts significantly in the face of lymphocyte replenishment, especially in early infection. Furthermore, the direct cytopathic models, as proposed, predict an extremely variable disease course across the broad range of observed viral burdens (five orders of magnitude), which is inconsistent with the relatively small differences in disease progression observed between patients. In contrast, immunologic theories of pathogenesis, such as homeostatic dysregulation based on immune activation, do not suffer from these difficulties and are more consistent with the natural history of HIV infection.

  11. Cardiac Mitochondrial Proteome Dynamics with Heavy Water Reveals Stable Rate of Mitochondrial Protein Synthesis in Heart Failure Despite Decline in Mitochondrial Oxidative Capacity

    PubMed Central

    Shekar, Kadambari Chandra; Li, Ling; Dabkowski, Erinne R.; Xu, Wenhong; Ribeiro, Rogerio Faustino; Hecker, Peter A.; Recchia, Fabio A.; Sadygov, Rovshan G.; Willard, Belinda; Kasumov, Takhar; Stanley, William C.

    2017-01-01

    We recently developed a method to measure mitochondrial proteome dynamics with heavy water (2H2O)-based metabolic labeling and high resolution mass spectrometry. We reported the half-lives and synthesis rates of several proteins in the two cardiac mitochondrial subpopulations, subsarcolemmal and interfibrillar (SSM and IFM), in Sprague Dawley rats. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that the mitochondrial protein synthesis rate is reduced in heart failure, with possible differential changes in SSM versus IFM. Six to seven week old male Sprague Dawley rats underwent transverse aortic constriction (TAC) and developed moderate heart failure after 22 weeks. Heart failure and sham rats of the same age received heavy water (5% in drinking water) for up to 80 days. Cardiac SSM and IFM were isolated from both groups and the proteins were separated by 1D gel electrophoresis. Heart failure reduced protein content and increased the turnover rate of several proteins involved in fatty acid oxidation, electron transport chain and ATP synthesis, while it decreased the turnover of other proteins, including pyruvate dehydrogenase subunit in IFM, but not in SSM. Because of these bidirectional changes, the average overall half-life of proteins was not altered by heart failure in both SSM and IFM. The kinetic measurements of individual mitochondrial proteins presented in this study may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms responsible for mitochondrial alterations in the failing heart. PMID:24995939

  12. A Novel, Unbiased Analysis Approach for Investigating Population Dynamics: A Case Study on Calanus finmarchicus and Its Decline in the North Sea

    PubMed Central

    Papworth, Danny J.; Marini, Simone; Conversi, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Marine populations are controlled by a series of drivers, pertaining to both the physical environment and the biological environment (trophic predator-prey interactions). There is heated debate over drivers, especially when trying to understand the causes of major ecosystem events termed regime shifts. In this work, we have researched and developed a novel methodology based on Genetic Programming (GP) for distinguishing which drivers can influence species abundance. This methodology benefits of having no a priori assumptions either on the ecological parameters used or on the underlying mathematical relationships among them. We have validated this methodology applying it to the North Sea pelagic ecosystem. We use the target species Calanus finmarchicus, a key copepod in temperate and subarctic ecosystems, along with 86 biological, hydrographical and climatic time series, ranging from local water nutrients and fish predation, to large scale climate pressure patterns. The chosen study area is the central North Sea, from 1972 to 2011, during which period there was an ecological regime shift. The GP based analysis identified 3 likely drivers of C. finmarchicus abundance, which highlights the importance of considering both physical and trophic drivers: temperature, North Sea circulation (net flow into the North Atlantic), and predation (herring). No large scale climate patterns were selected, suggesting that when there is availability of both data types, local drivers are more important. The results produced by the GP based procedure are consistent with the literature published to date, and validate the use of GP for interpreting species dynamics. We propose that this methodology holds promises for the highly non-linear field of ecology. PMID:27366910

  13. A Novel, Unbiased Analysis Approach for Investigating Population Dynamics: A Case Study on Calanus finmarchicus and Its Decline in the North Sea.

    PubMed

    Papworth, Danny J; Marini, Simone; Conversi, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Marine populations are controlled by a series of drivers, pertaining to both the physical environment and the biological environment (trophic predator-prey interactions). There is heated debate over drivers, especially when trying to understand the causes of major ecosystem events termed regime shifts. In this work, we have researched and developed a novel methodology based on Genetic Programming (GP) for distinguishing which drivers can influence species abundance. This methodology benefits of having no a priori assumptions either on the ecological parameters used or on the underlying mathematical relationships among them. We have validated this methodology applying it to the North Sea pelagic ecosystem. We use the target species Calanus finmarchicus, a key copepod in temperate and subarctic ecosystems, along with 86 biological, hydrographical and climatic time series, ranging from local water nutrients and fish predation, to large scale climate pressure patterns. The chosen study area is the central North Sea, from 1972 to 2011, during which period there was an ecological regime shift. The GP based analysis identified 3 likely drivers of C. finmarchicus abundance, which highlights the importance of considering both physical and trophic drivers: temperature, North Sea circulation (net flow into the North Atlantic), and predation (herring). No large scale climate patterns were selected, suggesting that when there is availability of both data types, local drivers are more important. The results produced by the GP based procedure are consistent with the literature published to date, and validate the use of GP for interpreting species dynamics. We propose that this methodology holds promises for the highly non-linear field of ecology.

  14. Ecological correlates of population genetic structure: a comparative approach using a vertebrate metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Manier, Mollie K; Arnold, Stevan J

    2006-01-01

    Identifying ecological factors associated with population genetic differentiation is important for understanding microevolutionary processes and guiding the management of threatened populations. We identified ecological correlates of several population genetic parameters for three interacting species (two garter snakes and an anuran) that occupy a common landscape. Using multiple regression analysis, we found that species interactions were more important in explaining variation in population genetic parameters than habitat and nearest-neighbour characteristics. Effective population size was best explained by census size, while migration was associated with differences in species abundance. In contrast, genetic distance was poorly explained by the ecological correlates that we tested, but geographical distance was prominent in models for all species. We found substantially different population dynamics for the prey species relative to the two predators, characterized by larger effective sizes, lower gene flow and a state of migration-drift equilibrium. We also identified an escarpment formed by a series of block faults that serves as a barrier to dispersal for the predators. Our results suggest that successful landscape-level management should incorporate genetic and ecological data for all relevant species, because even closely associated species can exhibit very different population genetic dynamics on the same landscape. PMID:17015357

  15. Species interactions and the effects of climate variability on a wetland amphibian metacommunity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Davis, Courtney L.; Miller, David A.W.; Walls, Susan C.; Barichivich, William J.; Riley, Jeffrey W.; Brown, Mary E.

    2017-01-01

    Disentangling the role that multiple interacting factors have on species responses to shifting climate poses a significant challenge. However, our ability to do so is of utmost importance to predict the effects of climate change on species distributions. We examined how populations of three species of wetland-breeding amphibians, which varied in life history requirements, responded to a six-year period of extremely variable precipitation. This interval was punctuated by both extensive drought and heavy precipitation and flooding, providing a natural experiment to measure community responses to environmental perturbations. We estimated occurrence dynamics using a discrete hidden Markov modeling approach that incorporated information regarding habitat state and predator–prey interactions. This approach allowed us to measure how metapopulation dynamics of each amphibian species was affected by interactions among weather, wetland hydroperiod, and co-occurrence with fish predators. The pig frog, a generalist, proved most resistant to perturbations, with both colonization and persistence being unaffected by seasonal variation in precipitation or co-occurrence with fishes. The ornate chorus frog, an ephemeral wetland specialist, responded positively to periods of drought owing to increased persistence and colonization rates during periods of low-rainfall. Low probabilities of occurrence of the ornate chorus frog in long-duration wetlands were driven by interactions with predators due to low colonization rates when fishes were present. The mole salamander was most sensitive to shifts in water availability. In our study area, this species never occurred in short-duration wetlands and persistence probabilities decreased during periods of drought. At the same time, negative effects occurred with extreme precipitation because flooding facilitated colonization of fishes to isolated wetlands and mole salamanders did not colonize wetlands once fishes were present. We

  16. Species interactions and the effects of climate variability on a wetland amphibian metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Davis, Courtney L; Miller, David A W; Walls, Susan C; Barichivich, William J; Riley, Jeffrey W; Brown, Mary E

    2017-01-01

    Disentangling the role that multiple interacting factors have on species responses to shifting climate poses a significant challenge. However, our ability to do so is of utmost importance to predict the effects of climate change on species distributions. We examined how populations of three species of wetland-breeding amphibians, which varied in life history requirements, responded to a six-year period of extremely variable precipitation. This interval was punctuated by both extensive drought and heavy precipitation and flooding, providing a natural experiment to measure community responses to environmental perturbations. We estimated occurrence dynamics using a discrete hidden Markov modeling approach that incorporated information regarding habitat state and predator-prey interactions. This approach allowed us to measure how metapopulation dynamics of each amphibian species was affected by interactions among weather, wetland hydroperiod, and co-occurrence with fish predators. The pig frog, a generalist, proved most resistant to perturbations, with both colonization and persistence being unaffected by seasonal variation in precipitation or co-occurrence with fishes. The ornate chorus frog, an ephemeral wetland specialist, responded positively to periods of drought owing to increased persistence and colonization rates during periods of low-rainfall. Low probabilities of occurrence of the ornate chorus frog in long-duration wetlands were driven by interactions with predators due to low colonization rates when fishes were present. The mole salamander was most sensitive to shifts in water availability. In our study area, this species never occurred in short-duration wetlands and persistence probabilities decreased during periods of drought. At the same time, negative effects occurred with extreme precipitation because flooding facilitated colonization of fishes to isolated wetlands and mole salamanders did not colonize wetlands once fishes were present. We demonstrate

  17. Spatial Structures of the Environment and of Dispersal Impact Species Distribution in Competitive Metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Dexiecuo; Gravel, Dominique; Chu, Chengjin; Wang, Gang

    2013-01-01

    The correspondence between species distribution and the environment depends on species’ ability to track favorable environmental conditions (via dispersal) and to maintain competitive hierarchy against the constant influx of migrants (mass effect) and demographic stochasticity (ecological drift). Here we report a simulation study of the influence of landscape structure on species distribution. We consider lottery competition for space in a spatially heterogeneous environment, where the landscape is represented as a network of localities connected by dispersal. We quantified the contribution of neutrality and species sorting to their spatial distribution. We found that neutrality increases and the strength of species-sorting decreases with the centrality of a community in the landscape when the average dispersal among communities is low, whereas the opposite was found at elevated dispersal. We also found that the strength of species-sorting increases with environmental heterogeneity. Our results illustrate that spatial structure of the environment and of dispersal must be taken into account for understanding species distribution. We stress the importance of spatial geographic structure on the relative importance of niche vs. neutral processes in controlling community dynamics. PMID:23874815

  18. Local Environmental Conditions Shape Generalist But Not Specialist Components of Microbial Metacommunities in the Baltic Sea

    PubMed Central

    Lindh, Markus V.; Sjöstedt, Johanna; Casini, Michele; Andersson, Agneta; Legrand, Catherine; Pinhassi, Jarone

    2016-01-01

    Marine microbes exhibit biogeographical patterns linked with fluxes of matter and energy. Yet, knowledge of the mechanisms shaping bacterioplankton community assembly across temporal scales remains poor. We examined bacterioplankton 16S rRNA gene fragments obtained from Baltic Sea transects to determine phylogenetic relatedness and assembly processes coupled with niche breadth. Communities were phylogenetically more related over time than expected by chance, albeit with considerable temporal variation. Hence, habitat filtering, i.e., local environmental conditions, rather than competition structured bacterioplankton communities in summer but not in spring or autumn. Species sorting (SS) was the dominant assembly process, but temporal and taxonomical variation in mechanisms was observed. For May communities, Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria exhibited SS while Bacteroidetes and Verrucomicrobia were assembled by SS and mass effect. Concomitantly, Gammaproteobacteria were assembled by the neutral model and patch dynamics. Temporal variation in habitat filtering and dispersal highlights the impact of seasonally driven reorganization of microbial communities. Typically abundant Baltic Sea populations such as the NS3a marine group (Bacteroidetes) and the SAR86 and SAR11 clade had the highest niche breadth. The verrucomicrobial Spartobacteria population also exhibited high niche breadth. Surprisingly, variation in bacterioplankton community composition was regulated by environmental factors for generalist taxa but not specialists. Our results suggest that generalists such as NS3a, SAR86, and SAR11 are reorganized to a greater extent by changes in the environment compared to specialists and contribute more strongly to determining overall biogeographical patterns of marine bacterial communities. PMID:28066392

  19. History of sugar maple decline

    Treesearch

    David R. Houston

    1999-01-01

    Only a few episodes of sugar maple dieback or decline were recorded during the first half of the 20th Century. In contrast, the last 50 years have provided numerous reports of both urban and forest dieback/decline. In the late 1950s, a defoliation-triggered decline, termed maple blight, that occurred in Wisconsin prompted the first comprehensive, multidisciplinary...

  20. Oak decline around the world

    Treesearch

    Kurt W. Gottschalk; Philip M. Wargo

    1997-01-01

    Oak (Quercus spp.) decline is a malady related to the consequences of stress and successful attack of stressed trees by opportunistic (secondary) organisms (Wargo et al. 1983). It is a progressive process where trees decline in health for several years before they die. Houston (1981) developed a model of declines that is presented in Figure 1. So...

  1. Ecological consequences of sea-ice decline.

    PubMed

    Post, Eric; Bhatt, Uma S; Bitz, Cecilia M; Brodie, Jedediah F; Fulton, Tara L; Hebblewhite, Mark; Kerby, Jeffrey; Kutz, Susan J; Stirling, Ian; Walker, Donald A

    2013-08-02

    After a decade with nine of the lowest arctic sea-ice minima on record, including the historically low minimum in 2012, we synthesize recent developments in the study of ecological responses to sea-ice decline. Sea-ice loss emerges as an important driver of marine and terrestrial ecological dynamics, influencing productivity, species interactions, population mixing, gene flow, and pathogen and disease transmission. Major challenges in the near future include assigning clearer attribution to sea ice as a primary driver of such dynamics, especially in terrestrial systems, and addressing pressures arising from human use of arctic coastal and near-shore areas as sea ice diminishes.

  2. Decomposing the seasonal fitness decline.

    PubMed

    Öberg, Meit; Pärt, Tomas; Arlt, Debora; Laugen, Ane T; Low, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Seasonal fitness declines are common, but the relative contribution of different reproductive components to the seasonal change in the production of reproductive young, and the component-specific drivers of this change is generally poorly known. We used long-term data (17 years) on breeding time (i.e. date of first egg laid) in northern wheatears (Oenanthe oenanthe) to investigate seasonal reproductive patterns and estimate the relative contributions of reproductive components to the overall decline in reproduction, while accounting for factors potentially linked to seasonal declines, i.e. individual and habitat quality. All reproductive components-nest success (reflecting nest predation rate), clutch size, fledging success and recruitment success-showed a clear decline with breeding time whereas subsequent adult survival did not. A non-linear increase in nest predation rate caused nest success to decline rapidly early in the season and level off at ~80% success late in the breeding season. The combined seasonal decline in all reproductive components caused the mean production of recruits per nest to drop from around 0.7-0.2; with the relative contribution greatest for recruitment success which accounted for ~50% of the decline. Our data suggest that changing environmental conditions together with effects of nest predation have strong effects on the seasonal decline in fitness. Our demonstration of the combined effects of all reproductive components and their relative contribution shows that omitting data from later stages of breeding (recruitment) can greatly underestimate seasonal fitness declines.

  3. Hickory decline and mortality: Update on hickory decline research

    Treesearch

    Jennifer Juzwik; Ji-Huyn Park; Linda Haugen

    2010-01-01

    Research continued through the 2010 field season on the etiology of hickory decline that is characterized by thinning crowns with small, yellow leaves and hickory bark beetle attack on the upper main stem. This research is part of a larger project initiated in 2006 to assess the distribution and determine the cause(s) of Forest Health Monitoring reported decline and...

  4. Additional pest surveyed: hickory decline

    Treesearch

    Jennifer Juzwik; Ji-Hyun. Park

    2011-01-01

    A five year investigation of the cause of rapid crown decline and mortality of bitternut hickory was concluded in September 2011. Results of a series of related studies found that multiple cankers and xylem (the water conducting tissue) dysfunction caused by Ceratocystis smalleyi are correlated with rapid crown decline typical of a limited vascular...

  5. Mobility decline in old age.

    PubMed

    Rantakokko, Merja; Mänty, Minna; Rantanen, Taina

    2013-01-01

    Mobility is important for community independence. With increasing age, underlying pathologies, genetic vulnerabilities, physiological and sensory impairments, and environmental barriers increase the risk for mobility decline. Understanding how mobility declines is paramount to finding ways to promote mobility in old age.

  6. Recognizing and preventing maple decline

    Treesearch

    James W. Walters

    1992-01-01

    Maple decline (i.e. maple blight, maple dieback) has periodically caused significant losses of sugar maple in northern hardwood forests. The first major outbreak of maple decline was reported in northeastern Wisconsin and upper Michigan in the late 1950's. The disease reappeared in the same general area during the late 1970's and early 1980's.

  7. Feminine Intellectual Decline During Adolescence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Patricia B.

    The purpose of this study was to investigate further the relationship between sex and a decline of intellectual abilities during adolescence and to examine some personality differences between young women who declined in intellectual abilities during adolescence and those who did not. Differences examined were: need to be included, need to be…

  8. Fertility continues to decline in Philippines.

    PubMed

    1999-01-01

    During the National Dissemination Seminar of the 1998 Philippine National Demographic and Health Survey, panelists highlighted the national decline in fertility from 4.1 children/woman in 1990-93 to 3.7 in 1995-98. This decline is accompanied by an increase in contraceptive use, with traditional methods accounting to 40% of all contraception used. Prevalence of contraceptive use is 47%, with female sterilization as the most common method. However, there still exists a 40% contraceptive discontinuation, which was largely attributed to contraceptive failure resulting to unplanned pregnancy. In response, the National Seminar planned the implementation of workshops at the regional level to present survey findings and elicit feedback on the implications and possible solutions to the problems encountered. Furthermore, analyses studies are underway on fertility preferences and the transition of the two child norms, and contraceptive use dynamics.

  9. Minimal models of growth and decline of microbial populations.

    PubMed

    Juška, Alfonsas

    2011-01-21

    Dynamics of growth and decline of microbial populations were analysed and respective models were developed in this investigation. Analysis of the dynamics was based on general considerations concerning the main properties of microorganisms and their interactions with the environment which was supposed to be affected by the activity of the population. Those considerations were expressed mathematically by differential equations or systems of the equations containing minimal sets of parameters characterizing those properties. It has been found that: (1) the factors leading to the decline of the population have to be considered separately, namely, accumulation of metabolites (toxins) in the medium and the exhaustion of resources; the latter have to be separated again into renewable ('building materials') and non-renewable (sources of energy); (2) decline of the population is caused by the exhaustion of sources of energy but no decline is predicted by the model because of the exhaustion of renewable resources; (3) the model determined by the accumulation of metabolites (toxins) in the medium does not suggest the existence of a separate 'stationary phase'; (4) in the model determined by the exhaustion of energy resources the 'stationary' and 'decline' phases are quite discernible; and (5) there is no symmetry in microbial population dynamics, the decline being slower than the rise. Mathematical models are expected to be useful in getting insight into the process of control of the dynamics of microbial populations. The models are in agreement with the experimental data.

  10. [Forest degradation/decline: research and practice].

    PubMed

    Zhu, Jiao-Jun; Li, Feng-Qin

    2007-07-01

    As one of the most critical environmental problems in the 21st century, forest degradation has been facing worldwide. There are many definitions about forest degradation, but its common features are the permanent loss of forests, stand structure destructed, forest quality decreased, and forest functions lowered. Forest decline or tree decline in fact is one of the causes of forest degradation, which includes the general reduction of trees in vigor, low level growth of trees in productivity, death of trees, and even, decline of soil fertility. Many researches indicated that deforestation is the permanent loss of forests in area, which is shifted to other land uses. Deforestation is the product of the interactions between environmental, social, economic, cultural, and political forces at work in any given country/region, and thus, more and more attention is focused on the negative socioeconomic and environmental effects after forest degradation, especially on the reduction of forest area induced by deforestation. The effects of any decisions or policies in national and international levels on forest degradation induced by deforestation have been paid attention as well. How to make efforts and strengthen the worldwide cooperation to combat the forest degradation induced by deforestation must be challenged to find appropriate solutions. There are many researches on forest decline, because of its complexity and uncertainties. The major causes of forest decline include: 1) pollution from both industry and agriculture, 2) stress factors, e.g., desiccation, 3) changes in stand dynamics, 4) decline disease of forest or diseases of complex etiology, 5) degradation of productivity and/or soil fertility in pure plantation forests. Forest degradation in China is similar to that all over the world, but with the characteristics in forest components, i.e., 1) secondary forests are the major forest resources, 2) China has the most plantation forests in the world, some of which have

  11. Recent Honey Bee Colony Declines

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-03-26

    Population Losses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Symptoms of Colony Collapse Disorder...MAAREC), which represents beekeeping associations in New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Past Honey Bee Population Losses... population losses due to bee pests, parasites, pathogens, and disease. Most notable are declines due to two parasitic mites, the Varroa destructor and the

  12. Functional decline in old age

    PubMed Central

    Hébert, R

    1997-01-01

    Functional decline is a common condition, occurring each year in nearly 12% of Canadians 75 years of age and older. The model of functional health proposed by the World Health Organization (WHO) represents a useful theoretical framework and is the basis for the SMAF (Système de measure de l'autonomie fonctionelle or Functional Autonomy Measurement System), an instrument that measures functional autonomy. The functional decline syndrome, in which functional autonomy is diminished or lost, may present as an acute condition, i.e., a medical emergency for which the patient must be admitted to a geriatric assessment unit. The subacute form is a more insidious condition in which the patient requires comprehensive assessment and a rehabilitation program. A preventive approach based on screening of those at risk and early intervention should prevent or delay the appearance of functional decline or diminish its consequences. Effective strategies for the prevention of or rehabilitation from functional decline will help reduce the incidence of disabilities and the period of dependence near the end of life. These strategies are absolute prerequisites for controlling sociohealth expenses and, most importantly, for allowing people to live independently in old age. PMID:9347774

  13. Declining Enrollment--A Blessing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Imhof, Howard E.

    This report describes how a New York school district took advantage of a decline in elementary school enrollment to restructure the district's educational program, reduce staff requirements, and eliminate double shifting at the district's junior high and high school. The district's plan involved closing one of the three elementary schools and…

  14. Forest decline from air pollution

    SciTech Connect

    Hileman, B.

    1984-01-01

    Scientists in West Germany and the USA are involved in intensive efforts to ascertain the cause or causes of the declines in their forests. Ongoing research was discussed at an October 1983 symposium on air pollution and forest productivity, held in Washington, D.C., and sponsored by the Izaak Walton League of America and Pennsylvania State University. The dieback of spruce in the Northeast is relatively well-known. It was revealed at the symposium, however, that forests in other areas of the U.S. may be showing signs of stress and damage and that species other than spruce are affected. Samuel B. McLaughlin of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) pointed out that red spruce, shortleaf pine, hickory, yellow birch, pitch pine, hemlock, and Fraser fir are declining in East Tennessee. He noted that these decline together with those in New England suggest that decreased productivity in several tree species has been occurring over a broad scale during the past two decades. One commonly held view is that acid deposition is causing the decline of forests in both Europe and the U.S. At the symposium, a number of different opinions about possible causes were expressed, ranging from drought to ozone to combinations of pollutants, including acid deposition, ozone and trace metals. Possible causes that were not subjects of active inquiry were disease and insects. Most researchers in the field believe there is little evidence that one of these is the primary damaging agent.

  15. Impact of Declining Rural Infrastructure.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McKenzie, Fiona Haslem

    A study investigated the impact of declining rural community infrastructure on social, environmental, and economic well-being in Western Australia's central wheatbelt. Questionnaires were completed by 398 residents of the central wheatbelt, on-farm interviews were conducted with 68 respondents, and 4 focus groups were held in area towns.…

  16. The Decline of the Audience.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jensen, Marvin D.

    The decline of manners prevalent in American audiences can be reversed only by finding and addressing the causes for poor behavior. One theory suggests that social stresses have a ripple effect, eroding generosity and spawning a meanness of spirit that is eventually reflected in audience behavior. A related theory suggests that audience rudeness…

  17. Declining Sunshine for Phoenix Lander

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2008-09-30

    The yellow line on this graphic indicates the number of hours of sunlight each sol, or Martian day, beginning with the entire Martian day about 24 hours and 40 minutes for the first 90 sols, then declining to no sunlight by about sol 300.

  18. Chinese culture and fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Wu, C; Jia, S

    1992-01-01

    Coale has suggested that cultural factors exert a significant influence on fertility reduction; countries in the "Chinese cultural circle" would be the first to show fertility decline. In China, the view was that traditional Chinese culture contributed to increased population. This paper examines the nature of the relationship between Chinese culture and fertility. Attention was directed to a comparison of fertility rates of developing countries with strong Chinese cultural influence and of fertility within different regions of China. Discussion was followed by an explanation of the theoretical impact of Chinese culture on fertility and direct and indirect beliefs and practices that might either enhance or hinder fertility decline. Emigration to neighboring countries occurred after the Qing dynasty. Fertility after the 1950s declined markedly in Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, and mainland China: all countries within the Chinese cultural circle. Other countries within the Chinese circle which have higher fertility, yet lower fertility than other non-Chinese cultural countries, are Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. Within China, regions with similar fertility patterns are identified as coastal regions, central plains, and mountainous and plateau regions. The Han ethnic group has lower fertility than that of ethnic minorities; regions with large Han populations have lower fertility. Overseas Chinese in East Asian countries also tend to have lower fertility than their host populations. Chinese culture consisted of the assimilation of other cultures over 5000 years. Fertility decline was dependent on the population's desire to limit reproduction, favorable social mechanisms, and availability of contraception: all factors related to economic development. Chinese culture affects fertility reduction by affecting reproductive views and social mechanisms directly, and indirectly through economics. Confucianism emphasizes collectivism, self

  19. Predicting Succession under Conditions of Enrollment Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berger, Michael A.

    1984-01-01

    Using 56 school districts that experienced enrollment declines, this study describes the variables in superintendent succession amidst declining enrollments and locates the strongest predictors of succession. (JW)

  20. Spatial relationships in a dendritic network: the herpetofaunal metacommunity of the Mattole River catchment of northwest California.

    Treesearch

    Hartwell Welsh; Garth Hodgson

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the aquatic and riparian herpetofauna in a 789 km² river catchment in northwest California to examine competing theories of biotic community structuring in catchment stream networks. Research in fluvial geomorphology has resulted in multi-scale models of dynamic processes that cyclically create, maintain, and destroy environments in stream...

  1. Decline of the oil cartel

    SciTech Connect

    Fieleke, N.S.

    1986-07-01

    A review of the development that led to the current decline in oil prices concludes that sharp relative price changes have been a major source of world economic instability for the past 13 years. The results for oil-importing countries have been cycles of inflation and contraction followed by inflation and rapid growth. Some see the recent price decline as an effort by OPEC to regain enough power to bring about an eventual price rise. Although past price and production relationships indicate that OPEC has operated as a cartel, the author sees current efforts to persuade non-OPEC producers to lower their production as an indication of weakness. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve could help the US cope with any future supply disruption. 7 figures, 3 tables.

  2. Normal cognitive decline or dementia?

    PubMed

    Ebmeier, Klaus P

    2010-01-01

    Cognitive speed, inhibitory function, and memory decline with age while crystallised, particularly verbal, abilities remain largely intact. Poor health, fewer years of education, lower activity, the presence of the APOE E4 allele, and high BP appear to predict faster cognitive decline. Dementia is diagnosed in the presence of objective cognitive impairment, both long- and short-term memory, plus at least one additional (cortical) cognitive deficit, such as dysphasia, dyspraxia, agnosia, or disturbance in executive functioning. In addition, patients have to show significant impairment in social or occupational functioning and a significant decline from previous levels. Both smoking and diabetes increase the risk of all types of dementia, not smoking or even stopping smoking reduces this risk, but better control of type 2 diabetes does not appear to have a measurable effect. Drinking small to moderate amounts of alcohol appears to confer some benefit in ameliorating cognitive decline. There is some evidence that HRT, DHEA, BP lowering in patients without prior cerebrovascular disease, statins, vitamin B6 and procaine are NOT helpful. There is insufficient evidence to establish or refute a beneficial effect for exercise, treatment of type 2 diabetes, omega-3 fatty acids, folic acid with/without vitamin B12, antioxidant vitamins, or ginkgo biloba. Depressive symptoms are more prevalent than dementia. Clinical (major) depression can present with cognitive deterioration, often associated with subjective complaints. Patients with subjective or objective memory impairment, but without functional deterioration, can be referred to the local memory clinic, while demented patients eligible for acetylcholinesterase inhibitor treatment, patients whose diagnosis is unclear and who may need some specific investigations, as well as patients who may benefit from a combined approach with psychotropic drugs and behavioural support should be referred to the local mental health team.

  3. Intracerebral haemorrhage and cognitive decline.

    PubMed

    Murao, K; Rossi, C; Cordonnier, C

    2013-10-01

    Relationships between intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) and dementia might be of interest since some causes of ICH such as cerebral amyloid angiopathy are strongly linked with dementia, especially Alzheimer's disease. The aim of this narrative review was to highlight the interesting relationship of ICH lesions and cognitive decline leading to dementia. We considered the whole spectrum of hemorrhagic lesions in the brain parenchyma, namely spontaneous ICH and brain microbleeds. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  4. Declining interstitial transsudation in man

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demarchin, P.; Lagneaux, D.; Lecomte, J.

    1980-01-01

    Results and methodology of experimentation dealing with declining interstitial transsudation are discussed. Concepts of the formation of interstitial fluids are in agreement with measurements of calf volume in normal young women, in horizontal recumbency or after horizontal immersion. The volume of the calf is reduced when the hydrostatic pressure of the blood column is diminished under the phlebostatic level and when the external pressure is increased by the hydrostatic pressure of a water bath.

  5. Cognitive decline in Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Aarsland, Dag; Creese, Byron; Politis, Marios; Chaudhuri, K Ray; Ffytche, Dominic H; Weintraub, Daniel; Ballard, Clive

    2017-04-01

    Dementia is a frequent problem encountered in advanced stages of Parkinson disease (PD). In recent years, research has focused on the pre-dementia stages of cognitive impairment in PD, including mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Several longitudinal studies have shown that MCI is a harbinger of dementia in PD, although the course is variable, and stabilization of cognition - or even reversal to normal cognition - is not uncommon. In addition to limbic and cortical spread of Lewy pathology, several other mechanisms are likely to contribute to cognitive decline in PD, and a variety of biomarker studies, some using novel structural and functional imaging techniques, have documented in vivo brain changes associated with cognitive impairment. The evidence consistently suggests that low cerebrospinal fluid levels of amyloid-β42, a marker of comorbid Alzheimer disease (AD), predict future cognitive decline and dementia in PD. Emerging genetic evidence indicates that in addition to the APOE*ε4 allele (an established risk factor for AD), GBA mutations and SCNA mutations and triplications are associated with cognitive decline in PD, whereas the findings are mixed for MAPT polymorphisms. Cognitive enhancing medications have some effect in PD dementia, but no convincing evidence that progression from MCI to dementia can be delayed or prevented is available, although cognitive training has shown promising results.

  6. Emergence and Decline of Scientific Paradigms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bornholdt, S.; Jensen, M. H.; Sneppen, K.

    2011-02-01

    Scientific paradigms have a tendency to rise fast and decline slowly. This asymmetry reflects the difficulty in developing a truly original idea, compared to the ease at which a concept can be eroded by numerous modifications. Here we formulate a model for the emergence and spread of ideas which deals with this asymmetry by constraining the ability of agents to return to already abandoned concepts. The model exhibits a fairly regular pattern of global paradigm shifts, where older paradigms are eroded and subsequently replaced by new ones. The model sets the theme for a new class of pattern formation models, where local dynamics breaks the detailed balance in a way that prevents old states from defending themselves against new nucleating or invading states. The model allows for frozen events in terms of the coexistence of multiple metastable states.

  7. The fertility decline in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Robinson, W C; Harbison, S F

    1995-01-01

    In Sub-Saharan Africa Kenya is a prime example of a country experiencing a rapid decline in fertility and greater contraceptive prevalence. These changes have occurred since 1980 when fertility was high at 8.0 children per woman. In 1993 the total fertility rate (TFR) was 5.4, and the growth rate declined to about 2.0%. This transition is swifter than any country in contemporary Asia or historical Europe. The likely projection for Kenya is attainment of replacement level fertility during the 2020s and a leveling of population at about 100 million persons. Fertility has declined the most in urban areas and central and eastern regions. Bongaarts' proximate determinants (TFR, total marital fertility rate, total natural marital fertility rate, and total fecundity) are reduced to the proportion of currently married women using contraception, the proportion in lactational nonfecund status, and the proportion currently married. Actual fertility change is accounted for by total fertility change of 3.0 children. Lactational infecundability accounts for 0.5 potential births, and changes in marital fertility account for 1.0 reduced births per woman. About 70% of fertility reduction is accounted for by contraception and abortion. During 1977-78 80% of fertility control was due to lactational nonfecundity, 10% to nonmarriage, and 10% to contraception. In 1993 lactational nonfecundity accounted for 50% of the reduction, nonmarriage for 20%, and abortion about 30%. Future fertility is expected to be dependent on contraceptive prevalence. Kenya has experienced the Coale paradigm of preconditions necessary for demographic transition (willing, ready, and able). High fertility in Africa is not intractable. Creating the change in attitudes that leads to readiness is linked to education, health, and exposure to modernizing media and urban lifestyles. The public sector family planning program in Kenya has created the opportunity for access and availability of contraception. The key

  8. Trypanosoma cruzi reservoir—triatomine vector co-occurrence networks reveal meta-community effects by synanthropic mammals on geographic dispersal

    PubMed Central

    Valiente-Banuet, Leopoldo; Sánchez-Cordero, Víctor; Stephens, Christopher R.

    2017-01-01

    Contemporary patterns of land use and global climate change are modifying regional pools of parasite host species. The impact of host community changes on human disease risk, however, is difficult to assess due to a lack of information about zoonotic parasite host assemblages. We have used a recently developed method to infer parasite-host interactions for Chagas Disease (CD) from vector-host co-occurrence networks. Vector-host networks were constructed to analyze topological characteristics of the network and ecological traits of species’ nodes, which could provide information regarding parasite regional dispersal in Mexico. Twenty-eight triatomine species (vectors) and 396 mammal species (potential hosts) were included using a data-mining approach to develop models to infer most-likely interactions. The final network contained 1,576 links which were analyzed to calculate centrality, connectivity, and modularity. The model predicted links of independently registered Trypanosoma cruzi hosts, which correlated with the degree of parasite-vector co-occurrence. Wiring patterns differed according to node location, while edge density was greater in Neotropical as compared to Nearctic regions. Vectors with greatest public health importance (i.e., Triatoma dimidiata, T. barberi, T. pallidipennis, T. longipennis, etc), did not have stronger links with particular host species, although they had a greater frequency of significant links. In contrast, hosts classified as important based on network properties were synanthropic mammals. The latter were the most common parasite hosts and are likely bridge species between these communities, thereby integrating meta-community scenarios beneficial for long-range parasite dispersal. This was particularly true for rodents, >50% of species are synanthropic and more than 20% have been identified as T. cruzi hosts. In addition to predicting potential host species using the co-occurrence networks, they reveal regions with greater

  9. An extended patch-dynamic framework for food chains in fragmented landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Jinbao; Chen, Jiehong; Ying, Zhixia; Hiebeler, David E.; Nijs, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Habitat destruction, a key determinant of species loss, can be characterized by two components, patch loss and patch fragmentation, where the former refers to the reduction in patch availability, and the latter to the division of the remaining patches. Classical metacommunity models have recently explored how food web dynamics respond to patch loss, but the effects of patch fragmentation have largely been overlooked. Here we develop an extended patch-dynamic model that tracks the patch occupancy of the various trophic links subject to colonization-extinction-predation dynamics by incorporating species dispersal with patch connectivity. We found that, in a simple food chain, species at higher trophic level become extinct sooner with increasing patch loss and fragmentation due to the constraint in resource availability, confirming the trophic rank hypothesis. Yet, effects of fragmentation on species occupancy are largely determined by patch loss, with maximal fragmentation effects occurring at intermediate patch loss. Compared to the spatially explicit simulations that we also performed, the current model with pair approximation generates similar community patterns especially in spatially clustered landscapes. Overall, our extended framework can be applied to model more complex food webs in fragmented landscapes, broadening the scope of existing metacommunity theory. PMID:27608823

  10. An extended patch-dynamic framework for food chains in fragmented landscapes.

    PubMed

    Liao, Jinbao; Chen, Jiehong; Ying, Zhixia; Hiebeler, David E; Nijs, Ivan

    2016-09-09

    Habitat destruction, a key determinant of species loss, can be characterized by two components, patch loss and patch fragmentation, where the former refers to the reduction in patch availability, and the latter to the division of the remaining patches. Classical metacommunity models have recently explored how food web dynamics respond to patch loss, but the effects of patch fragmentation have largely been overlooked. Here we develop an extended patch-dynamic model that tracks the patch occupancy of the various trophic links subject to colonization-extinction-predation dynamics by incorporating species dispersal with patch connectivity. We found that, in a simple food chain, species at higher trophic level become extinct sooner with increasing patch loss and fragmentation due to the constraint in resource availability, confirming the trophic rank hypothesis. Yet, effects of fragmentation on species occupancy are largely determined by patch loss, with maximal fragmentation effects occurring at intermediate patch loss. Compared to the spatially explicit simulations that we also performed, the current model with pair approximation generates similar community patterns especially in spatially clustered landscapes. Overall, our extended framework can be applied to model more complex food webs in fragmented landscapes, broadening the scope of existing metacommunity theory.

  11. Dietary Factors and Cognitive Decline.

    PubMed

    Smith, P J; Blumenthal, J A

    2016-03-01

    Cognitive decline is an increasingly important public health problem, with more than 100 million adults worldwide projected to develop dementia by 2050. Accordingly, there has been an increased interest in preventive strategies that diminish this risk. It has been recognized that lifestyle factors including dietary patterns, may be important in the prevention of cognitive decline and dementia in later life. Several dietary components have been examined, including antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins. In addition, whole dietary eating plans, including the Mediterranean diet (MeDi), and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, with and without weight loss, have become areas of increasing interest. Although prospective epidemiological studies have observed that antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins are associated with better cognitive functioning, randomized clinical trials have generally failed to confirm the value of any specific dietary component in improving neurocognition. Several randomized trials have examined the impact of changing 'whole' diets on cognitive outcomes. The MeDi and DASH diets offer promising preliminary results, but data are limited and more research in this area is needed.

  12. Dietary Factors and Cognitive Decline

    PubMed Central

    Smith, P.J.; Blumenthal, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive decline is an increasingly important public health problem, with more than 100 million adults worldwide projected to develop dementia by 2050. Accordingly, there has been an increased interest in preventive strategies that diminish this risk. It has been recognized that lifestyle factors including dietary patterns, may be important in the prevention of cognitive decline and dementia in later life. Several dietary components have been examined, including antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins. In addition, whole dietary eating plans, including the Mediterranean diet (MeDi), and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, with and without weight loss, have become areas of increasing interest. Although prospective epidemiological studies have observed that antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins are associated with better cognitive functioning, randomized clinical trials have generally failed to confirm the value of any specific dietary component in improving neurocognition. Several randomized trials have examined the impact of changing ‘whole’ diets on cognitive outcomes. The MeDi and DASH diets offer promising preliminary results, but data are limited and more research in this area is needed. PMID:26900574

  13. Recent advances in explaining fertility declines in the third world.

    PubMed

    Sharma, R K

    1984-01-01

    , following the work of Caldwell, to include the development of contextually and historically relevant theories of fertility decline that use methodologies which emphasize the importance of context in interpretation and understanding the factors responsible for fertility decline. Such an approach would also make the comparative testing of these theories considerably more meaningful. The context must be thought of in dynamic terms. A fundamental weakness shared by the theories reviewed is that they fail to explain fertility decline in terms of a broader theory of social and economic change. This is essential for fertility decline is part and parcel of the social change process.

  14. Ways of Dealing with Enrollment Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phi Delta Kappan, 1978

    1978-01-01

    Two consultants and superintendents from Livonia (Michigan), New Orleans, Salt Lake City, and Seattle discuss the impact of declining enrollments on the schools and some of the actions school districts are taking to cope with the decline. (IRT)

  15. Declining Sunshine for Phoenix Lander

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The yellow line on this graphic indicates the number of hours of sunlight each sol, or Martian day, at the Phoenix landing site's far-northern latitude, beginning with the entire Martian day (about 24 hours and 40 minutes) for the first 90 sols, then declining to no sunlight by about sol 300. The blue tick mark indicates that on Sol 124 (Sept. 29, 2008), the sun is above the horizon for about 20 hours.

    The brown vertical bar represents the period from Nov. 18 to Dec. 24, 2008, around the 'solar conjunction,' when the sun is close to the line between Mars and Earth, affecting communications.

    The green vertical rectangle represents the period from February to November 2009 when the Phoenix lander is expected to be encased in carbon-dioxide ice.

  16. [Functional decline in older people].

    PubMed

    Wada, Taizo

    2013-10-01

    World Health Organization(WHO) proposed to be used as an index of the health of elderly independence of functioning. Basic activities of daily living (BADL), such as bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring, continence, and feeding are well known as the functioning of the elderly. However, not only BADL, there are a variety of levels, such as the ability to play a social role, intellectual activities and instrumental activities of daily living (IADL), which are components of the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence(TMIG-IC). Functional decline in older people is associated with age, gender, depression, up and go test and manual dexterity. Smoking, body-mass index, and exercise patterns in midlife and late adulthood are predictors of subsequent disability.

  17. Declining Sunshine for Phoenix Lander

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The yellow line on this graphic indicates the number of hours of sunlight each sol, or Martian day, at the Phoenix landing site's far-northern latitude, beginning with the entire Martian day (about 24 hours and 40 minutes) for the first 90 sols, then declining to no sunlight by about sol 300. The blue tick mark indicates that on Sol 124 (Sept. 29, 2008), the sun is above the horizon for about 20 hours.

    The brown vertical bar represents the period from Nov. 18 to Dec. 24, 2008, around the 'solar conjunction,' when the sun is close to the line between Mars and Earth, affecting communications.

    The green vertical rectangle represents the period from February to November 2009 when the Phoenix lander is expected to be encased in carbon-dioxide ice.

  18. Adult attachment and declining birthrates.

    PubMed

    Draper, Thomas W; Holman, Thomas B; White, Whitney; Grandy, Shannon

    2007-02-01

    Attachment scores for 658 young adults living in the U.S.A. were obtained using the Experiences in Close Relationships scale. The participants came from a subsample of the RELATE data set, who had also filled out the adult attachment measure. Those young adults living in Utah County, Utah, an area of the country with a higher than normal birthrate (88% members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), also had higher than average adult attachment scores. While the methodology was not sufficient to assess causal direction nor eliminate the possibility of unidentified influences, an undiscussed psychological factor, adult attachment, may play a role in the numerical declines observed among nonimmigrant communities in the USA and Europe.

  19. Predictors of Organizational Responses to Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parker, Barbara; Zammuto, Raymond F.

    Results of research on predictors of organizational responses to declining enrollments at 56 small to medium-sized colleges and universities are discussed. Decline was experienced from 1978-1979 to 1981-1982. Severity of decline was selected as an objective predictor of organizational response, while internal agreement on mission and attributions…

  20. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 31 Money and Finance:Treasury 2 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Declination protest. 240.7 Section 240... STATES TREASURY General Provisions § 240.7 Declination protest. (a) Who may protest. Only a presenting bank may protest the declination of a check that it has presented to a Federal Reserve Bank for payment...

  1. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 31 Money and Finance:Treasury 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Declination protest. 240.7 Section 240... STATES TREASURY General Provisions § 240.7 Declination protest. (a) Who may protest. Only a presenting bank may protest the declination of a check that it has presented to a Federal Reserve Bank for payment...

  2. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 31 Money and Finance:Treasury 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Declination protest. 240.7 Section 240... STATES TREASURY General Provisions § 240.7 Declination protest. (a) Who may protest. Only a presenting bank may protest the declination of a check that it has presented to a Federal Reserve Bank for payment...

  3. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 31 Money and Finance: Treasury 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Declination protest. 240.7 Section... STATES TREASURY General Provisions § 240.7 Declination protest. (a) Who may protest. Only a presenting bank may protest the declination of a check that it has presented to a Federal Reserve Bank for payment...

  4. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 31 Money and Finance: Treasury 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Declination protest. 240.7 Section... STATES TREASURY General Provisions § 240.7 Declination protest. (a) Who may protest. Only a presenting bank may protest the declination of a check that it has presented to a Federal Reserve Bank for payment...

  5. Advancing plant phenology and reduced herbivore production in a terrestrial system associated with sea ice decline.

    PubMed

    Kerby, Jeffrey T; Post, Eric

    2013-01-01

    The contribution of declining Arctic sea ice to warming in the region through Arctic amplification suggests that sea ice decline has the potential to influence ecological dynamics in terrestrial Arctic systems. Empirical evidence for such effects is limited, however, particularly at the local population and community levels. Here we identify an Arctic sea ice signal in the annual timing of vegetation emergence at an inland tundra system in West Greenland. According to the time series analyses presented here, an ongoing advance in plant phenology at this site is attributable to the accelerating decline in Arctic sea ice, and contributes to declining large herbivore reproductive performance via trophic mismatch. Arctic-wide sea ice metrics consistently outperform other regional and local abiotic variables in models characterizing these dynamics, implicating large-scale Arctic sea ice decline as a potentially important, albeit indirect, contributor to local-scale ecological dynamics on land.

  6. Changes in forest structure associated with oak decline in severely impacted areas of northern Arkansas

    Treesearch

    Eric Heitzman; Adrian Grell; Martin Spetich; Dale Starkey

    2007-01-01

    Four mature northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.)–white oak (Quercus alba L.) stands in the Boston Mountains of northern Arkansas were studied to describe the vegetation dynamics of forests heavily impacted by oak decline. Northern red oak was the species most susceptible to decline. Across the four stands, 51–75% of red oak density...

  7. Responses of riparian cottonwoods to alluvial water table declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scott, M.L.; Shafroth, P.B.; Auble, G.T.

    1999-01-01

    Human demands for surface and shallow alluvial groundwater have contributed to the loss, fragmentation, and simplification of riparian ecosystems. Populus species typically dominate riparian ecosystems throughout arid and semiarid regions of North American and efforts to minimize loss of riparian Populus requires an integrated understanding of the role of surface and groundwater dynamics in the establishment of new, and maintenance of existing, stands. In a controlled, whole-stand field experiment, we quantified responses of Populus morphology, growth, and mortality to water stress resulting from sustained water table decline following in-channel sand mining along an ephemeral sandbed stream in eastern Colorado, USA. We measured live crown volume, radial stem growth, annual branch increment, and mortality of 689 live Populus deltoides subsp. monilifera stems over four years in conjunction with localized water table declines. Measurements began one year prior to mining and included trees in both affected and unaffected areas. Populus demonstrated a threshold response to water table declines in medium alluvial sands; sustained declines ???1 m produced leaf desiccation and branch dieback within three weeks and significant declines in live crown volume, stem growth, and 88% mortality over a three-year period. Declines in live Crown volume proved to be a significant leading indicator of mortality in the following year. A logistic regression of tree survival probability against the prior year's live crown volume was significant (-2 log likelihood = 270, ??2 with 1 df = 232, P < 0.0001) and trees with absolute declines in live crown volume of ???30 during one year had survival probabilities <0.5 in the following year. In contrast, more gradual water table declines of ~0.5 m had no measurable effect on mortality, stem growth, or live crown volume and produced significant declines only in annual branch growth increments. Developing quantitative information on the timing and

  8. Mortality rates decline in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    1991-11-01

    Experiencing remarkable decreases in mortality rates over the past 3 decades, Malaysia currently has one of the lowest mortality rates among developing countries, a rate that compares favorably with those of developed countries. Between 1957 and 1989, the crude death rate dropped from 12.4/1000 population to 4.6. Over the same period, Malaysia recorded even greater decreases in the infant mortality rate, from 75.5/1000 births to 15.2. The Maternal mortality rate also declined from 1.48 in 1970 to 0.24 in 1988. The data indicates that mortality rates vary from state to state, and that rural areas have a higher mortality than urban areas. According to a study by the National Population and Family Development Board, the use of maternal and child health services has played an important role in reducing neonatal, perinatal, infant, child, and maternal mortality rates. Nearly all women in Malaysia receive antenatal services. While the country has achieved great gains on mortality rates, programs focusing on specific age and socioeconomic groups could lead to even greater reductions. The Minister for National Unity and Social Development, Dato Napsiah Omar, has called for the development of programs designed to improve the population's quality of life.

  9. [Concentration or decline in Puebla?].

    PubMed

    Cabrera Becerra, V

    1993-04-01

    Some doubts have been expressed over whether the slowing pace of urbanization suggested by the 1990 census of Mexico was an accurate reflection of changing conditions, or whether it resulted from some intentional or unintended bias. Comparison of data from succeeding censuses indicates that the growth rate of the city of Puebla declined from 6.32% in 1980 to 2.63% in 1990. This work argues that, in Puebla, a trend to deconcentration of the population within the city of Puebla during the 1980s was accompanied by rapid growth in smaller and medium sized nearby cities, resulting in increased overall concentration in Puebla's metropolitan area. The absolute population of the city of Puebla increased from 772,908 in 1980 to 1,007,170 in 1990. The central area of the state of Puebla, which surrounds the city, increased its share of the state population from 51.67% in 1980 to 52.21% in 1990. The number of places with over 5000 inhabitants in the area surrounding the city of Puebla increased from 27 in 1980 to 39 in 1990. Construction of the Puebla-Atlixco highway will undoubtedly attract growth to the area southwest of Puebla. Small cities to the east of Puebla have shown significant growth although their region remains strongly rural. The same process of deconcentration of population in Puebla and concentration in its surrounding metropolitan regions can probably also be detected in patterns of investment of public funds. The trend is likely to continue through the 1990s.

  10. Why health care workers decline influenza vaccination.

    PubMed

    Moore, Brenda S

    2009-11-01

    Influenza vaccine is essential to preventing influenza among health care workers and their patients. Therefore, the staff of the employee health clinic worked diligently to provide an opportunity for all employees to receive influenza vaccinations. Despite these efforts, a significant percentage of employees declined the vaccine. During the 2007-2008 influenza season, employees were instructed to either receive the influenza vaccine or decline in writing. The vaccination rate for all staff members and direct caregivers, during the 2007-2008 vaccination season, was 52%, with 35% declining and 13% not participating. In response to the 35% declining, data were analyzed to develop an effective educational tool focused on reasons for declination. This article presents an overview of the study, the reasons employees declined influenza vaccine, and strategies for improving vaccination rates. Copyright 2009, SLACK Incorporated.

  11. Cognitive Issues: Decline, Delirium, Depression, Dementia.

    PubMed

    Harris, Melodee

    2017-09-01

    Cognitive decline in older persons can be pathologic or occur as a part of the normal aging process. Delirium, depression, and dementia are geriatric syndromes and neurocognitive disorders that are the result of cognitive decline associated with pathology. This overview is a brief guide on cognitive decline and how to identify, manage, and treat associated neurocognitive disorders, including delirium, depression, and dementia. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Scaling rules for the final decline to extinction.

    PubMed

    Griffen, Blaine D; Drake, John M

    2009-04-07

    Space-time scaling rules are ubiquitous in ecological phenomena. Current theory postulates three scaling rules that describe the duration of a population's final decline to extinction, although these predictions have not previously been empirically confirmed. We examine these scaling rules across a broader set of conditions, including a wide range of density-dependent patterns in the underlying population dynamics. We then report on tests of these predictions from experiments using the cladoceran Daphnia magna as a model. Our results support two predictions that: (i) the duration of population persistence is much greater than the duration of the final decline to extinction and (ii) the duration of the final decline to extinction increases with the logarithm of the population's estimated carrying capacity. However, our results do not support a third prediction that the duration of the final decline scales inversely with population growth rate. These findings not only support the current standard theory of population extinction but also introduce new empirical anomalies awaiting a theoretical explanation.

  13. Evidence of disease-related amphibian decline in Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, Erin; Corn, Paul Stephen; Pessier, Allan P.; Green, D. Earl

    2003-01-01

    The recent discovery of a pathogenic fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) associated with declines of frogs in the American and Australian tropics, suggests that at least the proximate cause, may be known for many previously unexplained amphibian declines. We have monitored boreal toads in Colorado since 1991 at four sites using capturea??recapture of adults and counts of egg masses to examine the dynamics of this metapopulation. Numbers of male toads declined in 1996 and 1999 with annual survival rate averaging 78% from 1991 to 1994, 45% in 1995 and 3% between 1998 and 1999. Numbers of egg masses also declined. An etiological diagnosis of chytridiomycosis consistent with infections by the genus Batrachochytrium was made in six wild adult toads. Characteristic histomorphological features (i.e. intracellular location, shape of thalli, presence of discharge tubes and rhizoids) of chytrid organisms, and host tissue response (acanthosis and hyperkeratosis) were observed in individual toads. These characteristics were indistinguishable from previously reported mortality events associated with chytrid fungus. We also observed epizootiological features consistent with mortality events associated with chytrid fungus: an increase in the ratio of female:male toads captured, an apparent spread of mortalities within the metapopulation and mortalities restricted to post metamorphic animals. Eleven years of population data suggest that this metapopulation of toads is in danger of extinction, pathological and epizootiological evidence indicates that B. dendrobatidis has played a proximate role in this process

  14. Drought-induced forest decline: causes, scope and implications

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Vilalta, Jordi; Lloret, Francisco; Breshears, David D.

    2012-01-01

    A large number of episodes of forest mortality associated with drought and heat stress have been detected worldwide in recent decades, suggesting that some of the world's forested ecosystems may be already responding to climate change. Here, we summarize a special session titled ‘Drought-induced forest decline: causes, scope and implications’ within the 12th European Ecological Federation Congress, held in Ávila (Spain) from 25 to 29 September 2011. The session focused on the interacting causes and impacts of die-off episodes at the community and ecosystem levels, and highlighted recent events of drought- and heat-related tree decline, advances in understanding mechanisms and in predicting mortality events, and diverse consequences of forest decline. Talks and subsequent discussion noted a potentially important role of carbon that may be interrelated with plant hydraulics in the multi-faceted process leading to drought-induced mortality; a substantial and yet understudied capacity of many forests to cope with extreme climatic events; and the difficulty of separating climate effects from other anthropogenic changes currently shaping forest dynamics in many regions of the Earth. The need for standard protocols and multi-level monitoring programmes to track the spatio-temporal scope of forest decline globally was emphasized as critical for addressing this emerging environmental issue. PMID:22171020

  15. Forest declines in response to environmental change

    Treesearch

    Philip M. Wargo; Allan N.D. Auclair

    2000-01-01

    Decline diseases are intimately linked to stress and environmental change. There is strong evidence that, as a category, decline diseases have increased significantly in response to the climate, air chemistry, and other changes documented in the northeastern United States over the past century, and particularly the last two decades. No other forest response to...

  16. Declining Undergraduate Student Performance in Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spinelli, Teri

    Factors contributing to declining academic performance of college students are considered, including: increased government intervention in education, declining faculty expectations and lowered standards, administrative policies, and changing student attitudes and expectations. One view is that government is largely responsible for the…

  17. Nutritional factors associated with decline in Canada

    Treesearch

    Benoit Cote

    1999-01-01

    Forest decline in eastern Canada was particuiarly severe in the early 1980's and is still prevalent in some areas (Bowers and Hopkin 1997). Early public and scientific opinions on the causes of forest decline were often not based on sound scientific knowledge. Factors such as acidic precipitation and ozone were rnost often mentioned as direct causes of forest...

  18. Decline of Ohia Lehua forests in Hawaii

    Treesearch

    Robert E. Burgan; Robert E. Nelson

    1972-01-01

    Thousands of acres of ohia lehua (Metrosidems collina) forests on the island of Hawaii have died, and tree death is progressing rapidly into healthy forests. Most of the losses are on State-owned lands. All of the "ohia decline" cannot be attributed to the same agent. Some of the earlier decline was attributed to frost and sulphur dioxide....

  19. Aging, Terminal Decline, and Terminal Drop

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palmore, Erdman; Cleveland, William

    1976-01-01

    Data from a 20-year longitudinal study of persons over 60 were analyzed by step-wise multiple regression to test for declines in function with age, for terminal decline (linear relationship to time before death), and for terminal drop (curvilinear relationship to time before death). There were no substantial terminal drop effects. (Author)

  20. Reversing Africa's Decline. Worldwatch Paper 65.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Lester R.; Wolf, Edward C.

    This paper highlights some of the themes that any successful strategy to reverse the decline of Africa must embrace. Africa is a continent experiencing a breakdown in the relationship between people and their natural support systems. Famine and the threat of famine are among the manifestations of this breakdown. This decline can be reversed. To do…

  1. Amphibian decline in Yellowstone National Park

    Treesearch

    Debra A. Patla; Charles R. Peterson; Paul Stephen Corn

    2009-01-01

    We conduct long-term amphibian monitoring in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) (1) and read McMenamin et al.'s article (2) with interest. This study documents decline in the extent of seasonal wetlands in the Lamar Valley of YNP during extended drought, but the conclusion, widely reported in the media, of "severe declines in 4 once-common amphibian species,...

  2. Is University Research on the Decline?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferne, Georges

    1980-01-01

    Decline in research emphasis in universities is tied to a number of factors: defensive apathy in the university scientific community; weakening links between teaching and research; declining enrollments; problems in interdisciplinary work; employment stability and aging faculty, obsolete equipment, support staff reduction, and growing bureaucracy.…

  3. Novelty Seeking in Adulthood: Increases Accompany Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reio, Thomas G., Jr.; Choi, Namok

    2004-01-01

    Using stereotypes, researchers have predicted that novelty seeking declines in adulthood. Through this cross-sectional study, the authors revealed that only the external sensational type of novelty seeking declined, whereas the internal sensational and internal and external cognitive types remained stable or increased. A population of 233 adults…

  4. Climate Variations and Alaska Tundra Vegetation Productivity Declines in Spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    While sea ice has continued to decline, vegetation productivity increases have declined particularly during spring in Alaska as well as many parts of the Arctic tundra. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate spring climate variations that includes temperature, circulation patterns, and snow cover to determine how these may be contributing to spring browning. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2014. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), atmospheric reanalysis data, dynamically downscaled climate data, meteorological station data, and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set). We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2014) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2014), which were chosen based on the declining Alaska SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2014 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2014 southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but display widespread declines over the 1999-2014 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999 and these declines are particularly noteworthy during spring in Alaska. Spring declines in Alaska have been linked to increased spring snow cover that can delay greenup (Bieniek et al. 2015) but recent ground observations suggest that after an initial warming and greening, late season freezing temperature are damaging the plants. The late season freezing temperature hypothesis will be explored with meteorological climate/weather data sets for Alaska tundra regions. References P.A. Bieniek, US Bhatt, DA Walker, MK Raynolds, JC Comiso, HE Epstein, JE Pinzon, CJ Tucker, RL Thoman, H Tran, N M

  5. The perception of fundamental frequency declination.

    PubMed

    Pierrehumbert, J

    1979-08-01

    A series of experiments was carried out to investigate how fundamental frequency declination is perceived by speakers of English. Using linear predictor coded speech, nonsense sentences were constructed in which fundamental frequency on the last stressed syllable had been systematically varied. Listeners were asked to judge which stressed syllable was higher in pitch. Their judgments were found to reflect normalization for expected declination; in general, when two stressed syllables sounded equal in pitch, the second was actually lower. The pattern of normalization reflected certain major features of production patterns: A greater correction for declination was made for wide pitch range stimuli than for narrow pitch range stimuli. The slope of expected declination was less for longer stimuli than for shorter ones. Lastly, amplitude was found to have a significant effect on judgments, suggesting that the amplitude downdrift which normally accompanies fundamental frequency declination may have an important role in the perception of phrasing.

  6. Generating a Positive Response to Declining Resources: 50 Tips for Success in a Declining School District.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lasher, Gaylord C.

    Based on the author's research and experience with organizational decline, this speech discusses research on managing declining schools and provides a framework for thinking about decline. The long period of abundance between World War II and the middle 1970s shaped American character and accustomed its leaders, including school administrators, to…

  7. Theoretical Analysis of Maximum Flow Declination Rate versus Maximum Area Declination Rate in Phonation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Titze, Ingo R.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: Maximum flow declination rate (MFDR) in the glottis is known to correlate strongly with vocal intensity in voicing. This declination, or negative slope on the glottal airflow waveform, is in part attributable to the maximum area declination rate (MADR) and in part to the overall inertia of the air column of the vocal tract (lungs to…

  8. Theoretical Analysis of Maximum Flow Declination Rate versus Maximum Area Declination Rate in Phonation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Titze, Ingo R.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: Maximum flow declination rate (MFDR) in the glottis is known to correlate strongly with vocal intensity in voicing. This declination, or negative slope on the glottal airflow waveform, is in part attributable to the maximum area declination rate (MADR) and in part to the overall inertia of the air column of the vocal tract (lungs to…

  9. Coin hoards speak of population declines in Ancient Rome

    PubMed Central

    Turchin, Peter; Scheidel, Walter

    2009-01-01

    In times of violence, people tend to hide their valuables, which are later recovered unless the owners had been killed or driven away. Thus, the temporal distribution of unrecovered coin hoards is an excellent proxy for the intensity of internal warfare. We use this relationship to resolve a long-standing controversy in Roman history. Depending on who was counted in the early Imperial censuses (adult males or the entire citizenry including women and minors), the Roman citizen population of Italy either declined, or more than doubled, during the first century BCE. This period was characterized by a series of civil wars, and historical evidence indicates that high levels of sociopolitical instability are associated with demographic contractions. We fitted a simple model quantifying the effect of instability (proxied by hoard frequency) on population dynamics to the data before 100 BCE. The model predicts declining population after 100 BCE. This suggests that the vigorous growth scenario is highly implausible. PMID:19805043

  10. Coin hoards speak of population declines in Ancient Rome.

    PubMed

    Turchin, Peter; Scheidel, Walter

    2009-10-13

    In times of violence, people tend to hide their valuables, which are later recovered unless the owners had been killed or driven away. Thus, the temporal distribution of unrecovered coin hoards is an excellent proxy for the intensity of internal warfare. We use this relationship to resolve a long-standing controversy in Roman history. Depending on who was counted in the early Imperial censuses (adult males or the entire citizenry including women and minors), the Roman citizen population of Italy either declined, or more than doubled, during the first century BCE. This period was characterized by a series of civil wars, and historical evidence indicates that high levels of sociopolitical instability are associated with demographic contractions. We fitted a simple model quantifying the effect of instability (proxied by hoard frequency) on population dynamics to the data before 100 BCE. The model predicts declining population after 100 BCE. This suggests that the vigorous growth scenario is highly implausible.

  11. Asymmetric disassembly and robustness in declining networks

    PubMed Central

    Saavedra, Serguei; Reed-Tsochas, Felix; Uzzi, Brian

    2008-01-01

    Mechanisms that enable declining networks to avert structural collapse and performance degradation are not well understood. This knowledge gap reflects a shortage of data on declining networks and an emphasis on models of network growth. Analyzing >700,000 transactions between firms in the New York garment industry over 19 years, we tracked this network's decline and measured how its topology and global performance evolved. We find that favoring asymmetric (disassortative) links is key to preserving the topology and functionality of the declining network. Based on our findings, we tested a model of network decline that combines an asymmetric disassembly process for contraction with a preferential attachment process for regrowth. Our simulation results indicate that the model can explain robustness under decline even if the total population of nodes contracts by more than an order of magnitude, in line with our observations for the empirical network. These findings suggest that disassembly mechanisms are not simply assembly mechanisms in reverse and that our model is relevant to understanding the process of decline and collapse in a broad range of biological, technological, and financial networks. PMID:18936489

  12. Asymmetric disassembly and robustness in declining networks.

    PubMed

    Saavedra, Serguei; Reed-Tsochas, Felix; Uzzi, Brian

    2008-10-28

    Mechanisms that enable declining networks to avert structural collapse and performance degradation are not well understood. This knowledge gap reflects a shortage of data on declining networks and an emphasis on models of network growth. Analyzing >700,000 transactions between firms in the New York garment industry over 19 years, we tracked this network's decline and measured how its topology and global performance evolved. We find that favoring asymmetric (disassortative) links is key to preserving the topology and functionality of the declining network. Based on our findings, we tested a model of network decline that combines an asymmetric disassembly process for contraction with a preferential attachment process for regrowth. Our simulation results indicate that the model can explain robustness under decline even if the total population of nodes contracts by more than an order of magnitude, in line with our observations for the empirical network. These findings suggest that disassembly mechanisms are not simply assembly mechanisms in reverse and that our model is relevant to understanding the process of decline and collapse in a broad range of biological, technological, and financial networks.

  13. Maryland striped bass: recruitment declining below replacement

    SciTech Connect

    Goodyear, C.P.; Cohen, J.E.; Christensen, S.W.

    1985-01-01

    A mathematical technique was developed to examined interrelationships among first-year survival rates, adult fecundity, and adult survival of striped bass Morone saxatilis based on indices of year-class strength. Application of this technique to striped bass in Maryland waters of the Chesapeake Bay provided evidence for reduced survival in the life cycle. If adult fecundity and survival have remained constant, first-year survival declined significantly from 1969 to 1983, and averaged less than that needed for replacement for the last 10 years. Treatment of the individual spawning grounds separately indicated that the downward trend in survival for the pooled data was the result of declines in the upper bay and, to a lesser extent, in the Choptank River. Alternatively, if first-year survival and adult fecundity were assumed to have remained constant, an annual decline of about 1.9% in adult survival would have been required to produce the observed trend in the pooled year-class data. This would be consistent with increased fishing mortality and implies declining recruitment because of declining stock size. Continuing declines in first-year or adult survival would eliminate the Maryland striped bass stock and the fishery it supports. Conversely, an increase in adult survival could offset of the unknown factor or factors responsible for the apparent decline in first-year survival. 25 references, 1 figure, 1 table.

  14. Why did maternal mortality decline in Matlab?

    PubMed

    Maine, D; Akalin, M Z; Chakraborty, J; de Francisco, A; Strong, M

    1996-01-01

    In 1991, an article on the Maternity Care Program in Matlab, Bangladesh, reported a substantial decline in direct obstetric deaths in the intervention area, but not in the control area. The decline was attributed primarily to the posting of midwives at the village level. In this article, data are presented from the same period and area on a variety of intermediate events. They indicate that the decline in deaths was probably due to the combined efforts of community midwives and the physicians at the Matlab maternity clinic. Their ability to refer patients to higher levels of care was important. The data further indicate that the decline in deaths depended upon the functioning of the government hospital in Chandpur, where cesarean sections and blood transfusions were available. Midwives might also have made a special contribution by providing early termination of pregnancy, which is legal in Bangladesh.

  15. Understanding Amphibian Declines Through Geographic Approaches

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallant, Alisa

    2006-01-01

    Growing concern over worldwide amphibian declines warrants serious examination. Amphibians are important to the proper functioning of ecosystems and provide many direct benefits to humans in the form of pest and disease control, pharmaceutical compounds, and even food. Amphibians have permeable skin and rely on both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems during different seasons and stages of their lives. Their association with these ecosystems renders them likely to serve as sensitive indicators of environmental change. While much research on amphibian declines has centered on mysterious causes, or on causes that directly affect humans (global warming, chemical pollution, ultraviolet-B radiation), most declines are the result of habitat loss and habitat alteration. Improving our ability to characterize, model, and monitor the interactions between environmental variables and amphibian habitats is key to addressing amphibian conservation. In 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) initiated the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) to address issues surrounding amphibian declines.

  16. Atrial Fibrillation, Cognitive Decline And Dementia

    PubMed Central

    Alonso, Alvaro; Arenas de Larriva, Antonio P.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia. Growing evidence supports a role for AF as a risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia. In this review, we summarize epidemiologic observations linking AF with cognitive outcomes, describe potential mechanisms, and explore the impact of AF treatments on cognitive decline and dementia. Community-based, observational studies show a consistent higher rate of cognitive decline and risk of dementia in persons with AF. These associations are partly due to the increased risk of clinical stroke in AF, but other mechanisms, including incidence of silent cerebral infarcts, microbleeds, and cerebral hypoperfusion, are likely additional contributors. Adequate oral anticoagulation and improved management of the overall cardiovascular risk profile in persons with AF offer the promise of reducing the impact of AF on cognitive decline and dementia. PMID:27547248

  17. Global pollinator declines: trends, impacts and drivers.

    PubMed

    Potts, Simon G; Biesmeijer, Jacobus C; Kremen, Claire; Neumann, Peter; Schweiger, Oliver; Kunin, William E

    2010-06-01

    Pollinators are a key component of global biodiversity, providing vital ecosystem services to crops and wild plants. There is clear evidence of recent declines in both wild and domesticated pollinators, and parallel declines in the plants that rely upon them. Here we describe the nature and extent of reported declines, and review the potential drivers of pollinator loss, including habitat loss and fragmentation, agrochemicals, pathogens, alien species, climate change and the interactions between them. Pollinator declines can result in loss of pollination services which have important negative ecological and economic impacts that could significantly affect the maintenance of wild plant diversity, wider ecosystem stability, crop production, food security and human welfare. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Decline and conservation of bumble bees.

    PubMed

    Goulson, D; Lye, G C; Darvill, B

    2008-01-01

    Declines in bumble bee species in the past 60 years are well documented in Europe, where they are driven primarily by habitat loss and declines in floral abundance and diversity resulting from agricultural intensification. Impacts of habitat degradation and fragmentation are likely to be compounded by the social nature of bumble bees and their largely monogamous breeding system, which renders their effective population size low. Hence, populations are susceptible to stochastic extinction events and inbreeding. In North America, catastrophic declines of some bumble bee species since the 1990s are probably attributable to the accidental introduction of a nonnative parasite from Europe, a result of global trade in domesticated bumble bee colonies used for pollination of greenhouse crops. Given the importance of bumble bees as pollinators of crops and wildflowers, steps must be taken to prevent further declines. Suggested measures include tight regulation of commercial bumble bee use and targeted use of environmentally comparable schemes to enhance floristic diversity in agricultural landscapes.

  19. Oak Decline in Missouri: History Revisited

    Treesearch

    Jay R. Law; Ross Melick; Charly Studyvin; James R. Steinman

    2004-01-01

    In the 1980s, following extreme winters in the late 1970s and severe droughts in 1976, 1980, and 1983, dead and dying scarlet and black oaks were found on 185,000 acres of the Mark Twain National Forest. That decline event was linked to environmental stresses (Law and Gott 1987). Severe oak decline is now affecting an estimated 500,000 acres on the Mark Twain. High-...

  20. Problems Associated with Declining National Oil Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, J. S.

    2009-12-01

    Forecasts of peak oil production have focussed on the global impacts of declining production. Meanwhile, national oil production has declined in 20 countries, leading to local problems that receive little comment outside of the effected regions. Two problems deserve wider recognition: declining state revenues and fuel substitution. Most oil producing countries with large reserves adopted licensing practices that provide significant revenues to the host governments such that oil revenues generate from 40 to 80 percent of total government funds. Typically these governments allocate a fraction of this revenue to their state oil companies, utilizing the remainder for other activities. As oil revenues decline with falling production, host governments face a dilemma: either to increase state oil company budgets in order to stem the decline, or to starve the state oil company while maintaining other government programs. The declining oil revenues in these states can significantly reduce the government's ability to address important national issues. Mexico, Indonesia, and Yemen illustrate this situation in its early phases. Fuel substitution occurs whenever one fuel proves less expensive than another. The substitution of coal for wood in the eighteenth century and oil for coal in the twentieth century are classic examples. China and India appear to be at peak oil production, while their economies generate increasing demand for energy. Both countries are substituting coal and natural gas for oil with attendant environmental impacts. Coal-to-liquids projects are proposed in in both China, which will require significant water resources if they are executed. These examples suggest that forecasting the impact of peak oil at a regional level requires more than an assessment of proven-probable-possible reserves and a forecast of supply-demand scenarios. A range of government responses to declining oil income scenarios must also be considered, together with scenarios describing

  1. A Decline in Solar Cycle Strength

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapman, G. A.; de Toma, G.; Cookson, A.

    2013-12-01

    The strength of solar activity appears to be in decline over the past three solar cycles. The decline is seen in sunspot area, facular/network area and the sunspot number. In addition, cycle 24 has been unusual in that many, if not most, of the bipolar sunspot groups have had only a leader spot with no follower spot. This research was partially supported by grants from NSF and NASA. Corrected spot area from CFDT1 at the San Fernando Observatory

  2. Local bumble bee decline linked to recovery of honey bees, drought effects on floral resources.

    PubMed

    Thomson, Diane M

    2016-10-01

    Time series of abundances are critical for understanding how abiotic factors and species interactions affect population dynamics, but are rarely linked with experiments and also scarce for bee pollinators. This gap is important given concerns about declines in some bee species. I monitored honey bee (Apis mellifera) and bumble bee (Bombus spp.) foragers in coastal California from 1999, when feral A. mellifera populations were low due to Varroa destructor, until 2014. Apis mellifera increased substantially, except between 2006 and 2011, coinciding with declines in managed populations. Increases in A. mellifera strongly correlated with declines in Bombus and reduced diet overlap between them, suggesting resource competition consistent with past experimental results. Lower Bombus numbers also correlated with diminished floral resources. Declines in floral abundances were associated with drought and reduced spring rainfall. These results illustrate how competition with an introduced species may interact with climate to drive local decline of native pollinators. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  3. Ideal men: masculinity and decline in seventeenth-century Spain.

    PubMed

    Lehfeldt, Elizabeth A

    2008-01-01

    This article examines how the experience and critique of their country's decline led Spaniards to craft a distinct discourse of masculinity in the seventeenth century. As they self-consciously examined Spain's crisis and offered political and economic solutions, these same writers also offered a scathing critique of standards of masculinity. Using the figure of the ideal nobleman as a case study, the article examines how moralists, arbitristas, and hagiographers constructed a dynamic code of manhood linked to questions of productivity, male chastity, and military performance. Further, it argues that this discourse was ultimately nostalgic and failed to adapt itself to the circumstances of the seventeenth century.

  4. Evidence of forest declines in the eastern United States

    SciTech Connect

    Bruck, R.I.

    1996-11-01

    The evidence of forest declines in the eastern US has accumulated principally over the past 15 years. Several researchers have reported significant decreases in annual ring width growth of several tree species in nonurbanized parts of the eastern US. The identification of existing or abnormal growth trends is difficult because long-term data on natural variations in these ecosystems are lacking. Influences of previous natural and human disturbances are often ignored or difficult to determine. Tree ring data collected at any point in time represent a biased account of forest dynamics because only the survivors are present, and therefore past episodes of lethal stress are inherently underrepresented.

  5. Continuous probabilistic approach to species dynamics in Hubbell's zero-sum local community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babak, Petro

    2006-08-01

    In this paper a continuous probabilistic approach formulated using Kolmogorov-Fokker-Planck forward and backward models is applied to Hubbell’s zero-sum neutral theory for species dynamics in local community. Using this technique the probability density of species abundance, distribution of the first passage time to extinction or fixation and probability of extinction are defined. The resulting values for the distribution of the first passage time to extinction are verified by the simulation study of Hubbell’s zero-sum neutral model for the local community. Based on the sensitivity analysis for the continuous probabilistic models, the realistic classification of local communities subject to their diversity and species dynamics is proposed with respect to the immigration probability, the species metacommunity relative abundance, and the size of local community.

  6. Whole-body angular momentum in incline and decline walking.

    PubMed

    Silverman, Anne K; Wilken, Jason M; Sinitski, Emily H; Neptune, Richard R

    2012-04-05

    Angular momentum is highly regulated over the gait cycle and is important for maintaining dynamic stability and control of movement. However, little is known regarding how angular momentum is regulated on irregular surfaces, such as slopes, when the risk of falling is higher. This study examined the three-dimensional whole-body angular momentum patterns of 30 healthy subjects walking over a range of incline and decline angles. The range of angular momentum was either similar or reduced on decline surfaces and increased on incline surfaces relative to level ground, with the greatest differences occurring in the frontal and sagittal planes. These results suggest that angular momentum is more tightly controlled during decline walking when the risk of falling is greater. In the frontal plane, the range of angular momentum was strongly correlated with the peak hip and knee abduction moments in early stance. In the transverse plane, the strongest correlation occurred with the knee external rotation peak in late stance. In the sagittal plane, all external moment peaks were correlated with the range of angular momentum. The peak ankle plantarflexion, knee flexion and hip extension moments were also strongly correlated with the sagittal-plane angular momentum. These results highlight how able-bodied subjects control angular momentum differently on sloped surfaces relative to level walking and provide a baseline for comparison with pathological populations that are more susceptible to falling.

  7. Periodontitis and Cognitive Decline in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Ide, Mark; Harris, Marina; Stevens, Annette; Sussams, Rebecca; Hopkins, Viv; Culliford, David; Fuller, James; Ibbett, Paul; Raybould, Rachel; Thomas, Rhodri; Puenter, Ursula; Teeling, Jessica; Perry, V Hugh; Holmes, Clive

    2016-01-01

    Periodontitis is common in the elderly and may become more common in Alzheimer's disease because of a reduced ability to take care of oral hygiene as the disease progresses. Elevated antibodies to periodontal bacteria are associated with an increased systemic pro-inflammatory state. Elsewhere raised serum pro-inflammatory cytokines have been associated with an increased rate of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. We hypothesized that periodontitis would be associated with increased dementia severity and a more rapid cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. We aimed to determine if periodontitis in Alzheimer's disease is associated with both increased dementia severity and cognitive decline, and an increased systemic pro inflammatory state. In a six month observational cohort study 60 community dwelling participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease were cognitively assessed and a blood sample taken for systemic inflammatory markers. Dental health was assessed by a dental hygienist, blind to cognitive outcomes. All assessments were repeated at six months. The presence of periodontitis at baseline was not related to baseline cognitive state but was associated with a six fold increase in the rate of cognitive decline as assessed by the ADAS-cog over a six month follow up period. Periodontitis at baseline was associated with a relative increase in the pro-inflammatory state over the six month follow up period. Our data showed that periodontitis is associated with an increase in cognitive decline in Alzheimer's Disease, independent to baseline cognitive state, which may be mediated through effects on systemic inflammation.

  8. Global phytoplankton decline over the past century.

    PubMed

    Boyce, Daniel G; Lewis, Marlon R; Worm, Boris

    2010-07-29

    In the oceans, ubiquitous microscopic phototrophs (phytoplankton) account for approximately half the production of organic matter on Earth. Analyses of satellite-derived phytoplankton concentration (available since 1979) have suggested decadal-scale fluctuations linked to climate forcing, but the length of this record is insufficient to resolve longer-term trends. Here we combine available ocean transparency measurements and in situ chlorophyll observations to estimate the time dependence of phytoplankton biomass at local, regional and global scales since 1899. We observe declines in eight out of ten ocean regions, and estimate a global rate of decline of approximately 1% of the global median per year. Our analyses further reveal interannual to decadal phytoplankton fluctuations superimposed on long-term trends. These fluctuations are strongly correlated with basin-scale climate indices, whereas long-term declining trends are related to increasing sea surface temperatures. We conclude that global phytoplankton concentration has declined over the past century; this decline will need to be considered in future studies of marine ecosystems, geochemical cycling, ocean circulation and fisheries.

  9. Predicting how populations decline to extinction

    PubMed Central

    Collen, Ben; McRae, Louise; Deinet, Stefanie; De Palma, Adriana; Carranza, Tharsila; Cooper, Natalie; Loh, Jonathan; Baillie, Jonathan E. M.

    2011-01-01

    Global species extinction typically represents the endpoint in a long sequence of population declines and local extinctions. In comparative studies of extinction risk of contemporary mammalian species, there appear to be some universal traits that may predispose taxa to an elevated risk of extinction. In local population-level studies, there are limited insights into the process of population decline and extinction. Moreover, there is still little appreciation of how local processes scale up to global patterns. Advancing the understanding of factors which predispose populations to rapid declines will benefit proactive conservation and may allow us to target at-risk populations as well as at-risk species. Here, we take mammalian population trend data from the largest repository of population abundance trends, and combine it with the PanTHERIA database on mammal traits to answer the question: what factors can be used to predict decline in mammalian abundance? We find in general that environmental variables are better determinants of cross-species population-level decline than intrinsic biological traits. For effective conservation, we must not only describe which species are at risk and why, but also prescribe ways to counteract this. PMID:21807738

  10. Biomarkers of cognitive decline in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chin-Hsien; Wu, Ruey-Meei

    2015-05-01

    Cognitive impairment is a frequent and devastating non-motor symptom of Parkinson's disease (PD). Impaired cognition has a major impact on either quality of life or mortality in patients with PD. Notably, the rate of cognitive decline and pattern of early cognitive deficits in PD are highly variable between individuals. Given that the underlying mechanisms of cognitive decline or dementia associated with PD remain unclear, there is currently no mechanism-based treatment available. Identification of biological markers, including neuroimaging, biofluids and common genetic variants, that account for the heterogeneity of PD related cognitive decline could provide important insights into the pathological processes that underlie cognitive impairment in PD. These combined biomarker approaches will enable early diagnosis and provide indicators of cognitive progression in PD patients. This review summarizes recent advances in the development of biomarkers for cognitive impairments in PD.

  11. THE HEALTH EFFECTS OF ECONOMIC DECLINE

    PubMed Central

    Catalano, Ralph; Goldman-Mellor, Sidra; Saxton, Katherine; Margerison-Zilko, Claire; Subbaraman, Meenakshi; LeWinn, Kaja; Anderson, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    The recent recession and lingering high unemployment will likely lead to a burst of research studying the health effects of economic decline. We aim to inform that work by summarizing empirical research concerned with those effects. We separate the studies into groups defined by questions asked, mechanisms invoked, and outcomes studied. We conclude that although much research shows that undesirable job and financial experiences increase the risk of psychological and behavioral disorder, many other suspected associations remain poorly studied or unsupported. The intuition that mortality increases when the economy declines, for example, appears wrong. We note that the research informs public health programming by identifying risk factors, such as job loss, made more frequent by economic decline. The promise that the research would identify health costs and benefits of economic policy choices, however, remains unfulfilled and will likely remain so without stronger theory and greater methodological agreement. PMID:21054175

  12. Light Sensor System Measuring Declination and Orientation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tambo, Toyokazu; Miyamoto, Yuuji; Sakashita, Shuuhei; Shibata, Miki

    We have proposed and investigated the properties of five-photodiode light sensor (5PD light sensor) which is able to search and track the solar light in the sky. In the present paper, we have focused the estimation about the orientation and declination of the 5PD light sensor regarding the plane of the top photodiode. Those are defined by the rotation of the azimuth and the declination of the elevation at the rotated angle. The rotation and the declination are originated to compare the solar directions between the calculation of solar orbit and the measurement using tracking function of the 5PD light sensor. The derivation is shown, and the estimation is performed on a typical example.

  13. Flowering plants under global pollinator decline.

    PubMed

    Thomann, Michel; Imbert, Eric; Devaux, Céline; Cheptou, Pierre-Olivier

    2013-07-01

    There is now compelling evidence of a reduction of pollinator richness and density at a global scale. In this opinion article, we argue that such pollinator decline intensifies pollen limitation and reduces plant reproductive success, threatening natural populations of extinction. We use genetic architecture and selection experiments on floral traits and evaluate the potential for plant reproductive strategies to adapt rapidly to new pollination environments. We propose that plant reproductive strategies could adapt to the current pollinator decline by decreasing or increasing their reliance to pollinators, for example, increasing autonomous selfing or reinforcing interactions with pollinators. We further discuss if and how adaptation of plant reproductive strategies can buffer the demographic consequences of pollinator decline, and possibly rescue plant populations from extinction. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Rate of decline in progressive supranuclear palsy.

    PubMed

    Litvan, Irene; Kong, Maiying

    2014-04-01

    The rate of patients' decline is critical to properly design trials of disease-modifying agents. We prospectively quantified the progression of 27 progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) patients for at least 1 year to determine the rate of decline of motor, ocular-motor, neuropsychological, and neuropsychiatric features. PSP patients meeting the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and the Society for Progressive Supranuclear Palsy criteria were assessed using the PSP Rating Scale (PSP-RS) and modified UPDRS. The Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Frontal Assessment Battery assessed cognitive decline, the Neuropsychiatric Inventory assessed behavior, and the modified Schwab and England scale and UPDRS ADL assessed activities of daily living (ADL). The rate of change of each score was calculated as 1-year worsening score. Power and sample sizes were estimated. PSP patients showed a significant yearly decline in total and subtotal scores of the PSP-RS and UPDRS, as well as in MMSE, and UPDRS and Schwab and England ADL scores. In addition, they had significant deterioration of individual item scores reflecting major aspects of the disease (i.e., ocular-motor). The rate of decline reflected in the UPDRS mirrored that of the PSP-RS. The worsening of the ADL score was positively correlated with the PSP-RS progression of falls and ocular-motor subitem scores and with executive dysfunction. PSP patients showed a significant yearly decline in motor, ocular-motor, and ADL functions. Our findings suggest that using more-advanced technology to measure ocular-motor, postural instability, and ADL will be helpful in planning future therapeutic trials.

  15. Declining childhood and adolescent cancer mortality.

    PubMed

    Smith, Malcolm A; Altekruse, Sean F; Adamson, Peter C; Reaman, Gregory H; Seibel, Nita L

    2014-08-15

    To evaluate whether progress continues in identifying more effective treatments for children and adolescents with cancer, the authors examined both overall and disease-specific childhood cancer mortality rates for the United States, focusing on data from 2000 to 2010. Age-adjusted US mortality trends from 1975 to 2010 were estimated using joinpoint regression analysis. Analyses of annual percentage change (APC) were performed on the same diagnostic groupings for the period restricted to 2000 through 2010 for groupings ages <20 years, <15 years, and 15 to 19 years. After a plateau in mortality rates during 1998 to 2002 (APC, 0.3%), the annual decline in childhood cancer mortality from 2002 to 2010 (APC, -2.4%) was similar to that observed from 1975 to 1998 (APC, -2.7%). Statistically significant declines in mortality rates from 2000 to 2010 were noted for acute lymphoblastic leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma, neuroblastoma, central nervous system cancers, and gonadal cancers. From 2000 to 2010, the rates of decline in mortality for the group ages 15 to 19 years generally were equal to or greater than the rates of decline for the group ages birth to 14 years. Improvements in treatment since 1975 resulted >45,000 cancer deaths averted through 2010. Cancer mortality for both children and adolescents declined from 2000 to 2010, with significant declines observed for multiple cancer types. However, greater than 1900 cancer deaths still occur each year among children and adolescents in the United States, and many survivors experience long-term effects that limit their quality of life. Continued research directed toward identifying more effective treatments that produce fewer long-term sequelae is critical to address these remaining challenges. Published 2014. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  16. Decline in semicircular canal and otolith function with age.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Yuri; Zuniga, Maria Geraldine; Davalos-Bichara, Marcela; Schubert, Michael C; Walston, Jeremy D; Hughes, Jennifer; Carey, John P

    2012-07-01

    To characterize the physiologic nature of the vestibular dysfunction that occurs with the normative aging process. Cross-sectional study. Tertiary care academic medical center. Fifty individuals age 70 years and above. Head thrust dynamic visual acuity testing and cervical and ocular vestibular-evoked myogenic potential (VEMP) testing. Semicircular canal function measured by head thrust dynamic visual acuity testing in each of the 3 semicircular canal planes, and saccular and utricular function measured by cervical VEMP and ocular VEMP testing, respectively. We observed significant declines in semicircular canal function in each of the canal planes as well as otolith function associated with aging. We found that individuals with impaired horizontal and superior semicircular canal function also were likely to have concomitant deficits in utricular but not saccular function. Overall, we noted that the prevalence of semicircular canal dysfunction was highest followed by saccular then utricular impairment, although we did observe individuals with isolated otolith deficits. These data suggest an overall decline in semicircular canal as well as otolith function associated with aging, although the magnitude of impairment was greater for the semicircular canals than the otoliths in this elderly population. A better understanding of the specific vestibular deficits that occur with aging can inform the development of rational screening, vestibular rehabilitation, and fall risk reduction strategies in older individuals.

  17. Phylogenetic escalation and decline of plant defense strategies

    PubMed Central

    Agrawal, Anurag A.; Fishbein, Mark

    2008-01-01

    As the basal resource in most food webs, plants have evolved myriad strategies to battle consumption by herbivores. Over the past 50 years, plant defense theories have been formulated to explain the remarkable variation in abundance, distribution, and diversity of secondary chemistry and other defensive traits. For example, classic theories of enemy-driven evolutionary dynamics have hypothesized that defensive traits escalate through the diversification process. Despite the fact that macroevolutionary patterns are an explicit part of defense theories, phylogenetic analyses have not been previously attempted to disentangle specific predictions concerning (i) investment in resistance traits, (ii) recovery after damage, and (iii) plant growth rate. We constructed a molecular phylogeny of 38 species of milkweed and tested four major predictions of defense theory using maximum-likelihood methods. We did not find support for the growth-rate hypothesis. Our key finding was a pattern of phyletic decline in the three most potent resistance traits (cardenolides, latex, and trichomes) and an escalation of regrowth ability. Our neontological approach complements more common paleontological approaches to discover directional trends in the evolution of life and points to the importance of natural enemies in the macroevolution of species. The finding of macroevolutionary escalating regowth ability and declining resistance provides a window into the ongoing coevolutionary dynamics between plants and herbivores and suggests a revision of classic plant defense theory. Where plants are primarily consumed by specialist herbivores, regrowth (or tolerance) may be favored over resistance traits during the diversification process. PMID:18645183

  18. Disease management strategy for macadamia quick decline

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Trees infected with Macadamia Quick Decline (MQD) exhibit excessive sap bleeding from the trunk, frass from ambrosia beetle feeding, orange fruiting bodies of the fungus Nectria rugulosa and yellowing and browning of the leaves within the tree canopy. MQD threatens commercial and residential product...

  19. Management of Programs with Declining Enrollments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1980

    The time to begin caring about declining enrollments in community college programs is before the program is started. Program planning should take into account why industry is demanding a given program "right now," avoid developing crash programs, and obtain and utilize all of the information possible including survey data, Labor Department…

  20. Exercise Rates Often Decline After Cancer Diagnosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_163189.html Exercise Rates Often Decline After Cancer Diagnosis But researchers say physical activity can improve recovery ... percent said they had increased their exercise since diagnosis. ASCO guidelines urge doctors to encourage cancer patients to participate in a moderate level of ...

  1. Careerism and the Decline of Regional Geography.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fairweather, Malcolm; Rumney, Thomas

    The aim of this paper is to offer possible explanations for the declining interest in regional geography. One of the major contributing factors is employment potential. Employment is perceived as being relatively limited for persons defining their interests as "regional" within geography. Students, therefore, do not enroll in regional geography…

  2. Declining national park visitation: An economic analysis

    Treesearch

    Thomas H. Stevens; Thomas A. More; Marla. Markowski-Lindsay

    2014-01-01

    Visitation to the major nature-based national parks has been declining. This paper specifies an econometric model that estimates the relative impact of consumer incomes, travel costs, entry fees and other factors on per capita attendance from 1993 to 2010. Results suggest that entrance fees have had a statistically significant but small impact on per capita attendance...

  3. The "Decline" of Private Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levy, Daniel C.

    2013-01-01

    No topic in private higher education study has attracted as great attention globally as has growth. This is appropriate as private growth has soared to nearly a third of the world's total higher education enrolment. But while private growth continues to be the dominant trend, important declines in private shares have emerged. These must be…

  4. Managing Decline and Staffing Standards for Quality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Costanzo, Matthew W.

    School boards, administrators, and representatives of the community should develop long-range plans that not only consider the present state of schools but attempt to project 10 years hence. Demographic changes in communities indicate that managing decline will require a willingness to pare expenditures and an attempt to win back citizens'…

  5. Black Rural Land Decline in the South

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGee, Leo; Boone, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Notes that it is widely accepted that millions of blacks who migrated from the South contributed significantly to the decline of black rural land ownership. However, the less than altruistic behavior patterns of land officials has also contributed to the loss of rural land by blacks. (Author/AM)

  6. The Decline of Direct Newspaper Competition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosse, James N.

    1980-01-01

    Describes the decline of direct newspaper competition in terms of the loss of effective newspaper market segmentation. Examines the following influences on market segmentation: shift in advertising demand, advertiser preferences for differentiated audiences, shift in subscriber demand, growth of alternative media, increasing production costs, and…

  7. Cholesterol and late-life cognitive decline.

    PubMed

    van Vliet, Peter

    2012-01-01

    High cholesterol levels are a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, but their role in dementia and cognitive decline is less clear. This review highlights current knowledge on the role of cholesterol in late-life cognitive function, cognitive decline, and dementia. When measured in midlife, high cholesterol levels associate with an increased risk of late-life dementia and cognitive decline. However, when measured in late-life, high cholesterol levels show no association with cognitive function, or even show an inverse relation. Although statin treatment has been shown to associate with a lower risk of dementia and cognitive decline in observational studies, randomized controlled trials show no beneficial effect of statin treatment on late-life cognitive function. Lowering cholesterol levels may impair brain function, since cholesterol is essential for synapse formation and maturation and plays an important role in the regulation of signal transduction through its function as a component of the cell membrane. However, membrane cholesterol also plays a role in the formation and aggregation of amyloid-β. Factors that influence cholesterol metabolism, such as dietary intake, are shown to play a role in late-life cognitive function and the risk of dementia. In conclusion, cholesterol associates with late-life cognitive function, but the association is strongly age-dependent. There is no evidence that treatment with statins in late-life has a beneficial effect on cognitive function.

  8. Complexity versus certainty in understanding species’ declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sundstrom, Shana M.; Allen, Craig R.

    2014-01-01

    Traditional approaches to predict species declines (e.g. government processes or IUCN Red Lists), may be too simplistic and may therefore misguide management and conservation. Using complex systems approaches that account for scale-specific patterns and processes have the potential to overcome these limitations.

  9. Prevalence of Hunger Declines in Rural Households.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nord, Mark; Winicki, F. Joshua

    2000-01-01

    The prevalence of hunger in rural households declined slightly from 1995 to 1998, and food insecurity rates stayed constant. Food insecurity was almost three times as prevalent among rural Blacks as among rural Whites. For rural Hispanics, the rate was about twice that of Whites. Food insecurity was higher in single-parent families than in any…

  10. Must Declining Enrollment Mean Closing Schools?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fredrickson, John H.

    Effective long-range planning by school districts is an imperative in dealing with declining enrollments. School districts should (1) evaluate present programs in light of current statutory regulations and educational trends and innovations; (2) appraise the structural qualities of existing school facilities; (3) conduct communitywide surveys to…

  11. Exploring the Global Decline of Music Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aróstegui, José Luis

    2016-01-01

    This article seeks to explain the disjuncture between the decline of music education in schools and the importance music has in popular youth culture and in creativity within the new knowledge economy. The data discussed in this article have been derived from analyses of major documents on curriculum reform as well as e-mail responses from music…

  12. Sudden aspen decline in southwest Colorado

    Treesearch

    J. J. Worrall; R. A. Mask; T. Eager; L. Egeland; W. D. Shepperd

    2008-01-01

    Sudden aspen decline (SAD) has increased rapidly in recent years, approaching 350,000 acres in Colorado in 2007, or 13% of the aspen cover type. We investigated the severity, site/stand factors and causes associated with SAD in southwest Colorado. First, we documented landscape (GIS-DEM analyses) and stand factors (stand exams). There was a strong inverse relationship...

  13. Black Rural Land Decline in the South

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGee, Leo; Boone, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Notes that it is widely accepted that millions of blacks who migrated from the South contributed significantly to the decline of black rural land ownership. However, the less than altruistic behavior patterns of land officials has also contributed to the loss of rural land by blacks. (Author/AM)

  14. The Decline of Direct Newspaper Competition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosse, James N.

    1980-01-01

    Describes the decline of direct newspaper competition in terms of the loss of effective newspaper market segmentation. Examines the following influences on market segmentation: shift in advertising demand, advertiser preferences for differentiated audiences, shift in subscriber demand, growth of alternative media, increasing production costs, and…

  15. Exploring the Global Decline of Music Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aróstegui, José Luis

    2016-01-01

    This article seeks to explain the disjuncture between the decline of music education in schools and the importance music has in popular youth culture and in creativity within the new knowledge economy. The data discussed in this article have been derived from analyses of major documents on curriculum reform as well as e-mail responses from music…

  16. Student Writing: Strategies to Reverse Ongoing Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carter, Michael J.; Harper, Heather

    2013-01-01

    This article reports on the decline in writing ability skills in secondary and higher education students. The author discusses changes that have affected student writing skills over the recent decades and offers recommendations for improving these skills, such as: implementing intensive freshman writing courses; adjusting existing course…

  17. Predicting Succession under Conditions of Enrollment Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berger, Michael A.

    Three possible explanations for superintendent succession focus on poor administrative performance, district response strategies, and the politics of the chief executive's relationship with the school board. To analyze succession in the context of declining enrollment, a case study survey was conducted of 56 school districts whose peak enrollment…

  18. Negotiation in the Face of Declining Enrollment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shaw, Ira W.

    As a result of declining enrollment and unionization of teachers, administrators are losing their roles as educational leaders. They must be innovative in order to reassert their prerogatives over decisions on such issues as class size, transfer limitations, and the selection of new employees and to promote a better educational climate in the…

  19. Growth and Decline Processes in Organizations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freeman, John; Hannan, Michael T.

    1975-01-01

    Formulates and tests a model that distinguishes effects of growth and decline among organizational components. Analysis of changes in sizes of personnel categories in 805 California school districts supports the model. (Available from Executive Office, American Sociological Association, 1722 N Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036, $15.00 per year…

  20. Violent Youth Crime May Be Declining.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    USA Today, 1979

    1979-01-01

    Reports the findings of Frank Zimring, director of the University of Chicago's Center for Criminal Justice, that the rate of four types of serious youth crime (homicide, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault) began to level off around 1970 and may now be declining. (SJL)

  1. Political Factors in Public School Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peltzman, Sam

    1993-01-01

    Teacher unionization, centralization of financial control, desegregation, and weakening in business involvement are among the political factors that have contributed to the decline in public school performance between 1965 and 1980. Research into these factors confirms the importance of political influences on schooling and suggests that…

  2. The Decline of Literature: A Public Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Albalawi, Mohammed

    2015-01-01

    After centuries of dominance, literature has not been in a robust health for the last few decades. Several scholars have addressed the decline of literature in a number of books and articles attributing it to institutional and economic reasons. However, a major factor has not been taken into account. It is the larger audience who receives and…

  3. Declining NDT Participation: Causes and Cures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ludlum, M. P.

    A study investigated the reason for the decline in participation in NDT (National Debate Tournament) debate. An anonymous poll of forensic programs was conducted to encourage a frank and open description of the issues surrounding the problem. One hundred thirty colleges and universities in America (out of 354) responded to a questionnaire. The…

  4. MIND diet slows cognitive decline with aging.

    PubMed

    Morris, Martha Clare; Tangney, Christy C; Wang, Yamin; Sacks, Frank M; Barnes, Lisa L; Bennett, David A; Aggarwal, Neelum T

    2015-09-01

    The Mediterranean and dash diets have been shown to slow cognitive decline; however, neither diet is specific to the nutrition literature on dementia prevention. We devised the Mediterranean-Dietary Approach to Systolic Hypertension (DASH) diet intervention for neurodegenerative delay (MIND) diet score that specifically captures dietary components shown to be neuroprotective and related it to change in cognition over an average 4.7 years among 960 participants of the Memory and Aging Project. In adjusted mixed models, the MIND score was positively associated with slower decline in global cognitive score (β = 0.0092; P < .0001) and with each of five cognitive domains. The difference in decline rates for being in the top tertile of MIND diet scores versus the lowest was equivalent to being 7.5 years younger in age. The study findings suggest that the MIND diet substantially slows cognitive decline with age. Replication of these findings in a dietary intervention trial would be required to verify its relevance to brain health. Copyright © 2015 The Alzheimer's Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Declining Enrollments: Staffing for the Eighties.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Delbert H.

    School districts that survive declining enrollments will be the ones who recognize that the problem exists and build their programs and plans to meet the problem. It is necessary to know community demography and develop farsighted, actuarily sound projections of the effects. As money is basic to the problem, it is necessary to know the fiscal…

  6. Migratory diversity predicts population declines in birds.

    PubMed

    Gilroy, James J; Gill, Jennifer A; Butchart, Stuart H M; Jones, Victoria R; Franco, Aldina M A

    2016-03-01

    Declines in migratory species are a pressing concern worldwide, but the mechanisms underpinning these declines are not fully understood. We hypothesised that species with greater within-population variability in migratory movements and destinations, here termed 'migratory diversity', might be more resilient to environmental change. To test this, we related map-based metrics of migratory diversity to recent population trends for 340 European breeding birds. Species that occupy larger non-breeding ranges relative to breeding, a characteristic we term 'migratory dispersion', were less likely to be declining than those with more restricted non-breeding ranges. Species with partial migration strategies (i.e. overlapping breeding and non-breeding ranges) were also less likely to be declining than full migrants or full residents, an effect that was independent of migration distance. Recent rates of advancement in Europe-wide spring arrival date were greater for partial migrants than full migrants, suggesting that migratory diversity may also help facilitate species responses to climate change. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Aspen decline on the Coconino National Forest

    Treesearch

    Mary Lou Fairweather; Brian W. Geils; Mike Manthei

    2008-01-01

    An accelerated decline of aspen occurred across the Coconino National Forest, in northern Arizona, following a frost event in June 1999, and a long-term drought that included an extremely dry and warm period from 2001 through 2002, and bouts of defoliation by the western tent caterpillar in 2004, 2005, and 2007. From 2003 to 2007, we monitored aspen mortality and...

  8. Maternal hemoglobin decline following 'uneventful' cesarean delivery.

    PubMed

    Ashwal, Eran; Wertheimer, Avital; Aviram, Amir; Orbach-Zinger, Sharon; Yogev, Yariv; Hiersch, Liran

    2016-09-01

    To assess hemoglobin (Hb) decline following elective and non-elective uneventful cesarean section (CS). A retrospective cohort study of all women with singleton pregnancy who underwent uneventful CS defined as clinical estimation of intra-operative bleeding < 1000 ml. Hemoglobin decline (pre- and post-CS levels difference) of women with non-elective CS (during labor/delivery process) were compared to those who underwent elective CS (no labor). Cases complicated by placenta previa/abruption were excluded. Overall 2767 women underwent uneventful CS, of them, 954 (34.5%) were non-elective and 1813 (65.5%) were elective. Hemoglobin decline was higher in the non-elective group (1.5 ± 1.3 versus 1.0 ± 1.2 g/dL, p < 0.001). This was also observed in the nulliparous patients as well as in those with previous single CS subgroups. The rate of Hb decline ≥3 g/dL and the rate of post-CS Hb < 7 g/dL were higher in the non-elective group (8.9% versus 3.1%, p < 0.001 and 2.3% versus 0.4%, p = 0.001, respectively). On multivariable analysis, non-elective CS was found to be significantly associated with Hb decline of  ≥3 g/dl after surgery (aOR = 2.10, 95% CI 1.36-3.23, p = 0.001) and need for blood products transfusion (aOR = 2.24, 95% CI 1.04-4.83, p = 0.03). Non-elective CS was associated with an increased risk of Hb decline and blood product transfusion even in an apparent uneventful operation.

  9. UN projections assume fertility decline, mortality increase.

    PubMed

    Haub, C

    1998-12-01

    This article summarizes the latest findings from the UN Population Division's 1998 review of World Population Estimates and Projections. The revisions reflect lower future population size and faster rates of fertility and mortality decline. The medium variant of population projection for 2050 indicates 8.9 billion, which is 458 million lower than projected in 1996 and 924 million lower than projected in 1994. The changes are due to changes in developing countries. Africa's changes accounted for over 50% of the change. The UN medium projection assumes that the desire for fewer children and effective contraceptive practice will continue and that the availability of family planning services will increase. The revisions are also attributed to the widespread prevalence of AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa and greater chances for lower fertility in developing countries. AIDS mortality may decrease average life expectancy in 29 African countries by 7 years. The UN medium projection assumes a decline in fertility from 2.7 children/woman during 1995-2000 to 2.0 children/woman by 2050. The UN high variant is 10.7 billion by 2050; the low variant is 7.3 billion. It is concluded that efforts of national governments and international agencies have contributed to increased access to reproductive health services and subsequent fertility decline. Future declines will depend on accessibility issues. Despite declines, world population is still growing by 78 million annually. Even countries such as Botswana, with 25% of the population infected with HIV/AIDS, will double in size by 2050.

  10. Dexterous Manipulation Is Poorer at Older Ages and Is Dissociated From Decline of Hand Strength

    PubMed Central

    Dayanidhi, Sudarshan

    2014-01-01

    Background. The ability to dynamically control fingertip force vector magnitude and direction is critical for dexterous manipulation. We quantified the dynamic control of fingertip forces to examine how dexterous manipulation declines with age. Methods. The strength–dexterity (SD) test measures fingertip forces during compression of a slender spring prone to instability and buckling. The greatest sustained compression (designed to be under 3 N), and force dynamics therein, have been shown to be simple and quick measures of dynamic dexterous manipulation ability. We measured pinch strength and strength–dexterity test in a cross-sectional population of 98 people from 18 to 89 years of age. Results. Dexterous manipulation ability is poorer at older ages, beginning in middle age (p < .001), with greater decline past 65 years of age. Fingertip force dynamics during spring compression and stabilization show a deterioration of neuromuscular control with age. Importantly, this novel detection of decline in dynamic manipulation ability is not correlated with, and thus cannot be entirely explained by, the known decline in pinch strength. We also measured standardized tests of dexterity in participants older than 45, and discuss how the strength–dexterity test uniquely captures features of sensorimotor capabilities for dexterous manipulation in this adult population. Conclusions. Starting in middle age, changes in the functional interactions among sensory, motor, and neural capabilities result in measurably poorer dynamic dexterous manipulation. This deterioration of neuromuscular control motivates and enables future studies to understand the physiological bases for this functional decline so critical to activities of daily living and quality of life. PMID:24610868

  11. Dexterous manipulation is poorer at older ages and is dissociated from decline of hand strength.

    PubMed

    Dayanidhi, Sudarshan; Valero-Cuevas, Francisco J

    2014-09-01

    The ability to dynamically control fingertip force vector magnitude and direction is critical for dexterous manipulation. We quantified the dynamic control of fingertip forces to examine how dexterous manipulation declines with age. The strength-dexterity (SD) test measures fingertip forces during compression of a slender spring prone to instability and buckling. The greatest sustained compression (designed to be under 3 N), and force dynamics therein, have been shown to be simple and quick measures of dynamic dexterous manipulation ability. We measured pinch strength and strength-dexterity test in a cross-sectional population of 98 people from 18 to 89 years of age. Dexterous manipulation ability is poorer at older ages, beginning in middle age (p < .001), with greater decline past 65 years of age. Fingertip force dynamics during spring compression and stabilization show a deterioration of neuromuscular control with age. Importantly, this novel detection of decline in dynamic manipulation ability is not correlated with, and thus cannot be entirely explained by, the known decline in pinch strength. We also measured standardized tests of dexterity in participants older than 45, and discuss how the strength-dexterity test uniquely captures features of sensorimotor capabilities for dexterous manipulation in this adult population. Starting in middle age, changes in the functional interactions among sensory, motor, and neural capabilities result in measurably poorer dynamic dexterous manipulation. This deterioration of neuromuscular control motivates and enables future studies to understand the physiological bases for this functional decline so critical to activities of daily living and quality of life. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Declining scaup populations: issues, hypotheses, and research needs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Austin, J.E.; Afton, A.D.; Anderson, M.G.; Clark, R.G.; Custer, Christine M.; Lawrence, J.S.; Pollard, J.B.; Ringelman, J.K.

    2000-01-01

    The population estimate for greater (Aythya marila) and lesser (Aythya affinis) scaup (combined) has declined dramatically since the early 1980s to record lows in 1998. The 1998 estimate of 3.47 million scaup is far below the goal of 6.3 million set in the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP), causing concern among biologists and hunters. We summarize issuesof concern, hypotheses for factors contributing to the population decline, and research and management needs recommended by participants of the Scaup Workshop, held in September 1999. We believe that contaminants, lower female survival, and reduced recruitment due to changes in food resources or breedingground habitats are primary factors contributing to the decline. These factors are not mutually exclusive but likely interact across seasons. Workshop participants identified seven action items. We need to further delineate where declines in breeding populations have occurred, with a primary focus on the western Canadian boreal forest, where declines appear to be most pronounced. Productivity in various areas and habitats throughout the breeding range needs to be assessed by conducting retrospective analyses of existing data and by intensive field studies at broad and local scales. Annual and seasonal survival rates need to be determined in order to assess the role of harvest or natural mortality. Effects of contaminants on reproduction, female body condition, and behavior must be investigated. Use, distribution, and role of food resources relative to body condition and reproduction need to be examined to better understand seasonal dynamics of nutrient reserves and the role in reproductive success. Affiliations among breeding, migration, and wintering areas must be assessed in order to understand differential exposure to harvest or contaminants, and differential reproductive success and recruitment. Biologists and agencies need to gather and improve information needed to manage greater and lesser

  13. Walking ability to predict future cognitive decline in old adults: A scoping review.

    PubMed

    Kikkert, Lisette H J; Vuillerme, Nicolas; van Campen, Jos P; Hortobágyi, Tibor; Lamoth, Claudine J

    2016-05-01

    Early identification of individuals at risk for cognitive decline may facilitate the selection of those who benefit most from interventions. Current models predicting cognitive decline include neuropsychological and/or biological markers. Additional markers based on walking ability might improve accuracy and specificity of these models because motor and cognitive functions share neuroanatomical structures and psychological processes. We reviewed the relationship between walking ability at one point of (mid) life and cognitive decline at follow-up. A systematic literature search identified 20 longitudinal studies. The average follow-up time was 4.5 years. Gait speed quantified walking ability in most studies (n=18). Additional gait measures (n=4) were step frequency, variability and step-length. Despite methodological weaknesses, results revealed that gait slowing (0.68-1.1 m/sec) preceded cognitive decline and the presence of dementia syndromes (maximal odds and hazard ratios of 10.4 and 11.1, respectively). The results indicate that measures of walking ability could serve as additional markers to predict cognitive decline. However, gait speed alone might lack specificity. We recommend gait analysis, including dynamic gait parameters, in clinical evaluations of patients with suspected cognitive decline. Future studies should focus on examining the specificity and accuracy of various gait characteristics to predict future cognitive decline.

  14. Rapid population decline in migratory shorebirds relying on Yellow Sea tidal mudflats as stopover sites

    PubMed Central

    Studds, Colin E.; Kendall, Bruce E.; Murray, Nicholas J.; Wilson, Howard B.; Rogers, Danny I.; Clemens, Robert S.; Gosbell, Ken; Hassell, Chris J.; Jessop, Rosalind; Melville, David S.; Milton, David A.; Minton, Clive D. T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Riegen, Adrian C.; Straw, Phil; Woehler, Eric J.; Fuller, Richard A.

    2017-01-01

    Migratory animals are threatened by human-induced global change. However, little is known about how stopover habitat, essential for refuelling during migration, affects the population dynamics of migratory species. Using 20 years of continent-wide citizen science data, we assess population trends of ten shorebird taxa that refuel on Yellow Sea tidal mudflats, a threatened ecosystem that has shrunk by >65% in recent decades. Seven of the taxa declined at rates of up to 8% per year. Taxa with the greatest reliance on the Yellow Sea as a stopover site showed the greatest declines, whereas those that stop primarily in other regions had slowly declining or stable populations. Decline rate was unaffected by shared evolutionary history among taxa and was not predicted by migration distance, breeding range size, non-breeding location, generation time or body size. These results suggest that changes in stopover habitat can severely limit migratory populations. PMID:28406155

  15. Declining fertility and economic well-being: do education and health ride to the rescue?

    PubMed Central

    Prettner, Klaus; Bloom, David E.; Strulik, Holger

    2015-01-01

    It is widely argued that declining fertility slows the pace of economic growth in industrialized countries through its negative effect on labor supply. There are, however, theoretical arguments suggesting that the effect of falling fertility on effective labor supply can be offset by associated behavioral changes. We formalize these arguments by setting forth a dynamic consumer optimization model that incorporates endogenous fertility as well as endogenous education and health investments. The model shows that a fertility decline induces higher education and health investments that are able to compensate for declining fertility under certain circumstances. We assess the theoretical implications by investigating panel data for 118 countries over the period 1980 to 2005 and show that behavioral changes partly mitigate the negative impact of declining fertility on effective labor supply. PMID:26388677

  16. Declining fertility and economic well-being: do education and health ride to the rescue?

    PubMed

    Prettner, Klaus; Bloom, David E; Strulik, Holger

    2013-06-01

    It is widely argued that declining fertility slows the pace of economic growth in industrialized countries through its negative effect on labor supply. There are, however, theoretical arguments suggesting that the effect of falling fertility on effective labor supply can be offset by associated behavioral changes. We formalize these arguments by setting forth a dynamic consumer optimization model that incorporates endogenous fertility as well as endogenous education and health investments. The model shows that a fertility decline induces higher education and health investments that are able to compensate for declining fertility under certain circumstances. We assess the theoretical implications by investigating panel data for 118 countries over the period 1980 to 2005 and show that behavioral changes partly mitigate the negative impact of declining fertility on effective labor supply.

  17. Is Canada's sex ratio in decline?

    PubMed Central

    Dodds, L; Armson, B A

    1997-01-01

    In this issue (see pages 37 to 41) Dr. Bruce B. Allan and associates report a small but statistically significant decrease--of about 0.2%--in the proportion of male live births in Canada over the period 1970-90. In this editorial, factors that have been reported in the literature to influence sex ratio are examined within a Canadian context. The authors suggest that although the reasons for the apparent decline in the sex ratio in Canada are unclear, the increasing use of ovulation induction may be a contributing factor. Data from the Nova Scotia Atlee Perinatal Database are discussed with a view to explaining the trend observed in Atlantic Canada, but no obvious explanation emerges. The authors argue that when the period of observation is extended no overall change in the sex ratio is apparent. This would suggest a tendency toward stabilization rather than decline. PMID:9006564

  18. Decline of the lunar core dynamo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikoo, Sonia M.; Weiss, Benjamin P.; Cassata, William S.; Shuster, David L.; Gattacceca, Jérôme; Lima, Eduardo A.; Suavet, Clément; Nimmo, Francis; Fuller, Michael D.

    2014-10-01

    Recent analyses of Apollo samples have demonstrated that a core dynamo existed on the Moon between at least 4.25 and 3.56 billion years ago (Ga) with surface field intensities reaching ˜70 μT. However, it is unknown when the Moon's magnetic field declined. Determining the temporal evolution of the dynamo is important because it constrains secular changes in power at the lunar core-mantle boundary and, by implication, the Moon's thermal and orbital evolution and the field generation mechanism. Here we present paleomagnetic data from several younger mare basalts which demonstrate that the surface magnetic field had declined precipitously to <˜4 μT by 3.19 Ga. It is currently unclear whether such a rapid decrease in field strength reflects either the cessation of the dynamo during this period or its persistence beyond 3.19 Ga in a drastically weakened state.

  19. The rise (and decline?) of biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Kinch, Michael S

    2014-11-01

    Since the 1970s, biotechnology has been a key innovator in drug development. An analysis of FDA-approved therapeutics demonstrates pharmaceutical companies outpace biotechs in terms of new approvals but biotechnology companies are now responsible for earlier-stage activities (patents, INDs or clinical development). The number of biotechnology organizations that contributed to an FDA approval began declining in the 2000s and is at a level not seen since the 1980s. Whereas early biotechnology companies had a decade from first approval until acquisition, the average acquisition of a biotechnology company now occurs months before their first FDA approval. The number of hybrid organizations that arise when pharmaceutical companies acquire biotechnology is likewise declining, raising questions about the sustainability of biotechnology. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. The neuroinflammatory response of postoperative cognitive decline

    PubMed Central

    Vacas, Susana; Degos, Vincent; Feng, Xiaomei; Maze, Mervyn

    2013-01-01

    Background Aseptic surgical trauma provokes a homeostatic neuroinflammatory response to promote healing and protect the organism from further injury. When this response is dysregulated, harmful consequences can follow, including postoperative cognitive decline. Sources of data We performed a comprehensive search on PubMed related to postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). Areas of agreement Although the precise pathogenic mechanisms for POCD remain unclear, certain risk factors are known. Areas of controversy The mechanisms that lead to exaggerated and persistent neuroinflammation and the best way to counteract it are still unknown. Areas for developing research It is imperative that we identify the underlying processes that increase the risk of cognitive decline in elderly surgical patients. In this review we explore non-resolution of inflammation as an underlying cause of developing exaggerated and persistent POCD. If interventions can be developed to promote resolution of neuroinflammation, the patient's postoperative recovery will be enhanced and long-term consequences can be prevented. PMID:23558082

  1. The decline of North American freshwater fishes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walsh, Stephen J.; Jelks, Howard L.; Burkhead, Noel M.

    2009-01-01

    North America has a broad array of freshwater ecosystems because of the continent's complex geography and geological history. Within a multitude of habitats—that include streams, large rivers, natural lakes, springs, and wetlands—rich assemblages of fishes reside, representing diverse taxonomic groups with unique ecological requirements. They face an unprecedented conservation crisis.1 In the last few decades, the proportion of inland fishes of North America, which are considered imperiled or extinct, increased from 20 to 40%.2 Although extinctions have occurred, many species and populations are declining in range size and abundance. The fish biota of the continent as a whole remains diverse; however, we can take action to stem any further declines.

  2. The Decline in Maternal Mortality in Sweden

    PubMed Central

    Högberg, Ulf

    2004-01-01

    The maternal mortality rate in Sweden in the early 20th century was one third that in the United States. This rate was recognized by American visitors as an achievement of Swedish maternity care, in which highly competent midwives attend home deliveries. The 19th century decline in maternal mortality was largely caused by improvements in obstetric care, but was also helped along by the national health strategy of giving midwives and doctors complementary roles in maternity care, as well as equal involvement in setting public health policy. The 20th century decline in maternal mortality, seen in all Western countries, was made possible by the emergence of modern medicine. However, the contribution of the mobilization of human resources should not be underestimated, nor should key developments in public health policy. PMID:15284032

  3. Analysis of production decline in geothermal reservoirs

    SciTech Connect

    Zais, Elliot J.; Bodvarsson, Gunnar

    1980-09-01

    The major objectives of the Decline Curve project were to: (1) test the decline analysis methods used in the petroleum industry on geothermal production data; (2) examine and/or develop new analysis methods; and (3) develop a standard operating procedure for analyzing geothermal production data. Various analysis methods have long been available but they have not been tested on geothermal data because of the lack of publicly available data. The recent release to publication of substantial data sets from Wairakei, New Zealand, Cerro Prieto, Mexico and The Geysers, USA has made this study possible. Geothermal reservoirs are quite different from petroleum reservoirs in many ways so the analysis methods must be tested using geothermal data.

  4. Ecology: the proximate cause of frog declines?

    PubMed

    Di Rosa, Ines; Simoncelli, Francesca; Fagotti, Anna; Pascolini, Rita

    2007-05-31

    Pounds et al. argue that global warming contributes to amphibian declines by encouraging outbreaks of the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Although our findings agree with the climate-linked epidemic hypothesis, this pathogen is probably not the only proximate factor in such cases: in the Trasimeno Lake area of Umbria in central Italy, for example, the water frog Rana lessonae first declined in the late 1990s, yet chytridiomycosis was not observed until 2003 (refs 5, 6). Here we show that the chytrid was common there throughout 1999-2002, in a previously unknown form that did not cause disease. We therefore think that the focus by Pounds et al. on a single pathogen is hard to justify because the host-parasite ecology is at present so poorly understood.

  5. Almagest Declinations: Timocharis, Aristyllus, and Hipparcus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimmer, Peter C.; Brandt, J. C.; Jones, P. B.

    2013-01-01

    Declinations in the Almagest provide an opportunity to determine the observational precision of the ancient observers and their epochs. The basic data are the original observations (O) and the declinations calculated (C) by precessing modern positions and including refraction. The plots of (O) - (C) can be analyzed using several different approaches. All of the original positions appear to be valid except Timocharis’s value for Arcturus. Consistent results for the precisions and epochs, respectively, are: Timocharis--8.1 arc min, near 296BC; Aristyllus--5.3 arc min, near 258BC; and Hipparcus--6.8 arc min, near 130BC. See the papers by Pannekoek (1955), Maeyama (1984), Rawlins (manuscript, c. 1983), and our earlier (Brandt, Zimmer, and Jones, 2011) report for the development of this subject. The precisions in the range 5-8 arc min are remarkable and the dates are compatible with historical evidence.

  6. Emerging infectious diseases and amphibian population declines.

    PubMed Central

    Daszak, P.; Berger, L.; Cunningham, A. A.; Hyatt, A. D.; Green, D. E.; Speare, R.

    1999-01-01

    We review recent research on the pathology, ecology, and biogeography of two emerging infectious wildlife diseases, chytridiomycosis and ranaviral disease, in the context of host-parasite population biology. We examine the role of these diseases in the global decline of amphibian populations and propose hypotheses for the origins and impact of these panzootics. Finally, we discuss emerging infectious diseases as a global threat to wildlife populations. PMID:10603206

  7. Reliability of indicators of decline in abundance.

    PubMed

    Porszt, Erin J; Peterman, Randall M; Dulvy, Nicholas K; Cooper, Andrew B; Irvine, James R

    2012-10-01

    Although there are many indicators of endangerment (i.e., whether populations or species meet criteria that justify conservation action), their reliability has rarely been tested. Such indicators may fail to identify that a population or species meets criteria for conservation action (false negative) or may incorrectly show that such criteria have been met (false positive). To quantify the rate of both types of error for 20 commonly used indicators of declining abundance (threat indicators), we used receiver operating characteristic curves derived from historical (1938-2007) data for 18 sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) populations in the Fraser River, British Columbia, Canada. We retrospectively determined each population's yearly status (reflected by change in abundance over time) on the basis of each indicator. We then compared that population's status in a given year with the status in subsequent years (determined by the magnitude of decline in abundance across those years). For each sockeye population, we calculated how often each indicator of past status matched subsequent status. No single threat indicator provided error-free estimates of status, but indicators that reflected the extent (i.e., magnitude) of past decline in abundance (through comparison of current abundance with some historical baseline abundance) tended to better reflect status in subsequent years than the rate of decline over the previous 3 generations (a widely used indicator). We recommend that when possible, the reliability of various threat indicators be evaluated with empirical analyses before such indicators are used to determine the need for conservation action. These indicators should include estimates from the entire data set to take into account a historical baseline. ©2012 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. The declining interest in an academic career.

    PubMed

    Roach, Michael; Sauermann, Henry

    2017-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that science & engineering PhD students lose interest in an academic career over the course of graduate training. It is not clear, however, whether this decline reflects students being discouraged from pursuing an academic career by the challenges of obtaining a faculty job or whether it reflects more fundamental changes in students' career goals for reasons other than the academic labor market. We examine this question using a longitudinal survey that follows a cohort of PhD students from 39 U.S. research universities over the course of graduate training to document changes in career preferences and to explore potential drivers of such changes. We report two main results. First, although the vast majority of students start the PhD interested in an academic research career, over time 55% of all students remain interested while 25% lose interest entirely. In addition, 15% of all students were never interested in an academic career during their PhD program, while 5% become more interested. Thus, the declining interest in an academic career is not a general phenomenon across all PhD students, but rather reflects a divergence between those students who remain highly interested in an academic career and other students who are no longer interested in one. Second, we show that the decline we observe is not driven by expectations of academic job availability, nor by related factors such as postdoctoral requirements or the availability of research funding. Instead, the decline appears partly due to the misalignment between students' changing preferences for specific job attributes on the one hand, and the nature of the academic research career itself on the other. Changes in students' perceptions of their own research ability also play a role, while publications do not. We discuss implications for scientific labor markets, PhD career development programs, and science policy.

  9. The declining interest in an academic career

    PubMed Central

    Sauermann, Henry

    2017-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that science & engineering PhD students lose interest in an academic career over the course of graduate training. It is not clear, however, whether this decline reflects students being discouraged from pursuing an academic career by the challenges of obtaining a faculty job or whether it reflects more fundamental changes in students’ career goals for reasons other than the academic labor market. We examine this question using a longitudinal survey that follows a cohort of PhD students from 39 U.S. research universities over the course of graduate training to document changes in career preferences and to explore potential drivers of such changes. We report two main results. First, although the vast majority of students start the PhD interested in an academic research career, over time 55% of all students remain interested while 25% lose interest entirely. In addition, 15% of all students were never interested in an academic career during their PhD program, while 5% become more interested. Thus, the declining interest in an academic career is not a general phenomenon across all PhD students, but rather reflects a divergence between those students who remain highly interested in an academic career and other students who are no longer interested in one. Second, we show that the decline we observe is not driven by expectations of academic job availability, nor by related factors such as postdoctoral requirements or the availability of research funding. Instead, the decline appears partly due to the misalignment between students’ changing preferences for specific job attributes on the one hand, and the nature of the academic research career itself on the other. Changes in students’ perceptions of their own research ability also play a role, while publications do not. We discuss implications for scientific labor markets, PhD career development programs, and science policy. PMID:28922403

  10. Large Decadal Decline of the Arctic Multiyear Ice Cover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2011-01-01

    The perennial ice area was drastically reduced to 38% of its climatological average in 2007 but recovered somewhat in 2008, 2009 and 2010 with the areas being 10%, 24%, and 11% higher than in 2007, respectively. However, the trends in the extent and area remain strongly negative at -12.2% and -13.5 %/decade, respectively. The thick component of the perennial ice, called multiyear ice, as detected by satellite data in the winters of 1979 to 2011 was studied and results reveal that the multiyear ice extent and area are declining at an even more rapid rate of -15.1% and -17.2 % per decade, respectively, with record low value in 2008 followed by higher values in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Such high rate in the decline of the thick component of the Arctic ice cover means a reduction in average ice thickness and an even more vulnerable perennial ice cover. The decline of the multiyear ice area from 2007 to 2008 was not as strong as that of the perennial ice area from 2006 to 2007 suggesting a strong role of second year ice melt in the latter. The sea ice cover is shown to be strongly correlated with surface temperature which is increasing at about three times global average in the Arctic but appears weakly correlated with the AO which controls the dynamics of the region. An 8 to 9-year cycle is apparent in the multiyear ice record which could explain in part the slight recovery in the last three years.

  11. Widespread decline of Congo rainforest greenness in the past decade.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Liming; Tian, Yuhong; Myneni, Ranga B; Ciais, Philippe; Saatchi, Sassan; Liu, Yi Y; Piao, Shilong; Chen, Haishan; Vermote, Eric F; Song, Conghe; Hwang, Taehee

    2014-05-01

    Tropical forests are global epicentres of biodiversity and important modulators of climate change, and are mainly constrained by rainfall patterns. The severe short-term droughts that occurred recently in Amazonia have drawn attention to the vulnerability of tropical forests to climatic disturbances. The central African rainforests, the second-largest on Earth, have experienced a long-term drying trend whose impacts on vegetation dynamics remain mostly unknown because in situ observations are very limited. The Congolese forest, with its drier conditions and higher percentage of semi-evergreen trees, may be more tolerant to short-term rainfall reduction than are wetter tropical forests, but for a long-term drought there may be critical thresholds of water availability below which higher-biomass, closed-canopy forests transition to more open, lower-biomass forests. Here we present observational evidence for a widespread decline in forest greenness over the past decade based on analyses of satellite data (optical, thermal, microwave and gravity) from several independent sensors over the Congo basin. This decline in vegetation greenness, particularly in the northern Congolese forest, is generally consistent with decreases in rainfall, terrestrial water storage, water content in aboveground woody and leaf biomass, and the canopy backscatter anomaly caused by changes in structure and moisture in upper forest layers. It is also consistent with increases in photosynthetically active radiation and land surface temperature. These multiple lines of evidence indicate that this large-scale vegetation browning, or loss of photosynthetic capacity, may be partially attributable to the long-term drying trend. Our results suggest that a continued gradual decline of photosynthetic capacity and moisture content driven by the persistent drying trend could alter the composition and structure of the Congolese forest to favour the spread of drought-tolerant species.

  12. Widespread decline of Congo rainforest greenness in the past decade

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Liming; Tian, Yuhong; Myneni, Ranga B.; Ciais, Philippe; Saatchi, Sassan; Liu, Yi Y.; Piao, Shilong; Chen, Haishan; Vermote, Eric F.; Song, Conghe; Hwang, Taehee

    2014-05-01

    Tropical forests are global epicentres of biodiversity and important modulators of climate change, and are mainly constrained by rainfall patterns. The severe short-term droughts that occurred recently in Amazonia have drawn attention to the vulnerability of tropical forests to climatic disturbances. The central African rainforests, the second-largest on Earth, have experienced a long-term drying trend whose impacts on vegetation dynamics remain mostly unknown because in situ observations are very limited. The Congolese forest, with its drier conditions and higher percentage of semi-evergreen trees, may be more tolerant to short-term rainfall reduction than are wetter tropical forests, but for a long-term drought there may be critical thresholds of water availability below which higher-biomass, closed-canopy forests transition to more open, lower-biomass forests. Here we present observational evidence for a widespread decline in forest greenness over the past decade based on analyses of satellite data (optical, thermal, microwave and gravity) from several independent sensors over the Congo basin. This decline in vegetation greenness, particularly in the northern Congolese forest, is generally consistent with decreases in rainfall, terrestrial water storage, water content in aboveground woody and leaf biomass, and the canopy backscatter anomaly caused by changes in structure and moisture in upper forest layers. It is also consistent with increases in photosynthetically active radiation and land surface temperature. These multiple lines of evidence indicate that this large-scale vegetation browning, or loss of photosynthetic capacity, may be partially attributable to the long-term drying trend. Our results suggest that a continued gradual decline of photosynthetic capacity and moisture content driven by the persistent drying trend could alter the composition and structure of the Congolese forest to favour the spread of drought-tolerant species.

  13. Ulysses orbit determination at high declinations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcelrath, Timothy P.; Lewis, George D.

    1995-01-01

    The trajectory of the Ulysses spacecraft caused its geocentric declination to exceed 60 deg South for over two months during the Fall of 1994, permitting continuous tracking from a single site. During this time, spacecraft operations constraints allowed only Doppler tracking data to be collected, and imposed a high radial acceleration uncertainty on the orbit determination process. The unusual aspects of this situation have motivated a re-examination of the Hamilton-Melbourne results, which have been used before to estimate the information content of Doppler tracking for trajectories closer to the ecliptic. The addition of an acceleration term to this equation is found to significantly increase the declination uncertainty for symmetric passes. In addition, a simple means is described to transform the symmetric results when the tracking pass is non-symmetric. The analytical results are then compared against numerical studies of this tracking geometry and found to be in good agreement for the angular uncertainties. The results of this analysis are applicable to the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission and to any other missions with high declination trajectories, as well as to missions using short tracking passes and/or one-way Doppler data.

  14. Vaccine allocation in a declining epidemic

    PubMed Central

    Goldstein, E.; Wallinga, J.; Lipsitch, M.

    2012-01-01

    Sizeable quantities of 2009 pandemic influenza A/H1N1 (H1N1pdm) vaccine in the USA became available at the end of 2009 when the autumn wave of the epidemic was declining. At that point, risk factors for H1N1-related mortality for some of the high-risk groups, particularly adults with underlying health conditions, could be estimated. Although those high-risk groups are natural candidates for being in the top priority tier for vaccine allocation, another candidate group is school-aged children through their role as vectors for transmission affecting the whole community. In this paper, we investigate the question of prioritization for vaccine allocation in a declining epidemic between two groups—a group with a high risk of mortality versus a ‘core’ group with a relatively low risk of mortality but fuelling transmission in the community. We show that epidemic data can be used, under certain assumptions on future decline, seasonality and vaccine efficacy in different population groups, to give a criterion when initial prioritization of a population group with a sufficiently high risk of epidemic-associated mortality is advisable over the policy of prioritizing the core group. PMID:22772378

  15. Detection and Prevention of Cognitive Decline.

    PubMed

    Small, Gary W

    2016-12-01

    Current diagnostic and treatment strategies for cognitive decline can help patients maintain cognitive ability and higher levels of function longer. Despite advances in detection and early treatment strategies, many patients do not receive proper assessments and available therapies. A systematic assessment strategy will increase the likelihood of an accurate diagnosis, which can facilitate pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic treatment plans that can have a meaningful impact on prognosis. Available data support the integration of healthy lifestyle strategies in the treatment plan to help to stabilize symptoms and potentially delay future cognitive decline. While investigators continue to pursue more effective detection, treatment, and prevention strategies, the scientific data support the use of symptomatic drug treatments and recommendations for healthy lifestyle behaviors to improve quality of life and potentially stave off future cognitive decline. Success of such healthy lifestyle programs involves educating participants on the connection between lifestyle and disease prevention, offering enjoyable exercises that target the patient's skill level, and providing feedback that motivates participants to continue their healthy behaviors so they become habits.

  16. Is human fecundity declining in Western countries?

    PubMed

    te Velde, Egbert; Burdorf, Alex; Nieschlag, Eberhard; Eijkemans, René; Kremer, Jan A M; Roeleveld, Nel; Habbema, Dik

    2010-06-01

    Since Carlsen and co-workers reported in 1992 that sperm counts have decreased during the second half of the last century in Western societies, there has been widespread anxiety about the adverse effects of environmental pollutants on human fecundity. The Carlsen report was followed by several re-analyses of their data set and by many studies on time trends in sperm quality and on secular trends in fecundity. However, the results of these studies were diverse, complex, difficult to interpret and, therefore, less straightforward than the Carlsen report suggested. The claims that population fecundity is declining and that environmental pollutants are involved, can neither be confirmed nor rejected, in our opinion. However, it is of great importance to find out because the possible influence of widespread environmental pollution, which would adversely affect human reproduction, should be a matter of great concern triggering large-scale studies into its causes and possibilities for prevention. The fundamental reason we still do not know whether population fecundity is declining is the lack of an appropriate surveillance system. Is such a system possible? In our opinion, determining total sperm counts (as a measure of male reproductive health) in combination with time to pregnancy (as a measure of couple fecundity) in carefully selected populations is a feasible option for such a monitoring system. If we want to find out whether or not population fecundity will be declining within the following 20-30 years, we must start monitoring now.

  17. Family planning programs and fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Cuca, R

    1980-01-01

    A recently completed World Bank statistical study of family planning in 63 developing countries indicated that countries which experienced a large decline in birth rates between 1960-1977 were more likely to have a family planning program, an official population policy aimed at decreasing the birth rate, and a relatively high level of development than countries which experienced smaller or no decline in birth rates. The 65 countries represented 95% of the population of the developing world. Birth rate declines of 10% or more between 1960-1977 were experienced by: 1) 10 of the 26 countries which had a family planning program and a policy aimed at reducing the birth rate; 2) 6 of the 19 countries which had a family planning program but lacked clearly defined population objectives; and 3) 2 of the 18 countries without any population policy or program. Furthermore, the implementation of a family planning program and the adoption of a population policy were directly related to the development level of the country. This finding suggested that countries need to reach a certain level of development before they have the capacity to develop population programs and policies. When a country is sufficiently advanced to collect population data, awareness of population problems increases and they are more likely to adopt a population policy. In addition, government efficiency increases as development proceeds and governments must have a certain level of efficiency before they can implement effective programs.

  18. Reversal of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Bredesen, Dale E.; Amos, Edwin C.; Canick, Jonathan; Ackerley, Mary; Raji, Cyrus; Fiala, Milan; Ahdidan, Jamila

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease is one of the most significant healthcare problems nationally and globally. Recently, the first description of the reversal of cognitive decline in patients with early Alzheimer's disease or its precursors, MCI (mild cognitive impairment) and SCI (subjective cognitive impairment), was published [1]. The therapeutic approach used was programmatic and personalized rather than monotherapeutic and invariant, and was dubbed metabolic enhancement for neurodegeneration (MEND). Patients who had had to discontinue work were able to return to work, and those struggling at work were able to improve their performance. The patients, their spouses, and their co-workers all reported clear improvements. Here we report the results from quantitative MRI and neuropsychological testing in ten patients with cognitive decline, nine ApoE4+ (five homozygous and four heterozygous) and one ApoE4−, who were treated with the MEND protocol for 5-24 months. The magnitude of the improvement is unprecedented, providing additional objective evidence that this programmatic approach to cognitive decline is highly effective. These results have far-reaching implications for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, MCI, and SCI; for personalized programs that may enhance pharmaceutical efficacy; and for personal identification of ApoE genotype. PMID:27294343

  19. Cognitive decline and the neighborhood environment.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Philippa J; Weuve, Jennifer; Barnes, Lisa; Evans, Denis A; Mendes de Leon, Carlos F

    2015-11-01

    Little research has looked beyond individual factors to consider the influence of the neighborhood environment on cognitive function. A greater density of physical resources (e.g., recreational centers and parks) and institutional resources (e.g., community centers) may buffer cognitive decline by offering opportunities for physical activity and social interaction. Using data from the Chicago Health and Aging Project (1993-2011), a prospective cohort study of 6518 adults of age 65 years or older, we fit a three-level growth curve model to examine the role of individual and neighborhood factors (objectively observed at the block group level) on trajectories of cognitive function (composite of East Boston Memory Test, symbol digit test, and Mini Mental State Examination) in later life. Net of individual factors, residence in a neighborhood with community resources, proximity to public transit, and public spaces in good condition were associated with slower rates of cognitive decline, possibly by increasing opportunities for social and physical activities or access to destinations that facilitate engagement in activities. These results highlight the role of neighborhood environments in buffering cognitive decline among older adults aging in place. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. The decline of smoking in British portraiture

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, N; Thomson, G

    2004-01-01

    Methods: A compact disc produced by the National Portrait Gallery in London, UK, was systematically searched for artworks produced in the years 1950 to 1999. A "smoking portrayal" in an artwork was defined as having a cigarette, cigar or pipe in the mouth or hand of a named individual. Results: Out of 1063 artworks included in the analysis, 53 portrayed smoking by identifiable individuals (5.0%). The rate of portrayal was highest in the 1950s (10%) and 1960s (11%) and then declined sharply thereafter (p value for trend < 0.00001). Smoking virtually disappeared from portraiture in the 1990s (at 0.6%). The median age of the smokers portrayed was significantly higher in the 1970 to 1999 period when compared to the 1950 to 1969 period. Conclusions: The decline of smoking in this collection of portraiture is consistent with the decline in smoking in the UK over these decades, but contrasts with trends for increasing smoking portrayal described elsewhere for film and television. PMID:14985574

  1. Cognitive Decline and the Neighborhood Environment

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Philippa J.; Weuve, Jennifer; Barnes, Lisa; Evans, Denis A.; Mendes de Leon, Carlos F.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Little research has looked beyond individual factors to consider the influence of the neighborhood environment on cognitive function. A greater density of physical resources (e.g., recreational centers and parks) and institutional resources (e.g., community centers) may buffer cognitive decline by offering opportunities for physical activity and social interaction. Methods Using data from the Chicago Health and Aging Project (1993–2011), a prospective cohort study of 6518 adults age 65+, we fit a 3-level growth curve model to examine the role of individual and neighborhood factors (objectively observed at the block group level) on trajectories of cognitive function (composite of East Boston Memory Test, symbol digit test, MMSE) in later life. Results Net of individual factors, residence in a neighborhood with community resources, proximity to public transit, and public spaces in good condition were associated with slower rates of cognitive decline, possibly by increasing opportunities for social and physical activities or access to destinations that facilitate engagement in activities. Conclusions These results highlight the role of neighborhood environments in buffering cognitive decline among older adults aging in place. PMID:26253697

  2. The cultural evolution of fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Colleran, Heidi

    2016-04-19

    Cultural evolutionists have long been interested in the problem of why fertility declines as populations develop. By outlining plausible mechanistic links between individual decision-making, information flow in populations and competition between groups, models of cultural evolution offer a novel and powerful approach for integrating multiple levels of explanation of fertility transitions. However, only a modest number of models have been published. Their assumptions often differ from those in other evolutionary approaches to social behaviour, but their empirical predictions are often similar. Here I offer the first overview of cultural evolutionary research on demographic transition, critically compare it with approaches taken by other evolutionary researchers, identify gaps and overlaps, and highlight parallel debates in demography. I suggest that researchers divide their labour between three distinct phases of fertility decline--the origin, spread and maintenance of low fertility--each of which may be driven by different causal processes, at different scales, requiring different theoretical and empirical tools. A comparative, multi-level and mechanistic framework is essential for elucidating both the evolved aspects of our psychology that govern reproductive decision-making, and the social, ecological and cultural contingencies that precipitate and sustain fertility decline. © 2016 The Authors.

  3. Earliest functional declines in Huntington disease.

    PubMed

    Beglinger, Leigh J; O'Rourke, Justin J F; Wang, Chiachi; Langbehn, Douglas R; Duff, Kevin; Paulsen, Jane S

    2010-07-30

    We examined the gold standard for Huntington disease (HD) functional assessment, the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS), in a group of at-risk participants not yet diagnosed but who later phenoconverted to manifest HD. We also sought to determine which skill domains first weaken and the clinical correlates of declines. Using the UHDRS Total Functional Capacity (TFC) and Functional Assessment Scale (FAS), we examined participants from Huntington Study Group clinics who were not diagnosed at their baseline visit but were diagnosed at a later visit (N=265). Occupational decline was the most common with 65.1% (TFC) and 55.6% (FAS) reporting some loss of ability to engage in their typical work. Inability to manage finances independently (TFC 49.2%, FAS 35.1%) and drive safely (FAS 33.5%) were also found. Functional decline was significantly predicted by motor, cognitive, and depressive symptoms. The UHDRS captured early functional losses in individuals with HD prior to formal diagnosis, however, fruitful areas for expanded assessment of early functional changes are performance at work, ability to manage finances, and driving. These are also important areas for clinical monitoring and treatment planning as up to 65% experienced loss in at least one area prior to diagnosis. Copyright 2010. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  4. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section 167(b...

  5. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section 167(b...

  6. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section 167(b...

  7. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section 167(b...

  8. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section 167(b...

  9. Hyperstability masks declines in bumphead parrotfish ( Bolbometopon muricatum) populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, Richard J.; Almany, Glenn R.; Stevens, Don; Bode, Michael; Pita, John; Peterson, Nate A.; Choat, J. Howard

    2016-09-01

    Bolbometopon muricatum, the largest species of parrotfish, is a functionally important species that is characterised by the formation of aggregations for foraging, reproductive, and sleeping behaviours. Aggregations are restricted to shallow reef habitats, the locations of which are often known to local fishers. Bolbometopon muricatum fisheries are therefore vulnerable to overfishing and are likely to exhibit hyperstability, the maintenance of high catch per unit effort (CPUE) while population abundance declines. In this study, we provide a clear demonstration of hyperstable dynamics in a commercial B. muricatum fishery in Isabel Province, Solomon Islands. Initially, we used participatory mapping to demarcate the Kia fishing grounds into nine zones that had experienced different historic levels of fishing pressure. We then conducted comprehensive underwater visual census (UVC) and CPUE surveys across these zones over a 21-month period in 2012-2013. The individual sites for replicate UVC surveys were selected using a generalised random tessellation stratified variable probability design, while CPUE surveys involved trained provincial fisheries officers and local spearfishers. A comparison of fishery-independent abundance data and fishery-dependent CPUE data indicate extreme hyperstability, with CPUE maintained as B. muricatum abundance declines towards zero. Hyperstability may explain the sudden collapses of many B. muricatum spear fisheries across the Pacific and highlights the limitations of using data-poor fisheries assessment methods to evaluate the status of commercially valuable coral reef fishes that form predicable aggregations.

  10. Decline in semicircular canal and otolith function with age

    PubMed Central

    Agrawal, Yuri; Zuniga, M. Geraldine; Davalos-Bichara, Marcela; Schubert, Michael C.; Walston, Jeremy D.; Hughes, Jennifer; Carey, John P.

    2012-01-01

    Objective To characterize the physiologic nature of the vestibular dysfunction that occurs with the normative aging process. Study design Cross-sectional study. Setting Tertiary care academic medical center. Patients Fifty individuals age 70 and above. Interventions Head thrust dynamic visual acuity testing (htDVA) and cervical and ocular vestibular-evoked myogenic potential (VEMP) testing. Main Outcome Measures Semicircular canal function measured by htDVA in each of the three semicircular canal planes, and saccular and utricular function measured by cVEMP and oVEMP testing, respectively. Results We observed significant declines in semicircular canal function in each of the canal planes as well as otolith function associated with aging. We found that individuals with impaired horizontal and superior semicircular canal function were likely to also have concomitant deficits in utricular but not saccular function. Overall, we noted that the prevalence of semicircular canal dysfunction was highest followed by saccular then utricular impairment, although we did observe individuals with isolated otolith deficits. Conclusions These data suggest an overall decline in semicircular canal as well as otolith function associated with aging, although the magnitude of impairment was greater for the semicircular canals than the otoliths in this elderly population. A better understanding of the specific vestibular deficits that occur with aging can inform the development of rational screening, vestibular rehabilitation and fall risk reduction strategies in older individuals. PMID:22699991

  11. Long-term decline of the Amazon carbon sink.

    PubMed

    Brienen, R J W; Phillips, O L; Feldpausch, T R; Gloor, E; Baker, T R; Lloyd, J; Lopez-Gonzalez, G; Monteagudo-Mendoza, A; Malhi, Y; Lewis, S L; Vásquez Martinez, R; Alexiades, M; Álvarez Dávila, E; Alvarez-Loayza, P; Andrade, A; Aragão, L E O C; Araujo-Murakami, A; Arets, E J M M; Arroyo, L; Aymard C, G A; Bánki, O S; Baraloto, C; Barroso, J; Bonal, D; Boot, R G A; Camargo, J L C; Castilho, C V; Chama, V; Chao, K J; Chave, J; Comiskey, J A; Cornejo Valverde, F; da Costa, L; de Oliveira, E A; Di Fiore, A; Erwin, T L; Fauset, S; Forsthofer, M; Galbraith, D R; Grahame, E S; Groot, N; Hérault, B; Higuchi, N; Honorio Coronado, E N; Keeling, H; Killeen, T J; Laurance, W F; Laurance, S; Licona, J; Magnussen, W E; Marimon, B S; Marimon-Junior, B H; Mendoza, C; Neill, D A; Nogueira, E M; Núñez, P; Pallqui Camacho, N C; Parada, A; Pardo-Molina, G; Peacock, J; Peña-Claros, M; Pickavance, G C; Pitman, N C A; Poorter, L; Prieto, A; Quesada, C A; Ramírez, F; Ramírez-Angulo, H; Restrepo, Z; Roopsind, A; Rudas, A; Salomão, R P; Schwarz, M; Silva, N; Silva-Espejo, J E; Silveira, M; Stropp, J; Talbot, J; ter Steege, H; Teran-Aguilar, J; Terborgh, J; Thomas-Caesar, R; Toledo, M; Torello-Raventos, M; Umetsu, R K; van der Heijden, G M F; van der Hout, P; Guimarães Vieira, I C; Vieira, S A; Vilanova, E; Vos, V A; Zagt, R J

    2015-03-19

    Atmospheric carbon dioxide records indicate that the land surface has acted as a strong global carbon sink over recent decades, with a substantial fraction of this sink probably located in the tropics, particularly in the Amazon. Nevertheless, it is unclear how the terrestrial carbon sink will evolve as climate and atmospheric composition continue to change. Here we analyse the historical evolution of the biomass dynamics of the Amazon rainforest over three decades using a distributed network of 321 plots. While this analysis confirms that Amazon forests have acted as a long-term net biomass sink, we find a long-term decreasing trend of carbon accumulation. Rates of net increase in above-ground biomass declined by one-third during the past decade compared to the 1990s. This is a consequence of growth rate increases levelling off recently, while biomass mortality persistently increased throughout, leading to a shortening of carbon residence times. Potential drivers for the mortality increase include greater climate variability, and feedbacks of faster growth on mortality, resulting in shortened tree longevity. The observed decline of the Amazon sink diverges markedly from the recent increase in terrestrial carbon uptake at the global scale, and is contrary to expectations based on models.

  12. X-ray decline and rejuvenation of a recurrent nova

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Itoh, Hiroshi; Hachisu, Izumi

    1990-08-01

    The dynamical evolution and nonequilibrium X-ray emission of recurrent-nova remnants have been investigated by using a spherically symmetric hydrodynamic code. It is assummed that the nova ejecta expand into a wind from a red-giant companion. The wind material is blast shocked, and emits copious X-rays. The blast shock soon breaks out of the wind region which has formed since the previous outburst, and the remnant undergoes nearly unimpeded expansion. The rarefaction and adiabatic cooling of the remnant result in a drastic decline in the X-ray emission. At this stage the recombination exceeds the ionization, and the X-ray spectrum is characterized by strong recombination lines and continua. The blast shock eventually catches up with the relatively slow ejecta of the previous outbursts. The X-ray emission may then be rejuvenated in both luminosity and spectral shape. Observations of such an X-ray decline and rejuvenation may provide a clue to the outburst mechanism of recurrent novae.

  13. Decline of subpolar North Atlantic circulation during the 1990s.

    PubMed

    Häkkinen, Sirpa; Rhines, Peter B

    2004-04-23

    Observations of sea surface height reveal that substantial changes have occurred over the past decade in the mid- to high-latitude North Atlantic Ocean. TOPEX/Poseidon altimeter data show that subpolar sea surface height increased during the 1990s, and the geostrophic velocity derived from altimeter data exhibits declining subpolar gyre circulation. Combining the data from earlier satellites, we find that subpolar circulation may have been weaker in the late 1990s than in the late 1970s and 1980s. Direct current-meter observations in the boundary current of the Labrador Sea support the weakening circulation trend of the 1990s and, together with hydrographic data, show that the mid- to late 1990s decline extends deep in the water column. Analysis of the local surface forcing suggests that the 1990s buoyancy forcing has a dynamic effect consistent with altimetric and hydrographic observations: A weak thermohaline forcing allows the decay of the domed structure of subpolar isopycnals and weakening of circulation.

  14. Antihypertensive treatments, cognitive decline, and dementia.

    PubMed

    Duron, Emmanuelle; Hanon, Olivier

    2010-01-01

    Chronic hypertension is associated with an increased risk of both vascular dementia and Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this context, the role of anti-hypertensive therapy for the prevention and delay of cognitive decline and dementia is of central importance. Most longitudinal studies have shown a significant inverse association between anti-hypertensive therapies and dementia incidence and for some of these, particularly in AD. Seven randomized, double blind placebo-controlled trials have evaluated the benefit of antihypertensive treatments on cognition. Three of them found positive results in term of prevention of dementia (SYST-EUR) or cognitive decline (PROGRESS, HOPE). Others disclosed non-significant results (MRC, SHEP, SCOPE, HYVET-COG). This discrepancy emphasizes the difficulty to perform such trials: the follow-up has to be long enough to disclose a benefit, a large number of patients is needed for these studies, and because of ethical reasons some anti-hypertensive treatments are often prescribed in the placebo group. Results of the two more recent meta-analyses are inconsistent, possibly due to methodological issues. Antihypertensive treatments could be beneficial to cognitive function by lowering blood pressure and/or by specific neuroprotective effect. Three main antihypertensive subclasses have been associated with a beneficial effect on cognitive function beyond blood pressure reduction (calcium channel blockers, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor, angiotensin-AT1-receptor-blockers). Further long-term randomized trials, designed especially to assess a link between antihypertensive therapy and cognitive decline or dementia are therefore needed with cognition as the primary outcome. A low blood pressure threshold that could be deleterious for cognitive function should also be determined.

  15. Intraguild Predation and Native Lady Beetle Decline

    PubMed Central

    Gardiner, Mary M.; O'Neal, Matthew E.; Landis, Douglas A.

    2011-01-01

    Coccinellid communities across North America have experienced significant changes in recent decades, with declines in several native species reported. One potential mechanism for these declines is interference competition via intraguild predation; specifically, increased predation of native coccinellid eggs and larvae following the introduction of exotic coccinellids. Our previous studies have shown that agricultural fields in Michigan support a higher diversity and abundance of exotic coccinellids than similar fields in Iowa, and that the landscape surrounding agricultural fields across the north central U.S. influences the abundance and activity of coccinellid species. The goal of this study was to quantify the amount of egg predation experienced by a native coccinellid within Michigan and Iowa soybean fields and explore the influence of local and large-scale landscape structure. Using the native lady beetle Coleomegilla maculata as a model, we found that sentinel egg masses were subject to intense predation within both Michigan and Iowa soybean fields, with 60.7% of egg masses attacked and 43.0% of available eggs consumed within 48 h. In Michigan, the exotic coccinellids Coccinella septempunctata and Harmonia axyridis were the most abundant predators found in soybean fields whereas in Iowa, native species including C. maculata, Hippodamia parenthesis and the soft-winged flower beetle Collops nigriceps dominated the predator community. Predator abundance was greater in soybean fields within diverse landscapes, yet variation in predator numbers did not influence the intensity of egg predation observed. In contrast, the strongest predictor of native coccinellid egg predation was the composition of edge habitats bordering specific fields. Field sites surrounded by semi-natural habitats including forests, restored prairies, old fields, and pasturelands experienced greater egg predation than fields surrounded by other croplands. This study shows that intraguild

  16. Steeper declines in forest photosynthesis than respiration explain age-driven decreases in forest growth.

    PubMed

    Tang, Jianwu; Luyssaert, Sebastiaan; Richardson, Andrew D; Kutsch, Werner; Janssens, Ivan A

    2014-06-17

    The traditional view of forest dynamics originated by Kira and Shidei [Kira T, Shidei T (1967) Jap J Ecol 17:70-87] and Odum [Odum EP (1969) Science 164(3877):262-270] suggests a decline in net primary productivity (NPP) in aging forests due to stabilized gross primary productivity (GPP) and continuously increased autotrophic respiration (Ra). The validity of these trends in GPP and Ra is, however, very difficult to test because of the lack of long-term ecosystem-scale field observations of both GPP and Ra. Ryan and colleagues [Ryan MG, Binkley D, Fownes JH (1997) Ad Ecol Res 27:213-262] have proposed an alternative hypothesis drawn from site-specific results that aboveground respiration and belowground allocation decreased in aging forests. Here, we analyzed data from a recently assembled global database of carbon fluxes and show that the classical view of the mechanisms underlying the age-driven decline in forest NPP is incorrect and thus support Ryan's alternative hypothesis. Our results substantiate the age-driven decline in NPP, but in contrast to the traditional view, both GPP and Ra decline in aging boreal and temperate forests. We find that the decline in NPP in aging forests is primarily driven by GPP, which decreases more rapidly with increasing age than Ra does, but the ratio of NPP/GPP remains approximately constant within a biome. Our analytical models describing forest succession suggest that dynamic forest ecosystem models that follow the traditional paradigm need to be revisited.

  17. Multispectral sensing of citrus young tree decline

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edwards, G. J.; Ducharme, E. P.; Schehl, T.

    1975-01-01

    Computer processing of MSS data to identify and map citrus trees affected by young tree decline is analyzed. The data were obtained at 1500-feet altitude in six discrete spectral bands covering regions from 0.53 to 1.3 millimicrons as well as from instrumental ground truths of tree crowns. Measurable spectral reflectance intensity differences are observed in the leaves of healthy and diseased trees, especially at wavelengths of 500 to 600 nm and 700 to 800 nm. The overall accuracy of the method is found to be 89%.

  18. Species decline--but why? Explanations of carabid beetle (Coleoptera, Carabidae) declines in Europe.

    PubMed

    Kotze, D Johan; O'Hara, Robert B

    2003-03-01

    We investigated some of the causes of ground beetle decline using atlas data from Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands, countries in which natural environments have all but disappeared. We used ordinal regression to identify characteristics that are significantly correlated with the decline of carabid beetle species over the last 50-100 years, using a stepwise selection procedure to select the optimal model according to the Akaike Information Criterion. The results showed that large-bodied carabid populations have declined more than smaller ones, possibly because of their lower reproductive output and lower powers of dispersal. Habitat specialist populations (i.e. species with small niche breadths) have also decreased more than habitat generalist populations. Species with both long- and short-winged individuals have been less prone to decline than those that are exclusively either short-winged or long-winged. Dimorphic species may survive better in highly altered environments because long-winged individuals are good at dispersing between suitable habitats and short-winged individuals are good at surviving and reproducing in these newly colonised habitats. Finally, populations of large carabids associated with coastal, woodland or riparian habitat types were less prone to decline than populations of large carabids associated with various, open or grassland habitat types. The pattern is reversed for carabid species smaller than 8 mm in size. These results are explained in the context of habitat restoration and destruction in these highly modified western European countries.

  19. Fatigue-induced changes in decline running.

    PubMed

    Mizrahi, J; Verbitsky, O; Isakov, E

    2001-03-01

    Study the relation between muscle fatigue during eccentric muscle contractions and kinematics of the legs in downhill running. Decline running on a treadmill was used to acquire data on shock accelerations, muscle activity and kinematics, for comparison with level running. In downhill running, local muscle fatigue is the cause of morphological muscle damage which leads to reduced attenuation of shock accelerations. Fourteen subjects ran on a treadmill above level-running anaerobic threshold speed for 30 min, in level and -4 degrees decline running. The following were monitored: metabolic fatigue by means of respiratory parameters; muscle fatigue of the quadriceps by means of elevation in myoelectric activity; and kinematic parameters including knee and ankle angles and hip vertical excursion by means of computerized videography. Data on shock transmission reported in previous studies were also used. Quadriceps fatigue develops in parallel to an increasing vertical excursion of the hip in the stance phase of running, enabled by larger dorsi flexion of the ankle rather than by increased flexion of the knee. The decrease in shock attenuation can be attributed to quadriceps muscle fatigue in parallel to increased vertical excursion of the hips.

  20. Declining suburbs in Europe and Latin America.

    PubMed

    Audirac, Ivonne; Cunningham-Sabot, Emmanuèle; Fol, Sylvie; Moraes, Sergio Torres

    2012-01-01

    Suburban shrinkage, understood as a degenerative urban process stemming from the demise of the Fordist mode of urbanism, is generally manifested in a decline in population, industry and employment. It is also intimately linked to the global restructuring of industrial organization associated with the rise of the post-Fordist mode of urbanism and, more recently, the thrust of Asian industrialization. Framed in the discourse of industrial urbanism, this article examines the first ring of industrial suburbs that developed around large cities in their most rapid Fordist urbanization phase. These industrial suburbs, although they were formed at different times, are today experiencing specific mutations and undergoing profound restructuring on account of their particular spatial position between the central area and the expanding peripheries of the post-Fordist metropolis. This article describes and compares suburban decline in two European cities (Glasgow and Paris) and two Latin American Cities (São Paulo, Brazil and Guadalajara, Mexico), as different instances of places asymmetrically and fragmentarily integrated into the geography of globalization.

  1. The cultural evolution of fertility decline

    PubMed Central

    Colleran, Heidi

    2016-01-01

    Cultural evolutionists have long been interested in the problem of why fertility declines as populations develop. By outlining plausible mechanistic links between individual decision-making, information flow in populations and competition between groups, models of cultural evolution offer a novel and powerful approach for integrating multiple levels of explanation of fertility transitions. However, only a modest number of models have been published. Their assumptions often differ from those in other evolutionary approaches to social behaviour, but their empirical predictions are often similar. Here I offer the first overview of cultural evolutionary research on demographic transition, critically compare it with approaches taken by other evolutionary researchers, identify gaps and overlaps, and highlight parallel debates in demography. I suggest that researchers divide their labour between three distinct phases of fertility decline—the origin, spread and maintenance of low fertility—each of which may be driven by different causal processes, at different scales, requiring different theoretical and empirical tools. A comparative, multi-level and mechanistic framework is essential for elucidating both the evolved aspects of our psychology that govern reproductive decision-making, and the social, ecological and cultural contingencies that precipitate and sustain fertility decline. PMID:27022079

  2. Marbled murrelets have declined in Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Piatt, John F.

    1998-01-01

    In the last issue of Northwest Science, Hayward and Iverson (“Long-Term Trends in Marbled Murrelets in Southeast Alaska Based on Christmas Bird Counts”) failed to mention other evidence for 40-75% declines in murrelet populations, or discuss implications of a climate regime shift that has reduced populations of seabirds in Alaska, or present any useful information on the status of old-growth breeding habitat for murrelets. They examined Christmas Bird Count (CBC) data from Southeast Alaska, and concluded that there is no evidence for declines in populations. They suggested that our (Piatt and Naslund 1995) previous analysis of CBC data for murrelets was erroneous, and suggested that “the disparity between our conclusions… invites explanation”.Invitation accepted. In the following, I will show that there was no disparity in conclusions, that Hayward and Iverson mis-represented our conclusions and they conducted a highly selective review of evidence for murrelet population changes in Alaska. The result was a paper that was inaccurate, incomplete, out-of-date, mis-leading and of little service to the readers of Northwest Science who might have read the article hoping to gain some new insight on the status of marbled murrelets in Alaska.

  3. Potential output and the recent productivity decline

    SciTech Connect

    Tatom, J.A.

    1982-01-01

    Recent revisions in the measures of the nation's output and capital stock, as well as minor changes in procedures, have altered the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis' measures of potential output. The major conclusions of earlier Bank studies, however, have been unaffected by these changes. In particular, the growth of potential output has been sharply reduced by the 1973 to 1974 and 1979 to 1980 energy shocks and subsequent adjustments in the desired capital intensity of production. These effects have been confirmed by the re-estimation of earlier production function coefficients, and, more important, the confirmation of the prior empirical estimates in the latest round of energy price increases. The decline in the growth of potential output since 1973 has, in recent years, been acknowledged by the Council of Economic Advisers, (CEA), but through a trend reduction rather than through sharp temporary declines in 1974 to 1975 and 1979 to 1980 as implied here. Nonetheless, the level of potential output estimated by the CEA in recent years is little different from this Bank's estimate. The slowing in potential output masks a sharper reduction in the growth of productivity in recent years. A detailed analysis of productivity developments shows a marked deterioration in growth relative to past trends. In the measurement of potential output, this deterioration has been partially offset by a more rapid growth of both potential and actual employment. 17 references, 5 figures, 6 tables.

  4. Nutritional factors, cognitive decline, and dementia.

    PubMed

    Del Parigi, Angelo; Panza, Francesco; Capurso, Cristiano; Solfrizzi, Vincenzo

    2006-03-15

    Nutritional factors and nutritional deficiencies have been repeatedly associated with cognitive impairment. Most of the evidence is based on cross-sectional studies, which cannot prove whether a nutritional deficit is the cause or the consequence of an impaired cognitive status. In fact, cognitive impairment, in turn, can determine changes in dietary habits and consequent nutritional deficiencies. We reviewed clinical and epidemiological studies from January 1983 to June 2004. Several cross-sectional and fewer prospective studies reported an association between dietary or supplemental intake of antioxidants and protection from cognitive decline and dementia. There are negative reports as well and some methodological biases might have affected the consistencies across studies. Deficiencies of several B vitamins have been associated with cognitive dysfunction in many observational studies. More recently, deficiencies of folate (B9) and cobalamine (B12) have been studied in relation to hyperhomocysteinemia as potential determinants of cognitive impairment, dementia, and Alzheimer's disease (AD). A small number of studies assessed the association between intake of macronutrients and cognitive function or dementia. Among the others, the intake of fatty acids and cholesterol has received particular attention. Although the results are not always consistent, most studies have reported a protective role of dietary intakes of poly- and mono-unsaturated fatty acids against cognitive decline and AD. We point out that well designed intervention studies are warranted in order to establish specific levels of micro- and macronutrient deficiencies and to set general recommendations for the population.

  5. The impact of freedom on fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Martha M; Prata, Ndola; Potts, Malcolm

    2013-01-01

    Although fertility decline often correlates with improvements in socioeconomic conditions, many demographers have found flaws in demographic transition theories that depend on changes in distal factors such as increased wealth or education. Human beings worldwide engage in sexual intercourse much more frequently than is needed to conceive the number of children they want, and for women who do not have access to the information and means they need to separate sex from childbearing, the default position is a large family. In many societies, male patriarchal drives to control female reproduction give rise to unnecessary medical rules constraining family planning (including safe abortion) or justifying child marriage. Widespread misinformation about contraception makes women afraid to adopt modern family planning. The barriers to family planning can be so deeply infused that for many women the idea of managing their fertility is not considered an option. Conversely, there is evidence that once family planning is introduced into a society, then it is normal consumer behaviour for individuals to welcome a new technology they had not wanted until it became realistically available. We contend that in societies free from child marriage, wherever women have access to a range of contraceptive methods, along with correct information and backed up by safe abortion, family size will always fall. Education and wealth can make the adoption of family planning easier, but they are not prerequisites for fertility decline. By contrast, access to family planning itself can accelerate economic development and the spread of education.

  6. Healthcare worker influenza declination form program.

    PubMed

    LaVela, Sherri L; Hill, Jennifer N; Smith, Bridget M; Evans, Charlesnika T; Goldstein, Barry; Martinello, Richard

    2015-06-01

    Health care worker (HCW) vaccination rates have been low for many years (approximately 50%). Our goal was to implement an influenza declination form program (DFP) to assess feasibility, participation, HCW vaccination, and costs. This was a prospective interventional pilot study using mixed methods to evaluate the DFP implementation processes and outcomes. We conducted a formative evaluation and interviews; data were transcribed and coded into themes. Secondary outcomes included self-reported HCW influenza vaccine uptake (pre-/postsurvey) and program costs; data were evaluated using descriptive and bivariate analyses. The DFP was compatible with ongoing strategies and unit culture. Barriers included multiple hospital shifts and competing demands. Facilitators included complementary ongoing strategies and leadership engagement. HCW vaccination rates were higher post- versus preimplementation (77.4% vs 53.5%, P =.01). To implement the DFP at site 1, using a mobile flu cart, 100% of declination forms were completed in 42.5 staff hours over <2 months. At site 2, using a vaccination table on all staff meeting days, 49% of forms were completed in 26.5 staff hours over 4.5 months. Average cost of staff time was $2,093 per site. DFP implementation required limited resources and resulted in increased HCW influenza vaccine rates; this may have positive clinical implications for influenza infection control/prevention. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Catastrophic ape decline in western equatorial Africa.

    PubMed

    Walsh, Peter D; Abernethy, Kate A; Bermejo, Magdalena; Beyers, Rene; De Wachter, Pauwel; Akou, Marc Ella; Huijbregts, Bas; Mambounga, Daniel Idiata; Toham, Andre Kamdem; Kilbourn, Annelisa M; Lahm, Sally A; Latour, Stefanie; Maisels, Fiona; Mbina, Christian; Mihindou, Yves; Obiang, Sosthène Ndong; Effa, Ernestine Ntsame; Starkey, Malcolm P; Telfer, Paul; Thibault, Marc; Tutin, Caroline E G; White, Lee J T; Wilkie, David S

    2003-04-10

    Because rapidly expanding human populations have devastated gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) and common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) habitats in East and West Africa, the relatively intact forests of western equatorial Africa have been viewed as the last stronghold of African apes. Gabon and the Republic of Congo alone are thought to hold roughly 80% of the world's gorillas and most of the common chimpanzees. Here we present survey results conservatively indicating that ape populations in Gabon declined by more than half between 1983 and 2000. The primary cause of the decline in ape numbers during this period was commercial hunting, facilitated by the rapid expansion of mechanized logging. Furthermore, Ebola haemorrhagic fever is currently spreading through ape populations in Gabon and Congo and now rivals hunting as a threat to apes. Gorillas and common chimpanzees should be elevated immediately to 'critically endangered' status. Without aggressive investments in law enforcement, protected area management and Ebola prevention, the next decade will see our closest relatives pushed to the brink of extinction.

  8. The impact of freedom on fertility decline

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Martha M; Prata, Ndola; Potts, Malcolm

    2013-01-01

    Although fertility decline often correlates with improvements in socioeconomic conditions, many demographers have found flaws in demographic transition theories that depend on changes in distal factors such as increased wealth or education. Human beings worldwide engage in sexual intercourse much more frequently than is needed to conceive the number of children they want, and for women who do not have access to the information and means they need to separate sex from childbearing, the default position is a large family. In many societies, male patriarchal drives to control female reproduction give rise to unnecessary medical rules constraining family planning (including safe abortion) or justifying child marriage. Widespread misinformation about contraception makes women afraid to adopt modern family planning. The barriers to family planning can be so deeply infused that for many women the idea of managing their fertility is not considered an option. Conversely, there is evidence that once family planning is introduced into a society, then it is normal consumer behaviour for individuals to welcome a new technology they had not wanted until it became realistically available. We contend that in societies free from child marriage, wherever women have access to a range of contraceptive methods, along with correct information and backed up by safe abortion, family size will always fall. Education and wealth can make the adoption of family planning easier, but they are not prerequisites for fertility decline. By contrast, access to family planning itself can accelerate economic development and the spread of education. PMID:23296851

  9. Dehydroepiandrosterone and age-related cognitive decline.

    PubMed

    Sorwell, Krystina G; Urbanski, Henryk F

    2010-03-01

    In humans the circulating concentrations of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and DHEA sulfate (DHEAS) decrease markedly during aging, and have been implicated in age-associated cognitive decline. This has led to the hypothesis that DHEA supplementation during aging may improve memory. In rodents, a cognitive anti-aging effect of DHEA and DHEAS has been observed but it is unclear whether this effect is mediated indirectly through conversion of these steroids to estradiol. Moreover, despite the demonstration of correlations between endogenous DHEA concentrations and cognitive ability in certain human patient populations, such correlations have yet to be convincingly demonstrated during normal human aging. This review highlights important differences between rodents and primates in terms of their circulating DHEA and DHEAS concentrations, and suggests that age-related changes within the human DHEA metabolic pathway may contribute to the relative inefficacy of DHEA replacement therapies in humans. The review also highlights the value of using nonhuman primates as a pragmatic animal model for testing the therapeutic potential of DHEA for age-associate cognitive decline in humans.

  10. Status and trends of amphibian declines and extinctions worldwide.

    PubMed

    Stuart, Simon N; Chanson, Janice S; Cox, Neil A; Young, Bruce E; Rodrigues, Ana S L; Fischman, Debra L; Waller, Robert W

    2004-12-03

    The first global assessment of amphibians provides new context for the well-publicized phenomenon of amphibian declines. Amphibians are more threatened and are declining more rapidly than either birds or mammals. Although many declines are due to habitat loss and overutilization, other, unidentified processes threaten 48% of rapidly declining species and are driving species most quickly to extinction. Declines are nonrandom in terms of species' ecological preferences, geographic ranges, and taxonomic associations and are most prevalent among Neotropical montane, stream-associated species. The lack of conservation remedies for these poorly understood declines means that hundreds of amphibian species now face extinction.

  11. Trajectory of Cognitive Decline after Incident Stroke

    PubMed Central

    Levine, Deborah A.; Galecki, Andrzej T.; Langa, Kenneth M.; Unverzagt, Frederick W.; Kabeto, Mohammed U.; Giordani, Bruno; Wadley, Virginia G.

    2015-01-01

    Importance Cognitive decline is a major cause of disability in stroke survivors. The magnitude of survivors’ cognitive changes after stroke is uncertain. Objective To measure changes in cognitive function among survivors of incident stroke, controlling for their prestroke cognitive trajectories. Design, Setting, and Participants Prospective study of 23,572 participants aged ≥45 years without baseline cognitive impairment from the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) cohort, residing in the continental United States, enrolled 2003–2007 and followed through March 31, 2013. Over a median follow-up of 6.1 years (25th–75th percentile: 5.0–7.1 years), 515 participants survived expert-adjudicated incident stroke and 23,057 remained stroke-free. Exposure Time-dependent incident stroke. Outcome Measures The primary outcome was change in global cognition (Six-Item Screener, SIS; range 0–6). Secondary outcomes were change in new learning (Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer’s Disease Word List Learning; range 0–30), verbal memory (Word List Delayed Recall; range 0–10), and executive function (Animal Fluency Test; range ≥0), and cognitive impairment (SIS<5/impaired vs. ≥5/unimpaired). For all tests, higher scores indicate better performance. Results Stroke was associated with acute decline in global cognition (0.10 points; 95% CI, 0.04–0.17), new learning (1.80 points; 95% CI, 0.73–2.86), and verbal memory (0.60 points; 95% CI, 0.13–1.07). Participants with stroke, compared to those without stroke, demonstrated faster declines in global cognition (0.06 points per year faster; 95% CI, 0.03–0.08) and executive function (0.63 points per year faster; 95% CI, 0.12–1.15), but not in new learning and verbal memory, compared to prestroke slopes. Among survivors, the difference in risk of cognitive impairment acutely after stroke was not statistically significant (odds ratio, 1.32; 95% CI, 0.95–1.83; P=0

  12. Linking community and ecosystem dynamics through spatial ecology.

    PubMed

    Massol, François; Gravel, Dominique; Mouquet, Nicolas; Cadotte, Marc W; Fukami, Tadashi; Leibold, Mathew A

    2011-03-01

    Classical approaches to food webs focus on patterns and processes occurring at the community level rather than at the broader ecosystem scale, and often ignore spatial aspects of the dynamics. However, recent research suggests that spatial processes influence both food web and ecosystem dynamics, and has led to the idea of 'metaecosystems'. However, these processes have been tackled separately by 'food web metacommunity' ecology, which focuses on the movement of traits, and 'landscape ecosystem' ecology, which focuses on the movement of materials among ecosystems. Here, we argue that this conceptual gap must be bridged to fully understand ecosystem dynamics because many natural cases demonstrate the existence of interactions between the movements of traits and materials. This unification of concepts can be achieved under the metaecosystem framework, and we present two models that highlight how this framework yields novel insights. We then discuss patches, limiting factors and spatial explicitness as key issues to advance metaecosystem theory. We point out future avenues for research on metaecosystem theory and their potential for application to biological conservation. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  13. Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines.

    PubMed

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

    2010-05-28

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

  14. Predicting extinction risk in declining species.

    PubMed Central

    Purvis, A; Gittleman, J L; Cowlishaw, G; Mace, G M

    2000-01-01

    What biological attributes predispose species to the risk of extinction? There are many hypotheses but so far there has been no systematic analysis for discriminating between them. Using complete phylogenies of contemporary carnivores and primates, we present, to our knowledge, the first comparative test showing that high trophic level, low population density slow life history and, in particular, small geographical range size are all significantly and independently associated with a high extinction risk in declining species. These traits together explain nearly 50% of the total between-species variation in extinction risk. Much of the remaining variation can be accounted for by external anthropogenic factors that affect species irrespective of their biology. PMID:11075706

  15. Consequences of Age-Related Cognitive Declines

    PubMed Central

    Salthouse, Timothy

    2013-01-01

    Adult age differences in a variety of cognitive abilities are well documented, and many of those abilities have been found to be related to success in the workplace and in everyday life. However, increased age is seldom associated with lower levels of real-world functioning, and the reasons for this lab-life discrepancy are not well understood. This article briefly reviews research concerned with relations of age to cognition, relations of cognition to successful functioning outside the laboratory, and relations of age to measures of work performance and achievement. The final section discusses several possible explanations for why there are often little or no consequences of age-related cognitive declines in everyday functioning. PMID:21740223

  16. Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2011-01-01

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

  17. Declination of supralaryngeal gestures in spoken Italian.

    PubMed

    Vayra, M; Fowler, C A

    1992-01-01

    Two experiments investigate a weakening of supralaryngeal gestures in an utterance, analogous in some ways to declination of fundamental frequency and amplitude. In one experiment, acoustic measures revealed progressive centralization of stressed /i/, /a/ and /u/ left to right in trisyllabic utterances read by Tuscan subjects. A second experiment, using speakers of a different (Northern) variety of Standard Italian, found reduction in jaw opening for stressed /a/ left to right, but generally failed to replicate a centralization of /i/. This experiment further suggested that the progressive weakening of supralaryngeal gestures is largely a phrase level rather than a word level phenomenon. Both experiments found a different, V-shaped, pattern of opening to be generally characteristic of unstressed syllables.

  18. Decline of radionuclides in Columbia River biota

    SciTech Connect

    Cushing, C.E.; Watson, D.G.; Scott, A.J.; Gurtisen, J.M.

    1980-03-01

    In January 1971, the last of nine plutonium production reactors using direct discharge of once-through cooling waters into the Columbia River was closed. Sampling was initiated at three stations on the Columbia River to document the decline of the radionuclide body burdens in the biota of the Columbia River ecosystem. The data show that in a river-reservoir complex, the measurable body burden of fission-produced radionuclides decreased to essentially undetectable levels within 18 to 24 mo after cessation of discharge of once-through cooling water into the river. On the basis of data from the free-flowing station, we believe that this decrease would be even more rapid in an unimpounded river.

  19. Inappropriate treatments for patients with cognitive decline.

    PubMed

    Robles Bayón, A; Gude Sampedro, F

    2014-01-01

    Some treatments are inappropriate for patients with cognitive decline. We analyse their use in 500 patients and present a literature review. Benzodiazepines produce dependence, and reduce attention, memory, and motor ability. They can cause disinhibition or aggressive behaviour, facilitate the appearance of delirium, and increase accident and mortality rates in people older than 60. In subjects over 65, low systolic blood pressure is associated with cognitive decline. Maintaining this figure between 130 and 140 mm Hg (145 in patients older than 80) is recommended. Hypocholesterolaemia < 160 mg/dl is associated with increased morbidity and mortality, aggressiveness, and suicide; HDL-cholesterol<40 mg/dl is associated with memory loss and increased vascular and mortality risks. Old age is a predisposing factor for developing cognitive disorders or delirium when taking opioids. The risks of prescribing anticholinesterases and memantine to patients with non-Alzheimer dementia that is not associated with Parkinson disease, mild cognitive impairment, or psychiatric disorders probably outweigh the benefits. Anticholinergic drugs acting preferentially on the peripheral system can also induce cognitive side effects. Practitioners should be aware of steroid-induced dementia and steroid-induced psychosis, and know that risk of delirium increases with polypharmacy. Of 500 patients with cognitive impairment, 70.4% were on multiple medications and 42% were taking benzodiazepines. Both conditions were present in 74.3% of all suspected iatrogenic cases. Polypharmacy should be avoided, if it is not essential, especially in elderly patients and those with cognitive impairment. Benzodiazepines, opioids and anticholinergics often elicit cognitive and behavioural disorders. Moreover, systolic blood pressure must be kept above 130 mm Hg, total cholesterol levels over 160 mg/dl, and HDL-cholesterol over 40 mg/dl in this population. Copyright © 2012 Sociedad Española de Neurolog

  20. The decline in child mortality: a reappraisal.

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, O. B.; Lopez, A. D.; Inoue, M.

    2000-01-01

    The present paper examines, describes and documents country-specific trends in under-five mortality rates (i.e., mortality among children under five years of age) in the 1990s. Our analysis updates previous studies by UNICEF, the World Bank and the United Nations. It identifies countries and WHO regions where sustained improvement has occurred and those where setbacks are evident. A consistent series of estimates of under-five mortality rate is provided and an indication is given of historical trends during the period 1950-2000 for both developed and developing countries. It is estimated that 10.5 million children aged 0-4 years died in 1999, about 2.2 million or 17.5% fewer than a decade earlier. On average about 15% of newborn children in Africa are expected to die before reaching their fifth birthday. The corresponding figures for many other parts of the developing world are in the range 3-8% and that for Europe is under 2%. During the 1990s the decline in child mortality decelerated in all the WHO regions except the Western Pacific but there is no widespread evidence of rising child mortality rates. At the country level there are exceptions in southern Africa where the prevalence of HIV is extremely high and in Asia where a few countries are beset by economic difficulties. The slowdown in the rate of decline is of particular concern in Africa and South-East Asia because it is occurring at relatively high levels of mortality, and in countries experiencing severe economic dislocation. As the HIV/AIDS epidemic continues in Africa, particularly southern Africa, and in parts of Asia, further reductions in child mortality become increasingly unlikely until substantial progress in controlling the spread of HIV is achieved. PMID:11100613

  1. Oak decline risk rating for the southeastern United States

    Treesearch

    S. Oak; F. Tainter; J. Williams; D. Starkey

    1996-01-01

    Oak decline risk rating models were developed for upland hardwood forests in the southeastern United States using data gathered during regional oak decline surveys. Stepwise discriminant analyses were used to relate 12 stand and site variables with major oak decline incidence for each of three subregions plus one incorporating all subregions. The best model for the...

  2. Effects of Declining Enrollments: A New Mexico Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davis, Beatrice L.

    Because 66 of New Mexico's 89 public school districts experienced declines in 1981-82 enrollments and most were unable to decrease educational costs at the same rate as their decline in enrollment, the legislature requested a study on effects of declining enrollment and possible adjustments to the school distribution funding formula to cushion…

  3. Depressed Mood Mediates Decline in Cognitive Processing Speed in Caregivers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vitaliano, Peter P.; Zhang, Jianping; Young, Heather M.; Caswell, Lisa W.; Scanlan, James M.; Echeverria, Diana

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: Very few studies have examined cognitive decline in caregivers versus noncaregivers, and only 1 study has examined mediators of such decline. We evaluated the relationship between caregiver status and decline on the digit symbol test (DST; a measure of processing speed, attention, cognitive-motor translation, and visual scanning) and…

  4. 32 CFR 776.35 - Declining or terminating representation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Declining or terminating representation. 776.35... ADVOCATE GENERAL Rules of Professional Conduct § 776.35 Declining or terminating representation. (a) Declining or terminating representation: (1) Except as stated in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, a covered...

  5. Withering away--25,000 years of genetic decline preceded cave bear extinction.

    PubMed

    Stiller, Mathias; Baryshnikov, Gennady; Bocherens, Hervé; Grandal d'Anglade, Aurora; Hilpert, Brigitte; Münzel, Susanne C; Pinhasi, Ron; Rabeder, Gernot; Rosendahl, Wilfried; Trinkaus, Erik; Hofreiter, Michael; Knapp, Michael

    2010-05-01

    The causes of the late Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions are still enigmatic. Although the fossil record can provide approximations for when a species went extinct, the timing of its disappearance alone cannot resolve the causes and mode of the decline preceding its extinction. However, ancient DNA analyses can reveal population size changes over time and narrow down potential causes of extinction. Here, we present an ancient DNA study comparing late Pleistocene population dynamics of two closely related species, cave and brown bears. We found that the decline of cave bears started approximately 25,000 years before their extinction, whereas brown bear population size remained constant. We conclude that neither the effects of climate change nor human hunting alone can be responsible for the decline of the cave bear and suggest that a complex of factors including human competition for cave sites lead to the cave bear's extinction.

  6. Red spruce decline in the northeastern US: hypotheses regarding the role of acid rain

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, A.H.

    1983-11-01

    Red spruce have died in abnormal numbers in the high elevation forests of New York and New England during the past two decades while spruce in the southern Appalachians remain healthy. Investigations of insect damage, fungai pathogens, successional dynamics, competitive status, climate and weather patterns, and possible pollutant effects indicate that the decline was triggered by abiotic stress during the dry years of the 1960s. Tree response, as recorded in the pattern of annual rings, and the wide range of soil conditions in which spruce are declining, suggest drought or dry summers as key factors. Hypotheses regarding the role of acid deposition induced stress have been offered, but at present there is not evidence which clearly links acid deposition to spruce decline. Indirect effects of acid deposition on soils, direct effects of acid deposition on foliage, and interactions of acid deposition and drought stress are possible but unproven pathways by which acid deposition could be involved. 23 references, 6 figures, 1 table.

  7. A human-driven decline in global burned area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andela, N.; Morton, D. C.; Chen, Y.; van der Werf, G.; Giglio, L.; Kasibhatla, P. S.; Randerson, J. T.

    2016-12-01

    Fire is an important and dynamic ecosystem process that influences many aspects of the global Earth system. Here, we used several different satellite datasets to assess trends in global burned area during 1998 to 2014. Global burned area decreased by about 21.6 ± 8.5% over the period from 1998-2014, with large regional declines observed in savanna and grassland ecosystems in northern Africa, Eurasia, and South America. The decrease in burned area remained robust after removing the influence of climate (16.0 ± 6.0%), implicating human activity as a likely driver. To further investigate the mechanisms contributing to regional and global trends, we conducted several kinds of analysis, including separation of burned area into ignition and fire size components and geospatial analysis of fire trends in relationship with demographic and land use variables. We found that fire number was a more important factor contributing to burned area trends than fire size, suggesting a reduction in the use of fire for management purposes. Concurrent decreases in fire size also contributed to the trend outside of North and South America, suggesting a role for greater landscape fragmentation. From our geospatial analysis, we developed a conceptual model that incorporates a range of drivers for human-driven changes in biomass burning that can be used to guide global fire models, currently unable to reproduce these large scale recent trends. Patterns of agricultural expansion and land use intensification are likely to further contribute to declining burned area trends in future decades, with important consequences for Earth system processes mediated by surface albedo, greenhouse gas emissions, and aerosols. Our results also highlight the vulnerability of savannas and grassland to land use changes with unprecedented global scale consequences for vegetation structure and the carbon cycle.

  8. Declining survival across invasion history for Microstegium vimineum.

    PubMed

    Cunard, Chelsea E; Lankau, Richard A

    2017-01-01

    Many alien species become invasive because they lack coevolutionary history with the native community; for instance, they may lack specialized enemies. These evolutionary advantages may allow the invader to establish and persist when rare within a community and lead to its monodominance through positive frequency dependence, i.e. increasing per capita population growth rate with increasing frequency of conspecifics. However, this advantage could degrade through time due to evolutionary and ecological changes in the invasive and native plant and microbial communities. We investigated survival rates and individual biomass as proxies for per capita population growth rates for the invasive grass, Microstegium vimineum, across a gradient of conspecific frequencies (10-100% relative cover of M. vimineum) within 12 sites that varied in time since invasion. We expected M. vimineum frequency dependence to become more negative and its proxies for population growth at low conspecific frequency to decline across invasion history. We also explored the belowground fungal community associated with M. vimineum, since we hypothesized that changes in M. vimineum population dynamics may result from shifting microbial interactions over time. Microstegium vimineum frequency dependence changed from negative to neutral across invasion history and the shift was driven by a decline in survival at low frequency. Changes in M. vimineum root fungal community were associated with time since invasion. Our results do not support a shift in frequency dependence from positive to negative across invasion history. However, our results suggest M. vimineum populations may be less prone to persist at older invaded sites and thus more vulnerable to management intervention.

  9. A review of the role of contaminants in amphibian declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sparling, D.W.; Hoffman, David J.; Rattner, Barnett A.; Burton, G. Allen; Cairns, John=

    2003-01-01

    CONCLUSIONS--Although there are no published studies that demonstrate beyond all doubt that contaminants are involved in long term population declines of amphibians, there is ample evidence and reason to encourage active research and concern about effects. Many contaminants are lethal to amphibians at environmentally realistic concentrations. Acute mortality from these compounds may be difficult to detect because investigators would have to be present shortly after exposures. Chronic mortality may be masked by metapopulation phenomena so that areas that serve as population sinks may be repeatedly recolonized and difficult to identify. Metapopulation dynamics also make it more difficult to define discrete populations. Contaminants also have many sublethal effects on behavior, energetics, malformations, and diverse effects on physiological pathways which, by themselves might not lead to overt death but could alter reproduction or interact with other factors to result in gradual declines in populations. Scientific understanding of these interactions, and of the ecotoxicology of amphibians in general is far behind what is known about birds, fish, and mammals, and research is desperately needed in this area. Some specific suggestions for critically needed research include: (1) Determination of lethal concentrations of common contaminants - pesticides, PAHs, metals--under environmentally realistic conditions of light, temperature, and water chemistry. (2) Better understanding of the effects of long term (weeks, months), low- concentration exposure of persistent pesticides and stable contaminants on amphibians. (3) Development and refinement of bioindicators in amphibians to use in monitoring and screening for potential effects of contaminants in declining amphibian populations. (4) Further studies on the interaction between contaminants and disease agents including immunosuppression in amphibians. (5) Additional research on the interaction between ultraviolet radiation

  10. Regional-Scale Declines in Productivity of Pink and Chum Salmon Stocks in Western North America

    PubMed Central

    Malick, Michael J.; Cox, Sean P.

    2016-01-01

    Sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) stocks throughout the southern part of their North American range have experienced declines in productivity over the past two decades. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that pink (O. gorbuscha) and chum (O. keta) salmon stocks have also experienced recent declines in productivity by investigating temporal and spatial trends in productivity of 99 wild North American pink and chum salmon stocks. We used a combination of population dynamics and time series models to quantify individual stock trends as well as common temporal trends in pink and chum salmon productivity across local, regional, and continental spatial scales. Our results indicated widespread declines in productivity of wild chum salmon stocks throughout Washington (WA) and British Columbia (BC) with 81% of stocks showing recent declines in productivity, although the exact form of the trends varied among regions. For pink salmon, the majority of stocks in WA and BC (65%) did not have strong temporal trends in productivity; however, all stocks that did have trends in productivity showed declining productivity since at least brood year 1996. We found weaker evidence of widespread declines in productivity for Alaska pink and chum salmon, with some regions and stocks showing declines in productivity (e.g., Kodiak chum salmon stocks) and others showing increases (e.g., Alaska Peninsula pink salmon stocks). We also found strong positive covariation between stock productivity series at the regional spatial scale for both pink and chum salmon, along with evidence that this regional-scale positive covariation has become stronger since the early 1990s in WA and BC. In general, our results suggest that common processes operating at the regional or multi-regional spatial scales drive productivity of pink and chum salmon stocks in western North America and that the effects of these process on productivity may change over time. PMID:26760510

  11. Regional-Scale Declines in Productivity of Pink and Chum Salmon Stocks in Western North America.

    PubMed

    Malick, Michael J; Cox, Sean P

    2016-01-01

    Sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) stocks throughout the southern part of their North American range have experienced declines in productivity over the past two decades. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that pink (O. gorbuscha) and chum (O. keta) salmon stocks have also experienced recent declines in productivity by investigating temporal and spatial trends in productivity of 99 wild North American pink and chum salmon stocks. We used a combination of population dynamics and time series models to quantify individual stock trends as well as common temporal trends in pink and chum salmon productivity across local, regional, and continental spatial scales. Our results indicated widespread declines in productivity of wild chum salmon stocks throughout Washington (WA) and British Columbia (BC) with 81% of stocks showing recent declines in productivity, although the exact form of the trends varied among regions. For pink salmon, the majority of stocks in WA and BC (65%) did not have strong temporal trends in productivity; however, all stocks that did have trends in productivity showed declining productivity since at least brood year 1996. We found weaker evidence of widespread declines in productivity for Alaska pink and chum salmon, with some regions and stocks showing declines in productivity (e.g., Kodiak chum salmon stocks) and others showing increases (e.g., Alaska Peninsula pink salmon stocks). We also found strong positive covariation between stock productivity series at the regional spatial scale for both pink and chum salmon, along with evidence that this regional-scale positive covariation has become stronger since the early 1990s in WA and BC. In general, our results suggest that common processes operating at the regional or multi-regional spatial scales drive productivity of pink and chum salmon stocks in western North America and that the effects of these process on productivity may change over time.

  12. Species decline: Contaminants and other contributing factors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pattee, O.H.; Rattner, B.A.; Eisler, R.

    1998-01-01

    Members of over 1,200 taxa have been listed as Threatened or Endangered, and over 4,000 additional organisms have been identified as Candidate Species or Species of Concern. Identification of critical limiting factors may result in management actions that stabilize vulnerable populations and insure their perpetuation. Both naturally-occurring and anthropogenic activities (e.g., environmental contaminants and pollution) have been demonstrated to be a significant factor in depressing populations or catalyzing the final crash of some species. The objective of this project is to develop a synthesis document and database that lists and ranks the presumed causes of decline, with special emphasis on contaminants and pollutant-related situations. This will be accomplished by synoptic review of all recovery plans (n=479) with listing packages (n=1134) serving as a secondary source of information, followed by itemization, cross-referencing, enumeration, and ranking of contributing and limiting factors. To date we have analyzed all of the recovery plans for reptiles (n=26) and amphibians (n=6). 188 causes are defined, falling into 6 major categories: habitat alteration/availability (47.8%); exploitation/harvest (19.7%); introduction of exotic species (10.1%); contaminants (9.0%); miscellaneous others (6.9%); pollution (6.4%). The applicability of these data are extensive, including facilitating reviews of Section 7 consultations and Environmental Impact Statements, reviewing permit applications, conducting environmental contaminant risk assessments, identifying specific data gaps and research needs, selecting potential management actions, and establishing priorities for broad-based research on limiting factors applicable to groups of species rather than the current species-by-species approach. However. caution must be exercised in the use of this data because of the speculative nature of the causes; most of the causes (69.7%) are based on poorly documented expert opinion and

  13. [The decline in population growth, income distribution, and economic recession].

    PubMed

    Banguero, H

    1983-05-01

    This work uses Keynesian principles and an analysis of the Colombian population in the 1970s to argue that the Colombian policy of slowing population growth, which was adopted with the aim of improving the general welfare of the population, has had shortterm negative effects on effective demand and thus on the level of employment and welfare. These negative effects were caused by the inflexibility of income distribution, which prevented expansion of the internal market, complicated by the stagnant condition of the external sector and the budget deficit. The results of the Colombian case study demonstrate how the deceleration of population growth beginning in the 1960s had a significant impact on the levels of consumption and savings and on the patterns of consumption, leading to low levels of investment and little dynamism. Although the current Colombian economic recession is aggravated by contextual factors such as the world economic recession, the high cost of capital, the industrial recession, and declining food production among others, at the core of the crisis are longer term structural determinants such as the decline in the rate of population growth and the highly unequal distribution of income and wealth, which have contributed to a shrinking of the internal market for some types of goods. Given the unlikelihood of renewed rapid population growth, the Keynesian model suggests that the only alternative for increasing aggregate demand is state intervention through public spending and investment and reorientation of the financial system to achieve a dynamic redistribution of income. Based on these findings and on proposals of other analysts, a stragegy for revitalization is proposed which would imply a gradual income redistribution to allow increased consumption of mass produced goods by the low income groups. Direct consumption subsidies would be avoided because of their inflationary and import-expanding tendencies; rather, incentives and support would be

  14. Electrical Stimulation Counteracts Muscle Decline in Seniors

    PubMed Central

    Kern, Helmut; Barberi, Laura; Löfler, Stefan; Sbardella, Simona; Burggraf, Samantha; Fruhmann, Hannah; Carraro, Ugo; Mosole, Simone; Sarabon, Nejc; Vogelauer, Michael; Mayr, Winfried; Krenn, Matthias; Cvecka, Jan; Romanello, Vanina; Pietrangelo, Laura; Protasi, Feliciano; Sandri, Marco; Zampieri, Sandra; Musaro, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    The loss in muscle mass coupled with a decrease in specific force and shift in fiber composition are hallmarks of aging. Training and regular exercise attenuate the signs of sarcopenia. However, pathologic conditions limit the ability to perform physical exercise. We addressed whether electrical stimulation (ES) is an alternative intervention to improve muscle recovery and defined the molecular mechanism associated with improvement in muscle structure and function. We analyzed, at functional, structural, and molecular level, the effects of ES training on healthy seniors with normal life style, without routine sport activity. ES was able to improve muscle torque and functional performances of seniors and increased the size of fast muscle fibers. At molecular level, ES induced up-regulation of IGF-1 and modulation of MuRF-1, a muscle-specific atrophy-related gene. ES also induced up-regulation of relevant markers of differentiating satellite cells and of extracellular matrix remodeling, which might guarantee shape and mechanical forces of trained skeletal muscle as well as maintenance of satellite cell function, reducing fibrosis. Our data provide evidence that ES is a safe method to counteract muscle decline associated with aging. PMID:25104935

  15. Neotropical Amphibian Declines Affect Stream Ecosystem Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Connelly, S.; Pringle, C. M.; Bixby, R. J.; Whiles, M. R.; Lips, K. R.; Brenes, R.; Colon-Gaud, J. C.; Kilham, S.; Hunte-Brown, M.

    2005-05-01

    Global declines of amphibians are well documented, yet effects of these dramatic losses on ecosystem structure and function are poorly understood. As part of a larger collaborative project, we compared two upland Panamanian streams. Both streams are biologically and geologically similar; however, one stream (Fortuna) has recently experienced almost complete extirpation of stream-dwelling frogs, while the other (Cope) still has intact populations. We experimentally excluded tadpoles from localized areas in each stream. We then compared chlorophyll a, algal community composition, ash-free dry mass (AFDM), inorganic matter, and insect assemblages in control and exclusion areas. Additionally, we sampled the natural substrate of both streams monthly for chlorophyll a, algal community composition, AFDM, and inorganic matter. At Cope, chlorophyll a, AFDM, and inorganic matter were greater in areas where tadpoles were excluded than in their presence. Numbers of dominant algal species (e.g., Nupela praecipua and Eunotia siolii) were greater in the exclusion versus control treatments. Monthly sampling of natural substrate indicated higher chlorophyll a and AFDM at Cope compared to Fortuna. Our data suggest that stream-dwelling anuran larvae have significant impacts on algal communities. These results also have implications for predicting the relevance of short-term experimental manipulations to long-term, whole-stream processes.

  16. Declining ecosystem health and the dilution effect

    PubMed Central

    Khalil, Hussein; Ecke, Frauke; Evander, Magnus; Magnusson, Magnus; Hörnfeldt, Birger

    2016-01-01

    The “dilution effect” implies that where species vary in susceptibility to infection by a pathogen, higher diversity often leads to lower infection prevalence in hosts. For directly transmitted pathogens, non-host species may “dilute” infection directly (1) and indirectly (2). Competitors and predators may (1) alter host behavior to reduce pathogen transmission or (2) reduce host density. In a well-studied system, we tested the dilution of the zoonotic Puumala hantavirus (PUUV) in bank voles (Myodes glareolus) by two competitors and a predator. Our study was based on long-term PUUV infection data (2003–2013) in northern Sweden. The field vole (Microtus agrestis) and the common shrew (Sorex araneus) are bank vole competitors and Tengmalm’s owl (Aegolius funereus) is a main predator of bank voles. Infection probability in bank voles decreased when common shrew density increased, suggesting that common shrews reduced PUUV transmission. Field voles suppressed bank vole density in meadows and clear-cuts and indirectly diluted PUUV infection. Further, Tengmalm’s owl decline in 1980–2013 may have contributed to higher PUUV infection rates in bank voles in 2003–2013 compared to 1979–1986. Our study provides further evidence for dilution effect and suggests that owls may have an important role in reducing disease risk. PMID:27499001

  17. Cognitive decline and the default American lifestyle.

    PubMed

    Mirowsky, John

    2011-07-01

    Upward trends in IQ, education, and mental work suggest that cognitive function among seniors should be rising strongly across cohorts. There is little sign of such improvement in recent decades, and some analyses find poorer function in the newer cohorts. This essay explores possible explanations of the anomaly. Major long-term trends that might increase cognitive impairment are reviewed, and their implications are considered. Physical activity is declining, food is increasingly manufactured, body fat is increasing, diabetes and metabolic syndrome are on the rise, the number of prescription drugs per person is increasing, and the proportion of the population either old or obese is growing. Technological and economic development may lower the cognitive function needed for survival. They also lower physical activity in daily life. Sedentary work, transportation, and leisure undermine the aerobic and metabolic fitness required for the brain to perform well. Some prescription drugs impair cognitive function, and others do so when taken for many years or in combination with others. The growing fraction of the population that is either old or obese may further lower physical activity norms and requirements and substitute medical intervention for health, accelerating a trend toward cognitive impairment.

  18. Electrical stimulation counteracts muscle decline in seniors.

    PubMed

    Kern, Helmut; Barberi, Laura; Löfler, Stefan; Sbardella, Simona; Burggraf, Samantha; Fruhmann, Hannah; Carraro, Ugo; Mosole, Simone; Sarabon, Nejc; Vogelauer, Michael; Mayr, Winfried; Krenn, Matthias; Cvecka, Jan; Romanello, Vanina; Pietrangelo, Laura; Protasi, Feliciano; Sandri, Marco; Zampieri, Sandra; Musaro, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    The loss in muscle mass coupled with a decrease in specific force and shift in fiber composition are hallmarks of aging. Training and regular exercise attenuate the signs of sarcopenia. However, pathologic conditions limit the ability to perform physical exercise. We addressed whether electrical stimulation (ES) is an alternative intervention to improve muscle recovery and defined the molecular mechanism associated with improvement in muscle structure and function. We analyzed, at functional, structural, and molecular level, the effects of ES training on healthy seniors with normal life style, without routine sport activity. ES was able to improve muscle torque and functional performances of seniors and increased the size of fast muscle fibers. At molecular level, ES induced up-regulation of IGF-1 and modulation of MuRF-1, a muscle-specific atrophy-related gene. ES also induced up-regulation of relevant markers of differentiating satellite cells and of extracellular matrix remodeling, which might guarantee shape and mechanical forces of trained skeletal muscle as well as maintenance of satellite cell function, reducing fibrosis. Our data provide evidence that ES is a safe method to counteract muscle decline associated with aging.

  19. Cognitive Decline and the Default American Lifestyle

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Objectives. Upward trends in IQ, education, and mental work suggest that cognitive function among seniors should be rising strongly across cohorts. There is little sign of such improvement in recent decades, and some analyses find poorer function in the newer cohorts. This essay explores possible explanations of the anomaly. Methods. Major long-term trends that might increase cognitive impairment are reviewed, and their implications are considered. Results. Physical activity is declining, food is increasingly manufactured, body fat is increasing, diabetes and metabolic syndrome are on the rise, the number of prescription drugs per person is increasing, and the proportion of the population either old or obese is growing. Discussion. Technological and economic development may lower the cognitive function needed for survival. They also lower physical activity in daily life. Sedentary work, transportation, and leisure undermine the aerobic and metabolic fitness required for the brain to perform well. Some prescription drugs impair cognitive function, and others do so when taken for many years or in combination with others. The growing fraction of the population that is either old or obese may further lower physical activity norms and requirements and substitute medical intervention for health, accelerating a trend toward cognitive impairment. PMID:21743052

  20. Cognitive declines precede and predict functional declines in aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Zahodne, Laura B; Manly, Jennifer J; MacKay-Brandt, Anna; Stern, Yaakov

    2013-01-01

    To investigate the temporal ordering of cognitive and functional declines separately in older adults with or without Alzheimer's disease (AD). A community-based longitudinal study of aging and dementia in Northern Manhattan (Washington Heights/Hamilton Heights Inwood Columbia Aging Project) and a multicenter, clinic-based longitudinal study of prevalent AD at Columbia University Medical Center, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Hôpital de la Salpêtrière in Paris, France (the Predictors Study). 3,443 initially non-demented older adults (612 with eventual incident dementia) and 517 patients with AD. Cognitive measures included the modified Mini-Mental State Exam and composite scores of memory and language derived from a standardized neuropsychological battery. Function was measured with the Blessed Dementia Rating Scale, completed by the participant (in the sample of non-demented older adults) or an informant (in the sample of prevalent AD patients). Data were analyzed with autoregressive cross-lagged panel analysis. Cognitive scores more consistently predicted subsequent functional abilities than vice versa in non-demented older adults, participants with eventual incident dementia, and patients with prevalent AD. Cognitive declines appear to precede and cause functional declines prior to and following dementia diagnosis. Standardized neuropsychological tests are valid predictors of later functional changes in both non-demented and demented older adults.

  1. Theoretical analysis of maximum flow declination rate versus maximum area declination rate in phonation.

    PubMed

    Titze, Ingo R

    2006-04-01

    Maximum flow declination rate (MFDR) in the glottis is known to correlate strongly with vocal intensity in voicing. This declination, or negative slope on the glottal airflow waveform, is in part attributable to the maximum area declination rate (MADR) and in part to the overall inertia of the air column of the vocal tract (lungs to lips). The purpose of this theoretical study was to show the possible contributions of air inertance and MADR to MFDR. A simplified computational model of the kinematics of vocal fold movement was utilized to compute a glottal area function. The glottal flow was computed interactively with lumped vocal tract parameters in the form of resistance and inertive reactance. It was shown that MADR depends almost entirely on the ratio of vibrational amplitudes of the lower to upper margins of the vocal fold tissue. Adduction, vertical phase difference, and prephonatory convergence of the glottis have a lesser effect on MADR. A relatively simple rule was developed that relates MFDR to a vibrational amplitude ratio and vocal tract inertance. It was concluded that speakers and singers have multiple options for control of intensity, some of which involve more source-filter interaction than others.

  2. The lognormal handwriter: learning, performing, and declining.

    PubMed

    Plamondon, Réjean; O'Reilly, Christian; Rémi, Céline; Duval, Thérésa

    2013-01-01

    The generation of handwriting is a complex neuromotor skill requiring the interaction of many cognitive processes. It aims at producing a message to be imprinted as an ink trace left on a writing medium. The generated trajectory of the pen tip is made up of strokes superimposed over time. The Kinematic Theory of rapid human movements and its family of lognormal models provide analytical representations of these strokes, often considered as the basic unit of handwriting. This paradigm has not only been experimentally confirmed in numerous predictive and physiologically significant tests but it has also been shown to be the ideal mathematical description for the impulse response of a neuromuscular system. This latter demonstration suggests that the lognormality of the velocity patterns can be interpreted as reflecting the behavior of subjects who are in perfect control of their movements. To illustrate this interpretation, we present a short overview of the main concepts behind the Kinematic Theory and briefly describe how its models can be exploited, using various software tools, to investigate these ideal lognormal behaviors. We emphasize that the parameters extracted during various tasks can be used to analyze some underlying processes associated with their realization. To investigate the operational convergence hypothesis, we report on two original studies. First, we focus on the early steps of the motor learning process as seen as a converging behavior toward the production of more precise lognormal patterns as young children practicing handwriting start to become more fluent writers. Second, we illustrate how aging affects handwriting by pointing out the increasing departure from the ideal lognormal behavior as the control of the fine motricity begins to decline. Overall, the paper highlights this developmental process of merging toward a lognormal behavior with learning, mastering this behavior to succeed in performing a given task, and then gradually

  3. The lognormal handwriter: learning, performing, and declining

    PubMed Central

    Plamondon, Réjean; O'Reilly, Christian; Rémi, Céline; Duval, Thérésa

    2013-01-01

    The generation of handwriting is a complex neuromotor skill requiring the interaction of many cognitive processes. It aims at producing a message to be imprinted as an ink trace left on a writing medium. The generated trajectory of the pen tip is made up of strokes superimposed over time. The Kinematic Theory of rapid human movements and its family of lognormal models provide analytical representations of these strokes, often considered as the basic unit of handwriting. This paradigm has not only been experimentally confirmed in numerous predictive and physiologically significant tests but it has also been shown to be the ideal mathematical description for the impulse response of a neuromuscular system. This latter demonstration suggests that the lognormality of the velocity patterns can be interpreted as reflecting the behavior of subjects who are in perfect control of their movements. To illustrate this interpretation, we present a short overview of the main concepts behind the Kinematic Theory and briefly describe how its models can be exploited, using various software tools, to investigate these ideal lognormal behaviors. We emphasize that the parameters extracted during various tasks can be used to analyze some underlying processes associated with their realization. To investigate the operational convergence hypothesis, we report on two original studies. First, we focus on the early steps of the motor learning process as seen as a converging behavior toward the production of more precise lognormal patterns as young children practicing handwriting start to become more fluent writers. Second, we illustrate how aging affects handwriting by pointing out the increasing departure from the ideal lognormal behavior as the control of the fine motricity begins to decline. Overall, the paper highlights this developmental process of merging toward a lognormal behavior with learning, mastering this behavior to succeed in performing a given task, and then gradually

  4. Do plasma melatonin concentrations decline with age?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeitzer, J. M.; Daniels, J. E.; Duffy, J. F.; Klerman, E. B.; Shanahan, T. L.; Dijk, D. J.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1999-01-01

    PURPOSE: Numerous reports that secretion of the putative sleep-promoting hormone melatonin declines with age have led to suggestions that melatonin replacement therapy be used to treat sleep problems in older patients. We sought to reassess whether the endogenous circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin concentration changes with age in healthy drug-free adults. METHODS: We analyzed the amplitude of plasma melatonin profiles during a constant routine in 34 healthy drug-free older subjects (20 women and 14 men, aged 65 to 81 years) and compared them with 98 healthy drug-free young men (aged 18 to 30 years). RESULTS: We could detect no significant difference between a healthy and drug-free group of older men and women as compared to one of young men in the endogenous circadian amplitude of the plasma melatonin rhythm, as described by mean 24-hour average melatonin concentration (70 pmol/liter vs 73 pmol/liter, P = 0.97), or the duration (9.3 hours vs 9.1 hours, P = 0.43), mean (162 pmol/liter vs 161 pmol/liter, P = 0.63), or integrated area (85,800 pmol x min/liter vs 86,700 pmol x min/liter, P = 0.66) of the nocturnal peak of plasma melatonin. CONCLUSION: These results do not support the hypothesis that reduction of plasma melatonin concentration is a general characteristic of healthy aging. Should melatonin replacement therapy or melatonin supplementation prove to be clinically useful, we recommend that an assessment of endogenous melatonin be carried out before such treatment is used in older patients.

  5. Do plasma melatonin concentrations decline with age?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeitzer, J. M.; Daniels, J. E.; Duffy, J. F.; Klerman, E. B.; Shanahan, T. L.; Dijk, D. J.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1999-01-01

    PURPOSE: Numerous reports that secretion of the putative sleep-promoting hormone melatonin declines with age have led to suggestions that melatonin replacement therapy be used to treat sleep problems in older patients. We sought to reassess whether the endogenous circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin concentration changes with age in healthy drug-free adults. METHODS: We analyzed the amplitude of plasma melatonin profiles during a constant routine in 34 healthy drug-free older subjects (20 women and 14 men, aged 65 to 81 years) and compared them with 98 healthy drug-free young men (aged 18 to 30 years). RESULTS: We could detect no significant difference between a healthy and drug-free group of older men and women as compared to one of young men in the endogenous circadian amplitude of the plasma melatonin rhythm, as described by mean 24-hour average melatonin concentration (70 pmol/liter vs 73 pmol/liter, P = 0.97), or the duration (9.3 hours vs 9.1 hours, P = 0.43), mean (162 pmol/liter vs 161 pmol/liter, P = 0.63), or integrated area (85,800 pmol x min/liter vs 86,700 pmol x min/liter, P = 0.66) of the nocturnal peak of plasma melatonin. CONCLUSION: These results do not support the hypothesis that reduction of plasma melatonin concentration is a general characteristic of healthy aging. Should melatonin replacement therapy or melatonin supplementation prove to be clinically useful, we recommend that an assessment of endogenous melatonin be carried out before such treatment is used in older patients.

  6. Conifer Decline and Mortality in Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kharuk, V.; Im, S.; Ranson, K.

    2015-12-01

    "Dark needle conifer" (DNC: Abies sibirica, Pinus sibirica and Picea obovata) decline and mortality increase were documented in Russia during recent decades. Here we analyzed causes and scale of Siberian pine and fir mortality in Altai-Sayan and Baikal Lake Regions and West Siberian Plane based on in situdata and remote sensing (QuickBird, Landsat, GRACE). Geographically, mortality began on the margins of the DNC range (i.e., within the forest-steppe and conifer-broadleaf ecotones) and on terrain features with maximal water stress risk (narrow-shaped hilltops, convex steep south facing slopes, shallow well-drained soils). Within ridges, mortality occurred mainly along mountain passes, where stands faced drying winds. Regularly mortality was observed to decrease with elevation increase with the exception of Baikal Lake Mountains, where it was minimal near the lake shore and increased with elevation (up to about 1000 m a.s.l.). Siberian pine and fir mortality followed a drying trend with consecutive droughts since the 1980s. Dendrochronology analysis showed that mortality was correlated with vapor pressure deficit increase, drought index, soil moisture decrease and occurrence of late frosts. In Baikal region Siberian pine mortality correlated with Baikal watershed meteorological variables. An impact of previous year climate conditions on the current growth was found (r2 = 0.6). Thus, water-stressed trees became sensitive to bark beetles and fungi impact (including Polygraphus proximus and Heterobasidion annosum). At present, an increase in mortality is observed within the majority of DNC range. Results obtained also showed a primary role of water stress in that phenomenon with a secondary role of bark beetles and fungi attacks. In future climate with increased drought severity and frequency Siberian pine and fir will partly disappear from its current range, and will be substituted by drought-tolerant species (e.g., Pinus silvestris, Larix sibirica).

  7. Arctic greening from warming promotes declines in caribou populations

    PubMed Central

    Fauchald, Per; Park, Taejin; Tømmervik, Hans; Myneni, Ranga; Hausner, Vera Helene

    2017-01-01

    The migratory tundra caribou herds in North America follow decadal population cycles, and browsing from abundant caribou could be expected to counteract the current climate-driven expansion of shrubs in the circumpolar tundra biome. We demonstrate that the sea ice cover in the Arctic Ocean has provided a strong signal for climate-induced changes on the adjacent caribou summer ranges, outperforming other climate indices in explaining the caribou-plant dynamics. We found no evidence of a negative effect of caribou abundance on vegetation biomass. On the contrary, we found a strong bottom-up effect in which a warmer climate related to diminishing sea ice has increased the plant biomass on the summer pastures, along with a paradoxical decline in caribou populations. This result suggests that this climate-induced greening has been accompanied by a deterioration of pasture quality. The shrub expansion in Arctic North America involves plant species with strong antibrowsing defenses. Our results might therefore be an early signal of a climate-driven shift in the caribou-plant interaction from a system with low plant biomass modulated by cyclic caribou populations to a system dominated by nonedible shrubs and diminishing herds of migratory caribou. PMID:28508037

  8. Multivariable network associated with cognitive decline and dementia.

    PubMed

    Licastro, Federico; Porcellini, Elisa; Chiappelli, Martina; Forti, Paola; Buscema, Massimo; Ravaglia, Giovanni; Grossi, Enzo

    2010-02-01

    Data mining of a large data base from the population longitudinal study named "The Conselice Study" has been the focus of the present investigation. Initially, 65 years old or older participants were interviewed, underwent medical and cognitive examination, and were followed up for 5 years: 937 subjects completed the follow-up. Relationships of 35 genetic and/or phenotypic factors with incident cognitive decline and dementia were investigated. The new mathematical approach, called the Auto Contractive Map (AutoCM), was able to show the differential importance of each variables. This new variable processing created a semantic connectivity map that: (a) preserved non-linear associations; (b) showed connection schemes; (c) captured the complex dynamics of adaptive interactions. This method, based on an artificial adaptive system, was able to define the association strength of each variable with all the others. Few variables resulted to be aggregation points and were considered as major biological hubs. Three hubs were identified in the hydroxyl-methyl-gutaryl-CoA reductase (HMGCR) enzyme, plasma cholesterol levels and age. Gene variants and cognate phenotypic variables showed differential degrees of relevance to brain aging and dementia. This data analysis method was compared with another mathematical model called mutual information relevance network and results are presented and discussed.

  9. Ohia forest decline: its spread and severity in Hawaii

    Treesearch

    Edwin Q. P. Petteys; Robert E. Burgan; Robert E. Nelson

    1975-01-01

    Ohia forest decline–its severity and rate of spread–was studied by aerial photographic techniques on a 197,000-acre (80,000-ha) portion of the island of Hawaii. In 1954, only 300 acres (121 ha) showed signs of severe decline; by 1972, the acreage of severely affected forest had increased to 85,200 acres (34,480 ha). Rate of decline and current severity were related to...

  10. Cognitive decline in Huntington's disease expansion gene carriers.

    PubMed

    Baake, Verena; Reijntjes, Robert H A M; Dumas, Eve M; Thompson, Jennifer C; Roos, Raymund A C

    2017-10-01

    In Huntington's Disease (HD) cognitive decline can occur before unequivocal motor signs become apparent. As cognitive decline often starts early in the course of the disease and has a progressive nature over time, cognition can be regarded as a key target for symptomatic treatment. The specific progressive profile of cognitive decline over time is unknown. The aim of this study is to quantify the progression of cognitive decline across all HD stages, from pre-motormanifest to advanced HD, and to investigate if CAG length mediates cognitive decline. In the European REGISTRY study 2669 HD expansion gene carriers underwent annual cognitive assessment. General linear mixed models were used to model the cognitive decline for each cognitive task across all disease stages. Additionally, a model was developed to evaluate the cognitive decline based on CAG length and age rather than disease stage. There was significant cognitive decline on all administered tasks throughout pre-motormanifest (close to estimated disease onset) participants and the subsequent motormanifest participants from stage 1 to stage 4. Performance on the Stroop Word and Stroop Color tests additionally declined significantly across the two pre-motormanifest groups: far and close to estimated disease onset. The evaluation of cognition performance in relation to CAG length and age revealed a more rapid cognitive decline in participants with longer CAG length than participants with shorter CAG length over time. Cognitive performance already shows decline in pre-motormanifest HD gene expansion carriers and gradually worsens to late stage HD. HD gene expansion carriers with certain CAG length have their own cognitive profile, i.e., longer CAG length is associated with more rapid decline. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Longitudinal Change of Biomarkers in Cognitive Decline

    PubMed Central

    Lo, Raymond Y.; Hubbard, Alan E.; Shaw, Leslie M.; Trojanowski, John Q.; Petersen, Ronald C.; Aisen, Paul S.; Weiner, Michael W.; Jagust, William J.

    2017-01-01

    Objective To delineate the trajectories of Aβ42 level in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), fludeoxyglucose F18 (FDG) uptake using positron emission tomography, and hippocampal volume using magnetic resonance imaging and their relative associations with cognitive change at different stages in aging and Alzheimer disease (AD). Design Cohort study. Setting The 59 study sites for the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative. Participants A total of 819 participants 55 to 90 years of age with normal cognition, mild cognitive impairment, and AD who were followed up during the period from 2005 to 2007. Main Outcome Measures Rates of change in level of Aβ42 in CSF, FDG uptake, hippocampal volume, and the Alzheimer Disease’s Assessment Scale–cognitive subscale score during up to 36 months of follow-up by diagnostic group as well as prediction of cognitive change by each biomarker. Results Reductions in the level of Aβ42 in CSF were numerically greater in participants with normal cognition than in participants with mild cognitive impairment or AD; whereas both glucose metabolic decline and hippocampal atrophy were significantly slower in participants with normal cognition than in participants with mild cognitive impairment or AD. Positive APOE4 status accelerated hippocampal atrophic changes in participants with mild cognitive impairment or AD, but did not modify rates of change in level of Aβ42 in CSF or FDG uptake. The Alzheimer Disease’s Assessment Scale–cognitive subscale scores were related only to the baseline level of Aβ42 in CSF and the baseline FDG uptake in participants with normal cognition, which were about equally associated with change in FDG uptake and hippocampal volume in participants with mild cognitive impairment and best modeled by change in FDG uptake in participants with AD. Conclusion Trajectories of Aβ42 level in CSF, FDG uptake, and hippocampal volume vary across different cognitive stages. The longitudinal patterns support a hypothetical

  12. Community-level education accelerates the cultural evolution of fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2014-03-22

    Explaining why fertility declines as populations modernize is a profound theoretical challenge. It remains unclear whether the fundamental drivers are economic or cultural in nature. Cultural evolutionary theory suggests that community-level characteristics, for example average education, can alter how low-fertility preferences are transmitted and adopted. These assumptions have not been empirically tested. Here, we show that community-level education accelerates fertility decline in a way that is neither predicted by individual characteristics, nor by the level of economic modernization in a population. In 22 high-fertility communities in Poland, fertility converged on a smaller family size as average education in the community increased-indeed community-level education had a larger impact on fertility decline than did individual education. This convergence was not driven by educational levels being more homogeneous, but by less educated women having fewer children than expected, and more highly educated social networks, when living among more highly educated neighbours. The average level of education in a community may influence the social partners women interact with, both within and beyond their immediate social environments, altering the reproductive norms they are exposed to. Given a critical mass of highly educated women, less educated neighbours may adopt their reproductive behaviour, accelerating the pace of demographic transition. Individual characteristics alone cannot capture these dynamics and studies relying solely on them may systematically underestimate the importance of cultural transmission in driving fertility declines. Our results are inconsistent with a purely individualistic, rational-actor model of fertility decline and suggest that optimization of reproduction is partly driven by cultural dynamics beyond the individual.

  13. Community-level education accelerates the cultural evolution of fertility decline

    PubMed Central

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2014-01-01

    Explaining why fertility declines as populations modernize is a profound theoretical challenge. It remains unclear whether the fundamental drivers are economic or cultural in nature. Cultural evolutionary theory suggests that community-level characteristics, for example average education, can alter how low-fertility preferences are transmitted and adopted. These assumptions have not been empirically tested. Here, we show that community-level education accelerates fertility decline in a way that is neither predicted by individual characteristics, nor by the level of economic modernization in a population. In 22 high-fertility communities in Poland, fertility converged on a smaller family size as average education in the community increased—indeed community-level education had a larger impact on fertility decline than did individual education. This convergence was not driven by educational levels being more homogeneous, but by less educated women having fewer children than expected, and more highly educated social networks, when living among more highly educated neighbours. The average level of education in a community may influence the social partners women interact with, both within and beyond their immediate social environments, altering the reproductive norms they are exposed to. Given a critical mass of highly educated women, less educated neighbours may adopt their reproductive behaviour, accelerating the pace of demographic transition. Individual characteristics alone cannot capture these dynamics and studies relying solely on them may systematically underestimate the importance of cultural transmission in driving fertility declines. Our results are inconsistent with a purely individualistic, rational-actor model of fertility decline and suggest that optimization of reproduction is partly driven by cultural dynamics beyond the individual. PMID:24500166

  14. Decline and depletion rates of oil production: a comprehensive investigation.

    PubMed

    Höök, Mikael; Davidsson, Simon; Johansson, Sheshti; Tang, Xu

    2014-01-13

    Two of the most fundamental concepts in the current debate about future oil supply are oilfield decline rates and depletion rates. These concepts are related, but not identical. This paper clarifies the definitions of these concepts, summarizes the underlying theory and empirically estimates decline and depletion rates for different categories of oilfield. A database of 880 post-peak fields is analysed to determine typical depletion levels, depletion rates and decline rates. This demonstrates that the size of oilfields has a significant influence on decline and depletion rates, with generally high values for small fields and comparatively low values for larger fields. These empirical findings have important implications for oil supply forecasting.

  15. DDT residues and declining reproduction in the Bermuda petrel.

    PubMed

    Wurster, C F; Wingate, D B

    1968-03-01

    Residues of DDT [1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl)ethane] averaging 6.44 parts per million in eggs and chicks of the carnivorous Bermuda petrel indicate widespread contamination of an oceanic food chain that is remote from applications of DDT. Reproduction by the petrel has declined during the last 10 years at the annual rate of 3.25 percent; if the decline continues, reproduction will fail completely by 1978. Concentrations of residues are similar to those in certain terrestrial carnivorous birds whose productivity is also declining. Various considerations implicate contamination by insecticides as a probable major cause of the decline.

  16. Longitudinal lung function declines among California flavoring manufacturing workers.

    PubMed

    Kreiss, Kathleen; Fedan, Kathleen B; Nasrullah, Muazzam; Kim, Thomas J; Materna, Barbara L; Prudhomme, Janice C; Enright, Paul L

    2012-08-01

    The California Department of Public Health received serial spirometry data for flavoring manufacturing workers at 20 companies at risk of bronchiolitis obliterans. We graded spirometry quality; identified individual workers with excessive decline in forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV(1)) using relative longitudinal limits of decline based on 4% average within-person variability; and analyzed declines by occupational risk factors. The quality of 1,696 spirometry tests from 724 workers varied by 17 providers, with poorer quality from commercial providers. Of 416 workers with at least two tests, 40 (9.6%) had abnormal FEV(1) decline. Of 289 workers with high quality spirometry, 21 (7.3%) had abnormal decline. Only one of the 21 had airways obstruction. Abnormal FEV(1) decline rates (per person-month) were greater among workers at companies using ≥800 lbs/year diacetyl than at companies using lesser amounts. Abnormal FEV(1) decline rates were greater at companies previously having four-person clusters of spirometric obstruction than at companies with no or only one worker with obstruction. Spirometric surveillance of flavoring workers can identify individual workers with an abnormal FEV(1) decline for preventive intervention, even when the FEV(1) itself remains within the normal range. Good quality spirometry and classification of abnormal with relative longitudinal limit of decline minimize misclassification of possible work-related health effects. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Declinations in the Almagest: accuracy, epoch, and observers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, John C.; Zimmer, Peter; Jones, Patricia B.

    2014-11-01

    Almagest declinations attributed to Timocharis, Aristyllos, Hipparchus, and Ptolemy are investigated through comparisons of the reported declinations with the declinations computed from modern positions translated to the earlier epochs. Consistent results indicate an observational accuracy of ≈ 0.1° and epochs of: Timocharis, c. 298 BC; Aristyllos, c. 256 BC, and Hipparchus, c. 128 BC.The ≈ 42-year difference between Aristyllos and Timocharis is confirmed to be statistically significant. The declinations attributed to Ptolemy were likely two distinct groups—observations taken c. AD 57 and observations taken c. AD 128. The later observations could have been taken by Ptolemy himself.

  18. The role of predation in the decline and extirpation of woodland caribou.

    PubMed

    Wittmer, Heiko U; Sinclair, Anthony R E; McLellan, Bruce N

    2005-06-01

    To select appropriate recovery strategies for endangered populations, we must understand the dynamics of small populations and distinguish between the possible causes that drive such populations to low numbers. It has been suggested that the pattern of population decline may be inversely density-dependent with population growth rates decreasing as populations become very small; however, empirical evidence of such accelerated declines at low densities is rare. Here we analyzed the pattern of decline of a threatened population of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in British Columbia, Canada. Using information on the instantaneous rate of increase relative to caribou density in suitable winter foraging habitat, as well as on pregnancy rates and on causes and temporal distribution of mortalities from a sample of 349 radiocollared animals from 15 subpopulations, we tested 3 hypothesized causes of decline: (a) food regulation caused by loss of suitable winter foraging habitat, (b) predation-sensitive foraging caused by loss of suitable winter foraging habitat and (c) predation with caribou being secondary prey. Population sizes of caribou subpopulations ranged from < 5 to > 500 individuals. Our results showed that the rates of increase of these subpopulations varied from -0.1871 to 0.0496 with smaller subpopulations declining faster than larger subpopulations. Rates of increase were positively related to the density of caribou in suitable winter foraging habitat. Pregnancy rates averaged 92.4% +/-2.24 and did not differ among subpopulations. In addition, we found predation to be the primary cause of mortality in 11 of 13 subpopulations with known causes of mortality and predation predominantly occurred during summer. These results are consistent with predictions that caribou subpopulations are declining as a consequence of increased predation. Recovery of these woodland caribou will thus require a multispecies perspective and an appreciation for the influence

  19. Modeling climate impact on an emerging disease, the Phytophthora alni-induced alder decline.

    PubMed

    Aguayo, Jaime; Elegbede, Fabrice; Husson, Claude; Saintonge, François-Xavier; Marçais, Benoît

    2014-10-01

    Alder decline caused by Phytophthora alni is one of the most important emerging diseases in natural ecosystems in Europe, where it has threatened riparian ecosystems for the past 20 years. Environmental factors, such as mean site temperature and soil characteristics, play an important role in the occurrence of the disease. The objective of the present work was to model and forecast the effect of environment on the severity of alder Phytophthora outbreaks, and to determine whether recent climate change might explain the disease emergence. Two alder sites networks in NE and SW France were surveyed to assess the crown health of trees; the oomycete soil inoculum was also monitored in the NE network. The main factors explaining the temporal annual variation in alder crown decline or crown recovery were the mean previous winter and previous summer temperatures. Both low winter temperatures and high summer temperatures were unfavorable to the disease. Cold winters promoted tree recovery because of poor survival of the pathogen, while hot summer temperature limited the incidence of tree decline. An SIS model explaining the dynamics of the P. alni-induced alder decline was developed using the data of the NE site network and validated using the SW site network. This model was then used to simulate the frequency of declining alder over time with historical climate data. The last 40 years' weather conditions have been generally favorable to the establishment of the disease, indicating that others factors may be implicated in its emergence. The model, however, showed that the climate of SW France was much more favorable for the disease than that of the Northeast, because it seldom limited the overwintering of the pathogen. Depending on the European area, climate change could either enhance or decrease the severity of the alder decline. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Clinical workout for the early detection of cognitive decline and dementia.

    PubMed

    Tsolaki, M

    2014-11-01

    Aging is the major risk factor for the development of human neurodegenerative maladies such as Alzheimer's, Huntington's and Parkinson's diseases (PDs) and prion disorders, all of which stem from toxic protein aggregation. All of these diseases are correlated with cognitive decline. Cognitive Decline is a dynamic state from normal cognition of aging to dementia. According to the original criteria for Alzheimer's Disease (AD) (1984), a clinical diagnosis was possible only when someone was already demented. The prevalence rates of Cognitive Decline (mild cognitive impairment plus dementia) are very high now and will be higher in future because of the increasing survival time of people. Many neurological and psychiatric diseases are correlated with cognitive decline. Diagnosis of cognitive decline is mostly clinical (clinical criteria), but there are multiple biomarkers that could help us mostly in research programs such as short or long, paper and pencil or computerized neuropsychological batteries for cognition, activities of daily living and behavior, electroencephalograph, event-related potentials, and imaging-structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and functional (fMRI, Pittsburgh bound positron emission tomography, FDG-PET, single photon emission computerized tomography and imaging of tau pathology)-cerebrospinal fluid proteins (Abeta, tau and phospho-tau in AD and α-synuclein (αSyn) for PD). Blood biomarkers need more studies to confirm their usefulness. Genetic markers are also studied but until now are not used in clinical praxis. Finally, in everyday clinical praxis and in research workout for early detection of cognitive decline, the combination of biomarkers is useful.

  1. Reconciling divergent interpretations of quaking aspen decline on the northern Colorado Front Range.

    PubMed

    Kashian, Daniel M; Romme, William H; Regan, Claudia M

    2007-07-01

    Ecologists have debated over the past 65 years whether quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) has or has not declined in abundance, vigor, or regeneration in western North America. Many studies have provided divergent interpretations of the condition of aspen forests, leading to difficulty in translating this ecological information into management recommendations. To reconcile these contrasting conclusions and to test the hypothesis that multiple types of aspen decline and persistence occur simultaneously on heterogeneous landscapes, we assessed 91 aspen stands across the northern Colorado Front Range to determine the range of ecological conditions that underlie aspen decline or persistence. Approximately 15% of aspen forest area in our sample exhibited dieback of mature stems coupled with a lack of young trees indicative of declining stands, most often at lower elevations where elk browsing is heavy and chronic, and where effects of fire exclusion have been most significant. However, 52% of the area sampled had multiple cohorts indicative of self-replacing or persistent stands. Conifer dominance was increasing in over 33% of all aspen forest area sampled, most often at high elevations among lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia Englem. ex Wats.) forests. Reconstructions of relative basal area and density of aspen and lodgepole pine in these stands suggest cyclical dominance of these species, where conifers gradually replace aspen over long fire intervals, and aspen vigorously re-establish following stand-replacing fires. The diversity of ecological contexts across the northern Colorado Front Range creates a variety of aspen dynamics leading to decline or persistence, and no single trend describes the general condition of aspen forests in appropriate detail for managers. Active management may be useful in preserving individual stands at fine scales, but management prescriptions should reflect specific drivers of decline in these stands.

  2. Intimacy, Intentional Metacommunication and Second Order Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perlmutter, Morton S.; Hatfield, Elaine

    1980-01-01

    Argues that theorists have ignored insights of family therapists such as Bateson, Boszormenyi-Nagy and Spark, Satir, and Watzlawick and Weakland. Family therapy provides unique insights into the nature of intimacy. Existing case material adds to descriptions of intimate relations. Examples of how systems theorists could look at intimacy supplement…

  3. Intimacy, Intentional Metacommunication and Second Order Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perlmutter, Morton S.; Hatfield, Elaine

    1980-01-01

    Argues that theorists have ignored insights of family therapists such as Bateson, Boszormenyi-Nagy and Spark, Satir, and Watzlawick and Weakland. Family therapy provides unique insights into the nature of intimacy. Existing case material adds to descriptions of intimate relations. Examples of how systems theorists could look at intimacy supplement…

  4. Analysis of pelagic species decline in the upper San Francisco Estuary using multivariate autoregressive modeling (MAR)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mac Nally, Ralph; Thomson, James R.; Kimmerer, Wim J.; Feyrer, Frederick; Newman, Ken B.; Sih, Andy; Bennett, William A.; Brown, Larry; Fleishman, Erica; Culberson, Steven D.; Castillo, Gonzalo

    2010-01-01

    Four species of pelagic fish of particular management concern in the upper San Francisco Estuary, California, USA, have declined precipitously since ca. 2002: delta smelt (Hypomesus transpacificus), longfin smelt (Spirinchus thaleichthys), striped bass (Morone saxatilis), and threadfin shad (Dorosoma petenense). The estuary has been monitored since the late 1960s with extensive collection of data on the fishes, their pelagic prey, phytoplankton biomass, invasive species, and physical factors. We used multivariate autoregressive (MAR) modeling to discern the main factors responsible for the declines. An expert-elicited model was built to describe the system. Fifty-four relationships were built into the model, only one of which was of uncertain direction a priori. Twenty-eight of the proposed relationships were strongly supported by or consistent with the data, while 26 were close to zero (not supported by the data but not contrary to expectations). The position of the 2‰ isohaline (a measure of the physical response of the estuary to freshwater flow) and increased water clarity over the period of analyses were two factors affecting multiple declining taxa (including fishes and the fishes' main zooplankton prey). Our results were relatively robust with respect to the form of stock–recruitment model used and to inclusion of subsidiary covariates but may be enhanced by using detailed state–space models that describe more fully the life-history dynamics of the declining species.

  5. AMPHIBIAN DECLINE, ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION AND LOCAL POPULATION ADAPTATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibian population declines have been noted on both local and global scales. Causes for these declines are unknown although many hypotheses have been offered. In areas adjacent to human development, loss of habitat is a fairly well accepted cause. However in isolated, seemingl...

  6. Developmental decline in height growth in Douglas-fir.

    Treesearch

    Barbara J. Bond; Nicole M. Czarnomski; Clifton Cooper; Michael E. Day; Michael S. Greenwood

    2007-01-01

    The characteristic decline in height growth that occurs over a tree's lifespan is often called "age-related decline." But is the reduction in height growth in aging trees a function of age or of size? We grafted shoot tips across different ages and sizes of Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) trees to determine whether...

  7. Assessment of Loblolly Pine Decline in Central Alabama

    Treesearch

    Nolan J. Hess; William J. Otrosina; Emily A. Carter; Jim R. Steinman; John P. Jones; Lori G. Eckhardt; Ann M. Weber; Charles H. Walkinshaw

    2002-01-01

    Loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) decline has been prevalent on upland sites of central Alabama since the 1960's. The purpose of this study was to compare Forest Health Monitoring (FHM) standards and protocols with root health evaluations relative to crown, stem, and site measurements. Thirty-nine 1/6 acre plots were established on loblolly decline...

  8. The Decline of the Adult School Movement between the Wars

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freeman, Mark

    2010-01-01

    This article considers the decline of the adult school movement, one of the largest voluntary movements in the history of adult education, and critically examines some of the reasons that have been used to explain it. It explores various features of the decline, using records of selected adult schools, and discussing variations by region and…

  9. Management of anthurium decline caused by Radopholus similis

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Anthurium decline is a chronic problem in anthurium production in Hawaii. Anthurium decline has worsened with the removal of fenamiphos from the market. Growers need environmentally sound post-plant treatments to augment preplant management tactics. Avermectin (Avid, monthly), thiophanate-methyl (Cl...

  10. Aluminum-induced calcium deficiency syndrome in declining red spruce

    Treesearch

    Walter C. Shortle; Kevin T. Smith

    1988-01-01

    Prolonged suppression of cambial growth has apparently caused a decline in radial growth in many mature red spruce, Picea rubens. Surveys indicate that this decline occurs in trees throughout the natural range of red spruce and is independent of elevation, tree size, and age class. In addition, crowns of mature red spruce at high elevations across...

  11. Declining Trends in Student Performance in Lower Secondary Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wijsman, Lindy A.; Warrens, Matthijs J.; Saab, Nadira; van Driel, Jan H.; Westenberg, P. Michiel

    2016-01-01

    Student performance is related to motivation to learn. As motivation generally declines during lower secondary education, one might expect performance to decline as well during this period. Though, until now, it has been unclear whether this pattern exists. In the present study, we examined student performance during the early years of secondary…

  12. Did the Decline in Social Connections Depress Americans' Happiness?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolini, Stefano; Bilancini, Ennio; Pugno, Maurizio

    2013-01-01

    During the last 30 years US citizens experienced, on average, a decline in reported happiness, social connections, and confidence in institutions. We show that a remarkable portion of the decrease in happiness is predicted by the decline in social connections and confidence in institutions. We carry out our investigation in three steps. First, we…

  13. Decline of Ohia (Metrosideros polymorpha) in Hawaii: a review

    Treesearch

    Charles S. Hodges; Ken T. Adee; John D. Stein; Hulton B. Wood; Robert D. Doty

    1986-01-01

    Portions of the ohia (Metrosideros polymorpha) forests on the windward slopes of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea on the island of Hawaii began dying in 1952. Little mortality has occurred since 1972. About 50,000 ha are affected by the decline. Individual trees exhibit several symptoms, from slow progressive dieback to rapid death. Seven types of decline...

  14. AMPHIBIAN DECLINE, ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION AND LOCAL POPULATION ADAPTATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibian population declines have been noted on both local and global scales. Causes for these declines are unknown although many hypotheses have been offered. In areas adjacent to human development, loss of habitat is a fairly well accepted cause. However in isolated, seemingl...

  15. FACTORS IMPLICATED IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES IN THE UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study identified the factors responsible for the decline of native amphibians in the U.S. The type of land use, the introduction of exotic animal species, and chemical contamination were identified as the most likely causes of decline.

  16. 34 CFR 303.405 - Parent right to decline service.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 34 Education 2 2011-07-01 2010-07-01 true Parent right to decline service. 303.405 Section 303.405... TODDLERS WITH DISABILITIES Procedural Safeguards General § 303.405 Parent right to decline service. The parents of a child eligible under this part may determine whether they, their child, or other...

  17. 34 CFR 303.405 - Parent right to decline service.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 34 Education 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Parent right to decline service. 303.405 Section 303... TODDLERS WITH DISABILITIES Procedural Safeguards General § 303.405 Parent right to decline service. The parents of a child eligible under this part may determine whether they, their child, or other...

  18. Globalization and the price decline of illicit drugs.

    PubMed

    Costa Storti, Cláudia; De Grauwe, Paul

    2009-01-01

    This study aims at understanding the mechanisms underlying the dramatic decline of the retail prices of major drugs like cocaine and heroin during the past two decades. It also aims at analysing the implications of this decline for drug policies. We use a theoretical model to identify the possible causes of this price decline. This allows us to formulate the hypothesis that the major driving force behind the price decline is a reduction of the intermediation margin (the difference between the retail and producer prices). We also develop the hypothesis that globalization has been an important factor behind the decline of the intermediation margin. We then analyse the statistical information to test these hypotheses. We find that the decline in the retail prices of drugs is related to the strong decline in the intermediation margin in the drug business, and that globalization is the main driving force behind this phenomenon. Globalization has done so by increasing the efficiency of the distribution of drugs, by reducing the risk premium involved in dealing with drugs, and by increasing the degree of competition in the drug markets. We conclude that the cocaine and heroin price declines were due to a sharp fall in the intermediation margin, which was probably influenced by globalization. This phenomenon might have a strong impact on the effectiveness of drug policies, increasing the relative effectiveness of policies aiming at reducing the demand of drugs.

  19. POPULATION DECLINES OF THE PUERTO RICAN VIREO IN GUANICA FOREST.

    Treesearch

    JOHN FAABORG; KATE M. DUGGER; WAYNE J. ARENDT; BETHANY L. WOODWORTH; MICHAEL E. BALTZ

    1997-01-01

    Abundance of the Puerto Rican Vireo (Vireo Zutimeri) in Guanica Forest, Puerto Rico, has declined gradually over the period 1973-1996 as determined by constant effort mist netting. Concurrent studies of breeding vireos show low nesting success, primarily due to parasitism by Shiny Cowbirds (Molothrus bonariensis). This decline may reflect the rather recent entry of the...

  20. Does Child Labor Decline with Improving Economic Status?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edmonds, Eric V.

    2005-01-01

    The rapid economic growth of Vietnam provides an interesting insight into the sharp decline in child labor. A study of the rising economic status of the population across Vietnam shows that children returned to school or stopped working as their family incomes grew. The decline in child labor is steep in poor households as they emerged from…

  1. Differential Ability Decline and Its Remediation in Late Adulthood.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaie, K. Warner; Willis, Sherry L.

    A major issue concerning adult intellectual development is whether intellectual decline in late adulthood is uniform or ability-specific. Differential patterns of ability decline were analyzed by comparing data on longitudinal age change over the age range from 53 to 81 years from two successive 14-year periods (1956-1970 and 1970-1984). The…

  2. Managing School Districts in a Decade of Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hathaway, Walter E.

    Due to enrollment decline, reductions in federal support, and declining state support because of a constricted economy, growing inflation, expanding government and legal requirements, and the loss of public confidence in education, the Portland School District (Oregon) developed a short-term contingency budget planning process in fiscal 1980-81 to…

  3. Did the Decline in Social Connections Depress Americans' Happiness?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolini, Stefano; Bilancini, Ennio; Pugno, Maurizio

    2013-01-01

    During the last 30 years US citizens experienced, on average, a decline in reported happiness, social connections, and confidence in institutions. We show that a remarkable portion of the decrease in happiness is predicted by the decline in social connections and confidence in institutions. We carry out our investigation in three steps. First, we…

  4. Does Child Labor Decline with Improving Economic Status?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edmonds, Eric V.

    2005-01-01

    The rapid economic growth of Vietnam provides an interesting insight into the sharp decline in child labor. A study of the rising economic status of the population across Vietnam shows that children returned to school or stopped working as their family incomes grew. The decline in child labor is steep in poor households as they emerged from…

  5. Do improvement harvests mitigate oak decline in Missouri Ozark forests?

    Treesearch

    John P. Dwyer; John M. Kabrick; James Wetteroff

    2007-01-01

    Since the 1970s, oak decline has been a chronic problem throughout the oak-dominated forests of the Missouri Ozarks. Prior research indicates that environmental stress, particularly drought, leads to the onset of oak decline. Consequently, some scientists and managers have advocated thinning and intermediate harvesting to maintain or improve tree vigor and growth,...

  6. State of pine decline in the southeastern United States

    Treesearch

    Lori Eckhardt; Mary Anne Sword Sayer; Don Imm

    2010-01-01

    Pine decline is an emerging forest health issue in the southeastern United States. Observations suggest pine decline is caused by environmental stress arising from competition, weather, insects and fungi, anthropogenic disturbances, and previous management. The problem is most severe for loblolly pine on sites that historically supported longleaf pine, are highly...

  7. Is Induced Abortion Really Declining in Armenia?

    PubMed

    Jilozian, Ann; Agadjanian, Victor

    2016-06-01

    As in other post-Soviet settings, induced abortion has been widely used in Armenia. However, recent national survey data point to a substantial drop in abortion rates with no commensurate increase in modern contraceptive prevalence and no change in fertility levels. We use data from in-depth interviews with women of reproductive age and health providers in rural Armenia to explore possible underreporting of both contraceptive use and abortion. While we find no evidence that women understate their use of modern contraception, the analysis suggests that induced abortion might indeed be underreported. The potential for underreporting is particularly high for sex-selective abortions, for which there is growing public backlash, and medical abortion, a practice that is typically self-administered outside any professional supervision. Possible underreporting of induced abortion calls for refinement of both abortion registration and relevant survey instruments. Better measurement of abortion dynamics is necessary for successful promotion of effective modern contraceptive methods and reduction of unsafe abortion practices.

  8. Declining coral calcification on the Great Barrier Reef.

    PubMed

    De'ath, Glenn; Lough, Janice M; Fabricius, Katharina E

    2009-01-02

    Reef-building corals are under increasing physiological stress from a changing climate and ocean absorption of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide. We investigated 328 colonies of massive Porites corals from 69 reefs of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) in Australia. Their skeletal records show that throughout the GBR, calcification has declined by 14.2% since 1990, predominantly because extension (linear growth) has declined by 13.3%. The data suggest that such a severe and sudden decline in calcification is unprecedented in at least the past 400 years. Calcification increases linearly with increasing large-scale sea surface temperature but responds nonlinearly to annual temperature anomalies. The causes of the decline remain unknown; however, this study suggests that increasing temperature stress and a declining saturation state of seawater aragonite may be diminishing the ability of GBR corals to deposit calcium carbonate.

  9. Declining Coral Calcification on the Great Barrier Reef

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De'ath, Glenn; Lough, Janice M.; Fabricius, Katharina E.

    2009-01-01

    Reef-building corals are under increasing physiological stress from a changing climate and ocean absorption of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide. We investigated 328 colonies of massive Porites corals from 69 reefs of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) in Australia. Their skeletal records show that throughout the GBR, calcification has declined by 14.2% since 1990, predominantly because extension (linear growth) has declined by 13.3%. The data suggest that such a severe and sudden decline in calcification is unprecedented in at least the past 400 years. Calcification increases linearly with increasing large-scale sea surface temperature but responds nonlinearly to annual temperature anomalies. The causes of the decline remain unknown; however, this study suggests that increasing temperature stress and a declining saturation state of seawater aragonite may be diminishing the ability of GBR corals to deposit calcium carbonate.

  10. Recent fertility declines in China and India: a comparative view.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, P M; Rani, S

    1995-12-01

    This paper compares fertility transitions in China and parts of India. It is argued that China experienced a more rapid and more "impressive" decline than that of India. Socioeconomic conditions in China were more conducive to fertility decline. Kerala State in India experienced a similar decline as China but at a slower pace. The birth control campaign in China is credited with an important role in speeding the transition. It is posited that the political and administrative system and economic conditions in India are not compatible with the Chinese style program strategies. Both countries had similar fertility levels in the immediate post-revolutionary period. The most rapid decline occurred during the 1970s in China. The fertility transition was almost completed by 1981. In India, the total fertility rate (TFR) declined by only 1 point between the 1950s and 1981. In China TFR declined over 3 points during 1970-81. 76.7% of the decline in China during 1970-81 is attributed to a marked decline in marital fertility in all age groups, with the exception of ages 15-19 years. The decline in India is attributed to the decline in marital fertility. Female age at marriage rose in India, but less "impressively." In 1981 the mean age at marriage in India was 18.4 years, but it was 22.8 years in China. Marital fertility among women aged older than 30 years was considerably lower in China. Both countries experienced an increase in literacy, but in China the level of literacy was much greater. Both countries faced food shortages, but China improved food availability and calorie consumption per capita. Health services also improved in both countries, but the Chinese system of "barefoot" doctors brought services with easier reach of rural populations. Political structures differed in their dominance and organization. Family planning programs were introduced earlier in India, but prevalence was 64.4% in China in 1981 and about 22% in India.

  11. Demographic, ecological, and physiological responses of ringed seals to an abrupt decline in sea ice availability

    PubMed Central

    Young, Brent G.; Yurkowski, David J.; Anderson, Randi; Willing, Cornelia; Nielsen, Ole

    2017-01-01

    To assess whether demographic declines of Arctic species at the southern limit of their range will be gradual or punctuated, we compared large-scale environmental patterns including sea ice dynamics to ringed seal (Pusa hispida) reproduction, body condition, recruitment, and stress in Hudson Bay from 2003 to 2013. Aerial surveys suggested a gradual decline in seal density from 1995 to 2013, with the lowest density occurring in 2013. Body condition decreased and stress (cortisol) increased over time in relation to longer open water periods. The 2010 open water period in Hudson Bay coincided with extremes in large-scale atmospheric patterns (North Atlantic Oscillation, Arctic Oscillation, El Nino-Southern Oscillation) resulting in the earliest spring breakup and the latest ice formation on record. The warming event was coincident with high stress level, low ovulation rate, low pregnancy rate, few pups in the Inuit harvest, and observations of sick seals. Results provide evidence of changes in the condition of Arctic marine mammals in relation to climate mediated sea ice dynamics. We conclude that although negative demographic responses of Hudson Bay seals are occurring gradually with diminishing sea ice, a recent episodic environmental event played a significant role in a punctuated population decline. PMID:28168119

  12. A niche model to predict Microcystis bloom decline in Chaohu Lake, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhicong; Li, Zhongjie; Li, Dunhai

    2012-07-01

    Cyanobacterial blooms occur frequently in lakes due to eutrophication. Although a number of models have been proposed to forecast algal blooms, a good and applicable method is still lacking. This study explored a simple and effective mathematical-ecological model to evaluate the growth status and predict the population dynamics of Microcystis blooms. In this study, phytoplankton were collected and identified from 8 sampling sites in Chaohu Lake every month from July to October, 2010. The niche breadth and niche overlap of common species were calculated using standard equations, and the potential relative growth rates of Microcystis were calculated as a weighted-value of niche overlap. In July, the potential relative growth rate was 2.79 (a.u., arbitrary units) but then rapidly declined in the following months to -3.99 a.u. in September. A significant correlation ( R =0.998, P <0.01) was found in the model between the net-increase in biomass of Microcystis in the field and the predicted values calculated by the niche model, we concluded that the niche model is suitable for forecasting the dynamics of Microcystis blooms. Redundancy analysis indicated that decreases in water temperature, dissolved oxygen and total dissolved phosphorus might be major factors underlying bloom decline. Based on the theory of community succession being caused by resource competition, the growth and decline of blooms can be predicted from a community structure. This may provide a basis for early warning and control of algal blooms.

  13. Demographic, ecological, and physiological responses of ringed seals to an abrupt decline in sea ice availability.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, Steven H; Young, Brent G; Yurkowski, David J; Anderson, Randi; Willing, Cornelia; Nielsen, Ole

    2017-01-01

    To assess whether demographic declines of Arctic species at the southern limit of their range will be gradual or punctuated, we compared large-scale environmental patterns including sea ice dynamics to ringed seal (Pusa hispida) reproduction, body condition, recruitment, and stress in Hudson Bay from 2003 to 2013. Aerial surveys suggested a gradual decline in seal density from 1995 to 2013, with the lowest density occurring in 2013. Body condition decreased and stress (cortisol) increased over time in relation to longer open water periods. The 2010 open water period in Hudson Bay coincided with extremes in large-scale atmospheric patterns (North Atlantic Oscillation, Arctic Oscillation, El Nino-Southern Oscillation) resulting in the earliest spring breakup and the latest ice formation on record. The warming event was coincident with high stress level, low ovulation rate, low pregnancy rate, few pups in the Inuit harvest, and observations of sick seals. Results provide evidence of changes in the condition of Arctic marine mammals in relation to climate mediated sea ice dynamics. We conclude that although negative demographic responses of Hudson Bay seals are occurring gradually with diminishing sea ice, a recent episodic environmental event played a significant role in a punctuated population decline.

  14. Decline of the Black Sea oxygen inventory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capet, Arthur; Stanev, Emil V.; Beckers, Jean-Marie; Murray, James W.; Grégoire, Marilaure

    2016-03-01

    We show that from 1955 to 2015, the inventory of oxygen in the Black Sea has decreased by 44 % and the basin-averaged oxygen penetration depth has decreased from 140 m in 1955 to 90 m in 2015, which is the shallowest annual value recorded during that period. The oxygenated Black Sea surface layer separates the world's largest reservoir of toxic hydrogen sulfide from the atmosphere. The threat of chemocline excursion events led to hot debates in the past decades arguing on the vertical stability of the Black Sea oxic/suboxic interface. In the 1970s and 1980s, when the Black Sea faced severe eutrophication, enhanced respiration rates reduced the thickness of the oxygenated layer. Re-increasing oxygen inventory in 1985-1995 supported arguments in favor of the stability of the oxic layer. Concomitant with a reduction of nutrient loads, it also supported the perception of a Black Sea recovering from eutrophication. More recently, atmospheric warming was shown to reduce the ventilation of the lower oxic layer by lowering cold intermediate layer (CIL) formation rates. The debate on the vertical migration of the oxic interface also addressed the natural spatial variability affecting Black Sea properties when expressed in terms of depth. Here we show that using isopycnal coordinates does not overcome the significant spatial variability of oxygen penetration depth. By considering this spatial variability, the analysis of a composite historical set of oxygen profiles evidenced a significant shoaling of the oxic layer, and showed that the transient "recovery" of the 1990s was mainly a result of increased CIL formation rates during that period. As both atmospheric warming and eutrophication are expected to increase in the near future, monitoring the dynamics of the Black Sea oxic layer is urgently required to assess the threat of further shoaling.

  15. Rapid declines in metabolism explain extended coral larval longevity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, E. M.; Baird, A. H.; Connolly, S. R.; Sewell, M. A.; Willis, B. L.

    2013-06-01

    Lecithotrophic, or non-feeding, marine invertebrate larvae generally have shorter pelagic larval durations (PLDs) than planktotrophic larvae. However, non-feeding larvae of scleractinian corals have PLDs far exceeding those of feeding larvae of other organisms and predictions of PLD based on energy reserves and metabolic rates, raising questions about how such longevity is achieved. Here, we measured temporal changes in metabolic rates and total lipid content of non-feeding larvae of four species of reef corals to determine whether changes in energy utilization through time contribute to extended larval durations. The temporal dynamics of both metabolic rates and lipid content were highly consistent among species. Prior to fertilization, metabolic rates were low (2.73-8.63 nmol O2 larva-1 h-1) before rapidly increasing to a peak during embryogenesis and early development 1-2 days after spawning. Metabolic rates remained high until shortly after larvae first became competent to metamorphose and then declined by up to two orders of magnitude to levels at or below rates seen in unfertilized eggs over the following week. Larvae remained in this state of low metabolic activity for up to 2 months. Consistent with temporal patterns in metabolic rates, depletion of lipids was extremely rapid during early development and then slowed dramatically from 1 week onward. Despite the very low metabolic rates in these species, larvae continued to swim and retained competence for at least 2 months. The capacity of non-feeding coral larvae to enter a state of low metabolism soon after becoming competent to metamorphose significantly extends dispersal potential, thereby accruing advantages typically associated with planktotrophy, notably enhanced population connectivity.

  16. Declining ocean anoxia in a warming climate (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deutsch, C. A.; Ito, T.; van Geen, A.; Berelson, W.; Thunell, R.

    2013-12-01

    The warming of Earth's climate is expected to lead to a loss of oceanic dissolved oxygen, an important constraint on marine species habitat. The mechanisms underlying this so-called deoxygenation are that dissolved gases are less soluble in warmer waters, and the rate at which O2-rich surface water is circulated into the low-O2 interior ocean is also reduced due to increased thermal stratification. Here we show that a robust prediction of state-of-the-art Earth System Models is that in the oxygen minimum zone of the tropical thermocline, oxygen concentrations are relatively stable or even increasing in a warming climate. The tropical immunity to deoxygenation arises because the lower solubility of O2 is closely compensated by a reduced upwelling at the equator, which slows the rate of biological productivity at the surface and the bacterial oxygen demand in deeper waters. The reduction of nutrient supply to the surface ocean is driven not by stratification but by a weakening of the tropical trade winds. However it can also be viewed as a necessary consequence of the reduced ventilation in mid-latitudes, arising from the conservation of mass and the close coupling of nutrient and oxygen cycles. On centennial time scales, these dynamics are predicted to lead to a reduction of anoxia in the ocean, even while oxygen is steadily declining globally. Evidence from sediment cores along the North American margin suggest a gradual reduction in 20th century denitrification, and support the wind-driven mechanism predicted by Earth System Models.

  17. Birth of the cool: a two-centuries decline in emotional expression in Anglophone fiction.

    PubMed

    Morin, Olivier; Acerbi, Alberto

    2016-12-02

    The presence of emotional words and content in stories has been shown to enhance a story's memorability, and its cultural success. Yet, recent cultural trends run in the opposite direction. Using the Google Books corpus, coupled with two metadata-rich corpora of Anglophone fiction books, we show a decrease in emotionality in English-speaking literature starting plausibly in the nineteenth century. We show that this decrease cannot be explained by changes unrelated to emotionality (such as demographic dynamics concerning age or gender balance, changes in vocabulary richness, or changes in the prevalence of literary genres), and that, in our three corpora, the decrease is driven almost entirely by a decline in the proportion of positive emotion-related words, while the frequency of negative emotion-related words shows little if any decline. Consistently with previous studies, we also find a link between ageing and negative emotionality at the individual level.

  18. Longitudinal lung function decline among workers in a nitrate fertilizer production plant.

    PubMed

    Hovland, Kristin H; Skogstad, Marit; Bakke, Berit; Skare, Oivind; Skyberg, Knut

    2013-01-01

    This study examines the possible effect of exposure to aerosols and gases on lung function in a fertilizer plant in Norway. Dynamic lung volumes (FVC and FEV1) of 383 workers were measured in 2007 and 2010. During the follow-up period, most workers performed tasks with low exposure levels of acid aerosols and inorganic gases. The overall median inhalable and thoracic aerosol exposure levels were 1·1 and 0·21 mg/m(3), respectively. A questionnaire on respiratory symptoms was provided. During the follow-up period, there was an adjusted decrease of FEV1 of 18 ml/year (P<0·001). The respiratory symptoms score was low during follow-up. Work in this fertilizer industry may lead to an excessive lung function decline. We have, however, not been able to find any plausible exposure related explanation for the overall lung function decline.

  19. Iron-mediated soil carbon response to water-table decline in an alpine wetland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yiyun; Wang, Hao; He, Jin-Sheng; Feng, Xiaojuan

    2017-06-01

    The tremendous reservoir of soil organic carbon (SOC) in wetlands is being threatened by water-table decline (WTD) globally. However, the SOC response to WTD remains highly uncertain. Here we examine the under-investigated role of iron (Fe) in mediating soil enzyme activity and lignin stabilization in a mesocosm WTD experiment in an alpine wetland. In contrast to the classic `enzyme latch' theory, phenol oxidative activity is mainly controlled by ferrous iron [Fe(II)] and declines with WTD, leading to an accumulation of dissolvable aromatics and a reduced activity of hydrolytic enzyme. Furthermore, using dithionite to remove Fe oxides, we observe a significant increase of Fe-protected lignin phenols in the air-exposed soils. Fe oxidation hence acts as an `iron gate' against the `enzyme latch' in regulating wetland SOC dynamics under oxygen exposure. This newly recognized mechanism may be key to predicting wetland soil carbon storage with intensified WTD in a changing climate.

  20. Healthy eating and reduced risk of cognitive decline

    PubMed Central

    Dehghan, Mahshid; O'Donnell, Martin; Anderson, Craig; Teo, Koon; Gao, Peggy; Sleight, Peter; Dagenais, Gilles; Probstfield, Jeffrey L.; Mente, Andrew; Yusuf, Salim

    2015-01-01

    Objective: We sought to determine the association of dietary factors and risk of cognitive decline in a population at high risk of cardiovascular disease. Methods: Baseline dietary intake and measures of the Mini-Mental State Examination were recorded in 27,860 men and women who were enrolled in 2 international parallel trials of the ONTARGET (Ongoing Telmisartan Alone and in Combination with Ramipril Global Endpoint Trial) and TRANSCEND (Telmisartan Randomised Assessment Study in ACE Intolerant Subjects with Cardiovascular Disease) studies. We measured diet quality using the modified Alternative Healthy Eating Index. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to determine the association between diet quality and risk of ≥3-point decline in Mini-Mental State Examination score, and reported as hazard ratio with 95% confidence intervals with adjustment for covariates. Results: During 56 months of follow-up, 4,699 cases of cognitive decline occurred. We observed lower risk of cognitive decline among those in the healthiest dietary quintile of modified Alternative Healthy Eating Index compared with lowest quintile (hazard ratio 0.76, 95% confidence interval 0.66–0.86, Q5 vs Q1). Lower risk of cognitive decline was consistent regardless of baseline cognitive level. Conclusion: We found that higher diet quality was associated with a reduced risk of cognitive decline. Improved diet quality represents an important potential target for reducing the global burden of cognitive decline. PMID:25948720