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Sample records for breeding bird populations

  1. Breeding bird populations and habitat associations within the Savannah River Site (SRS).

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gauthreaux, Sidney, A.; Steven J. Wagner.

    2005-06-29

    Gauthreaux, Sidney, A., and Steven J. Wagner. 2005. Breeding bird populations and habitat associations within the Savannah River Site (SRS). Final Report. USDA Forest Service, Savannah River, Aiken, SC. 48 pp. Abstract: During the 1970's and 1980's a dramatic decline occurred in the populations of Neotropical migratory birds, species that breed in North America and winter south of the border in Central and South America and in the Caribbean. In 1991 an international initiative was mounted by U. S. governmental land management agencies, nongovernmental conservation agencies, and the academic and lay ornithological communities to understand the decline of Neotropical migratory birds in the Americas. In cooperation with the USDA Forest Service - Savannah River (FS - SR) we began 1992 a project directed to monitoring population densities of breeding birds using the Breeding Bird Census (BBC) methodology in selected habitats within the Savannah River Site SRS. In addition we related point count data on the occurrence of breeding Neotropical migrants and other bird species to the habitat data gathered by the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program of the USDA Forest Service and data on habitat treatments within forest stands.

  2. Climate change and the risks associated with delayed breeding in a tropical wild bird population

    OpenAIRE

    Senapathi, Deepa; Nicoll, Malcolm A C; Teplitsky, Celine; Jones, Carl G.; Norris, Ken

    2011-01-01

    There is growing evidence of changes in the timing of important ecological events, such as flowering in plants and reproduction in animals, in response to climate change, with implications for population decline and biodiversity loss. Recent work has shown that the timing of breeding in wild birds is changing in response to climate change partly because individuals are remarkably flexible in their timing of breeding. Despite this work, our understanding of these processes in wild populations ...

  3. Breeding bird populations of Irish peatlands : capsule peatlands are very important habitats for birds despite low species diversity

    OpenAIRE

    Bracken, Fintan; Barry J. McMahon; Whelan, John

    2008-01-01

    Aims to describe the variation in breeding bird populations that occur on different types of Irish peatlands and their associated habitat characteristics. Methods: Bird abundance and diversity were compared between four peatland habitat types: fens; raised bogs; Atlantic blanket bogs; and montane blanket bogs at twelve study sites using transects. Various measures of habitat quality were also taken at each location. Results: Only 21 species were recorded during the study with Meadow Pip...

  4. Birds - Breeding [ds60

    Data.gov (United States)

    California Department of Resources — This data set provides access to information gathered on annual breeding bird surveys in California using a map layer developed by the Department. This data layer...

  5. Combining Breeding Bird Survey and Christmas Bird Count data to evaluate seasonal components of population change in Northern Bobwhite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Link, W.A.; Sauer, J.R.; Niven, D.K.

    2008-01-01

    Annual surveys of wildlife populations provide information about annual rates of change in populations but provide no information about when such changes occur. However, by combining data from 2 annual surveys, conducted in different parts of the year, seasonal components of population change can be estimated. We describe a hierarchical model for simultaneous analysis of 2 continent-scale monitoring programs. The Christmas Bird Count is an early winter survey, whereas the North American Breeding Bird Survey is conducted in June. Combining information from these surveys permits estimation of seasonal population variance components and improves estimation of long-term population trends. The composite analysis also controls for survey-specific sampling effects. We applied the model to estimation of population change in northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus). Over the interval 1969?2004, bobwhite populations declined, with trend estimate of -3.56% per year (95% CI = [-3.80%, -3.32%]) in the surveyed portion of their range. Our analysis of seasonal population variance components indicated that northern bobwhite populations changed more in the winter and spring portion of the year than in the summer and fall portion of the year.

  6. Breeding Bird Populations at Selected Sites on Tewaukon National Wildlife Refuge Complex : 2002

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes breeding bird surveys that were conducted on Tewaukon National Wildlife Refuge in June and July of 2002. Eleven study plots were established...

  7. Breeding Bird Populations at Selected Sites on Tewaukon National Wildlife Refuge Complex : 2001

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes breeding bird surveys that were conducted on Tewaukon National Wildlife Refuge in June of 2001. Eleven study plots were established and...

  8. Population Densities of Birds Breeding in Urbanized Habitats in the Grabiszyn District in the City of Wrocław

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kopij Grzegorz

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Studies were carried out in 2010 by mean of simplified version of the mapping method. The study area (395 ha was located close to the city centre. It comprised a mosaic of urbanized habitats, with a clear dominance of green areas, such as parks (41.1 ha, gardens, cemeteries and tree clumps. A total of 48 breeding bird species were recorded in the whole study area. The most common (<25 pairs/100 ha were Passer domesticus, Passer montanus, Sturnus vulgaris, Parus caeruleus, Parus major, Apus apus and Columba livia. Numerous (7-15 pairs/100 ha were also the following species: Columba palumbus, Turdus pilaris, Sylvia atricapilla, Serinus serinus, Turdus merula and Pica pica. Insectivorous birds were the most common birds constituting 63.3%, and granivorous -32.6% of all pairs recorded. Most birds nested in tree holes (39.3%, in/on buildings (30.2% and in trees/shrubs (25.6%. Distribution of breeding pairs of 23 bird species was presented on maps. Population trends for 17 species were documented. Rapid increase in numbers of Turdus pilaris, Corvus cornix and Phoenicurus phoenicurus and decrease of Pica pica were recorded.

  9. Effects of habitat change along Breeding Bird Survey routes in the central Appalachians on Cerulean Warbler population

    Science.gov (United States)

    McElhone, P.; Wood, P.W.; Dawson, D.

    2007-01-01

    The cerulean warbler (Dendroica cerulea) is one of the highest priority bird species in the eastern United States because populations have declined 4.3% annually during 1966?2005 based on Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) data. Habitat loss and fragmentation due to land use changes is thought to be one of the major factors contributing to the decline. BBS routes, the primary source for monitoring bird population trends, include 50 sampling stops every 0.8 km. Although data from BBS routes are extrapolated to determine regional trends in bird populations, it is important to understand the effects of habitat changes at the stop-level along BBS routes. Route-level analysis of habitat changes may mask important changes that are occurring at a smaller scale particularly for the cerulean warbler which displays several micro-scale habitat preferences. We are examining cerulean warbler habitat and population changes in its core breeding range of the Ohio Hills and Cumberland Plateau physiographic regions. We quantified land cover changes within 300 m of BBS routes in the core cerulean warbler breeding range of Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky by digitizing aerial photographs from two time periods: the 1980s and 2004. We also quantified land cover changes within 300 m of BBS routes with the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) from 1992 and 2001. The hand-digitized aerial photos will be compared with the NLCD to determine how similar the two methods are in quantifying land cover changes. We then compared stop-level land cover changes with stop level changes in cerulean warbler detections within the same time periods along the BBS routes. This will allow for a more detailed analysis of how well habitat changes along BBS routes reflect the changes in cerulean warbler populations.

  10. A Study of the Effects of Gas Well Compressor Noise on Breeding Bird Populations of the Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area, San Juan County, New Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    LaGory, K.E.; Chang, Young-Soo; Chun, K.C.; Reeves, T.; Liebich, R.; Smith, K.

    2001-06-04

    This report, conducted from May through July 2000, addressed the potential effect of compressor noise on breeding birds in gas-production areas administered by the FFO, specifically in the Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area northeast of Farmington, New Mexico. The study was designed to quantify and characterize noise output from these compressors and to determine if compressor noise affected bird populations in adjacent habitat during the breeding season.

  11. Post-fragmentation population structure in a cooperative breeding Afrotropical cloud forest bird: emergence of a source-sink population network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husemann, M; Cousseau, L; Callens, T; Matthysen, E; Vangestel, C; Hallmann, C; Lens, L

    2015-03-01

    The impact of demographic parameters on the genetic population structure and viability of organisms is a long-standing issue in the study of fragmented populations. Demographic and genetic tools are now readily available to estimate census and effective population sizes and migration and gene flow rates with increasing precision. Here we analysed the demography and genetic population structure over a recent 15-year time span in five remnant populations of Cabanis's greenbul (Phyllastrephus cabanisi), a cooperative breeding bird in a severely fragmented cloud forest habitat. Contrary to our expectation, genetic admixture and effective population sizes slightly increased, rather than decreased between our two sampling periods. In spite of small effective population sizes in tiny forest remnants, none of the populations showed evidence of a recent population bottleneck. Approximate Bayesian modelling, however, suggested that differentiation of the populations coincided at least partially with an episode of habitat fragmentation. The ratio of meta-Ne to meta-Nc was relatively low for birds, which is expected for cooperative breeding species, while Ne /Nc ratios strongly varied among local populations. While the overall trend of increasing population sizes and genetic admixture may suggest that Cabanis's greenbuls increasingly cope with fragmentation, the time period over which these trends were documented is rather short relative to the average longevity of tropical species. Furthermore, the critically low Nc in the small forest remnants keep the species prone to demographic and environmental stochasticity, and it remains open if, and to what extent, its cooperative breeding behaviour helps to buffer such effects.

  12. North American Breeding Bird Survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This protocol framework provides guidance for conducting surveys of North American bird populations at multiple stations within two or more regions. The BBS is a...

  13. Breeding Bird Survey and bird banding data: Applications to raptor research and management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, J.R.; Droege, S.; Bystrak, D.

    1991-01-01

    The Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) and Bird Banding Laboratory (BBL) are sources of information for raptor biologists. The BBS has been conducted each year since 1966 in the United States and Canada; historical bird banding records extend back to the early 20th century. BBS data can be used to document population trends and breeding distributions of many bird species. Banding data are generally collected for specific and local studies of bird populations or behavior. Past use of these data has been limited by their volume and relative inaccessibility. In this paper, we present an overview of BBS and BBL raptor data and their uses, limitations and availability.

  14. Traffic effects on bird counts on North American Breeding Bird Survey routes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffith, Emily H.; Sauer, John R.; Royle, J. Andrew

    2010-01-01

    The North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) is an annual roadside survey used to estimate population change in >420 species of birds that breed in North America. Roadside sampling has been criticized, in part because traffic noise can interfere with bird counts. Since 1997, data have been collected on the numbers of vehicles that pass during counts at each stop. We assessed the effect of traffic by modeling total vehicles as a covariate of counts in hierarchical Poisson regression models used to estimate population change. We selected species for analysis that represent birds detected at low and high abundance and birds with songs of low and high frequencies. Increases in vehicle counts were associated with decreases in bird counts in most of the species examined. The size and direction of these effects remained relatively constant between two alternative models that we analyzed. Although this analysis indicated only a small effect of incorporating traffic effects when modeling roadside counts of birds, we suggest that continued evaluation of changes in traffic at BBS stops should be a component of future BBS analyses.

  15. Estimating the size of Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis) breeding populations

    OpenAIRE

    Gutiérrez, Ricard; Figuerola, Jordi

    1997-01-01

    [eng] The esti­ mation of Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis breeding numbers has been found to be quite difficult, given the shy behavior of breeding birds, Different methods have been used, although their accuracy has never been tested. The breeding population was estimated in 1994 at 27 different water bodies in the Liobregat Delta (NE Spain). Breeding numbers were estimated by two methods: a) call census plus territory mapping, and b) direct nest searches. Breeding call surveys gave a 19...

  16. Breeding bird study in the Mississippi River Floodplain

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — A breeding bird study was initiated in 1992 to census birds on the Gardner Division of Mark Twain NWR. The division is located in the Mississippi River floodplain...

  17. Some breeding and ecological aspects of heronry birds at Soor Sarovar Bird Sanctuary Agra, Northern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaushalendra Kumar Jha

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Multi-species heronry at Soor Sarovar Bird Sanctuary, Agra was studied for some breeding and ecological aspects. This is an established heronry in semi-arid region with less than 600 mm rainfall and temperature range of 2oC to 48oC. Two near threatened (Black-headed Ibis and Darter and twelve least concerned species nested in colony during late summer and rainy season. They were categorized as the early arrivers (Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Darter and Grey Heron, late arrivers (Intermediate Egret, Indian Pond Heron, Great Egret, Black-headed Ibis, Purple Heron and Asian Openbill and very late arrivers (Eurasian Spoonbill, Little Cormorant and Indian Cormorant. Total Nest occupancy at a time followed the rainfall pattern of the locality. Nest occupancy calendar was recorded in the form of pre-egg laying, egg laying and chick rearing dates for all the species. Nesting height-bird size hypothesis was checked as mixed results as the stratum specific birds proved the hypothesis right, while stratum interface birds suggested relook of the hypothesis. Heronry threat, disturbance behavior of the birds and disturbance distance were recorded. Buffer establishment and heronry protection measures are recommended for conservation of the source population. The breeding phenology data could be used as baseline as indicator tool for climate change impact.

  18. Effects of haying on breeding birds in CRP grasslands

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    Igl, Lawrence D.; Johnson, Douglas H.

    2016-01-01

    The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a voluntary program that is available to agricultural producers to help protect environmentally sensitive or highly erodible land. Management disturbances of CRP grasslands generally are not allowed unless authorized to provide relief to livestock producers during severe drought or a similar natural disaster (i.e., emergency haying and grazing) or to improve the quality and performance of the CRP cover (i.e., managed haying and grazing). Although CRP grasslands may not be hayed or grazed during the primary bird-nesting season, these disturbances may have short-term (1 yr after disturbance) and long-term (≥2 yr after disturbance) effects on grassland bird populations. We assessed the effects of haying on 20 grassland bird species in 483 CRP grasslands in 9 counties of 4 states in the northern Great Plains, USA between 1993 and 2008. We compared breeding bird densities (as determined by total-area counts) in idle and hayed fields to evaluate changes 1, 2, 3, and 4 years after haying. Haying of CRP grasslands had either positive or negative effects on grassland birds, depending on the species, the county, and the number of years after the initial disturbance. Some species (e.g., horned lark [Eremophila alpestris], bobolink [Dolichonyx oryzivorus]) responded positively after haying, and others (e.g., song sparrow [Melospiza melodia]) responded negatively. The responses of some species changed direction as the fields recovered from haying. For example, densities for common yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas), sedge wren (Cistothorus platensis), and clay-colored sparrow (Spizella pallida) declined the first year after haying but increased in the subsequent 3 years. Ten species showed treatment × county interactions, indicating that the effects of haying varied geographically. This long-term evaluation on the effects of haying on breeding birds provides important information on the strength and direction of changes in

  19. Migratory diversity predicts population declines in birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. PMID:26807694

  20. Relative Abundance of Breeding Birds in the Dismal Swamp 1982

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    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — To obtain an idea of the relative abundance of breeding birds in the predominant mixed swamp hardwoods forest of the Dismal Swamp in southeastern Virginia, a...

  1. Survey of breeding birds, Walnut Creek National Wildlife Refuge, 1996

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report is a summary of the results of the third annual survey of breeding birds of Walnut Creek National Wildlife Refuge conducted in 1996. Information on...

  2. Bird-window collisions in the summer breeding season

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen B. Hager

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Birds that reside in urban settings face numerous human-related threats to survival, including mortality from bird-window collisions (BWCs. Our current understanding of this issue has largely been driven by data collected during spring and fall migration, and patterns of collision mortality during the summer breeding season remain relatively unexplored. We assessed BWCs during four breeding seasons (2009–2012 at a site in northwestern Illinois, USA, by comparing the abundance, richness, migratory class, and age of the species living around buildings to species mortally wounded by window collisions. We also systematically assessed the daily timing of BWCs throughout the breeding season. We documented BWCs in 4 of 25 (16% species and 7 of 21 (33% species in 2009 and 2010, respectively. The relationship between BWCs and abundance depended on age. For adults, BWCs were highest in the least abundant species, e.g., Red-eyed Vireo (Vireo olivaceus, and lowest in species with high abundance values, e.g., Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina. For juveniles, mortality was greatest for the most abundant species, and the American Robin (Turdus migratorius accounted for 62% of all juvenile carcasses. Early in the breeding season, collision mortality was restricted to adults of Long-distance Migrants, whereas juveniles of all three migratory guilds (Long-distance and Short-distance Migrants and Permanent Residents died at windows from late June through early August. Daily mortality for all species was highest between sunrise–1600 h and lowest from 1600 h–sunrise the next day. Generally, the species observed as carcasses matched birds considered a ‘high risk’ for BWCs, e.g., Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris, and those considered ‘low risk’ were not observed as carcasses, e.g., Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea. Our results suggest that the number of BWCs during the breeding season does not necessarily increase with

  3. REDUCED FOREST COVER AND CHANGES IN BREEDING BIRD SPECIES COMPOSITION IN RHODE ISLAND

    Science.gov (United States)

    This study was conducted to assess the relationship of land use/cover, riparian vegetation, and avian populations. Our objective was to compare the vegetation structure in riparian corridors with the composition of breeding bird populations in eight Rhode Island subwatersheds alo...

  4. Grassland bird surveys in support of the Michigan Breeding Bird Atlas II: Final report

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Grassland birds, as a group, have suffered the most severe population declines of any other North American birds (Herkert 1995, Herkert et al. 1996). Compared to...

  5. Iowa Breed Bird Atlas 2, 2008-2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    Iowa State University GIS Support and Research Facility — These are the locations of Iowa's Second Breeding Bird Atlas. Blocks are 3 by 3 miles in size. Some of the blocks are the same as those surveyed in the first BBA,...

  6. Artificial insemination for breeding non-domestic birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gee, G.F.; Temple, S.A.

    1978-01-01

    Captive breeding of non-domestic birds has increased dramatically in this century, and production of young often exceeds that of the same number of birds in their native habitat. However, when infertility is a problem, artificial insemination can be a useful method to improve production. Artificial insemination programs with non-domestic birds are relatively recent, but several notable successes have been documented, especially with cranes and raptors. Three methods of artificial insemination are described--cooperative, massage, and electroejaculation. Cooperative artificial insemination requires training of birds imprinted on man and is used extensively in some raptor programs. The massage technique generally is used when there are larger numbers of birds to inseminate since it requires less training of the birds than with the cooperative method, and a larger number of attempted semen collections are successful. Although the best samples are obtained from birds conditioned to capture and handling procedures associated with the massage method, samples can be obtained from wild birds. Semen collection and insemination for the crane serves to illustrate some of the modifications necessary to compensate for anatomical variations. Collection of semen by electrical stimulation is not commonly used in birds. Unlike the other two methods which require behavioral cooperation by the bird, electroejaculation is possible in reproductively active birds without prior conditioning when properly restrained. Fertility from artificial insemination in captive non-domestic-birds has been good. Although some spermatozoal morphology has been reported, most aspects of morphology are not useful in predicting fertility. However, spermatozoal head length in the crane may have a positive correlation with fertility. Nevertheless, insemination with the largest number of live spermatozoa is still the best guarantee of fertile egg production.

  7. Breeding bird density does not drive vocal individuality

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Daniel T.BLUMSTEIN; Douglas R.MCCLAIN; Carrie DE JESUS; Gustavo ALARC(O)N-NIETO

    2012-01-01

    Many species produce individually specific vocalizations and sociality is a hypothesized driver of such individuality.Previous studies of how social variation influenced individuality focused on colonial or non-colonial avian species,and how social group size influenced individuality in sciurid rodents.Since sociality is an important driver of individuality,we expected that bird species that defend nesting territories in higher density neighborhoods should have more individually-distinctive calls than those that defend nesting territories in lower-density neighborhoods.We used Beecher's information statistic to quantify individuality,and we examined the relationship between bird density (calculated with point-counts) and vocal individuality on seven species of passerines.We found non-significant relationships between breeding bird density and vocal individuality whether regressions were fitted on species values,or on phylogenetically-independent contrast values.From these results,we infer that while individuality may be explained by social factors,breeding bird density is unlikely to be generally important in driving the evolution of individually-specific vocalizations.

  8. Bird populations in coastal habitats, Arctic National Wildlife Range, Alaska: Results of 1978 and 1979 surveys

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Within the coastal zone of the Arctic National Wildlife Range, the highest breeding populations of birds occurred in wet and flooded sedge tundra areas surrounded...

  9. Preferred habitat of breeding birds may be compromised by climate change: unexpected effects of an exceptionally cold, wet spring

    OpenAIRE

    Whitehouse, Michael J.; Harrison, Nancy M.; Julia Mackenzie; Shelley A Hinsley

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England – mi...

  10. Integrating Shrubland and Grassland breeding bird habitat management at Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge 2005

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This is a series of reports and emails that attempt to answer the question “Is it possible to integrate grassland breeding bird and shrub land bird management in...

  11. Why do some adult birds skip breeding? A hormonal investigation in a long-lived bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goutte, Aurélie; Kriloff, Marion; Weimerskirch, Henri; Chastel, Olivier

    2011-10-23

    Skipping reproduction is often observed in long-lived organisms, but proximate mechanisms remain poorly understood. Since young and/or very old snow petrels (Pagodroma nivea) commonly skip breeding, we tested whether they are physiologically able to breed during the pre-laying stage. To do so, we measured the ability of known-age (11-45 years old) petrels to release luteinizing hormone (LH, a crucial driver for breeding), by injecting exogenous gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Although young petrels exhibited low baseline LH levels, they were able to elevate LH levels after a GnRH challenge. Moreover, young and very old petrels showed a stronger decrease in LH levels after the 10 min post-GnRH injection compared with middle-aged petrels. Birds that skipped breeding were as able as breeders to release LH after a GnRH challenge, indicating that they had functional pituitaries. However, the decision to skip reproduction was linked to a strong LH decrease after the 10 min post-GnRH injection. Our result suggests that the youngest and the oldest petrels fail to maintain elevated baseline LH levels, thereby do not initiate reproductive activities. Skipping reproduction in long-lived birds probably results from age-related changes in the dynamics of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis function.

  12. Population trend and breeding biology of Montagu's Harrier Circus pygargus in a natural vegetation site in northeast Spain

    OpenAIRE

    Limiñana, Rubén; Surroca Royo, Martín; Miralles, Stephan; Urios, Vicente; Jiménez, Juan (O.F.M.), trad

    2004-01-01

    Capsule: Reproductive output in a natural habitat was higher than in birds breeding in cereal crops, highlighting the importance of natural habitats for the species. Aims: To evaluate breeding in a natural habitat in inland Castellon province, Spain, and compare breeding parameters with other European populations. Methods: Breeding population size in inland Castellon was recorded between 1981 and 2003. A logistic growth model was used to describe population increase. We also calculated clu...

  13. Potential impacts of climatic change on European breeding birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian Huntley

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Climatic change is expected to lead to changes in species' geographical ranges. Adaptation strategies for biodiversity conservation require quantitative estimates of the magnitude, direction and rates of these potential changes. Such estimates are of greatest value when they are made for large ensembles of species and for extensive (sub-continental or continental regions. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: For six climate scenarios for 2070-99 changes have been estimated for 431 European breeding bird species using models relating species' distributions in Europe to climate. Mean range centroid potentially shifted 258-882 km in a direction between 341 degrees (NNW and 45 degrees (NE, depending upon the climate scenario considered. Potential future range extent averaged 72-89% of the present range, and overlapped the present range by an average of 31-53% of the extent of the present range. Even if potential range changes were realised, the average number of species breeding per 50x50 km grid square would decrease by 6.8-23.2%. Many species endemic or near-endemic to Europe have little or no overlap between their present and potential future ranges; such species face an enhanced extinction risk as a consequence of climatic change. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Although many human activities exert pressures upon wildlife, the magnitude of the potential impacts estimated for European breeding birds emphasises the importance of climatic change. The development of adaptation strategies for biodiversity conservation in the face of climatic change is an urgent need; such strategies must take into account quantitative evidence of potential climatic change impacts such as is presented here.

  14. The role of citizen science in bird conservation: The Christmas Bird Count and Breeding Bird Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, John R.; Butcher, Gregory S.

    2014-01-01

    Many birders in the United States, Canada, and Mexico are critical participants in bird monitoring and conservation activities. This linkage between recreational birders and avian conservation surveys is not new. It was established long before the internet and long before any fast communication facilitated the connection of birders to scientists. It started because a few key individuals realized that birding with a purpose added a new and important dimension to a recreational activity—and birders loved the idea that they were helping to study and conserve the birds they watch. And they still do today.

  15. Population dynamics of marine birds: Annual report

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The characteristic dynamics of Alaskan marine bird populations are being described from studies conducted at 12 OCSEAP-funded and 6nonOCSEAP-funded U. S. Fish and...

  16. Analysis of the North American Breeding Bird Survey using hierarchical models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, John R.; Link, William A.

    2011-01-01

    We analyzed population change for 420 bird species from the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) using a hierarchical log-linear model, and compared the results to route regression analysis results. Survey-wide trend estimates based on the hierarchical model were more precise than estimates from the earlier analysis. No consistent pattern of differences existed in magnitude of trends between the analysis methods. Survey-wide trend estimates changed substantially for 15 species between route regression and hierarchical model analyses. We compared regional estimates for states, provinces, and Bird Conservation Regions; differences observed in these regional analyses are likely a consequence of the route regression procedure's inadequate accommodation of temporal differences in survey effort. We used species-specific hierarchical model results to estimate composite change for groups of birds associated with major habitats and migration types. Grassland, aridland, and eastern forest obligate bird species declined, while urban/suburban species increased over the interval 1968-2008. No migration status group experienced significant changes, although Nearctic-Neotropical migrant species showed intervals of decline and permanent resident species increased almost 20% during the interval. Hierarchical model results better portrayed patterns of population change over time than route regression results; we recommend use of hierarchical models for BBS analyses.

  17. Influence of land use and climate on wetland breeding birds in the Prairie Pothole region of Canada

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    Forcey, G.M.; Linz, G.M.; Thogmartin, W.E.; Bleier, W.J.

    2007-01-01

    Bird populations are influenced by a variety of factors at both small and large scales that range from the presence of suitable nesting habitat, predators, and food supplies to climate conditions and land-use patterns. We evaluated the influences of regional climate and land-use variables on wetland breeding birds in the Canada section of Bird Conservation Region 11 (CA-BCR11), the Prairie Potholes. We used bird abundance data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey, land-use data from the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration, and weather data from the National Climatic Data and Information Archive to model effects of regional environmental variables on bird abundance. Models were constructed a priori using information from published habitat associations in the literature, and fitting was performed with WinBUGS using Markov chain Monte Carlo techniques. Both land-use and climate variables contributed to predicting bird abundance in CA-BCR11, although climate predictors contributed the most to improving model fit. Examination of regional effects of climate and land use on wetland birds in CA-BCR11 revealed relationships with environmental covariates that are often overlooked by small-scale habitat studies. Results from these studies can be used to improve conservation and management planning for regional populations of avifauna. ?? 2007 NRC.

  18. Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey was initiated experimentally in 1947 and became operational in 1955. It is conducted cooperatively by the U.S....

  19. Waterfowl breeding population survey: Southern Manitoba: 1983

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for southern Manitoba during 1983. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  20. Western Ontario: Waterfowl breeding population survey: 1998

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for western Ontario during 1998. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  1. Waterfowl breeding population survey: Southern Saskatchewan: 1979

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for southern Saskatchewan during 1979. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  2. Bird populations as sentinels of endocrine disrupting chemicals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio Carere

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs is a widespread phenomenon in nature. Although the mechanisms of action of EDCs are actively studied, the consequences of endocrine disruption (ED at the population level and the adaptations evolved to cope with chronic EDC exposure have been overlooked. Birds probably represent the animal taxon most successfully adapted to synanthropic life. Hence, birds share with humans a similar pattern of exposure to xenobiotics. In this article, we review case studies on patterns of behaviour that deviate from the expectation in bird species exposed to EDCs. We provide behavioural and ecological parameters to be used as endpoints of ED; methodological requirements and caveats based on species-specific life-history traits, behavioural repertoires, developmental styles, and possibility of captive breeding; a list of species that could be used as sentinels to assess the quality of man-made environment.

  3. Insect ectoparasites on wild birds in the Czech Republic during the pre-breeding period

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sychra O.

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Wild passerine birds (Passeriformes from the northeastern part of the Czech Republic were examined for ectoparasites during the pre-breeding period in 2007. Two species of fleas of the genera Ceratophyllus and Dasypsyllus (Siphonaptera: Ceratophyllidae, and 23 species of chewing lice belonging to the genera Ricinus, Myrsidea, Menacanthus (Phthiraptera: Menoponidae, Brueelia, Penenirmus, and Philopterus (Phthiraptera: Philopteridae were found on 108 birds of 16 species. Distribution of insect ectoparasites found on wild birds during pre-breeding was compared with previous data from the post-breeding period. There was no difference in total prevalence of chewing lice in prebreeding and post-breeding periods. Higher prevalence of fleas and slightly higher mean intensity of chewing lice were found on birds during the pre-breeding period. There was a significant difference in total prevalence but equal mean intensity of chewing lice on resident and migrating birds.

  4. Climate change and population declines in a long-distance migratory bird

    OpenAIRE

    Both, C; Bouwhuis, S.; Lessells, CM; Visser, ME

    2006-01-01

    Phenological responses to climate change differ across trophic levels(1-3), which may lead to birds failing to breed at the time of maximal food abundance. Here we investigate the population consequences of such mistiming in the migratory pied flycatcher, Ficedula hypoleuca(4). In a comparison of nine Dutch populations, we find that populations have declined by about 90% over the past two decades in areas where the food for provisioning nestlings peaks early in the season and the birds are cu...

  5. Long-term climate impacts on breeding bird phenology in Pennsylvania, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, Molly E; DeGroote, Lucas W

    2016-10-01

    Climate change is influencing bird phenology worldwide, but we still lack information on how many species are responding over long temporal periods. We assessed how climate affected passerine reproductive timing and productivity at a constant effort mist-netting station in western Pennsylvania using a model comparison approach. Several lines of evidence point to the sensitivity of 21 breeding passerines to climate change over five decades. The trends for temperature and precipitation over 53 years were slightly positive due to intraseasonal variation, with the greatest temperature increases and precipitation declines in early spring. Regardless of broodedness, migration distance, or breeding season, 13 species hatched young earlier over time with most advancing >3 days per decade. Warm springs were associated with earlier captures of juveniles for 14 species, ranging from 1- to 3-day advancement for every 1 °C increase. This timing was less likely to be influenced by spring precipitation; nevertheless, higher rainfall was usually associated with later appearance of juveniles and breeding condition in females. Temperature and precipitation were positively related to productivity for seven and eleven species, respectively, with negative relations evident for six and eight species. We found that birds fledged young earlier with increasing spring temperatures, potentially benefiting some multibrooded species. Indeed, some extended the duration of breeding in these warm years. Yet, a few species fledged fewer juveniles in warmer and wetter seasons, indicating that expected future increases could be detrimental to locally breeding populations. Although there were no clear relationships between life history traits and breeding phenology, species-specific responses to climate found in our study provide novel insights into phenological flexibility in songbirds. Our research underscores the value of long-term monitoring studies and the importance of continuing constant

  6. Bird-resistant pollination bags for sorghum breeding and germplasm maintenance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird damage is a problem in sorghum breeding and germplasm maintenance operations. Paper pollination bags are damaged by rain and provide minimal deterrent to birds. To overcome these limitations we fabricated pollination bags from spun polyethylene fiber sheeting. Seed loss by bird damage was elimi...

  7. Is breeding of farmland wading birds depressed by a combination of predator abundance and grazing?

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Wal, R; Palmer, S C F

    2008-06-23

    Agri-environment schemes have been implemented across Europe to counter biodiversity loss in agricultural landscapes and halt the continual decline of farmland birds, including waders. Such schemes provide financial compensation for changes in agricultural practice, including livestock grazing regimes. Scheme uptake has been variable, partly because farmers believe that other factors, notably predation, are key to wader population declines. On the basis of wader breeding surveys across Shetland, UK, we show that predator density and livestock grazing, through reducing sward height, interact to influence territoriality and thereby are likely to affect wader breeding success. Our results appear to reflect views of both farmers and government agencies, which indicates that future agri-environment schemes would benefit from genuine stakeholder participation to maximize scheme uptake, implementation and beneficial effects on biodiversity. Our findings also imply that agri-environment schemes will reap the greatest benefits for waders through reducing stocking rate where avian predators are abundant. PMID:18381262

  8. POPULATION SIZE OF AUTOCHTHONOUS AND LOCALLY ADAPTED HEN’S BREEDS ON AREA OF THE SLOVAK REPUBLIC

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. WEIS

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available On basic certificates about acceptation of Oravka Plymouth Rock, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, White Leghorn, Brown Leghorn and Sussex, controlled flocks of Slovak Union of Breeders, we analyzed total number of birds, number of breeding males, number of breeding females and effective population size by Simon and Buchenauer (1993 and we evaluated the populations of observed hen’s breeds to categorisations by Scherf (2000. The highest number of birds we recorded at breed New Hampshire from observed hen’s breeds. Average total number of animals in period of year 2003 - 2008 was 1373 birds with average effective population size 445.103. However, the population of New Hampshire poultry in Slovakia was evaluating by massive decrease in last years as a endangered - maintained breed for which an active conservation programme is in place. By contrast, the smallest number of animals was detected at breed White Leghorn with average total number 18.83 birds in period of year 2003 - 2008 and average effective population size 6.605. The breed White Leghorn in Slovakia we categorized to critical breed. National legislation on Slovakia has been created, the fist experience is being gathered and the European legislation is coming in practice. The conditions for the development and preservation of endangered breeds of poultry in Slovak Republic in the long term are being put in place by means of creative and well aimed utilisation of European and national legislation.

  9. Demographic routes to variability and regulation in bird populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sæther, Bernt-Erik; Grøtan, Vidar; Engen, Steinar; Coulson, Tim; Grant, Peter R.; Visser, Marcel E.; Brommer, Jon E.; Rosemary Grant, B.; Gustafsson, Lars; Hatchwell, Ben J.; Jerstad, Kurt; Karell, Patrik; Pietiäinen, Hannu; Roulin, Alexandre; Røstad, Ole W.; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2016-01-01

    There is large interspecific variation in the magnitude of population fluctuations, even among closely related species. The factors generating this variation are not well understood, primarily because of the challenges of separating the relative impact of variation in population size from fluctuations in the environment. Here, we show using demographic data from 13 bird populations that magnitudes of fluctuations in population size are mainly driven by stochastic fluctuations in the environment. Regulation towards an equilibrium population size occurs through density-dependent mortality. At small population sizes, population dynamics are primarily driven by environment-driven variation in recruitment, whereas close to the carrying capacity K, variation in population growth is more strongly influenced by density-dependent mortality of both juveniles and adults. Our results provide evidence for the hypothesis proposed by Lack that population fluctuations in birds arise from temporal variation in the difference between density-independent recruitment and density-dependent mortality during the non-breeding season. PMID:27328710

  10. Evaluation of a reproductive index for estimating productivity of grassland breeding birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, M.R.; Norment, C.; Runge, M.C.

    2010-01-01

    Declining populations of grassland breeding birds have led to increased efforts to assess habitat quality, typically by estimating density or relative abundance. Because some grassland habitats may function as ecological traps, a more appropriate metric for determining quality is breeding success, which is challenging to determine for many cryptic-nesting grassland birds. This difficulty led Vickery et al. (1992) to propose a reproductive index based on behavioral observations rather than nest fate. We rigorously evaluated the index for 2 years using a Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis) population in western New York and found a weak correlation in classification of the breeding stages of monitored territories among multiple observers (r = 0.398). We also discovered a large difference between overall territory and nest success rates independently estimated with the index (9.8% over the entire breeding cycle) and with nest searching and monitoring (41.7% of nests successfully fledged young). Most importantly, we made territory-level comparisons of index estimates with actual nest fate and found that the index correctly predicted fates for only 43% of the monitored nests. A Mayfield logistic regression analysis demonstrated that only index rank 4 (eggs hatched, but young failed to fledge) showed a strong positive correlation with nest success. Although the reproductive index may function as a coarse indicator of habitat suitability (e.g., documenting production in potential ecological traps), in our study the index exhibited neither internal consistency nor the ability to predict nest fate at the plot or territory level and functioned poorly as a substitute for nest searching and monitoring. ?? 2010 The American Ornithologists' Union.

  11. Bird Populations in Fernbank Forest: MIGRANT SPECIES.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmalz, Georgann

    1991-01-01

    This article discusses fragmented forests in general and provides arrival/departure data about migratory birds collected at Fernbank Forest which is located within metropolitan Atlanta. The data indicate that population trends for selected species have not changed over 19 years of migration recordings within this small, but important, fragmented…

  12. Breeding bird survey of the Delair Division of the Mark Twain National Wildlife Refuge, Annada District

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The objective of this study was to inventory the breeding birds, both game and nongame, present within the boundaries of the Mark Twain NWR, and to identify habitat...

  13. The effects of prairie management techniques, burning and mowing, on Iowa grassland breeding bird communities

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report investigates the effects of burning and mowing on the grassland breeding bird community of Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge in central Iowa. Two...

  14. Initial Survey Instructions for North American breeding bird survey at Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Initial Survey Instructions for the North American Breeding Bird Survey at Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge. This survey is conducted annually between May 22nd...

  15. 1999 Breeding Bird Survey Route Paths for the Lower 48 States - Direct Download

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This map layer portrays a 1999 snapshot of the approximate route paths of active Breeding Bird Survey routes in the lower 48 States. The paths are a visual...

  16. A summary of the 2003 Devils Lake Wetland Management District breeding bird survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — A Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) was conducted in the Devils Lake Wetland Management District (DLWMD) during the late spring and early summer of 2003. The DLWMD...

  17. Amendment Number 2 - Effects of Commercial Thinning in Slash Pine on Breeding Birds and Their Habitat

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — A plan to determine the impact on breeding birds and their habitat of thinning by commercial harvest in the slash pine habitat type on St. Vincent Island. This plan...

  18. The 1999-2003 Summary of the North American Breeding Bird Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardieck, K.L.; Sauer, J.R.

    2007-01-01

    Data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey were used to estimate continental and regional changes in bird populations for the 5-yr period 1999-2003 and the 2-yr period 2002-2003. These short-term changes were placed in the context of population trends estimated over the 1966-2003 interval. During 1999-2003, 41% of all species exhibited positive trends over the entire survey area, while 64% of all species exhibited positive change between 2002-2003. The continental and regional percentages of species with positive trends were also analyzed for 12 species groups having shared life-history traits. Survey-wide for the entire survey period, grassland birds exhibited the lowest percentage of increasing species (14%), with their sharpest declines occurring in the West during 1999-2003 (10% increasing). During 1999-2003, short-distance migrants experienced significant declines in all regions, where numbers of species with increasing trends ranged from 22% - 34%. Most species fared well during the 2002-2003 period, with 64% (P Central and Western BBS regions where 21 of 24 species groups exhibited significant increases in the number of species with positive trends.

  19. Viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-10-11

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is tasked with setting objective and measurable criteria for delisting species or populations listed under the Endangered Species Act. Determining the acceptable threshold for extinction risk for any species or population is a challenging task, particularly when facing marked uncertainty. The Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders (Polysticta stelleri) was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 1997 because of a perceived decline in abundance throughout their nesting range and geographic isolation from the Russian breeding population. Previous genetic studies and modeling efforts, however, suggest that there may be dispersal from the Russian breeding population. Additionally, evidence exists of population level nonbreeding events. Research was conducted to estimate population viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders, using both an open and closed model of population process for this threatened population. Projections under a closed population model suggest this population has a 100 percent probability of extinction within 42 years. Projections under an open population model suggest that with immigration there is no probability of permanent extinction. Because of random immigration process and nonbreeding behavior, however, it is likely that this population will continue to be present in low and highly variable numbers on the breeding grounds in Alaska. Monitoring the winter population, which includes both Russian and Alaskan breeding birds, may offer a more comprehensive indication of population viability.

  20. Strategic Plan for the North American Breeding Bird Survey: 2006-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    ,

    2007-01-01

    Executive Summary The mission of the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) is to provide scientifically credible measures of the status and trends of North American bird populations at continental and regional scales to inform biologically sound conservation and management actions. Determining population trends, relative abundance, and distributions of North American avifauna is critical for identifying conservation priorities, determining appropriate conservation actions, and evaluating those actions. The BBS program, jointly coordinated by the U.S. Geological Survey and Environment Canada?s Canadian Wildlife Service, provides the U.S. and Canadian Federal governments, state and provincial agencies, other conservation practitioners, and the general public with science-based avian population trend estimates and other information for regional and national species' population assessments. Despite the demonstrated value of the BBS for furthering avian conservation across North America, its importance is often underappreciated, and it is underfunded compared with many other government-supported programs that report on status of the environment. Today, BBS resources, adjusted for inflation, are below the amount allocated in the 1970s and are still only sufficient to support two biologists. Yet the number of routes, participants, data, and data requests has quadrupled. Data and information management and delivery requirements and security concerns, non-existent in 1966, impose further demands on BBS resources. In addition, the Mexican expansion of the BBS offers new hope for a truly continental approach to avian conservation, but also brings additional challenges. Meeting the goals of this plan will take cooperation among myriad stakeholders; yet, even with collaboration, most objectives of this plan will be unattainable if BBS program support is not increased. The BBS developed this strategic plan to help set priorities and identify resources required for the

  1. Preferred habitat of breeding birds may be compromised by climate change: unexpected effects of an exceptionally cold, wet spring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehouse, Michael J; Harrison, Nancy M; Mackenzie, Julia; Hinsley, Shelley A

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England--mixed deciduous woodland, riparian and urban habitat. Production, measured as brood biomass, was significantly lower in 2012 compared with the previous 9 years, with the decrease in productivity relatively greatest in woodland habitat. Production was related to hatch delay, i.e. birds not initiating incubation immediately after clutch completion, which was more common in 2012 than in previous years. The best predictor of hatch delay was daytime temperature (not nighttime minimum temperature) and rainfall, which convincingly reflected low growth and activity of caterpillar prey. We found that birds breeding in riparian and urban habitats were less vulnerable to the extremes of weather than those breeding in mixed deciduous woodland. PMID:24058694

  2. Preferred habitat of breeding birds may be compromised by climate change: unexpected effects of an exceptionally cold, wet spring.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Whitehouse

    Full Text Available Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England--mixed deciduous woodland, riparian and urban habitat. Production, measured as brood biomass, was significantly lower in 2012 compared with the previous 9 years, with the decrease in productivity relatively greatest in woodland habitat. Production was related to hatch delay, i.e. birds not initiating incubation immediately after clutch completion, which was more common in 2012 than in previous years. The best predictor of hatch delay was daytime temperature (not nighttime minimum temperature and rainfall, which convincingly reflected low growth and activity of caterpillar prey. We found that birds breeding in riparian and urban habitats were less vulnerable to the extremes of weather than those breeding in mixed deciduous woodland.

  3. Ecological Causes and Consequences of Intratropical Migration in Temperate-Breeding Migratory Birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stutchbury, Bridget J M; Siddiqui, Raafia; Applegate, Kelly; Hvenegaard, Glen T; Mammenga, Paul; Mickle, Nanette; Pearman, Myrna; Ray, James D; Savage, Anne; Shaheen, Tim; Fraser, Kevin C

    2016-09-01

    New discoveries from direct tracking of temperate-breeding passerines show that intratropical migration (ITM) occurs in a growing number of species, which has important implications for understanding their evolution of migration, population dynamics, and conservation needs. Our large sample size ([Formula: see text]) for purple martins (Progne subis subis) tracked with geolocators to winter sites in Brazil, combined with geolocator deployments at breeding colonies across North America, allowed us to test hypotheses for ITM, something which has not yet been possible to do for other species. ITM in purple martins was not obligate; only 44% of individuals exhibited ITM, and movements were not coordinated in time or space. We found no evidence to support the resource hypothesis; rainfall and temperature experienced by individual birds during their last 2 weeks at their first roost site were similar to conditions at their second roost site after ITM. Birds generally migrated away from the heavily forested northwestern Amazon to less forested regions to the south and east. ITM in this aerial insectivore appears to support the competition-avoidance hypothesis and may be triggered by increasing local density in the core wintering region. Full life cycle models and migratory networks will need to incorporate ITM to properly address seasonal carryover effects and identify which wintering regions are most important for conservation. PMID:27513909

  4. Neuroendocrine regulation of gonadotropin secretion in seasonally breeding birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takayoshi eUbuka

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Seasonally breeding birds detect environmental signals, such as light, temperature, food availability and presence of mates to time reproduction. Hypothalamic neurons integrate external and internal signals, and regulate reproduction by releasing neurohormones to the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland synthesizes and releases gonadotropins which in turn act on the gonads to stimulate gametogenesis and sex steroid secretion. Accordingly, how gonadotropin secretion is controlled by the hypothalamus is key to our understanding of the mechanisms of seasonal reproduction. A hypothalamic neuropeptide, gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH, activates reproduction by stimulating gonadotropin synthesis and release. Another hypothalamic neuropeptide, gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH, inhibits gonadotropin synthesis and release directly by acting on the pituitary gland or indirectly by decreasing the activity of GnRH neurons. Therefore, the next step to understand seasonal reproduction is to investigate how the activities of GnRH and GnIH neurons in the hypothalamus and their receptors in the pituitary gland are regulated by external and internal signals. It is possible that locally-produced triiodothyronine resulting from the action of type 2 iodothyronine deiodinase on thyroxine stimulates the release of gonadotropins, perhaps by action on GnRH neurons. The function of GnRH neurons is also regulated by transcription of the GnRH gene. Melatonin, a nocturnal hormone, stimulates the synthesis and release of GnIH and GnIH may therefore regulate a daily rhythm of gonadotropin secretion. GnIH may also temporally suppress gonadotropin secretion when environmental conditions are unfavorable. Environmental and social milieus fluctuate seasonally in the wild. Accordingly, complex interactions of various neuronal and hormonal systems need to be considered if we are to understand the mechanisms underlying seasonal reproduction.

  5. Quantifying drivers of population dynamics for a migratory bird throughout the annual cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rushing, Clark S; Ryder, Thomas B; Marra, Peter P

    2016-01-27

    Worldwide, migratory species are undergoing rapid declines but understanding the factors driving these declines is hindered by missing information about migratory connectivity and the lack of data to quantify environmental processes across the annual cycle. Here, we combined range-wide information about migratory connectivity with global remote-sensing data to quantify the relative importance of breeding and non-breeding environmental processes to persistent long-term population declines of a migratory songbird, the wood thrush (Hylocichla mustelina). Consistent with theoretical predictions about population limitation of migratory birds, our results suggest that habitat loss and climate have contributed to the observed declines in wood thrush breeding abundance, yet the relative importance of breeding versus non-breeding factors is population-specific. For example, high-abundance core breeding populations appear to be more limited by habitat loss, whereas low-abundance, peripheral populations appear to be limited by climate-driven seasonal interactions. Further, our analysis indicates that the relative impact of breeding habitat loss is at least three to six times greater than the impact of equivalent non-breeding habitat loss and therefore the steepest regional declines have likely been driven by the loss of breeding habitat. These results underscore the need for population-specific conservation strategies implemented throughout the annual cycle to reverse long-term declines. PMID:26817774

  6. Four Square Mile Survey breeding population report for 2001

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Production report of Four Square Mile Survey breeding population estimates for 13 species of ducks. Data includes summaries of breeding population estimates...

  7. Oak Ridge Reservation Bird Records and Population Trends

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roy, W. K. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Giffen, N. R. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Wade, M. C. [CDM Smith (United States); Haines, A. M. [Xcel Engineering, Inc.(United States); Evans, J. W. [Tennessee WIldlife Resources Agency (WRA), Nashville, TN (United States); Jett, R. T. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)

    2014-09-01

    Bird data have been collected through surveys, environmental assessments, and other observations for decades in the Oak Ridge National Environmental Research Park, located on the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) in East Tennessee. Birds were recorded in a variety of habitats, including wetlands, interior forests, grasslands, ponds, corridors, forest edges, and more. Most of the information was gathered from waterfowl surveys conducted from 1990 to 2008, from Partners in Flight (PIF) breeding bird surveys conducted from 1995 to 2013, and from past publications and research on Reservation birds. We have also included our own observations and, in a few instances, credible observations of ORR birds of which we have been made aware through eBird or discussions with area ornithologists and bird watchers. For the period 1950-2014, we were able to document 228 species of birds on the ORR. Several of these species are known from historic records only, while others were not known to have ever occurred on the Reservation until recently. This report does not include PIF breeding bird data from the 2014 season or any records after July 2014. Twenty-two species--approximately 10% of the total number of species observed--have state-listed status in Tennessee as endangered, threatened, or in need of management. Of the 228 species we documented, 120 are believed to be breeding birds on the ORR.

  8. Oak Ridge Reservation Bird Records and Population Trends

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roy, W. Kelly [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Giffen, Neil R. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Wade, Murray [CDM Smith, Inc., Knoxville, TN (United States); Haines, Angelina [Xcel Engineering, Inc., Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Evans, James W. [Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, Nashville, TN (United States); Jett, Robert Trent [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)

    2014-11-01

    Bird data have been collected through surveys, environmental assessments, and other observations for decades in the Oak Ridge National Environmental Research Park, located on the US Department of Energy s Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) in East Tennessee. Birds were recorded in a variety of habitats, including wetlands, interior forests, grasslands, ponds, corridors, forest edges, and more. Most of the information was gathered from waterfowl surveys conducted from 1990 to 2008, from Partners in Flight (PIF) breeding bird surveys conducted from 1995 to 2013, and from past publications and research on Reservation birds. We have also included our own observations and, in a few instances, credible observations of ORR birds of which we have been made aware through eBird or discussions with area ornithologists and bird watchers. For the period 1950 2014, we were able to document 228 species of birds on the ORR. Several of these species are known from historic records only, while others were not known to have ever occurred on the Reservation until recently. This report does not include PIF breeding bird data from the 2014 season or any records after July 2014. Twenty-two species approximately 10% of the total number of species observed have state-listed status in Tennessee as endangered, threatened, or in need of management. Of the 228 species we documented, 120 are believed to be breeding birds on the ORR.

  9. Breeding biology of an afrotropical forest understory bird community in northeastern Tanzania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mkongewa, Victor J.; Newmark, William D.; Stanley, Thomas R.

    2013-01-01

    Many aspects of the breeding biology of Afrotropical forest birds are poorly known. Here we provide a description based on the monitoring of 1461 active nests over eight breeding seasons about one or more aspects of the breeding biology for 28 coexisting understory bird species on the Amani Plateau in the East Usambara Mountains, Tanzania. Mean nest height and mean distance of nest from forest edge varied widely among species with most species constructing nests across a broad vertical and forest edge to interior gradient. However, there were important exceptions with all sunbird species and several dove and waxbill species constructing nests in close proximity to the forest edge. For 17 common species for which we recorded two or more active nests, mean clutch size across species was 1.9 eggs per clutch, the lowest site-specific mean clutch size yet reported for a tropical forest bird community. For nine bird species, a subset of the 17 common species, length of breeding season, defined as the difference between the earliest and latest recorded incubation onset date, ranged from 88–139 days. Most of these nine species displayed a unimodal distribution in incubation onset dates across a breeding season which extended from the end of August through middle January. In summary, a wide variation exists in most aspects of the breeding biology within an understory forest bird community in the East Usambara Mountains.

  10. Energy crop cultivations of reed canary grass - An inferior breeding habitat for the skylark, a characteristic farmland bird species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vepsaelaeinen, Ville [Finnish Museum of Natural History, P.O. Box 17, University of Helsinki, FI-00014 Helsinki (Finland)

    2010-07-15

    Here, I present the first comparison of the abundance of farmland birds in energy grass fields and in cereal-dominated conventionally cultivated fields (CCFs). I demonstrate that in boreal farmland, skylark (Alauda arvensis) densities were significantly lower in reed canary grass (RCG) (Phalaris arundinacea) fields than in CCFs. I found that during the early breeding season RCG fields and CCFs are equally good habitats, but over the ensuing couple of weeks RCG rapidly grows too tall and dense for field-nesting species. Consequently, RCG is an inferior habitat for skylark for laying replacement clutches (after failure of first nesting) or for a second clutch after one successful nesting. The results imply that if RCG cultivation is to be expanded, the establishment of large monocultures should be avoided in farmland landscapes; otherwise the novel habitat may affect detrimentally the seriously depleted skylark population, and probably also other field-nesting bird species with similar breeding habitats. (author)

  11. Familiarity breeds content: assessing bird species popularity with culturomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correia, Ricardo A; Jepson, Paul R; Malhado, Ana C M; Ladle, Richard J

    2016-01-01

    Understanding public perceptions of biodiversity is essential to ensure continued support for conservation efforts. Despite this, insights remain scarce at broader spatial scales, mostly due to a lack of adequate methods for their assessment. The emergence of new technologies with global reach and high levels of participation provide exciting new opportunities to study the public visibility of biodiversity and the factors that drive it. Here, we use a measure of internet saliency to assess the national and international visibility of species within four taxa of Brazilian birds (toucans, hummingbirds, parrots and woodpeckers), and evaluate how much of this visibility can be explained by factors associated with familiarity, aesthetic appeal and conservation interest. Our results strongly indicate that familiarity (human population within the range of a species) is the most important factor driving internet saliency within Brazil, while aesthetic appeal (body size) best explains variation in international saliency. Endemism and conservation status of a species had small, but often negative, effects on either metric of internet saliency. While further studies are needed to evaluate the relationship between internet content and the cultural visibility of different species, our results strongly indicate that internet saliency can be considered as a broad proxy of cultural interest. PMID:26966663

  12. Studies on breeding schemes in a closed pig population.

    OpenAIRE

    Roo, de, A.J.

    1988-01-01

    Size of a population in genetic terms is a function of number of male and female individuals used for breeding over a generation. A breed can be small because of a small total number of individuals but also because of a small number of individuals of one sex. According to this definition, many breeds of livestock, pets and zoo animals are small populations.Breeding scheme designed for finite populations sometimes primarily aim at conservation of animal genetic resources. In most cases, howeve...

  13. Long-term trends in breeding birds in an old-growth Adirondack forest and the surrounding region

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNulty, S.A.; Droege, S.; Masters, R.D.

    2008-01-01

    Breeding bird populations were sampled between 1954 and 1963, and 1990 and 2000 in an old-growth forest, the Natural Area of Huntington Wildlife Forest (HWF), in the Adirondack Mountains of New York. Trends were compared with data from regional North American Breeding Bird Surveys (BBS) and from a forest plot at Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, New Hampshire. Trends for 22 species in the HWF Natural Area were negative, eight were positive, and one was zero; 20 were significant. Fifteen of 17 long-distance migrants declined, whereas 7 of 14 short-distance migrants and permanent residents declined. Most (74%) HWF Natural Area species, despite differences in sampling periods and local habitat features, matched in sign of trend when compared to Adirondack BBS routes, 61% matched northeastern BBS routes, and 71% matched eastern United States BBS routes, while 66% matched Hubbard Brook species. The agreement in population trends suggests that forest interior birds, especially long-distance migrants, are affected more by regional than local factors. The analysis indicated that bird trends generated from BBS routes may not be as biased toward roads as previously suggested.

  14. Bird population trends are linearly affected by climate change along species thermal ranges

    OpenAIRE

    Jiguet, Frédéric; Devictor, Vincent; Ottvall, Richard; Van Turnhout, Chris; van der Jeugd, Henk; Lindström, Åke

    2010-01-01

    Beyond the effects of temperature increase on local population trends and on species distribution shifts, how populations of a given species are affected by climate change along a species range is still unclear. We tested whether and how species responses to climate change are related to the populations locations within the species thermal range. We compared the average 20 year growth rates of 62 terrestrial breeding birds in three European countries along the latitudinal gradient of the spec...

  15. Population viability analysis on domestic horse breeds (Equus caballus)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thirstrup, Janne Pia; Bach, Lars; Loeschcke, Volker;

    2009-01-01

    In this study, we performed a population viability analysis on 3 domestic horse breeds (Equus caballus) of Danish origin, namely, the Frederiksborg, the Knabstrupper, and the Jutland breeds. Because of their small population sizes, these breeds are considered endangered. The Vortex software...... available. The results of this analysis accord with other studies on the Prezwalski horse, indicating robustness in the parameter sensitivity for horses....

  16. Gnezdilke Parka Škocjanske jame (Kras, JZ Slovenija/ The breeding birds of Škocjan Caves Park (Kras, SW Slovenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Figelj Jernej

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study done in 2011 and 2012 was to identify the number of breeding bird species, to provide population estimates as well as to evaluate the conservational importance of Škocjan Caves Park for birds. Common bird species were surveyed using the territory mapping method. Rare species and nocturnally active species were surveyed using species-specific methods: observation, the playback method and the line transect method. 81 species were registered, 49 of which bred within the boundaries of the Park. The most abundant breeding species were Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla (260-320 breeding pairs, Robin Erithacus rubecula (250-310 breeding pairs, Blackbird Turdus merula (230-280 breeding pairs, Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs (230-280 breeding pairs and Marsh Tit Poecile palustris (200-240 breeding pairs. Qualifying species for the Special Protected Area (SPA Kras (SI5000023 also bred within the Park: Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus, Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus, Scops Owl Otus scops and Woodlark Lululla arborea. Eagle Owl Bubo bubo was also registered, but breeding attempts during the study period were unsuccessful due to the negative influence of several factors. One of the largest colonies of Alpine Swifts Apus melba, a rare and localized species in Slovenia, is also of conservation concern.

  17. Evolutionary routes to non-kin cooperative breeding in birds

    OpenAIRE

    Riehl, Christina

    2013-01-01

    Cooperatively breeding animals live in social groups in which some individuals help to raise the offspring of others, often at the expense of their own reproduction. Kin selection—when individuals increase their inclusive fitness by aiding genetic relatives—is a powerful explanation for the evolution of cooperative breeding, particularly because most groups consist of family members. However, recent molecular studies have revealed that many cooperative groups also contain unrelated immigrants...

  18. Cross-seasonal patterns of avian influenza virus in breeding and wintering migratory birds: a flyway perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Nichola J.; Takekawa, John Y.; Cardona, Carol J.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Ackerman, Joshua T.; Runstadler, Jonathan A.; Boyce, Walter M.

    2012-01-01

    The spread of avian influenza viruses (AIV) in nature is intrinsically linked with the movements of wild birds. Wild birds are the reservoirs for the virus and their migration may facilitate the circulation of AIV between breeding and wintering areas. This cycle of dispersal has become widely accepted; however, there are few AIV studies that present cross-seasonal information. A flyway perspective is critical for understanding how wild birds contribute to the persistence of AIV over large spatial and temporal scales, with implications for how to focus surveillance efforts and identify risks to public health. This study characterized spatio-temporal infection patterns in 10,389 waterfowl at two important locations within the Pacific Flyway--breeding sites in Interior Alaska and wintering sites in California's Central Valley during 2007-2009. Among the dabbling ducks sampled, the northern shoveler (Anas clypeata) had the highest prevalence of AIV at both breeding (32.2%) and wintering (5.2%) locations. This is in contrast to surveillance studies conducted in other flyways that have identified the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and northern pintail (Anas acuta) as hosts with the highest prevalence. A higher diversity of AIV subtypes was apparent at wintering (n=42) compared with breeding sites (n=17), with evidence of mixed infections at both locations. Our study suggests that wintering sites may act as an important mixing bowl for transmission among waterfowl in a flyway, creating opportunities for the reassortment of the virus. Our findings shed light on how the dynamics of AIV infection of wild bird populations can vary between the two ends of a migratory flyway.

  19. Adaptive breeding habitat selection: Is it for the birds?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalfoun, Anna D.; Schmidt, Kenneth A.

    2012-01-01

    The question of why animals choose particular habitats has important implications for understanding behavioral evolution and distribution of organisms in the wild and for delineating between habitats of different quality for conservation and management. Habitats chosen by animals can influence fitness outcomes via the costs (e.g., predation risk) and benefits (e.g., food availability) of habitat use. Habitat preferences should therefore be under selection to favor those that confer fitness advantages (Clark and Shutler 1999). Indeed, prevailing theory suggests that the habitat preferences of animals should be adaptive, such that fitness is higher in preferred habitats (Hildén 1965, Southwood 1977, Martin 1998). However, studies have often identified apparent mismatches between observed habitat preferences and fitness outcomes across a wide variety of taxa (Valladares and Lawton 1991, Mayhew 1997, Kolbe and Janzen 2002, Arlt and Pärt 2007, Mägi et al. 2009). Certainly, one limitation of studies may be that assessment of “fitness” is typically constrained to fitness surrogates such as nest success rather than lifetime reproductive success or classic Fisherian fitness (Endler 1986). Nevertheless, important habitat choices such as nest sites influence the probability that temporarily sedentary, dependent young are discovered by enemies such as predators and parasites. We therefore expect, on average, to see congruence between evolved habitat preferences and relevant components of fitness (e.g., nest success). Here, we (1) review the prevalence of apparent mismatches between avian breeding-habitat preferences and fitness outcomes using nest-site selection as a focus; (2) describe several potential mechanisms for such mismatches, including anthropogenic, methodological, and ecological–evolutionary; and (3) suggest a framework for understanding the contexts in which habitat preferences represent adaptive decisions, with a primary focus on ecological information

  20. Artificial cavities enhance breeding bird densities in managed cottonwood forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Twedt, D.J.; Henne-Kerr, J.L.

    2001-01-01

    The paucity of natural cavities within short-rotation hardwood agroforests restricts occupancy by cavity-nesting birds. However, providing 1.6 artificial nesting cavities (nest boxes)/ha within 3- to 10-year-old managed cottonwood forests in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley increased territory density of cavity-nesting birds. Differences in territory densities between forests with and without nest boxes increased as stands aged. Seven bird species initiated 38 nests in 173 boxes during 1997 and 39 nests in 172 boxes during 1998. Prothonotary warblers (Protonotaria citrea) and eastern bluebirds (Sialia sialis) accounted for 67% of nests; nearly all warbler nests were in 1.8-L, plastic-coated cardboard (paper) boxes, whereas bluebird nests were divided between paper boxes and 3.5-L wooden boxes. Larger-volume (16.5-L) wooden nest boxes were used by eastern screech owls (Otus asio) and great crested flycatchers (Myiarchus crinitus), but this box type often was usurped by honey bees (Apis mellifera). To enhance territory densities of cavity-nesting birds in cottonwood agroforests, we recommend placement of plastic-coated paper nest boxes, at a density of 0.5/ha, after trees are >4 years old but at least 2 years before anticipated timber harvest.

  1. Species composition and number of breeding birds in urban parks in Novi Sad

    OpenAIRE

    Tucakov Marko J.

    2010-01-01

    Numbers of breeding pairs of breeding birds and breeding density are established by territory mapping in Limanski (12.9 ha), Futoški (8.26 ha), and Dunavski (3.9 ha) Parks in Novi Sad from early March to late June 2007. In Limanski Park 11 species of breeders were found, the most numerous being tree sparrow (Passer montanus). Futoški Park had 15 breeders and the most numerous were great tit (Parus major). The smallest number of species (9) bred in Dunavski Park, with great tit as the most com...

  2. Studies on breeding schemes in a closed pig population.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roo, de G.

    1988-01-01

    Size of a population in genetic terms is a function of number of male and female individuals used for breeding over a generation. A breed can be small because of a small total number of individuals but also because of a small number of individuals of one sex. According to this definition, many breed

  3. Genomic prediction across dairy cattle populations and breeds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, Lei

    Genomic prediction is successful in single breed genetic evaluation. However, there is no achievement in acoress breed prediction until now. This thesis investigated genomic prediction across populations and breeds using Chinese Holsterin, Nordic Holstein, Norwgian Red, and Nordic Red. Nordic Red...

  4. Reasons for the decline in bird numbers breeding near the Ravenglass Estuary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Black-headed Gulls breeding at Ravenglass (and at other coastal sites in Cumbria) fed exclusively inland during the breeding season and so could not have acquired any radionuclide contaminants present in the estuarine muds and invertebrates. They, and two other ground-nesting bird species have suffered severe disturbance and predation by foxes at Ravenglass in recent years. In contrast, the Shelduck, which nests in holes (and so does not suffer fox predation) but feeds at Ravenglass on estuarine invertebrates, has bred successfully. Levels of heavy metal contaminants in gull tissues and eggs were too low to have caused the observed breeding failures at Ravenglass. Gulls feeding on the estuary before the breeding season, but which then moved to other (inland) breeding sites, nested successfully. (author)

  5. Factors affecting breeding status of wading birds in the Everglades.

    OpenAIRE

    Peter C Frederick; Hylton, Becky; Heath, Julie; Spalding, Marilyn; Babbitt, Greg; Semones, John David

    2002-01-01

    This comprehensive final report summarizes the results of a four-year research and monitoring effort (1998 - 2001) designed to document nesting effort and success by wading birds, and to investigate the reproductive physiology and ecology of White Ibises (Eudocimus albus) in the Everglades ecosystem. The monitoring of nesting has been accomplished bystandardized systematic aerial and ground surveys and study of nesting success of nesting colonies in Water Conservation Areas (WC...

  6. Population-Wide Failure to Breed in the Clark's Nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taza D Schaming

    Full Text Available In highly variable environments, conditions can be so stressful in some years that entire populations forgo reproduction in favor of higher likelihood of surviving to breed in future years. In two out of five years, Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga Columbiana in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem exhibited population-wide failure to breed. Clark's nutcrackers at the study site experienced substantial interannual differences in food availability and weather conditions, and the two nonbreeding years corresponded with low whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis cone crops the previous autumn (≤ an average of 8 ± 2 cones per tree versus ≥ an average of 20 ± 2 cones per tree during breeding years and high snowpack in early spring (≥ 61.2 ± 5.5 cm versus ≤ 51.9 ± 4.4 cm during breeding years. The average adult body condition index during the breeding season was significantly lower in 2011 (-1.5 ± 1.1, a nonbreeding year, as compared to 2012 (6.2 ± 2.0, a breeding year. The environmental cues available to the birds prior to breeding, specifically availability of cached whitebark pine seeds, may have allowed them to predict that breeding conditions would be poor, leading to the decision to skip breeding. Alternatively, the Clark's nutcrackers may have had such low body energy stores that they chose not to or were unable to breed. Breeding plasticity would allow Clark's nutcrackers to exploit an unpredictable environment. However, if large-scale mortality of whitebark pines is leading to an increase in the number of nonbreeding years, there could be serious population-level and ecosystem-wide consequences.

  7. 77 FR 25192 - Wild Bird Conservation Act; Receipt of Application for Approval of a Cooperative Breeding Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-27

    ... Cooperative Breeding Program AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of receipt of... listed birds for scientific research, zoological breeding or display programs, or personal pet purposes, when the applicant meets certain criteria. We also may approve cooperative breeding programs of...

  8. A comparison of landscapes occupied by increasing and decreasing populations of grassland birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veech, Joseph A

    2006-10-01

    For several decades, many grassland bird species have been declining in abundance throughout the Midwest and Great Plains regions of the United States, possibly due to loss of natural grassland habitat and increasing urbanization. I used 20 years of data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey to identify increasing, decreasing, and stable populations of 36 grassland-nesting bird species. I characterized the immediate landscape (circle with radius = 30 km) surrounding each population based on data from the National Resources Inventory. For each landscape, I calculated the proportion of eight different land-cover types: restored grassland, rangeland, cultivated cropland, pasture, noncultivated cropland, forest, urban land, and water. Using a null model, I compared landscape composition of increasing, decreasing, and stable populations. As predicted on the basis of the habitat preferences of grassland birds, increasing populations inhabited landscapes that contained significantly more restored grassland and rangeland but significantly less forest land and urban land than landscapes inhabited by decreasing populations. There was no significant difference in the proportion of cropland within the landscapes of increasing and decreasing populations, although cropland composed a large proportion (>30%) of many landscapes. In contrast, restored grassland typically composed a very small proportion (land cover, yet it was significantly more common in the landscapes of increasing than decreasing populations. These results suggest that grassland birds may benefit from government initiatives, such as the Conservation Reserve Program, that promote the restoration of grassland at a landscape scale. PMID:17002760

  9. Population genetic structure and long-distance dispersal of a recently expanding migratory bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Raül; Song, Gang; Navarro, Joan; Zhang, Ruiying; Symes, Craig T; Forero, Manuela G; Lei, Fumin

    2016-06-01

    Long-distance dispersal events and their derivable increases of genetic diversity have been highlighted as important ecological and evolutionary determinants that improve performances of range-expanding species. In the context of global environmental change, specific dispersal strategies have to be understood and foreseen if we like to prevent general biodiversity impoverishment or the spread of allochthonous diseases. We explored the genetic structure and potential population mixing on the recently range-expanding European bee-eater Merops apiaster. In addition, the species is suspected of harbouring and disseminating the most relevant disease for bees and apiculture, Nosema microsporidia. In agreement with complementary ringing recovery data and morphometric measurements, genetic results on two mitochondrial genes and 12 microsatellites showed a reasonably well-structured population partitioning along its breeding distribution. Microsatellite results indicated that not only did a few birds recently disperse long distance during their return migrations and change their natal breeding areas, but also that a group of allochthonous birds together founded a new colony. Although we did not provide evidence on the direct implication of birds in the widespread of Nosema parasites, our finding on the long-distance dispersal of bird flocks between remote breeding colonies adds concern about the role of European bee-eaters in the spread of such disease at a large, inter-continental scale.

  10. Population genetic structure and long-distance dispersal of a recently expanding migratory bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Raül; Song, Gang; Navarro, Joan; Zhang, Ruiying; Symes, Craig T; Forero, Manuela G; Lei, Fumin

    2016-06-01

    Long-distance dispersal events and their derivable increases of genetic diversity have been highlighted as important ecological and evolutionary determinants that improve performances of range-expanding species. In the context of global environmental change, specific dispersal strategies have to be understood and foreseen if we like to prevent general biodiversity impoverishment or the spread of allochthonous diseases. We explored the genetic structure and potential population mixing on the recently range-expanding European bee-eater Merops apiaster. In addition, the species is suspected of harbouring and disseminating the most relevant disease for bees and apiculture, Nosema microsporidia. In agreement with complementary ringing recovery data and morphometric measurements, genetic results on two mitochondrial genes and 12 microsatellites showed a reasonably well-structured population partitioning along its breeding distribution. Microsatellite results indicated that not only did a few birds recently disperse long distance during their return migrations and change their natal breeding areas, but also that a group of allochthonous birds together founded a new colony. Although we did not provide evidence on the direct implication of birds in the widespread of Nosema parasites, our finding on the long-distance dispersal of bird flocks between remote breeding colonies adds concern about the role of European bee-eaters in the spread of such disease at a large, inter-continental scale. PMID:26994943

  11. Seventeenth breeding-bird census. 34. Diked wet meadow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, C.S.; Boyer, G.F.

    2000-01-01

    Several characteristics of plumage, including color and molt schedule, are influenced by hormonal signals, and hence may be modified by endocrine active contaminants. If so, the functions of plumage (e.g. communication for mating or territorial defense), may be compromised by exposure to such compounds. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are ubiquitous and persistent environmental toxins that can disrupt endocrine function in laboratory animals. Captive American kestrels (Falco sparverius) were fed PCBs (Aroclor 1242) at 6 and 60 ppm, thyroxine at 10 ppm, estradiol at 1.4 ppm, and a thyroid hormone blocker (propylthiouracil: PTU) at 2000 ppm, mixed in their normal diet. Plumage characteristics measured included: the width of the black subterminal band on the tail, brightness (a composite index of hue and saturation), reflectance from 230 - 800 nm (measured on a reflectance spectrophotometer), the pattern of feather loss and regrowth on the tail and wing, and the timing of onset and the duration of molt. PCB-treated birds did not differ from controls, but birds treated with thyroxine were significantly different from those dosed with estradiol or PTU in the width of subterminal tail bands, reflectance, and duration of molt. Thus, although hormone treatments did modify some of the plumage characteristics we measured, PCB treatments at these exposure levels did not.

  12. Seasonal and population variation in male testosterone levels in breeding orange-crowned warblers (Vermivora celata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horton, Brent M; Yoon, Jongmin; Ghalambor, Cameron K; Moore, Ignacio T; Scott Sillett, T

    2010-09-15

    Comparative hormone studies can reveal how physiology underlies life history variation. Here, we examined seasonal variation in plasma testosterone concentration between populations of male orange-crowned warblers (Vermivora celata) breeding in Fairbanks, Alaska (V. c. celata) and on Santa Catalina Island, California (V. c. sordida). These populations face different ecological constraints and exhibit different life histories. Alaska birds have a short breeding season, low annual adult survival, and high reproductive rates. In contrast, Catalina Island birds exhibit high adult survival and low reproductive rates despite having a long breeding season. We examined seasonal variation in male testosterone concentrations as a potential mechanism underlying differences in male reproductive strategies between populations. From 2006 to 2008, we sampled males during the pre-incubation, incubation, and nestling stages. Alaska males exhibited a seasonal testosterone pattern typical of northern passerines: testosterone levels were high during pre-incubation and declined during incubation to low levels during nestling provisioning. Testosterone concentrations in Catalina Island males, however, did not vary consistently with breeding stage, remained elevated throughout the breeding season, and were higher than in Alaska males during the nestling stage. We hypothesize that in Alaska, where short seasons and high adult mortality limit breeding opportunities, the seasonal testosterone pattern facilitates high mating effort prior to incubation, but high parental investment during the nestling stage. On Catalina Island, elevated testosterone levels may reflect the extended mating opportunities and high population density facing males in this population. Our results suggest that population variation in seasonal testosterone patterns in orange-crowned warblers may be a function of differences in life history strategy and the social environment.

  13. Does breeding population trajectory and age of nesting females influence disparate nestling sex ratios in two populations of Cooper's hawks?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenfield, Robert N; Stout, William E; Giovanni, Matthew D; Levine, Noah H; Cava, Jenna A; Hardin, Madeline G; Haynes, Taylor G

    2015-09-01

    Offspring sex ratios at the termination of parental care should theoretically be skewed toward the less expensive sex, which in most avian species would be females, the smaller gender. Among birds, however, raptors offer an unusual dynamic because they exhibit reversed size dimorphism with females being larger than males. And thus theory would predict a preponderance of male offspring. Results for raptors and birds in general have been varied although population-level estimates of sex ratios in avian offspring are generally at unity. Adaptive adjustment of sex ratios in avian offspring is difficult to predict perhaps in part due to a lack of life-history details and short-term investigations that cannot account for precision or repeatability of sex ratios across time. We conducted a novel comparative study of sex ratios in nestling Cooper's hawks (Accipiter cooperii) in two study populations across breeding generations during 11 years in Wisconsin, 2001-2011. One breeding population recently colonized metropolitan Milwaukee and exhibited rapidly increasing population growth, while the ex-Milwaukee breeding population was stable. Following life-history trade-off theory and our prediction regarding this socially monogamous species in which reversed sexual size dimorphism is extreme, first-time breeding one-year-old, second-year females in both study populations produced a preponderance of the smaller and cheaper sex, males, whereas ASY (after-second-year), ≥2-year-old females in Milwaukee produced a nestling sex ratio near unity and predictably therefore a greater proportion of females compared to ASY females in ex-Milwaukee who produced a preponderance of males. Adjustment of sex ratios in both study populations occurred at conception. Life histories and selective pressures related to breeding population trajectory in two age cohorts of nesting female Cooper's hawk likely vary, and it is possible that these differences influenced the sex ratios we documented for

  14. Breeding bird community response to establishing intercropped switchgrass in intensively-managed pine stands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loman, Zachary G.; Riffell, Samuel K.; Wheat, Bradley R.; Miller, Darrin A.; Martin, James A.; Vilella, Francisco

    2014-01-01

    Intercropping switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) between tree rows within young pine (Pinus spp.) plantations is a potential method to generate lignocellulosic biofuel feedstocks within intensively managed forests. Intensively managed pine supports a diverse avian assemblage potentially affected by establishment and maintenance of an annual biomass feedstock via changes in plant communities, dead wood resources, and habitat structure. We sought to understand how establishing switchgrass on an operational scale affects bird communities within intercropped plantations as compared to typical intensively managed loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) forest. We conducted breeding bird point counts using distance sampling for three years (2011–2013) following establishment of intercropped switchgrass stands (6 replicates), traditionally-managed pine plantations, and switchgrass-only plots (0.1 km2 minimum) in Kemper Co., MS. We detected 59 breeding bird species from 11,195 detections. Neotropical migrants and forest-edge associated species were less abundant in intercropped plots than controls the first two years after establishment and more abundant in year three. Short distance migrants and residents were scarce in intercropped and control plots initially, and did not differ between these two treatments in any year. Species associated with pine-grass habitat structure were less abundant initially in intercropped plots, but converged with pine controls in subsequent years. Switchgrass monocultures provided minimal resources for birds. If songbird conservation is a management priority, managers should consider potential reductions of some breeding birds for one to two years following intercropping. It is unclear how these relationships may change outside the breeding season and as stands age.

  15. Consistent response of bird populations to climate change on two continents.

    OpenAIRE

    Stephens, P A; Mason, L.R.; Green, R. E.; Gregory, R. D.; Sauer, J.R.; Alison, J.; Aunins, A.; Brotons, L.; Butchart, S.H.M; Campedelli, T; Chodkiewicz, T.; Chylarecki, P.; Crowe, O.; Elts, J.; Escandell, V.

    2016-01-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity. Large-scale analyses have generally focused on the impacts of climate change on the geographic ranges of species and on phenology, the timing of ecological phenomena. We used long-term monitoring of the abundance of breeding birds across Europe and the United States to produce, for both regions, composite population indices for two groups of species: those for which climate suitability has been either improving or declining since 1980. ...

  16. Switching hemispheres: a new migration strategy for the disjunct Argentinean breeding population of Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belen Garcia-Perez

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Barn Swallows (Hirundo rustica breed almost exclusively in the Northern Hemisphere. However, since the early 1980's, a small disjunct breeding population has become established in eastern Argentina, presumably by birds previously derived from those breeding in North America. Currently, it is unknown where these individuals go following breeding and how they have adjusted to a reversal in phenology. Their austral wintering period corresponds to the breeding period of the northern ancestral population and so they can potentially return to these more traditional breeding sites or they may occupy other South American wintering regions left vacant by conspecifics returning to the Northern Hemisphere. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used a three-isotope (δ(13C, δ(15N, δ(2H approach to investigate potential wintering areas in Central and South America of individuals breeding in Argentina. Feather isotope values differed from those expected and measured at local breeding sites in Argentina indicating molt after the austral breeding period and away from the breeding grounds. Potential molting origins were identified applying likelihood-based assignment methods to a δ(2H isoscape for South America and dichotomous prior information on the distribution of C3 and C4 vegetation types based on modeled vegetation-δ(13C values. Barn Swallows now breeding in Argentina have changed their migratory behavior but presumably use the same cues as those used by the ancestral population, molting their feathers during the austral winter, likely in north-eastern South America.

  17. Reconnaissance of breeding marine birds and mammals in the Latax Rocks and Perenosa Bay, Shuyak-Afognak Islands

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report describes survey efforts on Latax Rocks and Perenosa Bay, Shuyak-Afrognak Island for breeding marine birds and mammals. Methods, result and discussion...

  18. Recent Shift in Climate Relationship Enables Prediction of the Timing of Bird Breeding.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shelley A Hinsley

    Full Text Available Large-scale climate processes influence many aspects of ecology including breeding phenology, reproductive success and survival across a wide range of taxa. Some effects are direct, for example, in temperate-zone birds, ambient temperature is an important cue enabling breeding effort to coincide with maximum food availability, and earlier breeding in response to warmer springs has been documented in many species. In other cases, time-lags of up to several years in ecological responses have been reported, with effects mediated through biotic mechanisms such as growth rates or abundance of food supplies. Here we use 23 years of data for a temperate woodland bird species, the great tit (Parus major, breeding in deciduous woodland in eastern England to demonstrate a time-lagged linear relationship between the on-set of egg laying and the winter index of the North Atlantic Oscillation such that timing can be predicted from the winter index for the previous year. Thus the timing of bird breeding (and, by inference, the timing of spring events in general can be predicted one year in advance. We also show that the relationship with the winter index appears to arise through an abiotic time-lag with local spring warmth in our study area. Examining this link between local conditions and larger-scale processes in the longer-term showed that, in the past, significant relationships with the immediately preceding winter index were more common than those with the time-lagged index, and especially so from the late 1930s to the early 1970s. However, from the mid 1970s onwards, the time-lagged relationship has become the most significant, suggesting a recent change in climate patterns. The strength of the current time-lagged relationship suggests that it might have relevance for other temperature-dependent ecological relationships.

  19. Recent Shift in Climate Relationship Enables Prediction of the Timing of Bird Breeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinsley, Shelley A; Bellamy, Paul E; Hill, Ross A; Ferns, Peter N

    2016-01-01

    Large-scale climate processes influence many aspects of ecology including breeding phenology, reproductive success and survival across a wide range of taxa. Some effects are direct, for example, in temperate-zone birds, ambient temperature is an important cue enabling breeding effort to coincide with maximum food availability, and earlier breeding in response to warmer springs has been documented in many species. In other cases, time-lags of up to several years in ecological responses have been reported, with effects mediated through biotic mechanisms such as growth rates or abundance of food supplies. Here we use 23 years of data for a temperate woodland bird species, the great tit (Parus major), breeding in deciduous woodland in eastern England to demonstrate a time-lagged linear relationship between the on-set of egg laying and the winter index of the North Atlantic Oscillation such that timing can be predicted from the winter index for the previous year. Thus the timing of bird breeding (and, by inference, the timing of spring events in general) can be predicted one year in advance. We also show that the relationship with the winter index appears to arise through an abiotic time-lag with local spring warmth in our study area. Examining this link between local conditions and larger-scale processes in the longer-term showed that, in the past, significant relationships with the immediately preceding winter index were more common than those with the time-lagged index, and especially so from the late 1930s to the early 1970s. However, from the mid 1970s onwards, the time-lagged relationship has become the most significant, suggesting a recent change in climate patterns. The strength of the current time-lagged relationship suggests that it might have relevance for other temperature-dependent ecological relationships.

  20. The ascent of cat breeds: genetic evaluations of breeds and worldwide random-bred populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipinski, Monika J; Froenicke, Lutz; Baysac, Kathleen C; Billings, Nicholas C; Leutenegger, Christian M; Levy, Alon M; Longeri, Maria; Niini, Tirri; Ozpinar, Haydar; Slater, Margaret R; Pedersen, Niels C; Lyons, Leslie A

    2008-01-01

    The diaspora of the modern cat was traced with microsatellite markers from the presumed site of domestication to distant regions of the world. Genetic data were derived from over 1100 individuals, representing 17 random-bred populations from five continents and 22 breeds. The Mediterranean was reconfirmed to be the probable site of domestication. Genetic diversity has remained broad throughout the world, with distinct genetic clustering in the Mediterranean basin, Europe/America, Asia and Africa. However, Asian cats appeared to have separated early and expanded in relative isolation. Most breeds were derived from indigenous cats of their purported regions of origin. However, the Persian and Japanese bobtail were more aligned with European/American than with Mediterranean basin or Asian clusters. Three recently derived breeds were not distinct from their parental breeds of origin. Pure breeding was associated with a loss of genetic diversity; however, this loss did not correlate with breed popularity or age.

  1. Terrestrial bird populations and habitat use on coastal plain tundra of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Presents results of four breeding season and three post-breeding season bird surveys conducted on 45 10-ha plots representing seven habitat types study sites on the...

  2. Effects of Habitat Manipulation on Grassland Bird Populations

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Because of continuing concern over the decline of grassland bird populations in the Northeast, and the fact that many management activities designed to increase...

  3. Potential Sensitivity of Québec's Breeding Birds to Climate Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Luc DesGranges

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available We examined the relationship between climatic factors and the distribution of breeding birds in southern Québec, Canada to identify the species whose distribution renders them potentially sensitive to climate change in the study area. We determined the degree of association between the distribution of 65 breeding bird species (601 presence-absence squares of the Atlas of the Breeding Birds of Québec and climate variables (212 climatological stations in operation for at least 20 years over the period 1953-1984 by statistically correcting for the effects of several factors that are correlated with bird distribution. Factors considered were the nature and scale of land cover patterns that included vegetation types and landscape characterization, geographical coordinates, and elevation. Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA was used to investigate the effect of climatic variables on breeding bird distribution. Independent variables accounted for a total of 29.1% of the variation in the species matrix. A very large portion of the variance explained by climate variables was shared with spatial variables, reflecting the relationships among latitude, longitude, elevation, and climate. After correcting for the effect of land cover variables, climatic variables still explained 11.4% of the variation in the species matrix, with temperature, i.e., warmer summers and milder winters, having a greater influence than precipitation, i.e., wetter summers. Of the 65 species, 14 appeared to be particularly climate-sensitive. Eight are insectivorous neotropical migrants and six species are at the northern limit of their range in the study area. The opposite is largely true for the eight others; they are practically absent from the southern part of the study area, except for the Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis, which is widespread there. The White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis is the only resident species that seemed responsive to climatic variables, i

  4. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nell, Lucas A; Frederick, Peter C; Mazzotti, Frank J; Vliet, Kent A; Brandt, Laura A

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction. PMID:26934602

  5. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas A Nell

    Full Text Available Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis, apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction.

  6. Population size of snowy plovers breeding in North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Susan M.; Lyons, James E.; Andres, Brad A.; T-Smith, Elise Elliot; Palacios, Eduardo; Cavitt, John F.; Royle, J. Andrew; Fellows, Suzanne D.; Maty, Kendra; Howe, William H.; Mellink, Eric; Melvin, Stefani; Zimmerman, Tara

    2012-01-01

    Snowy Plovers (Charadrius nivosus) may be one of the rarest shorebirds in North America yet a comprehensive assessment of their abundance and distribution has not been completed. During 2007 and 2008, 557 discrete wetlands were surveyed and nine additional large wetland complexes sampled in México and the USA. From these surveys, a population of 23,555 (95% CI = 17,299 – 29,859) breeding Snowy Plovers was estimated. Combining the estimate with information from areas not surveyed, the total North American population was assessed at 25,869 (95% CI = 18,917 – 32,173). Approximately 42% of all breeding Snowy Plovers in North America resided at two sites (Great Salt Lake, Utah, and Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, Oklahoma), and 33% of all these were on wetlands in the Great Basin (including Great Salt Lake). Also, coastal habitats in central and southern Texas supported large numbers of breeding plovers. New breeding sites were discovered in interior deserts and highlands and along the Pacific coast of México; approximately 9% of the North American breeding population occurred in México. Because of uncertainties about effects of climate change and current stresses to breeding habitats, the species should be a management and conservation priority. Periodic monitoring should be undertaken at important sites to ensure high quality habitat is available to support the Snowy Plover population.

  7. Heart rate responses provide an objective evaluation of human disturbance stimuli in breeding birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellenberg, Ursula; Mattern, Thomas; Seddon, Philip J

    2013-01-01

    Intuition is a poor guide for evaluating the effects of human disturbance on wildlife. Using the endangered Yellow-eyed penguin, Megadyptes antipodes, as an example, we show that heart rate responses provide an objective tool to evaluate human disturbance stimuli and encourage the wider use of this simple and low-impact approach. Yellow-eyed penguins are a flagship species for New Zealand's wildlife tourism; however, unregulated visitor access has recently been associated with reduced breeding success and lower first year survival. We measured heart rate responses of Yellow-eyed penguins via artificial eggs to evaluate a range of human stimuli regularly occurring at their breeding sites. We found the duration of a stimulus to be the most important factor, with elevated heart rate being sustained while a person remained within sight. Human activity was the next important component; a simulated wildlife photographer, crawling slowly around during his stay, elicited a significantly higher heart rate response than an entirely motionless human spending the same time at the same distance. Stimuli we subjectively might perceive as low impact, such as the careful approach of a 'wildlife photographer', resulted in a stronger response than a routine nest-check that involved lifting a bird up to view nest contents. A single, slow-moving human spending 20 min within 2 m from the nest may provoke a response comparable to that of 10 min handling a bird for logger deployment. To reduce cumulative impact of disturbance, any human presence in the proximity of Yellow-eyed penguins needs to be kept at a minimum. Our results highlight the need for objective quantification of the effects of human disturbance in order to provide a sound basis for guidelines to manage human activity around breeding birds. PMID:27293597

  8. Song diversity predicts the viability of fragmented bird populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Laiolo

    Full Text Available In the global scenario of increasing habitat fragmentation, finding appropriate indicators of population viability is a priority for conservation. We explored the potential of learned behaviours, specifically acoustic signals, to predict the persistence over time of fragmented bird populations. We found an association between male song diversity and the annual rate of population change, population productivity and population size, resulting in birds singing poor repertoires in populations more prone to extinction. This is the first demonstration that population viability can be predicted by a cultural trait (acquired via social learning. Our results emphasise that cultural attributes can reflect not only individual-level characteristics, but also the emergent population-level properties. This opens the way to the study of animal cultural diversity in the increasingly common human-altered landscapes.

  9. Predators and the breeding bird: behavioral and reproductive flexibility under the risk of predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Steven L

    2009-08-01

    A growing body of work suggests that breeding birds have a significant capacity to assess and respond, over ecological time, to changes in the risk of predation to both themselves and their eggs or nestlings. This review investigates the nature of this flexibility in the face of predation from both behavioural and reproductive perspectives, and also explores several directions for future research. Most available work addresses different aspects of nest predation. A substantial change in breeding location is perhaps the best documented response to nest predation, but such changes are not always observed and not necessarily the best strategy. Changes in nesting microhabitat (to more concealed locations) following predation are known to occur. Surprisingly little work addresses the proactive avoidance of areas with many nest predators, but such avoidance is probably widespread. Individual birds could conceivably adopt anti-predator strategies based on the nest predators actually present in an area, but such effects have yet to be demonstrated. In fact, the ways in which birds assess the risk of nest predation is unclear. Nest defence in birds has historically received much attention, but little is known about how it interacts with other aspects of decision-making by parents. Other studies concentrate on predation risk to adults. Some findings suggest that risk to adults themselves influences territory location, especially relative to raptor nests. An almost completely unexplored area concerns the sorts of social protection from predators that might exist during the breeding season. Flocking typical of the non-breeding season appears unusual while breeding, but a mated pair may sometimes act as a "flock of two". Opportunistic heterospecific sociality may exist, with heterospecific protector species associations more prevalent than currently appreciated. The dynamics of singing during the breeding season may also respond to variation in predation risk, but empirical

  10. Comparative morphology among northern populations of breeding Cooper's Hawks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenfield, Robert N.; Rosenfield, Laura J.; Bielefeldt, John; Murphy, Robert K.; Stewart, Andrew C.; Stout, William E.; Driscoll, Timothy G.; Bozek, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    Few studies at a broad geographical scale have characterized intraspecific variation in morphology of woodland hawks in the genus Accipiter. From 1999 to 2007 we investigated morphological variation in large samples of live Cooper's Hawks (A. cooperii) nesting in four study areas: coniferous woodland around Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, isolated deciduous woodlands in short-grass prairies of northwestern North Dakota, towns and rural deciduous woodlands along the border of North Dakota and Minnesota, and urban and rural mixed deciduous and coniferous landscapes of Wisconsin. These sites span 2660 km across the northern part of the species' breeding range. We measured body mass (i.e., size), wing chord, tail length, tarsus diameter, hallux length, and culmen length of breeding adults, finding significant and clinal variation in body mass (or size). The smallest and most similar-sized birds occurred in British Columbia and western North Dakota, larger birds along the border between North Dakota and Minnesota, and the largest birds in Wisconsin. Several other characters varied significantly when mass was used as a covariate. Variation by study site in mean indices of sexual size dimorphism was negligible and not significant. We speculate that the morphological differences we found, in part, are the result of geographic isolation, where diets, migratory behavior, and structural characteristics of nesting habitats vary across landscape types.

  11. Demographic mechanism of a historical bird population collapse reconstructed using museum specimens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Rhys E

    2008-10-22

    Long-term studies of demographic rates provide clues about the external causes of animal population declines, but systematic monitoring is rarely in place until after the decline has occurred. This study evaluates alternative hypotheses about the demographic mechanisms underlying the historical collapse of corncrake (Crexcrex) populations in Britain and Ireland in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries using characteristics of museum specimens. The proportion of adult corncrakes that are 1-year old was estimated from feather characteristics of birds collected before, during and after the population decline and showed a marked transitory reduction during the decline. This pattern would be expected if the decline was caused by a large reduction in the recruitment of young birds to the breeding population and is the opposite of what would be expected if a change in adult survival had caused the decline. These results are consistent with previous suggestions that the corncrake population decline was caused by adverse effects on breeding productivity caused by the mechanization of the harvesting of hay crops.

  12. Loss of sagebrush ecosystems and declining bird populations in the Intermountain West: Priority research issues and information needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey

    2002-01-01

    Sagebrush lands in the Intermountain West are declining rapidly in quality and extent. Consequently, populations of many bird species dependent on these ecosystems also are declining. The greater sage-grouse has been petitioned for listing as a threatened and endangered species, and other species of sagebrush-obligate birds have special conservation status in most states. We identified the primary issues and information needs during a multi-agency workshop, conducted in response to concerns by management agencies related to declining bird population trends in sagebrush habitats. Priority needs were to (1) obtain a better understanding of bird response to habitat and landscape features, (2) develop monitoring designs to sample habitats and bird populations, (3) determine the effects of land use on sagebrush habitats and dependent bird species, and (4) identify linkages between breeding and wintering ranges. This agenda will identify causes and mechanisms of population declines in birds dependent on sagebrush ecosystems and will lead to better management of the ecosystems upon which they depend.

  13. A method for investigating population declines of migratory birds using stable isotopes: origins of harvested lesser scaup in North America.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keith A Hobson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Elucidating geographic locations from where migratory birds are recruited into adult breeding populations is a fundamental but largely elusive goal in conservation biology. This is especially true for species that breed in remote northern areas where field-based demographic assessments are logistically challenging. METHODOLOGY/FINDINGS: Here we used hydrogen isotopes (deltaD to determine natal origins of migrating hatch-year lesser scaup (Aythya affinis harvested by hunters in the United States from all North American flyways during the hunting seasons of 1999-2000 (n = 412 and 2000-2001 (n = 455. We combined geospatial, observational, and analytical data sources, including known scaup breeding range, deltaD values of feathers from juveniles at natal sites, models of deltaD for growing-season precipitation, and scaup band-recovery data to generate probabilistic natal origin landscapes for individual scaup. We then used Monte Carlo integration to model assignment uncertainty from among individual deltaD variance estimates from birds of known molt origin and also from band-return data summarized at the flyway level. We compared the distribution of scaup natal origin with the distribution of breeding population counts obtained from systematic long-term surveys. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our analysis revealed that the proportion of young scaup produced in the northern (above 60 degrees N versus the southern boreal and Prairie-Parkland region was inversely related to the proportions of breeding adults using these regions, suggesting that despite having a higher relative abundance of breeding adults, the northern boreal region was less productive for scaup recruitment into the harvest than more southern biomes. Our approach for evaluating population declines of migratory birds (particularly game birds synthesizes all available distributional data and exploits the advantages of intrinsic isotopic markers that link individuals to geography.

  14. Time to extinction of bird populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sæther, B-E.; Engen, S.; Møller, A.P.; Visser, M.E.; Matthysen, E.; Fiedler, W.; Lambrechts, M.M.; Becker, P.H.; Brommer, J.E.; Dickinson, J.; du Feu, C.; Gehlbach, F.R.; Merilä, J.; Rendell, W.; Robertson, R.J.; Thomson, D.L.; Török, J.

    2005-01-01

    The risk of extinction of populations has not previously been empirically related to parameters characterizing their population dynamics. To analyze this relationship, we simulated how the distribution of population dynamical characters changed as a function of time, in both the remaining and the ex

  15. Using occupancy models of forest breeding birds to prioritize conservation planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Wan, A. A.; Sullivan, P.J.; Lembo, A.J.; Smith, C.R.; Maerz, J.C.; Lassoie, J.P.; Richmond, M.E.

    2009-01-01

    As urban development continues to encroach on the natural and rural landscape, land-use planners struggle to identify high priority conservation areas for protection. Although knowing where urban-sensitive species may be occurring on the landscape would facilitate conservation planning, research efforts are often not sufficiently designed to make quality predictions at unknown locations. Recent advances in occupancy modeling allow for more precise estimates of occupancy by accounting for differences in detectability. We applied these techniques to produce robust estimates of habitat occupancy for a subset of forest breeding birds, a group that has been shown to be sensitive to urbanization, in a rapidly urbanizing yet biological diverse region of New York State. We found that detection probability ranged widely across species, from 0.05 to 0.8. Our models suggest that detection probability declined with increasing forest fragmentation. We also found that the probability of occupancy of forest breeding birds is negatively influenced by increasing perimeter-area ratio of forest fragments and urbanization in the surrounding habitat matrix. We capitalized on our random sampling design to produce spatially explicit models that predict high priority conservation areas across the entire region, where interior-species were most likely to occur. Finally, we use our predictive maps to demonstrate how a strict sampling design coupled with occupancy modeling can be a valuable tool for prioritizing biodiversity conservation in land-use planning. ?? 2009 Elsevier Ltd.

  16. Population Change in a Marine Bird Colony is Driven By Changes in Recruitment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony J. Gaston

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The population dynamics of long-lived birds are thought to be very sensitive to changes in adult survival. However, where natal philopatry is low, recruitment from the larger metapopulation may have the strongest effect on population growth rate even in long-lived species. Here, we illustrate such a situation where changes in a seabird colony size appeared to be the consequence of changes in recruitment. We studied the population dynamics of a declining colony of Ancient Murrelets (Synthliboramphus antiquus at East Limestone Island, British Columbia. During 1990-2010, Ancient Murrelet chicks were trapped at East Limestone Island while departing to sea, using a standard trapping method carried on throughout the departure period. Adult murrelets were trapped while departing from the colony during 1990-2003. Numbers of chicks trapped declined during 1990-1995, probably because of raccoon predation, increased slightly from 1995-2000 and subsequently declined again. Reproductive success was 30% lower during 2000-2003 than in earlier years, mainly because of an increase in desertions. The proportion of nonbreeders among adult birds trapped at night also declined over the study period. Mortality of adult birds, thought to be mainly prebreeders, from predators more than doubled over the same period. Apparent adult survival of breeders remained constant during 1991-2002 once the first year after banding was excluded, but the apparent survival rates in the first year after banding fell and the survival of birds banded as chicks to age three halved over the same period. A matrix model of population dynamics suggested that even during the early part of the study immigration from other breeding areas must have been substantial, supporting earlier observations that natal philopatry in this species is low. The general colony decline after 2000 probably was related to diminished recruitment, as evidenced by the lower proportion of nonbreeders in the trapped

  17. Endocrine status of a migratory bird potentially exposed to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill: a case study of northern gannets breeding on Bonaventure Island, Eastern Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franci, Cynthia D; Guillemette, Magella; Pelletier, Emilien; Chastel, Olivier; Bonnefoi, Salomé; Verreault, Jonathan

    2014-03-01

    The Deepwater Horizon oil spill caused the death of a large number of seabirds in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. However, the long term consequences of oil exposure on migratory birds overwintering in this area have received limited attention. The present study aimed to investigate the impact of oil contamination (e.g., polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)) on the circulating status of prolactin and corticosterone, two hormones that influence reproductive success in birds, in Northern gannets (Morus bassanus) breeding on Bonaventure Island, Eastern Canada. Using light-based geolocators, it was found that 23.5% of Northern gannets from Bonaventure Island overwintered in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010-2011; the remainder of this population overwintered along the Atlantic Coast of the United States. PAH concentrations (eight compounds) in gannet blood cells were all found to be under the method limits of quantification, which could be the result of the ability of seabirds to metabolize these compounds and the time elapsed between oil exposure and blood sampling. Corticosterone and prolactin levels as well as body mass did not differ between the two major birds' wintering sites. Moreover, levels of both these hormones did not vary from early to late incubation period. Present results suggest that if Bonaventure Island-breeding Northern gannets had been exposed to oil in the Gulf of Mexico in the aftermath of this historical spill, this exposure could not be associated with changes in hormonal status and body mass in breeding individuals.

  18. Shortening day length as a previously unrecognized selective pressure for early breeding in a bird with long parental care

    OpenAIRE

    Podlaszczuk, Marcin; Wojciechowski, Zbigniew; Podlaszczuk, Patrycja; Minias, Piotr; Janiszewski, Tomasz; Wojciechowska, Agnieszka

    2014-01-01

    Several different selective pressures have been suggested to explain an intense competition for early return to breeding grounds in birds. In this study we hypothesized that shortening day length during summer months may constitute additional selective force acting towards early breeding in avian species with long parental care. To test this hypothesis, we studied time budget and foraging activities of early-nesting and late-nesting white storks Ciconia ciconia from th...

  19. Strategic Grassland Bird Conservation throughout the Annual Cycle: Linking Policy Alternatives, Landowner Decisions, and Biological Population Outcomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan G Drum

    Full Text Available Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds.

  20. Strategic Grassland Bird Conservation throughout the annual cycle: Linking policy alternatives, landowner decisions, and biological population outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drum, Ryan G.; Ribic, Christine; Koch, Katie; Lonsdorf, Eric V.; Grant, Edward C.; Ahlering, Marissa; Barnhill, Laurel; Dailey, Thomas; Lor, Socheata; Mueller, Connie; Pavlacky, D.C.; Rideout, Catherine; Sample, David W.

    2015-01-01

    Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM) workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration) were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds.

  1. Strategic Grassland Bird Conservation throughout the Annual Cycle: Linking Policy Alternatives, Landowner Decisions, and Biological Population Outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drum, Ryan G; Ribic, Christine A; Koch, Katie; Lonsdorf, Eric; Grant, Evan; Ahlering, Marissa; Barnhill, Laurel; Dailey, Thomas; Lor, Socheata; Mueller, Connie; Pavlacky, David C; Rideout, Catherine; Sample, David

    2015-01-01

    Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM) workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration) were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds. PMID:26569108

  2. Predicting breeding bird occurrence by stand- and microhabitat-scale features in even-aged stands in the Central Appalachians

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, M.E.; Wood, P.B.; Miller, G.W.; Simpson, B.T.

    2011-01-01

    Spatial scale is an important consideration when managing forest wildlife habitat, and models can be used to improve our understanding of these habitats at relevant scales. Our objectives were to determine whether stand- or microhabitat-scale variables better predicted bird metrics (diversity, species presence, and abundance) and to examine breeding bird response to clearcut size and age in a highly forested landscape. In 2004-2007, vegetation data were collected from 62 even-aged stands that were 3.6-34.6. ha in size and harvested in 1963-1990 on the Monongahela National Forest, WV, USA. In 2005-2007, we also surveyed birds at vegetation plots. We used classification and regression trees to model breeding bird habitat use with a suite of stand and microhabitat variables. Among stand variables, elevation, stand age, and stand size were most commonly retained as important variables in guild and species models. Among microhabitat variables, medium-sized tree density and tree species diversity most commonly predicted bird presence or abundance. Early successional and generalist bird presence, abundance, and diversity were better predicted by microhabitat variables than stand variables. Thus, more intensive field sampling may be required to predict habitat use for these species, and management may be needed at a finer scale. Conversely, stand-level variables had greater utility in predicting late-successional species occurrence and abundance; thus management decisions and modeling at this scale may be suitable in areas with a uniform landscape, such as our study area. Our study suggests that late-successional breeding bird diversity can be maximized long-term by including harvests >10. ha in size into our study area and by increasing tree diversity. Some harvesting will need to be incorporated regularly, because after 15 years, the study stands did not provide habitat for most early successional breeding specialists. ?? 2010 Elsevier B.V.

  3. Post-breeding bird responses to canopy tree retention, stand size, and edge in regenerating Appalachian hardwood stands

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, M.E.; Wood, P.B.

    2011-01-01

    Avian use of even-aged timber harvests is likely affected by stand attributes such as size, amount of edge, and retained basal area, all characteristics that can easily be manipulated in timber harvesting plans. However, few studies have examined their effects during the post-breeding period. We studied the impacts of clearcut, low-leave two-age, and high-leave two-age harvesting on post-breeding birds using transect sampling and mist-netting in north-central West Virginia. In our approach, we studied the effects of these harvest types as well as stand size and edge on species characteristic of both early-successional and mature forest habitats. In 2005-2006, 13 stands ranging from 4 to 10. years post-harvest and 4-21. ha in size were sampled from late June through mid-August. Capture rates and relative abundance were similar among treatments for generalist birds. Early-successional birds had the lowest capture rates and fewer species (~30% lower), and late-successional birds reached their highest abundance and species totals (double the other treatments) in high-leave two-age stands. Area sensitivity was evident for all breeding habitat groups. Both generalist and late-successional bird captures were negatively related to stand size, but these groups showed no clear edge effects. Mean relative abundance decreased to nearly zero for the latter group in the largest stands. In contrast, early-successional species tended to use stand interiors more often and responded positively to stand size. Capture rates for this group tripled as stand size increased from 4 to 21. ha. Few birds in the forest periphery responded to harvest edge types despite within-stand edge effects evident for several species. To create suitable habitat for early-successional birds, large, non-linear openings with a low retained basal area are ideal, while smaller harvests and increased residual tree retention would provide habitat for more late-successional birds post-breeding. Although our study

  4. How cooperatively breeding birds identify relatives and avoid incest: New insights into dispersal and kin recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riehl, Christina; Stern, Caitlin A

    2015-12-01

    Cooperative breeding in birds typically occurs when offspring - usually males - delay dispersal from their natal group, remaining with the family to help rear younger kin. Sex-biased dispersal is thought to have evolved in order to reduce the risk of inbreeding, resulting in low relatedness between mates and the loss of indirect fitness benefits for the dispersing sex. In this review, we discuss several recent studies showing that dispersal patterns are more variable than previously thought, often leading to complex genetic structure within cooperative avian societies. These empirical findings accord with recent theoretical models suggesting that sex- biased dispersal is neither necessary, nor always sufficient, to prevent inbreeding. The ability to recognize relatives, primarily by learning individual or group-specific vocalizations, may play a more important role in incest avoidance than currently appreciated.

  5. How cooperatively breeding birds identify relatives and avoid incest: New insights into dispersal and kin recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riehl, Christina; Stern, Caitlin A

    2015-12-01

    Cooperative breeding in birds typically occurs when offspring - usually males - delay dispersal from their natal group, remaining with the family to help rear younger kin. Sex-biased dispersal is thought to have evolved in order to reduce the risk of inbreeding, resulting in low relatedness between mates and the loss of indirect fitness benefits for the dispersing sex. In this review, we discuss several recent studies showing that dispersal patterns are more variable than previously thought, often leading to complex genetic structure within cooperative avian societies. These empirical findings accord with recent theoretical models suggesting that sex- biased dispersal is neither necessary, nor always sufficient, to prevent inbreeding. The ability to recognize relatives, primarily by learning individual or group-specific vocalizations, may play a more important role in incest avoidance than currently appreciated. PMID:26577076

  6. Climate Change Influences on Antarctic Bird Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korczak-Abshire, Małgorzata

    2010-01-01

    Rapid changes in the major environmental variables like: temperature, wind and precipitation have occurred in the Antarctic region during the last 50 years. In this very sensitive region, even small changes can potentially lead to major environmental perturbations. Then the climate change poses a new challenge to the survival of Antarctic wildlife. As important bioindicators of changes in the ecosystem seabirds and their response to the climate perturbations have been recorded. Atmospheric warming and consequent changes in sea ice conditions have been hypothesized to differentially affect predator populations due to different predator life-history strategies and substantially altered krill recruitment dynamics.

  7. Using Christmas Bird Count data in analysis of population change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, J.R.; Link, W.A.

    2002-01-01

    The scientific credibility of Christmas Bird Count (CBC) results depend on the development and implementation of appropriate methods of statistical analysis. The key to any successful analysis of CBC data is to begin with a careful review of how the limitations of the data are likely to influence the results of the analysis, then to choose methods of analysis that accommodate as much as possible the limitations of the survey. For our analyses of CBC data, we develop a flexible model for effort adjustment and use information from the data to guide the selection of the best model. We include geographic structuring to accommodate the regional variation in number of samples, use a model that allows for overdispersed poisson data appropriate for counts, and employ empirical Bayes procedures to accommodate differences in quality of information in regional summaries. This generalized linear model approach is very flexible, and can be applied to a variety of studies focused on factors influencing wintering bird populations. In particular, the model can be easily modified to contain covariates, allowing for assessment of associations between CBC counts and winter weather, disturbance, and a variety of other environmental factors. These new survey analysis methods have added value in that they provide insights into changes in survey design that can enhance the value of the information. The CBC has been extremely successful as a tool for increasing public interest in birding and bird conservation. Use of the information for bird conservation creates new demands on quality of information, and it is important to maintain a dialogue between users of the information, information needs for the analyses, and survey coordinators and participants. Our work as survey analysts emphasizes the value and limitations of existing data, and provides some indications of what features of the survey could be modified to make the survey a more reliable source of bird population data. Surveys

  8. Emerging infectious disease leads to rapid population declines of common British birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert A Robinson

    Full Text Available Emerging infectious diseases are increasingly cited as threats to wildlife, livestock and humans alike. They can threaten geographically isolated or critically endangered wildlife populations; however, relatively few studies have clearly demonstrated the extent to which emerging diseases can impact populations of common wildlife species. Here, we report the impact of an emerging protozoal disease on British populations of greenfinch Carduelis chloris and chaffinch Fringilla coelebs, two of the most common birds in Britain. Morphological and molecular analyses showed this to be due to Trichomonas gallinae. Trichomonosis emerged as a novel fatal disease of finches in Britain in 2005 and rapidly became epidemic within greenfinch, and to a lesser extent chaffinch, populations in 2006. By 2007, breeding populations of greenfinches and chaffinches in the geographic region of highest disease incidence had decreased by 35% and 21% respectively, representing mortality in excess of half a million birds. In contrast, declines were less pronounced or absent in these species in regions where the disease was found in intermediate or low incidence. Also, populations of dunnock Prunella modularis, which similarly feeds in gardens, but in which T. gallinae was rarely recorded, did not decline. This is the first trichomonosis epidemic reported in the scientific literature to negatively impact populations of free-ranging non-columbiform species, and such levels of mortality and decline due to an emerging infectious disease are unprecedented in British wild bird populations. This disease emergence event demonstrates the potential for a protozoan parasite to jump avian host taxonomic groups with dramatic effect over a short time period.

  9. Extra-pair paternity in birds: explaining variation between species and populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrie, M; Kempenaers, B

    1998-02-01

    Molecular techniques used to assign paternity have revealed previously unknown incidences of extra-pair paternity in socially monogamous bird species. DNA fingerprinting has now been used sufficiently often for mating-system biologists to appreciate the natural variation in the frequency of broods showing extra-pair young. The variation between species and between populations of the same species is surprisingly marked. Explaining this variation may help us to understand the factors promoting sexual selection. Recent comparative studies and detailed behavioural studies suggest that factors such as breeding density, genetic variation in the population and the intensity of sexual conflicts determine the costs and benefits to males and females of engaging in extra-pair copulations, and therefore contribute to the variation among populations. PMID:21238200

  10. The potential for typhoon impact on bird populations on the island of Rota, Northern Mariana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ha, C.

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Numerous independent analyses of climate change have suggested that changing weather patterns are resulting in increasing frequency or intensity of hurricanes and typhoons. We explore the relationship between cyclonic event frequency and severity on measures of bird abundance on the island of Rota, in the Northern Mariana Islands to determine if changes in cyclonic event pattern might be related to the local decline of avian species. We developed a database of Rota cyclonic event encounters since 1952 and three primary variables for analysis of cyclonic event behavior were then derived from this data: Time-Between-Typhoon-Encounters, Distance from Rota at closest approach, and Pressure at the center of the cyclonic event at the point of closest approach Three similar smoothed variables were derived relative to each Breeding Bird and Variable Circle Plot census time point. Multivariate general linear models were constructed separately for each bird abundance data set with multiple species as dependent variables and smoothed cyclonic event time-between-encounter, distance-at-closest- point, and central-pressure-at-closest-point as independent variables. Cyclonic event behavior in relation to Rota did not exhibit an increase in frequency, as sometimes perceived, but did show a significant decrease in distance to the island and an increase in intensity as measured by central pressure. Several species abundances showed significant relationships with cyclonic event pressure or distance, including the Mariana Crow, Philippine Turtle Dove, and Rufous Fantail. It appears that changes in cyclonic event “behavior” could be impacting forest-bird populations on Rota. Overall, bird population declines may be due to a combined effect of habitat loss, introduced species pressure, and cyclonic events, where any one of the factors might be enough to tip a species into decline.

  11. [Characteristics of pedigree cat breeding in the Netherlands: breeds, population increase and litter size].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerrits, P O; Huisman, T; Knol, B W

    1999-03-01

    A survey of the Dutch Cat Fancy was carried out to determine reproductive, patterns of pedigree cats. The data of the present study were obtained by questioning the pedigree registers of the cat clubs participating in the foundation 'Overleg Platform van de Nederlandse Cat Fancy'. The Dutch Cat Fancy registers 34 different cat breeds. From 1992 up to 1996 a total of 25.985 litters were registered. Over this period the number of litters increased from 4989 to 5313. Litters from Longhair and Exotic Shorthair cats comprised the biggest group and accounted for 55% of the total number of litters. However, over this period, the number of Longhair and Exotic Shorthair litters decreased by 9%. Litters from British Shorthair, Birman, Maine Coon and Norwegian Forrest Cat increased in number as did litters from small breeds such as Ragdoll, Bengal and Sphynx. Litters from Abyssinian, Siamese, Oriental Shorthair cats remained relatively the same. The average litter size of the total cat population, based on pedigree certificates, was calculated at 3.3 kittens per litter. For different breeds litter size varied from 2.7 (Longhair and Exotic Shorthair) to 4.3 (Burmese and Maine Coon). Taking into account an average age of 14 years, the total Dutch pedigree cat population was estimated at 240,000 viz. about 10% of the total cat population. PMID:10084198

  12. Genetic analysis in the Collaborative Cross breeding population

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Philip, Vivek [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Sokoloff, Greta [ORNL; Ackert-Bicknell, Cheryl [Jackson Laboratory, The, Bar Harbor, ME; Striz, Martin [University of Kentucky, Lexington; Branstetter, Lisa R [ORNL; Beckmann, Melissa [ORNL; Spence, Jason S [ORNL; Jackson, Barbara L [ORNL; Galloway, Leslie D [ORNL; Barker, Gene [ORNL; Wymore, Ann M [Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL); Hunsicker, Patricia R [ORNL; Durtschi, David W [University of Kentucky, Lexington; Shaw, Ginger S [University of Kentucky, Lexington; Shinpock, Sarah G [ORNL; Manly, Kenneth F [University of Kentucky, Lexington; Miller, Darla R [ORNL; Donahue, Kevin [University at Buffalo, NY; Culiat, Cymbeline T [ORNL; Churchill, Gary A [Jackson Laboratory, The, Bar Harbor, ME; Lariviere, William R [University of Pittsburgh; Palmer, Abraham [University of Chicago; O' Hara, Bruce [University of Kentucky; Voy, Brynn H [ORNL; Chesler, Elissa J [ORNL

    2011-01-01

    Genetic reference populations in model organisms are critical resources for systems genetic analysis of disease related phenotypes. The breeding history of these inbred panels may influence detectable allelic and phenotypic diversity. The existing panel of common inbred strains reflects historical selection biases, and existing recombinant inbred panels have low allelic diversity. All such populations may be subject to consequences of inbreeding depression. The Collaborative Cross (CC) is a mouse reference population with high allelic diversity that is being constructed using a randomized breeding design that systematically outcrosses eight founder strains, followed by inbreeding to obtain new recombinant inbred strains. Five of the eight founders are common laboratory strains, and three are wild-derived. Since its inception, the partially inbred CC has been characterized for physiological, morphological, and behavioral traits. The construction of this population provided a unique opportunity to observe phenotypic variation as new allelic combinations arose through intercrossing and inbreeding to create new stable genetic combinations. Processes including inbreeding depression and its impact on allelic and phenotypic diversity were assessed. Phenotypic variation in the CC breeding population exceeds that of existing mouse genetic reference populations due to both high founder genetic diversity and novel epistatic combinations. However, some focal evidence of allele purging was detected including a suggestive QTL for litter size in a location of changing allele frequency. Despite these inescapable pressures, high diversity and precision for genetic mapping remain. These results demonstrate the potential of the CC population once completed and highlight implications for development of related populations. Supplementary material consists of Supplementary Table 1 Phenotypic means, variances, ranges and heritabilities for all traits and generations, Supplementary Table

  13. The relative importance of climate and vegetation properties on patterns of North American breeding bird species richness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goetz, Scott J.; Sun, Mindy; Zolkos, Scott; Hansen, Andy; Dubayah, Ralph

    2014-03-01

    Recent advances in remote sensing and ecological modeling warrant a timely and robust investigation of the ecological variables that underlie large-scale patterns of breeding bird species richness, particularly in the context of intensifying land use and climate change. Our objective was to address this need using an array of bioclimatic and remotely sensed data sets representing vegetation properties and structure, and other aspects of the physical environment. We first build models of bird species richness across breeding bird survey (BBS) routes, and then spatially predict richness across the coterminous US at moderately high spatial resolution (1 km). Predictor variables were derived from various sources and maps of species richness were generated for four groups (guilds) of birds with different breeding habitat affiliation (forest, grassland, open woodland, scrub/shrub), as well as all guilds combined. Predictions of forest bird distributions were strong (R2 = 0.85), followed by grassland (0.76), scrub/shrub (0.63) and open woodland (0.60) species. Vegetation properties were generally the strongest determinants of species richness, whereas bioclimatic and lidar-derived vertical structure metrics were of variable importance and dependent upon the guild type. Environmental variables (climate and the physical environment) were also frequently selected predictors, but canopy structure variables were not as important as expected based on more local to regional scale studies. Relatively sparse sampling of canopy structure metrics from the satellite lidar sensor may have reduced their importance relative to other predictor variables across the study domain. We discuss these results in the context of the ecological drivers of species richness patterns, the spatial scale of bird diversity analyses, and the potential of next generation space-borne lidar systems relevant to vegetation and ecosystem studies. This study strengthens current understanding of bird species

  14. The relative importance of climate and vegetation properties on patterns of North American breeding bird species richness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recent advances in remote sensing and ecological modeling warrant a timely and robust investigation of the ecological variables that underlie large-scale patterns of breeding bird species richness, particularly in the context of intensifying land use and climate change. Our objective was to address this need using an array of bioclimatic and remotely sensed data sets representing vegetation properties and structure, and other aspects of the physical environment. We first build models of bird species richness across breeding bird survey (BBS) routes, and then spatially predict richness across the coterminous US at moderately high spatial resolution (1 km). Predictor variables were derived from various sources and maps of species richness were generated for four groups (guilds) of birds with different breeding habitat affiliation (forest, grassland, open woodland, scrub/shrub), as well as all guilds combined. Predictions of forest bird distributions were strong (R2 = 0.85), followed by grassland (0.76), scrub/shrub (0.63) and open woodland (0.60) species. Vegetation properties were generally the strongest determinants of species richness, whereas bioclimatic and lidar-derived vertical structure metrics were of variable importance and dependent upon the guild type. Environmental variables (climate and the physical environment) were also frequently selected predictors, but canopy structure variables were not as important as expected based on more local to regional scale studies. Relatively sparse sampling of canopy structure metrics from the satellite lidar sensor may have reduced their importance relative to other predictor variables across the study domain. We discuss these results in the context of the ecological drivers of species richness patterns, the spatial scale of bird diversity analyses, and the potential of next generation space-borne lidar systems relevant to vegetation and ecosystem studies. This study strengthens current understanding of bird species

  15. [Prediction of retained heterosis and evaluation on breeding effects of composite livestock populations].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wen-Zhong

    2009-08-01

    A composite population is a breed made up of two or more component breeds and designed to benefit from hybrid vigor without crossing with other breeds, and is thus regarded as an alternative method for heterosis utilization. The breeding effects depend on retained heterosis in livestock composites. This paper reviews prediction methods of retained heterosis, relative production efficiency and production performance, and evaluation methods of breeding effects of composite populations. A composite population contains all three types of heterosis. If inbreeding can be avoided, it can retain heterosis to a certain extent. The retained heterosis depends on the number of contributing breeds and their proportions in the composite. The production performance rests both on average breeding values of contributing breeds and on retained heterosis of the composite itself. Breeding effects of composite population can be evaluated by theoretical prediction, actual estimation of retained heterosis, examination of genetic variation and/or comparison with other relevant breeds. PMID:19689939

  16. Climate change affects populations of northern birds in boreal protected areas

    OpenAIRE

    Virkkala, Raimo; Rajasärkkä,Ari

    2010-01-01

    Human land-use effects on species populations are minimized in protected areas and population changes can thus be more directly linked with changes in climate. In this study, bird population changes in 96 protected areas in Finland were compared using quantitative bird census data, between two time slices, 1981–1999 and 2000–2009, with the mean time span being 14 years. Bird species were categorized by distribution pattern and migratory strategy. Our results showed that northern bird species ...

  17. Consistent response of bird populations to climate change on two continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, Philip A; Mason, Lucy R; Green, Rhys E; Gregory, Richard D; Sauer, John R; Alison, Jamie; Aunins, Ainars; Brotons, Lluís; Butchart, Stuart H M; Campedelli, Tommaso; Chodkiewicz, Tomasz; Chylarecki, Przemysław; Crowe, Olivia; Elts, Jaanus; Escandell, Virginia; Foppen, Ruud P B; Heldbjerg, Henning; Herrando, Sergi; Husby, Magne; Jiguet, Frédéric; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Lindström, Åke; Noble, David G; Paquet, Jean-Yves; Reif, Jiri; Sattler, Thomas; Szép, Tibor; Teufelbauer, Norbert; Trautmann, Sven; van Strien, Arco J; van Turnhout, Chris A M; Vorisek, Petr; Willis, Stephen G

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity. Large-scale analyses have generally focused on the impacts of climate change on the geographic ranges of species and on phenology, the timing of ecological phenomena. We used long-term monitoring of the abundance of breeding birds across Europe and the United States to produce, for both regions, composite population indices for two groups of species: those for which climate suitability has been either improving or declining since 1980. The ratio of these composite indices, the climate impact indicator (CII), reflects the divergent fates of species favored or disadvantaged by climate change. The trend in CII is positive and similar in the two regions. On both continents, interspecific and spatial variation in population abundance trends are well predicted by climate suitability trends.

  18. Consistent response of bird populations to climate change on two continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, Philip A; Mason, Lucy R; Green, Rhys E; Gregory, Richard D; Sauer, John R; Alison, Jamie; Aunins, Ainars; Brotons, Lluís; Butchart, Stuart H M; Campedelli, Tommaso; Chodkiewicz, Tomasz; Chylarecki, Przemysław; Crowe, Olivia; Elts, Jaanus; Escandell, Virginia; Foppen, Ruud P B; Heldbjerg, Henning; Herrando, Sergi; Husby, Magne; Jiguet, Frédéric; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Lindström, Åke; Noble, David G; Paquet, Jean-Yves; Reif, Jiri; Sattler, Thomas; Szép, Tibor; Teufelbauer, Norbert; Trautmann, Sven; van Strien, Arco J; van Turnhout, Chris A M; Vorisek, Petr; Willis, Stephen G

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity. Large-scale analyses have generally focused on the impacts of climate change on the geographic ranges of species and on phenology, the timing of ecological phenomena. We used long-term monitoring of the abundance of breeding birds across Europe and the United States to produce, for both regions, composite population indices for two groups of species: those for which climate suitability has been either improving or declining since 1980. The ratio of these composite indices, the climate impact indicator (CII), reflects the divergent fates of species favored or disadvantaged by climate change. The trend in CII is positive and similar in the two regions. On both continents, interspecific and spatial variation in population abundance trends are well predicted by climate suitability trends. PMID:27034371

  19. Consistent response of bird populations to climate change on two continents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, Philip A.; Mason, Lucy R.; Green, Rhys E.; Gregory, Richard D.; Sauer, John R.; Alison, Jamie; Aunins, Ainars; Brotons, Lluís; Butchart, Stuart H.M.; Campedelli, Tommaso; Chodkiewicz, Tomasz; Chylarecki, Przemyslaw; Crowe, Olivia; Elts, Jaanus; Escandell, Virginia; Foppen, Ruud P.B.; Heldbjerg, Henning; Herrando, Sergi; Husby, Magne; Jiguet, Frédéric; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Lindström, Åke; Noble, David G.; Paquet, Jean-Yves; Reif, Jiri; Sattler, Thomas; Szép, Tibor; Teufelbauer, Norbert; Trautmann, Sven; Van Strien, Arco; van Turnhout, Chris A.M.; Vorisek, Petr; Willis, Stephen G.

    2016-01-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity. Large-scale analyses have generally focused on the impacts of climate change on the geographic ranges of species and on phenology, the timing of ecological phenomena. We used long-term monitoring of the abundance of breeding birds across Europe and the United States to produce, for both regions, composite population indices for two groups of species: those for which climate suitability has been either improving or declining since 1980. The ratio of these composite indices, the climate impact indicator (CII), reflects the divergent fates of species favored or disadvantaged by climate change. The trend in CII is positive and similar in the two regions. On both continents, interspecific and spatial variation in population abundance trends are well predicted by climate suitability trends.

  20. Current status, surveillance and control of avian flu in domestic and wild bird populations in Bulgaria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    areas. Many of the Anatidae populations migrate between wetlands in the northern breeding areas and southern non-breeding areas and in doing so, regularly cross the borders of two or more countries. During the expansion of HPAI (H5N l) outbreaks from Asia to Europe, 2 events implicated wild birds, particularly waterbirds, as long-distance virus vectors. First, virus outbreaks in 2005 rapidly spread westward from Russia and Kazakhstan in July and August to Turkey, Romania, and Ukraine in October.There have been further reports of H5N1 avian influenza infection in birds in Russia, the Middle East, the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, a swan in Maribor, Slovenia, wild fowl in Krasnodar and Dagestan,, and further cases in swans in Italy. There have been reports of H5 avian influenza infection in swans in Slovenia, Austria, and Hungary. It is not yet known whether these swans were infected with the H5N1 strain. Wild water birds were suggested as a vector because the virus spread through areas that had no record of any virus presence and coincided with the fall migration of wild water birds between these areas. Second, at the beginning of 2006, HPAIV (H5N1) was detected in many wild water birds in East Europe, often in areas where no outbreaks had been detected among intensively surveyed poultry; this event overlapped with unusual water bird movements associated with cold weather in the Black Sea area. Quantitative analysis of the global spread of HPAIV (H5N1) also supports the potential role of migratory wild birds in virus spread. migratory path of wild birds and the Black Sea cost, The national early warning and surveillance system also was adapted and covered these risk areas on the basement of periodic risk assessment. Two well equipped laboratories in Sofia and Varna covered the needs of samples investigation and research activities for AI of the whole territories of the country. The national surveillance plan includes domestic and wild bird populations and domestic (back yards

  1. Which Species Are We Researching and Why? A Case Study of the Ecology of British Breeding Birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ailsa J McKenzie

    Full Text Available Our ecological knowledge base is extensive, but the motivations for research are many and varied, leading to unequal species representation and coverage. As this evidence is used to support a wide range of conservation, management and policy actions, it is important that gaps and biases are identified and understood. In this paper we detail a method for quantifying research effort and impact at the individual species level, and go on to investigate the factors that best explain between-species differences in outputs. We do this using British breeding birds as a case study, producing a ranked list of species based on two scientific publication metrics: total number of papers (a measure of research quantity and h-index (a measure of the number of highly cited papers on a topic--an indication of research quality. Widespread, populous species which are native, resident and in receipt of biodiversity action plans produced significantly higher publication metrics. Guild was also significant, birds of prey the most studied group, with pigeons and doves the least studied. The model outputs for both metrics were very similar, suggesting that, at least in this example, research quantity and quality were highly correlated. The results highlight three key gaps in the evidence base, with fewer citations and publications relating to migrant breeders, introduced species and species which have experienced contractions in distribution. We suggest that the use of publication metrics in this way provides a novel approach to understanding the scale and drivers of both research quantity and impact at a species level and could be widely applied, both taxonomically and geographically.

  2. Which Species Are We Researching and Why? A Case Study of the Ecology of British Breeding Birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenzie, Ailsa J.; Robertson, Peter A.

    2015-01-01

    Our ecological knowledge base is extensive, but the motivations for research are many and varied, leading to unequal species representation and coverage. As this evidence is used to support a wide range of conservation, management and policy actions, it is important that gaps and biases are identified and understood. In this paper we detail a method for quantifying research effort and impact at the individual species level, and go on to investigate the factors that best explain between-species differences in outputs. We do this using British breeding birds as a case study, producing a ranked list of species based on two scientific publication metrics: total number of papers (a measure of research quantity) and h-index (a measure of the number of highly cited papers on a topic – an indication of research quality). Widespread, populous species which are native, resident and in receipt of biodiversity action plans produced significantly higher publication metrics. Guild was also significant, birds of prey the most studied group, with pigeons and doves the least studied. The model outputs for both metrics were very similar, suggesting that, at least in this example, research quantity and quality were highly correlated. The results highlight three key gaps in the evidence base, with fewer citations and publications relating to migrant breeders, introduced species and species which have experienced contractions in distribution. We suggest that the use of publication metrics in this way provides a novel approach to understanding the scale and drivers of both research quantity and impact at a species level and could be widely applied, both taxonomically and geographically. PMID:26154759

  3. Breeding biology and success of a reintroduced population of the critically endangered Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tweed, E.J.; Foster, J.T.; Woodworth, B.L.; Monahan, W.B.; Kellerman, J.L.; Lieberman, A.

    2006-01-01

    The ultimate success of reintroduction programs for endangered species depends on the ability of reintroduced animals to breed in the wild. We studied the nesting success and breeding biology of a reintroduced population of Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri) on the island of Kaua'i, Hawaii. Thirty-four captive-bred Puaiohi were released into the Alaka'i Swamp in 1999-2001 and monitored using radiotelemetry. Ten females and two males paired with wild and other released birds, including one polygynous trio. From March to September, 31 nests were built. Mean clutch size was 2.0 eggs, daily nest survival was 0.97 ?? 0.01 (mean ?? SE) and overall nest success was 0.40 ?? 0.02. We confirmed predation, most probably by rats (Rattus spp.), as the greatest cause of nest failure, occurring at 38% of active nests with known fates, and causing the death of two nesting adult females. Ground-based rodent control proved ineffective at protecting nest attempts. Successful nests fledged an average of 1.4 young each (n = 10), and 85% of fledglings survived at least two weeks. Importantly, breeding behavior and success were comparable to those of wild Puaiohi. This is the first record of breeding in the wild from captive-bred endangered Hawaiian passerines. The ability of captive-bred Puaiohi to survive and breed successfully in the wild bodes well for future releases of this and other endangered passerines, but high predation rates on nests and nesting females highlights the importance of maintaining and restoring safe habitat for recovery. ?? The American Ornithologists' Union, 2006.

  4. Effects of wind-energy facilities on breeding grassland bird distributions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaffer, Jill A; Buhl, Deborah A

    2016-02-01

    The contribution of renewable energy to meet worldwide demand continues to grow. Wind energy is one of the fastest growing renewable sectors, but new wind facilities are often placed in prime wildlife habitat. Long-term studies that incorporate a rigorous statistical design to evaluate the effects of wind facilities on wildlife are rare. We conducted a before-after-control-impact (BACI) assessment to determine if wind facilities placed in native mixed-grass prairies displaced breeding grassland birds. During 2003-2012, we monitored changes in bird density in 3 study areas in North Dakota and South Dakota (U.S.A.). We examined whether displacement or attraction occurred 1 year after construction (immediate effect) and the average displacement or attraction 2-5 years after construction (delayed effect). We tested for these effects overall and within distance bands of 100, 200, 300, and >300 m from turbines. We observed displacement for 7 of 9 species. One species was unaffected by wind facilities and one species exhibited attraction. Displacement and attraction generally occurred within 100 m and often extended up to 300 m. In a few instances, displacement extended beyond 300 m. Displacement and attraction occurred 1 year after construction and persisted at least 5 years. Our research provides a framework for applying a BACI design to displacement studies and highlights the erroneous conclusions that can be made without the benefit of adopting such a design. More broadly, species-specific behaviors can be used to inform management decisions about turbine placement and the potential impact to individual species. Additionally, the avoidance distance metrics we estimated can facilitate future development of models evaluating impacts of wind facilities under differing land-use scenarios. PMID:26213098

  5. Spring leaf phenology, insect abundance and the timing of breeding by birds in a North American temperate forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lany, N.; Ayres, M. P.; Stange, E.; Sillett, S.; Rodenhouse, N.; Holmes, R. T.

    2011-12-01

    Climate patterns on planet Earth display conspicuous variation among years and the phenology of biological events, when measured by day of the year, shows correspondingly high interannual variation. For many species, survival and reproductive success is influenced by the timing of their annual rhythms relative to that of other species with which they interact. The historically high interannual variation in climate has selected for adaptive plasticity in the phenology of biological populations, but climate change challenges the ability of populations to maintain appropriate phenology. Understanding the physiological mechanisms by which organisms respond to existing variation will help predict situations where the phenological associations among interacting species may break down. We used a 22-year time series of phenological observations of two foundational deciduous tree species at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest in New Hampshire USA to develop and parameterize a mechanistic Bayesian model of spring leaf development . The interannual variation in timing of leafout has been high (range of 31 days since 1960, standard deviation = 6.7 days). For both tree species, thermal sum accounts for more than 80% of the variation in day of leafout for both species but a threshold based on photoperiod or early spring soil temperatures also plays a role after which development progresses as a simple linear function of degree days above 4 C. We also analyzed a corresponding time series of the timing of arrival and nesting of a common, migratory, insectivorous bird (Black-Throated Blue Warbler, Dendroica caerulescens) in the same forest. The arrival of these warblers on their breeding grounds was slightly responsive to interannual variation in leafout; the change in the median date of warbler arrival per change in date of leafout is 0.15 ± 0.08 d. Thus, the timing of warbler arrival has only varied by about one week relative to a range of about one month in the timing of

  6. Grassland breeding bird use of managed grasslands on National Wildlife Refuges in Region 5 of the Fish and Wildlife Service

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The overall purpose of this project is to understand the likely capacity of Fish and Wildlife Service land managers to affect grassland bird populations in Region...

  7. Population genetic structure in the Holstein breed in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magalhães Araújo da Silva, Mário Henrique; Malhado, Carlos Henrique Mendes; Costa, José Lauro; Cobuci, Jaime Araujo; Costa, Claudio Napolis; Carneiro, Paulo Luiz Souza

    2016-02-01

    We evaluated the population genetic structure of the Holstein breed in Brazil through pedigree analysis with the aim of supporting genetic management of extant herds. We used data from genealogical records of 204,511 animals in farms from south and southeast Brazil. Pedigree records between 1943 and 2005 were divided into seven periods of 8 years to estimate the effective population size (N e ). N e varied during the study periods, ranging from 0.19 to 3016.25. There was an increase in the percentage of inbred animals over time, from 0.18 to 5.0 %. However, this figure may be an underestimate due to the low completeness of pedigree, primarily related to paternal pedigree. The effective number of founders (fe) was 473 animals and ancestors (fa) was 471. The genetic contribution of 260 ancestors (founders or not) accounted for 50 % of the genetic variability in the population. The average relatedness coefficient (AR) and inbreeding coefficient indicate that the Holstein breed in Brazil is being effectively managed, despite a moderate founder effect and the low number of animals that are responsible for the population variance.

  8. Terrestrial bird populations and habitat use on coastal plain tundra of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report covers terrestrial bird populations and habitat use on the coastal plain tundra of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Bird census plots were...

  9. Habitat Relationships of Three Grassland Breeding Bird Species: Broadscale Comparisons and Hayfield Management Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph J. Nocera

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Generalized recommendations for the conservation of birds in agro-ecosystems have been elusive because studies are often of a local nature, and do not compare source data against those from other regions. In this study, we developed geographically broad habitat relationship models to provide conservation prescriptions for three species that breed in farmed grasslands: Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus, Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis, and Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrow (Ammodramus nelsoni subvirgatus. We develop models from our study in Nova Scotia, Canada and confront them with independent data from Wisconsin, USA pastures and Iowa, USA restored prairies. Vegetation that was higher and denser in the prebreeding season was linked to increased occupancy rates and abundance of Bobolinks in each study region. Providing tall spring grass is easily accomplished by not cutting late in the previous year. Savannah Sparrows were instead associated with shorter and sparser spring grass, which highlights the need to simultaneously provide heterogeneous habitat for otherwise ecologically similar species. Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrows were more likely to occur, and be numerous, in areas with greater availability of drainage ditches. They and several other species would benefit from provision of ditches with adequate vegetation to promote occupancy. By combining these with other well-established recommendations, such as a delayed first harvest, a greater net conservation benefit can be realized from these working landscapes.

  10. Male heterozygosity predicts territory size, song structure and reproductive success in a cooperatively breeding bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seddon, Nathalie; Amos, William; Mulder, Raoul A; Tobias, Joseph A

    2004-09-01

    Recent studies of non-social animals have shown that sexually selected traits signal at least one measure of genetic quality: heterozygosity. To determine whether similar cues reveal group quality in more complex social systems, we examined the relationship between territory size, song structure and heterozygosity in the subdesert mesite (Monias benschi), a group-living bird endemic to Madagascar. Using nine polymorphic microsatellite loci, we found that heterozygosity predicted both the size of territories and the structure of songs used to defend them: more heterozygous groups had larger territories, and more heterozygous males used longer, lower-pitched trills in their songs. Heterozygosity was linked to territory size and song structure in males, but not in females, implying that these traits are sexually selected by female choice and/or male-male competition. To our knowledge, this study provides the first direct evidence in any animal that territory size is related to genetic diversity. We also found a positive association between seasonal reproductive success and heterozygosity, suggesting that this heritable characteristic is a reliable indicator of group quality and fitness. Given that heterozygosity predicts song structure in males, and can therefore be determined by listening to acoustic cues, we identify a mechanism by which social animals may assess rival groups, prospective partners and group mates, information of potential importance in guiding decisions related to conflict, breeding and dispersal.

  11. Modeling participation duration, with application to the North American Breeding Bird Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Link, William; Sauer, John

    2014-01-01

    We consider “participation histories,” binary sequences consisting of alternating finite sequences of 1s and 0s, ending with an infinite sequence of 0s. Our work is motivated by a study of observer tenure in the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS). In our analysis, j indexes an observer’s years of service and Xj is an indicator of participation in the survey; 0s interspersed among 1s correspond to years when observers did not participate, but subsequently returned to service. Of interest is the observer’s duration D = max {j: Xj = 1}. Because observed records X = (X1, X2,..., Xn)1 are of finite length, all that we can directly infer about duration is that D ⩾ max {j ⩽n: Xj = 1}; model-based analysis is required for inference about D. We propose models in which lengths of 0s and 1s sequences have distributions determined by the index j at which they begin; 0s sequences are infinite with positive probability, an estimable parameter. We found that BBS observers’ lengths of service vary greatly, with 25.3% participating for only a single year, 49.5% serving for 4 or fewer years, and an average duration of 8.7 years, producing an average of 7.7 counts.

  12. Modeling direct and indirect climate change impacts on ecological networks : a case study on breeding habitat of Dutch meadow birds

    OpenAIRE

    van Dijk, Jerry; Van Der Vliet, Roland E.; De Jong, Harm; Zeylmans Van Emmichoven, Maarten J.; Van Hardeveld, Henk A.; Dekker, Stefan C.; Wassen, Martin J.

    2015-01-01

    Context: Climate change can directly affect habitats within ecological networks, but may also have indirect effects on network quality by inducing land use change. The relative impact of indirect effects of climate change on the quality of ecological networks currently remains largely unknown. Objectives: The objective of this study was to determine the relative impact of direct and indirect effects of climate change on a network of breeding habitat of four meadow bird species (Black-tailed g...

  13. Stress and parental care: Prolactin responses to acute stress throughout the breeding cycle in a long-lived bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riou, Samuel; Chastel, Olivier; Lacroix, André; Hamer, Keith C

    2010-08-01

    While the role of corticosterone in mediating the response of birds to acute stress is well established, it has recently been proposed that a decrease in prolactin levels following stress may complement corticosterone in redirecting resources away from breeding activities and towards behaviors promoting immediate survival. Here, for the first time, we detail changes in the prolactin stress response of birds throughout the breeding cycle. We then discuss the modulation of the corticosterone and prolactin stress responses over successive stages of breeding, differing in reproductive value and parental effort. In a long-lived Procellariiform seabird, the Manx shearwater Puffinus puffinus, we found that prolactin levels decreased in response to acute stress during incubation and mid chick-rearing but increased in response to stress during late chick-rearing and in non parenting birds, a pattern similar to that previously described for mammals. The high corticosterone stress response in pre-breeders was consistent with predictions based on reproductive value, but a similar response during late chick-rearing was not. This probably reflected foraging effort and a heightened importance of the parents' own nutritional status at this stage of the season, in advance of post-breeding migration. We also found that baseline prolactin levels were maintained at high levels during chick-rearing and were only slightly lower during late chick-rearing and in failed breeders and non-breeders. These data suggest that prolactin may play a role in nestling care long beyond the brooding phase, that this is not due to birds spending long periods away from the colony and that prolactin secretion may be necessary for nest-guarding behavior.

  14. The European and Japanese outbreaks of H5N8 derive from a single source population providing evidence for the dispersal along the long distance bird migratory flyways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew R. Dalby

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The origin of recent parallel outbreaks of the high pathogenicity H5N8 avian flu virus in Europe and in Japan can be traced to a single source population, which has most likely been spread by migratory birds. By using Bayesian coalescent methods to analyze the DNA sequences of the virus to find the times for divergence and combining this sequence data with bird migration data we can show the most likely locations and migratory pathways involved in the origin of the current outbreak. This population was most likely located in the Siberian summer breeding grounds of long-range migratory birds. These breeding grounds provide a connection between different migratory flyways and explain the current outbreaks in remote locations. By combining genetic methods and epidemiological data we can rapidly identify the sources and the dispersion pathways for novel avian influenza outbreaks.

  15. The effect of hunger on the acoustic individuality in begging calls of a colonially breeding weaver bird

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacot Alain

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In colonially breeding birds, the ability to discriminate between individuals is often essential. During post-fledging care, parents have to recognize their own offspring among many other unrelated chicks in the breeding colony. It is well known that fledglings and food-provisioning parents of many bird species use contact calls to convey their identity. These calls are also often used as hunger-related signals of need in young birds. Here, we investigate how such calls incorporate signals of need and at the same time act as reliable indicators of each chick's identity. Results In a field study, we experimentally manipulated the hunger level of colonially breeding Jackson's golden-backed weaver (Ploceus jacksoni nestlings close to fledging and investigated its effects on acoustic call parameters. Some acoustic parameters that were related to the time-frequency pattern showed high individuality and were largely unaffected by a nestling's state of hunger. However, the majority of call parameters were significantly affected by hunger. Interestingly, most of these acoustic parameters showed both consistent changes with hunger and high between-individual differences, i.e. potential for individual recognition. Conclusion The results indicate that individual recognition processes can be based on static, hunger-independent call parameters, but also on dynamic hunger-related parameters that show high individuality. Furthermore, these signal properties suggest that the assessment of signals of need can be improved if the signal value is referenced to a chick's vocal spectrum.

  16. Distribution and abundance of breeding birds and small mammals in the high salt marsh and the adjacent upland critical edge in southern Maine

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The primary objective of the study was to document breeding bird and small mammal distribution and abundance in the high salt marsh and the adjacent riparian zone...

  17. Report of the breeding bird study and vegetation analysis on the Gardner Division of the Mark Twain National Wildlife Refuge Annada District

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — An ornithological study of the breeding birds of the islands that make up the Gardner Division and the Bear Creek Unit of Mark Twain NWR was initiated in 1992. A...

  18. A Breeding Bird Survey of the West Mountain Wildlife Management Area and the Nulhegan Basin Division of the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The objectives of this study were to: 1) Create a list of birds occurring in the study area during the breeding season; 2.) Identify species and habitats of...

  19. Dynamics of a recovering Arctic bird population: the importance of climate, density dependence, and site quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruggeman, Jason E; Swem, Ted; Andersen, David E; Kennedy, Patricia L; Nigro, Debora

    2015-10-01

    Intrinsic and extrinsic factors affect vital rates and population-level processes, and understanding these factors is paramount to devising successful management plans for wildlife species. For example, birds time migration in response, in part, to local and broadscale climate fluctuations to initiate breeding upon arrival to nesting territories, and prolonged inclement weather early in the breeding season can inhibit egg-laying and reduce productivity. Also, density-dependent regulation occurs in raptor populations, as territory size is related to resource availability. Arctic Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus tundrius; hereafter Arctic peregrine) have a limited and northern breeding distribution, including the Colville River Special Area (CRSA) in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, USA. We quantified influences of climate, topography, nest productivity, prey habitat, density dependence, and interspecific competition affecting Arctic peregrines in the CRSA by applying the Dail-Madsen model to estimate abundance and vital rates of adults on nesting cliffs from 1981 through 2002. Arctic peregrine abundance increased throughout the 1980s, which spanned the population's recovery from DDT-induced reproductive failure, until exhibiting a stationary trend in the 1990s. Apparent survival rate (i.e., emigration; death) was negatively correlated with the number of adult Arctic peregrines on the cliff the previous year, suggesting effects of density-dependent population regulation. Apparent survival and arrival rates (i.e., immigration; recruitment) were higher during years with earlier snowmelt and milder winters, and apparent survival was positively correlated with nesting season maximum daily temperature. Arrival rate was positively correlated with average Arctic peregrine productivity along a cliff segment from the previous year and initial abundance was positively correlated with cliff height. Higher cliffs with documented higher productivity (presumably

  20. Demography of a breeding population of whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) near Churchill, Manitoba, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perz, Johanna

    I used a GIS raster layer of an area in the Churchill, Manitoba region to investigate the effect of breeding habitat on demography and density of Whimbrel from 2010 through 2013. Program MARK was used to quantify adult and daily nest survival. Apparent annual survival of 0.73 +/- 0.06 SE (95% CI = 0.60-0.83) did not significantly differ between sexes or habitats and was lower than expected based on longevity records and estimates for other large-bodied shorebirds. Nest success, corrected for exposure days, was highly variable, ranging from a low of 3% (95% CI = 0-12%) in 2011 to a high of 71% (95% CI = 54-83%) in 2013. The highest rate of nest survival occurred in the spring with the warmest mean temperature. I developed a generalized linear model (GLM) with a negative-binomial distribution from random plots that were surveyed for abundance to extrapolate a local breeding population size of 410 +/- 230 SE and density of 3.2 birds per square km +/- 1.8 SE. The result of my study suggests that other aspects of habitat not captured by the land cover categories may be more important to population dynamics.

  1. Extinction risk to bird populations caused by DDT exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamaru, Mayuko; Iwasa, Yoh; Nakanishi, Junko

    2003-10-01

    The impact of toxic chemicals on wild animals and plants can be quantified in terms of the enhanced risk of population extinction. To illustrate a method for doing this, we estimated such impact for two bird species: herring gull (Larus argentatus) in Long Island, NY, and sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) in eastern England, when they were exposed to DDT (p,p(')-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) and its metabolites (called DDTs). The method we used is based on a formula of the mean time to population extinction derived for a stochastic differential equation (the canonical model). The intrinsic rate of natural population growth was estimated from an exponentially growing population, and the intensity of the environmental fluctuation was estimated from the magnitude of population size fluctuation. The effect of exposure to DDTs in reducing the population growth rate was evaluated based on an age-structured population model, by assuming that age-specific fertility is density-dependent and sensitive to DDTs exposure, but age-specific survivorship is not. The results are expressed in terms of the risk equivalent--the decrease in carrying capacity K that causes the same enhancement of extinction risk as chemical exposure at a given level. The risk equivalent can be used in mitigation banking. PMID:12946395

  2. Habitat-specific population growth of a farmland bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debora Arlt

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: To assess population persistence of species living in heterogeneous landscapes, the effects of habitat on reproduction and survival have to be investigated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used a matrix population model to estimate habitat-specific population growth rates for a population of northern wheatears Oenanthe oenanthe breeding in farmland consisting of a mosaic of distinct habitat (land use types. Based on extensive long-term data on reproduction and survival, habitats characterised by tall field layers (spring- and autumn-sown crop fields, ungrazed grasslands displayed negative stochastic population growth rates (log lambda(s: -0.332, -0.429, -0.168, respectively, that were markedly lower than growth rates of habitats characterised by permanently short field layers (pastures grazed by cattle or horses, and farmyards, log lambda(s: -0.056, +0.081, -0.059. Although habitats differed with respect to reproductive performance, differences in habitat-specific population growth were largely due to differences in adult and first-year survival rates, as shown by a life table response experiment (LTRE. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results show that estimation of survival rates is important for realistic assessments of habitat quality. Results also indicate that grazed grasslands and farmyards may act as source habitats, whereas crop fields and ungrazed grasslands with tall field layers may act as sink habitats. We suggest that the strong decline of northern wheatears in Swedish farmland may be linked to the corresponding observed loss of high quality breeding habitat, i.e. grazed semi-natural grasslands.

  3. Population Trends of Central European Montane Birds Provide Evidence for Adverse Impacts of Climate Change on High-Altitude Species.

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    Jiří Flousek

    Full Text Available Climate change is among the most important global threats to biodiversity and mountain areas are supposed to be under especially high pressure. Although recent modelling studies suggest considerable future range contractions of montane species accompanied with increased extinction risk, data allowing to test actual population consequences of the observed climate changes and identifying traits associated to their adverse impacts are very scarce. To fill this knowledge gap, we estimated long-term population trends of montane birds from 1984 to 2011 in a central European mountain range, the Giant Mountains (Krkonoše, where significant warming occurred over this period. We then related the population trends to several species' traits related to the climate change effects. We found that the species breeding in various habitats at higher altitudes had more negative trends than species breeding at lower altitudes. We also found that the species moved upwards as a response to warming climate, and these altitudinal range shifts were associated with more positive population trends at lower altitudes than at higher altitudes. Moreover, long-distance migrants declined more than residents or species migrating for shorter distances. Taken together, these results indicate that the climate change, besides other possible environmental changes, already influences populations of montane birds with particularly adverse impacts on high-altitude species such as water pipit (Anthus spinoletta. It is evident that the alpine species, predicted to undergo serious climatically induced range contractions due to warming climate in the future, already started moving along this trajectory.

  4. Numerical Response of Breeding Birds Following Experimental Selection Harvesting in Northern Hardwood Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Hache

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Silvicultural treatments have been shown to alter the composition of species assemblages in numerous taxa. However, the intensity and persistence of these effects have rarely been documented. We used a before-after, control-impact (BACI paired design, i.e., five pairs of 25-ha study plots, 1-control and 1-treated plot, to quantify changes in the density of eight forest bird species in response to selection harvesting over six breeding seasons, one year pre- and five years postharvest. Focal species included mature forest associates, i.e., Northern Parula (Setophaga americana and Black-throated Green Warbler (Setophaga virens, forest generalists, i.e., Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius and Swainson’s Thrush (Catharus ustulatus, early-seral specialists, i.e., Mourning Warbler (Geothlypis philadelphia and Chestnut-sided Warbler (Setophaga pensylvanica, species associated with shrubby forest gaps, i.e., Black-throated Blue Warbler (Setophaga caerulescens, and mid-seral species, i.e., American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla. As predicted, we found a negative numerical response to the treatment in the Black-throated Green Warbler, no treatment effect in the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, and a positive treatment effect in early-seral specialists. We only detected a year effect in the Northern Parula and the American Redstart. There was evidence for a positive treatment effect on the Swainson’s Thrush when the regeneration started to reach the pole stage, i.e., fifth year postharvest. These findings suggest that selection harvesting has the potential to maintain diverse avian assemblages while allowing sustainable management of timber supply, but future studies should determine whether mature-forest associates can sustain second- and third-entry selection harvest treatments.

  5. Chronic lack of breeding by Galápagos Blue-footed Boobies and associated population decline

    OpenAIRE

    David Anchundia; Huyvaert, Kathryn P; David J. Anderson

    2014-01-01

    A survey of Blue-footed Boobies (Sula nebouxii excisa) throughout the taxon's range in Galápagos, Ecuador found ~6400 adults, compared to a rough estimate of 20,000 in the 1960s. Few pairs bred in 2011-2013 and almost no birds in juvenile plumage were seen. Long-term data suggest that poor breeding began in 1998. Lack of recruitment over this period would mean that the current population is mostly elderly and experiencing senescent decline in performance. Anthropogenic effects such as int...

  6. Chronic lack of breeding by Galápagos Blue-footed Boobies and associated population decline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Anchundia

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available A survey of Blue-footed Boobies (Sula nebouxii excisa throughout the taxon's range in Galápagos, Ecuador found ~6400 adults, compared to a rough estimate of 20,000 in the 1960s. Few pairs bred in 2011-2013 and almost no birds in juvenile plumage were seen. Long-term data suggest that poor breeding began in 1998. Lack of recruitment over this period would mean that the current population is mostly elderly and experiencing senescent decline in performance. Anthropogenic effects such as introduced predators are unlikely to explain this decline because islands with and without such factors exhibited the same low breeding. The poor reproduction seems to be linked to diet. Previous work indicated that sardine and herring (Clupeidae supported successful breeding, but these fish were mostly absent from the diet during this study, except in the central part of Galápagos, where most breeding attempts during this study occurred. Elsewhere in the eastern Pacific sardine abundance has decreased dramatically by natural processes in the last 15 years, as part of a well-documented and apparently natural cycle. This cyclic change in abundance provides a possible explanation for the recent demographic changes in Blue-footed Boobies in Galápagos. Whether natural or anthropogenic in origin, the implications of senescent decline in breeding ability and survival are dramatic for this genetically distinct icon of biodiversity and ecotourism.

  7. Birds like it Corky: the influence of habitat features and management of 'montados' in breeding bird communities.

    OpenAIRE

    Godinho, Carlos; Rabaça, J.E.

    2011-01-01

    In the southwest part of the Iberian Peninsula the dominant land-use are the Portuguese montados and Spanish dehesas, parkland forested areas of anthropogenic origin dominated by cork oak. They form a wooded matrix with open areas, scattered woodlands and undisturbed patches of Mediterranean forest and scrublands. The montados are characterized by a rich bird community. We have focus our study in a multidisciplinary approach, evaluating how management and landscape patterns influe...

  8. Social genetic and social environment effects on parental and helper care in a cooperatively breeding bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Mark James; Robinson, Matthew R; Mannarelli, Maria-Elena; Hatchwell, Ben J

    2015-07-01

    Phenotypes expressed in a social context are not only a function of the individual, but can also be shaped by the phenotypes of social partners. These social effects may play a major role in the evolution of cooperative breeding if social partners differ in the quality of care they provide and if individual carers adjust their effort in relation to that of other carers. When applying social effects models to wild study systems, it is also important to explore sources of individual plasticity that could masquerade as social effects. We studied offspring provisioning rates of parents and helpers in a wild population of long-tailed tits Aegithalos caudatus using a quantitative genetic framework to identify these social effects and partition them into genetic, permanent environment and current environment components. Controlling for other effects, individuals were consistent in their provisioning effort at a given nest, but adjusted their effort based on who was in their social group, indicating the presence of social effects. However, these social effects differed between years and social contexts, indicating a current environment effect, rather than indicating a genetic or permanent environment effect. While this study reveals the importance of examining environmental and genetic sources of social effects, the framework we present is entirely general, enabling a greater understanding of potentially important social effects within any ecological population.

  9. Species richness and relative abundance of breeding birds in forests of the Mississippi Alluvial Valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelms, C.O.; Twedt, D.J.

    1993-01-01

    aquatica), American elm (Ulmus arnericana), sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) and willow oak (Quercus phellos) The mean basal area of all trees 10 cm diameter-at-breast height (dbh) was 28 m2 /ha (range 7-70). The mean canopy cover was 87 percent, mean canopy height was 20 m, ground cover was 60 percent, and vegetation density (2-7 m) was 47 percent. The most frequently encountered understory species were sugarberry, ash (Fraxinus spp.), maple (Acer spp.), and elm (Ulnrus spp.). A cooperative GIs effort among the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Nature Conservancy, and the University of Arkansas is currently classifying forested habitats within the MAV. This effort will provide information on stand size and topology which will be used in concert with our current data, and data from visits to additional forest stands in 1993, to assess the relationship between the size, quatity, and composition of forests within the MAV and their breeding bird community.

  10. Global population collapse in a superabundant migratory bird and illegal trapping in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamp, Johannes; Oppel, Steffen; Ananin, Alexandr A; Durnev, Yurii A; Gashev, Sergey N; Hölzel, Norbert; Mishchenko, Alexandr L; Pessa, Jorma; Smirenski, Sergey M; Strelnikov, Evgenii G; Timonen, Sami; Wolanska, Kolja; Chan, Simba

    2015-12-01

    Persecution and overexploitation by humans are major causes of species extinctions. Rare species, often confined to small geographic ranges, are usually at highest risk, whereas extinctions of superabundant species with very large ranges are rare. The Yellow-breasted Bunting (Emberiza aureola) used to be one of the most abundant songbirds of the Palearctic, with a very large breeding range stretching from Scandinavia to the Russian Far East. Anecdotal information about rapid population declines across the range caused concern about unsustainable trapping along the species' migration routes. We conducted a literature review and used long-term monitoring data from across the species' range to model population trend and geographical patterns of extinction. The population declined by 84.3-94.7% between 1980 and 2013, and the species' range contracted by 5000 km. Quantitative evidence from police raids suggested rampant illegal trapping of the species along its East Asian flyway in China. A population model simulating an initial harvest level of 2% of the population, and an annual increase of 0.2% during the monitoring period produced a population trajectory that matched the observed decline. We suggest that trapping strongly contributed to the decline because the consumption of Yellow-breasted Bunting and other songbirds has increased as a result of economic growth and prosperity in East Asia. The magnitude and speed of the decline is unprecedented among birds with a comparable range size, with the exception of the Passenger Pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius), which went extinct in 1914 due to industrial-scale hunting. Our results demonstrate the urgent need for an improved monitoring of common and widespread species' populations, and consumption levels throughout East Asia. PMID:26059233

  11. Evaluation of the Bird Conservation Area Concept in the Northern Tallgrass Prairie : Annual Report: 1999

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — In 1998 we initiated a test of the concept that Bird Conservation Areas (BCA's) can maintain populations of breeding grassland birds. The underlying hypothesis is...

  12. Phylogeny, genetic relationships and population structure of five Italian local chicken breeds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Ceccobelli

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Number and population size of local chicken breeds in Italy is considered to be critical. Molecular data can be used to provide reliable insight into the diversity of chicken breeds. The first aim of this study was to investigate the maternal genetic origin of five Italian local chicken breeds (Ancona, Livorno, Modenese, Romagnola and Valdarnese bianca based on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA information. Secondly, the extent of the genetic diversity, population structure and the genetic relationships among these chicken populations, by using 27 microsatellite markers, were assessed. To achieve these targets, a 506 bp fragment of the D-loop region was sequenced in 50 chickens of the five breeds. Eighteen variable sites were observed which defined 12 haplotypes. They were assigned to three clades and two maternal lineages. Results indicated that 90% of the haplotypes are related to clade E, which has been described to originate from the Indian subcontinent. For the microsatellite analysis, 137 individual blood samples from the five Italian breeds were included. A total of 147 alleles were detected at 27 microsatellite loci. The five Italian breeds showed a slightly higher degree of inbreeding (FIS=0.08 than the commercial populations that served as reference. Structure analysis showed a separation of the Italian breeds from the reference populations. A further sub-clustering allowed discriminating among the five different Italian breeds. This research provides insight into population structure, relatedness and variability of the five studied breeds.

  13. Long-term changes of species richness in a breeding bird community of a small Mediterranean archipelago

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    Martínez-Abraín, A.

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed the pattern of species richness changes in a bird–breeding bird community on a small western Mediterranean archipelago (Columbretes Islands over a 40–year period (1964–2003. The aim of this study was to qualitatively account for the relative roles of local and regional factors in shaping the community. As expected, we found that regional factors (at the metapopulation spatial scale increased diversity whereas local factors (i.e. ecological probably prevented further increases in diversity. We found that the archipelago gained four new species (two seabirds and two falconids during the study period, whereas no extinctions were recorded. The community seems partially or completely closed to some groups of species (e.g. small–sized birds such as passerines and storm–petrels, probably owing to predatory exclusion by Eleonora falcons (Falco eleonorae. As newly arrived species have breeding calendars that do not fully overlap with those of resident species, competition for space in a rather saturated area is prevented. Preservation of rare species which increase gamma (regional diversity rather than alpha diversity with common species should be the main local conservation goal.

  14. Joint review of related contracts on bird populations in the Ravenglass Estuary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Black-headed Gulls breeding at Ravenglass (and at other coastal sites in Cumbria) fed exclusively inland during the breeding season and so they and their young could not have acquired any radionuclides present in the estuarine muds and invertebrates. Levels in the invertebrates and in gull tissues were low; they were slightly higher in Shelducks, which feed on estuarine invertebrates but have nested successfully at Ravenglass in recent years. Gulls and two other ground-nesting bird species have suffered severe disturbance and predation by foxes in recent springs at Ravenglass; Shelducks nest in burrows and have escaped such effects. Levels of radionuclides in birds, particularly gulls, are too low to have caused breeding failures at Ravenglass. (author)

  15. Quantitative assessment of the importance of phenotypic plasticity in adaptation to climate change in wild bird populations.

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    Oscar Vedder

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Predictions about the fate of species or populations under climate change scenarios typically neglect adaptive evolution and phenotypic plasticity, the two major mechanisms by which organisms can adapt to changing local conditions. As a consequence, we have little understanding of the scope for organisms to track changing environments by in situ adaptation. Here, we use a detailed individual-specific long-term population study of great tits (Parus major breeding in Wytham Woods, Oxford, UK to parameterise a mechanistic model and thus directly estimate the rate of environmental change to which in situ adaptation is possible. Using the effect of changes in early spring temperature on temporal synchrony between birds and a critical food resource, we focus in particular on the contribution of phenotypic plasticity to population persistence. Despite using conservative estimates for evolutionary and reproductive potential, our results suggest little risk of population extinction under projected local temperature change; however, this conclusion relies heavily on the extent to which phenotypic plasticity tracks the changing environment. Extrapolating the model to a broad range of life histories in birds suggests that the importance of phenotypic plasticity for adjustment to projected rates of temperature change increases with slower life histories, owing to lower evolutionary potential. Understanding the determinants and constraints on phenotypic plasticity in natural populations is thus crucial for characterising the risks that rapidly changing environments pose for the persistence of such populations.

  16. Population Development of Baltic Bird Species: Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis) - Update with results from 2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Herrmann, Christof; Bregnballe, Thomas; Larsson, Kjell;

    2011-01-01

    . After a decade of exponential growth, the breeding population of the Cormorant has stabilized in the south-western Baltic (Denmark and the northern Federal States of Germany - Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania) in the 1990s, but breeding populations are still growing in the central......-, and Curonian lagoon)....

  17. Meadow birds as indicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beintema, A J

    1983-09-01

    The use of birds as indicators for 'biological qualities' is not without risks, and should always be based on a sound knowledge of population dynamics and ecological requirements of the species involved. Meadow birds form a comparatively well-studied group of waders, which breed in Dutch grasslands, heavily influenced by agricultural management. The individual species show different tolerances to intensity levels of management, and can therefore be used as indicators for these levels. PMID:24259105

  18. Protection Island NWR: Initial Survey Instructions for Purple Martin Breeding Bird Survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — During the 2013 breeding season, several Purple Martins were observed entering cavities in snags located on or adjacent to the grasslands on PINWR. In 2014, Purple...

  19. The sub-annual breeding cycle of a tropical seabird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, S James; Martin, Graham R; Dawson, Alistair; Wearn, Colin P; Hughes, B John

    2014-01-01

    Breeding periodicity allows organisms to synchronise breeding attempts with the most favourable ecological conditions under which to raise offspring. For most animal species, ecological conditions vary seasonally and usually impose an annual breeding schedule on their populations; sub-annual breeding schedules will be rare. We use a 16-year dataset of breeding attempts by a tropical seabird, the sooty tern (Onychoprion fuscatus), on Ascension Island to provide new insights about this classical example of a population of sub-annually breeding birds that was first documented in studies 60 years previously on the same island. We confirm that the breeding interval of this population has remained consistently sub-annual. By ringing >17,000 birds and re-capturing a large sample of them at equivalent breeding stages in subsequent seasons, we reveal for the first time that many individual birds also consistently breed sub-annually (i.e. that sub-annual breeding is an individual as well as a population breeding strategy). Ascension Island sooty terns appear to reduce their courtship phase markedly compared with conspecifics breeding elsewhere. Our results provide rare insights into the ecological and physiological drivers of breeding periodicity, indicating that reduction of the annual cycle to just two life-history stages, breeding and moult, is a viable life-history strategy and that moult may determine the minimum time between breeding attempts.

  20. Effects of set-aside management on birds breeding in lowland Ireland

    OpenAIRE

    Bracken, Fintan; Bolger, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    Farmland birds have suffered a severe decline in recent years throughout Europe including Ireland. Agricultural intensification is believed to be the main cause and this has led to the introduction of agri-environmental schemes, of which set-aside is a part. Bird abundance and diversity were compared between set-aside and adjacent tillage or grassland at 18 locations. The set-aside sites were also assigned to one of four management types: rotational set-aside, non-rotational set-aside, first ...

  1. Techniques used in reducing oil impact on bird populations

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This paper deals with methods for deterring birds from oil spill areas. This subject has been exhaustively reviewed by Koski and Richardson (1976) and succinctly...

  2. Breeding Birds Associated with Seasonal Pools in the Northeastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seasonal pools in the northeast US are important habitats for amphibians and invertebrates, but little is known of their importance for birds. We examined avian community composition at seasonal pools across an urbanization gradient in Rhode Island to test the hypotheses that se...

  3. Annual recapture and survival rates of two non-breeding adult populations of Roseate Terns Stema dougallii captured on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, and estimates of their population sizes

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, P.; Minton, C.D.T.; Nisbet, I.C.T.; Hines, J.E.

    2008-01-01

    Capture-recapture data from two disparate breeding populations of Roseate Terns (Sterna dougallii) captured together as non-breeding individuals from 2002 to 2007 in the southern Great Barrier Reef. Australia were analyzed for both survival rate and recapture rate. The average annual survival rate for the birds from the Asian population (S. d. bangsi) (0.901) is higher than that of the other population of unknown breeding origin (0.819). There was large variability in survival in both populations among years, but the average survival rate of 0.85 is similar to estimates for the same species in North America. The Cormack-Jolly-Seber models used in program MARK to estimate survival rates also produced estimated of recapture probabilities and population sizes. These estimates of population size were 29,000 for S. D. bangsi and 8,300 for the study area and much larger than the documented numbers in the likely breeding areas, suggesting that many breeding sites are currently unknown.

  4. Analysis of genetic diversity and population structure of Chinese yak breeds (Bos grunniens) using microsatellite markers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Guixiang Zhang; Weisheng Chen; Ming Xue; Zhigang Wang; Hong Chang; Xu Han; Xinjun Liao; Donglei Wang

    2008-01-01

    Nine Chinese yak breeds (Maiwa,Tianzhu White,Qinghai Plateau,Sibu,Zhongdian,Pall,Tibetan High Mountain,Jiulong,and Xin-jiang) and Gayal were analyzed by means of 16 microsatellite markers to determine the level of genetic variation within populations,genetic relationship between populations,and population structure for each breed.A total of 206 microsatellite alleles were observed.Mean F-statistics (0.056) for 9 yak breeds indicated that 94.4% of the genetic variation was observed within yak breeds and 5.6% of the genetic variation existed amongst breeds.The Neighbor-Joining phylogenetic free was constructed based on Nei's standard genetic dis-tances and two clusters were obtained.The Gayal separated from the yaks far away and formed one cluster and 9 yak breeds were grouped together.The analysis of population structure for 9 yak breeds and the Gayal showed that they resulted in four clusters; one clus-ter includes yaks from Tibet Autonomous Region and Qinghai Province,one cluster combines Zhongdian,Maiwa,and Tianzhu White,and Jiulong and Xinjiang come into the third cluster.Pali was mainly in the first cluster (90%),Jiulong was mainly in the second cluster (87.1%),Zhongdian was primarily in the third cluster (83%),and the other yak breeds were distributed in two to three clusters.The Gayal was positively left in the fourth cluster (99.3%).

  5. Using DNA analysis to assess territory structure, mortality and partner shifts in a population of white-tailed eagle breeding inside and close to the Smoela wind-power plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dahl, Espen Lie; Flagstad, Oeystein; Follestad, Arne; Reitan, Ole; Bevanger, Kjetil; Nygaard, Torgeir

    2011-07-01

    Full text: In this project, we used DNA analyses for individual identification of the population of white-tailed eagles at Smoela. Our objective was to follow the adult birds over time and reveal mortality and partner shifts at the nesting sites. Moulted feathers from adult eagles and plucked feathers from chicks were collected yearly over a five-year period (2006-2010) from all known eagle territories on Smoela, both within and outside the wind-power plant area. In addition, tissue samples from all birds that died in collisions with the wind turbines were collected. Altogether, feathers from more than 80 nests were sampled during 2006-2010. Our data demonstrated that many of the breeding pairs used several nesting localities, between which they move from one year to another. The 80+ nests in our sample represented 40 active territories, which is close to 100% of the known active territories on Smoela. Our results showed that the number of active white-tailed eagle territories on Smoela had been overestimated from observations by more than 25%. This demonstrates the importance of conducting DNA analysis along with other methods when estimating the breeding population size for birds of prey. So far, we have documented 13 certain instances where one of the birds in a breeding pair has been replaced. In five of these instances, the bird that was replaced was found killed by a wind turbine. Other mortality factors may have influenced the remaining eight replacements. However, a large proportion of the birds with unknown fate had established territories close to the wind-power plant area, suggesting that even these birds might have been fatally injured or killed in collisions with a turbine. An integrated approach combining data from adult birds, chicks on the nests and birds killed by wind turbines is currently used to quantify the survival rate in the adult population and the potential negative effect from the wind power plant. (Author)

  6. Bird populations and habitat use, Canning River Delta, Alaska: Report to Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Bird populations and use of habitat at the Canning River Delta, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, was the subject of a study during the summer of 1979 and 1980....

  7. Black Tern Population Survey and other Marsh Bird Monitoring Activities in Vermont 2003

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report looks at marsh bird population trends within the marshes of Vermont, and investigates the effect of water level and marsh vegetation changes on marsh...

  8. Black Tern Population Survey and other Marsh Bird Monitoring Activities in Vermont 2002

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report takes a look at marsh bird population trends within the marshes of Vermont, and investigates the effect of water level and marsh vegetation changes on...

  9. Black Tern Population Survey and other Marsh Bird Monitoring Activities in Vermont 2005

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report looks at marsh bird population trends within the marshes of Vermont, and investigates the effect of water level and marsh vegetation changes on marsh...

  10. Black Tern Population Survey and other Marsh Bird Monitoring Activities in Vermont 2004

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report looks at marsh bird population trends within the marshes of Vermont, and investigates the effect of water level and marsh vegetation changes on marsh...

  11. An assessment of population structure in eight breeds of cattle using a whole genome SNP panel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gao Chuan

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Analyses of population structure and breed diversity have provided insight into the origin and evolution of cattle. Previously, these studies have used a low density of microsatellite markers, however, with the large number of single nucleotide polymorphism markers that are now available, it is possible to perform genome wide population genetic analyses in cattle. In this study, we used a high-density panel of SNP markers to examine population structure and diversity among eight cattle breeds sampled from Bos indicus and Bos taurus. Results Two thousand six hundred and forty one single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs spanning all of the bovine autosomal genome were genotyped in Angus, Brahman, Charolais, Dutch Black and White Dairy, Holstein, Japanese Black, Limousin and Nelore cattle. Population structure was examined using the linkage model in the program STRUCTURE and Fst estimates were used to construct a neighbor-joining tree to represent the phylogenetic relationship among these breeds. Conclusion The whole-genome SNP panel identified several levels of population substructure in the set of examined cattle breeds. The greatest level of genetic differentiation was detected between the Bos taurus and Bos indicus breeds. When the Bos indicus breeds were excluded from the analysis, genetic differences among beef versus dairy and European versus Asian breeds were detected among the Bos taurus breeds. Exploration of the number of SNP loci required to differentiate between breeds showed that for 100 SNP loci, individuals could only be correctly clustered into breeds 50% of the time, thus a large number of SNP markers are required to replace the 30 microsatellite markers that are currently commonly used in genetic diversity studies.

  12. A Deeper Statistical Examination of Arrival Dates of Migratory Breeding Birds in Relation to Global Climate Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Herbert Wilson

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Using an 18-year dataset of arrival dates of 65 species of Maine migratory breeding birds, I take a deeper view of the data to ask questions about the shapes of the distribution. For each year, most species show a consistent right-skewed pattern of distribution, suggesting that selection is stronger against individuals that arrive too early compared to those that arrive later. Distributions are consistently leptokurtic, indicating a narrow window of optimal arrival dates. Species that arrive earlier in the spring show higher skewness and kurtosis values. Nectarivorous species showed more pronounced skewness. Wintering area did not explain patterns of skewness or kurtosis. Deviations from average temperatures and the North Atlantic Oscillation index explained little variation in skewness and kurtosis. When arrival date distributions are broken down into different medians (e.g., 5% median and 75% median, stronger correlations emerge for portions of the distribution that are adjacent, suggesting species fine-tune the progress of their migration. Interspecific correlations for birds arriving around the same time are stronger for earliest migrants (the 25% median compared to the true median and the 75% median.

  13. Bird community composition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antrobus, T.J.; Guilfoyle, M.P.; Barrow, W.C.; Hamel, P.B.; Wakeley, J.S.

    2000-01-01

    Neotropical migrants are birds that breed in North America and winter primarily in Central and South America. Long-term population studies of birds in the Eastern United States indicated declines of some forest-dwelling birds, many of which winter in the Neotropics (Peterjohn and others 1995). These declines were attributed to loss of wintering and breeding habitat due to deforestation and fragmentation, respectively. Many species of Nearctic migrants--birds that breed in the northern regions of North America and winter in the Southern United States--are also experiencing population declines. Because large areas of undistrubed, older, bottomland hardwood forests oftern contain large numbers of habitat specialists, including forest-interior neotropical migrants and wintering Nearctic migrants, these forests may be critical in maintaining avian diversity. This study had two primary objectivs: (1) to create a baseline data set that can be used as a standard against which other bottomland hardwood forests can be compared, and (2) to establish long-term monitoring stations during both breeding and wintering seasons to discern population trends of avian species using bottomland hardwood forests.

  14. Does corticosterone regulate the onset of breeding in free-living birds?: The CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis and six potential mechanisms for priming corticosteroid function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lattin, Christine R; Breuner, Creagh W; Michael Romero, L

    2016-02-01

    For many avian species, the decision to initiate breeding is based on information from a variety of environmental cues, including photoperiod, temperature, food availability, and social interactions. There is evidence that the hormone corticosterone may be involved in delaying the onset of breeding in cases where supplemental cues, such as low food availability and inclement weather, indicate that the environment is not suitable. However, not all studies have found the expected relationships between breeding delays and corticosterone titers. In this review, we present the hypothesis that corticosterone physiology mediates flexibility in breeding initiation (the "CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis"), and propose six possible corticosterone-driven mechanisms in pre-breeding birds that may delay breeding initiation: altering hormone titers, negative feedback regulation, plasma binding globulin concentrations, intracellular receptor concentrations, enzyme activity and interacting hormone systems. Based on the length of the breeding season and species-specific natural history, we also predict variation in corticosterone-regulated pre-breeding flexibility. Although few studies thus far have examined mechanisms beyond plasma hormone titers, the CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis is grounded on a solid foundation of research showing seasonal variation in the physiological stress response and knowledge of physiological mechanisms modulating corticosteroid effects. We propose six possible mechanisms as testable and falsifiable predictions to help clarify the extent of HPA axis regulation of the initiation of breeding. PMID:26524719

  15. Does corticosterone regulate the onset of breeding in free-living birds?: The CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis and six potential mechanisms for priming corticosteroid function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lattin, Christine R; Breuner, Creagh W; Michael Romero, L

    2016-02-01

    For many avian species, the decision to initiate breeding is based on information from a variety of environmental cues, including photoperiod, temperature, food availability, and social interactions. There is evidence that the hormone corticosterone may be involved in delaying the onset of breeding in cases where supplemental cues, such as low food availability and inclement weather, indicate that the environment is not suitable. However, not all studies have found the expected relationships between breeding delays and corticosterone titers. In this review, we present the hypothesis that corticosterone physiology mediates flexibility in breeding initiation (the "CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis"), and propose six possible corticosterone-driven mechanisms in pre-breeding birds that may delay breeding initiation: altering hormone titers, negative feedback regulation, plasma binding globulin concentrations, intracellular receptor concentrations, enzyme activity and interacting hormone systems. Based on the length of the breeding season and species-specific natural history, we also predict variation in corticosterone-regulated pre-breeding flexibility. Although few studies thus far have examined mechanisms beyond plasma hormone titers, the CORT-Flexibility Hypothesis is grounded on a solid foundation of research showing seasonal variation in the physiological stress response and knowledge of physiological mechanisms modulating corticosteroid effects. We propose six possible mechanisms as testable and falsifiable predictions to help clarify the extent of HPA axis regulation of the initiation of breeding.

  16. Experimental waterfowl breeding population survey Maine, the Maritime provinces, and Central Quebec: 1997

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for Maine, the Maritime provinces, and Central Quebec during 1997. The primary purpose...

  17. 1980 raptor survey: The breeding peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) population of Amchitka Island, Alaska

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — A survey of the breeding peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) population was made on Amchitka Island, Alaska, during the 1980 summer field season. The survey was...

  18. 1990 waterfowl breeding population survey for South Dakota and North Dakota

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for North and South Dakota during 1990. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  19. Alaska-Yukon waterfowl breeding population survey: May 15 to June 12, 1984

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for Alaska-Yukon during 1984. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  20. 1993 waterfowl breeding population survey for South Dakota and North Dakota

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey for North and South Dakota during 1993. The primary purpose of the survey is to provide...

  1. Plan for Establishment of a Breeding Canada Goose Population on the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report outlines a plan on how to implement a program for the establishment of a breeding Canada Goose population on the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge. It...

  2. Population age composition, breeding biology and notes on the wolverine in Alaska and Yukon Territory

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report describes the population age, composition, breeding biology and notes on the wolverine in Alaska and the Yukon territory. Life history, physical...

  3. Microsatellite based genetic diversity and population structure of the endangered Spanish Guadarrama goat breed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, Magdalena; Calvo, Jorge H; Martínez, Marta; Marcos-Carcavilla, Ane; Cuevas, Javier; González, Carmen; Jurado, Juan J; de Tejada, Paloma Díez

    2009-01-01

    Background Assessing genetic biodiversity and population structure of minor breeds through the information provided by neutral molecular markers, allows determination of their extinction risk and to design strategies for their management and conservation. Analysis of microsatellite loci is known to be highly informative in the reconstruction of the historical processes underlying the evolution and differentiation of animal populations. Guadarrama goat is a threatened Spanish breed which actual census (2008) consists of 3057 females and 203 males distributed in 22 populations more or less isolated. The aim of this work is to study the genetic status of this breed through the analysis of molecular data from 10 microsatellites typed in historic and actual live animals. Results The mean expected heterozygosity across loci within populations ranged from 0.62 to 0.77. Genetic differentiation measures were moderate, with a mean FST of 0.074, GST of 0.081 and RST of 0.085. Percentages of variation among and within populations were 7.5 and 92.5, respectively. Bayesian clustering analyses pointed out a population subdivision in 16 clusters, however, no correlation between geographical distances and genetic differences was found. Management factors such as the limited exchange of animals between farmers (estimated gene flow Nm = 3.08) mostly due to sanitary and social constraints could be the major causes affecting Guadarrama goat population subdivision. Conclusion Genetic diversity measures revealed a good status of biodiversity in the Guadarrama goat breed. Since diseases are the first cause affecting the census in this breed, population subdivision would be an advantage for its conservation. However, to maintain private alleles present at low frequencies in such small populations minimizing the inbreeding rate, it would necessitate some mating designs of animals carrying such alleles among populations. The systematic use of molecular markers will facilitate the

  4. Microsatellite based genetic diversity and population structure of the endangered Spanish Guadarrama goat breed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurado Juan J

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Assessing genetic biodiversity and population structure of minor breeds through the information provided by neutral molecular markers, allows determination of their extinction risk and to design strategies for their management and conservation. Analysis of microsatellite loci is known to be highly informative in the reconstruction of the historical processes underlying the evolution and differentiation of animal populations. Guadarrama goat is a threatened Spanish breed which actual census (2008 consists of 3057 females and 203 males distributed in 22 populations more or less isolated. The aim of this work is to study the genetic status of this breed through the analysis of molecular data from 10 microsatellites typed in historic and actual live animals. Results The mean expected heterozygosity across loci within populations ranged from 0.62 to 0.77. Genetic differentiation measures were moderate, with a mean FST of 0.074, GST of 0.081 and RST of 0.085. Percentages of variation among and within populations were 7.5 and 92.5, respectively. Bayesian clustering analyses pointed out a population subdivision in 16 clusters, however, no correlation between geographical distances and genetic differences was found. Management factors such as the limited exchange of animals between farmers (estimated gene flow Nm = 3.08 mostly due to sanitary and social constraints could be the major causes affecting Guadarrama goat population subdivision. Conclusion Genetic diversity measures revealed a good status of biodiversity in the Guadarrama goat breed. Since diseases are the first cause affecting the census in this breed, population subdivision would be an advantage for its conservation. However, to maintain private alleles present at low frequencies in such small populations minimizing the inbreeding rate, it would necessitate some mating designs of animals carrying such alleles among populations. The systematic use of molecular markers will

  5. High urban breeding densities do not disrupt genetic monogamy in a bird species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sol Rodriguez-Martínez

    Full Text Available Urbanization causes widespread endangerment of biodiversity worldwide. However, some species successfully colonize cities reaching higher densities than in their rural habitats. In these cases, although urban city dwellers may apparently be taking advantage of these new environments, they also face new ecological conditions that may induce behavioural changes. For example, the frequency of alternative reproductive behaviours such as extra-pair paternity and intraspecific brood parasitism might increase with breeding densities. Here, using a panel of 17 microsatellites, we tested whether increments in breeding densities such as those associated with urban invasion processes alter genetic monogamy in the burrowing owl Athene cunicularia. Our results show low rates of extra-pair paternity (1.47%, but relatively high levels of intraspecific brood parasitism (8.82%. However, we were not able to detect differences in the frequency at which either alternative reproductive behaviour occurs along a strong breeding density gradient. Further research is needed to properly ascertain the role of other social and ecological factors in the frequency at which this species presents alternative reproductive strategies. Meanwhile, our results suggest that genetic monogamy is maintained despite the increment in conspecific density associated with a recent urban invasion process.

  6. Microsatellite based genetic diversity and population structure of the endangered Spanish Guadarrama goat breed

    OpenAIRE

    Jurado Juan J; González Carmen; Cuevas Javier; Marcos-Carcavilla Ane; Martínez Marta; Calvo Jorge H; Serrano Magdalena; de Tejada Paloma

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Background Assessing genetic biodiversity and population structure of minor breeds through the information provided by neutral molecular markers, allows determination of their extinction risk and to design strategies for their management and conservation. Analysis of microsatellite loci is known to be highly informative in the reconstruction of the historical processes underlying the evolution and differentiation of animal populations. Guadarrama goat is a threatened Spanish breed wh...

  7. Multiple Stressors in a Top Predator Seabird: Potential Ecological Consequences of Environmental Contaminants, Population Health and Breeding Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bustnes, Jan O; Bourgeon, Sophie; Leat, Eliza H K; Magnusdóttir, Ellen; Strøm, Hallvard; Hanssen, Sveinn A; Petersen, Aevar; Olafsdóttir, Kristin; Borgå, Katrine; Gabrielsen, Geir W; Furness, Robert W

    2015-01-01

    Environmental contaminants may have impacts on reproduction and survival in wildlife populations suffering from multiple stressors. This study examined whether adverse effects of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) increased with poor population health and breeding conditions in three colonies (60-74°N) of great skua (Stercorarius skua) in the north-eastern Atlantic (Shetland, Iceland and Bjørnøya [Bear Island]). POPs (organochlorines [OCs] and polybrominated diphenyl ethers [BDEs]) were measured in plasma of incubating birds (n = 222), concentrations differing nearly tenfold among colonies: Bjørnøya (2009) > Bjørnøya (2010) > Iceland (2009) > Shetland (2009). Reproductive success (hatching success and chick survival) showed that breeding conditions were favourable in Shetland and at Bjørnøya (2010), but were very poor in Iceland and at Bjørnøya (2009). Biomarkers indicated that health was poor in the Shetland population compared to the other populations. Females whose chicks hatched late had high POP concentrations in all colonies except at Bjørnøya (2010), and females losing their eggs at Bjørnøya (2009) tended to have higher concentrations than those hatching. Moreover, there was a negative relationship between female POP concentrations and chick body condition at hatching in Iceland and at Bjørnøya (2010). Supplementary feeding experiments were conducted, and in Iceland where feeding conditions were poor, significant negative relationships were found between female POP concentrations and daily growth-rate in first-hatched chicks of control nests, but not in food supplemented nests. This suggests that negative impacts of POPs were mitigated by improved feeding conditions. For second-chicks, there was a strong negative relationship between the female POP concentrations and growth-rate, but no effects of supplementary feeding. Lowered adult return-rate between breeding seasons with increasing POP loads were found both at Bjørnøya (2009) and in

  8. Effects of overgrowing at Cerknica Polje (southern Slovenia on breeding farmland birds/ Vpliv zaraščanja Cerkniškega polja (južna Slovenija na gnezdilke kmetijske krajine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bordjan Dejan

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Agriculture has a great impact on biodiversity in Europe. Populations of farmland birds are declining due to both intensification and abandonment of agriculture. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of overgrowing on the diversity of birds at Cerknica Polje. Six vegetation types were identified on eight survey plots (15.2-31.6 ha each: Short grass - regularly mown wet meadows; Tall herbs - stands of Common Reed Phragmites australis and Reed Canary Grass Phalaris arundinacea; Sparse bushes - stands of low woody plants; Dense bushes - dense stands of bushes; Meadows with trees - mown meadows with scattered trees; Bushes with trees - hedges, trees and dense stands of bushes. In total, 34 species were registered. The heterogeneity of vegetation types correlated positively with the heterogeneity of bird species. The highest density of breeding territories and species was established in Bushes with trees, the lowest in Short grass. No species were registered in all vegetation types, and only Tree Pipit was recorded in five out of six types. Twelve species were registered in only one vegetation type. Cerknica Polje is an important breeding locality for species with the highest breeding density at the national level (e.g. Corncrake Crex crex, Curlew Numenius arquata, Skylark Alauda arvensis, Whinchat Saxicola rubetra, Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus. These species breed in specific habitats with different stages of succession. A managing plan for the area should therefore combine abandoned plots in different stages of succession and large regularly mown areas. Abandonment of agriculture at Cerknica Polje has led to the emergence of areas with bushes in different succession stages. Efforts should be directed at preserving large complexes of mown wet meadows.

  9. Landscape factors and hydrology influence mercury concentrations in wading birds breeding in the Florida Everglades, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herring, Garth; Eagles-Smith, Collin A; Ackerman, Joshua T; Gawlik, Dale E; Beerens, James M

    2013-08-01

    The hydrology of wetland ecosystems is a key driver of both mercury (Hg) methylation and waterbird foraging ecology, and hence may play a fundamental role in waterbird exposure and risk to Hg contamination. However, few studies have investigated hydrological factors that influence waterbird Hg exposure. We examined how several landscape-level hydrological variables influenced Hg concentrations in great egret and white ibis adults and chicks in the Florida Everglades. The great egret is a visual "exploiter" species that tolerates lower prey densities and is less sensitive to hydrological conditions than is the white ibis, which is a tactile "searcher" species that pursues higher prey densities in shallow water. Mercury concentrations in adult great egrets were most influenced by the spatial region that they occupied in the Everglades (higher in the southern region); whereas the number of days a site was dry during the previous dry season was the most important factor influencing Hg concentrations in adult ibis (Hg concentrations increased with the number of days dry). In contrast, Hg concentrations in egret chicks were most influenced by calendar date (increasing with date), whereas Hg concentrations in ibis chicks were most influenced by chick age, region, and water recession rate (Hg concentrations decreased with age, were higher in the southern regions, and increased with positive water recession rates). Our results indicate that both recent (preceding two weeks) hydrological conditions, and those of the prior year, influence Hg concentrations in wading birds. Further, these results suggest that Hg exposure in wading birds is driven by complex relationships between wading bird behavior and life stage, landscape hydrologic patterns, and biogeochemical processes.

  10. Landscape factors and hydrology influence mercury concentrations in wading birds breeding in the Florida Everglades, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herring, Garth; Eagles-Smith, Collin A; Ackerman, Joshua T; Gawlik, Dale E; Beerens, James M

    2013-08-01

    The hydrology of wetland ecosystems is a key driver of both mercury (Hg) methylation and waterbird foraging ecology, and hence may play a fundamental role in waterbird exposure and risk to Hg contamination. However, few studies have investigated hydrological factors that influence waterbird Hg exposure. We examined how several landscape-level hydrological variables influenced Hg concentrations in great egret and white ibis adults and chicks in the Florida Everglades. The great egret is a visual "exploiter" species that tolerates lower prey densities and is less sensitive to hydrological conditions than is the white ibis, which is a tactile "searcher" species that pursues higher prey densities in shallow water. Mercury concentrations in adult great egrets were most influenced by the spatial region that they occupied in the Everglades (higher in the southern region); whereas the number of days a site was dry during the previous dry season was the most important factor influencing Hg concentrations in adult ibis (Hg concentrations increased with the number of days dry). In contrast, Hg concentrations in egret chicks were most influenced by calendar date (increasing with date), whereas Hg concentrations in ibis chicks were most influenced by chick age, region, and water recession rate (Hg concentrations decreased with age, were higher in the southern regions, and increased with positive water recession rates). Our results indicate that both recent (preceding two weeks) hydrological conditions, and those of the prior year, influence Hg concentrations in wading birds. Further, these results suggest that Hg exposure in wading birds is driven by complex relationships between wading bird behavior and life stage, landscape hydrologic patterns, and biogeochemical processes. PMID:23707869

  11. Identification of Putative Wintering Areas and Ecological Determinants of Population Dynamics of Common House-Martin (Delichon urbicum and Common Swift (Apus apus Breeding in Northern Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciano Bani

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available To identify the causes of population decline in migratory birds, researchers must determine the relative influence of environmental changes on population dynamics while the birds are on breeding grounds, wintering grounds, and en route between the two. This is problematic when the wintering areas of specific populations are unknown. Here, we first identified the putative wintering areas of Common House-Martin (Delichon urbicum and Common Swift (Apus apus populations breeding in northern Italy as those areas, within the wintering ranges of these species, where the winter Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, which may affect winter survival, best predicted annual variation in population indices observed in the breeding grounds in 1992–2009. In these analyses, we controlled for the potentially confounding effects of rainfall in the breeding grounds during the previous year, which may affect reproductive success; the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAO, which may account for climatic conditions faced by birds during migration; and the linear and squared term of year, which account for nonlinear population trends. The areas thus identified ranged from Guinea to Nigeria for the Common House-Martin, and were located in southern Ghana for the Common Swift. We then regressed annual population indices on mean NDVI values in the putative wintering areas and on the other variables, and used Bayesian model averaging (BMA and hierarchical partitioning (HP of variance to assess their relative contribution to population dynamics. We re-ran all the analyses using NDVI values at different spatial scales, and consistently found that our population of Common House-Martin was primarily affected by spring rainfall (43%–47.7% explained variance and NDVI (24%–26.9%, while the Common Swift population was primarily affected by the NDVI (22.7%–34.8%. Although these results must be further validated, currently they are the only hypotheses about the

  12. Agricultural Set-aside Programs and Grassland Birds: Insights from Broad-scale Population Trends

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Riffell

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP is a voluntary set-aside program in the United States designed to amelioratesoil erosion, control crop overproduction, enhance water quality, and provide wildlife habitat by replacing crops with other forms of land cover. Because CRP includes primarily grass habitats, it has great potential to benefitdeclining North American grassland bird populations. We looked at the change in national and state population trends of grassland birds and related changes to cover-specific CRP variables (previous research grouped all CRP practices. Changes in national trends after the initiation of the CRP were inconclusive, but we observed signficant bird-CRP relations at the state level. Most bird-CRP relations were positive, except for some species associated with habitats that CRP replaced. Practice- and configuration-specific CRP variables were related to grassland bird trends, rather than a generic measure of all CRP types combined. Considering all CRP land as a single, distinct habitat type may obscure actual relations between birds and set-aside characteristics. Understanding and predictingthe effects of set-aside programs (like CRP or agri-environment schemes on grassland birds is complex and difficult. Because available broad-scale datasets are less than adequate, studies should be conducted at a variety of spatial and temporal scales.

  13. Enhancement of Linear Agricultural Areas to Provide Invertebrates as Potential Food for Breeding Birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracy R. Evans

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Birds are an important part of the agricultural landscape, as having nature value, but also as pest control agents and bio-indicators for the health of the environment. Here we look at linear non-crop elements in agricultural areas as a potential source of food for nestlings of avian species. We measured invertebrate availability as it relates to structural complexity at the local and landscape levels in three counties in central Illinois. Invertebrates were measured with taxonomic diversity, abundance, and estimated biomass during spring of 2012 and 2013. Our study shows that easily modifiable field edge characteristics have the greatest impact on invertebrate diversity and abundance, as compared to field and landscape features. This finding shows that a potential invertebrate food source as measured by both diversity and biomass, may be easily enhanced without changes to agricultural practices.

  14. Genetic evaluation of the breeding population of a valuable reforestation conifer Platycladus orientalis (Cupressaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Yuqing; Ma, Yongpeng; Wang, Shun; Hu, Xian-Ge; Huang, Li-Sha; Li, Yue; Wang, Xiao-Ru; Mao, Jian-Feng

    2016-10-01

    Platycladus orientalis, a widespread conifer with long lifespan and significant adaptability. It is much used in reforestation in north China and commonly planted in central Asia. With the increasing demand for plantation forest in central to north China, breeding programs are progressively established for this species. Efficient use of breeding resources requires good understanding of the genetic value of the founder breeding materials. This study investigated the distribution of genetic variation in 192 elite trees collected for the breeding program for the central range of the species. We developed first set of 27 polymorphic EST-derived SSR loci for the species from transcriptome/genome data. After examination of amplification quality, 10 loci were used to evaluate the genetic variation in the breeding population. We found moderate genetic diversity (average He = 0.348) and low population differentiation (Fst = 0.011). Extensive admixture and no significant geographic population structure characterized this set of collections. Our analyses of the diversity and population structure are important steps toward a long-term sustainable deployment of the species and provide valuable genetic information for conservation and breeding applications.

  15. SNP variation in ADRB3 gene reflects the breed difference of sheep populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jianliang; Qiao, Liying; Liu, Jianhua; Yuan, Yanan; Liu, Wenzhong

    2012-08-01

    The β3-adrenergic receptor (ADRB3), a G-protein coupled receptor, plays a major role in energy metabolism and regulation of lipolysis and homeostasis. We detect the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) variation in full-length sequence of ovine ADRB3 gene in 12 domestic sheep populations within four types by polymerase chain reaction-single strand conformation polymorphism and sequencing to reveal the breed difference. Twenty-two SNPs, 12 of which in the exon 1 and ten in the intron, were detected, and 12 new exonic and four new intronic SNPs were found. Most SNPs presented in Shanxi Dam Line and least ones in Dorset. The average SNP number in both meat and dual purpose for meat and wool breeds was significantly higher than general and dual purpose breeds for wool and meat. Frequency of each SNP in studied breeds or types was different. The 18C Del and 1617T Ins majorly existed in dual purpose breeds for wool and meat. The 25A Del, 119C>G and 130C>T were mostly found in the meat and dual purpose for meat and wool breeds. The 1764C>A more frequently presented in meat than in other types. The majority of variations came from within the populations as suggested by analysis of molecular variance. Close relationship presented among the Chinese and western breeds, respectively. In conclusion, SNPs of ovine ADRB3 gene can reflect the breed difference and within- and between-population variations, and to a great extent, the breed relationship. PMID:22711302

  16. Breeding season food limitation drives population decline of the Little Owl Athene noctua in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thorup, Kasper; Sunde, Peter; Jacobsen, Lars B.;

    2010-01-01

    of seasonally changing land cover (mostly farmland) within a 1-km radius around nests as well as temperatures before and during the breeding season. Experimental food supplementation to breeding pairs increased the proportion of eggs that resulted in fledged young from 27 to 79%, supporting the hypothesis...... that the main proximate reason underlying the ongoing population decline is reduced productivity induced by energetic constraints after egg-laying. Conservation efforts should target enhancement of food availability during the breeding season. Other farmland species dependent on large invertebrates are likely...... to share the problems that Little Owls face in modern agricultural landscapes...

  17. Contributions of Weather and Predation to Reduced Breeding Success in a Threatened Northern Loggerhead Shrike Population

    OpenAIRE

    Douglas M. Collister; Scott Wilson

    2007-01-01

    Populations on the periphery of a species' range may experience more severe environmental conditions relative to populations closer to the core of the range. As a consequence, peripheral populations may have lower reproductive success or survival, which may affect their persistence. In this study, we examined the influence of environmental conditions on breeding biology and nest survival in a threatened population of Loggerhead Shrikes (Lanius ludovicianus) at the northern limit of the r...

  18. Climate change and the increasing impact of polar bears on bird populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jouke eProp

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The Arctic is becoming warmer at a high rate, and contractions in the extent of sea ice are currently changing the habitats of marine top-predators dependent on ice. Polar bears (Ursus maritimus depend on sea ice for hunting seals. For these top-predators, longer ice-free seasons are hypothesized to force the bears to hunt for alternative terrestrial food, such as eggs from colonial breeding birds. We analyzed time-series of polar bear observations at four locations on Spitsbergen (Svalbard and one in east Greenland. Summer occurrence of polar bears, measured as the probability of encountering bears and the number of days with bear presence, has increased significantly from the 1970/80s to the present. The shifts in polar bear occurrence coincided with trends for shorter sea ice seasons and less sea ice during the spring in the study area. This resulted in a strong inverse relationship between the probability of bear encounters on land and the length of the sea ice season. Within ten years after their first appearance on land, polar bears had advanced their arrival dates by almost 30 days. Direct observations of nest predation showed that polar bears may severely affect reproductive success of the barnacle goose (Branta leucopsis, common eider (Somateria mollissima and glaucous gull (Larus hyperboreus. Nest predation was strongest in years when the polar bears arrived well before hatch, with more than 90% of all nests being predated. The results are similar to findings from Canada, and large-scale processes, such as climate and subsequent habitat changes, are pinpointed as the most likely drivers in various parts of the Arctic. We suggest that the increasing, earlier appearance of bears on land in summer reflects behavioral adaptations by a small segment of the population to cope with a reduced hunting range on sea ice. This exemplifies how behavioral adaptations may contribute to the cascading effects of climate change.

  19. HUMIDIFICATION AS A FACTOR OF STRUCTURIAL ORGANIZATION OF BIRD POPULATIONS IN THE WOOD STANDS OF THE BIOSPHERE RESERVE ASKANIA NOVA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. A. Listopadsky

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The influence of different humidification types towards appearance of forest vegetation conditions on spatial organization of birds in the wood stands is analyzed. Population density, coefficient of occurrence, and informative connection with six types of soil humidification are given for 53 bird species. The informative estimation of every humidification type is determined for every bird species. Thereby it is definitely a contribution of every gradation of edaphic factor to the structural genesis of dendrophilous bird communities. The strongest informative connection between humidity gradients and the avifauna structure of the wood stands is available in dry edaphotopes for margin representatives and fresh one for typical forest species. These two humidification types play a start function in the structural genesis of some blocks of dendrophilous bird communities per se. It is determined that change of bird species of forest-steppe faunogenetic complex by species from Nemoral complex undergoes in most cases on the border of the gradient between fresh and humid edaphotopes. For 53 species of birds from dendrophilous complex is was revealed that the importance of different levels of soil moisture has a different impact in shaping of the modern structure dendrophilous avifauna. Dry and especially drily edaphotopes determine the spatial structure of the species that are of forest-steppe origin and belong to the representatives of the optional component of dendrophilous bird communities. Wet edafotopes are involved in the formation of the spatial structure of species of predominantly immoral origin and relate to the obligate component of representatives of dendrophilous bitd comminities. Gradient wetting of edaphotopes on the verge of ‘linked’/’fresh’ is restructuring for the bird communities. It takes an optional replacement red communists feature to obligate. Stands rather dry and fresh items currently being the most active formation of

  20. Development of a practical modeling framework for estimating the impact of wind technology on bird populations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    One of the most pressing environmental concerns related to wind project development is the potential for avian fatalities caused by the turbines. The goal of this project is to develop a useful, practical modeling framework for evaluating potential wind power plant impacts that can be generalized to most bird species. This modeling framework could be used to get a preliminary understanding of the likelihood of significant impacts to birds, in a cost-effective way. The authors accomplish this by (1) reviewing the major factors that can influence the persistence of a wild population; (2) briefly reviewing various models that can aid in estimating population status and trend, including methods of evaluating model structure and performance; (3) reviewing survivorship and population projections; and (4) developing a framework for using models to evaluate the potential impacts of wind development on birds

  1. Development of a practical modeling framework for estimating the impact of wind technology on bird populations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morrison, M.L. [California State Univ., Sacramento, CA (United States); Pollock, K.H. [North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC (United States)

    1997-11-01

    One of the most pressing environmental concerns related to wind project development is the potential for avian fatalities caused by the turbines. The goal of this project is to develop a useful, practical modeling framework for evaluating potential wind power plant impacts that can be generalized to most bird species. This modeling framework could be used to get a preliminary understanding of the likelihood of significant impacts to birds, in a cost-effective way. The authors accomplish this by (1) reviewing the major factors that can influence the persistence of a wild population; (2) briefly reviewing various models that can aid in estimating population status and trend, including methods of evaluating model structure and performance; (3) reviewing survivorship and population projections; and (4) developing a framework for using models to evaluate the potential impacts of wind development on birds.

  2. Bayesian cross-validation for model evaluation and selection, with application to the North American Breeding Bird Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Link, William; Sauer, John R.

    2016-01-01

    The analysis of ecological data has changed in two important ways over the last 15 years. The development and easy availability of Bayesian computational methods has allowed and encouraged the fitting of complex hierarchical models. At the same time, there has been increasing emphasis on acknowledging and accounting for model uncertainty. Unfortunately, the ability to fit complex models has outstripped the development of tools for model selection and model evaluation: familiar model selection tools such as Akaike's information criterion and the deviance information criterion are widely known to be inadequate for hierarchical models. In addition, little attention has been paid to the evaluation of model adequacy in context of hierarchical modeling, i.e., to the evaluation of fit for a single model. In this paper, we describe Bayesian cross-validation, which provides tools for model selection and evaluation. We describe the Bayesian predictive information criterion and a Bayesian approximation to the BPIC known as the Watanabe-Akaike information criterion. We illustrate the use of these tools for model selection, and the use of Bayesian cross-validation as a tool for model evaluation, using three large data sets from the North American Breeding Bird Survey.

  3. Seasonal distribution of meadow birds in relation to in-field heterogeneity and management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhulst, Jort; Kleijn, David; Loonen, Willem; Berendse, Frank; Smit, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Effectiveness of European initiatives to restore populations of meadow breeding waders is heavily debated. We studied field preference of meadow birds throughout the breeding season in four areas of over 100 ha each and related observed patterns of individual birds to in-field heterogeneity, sward h

  4. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations for preweaning traits of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1991-03-01

    The effects of heterosis for gestation length, dystocia, calf survival, birth weight, 200-d weight, and ADG from birth to weaning were evaluated in F1, F2, and combined F3 and F4 generations in three composite populations. Breed effects were evaluated for the nine parental breeds (Red Poll, Hereford, Angus, Limousin, Braunvieh, Pinzgauer, Gelbvieh, Simmental, and Charolais) that contributed to the three composite populations. Breed effects were significant for all traits evaluated except survival at birth. The large differences among breeds in additive direct and additive maternal genetic effects offer a great opportunity to use the genetic differences among breeds to achieve and maintain optimum additive genetic (breed) composition to match genetic resources to a wide range of production-marketing ecosystems. There was no heterosis for gestation length. Mean heterosis for dystocia was significant estimated in F1 but not in F2 or in the combined F3 and F4 generations. Mean heterosis was not significant in any generation for survival at birth, to 72 h, and to weaning for the F1 generation; mean heterosis was significant for survival to weaning for the F2 generation and approached significance (P = .06) for the combined F3 and F4 generations. Mean heterosis over all composite populations and heterosis for each composite population were significant in all generations for weight at birth and at 200 d and for ADG from birth to weaning. Retained heterosis was not less than expected from retained heterozygosity in composite populations for the traits evaluated. These results suggest that heterosis for these traits likely is due to dominance effects and, thus, can be attributed to the recovery of accumulated inbreeding depression in the parental breeds.

  5. Breeding site heterogeneity reduces variability in frog recruitment and population dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaffery, Rebecca M.; Eby, Lisa A.; Maxell, Bryce A.; Corn, Paul Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Environmental stochasticity can have profound effects on the dynamics and viability of wild populations, and habitat heterogeneity provides one mechanism by which populations may be buffered against the negative effects of environmental fluctuations. Heterogeneity in breeding pond hydroperiod across the landscape may allow amphibian populations to persist despite variable interannual precipitation. We examined recruitment dynamics over 10 yr in a high-elevation Columbia spotted frog (Rana luteiventris) population that breeds in ponds with a variety of hydroperiods. We combined these data with matrix population models to quantify the consequences of heterogeneity in pond hydroperiod on net recruitment (i.e. number of metamorphs produced) and population growth rates. We compared our heterogeneous system to hypothetical homogeneous environments with only ephemeral ponds, only semi-permanent ponds, and only permanent ponds. We also examined the effects of breeding pond habitat loss on population growth rates. Most eggs were laid in permanent ponds each year, but survival to metamorphosis was highest in the semi-permanent ponds. Recruitment success varied by both year and pond type. Net recruitment and stochastic population growth rate were highest under a scenario with homogeneous semi-permanent ponds, but variability in recruitment was lowest in the scenario with the observed heterogeneity in hydroperiods. Loss of pond habitat decreased population growth rate, with greater decreases associated with loss of permanent and semi-permanent habitat. The presence of a diversity of pond hydroperiods on the landscape will influence population dynamics, including reducing variability in recruitment in an uncertain climatic future.

  6. Results of the of wintering bird populations monitoring in the region of Nizhnee Prisurye

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ekaterina S. Preobrazhenskaya

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The monitoring of wintering bird populations in the region of Nizhnee Prisurie on the territory of Chuvash Republic was carried out in 1989–1990. From 2000 censuses were conducted on the territory of the nature reserve "Prisurskiy" and the National Park "Chavash Varmane". These regular censuses were called project "Parus" by the Menzbir Ornithological Society of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The last ten years they were also included in the overall-Russian campaign "Euro-Asian Christmas Bird Counts" project from the Russian Birds Conservation Union. During these 20 years there were 44 bird species registered in the studied area. Eleven of them are marked by single or rare. Four species - Regulus regulus, Aegithalos caudatus, Spinus spinus and Carduelis carduelis – increased their abundance from 1990 till the middle 2000-s and then – decreased. Dendrocopos minor showed the opposite trend. The abundance of 13 species in the 1990-s was higher, sometimes significantly, than in the 2000s and 2010s. The reason may be searched in the differences between the censuses areas in 1990s and 2000s. However, the decreasing of the population densities is typical for other forest species, not only in Nizhnee Prisurie, but also in other model territories. In general, during the last 25 years we can see negative trends in the population dynamics of wintering bird species within the East European plain.

  7. Climate change and the increasing impact of polar bears on bird populations

    OpenAIRE

    Prop, Jouke; Aars, Jon; Bårdsen, Bård-Jørgen; Hanssen, Sveinn A; Bech, Claus; Bourgeon, Sophie; de Fouw, Jimmy; Gabrielsen, Geir W; Lang, Johannes; Noreen, Elin; Oudman, Thomas; Sittler, Benoit; Stempniewicz, Lech; Tombre, Ingunn; Wolters, Eva

    2015-01-01

    The Arctic is becoming warmer at a high rate, and contractions in the extent of sea ice are currently changing the habitats of marine top-predators dependent on ice. Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) depend on sea ice for hunting seals. For these top-predators, longer ice-free seasons are hypothesized to force the bears to hunt for alternative terrestrial food, such as eggs from colonial breeding birds. We analyzed time-series of polar bear observations at four locations on Spitsbergen (Svalbard)...

  8. Testing the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis with bird populations as habitat-specific environmental indicators: evidence from Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lantz, Van; Martínez-Espiñeira, Roberto

    2008-04-01

    The traditional environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) hypothesis postulates that environmental degradation follows an inverted U-shaped relationship with gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. We tested the EKC hypothesis with bird populations in 5 different habitats as environmental quality indicators. Because birds are considered environmental goods, for them the EKC hypothesis would instead be associated with a U-shaped relationship between bird populations and GDP per capita. In keeping with the literature, we included other variables in the analysis-namely, human population density and time index variables (the latter variable captured the impact of persistent and exogenous climate and/or policy changes on bird populations over time). Using data from 9 Canadian provinces gathered over 37 years, we used a generalized least-squares regression for each bird habitat type, which accounted for the panel structure of the data, the cross-sectional dependence across provinces in the residuals, heteroskedasticity, and fixed- or random-effect specifications of the models. We found evidence that supports the EKC hypothesis for 3 of the 5 bird population habitat types. In addition, the relationship between human population density and the different bird populations varied, which emphasizes the complex nature of the impact that human populations have on the environment. The relationship between the time-index variable and the different bird populations also varied, which indicates there are other persistent and significant influences on bird populations over time. Overall our EKC results were consistent with those found for threatened bird species, indicating that economic prosperity does indeed act to benefit some bird populations.

  9. Breeding common bean populations for traits using selection index

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dayane Cristina Lima

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available A common bean (Phaseolus vulgarisL. cultivar must combine desirable genotypes for several traits in order to be accepted by producers and consumers. This study aimed to evaluate selection efficiency when segregating bean populations for traits, by means of a selection index, in order to obtain superior progenies for traits considered. A total of 16 populations from the F4 and F5generations were evaluated in 2011 and 2012, respectively. The traits evaluated were plant architecture, plant disease, grain type and yield. Using standard scores (Z, the sum of the four traits (∑Z was obtained and, based on this information, the best populations were identified. The evaluation of selection effectiveness was performed on 31 progenies from each population. The 496 progenies plus eight controls were evaluated in the F5:6and F5:7 generations for the same traits in July and November 2012, respectively. The selection, using the index based on the sum of standardized variables (∑Z, was efficient for identifying populations with superior progenies for all the traits considered.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-09-01

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

  11. Habitat selection by breeding waterbirds at ponds with size-structured fish populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloskowski, Janusz; Nieoczym, Marek; Polak, Marcin; Pitucha, Piotr

    2010-07-01

    Fish may significantly affect habitat use by birds, either as their prey or as competitors. Fish communities are often distinctly size-structured, but the consequences for waterbird assemblages remain poorly understood. We examined the effects of size structure of common carp ( Cyprinus carpio) cohorts together with other biotic and abiotic pond characteristics on the distribution of breeding waterbirds in a seminatural system of monocultured ponds, where three fish age classes were separately stocked. Fish age corresponded to a distinct fish size gradient. Fish age and total biomass, macroinvertebrate and amphibian abundance, and emergent vegetation best explained the differences in bird density between ponds. Abundance of animal prey other than fish (aquatic macroinvertebrates and larval amphibians) decreased with increasing carp age in the ponds. Densities of ducks and smaller grebes were strongly negatively associated with fish age/size gradient. The largest of the grebes, the piscivorous great crested grebe ( Podiceps cristatus), was the only species that preferred ponds with medium-sized fish and was positively associated with total fish biomass. Habitat selection by bitterns and most rallids was instead strongly influenced by the relative amount of emergent vegetation cover in the ponds. Our results show that fish size structure may be an important cue for breeding habitat choice and a factor affording an opportunity for niche diversification in avian communities.

  12. The impacts of roads and other infrastructure on mammal and bird populations: A meta-analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Benítez-López, A.; Alkemade, R.; Verweij, P.A.

    2010-01-01

    Biodiversity is being lost at an increased rate as a result of human activities. One of the major threats to biodiversity is infrastructural development. We used meta-analyses to study the effects of infrastructure proximity on mammal and bird populations. Data were gathered from 49 studies on 234 m

  13. Seasonal distribution of bird populations at the Patuxent Research Refuge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, D.J.; Henny, C.J.; Hill, E.F.; Keith, J.A.; Grove, R.A.

    2000-01-01

    High concentrations of mercury from past mining activities have accumulated in the food chain of fish-eating birds nesting along the mid to lower Carson River. Activities of nine plasma and tissue enzymes, and concentrations of other plasma and tissue constituents were measured for black-crowned night-heron, Nycticorax nycticorax, (BCNH) and snowy egret, Egretta thula, (SE) nestlings from two high mercury sites and one low mercury site. Geometric mean blood Hg concentrations for BCNHs at the high mercury sites were 2.6 and 2.8 ppm (ww) and 0.6 ppm at the low mercury site. Blood concentrations for SEs were 3.6 and 1.9 ppm at the high mercury sites and 0.7 ppm at the low mercury site. In BCNHs plasma glutathione peroxidase (GSH peroxidase) activity was lower in both high mercury sites relative to the low mercury site. Butyryl cholinesterase (BuChe), ALT, glutathione reductase (GSSG-reductase) and LDH-L activities were lower in one high mercury site. In SEs significant differences were lower BuChe and LDH-L, but elevated GGT activities. Evidence of renal stress in both species at high mercury sites included increased plasma uric acid, blood urea nitrogen, and creatinine concentrations as well as oxidative stress in the kidney tissue itself where oxidized glutathione increased. A number of the mercury site-related effects, including decreased plasma GSH-peroxidase and hepatic G-6-PDH activities, higher GSSG-reductase activity, and lower hepatic concentrations of reduced thiols have been reported in methylmercury feeding studies with great egrets and mallards. These findings suggest the utility of herons and egrets for monitoring mercury sites.

  14. Sea Surface Temperatures Mediated by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation Affect Birds Breeding in Temperate Coastal Rain Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony J. Gaston

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available We studied the timing of breeding and juvenile/adult ratios among songbirds in temperate rain forests over four years on the Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands archipelago, British Columbia. In May 1998, air temperatures in Haida Gwaii were above average, whereas in 1999 they were the lowest in 20 yr: temperatures in the other two years were closer to normal, although 2001 was almost as cold as 1999. Temperatures closely followed the patterns of sea surface temperatures created by the 1997–1998 El Niño, i.e., warm, event and the subsequent strong La Niña, i.e., cool, event. Timing of breeding, as measured by the first capture of juveniles or by direct observations of hatching, varied by approximately 19 d between the earliest (1998 and latest (1999 years. In 1998, the proportion of juveniles among birds trapped increased steeply as soon as young birds began to appear. In other years, the rate of increase was slower. In 1999, the peak proportions of hatching-year individuals among the foliage-gleaning insectivores, i.e., the Orange-crowned Warbler (Vermivora celata, Townsend's Warbler (Dendroica townsendi, and the Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa, were lower than in other years, with almost no young Orange-crowned Warblers captured at all. The pattern of variation in the timing of breeding and in the proportion of hatching-year individuals trapped fitted the temperature data well, although rainfall may also have contributed. We concluded that changes mediated by El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO in sea surface temperatures off northern British Columbia, through their effects on air temperatures, had a strong effect on the breeding of forest birds, to the point of causing nearly complete reproductive failure for one species in 1999. An intensification of the ENSO cycle could lead to more erratic reproduction for some species.

  15. Personality and basal metabolic rate in a wild bird population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouwhuis, Sandra; Quinn, John L.; Sheldon, Ben C.; Verhulst, Simon

    2014-01-01

    Personality and metabolic rate are predicted to show covariance on methodological and functional grounds, but empirical studies at the individual level are rare, especially in natural populations. Here we assess the relationship between exploration behaviour, an important axis of personality, and ba

  16. Population genetic structure and colony breeding system in dampwood termites (Zootermopsis angusticollis and Z. nevadensis nuttingi)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studies describing the population genetic structure and breeding system of basal lineages of termite species remain rare. Such species, however, may reveal ancestral life history attributes potentially influential in the evolution of eusociality within the Order Isoptera. Through the development and...

  17. An assessment of population structure in eight breeds of cattle using a whole genome SNP panel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Analyses of population structure and breed diversity have provided insight into the origin and evolution of cattle. Previously, these studies have used a low density of microsatellite markers, however, with the large number of single nucleotide polymorphism markers that are now available, it is poss...

  18. Evaluation of population-level ecological risks of fish-eating birds to dioxinlike PCBs exposure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Naito, Wataru; Yoshida, Kikuo [National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Research Center for Chemical Risk Management, Tsukuba (Japan); Murata, Mariko [National Institute of Technology and Evaluation, Tokyo (Japan)

    2004-09-15

    Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/DFs) and some non- and monoortho- polychlorinated biphenyl congeners that can attain planar configuration (dioxinlike PCBs), which are chemically stable and persistent, are thought to be biomagnified via foodchain. Many studies have revealed that higher levels of these compounds have been observed in fish-eating birds, a top consumer in aquatic biota. Among these compounds, Dioxinlike PCBs has contributed more than 80% of the total TEQs found in eggs of fish-eating birds. In order to evaluate the effects of these compounds on fish-eating birds, therefore, it is important to elucidate exposure pathways and characteristics of dioxinlike PCBs. The conventional ecological risk assessment method of chemicals entails comparing the predicted no effect concentration (PNEC) determined from laboratory toxicity tests with the predicted or observed concentration in a target organism or a surrounding environmental media. Utilizing such a result of simplistic individual-level effect to draw conclusions regarding chemical effects on population is, however, questionable. Since risk management decisions should be based on protecting populations, the methods for population-level ecological risk assessment of chemicals have been of increasing interest for risk assessors and managers. In this study, a population-level ecological risk assessment of dioxinlike PCBs on fish-eating birds was performed to judge the need for risk management measures to protect aquatic wildlife from dioxinlike PCBs contamination in Japan. Egg mortality risk and the changes in population growth rate, {lambda}, in relation to the contamination levels of dioxinlike PCBs in eggs of four different types of fish-eating birds were determined by integrating the results from both bioaccumulation and life-history models.

  19. A population genetic database of cat breeds developed in coordination with a domestic cat STR multiplex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; David, Victor A; Weir, Bruce S; O'Brien, Stephen J

    2012-05-01

    A simple tandem repeat (STR) PCR-based typing system developed for the genetic individualization of domestic cat samples has been used to generate a population genetic database of domestic cat breeds. A panel of 10 tetranucleotide STR loci and a gender-identifying sequence tagged site (STS) were co-amplified in genomic DNA of 1043 individuals representing 38 cat breeds. The STR panel exhibits relatively high heterozygosity in cat breeds, with an average 10-locus heterozygosity of 0.71, which represents an average of 38 breed-specific heterozygosities for the 10-member panel. When the entire set of breed individuals was analyzed as a single population, a heterozygosity of 0.87 was observed. Heterozygosities obtained for the 10 loci range from 0.72 to 0.96. The power for genetic individualization of domestic cat samples of the multiplex is high, with a probability of match (p(m)) of 6.2E-14, using a conservative θ = 0.05.

  20. Breeding Bird Community Continues to Colonize Riparian Buffers Ten Years after Harvest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott F Pearson

    Full Text Available Riparian ecosystems integrate aquatic and terrestrial communities and often contain unique assemblages of flora and fauna. Retention of forested buffers along riparian habitats is a commonly employed practice to reduce potential negative effects of land use on aquatic systems. However, very few studies have examined long-term population and community responses to buffers, leading to considerable uncertainty about effectiveness of this practice for achieving conservation and management outcomes. We examined short- (1-2 years and long-term (~10 years avian community responses (occupancy and abundance to riparian buffer prescriptions to clearcut logging silvicultural practices in the Pacific Northwest USA. We used a Before-After-Control-Impact experimental approach and temporally replicated point counts analyzed within a Bayesian framework. Our experimental design consisted of forested control sites with no harvest, sites with relatively narrow (~13 m forested buffers on each side of the stream, and sites with wider (~30 m and more variable width unharvested buffer. Buffer treatments exhibited a 31-44% increase in mean species richness in the post-harvest years, a pattern most evident 10 years post-harvest. Post-harvest, species turnover was much higher on both treatments (63-74% relative to the controls (29%. We did not find evidence of local extinction for any species but found strong evidence (no overlap in 95% credible intervals for an increase in site occupancy on both Narrow (short-term: 7%; long-term 29% and Wide buffers (short-term: 21%; long-term 93% relative to controls after harvest. We did not find a treatment effect on total avian abundance. When assessing relationships between buffer width and site level abundance of four riparian specialists, we did not find strong evidence of reduced abundance in Narrow or Wide buffers. Silviculture regulations in this region dictate average buffer widths on small and large permanent streams that

  1. The effects of organic inputs to estuaries on overwintering bird populations and communities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study investigates the relationship between changes in organic inputs to river estuaries and other coastal intertidal areas, and changes in the populations of waterfowl in these habitats. This is done in the context of tidal barrage construction, where barrage construction and operation may coincide with the cleaning of estuarine water. A thorough review of the literature is undertaken to determine the current status of knowledge of bird/organic-enrichment interactions. The use of multivariate statistics for identifying gradients in similarity between bird communities (specifically waders) of different estuaries, irrespective of geographic locations is investigated. (UK)

  2. Heritable circadian period length in a wild bird population

    OpenAIRE

    Helm, Barbara; Visser, Marcel E

    2010-01-01

    Timing is essential, but circadian clocks, which play a crucial role in timekeeping, are almost unaddressed in evolutionary ecology. A key property of circadian clocks is their free-running period length (τ), i.e. the time taken for a full cycle under constant conditions. Under laboratory conditions, concordance of τ with the ambient light–dark cycle confers major fitness benefits, but little is known about period length and its implications in natural populations. We therefore studied natura...

  3. Environmental pollution affects genetic diversity in wild bird populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eeva, Tapio; Belskii, Eugen; Kuranov, Boris

    2006-09-19

    Many common environmental pollutants, together with nuclear radiation, are recognized as genotoxic. There is, however, very little information on pollution-related genetic effects on free-living animal populations, especially in terrestrial ecosystems. We investigated whether genetic diversity in two small insectivorous passerines, the great tit (Parus major) and the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca), was changed near point sources of heavy metals (two copper smelters) or radioactive isotopes (nuclear material reprocessing plant). We measured concentration of heavy metals and nucleotide diversity in mitochondrial DNA in feather samples taken from nestlings in multiple polluted areas and at control sites. In both species, heavy metal concentrations - especially of arsenic - were increased in feathers collected at smelter sites. The P. major population living near a smelter showed significantly higher nucleotide diversity than a control population in an unpolluted site, suggesting increased mutation rates in a polluted environment. On the contrary, F. hypoleuca showed reduced nucleotide diversity at both smelter sites but increased nucleotide diversity near the source of radioactivity. Our results show that heavy metal pollution and low level nuclear radiation affect the nucleotide diversity in two free-living insectivorous passerines. We suggest that the different response in these two species may be due to their different ability to handle toxic compounds in the body. PMID:16807076

  4. Which forest bird species are the main hosts of the tick, Ixodes ricinus, the vector of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, during the breeding season?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsot, M; Henry, P-Y; Vourc'h, G; Gasqui, P; Ferquel, E; Laignel, J; Grysan, M; Chapuis, J-L

    2012-07-01

    Wild birds are important hosts for vector-borne pathogens, especially those borne by ticks. However, few studies have been conducted on the role of different bird species within a community as hosts of vector-borne pathogens. This study addressed individual and species factors that could explain the burden of Ixodes ricinus on forest birds during the reproductive periods of both vectors and hosts. The goal was to identify which bird species contribute the most to the tick population at the community level. Birds were mist-netted on four plots in 2008 and on seven plots in 2009 in two forests (Sénart and Notre Dame, near Paris, France). The dependence of the tick load per bird upon environmental conditions (questing nymph density, year and plot) and on host species traits (species, age, sex, body size, vertical space use, level of innate and acquired immunity) was analysed. Finally, the relative contribution of each bird species to the local dynamics of ticks was estimated, while accounting for their respective abundance. Tick burden differed markedly between bird species and varied according to questing nymph density. Bird species with a high body mass, those that forage low in the vegetation, and those that had a high innate immune response and a high spleen mass were more likely to have a high tick burden. Four species (the Common Blackbird, Turdus merula, the European Robin, Erithacus rubecula, the Song Thrush, Turdus philomelos, and the Winter Wren, Troglodytes troglodytes) hosted more than 90% of the ticks in the local bird community. These species, and particularly T. merula which was host to a high proportion of the nymphs, are likely to contribute significantly to the circulation of pathogens for which they are competent, such as the agent of Lyme borreliosis.

  5. The dynamics, transmission, and population impacts of avian malaria in native hawaiian birds: A modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuel, M.D.; Hobbelen, P.H.F.; Decastro, F.; Ahumada, J.A.; Lapointe, D.A.; Atkinson, C.T.; Woodworth, B.L.; Hart, P.J.; Duffy, D.C.

    2011-01-01

    We developed an epidemiological model of avian malaria (Plasmodium relictum) across an altitudinal gradient on the island of Hawaii that includes the dynamics of the host, vector, and parasite. This introduced mosquito-borne disease is hypothesized to have contributed to extinctions and major shifts in the altitudinal distribution of highly susceptible native forest birds. Our goal was to better understand how biotic and abiotic factors influence the intensity of malaria transmission and impact on susceptible populations of native Hawaiian forest birds. Our model illustrates key patterns in the malaria-forest bird system: high malaria transmission in low-elevation forests with minor seasonal or annual variation in infection;episodic transmission in mid-elevation forests with site-to-site, seasonal, and annual variation depending on mosquito dynamics;and disease refugia in high-elevation forests with only slight risk of infection during summer. These infection patterns are driven by temperature and rainfall effects on parasite incubation period and mosquito dynamics across an elevational gradient and the availability of larval habitat, especially in mid-elevation forests. The results from our model suggest that disease is likely a key factor in causing population decline or restricting the distribution of many susceptible Hawaiian species and preventing the recovery of other vulnerable species. The model also provides a framework for the evaluation of factors influencing disease transmission and alternative disease control programs, and to evaluate the impact of climate change on disease cycles and bird populations. ??2011 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Preliminary investigation on reliability of genomic estimated breeding values in the Danish and Swedish Holstein Population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Su, G; Guldbrandtsen, B; Gregersen, V R;

    2010-01-01

    Abstract This study investigated the reliability of genomic estimated breeding values (GEBV) in the Danish Holstein population. The data in the analysis included 3,330 bulls with both published conventional EBV and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers. After data editing, 38,134 SNP markers...... or no effects, and a single prior distribution common for all SNP. It was found that, in general, the model with a common prior distribution of scaling factors had better predictive ability than any mixture prior models. Therefore, a common prior model was used to estimate SNP effects and breeding values...

  7. Analysis of genetic distribution and population genetic structure of the MyoD gene in 10 pig breeds

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li ZHU; Xuewei LI; Surong SHUAI; Mingzhou LI; Fangqiong LI; Lei CHEN

    2008-01-01

    Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) data was applied to analyze the distribution of the MyoD gene in 10 pig breeds and pig breed crosses.The population genetic information about genetic distribution,variation,and heterozygosity of the MyoD gene in different breed populations were analyzed.Based on the allele frequency,genetic distance and evolution distance among each breed populations were calculated and Unweighted Pair Group Method with Arithmetic mean (UPGMA) phylogenetic tree was gained based on the evolution distances between populations.The results indicated that the distribution of the MyoD genotype kept in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium in most tested groups but not in Duroc (D) and Duroc × (Landrance × Yorkshire)(DLY) population.Generally,the genetic diversity of the MyoD gene was abundant and these tested breed populations had high genetic variations.The evolution of the MyoD gene was under natural selection pressure.On the phylogenetic tree,10 pig breeds were divided into 4 clusters.The first cluster consisted of four breeds developed from Landrace.The second cluster was two indigenous Chinese pig breeds.The third cluster was three breeds developed from Duroc.The fourth cluster was a Tibetan pig breed.The constitution of the topology of the phylogenetic tree was consistent with the breeding history of each pig breed.From this experiment,we can conclude that some RFLP data obtained from functional gene can be used in the genetic deviation research between some closely related species or between different populations in certain species.

  8. Report to the Pacific Flyway Study Committee on breeding pair survey for Dusky Canada geese on the Copper River Delta

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Two population indices were developed for this report: 1 a population index based on the total number of birds seen on each transect and 2 a breeding pair index...

  9. The impact of climate change on birds: a review

    OpenAIRE

    Weiwei Wu; Haigen Xu; Jun Wu; Mingchang Cao

    2012-01-01

    The impact of climate change on biodiversity has become a hot issue. This paper reviews the effects of climate change on avian distribution, phenology and population dynamics according to the results of the latest research. Due to climate change, bird distributions have shifted towards high-latitude and high-altitude areas, which is changing more quickly than before. However, the breeding area which bird lived was changed different from the non-breedings. In addition, the ranges of many speci...

  10. Crop Breeding for Low Input Agriculture: A Sustainable Response to Feed a Growing World Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vagner A. Benedito

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available World population is projected to reach its maximum (~10 billion people by the year 2050. This 45% increase of the current world population (approaching seven billion people will boost the demand for food and raw materials. However, we live in a historical moment when supply of phosphate, water, and oil are at their peaks. Modern agriculture is fundamentally based on varieties bred for high performance under high input systems (fertilizers, water, oil, pesticides, which generally do not perform well under low-input situations. We propose a shift of research goals and plant breeding objectives from high-performance agriculture at high-energy input to those with an improved rationalization between yield and energy input. Crop breeding programs that are more focused on nutrient economy and local environmental fitness will help reduce energy demands for crop production while still providing adequate amounts of high quality food as global resources decline and population is projected to increase.

  11. The early bird gets the shrimp: Confronting assumptions of isotopic equilibrium and homogeneity in a wild bird population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wunder, Michael B.; Jehl, Joseph R.; Stricker, Craig A.

    2012-01-01

    1. Because stable isotope distributions in organic material vary systematically across energy gradients that exist in ecosystems, community and population structures, and in individual physiological systems, isotope values in animal tissues have helped address a broad range of questions in animal ecology. It follows that every tissue sample provides an isotopic profile that can be used to study dietary or movement histories of individual animals. Interpretations of these profiles depend on the assumption that metabolic pools are isotopically well mixed and in equilibrium with dietary resources prior to tissue synthesis, and they extend to the population level by assuming isotope profiles are identically distributed for animals using the same proximal dietary resource. As these assumptions are never fully met, studying structure in the variance of tissue isotope values from wild populations is informative. 2. We studied variation in δ13C, δ15N, δ2H and δ18O data for feathers from a population of eared grebes (Podiceps nigricollis) that migrate to Great Salt Lake each fall to moult feathers. During this time, they cannot fly and feed almost exclusively on superabundant brine shrimp (Artemia franciscana). The ecological simplicity of this situation minimized the usual spatial and trophic complexities often present in natural studies of feather isotope values. 3. Ranges and variances of isotope values for the feathers were larger than those from previously published studies that report feather isotopic variance, but they were bimodally distributed in all isotope dimensions. Isotope values for proximal dietary resources and local surface water show that some of the feathers we assumed to have been grown locally must have been grown before birds reached isotopic equilibrium with local diet or immediately prior to arrival at Great Salt Lake. 4. Our study provides novel insights about resource use strategies in eared grebes during migration. More generally, it

  12. HUMIDIFICATION AS A FACTOR OF STRUCTURIAL ORGANIZATION OF BIRD POPULATIONS IN THE WOOD STANDS OF THE BIOSPHERE RESERVE ASKANIA NOVA

    OpenAIRE

    Listopadsky M. A.

    2014-01-01

    The influence of different humidification types towards appearance of forest vegetation conditions on spatial organization of birds in the wood stands is analyzed. Population density, coefficient of occurrence, and informative connection with six types of soil humidification are given for 53 bird species. The informative estimation of every humidification type is determined for every bird species. Thereby it is definitely a contribution of every gradation of edaphic factor to the structural g...

  13. Strategies for imputation to whole genome sequence using a single or multi-breed reference population in cattle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brøndum, Rasmus Froberg; Guldbrandtsen, Bernt; Sahana, Goutam;

    2014-01-01

    individual). Conclusion Combining reference populations across breeds is a good option to increase the size of the reference data and in turn the accuracy of imputation when only few animals are available. Pre-phasing the reference data only slightly decreases the accuracy but gives substantial improvements...... autosome 29 using 387,436 bi-allelic variants and 13,612 SNP markers from the bovine HD panel. Results A combined breed reference population led to higher imputation accuracies than did a single breed reference. The highest accuracy of imputation for all three test breeds was achieved when using BEAGLE...

  14. Collision mortality has no discernible effect on population trends of North American birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd W Arnold

    Full Text Available Avian biodiversity is threatened by numerous anthropogenic factors and migratory species are especially at risk. Migrating birds frequently collide with manmade structures and such losses are believed to represent the majority of anthropogenic mortality for North American birds. However, estimates of total collision mortality range across several orders of magnitude and effects on population dynamics remain unknown. Herein, we develop a novel method to assess relative vulnerability to anthropogenic threats, which we demonstrate using 243,103 collision records from 188 species of eastern North American landbirds. After correcting mortality estimates for variation attributable to population size and geographic overlap with potential collision structures, we found that per capita vulnerability to collision with buildings and towers varied over more than four orders of magnitude among species. Species that migrate long distances or at night were much more likely to be killed by collisions than year-round residents or diurnal migrants. However, there was no correlation between relative collision mortality and long-term population trends for these same species. Thus, although millions of North American birds are killed annually by collisions with manmade structures, this source of mortality has no discernible effect on populations.

  15. POPULATION ANALYSIS OF THE LOCAL ENDANGERED PŘEŠTICE BLACK-PIED PIG BREED

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emil Krupa

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The pedigree analysis of the local endangered Přeštice Black-Pied pig breed (n=19 289 was performed. Animals born within the period 2012-2014 were assumed as the reference population (n=1 374. The pedigree completeness index reached 100% for four generations back. The 100 % of the genetic pool was explained by 66 ancestors. Although all animals of the reference population were inbred, 57% of them had inbreeding less than five percent. Average inbreeding, co-ancestry coefficient and rate of inbreeding reached 4.93%, 13.48% and 1.29% in reference population, respectively. The effective population size calculated by four different methods varied from 32 to 91 animals in 2014. Average generation interval, average family size for sire and dam parents was 2.5, 17.46 and 6.5 animals, respectively. Total number of founders, effective number of founders, effective number of founders’ genomes and effective number of non-founders genomes reached values 299, 98.05, 21.92 and 28.23 founders, respectively. The average genetic diversity (GD loss was 13.71% in reference population. The GD loss has increased within the last three year period mainly due to the random genetic drift (77.6% and by unequal contribution of founders (22.4%. The Preštice Black-Pied breed is highly endangered with GD loss. Mating of closely related animals has to be prevented in breeding and mating program of this breed.

  16. Surveys of forest bird populations found in the vicinity of proposed geothermal project subzones in the district of Puna, Hawaii

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jacobi, J.D.; Reynolds, M.; Ritchotte, G.; Nielsen, B.; Viggiano, A.; Dwyer, J.

    1994-10-01

    This report presents data on the distribution and status of forest bird species found within the vicinity of proposed geothermal resource development on the Island of Hawaii. Potential impacts of the proposed development on the native bird populations found in the project are are addressed.

  17. An Integrated Population Model From Constant Effort Bird-Ringing Data

    OpenAIRE

    Cave, Vanessa M.; King, Ruth; Freeman, Stephen N.

    2010-01-01

    Data from annual bird-ringing programs, in which catch effort is standardized, are routinely used to index abundance, productivity, and adult survival. Efficient models have been developed for each. Such monitoring schemes, based on ringing across a number of sites, are perhaps unique in providing this combination of demographic information and make the data particularly amenable to an integrated approach to population modeling. We develop a Bayesian approach and a deterministi...

  18. Are differences in breeding mechanisms and fertility among populations contributing to rarity in Grevillea rhizomatosa (Proteaceae)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, C L; Caddy, H A R

    2006-12-01

    Plant breeding systems are seldom studied across the breadth of a species' range. For many systems, this precludes an informed assessment of the evolutionary biology of a species, particularly of the factors that shape fecundity. Grevillea rhizomatosa is a threatened species of shrub known only from a 7 × 8 km area and c. 2000 plants in northern New South Wales, Australia. The species reproduces asexually from rhizomatous suckers, and fruit are only produced in a few populations. Over two flowering seasons, we investigated the extent of sexual reproduction and the mechanisms of infertility in five populations that span the range of the species. Seed were produced in three of the five populations. The breeding system varied among populations from obligate outcrossing to facultative outcrossing to fully sterile. Fruit to flower ratios were below 0.13 in the fertile populations but within the range found in other species of Grevillea. Pollinator limitation was not linked to infertility. Stigmatic opening and receptivity were functional in all populations. Interpopulation crosses using fertile pollen failed to recover fertility in an infertile population. A breakdown in female and male fertility mechanisms was found including a fault in the mechanical release of pollen from anthers, wild-fires. PMID:21642125

  19. Survival of Coelaenomenodera lameensis (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) in Relation to the Physical Characteristics of Different Oil Palm (Elaeis sp.) Breeding Populations

    OpenAIRE

    Beaudoin-Ollivier, L.; Flori, A.; Coffi, A.; Cros, D.; Glitho, I.; Nodichao, L.

    2015-01-01

    The edibility of different Elaeis sp. breeding populations present in Benin was tested for the leaf miner Coelaenomenodera lameensis Berti (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), a major oil palm pest in Africa. Experiments carried out in sleeves revealed the oviposition capacities of females and the mortality rates for the different developmental stages by comparing the populations found on two breeding populations of Elaeis oleifera (HBK) Cortes, four of Elaeis guineensis Jacquin and four (E. guineens...

  20. Prediction of rates of inbreeding in populations selected on best linear unbiased prediction of breeding value.

    OpenAIRE

    Bijma, P.; Woolliams, John

    2000-01-01

    Predictions for the rate of inbreeding (DeltaF) in populations with discrete generations undergoing selection on best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) of breeding value were developed. Predictions were based on the concept of long-term genetic contributions using a recently established relationship between expected contributions and rates of inbreeding and a known procedure for predicting expected contributions. Expected contributions of individuals were predicted using a linear model, u(i)(...

  1. Model to track wild birds for avian influenza by means of population dynamics and surveillance information.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Alba

    Full Text Available Design, sampling and data interpretation constitute an important challenge for wildlife surveillance of avian influenza viruses (AIV. The aim of this study was to construct a model to improve and enhance identification in both different periods and locations of avian species likely at high risk of contact with AIV in a specific wetland. This study presents an individual-based stochastic model for the Ebre Delta as an example of this appliance. Based on the Monte-Carlo method, the model simulates the dynamics of the spread of AIV among wild birds in a natural park following introduction of an infected bird. Data on wild bird species population, apparent AIV prevalence recorded in wild birds during the period of study, and ecological information on factors such as behaviour, contact rates or patterns of movements of waterfowl were incorporated as inputs of the model. From these inputs, the model predicted those species that would introduce most of AIV in different periods and those species and areas that would be at high risk as a consequence of the spread of these AIV incursions. This method can serve as a complementary tool to previous studies to optimize the allocation of the limited AI surveillance resources in a local complex ecosystem. However, this study indicates that in order to predict the evolution of the spread of AIV at the local scale, there is a need for further research on the identification of host factors involved in the interspecies transmission of AIV.

  2. Current status, surveillance and control of avian influenza in domestic and wild bird populations in Bulgaria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report describes the history and current status of avian influenza (AI) infection and control in Bulgaria. The country has a unique geographic position in Europe with regard to wild bird populations and their migration routes which pass through its territory. In recent years, Bulgaria did not remain free from AI. The region with the highest rate of isolation of H5N1 virus strains were the Black Sea coast and wet territories connected with the Via Pontica migration pathway in the administrative districts of Dobrich, Varna and Bourgas. Low pathogenic (LP) AI strains isolated from ducks were subtypes H3, H4 and H6 from the areas of Plovdiv, Pazardjik, St. Zagora, Yambol, Sliven and Haskovo. Raising ducks for liver production is a popular practice in south and southeast Bulgaria. From an epidemiological standpoint, controlling circulation of AI viruses among duck flocks, especially before their gathering in larger farms for fattening is a mandatory requirement of official authorities. To prevent the spread of highly pathogenic (HP) AI, surveillance of domestic poultry as well as wild birds should be strengthened in countries at risk, especially along bird migration routes. Monitoring, sampling and analysis of the viral subtypes of AI found in wild birds needs to be carried out to fully understand their role in the propagation and spread of HPAI viruses. (author)

  3. Model to Track Wild Birds for Avian Influenza by Means of Population Dynamics and Surveillance Information

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alba, Anna; Bicout, Dominique J.; Vidal, Francesc; Curcó, Antoni; Allepuz, Alberto; Napp, Sebastián; García-Bocanegra, Ignacio; Costa, Taiana; Casal, Jordi

    2012-01-01

    Design, sampling and data interpretation constitute an important challenge for wildlife surveillance of avian influenza viruses (AIV). The aim of this study was to construct a model to improve and enhance identification in both different periods and locations of avian species likely at high risk of contact with AIV in a specific wetland. This study presents an individual-based stochastic model for the Ebre Delta as an example of this appliance. Based on the Monte-Carlo method, the model simulates the dynamics of the spread of AIV among wild birds in a natural park following introduction of an infected bird. Data on wild bird species population, apparent AIV prevalence recorded in wild birds during the period of study, and ecological information on factors such as behaviour, contact rates or patterns of movements of waterfowl were incorporated as inputs of the model. From these inputs, the model predicted those species that would introduce most of AIV in different periods and those species and areas that would be at high risk as a consequence of the spread of these AIV incursions. This method can serve as a complementary tool to previous studies to optimize the allocation of the limited AI surveillance resources in a local complex ecosystem. However, this study indicates that in order to predict the evolution of the spread of AIV at the local scale, there is a need for further research on the identification of host factors involved in the interspecies transmission of AIV. PMID:22952962

  4. Density-mediated carry-over effects explain variation in breeding output across time in a seasonal population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Betini, Gustavo S; Griswold, Cortland K; Norris, D Ryan

    2013-10-23

    In seasonal environments, where density dependence can operate throughout the annual cycle, vital rates are typically considered to be a function of the number of individuals at the beginning of each season. However, variation in density in the previous season could also cause surviving individuals to be in poor physiological condition, which could carry over to influence individual success in the following season. We examine this hypothesis using replicated populations of Drosophila melanogaster, the common fruitfly, over 23 non-overlapping generations with distinct breeding and non-breeding seasons. We found that the density at the beginning of the non-breeding season negatively affected the fresh weight of individuals that survived the non-breeding season and resulted in a 25% decrease in per capita breeding output among those that survived to the next season to breed. At the population level, per capita breeding output was best explained by a model that incorporated density at the beginning of the previous non-breeding season (carry-over effect, COE) and density at the beginning of the breeding season. Our results support the idea that density-mediated COEs are critical for understanding population dynamics in seasonal environments.

  5. An avifaunal survey of the Istranca mountains, turkish thrace: novel breeding bird records including the first breeding record of Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix in Turkey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Özkan, Korhan

    2011-01-01

    breeding evidence for Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, European Shag P. aristotelis, Pygmy Cormorant P. pygmeus, Garganey Anas querquedula, Common Redshank Tringa totanus, Alpine Swift Apus melba, Eurasian Wryneck Jynx torquilla, Red-rumped Swallow Cecropis daurica, White-throated Dipper Cinclus...

  6. Population structure of humpback whales from their breeding grounds in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Howard C Rosenbaum

    Full Text Available Although humpback whales are among the best-studied of the large whales, population boundaries in the Southern Hemisphere (SH have remained largely untested. We assess population structure of SH humpback whales using 1,527 samples collected from whales at fourteen sampling sites within the Southwestern and Southeastern Atlantic, the Southwestern Indian Ocean, and Northern Indian Ocean (Breeding Stocks A, B, C and X, respectively. Evaluation of mtDNA population structure and migration rates was carried out under different statistical frameworks. Using all genetic evidence, the results suggest significant degrees of population structure between all ocean basins, with the Southwestern and Northern Indian Ocean most differentiated from each other. Effective migration rates were highest between the Southeastern Atlantic and the Southwestern Indian Ocean, followed by rates within the Southeastern Atlantic, and the lowest between the Southwestern and Northern Indian Ocean. At finer scales, very low gene flow was detected between the two neighbouring sub-regions in the Southeastern Atlantic, compared to high gene flow for whales within the Southwestern Indian Ocean. Our genetic results support the current management designations proposed by the International Whaling Commission of Breeding Stocks A, B, C, and X as four strongly structured populations. The population structure patterns found in this study are likely to have been influenced by a combination of long-term maternally directed fidelity of migratory destinations, along with other ecological and oceanographic features in the region.

  7. Accuracy of Genomic Selection in a Rice Synthetic Population Developed for Recurrent Selection Breeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grenier, Cécile; Cao, Tuong-Vi; Ospina, Yolima; Quintero, Constanza; Châtel, Marc Henri; Tohme, Joe; Courtois, Brigitte; Ahmadi, Nourollah

    2015-01-01

    Genomic selection (GS) is a promising strategy for enhancing genetic gain. We investigated the accuracy of genomic estimated breeding values (GEBV) in four inter-related synthetic populations that underwent several cycles of recurrent selection in an upland rice-breeding program. A total of 343 S2:4 lines extracted from those populations were phenotyped for flowering time, plant height, grain yield and panicle weight, and genotyped with an average density of one marker per 44.8 kb. The relative effect of the linkage disequilibrium (LD) and minor allele frequency (MAF) thresholds for selecting markers, the relative size of the training population (TP) and of the validation population (VP), the selected trait and the genomic prediction models (frequentist and Bayesian) on the accuracy of GEBVs was investigated in 540 cross validation experiments with 100 replicates. The effect of kinship between the training and validation populations was tested in an additional set of 840 cross validation experiments with a single genomic prediction model. LD was high (average r2 = 0.59 at 25 kb) and decreased slowly, distribution of allele frequencies at individual loci was markedly skewed toward unbalanced frequencies (MAF average value 15.2% and median 9.6%), and differentiation between the four synthetic populations was low (FST ≤0.06). The accuracy of GEBV across all cross validation experiments ranged from 0.12 to 0.54 with an average of 0.30. Significant differences in accuracy were observed among the different levels of each factor investigated. Phenotypic traits had the biggest effect, and the size of the incidence matrix had the smallest. Significant first degree interaction was observed for GEBV accuracy between traits and all the other factors studied, and between prediction models and LD, MAF and composition of the TP. The potential of GS to accelerate genetic gain and breeding options to increase the accuracy of predictions are discussed. PMID:26313446

  8. Accuracy of Genomic Selection in a Rice Synthetic Population Developed for Recurrent Selection Breeding.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cécile Grenier

    Full Text Available Genomic selection (GS is a promising strategy for enhancing genetic gain. We investigated the accuracy of genomic estimated breeding values (GEBV in four inter-related synthetic populations that underwent several cycles of recurrent selection in an upland rice-breeding program. A total of 343 S2:4 lines extracted from those populations were phenotyped for flowering time, plant height, grain yield and panicle weight, and genotyped with an average density of one marker per 44.8 kb. The relative effect of the linkage disequilibrium (LD and minor allele frequency (MAF thresholds for selecting markers, the relative size of the training population (TP and of the validation population (VP, the selected trait and the genomic prediction models (frequentist and Bayesian on the accuracy of GEBVs was investigated in 540 cross validation experiments with 100 replicates. The effect of kinship between the training and validation populations was tested in an additional set of 840 cross validation experiments with a single genomic prediction model. LD was high (average r2 = 0.59 at 25 kb and decreased slowly, distribution of allele frequencies at individual loci was markedly skewed toward unbalanced frequencies (MAF average value 15.2% and median 9.6%, and differentiation between the four synthetic populations was low (FST ≤0.06. The accuracy of GEBV across all cross validation experiments ranged from 0.12 to 0.54 with an average of 0.30. Significant differences in accuracy were observed among the different levels of each factor investigated. Phenotypic traits had the biggest effect, and the size of the incidence matrix had the smallest. Significant first degree interaction was observed for GEBV accuracy between traits and all the other factors studied, and between prediction models and LD, MAF and composition of the TP. The potential of GS to accelerate genetic gain and breeding options to increase the accuracy of predictions are discussed.

  9. First evidence and predictions of Plasmodium transmission in Alaskan bird populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Loiseau

    Full Text Available The unprecedented rate of change in the Arctic climate is expected to have major impacts on the emergence of infectious diseases and host susceptibility to these diseases. It is predicted that malaria parasites will spread to both higher altitudes and latitudes with global warming. Here we show for the first time that avian Plasmodium transmission occurs in the North American Arctic. Over a latitudinal gradient in Alaska, from 61°N to 67°N, we collected blood samples of resident and migratory bird species. We found both residents and hatch year birds infected with Plasmodium as far north as 64°N, providing clear evidence that malaria transmission occurs in these climates. Based on our empirical data, we make the first projections of the habitat suitability for Plasmodium under a future-warming scenario in Alaska. These findings raise new concerns about the spread of malaria to naïve host populations.

  10. 内蒙古中部地区繁殖鸟类多样性调查%Diversity of Breeding Birds in Middle Inner Mongolia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李敏; 陈文婧; 魏炜; 王晨; 杨贵生

    2012-01-01

    Breeding bird diversity were surveyed by line transect and fixed-radius point count methods in 3 habitat,arid grassland,typical grassland and wetland in Middle Inner Mongolia from May to June 2011. A total of 63 breeding species belonging to 25 families and 17 orders were recorded. Among them 12 were resident birds and 51 were summer visitors. Considering the avifauna,54 species (85. 71% ) belong to Palearctic Realm and 9 (14. 39% ) are Oriental Realm. The bird diversity from the most to least richness in the 3 habitat surveyed by Shannon-Wiener index is wetland,arid grassland,and typical grassland. The value of evenness index was highest in arid grassland and lowest in typical grassland.%2011年5~6月,采用样线法和固定半径样点法对内蒙古中部地区荒漠草原、典型草原及湿地3种生境中的鸟类进行了调查,共记录到繁殖鸟63种,隶属于11目25科,其中留鸟12种,夏候鸟51种.在动物地理区系成分上,古北界鸟类54种(占85.71%);东洋界鸟类9种(占14.29%).调查结果表明,3种生境的鸟类群落结构在多样性指数上以湿地为最高,其次为荒漠草原,典型草原最低;均匀度指数最高的为荒漠草原,其次为湿地,典型草原最低.

  11. A Breeding Bird Survey of the Nulhegan Basin Division of the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — In 2000, the author used point counts, area searches, and callback surveys to investigate the use ofrepresentative natural communities (RNC) by breeding landbirds...

  12. Short- and long-term implications of clearcut and two-age silviculture for conservation of breeding forest birds in the central Appalachians, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, M.E.; Wood, P.B.

    2009-01-01

    Two-age (deferment or leave tree) harvesting is used increasingly in even-aged forest management, but long-term responses of breeding avifauna to retention of residual canopy trees have not been investigated. Breeding bird surveys completed in 1994-1996 in two-age and clearcut harvests in the central Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia, USA allowed us to document long-term changes in these stands. In 2005 and 2006, we conducted point counts in mature unharvested forest stands and in 19-26 year-old clearcut and two-age harvests from the original study and in younger clearcut and two-age stands (6-10 years old). We found differences in breeding bird metrics among these five treatments and temporal differences in the original stands. Although early-successional species are typically absent from group selection cuts, they were almost as common in young two-age stands as clearcuts, supporting two-age harvests as an alternative to clearcutting. Although older harvests had lower species richness and diversity, they were beginning to provide habitat for some species of late-successional forest songbirds that were absent or uncommon in young harvests. Overall, late-successional forest-interior species were more flexible in their use of different seral stages; several species used both age classes and harvest types in addition to mature forest, which may reflect the lack of edges in our heavily-forested landscape. Consequently, two-age management provides habitat for a diverse group of species as these stands mature and may be an ecologically sustainable alternative to clearcutting in landscapes where brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater) are uncommon. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Report to Pacific Flyway Study Committee on 1986-1991 breeding ground surveys of dusky Canada geese on the Copper River Delta

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Two population indices were developed for this report: 1 a population index based on the total number of birds seen on each transect and 2 a breeding pair index...

  14. Forms of density regulation and (quasi-) stationary distributions of population sizes in birds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sæther, Bernt-Erik; Engen, Steinar; Grøtan, Vidar;

    2008-01-01

    The theta-logistic model of density regulation is an especially flexible class of density regulation models where different forms of non-linear density regulation can be expressed by only one parameter, u. Estimating the parameters of the thetalogistic model is, however, challenging. This is mainly...... due to the need for information concerning population growth at low densities as well as data on fluctuations around the carrying capacity K in order to estimate the strength of density regulation. Here we estimate parameters of the theta-logistic model for 28 populations of three species of birds...... that have grown from very small population sizes followed by a period of fluctuations around K. We then use these parameters to estimate the quasi-stationary distribution of population size. There were often large uncertainties in these parameters specifying the form of density regulation that were...

  15. The annual number of breeding adults and the effective population size of syntopic newts (Triturus cristatus, T-marmoratus)

    OpenAIRE

    Jehle, R; Arntzen, W.; Burke, T.; Krupa, A.P.; Hodl, W.

    2001-01-01

    Pond-breeding amphibians are deme-structured organisms with a population genetic structure particularly susceptible to demographic threats. We estimated the effective number of breeding adults (N-b) and the effective population size (N-e) of the European urodele amphibians Triturus cristatus (the crested newt) and T. marmoratus (the marbled newt), using temporal shifts in microsatellite allele frequencies. Eight microsatellite loci isolated from a T. cristatus library were used, five of which...

  16. Interaction of breeds, years, age of bird and pen effects on hen day lay of three layer breeds and their adaptation in the derived Southern Guinea Savannah of Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terzungwe Ahemen

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Egg production of Haco black, Shaver’s brown, Lohman brown and Olympia black werecollected from production records at Big Bam commercial farm Makurdi from 1997 to 2004. The meanhen day lay of the breeds were estimated in percentages at 49-52, 56-60 and 69-73 weeks. The meanhen day lay of effects of breed by year and breed by pen by age of bird interactions were estimated.The hen day lay of Haco black by year interaction were low varied significantly (P1,L2, and L3, were significantly lower than that at 49-56 weeks. The mean hen day lay due to effects ofinteraction of Shavers brown at 56-60 and 69-73 weeks by pen L1, L2, and L3, were significantly higherthan that at 49-56 weeks. The mean hen day lay of interaction of Lohman brown and Olympia black at69-73 weeks by Pen L1, L2, and L3, were significantly higher than that at 56-60 weeks. This resultindicated that the response to the restrictions of the years and their effects on the strategies of aging ofthe breeds on their hen lay varied across the genetic groups. Haco black was more susceptible to thisstress especially at the advanced age. Lohman brown and Olympia black were better than Haco black.Shaver’s brown was superior in this trait as neither the restrictions of the years nor the strategies ofaging affected its hen day lay. In order of fitness, Shavers brown, Lohman brown and Olympia blackwere most adapted to this region. Thus, Shavers brown which is better adapted to the prevailingenvironmental conditions in the Southern Guinea Savannah is recommended for poultry farmers in thislocality.

  17. Dynamics of low and high pathogenic avian influenza in wild and domestic bird populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuncer, Necibe; Torres, Juan; Martcheva, Maia; Barfield, Michael; Holt, Robert D

    2016-01-01

    This paper introduces a time-since-recovery structured, multi-strain, multi-population model of avian influenza. Influenza A viruses infect many species of wild and domestic birds and are classified into two groups based on their ability to cause disease: low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) and high pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). Prior infection with LPAI provides partial immunity towards HPAI. The model introduced in this paper structures LPAI-recovered birds (wild and domestic) with time-since-recovery and includes cross-immunity towards HPAI that can fade with time. The model has a unique disease-free equilibrium (DFE), unique LPAI-only and HPAI-only equilibria and at least one coexistence equilibrium. We compute the reproduction numbers of LPAI ([Formula: see text]) and HPAI ([Formula: see text]) and show that the DFE is locally asymptotically stable when [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text]. A unique LPAI-only (HPAI-only) equilibrium exists when [Formula: see text] ([Formula: see text]) and it is locally asymptotically stable if HPAI (LPAI) cannot invade the equilibrium, that is, if the invasion number [Formula: see text] ([Formula: see text]). We show using numerical simulations that the ODE version of the model, which is obtained by discarding the time-since-recovery structures (making cross-immunity constant), can exhibit oscillations, and also that the pathogens LPAI and HPAI can coexist with sustained oscillations in both populations. Through simulations, we show that even if both populations (wild and domestic) are sinks when alone, LPAI and HPAI can persist in both populations combined. Thus, reducing the reproduction numbers of LPAI and HPAI in each population to below unity is not enough to eradicate the disease. The pathogens can continue to coexist in both populations unless transmission between the populations is reduced. PMID:26667351

  18. Z chromosome divergence, polymorphism and relative effective population size in a genus of lekking birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Cornman, Robert S.; Kenneth L. Jones,; Fike, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    Sex chromosomes contribute disproportionately to species boundaries as they diverge faster than autosomes and often have reduced diversity. Their hemizygous nature contributes to faster divergence and reduced diversity, as do some types of selection. In birds, other factors (mating system and bottlenecks) can further decrease the effective population size of Z-linked loci and accelerate divergence (Fast-Z). We assessed Z-linked divergence and effective population sizes for two polygynous sage-grouse species and compared them to estimates from birds with various mating systems. We found lower diversity and higher FST for Z-linked loci than for autosomes, as expected. The πZ/πA ratio was 0.38 in Centrocercus minimus, 0.48 in Centrocercus urophasianus and 0.59 in a diverged, parapatric population of C. urophasianus, a broad range given the mating system among these groups is presumably equivalent. The full data set had unequal males and females across groups, so we compared an equally balanced reduced set of C. minimus and individuals pooled from both C. urophasianus subgroups recovering similar estimates: 0.54 for C. urophasianus and 0.38 for C. minimus. We provide further evidence that NeZ/NeA in birds is often lower than expected under random mating or monogamy. The lower ratio in C. minimus could be a consequence of stronger selection or drift acting on Z loci during speciation, as this species differs strongly from C. urophasianus in sexually selected characters with minimal mitochondrial divergence. As C. minimus also exhibited lower genomic diversity, it is possible that a more severe demographic history may contribute to its lower ratio.

  19. Influence of life history strategies on sensitivity, population growth and response to climate for sympatric alpine birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilson Scott

    2012-06-01

    . Juvenile survival was a highly influential rate for both species, but the period from independence to first breeding is a poorly understood stage for many bird species. Additional study on juvenile survival, the influence of density dependence and the effects of predators as the mechanism driving survival-reproduction tradeoffs are all areas requiring further study.

  20. Microsatellite based genetic structure of regional transboundary Istrian sheep breed populations in Croatia and Slovenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Gutierrez-Gil

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Istrian dairy sheep is a local breed essential for the identity and development of the Northern- Adriatic karstic region through high-quality products, primarily the hard sheep artisanal cheese. Border changes fragmented the initial Istrian dairy sheep population in three genetically isolated sub-populations in Italy (1000 animals, Slovenia (1150 animals and Croatia (2500 animals. Due to the drastic reduction of their population sizes and fragmentation, the populations in Croatia and Slovenia are included in governmentally supported conservation programs. The initial subpopulation in Italy was restored after near extinction with stock from Slovenia, and is used today in meat production. The aim of this study was to provide an initial understanding of the current genetic structure and distribution of the genetic variability that exists in Istrian sheep by analysing individuals sampled in two regional groups of Istrian sheep from Croatia and Slovenia. Cres island sheep and Lika pramenka sheep were used as out-groups for comparison. Genetic differentiation was analysed using factorial correspondence analysis and structure clustering over 26 microsatellite loci for a total of 104 sheep belonging to three breeds from Croatia and Slovenia. Factorial correspondence analysis and clustering-based structure analysis both showed three distinct populations: Lika pramenka sheep, Cres island sheep and Istrian sheep. We did not find a marked genetic divergence of the regional groups of Istrian sheep. Istrian sheep regional group from Slovenia showed lower genetic variability compared to the one from Croatia. Variability and structure information obtained in this study considered alongside with socio-cultural-contexts and economic goals for the Istrian sheep reared in Croatia and Slovenia indicate that the cross-border exchange of genetic material of animals carrying private alleles among populations would maintain these alleles at low frequencies and minimize

  1. Combining site occupancy, breeding population sizes and reproductive success to calculate time-averaged reproductive output of different habitat types: an application to Tricolored Blackbirds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcel Holyoak

    Full Text Available In metapopulations in which habitat patches vary in quality and occupancy it can be complicated to calculate the net time-averaged contribution to reproduction of particular populations. Surprisingly, few indices have been proposed for this purpose. We combined occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, and reproductive success to determine the net value of different sites through time and applied this method to a bird of conservation concern. The Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor has experienced large population declines, is the most colonial songbird in North America, is largely confined to California, and breeds itinerantly in multiple habitat types. It has had chronically low reproductive success in recent years. Although young produced per nest have previously been compared across habitats, no study has simultaneously considered site occupancy and reproductive success. Combining occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, reproductive success and nest failure rate we found that that large colonies in grain fields fail frequently because of nest destruction due to harvest prior to fledging. Consequently, net time-averaged reproductive output is low compared to colonies in non-native Himalayan blackberry or thistles, and native stinging nettles. Cattail marshes have intermediate reproductive output, but their reproductive output might be improved by active management. Harvest of grain-field colonies necessitates either promoting delay of harvest or creating alternative, more secure nesting habitats. Stinging nettle and marsh colonies offer the main potential sources for restoration or native habitat creation. From 2005-2011 breeding site occupancy declined 3x faster than new breeding colonies were formed, indicating a rapid decline in occupancy. Total abundance showed a similar decline. Causes of variation in the value for reproduction of nesting substrates and factors behind continuing population declines merit urgent

  2. Combining site occupancy, breeding population sizes and reproductive success to calculate time-averaged reproductive output of different habitat types: an application to Tricolored Blackbirds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holyoak, Marcel; Meese, Robert J; Graves, Emily E

    2014-01-01

    In metapopulations in which habitat patches vary in quality and occupancy it can be complicated to calculate the net time-averaged contribution to reproduction of particular populations. Surprisingly, few indices have been proposed for this purpose. We combined occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, and reproductive success to determine the net value of different sites through time and applied this method to a bird of conservation concern. The Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor) has experienced large population declines, is the most colonial songbird in North America, is largely confined to California, and breeds itinerantly in multiple habitat types. It has had chronically low reproductive success in recent years. Although young produced per nest have previously been compared across habitats, no study has simultaneously considered site occupancy and reproductive success. Combining occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, reproductive success and nest failure rate we found that that large colonies in grain fields fail frequently because of nest destruction due to harvest prior to fledging. Consequently, net time-averaged reproductive output is low compared to colonies in non-native Himalayan blackberry or thistles, and native stinging nettles. Cattail marshes have intermediate reproductive output, but their reproductive output might be improved by active management. Harvest of grain-field colonies necessitates either promoting delay of harvest or creating alternative, more secure nesting habitats. Stinging nettle and marsh colonies offer the main potential sources for restoration or native habitat creation. From 2005-2011 breeding site occupancy declined 3x faster than new breeding colonies were formed, indicating a rapid decline in occupancy. Total abundance showed a similar decline. Causes of variation in the value for reproduction of nesting substrates and factors behind continuing population declines merit urgent investigation. The method we

  3. Population dynamics of long-tailed ducks breeding on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schamber, Jason L.; Flint, Paul L.; Grand, J. Barry; Wilson, Heather M.; Morse, Julie A.

    2009-01-01

    Population estimates for long-tailed ducks in North America have declined by nearly 50% over the past 30 years. Life history and population dynamics of this species are difficult to ascertain, because the birds nest at low densities across a broad range of habitat types. Between 1991 and 2004, we collected information on productivity and survival of long-tailed ducks at three locations on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. Clutch size averaged 7.1 eggs, and nesting success averaged 30%. Duckling survival to 30 days old averaged 10% but was highly variable among years, ranging from 0% to 25%. Apparent annual survival of adult females based on mark-recapture of nesting females was estimated at 74%. We combined these estimates of survival and productivity into a matrix-based population model, which predicted an annual population decline of 19%. Elasticities indicated that population growth rate (λ) was most sensitive to changes in adult female survival. Further, the relatively high sensitivity of λ to duckling survival suggests that low duckling survival may be a bottleneck to productivity in some years. These data represent the first attempt to synthesize a population model for this species. Although our analyses were hampered by the small sample sizes inherent in studying a dispersed nesting species, our model provides a basis for management actions and can be enhanced as additional data become available.

  4. Current selection for lower migratory activity will drive the evolution of residency in a migratory bird population

    OpenAIRE

    F Pulido; Berthold, P

    2010-01-01

    Global warming is impacting biodiversity by altering the distribution, abundance, and phenology of a wide range of animal and plant species. One of the best documented responses to recent climate change is alterations in the migratory behavior of birds, but the mechanisms underlying these phenotypic adjustments are largely unknown. This knowledge is still crucial to predict whether populations of migratory birds will adapt to a rapid increase in temperature. We monitored migratory behavior in...

  5. Growth performance of the clam, Meretrix meretrix, breeding-selection populations cultured in different conditions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Chao; CHAI Xueliang; WANG Hongxia; TANG Baojun; LIU Baozhong

    2013-01-01

    A breeding-selection program for the clam, Meretrix meretrix, was conducted since 2004. Two of the selec-tion populations were generated with the shell color pattern as an additional selection criterion and named as SP (purple stripes) population and SB (black dots) population. The third-generation SP and SB popula-tions (08G3SP and 08G3SB, respectively) were cultured at two commercial clam farms and a nursery pond and their shell lengths were compared. 08G3SB clams had significantly larger sizes than 08G3SP clams at commercial clam farms (p<0.05), yet 08G3SB individuals were significantly smaller than 08G3SP individ-uals at the nursery pond (p <0.05). Then, we examined the growth of the fourth-generation SP and SB populations (10G4SP and 10G4SB, respectively) at a commercial farm, and found that the shell lengths of the 10G4SB clams increased at a significantly higher growth rate than the 10G4SP clams (p <0.05) from May to September, when the water temperature was between 24.2-27.5◦C, while 10G4SB lost the growth advantage in the other months. These results indicated that SP and SB populations responded differently to environmental factors, so it is beneficial for the clam farmers to select a suitable population according to the culture environment. Furthermore, a diallel mating of the SB and SP populations was designed to investigate whether their hybrid population would show heterosis. However, the heterosis was not shown in this study, which might result from the slight genetic divergence between SB and SP populations.

  6. Assessing regional populations of ground-nesting marine birds in the Canadian High Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Maftei

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Queens Channel region of Nunavut is an ecologically distinct area within the Canadian High Arctic consisting of an extensive archipelago of small, low-lying gravel islands throughout which form several localized but highly productive polynyas. We used aerial survey and colony-monitoring data to assess regional- and colony-level fluctuations in the number of birds in this region between 2002 and 2013. Regional and colony-specific monitoring suggested that common eider (Somateria mollissima numbers are increasing, while numbers of Arctic terns (Sterna paradisaea may be in decline. Based on these data, we suggest that even infrequent comprehensive surveys are more useful than annual monitoring at specific sites in generating an accurate assessment of ground-nesting seabird populations at the regional level, and that dramatic fluctuations at individual colonies probably belie the overall stability of regional populations.

  7. Influence of characteristics of irrigation channels on the breeding bird community of a wetland zone in southeast of Spain

    OpenAIRE

    López Pomares, Alejandro; López Iborra, Germán Manuel; Martín Cantarino, Carlos

    2009-01-01

    The “El Hondo Nature Park” is mainly composed of a series of irrigation channels and water reservoirs, subjected to various regimes of management as well as reed and vegetation control, thus creating a great variety of habitats and situations. To determine the influence of these habitats and management regimes on the local bird community, a set of characteristics of these channels and their surrounding area were analysed with a Correspondence Analysis (CA). The degree of reed development in c...

  8. Cecal populations of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria and Escherichia coli populations after in vivo Escherichia coli challenge in birds fed diets with purified lignin or mannanoligosaccharides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baurhoo, B; Letellier, A; Zhao, X; Ruiz-Feria, C A

    2007-12-01

    Two experiments were conducted to evaluate lignin and mannanoligosaccharides as alternatives to antibiotic growth promoters in broilers. Dietary treatments for the 2 studies were 1) negative control (CTL-, antibiotic free); 2) positive control (CTL+, diet 1 + 11 mg of virginiamycin/kg); 3) mannanoligosaccharide (MOS; diet 1 + BioMos: 0.2% to 21 d and 0.1% thereafter); 4) LL (diet 1 + 1.25% Alcell lignin); and 5) HL (diet 1 + 2.5% Alcell lignin). In experiment 1, each treatment was assigned to 4 pen replicates (52 birds each). Body weight and feed intake were recorded weekly for 38 d. At 28 and 38 d, cecal contents were assayed for lactobacilli and bifidobacteria. Body weight and feed intake did not differ among dietary treatments. At d 38, the lactobacilli population was greatest (P < 0.05) in birds fed MOS, whereas LL-fed birds had greater (P < 0.05) lactobacilli load than those fed CTL+. Bifidobacteria load was greater (P < 0.05) in birds fed MOS or LL compared with those fed CTL+ at both d 28 and 38. However, at d 28 and 38, lactobacilli and bifidobacteria loads were lowest (P < 0.05) in CTL+ or HL-fed birds. In experiment 2, 21-d-old birds from the initial flock were transferred to cages for oral Escherichia coli (O2 and O88 serotypes) challenge (12 birds/treatment). After 3, 6, and 9 d, cecal loads of E. coli were determined. Birds fed HL had a lower E. coli load (P < 0.05) than birds fed CTL- or CTL+ at d 3, and lower than birds fed CTL- at d 6. At d 9, the E. coli load was lower (P < 0.05) in birds fed MOS or HL than in those fed the CTL- or CTL+ diets; LL-fed birds had lower E. coli load than those fed CTL-. Birds fed MOS or LL had a comparative advantage over CTL+ birds in increasing populations of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria and lowering E. coli loads after challenge. PMID:18029796

  9. Association mapping of common bacterial blight resistance QTL in Ontario bean breeding populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navabi Alireza

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Common bacterial blight (CBB, incited by Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. phaseoli (Xap, is a major yield-limiting factor of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L. production around the world. Host resistance is practically the most effective and environmentally-sound approach to control CBB. Unlike conventional QTL discovery strategies, in which bi-parental populations (F2, RIL, or DH need to be developed, association mapping-based strategies can use plant breeding populations to synchronize QTL discovery and cultivar development. Results A population of 469 dry bean lines of different market classes representing plant materials routinely developed in a bean breeding program were used. Of them, 395 lines were evaluated for CBB resistance at 14 and 21 DAI (Days After Inoculation in the summer of 2009 in an artificially inoculated CBB nursery in south-western Ontario. All lines were genotyped using 132 SNPs (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms evenly distributed across the genome. Of the 132 SNPs, 26 SNPs had more than 20% missing data, 12 SNPs were monomorphic, and 17 SNPs had a MAF (Minor Allelic Frequency of less than 0.20, therefore only 75 SNPs were used for association study, based on one SNP per locus. The best possible population structure was to assign 36% and 64% of the lines into Andean and Mesoamerican subgroups, respectively. Kinship analysis also revealed complex familial relationships among all lines, which corresponds with the known pedigree history. MLM (Mixed Linear Model analysis, including population structure and kinship, was used to discover marker-trait associations. Eighteen and 22 markers were significantly associated with CBB rating at 14 and 21 DAI, respectively. Fourteen markers were significant for both dates and the markers UBC420, SU91, g321, g471, and g796 were highly significant (p ≤ 0.001. Furthermore, 12 significant SNP markers were co-localized with or close to the CBB-QTLs identified previously in bi

  10. Campylobacter colonization and proliferation in the broiler chicken upon natural field challenge is not affected by the bird growth rate or breed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gormley, Fraser J; Bailey, Richard A; Watson, Kellie A; McAdam, Jim; Avendaño, Santiago; Stanley, William A; Koerhuis, Alfons N M

    2014-11-01

    The zoonotic association between Campylobacter bacteria in poultry and humans has been characterized by decades of research which has attempted to elucidate the epidemiology of this complex relationship and to reduce carriage within poultry. While much work has focused on the mechanisms facilitating its success in contaminating chicken flocks (and other animal hosts), it remains difficult to consistently exclude Campylobacter under field conditions. Within the United Kingdom poultry industry, various bird genotypes with widely varying growth rates are available to meet market needs and consumer preferences. However, little is known about whether any differences in Campylobacter carriage exist across this modern broiler range. The aim of this study was to establish if a relationship exists between growth rate or breed and cecal Campylobacter concentration after natural commercial flock Campylobacter challenge. In one investigation, four pure line genotypes of various growth rates were grown together, while in the second, eight different commercial broiler genotypes were grown individually. In both studies, the Campylobacter concentration was measured in the ceca at 42 days of age, revealing no significant difference in cecal load between birds of different genotypes both in mixed- and single-genotype pens. This is important from a public health perspective and suggests that other underlying reasons beyond genotype are likely to control and affect Campylobacter colonization within chickens. Further studies to gain a better understanding of colonization dynamics and subsequent proliferation are needed, as are novel approaches to reduce the burden in poultry.

  11. Population structure of jatropha and its implication for the breeding program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, D N; Ferreira, J L; Pasqual, M; Generoso, A L; Setotaw, T A; Cançado, G M A; Vendrame, W A

    2016-01-01

    Jatropha (Jatropha curcas L.) has potential as an oilseed crop that requires the development of technology for its exploitation. The objective of this study was to assess the population structure and the genetic diversity in jatropha accessions at a global level using simple sequence repeat (SSR) molecular markers. Jatropha accessions (N = 109) from 10 countries were genotyped using 10 SSR markers. The results showed a low level of genetic diversity among 92 accessions originating from India, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Brazil, Honduras, and Indonesia, which were grouped in one cluster. In contrast, accessions from Mexico and Costa Rica showed high level of genetic variability. These accessions may be used to increase the genetic diversity of jatropha in the breeding populations. The study also showed the need of collecting activity from the center of diversity (Mexico and Costa Rica) to aggregate the genetic diversity in the international collections of jatropha. PMID:27050989

  12. Are population dynamics of shorebirds affected by El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) while on their non-breeding grounds in Ecuador?

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Hara, Patrick D.; Haase, Ben J. M.; Elner, Robert W.; Smith, Barry D.; Kenyon, Jamie K.

    2007-08-01

    Declines in avian populations are a global concern, particularly for species that migrate between Arctic-temperate and tropical locations. Long-term population studies offer opportunities to detect and document ecological effects attributable to long-term climatic cycles such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO). In this study, we report possible population-level effects of such climatic cycles on shorebird species that use two non-breeding season sites in Ecuador (Santa Elena peninsula area, near La Libertad). During our 9-year study period (1991/1992-1999/2000), there was a particularly strong ENSO warm phase event during 1997/1998. Population trend data for three species of shorebird, Western Sandpipers ( Calidris mauri), Semipalmated Sandpipers ( C. pusilla), and Least Sandpipers ( C. minutilla), indicated abundances generally declined during the 1990s, but there was an increase in the proportion of first-year birds and their abundance in the years following the 1997/1998 ENSO warm phase. There was some support for variation in apparent survivorship associated with the onset of the ENSO warm phase event in our population models, based on capture-mark-recapture data. Following the 1997/1998 ENSO event onset, individuals for all three species were significantly lighter during the non-breeding season ( F1,3789 = 6.6, p = 0.01). Least-squares mean mass (controlling for size, sex and day of capture) for first-year birds dropped significantly more than for adults following ENSO (first-year mass loss = 0.69 ± 0.12 g; adult mass loss = 0.34 ± 0.11 g, F1,3789 = 5.31, p = 0.021), and least-squares mean mass dropped most during the period when sandpipers prepare for northward migration by gaining mass and moulting into breeding plumage. Least Sandpipers may have declined the most in mean mass following ENSO (0.76 ± 0.19 g), whereas Semipalmated Sandpipers were 0.52 ± 0.12 g lighter, and Western Sandpipers 0.40 ± 0.13 g lighter, but overall variation among

  13. Genetic diversity and population structure of 10 Chinese indigenous egg-type duck breeds assessed by microsatellite polymorphism

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Li Hui-Fang; Song Wei-Tao; Shu Jing-Ting; Chen Kuan-Wei; Zhu Wen-Qi; Han Wei; Xu Wen-Juan

    2010-04-01

    The genetic structure and diversity of 10 Chinese indigenous egg-type duck breeds were investigated using 29 microsatellite markers. The total number of animals examined were 569, on average 57 animals per breed were selected. The microsatellite marker set analysed provided 177 alleles (mean 6.1 alleles per locus, ranging from 3 to 10). All populations showed high levels of heterozygosity with the lowest estimate of 0.539 for the Jinding ducks, and the highest 0.609 observed for Jingjiang partridge ducks. The global heterozygote deficit across all populations ($F_{\\text{IT}}$) amounted to $-0.363$. About 10% of the total genetic variability originated from differences among breeds, with all loci contributing significantly. An unrooted consensus tree was constructed using the NeighborNet tree based on the Reynold’s genetic distance. The structure software was used to assess genetic clustering of these egg-type duck breeds. Clustering analysis provided an accurate representation of the current genetic relations among the breeds. An integrated analysis was undertaken to obtain information on the population dynamics in Chinese indigenous egg-type duck breeds, and to better determine the conservation priorities.

  14. Contributions of Weather and Predation to Reduced Breeding Success in a Threatened Northern Loggerhead Shrike Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas M. Collister

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Populations on the periphery of a species' range may experience more severe environmental conditions relative to populations closer to the core of the range. As a consequence, peripheral populations may have lower reproductive success or survival, which may affect their persistence. In this study, we examined the influence of environmental conditions on breeding biology and nest survival in a threatened population of Loggerhead Shrikes (Lanius ludovicianus at the northern limit of the range in southeastern Alberta, Canada, and compared our estimates with those from shrike populations elsewhere in the range. Over the 2-year study in 1992–1993, clutch sizes averaged 6.4 eggs, and most nests were initiated between mid-May and mid-June. Rate of renesting following initial nest failure was 19%, and there were no known cases of double-brooding. Compared with southern populations, rate of renesting was lower and clutch sizes tended to be larger, whereas the length of the nestling and hatchling periods appeared to be similar. Most nest failures were directly associated with nest predators, but weather had a greater direct effect in 1993. Nest survival models indicated higher daily nest survival during warmer temperatures and lower precipitation, which may include direct effects of weather on nestlings as well as indirect effects on predator behavior or food abundance. Daily nest survival varied over the nesting cycle in a curvilinear pattern, with a slight increase through laying, approximately constant survival through incubation, and a decline through the nestling period. Partial brood loss during the nestling stage was high, particularly in 1993, when conditions were cool and wet. Overall, the lower likelihood of renesting, lower nest survival, and higher partial brood loss appeared to depress reproductive output in this population relative to those elsewhere in the range, and may have increased susceptibility to population declines.

  15. The Breeding Biology and Population Dynamics of the Black Tern in Western New York

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The black tern is currently considered a migratory non-game bird of management concern by the US Fish and Wildlife Service Off ice of Migratory Bird Management and...

  16. Multi-Generational Kinship, Multiple Mating, and Flexible Modes of Parental Care in a Breeding Population of the Veery (Catharus fuscescens, a Trans-Hemispheric Migratory Songbird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew R Halley

    Full Text Available We discovered variable modes of parental care in a breeding population of color-banded Veeries (Catharus fuscescens, a Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbird, long thought to be socially monogamous, and performed a multi-locus DNA microsatellite analysis to estimate parentage and kinship in a sample of 37 adults and 21 offspring. We detected multiple mating in both sexes, and four modes of parental care that varied in frequency within and between years including multiple male feeders at some nests, and males attending multiple nests in the same season, each with a different female. Unlike other polygynandrous systems, genetic evidence indicates that multi-generational patterns of kinship occur among adult Veeries at our study site, and this was corroborated by the capture of an adult male in 2013 that had been banded as a nestling in 2011 at a nest attended by multiple male feeders. All genotyped adults (n = 37 were related to at least one other bird in the sample at the cousin level or greater (r ≥ 0.125, and 81% were related to at least one other bird at the half-sibling level or greater (r ≥ 0.25, range 0.25-0.60. Although our sample size is small, it appears that the kin structure is maintained by natal philopatry in both sexes, and that Veeries avoid mating with close genetic kin. At nests where all adult feeders were genotyped (n = 9, the male(s were unrelated to the female (mean r = -0.11 ± 0.15, whereas genetic data suggest close kinship (r = 0.254 between two male co-feeders at the nests of two females in 2011, and among three of four females that were mated to the same polygynous male in 2012. To our knowledge, this is the first evidence of polygynandry occurring among multiple generations of close genetic kin on the breeding ground of a Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbird.

  17. Multi-Generational Kinship, Multiple Mating, and Flexible Modes of Parental Care in a Breeding Population of the Veery (Catharus fuscescens), a Trans-Hemispheric Migratory Songbird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalavacharla, Venugopal

    2016-01-01

    We discovered variable modes of parental care in a breeding population of color-banded Veeries (Catharus fuscescens), a Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbird, long thought to be socially monogamous, and performed a multi-locus DNA microsatellite analysis to estimate parentage and kinship in a sample of 37 adults and 21 offspring. We detected multiple mating in both sexes, and four modes of parental care that varied in frequency within and between years including multiple male feeders at some nests, and males attending multiple nests in the same season, each with a different female. Unlike other polygynandrous systems, genetic evidence indicates that multi-generational patterns of kinship occur among adult Veeries at our study site, and this was corroborated by the capture of an adult male in 2013 that had been banded as a nestling in 2011 at a nest attended by multiple male feeders. All genotyped adults (n = 37) were related to at least one other bird in the sample at the cousin level or greater (r ≥ 0.125), and 81% were related to at least one other bird at the half-sibling level or greater (r ≥ 0.25, range 0.25–0.60). Although our sample size is small, it appears that the kin structure is maintained by natal philopatry in both sexes, and that Veeries avoid mating with close genetic kin. At nests where all adult feeders were genotyped (n = 9), the male(s) were unrelated to the female (mean r = -0.11 ± 0.15), whereas genetic data suggest close kinship (r = 0.254) between two male co-feeders at the nests of two females in 2011, and among three of four females that were mated to the same polygynous male in 2012. To our knowledge, this is the first evidence of polygynandry occurring among multiple generations of close genetic kin on the breeding ground of a Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbird. PMID:27331399

  18. Epidemiology of the emergent disease Paridae pox in an intensively studied wild bird population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shelly Lachish

    Full Text Available Paridae pox, a novel avipoxvirus infection, has recently been identified as an emerging infectious disease affecting wild tit species in Great Britain. The incursion of Paridae pox to a long-term study site where populations of wild tits have been monitored in detail for several decades provided a unique opportunity to obtain information on the local-scale epidemiological characteristics of this novel infection during a disease outbreak. Using captures of >8000 individual birds, we show that, within two years of initial emergence, Paridae pox had become established within the population of great tits (Parus major reaching relatively high peak prevalence (10%, but was far less prevalent (<1% in sympatric populations of several other closely related, abundant Paridae species. Nonlinear smoothing models revealed that the temporal pattern of prevalence among great tits was characterised by within-year fluctuations indicative of seasonal forcing of infection rates, which was likely driven by multiple environmental and demographic factors. There was individual heterogeneity in the course of infection and, although recovery was possible, diseased individuals were far less likely to be recaptured than healthy individuals, suggesting a survival cost of infection. This study demonstrates the value of long-term monitoring for obtaining key epidemiological data necessary to understand disease dynamics, spread and persistence in natural populations.

  19. Population recovery following decline in an endangered stream-breeding frog (Mixophyes fleayi from subtropical Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Alan Newell

    Full Text Available Amphibians have undergone dramatic declines and extinctions worldwide. Prominent among these have been the stream-breeding frogs in the rainforests of eastern Australia. The amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd has been postulated as the primary cause of these declines. We conducted a capture-mark-recapture study over a 7-year period on the endangered Fleay's barred frog (Mixophyes fleayi at two independent streams (30 km apart in order to assess the stability of these populations. This species had undergone a severe decline across its narrow geographic range. Mark-recapture modelling showed that the number of individuals increased 3-10 fold along stream transects over this period. Frog detection probabilities were frequently above 50% but declined as the populations increased. Adult survival was important to overall population persistence in light of low recruitment events, suggesting that longevity may be a key factor in this recovery. One male and female were present in the capture record for >6 years. This study provides an unambiguous example of population recovery in the presence of Bd.

  20. Genotypic variation in a breeding population of yellow sweet clover (Melilotus officinalis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Luo

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Yellow sweet clover is a widely spread legume species that has potential to be used as a forage crop in Western China. However, limited information is available on the genetic variation for herbage yield, key morphological traits and coumarin content. In this study, 40 half sib (HS families of M. officinalis were evaluated for genotypic variation and phenotypic and genotypic correlation for the traits: LS (leaf to stem ratio, SV (spring vigour, LA (leaf area, PH (plant height, DW (herbage dry weight, SD (stem diameter, SN (stem number, Cou (coumarin content, SY (seed yield, across two locations, Yuzhong and Linze, in Western China. There was significant (P<0.05 genotypic variation among the HS families for all traits. There was also significant (P<0.05 genotype-by-environment interaction for the traits DW, PH, SD, SN and SV. The estimates of HS family mean repeatability across two locations ranged from 0.32 for SN to 0.89 for LA. Pattern analysis generated four HS family groups where group 3 consisted of families with above average expression for DW and below average expression for Cou. The breeding population developed by polycrossing the selected HS families within group 3 will provide a significant breeding pool for M. officinalis cultivar development in China.

  1. Scrapie prevalence in sheep of susceptible genotype is declining in a population subject to breeding for resistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Engel Bas

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Susceptibility of sheep to scrapie infection is known to be modulated by the PrP genotype of the animal. In the Netherlands an ambitious scrapie control programme was started in 1998, based on genetic selection of animals for breeding. From 2002 onwards EU regulations required intensive active scrapie surveillance as well as certain control measures in affected flocks. Here we analyze the data on genotype frequencies and scrapie prevalence in the Dutch sheep population obtained from both surveillance and affected flocks, to identify temporal trends. We also estimate the genotype-specific relative risks to become a detected scrapie case. Results We find that the breeding programme has produced a steady increase in the level of genetic scrapie resistance in the Dutch sheep population. We also find that a significant decline in the prevalence of scrapie in tested animals has occurred a number of years after the start of the breeding programme. Most importantly, the estimated scrapie prevalence level per head of susceptible genotype is also declining significantly, indicating that selective breeding causes a population effect. Conclusions The Dutch scrapie control programme has produced a steady rise in genetic resistance levels in recent years. A recent decline in the scrapie prevalence per tested sheep of susceptible prion protein genotype indicates that selective breeding causes the desired population effect.

  2. Performance of climate envelope models in retrodicting recent changes in bird population size from observed climatic change

    OpenAIRE

    Green, Rhys E.; Collingham, Yvonne C.; Willis, Stephen G; Gregory, Richard D; Smith, Ken W.; Huntley, Brian

    2008-01-01

    Twenty-five-year population trends of 42 bird species rare as breeders in the UK were examined in relation to changes in climatic suitability simulated using climatic envelope models. The effects of a series of potential ‘nuisance’ variables were also assessed. A statistically significant positive correlation was found across species between population trend and climate suitability trend. The demonstration that climate envelope models are able to retrodict species' population trends provides ...

  3. Antral follicles population in heifers and cows of Nelore and Girolando breeds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jair Sábio de Oliveira Junior

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate ovarian antral follicle populations (OAFP of Nelore and Girolando breed heifers (12–18 months old and cows (24–60 months old. Animals were assigned to four groups: (1 Nelore cows (n = 18, (2 Girolando cows (n = 20, (3 Nelore heifers (n = 7, and (4 Girolando heifers (n = 7. Cows were treated to synchronize follicular wave emergence by implantation of an intravaginal device containing 1.9 g of progesterone, as well as intramuscular administration of 2 mg of estradiol benzoate and 25 mg of dinoprost. This synchronization treatment was administered at a random day of the estrous cycle of each cow, designated D0. Intravaginal devices were removed on D7, and on D11, OAFP counts were performed by transvaginal ovarian ultrasound. For each cow, all follicles ?3 mm in diameter were counted in both ovaries and counts were performed three times at 35-day intervals. Counts were also obtained from heifers, but these animals were not treated for synchronization of follicular wave emergence. Analysis of variance (ANOVA with Tukey’s test and Pearson’s correlation test were used to compare mean OAFPs between counts as well as mean OAFPs between breed and age groups. No differences were observed in mean OAFPs between Nelore and Girolando cows (30.9 vs. 26.7, respectively; P > 0.05 or heifers (16.2 vs. 18.1, respectively; P > 0.05. However, within each breed, there were differences in mean OAFPs between heifers and cows (for Nelore cattle: 16.2 and 30.9, respectively; for Girolando cattle: 18.1 and 26.7, respectively; both P < 0.05. In conclusion, OAFPs were similar between Nelore and Girolando breeds and were influenced by age. Furthermore, we observed a high correlation for individual animals between the mean numbers of follicles counted in both ovaries and total number of follicles counted in either the right or left ovary, indicating that the evaluation of a single ovary is sufficient to estimate the OAFP of an

  4. INVESTIGATION OF ALFALFA LOCAL POPULATIONS FOR CREATION OF NEW BREEDING GERMPLAZM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tihomir Čupić

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Yield of dry matter and green mass are important factors in selection of fodder crop cultivars. Low genetic gain was achieved during the long time of fodder crops breeding for yield. Therefore we investigated possibility of using local populations of alfalfa for yield increase with direct and indirect selection. Strong and significant influence of genotypes and environments was recorded for all examined traits and their interactions at the level p<0.01. The highest variability was recorded for green mass yield 48.21%; while the lowest variation was for height 13.18%. High share of genotype variance as well as high heritability were recorded in total variance for the traits number of stem and plant height.

  5. Tabapuã breed in Northeastern Brazil: genetic progress and population structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dirlane Novais Caires

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the history of the Tabapuã breed in Northeastern Brazil by determining its population structure and genetic progress. Pedigree information from animals born in the period between 1965 and 2006 and weight-adjusted data at 205 (W205, 365 (W365 and 550 (W550 days of age for bovines born between 1975 and 2006 were used. The (covariance components and genetic value were estimated using the application MTDFREML. Also, the software ENDOG was used for pedigree analysis and parameter estimation based on the probabilities of gene origin, inbreeding and average generation interval. The heritability coefficients for direct genetic effects were 0.21±0.03, 0.26±0.04 and 0.36±0.05 for W205, W365 and W550, respectively. During the first 20 years studied, the observed effective size was small. The generation intervals by gametic pathway were: 7.7±3.4 (sire-son, 7.8±3.7 (sire-daughter, 6.9±3.3 (dam-son, 6.8 ± 3.1 (dam-daughter, and mean interval of 7.3±3.4 years. The studied population showed moderate heritability coefficients, whereas the genetic gains based on the studied traits may be higher than those estimated by genetic tendencies. Reduced generation interval, increased effective size and continuous mating control of relatives are important strategies for the genetic progress of the Tabapuã breed in the region.

  6. Fidelity and breeding probability related to population density and individual quality in black brent geese Branta bernicla nigricans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sedinger, J.S.; Chelgren, N.D.; Ward, D.H.; Lindberg, M.S.

    2008-01-01

    1. Patterns of temporary emigration (associated with non-breeding) are important components of variation in individual quality. Permanent emigration from the natal area has important implications for both individual fitness and local population dynamics. 2. We estimated both permanent and temporary emigration of black brent geese (Branta bernicla nigricans Lawrence) from the Tutakoke River colony, using observations of marked brent geese on breeding and wintering areas, and recoveries of ringed individuals by hunters. We used the likelihood developed by Lindberg, Kendall, Hines & Anderson 2001 (Combining band recovery data and Pollock's robust design to model temporary and permanent emigration. Biometrics, 57, 273-281) to assess hypotheses and estimate parameters. 3. Temporary emigration (the converse of breeding) varied among age classes up to age 5, and differed between individuals that bred in the previous years vs. those that did not. Consistent with the hypothesis of variation in individual quality, individuals with a higher probability of breeding in one year also had a higher probability of breeding the next year. 4. Natal fidelity of females ranged from 0.70 ?? 0.07-0.96 ?? 0.18 and averaged 0.83. In contrast to Lindberg et al. (1998), we did not detect a relationship between fidelity and local population density. Natal fidelity was negatively correlated with first-year survival, suggesting that competition among individuals of the same age for breeding territories influenced dispersal. Once females nested at the Tutakoke River, colony breeding fidelity was 1.0. 5. Our analyses show substantial variation in individual quality associated with fitness, which other analyses suggest is strongly influenced by early environment. Our analyses also suggest substantial interchange among breeding colonies of brent geese, as first shown by Lindberg et al. (1998).

  7. Variation of cats under domestication: genetic assignment of domestic cats to breeds and worldwide random-bred populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurushima, J D; Lipinski, M J; Gandolfi, B; Froenicke, L; Grahn, J C; Grahn, R A; Lyons, L A

    2013-06-01

    Both cat breeders and the lay public have interests in the origins of their pets, not only in the genetic identity of the purebred individuals, but also in the historical origins of common household cats. The cat fancy is a relatively new institution with over 85% of its 40-50 breeds arising only in the past 75 years, primarily through selection on single-gene aesthetic traits. The short, yet intense cat breed history poses a significant challenge to the development of a genetic marker-based breed identification strategy. Using different breed assignment strategies and methods, 477 cats representing 29 fancy breeds were analysed with 38 short tandem repeats, 148 intergenic and five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms. Results suggest the frequentist method of Paetkau (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.78, short tandem repeats = 0.88) surpasses the Bayesian method of Rannala and Mountain (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.56, short tandem repeats = 0.83) for accurate assignment of individuals to the correct breed. Additionally, a post-assignment verification step with the five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms accurately identified between 0.31 and 0.58 of the misassigned individuals raising the sensitivity of assignment with the frequentist method to 0.89 and 0.92 for single nucleotide polymorphisms and short tandem repeats respectively. This study provides a novel multistep assignment strategy and suggests that, despite their short breed history and breed family groupings, a majority of cats can be assigned to their proper breed or population of origin, that is, race.

  8. Variation of cats under domestication: genetic assignment of domestic cats to breeds and worldwide random-bred populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurushima, J D; Lipinski, M J; Gandolfi, B; Froenicke, L; Grahn, J C; Grahn, R A; Lyons, L A

    2013-06-01

    Both cat breeders and the lay public have interests in the origins of their pets, not only in the genetic identity of the purebred individuals, but also in the historical origins of common household cats. The cat fancy is a relatively new institution with over 85% of its 40-50 breeds arising only in the past 75 years, primarily through selection on single-gene aesthetic traits. The short, yet intense cat breed history poses a significant challenge to the development of a genetic marker-based breed identification strategy. Using different breed assignment strategies and methods, 477 cats representing 29 fancy breeds were analysed with 38 short tandem repeats, 148 intergenic and five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms. Results suggest the frequentist method of Paetkau (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.78, short tandem repeats = 0.88) surpasses the Bayesian method of Rannala and Mountain (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.56, short tandem repeats = 0.83) for accurate assignment of individuals to the correct breed. Additionally, a post-assignment verification step with the five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms accurately identified between 0.31 and 0.58 of the misassigned individuals raising the sensitivity of assignment with the frequentist method to 0.89 and 0.92 for single nucleotide polymorphisms and short tandem repeats respectively. This study provides a novel multistep assignment strategy and suggests that, despite their short breed history and breed family groupings, a majority of cats can be assigned to their proper breed or population of origin, that is, race. PMID:23171373

  9. Population trends of grassland birds in North America are linked to the prevalence of an agricultural epizootic in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nocera, Joseph J; Koslowsky, Hannah M

    2011-03-22

    Globalization of trade has dramatic socioeconomic effects, and, intuitively, significant ecological effects should follow. However, few quantitative examples exist of the interrelationship of globalization, socioeconomics, and ecological patterns. We present a striking illustration of a cascade in which bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE; "mad cow disease") outbreaks in Europe exerted pressure on global beef markets, subsequently affecting North American hayfields and grassland bird populations. We examined competing models, which linked the prevalence of BSE in five focal countries, volume of beef exports to those countries from North America, and the amount of hayfield harvested and the abundance of grassland birds in North America. We found that (i) imports from North America increased 1 y after BSE outbreaks; (ii) probably because fewer cattle remained, the hay harvest in North America was reduced 2 y after the outbreak; (iii) the reduced hay harvest yielded a positive response in grassland bird populations 3 y after the outbreak. PMID:21383197

  10. Temporally increasing spatial synchrony of North American temperature and bird populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Walter D.; Liebhold, Andrew M.

    2016-06-01

    The ecological impacts of modern global climate change are detectable in a wide variety of phenomena, ranging from shifts in species ranges to changes in community composition and human disease dynamics. So far, however, little attention has been given to temporal changes in spatial synchrony--the coincident change in abundance or value across the landscape--despite the importance of environmental synchrony as a driver of population trends and the central role of environmental variability in population rescue and extinction. Here we demonstrate that across North America, spatial synchrony of a significant proportion of 49 widespread North American wintering bird species has increased over the past 50 years--the period encompassing particularly intense anthropogenic effects in climate--paralleling significant increases in spatial synchrony of mean maximum air temperature. These results suggest the potential for increased spatial synchrony in environmental factors to be affecting a wide range of ecological phenomena. These effects are likely to vary, but for North American wildlife species, increased spatial synchrony driven by environmental factors may be the basis for a previously unrecognized threat to their long-term persistence in the form of more synchronized population dynamics reducing the potential for demographic rescue among interacting subpopulations.

  11. HUMIDIFICATION AS A FACTOR OF STRUCTURIAL ORGANIZATION OF BIRD POPULATIONS IN THE WOOD STANDS OF THE BIOSPHERE RESERVE ASKANIA NOVA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Listopadsky M. A.

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The influence of different humidification types towards appearance of forest vegetation conditions on spatial organization of birds in the wood stands is analyzed. Population density, coefficient of occurrence, and informative connection with six types of soil humidification are given for 53 bird species. The informative estimation of every humidification type is determined for every bird species. Thereby it is definitely a contribution of every gradation of edaphic factor to the structural genesis of dendrophilous bird communities. The strongest informative connection between humidity gradients and the avifauna structure of the wood stands is available in dry edaphotopes for margin representatives and fresh one for typical forest species. These two humidification types play a start function in the structural genesis of some blocks of dendrophilous bird communities per se. It is determined that change of bird species of forest-steppe faunogenetic complex by species from Nemoral complex undergoes in most cases on the border of the gradient between fresh and humid edaphotopes. For 53 species of birds from dendrophilous complex is was revealed that the importance of different levels of soil moisture has a different impact in shaping of the modern structure dendrophilous avifauna. Dry and especially drily edaphotopes determine the spatial structure of the species that are of forest-steppe origin and belong to the representatives of the optional component of dendrophilous bird communities. Wet edafotopes are involved in the formation of the spatial structure of species of predominantly immoral origin and relate to the obligate component of representatives of dendrophilous bitd comminities. Gradient wetting of edaphotopes on the verge of ‘linked’/’fresh’ is restructuring for the bird communities. It takes an optional replacement red communists feature to obligate. Stands rather dry and fresh items currently being the most active formation of

  12. Structure of Allozymatic Diversity of Ten Temperate and Adapted Exotic Breeding Populations of Maize (Zea mays L.)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHENG Da-hao; YU Yang; WANG Zhen-ping; LI Yan-ru

    2009-01-01

    Ten temperate and adapted exotic breeding populations of maize were studied with electrophoretic techniques. Three isozyme systems coded by nine allozyme loci were used for evaluating the genetic variability within and among populations.The results revealed that 78.57% of allozyme loci were polymorphic. Low allelic variation with a mean number of 1.84 alleles per locus per population was detected. But, these populations still maintained higher level of heterozygosity;moreover, the exotic populations had greater gene diversity than the temperate populations. All the populations were non-panmictic with negative Wright's fixation indexes (-0.091- -0.424). The tropical BS16 was typified by maximum allelic richness, percent of polymorphic loci and heterozygosity. More than 93% of the gene diversity maintained within populations, and the genetic differentiation among populations was low (0.002-0.191). Multivariate analysis demonstrated that the tropical BS29 diverged from other populations in the reverse direction. The temperate BS9 and tropical BS 16 were divergent each other, and highly differentiated from other temperate and tropical populations, consequently, these two populations would be analogically postulated as potential germplasms to establish new heterotic groups for temperate maize breeding programs.

  13. Adaptation of Musca domestica L. field population to laboratory breeding causes transcriptional alterations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorte H Højland

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The housefly, Musca domestica, has developed resistance to most insecticides applied for its control. Expression of genes coding for detoxification enzymes play a role in the response of the housefly when encountered by a xenobiotic. The highest level of constitutive gene expression of nine P450 genes was previously found in a newly-collected susceptible field population in comparison to three insecticide-resistant laboratory strains and a laboratory reference strain. RESULTS: We compared gene expression of five P450s by qPCR as well as global gene expression by RNAseq in the newly-acquired field population (845b in generation F1, F13 and F29 to test how gene expression changes following laboratory adaption. Four (CYP6A1, CYP6A36, CYP6D3, CYP6G4 of five investigated P450 genes adapted to breeding by decreasing expression. CYP6D1 showed higher female expression in F29 than in F1. For males, about half of the genes accessed in the global gene expression were up-regulated in F13 and F29 in comparison with the F1 population. In females, 60% of the genes were up-regulated in F13 in comparison with F1, while 33% were up-regulated in F29. Forty potential P450 genes were identified. In most cases, P450 gene expression was decreased in F13 flies in comparison with F1. Gene expression then increased from F13 to F29 in males and decreased further in females. CONCLUSION: The global gene expression changes massively during adaptation to laboratory breeding. In general, global expression decreased as a result of laboratory adaption in males, while female expression was not unidirectional. Expression of P450 genes was in general down-regulated as a result of laboratory adaption. Expression of hexamerin, coding for a storage protein was increased, while gene expression of genes coding for amylases decreased. This suggests a major impact of the surrounding environment on gene response to xenobiotics and genetic composition of housefly strains.

  14. Survival of Coelaenomenodera lameensis (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) in Relation to the Physical Characteristics of Different Oil Palm (Elaeis sp.) Breeding Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaudoin-Ollivier, L; Flori, A; Coffi, A; Cros, D; Glitho, I; Nodichao, L

    2015-01-01

    The edibility of different Elaeis sp. breeding populations present in Benin was tested for the leaf miner Coelaenomenodera lameensis Berti (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), a major oil palm pest in Africa. Experiments carried out in sleeves revealed the oviposition capacities of females and the mortality rates for the different developmental stages by comparing the populations found on two breeding populations of Elaeis oleifera (HBK) Cortes, four of Elaeis guineensis Jacquin and four (E. guineensis × E. oleifera) × E. guineensis backcrosses. Females laid their eggs similarly on all breeding populations, with a preference for the E. guineensis La Mé origin. The average hatching rate reached 80% for the La Mé origin as opposed to 28% for the Deli origin. The mortality rates for the larval instars were greater on E. oleifera, on certain backcrosses and on the Deli origin of E. guineensis. Development at the second- and third- larval instars was the most affected, with a mortality rate of three to five times greater than that seen on La Mé. Epidermis and cuticle measurements indicated which breeding populations were suitable or unsuitable for the development of C. lameensis. E. guineensis, with its thin epidermis (12 µm) and cuticle (2 µm), proved to be highly susceptible to C. lameensis attacks. On the other hand, E. oleifera, which is very resistant, exhibited a thicker epidermis (17 µm) and cuticle (4 µm). The breeding populations were thus classified according to the positive or negative influence they exerted on the insect's egg laying and feeding. PMID:26113512

  15. Breeding Status and Population Trends of Golden Eagles in Northeastern Québec, Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junior A. Tremblay

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In North America, it is hypothesized that the Golden Eagle's (Aquila chrysaetos eastern population declined during the period 1946-1973 because of organochlorine pesticides and other anthropogenic causes of mortality. Since 1970, upward trends for the species have been observed at most eastern hawkwatches. To determine whether such positive trends can be observed on breeding grounds, Golden Eagle counts were performed to monitor nesting territory occupancy between 1994 and 2007 in the Moisie and Sainte-Marguerite River valleys, northeastern Québec. Aerial surveys were conducted during seven of the 14 years. During this period, the number of known nesting territories in the study area increased from 10 to 20, while the number of pairs rose from six to 14. The increase is attributed mostly to investigators' improved experience in finding nests and to their greater familiarity with the study area, and possibly to the growth of the regional population. Occupancy of nesting territories by pairs was very stable over the years. Annual mean % of laying pairs (or laying rate was 48.0 (SD = 19.9, and productivity (mean number of fledglings per pair was 0.49 (SD = 0.35.

  16. Disentangling the Relative Importance of Changes in Climate and Land-Use Intensity in Driving Recent Bird Population Trends

    OpenAIRE

    Eglington, Sarah M.; Pearce-Higgins, James W.

    2012-01-01

    Threats to biodiversity resulting from habitat destruction and deterioration have been documented for many species, whilst climate change is regarded as increasingly impacting upon species' distribution and abundance. However, few studies have disentangled the relative importance of these two drivers in causing recent population declines. We quantify the relative importance of both processes by modelling annual variation in population growth of 18 farmland bird species in the UK as a function...

  17. Multilocus phylogeography and population structure of common eiders breeding in North America and Scandinavia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Scribner, Kim T.; McCracken, Kevin G.

    2014-01-01

    Aim:  Glacial refugia during the Pleistocene had major impacts on the levels and spatial apportionment of genetic diversity of species in northern latitude ecosystems. We characterized patterns of population subdivision, and tested hypotheses associated with locations of potential Pleistocene refugia and the relative contribution of these refugia to the post-glacial colonization of North America and Scandinavia by common eiders (Somateria mollissima). Specifically, we evaluated localities hypothesized as ice-free areas or glacial refugia for other Arctic vertebrates, including Beringia, the High Arctic Canadian Archipelago, Newfoundland Bank, Spitsbergen Bank and north-west Norway. Location: Alaska, Canada, Norway and Sweden. Methods: Molecular data from 12 microsatellite loci, the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region, and two nuclear introns were collected and analysed for 15 populations of common eiders (n = 716) breeding throughout North America and Scandinavia. Population genetic structure, historical population fluctuations and gene flow were inferred using F-statistics, analyses of molecular variance, and multilocus coalescent analyses. Results: Significant inter-population variation in allelic and haplotypic frequencies were observed (nuclear DNA FST = 0.004–0.290; mtDNA ΦST = 0.051–0.927). Whereas spatial differentiation in nuclear genes was concordant with subspecific designations, geographic proximity was more predictive of inter-population variance in mitochondrial DNA haplotype frequency. Inferences of historical population demography were consistent with restriction of common eiders to four geographic areas during the Last Glacial Maximum: Belcher Islands, Newfoundland Bank, northern Alaska and Svalbard. Three of these areas coincide with previously identified glacial refugia: Newfoundland Bank, Beringia and Spitsbergen Bank. Gene-flow and clustering analyses indicated that the Beringian refugium contributed little to common eider post

  18. Disentangling the relative importance of changes in climate and land-use intensity in driving recent bird population trends.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah M Eglington

    Full Text Available Threats to biodiversity resulting from habitat destruction and deterioration have been documented for many species, whilst climate change is regarded as increasingly impacting upon species' distribution and abundance. However, few studies have disentangled the relative importance of these two drivers in causing recent population declines. We quantify the relative importance of both processes by modelling annual variation in population growth of 18 farmland bird species in the UK as a function of measures of land-use intensity and weather. Modelled together, both had similar explanatory power in accounting for annual fluctuations in population growth. When these models were used to retrodict population trends for each species as a function of annual variation in land-use intensity and weather combined, and separately, retrodictions incorporating land-use intensity were more closely linked to observed population trends than retrodictions based only on weather, and closely matched the UK farmland bird index from 1970 onwards. Despite more stable land-use intensity in recent years, climate change (inferred from weather trends has not overtaken land-use intensity as the dominant driver of bird populations.

  19. Disease screening of three breeding populations of adult exhibition budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) in New Zealand reveals a high prevalence of a novel polyomavirus and avian malaria infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baron, Hamish R; Howe, Laryssa; Varsani, Arvind; Doneley, Robert J T

    2014-03-01

    Disease surveillance is vital to the management of New Zealand's endemic and threatened avian species. Three infectious agents that are potential threats to New Zealand's endemic birds include avian polyomavirus (APV), beak and feather disease virus (BFDV), and avian malaria. All three agents have been reported in New Zealand; however, possible reservoir populations have not been identified. In this communication, we report the first study of APV, BFDV, and avian malaria in introduced adult exhibition budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) in New Zealand. Blood samples were collected from 90 living adult budgerigars from three breeding locations in the North Island of New Zealand. An overall APV prevalence of 22% was determined using a broad-spectrum nested PCR that amplified the major capsid protein VP1 gene of polyomavirus. Phylogenetic analysis of the VP1 gene revealed a unique isolate of APV, which had a sequence divergence of 32% to previously reported budgerigar fledgling disease strains and 33% to the recently reported New Zealand finch isolate. All of the budgerigars sampled were found to be PCR negative for BFDV, and an overall prevalence of 30% was detected by PCR for avian malaria. Sequencing revealed the presence of ubiquitous malarial strains and also the potentially destructive Plasmodium relictum strain. The results of this study suggest that both APV and avian malaria are present in New Zealand adult budgerigars, and our study highlights the need for further studies to determine whether these pathogens in captive bird populations may be a threat or spill over into New Zealand's endemic and threatened avifauna and whether prevention and control methods need to be implemented. PMID:24758122

  20. Carry-over effects of conditions at the wintering grounds on breeding plumage signals in a migratory bird: roles of phenotypic plasticity and selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Järvistö, P E; Calhim, S; Schuett, W; Sirkiä, P M; Velmala, W; Laaksonen, T

    2016-08-01

    To understand the consequences of ever-changing environment on the dynamics of phenotypic traits, distinguishing between selection processes and individual plasticity is crucial. We examined individual consistency/plasticity in several male secondary sexual traits expressed during the breeding season (white wing and forehead patch size, UV reflectance of white wing patch and dorsal melanin coloration) in a migratory pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca) population over an 11-year period. Furthermore, we studied carry-over effects of three environmental variables (NAO, a climatic index; NDVI, a vegetation index; and rainfall) at the wintering grounds (during prebreeding moult) on the expression of these breeding plumage traits of pied flycatcher males at individual and population levels. Whereas NAO correlates negatively with moisture in West Africa, NDVI correlates positively with primary production. Forehead patch size and melanin coloration were highly consistent within individuals among years, whereas the consistency of the other two traits was moderate. Wing patch size decreased with higher NAO and increased with higher rainfall and NDVI at the individual level. Interestingly, small-patched males suffered lower survival during high NAO winters than large-patched males, and vice versa during low NAO winters. These counteracting processes meant that the individual-level change was masked at the population level where no relationship was found. Our results provide a good example of how variation in the phenotypic composition of a natural population can be a result of both environment-dependent individual plasticity and short-term microevolution. Moreover, when plasticity and viability selection operate simultaneously, their impacts on population composition may not be evident. PMID:27159261

  1. Population structure and history of the Welsh sheep breeds determined by whole genome genotyping

    OpenAIRE

    Beynon, Sarah E.; Slavov, Gancho T; Farré, Marta; Sunduimijid, Bolormaa; Waddams, Kate; Davies, Brian; Haresign, William; Kijas, James; MacLeod, Iona M.; Newbold, C. Jamie; Davies, Lynfa; Larkin, Denis M

    2015-01-01

    Background One of the most economically important areas within the Welsh agricultural sector is sheep farming, contributing around £230 million to the UK economy annually. Phenotypic selection over several centuries has generated a number of native sheep breeds, which are presumably adapted to the diverse and challenging landscape of Wales. Little is known about the history, genetic diversity and relationships of these breeds with other European breeds. We genotyped 353 individuals from 18 na...

  2. Changes in patch features may exacerbate or compensate for the effect of habitat loss on forest bird populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ainhoa Magrach

    Full Text Available One and a half centuries after Darwin visited Chiloe Island, what he described as "…an island covered by one great forest…" has lost two-thirds of its forested areas. At this biodiversity hotspot, forest surface is becoming increasingly fragmented due to unregulated logging, clearing for pastures and replacement by exotic tree plantations. Decrease in patch size, increased isolation and "edge effects" can influence the persistence of forest species in remnant fragments. We assessed how these variables affect local density for six forest birds, chosen to include the most important seed dispersers (four species and bird pollinators (two species, one of which acts also as seed disperser, plus the most common insectivore (Aphrastura spinicauda. Based on cue-count point surveys (8 points per fragment, we estimated bird densities for each species in 22 forest fragments of varying size, shape, isolation and internal-habitat structure (e.g. tree size and epiphyte cover. Bird densities varied with fragment connectivity (three species and shape (three species, but none of the species was significantly affected by patch size. Satellite image analyses revealed that, from 1985 to 2008, forested area decreased by 8.8% and the remaining forest fragments became 16% smaller, 58-73% more isolated and 11-50% more regular. During that period, bird density estimates for the northern part of Chiloé (covering an area of 1214.75 km(2 decreased for one species (elaenia, increased for another two (chucao and hummingbird and did not vary for three (rayadito, thrust and blackbird. For the first three species, changes in patch features respectively exacerbated, balanced and overcame the effects of forest loss on bird population size (landscape-level abundance. Hence, changes in patch features can modulate the effect of habitat fragmentation on forest birds, suggesting that spatial planning (guided by spatially-explicit models can be an effective tool to facilitate

  3. Avian malaria in Hawaiian forest birds: Infection and population impacts across species and elevations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuel, Michael D.; Woodworth, Bethany L.; Atkinson, Carter T.; Hart, P. J.; LaPointe, Dennis

    2015-01-01

    Wildlife diseases can present significant threats to ecological systems and biological diversity, as well as domestic animal and human health. However, determining the dynamics of wildlife diseases and understanding the impact on host populations is a significant challenge. In Hawai‘i, there is ample circumstantial evidence that introduced avian malaria (Plasmodium relictum) has played an important role in the decline and extinction of many native forest birds. However, few studies have attempted to estimate disease transmission and mortality, survival, and individual species impacts in this distinctive ecosystem. We combined multi-state capture-recapture (longitudinal) models with cumulative age-prevalence (cross-sectional) models to evaluate these patterns in Apapane, Hawai‘i Amakihi, and Iiwi in low-, mid-, and high-elevation forests on the island of Hawai‘i based on four longitudinal studies of 3–7 years in length. We found species-specific patterns of malaria prevalence, transmission, and mortality rates that varied among elevations, likely in response to ecological factors that drive mosquito abundance. Malaria infection was highest at low elevations, moderate at mid elevations, and limited in high-elevation forests. Infection rates were highest for Iiwi and Apapane, likely contributing to the absence of these species in low-elevation forests. Adult malaria fatality rates were highest for Iiwi, intermediate for Amakihi at mid and high elevations, and lower for Apapane; low-elevation Amakihi had the lowest malaria fatality, providing strong evidence of malaria tolerance in this low-elevation population. Our study indicates that hatch-year birds may have greater malaria infection and/or fatality rates than adults. Our study also found that mosquitoes prefer feeding on Amakihi rather than Apapane, but Apapane are likely a more important reservoir for malaria transmission to mosquitoes. Our approach, based on host abundance and infection rates, may be an

  4. Relationships between nesting populations of wading birds and habitat features along the Atlantic Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erwin, R.M.; Spendelow, J.A.; Geissler, P.H.; Williams, B.K.; Whitman, William R.; Meredith, William H.

    1987-01-01

    Using previously published atlas data for 122 mixed-species wading bird colonies on islands along the Atlantic coast (Maine to Florida, 1976-77), we examined relationships between population sizes of 11 species of egrets, herons, ibises, and wood storks (Mycteria americana) and nine habitat variables. On nautical charts, we measured four island characteristics (area, length, width, shape), three isolation factors (distances to nearest island, mainland, and a water barrier),, and two variables related to potential feeding habitat within 5 km of the center of the colony (wetland area and land-water interface, i.e., the linear distance between the marsh/upland and all water bodies within the same 5-km radius). One univariable and five multivariable .procedures were used to determine which habitat features were best related to population size .(all species combined). Multicollinearity problems among the variables limited interpretation for most procedures. Both univariable and the multivariable procedures indicated that land-water interface was the most important of the nine variables, but for all models, less than 10% of the total variance was explained (rz is less than 0.10). The size of the colony was not related to the amount of wetland area (within 5-km).per se. Colony data showed better 'structure' when examined on the basis of geographic and disturbance gradients. Population sizes of colonies near man-altered habitats were compared with those surrounded by relatively natural habitats in three geographic zones: north, middle, and south. Significant differences were found in colony size among the three zones (south largest) and between disturbance types. Surprisingly, in all three zones, colonies near man-altered areas were larger on average than those near more natural habitats in this region. A possible reason for this difference is suggested.

  5. [Breeding success and direction of animal crossing in the hybrid russet (Spermophilus major) and yellow (Spermophilus fulvus) ground squirrel population].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shmyrov, A A; Kuz'min, A A; Kuz'min, A A; Titov, S V

    2011-01-01

    Reproductive relations between animals in the hybrid settlement of the russet and yellow ground squirrels are panmictic and are characterized by the absence of assortative crossings and by the presence of multimale pairings in females with evidently heterospermic broods. Maximum breeding success was observed for hybrid animals proving the fertility of hybrids. However, the hybrid breeding potential (young animal survival rate) is significantly lower as compared with russet and yellow ground squirrels, but the survival rate of the hybrid progeny in the hybrid population is not lower than in specific settlements. PMID:22117418

  6. Quantitative Assessment of the Importance of Phenotypic Plasticity in Adaptation to Climate Change in Wild Bird Populations

    OpenAIRE

    Vedder, Oscar; Bouwhuis, Sandra; SHELDON, BEN C.

    2013-01-01

    Predictions about the fate of species or populations under climate change scenarios typically neglect adaptive evolution and phenotypic plasticity, the two major mechanisms by which organisms can adapt to changing local conditions. As a consequence, we have little understanding of the scope for organisms to track changing environments by in situ adaptation. Here, we use a detailed individual-specific long-term population study of great tits (Parus major) breeding in Wytham Woods, Oxford, UK t...

  7. The importance of selection at the level of the pair over 25 years in a natural population of birds

    OpenAIRE

    Björklund, Mats; Gustafsson, Lars

    2013-01-01

    Knowledge of the pattern of selection in natural populations is fundamental for our understanding of the evolutionary process. Selection at higher levels has gained considerable theoretical support in recent years, and one possible level of selection is the breeding pair where fitness is a function of the pair and cannot be reduced to single individuals. We analyzed the importance of pair-level selection over 25 years in a natural population of the collared flycatcher. Pair-level selection wa...

  8. El ave mascota: desde el criadero a la pet-shop - de la pet-shop a la casa - The pet-bird: from the breeding centre to the pet-shop. From the pet- shop to home

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dra Elena Bert.

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available ResumenConocer cuales son los factores que más afectan al ave de jaulaen su recorrido de vida desde el criadero hasta el hogar donde serámantenida como ave mascota, cuales pueden ser las principales patologías detectadas en ese transito y como evitarlas, es el objetivo de este articulo que intenta lograr se establezcan normativas que permitan mantener integra la salud y el bienestar de las aves, desde el criadero hasta la casa.SummaryIn this article we evaluate the factors that can affect the birds ofcage in the breeding farm, as well as in the pet-shop, where they will be kept as pet birds. We expose the main pathologies that can emerge in the birds during the transportation or caused by the habitat changes. We suggest some measures to detect and control clinical signs, and we try to establish some regulations to guarantee the health and wellness of the birds from the breeding centre to home.

  9. Population genomic structure and linkage disequilibrium analysis of South African goat breeds using genome-wide SNP data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mdladla, K; Dzomba, E F; Huson, H J; Muchadeyi, F C

    2016-08-01

    The sustainability of goat farming in marginal areas of southern Africa depends on local breeds that are adapted to specific agro-ecological conditions. Unimproved non-descript goats are the main genetic resources used for the development of commercial meat-type breeds of South Africa. Little is known about genetic diversity and the genetics of adaptation of these indigenous goat populations. This study investigated the genetic diversity, population structure and breed relations, linkage disequilibrium, effective population size and persistence of gametic phase in goat populations of South Africa. Three locally developed meat-type breeds of the Boer (n = 33), Savanna (n = 31), Kalahari Red (n = 40), a feral breed of Tankwa (n = 25) and unimproved non-descript village ecotypes (n = 110) from four goat-producing provinces of the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and North West were assessed using the Illumina Goat 50K SNP Bead Chip assay. The proportion of SNPs with minor allele frequencies >0.05 ranged from 84.22% in the Tankwa to 97.58% in the Xhosa ecotype, with a mean of 0.32 ± 0.13 across populations. Principal components analysis, admixture and pairwise FST identified Tankwa as a genetically distinct population and supported clustering of the populations according to their historical origins. Genome-wide FST identified 101 markers potentially under positive selection in the Tankwa. Average linkage disequilibrium was highest in the Tankwa (r(2)  = 0.25 ± 0.26) and lowest in the village ecotypes (r(2) range = 0.09 ± 0.12 to 0.11 ± 0.14). We observed an effective population size of 100 kb with the exception of those in Savanna and Tswana populations. This study highlights the high level of genetic diversity in South African indigenous goats as well as the utility of the genome-wide SNP marker panels in genetic studies of these populations. PMID:27306145

  10. Molecular genetic analysis of a cattle population to reconstitute the extinct Algarvia breed

    OpenAIRE

    Rangel-Figueiredo Teresa; Neves Dina; Borges Carla; Sobral Maria F; Matos José; Penedo Maria CT; Ginja Catarina; Cravador Alfredo

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background Decisions to initiate conservation programmes need to account for extant variability, diversity loss and cultural and economic aspects. Molecular markers were used to investigate if putative Algarvia animals could be identified for use as progenitors in a breeding programme to recover this nearly extinct breed. ...

  11. Molecular genetic analysis of a cattle population to reconstitute the extinct Algarvia breed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rangel-Figueiredo Teresa

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Decisions to initiate conservation programmes need to account for extant variability, diversity loss and cultural and economic aspects. Molecular markers were used to investigate if putative Algarvia animals could be identified for use as progenitors in a breeding programme to recover this nearly extinct breed. Methods 46 individuals phenotypically representative of Algarvia cattle were genotyped for 27 microsatellite loci and compared with 11 Portuguese autochthonous and three imported breeds. Genetic distances and factorial correspondence analyses (FCA were performed to investigate the relationship among Algarvia and related breeds. Assignment tests were done to identify representative individuals of the breed. Y chromosome and mtDNA analyses were used to further characterize Algarvia animals. Gene- and allelic-based conservation analyses were used to determine breed contributions to overall genetic diversity. Results Genetic distance and FCA results confirmed the close relationship between Algarvia and southern Portuguese breeds. Assignment tests without breed information classified 17 Algarvia animals in this cluster with a high probability (q > 0.95. With breed information, 30 cows and three bulls were identified (q > 0.95 that could be used to reconstitute the Algarvia breed. Molecular and morphological results were concordant. These animals showed intermediate levels of genetic diversity (MNA = 6.0 ± 1.6, Rt = 5.7 ± 1.4, Ho = 0.63 ± 0.19 and He = 0.69 ± 0.10 relative to other Portuguese breeds. Evidence of inbreeding was also detected (Fis = 0.083, P st = 0.028, P > 0.05. Algarvia cattle provide an intermediate contribution (CB = 6.18, CW = -0.06 and D1 = 0.50 to the overall gene diversity of Portuguese cattle. Algarvia and seven other autochthonous breeds made no contribution to the overall allelic diversity. Conclusions Molecular analyses complemented previous morphological findings to identify 33 animals that

  12. Breed incidence of lymphoma in a UK population of insured dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, D S; Henley, W E; Harding, E F; Dobson, J M; Wood, J L N

    2003-12-01

    Canine lymphoma is one of the commonest forms of spontaneous canine neoplasia. Improved understanding of the genetic and environmental risk factors for canine lymphoma, including breed differences, may have comparative benefits for the study of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in humans. In this study, data from a pet insurance company were used to estimate the incidences of canine lymphoma for pedigree breeds in the UK. Out of a total of 130,684 insured dogs, 103 had a diagnosis of lymphoma recorded. A significant breed effect was found with the boxer, bulldog and bull mastiff breeds, all having a high incidence of lymphoma. The small number of lymphoma cases recorded may have limited our ability to detect other breeds with an elevated risk. Incidence of lymphoma was found to increase with age, peaking at 10 years of age. PMID:19379181

  13. Study on genetic variability in MHC-DRB1 second exon in Makuie sheep breed population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashrafi Fereshteh

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In the present study polymorphism of the exon 2 of MHC (Major Histocompatibility Complex gene in Makuie sheep breed was studied. Genomic DNA from blood samples of 90 sheep was extracted and a 279 bp MHC exon 2 fragment was amplified using polymerase chain reaction (PCR. PCR products were subjected to enzymatic digestion using RsaI endonuclease. Digested PCR products were electrophoresed on 2% agarose gel. The results showed the existence of 10 alleles: A, B, E, F, I, M, O, P, Q and V for the exon 2 of the MHC gene, with the frequencies of 0.4756, 0.0976, 0.0183, 0.0366, 0.0549, 0.0122, 0.1098, 0.0915, 0.0854 and 0.0183, respectively. Eighteen genotypes: AA, AB, AE, FF, AM, BO, EO, IO, OM, AP, BP, OP, PP, AQ, OQ, PQ, QQ and AV with the frequencies of 0.317, 0.1585, 0.0121, 0.0365, 0.0121, 0.0243, 0.0243, 0.1097, 0.0121, 0.0487, 0.0121, 0.0365, 0.0365, 0.0487, 0.0121, 0.0121, 0.0487 and 0.0365, respectively were identified in the population under study. Effective number of alleles and heterozygosity for the examined region were 3.7231 and 0.7314, respectively. Chi-square test showed that the examined sheep population was not in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium in the examined region.

  14. Unravelling the annual cycle in a migratory animal: breeding-season habitat loss drives population declines of monarch butterflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flockhart, D T Tyler; Pichancourt, Jean-Baptiste; Norris, D Ryan; Martin, Tara G

    2015-01-01

    Threats to migratory animals can occur at multiple periods of the annual cycle that are separated by thousands of kilometres and span international borders. Populations of the iconic monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) of eastern North America have declined over the last 21 years. Three hypotheses have been posed to explain the decline: habitat loss on the overwintering grounds in Mexico, habitat loss on the breeding grounds in the United States and Canada, and extreme weather events. Our objectives were to assess population viability, determine which life stage, season and geographical region are contributing the most to population dynamics and test the three hypotheses that explain the observed population decline. We developed a spatially structured, stochastic and density-dependent periodic projection matrix model that integrates patterns of migratory connectivity and demographic vital rates across the annual cycle. We used perturbation analysis to determine the sensitivity of population abundance to changes in vital rate among life stages, seasons and geographical regions. Next, we compared the singular effects of each threat to the full model where all factors operate concurrently. Finally, we generated predictions to assess the risk of host plant loss as a result of genetically modified crops on current and future monarch butterfly population size and extinction probability. Our year-round population model predicted population declines of 14% and a quasi-extinction probability (5% within a century. Monarch abundance was more than four times more sensitive to perturbations of vital rates on the breeding grounds than on the wintering grounds. Simulations that considered only forest loss or climate change in Mexico predicted higher population sizes compared to milkweed declines on the breeding grounds. Our model predictions also suggest that mitigating the negative effects of genetically modified crops results in higher population size and lower extinction

  15. Unravelling the annual cycle in a migratory animal: breeding-season habitat loss drives population declines of monarch butterflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flockhart, D T Tyler; Pichancourt, Jean-Baptiste; Norris, D Ryan; Martin, Tara G

    2015-01-01

    Threats to migratory animals can occur at multiple periods of the annual cycle that are separated by thousands of kilometres and span international borders. Populations of the iconic monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) of eastern North America have declined over the last 21 years. Three hypotheses have been posed to explain the decline: habitat loss on the overwintering grounds in Mexico, habitat loss on the breeding grounds in the United States and Canada, and extreme weather events. Our objectives were to assess population viability, determine which life stage, season and geographical region are contributing the most to population dynamics and test the three hypotheses that explain the observed population decline. We developed a spatially structured, stochastic and density-dependent periodic projection matrix model that integrates patterns of migratory connectivity and demographic vital rates across the annual cycle. We used perturbation analysis to determine the sensitivity of population abundance to changes in vital rate among life stages, seasons and geographical regions. Next, we compared the singular effects of each threat to the full model where all factors operate concurrently. Finally, we generated predictions to assess the risk of host plant loss as a result of genetically modified crops on current and future monarch butterfly population size and extinction probability. Our year-round population model predicted population declines of 14% and a quasi-extinction probability (5% within a century. Monarch abundance was more than four times more sensitive to perturbations of vital rates on the breeding grounds than on the wintering grounds. Simulations that considered only forest loss or climate change in Mexico predicted higher population sizes compared to milkweed declines on the breeding grounds. Our model predictions also suggest that mitigating the negative effects of genetically modified crops results in higher population size and lower extinction

  16. Inference about species richness and community structure using species-specific occupancy models in the National Swiss Breeding Bird Survey MUB

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kery, M.; Royle, J. Andrew; Thomson, David L.; Cooch, Evan G.; Conroy, Michael J.

    2009-01-01

    Species richness is the most widely used biodiversity measure. Virtually always, it cannot be observed but needs to be estimated because some species may be present but remain undetected. This fact is commonly ignored in ecology and management, although it will bias estimates of species richness and related parameters such as occupancy, turnover or extinction rates. We describe a species community modeling strategy based on species-specific models of occurrence, from which estimates of important summaries of community structure, e.g., species richness, occupancy, or measures of similarity among species or sites, are derived by aggregating indicators of occurrence for all species observed in the sample, and for the estimated complement of unobserved species. We use data augmentation for an efficient Bayesian approach to estimation and prediction under this model based on MCMC in WinBUGS. For illustration, we use the Swiss breeding bird survey (MHB) that conducts 2?3 territory-mapping surveys in a systematic sample of 267 1 km2 units on quadrat-specific routes averaging 5.1 km to obtain species-specific estimates of occupancy, and estimates of species richness of all diurnal species free of distorting effects of imperfect detectability. We introduce into our model species-specific covariates relevant to occupancy (elevation, forest cover, route length) and sampling (season, effort). From 1995 to 2004, 185 diurnal breeding bird species were known in Switzerland, and an additional 13 bred 1?3 times since 1900. 134 species were observed during MHB surveys in 254 quadrats surveyed in 2001, and our estimate of 169.9 (95% CI 151?195) therefore appeared sensible. The observed number of species ranged from 4 to 58 (mean 32.8), but with an estimated 0.7?11.2 (mean 2.6) further, unobserved species, the estimated proportion of detected species was 0.48?0.98 (mean 0.91). As is well known, species richness declined at higher elevation and fell above the timberline, and most

  17. Integrating paleoecology and genetics of bird populations in two sky island archipelagos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bowen Bonnie S

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Genetic tests of paleoecological hypotheses have been rare, partly because recent genetic divergence is difficult to detect and time. According to fossil plant data, continuous woodland in the southwestern USA and northern Mexico became fragmented during the last 10,000 years, as warming caused cool-adapted species to retreat to high elevations. Most genetic studies of resulting 'sky islands' have either failed to detect recent divergence or have found discordant evidence for ancient divergence. We test this paleoecological hypothesis for the region with intraspecific mitochondrial DNA and microsatellite data from sky-island populations of a sedentary bird, the Mexican jay (Aphelocoma ultramarina. We predicted that populations on different sky islands would share common, ancestral alleles that existed during the last glaciation, but that populations on each sky island, owing to their isolation, would contain unique variants of postglacial origin. We also predicted that divergence times estimated from corrected genetic distance and a coalescence model would post-date the last glacial maximum. Results Our results provide multiple independent lines of support for postglacial divergence, with the predicted pattern of shared and unique mitochondrial DNA haplotypes appearing in two independent sky-island archipelagos, and most estimates of divergence time based on corrected genetic distance post-dating the last glacial maximum. Likewise, an isolation model based on multilocus gene coalescence indicated postglacial divergence of five pairs of sky islands. In contrast to their similar recent histories, the two archipelagos had dissimilar historical patterns in that sky islands in Arizona showed evidence for older divergence, suggesting different responses to the last glaciation. Conclusion This study is one of the first to provide explicit support from genetic data for a postglacial divergence scenario predicted by one of the best

  18. Genome-wide association mapping for yield and other agronomic traits in an elite breeding population of tropical rice (Oryza sativa).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Begum, Hasina; Spindel, Jennifer E; Lalusin, Antonio; Borromeo, Teresita; Gregorio, Glenn; Hernandez, Jose; Virk, Parminder; Collard, Bertrand; McCouch, Susan R

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association mapping studies (GWAS) are frequently used to detect QTL in diverse collections of crop germplasm, based on historic recombination events and linkage disequilibrium across the genome. Generally, diversity panels genotyped with high density SNP panels are utilized in order to assay a wide range of alleles and haplotypes and to monitor recombination breakpoints across the genome. By contrast, GWAS have not generally been performed in breeding populations. In this study we performed association mapping for 19 agronomic traits including yield and yield components in a breeding population of elite irrigated tropical rice breeding lines so that the results would be more directly applicable to breeding than those from a diversity panel. The population was genotyped with 71,710 SNPs using genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS), and GWAS performed with the explicit goal of expediting selection in the breeding program. Using this breeding panel we identified 52 QTL for 11 agronomic traits, including large effect QTLs for flowering time and grain length/grain width/grain-length-breadth ratio. We also identified haplotypes that can be used to select plants in our population for short stature (plant height), early flowering time, and high yield, and thus demonstrate the utility of association mapping in breeding populations for informing breeding decisions. We conclude by exploring how the newly identified significant SNPs and insights into the genetic architecture of these quantitative traits can be leveraged to build genomic-assisted selection models.

  19. The phenology of a rare salamander (Salamandra infraimmaculata in a population breeding under unpredictable ambient conditions: a 25 year study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael R. Warburg

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available This is a long-term study (1974-1999 on the phenology of the rare, xeric- inhabiting salamander Salamandra infraimmaculata in a small isolated population during the breeding season near the breeding ponds on Mt. Carmel. This is a fringe area of the genus’ south-easternmost Palaearctic distribution. Salamanders were captured during the 25 year long study. The first years up to the 1980s the total number of salamanders increased but during the last years there seems to have been a decline. Although this could be a phase in normal population cyclic oscillations nevertheless when compared with long-term data on a European Salamandra it does not seem so. The interpretation of the species’ status is dependent on numbers of salamanders captured as well as on the duration of the study. These subjects are reviewed and discussed in this paper.

  20. The importance of livestock factory farms for number of synanthropic birds

    OpenAIRE

    Vršecká, Anna

    2013-01-01

    Since the amount of operating factory farms in the country and in homesteads with livestock breeding has been on the decrease in the recent years, there has been a decline in suburban bird populations. In the nesting season of the year 2012, estimation has been carried out of the population sizes of the following ten bird species: house sparrow (Passer domesticus), tree sparrow (Passer montanus), collared dove (Streptopelia decaocto), black redstart (Phoenicurus ochruros), white wagtail (Mota...

  1. The use of data and knowledge about bird numbers and population demography for the conservation and management of migratory birds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fox, Anthony David

    2011-01-01

    Flyway level assessment of changes in abundance is essential to assess the effectiveness of conservation and management. Additional data on demographic rates (reproduction and survival) is needed to underpin the causes of changes. Data on immigration or emigration are helpful but more difficult t...... to obtain. There should be more attention to the effects of hunting on population sizes. Much can be achieved if citizen science (counters are almost all volunteers!) is well organised but on the basis of good professional leadership to get the maximum out of it.......Flyway level assessment of changes in abundance is essential to assess the effectiveness of conservation and management. Additional data on demographic rates (reproduction and survival) is needed to underpin the causes of changes. Data on immigration or emigration are helpful but more difficult...

  2. Scrapie prevalence in sheep of susceptible genotype is declining in a population subject to breeding for resistance

    OpenAIRE

    Engel Bas; Davidse Aart; Bossers Alex; Melchior Marielle B; Hagenaars Thomas J; van Zijderveld Fred G

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background Susceptibility of sheep to scrapie infection is known to be modulated by the PrP genotype of the animal. In the Netherlands an ambitious scrapie control programme was started in 1998, based on genetic selection of animals for breeding. From 2002 onwards EU regulations required intensive active scrapie surveillance as well as certain control measures in affected flocks. Here we analyze the data on genotype frequencies and scrapie prevalence in the Dutch sheep population obt...

  3. Breed effects and genetic parameter estimates for calving difficulty and birth weight in a multibreed population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahlberg, C M; Kuehn, L A; Thallman, R M; Kachman, S D; Snelling, W M; Spangler, M L

    2016-05-01

    Birth weight (BWT) and calving difficulty (CD) were recorded on 4,579 first-parity females from the Germplasm Evaluation Program at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC). Both traits were analyzed using a bivariate animal model with direct and maternal effects. Calving difficulty was transformed from the USMARC scores to corresponding -scores from the standard normal distribution based on the incidence rate of the USMARC scores. Breed fraction covariates were included to estimate breed differences. Heritability estimates (SE) for BWT direct, CD direct, BWT maternal, and CD maternal were 0.34 (0.10), 0.29 (0.10), 0.15 (0.08), and 0.13 (0.08), respectively. Calving difficulty direct breed effects deviated from Angus ranged from -0.13 to 0.77 and maternal breed effects deviated from Angus ranged from -0.27 to 0.36. Hereford-, Angus-, Gelbvieh-, and Brangus-sired calves would be the least likely to require assistance at birth, whereas Chiangus-, Charolais-, and Limousin-sired calves would be the most likely to require assistance at birth. Maternal breed effects for CD were least for Simmental and Charolais and greatest for Red Angus and Chiangus. Results showed that the diverse biological types of cattle have different effects on both BWT and CD. Furthermore, results provide a mechanism whereby beef cattle producers can compare EBV for CD direct and maternal arising from disjoined and breed-specific genetic evaluations. PMID:27285683

  4. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations for growth traits in both sexes of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1991-08-01

    Heterosis effects for birth weight, ADG from birth to weaning, 200-d weight, ADG from weaning to 368 d, 368-d weight, 368-d height, 368-d condition score, and 368-d muscling score (males only) were evaluated separately for each sex in F1, F2, and combined F3 and F4 generations in three composite beef cattle populations. Breed effects were evaluated for the nine parental breeds (i.e., Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 C, 1/4 B, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Breed effects were significant for all traits evaluated. The large differences among breeds for growth and size traits in combined additive direct and additive maternal genetic effects (Gi + Gm) provide an opportunity to use genetic differences among breeds to achieve and maintain optimum additive genetic (breed) composition for growth and size traits to match cattle genetic resources to a wide range of production and marketing situations. Combined individual and maternal heterosis was significant in the F1, F2, and combined F3 and F4 generations for each composite population and for the mean of the three composite populations in both sexes for most of the traits evaluated. In both sexes, heterosis retained in combined F3 and F4 generations was greater (P less than .05) than expected based on retained heterozygosity for birth weight, ADG from weaning to 368 d, and for 368-d weight and did not differ (P greater than .05) from expectation for other traits. These results support the hypothesis that heterosis in cattle for traits related to growth and size is due to dominance effects of genes.

  5. Public support for conserving bird species runs counter to climate change impacts on their distributions

    OpenAIRE

    Thomas Hedemark Lundhede; Jette Bredahl Jacobsen; Nick Hanley; Jon Fjeldså; Carsten Rahbek; Niels Strange; Bo Jellesmark Thorsen

    2014-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that global climate change will alter the spatiotemporal occurrences and abundances of many species at continental scales. This will have implications for efficient conservation of biodiversity. We investigate if the general public in Denmark are willing to pay for the preservation of birds potentially immigrating and establishing breeding populations due to climate change to the same extent that they are for native species populations currently breeding in Denmar...

  6. Effects of breeding versus winter habitat loss and fragmentation on the population dynamics of a migratory songbird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Caz M; Stutchbury, Bridget J M

    2016-03-01

    Many migratory species are in decline and understanding these declines is challenging because individuals occupy widely divergent and geographically distant habitats during a single year and therefore populations across the range are interconnected in complex ways. Network modeling has been used to show, theoretically, that shifts in migratory connectivity patterns can occur in response to habitat or climate changes and that habitat loss in one region can affect sub-populations in regions that are not directly connected. Here, we use a network model, parameterized by integrating long-term monitoring data with direct tracking of -100 individuals, to explain population trends in the rapidly declining Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) and to predict future trends. Our model suggests that species-level declines in Wood Thrush are driven primarily by tropical deforestation in Central America but that protection of breeding habitat in some regions is necessary to prevent shifts in migratory connectivity and to sustain populations in all breeding regions. The model illustrates how shifts in migratory connectivity may lead to unexpected population declines in key regions. We highlight current knowledge gaps that make modeling full life-cycle population demographics in migratory species challenging but also demonstrate that modeling can inform conservation while these gaps are being filled.

  7. Effect of predictor traits on accuracy of genomic breeding values for feed intake based on a limited cow reference population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pszczola, M; Veerkamp, R F; de Haas, Y; Wall, E; Strabel, T; Calus, M P L

    2013-11-01

    pedigree, and 0.63 for CV and 0.61 for PEV in genomic analyses). Recording predictor traits for only the reference population did not increase DMI breeding value accuracy. Recording predictor traits for both reference and evaluated animals significantly increased DMI breeding value accuracy and removed the bias observed when only reference animals had records. The benefit of using genomic instead of pedigree relationships was reduced when more predictor traits were used. Using predictor traits may be an inexpensive way to significantly increase the accuracy and remove the bias of (genomic) breeding values of scarcely recorded traits such as feed intake.

  8. Effects of land use on bird populations and pest control services on coffee farms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Railsback, Steven F; Johnson, Matthew D

    2014-04-22

    Global increases in both agriculture and biodiversity awareness raise a key question: Should cropland and biodiversity habitat be separated, or integrated in mixed land uses? Ecosystem services by wildlife make this question more complex. For example, birds benefit agriculture by preying on pest insects, but other habitat is needed to maintain the birds. Resulting land use questions include what areas and arrangements of habitat support sufficient birds to control pests, whether this pest control offsets the reduced cropland, and the comparative benefits of "land sharing" (i.e., mixed cropland and habitat) vs. "land sparing" (i.e., separate areas of intensive agriculture and habitat). Such questions are difficult to answer using field studies alone, so we use a simulation model of Jamaican coffee farms, where songbirds suppress the coffee berry borer (CBB). Simulated birds select habitat and prey in five habitat types: intact forest, trees (including forest fragments), shade coffee, sun coffee, and unsuitable habitat. The trees habitat type appears to be especially important, providing efficient foraging and roosting sites near coffee plots. Small areas of trees (but not forest alone) could support a sufficient number of birds to suppress CBB in sun coffee; the degree to which trees are dispersed within coffee had little effect. In simulations without trees, shade coffee supported sufficient birds to offset its lower yield. High areas of both trees and shade coffee reduced pest control because CBB was less often profitable prey. Because of the pest control service provided by birds, land sharing was predicted to be more beneficial than land sparing in this system.

  9. Effects of land use on bird populations and pest control services on coffee farms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Railsback, Steven F.; Johnson, Matthew D.

    2014-01-01

    Global increases in both agriculture and biodiversity awareness raise a key question: Should cropland and biodiversity habitat be separated, or integrated in mixed land uses? Ecosystem services by wildlife make this question more complex. For example, birds benefit agriculture by preying on pest insects, but other habitat is needed to maintain the birds. Resulting land use questions include what areas and arrangements of habitat support sufficient birds to control pests, whether this pest control offsets the reduced cropland, and the comparative benefits of “land sharing” (i.e., mixed cropland and habitat) vs. “land sparing” (i.e., separate areas of intensive agriculture and habitat). Such questions are difficult to answer using field studies alone, so we use a simulation model of Jamaican coffee farms, where songbirds suppress the coffee berry borer (CBB). Simulated birds select habitat and prey in five habitat types: intact forest, trees (including forest fragments), shade coffee, sun coffee, and unsuitable habitat. The trees habitat type appears to be especially important, providing efficient foraging and roosting sites near coffee plots. Small areas of trees (but not forest alone) could support a sufficient number of birds to suppress CBB in sun coffee; the degree to which trees are dispersed within coffee had little effect. In simulations without trees, shade coffee supported sufficient birds to offset its lower yield. High areas of both trees and shade coffee reduced pest control because CBB was less often profitable prey. Because of the pest control service provided by birds, land sharing was predicted to be more beneficial than land sparing in this system. PMID:24711377

  10. Effects of land use on bird populations and pest control services on coffee farms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Railsback, Steven F; Johnson, Matthew D

    2014-04-22

    Global increases in both agriculture and biodiversity awareness raise a key question: Should cropland and biodiversity habitat be separated, or integrated in mixed land uses? Ecosystem services by wildlife make this question more complex. For example, birds benefit agriculture by preying on pest insects, but other habitat is needed to maintain the birds. Resulting land use questions include what areas and arrangements of habitat support sufficient birds to control pests, whether this pest control offsets the reduced cropland, and the comparative benefits of "land sharing" (i.e., mixed cropland and habitat) vs. "land sparing" (i.e., separate areas of intensive agriculture and habitat). Such questions are difficult to answer using field studies alone, so we use a simulation model of Jamaican coffee farms, where songbirds suppress the coffee berry borer (CBB). Simulated birds select habitat and prey in five habitat types: intact forest, trees (including forest fragments), shade coffee, sun coffee, and unsuitable habitat. The trees habitat type appears to be especially important, providing efficient foraging and roosting sites near coffee plots. Small areas of trees (but not forest alone) could support a sufficient number of birds to suppress CBB in sun coffee; the degree to which trees are dispersed within coffee had little effect. In simulations without trees, shade coffee supported sufficient birds to offset its lower yield. High areas of both trees and shade coffee reduced pest control because CBB was less often profitable prey. Because of the pest control service provided by birds, land sharing was predicted to be more beneficial than land sparing in this system. PMID:24711377

  11. Spatial genetic structure of Long-tailed Ducks (Clangula hyemalis) among Alaskan, Canadian, and Russian breeding populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Robert E.; Gust, J R; Petersen, Margaret; Talbot, Sandra

    2016-01-01

    Arctic ecosystems are changing at an unprecedented rate. How Arctic species are able to respond to such environmental change is partially dependent on the connections between local and broadly distributed populations. For species like the Long-tailed Duck (Clangula hyemalis), we have limited telemetry and band-recovery information from which to infer population structure and migratory connectivity; however, genetic analyses can offer additional insights. To examine population structure in the Long-tailed Duck, we characterized variation at mtDNA control region and microsatellite loci among four breeding areas in Alaska, Canada, and Russia. We observed significant differences in the variance of mtDNA haplotype frequencies between the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta (YKD) and the three Arctic locations (Arctic Coastal Plain in Alaska, eastern Siberia, and central Canadian Arctic). However, like most sea duck genetic assessments, our study found no evidence of population structure based on autosomal microsatellite loci. Long-tailed Ducks use multiple wintering areas where pair formation occurs with some populations using both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. This situation provides a greater opportunity for admixture across breeding locales, which would likely homogenize the nuclear genome even in the presence of female philopatry. The observed mtDNA differentiation was largely due to the presence of two divergent clades: (A) a clade showing signs of admixture among all breeding locales and (B) a clade primarily composed of YKD samples. We hypothesize that the pattern of mtDNA differentiation reflects some degree of philopatry to the YKD and isolation of two refugial populations with subsequent expansion and admixture. We recommend additional genetic assessments throughout the circumpolar range of Long-tailed Ducks to further quantify aspects of genetic diversity and migratory connectivity in this species.

  12. Current land bird distribution and trends in population abundance between 1982 and 2012 on Rota, Mariana Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camp, Richard J.; Brinck, Kevin W.; Gorresen, P. Marcos; Amidon, Fred A.; Radley, Paul M.; Berkowitz, S. Paul; Banko, Paul C.

    2015-01-01

    The western Pacific island of Rota is the fourth largest human-inhabited island in the Mariana archipelago and designated an Endemic Bird Area. Between 1982 and 2012, 12 point-transect distance-sampling surveys were conducted to assess bird population status. Surveys did not consistently sample the entire island; thus, we used a ratio estimator to estimate bird abundances in strata not sampled during every survey. Trends in population size were reliably estimated for 11 of 13 bird species, and 7 species declined over the 30-y time series, including the island collared-dove Streptopelia bitorquata, white-throated ground-dove Gallicolumba xanthonura, Mariana fruit-dove Ptilinopus roseicapilla, collared kingfisher Todiramphus chloris orii, Micronesian myzomela Myzomela rubratra, black drongo Dicrurus macrocercus, and Mariana crow Corvus kubaryi. The endangered Mariana crow (x̄  =  81 birds, 95% CI 30–202) declined sharply to fewer than 200 individuals in 2012, down from 1,491 birds in 1982 (95% CI  =  815–3,115). Trends increased for white tern Gygis alba, rufous fantail Rhipidura rufifrons mariae, and Micronesian starling Aplonis opaca. Numbers of the endangered Rota white-eye Zosterops rotensis declined from 1982 to the late 1990s but returned to 1980s levels by 2012, resulting in an overall stable trend. Trends for the yellow bittern Ixobrychus sinensis were inconclusive. Eurasian tree sparrow Passer montanus trends were not assessed; however, their numbers in 1982 and 2012 were similar. Occupancy models of the 2012 survey data revealed general patterns of land cover use and detectability among 12 species that could be reliably modeled. Occupancy was not assessed for the Eurasian tree sparrow because of insufficient detections. Based on the 2012 survey, bird distribution and abundance across Rota revealed three general patterns: 1) range restriction, including Mariana crow, Rota white-eye, and Eurasian tree sparrow; 2) widespread distribution, low

  13. Breed effects and retained heterosis for growth, carcass, and meat traits in advanced generations of composite populations of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M; Dikeman, M E; Koohmaraie, M

    1994-04-01

    Retained heterosis for growth, carcass, and meat traits was estimated in F3 generation castrate male progeny in three composite populations finished on two levels of dietary energy density (2.82 Mcal of ME and 3.07 Mcal of ME and 11.50% CP) and serially slaughtered at four end points at intervals of 20 to 22 d. Breed effects were evaluated in nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C] that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 B, 1/4 C, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, and 1/4 A). Breed effects were important (P .05) from Limousin in retail product weight or carcass lean weight because of higher dressing percentage, lower fat trim percentage, and lower bone percentage of Limousin. The effects of dietary energy density were important (P < .01) for most traits. The interaction of breed group x dietary energy density generally was not important. Retained heterosis generally was significant for each composite population for weight of retail product, fat trim, bone, and carcass lean, fat, and bone. For percentage of retail product, fat trim, carcass lean, carcass fat, and chemical fat in the 9-10-11th rib cut, generally, heterosis was significant for composites MARC II and MARC III but not for composite MARC I (i.e., composites MARC II and MARC III had a lower percentage of retail product and carcass lean and a higher percentage of fat trim, carcass fat, and chemical fat in the 9-10-11th rib cut than the mean of contributing purebreds).

  14. Public support for conserving bird species runs counter to climate change impacts on their distributions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundhede, Thomas; Jacobsen, Jette Bredahl; Hanley, Nick;

    2014-01-01

    preservation of birds potentially immigrating and establishing breeding populations due to climate change to the same extent that they are for native species populations currently breeding in Denmark, but potentially emigrating due to climate change. We find that Danish citizens are willing to pay much more...... for the conservation of birds currently native to Denmark, than for bird species moving into the country – even when they are informed about the potential range shifts associated with climate change. The only exception is when immigrating species populations are under pressure at European level....... Furthermore, people believing climate change to be man-made and people more knowledgeable about birds tended to have higher WTP for conservation of native species, relative to other people, whereas their preferences for conserving immigrant species generally resembled those of other people. Conservation...

  15. Dahomey Breeding Bird Survey Route

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Document contains route directions and map for the naitonal Dahomey BBS route. Includes milage for where specific listening stations are located along the route...

  16. Winter population trends of selected songbirds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Root, T.L.; McDaniel, Larry

    1995-01-01

    Many studies have found significant changes, primarily declines, in populations of breeding birds throughout the United States. Most studies have focused on birds that migrate to the Neotropics for winter. Speculations about causes of observed declines have primarily implicated habitat fragmentation and loss (e.g. deforestation) in Central and South America. The National Audubon Society's Christmas Bird Counts (CBC), begun in the winter of 1900-01, provide the data needed to discern consistent population trends in birds wintering throughout the United States.

  17. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations for puberty and scrotal traits of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Lunstra, D D; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1991-07-01

    Heterosis effects were evaluated in F1, F2, and F3 generations of females and in the F1, F2, and combined F3 and F4 generations of males in three composite populations of beef cattle. Traits included weight, height, and condition scores at different ages, percentage of females reaching puberty at 368, 410, and 452 d, adjusted age, and adjusted weight of females at puberty and scrotal circumference and paired testicular volume of males. Breed effects were evaluated for the nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 C, 1/4 B, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Breed effects were significant for all traits evaluated. Heterosis was significant for weight, height, and condition score at all ages and for most measures of puberty in each generation of each composite and for the mean of the three composite populations. Heterosis for age at puberty was largely independent of heterosis effects on 368-d weight. Heterosis was significant for scrotal circumference and paired testicular volume in each generation of each composite and for the mean of the three composite populations. Heterosis effects on scrotal measurements are mediated both through heterosis effects on growth rate and through factors that are independent of growth rate. Correlation coefficients among breed group means and correlations of breed rank for scrotal measurements with puberty traits of females were greater than or equal to .88 (P less than .01) for all puberty traits except weight at puberty, which was not associated with scrotal measurements. There was close agreement in heterosis observed for most traits and expectation based on retained heterozygosity. These results support the hypothesis that heterosis in cattle for size, puberty, and scrotal measurement

  18. Genomic inbreeding estimation in small populations: evaluation of runs of homozygosity in three local dairy cattle breeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mastrangelo, S; Tolone, M; Di Gerlando, R; Fontanesi, L; Sardina, M T; Portolano, B

    2016-05-01

    In the local breeds with small population size, one of the most important problems is the increase of inbreeding coefficient (F). High levels of inbreeding lead to reduced genetic diversity and inbreeding depression. The availability of high-density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) arrays has facilitated the quantification of F by genomic markers in farm animals. Runs of homozygosity (ROH) are contiguous lengths of homozygous genotypes and represent an estimate of the degree of autozygosity at genome-wide level. The current study aims to quantify the genomic F derived from ROH (F ROH) in three local dairy cattle breeds. F ROH values were compared with F estimated from the genomic relationship matrix (F GRM), based on the difference between observed v. expected number of homozygous genotypes (F HOM) and the genomic homozygosity of individual i (F MOL i ). The molecular coancestry coefficient (f MOL ij ) between individuals i and j was also estimated. Individuals of Cinisara (71), Modicana (72) and Reggiana (168) were genotyped with the 50K v2 Illumina BeadChip. Genotypes from 96 animals of Italian Holstein cattle breed were also included in the analysis. We used a definition of ROH as tracts of homozygous genotypes that were >4 Mb. Among breeds, 3661 ROH were identified. Modicana showed the highest mean number of ROH per individual and the highest value of F ROH, whereas Reggiana showed the lowest ones. Differences among breeds existed for the ROH lengths. The individuals of Italian Holstein showed high number of short ROH segments, related to ancient consanguinity. Similar results showed the Reggiana with some extreme animals with segments covering 400 Mb and more of genome. Modicana and Cinisara showed similar results between them with the total length of ROH characterized by the presence of large segments. High correlation was found between F HOM and F ROH ranged from 0.83 in Reggiana to 0.95 in Cinisara and Modicana. The correlations among F ROH and other

  19. Open-nucleus breeding strategies compared with population-wide positive assortative mating: I. Equal distribution of testing efforts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lstibůrek, M; Mullin, T J; Lindgren, D; Rosvall, O

    2004-10-01

    Positive assortative mating (PAM) can enhance the additive genetic variance in a breeding population(BP). This increases the potential for gains in the production population (PP, selected subset of the BP) for recurrent selection programs in forest trees. The assortment of mates can be either: (1) by individual tree rank across the whole BP (PAM), or (2) trees of similar rank can be merged into larger hierarchical groups and then mated randomly within group ("open"-nucleus breeding,NB). The objective of this study was to compare PAM and NB in quantitative terms. The NB simulation model assumed two tiers (nucleus, main) with unrestricted migration between the tiers. Clonal tests were used to predict breeding values and test resources per mate were kept constant for all mates. Both gain and diversity were combined into a single selection criterion, "group-merit selection." Alternatives were compared over five breeding cycles by considering genetic gain and diversity in a selected PP established in a seed orchard. The assortment of mates in both alternatives enhanced additive variance and increased the additive effect in the BP, leading to additional gain in the PP. Gains generated under PAM always exceeded gains under NB. Thus, the main message from this study is that PAM in both the short- and long-term results in more gain at any target level of diversity in the PP (the breeder's target) than is achieved by the NB alternative. The optimum size of the nucleus varies with the desired level of seed orchard diversity. At lower target diversity, smaller nucleus sizes are favorable, while larger sizes result in more gain when seed orchard diversity is considered more important.

  20. Optimizing the creation of base populations for aquaculture breeding programs using phenotypic and genomic data and its consequences on genetic progress

    OpenAIRE

    Fernández, Jesús; Toro, Miguel Á.; Sonesson, Anna K.; Villanueva, Beatriz

    2014-01-01

    The success of an aquaculture breeding program critically depends on the way in which the base population of breeders is constructed since all the genetic variability for the traits included originally in the breeding goal as well as those to be included in the future is contained in the initial founders. Traditionally, base populations were created from a number of wild strains by sampling equal numbers from each strain. However, for some aquaculture species improved strains are already avai...

  1. MULTIDRUG RESISTANCE IN WILD BIRD POPULATIONS: IMPORTANCE OF THE FOOD CHAIN.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Andreia; Simões, Romeo; Oliveira, Manuela; Vaz-Pires, Paulo; Brandão, Ricardo; da Costa, Paulo Martins

    2015-12-01

    The presence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) Escherichia coli has recently been reported in wild birds (gulls and birds of prey) that had no apparent exposure to antimicrobials. Little work has been done to assess the role of the food chain in the emergence and spread of MDR E. coli . In this study, we evaluated the presence of MDR E. coli in 29 fecal samples collected from wild birds living in a rehabilitation center (the center receives injured animals found in their natural habitat) and in eight feed samples. In total, 166 E. coli isolates were obtained: 129 from cloacal swabs and 37 from raw feed samples. The antimicrobial resistance profile of these isolates was determined, and we found that 75 isolates showed resistance to five or more drugs, resulting in a total of 38 different antimicrobial resistance patterns. Subsequently, the molecular characterization of 36 isolates, performed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, revealed a great similarity between isolates collected from various species of birds and also between these last ones and the ones found in their feed samples. PMID:26667528

  2. Bird communities and biomass yields in potential bioenergy grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blank, Peter J; Sample, David W; Williams, Carol L; Turner, Monica G

    2014-01-01

    Demand for bioenergy is increasing, but the ecological consequences of bioenergy crop production on working lands remain unresolved. Corn is currently a dominant bioenergy crop, but perennial grasslands could produce renewable bioenergy resources and enhance biodiversity. Grassland bird populations have declined in recent decades and may particularly benefit from perennial grasslands grown for bioenergy. We asked how breeding bird community assemblages, vegetation characteristics, and biomass yields varied among three types of potential bioenergy grassland fields (grass monocultures, grass-dominated fields, and forb-dominated fields), and assessed tradeoffs between grassland biomass production and bird habitat. We also compared the bird communities in grassland fields to nearby cornfields. Cornfields had few birds compared to perennial grassland fields. Ten bird Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) were observed in perennial grassland fields. Bird species richness and total bird density increased with forb cover and were greater in forb-dominated fields than grass monocultures. SGCN density declined with increasing vertical vegetation density, indicating that tall, dense grassland fields managed for maximum biomass yield would be of lesser value to imperiled grassland bird species. The proportion of grassland habitat within 1 km of study sites was positively associated with bird species richness and the density of total birds and SGCNs, suggesting that grassland bioenergy fields may be more beneficial for grassland birds if they are established near other grassland parcels. Predicted total bird density peaked below maximum biomass yields and predicted SGCN density was negatively related to biomass yields. Our results indicate that perennial grassland fields could produce bioenergy feedstocks while providing bird habitat. Bioenergy grasslands promote agricultural multifunctionality and conservation of biodiversity in working landscapes.

  3. Bird communities and biomass yields in potential bioenergy grasslands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J Blank

    Full Text Available Demand for bioenergy is increasing, but the ecological consequences of bioenergy crop production on working lands remain unresolved. Corn is currently a dominant bioenergy crop, but perennial grasslands could produce renewable bioenergy resources and enhance biodiversity. Grassland bird populations have declined in recent decades and may particularly benefit from perennial grasslands grown for bioenergy. We asked how breeding bird community assemblages, vegetation characteristics, and biomass yields varied among three types of potential bioenergy grassland fields (grass monocultures, grass-dominated fields, and forb-dominated fields, and assessed tradeoffs between grassland biomass production and bird habitat. We also compared the bird communities in grassland fields to nearby cornfields. Cornfields had few birds compared to perennial grassland fields. Ten bird Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN were observed in perennial grassland fields. Bird species richness and total bird density increased with forb cover and were greater in forb-dominated fields than grass monocultures. SGCN density declined with increasing vertical vegetation density, indicating that tall, dense grassland fields managed for maximum biomass yield would be of lesser value to imperiled grassland bird species. The proportion of grassland habitat within 1 km of study sites was positively associated with bird species richness and the density of total birds and SGCNs, suggesting that grassland bioenergy fields may be more beneficial for grassland birds if they are established near other grassland parcels. Predicted total bird density peaked below maximum biomass yields and predicted SGCN density was negatively related to biomass yields. Our results indicate that perennial grassland fields could produce bioenergy feedstocks while providing bird habitat. Bioenergy grasslands promote agricultural multifunctionality and conservation of biodiversity in working landscapes.

  4. Proximate drivers of spatial segregation in non-breeding albatrosses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clay, Thomas A.; Manica, Andrea; Ryan, Peter G.; Silk, Janet R. D.; Croxall, John P.; Ireland, Louise; Phillips, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    Many animals partition resources to avoid competition, and in colonially-breeding species this often leads to divergent space or habitat use. During the non-breeding season, foraging constraints are relaxed, yet the patterns and drivers of segregation both between and within populations are poorly understood. We modelled habitat preference to examine how extrinsic (habitat availability and intra-specific competition) and intrinsic factors (population, sex and breeding outcome) influence the distributions of non-breeding grey-headed albatrosses Thalassarche chrysostoma tracked from two major populations, South Georgia (Atlantic Ocean) and the Prince Edward Islands (Indian Ocean). Spatial segregation was greater than expected, reflecting distinct seasonal differences in habitat selection and accessibility, and avoidance of intra-specific competition with local breeders. Previously failed birds segregated spatially from successful birds during summer, when they used less productive waters, suggesting a link between breeding outcome and subsequent habitat selection. In contrast, we found weak evidence of sexual segregation, which did not reflect a difference in habitat use. Our results indicate that the large-scale spatial structuring of albatross distributions results from interactions between extrinsic and intrinsic factors, with important implications for population dynamics. As habitat preferences differed substantially between colonies, populations should be considered independently when identifying critical areas for protection. PMID:27443877

  5. Vulnerability of shortgrass prairie bird assemblages to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skagen, Susan; Dreitz, Victoria; Conrey, Reesa Y.; Yackel, Amy; Panjabi, Arvind O.; Knuffman, Lekha

    2016-01-01

    The habitats and resources needed to support grassland birds endemic to North American prairie ecosystems are seriously threatened by impending climate change. To assess the vulnerability of grassland birds to climate change, we consider various components of vulnerability, including sensitivity, exposure, and adaptive capacity (Glick et al. 2011). Sensitivity encompasses the innate characteristics of a species and, in this context, is related to a species’ tolerance to changes in weather patterns. Groundnesting birds, including prairie birds, are particularly responsive to heat waves combined with drought conditions, as revealed by abundance and distribution patterns (Albright et al. 2010). To further assess sensitivity, we estimated reproductive parameters of nearly 3000 breeding attempts of a suite of prairie birds relative to prevailing weather. Fluctuations in weather conditions in eastern Colorado, 1997-2014, influenced breeding performance of a suite of avian species endemic to the shortgrass prairie, many of which have experienced recent population declines. High summer temperatures and intense rain events corresponded with lower nest survival for most species. Although dry conditions favored nest survival of Burrowing Owls and Mountain Plovers (Conrey 2010, Dreitz et al. 2012), drought resulted in smaller clutch sizes and lower nest survival for passerines (Skagen and Yackel Adams 2012, Conrey et al. in review). Declining summer precipitation may reduce the likelihood that some passerine species can maintain stable breeding populations in this region of the shortgrass prairie.

  6. Genetic and morphological divergence among Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) populations breeding in north-central and western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Rosenfield, Robert N.; Bielefeldt, John; Murphy, Robert K.; Stewart, Andrew C.; Stout, William C.; Driscoll, Timothy G.; Bozek, Michael A.; Sloss, Brian L.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2012-01-01

    Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) populations breeding in the northern portion of the species' range exhibit variation in morphological traits that conforms to predictions based on differences in prey size, tree stand density, and migratory behavior. We examined genetic structure and gene flow and compared divergence at morphological traits (PST) and genetic markers (FST) to elucidate mechanisms (selection or genetic drift) that promote morphological diversification among Cooper's Hawk populations. Cooper's Hawks appear to conform to the genetic pattern of an east-west divide. Populations in British Columbia are genetically differentiated from north-central populations (Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota; pairwise microsatellite FST= 0.031-0.050; mitochondrial DNA ΦST = 0.177-0.204), which suggests that Cooper's Hawks were restricted to at least two Pleistocene glacial refugia. The strength of the Rocky Mountains—Great Plains area as a barrier to dispersal is further supported by restricted gene-flow rates between British Columbia and other sampled breeding populations. Divergence in morphological traits (PST) was also observed across study areas, but with British Columbia and North Dakota differentiated from Wisconsin and Minnesota, a pattern not predicted on the basis of FST and ΦST interpopulation estimates. Comparison of PSTand FSTestimates suggests that heterogeneous selection may be acting on Cooper's Hawks in the northern portion of their distribution, which is consistent with hypotheses that variation in prey mass and migratory behavior among populations may be influencing overall body size and wing chord. We were unable to distinguish between the effects of genetic drift and selection on tail length in the study populations.

  7. Multiple-breed reaction norm animal model accounting for robustness and heteroskedastic in a Nelore-Angus crossed population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, M M; Santana, M L; Cardoso, F F

    2016-07-01

    Our objective was to genetically characterize post-weaning weight gain (PWG), over a 345-day period after weaning, of Brangus-Ibagé (Nelore×Angus) cattle. Records (n=4016) were from the foundation herd of the Embrapa South Livestock Center. A Bayesian approach was used to assess genotype by environment (G×E) interaction and to identify a suitable model for the estimation of genetic parameters and use in genetic evaluation. A robust and heteroscedastic reaction norm multiple-breed animal model was proposed. The model accounted for heterogeneity of residual variance associated with effects of breed, heterozygosity, sex and contemporary group; and was robust with respect to outliers. Additive genetic effects were modeled for the intercept and slope of a reaction norm to changes in the environmental gradient. Inference was based on Monte Carlo Markov Chain of 110 000 cycles, after 10 000 cycles of burn-in. Bayesian model choice criteria indicated the proposed model was superior to simpler sub-models that did not account for G×E interaction, multiple-breed structure, robustness and heteroscedasticity. We conclude that, for the Brangus-Ibagé population, these factors should be jointly accounted for in genetic evaluation of PWG. Heritability estimates increased proportionally with improvement in the environmental conditions gradient. Therefore, an increased proportion of differences in performance among animals were explained by genetic factors rather than environmental factors as rearing conditions improved. As a consequence response to selection may be increased in favorable environments. PMID:26754914

  8. Multiple-breed reaction norm animal model accounting for robustness and heteroskedastic in a Nelore-Angus crossed population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, M M; Santana, M L; Cardoso, F F

    2016-07-01

    Our objective was to genetically characterize post-weaning weight gain (PWG), over a 345-day period after weaning, of Brangus-Ibagé (Nelore×Angus) cattle. Records (n=4016) were from the foundation herd of the Embrapa South Livestock Center. A Bayesian approach was used to assess genotype by environment (G×E) interaction and to identify a suitable model for the estimation of genetic parameters and use in genetic evaluation. A robust and heteroscedastic reaction norm multiple-breed animal model was proposed. The model accounted for heterogeneity of residual variance associated with effects of breed, heterozygosity, sex and contemporary group; and was robust with respect to outliers. Additive genetic effects were modeled for the intercept and slope of a reaction norm to changes in the environmental gradient. Inference was based on Monte Carlo Markov Chain of 110 000 cycles, after 10 000 cycles of burn-in. Bayesian model choice criteria indicated the proposed model was superior to simpler sub-models that did not account for G×E interaction, multiple-breed structure, robustness and heteroscedasticity. We conclude that, for the Brangus-Ibagé population, these factors should be jointly accounted for in genetic evaluation of PWG. Heritability estimates increased proportionally with improvement in the environmental conditions gradient. Therefore, an increased proportion of differences in performance among animals were explained by genetic factors rather than environmental factors as rearing conditions improved. As a consequence response to selection may be increased in favorable environments.

  9. Estimation of direct and maternal breed effects for prediction of expected progeny differences for birth and weaning weights in three multibreed populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Almeida, F A; Van Vleck, L D; Gregory, K E

    1997-05-01

    Direct and maternal breed effects on birth and 200-d weights were estimated for nine parental breeds (Hereford [H], Angus [A], Braunvieh [B], Limousin [L], Charolais [C], Simmental [S], Gelbvieh [G], Red Poll [R], and Pinzgauer [P]) that contributed to three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4B, 1/4C, 1/4L, 1/8H, 1/8A; MARC II = 1/4G, 1/4S, 1/4H, 1/4A; and MARC III = 1/4R, 1/4P, 1/4H, 1/4A). Records from each population, the composite plus pure breeds and crosses used to create each composite, were analyzed separately. The animal model included fixed effects of contemporary group (birth year-sex-dam age), proportions of individual and maternal heterosis and breed inheritance as covariates, and random effects of additive direct genetic (a) and additive maternal genetic (m) with covariance (a,m), permanent environment, and residual. Sampling correlations among estimates of genetic fixed effects were large, especially between direct and maternal heterosis and between direct and maternal breed genetic effects for the same breed, which were close to -1. This resulted in some large estimates with opposite sign and large standard errors for direct and maternal breed genetic effects. Data from a diallel experiment with H, A, B, and R breeds, from grading up and from a top cross experiment were required to separate breed effects satisfactorily into direct and maternal genetic effects. Results indicate that estimation of direct and maternal breed effects needed to predict hybrid EPD for multibreed populations from field data may not be possible. Information from designed crossbreeding experiments will need to be incorporated in some way.

  10. Breeding signature of combining ability improvement revealed by a genomic variation map from recurrent selection population in Brassica napus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xinwang; Li, Bao; Zhang, Ka; Hu, Kaining; Yi, Bin; Wen, Jing; Ma, Chaozhi; Shen, Jinxiong; Fu, Tingdong; Tu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Combining ability is crucial for parent selection in crop hybrid breeding. The present investigation and results had revealed the underlying genetic factors which might contribute in adequate combining ability, further assisting in enhancing heterosis and stability. Here, we conducted a large-scale analysis of genomic variation in order to define genomic regions affecting the combining ability in recurrent selection population of rapeseed. A population of 175 individuals was genotyped with the Brassica60K SNP chip. 525 hybrids were assembled with three different testers and used to evaluate the general combining ability (GCA) in three environments. By detecting the changes of the genomic variation, we identified 376 potential genome regions, spanning 3.03% of rapeseed genome which provided QTL-level resolution on potentially selected variants. More than 96% of these regions were located in the C subgenome, indicating that C subgenome had sustained stronger selection pressure in the breeding program than the A subgenome. In addition, a high level of linkage disequilibrium in rapeseed genome was detected, suggesting that marker-assisted selection for the population improvement might be easily implemented. This study outlines the evidence for high GCA on a genomic level and provided underlying molecular mechanism for recurrent selection improvement in B. napus. PMID:27412721

  11. Breeding signature of combining ability improvement revealed by a genomic variation map from recurrent selection population in Brassica napus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xinwang; Li, Bao; Zhang, Ka; Hu, Kaining; Yi, Bin; Wen, Jing; Ma, Chaozhi; Shen, Jinxiong; Fu, Tingdong; Tu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Combining ability is crucial for parent selection in crop hybrid breeding. The present investigation and results had revealed the underlying genetic factors which might contribute in adequate combining ability, further assisting in enhancing heterosis and stability. Here, we conducted a large-scale analysis of genomic variation in order to define genomic regions affecting the combining ability in recurrent selection population of rapeseed. A population of 175 individuals was genotyped with the Brassica60K SNP chip. 525 hybrids were assembled with three different testers and used to evaluate the general combining ability (GCA) in three environments. By detecting the changes of the genomic variation, we identified 376 potential genome regions, spanning 3.03% of rapeseed genome which provided QTL-level resolution on potentially selected variants. More than 96% of these regions were located in the C subgenome, indicating that C subgenome had sustained stronger selection pressure in the breeding program than the A subgenome. In addition, a high level of linkage disequilibrium in rapeseed genome was detected, suggesting that marker-assisted selection for the population improvement might be easily implemented. This study outlines the evidence for high GCA on a genomic level and provided underlying molecular mechanism for recurrent selection improvement in B. napus. PMID:27412721

  12. The Swedish breeding cat: population description, infectious diseases and reproductive performance evaluated by a questionnaire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ström Holst, Bodil; Frössling, Jenny

    2009-10-01

    The questionnaire based study gives a combined description of management, infectious diseases and reproductive performance in breeding catteries during 1 year. The mean number of cats per cattery was 6.1, and 25% of the breeders let some of their cats have free access to outdoors. Breeders reported that infection with feline panleukopenia virus, feline immunodeficiency virus or feline leukaemia virus was uncommon, but 8% of the breeders had sold or had themselves owned a cat that died of feline infectious peritonitis. Presence of conjunctivitis was reported by 33.3% of the breeders. Mean litter size was 3.7+/-1.5, with 9.7% stillbirths and 8.3% kitten mortality week 1-12. The percentage of stillborn kittens increased with the age of the queen and litter size, and also differed among breeds. Kitten mortality differed among breeds, but did not increase with age of the queen. Seven percent of the litters were delivered by caesarean section, significantly more during winter and positively associated with presence of stillborn kittens. PMID:19254857

  13. The role of selection and historical factors in driving population differentiation along an elevational gradient in an island bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertrand, J A M; Delahaie, B; Bourgeois, Y X C; Duval, T; García-Jiménez, R; Cornuault, J; Pujol, B; Thébaud, C; Milá, B

    2016-04-01

    Adaptation to local environmental conditions and the range dynamics of populations can influence evolutionary divergence along environmental gradients. Thus, it is important to investigate patterns of both phenotypic and genetic variations among populations to reveal the respective roles of these two types of factors in driving population differentiation. Here, we test for evidence of phenotypic and genetic structure across populations of a passerine bird (Zosterops borbonicus) distributed along a steep elevational gradient on the island of Réunion. Using 11 microsatellite loci screened in 401 individuals from 18 localities distributed along the gradient, we found that genetic differentiation occurred at two spatial levels: (i) between two main population groups corresponding to highland and lowland areas, respectively, and (ii) within each of these two groups. In contrast, several morphological traits varied gradually along the gradient. Comparison of neutral genetic differentiation (FST ) and phenotypic differentiation (PST ) showed that PST largely exceeds FST at several morphological traits, which is consistent with a role for local adaptation in driving morphological divergence along the gradient. Overall, our results revealed an area of secondary contact midway up the gradient between two major, cryptic, population groups likely diverged in allopatry. Remarkably, local adaptation has shaped phenotypic differentiation irrespective of population history, resulting in different patterns of variation along the elevational gradient. Our findings underscore the importance of understanding both historical and selective factors when trying to explain variation along environmental gradients. PMID:26779843

  14. Speeding up microevolution: the effects of increasing temperature on selection and genetic variance in a wild bird population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arild Husby

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The amount of genetic variance underlying a phenotypic trait and the strength of selection acting on that trait are two key parameters that determine any evolutionary response to selection. Despite substantial evidence that, in natural populations, both parameters may vary across environmental conditions, very little is known about the extent to which they may covary in response to environmental heterogeneity. Here we show that, in a wild population of great tits (Parus major, the strength of the directional selection gradients on timing of breeding increased with increasing spring temperatures, and that genotype-by-environment interactions also predicted an increase in additive genetic variance, and heritability, of timing of breeding with increasing spring temperature. Consequently, we therefore tested for an association between the annual selection gradients and levels of additive genetic variance expressed each year; this association was positive, but non-significant. However, there was a significant positive association between the annual selection differentials and the corresponding heritability. Such associations could potentially speed up the rate of micro-evolution and offer a largely ignored mechanism by which natural populations may adapt to environmental changes.

  15. Survey of breeding birds using point count methodologies on the Gardner Division of the Mark Twain National Wildlife Refuge in Illinois

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes a study done on the Gardner Division of Mark Twain NWR to compliment ongoing neotropical migrant bird studies along the Upper Mississippi...

  16. Estimating population dynamics and dispersal distances of owls from nationally coordinated ringing data in Finland

    OpenAIRE

    Saurola, P.; Francis, C. M.

    2004-01-01

    Amateur bird ringers can collect data at a geographic and temporal scale that is rarely possible with professional field crews, thus allowing truly national analyses of population dynamics and dispersal. Since the early 1970s, bird ringers in Finland have been strongly encouraged to focus on birds of prey, especially cavity–nesting owls. In addition to ringing nestlings and adults, ringers also provide data on population trends and breeding success. The resultant data indicate that numbers of...

  17. Simulating range-wide population and breeding habitat dynamics for an endangered woodland warbler in the face of uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adam Duarte,; Hatfield, Jeffrey; Todd M. Swannack,; Michael R. J. Forstner,; M. Clay Green,; Floyd W. Weckerly,

    2015-01-01

    Population viability analyses provide a quantitative approach that seeks to predict the possible future status of a species of interest under different scenarios and, therefore, can be important components of large-scale species’ conservation programs. We created a model and simulated range-wide population and breeding habitat dynamics for an endangered woodland warbler, the golden-cheeked warbler (Setophaga chrysoparia). Habitat-transition probabilities were estimated across the warbler's breeding range by combining National Land Cover Database imagery with multistate modeling. Using these estimates, along with recently published demographic estimates, we examined if the species can remain viable into the future given the current conditions. Lastly, we evaluated if protecting a greater amount of habitat would increase the number of warblers that can be supported in the future by systematically increasing the amount of protected habitat and comparing the estimated terminal carrying capacity at the end of 50 years of simulated habitat change. The estimated habitat-transition probabilities supported the hypothesis that habitat transitions are unidirectional, whereby habitat is more likely to diminish than regenerate. The model results indicated population viability could be achieved under current conditions, depending on dispersal. However, there is considerable uncertainty associated with the population projections due to parametric uncertainty. Model results suggested that increasing the amount of protected lands would have a substantial impact on terminal carrying capacities at the end of a 50-year simulation. Notably, this study identifies the need for collecting the data required to estimate demographic parameters in relation to changes in habitat metrics and population density in multiple regions, and highlights the importance of establishing a common definition of what constitutes protected habitat, what management goals are suitable within those protected

  18. Does timing of breeding matter less where the grass is greener? Seasonal declines in breeding performance differ between regions in an endangered endemic raptor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Sophie Garcia-Heras

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The timing of breeding can strongly influence individual breeding performance and fitness. Seasonal declines in breeding parameters have been often documented in birds, particularly in the Northern Hemisphere. Fewer studies have investigated whether seasonal declines in productivity vary in space, which would have implications for a species’ population dynamics across its distributional range. We report here on variation in the timing of breeding in the Black Harrier (Circus maurus, an endangered and endemic raptor to Southern Africa. We investigated how key breeding parameters (clutch size, nesting success and productivity varied with the timing of breeding, weather conditions (rainfall and temperature and between contrasted regions (coastal vs. interior-mountain. Black Harrier onset of breeding extended over an 8-month period, with a peak of laying between mid-August and end of September. We show a marked seasonal decline in all breeding parameters. Importantly, for clutch size and productivity these seasonal declines differed regionally, being more pronounced in interior-mountain than in coastal regions, where the breeding season was overall shorter. Timing of breeding, clutch size and productivity were also partly explained by weather conditions. In coastal regions, where environmental conditions, in particular rainfall, appear to be less variable, the timing of breeding matters less for breeding output than in interior-mountain regions, and breeding attempts thus occurred over a longer period. The former areas may act as population sources and be key in protecting the long-term population viability of this threatened endemic raptor. This study provides unique evidence for a regionally variable seasonal decline in breeding performance with implications for population biology and conservation.

  19. Breeding biology and conservation strategy of the Himalayan swiftlet (Aerodramus brevirostris innominata) in southern China

    OpenAIRE

    Bin Wang; Youhui Shen; Qingyi Liao; Jianzhang Ma

    2013-01-01

    From April 1994 to November 2007, we studied the breeding biology of the Himalayan swiftlet (Aerodramus brevirostris innominata) based on field investigations, behavior observations, and bird bandings in the Shenjing Cave of Hupingshan National Nature Reserve, Hunan Province. Overall, we found a total breeding population of 2,000 swiftlets in the cave. The Himilayan swiftlet is a summer migrant in the area which arrives in early April and departs in early November. This species is monogamous ...

  20. Bird associations with shrubsteppe plant communities at the proposed reference repository location in southeastern Washington

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schuler, C.A.; Rickard, W.H.; Sargeant, G.A.

    1988-03-01

    This report provides information on te seasonal use of shrubsteppe vegetation by bird species at the RRL. Bird abundance and distribution were studied at the RRL to ensure that the DOE monitored migratory bird species pursuant to the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and to assess potential impacts of site characterization activities on bird populations. Birds were counted on two transects that together sampled an areas of 1.39 km/sup 2/. The relative abundance of birds, species richness, seasonal distribution, and the association of breeding shrubsteppe birds with major vegetation types were determined from Janurary through December 1987. Only 38 species were counted during 82 surveys. Total bird density during the nesting season (March-June) was 42.96 birdskm/sup 2/ and the density for the entire year was 26.74 birdskm/sup 2/. The characteristic nesting birds in shrubsteppe habitats were western meadowlark, sage sparrow, burrowing owl, mourning dove, horned lark, long-billed curlew, lark sparrow, and loggerhead shrike. Western meadowlark and sage sparrows were the most abundant breeding birds with an average density of 11.25 and 7.76 birdskm/sup 2/, respectively. Seasonal distribution of birds varied with species, but most species were present from March to September. Distribution and abunandance of nesting birds were correlated with habitat type. About 63% of the habitat surveyed was sagebrush, 26% was cheatgrass, and 11% was spiny hopsage. Sagebrush habitat supproted a greeater total bird density than cheatgrass or hopsage habitats. Sage sparrows were closely associated with sagebrush habitats, while western meadowlarks showed no strong habitat affinities. 22 refs., 9 figs., 6 tabs

  1. Breeding system and reproductive skew in a highly polygynous ant population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haag-Liautard, C.; Pedersen, Jes Søe; Ovaskainen, O.;

    2008-01-01

     Factors affecting relatedness among nest members in ant colonies with high queen number are still poorly understood. In order to identify the major determinants of nest kin structure, we conducted a detailed analysis of the breeding system of the ant Formica exsecta. We estimated the number of...... individuals were significantly related to each other. Interestingly, the number of resident queens was a poor predictor of kin structure at the nest level, consistent with the observation that new queens are produced in bursts leading to highly fluctuating queen number across years. Queen number also varied...

  2. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations for reproduction and maternal traits of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1992-03-01

    Heterosis effects in F1 dams producing F2 progeny and retained heterosis in combined F2 and F3 dams producing F3 and F4 progeny were evaluated in dams 2 yr old, in dams greater than or equal to 5 yr old, and in dams of all ages. Traits included pregnant percentage, calf crop born percentage, calf crop weaned percentage, 200-d calf weight per heifer or cow exposed, and 200-d calf weight. Breed effects were evaluated in the nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 B, 1/4 C, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Breed effects were significant for all traits evaluated in the three age groupings and generally were greatest in 2-yr-old dams and smallest in dams greater than or equal to 5 yr old. Heterosis effects for 200-d calf weight were relatively uniform among age groupings and among the three composite populations and heterosis retained was equal to, or greater than, expectation based on retained heterozygosity. Heterosis effects in animals of all ages for reproductive traits in F1 dams producing F2 progeny differed among the three composite populations, as did heterosis retained in combined F2 and F3 dams producing F3 and F4 progeny. In dams of all ages, heterosis retained for reproductive traits in F2 and F3 dams producing F3 and F4 progeny did not differ (P greater than .05) from expectation based on retained heterozygosity in two of the three composite populations, but loss of heterosis was greater (P less than .05) than expectation based on retained heterozygosity in one of the three composite populations for calf crop born percentage, calf crop weaned percentage, and 200-d calf weight per heifer or cow exposed. This reduction was the result of increased fetal loss between pregnancy diagnosis and parturition

  3. Effects of various breeding strategies on diploid drone frequency and quantitative traits in a honey bee population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omholt, S W; Adnøy, T

    1994-11-01

    When selecting in a finite population of honeybees there is a conflict between gain in a quantitative trait and increasing homozygosity, and therefore the frequency of inviable diploid drones. The consequences when using different mating, import, and selection strategies on diploid drone frequency and genetic gain, was explored with Monte Carlo computer simulations.Within a closed population breeding structure, mass selection gave the highest genetic gain in the quantitative trait, but also the largest increase in percentage diploid drones and queens with unacceptably-low brood viability. Mass selection combined with truncation selection against queens having more than 15% diploid drones gave a comparable genetic gain and was the best strategy of the ones studied to avoid diploid drones. Within-family selection (one replacement per sib group) gave the least genetic gain, and a frequency of diploid drones comparable to random (no) selection. It was intermediate between mass selection and mass selection combined with viability selection concerning the frequency of diploid drones.Insemination with pooled and homogenized semen originating from all breeder queens (30), as compared to natural mating with 12 randomly-selected drones, had little effect on the genetic gain and on the overall frequency of diploid drones (10 to 15% by generation 20).The effect of opening the closed breeding population for the import of external queens every generation, by exchanging breeder queens of lowest performance with a corresponding number of new queens (5, 10and 15 out of 30), was also investigated. Under mass selection (natural mating as well as artificial insemination) the frequency of diploid drones and the proportion of queens discarded were reduced because of low brood viability. However, artificial insemination was superior to natural mating considering the latter criterion. If the imported queens were at the same genetic level for the quantitative trait under selection as the

  4. Variation in the hematocrit of a passerine bird across life stages is mainly of environmental origin

    OpenAIRE

    Potti, Jaime

    2007-01-01

    The heritability of the hematocrit in adult, breeding pied flycatchers Ficedula hypoleuca is examined in a southern European population across seven years to see the consistency, or lack thereof, of patterns found with the trait at fledgling age where no significant heritability could be detected. While the across-years repeatability of the trait in adult, breeding birds was low but significant, heritabilities based on adult parent-adult offspring regressions controlling for assortative matin...

  5. Illinois’ 2000 breeding season report

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes the 2000 breeding season for grassland birds in Illinois. The report begins by summarizing weather conditions throughout the season and...

  6. Effects of Grassland Bird Management on Nongame Bird Community Structure and Productivity

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The report includes data on bird/habitat relations, breeding biology, and effects of succession and current management practices on grassland bird communities in...

  7. The effects of climate change on the phenology of selected Estonian plant, bird and fish populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahas, Rein; Aasa, Anto

    2006-09-01

    This paper summarises the trends of 943 phenological time-series of plants, fishes and birds gathered from 1948 to 1999 in Estonia. More than 80% of the studied phenological phases have advanced during springtime, whereas changes are smaller during summer and autumn. Significant values of plant and bird phases have advanced 5-20 days, and fish phases have advanced 10-30 days in the spring period. Estonia's average air temperature has become significantly warmer in spring, while at the same time a slight decrease in air temperature has been detected in autumn. The growing season has become significantly longer in the maritime climate area of Western Estonia. The investigated phenological and climate trends are related primarily to changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAOI) during the winter months. Although the impact of the winter NAOI on the phases decreases towards summer, the trends of the investigated phases remain high. The trends of phenophases at the end of spring and the beginning of summer may be caused by the temperature inertia of the changing winter, changes in the radiation balance or the direct consequences of human impacts such as land use, heat islands or air pollution. PMID:16738902

  8. Genetic diversity, population structure and subdivision of local Balkan pig breeds in Austria, Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina and its practical value in conservation programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Druml Thomas

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background At present the Croatian Turopolje pig population comprises about 157 breeding animals. In Austria, 324 Turopolje pigs originating from six Croatian founder animals are registered. Multiple bottlenecks have occurred in this population, one major one rather recently and several more older and moderate ones. In addition, it has been subdivided into three subpopulations, one in Austria and two in Croatia, with restricted gene flow. These specificities explain the delicate situation of this endangered Croatian lard-type pig breed. Methods In order to identify candidate breeding animals or gene pools for future conservation breeding programs, we studied the genetic diversity and population structure of this breed using microsatellite data from 197 individuals belonging to five different breeds. Results The genetic diversity of the Turopolje pig is dramatically low with observed heterozygosities values ranging from 0.38 to 0.57. Split into three populations since 1994, two genetic clusters could be identified: one highly conserved Croatian gene pool in Turopoljski Lug and the"Posavina" gene pool mainly present in the Austrian population. The second Croatian subpopulation in Lonjsko Polje in the Posavina region shows a constant gene flow from the Turopoljski Lug animals. Conclusions One practical conclusion is that it is necessary to develop a "Posavina" boar line to preserve the "Posavina" gene pool and constitute a corresponding population in Croatia. Animals of the highly inbred herd in Turopoljski Lug should not be crossed with animals of other populations since they represent a specific phenotype-genotype combination. However to increase the genetic diversity of this herd, a program to optimize its sex ratio should be carried out, as was done in the Austrian population where the level of heterozygosity has remained moderate despite its heavy bottleneck in 1994.

  9. Alien invasive birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brochier, B; Vangeluwe, D; van den Berg, T

    2010-08-01

    A bird species is regarded as alien invasive if it has been introduced, intentionally or accidentally, to a location where it did not previously occur naturally, becomes capable of establishing a breeding population without further intervention by humans, spreads and becomes a pest affecting the environment, the local biodiversity, the economy and/or society, including human health. European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris), Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis) and Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) have been included on the list of '100 of the World's Worst Invasive Alien Species', a subset of the Global Invasive Species Database. The 'Delivering Alien Invasive Species Inventories for Europe' project has selected Canada Goose (Branta canadensis), Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis), Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) and Sacred Ibis (Threskiornis aethiopicus) as among 100 of the worst invasive species in Europe. For each of these alien bird species, the geographic range (native and introduced range), the introduction pathway, the general impacts and the management methods are presented. PMID:20919578

  10. Connectivity patterns and key non–breeding areas of white–throated bluethroat (Luscinia svecica European populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arizaga, J.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Using ring recovery data from the EURING databank, the aims of this study were: (1 to identify the chief migration and wintering areas of white–throated bluethroat European subspecies, L. s. namnetum, L. s. cyanecula and L. s. azuricollis, (2 to evaluate the degree of connectivity between breeding and non–breeding regions and determine the migration patterns of each subspecies, and (3 to evaluate whether recovery data are sufficient to answer the previous questions adequately. Most of the recoveries were obtained during the autumn migration period (n = 155, 68.9%, followed by winter (n = 49, 21.8% and spring (n = 21, 9.3%. For L. s. azuricollis, we did not find any ring recoveries at more than 100 km in autumn or spring, and there were none at all in winter. All analyses thus relate to L. s. cyanecula and L. s. namnetum. Both subspecies move across a NE–SW axis from their breeding to their wintering areas within the circum–Mediterranean region, mainly in Iberia, following population–specific parallel migration routes. L. s. namnetum mainly uses the Atlantic coastal marshes from France to south–western Iberia, where the chief wintering areas are found. L. s. cyanecula, however, uses both Atlantic and Mediterranean wetlands in autumn, but only those in the Mediterranean in spring, thus giving rise to a loop–migration pattern. Telescopic migration was demonstrated for L. s. cyanecula. Recovery data were insufficient to identify in detail the entire wintering range for all white–throated bluethroat European populations. Technologies such as the use of geolocators will play a relevant role in this scenario

  11. Breeding origin and migration pattern of dunlin (Calidris alpina) revealed by mitochondrial DNA analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wennerberg, L

    2001-05-01

    The large-scale migration of birds has been studied extensively by recoveries of ringed birds. However, there is very little ringing data from the arctic breeding grounds of waders. Here, the migration pattern of the dunlin, Calidris alpina, is studied with population genetic markers, using haplotype frequencies to estimate the breeding origin of migrating and wintering populations. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and restriction analysis of DNA from the mitochondrial control region was used to study the breeding origins of morphologically similar winter populations in the western Palaearctic, and to describe the population structure of the dunlin during winter. Also migrating dunlin from various stopover sites in Europe, Africa and Asia, were analysed with respect to their mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes. The genetic markers clearly show that the dunlin has a parallel migration system, with populations breeding in the western Palaearctic wintering mainly in the western part of the wintering range, and dunlin populations breeding further east wintering further east. The results also show that the distance between breeding and wintering area increases eastwards in this region. PMID:11380870

  12. Notes on the breeding biology of Javan Hawk-eagle in West Java, Indonesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijman, V.; Balen, van S.; Sözer, R.

    2000-01-01

    The Javan Hawk-eagle Spizaetus bartelsi is one of the rarest and least known birds of prey, regarded as globally endangered and confined to the last remnants of forests left on the densely populated island of Java, Indonesia. Its biology is little-known and only a few cases of breeding have been rep

  13. Optimizing the creation of base populations for aquaculture breeding programs using phenotypic and genomic data and its consequences on genetic progress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesús eFernández

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The success of an aquaculture breeding program critically depends on the way in which the base population of breeders is constructed since all the genetic variability for the traits included originally in the breeding goal as well as those to be included in the future is contained in those initial founders. Traditionally base populations were created from a number of wild strains by sampling equal numbers from each strain. However, for some aquaculture species improved strains are already available and therefore, mean phenotypic values for economically important traits can be used as a criterion to optimize the sampling when creating base populations. Also, the increasing availability of genome-wide genotype information in aquaculture species could help to refine the estimation of relationships within and between candidate strains and, thus, to optimize the percentage of individuals to be sampled from each strain. This study explores the advantages of using phenotypic and genome-wide information when constructing base populations for aquaculture breeding programs in terms of initial and subsequent trait performance and genetic diversity level. Results show that a compromise solution between diversity and performance can be found when creating base populations. Up to 6% higher levels of phenotypic performance can be achieved at the same level of global diversity in the base population by optimizing the selection of breeders instead of sampling equal numbers from each strain. The higher performance observed in the base population persisted during ten generations of phenotypic selection applied in the subsequent breeding program.

  14. Optimizing the creation of base populations for aquaculture breeding programs using phenotypic and genomic data and its consequences on genetic progress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Jesús; Toro, Miguel Á; Sonesson, Anna K; Villanueva, Beatriz

    2014-01-01

    The success of an aquaculture breeding program critically depends on the way in which the base population of breeders is constructed since all the genetic variability for the traits included originally in the breeding goal as well as those to be included in the future is contained in the initial founders. Traditionally, base populations were created from a number of wild strains by sampling equal numbers from each strain. However, for some aquaculture species improved strains are already available and, therefore, mean phenotypic values for economically important traits can be used as a criterion to optimize the sampling when creating base populations. Also, the increasing availability of genome-wide genotype information in aquaculture species could help to refine the estimation of relationships within and between candidate strains and, thus, to optimize the percentage of individuals to be sampled from each strain. This study explores the advantages of using phenotypic and genome-wide information when constructing base populations for aquaculture breeding programs in terms of initial and subsequent trait performance and genetic diversity level. Results show that a compromise solution between diversity and performance can be found when creating base populations. Up to 6% higher levels of phenotypic performance can be achieved at the same level of global diversity in the base population by optimizing the selection of breeders instead of sampling equal numbers from each strain. The higher performance observed in the base population persisted during 10 generations of phenotypic selection applied in the subsequent breeding program.

  15. Signature of a pre-human population decline in the critically endangered Reunion Island endemic forest bird Coracina newtoni.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Salmona

    Full Text Available The exceptional biodiversity of Reunion Island is threatened by anthropogenic landscape changes that took place during the 350 years of human colonization. During this period the human population size increased dramatically from 250 to 800,000. The arrival of humans together with the development of agriculture, invasive species such as rats and cats, and deforestation has lead to the extinction of more than half of the original vertebrate species of the island. For the remaining species, significant work is being carried out to identify threats and conservation status, but little genetic work has been carried on some of the most endangered species. In the last decade theoretical studies have shown the ability of neutral genetic markers to infer the demographic history of endangered species and identify and date past population size changes (expansions or bottlenecks. In this study we provide the first genetic data on the critically endangered species the Reunion cuckoo-shrike Coracina newtoni. The Reunion cuckoo-shrike is a rare endemic forest bird surviving in a restricted 12-km(2 area of forested uplands and mountains. The total known population consists of less than one hundred individuals out of which 45 were genotyped using seventeen polymorphic microsatellite loci. We found a limited level of genetic variability and weak population structure, probably due to the limited geographic distribution. Using Bayesian methods, we identified a strong decline in population size during the Holocene, most likely caused by an ancient climatic or volcanic event around 5000 years ago. This result was surprising as it appeared in apparent contradiction with the accepted theory of recent population collapse due to deforestation and predator introduction. These results suggest that new methods allowing for more complex demographic models are necessary to reconstruct the demographic history of populations.

  16. Signature of a Pre-Human Population Decline in the Critically Endangered Reunion Island Endemic Forest Bird Coracina newtoni

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmona, Jordi; Salamolard, Marc; Fouillot, Damien; Ghestemme, Thomas; Larose, Jerry; Centon, Jean-François; Sousa, Vitor; Dawson, Deborah A.; Thebaud, Christophe; Chikhi, Lounès

    2012-01-01

    The exceptional biodiversity of Reunion Island is threatened by anthropogenic landscape changes that took place during the 350 years of human colonization. During this period the human population size increased dramatically from 250 to 800,000. The arrival of humans together with the development of agriculture, invasive species such as rats and cats, and deforestation has lead to the extinction of more than half of the original vertebrate species of the island. For the remaining species, significant work is being carried out to identify threats and conservation status, but little genetic work has been carried on some of the most endangered species. In the last decade theoretical studies have shown the ability of neutral genetic markers to infer the demographic history of endangered species and identify and date past population size changes (expansions or bottlenecks). In this study we provide the first genetic data on the critically endangered species the Reunion cuckoo-shrike Coracina newtoni. The Reunion cuckoo-shrike is a rare endemic forest bird surviving in a restricted 12-km2 area of forested uplands and mountains. The total known population consists of less than one hundred individuals out of which 45 were genotyped using seventeen polymorphic microsatellite loci. We found a limited level of genetic variability and weak population structure, probably due to the limited geographic distribution. Using Bayesian methods, we identified a strong decline in population size during the Holocene, most likely caused by an ancient climatic or volcanic event around 5000 years ago. This result was surprising as it appeared in apparent contradiction with the accepted theory of recent population collapse due to deforestation and predator introduction. These results suggest that new methods allowing for more complex demographic models are necessary to reconstruct the demographic history of populations. PMID:22916272

  17. Effective population size of an indigenous Swiss cattle breed estimated from linkage disequilibrium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Effective population size is an important parameter for the assessment of genetic diversity within a livestock population and its development over time. If pedigree information is not available, linkage disequilibrium (LD) analysis might offer an alternative perspective for the estimation of effecti...

  18. Recurrent Selection and Participatory Plant Breeding for Improvement of Two Organic Open-Pollinated Sweet Corn (Zea mays L. Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrienne C. Shelton

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Organic growers face unique challenges when raising sweet corn, and benefit from varieties that maintain high eating quality, germinate consistently, deter insect pests, and resist diseases. Genotype by environment rank changes can occur in the performance of cultivars grown on conventional and organic farms, yet few varieties have been bred specifically for organic systems. The objective of this experiment was to evaluate the changes made to open-pollinated sweet corn populations using recurrent selection and a participatory plant breeding (PPB methodology. From 2008 to 2011, four cycles of two open-pollinated (OP sweet corn populations were selected on a certified organic farm in Minnesota using a modified ear-to-row recurrent selection scheme. Selections were made in collaboration with an organic farmer, with selection criteria based on traits identified by the farmer. In 2012 and 2013, the population cycles were evaluated in a randomized complete block design in two certified organic locations in Wisconsin, with multiple replications in each environment. Significant linear trends were found among cycles of selection for quantitative and qualitative traits, suggesting the changes were due to recurrent selection and PPB methodology for these populations. However, further improvement is necessary to satisfy the requirements for a useful cultivar for organic growers.

  19. Comparison of breeding value prediction for two traits in a Nellore-Angus crossbred population using different Bayesian modeling methodologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren L. Hulsman Hanna

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The objectives of this study were to 1 compare four models for breeding value prediction using genomic or pedigree information and 2 evaluate the impact of fixed effects that account for family structure. Comparisons were made in a Nellore-Angus population comprising F2, F3 and half-siblings to embryo transfer F2 calves with records for overall temperament at weaning (TEMP; n = 769 and Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF; n = 387. After quality control, there were 34,913 whole genome SNP markers remaining. Bayesian methods employed were BayesB ( π = 0.995 or 0.997 for WBSF or TEMP, respectively and BayesC (π = 0 and π, where π is the ideal proportion of markers not included. Direct genomic values (DGV from single trait Bayesian analyses were compared to conventional pedigree-based animal model breeding values. Numerically, BayesC procedures (using π had the highest accuracy of all models for WBSF and TEMP ( ρgg = 0.843 and 0.923, respectively, but BayesB had the least bias (regression of performance on prediction closest to 1, βy,x = 2.886 and 1.755, respectively. Accounting for family structure decreased accuracy and increased bias in prediction of DGV indicating a detrimental impact when used in these prediction methods that simultaneously fit many markers.

  20. High rabbit abundance proves detrimental to the population growth rate in European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus L. extensive breeding enclosures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Ruiz-Aizpurua

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus L. is a key prey species in Mediterranean ecosystems that has declined in its natural ranges as a result of diseases and loss of habitat. This situation has led to the production of wild rabbits in enclosures in which they can acclimate and breed. The efficiency of these enclosures as extensive breeding systems is defined by their population growth rate (PGR. The aim of this study is to analyse the effect of rabbit abundance on the PGR. This has been done by creating general linear models to explain autumn and spring PGR with the use of rabbit abundance estimates, enclosure size, aerial predation and previous PGR as possible explanatory variables. Rabbit abundance and enclosure size negatively affected the autumn PGR, while only rabbit abundance affected the spring PGR in the best-fit models. It is suggested that maintaining rabbit densities at fewer than 30 rabbits per hectare might help to optimise the efficiency inside enclosures.

  1. Impacts of Population and Income Growth Rates on Threatened Mammals and Birds

    OpenAIRE

    Pandit, Ram; Laband, David N.

    2011-01-01

    Per capita income and human population levels in a country have direct influences on its environmental outcomes. Countries with same level of income may have different rate of income growth and vice versa, suggesting that the influence of the rate of income growth on environmental outcomes could be different than that of income level. Similarly, the rate of population growth might have different impact in addition to the impacts of sheer number of population. We explore this empirical questio...

  2. Bird populations and habitat use in the Okpilak River Delta area, Arctic National Wildlife Range, Alaska, 1978

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Bird census plots totaling 1.75 square-km in area on the Okpilak River delta, Arctic National Wildlife Range, Alaska, were sampled to determine nesting bird density...

  3. Relative roles of grey squirrels, supplementary feeding, and habitat in shaping urban bird assemblages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colin Bonnington

    Full Text Available Non-native species are frequently considered to influence urban assemblages. The grey squirrel Sciurus carolinensis is one such species that is widespread in the UK and is starting to spread across Europe; it predates birds' nests and can compete with birds for supplementary food. Using distance sampling across the urbanisation intensity gradient in Sheffield (UK we test whether urban grey squirrels influence avian species richness and density through nest predation and competition for supplementary food sources. We also assess how urban bird assemblages respond to supplementary feeding. We find that grey squirrels slightly reduced the abundance of breeding bird species most sensitive to squirrel nest predation by reducing the beneficial impact of woodland cover. There was no evidence that grey squirrel presence altered relationships between supplementary feeding and avian assemblage structure. This may be because, somewhat surprisingly, supplementary feeding was not associated with the richness or density of wintering bird assemblages. These associations were positive during the summer, supporting advocacy to feed birds during the breeding season and not just winter, but explanatory capacity was limited. The amount of green space and its quality, assessed as canopy cover, had a stronger influence on avian species richness and population size than the presence of grey squirrels and supplementary feeding stations. Urban bird populations are thus more likely to benefit from investment in improving the availability of high quality habitats than controlling squirrel populations or increased investment in supplementary feeding.

  4. 陕西秦岭东段南坡繁殖鸟类群落组成的30年变化%Breeding Bird Community and Change Over 30 Years in South Slope of Eastern Qinling Mountains

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赵洪峰; 罗磊; 侯玉宝; 许长生; 高学斌; 王树才

    2012-01-01

    The breeding bird community in south slope of eastern Qinling was surveyed twice in the period May to July in 2008 and 2010. Totally, 159 bird species yere accumulative observed. Ninety six bird species inhabited in cultivated land (215 -650 m) , of them Passer rutilans is the dominant species; 135 species were found in deciduous forest (650 — 1 200 m) and the dominant species is Parus monticolus; 73 species were recorded in deciduous and conifer mixed forest ( 1 200 - 2 200 m) , Garrulax elliotii is the dominant one. Among the birds observed, 64 species are the new records that have not listed before. Comparing with bird species list given by the field survey conducted in 1978 on bird community, 8 species found in 1978 were not observed in this study. The results of the field survey indicated that the component of breeding bird community in the study area has changed in the period of over 30 years.%于2008和2010年每年5~7月在秦岭东段南坡的商洛地区商南、山阳、柞水和洛南4县根据海拔和植被类型选择样点,并采用样线法和网捕法相结合的方法对繁殖鸟类群落进行了调查.共观察记述鸟类159种,农田和栽培植物带(215~650 m)有鸟类96种,其中优势种是山麻雀(Passer rutilans),低山阔叶林带(650~1 200m)鸟类种数最多,有135种,其中优势种是绿背山雀(Parus monticolus),针阔混交林带(1200 ~2200 m)有73种,其中优势种是橙翅噪鹛(Garrulax elliotii);秦岭东段南坡鸟类群落与中段南坡以及西段南坡和巴山北坡鸟类群落有较高的相似性,但是和秦岭北坡、巴山南坡的鸟类群落相似性较小,反映出秦岭和巴山对鸟类物种组成的阻隔作用和该地区鸟类区系组成的过渡性.和30年前相比,秦岭东段南坡鸟类物种增加了64种,但是有8种鸟类在2008和2010年的调查中未见到.总体上,秦岭东段南坡的繁殖鸟类群落组成在过去的30年里已经发生了明显的变化.

  5. A Mathematical Model for Singly-Peaked Population Processes from Breeding to Extinction

    CERN Document Server

    Huzimura, R; Huzimura, Ryoitiro; Matsuyama, Toyoki

    1999-01-01

    When a small number of individuals of organism of single species is confined in a closed space with limited amount of indispensable resources, their breading may start initially under suitable conditions, and after peaking, the population should go extinct as the resources are exhausted. Assuming that the carrying capacity of the environment is a function of resource amount, a mathematical model describing such pattern of population change is obtained. An application of this model to typical population records, that of deer herds by Scheffer (1951) and O'Roke and Hamerstrome (1948), yields estimations of the initial amount of indispensable food and its availability or nutritional efficiency which were previously unspecified.

  6. Pesticides, Persecution and Legal Protection Population effects on birds of prey.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arkes, Margit; Butter, Maureen (ed.).

    1997-01-01

    This report reviews the effects of pesticides, persecution and legal protection from a population perspective. In the past, legal hunting and organochlorine pesticides severely affected raptor populations. What lessons can be learned for the future? Is a second mass extinction, by other environmenta

  7. The Bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hannon, Jean

    2001-01-01

    Students use a dead bird to learn about bird life, anatomy, and death. Students examine a bird body and discuss what happened to the bird. Uses outdoor education as a resource for learning about animals. (SAH)

  8. Complete breeding failures in ivory gull following unusual rainy storms in North Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Glenn Yannic

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Natural catastrophic events such as heavy rainfall and windstorms may induce drastic decreases in breeding success of animal populations. We report the impacts of summer rainfalls on the reproductive success of ivory gull (Pagophila eburnea in north-east Greenland. On two occasions, at Amdrup Land in July 2009 and at Station Nord in July 2011, we observed massive ivory gull breeding failures following violent rainfall and windstorms that hit the colonies. In each colony, all of the breeding birds abandoned their eggs or chicks during the storm. Juvenile mortality was close to 100% at Amdrup Land in 2009 and 100% at Station Nord in 2011. Our results show that strong winds associated with heavy rain directly affected the reproductive success of some Arctic bird species. Such extreme weather events may become more common with climate change and represent a new potential factor affecting ivory gull breeding success in the High Arctic.

  9. Diffuse migratory connectivity in two species of shrubland birds: evidence from stable isotopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knick, Steven T.; Leu, Matthias; Rotenberry, John T.; Hanser, Steven E.; Fesenmyer, Kurt A.

    2014-01-01

    Connecting seasonal ranges of migratory birds is important for understanding the annual template of stressors that influence their populations. Brewer’s sparrows (Spizella breweri) and sagebrush sparrows (Artemisiospiza nevadensis) share similar sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats for breeding but have different population trends that might be related to winter location. To link breeding and winter ranges, we created isoscapes of deuterium [stable isotope ratio (δ) of deuterium; δ2H] and nitrogen (δ15N) for each species modeled from isotope ratios measured in feathers of 264 Brewer’s and 82 sagebrush sparrows and environmental characteristics at capture locations across their breeding range. We then used feather δ2Hf and δ15Nf measured in 1,029 Brewer’s and 527 sagebrush sparrows captured on winter locations in southwestern United States to assign probable breeding ranges. Intraspecies population mixing from across the breeding range was strong for both Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows on winter ranges. Brewer’s sparrows but not sagebrush sparrows were linked to more northerly breeding locations in the eastern part of their winter range. Winter location was not related to breeding population trends estimated from US Geological Survey Breeding Bird Survey routes for either Brewer’s or sagebrush sparrows. Primary drivers of population dynamics are likely independent for each species; Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows captured at the same winter location did not share predicted breeding locations or population trends. The diffuse migratory connectivity displayed by Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows measured at the coarse spatial resolution in our analysis also suggests that local environments rather than broad regional characteristics are primary drivers of annual population trends.

  10. The influence of eastern North American autumnal migrant monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus L.) on continuously breeding resident monarch populations in southern Florida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knight, Amy; Brower, Lincoln P

    2009-07-01

    In Florida, the eastern North American population of the monarch butterfly exhibits geographic variability in population structure and dynamics. This includes the occurrence of migrants throughout the peninsula during the autumnal migration, occasional overwintering clusters that form along the Gulf Coast, remigrants from Mexico that breed in north-central Florida during the spring, and what have been assumed to be year-round, resident breeding populations in southern Florida. The work reported here focused on two monarch populations west of Miami and addressed four questions: Are there permanent resident populations of monarchs in southern Florida? Do these breed continuously throughout the year? Do they receive northern monarchs moving south during the autumn migration? Do they receive overwintered monarchs returning via Cuba or the Yucatan during the spring remigration from the Mexican overwintering area? Monthly collections and counts of spermatophores in the bursa copulatrices of females established that a resident population of continuously breeding monarchs exists year-round in southern Florida. It was determined through cardenolide fingerprinting that most of the butterflies had bred on the local southern Florida milkweed species, Asclepias curassavica. During the autumn migration period, however, some monarchs had fed on the northern milkweed, Asclepias syriaca. It appears that instead of migrating to Mexico, these individuals travel south through peninsular Florida, break diapause, mate with and become incorporated into the resident breeding populations. None of the monarchs captured in spring had the A. syriaca cardenolide fingerprint, which is evidence against the southern Florida populations receiving overwintered remigrants from Cuba, Central America or Mexico. PMID:19579046

  11. Hierarchical models and the analysis of bird survey information

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, J.R.; Link, W.A.

    2003-01-01

    Management of birds often requires analysis of collections of estimates. We describe a hierarchical modeling approach to the analysis of these data, in which parameters associated with the individual species estimates are treated as random variables, and probability statements are made about the species parameters conditioned on the data. A Markov-Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) procedure is used to fit the hierarchical model. This approach is computer intensive, and is based upon simulation. MCMC allows for estimation both of parameters and of derived statistics. To illustrate the application of this method, we use the case in which we are interested in attributes of a collection of estimates of population change. Using data for 28 species of grassland-breeding birds from the North American Breeding Bird Survey, we estimate the number of species with increasing populations, provide precision-adjusted rankings of species trends, and describe a measure of population stability as the probability that the trend for a species is within a certain interval. Hierarchical models can be applied to a variety of bird survey applications, and we are investigating their use in estimation of population change from survey data.

  12. Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge : Population Estimates of Colonial Birds : 1987 - 1988

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This memorandum discusses the results of population estimates for Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge within the Stillwater Wildlife Management Area. The report...

  13. Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge : Population Estimates of Colonial Birds : 1990

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This memorandum discusses the results of population estimates for Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge within the Stillwater Wildlife Management Area. The report...

  14. Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge : Population Estimates of Colonial Birds : 1986

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This memorandum discusses the results of population estimates for Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge within the Stillwater Wildlife Management Area. The report...

  15. Virginia ESI: BIRDS (Bird Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for wading birds, shorebirds, waterfowl, raptors, diving birds, pelagic birds, passerine birds, and gulls...

  16. Environmental and genetic determinants of innovativeness in a natural population of birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, John L; Cole, Ella F; Reed, Thomas E; Morand-Ferron, Julie

    2016-03-19

    Much of the evidence for the idea that individuals differ in their propensity to innovate and solve new problems has come from studies on captive primates. Increasingly, behavioural ecologists are studying innovativeness in wild populations, and uncovering links with functional behaviour and fitness-related traits. The relative importance of genetic and environmental factors in driving this variation, however, remains unknown. Here, we present the results of the first large-scale study to examine a range of causal factors underlying innovative problem-solving performance (PSP) among 831 great tits (Parus major) temporarily taken into captivity. Analyses show that PSP in this population: (i) was linked to a variety of individual factors, including age, personality and natal origin (immigrant or local-born); (ii) was influenced by natal environment, because individuals had a lower PSP when born in poor-quality habitat, or where local population density was high, leading to cohort effects. Links with many of the individual and environmental factors were present only in some years. In addition, PSP (iii) had little or no measurable heritability, as estimated by a Bayesian animal model; and (iv) was not influenced by maternal effects. Despite previous reports of links between PSP and a range of functional traits in this population, the analyses here suggest that innovativeness had weak if any evolutionary potential. Instead most individual variation was caused by phenotypic plasticity driven by links with other behavioural traits and by environmentally mediated developmental stress. Heritability estimates are population, time and context specific, however, and more studies are needed to determine the generality of these effects. Our results shed light on the causes of innovativeness within populations, and add to the debate on the relative importance of genetic and environmental factors in driving phenotypic variation within populations. PMID:26926275

  17. Environmental and genetic determinants of innovativeness in a natural population of birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, John L; Cole, Ella F; Reed, Thomas E; Morand-Ferron, Julie

    2016-03-19

    Much of the evidence for the idea that individuals differ in their propensity to innovate and solve new problems has come from studies on captive primates. Increasingly, behavioural ecologists are studying innovativeness in wild populations, and uncovering links with functional behaviour and fitness-related traits. The relative importance of genetic and environmental factors in driving this variation, however, remains unknown. Here, we present the results of the first large-scale study to examine a range of causal factors underlying innovative problem-solving performance (PSP) among 831 great tits (Parus major) temporarily taken into captivity. Analyses show that PSP in this population: (i) was linked to a variety of individual factors, including age, personality and natal origin (immigrant or local-born); (ii) was influenced by natal environment, because individuals had a lower PSP when born in poor-quality habitat, or where local population density was high, leading to cohort effects. Links with many of the individual and environmental factors were present only in some years. In addition, PSP (iii) had little or no measurable heritability, as estimated by a Bayesian animal model; and (iv) was not influenced by maternal effects. Despite previous reports of links between PSP and a range of functional traits in this population, the analyses here suggest that innovativeness had weak if any evolutionary potential. Instead most individual variation was caused by phenotypic plasticity driven by links with other behavioural traits and by environmentally mediated developmental stress. Heritability estimates are population, time and context specific, however, and more studies are needed to determine the generality of these effects. Our results shed light on the causes of innovativeness within populations, and add to the debate on the relative importance of genetic and environmental factors in driving phenotypic variation within populations.

  18. The ornament-condition relationship varies with parasite abundance at population level in a female bird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergara, Pablo; Martínez-Padilla, Jesús; Redpath, Stephen M.; Mougeot, Francois

    2011-10-01

    Environmental heterogeneity is expected to create variation in the ornament-condition relationship. This topic has been studied in males with less attention being given to females. Here, we explore inter-population variation in the relationship between the size of a male-like trait, supra-orbital combs, and body mass in female red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus. We used the abundance of the nematode Trichostrongylus tenuis, a parasite with strong negative effects on this species, as a proxy of environmental conditions. We studied six populations over 5 years and showed that the comb size-body mass relationship varied with mean parasite abundance, with stronger ornament-condition relationships in populations with higher parasite infection levels. Our study supports the idea that environmental conditions, and in particular parasite infection levels, may affect the reliability of female ornaments as condition indicators.

  19. Trading up: the fitness consequences of divorce in monogamous birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culina, Antica; Radersma, Reinder; Sheldon, Ben C

    2015-11-01

    Social and genetic mating systems play an important role in natural and sexual selection, as well as in the dynamics of populations. In socially monogamous species different genetic mating patterns appear when individuals mate outside the breeding pair within a breeding season (extra-pair mating) or when they change partners between two breeding seasons (widowing or divorce). Divorce can be defined as having occurred when two previously paired individuals are alive during the next breeding season and at least one of them has re-mated with a new partner. In socially monogamous birds divorce is widespread, but it is not clear whether it is a behavioural adaptation to improve the quality of a mating decision or whether, alternatively, it results as a non-selected consequence of other processes: existing studies suggest a heterogeneous set of results with respect to this central question. This heterogeneity could result from a number of factors, ranging from the methodological approaches used, to population- or species-specific characters. In this review we use phylogenetic meta-analyses to assess the evidence that divorce is adaptive (in terms of breeding success) across 64 species of socially monogamous birds. Second, we explore biological and methodological reasons for the heterogeneity in the results of previous studies. Results of our analyses supported the hypothesis that divorce is, in general, an adaptive behavioural strategy as: (1) divorce is triggered by relatively low breeding success; (2) there is a positive change in breeding success as a result of divorce. More specifically, while controlling for methodological moderators, we show that: (i) earlier stages of breeding are better predictors of divorce than later stages (r = 0.231; 95% CI: 0.061-0.391 for clutch size; similar for laying date); (ii) females benefited from divorce more than males in terms of increasing breeding success between successive breeding attempts, with different stages of the

  20. Trading up: the fitness consequences of divorce in monogamous birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culina, Antica; Radersma, Reinder; Sheldon, Ben C

    2015-11-01

    Social and genetic mating systems play an important role in natural and sexual selection, as well as in the dynamics of populations. In socially monogamous species different genetic mating patterns appear when individuals mate outside the breeding pair within a breeding season (extra-pair mating) or when they change partners between two breeding seasons (widowing or divorce). Divorce can be defined as having occurred when two previously paired individuals are alive during the next breeding season and at least one of them has re-mated with a new partner. In socially monogamous birds divorce is widespread, but it is not clear whether it is a behavioural adaptation to improve the quality of a mating decision or whether, alternatively, it results as a non-selected consequence of other processes: existing studies suggest a heterogeneous set of results with respect to this central question. This heterogeneity could result from a number of factors, ranging from the methodological approaches used, to population- or species-specific characters. In this review we use phylogenetic meta-analyses to assess the evidence that divorce is adaptive (in terms of breeding success) across 64 species of socially monogamous birds. Second, we explore biological and methodological reasons for the heterogeneity in the results of previous studies. Results of our analyses supported the hypothesis that divorce is, in general, an adaptive behavioural strategy as: (1) divorce is triggered by relatively low breeding success; (2) there is a positive change in breeding success as a result of divorce. More specifically, while controlling for methodological moderators, we show that: (i) earlier stages of breeding are better predictors of divorce than later stages (r = 0.231; 95% CI: 0.061-0.391 for clutch size; similar for laying date); (ii) females benefited from divorce more than males in terms of increasing breeding success between successive breeding attempts, with different stages of the

  1. Does stress response predict return rate in a migratory bird species? A study of American redstarts and their non-breeding habitat

    OpenAIRE

    Angelier, Frédéric; Holberton, Rebecca L; Marra, Peter P.

    2009-01-01

    In vertebrates, the adrenocortical stress response activates an emergency life-history stage, which is thought to promote survival by helping individuals escape life-threatening situations. Although the adrenocortical stress response promotes many behavioural and physiological changes, it remains unclear whether this stress response actually translates into higher survival in wild vertebrates. We measured the adrenocortical stress response of non-breeding American redstarts (Setophaga ruticil...

  2. Assessing allowable take of migratory birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runge, M.C.; Sauer, J.R.; Avery, M.L.; Blackwell, B.F.; Koneff, M.D.

    2009-01-01

    Legal removal of migratory birds from the wild occurs for several reasons, including subsistence, sport harvest, damage control, and the pet trade. We argue that harvest theory provides the basis for assessing the impact of authorized take, advance a simplified rendering of harvest theory known as potential biological removal as a useful starting point for assessing take, and demonstrate this approach with a case study of depredation control of black vultures (Coragyps atratus) in Virginia, USA. Based on data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey and other sources, we estimated that the black vulture population in Virginia was 91,190 (95% credible interval = 44,520?212,100) in 2006. Using a simple population model and available estimates of life-history parameters, we estimated the intrinsic rate of growth (rmax) to be in the range 7?14%, with 10.6% a plausible point estimate. For a take program to seek an equilibrium population size on the conservative side of the yield curve, the rate of take needs to be less than that which achieves a maximum sustained yield (0.5 x rmax). Based on the point estimate for rmax and using the lower 60% credible interval for population size to account for uncertainty, these conditions would be met if the take of black vultures in Virginia in 2006 was <3,533 birds. Based on regular monitoring data, allowable harvest should be adjusted annually to reflect changes in population size. To initiate discussion about how this assessment framework could be related to the laws and regulations that govern authorization of such take, we suggest that the Migratory Bird Treaty Act requires only that take of native migratory birds be sustainable in the long-term, that is, sustained harvest rate should be

  3. Comparison of Model Predictions and Laboratory Observations of Transgene Frequencies in Continuously-Breeding Mosquito Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Valerio

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The persistence of transgenes in the environment is a consideration in risk assessments of transgenic organisms. Combining mathematical models that predict the frequency of transgenes and experimental demonstrations can validate the model predictions, or can detect significant biological deviations that were neither apparent nor included as model parameters. In order to assess the correlation between predictions and observations, models were constructed to estimate the frequency of a transgene causing male sexual sterility in simulated populations of a malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae that were seeded with transgenic females at various proportions. Concurrently, overlapping-generation laboratory populations similar to those being modeled were initialized with various starting transgene proportions, and the subsequent proportions of transgenic individuals in populations were determined weekly until the transgene disappeared. The specific transgene being tested contained a homing endonuclease gene expressed in testes, I-PpoI, that cleaves the ribosomal DNA and results in complete male sexual sterility with no effect on female fertility. The transgene was observed to disappear more rapidly than the model predicted in all cases. The period before ovipositions that contained no transgenic progeny ranged from as little as three weeks after cage initiation to as long as 11 weeks.

  4. Population decline is linked to migration route in the Common Cuckoo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hewson, Chris M; Thorup, Kasper; Pearce-Higgins, James W; Atkinson, Philip W

    2016-07-19

    Migratory species are in rapid decline globally. Although most mortality in long-distance migrant birds is thought to occur during migration, evidence of conditions on migration affecting breeding population sizes has been completely lacking. We addressed this by tracking 42 male Common Cuckoos from the rapidly declining UK population during 56 autumn migrations in 2011-14. Uniquely, the birds use two distinct routes to reach the same wintering grounds, allowing assessment of survival during migration independently of origin and destination. Mortality up to completion of the Sahara crossing (the major ecological barrier encountered in both routes) is higher for birds using the shorter route. The proportion of birds using this route strongly correlates with population decline across nine local breeding populations. Knowledge of variability in migratory behaviour and performance linked to robust population change data may therefore be necessary to understand population declines of migratory species and efficiently target conservation resources.

  5. Preserving species populations in the boreal zone in a changing climate: contrasting trends of bird species groups in a protected area network

    OpenAIRE

    Raimo Virkkala; Ari Rajasärkkä

    2012-01-01

    A protected area network should ensure the maintenance of biodiversity. Because of climate change, species ranges are expected to move polewards, causing further demand for the protected area network to be efficient in preserving biota. We compared population changes of different bird species groups according to their habitat preferences in boreal protected areas in Finland on the basis of large-scale censuses carried out in 1981–1999 and in 2000–2009. Population densities of comm...

  6. Recovery of native genetic background in admixed populations using haplotypes, phenotypes, and pedigree information--using Cika cattle as a case breed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simčič, Mojca; Smetko, Anamarija; Sölkner, Johann; Seichter, Doris; Gorjanc, Gregor; Kompan, Dragomir; Medugorac, Ivica

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to obtain unbiased estimates of the diversity parameters, the population history, and the degree of admixture in Cika cattle which represents the local admixed breeds at risk of extinction undergoing challenging conservation programs. Genetic analyses were performed on the genome-wide Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) Illumina Bovine SNP50 array data of 76 Cika animals and 531 animals from 14 reference populations. To obtain unbiased estimates we used short haplotypes spanning four markers instead of single SNPs to avoid an ascertainment bias of the BovineSNP50 array. Genome-wide haplotypes combined with partial pedigree and type trait classification show the potential to improve identification of purebred animals with a low degree of admixture. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated unique genetic identity of Cika animals. Genetic distance matrix presented by rooted Neighbour-Net suggested long and broad phylogenetic connection between Cika and Pinzgauer. Unsupervised clustering performed by the admixture analysis and two-dimensional presentation of the genetic distances between individuals also suggest Cika is a distinct breed despite being similar in appearance to Pinzgauer. Animals identified as the most purebred could be used as a nucleus for a recovery of the native genetic background in the current admixed population. The results show that local well-adapted strains, which have never been intensively managed and differentiated into specific breeds, exhibit large haplotype diversity. They suggest a conservation and recovery approach that does not rely exclusively on the search for the original native genetic background but rather on the identification and removal of common introgressed haplotypes would be more powerful. Successful implementation of such an approach should be based on combining phenotype, pedigree, and genome-wide haplotype data of the breed of interest and a spectrum of reference breeds which potentially have had

  7. Recovery of native genetic background in admixed populations using haplotypes, phenotypes, and pedigree information--using Cika cattle as a case breed.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mojca Simčič

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to obtain unbiased estimates of the diversity parameters, the population history, and the degree of admixture in Cika cattle which represents the local admixed breeds at risk of extinction undergoing challenging conservation programs. Genetic analyses were performed on the genome-wide Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP Illumina Bovine SNP50 array data of 76 Cika animals and 531 animals from 14 reference populations. To obtain unbiased estimates we used short haplotypes spanning four markers instead of single SNPs to avoid an ascertainment bias of the BovineSNP50 array. Genome-wide haplotypes combined with partial pedigree and type trait classification show the potential to improve identification of purebred animals with a low degree of admixture. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated unique genetic identity of Cika animals. Genetic distance matrix presented by rooted Neighbour-Net suggested long and broad phylogenetic connection between Cika and Pinzgauer. Unsupervised clustering performed by the admixture analysis and two-dimensional presentation of the genetic distances between individuals also suggest Cika is a distinct breed despite being similar in appearance to Pinzgauer. Animals identified as the most purebred could be used as a nucleus for a recovery of the native genetic background in the current admixed population. The results show that local well-adapted strains, which have never been intensively managed and differentiated into specific breeds, exhibit large haplotype diversity. They suggest a conservation and recovery approach that does not rely exclusively on the search for the original native genetic background but rather on the identification and removal of common introgressed haplotypes would be more powerful. Successful implementation of such an approach should be based on combining phenotype, pedigree, and genome-wide haplotype data of the breed of interest and a spectrum of reference breeds which

  8. 不同林龄次生林繁殖鸟类群落结构1)%Community Structure of Breeding Bird in Secondary Forests with Different Stand Ages

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赵欣; 姜云垒; 尚伟平; 姚纪元; 李时; 王海涛

    2015-01-01

    采用样线调查法对40~80 a不同林龄次生林繁殖鸟类群落结构开展了研究。结果表明:随着林龄的增加,次生林繁殖鸟类群落组成有显著差异,不同林龄次生林的优势种不同。不同林龄鸟类群落的Simpson多样性指数差异极显著,Shannon-Wiener多样性指数差异显著,二者均呈现早期上升、中期下降、后期增加并趋于稳定的变化趋势。 Pielou均匀度指数差异不显著。40 a次生林与50 a次生林的繁殖鸟类共有种最少,相似性系数最低,70 a次生林与80 a次生林的繁殖鸟类共有种最多,相似性系数最高。%We investigated the breeding bird community structure in five secondary forests with different stand ages ( 40-80 a) using the line intercept method.The the community species composition varied significantly between five secondary forests with different stand ages, and the dominant species were different.Simpson bird diversity index and Shannon-Wiener bird diversity index in forests with different stand ages differed significantly, which all increased at early stage, then declined at medium stage, and became stable at mature stage.The Pielou evenness index of bird communities in forests with different stand ages did not differ significantly, Pielou evenness index increased rapidly at first, then declined slowly, and reached a maximum at 60 a.There were fewest common species and lowest similarity coefficient between the 40-a forest and the 50-a forest;however, there were the most common species and the highest similarity coefficient between 70-a and 80-a forest.

  9. Genomic signatures of near-extinction and rebirth of the crested ibis and other endangered bird species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Shengbin; Li, Bo; Cheng, Cheng;

    2014-01-01

    -East Asia, by 1981 only seven individuals from two breeding pairs remained in the wild. The recovering crested ibis populations thus provide an excellent example for conservation genomics since every individual bird has been recruited for genomic and demographic studies.ResultsUsing high-quality genome...

  10. Experimental evolution of an RNA virus in wild birds: evidence for host-dependent impacts on population structure and competitive fitness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan D Grubaugh

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Within hosts, RNA viruses form populations that are genetically and phenotypically complex. Heterogeneity in RNA virus genomes arises due to error-prone replication and is reduced by stochastic and selective mechanisms that are incompletely understood. Defining how natural selection shapes RNA virus populations is critical because it can inform treatment paradigms and enhance control efforts. We allowed West Nile virus (WNV to replicate in wild-caught American crows, house sparrows and American robins to assess how natural selection shapes RNA virus populations in ecologically relevant hosts that differ in susceptibility to virus-induced mortality. After five sequential passages in each bird species, we examined the phenotype and population diversity of WNV through fitness competition assays and next generation sequencing. We demonstrate that fitness gains occur in a species-specific manner, with the greatest replicative fitness gains in robin-passaged WNV and the least in WNV passaged in crows. Sequencing data revealed that intrahost WNV populations were strongly influenced by purifying selection and the overall complexity of the viral populations was similar among passaged hosts. However, the selective pressures that control WNV populations seem to be bird species-dependent. Specifically, crow-passaged WNV populations contained the most unique mutations (~1.7× more than sparrows, ~3.4× more than robins and defective genomes (~1.4× greater than sparrows, ~2.7× greater than robins, but the lowest average mutation frequency (about equal to sparrows, ~2.6× lower than robins. Therefore, our data suggest that WNV replication in the most disease-susceptible bird species is positively associated with virus mutational tolerance, likely via complementation, and negatively associated with the strength of selection. These differences in genetic composition most likely have distinct phenotypic consequences for the virus populations. Taken together

  11. Monitoring Forsmark - Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Green, Martin [Dept of Biology, Lund Univ., Lund (Sweden)

    2013-03-15

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002 - 2012. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2012 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from 2012 generally follow patterns recorded in earlier years. 2012 was in general a better bird year compared to 2010 and 2011 and most species (82%) showed increasing or stable numbers from 2011 to 2012. Only two species (18%) decreased in numbers between the last two years. All in all, six species (55 %, black-throated diver, honey buzzard, black grouse, ural owl, wryneck and red-backed shrike) show no significant trends since the start of the bird monitoring (2002/2003/2004 depending on species). During this period three species (27 %, white-tailed eagle, osprey and lesser spotted woodpecker) have increased in numbers while just two (18 %, capercaillie and hazelhen) have decreased. A new pair of black-throated divers was discovered in 2012 and seven resident pairs were registered. Breeding success was very good, the second best during the study period. Population development follows the national pattern, but breeding success seems to be better in Forsmark than in the country as a whole. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, and breeding success for ospreys was good. No signs of successful breedings of honey buzzards were recorded, but this may mean little as no detailed monitoring of breeding success is made for this species. The white-tailed eagles had their best breeding year since the start of the SKB bird monitoring, meaning that during the last two years local breeding success has been back at the level recorded before the site investigations started. The three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) again showed somewhat varying patterns between the last two years as well as in the long run. The black grouse increased

  12. Carry-over effects of the social environment on future divorce probability in a wild bird population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culina, Antica; Hinde, Camilla A; Sheldon, Ben C

    2015-10-22

    Initial mate choice and re-mating strategies (infidelity and divorce) influence individual fitness. Both of these should be influenced by the social environment, which determines the number and availability of potential partners. While most studies looking at this relationship take a population-level approach, individual-level responses to variation in the social environment remain largely unstudied. Here, we explore carry-over effects on future mating decisions of the social environment in which the initial mating decision occurred. Using detailed data on the winter social networks of great tits, we tested whether the probability of subsequent divorce, a year later, could be predicted by measures of the social environment at the time of pairing. We found that males that had a lower proportion of female associates, and whose partner ranked lower among these, as well as inexperienced breeders, were more likely to divorce after breeding. We found no evidence that a female's social environment influenced the probability of divorce. Our findings highlight the importance of the social environment that individuals experience during initial pair formation on later pairing outcomes, and demonstrate that such effects can be delayed. Exploring these extended effects of the social environment can yield valuable insights into processes and selective pressures acting upon the mating strategies that individuals adopt. PMID:26468239

  13. 藏鹀的自然历史、威胁和保护%Study on the Tibetan Bunting: Distribution, Population,Breeding Information and Conservation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    居·扎西桑俄; 果洛·周杰

    2013-01-01

    Tibetan Bunting (Emberiza koslowi) is a poorly known bird endemic to eastern Tibetan Plateau. In order to understand its distribution, population and life history, since 2005 a six-year long observation has been conducted around Baiyu of Jiuzhi County, Golok Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province. Results show that the distribution range of Tibetan Bunting is around 3 500 - 4 700 meters above sea level and mainly in Yushu and Golok of Qinghai as well as a small region in A' ba of Sichuan. Compared with previous knowledge, this range is at a higher altitude, and more northeast and restricted. Using line transect method, a stable population of 18 -33 individuals has been identified in a 7. 4 km study site. Besides, nesting, breeding and agonistic behaviors of this group are described in detail. Major threats posed on Tibetan Bunting are found to be predation by carnivores, food insufficiency during winter and eggs being trampled by livestock. Since long-term monitoring has been conducted, we find that the population has been stabilizing through establishing community conserved area and working with local herdsmen on targeted conservation actions.%藏鹀(Emberiza koslowi)是我国青藏高原东部的特有珍稀鸟种,目前关于它的资料非常匮乏.为了解藏鹀的分布、数量和基本生活史特征,促进对于该物种的有效保护,自2005年起以青海省果洛州久治县白玉乡为中心对藏鹀进行了持续6年的观察,并针对其面临的威胁采取了相应的保护措施.结果显示,藏鹀主要分布在青海的玉树、果洛和四川的阿坝一带海拔3 500~4 700 m范围内的适宜栖息地,该分布区比原有认知更靠东北,更为狭小且海拔更高.用样线法开展的藏鹀数量监测,在7.4 km2的调查范围内记录到一个18 ~33只的稳定种群.此外,还对藏鹀的筑巢、育雏和争斗等行为进行了详细描述.食肉动物的捕食、冬季食物缺乏和牲畜踩踏鸟卵是藏鹀面

  14. Climate change and the demographic demise of a hoarding bird living on the edge

    OpenAIRE

    Waite, Thomas A; Strickland, Dan

    2006-01-01

    Population declines along the lower-latitude edge of a species' range may be diagnostic of climate change. We report evidence that climate change has contributed to deteriorating reproductive success in a rapidly declining population of the grey jay (Perisoreus canadensis) at the southern edge of its range. This non-migratory bird of boreal and subalpine forest lives on permanent territories, where it hoards enormous amounts of food for winter and then breeds very early, under still-wintry co...

  15. Biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for all species and subspecies of Australian bird

    OpenAIRE

    Garnett, Stephen T.; Duursma, Daisy E.; Ehmke, Glenn; Guay, Patrick-Jean; Stewart, Alistair; Szabo, Judit K.; Weston, Michael A; Bennett, Simon; Crowley, Gabriel M.; Drynan, David; Dutson, Guy; Fitzherbert, Kate; Donald C Franklin

    2015-01-01

    We introduce a dataset of biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for every species and subspecies of Australian bird, 2056 taxa or populations in total. Version 1 contains 230 fields grouped under the following headings: Taxonomy & nomenclature, Phylogeny, Australian population status, Conservation status, Legal status, Distribution, Morphology, Habitat, Food, Behaviour, Breeding, Mobility and Climate metrics. It is envisaged that the dataset will be updated periodically w...

  16. Molecular detection of hematozoa infections in tundra swans relative to migration patterns and ecological conditions at breeding grounds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew M Ramey

    Full Text Available Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus are broadly distributed in North America, use a wide variety of habitats, and exhibit diverse migration strategies. We investigated patterns of hematozoa infection in three populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska using satellite tracking to infer host movement and molecular techniques to assess the prevalence and genetic diversity of parasites. We evaluated whether migratory patterns and environmental conditions at breeding areas explain the prevalence of blood parasites in migratory birds by contrasting the fit of competing models formulated in an occupancy modeling framework and calculating the detection probability of the top model using Akaike Information Criterion (AIC. We described genetic diversity of blood parasites in each population of swans by calculating the number of unique parasite haplotypes observed. Blood parasite infection was significantly different between populations of Alaska tundra swans, with the highest estimated prevalence occurring among birds occupying breeding areas with lower mean daily wind speeds and higher daily summer temperatures. Models including covariates of wind speed and temperature during summer months at breeding grounds better predicted hematozoa prevalence than those that included annual migration distance or duration. Genetic diversity of blood parasites in populations of tundra swans appeared to be relative to hematozoa prevalence. Our results suggest ecological conditions at breeding grounds may explain differences of hematozoa infection among populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska.

  17. Molecular detection of hematozoa infections in tundra swans relative to migration patterns and ecological conditions at breeding grounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramey, Andrew M.; Ely, Craig R.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Pearce, John M.; Heard, Darryl J.

    2012-01-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) are broadly distributed in North America, use a wide variety of habitats, and exhibit diverse migration strategies. We investigated patterns of hematozoa infection in three populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska using satellite tracking to infer host movement and molecular techniques to assess the prevalence and genetic diversity of parasites. We evaluated whether migratory patterns and environmental conditions at breeding areas explain the prevalence of blood parasites in migratory birds by contrasting the fit of competing models formulated in an occupancy modeling framework and calculating the detection probability of the top model using Akaike Information Criterion (AIC). We described genetic diversity of blood parasites in each population of swans by calculating the number of unique parasite haplotypes observed. Blood parasite infection was significantly different between populations of Alaska tundra swans, with the highest estimated prevalence occurring among birds occupying breeding areas with lower mean daily wind speeds and higher daily summer temperatures. Models including covariates of wind speed and temperature during summer months at breeding grounds better predicted hematozoa prevalence than those that included annual migration distance or duration. Genetic diversity of blood parasites in populations of tundra swans appeared to be relative to hematozoa prevalence. Our results suggest ecological conditions at breeding grounds may explain differences of hematozoa infection among populations of tundra swans that breed in Alaska.

  18. Analysis of genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from China, India and the US using simple sequence repeat markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hui; Khera, Pawan; Huang, Bingyan; Yuan, Mei; Katam, Ramesh; Zhuang, Weijian; Harris-Shultz, Karen; Moore, Kim M; Culbreath, Albert K; Zhang, Xinyou; Varshney, Rajeev K; Xie, Lianhui; Guo, Baozhu

    2016-05-01

    Cultivated peanut is grown worldwide as rich-source of oil and protein. A broad genetic base is needed for cultivar improvement. The objectives of this study were to develop highly informative simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers and to assess the genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from different breeding programs in China, India and the US. A total of 111 SSR markers were selected for this study, resulting in a total of 472 alleles. The mean values of gene diversity and polymorphic information content (PIC) were 0.480 and 0.429, respectively. Country-wise analysis revealed that alleles per locus in three countries were similar. The mean gene diversity in the US, China and India was 0.363, 0.489 and 0.47 with an average PIC of 0.323, 0.43 and 0.412, respectively. Genetic analysis using the STRUCTURE divided these peanut lines into two populations (P1, P2), which was consistent with the dendrogram based on genetic distance (G1, G2) and the clustering of principal component analysis. The groupings were related to peanut market types and the geographic origin with a few admixtures. The results could be used by breeding programs to assess the genetic diversity of breeding materials to broaden the genetic base and for molecular genetics studies.

  19. Analysis of genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from China, India and the US using simple sequence repeat markers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hui Wang; Xinyou Zhang; Rajeev K. Varshney; Lianhui Xie; Baozhu Guo; Pawan Khera; Bingyan Huang; Mei Yuan; Ramesh Katam; Weijian Zhuang; Karen Harris-Shultz; Kim M. Moore; Albert K. Culbreath

    2016-01-01

    Cultivated peanut is grown worldwide as rich-source of oil and protein. A broad genetic base is needed for cultivar improvement. The objectives of this study were to develop highly informative simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers and to assess the genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from different breeding programs in China, India and the US. A total of 111 SSR markers were selected for this study, resulting in a total of 472 alleles. The mean values of gene diversity and polymorphic information content (PIC) were 0.480 and 0.429, respectively. Country-wise analysis revealed that alleles per locus in three countries were similar. The mean gene diversity in the US, China and India was 0.363, 0.489 and 0.47 with an average PIC of 0.323, 0.43 and 0.412, respectively. Genetic analysis using the STRUCTURE divided these peanut lines into two populations (P1, P2), which was consistent with the dendro-gram based on genetic distance (G1, G2) and the clustering of principal component analysis. The groupings were related to peanut market types and the geographic origin with a few admixtures. The results could be used by breeding programs to assess the genetic diversity of breeding materials to broaden the genetic base and for molecular genetics studies.

  20. Analysis of genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from China, India and the US using simple sequence repeat markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hui; Khera, Pawan; Huang, Bingyan; Yuan, Mei; Katam, Ramesh; Zhuang, Weijian; Harris-Shultz, Karen; Moore, Kim M; Culbreath, Albert K; Zhang, Xinyou; Varshney, Rajeev K; Xie, Lianhui; Guo, Baozhu

    2016-05-01

    Cultivated peanut is grown worldwide as rich-source of oil and protein. A broad genetic base is needed for cultivar improvement. The objectives of this study were to develop highly informative simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers and to assess the genetic diversity and population structure of peanut cultivars and breeding lines from different breeding programs in China, India and the US. A total of 111 SSR markers were selected for this study, resulting in a total of 472 alleles. The mean values of gene diversity and polymorphic information content (PIC) were 0.480 and 0.429, respectively. Country-wise analysis revealed that alleles per locus in three countries were similar. The mean gene diversity in the US, China and India was 0.363, 0.489 and 0.47 with an average PIC of 0.323, 0.43 and 0.412, respectively. Genetic analysis using the STRUCTURE divided these peanut lines into two populations (P1, P2), which was consistent with the dendrogram based on genetic distance (G1, G2) and the clustering of principal component analysis. The groupings were related to peanut market types and the geographic origin with a few admixtures. The results could be used by breeding programs to assess the genetic diversity of breeding materials to broaden the genetic base and for molecular genetics studies. PMID:26178804

  1. The Effects of Both Recent and Long-Term Selection and Genetic Drift Are Readily Evident in North American Barley Breeding Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana M. Poets

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Barley was introduced to North America ∼400 yr ago but adaptation to modern production environments is more recent. Comparisons of allele frequencies among growth habits and spike (inflorescence types in North America indicate that significant genetic differentiation has accumulated in a relatively short evolutionary time span. Allele frequency differentiation is greatest among barley with two-row vs. six-row spikes, followed by spring vs. winter growth habit. Large changes in allele frequency among breeding programs suggest a major contribution of genetic drift and linked selection on genetic variation. Despite this, comparisons of 3613 modern North American cultivated barley breeding lines that differ for spike-type and growth habit permit the discovery of 142 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP outliers putatively linked to targets of selection. For example, SNPs within the Cbf4, Ppd-H1, and Vrn-H1 loci, which have previously been associated with agronomically adaptive phenotypes, are identified as outliers. Analysis of extended haplotype sharing identifies genomic regions shared within and among breeding populations, suggestive of a number of genomic regions subject to recent selection. Finally, we are able to identify recent bouts of gene flow between breeding populations that could point to the sharing of agronomically adaptive variation. These results are supported by pedigrees and breeders’ understanding of germplasm sharing.

  2. 50 CFR 15.24 - Permits for cooperative breeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Permits for cooperative breeding. 15.24... PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.24 Permits for cooperative breeding. (a) Application requirements for permits for cooperative breeding....

  3. Maryland ESI: BIRDS (Bird Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for wading birds, shorebirds, waterfowl, raptors, diving birds, seabirds, passerine birds, and gulls and...

  4. Alabama ESI: BIRDS (Bird Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for wading birds, shorebirds, waterfowl, raptors, diving birds, seabirds, passerine birds, gulls, and...

  5. Clock gene variation is associated with breeding phenology and maybe under directional selection in the migratory barn swallow.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuela Caprioli

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In diverse taxa, photoperiodic responses that cause seasonal physiological and behavioural shifts are controlled by genes, including the vertebrate Clock orthologues, that encode for circadian oscillator mechanisms. While the genetic network behind circadian rhythms is well described, relatively few reports exist of the phenological consequences of and selection on Clock genes in the wild. Here, we investigated variation in breeding phenology in relation to Clock genetic diversity in a long-distance migratory bird, the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In a sample of 922 adult barn swallows from a single population breeding in Italy we found one very common (Q(7 and three rare (Q(5, Q(6, Q(8 length variants of a functionally significant polyglutamine repeat. Rare (2.9% Q(7/Q(8 heterozygous females, but not males, bred significantly later than common (91.5% Q(7/Q(7 females, consistent with the expectation that 'long' alleles cause late breeding, as observed in a resident population of another bird species. Because breeding date depends on arrival date from migration, present results suggest that the association between breeding date and Clock might be mediated by migration phenology. In addition, fecundity selection appears to be operating against Q(7/Q(8 because late migrating/breeding swallows have fewer clutches per season, and late breeding has additional negative selection effects via reduced offspring longevity. Genotype frequencies varied marginally non-significantly with age, as Q(7/Q(8 frequency showed a 4-fold reduction in old individuals. This result suggests negative viability selection against Q(7/Q(8, possibly mediated by costs of late breeding. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This is the first study of migratory birds showing an association between breeding phenology and Clock genotype and suggesting that negative selection occurs on a phenologically deviant genotype. Low polymorphism at Clock may

  6. Birds and Aircraft on Midway Islands, 1959-63 Investigations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, C.S.

    1966-01-01

    At Midway Naval Station, 1.100 miles west-northwest of Honolulu, military aircraft collide with flying albatrosses at the rate of about 300 to 400 per year. One aircraft out of every five that hits an albatross on takeoff either aborts (stops before it is airborne), or dumps fuel and returns for appraisal of damage. About 70,000 pairs of Laysan albatrosses and 7,000 pairs of blackfooted albatrosses nest at Midway in any given year. The population is declining. Two-thirds or more of the birds of breeding age nest each year. The minimum breeding age recorded is 5 years (each species), but many individuals do not nest until at least 7 years of age. Young birds begin to return to Midway at 3 years of age and are found more frequently as breeding age approaches. They come ashore more frequently in March and April (the high bird strike months) than in midwinter. Even in midwinter the number of 'walkers' (birds not on nests) may comprise more than 40 percent of the albatrosses present on Sand Island, Midway. Maximum longevity of the Laysan albatross is believed to exceed 40 years; 6 out of 99 birds banded as breeding adults (7+ years old) were still alive 24 years after banding. Control methods tested experimentally include disturbance, gunfire, other sounds, radar beams, smoke, odors, destruction of nests, eggs, chicks, and adults, moving of birds, eggs, and chicks, erection of obstacles to flight, and habitat management. Habitat management (leveling and hardsurfacing of shoulders of runways) has been the most effective. Albatrosses were counted over the runways at 10 locations in 1957, 1958, and 1960 to determine the effects of wind direction, wind speed, and topography on the numbers of flying birds. Birds were most concentrated in areas where rising air currents were created as winds blew against dunes or tall trees. Soaring and strike rate both increased with greater wind speeds. There was a highly significant correlation between strike frequency and wind direction

  7. Construction of nesting islands and its effects on California gull populations at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — California gulls can be expected to increase at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge regardless of the addition of nesting islands. Unlimited nesting habitat and...

  8. The relationship between the fluctuations of bird populations and the salinities of ponds in South San Francisco Bay

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report summarizes a bi-monthly census of salinities and bird numbers taken in the salt evaporation ponds on the San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. A...

  9. Genetic variability and diversity of corn breeding material originating from domestic and foreign populations determined on the basis of biochemical-genetical markers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zlokolica Marija Ž.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Isozymes can serve as genetic markers and their number should be large enough in order to make the coverage of genomes as complete as possible and in order to use these methods for gene marking for required agronomic traits. These markers are the products of 21 mapped genes, which is relatively reliable number for their application in mapping for certain agronomic traits. Genetic variability and diversity are significant for populations and for selfpolinated lines as basic material in breeding and creation of new corn hybrids. For that reason, several groups of corn populations of different origin were analyzed. Two groups of Yugoslav populations, Italian, Portuguese and French collections were assessed on the basis of detected alleles of 21 loci and standard genetic distances between genotypes. Yugoslav corn collections had shown high heterozygosity, on the basis of isozymes as gene markers. Genetic diversity of Italian populations was pronounced on the basis of some loci, and the Portuguese populations had more polymorphic and more heterozygous loci than French populations Inter-genetic variability between populations and their geographical location are very important in breeding crops for creation of heterosis.

  10. Effects of breed and retained heterosis on milk yield and 200-day weight in advanced generations of composite populations of beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1992-08-01

    Retained heterosis in F2 cows nursing F3 progeny was evaluated in 3-, 4-, and greater than or equal to 5-yr-old cows. Traits evaluated included milk yield at three stages of lactation and 200-d weight of progeny. Breed effects were evaluated in the nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 B, 1/4 C, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Breed effects were significant for 12-h milk yield, estimated 200-d milk yield, and 200-d weight of progeny. Herefords were lowest (P less than .05) for 12-h milk yield and estimated 200-d milk yield, and Braunvieh produced significantly more milk than all breed groups except Pinzgauer and Simmental, for which the difference approached significance. The correlation among breed group means (nine parental breeds and three composites) for 12-h milk yield with 200-d weight of progeny was .91. When 200-d weight was adjusted to a common estimated 200-d milk yield, Hereford, Angus, Red Poll, and Limousin did not differ (P greater than .05); all were significantly lighter than Braunvieh, Pinzgauer, Gelbvieh, Simmental, and Charolais, which did not differ (P greater than .05) from each other.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  11. Why birds with deferred sexual maturity are sedentary on islands: a systematic review.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Ferrer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Island faunas have played central roles in the development of evolutionary biology and ecology. Birds are among the most studied organisms on islands, in part because of their dispersal powers linked to migration. Even so, we lack of information about differences in the movement ecology of island versus mainland populations of birds. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we present a new general pattern indicating that large birds with deferred sexual maturity are sedentary on islands, and that they become so even when they are migratory on the mainland. Density-dependent variation in the age at first breeding affects the survivorship of insular populations and this, in turn, affects the movement ecology of large birds. Because density-dependent variation in the age of first breeding is critical to the long-term survival of small isolated populations of long-lived species, migratory forms can successfully colonize islands only if they become sedentary once there. Analyses of the movement ecology of continental and insular populations of 314 species of raptors, 113 species of Ciconiiformes and 136 species of passerines, along with individual-based population simulations confirm this prediction. CONCLUSIONS: This finding has several consequences for speciation, colonization and survival of small isolated population of species with deferred sexual maturity.

  12. Blood lead concentrations in Alaskan tundra swans: linking breeding and wintering areas with satellite telemetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ely, Craig R.; Franson, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) like many waterfowl species are susceptible to lead (Pb) poisoning, and Pb-induced mortality has been reported from many areas of their wintering range. Little is known however about Pb levels throughout the annual cycle of tundra swans, especially during summer when birds are on remote northern breeding areas where they are less likely to be exposed to anthropogenic sources of Pb. Our objective was to document summer Pb levels in tundra swans throughout their breeding range in Alaska to determine if there were population-specific differences in blood Pb concentrations that might pose a threat to swans and to humans that may consume them. We measured blood Pb concentrations in tundra swans at five locations in Alaska, representing birds that winter in both the Pacific Flyway and Atlantic Flyway. We also marked swans at each location with satellite transmitters and coded neck bands, to identify staging and wintering sites and determine if winter site use correlated with summer Pb concentrations. Blood Pb levels were generally low (return migration to Alaska, rather than on the summer breeding grounds. Blood Pb levels varied significantly across the five breeding areas, with highest concentrations in birds on the North Slope of Alaska (wintering in the Atlantic Flyway), and lowest in birds from the lower Alaska Peninsula that rarely migrate south for winter.

  13. Accuracy of genomic selection for age at puberty in a multi-breed population of tropically adapted beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farah, M M; Swan, A A; Fortes, M R S; Fonseca, R; Moore, S S; Kelly, M J

    2016-02-01

    Genomic selection is becoming a standard tool in livestock breeding programs, particularly for traits that are hard to measure. Accuracy of genomic selection can be improved by increasing the quantity and quality of data and potentially by improving analytical methods. Adding genotypes and phenotypes from additional breeds or crosses often improves the accuracy of genomic predictions but requires specific methodology. A model was developed to incorporate breed composition estimated from genotypes into genomic selection models. This method was applied to age at puberty data in female beef cattle (as estimated from age at first observation of a corpus luteum) from a mix of Brahman and Tropical Composite beef cattle. In this dataset, the new model incorporating breed composition did not increase the accuracy of genomic selection. However, the breeding values exhibited slightly less bias (as assessed by deviation of regression of phenotype on genomic breeding values from the expected value of 1). Adding additional Brahman animals to the Tropical Composite analysis increased the accuracy of genomic predictions and did not affect the accuracy of the Brahman predictions. PMID:26490440

  14. Mapping global diversity patterns for migratory birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somveille, Marius; Manica, Andrea; Butchart, Stuart H M; Rodrigues, Ana S L

    2013-01-01

    Nearly one in five bird species has separate breeding and overwintering distributions, and the regular migrations of these species cause a substantial seasonal redistribution of avian diversity across the world. However, despite its ecological importance, bird migration has been largely ignored in studies of global avian biodiversity, with few studies having addressed it from a macroecological perspective. Here, we analyse a dataset on the global distribution of the world's birds in order to examine global spatial patterns in the diversity of migratory species, including: the seasonal variation in overall species diversity due to migration; the contribution of migratory birds to local bird diversity; and the distribution of narrow-range and threatened migratory birds. Our analyses reveal a striking asymmetry between the Northern and Southern hemispheres, evident in all of the patterns investigated. The highest migratory bird diversity was found in the Northern Hemisphere, with high inter-continental turnover in species composition between breeding and non-breeding seasons, and extensive regions (at high latitudes) where migratory birds constitute the majority of the local avifauna. Threatened migratory birds are concentrated mainly in Central and Southern Asia, whereas narrow-range migratory species are mainly found in Central America, the Himalayas and Patagonia. Overall, global patterns in the diversity of migratory birds indicate that bird migration is mainly a Northern Hemisphere phenomenon. The asymmetry between the Northern and Southern hemispheres could not have easily been predicted from the combined results of regional scale studies, highlighting the importance of a global perspective. PMID:23951037

  15. Mapping global diversity patterns for migratory birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marius Somveille

    Full Text Available Nearly one in five bird species has separate breeding and overwintering distributions, and the regular migrations of these species cause a substantial seasonal redistribution of avian diversity across the world. However, despite its ecological importance, bird migration has been largely ignored in studies of global avian biodiversity, with few studies having addressed it from a macroecological perspective. Here, we analyse a dataset on the global distribution of the world's birds in order to examine global spatial patterns in the diversity of migratory species, including: the seasonal variation in overall species diversity due to migration; the contribution of migratory birds to local bird diversity; and the distribution of narrow-range and threatened migratory birds. Our analyses reveal a striking asymmetry between the Northern and Southern hemispheres, evident in all of the patterns investigated. The highest migratory bird diversity was found in the Northern Hemisphere, with high inter-continental turnover in species composition between breeding and non-breeding seasons, and extensive regions (at high latitudes where migratory birds constitute the majority of the local avifauna. Threatened migratory birds are concentrated mainly in Central and Southern Asia, whereas narrow-range migratory species are mainly found in Central America, the Himalayas and Patagonia. Overall, global patterns in the diversity of migratory birds indicate that bird migration is mainly a Northern Hemisphere phenomenon. The asymmetry between the Northern and Southern hemispheres could not have easily been predicted from the combined results of regional scale studies, highlighting the importance of a global perspective.

  16. Breeding ecology of ground tits in northeastern Tibetan plateau, with special reference to cooperative breeding system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xin LU, Ran HUO, Yang LI, Wenbo LIAO, Chen WANG

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Data on breeding ecology of a color-band marked population of the ground tit Parus humilis were collected in north Qinghai on the Tibetan plateau, during 2008 and 2009. In spring the birds excavated 0.8-3.2 m long nesting burrows under the ground. First-egg laying occurred between late April and late June during which a pair produced one brood. Incubation was done by female alone for 15-16 days and nestling-feeding by both sexes and helpers in any for 23-25 days. Average brood size at fledging was 5.8 (± 1.4 SD, 3-8 and all the 27 observed nesting attempts fledged at least one young. At the population level, brood sex ratio did not differ from 1:1. The birds are a territory-living resident, with annual resight rates being 48% (22 of 46 in adult breeders and 10% (7 of 67 in yearlings. Pairs were socially monogamous, of which 23% (9 of 40 contained one and sometimes two male helpers, most likely being philopatric sons of the breeders. The formation of cooperative groups is similar to the population in central Tibet but differs from that in south Guansu where breeding ground tits exhibit a high level of annual turnover [Current Zoology 57 (6: 751–757, 2011].

  17. Breeding ecology of ground tits in northeastern Tibetan plateau, with special reference to cooperative breeding system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xin LU; Ran HUO; Yang LI; Wenbo LIAO; Chen WANG

    2011-01-01

    Data on breeding ecology of a color-band marked population of the ground tit Parus humilis were collected in north Qinghai on the Tibetan plateau,during 2008 and 2009.In spring the birds excavated 0.8-3.2 m long nesting burrows under the ground.First-egg laying occurred between late April and late June during which a pair produced one brood.Incubation was done by female alone for 15-16 days and nestling-feeding by both sexes and helpers in any for 23-25 days.Average brood size at fledging was 5.8 (± 1.4 SD,3-8) and all the 27 observed nesting attempts fledged at least one young.At the population level,brood sex ratio did not differ from 1∶1.The birds are a territory-living resident,with annual resight rates being 48% (22 of 46) in adult breeders and 10% (7 of 67) in yearlings.Pairs were socially monogamous,of which 23% (9 of 40) contained one and sometimes two male helpers,most likely being philopatric sons of the breeders.The formation of cooperative groups is similar to the population in central Tibet but differs from that in south Guansu where breeding ground tits exhibit a high level of annual turnover [Current Zoology 57 (6):751-757,2011].

  18. Windturbines and meadow birds in Germany - results of a 7 years BACI-study and a literature review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reichenbach, Marc; Steinborn, Hanjo

    2011-07-01

    Full text: In many parts of Germany meadow birds - either breeding or staging - are the species most affected by wind farms planned in open agricultural areas. A 7 year BACI-study (before-after-control-impact) in the south of East Frisia, Lower Saxony, investigated the influence of wind turbines on several meadow bird species. The parameters analysed comprised population trends, spatial distribution and behaviour in relation to turbine distance, breeding success as well as the influence of certain habitat parameters like type of agricultural use and the distance to woods and hedges. The results show, that breeding birds are generally less sensitive to wind turbines than staging birds. Significant reductions of breeding lapwing density occurred only up to a distance of 100 m. Curlews however showed a reduction of resting and grooming behaviour up to a distance of 250 m. Other species like meadow pipit, skylark and stonechat showed no indications of displacement. An impact of wind turbines on breeding success could not be detected. Breeding lapwings showed a strong preference for certain types of crops, which led to spatial aggregations irrespective of turbine proximity. In staging birds a much more obvious displacement up to about 400 m could be detected. The results are consistent with a number of other German studies on possible displacement effects in different bird species. Lapwing and skylark are among the best studied species whereas staging geese tend to be the most sensitive ones. In conclusion the siting of wind farms must not only be guided by occurrence of endangered species named on national or regional Red Lists but also by the species-specific sensitivity against the disturbance effects of wind turbines. (Author)

  19. Radionuclides and the birds at Ravenglass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, V P

    1991-01-01

    Since 1983, concern has been expressed about the apparent decline in numbers of birds in the Ravenglass estuary in west Cumbria, particularly of the black-headed gull colony on the Drigg dunes, and suggestions have been made that this decline might be due to excessive radiation in the birds' food and their general environment. Twelve species of marine invertebrates from Ravenglass, most of them known to be important foods for birds, were analysed, and further samples were taken from sites along the west Cumbrian coast. None of these samples showed excessive contamination with any of the radionuclides analysed. Analysis of a sample of bird carcasses from the areas showed oystercatchers (Haematopus ostralegus) and shelduck (Tadorna tadorna) to have some of the highest concentrations of (137)Cs in their tissues; yet their breeding success and populations were not affected. Black-headed gulls, on the other hand, were found to be feeding mainly inland, and were the least contaminated with radionuclides of all the birds at Ravenglass, yet this species and its breeding success were in decline. Calculations of the total dose equivalent rate to the whole body of the most contaminated black-headed gull amounted to 9.8 x 10(-4) mSvh(-1) (approximately equal to 8.4 x 10(-4) mGy h(-1), whole body absorbed dose rate), and the background exposure dose was of the order of 8.3 x 10(-4) mGy h(-1). As a minimum chronic dose of 1000 mGy day(-1) has been found necessary to retard growth of nestling birds, and 9600 mGy over 20 days of incubation to cause the death of 50% of embryos in black-headed gulls' eggs, the concentrations of radionuclides in the foods, body tissues and general environment were at least three orders of magnitude too low to have had any effect. The more likely cause of the desertion of the gullery was the combination of an uncontrolled fox population, the severest outbreak of myxomatosis amongst the rabbits since 1954 and the driest May-July period on record, all

  20. Evaluating models of population process in a threatened population of Steller’s eiders: A retrospective approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-10-11

    The Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders (Polysticta stelleri) was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 1997 in response to perceived declines in abundance throughout their breeding and nesting range. Aerial surveys suggest the breeding population is small and highly variable in number, with zero birds counted in 5 of the last 25 years. Research was conducted to evaluate competing population process models of Alaskan-breeding Steller’s eiders through comparison of model projections to aerial survey data. To evaluate model efficacy and estimate demographic parameters, a Bayesian state-space modeling framework was used and each model was fit to counts from the annual aerial surveys, using sequential importance sampling and resampling. The results strongly support that the Alaskan breeding population experiences population level nonbreeding events and is open to exchange with the larger Russian-Pacific breeding population. Current recovery criteria for the Alaskan breeding population rely heavily on the ability to estimate population viability. The results of this investigation provide an informative model of the population process that can be used to examine future population states and assess the population in terms of the current recovery and reclassification criteria.

  1. Ambient temperature effects on photo induced gonadal cycles and hormonal secretion patterns in Great Tits from three different breeding latitudes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverin, Bengt; Wingfield, John; Stokkan, Karl-Arne; Massa, Renato; Järvinen, Antero; Andersson, Nils-Ake; Lambrechts, Marcel; Sorace, Alberto; Blomqvist, Donald

    2008-06-01

    The present study determines how populations of Great Tits (Parus major) breeding in southern, mid and northern European latitudes have adjusted their reproductive endocrinology to differences in the ambient temperature during the gonadal cycle. A study based on long-term breeding data, using the Colwell predictability model, showed that the start of the breeding season has a high predictability ( approximately 0.8-0.9) at all latitudes, and that the environmental information factor (I(e)) progressively decreased from mid Italy (I(e)>4) to northern Finland (I(e)breeding season with decreasing latitude. This hypothesis was verified by exposing photosensitive Great Tits from northern Norway, southern Sweden and northern Italy to sub-maximal photo-stimulatory day lengths (13L:11D) under two different ambient temperature regimes (+4 degrees C and +20 degrees C). Changes in testicular size, plasma levels of LH and testosterone were measured. The main results were: (1) Initial testicular growth rate, as well as LH secretion, was affected by temperature in the Italian, but not in birds from the two Scandinavian populations. (2) Maximum testicular size, maximum LH and testosterone levels were maintained for a progressively shorter period of time with increasing latitude, regardless of whether the birds were kept on a low or a high ambient temperature. (3) In birds from all latitudes, the development of photorefractoriness, as indicated by testicular regression and a decrease in plasma levels of LH and testosterone, started much earlier (with the exception for LH Great Tits from northern Scandinavia) when kept on +20 degrees C than when kept on +4 degrees C. The prolonging effects of a low temperature was more pronounced in Mediterranean birds, than in birds from Scandinavia, and more pronounced in Great Tits from southern Scandinavia than in Great Tits from northern Scandinavia. Ecological implications of the results are discussed, as well as possible impact of global

  2. Post–breeding movements and migration patterns of western populations of common quail (Coturnix coturnix: from knowledge to hunting management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodríguez–Teijeiro, J. D.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the patterns of post–breeding movements of the common quail (Coturnix coturnix in the Iberian peninsula with the aim of describing its migratory phenology and some physiological features of individuals. This information is needed to adjust hunting seasons in an optimal way. We worked with two data–sets: a captures made in a non–breeding site (Garraf from August to October in 2009 and 2010; b post–breeding recoveries of individuals ringed in Europe and recaptured in Spain between 1933 and 2005. The results showed that post–breeding movements in Garraf occur in two waves: a first wave that occurs around 10 VIII and is mainly composed of non–sexually active yearlings that do not correspond physiologically to migrants, and a second much more intense wave, which occurs around 17 IX and is mainly composed of non–sexually active migrant yearlings. The hunting season in Spain takes place mainly during the first wave, preserving the passage of migrant individuals from Spain and other European countries. Information on the post–breeding movements in other Spanish regions and other European countries where the common quail is a popular game species would improve timing between the hunting season and migration by providing more precise recommendations for hunting management.

  3. Who are we feeding? Asymmetric individual use of surplus food resources in an insular population of the endangered Egyptian vulture Neophron percnopterus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Sophie García-Heras

    Full Text Available Supplementary feeding stations, or "vulture restaurants", are common conservation management tools. While a number of studies have investigated the consequences of surplus food on the population dynamics of scavengers, relatively little is known about the effects of such practices at the individual level. Within the long-term monitored breeding population of Canarian Egyptian vultures (Neophron percnopterus majorensis we investigated individual bird's patterns of use of a supplementary feeding station at Fuerteventura (Canary Islands, over the course of breeding (2001, 2002; 2004-2011 and non-breeding seasons (2000-2010. Our results show that during the breeding season the individual use of the supplementary feeding station was inversely related to the distance to the breeding territory, which suggests the existence of central-place foraging constraints. In addition, larger birds of poor body-condition and individuals that ultimately failed to fledge young were detected more frequently at the feeding station. During the non-breeding season, and because most breeding birds abandoned the breeding territories, the overall abundance of Egyptian vultures at the feeding station grew. Moreover, the only variable increasing the probability of presence of individuals was poor body condition so that birds with lower wing residual visited the feeding station more frequently. Supplementary feeding may benefit individuals who would otherwise have been subject to selective pressures. From our results it follows that this conservation strategy must be used with caution because it can have consequences on an individual level and thus potentially affect the viability of endangered populations.

  4. Genetic Diversity of Old Chicken Breeds Kept in Poland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabio Maretto

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to compare the genetic variation of five local chicken breeds reared in Poland. Twenty-seven microsatellite markers were investigated in 138 birds belonging to five breeds: Miniature Cochin (MCO, Gold Italian (GI, Green Legged Partridge (GLP, Silver Italian (SI and White Leghorn (WL. One hundred eighty five alleles were detected in the overall population, with a mean number of 6.85 ± 3.32 alleles per locus. For the local breeds, the observed and expected heterozygosity ranged from a minimum of 0.287 to a maximum of 0.458 and from 0.397 to 0.499 for the GI and SI breeds, respectively. The overall population heterozygote deficiency was 0.430, the average Wright’s inbreeding coefficient (FIS was 0.061 and the heterozygote deficiency due to breed subdivision was 0.393. Wright’s fixation index was slightly positive for all breeds excluding MCO (FIS = -0.476 and the estimated molecular inbreeding (fij within breed ranged from 0.296 (GLP and SI to 0.361 (WL evidencing limited coancestry. Mean allelic richness, obtained with rarefaction method based on sixteen observations, was 2.12 being the WL the less variable (1.79. Tomiuk and Loeschcke’s DTL genetic distance values were used to draw a neighbornet network which separated the cluster made of MCO and GLP from the cluster of GI, WL and SI. The results arising from our microsatellites analysis represent a starting point for the valorization of these local Polish chicken breeds for monitoring and preserving their genetic variability.

  5. Metals, Parasites, and Environmental Conditions Affecting Breeding Populations of Spotted Salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) in Northern Arkansas, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMali, Heather M; Trauth, Stanley E; Bouldin, Jennifer L

    2016-06-01

    The spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) is indigenous to northern Arkansas, and several breeding sites are known to exist in the region. Spotted salamanders (n = 17) were collected and examined for parasites and only three females harbored nematodes (Physaloptera spp.). Chronic aquatic bioassays were conducted using water collected from eight breeding ponds during different hydroperiod events. No lethal or sublethal effects were measured in Ceriodaphnia dubia; however, decreased growth and survival were seen in Pimephales promelas. Aqueous, sediment, and salamander hepatic samples were analyzed for As, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Ni. Metal analysis revealed possible increased metal exposure following precipitation, with greatest metal concentrations measured in sediment samples. Hepatic metal concentrations were similar in parasitized and non-parasitized individuals, and greatest Pb concentrations were measured following normal precipitation events. Determining environmental stressors of amphibians, especially during their breeding and subsequent larval life stage, is imperative to improve species conservation. PMID:26886425

  6. ON CORRELATING BIRD MIGRATION TRAJECTORY WITH CLIMATE CHANGES

    OpenAIRE

    Oleinik, Janaina; de Macedo, Jose Antonio Fernandes; Yuanjian, Wang Zufferey

    2009-01-01

    Climate changes are expected to affect bird migration in several aspects including timing changes, breeding and migration orientation. The correlation analysis of several climate conditions (e.g. temperature, wind, humidity, etc) and bird migration trajectory is the key for explaining bird behavior during migration. Moreover, the resulting correlation can be used for predicting new bird behavior according to climate changes. In this paper we propose an integrated solution for correlating bird...

  7. Stress hormones in relation to breeding status and territory location in colonial king penguin: a role for social density?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viblanc, Vincent A; Gineste, Benoit; Stier, Antoine; Robin, Jean-Patrice; Groscolas, René

    2014-07-01

    Because glucocorticoid (stress) hormones fundamentally affect various aspects of the behaviour, life history and fitness of free-living vertebrates, there is a need to understand the environmental factors shaping their variation in natural populations. Here, we examined whether spatial heterogeneity in breeding territory quality affected the stress of colonial king penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus). We assessed the effects of local climate (wind, sun and ambient temperature) and social conditions (number of neighbours, distance to neighbours) on the baseline levels of plasma total corticosterone (CORT) in 77 incubating and 42 chick-brooding birds, breeding on territories of central or peripheral colony location. We also assessed the oxidative stress status of a sub-sample of central vs. peripheral chick-brooders to determine whether chronic stress arose from breeding on specific territories. On average, we found that brooders had 55% higher CORT levels than incubators. Regardless of breeding status, central birds experienced greater social density (higher number of neighbours, shorter distance between territories) and had higher CORT levels than peripheral birds. Increasing social density positively explained 40% of the variation in CORT levels of both incubators and brooders, but the effect was more pronounced in brooders. In contrast, climate was similar among breeding territories and did not significantly affect the CORT levels of breeding birds. In brooders, oxidative stress status was not affected by local density or weather conditions. These results highlight that local heterogeneity in breeding (including social) conditions may strongly affect the stress levels of breeding seabirds. The fitness consequences of such variation remain to be investigated.

  8. Ornithocenosis Structure in Fresh and Wet Sudubravas of Kyiv Polissya during the Breeding Period

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Plyha A. V.

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This research was carried out in Kyiv Polissya geobotanical province, in one of most common woods type - fresh and wet sudubravas. Its purpose is to determine ornithocenosis structure in different age groups of this type of forest. To achieve that, forest bird species lists were composed, their population density and that of ecological groups of birds were calculated. In the course of the research in the breeding periods of 2013-2014, two-time surveys were carried out on 12 survey routes of total length 33 km. For further analysis, forests were divided into age groups: 0-20 years, 20-40 years, 40-60 years, 60-80 years, 80-100 years and forests over 100 years. Altogether 53 bird species were found. Species lists were poorest in the forests of 0-20 years (18 species, and richest in the forests over 100 years (39 species. Minimal population density was 473 individuals per square kilometer in the youngest forest age group of 0-20 years, maximal - 2155 individuals per square kilometer in pine forests aged over 100 years. Analysis of different population densities of ecological groups reveals steadily growing numbers of hollow-nesting birds and tree-nesting birds in accordance with aging of the forests. In older forests hollow-nesting birds constitute an absolute majority. Population density of another ecological group shows no such direct tendency.

  9. Abundance-area relationships in bird assemblages along an Afrotropical elevational gradient: space limitation in montane forest selects for higher population densities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferenc, Michal; Fjeldså, Jon; Sedláček, Ondřej; Motombi, Francis Njie; Djomo Nana, Eric; Mudrová, Karolína; Hořák, David

    2016-05-01

    The usual positive inter-specific relationship between range size and abundance of local populations can have notable exceptions in Afrotropical montane areas, where range-restricted bird species are unusually abundant. We tested how the area occupied locally by passerines and their geographic range size relate to local abundances along a tropical elevational gradient of Mt Cameroon, West-Central Africa. Data on bird assemblages were collected at six forested elevations (350, 650, 1100, 1500, 1850 m, 2200 m a.s.l.) using a standardised point count at 16 locations per elevation. Elevational ranges of birds were compiled from published sources and their geographic range sizes were determined as the occupancy of 1° x 1° grid cells. The observed relationship between local abundance and geographic range size within the entire passerine assemblage on Mt Cameroon disagrees with the most frequently reported positive pattern. However, the patterns differ among elevations, with positive trends of the abundance-range size relationship in lowland changing to negative trends towards higher elevations. Interestingly, the total assemblage abundances do not differ much among elevations and population size estimates of species occupying different parts of the gradient remain relatively constant. These patterns are caused by relatively high abundances of montane species, which might be a result of long-term ecological specialization and/or competitive release in species-poor montane locations and possibly facilitated by an extinction filter. Our data suggest that montane species' abilities to maintain dense populations might compensate for less area available near mountain tops and help these populations to circumvent extinction. PMID:26801494

  10. Climate change leads to decreasing bird migration distances

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, Marcel E.; Perdeck, Albert C.; van Balen, Johan H.; Both, Christiaan

    2009-01-01

    Global climate change has led to warmer winters in NW Europe, shortening the distance between suitable overwintering areas and the breeding areas of many bird species. Here we show that winter recovery distances have decreased over the past seven decades, for birds ringed during the breeding season

  11. Effect of imputing markers from a low-density chip on the reliability of genomic breeding values in Holstein populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dassonneville, R; Brøndum, Rasmus Froberg; Druet, T;

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the imputation error and loss of reliability of direct genomic values (DGV) or genomically enhanced breeding values (GEBV) when using genotypes imputed from a 3,000-marker single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) panel to a 50,000-marker SNP panel. Data co...

  12. Can lowland dry forests represent a refuge from avian malaria for native Hawaiian birds?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker-Mohl, Katherine; Hart, Patrick; Atkinson, Carter T.

    2010-01-01

    Hawaii's native birds have become increasingly threatened over the past century. Introduced mosquito borne diseases such as avian malaria may be responsible for the near absence of endemic Hawaiian forest birds in low-elevation habitats. The recent recognition that some native Hawaiian forest birds may be repopulating moist lowland habitats as a result of evolved resistance to this disease has increased the conservation value of these areas. Here, we investigate whether remnant low elevation dry forests on Hawaii Island provide natural 'refuges' from mosquito-transmitted malaria by nature of their low rainfall and absence of suitable natural sources of water for mosquito breeding. Unlike lowland wet forests where high rates of disease transmission may be selecting for disease resistance, lowland dry forests may provide some refuge for native forest birds without natural resistance to malaria. We mistnetted forest birds in two lowland dry forests and tested all native birds by microscopy and serology for avian malaria caused by the Plasmodium relictum parasite. We also conducted surveys for standing water and mosquito larvae. Overall prevalence of infections with Plasmodium relictum in the Hawaii Amakihi Hemignathus virens virens was 15%. Most infected birds had lowlevel parasitemias, suggesting chronic infections. Although avian malaria is present in these lowland dry forest Amakihi populations, infection rates are significantly lower than in wet forest populations at similar elevations. Sources of breeding mosquitoes in these forests appeared to be largely anthropogenic; thus, there is potential to manage dry forests as mosquito-free habitat for Hawaii Amakihi and other Hawaiian forest birds.

  13. The potential use of porphyrins as nondestructive biomarker of contaminant exposure in bird populations; L`uso delle porfirine come biomarker non distruttivo di esposizione in popolazioni aviarie

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Casini, S.; Fossi, M.C. [Siena, Univ. (Italy). Dip. Biologia Ambientale

    1998-02-01

    In this work the potential use of porphyrins as nondestructive biomarker of contaminant exposure in bird populations was investigated. Three laboratory experiments were carried out using Japanese quails (Coturnix coturnix japonica) treated with PCBs, methylmercury, hexachlorobenzene and lead (porphyrins were measured in liver and excreta). For the field validation of this approach two studies were carried out on excreta of colonial and fish eating birds. Porphyrins are confirmed to be suitable biomarkers of PCBs, MeHg and HCB exposure in birds, having also shown for the first two a response-dose relationship and a correlation between destructive and nondestructive samples. [Italiano] In questo lavoro viene proposto l`uso delle porfirie come biomarker non distruttivo di esposizione a contaminanti ambientali in popolazioni di uccelli. Lo studio si e` articolato in tre esperimenti di laboratorio su quaglie gaipponesi (Coturnix coturnix japonica) trattate con PCBs, metilmercurio (MeHg), esaclorobenzene (HCB) e piombo (alle quali stato misurato il contenuto porfirinico nel fegato e negli excreta) e in due campionamenti di excreta in popolazioni di uccelli marini coloniali. Le porfirine si sono confermate buoni biomarkers di esposizione ai contaminanti analizzati, inoltre nelle quaglie trattate con PCBs e MeHg le porfirine hanno subto un accumulo dose-dipendente ed stata misurata una correlazione ytra l`accumulo nel fegato e negli excreta.

  14. A Continent-Wide Migratory Divide in North American Breeding Barn Swallows (Hirundo rustica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keith A Hobson

    Full Text Available Populations of most North American aerial insectivores have undergone steep population declines over the past 40 years but the relative importance of factors operating on breeding, wintering, or stopover sites remains unknown. We used archival light-level geolocators to track the phenology, movements and winter locations of barn swallows (Hirdundo rustica; n = 27 from populations across North America to determine their migratory connectivity. We identified an east-west continental migratory divide for barn swallows with birds from western regions (Washington State, USA (n = 8 and Saskatchewan, Canada (n = 5 traveling shorter distances to wintering areas ranging from Oregon to northern Colombia than eastern populations (Ontario (n = 3 and New Brunswick (n = 10, Canada which wintered in South America south of the Amazon basin. A single swallow from a stable population in Alabama shared a similar migration route to eastern barn swallows but wintered farther north in northeast Brazil indicating a potential leap frog pattern migratory among eastern birds. Six of 9 (67% birds from the two eastern populations and Alabama underwent a loop migration west of fall migration routes including around the Gulf of Mexico travelling a mean of 2,224 km and 722 km longer on spring migration, respectively. Longer migration distances, including the requirement to cross the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico and subsequent shorter sedentary wintering periods, may exacerbate declines for populations breeding in northeastern North America.

  15. Ecological Sustainability of Birds in Boreal Forests

    OpenAIRE

    Lisa Venier; Mikko Mönkkönen; Robert Howe; Pekka Helle; JoAnn Hanowski; Gerald Niemi; Daniel Welsh

    1998-01-01

    We review characteristics of birds in boreal forests in the context of their ecological sustainability under both natural and anthropogenic disturbances. We identify the underlying ecological factors associated with boreal bird populations and their variability, review the interactions between boreal bird populations and disturbance, and describe some tools on how boreal bird populations may be conserved in the future. The boreal system has historically been an area with extensive disturbance...

  16. Genomic selection and association mapping in rice (Oryza sativa): effect of trait genetic architecture, training population composition, marker number and statistical model on accuracy of rice genomic selection in elite, tropical rice breeding lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spindel, Jennifer; Begum, Hasina; Akdemir, Deniz; Virk, Parminder; Collard, Bertrand; Redoña, Edilberto; Atlin, Gary; Jannink, Jean-Luc; McCouch, Susan R

    2015-02-01

    Genomic Selection (GS) is a new breeding method in which genome-wide markers are used to predict the breeding value of individuals in a breeding population. GS has been shown to improve breeding efficiency in dairy cattle and several crop plant species, and here we evaluate for the first time its efficacy for breeding inbred lines of rice. We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) in conjunction with five-fold GS cross-validation on a population of 363 elite breeding lines from the International Rice Research Institute's (IRRI) irrigated rice breeding program and herein report the GS results. The population was genotyped with 73,147 markers using genotyping-by-sequencing. The training population, statistical method used to build the GS model, number of markers, and trait were varied to determine their effect on prediction accuracy. For all three traits, genomic prediction models outperformed prediction based on pedigree records alone. Prediction accuracies ranged from 0.31 and 0.34 for grain yield and plant height to 0.63 for flowering time. Analyses using subsets of the full marker set suggest that using one marker every 0.2 cM is sufficient for genomic selection in this collection of rice breeding materials. RR-BLUP was the best performing statistical method for grain yield where no large effect QTL were detected by GWAS, while for flowering time, where a single very large effect QTL was detected, the non-GS multiple linear regression method outperformed GS models. For plant height, in which four mid-sized QTL were identified by GWAS, random forest produced the most consistently accurate GS models. Our results suggest that GS, informed by GWAS interpretations of genetic architecture and population structure, could become an effective tool for increasing the efficiency of rice breeding as the costs of genotyping continue to decline.

  17. Christmas Island birds returning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Six months after their mass exodus, birds are beginning to return to Christmas Island. Roughly 17 million birds, almost the entire adult bird population, either perished or fled their mid-Pacific atoll home last autumn, leaving behind thousands of nestlings to starve (Eos, April 5, 1983, p. 131). It is believed that the strong El Niño altered the ecology of the surrounding waters and forced the birds to flee. Christmas Island is the world's largest coral atoll.“Ocean and atmosphere scientists are unsure of future directions for the El Niño conditions and cannot now predict what will happen to the birds in the coming months,” said Ralph W. Schreiber, curator of ornithology at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in California. Heisthe ornithologist who discovered the disappearance. “The recovery of the bird populations depends on the food supply in the waters surrounding the island.” The island's birds feed exclusively on small fish and squid.

  18. Optimal moult strategies in migratory birds

    OpenAIRE

    Barta, Zoltán; Mcnamara, John M.; Houston, Alasdair I; Weber, Thomas P.; Hedenström, Anders; Feró, Orsolya

    2007-01-01

    Avian migration, which involves billions of birds flying vast distances, is known to influence all aspects of avian life. Here we investigate how birds fit moult into an annual cycle determined by the need to migrate. Large variation exists in moulting patterns in relation to migration: for instance, moult can occur after breeding in the summer or after arrival in the wintering quarters. Here we use an optimal annual routine model to investigate why this variation exists. The modelled bird's ...

  19. Enhancing bird banding information sharing across the western hemishpere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojo, A.; Berlanga, H.; Howes, L.; Tomosy, M.

    2007-01-01

    Bird banding and marking provide indispensable tools for ornithological research, management, and conservation of migratory birds and their habitats along migratory routes, breeding and non-breeding grounds. With the growing interest in international coordination of tracking bird movements, coordination amongst developing and existing programs is essential for effective data management. The North American Bird Banding Program (Canadian Bird Banding Office and U.S. Bird Banding Laboratory and the Mexican government) has been working to enhance collaboration with other Western Hemisphere countries to establish a voluntary bird banding communication network. This network addresses challenges, such as: demonstrating how sharing banding expertise and information management can support the stewardship of Western Hemisphere migratory birds, ensuring that valuable banding and encounter data are captured and shared. With increasing numbers of international scientific and conservation initiatives, bird banding and marking programs must provide essential international coordination functions as well as support local activities by facilitating access to bands, training, data management and encounter reporting.

  20. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations for birth weight, birth date, dystocia, and survival as traits of dam in beef cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1991-09-01

    Heterosis effects were evaluated as traits of the dam in F2 progeny of F1 dams and F3 and 4 progeny of F2 and 3 dams in three composite populations of beef cattle. Traits included birth weight, birth date, calving difficulty percentage, and survival percentage at birth, 72 h, and weaning for calves with dams of different age classes. Breed effects were evaluated for the nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 C, 1/4 B, 1/4 L, 1/4 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Among calves with 2-yr-old dams, breed effects were significant for birth weight, birth date, calving difficulty percentage, and survival percentage at birth but not at 72 h and weaning. Calf survival at weaning was lowest for smallest (less than mu - 1.5 sigma) and largest (greater than mu + 1.5 sigma) birth weight classes and did not differ among intermediate birth weight classes. Calves with difficult births with 2-yr-old dams were significantly heavier at birth (39.6 vs 35.4 kg) and had significantly lower survival at 72 h (87.1 vs 92.2%) and at weaning (77.4 vs 85.1%) than calves with 2-yr-old dams that did not experience difficult births. Among calves with dams greater than or equal to 3 yr old and from dams of all ages, breed group effects generally were significant for the traits analyzed. Important breed group effects on dystocia and survival traits were observed independent of breed group effects on birth weight. Effects of heterosis were significant for birth weight for each generation of each composite population and for the mean of the three composite populations. Generally, heterosis effects for calving difficulty percentage were not significant. Effects of heterosis generally were significant for date of birth (earlier) for each composite population and for

  1. 50 CFR 15.42 - List of foreign qualifying breeding facilities. [Reserved

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false List of foreign qualifying breeding... OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Qualifying Facilities Breeding Exotic Birds in Captivity § 15.42 List of foreign qualifying breeding facilities....

  2. Genome-wide candidate regions for selective sweeps revealed through massive parallel sequencing of DNA across ten turkey populations

    OpenAIRE

    Aslam, M.L.; Bastiaansen, J. W. M.; Megens, H.J.W.C.; Crooijmans, R.P.M.A.; Blomberg, L.; Groenen, M.

    2014-01-01

    Background The domestic turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) is an important agricultural species that is largely used as a meat-type bird. Characterizing genetic variation in populations of domesticated species and associating these variation patterns with the evolution, domestication, and selective breeding is critical for understanding the dynamics of genomic change in these species. Intense selective breeding and population bottlenecks are expected to leave signatures in the genome of domesticate...

  3. Population trends of grassland birds in North America are linked to the prevalence of an agricultural epizootic in Europe

    OpenAIRE

    Nocera, Joseph J.; Koslowsky, Hannah M.

    2011-01-01

    Globalization of trade has dramatic socioeconomic effects, and, intuitively, significant ecological effects should follow. However, few quantitative examples exist of the interrelationship of globalization, socioeconomics, and ecological patterns. We present a striking illustration of a cascade in which bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE; “mad cow disease”) outbreaks in Europe exerted pressure on global beef markets, subsequently affecting North American hayfields and grassland bird popula...

  4. Breed effects and heterosis in advanced generations of composite populations on actual weight, adjusted weight, hip height, and condition score of beef cows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K E; Cundiff, L V; Koch, R M

    1992-06-01

    Heterosis effects were evaluated in three composite populations in F1, F2, and F3 generations separately and combined in 1-yr-old and from 2- through greater than or equal to 7-yr-old beef cows. Traits included actual weight, weight adjusted to a common condition score, hip height, and condition score. Breed effects were evaluated in the nine parental breeds (Red Poll [R], Hereford [H], Angus [A], Limousin [L], Braunvieh [B], Pinzgauer [P], Gelbvieh [G], Simmental [S], and Charolais [C]) that contributed to the three composite populations (MARC I = 1/4 B, 1/4 C, 1/4 L, 1/8 H, 1/8 A; MARC II = 1/4 G, 1/4 S, 1/4 H, 1/4 A; and MARC III = 1/4 R, 1/4 P, 1/4 H, 1/4 A). Breed group (parental breed and composite) effects were significant for all traits analyzed. The effects of heterosis were generally important (P less than .05) for all traits in F1, F2, and F3 generations separately and combined in the three composite populations. Generally, the magnitude of heterosis observed at 1 yr of age did not differ from that observed in cows from 2 through greater than or equal to 7 yr old. Adjusting weight to a common condition score resulted in an average reduction of heterosis effects on actual weight by approximately one-fourth. Thus, approximately one-fourth of the effects of heterosis on weight result from heterosis effects on condition score. Generally, retained heterosis in the F3 generation of either 1-yr-old or from 2-through greater than or equal to 7-yr-old cows of the three composite populations did not differ (P greater than .05) from expectation based on retained heterozygosity for the traits analyzed. These results support the hypothesis that heterosis for weight, hip height, and condition score of cows of these age classes is the result of dominance effects of genes.

  5. Population structure and breeding period of Pachycheles monilifer (Dana (Anomura, Porcellanidae inhabiting sabellariid sand reefs from the littoral coast of São Paulo State, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adilson Fransozo

    2001-03-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of the present study is to examine the population structure and the breeding period of Pachycheles monilifer (Dana, 1852 inhabiting sabellariid worm reefs in the littoral of São Paulo State coast. The specimens were obtained at 2-month intervals from September/94 to July/95. The study sites were located at the rocky shores of Tenorio and Paranapuã Beaches. Individuals sampled showed a total averaged 4.4 ± 1.4 mm carapace length. Ovigerous females were more frequent in September. Despite clear differences regarding the arrangement of these sabellariid colonies, they are extremely important to the establishment and maintenance of P. monilifer.

  6. Recruitment in a Colorado population of big brown bats: Breeding probabilities, litter size, and first-year survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Shea, T.J.; Ellison, L.E.; Neubaum, D.J.; Neubaum, M.A.; Reynolds, C.A.; Bowen, R.A.

    2010-01-01

    We used markrecapture estimation techniques and radiography to test hypotheses about 3 important aspects of recruitment in big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) in Fort Collins, Colorado: adult breeding probabilities, litter size, and 1st-year survival of young. We marked 2,968 females with passive integrated transponder (PIT) tags at multiple sites during 2001-2005 and based our assessments on direct recaptures (breeding probabilities) and passive detection with automated PIT tag readers (1st-year survival). We interpreted our data in relation to hypotheses regarding demographic influences of bat age, roost, and effects of years with unusual environmental conditions: extreme drought (2002) and arrival of a West Nile virus epizootic (2003). Conditional breeding probabilities at 6 roosts sampled in 2002-2005 were estimated as 0.64 (95% confidence interval [95% CI] = 0.530.73) in 1-year-old females, but were consistently high (95% CI = 0.940.96) and did not vary by roost, year, or prior year breeding status in older adults. Mean litter size was 1.11 (95% CI = 1.051.17), based on examination of 112 pregnant females by radiography. Litter size was not higher in older or larger females and was similar to results of other studies in western North America despite wide variation in latitude. First-year survival was estimated as 0.67 (95% CI = 0.610.73) for weaned females at 5 maternity roosts over 5 consecutive years, was lower than adult survival (0.79; 95% CI = 0.770.81), and varied by roost. Based on model selection criteria, strong evidence exists for complex roost and year effects on 1st-year survival. First-year survival was lowest in bats born during the drought year. Juvenile females that did not return to roosts as 1-year-olds had lower body condition indices in late summer of their natal year than those known to survive. ?? 2009 American Society of Mammalogists.

  7. Breeding experience, alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success in a captive colony of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baran, Nicole M; Adkins-Regan, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    Birds exhibit a remarkable diversity of different reproductive strategies both between and within species. Species such as the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) may evolve the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, as well as benefit from prior breeding experience, which allows them to adaptively respond to unpredictable environments. In birds, the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, such as extra-pair mating, has been reported to be associated with fast reproduction, high mortality and environmental variability. However, little is known about the role of previous breeding experience in the adaptive use of alternative reproductive strategies. Here we performed an in-depth study of reproductive outcomes in a population of domesticated zebra finches, testing the impact of prior breeding experience on the use of alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success. We provide evidence that older females with prior breeding experience are quicker to initiate a clutch with a new partner and have increased success in chick rearing, even in a captive colony of zebra finches with minimal foraging demands. We also find evidence that the breeding experience of other females in the same social group influences reproductive investment by female zebra finches. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the use of alternative reproductive strategies in female zebra finches is associated with previous failed breeding attempts with the same pair partner. The results provide evidence that age and breeding experience play important roles in the flexible use of both facultative and adaptive reproductive strategies in female zebra finches.

  8. Breeding experience, alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success in a captive colony of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole M Baran

    Full Text Available Birds exhibit a remarkable diversity of different reproductive strategies both between and within species. Species such as the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata may evolve the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, as well as benefit from prior breeding experience, which allows them to adaptively respond to unpredictable environments. In birds, the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, such as extra-pair mating, has been reported to be associated with fast reproduction, high mortality and environmental variability. However, little is known about the role of previous breeding experience in the adaptive use of alternative reproductive strategies. Here we performed an in-depth study of reproductive outcomes in a population of domesticated zebra finches, testing the impact of prior breeding experience on the use of alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success. We provide evidence that older females with prior breeding experience are quicker to initiate a clutch with a new partner and have increased success in chick rearing, even in a captive colony of zebra finches with minimal foraging demands. We also find evidence that the breeding experience of other females in the same social group influences reproductive investment by female zebra finches. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the use of alternative reproductive strategies in female zebra finches is associated with previous failed breeding attempts with the same pair partner. The results provide evidence that age and breeding experience play important roles in the flexible use of both facultative and adaptive reproductive strategies in female zebra finches.

  9. Morphological, molecular and cross-breeding analysis of geographic populations of coconut-mite associated predatory mites identified as Neoseiulus baraki: evidence for cryptic species?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Famah Sourassou, Nazer; Hanna, Rachid; Zannou, Ignace; Breeuwer, Johannes A J; de Moraes, Gilberto; Sabelis, Maurice W

    2012-05-01

    Surveys were conducted in Brazil, Benin and Tanzania to collect predatory mites as candidates for control of the coconut mite Aceria guerreronis Keifer, a serious pest of coconut fruits. At all locations surveyed, one of the most dominant predators on infested coconut fruits was identified as Neoseiulus baraki Athias-Henriot, based on morphological similarity with regard to taxonomically relevant characters. However, scrutiny of our own and published descriptions suggests that consistent morphological differences may exist between the Benin population and those from the other geographic origins. In this study, we combined three methods to assess whether these populations belong to one species or a few distinct, yet closely related species. First, multivariate analysis of 32 morphological characters showed that the Benin population differed from the other three populations. Second, DNA sequence analysis based on the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) showed the same difference between these populations. Third, cross-breeding between populations was unsuccessful in all combinations. These data provide evidence for the existence of cryptic species. Subsequent morphological research showed that the Benin population can be distinguished from the others by a new character (not included in the multivariate analysis), viz. the number of teeth on the fixed digit of the female chelicera.

  10. Breeding sites and winter site fidelity of Piping Plovers wintering in The Bahamas, a previously unknown major wintering area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gratto-Trevor, Cheri; Haig, Susan M.; Miller, Mark P.; Mullins, Thomas D.; Maddock, Sidney; Roche, Erin A.; Moore, Predensa

    2016-01-01

    Most of the known wintering areas of Piping Plovers (Charadrius melodus) are along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the United States and into Mexico, and in the Caribbean. However, 1066 threatened/endangered Piping Plovers were recently found wintering in The Bahamas, an area not previously known to be important for the species. Although representing about 27% of the birds counted during the 2011 International Piping Plover Winter Census, the location of their breeding site(s) was unknown. Thus, our objectives were to determine the location(s) of their breeding site(s) using molecular markers and by tracking banded individuals, identify spring and fall staging sites, and examine site fidelity and survival. We captured and color-banded 57 birds in January and February 2010 in The Bahamas. Blood samples were also collected for genetic evaluation of the likely subspecies wintering in The Bahamas. Band re-sightings and DNA analysis revealed that at least 95% of the Piping Plovers wintering in The Bahamas originated on the Atlantic coast of the United States and Canada. Re-sightings of birds banded in The Bahamas spanned the breeding distribution of the species along the Atlantic coast from Newfoundland to North Carolina. Site fidelity to breeding and wintering sites was high (88–100%). Spring and fall staging sites were located along the Atlantic coast of the United States, with marked birds concentrating in the Carolinas. Our estimate of true survival for the marked birds was 0.71 (95% CI: 0.61–0.80). Our results indicate that more than one third of the Piping Plover population that breeds along the Atlantic coast winters in The Bahamas. By determining the importance of The Bahamas to the Atlantic subspecies of Piping Plovers, future conservation efforts for these populations can be better focused on where they are most needed.

  11. Patterns of molecular genetic variation among cat breeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; David, Victor A; Pflueger, Solveig M; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Wade, Claire M; O'Brien, Stephen J; Johnson, Warren E

    2008-01-01

    Genetic variation in cat breeds was assessed utilizing a panel of short tandem repeat (STR) loci genotyped in 38 cat breeds and 284 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genotyped in 24 breeds. Population structure in cat breeds generally reflects their recent ancestry and absence of strong breed barriers between some breeds. There is a wide range in the robustness of population definition, from breeds demonstrating high definition to breeds with as little as a third of their genetic variation partitioning into a single population. Utilizing the STRUCTURE algorithm, there was no clear demarcation of the number of population subdivisions; 16 breeds could not be resolved into independent populations, the consequence of outcrossing in established breeds to recently developed breeds with common ancestry. These 16 breeds were divided into 6 populations. Ninety-six percent of cats in a sample set of 1040 were correctly assigned to their classified breed or breed group/population. Average breed STR heterozygosities ranged from moderate (0.53; Havana, Korat) to high (0.85; Norwegian Forest Cat, Manx). Most of the variation in cat breeds was observed within a breed population (83.7%), versus 16.3% of the variation observed between populations. The hierarchical relationships of cat breeds is poorly defined as demonstrated by phylogenetic trees generated from both STR and SNP data, though phylogeographic grouping of breeds derived completely or in part from Southeast Asian ancestors was apparent.

  12. Testosterone in tropical birds: effects of environmental and social factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goymann, Wolfgang; Moore, Ignacio T; Scheuerlein, Alexander; Hirschenhauser, Katharina; Grafen, Alan; Wingfield, John C

    2004-09-01

    Previous investigations suggest that male tropical birds have lower plasma testosterone concentrations than northern latitude species. To test whether this generalization is valid, we analyzed all currently available plasma testosterone data of tropical birds. We focused on peak breeding testosterone levels using phylogenetic and conventional statistics. Explanatory variables considered were social mating system, type of territoriality, breeding season length, and altitude. On average, tropical birds had lower mean peak testosterone levels than northern temperate birds. However, in several tropical species, testosterone levels were well within the range of northern latitude birds. Without controlling for phylogeny, breeding season length, type of territoriality, and altitude explained a significant proportion of the variance in testosterone levels. The shorter the breeding season, the higher the testosterone levels. Tropical birds that defend a breeding season territory had higher testosterone levels than birds that were year-round territorial or colonial, and testosterone levels were positively correlated with altitude. When controlling for phylogeny, only breeding season length predicted testosterone levels. In conclusion, we propose to refine previous notions of low plasma testosterone levels in tropical birds: short breeding seasons and perhaps environmental conditions at high altitudes precipitate conditions under which high testosterone levels are beneficial in the tropics. PMID:15478088

  13. Populations of migratory bird species that did not show a phenological response to climate change are declining

    OpenAIRE

    Møller, Anders Pape; Rubolini, Diego; Lehikoinen, Esa

    2008-01-01

    Recent rapid climatic changes are associated with dramatic changes in phenology of plants and animals, with optimal timing of reproduction advancing considerably in the northern hemisphere. However, some species may not have advanced their timing of breeding sufficiently to continue reproducing optimally relative to the occurrence of peak food availability, thus becoming mismatched compared with their food sources. The degree of mismatch may differ among species, and species with greater mism...

  14. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Approval of cooperative breeding programs... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.26 Approval of cooperative breeding programs. Upon receipt of a complete application, the...

  15. Breeding ecology of Wandering Tattlers Tringa incana: a study from south-central Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Robert; Tomkovich, Pavel S.; Dementyev, Maksim N.

    2015-01-01

    Montane-nesting shorebirds are arguably the least studied of the Charadriiformes, owing in part to the remoteness of their breeding areas, low nesting densities, and specialized behaviors. We studied a marked population of the Wandering Tattler Tringa incana, during a three-year period (1997–1999) on nesting grounds in south-central Alaska. Two aspects of our results stand out. First is the previously undescribed preference for tattlers to nest several kilometers removed from pre-nesting feeding areas, mostly in association with both small (kettle) lakes and running water (near small distributaries of major drainages). Second is the apparent use of the study area by cohorts of birds of different breeding status, including (1) local breeders, which defended pre-breeding foraging areas, (2) local non-breeding birds, which remained on the area but were not territorial, and (3) transients that were captured later in the season, but not seen again on the area during the season of capture. We also found that (1) birds tended to nest in clusters despite what appeared to be the ample availability of nesting habitat, (2) they employed an inconspicuous’ nesting strategy whereby neither member of a pair betrayed its presence on the nesting area, and (3) females departed the area during early chick-rearing, leaving males to tend broods.

  16. Promising trend of in situ breeding of Oriental White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis in Raigad District, Maharashtra, India: conservation implications for re-introduction of ex situ populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Pande

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The population of Gyps vultures crashed at an alarming rate in India, from 85% since 1985-86 to 0% in 1997-99. There are sporadic records of sightings, wild breeding and captive breeding of Gyps and Neophron Vultures from 2005 to 2010 from various parts of India. We noticed continued, uninterrupted successful nesting of Oriental White-rumped Vultures Gyps bengalensis in their natural habitats in Raigad District, Maharashtra from 2004 to 2011. Their breeding population steadily increased from 10 pairs in 2004-2005 to 22 pairs in 2010-2011 and the nesting success steadily increased from 30% in 2004-2005 to 70% in 2010-2011. We feel that the naturally breeding populations are a must for successful re-introduction of the juvenile captive-bred vultures in the wild, and both in situ and ex situ breeding of vultures should be coordinated till the vulture population increases to an acceptable level and stabilizes in the Indian subcontinent. Identification of natural active nest sites is the foremost requirement for safeguarding the breeding of the Oriental White-rumped Vultures in private land by winning peoples participation.

  17. Public support for conserving bird species runs counter to climate change impacts on their distributions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Hedemark Lundhede

    Full Text Available There is increasing evidence that global climate change will alter the spatiotemporal occurrences and abundances of many species at continental scales. This will have implications for efficient conservation of biodiversity. We investigate if the general public in Denmark are willing to pay for the preservation of birds potentially immigrating and establishing breeding populations due to climate change to the same extent that they are for native species populations currently breeding in Denmark, but potentially emigrating due to climate change. We find that Danish citizens are willing to pay much more for the conservation of birds currently native to Denmark, than for bird species moving into the country--even when they are informed about the potential range shifts associated with climate change. The only exception is when immigrating species populations are under pressure at European level. Furthermore, people believing climate change to be man-made and people more knowledgeable about birds tended to have higher WTP for conservation of native species, relative to other people, whereas their preferences for conserving immigrant species generally resembled those of other people. Conservation investments rely heavily on public funding and hence on public support. Our results suggest that cross-country coordination of conservation efforts under climate change will be challenging in terms of achieving an appropriate balance between cost-effectiveness in adaptation and the concerns of a general public who seem mostly worried about protecting currently-native species.

  18. The Effects of Supplementary Food on the Breeding Performance of Eurasian Reed Warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus; Implications for Climate Change Impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vafidis, James O; Vaughan, Ian P; Jones, T Hefin; Facey, Richard J; Parry, Rob; Thomas, Robert J

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms by which climate variation can drive population changes requires information linking climate, local conditions, trophic resources, behaviour and demography. Climate change alters the seasonal pattern of emergence and abundance of invertebrate populations, which may have important consequences for the breeding performance and population change of insectivorous birds. In this study, we examine the role of food availability in driving behavioural changes in an insectivorous migratory songbird; the Eurasian reed warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus. We use a feeding experiment to examine the effect of increased food supply on different components of breeding behaviour and first-brood productivity, over three breeding seasons (2012-2014). Reed warblers respond to food-supplementation by advancing their laying date by up to 5.6 days. Incubation periods are shorter in supplemented groups during the warmest mean spring temperatures. Nestling growth rates are increased in nests provisioned by supplemented parents. In addition, nest predation is reduced, possibly because supplemented adults spend more time at the nest and faster nestling growth reduces the period of vulnerability of eggs and nestlings to predators (and brood parasites). The net effect of these changes is to advance the fledging completion date and to increase the overall productivity of the first brood for supplemented birds. European populations of reed warblers are currently increasing; our results suggest that advancing spring phenology, leading to increased food availability early in the breeding season, could account for this change by facilitating higher productivity. Furthermore, the earlier brood completion potentially allows multiple breeding attempts. This study identifies the likely trophic and behavioural mechanisms by which climate-driven changes in invertebrate phenology and abundance may lead to changes in breeding phenology, nest survival and net reproductive

  19. Monitoring Forsmark. Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Green, Martin (Dept. of Animal Ecology, Lund Univ. (Sweden))

    2010-12-15

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds Directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002-2010. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2010 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from the monitoring in 2010 differed somewhat from results gathered in earlier years. Most monitored species have increased in local numbers during the study years, and from most years continued increases have been reported. Between 2009 and 2010 most species (seven, 64% of the monitored ones) instead decreased in numbers. Only one species (honey buzzard) increased in numbers between the years and in this case this was probably more a result of small moves by certain pairs so that they this year had parts reaching into the regional model area, while in 2009 their territories were outside of this. No dramatic changes in bird numbers were however recorded and all the studied species show stable or increasing local populations over the study period. Number of Black-throated diver pairs was normal and breeding success was good this year. The breeding success of divers has improved considerably over the studied period and the patterns recorded in Forsmark closely follow recorded patterns at the national level. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, above the average for the whole period, and breeding success was better than in 2009. Even if breeding success of honey buzzards is not monitored in any detail, there were still signs of at least a few successful breedings in the area this year. Breeding success of ospreys was below average, but still within the normal variation for most years. The local white-tailed eagles had a poor breeding season and no young at all were produced within the study area. All three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) decreased in numbers between 2009 and 2010. Note however that the large amounts of snow

  20. Conserving migratory land birds in the New World: Do we know enough?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faaborg, J.; Holmes, Richard T.; Anders, A.D.; Bildstein, K.L.; Dugger, K.M.; Gauthreaux, S.A.; Heglund, P.; Hobson, K.A.; Jahn, A.E.; Johnson, D.H.; Latta, S.C.; Levey, D.J.; Marra, P.P.; Merkord, C.L.; Nol