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Sample records for carnivorous plant nepenthes

  1. Beet western yellows virus infects the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miguel, Sissi; Biteau, Flore; Mignard, Benoit; Marais, Armelle; Candresse, Thierry; Theil, Sébastien; Bourgaud, Frédéric; Hehn, Alain

    2016-08-01

    Although poleroviruses are known to infect a broad range of higher plants, carnivorous plants have not yet been reported as hosts. Here, we describe the first polerovirus naturally infecting the pitcher plant Nepenthes mirabilis. The virus was identified through bioinformatic analysis of NGS transcriptome data. The complete viral genome sequence was assembled from overlapping PCR fragments and shown to share 91.1 % nucleotide sequence identity with the US isolate of beet western yellows virus (BWYV). Further analysis of other N. mirabilis plants revealed the presence of additional BWYV isolates differing by several insertion/deletion mutations in ORF5. PMID:27180098

  2. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous Nepenthes plants

    OpenAIRE

    Franziska Buch; Kaman, Wendy E.; Bikker, Floris J.; Ayufu Yilamujiang; Axel Mithöfer

    2015-01-01

    textabstractCarnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the plants themselves. In order to digest caught prey in their pitchers, Nepenthes plants produce various hydrolytic enzymes including aspartic proteases, nepenthesins (Nep). Knowledge about the generat...

  3. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous Nepenthes plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F. Buch; W.E. Kaman; F.J. Bikker; A. Yilamujiang; A. Mithöfer

    2015-01-01

    Carnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the plants themse

  4. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous Nepenthes plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buch, F. (Franziska); W.E. Kaman (Wendy); F.J. Bikker (Floris); Yilamujiang, A. (Ayufu); Mithöfer, A. (Axel)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractCarnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the p

  5. Micropreparation of single secretory glands from the carnivorous plant Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rottloff, Sandy; Müller, Ute; Kilper, Roland; Mithöfer, Axel

    2009-11-01

    A rapid mechanical micropreparation technique has been developed to isolate multicellular glands, here from Nepenthes pitchers, based on a microdissection platform. The method is an alternative to laser capture dissection because fresh plant tissue can be used directly without previous fixation. Subsequent experiments, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based detection of an individual gene encoding a thaumatin-like protein and RNA extraction for gene expression analysis, have been successfully added to prove the quality of the prepared biological material. The procedure described is adaptable to a broad range of plant species and should find wide application in the preparation of multicellular glands or other tissues. PMID:19602419

  6. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous nepenthes plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buch, Franziska; Kaman, Wendy E; Bikker, Floris J; Yilamujiang, Ayufu; Mithöfer, Axel

    2015-01-01

    Carnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the plants themselves. In order to digest caught prey in their pitchers, Nepenthes plants produce various hydrolytic enzymes including aspartic proteases, nepenthesins (Nep). Knowledge about the generation and induction of these proteases is limited. Here, by employing a FRET (fluorescent resonance energy transfer)-based technique that uses a synthetic fluorescent substrate an easy and rapid detection of protease activities in the digestive fluids of various Nepenthes species was feasible. Biochemical studies and the heterologously expressed Nep II from Nepenthes mirabilis proved that the proteolytic activity relied on aspartic proteases, however an acid-mediated auto-activation mechanism was necessary. Employing the FRET-based approach, the induction and dynamics of nepenthesin in the digestive pitcher fluid of various Nepenthes plants could be studied directly with insect (Drosophila melanogaster) prey or plant material. Moreover, we observed that proteolytic activity was induced by the phytohormone jasmonic acid but not by salicylic acid suggesting that jasmonate-dependent signaling pathways are involved in plant carnivory. PMID:25750992

  7. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous nepenthes plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska Buch

    Full Text Available Carnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the plants themselves. In order to digest caught prey in their pitchers, Nepenthes plants produce various hydrolytic enzymes including aspartic proteases, nepenthesins (Nep. Knowledge about the generation and induction of these proteases is limited. Here, by employing a FRET (fluorescent resonance energy transfer-based technique that uses a synthetic fluorescent substrate an easy and rapid detection of protease activities in the digestive fluids of various Nepenthes species was feasible. Biochemical studies and the heterologously expressed Nep II from Nepenthes mirabilis proved that the proteolytic activity relied on aspartic proteases, however an acid-mediated auto-activation mechanism was necessary. Employing the FRET-based approach, the induction and dynamics of nepenthesin in the digestive pitcher fluid of various Nepenthes plants could be studied directly with insect (Drosophila melanogaster prey or plant material. Moreover, we observed that proteolytic activity was induced by the phytohormone jasmonic acid but not by salicylic acid suggesting that jasmonate-dependent signaling pathways are involved in plant carnivory.

  8. Form follows function: morphological diversification and alternative trapping strategies in carnivorous Nepenthes pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Clemente, C J; Renner, T; Federle, W

    2012-01-01

    Carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes have evolved a striking diversity of pitcher traps that rely on specialized slippery surfaces for prey capture. With a comparative study of trap morphology, we show that Nepenthes pitcher plants have evolved specific adaptations for the use of either one of two distinct trapping mechanisms: slippery wax crystals on the inner pitcher wall and 'insect aquaplaning' on the wet upper rim (peristome). Species without wax crystals had wider peristomes with a longer inward slope. Ancestral state reconstructions identified wax crystal layers and narrow, symmetrical peristomes as ancestral, indicating that wax crystals have been reduced or lost multiple times independently. Our results complement recent reports of nutrient source specializations in Nepenthes and suggest that these specializations may have driven speciation and rapid diversification in this genus. PMID:22023155

  9. The carnivorous syndrome in Nepenthes pitcher plants: current state of knowledge and potential future directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Jonathan A; Clarke, Charles M

    2010-06-01

    Nepenthes is the largest genus of pitcher plants, with its centre of diversity in SE Asia. The plants grow in substrates that are deficient in N and offset this deficiency by trapping animal prey, primarily arthropods. Recent research has provided new insights into the function of the pitchers, particularly with regard to prey tapping and retention. Species examined to date use combinations of wettable peristomes, wax layers and viscoelastic fluid to trap and retain prey. In many respects, this has redefined our understanding of the functioning of Nepenthes pitchers. In addition, recent research has shown that several Nepenthes species target specific groups of prey animals, or are even evolving away from a strictly carnivorous mode of operation. Future research into nutrient sequestration strategies and mechanisms of prey attraction would no doubt further enhance our knowledge of the ecology of this remarkable genus. PMID:21135573

  10. Slippery or sticky? Functional diversity in the trapping strategy of Nepenthes carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonhomme, Vincent; Pelloux-Prayer, Hervé; Jousselin, Emmanuelle; Forterre, Yoël; Labat, Jean-Jacques; Gaume, Laurence

    2011-07-01

    The pitcher-shaped leaves of Nepenthes carnivorous plants have been considered as pitfall traps that essentially rely on slippery surfaces to capture insects. But a recent study of Nepenthes rafflesiana has shown that the viscoelasticity of the digestive fluid inside the pitchers plays a key role. Here, we investigated whether Nepenthes species exhibit diverse trapping strategies. We measured the amount of slippery wax on the pitcher walls of 23 taxa and the viscoelasticity of their digestive liquid and compared their retention efficiency on ants and flies. The amount of wax was shown to vary greatly between species. Most mountain species exhibited viscoelastic digestive fluids while water-like fluids were predominant in lowland species. Both characteristics contributed to insect trapping but wax was more efficient at trapping ants while viscoelasticity was key in trapping insects and was even more efficient than wax on flies. Trap waxiness and fluid viscoelasticity were inversely related, suggesting the possibility of an investment trade-off for the plants. Therefore Nepenthes pitcher plants do not solely employ slippery devices to trap insects but often employ a viscoelastic strategy. The entomofauna specific to the plant's habitat may exert selective pressures, favouring one trapping strategy at the expense of the other. PMID:21434933

  11. Adaptive radiation with regard to nutrient sequestration strategies in the carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlovič, Andrej

    2012-02-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes have evolved a great diversity of pitcher morphologies. Selective pressures for maximizing nutrient uptake have driven speciation and diversification of the genus in a process known as adaptive radiation. This leads to the evolution of pitchers adapted to specific and often bizarre source of nutrients, which are not strictly animal-derived. One example is Nepenthes ampullaria with unusual growth pattern and pitcher morphology what enables the plant to capture a leaf litter from the canopy above. We showed that the plant benefits from nitrogen uptake by increased rate of photosynthesis and growth what may provide competitive advantage over others co-habiting plants. A possible impact of such specialization toward hybridization, an important mechanism in speciation, is discussed. PMID:22353868

  12. Isolation of viable multicellular glands from tissue of the carnivorous plant, Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rottloff, Sandy; Mithöfer, Axel; Müller, Ute; Kilper, Roland

    2013-01-01

    Many plants possess specialized structures that are involved in the production and secretion of specific low molecular weight compounds and proteins. These structures are almost always localized on plant surfaces. Among them are nectaries or glandular trichomes. The secreted compounds are often employed in interactions with the biotic environment, for example as attractants for pollinators or deterrents against herbivores. Glands that are unique in several aspects can be found in carnivorous plants. In so-called pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes, bifunctional glands inside the pitfall-trap on the one hand secrete the digestive fluid, including all enzymes necessary for prey digestion, and on the other hand take-up the released nutrients. Thus, these glands represent an ideal, specialized tissue predestinated to study the underlying molecular, biochemical, and physiological mechanisms of protein secretion and nutrient uptake in plants. Moreover, generally the biosynthesis of secondary compounds produced by many plants equipped with glandular structures could be investigated directly in glands. In order to work on such specialized structures, they need to be isolated efficiently, fast, metabolically active, and without contamination with other tissues. Therefore, a mechanical micropreparation technique was developed and applied for studies on Nepenthes digestion fluid. Here, a protocol is presented that was used to successfully prepare single bifunctional glands from Nepenthes traps, based on a mechanized microsampling platform. The glands could be isolated and directly used further for gene expression analysis by PCR techniques after preparation of RNA. PMID:24378909

  13. Hierarchical Structure and Multifunctional Surface Properties of Carnivorous Pitcher Plants Nepenthes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Chiao-Peng; Lin, Yu-Min; Chen, Po-Yu

    2015-04-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes have evolved specialized leaves fulfilling the multi-functions of attracting, capturing, retaining and digesting the prey, mostly arthropods. Different capturing mechanisms have been proposed and discussed in previous works. The most important capture mechanism is the unique super-hydrophilic surface properties of the peristome. The combination of a hierarchical surface structure and nectar secretions results in an exceptional water-lubricated trapping system. Anisotropic and unidirectional wettability is attributed to the ridge-like surface and epidermal folding. The three-dimensional plate-like wax crystals in the hydrophobic waxy zone can further prevent the prey from escaping. The captured prey are then digested in the hydrophilic digestive zone. The hybrid species Nepenthes × Miranda was investigated in this study. The surface morphology and hierarchical microstructure were characterized by scanning electron microscope. Contact angle measurement and wetting efficiency tests were performed to determine the wettability of the peristome under fresh, nectar-free and sucrose-coated conditions with controlled temperature and humidity. The results showed that sucrose-coated peristome surfaces possess the best wetting efficiency. The structure-property-function relationship and the capturing mechanism of Nepenthes were elucidated, which could further lead to the design and synthesis of novel bio-inspired surfaces and potential applications.

  14. Proteomic analysis of secreted protein induced by a component of prey in pitcher fluid of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatano, Naoya; Hamada, Tatsuro

    2012-08-01

    The Nepenthes species are carnivorous plants that have evolved a specialized leaf organ, the 'pitcher', to attract, capture, and digest insects. The digested insects provide nutrients for growth, allowing these plants to grow even in poor soil. Several proteins have been identified in the pitcher fluid, including aspartic proteases (nepenthesin I and II) and pathogenesis-related (PR) proteins (β-1,3-glucanase, class IV chitinase, and thaumatin-like protein). In this study, we collected and concentrated pitcher fluid to identify minor proteins. In addition, we tried to identify the protein secreted in response to trapping the insect. To make a similar situation in which the insect falls into the pitcher, chitin which was a major component of the insect exoskeleton was added to the fluid in the pitcher. Three PR proteins, class III peroxidase (Prx), β-1,3-glucanase, and class III chitinase, were newly identified. Prx was induced after the addition of chitin to the pitcher fluid. Proteins in the pitcher fluid of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata probably have two roles in nutrient supply: digestion of prey and the antibacterial effect. These results suggest that the system for digesting prey has evolved from the defense system against pathogens in the carnivorous plant Nepenthes. PMID:22705321

  15. Induced production of antifungal naphthoquinones in the pitchers of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes khasiana.

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    Eilenberg, Haviva; Pnini-Cohen, Smadar; Rahamim, Yocheved; Sionov, Edward; Segal, Esther; Carmeli, Shmuel; Zilberstein, Aviah

    2010-03-01

    Nepenthes spp. are carnivorous plants that have developed insect capturing traps, evolved by specific modification of the leaf tips, and are able to utilize insect degradation products as nutritional precursors. A chitin-induced antifungal ability, based on the production and secretion to the trap liquid of droserone and 5-O-methyldroserone, is described here. Such specific secretion uniquely occurred when chitin injection was used as the eliciting agent and probably reflects a certain kind of defence mechanism that has been evolved for protecting the carnivory-based provision of nutritional precursors. The pitcher liquid containing droserone and 5-O-methyldroserone at 3:1 or 4:1 molar ratio, as well as the purified naphthoquinones, exerted an antifungal effect on a wide range of plant and human fungal pathogens. When tested against Candida and Aspergillus spp., the concentrations required for achieving inhibitory and fungicidal effects were significantly lower than those causing cytotoxicity in cells of the human embryonic kidney cell line, 293T. These naturally secreted 1,4-naphthoquinone derivatives, that are assumed to act via semiquinone enhancement of free radical production, may offer a new lead to develop alternative antifungal drugs with reduced selectable pressure for potentially evolved resistance. PMID:20018905

  16. Characterization and heterologous expression of a PR-1 protein from traps of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buch, Franziska; Pauchet, Yannick; Rott, Matthias; Mithöfer, Axel

    2014-04-01

    Carnivorous plants capture and digest prey to obtain additional nutrients. Therefore, different trapping mechanisms were developed in different species. Plants of the genus Nepenthes possess pitfall-traps filled with a digestive fluid, which is secreted by the plants themselves. This pitcher fluid is composed of various enzymes to digest the captured prey. Besides hydrolytic enzymes, defense-related proteins have been identified in the fluid. The present study describes the identification and heterologous expression of a pathogenesis-related protein, NmPR-1, from pitchers of Nepenthes mirabilis with features that are unusual for PR-1 proteins. In particular, it was proven to be highly glycosylated and, furthermore, it exhibited antibacterial instead of antifungal activities. These properties are probably due to the specific environment of the pitcher fluid. PMID:24534104

  17. Two new naphthalene glucosides and other bioactive compounds from the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thanh, Nguyen Van; Thao, Nguyen Phuong; Dat, Le Duc; Huong, Phan Thi Thanh; Lee, Sang Hyun; Jang, Hae Dong; Cuong, Nguyen Xuan; Nam, Nguyen Hoai; Kiem, Phan Van; Minh, Chau Van; Kim, Young Ho

    2015-10-01

    Two new naphthalene diglucosides named nepenthosides A (1) and B (2), together with eleven known compounds (3-13), were isolated from the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis. The structures of these compounds were elucidated based on extensive spectroscopic analysis, including 1D- and 2D-NMR, and MS. The antioxidant activities of compounds 1-13 were evaluated in terms of their peroxyl radical-scavenging (trolox equivalent, TE) and reducing capacities. All isolates showed peroxyl radical-scavenging and reducing activities at concentrations of 1.0 and 10.0 μM. Anti-osteoporotic activities were investigated using murine osteoclastic RAW 264.7 cells. Compounds 1-7 and 9-12 significantly suppressed tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase activity down to 91.13 ± 1.18 to 42.39 ± 1.11%, relative to the control (100%) in nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANκL)-induced osteoclastic RAW 264.7 macrophage cells. PMID:25724283

  18. Description of Pristina armata n. sp. (Clitellata: Naididae: Pristininae) from a carnivorous plant (Nepenthes sp.) in Borneo, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schenková, Jana; Čermák, Václav

    2013-01-01

    A new clitellate species of Pristininae (Naididae), Pristina armata n. sp., found in the pitcher of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes sp., is reported from East Kalimantan, Indonesia. P. armata n. sp. is a very small clitellate, less than 1 mm long in fixed state, and without proboscis on the prostomium. Signs of reproduction by paratomy were observed, but the generic placement remains preliminary because sexually mature individuals were not found. P. armata n. sp. is characterized by giant hook-like dorsal chaetae at IV. The description of P. armata n. sp. was based on six fixed specimens of different size and stage of development. Noteworthy is the habitat of P. armata n. sp. in Nepenthes pitchers, this being the first clitellate species described from such a habitat. P. armata n. sp. may be a member of the nepenthebionts' community, realizing its life cycle inside the digestive fluid of the Nepenthes pitcher, or it belongs to nepenthephiles, species that commonly occur in this habitat but do not specialize on it. PMID:26473244

  19. Functional characterization of a class III acid endochitinase from the traps of the carnivorous pitcher plant genus, Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rottloff, Sandy; Stieber, Regina; Maischak, Heiko; Turini, Florian G; Heubl, Günther; Mithöfer, Axel

    2011-08-01

    Carnivory in plants is an adaptation strategy to nutrient-poor environments and soils. Carnivorous plants obtain some additional mineral nutrients by trapping and digesting prey; the genus Nepenthes is helped by its specialized pitcher traps. To make the nutrients available, the caught prey needs to be digested, a process that requires the concerted activity of several hydrolytic enzymes. To identify and investigate the various enzymes involved in this process, fluid from Nepenthes traps has been analysed in detail. In this study, a novel type of Nepenthes endochitinase was identified in the digestion fluid of closed pitchers. The encoding endochitinase genes have been cloned from eight different Nepenthes species. Among these, the deduced amino acid sequence similarity was at least 94.9%. The corresponding cDNA from N. rafflesiana was heterologously expressed, and the purified protein, NrChit1, was biochemically characterized. The enzyme, classified as a class III acid endochitinase belonging to family 18 of the glycoside hydrolases, is secreted into the pitcher fluid very probably due to the presence of an N-terminal signal peptide. Transcriptome analyses using real-time PCR indicated that the presence of prey in the pitcher up-regulates the endochitinase gene not only in the glands, which are responsible for enzyme secretion, but at an even higher level, in the glands' surrounding tissue. These results suggest that in the pitchers' tissues, the endochitinase as well as other proteins from the pitcher fluid might fulfil a different, primary function as pathogenesis-related proteins. PMID:21633084

  20. Contribution of pitcher fragrance and fluid viscosity to high prey diversity in a Nepenthes carnivorous plant from Borneo

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Bruno Di Giusto; Vladimir Grosbois; Elodie Fargeas; David J Marshall; Laurence Gaume

    2008-03-01

    Mechanisms that improve prey richness in carnivorous plants may involve three crucial phases of trapping: attraction, capture and retention. Nepenthes rafflesiana var. typica is an insectivorous pitcher plant that is widespread in northern Borneo. It exhibits ontogenetic pitcher dimorphism with the upper pitchers trapping more flying prey than the lower pitchers. While this difference in prey composition has been ascribed to differences in attraction, the contribution of capture and retention has been overlooked. This study focused on distinguishing between the prey trapping mechanisms, and assessing their relative contribution to prey diversity. Arthropod richness and diversity of both visitors and prey in the two types of pitchers were analysed to quantify the relative contribution of attraction to prey trapping. Rate of insect visits to the different pitcher parts and the presence or absence of a sweet fragrance was recorded to clarify the origin and mechanism of attraction. The mechanism of retention was studied by insect bioassays and measurements of fluid viscosity. Nepenthes rafflesiana was found to trap a broader prey spectrum than that previously described for any Nepenthes species, with the upper pitchers attracting and trapping a greater quantity and diversity of prey items than the lower pitchers. Capture efficiency was low compared with attraction or retention efficiency. Fragrance of the peristome, or nectar rim, accounted mainly for the observed non-specific, better prey attraction by the upper pitchers, while the retentive properties of the viscous fluid in these upper pitchers arguably explains the species richness of their flying prey. The pitchers of N. rafflesiana are therefore more than simple pitfall traps and the digestive fluid plays an important yet unsuspected role in the ecological success of the species.

  1. Isolation and characterization of novel lipases from a metagenomic library of the microbial community in the pitcher fluid of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes hybrida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morohoshi, Tomohiro; Oikawa, Manabu; Sato, Shoko; Kikuchi, Noriko; Kato, Norihiro; Ikeda, Tsukasa

    2011-10-01

    Members of the genus Nepenthes are carnivorous plants that use the pitfall method of insect capture as a supplementary nutritional source. We extracted metagenomic DNA from the microbial community found in the pitcher fluid of Nepenthes and constructed a plasmid-based metagenomic library. An activity-based screening method enabled the isolation of two lipase genes, lip1 and lip2. Both Lip1 and Lip2 belong to a novel family or subfamily of lipases and show lipase activities in acidic conditions, such as those found in pitcher fluid. This study was conducted under the assumption that the secreted Lip1 and Lip2 were capable of enzymatic activity in the acidic pitcher fluid. PMID:21778111

  2. Composite structure and properties of the pitcher surface of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes and its influence on the insect attachment system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lixin Wang; Qiang Zhou; Yongjun Zheng; Shuyan Xu

    2009-01-01

    Pitchers of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes have evolved specialized organs serving the purpose of attracting,capturing,retaining and digesting small animals,mostly insects.They consist of several well distinguishable zones,including a leaf-like lid,a collar-like peristome,a slippery zone and a digestive zone,differing in morphology,microstructure,chemical composition and physical properties.Discriminating zones display different functions,and the combined effects of several zones result in great trapping efficiency.The principal aim of this review is to introduce the structure and physiochemical properties of the pitcher surface,as well as the interaction between the pitcher surface and the insect attachment systems.Combining with our present study,the potential application of the pitcher surface being utilized in bionics to manufacture insect slippery trapping plates is discussed,and the original research direction of the pitcher surface and its application on agricultural pest control is highlighted.

  3. Biochemical characterization of a recombinant plant class III chitinase from the pitcher of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishisaki, Kana; Arai, Sachiko; Hamada, Tatsuro; Honda, Yuji

    2012-11-01

    A class III chitinase belonging to the GH18 family from Nepenthes alata (NaCHIT3) was expressed in Escherichia coli. The enzyme exhibited hydrolytic activity toward colloidal chitin, ethylene glycol chitin, and (GlcNAc)(n) (n=5 and 6). The enzyme hydrolyzed the fourth glycosidic linkage from the non-reducing end of (GlcNAc)(6). The anomeric form of the products indicated it was a retaining enzyme. The colloidal chitin hydrolytic reaction displayed high activity between pH 3.9 and 6.9, but the pH optimum of the (GlcNAc)(6) hydrolytic reaction was 3.9 at 37 °C. The optimal temperature for activity was 65 °C in 50 mM sodium acetate buffer (pH 3.9). The pH optima of NaCHIT3 and NaCHIT1 might be related to their roles in chitin degradation in the pitcher fluid. PMID:23026711

  4. Heterogonous expression and characterization of a plant class IV chitinase from the pitcher of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishisaki, Kana; Honda, Yuji; Taniguchi, Hajime; Hatano, Naoya; Hamada, Tatsuro

    2012-03-01

    A class IV chitinase belonging to the glycoside hydrolase 19 family from Nepenthes alata (NaCHIT1) was expressed in Escherichia coli. The enzyme exhibited weak activity toward polymeric substrates and significant activity toward (GlcNAc)(n) [β-1,4-linked oligosaccharide of GlcNAc with a polymerization degree of n (n = 4-6)]. The enzyme hydrolyzed the third and fourth glycosidic linkages from the non-reducing end of (GlcNAc)(6). The pH optimum of the enzymatic reaction was 5.5 at 37°C. The optimal temperature for activity was 60°C in 50 mM sodium acetate buffer (pH 5.5). The anomeric form of the products indicated that it was an inverting enzyme. The k(cat)/K(m) of the (GlcNAc)(n) hydrolysis increased with an increase in the degree of polymerization. Amino acid sequence alignment analysis between NaCHIT1 and a class IV chitinase from a Picea abies (Norway spruce) suggested that the deletion of four loops likely led the enzyme to optimize the (GlcNAc)(n) hydrolytic reaction rather than the hydrolysis of polymeric substrates. PMID:21930651

  5. RNA-seq analysis for plant carnivory gene discovery in Nepenthes × ventrata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan Zakaria, Wan Nor Adibah; Loke, Kok-Keong; Goh, Hoe-Han; Mohd Noor, Normah

    2016-03-01

    Carnivorous plants have the ability to capture and digest insects for nutrients, which allows them to survive in land deprived of nitrogenous nutrients. Nepenthes spp. are one of the carnivorous plants, which uniquely produce pitcher from the tip of an elongated leaf. This study provides the first transcriptome resource from pitcher of a Nepenthes ventricosa × Nepenthes alata hybrid, Nepenthes × ventrata to understand carnivory mechanism in Nepenthes spp., as well as in other carnivorous species. Raw reads and the transcriptome assembly project have been deposited to SRA database with the accession numbers SRX1389337 (day 0 control), SRX1389392 (day 3 longevity), and SRX1389395 (day 3 chitin-treated). PMID:26981352

  6. RNA-seq analysis for plant carnivory gene discovery in Nepenthes × ventrata

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan Nor Adibah Wan Zakaria

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Carnivorous plants have the ability to capture and digest insects for nutrients, which allows them to survive in land deprived of nitrogenous nutrients. Nepenthes spp. are one of the carnivorous plants, which uniquely produce pitcher from the tip of an elongated leaf. This study provides the first transcriptome resource from pitcher of a Nepenthes ventricosa × Nepenthes alata hybrid, Nepenthes × ventrata to understand carnivory mechanism in Nepenthes spp., as well as in other carnivorous species. Raw reads and the transcriptome assembly project have been deposited to SRA database with the accession numbers SRX1389337 (day 0 control, SRX1389392 (day 3 longevity, and SRX1389395 (day 3 chitin-treated.

  7. Endocytotic uptake of nutrients in carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adlassnig, Wolfram; Koller-Peroutka, Marianne; Bauer, Sonja; Koshkin, Edith; Lendl, Thomas; Lichtscheidl, Irene K

    2012-07-01

    Carnivorous plants trap, digest and absorb animals in order to supplement their mineral nutrition. Nutrients absorbed by the plant include different nitrogen species, phosphate, potassium, trace elements and small organic compounds. Uptake is usually thought to be performed via specific channels, but this study provides evidence that endocytosis is involved as well. Traps of the carnivorous plants Nepenthes coccinea, Nepenthes ventrata, Cephalotus follicularis, Drosophyllum lusitanicum, Drosera capensis, Dionaea muscipula, Aldrovanda vesiculosa, Genlisea violacea × lobata, Sarracenia psittacina and Sarracenia purpurea were stained with methylene blue in order to identify possible sites of uptake. The permeable parts of the traps were incubated with fluorescein isothiocyanate labelled bovine serum albumin (FITC-BSA) and other fluorescent endocytosis markers, combined with the soluble protein BSA or respiratory inhibitors. Uptake was studied by confocal microscopy. In Nepenthes, small fluorescent vesicles became visible 1 h after incubation with FITC-BSA. These vesicles fused to larger compartments within 30 h. A similar behaviour was found in the related genera Drosera, Dionaea, Aldrovanda and Drosophyllum but also in Cephalotus with glands of different evolutionary origin. In Genlisea and Sarracenia, no evidence for endocytosis was found. We propose that in many carnivorous plants, nutrient uptake by carriers is supplemented by endocytosis, which enables absorption and intracellular digestion of whole proteins. The advantage for the plant of reducing secretion of enzymes for extracellular digestion is evident. PMID:22417315

  8. Fluorescent prey traps in carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurup, R; Johnson, A J; Sankar, S; Hussain, A A; Sathish Kumar, C; Sabulal, B

    2013-05-01

    Carnivorous plants acquire most of their nutrients by capturing ants, insects and other arthropods through their leaf-evolved biological traps. So far, the best-known attractants in carnivorous prey traps are nectar, colour and olfactory cues. Here, fresh prey traps of 14 Nepenthes, five Sarracenia, five Drosera, two Pinguicula species/hybrids, Dionaea muscipula and Utricularia stellaris were scanned at UV 366 nm. Fluorescence emissions of major isolates of fresh Nepenthes khasiana pitcher peristomes were recorded at an excitation wavelength of 366 nm. N. khasiana field pitcher peristomes were masked by its slippery zone extract, and prey capture rates were compared with control pitchers. We found the existence of distinct blue fluorescence emissions at the capture spots of Nepenthes, Sarracenia and Dionaea prey traps at UV 366 nm. These alluring blue emissions gradually developed with the growth of the prey traps and diminished towards their death. On excitation at 366 nm, N. khasiana peristome 3:1 CHCl3–MeOH extract and its two major blue bands showed strong fluorescence emissions at 430–480 nm. Masking of blue emissions on peristomes drastically reduced prey capture in N. khasiana pitchers. We propose these molecular emissions as a critical factor attracting arthropods and other visitors to these carnivorous traps. Drosera, Pinguicula and Utricularia prey traps showed only red chlorophyll emissions at 366 nm. PMID:23696970

  9. Insectivore Plants Nepenthes sp. at Mount Merbabu

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    AHMAD DWI SETYAWAN

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available The aims of the research were to know the existence of the Nepenthes at mount Merbabu, variations of its morphology, associated plants, and ecological conditions. Nepenthes are one of plants that were categorized as conserved plant by Indonesian government as indicated in PPRI No. 7/1999. Many researchers attracted to study this unique plant since it’s distinct feature and the way to get nutrient by trapping insects at its sac. Samples were taken randomly along the path for climbing from Selo, Boyolali to the top of the mountain between April to May 2000. The results show that the plants were found at the altitude of around 1500 to 2000 tsl. There were two forms of the sacs, long and short at the same individual plants. The plants grow coiling on Myristica trees and shrubs of Thunbergia fragrans Roxb., and also could grow at the stoned-soil.

  10. A Viscoelastic Deadly Fluid in Carnivorous Pitcher Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaume, Laurence; Forterre, Yoel

    2008-07-01

    We study the rheology of the digestive fluid secreted by the carnivorous pitcher plants Nepenthes rafflesiana and its role in the mechanism of insects trapping. Using a combination of physical measurements (surface tension, wetting properties, extensional and shear rheometry), insects bioessays and high-speed video, we show that the digestive fluid of Nepenthes rafflesiana is a highly viscoelastic fluid and that this property is crucial for the retention of insect in its trap. Trapping efficiency is shown to remain strong even when the fluid is highly diluted by water, as long as the elastic relaxation time of the fluid is higher than the typical time scale of insect movements (large Deborah numbers).

  11. [Nepenthe].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kakridis, F I

    2011-01-01

    Iliad and Odyssey are two major literary sources on various phenomena related to human experience and knowledge. In the Odyssey we find references to the nepenthes, a mythical substance which can change the mood, causing sorrow and anger to be forgotten. We can not identify it with any of the well known substances that have these properties, such as opium from the opium poppy, the Egyptian kyfi or cannabis in the Scythians. Ancient Greeks used various anxiolytic, hypnotic and narcotic substances, but phenomena of addiction or withdrawal are not clearly described, with the exception of wine. Wine was used to lighten peoples minds and hearts, as well as a vehicle for drugs. Many ancient sources describe the negative effects of wine abuse. The study of ancient texts, from Homer's epics to Christian literature, allows a fundamental insight into the influence of psychotropic substances and alcohol on the human psyche. PMID:21688521

  12. A viscoelastic deadly fluid in carnivorous pitcher plants

    OpenAIRE

    Laurence Gaume; Yoel Forterre

    2007-01-01

    International audience Background : The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the k...

  13. A viscoelastic deadly fluid in carnivorous pitcher plants

    OpenAIRE

    Gaume, Laurence; Forterre, Yoël

    2007-01-01

    Background : The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the key trapping devices. Howev...

  14. Expression and characterization of plant aspartic protease nepenthesin-1 from Nepenthes gracilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadek, Alan; Tretyachenko, Vyacheslav; Mrazek, Hynek; Ivanova, Ljubina; Halada, Petr; Rey, Martial; Schriemer, David C; Man, Petr

    2014-03-01

    Carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes produce their own aspartic proteases, nepenthesins, to digest prey trapped in their pitchers. Nepenthesins differ significantly in sequence from other aspartic proteases in the animal or even plant kingdoms. This difference, which also brings more cysteine residues into the structure of these proteases, can be a cause of uniquely high temperature and pH stabilities of nepenthesins. Their detailed structure characterization, however, has not previously been possible due to low amounts of protease present in the pitcher fluid and also due to limited accessibility of Nepenthes plants. In the present study we describe a convenient way for obtaining high amounts of nepenthesin-1 from Nepenthes gracilis using heterologous production in Escherichia coli. The protein can be easily refolded in vitro and its characteristics are very close to those described for a natural enzyme isolated from the pitcher fluid. Similarly to the natural enzyme, recombinant nepenthesin-1 is sensitive to denaturing and reducing agents. It also has maximal activity around pH 2.5, shows unusual stability at high pH and its activity is not irreversibly inhibited even after prolonged incubation in the basic pH range. On the other hand, temperature stability of the recombinant enzyme is lower in comparison with the natural enzyme, which can be attributed to missing N-glycosylation in the recombinant protein. PMID:24365662

  15. A viscoelastic deadly fluid in carnivorous pitcher plants.

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    Laurence Gaume

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the key trapping devices. However, the occurrence of species lacking such epidermal specializations but still effective at trapping insects suggests the possible implication of other mechanisms. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a combination of insect bioassays, high-speed video and rheological measurements, we show that the digestive fluid of Nepenthes rafflesiana is highly viscoelastic and that this physical property is crucial for the retention of insects in its traps. Trapping efficiency is shown to remain strong even when the fluid is highly diluted by water, as long as the elastic relaxation time of the fluid is higher than the typical time scale of insect movements. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This finding challenges the common classification of Nepenthes pitchers as simple passive traps and is of great adaptive significance for these tropical plants, which are often submitted to high rainfalls and variations in fluid concentration. The viscoelastic trap constitutes a cryptic but potentially widespread adaptation of Nepenthes species and could be a homologous trait shared through common ancestry with the sundew (Drosera flypaper plants. Such large production of a highly viscoelastic biopolymer fluid in permanent pools is nevertheless unique in the plant kingdom and suggests novel applications for pest control.

  16. Nutritional benefit from leaf litter utilization in the pitcher plant Nepenthes ampullaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlovič, Andrej; Slováková, Ludmila; Šantrůček, Jiří

    2011-11-01

    The pitcher plant Nepenthes ampullaria has an unusual growth pattern, which differs markedly from other species in the carnivorous genus Nepenthes. Its pitchers have a reflexed lid and sit above the soil surface in a tighly packed 'carpet'. They contain a significant amount of plant-derived materials, suggesting that this species is partially herbivorous. We tested the hypothesis that the plant benefits from leaf litter utilization by increased photosynthetic efficiency sensu stricto cost/benefit model. Stable nitrogen isotope abundance indicated that N. ampullaria derived around 41.7 ± 5.5% of lamina and 54.8 ± 7.0% of pitcher nitrogen from leaf litter. The concentrations of nitrogen and assimilation pigments, and the rate of net photosynthesis (A(N)), increased in the lamina as a result of feeding, but did not increase in the trap. However, maximal (F(v) /F(m)) and effective photochemical quantum yield of photosystem II (Φ(PSII)) were unaffected. Our data indicate that N. ampullaria benefits from leaf litter utilization and our study provides the first experimental evidence that the unique nitrogen sequestration strategy of N. ampullaria provides benefits in term of photosynthesis and growth. PMID:21707655

  17. With a flick of the lid: a novel trapping mechanism in Nepenthes gracilis pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Di Giusto, Bruno; Skepper, Jeremy; Grafe, T Ulmar; Federle, Walter

    2012-01-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants capture prey with modified leaves (pitchers), using diverse mechanisms such as 'insect aquaplaning' on the wet pitcher rim, slippery wax crystals on the inner pitcher wall, and viscoelastic retentive fluids. Here we describe a new trapping mechanism for Nepenthes gracilis which has evolved a unique, semi-slippery wax crystal surface on the underside of the pitcher lid and utilises the impact of rain drops to 'flick' insects into the trap. Depending on the experimental conditions (simulated 'rain', wet after 'rain', or dry), insects were captured mainly by the lid, the peristome, or the inner pitcher wall, respectively. The application of an anti-slip coating to the lower lid surface reduced prey capture in the field. Compared to sympatric N. rafflesiana, N. gracilis pitchers secreted more nectar under the lid and less on the peristome, thereby directing prey mainly towards the lid. The direct contribution to prey capture represents a novel function of the pitcher lid. PMID:22719998

  18. Four New Species of Nepenthes L. (Nepenthaceae) from the Central Mountains of Mindanao, Philippines

    OpenAIRE

    Thomas Gronemeyer; Fulgent Coritico; Andreas Wistuba; David Marwinski; Tobias Gieray; Marius Micheler; François Sockhom Mey; Victor Amoroso

    2014-01-01

    Together with the islands of Sumatra (Indonesia) and Borneo (Indonesia, Malaysia), the Philippines are the main center of diversity for carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus, Nepenthes L. Nepenthes are the largest of all carnivorous plants, and the species with the biggest pitchers are capable of trapping and digesting small amphibians and even mammals. The central cordillera of Mindanao Island in the south of the Philippines is mostly covered with old, primary forest and is the largest rem...

  19. Carnivorous pitcher plants: insights in an old topic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mithöfer, Axel

    2011-09-01

    Plant insect interactions are usually recognized as a scenario where herbivorous insects feed on a host plant. However, also the opposite situation is known, where plants feed on insects. Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes as well as other pitcher plants obtain many nutrients from caught insect prey. Special features of the pitcher traps' surface are responsible for attraction and trapping insects. Once caught, the prey is digested in the fluid of the pitchers to release nutrients and make them available for the plant. Nutrients are taken up by special glands localized on the inner surface of the pitchers. These glands also secrete the hydrolyzing enzymes into the digestion fluid. Although this is known for more than 100 years, our knowledge of the pitcher fluid composition is still limited. Only in recent years some enzymes have been purified from the pitcher fluid and their corresponding genes could be identified. Among them, many pathogenesis-related proteins have been identified, most of which exhibiting hydrolytic activities. The role of these proteins as well as the role of secondary metabolites, which have been identified in the pitcher fluid, is discussed in general and in the context of further studies on carnivorous plants that might give answers to basic questions in plant biology. PMID:21185041

  20. A unique resource mutualism between the giant Bornean pitcher plant, Nepenthes rajah, and members of a small mammal community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenwood, Melinda; Clarke, Charles; Lee, Ch'ien C; Gunsalam, Ansou; Clarke, Rohan H

    2011-01-01

    The carnivorous pitcher plant genus Nepenthes grows in nutrient-deficient substrates and produce jug-shaped leaf organs (pitchers) that trap arthropods as a source of N and P. A number of Bornean Nepenthes demonstrate novel nutrient acquisition strategies. Notably, three giant montane species are engaged in a mutualistic association with the mountain treeshrew, Tupaia montana, in which the treeshrew defecates into the pitchers while visiting them to feed on nectar secretions on the pitchers' lids.Although the basis of this resource mutualism has been elucidated, many aspects are yet to be investigated. We sought to provide insights into the value of the mutualism to each participant. During initial observations we discovered that the summit rat, R. baluensis, also feeds on sugary exudates of N. rajah pitchers and defecates into them, and that this behavior appears to be habitual. The scope of the study was therefore expanded to assess to what degree N. rajah interacts with the small mammal community.We found that both T. montana and R. baluensis are engaged in a mutualistic interaction with N. rajah. T .montana visit pitchers more frequently than R. baluensis, but daily scat deposition rates within pitchers do not differ, suggesting that the mutualistic relationships are of a similar strength. This study is the first to demonstrate that a mutualism exists between a carnivorous plant species and multiple members of a small mammal community. Further, the newly discovered mutualism between R. baluensis and N. rajah represents only the second ever example of a multidirectional resource-based mutualism between a mammal and a carnivorous plant. PMID:21695073

  1. Interspecific variation in prey capture behavior by co-occurring Nepenthes pitcher plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Lijin; Chung, Arthur YC; Clarke, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture a wide range of arthropod prey for nutritional benefit, using complex combinations of visual and olfactory signals and gravity-driven pitfall trapping mechanisms. In many localities throughout Southeast Asia, several Nepenthes different species occur in mixed populations. Often, the species present at any given location have strongly divergent trap structures and preliminary surveys indicate that different species trap different combinations of arthropod prey, even when growing at the same locality. On this basis, it has been proposed that co-existing Nepenthes species may be engaged in niche segregation with regards to arthropod prey, avoiding direct competition with congeners by deploying traps that have modifications that enable them to target specific prey types. We examined prey capture among 3 multi-species Nepenthes populations in Borneo, finding that co-existing Nepenthes species do capture different combinations of prey, but that significant interspecific variations in arthropod prey combinations can often be detected only at sub-ordinal taxonomic ranks. In all lowland Nepenthes species examined, the dominant prey taxon is Formicidae, but montane Nepenthes trap few (or no) ants and 2 of the 3 species studied have evolved to target alternative sources of nutrition, such as tree shrew feces. Using similarity and null model analyses, we detected evidence for niche segregation with regards to formicid prey among 5 lowland, sympatric Nepenthes species in Sarawak. However, we were unable to determine whether these results provide support for the niche segregation hypothesis, or whether they simply reflect unquantified variation in heterogeneous habitats and/or ant communities in the study sites. These findings are used to propose improvements to the design of field experiments that seek to test hypotheses about targeted prey capture patterns in Nepenthes. PMID:24481246

  2. Bacterial diversity and composition in the fluid of pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, Yayoi; Chaffron, Samuel; Salcher, Michaela M; Shimizu-Inatsugi, Rie; Kobayashi, Masaki J; Diway, Bibian; von Mering, Christian; Pernthaler, Jakob; Shimizu, Kentaro K

    2015-07-01

    Pitchers are modified leaves used by carnivorous plants for trapping prey. Their fluids contain digestive enzymes from the plant and they harbor abundant microbes. In this study, the diversity of bacterial communities was assessed in Nepenthes pitcher fluids and the composition of the bacterial community was compared to that in other environments, including the phyllosphere of Arabidopsis, animal guts and another pitcher plant, Sarracenia. Diversity was measured by 454 pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons. A total of 232,823 sequences were obtained after chimera and singleton removal that clustered into 3260 distinct operational taxonomic units (OTUs) (3% dissimilarity), which were taxonomically distributed over 17 phyla, 25 classes, 45 orders, 100 families, and 195 genera. Pyrosequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization yielded similar estimates of community composition. Most pitchers contained high proportions of unique OTUs, and only 22 OTUs (<0.6%) were shared by ≥14/16 samples, suggesting a unique bacterial assemblage in each pitcher at the OTU level. Diversity analysis at the class level revealed that the bacterial communities of both opened and unopened pitchers were most similar to that of Sarracenia and to that in the phyllosphere. Therefore, the bacterial community in pitchers may be formed by environmental filtering and/or by phyllosphere bacteria. PMID:26138047

  3. Bacterial communities associated with the pitcher fluids of three Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae) pitcher plant species growing in the wild.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chou, Lee Yiung; Clarke, Charles M; Dykes, Gary A

    2014-10-01

    Nepenthes pitcher plants produce modified jug-shaped leaves to attract, trap and digest insect prey. We used 16S rDNA cloning and sequencing to compare bacterial communities in pitcher fluids of each of three species, namely Nepenthes ampullaria, Nepenthes gracilis and Nepenthes mirabilis, growing in the wild. In contrast to previous greenhouse-based studies, we found that both opened and unopened pitchers harbored bacterial DNA. Pitchers of N. mirabilis had higher bacterial diversity as compared to other Nepenthes species. The composition of the bacterial communities could be different between pitcher types for N. mirabilis (ANOSIM: R = 0.340, p Nepenthes species had similar bacterial composition between pitcher types. SIMPER showed that more than 50 % of the bacterial taxa identified from the open pitchers of N. mirabilis were not found in other groups. Our study suggests that bacteria in N. mirabilis are divided into native and nonnative groups. PMID:25005571

  4. Diversity and Growth Behaviour of Nepenthes (Pitcher Plants in Tanjung Puting National Park, Central Kalimantan Province

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    DODO

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Nepenthes is one of the popular genus of pitcher plants. Research on the biodiversity and growth beharviour of Nepenthes spp. in Tanjung Puting National Park was carried out. There were four species studied, namely: N. ampullaria, N. mirabilis N. rafflesiana, and N. x. hookeriana,. There were about 2096 individuals recorded in this study consisting of 1322 N. ampullaria, 1332 N. mirabilis, 141 N. rafflesiana, and 111 N. x. hookeriana. Variation of tendril positions occurred in 1 rosette plant and 3 climbing stems (mature plants of N. ampullaria, 2 rosettes and 9 mature N. mirabilis, 1 rosette and 4 mature N. rafflesiana, 2 rosettes and 2 mature N. x. hookeriana. Their habitats were also very specific. It was noted that 6 species of other plants were grown and associated with the Nepenthes spp.

  5. Structural and functional characteristics of S-like ribonucleases from carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishimura, Emi; Jumyo, Shinya; Arai, Naoki; Kanna, Kensuke; Kume, Marina; Nishikawa, Jun-ichi; Tanase, Jun-ichi; Ohyama, Takashi

    2014-07-01

    Although the S-like ribonucleases (RNases) share sequence homology with the S-RNases involved in the self-incompatibility mechanism in plants, they are not associated with this mechanism. They usually function in stress responses in non-carnivorous plants and in carnivory in carnivorous plants. In this study, we clarified the structures of the S-like RNases of Aldrovanda vesiculosa, Nepenthes bicalcarata and Sarracenia leucophylla, and compared them with those of other plants. At ten positions, amino acid residues are conserved or almost conserved only for carnivorous plants (six in total). In contrast, two positions are specific to non-carnivorous plants. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the S-like RNases of the carnivorous plants form a group beyond the phylogenetic relationships of the plants. We also prepared and characterized recombinant S-like RNases of Dionaea muscipula, Cephalotus follicularis, A. vesiculosa, N. bicalcarata and S. leucophylla, and RNS1 of Arabidopsis thaliana. The recombinant carnivorous plant enzymes showed optimum activities at about pH 4.0. Generally, poly(C) was digested less efficiently than poly(A), poly(I) and poly(U). The kinetic parameters of the recombinant D. muscipula enzyme (DM-I) and A. thaliana enzyme RNS1 were similar. The k cat/K m of recombinant RNS1 was the highest among the enzymes, followed closely by that of recombinant DM-I. On the other hand, the k cat/K m of the recombinant S. leucophylla enzyme was the lowest, and was ~1/30 of that for recombinant RNS1. The magnitudes of the k cat/K m values or k cat values for carnivorous plant S-like RNases seem to correlate negatively with the dependency on symbionts for prey digestion. PMID:24771022

  6. Fluorescence labelling of phosphatase activity in digestive glands of carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Płachno, B J; Adamec, L; Lichtscheidl, I K; Peroutka, M; Adlassnig, W; Vrba, J

    2006-11-01

    A new ELF (enzyme labelled fluorescence) assay was applied to detect phosphatase activity in glandular structures of 47 carnivorous plant species, especially Lentibulariaceae, in order to understand their digestive activities. We address the following questions: (1) Are phosphatases produced by the plants and/or by inhabitants of the traps? (2) Which type of hairs/glands is involved in the production of phosphatases? (3) Is this phosphatase production a common feature among carnivorous plants or is it restricted to evolutionarily advanced species? Our results showed activity of the phosphatases in glandular structures of the majority of the plants tested, both from the greenhouse and from sterile culture. In addition, extracellular phosphatases can also be produced by trap inhabitants. In Utricularia, activity of phosphatase was detected in internal glands of 27 species from both primitive and advanced sections and different ecological groups. Further positive reactions were found in Genlisea, Pinguicula, Aldrovanda, Dionaea, Drosera, Drosophyllum, Nepenthes, and Cephalotus. In Utricularia and Genlisea, enzymatic secretion was independent of stimulation by prey. Byblis and Roridula are usually considered as "proto-carnivores", lacking digestive enzymes. However, we found high activity of phosphatases in both species. Thus, they should be classified as true carnivores. We suggest that the inflorescence of Byblis and some Pinguicula species might also be an additional "carnivorous organ", which can trap a prey, digest it, and finally absorb available nutrients. PMID:16865659

  7. "Sweet but dangerous": nectaries in carnivorous plants

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    Bartosz J. Płachno

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In carnivorous plants, two types of nectaries occur: extra-floral nectaries, generally associated with prey luring, and floral ones associated with pollination. Nectar produced by extra-floral nectaries not only attracts prey but may also be involved in trapping prey and plays a role in myrmecophily. The diversity of nectary structure in carnivorous plants reflects complicated evolutionary routes in this unique ecological group.

  8. In situ enzyme activity in the dissolved and particulate fraction of the fluid from four pitcher plant species of the genus Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, Yayoi; Salcher, Michaela M; Ushio, Masayuki; Shimizu-Inatsugi, Rie; Kobayashi, Masaki J; Diway, Bibian; von Mering, Christian; Pernthaler, Jakob; Shimizu, Kentaro K

    2011-01-01

    The genus Nepenthes, a carnivorous plant, has a pitcher to trap insects and digest them in the contained fluid to gain nutrient. A distinctive character of the pitcher fluid is the digestive enzyme activity that may be derived from plants and dwelling microbes. However, little is known about in situ digestive enzymes in the fluid. Here we examined the pitcher fluid from four species of Nepenthes. High bacterial density was observed within the fluids, ranging from 7×10(6) to 2.2×10(8) cells ml(-1). We measured the activity of three common enzymes in the fluid: acid phosphatases, β-D-glucosidases, and β-D-glucosaminidases. All the tested enzymes detected in the liquid of all the pitcher species showed activity that considerably exceeded that observed in aquatic environments such as freshwater, seawater, and sediment. Our results indicate that high enzyme activity within a pitcher could assist in the rapid decomposition of prey to maximize efficient nutrient use. In addition, we filtered the fluid to distinguish between dissolved enzyme activity and particle-bound activity. As a result, filtration treatment significantly decreased the activity in all enzymes, while pH value and Nepenthes species did not affect the enzyme activity. It suggested that enzymes bound to bacteria and other organic particles also would significantly contribute to the total enzyme activity of the fluid. Since organic particles are themselves usually colonized by attached and highly active bacteria, it is possible that microbe-derived enzymes also play an important role in nutrient recycling within the fluid and affect the metabolism of the Nepenthes pitcher plant. PMID:21949872

  9. Nepenthes diversity in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve - West Sumatra

    OpenAIRE

    DWI MURTI PUSPITANINGTYAS; HARY WAWANGNINGRUM

    2007-01-01

    Nepenthes is one of carnivorous plants which very popular as ornamental plant. Most of them grow in mountain forest habitat above 1.000 m a.s.l. Sumatra has the richest Nepenthes flora after Borneo, with 29 species. The observation was done in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve - West Sumatra. According to this inventory in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve, there are 6 species can be found in this area, which 5 species are endemic to Sumatra, that are N. pectinata, N. inermis, N. bongso, N. spathu...

  10. Phenolic metabolites in carnivorous plants: Inter-specific comparison and physiological studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kováčik, Jozef; Klejdus, Bořivoj; Repčáková, Klára

    2012-03-01

    Despite intensive phytochemical research, data related to the accumulation of phenols in carnivorous plants include mainly qualitative reports. We have quantified phenolic metabolites in three species: Drosera capensis, Dionaea muscipula and Nepenthes anamensis in the "leaf" (assimilatory part) and the "trap" (digestive part). For comparison, commercial green tea was analysed. Phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL) activities in Dionaea and Nepenthes were higher in the trap than in the leaf while the opposite was found in Drosera. Soluble phenols and majority of phenolic acids were mainly accumulated in the trap among species. Flavonoids were abundant in Drosera and Dionaea traps but not in Nepenthes. Phenolic acids were preferentially accumulated in a glycosidically-bound form and gallic acid was the main metabolite. Green tea contained more soluble phenols and phenolic acids but less quercetin. In vitro experiments with Drosera spathulata revealed that nitrogen deficiency enhances PAL activity, accumulation of phenols and sugars while PAL inhibitor (2-aminoindane-2-phosphonic acid) depleted phenols and some amino acids (but free phenylalanine and sugars were elevated). Possible explanations in physiological, biochemical and ecological context are discussed. PMID:22305064

  11. Microbiome and Biocatalytic Bacteria in Monkey Cup (Nepenthes Pitcher) Digestive Fluid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Xin-Yue; Hong, Kar-Wai; Yin, Wai-Fong; Chan, Kok-Gan

    2016-01-01

    Tropical carnivorous plant, Nepenthes, locally known as "monkey cup", utilises its pitcher as a passive trap to capture insects. It then secretes enzymes into the pitcher fluid to digest the insects for nutrients acquisition. However, little is known about the microbiota and their activity in its pitcher fluid. Eighteen bacteria phyla were detected from the metagenome study in the Nepenthes pitcher fluid. Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria are the dominant phyla in the Nepenthes pitcher fluid. We also performed culturomics approach by isolating 18 bacteria from the Nepenthes pitcher fluid. Most of the bacterial isolates possess chitinolytic, proteolytic, amylolytic, and cellulolytic and xylanolytic activities. Fifteen putative chitinase genes were identified from the whole genome analysis on the genomes of the 18 bacteria isolated from Nepenthes pitcher fluid and expressed for chitinase assay. Of these, six clones possessed chitinase activity. In conclusion, our metagenome result shows that the Nepenthes pitcher fluid contains vast bacterial diversity and the culturomic studies confirmed the presence of biocatalytic bacteria within the Nepenthes pitcher juice which may act in symbiosis for the turn over of insects trapped in the Nepenthes pitcher fluid. PMID:26817720

  12. Four New Species of Nepenthes L. (Nepenthaceae) from the Central Mountains of Mindanao, Philippines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronemeyer, Thomas; Coritico, Fulgent; Wistuba, Andreas; Marwinski, David; Gieray, Tobias; Micheler, Marius; Mey, François Sockhom; Amoroso, Victor

    2014-01-01

    Together with the islands of Sumatra (Indonesia) and Borneo (Indonesia, Malaysia), the Philippines are the main center of diversity for carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus, Nepenthes L. Nepenthes are the largest of all carnivorous plants, and the species with the biggest pitchers are capable of trapping and digesting small amphibians and even mammals. The central cordillera of Mindanao Island in the south of the Philippines is mostly covered with old, primary forest and is the largest remaining cohesive, untouched area of wilderness in the Philippines. In a recent field exploration of two areas of the central cordillera, namely Mount Sumagaya and a section of the Pantaron range, four new taxa of Nepenthes were discovered. These four remarkable new species, N. pantaronensis, N. cornuta, N. talaandig and N. amabilis, are described, illustrated and assessed. PMID:27135505

  13. Four New Species of Nepenthes L. (Nepenthaceae from the Central Mountains of Mindanao, Philippines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Gronemeyer

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Together with the islands of Sumatra (Indonesia and Borneo (Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines are the main center of diversity for carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus, Nepenthes L. Nepenthes are the largest of all carnivorous plants, and the species with the biggest pitchers are capable of trapping and digesting small amphibians and even mammals. The central cordillera of Mindanao Island in the south of the Philippines is mostly covered with old, primary forest and is the largest remaining cohesive, untouched area of wilderness in the Philippines. In a recent field exploration of two areas of the central cordillera, namely Mount Sumagaya and a section of the Pantaron range, four new taxa of Nepenthes were discovered. These four remarkable new species, N. pantaronensis, N. cornuta, N. talaandig and N. amabilis, are described, illustrated and assessed.

  14. Catapulting Tentacles in a Sticky Carnivorous Plant

    OpenAIRE

    Poppinga, Simon; Hartmeyer, Siegfried Richard Heinrich; Seidel, Robin; Masselter, Tom; Hartmeyer, Irmgard; Speck, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Among trapping mechanisms in carnivorous plants, those termed ‘active’ have especially fascinated scientists since Charles Darwin’s early works because trap movements are involved. Fast snap-trapping and suction of prey are two of the most spectacular examples for how these plants actively catch animals, mainly arthropods, for a substantial nutrient supply. We show that Drosera glanduligera, a sundew from southern Australia, features a sophisticated catapult mechanism: Prey animals walking ne...

  15. The use of light in prey capture by the tropical pitcher plant Nepenthes aristolochioides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Jonathan A; Clarke, Charles; Gowen, Brent E

    2012-08-01

    Nepenthes pitcher plants deploy tube-shaped pitchers to catch invertebrate prey; those of Nepenthes aristolochioides possess an unusual translucent dome. The hypothesis was tested that N. aristolochioides pitchers operate as light traps, by quantifying prey capture under three shade treatments. Flies are red-blind, with visual sensitivity maxima in the UV, blue, and green wavebands. Red celluloid filters were used to reduce the transmission of these wavebands into the interior of the pitchers. Those that were shaded at the rear showed a 3-fold reduction in Drosophila caught, relative to either unshaded control pitchers, or pitchers that were shaded at the front. Thus, light transmitted through the translucent dome is a fundamental component of N. aristolochioides' trapping mechanism. PMID:22836498

  16. Overcoming DNA extraction problems from carnivorous plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fleischmann, Andreas

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available We tested previously published protocols for DNA isolation from plants with high contents of polyphenols and polysaccharides for several taxa of carnivorous plants. However, we did not get satisfying results with fresh or silica dried leaf tissue obtained from field collected or greenhouse grown plants, nor from herbarium specimens. Therefore, we have developed a simple modified protocol of the commercially available Macherey- Nagel NucleoSpin® Plant kit for rapid, effective and reproducible isolation of high quality genomic DNA suitable for PCR reactions. DNA extraction can be conducted from both fresh and dried leaf tissue of various carnivorous plant taxa, irrespective of high contents of polysaccharides, phenolic compounds and other secondary plant metabolites that interfere with DNA isolation and amplification.

    Probamos algunos protocolos publicados previamente para el aislamiento del ADN de plantas con alto contenido de polifenoles y polisacáridos para varios táxones de plantas carnívoras. Sin embargo, no conseguimos muy buenos resultados ni con tejidos de hojas frescas, ni con tejidos de hojas secadas en gel de sílice obtenidas de plantas colectadas en el campo o cultivadas en los invernaderos, ni de especímenes de herbario. Por lo tanto, hemos desarrollado un protocolo sencillo, modificado del Macherey- Nagel NucleoSpin® Plant kit disponible en el mercado para el aislamiento rápido, eficaz y reproducible de ADN genómico de alta calidad conveniente para la reacción en cadena de la polimerasa. La extracción del ADN se puede realizar en tejidos de hojas frescas o secas de varios táxones de plantas carnívoras, sin importar el grado de contenido de polisacáridos, compuestos fenólicos u otros metabolitos secundarios que interfieren con el aislamiento y la amplificación del ADN.

  17. Catapulting tentacles in a sticky carnivorous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poppinga, Simon; Hartmeyer, Siegfried Richard Heinrich; Seidel, Robin; Masselter, Tom; Hartmeyer, Irmgard; Speck, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Among trapping mechanisms in carnivorous plants, those termed 'active' have especially fascinated scientists since Charles Darwin's early works because trap movements are involved. Fast snap-trapping and suction of prey are two of the most spectacular examples for how these plants actively catch animals, mainly arthropods, for a substantial nutrient supply. We show that Drosera glanduligera, a sundew from southern Australia, features a sophisticated catapult mechanism: Prey animals walking near the edge of the sundew trigger a touch-sensitive snap-tentacle, which swiftly catapults them onto adjacent sticky glue-tentacles; the insects are then slowly drawn within the concave trap leaf by sticky tentacles. This is the first detailed documentation and analysis of such catapult-flypaper traps in action and highlights a unique and surprisingly complex mechanical adaptation to carnivory. PMID:23049849

  18. Catapulting tentacles in a sticky carnivorous plant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Poppinga

    Full Text Available Among trapping mechanisms in carnivorous plants, those termed 'active' have especially fascinated scientists since Charles Darwin's early works because trap movements are involved. Fast snap-trapping and suction of prey are two of the most spectacular examples for how these plants actively catch animals, mainly arthropods, for a substantial nutrient supply. We show that Drosera glanduligera, a sundew from southern Australia, features a sophisticated catapult mechanism: Prey animals walking near the edge of the sundew trigger a touch-sensitive snap-tentacle, which swiftly catapults them onto adjacent sticky glue-tentacles; the insects are then slowly drawn within the concave trap leaf by sticky tentacles. This is the first detailed documentation and analysis of such catapult-flypaper traps in action and highlights a unique and surprisingly complex mechanical adaptation to carnivory.

  19. Evidence for alternative trapping strategies in two forms of the pitcher plant, Nepenthes rafflesiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Grafe, T Ulmar; Federle, Walter

    2011-06-01

    Nepenthes pitchers are specialized leaves that function as insect traps. Several pitcher components may contribute to trapping, including the pitcher fluid, slippery wax crystals and downward-pointing epidermal cells on the inner pitcher wall, and the wetness-dependent pitcher rim (peristome), but the relative importance of these traits is unclear. Mechanisms of prey capture and retention in the field were investigated by quantifying the effect of 'knock-out' manipulations of individual pitcher structures, and by testing the ability of pitcher fluids and water to retain insects. Two forms of Nepenthes rafflesiana Jack ('elongate' and 'typical') with contrasting combinations of pitcher traits were compared. Wax crystals on the inner pitcher wall were found to be the most important trapping structure in the elongate form, whereas the typical form relied primarily on the peristome. The pitcher fluids of both forms, differing markedly in the degree of viscoelasticity, retained significantly more ants than water. The present results show that pitcher plants utilize several mechanisms for prey capture and retention, varying in efficiency and relative importance between forms. It is proposed that these differences represent alternative prey capture strategies that may provide a mechanism to reduce competition and facilitate species co-existence in nutrient-limited habitats. PMID:21459766

  20. Slippery surfaces of pitcher plants: Nepenthes wax crystals minimize insect attachment via microscopic surface roughness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholz, I; Bückins, M; Dolge, L; Erlinghagen, T; Weth, A; Hischen, F; Mayer, J; Hoffmann, S; Riederer, M; Riedel, M; Baumgartner, W

    2010-04-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes efficiently trap and retain insect prey in highly specialized leaves. Besides a slippery peristome which inhibits adhesion of insects they employ epicuticular wax crystals on the inner walls of the conductive zone of the pitchers to hamper insect attachment by adhesive devices. It has been proposed that the detachment of individual crystals and the resulting contamination of adhesive organs is responsible for capturing insects. However, our results provide evidence in favour of a different mechanism, mainly based on the stability and the roughness of the waxy surface. First, we were unable to detect a large quantity of crystal fragments on the pads of insects detached from mature pitcher surfaces of Nepenthes alata. Second, investigation of the pitcher surface by focused ion beam treatment showed that the wax crystals form a compact 3D structure. Third, atomic force microscopy of the platelet-shaped crystals revealed that the crystals are mechanically stable, rendering crystal detachment by insect pads unlikely. Fourth, the surface profile parameters of the wax layer showed striking similarities to those of polishing paper with low grain size. By measuring friction forces of insects on this artificial surface we demonstrate that microscopic roughness alone is sufficient to minimize insect attachment. A theoretical model shows that surface roughness within a certain length scale will prevent adhesion by being too rough for adhesive pads but not rough enough for claws. PMID:20228348

  1. Nepenthes diversity in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve - West Sumatra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DWI MURTI PUSPITANINGTYAS

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Nepenthes is one of carnivorous plants which very popular as ornamental plant. Most of them grow in mountain forest habitat above 1.000 m a.s.l. Sumatra has the richest Nepenthes flora after Borneo, with 29 species. The observation was done in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve - West Sumatra. According to this inventory in Sulasih Talang Nature Reserve, there are 6 species can be found in this area, which 5 species are endemic to Sumatra, that are N. pectinata, N. inermis, N. bongso, N. spathulata and N. talangensis. N. gracilis is widespread in Sumatra, Borneo and Celebes, whereas the other species N. talangensis is only found in Mount Talang. Threat to those species are, habitat destruction, over exploitation and volcano eruption.

  2. How to catch more prey with less effective traps: explaining the evolution of temporarily inactive traps in carnivorous pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Federle, Walter; Seidel, Hannes; Grafe, T Ulmar; Ioannou, Christos C

    2015-02-22

    Carnivorous Nepenthes pitcher plants capture arthropods with specialized slippery surfaces. The key trapping surface, the pitcher rim (peristome), is highly slippery when wetted by rain, nectar or condensation, but not when dry. As natural selection should favour adaptations that maximize prey intake, the evolution of temporarily inactive traps seems paradoxical. Here, we show that intermittent trap deactivation promotes 'batch captures' of ants. Prey surveys revealed that N. rafflesiana pitchers sporadically capture large numbers of ants from the same species. Continuous experimental wetting of the peristome increased the number of non-recruiting prey, but decreased the number of captured ants and shifted their trapping mode from batch to individual capture events. Ant recruitment was also lower to continuously wetted pitchers. Our experimental data fit a simple model that predicts that intermittent, wetness-based trap activation should allow safe access for 'scout' ants under dry conditions, thereby promoting recruitment and ultimately higher prey numbers. The peristome trapping mechanism may therefore represent an adaptation for capturing ants. The relatively rare batch capture events may particularly benefit larger plants with many pitchers. This explains why young plants of many Nepenthes species additionally employ wetness-independent, waxy trapping surfaces. PMID:25589604

  3. Interspecific variation in prey capture behavior by co-occurring Nepenthes pitcher plants: evidence for resource partitioning or sampling-scheme artifacts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Lijin; Chung, Arthur Y C; Clarke, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture a wide range of arthropod prey for nutritional benefit, using complex combinations of visual and olfactory signals and gravity-driven pitfall trapping mechanisms. In many localities throughout Southeast Asia, several Nepenthes different species occur in mixed populations. Often, the species present at any given location have strongly divergent trap structures and preliminary surveys indicate that different species trap different combinations of arthropod prey, even when growing at the same locality. On this basis, it has been proposed that co-existing Nepenthes species may be engaged in niche segregation with regards to arthropod prey, avoiding direct competition with congeners by deploying traps that have modifications that enable them to target specific prey types. We examined prey capture among 3 multi-species Nepenthes populations in Borneo, finding that co-existing Nepenthes species do capture different combinations of prey, but that significant interspecific variations in arthropod prey combinations can often be detected only at sub-ordinal taxonomic ranks. In all lowland Nepenthes species examined, the dominant prey taxon is Formicidae, but montane Nepenthes trap few (or no) ants and 2 of the 3 species studied have evolved to target alternative sources of nutrition, such as tree shrew feces. Using similarity and null model analyses, we detected evidence for niche segregation with regards to formicid prey among 5 lowland, sympatric Nepenthes species in Sarawak. However, we were unable to determine whether these results provide support for the niche segregation hypothesis, or whether they simply reflect unquantified variation in heterogeneous habitats and/or ant communities in the study sites. These findings are used to propose improvements to the design of field experiments that seek to test hypotheses about targeted prey capture patterns in Nepenthes. PMID:24481246

  4. Expanding the menu for carnivorous plants: Uptake of potassium, iron and manganese by carnivorous pitcher plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adlassnig, Wolfram [University of Vienna, Cell Imaging and Ultrastructure Research Unit, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna (Austria)], E-mail: wolfram.adlassnig@univie.ac.at; Steinhauser, Georg [Vienna University of Technology, Atominstitut der Osterreichischen Universitaeten, Stadionallee 2, A-1020 Vienna (Austria); Peroutka, Marianne [University of Vienna, Cell Imaging and Ultrastructure Research Unit, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna (Austria); Musilek, Andreas; Sterba, Johannes H. [Vienna University of Technology, Atominstitut der Osterreichischen Universitaeten, Stadionallee 2, A-1020 Vienna (Austria); Lichtscheidl, Irene K. [University of Vienna, Cell Imaging and Ultrastructure Research Unit, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna (Austria); Bichler, Max [Vienna University of Technology, Atominstitut der Osterreichischen Universitaeten, Stadionallee 2, A-1020 Vienna (Austria)

    2009-12-15

    Carnivorous plants use animals as fertiliser substitutes which allow them to survive on nutrient deficient soils. Most research concentrated on the uptake of the prey's nitrogen and phosphorus; only little is known on the utilisation of other elements. We studied the uptake of three essential nutrients, potassium, iron and manganese, in three species of carnivorous pitcher plants (Cephalotus follicularis LaBilladiere, Sarracenia purpureaL., Heliamphora nutans Bentham). Using relatively short-lived and {gamma}-emitting radiotracers, we significantly improved the sensitivity compared to conventional protocols and gained the following results. We demonstrated the uptake of trace elements like iron and manganese. In addition, we found direct evidence for the uptake of potassium into the pitcher tissue. Potassium and manganese were absorbed to virtually 100% if offered in physiological concentrations or below in Cephalotus. Analysis of pitcher fluid collected in the natural habitat showed that uptake was performed here as efficiently as in the laboratory. The absorption of nutrients is an active process depending on living glandular cells in the pitcher epidermis and can be inhibited by azide. Unphysiologically high amounts of nutrients were taken up for a short time, but after a few hours the absorbing cells were damaged, and uptake stopped. Absorption rates of pitcher leaves from plants under controlled conditions varied highly, indicating that each trap is functionally independent. The comparison of minerals in typical prey with the plants' tissues showed that a complete coverage of the plants' needs by prey capture is improbable.

  5. Expanding the menu for carnivorous plants: uptake of potassium, iron and manganese by carnivorous pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adlassnig, Wolfram; Steinhauser, Georg; Peroutka, Marianne; Musilek, Andreas; Sterba, Johannes H; Lichtscheidl, Irene K; Bichler, Max

    2009-12-01

    Carnivorous plants use animals as fertiliser substitutes which allow them to survive on nutrient deficient soils. Most research concentrated on the uptake of the prey's nitrogen and phosphorus; only little is known on the utilisation of other elements. We studied the uptake of three essential nutrients, potassium, iron and manganese, in three species of carnivorous pitcher plants (Cephalotus follicularis LaBilladiere, Sarracenia purpureaL., Heliamphora nutans Bentham). Using relatively short-lived and gamma-emitting radiotracers, we significantly improved the sensitivity compared to conventional protocols and gained the following results. We demonstrated the uptake of trace elements like iron and manganese. In addition, we found direct evidence for the uptake of potassium into the pitcher tissue. Potassium and manganese were absorbed to virtually 100% if offered in physiological concentrations or below in Cephalotus. Analysis of pitcher fluid collected in the natural habitat showed that uptake was performed here as efficiently as in the laboratory. The absorption of nutrients is an active process depending on living glandular cells in the pitcher epidermis and can be inhibited by azide. Unphysiologically high amounts of nutrients were taken up for a short time, but after a few hours the absorbing cells were damaged, and uptake stopped. Absorption rates of pitcher leaves from plants under controlled conditions varied highly, indicating that each trap is functionally independent. The comparison of minerals in typical prey with the plants' tissues showed that a complete coverage of the plants' needs by prey capture is improbable. PMID:19428263

  6. Expanding the menu for carnivorous plants: Uptake of potassium, iron and manganese by carnivorous pitcher plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carnivorous plants use animals as fertiliser substitutes which allow them to survive on nutrient deficient soils. Most research concentrated on the uptake of the prey's nitrogen and phosphorus; only little is known on the utilisation of other elements. We studied the uptake of three essential nutrients, potassium, iron and manganese, in three species of carnivorous pitcher plants (Cephalotus follicularis LaBilladiere, Sarracenia purpureaL., Heliamphora nutans Bentham). Using relatively short-lived and γ-emitting radiotracers, we significantly improved the sensitivity compared to conventional protocols and gained the following results. We demonstrated the uptake of trace elements like iron and manganese. In addition, we found direct evidence for the uptake of potassium into the pitcher tissue. Potassium and manganese were absorbed to virtually 100% if offered in physiological concentrations or below in Cephalotus. Analysis of pitcher fluid collected in the natural habitat showed that uptake was performed here as efficiently as in the laboratory. The absorption of nutrients is an active process depending on living glandular cells in the pitcher epidermis and can be inhibited by azide. Unphysiologically high amounts of nutrients were taken up for a short time, but after a few hours the absorbing cells were damaged, and uptake stopped. Absorption rates of pitcher leaves from plants under controlled conditions varied highly, indicating that each trap is functionally independent. The comparison of minerals in typical prey with the plants' tissues showed that a complete coverage of the plants' needs by prey capture is improbable.

  7. Cytochemical and ultrastructural aspects of aquatic carnivorous plant turions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Plachno, B.J.; Adamec, Lubomír; Kozieradzka-Kiszkurno, M.; Świątek, P.; Kamińska, I.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 251, č. 6 (2014), s. 1449-1454. ISSN 0033-183X Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * winter buds * storage functions Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.651, year: 2014

  8. Interspecific variation in prey capture behavior by co-occurring Nepenthes pitcher plants: Evidence for resource partitioning or sampling-scheme artifacts?

    OpenAIRE

    Chin, Lijin; Chung, Arthur YC; Clarke, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture a wide range of arthropod prey for nutritional benefit, using complex combinations of visual and olfactory signals and gravity-driven pitfall trapping mechanisms. In many localities throughout Southeast Asia, several Nepenthes different species occur in mixed populations. Often, the species present at any given location have strongly divergent trap structures and preliminary surveys indicate that different species trap different combinations of ar...

  9. A carnivorous plant fed by its ant symbiont: a unique multi-faceted nutritional mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazile, Vincent; Moran, Jonathan A; Le Moguédec, Gilles; Marshall, David J; Gaume, Laurence

    2012-01-01

    Scarcity of essential nutrients has led plants to evolve alternative nutritional strategies, such as myrmecotrophy (ant-waste-derived nutrition) and carnivory (invertebrate predation). The carnivorous plant Nepenthes bicalcarata grows in the Bornean peatswamp forests and is believed to have a mutualistic relationship with its symbiotic ant Camponotus schmitzi. However, the benefits provided by the ant have not been quantified. We tested the hypothesis of a nutritional mutualism, using foliar isotopic and reflectance analyses and by comparing fitness-related traits between ant-inhabited and uninhabited plants. Plants inhabited by C. schmitzi produced more leaves of greater area and nitrogen content than unoccupied plants. The ants were estimated to provide a 200% increase in foliar nitrogen to adult plants. Inhabited plants also produced more and larger pitchers containing higher prey biomass. C. schmitzi-occupied pitchers differed qualitatively in containing C. schmitzi wastes and captured large ants and flying insects. Pitcher abortion rates were lower in inhabited plants partly because of herbivore deterrence as herbivory-aborted buds decreased with ant occupation rate. Lower abortion was also attributed to ant nutritional service. The ants had higher δ(15)N values than any tested prey, and foliar δ(15)N increased with ant occupation rate, confirming their predatory behaviour and demonstrating their direct contribution to the plant-recycled N. We estimated that N. bicalcarata derives on average 42% of its foliar N from C. schmitzi wastes, (76% in highly-occupied plants). According to the Structure Independent Pigment Index, plants without C. schmitzi were nutrient stressed compared to both occupied plants, and pitcher-lacking plants. This attests to the physiological cost of pitcher production and poor nutrient assimilation in the absence of the symbiont. Hence C. schmitzi contributes crucially to the nutrition of N. bicalcarata, via protection of assimilatory

  10. Phylogeny And Biogeography of the Carnivorous Plant Family Sarraceniaceae

    OpenAIRE

    Davis, Charles Cavender; Ellison, Aaron M.; Butler, Elena D.; Hicks, Emily Jean; Calie, Patrick J.; Bell, Charles D.; Naczi, Robert F. C.

    2012-01-01

    The carnivorous plant family Sarraceniaceae comprises three genera of wetland-inhabiting pitcher plants: Darlingtonia in the northwestern United States, Sarracenia in eastern North America, and Heliamphora in northern South America. Hypotheses concerning the biogeographic history leading to this unusual disjunct distribution are controversial, in part because genus- and species-level phylogenies have not been clearly resolved. Here, we present a robust, species-rich phylogeny of Sarraceniacea...

  11. Ecological Patterns and Processes in Sarracenia Carnivorous Pitcher Plant Fungi

    OpenAIRE

    Boynton, Primrose

    2012-01-01

    The kingdom Fungi is taxonomically and ecologically diverse, containing an estimated 1.5 million species. Fungi include decomposers, pathogens, and plant and animal mutualists. Many fungi are microorganisms, and the processes shaping microbial diversity may be fundamentally different from those that shape plants and animals. However, ecologists do not yet fully understand how fungal species are distributed over space and time. Using fungi that inhabit the water of Sarracenia carnivorous pitch...

  12. A novel type of nutritional ant-plant interaction: ant partners of carnivorous pitcher plants prevent nutrient export by dipteran pitcher infauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharmann, Mathias; Thornham, Daniel G; Grafe, T Ulmar; Federle, Walter

    2013-01-01

    Many plants combat herbivore and pathogen attack indirectly by attracting predators of their herbivores. Here we describe a novel type of insect-plant interaction where a carnivorous plant uses such an indirect defence to prevent nutrient loss to kleptoparasites. The ant Camponotus schmitzi is an obligate inhabitant of the carnivorous pitcher plant Nepenthes bicalcarata in Borneo. It has recently been suggested that this ant-plant interaction is a nutritional mutualism, but the detailed mechanisms and the origin of the ant-derived nutrient supply have remained unexplained. We confirm that N. bicalcarata host plant leaves naturally have an elevated (15)N/(14)N stable isotope abundance ratio (δ(15)N) when colonised by C. schmitzi. This indicates that a higher proportion of the plants' nitrogen is insect-derived when C. schmitzi ants are present (ca. 100%, vs. 77% in uncolonised plants) and that more nitrogen is available to them. We demonstrated direct flux of nutrients from the ants to the host plant in a (15)N pulse-chase experiment. As C. schmitzi ants only feed on nectar and pitcher contents of their host, the elevated foliar δ(15)N cannot be explained by classic ant-feeding (myrmecotrophy) but must originate from a higher efficiency of the pitcher traps. We discovered that C. schmitzi ants not only increase the pitchers' capture efficiency by keeping the pitchers' trapping surfaces clean, but they also reduce nutrient loss from the pitchers by predating dipteran pitcher inhabitants (infauna). Consequently, nutrients the pitchers would have otherwise lost via emerging flies become available as ant colony waste. The plants' prey is therefore conserved by the ants. The interaction between C. schmitzi, N. bicalcarata and dipteran pitcher infauna represents a new type of mutualism where animals mitigate the damage by nutrient thieves to a plant. PMID:23717446

  13. Evidence for competition between carnivorous plants and spiders

    OpenAIRE

    Jennings, David E.; Krupa, James J.; Raffel, Thomas R.; Rohr, Jason R.

    2010-01-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that competition between disparate taxa can be important in determining community structure, yet surprisingly, to our knowledge, no quantitative studies have been conducted on competition between carnivorous plants and animals. To examine potential competition between these taxa, we studied dietary and microhabitat overlap between pink sundews (Drosera capillaris) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae) in the field, and conducted a laboratory experiment examining the e...

  14. Pollen Morphology of some Carnivorous plants from Tripura, India

    OpenAIRE

    Somnath Bhowmik; B. K. Datta

    2013-01-01

    Pollen morphological structure of two carnivorous plant family covering four species of Tripura, India namely Drosera burmannii Vahl (Droseraceae) Utricularia bifida Linnaeus, Utricularia ceruleaea Linnaeus and Utricularia gibba Linnaeus (Lentibulariaceae) have been studied under Scanning Electron Microscope for the first time. Pollen grains of the studied four taxa varied widely among them and could be used for segregating both at generic as well as species level. Pollens of Droseraceae shed...

  15. A Novel Type of Nutritional Ant–Plant Interaction: Ant Partners of Carnivorous Pitcher Plants Prevent Nutrient Export by Dipteran Pitcher Infauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharmann, Mathias; Thornham, Daniel G.; Grafe, T. Ulmar; Federle, Walter

    2013-01-01

    Many plants combat herbivore and pathogen attack indirectly by attracting predators of their herbivores. Here we describe a novel type of insect–plant interaction where a carnivorous plant uses such an indirect defence to prevent nutrient loss to kleptoparasites. The ant Camponotus schmitzi is an obligate inhabitant of the carnivorous pitcher plant Nepenthes bicalcarata in Borneo. It has recently been suggested that this ant–plant interaction is a nutritional mutualism, but the detailed mechanisms and the origin of the ant-derived nutrient supply have remained unexplained. We confirm that N. bicalcarata host plant leaves naturally have an elevated 15N/14N stable isotope abundance ratio (δ15N) when colonised by C. schmitzi. This indicates that a higher proportion of the plants’ nitrogen is insect-derived when C. schmitzi ants are present (ca. 100%, vs. 77% in uncolonised plants) and that more nitrogen is available to them. We demonstrated direct flux of nutrients from the ants to the host plant in a 15N pulse-chase experiment. As C. schmitzi ants only feed on nectar and pitcher contents of their host, the elevated foliar δ15N cannot be explained by classic ant-feeding (myrmecotrophy) but must originate from a higher efficiency of the pitcher traps. We discovered that C. schmitzi ants not only increase the pitchers' capture efficiency by keeping the pitchers’ trapping surfaces clean, but they also reduce nutrient loss from the pitchers by predating dipteran pitcher inhabitants (infauna). Consequently, nutrients the pitchers would have otherwise lost via emerging flies become available as ant colony waste. The plants’ prey is therefore conserved by the ants. The interaction between C. schmitzi, N. bicalcarata and dipteran pitcher infauna represents a new type of mutualism where animals mitigate the damage by nutrient thieves to a plant. PMID:23717446

  16. Ion fluxes across the pitcher walls of three Bornean Nepenthes pitcher plant species: flux rates and gland distribution patterns reflect nitrogen sequestration strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Jonathan A; Hawkins, Barbara J; Gowen, Brent E; Robbins, Samantha L

    2010-03-01

    Nepenthes pitcher plant species differ in their prey capture strategies, prey capture rates, and pitcher longevity. In this study, it is investigated whether or not interspecific differences in nutrient sequestration strategy are reflected in the physiology and microstructure of the pitchers themselves. Using a non-invasive technique (MIFE), ion fluxes in pitchers of Nepenthes ampullaria Jack, Nepenthes bicalcarata Hook.f., and Nepenthes rafflesiana Jack were measured. Scanning electron microscopy was also used to characterize the distribution of glandular and other structures on the inner pitcher walls. The results demonstrate that nutrient sequestration strategy is indeed mirrored in pitcher physiology and microstructure. Species producing long-lived pitchers with low prey capture rates (N. ampullaria, N. bicalcarata) showed lower rates of NH(4)(+) uptake than N. rafflesiana, a species producing short-lived pitchers with high capture rates. Crucially, species dependent upon aquatic commensals (N. ampullaria, N. bicalcarata) actively manipulated H(+) fluxes to maintain less acid pitcher fluid than found in 'typical' species; in addition, these species lacked the lunate cells and epicuticular waxes characteristic of 'typical' insectivorous congeners. An unexpected finding was that ion fluxes occurred in the wax-covered, non-glandular zones in N. rafflesiana. The only candidates for active transport of aqueous ions in these zones appear to be the epidermal cells lying beneath the lunate cells, as these are the only sites not visibly coated with epicuticular waxes. PMID:20150519

  17. Different pitcher shapes and trapping syndromes explain resource partitioning in Nepenthes species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaume, Laurence; Bazile, Vincent; Huguin, Maïlis; Bonhomme, Vincent

    2016-03-01

    Nepenthes pitcher plants display interspecific diversity in pitcher form and diets. This species-rich genus might be a conspicuous candidate for an adaptive radiation. However, the pitcher traits of different species have never been quantified in a comparative study, nor have their possible adaptations to the resources they exploit been tested. In this study, we compare the pitcher features and prey composition of the seven Nepenthes taxa that grow in the heath forest of Brunei (Borneo) and investigate whether these species display different trapping syndromes that target different prey. The Nepenthes species are shown to display species-specific combinations of pitcher shapes, volumes, rewards, attraction and capture traits, and different degrees of ontogenetic pitcher dimorphism. The prey spectra also differ among plant species and between ontogenetic morphotypes in their combinations of ants, flying insects, termites, and noninsect guilds. According to a discriminant analysis, the Nepenthes species collected at the same site differ significantly in prey abundance and composition at the level of order, showing niche segregation but with varying degrees of niche overlap according to pairwise species comparisons. Weakly carnivorous species are first characterized by an absence of attractive traits. Generalist carnivorous species have a sweet odor, a wide pitcher aperture, and an acidic pitcher fluid. Guild specializations are explained by different combinations of morpho-functional traits. Ant captures increase with extrafloral nectar, fluid acidity, and slippery waxy walls. Termite captures increase with narrowness of pitchers, presence of a rim of edible trichomes, and symbiotic association with ants. The abundance of flying insects is primarily correlated with pitcher conicity, pitcher aperture diameter, and odor presence. Such species-specific syndromes favoring resource partitioning may result from local character displacement by competition and/or previous

  18. S-like ribonuclease gene expression in carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishimura, Emi; Kawahara, Minako; Kodaira, Reina; Kume, Marina; Arai, Naoki; Nishikawa, Jun-ichi; Ohyama, Takashi

    2013-11-01

    Functions of S-like ribonucleases (RNases) differ considerably from those of S-RNases that function in self-incompatibility. Expression of S-like RNases is usually induced by low nutrition, vermin damage or senescence. However, interestingly, an Australian carnivorous plant Drosera adelae (a sundew), which traps prey with a sticky digestive liquid, abundantly secretes an S-like RNase DA-I in the digestive liquid even in ordinary states. Here, using D. adelae, Dionaea muscipula (Venus flytrap) and Cephalotus follicularis (Australian pitcher plant), we show that carnivorous plants use S-like RNases for carnivory: the gene da-I encoding DA-I and its ortholog cf-I of C. follicularis are highly expressed and constitutively active in each trap/digestion organ, while the ortholog dm-I of D. muscipula becomes highly active after trapping insects. The da-I promoter is unmethylated only in its trap/digestion organ, glandular tentacles (which comprise a small percentage of the weight of the whole plant), but methylated in other organs, which explains the glandular tentacles-specific expression of the gene and indicates a very rare gene regulation system. In contrast, the promoters of dm-I, which shows induced expression, and cf-I, which has constitutive expression, were not methylated in any organs examined. Thus, it seems that the regulatory mechanisms of the da-I, dm-I and cf-I genes differ from each other and do not correlate with the phylogenetic relationship. The current study suggests that under environmental pressure in specific habitats carnivorous plants have managed to evolve their S-like RNase genes to function in carnivory. PMID:23959189

  19. Fungal root endophytes of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quilliam, Richard S; Jones, David L

    2010-06-01

    As carnivorous plants acquire substantial amounts of nutrients from the digestion of their prey, mycorrhizal associations are considered to be redundant; however, fungal root endophytes have rarely been examined. As endophytic fungi can have profound impacts on plant communities, we aim to determine the extent of fungal root colonisation of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia at two points in the growing season (spring and summer). We have used a culture-dependent method to isolate fungal endophytes and diagnostic polymerase chain reaction methods to determine arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi colonisation. All of the roots sampled contained culturable fungal root endophytes; additionally, we have provided molecular evidence that they also host arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Colonisation showed seasonal differences: Roots in the spring were colonised by Articulospora tetracladia, two isolates of uncultured ectomycorrhizal fungi, an unidentified species of fungal endophyte and Trichoderma viride, which was present in every plant sampled. In contrast, roots in the summer were colonised by Alatospora acuminata, an uncultured ectomycorrhizal fungus, Penicillium pinophilum and an uncultured fungal clone. Although the functional roles of fungal endophytes of D. rotundifolia are unknown, colonisation may (a) confer abiotic stress tolerance, (b) facilitate the acquisition of scarce nutrients particularly at the beginning of the growing season or (c) play a role in nutrient signalling between root and shoot. PMID:20012108

  20. Pollinator-prey conflicts in carnivorous plants: When flower and trap properties mean life or death

    OpenAIRE

    Ashraf M. El-Sayed; John A. Byers; David M Suckling

    2016-01-01

    Insect-pollinated carnivorous plants are expected to have higher fitness if they resolve pollinator-prey conflicts by sparing insects pollinating their flowers while trapping prey insects. We examined whether separation between flowers and traps of the carnivorous sundew species or pollinator preferences for colours of flowers enable these plants to spare pollinators. In addition, we collected odours from flowers and traps of each carnivorous species in order to identify volatile chemicals th...

  1. Pollen Morphology of some Carnivorous plants from Tripura, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Somnath Bhowmik

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Pollen morphological structure of two carnivorous plant family covering four species of Tripura, India namely Drosera burmannii Vahl (Droseraceae Utricularia bifida Linnaeus, Utricularia ceruleaea Linnaeus and Utricularia gibba Linnaeus (Lentibulariaceae have been studied under Scanning Electron Microscope for the first time. Pollen grains of the studied four taxa varied widely among them and could be used for segregating both at generic as well as species level. Pollens of Droseraceae shed in tetrahedral tetrad condition while those of Lentibulariaceae are in monad. The exine sculpture in Droseraceae is spinulose while in Lentibulariaceae it is psilate to faintly gemmate

  2. Bacterial Diversity and Community Structure in Two Bornean Nepenthes Species with Differences in Nitrogen Acquisition Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sickel, Wiebke; Grafe, T Ulmar; Meuche, Ivonne; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Keller, Alexander

    2016-05-01

    Carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes have been studied for over a century, but surprisingly little is known about associations with microorganisms. The two species Nepenthes rafflesiana and Nepenthes hemsleyana differ in their pitcher-mediated nutrient sources, sequestering nitrogen from arthropod prey and arthropods as well as bat faeces, respectively. We expected bacterial communities living in the pitchers to resemble this diet difference. Samples were taken from different parts of the pitchers (leaf, peristome, inside, outside, digestive fluid) of both species. Bacterial communities were determined using culture-independent high-throughput amplicon sequencing. Bacterial richness and community structure were similar in leaves, peristomes, inside and outside walls of both plant species. Regarding digestive fluids, bacterial richness was higher in N. hemsleyana than in N. rafflesiana. Additionally, digestive fluid communities were highly variable in structure, with strain-specific differences in community composition between replicates. Acidophilic taxa were mostly of low abundance, except the genus Acidocella, which strikingly reached extremely high levels in two N. rafflesiana fluids. In N. hemsleyana fluid, some taxa classified as vertebrate gut symbionts as well as saprophytes were enriched compared to N. rafflesiana, with saprophytes constituting potential competitors for nutrients. The high variation in community structure might be caused by a number of biotic and abiotic factors. Nitrogen-fixing bacteria were present in both study species, which might provide essential nutrients to the plant at times of low prey capture and/or rare encounters with bats. PMID:26790863

  3. Nepenthes Mensae

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] (Released 23 July 2002) This image shows relatively smooth plains dotted with some craters and stepped mesas and knobs. This image is located near the highland-lowland boundary scarp in a region called Nepenthes Mensae. These eroded mesas and knobs commonly display a stepped topography. Some of these mesas and knobs have flat ledges partway up their slopes. These ledges are made of more resistant layers of rock and are the last remnants of layers that once were continuous across this entire region. Erosion has completely removed these layers in most places, leaving behind only the small isolated mesas and knobs. This one band IR (band 9 at 12.6 microns) image shows some minor bright and dark textures, which are primarily due to differences in the abundance of rocks on the surface. No significant variation in thermophysical properties of surface materials is visible in this image. The relative uniformity of the surface properties suggests that a process (or processes) has mantled or homogenized the surface layer. The mantling layer in this region is most likely dust. The relatively cool (dark) regions during the day are rocky or indurated materials whereas fine sand and dust are warmer (bright). The brightness levels show daytime surface temperatures, which range from about minus 39 degrees to minus 17 degrees Celsius (minus 38 degrees to plus 1 degrees Fahrenheit). Many of the temperature variations are due to slope effects, with sun-facing slopes warmer than shaded slopes. The dark rings around several of the craters are due to the presence of rocky (cool) material ejected from the crater (best seen near bottom of image). Daytime temperature variations are produced by a combination of topographic (solar heating) and thermophysical (thermal inertia and albedo) effects. The surface morphologies seen in THEMIS daytime IR images due to topographic heating are similar to those seen in previous imagery and MOLA topography.

  4. Attract them anyway: benefits of large, showy flowers in a highly autogamous, carnivorous plant species

    OpenAIRE

    Salces-Castellano, A.; Paniw, M.; Casimiro-Soriguer, R.; Ojeda, F.

    2016-01-01

    Reproductive biology of carnivorous plants has largely been studied on species that rely on insects as pollinators and prey, creating potential conflicts. Autogamous pollination, although present in some carnivorous species, has received less attention. In angiosperms, autogamous self-fertilization is expected to lead to a reduction in flower size, thereby reducing resource allocation to structures that attract pollinators. A notable exception is the carnivorous pyrophyte Drosophyllum lusitan...

  5. The microbial Phyllogeography of the carnivorous plant Sarracenia alata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koopman, Margaret M; Carstens, Bryan C

    2011-05-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants host diverse microbial communities. This plant-microbe association provides a unique opportunity to investigate the evolutionary processes that influence the spatial diversity of microbial communities. Using next-generation sequencing of environmental samples, we surveyed microbial communities from 29 pitcher plants (Sarracenia alata) and compare community composition with plant genetic diversity in order to explore the influence of historical processes on the population structure of each lineage. Analyses reveal that there is a core S. alata microbiome, and that it is similar in composition to animal gut microfaunas. The spatial structure of community composition in S. alata (phyllogeography) is congruent at the deepest level with the dominant features of the landscape, including the Mississippi river and the discrete habitat boundaries that the plants occupy. Intriguingly, the microbial community structure reflects the phylogeographic structure of the host plant, suggesting that the phylogenetic structure of bacterial communities and population genetic structure of their host plant are influenced by similar historical processes. PMID:21431933

  6. Phylogeny and biogeography of the carnivorous plant family Sarraceniaceae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellison, Aaron M; Butler, Elena D; Hicks, Emily Jean; Naczi, Robert F C; Calie, Patrick J; Bell, Charles D; Davis, Charles C

    2012-01-01

    The carnivorous plant family Sarraceniaceae comprises three genera of wetland-inhabiting pitcher plants: Darlingtonia in the northwestern United States, Sarracenia in eastern North America, and Heliamphora in northern South America. Hypotheses concerning the biogeographic history leading to this unusual disjunct distribution are controversial, in part because genus- and species-level phylogenies have not been clearly resolved. Here, we present a robust, species-rich phylogeny of Sarraceniaceae based on seven mitochondrial, nuclear, and plastid loci, which we use to illuminate this family's phylogenetic and biogeographic history. The family and genera are monophyletic: Darlingtonia is sister to a clade consisting of Heliamphora+Sarracenia. Within Sarracenia, two clades were strongly supported: one consisting of S. purpurea, its subspecies, and S. rosea; the other consisting of nine species endemic to the southeastern United States. Divergence time estimates revealed that stem group Sarraceniaceae likely originated in South America 44-53 million years ago (Mya) (highest posterior density [HPD] estimate = 47 Mya). By 25-44 (HPD = 35) Mya, crown-group Sarraceniaceae appears to have been widespread across North and South America, and Darlingtonia (western North America) had diverged from Heliamphora+Sarracenia (eastern North America+South America). This disjunction and apparent range contraction is consistent with late Eocene cooling and aridification, which may have severed the continuity of Sarraceniaceae across much of North America. Sarracenia and Heliamphora subsequently diverged in the late Oligocene, 14-32 (HPD = 23) Mya, perhaps when direct overland continuity between North and South America became reduced. Initial diversification of South American Heliamphora began at least 8 Mya, but diversification of Sarracenia was more recent (2-7, HPD = 4 Mya); the bulk of southeastern United States Sarracenia originated co-incident with Pleistocene glaciation, <3 Mya

  7. Genetic fidelity assessment in micropropagated plants using cytogenetical analysis and heterochromatin distribution: a case study with Nepenthes khasiana Hook f.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devi, Soibam Purnima; Kumaria, Suman; Rao, Satyawada Rama; Tandon, Pramod

    2015-09-01

    Rapid clonal propagation of selected genotypes has been one of the most extensively exploited approaches of biotechnology. However, inclusion of somaclonal variations in tissue-culture-derived plants results in the production of undesirable plant off-types which limits its applications in tissue culture industry. Therefore, the most critical concern has been the maintenance of genetic uniformity of micropropagated plants. Assessment of genetic fidelity in tissue-culture-raised plants of three consecutive regenerations of Nepenthes khasiana has been successfully carried out using chromosome counts and heterochromatin distribution pattern wherein changes in the number of chromosomes and the distribution of AT and GC base pairs were recorded. The cells studied in the plantlets of the first regeneration (23.33 %) showed deviant number of chromosome which was increased to 33.33 % and 40 % in the plantlets of the second and the third regenerations, respectively. Also, 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI)(+) and chromomycin A3 (CMA)(+) binding sites, on an average of 5.74 ± 0.47 and 5.00 ± 0.30, were observed in the plantlets of the first regeneration. Subsequently, DAPI(+) binding sites were increased to 6.61 ± 0.39 and 6.74 ± 0.57 in the plantlets of the second and the third regenerations, respectively, with a corresponding decrease in the CMA(+) binding sites (4.63 ± 0.45 and 4.16 ± 0.47 CMA(+) sites in the plantlets of the second and the third regenerations, respectively). The study reveals an increase in cytological variations in the morphologically similar micropropagated plants of N. khasiana with the subsequent regenerations which further necessitate the determination of genetic integrity of micropropagated plants. PMID:25616932

  8. Shoot branching of the aquatic carnivorous plant Utricularia australis as the key process of plant growth

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 51, č. 1 (2011), 133-148. ISSN 0079-2047 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plant * branching characteristics * mathematical model Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.833, year: 2011

  9. Jasmonic acid and herbivory differentially induce carnivore-attracting plant volatiles in Lima bean plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.; Gols, R.; Ludeking, D.; Posthumus, M.A.

    1999-01-01

    Lima bean plants respond to feeding damage of two-spotted spider mites (Tetranychus urticae) with the emission of a complex blend of volatiles that are products of several different biosynthetic pathways. These volatiles attract the carnivorous mite Phytoseiulus persimilis, a specialist predator of

  10. Evidence for competition between carnivorous plants and spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Krupa, James J; Raffel, Thomas R; Rohr, Jason R

    2010-10-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that competition between disparate taxa can be important in determining community structure, yet surprisingly, to our knowledge, no quantitative studies have been conducted on competition between carnivorous plants and animals. To examine potential competition between these taxa, we studied dietary and microhabitat overlap between pink sundews (Drosera capillaris) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae) in the field, and conducted a laboratory experiment examining the effects of wolf spiders on sundew fitness. In the field, we found that sundews and spiders had a high dietary overlap with each other and with the available arthropod prey. Associations between sundews and spiders depended on spatial scale: both sundews and spiders were found more frequently in quadrats with more abundant prey, but within quadrats, spiders constructed larger webs and located them further away from sundews as the total sundew trapping area increased, presumably to reduce competition. Spiders also constructed larger webs when fewer prey were available. In the laboratory, our experiment revealed that spiders can significantly reduce sundew fitness. Our findings suggest that members of the plant and animal kingdoms can and do compete. PMID:20462904

  11. Factors affecting in vitro seed germination and shoot multiplication of a pitcher plant (Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour. Druce

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tokhao, W

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Mature seeds of a pitcher plant (Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour. Druce were cultured in liquid and solid MS medium (Murashige and Skoog, 1962 supplemented with BA (6-benzyladenine at 1, 3 or 5 mg/l or withcoconut water (20% v/v. The cultures were incubated under light and dark conditions. Seeds germinated only under light incubation and BA supplemented to both types of media, and solid medium with 3 mg/l BAresulted the highest seed germination (26% with good development of seedlings. On the contrary, the addition of coconut water to the basal medium produced poor seed germination and seedling growth. Moreover,all cultures in liquid medium terminated their growth after 6 weeks of culture. Young seedlings were subsequently transferred to fresh media of the same treatments after 15 weeks of seed culture. Multipleshoots were proliferated in all levels of BA after 6 weeks of transferring and more shoots were produced as BA level was increased. However, at high BA level of 5 mg/l, rosetting of shoots occurred while lowering BA level to 3 mg/l, fewer shoots were produced but they were vigorous, larger shoots with complete leaves. Rootdevelopment finally occurred in all BA treatments except the addition of coconut water.To evaluate the potential of shoot multiplication in different strengths of MS macromutrient, two types of explants, viz. shoot explants and stem explants (both approx. 1.5 cm long from in vitro seedlings,were cultured on full-strength MS macronutrient medium, 1/2 MS, 1/4 MS and 1/8 MS medium. Following 16 weeks of culture, shoot production (number/ explant increased in both explant types as the macronutrientstrength decreased. However, when lowering to 1/8 MS, the fewest shoots were produced and exhibited nutrient deficiency of leaf chlorosis. The optimum strength of MS macronutrient for the maximumproduction of normal shoots with complete leaves was 1/2 MS medium while 1/4 MS medium produced the highest shoot number from stem explants but

  12. Quite a few reasons for calling carnivores 'the most wonderful plants in the world'

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Król, E.; Plancho, B. J.; Adamec, Lubomír; Stolarz, M.; Dziubińska, H.; Trebacz, K.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 109, č. 1 (2012), s. 47-64. ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : carnivorous plants * gland functioning * plant excitability Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.449, year: 2012

  13. Iridoid and caffeoyl phenylethanoid glycosides of the endangered carnivorous plant Pinguicula lusitanica L. (Lentibulariaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grevenstuk, T.; Hooft, van der J.J.J.; Vervoort, J.J.M.; Waard, de P.; Romano, A.

    2009-01-01

    This work reports for the first time the identification of the major compounds of Pinguicula lusitanica, an endangered carnivorous plant species, using minimal amounts of plant material. A methanol extract was prepared from in vitro cultured plantlets and analyzed by HPLC–SPE–NMR/HPLC–MS. Three irid

  14. The insect-trapping rim of Nepenthes pitchers: surface structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Federle, Walter

    2009-11-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture prey with a pitfall trap that relies on a micro-structured, slippery surface. The upper pitcher rim (peristome) is fully wettable and causes insects to slip by aquaplaning on a thin water film. The high wettability of the peristome is probably achieved by a combination of hydrophilic surface chemistry, surface roughness and the presence of hygroscopic nectar. Insect foot attachment could be prevented by the delayed drainage of the thin water film between the adhesive pad and the surface. Drainage should be faster for insects with a hairy adhesive system; however, they slip equally on the wet peristome. Therefore the stability of the water film against dewetting appears to be the key factor for aquaplaning. New experimental techniques may help to clarify the detailed function of the pitcher plant peristome and to explore its potential for biomimetic applications. PMID:20009546

  15. Expression and characterization of plant aspartic protease nepenthesin-1 from Nepenthes gracilis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kádek, Alan; Tretyachenko, V.; Mrázek, Hynek; Ivanova, Ljubina; Halada, Petr; Rey, M.; Schriemer, D. C.; Man, Petr

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 95, MAR 2014 (2014), s. 121-128. ISSN 1046-5928 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP206/12/0503; GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.30.0003 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : Plant aspartic protease * Nepenthesin * Protease characterization Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 1.695, year: 2014

  16. STUDY ON THE ROLE OF GLUCANASES IN DIGESTION OF CARNIVOROUS PLANT DROSERA ROTUNDIFOLIA L.

    OpenAIRE

    Jaroslav Michalko; Ildikó Matušíková

    2012-01-01

    Glucanases act as plant defense enzymes which are induced in plants under diverse stress but also non-stress conditions. They have many different roles in plants including normal physiological and developmental processes as well as stress response. Interestingly, in a few earlier studies they have also been detected in the digestive mucilage of traps of carnivorous plants. Here we show that glucanases are present and active in the digestive fluid of sundew. Their activity is upon induction of...

  17. Insecticides reduce survival and the expression of traits associated with carnivory of carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Congelosi, Alexandra M; Rohr, Jason R

    2012-03-01

    While agrochemical pollution is thought to be an important conservation threat to carnivorous plants, the effects of insecticides on these taxa have not been quantified previously. Using a combination of lab- and field-based experiments, we tested the effects of commercial and technical grades of three widely used insecticides (carbaryl, lambda-cyhalothrin, and malathion) on survival and the expression of traits associated with carnivory of pink sundews (Drosera capillaris) and Venus flytraps (Dionaea muscipula). Commercial grades were generally more harmful than technical grades under lab and field conditions, but all three insecticides were capable of reducing both survival and the expression of traits associated with carnivory within recommended application rates. However, pink sundews appeared to be more susceptible to insecticides than Venus flytraps, perhaps because of larger numbers of digestive glands on the leaf surfaces. We make several recommendations for future research directions, such as examining the long-term effects of insecticides on carnivorous plant populations, for example in terms of growth rates and fitness. Additionally, future research should include representative species from a wider-range of carnivorous plant growth forms, and explore the mechanism by which insecticides are harming the plants. Given the effects we observed in the present study, we suggest that the use of insecticides should be carefully managed in areas containing vulnerable carnivorous plant species. PMID:22076028

  18. Pollinator-prey conflicts in carnivorous plants: When flower and trap properties mean life or death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Sayed, Ashraf M; Byers, John A; Suckling, David M

    2016-01-01

    Insect-pollinated carnivorous plants are expected to have higher fitness if they resolve pollinator-prey conflicts by sparing insects pollinating their flowers while trapping prey insects. We examined whether separation between flowers and traps of the carnivorous sundew species or pollinator preferences for colours of flowers enable these plants to spare pollinators. In addition, we collected odours from flowers and traps of each carnivorous species in order to identify volatile chemicals that are attractive or repellent to pollinators and prey insects. In Drosera spatulata and D. arcturi, no volatiles were detected from either their flowers or traps that could serve as kairomone attractants for insects. However, behavioural experiments indicated white colour and spatial separation between flowers and traps aid in reducing pollinator entrapment while capturing prey. In contrast, D. auriculata have flowers that are adjacent to their traps. In this species we identified chemical signals emanating from flowers that comprised an eight-component blend, while the plant's traps emitted a unique four-component blend. The floral odour attracted both pollinator and prey insects, while trap odour only attracted prey. This is the first scientific report to demonstrate that carnivorous plants utilize visual, spatial, and chemical signals to spare flower visitors while trapping prey insects. PMID:26888545

  19. Fluorescence Labelling of Phosphatase Activity in Digestive Glands of Carnivorous Plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Plachno, B.J.; Adamec, Lubomír; Lichtscheidl, I.K.; Peroutka, M.; Adlassnig, W.; Vrba, Jaroslav

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 8, - (2006), s. 813-820. ISSN 1435-8603 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KSK6005114 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516; CEZ:AV0Z60170517 Keywords : carnivorous plants * digestion * digestive glands Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.059, year: 2006

  20. Ecophysiological characterization of carnivorous plant roots: oxygen fluxes, respiration, and water exudation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 49, č. 2 (2005), s. 247-255. ISSN 0006-3134 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA6005909 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : terrestrial carnivorous plants * soil anoxia * Genlisea traps Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.792, year: 2005

  1. Ecophysiological traits of terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous plants: are the costs and benefits the same?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ellison, A. M.; Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 120, č. 11 (2011), 1721-1731. ISSN 0030-1299 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous plants * photosynthesis * mineral nutrition Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.061, year: 2011

  2. Optimization of medium for growing the aquatic carnivorous plant Aldrovanda vesiculosa in vitro

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír; Kondo, K.

    Tokyo: Hiroshima University, 2002 - (Kondo, K.), s. 147-151 [The International Carnivorous Plant Conference. Tokyo (JP), 21.01.2002-23.01.2002] R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KSK6005114 Grant ostatní: JSPS Invitation Fellowship(JP) S-00141 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : Aldrovanda vesiculosa Subject RIV: EF - Botanics

  3. A carnivorous sundew plant prefers protein over chitin as a source of nitrogen from its traps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlovič, Andrej; Krausko, Miroslav; Adamec, Lubomír

    2016-07-01

    Carnivorous plants have evolved in nutrient-poor wetland habitats. They capture arthropod prey, which is an additional source of plant growth limiting nutrients. One of them is nitrogen, which occurs in the form of chitin and proteins in prey carcasses. In this study, the nutritional value of chitin and protein and their digestion traits in the carnivorous sundew Drosera capensis L. were estimated using stable nitrogen isotope abundance. Plants fed on chitin derived 49% of the leaf nitrogen from chitin, while those fed on the protein bovine serum albumin (BSA) derived 70% of its leaf nitrogen from this. Moreover, leaf nitrogen content doubled in protein-fed in comparison to chitin-fed plants indicating that the proteins were digested more effectively in comparison to chitin and resulted in significantly higher chlorophyll contents. The surplus chlorophyll and absorbed nitrogen from the protein digestion were incorporated into photosynthetic proteins - the light harvesting antennae of photosystem II. The incorporation of insect nitrogen into the plant photosynthetic apparatus may explain the increased rate of photosynthesis and plant growth after feeding. This general response in many genera of carnivorous plants has been reported in many previous studies. PMID:26998942

  4. Phytochemical studies and biological activity of carnivorous plants from the Mediterranean region

    OpenAIRE

    Grevenstuk, Tomás

    2010-01-01

    Dissertação de mest., Ciências Biotecnológicas (Biotecnologia Vegetal), Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade do Algarve, 2010 In this thesis several studies were conducted with four carnivorous plant species which occur on Portuguese territory: Pinguicula lusitanica, Pinguicula vulgaris, Drosera intermedia and Drosera rotundifolia. Most habitats of these plants are threatened and natural populations are scarce, therefore micropropagation protocols were developed to ...

  5. Jasmonates trigger prey-induced formation of ‘outer stomach’ in carnivorous sundew plants

    OpenAIRE

    Nakamura, Yoko; Reichelt, Michael; Mayer, Veronika E.; Mithöfer, Axel

    2013-01-01

    It has been widely accepted that the growth-related phytohormone auxin is the endogenous signal that initiates bending movements of plant organs. In 1875, Charles Darwin described how the bending movement of leaves in carnivorous sundew species formed an ‘outer stomach’ that allowed the plants to enclose and digest captured insect prey. About 100 years later, auxin was suggested to be the factor responsible for this movement. We report that prey capture induces both leaf bending and the accum...

  6. Microrheometry of sub-nanolitre biopolymer samples: non-Newtonian flow phenomena of carnivorous plant mucilage

    OpenAIRE

    Erni, Philipp; Varagnat, Matthieu; Clasen, Christian; Crest, Jérôme; McKinley, Gareth H.

    2011-01-01

    Sundew plants (Drosera) capture insects using tiny drops of a viscoelastic fluid. These mucilage droplets are typically tens of micrometres in diameter, corresponding to fluid volumes in, or below, the nanolitre range. In contrast to other carnivorous plants, the physical principles and the role of rheology in the capturing mechanism are not yet fully understood. The rather simple chemical composition reported for the capturing fluid (a high molecular weight acidic polysaccharide composed of ...

  7. Genome-wide analysis of adaptive molecular evolution in the carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba

    OpenAIRE

    CARRETERO PAULET, LORENZO; Chang, T-H; Librado Sanz, Pablo; Ibarra Laclette, E.; Herrera Estrella, L.; Rozas Liras, Julio A.; Albert, V.A.

    2015-01-01

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compa...

  8. Genome-Wide Analysis of Adaptive Molecular Evolution in the Carnivorous Plant Utricularia gibba

    OpenAIRE

    Carretero-Paulet, Lorenzo; Chang, Tien-Hao; Librado, Pablo; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Rozas, Julio; Albert, Victor A.

    2015-01-01

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compa...

  9. Ecophysiological Traits of Terrestrial and Aquatic Carnivorous Plants: Are the Costs and Benefits the Same?

    OpenAIRE

    Adamec, Lubomír; Ellison, Aaron M.

    2011-01-01

    Identification of trade-offs among physiological and morphological traits and their use in cost-benefit models and ecological or evolutionary optimization arguments have been hallmarks of ecological analysis for at least 50 years. Carnivorous plants are model systems for studying a wide range of ecophysiological and ecological processes and the application of a cost-benefit model for the evolution of carnivory by plants has provided many novel insights into trait-based cost-benefit models. Ce...

  10. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Millett, J., E-mail: j.millett@lboro.ac.uk [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Foot, G.W. [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Svensson, B.M. [Department of Plant Ecology and Evolution, Uppsala University, Norbyvägen 18 D, SE-752 36 Uppsala (Sweden)

    2015-04-15

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  11. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  12. MORPHO-STRUCTURAL ADAPTATIONS OF SOME AQUATIC CARNIVOROUS PLANT SPECIES (ALDROVANDA VESICULOSA L. AND UTRICULARIA VULGARIS L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    STANESCU IRINA

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available In the present work the authors emphasize a few structure particularities of two aquatic carnivorous plant species, Aldrovanda vesiculosa L. and Utricularia vulgaris L., underlining their adaptation to the aquatic medium and to the carnivory menu.

  13. Attract them anyway: benefits of large, showy flowers in a highly autogamous, carnivorous plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salces-Castellano, A; Paniw, M; Casimiro-Soriguer, R; Ojeda, F

    2016-01-01

    Reproductive biology of carnivorous plants has largely been studied on species that rely on insects as pollinators and prey, creating potential conflicts. Autogamous pollination, although present in some carnivorous species, has received less attention. In angiosperms, autogamous self-fertilization is expected to lead to a reduction in flower size, thereby reducing resource allocation to structures that attract pollinators. A notable exception is the carnivorous pyrophyteDrosophyllum lusitanicum(Drosophyllaceae), which has been described as an autogamous selfing species but produces large, yellow flowers. Using a flower removal and a pollination experiment, we assessed, respectively, whether large flowers in this species may serve as an attracting device to prey insects or whether previously reported high selfing rates for this species in peripheral populations may be lower in more central, less isolated populations. We found no differences between flower-removed plants and intact, flowering plants in numbers of prey insects trapped. We also found no indication of reduced potential for autogamous reproduction, in terms of either seed set or seed size. However, our results showed significant increases in seed set of bagged, hand-pollinated flowers and unbagged flowers exposed to insect visitation compared with bagged, non-manipulated flowers that could only self-pollinate autonomously. Considering that the key life-history strategy of this pyrophytic species is to maintain a viable seed bank, any increase in seed set through insect pollinator activity would increase plant fitness. This in turn would explain the maintenance of large, conspicuous flowers in a highly autogamous, carnivorous plant. PMID:26977052

  14. Attract them anyway: benefits of large, showy flowers in a highly autogamous, carnivorous plant species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salces-Castellano, A.; Paniw, M.; Casimiro-Soriguer, R.; Ojeda, F.

    2016-01-01

    Reproductive biology of carnivorous plants has largely been studied on species that rely on insects as pollinators and prey, creating potential conflicts. Autogamous pollination, although present in some carnivorous species, has received less attention. In angiosperms, autogamous self-fertilization is expected to lead to a reduction in flower size, thereby reducing resource allocation to structures that attract pollinators. A notable exception is the carnivorous pyrophyte Drosophyllum lusitanicum (Drosophyllaceae), which has been described as an autogamous selfing species but produces large, yellow flowers. Using a flower removal and a pollination experiment, we assessed, respectively, whether large flowers in this species may serve as an attracting device to prey insects or whether previously reported high selfing rates for this species in peripheral populations may be lower in more central, less isolated populations. We found no differences between flower-removed plants and intact, flowering plants in numbers of prey insects trapped. We also found no indication of reduced potential for autogamous reproduction, in terms of either seed set or seed size. However, our results showed significant increases in seed set of bagged, hand-pollinated flowers and unbagged flowers exposed to insect visitation compared with bagged, non-manipulated flowers that could only self-pollinate autonomously. Considering that the key life-history strategy of this pyrophytic species is to maintain a viable seed bank, any increase in seed set through insect pollinator activity would increase plant fitness. This in turn would explain the maintenance of large, conspicuous flowers in a highly autogamous, carnivorous plant. PMID:26977052

  15. By which mechanism does prey capture enhance plant growth in aquatic carnivorous plants: Stimulation of shoot apex?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 178, č. 2 (2011), s. 171-176. ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * dark respiration * tissue N and P content Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.145, year: 2011

  16. Red trap colour of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function

    OpenAIRE

    Foot, G.; RICE S.p.; Millett, J.

    2014-01-01

    The traps of many carnivorous plants are red in colour. This has been widely hypothesized to serve a prey attraction function; colour has also been hypothesized to function as camouflage, preventing prey avoidance. We tested these two hypotheses in situ for the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia. We conducted three separate studies: (i) prey attraction to artificial traps to isolate the influence of colour; (ii) prey attraction to artificial traps on artificial backgrounds to control the ...

  17. Where Is My Food? Brazilian Flower Fly Steals Prey from Carnivorous Sundews in a Newly Discovered Plant-Animal Interaction

    OpenAIRE

    Andreas Fleischmann; Fernando Rivadavia; Paulo M Gonella; Celeste Pérez-Bañón; Ximo Mengual; Santos Rojo

    2016-01-01

    A new interaction between insects and carnivorous plants is reported from Brazil. Larvae of the predatory flower fly Toxomerus basalis (Diptera: Syrphidae: Syrphinae) have been found scavenging on the sticky leaves of several carnivorous sundew species (Drosera, Droseraceae) in Minas Gerais and São Paulo states, SE Brazil. This syrphid apparently spends its whole larval stage feeding on prey trapped by Drosera leaves. The nature of this plant-animal relationship is discussed, as well as the D...

  18. Spatio-temporal changes of photosynthesis in carnivorous plants in response to prey capture, retention and digestion

    OpenAIRE

    Pavlovič, Andrej

    2010-01-01

    Carnivorous plants have evolved modified leaves into the traps that assist in nutrient uptake from captured prey. It is known that the traps of carnivorous plants usually have lower photosynthetic rates than assimilation leaves as a result of adaptation to carnivory. However, a few recent studies have indicated that photosynthesis and respiration undergo spatio-temporal changes during prey capture and retention, especially in the genera with active trapping mechanisms. This study describes th...

  19. Dinitrogen fixation associated with shoots of aquatic carnivorous plants: is it ecologically important?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sirová, D.; Šantrůček, Jiří; Adamec, Lubomír; Bárta, J.; Borovec, Jakub; Pech, J.; Owens, S.M.; Šantrůčková, H.; Schaeufele, R.; Štorchová, Helena; Vrba, Jaroslav

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 114, č. 1 (2014), s. 125-133. ISSN 0305-7364 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:67985939 ; RVO:61389030 Keywords : Aldrovanda vesiculosa * aquatic carnivorous plants * Utricularia vulgaris * nitrogen fixation Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry; EF - Botanics (BU-J); EF - Botanics (UEB-Q) Impact factor: 3.654, year: 2014

  20. Single primer amplification reaction (SPAR) methods reveal subsequent increase in genetic variations in micropropagated plants of Nepenthes khasiana Hook. f. maintained for three consecutive regenerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devi, Soibam Purnima; Kumaria, Suman; Rao, Satyawada Rama; Tandon, Pramod

    2014-03-15

    The genetic fidelity of in vitro-raised plants of three successive regenerations of Nepenthes khasiana Hook. f. was assessed using three different single primer amplification reaction (SPAR) methods, viz., random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) and direct amplification of minisatellite DNA region (DAMD) markers. Out of 80 RAPD primers screened, 14 primers reflected a genetic variation of 4.1% in the first regeneration which was increased to 9.4% in the third regeneration. In the case of ISSR, out of 36 primers screened for assessment of genetic homogeneity of the regenerated plantlets, 12 primers showed an increase of genetic variation from 4.3% to 10% from the first to the third regenerations. In DAMD profiling, 15 primers were used for the evaluation of genetic fidelity where 8.47% of polymorphism was observed in the first regeneration which was increased to 13.33% in the third regeneration. The cumulative analysis reflected a genetic variation of 5.65% in the first regeneration which increased subsequently to 7.77% in the second regeneration and 10.87% in the third regeneration. The present study demonstrates SPAR technique to be an efficient tool for the assessment of clonal fidelity of in vitro-raised plants. PMID:24440289

  1. Tuning of color contrast signals to visual sensitivity maxima of tree shrews by three Bornean highland Nepenthes species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Jonathan A; Clarke, Charles; Greenwood, Melinda; Chin, Lijin

    2012-10-01

    Three species of Nepenthes pitcher plants (Nepenthes rajah, Nepenthes lowii and Nepenthes macrophylla) specialize in harvesting nutrients from tree shrew excreta in their pitchers. In all three species, nectaries on the underside of the pitcher lid are the focus of the tree shrews' attention. Tree shrews are dichromats, with visual sensitivity in the blue and green wavebands. All three Nepenthes species were shown to produce visual signals, in which the underside of the pitcher lid (the area of highest nectar production) stood out in high contrast to the adjacent area on the pitcher (i.e., was brighter), in the blue and green wavebands visible to the tree shrews. N. rajah showed the tightest degree of "tuning," notably in the green waveband. Conversely, pitchers of Nepenthes burbidgeae, a typical insectivorous species sympatric with N. rajah, did not produce a color pattern tuned to tree shrew sensitivity maxima. PMID:22902686

  2. A novel resource-service mutualism between bats and pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grafe, T Ulmar; Schöner, Caroline R; Kerth, Gerald; Junaidi, Anissa; Schöner, Michael G

    2011-06-23

    Mutualistic relationships between vertebrates and plants apart from the pollen and seed-dispersal syndromes are rare. At first view, carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes seem to be highly unlikely candidates for mutualistic interactions with animals, as they form dimorphic terrestrial and aerial pitchers that trap arthropods and small vertebrates. Surprisingly, however, the aerial pitchers of Nepenthes rafflesiana variety elongata are poor insect traps, with low amounts of insect-attractive volatile compounds and low amounts of digestive fluid. Here, we show that N. rafflesiana elongata gains an estimated 33.8 per cent of the total foliar nitrogen from the faeces of Hardwicke's woolly bats (Kerivoula hardwickii hardwickii) that exclusively roost in its aerial pitchers. This is the first case in which the faeces-trapping syndrome has been documented in a pitcher plant that attracts bats and only the second case of a mutualistic association between a carnivorous plant and a mammal to date. PMID:21270023

  3. Little Shop of Horrors: Rheology of the Mucilage of Drosera sp., a Carnivorous Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erni, Philipp; Varagnat, Matthieu; McKinley, Gareth H.

    2008-07-01

    Drosera sp. (`sundew') are carnivorous plants; they capture insects using tiny drops of mucilage secreted by stalked glands on their leaf laminae. Prey gets trapped by the sticky viscoelastic liquid, initiating a metabolic cascade on the leaf that eventually results in the insect being digested by the plant. The mucilage droplets typically are in the size range of tens of micrometers; at these extremely small sample sizes, complex fluids are usually not amenable to traditional rheometry. We discuss how microrheometric techniques, in particular capillary breakup extensional rheometry ("μ-caber"), can be used to test the nonlinear rheological properties of nanoliter volumes of such small-volume biopolymer samples.

  4. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millett, J; Foot, G W; Svensson, B M

    2015-04-15

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant-prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. PMID:25655989

  5. Jasmonates trigger prey-induced formation of 'outer stomach' in carnivorous sundew plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Yoko; Reichelt, Michael; Mayer, Veronika E; Mithöfer, Axel

    2013-05-22

    It has been widely accepted that the growth-related phytohormone auxin is the endogenous signal that initiates bending movements of plant organs. In 1875, Charles Darwin described how the bending movement of leaves in carnivorous sundew species formed an 'outer stomach' that allowed the plants to enclose and digest captured insect prey. About 100 years later, auxin was suggested to be the factor responsible for this movement. We report that prey capture induces both leaf bending and the accumulation of defence-related jasmonate phytohormones. In Drosera capensis fed with fruitflies, within 3 h after prey capture and simultaneous with leaf movement, we detected an increase in jasmonic acid and its isoleucine conjugate. This accumulation was spatially restricted to the bending segment of the leaves. The application of jasmonates alone was sufficient to trigger leaf bending. Only living fruitflies or the body fluids of crushed fruitflies induced leaf curvature; neither dead flies nor mechanical treatment had any effect. Our findings strongly suggest that the formation of the 'outer stomach' in Drosera is a chemonastic movement that is triggered by accumulation of endogenous jasmonates. These results suggest that in carnivorous sundew plants the jasmonate cascade might have been adapted to facilitate carnivory rather than to defend against herbivores. PMID:23516244

  6. Functional analyses of carnivorous plant-specific amino acid residues in S-like ribonucleases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arai, Naoki; Nishimura, Emi; Kikuchi, Yo; Ohyama, Takashi

    2015-09-11

    Unlike plants with no carnivory, carnivorous plants seem to use S-like ribonucleases (RNases) as an enzyme for carnivory. Carnivorous plant-specific conserved amino acid residues are present at four positions around the conserved active site (CAS). The roles of these conserved amino acid residues in the enzymatic function were explored in the current study by preparing five recombinant variants of DA-I, the S-like RNase of Drosera adelae. The kcat and kcat/Km values of the enzymes revealed that among the four variants with a single mutation, the serine to glycine mutation at position 111 most negatively influenced the enzymatic activity. The change in the bulkiness of the amino acid residue side-chain seemed to be the major cause of the above effect. Modeling of the three dimensional (3D) structures strongly suggested that the S to G mutation at 111 greatly altered the overall enzyme conformation. The conserved four amino acid residues are likely to function in keeping the two histidine residues, which are essential for the cleavage of RNA strands, and the CAS in the most functional enzymatic conformation. PMID:26235877

  7. Ants provide nutritional and defensive benefits to the carnivorous plant Sarracenia minor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Daniel C; Rossi, Anthony M; Depaz, Jacqueline; McKelvey, Lindsey; Elias, Sheryl; Wheeler, Emily; Moon, Jamie

    2010-09-01

    Ants can have important, but sometimes unexpected, effects on the plants they associate with. For carnivorous plants, associating with ants may provide defensive benefits in addition to nutritional ones. We examined the effects of increased ant visitation and exclusion of insect prey from pitchers of the hooded pitcher plant Sarracenia minor, which has been hypothesized to be an ant specialist. Visitation by ants was increased by placing PVC pipes in the ground immediately adjacent to 16 of 32 pitcher plants, which created nesting/refuge sites. Insects were excluded from all pitchers of 16 of the plants by occluding the pitchers with cotton. Treatments were applied in a 2 x 2 factorial design in order to isolate the hypothesized defensive benefits from nutritional ones. We recorded visitation by ants, the mean number of ants captured, foliar nitrogen content, plant growth and size, and levels of herbivory by the pitcher plant mining moth Exyra semicrocea. Changes in ant visitation and prey capture significantly affected nitrogen content, plant height, and the number of pitchers per plant. Increased ant visitation independent of prey capture reduced herbivory and pitcher mortality, and increased the number of pitchers per plant. Results from this study show that the hooded pitcher plant derives a double benefit from attracting potential prey that are also capable of providing defense against herbivory. PMID:20532567

  8. Distribution of naphthoquinones, plumbagin, droserone, and 5-O-methyl droserone in chitin-induced and uninduced Nepenthes khasiana: molecular events in prey capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raj, Gopan; Kurup, Rajani; Hussain, Abdul Azeez; Baby, Sabulal

    2011-11-01

    Prey capture and digestion in Nepenthes spp. through their leaf-evolved biological traps involve a sequence of exciting events. Sugar-rich nectar, aroma chemicals, narcotic alkaloid secretions, slippery wax crystals, and other biochemicals take part in attracting, capturing, and digesting preys in Nepenthes pitchers. Here we report the distribution of three potent naphthoquinones in Nepenthes khasiana and their roles in prey capture. Plumbagin was first detected in N. khasiana, and its content (root: 1.33 ± 0.02%, dry wt.) was the highest found in any natural source. Chitin induction enhanced plumbagin levels in N. khasiana (root: 2.17 ± 0.02%, dry wt.). Potted N. khasiana plants with limited growth of roots and aerial parts, showed higher levels of plumbagin accumulation (root: 1.92 ± 0.02%; root, chitin induction: 3.30 ± 0.21%, dry wt.) compared with field plants. Plumbagin, a known toxin, insect ecdysis inhibitor, and antimicrobial, was also found embedded in the waxy layers at the top prey capture region of N. khasiana pitchers. Chitin induction, mimicking prey capture, produced droserone and 5-O-methyl droserone in N. khasiana pitcher fluid. Both these naphthoquinone derivatives provide antimicrobial protection to the pitcher fluid from visiting preys. A two-way barrier was found between plumbagin and its two derivatives. Plumbagin was never detected in the pitcher fluid whereas both its derivatives were only found in the pitcher fluid on chitin induction or prey capture. The three naphthoquinones, plumbagin, droserone, and 5-O-methyl droserone, act as molecular triggers in prey capture and digestion in the carnivorous plant, N. khasiana. PMID:21862483

  9. Plant carnivory in the Caryophyllales: phylogenetic relationships, morphological adaptations, and molecular evolution of digestive enzymes among carnivorous genera

    OpenAIRE

    Renner, Tanya

    2011-01-01

    Phylogenetic relationships among carnivorous plants of the angiosperm order Caryophyllales are explored using Bayesian statistics and maximum-likelihood based searches of phylogeny. Nuclear ribosomal (ITS) and chloroplast intergenic spacer (PY-IGS) regions, along with previously- sequenced DNA are utilized for phylogenetic reconstructions. Taxonomic relationships across genera are refined and three strongly supported clades are identified: monophyletic Droseraceae, Nepenthaceae, and a third c...

  10. Transcriptomics and molecular evolutionary rate analysis of the bladderwort (Utricularia), a carnivorous plant with a minimal genome

    OpenAIRE

    Herrera-Estrella Alfredo; Ortega-Estrada María de J; Zamudio-Hernández Flor; Albert Victor A; Pérez-Torres Claudia A; Ibarra-Laclette Enrique; Herrera-Estrella Luis

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background The carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba (bladderwort) is remarkable in having a minute genome, which at ca. 80 megabases is approximately half that of Arabidopsis. Bladderworts show an incredible diversity of forms surrounding a defined theme: tiny, bladder-like suction traps on terrestrial, epiphytic, or aquatic plants with a diversity of unusual vegetative forms. Utricularia plants, which are rootless, are also anomalous in physiological features (respiration and carbon ...

  11. Congestion Control in the Internet by Employing a Ratio dependent Plant Herbivore Carnivorous Model

    CERN Document Server

    Jamali, Shahram

    2009-01-01

    The demand for Internet based services has exploded over the last decade. Many organizations use the Internet and particularly the World Wide Web as their primary medium for communication and business. This phenomenal growth has dramatically increased the performance requirements for the Internet. To have a high performance Internet, a good congestion control system is essential for it. The current work proposes that the congestion control in the Internet can be inspired from the population control tactics of the nature. Toward this idea, each flow (W) in the network is viewed as a species whose population size is congestion window size of the flow. By this assumption, congestion control problem is redefined as population control of flow species. This paper defines a three trophic food chain analogy in congestion control area, and gives a ratio dependent model to control population size of W species within this plant herbivore carnivorous food chain. Simulation results show that this model achieves fair bandw...

  12. The Metagenome of Utricularia gibba's Traps: Into the Microbial Input to a Carnivorous Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcaraz, Luis David; Martínez-Sánchez, Shamayim; Torres, Ignacio; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2016-01-01

    The genome and transcriptome sequences of the aquatic, rootless, and carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba L. (Lentibulariaceae), were recently determined. Traps are necessary for U. gibba because they help the plant to survive in nutrient-deprived environments. The U. gibba's traps (Ugt) are specialized structures that have been proposed to selectively filter microbial inhabitants. To determine whether the traps indeed have a microbiome that differs, in composition or abundance, from the microbiome in the surrounding environment, we used whole-genome shotgun (WGS) metagenomics to describe both the taxonomic and functional diversity of the Ugt microbiome. We collected U. gibba plants from their natural habitat and directly sequenced the metagenome of the Ugt microbiome and its surrounding water. The total predicted number of species in the Ugt was more than 1,100. Using pan-genome fragment recruitment analysis, we were able to identify to the species level of some key Ugt players, such as Pseudomonas monteilii. Functional analysis of the Ugt metagenome suggests that the trap microbiome plays an important role in nutrient scavenging and assimilation while complementing the hydrolytic functions of the plant. PMID:26859489

  13. Continuous directional water transport on the peristome surface of Nepenthes alata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Huawei; Zhang, Pengfei; Zhang, Liwen; Liu, Hongliang; Jiang, Ying; Zhang, Deyuan; Han, Zhiwu; Jiang, Lei

    2016-04-01

    Numerous natural systems contain surfaces or threads that enable directional water transport. This behaviour is usually ascribed to hierarchical structural features at the microscale and nanoscale, with gradients in surface energy and gradients in Laplace pressure thought to be the main driving forces. Here we study the prey-trapping pitcher organs of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata. We find that continuous, directional water transport occurs on the surface of the ‘peristome’—the rim of the pitcher—because of its multiscale structure, which optimizes and enhances capillary rise in the transport direction, and prevents backflow by pinning in place any water front that is moving in the reverse direction. This results not only in unidirectional flow despite the absence of any surface-energy gradient, but also in a transport speed that is much higher than previously thought. We anticipate that the basic ‘design’ principles underlying this behaviour could be used to develop artificial fluid-transport systems with practical applications.

  14. Red trap colour of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foot, G; Rice, S P; Millett, J

    2014-01-01

    The traps of many carnivorous plants are red in colour. This has been widely hypothesized to serve a prey attraction function; colour has also been hypothesized to function as camouflage, preventing prey avoidance. We tested these two hypotheses in situ for the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia. We conducted three separate studies: (i) prey attraction to artificial traps to isolate the influence of colour; (ii) prey attraction to artificial traps on artificial backgrounds to control the degree of contrast and (iii) observation of prey capture by D. rotundifolia to determine the effects of colour on prey capture. Prey were not attracted to green traps and were deterred from red traps. There was no evidence that camouflaged traps caught more prey. For D. rotundifolia, there was a relationship between trap colour and prey capture. However, trap colour may be confounded with other leaf traits. Thus, we conclude that for D. rotundifolia, red trap colour does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function. PMID:24740904

  15. Genome-wide analysis of adaptive molecular evolution in the carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carretero-Paulet, Lorenzo; Chang, Tien-Hao; Librado, Pablo; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Rozas, Julio; Albert, Victor A

    2015-02-01

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compared the U. gibba genome with that of four other eudicot species, defining a total of 17,324 gene families (orthogroups). These families were further classified as either 1) lineage-specific expanded/contracted or 2) stable in size. The U. gibba-expanded families are generically related to three main phenotypic features: 1) trap physiology, 2) key plant morphogenetic/developmental pathways, and 3) response to environmental stimuli, including adaptations to life in aquatic environments. Further scans for signatures of protein functional specialization permitted identification of seven candidate genes with amino acid changes putatively fixed by positive Darwinian selection in the U. gibba lineage. The Arabidopsis orthologs of these genes (AXR, UMAMIT41, IGS, TAR2, SOL1, DEG9, and DEG10) are involved in diverse plant biological functions potentially relevant for U. gibba phenotypic diversification, including 1) auxin metabolism and signal transduction, 2) flowering induction and floral meristem transition, 3) root development, and 4) peptidases. Taken together, our results suggest numerous candidate genes and gene families as interesting targets for further experimental confirmation of their functional and adaptive roles in the U. gibba's unique lifestyle and highly specialized body plan. PMID:25577200

  16. Indole-3-Acetic Acid-Producing Yeasts in the Phyllosphere of the Carnivorous Plant Drosera indica L

    OpenAIRE

    Sun, Pei-Feng; Fang, Wei-Ta; Shin, Li-Ying; Wei, Jyuan-Yu; Fu, Shih-Feng; Chou, Jui-Yu

    2014-01-01

    Yeasts are widely distributed in nature and exist in association with other microorganisms as normal inhabitants of soil, vegetation, and aqueous environments. In this study, 12 yeast strains were enriched and isolated from leaf samples of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L., which is currently threatened because of restricted habitats and use in herbal industries. According to similarities in large subunit and small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequences, we identified 2 yeast species in 2...

  17. Where Is My Food? Brazilian Flower Fly Steals Prey from Carnivorous Sundews in a Newly Discovered Plant-Animal Interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivadavia, Fernando; Gonella, Paulo M.; Pérez-Bañón, Celeste; Mengual, Ximo; Rojo, Santos

    2016-01-01

    A new interaction between insects and carnivorous plants is reported from Brazil. Larvae of the predatory flower fly Toxomerus basalis (Diptera: Syrphidae: Syrphinae) have been found scavenging on the sticky leaves of several carnivorous sundew species (Drosera, Droseraceae) in Minas Gerais and São Paulo states, SE Brazil. This syrphid apparently spends its whole larval stage feeding on prey trapped by Drosera leaves. The nature of this plant-animal relationship is discussed, as well as the Drosera species involved, and locations where T. basalis was observed. 180 years after the discovery of this flower fly species, its biology now has been revealed. This is (1) the first record of kleptoparasitism in the Syrphidae, (2) a new larval feeding mode for this family, and (3) the first report of a dipteran that shows a kleptoparasitic relationship with a carnivorous plant with adhesive flypaper traps. The first descriptions of the third instar larva and puparium of T. basalis based on Scanning Electron Microscope analysis are provided. PMID:27144980

  18. Where Is My Food? Brazilian Flower Fly Steals Prey from Carnivorous Sundews in a Newly Discovered Plant-Animal Interaction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Fleischmann

    Full Text Available A new interaction between insects and carnivorous plants is reported from Brazil. Larvae of the predatory flower fly Toxomerus basalis (Diptera: Syrphidae: Syrphinae have been found scavenging on the sticky leaves of several carnivorous sundew species (Drosera, Droseraceae in Minas Gerais and São Paulo states, SE Brazil. This syrphid apparently spends its whole larval stage feeding on prey trapped by Drosera leaves. The nature of this plant-animal relationship is discussed, as well as the Drosera species involved, and locations where T. basalis was observed. 180 years after the discovery of this flower fly species, its biology now has been revealed. This is (1 the first record of kleptoparasitism in the Syrphidae, (2 a new larval feeding mode for this family, and (3 the first report of a dipteran that shows a kleptoparasitic relationship with a carnivorous plant with adhesive flypaper traps. The first descriptions of the third instar larva and puparium of T. basalis based on Scanning Electron Microscope analysis are provided.

  19. Where Is My Food? Brazilian Flower Fly Steals Prey from Carnivorous Sundews in a Newly Discovered Plant-Animal Interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleischmann, Andreas; Rivadavia, Fernando; Gonella, Paulo M; Pérez-Bañón, Celeste; Mengual, Ximo; Rojo, Santos

    2016-01-01

    A new interaction between insects and carnivorous plants is reported from Brazil. Larvae of the predatory flower fly Toxomerus basalis (Diptera: Syrphidae: Syrphinae) have been found scavenging on the sticky leaves of several carnivorous sundew species (Drosera, Droseraceae) in Minas Gerais and São Paulo states, SE Brazil. This syrphid apparently spends its whole larval stage feeding on prey trapped by Drosera leaves. The nature of this plant-animal relationship is discussed, as well as the Drosera species involved, and locations where T. basalis was observed. 180 years after the discovery of this flower fly species, its biology now has been revealed. This is (1) the first record of kleptoparasitism in the Syrphidae, (2) a new larval feeding mode for this family, and (3) the first report of a dipteran that shows a kleptoparasitic relationship with a carnivorous plant with adhesive flypaper traps. The first descriptions of the third instar larva and puparium of T. basalis based on Scanning Electron Microscope analysis are provided. PMID:27144980

  20. Propagation of Threatened Nepenthes khasiana: Methods and Precautions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jibankumar S. KHURAIJAM

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Ex-situ conservation is an important key in the management of rare, endangered and threatened (RET plant species and its effectiveness depends on several factors. Maintenance of viable germplasm and its subsequent propagation plays an important role in long term conservation of many RET species. Nepenthes khasiana is a rare and gravely threatened species in the wild due to over-collection and other threats. The species needs urgent in-situ and ex-situ conservation. Development of easy to propagate techniques would pave faster multiplication for its use of educational, medicinal and horticultural purpose. In the present paper, successful propagation technique of Nepenthes khasiana through seeds is demonstrated along with detailed information on precautions to be taken during the adoption of the techniques.

  1. Deep phylogeographic structure and environmental differentiation in the carnivorous plant Sarracenia alata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zellmer, Amanda J; Hanes, Margaret M; Hird, Sarah M; Carstens, Bryan C

    2012-10-01

    We collected ~29 kb of sequence data using Roche 454 pyrosequencing in order to estimate the timing and pattern of diversification in the carnivorous pitcher plant Sarracenia alata. Utilizing modified protocols for reduced representation library construction, we generated sequence data from 86 individuals across 10 populations from throughout the range of the species. We identified 76 high-quality and high-coverage loci (containing over 500 SNPs) using the bioinformatics pipeline PRGmatic. Results from a Bayesian clustering analysis indicate that populations are highly structured, and are similar in pattern to the topology of a population tree estimated using *BEAST. The pattern of diversification within Sarracenia alata implies that riverine barriers are the primary factor promoting population diversification, with divergence across the Mississippi River occurring more than 60,000 generations before present. Further, significant patterns of niche divergence and the identification of several outlier loci suggest that selection may contribute to population divergence. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of using next-generation sequencing to investigate intraspecific genetic variation in nonmodel species. PMID:22556200

  2. Adaptive evolution of cytochrome c oxidase: Infrastructure for a carnivorous plant radiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jobson, Richard W.; Nielsen, Rasmus; Laakkonen, Liisa; Wikström, Mårten; Albert, Victor A.

    2004-01-01

    Much recent attention in the study of adaptation of organismal form has centered on developmental regulation. As such, the highly conserved respiratory machinery of eukaryotic cells might seem an unlikely target for selection supporting novel morphologies. We demonstrate that a dramatic molecular evolutionary rate increase in subunit I of cytochrome c oxidase (COX) from an active-trapping lineage of carnivorous plants is caused by positive Darwinian selection. Bladderworts (Utricularia) trap plankton when water-immersed, negatively pressured suction bladders are triggered. The resetting of traps involves active ion transport, requiring considerable energy expenditure. As judged from the quaternary structure of bovine COX, the most profound adaptive substitutions are two contiguous cysteines absent in ≈99.9% of databased COX I sequences from Eukaryota, Archaea, and Bacteria. This motif lies directly at the docking point of COX I helix 3 and cytochrome c, and modeling of bovine COX I suggests the possibility of an unprecedented helix-terminating disulfide bridge that could alter COX/cytochrome c dissociation kinetics. Thus, the key adaptation in Utricularia likely lies in molecular energetic changes that buttressed the mechanisms responsible for the bladderworts' radical morphological evolution. Along with evidence for COX evolution underlying expansion of the anthropoid neocortex, our findings underscore that important morphological and physiological innovations must often be accompanied by specific adaptations in proteins with basic cellular functions. PMID:15596720

  3. Tree shrew lavatories: a novel nitrogen sequestration strategy in a tropical pitcher plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Charles M; Bauer, Ulrike; Lee, Ch'ien C; Tuen, Andrew A; Rembold, Katja; Moran, Jonathan A

    2009-10-23

    Nepenthes pitcher plants are typically carnivorous, producing pitchers with varying combinations of epicuticular wax crystals, viscoelastic fluids and slippery peristomes to trap arthropod prey, especially ants. However, ant densities are low in tropical montane habitats, thereby limiting the potential benefits of the carnivorous syndrome. Nepenthes lowii, a montane species from Borneo, produces two types of pitchers that differ greatly in form and function. Pitchers produced by immature plants conform to the 'typical' Nepenthes pattern, catching arthropod prey. However, pitchers produced by mature N. lowii plants lack the features associated with carnivory and are instead visited by tree shrews, which defaecate into them after feeding on exudates that accumulate on the pitcher lid. We tested the hypothesis that tree shrew faeces represent a significant nitrogen (N) source for N. lowii, finding that it accounts for between 57 and 100 per cent of foliar N in mature N. lowii plants. Thus, N. lowii employs a diversified N sequestration strategy, gaining access to a N source that is not available to sympatric congeners. The interaction between N. lowii and tree shrews appears to be a mutualism based on the exchange of food sources that are scarce in their montane habitat. PMID:19515656

  4. Molecular and functional evolution of class I chitinases for plant carnivory in the caryophyllales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renner, Tanya; Specht, Chelsea D

    2012-10-01

    Proteins produced by the large and diverse chitinase gene family are involved in the hydrolyzation of glycosidic bonds in chitin, a polymer of N-acetylglucosamines. In flowering plants, class I chitinases are important pathogenesis-related proteins, functioning in the determent of herbivory and pathogen attack by acting on insect exoskeletons and fungal cell walls. Within the carnivorous plants, two subclasses of class I chitinases have been identified to play a role in the digestion of prey. Members of these two subclasses, depending on the presence or absence of a C-terminal extension, can be secreted from specialized digestive glands found within the morphologically diverse traps that develop from carnivorous plant leaves. The degree of homology among carnivorous plant class I chitinases and the method by which these enzymes have been adapted for the carnivorous habit has yet to be elucidated. This study focuses on understanding the evolution of carnivory and chitinase genes in one of the major groups of plants that has evolved the carnivorous habit: the Caryophyllales. We recover novel class I chitinase homologs from species of genera Ancistrocladus, Dionaea, Drosera, Nepenthes, and Triphyophyllum, while also confirming the presence of two subclasses of class I chitinases based upon sequence homology and phylogenetic affinity to class I chitinases available from sequenced angiosperm genomes. We further detect residues under positive selection and reveal substitutions specific to carnivorous plant class I chitinases. These substitutions may confer functional differences as indicated by protein structure homology modeling. PMID:22490823

  5. A new species of Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae from Sumatra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pitra Akhriadi

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available AKHRIADI, PITRA, HERNAWATI & TAMIN, RUSJDI. 2004. A new species of Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae from Sumatra. Reinwardtia 12 (2: 141 – 144. ─ A New Species of Nepenthes rigidifolia is described.

  6. The effect of surface anisotropy in the slippery zone of Nepenthes alata pitchers on beetle attachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorb, Elena V; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2011-01-01

    The slippery zone in pitchers of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata bears scattered prominent lunate cells and displays continuous epicuticular crystalline wax coverage. The aim of this study was to examine the influence of the surface anisotropy, caused by the shape of lunate cells, on insect attachment ability. Traction tests with ladybird beetles Coccinella septempunctata were performed in two types of experiments, where surface samples of (1) intact pitchers, (2) chemically de-waxed pitchers, and (3) their polymer replicas were placed horizontally. Beetle traction forces were measured when they walked on test surfaces in either an upward (towards the peristome) or downward (towards the pitcher bottom) direction, corresponding to the upright or inverted positions of the pitcher. On intact pitcher surfaces covered with both lunate cells and wax crystals, experiments showed significantly higher forces in the direction towards the pitcher bottom. To distinguish between the contributions, from claw interlocking and pad adhesion, to insect attachment on the pitcher surfaces, intact versus claw-ablated beetles were used in the second type of experiment. On both de-waxed plant samples and their replicas, intact insects generated much higher forces in the downward direction compared to the upward one, whereas clawless insects did not. These results led to the conclusion that, (i) due to the particular shape of lunate cells, the pitcher surface has anisotropic properties in terms of insect attachment, and (ii) claws were mainly responsible for attachment enhancement in the downward pitcher direction, since, in this direction, they could interlock with overhanging edges of lunate cells. PMID:21977443

  7. The effect of surface anisotropy in the slippery zone of Nepenthes alata pitchers on beetle attachment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena V. Gorb

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available The slippery zone in pitchers of the carnivorous plant Nepenthes alata bears scattered prominent lunate cells and displays continuous epicuticular crystalline wax coverage. The aim of this study was to examine the influence of the surface anisotropy, caused by the shape of lunate cells, on insect attachment ability. Traction tests with ladybird beetles Coccinella septempunctata were performed in two types of experiments, where surface samples of (1 intact pitchers, (2 chemically de-waxed pitchers, and (3 their polymer replicas were placed horizontally. Beetle traction forces were measured when they walked on test surfaces in either an upward (towards the peristome or downward (towards the pitcher bottom direction, corresponding to the upright or inverted positions of the pitcher. On intact pitcher surfaces covered with both lunate cells and wax crystals, experiments showed significantly higher forces in the direction towards the pitcher bottom. To distinguish between the contributions, from claw interlocking and pad adhesion, to insect attachment on the pitcher surfaces, intact versus claw-ablated beetles were used in the second type of experiment. On both de-waxed plant samples and their replicas, intact insects generated much higher forces in the downward direction compared to the upward one, whereas clawless insects did not. These results led to the conclusion that, (i due to the particular shape of lunate cells, the pitcher surface has anisotropic properties in terms of insect attachment, and (ii claws were mainly responsible for attachment enhancement in the downward pitcher direction, since, in this direction, they could interlock with overhanging edges of lunate cells.

  8. Reliance on prey-derived nitrogen by the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia decreases with increasing nitrogen deposition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millett, J; Svensson, B M; Newton, J; Rydin, H

    2012-07-01

    • Carnivory in plants is presumed to be an adaptation to a low-nutrient environment. Nitrogen (N) from carnivory is expected to become a less important component of the N budget as root N availability increases. • Here, we investigated the uptake of N via roots versus prey of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing in ombrotrophic bogs along a latitudinal N deposition gradient through Sweden, using a natural abundance stable isotope mass balance technique. • Drosera rotundifolia plants receiving the lowest level of N deposition obtained a greater proportion of N from prey (57%) than did plants on bogs with higher N deposition (22% at intermediate and 33% at the highest deposition). When adjusted for differences in plant mass, this pattern was also present when considering total prey N uptake (66, 26 and 26 μg prey N per plant at the low, intermediate and high N deposition sites, respectively). The pattern of mass-adjusted root N uptake was opposite to this (47, 75 and 86 μg N per plant). • Drosera rotundifolia plants in this study switched from reliance on prey N to reliance on root-derived N as a result of increasing N availability from atmospheric N deposition. PMID:22506640

  9. A rapid and efficient method for isolating high quality DNA from leaves of carnivorous plants from the Drosera genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biteau, Flore; Nisse, Estelle; Hehn, Alain; Miguel, Sissi; Hannewald, Paul; Bourgaud, Frédéric

    2012-07-01

    Drosera rotundifolia, Drosera capensis, and Drosera regia are carnivorous plants of the sundew family, characterized by the presence of stalked and sticky glands on the upper leaf surface, to attract, trap, and digest insects. These plants contain exceptionally high amounts of polysaccharides, polyphenols, and other secondary metabolites that interfere with DNA isolation and subsequent enzymatic reactions such as PCR amplification. We present here a protocol for quick isolation of Drosera DNA with high yield and a high level of purity, by combining a borate extraction buffer with a commercial DNA extraction kit, and a proteinase K treatment during extraction. The yield of genomic DNA is from 13.36 μg/g of fresh weight to 35.29 μg/g depending of the species of Drosera, with a A₂₆₀/A₂₈₀ ratio of 1.43-1.92. Moreover, the procedure is quick and can be completed in 2.5 h. PMID:22002226

  10. Different mechanics of snap-trapping in the two closely related carnivorous plants Dionaea muscipula and Aldrovanda vesiculosa

    CERN Document Server

    Poppinga, Simon

    2011-01-01

    The carnivorous aquatic Waterwheel Plant (Aldrovanda vesiculosa L.) and the closely related terrestrial Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula SOL. EX J. ELLIS) both feature elaborate snap-traps, which shut after reception of an external mechanical stimulus by prey animals. Traditionally, Aldrovanda is considered as a miniature, aquatic Dionaea, an assumption which was already established by Charles Darwin. However, videos of snapping traps from both species suggest completely different closure mechanisms. Indeed, the well-described snapping mechanism in Dionaea comprises abrupt curvature inversion of the two trap lobes, while the closing movement in Aldrovanda involves deformation of the trap midrib but not of the lobes, which do not change curvature. In this paper, we present the first detailed mechanical models for these plants, which are based on the theory of thin solid membranes and explain this difference by showing that the fast snapping of Aldrovanda is due to kinematic amplification of the bending deforma...

  11. Glucan-rich diet is digested and taken up by the carnivorous sundew (Drosera rotundifolia L.): implication for a novel role of plant β-1,3-glucanases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalko, Jaroslav; Socha, Peter; Mészáros, Patrik; Blehová, Alžbeta; Libantová, Jana; Moravčíková, Jana; Matušíková, Ildikó

    2013-10-01

    Carnivory in plants evolved as an adaptation strategy to nutrient-poor environments. Thanks to specialized traps, carnivorous plants can gain nutrients from various heterotrophic sources such as small insects. Digestion in traps requires a coordinated action of several hydrolytic enzymes that break down complex substances into simple absorbable nutrients. Among these, several pathogenesis-related proteins including β-1,3-glucanases have previously been identified in digestive fluid of some carnivorous species. Here we show that a single acidic endo-β-1,3-glucanase of ~50 kDa is present in the digestive fluid of the flypaper-trapped sundew (Drosera rotundifolia L.). The enzyme is inducible with a complex plant β-glucan laminarin from which it releases simple saccharides when supplied to leaves as a substrate. Moreover, thin-layer chromatography of digestive exudates showed that the simplest degradation products (especially glucose) are taken up by the leaves. These results for the first time point on involvement of β-1,3-glucanases in digestion of carnivorous plants and demonstrate the uptake of saccharide-based compounds by traps. Such a strategy could enable the plant to utilize other types of nutritional sources e.g., pollen grains, fungal spores or detritus from environment. Possible multiple roles of β-1,3-glucanases in the digestive fluid of carnivorous sundew are also discussed. PMID:23832529

  12. Transcriptomics and molecular evolutionary rate analysis of the bladderwort (Utricularia, a carnivorous plant with a minimal genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herrera-Estrella Alfredo

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba (bladderwort is remarkable in having a minute genome, which at ca. 80 megabases is approximately half that of Arabidopsis. Bladderworts show an incredible diversity of forms surrounding a defined theme: tiny, bladder-like suction traps on terrestrial, epiphytic, or aquatic plants with a diversity of unusual vegetative forms. Utricularia plants, which are rootless, are also anomalous in physiological features (respiration and carbon distribution, and highly enhanced molecular evolutionary rates in chloroplast, mitochondrial and nuclear ribosomal sequences. Despite great interest in the genus, no genomic resources exist for Utricularia, and the substitution rate increase has received limited study. Results Here we describe the sequencing and analysis of the Utricularia gibba transcriptome. Three different organs were surveyed, the traps, the vegetative shoot bodies, and the inflorescence stems. We also examined the bladderwort transcriptome under diverse stress conditions. We detail aspects of functional classification, tissue similarity, nitrogen and phosphorus metabolism, respiration, DNA repair, and detoxification of reactive oxygen species (ROS. Long contigs of plastid and mitochondrial genomes, as well as sequences for 100 individual nuclear genes, were compared with those of other plants to better establish information on molecular evolutionary rates. Conclusion The Utricularia transcriptome provides a detailed genomic window into processes occurring in a carnivorous plant. It contains a deep representation of the complex metabolic pathways that characterize a putative minimal plant genome, permitting its use as a source of genomic information to explore the structural, functional, and evolutionary diversity of the genus. Vegetative shoots and traps are the most similar organs by functional classification of their transcriptome, the traps expressing hydrolytic enzymes for prey

  13. Nepenthes ampullaria (Nepenthaceae) Pitchers Are Unattractive to Gravid Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chou, Lee Yiung; Dykes, Gary A; Wilson, Robyn F; Clarke, Charles M

    2016-02-01

    Nepenthes pitcher plants are colonized by a variety of specialized arthropods. As Aedes mosquitoes are container breeders, Nepenthes pitchers are a potential candidate oviposition site for vector species, such as Aedes aegypti (L.) and Aedes albopictus (Skuse). However, Aedes spp. are not commonly encountered in Nepenthes pitchers, and the environment inside the pitchers of some species is lethal to them. One exception is Nepenthes ampullaria Jack, whose pitchers are known to be colonized by Ae. albopictus on very rare occasions. Given that Ae. albopictus larvae can survive in N. ampullaria pitcher fluids, we sought to determine why pitcher colonization is rare, testing the hypothesis that gravid Aedes mosquitoes are deterred from ovipositing into container habitats that have similar characteristics to N. ampullaria pitchers. Using plastic ovitraps of different sizes, colors, and with different types of fluids (based on the characteristics of N. ampullaria pitchers), we compared oviposition rates by Aedes mosquitoes in urban and rural areas within the geographical range of N. ampullaria near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Ovitraps that were black and large (>250-ml capacity) accumulated significantly more eggs than ovitraps that were smaller, or green in color. In terms of size and color, small, green ovitraps are analogous to N. ampullaria pitchers, indicating that these pitchers are not particularly attractive to gravid Ae. albopictus. Although Aedes spp. are capable of colonizing N. ampullaria pitchers, the pitchers are relatively unattractive to gravid females and do not represent a significant habitat for larvae of dengue vectors at present. PMID:26518035

  14. THREE NEW NEPENTHES FROM SULAWESI TENGAH

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    J. R. TURNBULL

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Three new high mountain forest taxa of Nepenthaceae are described from Central Sulawesi. The new species are Nepenthes glabratus, N. hamatus and N. infundibuliformis. Existing material at Herbarium Bogoriense indicated that all three are widespread in Central  Sulawesi

  15. Indole-3-acetic acid-producing yeasts in the phyllosphere of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Pei-Feng; Fang, Wei-Ta; Shin, Li-Ying; Wei, Jyuan-Yu; Fu, Shih-Feng; Chou, Jui-Yu

    2014-01-01

    Yeasts are widely distributed in nature and exist in association with other microorganisms as normal inhabitants of soil, vegetation, and aqueous environments. In this study, 12 yeast strains were enriched and isolated from leaf samples of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L., which is currently threatened because of restricted habitats and use in herbal industries. According to similarities in large subunit and small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequences, we identified 2 yeast species in 2 genera of the phylum Ascomycota, and 5 yeast species in 5 genera of the phylum Basidiomycota. All of the isolated yeasts produced indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) when cultivated in YPD broth supplemented with 0.1% L-tryptophan. Growth conditions, such as the pH and temperature of the medium, influenced yeast IAA production. Our results also suggested the existence of a tryptophan-independent IAA biosynthetic pathway. We evaluated the effects of various concentrations of exogenous IAA on yeast growth and observed that IAA produced by wild yeasts modifies auxin-inducible gene expression in Arabidopsis. Our data suggest that yeasts can promote plant growth and support ongoing prospecting of yeast strains for inclusion into biofertilizer for sustainable agriculture. PMID:25464336

  16. Indole-3-acetic acid-producing yeasts in the phyllosphere of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pei-Feng Sun

    Full Text Available Yeasts are widely distributed in nature and exist in association with other microorganisms as normal inhabitants of soil, vegetation, and aqueous environments. In this study, 12 yeast strains were enriched and isolated from leaf samples of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L., which is currently threatened because of restricted habitats and use in herbal industries. According to similarities in large subunit and small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequences, we identified 2 yeast species in 2 genera of the phylum Ascomycota, and 5 yeast species in 5 genera of the phylum Basidiomycota. All of the isolated yeasts produced indole-3-acetic acid (IAA when cultivated in YPD broth supplemented with 0.1% L-tryptophan. Growth conditions, such as the pH and temperature of the medium, influenced yeast IAA production. Our results also suggested the existence of a tryptophan-independent IAA biosynthetic pathway. We evaluated the effects of various concentrations of exogenous IAA on yeast growth and observed that IAA produced by wild yeasts modifies auxin-inducible gene expression in Arabidopsis. Our data suggest that yeasts can promote plant growth and support ongoing prospecting of yeast strains for inclusion into biofertilizer for sustainable agriculture.

  17. Is GC bias in the nuclear genome of the carnivorous plant Utricularia driven by ROS-based mutation and biased gene conversion?

    OpenAIRE

    Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Albert, Victor A.; Herrera-Estrella, Alfredo; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2011-01-01

    At less than 90 Mbp, the tiny nuclear genome of the carnivorous bladderwort plant Utricularia is an attractive model system for studying molecular evolutionary processes leading to genome miniaturization. Recently, we reported that expression of genes encoding DNA repair and reactive oxygen species (ROS) detoxification enzymes is highest in Utricularia traps, and we argued that ROS mutagenic action correlates with the high nucleotide substitution rates observed in the Utricularia plastid, mit...

  18. Trap geometry in three giant montane pitcher plant species from Borneo is a function of tree shrew body size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Lijin; Moran, Jonathan A; Clarke, Charles

    2010-04-01

    *Three Bornean pitcher plant species, Nepenthes lowii, N. rajah and N. macrophylla, produce modified pitchers that 'capture' tree shrew faeces for nutritional benefit. Tree shrews (Tupaia montana) feed on exudates produced by glands on the inner surfaces of the pitcher lids and defecate into the pitchers. *Here, we tested the hypothesis that pitcher geometry in these species is related to tree shrew body size by comparing the pitcher characteristics with those of five other 'typical' (arthropod-trapping) Nepenthes species. *We found that only pitchers with large orifices and lids that are concave, elongated and oriented approximately at right angles to the orifice capture faeces. The distance from the tree shrews' food source (that is, the lid nectar glands) to the front of the pitcher orifice precisely matches the head plus body length of T. montana in the faeces-trapping species, and is a function of orifice size and the angle of lid reflexion. *Substantial changes to nutrient acquisition strategies in carnivorous plants may occur through simple modifications to trap geometry. This extraordinary plant-animal interaction adds to a growing body of evidence that Nepenthes represents a candidate model for adaptive radiation with regard to nitrogen sequestration strategies. PMID:20100203

  19. Two New Nepenthes Species from the Philippines and an Emended Description of Nepenthes ramos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronemeyer, Thomas; Suarez, Wally; Nuytemans, Herman; Calaramo, Michael; Wistuba, Andreas; Mey, François S; Amoroso, Victor B

    2016-01-01

    With 50 species of the genus Nepenthes L. currently described from the Philippines, it is without doubt that the country, along with the islands of Sumatra (Indonesia) and Borneo (Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei), should be considered the center of diversity of the genus. In this work, we describe two new species. One species, N. aenigma sp. nov., is from Ilocos Norte province on Luzon Island and has the-for Nepenthes-unusual ecological preference to grow in dense vegetation in deep shade. The other new species is from Mount Hamiguitan in Davao Oriental province on Mindanao Island. With this new entry, Mount Hamiguitan is now home to four endemic species (N. peltata, N. micramphora, N. hamiguitanensis, N. justinae sp. nov.). Furthermore, we provide an emended description of N. ramos based on field data. Nepenthes kurata is synonymized here with N. ramos. PMID:27164153

  20. Demographic Study of Nepenthes Species (Nepenthaceae) Recorded along the Trail to the Summit of Mount Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia

    OpenAIRE

    Adam, Jumaat H.

    2002-01-01

    A total of 1255 pitcher plants belonging to two species were recorded from 11 plots set between 2610 m to 2970 m altitude on Mount Kinabalu, each with an area of 0.01 hectare. Of these plants, 1180 (94%) belonged to Nepenthes villosa, followed by N. kinabaluensis contained 75 (6%) plants. The density of N. villosa and N. kinabaluensis ranged from 0 to 260 and 0 to 65 plants respectively. Nepenthes villosa was recorded absent in P5, whereas N. kinabaluensis was recorded in P2, P3 and P11. Diff...

  1. Carnivorous heterotopias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lapina, Linda; Leer, Jonatan

    2016-01-01

    The past years have seen an upsurge of burger and barbecue restaurants in a Copenhagen gastronomic scene otherwise dominated by trends toward sustainability, ‘wholesome’, local and organic food. In these new spaces, meat is glorified and consumed materially and symbolically (through design and......’, opened in 2014 and elected as the 2014 Best New Restaurant in Copenhagen) and WarPigs, a Texas-inspired barbecue opened in 2015. We discuss negotiations of masculinity in these meatscapes that challenge contemporary ideals for (sustainable, moderate, wholesome) food consumption and gender performances....... We argue that these spaces of consumption express nostalgia and longing for authenticity that are simultaneously articulated as progressive and emancipatory. Consequently, these sites represent middle-class masculine counter-spaces – masculine, carnivorous heterotopias where archaic, working class...

  2. Fastest predators in the plant kingdom: functional morphology and biomechanics of suction traps found in the largest genus of carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poppinga, Simon; Weisskopf, Carmen; Westermeier, Anna Sophia; Masselter, Tom; Speck, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the physics of plant movements, which describe the interplay between plant architecture, movement speed and actuation principles, is essential for the comprehension of important processes like plant morphogenesis. Recent investigations especially on rapid plant movements at the interface of biology, physics and engineering sciences highlight how such fast motions can be achieved without the presence of muscles, nerves and technical hinge analogies. The suction traps (bladders) of carnivorous bladderworts (Utricularia spp., Lentibulariaceae, Lamiales) are considered as some of the most elaborate moving structures in the plant kingdom. A complex interplay of morphological and physiological adaptations allows the traps to pump water out of their body and to store elastic energy in the deformed bladder walls. Mechanical stimulation by prey entails opening of the otherwise watertight trapdoor, followed by trap wall relaxation, sucking in of water and prey, and consecutive trapdoor closure. Suction can also occur spontaneously in non-stimulated traps. We review the current state of knowledge about the suction trap mechanism with a focus on architectonically homogeneous traps of aquatic bladderwort species from section Utricularia (the so-called 'Utricularia vulgaris trap type'). The functional morphology and biomechanics of the traps are described in detail. We discuss open questions and propose promising aspects for future studies on these sophisticated ultra-fast trapping devices. PMID:26602984

  3. Cotton Fabric Coated with Conducting Polymers and its Application in Monitoring of Carnivorous Plant Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Václav Bajgar

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper describes the electrical plant response to mechanical stimulation monitored with the help of conducting polymers deposited on cotton fabric. Cotton fabric was coated with conducting polymers, polyaniline or polypyrrole, in situ during the oxidation of respective monomers in aqueous medium. Thus, modified fabrics were again coated with polypyrrole or polyaniline, respectively, in order to investigate any synergetic effect between both polymers with respect to conductivity and its stability during repeated dry cleaning. The coating was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy. The resulting fabrics have been used as electrodes to collect the electrical response to the stimulation of a Venus flytrap plant. This is a paradigm of the use of conducting polymers in monitoring of plant neurobiology.

  4. Cotton Fabric Coated with Conducting Polymers and its Application in Monitoring of Carnivorous Plant Response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bajgar, Václav; Penhaker, Marek; Martinková, Lenka; Pavlovič, Andrej; Bober, Patrycja; Trchová, Miroslava; Stejskal, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    The paper describes the electrical plant response to mechanical stimulation monitored with the help of conducting polymers deposited on cotton fabric. Cotton fabric was coated with conducting polymers, polyaniline or polypyrrole, in situ during the oxidation of respective monomers in aqueous medium. Thus, modified fabrics were again coated with polypyrrole or polyaniline, respectively, in order to investigate any synergetic effect between both polymers with respect to conductivity and its stability during repeated dry cleaning. The coating was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy. The resulting fabrics have been used as electrodes to collect the electrical response to the stimulation of a Venus flytrap plant. This is a paradigm of the use of conducting polymers in monitoring of plant neurobiology. PMID:27070612

  5. Cotton Fabric Coated with Conducting Polymers and its Application in Monitoring of Carnivorous Plant Response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bajgar, Václav; Penhaker, Marek; Martinková, Lenka; Pavlovič, Andrej; Bober, Patrycja; Trchová, Miroslava; Stejskal, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    The paper describes the electrical plant response to mechanical stimulation monitored with the help of conducting polymers deposited on cotton fabric. Cotton fabric was coated with conducting polymers, polyaniline or polypyrrole, in situ during the oxidation of respective monomers in aqueous medium. Thus, modified fabrics were again coated with polypyrrole or polyaniline, respectively, in order to investigate any synergetic effect between both polymers with respect to conductivity and its stability during repeated dry cleaning. The coating was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy. The resulting fabrics have been used as electrodes to collect the electrical response to the stimulation of a Venus flytrap plant. This is a paradigm of the use of conducting polymers in monitoring of plant neurobiology. PMID:27070612

  6. An S-like ribonuclease gene is used to generate a trap-leaf enzyme in the carnivorous plant Drosera adelae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okabe, Takahiro; Yoshimoto, Iwakiri; Hitoshi, Mori; Ogawa, Tomoshisa; Ohyama, Takashi

    2005-10-24

    Carnivorous plants usually grow in nutrient-deficient habitats, and thus they partly depend on insects for nitrogen and phosphate needed for amino acid and nucleotide synthesis. We report that a sticky digestive liquid from a sundew, Drosera adelae, contains an abundant amount of an S-like ribonuclease (RNase) that shows high amino acid-sequence similarity to S-like RNases induced by phosphate starvation or wounding in normal plants. By giving leaves an RNase "coat", D. adelae seems to achieve two requirements simultaneously to adapt itself to its specific surroundings: it obtains phosphates from insects, and defends itself against pathogen attack. PMID:16225872

  7. Cotton fabric coated with conducting polymers and its application in monitoring of carnivorous plant response

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bajgar, V.; Penhaker, M.; Martinková, L.; Pavlovič, A.; Bober, Patrycja; Trchová, Miroslava; Stejskal, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 16, č. 4 (2016), 498_1-498_12. ISSN 1424-8220 R&D Projects: GA TA ČR(CZ) TE01020022 Institutional support: RVO:61389013 Keywords : conducting polymers * plant neurobiology * polyaniline Subject RIV: CG - Electrochemistry Impact factor: 2.245, year: 2014

  8. Micronutrient content does not reflect the status of health in the aquatic carnivorous plant Aldrovanda vesiculosa

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 62, č. 6 (2007), s. 711-714. ISSN 0006-3088 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : rootless aquatic plant * disorder of shoot apices * tissue microelement content Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.207, year: 2007

  9. Cotton Fabric Coated with Conducting Polymers and its Application in Monitoring of Carnivorous Plant Response

    OpenAIRE

    Václav Bajgar; Marek Penhaker; Lenka Martinková; Andrej Pavlovič; Patrycja Bober; Miroslava Trchová; Jaroslav Stejskal

    2016-01-01

    The paper describes the electrical plant response to mechanical stimulation monitored with the help of conducting polymers deposited on cotton fabric. Cotton fabric was coated with conducting polymers, polyaniline or polypyrrole, in situ during the oxidation of respective monomers in aqueous medium. Thus, modified fabrics were again coated with polypyrrole or polyaniline, respectively, in order to investigate any synergetic effect between both polymers with respect to conductivity and its sta...

  10. Fastest predators in plant kingdom: Functional morphology and biomechanics of suction traps found in the largest genus of carnivorous plants

    OpenAIRE

    Poppinga, S.; Weißkopf, C.; Westermeier, A.; Masselter, T.; Speck, T.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the physics of plant movements, which describe the interplay between plant architecture, movement speed and actuation principles, is essential for the comprehension of important processes like plant morphogenesis. Recent investigations especially on rapid plant movements at the interface of biology, physics and engineering sciences highlight how such fast motions can be achieved without the presence of muscles, nerves and technical hinge analogies. The suction traps (bladders) o...

  11. Possible Subglacial Volcanoes in Nepenthes Mensae, Eastern Hemisphere, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Pablo, M. A.; Caprarelli, G.

    2010-03-01

    We report our observations of 50 hilly features in Nepenthes Mensae, Mars, what we interpret to be possible moberg ridges, formed by fissural eruption of lava under thick ice layer. We finally discuss some of their geological implications.

  12. Two New Nepenthes Species from the Philippines and an Emended Description of Nepenthes ramos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Gronemeyer

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available With 50 species of the genus Nepenthes L. currently described from the Philippines, it is without doubt that the country, along with the islands of Sumatra (Indonesia and Borneo (Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, should be considered the center of diversity of the genus. In this work, we describe two new species. One species, N. aenigma sp. nov., is from Ilocos Norte province on Luzon Island and has the—for Nepenthes—unusual ecological preference to grow in dense vegetation in deep shade. The other new species is from Mount Hamiguitan in Davao Oriental province on Mindanao Island. With this new entry, Mount Hamiguitan is now home to four endemic species (N. peltata, N. micramphora, N. hamiguitanensis, N. justinae sp. nov.. Furthermore, we provide an emended description of N. ramos based on field data. Nepenthes kurata is synonymized here with N. ramos.

  13. Venus Flytrap HKT1-Type Channel Provides for Prey Sodium Uptake into Carnivorous Plant Without Conflicting with Electrical Excitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böhm, J.; Scherzer, S.; Shabala, S.; Krol, E.; Neher, E.; Mueller, T.D.; Hedrich, R.

    2016-01-01

    The animal diet of the carnivorous Venus flytrap, Dionaea muscipula, contains a sodium load that enters the capture organ via an HKT1-type sodium channel, expressed in special epithelia cells on the inner trap lobe surface. DmHKT1 expression and sodium uptake activity is induced upon prey contact. Here, we analyzed the HKT1 properties required for prey sodium osmolyte management of carnivorous Dionaea. Analyses were based on homology modeling, generation of model-derived point mutants, and their functional testing in Xenopus oocytes. We showed that the wild-type HKT1 and its Na+- and K+-permeable mutants function as ion channels rather than K+ transporters driven by proton or sodium gradients. These structural and biophysical features of a high-capacity, Na+-selective ion channel enable Dionaea glands to manage prey-derived sodium loads without confounding the action potential-based information management of the flytrap. PMID:26455461

  14. Venus Flytrap HKT1-Type Channel Provides for Prey Sodium Uptake into Carnivorous Plant Without Conflicting with Electrical Excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böhm, J; Scherzer, S; Shabala, S; Krol, E; Neher, E; Mueller, T D; Hedrich, R

    2016-03-01

    The animal diet of the carnivorous Venus flytrap, Dionaea muscipula, contains a sodium load that enters the capture organ via an HKT1-type sodium channel, expressed in special epithelia cells on the inner trap lobe surface. DmHKT1 expression and sodium uptake activity is induced upon prey contact. Here, we analyzed the HKT1 properties required for prey sodium osmolyte management of carnivorous Dionaea. Analyses were based on homology modeling, generation of model-derived point mutants, and their functional testing in Xenopus oocytes. We showed that the wild-type HKT1 and its Na(+)- and K(+)-permeable mutants function as ion channels rather than K(+) transporters driven by proton or sodium gradients. These structural and biophysical features of a high-capacity, Na(+)-selective ion channel enable Dionaea glands to manage prey-derived sodium loads without confounding the action potential-based information management of the flytrap. PMID:26455461

  15. Nepenthes diversity and abundance in five habitats in Brunei Darussalam

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurul Amal Latiff

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The genus Nepenthes is known to be diverse in Bornean forests and has been   recorded in Brunei Darussalam in various forest types. We aim to investigate variation in Nepenthes species richness and abundance at five forest types throughout Brunei Darussalam: open secondary, heath, peat swamp, white sand and mixed dipterocarp forests. A total of thirty-nine 5 × 5 m2 plots were set up in these forest types. Within each plot,     Nepenthes species abundance was quantified, with Nepenthes voucher specimens collected and identified to determine species richness. No significant differences were detected either for Nepenthes species richness or abundance between the five forest types, despite records of Nepenthes in Brunei showing preferences for particular habitat types. We     suggest that average species richness and abundance remained constant regardless of forest types in this study, but that these results would likely change if sampling intensity is increased in future studies. 

  16. Photosynthesis and Nitrogen Metabolism of Nepenthes alata in Response to Inorganic NO3- and Organic Prey N in the Greenhouse

    OpenAIRE

    He, Jie; Zain, Ameerah

    2012-01-01

    This study investigates the relative importance of leaf carnivory on Nepenthes alata by studying the effect of different nitrogen (N) sources on its photosynthesis and N metabolism in the greenhouse. Plants were given either inorganic NO3-, organic N derived from meal worms, Tenebrio molitor, or both NO3- and organic N for a period of four weeks. Leaf lamina (defined as leaves) had significant higher photosynthetic pigments and light saturation for photosynthesis compared to that of modified ...

  17. Piante carnivore: un percorso didattico

    OpenAIRE

    Delunas, Cristina; Fogu, Maria Caterina

    2006-01-01

    Since carnivorous plants always stir up interest and curiosity, we have realized a didactic route describing their different evolutional strategies. The route begins from observation of specimens present in the «Orto Botanico di Cagliari» to arrive inside the «Museo Botanico» where, by means of ancient tridimensional models and others of new constructions together with copious descriptive material, the visitor is guided to discover these strange vegetables.

  18. PERKECAMBAHAN BIJI KANTONG SEMAR (Nepenthes gracilis Korth. SECARA IN VITRO

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yupi Isnaini

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Mature seeds of a pitcher plant (Nepenthes grocilis Korth. were cultured in seven different media, namely half strength MS medium, half strength MS medium supplemented with BAP and NAA, 0.8 KC medium supplemented with coconut water + bean sprout extract, 0.8 KC + H3B03 + CuSO3 + ZnSO4 + coconut water + bean sprout extract, 0.25 KC + Vitamin (MS, HYPONeX + coconut water + sprout bean extract, and HYPONeX + potato extract. Each culture was incubated under light conditions. Young seedlings were subsequently transferred onto fresh media of 0.5 MS and 0.25 KC supplemented with 0, 5, 10, and 15 mg/I GA3 after 15 weeks of sowing. Seed germination and seedling growth were observed weekly. It was noted that the seeds started to germinate in ten weeks after incubation and the highest seed germination was obtained in HYPONeX medium + potato extract. However, the appearance of the seedlings was better on MS media and KC media without organic compound than on the other media. Seedlings in all level of GA3 in half strength MS media and 0.25 KC media grew faster than those in media without GA3.

  19. Geomorphological evidence of water level changes in Nepenthes Mensae, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Pablo, Miguel Ángel; Pacifici, Andrea

    2008-08-01

    In the western sector of Nepenthes Mensae, Mars, there are some geomorphological features that could be related to a standing water sheet in the area, such as fluvial terraces, deltas and shorelines. A detailed analysis of these features reveals two variations in water level, probably related to tectonic processes, as suggested by the existence of a fissural volcano at this site.

  20. Nepenthes naga, a new species of Nepenthaceae from Bukit Barisan of Sumatra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pitra - Akhriadi

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available AKHRIADI, P., HERNAWATI, PRIMALDHI, A. & HAMBALI, M. 2009. Nepenthes naga, a new species of Nepenthaceae from Bukit Barisan of Sumatra. Reinwardtia 12(5: 339 – 342. ⎯ A new species of Nepenthes from North Sumatra is described as Nepenthes naga Akhriadi, Hernawati, Primaldhi & Hambali. The key characters for this species are a triangular dichotomous appendage resembling a snake's tongue inserted sub-apically on the undersurface of the lid, and the undulate lid margin.

  1. Demographic Study of Nepenthes Species (Nepenthaceae Recorded along the Trail to the Summit of Mount Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jumaat H. Adam

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available A total of 1255 pitcher plants belonging to two species were recorded from 11 plots set between 2610 m to 2970 m altitude on Mount Kinabalu, each with an area of 0.01 hectare. Of these plants, 1180 (94% belonged to Nepenthes villosa, followed by N. kinabaluensis contained 75 (6% plants. The density of N. villosa and N. kinabaluensis ranged from 0 to 260 and 0 to 65 plants respectively. Nepenthes villosa was recorded absent in P5, whereas N. kinabaluensis was recorded in P2, P3 and P11. Differences in density of both species between the study plots is influenced by combination of factors, which include topography, soil, habitat, different light intensities reaching the forest floor and water deficient due to exposure to wind and light intensities at higher altitudes. The Id values were greater than 1 for both species in all plots showing contagious dispersion pattern. Size class distribution and population structure varied for both species between plots. Generally there were more seedlings and juveniles than mature plants of both species at different elevations indicating regenerating populations. In mature plants there were more male than female plants in both species.

  2. Is GC bias in the nuclear genome of the carnivorous plant Utricularia driven by ROS-based mutation and biased gene conversion?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Albert, Victor A; Herrera-Estrella, Alfredo; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2011-11-01

    At less than 90 Mbp, the tiny nuclear genome of the carnivorous bladderwort plant Utricularia is an attractive model system for studying molecular evolutionary processes leading to genome miniaturization. Recently, we reported that expression of genes encoding DNA repair and reactive oxygen species (ROS) detoxification enzymes is highest in Utricularia traps, and we argued that ROS mutagenic action correlates with the high nucleotide substitution rates observed in the Utricularia plastid, mitochondrial, and nuclear genomes. Here, we extend our analysis of 100 nuclear genes from Utricularia and related asterid eudicots to examine nucleotide substitution biases and their potential correlation with ROS-induced DNA lesions. We discovered an unusual bias toward GC nucleotides, most prominently in transition substitutions at the third position of codons, which are presumably silent with respect to adaptation. Given the general tendency of biased gene conversion to drive GC bias, and of ROS to induce double strand breaks requiring recombinational repair, we propose that some of the unusual features of the bladderwort and its genome may be more reflective of these nonadaptive processes than of natural selection. PMID:22057327

  3. Uptake of Fe, Mn and Cu by Nepenthes sp. in Ex-Mining Soil at Pelepah Kanan Kota Tinggi, Johor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heavy metals content of Fe, Mn and Cu in soil and Nephentes sp. in a former iron and tin mining land at Lombong Pelepah Kanan, Kota Tinggi, Johor were determined. Heavy metal content were determined in four plant component namely roots, stems, leaves and pots. A number of 15 Nepenthes sp. plants and their corresponding substrate samples were collected for analysis. The composition of heavy metals in soil were extracted using mixture of nitric acid and perchloric acid. Heavy metals content in plants sample were extracted by wet digestion method. Heavy metal content in solution extract of soil and plant component were determined with Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (FAAS). The BAC (Biological Absorption Coefficient) was calculated as ratio of the heavy metal concentration in plant to that of its substrate. The analyses of soil showed that the former mining area was dominated by sand and acidic. It also has a low contents of organic matter and low reading of soil electrical conductivity. The soil contain higher concentration of Fe followed by Mn and Cu. Based on BAC value Nepenthes sp can be used as a bio-indicator for Fe. (author)

  4. Biomechanik von Insekten-Pflanzen-Interaktionen bei Nepenthes-Kannenpflanzen

    OpenAIRE

    Bohn, Holger Florian

    2008-01-01

    Interaktionen zwischen Insekten und Pflanzen können auf chemischen oder mechanischen Faktoren beruhen. Mechanische Faktoren spielen eine besonders wichtige Rolle bei den Fallen karnivorer Pflanzen. Ziel dieser Arbeit war es, die Rolle mechanischer Faktoren in der Interaktion zwischen der Kannenpflanze Nepenthes bicalcarata und der Ameise Camponotus schmitzi aufzuklären, bei der Ameisen Gegenanpassungen zu spezialisierten pflanzlichen Fangstrukturen entwickelt haben. Im Rahmen meiner Arbeit ha...

  5. Global large carnivore conservation and international law

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Trouwborst, A.

    2015-01-01

    International cooperation, including through international legal instruments, appears important for the conservation of large carnivores worldwide. This is due to, inter alia, the worrying conservation status and population trends of many large carnivore species; the importance of large carnivores f

  6. The Occurrence of Hybrid in Nepenthes hookeriana Lindl. from Central Kalimantan can be Detected by RAPD and ISSR Markers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KUSUMADEWI SRI YULITA

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Nepenthes spp. (Nepenthaceae is one of the most popular ornamental plants in Southeast Asia. There are 97 species of Nepenthes to which 64 are found in Indonesia with the center of its diversity located in Borneo. N. x hookeriana was hypothesised to be a natural hybrid between N. ampullaria and N. rafflesiana on the basis of morphological characters. Several variants of each species were also known. This present study aimed to detect the occurrence of hybrid within N. x hookeriana ‘spotted’ and ‘green’ variant using random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD and inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSR. Five RAPD primers and three ISSR primers were used to amplify total DNA genome and produced 83 polymorphic bands ranging in size from 300-1700 bp. Clustering analysis was performed based on RAPD and ISSR profiles using the UPGMA method. The genetic similarity of the combined markers range between 0.30-0.75 indicating a narrow range of genetic similarity among the accessions. Results from cluster analyses suggested that N. x hookeriana was indeed a hybrid between N. ampullaria and N. Rafflesiana, however it was genetically more similar to N. raflessiana.

  7. Suppression of phytopathogenic fungi by hexane extract of Nepenthes ventricosa x maxima leaf.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Kwang-Soo; Lee, Samkeun; Cha, Byeong Jin

    2007-12-01

    The hexane extract of Nepenthes ventricosa x maxima leaf exhibited antifungal activity against Alternaria alternata, Aspergillus niger, Bipolaris oryzae, Fusarium oxysporum, Phytophthora capsici, Rhizoctonia solani, Rhizopus stolonifer var. stolonifer and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. PMID:17573203

  8. Geological Cartography of Inner Materials of an Impact Crater on Nepenthes Mensae, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenciano, A.; de Pablo, M. A.

    2012-03-01

    We present the geological map and a brief description of the materials, its geological history and an approach to their astrobiological and exopaleontological implications from sedimentary materials located into impact crater, in Nepenthes Mensae, Mars.

  9. Chain of Depressions and the Watersheet Evolution in Nepenthes Mensae, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Pablo, M. A.; Pacifici, A.

    2009-03-01

    Our analysis of the MOLA-derived topographic map of the Nepenthes Mensae area, Mars, revealed the existence of different depressions near the highlands-lowlands boundary. We interpret the depressions such as a possible chain of lakes.

  10. Normal glucose metabolism of healthy carnivores mimics diabetes pathology of non-carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    ThomasSchermerhorn

    2013-01-01

    Carnivores, such as the dolphin and the domestic cat, have numerous adaptations that befit consumption of diets with high protein and fat content, with little carbohydrate content. Consequently, nutrient metabolism in carnivorous species differs substantially from that of non-carnivores. Important metabolic pathways known to differ between carnivores and non-carnivores are implicated in the development of diabetes and insulin resistance in non-carnivores: 1.) the hepatic glucokinase (GCK) pa...

  11. Normal Glucose Metabolism in Carnivores Overlaps with Diabetes Pathology in Non-Carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    Schermerhorn, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Carnivores, such as the dolphin and the domestic cat, have numerous adaptations that befit consumption of diets with high protein and fat content, with little carbohydrate content. Consequently, nutrient metabolism in carnivorous species differs substantially from that of non-carnivores. Important metabolic pathways known to differ between carnivores and non-carnivores are implicated in the development of diabetes and insulin resistance in non-carnivores: (1) the hepatic glucokinase (GCK) pat...

  12. The systematics of carnivorous sponges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hestetun, Jon Thomassen; Vacelet, Jean; Boury-Esnault, Nicole; Borchiellini, Carole; Kelly, Michelle; Ríos, Pilar; Cristobo, Javier; Rapp, Hans Tore

    2016-01-01

    Carnivorous sponges are characterized by their unique method of capturing mesoplanktonic prey coupled with the complete or partial reduction of the aquiferous system characteristic of the phylum Porifera. Current systematics place the vast majority of carnivorous sponges within Cladorhizidae, with certain species assigned to Guitarridae and Esperiopsidae. Morphological characters have not been able to show whether this classification is evolutionary accurate, and whether carnivory has evolved once or in several lineages. In the present paper we present the first comprehensive molecular phylogeny of the carnivorous sponges, interpret these results in conjunction with morphological characters, and propose a revised classification of the group. Molecular phylogenies were inferred using 18S rDNA and a combined dataset of partial 28S rDNA, COI and ALG11 sequences. The results recovered carnivorous sponges as a clade closely related to the families Mycalidae and Guitarridae, showing family Cladorhizidae to be monophyletic and also including carnivorous species currently placed in other families. The genus Lycopodina is resurrected for species currently placed in the paraphyletic subgenus Asbestopluma (Asbestopluma) featuring forceps spicules and lacking sigmas or sigmancistras. The genera Chondrocladia and Cladorhiza are found to be monophyletic. However, results indicate that the subgenus Chondrocladia is polyphyletic with respect to the subgenera Meliiderma and Symmetrocladia. Euchelipluma, formerly Guitarridae, is retained, but transferred to Cladorhizidae. The four known carnivorous species currently in Esperiopsis are transferred to Abyssocladia. Neocladia is a junior homonym and is here renamed Koltunicladia. Our results provide strong evidence in support of the hypothesis that carnivory in sponges has evolved only once. While spicule characters mostly reflect monophyletic groups at the generic level, differences between genera represent evolution within family

  13. Development and regeneration ability of the wax coverage in Nepenthes alata pitchers: a cryo-SEM approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorb, Elena V; Baum, Martina J; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2013-01-01

    The morphogenesis of the composite epicuticular wax coverage and regeneration ability of the upper wax layer in Nepenthes alata pitchers were studied using a cryo-scanning electron microscopy. Examination of pitchers of different ages revealed six stages in the wax coverage development. In the first stage, wax crystals resemble those found recently in mature pitches of N. dicksoniana and N. ventricosa. Platelets of the upper wax layer originate from broadened tips of stalks during the last developmental stage. Contrary to previous hypotheses, we found that wax crystals of both layers as well as the stalks connecting them are oriented perpendicularly to the pitcher wall. No changes in the height of the wax coverage were detected in 4-8 weeks after mechanical removal of the upper wax layer from mature pitchers on plants. This indicates that the wax coverage in N. alata pitchers is unable to regenerate. PMID:24165663

  14. Surface hydrophobicity of slippery zones in the pitchers of two Nepenthes species and a hybrid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lixin; Zhou, Qiang

    2016-01-01

    To investigate the hydrophobicity of slippery zones, static contact angle measurement and microstructure observation of slippery surfaces from two Nepenthes species and a hybrid were conducted. Marginally different static contact angles were observed, as the smallest (133.83°) and greatest (143.63°) values were recorded for the N. alata and N. miranda respectively, and the median value (140.40°) was presented for the N. khasiana. The slippery zones under investigation exhibited rather similar surface morphologies, but different structural dimensions. These findings probably suggest that the geometrical dimensions of surface architecture exert primary effects on differences in the hydrophobicity of the slippery zone. Based on the Wenzel and Cassie-Baxter equations, models were proposed to analyze the manner in which geometrical dimensions affect the hydrophobicity of the slippery surfaces. The results of our analysis demonstrated that the different structural dimensions of lunate cells and wax platelets make the slippery zones present different real area of the rough surface and thereby generate somewhat distinguishable hydrophobicity. The results support a supplementary interpretation of surface hydrophobicity in plant leaves, and provide a theoretical foundation for developing bioinspired materials with hydrophobic properties and self-cleaning abilities. PMID:26813707

  15. Frugivory and seed dispersal by carnivorous mammals, and associated fruit characteristics, in undisturbed Mediterranean habitatsFrugivory and seed dispersal by carnivorous mammals, and associated fruit characteristics, in undisturbed Mediterranean habitats

    OpenAIRE

    Herrera, Carlos M.

    1989-01-01

    The role of carnivorous mammals (Order Carnivora) in seed dispersal has remained virtually unexplored, despite the well-known fact that these animals commonly ingest fleshy fruits and defecate their seeds. This paper presents data on the dispersal of seeds by carnivores in an extensive area of relatively undisturbed habitats in south­ eastern Spain, and is based on the examination of more than 1,500 carnivore feces collected over a 10-yr period. Seeds from 27 plant ...

  16. Recircumscription of the Nepenthes alata group (Caryophyllales: Nepenthaceae, in the Philippines, with four new species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Cheek

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available An overview of Nepenthes in the Philippines is presented. Four new species, Nepenthes extincta sp. nov., N. kitanglad sp. nov., N. kurata sp. nov. and N. leyte sp. nov. are described and illustrated from the Philippines and placed in the Nepenthes alata group. An updated circumscription and key to the species of the group is provided. Delimitation and comparison with the Regiae group is given. All four of the newly described species are assessed as threatened using the International Union for the Conservation of Nature 2012 standard, and one, N. extincta sp. nov. is considered likely to be already extinct due to open-cast mining. Logging and conversion of forest habitat are thought to be the main threats to the other three species.

  17. Feeding on prey increases photosynthetic efficiency in the carnivorous sundew Drosera capensis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pavlovič, A.; Krausko, M.; Libiaková, M.; Adamec, Lubomír

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 113, č. 1 (2014), s. 69-78. ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : carnivorous plants * fruit flies * digestive enzymes Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.654, year: 2014

  18. Layers and Boulders in Crater Wall, Nepenthes Mensae Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    Peering down into craters offers Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) scientists an opportunity to examine one of the few landforms that Mars shares in common with the other planets and moons of our Solar System.The picture on the left (above) is a MOC context frame taken at the same time as the MOC high resolution image on the right. The white box on the left shows the location of the high resolution view. The high resolution image was targeted on a 3 kilometers (1.9 miles) wide impact crater on the floor of a larger crater in the Nepenthes Mensae region (near 3oS, 239oW). The context image is about 115 km (71 mi) across, the high-resolution image is 3 km (1.9 mi) across, and both are illuminated from the left/lower left.The 3 km diameter crater in the MOC image on the right is three times wider than the famous Meteor Crater in northern Arizona, USA. The high resolution image shows many small windblown drifts or dunes in the low areas both within the crater and outside on the surrounding terrain. Some portions of the crater's walls exhibit outcrops of bare, layered rock. Large boulders have been dislodged from the walls and have tumbled down the slopes to the crater floor. Many of these boulders are bigger than school buses and automobiles.

  19. Chemical composition of fish and diets - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  20. Fish culture data - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  1. Growth data - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  2. Nepenthes khasiana mediated synthesis of stabilized gold nanoparticles: Characterization and biocompatibility studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhamecha, Dinesh; Jalalpure, Sunil; Jadhav, Kiran

    2016-01-01

    The current study summarizes a unique green process for the synthesis of gold nanoparticles by simple treatment of gold salts with aqueous extract of Nepenthes khasiana (NK)--a red listed medicinal plant and its characterization. Study on the effect of different process parameters like temperature, pH and stirring on surface and stability characteristics has been demonstrated. Formation of GNPs was visually observed by change in color from colorless to wine red and characterized by UV-Visible spectroscopy, FT-IR spectroscopy, Zetasizer, X-RD, ICP-AES, SEM-EDAX, AFM and TEM. In vitro stability studies of gold colloidal dispersion in various blood components suggest that, NK mediated GNPs exhibit remarkable in vitro stability in 2% bovine serum albumin, 2% human serum albumin (HSA), 0.2M histidine, and 0.2M cysteine but unstable in 5% NaCl solution and acidic pH. Biocompatibility of NK stabilized GNPs against normal mouse fibroblasts (L929) cell lines revealed nontoxic nature of GNPs and thus provides exceptional opportunities for their uses as nanomedicine for diagnosis and drug therapy. The role of antioxidant phytochemicals (flavonoids and polyphenols) of NK extract in synthesis of biocompatible and stabilized GNPs was demonstrated by estimating total flavonoid content, total phenolic content and total antioxidant capacity of extract before and after formation of GNPs. Fast and easy synthesis of biocompatible GNPs possesses unique physical and chemical features which serve as an advantage for its use in various biomedical applications. The overall approach designated in the present research investigation for the synthesis of GNPs is based on all 12 principles of green chemistry, in which no man-made chemical other than the gold chloride was used. PMID:26716586

  3. Mechanism for rapid passive-dynamic prey capture in a pitcher plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Paulin, Marion; Robert, Daniel; Sutton, Gregory P

    2015-10-27

    Plants use rapid movements to disperse seed, spores, or pollen and catch animal prey. Most rapid-release mechanisms only work once and, if repeatable, regaining the prerelease state is a slow and costly process. We present an encompassing mechanism for a rapid, repeatable, passive-dynamic motion used by a carnivorous pitcher plant to catch prey. Nepenthes gracilis uses the impact of rain drops to catapult insects from the underside of the canopy-like pitcher lid into the fluid-filled trap below. High-speed video and laser vibrometry revealed that the lid acts as a torsional spring system, driven by rain drops. During the initial downstroke, the tip of the lid reached peak velocities similar to fast animal motions and an order of magnitude faster than the snap traps of Venus flytraps and catapulting tentacles of the sundew Drosera glanduligera. In contrast to these active movements, the N. gracilis lid oscillation requires neither mechanical preloading nor metabolic energy, and its repeatability is only limited by the intensity and duration of rainfall. The underside of the lid is coated with friction-reducing wax crystals, making insects more vulnerable to perturbations. We show that the trapping success of N. gracilis relies on the combination of material stiffness adapted for momentum transfer and the antiadhesive properties of the wax crystal surface. The impact-driven oscillation of the N. gracilis lid represents a new kind of rapid plant movement with adaptive function. Our findings establish the existence of a continuum between active and passive trapping mechanisms in carnivorous plants. PMID:26438874

  4. Heavy Metal Uptake by Nepenthes sp. in Ex-Iron and Tin Mine Soil, Pelepah Kanan, Kota Tinggi, Johor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heavy metals which are Pb, Co, Ni, Zn and Cd content in four Nephentes sp. plant component (roots, stem, leaf and pots) and in soil substrates from former iron and tin mining land at Pelepah Kanan, Kota Tinggi, Johor were determined. The composition of heavy metals in soil were extracted using a mixture of concentrated nitric acid and perchloric acid. Meanwhile, heavy metals in plants samples were extracted using wet digestion method. Heavy metals content in solution extract of soil and plant were determined by Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (FAAS - model Perkin Elmer 3300). BAC (Biological Absorption Coefficient) which is a ratio of heavy metal content in plant to that of heavy metal in soil was obtained by calculation. The result of analyses showed that the former mining area has low organic matter contents and low values of soil electrical conductivity, whereas the soil pH showed an acidic value. Concentration of heavy metal in soil substrates in decreasing sequence start with Zn at 698.5 mg/ kg followed by Co (182.9 mg/ kg), Pb (58.2 mg/ kg), Ni (12.2 mg/ kg) and Cd (2.09 mg/ kg). Heavy metal concentration in plant in decreasing sequence was Ni>Co>Cd>Pb>Zn. Concentration in different part of the plant did not show any significant difference for all of the metals. Nepenthes sp. was found to accumulate high concentration of Ni as indicated by its high BAC value. This plant may be useful as bio-indicator for high concentration of Ni in soil. (author)

  5. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zach J Farris

    Full Text Available The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore conservation worldwide. Utilizing photographic, line-transect, and habitat sampling, as well as landscape analyses and village-based bushmeat hunting surveys, we provide the first investigation of how multiple forms of habitat degradation (fragmentation, exotic carnivores, human encroachment, and hunting affect carnivore occupancy across Madagascar's largest protected area: the Masoala-Makira landscape. We found that as degradation increased, native carnivore occupancy and encounter rates decreased while exotic carnivore occupancy and encounter rates increased. Feral cats (Felis species and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris had higher occupancy than half of the native carnivore species across Madagascar's largest protected landscape. Bird and small mammal encounter rates were negatively associated with exotic carnivore occupancy, but positively associated with the occupancy of four native carnivore species. Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana occupancy was constrained by the presence of exotic feral cats and exotic small Indian civet (Viverricula indica. Hunting was intense across the four study sites where hunting was studied, with the highest rates for the small Indian civet (mean=90 individuals consumed/year, the ring-tailed vontsira (Galidia elegans (mean=58 consumed/year, and the fosa (Cryptoprocta ferox (mean=31 consumed/year. Our modeling results suggest hunters target intact forest where carnivore occupancy, abundance, and species richness, are highest

  6. Population ecology of the endangered aquatic carnivorous macrophyte Aldrovanda vesiculosa at a naturalised site in North America

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cross, A. T.; Skates, L. M.; Adamec, Lubomír; Hammond, C. M.; Sheridan, P. M.; Dixon, K. W.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 60, č. 9 (2015), s. 1772-1783. ISSN 0046-5070 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plant * competition * population ecology Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.738, year: 2014

  7. Importancia de la heterogeneidad ambiental en la ecología de plantas carnívoras mediterráneas: implicaciones para la conservación Environmental heterogeneity and the ecology of carnivorous plants: implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regino Zamora

    2002-03-01

    Full Text Available En la cuenca mediterránea, la mayoría de las plantas carnívoras pertenecientes al género Pinguicula habitan las paredes húmedas de montañas calizas. Estos escenarios rocosos condicionan la ecología de las poblaciones situadas en distintos exposiciones (solana versus umbría. Las diferencias temporales en la floración entre plantas que crecen en distintos microhábitats, unido a las diferencias espaciales en la distribución y abundancia de las especies de polinizadores, provocan barreras al flujo genico vía polen entre microhábitats soleados y umbríos. Estos mecanismos ecológicos pueden actuar sinérgicamente con otros factores que limitan el flujo génico, como distancia geográfica y la compleja orografía de las montañas, favoreciendo la diferenciación local. Las poblaciones de Pinguicula vallisneriifolia muestran también diferentes abundancias y estructuras demográficas dependiendo del microhábitat donde crecen las plantas. El carácter perenne y la reproducción asexual de esta planta le permite ralentizar la extinción poblacional, incluso en ausencia de reclutamiento via plántula en los lugares secos y soleados. Sin embargo, con la actual tendencia hacia una mayor aridez, los escasos micrositios adecuados para la germinación y establecimiento de plántulas se desplazan hacia los sectores de las paredes más umbríos y húmedos, pero donde el desarrollo reproductivo está limitado por la escasez de luz. Para la conservación de esta planta carnívora hay que llevar a cabo medidas de manejo para mantener un número mínimo de nichos de regeneración efectivos. La conservación de P. vallisneriifolia pasa por mantener la riqueza de escenarios ecológicos (i.e., mantener poblaciones de sol versus de sombra, como parte de la variabilidad total a conservar, no solo geográfica, sino también de escenario microclimáticoMost carnivorous plants belonging to the Pinguicula genus inhabit mountains in the Mediterranean basin

  8. Development of SCAR markers for species identification of the genus Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anuniwat, A; Chaveerach, A; Tanee, T; Sudmoon, R

    2009-11-15

    Nepenthes species in Thailand, namely N. mirabilis Druce, N. gracilis Korth., N. smilesii Hemsl., N. ampullaria Jack and N. kampotiana Lecomte, were collected for development of Sequence Characterized Amplified Region (SCAR) marker, a genotype identification tool. Forty Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA (RAPD) primers were screened and three successful primers produced different banding patterns including five candidate species-specific markers. The candidate markers were cloned and sequenced. The marker sequences are 602, 379, 420, 473 and 1017 bp for N. mirabilis, N. gracilis, N. smilesii, N. ampullaria and N. kampotiana, respectively. Then the sequences were used to design primers for development of a species-specific band being a SCAR marker, including Mir 1, Mir 2 and Mir 3 for N. mirabilis; Gra 1 and Gra 2 for N. gracilis; Smi 1, Smi 2 and Smi 3 for N. smilesii; Amp 1 and Amp 2 for N. ampullaria and Kam 1 and Kam 2 of N. kampotiana. The primers were evaluated with each other Nepenthes species. Finally, species-specific SCAR markers were successfully developed for N. gracilis, N. ampullaria and N. kampotiana. Application of these markers is feasible for identification of Nepenthes species in Thailand. PMID:20180319

  9. The carnivorous bladderwort (Utricularia, Lentibulariaceae): a system inflates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, Victor A; Jobson, Richard W; Michael, Todd P; Taylor, Derek J

    2010-01-01

    Carnivorous plants inhabit nutrient-poor environments, where prominent targets of prey capture are organic nitrogen and phosphorus. Some carnivorous plants also acquire carbon from their victims. A new report focusing on Utricularia, the bladderwort, demonstrates that carbon assimilated from photosynthesis is paradoxically secreted into the trapping environment, where it may help to support a mutualistic bacterial community. This bacterial community may also secrete allelochemicals that attract microcrustaceans which bear a strong overt resemblance to bladderwort traps. Furthermore, Utricularia and its sister genus Genlisea share anomalous molecular evolutionary features, such as highly increased rates of nucleotide substitution and dynamic evolution of genome size, from approximately 60-1500 megabases depending on the species or even population. A mechanistic hypothesis, based on the mutagenic action of reactive oxygen species (ROS) is proposed to underlie these phenomena, involving error-prone repair at the level of DNA bases and double-strand breaks. It is argued that these plants are prime candidates for further research on the complexities of plant physiology associated with carnivory, metagenomic surveys of trap microbial communities, novel plant nitrogen/nutrient utilization pathways, the ecology of prey attraction, whole-plant and trap comparative development, and, finally, evolution of the minimal angiosperm genome. PMID:20007200

  10. Isotopic tracking of large carnivore palaeoecology in the mammoth steppe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocherens, Hervé

    2015-06-01

    Isotopic tracking of carnivore palaeoecology is a relatively new approach that yielded important results for the study of the non-analogue mammoth steppe biome. After describing the prerequisite to apply this approach and the possible complications, the main achievements will be described for extinct carnivore species such as scimitar-tooth cat Homotherium serum, cave lion Panthera spelaea, giant short-faced bear Arctodus simus, cave bear Ursus spelaeus s.l., as well as for ancient representatives of extant species such as brown bear Ursus arctos and wolf Canis lupus. Isotopic tracking showed that scimitar-tooth cats in Alaska were not specialist proboscidean predators but rather generalist consumers of other large herbivores. The majority of cave lions analysed so far were focused on reindeer, some individuals were specialized on cave bears, especially in contexts of competition with cave hyenas. Giant short-faced bears in Alaska were not pure herbivores and consumed meat from reindeer, muskoxen and possibly other predators, but may have still incorporated plant resources in their menu. In contrast, all cave bear populations studied so far for which a clear dietary reconstruction could be done were virtually pure herbivores, only a few cases are still unclear. Interestingly, brown bears used the opposite extreme of the dietary spectrum when competing with other large bears such as cave bears and giant short-faced bears, i.e. were more carnivorous in Europe and more herbivorous in Alaska. Finally wolves seem to have been outcompeted by hyenas but became dominant predators during the Lateglacial in Europe to the expense of the last cave lions. The results obtained through this approach are also relevant for improving conservation strategies of endangered extant large carnivores.

  11. Normal glucose metabolism of healthy carnivores mimics diabetes pathology of non-carnivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ThomasSchermerhorn

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Carnivores, such as the dolphin and the domestic cat, have numerous adaptations that befit consumption of diets with high protein and fat content, with little carbohydrate content. Consequently, nutrient metabolism in carnivorous species differs substantially from that of non-carnivores. Important metabolic pathways known to differ between carnivores and non-carnivores are implicated in the development of diabetes and insulin resistance in non-carnivores: 1. the hepatic glucokinase (GCK pathway is absent in healthy carnivores yet GCK deficiency may result in diabetes in rodents and humans, 2. healthy dolphins and cats are prone to periods of fasting hyperglycemia and exhibit insulin resistance, both of which are risk factors for diabetes in non-carnivores. Similarly, carnivores develop naturally-occurring diseases such as hemachromatosis, fatty liver, obesity and diabetes that have strong parallels with the same disorders in humans. Understanding how evolution, environment, diet and domestication may play a role with nutrient metabolism in the dolphin and cat may also be relevant to human diabetes.

  12. Myco-Heterophytes and Parasitic Plants in Food Chains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hershey, David R.

    1999-01-01

    Advocates including plants at several trophic levels when studying food chains. Presents background information on parasitic plants, myco-heterophytes (saprophytes), and carnivorous plants. Contains 20 references. (WRM)

  13. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farris, Zach J.; Golden, Christopher D.; Karpanty, Sarah; Murphy, Asia; Stauffer, Dean; Ratelolahy, Felix; Andrianjakarivelo, Vonjy; Holmes, Christopher M.; Kelly, Marcella J.

    2015-01-01

    The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore conservation worldwide. Utilizing photographic, line-transect, and habitat sampling, as well as landscape analyses and village-based bushmeat hunting surveys, we provide the first investigation of how multiple forms of habitat degradation (fragmentation, exotic carnivores, human encroachment, and hunting) affect carnivore occupancy across Madagascar’s largest protected area: the Masoala-Makira landscape. We found that as degradation increased, native carnivore occupancy and encounter rates decreased while exotic carnivore occupancy and encounter rates increased. Feral cats (Felis species) and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) had higher occupancy than half of the native carnivore species across Madagascar’s largest protected landscape. Bird and small mammal encounter rates were negatively associated with exotic carnivore occupancy, but positively associated with the occupancy of four native carnivore species. Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana) occupancy was constrained by the presence of exotic feral cats and exotic small Indian civet (Viverricula indica). Hunting was intense across the four study sites where hunting was studied, with the highest rates for the small Indian civet (x¯ = 90 individuals consumed/year), the ring-tailed vontsira (Galidia elegans) (x¯ = 58 consumed/year), and the fosa (Cryptoprocta ferox) (x¯ = 31 consumed/year). Our modeling results suggest hunters target intact forest where carnivore occupancy, abundance, and species richness, are

  14. The acclimation of carnivorous round-leaved sundew (Drosera rotundifolia L.) to solar radiation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tkalec, Mirta; Doboš, Marko; Babić, Marija; Jurak, Edita

    2015-01-01

    Round-leaved sundew (Drosera rotundifolia L.) is a carnivorous plant which inhabits nutrient-poor, moist, and sun-exposed areas such as peat bogs and sandpits. These habitats are threatened by succession which could lead to substantial shading of sundews. Nevertheless, D. rotundifolia can also gr

  15. Patterns of Livestock Predation by Carnivores: Human-Wildlife Conflict in Northwest Yunnan, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xueyou; Buzzard, Paul; Chen, Yongchun; Jiang, Xuelong

    2013-12-01

    Alleviating human-carnivore conflict is central to large carnivore conservation and is often of economic importance, where people coexist with carnivores. In this article, we report on the patterns of predation and economic losses from wild carnivores preying on livestock in three villages of northern Baima Xueshan Nature Reserve, northwest Yunnan during a 2-year period between January 2010 and December 2011. We analyzed claims from 149 households that 258 head of livestock were predated. Wolves ( Canis lupus) were responsible for 79.1 % of livestock predation; Asiatic black bears ( Selenarctos thibetanus) and dholes ( Cuon alpinus) were the other predators responsible. Predation frequency varied between livestock species. The majority of livestock killed were yak-cattle hybrids or dzo (40.3 %). Wolves killed fewer cattle than expected, and more donkeys and horses than expected. Wolves and bears killed more adult female and fewer adult male livestock than expected. Intensified predation in wet season coincided with livestock being left to graze unattended in alpine meadows far away from villages. On average, carnivore attacks claimed 2.1 % of range stock annually. This predation represented an economic loss of 17 % (SD = 14 %) of the annual household income. Despite this loss and a perceived increase in carnivore conflict, a majority of the herders (66 %) still supported the reserve. This support is primarily due to the benefits from the collection of nontimber resources such as mushrooms and medicinal plants. Our study also suggested that improvement of husbandry techniques and facilities will reduce conflicts and contribute to improved conservation of these threatened predators.

  16. Within-population isotopic niche variability in savanna mammals: disparity between carnivores and herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daryl eCodron

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Large mammal ecosystems have relatively simple food webs, usually comprising three – and sometimes only two – trophic links. Since many syntopic species from the same trophic level therefore share resources, dietary niche partitioning features prominently within these systems. In African and other subtropical savannas, stable carbon isotopes readily distinguish between herbivore species for which foliage and other parts of dicot plants (13C-depleted C3 vegetation are the primary resource (browsers and those for which grasses (13C-enriched C4 vegetation are staples (grazers. Similarly, carbon isotopes distinguish between carnivore diets that may be richer in either browser, grazer, or intermediate-feeding prey. Here, we investigate levels of carbon and nitrogen isotopic niche variation and niche partitioning within populations (or species of carnivores and herbivores from South African savannas. We emphasize predictable differences in within-population trends across trophic levels: we expect that herbivore populations, which require more foraging effort due to higher intake requirements, are far less likely to display within-population resource partitioning than carnivore populations. Our results reveal generally narrower isotopic niche breadths in herbivore than carnivore populations, but more importantly we find lower levels of isotopic differentiation across individuals within herbivore species. While these results offer some support for our general hypothesis, the current paucity of isotopic data for African carnivores limits our ability to test the complete set of predictions arising from our hypothesis. Nevertheless, given the different ecological and ecophysiological constraints to foraging behaviour within each trophic level, comparisons across carnivores and herbivores, which are possible within such simplified foodwebs, make these systems ideal for developing a process-based understanding of conditions underlying the evolution of

  17. Global priorities for national carnivore conservation under land use change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Minin, Enrico; Slotow, Rob; Hunter, Luke T B; Montesino Pouzols, Federico; Toivonen, Tuuli; Verburg, Peter H; Leader-Williams, Nigel; Petracca, Lisanne; Moilanen, Atte

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian carnivores have suffered the biggest range contraction among all biodiversity and are particularly vulnerable to habitat loss and fragmentation. Therefore, we identified priority areas for the conservation of mammalian carnivores, while accounting for species-specific requirements for connectivity and expected agricultural and urban expansion. While prioritizing for carnivores only, we were also able to test their effectiveness as surrogates for 23,110 species of amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles and 867 terrestrial ecoregions. We then assessed the risks to carnivore conservation within each country that makes a contribution to global carnivore conservation. We found that land use change will potentially lead to important range losses, particularly amongst already threatened carnivore species. In addition, the 17% of land targeted for protection under the Aichi Target 11 was found to be inadequate to conserve carnivores under expected land use change. Our results also highlight that land use change will decrease the effectiveness of carnivores to protect other threatened species, especially threatened amphibians. In addition, the risk of human-carnivore conflict is potentially high in countries where we identified spatial priorities for their conservation. As meeting the global biodiversity target will be inadequate for carnivore protection, innovative interventions are needed to conserve carnivores outside protected areas to compliment any proposed expansion of the protected area network. PMID:27034197

  18. Lakes, delta and volcanism at the Martian dichotomy. The case of Nepenthes Mensae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Pablo, M. A.; Pacifici, A.

    Martian dichotomy. The case of Nepenthes Mensae. M.A. de Pablo (1,2) and A. Pacifici (2) (1) Área de Geología. ESCET. Universidad Rey Juan Carlos. Móstoles, Madrid. Spain. (miguelangel.depablo@urjc.es), (2) International Research School of Planetary Sciences. Universitá d'Annunzio. Viale Pindaro, 42. Pescara, Italy. Martian dichotomy is marked by an important topographic step and a clear lineal orientation, especially at the western hemisphere. Nepenthes Mensae occur in one of these regions where these characteristics are clearly visible. Origin, tectonics and hydrological implications of the dichotomy were widely discussed by several authors. However, observation of HRSC, THEMIS Visible and MOC narrow angle images of Martian dichotomy on Nepenthes Mensae has revealed the existence of an interesting site (centred at 121.43E, 2.16N) where tectonic, volcanic, sedimentary and fluvial features are related and could be indicative of the complex geologic history of the Martian dichotomy, almost in this region. This site is characterized by an important topographic scarp between highlands and lowlands marked by a lineal orientation SE-NW. A small elongated volcanic edifice and some linear narrow reliefs, that we interpret as dikes highlighted by erosive processes, show same orientation. This volcano, 8 kilometers long, 4 kilometers wide and about 500 meters high, lies in a depression bordering the dichotomy. Partially covering the volcanic edifice there are sedimentary materials forming delta features. They represent the termination of one of channels coming from Martian highlands. The most recent delta seems to be a Gilbert-type (about 3.5 kilometers extended and 350 meters thick). However, our coarse estimations of volume of materials of this delta show that other previous important fluvial events should happen in order to erode its channel. The existence of two different overlapping delta funs in this place could be indicative of these previous episodes. Finally

  19. The Carnivores of the Northeastern Badia, Jordan

    OpenAIRE

    BUNAIAN, Fayez

    2001-01-01

    The presence of 8 carnivores representing 3 families (Canidae, Felidae and Hyaenidae) in the northeastern Badia was con-firmed by trapping and spotlighting. The family Canidae is represented by 4 species: Canis aureus syriaca, Canis lupus arabs, Vulpes vulpes and Vulpes rueppelli. Three felines, Caracal caracal schmitzi, Felis margarita and Felis sylvestris tristrami, were spotlighted. Remains of recently killed Hyaena hyaena syriacawere recovered. Major threats affecting the population of d...

  20. CARNIVORE: A Disruption-Tolerant System for Studying Wildlife

    OpenAIRE

    Matthew Rutishauser; Vladislav Petkov; Jay Boice; Katia Obraczka; Patrick Mantey; Williams, Terrie M; Christopher C Wilmers

    2011-01-01

    We present CARNIVORE, a system for in situ, unobtrusive monitoring of cryptic, difficult-to-catch/observe wildlife in their natural habitat. CARNIVORE is a network of mobile and static nodes with sensing, processing, storage, and wireless communication capabilities. CARNIVORE's compact, low-power, mobile animal-borne nodes collect sensor data and transmit it to static nodes, which then relay it to the Internet. Depending on the wildlife being studied, the network can be quite sparse and ther...

  1. Human behaviour can trigger large carnivore attacks in developed countries

    OpenAIRE

    Vincenzo Penteriani; María del Mar Delgado; Francesco Pinchera; Javier Naves; Alberto Fernández-Gil; Ilpo Kojola; Sauli Härkönen; Harri Norberg; Jens Frank; José María Fedriani; Veronica Sahlén; Ole-Gunnar Støen; Swenson, Jon E; Petter Wabakken; Mario Pellegrini

    2016-01-01

    The media and scientific literature are increasingly reporting an escalation of large carnivore attacks on humans in North America and Europe. Although rare compared to human fatalities by other wildlife, the media often overplay large carnivore attacks on humans, causing increased fear and negative attitudes towards coexisting with and conserving these species. Although large carnivore populations are generally increasing in developed countries, increased numbers are not solely responsible f...

  2. Frugivory and spatial patterns of seed deposition by carnivorous mammals in anthropogenic landscapes: a multi-scale approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José V López-Bao

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Knowledge about how frugivory and seed deposition are spatially distributed is valuable to understand the role of dispersers on the structure and dynamics of plant populations. This may be particularly important within anthropogenic areas, where either the patchy distribution of wild plants or the presence of cultivated fleshy-fruits may influence plant-disperser interactions. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated frugivory and spatial patterns of seed deposition by carnivorous mammals in anthropogenic landscapes considering two spatial scales: 'landscape' (∼10 km(2 and 'habitat type' (∼1-2 km(2. We sampled carnivore faeces and plant abundance at three contrasting habitats (chestnut woods, mosaics and scrublands, each replicated within three different landscapes. Sixty-five percent of faeces collected (n = 1077 contained seeds, among which wild and cultivated seeds appeared in similar proportions (58% and 53% despite that cultivated fruiting plants were much less abundant. Seed deposition was spatially structured among both spatial scales being different between fruit types. Whereas the most important source of spatial variation in deposition of wild seeds was the landscape scale, it was the habitat scale for cultivated seeds. At the habitat scale, seeds of wild species were mostly deposited within mosaics while seeds of cultivated species were within chestnut woods and scrublands. Spatial concordance between seed deposition and plant abundance was found only for wild species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Spatial patterns of seed deposition by carnivores differed between fruit types and seemed to be modulated by the fleshy-fruited plant assemblages and the behaviour of dispersers. Our results suggest that a strong preference for cultivated fruits by carnivores may influence their spatial foraging behaviour and lower their dispersal services to wild species. However, the high amount of seeds removed within and between

  3. Enzymatic activities in traps of four aquatic species of the carnivorous genus Utricularia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sirová, D.; Adamec, Lubomír; Vrba, Jaroslav

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 159, - (2003), s. 669-675. ISSN 0028-646X R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6017202; GA AV ČR KSK6005114 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6017912; CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * extracellular enzymatic activity * trap fluid pH Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.118, year: 2003

  4. Strategy of nitrogen acquisition and utilization by carnivorous Dionaea muscipula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kruse, Jörg; Gao, Peng; Honsel, Anne; Kreuzwieser, Jürgen; Burzlaff, Tim; Alfarraj, Saleh; Hedrich, Rainer; Rennenberg, Heinz

    2014-03-01

    Plant carnivory represents an exceptional means to acquire N. Snap traps of Dionaea muscipula serve two functions, and provide both N and photosynthate. Using (13)C/(15)N-labelled insect powder, we performed feeding experiments with Dionaea plants that differed in physiological state and N status (spring vs. autumn plants). We measured the effects of (15)N uptake on light-saturated photosynthesis (A(max)), dark respiration (R(D)) and growth. Depending on N status, insect capture briefly altered the dynamics of R(D)/A(max), reflecting high energy demand during insect digestion and nutrient uptake, followed by enhanced photosynthesis and growth. Organic N acquired from insect prey was immediately redistributed, in order to support swift renewal of traps and thereby enhance probability of prey capture. Respiratory costs associated with permanent maintenance of the photosynthetic machinery were thereby minimized. Dionaea's strategy of N utilization is commensurate with the random capture of large prey, occasionally transferring a high load of organic nutrients to the plant. Our results suggest that physiological adaptations to unpredictable resource availability are essential for Dionaea's success with regards to a carnivorous life style. PMID:24141381

  5. Firing and Resetting Characteristics of Carnivorous Utricularia reflexa Traps: Physiological or only Physical Regulation of Trap Triggering?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 52, č. 2 (2012), 281-290. ISSN 0079-2047 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * water flow * ether Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.435, year: 2012

  6. Responses of mammal dispersers to fruit availability: Rowan ( Sorbus aucuparia) and carnivores in mountain habitats of northern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guitián, José; Munilla, Ignacio

    2010-03-01

    Despite the well known fact that carnivore mammals are important fruit consumers and legitimate seed dispersers in temperate habitats, little is known about their quantitative responses to fruit availability. Here we show the results of two studies conducted at two different temporal and spatial scales, that were intended to assess the response of pine martens ( Martes martes) and red foxes ( Vulpes vulpes) to variations in the supply of rowan ( Sorbus aucuparia) fruits in the Cantabrian Range (northern Iberia). First, we studied the association between fruit availability and the importance of rowan fruit in the diet of carnivores during a period of 11 consecutive years. This was accomplished by comparing fruit-crop size in 54 trees and the analysis of faecal contents in a sample of 863 faeces. Secondly, we assessed the consumption of fruits by these two species underneath the canopy of 20 rowan trees along 10 consecutive days. In the first study, the diet of martens and foxes consistently tracked interannual variations in rowan fruit availability, despite large fluctuations in fruit yield that included three mast years of heavy rowanberry crops and three non-fruiting years. For both carnivores total crop size was correlated with the frequency of occurrence and the proportion of rowan by volume in faeces. The second study suggested that carnivores feeding on fallen fruit tended to visit the trees that exhibited a higher density of fruits under the canopy. Thus, carnivores apparently choose to feed on high-density patches of fruit, which in turn were located underneath the canopy of the trees that produced the larger crops. Our results stress the need to pay proper attention to the role of carnivores as seed dispersers, in order to disentangle the evolutionary and ecological outcomes of plant-animal interactions in mixed-dispersed plants.

  7. Radio telemetry equipment and applications for carnivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuller, Mark R.; Fuller, Todd K.

    2012-01-01

    Radio-telemetry was not included in the first comprehensive manual of wildlife research techniques (Mosby 1960) because the first published papers were about physiological wildlife telemetry (LeMunyan et al. 1959) and because research using telemetry in field ecology was just being initiated (Marshall et al. 1962; Cochran and Lord 1963). Among the first uses of telemetry to study wildlife, however, was a study of carnivores (Craighead et al. 1963), and telemetry has become a common method for studying numerous topics of carnivore biology. Our goals for this chapter are to provide basic information about radio-telemetry equipment and procedures. Although we provide many references to studies using telemetry equipment and methods, we recommend Kenward's (2001) comprehensive book, A manual of wildlife radio tagging for persons who are unfamiliar with radio-telemetry, Fuller et al. (2005), and Tomkiewicz et al. (2010). Compendia of uses of radio-telemetry in animal research appear regularly as chapters in manuals (Cochran 1980; Samuel and Fuller 1994), in books about equipment, field procedures, study design, and applications (Amlaner and Macdonald 1980; Anderka 1987; Amlaner 1989; White and Garrott 1990; Priede and Swift 1992; Kenward 2001; Millspaugh and Marzluff 2001; Mech and Barber 2002), and in reviews highlighting new developments (Cooke et al. 2004; Rutz and Hays 2009; Cagnacci et al. 2010). Some animal telemetry products and techniques have remained almost unchanged for years, but new technologies and approaches emerge and replace previously available equipment at an increasing pace. Here, we emphasize recent studies for which telemetry was used with carnivores.

  8. Adhesion force measurements on the two wax layers of the waxy zone in Nepenthes alata pitchers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorb, Elena V; Purtov, Julia; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2014-01-01

    The wax coverage of the waxy zone in Nepenthes alata pitchers consists of two clearly distinguishable layers, designated the upper and lower wax layers. Since these layers were reported to reduce insect attachment, they were considered to have anti-adhesive properties. However, no reliable adhesion tests have been performed with these wax layers. In this study, pull-off force measurements were carried out on both wax layers of the N. alata pitcher and on two reference polymer surfaces using deformable polydimethylsiloxane half-spheres as probes. To explain the results obtained, roughness measurements were performed on test surfaces. Micro-morphology of both surface samples and probes tested was examined before and after experiments. Pull-off forces measured on the upper wax layer were the lowest among surfaces tested. Here, contamination of probes by wax crystals detached from the pitcher surface was found. This suggests that low insect attachment on the upper wax layer is caused primarily by the breaking off of wax crystals from the upper wax layer, which acts as a separation layer between the insect pad and the pitcher surface. High adhesion forces obtained on the lower wax layer are explained by the high deformability of probes and the particular roughness of the substrate. PMID:24889352

  9. The Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koufos, G. D.

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece includes a great number of taxa, described in numerous articles since the first decades of the 19th Century. The present article is a revision of all these taxa, providing information about their history, localities, age, as well as their stratigraphic distribution and palaeoenvironment. The Early/Middle Miocene carnivore record of Greece is poor as the available fossiliferous sites and material are rare. However, the Late Miocene one is quite rich, including numerous taxa. The Miocene localities with carnivores and their age are given in a stratigraphic table covering the European Mammal zones from MN 4 to MN 13. The type locality, holotype, and some historical and morphological remarks are given for each taxon. Several carnivore taxa were erected from Greek material and new photos of their holotypes are given. The stratigraphic distribution of the Greek carnivore taxa indicates that they are covering the time span from ~19.0-5.3Ma. The majority of the Miocene taxa (Adcrocuta, Hyaenictitherium, Plioviverrops, Protictitherium, Ictitherium, Indarctos, Dinocrocuta, Promephitis disappeared at the end of Miocene. The composition of the Early/Middle Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece includes mainly viverrids (Lophocyon, Euboictis, while the hyaenids, percrocutids, felids and mustelids are very few. On the contrary the Late Miocene assemblage is richer, including more subfamilies and species; the hyaenids and mustelids dominate, while the viverrids are absent. The Late Miocene carnivore guild structure is similar to that of the modern Serengeti, indicating a relatively open, savannah-like environment.

    La asociación de carnívoros miocenos de Grecia incluye un gran número de taxones, descritos en numerosos artículos desde las primeras décadas del siglo XIX. El presente artículo supone un esfuerzo de síntesis de todos estos taxones, suministrando información sobre su

  10. Balancing macronutrient intake in a mammalian carnivore: disentangling the influences of flavour and nutrition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hewson-Hughes, Adrian K; Colyer, Alison; Simpson, Stephen J; Raubenheimer, David

    2016-06-01

    There is a large body of research demonstrating that macronutrient balancing is a primary driver of foraging in herbivores and omnivores, and more recently, it has been shown to occur in carnivores. However, the extent to which macronutrient selection in carnivores may be influenced by organoleptic properties (e.g. flavour/aroma) remains unknown. Here, we explore the roles of nutritional and hedonic factors in food choice and macronutrient balancing in a mammalian carnivore, the domestic cat. Using the geometric framework, we determined the amounts and ratio of protein and fat intake in cats allowed to select from combinations of three foods that varied in protein : fat (P : F) composition (approx. 10 : 90, 40 : 60 and 70 : 30 on a per cent energy basis) to which flavours of different 'attractiveness' (fish, rabbit and orange) were added. In two studies, in which animal and plant protein sources were used, respectively, the ratio and amounts of protein and fat intake were very consistent across all groups regardless of flavour combination, indicating regulation of both protein and fat intake. Our results suggest that macronutrient balancing rather than hedonistic rewards based on organoleptic properties of food is a primary driver of longer-term food selection and intake in domestic cats. PMID:27429768

  11. Human Perceptions Mirror Realities of Carnivore Attack Risk for Livestock: Implications for Mitigating Human-Carnivore Conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jennifer R B; Jhala, Yadvendradev V; Schmitz, Oswald J

    2016-01-01

    Human-carnivore conflict is challenging to quantify because it is shaped by both the realities and people's perceptions of carnivore threats. Whether perceptions align with realities can have implications for conflict mitigation: misalignments can lead to heightened and indiscriminant persecution of carnivores whereas alignments can offer deeper insights into human-carnivore interactions. We applied a landscape-scale spatial analysis of livestock killed by tigers and leopards in India to model and map observed attack risk, and surveyed owners of livestock killed by tigers and leopards for their rankings of threats across habitats to map perceived attack risk. Observed tiger risk to livestock was greatest near dense forests and at moderate distances from human activity while leopard risk was greatest near open vegetation. People accurately perceived spatial differences between tiger and leopard hunting patterns, expected greater threat in areas with high values of observed risk for both carnivores. Owners' perception of threats largely did not depend on environmental conditions surrounding their village (spatial location, dominant land-use or observed carnivore risk). Surveys revealed that owners who previously lost livestock to carnivores used more livestock protection methods than those who had no prior losses, and that owners who had recently lost livestock for the first time expressed greater interest in changing their protection methods than those who experienced prior losses. Our findings suggest that in systems where realities and perceptions of carnivore risk align, conservation programs and policies can optimize conservation outcomes by (1) improving the effectiveness of livestock protection methods and (2) working with owners who have recently lost livestock and are most willing to invest effort in adapting protection strategies to mitigate human-carnivore conflict. PMID:27617831

  12. The large terrestrial carnivore guild in Quaternary Southeast Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louys, Julien

    2014-07-01

    Much of Southeast Asia's large terrestrial carnivores appeared, evolved and disappeared from the region for reasons that remain poorly understood. Two of the most significant extinctions are represented by the charismatic Pleistocene megacarnivores Pachycrocuta and Pliocrocuta. Southeast Asia hosts the last populations of these species globally. Their persistence in southern China until the late Pleistocene suggests their extinction was not tied to that of the machairodont cats, which like the rest of the world became extinct sometime in the early Pleistocene in this region. Instead the disappearance of the hyenids is probably related to climate change and deteriorating environmental conditions. There is some evidence that the wolf and domesticated dog first appeared in Southeast Asia, although confirmation of this awaits more detailed fossil records. There does not appear to be a large carnivore guild turnover of the same scale or time as recorded in Europe and Africa, although an extinction event in the late Pleistocene is provisionally recorded. Environmental changes and fluctuating sea levels have had a unique impact on the region's large carnivore guild. Several large carnivores from Java show unique genetic and morphological variations, and this could potentially be related to the connection between Java and the Indochinese mainland sometime during the middle Pleistocene. The effects of islands on the large carnivores are complicated and at times contradictory. Nevertheless, periods of isolation of large carnivores on Java, Sumatra and Borneo from the continent had impacts on both extinctions and speciations, with at least one well documented endemic large carnivore evolving in Sundaland (Sunda clouded leopard). Hunting and deforestation ongoing since the mid- to late Holocene means that many extant members of the large carnivore guild are at high risk of extinction.

  13. Canine Evolution in Sabretoothed Carnivores: Natural Selection or Sexual Selection?

    OpenAIRE

    Marcela Randau; Chris Carbone; Turvey, Samuel T.

    2013-01-01

    The remarkable elongated upper canines of extinct sabretoothed carnivorous mammals have been the subject of considerable speculation on their adaptive function, but the absence of living analogues prevents any direct inference about their evolution. We analysed scaling relationships of the upper canines of 20 sabretoothed feliform carnivores (Nimravidae, Barbourofelidae, Machairodontinae), representing both dirk-toothed and scimitar-toothed sabretooth ecomorphs, and 33 non-sabretoothed felids...

  14. Gut transport characteristics in herbivorous and carnivorous serrasalmid fish from ion-poor Rio Negro water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelster, Bernd; Wood, Chris M; Speers-Roesch, Ben; Driedzic, William R; Almeida-Val, Vera; Val, Adalberto

    2015-02-01

    species. Thus, metabolic activity of gut tissue did not significantly influence the net ammonia transfer. Due to the much higher gut to fork length ratio, the overall transport capacity of the gut of the herbivorous Pacu by far exceeded the transport capacity of their carnivorous and omnivorous relatives, thus compensating for the lower digestibility and the low Na(+), Cl(-), and N-content of the plant diet. Accordingly, in order to cope with the more difficult digestible plant material and the very low nitrogen content of plants, herbivorous fish have not evolved more effective area-specific transport capacities, but rather have increased the length of the gut. PMID:25528145

  15. CARNIVORE: A Disruption-Tolerant System for Studying Wildlife

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Williams TerrieM

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available We present CARNIVORE, a system for in situ, unobtrusive monitoring of cryptic, difficult-to-catch/observe wildlife in their natural habitat. CARNIVORE is a network of mobile and static nodes with sensing, processing, storage, and wireless communication capabilities. CARNIVORE's compact, low-power, mobile animal-borne nodes collect sensor data and transmit it to static nodes, which then relay it to the Internet. Depending on the wildlife being studied, the network can be quite sparse and therefore disconnected frequently for arbitrarily long periods of time. To support "disconnected operation", CARNIVORE uses an "opportunistic routing" approach taking advantage of every encounter between nodes (mobile-to-mobile and mobile-to-static to propagate data. With a lifespan of 50–100 days, a CARNIVORE mobile node, outfitted on a collar, collects and transmits 1 GB of data compared to 450 kB of data from comparable commercially available wildlife collars. Each collar records 3-axis accelerometer and GPS data to infer animal behavior and energy consumption.Testing in both laboratory and free-range settings with domestic dogs shows that galloping and trotting behavior can be identified. Data collected from first deployments on mountain lions (Puma concolor near Santa Cruz, CA, USA show that the system is a viable and useful tool for wildlife research.

  16. Serosurvey of small carnivores in the Bolivian Chaco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiorello, Christine V; Noss, Andrew J; Deem, Sharon L; Maffei, Leonardo; Dubovi, Edward J

    2007-07-01

    Five species of Bolivian carnivores, including nine Geoffroy's cats (Oncifelis geoffroyi), ten ocelots (Leopardus pardalis), one jaguarundi (Herpailurus yaguarondi), nine pampas foxes (Pseudalopex gymnocercus), and five crab-eating foxes (Cerdocyon thous) were sampled between March 2001 and April 2005 and tested for antibodies to common pathogens of domestic carnivores. Carnivores were trapped in three areas: a village, the region between human settlements and a protected area, and within Kaa-Iya National Park, Bolivia. Antibodies to canine distemper virus were detected in ocelots and pampas foxes. Antibodies to canine parvovirus were detected in pampas foxes and crab-eating foxes. Geoffroy's cats and all of the ocelots tested positive for antibodies to feline calicivirus (FCV), while fewer than half of Geoffroy's cats and no ocelots had antibodies to feline panleukopenia (FPV). These results confirm that these species of Bolivian carnivores are not naïve to common pathogens of domestic carnivores, and seropositive animals were found in villages as well as in the national park. PMID:17699100

  17. 'Insect aquaplaning' on a superhydrophilic hairy surface: how Heliamphora nutans Benth. pitcher plants capture prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Scharmann, Mathias; Skepper, Jeremy; Federle, Walter

    2013-02-22

    Trichomes are a common feature of plants and perform important and diverse functions. Here, we show that the inward-pointing hairs on the inner wall of insect-trapping Heliamphora nutans pitchers are highly wettable, causing water droplets to spread rapidly across the surface. Wetting strongly enhanced the slipperiness and increased the capture rate for ants from 29 to 88 per cent. Force measurements and tarsal ablation experiments revealed that wetting affected the insects' adhesive pads but not the claws, similar to the 'aquaplaning' mechanism of (unrelated) Asian Nepenthes pitcher plants. The inward-pointing trichomes provided much higher traction when insects were pulled outwards. The wetness-dependent capture mechanisms of H. nutans and Nepenthes pitchers present a striking case of functional convergence, whereas the use of wettable trichomes constitutes a previously unknown mechanism to make plant surfaces slippery. PMID:23256197

  18. Approaches, field considerations and problems associated with radio tracking carnivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.

    1979-01-01

    The adaptation of radio tracking to ecological studies was a major technological advance affecting field investigations of animal movements and behavior. Carnivores have been the recipients of much attention with this new technology and study approaches have varied from simple to complex. Equipment performance has much improved over the years, but users still face many difficulties. The beginning of all radio tracking studies should be a precise definition of objectives. Study objectives dictate type of gear required and field procedures. Field conditions affect equipment performance and investigator ability to gather data. Radio tracking carnivores is demanding and generally requires greater time than anticipated. Problems should be expected and planned for in study design. Radio tracking can be an asset in carnivore studies but caution is needed in its application.

  19. Parasites diversity in carnivorous animals in the territory of Dnipropetrovsk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    О. О. Boyko

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available In Dnipropetrovsk sity (Ukraine, Dnipropetrovsk region in carnivorous animals 10 species of parasites (helminths and coccidia were found: Uncinaria sp., Ancylostoma sp., Dictyocaulus immitis (Nematoda, Strongylata, Strongyloides stercoralis (Nematoda, Rhabditata, Spirocerca lupi (Nematoda, Spirurata, Toxocara canis (Nematoda, Ascaridata, Trichuris vulpis (Nematoda, Trichurata, Dipylidium caninum (Cestoda, Hymenolepidata, Cystoisospora sp. and Toxoplasma gondii (Sporozoa, Coccidia. In soil S. stercoralisand Uncinaria sp. weredominanted. In most carnivorous animals registered in L. Globa park and T. Shevchenko park the S. stercoralisand Uncinaria sp., Cystoisosporasp. and T. gondii were found.

  20. New hosts and localities for helminths of carnivores in Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moleón, María Soledad; Kinsella, John Mike; Moreno, Pablo Gastón; Ferreyra, Hebe Del Valle; Pereira, Javier; Pía, Mónica; Beldomenico, Pablo Martín

    2015-01-01

    A total of 111 samples (43 faeces and 79 gastrointestinal tracts) of 14 wild carnivore species from 12 Argentine provinces were analyzed. Helminth eggs were identified in 73% of the faecal samples and adult worms were recovered from 81% of the gastrointestinal tracts. We found 19 helminth species. Among the most frequent findings were parasites of domestic carnivores, namely Toxocara canis, Toxocara cati, Toxascaris leonina, Ancylostoma caninum, Ancylostoma tubaeforme and Uncinaria stenocephala. In addition, new hosts are reported for 6 nematode species and 5 helminth species are recorded for the first time in Argentina: Aonchotheca putorii, Molineus brachiurus, Cyathospirura chevreuxi, Physaloptera praeputialis and Oncicola martini. PMID:26701468

  1. Beneficial or not? Decoding carnivore roles in plant protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recent advances in compound specific isotopic ratio analysis (CSIRA) have allowed researchers to measure trophic fractionation of 15N in specific amino acids, namely glutamic acid and phenylalanine. These amino acids have proven useful in food web studies because of the wide and consistent disparity...

  2. Photosynthesis and dark respiration of leaves of terrestrial carnivorous plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hájek, Tomáš; Adamec, Lubomír

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 65, č. 1 (2010), s. 69-74. ISSN 0006-3088 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : CO2 gasometry * light photosynthetic curves * costs of carnivory Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.609, year: 2010

  3. Mineral cost of carnivory in aquatic carnivorous plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 205, č. 9 (2010), s. 618-621. ISSN 0367-2530 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Aldrovanda vesiculosa * Utricularia spp., * investment in carnivory Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.657, year: 2010

  4. Large carnivores in the Carpathian Mountains: status and conservation problems

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Okarma, H.; Dovchanych, Y.; Findo, S.; Ionescu, O.; Koubek, Petr; Szemethy, L.

    2002-01-01

    Roč. 59, - (2002), s. 33-39. ISSN 0078-3250 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KSK6005114 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6093917 Keywords : carnivores * conservation * Carpathians Subject RIV: EG - Zoology

  5. Go big or go fish: morphological specializations in carnivorous bats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santana, Sharlene E; Cheung, Elena

    2016-05-11

    Specialized carnivory is relatively uncommon across mammals, and bats constitute one of the few groups in which this diet has evolved multiple times. While size and morphological adaptations for carnivory have been identified in other taxa, it is unclear what phenotypic traits characterize the relatively recent evolution of carnivory in bats. To address this gap, we apply geometric morphometric and phylogenetic comparative analyses to elucidate which characters are associated with ecological divergence of carnivorous bats from insectivorous ancestors, and if there is morphological convergence among independent origins of carnivory within bats, and with other carnivorous mammals. We find that carnivorous bats are larger and converged to occupy a subset of the insectivorous morphospace, characterized by skull shapes that enhance bite force at relatively wide gapes. Piscivorous bats are morphologically distinct, with cranial shapes that enable high bite force at narrow gapes, which is necessary for processing fish prey. All animal-eating species exhibit positive allometry in rostrum elongation with respect to skull size, which could allow larger bats to take relatively larger prey. The skull shapes of carnivorous bats share similarities with generalized carnivorans, but tend to be more suited for increased bite force production at the expense of gape, when compared with specialized carnivorans. PMID:27170718

  6. Parasites diversity in carnivorous animals in the territory of Dnipropetrovsk

    OpenAIRE

    О. О. Boyko; L. I. Faly; V. V. Brygadyrenko

    2011-01-01

    In Dnipropetrovsk sity (Ukraine, Dnipropetrovsk region) in carnivorous animals 10 species of parasites (helminths and coccidia) were found: Uncinaria sp., Ancylostoma sp., Dictyocaulus immitis (Nematoda, Strongylata), Strongyloides stercoralis (Nematoda, Rhabditata), Spirocerca lupi (Nematoda, Spirurata), Toxocara canis (Nematoda, Ascaridata), Trichuris vulpis (Nematoda, Trichurata), Dipylidium caninum (Cestoda, Hymenolepidata), Cystoisospora sp. and Toxoplasma gondii (Sporozoa, Coccidia). In...

  7. Small carnivores of Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple Tiger Reserve, Karnataka, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Honnavalli N. Kumara

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available During the present study in Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple Tiger Reserve (BRT, nine species of small carnivores viz., Jungle Cat Felis chaus, Rusty-spotted Cat Prionalilurus rubiginosus, Leopard Cat Prionailurus bengalensis, Small Indian Civet Viverricula indica, Asian Palm Civet Paradoxurus hermaphroditus, Striped-necked Mongoose Herpestes vitticollis, Ruddy Mongoose Herpestes smithii, Common Mongoose Herpestes edwardsii and Smooth-coated Otter Lutrogale perspicillata, were recorded using camera-trapping technique, transect walks, and night surveys. Vegetation type strongly influences the presence and abundance of each species. The most sightings of small carnivores occurred in dry deciduous forests. Among all the species, the Asian Palm Civet was the most abundant and was followed by the small Indian Civet. Compared to many other forests or regions in India, the sight records of the Rusty-spotted Cat were relatively higher in BRT. Although we were unable to use statistical methods to search for higher levels of interdependencies between forest types and small carnivore abundance, our study sheds light on patterns of small carnivore distribution in this unique habitat which bridges the Western Ghats and the Eastern Ghats.

  8. Selection for adaptation to dietary shifts: towards sustainable breeding of carnivorous fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard Le Boucher

    Full Text Available Genetic adaptation to dietary environments is a key process in the evolution of natural populations and is of great interest in animal breeding. In fish farming, the use of fish meal and fish oil has been widely challenged, leading to the rapidly increasing use of plant-based products in feed. However, high substitution rates impair fish health and growth in carnivorous species. We demonstrated that survival rate, mean body weight and biomass can be improved in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss after a single generation of selection for the ability to adapt to a totally plant-based diet (15.1%, 35.3% and 54.4%, respectively. Individual variability in the ability to adapt to major diet changes can be effectively used to promote fish welfare and a more sustainable aquaculture.

  9. ‘Insect aquaplaning’ on a superhydrophilic hairy surface: how Heliamphora nutans Benth. pitcher plants capture prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Ulrike; Scharmann, Mathias; Skepper, Jeremy; Federle, Walter

    2013-01-01

    Trichomes are a common feature of plants and perform important and diverse functions. Here, we show that the inward-pointing hairs on the inner wall of insect-trapping Heliamphora nutans pitchers are highly wettable, causing water droplets to spread rapidly across the surface. Wetting strongly enhanced the slipperiness and increased the capture rate for ants from 29 to 88 per cent. Force measurements and tarsal ablation experiments revealed that wetting affected the insects' adhesive pads but not the claws, similar to the ‘aquaplaning’ mechanism of (unrelated) Asian Nepenthes pitcher plants. The inward-pointing trichomes provided much higher traction when insects were pulled outwards. The wetness-dependent capture mechanisms of H. nutans and Nepenthes pitchers present a striking case of functional convergence, whereas the use of wettable trichomes constitutes a previously unknown mechanism to make plant surfaces slippery. PMID:23256197

  10. Stable isotopes in collagen and Late Quaternary carnivore palaeoecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocherens, Hervé

    2010-05-01

    Several taxa of large carnivores co-occurred during the late Pleistocene in the steppe-tundra ecosystem, such as wolf Canis lupus, cave lion Panthera leo spelaea, cave hyaena Crocuta crocuta spelaea, brown bear Ursus arctos and cave bear Ursus spelaeus and Ursus ingressus. This abundance of taxa belonging to the same guild raises questions about niche partitioning, especially in terms of dietary specialization and prey selection. Observations of the dietary ecology of the extant relatives of these late Pleistocene carnivores does not provide unambiguous answers as these populations live under very different environmental conditions where other potential prey species are present, but it appears that most of these modern large carnivores are relatively flexible in their prey selection. Palaeontological investigations dealing with faunal associations and activity marks on fossil bones also have their limitations, such as taphonomic biases (palimpsests rather than biological associations) and do not allow the quantification of consumption of various preys. In contrast, carbon and nitrogen isotopic signatures of bone collagen depend directly on those of the average diet. Since different potential prey species occurring in the steppe-tundra exhibit consistent isotopic differences for these chemical elements, it is possible to relate the carbon and nitrogen isotopic signatures measured in fossil carnivores with the preferential consumption of some prey species. Some amount of quantification can be provided using modified versions of mixing models developed for modern ecosystems. In addition, this isotopic approach is individual-based and it is therefore possible to investigate intra- and inter-population differences in prey selection, as well as possible chronological trends and differences linked to genetic differences by combining isotopic and ancient DNA studies on the same material. The isotopic approach has already shown that among the tested large carnivores, cave

  11. Carnivore activity in the Sima de los Huesos (Atapuerca, Spain) hominin sample

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia-Téllez, Ana

    2014-08-01

    The Sima de los Huesos (SH) site is the largest accumulation of human remains from the Middle Pleistocene known to date. Studies in the last two decades have proposed different hypotheses to explain carnivore activity in the SH human sample. This study provides new data in order to test these different interpretations, and therefore to understand the role of the carnivores in site formation at SH. Carnivores are usually not the origin of large accumulations of hominin fossils in the Eurasian record. The results show that marks of carnivore activity in the SH sample appear very infrequently, which we interpret as indicating that carnivore activity was very sporadic at the site. This is in stark contrast with previous studies. The comparison of bone modification patterns at SH to actualistic carnivore data allows us to suggest that bears were likely to have been the carnivore responsible for the modification observed on both human and bear fossils.

  12. A Description of Sub-Equatorial Volcanic Structures Consistent with Sub-Ice Magmatism East of Nepenthes Mensae, Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caprarelli, G.; de Pablo Hernandez, M. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Martian region located immediately north of the dichotomy scarp, between latitudes 120°E and 135°E, is covered by fretted terrains, characterised by the presence of knobs and mesas formed by eroded and reworked material of highlands provenance, and the smoother terrains between them [1]. Topographic depressions of oblong shape, generally parallel to the scarp, of rough and chaotic appearance, are also observed. The high resolution (~ 6 m/pixel, [2]) Context Camera (CTX) on board Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) makes it possible to examine the morphologies of these topographic depressions in great detail, unveiling their complex geological histories. Here we expand on our earlier work in the adjacent Nepenthes Mensae region [3] and present the results of our observations of morphologies of likely igneous origin. We identified a variety of shapes consistent with magmatic structures and constructs: dikes, collapsed lava tubes, and lava flows are observable in the smoother terrains. Most of the elevated structures in the areas are strongly eroded knobs and mesas covered by dust and debris. In some cases however, the morphological characteristics of 2-10 km-size structures are clear and sharp, which allowed us to identify features consistent with sub-ice volcanic constructs, such as tuyas and tindars [4]. Geological reconstructions involving magma-ice interaction are supported by the presence of lobate aprons around knobs and mesas, and of scalloped ejecta surrounding complex impact craters, suggesting the existence of ice both underground and on the surface of these low elevation areas at the time of formation of these constructs. [1] Tanaka et al. (2005) Geologic Map of the Northern Plains of Mars. USGS SIM 2888. [2] Malin et al. (2007) Context Camera investigation on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. JGR 112, E05S04, 10.1029/2006JE002808. [3] dePablo and Caprarelli (2010) Possible subglacial volcanoes in Nepenthes Mensae, eastern hemisphere, Mars. LPSC

  13. Financial costs of large carnivore translocations--accounting for conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weise, Florian J; Stratford, Ken J; van Vuuren, Rudolf J

    2014-01-01

    Human-carnivore conflict continues to present a major conservation challenge around the world. Translocation of large carnivores is widely implemented but remains strongly debated, in part because of a lack of cost transparency. We report detailed translocation costs for three large carnivore species in Namibia and across different translocation scenarios. We consider the effect of various parameters and factors on costs and translocation success. Total translocation cost for 30 individuals in 22 events was $80,681 (US Dollars). Median translocation cost per individual was $2,393, and $2,669 per event. Median cost per cheetah was $2,760 (n = 23), and $2,108 per leopard (n = 6). One hyaena was translocated at a cost of $1,672. Tracking technology was the single biggest cost element (56%), followed by captive holding and feeding. Soft releases, prolonged captivity and orphaned individuals also increased case-specific costs. A substantial proportion (65.4%) of the total translocation cost was successfully recovered from public interest groups. Less than half the translocations were confirmed successes (44.4%, 3 unknown) with a strong species bias. Four leopards (66.7%) were successfully translocated but only eight of the 20 cheetahs (40.0%) with known outcome met these strict criteria. None of the five habituated cheetahs was translocated successfully, nor was the hyaena. We introduce the concept of Individual Conservation Cost (ICC) and define it as the cost of one successfully translocated individual adjusted by costs of unsuccessful events of the same species. The median ICC for cheetah was $6,898 and $3,140 for leopard. Translocations are costly, but we demonstrate that they are not inherently more expensive than other strategies currently employed in non-lethal carnivore conflict management. We conclude that translocation should be one available option for conserving large carnivores, but needs to be critically evaluated on a case-by-case basis. PMID

  14. Molecular, Biochemical, and Dietary Regulation Features of α-Amylase in a Carnivorous Crustacean, the Spiny Lobster Panulirus argus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martos-Sitcha, Juan Antonio; Perdomo-Morales, Rolando; Casuso, Antonio; Montero-Alejo, Vivian; García-Galano, Tsai; Martínez-Rodríguez, Gonzalo; Mancera, Juan Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Alpha-amylases are ubiquitously distributed throughout microbials, plants and animals. It is widely accepted that omnivorous crustaceans have higher α-amylase activity and number of isoforms than carnivorous, but contradictory results have been obtained in some species, and carnivorous crustaceans have been less studied. In addition, the physiological meaning of α-amylase polymorphism in crustaceans is not well understood. In this work we studied α-amylase in a carnivorous lobster at the gene, transcript, and protein levels. It was showed that α-amylase isoenzyme composition (i.e., phenotype) in lobster determines carbohydrate digestion efficiency. Most frequent α-amylase phenotype has the lowest digestion efficiency, suggesting this is a favoured trait. We revealed that gene and intron loss have occurred in lobster α-amylase, thus lobsters express a single 1830 bp cDNA encoding a highly conserved protein with 513 amino acids. This protein gives rise to two isoenzymes in some individuals by glycosylation but not by limited proteolysis. Only the glycosylated isoenzyme could be purified by chromatography, with biochemical features similar to other animal amylases. High carbohydrate content in diet down-regulates α-amylase gene expression in lobster. However, high α-amylase activity occurs in lobster gastric juice irrespective of diet and was proposed to function as an early sensor of the carbohydrate content of diet to regulate further gene expression. We concluded that gene/isoenzyme simplicity, post-translational modifications and low Km, coupled with a tight regulation of gene expression, have arose during evolution of α-amylase in the carnivorous lobster to control excessive carbohydrate digestion in the presence of an active α-amylase. PMID:27391425

  15. Evaporation-induced transition from Nepenthes pitcher-inspired slippery surfaces to lotus leaf-inspired superoleophobic surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Junping; Wu, Lei; Li, Bucheng; Li, Lingxiao; Seeger, Stefan; Wang, Aiqin

    2014-12-01

    The newly developed Nepenthes pitcher (NP)-inspired slippery surfaces, formed by immobilizing fluoroliquids on lotus leaf (LL)-inspired superoleophobic surfaces, are of great general interest, whereas there are many interesting phenomena and fundamental scientific issues remaining to be unveiled. Here we present our findings of the effects of evaporation of the fluoroliquid, an inevitable process in most cases, -induced transition from NP-inspired to LL-inspired surfaces on the wettability, transparency, and self-cleaning property of the surfaces. The transition is controlled by regulating the evaporation temperature of the model fluoroliquid, Krytox100. The evaporation of Krytox100 has great a influence on the wettability, transparency, and self-cleaning property. An intermediate "sticky" state is observed in the transition process. We believe that our findings in the transition process are helpful in understanding the similarities and differences between the NP-inspired and LL-inspired surfaces and in designing new bioinspired antiwetting surfaces and exploring their potential applications. PMID:25378097

  16. A preliminary report on carnivorous mammals from Pondaung fauna

    OpenAIRE

    Egi, Naoko; Tsubamoto, Takehisa

    2000-01-01

    Some carnivore materials have been discovered from the Pondaung Formatioin in central Myanmar recently. The materials are separable into at least two genera, both of which are hyaenodontid creodonts. One of them is a medium-sized proviverrine. Collected parts include a maxilla, lower molar fragments, and some postcranial fragments. It shows some distinctive dental characters such as small protocone lobe on P_4, anterolingually-placed protocone and posterolingually-placed metacone relative to ...

  17. Combined transcript and metabolite analysis reveals genes involved in spider mite induced volatile formation in cucumber plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mercke, P.; Kappers, I.F.; Verstappen, F.W.A.; Vorst, O.F.J.; Dicke, M.; Bouwmeester, H.J.

    2004-01-01

    Many plants have an indirect defense against herbivores by emitting volatiles that attract carnivorous enemies of the herbivores. In cucumber (Cucumis sativus) the production of carnivore attractants can be induced by herbivory or jasmonic acid spraying. From the leaves of cucumber plants with and w

  18. Canine evolution in sabretoothed carnivores: natural selection or sexual selection?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randau, Marcela; Carbone, Chris; Turvey, Samuel T

    2013-01-01

    The remarkable elongated upper canines of extinct sabretoothed carnivorous mammals have been the subject of considerable speculation on their adaptive function, but the absence of living analogues prevents any direct inference about their evolution. We analysed scaling relationships of the upper canines of 20 sabretoothed feliform carnivores (Nimravidae, Barbourofelidae, Machairodontinae), representing both dirk-toothed and scimitar-toothed sabretooth ecomorphs, and 33 non-sabretoothed felids in relation to body size in order to characterize and identify the evolutionary processes driving their development, using the scaling relationships of carnassial teeth in both groups as a control. Carnassials display isometric allometry in both sabretooths and non-sabretooths, supporting their close relationship with meat-slicing, whereas the upper canines of both groups display positive allometry with body size. Whereas there is no statistical difference in allometry of upper canine height between dirk-toothed and scimitar-toothed sabretooth ecomorphs, the significantly stronger positive allometry of upper canine height shown by sabretooths as a whole compared to non-sabretooths reveals that different processes drove canine evolution in these groups. Although sabretoothed canines must still have been effective for prey capture and processing by hypercarnivorous predators, canine morphology in these extinct carnivores was likely to have been driven to a greater extent by sexual selection than in non-sabretooths. Scaling relationships therefore indicate the probable importance of sexual selection in the evolution of the hypertrophied sabretooth anterior dentition. PMID:23951334

  19. Canine evolution in sabretoothed carnivores: natural selection or sexual selection?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcela Randau

    Full Text Available The remarkable elongated upper canines of extinct sabretoothed carnivorous mammals have been the subject of considerable speculation on their adaptive function, but the absence of living analogues prevents any direct inference about their evolution. We analysed scaling relationships of the upper canines of 20 sabretoothed feliform carnivores (Nimravidae, Barbourofelidae, Machairodontinae, representing both dirk-toothed and scimitar-toothed sabretooth ecomorphs, and 33 non-sabretoothed felids in relation to body size in order to characterize and identify the evolutionary processes driving their development, using the scaling relationships of carnassial teeth in both groups as a control. Carnassials display isometric allometry in both sabretooths and non-sabretooths, supporting their close relationship with meat-slicing, whereas the upper canines of both groups display positive allometry with body size. Whereas there is no statistical difference in allometry of upper canine height between dirk-toothed and scimitar-toothed sabretooth ecomorphs, the significantly stronger positive allometry of upper canine height shown by sabretooths as a whole compared to non-sabretooths reveals that different processes drove canine evolution in these groups. Although sabretoothed canines must still have been effective for prey capture and processing by hypercarnivorous predators, canine morphology in these extinct carnivores was likely to have been driven to a greater extent by sexual selection than in non-sabretooths. Scaling relationships therefore indicate the probable importance of sexual selection in the evolution of the hypertrophied sabretooth anterior dentition.

  20. Major Patterns in the History of Carnivorous Mammals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Valkenburgh, Blaire

    The history of carnivorous mammals is characterized by a series of rise-and-fall patterns of diversification in which declining clades are replaced by phylogenetically distinct but functionally similar clades. Seven such examples from the last 46 million years are described for North America and Eurasia. In three of the seven turnover events, competition with replacement taxa may have driven the decline of formerly dominant taxa. In the remaining four this is less likely because inferred functional similarity was minimal during the interval of temporal overlap between clades. However, competition still may have been important in producing the rise-and-fall pattern through suppression of evolution within replacement taxa; as long as the large carnivore ecospace was filled, the radiation of new taxa into that ecospace was limited, only occurring after the extinction of the incumbents. The apparently inevitable decline of incumbent taxa may reflect the tendency for clades of large carnivorous mammals to produce more specialized species as they mature, leading to increased vulnerability to extinction when environments change.

  1. A coprological survey of parasites of wild carnivores in Ireland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuart, Peter; Golden, Olwen; Zintl, Annetta; de Waal, Theo; Mulcahy, Grace; McCarthy, Elaine; Lawton, Colin

    2013-10-01

    The increasing movement of people to wilderness areas, shrinking of wildlife habitats and the resulting urbanisation of wildlife has led to growing concerns about the transfer of parasitic diseases, particularly from contaminated faeces. Faecal samples from wild carnivores in Ireland were examined for the presence of protozoan and nematode parasites. Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) samples (n = 91) were positive for Uncinaria stenocephala (38%), Eucoleus aerophilus (26%), Toxocara canis (20%), Trichuris vulpis (4%) and Isospora-like oocysts (9%). Badger (Meles meles) samples (n = 50) were positive for Uncinaria criniformis (40%), E. aerophilus (6%) and Isospora-like oocysts (16%). No parasites were observed in pine marten (n = 48; Martes martes) faeces. Approximately 5% of American mink (Mustela vison) samples were positive for Cryptosporidium by polymerase chain reaction (identified as Cryptosporidium andersoni (n = 3) and 'mink' genotype (n = 1)). The results suggest that wild carnivores in Ireland have a range of parasites, although it is unclear from the present study to what extent these infections are associated with morbidity. While it can be expected that, via their faeces, wild carnivores contribute to the spread of these parasites, they are unlikely the primary source of environmental contamination. Therefore, they should not always be the principal target of control measures. PMID:23900557

  2. Examining the Prey Mass of Terrestrial and Aquatic Carnivorous Mammals: Minimum, Maximum and Range

    OpenAIRE

    Tucker, Marlee A.; Tracey L Rogers

    2014-01-01

    Predator-prey body mass relationships are a vital part of food webs across ecosystems and provide key information for predicting the susceptibility of carnivore populations to extinction. Despite this, there has been limited research on the minimum and maximum prey size of mammalian carnivores. Without information on large-scale patterns of prey mass, we limit our understanding of predation pressure, trophic cascades and susceptibility of carnivores to decreasing prey populations. The majorit...

  3. Assessing sloth bears as surrogates for carnivore conservation in Sri Lanka

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratnayeke, Shyamala; Van Manen, Frank T.

    2012-01-01

    Bears are large, charismatic mammals whose presence often garners conservation attention. Because healthy bear populations typically require large, contiguous areas of habitat, land conservation actions often are assumed to benefit co-occurring species, including other mammalian carnivores. However, we are not aware of an empirical test of this assumption. We used remote camera data from 2 national parks in Sri Lanka to test the hypothesis that the frequency of detection of sloth bears (Melursus ursinus) is associated with greater richness of carnivore species. We focused on mammalian carnivores because they play a pivotal role in the stability of ecological communities and are among Sri Lanka's most endangered species. Seven of Sri Lanka's carnivores are listed as endangered, vulnerable, or near threatened, and little empirical information exists on their status and distribution. During 2002–03, we placed camera traps at 152 sites to document carnivore species presence. We used Poisson regression to develop predictive models for 3 categories of dependent variables: species richness of (1) all carnivores, (2) carnivores considered at risk, and (3) carnivores of least conservation concern. For each category, we analyzed 8 a priori models based on combinations of sloth bear detections, sample year, and study area and used Akaike's information criterion (AICc) to test our research hypothesis. We detected sloth bears at 55 camera sites and detected 13 of Sri Lanka's 14 Carnivora species. Species richness of all carnivores showed positive associations with the number of sloth bear detections, regardless of study area. Sloth bear detections were also positively associated with species richness of carnivores at risk across both study years and study areas, but not with species richness of common carnivores. Sloth bears may serve as a valuable surrogate species whose habitat protection would contribute to conservation of other carnivores in Sri Lanka.

  4. Beware of the wolf: Is animal fear affecting willingness to pay for conservation of large carnivores?

    OpenAIRE

    Brännlund, Runar; Johansson, Maria; Karlsson, Jens; Sjöström, Magnus

    2010-01-01

    From an interdisciplinary approach, this study aims at analysing self-reported animal fear, specifically large carnivore fear, in relation to public willingness to financially contribute to fulfil a governmental policy on large carnivore-induced costs. In a survey of 2 455 Swedes, it was found that people whose animal fear was directed particularly towards large carnivores, were less likely to be willing to pay (WTP), or were likely to be willing to pay a lower amount of money. In the predict...

  5. Human-Carnivore Conflicts in Private Conservancy Lands of Elerai and Oltiyiani in Amboseli Area, Kenya

    OpenAIRE

    Moses Makonjio Okello; John Warui Kiringe; Fiesta Warinwa

    2014-01-01

    Human-carnivore conflicts represent the most common negative form of interactions between humans and wildlife. Most carnivores involved in such conflicts are: lion, hyena, leopard and cheetah. Three strategies are normally used in Kenya to mitigate such conflicts; consolation for lost livestock and human life to increase tolerance to them, use of predator proof homesteads especially among pastoralists, use flicking lights at night to discourage approach of carnivores ne...

  6. Smallest bitter taste receptor(T2Rs)gene repertoire in carnivores%Smallest bitter taste receptor (T2Rs) gene repertoire in carnivores

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ling-Ling HU; Peng SHI

    2013-01-01

    Bitter taste reception is presumably associated with dietary selection,preventing animals from ingesting potentially harmful compounds.Accordingly,carnivores,who encounter these toxic substances less often,should have fewer genes associated with bitter taste reception compared with herbivores and omnivores.To investigate the genetic basis of bitter taste reception,we confirmed bitter taste receptor (T2R) genes previously found in the genome sequences of two herbivores (cow and horse),two omnivores (mouse and rat) and one carnivore (dog).We also identified,for the first time,the T2R repertoire from the genome of other four carnivore species (ferret,giant panda,polar bear and cat) and detected 17-20 bitter receptor genes from the five carnivore genomes,including 12-16 intact genes,0-1 partial but putatively functional genes,and 3-8 pseudogenes.Both the intact T2R genes and the total T2R gene number among carnivores were the smallest among the tested species,supporting earlier speculations that carnivores have fewer T2R genes,herbivores an intermediate number,and omnivores the largest T2R gene repertoire.To further explain the genetic basis for this disparity,we constructed a phylogenetic tree,which showed most of the T2R genes from the five carnivores were one-to-one orthologs across the tree,suggesting that carnivore T2Rs were conserved among mammals.Similarly,the small carnivore T2R family size was likely due to rare duplication events.Collectively,these results strengthen arguments for the connection between T2R gene family size,diet and habit.

  7. Dark respiration and photosynthesis of dormant and sprouting turions of aquatic plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 179, č. 2 (2011), s. 151-158. ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Carnivorous and non-carnivorous plants * dormancy * storage function Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.145, year: 2011

  8. Tissue mineral nutrient content in turions of aquatic plants: does it represent a storage function?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 176, č. 2 (2010), s. 145-151. ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : carnivorous and non-carnivorous plant s * turion N, P, K, Ca and Mg content * water chemistry Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.108, year: 2010

  9. The use of 65Zn for estimating populations of carnivores

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carnivore populations are difficult to measure by conventional methods. We have developed a new method which involves catching one or more individuals from a population and injecting them with the isotope 65Zn. The radio-isotope appears in the faeces and assuming that the proportion of labelled to unlabelled faeces will equal the proportion of labelled to unlabelled individuals it is possible to estimate the size of the population. We have shown that the method gives an accurate estimate for a population of captive badgers of known size and we have used it in the field to estimate the size of wild badger populations. (author)

  10. First findings and prevalence of adult heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis) in wild carnivores from Serbia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Penezic, Aleksandra; Selakovic, Sanja; Pavlovic, Ivan; Cirovic, Dusko

    2014-01-01

    Heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) is a parasitic roundworm that causes a zoonotic disease known as dirofilariosis. Little is known about the role of wild carnivores serving as reservoirs in nature. Therefore, we examined 738 hearts and lungs of free ranging wild carnivores from Serbia to determine the

  11. Carnivore repatriation and holarctic prey: narrowing the deficit in ecological effectiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Joel

    2007-08-01

    The continuing global decline of large carnivores has catalyzed great interest in reintroduction to restore populations and to reestablish ecologically functional relationships. I used variation in the distribution of four Holarctic prey species and their behavior as proxies to investigate the pace and intensity by which responses are lost or reinvigorated by carnivore repatriation. By simulating the presence of wolves (Canis lupus), tigers (Panthera tigris), and brown bears (Ursus arctos) at 19 transcontinental sites, I assayed three metrics of prey performance in areas with no large terrestrial carnivores (the polar islands of Greenland and Svalbard), extant native carnivores (Eastern Siberian Shield, boreal Canada, and Alaska); and repatriated carnivores (the Yellowstone region and Rocky Mountains). The loss and reestablishment of large carnivores changed the ecological effectiveness of systems by (1) dampening immediate group benefits, diminishing awareness, and diminishing flight reaction in caribou (Rangifer tarandus) where predation was eliminated and (2) reinstituting sensitivity to carnivores by elk (Cervus elaphus) and moose (Alces alces) in the Yellowstone region to levels observed in Asian elk when sympatric with Siberian tigers and wolves or in Alaskan moose sympatric with wolves. Behavioral compensation to reintroduced carnivores occurred within a single generation, but only the vigilance reaction of bison (Bison bison) in Yellowstone exceeded that of their wolf-exposed conspecifics from boreal Canada. Beyond these overt responses by prey, snow depth and distance to suitably vegetated habitat was related to heightened vigilance in moose and elk, respectively, but only at sites with carnivores. These findings are insufficient to determine whether similar patterns might apply to other species or in areas with alien predators, and they suggest that the presumed excessive vulnerability of naïve prey to repatriated carnivores may be ill-founded. Although

  12. European quaternary refugia: a factor in large carnivore extinction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Regan, Hannah J.; Turner, Alan; Wilkinson, David M.

    2002-12-01

    The extinction of large carnivores in Europe during the Quaternary is reviewed and the potential role of glacial refugia in these extinctions is investigated using the VORTEX model for population viability analysis. A model was built for a medium sized big cat similar to the extinct Panthera gombaszoegensis utilising life history data from the modern jaguar Panthera onca. This approach highlighted the potential importance of glacial refugia in the extinction process. Even model refugia the size of the Italian peninsula did not guarantee persistence of a population over a 1000 yr time span, illustrating the role of chance in survival in such a refugium. An area the size of the largest Mediterranean island was unable to support a big cat population for a period of 1000 yr. The models also demonstrated the importance of inbreeding as a mechanism for extinction in refugia. It is suggested that repeated genetic bottlenecks during successive glaciations would tend to remove lethal recessive alleles from the population, increasing the probability of survival in refugia in subsequent glaciations. The history of extinction of large carnivores in the European Quaternary is interpreted in the light of these results.

  13. Predicting carnivore occurrence with noninvasive surveys and occupancy modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Robert A.; Donovan, Therese M.; MacKay, Paula; Zielinski, William J.; Buzas, Jeffrey S.

    2011-01-01

    Terrestrial carnivores typically have large home ranges and exist at low population densities, thus presenting challenges to wildlife researchers. We employed multiple, noninvasive survey methods—scat detection dogs, remote cameras, and hair snares—to collect detection–nondetection data for elusive American black bears (Ursus americanus), fishers (Martes pennanti), and bobcats (Lynx rufus) throughout the rugged Vermont landscape. We analyzed these data using occupancy modeling that explicitly incorporated detectability as well as habitat and landscape variables. For black bears, percentage of forested land within 5 km of survey sites was an important positive predictor of occupancy, and percentage of human developed land within 5 km was a negative predictor. Although the relationship was less clear for bobcats, occupancy appeared positively related to the percentage of both mixed forest and forested wetland habitat within 1 km of survey sites. The relationship between specific covariates and fisher occupancy was unclear, with no specific habitat or landscape variables directly related to occupancy. For all species, we used model averaging to predict occurrence across the study area. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analyses of our black bear and fisher models suggested that occupancy modeling efforts with data from noninvasive surveys could be useful for carnivore conservation and management, as they provide insights into habitat use at the regional and landscape scale without requiring capture or direct observation of study species.

  14. Inside the trap: gland morphologies, digestive enzymes, and the evolution of plant carnivory in the Caryophyllales⋆

    OpenAIRE

    Renner, Tanya; Specht, Chelsea D.

    2013-01-01

    The digestion of prey by carnivorous plants is determined in part by suites of enzymes that are associated with morphologically and anatomically diverse trapping mechanisms. Chitinases represent a group of enzymes known to be integral to effective plant carnivory. In non-carnivorous plants, chitinases commonly act as pathogenesis-related proteins, which are either induced in response to insect herbivory and fungal elicitors, or constitutively expressed in tissues vulnerable to attack. In the ...

  15. Phytochemistry of the carnivorous sundew genus Drosera (Droseraceae) - future perspectives and ethnopharmacological relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egan, Paul A; van der Kooy, Frank

    2013-10-01

    Species of the carnivorous genus Drosera L. have long been a source of valuable natural products. The various phytochemicals characteristic of these species, particularly 1,4-naphthoquinones and flavonoids, have contributed to the diverse utilization of sundews in traditional medicine systems worldwide. A growing number of studies have sought to investigate the comparative phytochemistry of Drosera species for improved sources of pharmaceutically important compounds. The outcomes of these studies are here collated, with emergent trends discussed in detail. Important factors which affect production of secondary metabolites in plants are critically examined, such as environmental influences and in vitro culture, and recommendations subsequently presented based on this. Explicitly, the current review aims to i) present an updated, comprehensive listing of the phytochemical constituents of the genus (including quantitative data where available), ii) summarize important factors which may influence the production of phytopharmaceuticals in plants, and iii) recommend guidelines for future research based on the above, including improved standardization and quality control. We have also included a section discussing future perspectives of research on Drosera spp. based on three different research lines i) the potential to produce much needed lead compounds for treatment of tuberculosis, ii) the potential role of anthocyanins in nitrogen transport, and iii) research into 'Natural Deep Eutectic' solvents produced by Drosera spp. in the droplets or 'dew' employed to capture insect prey. PMID:24130022

  16. Stable isotopes reveal rail-associated behavior in a threatened carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopkins, John B; Whittington, Jesse; Clevenger, Anthony P; Sawaya, Michael A; St Clair, Colleen Cassady

    2014-01-01

    Human-wildlife conflict is a leading cause of adult mortality for large carnivores worldwide. Train collision is the primary cause of mortality for threatened grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) in Banff National Park. We investigated the use of stable isotope analysis as a tool for identifying bears that use the railway in Banff. Rail-associated bears had higher δ(15)N and δ(34)S values than bears sampled away from the rail, but similar δ(13)C values. Because elevated δ(15)N values are indicative of higher animal protein consumption, rail-associated bears likely preyed on ungulates that foraged along the rail or scavenged on train-killed animals. The higher δ(34)S values in bear hair could have resulted from bears consuming sulfur pellets spilled on the rail or through the uptake of sulfur in the plants bears or animals consumed. Similar δ(13)C values suggest that the two types of bears had generally similar plant-based diets. Results from this study suggest that stable isotopes analysis could be used as a non-invasive, affordable, and efficient technique to identify and monitor bears that forage on the railway in Banff and potentially other transportation corridors worldwide. PMID:24936982

  17. Elastic models of the fast traps of carnivorous Dionaea and Aldrovanda

    CERN Document Server

    Joyeux, Marc

    2013-01-01

    The carnivorous aquatic Waterwheel Plant (Aldrovanda vesiculosa L.) and the closely related terrestrial Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula SOL. EX J. ELLIS) both feature elaborate snap-traps, which shut after reception of an external mechanical stimulus by prey animals. Although Aldrovanda is usually considered as a miniature aquatic Dionaea, the shutting mechanisms of the two plants are actually quite different. The fast shutting of Aldrovanda is indeed based on a simple swelling/shrinking mechanism, while the movement of Dionaea's traps is accelerated by the snap-buckling of the lobes. The purpose of this Report is to describe several key improvements to the elastic models that have recently been introduced to elucidate these movements [Poppinga and Joyeux, Phys. Rev. E 84, 041928 (2011)]. In particular, a precise mechanism for the action of the motor cells of Aldrovanda is proposed, the facts that the opening of the leaves of Dionaea is an irreversible mechanism based on growth and that the strain field is a...

  18. Remote camera-trap methods and analyses reveal impacts of rangeland management on Namibian carnivore communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kauffman, M.J.; Sanjayan, M.; Lowenstein, J.; Nelson, A.; Jeo, R.M.; Crooks, K.R.

    2007-01-01

    Assessing the abundance and distribution of mammalian carnivores is vital for understanding their ecology and providing for their long-term conservation. Because of the difficulty of trapping and handling carnivores many studies have relied on abundance indices that may not accurately reflect real abundance and distribution patterns. We developed statistical analyses that detect spatial correlation in visitation data from combined scent station and camera-trap surveys, and we illustrate how to use such data to make inferences about changes in carnivore assemblages. As a case study we compared the carnivore communities of adjacent communal and freehold rangelands in central Namibia. We used an index of overdispersion to test for repeat visits to individual camera-trap scent stations and a bootstrap simulation to test for correlations in visits to camera neighbourhoods. After distilling our presence-absence data to the most defensible spatial scale, we assessed overall carnivore visitation using logistic regression. Our analyses confirmed the expected pattern of a depauparate fauna on the communal rangelands compared to the freehold rangelands. Additionally, the species that were not detected on communal sites were the larger-bodied carnivores. By modelling these rare visits as a Poisson process we illustrate a method of inferring whether or not such patterns are because of local extinction of species or are simply a result of low sample effort. Our Namibian case study indicates that these field methods and analyses can detect meaningful differences in the carnivore communities brought about by anthropogenic influences. ?? 2007 FFI.

  19. Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) on wild carnivores in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labruna, Marcelo B; Jorge, Rodrigo S P; Sana, Dênis A; Jácomo, Anah Tereza A; Kashivakura, Cyntia K; Furtado, Mariana M; Ferro, Claudia; Perez, Samuel A; Silveira, Leandro; Santos, Tarcísio S; Marques, Samuel R; Morato, Ronaldo G; Nava, Alessandra; Adania, Cristina H; Teixeira, Rodrigo H F; Gomes, Albério A B; Conforti, Valéria A; Azevedo, Fernando C C; Prada, Cristiana S; Silva, Jean C R; Batista, Adriana F; Marvulo, Maria Fernanda V; Morato, Rose L G; Alho, Cleber J R; Pinter, Adriano; Ferreira, Patrícia M; Ferreira, Fernado; Barros-Battesti, Darci M

    2005-01-01

    The present study reports field data of ticks infesting wild carnivores captured from July 1998 to September 2004 in Brazil. Additional data were obtained from one tick collection and from previous published data of ticks on carnivores in Brazil. During field work, a total of 3437 ticks were collected from 89 Cerdocyon thous (crab-eating fox), 58 Chrysocyon brachyurus (maned wolf), 30 Puma concolor (puma), 26 Panthera onca (jaguar), 12 Procyon cancrivorus (crab-eating raccoon), 4 Speothos venaticus (bush dog), 6 Pseudalopex vetulus (hoary fox), 6 Nasua nasua (coati), 6 Leopardus pardalis (ocelot), 2 Leopardus tigrinus (oncilla), 1 Leopardus wiedii (margay), 1 Herpailurus yagouaroundi (jaguarundi), 1 Oncifelis colocolo (pampas cat), 1 Eira barbara (tayara), 1 Galictis vittata (grison), 1 Lontra longicaudis (neotropical otter), and 1 Potus flavus (kinkajou). Data obtained from the Acari Collection IBSP included a total of 381 tick specimens collected on 13 C. thous, 8 C. brachyurus, 3 P. concolor, 10 P. onca, 3 P. cancrivorus, 4 N. nasua, 1 L. pardalis, 1 L. wiedii, 4 H. yagouaroundi, 1 Galictis cuja (lesser grison), and 1 L. longicaudis. The only tick-infested carnivore species previously reported in Brazil, for which we do not present any field data are Pseudalopex gymnocercus (pampas fox), Conepatus chinga (Molina's hog-nosed skunk), and Conepatus semistriatus (striped hog-nosed skunk). We report the first tick records in Brazil on two Felidae species (O. colocolo, H. yagouaroundi), two Canidae species (P. vetulus, S. venaticus), one Procyonidae species (P. flavus) and one Mustelidae (E. barbara). Tick infestation remains unreported for 5 of the 26 Carnivora species native in Brazil: Oncifelis geoffroyi (Geoffroy's cat), Atelocynus microtis (short-eared dog), Pteronura brasiliensis (giant otter), Mustela africana (Amazon weasel), and Bassaricyon gabbii (olingo). Our field data comprise 16 tick species represented by the genera Amblyomma (12 species), Ixodes (1

  20. Smallest bitter taste receptor (T2Rs) gene repertoire in carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Ling-Ling; Shi, Peng

    2013-06-01

    Bitter taste reception is presumably associated with dietary selection, preventing animals from ingesting potentially harmful compounds. Accordingly, carnivores, who encounter these toxic substances less often, should have fewer genes associated with bitter taste reception compared with herbivores and omnivores. To investigate the genetic basis of bitter taste reception, we confirmed bitter taste receptor (T2R) genes previously found in the genome sequences of two herbivores (cow and horse), two omnivores (mouse and rat) and one carnivore (dog). We also identified, for the first time, the T2R repertoire from the genome of other four carnivore species (ferret, giant panda, polar bear and cat) and detected 17-20 bitter receptor genes from the five carnivore genomes, including 12-16 intact genes, 0-1 partial but putatively functional genes, and 3-8 pseudogenes. Both the intact T2R genes and the total T2R gene number among carnivores were the smallest among the tested species, supporting earlier speculations that carnivores have fewer T2R genes, herbivores an intermediate number, and omnivores the largest T2R gene repertoire. To further explain the genetic basis for this disparity, we constructed a phylogenetic tree, which showed most of the T2R genes from the five carnivores were one-to-one orthologs across the tree, suggesting that carnivore T2Rs were conserved among mammals. Similarly, the small carnivore T2R family size was likely due to rare duplication events. Collectively, these results strengthen arguments for the connection between T2R gene family size, diet and habit. PMID:23776004

  1. Carnivorous planktonic Difflugia (Protista, Amoebina Testacea) and their predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Bo-Ping; Wang, Tian; Xu, Lei; Lin, Qiu Qi; Jinyu, Zhang; Dumont, Henri J

    2011-08-01

    Four planktonic species of Difflugia co-occurring in a south Chinese reservoir were found to be carnivorous, but the diet was widest in the largest species (D. tuberspinifera) and narrowest in the smallest (D. hydrostatica). It included rotifers, ciliates, dinoflagellates, floating eggs, and small particles associated with organic debris. Scavenging and cannibalism were also observed. Species with a collared test (D. biwae, D. mulanensis) showed a form of suction-feeding, while species with teeth on the pseudostome used these, together with their pseudopods, as "inverted crown corks", providing leverage for opening the lorica of their (rotifer) prey. Predators of Difflugia included cyclopoid copepods. In addition, the rotifers Asplanchna priodonta, Ploesoma hudsoni and, occasionally, big ciliates (Stentor sp.) all ingested their prey as a whole. PMID:21632222

  2. Tigers and their prey: Predicting carnivore densities from prey abundance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karanth, K.U.; Nichols, J.D.; Kumar, N.S.; Link, W.A.; Hines, J.E.

    2004-01-01

    The goal of ecology is to understand interactions that determine the distribution and abundance of organisms. In principle, ecologists should be able to identify a small number of limiting resources for a species of interest, estimate densities of these resources at different locations across the landscape, and then use these estimates to predict the density of the focal species at these locations. In practice, however, development of functional relationships between abundances of species and their resources has proven extremely difficult, and examples of such predictive ability are very rare. Ecological studies of prey requirements of tigers Panthera tigris led us to develop a simple mechanistic model for predicting tiger density as a function of prey density. We tested our model using data from a landscape-scale long-term (1995-2003) field study that estimated tiger and prey densities in 11 ecologically diverse sites across India. We used field techniques and analytical methods that specifically addressed sampling and detectability, two issues that frequently present problems in macroecological studies of animal populations. Estimated densities of ungulate prey ranged between 5.3 and 63.8 animals per km2. Estimated tiger densities (3.2-16.8 tigers per 100 km2) were reasonably consistent with model predictions. The results provide evidence of a functional relationship between abundances of large carnivores and their prey under a wide range of ecological conditions. In addition to generating important insights into carnivore ecology and conservation, the study provides a potentially useful model for the rigorous conduct of macroecological science.

  3. Large-scale evaluation of carnivore road mortality: the effect of landscape and local scale characteristics

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Červinka, J.; Riegert, J.; Grill, S.; Šálek, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 60, č. 3 (2015), s. 233-243. ISSN 2199-2401 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Carnivores * Landscape characteristics * Linear structures * Local characteristics * Road mortality * Temporal pattern Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour

  4. Living with large carnivores: predation on livestock by the snow leopard (Uncia uncia)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bagchi, S.; Mishra, C.

    2006-01-01

    Livestock predation by large carnivores and their retaliatory persecution by pastoralists are worldwide conservation concerns. Poor understanding of the ecological and social underpinnings of this human¿wildlife conflict hampers effective conflict management programs. The endangered snow leopard Unc

  5. Space Use of African Wild Dogs in Relation to Other Large Carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    Darnell, Angela M.; Graf, Jan A.; Somers, Michael J.; Slotow, Rob; Szykman Gunther, Micaela

    2014-01-01

    Interaction among species through competition is a principle process structuring ecological communities, affecting behavior, distribution, and ultimately the population dynamics of species. High competition among large African carnivores, associated with extensive diet overlap, manifests in interactions between subordinate African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) and dominant lions (Panthera leo) and spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta). Using locations of large carnivores in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, Sou...

  6. Habitat Selection of a Large Carnivore along Human-Wildlife Boundaries in a Highly Modified Landscape

    OpenAIRE

    Chihiro Takahata; Scott Eric Nielsen; Akiko Takii; Shigeyuki Izumiyama

    2014-01-01

    When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears...

  7. Infectivity of Canadian isolates of Trichinella spiralis nativa for swine, rats and carnivores.

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, H. J.

    1985-01-01

    The infectivity of Trichinella spiralis nativa isolates from widely separated geographic areas of Canada was determined by feeding infected musculature to swine, laboratory rats and carnivores (cats, foxes, ferrets). Low infectivity for swine and rats and high infectivity for carnivores were observed. Light infections were established in four of 16 swine examined between 25 and 53 days postinfection. Feeding of infected porcine musculature to ferrets demonstrated that Trichinella spiralis nat...

  8. Chromosomal rearrangements and karyotype evolution in carnivores revealed by chromosome painting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, W; Wang, J; Su, W; Wang, D; Tanomtong, A; Perelman, P L; Graphodatsky, A S; Yang, F

    2012-01-01

    Chromosomal evolution in carnivores has been revisited extensively using cross-species chromosome painting. Painting probes derived from flow-sorted chromosomes of the domestic dog, which has one of the most rearranged karyotypes in mammals and the highest dipoid number (2n=78) in carnivores, are a powerful tool in detecting both evolutionary intra- and inter-chromosomal rearrangements. However, only a few comparative maps have been established between dog and other non-Canidae species. Here, we extended cross-species painting with dog probes to seven more species representing six carnivore families: Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), the stone marten (Martes foina), the small Indian civet (Viverricula indica), the Asian palm civet (Paradoxurus hermaphrodites), Javan mongoose (Hepestes javanicas), the raccoon (Procyon lotor) and the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). The numbers and positions of intra-chromosomal rearrangements were found to differ among these carnivore species. A comparative map between human and stone marten, and a map among the Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena phocaenoides asiaeorientalis), stone marten and human were also established to facilitate outgroup comparison and to integrate comparative maps between stone marten and other carnivores with such maps between human and other species. These comparative maps give further insight into genome evolution and karyotype phylogenetic relationships among carnivores, and will facilitate the transfer of gene mapping data from human, domestic dog and cat to other species. PMID:22086079

  9. Chromosomal rearrangements and karyotype evolution in carnivores revealed by chromosome painting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, W; Wang, J; Su, W; Wang, D; Tanomtong, A; Perelman, P L; Graphodatsky, A S; Yang, F

    2012-01-01

    Chromosomal evolution in carnivores has been revisited extensively using cross-species chromosome painting. Painting probes derived from flow-sorted chromosomes of the domestic dog, which has one of the most rearranged karyotypes in mammals and the highest dipoid number (2n=78) in carnivores, are a powerful tool in detecting both evolutionary intra- and inter-chromosomal rearrangements. However, only a few comparative maps have been established between dog and other non-Canidae species. Here, we extended cross-species painting with dog probes to seven more species representing six carnivore families: Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), the stone marten (Martes foina), the small Indian civet (Viverricula indica), the Asian palm civet (Paradoxurus hermaphrodites), Javan mongoose (Hepestes javanicas), the raccoon (Procyon lotor) and the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). The numbers and positions of intra-chromosomal rearrangements were found to differ among these carnivore species. A comparative map between human and stone marten, and a map among the Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena phocaenoides asiaeorientalis), stone marten and human were also established to facilitate outgroup comparison and to integrate comparative maps between stone marten and other carnivores with such maps between human and other species. These comparative maps give further insight into genome evolution and karyotype phylogenetic relationships among carnivores, and will facilitate the transfer of gene mapping data from human, domestic dog and cat to other species. PMID:22086079

  10. Shrub encroachment affects mammalian carnivore abundance and species richness in semiarid rangelands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaum, Niels; Rossmanith, Eva; Popp, Alexander; Jeltsch, Florian

    2007-01-01

    Shrub encroachment due to overgrazing has led to dramatic changes of savanna landscapes and is considered to be one of the most threatening forms of rangeland degradation e.g. via habitat fragmentation. Mammalian carnivores are particularly vulnerable to local extinction in fragmented landscapes. However, our understanding of how shrub encroachment affects mammalian carnivores is poor. Here we investigated the relative sensitivities of ten native carnivores to different levels of shrub cover ranging from low (25%) in 20 southern Kalahari rangeland sites. Relative abundance of carnivores was monitored along 40 sand transects (5 m × 250 m) for each site. Our results show that increasing shrub cover affects carnivore species differently. African wild cats, striped polecats, cape foxes and suricates were negatively affected, whereas we found hump-shaped responses for yellow mongooses, bat-eared foxes and small-spotted genets with maximum abundance at shrub covers between 10 and 18%. In contrast, black-backed jackals, slender mongooses and small spotted cats were not significantly affected by increasing shrub cover. However, a negative impact of high shrub cover above 18% was congruent for all species. We conclude that intermediate shrub cover (10-18%) in savanna landscapes sustain viable populations of small carnivores.

  11. Linking Predation Risk, Herbivore Physiological Stress and Microbial Decomposition of Plant Litter

    OpenAIRE

    Schmitz, Oswald J; Bradford, Mark A.; Strickland, Michael S.; Hawlena, Dror

    2013-01-01

    The quantity and quality of detritus entering the soil determines the rate of decomposition by microbial communities as well as recycle rates of nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) sequestration1,2. Plant litter comprises the majority of detritus3, and so it is assumed that decomposition is only marginally influenced by biomass inputs from animals such as herbivores and carnivores4,5. However, carnivores may influence microbial decomposition of plant litter via a chain of interactions in which predat...

  12. Parasites of domestic and wild animals in South Africa. XLIV. Fleas (Insecta : Siphonaptera : Pulicidae collected from 15 carnivore species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.G. Horak

    2004-11-01

    Full Text Available Fleas were collected from 61 wild carnivores belonging to 13 species in various nature reserves and on farms, two feral domestic cats in a nature reserve and a domestic dog in the city of Johannesburg. Eleven flea species, including two subspecies of one of these, belonging to six genera were recovered. Amongst these only Ctenocephalides felis felis and Ctenocephalides felis strongylus are considered specific parasites of carnivores. The remaining ten species normally infest the prey animals of the various carnivores.

  13. Locating human-wildlife interactions: landscape constructions and responses to large carnivore conservation in India and Norway

    OpenAIRE

    Sunetro Ghosal; Ketil Skogen; Siddhartha Krishnan

    2015-01-01

    People’s reactions to large carnivores take many forms, ranging from support and coexistence to resistance and conflict. While these reactions are the outcome of many different factors, in this paper we specifically explore the link between social constructions of landscapes and divergent responses to large carnivore presence. We compare case studies from four different landscapes shared by people and large carnivores, in India and Norway. We use social construction of landscapes ...

  14. Hierarchical Multi-Species Modeling of Carnivore Responses to Hunting, Habitat and Prey in a West African Protected Area

    OpenAIRE

    Burton, A. Cole; Sam, Moses K.; Balangtaa, Cletus; Brashares, Justin S.

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of global efforts to shield wildlife from anthropogenic impacts, yet their effectiveness at protecting wide-ranging species prone to human conflict – notably mammalian carnivores – is increasingly in question. An understanding of carnivore responses to human-induced and natural changes in and around PAs is critical not only to the conservation of threatened carnivore populations, but also to the effective protection of ecosystems in which they play key ...

  15. Tracking neighbours promotes the coexistence of large carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Bao, José Vicente; Mattisson, Jenny; Persson, Jens; Aronsson, Malin; Andrén, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    The study of competition and coexistence among similar interacting species has long been considered a cornerstone in evolutionary and community ecology. However, understanding coexistence remains a challenge. Using two similar and sympatric competing large carnivores, Eurasian lynx and wolverines, we tested the hypotheses that tracking among heterospecifics and reactive responses to potential risk decreases the probability of an agonistic encounter when predators access shared food resources, thus facilitating coexistence. Lynx and wolverines actively avoided each other, with the degree of avoidance being greater for simultaneous than time-delayed predator locations. Wolverines reacted to the presence of lynx at relatively short distances (mean: 383 m). In general, lynx stayed longer, and were more stationary, around reindeer carcasses than wolverines. However, when both predators were present at the same time around a carcass, lynx shortened their visits, while wolverine behavior did not change. Our results support the idea that risk avoidance is a reactive, rather than a predictive, process. Since wolverines have adapted to coexist with lynx, exploiting lynx-killed reindeer carcasses while avoiding potential encounters, the combined presence of both predators may reduce wolverine kill rate and thus the total impact of these predators on semi-domestic reindeer in Scandinavia. Consequently, population management directed at lynx may affect wolverine populations and human-wolverine conflicts. PMID:26979573

  16. Coproduction and ecological significance of naphthoquinones in carnivorous sundews (Drosera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egan, Paul A; van der Kooy, Frank

    2012-06-01

    While the 1,4-naphthoquinone derivatives 7-methyljuglone (1) and plumbagin (2) possess a diverse and well documented array of biological activities, relatively little remains known about the functional significance of these compounds in planta and, in particular, their possible relation to carnivorous syndromes. In addition, the chemotaxonomic distribution of naphthoquinones (NQs) amongst species of Drosera L. is of phytopharmaceutical interest. Following the quantitative assessment of interspecific variation of 1 and 2 in 13 species and cultivars of Drosera, our findings demonstrate that these NQs are ubiquitously coproduced in, generally, species-specific ratios, and that 1 appears negatively associated with the occurrence of pigmentation in sundews. The prospective antifeedant function of 1 was evaluated in relation to allocation in various organs and ontogenetic phases of D. capensis L., revealing that significantly higher levels were accumulated in young and reproductive organs, most likely for defensive purposes. Investigation into the relationship between the biosynthesis of NQs and carnivory showed that production of 1 is optimally induced and localized in leaves in response to capture of insect prey. As a whole, these findings reveal the clear importance of this secondary metabolite in ecological interactions as well as holding implication for future bioactivity studies on the genus. PMID:22700223

  17. Morbillivirus infections, with special emphasis on morbilliviruses of carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, T

    1999-09-01

    Morbilliviruses infections cause significant mortality in human beings and animals. Measles virus is responsible for up to two million childhood deaths annually in the developing world, while rinderpest and peste des petits ruminants cause severe epizootics in domestic and wild ruminants in areas of the world where they remain endemic. Canine distemper virus (CDV) is a cause of fatal disease in many species of carnivores. Distemper is controlled by vaccination in domestic dogs and farmed mink, but it may be impossible to eradicate the virus because of its global distribution and wide variety of susceptible host species, which includes both freshwater and marine seals. Research is currently under way to develop new recombinant vaccines, since the currently available live attenuated vaccines for CDV are not safe for use for all species and many valuable zoo animals need to be protected from CDV. New morbilliviruses with potentially disastrous ecological consequences for marine mammals have been discovered in the past decade; phocid distemper virus (PDV) in seals and the cetacean morbillivirus (CMV) has been found in dolphins, whales and porpoises. Reverse transcription, coupled with the polymerase chain reaction (RT/PCR) and nucleic acid sequencing, has been used to characterise the morbilliviruses and has given insights into the evolution of this virus genus. PMID:10515262

  18. Sport hunting, predator control and conservation of large carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Craig Packer

    Full Text Available Sport hunting has provided important economic incentives for conserving large predators since the early 1970's, but wildlife managers also face substantial pressure to reduce depredation. Sport hunting is an inherently risky strategy for controlling predators as carnivore populations are difficult to monitor and some species show a propensity for infanticide that is exacerbated by removing adult males. Simulation models predict population declines from even moderate levels of hunting in infanticidal species, and harvest data suggest that African countries and U.S. states with the highest intensity of sport hunting have shown the steepest population declines in African lions and cougars over the past 25 yrs. Similar effects in African leopards may have been masked by mesopredator release owing to declines in sympatric lion populations, whereas there is no evidence of overhunting in non-infanticidal populations of American black bears. Effective conservation of these animals will require new harvest strategies and improved monitoring to counter demands for predator control by livestock producers and local communities.

  19. Mutualism between tree shrews and pitcher plants: perspectives and avenues for future research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Charles; Moran, Jonathan A; Chin, Lijin

    2010-10-01

    Three species of Nepenthes pitcher plants from Borneo engage in a mutualistic interaction with mountain tree shrews, the basis of which is the exchange of nutritional resources. The plants produce modified "toilet pitchers" that produce copious amounts of exudates, the latter serving as a food source for tree shrews. The exudates are only accessible to the tree shrews when they position their hindquarters over the pitcher orifice. Tree shrews mark valuable resources with faeces and regularly defecate into the pitchers when they visit them to feed. Faeces represent a valuable source of nitrogen for these Nepenthes species, but there are many facets of the mutualism that are yet to be investigated. These include, but are not limited to, seasonal variation in exudate production rates by the plants, behavioral ecology of visiting tree shrews, and the mechanism by which the plants signal to tree shrews that their pitchers represent a food source. Further research into this extraordinary animal-plant interaction is required to gain a better understanding of the benefits to the participating species. PMID:20861680

  20. The impact of land reform on the status of large carnivores in Zimbabwe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Samual T; Williams, Kathryn S; Joubert, Christoffel J; Hill, Russell A

    2016-01-01

    Large carnivores are decreasing in number due to growing pressure from an expanding human population. It is increasingly recognised that state-protected conservation areas are unlikely to be sufficient to protect viable populations of large carnivores, and that private land will be central to conservation efforts. In 2000, a fast-track land reform programme (FTLRP) was initiated in Zimbabwe, ostensibly to redress the racial imbalance in land ownership, but which also had the potential to break up large areas of carnivore habitat on private land. To date, research has focused on the impact of the FTLRP process on the different human communities, while impacts on wildlife have been overlooked. Here we provide the first systematic assessment of the impact of the FTLRP on the status of large carnivores. Spoor counts were conducted across private, resettled and communal land use types in order to estimate the abundance of large carnivores, and to determine how this had been affected by land reform. The density of carnivore spoor differed significantly between land use types, and was lower on resettlement land than on private land, suggesting that the resettlement process has resulted in a substantial decline in carnivore abundance. Habitat loss and high levels of poaching in and around resettlement areas are the most likely causes. The FTLRP resulted in the large-scale conversion of land that was used sustainably and productively for wildlife into unsustainable, unproductive agricultural land uses. We recommended that models of land reform should consider the type of land available, that existing expertise in land management should be retained where possible, and that resettlement programmes should be carefully planned in order to minimise the impacts on wildlife and on people. PMID:26819838

  1. A hairy case: The evolution of filtering carnivorous Drusinae (Limnephilidae, Trichoptera)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kučinić, Mladen; Oláh, János; Bálint, Miklós; Previšić, Ana; Keresztes, Lujza; Pauls, Steffen U.; Waringer, Johann

    2016-01-01

    The caddisfly subfamily Drusinae BANKS comprises roughly 100 species inhabiting mountain ranges in Europe, Asia Minor and the Caucasus. A 3–gene phylogeny of the subfamily previously identified three major clades that were corroborated by larval morphology and feeding ecologies: scraping grazers, omnivorous shredders and filtering carnivores. Larvae of filtering carnivores exhibit unique head capsule complexities, unknown from other caddisfly larvae. Here we assess the species-level relationships within filtering carnivores, hypothesizing that head capsule complexity is a derived state based on the simple shapes observed in the other feeding groups. We summarize the current taxonomy of the group, describe Drusus krpachi sp. nov., and D. puskasi sp. nov., and present a larval key to filtering carnivorous Drusinae. We infer relationships of all known filtering carnivorous Drusinae and 34 additional Drusinae species using Bayesian species tree analysis and concatenated Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of 3805 bp of sequence data from six gene regions (mtCOI5-P, mtCOI3-P, 16S mrDNA, CADH, WG, 28S nrDNA), morphological cladistics from 308 characters, and a total evidence analysis. All analyses support monophyly of the three feeding ecology groups but fail to fully resolve internal relationships. Within filtering carnivores, variation in head setation and frontoclypeus structure may be associated with progressive niche adaptation, with less complex species recovered at a basal position. We propose that diversification of complex setation and frontoclypeus shape represents a recent evolutionary development, hypothetically enforcing speciation and niche specificity within filtering carnivorous Drusinae. PMID:26265260

  2. Examining the prey mass of terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous mammals: minimum, maximum and range.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlee A Tucker

    Full Text Available Predator-prey body mass relationships are a vital part of food webs across ecosystems and provide key information for predicting the susceptibility of carnivore populations to extinction. Despite this, there has been limited research on the minimum and maximum prey size of mammalian carnivores. Without information on large-scale patterns of prey mass, we limit our understanding of predation pressure, trophic cascades and susceptibility of carnivores to decreasing prey populations. The majority of studies that examine predator-prey body mass relationships focus on either a single or a subset of mammalian species, which limits the strength of our models as well as their broader application. We examine the relationship between predator body mass and the minimum, maximum and range of their prey's body mass across 108 mammalian carnivores, from weasels to baleen whales (Carnivora and Cetacea. We test whether mammals show a positive relationship between prey and predator body mass, as in reptiles and birds, as well as examine how environment (aquatic and terrestrial and phylogenetic relatedness play a role in this relationship. We found that phylogenetic relatedness is a strong driver of predator-prey mass patterns in carnivorous mammals and accounts for a higher proportion of variance compared with the biological drivers of body mass and environment. We show a positive predator-prey body mass pattern for terrestrial mammals as found in reptiles and birds, but no relationship for aquatic mammals. Our results will benefit our understanding of trophic interactions, the susceptibility of carnivores to population declines and the role of carnivores within ecosystems.

  3. Examining the prey mass of terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous mammals: minimum, maximum and range.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Marlee A; Rogers, Tracey L

    2014-01-01

    Predator-prey body mass relationships are a vital part of food webs across ecosystems and provide key information for predicting the susceptibility of carnivore populations to extinction. Despite this, there has been limited research on the minimum and maximum prey size of mammalian carnivores. Without information on large-scale patterns of prey mass, we limit our understanding of predation pressure, trophic cascades and susceptibility of carnivores to decreasing prey populations. The majority of studies that examine predator-prey body mass relationships focus on either a single or a subset of mammalian species, which limits the strength of our models as well as their broader application. We examine the relationship between predator body mass and the minimum, maximum and range of their prey's body mass across 108 mammalian carnivores, from weasels to baleen whales (Carnivora and Cetacea). We test whether mammals show a positive relationship between prey and predator body mass, as in reptiles and birds, as well as examine how environment (aquatic and terrestrial) and phylogenetic relatedness play a role in this relationship. We found that phylogenetic relatedness is a strong driver of predator-prey mass patterns in carnivorous mammals and accounts for a higher proportion of variance compared with the biological drivers of body mass and environment. We show a positive predator-prey body mass pattern for terrestrial mammals as found in reptiles and birds, but no relationship for aquatic mammals. Our results will benefit our understanding of trophic interactions, the susceptibility of carnivores to population declines and the role of carnivores within ecosystems. PMID:25162695

  4. Space use of African wild dogs in relation to other large carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela M Darnell

    Full Text Available Interaction among species through competition is a principle process structuring ecological communities, affecting behavior, distribution, and ultimately the population dynamics of species. High competition among large African carnivores, associated with extensive diet overlap, manifests in interactions between subordinate African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus and dominant lions (Panthera leo and spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta. Using locations of large carnivores in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, South Africa, we found different responses from wild dogs to their two main competitors. Wild dogs avoided lions, particularly during denning, through a combination of spatial and temporal avoidance. However, wild dogs did not exhibit spatial or temporal avoidance of spotted hyenas, likely because wild dog pack sizes were large enough to adequately defend their kills. Understanding that larger carnivores affect the movements and space use of other carnivores is important for managing current small and fragmented carnivore populations, especially as reintroductions and translocations are essential tools used for the survival of endangered species, as with African wild dogs.

  5. Use of an action-selection framework for human-carnivore conflict in the Bangladesh Sundarbans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barlow, Adam C D; Greenwood, Christina J; Ahmad, Ishtiaq U; Smith, James L D

    2010-10-01

    Human-carnivore conflict is manifested in the death of humans, livestock, and carnivores. The resulting negative local attitudes and retribution killings imperil the future of many endangered carnivores. We tailored existing management tools to create a framework to facilitate the selection of actions to alleviate human-carnivore conflict and applied the framework to the human-tiger conflict in the Bangladesh Sundarbans. We identified potential actions that consider previous management efforts, local knowledge, cost-effectiveness, fieldwork experience of authors and project staff, previous research on tiger ecology by the authors, and recommendations from human-carnivore conflict studies in other countries. Our framework includes creation of a profile to improve understanding of the nature of the conflict and its underlying causality. Identified actions include deterrents, education, direct tiger management, and response teams. We ranked actions by their potential to reduce conflict and the monetary cost of their implementation. We ranked tiger-response teams and monitoring problem tigers as the two best actions because both had relatively high impact and cost-effectiveness. We believe this framework could be used under a wide range of human-wildlife conflict situations because it provides a structured approach to selection of mitigating actions. PMID:20345402

  6. Functional constraints on tooth morphology in carnivorous mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smits Peter D

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The range of potential morphologies resulting from evolution is limited by complex interacting processes, ranging from development to function. Quantifying these interactions is important for understanding adaptation and convergent evolution. Using three-dimensional reconstructions of carnivoran and dasyuromorph tooth rows, we compared statistical models of the relationship between tooth row shape and the opposing tooth row, a static feature, as well as measures of mandibular motion during chewing (occlusion, which are kinetic features. This is a new approach to quantifying functional integration because we use measures of movement and displacement, such as the amount the mandible translates laterally during occlusion, as opposed to conventional morphological measures, such as mandible length and geometric landmarks. By sampling two distantly related groups of ecologically similar mammals, we study carnivorous mammals in general rather than a specific group of mammals. Results Statistical model comparisons demonstrate that the best performing models always include some measure of mandibular motion, indicating that functional and statistical models of tooth shape as purely a function of the opposing tooth row are too simple and that increased model complexity provides a better understanding of tooth form. The predictors of the best performing models always included the opposing tooth row shape and a relative linear measure of mandibular motion. Conclusions Our results provide quantitative support of long-standing hypotheses of tooth row shape as being influenced by mandibular motion in addition to the opposing tooth row. Additionally, this study illustrates the utility and necessity of including kinetic features in analyses of morphological integration.

  7. Effectiveness of scat detection dogs for detecting forest carnivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Robert A.; Donovan, T.M.; MacKay, Paula; Zielinski, William J.; Buzas, Jeffrey S.

    2007-01-01

    We assessed the detection and accuracy rates of detection dogs trained to locate scats from free-ranging black bears (Ursus americanus), fishers (Martes pennanti), and bobcats (Lynx rufus). During the summers of 2003-2004, 5 detection teams located 1,565 scats (747 putative black bear, 665 putative fisher, and 153 putative bobcat) at 168 survey sites throughout Vermont, USA. Of 347 scats genetically analyzed for species identification, 179 (51.6%) yielded a positive identification, 131 (37.8%) failed to yield DNA information, and 37 (10.7%) yielded DNA but provided no species confirmation. For 70 survey sites where confirmation of a putative target species' scat was not possible, we assessed the probability that ???1 of the scats collected at the site was deposited by the target species (probability of correct identification; P ID). Based on species confirmations or PID values, we detected bears at 57.1% (96) of sites, fishers at 61.3% (103) of sites, and bobcats at 12.5%o (21) of sites. We estimated that the mean probability of detecting the target species (when present) during a single visit to a site was 0.86 for black bears, 0.95 for fishers, and 0.40 for bobcats. The probability of detecting black bears was largely unaffected by site- or visit-specific covariates, but the probability of detecting fishers varied by detection team. We found little or no effect of topographic ruggedness, vegetation density, or local weather (e.g., temp, humidity) on detection probability for fishers or black bears (data were insufficient for bobcat analyses). Detection dogs were highly effective at locating scats from forest carnivores and provided an efficient and accurate method for collecting detection-nondetection data on multiple species.

  8. Contrasting patterns of herbivore and predator pressure on invasive and native plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelkes, T.; Wouters, B.; Bezemer, T.M.; Harvey, J.A.; Putten, van der W.H.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive non-native plant species often harbor fewer herbivorous insects than related native plant species. However, little is known about how herbivorous insects on non-native plants are exposed to carnivorous insects, and even less is known on plants that have recently expanded their ranges within

  9. Carnivore use of avocado orchards across an agricultural-wildland gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theresa M Nogeire

    Full Text Available Wide-ranging species cannot persist in reserves alone. Consequently, there is growing interest in the conservation value of agricultural lands that separate or buffer natural areas. The value of agricultural lands for wildlife habitat and connectivity varies as a function of the crop type and landscape context, and quantifying these differences will improve our ability to manage these lands more effectively for animals. In southern California, many species are present in avocado orchards, including mammalian carnivores. We examined occupancy of avocado orchards by mammalian carnivores across agricultural-wildland gradients in southern California with motion-activated cameras. More carnivore species were detected with cameras in orchards than in wildland sites, and for bobcats and gray foxes, orchards were associated with higher occupancy rates. Our results demonstrate that agricultural lands have potential to contribute to conservation by providing habitat or facilitating landscape connectivity.

  10. Carnivore use of avocado orchards across an agricultural-wildland gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nogeire, Theresa M.; Davis, Frank W.; Duggan, Jennifer M.; Crooks, Kevin R.; Boydston, Erin E.

    2013-01-01

    Wide-ranging species cannot persist in reserves alone. Consequently, there is growing interest in the conservation value of agricultural lands that separate or buffer natural areas. The value of agricultural lands for wildlife habitat and connectivity varies as a function of the crop type and landscape context, and quantifying these differences will improve our ability to manage these lands more effectively for animals. In southern California, many species are present in avocado orchards, including mammalian carnivores. We examined occupancy of avocado orchards by mammalian carnivores across agricultural-wildland gradients in southern California with motion-activated cameras. More carnivore species were detected with cameras in orchards than in wildland sites, and for bobcats and gray foxes, orchards were associated with higher occupancy rates. Our results demonstrate that agricultural lands have potential to contribute to conservation by providing habitat or facilitating landscape connectivity.

  11. Plants on the move: Towards common mechanisms governing mechanically-induced plant movements

    OpenAIRE

    Scorza, Livia Camilla Trevisan; Dornelas, Marcelo Carnier

    2011-01-01

    One may think that plants seem relatively immobile. Nevertheless, plants not only produce movement but these movements can be quite rapid such as the closing traps of carnivorous plants, the folding up of leaflets in some Leguminosae species and the movement of floral organs in order to increase cross pollination. We focus this review on thigmotropic and thigmonastic movements, both in vegetative and reproductive parts of higher plants. Ultrastructural studies revealed that most thigmotropic ...

  12. Stable Isotopes and Zooarchaeology at Teotihuacan, Mexico Reveal Earliest Evidence of Wild Carnivore Management in Mesoamerica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nawa Sugiyama

    Full Text Available From Roman gladiatorial combat to Egyptian animal mummies, the capture and manipulation of carnivores was instrumental in helping to shape social hierarchies throughout the ancient world. This paper investigates the historical inflection point when humans began to control animals not only as alimental resources but as ritual symbols and social actors in the New World. At Teotihuacan (A.D. 1-550, one of the largest pre-Hispanic cities, animal remains were integral components of ritual caches expressing state ideology and militarism during the construction of the Moon and the Sun Pyramids. The caches contain the remains of nearly 200 carnivorous animals, human sacrificial victims and other symbolic artifacts. This paper argues the presence of skeletal pathologies of infectious disease and injuries manifest on the carnivore remains show direct evidence of captivity. Stable isotope analysis (δ13C and δ15N of bones and teeth confirms that some of these carnivores were consuming high levels of C4 foods, likely reflecting a maize-based anthropocentric food chain. These results push back the antiquity of keeping captive carnivores for ritualistic purposes nearly 1000 years before the Spanish conquistadors described Moctezuma's zoo at the Aztec capital. Mirroring these documents the results indicate a select group of carnivores at Teotihuacan may have been fed maize-eating omnivores, such as dogs and humans. Unlike historical records, the present study provides the earliest and direct archaeological evidence for this practice in Mesoamerica. It also represents the first systematic isotopic exploration of a population of archaeological eagles (n = 24 and felids (n = 29.

  13. Stable Isotopes and Zooarchaeology at Teotihuacan, Mexico Reveal Earliest Evidence of Wild Carnivore Management in Mesoamerica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugiyama, Nawa; Somerville, Andrew D; Schoeninger, Margaret J

    2015-01-01

    From Roman gladiatorial combat to Egyptian animal mummies, the capture and manipulation of carnivores was instrumental in helping to shape social hierarchies throughout the ancient world. This paper investigates the historical inflection point when humans began to control animals not only as alimental resources but as ritual symbols and social actors in the New World. At Teotihuacan (A.D. 1-550), one of the largest pre-Hispanic cities, animal remains were integral components of ritual caches expressing state ideology and militarism during the construction of the Moon and the Sun Pyramids. The caches contain the remains of nearly 200 carnivorous animals, human sacrificial victims and other symbolic artifacts. This paper argues the presence of skeletal pathologies of infectious disease and injuries manifest on the carnivore remains show direct evidence of captivity. Stable isotope analysis (δ13C and δ15N) of bones and teeth confirms that some of these carnivores were consuming high levels of C4 foods, likely reflecting a maize-based anthropocentric food chain. These results push back the antiquity of keeping captive carnivores for ritualistic purposes nearly 1000 years before the Spanish conquistadors described Moctezuma's zoo at the Aztec capital. Mirroring these documents the results indicate a select group of carnivores at Teotihuacan may have been fed maize-eating omnivores, such as dogs and humans. Unlike historical records, the present study provides the earliest and direct archaeological evidence for this practice in Mesoamerica. It also represents the first systematic isotopic exploration of a population of archaeological eagles (n = 24) and felids (n = 29). PMID:26332042

  14. Locating Human-Wildlife Interactions: Landscape Constructions and Responses to Large Carnivore Conservation in India and Norway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunetro Ghosal

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available People′s reactions to large carnivores take many forms, ranging from support and coexistence to resistance and conflict. While these reactions are the outcome of many different factors, in this paper we specifically explore the link between social constructions of landscapes and divergent responses to large carnivore presence. We compare case studies from four different landscapes shared by people and large carnivores, in India and Norway. We use social construction of landscapes as a key concept to explore responses to large carnivores in the context of ecological, economic, social, and cultural changes in these areas. Based on this comparison, we argue that the process of change is complex, with a plurality of responses from the groups affected by it. The response to large carnivore presence is influenced by many different factors, of which the interpretation of change-particularly landscape change-plays a significant role.

  15. Hierarchical multi-species modeling of carnivore responses to hunting, habitat and prey in a West African protected area.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Cole Burton

    Full Text Available Protected areas (PAs are a cornerstone of global efforts to shield wildlife from anthropogenic impacts, yet their effectiveness at protecting wide-ranging species prone to human conflict--notably mammalian carnivores--is increasingly in question. An understanding of carnivore responses to human-induced and natural changes in and around PAs is critical not only to the conservation of threatened carnivore populations, but also to the effective protection of ecosystems in which they play key functional roles. However, an important challenge to assessing carnivore communities is the often infrequent and imperfect nature of survey detections. We applied a novel hierarchical multi-species occupancy model that accounted for detectability and spatial autocorrelation to data from 224 camera trap stations (sampled between October 2006 and January 2009 in order to test hypotheses about extrinsic influences on carnivore community dynamics in a West African protected area (Mole National Park, Ghana. We developed spatially explicit indices of illegal hunting activity, law enforcement patrol effort, prey biomass, and habitat productivity across the park, and used a Bayesian model selection framework to identify predictors of site occurrence for individual species and the entire carnivore community. Contrary to our expectation, hunting pressure and edge proximity did not have consistent, negative effects on occurrence across the nine carnivore species detected. Occurrence patterns for most species were positively associated with small prey biomass, and several species had either positive or negative associations with riverine forest (but not with other habitat descriptors. Influences of sampling design on carnivore detectability were also identified and addressed within our modeling framework (e.g., road and observer effects, and the multi-species approach facilitated inference on even the rarest carnivore species in the park. Our study provides insight for the

  16. Hierarchical multi-species modeling of carnivore responses to hunting, habitat and prey in a West African protected area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, A Cole; Sam, Moses K; Balangtaa, Cletus; Brashares, Justin S

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of global efforts to shield wildlife from anthropogenic impacts, yet their effectiveness at protecting wide-ranging species prone to human conflict--notably mammalian carnivores--is increasingly in question. An understanding of carnivore responses to human-induced and natural changes in and around PAs is critical not only to the conservation of threatened carnivore populations, but also to the effective protection of ecosystems in which they play key functional roles. However, an important challenge to assessing carnivore communities is the often infrequent and imperfect nature of survey detections. We applied a novel hierarchical multi-species occupancy model that accounted for detectability and spatial autocorrelation to data from 224 camera trap stations (sampled between October 2006 and January 2009) in order to test hypotheses about extrinsic influences on carnivore community dynamics in a West African protected area (Mole National Park, Ghana). We developed spatially explicit indices of illegal hunting activity, law enforcement patrol effort, prey biomass, and habitat productivity across the park, and used a Bayesian model selection framework to identify predictors of site occurrence for individual species and the entire carnivore community. Contrary to our expectation, hunting pressure and edge proximity did not have consistent, negative effects on occurrence across the nine carnivore species detected. Occurrence patterns for most species were positively associated with small prey biomass, and several species had either positive or negative associations with riverine forest (but not with other habitat descriptors). Influences of sampling design on carnivore detectability were also identified and addressed within our modeling framework (e.g., road and observer effects), and the multi-species approach facilitated inference on even the rarest carnivore species in the park. Our study provides insight for the conservation

  17. Appearent Digestibility of Plant Protein Based Diets by European Sea Bass Dicentrarchus labrax L., 1758

    OpenAIRE

    Altan, Özgür; Ali Yıldırım Korkut

    2011-01-01

    Commercial culture of carnivorous fish demands the reduction of environmental impact of feeds; that requires minimal use of dietary animal protein. This study investigated the digestibility of diets formulated exclusively out of plant protein, added rendered ingredients and feed attractants, by the carnivore European sea bass, Dicentrarchus labrax. Juvenile European sea bass (14.0±1.0 cm) conditioned to accept artificial dry feed were stocked in polypropylene cages and fed a...

  18. Transcriptome Analysis of Sarracenia, an Insectivorous Plant

    OpenAIRE

    Srivastava, Anuj; Rogers, Willie L.; Breton, Catherine M.; Cai, Liming; Malmberg, Russell L.

    2011-01-01

    Sarracenia species (pitcher plants) are carnivorous plants which obtain a portion of their nutrients from insects captured in the pitchers. To investigate these plants, we sequenced the transcriptome of two species, Sarracenia psittacina and Sarracenia purpurea, using Roche 454 pyrosequencing technology. We obtained 46 275 and 36 681 contigs by de novo assembly methods for S. psittacina and S. purpurea, respectively, and further identified 16 163 orthologous contigs between them. Estimation o...

  19. Trophic complexity and the adaptive value of damage-induced plant volatiles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian Kaplan

    Full Text Available Indirect plant defenses are those facilitating the action of carnivores in ridding plants of their herbivorous consumers, as opposed to directly poisoning or repelling them. Of the numerous and diverse indirect defensive strategies employed by plants, inducible volatile production has garnered the most fascination among plant-insect ecologists. These volatile chemicals are emitted in response to feeding by herbivorous arthropods and serve to guide predators and parasitic wasps to their prey. Implicit in virtually all discussions of plant volatile-carnivore interactions is the premise that plants "call for help" to bodyguards that serve to boost plant fitness by limiting herbivore damage. This, by necessity, assumes a three-trophic level food chain where carnivores benefit plants, a theoretical framework that is conceptually tractable and convenient, but poorly depicts the complexity of food-web dynamics occurring in real communities. Recent work suggests that hyperparasitoids, top consumers acting from the fourth trophic level, exploit the same plant volatile cues used by third trophic level carnivores. Further, hyperparasitoids shift their foraging preferences, specifically cueing in to the odor profile of a plant being damaged by a parasitized herbivore that contains their host compared with damage from an unparasitized herbivore. If this outcome is broadly representative of plant-insect food webs at large, it suggests that damage-induced volatiles may not always be beneficial to plants with major implications for the evolution of anti-herbivore defense and manipulating plant traits to improve biological control in agricultural crops.

  20. Comparative neuronal morphology of the cerebellar cortex in afrotherians, carnivores, cetartiodactyls, and primates

    OpenAIRE

    Bob Jacobs; Busisiwe C Maseko; Albert Lewandowski; Mary Ann Raghanti; Bridget Wicinski; William Hopkins; Bertelsen, Mads F; Timothy Walsh; Roger Reep; Sherwood, Chet C.

    2014-01-01

    Although the basic morphological characteristics of neurons in the cerebellar cortex have been documented in several species, virtually nothing is known about the quantitative morphological characteristics of these neurons across different taxa. To that end, the present study investigated cerebellar neuronal morphology among eight different, large-brained mammalian species comprising a broad phylogenetic range: afrotherians (African elephant, Florida manatee), carnivores (Siberian tiger, clo...

  1. Comparative neuronal morphology of the cerebellar cortex in afrotherians, carnivores, cetartiodactyls, and primates

    OpenAIRE

    Jacobs, Bob; Johnson, Nicholas L.; Wahl, Devin; Schall, Matthew; Busisiwe C Maseko; Lewandowski, Albert; Raghanti, Mary A.; Wicinski, Bridget; Butti, Camilla; Hopkins, William D.; Bertelsen, Mads F; Walsh, Timothy; Roberts, John R.; Reep, Roger L.; Hof, Patrick R

    2014-01-01

    Although the basic morphological characteristics of neurons in the cerebellar cortex have been documented in several species, virtually nothing is known about the quantitative morphological characteristics of these neurons across different taxa. To that end, the present study investigated cerebellar neuronal morphology among eight different, large-brained mammalian species comprising a broad phylogenetic range: afrotherians (African elephant, Florida manatee), carnivores (Siberian tiger, clou...

  2. Molecular characterization of canine kobuvirus in wild carnivores and the domestic dog in Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olarte-Castillo, Ximena A; Heeger, Felix; Mazzoni, Camila J; Greenwood, Alex D; Fyumagwa, Robert; Moehlman, Patricia D; Hofer, Heribert; East, Marion L

    2015-03-01

    Knowledge of Kobuvirus (Family Picornaviridae) infection in carnivores is limited and has not been described in domestic or wild carnivores in Africa. To fill this gap in knowledge we used RT-PCR to screen fresh feces from several African carnivores. We detected kobuvirus RNA in samples from domestic dog, golden jackal, side-striped jackal and spotted hyena. Using next generation sequencing we obtained one complete Kobuvirus genome sequence from each of these species. Our phylogenetic analyses revealed canine kobuvirus (CaKV) infection in all four species and placed CaKVs from Africa together and separately from CaKVs from elsewhere. Wild carnivore strains were more closely related to each other than to those from domestic dogs. We found that the secondary structure model of the IRES was similar to the Aichivirus-like IRES subclass and was conserved among African strains. We describe the first CaKVs from Africa and extend the known host range of CaKV. PMID:25667111

  3. Species-Specific Responses of Carnivores to Human-Induced Landscape Changes in Central Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caruso, Nicolás; Lucherini, Mauro; Fortin, Daniel; Casanave, Emma B.

    2016-01-01

    The role that mammalian carnivores play in ecosystems can be deeply altered by human-driven habitat disturbance. While most carnivore species are negatively affected, the impact of habitat changes is expected to depend on their ecological flexibility. We aimed to identify key factors affecting the habitat use by four sympatric carnivore species in landscapes of central Argentina. Camera trapping surveys were carried out at 49 sites from 2011 to 2013. Each site was characterized by 12 habitat attributes, including human disturbance and fragmentation. Four landscape gradients were created from Principal Component Analysis and their influence on species-specific habitat use was studied using Generalized Linear Models. We recorded 74 events of Conepatus chinga, 546 of Pseudalopex gymnocercus, 193 of Leopardus geoffroyi and 45 of Puma concolor. We found that the gradient describing sites away from urban settlements and with low levels of disturbance had the strongest influence. L. geoffroyi was the only species responding significantly to the four gradients and showing a positive response to modified habitats, which could be favored by the low level of persecution by humans. P. concolor made stronger use of most preserved sites with low proportion of cropland, even though the species also used sites with an intermediate level of fragmentation. A more flexible use of space was found for C. chinga and P. gymnocercus. Our results demonstrate that the impact of human activities spans across this guild of carnivores and that species-specific responses appear to be mediated by ecological and behavioral attributes. PMID:26950300

  4. Notes on some smaller carnivores from the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. G. L Mills

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available Notes on relative densities, habitat choice, food and foraging, social organisation and anti-predatory behaviour of certain small and medium-sized carnivores are presented. Possible mechanisms of niche separation and the evolution of different anti- predatory behaviours are briefly discussed.

  5. Nutrient-specific compensatory feeding in a mammalian carnivore, the mink, Neovison vison

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kim; Simpson, Stephen J; Nielsen, Vivi H;

    2014-01-01

    occurred for all the three macronutrients, including carbohydrate, which is particularly interesting as carbohydrate is not a major macronutrient for obligate carnivores in nature. However, there was also a ceiling to carbohydrate intake, as has been demonstrated previously in domestic cats. The results of...

  6. First report of Spirocerca sp. in Denmark – a tumor-inducing parasite in carnivores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Hansen, Mette Sif; Larsen, Gitte;

    2014-01-01

    During routine health surveillance of wild carnivores in Denmark, several tumors, measuring up to 3.0 x 4.5 x 2.5 cm, were detected in the stomach and the omentum of an autopsied red fox (Vulpes vulpes). The fox was hunted in the Hanstholm Nature Reserve, which is 230 km from the closest mainland...

  7. Locomotion and the Cost of Hunting in Large, Stealthy Marine Carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Terrie M; Fuiman, Lee A; Davis, Randall W

    2015-10-01

    Foraging by large (>25 kg), mammalian carnivores often entails cryptic tactics to surreptitiously locate and overcome highly mobile prey. Many forms of intermittent locomotion from stroke-and-glide maneuvers by marine mammals to sneak-and-pounce behaviors by terrestrial canids, ursids, and felids are involved. While affording proximity to vigilant prey, these tactics are also associated with unique energetic costs and benefits to the predator. We examined the energetic consequences of intermittent locomotion in mammalian carnivores and assessed the role of these behaviors in overall foraging efficiency. Behaviorally-linked, three-axis accelerometers were calibrated to provide instantaneous locomotor behaviors and associated energetic costs for wild adult Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) diving beneath the Antarctic ice. The results were compared with previously published values for other marine and terrestrial carnivores. We found that intermittent locomotion in the form of extended glides, burst-and-glide swimming, and rollercoaster maneuvers while hunting silverfish (Pleuragramma antarcticum) resulted in a marked energetic savings for the diving seals relative to continuously stroking. The cost of a foraging dive by the seals decreased by 9.2-59.6%, depending on the proportion of time gliding. These energetic savings translated into exceptionally low transport costs during hunting (COTHUNT) for diving mammals. COTHUNT for Weddell seals was nearly six times lower than predicted for large terrestrial carnivores, and demonstrates the importance of turning off the propulsive machinery to facilitate cost-efficient foraging in highly active, air-breathing marine predators. PMID:25936358

  8. A Ten-Year Molecular Survey on Parvoviruses Infecting Carnivores in Bulgaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filipov, C; Desario, C; Patouchas, O; Eftimov, P; Gruichev, G; Manov, V; Filipov, G; Buonavoglia, C; Decaro, N

    2016-08-01

    Parvoviruses represent the most important infectious agents that are responsible for severe to fatal disease in carnivores. This study reports the results of a 10-year molecular survey conducted on carnivores in Bulgaria (n = 344), including 262 dogs and 19 cats with gastroenteritis, and 57 hunted wild carnivores. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), followed by virus characterization by minor groove binder (MGB) probe assays, detected 216 parvovirus positive dogs with a predominance of canine parvovirus type 2a (CPV-2a, 79.17%) over CPV-2b (18.52%) and CPV-2c (2.31%). Rottweilers and German shepherds were the most frequent breeds among CPV-positive pedigree dogs (n = 96). Eighteen cats were found to shed parvoviruses in their faeces, with most strains being characterized as FPLV (n = 17), although a single specimen tested positive for CPV-2a. Only two wild carnivores were parvovirus positive, a wolf (Canis lupus) and a red fox (Vulpes vulpes), both being infected by CPV-2a strains. PMID:25382194

  9. Differential Habitat Use or Intraguild Interactions: What Structures a Carnivore Community?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gompper, Matthew E; Lesmeister, Damon B; Ray, Justina C; Malcolm, Jay R; Kays, Roland

    2016-01-01

    Differential habitat use and intraguild competition are both thought to be important drivers of animal population sizes and distributions. Habitat associations for individual species are well-established, and interactions between particular pairs of species have been highlighted in many focal studies. However, community-wide assessments of the relative strengths of these two factors have not been conducted. We built multi-scale habitat occupancy models for five carnivore taxa of New York's Adirondack landscape and assessed the relative performance of these models against ones in which co-occurrences of potentially competing carnivore species were also incorporated. Distribution models based on habitat performed well for all species. Black bear (Ursus americanus) and fisher (Martes pennanti) distribution was similar in that occupancy of both species was negatively associated with paved roads. However, black bears were also associated with larger forest fragments and fishers with smaller forest fragments. No models with habitat features were more supported than the null habitat model for raccoons (Procyon lotor). Martens (Martes americana) were most associated with increased terrain ruggedness and elevation. Weasel (Mustela spp.) occupancy increased with the cover of deciduous forest. For most species dyads habitat-only models were more supported than those models with potential competitors incorporated. The exception to this finding was for the smallest carnivore taxa (marten and weasel) where habitat plus coyote abundance models typically performed better than habitat-only models. Assessing this carnivore community as whole, we conclude that differential habitat use is more important than species interactions in maintaining the distribution and structure of this carnivore guild. PMID:26731404

  10. Differential Habitat Use or Intraguild Interactions: What Structures a Carnivore Community?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew E Gompper

    Full Text Available Differential habitat use and intraguild competition are both thought to be important drivers of animal population sizes and distributions. Habitat associations for individual species are well-established, and interactions between particular pairs of species have been highlighted in many focal studies. However, community-wide assessments of the relative strengths of these two factors have not been conducted. We built multi-scale habitat occupancy models for five carnivore taxa of New York's Adirondack landscape and assessed the relative performance of these models against ones in which co-occurrences of potentially competing carnivore species were also incorporated. Distribution models based on habitat performed well for all species. Black bear (Ursus americanus and fisher (Martes pennanti distribution was similar in that occupancy of both species was negatively associated with paved roads. However, black bears were also associated with larger forest fragments and fishers with smaller forest fragments. No models with habitat features were more supported than the null habitat model for raccoons (Procyon lotor. Martens (Martes americana were most associated with increased terrain ruggedness and elevation. Weasel (Mustela spp. occupancy increased with the cover of deciduous forest. For most species dyads habitat-only models were more supported than those models with potential competitors incorporated. The exception to this finding was for the smallest carnivore taxa (marten and weasel where habitat plus coyote abundance models typically performed better than habitat-only models. Assessing this carnivore community as whole, we conclude that differential habitat use is more important than species interactions in maintaining the distribution and structure of this carnivore guild.

  11. Geo-spatial aspects of acceptance of illegal hunting of large carnivores in Scandinavia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin E Gangaas

    Full Text Available Human-carnivore conflicts are complex and are influenced by: the spatial distribution of the conflict species; the organisation and intensity of management measures such as zoning; historical experience with wildlife; land use patterns; and local cultural traditions. We have used a geographically stratified sampling of social values and attitudes to provide a novel perspective to the human - wildlife conflict. We have focused on acceptance by and disagreements between residents (measured as Potential Conflict Index; PCI towards illegal hunting of four species of large carnivores (bear, lynx, wolf, wolverine. The study is based on surveys of residents in every municipality in Sweden and Norway who were asked their opinion on illegal hunting. Our results show how certain social values are associated with acceptance of poaching, and how these values differ geographically independent of carnivore abundance. Our approach differs from traditional survey designs, which are often biased towards urban areas. Although these traditional designs intend to be representative of a region (i.e. a random sample from a country, they tend to receive relatively few respondents from rural areas that experience the majority of conflict with carnivores. Acceptance of poaching differed significantly between Norway (12.7-15.7% of respondents and Sweden (3.3-4.1% of respondents. We found the highest acceptance of illegal hunting in rural areas with free-ranging sheep and strong hunting traditions. Disagreements between residents (as measured by PCI were highest in areas with intermediate population density. There was no correlation between carnivore density and either acceptance of illegal hunting or PCI. A strong positive correlation between acceptance of illegal hunting and PCI showed that areas with high acceptance of illegal hunting are areas with high potential conflict between people. Our results show that spatially-stratified surveys are required to reveal the

  12. Geo-spatial aspects of acceptance of illegal hunting of large carnivores in Scandinavia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangaas, Kristin E; Kaltenborn, Bjørn P; Andreassen, Harry P

    2013-01-01

    Human-carnivore conflicts are complex and are influenced by: the spatial distribution of the conflict species; the organisation and intensity of management measures such as zoning; historical experience with wildlife; land use patterns; and local cultural traditions. We have used a geographically stratified sampling of social values and attitudes to provide a novel perspective to the human - wildlife conflict. We have focused on acceptance by and disagreements between residents (measured as Potential Conflict Index; PCI) towards illegal hunting of four species of large carnivores (bear, lynx, wolf, wolverine). The study is based on surveys of residents in every municipality in Sweden and Norway who were asked their opinion on illegal hunting. Our results show how certain social values are associated with acceptance of poaching, and how these values differ geographically independent of carnivore abundance. Our approach differs from traditional survey designs, which are often biased towards urban areas. Although these traditional designs intend to be representative of a region (i.e. a random sample from a country), they tend to receive relatively few respondents from rural areas that experience the majority of conflict with carnivores. Acceptance of poaching differed significantly between Norway (12.7-15.7% of respondents) and Sweden (3.3-4.1% of respondents). We found the highest acceptance of illegal hunting in rural areas with free-ranging sheep and strong hunting traditions. Disagreements between residents (as measured by PCI) were highest in areas with intermediate population density. There was no correlation between carnivore density and either acceptance of illegal hunting or PCI. A strong positive correlation between acceptance of illegal hunting and PCI showed that areas with high acceptance of illegal hunting are areas with high potential conflict between people. Our results show that spatially-stratified surveys are required to reveal the large scale

  13. Big cats in our backyards: persistence of large carnivores in a human dominated landscape in India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vidya Athreya

    Full Text Available Protected areas are extremely important for the long term viability of biodiversity in a densely populated country like India where land is a scarce resource. However, protected areas cover only 5% of the land area in India and in the case of large carnivores that range widely, human use landscapes will function as important habitats required for gene flow to occur between protected areas. In this study, we used photographic capture recapture analysis to assess the density of large carnivores in a human-dominated agricultural landscape with density >300 people/km(2 in western Maharashtra, India. We found evidence of a wide suite of wild carnivores inhabiting a cropland landscape devoid of wilderness and wild herbivore prey. Furthermore, the large carnivores; leopard (Panthera pardus and striped hyaena (Hyaena hyaena occurred at relatively high density of 4.8±1.2 (sd adults/100 km(2 and 5.03±1.3 (sd adults/100 km(2 respectively. This situation has never been reported before where 10 large carnivores/100 km(2 are sharing space with dense human populations in a completely modified landscape. Human attacks by leopards were rare despite a potentially volatile situation considering that the leopard has been involved in serious conflict, including human deaths in adjoining areas. The results of our work push the frontiers of our understanding of the adaptability of both, humans and wildlife to each other's presence. The results also highlight the urgent need to shift from a PA centric to a landscape level conservation approach, where issues are more complex, and the potential for conflict is also very high. It also highlights the need for a serious rethink of conservation policy, law and practice where the current management focus is restricted to wildlife inside Protected Areas.

  14. Big cats in our backyards: persistence of large carnivores in a human dominated landscape in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athreya, Vidya; Odden, Morten; Linnell, John D C; Krishnaswamy, Jagdish; Karanth, Ullas

    2013-01-01

    Protected areas are extremely important for the long term viability of biodiversity in a densely populated country like India where land is a scarce resource. However, protected areas cover only 5% of the land area in India and in the case of large carnivores that range widely, human use landscapes will function as important habitats required for gene flow to occur between protected areas. In this study, we used photographic capture recapture analysis to assess the density of large carnivores in a human-dominated agricultural landscape with density >300 people/km(2) in western Maharashtra, India. We found evidence of a wide suite of wild carnivores inhabiting a cropland landscape devoid of wilderness and wild herbivore prey. Furthermore, the large carnivores; leopard (Panthera pardus) and striped hyaena (Hyaena hyaena) occurred at relatively high density of 4.8±1.2 (sd) adults/100 km(2) and 5.03±1.3 (sd) adults/100 km(2) respectively. This situation has never been reported before where 10 large carnivores/100 km(2) are sharing space with dense human populations in a completely modified landscape. Human attacks by leopards were rare despite a potentially volatile situation considering that the leopard has been involved in serious conflict, including human deaths in adjoining areas. The results of our work push the frontiers of our understanding of the adaptability of both, humans and wildlife to each other's presence. The results also highlight the urgent need to shift from a PA centric to a landscape level conservation approach, where issues are more complex, and the potential for conflict is also very high. It also highlights the need for a serious rethink of conservation policy, law and practice where the current management focus is restricted to wildlife inside Protected Areas. PMID:23483933

  15. Vegetation analysis of two insectivorous plants in Padang Pinang Anyang, Belitung Island

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TATANG

    2003-07-01

    Full Text Available Nepenthes gracilis and Drocera burmannii are rare species, found at Padang Pinang Anyang, Belitung island . These unique plants are also known as insectivorous species. Field observation was conducted on June, 2002. The number of population of N. gracilis and D.burmanii as well as identification of plants associated with have been carried out. Six transects, 50 x 5 m2 in each transect were established, of which one transect consists of 10 small 5 x 5 m2 plots. All plant species in plots were identified. The degree association is computed by contingency table 2x2 while distribution type is considered by variant. As the result, 19 species have recorded including grass species (44%, shrub (28%, tree (19%, and insectivorous plants (9%. The important value index (IVI of N. gracilis 1.98, and D. burmannii 0.99.

  16. Experimental Manipulation of Grassland Plant Diversity Induces Complex Shifts in Aboveground Arthropod Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertzog, Lionel R.; Meyer, Sebastian T.; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Ebeling, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Changes in producer diversity cause multiple changes in consumer communities through various mechanisms. However, past analyses investigating the relationship between plant diversity and arthropod consumers focused only on few aspects of arthropod diversity, e.g. species richness and abundance. Yet, shifts in understudied facets of arthropod diversity like relative abundances or species dominance may have strong effects on arthropod-mediated ecosystem functions. Here we analyze the relationship between plant species richness and arthropod diversity using four complementary diversity indices, namely: abundance, species richness, evenness (equitability of the abundance distribution) and dominance (relative abundance of the dominant species). Along an experimental gradient of plant species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species), we sampled herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods using pitfall traps and suction sampling during a whole vegetation period. We tested whether plant species richness affects consumer diversity directly (i), or indirectly through increased productivity (ii). Further, we tested the impact of plant community composition on arthropod diversity by testing for the effects of plant functional groups (iii). Abundance and species richness of both herbivores and carnivores increased with increasing plant species richness, but the underlying mechanisms differed between the two trophic groups. While higher species richness in herbivores was caused by an increase in resource diversity, carnivore richness was driven by plant productivity. Evenness of herbivore communities did not change along the gradient in plant species richness, whereas evenness of carnivores declined. The abundance of dominant herbivore species showed no response to changes in plant species richness, but the dominant carnivores were more abundant in species-rich plant communities. The functional composition of plant communities had small impacts on herbivore communities, whereas

  17. Carnivore specific bone bioapatite and collagen carbon isotope fractionations: Case studies of modern and fossil grey wolf populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox-Dobbs, K.; Wheatley, P. V.; Koch, P. L.

    2006-12-01

    Stable isotope analyses of modern and fossil biogenic tissues are routinely used to reconstruct present and past vertebrate foodwebs. Accurate isotopic dietary reconstructions require a consumer and tissue specific understanding of how isotopes are sorted, or fractionated, between trophic levels. In this project we address the need for carnivore specific isotope variables derived from populations that are ecologically well- characterized. Specifically, we investigate the trophic difference in carbon isotope values between mammalian carnivore (wolf) bone bioapatite and herbivore (prey) bone bioapatite. We also compare bone bioapatite and collagen carbon isotope values collected from the same individuals. We analyzed bone specimens from two modern North American grey wolf (Canis lupus) populations (Isle Royale National Park, Michigan and Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming), and the ungulate herbivores that are their primary prey (moose and elk, respectively). Because the diets of both wolf populations are essentially restricted to a single prey species, there were no confounding effects due to carnivore diet variability. We measured a trophic difference of approximately -1.3 permil between carnivore (lower value) and herbivore (higher value) bone bioapatite carbon isotope values, and an average inter-tissue difference of 5.1 permil between carnivore bone collagen (lower value) and bioapatite (higher value) carbon isotope values. Both of these isotopic differences differ from previous estimates derived from a suite of African carnivores; our carnivore-herbivore bone bioapatite carbon isotope spacing is smaller (-1.3 vs. -4.0 permil), and our carnivore collagen-bioapatite carbon difference is larger (5.1 vs. 3.0 permil). These discrepancies likely result from comparing values measured from a single hypercarnivore (wolf) to average values calculated from several carnivore species, some of which are insectivorous or partly omnivorous. The trophic and inter

  18. Urban domestic dog populations as a source of canine distemper virus for wild carnivores in the Coquimbo region of Chile

    OpenAIRE

    Acosta-Jamett, G.; Chalmers, W.S.K.; Cunningham, A.A.; Cleaveland, S.; Handel, I.G.; Bronsvoort, B.M.DeC.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Urban areas can support dog populations dense enough to maintain canine distemper virus (CDV) and can be a source of infection for rural dogs and free-ranging carnivores. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationships between urban and rural domestic dog and wild carnivore populations and their effects on the epidemiology of CDV to explain retrospectively a CD outbreak in wild foxes in 2003. From 2005 to 2007 a cross-sectional household questionnaire survey was...

  19. Human-carnivore conflict over livestock in the eastern Serengeti ecosystem with special emphasis on African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus)

    OpenAIRE

    Lyamuya, Richard Daniel

    2011-01-01

    AbstractHuman-carnivore conflict is currently one of the main constraints to biodiversity conservation efforts outside many protected areas worldwide. A survey of livestock depredation caused by wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) and other wild carnivore species in the Maasai and Sonjo areas outside Serengeti National Park, Tanzania over two periods between 2007/09 and 2010 using different methodologies indicated a high level of conflict. The conflict related to African wild dogs proved the most signi...

  20. PREVALENCE OF ANTIBODIES TO SELECTED VIRUSES AND PARASITES IN INTRODUCED AND ENDEMIC CARNIVORES IN WESTERN MADAGASCAR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pomerantz, Julie; Rasambainarivo, Fidisoa T; Dollar, Luke; Rahajanirina, Leon Pierrot; Andrianaivoarivelo, Radosoa; Parker, Patricia; Dubovi, Edward

    2016-07-01

    Introduced animals impact endemic populations through predation, competition, and disease transmission. Populations of endemic carnivores in Madagascar are declining, and pathogens transmitted from introduced species may further endanger these unique species. We assessed the exposure of introduced and endemic carnivores to common viral and parasitic pathogens in two national parks of Madagascar (Kirindy Mitea National Park and Ankarafantsika National Park) and their neighboring villages. We also identified variables associated with the presence of antibodies to these pathogens in fosa ( Cryptoprocta ferox ). Introduced and endemic species were exposed to canine parvovirus, canine herpesvirus, feline calicivirus, and Toxoplasma gondii . Domestic dogs ( Canis familiaris ) and cats ( Felis catus ) may be sources of infection for these pathogens. Prevalence of antibodies to Toxoplasma in captured fosa was >93%, and adults were more likely to be exposed than immature individuals. Our data provide a basis upon which to evaluate and manage risks of pathogen transmission between species. PMID:27195685

  1. On the horizon for fertility preservation in domestic and wild carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comizzoli, P; Wildt, D E

    2012-12-01

    Innovations are emerging from the growing field of fertility preservation for humans and laboratory animals that are relevant to protecting and propagating valuable domestic and wild carnivores. These extend beyond the 'classical' approaches associated with sperm, oocyte and embryo freezing to include gonadal tissue preservation combined with in vitro culture or xenografting, all of which have potential for rescuing vast amounts of unused and wasted germplasm. Here, we review approaches under development and predicted to have applied value within the next decade, including the following: (i) direct use of early-stage gametes for in vitro fertilization; (ii) generation of more mature gametes from gonadal tissue or stem cells; (iii) simplification, enhanced safety and efficacy of cryopreservation methods; and (iv) biostabilization of living cells and tissues at ambient temperatures. We believe that all of these fertility preservation strategies will offer knowledge and tools to better manage carnivores that serve as human companions, valuable biomedical models or require assistance to reverse endangerment. PMID:23279514

  2. Megaherbivores as pacemakers of carnivore diversity and biomass: distributing or sinking trophic energy

    OpenAIRE

    Hummel, J; M Clauss

    2008-01-01

    Question: What is the trophic role of megaherbivores? Hypothesis: Depending on their life histories, megaherbivores can either act as sinks or distributors of trophic energy. Methods: Comparative review of mammal and dinosaur faunas, and aspects of their reproductive biology. Conclusion: Extant (mammalian) megaherbivore populations represent trophic sinks that potentially limit carnivore diversity and productivity, because they are immune to predation and follow a reproductive strate...

  3. Thelazia callipaeda in wild carnivores from Romania: new host and geographical records

    OpenAIRE

    Mihalca, Andrei Daniel; Ionică, Angela Monica; D’Amico, Gianluca; Daskalaki, Aikaterini Alexandra; Deak, Georgiana; Matei, Ioana Adriana; Șimonca, Vasile; Iordache, Daniel; Modrý, David; Gherman, Călin Mircea

    2016-01-01

    Background Thelazia callipaeda is a vector-borne zoonotic nematode parasitizing the conjunctival sac of domestic and wild carnivores, rabbits and humans, with a vast distribution in Asia and the former Soviet Union. In Europe, the nematode has an emerging trend, being reported in Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Romania, Greece and Serbia, with human cases known in Italy, France, Spain, Serbia and Croatia. In Romania, the infection was so ...

  4. Mapping trends of large and medium size carnivores of conservation interest in Romania

    OpenAIRE

    Mihai Cristian Adamescu; Constantin Cazacu; Ovidiu Ionescu; Georgeta Ionescu; Ramon Jurj; Marius Popa; Roxana Cazacu; Ancuta Cotovelea

    2014-01-01

    We analysed yearly estimates of population size data during 2001-2012 for five carnivores species of conservation interest (Ursus arctos, Canis lupus, Lynx lynx, Felis silvestris and Canis aureus). Population size estimations were done by the game management authorities and integrated by the competent authorities on the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. Trends in data were detected using non-parametric Mann-Kendall test. This test was chosen considering the short length of data seri...

  5. Book review: Large carnivore conservation: Integrating science and policy in the North American West

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albertsen, A. J.; Cox, M. M.; Ernst, E. E.; Haley, H. J.; Klaver, Robert W.; Loney, D. A.; Mackert, M. M.; McCombs, A. L.; Piatscheck, F.; Pocius, V. M.; Stein, D. S.

    2016-01-01

    Dr. Klaver reviewed Large Carnivore Conservation as part of a graduate seminar and seminar participants represented the full range of readers who might be interested in the book: natural resource managers, citizen advocates, researchers, and students. Although we encountered a variety of opinions based on our different backgrounds and orientations, we discovered a surprising amount of consensus both about what the book does well and where it falls short of our expectations.

  6. Conservation of the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus): carnivore and people relationships in the southeast of Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    Consorte-McCrea, A.

    2011-01-01

    Maned wolves are endangered carnivores endemic to Brazil. This research aimed to compare the attitudes of interest groups towards the conservation of the maned wolf in urban and rural areas; to investigate how such attitudes may influence the maned wolf's status and conservation; and to recommend ways to incorporate such knowledge into strategies to conserve both wolf and habitat. The methodology used questionnaires and interviews. Questionnaires targeted people living in the neighbourhoo...

  7. Blood does not buy goodwill: allowing culling increases poaching of a large carnivore

    OpenAIRE

    Chapron, Guillaume; Treves, Adrian

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying environmental crime and the effectiveness of policy interventions is difficult because perpetrators typically conceal evidence. To prevent illegal uses of natural resources, such as poaching endangered species, governments have advocated granting policy flexibility to local authorities by liberalizing culling or hunting of large carnivores. We present the first quantitative evaluation of the hypothesis that liberalizing culling will reduce poaching and improve population status of...

  8. Diet Composition and Digestive Enzymes Activity in Carnivorous Fishes Inhabiting Mudflats of Indian Sundarban Estuaries

    OpenAIRE

    Chaudhuri, Atreyee; Mukherjee, Sudeshna; HOMECHAUDHURI, Sumit

    2012-01-01

    Intertidal mudflats occupy a significant component of the total estuarine habitat available to fishes as nursery and foraging grounds. In this study, fifteen sites were randomly explored along three estuarine rivers in Indian Sundarbans and 27 fish species, were recorded. Upon analysis of prey preferences, they were categorized into different trophic types. A comparative study of the digestive physiology of 10 carnivorous species as functional analogues was carried out in order to find ou...

  9. Carnivores from the mexican state of Puebla: Distribution, taxonomy, and conservation

    OpenAIRE

    José Ramírez-Pulido; Noé González-Ruiz; Genoways, Hugh H.

    2005-01-01

    We examined 96 museum specimens belonging to 14 species of Carnivora from the Mexican State of Puebla. In addition, four species were documented based on literature records and by indirect evidence. The carnivorous mammals of Puebla belong to 5 families, 18 genera, 18 species and 23 subspecies. Eight of these 23 taxa are reported herein for the first time from the state of Puebla. Of the 18 species, Herpailurus yagouaroundi, Lontra longicaudis, Taxidea taxus, and Galictis vittata are consider...

  10. The First Sequenced Carnivore Genome Shows Complex Host-Endogenous Retrovirus Relationships

    OpenAIRE

    Álvaro Martínez Barrio; Marie Ekerljung; Patric Jern; Farid Benachenhou; Sperber, Göran O.; Erik Bongcam-Rudloff; Jonas Blomberg; Göran Andersson

    2011-01-01

    Host-retrovirus interactions influence the genomic landscape and have contributed substantially to mammalian genome evolution. To gain further insights, we analyzed a female boxer (Canis familiaris) genome for complexity and integration pattern of canine endogenous retroviruses (CfERV). Intriguingly, the first such in-depth analysis of a carnivore species identified 407 CfERV proviruses that represent only 0.15% of the dog genome. In comparison, the same detection criteria identified about si...

  11. Scent-marking and intrasexual competition in a cooperative carnivore with low reproductive skew

    OpenAIRE

    Müller, C. A.; Manser, M B

    2008-01-01

    Most mammals scent-mark and a variety of hypotheses have been put forward to explain this behaviour. Differences in the main function of scent-marking between species are likely to be related to differences in social systems. Here, we investigate the functions of scent-marking in a cooperatively breeding carnivore. In the banded mongoose (Mungos mungo), individuals of both sexes commonly breed in their natal group and reproductive skew within groups is low. Using experimental scent-mark prese...

  12. Conflict Misleads Large Carnivore Management and Conservation: Brown Bears and Wolves in Spain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Fernández-Gil

    Full Text Available Large carnivores inhabiting human-dominated landscapes often interact with people and their properties, leading to conflict scenarios that can mislead carnivore management and, ultimately, jeopardize conservation. In northwest Spain, brown bears Ursus arctos are strictly protected, whereas sympatric wolves Canis lupus are subject to lethal control. We explored ecological, economic and societal components of conflict scenarios involving large carnivores and damages to human properties. We analyzed the relation between complaints of depredations by bears and wolves on beehives and livestock, respectively, and bear and wolf abundance, livestock heads, number of culled wolves, amount of paid compensations, and media coverage. We also evaluated the efficiency of wolf culling to reduce depredations on livestock. Bear damages to beehives correlated positively to the number of female bears with cubs of the year. Complaints of wolf predation on livestock were unrelated to livestock numbers; instead, they correlated positively to the number of wild ungulates harvested during the previous season, the number of wolf packs, and to wolves culled during the previous season. Compensations for wolf complaints were fivefold higher than for bears, but media coverage of wolf damages was thirtyfold higher. Media coverage of wolf damages was unrelated to the actual costs of wolf damages, but the amount of news correlated positively to wolf culling. However, wolf culling was followed by an increase in compensated damages. Our results show that culling of the wolf population failed in its goal of reducing damages, and suggest that management decisions are at least partly mediated by press coverage. We suggest that our results provide insight to similar scenarios, where several species of large carnivores share the landscape with humans, and management may be reactive to perceived conflicts.

  13. Periodontal disease diagnosis in a group of captive native carnivores at Jaime Duque Zoo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viviana Vásquez C.

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available A diagnose of periodontal diseases was performed in 12 species of carnivores at Jaime Duque Zoo. 23 animals were sampled under different general anesthesia protocols. A protocol of the oral cavity examination was designed and implemented, making emphasis in the periodontal anomalies. 16 of the 23 individuals presented periodontal disease. A microbiological culture was performed from the oral cavity of 9 individuals, this results indicated mostly normal bacterial flora.

  14. Toward Human-Carnivore Coexistence: Understanding Tolerance for Tigers in Bangladesh

    OpenAIRE

    Inskip, Chloe; Carter, Neil; Riley, Shawn; Roberts, Thomas; MacMillan, Douglas C.

    2016-01-01

    Fostering local community tolerance for endangered carnivores, such as tigers (Panthera tigris), is a core component of many conservation strategies. Identification of antecedents of tolerance will facilitate the development of effective tolerance-building conservation action and secure local community support for, and involvement in, conservation initiatives. We use a stated preference approach for measuring tolerance, based on the ‘Wildlife Stakeholder Acceptance Capacity’ concept, to explo...

  15. Carnivore Competition and Resource use in the Serengeti Ecosystem of Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Frame, George Walter

    1986-01-01

    Coexisting ungulate-eating carnivores--lion, spotted hyena, cheetah, leopard, African wild dog, black-backed jackal, common jackal, and six species of vulture--are examined in East Africa's Serengeti ecosystem. Niche similarities year-round, by season, and by location are described using food, habitat, time of hunting, and other variables. Intraspecific niches of cheetah sex, age, and social groups show that male coalitions differ most from the others in hunting behavior and habitat use. Test...

  16. Influence of landscape characteristics on carnivore diversity and abundance in Mediterranean farmland

    OpenAIRE

    Pita, Ricardo; Mira, António; Moreira, Francisco; Morgado, Rui; Beja, Pedro

    2009-01-01

    Predation is increasingly pointed out as one of the factors contributing to population declines of ground-nesting farmland birds, though it remains poorly understood how ongoing transformations of agricultural landscapes affect predator assemblages. This study addressed this issue, estimating the contribution of landscape composition and configuration to spatial variation in species richness and abundances of mammalian carnivores across a gradient of agricultural intensific...

  17. Assessing the Potential Threat Landscape of a Proposed Reintroduction Site for Carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    Page, Samantha K.; Parker, Daniel M; Peinke, Dean M.; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T

    2015-01-01

    This study provides a framework to assess the feasibility of reintroducing carnivores into an area, using African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) as an example. The Great Fish River Nature Reserve in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa, has been identified as a potential reserve to reintroduce wild dogs, and we applied this framework to provide a threat assessment of the surrounding area to determine potential levels of human-wildlife conflict. Although 56% of neighbouring landowners and local ...

  18. Geo-Spatial Aspects of Acceptance of Illegal Hunting of Large Carnivores in Scandinavia

    OpenAIRE

    Kristin E Gangaas; Kaltenborn, Bjørn P.; Andreassen, Harry P.

    2013-01-01

    Human-carnivore conflicts are complex and are influenced by: the spatial distribution of the conflict species; the organisation and intensity of management measures such as zoning; historical experience with wildlife; land use patterns; and local cultural traditions. We have used a geographically stratified sampling of social values and attitudes to provide a novel perspective to the human – wildlife conflict. We have focused on acceptance by and disagreements between residents (m...

  19. Development of new stem cell-based technologies for carnivore reproduction research

    OpenAIRE

    Alexander J Travis; Kim, Yeunhee; Meyers-Wallen, Vicki

    2009-01-01

    New reproductive technologies based on stem cells offer several potential benefits to carnivore species. For example, development of lines of embryonic stem cells in cats and dogs would allow for the generation of transgenic animal models, which could be used to advance both veterinary and human health. Techniques such as spermatogonial stem cell transplantation and testis xenografting offer new approaches to propagate genetically valuable individual males, even if they should die before prod...

  20. PCR detection of Neospora caninum, Toxoplasma gondii and Encephalitozoon cuniculi in brains of wild carnivores

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hůrková, L.; Modrý, David

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 137, 1/2 (2006), s. 150-154. ISSN 0304-4017 R&D Projects: GA ČR GD524/03/H133 Grant ostatní: MŠk(CZ) FRVŠ 1494/2004 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : Neospora * Encephalitozoon * carnivores Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.900, year: 2006

  1. A Survey of Trichinella spiralis in Wild Carnivores in Southwestern Quebec

    OpenAIRE

    Bourque, Michel

    1985-01-01

    In 1982-1983, 144 muscle samples from 11 different species of wild carnivores from southwestern Quebec, Canada, were examined for the presence of Trichinella spiralis larvae, using direct microscopic examination and the peptic digestion method. Two red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) (out of 29) and one pine marten (Martes americana) (out of 56) were found positive, giving a 2.1% prevalence for the whole sample.

  2. A semi-aquatic Arctic mammalian carnivore from the Miocene epoch and origin of Pinnipedia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rybczynski, Natalia; Dawson, Mary R; Tedford, Richard H

    2009-04-23

    Modern pinnipeds (seals, sea lions and the walrus) are semi-aquatic, generally marine carnivores the limbs of which have been modified into flippers. Recent phylogenetic studies using morphological and molecular evidence support pinniped monophyly, and suggest a sister relationship with ursoids (for example bears) or musteloids (the clade that includes skunks, badgers, weasels and otters). Although the position of pinnipeds within modern carnivores appears moderately well resolved, fossil evidence of the morphological steps leading from a terrestrial ancestor to the modern marine forms has been weak or contentious. The earliest well-represented fossil pinniped is Enaliarctos, a marine form with flippers, which had appeared on the northwestern shores of North America by the early Miocene epoch. Here we report the discovery of a nearly complete skeleton of a new semi-aquatic carnivore from an early Miocene lake deposit in Nunavut, Canada, that represents a morphological link in early pinniped evolution. The new taxon retains a long tail and the proportions of its fore- and hindlimbs are more similar to those of modern terrestrial carnivores than to modern pinnipeds. Morphological traits indicative of semi-aquatic adaptation include a forelimb with a prominent deltopectoral ridge on the humerus, a posterodorsally expanded scapula, a pelvis with relatively short ilium, a shortened femur and flattened phalanges, suggestive of webbing. The new fossil shows evidence of pinniped affinities and similarities to the early Oligocene Amphicticeps from Asia and the late Oligocene and Miocene Potamotherium from Europe. The discovery suggests that the evolution of pinnipeds included a freshwater transitional phase, and may support the hypothesis that the Arctic was an early centre of pinniped evolution. PMID:19396145

  3. First findings and prevalence of adult heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis) in wild carnivores from Serbia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penezić, Aleksandra; Selaković, Sanja; Pavlović, Ivan; Ćirović, Duško

    2014-09-01

    Heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) is a parasitic roundworm that causes a zoonotic disease known as dirofilariosis. Little is known about the role of wild carnivores serving as reservoirs in nature. Therefore, we examined 738 hearts and lungs of free ranging wild carnivores from Serbia to determine the presence of adult heartworms. During the period 2009-2013, the prevalence in golden jackals (Canis aureus) was 7.32%, in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) 1.55%, in wolves (Canis lupus) 1.43%, and in wild cats (Felis silvestris) 7.69%. No adult heartworm specimens were found in beech martens (Martes foina), stone martens (Martes martes), European polecats (Mustela putorius), badgers (Meles meles) or otter (Lutra lutra). The highest recorded prevalence was in 2013 (7.30%) and the lowest in 2012 (1.6%). In jackals, the prevalence was higher in males (10%) than in females (4.06%), while in foxes the prevalence was 1.75% in males and 1.26% in females. The most infected host was a wolf in which 37 adult specimens were found. Because of the potentially significant role in the life cycle of D. immitis, populations of wild carnivores in Europe should be further examined and tested for heartworm infections. PMID:24951168

  4. The carnivore remains from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, N; Arsuaga, J L; Torres, T

    1997-01-01

    Remains of carnivores from the Sima de los Huesos site representing at least 158 adult individuals of a primitive (i.e., not very speleoid) form of Ursus deningeri Von Reichenau 1906, have been recovered through the 1995 field season. These new finds extend our knowledge of this group in the Sierra de Atapuerca Middle Pleistocene. Material previously classified as Cuoninae indet, is now assigned to Canis lupus and a third metatarsal assigned in 1987 to Panthera of gombaszoegensis, is in our opinion only attributable to Panthera sp. The family Mustelidae is added to the faunal list and includes Martes sp. and a smaller species. The presence of Panthera leo cf. fossilis, Lynx pardina spelaea and Felis silvestris, is confirmed. The presence of a not very speloid Ursus deningeri, together with the rest of the carnivore assemblage, points to a not very late Middle Pleistocene age, i.e., oxygen isotope stage 7 or older. Relative frequencies of skeletal elements for the bear and fox samples are without major biases. The age structure of the bear sample, based on dental wear stages, does not follow the typical hibernation mortality profile and resembles a catastrophic profile. The site was not a natal or refuge den. The hypothesis that the site was a natural trap is the most plausible. If the Sima de los Huesos functioned as a natural trap (without an egress out), the human accumulation cannot be attributed to carnivore: activities and must be explained differently. PMID:9300340

  5. Human attacks by large felid carnivores in captivity and in the wild.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, Suzanne M; Mills, Angela; Shoff, William H

    2014-06-01

    Whereas those who live in the native ranges of the large feline carnivores are well aware of the risks of cat and human encounters, North Americans and Europeans are increasingly exposed to exotic animals through travel, ecotourism, leisure pursuits in rural areas, occupational exposure, zoo and animal park visits, wild habitat encroachment at the urban-wildlands interface, and contact with exotic pets. In encounters during which persons have been severely injured, lapses in animal management protocols, lack of appropriate adult supervision, and intoxication have been reported. Unlike common domestic pets that have lived in close association with humans for thousands of years, no matter where individual large felines may have been raised, they remain wild carnivores with strong prey-drive and territorial instincts. The emergency management of large felid attacks is similar to that of other major trauma: stabilization; management of significant orthopedic, neurologic, vascular, and soft tissue injuries; antibiotic coverage provided for the number of organisms that inhabit their mouths and the potential for tetanus and rabies; and early management in survivors of likely posttraumatic stress disorder. We must actively explore responsible measures globally that can be taken to ensure biologically appropriate, ethical, safe, and sustainable conservation of these large carnivores in both their natural habitats and captivity. PMID:24864068

  6. Managing the carnivore comeback: assessing the adaptive capacity of the Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx) to cohabit with humans in shared landscapes

    OpenAIRE

    Bouyer, Yaëlle

    2015-01-01

    Conflicts between humans and large carnivores are one of the most visible examples of the challenges that arise when seeking to achieve coexistence between humans and wildlife. With their large spatial requirements and predatory behavior, large carnivores are among the most difficult species to preserve in our modern day landscapes. Although large carnivores are usually considered as the epitomes of wilderness, because of human population growth and habitat fragmenta...

  7. Insects as a Nitrogen Source for Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J. Bidochka

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Many plants have evolved adaptations in order to survive in low nitrogen environments. One of the best-known adaptations is that of plant symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria; this is the major route by which nitrogen is incorporated into plant biomass. A portion of this plant-associated nitrogen is then lost to insects through herbivory, and insects represent a nitrogen reservoir that is generally overlooked in nitrogen cycles. In this review we show three specialized plant adaptations that allow for the recovery of insect nitrogen; that is, plants gaining nitrogen from insects. First, we show specialized adaptations by carnivorous plants in low nitrogen habitats. Insect carnivorous plants such as pitcher plants and sundews (Nepenthaceae/Sarraceniaceae and Drosera respectively are able to obtain substantial amounts of nitrogen from the insects that they capture. Secondly, numerous plants form associations with mycorrhizal fungi that can provide soluble nitrogen from the soil, some of which may be insect-derived nitrogen, obtained from decaying insects or insect frass. Finally, a specialized group of endophytic, insect-pathogenic fungi (EIPF provide host plants with insect-derived nitrogen. These soil-inhabiting fungi form a remarkable symbiosis with certain plant species. They can infect a wide range of insect hosts and also form endophytic associations in which they transfer insect-derived nitrogen to the plant. Root colonizing fungi are found in disparate fungal phylogenetic lineages, indicating possible convergent evolutionary strategies between taxa, evolution potentially driven by access to carbon-containing root exudates.

  8. Insects as a Nitrogen Source for Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behie, Scott W; Bidochka, Michael J

    2013-01-01

    Many plants have evolved adaptations in order to survive in low nitrogen environments. One of the best-known adaptations is that of plant symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria; this is the major route by which nitrogen is incorporated into plant biomass. A portion of this plant-associated nitrogen is then lost to insects through herbivory, and insects represent a nitrogen reservoir that is generally overlooked in nitrogen cycles. In this review we show three specialized plant adaptations that allow for the recovery of insect nitrogen; that is, plants gaining nitrogen from insects. First, we show specialized adaptations by carnivorous plants in low nitrogen habitats. Insect carnivorous plants such as pitcher plants and sundews (Nepenthaceae/Sarraceniaceae and Drosera respectively) are able to obtain substantial amounts of nitrogen from the insects that they capture. Secondly, numerous plants form associations with mycorrhizal fungi that can provide soluble nitrogen from the soil, some of which may be insect-derived nitrogen, obtained from decaying insects or insect frass. Finally, a specialized group of endophytic, insect-pathogenic fungi (EIPF) provide host plants with insect-derived nitrogen. These soil-inhabiting fungi form a remarkable symbiosis with certain plant species. They can infect a wide range of insect hosts and also form endophytic associations in which they transfer insect-derived nitrogen to the plant. Root colonizing fungi are found in disparate fungal phylogenetic lineages, indicating possible convergent evolutionary strategies between taxa, evolution potentially driven by access to carbon-containing root exudates. PMID:26462427

  9. Respiration study on carnivorous plants: Pygmy Drosera gemmae and Drosophyllum roots

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 3 (2012), 4-10. ISSN 1448-9570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aerobic respiration * Pygmy Drosera * Drosophyllum lusitanicum Subject RIV: EF - Botanics

  10. Field growth characteristics of two aquatic carnivorous plants, Aldrovanda vesiculosa and Utricularia australis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír; Kovářová, M.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 41, - (2006), s. 395-406. ISSN 1211-9520 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : shallow dystrophic waters * water chemistry * growth analysis Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.196, year: 2006

  11. Mineral nutrient relations in the aquatic carnivorous plant Utricularia australis and its investment in carnivory

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 171, č. 3 (2008), s. 175-183. ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : tissue nutrient content * investment in carnivory * mineral nutrient economy Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.558, year: 2008

  12. Contrasting growth effects of prey capture in two aquatic carnivorous plant species

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír; Sirová, Dagmar; Vrba, J.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 176, č. 2 (2010), s. 153-160. ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516; CEZ:AV0Z60170517 Keywords : Aldrovanda vesiculosa * Utricularia australis * shoot mineral nutrient content Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.108, year: 2010

  13. Ecological implications of organic carbon dynamics in the traps of aquatic carnivorous Utricularia plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sirová, Dagmar; Borovec, Jakub; Picek, T.; Adamec, Lubomír; Nedbalová, Linda; Vrba, Jaroslav

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 38, č. 7 (2011), s. 583-593. ISSN 1445-4408 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783; GA ČR GP206/05/P520 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516; CEZ:AV0Z60170517 Keywords : biodegradability * trap fluid composition * organic acids Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.929, year: 2011

  14. Oxygen Concentrations Inside the Traps of the Carnivorous Plants Utricularia and Genlisea (Lentibulariaceae

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 100, č. 4 (2007), s. 849-856. ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic Utricularia species * trap fluid * trap respiration Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.939, year: 2007

  15. Centromere and telomere sequence alterations reflect the rapid genome evolution within the carnivorous plant genus Genlisea

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tran, T.D.; Cao, H.X.; Jovtchev, G.; Neumann, Pavel; Novák, Petr; Fojtová, M.; Vu, G.T.H.; Macas, Jiří; Fajkus, Jiří; Schubert, I.; Fuchs, J.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 84, č. 6 (2015), s. 1087-1099. ISSN 0960-7412 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP501/12/G090; GA ČR GA13-06943S Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:68081707 Keywords : Centromeric tandem repeat * centromeric retrotransposons * Genlisea nigrocaulis, hispidula Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology; BO - Biophysics (BFU-R) Impact factor: 5.972, year: 2014

  16. Comparative Genome Analysis Reveals Divergent Genome Size Evolution in a Carnivorous Plant Genus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vu, G.T.H.; Schmutzer, T.; Bull, F.; Cao, H.X.; Fuchs, J.; Tran, T.D.; Jovtchev, G.; Pistrick, K.; Stein, N.; Pečinka, A.; Neumann, Pavel; Novák, Petr; Macas, Jiří; Dear, P.H.; Blattner, F.R.; Scholz, U.; Schubert, I.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 3 (2015). ISSN 1940-3372 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP501/12/G090 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Genlisea * genome * repetitive sequences Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.933, year: 2014

  17. Architecture and evolution of a minute plant genome.

    OpenAIRE

    Ibarra-Laclette, E.; Lyons, E.; Hernández-Guzmán, G.; Pérez-Torres, C.A.; L. Carretero-Paulet; Chang, T.-H.; Lan, T.; Welch, A.J.; Abraham Juárez, M.J.; Simpson, J; Fernández-Cortés, A.; Arteaga-Vázquez, M.; Góngora-Castillo, E.; Acevedo-Hernández, A.; Schuster, S.C.

    2013-01-01

    It has been argued that the evolution of plant genome size is principally unidirectional and increasing owing to the varied action of whole-genome duplications (WGDs) and mobile element proliferation1. However, extreme genome size reductions have been reported in the angiosperm family tree. Here we report the sequence of the 82-megabase genome of the carnivorous bladderwort plant Utricularia gibba. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates a typical number of genes for a plant, ...

  18. Trypanosoma cruzi infection in neotropical wild carnivores (Mammalia: Carnivora: at the top of the T. cruzi transmission chain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabiana Lopes Rocha

    Full Text Available Little is known on the role played by Neotropical wild carnivores in the Trypanosoma cruzi transmission cycles. We investigated T. cruzi infection in wild carnivores from three sites in Brazil through parasitological and serological tests. The seven carnivore species examined were infected by T. cruzi, but high parasitemias detectable by hemoculture were found only in two Procyonidae species. Genotyping by Mini-exon gene, PCR-RFLP (1f8/Akw21I and kDNA genomic targets revealed that the raccoon (Procyon cancrivorus harbored TcI and the coatis (Nasua nasua harbored TcI, TcII, TcIII-IV and Trypanosoma rangeli, in single and mixed infections, besides four T. cruzi isolates that displayed odd band patterns in the Mini-exon assay. These findings corroborate the coati can be a bioaccumulator of T. cruzi Discrete Typing Units (DTU and may act as a transmission hub, a connection point joining sylvatic transmission cycles within terrestrial and arboreal mammals and vectors. Also, the odd band patterns observed in coatis' isolates reinforce that T. cruzi diversity might be much higher than currently acknowledged. Additionally, we assembled our data with T. cruzi infection on Neotropical carnivores' literature records to provide a comprehensive analysis of the infection patterns among distinct carnivore species, especially considering their ecological traits and phylogeny. Altogether, fifteen Neotropical carnivore species were found naturally infected by T. cruzi. Species diet was associated with T. cruzi infection rates, supporting the hypothesis that predator-prey links are important mechanisms for T. cruzi maintenance and dispersion in the wild. Distinct T. cruzi infection patterns across carnivore species and study sites were notable. Musteloidea species consistently exhibit high parasitemias in different studies which indicate their high infectivity potential. Mesocarnivores that feed on both invertebrates and mammals, including the coati, a host that

  19. Are ant feces nutrients for plants? A metabolomics approach to elucidate the nutritional effects on plants hosting weaver ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vidkjær, Nanna Hjort; Wollenweber, Bernd; Gislum, René;

    2015-01-01

    Weaver ants (genus Oecophylla) are tropical carnivorous ant species living in high numbers in the canopies of trees. The ants excrete copious amounts of fecal matter on leaf surfaces, and these feces may provide nutrients to host trees. This hypothesis is supported by studies of ant-plant interac...

  20. Supply determines demand: influence of partner quality and quantity on the interactions between bats and pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schöner, Caroline R; Schöner, Michael G; Kerth, Gerald; Grafe, T Ulmar

    2013-09-01

    Interspecific relationships such as mutualism and parasitism are major drivers of biodiversity. Because such interactions often comprise more than two species, ecological studies increasingly focus on complex multispecies systems. However, the spatial heterogeneity of multi-species interactions is often poorly understood. Here, we investigate the unusual interaction of a bat (Kerivoula hardwickii hardwickii) and two pitcher plant species (Nepenthes hemsleyana and N. bicalcarata) whose pitchers serve as roost for bats. Nepenthes hemsleyana offers roosts of higher quality, indicated by a more stable microclimate compared to N. bicalcarata but occurs at lower abundance and is less common than the latter. Whereas N. hemsleyana benefits from the roosting bats by gaining nitrogen from their feces, the bats' interaction with N. bicalcarata seems to be commensal or even parasitic. Bats stayed longer in roosts of higher quality provided by N. hemsleyana and preferred them to pitchers of N. bicalcarata in a disturbance experiment. Moreover, bats roosting only in pitchers of N. hemsleyana had a higher body condition and were less infested with parasites compared to bats roosting in pitchers of N. bicalcarata. Our study shows how the local supply of roosts with different qualities affects the behavior and status of their inhabitants and-as a consequence-how the demand of the inhabitants can influence evolutionary adaptations of the roost providing species. PMID:23436020

  1. Does size matter? An investigation of habitat use across a carnivore assemblage in the Serengeti, Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durant, Sarah M; Craft, Meggan E; Foley, Charles; Hampson, Katie; Lobora, Alex L; Msuha, Maurus; Eblate, Ernest; Bukombe, John; McHetto, John; Pettorelli, Nathalie

    2010-09-01

    1. This study utilizes a unique data set covering over 19 000 georeferenced records of species presence collected between 1993 and 2008, to explore the distribution and habitat selectivity of an assemblage of 26 carnivore species in the Serengeti-Ngorongoro landscape in northern Tanzania. 2. Two species, the large-spotted genet and the bushy-tailed mongoose, were documented for the first time within this landscape. Ecological Niche Factor Analysis (ENFA) was used to examine habitat selectivity for 18 of the 26 carnivore species for which there is sufficient data. Eleven ecogeographical variables (EGVs), such as altitude and habitat type, were used for these analyses. 3. The ENFA demonstrated that species differed in their habitat selectivity, and supported the limited ecological information already available for these species, such as the golden jackals' preference for grassland and the leopards' preference for river valleys. 4. Two aggregate scores, marginality and tolerance, are generated by the ENFA, and describe each species' habitat selectivity in relation to the suite of EGVs. These scores were used to test the hypothesis that smaller species are expected to be more selective than larger species [Science, 1989, 243, 1145]. Two predictions were tested: Marginality should decrease with body mass; and tolerance should increase with body mass. Our study provided no evidence for either prediction. 5. Our results not only support previous analyses of carnivore diet breadth, but also represent a novel approach to the investigation of habitat selection across species assemblages. Our method provides a powerful tool to explore similar questions in other systems and for other taxa. PMID:20646121

  2. Implications of Harvest on the Boundaries of Protected Areas for Large Carnivore Viewing Opportunities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bridget L Borg

    Full Text Available The desire to see free ranging large carnivores in their natural habitat is a driver of tourism in protected areas around the globe. However, large carnivores are wide-ranging and subject to human-caused mortality outside protected area boundaries. The impact of harvest (trapping or hunting on wildlife viewing opportunities has been the subject of intense debate and speculation, but quantitative analyses have been lacking. We examined the effect of legal harvest of wolves (Canis lupus along the boundaries of two North American National Parks, Denali (DNPP and Yellowstone (YNP, on wolf viewing opportunities within the parks during peak tourist season. We used data on wolf sightings, pack sizes, den site locations, and harvest adjacent to DNPP from 1997-2013 and YNP from 2008-2013 to evaluate the relationship between harvest and wolf viewing opportunities. Although sightings were largely driven by wolf population size and proximity of den sites to roads, sightings in both parks were significantly reduced by harvest. Sightings in YNP increased by 45% following years with no harvest of a wolf from a pack, and sightings in DNPP were more than twice as likely during a period with a harvest buffer zone than in years without the buffer. These findings show that harvest of wolves adjacent to protected areas can reduce sightings within those areas despite minimal impacts on the size of protected wolf populations. Consumptive use of carnivores adjacent to protected areas may therefore reduce their potential for non-consumptive use, and these tradeoffs should be considered when developing regional wildlife management policies.

  3. Integrating economic costs and biological traits into global conservation priorities for carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Dias Loyola

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Prioritization schemes usually highlight species-rich areas, where many species are at imminent risk of extinction. To be ecologically relevant these schemes should also include species biological traits into area-setting methods. Furthermore, in a world of limited funds for conservation, conservation action is constrained by land acquisition costs. Hence, including economic costs into conservation priorities can substantially improve their conservation cost-effectiveness. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We examined four global conservation scenarios for carnivores based on the joint mapping of economic costs and species biological traits. These scenarios identify the most cost-effective priority sets of ecoregions, indicating best investment opportunities for safeguarding every carnivore species, and also establish priority sets that can maximize species representation in areas harboring highly vulnerable species. We compared these results with a scenario that minimizes the total number of ecoregions required for conserving all species, irrespective of other factors. We found that cost-effective conservation investments should focus on 41 ecoregions highlighted in the scenario that consider simultaneously both ecoregion vulnerability and economic costs of land acquisition. Ecoregions included in priority sets under these criteria should yield best returns of investments since they harbor species with high extinction risk and have lower mean land cost. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our study highlights ecoregions of particular importance for the conservation of the world's carnivores defining global conservation priorities in analyses that encompass socioeconomic and life-history factors. We consider the identification of a comprehensive priority-set of areas as a first step towards an in-situ biodiversity maintenance strategy.

  4. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahata, Chihiro; Nielsen, Scott Eric; Takii, Akiko; Izumiyama, Shigeyuki

    2014-01-01

    When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus) are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF). Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores. PMID:24465947

  5. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chihiro Takahata

    Full Text Available When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF. Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores.

  6. Weed seed predation by granivorous carabids as influenced by carnivorous carabids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Mol, Friederike

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Weed seed predation is influenced for both biological and abiotic factors. Knowledge about these factors is necessary to optimize seed predation as a biological weed control measure. Here, we asked whether carnivorous carabid beetles can affect the seed predation. Additionally, the effect of weather on seed predation rate was investigated. For this purpose, 12, 1m² enclosures were installed in a field (block design with four treatments and three replications in northeastern Germany over a period of 23 days. Treatments in the enclosures were 1 without carabids, 2 with a natural density and species composition of carabids, 3 with granivorous carabid beetles (Pseudoophonus rufipes, Harpulus affinis, and 4 as 3 but additionally with carnivorous carabids (Pterostichus melanarius, Poecilus cupreus Seed predation rate was determined daily using seed cards with Poa annua and Stellaria media seeds. Temperature, relative air humidity and daily precipitation were measured as covariables. In the treatment with granivorous carabids seed predation rate was 54.3 (P. annua resp. 14.3 (S. media seeds per enclosure and day. In the treatment with granivorous and carnivorous carabids, seed predation rate was significantly lower for P. annua (46.6 seeds per enclosure and day, paired Wilcoxon-Test, p = 0.04 and equally high for S. media (14.4 seeds per enclosure and day. In enclosures containing non-manipulated carabid densities 9.1 seeds of P. annua and 7.2 seeds of S. media were lost per enclosure and per day, which is significantly higher than from enclosures that were void of carabids. The minimum night temperature was the only weather variable that significantly influenced seed predation rate. This work contributes to a better understanding of the factors influencing seed predation rates in the field.

  7. Implications of Harvest on the Boundaries of Protected Areas for Large Carnivore Viewing Opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borg, Bridget L; Arthur, Stephen M; Bromen, Nicholas A; Cassidy, Kira A; McIntyre, Rick; Smith, Douglas W; Prugh, Laura R

    2016-01-01

    The desire to see free ranging large carnivores in their natural habitat is a driver of tourism in protected areas around the globe. However, large carnivores are wide-ranging and subject to human-caused mortality outside protected area boundaries. The impact of harvest (trapping or hunting) on wildlife viewing opportunities has been the subject of intense debate and speculation, but quantitative analyses have been lacking. We examined the effect of legal harvest of wolves (Canis lupus) along the boundaries of two North American National Parks, Denali (DNPP) and Yellowstone (YNP), on wolf viewing opportunities within the parks during peak tourist season. We used data on wolf sightings, pack sizes, den site locations, and harvest adjacent to DNPP from 1997-2013 and YNP from 2008-2013 to evaluate the relationship between harvest and wolf viewing opportunities. Although sightings were largely driven by wolf population size and proximity of den sites to roads, sightings in both parks were significantly reduced by harvest. Sightings in YNP increased by 45% following years with no harvest of a wolf from a pack, and sightings in DNPP were more than twice as likely during a period with a harvest buffer zone than in years without the buffer. These findings show that harvest of wolves adjacent to protected areas can reduce sightings within those areas despite minimal impacts on the size of protected wolf populations. Consumptive use of carnivores adjacent to protected areas may therefore reduce their potential for non-consumptive use, and these tradeoffs should be considered when developing regional wildlife management policies. PMID:27124729

  8. Large carnivores: wolf, brown bear, and lynx in the Czech Republic

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Červený, Jaroslav; Koubek, Petr; Marhoul, P.; Nová, P.; Volf, O.; Bartošová, D.; Bufka, L.; Bláha, J.

    Strasbourg : Council of Europe, 2006 - (Bath, A.), s. 45-48 - ( Environment al encounters. No. 60). [Transboundary management of large carnivore populations. Osilnica (SI), 15.04.2005-17.04.2005] R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IBS6093003; GA MŽP(CZ) SE/620/1/03 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : Carnivora * Czech Republic Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour http://www.coe.int/t/e/cultural_co-operation/ environment /nature_and_biological_diversity/publications/RE60-bil.pdf

  9. Extensive production of Neospora caninum tissue cysts in a carnivorous marsupial succumbing to experimental neosporosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    King Jessica S

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Experimental infections of Sminthopsis crassicaudata, the fat-tailed dunnart, a carnivorous marsupial widely distributed throughout the arid and semi-arid zones of Australia, show that this species can act as an intermediate host for Neospora caninum. In contrast to existing models that develop relatively few N. caninum tissue cysts, dunnarts offer a new animal model in which active neosporosis is dominated by tissue cyst production. The results provide evidence for a sylvatic life cycle of N. caninum in Australia between marsupials and wild dogs. It establishes the foundation for an investigation of the impact and costs of neosporosis to wildlife.

  10. Migratory and carnivorous birds in Brazil: reservoirs for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia species?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machado, Rosangela Zacarias; André, Marcos Rogério; Werther, Karin; de Sousa, Eliane; Gavioli, Fernando Antônio; Alves Junior, José Roberto Ferreira

    2012-08-01

    In order to investigate new hosts for Anaplasmataceae agents in Brazil, we collected blood samples from 21 wild birds. Using molecular techniques, we detected the presence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and an Ehrlichia species closely related to Ehrlichia canis in carnivorous avian blood samples. In addition, an Ehrlichia species closely related to an Ehrlichia species found in wild felines in Brazil was also detected in a goose blood sample. Wild birds may play a role as carriers of Anaplasmataceae agents in Brazil. PMID:22607070

  11. Stable isotopes reveal rail-associated behavior in a threatened carnivore

    OpenAIRE

    Hopkins, John B.; Whittington, Jesse; Anthony P. Clevenger; Michael A. Sawaya; St. Clair, Colleen Cassady

    2014-01-01

    Human–wildlife conflict is a leading cause of adult mortality for large carnivores worldwide. Train collision is the primary cause of mortality for threatened grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) in Banff National Park. We investigated the use of stable isotope analysis as a tool for identifying bears that use the railway in Banff. Rail-associated bears had higher δ15N and δ34S values than bears sampled away from the rail, but similar δ13C values. Because elevated δ15N values are indicative of higher...

  12. Anatomy and Disorders of the Oral Cavity of Ferrets and Other Exotic Companion Carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson-Delaney, Cathy A

    2016-09-01

    Exotic companion carnivores such as ferrets, skunks, fennec foxes, coatimundis, raccoons, and kinkajous presented in clinical practice share similar dental anatomy, function, and diseases. The domestic ferret serves as the representative species for this group with its anatomy, diseases, and conditions described in detail. Dog and cat guidelines for veterinary and home care seem to be relevant and applicable, including dental endodontic procedures. Annual or biannual dental examinations and prophylaxis are recommended. The most common dental and oral problems are tooth wear, plaque and calculus, teeth fractures, gingivitis and periodontitis, tooth loss, abscesses, oral ulceration, tonsillitis, and neoplasia. PMID:27497211

  13. Balancing of protein and lipid intake by a mammalian carnivore, the mink, Mustela vison

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mayntz, David; Nielsen, Vivi Hunnicke; Sørensen, Allan;

    2009-01-01

    Many herbivores and omnivores can balance their intake of macronutrients when faced with nutritionally variable environments. Carnivores, however, are widely believed to optimize their rates of prey capture and energy intake rather than balancing nutrients. We tested nutrient balancing in captive...... previously reported for herbivores and omnivores, including humans. This demonstration of nutrient balancing in a carnivorous mammal indicates that the capacity for nutrient balancing is a more general phenomenon across trophic levels than was hitherto believed to be the case......Many herbivores and omnivores can balance their intake of macronutrients when faced with nutritionally variable environments. Carnivores, however, are widely believed to optimize their rates of prey capture and energy intake rather than balancing nutrients. We tested nutrient balancing in captive...

  14. From cheetahs to chimpanzees: a comparative review of the drivers of human-carnivore conflict and human-primate conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickman, Amy J

    2012-01-01

    Human-wildlife conflict is a growing conservation threat, and is increasingly of importance to primate conservationists. Despite this, relatively little work has been done to date on the drivers of human-primate conflict, especially compared to other conflict-causing taxa such as large carnivores. However, the drivers of conflict are often very similar across species, so conflict researchers can learn important lessons from work conducted on other taxa. This paper discusses 8 key factors which are likely to affect how hostile people are towards wildlife and any damage they cause--6 of these are common to both carnivores and primates, while one is much more applicable to carnivores and the other is specific to primates. These conflict drivers involve numerous social and cultural factors, and highlight the importance of truly understanding the local drivers of conflict in order to develop effective mitigation strategies. PMID:23363596

  15. Wound and insect-induced jasmonate accumulation in carnivorous Drosera capensis: two sides of the same coin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mithöfer, A; Reichelt, M; Nakamura, Y

    2014-09-01

    Carnivorous sundew plants catch and digest insect prey for their own nutrition. The sundew species Drosera capensis shows a pronounced leaf bending reaction upon prey capture in order to form an 'outer stomach'. This formation is triggered by jasmonates, phytohormones typically involved in defence reactions against herbivory and wounding. Whether jasmonates still have this function in D. capensis in addition to mediating the leaf bending reaction was investigated here. Wounded, insect prey-fed and insect-derived oral secretion-treated leaves of D. capensis were analysed for jasmonates (jasmonic acid, JA; jasmonic acid-isoleucine conjugate, JA-Ile) using LC-MS/MS. Prey-induced jasmonate accumulation in D. capensis leaves was persistent, and showed high levels of JA and JA-Ile (575 and 55.7 pmol · g · FW(-1) , respectively), whereas wounding induced a transient increase of JA (maximum 500 pmol · g · FW(-1) ) and only low (3.1 pmol · g · FW(-1) ) accumulation of JA-Ile. Herbivory, mimicked with a combined treatment of wounding plus oral secretion (W+OS) obtained from Spodoptera littoralis larvae induced both JA (4000 pmol · g · FW(-1) ) and JA-Ile (25 pmol · g · FW(-1) ) accumulation, with kinetics similar to prey treatment. Only prey and W+OS, but not wounding alone or OS, induced leaf bending. The results indicate that both mechanical and chemical stimuli trigger JA and JA-Ile synthesis. Differences in kinetics and induced jasmonate levels suggest different sensing and signalling events upon injury and insect-dependent challenge. Thus, in Drosera, jasmonates are still part of the response to wounding. Jasmonates are also employed in insect-induced reactions, including responses to herbivory and carnivory. PMID:24499476

  16. Forelimb anatomy and the discrimination of the predatory behavior of carnivorous mammals: the thylacine as a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janis, Christine M; Figueirido, Borja

    2014-12-01

    Carnivorous mammals use their forelimbs in different ways to capture their prey. Most terrestrial carnivores have some cursorial (running) adaptations, but ambush predators retain considerable flexibility in their forelimb movement, important for grappling with their prey. In contrast, predators that rely on pursuit to run down their prey have sacrificed some of this flexibility for locomotor efficiency, in the greater restriction of the forelimb motion to the parasagittal plane. In this article, we measured aspects of the forelimb anatomy (44 linear measurements) in 36 species of carnivorous mammals of known predatory behavior, and used multivariate analyses to investigate how well the forelimb anatomy reflects the predatory mode (ambush, pursuit, or pounce-pursuit). A prime intention of this study was to establish morphological correlates of behavior that could then be applied to fossil mammals: for this purpose, five individuals of the recently extinct thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus) were also included as unknowns. We show that the three different types of predators can be distinguished by their morphology, both in analyses where all the forelimb bones are included together, and in the separate analyses of each bone individually. Of particular interest is the ability to distinguish between the two types of more cursorial predators, pursuit and pounce-pursuit, which have previously been considered as primarily size-based categories. Despite a prior consideration of the thylacine as a "pounce-pursuit" or an "ambush" type of predator, the thylacines did not consistently cluster with any type of predatory carnivores in our analyses. Rather, the thylacines appeared to be more generalized in their morphology than any of the extant carnivores. The absence of a large diversity of large carnivorous mammals in Australia, past and present, may explain the thylacine's generalized morphology. PMID:24934132

  17. Mapping trends of large and medium size carnivores of conservation interest in Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihai Cristian Adamescu

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available We analysed yearly estimates of population size data during 2001-2012 for five carnivores species of conservation interest (Ursus arctos, Canis lupus, Lynx lynx, Felis silvestris and Canis aureus. Population size estimations were done by the game management authorities and integrated by the competent authorities on the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. Trends in data were detected using non-parametric Mann-Kendall test. This test was chosen considering the short length of data series and its usefulness for non-normal distributed data. The trend was tested at three spatial scales: game management units (n=1565, biogeographical region (n=5 and national. Trends depicted for each game management unit were plotted using ArcGIS, resulting species trend distribution maps. For the studied period increasing population trends were observed for Ursus arctos, Canis lupus, Canis aureus and Lynx lynx, while for Felis silvestris there was no trend recorded. Such an analysis in especially useful for conservation proposes, game management and reporting obligations under article 17 of the EC Habitat Directive, using population trend as a proxy for population dynamics. We conclude that the status of the five carnivore species is favourable during the study period.

  18. Toward Human-Carnivore Coexistence: Understanding Tolerance for Tigers in Bangladesh.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inskip, Chloe; Carter, Neil; Riley, Shawn; Roberts, Thomas; MacMillan, Douglas

    2016-01-01

    Fostering local community tolerance for endangered carnivores, such as tigers (Panthera tigris), is a core component of many conservation strategies. Identification of antecedents of tolerance will facilitate the development of effective tolerance-building conservation action and secure local community support for, and involvement in, conservation initiatives. We use a stated preference approach for measuring tolerance, based on the 'Wildlife Stakeholder Acceptance Capacity' concept, to explore villagers' tolerance levels for tigers in the Bangladesh Sundarbans, an area where, at the time of the research, human-tiger conflict was severe. We apply structural equation modeling to test an a priori defined theoretical model of tolerance and identify the experiential and psychological basis of tolerance in this community. Our results indicate that beliefs about tigers and about the perceived current tiger population trend are predictors of tolerance for tigers. Positive beliefs about tigers and a belief that the tiger population is not currently increasing are both associated with greater stated tolerance for the species. Contrary to commonly-held notions, negative experiences with tigers do not directly affect tolerance levels; instead, their effect is mediated by villagers' beliefs about tigers and risk perceptions concerning human-tiger conflict incidents. These findings highlight a need to explore and understand the socio-psychological factors that encourage tolerance towards endangered species. Our research also demonstrates the applicability of this approach to tolerance research to a wide range of socio-economic and cultural contexts and reveals its capacity to enhance carnivore conservation efforts worldwide. PMID:26760035

  19. Toward Human-Carnivore Coexistence: Understanding Tolerance for Tigers in Bangladesh.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chloe Inskip

    Full Text Available Fostering local community tolerance for endangered carnivores, such as tigers (Panthera tigris, is a core component of many conservation strategies. Identification of antecedents of tolerance will facilitate the development of effective tolerance-building conservation action and secure local community support for, and involvement in, conservation initiatives. We use a stated preference approach for measuring tolerance, based on the 'Wildlife Stakeholder Acceptance Capacity' concept, to explore villagers' tolerance levels for tigers in the Bangladesh Sundarbans, an area where, at the time of the research, human-tiger conflict was severe. We apply structural equation modeling to test an a priori defined theoretical model of tolerance and identify the experiential and psychological basis of tolerance in this community. Our results indicate that beliefs about tigers and about the perceived current tiger population trend are predictors of tolerance for tigers. Positive beliefs about tigers and a belief that the tiger population is not currently increasing are both associated with greater stated tolerance for the species. Contrary to commonly-held notions, negative experiences with tigers do not directly affect tolerance levels; instead, their effect is mediated by villagers' beliefs about tigers and risk perceptions concerning human-tiger conflict incidents. These findings highlight a need to explore and understand the socio-psychological factors that encourage tolerance towards endangered species. Our research also demonstrates the applicability of this approach to tolerance research to a wide range of socio-economic and cultural contexts and reveals its capacity to enhance carnivore conservation efforts worldwide.

  20. Protein sequence evidence for monophyly of the carnivore families Procyonidae and Mustelidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jong, W W

    1986-05-01

    The amino acid sequence of the eye lens protein alpha-crystallin A of the ring-tailed cat, Bassariscus astutus, has been determined. The sequence of the Bassariscus alpha A chain, which is 173 residues long, was compared with the previously determined set of 41 mammalian alpha A sequences. Among the investigated carnivores (dog, cat, sloth bear, American mink, gray seal, and California sea lion) the Bassariscus alpha A sequence exclusively shares two amino acid replacements with the alpha A chain of the mink, Mustela vison: 7 His----Gln and 61 Ile----Val. The Mustela and Bassariscus alpha A sequences differ at only three positions and have no replacements in common with any of the other investigated carnivore alpha A chains. Furthermore, the replacement 7 His----Gln has only been found in three-toed sloth, whereas 61 Ile----Val occurs scattered in three other taxa: pig, rhinoceros, and prosimians. It thus is most parsimonious to join Bassariscus and Mustela--and consequently their respective families, Procyonidae and Mustelidae--as sister groups in the phylogenetic tree of mammalian alpha A sequences. PMID:3444403

  1. Replacement of moist ingredients in the feed training of carnivorous fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Lúcia Salaro

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The study evaluated the replacement of bovine heart by gelatin in the feed training of carnivorous fish, using giant trahira (Hoplias lacerdae as an experimental model. A completely randomized design with four treatments and five repetitions was employed. The treatments were composed of wet ingredients beef heart (control, gelatin diluted in water, gelatin diluted in beef heart broth, and gelatin diluted in water mixed with fish meal. The fish (3.22±0.03 cm and 0.57±0.01 g were conditioned to accept industrialized diets by the technique of gradual feed ingredients transition in the diet. Gains in weight and length, efficiency of feed training, specific growth rate, cannibalism, mortality and survival rates were evaluated. There was significant difference in weight and length gains and specific growth rate, whereby the use of bovine heart gave the best results. Greater efficiency of feed training was observed for fish fed diets containing beef heart and gelatin diluted in water mixed with fish meal. The high survival rates and the absence of significant differences among treatments for rates of cannibalism, mortality and survival indicate the feasibility of using gelatin as a moist ingredient in the feed training of carnivorous fish.

  2. Blood does not buy goodwill: allowing culling increases poaching of a large carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapron, Guillaume; Treves, Adrian

    2016-05-11

    Quantifying environmental crime and the effectiveness of policy interventions is difficult because perpetrators typically conceal evidence. To prevent illegal uses of natural resources, such as poaching endangered species, governments have advocated granting policy flexibility to local authorities by liberalizing culling or hunting of large carnivores. We present the first quantitative evaluation of the hypothesis that liberalizing culling will reduce poaching and improve population status of an endangered carnivore. We show that allowing wolf (Canis lupus) culling was substantially more likely to increase poaching than reduce it. Replicated, quasi-experimental changes in wolf policies in Wisconsin and Michigan, USA, revealed that a repeated policy signal to allow state culling triggered repeated slowdowns in wolf population growth, irrespective of the policy implementation measured as the number of wolves killed. The most likely explanation for these slowdowns was poaching and alternative explanations found no support. When the government kills a protected species, the perceived value of each individual of that species may decline; so liberalizing wolf culling may have sent a negative message about the value of wolves or acceptability of poaching. Our results suggest that granting management flexibility for endangered species to address illegal behaviour may instead promote such behaviour. PMID:27170719

  3. Human Carnivore Coexistence on Communal Land Bordering the Greater Kruger Area, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagendijk, D. D. Georgette; Gusset, Markus

    2008-12-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the potential for coexistence between rural people (living adjacent to a protected area) and predators (from the same area) ranging onto communal land. Ninety members of local communities bordering Manyeleti Game Reserve, which is contiguous with Kruger National Park, South Africa were interviewed. Respondents expressed diverging attitudes toward predators, which were more favorable among participants with higher education. Negative views were particularly due to fear of human and livestock losses, especially to lions, Panthera leo. Lions were thought to be the most abundant predator both within and outside the reserve. Lions were also the best known predator and were most often held responsible for killing livestock. Despite these livestock losses and a lack of conservation education, most participants voiced favorable opinions about large carnivore conservation, as predators were considered an integral part of the respondents’ natural heritage. Thanks to this cultural tolerance and also because of a largely accepted management policy regarding predator control, large carnivores and people can coexist in the vicinity of Kruger National Park.

  4. Technical Note: Silica stable isotopes and silicification in a carnivorous sponge Asbestopluma sp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendry, K. R.; Swann, G. E. A.; Leng, M. J.; Sloane, H. J.; Goodwin, C.; Berman, J.; Maldonado, M.

    2015-06-01

    The stable isotope composition of benthic sponge spicule silica is a potential source of palaeoceanographic information about past deep seawater chemistry. The silicon isotope composition of spicules has been shown to relate to the silicic acid concentration of ambient water, although existing calibrations do exhibit a degree of scatter in the relationship. Less is known about how the oxygen isotope composition of sponge spicule silica relates to environmental conditions during growth. Here, we investigate the vital effects on silica, silicon and oxygen isotope composition in a carnivorous sponge, Asbestopluma sp., from the Southern Ocean. We find significant variations in silicon and oxygen isotopic composition within the specimen that are related to unusual spicule silicification. The largest variation in both isotope systems was associated with the differential distribution of an unconventional, hypersilicified spicule type (desma) along the sponge body. The absence an internal canal in the desmas suggests an unconventional silicification pattern leading to an unusually heavy isotope signature. Additional internal variability derives from a systematic offset between the peripheral skeleton of the body having systematically a higher isotopic composition than the internal skeleton. A simplified silicon isotope fractionation model, in which desmas were excluded, suggests that the lack of a system for seawater pumping in carnivorous sponges favours a low replenishment of dissolved silicon within the internal tissues, causing kinetic fractionation during silicification that impacts the isotope signature of the internal skeleton. Analysis of multiple spicules should be carried out to "average out" any artefacts in order to produce more robust downcore measurements.

  5. Dietary separation of sympatric carnivores identified by molecular analysis of scats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, L E; Roman, J; Sunquist, M E

    2000-10-01

    We studied the diets of four sympatric carnivores in the flooding savannas of western Venezuela by analysing predator DNA and prey remains in faeces. DNA was isolated and a portion of the cytochrome b gene of the mitochondrial genome amplified and sequenced from 20 of 34 scats. Species were diagnosed by comparing the resulting sequences to reference sequences generated from the blood of puma (Puma concolor), jaguar (Panthera onca), ocelot (Leopardus pardalus) and crab-eating fox (Cerdocyon thous). Scat size has previously been used to identify predators, but DNA data show that puma and jaguar scats overlap in size, as do those of puma, ocelot and fox. Prey-content analysis suggests minimal prey partitioning between pumas and jaguars. In field testing this technique for large carnivores, two potential limitations emerged: locating intact faecal samples and recovering DNA sequences from samples obtained in the wet season. Nonetheless, this study illustrates the tremendous potential of DNA faecal studies. The presence of domestic dog (Canis familiaris) in one puma scat and of wild pig (Sus scrofa), set as bait, in one jaguar sample exemplifies the forensic possibilities of this noninvasive analysis. In addition to defining the dietary habits of similar size sympatric mammals, DNA identifications from faeces allow wildlife managers to detect the presence of endangered taxa and manage prey for their conservation. PMID:11050553

  6. A survey of intestinal helminths in wild carnivores from the Tatra National Park, southern Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borecka, Anna; Gawor, Jakub; Zieba, Filip

    2013-01-01

    From January 2011 to July 2012, 144 faecal samples of wild carnivores from the Tatra National Park were examined to evaluate the prevalence of intestinal helminths--72 of wolves (Canis lupus), 45 of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 15 of pine martens (Martes martes) and 12 of brown bears (Ursus arctos). In wolves, monospecific infection with Trichuris vulpis (13.9%), Toxocara canis (6.9%), Ancylostoma/Uncinaria (5.6%) and taeniids (1.4%) was revealed. In red foxes, the most prevalent infection was 7 vulpis (64.4%), followed by T. canis (11.1%), Ancylostoma/Uncinaria (8.9%) and taeniids (2.2%). Monospecific infection with T. vulpis was more frequent (44.4%), than infection with two species, i.e. T > vulpis with Ancylostoma/Uncinaria, T. vulpis with T. canis or T. vulpis with taeniids (17.8%). In pine martens, Trichuris spp. was the most prevalent (40.0%), while T. cati and Ancylostoma/Uncinaria were found in 13.3% and 6.7% samples, respectively. In faeces from brown bears, no parasite eggs were found. The present survey of wild carnivores revealed a significant prevalence of parasites such as Toxocara spp. and Trichuris spp. (8.3% and 31.0% in all examined samples, respectively), which are hazardous to human and animal health. PMID:24791342

  7. Assessing the potential threat landscape of a proposed reintroduction site for carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samantha K Page

    Full Text Available This study provides a framework to assess the feasibility of reintroducing carnivores into an area, using African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus as an example. The Great Fish River Nature Reserve in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa, has been identified as a potential reserve to reintroduce wild dogs, and we applied this framework to provide a threat assessment of the surrounding area to determine potential levels of human-wildlife conflict. Although 56% of neighbouring landowners and local communities were positive about a wild dog reintroduction, data collected from questionnaire surveys revealed that human-wild dog conflict is a potential threat to wild dog survival in the area. Additional potential threats include diseases, snaring, poaching and hunting wild dogs for the use of traditional medicine. A threat index was developed to establish which properties harboured the greatest threats to wild dogs. This index was significantly influenced by the respondent's first language (isiXhosa had more positive indices, education level (poorer education was synonymous with more positive threat indices, land use (wildlife ranching being the most negative and land tenure (community respondents had more positive indices than private landowners. Although threats are present, they can be effectively mitigated through strategies such as carnivore education programs, vaccination campaigns and anti-snare patrols to promote a successful reintroduction of this endangered canid.

  8. Assessing the potential threat landscape of a proposed reintroduction site for carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Samantha K; Parker, Daniel M; Peinke, Dean M; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T

    2015-01-01

    This study provides a framework to assess the feasibility of reintroducing carnivores into an area, using African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) as an example. The Great Fish River Nature Reserve in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa, has been identified as a potential reserve to reintroduce wild dogs, and we applied this framework to provide a threat assessment of the surrounding area to determine potential levels of human-wildlife conflict. Although 56% of neighbouring landowners and local communities were positive about a wild dog reintroduction, data collected from questionnaire surveys revealed that human-wild dog conflict is a potential threat to wild dog survival in the area. Additional potential threats include diseases, snaring, poaching and hunting wild dogs for the use of traditional medicine. A threat index was developed to establish which properties harboured the greatest threats to wild dogs. This index was significantly influenced by the respondent's first language (isiXhosa had more positive indices), education level (poorer education was synonymous with more positive threat indices), land use (wildlife ranching being the most negative) and land tenure (community respondents had more positive indices than private landowners). Although threats are present, they can be effectively mitigated through strategies such as carnivore education programs, vaccination campaigns and anti-snare patrols to promote a successful reintroduction of this endangered canid. PMID:25822468

  9. Shoot, shovel and shut up: cryptic poaching slows restoration of a large carnivore in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liberg, Olof; Chapron, Guillaume; Wabakken, Petter; Pedersen, Hans Christian; Hobbs, N Thompson; Sand, Håkan

    2012-03-01

    Poaching is a widespread and well-appreciated problem for the conservation of many threatened species. Because poaching is illegal, there is strong incentive for poachers to conceal their activities, and consequently, little data on the effects of poaching on population dynamics are available. Quantifying poaching mortality should be a required knowledge when developing conservation plans for endangered species but is hampered by methodological challenges. We show that rigorous estimates of the effects of poaching relative to other sources of mortality can be obtained with a hierarchical state-space model combined with multiple sources of data. Using the Scandinavian wolf (Canis lupus) population as an illustrative example, we show that poaching accounted for approximately half of total mortality and more than two-thirds of total poaching remained undetected by conventional methods, a source of mortality we term as 'cryptic poaching'. Our simulations suggest that without poaching during the past decade, the population would have been almost four times as large in 2009. Such a severe impact of poaching on population recovery may be widespread among large carnivores. We believe that conservation strategies for large carnivores considering only observed data may not be adequate and should be revised by including and quantifying cryptic poaching. PMID:21849323

  10. Comparing scat detection dogs, cameras, and hair snares for surveying carnivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Robert A.; Donovan, T.M.; MacKay, Paula; Zielinski, William J.; Buzas, Jeffrey S.

    2007-01-01

    Carnivores typically require large areas of habitat, exist at low natural densities, and exhibit elusive behavior - characteristics that render them difficult to study. Noninvasive survey methods increasingly provide means to collect extensive data on carnivore occupancy, distribution, and abundance. During the summers of 2003-2004, we compared the abilities of scat detection dogs, remote cameras, and hair snares to detect black bears (Ursus americanus), fishers (Martes pennanti), and bobcats (Lynx rufus) at 168 sites throughout Vermont. All 3 methods detected black bears; neither fishers nor bobcats were detected by hair snares. Scat detection dogs yielded the highest raw detection rate and probability of detection (given presence) for each of the target species, as well as the greatest number of unique detections (i.e., occasions when only one method detected the target species). We estimated that the mean probability of detecting the target species during a single visit to a site with a detection dog was 0.87 for black bears, 0.84 for fishers, and 0.27 for bobcats. Although the cost of surveying with detection dogs was higher than that of remote cameras or hair snares, the efficiency of this method rendered it the most cost-effective survey method.

  11. Serologic survey of brucellosis in captive neotropical wild carnivores in northeast Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira-Filho, Edmilson F; Pinheiro, José W Junior; Souza, Marcília M A; Santana, Vânia L A; Silva, Jean C R; Mota, Rinaldo A; Sá, Fabricio B

    2012-06-01

    Abstract. This study reports the detection of antibodies against Brucella abortus and B. canis in wild neotropical carnivores kept in captivity in three zoos in northeastern Brazil. A total of 42 serum samples were examined, 17 from coatis (Nasua nasua), eight from crab-eating raccoons (Procyon cancrivorus), three from crab-eating foxes (Cerdocyon thous), three from hoary foxes (Lycalopex vetulus), two from little spotted cats (Leopardus tigrinus), five from tayras (Eira barbara), two from greater grisons (Galictis vittata), and two from neotropical river otters (Lontra longicaudis). The Rose-Bengal test and complement fixation test (CFT) were performed to detect anti-Brucella spp. antibodies, whereas the agar gel immunodiffusion test (AGID) was employed to detect anti-B. canis antibodies. The overall seroprevalence varied by species and by test; in addition, CFT and AGID seemed better able to detect antibodies against B. abortus and B. canis, respectively. This is the first study on the presence of anti-Brucella spp. antibodies in captive carnivores from Brazil, as well as the first report of antibodies to Brucella spp. in coatis, crab-eating raccoons, hoary foxes, little spotted cats, tayras, and greater grisons. PMID:22779245

  12. Impact of botanical pesticides derived from Melia azedarach and Azadirachta indica plants on the emission of volatiles that attract parasitoids of the diamondback moth to cabbage plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Charleston, D.S.; Gols, R.; Hordijk, C.A.; Kfir, R.; Vet, L.E.M.; Dicke, M.

    2006-01-01

    Herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods use chemical information from plants during foraging. Aqueous leaf extracts from the syringa tree Melia azedarach and commercial formulations from the neem tree Azadirachta indica, Neemix 4.5®, were investigated for their impact on the flight response of two pa

  13. Does spatial co-occurrence of carnivores in a Central European agricultural landscape follow the null model?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šálek, Martin; Červinka, J.; Padyšáková, E.; Kreisinger, Jakub

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 60, č. 1 (2014), s. 99-107. ISSN 1612-4642 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Carnivores * Co-occurrence * Interspecific competition * Mesopredator release * Agricultural landscape Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 1.634, year: 2014

  14. Analysis of literature data on home range size and population density of carnivores: from natural to urbanized habitats

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Drahníková, L.; Tkadlec, E.; Šálek, Martin

    Brno: Ústav biologie obratlovců AV ČR, 2013 - (Bryja, J.; Řehák, Z.; Zukal, J.). s. 60 ISBN 978-80-87189-14-6. [Zoologické dny. 07.02.2013-08.02.2013, Brno] Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : carnivores * population density Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour

  15. Changes in home range sizes and population densities of carnivore species along the natural to urban habitat gradient

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šálek, Martin; Drahníková, L.; Tkadlec, Emil

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 45, č. 1 (2015), s. 1-14. ISSN 0305-1838 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Carnivores * home range size * natural–urban gradient * population density * review Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 4.256, year: 2014

  16. Determinants of Persistence and Tolerance of Carnivores on Namibian Ranches: Implications for Conservation on Southern African Private Lands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lindsey, P.A.; Havemann, C.P.; Lines, R.M.; Palazy, L.; Price, A.E.; Retief, T.A.; Rhebergen, T.; Waal, van der C.

    2013-01-01

    Changing land use patterns in southern Africa have potential to dramatically alter the prospects for carnivore conservation. Understanding these influences is essential for conservation planning. We interviewed 250 ranchers in Namibia to assess human tolerance towards and the distribution of large c

  17. Monitoring carnivore populations at the landscape scale: occupancy modelling of tigers from sign surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karanth, Kota Ullas; Gopalaswamy, Arjun M.; Kumar, Narayanarao Samba; Vaidyanathan, Srinivas; Nichols, James D.; MacKenzie, Darryl I.

    2011-01-01

    1. Assessing spatial distributions of threatened large carnivores at landscape scales poses formidable challenges because of their rarity and elusiveness. As a consequence of logistical constraints, investigators typically rely on sign surveys. Most survey methods, however, do not explicitly address the central problem of imperfect detections of animal signs in the field, leading to underestimates of true habitat occupancy and distribution. 2. We assessed habitat occupancy for a tiger Panthera tigris metapopulation across a c. 38 000-km2 landscape in India, employing a spatially replicated survey to explicitly address imperfect detections. Ecological predictions about tiger presence were confronted with sign detection data generated from occupancy sampling of 205 sites, each of 188 km2. 3. A recent occupancy model that considers Markovian dependency among sign detections on spatial replicates performed better than the standard occupancy model (ΔAIC = 184·9). A formulation of this model that fitted the data best showed that density of ungulate prey and levels of human disturbance were key determinants of local tiger presence. Model averaging resulted in a replicate-level detection probability [inline image] = 0·17 (0·17) for signs and a tiger habitat occupancy estimate of [inline image] = 0·665 (0·0857) or 14 076 (1814) km2 of potential habitat of 21 167 km2. In contrast, a traditional presence-versus-absence approach underestimated occupancy by 47%. Maps of probabilities of local site occupancy clearly identified tiger source populations at higher densities and matched observed tiger density variations, suggesting their potential utility for population assessments at landscape scales. 4. Synthesis and applications. Landscape-scale sign surveys can efficiently assess large carnivore spatial distributions and elucidate the factors governing their local presence, provided ecological and observation processes are both explicitly modelled. Occupancy

  18. Host-specific parvovirus evolution in nature is recapitulated by in vitro adaptation to different carnivore species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allison, Andrew B; Kohler, Dennis J; Ortega, Alicia; Hoover, Elizabeth A; Grove, Daniel M; Holmes, Edward C; Parrish, Colin R

    2014-11-01

    Canine parvovirus (CPV) emerged as a new pandemic pathogen of dogs in the 1970s and is closely related to feline panleukopenia virus (FPV), a parvovirus of cats and related carnivores. Although both viruses have wide host ranges, analysis of viral sequences recovered from different wild carnivore species, as shown here, demonstrated that>95% were derived from CPV-like viruses, suggesting that CPV is dominant in sylvatic cycles. Many viral sequences showed host-specific mutations in their capsid proteins, which were often close to sites known to control binding to the transferrin receptor (TfR), the host receptor for these carnivore parvoviruses, and which exhibited frequent parallel evolution. To further examine the process of host adaptation, we passaged parvoviruses with alternative backgrounds in cells from different carnivore hosts. Specific mutations were selected in several viruses and these differed depending on both the background of the virus and the host cells in which they were passaged. Strikingly, these in vitro mutations recapitulated many specific changes seen in viruses from natural populations, strongly suggesting they are host adaptive, and which were shown to result in fitness advantages over their parental virus. Comparison of the sequences of the transferrin receptors of the different carnivore species demonstrated that many mutations occurred in and around the apical domain where the virus binds, indicating that viral variants were likely selected through their fit to receptor structures. Some of the viruses accumulated high levels of variation upon passage in alternative hosts, while others could infect multiple different hosts with no or only a few additional mutations. Overall, these studies demonstrate that the evolutionary history of a virus, including how long it has been circulating and in which hosts, as well as its phylogenetic background, has a profound effect on determining viral host range. PMID:25375184

  19. Age determination methods in harbour seals (Phoca vitulina with a review of methods applicable to carnivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina Lockyer

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available The development of age determination methods in marine mammals is reviewed with particular reference to the use of teeth Growth Layer Groups (GLGs formed in the dentine and cement of carnivores. Using this background, practices for sampling, tooth extraction and collection, storage and different methods of preparation of teeth as well as reading and counting GLGs are discussed and evaluated for the harbour seal (Phoca vitulina. The paper includes comments on best practices for counting GLGs with new examples from known-age seals, and also a detailed examination of confounding factors in interpreting GLGs such as mineralization anomalies and the phenomena of accessory lines, “false annuli” and “paired laminae” which have not been discussed previously. The paper concludes with recommendations for undertaking age estimation in harbour seals from sampling through final GLG interpretation with special emphasis on standardization of methods with other researchers.

  20. Phagocytosis of sperm by follicle cells of the carnivorous sponge Asbestopluma occidentalis (Porifera, Demospongiae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riesgo, Ana

    2010-06-01

    During spermatogenesis of the carnivorous sponge Asbestopluma occidentalis, follicle cells that lined the spermatocysts phagocytosed unreleased mature sperm. Such follicle cells are part of the complex envelope that limits spermatocysts of A. occidentalis, which is also comprised of a collagen layer, a thick layer of intertwined cells, and spicules. Follicle cells showed vesicles containing single phagocytosed spermatozoa within their cytoplasm. Additionally, lipids and other inclusions were observed within the cytoplasm of follicle cells. It is likely that follicle cells recapture nutrients by phagocytosing spermatozoa and use them to form lipids and other inclusions. Such sperm phagocytosis is usually performed in higher invertebrates and vertebrates by Sertoli cells that are located in the testis wall. While Sertoli cells develop a wide range of functions such as creating a blood-testis barrier, providing crucial factors to ensure correct progression of spermatogenesis, and phagocytosis of aberrant, degenerating, and unreleased sperm cells, sponge follicle cells may only display phagocytotic activity on spermatogenic cells. PMID:20409567

  1. Helminths of foxes and other wild carnivores from rural areas in Greece.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papdopoulos, H; Himonas, C; Papazahariadou, M; Antoniadou-Sotiriadou, K

    1997-09-01

    Twenty species of helminth parasites were identified from fox, wolf, jackal and wild cat material collected in Greece. Of the 314 foxes (Vulpes vulpes) examined, 18 helminth species were recovered comprising one trematode, eight cestodes, seven nematodes and two acanthocephalans, with the cestode species Mesocestoides sp. (73.2%), Joyeuxiella echinorhynchoides (24.5%) and the nematode species Uncinaria stenocephala (43.9%), and Toxara canis (28.6%) being the most prevalent. Five cestode and three nematode species were reported from six wolves (CaniS lupus), together with one trematode, three cestode and four nematode species from five jackals (Canis aureus) and two cestode and three nematode species from four wild cats (Felis silvestris) examined. The species J. echinorhynchoides, Taenia crassiceps and Onicola canis and the genera Spirometra, Rictularia and Pachysentis are reported here for the first time in Greece. The results are discussed in the light of the feeding characteristics of wild carnivores in rural areas of Greece. PMID:9705680

  2. Carnivorous heterotopias: gender, nostalgia and hipsterness in the Copenhagen meat scene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lapina, Linda; Leer, Jonatan

    2016-01-01

    The past years have seen an upsurge of burger and barbecue restaurants in a Copenhagen gastronomic scene otherwise dominated by trends toward sustainability, ‘wholesome’, local and organic food. In these new spaces, meat is glorified and consumed materially and symbolically (through design and......’, opened in 2014 and elected as the 2014 Best New Restaurant in Copenhagen) and WarPigs, a Texas-inspired barbecue opened in 2015. We discuss negotiations of masculinity in these meatscapes that challenge contemporary ideals for (sustainable, moderate, wholesome) food consumption and gender performances....... We argue that these spaces of consumption express nostalgia and longing for authenticity that are simultaneously articulated as progressive and emancipatory. Consequently, these sites represent middle-class masculine counter-spaces – masculine, carnivorous heterotopias where archaic, working class...

  3. Technical Note: Silica stable isotopes and silicification in a carnivorous sponge \\textit{Asbestopluma} sp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. R. Hendry

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The stable isotope composition of benthic sponge spicule silica is a potential source of palaeoceanographic information about past deep seawater chemistry. The silicon isotopic composition of spicules has been shown to relate to the silicic acid concentration of ambient water, although existing calibrations do exhibit a degree of scatter in the relationship. Less is known about how the oxygen isotope composition of sponge spicule silica relates to environmental conditions during growth. Here, we investigate the biological vital effects on silica silicon and oxygen isotope composition in a carnivorous sponge, Asbestopluma sp., from the Southern Ocean. We find significant variations in silicon and oxygen isotopic composition within the specimen that appear related to unusual spicule silicification. The largest variation in both isotope systems was associated to the differential distribution of an unconventional, hypersilicified spicule type (desma along the sponge body. The absence of an internal canal in the desmas suggests an unconventional silicification pattern leading to an unusually heavy isotopic signature. Additional internal variability derives from a systematic offset between the peripheral skeleton of the body having systematically a higher isotopic composition than the internal skeleton. A simplified silicon isotope fractionation model, in which desmas were excluded, suggests that the lack of a system for seawater pumping in carnivorous sponges favours a low replenishment of dissolved silicon within the internal tissues, causing kinetic fractionation during silicification that impacts the isotopic signature of the internal skeleton. Analysis of multiple spicules should be carried out to "average out" any artefacts in order to produce more robust downcore measurements.

  4. Consumption of benthic fauna by carnivorous birds in the Wadden Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheiffarth, G.; Nehls, G.

    1997-12-01

    Consumption by carnivorous birds was estimated for the Sylt-Rømø tidal inlet in the northern part of the Wadden Sea, as well as the subarea Königshafen, a small, tidal bay. The bird community of the Sylt-Rømø Wadden Sea was dominated by Dunlin (35% of all birds counted), Eider (9%), Oystercatcher (8%), Knot (8%), and Shelduck (7%). The community in the Königshafen was dominated by Eider (20%), Knot (17%), Bar-tailed Godwit (17%), Dunlin (13%), and Oystercatcher (8%). Annual consumption was estimated at 3.4 g AFDW · m-2 · year-1 for the entire Sylt-Rømø Wadden Sea and 19.2 g AFDW · m-2 · year-1 for the Königshafen. Restricting the calculations to the intertidal area resulted in a consumption of 8.7 g AFDW · m-2 · year-1 for the Sylt-Rømø Wadden Sea and 17.6 g AFDW · m-2 · year-1 for the Königshafen. In the two areas, consumption was dominated by the Eider with 37% and 60% of the total consumption, respectively. In comparison to the western parts of the Wadden Sea the seasonal pattern of consumption as well as species composition differed, most probably as an effect of different climatic conditions, whereas annual consumption on intertidal flats seems to be in the same order of magnitude. On average, 15 25% of the mean annual macrozoobenthic biomass seems to be taken by carnivorous birds in the Wadden Sea, which is in the same order of magnitude as in other northern temperate estuarine areas.

  5. The first sequenced carnivore genome shows complex host-endogenous retrovirus relationships.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Álvaro Martínez Barrio

    Full Text Available Host-retrovirus interactions influence the genomic landscape and have contributed substantially to mammalian genome evolution. To gain further insights, we analyzed a female boxer (Canis familiaris genome for complexity and integration pattern of canine endogenous retroviruses (CfERV. Intriguingly, the first such in-depth analysis of a carnivore species identified 407 CfERV proviruses that represent only 0.15% of the dog genome. In comparison, the same detection criteria identified about six times more HERV proviruses in the human genome that has been estimated to contain a total of 8% retroviral DNA including solitary LTRs. These observed differences in man and dog are likely due to different mechanisms to purge, restrict and protect their genomes against retroviruses. A novel group of gammaretrovirus-like CfERV with high similarity to HERV-Fc1 was found to have potential for active retrotransposition and possibly lateral transmissions between dog and human as a result of close interactions during at least 10.000 years. The CfERV integration landscape showed a non-uniform intra- and inter-chromosomal distribution. Like in other species, different densities of ERVs were observed. Some chromosomal regions were essentially devoid of CfERVs whereas other regions had large numbers of integrations in agreement with distinct selective pressures at different loci. Most CfERVs were integrated in antisense orientation within 100 kb from annotated protein-coding genes. This integration pattern provides evidence for selection against CfERVs in sense orientation relative to chromosomal genes. In conclusion, this ERV analysis of the first carnivorous species supports the notion that different mammals interact distinctively with endogenous retroviruses and suggests that retroviral lateral transmissions between dog and human may have occurred.

  6. Serologic evidence of canine parvovirus in domestic dogs, wild carnivores, and marsupials in the Argentinean Chaco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orozco, María Marcela; Miccio, Luciano; Enriquez, Gustavo Fabián; Iribarren, Fabián Eduardo; Gürtler, Ricardo Esteban

    2014-09-01

    The transmission of pathogens between domestic dogs and generalist wildlife species may be modified by environmental degradation, biodiversity losses, host densities, and increased contact rates in remnant forest patches. A serologic survey of canine parvovirus (CPV) in rural domestic dogs and wild mammals was conducted in two neighboring rural areas (disturbed and protected) from Pampa del Indio, northeastern Argentina, between 2008 and 2011. A total of 174 domestic dogs and 26 wild mammals-4 crab-eating foxes (Cerdocyon thous), 3 crab-eating raccoons (Procyon cancrivorus), 17 white-eared opossums (Didelphis albiventris), and 2 gray four-eyed opossums (Philander opossum)-were examined for antibodies to CPV using a hemagglutination inhibition assay. Domestic dogs were numerous and their movements unrestricted. The main function of dogs differed significantly between areas, with more dogs used for herding or hunting around the protected area. The seroprevalence of antibodies to CPV in dogs from both areas was very high (93.9-94.6%) and increased steeply with age. Nearly all carnivores and marsupials showed high exposure to CPV. Although a higher exposure to CPV was expected in wild mammals from disturbed areas as a result of enhanced contact between dogs and wildlife, no significant differences were found between areas. To the authors' knowledge, this study is the first to document exposure to CPV of free-ranging Pr. cancrivorus, D. albiventris, and Ph. opossum, and include a detailed demographic study of the domestic dog populations living in the area. This study highlights that dogs and wildlife have potential opportunities for contact and shows that the edges of the protected area may be as suitable as other fragmented areas for the transmission of CPV. Rural domestic dogs may pose serious threats to the health and conservation of wild carnivores in both disturbed and protected areas, especially in the Gran Chaco, where habitat fragmentation is severely

  7. Echinococcosis in wild carnivorous species: epidemiology, genotypic diversity, and implications for veterinary public health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmena, David; Cardona, Guillermo A

    2014-05-28

    Echinococcosis is a zoonosis caused by helminths of the genus Echinococcus. The infection, one of the 17 neglected tropical diseases listed by the World Health Organization, has a cosmopolitan distribution and can be transmitted through a variety of domestic, synanthropic, and sylvatic cycles. Wildlife has been increasingly regarded as a relevant source of infection to humans, as demonstrated by the fact that a significant proportion of human emerging infectious diseases have a wildlife origin. Based on available epidemiological and molecular evidence, of the nine Echinococcus species currently recognized as valid taxa, E. canadensis G8-G10, E. felidis, E. multilocularis, E. oligarthrus, E. shiquicus, and E. vogeli are primarily transmitted in the wild. E. canadensis G6-G7, E. equinus, E. granulosus s.s., and E. ortleppi are considered to be transmitted mainly through domestic cycles. We summarize here current knowledge on the global epidemiology, geographical distribution and genotype frequency of Echinococcus spp. in wild carnivorous species. Topics addressed include the significance of the wildlife/livestock/human interface, the sympatric occurrence of different Echinococcus species in a given epidemiological scenario, and the role of wildlife as natural reservoir of disease to human and domestic animal populations. We have also discussed the impact that human activity and intervention may cause in the transmission dynamics of echinococcosis, including the human population expansion an encroachment on shrinking natural habitats, the increasing urbanization of wildlife carnivorous species and the related establishment of synanthropic cycles of Echinococcus spp., the land use (e.g. deforestation and agricultural practices), and the unsupervised international trade and translocation of wildlife animals. Following the 'One Health' approach, we have also emphasized that successful veterinary public health interventions in the field of echinococcosis requires an

  8. Carnivore translocations and conservation: insights from population models and field data for fishers (Martes pennanti).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Jeffrey C; Powell, Roger A; Zielinski, William J

    2012-01-01

    Translocations are frequently used to restore extirpated carnivore populations. Understanding the factors that influence translocation success is important because carnivore translocations can be time consuming, expensive, and controversial. Using population viability software, we modeled reintroductions of the fisher, a candidate for endangered or threatened status in the Pacific states of the US. Our model predicts that the most important factor influencing successful re-establishment of a fisher population is the number of adult females reintroduced (provided some males are also released). Data from 38 translocations of fishers in North America, including 30 reintroductions, 5 augmentations and 3 introductions, show that the number of females released was, indeed, a good predictor of success but that the number of males released, geographic region and proximity of the source population to the release site were also important predictors. The contradiction between model and data regarding males may relate to the assumption in the model that all males are equally good breeders. We hypothesize that many males may need to be released to insure a sufficient number of good breeders are included, probably large males. Seventy-seven percent of reintroductions with known outcomes (success or failure) succeeded; all 5 augmentations succeeded; but none of the 3 introductions succeeded. Reintroductions were instrumental in reestablishing fisher populations within their historical range and expanding the range from its most-contracted state (43% of the historical range) to its current state (68% of the historical range). To increase the likelihood of translocation success, we recommend that managers: 1) release as many fishers as possible, 2) release more females than males (55-60% females) when possible, 3) release as many adults as possible, especially large males, 4) release fishers from a nearby source population, 5) conduct a formal feasibility assessment, and 6) develop

  9. Structural habitat predicts functional dispersal habitat of a large carnivore: how leopards change spots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fattebert, Julien; Robinson, Hugh S; Balme, Guy; Slotow, Rob; Hunter, Luke

    2015-10-01

    Natal dispersal promotes inter-population linkage, and is key to spatial distribution of populations. Degradation of suitable landscape structures beyond the specific threshold of an individual's ability to disperse can therefore lead to disruption of functional landscape connectivity and impact metapopulation function. Because it ignores behavioral responses of individuals, structural connectivity is easier to assess than functional connectivity and is often used as a surrogate for landscape connectivity modeling. However using structural resource selection models as surrogate for modeling functional connectivity through dispersal could be erroneous. We tested how well a second-order resource selection function (RSF) models (structural connectivity), based on GPS telemetry data from resident adult leopard (Panthera pardus L.), could predict subadult habitat use during dispersal (functional connectivity). We created eight non-exclusive subsets of the subadult data based on differing definitions of dispersal to assess the predictive ability of our adult-based RSF model extrapolated over a broader landscape. Dispersing leopards used habitats in accordance with adult selection patterns, regardless of the definition of dispersal considered. We demonstrate that, for a wide-ranging apex carnivore, functional connectivity through natal dispersal corresponds to structural connectivity as modeled by a second-order RSF. Mapping of the adult-based habitat classes provides direct visualization of the potential linkages between populations, without the need to model paths between a priori starting and destination points. The use of such landscape scale RSFs may provide insight into predicting suitable dispersal habitat peninsulas in human-dominated landscapes where mitigation of human-wildlife conflict should be focused. We recommend the use of second-order RSFs for landscape conservation planning and propose a similar approach to the conservation of other wide-ranging large

  10. Human-carnivore conflict in China: a review of current approaches with recommendations for improved management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettigrew, Melissa; Xie, Yan; Kang, Aili; Rao, Madhu; Goodrich, John; Liu, Tong; Berger, Joshua

    2012-06-01

    Human-wildlife conflict (HWC) is a conservation concern that increasingly threatens the continued existence of some of the world's most endangered species. With an increase in human population, urban sprawl and subsequent encroachment on wild land, human and wildlife interaction has become inevitable. In the majority of cases, this interaction results in a negative outcome for humans, wildlife or both. In China, these key elements, along with a decrease in wild prey species, have resulted in the expansion of HWC encounters, and the need for alleviating this conflict has become a conservation priority. Loss of human life, livestock and/or crops is most often the catalysts that fuel HWC. Techniques to alleviate conflict around the world have included preventative measures and mitigation techniques, such as financial compensation and other incentive programs. Both types of measures have had variable success. We review the current status of human-carnivore conflict management in China, and, drawing lessons from around the globe, we make recommendations for improving conservation management in China. For example, an increase in law enforcement in nature reserves is vital to reducing human disturbance in prime carnivore habitat, thereby reducing conflict encounters. Also, modifications to current wildlife compensation programs, so that they are linked with preventative measures, will ensure that moral hazards are avoided. Furthermore, investigating the potential for a community self-financed insurance scheme to fund compensation and increasing efforts to restore wild prey populations will improve the outcome for wildlife conservation. Ultimately, HWC management in China will greatly benefit from an integrative approach. PMID:22691204

  11. Clouded leopards, the secretive top-carnivore of South-East Asian rainforests: their distribution, status and conservation needs in Sabah, Malaysia

    OpenAIRE

    Linsenmair K Eduard; Abu Bakar Soffian; Fischer Frauke; Wilting Andreas

    2006-01-01

    Abstract Background The continued depletion of tropical rainforests and fragmentation of natural habitats has led to significant ecological changes which place most top carnivores under heavy pressure. Various methods have been used to determine the status of top carnivore populations in rainforest habitats, most of which are costly in terms of equipment and time. In this study we utilized, for the first time, a rigorous track classification method to estimate population size and density of c...

  12. Occurrence of oral diseases in neotropical wild carnivores kept in captivity at the zoo from Federal University of Mato Grosso – Cuiabá

    OpenAIRE

    Paula Márcia Marques de Campos Andrade; Thais Oliveira Morgado; Paulo Ricardo Mallmann; Paulo Roberto Spiller; Lianna Ghisi Gomes; Matias Bassinello Stocco; Andresa de Cássia Martini; Deise Cristine Schroder; Sandra Helena Ramiro Correa; Roberto Lopes Souza

    2015-01-01

    Control of oral lesions contributes directly to the health, survival and welfare of captive animals. In order to investigate the occurrence of oral diseases in neotropical wild carnivores kept at the zoo at the Federal University of Mato Grosso – Cuiabá, we evaluated 31 oral cavities from three families of carnivores (Felidae, Canidae and Procyonidae) between July 2012 and June 2013. Twelve coatis (Nasua nasua), three raccoons (Procyon cancrivorus), two maned wolves (Chrysocyon brachyurus), s...

  13. Echinococcus in the wild carnivores and stray dogs of northern Tunisia: the results of a pilot survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahmar, S; Boufana, B S; Lahmar, S; Inoubli, S; Guadraoui, M; Dhibi, M; Bradshaw, H; Craig, P S

    2009-06-01

    Echinococcus granulosus is endemic throughout Tunisia and E. multilocularis has previously been reported as the cause of two cases of human alveolar echinococcosis in the north-west of the country. The aim of the present study was to screen wild carnivores from the north-western Jendouba governorate and semi-stray dogs from the Siliana and Sejnane regions of northern Tunisia for these two zoonotic cestodes. The results of the coproscopy, coproELISA and coproPCR that were undertaken were compared with those of necropsy, where possible. Overall, 111 faecal samples (51 from wild carnivores and 60 from stray dogs) were tested by coproELISA for Echinococcus antigen and by coproPCR for E. granulosus and E. multilocularis species-specific DNA. All 60 dogs and seven of the wild carnivores were necropsied. Eleven (18.4%) of the dogs and one golden jackal (Canis aureus) were found positive for E. granulosus at necropsy. The jackal was found to be carrying 72 E. granulosus tapeworms, which were confirmed to be of the common sheep-dog (G1) genotype. Faecal samples from 10 (19.6%) of the wild carnivores--putatively, four golden jackals, two red foxes (Vulpes vulpes atlantica), one hyaena (Hyaena hyaena) and three genets (Genetta genetta)--gave a positive result in the Echinococcus coproELISA. In the coproPCR-based follow-up, E. granulosus DNA was detected in faecal samples from five jackals, two foxes and six stray dogs. The DNA of E. multilocularis was not, however, detected in any of the faecal samples investigated. This is the first report from Tunisia of (coproPCR-)confirmed E. granulosus infections in golden jackals and red foxes. The possible role of such wild hosts in the transmission of E. granulosus in Tunisia should be investigated further. The possibility of the active transmission of E. multilocularis in Tunisia still remains an open question. PMID:19508750

  14. The carnivore remains from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site(Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain)

    OpenAIRE

    Torres Pérez-Hidalgo, Trinidad José de

    1997-01-01

    Remains of carnivores from the Sima de los Huesos site representing at least 158 adult individuals of a primitive (i.e., not very speleoid) form of Ursus deningeri Von Reichenau 1906, have been recovered through the 1995 field season. These new finds extend our knowledge of this group in the Sierra de Atapuerca Middle Pleistocene. Material previously classified as Cuoninae indet. is now assigned to Canis lupus and a third metatarsal assigned in 1987 to Panthera cf. gombaszoe...

  15. Evolutionary Histories of Transposable Elements in the Genome of the Largest Living Marsupial Carnivore, the Tasmanian Devil

    OpenAIRE

    Gallus, Susanne; Hallström, Björn M.; Kumar, Vikas; Dodt, William G; Janke, Axel; Schumann, Gerald G.; Nilsson, Maria A.

    2015-01-01

    The largest living carnivorous marsupial, the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), is the sole survivor of a lineage originating about 12 Ma. We set out to investigate the spectrum of transposable elements found in the Tasmanian devil genome, the first high-coverage genome of an Australian marsupial. Marsupial genomes have been shown to have the highest amount of transposable elements among vertebrates. We analyzed the horizontally transmitted DNA transposons OC1 and hAT-1_MEu in the Tasma...

  16. Transmission of a fatal clonal tumor by biting occurs due to depleted MHC diversity in a threatened carnivorous marsupial

    OpenAIRE

    Siddle, Hannah V; Kreiss, Alexandre; Eldridge, Mark D. B.; Noonan, Erin; Clarke, Candice J.; Pyecroft, Stephen; Woods, Gregory M.; Belov, Katherine

    2007-01-01

    A fatal transmissible tumor spread between individuals by biting has emerged in the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), a carnivorous marsupial. Here we provide genetic evidence establishing that the tumor is clonal and therefore foreign to host devils. Thus, the disease is highly unusual because it is not just a tumor but also a tissue graft, passed between individuals without invoking an immune response. The MHC plays a key role in immune responses to both tumors and grafts. The most co...

  17. A hypothetico-deductive approach to assessing the social function of chemical signalling in a non-territorial solitary carnivore.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Clapham

    Full Text Available The function of chemical signalling in non-territorial solitary carnivores is still relatively unclear. Studies on territorial solitary and social carnivores have highlighted odour capability and utility, however the social function of chemical signalling in wild carnivore populations operating dominance hierarchy social systems has received little attention. We monitored scent marking and investigatory behaviour of wild brown bears Ursus arctos, to test multiple hypotheses relating to the social function of chemical signalling. Camera traps were stationed facing bear 'marking trees' to document behaviour by different age sex classes in different seasons. We found evidence to support the hypothesis that adult males utilise chemical signalling to communicate dominance to other males throughout the non-denning period. Adult females did not appear to utilise marking trees to advertise oestrous state during the breeding season. The function of marking by subadult bears is somewhat unclear, but may be related to the behaviour of adult males. Subadults investigated trees more often than they scent marked during the breeding season, which could be a result of an increased risk from adult males. Females with young showed an increase in marking and investigation of trees outside of the breeding season. We propose the hypothesis that females engage their dependent young with marking trees from a young age, at a relatively 'safe' time of year. Memory, experience, and learning at a young age, may all contribute towards odour capabilities in adult bears.

  18. Isotopic Incorporation and the Effects of Fasting and Dietary Lipid Content on Isotopic Discrimination in Large Carnivorous Mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rode, K D; Stricker, C A; Erlenbach, J; Robbins, C T; Cherry, S G; Newsome, S D; Cutting, A; Jensen, S; Stenhouse, G; Brooks, M; Hash, A; Nicassio, N

    2016-01-01

    There has been considerable emphasis on understanding isotopic discrimination for diet estimation in omnivores. However, discrimination may differ for carnivores, particularly species that consume lipid-rich diets. Here, we examined the potential implications of several factors when using stable isotopes to estimate the diets of bears, which can consume lipid-rich diets and, alternatively, fast for weeks to months. We conducted feeding trials with captive brown bears (Ursus arctos) and polar bears (Ursus maritimus). As dietary lipid content increased to ∼90%, we observed increasing differences between blood plasma and diets that had not been lipid extracted (∆(13)Ctissue-bulk diet) and slightly decreasing differences between plasma δ(13)C and lipid-extracted diet. Plasma Δ(15)Ntissue-bulk diet increased with increasing protein content for the four polar bears in this study and data for other mammals from previous studies that were fed purely carnivorous diets. Four adult and four yearling brown bears that fasted 120 d had plasma δ(15)N values that changed by carnivores has minimal effects on δ(13)C and δ(15)N discrimination between predators and their prey but that dietary lipid content is an important factor directly affecting δ(13)C discrimination and indirectly affecting δ(15)N discrimination via the inverse relationship with dietary protein content. PMID:27153128

  19. The competitor release effect applied to carnivore species: how red foxes can increase in numbers when persecuted

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lozano, J.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of our study was to numerically simulate the population dynamics of a hypothetical community of three species of small to medium–sized carnivores subjected to non–selective control within the context of the competitor release effect (CRE. We applied the CRE to three carnivore species, linking interspecific competition with predator control efforts. We predicted the population response of European badger, the red fox and the pine marten to this wildlife management tool by means of numerical simulations. The theoretical responses differed depending on the intrinsic rate of growth (r, although modulated by the competition coefficients. The red fox, showing the highest r value, can increase its populations despite predator control efforts if control intensity is moderate. Populations of the other two species, however, decreased with control efforts, even reaching extinction. Three additional theoretical predictions were obtained. The conclusions from the simulations were: 1 predator control can play a role in altering the carnivore communities; 2 red fox numbers can increase due to control; and 3 predator control programs should evaluate the potential of unintended effects on ecosystems.

  20. Persistence of canine distemper virus in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem's carnivore community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almberg, E.S.; Cross, P.C.; Smith, D.W.

    2010-01-01

    Canine distemper virus (CDV) is an acute, highly immunizing pathogen that should require high densities and large populations of hosts for long-term persistence, yet CDV persists among terrestrial carnivores with small, patchily distributed groups. We used CDV in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem's (GYE) wolves (Canis lupus) and coyotes (Canis latrans) as a case study for exploring how metapopulation structure, host demographics, and multi-host transmission affect the critical community size and spatial scale required for CDV persistence. We illustrate how host spatial connectivity and demographic turnover interact to affect both local epidemic dynamics, such as the length and variation in inter-epidemic periods, and pathogen persistence using stochastic, spatially explicit susceptible-exposed-infectious-recovered simulation models. Given the apparent absence of other known persistence mechanisms (e.g., a carrier or environmental state, densely populated host, chronic infection, or a vector), we suggest that CDV requires either large spatial scales or multi-host transmission for persistence. Current GYE wolf populations are probably too small to support endemic CDV. Coyotes are a plausible reservoir host, but CDV would still require 50 000-100 000 individuals for moderate persistence (>50% over 10 years), which would equate to an area of 1-3 times the size of the GYE (60000-200000 km2). Coyotes, and carnivores in general, are not uniformly distributed; therefore, this is probably a gross underestimate of the spatial scale of CDV persistence. However, the presence of a second competent host species can greatly increase the probability of long-term CDV persistence at much smaller spatial scales. Although no management of CDV is currently recommended for the GYE, wolf managers in the region should expect periodic but unpredictable CDV-related population declines as often as every 2-5 years. Awareness and monitoring of such outbreaks will allow corresponding

  1. Parasite species of the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus) and a sympatric widespread carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figueiredo, Ana; Oliveira, Lucia; Madeira de Carvalho, Luís; Fonseca, Carlos; Torres, Rita Tinoco

    2016-08-01

    Parasites have a profound impact on wildlife population dynamics. However, until some years ago, studies on the occurrence and prevalence of wildlife parasites were neglected comparatively with the studies on humans and domestic animals. In this study, we determined the parasite prevalence of two sympatric wild canids: the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus) and the widespread red fox (Vulpes vulpes), in central Portugal. From November 2014 to July 2015, fresh fecal samples from both species were collected monthly in several transects distributed throughout the study area. All samples were submitted to several coprological techniques. In total, 6 helminth parasites (Crenosoma vulpis, Angiostrongylus vasorum, Toxocara canis, Trichuris vulpis, Ancylostomatidae, Toxascaris leonina), and a protozoa (Balantidium coli) were identified based on size and morphology. The red fox was infected by seven different parasites while the Iberian wolf was infected by four. All parasites present in wolf were also present in the red fox. C. vulpis had the higher prevalence in red fox, while Ancylostomatidae were the most prevalent parasites in wolf. To our knowledge, this is the first study in this isolated subpopulation of the Iberian wolf. Our results show that both carnivores carry parasites that are of concern as they are pathogenic to humans and other wild and domestic animals. We suggest that surveillance programs must also include monitoring protocols of wildlife; particularly endangered species. PMID:27358768

  2. Would carnosine or a carnivorous diet help suppress aging and associated pathologies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hipkiss, Alan R

    2006-05-01

    Carnosine (beta-alanyl-L-histidine) is found exclusively in animal tissues. Carnosine has the potential to suppress many of the biochemical changes (e.g., protein oxidation, glycation, AGE formation, and cross-linking) that accompany aging and associated pathologies. Glycation, generation of advanced glycosylation end-products (AGEs), and formation of protein carbonyl groups play important roles in aging, diabetes, its secondary complications, and neurodegenerative conditions. Due to carnosine's antiglycating activity, reactivity toward deleterious carbonyls, zinc- and copper-chelating activity and low toxicity, carnosine and related structures could be effective against age-related protein carbonyl stress. It is suggested that carnivorous diets could be beneficial because of their carnosine content, as the dipeptide has been shown to suppress some diabetic complications in mice. It is also suggested that carnosine's therapeutic potential should be explored with respect to neurodegeneration. Olfactory tissue is normally enriched in carnosine, but olfactory dysfunction is frequently associated with neurodegeneration. Olfactory administration of carnosine could provide a direct route to compromised tissue, avoiding serum carnosinases. PMID:16804013

  3. GASTROINTESTINAL PARASITES OF CAPTIVE AND FREE-LIVING LEMURS AND DOMESTIC CARNIVORES IN EASTERN MADAGASCAR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Amy B; Poirotte, Clémence; Porton, Ingrid J; Freeman, Karen L M; Rasambainarivo, Fidisoa; Olson, Kimberly G; Iambana, Bernard; Deem, Sharon L

    2016-03-01

    Fecal samples from captive and free-living lemurs at Ivoloina Zoological Park (IZP) and domestic carnivores from six villages surrounding IZP were evaluated between July and August 2012. Free-living lemurs from Betampona Natural Reserve (BNR), a relatively pristine rainforest fragment 40 km away, were also evaluated in November 2013. All 33 dogs sampled (100%) and 16 of 22 cats sampled (72.7%) were parasitized, predominantly with nematodes (strongyles, ascarids, and spirurids) as well as cestodes and protozoans. Similar types of parasites were identified in the lemur populations. Identification of spirurid nematodes and protozoans in the lemur fecal samples were of concern due to previously documented morbidity and mortality in lemurs from these parasitic agents. Twelve of 13 free-living (93%) and 31 of 49 captive (63%) lemurs sampled at IZP had a higher parasite prevalence than lemurs at BNR, with 13 of 24 (54%) being parasitized. The lemurs in BNR are likely at risk of increased exposure to these parasites and, therefore, increased morbidity and mortality, as humans and their domestic animals are encroaching on this natural area. PMID:27010275

  4. [Species-specific features of tocopherol content in carnivorous mammals during autumn period].

    Science.gov (United States)

    il'ina, T N; Baishnikova, I V

    2015-01-01

    A comparative study of the major liposoluble antioxidant, vitamin E (α-tocopherol), content was conducted in carnivorous mammals (polar fox, silver fox, raccoon dog, mink, sable) during late autumn under natural lowering of temperature. The highest vitamin E content in liver and kidney was found in polar fox and raccoon dog, obviously due to seasonal metabolic changes and ecological specialization determining the accumulation of considerable amounts of tocopherol both in polar and hibernating species. To investigate the features of vitamin E accumulation, the tocopherol loading experiment was implemented on three species (polar fox, silver fox, mink). It was shown that polar fox, as compared to silverfox and mink, exhibits a higher ability to reserve vitamin E. The established differences in tocopherol content and distribution in different species should be considered as a genetically fixed reaction to the effect of environment underlain by metabolic differences in animals with different ecological specialization. The ability of tocopherol to accumulate in tissues and organs allows considering its essential role in stabilization of the antioxidant system and ensuring thereby a seasonal cold resistance. PMID:25859604

  5. Carnivorous dinocephalian from the Middle Permian of Brazil and tetrapod dispersal in Pangaea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cisneros, Juan Carlos; Abdala, Fernando; Atayman-Güven, Saniye; Rubidge, Bruce S.; Celâl Şengör, A. M.; Schultz, Cesar L.

    2012-01-01

    The medial Permian (∼270-260 Ma: Guadalupian) was a time of important tetrapod faunal changes, in particular reflecting a turnover from pelycosaurian- to therapsid-grade synapsids. Until now, most knowledge on tetrapod distribution during the medial Permian has come from fossils found in the South African Karoo and the Russian Platform, whereas other areas of Pangaea are still poorly known. We present evidence for the presence of a terrestrial carnivorous vertebrate from the Middle Permian of South America based on a complete skull. Pampaphoneus biccai gen. et sp. nov. was a dinocephalian "mammal-like reptile" member of the Anteosauridae, an early therapsid predator clade known only from the Middle Permian of Russia, Kazakhstan, China, and South Africa. The genus is characterized, among other features, by postorbital bosses, short, bulbous postcanines, and strongly recurved canines. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that the Brazilian dinocephalian occupies a middle position within the Anteosauridae, reinforcing the model of a global distribution for therapsids as early as the Guadalupian. The close phylogenetic relationship of the Brazilian species to dinocephalians from South Africa and the Russian Platform suggests a closer faunistic relationship between South America and eastern Europe than previously thought, lending support to a Pangaea B-type continental reconstruction.

  6. Rodents as shared indicators for zoonotic parasites of carnivores in urban environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reperant, L A; Hegglin, D; Tanner, I; Fischer, C; Deplazes, P

    2009-03-01

    Rodents are shared intermediate or paratenic hosts for Echinococcus multilocularis, Toxocara spp. and Toxoplasma gondii, and may serve as valuable indicators for assessing the occurrence and the level of environmental contamination and infection pressure with free-living stages of these zoonotic parasites. We investigated 658 non-commensal rodents for parasite infections in the canton of Geneva, Switzerland. The prevalence of infection with E. multilocularis was highest in Arvicola terrestris captured in the north-western area (16.5%, CI: 10.1%-24.8%), possibly reflecting a higher red fox density due to the low incidence of sarcoptic mange in this part of the canton. The exposure rate to Toxocara spp. was highest in the urban area (13.2%, CI: 7.9%-20.3%), and may account for higher densities of domestic carnivore and red fox definitive hosts within the city. Exposure to T. gondii was widespread (5.0%, CI: 3.2-7.4%), indicating a ubiquitous distribution of infected cat definitive hosts. Interestingly, a widespread distribution of Taenia taeniaeformis, a parasite mainly transmitted by cats, was similarly evidenced in A. terrestris. Distinct spatial patterns for the different zoonotic parasites likely reflected differences in distribution, abundance, and habitat use of the respective definitive hosts. These results highlight the potential value of rodents as shared indicators for these pathogens. PMID:19154652

  7. Parasite species of the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus and a sympatric widespread carnivore

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Figueiredo

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Parasites have a profound impact on wildlife population dynamics. However, until some years ago, studies on the occurrence and prevalence of wildlife parasites were neglected comparatively with the studies on humans and domestic animals. In this study, we determined the parasite prevalence of two sympatric wild canids: the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus and the widespread red fox (Vulpes vulpes, in central Portugal. From November 2014 to July 2015, fresh fecal samples from both species were collected monthly in several transects distributed throughout the study area. All samples were submitted to several coprological techniques. In total, 6 helminth parasites (Crenosoma vulpis, Angiostrongylus vasorum, Toxocara canis, Trichuris vulpis, Ancylostomatidae, Toxascaris leonina, and a protozoa (Balantidium coli were identified based on size and morphology. The red fox was infected by seven different parasites while the Iberian wolf was infected by four. All parasites present in wolf were also present in the red fox. C. vulpis had the higher prevalence in red fox, while Ancylostomatidae were the most prevalent parasites in wolf. To our knowledge, this is the first study in this isolated subpopulation of the Iberian wolf. Our results show that both carnivores carry parasites that are of concern as they are pathogenic to humans and other wild and domestic animals. We suggest that surveillance programs must also include monitoring protocols of wildlife; particularly endangered species.

  8. Hominin-carnivore interactions during the Chinese Early Paleolithic: taphonomic perspectives from Xujiayao.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norton, Christopher J; Gao, Xing

    2008-07-01

    The ability of archaic Homo sapiens to survive in more northerly latitudes was contingent on securing a regular source of animal fat and protein. We present a taphonomic study that examines how successful these hominins were at acquiring these food sources during the latter part of the Early Paleolithic in Northeast Asia. This study focuses on the long bone midshaft surface modifications observed on the faunal remains from Xujiayao, a middle-late Pleistocene open-air site located at 40 degrees latitude in the western Nihewan Basin, northern China. The faunal assemblage is dominated by equid remains. Analysis of the percussion, tooth, and cut mark frequencies on the long bone midshafts demonstrates that the Xujiayao hominins had primary access to high utility (meat-bearing and marrow-rich) long bones. Investigation of the dual-patterned (tooth-marked and butchery-marked) bone fragments suggests that hominins were under little pressure from competing carnivores to abandon their kills. The lack of significant differences between the size of fragments with only percussion-marks and those with only tooth-marks supports these findings. Fragmentation ratios indicate that forelimbs were more intensively processed than hind limbs. Based on the water rounding and abrasion data, the Xujiayao assemblage is likely of autochthonous origin. Since the age of Xujiayao is still in question, we can only conclude that archaic Homo sapiens were successful predators of large game in Northeast Asia some time during the latter part of the Early Paleolithic. PMID:18387651

  9. Isolation and phylogenetic analysis of Bartonella species from wild carnivores of the suborder Caniformia in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Shingo; Kabeya, Hidenori; Miura, Tatsuya; Suzuki, Kazuo; Bai, Ying; Kosoy, Michael; Sentsui, Hiroshi; Kariwa, Hiroaki; Maruyama, Soichi

    2012-12-28

    The prevalence of Bartonella species was investigated among wild carnivores of the suborder Caniformia, including 15 Japanese badgers (Meles anakuma), 8 Japanese martens (Martes melampus), 2 Japanese weasels (Mustela itatsi), 1 Siberian weasel (Mustela sibirica), 171 raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides), and 977 raccoons (Procyon lotor) in Japan. Bartonella bacteria were isolated from one Japanese badger (6.7%) and from one Japanese marten (12.5%); however, no Bartonella species was found in other representatives of Caniformia. Phylogenetic analysis was based on concatenated sequences of six housekeeping genes (16S rRNA, ftsZ, gltA, groEL, ribC, and rpoB) and sequence of the 16S-23S internal transcribed spacer region. The sequence analysis indicated that the isolate derived from the Japanese badger (strain JB-15) can represent a novel Bartonella species and the isolate from the Japanese marten (strain JM-1) was closely related to Bartonella washoensis. This is the first report on isolation of Bartonella from badger and marten. PMID:22841404

  10. Coprological prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in carnivores and small mammals at Dhaka zoo, Bangladesh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.M.R.U. Raja

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available A study on the coprological prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites using 94 faecal samples from different carnivores (n=32 and small mammals (n=15 was undertaken from January to May 2012 at Dhaka Zoo. The overall prevalence of parasitic infection was 78.72%, with a prevalence of 51.06% for helminths and 27.66% for protozoa. The identified parasites included—Toxascaris leonina (9.57%, Balantidium coli (25.53% Spirometra sp. (10.64%, Toxocara cati (12.76%, Hook worm (4.26%, unidentified strongyles (3.19%, Trichuris sp. (7.45%, Coccidia sp. (2.12%, Capillaria sp. (1.06%, Trichostrongylus sp. (1.06%, and Physaloptera sp. (1.06%. Mixed infection was observed in Indian Lion (Toxascaris leonina and Spirometra sp., Royal Bengal Tiger (Balantidium coli and Toxocara cati, Spotted Hyena (Balantidium coli and hook worm, Leopard (Balantidium coli and Spirometra/I> sp., Rhesus Macaque (Trichuris sp. and Coccidia sp., Pig-tailed Macaque (Balantidium coli and Trichuris sp., Hamadryas Baboon (Balantidium coli and Trichuris sp., Golden Mangabey (Trichuris sp., Balantidium coli and unidentified strongyles, Large Indian Civet (Balantidium coli and unidentified strongyles, Torior Dog (Balantidium coli and Physaloptera, Rabbit (Balantidium coli and Hook worm, Hanuman Langur (Balantidium coli and Capillaria sp.. Due to the high prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites, the present study suggests to apply control measures against these parasites in order to safeguard the health of housed wild animals, especially in case of threatened species.

  11. Evaluating the responses of a territorial solitary carnivore to potential mates and competitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Maximilian L; Yovovich, Veronica; Wilmers, Christopher C

    2016-01-01

    Successful communication is critical to the fitness of individuals and maintenance of populations, but less is known regarding the social contexts and reactions to scent marking by other individuals in solitary carnivores, including pumas. We evaluated the responses of resident male pumas to visitation and scent marking by potential competitors (other male pumas) and potential mates (female pumas) by capturing and marking 46 pumas (Puma concolor), and documenting scent marking behaviours using motion-triggered video cameras. By comparing resident male puma visitation rates and communication behaviours in response to either male or female visitors, we found that their visitation and communication behaviours were best explained by the combination of visitation by both competitors and potential mates. Resident males returned to scent marking sites more quickly and increased their rate of flehmen response after visitation by a females, while they increased their rate of visitation and duration of visits in response to other males. Male pumas also visited less frequently in summer and autumn when female visitation rates were lower, but males created nearly twice as many scrapes during these visits. This study suggests that advertising for mates when scent marking may sometimes overshadow the importance of deterring competitors and claiming territory. PMID:27251230

  12. The vocal repertoire in a solitary foraging carnivore, Cynictis penicillata, may reflect facultative sociality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Roux, Aliza; Cherry, Michael I.; Manser, Marta B.

    2009-05-01

    We describe the vocal repertoire of a facultatively social carnivore, the yellow mongoose, Cynictis penicillata. Using a combination of close-range observations, recordings and experiments with simulated predators, we were able to obtain clear descriptions of call structure and function for a wide range of calls used by this herpestid. The vocal repertoire of the yellow mongooses comprised ten call types, half of which were used in appeasing or fearful contexts and half in aggressive interactions. Data from this study suggest that the yellow mongoose uses an urgency-based alarm calling system, indicating high and low urgency through two distinct call types. Compared to solitary mongooses, the yellow mongoose has a large proportion of ‘friendly’ vocalisations that enhance group cohesion, but its vocal repertoire is smaller and less context-specific than those of obligate social species. This study of the vocal repertoire of the yellow mongoose is, to our knowledge, the most complete to have been conducted on a facultatively social species in its natural habitat.

  13. Patterns of morphological integration in the appendicular skeleton of mammalian carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín-Serra, Alberto; Figueirido, Borja; Pérez-Claros, Juan Antonio; Palmqvist, Paul

    2015-02-01

    We investigated patterns of evolutionary integration in the appendicular skeleton of mammalian carnivores. The findings are discussed in relation to performance selection in terms of organismal function as a potential mechanism underlying integration. Interspecific shape covariation was quantified by two-block partial least-squares (2B-PLS) analysis of 3D landmark data within a phylogenetic context. Specifically, we compared pairs of anatomically connected bones (within-limbs) and pairs of both serially homologous and functional equivalent bones (between-limbs). The statistical results of all the comparisons suggest that the carnivoran appendicular skeleton is highly integrated. Strikingly, the main shape covariation relates to bone robustness in all cases. A bootstrap test was used to compare the degree of integration between specialized cursorial taxa (i.e., those whose forelimbs are primarily involved in locomotion) and noncursorial species (i.e., those whose forelimbs are involved in more functions than their hindlimb) showed that cursors have a more integrated appendicular skeleton than noncursors. The findings demonstrate that natural selection can influence the pattern and degree of morphological integration by increasing the degree of bone shape covariation in parallel to ecological specialization. PMID:25403786

  14. Hearing in the sea otter (Enhydra lutris): auditory profiles for an amphibious marine carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghoul, Asila; Reichmuth, Colleen

    2014-11-01

    In this study we examine the auditory capabilities of the sea otter (Enhydra lutris), an amphibious marine mammal that remains virtually unstudied with respect to its sensory biology. We trained an adult male sea otter to perform a psychophysical task in an acoustic chamber and at an underwater apparatus. Aerial and underwater audiograms were constructed from detection thresholds for narrowband signals measured in quiet conditions at frequencies from 0.125-40 kHz. Aerial hearing thresholds were also measured in the presence of octave-band masking noise centered at eight signal frequencies (0.25-22.6 kHz) so that critical ratios could be determined. The aerial audiogram of the sea otter resembled that of sea lions and showed a reduction in low-frequency sensitivity relative to terrestrial mustelids. Best sensitivity was -1 dB re 20 µPa at 8 kHz. Under water, hearing sensitivity was significantly reduced when compared to sea lions and other pinniped species, demonstrating that sea otter hearing is primarily adapted to receive airborne sounds. Critical ratios were more than 10 dB higher than those measured for pinnipeds, suggesting that sea otters are less efficient than other marine carnivores at extracting acoustic signals from background noise, especially at frequencies below 2 kHz. PMID:25249386

  15. ISOLATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF CHITINASE GENE FROM THE UNTRADITIONAL PLANT SPECIES

    OpenAIRE

    Dominika Ďurechová; Ildikó Matušíková; Jana Moravčíková; Martin Jopčík; Jana Libantová

    2013-01-01

    Round-leaf sundew (Drosera rotundifolia L.) from Droseraceae family belongs among a few plant species with strong antifungal potential. It was previously shown that chitinases of carnivorous plant species may play role during the insect prey digestion, when hard chitin skeleton is being decomposed. As many phytopathogenic fungi contain chitin in their cell wall our attention in this work was focused on isolation and in silico characterization of genomic DNA sequence of sundew chitinase gene. ...

  16. Development and characterization of microsatellite markers in Sarracenia L. (pitcher plant) species

    OpenAIRE

    Rogers, Willie L.; Cruse-Sanders, Jennifer M; Determann, Ron; Malmberg, Russell L.

    2010-01-01

    Sarracenia species (pitcher plants) are carnivorous plants which obtain a portion of their nutrients from insects captured in the pitchers. Sarracenia species naturally hybridize with each other, and hybrid swarms have been identified. A number of the taxa within the genus are considered endangered. In order to facilitate evolutionary, ecological and conservation genetic analyses within the genus, we developed 25 microsatellite loci which show variability either within species or between spec...

  17. Differences in Volatile Profiles of Turnip Plants Subjected to Single and Dual Herbivory Above- and Belowground

    OpenAIRE

    Pierre, P.S.; Jansen, J.J.; Hordijk, C.A.; Dam, N.M. van; Cortesero, A.M.; Dugravot, S.

    2011-01-01

    Plants attacked by herbivorous insects emit volatile organic compounds that are used by natural enemies to locate their host or prey. The composition of the blend is often complex and specific. It may vary qualitatively and quantitatively according to plant and herbivore species, thus providing specific information for carnivorous arthropods. Most studies have focused on simple interactions that involve one species per trophic level, and typically have investigated the aboveground parts of pl...

  18. Les Néandertaliens étaient-ils essentiellement carnivores ? Résultats préliminaires sur les teneurs en Sr et en Ba de la paléobiocénose mammalienne de Saint-CésaireWere Neandertalians essentially carnivores? Sr and Ba preliminary results of the mammalian palaeobiocoenosis of Saint-Césaire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balter, Vincent; Person, Alain; Labourdette, Nathalie; Drucker, Dorothée; Renard, Maurice; Vandermeersch, Bernard

    2001-01-01

    Strontium-calcium (Sr/Ca) and barium-calcium (Ba/Ca) ratios are reduced constantly between diet and bioapatite in mammal organisms. This phenomenon leads to a reduction in the Sr/Ca and Ba/Ca ratios at higher trophic level in predator-prey mammalian communities, and is applied here to the reconstruction of a castelperronian food web, which includes a Neanderthal specimen. Adapted chemical pretreatment allows to isolate bioapatite from diagenetic compounds for analysis of Ca, Sr and Ba. Sr/Ca and Ba/Ca results of the fauna are consistent with trophic predictions. Initial results for the Neandertal suggest that he was mostly carnivorous. Distribution of Ba/Ca values of bones of herbivorous taxa reveals that ruminant animals can be distinguished from non-ruminants. The biosegregation model predicts that the diet of the Neandertal was composed by about 97 % in weight of meat with a weak contribution of vegetable or fish, and that the association of fish and plant is excluded in any proportion.

  19. Risk assessment of metals and organic pollutants for herbivorous and carnivorous small mammal food chains in a polluted floodplain (Biesbosch, The Netherlands)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hamers, Timo [Wageningen University, Toxicology Group, PO Box 8000, 6700 EA Wageningen (Netherlands)]. E-mail: timo.hamers@ivm.falw.vu.nl; Berg, Johannes H.J. van den [Wageningen University, Toxicology Group, PO Box 8000, 6700 EA Wageningen (Netherlands); Gestel, Cornelis A.M. van [Vrije Universiteit, Department of Animal Ecology, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands); Schooten, Frederik-Jan van [Maastricht University, Department of Health Risk Analysis and Toxicology, PO Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht (Netherlands); Murk, Albertinka J. [Wageningen University, Toxicology Group, PO Box 8000, 6700 EA Wageningen (Netherlands)

    2006-11-15

    A risk assessment was made for a carnivorous and a herbivorous food chain in a heavily polluted natural estuary (Biesbosch), by determining the most critical pollutants and the food chain most at risk. Exposure of food chains to metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) was assessed by analyzing dietary concentrations, internal concentrations, and biomarkers of exposure. Common shrew (Sorex araneus) and bank vole (Clethrionomys glareolus) were selected as representative small mammal species for the carnivorous and herbivorous food chain, respectively, and earthworms (Lumbricus rubellus) and snails (Cepaea nemoralis) as representative prey species for the carnivorous food chain. Metals contributed most to the total risk for small mammals and earthworms. PCBs, but not PAHs, contributed to the overall risk for S. araneus at regularly flooded locations. The carnivorous food chain appeared most at risk given the higher exposure levels and bioaccumulating potency found for contaminants in S. araneus. - In polluted floodplain areas, dietary exposure to metals poses a larger risk for small mammals in a carnivorous than in a herbivorous food chain.

  20. Risk assessment of metals and organic pollutants for herbivorous and carnivorous small mammal food chains in a polluted floodplain (Biesbosch, The Netherlands)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A risk assessment was made for a carnivorous and a herbivorous food chain in a heavily polluted natural estuary (Biesbosch), by determining the most critical pollutants and the food chain most at risk. Exposure of food chains to metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) was assessed by analyzing dietary concentrations, internal concentrations, and biomarkers of exposure. Common shrew (Sorex araneus) and bank vole (Clethrionomys glareolus) were selected as representative small mammal species for the carnivorous and herbivorous food chain, respectively, and earthworms (Lumbricus rubellus) and snails (Cepaea nemoralis) as representative prey species for the carnivorous food chain. Metals contributed most to the total risk for small mammals and earthworms. PCBs, but not PAHs, contributed to the overall risk for S. araneus at regularly flooded locations. The carnivorous food chain appeared most at risk given the higher exposure levels and bioaccumulating potency found for contaminants in S. araneus. - In polluted floodplain areas, dietary exposure to metals poses a larger risk for small mammals in a carnivorous than in a herbivorous food chain

  1. The capacity for long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid synthesis in a carnivorous vertebrate: Functional characterisation and nutritional regulation of a Fads2 fatty acyl desaturase with Δ4 activity and an Elovl5 elongase in striped snakehead (Channa striata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuah, Meng-Kiat; Jaya-Ram, Annette; Shu-Chien, Alexander Chong

    2015-03-01

    The endogenous production of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) in carnivorous teleost species inhabiting freshwater environments is poorly understood. Although a predatory lifestyle could potentially supply sufficient LC-PUFA to satisfy the requirements of these species, the nutrient-poor characteristics of the freshwater food web could impede this advantage. In this study, we report the cloning and functional characterisation of an elongase enzyme in the LC-PUFA biosynthesis pathway from striped snakehead (Channa striata), which is a strict freshwater piscivore that shows high deposition of LC-PUFA in its flesh. We also functionally characterised a previously isolated fatty acyl desaturase cDNA from this species. Results showed that the striped snakehead desaturase is capable of Δ4 and Δ5 desaturation activities, while the elongase showed the characteristics of Elovl5 elongases. Collectively, these findings reveal that striped snakehead exhibits the genetic resources to synthesise docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6n-3) from eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; 20:5n-3). Both genes are expressed at considerable levels in the brain and the liver. In liver, both genes were up-regulated by dietary C18 PUFA, although this increase did not correspond to a significant rise in the deposition of muscle LC-PUFA. Brain tissue of fish fed with plant oil diets showed higher expression of fads2 gene compared to fish fed with fish oil-based diet, which could ensure DHA levels remain constant under limited dietary DHA intake. This suggests the importance of DHA production from EPA via the ∆4 desaturation step in order to maintain an optimal reserve of DHA in the neuronal tissues of carnivores. PMID:25542509

  2. Comparative neuronal morphology of the cerebellar cortex in afrotherians, carnivores, cetartiodactyls, and primates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bob Jacobs

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Although the basic morphological characteristics of neurons in the cerebellar cortex have been documented in several species, virtually nothing is known about the quantitative morphological characteristics of these neurons across different taxa. To that end, the present study investigated cerebellar neuronal morphology among eight different, large-brained mammalian species comprising a broad phylogenetic range: afrotherians (African elephant, Florida manatee, carnivores (Siberian tiger, clouded leopard, cetartiodactyls (humpback whale, giraffe and primates (human, common chimpanzee. Specifically, several neuron types (e.g., stellate, basket, Lugaro, Golgi, and granule neurons; N = 317 of the cerebellar cortex were stained with a modified rapid Golgi technique and quantified on a computer-assisted microscopy system. There was a 64-fold variation in brain mass across species in our sample (from clouded leopard to the elephant and a 103-fold variation in cerebellar volume. Most dendritic measures tended to increase with cerebellar volume. The cerebellar cortex in these species exhibited the trilaminate pattern common to all mammals. Morphologically, neuron types in the cerebellar cortex were generally consistent with those described in primates (Fox et al., 1967 and rodents (Palay and Chan-Palay, 1974, although there was substantial quantitative variation across species. In particular, Lugaro neurons in the elephant appeared to be disproportionately larger than those in other species. To explore potential quantitative differences in dendritic measures across species, MARSplines analyses were used to evaluate whether species could be differentiated from each other based on dendritic characteristics alone. Results of these analyses indicated that there were significant differences among all species in dendritic measures.

  3. Wild carnivore acceptance of baits for delivery of liquid rabies vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachmann, P; Bramwell, R N; Fraser, S J; Gilmore, D A; Johnston, D H; Lawson, K F; MacInnes, C D; Matejka, F O; Miles, H E; Pedde, M A

    1990-10-01

    A series of experiments are described on the acceptance, by red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and other species, of two types of vaccine-baits intended to deliver liquid rabies vaccine. The baits consisted of a cube of sponge coated in a mixture of tallow and wax, or a plastic blister-pack embedded in tallow. All baits contained tetracycline as a biological marking agent: examination of thin sections of carnivore canines under an ultraviolet microscope revealed a fluorescent line of tetracycline if an individual had eaten baits. Baits were dropped from fixed-wing aircraft flying about 100 m above ground at approximately 130 km/h. Flight lines followed the edges of woodlots midway between parallel roads. Baits were dropped at one/sec, resulting in one bait/36 m on the ground, or 17 to 25 baits per km2. Crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos) removed many baits, but did not appear to lower the percent of the fox population which took bait. Dropping baits only into corn and woodland to conceal baits, to reduce depredation by crows, reduced acceptance by foxes. Acceptance by foxes ranged between 37 and 68%. Meat added as an attractant did not raise acceptance. Presence, absence, color and perforations of plastic bags did not alter bait acceptance. Dispersal by juvenile foxes probably lowered the estimates of bait acceptance. It took 7 to 17 days for 80% (n = 330) of foxes to eat their first bait. The rapidity with which foxes picked up their first bait appeared more affected by unknown characteristics of years or study areas than by experimental variables. Skunks (Mephitis mephitis) and raccoons (Procyon lotor) also ate these baits, but acceptance was lower. Small mammals contacted baits, but rarely contacted the vaccine, which had the potential for vaccine-induced rabies in some species. Aerial distribution of baits was more cost-effective than ground distribution as practiced in Europe. This system has potential for field control of rabies, although higher acceptance will be desirable

  4. Susceptibility of carnivore hosts to strains of canine distemper virus from distinct genetic lineages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikolin, Veljko M; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Michler, Frank-Uwe F; Wolf, Peter; East, Marion L

    2012-04-23

    Using the complete haemagglutinin (HA) gene and partial phosphoprotein (P) gene we investigated the genotype of canine distemper virus (CDV) strains recovered from two wildlife species in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated significant differences between the strains from raccoons Procyon lotor (family Procyonidae) obtained in 2007 and strains from red foxes Vulpes vulpes (family Canidae) obtained in 2008. The raccoon strains belonged to the CDV European wildlife lineage whereas the red fox strains belonged to the CDV Europe lineage. We combined our genetic sequence data with published data from 138 CDV stains worldwide to investigate the proposed importance of amino acid substitutions in the SLAM binding region of the CDV HA protein at position 530 (G/E to R/D/N) and 549 (Y to H) to the spread of domestic dog-adapted CDV strains to other carnivores. We found no evidence that amino acid 530 was strongly affected by host species. Rather, site 530 was conserved within CDV lineages, regardless of host species. Contrary to expectation, strains from non-dog hosts did not exhibit a bias towards the predicted substitution Y549H. Wild canid hosts were more frequently infected by strains with 549Y, a pattern similar to domestic dogs. Non-canid strains showed no significant bias towards either H or Y at site 549, although there was a trend towards 549H. Significant differences between the prevalence of 549Y and 549H in wild canid strains and non-canid strains suggests a degree of virus adaptation to these categories of host. PMID:22024346

  5. Mark-recapture and mark-resight methods for estimating abundance with remote cameras: a carnivore case study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert S Alonso

    Full Text Available Abundance estimation of carnivore populations is difficult and has prompted the use of non-invasive detection methods, such as remotely-triggered cameras, to collect data. To analyze photo data, studies focusing on carnivores with unique pelage patterns have utilized a mark-recapture framework and studies of carnivores without unique pelage patterns have used a mark-resight framework. We compared mark-resight and mark-recapture estimation methods to estimate bobcat (Lynx rufus population sizes, which motivated the development of a new "hybrid" mark-resight model as an alternative to traditional methods. We deployed a sampling grid of 30 cameras throughout the urban southern California study area. Additionally, we physically captured and marked a subset of the bobcat population with GPS telemetry collars. Since we could identify individual bobcats with photos of unique pelage patterns and a subset of the population was physically marked, we were able to use traditional mark-recapture and mark-resight methods, as well as the new "hybrid" mark-resight model we developed to estimate bobcat abundance. We recorded 109 bobcat photos during 4,669 camera nights and physically marked 27 bobcats with GPS telemetry collars. Abundance estimates produced by the traditional mark-recapture, traditional mark-resight, and "hybrid" mark-resight methods were similar, however precision differed depending on the models used. Traditional mark-recapture and mark-resight estimates were relatively imprecise with percent confidence interval lengths exceeding 100% of point estimates. Hybrid mark-resight models produced better precision with percent confidence intervals not exceeding 57%. The increased precision of the hybrid mark-resight method stems from utilizing the complete encounter histories of physically marked individuals (including those never detected by a camera trap and the encounter histories of naturally marked individuals detected at camera traps. This new

  6. Direct comparisons of 2D and 3D dental microwear proxies in extant herbivorous and carnivorous mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeSantis, Larisa R G; Scott, Jessica R; Schubert, Blaine W; Donohue, Shelly L; McCray, Brian M; Van Stolk, Courtney A; Winburn, Amanda A; Greshko, Michael A; O'Hara, Mackie C

    2013-01-01

    The analysis of dental microwear is commonly used by paleontologists and anthropologists to clarify the diets of extinct species, including herbivorous and carnivorous mammals. Currently, there are numerous methods employed to quantify dental microwear, varying in the types of microscopes used, magnifications, and the characterization of wear in both two dimensions and three dimensions. Results from dental microwear studies utilizing different methods are not directly comparable and human quantification of wear features (e.g., pits and scratches) introduces interobserver error, with higher error being produced by less experienced individuals. Dental microwear texture analysis (DMTA), which analyzes microwear features in three dimensions, alleviates some of the problems surrounding two-dimensional microwear methods by reducing observer bias. Here, we assess the accuracy and comparability within and between 2D and 3D dental microwear analyses in herbivorous and carnivorous mammals at the same magnification. Specifically, we compare observer-generated 2D microwear data from photosimulations of the identical scanned areas of DMTA in extant African bovids and carnivorans using a scanning white light confocal microscope at 100x magnification. Using this magnification, dental microwear features quantified in 2D were able to separate grazing and frugivorous bovids using scratch frequency; however, DMTA variables were better able to discriminate between disparate dietary niches in both carnivorous and herbivorous mammals. Further, results demonstrate significant interobserver differences in 2D microwear data, with the microwear index remaining the least variable between experienced observers, consistent with prior research. Overall, our results highlight the importance of reducing observer error and analyzing dental microwear in three dimensions in order to consistently interpret diets accurately. PMID:23936506

  7. Direct comparisons of 2D and 3D dental microwear proxies in extant herbivorous and carnivorous mammals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larisa R G DeSantis

    Full Text Available The analysis of dental microwear is commonly used by paleontologists and anthropologists to clarify the diets of extinct species, including herbivorous and carnivorous mammals. Currently, there are numerous methods employed to quantify dental microwear, varying in the types of microscopes used, magnifications, and the characterization of wear in both two dimensions and three dimensions. Results from dental microwear studies utilizing different methods are not directly comparable and human quantification of wear features (e.g., pits and scratches introduces interobserver error, with higher error being produced by less experienced individuals. Dental microwear texture analysis (DMTA, which analyzes microwear features in three dimensions, alleviates some of the problems surrounding two-dimensional microwear methods by reducing observer bias. Here, we assess the accuracy and comparability within and between 2D and 3D dental microwear analyses in herbivorous and carnivorous mammals at the same magnification. Specifically, we compare observer-generated 2D microwear data from photosimulations of the identical scanned areas of DMTA in extant African bovids and carnivorans using a scanning white light confocal microscope at 100x magnification. Using this magnification, dental microwear features quantified in 2D were able to separate grazing and frugivorous bovids using scratch frequency; however, DMTA variables were better able to discriminate between disparate dietary niches in both carnivorous and herbivorous mammals. Further, results demonstrate significant interobserver differences in 2D microwear data, with the microwear index remaining the least variable between experienced observers, consistent with prior research. Overall, our results highlight the importance of reducing observer error and analyzing dental microwear in three dimensions in order to consistently interpret diets accurately.

  8. Impact of botanical pesticides derived from Melia azedarach an Azadirachta indica plants on the emission of volatiles that attract parasitoids of the diamondback moth to cabbage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Charleston, D.S.; Gols, R.; Hordijk, K.A.; Kfir, R.; Vet, L.E.M.; Dicke, M.

    2006-01-01

    Herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods use chemical information from plants during foraging. Aqueous leaf extracts from the syringa tree Melia azedarach and commercial formulations from the neem tree Azadirachta indica, Neemix 4.5®, were investigated for their impact on the flight response of two pa

  9. The Bamboo-Eating Giant Panda Harbors a Carnivore-Like Gut Microbiota, with Excessive Seasonal Variations

    OpenAIRE

    Xue, Zhengsheng; Zhang, Wenping; Wang, Linghua; Hou, Rong; Zhang, Menghui; Fei, Lisong; Zhang, Xiaojun; Huang, He; Bridgewater, Laura C.; Jiang, Yi; Jiang, Chenglin; Zhao, Liping; Pang, Xiaoyan; Zhang, Zhihe

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT The giant panda evolved from omnivorous bears. It lives on a bamboo-dominated diet at present, but it still retains a typical carnivorous digestive system and is genetically deficient in cellulose-digesting enzymes. To find out whether this endangered mammalian species, like other herbivores, has successfully developed a gut microbiota adapted to its fiber-rich diet, we conducted a 16S rRNA gene-based large-scale structural profiling of the giant panda fecal microbiota. Forty-five ca...

  10. Snapshot of Viral Infections in Wild Carnivores Reveals Ubiquity of Parvovirus and Susceptibility of Egyptian Mongoose to Feline Panleukopenia Virus

    OpenAIRE

    Duarte, Margarida D.; Ana Margarida Henriques; Sílvia Carla Barros; Teresa Fagulha; Paula Mendonça; Paulo Carvalho; Madalena Monteiro; Miguel Fevereiro; Basto, Mafalda P.; Luís Miguel Rosalino; Tânia Barros; Victor Bandeira; Carlos Fonseca; Cunha, Mónica V.

    2013-01-01

    The exposure of wild carnivores to viral pathogens, with emphasis on parvovirus (CPV/FPLV), was assessed based on the molecular screening of tissue samples from 128 hunted or accidentally road-killed animals collected in Portugal from 2008 to 2011, including Egyptian mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon, n = 99), red fox (Vulpes vulpes, n = 19), stone marten (Martes foina, n = 3), common genet (Genetta genetta, n = 3) and Eurasian badger (Meles meles, n = 4). A high prevalence of parvovirus DNA (63%...

  11. Interspecific and geographic variation in the diets of sympatric carnivores: dingoes/wild dogs and red foxes in south-eastern Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi E Davis

    Full Text Available Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor, brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp., common wombat (Vombatus ursinus, sambar deer (Rusa unicolor, cattle (Bos taurus and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus. The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries and house mouse (Mus musculus. Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food

  12. Interspecific and geographic variation in the diets of sympatric carnivores: dingoes/wild dogs and red foxes in south-eastern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Naomi E; Forsyth, David M; Triggs, Barbara; Pascoe, Charlie; Benshemesh, Joe; Robley, Alan; Lawrence, Jenny; Ritchie, Euan G; Nimmo, Dale G; Lumsden, Lindy F

    2015-01-01

    Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp.), common wombat (Vombatus ursinus), sambar deer (Rusa unicolor), cattle (Bos taurus) and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries) and house mouse (Mus musculus). Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food resources they

  13. Plants on the move: towards common mechanisms governing mechanically-induced plant movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scorza, Livia Camilla Trevisan; Dornelas, Marcelo Carnier

    2011-12-01

    One may think that plants seem relatively immobile. Nevertheless, plants not only produce movement but these movements can be quite rapid such as the closing traps of carnivorous plants, the folding up of leaflets in some Leguminosae species and the movement of floral organs in order to increase cross pollination. We focus this review on thigmotropic and thigmonastic movements, both in vegetative and reproductive parts of higher plants. Ultrastructural studies revealed that most thigmotropic and thigmonastic movements are caused by differentially changing cell turgor within a given tissue. Auxin has emerged as a key molecule that modulates proton extrusion and thus causing changes in cell turgor by enhancing the activity of H(+)ATPase in cell membranes. Finding conserved molecules and/or operational molecular modules among diverse types of movements would help us to find universal mechanisms controlling movements in plants and thus improve our understanding about the evolution of such phenomena. PMID:22231201

  14. Landscape-scale accessibility of livestock to tigers: implications of spatial grain for modeling predation risk to mitigate human-carnivore conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jennifer R B; Jhala, Yadvendradev V; Jena, Jyotirmay; Schmitz, Oswald J

    2015-03-01

    Innovative conservation tools are greatly needed to reduce livelihood losses and wildlife declines resulting from human-carnivore conflict. Spatial risk modeling is an emerging method for assessing the spatial patterns of predator-prey interactions, with applications for mitigating carnivore attacks on livestock. Large carnivores that ambush prey attack and kill over small areas, requiring models at fine spatial grains to predict livestock depredation hot spots. To detect the best resolution for predicting where carnivores access livestock, we examined the spatial attributes associated with livestock killed by tigers in Kanha Tiger Reserve, India, using risk models generated at 20, 100, and 200-m spatial grains. We analyzed land-use, human presence, and vegetation structure variables at 138 kill sites and 439 random sites to identify key landscape attributes where livestock were vulnerable to tigers. Land-use and human presence variables contributed strongly to predation risk models, with most variables showing high relative importance (≥0.85) at all spatial grains. The risk of a tiger killing livestock increased near dense forests and near the boundary of the park core zone where human presence is restricted. Risk was nonlinearly related to human infrastructure and open vegetation, with the greatest risk occurring 1.2 km from roads, 1.1 km from villages, and 8.0 km from scrubland. Kill sites were characterized by denser, patchier, and more complex vegetation with lower visibility than random sites. Risk maps revealed high-risk hot spots inside of the core zone boundary and in several patches in the human-dominated buffer zone. Validation against known kills revealed predictive accuracy for only the 20 m model, the resolution best representing the kill stage of hunting for large carnivores that ambush prey, like the tiger. Results demonstrate that risk models developed at fine spatial grains can offer accurate guidance on landscape attributes livestock should

  15. Dark respiration of leaves and traps of terrestrial carnivorous plants: are there greater energetic costs in traps?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 5, č. 1 (2010), s. 121-124. ISSN 1895-104X Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Aerobic respiration * metabolic costs * trap specialization Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.685, year: 2010

  16. Photosynthetic CO2 affinity of the aquatic carnivorous plant Utricularia australis (Lentibulariaceae) and its investment in carnivory

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 24, č. 2 (2009), s. 327-333. ISSN 0912-3814 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : CO2 compensation point * investment in carnivory * apical shoot growth Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.485, year: 2009

  17. Foraging modality and plasticity in foraging traits determine the strength of competitive interactions among carnivorous plants, spiders and toads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Krupa, James J; Rohr, Jason R

    2016-07-01

    Foraging modalities (e.g. passive, sit-and-wait, active) and traits are plastic in some species, but the extent to which this plasticity affects interspecific competition remains unclear. Using a long-term laboratory mesocosm experiment, we quantified competition strength and the plasticity of foraging traits in a guild of generalist predators of arthropods with a range of foraging modalities. Each mesocosm contained eight passively foraging pink sundews, and we employed an experimental design where treatments were the presence or absence of a sit-and-wait foraging spider and actively foraging toad crossed with five levels of prey abundance. We hypothesized that actively foraging toads would outcompete the other species at low prey abundance, but that spiders and sundews would exhibit plasticity in foraging traits to compensate for strong competition when prey were limited. Results generally supported our hypotheses. Toads had a greater effect on sundews at low prey abundances, and toad presence caused spiders to locate webs higher above the ground. Additionally, the closer large spider webs were to the ground, the greater the trichome densities produced by sundews. Also, spider webs were larger with than without toads and as sundew numbers increased, and these effects were more prominent as resources became limited. Finally, spiders negatively affected toad growth only at low prey abundance. These findings highlight the long-term importance of foraging modality and plasticity of foraging traits in determining the strength of competition within and across taxonomic kingdoms. Future research should assess whether plasticity in foraging traits helps to maintain coexistence within this guild and whether foraging modality can be used as a trait to reliably predict the strength of competitive interactions. PMID:27061175

  18. Photosynthetic CO2 affinity of aquatic carnivorous plants growing under nearly-natural conditions and in vitro

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír; Pásek, K.

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 38, č. 4 (2009), s. 107-113. ISSN 0190-9215 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : CO2 compensation points * Aldrovanda vesiculosa * Utricularia spp. Subject RIV: EF - Botanics

  19. Tracking cats: problems with placing feline carnivores on δO, δD isoscapes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie J Pietsch

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Several felids are endangered and threatened by the illegal wildlife trade. Establishing geographic origin of tissues of endangered species is thus crucial for wildlife crime investigations and effective conservation strategies. As shown in other species, stable isotope analysis of hydrogen and oxygen in hair (δD(h, δ(18O(h can be used as a tool for provenance determination. However, reliably predicting the spatial distribution of δD(h and δ(18O(h requires confirmation from animal tissues of known origin and a detailed understanding of the isotopic routing of dietary nutrients into felid hair. METHODOLOGY/FINDINGS: We used coupled δD(h and δ(18O(h measurements from the North American bobcat (Lynx rufus and puma (Puma concolor with precipitation-based assignment isoscapes to test the feasibility of isotopic geo-location of felidae. Hairs of felid and rabbit museum specimens from 75 sites across the United States and Canada were analyzed. Bobcat and puma lacked a significant correlation between H/O isotopes in hair and local waters, and also exhibited an isotopic decoupling of δ(18O(h and δD(h. Conversely, strong δD and δ(18O coupling was found for key prey, eastern cottontail rabbit (Sylvilagus floridanus; hair and white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus; collagen, bone phosphate. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Puma and bobcat hairs do not adhere to expected pattern of H and O isotopic variation predicted by precipitation isoscapes for North America. Thus, using bulk hair, felids cannot be placed on δ(18O and δD isoscapes for use in forensic investigations. The effective application of isotopes to trace the provenance of feline carnivores is likely compromised by major controls of their diet, physiology and metabolism on hair δ(18O and δD related to body water budgets. Controlled feeding experiments, combined with single amino acid isotope analysis of diets and hair, are needed to reveal mechanisms and physiological traits

  20. Tracking Cats: Problems with Placing Feline Carnivores on δ18O, δD Isoscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietsch, Stephanie J.; Hobson, Keith A.; Wassenaar, Leonard I.; Tütken, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Background Several felids are endangered and threatened by the illegal wildlife trade. Establishing geographic origin of tissues of endangered species is thus crucial for wildlife crime investigations and effective conservation strategies. As shown in other species, stable isotope analysis of hydrogen and oxygen in hair (δDh, δ18Oh) can be used as a tool for provenance determination. However, reliably predicting the spatial distribution of δDh and δ18Oh requires confirmation from animal tissues of known origin and a detailed understanding of the isotopic routing of dietary nutrients into felid hair. Methodology/Findings We used coupled δDh and δ18Oh measurements from the North American bobcat (Lynx rufus) and puma (Puma concolor) with precipitation-based assignment isoscapes to test the feasibility of isotopic geo-location of felidae. Hairs of felid and rabbit museum specimens from 75 sites across the United States and Canada were analyzed. Bobcat and puma lacked a significant correlation between H/O isotopes in hair and local waters, and also exhibited an isotopic decoupling of δ18Oh and δDh. Conversely, strong δD and δ18O coupling was found for key prey, eastern cottontail rabbit (Sylvilagus floridanus; hair) and white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus; collagen, bone phosphate). Conclusions/Significance Puma and bobcat hairs do not adhere to expected pattern of H and O isotopic variation predicted by precipitation isoscapes for North America. Thus, using bulk hair, felids cannot be placed on δ18O and δD isoscapes for use in forensic investigations. The effective application of isotopes to trace the provenance of feline carnivores is likely compromised by major controls of their diet, physiology and metabolism on hair δ18O and δD related to body water budgets. Controlled feeding experiments, combined with single amino acid isotope analysis of diets and hair, are needed to reveal mechanisms and physiological traits explaining why felid hair does

  1. Digestive enzymes along digestive tract of a carnivorous fish Glyptosternum maculatum (Sisoridae, Siluriformes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, D M; Xie, C X; Zhang, H J; Liu, H P

    2011-02-01

    This study attempted to determine the presence, distribution and levels of digestive proteases, pepsin, amylase and lipase in the homogenates of digestive tract of a freshwater, cold-adapted, carnivorous teleost of Tibet, Glyptosternum maculatum (n= 10, mean weight: 129.6±28.9 g, mean length: 195.1±16.6 mm, approximately 6 years old), at different temperatures and pH levels. The descending order of protease activity was as follows: stomach (pepsin, 16.16±0.96 U/mg protein), anterior intestine (3.18±0.25 U/mg protein), posterior intestine (1.76±0.21 U/mg protein) and middle intestine (1.52±0.23 U/mg protein). Amylase activity levels in descending order were as follows: anterior intestine (0.0062±0.0007 U/mg protein), stomach (0.0032±0.0009 U/mg protein), middle intestine (0.0023±0.0005 U/mg protein) and posterior intestine (0.0023±0.0004 U/mg protein). The highest lipase activity was found in the anterior intestine (0.83±0.25 U/mg protein), followed by posterior intestine (0.51±0.19 U/mg protein), middle intestine (0.48±0.09 U/mg protein) and stomach (0.39±0.10 U/mg protein). The optimal temperature and pH level for protease were 50°C and 9.0-10.0, respectively, along the intestine. The pepsin optima in the stomach were 30°C and 2.0 respectively. The optimal temperature for amylase was found to be 30°C along the digestive tract and the optimal pH was 7.0 in the intestine and 6.0 in the stomach. The optimal temperature and pH levels of lipase were 30°C, pH 6.0 for the stomach and 40-50°C, pH 8.0 for the intestine, respectively. Hepato-somatic index was 1.35±0.2% and relative intestine length was 0.90±0.19. The weight ratio of the stomach and intestine to body weight was 1.63±0.43% and 1.57±0.24% respectively. PMID:20487102

  2. Ribosomal and mitochondrial DNA analysis of Trichuridae nematodes of carnivores and small mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guardone, Lisa; Deplazes, Peter; Macchioni, Fabio; Magi, Marta; Mathis, Alexander

    2013-10-18

    Several species of Trichuridae nematodes can infect dogs, cats and wild mammals. The diagnosis of these infections relies on the microscopic identification of eggs which are characterized by a similar "lemon" shape and polar plugs in all Trichuridae. Thus, morphological diagnosis to species level is challenging. The use of biomolecular diagnostic methods is desirable but very little genetic data are known from Trichuridae of carnivores and small mammals. The aim of this work was to genetically characterize several species of Trichuridae that can affect dogs, cats and wild mammals, as a basis to develop molecular diagnostic tests. Specimens (adult worms or eggs) of Eucoleus aerophilus (syn. Capillaria aerophila), Eucoleus boehmi (syn. Capillaria boehmi), Pearsonema plica (syn. Capillaria plica), Aonchotheca putorii (syn. Capillaria putorii), Calodium hepaticum (syn. Capillaria hepatica), Calodium splenaecum (syn. Capillaria splenaeca) and Trichuris vulpis were obtained from carcasses of red foxes, feces of dogs, the liver of a vole and from the spleen of Crocidura sp. Parts of the small subunit rRNA (18S rRNA) gene and of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (cox 1 mtDNA) gene were amplified from the above mentioned nematodes, yielding the first 18S rRNA gene sequences of all the capillariid nematodes and the first cox 1 mtDNA sequences of E. boehmi, P. plica, C. hepaticum, A. putorii and T. vulpis. The 18S rRNA gene is highly conserved among the different species and not suitable as a target for specific diagnostic oligonucleotides. However, these sequences contribute to a better understanding of the complex taxonomic relations among Trichuridae. Indeed, a dendrogram based on the 18S rRNA gene locus supports the latest taxonomic revision. Interspecies divergence was much higher at the cox 1 mtDNA gene locus, rendering it suitable for DNA barcoding and particularly valuable in resolving closely related species. Furthermore, the mitochondrial genetic

  3. A survey for Echinococcus spp. of carnivores in six wildlife conservation areas in Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kagendo, D; Magambo, J; Agola, E L; Njenga, S M; Zeyhle, E; Mulinge, E; Gitonga, P; Mbae, C; Muchiri, E; Wassermann, M; Kern, P; Romig, T

    2014-08-01

    To investigate the presence of Echinococcus spp. in wild mammals of Kenya, 832 faecal samples from wild carnivores (lions, leopards, spotted hyenas, wild dogs and silver-backed jackals) were collected in six different conservation areas of Kenya (Meru, Nairobi, Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks, Samburu and Maasai Mara National Reserves). Taeniid eggs were found in 120 samples (14.4%). In total, 1160 eggs were isolated and further analysed using RFLP-PCR of the nad1 gene and sequencing. 38 of these samples contained eggs of Echinococcus spp., which were identified as either Echinococcus felidis (n=27) or Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (n=12); one sample contained eggs from both taxa. E. felidis was found in faeces from lions (n=20) and hyenas (n=5) while E. granulosus in faeces from lions (n=8), leopards (n=1) and hyenas (n=3). The host species for two samples containing E. felidis could not be identified with certainty. As the majority of isolated eggs could not be analysed with the methods used (no amplification), we do not attempt to give estimates of faecal prevalences. Both taxa of Echinococcus were found in all conservation areas except Meru (only E. felidis) and Tsavo West (only E. granulosus). Host species identification for environmental faecal samples, based on field signs, was found to be unreliable. All samples with taeniid eggs were subjected to a confirmatory host species RLFP-PCR of the cytochrome B gene. 60% had been correctly identified in the field. Frequently, hyena faeces were mistaken for lion and vice versa, and none of the samples from jackals and wild dogs could be confirmed in the tested sub-sample. This is the first molecular study on the distribution of Echinococcus spp. in Kenyan wildlife. The presence of E. felidis is confirmed for lions and newly reported for spotted hyenas. Lions and hyenas are newly recognized hosts for E. granulosus s.s., while the role of leopards remains uncertain. These data provide the basis for

  4. Mitochondrial genome sequences illuminate maternal lineages of conservation concern in a rare carnivore

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pilgrim Kristine

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Science-based wildlife management relies on genetic information to infer population connectivity and identify conservation units. The most commonly used genetic marker for characterizing animal biodiversity and identifying maternal lineages is the mitochondrial genome. Mitochondrial genotyping figures prominently in conservation and management plans, with much of the attention focused on the non-coding displacement ("D" loop. We used massively parallel multiplexed sequencing to sequence complete mitochondrial genomes from 40 fishers, a threatened carnivore that possesses low mitogenomic diversity. This allowed us to test a key assumption of conservation genetics, specifically, that the D-loop accurately reflects genealogical relationships and variation of the larger mitochondrial genome. Results Overall mitogenomic divergence in fishers is exceedingly low, with 66 segregating sites and an average pairwise distance between genomes of 0.00088 across their aligned length (16,290 bp. Estimates of variation and genealogical relationships from the displacement (D loop region (299 bp are contradicted by the complete mitochondrial genome, as well as the protein coding fraction of the mitochondrial genome. The sources of this contradiction trace primarily to the near-absence of mutations marking the D-loop region of one of the most divergent lineages, and secondarily to independent (recurrent mutations at two nucleotide position in the D-loop amplicon. Conclusions Our study has two important implications. First, inferred genealogical reconstructions based on the fisher D-loop region contradict inferences based on the entire mitogenome to the point that the populations of greatest conservation concern cannot be accurately resolved. Whole-genome analysis identifies Californian haplotypes from the northern-most populations as highly distinctive, with a significant excess of amino acid changes that may be indicative of molecular

  5. Molecular cloning and ontogenic mRNA expression of fatty acid desaturase in the carnivorous striped snakehead fish (Channa striata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaya-Ram, Annette; Ishak, Sairatul Dahlianis; Enyu, Yee-Ling; Kuah, Meng-Kiat; Wong, Kah-Loon; Shu-Chien, Alexander Chong

    2011-04-01

    There is very little information on the capacity of freshwater carnivorous fish to biosynthesize highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA). The striped snakehead fish (Channa striata) is a carnivorous species cultured inland of several Southeast Asian countries due to its pharmaceutical properties in wound healing enhancement. We described here the full-length cDNA cloning of a striped snakehead fatty acid desaturase (fads), which is responsible for desaturation of unsaturated fatty acids in the HUFA biosynthesis. Bioinformatics analysis reveals a protein coding region with length of 445 amino acids containing all characteristic features of desaturase enzyme, including a cytochrome b5-domain with the heme-binding motif, two transmembrane domains and three histidine-rich regions. The striped snakehead fads amino acid sequence shares high similarity with known fads of other teleosts. The mRNA expression of striped snakehead fads also showed an ontogenic-related increase in expression in 0-20 days after hatch larva. Using ISH, we localized the presence of fads in larva brain, liver and intestinal tissues. PMID:21130179

  6. Peculiarities of One-Carbon Metabolism in the Strict Carnivorous Cat and the Role in Feline Hepatic Lipidosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marica Bakovic

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Research in various species has indicated that diets deficient in labile methyl groups (methionine, choline, betaine, folate produce fatty liver and links to steatosis and metabolic syndrome, but also provides evidence of the importance of labile methyl group balance to maintain normal liver function. Cats, being obligate carnivores, rely on nutrients in animal tissues and have, due to evolutionary pressure, developed several physiological and metabolic adaptations, including a number of peculiarities in protein and fat metabolism. This has led to specific and unique nutritional requirements. Adult cats require more dietary protein than omnivorous species, maintain a consistently high rate of protein oxidation and gluconeogenesis and are unable to adapt to reduced protein intake. Furthermore, cats have a higher requirement for essential amino acids and essential fatty acids. Hastened use coupled with an inability to conserve certain amino acids, including methionine, cysteine, taurine and arginine, necessitates a higher dietary intake for cats compared to most other species. Cats also seemingly require higher amounts of several B-vitamins compared to other species and are predisposed to depletion during prolonged inappetance. This carnivorous uniqueness makes cats more susceptible to hepatic lipidosis.

  7. The effects of local and landscape-scale habitat characteristics and prey availability on corridor use by carnivores: A comparison of two contrasting farmlands

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Červinka, J.; Šálek, Martin; Padyšáková, E.; Šmilauer, P.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 21, č. 2 (2013), s. 105-113. ISSN 1617-1381 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Agricultural landscape * Carnivores * Corridors * Czech Republic * Habitat characteristics * Prey availability Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 1.833, year: 2013

  8. The glucose and insulin response to isoenergetic reduction of dietary energy sources in a true carnivore: the domestic cat ( Felis catus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verbrugghe, Adronie; Hesta, Myriam; Van Weyenberg, Stephanie; Papadopoulos, Georgios A; Gommeren, Kris; Daminet, Sylvie; Bosmans, Tim; Polis, Ingeborgh; Buyse, Johan; Janssens, Geert P J

    2010-07-01

    The present study assessed the effect of separate reduction of each energy-delivering nutrient - protein, fat and carbohydrate - on glucose tolerance and insulin response in a strict carnivore: the domestic cat (Felis catus). Three isoenergetic, home-made diets with the following energetic distribution, low protein (LP): protein 28 % of metabolisable energy; fat 43 %; nitrogen-free extract 29 %; low fat: 47, 27 and 25 %; low carbohydrate (LC): 45, 48 and 7 %, were tested in a 3 x 3 Latin square design. Nine healthy normal-weight cats were randomly assigned to each of the diets in a random order at intervals of 3 weeks. At the end of each testing period, intravenous glucose tolerance tests were performed. Plasma glucose concentrations and area under the glucose curve showed no differences. Area under the insulin curve was lower when cats were fed the LP diet, and the second insulin peak tended to be delayed when the LC diet was fed. In contrast to other studies, in which energy sources were elevated instead of being reduced, the present trial contradicts the often suggested negative impact of carbohydrates on insulin sensitivity in carnivores, and shows that reducing the dietary carbohydrate content below common amounts for commercial foods evokes an insulin-resistant state, which can be explained by the cats' strict carnivorous nature. It even points to a negative effect of protein on insulin sensitivity, a finding that corresponds with the highly gluconeogenic nature of amino acids in strict carnivores. PMID:20193098

  9. Risk assessment of metals and organic pollutants for herbivorous and carnivorous small mammal food chains in a polluted floodplain (Biesbosch, The Netherlands)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hamers, T.H.M.; Berg, van den J.H.J.; Gestel, van C.A.M.; Schooten, van F.J.; Murk, A.J.

    2006-01-01

    A risk assessment was made for a carnivorous and a herbivorous food chain in a heavily polluted natural estuary (Biesbosch), by determining the most critical pollutants and the food chain most at risk. Exposure of food chains to metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and polychlorinated bi

  10. Correspondence regarding 'Clouded leopards, the secretive top-carnivore of South-East Asian rainforests: their distribution, status and conservation needs in Sabah, Malaysia'

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meijaard Erik

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Correspondence regarding Wilting A, Fischer F, Bakar SA, Linsenmair KE: Clouded leopards, the secretive top-carnivore of South-East Asian rainforests: their distribution, status and conservation needs in Sabah, Malaysia. BMC Ecol 2006, 6:16. Wilting et al. have provided their response to Gordon et al., directly following the correspondence.

  11. Oligotyping reveals differences between gut microbiomes of free-ranging sympatric Namibian carnivores (Acinonyx jubatus, Canis mesomelas) on a bacterial species-like level

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Menke, S.; Wasimuddin, Wasimuddin; Meier, M.; Melzheimer, J.; Mfune, J. K. E.; Heinrich, S.; Thalwitzer, S.; Wachter, B.; Sommer, S.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 5, č. 526 (2014), s. 526. ISSN 1664-302X R&D Projects: GA MŠk EE2.3.20.0303 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : gut microbiome * bacteria * oligotyping * carnivores * cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) * black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas) * Namibia Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 3.989, year: 2014

  12. Rates and modes of body size evolution in early carnivores and herbivores: a case study from Captorhinidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brocklehurst, Neil

    2016-01-01

    Body size is an extremely important characteristic, impacting on a variety of ecological and life-history traits. It is therefore important to understand the factors which may affect its evolution, and diet has attracted much interest in this context. A recent study which examined the evolution of the earliest terrestrial herbivores in the Late Carboniferous and Early Permian concluded that in the four herbivorous clades examined there was a trend towards increased body size, and that this increase was more substantial than that observed in closely related carnivorous clades. However, this hypothesis was not based on quantitative examination, and phylogenetic comparative methods provide a more robust means of testing such hypotheses. Here, the evolution of body size within different dietary regimes is examined in Captorhinidae, the most diverse and longest lived of these earliest high fibre herbivores. Evolutionary models were fit to their phylogeny to test for variation in rate and mode of evolution between the carnivorous and herbivorous members of this clade, and an analysis of rate variation throughout the tree was carried out. Estimates of ancestral body sizes were calculated in order to compare the rates and direction of evolution of lineages with different dietary regimes. Support for the idea that the high fibre herbivores within captorhinids are being drawn to a higher adaptive peak in body size than the carnivorous members of this clade is weak. A shift in rates of body size evolution is identified, but this does not coincide with the evolution of high-fibre herbivory, instead occurring earlier in time and at a more basal node. Herbivorous lineages which show an increase in size are not found to evolve at a faster rate than those which show a decrease; in fact, it is those which experience a size decrease which evolve at higher rates. It is possible the shift in rates of evolution is related to the improved food processing ability of the more derived

  13. Molecular detection of vector-borne pathogens in wild and domestic carnivores and their ticks at the human-wildlife interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millán, Javier; Proboste, Tatiana; Fernández de Mera, Isabel G; Chirife, Andrea D; de la Fuente, José; Altet, Laura

    2016-03-01

    Urbanization of natural areas is considered one of the causes of the current apparent emergence of infectious diseases. Carnivores are among the species that adapt well to urban and periurban environments, facilitating cross-species disease transmission with domestic dogs and cats, and potentially with their owners. The prevalence of vector-borne pathogens (VBP) of zoonotic and veterinary interest was studied in sympatric wild and domestic carnivores into Barcelona Metropolitan Area (NE Spain). Blood or spleen samples from 130 animals, including 34 common genets (Genetta genetta), 12 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 10 stone martens (Martes foina), three Eurasian badgers (Meles meles), 34 free-roaming domestic cats and 37 dogs with outdoor access, were collected either in protected or adjacent residential areas. A total of 309 ticks (chiefly Rhipicephalus turanicus) were collected on these animals. The samples were analyzed with a battery of PCR assays targeting the DNA of Rickettsia spp., Anaplasmataceae, Coxiella burnetii, Bartonella spp., and Piroplasmida, and the amplicons were sequenced. The fox showed the highest prevalence (58%) and diversity of VBP (four pathogens), whereas none of the dogs were infected. Bartonella spp. (including B. clarridgeiae, B. henselae, and B. rochalimae) was the most prevalent pathogen. Infection of wild carnivores with Ehrlichia canis, C. burnetii, Theileria annae and Babesia vogeli was also confirmed, with some cases of coinfection observed. The presence of DNA of T. annae and B. vogeli was also confirmed in tick pools from four species of wild carnivores, supporting their role in piroplasmid life-cycle. By the sequencing of several target genes, DNA of Rickettsia massiliae was confirmed in 17 pools of Rh. turanicus, Rh. sanguineous, and Rh. pusillus from five different species, and Rickettsia conorii in one pool of Rh. sanguineous from a dog. None of the hosts from which these ticks were collected was infected by Rickettsia. Although

  14. Evolutionary histories of transposable elements in the genome of the largest living marsupial carnivore, the Tasmanian devil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallus, Susanne; Hallström, Björn M; Kumar, Vikas; Dodt, William G; Janke, Axel; Schumann, Gerald G; Nilsson, Maria A

    2015-05-01

    The largest living carnivorous marsupial, the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), is the sole survivor of a lineage originating about 12 Ma. We set out to investigate the spectrum of transposable elements found in the Tasmanian devil genome, the first high-coverage genome of an Australian marsupial. Marsupial genomes have been shown to have the highest amount of transposable elements among vertebrates. We analyzed the horizontally transmitted DNA transposons OC1 and hAT-1_MEu in the Tasmanian devil genome. OC1 is present in all carnivorous marsupials, while having a very limited distribution among the remaining Australian marsupial orders. In contrast, hAT-1_MEu is present in all Australian marsupial orders, and has so far only been identified in a few placental mammals. We screened 158 introns for phylogenetically informative retrotransposons in the order Dasyuromorphia, and found that the youngest SINE (Short INterspersed Element), WSINE1, is no longer active in the subfamily Dasyuridae. The lack of detectable WSINE1 activity in this group may be due to a retrotransposon inactivation event approximately 30 Ma. We found that the Tasmanian devil genome contains a relatively low number of continuous full-length LINE-1 (Long INterspersed Element 1, L1) retrotransposons compared with the opossum genome. Furthermore, all L1 elements in the Tasmanian devil appeared to be nonfunctional. Hidden Markov Model approaches suggested that other potential sources of functional reverse transcriptase are absent from the genome. We discuss the issues associated with assembling long, highly similar L1 copies from short read Illumina data and describe how assembly artifacts can potentially lead to erroneous conclusions. PMID:25633377

  15. Coexistence of sympatric carnivores in relatively homogeneous Mediterranean landscapes: functional importance of habitat segregation at the fine-scale level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, Carolina; Palomares, Francisco

    2015-09-01

    One of the main objectives of community ecology is to understand the conditions allowing species to coexist. However, few studies have investigated the role of fine-scale habitat use segregation in the functioning of guild communities in relatively homogeneous landscapes where opportunities for coexistence are likely to be the most restrictive. We investigate how the process of habitat use differentiation at the home range level according to the degree of specialism/generalism of species can lead to coexistence between guild species. We examine differences in fine-scale habitat use and niche separation as potential mechanisms explaining the coexistence of five sympatric carnivore species that differ in life history traits (Iberian lynx, Eurasian badger, Egyptian mongoose, common genet and red fox) by collecting data from systematic track censuses in a relatively homogeneous Mediterranean landscape. We found that a higher degree of specialism determines the segregation of species among the fine-scale ecological niche dimensions defined using quantitative elements associated with vegetation, landscape, prey availability and human disturbance. The species with the lowest total performance over the set of variables did not exhibit segregation in the use of habitat at this level. Our study indicates that in relatively homogeneous landscapes, there exist subtle patterns of habitat partitioning over small-scale gradients of habitat determinants as a function of the degree of specialism of carnivore species within a guild. Our results also suggest that coexistence between generalist species may be permitted by fine-scale spatial-temporal segregation of activity patterns or trophic resource consumption, but not fine-scale habitat use differentiation. PMID:25933639

  16. Rehabilitation of Abandoned Shrimp Ponds through Mangrove Planting at Nakhon Si Thammarat, Southern Thailand: Investigation of a Food Chain System at a Newly Developed Mangrove Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shigeru KATO

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available The complete food chain system of mangrove plantations on shrimp ponds sites were studied using the stable nitrogen (15N and carbon isotopes (13C to complete food chain (web system studies of mangrove plantations. The analyzed data clearly indicates that heavy nitrogen (15N was gradually accumulated during each stage of the food chain system and finally in large fishes. On the other hand, heavy carbon (13C increased only slightly during each stage of the food chain system. The δ15N values for carnivores were much higher than those of herbivores and omnivores. Carnivores consume nitrogen accumulated fishes and animals as their feed sources. Finally these carnivores gradually accumulate nitrogen in protein forms in their bodies from their metabolic activities. Herbivores eat only plants, whereas omnivores consume both plants and animals (including fishes. Usually, the δ15N values of herbivores and omnivores are low. This promising data truly represents the food chain system occurring in a natural marine ecosystem. The above analyzed data suggests that carnivorous fishes are at least 4 to 5 steps from the mangrove leaves. Mangrove forests can contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases acting as a carbon sink and a rich biodiversity ecosystem.

  17. Ants swimming in pitcher plants: kinematics of aquatic and terrestrial locomotion in Camponotus schmitzi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohn, Holger Florian; Thornham, Daniel George; Federle, Walter

    2012-06-01

    Camponotus schmitzi ants live in symbiosis with the Bornean pitcher plant Nepenthes bicalcarata. Unique among ants, the workers regularly dive and swim in the pitcher's digestive fluid to forage for food. High-speed motion analysis revealed that C. schmitzi ants swim at the surface with all legs submerged, with an alternating tripod pattern. Compared to running, swimming involves lower stepping frequencies and larger phase delays within the legs of each tripod. Swimming ants move front and middle legs faster and keep them more extended during the power stroke than during the return stroke. Thrust estimates calculated from three-dimensional leg kinematics using a blade-element approach confirmed that forward propulsion is mainly achieved by the front and middle legs. The hind legs move much less, suggesting that they mainly serve for steering. Experiments with tethered C. schmitzi ants showed that characteristic swimming movements can be triggered by submersion in water. This reaction was absent in another Camponotus species investigated. Our study demonstrates how insects can use the same locomotory system and similar gait patterns for moving on land and in water. We discuss insect adaptations for aquatic/amphibious lifestyles and the special adaptations of C. schmitzi to living on an insect-trapping pitcher plant. PMID:22526112

  18. Report of the Plant Products in Aquafeed Strategic Planning Workshop: An integrated, interdisciplinary research roadmap for increasing utilization of plant feedstuffs in diets for carnivorous fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Approximately 30 researchers and representatives from federal technical agencies met at the USDA National Center for Cool and Coldwater Aquaculture in Leetown, West Virginia. The goal was to develop an integrated (cross-disciplinary), strategic approach to improve understanding of the factors limit...

  19. Innate positive chemotaxis to pollen from crops and banker plants in predaceous biological control agents: towards new field lures?

    OpenAIRE

    Shu Li; Xiaoling Tan; Nicolas Desneux; Giovanni Benelli; Jing Zhao; Xinhai Li; Fan Zhang; Xiwu Gao; Su Wang

    2015-01-01

    Predator-prey interactions form the core of biological control of arthropod pests. Which tools can be used to monitor and collect carnivorous arthropods in natural habitats and targeted crops? Eco-friendly and effective field lures are urgently needed. In this research, we carried out olfactometer experiments assess innate positive chemotaxis to pollen of seven crop and banker plant by two important predatory biological control agents: the coccinellid Propylea japonica (Thunberg) and the anth...

  20. Anthropogenic extinction of top carnivores and interspecific animal behaviour: implications of the rapid decoupling of a web involving wolves, bears, moose and ravens.

    OpenAIRE

    Berger, J

    1999-01-01

    The recent extinction of grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) and wolves (Canis lupus) by humans from 95-99% of the contiguous USA and Mexico in less than 100 years has resulted in dramatically altered and expanded prey communities. Such rampant ecological change and putative ecological instability has not occurred in North American northern boreal zones. This geographical variation in the loss of large carnivores as a consequence of anthropogenic disturbance offers opportunities for examining the po...