Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Many cave-dwelling animal species display similar morphologies (troglomorphism that have evolved convergent within and among lineages under the similar selective pressures imposed by cave habitats. Here we study such ecomorphological evolution in cave-dwelling Sclerobuninae harvestmen (Opiliones from the western United States, providing general insights into morphological homoplasy, rates of morphological change, and the temporal context of cave evolution. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We gathered DNA sequence data from three independent gene regions, and combined these data with Bayesian hypothesis testing, morphometrics analysis, study of penis morphology, and relaxed molecular clock analyses. Using multivariate morphometric analysis, we find that phylogenetically unrelated taxa have convergently evolved troglomorphism; alternative phylogenetic hypotheses involving less morphological convergence are not supported by Bayesian hypothesis testing. In one instance, this morphology is found in specimens from a high-elevation stony debris habitat, suggesting that troglomorphism can evolve in non-cave habitats. We discovered a strong positive relationship between troglomorphy index and relative divergence time, making it possible to predict taxon age from morphology. Most of our time estimates for the origin of highly-troglomorphic cave forms predate the Pleistocene. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: While several regions in the eastern and central United States are well-known hotspots for cave evolution, few modern phylogenetic studies have addressed the evolution of cave-obligate species in the western United States. Our integrative studies reveal the recurrent evolution of troglomorphism in a perhaps unexpected geographic region, at surprisingly deep time depths, and in sometimes surprising habitats. Because some newly discovered troglomorphic populations represent undescribed species, our findings stress the need for further biological
Merino-Sáinz, Izaskun; Anadón, Araceli; Torralba-Burrial, Antonio
Abstract There are significant gaps in accessible knowledge about the distribution and phenology of Iberian harvestmen (Arachnida: Opiliones). Harvestmen accessible datasets in Iberian Peninsula are unknown, an only two other datasets available in GBIF are composed exclusively of harvestmen records. Moreover, only a few harvestmen data from Iberian Peninsula are available in GBIF network (or in any network that allows public retrieval or use these data). This paper describes the data associated with the Opiliones kept in the BOS Arthropod Collection of the University of Oviedo, Spain (hosted in the Department of Biología de Organismos y Sistemas), filling some of those gaps. The specimens were mainly collected from the northern third of the Iberian Peninsula. The earliest specimen deposited in the collection, dating back to the early 20th century, belongs to the P. Franganillo Collection. The dataset documents the collection of 16,455 specimens, preserved in 3,772 vials. Approximately 38% of the specimens belong to the family Sclerosomatidae, and 26% to Phalangidae; six other families with fewer specimens are also included. Data quality control was incorporated at several steps of digitisation process to facilitate reuse and improve accuracy. The complete dataset is also provided in Darwin Core Archive format, allowing public retrieval, use and combination with other biological, biodiversity of geographical variables datasets. PMID:24146596
Machado, Glauco; Bonato, Vinícius; Oliveira, Paulo
Most harvestmen are nocturnal, nonacoustical, and nonvisual arthropods. They have a pair of exocrine glands on the cephalothorax that produce defensive volatile secretions. We investigated in the field the possible alarm effect of these secretions in the gregarious harvestman Goniosoma aff. proximum. A cotton swab soaked with the species' own exudate (treatment), or with water (control), was held 1-2 cm from the center of harvestmen aggregations. The results showed that the gland secretion elicits an alarm response in Goniosoma: whereas 73.3% of the aggregations dispersed after being stimulated with the gland exudate, only 3.3% responded to the water control. Respondent groups are larger than non-respondent groups, and the time of reaction to the secretion was inversely related to group size. This is the first demonstration of a chemically-mediated alarm effect in harvestmen. The alarm response in gregarious harvestmen has possibly evolved as a by-product of a primarily defensive reaction in the context of predator avoidance. The discovery of this novel function of scent-gland secretion is meaningful in view of the widespread occurrence of gregarious habit among species of the order Opiliones.
Full Text Available A comprehensive overview of plant, fungus and animal species of Austria revealed a total of 748 endemic and subendemic species, including, 11 harvestman and 46 spider species. Altogether two endemic harvestmen (Nemastoma bidentatum relictum, Nemastoma schuelleri and 8 endemic spiders (Abacoproeces molestus, Collinsia (caliginosa nemenziana, Mughiphantes severus, Mughiphantes styriacus, Pelecopsis alpica, Scotophaeus nanus, Troglohyphantes novicordis, Troglohyphantes tauriscus, beside 9 subendemic harvestman and 38 subendemic spider species have been recorded from Austria. Hot-spots of endemism in the Eastern Alps are the north-eastern (Ennstaler Alps and southern Calcareous Alps (Karawanken, Karnische Alps and the Central Alps (Hohe Tauern, Gurktaler Alps, Ötztaler and Stubaier Alps. Most of the endemic arachnid species occur from the nival down to the montane zone. Important habitats are rocky areas, caves and woodlands. High absolute numbers and percentages of endemics can be found within the harvestman families Cladonychiidae, Ischyropsalididae and Nemastomatidae and in the spider genera Lepthyphantes s. l. and Troglohyphantes. The conservation status of these highly endangered taxa – 85 % of the spider species and 100 % of the harvestman taxa are endangered in Austria – is poor.
Mercedes M Burns
Full Text Available Explaining the rapid, species-specific diversification of reproductive structures and behaviors is a long-standing goal of evolutionary biology, with recent research tending to attribute reproductive phenotypes to the evolutionary mechanisms of female mate choice or intersexual conflict. Progress in understanding these and other possible mechanisms depends, in part, on reconstructing the direction, frequency and relative timing of phenotypic evolution of male and female structures in species-rich clades. Here we examine evolution of reproductive structures in the leiobunine harvestmen or "daddy long-legs" of eastern North America, a monophyletic group that includes species in which males court females using nuptial gifts and other species that are equipped for apparent precopulatory antagonism (i.e., males with long, hardened penes and females with sclerotized pregenital barriers. We used parsimony- and Bayesian likelihood-based analyses to reconstruct character evolution in categorical reproductive traits and found that losses of ancestral gift-bearing penile sacs are strongly associated with gains of female pregenital barriers. In most cases, both events occur on the same internal branch of the phylogeny. These coevolutionary changes occurred at least four times, resulting in clade-specific designs in the penis and pregenital barrier. The discovery of convergent origins and/or enhancements of apparent precopulatory antagonism among closely related species offers an unusual opportunity to investigate how major changes in reproductive morphology have occurred. We propose new hypotheses that attribute these enhancements to changes in ecology or life history that reduce the duration of breeding seasons, an association that is consistent with female choice, sexual conflict, and/or an alternative evolutionary mechanism.
Rodrigo Souza Santos
Full Text Available Harvestmen (Arachnida: Opiliones are arachnids with wide geographical distribution, most species being recorded in Neotropical regions. These organisms have low dispersal ability, a high degree of endemism and are sensitive to environmental change; they also participate in the cycling of soil organic matter, since the eating habits of many species are detritivorous. Given the importance of these organisms, the aim of this work was to search for harvestmen fauna in a forest fragment located in the town of Plácido de Castro in the Brazilian state of Acre. Two methods were used for capture: pitfall traps (passive capture arranged along two transects, and free night searches (active collection. The pitfall traps consisted of a 500 mL plastic cup containing a 1% formaldehyde solution and drops of neutral detergent, and were collected weekly. Monthly active collections were carried out by four people over one hour. The following species of harvestmen were captured: Paecilaema marajoara, Paraprotus quadripunctatus, Taito kakera and Cynorta sp. (Cosmetidae; Geaya sp. (Sclerosomatidae; and four adults and one immature insect of the family Manaosbiidae. All the harvestmen recorded in this survey were captured during the free night-searches. This is the first report of the genera Geaya and Cynorta, and the species P. quadripunctatus, in the State of Acre. = Os opiliões (Arachnida: Opiliones são aracnídeos com ampla distribuição geográfica, sendo a maior parte das espécies registradas na região Neotropical. Esses organismos possuem baixa capacidade de dispersão, alto grau de endemismo e sensibilidade às mudanças ambientais, também participam da ciclagem da matéria orgânica do solo, visto que muitas espécies possuem o hábito alimentar detritívoro. Dada a importância desses organismos, objetivou-se com esse trabalho prospectar a fauna de opiliões em remanescente florestal localizado no município de Plácido de Castro, AC. Foram utilizados
Santamaria, Sergei; Enghoff, Henrik; Gruber, Jürgen
Laboulbeniales are well known ectoparasites of insects. Among arachnids they were only known parasitizing mites. A new genus of Laboulbeniales, with one species, Opilionomyces dicranolasmatis, is described for fungi parasitizing Dicranolasma harvestmen (Opiliones) collected in Turkey and Greece. ...... and Opiliones belong to the Arachnida subphylum within arthropods, the Laboulbeniales parasitizing the two orders show no morphological evidence of being closely related.......Laboulbeniales are well known ectoparasites of insects. Among arachnids they were only known parasitizing mites. A new genus of Laboulbeniales, with one species, Opilionomyces dicranolasmatis, is described for fungi parasitizing Dicranolasma harvestmen (Opiliones) collected in Turkey and Greece....... The new genus is characterized by the uniseriate receptacle divided into two parts, below the perithecium as a pedicel and above as a row of cells adnate and following the dorsal side of perithecium. The three upper tiers of wall cells are equal in height but shorter than the lower tier. The new genus...
Šťáhlavský, František; Opatova, Vera; Just, Pavel; Lotz, Leon N; Haddad, Charles R
The knowledge of cytogenetics in the harvestmen family Phalangiidae has been based on taxa from the Northern Hemisphere. We performed cytogenetic analysis on Guruia africana (Karsch, 1878) (2n=24) and four species of the genus Rhampsinitus Simon, 1879 (2n=24, 26, 34) from South Africa. Fluorescence in situ hybridization with an 18S rDNA probe was used to analyze the number and the distribution of this cluster in the family Phalangiidae for the first time. The results support the cytogenetic characteristics typical for the majority of harvestmen taxa, i.e. the predominance of small biarmed chromosomes and the absence of morphologically well-differentiated sex chromosomes as an ancestral state. We identified the number of 18S rDNA sites ranging from two in R. qachasneki Kauri, 1962 to seven in one population of R. leighi Pocock, 1903. Moreover, we found differences in the number and localization of 18S rDNA sites in R. leighi between populations from two localities and between sexes of R. capensis (Loman, 1898). The heterozygous states of the 18S rDNA sites in these species may indicate the presence of XX/XY and ZZ/ZW sex chromosomes, and the possible existence of these systems in harvestmen is discussed. The variability of the 18S rDNA sites indicates intensive chromosomal changes during the differentiation of the karyotypes, which is in contrast to the usual uniformity in chromosomal morphology known from harvestmen so far.
Full Text Available Alpha taxonomy, and specifically the delimitation of species, is becoming increasingly objective and integrative. The use of coalescent-based methods applied to genetic data is providing new tools for the discovery and delimitation of species. Here, we use an integrative approach via a combination of discovery-based multivariate morphological analyses to detect potential new species. These potential species are then used as a priori species in hypothesis-driven validation analyses with genetic data. This research focuses on the harvestmen genus Sclerobunus found throughout the mountainous regions of western North America. Based on our analyses, we conduct a revision of Sclerobunus resulting in synonymy of Cyptobunus with Sclerobunus including transfer of S. cavicolens comb. nov. and elevation of both subspecies of S. ungulatus: S. ungulatus comb. nov. and S. madhousensis comb. nov., stat. nov. The three subspecies of S. robustus are elevated, S. robustus, S. glorietus stat. nov., and S. idahoensis stat. nov. Additionally, five new species of Sclerobunus are described from New Mexico and Colorado, including S. jemez sp. nov., S. klomax sp. nov., S. skywalkeri sp. nov., S. speoventus sp. nov., and S. steinmanni sp. nov. Several of the newly described species are single-cave endemics, and our findings suggest that further exploration of western North American cave habitats will likely yield additional new species.
Merino-Sáinz, Izaskun; Torralba-Burrial, Antonio; Anadón, Araceli
In this study, we analyse the relevance of harvestmen distribution data derived from opportunistic, unplanned, and non-standardised collection events in an area in the north of the Iberian Peninsula. Using specimens deposited in the BOS Arthropod Collection at the University of Oviedo, we compared these data with data from planned, standardised, and periodic collections with pitfall traps in several locations in the same area. The Arthropod Collection, begun in 1977, includes specimens derived from both sampling types, and its recent digitisation allows for this type of comparative analysis. Therefore, this is the first data-paper employing a hybrid approach, wherein subset metadata are described alongside a comparative analysis. The full dataset can be accessed through Spanish GBIF IPT at http://www.gbif.es:8080/ipt/archive.do?r=Bos-Opi, and the metadata of the unplanned collection events at http://www.gbif.es:8080/ipt/resource.do?r=bos-opi_unplanned_collection_events. We have mapped the data on the 18 harvestmen species included in the unplanned collections and provided records for some species in six provinces for the first time. We have also provided the locations of Phalangium opilio in eight provinces without published records. These results highlight the importance of digitising data from unplanned biodiversity collections, as well as those derived from planned collections, especially in scarcely studied groups and areas.
Full Text Available A new species of the harvestmen Tithaeus calyptratus sp. n. (Epedanidae, Opiliones from Hainan Island (China is diagnosed, described and illustrated. A key to the two Chinese species of Tithaeus is provided.
Shultz, Jeffrey W
A new species of leiobunine harvestman from the Chiricahua Mountains of Arizona is described. The species lacks pro- and retrolateral submarginal rows of coxal denticles, a feature often considered diagnostic for the polyphyletic Nelima, and has greatly reduced ventral dentition on the palpal claw, as in the monotypic Leuronychus. In most other respects, the species is uniquely similar to members of a clade from central and western Mexico currently in the poly- and/or paraphyletic Leiobunum. These traits include a supracheliceral lamina with a wide transverse plate and a canaliculate ocularium, with an anterior surface that slopes dorsoposteriorly and a posterior surface that bulges rearward and is constricted at its base. There is thus a conflict between classification using traditional diagnostic characters and classification using unique similarity of non-traditional characters. The problem is exacerbated by the problematic status of each candidate genus. Here the species is placed in Leiobunum as L. silum sp. nov., a decision that gives weight to probable phylogenetic affinity with species currently placed in that genus. Leiobunum silum provides an excellent example of the limits of traditional typological classification and the need for a broad-scale morphological and molecular revision of sclerosomatid harvestmen.
Wiegand, J.; Feige, S.; Xie Quingling; Schreiber, U.; Wieditz, K.; Wittmann, C.; Luo Xiarong
222 Rn and 220 Rn concentrations were measured in cave dwellings and brick houses in the region of Yan'an (China) during summer 1997. The underground dwellings are built into Quaternary loess, and all investigated houses are founded on it. The median values of indoor 222 Rn and 220 Rn concentrations are 42 (n = 18) and 77Bq m -3 (n = 15) for brick houses and 92 (n = 23) and 215 (n = 17) Bq m -3 for cave dwellings. To classify the dwellings in respect to their cave-character, the fraction of walls having a direct contact to the loess is calculated for each dwelling. While the 222 Rn concentrations are increasing with higher fractions, the 220 Rn concentrations are not correlated with this fraction. On the other hand, due to the short half-life of 220 Rn the distance from the measuring point to the walls is negatively correlated with the 220 Rn concentration, while there is no correlation with the 222 Rn concentration. Therefore, concentric isolines of 220 Rn concentrations showing a strong gradient were detected in cave dwellings. An influence of the ventilation rate is distinct for 222 Rn but weak for 220 Rn. The effective dose rates for 222 Rn and 220 Rn and their progenies are calculated for brick houses (2.7 mSv y -1 ), cave dwellings (7.1 mSv y -1 ), and for traditional cave dwellings with a bed foundation built with loess (16.7 mSv y -1 ). These calculations are based on summer measurements only. It is expected that the true effective dose rates will be significantly higher
Bernhard A. Huber
Full Text Available Pholcidae are ubiquitous spiders in tropical and subtropical caves around the globe, yet very little is known about cave-dwelling pholcids beyond what is provided in taxonomic descriptions and faunistic papers. This paper provides a review based on a literature survey and unpublished information, while pointing out potential biases and promising future projects. A total of 473 native (i.e. non-introduced species of Pholcidae have been collected in about 1000 caves. The large majority of cave-dwelling pholcids are not troglomorphic; a list of 86 troglomorphic species is provided, including 21 eyeless species and 21 species with strongly reduced eyes. Most troglomorphic pholcids are representatives of only two genera: Anopsicus Chamberlin & Ivie, 1938 and Metagonia Simon, 1893. Mexico is by far the richest country in terms of troglomorphic pholcids, followed by several islands and mainland SE Asia. The apparent dominance of Mexico may partly be due to collectors’ and taxonomists’ biases. Most caves harbor only one pholcid species, but 91 caves harbor two and more species (up to five species. Most troglomorphic pholcids belong to two subfamilies (Modisiminae, Pholcinae, very few belong to Smeringopinae and Arteminae, none to Ninetinae. This is in agreement with the recent finding that within Pholcidae, microhabitat changes in general are concentrated in Modisiminae and Pholcinae.
Makarov, Slobodan E; Bodner, Michaela; Reineke, Doris; Vujisić, Ljubodrag V; Todosijević, Marina M; Antić, Dragan Ž; Vagalinski, Boyan; Lučić, Luka R; Mitić, Bojan M; Mitov, Plamen; Anđelković, Boban D; Lucić, Sofija Pavković; Vajs, Vlatka; Tomić, Vladimir T; Raspotnig, Günther
Cave animals live under highly constant ecological conditions and in permanent darkness, and many evolutionary adaptations of cave-dwellers have been triggered by their specific environment. A similar "cave effect" leading to pronounced chemical interactions under such conditions may be assumed, but the chemoecology of troglobionts is mostly unknown. We investigated the defensive chemistry of a largely cave-dwelling julid group, the controversial tribe "Typhloiulini", and we included some cave-dwelling and some endogean representatives. While chemical defense in juliform diplopods is known to be highly uniform, and mainly based on methyl- and methoxy-substituted benzoquinones, the defensive secretions of typhloiulines contained ethyl-benzoquinones and related compounds. Interestingly, ethyl-benzoquinones were found in some, but not all cave-dwelling typhloiulines, and some non-cave dwellers also contained these compounds. On the other hand, ethyl-benzoquinones were not detected in troglobiont nor in endogean typhloiuline outgroups. In order to explain the taxonomic pattern of ethyl-benzoquinone occurrence, and to unravel whether a cave-effect triggered ethyl-benzoquinone evolution, we classed the "Typhloiulini" investigated here within a phylogenetic framework of julid taxa, and traced the evolutionary history of ethyl-benzoquinones in typhloiulines in relation to cave-dwelling. The results indicated a cave-independent evolution of ethyl-substituted benzoquinones, indicating the absence of a "cave effect" on the secretions of troglobiont Typhloiulini. Ethyl-benzoquinones probably evolved early in an epi- or endogean ancestor of a clade including several, but not all Typhloiulus (basically comprising a taxonomic entity known as "Typhloiulus sensu stricto") and Serboiulus. Ethyl-benzoquinones are proposed as novel and valuable chemical characters for julid systematics.
Obame-Nkoghe, Judicaël; Leroy, Eric-Maurice; Paupy, Christophe
The progressive anthropization of caves for food resources or economic purposes increases human exposure to pathogens that naturally infect cave-dwelling animals. The presence of wild or domestic animals in the immediate surroundings of caves also may contribute to increasing the risk of emergence of such pathogens. Some zoonotic pathogens are transmitted through direct contact, but many others require arthropod vectors, such as blood-feeding insects. In Africa, hematophagous insects often play a key role in the epidemiology of many pathogens; however, their ecology in cave habitats remains poorly known. During the last decades, several investigations carried out in Afrotropical caves suggested the medical and veterinary importance particularly of insect taxa of the Diptera order. Therefore, the role of some of these insects as vectors of pathogens that infect cave-dwelling vertebrates has been studied. The present review summarizes these findings, brings insights into the diversity of cave-dwelling hematophagous Diptera and their involvement in pathogen transmission, and finally discusses new challenges and future research directions.
Shang Bing; Cui Hongxing; Li Hongzhou
This paper describes the measured results of 222 Rn and 220 Tn concentrations in six cave dwellings and adobe Kang in Ning county of Gansu Province by using Rn-Tn solid-state nuclear track detectors. 222 Rn and 220 Tn concentrations are 161 and 307 Bq·m -3 (10 cm from soil wall), 99 and 158 Bq·m -3 (middle of the room) in cave dwellings, and 133 and 317 Bq·m -3 (5 cm above adobe Kang), 179 and 145 Bq·m -3 (20 cm above adobe Kang) on soil beds, respectively. 222 Rn and 220 Tn concentrations near the wall are higher than those obtained other place in the room. 222 Rn and 220 Tn concentrations above the adobe Kang are related to the distance from the surface of adobe Kang and heating situation. The residents sleep directly on the beds, especially for the children, the time staying on the adobe Kang are longer than other position. The dose of 222 Rn and 220 Tn from the traditional adobe Kang should be continuously studied
Svojanovská, H.; Nguyen, Petr; Hiřman, M.; Tuf, I. H.; Wahab, R. A.; Haddad, C. R.; Šťáhlavský, F.
Roč. 148, 2-3 (2016), s. 227-236 ISSN 1424-8581 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GP14-35819P Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : 18S rDNA * FISH * karyotype evolution Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.354, year: 2016
Geertjes, GJ; Videler, JJ
The breeding biology of the cave-dwelling Mediterranean triplefin blenny Tripterygion melanurus (Pisces, Blennioidei) was studied in the field. Two types of reproductive male were observed, territorial males and non-territorial males. Territorial males establish territories for mating, but not
Sun Quanfu; Hou Changsong; Zhang Shouzhi; Nie Xiaoqian; Shang Bing
Objective: To explore a residential area with elevated indoor radon exposure for conducting epidemiological studies on indoor radon and lung cancer. Methods: Two hundred and two cave-dwellings (CD) including loess CD, brick CD, stone CD, and ordinary house in twenty villages were selected from Yan'an and Lvliang in the Chinese loess plateau. Indoor levels of thoron and its progeny as well as radon were measured with passive radon-thoron discriminative detectors and thoron progeny deposition rate devices. The exposure period covered from August 2001 through August 2002. Results: Loess CD was one of the most common type of dwelling caves in both areas. The indoor radon concentrations in loess CD ranged from 17 to 179 Bq/m 3 ; thoron varied sub-stantially depending upon the distance from the device to the wall, ranged from 10 to 760 Bq/m 3 . Geometric means of indoor radon, thoron and thoron's progeny (EEC Tn ) of loess caves in Yan'an area were estimated to be 71, 185 and 2.2 Bq/m 3 , respectively, and the corresponding figures were 73, 145 and 116 Bq/m 3 in Lvliang area. Possible contamination of thoron on radon measurement in a previous case-control study on lung caner was discussed. The study revealed that the indoor air pollution in Yan'an area was slight compared with that in Lvliang area. Migration was very low. Eighty-six percent of the investigated persons have had no migration in Yan'an area, and 90 percent of the cave-dwellings where the subjects once resided were available to our measurements. Two million people have been living in cave-dwellings over several generations. Conclusion: The investigated cave-dwelling area in Yan'an is suitable for conducting epidemiological study on residential thoron and radon exposure and lung cancer.(authors)
Nenadić, Marija; Ljaljević-Grbić, Milica; Stupar, Miloš; Vukojević, Jelena; Ćirić, Ana; Tešević, Vele; Vujisić, Ljubodrag; Todosijević, Marina; Vesović, Nikola; Živković, Nemanja; Ćurčić, Srećko
The antifungal potential of the pygidial gland secretion of the troglophilic ground beetle Laemostenus punctatus from a cave in Southeastern Serbia against cave-dwelling micromycetes, isolated from the same habitat, has been investigated. Eleven collected samples were analyzed and 32 isolates of cave-dwelling fungi were documented. A total of 14 fungal species were identified as members of the genera Aspergillus, Penicillium, Alternaria, Cladosporium, Rhizopus, Trichoderma, Arthrinium, Aureobasidium, Epicoccum, Talaromyces, and Fusarium. Five isolates were selected for testing the antifungal activity of the pygidial gland secretion: Talaromyces duclauxi, Aspergillus brunneouniseriatus, Penicillium sp., Rhizopus stolonifer, and Trichoderma viride. The microdilution method has been applied to detect minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) and minimal fungicidal concentrations (MFCs). The most sensitive isolate was Penicillium sp., while the other isolates demonstrated a high level of resistance to the tested agent. L. punctatus has developed a special mechanism of producing specific compounds that act synergistically within the secretion mixture, which are responsible for the antifungal action against pathogens from the cave. The results open opportunities for further research in the field of ground beetle defense against pathogens, which could have an important application in human medicine, in addition to the environmental impact, primarily.
Vesović, Nikola; Ćurčić, Srećko; Vujisić, Ljubodrag; Nenadić, Marija; Krstić, Gordana; Perić-Mataruga, Vesna; Milosavljević, Slobodan; Antić, Dragan; Mandić, Boris; Petković, Matija; Vučković, Ivan; Marković, Đorđe; Vrbica, Maja; Ćurčić, Božidar; Makarov, Slobodan
Three adult cave-dwelling ground beetle species were induced to discharge secretions of their pygidial glands into vials. Dichloromethane extraction was used to obtain the secretions. In total, 42 compounds were identified by GC/MS analysis. Pheggomisetes ninae contained 32 glandular compounds, Laemostenus (Pristonychus) punctatus 13, whereas Duvalius (Paraduvalius) milutini had nine compounds. Caproic, oleic, palmitic, and stearic acids were present in the samples of all analyzed species. Undecane was predominant in the extract of L. punctatus. Palmitic acid was the major component in the secretion of D. milutini. Finally, the most abundant compounds in P. ninae secretion were heptacosene and nonacosadienes. Herein, we present the first data on the identification of pygidial gland secretion components in both troglophilous and troglobite cave-dwelling ground beetles. Some compounds are reported for the first time in the secretions of ground beetles and other higher or lower taxa. The adaptation to underground life has not led to a reduction or changes in the chemical defense mechanism in the analyzed troglophilous and troglobitic Platyninae and Trechinae taxa.
Boukhchim, Nouri; Ben Fraj, Tarek; Reynard, Emmanuel
Southeast Tunisia is known for different types of cave dwellings developed for centuries on the Matmata-Dahar plateau. Their shaping takes into account the geological and geomorphological context of the sites. They thus provide an interesting example of geoheritage on which was developed an important cultural and architectural heritage. Most of these sites are now not more used and partly abandoned. An interdisciplinary research - crossing geomorphological and archaeological approaches - was carried out in two sites: Haddej and Guermessa. Haddej site belongs to the Matmata area and its surroundings located in the northern part of the plateau. It is characterized by cave dwellings dug vertically and then laterally in the Quaternary wind silt accumulations (loess) filling the valleys that dissect the plateau surface. The latter corresponds to the back of a monoclinic structure cuesta.Guermessa site belongs to the Tataouine region, located in the southern part of the plateau. It is characterized by troglodyte dwellings dug laterally in alternations of limestone, clay, marl and dolomite layers of Cenomanian and Turonian age. These alternations are the backbone of buttes still partially attached to the front of the cuesta. Both sites offer favourable conditions for geomorphological study. They exhibit a wide range of structural landforms within the monoclinic structure, and their surroundings present a variety of shapes and Quaternary formations allowing the study of the geomorphological and palaeoenvironmental changes that happened during the Quaternary in this now arid region. These geosites were assessed using the method developed by the University of Lausanne (Reynard et al. 2015), which allowed us to assign them a strong scientific, aesthetic, cultural, educational and tourist value. Proposals for their tourist promotion were then proposed taking into account the lack of maintenance that reduces their cultural and tourist value. Reference Reynard E., Perret A
Grismer, L Lee; Quah, Evan S H; Anuar M S, Shahrul; Muin, Mohd Abdul; Wood, Perry L; Nor, Siti Azizah Mohd
A newly discovered, diminutive, cave-dwelling, lowland species of the colubrid snake genus Lycodon Boie is described from a limestone cave along the Thai-Malaysian border in the state of Perlis, northwestern Peninsular Malaysia. Lycodon cavernicolus sp. nov. is most closely related to L. butleri Boulenger, an endemic, upland, forest-dwelling species from Peninsular Malaysia of the fasciatus group but is separated from L. butleri and all other species of the L. fasciatus group and the closely related L. ruhstrati group by having the combination of 245 (male) and 232 (female) ventral scales; 113 (male) and 92 (female) paired, subcaudal scales; a single precloacal plate; nine or 10 supralabials; 10 or 11 infralabials; a maximum total length of 508 mm (female); a relative tail length of 0.25-0.27; an immaculate venter in juveniles and dark-brown, posterior, ventral scale margins in adults; and dorsal and caudal bands in juveniles white. The discovery of L. cavernicolus sp. nov. adds to a rapidly growing list of newly discovered reptiles from karst regions and limestone forests of Peninsular Malaysia, underscoring the fact that these areas should be studied before they are quarried as they harbor a significant portion of the Peninsular Malaysia's herpetological diversity.
Riesch, Rüdiger; Reznick, David N; Plath, Martin; Schlupp, Ingo
Cavefishes have long been used as model organisms showcasing adaptive diversification, but does adaptation to caves also facilitate the evolution of reproductive isolation from surface ancestors? We raised offspring of wild-caught surface- and cave-dwelling ecotypes of the neotropical fish Poecilia mexicana to sexual maturity in a 12-month common garden experiment. Fish were raised under one of two food regimes (high vs. low), and this was crossed with differences in lighting conditions (permanent darkness vs. 12:12 h light:dark cycle) in a 2 × 2 factorial design, allowing us to elucidate potential patterns of local adaptation in life histories. Our results reveal a pattern of sex-specific local life-history adaptation: Surface molly females had the highest fitness in the treatment best resembling their habitat of origin (high food and a light:dark cycle), and suffered from almost complete reproductive failure in darkness, while cave molly females were not similarly affected in any treatment. Males of both ecotypes, on the other hand, showed only weak evidence for local adaptation. Nonetheless, local life-history adaptation in females likely contributes to ecological diversification in this system and other cave animals, further supporting the role of local adaptation due to strong divergent selection as a major force in ecological speciation.
Full Text Available Many new localities for Polish harvestmen are recorded, specifically for species whose ranges do not encompass the whole country. Opilio canestrinii is recorded for the first time in Poland.
Discrimination between Pseudogymnoascus destructans, other dermatophytes of cave-dwelling bats, and related innocuous keratinophilic fungi based on electronic-nose/GC signatures of VOC-metabolites produced in culture
Alphus Dan Wilson; Lisa Beth Forse
White-nose syndrome (WNS), caused by the fungal dermatophyte (Pseudogymnoascus destructans), is considered the most important disease affecting hibernating bats in North America. The identification of dermatophytic fungi, isolated from the skins of cave-dwelling bat species, is necessary to distinguish pathogenic (disease-causing) microbes from those that are innocuous...
Stevens, Lori; Monroy, M. Carlota; Rodas, Antonieta Guadalupe; Dorn, Patricia L.
Background Triatoma dimidiata, currently the major Central American vector of Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas disease, inhabits caves throughout the region. This research investigates the possibility that cave dwelling T. dimidiata might transmit the parasite to humans and links the blood meal sources of cave vectors to cultural practices that differ among locations. Methodology/Principal Findings We determined the blood meal sources of twenty-four T. dimidiata collected from two locations in Guatemala and one in Belize where human interactions with the caves differ. Blood meal sources were determined by cloning and sequencing PCR products amplified from DNA extracted from the vector abdomen using primers specific for the vertebrate 12S mitochondrial gene. The blood meal sources were inferred by ≥99% identity with published sequences. We found 70% of cave-collected T. dimidiata positive for human DNA. The vectors had fed on 10 additional vertebrates with a variety of relationships to humans, including companion animal (dog), food animals (pig, sheep/goat), wild animals (duck, two bat, two opossum species) and commensal animals (mouse, rat). Vectors from all locations fed on humans and commensal animals. The blood meal sources differ among locations, as well as the likelihood of feeding on dog and food animals. Vectors from one location were tested for T. cruzi infection, and 30% (3/10) tested positive, including two positive for human blood meals. Conclusions/Significance Cave dwelling Chagas disease vectors feed on humans and commensal animals as well as dog, food animals and wild animals. Blood meal sources were related to human uses of the caves. We caution that just as T. dimidiata in caves may pose an epidemiological risk, there may be other situations where risk is thought to be minimal, but is not. PMID:25211347
Full Text Available Triatoma dimidiata, currently the major Central American vector of Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas disease, inhabits caves throughout the region. This research investigates the possibility that cave dwelling T. dimidiata might transmit the parasite to humans and links the blood meal sources of cave vectors to cultural practices that differ among locations.We determined the blood meal sources of twenty-four T. dimidiata collected from two locations in Guatemala and one in Belize where human interactions with the caves differ. Blood meal sources were determined by cloning and sequencing PCR products amplified from DNA extracted from the vector abdomen using primers specific for the vertebrate 12S mitochondrial gene. The blood meal sources were inferred by ≥ 99% identity with published sequences. We found 70% of cave-collected T. dimidiata positive for human DNA. The vectors had fed on 10 additional vertebrates with a variety of relationships to humans, including companion animal (dog, food animals (pig, sheep/goat, wild animals (duck, two bat, two opossum species and commensal animals (mouse, rat. Vectors from all locations fed on humans and commensal animals. The blood meal sources differ among locations, as well as the likelihood of feeding on dog and food animals. Vectors from one location were tested for T. cruzi infection, and 30% (3/10 tested positive, including two positive for human blood meals.Cave dwelling Chagas disease vectors feed on humans and commensal animals as well as dog, food animals and wild animals. Blood meal sources were related to human uses of the caves. We caution that just as T. dimidiata in caves may pose an epidemiological risk, there may be other situations where risk is thought to be minimal, but is not.
Full Text Available Biomimetic robots (BRs are becoming more common in behavioral research and, if they are accepted as conspecifics, allow for new forms of experimental manipulations of social interactions. Nevertheless, it is often not clear which cues emanating from a BR are actually used as communicative signals and how species or populations with different sensory makeups react to specific types of BRs. We herein present results from experiments using two populations of livebearing fishes that differ in their sensory capabilities. In the South of Mexico, surface-dwelling mollies (Poecilia mexicana successfully invaded caves and adapted to dark conditions. While almost without pigment, these cave mollies possess smaller but still functional eyes. Although previous studies found cave mollies to show reduced shoaling preferences with conspecifics in light compared to surface mollies, it is assumed that they possess specialized adaptations to maintain some kind of sociality also in their dark habitats. By testing surface- and cave-dwelling mollies with RoboFish, a BR made for use in laboratory experiments with guppies and sticklebacks, we asked to what extent visual and non-visual cues play a role in their social behavior. Both cave- and surface-dwelling mollies followed the BR as well as a live companion when tested in light. However, when tested in darkness, only surface-dwelling fish were attracted by a live conspecific, whereas cave-dwelling fish were not. Neither cave- nor surface-dwelling mollies were attracted to RoboFish in darkness. This is the first study to use BRs for the investigation of social behavior in mollies and to compare responses to BRs both in light and darkness. As our RoboFish is accepted as conspecific by both used populations of the Atlantic molly only under light conditions but not in darkness, we argue that our replica is providing mostly visual cues.
Obame-Nkoghe, Judicaël; Rahola, Nil; Bourgarel, Mathieu; Yangari, Patrick; Prugnolle, Franck; Maganga, Gael Darren; Leroy, Eric-Maurice; Fontenille, Didier; Ayala, Diego; Paupy, Christophe
Evidence of haemosporidian infections in bats and bat flies has motivated a growing interest in characterizing their transmission cycles. In Gabon (Central Africa), many caves house massive colonies of bats that are known hosts of Polychromophilus Dionisi parasites, presumably transmitted by blood-sucking bat flies. However, the role of bat flies in bat malaria transmission remains under-documented. An entomological survey was carried out in four caves in Gabon to investigate bat fly diversity, infestation rates and host preferences and to determine their role in Polychromophilus parasite transmission. Bat flies were sampled for 2-4 consecutive nights each month from February to April 2011 (Faucon and Zadie caves) and from May 2012 to April 2013 (Kessipoughou and Djibilong caves). Bat flies isolated from the fur of each captured bat were morphologically identified and screened for infection by haemosporidian parasites using primers targeting the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Among the 1,154 bats captured and identified as Miniopterus inflatus Thomas (n = 354), Hipposideros caffer Sundevall complex (n = 285), Hipposideros gigas Wagner (n = 317), Rousettus aegyptiacus Geoffroy (n = 157, and Coleura afra Peters (n = 41), 439 (38.0 %) were infested by bat flies. The 1,063 bat flies recovered from bats belonged to five taxa: Nycteribia schmidlii scotti Falcoz, Eucampsipoda africana Theodor, Penicillidia fulvida Bigot, Brachytarsina allaudi Falcoz and Raymondia huberi Frauenfeld group. The mean infestation rate varied significantly according to the bat species (ANOVA, F (4,75) = 13.15, P bat fly species and host bat species was observed. Polychromophilus melanipherus Dionisi was mainly detected in N. s. scotti and P. fulvida and less frequently in E. africana, R. huberi group and B. allaudi bat flies. These results suggest that N. s. scotti and P. fulvida could potentially be involved in P. melanipherus transmission among cave-dwelling bats
Ceccarelli, F. Sara; Monte, Bruno G. O.; Proud, Daniel N.; DaSilva, Márcio Bernardino; Bichuette, Maria E.
A new troglobitic harvestman, Relictopiolus galadriel gen. nov et sp. nov., is described from Olhos d’Água cave, Itacarambi, Minas Gerais State, Brazil. Morphological characters, including male genitalia and exomorphology, suggest that this species belongs to the family Kimulidae, and it appears to share the greatest similarities with Tegipiolus pachypus. Bayesian inference analyses of a molecular dataset strongly support the inclusion of this species in Kimulidae and confirm the hypothesized sister-group relationship between R. galadriel and T. pachypus. A time calibrated phylogeny indicates that these sister-taxa diverged from a common ancestor approximately 40 Mya, during the Paleogene. The current range of Kimulidae illustrates a remarkable disjunct distribution, and leads us to hypothesize that the ancestral distribution of Kimulidae was once much more widespread across eastern Brazil. This may be attributed to the Eocene radiation associated with the warming (and humidifying) events in the Cenozoic when the best conditions for evergreen tropical vegetation in South America were established and followed by the extinction of kimulid epigean populations together with the retraction of rain forests during the Oligocene to Miocene cooling. The discovery of this relictual troglobite indicates that the Olhos d’Água cave was a stable refugium for this ancient lineage of kimulids and acted as a "museum" of biodiversity. Our findings, considered collectively with the diverse troglofauna of the Olhos d’Água cave, highlight it as one of the most important hotspots of troglobite diversity and endemism in the Neotropics. Given the ecological stresses on this habitat, the cavernicolous fauna are at risk of extinction and we emphasize the urgent need for appropriate conservation actions. Finally, we propose the transfer of Acanthominua, Euminua, Euminuoides and Pseudominua from Kimulidae to Zalmoxidae, resulting in two new synonymies and 13 new combinations. PMID:29190302
Chang, Jin; Masters, Amber; Avery, Amanda; Werren, John H
Recent studies indicate that a newly described bacterial endosymbiont, Cardinium, is widespread in arthropods and induces different reproductive manipulations in hosts. In this study, we used a portion of the 16S rRNA gene of the Cardinium to screen 16 Opilionid species from the suborder Palptores. We found the incidence of Cardinium in these Opiliones was significantly higher than in other pooled arthropods (31.2% versus 7.2%, P=0.007). Phylogenetic analyses using maximum parsimony (MP) and Bayesian analysis revealed two distinct clades in Opiliones. One is a divergent monophyletic clade with strong support that has so far not been found in other arthropods, and a second one contains Cardinium both from Opiliones and other arthropods. There is not complete concordance of the Cardinium strains with host phylogeny, suggesting some horizontal movement of the bacteria among Opiliones. Although the divergence in the sequenced 16S rRNA region between the Cardinium infecting Opiliones and Cardinium from other arthropods is greater than among Cardinium found in other arthropods, all are monophyletic with respect to the outgroup bacteria (endosymbionts of Acanthamoeba). Based on high pairwise genetic distances, deep branch, and a distinct phylogenetic grouping, we conclude that some Opiliones harbor a newly discovered Cardinium clade. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Viedma Urdiales Eugenia María
Full Text Available The construction and use of subterranean caves for different functions has been relatively commonplace throughout history in different regions around the world, especially in the Mediterranean basin. Some of them are still standing at the beginning of the 21st century, and are a good example of adaptation to the geographic environment, and a part of the historical heritage. Following a short overview of the different Mediterranean countries, this work pays special attention to the present use of caves as dwelling spaces in Italy, and particularly in Spain where the caves are currently in an interesting process of renovation to meet the needs of the present population. This process is helping to boost the local economy, and it is funded by both private and public sources in several towns in Andalusia (Spain.
Marcio Bernardino DaSilva
Full Text Available The harvestmen subfamily Hernandariinae is reviewed and a new classification is proposed based on cladistic analysis using 67 morphological characters. The subfamily is composed of six genera and 23 species and occurs in south-southeastern Brazil, Paraguay, and northeastern Argentina. Fourteen new combinations are proposed: Hernandaria armatifrons (Roewer, 1917; H. una (Mello-Leitão, 1927; Acrogonyleptes granulatus (H. Soares, 1966; A. pectinifemur (Soares & Soares, 1947; Acanthogonyleptes alticola (Mello-Leitão, 1922; A. editus (Roewer, 1943; A. fallax (Mello-Leitão, 1932; A. fulvigranulatus (Mello-Leitão, 1922; A. marmoratus (Mello-Leitão, 1940; A. pictus (Piza, 1942; A. singularis (Mello-Leitão, 1935; A. soaresi (Mello-Leitão, 1944; A. variolosus (Mello-Leitão, 1944. Seven synonymies are proposed: Proweyhia Mello-Leitão, 1927 and Metaxundarava Mello-Leitão, 1927 = Hernandaria Sørensen, 1884; Apembolephaenus calcaratus Soares & Soares, 1945 = H. armatifrons (Roewer, 1917; Sphaerobunus Rower, 1917 and Paraproweyhia Soares & Soares, 1947 = Acrogonyleptes Roewer, 1917; Paraproweyhia curitibae Soares & Soares, 1947 = Acrogonyleptes exochus (Mello-Leitão, 1931; and Melloleitaniana curitibae B. Soares, 1943 = Acrogonyleptes spinifrons Roewer, 1917. Three species are revalidated: Acrogonyleptes granulatus (H. Soares, 1966, A. pectinifemur (Soares & Soares, 1947, and A. spinifrons Roewer, 1917. Seven new species are described: Hernandaria sundermannorum sp. nov. (São Paulo State, Brazil, Hernandaria anitagaribaldiae sp. nov. (Santa Catarina State, Brazil, Hernandaria zumbii sp. nov. (Santa Catarina State, Brazil, Hernandaria chicomendesi sp. nov. (Santa Catarina State, Brazil, Acrogonyleptes cheguevarai sp. nov. (Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil, Pseudotrogulus pagu sp. nov. (São Paulo State, Brazil, Pseudotrogulus trotskyi sp. nov. (Paraná State, Brazil.
Full Text Available In the Solling mountains (Southern Lower Saxony, Germany the fauna was sampled for one year with stem eclectors in adjacent spruce, mixed (spruce/beech, and beech stands. The tree age was more than 90 years. Four sampling treatments were established: eclectors on spruce stems in the spruce stand (1, on beech stems in the beech stand (2, and on spruce (3 and beech stems in the mixed stand (4. The following harvestmen species, with 1601 individuals in total, were found: Mitopus morio, Oligolophus tridens, Platybunus bucephalus, Leiobunum blackwalli, and Leiobunum rotundum. The number of individuals was highest on spruce stems in the more open spruce stand, mainly due to Mitopus morio, whereas number of species was highest on beech stems in the mixed stand. Both the number of individuals and species were lowest on beech stems in the beech stand. Here, additional information about the phenology of the harvestmen species is given.
Thaiany Miranda Costa
Full Text Available Harvestmen feed on live, dead and fresh, or decomposing animals, fungi, and plant matter, being very dependent on chemoreception to find food. Herein we performed an experiment to test if individuals of Discocyrtus pectinifemur Mello-Leitão, 1937 (Gonyleptidae (n = 23 behave differently when in contact with olfactory cues from different sources (rotten prey, non-rotten prey and a control. Using dead crickets in a box covered with a mesh, and recording the time the harvestmen spent in the vicinities of the box, we show that D. pectinifemur detects non-rotten prey and stays longer on it than on the other two treatments. Our results contrast with a previous study on another species, showing that we should not generalize results obtained for one species. Our data also suggest that olfactory receptors occur on the legs of these harvestmen and that D. pectinifemur might choose dietary items based on olfaction.
Giribet, Gonzalo; Edgecombe, Gregory D.; Wheeler, Ward C.; Babbitt, Courtney
The ordinal level phylogeny of the Arachnida and the suprafamilial level phylogeny of the Opiliones were studied on the basis of a combined analysis of 253 morphological characters, the complete sequence of the 18S rRNA gene, and the D3 region of the 28S rRNA gene. Molecular data were collected for 63 terminal taxa. Morphological data were collected for 35 exemplar taxa of Opiliones, but groundplans were applied to some of the remaining chelicerate groups. Six extinct terminals, including Paleozoic scorpions, are scored for morphological characters. The data were analyzed using strict parsimony for the morphological data matrix and via direct optimization for the molecular and combined data matrices. A sensitivity analysis of 15 parameter sets was undertaken, and character congruence was used as the optimality criterion to choose among competing hypotheses. The results obtained are unstable for the high-level chelicerate relationships (except for Tetrapulmonata, Pedipalpi, and Camarostomata), and the sister group of the Opiliones is not clearly established, although the monophyly of Dromopoda is supported under many parameter sets. However, the internal phylogeny of the Opiliones is robust to parameter choice and allows the discarding of previous hypotheses of opilionid phylogeny such as the "Cyphopalpatores" or "Palpatores." The topology obtained is congruent with the previous hypothesis of "Palpatores" paraphyly as follows: (Cyphophthalmi (Eupnoi (Dyspnoi + Laniatores))). Resolution within the Eupnoi, Dyspnoi, and Laniatores (the latter two united as Dyspnolaniatores nov.) is also stable to the superfamily level, permitting a new classification system for the Opiliones. c2002 The Willi Hennig Society.
Full Text Available Diversity in reproductive structures is frequently explained by selection acting at individual to generational timescales, but interspecific differences predicted by such models (e.g., female choice or sexual conflict are often untestable in a phylogenetic framework. An alternative approach focuses on clade- or function-specific hypotheses that predict evolutionary patterns in terms neutral to specific modes of sexual selection. Here we test a hypothesis that diversity of reproductive structures in leiobunine harvestmen (daddy longlegs of eastern North America reflects two sexually coevolved but non-overlapping precopulatory strategies, a primitive solicitous strategy (females enticed by penis-associated nuptial gifts, and a multiply derived antagonistic strategy (penis exerts mechanical force against armature of the female pregenital opening. Predictions of sexual coevolution and fidelity to precopulatory categories were tested using 10 continuously varying functional traits from 28 species. Multivariate analyses corroborated sexual coevolution but failed to partition species by precopulatory strategy, with multiple methods placing species along a spectrum of mechanical antagonistic potential. These findings suggest that precopulatory features within species reflect different co-occurring levels of solicitation and antagonism, and that gradualistic evolutionary pathways exist between extreme strategies. The ability to quantify antagonistic potential of precopulatory structures invites comparison with ecological variables that may promote evolutionary shifts in precopulatory strategies.
Wachter, Gregor A; Papadopoulou, Anna; Muster, Christoph; Arthofer, Wolfgang; Knowles, L Lacey; Steiner, Florian M; Schlick-Steiner, Birgit C
The Pleistocene climatic fluctuations had a huge impact on all life forms, and various hypotheses regarding the survival of organisms during glacial periods have been postulated. In the European Alps, evidence has been found in support of refugia outside the ice shield (massifs de refuge) acting as sources for postglacial recolonization of inner-Alpine areas. In contrast, evidence for survival on nunataks, ice-free areas above the glacier, remains scarce. Here, we combine multivariate genetic analyses with ecological niche models (ENMs) through multiple timescales to elucidate the history of Alpine Megabunus harvestmen throughout the ice ages, a genus that comprises eight high-altitude endemics. ENMs suggest two types of refugia throughout the last glacial maximum, inner-Alpine survival on nunataks for four species and peripheral refugia for further four species. In some geographic regions, the patterns of genetic variation are consistent with long-distance dispersal out of massifs de refuge, repeatedly coupled with geographic parthenogenesis. In other regions, long-term persistence in nunataks may dominate the patterns of genetic divergence. Overall, our results suggest that glacial cycles contributed to allopatric diversification in Alpine Megabunus, both within and at the margins of the ice shield. These findings exemplify the power of ENM projections coupled with genetic analyses to identify hypotheses about the position and the number of glacial refugia and thus to evaluate the role of Pleistocene glaciations in driving species-specific responses of recolonization or persistence that may have contributed to observed patterns of biodiversity. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Full Text Available Comprising more than 6500 species, Opiliones is the third most diverse order of Arachnida, after the megadiverse Acari and Araneae. The database referred here is part 1 of 12 of a project containing an intended worldwide checklist of species and subspecies of Opiliones as Darwin Core archives, and it includes the superfamilies Travunioidea and Triaenonychoidea. These two superfamilies are often treated together under the denomination of Insidiatores. In this Part 1, a total of 571 species and subspecies are listed. Briggsidae and Cladonychiidae are both downgraded to subfamilies of Travuniidae. Peltonychia Roewer, 1935 is an available name and senior synonym of Hadziana Roewer, 1935 and is herein revalidated. Seven genera of Triaenonychidae described by Lawrence between 1931 and 1933 originally failed to comply ICZN rules for availability (Art. 13.3. All of them only became available when Staręga (1992 designated a type species for each. Therefore, the correct authorships of Austromontia Lawrence, 1931, Biacumontia Lawrence, 1931, Graemontia Lawrence, 1931, Larifugella Lawrence, 1933, Mensamontia Lawrence, 1931, Monomontia Lawrence, 1931 and Rostromontia Lawrence, 1931 are all Staręga, 1992. Fumontana Shear, 1977, originally referred only to subfamily Triaenonychinae (as opposed to Soerensenellinae then and not corresponding to present Triaenonychinae, not to any tribe (which in turn correspond to modern subfamilies is herein included in the subfamily Triaenonychinae. Picunchenops Maury, 1988 originally not included in any tribe of Triaenonychidae, is herein included in the subfamily Triaenonychinae. Trojanella Karaman, 2005, originally ranked as Travunioidea incertae sedis, is herein included in the Travuniidae Travuniinae. Nuncia ovata Roewer, 1915 (synonymized with Triaenonyx cockayni Hogg, 1920 by Forster (1954, but with inverted precedence is here combined as Nuncia coriacea ovata Roewer, 1915 as correct senior synonym instead of
Full Text Available Los Opiliones de Guinea Ecuatorial y su Región Continental (antiguamente conocida como Río Muni no habían sido previamente estudiados. El material recogido en 1996 ha proporcionado 22 especies, de las que diez pertenecen a la familia Assamiidae y son objeto de este trabajo: Chilon robustus gen. nov., sp. nov. y Mbinia xenophora gen. nov., sp. nov. (Erecinae, Podauchenius longipes sp. nov. y Rhabdopygus funilignorum sp. nov. (Hypoxestinae, Ayenea trimaculata gen. nov., sp. nov., Montalenia forfícula gen. nov., sp. nov. y Niefanga spinosa gen. nov., sp. ov. (Polycoryphinae, Binderia longipes sp. nov., Seuthes inermis sp. nov. y Seuthessus coriscanus sp. nov. (Selencinae. Se considera a Ayenea, Montalenia y Niefanga como un nuevo grupo supragenérico basado en la presencia de un par de orificios en el lado dorsal del pene y un grueso opérculo genital con mecanismo de apertura. Se añaden claves para la identificación de especies de los taxones tratados, así como fotografías a color de ambos sexos (excepto la hembra de B. longipes. En el Parque Nacional de Monte Alén se han encontrado ocho especies; solamente faltan de allí dos selencinos, aparentemente costeros.The Assamiidae (Opiliones: Assamiidae from Río Muni (Equatorial Guinea, with the description of eight new species. The Opiliones from Equatorial Guinea’s Continental Region (formerly Río Muni had not been studied previously. A collection made in 1996 produced 22 species, ten of which belong to the Assamiidae and are studied herein: Chilon robustus and Mbinia xenophora gen. nov., sp. nov. (Erecinae; Podauchenius longipes and Rhabdopygus funilignorum sp. nov. (Hypoxestinae; Ayenea trimaculata gen. nov., sp. nov., Montalenia forficula gen. nov., sp. nov. and Niefanga spinosa gen. nov., sp. nov. (Polycoryphinae; Binderia longipes sp. nov., Seuthes inermis sp. nov. and Seuthessus coriscanus sp. nov. (Selencinae. We consider Ayenea, Montalenia and Niefanga an informal suprageneric
Krizler C. Tanalgo; John Aries G. Tabora
The stable microclimate in caves provides a relatively constant habitat for many bat species in the Philippines, but human encroachment continues to disrupt this habitat and imperil many of the species roosting in the caves. In South central Mindanao, the diversity and conservation status of cave bats remain undocumented and unexplored. We employed mist-netting to capture bats from five different caves within the town of Kabacan, northern Cotabato, Philippines. A total of 14 bat species we...
Krizler C. Tanalgo
Full Text Available The stable microclimate in caves provides a relatively constant habitat for many bat species in the Philippines, but human encroachment continues to disrupt this habitat and imperil many of the species roosting in the caves. In South central Mindanao, the diversity and conservation status of cave bats remain undocumented and unexplored. We employed mist-netting to capture bats from five different caves within the town of Kabacan, northern Cotabato, Philippines. A total of 14 bat species were identified including the Philippine endemics Hipposideros pygmaeus and Ptenochirus jagori and the threatened Megaerops wetmorei. However, despite the declining conservation status of the bats, local disturbance such as bat hunting for bush meat and unregulated tourism are currently taking place in the caves. Large species such as Eonycteris spelaea and Rousettus amplexicaudatus are killed almost every day for food and trade. Therefore, the high species richness, and the presence of endemic and threatened species coupled with the occurrence of anthropogenic disturbances in caves suggests the need for an urgent and effective conservation intervention involving the local government and public community.
Jourdan, Jonas; Bierbach, David; Riesch, Rüdiger; Schießl, Angela; Wigh, Adriana; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Indy, Jeane Rimber; Klaus, Sebastian; Zimmer, Claudia; Plath, Martin
The Cueva del Azufre in Tabasco, Mexico, is a nutrient-rich cave and its inhabitants need to cope with high levels of dissolved hydrogen sulfide and extreme hypoxia. One of the successful colonizers of this cave is the poeciliid fish Poecilia mexicana, which has received considerable attention as a model organism to examine evolutionary adaptations to extreme environmental conditions. Nonetheless, basic ecological data on the endemic cave molly population are still missing; here we aim to provide data on population densities, size class compositions and use of different microhabitats. We found high overall densities in the cave and highest densities at the middle part of the cave with more than 200 individuals per square meter. These sites have lower H2S concentrations compared to the inner parts where most large sulfide sources are located, but they are annually exposed to a religious harvesting ceremony of local Zoque people called La Pesca. We found a marked shift in size/age compositions towards an overabundance of smaller, juvenile fish at those sites. We discuss these findings in relation to several environmental gradients within the cave (i.e., differences in toxicity and lighting conditions), but we also tentatively argue that the annual fish harvest during a religious ceremony (La Pesca) locally diminishes competition (and possibly, cannibalism by large adults), which is followed by a phase of overcompensation of fish densities.
du Preez, Gerhard; Wepener, Victor
Cave ecosystems remain largely unstudied and risk being severely degraded as a result of anthropogenic activities. The Wonderfontein Cave, situated in the extensive gold mining region of the Witwatersrand Basin, is one such system that hosts a population of Clarias gariepinus, which is exposed to the influx of polluted mine water from the Wonderfontein Spruit River. The aim of this study was to investigate the bioaccumulation of metals, as well as relevant biomarkers, in C. gariepinus specimens sampled from the Wonderfontein Cave during high (April 2013) and low (September 2013) flow surveys. Results were also compared to a surface population associated with the Wonderfontein Spruit River. There were temporal differences in metal bioaccumulation patterns and this was attributed to the lack of dilution during the low flow period. Metals associated with acid mine drainage, i.e. Co, Mn and Zn were significantly higher in the Wonderfontein Cave population and were reflected in an increase in oxidative stress biomarkers (catalase, protein carbonyls and superoxide dismutase) and the induction of metallothionein, a biomarker of metal exposure. The surface population was exposed to metals associated with geological weathering processes, i.e. Fe and Al.
A nation wide survey of Chinese houses was conducted to determine the average annual effective dose to Chinese population from exposure to radon and its daughter products. The indoor and outdoor concentrations of radon and its daughters were measured using scintillation flask, two filter and carbon canister methods, as well as modified Tsivoglou methods for Rn daughters. Average Rn concentrations are 26.2Bqm -3 and 13.5Bqm -3 for indoor and outdoor environment, respectively. Potential alpha energy concentration, indoor is 744 x 10 -10 Jm -3 , outdoor is 511 x 10 -10 Jm -3 . Equilibrium Factor of Rn daughters are 0.49 (indoor) and 0.61 (outdoor). Occupancy Factor is 0.77 and 0.23. Using appropriate conversion factors, the annual average effective dose to Chinese population is 0.967 mSv. And also, the indoor Rn concentration and gamma dose rate were surveyed in two rural Provinces: Gansu and Jianxi. The fact was found that lung cancer mortality of population lived in high Rn level dwellings is higher than in control groups. An epidemiological retrospective case-control study is recommended in houses with high Rn level. (author)
Chen, Xuanchen; Feng, Xinqun
Cave building is not only a kind of architecture with unique style, but also a manifestation of Chinese traditional culture. Cave culture is an important part of Chinese traditional culture. The main purpose of this thesis which studies the architectural form of Qikou Cave, is to analyze how the cave building plays a positive role in promoting the development and application of modern resources and in cultural transmission. Based on a large amount of literature material, and taking Qikou Cave as an example, by studying the morphological characteristics of cave building, the paper takes an optimistic outlook on its future development and the sustainable development of the resources. It is expected that the cave culture can be further explored to promote the traditional Chinese culture and to drive the development of modern construction industry and resource conservation.
Full Text Available The following new cavernicolous ground beetle taxa are described from three caves in eastern Serbia: Duvalius (Paraduvalius trifunovici sp. n., from the Mandina Pećina Cave, village of Zlot, near Bor, Kučajske Planine Mts., D. (P. rtanjensis sp. n., from the Golema Porica Pit, Mt. Rtanj, and Glabroduvalius gen. n., G. tupiznicensis sp. n., from the Gornja Lenovačka Pećina Cave, village of Lenovac, near Zaječar, Mt. Tupižnica. The new taxa are easily distinguished from related organisms. All important morphological features have been listed, along with the diagnoses and illustrations of the taxa. The new taxa are relicts and endemics of eastern Serbia and probably belong to old phyletic lineages of Tertiary or even pre-Tertiary origin. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 173038, br. 43001 i br. 43002
Full Text Available Three new troglobitic trechine ground beetle species are described from three caves in eastern and southeastern Serbia: Duvalius (Paraduvalius bogovinae sp. n., from the Bogovinska Pećina Cave, village of Bogovina, Kučajske Planine Mts., near Boljevac, eastern Serbia; D. (P. milutini sp. n., from the Samar cave system, village of Kopajkošara, Mt. Kalafat, near Svrljig, southeastern Serbia, and D. (P. beljanicae sp. n., from the Velika Atula Cave, village of Strmosten, Mt. Beljanica, near Despotovac, eastern Serbia. The new species are easily distinguished from relatives. All important morphological features, along with the diagnoses and illustrations of the new taxa are presented. The new species are relicts and endemics of eastern and southeastern Serbia. They probably belong to old phyletic lineages of Tertiary or even pre-Tertiary origin. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 173038
Full Text Available The most stable isotope of radon, 222Rn, represents the major source of natural radioactivity in confined environments such as mines, caves and houses. In this study, we explored the possible radon-related effects on the genome of Dolichopoda cave crickets (Orthoptera, Rhaphidophoridae sampled in caves with different concentrations of radon. We analyzed specimens from ten populations belonging to two genetically closely related species, D. geniculata and D. laetitiae, and explored the possible association between the radioactivity dose and the level of genetic polymorphism in a specific family of satellite DNA (pDo500 satDNA. Radon concentration in the analyzed caves ranged from 221 to 26,000 Bq/m3. Specimens coming from caves with the highest radon concentration showed also the highest variability estimates in both species, and the increased sequence heterogeneity at pDo500 satDNA level can be explained as an effect of the mutation pressure induced by radon in cave. We discovered a specific category of nuclear DNA, the highly repetitive satellite DNA, where the effects of the exposure at high levels of radon-related ionizing radiation are detectable, suggesting that the satDNA sequences might be a valuable tool to disclose harmful effects also in other organisms exposed to high levels of radon concentration.
Full Text Available Gli studi speleologici presentano un considerevole potenziale per la comprensione dei processi di sviluppo culturale sull'Altopiano del Qoḥayto , e per lo studio dei pattern di mobilità e dei sistemi residenziali dei gruppi pastorali. Questo contributo è basato su un survey archeologico e l'osservazione etnografica dell'organizzazione dello spazio domestico in grotte dell'Altopiano del Qoḥayto, ponendo in particolare evidenza: a l'opposizione tra lo spazio umano e quello destinato agli animali, e b le variazioni all'interno di questi due domini. I risultati mostrano l'esistenza di due tipi di organizzazione di questi spazi: l'una con la zona del goḥo-makādo separata da quella per gli animali, l'altra con la zona del balbala separata dalla seconda.
Kury, Adriano B; Pérez-González, Abel
A series of databases is being prepared to list the valid species of Opiliones worldwide. This paper containing nomenclatural acts is meant to accompany Part 2, which includes the members of the infraorder Grassatores of the superfamilies Samooidea and Zalmoxoidea plus the Grassatores currently not allocated to any family (i.e. Grassatores incertae sedis). The following 32 taxonomic changes are proposed here: (1-3) The Afrotropical genera Hovanoceros Lawrence, 1959, Malgaceros Lawrence, 1959 and Tetebius Roewer, 1949 (all currently in Samoidae) are all newly transferred to Biantidae. (4-5) Microminua soerenseni Soares & Soares, 1954, from Brazil is newly transferred to Tibangara (Gonyleptoidea: Cryptogeobiidae), newly combined as Tibangara soerenseni new comb., new familial allocation for the species. (6-7) The new genus Llaguenia Gen. nov is erected for the South American species Zamora peruviana Roewer, 1956, newly combined as Llaguenia peruviana new comb., and newly placed in Gonyleptoidea: Cranaidae (Prostygninae). (8) Bebedoura Roewer, 1949, known from a single Brazilian species, is transferred from Tricommatinae to Grassatores incertae sedis. (9) Microconomma Roewer, 1915, known from a single Cameroonian species, is transferred from Samoidae to Grassatores incertae sedis. (10) Stygnomimus Roewer, 1927, with two Indomalayan species and hitherto included in the Stygnommatidae, is here formally considered Grassatores incertae sedis. (11) Bichito González-Sponga, 1998, known from a single Venezuelan species, originally described in Phalangodidae: Phalangodinae, and currently in Grassatores incertae sedis is transferred to Samoidae. (12) The Neotropical genus Microminua Sørensen, 1932, currently with two species, is newly transferred from Kimulidae to Samoidae. (13-14) Cornigera González-Sponga, 1987 (currently in Samoidae), is newly considered a junior subjective synonym of Microminua, and its single species is combined under Microminua as Microminua flava
Full Text Available The coral species Leptoseris troglodyta sp. n. (Scleractinia, Agariciidae is described as new to science. It is the first known azooxanthellate shallow-water agariciid and is recorded from the ceilings of caves at 5-35 m depth in West Pacific coral reefs. The corals have monocentric cup-shaped calices. They may become colonial through extramural budding from the basal coenosteum, which may cause adjacent calices to fuse. The size, shape and habitat of L. troglodyta are unique compared to other Leptoseris species, many of which have been recorded from mesophotic depths. The absence of zooxanthellae indicates that it may survive well in darkness, but endolithic algae in some corals indicate that they may be able to get some light. The presence of menianes on the septal sides, which may help to absorb light at greater depths in zooxanthellate corals, have no obvious adaptive relevance in the new species and could have been inherited from ancestral species that perhaps were zooxanthellate. The new species may be azooxanthellate as derived through the loss of zooxanthellae, which would be a reversal in Leptoseris phylogeny.
Full Text Available Abstract Background The amphipod crustacean Palmorchestia hypogaea occurs only in La Palma (Canary Islands and is one of the few terrestrial amphipods in the world that have adapted to a strictly troglobitic life in volcanic cave habitats. A surface-dwelling closely related species (Palmorchestia epigaea lives in the humid laurel forest on the same island. Previous studies have suggested that an ancestral littoral Orchestia species colonized the humid forests of La Palma and that subsequent drought episodes in the Canaries reduced the distribution of P. epigaea favouring the colonization of lava tubes through an adaptive shift. This was followed by dispersal via the hypogean crevicular system. Results P. hypogaea and P. epigaea did not form reciprocally monophyletic mitochondrial DNA clades. They showed geographically highly structured and genetically divergent populations with current gene flow limited to geographically close surface locations. Coalescence times using Bayesian estimations assuming a non-correlated relaxed clock with a normal prior distribution of the age of La Palma, together with the lack of association of habitat type with ancestral and recent haplotypes, suggest that their adaptation to cave life is relatively ancient. Conclusion The data gathered here provide evidence for multiple invasions of the volcanic cave systems that have acted as refuges. A re-evaluation of the taxonomic status of the extant species of Palmorchestia is needed, as the division of the two species by habitat and ecology is unnatural. The information obtained here, and that from previous studies on hypogean fauna, shows the importance of factors such as the uncoupling of morphological and genetic evolution, the role of climatic change and regressive evolution as key processes in leading to subterranean biodiversity.
Strauß, Johannes; Stritih, Nataša
Animals' adaptations to cave habitats generally include elaboration of extraoptic senses, and in insects the receptor structures located on the legs are supposed to become more prominent in response to constant darkness. The receptors for detecting substrate vibrations are often highly sensitive scolopidial sensilla localized within the legs or the body. For troglobitic insects the evolutionary changes in vibroreceptor organs have not been studied. Since rock is an extremely unfavorable medium for vibration transmission, selection on vibration receptors may be weakened in caves, and these sensory organs may undergo regressive evolution. We investigated the anatomy of the most elaborate internal vibration detection system in orthopteroid insects, the scolopidial subgenual organ complex in the cave cricket Dolichopoda araneiformis (Orthoptera: Ensifera: Rhaphidophoridae). This is a suitable model species which shows high levels of adaptation to cave life in terms of both phenotypic and life cycle characteristics. We compared our data with data on the anatomy and physiology of the subgenual organ complex from the related troglophilic species Troglophilus neglectus. In D. araneiformis, the subgenual organ complex contains three scolopidial organs: the subgenual organ, the intermediate organ, and the accessory organ. The presence of individual organs and their innervation pattern are identical to those found in T. neglectus, while the subgenual organ and the accessory organ of D. araneiformis contain about 50% fewer scolopidial sensilla than in T. neglectus. This suggests neuronal regression of these organs in D. araneiformis, which may reflect a relaxed selection pressure for vibration detection in caves. At the same time, a high level of overall neuroanatomical conservation of the intermediate organ in this species suggests persistence of the selection pressure maintaining this particular organ. While regressive evolution of chordotonal organs has been documented for insect auditory organs, this study shows for the first time that internal vibroreceptors can also be affected. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Suwannapoom, Chatmongkon; Sumontha, Montri; Tunprasert, Jitthep; Ruangsuwan, Thiti; Pawangkhanant, Parinya; Korost, Dmitriy V; Poyarkov, Nikolay A
We report on a discovery of Siamophryne troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov., a new troglophilous genus and species of microhylid frog from a limestone cave in the tropical forests of western Thailand. To assess its phylogenetic relationships we studied the 12S rRNA-16S rRNA mtDNA fragment with final alignment comprising up to 2,591 bp for 56 microhylid species. Morphological characterization of the new genus is based on examination of external morphology and analysis of osteological characteristics using microCT-scanning. Phylogenetic analyses place the new genus into the mainly Australasian subfamily Asterophryinae as a sister taxon to the genus Gastrophrynoides , the only member of the subfamily known from Sundaland. The new genus markedly differs from all other Asterophryinae members by a number of diagnostic morphological characters and demonstrates significant mtDNA sequence divergence. We provide a preliminary description of a tadpole of the new genus. Thus, it represents the only asterophryine taxon with documented free-living larval stage and troglophilous life style. Our work demonstrates that S. troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov. represents an old lineage of the initial radiation of Asterophryinae which took place in the mainland Southeast Asia. Our results strongly support the "out of Indo-Eurasia" biogeographic scenario for this group of frogs. To date, the new frog is only known from a single limestone cave system in Sai Yok District of Kanchanaburi Province of Thailand; its habitat is affected by illegal bat guano mining and other human activities. As such, S. troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov. is likely to be at high risk of habitat loss. Considering high ecological specialization and a small known range of the new taxon, we propose a IUCN Red List status of endangered for it.
Erika L.S. Taylor
Full Text Available Caves are stable environments that favour the development of several microorganisms. The aspergilli represent a large number of species isolated from caves including strains capable of causing serious invasive opportunistic infections in humans. Considering that caves may harbour resistant strains to many antibiotics, investigation on the response of opportunistic aspergilli, isolated from pristine and tourist caves to antifungal agents and the mechanisms involved in resistance might be clinically relevant. A total of 32 strains of the species Aspergillus candidus, A. flavus, A. fumigatus, A. niger, A. tamarii, and A. terreus were isolated from caves in the iron quadrangle in Brazil. The strains were tested for their susceptibility to amphotericin B (AMB, itraconazole, voriconazole and terbinafine. One strain was analysed for the mechanism involved in the AMB-resistance, i.e., ergosterol content, lipid peroxidation and enzymatic activity of the antioxidant system. Terbinafine minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs ranged between 0.003 and 1.0 µg/mL; voriconazole MICs ranged between 2.0 and >16.0 µg/mL; itraconazole MICs ranged between 0.25 and 8.0 µg/mL and amphotericin B MICs ranged between 0.03 and 4.0 µg/mL. The AMB-resistant strain of A. flavus was detected with MIC value of 4 µg/mL. Resistance to AMB relied on higher ergosterol levels and increased enzymatic activity of the peroxidase and superoxide-dismutase, with lower lipid peroxidation. These results enhance the knowledge of natural antifungal resistance in the subterranean ecosystem, and broaden the knowledge about the subterranean microbiota.
Reynolds, Hannah T; Barton, Hazel A
White-nose Syndrome (WNS) is an emerging infectious mycosis that has impacted multiple species of North American bats since its initial discovery in 2006, yet the physiology of the causal agent, the psychrophilic fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans ( = Geomyces destructans), is not well understood. We investigated the ability of P. destructans to secrete enzymes that could permit environmental growth or affect pathogenesis and compared enzyme activity across several Pseudogymnoascus species isolated from both hibernating bats and cave sediments. We found that P. destructans produced enzymes that could be beneficial in either a pathogenic or saprotrophic context, such as lipases, hemolysins, and urease, as well as chitinase and cellulases, which could aid in saprotrophic growth. The WNS pathogen showed significantly lower activity for urease and endoglucanase compared to con-generic species (Pseudogymnoascus), which may indicate a shift in selective pressure to the detriment of P. destructans' saprotrophic ability. Based on the positive function of multiple saprotrophic enzymes, the causal agent of White-nose Syndrome shows potential for environmental growth on a variety of substrates found in caves, albeit at a reduced level compared to environmental strains. Our data suggest that if P. destructans emerged as an opportunistic infection from an environmental source, co-evolution with its host may have led to a reduced capacity for saprotrophic growth.
Hannah T Reynolds
Full Text Available White-nose Syndrome (WNS is an emerging infectious mycosis that has impacted multiple species of North American bats since its initial discovery in 2006, yet the physiology of the causal agent, the psychrophilic fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans ( = Geomyces destructans, is not well understood. We investigated the ability of P. destructans to secrete enzymes that could permit environmental growth or affect pathogenesis and compared enzyme activity across several Pseudogymnoascus species isolated from both hibernating bats and cave sediments. We found that P. destructans produced enzymes that could be beneficial in either a pathogenic or saprotrophic context, such as lipases, hemolysins, and urease, as well as chitinase and cellulases, which could aid in saprotrophic growth. The WNS pathogen showed significantly lower activity for urease and endoglucanase compared to con-generic species (Pseudogymnoascus, which may indicate a shift in selective pressure to the detriment of P. destructans' saprotrophic ability. Based on the positive function of multiple saprotrophic enzymes, the causal agent of White-nose Syndrome shows potential for environmental growth on a variety of substrates found in caves, albeit at a reduced level compared to environmental strains. Our data suggest that if P. destructans emerged as an opportunistic infection from an environmental source, co-evolution with its host may have led to a reduced capacity for saprotrophic growth.
Reynolds, Hannah T.; Barton, Hazel A.
White-nose Syndrome (WNS) is an emerging infectious mycosis that has impacted multiple species of North American bats since its initial discovery in 2006, yet the physiology of the causal agent, the psychrophilic fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans ( = Geomyces destructans), is not well understood. We investigated the ability of P. destructans to secrete enzymes that could permit environmental growth or affect pathogenesis and compared enzyme activity across several Pseudogymnoascus species i...
Full Text Available We report on a discovery of Siamophryne troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov., a new troglophilous genus and species of microhylid frog from a limestone cave in the tropical forests of western Thailand. To assess its phylogenetic relationships we studied the 12S rRNA–16S rRNA mtDNA fragment with final alignment comprising up to 2,591 bp for 56 microhylid species. Morphological characterization of the new genus is based on examination of external morphology and analysis of osteological characteristics using microCT-scanning. Phylogenetic analyses place the new genus into the mainly Australasian subfamily Asterophryinae as a sister taxon to the genus Gastrophrynoides, the only member of the subfamily known from Sundaland. The new genus markedly differs from all other Asterophryinae members by a number of diagnostic morphological characters and demonstrates significant mtDNA sequence divergence. We provide a preliminary description of a tadpole of the new genus. Thus, it represents the only asterophryine taxon with documented free-living larval stage and troglophilous life style. Our work demonstrates that S. troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov. represents an old lineage of the initial radiation of Asterophryinae which took place in the mainland Southeast Asia. Our results strongly support the “out of Indo-Eurasia” biogeographic scenario for this group of frogs. To date, the new frog is only known from a single limestone cave system in Sai Yok District of Kanchanaburi Province of Thailand; its habitat is affected by illegal bat guano mining and other human activities. As such, S. troglodytes Gen. et sp. nov. is likely to be at high risk of habitat loss. Considering high ecological specialization and a small known range of the new taxon, we propose a IUCN Red List status of endangered for it.
Full Text Available A new species of the troglobitic spider genus Typhlonesticus is described from specimens found in Keloğlan Cave (Denizli Province, Dodurgalar Town, Turkey. Typhlonesticus gocmeni sp. n. is described on the basis of both sexes; and its phylogenetic relationships with closely related European genera and species are discussed based on morphological and molecular data (the cox1, rrnL and H3 genes. Three new combinations are proposed: Typhlonesticus idriacus (Roewer, 1931, comb. n., Typhlonesticus morisii (Brignoli, 1975 comb. n. and Typhlonesticus obcaecatus (Simon, 1907, comb. n. all ex. Nesticus.
P. S. Reboleira, Ana Sofia; Malek Hosseini, M.J.; Sadeghi, S.
face of the anterior gonopod coxites first point distad instead of basad or basad-posteriad as in most other flagelliferous Cambalidea (and Julida), then traverse a groove on the mesal surface of the anterior gonopod coxites, making a full (360°) loop. The same feature is also illustrated for the first...
Ana Sofia P.S. Reboleira
Full Text Available Chiraziulus is a highly disjunct, hitherto monotypic genus of cambalid millipedes, geographically isolated in Iran by more than 7000 km from its presumed closest relatives in East Asia and North America. Recent fieldwork in caves of Iran has provided several specimens of this genus, allowing the description of Chiraziulus troglopersicus sp. nov. The intraspecific variability of the type species, C. kaiseri Mauriès, 1983, is illustrated with scanning electron micrographs. Chiraziulus is characterized by exceedingly long microtrichose gonopod flagella which from their insertion points on the posterior face of the anterior gonopod coxites first point distad instead of basad or basad-posteriad as in most other flagelliferous Cambalidea (and Julida, then traverse a groove on the mesal surface of the anterior gonopod coxites, making a full (360° loop. The same feature is also illustrated for the first time in the genus Cambala. The patterns and prevalence of the infection with a species of ectoparasitic fungus of the genus Rickia (order Laboulbeniales in the type material of C. kaiseri is described. An updated review of the cave-adapted fauna of Iran is given.
Shallow-water and not deep-sea as most plausible origin for cave-dwelling Paramisophria species (Copepoda: Calanoida: Arietellidae), with description of three new species from Mediterranean bathyal hyperbenthos and littoral caves
Jaume, Damià; Cartes, Joan E.; Boxshall, Geoffrey A.
Japan (Tanaka, 1967; Ohtsuka, 1985; Ohtsuka & Mitsuzumi, 1990; Ohtsuka et al., 1991), Australia (McKinnon & Kimmerer, 1985), and New Zealand (Othman & Greenwood, 1992). Records of species far from their ordinary ranges, such as those of Paramisophria cluthae T. Scott, 1897 from the Mediterranean
Full Text Available Trogulus martensi Chemini, 1983, formerly thought to be endemic in northern Italy, is recorded from several places near Basle (first records in Switzerland and France. The species is close to T. galasensis Avram, 1971. Important differences to the syntopic T. closanicus Avram, 1971 (first published record in Fance and the sympatric T. nepaeformis (Scopoli, 1763 are shown and discussed. Additional biometric, autecological and phenological data of Trogulus martensi are presented.
Dunlop, Jason A.; Selden, Paul A.; Giribet, Gonzalo
A unique specimen of the fossil harvestman Halitherses grimaldii Giribet and Dunlop, 2005 (Arachnida: Opiliones) from the Cretaceous (ca. 99 Ma) Burmese amber of Myanmar reveals a fully extended penis. This is the first record of a male copulatory organ of this nature preserved in amber and is of special importance due to the age of the deposit. The penis has a slender, distally flattened truncus, a spatulate heart-shaped glans and a short distal stylus, twisted at the tip. In living harvestmen, the penis yields crucial characters for their systematics. Male genital morphology in H. grimaldii appears to be unique among the wider Dyspnoi clade to which this fossil belongs. The large eyes in the fossil differ markedly from other members of the subfamily Ortholasmatinae to which H. grimaldii was originally referred. Based on recent data, it has been argued that large eyes may be plesiomorphic for Palpatores (i.e. the suborders Eupnoi and Dyspnoi), potentially rendering this character plesiomorphic for the fossil too. Thus, the unique structure of the penis seen here, and the probable lack of diaphanous teeth, present in all other extant non-acropsopilionid Dyspnoi, suggest that H. grimaldii represents a new, extinct family of large-eyed dyspnoid harvestmen, Halithersidae fam. nov.; a higher taxon in amber diagnosed here on both somatic and genital characters.
Hammen, van der L.
A preliminary study is made of the distribution of Araneida and Opilionida (Chelicerata) in a National Park in The Netherlands. Special attention is paid to the influence of vegetation structure on the distribution of the spiders.
Chromosome complement and meiosis of Holmbergiana weyenberghii (Opiliones: Sclerosomatidae: Gagrellinae from Argentina Complemento cromosómico y meiosis de Holmbergiana weyenberghii (Opiliones: Sclerosomatidae: Gagrellinae de Argentina
Sergio G. Rodríguez Gil
Full Text Available The cytogenetical analysis of the harvestman Holmbergiana weyenberghii (Holmberg (Eupnoi, Sclerosomatidae, Gagrellinae from Argentina is reported for the first time. The complement of males is composed of 18 chromosomes. In meiosis there are nine homomorphic bivalents: one large, five medium-sized and three small. The chromosome number of H. weyenberghii is within the range of diploid numbers of the subfamily Gagrellinae Thorell, which shows the lowest chromosome numbers among the sclerosomatids.Se analiza citogenéticamente, por primera vez, una especie de opilión proveniente de Argentina: Holmbergiana weyenberghii (Holmberg (Eupnoi, Sclerosomatidae, Gagrellinae. Los machos tienen un complemento cromosómico compuesto por 18 cromosomas. En meiosis, hay nueve bivalentes homomórficos: uno mayor, cinco medianos y tres menores. El número cromosómico de H. weyenberghii se encuentra dentro del rango de números diploides de los Gagrellinae Thorell; esta subfamilia presenta los números cromosómicos más bajos de Sclerosomatidae.
Full Text Available The Mehedinţi Plateau represents an area highly marked by the intensity of the karst processes and by the diversity of the exokarst and endokarst features. The analyzed area includes two parallel limestone bars, developed on the Carpathian structures direction (NNE-SSW. The geological and geomorphological research, guided by a working protocol similar to that of the EPIK method, highlighted the role played by the lithology, structure, tectonics, epikarst and protective cover, related to the infiltration conditions, flow parameters and impact area of a potential contamination event; also, we carried on microtectonic studies on the Bulba Valley, Peşterii Hill, Podul Natural Cave and Bulba Cave. In addition to the results obtained following the EPIK method protocol, we bring forward data concerning the water quality, performing hydrogeochemical analyses on water samples collected from the main sources in the region. Our research has been focused on TDS, on cations (Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, K+, NH4+ and on anions (HCO3-, Cl-. We conclude by modelling the cumulative abundance and the species richness of the harvestmen (Opiliones in the studied area, under different degrees of human impact on habitats
Burns, Mercedes; Starrett, James; Derkarabetian, Shahan; Richart, Casey H; Cabrero, Allan; Hedin, Marshal
Next-generation sequencing technologies now allow researchers of non-model systems to perform genome-based studies without the requirement of a (often unavailable) closely related genomic reference. We evaluated the role of restriction endonuclease (RE) selection in double-digest restriction-site-associated DNA sequencing (ddRADseq) by generating reduced representation genome-wide data using four different RE combinations. Our expectation was that RE selections targeting longer, more complex restriction sites would recover fewer loci than RE with shorter, less complex sites. We sequenced a diverse sample of non-model arachnids, including five congeneric pairs of harvestmen (Opiliones) and four pairs of spiders (Araneae). Sample pairs consisted of either conspecifics or closely related congeneric taxa, and in total 26 sample pair analyses were tested. Sequence demultiplexing, read clustering and variant calling were performed in the pyRAD program. The 6-base pair cutter EcoRI combined with methylated site-specific 4-base pair cutter MspI produced, on average, the greatest numbers of intra-individual loci and shared loci per sample pair. As expected, the number of shared loci recovered for a sample pair covaried with the degree of genetic divergence, estimated with cytochrome oxidase I sequences, although this relationship was non-linear. Our comparative results will prove useful in guiding protocol selection for ddRADseq experiments on many arachnid taxa where reference genomes, even from closely related species, are unavailable. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Pinto-Da-Rocha, Ricardo; Hara, Marcos Ryotaro
Praelibitia Roewer, 1956 and its type species, Praelibitia titicaca Roewer, 1956, are respectively synonymized with Platygyndes Roewer, 1943 and its type species Platygyndes titicaca Roewer, 1943, and furthermore the genus is transferred from the Gonyleptidae to the Cosmetidae. On the basis of domed and unarmed ocularium, increased number of granules on scutal areas, unarmed dorsal scutum and general body shape, Platygyndes seems to be closely related to Moselabius Roewer, 1956 and Caracarana Roewer, 1956. External morphological characters that are useful to revealing relationships among cosmetid genera are discussed.
Full Text Available Praelibitia Roewer, 1956 and its type species, Praelibitia titicaca Roewer, 1956, are respectively synonymized with Platygyndes Roewer, 1943 and its type species Platygyndes titicaca Roewer, 1943, and furthermore the genus is transferred from the Gonyleptidae to the Cosmetidae. On the basis of domed and unarmed ocularium, increased number of granules on scutal areas, unarmed dorsal scutum and general body shape, Platygyndes seems to be closely related to Moselabius Roewer, 1956 and Caracarana Roewer, 1956. External morphological characters that are useful to revealing relationships among cosmetid genera are discussed.
Sergio G. Rodríguez Gil
Full Text Available Se analiza citogenéticamente, por primera vez, una especie de opilión proveniente de Argentina: Holmbergiana weyenberghii (Holmberg (Eupnoi, Sclerosomatidae, Gagrellinae. Los machos tienen un complemento cromosómico compuesto por 18 cromosomas. En meiosis, hay nueve bivalentes homomórficos: uno mayor, cinco medianos y tres menores. El número cromosómico de H. weyenberghii se encuentra dentro del rango de números diploides de los Gagrellinae Thorell; esta subfamilia presenta los números cromosómicos más bajos de Sclerosomatidae.
Marília Pessoa Silva
Full Text Available Fonckia Roewer, 1913 is revised and two new species are described in it: Fonckia contulmo sp. nov., from Monumento Nacional Contulmo, Araucanía, Chile, diagnosed mainly by the enlarged tubercles on the lateral margins of the dorsal scutum, between the median region of scutal area II and the posterior margin of the scutal area III; and Fonckia sosia sp. nov., from Parque Nacional Conguillio, Malleco, Chile, distinguished mainly by the absence of a dorso-basal apophysis on femur IV of the male and a spiniform, enlarged retroapical tubercle on tibia IV of the male. We propose the generic synonymy of Diconospelta Canals, 1934 under Fonckia Roewer, 1913, and the specific synonymy of D. vazferreirae Mello-Leitão, 1946 under F. processigera (Sørensen, 1902. We also propose the new combination F. gallardoi (Canals, 1934 comb. nov. As a consequence, the genus is henceforth composed of four species. We present an identification key for the species of Fonckia, as well as diagnoses and a discussion of the Chilean Pachylinae.
Roč. 1325, - (2006), s. 147-156 ISSN 1175-5326 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/03/1219 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Umbopilio martensi * new species * Asia Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.612, year: 2006
Full Text Available For the last 60 years, the mite-harvestman Cyphophthalmus duricorius Joseph, 1868, a soil-dwelling sironid, has been considered to be the only representative of the opilionid suborder Cyphophthalmi in Austria. However, novel data from recent collections confirm the presence of at least two further Austrian cyphophthalmid species. (1 Siro cf. crassus Novak & Giribet, 2006 occurs in at least one location in SW Styria near the Slovenian border and hence represents a member of a second genus of Austrian sironids. (2 A further morphologically distinct sironid (“Sironidae gen. et sp. nov.?” – so far undescribed and systematically not placed in detail – was collected in the borderland between Styria and Carinthia. All three species can be found in a small area of a few square-kilometers; although no syntopic occurrence was recorded.
There are many questions regarding what influences the emergence of new species. Firstly and above all, is the appearance of differences within a certain specie, where a certain part is isolated from the group and continues its own evolution. One of these differences appear between the surface- and cave-dwelling Asellus aquaticus, as the ability to hold on to their surface. The discovery of these differences was carried out using a method of experiment, namely on the cave-dwelling Asellus ...
Kramer, David C.
Describes some of the characteristics of the common harvestmen, or daddy longlegs, and the true spider. Provides information on harvestmen's habitats and life cycles and includes tips on housing and observing these organisms in science classrooms. (TW)
Cruz-López, Jesús A; Francke, Oscar F
Parainitraceras pickardcanibridgei sp. nov. and Paramitraceras tzotzil sp. nov. from Chiapas, Mexico are described based on specimens previously determined as Paramitraceras granulatum Pickard-Cambridge, 1905 by Goodnight and Goodnight. The male genitalia of the new species and P. granulatum are illustrated with scanning electronic micrographs (SEMs) or drawings derived from them. The importance of the ocular tubercle, cheliceral dentition and sexual dimorphism, pedipalpal armature and male genitalia as taxonomic characters within the genus is discussed as well as differences and similarities between Paramitraceras Pickard-Cambridge, 1905 and its most similar genus, Sbordonia Šilhavý, 1977.
Jones, T H; Meinwald, J; Hicks, K; Eisner, T
Analyses of the chief volatile constituents of the defensive secretions of three oplionids were carried out. Leiobunum nigripalpi produces three closely related C7 compounds: E-4-methyl-4-hexen-3-one(I), 4-methylhexan-3-one(II), and 4-methylhexan-3-ol(III), along with E-4-methyl-4-hepten-3-one(IV), E,E-2,4-dimethylhexa-2,4-dienal(IX), and a minor, unidentified component. L. leiopenis secretion contains E-4-methyl-4-hepten-3-one(IV), 4-methylheptan-3-one(V), E,E-2,4-dimethylhexa-2,4-dien-1-ol(VII), and E,E-2,4-dimethylhepta-2,4-dien-1-ol(VIII). L. calcar yields chiefly E-4,6-dimethyl-6-octen-3-one(VI) and E,E-2,4-dimethylhexa-2,4-dien-1-ol(VII). Six of these compounds are new natural products. The structures of these compounds, which can be regarded either as polyketide-derived or as modified isoprenoids, raise interesting biosynthetic questions.
Full Text Available A new species of harvestman, Paecilaema batman, from Brazilian limestone caves of the state of Goiás, is described, and a remarkable intraspecific color patch variation is discussed. Paecilaema batman sp. nov. differs from other species of the genus by the following combination of features: chelicera similar in both sexes; prosoma without color patches; typical color patches on area I; and area III with two high spines. The new species is considered troglophilous.
Giribet, Gonzalo; Sharma, Prashant P.; Benavides, Ligia R.
We investigate the phylogeny, biogeography, time of origin and diversification, ancestral area reconstruction and large-scale distributional patterns of an ancient group of arachnids, the harvestman suborder Cyphophthalmi. Analysis of molecular and morphological data allow us to propose a new......; Boreophthalmi includes Stylocellidae and Sironidae, the latter family of questionable monophyly. The internal resolution of each family is discussed and traced back to its geological time origin, as well as to its original landmass, using methods for estimating divergence times and ancestral area reconstruction....... The origin of Cyphophthalmi can be traced back to the Carboniferous, whereas the diversification time of most families ranges between the Carboniferous and the Jurassic, with the exception of Troglosironidae, whose current diversity originates in the Cretaceous/Tertiary. Ancestral area reconstruction...
Full Text Available With the nomination of the ‘Cave Animal of the Year’ the Society of German Cave and Karst Explorers calls public and authorities’ attention to the understudied biodiversity of subterranean ecosystems. Here the Cave Animal of the Year 2016, Amilenus aurantiacus (Simon, 1881, is presented. It is the first time that a harvestman has been chosen. Ist ecology, habitat and morphology are described. New records from Hesse, Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia are listed and discussed.
Zhang Wei; Wan Yihong; Chen Hongxiao; Shang Bin
This paper reports an investigated result of residential radon concentration in Jingchuan County, Gansu Province, during May 2004 to November 2006. Alpha track detectors were used to measure radon level. Construction types of house and percentages of residents living in the county were also investigated through questionnaires. The result showed that the mean radon concentration in 62 investigated houses was 96.2 Bq·m -3 . The radon concentration in cave dwelling was the highest among all type of dwellings. The average level in cave dwelling is 110.2 Bq·m -3 , which was significantly higher than the national mean value published in literatures, and exceed the WHO recommended value of 100 Bq·m -3 . A considerable number of rural residents are living in cave dwellings in Jingchuan County. Attention should be paid to the radon problem and some proper protection measures taken. (authors)
Jones, R. Kent
The Esperanto language was consciously designed as a coherent system, in contrast to the 3000 conventional languages originated by people's cave-dwelling ancestors. The systematic nature of Esperanto makes it ideal as an instructional tool. The amorphous nature of English makes its serious use very difficult for students. Even though they learn to…
Pinto-da-Rocha, Ricardo; da Fonseca-Ferreira, Rafael; Bichuette, Maria Elina
Abstract A new species of troglobitic harvestman, Iandumoema smeagol sp. n., is described from Toca do Geraldo, Monjolos municipality, Minas Gerais state, Brazil. Iandumoema smeagol sp. n. is distinguished from the other two species of the genus by four exclusive characteristics – dorsal scutum areas with conspicuous tubercles, enlarged retrolateral spiniform tubercle on the distal third of femur IV, eyes absent and the penial ventral process slender and of approximately the same length of the stylus. The species is the most highly modified in the genus and its distribution is restricted only to caves in that particular area of Minas Gerais state. The type locality is not inside a legally protected area, and there are anthropogenic impacts in its surroundings. Therefore, Iandumoema smeagol sp. n. is vulnerable and it must be considered in future conservation projects. PMID:26798238
Full Text Available For 40 years Ischyropsalis hellwigi hellwigi has been known in Baden-Württemberg. Whereas most previous records rely only on single specimens, numerous individuals were recorded during a study in three forest areas in northern Black Forest and southern Odenwald. A total of 37 specimen were caught by pitfall trapping in the natural forest "Wilder See" (an old forest without human impact, in a forest with human impact near "Hornisgrinde", which is similar in terms of exposition, temperature and structure, and in a succession area after a forest fire near Heidelberg. According to these localities, Ischyropsalis hellwigi hellwigi seems to have a broader tolerance to climatic factors than previously thought. All three localities differ widely in terms of forest type, ground vegetation, temperature and light exposure. Whether it is appropriate to conclude the relevant microhabitat conditions for this species from the characteristics of the trapping localities is discussed. The phenology of Ischyropsalis hellwigi hellwigi is described from two areas in northern Black Forest and southern Odenwald. The main period of activity at both localities was August, similar to records from Northwest Germany. From theses results it is concluded that therecently introduced term "natural stage indicator" might be inappropriate for Ischyropsalis hellwigi hellwigi. The species is not restsricted to forests with fallen wood on the surface, as long other habitat elements provide a hiding place with balances microclimate conditions. In order to clarify the distribution of Ischyropsalis hellwigi hellwigi in Germany, the authors request information about new records of this species.
Tourinho, Ana Lúcia; Pinto-da-Rocha, Ricardo; Bragagnolo, Cibele
Three new Brazilian species of Holcobunus Roewer, 1910 are described, thus increasing the total number of species in the genus to five: Holcobunus bicornutus Mello-Leitão, 1940, H. nigripalpis Roewer, 1910, Holcobunus dissimilis sp. nov. (type locality: Espírito Santo, Santa Teresa, Reserva Biologia Augusto Ruschi), Holcobunus ibitirama sp. nov. (type locality: Espírito Santo, Ibitirama, Santa Marta, close to Parque Nacional Caparaó), and Holcobunus uaisoh sp. nov. (type locality: Minas Gerais, Fervedouro, Parque Estadual Serra do Brigadeiro). A new record for Holcobunus nigripalpis Roewer, 1910 from Minas Gerais is also provided and the morphological variation in both penis and somatic morphology in the genus are presented and discussed. These observations enhance our understanding of both the diversity and distribution of Holcobunus.
Sharma, P. P.; Santiago, M. A.; Kriebel, R.; Lipps, S. M.; Buenavente, P. A. C.; Diesmos, A. C.; Janda, Milan; Boyer, S. L.; Clouse, R. M.; Wheeler, W. C.
Roč. 106, JAN 01 (2017), s. 164-173 ISSN 1055-7903 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : grassatores * morphology * comparative methods Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 4.419, year: 2016 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1055790316302445
As 10 especies nominais de Promitobates foram utilizadas na analise cladistica da subfamilia Mitobatinae. A especie P. ornatus (Mello-Leitao, 1922), amplamente distribuida e polimorfica, foi decomposta em quatro unidades monomorficas e sua taxonomia testada durante a analise cladistica. Outras duas especies que apresentaram polimorfismos (P. hatschbachi H. Soares, 1945 e P. viridigranulatus Soares & Soares, 1946) tambem foram separadas em duas unidades distintas. A analise cladistica foi efet...
Conchita A. Pinzón-M.
Full Text Available The genus Platymessa Mello-Leitão, 1941 is represented by two species in the Andes of Colombia: P. h-inscriptum Mello-Leitão, 1941 and P. ectroxantha Mello-Leitão, 1941. Platymessa victoriae Pinzón-M. & Townsend, sp. n. is described on the basis of somatic morphological characters and the structure of the penis. The placement of this new species in the genus Platymessa is based upon multiple characters including the outline of dorsal scutum, the presence of a blunt spine on coxa IV, having short and strong legs with femora III and IV having five longitudinal rows of small tubercles, the shape of the basitarsomeres of male leg I, the distribution and relative sizes of the marginal setae on the ventral plate of the penis, and the morphology of the chelicerae and cheliceral sockets. In contrast to other members of the genus, P. victoriae has a pair of triangular tubercles on scutal area III, lacks paired paramedian tubercles on scutal area V, and does not have a ladder mask color pattern on the dorsal scutum. The description of this species expands the distribution of the genus to north of the Oriental Cordillera in the Cesar Department of Colombia.
Full Text Available A checklist of german arachnids (spiders, harvestmen, pseudoscorpions is presented here for the first time. 956 species of spiders, 45 species of harvestmen and 45 species of pseudoscorpions are listed. Important junior synonyms are given. References are cited for the species established in Germany.
First record of Stygnidae for the state of Espírito Santo and description of a new Protimesius (Arachnida: Opiliones: Laniatores Primeiro registro de Stygnidae para o estado do Espírito Santo e descrição de um novo Protimesius (Arachnida: Opiliones: Laniatores
Adriano B. Kury
Full Text Available Protimesius osvaldoi sp. nov. is described from the Reserva Biológica de Sooretama, state of Espírito Santo, southeastern Brazil, being the first record of Stygnidae from this State and the southernmost record of the family in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest (hitherto, the family was recorded down to Bahia only, extending in 210 km south of the previously known distribution. This is a large species, with armature of leg IV very reduced and penial morphology differing from the closest counterparts mainly in the ventral plate, which recedes deeply at the lateral borders and has the distal margin curved ventrally and by the presence of two small intermediate setae. Protimesius Roewer, 1913 consisted hitherto of 17 species, recorded from northern/northeastern Brazil and Amazonia of adjacent countries. A key is given for the 17 species of Protimesius for which males are known.Protimesius osvaldoi sp. nov. é descrita da Reserva Biológica de Sooretama, Espírito Santo, sudeste do Brasil, sendo considerado o primeiro registro de Stygnidae para este Estado (até então a distribuição registrada para a família se estendia apenas até a Bahia e o registro mais ao sul na Floresta Atlântica, aumentando em 210 km ao sul a distribuição do grupo. Protomesius osvaldoi é uma espécie de tamanho grande, com armação reduzida na perna IV e placa ventral. Protimesius possui 17 espécies, registradas no norte e nordeste do Brasil e Região Amazônica. É apresentada uma chave para as 17 espécies de Protimesius com machos conhecidos.
H. Zabihi; T. Larimian; H. Poorani
Extended abstract1-IntroductionSafety and security have been significant issues throughout history, from early prehistoric cave-dwelling societies to medieval and modern cities (P. Cozens, 2008). Crime is a part of our way of living. It is tied to the physical distribution of people and objects, to the routine activity patterns of daily life, and to the ways in which people perceive and use information about the environment (Brantingham & Brantingham, 1993). Statistics show that there is a me...
Cassoti, John Salsig, Noellette (Sam) Conway, Hagan Schempf, Ken Gartner, Steve Bollens, Tom DiChristina and Eric Zettler are hereby thanked. I would...his wife Amy. Jake and Anna Maria Peirson deserve a special grazie for trying to keep me in line (with mixed success). I also thank Eric Fajer. Debbie...the reproductive period the females become active at night. In the cave-dwelling loach Oreonectus evezardi, a circadian rhythm as well as a
Hastriter,Michael; Miller,Kelly; Svenson,Gavin; Whiting,Michael F.; Whiting,Michael
Abstract Lagaropsylla signata (Wahlgren, 1903), previously known only from the Island of Java, Indonesia is redescribed and reported for the first time in Deer Cave, Gunung Mulu National Park, Sarawak, Malaysia (west coast of Borneo). Many were found clinging to the earwig Arixenia esau Jordan, 1909. A similar account of a phoretic flea ( Lagaropsylla turba Smit, 1958) on the same species of cave-dwelling earwig has been reported in peninsular Malaysia in a well-documented association with th...
Thais Giovannini Pellegrini
Full Text Available Lapa Nova is a dolomitic cave about 4.5 km long located in northwestern Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The cave experiences intense tourism, concentrated over a single period of the year, during the Feast of Our Lady of Lapa. In order to evaluate the impacts felt by the invertebrate community from this tourism, a new methodology was proposed. Four types of areas (intense visitation area, outlying visitation areas, moderate visitation areas and no-visitation areas were sampled for invertebrates. There was one sampling prior and another on the last day of the 128th feast, to evaluate the effects of visitation on cave-dwelling invertebrates. Results show that invertebrate populations residing in more intensely visited areas of the cave undergo changes in distribution following the event. As a consequence of tourism, invertebrates shift to outlying locations from the visited area, which serve as refuges to the communities. Apparently, the fact that there are places inside Lapa Nova inaccessible to tourists reduces the impact suffered by the invertebrate community, as those sites serve as refuges for cave-dwelling organisms during the pilgrimage. A proper management plan was devised for the tourism/religious use of the cave. It consists basically of delimiting marked pathways for tourists, allowing invertebrates to seek shelter at locations outside visited areas and keeping no-visitation areas off-limits to tourism based on the results of the visitation effects on cave-dwelling invertebrates.
Geographical Variation in Echolocation Call and Body Size of the Okinawan Least Horseshoe Bat, Rhinolophus pumilus(Mammalia: Rhinolophidae), on Okinawa-jima Island, Ryukyu Archipelago, Japan(Animal Diversity and Evolution)
Hajime, Yoshino; Sumiko, Matsumura; Kazumitsu, Kinjo; Hisao, Tamura; Hidetoshi, Ota; Masako, Izawa; Laboratory of Evolution and Ecology, Faculty of Science, University of the Ryukyus; Faculty of Science, Yamaguchi University; Department of Law, Okinawa International University; Asian Bat Research Institute; Tropical Biosphere Research Center, University of the Ryukyus; Laboratory of Evolution and Ecology, Faculty of Science, University of the Ryukyus
The Okinawan least horseshoe bat, Rhinolophus pumilus, is a cave-dwelling species endemic to the central and southern Ryukyus, Japan. We analyzed variation in the constant frequency (CF) of the echolocation call and in forearm length (FAL) of this species on Okinawa-jima Island on the basis of data for 479 individuals from 11 caves scattered over the island. CF values in samples from six caves, all located in the southwestern half of Okinawa-jima, were significantly higher than those in sampl...
Full Text Available En la observación bioespelológica en una gruta ubicada en el cerro de Quinini, inspección de policía de Cumaca, Cundinamarca, se encontró una población de Opiliones de la Familia Gonyleptidae ,familia por primera vez reportada para Colombia. Se observó en los opiliones conductas de apareamiento y se realizó un estudio morfológico para una determinación taxonómica profunda.
Alejandro Parra; Oscar Vivas; Francisco Hormanza
En la observación bioespelológica en una gruta ubicada en el cerro de Quinini, inspección de policía de Cumaca, Cundinamarca, se encontró una población de Opiliones de la Familia Gonyleptidae ,familia por primera vez reportada para Colombia. Se observó en los opiliones conductas de apareamiento y se realizó un estudio morfológico para una determinación taxonómica profunda.
Bussotti, Simona; Di Franco, Antonio; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Chevaldonné, Pierre; Egea, Lea; Fanelli, Emanuela; Lejeusne, Christophe; Musco, Luigi; Navarro-Barranco, Carlos; Pey, Alexis; Planes, Serge; Vieux-Ingrassia, Jean Vincent; Guidetti, Paolo
Dark marine habitats are often characterized by a food-limited condition. Peculiar dark habitats include marine caves, characterized by the absence of light and limited water flow, which lead to reduced fluxes of organic matter for cave-dwelling organisms. We investigated whether the most abundant and common cave-dwelling fish Apogon imberbis has the potential to play the role of trophic vector in Mediterranean marine caves. We first analysed stomach contents to check whether repletion changes according to a nycthemeral cycle. We then identified the prey items, to see whether they belong to species associated with cave habitats or not. Finally, we assessed whether A. imberbis moves outside marine caves at night to feed, by collecting visual census data on A. imberbis density both inside and outside caves, by day and by night. The stomach repletion of individuals sampled early in the morning was significantly higher than later in the day. Most prey were typical of habitats other than caves. A. imberbis was on average more abundant within caves during the day and outside during the night. Our study supports the hypothesis regarding the crucial trophic role of A. imberbis in connecting Mediterranean marine caves with external habitats.
Gravesen, Eigil Vestergaard; Dreyer, Jamin
consumed by all three predators, but most often by ground beetles and nearly equally across all patch types. Curiously aphid DNA was only detected in beetles and harvestmen from bare ground patches where aphid abundance was very low and there were no vascular plants for them to feed on. The explanation...
Watiroyram, Santi; Brancelj, Anton; Sanoamuang, La-Orsri
Elaphoidella thailandensis sp. nov. and E. jaesornensis sp. nov., collected during an investigation of cave-dwelling copepod fauna in the northern part of Thailand, are described and figured herein. The new species were collected from pools filled by percolating water from the unsaturated zone of a karstic aquifer in Phitsanulok and Lampang Provinces, respectively. Elaphoidella thailandensis, from Tham Khun cave, is distinguished from its congeners by the two-segmented endopod of pediger 1, the absence of endopod on pediger 4, and the setal formula 4, 5, 6 for the distal exopodal segment of pedigers 2-4. Elaphoidella jaesornensis, from Tham Phar Ngam cave, is distinguished from its most closely related species, E. namnaoensis Brancelj, Watiroyram & Sanoamuang, 2010, by the armature formula of the endopod of pedigers 2-5. The geographical distribution and ecology of Harpacticoida from Thai caves is also presented.
Yoshino, Hajime; Matsumura, Sumiko; Kinjo, Kazumitsu; Tamura, Hisao; Ota, Hidetoshi; Izawa, Masako
The Okinawan least horseshoe bat, Rhinolophus pumilus, is a cave-dwelling species endemic to the central and southern Ryukyus, Japan. We analyzed variation in the constant frequency (CF) of the echolocation call and in forearm length (FAL) of this species on Okinawa-jima Island on the basis of data for 479 individuals from 11 caves scattered over the island. CF values in samples from six caves, all located in the southwestern half of Okinawa-jima, were significantly higher than those in samples from five caves in the northeastern half of the island. Also, FAL was significantly greater in the latter group than in the former group, although the ranges of variation in this character substantially overlapped between the two groups. These results suggest substantial differentiation between R. pumilus populations on Okinawa-jima. The implications of our findings for the conservation of this endangered bat species are briefly discussed.
The systematics and independent evolution of cave ecomorphology in distantly related clades of Bent-toed Geckos (Genus Cyrtodactylus Gray, 1827) from the Mekong Delta and islands in the Gulf of Thailand.
Grismer, L Lee; Wood, P L Jr; Tri, Ngo Van; Murdoch, Matthew L
An integrative taxonomic analysis of the distantly related Cyrtodactylus condorensis and intermedius species complexes of the Mekong Delta revealed that C. paradoxus is a junior synonym of C. condorensis and that C. thochuensis is a junior synonym of C. leegrismeri. Additionally, the analysis revealed that a cave-dwelling ecomorpholgy has evolved independently early on in the evolution of both complexes (represented by C. hontreensis in the intermedius complex and C. grismeri and C. eisenmani in the condorensis complex) and cave ecomorphs exist in sympatry-but not syntopy-with general scansorial ecomorphs. Multiple, recent, cyclical, glacioeustatic driven changes in sea levels across the Sunda Shelf are hypothesized to account for the evolution and distribution of the widely separated, conspecific insular populations of C. condorensis and C. leegrismeri. The independent evolution of cave ecomorphology is proposed to have been driven by competition avoidance. Habitat islands across the Mekong Delta are an important source of endemism and in need of protection.
Gustavo S. Miranda
Full Text Available A new species of Charinus is described from Israel and new localities for C. ioanniticus are reported. Charinus israelensis sp. nov. is a cave dwelling species with extremely small median eyes, no median tubercle and reduced lateral eyes. It is similar to C. ioanniticus, which occurs in nearby areas, but can be differentiated by the shape of the carapace, the number of pedipalp spines and the development of the eyes. A detailed comparison is made between the two species, including pictures, drawings and scanning electron micrographs. Charinus ioanniticus is reported here from several new localities in Israel and Turkey. Identification keys to the Charinus species groups and to the species of the bengalensis group are provided.
Varatharasan, Nirupa; Croll, Roger P; Franz-Odendaal, Tamara
In the blind cave-dwelling morph of A. mexicanus, the eye degenerates while other sensory systems, such as gustation, are expanded compared to their sighted (surface-dwelling) ancestor. This study compares the development of taste buds along the jaws of each morph. To determine whether cavefish have an altered onset or rate of taste bud development, we fluorescently labeled basal and receptor cells within taste buds over a developmental series. Our results show that taste bud number increases during development in both morphs. The rate of development is, however, accelerated in cavefish; a small difference in taste bud number exists at 5 dpf reaching threefold by 22 dpf. The expansion of taste buds in cavefish is, therefore, detectable after the onset of eye degeneration. This study provides important insights into the timing of taste bud expansion in cavefish as well as enhances our understanding of taste bud development in teleosts in general. (c) 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Marconi Souza Silva
Full Text Available The cave-dwelling invertebrates were studied according to their composition, biodiversity, distribution and threats in the Atlantic Forest Central Biodiversity Corridor, a priority area for conservation actions in Brazil. Twelve obligate cave species were found, plus 495 troglophile species. Araneae (103 spp., Coleoptera (61 spp., Diptera (56 spp. and Lepidoptera (38 spp. were the richest taxa. The richness was higher in the carbonate caves (63 spp., sd = 16.7 and the highest diversity in granitic caves (H´= 2.68, sd = 0.5. The spatial turnover was 63.45 and similarity less than 30%. The total richness was correlated with the linear extension of the caves (Rs = 0.757, p ≤ 0.05. Surrounding area deforestation and religious and tourist use were the main threats. Emergency attention is recommended regarding protective actions, management and conservation of caves of extremely high biological importance.
Seneviratne, Sampath S; Fernando, H Chandrika; Udagama-Randeniya, Preethi V
We undertook a field study to determine patterns of specialisation of ectoparasites in cave-dwelling bats in Sri Lanka. The hypothesis tested was that strict host specificity (monoxeny) could evolve through the development of differential species preferences through association with the different host groups. Three species of cave-dwelling bats were chosen to represent a wide range of host-parasite associations (monoxeny to polyxeny), and both sympatric and allopatric roosting assemblages. Of the eight caves selected, six caves were "allopatric" roosts where two of each housed only one of the three host species examined: Rousettus leschenaulti (Pteropodidae), Rhinolophus rouxi and Hipposideros speoris (Rhinolophidae). The remaining two caves were "sympatric" roosts and housed all three host species. Thirty bats of each species were examined for ectoparasites in each cave, which resulted in a collection of nycteribiid and streblid flies, an ischnopsyllid bat flea, argasid and ixodid ticks, and mites belonging to three families. The host specificity of bat parasites showed a trend to monoxeny in which 70% of the 30 species reported were monoxenous. Odds ratios derived from chi(2)-tests revealed two levels of host preferences in less-specific parasites (i) the parasite was found on two host species under conditions of both host sympatry and host allopatry, with a preference for a single host in the case of host sympatry and (ii) the preference for a single host was very high, hence under conditions of host sympatry, it was confined to the preferred host only. However, under conditions of host allopatry, it utilized both hosts. There appears to be an increasing prevalence in host preferences of the parasites toward confinement to a single host species. The ecological isolation of the bat hosts and a long history of host-parasite co-existence could have contributed to an overall tendency of bat ectoparasites to become specialists, here reflected in the high percentage
Božanić, B.; Hradílek, Z.; Machač, O.; Pižl, Václav; Šťáhlavský, F.; Tufová, J.; Véle, A.; Tuf, I.H.
Roč. 65, č. 2 (2013), s. 197-206 ISSN 0324-0770 Grant - others:GA MŽP(CZ) SP/2D3/155/08; GA MŽP(CZ) IGA PrF/2010/001 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Chilopoda * Diplopoda * Oniscidea * Araneae * Pseudoscorpiones * Opiliones * Formicidae * Lumbricidae * Litovelské Pomoraví Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.357, year: 2013
Walsh, Stephen J.; Chakrabarty, Prosanta
Caecieleotris morrisi, new genus and species of sleeper (family Eleotridae), is described from a submerged freshwater cave in a karst region of the northern portion of the State of Oaxaca, Mexico, Río Papaloapan drainage, Gulf of Mexico basin. The new species represents the first cave-adapted sleeper known from the Western Hemisphere and is one of only 13 stygobitic gobiiforms known worldwide, with all others limited in distribution to the Indo-Pacific region. The new taxon represents a third independent evolution of a hypogean lifestyle in sleepers, the others being two species ofOxyeleotris (O. caeca and O. colasi) from New Guinea and a single species, Bostrychus microphthalmus, from Sulawesi. Caecieleotris morrisi, new species, is distinguished from epigean eleotrids of the Western Atlantic in lacking functional eyes and body pigmentation, as well as having other troglomorphic features. It shares convergent aspects of morphology with cave-dwelling species of Oxyeleotris and B. microphthalmus but differs from those taxa in lacking cephalic pores and head squamation, among other characters. Description of C. morrisi, new species, brings the total number of eleotrid species known from Mexico to 12. Seven of these, including the new species, occur on the Atlantic Slope.
Pannkuk, Evan L.; Mcguire, Liam P.; Warnecke, Lisa; Turner, James M.; Willis, Craig K.R.; Risch, Thomas S.
Pseudogymnoascus destructans is an ascomycetous fungus responsible for the disease dubbed white nose syndrome (WNS) and massive mortalities of cave dwelling bats. The fungus infects bat epidermal tissue causing damage to integumentary cells and pilosebaceous units. Differences in epidermal lipid composition caused by P. destructans infection could have drastic consequences for a variety of physiological functions, including innate immune efficiency and water retention. While bat surface lipid and stratum corneum lipid composition have been described; the differences in epidermal lipid content between healthy tissue and P. destructans infected tissue have not been documented. In this study, we analyzed the effect of wing damage from P. destructans infection on the epidermal polar lipid composition (glycerophospholipids [GPs] and sphingomyelin [SM]) of little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus). We hypothesized that bats infected with P. destructans would have altered lipid profiles compared to healthy bats. Polar lipids from three damaged and three healthy wing samples were profiled by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. The SM fraction was not significantly affected by P. destructans infection. We found lower total broad lipid levels in damaged tissue, specifically ether-linked phospholipids, lysophospholipids, phosphatidylcholine, and phosphatidylethanolamine. Thirteen individual GP species from 4 broad GP classes were present in higher amounts in healthy tissue. Six unsaturated GP species were absent in damaged tissue. Our results confirm P. destructans infection leads to altered lipid profiles. Clinical signs of WNS may include lower lipid levels and lower proportions of unsaturated lipids due to cellular and glandular damage. PMID:26052639
von Reumont, Björn M; Blanke, Alexander; Richter, Sandy; Alvarez, Fernando; Bleidorn, Christoph; Jenner, Ronald A
Animal venoms have evolved many times. Venomous species are especially common in three of the four main groups of arthropods (Chelicerata, Myriapoda, and Hexapoda), which together represent tens of thousands of species of venomous spiders, scorpions, centipedes, and hymenopterans. Surprisingly, despite their great diversity of body plans, there is no unambiguous evidence that any crustacean is venomous. We provide the first conclusive evidence that the aquatic, blind, and cave-dwelling remipede crustaceans are venomous and that venoms evolved in all four major arthropod groups. We produced a three-dimensional reconstruction of the venom delivery apparatus of the remipede Speleonectes tulumensis, showing that remipedes can inject venom in a controlled manner. A transcriptomic profile of its venom glands shows that they express a unique cocktail of transcripts coding for known venom toxins, including a diversity of enzymes and a probable paralytic neurotoxin very similar to one described from spider venom. We screened a transcriptomic library obtained from whole animals and identified a nontoxin paralog of the remipede neurotoxin that is not expressed in the venom glands. This allowed us to reconstruct its probable evolutionary origin and underlines the importance of incorporating data derived from nonvenom gland tissue to elucidate the evolution of candidate venom proteins. This first glimpse into the venom of a crustacean and primitively aquatic arthropod reveals conspicuous differences from the venoms of other predatory arthropods such as centipedes, scorpions, and spiders and contributes valuable information for ultimately disentangling the many factors shaping the biology and evolution of venoms and venomous species.
Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja; Ladich, Friedrich; Riesch, Rüdiger; Plath, Martin
Cave fish have rarely been investigated with regard to their inner ear morphology, hearing abilities, and acoustic communication. Based on a previous study that revealed morphological differences in the saccular otolith between a cave and two surface populations of Poecilia mexicana, we checked for additional differences in utricular and lagenar otoliths and tested whether different populations have similar hearing sensitivities. We found pronounced differences in the shape of all three otoliths. Otoliths of the saccule and lagena from cave fish differed from those of surface fish in the features of the face oriented towards the sensory epithelium. In addition, otoliths of the utricle and lagena were significantly heavier in cave fish. Auditory sensitivities were measured between 100 and 1500 Hz, utilizing the auditory evoked potential recording technique. We found similar hearing abilities in cave and surface fish, with greatest sensitivity between 200 and 300 Hz. An acoustic survey revealed that neither ecotype produced species-specific sounds. Our data indicate that cave dwelling altered the otolith morphology in Atlantic mollies, probably due to metabolic differences. Different otolith morphology, however, did not affect general auditory sensitivity or acoustic behavior. PMID:20430090
Full Text Available Twenty-five bats were trapped in Yutaje (Amazonas, Venezuela and examined for Litomosoides (Filarioidea: Onchocercidae. Of the nine recovered bat species, only Pteronotus parnelli was infected; it is a cave-dwelling species belonging to a family, Mormoopidae, which has not previously been included in the host range of the genus. The new species, L. yutajensis n. sp., has two median cephalic bosses covered with rugosities and differs from the 15 recognized species and subspecies from bats in several characters. Alike L. molossi Esslinger, 1973, L. chandleri Esslinger, 1973 and L. chitwoodi Bain, Guerrero, Rodriguez 2003 , the new species has cuticular lateral bosses on the body. Eight of 10 P. parnelli were microfilaraemic, but only three had adult worms, showing that microfilariae survive longer than adults, which could lengthen the period of transmission. No infective larvae were detected in the following macronyssid mites: 58 Ornithonyssus bacoti, Ornithonyssinae, experimentally fed on microfilaraemic bats and dissected 15 days later, and a few Radfordiella sp., Macronyssinae, recovered from P. parnelli.
Cukrov, Neven; Cukrov, Marijana; Lojen, Sonja
Serpulidae Rafinesque, 1815 is a family of polychaete annelids with calcareous tubes found in worldwide from littoral to abyssal depths. Of more than 350 described species of serpulid polychaetes, Marifugia cavatica Absolon and Hrabe 1930 is the only known cave-dwelling stygobiotic and freshwater serpulid, five other serpulid species comprising the genus Ficopomatus are found in brackish water, otherwise serpulids are all marine organisms. Ficopomatus enigmaticus (Fauvel, 1923), previously known as Mercierella enigmatica, is a truly cosmopolitan with disjunct distribution. It has been found worldwide inhabiting coastal brackish waters, lagoons and estuaries of warm temperate areas of both hemispheres. This tubeworm builds calcareous tubes on any hard substrate. With distinctive collar-like rings at irregular intervals it is relatively easy to identify. It is an efficient suspension-feeder, very tolerant and physiologically well adapted to temperature and salinity variations, eutrophic conditions and low dissolved oxygen content. The fact that populations of F. enigmaticus appear near the ports suggests that the probable mechanism of introduction was ship fouling or ballast water. Generally, F. enigmaticus is considered as a fouling nuisance species which negatively affects ships, buoys and harbour structures.
David M Darda
Full Text Available Osteological variation is recorded among and within four of the most distinctive species of the Mexican salamander genus Chiropterotriton. Analysis of the data is consistent with the monophyletic status of the genus and documents previously unrecorded intraspecific and interspecific variation. Most of the recorded variation involves qualitative and quantitative proportional differences, but four fixed differences constitute autapomorphic states that affirm and diagnose some species (C. dimidiatus, C. magnipes. Osteological variation in 15 characters is analyzed with respect to predictions generated from four hypotheses: 1 phylogeny, 2 adaptation to specific habitats (the four species include cave-dwelling, terrestrial, and arboreal forms, 3 size-free shape, and 4 size. High levels of intraspecific variation suggest that the characters studied are not subject to rigid functional constraints in salamanders, regardless of size. The pattern predicted by the hypothesis based on size differences seen among these four Chiropterotriton species matches most closely the observed pattern of relative skull robustness. Since size change and heterochrony are often associated in plethodontid evolution, it is likely that changes in developmental timing play a role in the morphological transitions among these morphologically diverse taxa. Webbed feet, miniaturization, body shape, and an unusual tarsal arrangement are morphologies exhibited in species of Chiropterotrition that are shown to be homoplastic with other clades of tropical plethodontids. Although extensive homoplasy in salamanders might be seen as a roadblock to unraveling phylogenetic hypotheses, the homologous developmental systems that appear to underlie such homoplasy may reveal common and consistent evolutionary processes at work.
Pannkuk, Evan L; McGuire, Liam P; Warnecke, Lisa; Turner, James M; Willis, Craig K R; Risch, Thomas S
Pseudogymnoascus destructans is an ascomycetous fungus responsible for the disease dubbed white-nose syndrome (WNS) and massive mortalities of cave-dwelling bats. The fungus infects bat epidermal tissue, causing damage to integumentary cells and pilosebaceous units. Differences in epidermal lipid composition caused by P. destructans infection could have drastic consequences for a variety of physiological functions, including innate immune efficiency and water retention. While bat surface lipid and stratum corneum lipid composition have been described, the differences in epidermal lipid content between healthy tissue and P. destructans-infected tissue have not been documented. In this study, we analyzed the effect of wing damage from P. destructans infection on the epidermal polar lipid composition (glycerophospholipids [GPs] and sphingomyelin) of little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus). We hypothesized that infection would lead to lower levels of total lipid or higher oxidized lipid product proportions. Polar lipids from three damaged and three healthy wing samples were profiled by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. We found lower total broad lipid levels in damaged tissue, specifically ether-linked phospholipids, lysophospholipids, phosphatidylcholine, and phosphatidylethanolamine. Thirteen individual GP species from four broad GP classes were present in higher amounts in healthy tissue. Six unsaturated GP species were absent in damaged tissue. Our results confirm that P. destructans infection leads to altered lipid profiles. Clinical signs of WNS may include lower lipid levels and lower proportions of unsaturated lipids due to cellular and glandular damage.
Schilthuizen, Menno; Scholte, Cindy; van Wijk, Renske E J; Dommershuijzen, Jessy; van der Horst, Devi; Zu Schlochtern, Melanie Meijer; Lievers, Rik; Groenenberg, Dick S J
The beetle family Cholevidae (Coleoptera: Staphylinoidea), sometimes viewed as the subfamily Cholevinae of the Leiodidae, consists of some 1700 species worldwide. With the exception of specialized cave-dwelling species and species living in bird and mammal nests and burrows, the species are generalized soil-dwellers that, at least in temperate regions, are mostly found on vertebrate cadavers. Although they have been regularly reported from human corpses, and offer potential because of many species' peak activity in the cold season, they have not been a focus of forensic entomologists so far. This is probably due to their small size and the difficulty in identifying the adults and their larvae. In this paper, we show that DNA-barcoding can help make this group of necrobiont beetles available as a tool for forensic research. We collected 86 specimens of 20 species of the genera Catops, Fissocatops, Apocatops, Choleva, Nargus, Ptomaphagus, and Sciodrepoides from the Netherlands and France and show that a broad "barcoding gap" allows almost all species to be easily and unambiguously identified by the sequence of the "barcoding gene" cytochrome c oxidase I (COI). This opens up the possibility of adding Cholevidae to the set of insect taxa routinely used in forensic entomology. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Gorički, Špela; Stanković, David; Snoj, Aleš; Kuntner, Matjaž; Jeffery, William R.; Trontelj, Peter; Pavićević, Miloš; Grizelj, Zlatko; Năpăruş-Aljančič, Magdalena; Aljančič, Gregor
Europe’s obligate cave-dwelling amphibian Proteus anguinus inhabits subterranean waters of the north-western Balkan Peninsula. Because only fragments of its habitat are accessible to humans, this endangered salamander’s exact distribution has been difficult to establish. Here we introduce a quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction-based environmental DNA (eDNA) approach to detect the presence of Proteus using water samples collected from karst springs, wells or caves. In a survey conducted along the southern limit of its known range, we established a likely presence of Proteus at seven new sites, extending its range to Montenegro. Next, using specific molecular probes to discriminate the rare black morph of Proteus from the closely related white morph, we detected its eDNA at five new sites, thus more than doubling the known number of sites. In one of these we found both black and white Proteus eDNA together. This finding suggests that the two morphs may live in contact with each other in the same body of groundwater and that they may be reproductively isolated species. Our results show that the eDNA approach is suitable and efficient in addressing questions in biogeography, evolution, taxonomy and conservation of the cryptic subterranean fauna.
Joshua B. Gross
Full Text Available Craniofacial asymmetry is a convergent trait widely distributed across animals that colonize the extreme cave environment. Although craniofacial asymmetry can be discerned easily, other complex phenotypes (such as sensory organ position and numerical variation are challenging to score and compare. Certain bones of the craniofacial complex demonstrate substantial asymmetry, and co-localize to regions harboring dramatically expanded numbers of mechanosensory neuromasts. To determine if a relationship exists between this expansion and bone fragmentation in cavefish, we developed a quantitative measure of positional symmetry across the left-right axis. We found that three different cave-dwelling populations were significantly more asymmetric compared to surface-dwelling fish. Moreover, cave populations did not differ in the degree of neuromast asymmetry. This work establishes a method for quantifying symmetry of a complex phenotype, and demonstrates that facial bone fragmentation mirrors the asymmetric distribution of neuromasts in different cavefish populations. Further developmental studies will provide a clearer picture of the developmental and cellular changes that accompany this extreme phenotype, and help illuminate the genetic basis for facial asymmetry in vertebrates.
Ramasindrazana, Beza; Dellagi, Koussay; Lagadec, Erwan; Randrianarivelojosia, Milijaona; Goodman, Steven M; Tortosa, Pablo
We investigated filarial infection in Malagasy bats to gain insights into the diversity of these parasites and explore the factors shaping their distribution. Samples were obtained from 947 individual bats collected from 52 sites on Madagascar and representing 31 of the 44 species currently recognized on the island. Samples were screened for the presence of micro- and macro-parasites through both molecular and morphological approaches. Phylogenetic analyses showed that filarial diversity in Malagasy bats formed three main groups, the most common represented by Litomosa spp. infecting Miniopterus spp. (Miniopteridae); a second group infecting Pipistrellus cf. hesperidus (Vespertilionidae) embedded within the Litomosoides cluster, which is recognized herein for the first time from Madagascar; and a third group composed of lineages with no clear genetic relationship to both previously described filarial nematodes and found in M. griveaudi, Myotis goudoti, Neoromicia matroka (Vespertilionidae), Otomops madagascariensis (Molossidae), and Paratriaenops furculus (Hipposideridae). We further analyzed the infection rates and distribution pattern of Litomosa spp., which was the most diverse and prevalent filarial taxon in our sample. Filarial infection was disproportionally more common in males than females in Miniopterus spp., which might be explained by some aspect of roosting behavior of these cave-dwelling bats. We also found marked geographic structure in the three Litomosa clades, mainly linked to bioclimatic conditions rather than host-parasite associations. While this study demonstrates distinct patterns of filarial nematode infection in Malagasy bats and highlights potential drivers of associated geographic distributions, future work should focus on their alpha taxonomy and characterize arthropod vectors.
Enghoff, Henrik; Pedersen, Jan; Toft, Søren
Since 1985 the num ber of harvestmen spe cies re corded from Den mark has grown from 17 to 25. The new spe cies and the year of their first Dan ish re cord are: Opilio canestrinii (Thorell, 1876) – 1985; Lacinius horridus (Pan zer, 1794) – 1994; Odiellus spinosus (Bosc, 1792) – 2006; Dicranopalpus...... tisciae Avram, 1968 (= L. rupestre auct.) in Den mark; and Nemastoma dentigerum Canestrini, 1873, N. bimaculatum (Fabricius, 1775), Lacinius dentiger (C.L. Koch, 1848), Leiobunum limbatum L. Koch, 1861, and Nelima doriae (Canestrini, 1871) are men tioned as can di dates for fu ture dis cov er ies...
Anbarashan, Padmavathy; Gopalswamy, Poyyamoli
The usage of synthetic fertilizers/insecticides in conventional farming has dramatically increased over the past decades. The aim of the study was to compare the effects of bio-pesticides and insecticides/pesticides on selected beneficial non targeted arthropods. Orders Collembola, Arachinida/Opiliones, Oribatida and Coleoptera were the main groups of arthropods found in the organic fields and Coleoptera, Oribatida, Gamasida and Collembola in conventional fields. Pesticides/insecticides had a significant effect on non-targeted arthropods order- Collembola, Arachinida/Opiliones, Hymenoptera and Thysonoptera were suppressed after pesticides/insecticides spraying. Bio-insecticides in organic fields had a non-significant effect on non targeted species and they started to increase in abundance after 7 days of spraying, whereas insecticide treatment in conventional fields had a significant long-term effect on non targeted arthropods and short term effect on pests/insects, it started to increase after 21 days of the spraying. These results indicate that insecticide treatment kept non targeted arthropods at low abundance. In conclusion, organic farming does not significantly affected the beneficial-non targeted arthropods biodiversity, whereas preventive insecticide application in conventional fields had significant negative effects on beneficial non targeted arthropods. Therefore, conventional farmers should restrict insecticide applications, unless pest densities reach the thresholds and more desirably can switch to organic farming practices.
Full Text Available Extractos alcohólicos, hexánicos y diclorometánicos de 751 muestras de artrópodos fueron estudiados por la presencia de actividad antimalárica. En este trabajo se empleó un modelo murino usando el Plasmodium berghei, modelo que es biológicamente similar a la malaria humana. El estudio fue realizado determinando el efecto del extracto sobre el parásito por la inclusión o no del colorante azul de cresil brillante. Estimando como positivos aquellos extractos cuya actividad antimalárica se mostró en concentraciones no mayores de 50 mg, se encontró que los órdenes más promisorios fueron Lepidoptera (24.1%, Polydesmida (81.3%, Blattodea (25% y Opiliones, entre otros. Las formas inmaduras de Lepidoptera fueron las más positivas, por lo que se analizaron las plantas hospederos de donde se alimentaban dichos organismos. Las familias de estas plantas eran Malvaceae, Acanthaceae, Rutaceae, Myrtaceae, Solanaceae, Fabaceae, Urticaceae, Anacardiaceae, Rosaceae, Asteraceae, Rubiaceae, Lauraceae y Caprifoliaceae. Especies de casi todas estas familias han sido reportadas con actividad antimalárica. En el caso de los órdenes Polydesmida, Opiliones y Blattodea, cuyas formas adultas presentaron alguna actividad contra P. berghei, encontramos que todos esos grupos se alimentan también de plantas. En el caso de Opiliones sus especies son predadores de lepidópteros, coleópteros, hemípteros fitófagos y otros artrópodos, además de que producen sustancias de defensas tales como alcoholes, cetonas y quinonas, entre otros, todo lo cual podría explicar la actividad encontrada. Algunas especies del Orden Polydesmida, también secretan ciertas sustancias químicas, las cuales podrían tener un efecto antiparasitario. Así, a través de este trabajo en artrópodos hemos llegado a identificar fuentes vegetales potenciales para componentes antimaláricos.Natural concentration of antimalaric components in Tropical arthropods (in vitro. Alcohol, hexane and
Charlton, Bruce G
The mid-20th century saw the rise of the boy-genius, probably because a personality type characterized by prolonged youthfulness is advantageous both in science and modern life generally. This is the evolution of 'psychological neoteny', in which ever-more people retain for ever-longer the characteristic behaviours and attitudes of earlier developmental stages. Whereas traditional societies are characterized by initiation ceremonies marking the advent of adulthood, these have now dwindled and disappeared. In a psychological sense, some contemporary individuals never actually become adults. A child-like flexibility of attitudes, behaviours and knowledge is probably adaptive in modern society because people need repeatedly to change jobs, learn new skills, move to new places and make new friends. It seems that this adaptation is achieved by the expedient of postponing cognitive maturation - a process that could be termed psychological neoteny. ('Neoteny' refers to the biological phenomenon whereby development is delayed such that juvenile characteristics are retained into maturity.) Psychological neoteny is probably caused by the prolonged average duration of formal education, since students' minds are in a significant sense 'unfinished'. Since modern cultures favour cognitive flexibility, 'immature' people tend to thrive and succeed, and have set the tone of contemporary life: the greatest praise of an elderly person is to state that they retain the characteristics of youth. But the faults of youth are retained with well as its virtues: short attention span, sensation- and novelty-seeking, short cycles of arbitrary fashion and a sense of cultural shallowness. Nonetheless, as health gets better and cosmetic technologies improve, future humans may become somewhat like an axolotl - the cave-dwelling salamander which retains its larval form until death.
Gunnell, Gregg F; Manthi, Fredrick K
Fossil bats from the Pliocene of Africa are extremely rare, especially in East Africa where meager records have been reported only from two localities in the Omo River Basin Shungura Formation and from a scattering of localities in the Afar Depression, both in Ethiopia. Here we report on a diverse assemblage of bats from Kanapoi in the Turkana Basin that date to approximately 4.19 million years ago. The Kanapoi bat community consists of four different species of fruit bats including a new genus and two new species as well as five species of echolocating bats, the most common of which are two new species of the molossid genus Mops. Additionally, among the echolocating bats, a new species of the emballonurid Saccolaimus is documented at Kanapoi along with an additional Saccolaimus species and a potentially new species of the nycterid Nycteris. Compared to other East African Pliocene bat assemblages, the Kanapoi bat community is unique in preserving molossids and curiously lacks any evidence of cave dwelling bats like rhinolophids or hipposiderids, which are both common at other East African sites. The bats making up the Kanapoi community all typically roost in trees, with some preferring deeper forests and larger trees (molossids), while the others (pteropodids, nycterids and emballonurids) roost in trees near open areas. Living fruit bats that are related to Kanapoi species typically forage for fruits along the margins of forests and in open savannah. The echolocating forms from Kanapoi consist of groups that aerially hawk for insects in open areas between patches of forest and along water courses. The habitats preferred by living relatives of the Kanapoi bats are in agreement with those constructed for Kanapoi based on other lines of evidence. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Sia, Ting Jin; Zubaid, Akbar; Foo, Ng Yong
Monitoring population trends of bats in caves is difficult but is very important for their conservation. Their vulnerability to decline cannot be taken lightly and must be monitored for future management purposes especially in places open to the public. No studies have been done on bats roosting in caves at Kota Gelanggi and there are very few published studies of cave-dwelling bats in Malaysia. To fill this gap, a study on monitoring the population trends of Rhinolophus affinis was carried out in two caves namely, Gua Kepala Gajah and Gua Tongkat. This study was conducted from October 2013 until December 2014. The population size was estimated by direct visual counts and photographic methods during the day. The bats were caught by using mists net and harp traps. The reproductive condition of both female and male individuals was examined. The mean estimated population size for R. affinis in Gua Kepala Gajah was 221 individuals and 464 in Gua Tongkat. The population size of R. affinis showed an obvious decline during the breeding season and increased gradually after that for both caves. Pregnant R. affinis were found in April 2014 and lactating in June 2014 in both caves. It is important to know the breeding and non-breeding season of bats in both caves and their roosting behaviour in order to protect the bats from human disturbance as these caves are open to the public. The findings will enable the TEKAM management to come out with a proper conservation and management plan for protecting the bat fauna in these caves.
Full Text Available A new genus and species of cave-dwelling leiodid beetles (Rozajella jovanvladimiri gen. n., sp. n. has been diagnozed and described from the Pećina u Dubokom Potoku Cave, village of Donje Biševo, near Rožaje, Eastern Montenegro. This new genus clearly differs from all other close genera in the following correlative traits: body size; shape of head; presence of occipital carina, length of antennae; morphometric ratios and form of certain antennomeres; head/pronotum width ratio; pronotum length/width ratio; form of lateral pronotal margins; pronotal/elytral base length ratio; form of femora and protarsi; presence of apical rows of spines on tibiae; form of elytra; existence of elytral shoulders; length of elytral setae; form of median lobe and its apex; form of inner sac; length of basal bulbus; form of parameres and their apices; distribution of parameral setae; and distribution in the Balkan Peninsula. Rozajella gen. n. belongs to a separate phyletic lineage (série phylétique de "Leptodirus" - sensu Perre au 2000 which includes five other genera, Leptostagus Z. Karaman (from Macedonia, Petkovskiella Guéorguiev (from Macedonia, Astagobius Reitter (from Slovenia and Croatia, Albanodirus Giachino & Vailati (from Albania, and Leptodirus Schmidt (from Slovenia, Croatia, and Italy. The new genus is present in Eastern Montenegro only. The Rozajella-Leptostagus-Petkovskiella-Astagobius-Albanodirus-Leptodirus complex is probably of early Tertiary age, its species having originated during the Alpine Orogeny, which affected vast areas of the Balkan Peninsula, including the Dinarids, otherwise their terra typica. .
Bilandžija, Helena; Ma, Li; Parkhurst, Amy; Jeffery, William R
Albinism, the loss of melanin pigmentation, has evolved in a diverse variety of cave animals but the responsible evolutionary mechanisms are unknown. In Astyanax mexicanus, which has a pigmented surface dwelling form (surface fish) and several albino cave-dwelling forms (cavefish), albinism is caused by loss of function mutations in the oca2 gene, which operates during the first step of the melanin synthesis pathway. In addition to albinism, cavefish have evolved differences in behavior, including feeding and sleep, which are under the control of the catecholamine system. The catecholamine and melanin synthesis pathways diverge after beginning with the same substrate, L-tyrosine. Here we describe a novel relationship between the catecholamine and melanin synthesis pathways in Astyanax. Our results show significant increases in L-tyrosine, dopamine, and norepinephrine in pre-feeding larvae and adult brains of Pachón cavefish relative to surface fish. In addition, norepinephrine is elevated in cavefish adult kidneys, which contain the teleost homologs of catecholamine synthesizing adrenal cells. We further show that the oca2 gene is expressed during surface fish development but is downregulated in cavefish embryos. A key finding is that knockdown of oca2 expression in surface fish embryos delays the development of pigmented melanophores and simultaneously increases L-tyrosine and dopamine. We conclude that a potential evolutionary benefit of albinism in Astyanax cavefish may be to provide surplus L-tyrosine as a precursor for the elevated catecholamine synthesis pathway, which could be important for adaptation to the challenging cave environment.
Full Text Available Albinism, the loss of melanin pigmentation, has evolved in a diverse variety of cave animals but the responsible evolutionary mechanisms are unknown. In Astyanax mexicanus, which has a pigmented surface dwelling form (surface fish and several albino cave-dwelling forms (cavefish, albinism is caused by loss of function mutations in the oca2 gene, which operates during the first step of the melanin synthesis pathway. In addition to albinism, cavefish have evolved differences in behavior, including feeding and sleep, which are under the control of the catecholamine system. The catecholamine and melanin synthesis pathways diverge after beginning with the same substrate, L-tyrosine. Here we describe a novel relationship between the catecholamine and melanin synthesis pathways in Astyanax. Our results show significant increases in L-tyrosine, dopamine, and norepinephrine in pre-feeding larvae and adult brains of Pachón cavefish relative to surface fish. In addition, norepinephrine is elevated in cavefish adult kidneys, which contain the teleost homologs of catecholamine synthesizing adrenal cells. We further show that the oca2 gene is expressed during surface fish development but is downregulated in cavefish embryos. A key finding is that knockdown of oca2 expression in surface fish embryos delays the development of pigmented melanophores and simultaneously increases L-tyrosine and dopamine. We conclude that a potential evolutionary benefit of albinism in Astyanax cavefish may be to provide surplus L-tyrosine as a precursor for the elevated catecholamine synthesis pathway, which could be important for adaptation to the challenging cave environment.
Hulva, P; Marešová, T; Dundarova, H; Bilgin, R; Benda, P; Bartonička, T; Horáček, I
Here, we present a study of the population genetic architecture and microevolution of the Egyptian fruit bat (Rousettus aegyptiacus) at the environmental margins in the Middle East using mitochondrial sequences and nuclear microsatellites. In contrast to the rather homogenous population structure typical of cave-dwelling bats in climax tropical ecosystems, a relatively pronounced isolation by distance and population diversification was observed. The evolution of this pattern could be ascribed to the complicated demographic history at higher latitudes related to the range margin fragmentation and complex geomorphology of the studied area. Lineages from East Africa and Arabia show divergent positions. Within the northwestern unit, the most marked pattern of the microsatellite data set is connected with insularity, as demonstrated by the separate status of populations from Saharan oases and Cyprus. These demes also exhibit a reduction in genetic variability, which is presumably connected with founder effects, drift and other potential factors related to island evolution as site-specific selection. Genetic clustering indicates a semipermeability of the desert barriers in the Sahara and Arabian Peninsula and a corridor role of the Nile Valley. The results emphasize the role of the island environment in restricting the gene flow in megabats, which is also corroborated by biogeographic patterns within the family, and suggests the possibility of nascent island speciation on Cyprus. Demographic analyses suggest that the colonization of the region was connected to the spread of agricultural plants; therefore, the peripatric processes described above might be because of or strengthened by anthropogenic changes in the environment. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Full Text Available Abstract Reviewing available information from published literature, museum database, personal communications and from the authors own field data, the conservation status of Cuban bats has been assessed using six qualitative parameters: abundance, distribution, roosting habits, aggregation level, forest dependence, and degree of endemism. The resulting Red List is analogous to that of the IUCN, species having been included in four categories of risk. Four out of the 26 extant bats of Cuba should be considered endangered, four vulnerable to extinction, twelve potentially threatened, and six in a stable situation. Most of the species of bats endemic to Cuba are under some form of threat. The major threats to the survival of Cuban bats are the destruction of forests and the modification of caves, the latter being critical habitats for the mostly cave-dwelling Cuban bat fauna. We argue that its conservation should be the result of a cooperative effort promoting research and habitat management. Riassunto Endemismi minacciati: una valutazione dello stato di conservazione dei chirotteri cubani. Lo stato di conservazione dei chirotteri cubani è stato valutato a partire da sei parametri qualitativi: abbondanza, distribuzione, roost utilizzati, livello di aggregazione, dipendenza da ambienti forestali e grado di endemismo. A questo scopo sono state esaminate le informazioni bibliografiche, i database dei musei e dati non pubblicati, in parte raccolti dagli stessi autori. La Lista Rossa risultante è analoga a quella dell’IUCN, comprendendo quattro categorie di rischio crescente. Delle 26 specie attualmente presenti a Cuba, 4 sono da considerarsi in pericolo di estinzione, 4 "vulnerabili", 12 "potenzialmente minacciate" e 6 "stabili". La maggior parte delle specie endemiche è in qualche misura minacciata. La deforestazione e l’alterazione delle cavità carsiche, che costituiscono un habitat
Pannkuk, Evan L; Blair, Hannah B; Fischer, Amy E; Gerdes, Cheyenne L; Gilmore, David F; Savary, Brett J; Risch, Thomas S
Pseudogymnoascus destructans is a psychrophilic fungus that infects cutaneous tissues in cave dwelling bats, and it is the causal agent for white nose syndrome (WNS) in North American (NA) bat populations. Geomyces pannorum is a related psychrotolerant keratinolytic species that is rarely a pathogen of mammals. In this study, we grew P. destructans and G. pannorum in static liquid cultures at favourable and suboptimal temperatures to: 1) determine if triacylglyceride profiles are species-specific, and 2) determine if there are differences in fatty acyl (FA) saturation levels with respect to temperature. Total lipids isolated from both fungal spp. were separated by thin-layer chromatography and determined to be primarily sterols (∼15 %), free fatty acids (FFAs) (∼45 %), and triacylglycerides (TAGs) (∼50 %), with minor amounts of mono-/diacylglycerides and sterol esters. TAG compositions were profiled by matrix-assisted laser desorption-ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF). Total fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) and acyl lipid unsaturation levels were determined by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Pseudogymnoascus destructans produced higher proportions of unsaturated 18C fatty acids and TAGs than G. pannorum. Pseudogymnoascus destructans and G. pannorum produced up to a two-fold increase in 18:3 fatty acids at 5 °C than at higher temperatures. TAG proportion for P. destructans at upper and lower temperature growth limits was greater than 50 % of total dried mycelia mass. These results indicate fungal spp. alter acyl lipid unsaturation as a strategy to adapt to cold temperatures. Differences between their glycerolipid profiles also provide evidence for a different metabolic strategy to support psychrophilic growth, which may influence P. destructans' pathogenicity to bats. Copyright © 2014 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Natalya D Gallo
Full Text Available The relationship between growth rate and environmental space is an unresolved issue in teleosts. While it is known from aquaculture studies that stocking density has a negative relationship to growth, the underlying mechanisms have not been elucidated, primarily because the growth rate of populations rather than individual fish were the subject of all previous studies. Here we investigate this problem in the teleost Astyanax mexicanus, which consists of a sighted surface-dwelling form (surface fish and several blind cave-dwelling (cavefish forms. Surface fish and cavefish are distinguished by living in spatially contrasting environments and therefore are excellent models to study the effects of environmental size on growth. Multiple controlled growth experiments with individual fish raised in confined or unconfined spaces showed that environmental size has a major impact on growth rate in surface fish, a trait we have termed space dependent growth (SDG. In contrast, SDG has regressed to different degrees in the Pachón and Tinaja populations of cavefish. Mating experiments between surface and Pachón cavefish show that SDG is inherited as a dominant trait and is controlled by multiple genetic factors. Despite its regression in blind cavefish, SDG is not affected when sighted surface fish are raised in darkness, indicating that vision is not required to perceive and react to environmental space. Analysis of plasma cortisol levels showed that an elevation above basal levels occurred soon after surface fish were exposed to confined space. This initial cortisol peak was absent in Pachón cavefish, suggesting that the effects of confined space on growth may be mediated partly through a stress response. We conclude that Astyanax reacts to confined spaces by exhibiting SDG, which has a genetic component and shows evolutionary regression during adaptation of cavefish to confined environments.
Full Text Available Many bats are threatened by habitat loss, but opportunities to manage their habitats are now increasing. Success of management depends greatly on the capacity to determine where and how interventions should take place, so models predicting how animals use landscapes are important to plan them. Bats are quite distinctive in the way they use space for foraging because (i most are colonial central-place foragers and (ii exploit scattered and distant resources, although this increases flying costs. To evaluate how important distances to resources are in modelling foraging bat habitat suitability, we radio-tracked two cave-dwelling species of conservation concern (Rhinolophus mehelyi and Miniopterus schreibersii in a Mediterranean landscape. Habitat and distance variables were evaluated using logistic regression modelling. Distance variables greatly increased the performance of models, and distance to roost and to drinking water could alone explain 86 and 73% of the use of space by M. schreibersii and R. mehelyi, respectively. Land-cover and soil productivity also provided a significant contribution to the final models. Habitat suitability maps generated by models with and without distance variables differed substantially, confirming the shortcomings of maps generated without distance variables. Indeed, areas shown as highly suitable in maps generated without distance variables proved poorly suitable when distance variables were also considered. We concluded that distances to resources are determinant in the way bats forage across the landscape, and that using distance variables substantially improves the accuracy of suitability maps generated with spatially explicit models. Consequently, modelling with these variables is important to guide habitat management in bats and similarly mobile animals, particularly if they are central-place foragers or depend on spatially scarce resources.
Bethany A Stahl
Full Text Available Cave animals, compared to surface-dwelling relatives, tend to have reduced eyes and pigment, longer appendages, and enhanced mechanosensory structures. Pressing questions include how certain cave-related traits are gained and lost, and if they originate through the same or different genetic programs in independent lineages. An excellent system for exploring these questions is the isopod, Asellus aquaticus. This species includes multiple cave and surface populations that have numerous morphological differences between them. A key feature is that hybrids between cave and surface individuals are viable, which enables genetic crosses and linkage analyses. Here, we advance this system by analyzing single animal transcriptomes of Asellus aquaticus. We use high throughput sequencing of non-normalized cDNA derived from the head of a surface-dwelling male, the head of a cave-dwelling male, the head of a hybrid male (produced by crossing a surface individual with a cave individual, and a pooled sample of surface embryos and hatchlings. Assembling reads from surface and cave head RNA pools yielded an integrated transcriptome comprised of 23,984 contigs. Using this integrated assembly as a reference transcriptome, we aligned reads from surface-, cave- and hybrid- head tissue and pooled surface embryos and hatchlings. Our approach identified 742 SNPs and placed four new candidate genes to an existing linkage map for A. aquaticus. In addition, we examined SNPs for allele-specific expression differences in the hybrid individual. All of these resources will facilitate identification of genes and associated changes responsible for cave adaptation in A. aquaticus and, in concert with analyses of other species, will inform our understanding of the evolutionary processes accompanying adaptation to the subterranean environment.
Bonaccorso, Frank; Montoya-Aiona, Kristina; Pinzari, Corinna A.; Todd, Christopher M.
We examine altitudinal movements involving unusual use of caves by Hawaiian hoary bats, Lasiurus cinereus semotus, during winter and spring in the Mauna Loa Forest Reserve (MLFR), Hawai‘i Island. Acoustic detection of hoary bat vocalizations, were recorded with regularity outside 13 lava tube cave entrances situated between 2,200 to 3,600 m asl from November 2012 to April 2013. Vocalizations were most numerous in November and December with the number of call events and echolocation pulses decreasing through the following months. Bat activity was positively correlated with air temperature and negatively correlated with wind speed. Visual searches found no evidence of hibernacula nor do Hawaiian hoary bats appear to shelter by day in these caves. Nevertheless, bats fly deep into caves as evidenced by numerous carcasses found in cave interiors. The occurrence of feeding buzzes around cave entrances and visual observations of bats flying in acrobatic fashion in cave interiors point to the use of these spaces as foraging sites. Peridroma moth species (Noctuidae), the only abundant nocturnal, flying insect sheltering in large numbers in rock rubble and on cave walls in the MLFR, apparently serve as the principal prey attracting hoary bats during winter to lava tube caves in the upper MLFR. Caves above 3,000 m on Mauna Loa harbor temperatures suitable for Pseudogymnoascus destructansfungi, the causative agent of White-nose Syndrome that is highly lethal to some species of North American cave-dwelling bats. We discuss the potential for White-nose Syndrome to establish and affect Hawaiian hoary bats.
Full Text Available Scientific exploration of marine cave environments and anchialine ecosystems over recent decades has led to outstanding discoveries of novel taxa, increasing our knowledge of biodiversity. However, biological research on underwater caves has taken place only in a few areas of the world and relevant information remains fragmented in isolated publications and databases. This fragmentation makes assessing the conservation status of marine cave species especially problematic, and this issue should be addressed urgently given the stresses resulting from planned and rampant development in the coastal zone worldwide. The goal of the World Register of marine Cave Species (WoRCS initiative is to create a comprehensive taxonomic and ecological database of known species from marine caves and anchialine systems worldwide and to present this as a Thematic Species Database (TSD of the World Register of marine Species (WoRMS. WoRCS will incorporate ecological data (e.g., type of environment, salinity regimes, and cave zone as well as geographical information on the distribution of species in cave and anchialine environments. Biodiversity data will be progressively assembled from individual database sources at regional, national or local levels, as well as from literature sources (estimate: >20,000 existing records of cave-dwelling species scattered in several databases. Information will be organized in the WoRCS database following a standard glossary based on existing terminology. Cave-related information will be managed by the WoRCS thematic editors with all data dynamically linked to WoRMS and its team of taxonomic editors. In order to mobilize data into global biogeographic databases, a Gazetteer of the Marine and Anchialine Caves of the World will be established. The presence records of species could be eventually georeferenced for submission to the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS and constitute an important dataset for biogeographical and
Yamamoto, Yoshiyuki; Byerly, Mardi S; Jackman, William R; Jeffery, William R
This study addresses the role of sonic hedgehog (shh) in increasing oral-pharyngeal constructive traits (jaws and taste buds) at the expense of eyes in the blind cavefish Astyanax mexicanus. In cavefish embryos, eye primordia degenerate under the influence of hyperactive Shh signaling. In concert, cavefish show amplified jaw size and taste bud numbers as part of a change in feeding behavior. To determine whether pleiotropic effects of hyperactive Shh signaling link these regressive and constructive traits, shh expression was compared during late development of the surface-dwelling (surface fish) and cave-dwelling (cavefish) forms of Astyanax. After an initial expansion along the midline of early embryos, shh was elevated in the oral-pharyngeal region in cavefish and later was confined to taste buds. The results of shh inhibition and overexpression experiments indicate that Shh signaling has an important role in oral and taste bud development. Conditional overexpression of an injected shh transgene at specific times in development showed that taste bud amplification and eye degeneration are sensitive to shh overexpression during the same early developmental period, although taste buds are not formed until much later. Genetic crosses between cavefish and surface fish revealed an inverse relationship between eye size and jaw size/taste bud number, supporting a link between oral-pharyngeal constructive traits and eye degeneration. The results suggest that hyperactive Shh signaling increases oral and taste bud amplification in cavefish at the expense of eyes. Therefore, selection for constructive oral-pharyngeal traits may be responsible for eye loss during cavefish evolution via pleiotropic function of the Shh signaling pathway.
Tokonami, Shinji; Ishikawa, Tetsuo; Sorimachi, Atsuyuki; Kobayashi, Yosuke; Yoshinaga, Shinji; Quanfu, Sun; Akiba, Suminori
Full text: The WHO launched an international radon project in January, 2005 because two major scientific articles on the residential-radon-and-lung-cancer risk have been published. Furthermore, the ICRP has just issued a new recommendation (Publ. 103). In the publication, radon issues have been mentioned using these references. They show that there is a significant correlation between radon exposures and lung cancer risks even with a somewhat lower radon concentration than an internationally recommended level (200 Bq m -3 ). In most cases, residential radon concentrations were measured by passive integrating radon monitors based on the alpha track detection techniques in their studies. We examined detection responses for the presence of thoron with some typical alpha track detectors (Kf K: Germany, Radtrak: USA and NRPB: UK), which were widely used in many epidemiological studies. In addition, we measured indoor radon and thoron concentrations in cave dwellings in Gansu Province, China, in which the National Cancer Institute (NCI) conducted a large-scale epidemiological study. The NCI concluded that there was also a significant correlation between the two aforementioned parameters, which was a similar value to recently acceptable one. However, our results on radon concentrations were obviously different from them because there was much thoron in that area. The present study demonstrates whether these risk factors are really correct throughout our data or not. Tokonami (2005) has pointed out that some of popular alpha track detectors are sensitive to thoron ( 220 Rn). This finding implies that radon readings will be overestimated and consequently may lead to biased estimates of lung cancer risk. The present study describes thoron interference on accurate radon measurements from the viewpoint of both experimental studies and field experiences. (author)
Full Text Available We investigated filarial infection in Malagasy bats to gain insights into the diversity of these parasites and explore the factors shaping their distribution. Samples were obtained from 947 individual bats collected from 52 sites on Madagascar and representing 31 of the 44 species currently recognized on the island. Samples were screened for the presence of micro- and macro-parasites through both molecular and morphological approaches. Phylogenetic analyses showed that filarial diversity in Malagasy bats formed three main groups, the most common represented by Litomosa spp. infecting Miniopterus spp. (Miniopteridae; a second group infecting Pipistrellus cf. hesperidus (Vespertilionidae embedded within the Litomosoides cluster, which is recognized herein for the first time from Madagascar; and a third group composed of lineages with no clear genetic relationship to both previously described filarial nematodes and found in M. griveaudi, Myotis goudoti, Neoromicia matroka (Vespertilionidae, Otomops madagascariensis (Molossidae, and Paratriaenops furculus (Hipposideridae. We further analyzed the infection rates and distribution pattern of Litomosa spp., which was the most diverse and prevalent filarial taxon in our sample. Filarial infection was disproportionally more common in males than females in Miniopterus spp., which might be explained by some aspect of roosting behavior of these cave-dwelling bats. We also found marked geographic structure in the three Litomosa clades, mainly linked to bioclimatic conditions rather than host-parasite associations. While this study demonstrates distinct patterns of filarial nematode infection in Malagasy bats and highlights potential drivers of associated geographic distributions, future work should focus on their alpha taxonomy and characterize arthropod vectors.
D' Eliscu, P.N.
Physiological and behavioral effects of methanol, ethanol, indolene, and formaldehyde emissions on selected arthropods are related to different relative organismic activities, metabolic rates, and respiratory demands. Various species of important pollinators, predators, and nutrient-cycling insects and arachnids respond differently to tailpipe and elevated levels of emissions. A gradient of responses is related to metabolism and trophic niche. Orders tested included various Hymenoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, Odonata, Orthoptera, Coleoptera, Collembola, Thysanura, Araneae, Acarina, and Opiliones. Responses included narcosis, spatial disorientation, cardiac arrhythmia, flight muscle and walking leg dysfunction, decreased feeding efficiency and prey capture success ratios, and increased positive thigmotaxis. Tolerance appears to be inversely related to oxygen demand of the arthropods tested, with active fliers most susceptible, weak fliers midscale, and non-fliers most tolerant. Electronic monitoring of heart, brain, and muscle characteristics suggests neuronal and neurosynaps disruptions from alcohols and formaldehyde, and neuromuscular effects from indolene in most arthropods tested.
Dunlop, Jason A.
Full Text Available The first fossil cyphophthalmid harvestman (Opiliones: Cyphophthalmi from Palaeogene (Eocene Baltic amber is described. This is only the third fossil example of this basal harvestman lineage; the others being from the probably slightly younger Bitterfeld amber and the much older, early Cretaceous, Myanmar (Burmese amber. Although incomplete and lacking most of the appendages, the new Baltic amber fossil can be identified as a female. The somatic characters preserved, especially spiracle morphology and the coxo-genital region, allow it to be assigned with some confidence to the extant genus Siro Latreille, 1796 (Sironidae. This fossil is formally described here as Siro balticus sp. nov. It resembles modern North American Siro species more than modern European ones, and can be distinguished principally on its relatively large size and the outline form of the body.
Madzaric, Suzana; Ceglie, F G; Depalo, L; Al Bitar, L; Mimiola, G; Tittarelli, F; Burgio, G
Organic greenhouse (OGH) production is characterized by different systems and agricultural practices with diverse environmental impact. Soil arthropods are widely used as bioindicators of ecological sustainability in open field studies, while there is a lack of research on organic production for protected systems. This study assessed the soil arthropod abundance and diversity over a 2-year crop rotation in three systems of OGH production in the Mediterranean. The systems under assessment differed in soil fertility management: SUBST - a simplified system of organic production, based on an input substitution approach (use of guano and organic liquid fertilizers), AGROCOM - soil fertility mainly based on compost application and agroecological services crops (ASC) cultivation (tailored use of cover crops) as part of crop rotation, and AGROMAN - animal manure and ASC cultivation as part of crop rotation. Monitoring of soil fauna was performed by using pitfall traps and seven taxa were considered: Carabidae, Staphylinidae, Araneae, Opiliones, Isopoda, Myriapoda, and Collembola. Results demonstrated high potential of ASC cultivation as a technique for beneficial soil arthropod conservation in OGH conditions. SUBST system was dominated by Collembola in all crops, while AGROMAN and AGROCOM had more balanced relative abundance of Isopoda, Staphylinidae, and Aranea. Opiliones and Myriapoda were more affected by season, while Carabidae were poorly represented in the whole monitoring period. Despite the fact that all three production systems are in accordance with the European Union regulation on organic farming, findings of this study displayed significant differences among them and confirmed the suitability of soil arthropods as bioindicators in protected systems of organic farming.
Bidwell, Joseph R.; Becker, C.; Hensley, S.; Stark, R.; Meyer, M.T.
found in caves and surface-water sites included brominated flame retardants, organochlorine pesticides (chlordane and nonachlor), and polychlorinated biphenyls. The placement of samplers in the caves (near the cave mouth compared to farther in the system) might have influenced the number of halogenated organics detected due to possible aerial transport of residues. Guano from cave-dwelling bats also might have been a source of some of these chlorinated organics. Seven-day survival and growth bioassays with fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) exposed to samples of cave water indicated initial toxicity in water from two of the caves, but these effects were transient, with no toxicity observed in follow-up tests. ??Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009.
Late Pleistocene leopards across Europe - northernmost European German population, highest elevated records in the Swiss Alps, complete skeletons in the Bosnia Herzegowina Dinarids and comparison to the Ice Age cave art
Diedrich, Cajus G.
European leopard sites in Europe demonstrate Early/Middle Pleistocene out of Africa lowland, and Late Pleistocene Asian alpine migrations being driven by climatic changes. Four different European Pleistocene subspecies are known. The final European Late Pleistocene “Ice Age leopard” Panthera pardus spelaea (Bächler, 1936) is validated taxonomically. The skull shows heavy signs of sexual dimorphism with closest cranial characters to the Caucasian Panthera pardus ciscaucasica (Persian leopard). Late Pleistocene leopards were distributed northernmost, up to S-England with the youngest stratigraphic records by skeletons and cave art in the MIS 2/3 (about 32,000-26,000 BP). The oldest leopard painting left by Late Palaeolithics (Aurignacians/Gravettians) in the Chauvet Cave (S-France) allows the reconstruction of the Ice Age leopard fur spot pattern being close to the snow or Caucasian leopards. The last Ice Age glacial leopard habitat was the mountain/alpine boreal forest (not mammoth steppe lowland), where those hunted even larger prey such as alpine game (Ibex, Chamois). Into some lairs, those imported their prey by short-term cave dwelling (e.g. Baumann's Cave, Harz Mountains, Germany). Only Eurasian Ice Age leopards specialized, similar as other Late Pleistocene large felids (steppe lions), on cave bear predation/scavenging partly very deep in caves. In Vjetrenica Cave (Dinarid Mountains, Bosnia Herzegovina), four adult leopards (two males/two females) of the MIS 3 were found about two km deep from the entrance in a cave bear den, near to one cave bear skeleton, that remained articulated in its nest. Leopards died there, partly being trapped by raising water levels of an active ponor stream, but seem to have been killed possibly either, similar as for lions known, in battles with cave bears in several cave bear den sites of Europe (e.g. Baumann's Cave, Wildkirchli Cave, Vjetrenica Cave). At other large cave sites, with overlap of hyena, wolf and dhole dens at
Fernandes, Vânia Filipa Lima; Macaspac, Christian; Lu, Louise; Yoshizawa, Masato
Many animal species exhibit laterality in sensation and behavioral responses, namely, the preference for using either the left or right side of the sensory system. For example, some fish use their left eye when observing social stimuli, whereas they use their right eye to observe novel objects. However, it is largely unknown whether such laterality in sensory-behavior coupling evolves during rapid adaptation processes. Here, in the Mexican tetra, Astyanax mexicanus, we investigate the laterality in the relationship between an evolved adaptive behavior, vibration attraction behavior (VAB), and its main sensors, mechanosensory neuromasts. A. mexicanus has a surface-dwelling form and cave-dwelling forms (cavefish), whereby a surface fish ancestor colonized the new environment of a cave, eventually evolving cave-type morphologies such as increased numbers of neuromasts at the cranium. These neuromasts are known to regulate VAB, and it is known that, in teleosts, the budding (increasing) process of neuromasts is accompanied with dermal bone formation. This bone formation is largely regulated by endothelin signaling. To assess the evolutionary relationship between bone formation, neuromast budding, and VAB, we treated 1-3 month old juvenile fish with endothelin receptor antagonists. This treatment significantly increased cranial neuromasts in both surface and cavefish, and the effect was significantly more pronounced in cavefish. Antagonist treatment also increased the size of dermal bones in cavefish, but neuromast enhancement was observed earlier than dermal bone formation, suggesting that endothelin signaling may independently regulate neuromast development and bone formation. In addition, although we did not detect a major change in VAB level under this antagonist treatment, cavefish did show a positive correlation of VAB with the number of neuromasts on their left side but not their right. This laterality in correlation was observed when VAB emerged during cavefish
Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to record the species of Antipatharia on Jamaican reefs and to carry out limited studies on densities and sizes of the common species.In addition,a cliff face created by dredging in 2002 provided the opportunity to study growth of newly settled colonies.Observations since 1998 and measurements since 2001 were made using SCUBA at depths down to 35 m.Seven species of Antipatharia were observed on steep coral reef escarpments below 25 m depth.The commonest species was the unbranched "wire coral " Stichopathes lutkeni .Other common species included the fan-shaped black corals Antipathes atlantica and A. gracilis .Frequently encountered species included commercially important A.caribbeana and a species with an unusual,scrambling growth form, A. rubusiformis.The other major commercial species in the Caribbean, Plumapathes pennacea ,and a cave-dwelling species,A.umbratica ,were rarely observed.Greatest black coral abundance occurred on steep slopes of hard substrata in low light intensity but exposed to the long-shore current. Combined densities of the commoner Antipatharia at 30 m deep at Rio Bueno on the north coast,ranged from 0.1 to 2.5 m-2 (eleven 10 m x 1 m belt transects,1-25 colonies per transect,68 colonies in total.Forty-six of the 68 colonies were S.lutkeni ,while nearby at Discovery Bay at 30-35 m,55 out of 59 colonies were S.lutkeni. There was a significant difference between the mean length of colonies in these two populations of S.lutkeni (100 cm and 80 cm,respectively,probably relating to habitat.A third population of S.lutkeni growing at 15-20 m deep on the recently dredged cliff had a much smaller mean length of 36.6 cm (n=27.The largest individual measured 83 cm long,indicating a minimum growth rate of the unbranched corallum of 2.1 mm per day.
Leandro T. Sabagh
Full Text Available A clear understanding of the relationships between overlapping, similarity, and competition is necessary to understand many of the questions about the structure and operation of a community. Rhinella icterica (Spix, 1824 and Rhinella crucifer (Wied Neuwied, 1821 are sympatric species of toads occurring in the National Park of Serra dos Órgãos in southeastern Brazil. The aim of the present study was to assess the dietary overlap of these two species. Ninety-four stomachs were analyzed, and 2245 prey items were found. Common prey were Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera larvae, Blattaria, Orthoptera, Hemiptera, Opiliones, and Aranaea. Ants were the most important prey in both diets, followed by beetles and cockroaches. The niche breadth of R. icterica was 1.76 and of R. crucifer was 1.28. The dietary overlap between the species was 98.62%. A positive correlation was observed between jaw width and prey size consumed by R. icterica.Um claro entendimento das relações entre sobreposição, similaridade e competição é necessário para entender muitas questões sobre a estrutura e o funcionamento de uma comunidade. Rhinella icterica (Spix, 1824 e Rhinella crucifer (Wied Neuwied, 1821 são espécies simpátricas que ocorrem no Parque Nacional da Serra dos Órgãos, região sudeste do Brasil. O objetivo do presente estudo foi verificar a sobreposição alimentar dessas duas espécies. Foram analisados 94 estômagos e encontradas 2245 presas. Os grupos comuns foram: Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, Diptera, larva de Lepidoptera, Blattaria, Orthoptera, Hemiptera, Opiliones e Aranaea. Formigas foram as presas mais importantes na dieta, seguidas por besouros e baratas. A amplitude de nicho de R. icterica foi de 1,76 e a de R. cruicifer 1,28. A sobreposição de nicho alimentar entre as espécies foi de 98,62%. Houve relação positiva entre a largura da mandíbula e a dimensão das presas consumidas em R. icterica.
Magalhaes, Marcelo R.L.; Franca, Elvis J.; Paiva, Jose D.S.; Hazin, Clovis A.; Fonseca, Felipe Y.; Fernandes, Elisabete A. de Nadai; Bacchi, Marcio A.
Among the biomonitors of environmental quality, there is a lack of studies on using invertebrates to evaluate quantitatively chemical elements in ecosystems. This group of animals is quite numerous, widely distributed and adaptable to the most diverse environmental conditions. These features are very useful for the environmental quality assessment, as well as the several occurring insect-plant interactions performing essential functions in ecosystems. The objective of this work is to study the variability of chemical composition of invertebrate orders for using in environmental quality monitoring studies. Instrumental neutron activation analysis - INAA was applied to determine some nutrients and trace elements in invertebrate samples. Sampling by pitfall traps was carried out in riverine ecosystems from the urban area from the Piracicaba Municipality, State of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Invertebrate and reference material samples were irradiated in the nuclear research reactor IEA-R1, Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares - IPEN/CNEN. Fragments of a Ni-Cr alloy were irradiated for monitoring the thermal neutron flux. Hymenoptera order was considered the most representative according to the total number of sampled species (about 60%). Significant amounts of Ba, Br, Fe and Sc were found in invertebrates of the order Opiliones. Potassium, rubidium and zinc were highly accumulated in species from Blattodea order, indicating a consistent pattern of accumulation for this invertebrate order. Taking into account the abundance of Hymenoptera order, the chemical composition of its species was significant different at the 95% confidence level for Br and Na in the sampled locals. (author)
Dunlop, Jason A; Garwood, Russell J
The Early Devonian Rhynie and Windyfield cherts remain a key locality for understanding early life and ecology on land. They host the oldest unequivocal nematode worm (Nematoda), which may also offer the earliest evidence for herbivory via plant parasitism. The trigonotarbids (Arachnida: Trigonotarbida) preserve the oldest book lungs and were probably predators that practiced liquid feeding. The oldest mites (Arachnida: Acariformes) are represented by taxa which include mycophages and predators on nematodes today. The earliest harvestman (Arachnida: Opiliones) includes the first preserved tracheae, and male and female genitalia. Myriapods are represented by a scutigeromorph centipede (Chilopoda: Scutigeromorpha), probably a cursorial predator on the substrate, and a putative millipede (Diplopoda). The oldest springtails (Hexapoda: Collembola) were probably mycophages, and another hexapod of uncertain affinities preserves a gut infill of phytodebris. The first true insects (Hexapoda: Insecta) are represented by a species known from chewing (non-carnivorous?) mandibles. Coprolites also provide insights into diet, and we challenge previous assumptions that several taxa were spore-feeders. Rhynie appears to preserve a largely intact community of terrestrial animals, although some expected groups are absent. The known fossils are (ecologically) consistent with at least part of the fauna found around modern Icelandic hot springs.This article is part of a discussion meeting issue 'The Rhynie cherts: our earliest terrestrial ecosystem revisited'. © 2017 The Author(s).
Magalhaes, Marcelo R.L.; Franca, Elvis J.; Paiva, Jose D.S.; Hazin, Clovis A., E-mail: email@example.com, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, E-mail: email@example.com, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org [Centro Regional de Ciencias Nucleares do Nordeste (CRCN-NE/CNEN-PE), Recife, PE (Brazil); Fonseca, Felipe Y.; Fernandes, Elisabete A. de Nadai; Bacchi, Marcio A., E-mail: email@example.com, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, E-mail: email@example.com [Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA/USP), Piracicaba, SP (Brazil)
Among the biomonitors of environmental quality, there is a lack of studies on using invertebrates to evaluate quantitatively chemical elements in ecosystems. This group of animals is quite numerous, widely distributed and adaptable to the most diverse environmental conditions. These features are very useful for the environmental quality assessment, as well as the several occurring insect-plant interactions performing essential functions in ecosystems. The objective of this work is to study the variability of chemical composition of invertebrate orders for using in environmental quality monitoring studies. Instrumental neutron activation analysis - INAA was applied to determine some nutrients and trace elements in invertebrate samples. Sampling by pitfall traps was carried out in riverine ecosystems from the urban area from the Piracicaba Municipality, State of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Invertebrate and reference material samples were irradiated in the nuclear research reactor IEA-R1, Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares - IPEN/CNEN. Fragments of a Ni-Cr alloy were irradiated for monitoring the thermal neutron flux. Hymenoptera order was considered the most representative according to the total number of sampled species (about 60%). Significant amounts of Ba, Br, Fe and Sc were found in invertebrates of the order Opiliones. Potassium, rubidium and zinc were highly accumulated in species from Blattodea order, indicating a consistent pattern of accumulation for this invertebrate order. Taking into account the abundance of Hymenoptera order, the chemical composition of its species was significant different at the 95% confidence level for Br and Na in the sampled locals. (author)
Gonçalves, Maria Fátima; Pereira, José Alberto
Arthropods are part of important functional groups in soil food webs. Recognizing these arthropods and understanding their function in the ecosystem as well as when they are active is essential to understanding their roles. In the present work, the abundance and diversity of soil arthropods is examined in olive groves in the northeast region of Portugal during the spring. Five classes of arthropods were found: Chilopoda, Malacostraca, Entognatha, Insecta, and Arachnida. Captures were numerically dominated by Collembola within Entognatha, representing 70.9% of total captures. Arachnida and Insecta classes represented about 20.4 and 9.0%, respectively. Among the predatory arthropods, the most representative groups were Araneae and Opiliones from Arachnida, and Formicidae, Carabidae, and Staphylinidae from Insecta. From the Formicidae family, Tetramorium semilaeve (Andre 1883), Tapinoma nigerrimum (Nylander 1856), and Crematogaster scutellaris (Olivier 1792) were the most representative ant species. Arthropods demonstrated preference during the day, with 74% of the total individuals recovered in this period, although richness and similarity were analogous during the day and night.
Full Text Available Arachnids (Chelicerata: Arachnida were collected in the Ndumo Game Reserve (Maputaland, South Africa during 11 collecting trips in the period 2000–2006. Sampling was undertaken by various methods in eight broad habitat types: Acacia tortilis savanna; Acacia xanthophloea (fever tree forests; deciduous broadleaf woodland; Ficus (wild fig tree forests; floodplain vegetation; riparian forest; sand forest; and subtropical bush. In total, 457 species of arachnids were collected, representing six orders, 59 families and 240 determined genera. The most diverse order was the Araneae (46 families, 431 spp., followed by the Pseudoscorpiones (6 families, 12 spp., Scorpiones (3 families, 8 spp., Opiliones (2 families, 3 spp., Solifugae (1 family, 2 spp. and Amblypygi (a single species. The most diverse families all belonged to the Araneae: Salticidae (82 spp., Thomisidae (56 spp. and Araneidae (38 spp.. The spider diversity is the highest recorded from any protected area in South Africa so far, and represents approximately 22 % of the country’s spider fauna. The habitat and guild associations of each species are provided.
Sabu, Thomas K.; Shiju, Raj T.; Vinod, KV.; Nithya, S.
Little is known about the ground-dwelling arthropod diversity in tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF). Due to unique habitat conditions in TMCFs with continuously wet substrates and a waterlogged forest floor along with the innate biases of the pitfall trap, Berlese funnel and Winkler extractor are certain to make it difficult to choose the most appropriate method to sample the ground-dwelling arthropods in TMCFs. Among the three methods, the Winkler extractor was the most efficient method for quantitative data and pitfall trapping for qualitative data for most groups. Inclusion of floatation method as a complementary method along with the Winkler extractor would enable a comprehensive quantitative survey of ground-dwelling arthropods. Pitfall trapping is essential for both quantitative and qualitative sampling of Diplopoda, Opiliones, Orthoptera, and Diptera. The Winkler extractor was the best quantitative method for Psocoptera, Araneae, Isopoda, and Formicidae; and the Berlese funnel was best for Collembola and Chilopoda. For larval forms of different insect orders and the Acari, all the three methods were equally effective. PMID:21529148
Ballman, Elissa S; Collins, Judith A; Drummond, Francis A
Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura; Diptera: Drosophilidae) is an invasive vinegar fly and pest of soft fruits in North America, including wild blueberries (Vaccinium angustifolium Aiton) in Maine. Despite its presence in the continental United States for 9 yr, little is known about its natural enemy complex. Here we report the results of a 3-yr study designed to identify naturally-occurring predators in Maine's wild blueberry fields. Experiments were conducted to determine pupation site and pupation depth to understand D. suzukii's predation vulnerability. Predation rates in the field of fully-exposed, caged, and buried pupae were measured. Pitfall traps were deployed to identify the potential predator assemblage, and laboratory experiments were conducted to determine how many pupae were consumed by commonly occurring ground beetle species (Carabidae) and field crickets (Gryllus pennsylvanicus Burmeister). The most commonly collected predators were ants, ground beetles, harvestmen, and field crickets. Significantly more pupae were found to occur in the soil compared to blueberry fruit, with most pupae in the top 0.5 cm layer of soil. Pupal predation rates in the field were high, with higher rates of predation on exposed pupae compared to buried pupae. Laboratory studies revealed that ground beetles and field crickets are likely predators of D. suzukii pupae. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vanderwolf, Karen J; Malloch, David; McAlpine, Donald F
The introduction of Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd) to North America, agent of white-nose syndrome in hibernating bats, has increased interest in fungi from underground habitats. While bats are assumed to be the main vector transmitting Pd cave-to-cave, the role of other fauna is unexplored. We documented the fungi associated with over-wintering arthropods in Pd-positive hibernacula, including sites where bats had been recently extirpated or near-extirpated, to determine if arthropods carried Pd, and to compare fungal assemblages on arthropods to bats. We isolated 87 fungal taxa in 64 genera from arthropods. Viable Pd was cultured from 15.3% of arthropods, most frequently from harvestmen (Nelima elegans). Fungal assemblages on arthropods were similar to those on bats. The different fungal assemblages documented among arthropods may be due to divergent patterns of movement, aggregation, feeding, or other factors. While it is unlikely that arthropods play a major role in the transmission dynamics of Pd, we demonstrate that arthropods may carry viable Pd spores and therefore have the potential to transport Pd, either naturally or anthropogenically, within or among hibernacula. This underlines the need for those entering hibernacula to observe decontamination procedures and for such procedures to evolve as our understanding of potential mechanisms of Pd dispersal improve.
Vanderwolf, Karen J.; Malloch, David; McAlpine, Donald F.
The introduction of Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd) to North America, agent of white-nose syndrome in hibernating bats, has increased interest in fungi from underground habitats. While bats are assumed to be the main vector transmitting Pd cave-to-cave, the role of other fauna is unexplored. We documented the fungi associated with over-wintering arthropods in Pd-positive hibernacula, including sites where bats had been recently extirpated or near-extirpated, to determine if arthropods carried Pd, and to compare fungal assemblages on arthropods to bats. We isolated 87 fungal taxa in 64 genera from arthropods. Viable Pd was cultured from 15.3% of arthropods, most frequently from harvestmen (Nelima elegans). Fungal assemblages on arthropods were similar to those on bats. The different fungal assemblages documented among arthropods may be due to divergent patterns of movement, aggregation, feeding, or other factors. While it is unlikely that arthropods play a major role in the transmission dynamics of Pd, we demonstrate that arthropods may carry viable Pd spores and therefore have the potential to transport Pd, either naturally or anthropogenically, within or among hibernacula. This underlines the need for those entering hibernacula to observe decontamination procedures and for such procedures to evolve as our understanding of potential mechanisms of Pd dispersal improve. PMID:27110827
Karen J. Vanderwolf
Full Text Available The introduction of Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd to North America, agent of white-nose syndrome in hibernating bats, has increased interest in fungi from underground habitats. While bats are assumed to be the main vector transmitting Pd cave-to-cave, the role of other fauna is unexplored. We documented the fungi associated with over-wintering arthropods in Pd-positive hibernacula, including sites where bats had been recently extirpated or near-extirpated, to determine if arthropods carried Pd, and to compare fungal assemblages on arthropods to bats. We isolated 87 fungal taxa in 64 genera from arthropods. Viable Pd was cultured from 15.3% of arthropods, most frequently from harvestmen (Nelima elegans. Fungal assemblages on arthropods were similar to those on bats. The different fungal assemblages documented among arthropods may be due to divergent patterns of movement, aggregation, feeding, or other factors. While it is unlikely that arthropods play a major role in the transmission dynamics of Pd, we demonstrate that arthropods may carry viable Pd spores and therefore have the potential to transport Pd, either naturally or anthropogenically, within or among hibernacula. This underlines the need for those entering hibernacula to observe decontamination procedures and for such procedures to evolve as our understanding of potential mechanisms of Pd dispersal improve.
Farzana Khan Perveen
Full Text Available The spiders (order: Aranae are an important environmental indicator and play a significant role as predators in biological control of the most of the key insect pests. The present study was conducted to establish the characteristics of the first recorded spider fauna from Sheringal, Dir Upper (DU, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP, Pakistan during June 2013-July 2014. Their 10 species belong to 7 families, and 10 genera (nt=123: total; ni=77: identified; nui=46: unidentified were recorded in the 6 quadrates, i.e., Daramdala, Doki, Guryaal, Samang, Shahoor and Sia-Sheringal of Sheringal. The largest family was Lycosidae (wolf spiders with respect to size and numbers of specimens collected (n=20, which contained Arctosa littorali Simon, 1897; Hippasa partita Takidar, 1970; Pardosa distincta Backwall, 1867, while the smallest family was Gnphosidae (ground spiders (n=3 with Gnaphosa eucalyptus Ghafoor and Beg, 2002; while other families Sparassidae (huntsman spiders (n=19 Halconia insignis Thorell, 1836, and Isopeda tuhogniga Barrion and Litsinger, 1995, Opilionidae (harvestmen spiders (n=12 Hadrobunus grandis Sundevall, 1833; Pholcidae (cellar spider (n=10 have Crossopriza lyoni Blackwall, 1867; Hersiliidae (two-tailed spiders (n=6 is having Harsilia savignyi Lucas, 1836; (n=5 with Araneus diadematus Clerck, 1757 were recorded. It was concluded that 50% of the spiders collected from the study area were venomous. A detail study is required for further exploration of spider fauna of Sheringal, KP, Pakistan with special reference to their taxonomical, physiological and ecological characteristics.
With more than 1 200 species, bats and flying foxes (Order Chiroptera) constitute the most important and diverse order of Mammals after Rodents. Many species of bats are insectivorous while others are frugivorous and few of them are hematophagous. Some of these animals fly during the night, others are crepuscular or diurnal. Some fly long distances during seasonal migrations. Many species are colonial cave-dwelling, living in a rather small home range while others are relatively solitary. However, in spite of the importance of bats for terrestrial biotic communities and ecosystem ecology, the diversity in their biology and lifestyles remain poorly known and underappreciated. More than sixty viruses have been detected or isolated in bats; these animals are therefore involved in the natural cycles of many of them. This is the case, for instance, of rabies virus and other Lyssavirus (Family Rhabdoviridae), Nipah and Hendra viruses (Paramyxoviridae), Ebola and Marburg viruses (Filoviridae), SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV (Coronaviridae). For these zoonotic viruses, a number of bat species are considered as important reservoir hosts, efficient disseminators or even directly responsible of the transmission. Some of these bat-borne viruses cause highly pathogenic diseases while others are of potential significance for humans and domestic or wild animals; so, bats are an important risk in human and animal public health. Moreover, some groups of viruses developed through different phylogenetic mechanisms of coevolution between viruses and bats. The fact that most of these viral infections are asymptomatic in bats has been observed since a long time but the mechanisms of the viral persistence are not clearly understood. The various bioecology of the different bat populations allows exchange of virus between migrating and non-migrating conspecific species. For a better understanding of the role of bats in the circulation of these viral zoonoses, epidemiologists must pay attention to
Full Text Available Artificial light at night (ALAN is a widespread alteration of the natural environment that can affect the functioning of ecosystems. ALAN can change the movement patterns of freshwater animals that move into the adjacent riparian and terrestrial ecosystems, but the implications for local riparian consumers that rely on these subsidies are still unexplored. We conducted a 2-year field experiment to quantify changes of freshwater-terrestrial linkages by installing streetlights in a previously light-naïve riparian area adjacent to an agricultural drainage ditch. We compared the abundance and community composition of emerging aquatic insects, flying insects, and ground-dwelling arthropods with an unlit control site. Comparisons were made within and between years using two-way generalized least squares (GLS model and a BACI design (Before-After Control-Impact. Aquatic insect emergence, the proportion of flying insects that were aquatic in origin, and the total abundance of flying insects all increased in the ALAN-illuminated area. The abundance of several night-active ground-dwelling predators (Pachygnatha clercki, Trochosa sp., Opiliones increased under ALAN and their activity was extended into the day. Conversely, the abundance of nocturnal ground beetles (Carabidae decreased under ALAN. The changes in composition of riparian predator and scavenger communities suggest that the increase in aquatic-to-terrestrial subsidy flux may cascade through the riparian food web. The work is among the first studies to experimentally manipulate ALAN using a large-scale field experiment, and provides evidence that ALAN can affect processes that link adjacent ecosystems. Given the large number of streetlights that are installed along shorelines of freshwater bodies throughout the globe, the effects could be widespread and represent an underestimated source of impairment for both aquatic and riparian systems.
Full Text Available The disjunct distribution of the harvestman Discocyrtus dilatatus (Opiliones, Gonyleptidae is used as a case study to test the hypothesis of a trans-Chaco Pleistocene paleobridge during range expansion stages. This would have temporarily connected humid regions ('Mesopotamia' in northeastern Argentina, and the 'Yungas' in the northwest, NWA in the subtropical and temperate South American lowlands. The present study combines two independent approaches: paleodistributional reconstruction, using the Species Distribution Modeling method MaxEnt and projection onto Quaternary paleoclimates (6 kya, 21 kya, 130 kya, and phylogeographic analyses based on the cytochrome oxidase subunit I molecular marker. Models predict a maximal shrinkage during the warm Last Interglacial (130 kya, and the rise of the hypothesized paleobridge in the Last Glacial Maximum (21 kya, revealing that cold-dry stages (not warm-humid ones, as supposed enabled the range expansion of this species. The disjunction was formed in the mid-Holocene (6 kya and is intensified under current conditions. The median-joining network shows that NWA haplotypes are peripherally related to different Mesopotamian lineages; haplotypes from Santa Fe and Córdoba Provinces consistently occupy central positions in the network. According to the dated phylogeny, Mesopotamia-NWA expansion events would have occurred in the last glacial period, in many cases closely associated to the Last Glacial Maximum, with most divergence events occurring shortly thereafter. Only two (out of nine NWA haplotypes are shared with Mesopotamian localities. A single, presumably relictual NWA haplotype was found to have diverged much earlier, suggesting an ancient expansion event not recoverable by the paleodistributional models. Different measures of sequence statistics, genetic diversity, population structure and history of demographic changes are provided. This research offers the first available evidence for the historical
Rivers, Ariel N; Mullen, Christina A; Barbercheck, Mary E
Agricultural practices affect arthropod communities and, therefore, have the potential to influence the activities of arthropods. We evaluated the effect of cover crop species and termination timing on the activity of ground-dwelling predatory arthropods in a corn-soybean-wheat rotation in transition to organic production in Pennsylvania, United States. We compared two cover crop treatments: 1) hairy vetch (Vicia villosa Roth) planted together with triticale (×Triticosecale Wittmack) after wheat harvest, and 2) cereal rye (Secale cereale Linnaeus) planted after corn harvest. We terminated the cover crops in the spring with a roller-crimper on three dates (early, middle, and late) based on cover crop phenology and standard practices for cash crop planting in our area. We characterized the ground-dwelling arthropod community using pitfall traps and assessed relative predation using sentinel assays with live greater waxworm larvae (Galleria mellonella Fabricius). The activity density of predatory arthropods was significantly higher in the hairy vetch and triticale treatments than in cereal rye treatments. Hairy vetch and triticale favored the predator groups Araneae, Opiliones, Staphylinidae, and Carabidae. Specific taxa were associated with cover crop condition (e.g., live or dead) and termination dates. Certain variables were positively or negatively associated with the relative predation on sentinel prey, depending on cover crop treatment and stage, including the presence of predatory arthropods and various habitat measurements. Our results suggest that management of a cover crop by roller-crimper at specific times in the growing season affects predator activity density and community composition. Terminating cover crops with a roller-crimper can conserve generalist predators.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Mitochondrial genomes are widely utilized for phylogenetic and population genetic analyses among animals. In addition to sequence data the mitochondrial gene order and RNA secondary structure data are used in phylogenetic analyses. Arachnid phylogeny is still highly debated and there is a lack of sufficient sequence data for many taxa. Ricinulei (hooded tickspiders are a morphologically distinct clade of arachnids with uncertain phylogenetic affinities. Results The first complete mitochondrial DNA genome of a member of the Ricinulei, Pseudocellus pearsei (Arachnida: Ricinulei was sequenced using a PCR-based approach. The mitochondrial genome is a typical circular duplex DNA molecule with a size of 15,099 bp, showing the complete set of genes usually present in bilaterian mitochondrial genomes. Five tRNA genes (trnW, trnY, trnN, trnL(CUN, trnV show different relative positions compared to other Chelicerata (e.g. Limulus polyphemus, Ixodes spp.. We propose that two events led to this derived gene order: (1 a tandem duplication followed by random deletion and (2 an independent translocation of trnN. Most of the inferred tRNA secondary structures show the common cloverleaf pattern except tRNA-Glu where the TψC-arm is missing. In phylogenetic analyses (maximum likelihood, maximum parsimony, Bayesian inference using concatenated amino acid and nucleotide sequences of protein-coding genes the basal relationships of arachnid orders remain unresolved. Conclusion Phylogenetic analyses (ML, MP, BI of arachnid mitochondrial genomes fail to resolve interordinal relationships of Arachnida and remain in a preliminary stage because there is still a lack of mitogenomic data from important taxa such as Opiliones and Pseudoscorpiones. Gene order varies considerably within Arachnida – only eight out of 23 species have retained the putative arthropod ground pattern. Some gene order changes are valuable characters in phylogenetic analysis of
Camilo I Mattoni
Full Text Available Autotomy, the voluntary shedding or detachment of a body part at a determined cleavage plane, is a common anti-predation defense mechanism in several animal taxa, including arthropods. Among arachnids, autotomy has been observed in harvestmen, mites, and spiders, always involving the loss of legs. Autotomy of the opisthosoma (abdomen was recently reported in a single species of the Neotropical buthid scorpion genus Ananteris Thorell, 1891, but few details were revealed. Based on observations in the field and laboratory, examination of material in museum collections, and scanning electron microscopy, we document autotomy of the metasoma (the hind part of the opisthosoma, or 'tail' in fourteen species of Ananteris. Autotomy is more common in males than females, and has not been observed in juveniles. When the scorpion is held by the metasoma, it is voluntarily severed at the joints between metasomal segments I and II, II and III, or III and IV, allowing the scorpion to escape. After detachment, the severed metasoma moves (twitches automatically, much like the severed tail of a lizard or the severed leg of a spider, and reacts to contact, even attempting to sting. The severed surface heals rapidly, scar tissue forming in five days. The lost metasomal segments and telson cannot be regenerated. Autotomy of the metasoma and telson results in permanent loss of the posterior part of the scorpion's digestive system (the anus is situated posteriorly on metasomal segment V and the ability to inject venom by stinging. After autotomy, scorpions do not defecate and can only capture small prey items. However, males can survive and mate successfully for up to eight months in the laboratory. In spite of diminished predation ability after autotomy, survival allows males to reproduce. Autotomy in Ananteris therefore appears to be an effective, adaptive, anti-predation escape mechanism.
Gosling, Laura; Sparks, Tim H; Araya, Yoseph; Harvey, Martin; Ansine, Janice
Hedges are both ecologically and culturally important and are a distinctive feature of the British landscape. However the overall length of hedges across Great Britain is decreasing. Current challenges in studying hedges relate to the dominance of research on rural, as opposed to urban, hedges, and their variability and geographical breadth. To help address these challenges and to educate the public on the importance of hedge habitats for wildlife, in 2010 the Open Air Laboratories (OPAL) programme coordinated a hedge-focused citizen science survey. Results from 2891 surveys were analysed. Woody plant species differed significantly between urban and rural areas. Beech, Holly, Ivy, Laurel, Privet and Yew were more commonly recorded in urban hedges whereas Blackthorn, Bramble, Dog Rose, Elder and Hawthorn were recorded more often in rural hedges. Urban and rural differences were shown for some groups of invertebrates. Ants, earwigs and shieldbugs were recorded more frequently in urban hedges whereas blowflies, caterpillars, harvestmen, other beetles, spiders and weevils were recorded more frequently in rural hedges. Spiders were the most frequently recorded invertebrate across all surveys. The presence of hard surfaces adjacent to the hedge was influential on hedge structure, number and diversity of plant species, amount of food available for wildlife and invertebrate number and diversity. In urban hedges with one adjacent hard surface, the food available for wildlife was significantly reduced and in rural hedges, one adjacent hard surface affected the diversity of invertebrates. This research highlights that urban hedges may be important habitats for wildlife and that hard surfaces may have an impact on both the number and diversity of plant species and the number and diversity of invertebrates. This study demonstrates that citizen science programmes that focus on hedge surveillance can work and have the added benefit of educating the public on the importance of
Full Text Available The spiders (Arthropoada: Arachenida are one of the groups of grasping animals. Their carapaces are found on the dorsal side of the cephalothorax, which is an important characteristic of spiders. The present study was conducted to explore the first recorded spider species (nti=75 of Sheringal, Dir Upper (DU, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP, Dir Upper, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The 10 genera with 10 species under 7 families were recorded from June 2013-July 2014. According to length of legs, the largest spider was the huntsman spider, Halconia insignis Thorell having length of the first leg was 1.9±0.20, however, the same of the last leg was 1.44±0.25 (n=9. In the same contest, the smallest spider was the ground spider, Gnaphosa eucalyptus Ghafoor and Beg having length of the first leg was 0.4±0.08, while the same of the last leg was 0.4±0.08 (n=3. According to length of cephalothorax and abdomen, the largest spider was the wolf spider, Hippasa partita Takidar having length of the cephalothorax was 1.1±0.01, however, the same of the abdomen was 0.7±0.1 (n=6. In the same contest, the smallest spider was the harvestmen, Hadrobunus grandis Sundevall having length of the cephalothorax was 0.1±0.04, while the same of the abdomen was 0.3±0.04 (n=12. During present research, 10 spider species of Sheringal with different sizes were explored. The present research will be useful to educate and create awareness about spiders in the people of Sheringal.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Oxygen transport in the hemolymph of many arthropod species is facilitated by large copper-proteins referred to as hemocyanins. Arthropod hemocyanins are hexamers or oligomers of hexamers, which are characterized by a high O2 transport capacity and a high cooperativity, thereby enhancing O2 supply. Hemocyanin subunit sequences had been available from horseshoe crabs (Xiphosura and various spiders (Araneae, but not from any other chelicerate taxon. To trace the evolution of hemocyanins and the emergence of the large hemocyanin oligomers, hemocyanin cDNA sequences were obtained from representatives of selected chelicerate classes. Results Hemocyanin subunits from a sea spider, a scorpion, a whip scorpion and a whip spider were sequenced. Hemocyanin has been lost in Opiliones, Pseudoscorpiones, Solifugae and Acari, which may be explained by the evolution of trachea (i.e., taxon Apulmonata. Bayesian phylogenetic analysis was used to reconstruct the evolution of hemocyanin subunits and a relaxed molecular clock approach was applied to date the major events. While the sea spider has a simple hexameric hemocyanin, four distinct subunit types evolved before Xiphosura and Arachnida diverged around 470 Ma ago, suggesting the existence of a 4 × 6mer at that time. Subsequently, independent gene duplication events gave rise to the other distinct subunits in each of the 8 × 6mer hemocyanin of Xiphosura and the 4 × 6mer of Arachnida. The hemocyanin sequences were used to infer the evolutionary history of chelicerates. The phylogenetic trees support a basal position of Pycnogonida, a sister group relationship of Xiphosura and Arachnida, and a sister group relationship of the whip scorpions and the whip spiders. Conclusion Formation of a complex hemocyanin oligomer commenced early in the evolution of euchelicerates. A 4 × 6mer hemocyanin consisting of seven subunit types is conserved in most arachnids since more than 400 Ma, although some
Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to record the species of Antipatharia on Jamaican reefs and to carry out limited studies on densities and sizes of the common species.In addition,a cliff face created by dredging in 2002 provided the opportunity to study growth of newly settled colonies.Observations since 1998 and measurements since 2001 were made using SCUBA at depths down to 35 m.Seven species of Antipatharia were observed on steep coral reef escarpments below 25 m depth.The commonest species was the unbranched "wire coral " Stichopathes lutkeni .Other common species included the fan-shaped black corals Antipathes atlantica and A. gracilis .Frequently encountered species included commercially important A.caribbeana and a species with an unusual,scrambling growth form, A. rubusiformis.The other major commercial species in the Caribbean, Plumapathes pennacea ,and a cave-dwelling species,A.umbratica ,were rarely observed.Greatest black coral abundance occurred on steep slopes of hard substrata in low light intensity but exposed to the long-shore current. Combined densities of the commoner Antipatharia at 30 m deep at Rio Bueno on the north coast,ranged from 0.1 to 2.5 m-2 (eleven 10 m x 1 m belt transects,1-25 colonies per transect,68 colonies in total.Forty-six of the 68 colonies were S.lutkeni ,while nearby at Discovery Bay at 30-35 m,55 out of 59 colonies were S.lutkeni. There was a significant difference between the mean length of colonies in these two populations of S.lutkeni (100 cm and 80 cm,respectively,probably relating to habitat.A third population of S.lutkeni growing at 15-20 m deep on the recently dredged cliff had a much smaller mean length of 36.6 cm (n=27.The largest individual measured 83 cm long,indicating a minimum growth rate of the unbranched corallum of 2.1 mm per day.El propósito de este estudio fue registrar las especies de Antipatharia en los arrecifes de Jamaica y realizar estudios preliminares sobre densidades y tama
Full Text Available Pseudoscorpions, given their resemblance to scorpions, have attracted human attention since the time of Aristotle, although they are much smaller and lack the sting and elongated tail. These arachnids have a long evolutionary history but their origins and phylogenetic affinities are still being debated. Here, we summarise their fossil record based on a comprehensive review of the literature and data contained in other sources. Pseudoscorpions are one of the oldest colonisers of the land, with fossils known since the Middle Devonian (ca. 390 Ma. The only arachnid orders with an older fossil record are scorpions, harvestmen and acariform mites, plus two extinct groups. Pseudoscorpions do not fossilise easily, and records from the Mesozoic and Cenozoic consist almost exclusively of amber inclusions. Most Mesozoic fossils come from Archingeay and Burmese ambers (Late Cretaceous and those from the Cenozoic are primarily from Eocene Baltic amber, although additional fossils from, for example, Miocene Dominican and Mexican ambers, are known. Overall, 16 of the 26 families of living pseudoscorpions have been documented from fossils and 49 currently valid species are recognised in the literature. Pseudoscorpions represent a case of morphological stasis and even the Devonian fossils look rather modern. Indeed, most amber fossils are comparable to Recent groups despite a major gap in the fossil record of almost 250 Myr. Baltic amber inclusions indicate palaeofauna inhabiting much warmer climates than today and point to climatic shifts in central Europe since the Eocene. They also indicate that some groups (e.g. Feaellidae and Pseudogarypidae had much wider Eocene distributions. Their present-day occurrence is relictual and highlights past extinction events. Faunas from younger tropical amber deposits (e.g. Dominican and Mexican amber are comparable to Recent ones. Generally, there is a strong bias in the amber record towards groups that live under tree