WorldWideScience

Sample records for community habitat evaluation

  1. Eder Acquisition 2007 Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    2008-01-01

    A habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis was conducted on the Eder acquisition in July 2007 to determine how many protection habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to acquire the project site as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph Dams. Baseline HEP surveys generated 3,857.64 habitat units or 1.16 HUs per acre. HEP surveys also served to document general habitat conditions. Survey results indicated that the herbaceous plant community lacked forbs species, which may be due to both livestock grazing and the late timing of the surveys. Moreover, the herbaceous plant community lacked structure based on lower than expected visual obstruction readings (VOR); likely a direct result of livestock impacts. In addition, introduced herbaceous vegetation including cultivated pasture grasses, e.g. crested wheatgrass and/or invader species such as cheatgrass and mustard, were present on most areas surveyed. The shrub element within the shrubsteppe cover type was generally a mosaic of moderate to dense shrubby areas interspersed with open grassland communities while the 'steppe' component was almost entirely devoid of shrubs. Riparian shrub and forest areas were somewhat stressed by livestock. Moreover, shrub and tree communities along the lower reaches of Nine Mile Creek suffered from lack of water due to the previous landowners 'piping' water out of the stream channel.

  2. Habitat loss and gain: Influence on habitat attractiveness for estuarine fish communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amorim, Eva; Ramos, Sandra; Elliott, Michael; Franco, Anita; Bordalo, Adriano A.

    2017-10-01

    Habitat structure and complexity influence the structuring and functioning of fish communities. Habitat changes are one of the main pressures affecting estuarine systems worldwide, yet the degree and rate of change and its impact on fish communities is still poorly understood. In order to quantify historical modifications in habitat structure, an ecohydrological classification system using physiotopes, i.e. units with homogenous abiotic characteristics, was developed for the lower Lima estuary (NW Portugal). Field data, aerial imagery, historical maps and interpolation methods were used to map input variables, including bathymetry, substratum (hard/soft), sediment composition, hydrodynamics (current velocity) and vegetation coverage. Physiotopes were then mapped for the years of 1933 and 2013 and the areas lost and gained over the 80 years were quantified. The implications of changes for the benthic and demersal fish communities using the lower estuary were estimated using the attractiveness to those communities of each physiotope, while considering the main estuarine habitat functions for fish, namely spawning, nursery, feeding and refuge areas and migratory routes. The lower estuary was highly affected due to urbanisation and development and, following a port/harbour expansion, its boundary moved seaward causing an increase in total area. Modifications led to the loss of most of its sandy and saltmarsh intertidal physiotopes, which were replaced by deeper subtidal physiotopes. The most attractive physiotopes for fish (defined as the way in which they supported the fish ecological features) decreased in area while less attractive ones increased, producing an overall lower attractiveness of the studied area in 2013 compared to 1933. The implications of habitat alterations for the fish using the estuary include potential changes in the nursery carrying capacity and the functioning of the fish community. The study also highlighted the poor knowledge of the impacts of

  3. Evaluation of Macroinvertebrate Communities and Habitat for Selected Stream Reaches at Los Alamos National Laboratory

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    L.J. Henne; K.J. Buckley

    2005-08-12

    This is the second aquatic biological monitoring report generated by Los Alamos National Laboratory's (LANL's) Water Quality and Hydrology Group. The study has been conducted to generate impact-based assessments of habitat and water quality for LANL waterways. The monitoring program was designed to allow for the detection of spatial and temporal trends in water and habitat quality through ongoing, biannual monitoring of habitat characteristics and benthic aquatic macroinvertebrate communities at six key sites in Los Alamos, Sandia, Water, Pajarito, and Starmer's Gulch Canyons. Data were collected on aquatic habitat characteristics, channel substrate, and macroinvertebrate communities during 2001 and 2002. Aquatic habitat scores were stable between 2001 and 2002 at all locations except Starmer's Gulch and Pajarito Canyon, which had lower scores in 2002 due to low flow conditions. Channel substrate changes were most evident at the upper Los Alamos and Pajarito study reaches. The macroinvertebrate Stream Condition Index (SCI) indicated moderate to severe impairment at upper Los Alamos Canyon, slight to moderate impairment at upper Sandia Canyon, and little or no impairment at lower Sandia Canyon, Starmer's Gulch, and Pajarito Canyon. Habitat, substrate, and macroinvertebrate data from the site in upper Los Alamos Canyon indicated severe impacts from the Cerro Grande Fire of 2000. Impairment in the macroinvertebrate community at upper Sandia Canyon was probably due to effluent-dominated flow at that site. The minimal impairment SCI scores for the lower Sandia site indicated that water quality improved with distance downstream from the outfall at upper Sandia Canyon.

  4. Habitat filtering across tree life stages in tropical forest communities

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    Baldeck, C. A.; Harms, K. E.; Yavitt, J. B.; John, R.; Turner, B. L.; Valencia, R.; Navarrete, H.; Bunyavejchewin, S.; Kiratiprayoon, S.; Yaacob, A.; Supardi, M. N. N.; Davies, S. J.; Hubbell, S. P.; Chuyong, G. B.; Kenfack, D.; Thomas, D. W.; Dalling, J. W.

    2013-01-01

    Tropical tree communities are shaped by local-scale habitat heterogeneity in the form of topographic and edaphic variation, but the life-history stage at which habitat associations develop remains poorly understood. This is due, in part, to the fact that previous studies have not accounted for the widely disparate sample sizes (number of stems) that result when trees are divided into size classes. We demonstrate that the observed habitat structuring of a community is directly related to the number of individuals in the community. We then compare the relative importance of habitat heterogeneity to tree community structure for saplings, juveniles and adult trees within seven large (24–50 ha) tropical forest dynamics plots while controlling for sample size. Changes in habitat structuring through tree life stages were small and inconsistent among life stages and study sites. Where found, these differences were an order of magnitude smaller than the findings of previous studies that did not control for sample size. Moreover, community structure and composition were very similar among tree sub-communities of different life stages. We conclude that the structure of these tropical tree communities is established by the time trees are large enough to be included in the census (1 cm diameter at breast height), which indicates that habitat filtering occurs during earlier life stages. PMID:23843384

  5. Coastal habitats as surrogates for taxonomic, functional and trophic structures of benthic faunal communities.

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    Törnroos, Anna; Nordström, Marie C; Bonsdorff, Erik

    2013-01-01

    Due to human impact, there is extensive degradation and loss of marine habitats, which calls for measures that incorporate taxonomic as well as functional and trophic aspects of biodiversity. Since such data is less easily quantifiable in nature, the use of habitats as surrogates or proxies for biodiversity is on the rise in marine conservation and management. However, there is a critical gap in knowledge of whether pre-defined habitat units adequately represent the functional and trophic structure of communities. We also lack comparisons of different measures of community structure in terms of both between- (β) and within-habitat (α) variability when accounting for species densities. Thus, we evaluated a priori defined coastal habitats as surrogates for traditional taxonomic, functional and trophic zoobenthic community structure. We focused on four habitats (bare sand, canopy-forming algae, seagrass above- and belowground), all easily delineated in nature and defined through classification systems. We analyzed uni- and multivariate data on species and trait diversity as well as stable isotope ratios of benthic macrofauna. A good fit between habitat types and taxonomic and functional structure was found, although habitats were more similar functionally. This was attributed to within-habitat heterogeneity so when habitat divisions matched the taxonomic structure, only bare sand was functionally distinct. The pre-defined habitats did not meet the variability of trophic structure, which also proved to differentiate on a smaller spatial scale. The quantification of trophic structure using species density only identified an epi- and an infaunal unit. To summarize the results we present a conceptual model illustrating the match between pre-defined habitat types and the taxonomic, functional and trophic community structure. Our results show the importance of including functional and trophic aspects more comprehensively in marine management and spatial planning.

  6. Deep-sea seabed habitats: Do they support distinct mega-epifaunal communities that have different vulnerabilities to anthropogenic disturbance?

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    Bowden, David A.; Rowden, Ashley A.; Leduc, Daniel; Beaumont, Jennifer; Clark, Malcolm R.

    2016-01-01

    Growing economic interest in seabed resources in the deep-sea highlights the need for information about the spatial distribution and vulnerability to disturbance of benthic habitats and fauna. Categorisation of seabed habitats for management is often based on topographic features such as canyons and seamounts that can be distinguished using regional bathymetry ('mega-habitats'). This is practical but because such habitats are contiguous with others, there is potential for overlap in the communities associated with them. Because concepts of habitat and community vulnerability are based on the traits of individual taxa, the nature and extent of differences between communities have implications for strategies to manage the environmental effects of resource use. Using towed video camera transects, we surveyed mega-epifaunal communities of three topographically-defined habitats (canyon, seamount or knoll, and continental slope) and two physico-chemically defined meso-scale habitats (cold seep and hydrothermal vent) in two regions off New Zealand to assess whether each supports a distinct type of community. Cold seep and hydrothermal vent communities were strongly distinct from those in other habitats. Across the other habitats, however, distinctions between communities were often weak and were not consistent between regions. Dissimilarities among communities across all habitats were stronger and the density of filter-feeding taxa was higher in the Bay of Plenty than on the Hikurangi Margin, whereas densities of predatory and scavenging taxa were higher on the Hikurangi Margin. Substratum diversity at small spatial scales (the general utility of topographically-defined mega-habitats in environmental management, (2) fine-scale survey of individual features is necessary to identify the locations, characteristics, and extents of ecologically important or vulnerable seabed communities, and (3) evaluation of habitat vulnerability to future events should be in the context of

  7. Interactive effects of temperature and habitat complexity on freshwater communities.

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    Scrine, Jennifer; Jochum, Malte; Ólafsson, Jón S; O'Gorman, Eoin J

    2017-11-01

    Warming can lead to increased growth of plants or algae at the base of the food web, which may increase the overall complexity of habitat available for other organisms. Temperature and habitat complexity have both been shown to alter the structure and functioning of communities, but they may also have interactive effects, for example, if the shade provided by additional habitat negates the positive effect of temperature on understory plant or algal growth. This study explored the interactive effects of these two major environmental factors in a manipulative field experiment, by assessing changes in ecosystem functioning (primary production and decomposition) and community structure in the presence and absence of artificial plants along a natural stream temperature gradient of 5-18°C. There was no effect of temperature or habitat complexity on benthic primary production, but epiphytic production increased with temperature in the more complex habitat. Cellulose decomposition rate increased with temperature, but was unaffected by habitat complexity. Macroinvertebrate communities were less similar to each other as temperature increased, while habitat complexity only altered community composition in the coldest streams. There was also an overall increase in macroinvertebrate abundance, body mass, and biomass in the warmest streams, driven by increasing dominance of snails and blackfly larvae. Presence of habitat complexity, however, dampened the strength of this temperature effect on the abundance of macroinvertebrates in the benthos. The interactive effects that were observed suggest that habitat complexity can modify the effects of temperature on important ecosystem functions and community structure, which may alter energy flow through the food web. Given that warming is likely to increase habitat complexity, particularly at higher latitudes, more studies should investigate these two major environmental factors in combination to improve our ability to predict the

  8. Feedbacks between community assembly and habitat selection shape variation in local colonization

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    Kraus, J.M.; Vonesh, J.R.

    2010-01-01

    1. Non-consumptive effects of predators are increasingly recognized as important drivers of community assembly and structure. Specifically, habitat selection responses to top predators during colonization and oviposition can lead to large differences in aquatic community structure, composition and diversity. 2. These differences among communities due to predators may develop as communities assemble, potentially altering the relative quality of predator vs. predator-free habitats through time. If so, community assembly would be expected to modify the subsequent behavioural responses of colonists to habitats containing top predators. Here, we test this hypothesis by manipulating community assembly and the presence of fish in experimental ponds and measuring their independent and combined effects on patterns of colonization by insects and amphibians. 3. Assembly modified habitat selection of dytscid beetles and hylid frogs by decreasing or even reversing avoidance of pools containing blue-spotted sunfish (Enneacanthus gloriosus). However, not all habitat selection responses to fish depended on assembly history. Hydrophilid beetles and mosquitoes avoided fish while chironomids were attracted to fish pools, regardless of assembly history. 4. Our results show that community assembly causes taxa-dependent feedbacks that can modify avoidance of habitats containing a top predator. Thus, non-consumptive effects of a top predator on community structure change as communities assemble and effects of competitors and other predators combine with the direct effects of top predators to shape colonization. 5. This work reinforces the importance of habitat selection for community assembly in aquatic systems, while illustrating the range of factors that may influence colonization rates and resulting community structure. Directly manipulating communities both during colonization and post-colonization is critical for elucidating how sequential processes interact to shape communities.

  9. Habitat heterogeneity and connectivity shape microbial communities in South American peatlands.

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    Oloo, Felix; Valverde, Angel; Quiroga, María Victoria; Vikram, Surendra; Cowan, Don; Mataloni, Gabriela

    2016-05-10

    Bacteria play critical roles in peatland ecosystems. However, very little is known of how habitat heterogeneity affects the structure of the bacterial communities in these ecosystems. Here, we used amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA and nifH genes to investigate phylogenetic diversity and bacterial community composition in three different sub-Antarctic peat bog aquatic habitats: Sphagnum magellanicum interstitial water, and water from vegetated and non-vegetated pools. Total and putative nitrogen-fixing bacterial communities from Sphagnum interstitial water differed significantly from vegetated and non-vegetated pool communities (which were colonized by the same bacterial populations), probably as a result of differences in water chemistry and biotic interactions. Total bacterial communities from pools contained typically aquatic taxa, and were more dissimilar in composition and less species rich than those from Sphagnum interstitial waters (which were enriched in taxa typically from soils), probably reflecting the reduced connectivity between the former habitats. These results show that bacterial communities in peatland water habitats are highly diverse and structured by multiple concurrent factors.

  10. Habitat heterogeneity and connectivity shape microbial communities in South American peatlands

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    Oloo, Felix; Valverde, Angel; Quiroga, María Victoria; Vikram, Surendra; Cowan, Don; Mataloni, Gabriela

    2016-01-01

    Bacteria play critical roles in peatland ecosystems. However, very little is known of how habitat heterogeneity affects the structure of the bacterial communities in these ecosystems. Here, we used amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA and nifH genes to investigate phylogenetic diversity and bacterial community composition in three different sub-Antarctic peat bog aquatic habitats: Sphagnum magellanicum interstitial water, and water from vegetated and non-vegetated pools. Total and putative nitrogen-fixing bacterial communities from Sphagnum interstitial water differed significantly from vegetated and non-vegetated pool communities (which were colonized by the same bacterial populations), probably as a result of differences in water chemistry and biotic interactions. Total bacterial communities from pools contained typically aquatic taxa, and were more dissimilar in composition and less species rich than those from Sphagnum interstitial waters (which were enriched in taxa typically from soils), probably reflecting the reduced connectivity between the former habitats. These results show that bacterial communities in peatland water habitats are highly diverse and structured by multiple concurrent factors. PMID:27162086

  11. Distinct Habitats Select Particular Bacterial Communities in Mangrove Sediments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidianne L. Rocha

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the relationship among environmental variables, composition, and structure of bacterial communities in different habitats in a mangrove located nearby to an oil exploitation area, aiming to retrieve the natural pattern of bacterial communities in this ecosystem. The T-RFLP analysis showed a high diversity of bacterial populations and an increase in the bacterial richness from habitats closer to the sea and without vegetation (S1 to habitats covered by Avicennia schaueriana (S2 and Rhizophora mangle (S3. Environmental variables in S1 and S2 were more similar than in S3; however, when comparing the bacterial compositions, S2 and S3 shared more OTUs between them, suggesting that the presence of vegetation is an important factor in shaping these bacterial communities. In silico analyses of the fragments revealed a high diversity of the class Gammaproteobacteria in the 3 sites, although in general they presented quite different bacterial composition, which is probably shaped by the specificities of each habitat. This study shows that microhabitats inside of a mangrove ecosystem harbor diverse and distinct microbiota, reinforcing the need to conserve these ecosystems as a whole.

  12. Distinct Habitats Select Particular Bacterial Communities in Mangrove Sediments

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    Rocha, Lidianne L.; Colares, Geórgia B.; Nogueira, Vanessa L. R.; Paes, Fernanda A.; Melo, Vânia M. M.

    2016-01-01

    We investigated the relationship among environmental variables, composition, and structure of bacterial communities in different habitats in a mangrove located nearby to an oil exploitation area, aiming to retrieve the natural pattern of bacterial communities in this ecosystem. The T-RFLP analysis showed a high diversity of bacterial populations and an increase in the bacterial richness from habitats closer to the sea and without vegetation (S1) to habitats covered by Avicennia schaueriana (S2) and Rhizophora mangle (S3). Environmental variables in S1 and S2 were more similar than in S3; however, when comparing the bacterial compositions, S2 and S3 shared more OTUs between them, suggesting that the presence of vegetation is an important factor in shaping these bacterial communities. In silico analyses of the fragments revealed a high diversity of the class Gammaproteobacteria in the 3 sites, although in general they presented quite different bacterial composition, which is probably shaped by the specificities of each habitat. This study shows that microhabitats inside of a mangrove ecosystem harbor diverse and distinct microbiota, reinforcing the need to conserve these ecosystems as a whole. PMID:26989418

  13. Macrofaunal communities associated with chemosynthetic habitats from the U.S. Atlantic margin: A comparison among depth and habitat types

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    Bourque, Jill R.; Robertson, Craig M.; Brooke, Sandra; Demopoulos, Amanda W.J.

    2016-01-01

    Hydrocarbon seeps support distinct benthic communities capable of tolerating extreme environmental conditions and utilizing reduced chemical compounds for nutrition. In recent years, several locations of methane seepage have been mapped along the U.S. Atlantic continental slope. In 2012 and 2013, two newly discovered seeps were investigated in this region: a shallow site near Baltimore Canyon (BCS, 366–412 m) and a deep site near Norfolk Canyon (NCS, 1467–1602 m), with both sites containing extensive chemosynthetic mussel bed and microbial mat habitats. Sediment push cores, suction samples, and Ekman box cores were collected to quantify the abundance, diversity, and community structure of benthic macrofauna (>300 μm) in mussel beds, mats, and slope habitats at both sites. Community data from the deep site were also assessed in relation to the associated sediment environment (organic carbon and nitrogen, stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes, grain size, and depth). Infaunal assemblages and densities differed both between depths and among habitat types. Macrofaunal densities in microbial mats were four times greater than those present in mussel beds and slope sediments and were dominated by the annelid families Dorvilleidae, Capitellidae, and Tubificidae, while mussel habitats had higher proportions of crustaceans. Diversity was lower in BCS microbial mat habitats, but higher in mussel and slope sediments compared to NCS habitats. Multivariate statistical analysis revealed specific sediment properties as important for distinguishing the macrofaunal communities, including larger grain sizes present within NCS microbial mat habitats and depleted stable carbon isotopes (δ13C) in sediments present at mussel beds. These results suggest that habitat differences in the quality and source of organic matter are driving the observed patterns in the infaunal assemblages, including high β diversity and high variability in the macrofaunal community composition. This

  14. Evaluation of nekton use and habitat characteristics of restored Louisiana marsh

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    Thom, C.S.B.; Peyre, M.K.G.L.; Nyman, J.A.

    2004-01-01

    Marsh terracing and coconut fiber mats are two wetland restoration techniques implemented at Sabine National Wildlife Refuge, Louisiana, USA. Using nekton as an indicator of habitat quality, nekton community assemblages were compared between terraced, coconut-matted, unmanaged marsh (restoration goal), and open water (pre-restoration) habitats. Using a throw trap and a 3 m ?? 2 m straight seine, 192 nekton samples were collected over four dates in 2001 and 2002 at all habitats. Nekton abundance was similar at unmanaged marsh (restoration goal), coconut mat, and terrace edge, and significantly higher than at open water (pre-restoration) sites (P Coconut-matted habitat and unmanaged marsh edges had significantly higher numbers of benthic dependent species than terrace edges (P coconut-matted sites. Future restoration projects may evaluate the combined use of coconut mats with terracing projects in order to enhance habitat for benthic dependent nekton.

  15. Habitat differences in deep-sea megafaunal communities off New Zealand: implications for vulnerability to anthropogenic disturbance and management

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    Ashley Alun Rowden

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Research on benthic communities in the deep sea has focused largely on habitats in isolation, with few studies considering multiple habitats simultaneously in a comparable manner. The present study aimed to determine the structural differences in benthic communities of continental slope, seamount, canyon, vent, and seep habitats, and assess their relative vulnerabilities to disturbance from bottom trawling and potential seabed mining. Megafaunal invertebrate communities of these habitats were sampled in two regions off New Zealand, in four depth strata between 700 and 1500 m, using an epibenthic sled and a beam trawl. Patterns of community and trophic structure, and the potential influence of environmental variables, were determined using multivariate analyses. The difference in community structure between regions was greater than among habitats and depth strata. Levels of food availability may explain regional differences in community structure, although some influence of fishing disturbance is also possible. Differences in community and trophic structure were most pronounced between the chemosynthetic vent and seep habitats, and other habitats. Differences among these other habitats within a region were inconsistent, except that canyon and slope communities always differed from each other. Community and trophic structural patterns were partly explained by the environmental differences observed among habitats. The relative vulnerabilities of benthic communities to human disturbance in the two regions were determined based on patterns of abundance and feeding mode of the megafauna. Communities of vent and seep habitats were assessed to be more vulnerable to disturbance than those of the other habitats based on a number of habitat-related attributes. However, the relative vulnerability of megafaunal communities at slope, canyon, and seamount habitats could not confidently be assessed on a habitat basis alone. The results of the present study have

  16. Effect of pesticides on microbial communities in container aquatic habitats

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    Mosquitoes develop in a variety of aquatic habitats and feed on microbial communities associated with decaying organic matter. These aquatic habitats are often embedded within and around agricultural lands and are frequently exposed to agricultural chemicals. We used a microcosm approach to examine ...

  17. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Rainwater Wildlife Area, 1998-2001 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Childs, Allen

    2004-01-01

    The 8,768 acre Rainwater Wildlife Area was acquired in September 1998 by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) through an agreement with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to partially offset habitat losses associated with construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the mainstem Columbia River. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to BPA for acquired lands. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grassland rover types are evaluated in this study. Targeted wildlife species include downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), black-capped chickadee (Parus atricopillus), blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnella neglects). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 65,300, 594m{sup 2} plots, and 112 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 153.3 and 7,187.46 acres were evaluated for each target wildlife mitigation species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total baseline habitat units credited to BPA for the Rainwater Wildlife Area and its seven target species is 5,185.3 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing, road de-commissioning/obliteration, reforestation and thinning, control of competing and unwanted vegetation (including noxious weeds), reestablishing displaced or reduced native

  18. [Fish community structure and its seasonal change in subtidal sandy beach habitat off southern Gouqi Island].

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    Wang, Zhen-Hua; Wang, Kai; Zhao, Jing; Zhang, Shou-Yu

    2011-05-01

    To understand the characteristics of fish community structure in sandy beach habitats of island reef water areas, and to evaluate the potential capacity of these habitats in local fish stock maintenance, fishes were monthly collected with multi-mesh trammel nets in 2009 from the subtidal sandy beach habitat off southern Gouqi Island, taking the adjacent rocky reef habitat as the control. alpha and beta species diversity indices, index of relative importance (IRI), relative catch rate, and dominance curve for abundance and biomass (ABC curve) were adopted to compare the fish species composition, diversity, and community pattern between the two habitats, and multivariate statistical analyses such as non-metric multidimensional scaling (nMDS) and cluster were conducted to discuss the fish assemblage patterns. A total of 63 fish species belonging to 11 orders, 38 families, and 56 genera were collected, of which, 46 fish species were appeared in the two habitats. Due to the appearance of more warm water species in sandy bottom, the fishes in subtidal sandy beach habitat showed much higher richness, and the abundance catch rate (ACR) from May to July was higher than that in rocky reef habitat. In most rest months, the ACR in subtidal sandy beach habitat also showed the similar trend. However, the species richness and diversity in spring and summer were significantly lower in subtidal sandy beach habitat than in rocky reef habitat, because of the high species dominance and low evenness in the sandy beach habitat. Japanese tonguefish (Paraplagusia japonica) was the indicator species in the sandy beach habitat, and dominated in early spring, later summer, autumn, and winter when the fishing pressure was not strong. In sandy bottom, a unique community structure was formed and kept in dynamic, due to the nursery use of sandy beach by Japanese anchovy (Engraulis japonicus) from May to July, the gathering of gray mullet (Mugil cephalus) in most months for feeding, and the large

  19. Habitat Fragmentation Drives Plant Community Assembly Processes across Life Stages

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    Hu, Guang; Feeley, Kenneth J.; Yu, Mingjian

    2016-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation is one of the principal causes of biodiversity loss and hence understanding its impacts on community assembly and disassembly is an important topic in ecology. We studied the relationships between fragmentation and community assembly processes in the land-bridge island system of Thousand Island Lake in East China. We focused on the changes in species diversity and phylogenetic diversity that occurred between life stages of woody plants growing on these islands. The observed diversities were compared with the expected diversities from random null models to characterize assembly processes. Regression tree analysis was used to illustrate the relationships between island attributes and community assembly processes. We found that different assembly processes predominate in the seedlings-to-saplings life-stage transition (SS) vs. the saplings-to-trees transition (ST). Island area was the main attribute driving the assembly process in SS. In ST, island isolation was more important. Within a fragmented landscape, the factors driving community assembly processes were found to differ between life stage transitions. Environmental filtering had a strong effect on the seedlings-to-saplings life-stage transition. Habitat isolation and dispersal limitation influenced all plant life stages, but had a weaker effect on communities than area. These findings add to our understanding of the processes driving community assembly and species coexistence in the context of pervasive and widespread habitat loss and fragmentation. PMID:27427960

  20. Coastal habitat and biological community response to dam removal on the Elwha River

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    Foley, Melissa M.; Warrick, Jonathan A.; Ritchie, Andrew C.; Stevens, Andrew; Shafroth, Patrick B.; Duda, Jeff; Beirne, Matthew M.; Paradis, Rebecca; Gelfenbaum, Guy R.; McCoy, Randall; Cubley, Erin S.

    2017-01-01

    Habitat diversity and heterogeneity play a fundamental role in structuring ecological communities. Dam emplacement and removal can fundamentally alter habitat characteristics, which in turn can affect associated biological communities. Beginning in the early 1900s, the Elwha and Glines Canyon dams in Washington, USA, withheld an estimated 30 million tonnes of sediment from river, coastal, and nearshore habitats. During the staged removal of these dams—the largest dam removal project in history—over 14 million tonnes of sediment were released from the former reservoirs. Our interdisciplinary study in coastal habitats—the first of its kind—shows how the physical changes to the river delta and estuary habitats during dam removal were linked to responses in biological communities. Sediment released during dam removal resulted in over a meter of sedimentation in the estuary and over 400 m of expansion of the river mouth delta landform. These changes increased the amount of supratidal and intertidal habitat, but also reduced the influx of seawater into the pre-removal estuary complex. The effects of these geomorphic and hydrologic changes cascaded to biological systems, reducing the abundance of macroinvertebrates and fish in the estuary and shifting community composition from brackish to freshwater-dominated species. Vegetation did not significantly change on the delta, but pioneer vegetation increased during dam removal, coinciding with the addition of newly available habitat. Understanding how coastal habitats respond to large-scale human stressors—and in some cases the removal of those stressors—is increasingly important as human uses and restoration activities increase in these habitats.

  1. 76 FR 6491 - San Diego County Water Authority Subregional Natural Community Conservation Program/Habitat...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-04

    ...] San Diego County Water Authority Subregional Natural Community Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation Plan, San Diego and Riverside Counties, CA; Final Environmental Impact Statement and Habitat... also announce the availability of the Water Authority's Subregional Natural Community Conservation...

  2. Differential Habitat Use or Intraguild Interactions: What Structures a Carnivore Community?

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    Matthew E Gompper

    Full Text Available Differential habitat use and intraguild competition are both thought to be important drivers of animal population sizes and distributions. Habitat associations for individual species are well-established, and interactions between particular pairs of species have been highlighted in many focal studies. However, community-wide assessments of the relative strengths of these two factors have not been conducted. We built multi-scale habitat occupancy models for five carnivore taxa of New York's Adirondack landscape and assessed the relative performance of these models against ones in which co-occurrences of potentially competing carnivore species were also incorporated. Distribution models based on habitat performed well for all species. Black bear (Ursus americanus and fisher (Martes pennanti distribution was similar in that occupancy of both species was negatively associated with paved roads. However, black bears were also associated with larger forest fragments and fishers with smaller forest fragments. No models with habitat features were more supported than the null habitat model for raccoons (Procyon lotor. Martens (Martes americana were most associated with increased terrain ruggedness and elevation. Weasel (Mustela spp. occupancy increased with the cover of deciduous forest. For most species dyads habitat-only models were more supported than those models with potential competitors incorporated. The exception to this finding was for the smallest carnivore taxa (marten and weasel where habitat plus coyote abundance models typically performed better than habitat-only models. Assessing this carnivore community as whole, we conclude that differential habitat use is more important than species interactions in maintaining the distribution and structure of this carnivore guild.

  3. Habitat and landscape characteristics underlying anuran community structure along an urban-rural gradient.

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    Pillsbury, Finn C; Miller, James R

    2008-07-01

    Urbanization has been cited as an important factor in worldwide amphibian declines, and although recent work has illustrated the important influence of broad-scale ecological patterns and processes on amphibian populations, little is known about the factors structuring amphibian communities in urban landscapes. We therefore examined amphibian community responses to wetland habitat availability and landscape characteristics along an urban-rural gradient in central Iowa, USA, a region experiencing rapid suburban growth. We conducted call surveys at 61 wetlands to estimate anuran calling activity, and quantified wetland habitat structure and landscape context. We used canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) to examine patterns in anuran community structure and identify the most important variables associated with those patterns. Urban density at the landscape scale had a significant negative influence on overall anuran abundance and diversity. While every species exhibited a decrease in abundance with increasing urban density, this pattern was especially pronounced for species requiring post-breeding upland habitats. Anurans most affected by urbanization were those associated with short hydroperiods, early breeding activity, and substantial upland habitat use. We suggest that broad-scale landscape fragmentation is an important factor underlying anuran community structure in this region, possibly due to limitations on the accessibility of otherwise suitable habitat in fragmented urban landscapes. This study underscores the importance of a regional approach to amphibian conservation in urban and urbanizing areas; in fragmented landscapes, a network of interconnected wetland and upland habitats may be more likely to support a successful, diverse anuran community than will isolated sites.

  4. 75 FR 11194 - San Diego County Water Authority Natural Communities Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-10

    ... Diego County Water Authority Natural Communities Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation Plan, San... meetings for the San Diego County Water Authority's (Water Authority/Applicant) draft Natural Communities Conservation Plan (NCCP)/Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) prepared in application to us for an incidental take...

  5. Different in the dark: The effect of habitat characteristics on community composition and beta diversity in bromeliad microfauna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annika Busse

    Full Text Available The mechanisms which structure communities have been the focus of a large body of research. Here, we address the question if habitat characteristics describing habitat quality may drive changes in community composition and beta diversity of bromeliad-inhabiting microfauna. In our system, changes in canopy cover along an environmental gradient may affect resource availability, disturbance in form of daily water temperature fluctuations and predation, and thus may lead to changes in community structure of bromeliad microfauna through differences in habitat quality along this gradient. Indeed, we observed distinct changes in microfauna community composition along the environmental gradient explained by changes in the extent of daily water temperature fluctuations. We found beta diversity to be higher under low habitat quality (low canopy cover than under high habitat quality (high canopy cover, which could potentially be explained by a higher relative importance of stochastic processes under low habitat quality. We also partitioned beta diversity into turnover and nestedness components and we found a nested pattern of beta diversity along the environmental gradient, with communities from the lower-quality habitat being nested subsets of communities from the higher-quality habitat. However, this pattern resulted from an increase in microfauna alpha diversity with an increase in habitat quality. By providing insights into microfauna-environment relationships our results contribute to the mechanistic understanding of community dynamics in small freshwater bodies. Here, we highlight the importance of habitat characteristics representing habitat quality in structuring communities, and suggest that this information may help to improve conservation practices of small freshwater ecosystems.

  6. Different in the dark: The effect of habitat characteristics on community composition and beta diversity in bromeliad microfauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antiqueira, Pablo A. P.; Neutzling, Alexandre S.; Wolf, Anna M.; Romero, Gustavo Q.; Petermann, Jana S.

    2018-01-01

    The mechanisms which structure communities have been the focus of a large body of research. Here, we address the question if habitat characteristics describing habitat quality may drive changes in community composition and beta diversity of bromeliad-inhabiting microfauna. In our system, changes in canopy cover along an environmental gradient may affect resource availability, disturbance in form of daily water temperature fluctuations and predation, and thus may lead to changes in community structure of bromeliad microfauna through differences in habitat quality along this gradient. Indeed, we observed distinct changes in microfauna community composition along the environmental gradient explained by changes in the extent of daily water temperature fluctuations. We found beta diversity to be higher under low habitat quality (low canopy cover) than under high habitat quality (high canopy cover), which could potentially be explained by a higher relative importance of stochastic processes under low habitat quality. We also partitioned beta diversity into turnover and nestedness components and we found a nested pattern of beta diversity along the environmental gradient, with communities from the lower-quality habitat being nested subsets of communities from the higher-quality habitat. However, this pattern resulted from an increase in microfauna alpha diversity with an increase in habitat quality. By providing insights into microfauna-environment relationships our results contribute to the mechanistic understanding of community dynamics in small freshwater bodies. Here, we highlight the importance of habitat characteristics representing habitat quality in structuring communities, and suggest that this information may help to improve conservation practices of small freshwater ecosystems. PMID:29401522

  7. Temporal variation in the arthropod community of desert riparian habitats with varying amounts of saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durst, S.L.; Theimer, T.C.; Paxton, E.H.; Sogge, M.K.

    2008-01-01

    We used Malaise traps to examine the aerial arthropod community in riparian habitats dominated by native willow, exotic saltcedar, or a mixture of these two tree species in central Arizona, USA. Over the course of three sampling periods per year in 2003 and 2004, native habitats had significantly greater diversity (Shannon-Wiener) and supported different arthropod communities compared to exotic habitats, while mixed habitats were intermediate in terms of diversity and supported an arthropod community statistically indistinguishable from the exotic site. The composition of arthropod communities varied significantly between the two years, and there was an approximately two-fold difference in richness and diversity. Overall, we documented complex interactions indicating that differences among the arthropod communities of riparian habitats may be driven not only by the composition of native and exotic tree species making up these habitats, but also by year and season of arthropod sampling.

  8. Bird-community responses to habitat creation in a long-term, large-scale natural experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whytock, Robin C; Fuentes-Montemayor, Elisa; Watts, Kevin; Barbosa De Andrade, Patanjaly; Whytock, Rory T; French, Paul; Macgregor, Nicholas A; Park, Kirsty J

    2018-04-01

    Ecosystem function and resilience are compromised when habitats become fragmented due to land-use change. This has led to national and international conservation strategies aimed at restoring habitat extent and improving functional connectivity (i.e., maintaining dispersal processes). However, biodiversity responses to landscape-scale habitat creation and the relative importance of spatial and temporal scales are poorly understood, and there is disagreement over which conservation strategies should be prioritized. We used 160 years of historic post-agricultural woodland creation as a natural experiment to evaluate biodiversity responses to habitat creation in a landscape context. Birds were surveyed in 101 secondary, broadleaf woodlands aged 10-160 years with ≥80% canopy cover and in landscapes with 0-17% broadleaf woodland cover within 3000 m. We used piecewise structural equation modeling to examine the direct and indirect relationships between bird abundance and diversity, ecological continuity, patch characteristics, and landscape structure and quantified the relative conservation value of local and landscape scales for bird communities. Ecological continuity indirectly affected overall bird abundance and species richness through its effects on stand structure, but had a weaker influence (effect size near 0) on the abundance and diversity of species most closely associated with woodland habitats. This was probably because woodlands were rapidly colonized by woodland generalists in ≤10 years (minimum patch age) but were on average too young (median 50 years) to be colonized by woodland specialists. Local patch characteristics were relatively more important than landscape characteristics for bird communities. Based on our results, biodiversity responses to habitat creation depended on local- and landscape-scale factors that interacted across time and space. We suggest that there is a need for further studies that focus on habitat creation in a landscape

  9. Marine fish community structure and habitat associations on the Canadian Beaufort shelf and slope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majewski, Andrew R.; Atchison, Sheila; MacPhee, Shannon; Eert, Jane; Niemi, Andrea; Michel, Christine; Reist, James D.

    2017-03-01

    Marine fishes in the Canadian Beaufort Sea have complex interactions with habitats and prey, and occupy a pivotal position in the food web by transferring energy between lower- and upper-trophic levels, and also within and among habitats (e.g., benthic-pelagic coupling). The distributions, habitat associations, and community structure of most Beaufort Sea marine fishes, however, are unknown thus precluding effective regulatory management of emerging offshore industries in the region (e.g., hydrocarbon development, shipping, and fisheries). Between 2012 and 2014, Fisheries and Oceans Canada conducted the first baseline survey of offshore marine fishes, their habitats, and ecological relationships in the Canadian Beaufort Sea. Benthic trawling was conducted at 45 stations spanning 18-1001 m depths across shelf and slope habitats. Physical oceanographic variables (depth, salinity, temperature, oxygen), biological variables (benthic chlorophyll and integrated water-column chlorophyll) and sediment composition (grain size) were assessed as potential explanatory variables for fish community structure using a non-parametric statistical approach. Selected stations were re-sampled in 2013 and 2014 for a preliminary assessment of inter-annual variability in the fish community. Four distinct fish assemblages were delineated on the Canadian Beaufort Shelf and slope: 1) Nearshore-shelf: 50 and ≤200 m depths, 3) Upper-slope: ≥200 and ≤500 m depths, and 4) Lower-slope: ≥500 m depths. Depth was the environmental variable that best explained fish community structure, and each species assemblage was spatially associated with distinct aspects of the vertical water mass profile. Significant differences in the fish community from east to west were not detected, and the species composition of the assemblages on the Canadian Beaufort Shelf have not changed substantially over the past decade. This community analysis provides a framework for testing hypotheses regarding the trophic

  10. Habitat connectivity shapes urban arthropod communities: the key role of green roofs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braaker, S; Ghazoul, J; Obrist, M K; Moretti, M

    2014-04-01

    The installation of green roofs, defined here as rooftops with a shallow soil cover and extensive vegetation, has been proposed as a possible measure to mitigate the loss of green space caused by the steady growth of cities. However, the effectiveness of green roofs in supporting arthropod communities, and the extent to which they facilitate connectivity of these communities within the urban environment is currently largely unknown. We investigated the variation of species community composition (beta diversity) of four arthropod groups with contrasting mobility (Carabidae, Araneae, Curculionidae, and Apidae) on 40 green roofs and 40 extensively managed green sites on the ground in the city of Zurich, Switzerland. With redundancy analysis and variation partitioning, we (1) disentangled the relative importance of local environmental conditions, the surrounding land cover composition, and habitat connectivity on species community composition, (2) searched for specific spatial scales of habitat connectivity for the different arthropod groups, and (3) discussed the ecological and functional value of green roofs in cities. Our study revealed that on green roofs community composition of high-mobility arthropod groups (bees and weevils) were mainly shaped by habitat connectivity, while low-mobility arthropod groups (carabids and spiders) were more influenced by local environmental conditions. A similar but less pronounced pattern was found for ground communities. The high importance of habitat connectivity in shaping high-mobility species community composition indicates that these green roof communities are substantially connected by the frequent exchange of individuals among surrounding green roofs. On the other hand, low-mobility species communities on green roofs are more likely connected to ground sites than to other green roofs. The integration of green roofs in urban spatial planning strategies has great potential to enable higher connectivity among green spaces, so

  11. Pollinators in peril? A multipark approach to evaluating bee communities in habitats vulnerable to effects from climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rykken, Jessica; Rodman, Ann; Droege, Sam; Grundel, Ralph

    2014-01-01

    In 2010, collaborators from the National Park Service (Ann Rodman, Yellowstone National Park), USGS (Sam Droege and Ralph Grundel), and Harvard University (Jessica Rykken) were awarded funding from the NPS Climate Change Response Program to launch just such an investigation in almost 50 units of the National Park System (fig. 1). The main objectives of this multiyear project were to: Compare bee communities in three “vulnerable” habitats (high elevation, inland arid, coastal) and paired “common” habitats, representative of the landscape matrix, in order to determine whether vulnerable habitats have a distinctive bee fauna that may be at higher risk under climate change scenarios. Inform natural resource managers at each park about the bee fauna at their paired sites, including the presence of rare and endemic species, and make suggestions for active management strategies to promote native bee habitat if warranted. Increase awareness among park natural resource staffs, interpreters, and visitors of native bee diversity and natural history, the essential role of bees in maintaining healthy ecosystems, and potential threats from climate change to pollinator-dependent ecosystems.

  12. Transport infrastructure shapes foraging habitat in a raptor community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Planillo, Aimara; Kramer-Schadt, Stephanie; Malo, Juan E

    2015-01-01

    Transport infrastructure elements are widespread and increasing in size and length in many countries, with the subsequent alteration of landscapes and wildlife communities. Nonetheless, their effects on habitat selection by raptors are still poorly understood. In this paper, we analyzed raptors' foraging habitat selection in response to conventional roads and high capacity motorways at the landscape scale, and compared their effects with those of other variables, such as habitat structure, food availability, and presence of potential interspecific competitors. We also analyzed whether the raptors' response towards infrastructure depends on the spatial scale of observation, comparing the attraction or avoidance behavior of the species at the landscape scale with the response of individuals observed in the proximity of the infrastructure. Based on ecological hypotheses for foraging habitat selection, we built generalized linear mixed models, selected the best models according to Akaike Information Criterion and assessed variable importance by Akaike weights. At the community level, the traffic volume was the most relevant variable in the landscape for foraging habitat selection. Abundance, richness, and diversity values reached their maximum at medium traffic volumes and decreased at highest traffic volumes. Individual species showed different degrees of tolerance toward traffic, from higher abundance in areas with high traffic values to avoidance of it. Medium-sized opportunistic raptors increased their abundance near the traffic infrastructures, large scavenger raptors avoided areas with higher traffic values, and other species showed no direct response to traffic but to the presence of prey. Finally, our cross-scale analysis revealed that the effect of transport infrastructures on the behavior of some species might be detectable only at a broad scale. Also, food availability may attract raptor species to risky areas such as motorways.

  13. A general framework for predicting delayed responses of ecological communities to habitat loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Youhua; Shen, Tsung-Jen

    2017-04-20

    Although biodiversity crisis at different spatial scales has been well recognised, the phenomena of extinction debt and immigration credit at a crossing-scale context are, at best, unclear. Based on two community patterns, regional species abundance distribution (SAD) and spatial abundance distribution (SAAD), Kitzes and Harte (2015) presented a macroecological framework for predicting post-disturbance delayed extinction patterns in the entire ecological community. In this study, we further expand this basic framework to predict diverse time-lagged effects of habitat destruction on local communities. Specifically, our generalisation of KH's model could address the questions that could not be answered previously: (1) How many species are subjected to delayed extinction in a local community when habitat is destructed in other areas? (2) How do rare or endemic species contribute to extinction debt or immigration credit of the local community? (3) How will species differ between two local areas? From the demonstrations using two SAD models (single-parameter lognormal and logseries), the predicted patterns of the debt, credit, and change in the fraction of unique species can vary, but with consistencies and depending on several factors. The general framework deepens the understanding of the theoretical effects of habitat loss on community dynamic patterns in local samples.

  14. Rainwater Wildlife Area Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report; A Columbia Basin Wildlife Mitigation Project.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Childs, Allen B.

    2004-01-01

    The 8,768 acre Rainwater Wildlife Area was acquired in September 1998 by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) through an agreement with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to partially offset habitat losses associated with construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the mainstem Columbia River. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to BPA for acquired lands. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grassland cover types are evaluated in this study. Targeted wildlife species include downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), black-capped chickadee (Parus atricopillus), blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 65,300, 594m{sup 2}2 plots, and 112 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 153.3 and 7,187.46 acres were evaluated for each target wildlife mitigation species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total baseline habitat units credited to BPA for the Rainwater Wildlife Area and its seven target species is 5,185.3 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing, road de-commissioning/obliteration, reforestation and thinning, control of competing and unwanted vegetation (including noxious weeds), reestablishing displaced or reduced native

  15. Microbial community diversity and composition varies with habitat characteristics and biofilm function in macrophyte-rich streams

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Levi, Peter S.; Starnawski, Piotr; Poulsen, Britta

    2017-01-01

    Biofilms in streams play an integral role in ecosystem processes and function yet few studies have investigated the broad diversity of these complex prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbial communities. Physical habitat characteristics can affect the composition and abundance of microorganisms...... in these biofilms by creating microhabitats. Here we describe the prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbial diversity of biofilms in sand and macrophyte habitats (i.e. epipsammon and epiphyton, respectively) in five macrophyte-rich streams in Jutland, Denmark. The macrophyte species varied in growth morphology, C......:N stoichiometry, and preferred stream habitat, providing a range in environmental conditions for the epiphyton. Among all habitats and streams, the prokaryotic communities were dominated by common phyla, including Alphaproteobacteria, Bacteriodetes, and Gammaproteobacteria, while the eukaryotic communities were...

  16. Effects of marine reserves versus nursery habitat availability on structure of reef fish communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Grol, Monique G G; Mumby, Peter J

    2012-01-01

    No-take marine fishery reserves sustain commercial stocks by acting as buffers against overexploitation and enhancing fishery catches in adjacent areas through spillover. Likewise, nursery habitats such as mangroves enhance populations of some species in adjacent habitats. However, there is lack of understanding of the magnitude of stock enhancement and the effects on community structure when both protection from fishing and access to nurseries concurrently act as drivers of fish population dynamics. In this study we test the separate as well as interactive effects of marine reserves and nursery habitat proximity on structure and abundance of coral reef fish communities. Reserves had no effect on fish community composition, while proximity to nursery habitat only had a significant effect on community structure of species that use mangroves or seagrass beds as nurseries. In terms of reef fish biomass, proximity to nursery habitat by far outweighed (biomass 249% higher than that in areas with no nursery access) the effects of protection from fishing in reserves (biomass 21% lower than non-reserve areas) for small nursery fish (≤ 25 cm total length). For large-bodied individuals of nursery species (>25 cm total length), an additive effect was present for these two factors, although fish benefited more from fishing protection (203% higher biomass) than from proximity to nurseries (139% higher). The magnitude of elevated biomass for small fish on coral reefs due to proximity to nurseries was such that nursery habitats seem able to overrule the usually positive effects on fish biomass by reef reserves. As a result, conservation of nursery habitats gains importance and more consideration should be given to the ecological processes that occur along nursery-reef boundaries that connect neighboring ecosystems.

  17. Effects of marine reserves versus nursery habitat availability on structure of reef fish communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Nagelkerken

    Full Text Available No-take marine fishery reserves sustain commercial stocks by acting as buffers against overexploitation and enhancing fishery catches in adjacent areas through spillover. Likewise, nursery habitats such as mangroves enhance populations of some species in adjacent habitats. However, there is lack of understanding of the magnitude of stock enhancement and the effects on community structure when both protection from fishing and access to nurseries concurrently act as drivers of fish population dynamics. In this study we test the separate as well as interactive effects of marine reserves and nursery habitat proximity on structure and abundance of coral reef fish communities. Reserves had no effect on fish community composition, while proximity to nursery habitat only had a significant effect on community structure of species that use mangroves or seagrass beds as nurseries. In terms of reef fish biomass, proximity to nursery habitat by far outweighed (biomass 249% higher than that in areas with no nursery access the effects of protection from fishing in reserves (biomass 21% lower than non-reserve areas for small nursery fish (≤ 25 cm total length. For large-bodied individuals of nursery species (>25 cm total length, an additive effect was present for these two factors, although fish benefited more from fishing protection (203% higher biomass than from proximity to nurseries (139% higher. The magnitude of elevated biomass for small fish on coral reefs due to proximity to nurseries was such that nursery habitats seem able to overrule the usually positive effects on fish biomass by reef reserves. As a result, conservation of nursery habitats gains importance and more consideration should be given to the ecological processes that occur along nursery-reef boundaries that connect neighboring ecosystems.

  18. [Community structure of soil meso- and micro-fauna in different habitats of urbanized region].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Zhong; Zhang, Jia-en; Li, Qing-fang

    2009-12-01

    Investigations were made in May, June, and November 2007 and January 2008 to study the structural characteristics and their seasonal variations of soil meso- and micro-fauna communities in six habitats of three land use types (forest land, constructed grassland and farmland) in Tianhe District of Guangzhou City. The horizontal spatial distribution of soil fauna differed with habitat. During the investigation periods, the Botanical Garden of South China Agricultural University had the highest individual number (1286) of soil mesa- and micro-fauna, while the farmland, especially in the Fenghuang Street area, had the lowest number of individuals and groups. The seasonal variation of the individual number was in order of autumn (1815) > spring (1623) > winter (1365) > summer (1276). Hierarchical clustering and detrended correspondence analysis also showed that the community composition of soil meso- and micro-fauna in different habitats exhibited distinct seasonal variation. In the same seasons, the community structure and composition of soil meso- and micro-fauna in different habitats were correlated to the degrees of human interferences and the properties of soil environment.

  19. Landscaping Habitat for Humanity Homes: A Community Outreach Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramsay, Jodie L.

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this project is to incorporate a community service component into a Biology course at Northern State University (NSU) in Aberdeen, SD. Students in an upper-level botany course (Plant Structure and Function) provide landscaping services to homeowners who have purchased homes through Habitat for Humanity. Homeowner satisfaction with…

  20. Bird communities of the arctic shrub tundra of Yamal: habitat specialists and generalists.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasiliy Sokolov

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The ratio of habitat generalists to specialists in birds has been suggested as a good indicator of ecosystem changes due to e.g. climate change and other anthropogenic perturbations. Most studies focusing on this functional component of biodiversity originate, however, from temperate regions. The Eurasian Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by domestic reindeer and growing human activity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we monitored bird communities in a tundra landscape harbouring shrub and open habitats in order to analyse bird habitat relationships and quantify habitat specialization. We used ordination methods to analyse habitat associations and estimated the proportions of specialists in each of the main habitats. Correspondence Analysis identified three main bird communities, inhabiting upland, lowland and dense willow shrubs. We documented a stable structure of communities despite large multiannual variations of bird density (from 90 to 175 pairs/km(2. Willow shrub thickets were a hotspot for bird density, but not for species richness. The thickets hosted many specialized species whose main distribution area was south of the tundra. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: If current arctic changes result in a shrubification of the landscape as many studies suggested, we would expect an increase in the overall bird abundance together with an increase of local specialists, since they are associated with willow thickets. The majority of these species have a southern origin and their increase in abundance would represent a strengthening of the boreal component in the southern tundra, perhaps at the expense of species typical of the subarctic zone, which appear to be generalists within this zone.

  1. Wetland Plants of Great Salt Lake, A Guide to Identification, Communities, & Bird Habitat

    OpenAIRE

    Downard, Rebekah; Frank, Maureen; Perkins, Jennifer; Kettenring, Karin; Larese-Casanova, Mark

    2017-01-01

    Wetland Plants of Great Salt Lake: a guide to identification, communities, & bird habitat is a wetland plant identification guide, resulting from collaborative research efforts about Great Salt Lake (GSL) wetland conditions and bird habitat. Dr. Rebekah Downard collected dissertation field data from GSL wetlands during 2012–2015, the majority of which informed this work. Dr. Maureen Frank contributed her guide to GSL wetland vegetation and how to manage native plants as high-quality habitat f...

  2. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Gamblin Lake, Technical Report 2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-05-01

    On August 12, 2003, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Gamblin Lake property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in December 2002. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, muskrat, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Gamblin Lake Project provides a total of 273.28 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Conifer forest habitat provides 127.92 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Forested wetland habitat provides 21.06 HUs for bald eagle, black-caped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Wet meadow provides 78.05 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. Emergent wetland habitat provides 46.25 HUs for mallard, muskrat, and Canada goose. The objective of using HEP at the Gamblin Lake Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  3. Definition of sampling units begets conclusions in ecology: the case of habitats for plant communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin A. Mörsdorf

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In ecology, expert knowledge on habitat characteristics is often used to define sampling units such as study sites. Ecologists are especially prone to such approaches when prior sampling frames are not accessible. Here we ask to what extent can different approaches to the definition of sampling units influence the conclusions that are drawn from an ecological study? We do this by comparing a formal versus a subjective definition of sampling units within a study design which is based on well-articulated objectives and proper methodology. Both approaches are applied to tundra plant communities in mesic and snowbed habitats. For the formal approach, sampling units were first defined for each habitat in concave terrain of suitable slope using GIS. In the field, these units were only accepted as the targeted habitats if additional criteria for vegetation cover were fulfilled. For the subjective approach, sampling units were defined visually in the field, based on typical plant communities of mesic and snowbed habitats. For each approach, we collected information about plant community characteristics within a total of 11 mesic and seven snowbed units distributed between two herding districts of contrasting reindeer density. Results from the two approaches differed significantly in several plant community characteristics in both mesic and snowbed habitats. Furthermore, differences between the two approaches were not consistent because their magnitude and direction differed both between the two habitats and the two reindeer herding districts. Consequently, we could draw different conclusions on how plant diversity and relative abundance of functional groups are differentiated between the two habitats depending on the approach used. We therefore challenge ecologists to formalize the expert knowledge applied to define sampling units through a set of well-articulated rules, rather than applying it subjectively. We see this as instrumental for progress in

  4. Definition of sampling units begets conclusions in ecology: the case of habitats for plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mörsdorf, Martin A; Ravolainen, Virve T; Støvern, Leif Einar; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg Svala; Bråthen, Kari Anne

    2015-01-01

    In ecology, expert knowledge on habitat characteristics is often used to define sampling units such as study sites. Ecologists are especially prone to such approaches when prior sampling frames are not accessible. Here we ask to what extent can different approaches to the definition of sampling units influence the conclusions that are drawn from an ecological study? We do this by comparing a formal versus a subjective definition of sampling units within a study design which is based on well-articulated objectives and proper methodology. Both approaches are applied to tundra plant communities in mesic and snowbed habitats. For the formal approach, sampling units were first defined for each habitat in concave terrain of suitable slope using GIS. In the field, these units were only accepted as the targeted habitats if additional criteria for vegetation cover were fulfilled. For the subjective approach, sampling units were defined visually in the field, based on typical plant communities of mesic and snowbed habitats. For each approach, we collected information about plant community characteristics within a total of 11 mesic and seven snowbed units distributed between two herding districts of contrasting reindeer density. Results from the two approaches differed significantly in several plant community characteristics in both mesic and snowbed habitats. Furthermore, differences between the two approaches were not consistent because their magnitude and direction differed both between the two habitats and the two reindeer herding districts. Consequently, we could draw different conclusions on how plant diversity and relative abundance of functional groups are differentiated between the two habitats depending on the approach used. We therefore challenge ecologists to formalize the expert knowledge applied to define sampling units through a set of well-articulated rules, rather than applying it subjectively. We see this as instrumental for progress in ecology as only rules

  5. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Beaver Lake, Technical Report 2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-05-01

    On August 14, 2003, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Beaver Lake property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in November 2002. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, muskrat, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Beaver Lake Project provides a total of 232.26 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Conifer forest habitat provides 136.58 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Forested wetland habitat provides 20.02 HUs for bald eagle, black-caped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Scrub-shrub wetland habitat provides 7.67 HUs for mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Grassland meadow provides 22.69 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. Emergent wetlands provide 35.04 HUs for Canada goose, mallard, and muskrat. Open water provided 10.26 HUs for Canada goose, mallard, and muskrat. The objective of using HEP at the Beaver Lake Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  6. Traits related to species persistence and dispersal explain changes in plant communities subjected to habitat loss

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marini, Lorenzo; Bruun, Hans Henrik; Heikkinen, Risto

    2012-01-01

    Aim Habitat fragmentation is a major driver of biodiversity loss but it is insufficiently known how much its effects vary among species with different life-history traits; especially in plant communities, the understanding of the role of traits related to species persistence and dispersal in dete...... rural landscapes in NW Europe, mitigating the spatial isolation of remaining grasslands should be accompanied by restoration measures aimed at improving habitat quality for low competitors, abiotically dispersed and perennial, clonal species.......Aim Habitat fragmentation is a major driver of biodiversity loss but it is insufficiently known how much its effects vary among species with different life-history traits; especially in plant communities, the understanding of the role of traits related to species persistence and dispersal...... in determining dynamics of species communities in fragmented landscapes is still limited. The primary aim of this study was to test how plant traits related to persistence and dispersal and their interactions modify plant species vulnerability to decreasing habitat area and increasing isolation. Location Five...

  7. Local Plant Diversity Across Multiple Habitats Supports a Diverse Wild Bee Community in Pennsylvania Apple Orchards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammerer, Melanie A; Biddinger, David J; Rajotte, Edwin G; Mortensen, David A

    2016-02-01

    Wild pollinators supply essential, historically undervalued pollination services to crops and other flowering plant communities with great potential to ensure agricultural production against the loss of heavily relied upon managed pollinators. Local plant communities provision wild bees with crucial floral and nesting resources, but the distribution of floristic diversity among habitat types in North American agricultural landscapes and its effect on pollinators are diverse and poorly understood, especially in orchard systems. We documented floristic diversity in typical mid-Atlantic commercial apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) orchards including the forest and orchard-forest edge ("edge") habitats surrounding orchards in a heterogeneous landscape in south-central Pennsylvania, USA. We also assessed the correlation between plant richness and orchard pollinator communities. In this apple production region, edge habitats are the most species rich, supporting 146 out of 202 plant species recorded in our survey. Plant species richness in the orchard and edge habitats were significant predictors of bee species richness and abundance in the orchard, as well as landscape area of the forest and edge habitats. Both the quantity and quality of forest and edges close to orchards play a significant role in provisioning a diverse wild bee community in this agroecosystem. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Habitat-based constraints on food web structure and parasite life cycles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossiter, Wayne; Sukhdeo, Michael V K

    2014-04-01

    Habitat is frequently implicated as a powerful determinant of community structure and species distributions, but few studies explicitly evaluate the relationship between habitat-based patterns of species' distributions and the presence or absence of trophic interactions. The complex (multi-host) life cycles of parasites are directly affected by these factors, but almost no data exist on the role of habitat in constraining parasite-host interactions at the community level. In this study the relationship(s) between species abundances, distributions and trophic interactions (including parasitism) were evaluated in the context of habitat structure (classic geomorphic designations of pools, riffles and runs) in a riverine community (Raritan River, Hunterdon County, NJ, USA). We report 121 taxa collected over a 2-year period, and compare the observed food web patterns to null model expectations. The results show that top predators are constrained to particular habitat types, and that species' distributions are biased towards pool habitats. However, our null model (which incorporates cascade model assumptions) accurately predicts the observed patterns of trophic interactions. Thus, habitat strongly dictates species distributions, and patterns of trophic interactions arise as a consequence of these distributions. Additionally, we find that hosts utilized in parasite life cycles are more overlapping in their distributions, and this pattern is more pronounced among those involved in trophic transmission. We conclude that habitat structure may be a strong predictor of parasite transmission routes, particularly within communities that occupy heterogeneous habitats.

  9. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Iskuulpa Wildlife Mitigation and Watershed Project, Technical Report 1998-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quaempts, Eric

    2003-01-01

    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to evaluate lands acquired and leased in Eskuulpa Watershed, a Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation watershed and wildlife mitigation project. The project is designed to partially credit habitat losses incurred by BPA for the construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the Columbia River. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grasslands cover types were included in the evaluation. Indicator species included downy woodpecker (Picuides puhescens), black-capped chickadee (Pams atricopillus), blue grouse (Beadragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petschia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnello neglects). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 55,500 feet of transects, 678 m2 plots, and 243 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 123.9 and f 0,794.4 acres were evaluated for each indicator species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total habitat units credited to BPA for the Iskuulpa Watershed Project and its seven indicator species is 4,567.8 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest, which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing or implementation of restoration grazing schemes, road de-commissioning, reforestation, large woody debris additions to floodplains, control of competing and unwanted vegetation, reestablishing displaced or reduced native vegetation species

  10. Intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of succession: Effects of habitat age and season on an aquatic insect community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murrell, Ebony G; Ives, Anthony R; Juliano, Steven A

    2014-06-01

    1. Classical studies of succession, largely dominated by plant community studies, focus on intrinsic drivers of change in community composition, such as interspecific competition and changes to the abiotic environment. They often do not consider extrinsic drivers of colonization, such as seasonal phenology, that can affect community change. 2. We investigated both intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of succession for dipteran communities that occupy ephemeral pools, such as those in artificial containers. By initiating communities at different times in the season and following them over time, we compared the relative importance of intrinsic (i.e., habitat age) vs. extrinsic (i.e., seasonal phenology) drivers of succession. 3. We placed water-filled artificial containers in a deciduous forest with 20 containers initiated in each of three months. Containers were sampled weekly to assess community composition. Repeated-measures mixed-effects analysis of community correspondence analysis (CA) scores enabled us to partition intrinsic and extrinsic effects on succession. Covariates of temperature and precipitation were also tested. 4. Community trajectories (as defined by CA) differed significantly with habitat age and season, indicating that both intrinsic and extrinsic effects influence succession patterns. Comparisons of AICcs showed that habitat age was more important than season for species composition. Temperature and precipitation did not explain composition changes beyond those explained by habitat age and season. 5. Quantification of relative strengths of intrinsic and extrinsic effects on succession in dipteran and other ephemeral communities enables us to disentangle processes that must be understood for predicting changes in community composition.

  11. Characteristics of Soil Fauna Communities and Habitat in Small- Holder Cocoa Plantation in South Konawe

    OpenAIRE

    Laode Muhammad Harjoni Kilowasid; Tati Suryati Syamsudin; Franciscus Xaverius Susilo; Endah Sulistyawati; Hasbullah Syaf

    2013-01-01

    The composition of the soil fauna community have played an important role in regulating decomposition and nutrient cycling in agro-ecosystems (include cocoa plantation). Changes in food availability and conditions in the soil habitat can affected the abundance and diversity of soil fauna. This study aimed: (i) to analyze the pattern of changes in soil fauna community composition and characteristic of soil habitat based on the age increasing of cocoa plantation, and (ii) to identify taxa of so...

  12. Influence of Disturbance on Habitats and Biological Communities in Lowland Streams

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Morten Lauge; Friberg, N.

    2009-01-01

    ). The results indicate that disturbance cascades through the stream ecosystem, primarily meditated by changes in macrophyte communities that are essential providers of habitat in unshaded lowland streams in which other structural elements, as coarse inorganic substrates and woody debris, are scarce...

  13. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Priest River, 2004-2005 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-02-01

    On July 6, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Priest River property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in 2001. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Priest River Project provides a total of 105.41 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Conifer forest habitat provides 26.95 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, and white-tailed deer. Grassland habitat provides 23.78 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. Scmb-shrub vegetation provides 54.68 HUs for mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer.

  14. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Carey Creek, Technical Report 2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-05-01

    In August 2002, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Carey Creek property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in December 2001. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Carey Creek Project provides a total of 172.95 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Conifer forest habitat provides 4.91 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, and white-tailed deer. Forested wetlands provide 52.68 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Scrub-shrub wetlands provide 2.82 HUs for mallard, yellow warbler and white-tailed deer. Wet meadow and grassland meadow provide 98.13 HUs for mallard and Canada goose. Emergent wetlands provide 11.53 HUs for mallard, muskrat, and Canada goose. Open water provides 2.88 HUs for Canada goose, mallard, and muskrat. The objective of using HEP at the Carey Creek Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  15. Community structure of age-0 fishes in paired mainstem and created shallow-water habitats in the Lower Missouri River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Starks, Trevor A.; Long, James M.; Dzialowski, Andrew R.

    2016-01-01

    Anthropogenic alterations to aquatic ecosystems have greatly reduced and homogenized riverine habitat, especially those used by larval and juvenile fishes. Creation of shallow-water habitats is used as a restoration technique in response to altered conditions in several studies globally, but only recently in the USA. In the summer of 2012, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sampled larval and juvenile fishes at six paired sites (mainstem and constructed chute shallow-water habitats) along a section of the Missouri River between Rulo, NE and St. Louis, MO, USA. From those samples, we enumerated and identified a total of 7622 fishes representing 12 families. Community responses of fishes to created shallow-water habitats were assessed by comparisons of species richness and diversity measures between paired sites and among sampling events. Shannon entropy measures were transformed, and gamma diversity (total diversity) was partitioned into two components, alpha (within community) and beta (between community) diversity using a multiplicative decomposition method. Mantel test results suggest site location, time of sampling event and habitat type were drivers of larval and juvenile community structure. Paired t-test results indicated little to no differences in beta diversity between habitat types; however, chute habitats had significantly higher alpha and gamma diversity as well as increased abundances of Asian carp larvae when compared with mainstem shallow-water habitat. Our results not only show the importance of created shallow-water habitat in promoting stream fish diversity but also highlight the role space and time may play in future restoration and management efforts. 

  16. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Priest River Project, Technical Report 2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-05-01

    On July 6, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Priest River property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in 2001. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Priest River Project provides a total of 140.73 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Conifer forest habitat provides 60.05 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, and white-tailed deer. Grassland meadow habitat provides 7.39 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. Scrub-shrub vegetation provides 71.13 HUs for mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Open water habitat provides 2.16 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. The objective of using HEP at the Priest River Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  17. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; North Eaton Lake, Technical Report 2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-11-01

    On July 6, 2005, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the North Eaton Lake property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in November 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, muskrat, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The North Eaton Lake Project provides a total of 235.05 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Open water habitat provides 9.38 HUs for Canada goose, mallard and muskrat. Emergent wetland habitat provides 11.36 HUs for Canada goose, mallard and muskrat. Forested wetland provides 10.97 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard and white-tailed deer. Conifer forest habitat provides 203.34 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. The objective of using HEP at the North Eaton Lake Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  18. Estimating the Effects of Habitat and Biological Interactions in an Avian Community.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert M Dorazio

    Full Text Available We used repeated sightings of individual birds encountered in community-level surveys to investigate the relative roles of habitat and biological interactions in determining the distribution and abundance of each species. To analyze these data, we developed a multispecies N-mixture model that allowed estimation of both positive and negative correlations between abundances of different species while also estimating the effects of habitat and the effects of errors in detection of each species. Using a combination of single- and multispecies N-mixture modeling, we examined for each species whether our measures of habitat were sufficient to account for the variation in encounter histories of individual birds or whether other habitat variables or interactions with other species needed to be considered. In the community that we studied, habitat appeared to be more influential than biological interactions in determining the distribution and abundance of most avian species. Our results lend support to the hypothesis that abundances of forest specialists are negatively affected by forest fragmentation. Our results also suggest that many species were associated with particular types of vegetation as measured by structural attributes of the forests. The abundances of 6 of the 73 species observed in our study were strongly correlated. These species included large birds (American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos and Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus that forage on the ground in open habitats and small birds (Red-eyed Vireo (Vireo olivaceus, House Wren (Troglodytes aedon, Hooded Warbler (Setophaga citrina, and Prairie Warbler (Setophaga discolor that are associated with dense shrub cover. Species abundances were positively correlated within each size group and negatively correlated between groups. Except for the American Crow, which preys on eggs and nestlings of small song birds, none of the other 5 species is known to display direct interactions, so we

  19. Differences in meiofauna communities with sediment depth are greater than habitat effects on the New Zealand continental margin: implications for vulnerability to anthropogenic disturbance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norliana Rosli

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Studies of deep-sea benthic communities have largely focused on particular (macro habitats in isolation, with few studies considering multiple habitats simultaneously in a comparable manner. Compared to mega-epifauna and macrofauna, much less is known about habitat-related variation in meiofaunal community attributes (abundance, diversity and community structure. Here, we investigated meiofaunal community attributes in slope, canyon, seamount, and seep habitats in two regions on the continental slope of New Zealand (Hikurangi Margin and Bay of Plenty at four water depths (700, 1,000, 1,200 and 1,500 m. We found that patterns were not the same for each community attribute. Significant differences in abundance were consistent across regions, habitats, water and sediment depths, while diversity and community structure only differed between sediment depths. Abundance was higher in canyon and seep habitats compared with other habitats, while between sediment layer, abundance and diversity were higher at the sediment surface. Our findings suggest that meiofaunal community attributes are affected by environmental factors that operate on micro- (cm to meso- (0.1–10 km, and regional scales (> 100 km. We also found a weak, but significant, correlation between trawling intensity and surface sediment diversity. Overall, our results indicate that variability in meiofaunal communities was greater at small scale than at habitat or regional scale. These findings provide new insights into the factors controlling meiofauna in these deep-sea habitats and their potential vulnerability to anthropogenic activities.

  20. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : West Beaver Lake, 2004-2005 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-02-01

    On September 7, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the West Beaver Lake property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in September 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, muskrat, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The West Beaver Lake Project provides a total of 103.08 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Emergent wetland habitat provides 7.17 HUs for mallard and muskrat. Conifer forest habitat provides 95.91 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. The objective of using HEP at the West Beaver Lake Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  1. Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report; Graves Property - Yakama Nation.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul; Muse, Anthony

    2008-02-01

    A habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis was conducted on the Graves property (140 acres) in June 2007 to determine the number of habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to acquire the property as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of McNary Dam. HEP surveys also documented the general ecological condition of the property. The Graves property was significantly damaged from past/present livestock grazing practices. Baseline HEP surveys generated 284.28 habitat units (HUs) or 2.03 HUs per acre. Of these, 275.50 HUs were associated with the shrubsteppe/grassland cover type while 8.78 HUs were tied to the riparian shrub cover type.

  2. How do habitat filtering and niche conservatism affect community composition at different taxonomic resolutions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, François; Ramesh, B R; Couteron, Pierre

    2014-08-01

    Understanding how local species assembly depends on the regional biogeographic and environmental context is a challenging task in community ecology. In spatially implicit neutral models, a single immigration parameter, I(k), represents the flux of immigrants from a regional pool that compete with local offspring for establishment in communities. This flux counterbalances the effect of local stochastic extinctions to maintain local species diversity. If some species within the regional pool are not adapted to the local environment (habitat filtering), the migrant flux is reduced beyond that of the neutral model, such that habitat filtering influences the value of I(k) in non-neutral situations. Here, we propose a novel model in which immigrants from the regional pool are filtered according to their habitat preferences and the local environment, while taxa potentially retain habitat preferences from their ancestors (niche conservatism). Using both analytical reasoning and simulations, we demonstrate that I(k) is expected to be constant when estimated based on the community composition at several taxonomic levels, not only under neutral assumptions, but also when habitat filtering occurs, unless there is substantial niche conservatism. In the latter case, I(k) is expected to decrease when estimated based on the composition at species to genus and family levels, thus allowing a signature of niche conservatism to be detected by simply comparing I(k) estimates across taxonomic levels. We applied this approach to three rain forest data sets from South India and Central America and found no significant signature of niche conservatism when I(k) was compared across taxonomic levels, except at the family level in South India. We further observed more limited immigration in South Indian forests, supporting the hypothesis of a greater impact of habitat filtering and heterogeneity there than in Central America. Our results highlight the relevance of studying variations of I

  3. Evaluation of habitat suitability models for forest passerines using demographic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chadwick D. Rittenhouse; Frank R., III Thompson; William D. Dijak; Joshua J. Millspaugh; Richard L. Clawson

    2010-01-01

    Habitat suitability is often used as a surrogate for demographic responses (i.e., abundance, survival, fecundity, or population viability) in the application of habitat suitability index (HSI) models. Whether habitat suitability actually relates to demographics, however, has rarely been evaluated. We validated HSI models of breeding habitat suitability for wood thrush...

  4. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Calispell Creek Project, Technical Report 2004-2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-02-01

    On July 13, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Calispell Creek property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in February 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include Canada goose, mallard, muskrat, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Calispell Creek Project provides a total of 138.17 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Emergent wetland habitat provides 5.16 HUs for mallard and muskrat. Grassland provides 132.02 HUs for mallard and Canada goose. Scrub-shrub vegetation provides 0.99 HUs for yellow warbler and white-tailed deer. The objective of using HEP at the Calispell Creek Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  5. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; West Beaver Lake Project, Technical Report 2005

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-05-01

    On September 7, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the West Beaver Lake property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in September 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, muskrat, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The West Beaver Lake Project provides a total of 82.69 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Emergent wetland habitat provides 8.80 HUs for mallard, muskrat, and Canada goose. Conifer forest habitat provides 70.33 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Open water provides 3.30 HUs for mallard, muskrat, and Canada goose. The objective of using HEP at the West Beaver Lake Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  6. Evaluating the predictive abilities of community occupancy models using AUC while accounting for imperfect detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zipkin, Elise F.; Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Fagan, William F.

    2012-01-01

    The ability to accurately predict patterns of species' occurrences is fundamental to the successful management of animal communities. To determine optimal management strategies, it is essential to understand species-habitat relationships and how species habitat use is related to natural or human-induced environmental changes. Using five years of monitoring data in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, Maryland, USA, we developed four multi-species hierarchical models for estimating amphibian wetland use that account for imperfect detection during sampling. The models were designed to determine which factors (wetland habitat characteristics, annual trend effects, spring/summer precipitation, and previous wetland occupancy) were most important for predicting future habitat use. We used the models to make predictions of species occurrences in sampled and unsampled wetlands and evaluated model projections using additional data. Using a Bayesian approach, we calculated a posterior distribution of receiver operating characteristic area under the curve (ROC AUC) values, which allowed us to explicitly quantify the uncertainty in the quality of our predictions and to account for false negatives in the evaluation dataset. We found that wetland hydroperiod (the length of time that a wetland holds water) as well as the occurrence state in the prior year were generally the most important factors in determining occupancy. The model with only habitat covariates predicted species occurrences well; however, knowledge of wetland use in the previous year significantly improved predictive ability at the community level and for two of 12 species/species complexes. Our results demonstrate the utility of multi-species models for understanding which factors affect species habitat use of an entire community (of species) and provide an improved methodology using AUC that is helpful for quantifying the uncertainty in model predictions while explicitly accounting for

  7. Disentangling the influences of habitat structure and limnological predictors on stream fish communities of a coastal basin, southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabio Cop Ferreira

    Full Text Available In stream environments habitat structure and limnological factors interact regulating patterns of energy and material transfer and affecting fish communities. In the coastal basins of Southeastern Brazil, limnological and structural characteristics differ between clear and blackwaters streams. The former have a diversity of substrate types, higher water velocities, and lower water conductivity, while the latter have sandy substrate, tea-colored and acidic waters, and low water velocities. In this study, we verified the relative importance of habitat structure and limnological variables in predicting patterns of variation in stream fish communities. Eight first to third order streams were sampled in the coastal plain of Itanhaém River basin. We captured 34 fish species and verified that community structure was influenced by physical habitat and limnology, being the former more important. A fraction of the variation could not be totally decomposed, and it was assigned to the joint influence of limnology and habitat structure. Some species that were restricted to blackwater streams, may have physiological and behavioral adaptations to deal with the lower pH levels. When we examined only the clearwater streams, all the explained variation in fish community composition was assigned to structural factors, which express specific preferences for different types of habitats.

  8. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Upper Trimble Project, Technical Report 2004-2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-02-01

    On July 13, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Upper Trimble property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in March 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, muskrat, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Upper Trimble Project provides a total of 250.67 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Wet meadow provides 136.92 HUs for mallard, muskrat, and Canada goose. Mixed forest habitat provides 111.88 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. Scrub-shrub vegetation provides 1.87 HUs for yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. The objective of using HEP at the Upper Trimble Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  9. Biodiversity and community composition of sediment macrofauna associated with deep-sea Lophelia pertusa habitats in the Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demopoulos, Amanda W.J.; Bourque, Jill R.; Frometa, Janessy

    2014-01-01

    Scleractinian corals create three-dimensional reefs that provide sheltered refuges, facilitate sediment accumulation, and enhance colonization of encrusting fauna. While heterogeneous coral habitats can harbor high levels of biodiversity, their effect on the community composition within nearby sediments remains unclear, particularly in the deep sea. Sediment macrofauna from deep-sea coral habitats (Lophelia pertusa) and non-coral, background sediments were examined at three sites in the northern Gulf of Mexico (VK826, VK906, MC751, 350–500 m depth) to determine whether macrofaunal abundance, diversity, and community composition near corals differed from background soft-sediments. Macrofaunal densities ranged from 26 to 125 individuals 32 cm−2 and were significantly greater near coral versus background sediments only at VK826. Of the 86 benthic invertebrate taxa identified, 16 were exclusive to near-coral habitats, while 14 were found only in background sediments. Diversity (Fisher’s α) and evenness were significantly higher within near-coral sediments only at MC751 while taxon richness was similar among all habitats. Community composition was significantly different both between near-coral and background sediments and among the three primary sites. Polychaetes numerically dominated all samples, accounting for up to 70% of the total individuals near coral, whereas peracarid crustaceans were proportionally more abundant in background sediments (18%) than in those near coral (10%). The reef effect differed among sites, with community patterns potentially influenced by the size of reef habitat. Taxon turnover occurred with distance from the reef, suggesting that reef extent may represent an important factor in structuring sediment communities near L. pertusa. Polychaete communities in both habitats differed from other Gulf of Mexico (GOM) soft sediments based on data from previous studies, and we hypothesize that local environmental conditions found near L

  10. Biodiversity and community composition of sediment macrofauna associated with deep-sea Lophelia pertusa habitats in the Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demopoulos, Amanda W. J.; Bourque, Jill R.; Frometa, Janessy

    2014-11-01

    Scleractinian corals create three-dimensional reefs that provide sheltered refuges, facilitate sediment accumulation, and enhance colonization of encrusting fauna. While heterogeneous coral habitats can harbor high levels of biodiversity, their effect on the community composition within nearby sediments remains unclear, particularly in the deep sea. Sediment macrofauna from deep-sea coral habitats (Lophelia pertusa) and non-coral, background sediments were examined at three sites in the northern Gulf of Mexico (VK826, VK906, MC751, 350-500 m depth) to determine whether macrofaunal abundance, diversity, and community composition near corals differed from background soft-sediments. Macrofaunal densities ranged from 26 to 125 individuals 32 cm-2 and were significantly greater near coral versus background sediments only at VK826. Of the 86 benthic invertebrate taxa identified, 16 were exclusive to near-coral habitats, while 14 were found only in background sediments. Diversity (Fisher's α) and evenness were significantly higher within near-coral sediments only at MC751 while taxon richness was similar among all habitats. Community composition was significantly different both between near-coral and background sediments and among the three primary sites. Polychaetes numerically dominated all samples, accounting for up to 70% of the total individuals near coral, whereas peracarid crustaceans were proportionally more abundant in background sediments (18%) than in those near coral (10%). The reef effect differed among sites, with community patterns potentially influenced by the size of reef habitat. Taxon turnover occurred with distance from the reef, suggesting that reef extent may represent an important factor in structuring sediment communities near L. pertusa. Polychaete communities in both habitats differed from other Gulf of Mexico (GOM) soft sediments based on data from previous studies, and we hypothesize that local environmental conditions found near L. pertusa

  11. Retention of habitat complexity minimizes disassembly of reef fish communities following disturbance: a large-scale natural experiment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Emslie

    Full Text Available High biodiversity ecosystems are commonly associated with complex habitats. Coral reefs are highly diverse ecosystems, but are under increasing pressure from numerous stressors, many of which reduce live coral cover and habitat complexity with concomitant effects on other organisms such as reef fishes. While previous studies have highlighted the importance of habitat complexity in structuring reef fish communities, they employed gradient or meta-analyses which lacked a controlled experimental design over broad spatial scales to explicitly separate the influence of live coral cover from overall habitat complexity. Here a natural experiment using a long term (20 year, spatially extensive (∼ 115,000 kms(2 dataset from the Great Barrier Reef revealed the fundamental importance of overall habitat complexity for reef fishes. Reductions of both live coral cover and habitat complexity had substantial impacts on fish communities compared to relatively minor impacts after major reductions in coral cover but not habitat complexity. Where habitat complexity was substantially reduced, species abundances broadly declined and a far greater number of fish species were locally extirpated, including economically important fishes. This resulted in decreased species richness and a loss of diversity within functional groups. Our results suggest that the retention of habitat complexity following disturbances can ameliorate the impacts of coral declines on reef fishes, so preserving their capacity to perform important functional roles essential to reef resilience. These results add to a growing body of evidence about the importance of habitat complexity for reef fishes, and represent the first large-scale examination of this question on the Great Barrier Reef.

  12. Habitat degradation and fishing effects on the size structure of coral reef fish communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, S K; Fisher, R; Pratchett, M S; Graham, N A J; Dulvy, N K; Turner, R A; Cakacaka, A; Polunin, N V C

    2010-03-01

    Overfishing and habitat degradation through climate change pose the greatest threats to sustainability of marine resources on coral reefs. We examined how changes in fishing pressure and benthic habitat composition influenced the size spectra of island-scale reef fish communities in Lau, Fiji. Between 2000 and 2006 fishing pressure declined in the Lau Islands due to declining human populations and reduced demand for fresh fish. At the same time, coral cover declined and fine-scale architectural complexity eroded due to coral bleaching and outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish, Acanthaster planci. We examined the size distribution of reef fish communities using size spectra analysis, the linearized relationship between abundance and body size class. Spatial variation in fishing pressure accounted for 31% of the variation in the slope of the size spectra in 2000, higher fishing pressure being associated with a steeper slope, which is indicative of fewer large-bodied fish and/or more small-bodied fish. Conversely, in 2006 spatial variation in habitat explained 53% of the variation in the size spectra slopes, and the relationship with fishing pressure was much weaker (approximately 12% of variation) than in 2000. Reduced cover of corals and lower structural complexity was associated with less steep size spectra slopes, primarily due to reduced abundance of fish < 20 cm. Habitat degradation will compound effects of fishing on coral reefs as increased fishing reduces large-bodied target species, while habitat loss results in fewer small-bodied juveniles and prey that replenish stocks and provide dietary resources for predatory target species. Effective management of reef resources therefore depends on both reducing fishing pressure and maintaining processes that encourage rapid recovery of coral habitat.

  13. Size structure of marine soft-bottom macrobenthic communities across natural habitat gradients: implications for productivity and ecosystem function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tara A Macdonald

    Full Text Available Size distributions of biotic assemblages are important modifiers of productivity and function in marine sediments. We investigated the distribution of proportional organic biomass among logarithmic size classes (2(-6J to 2(16J in the soft-bottom macrofaunal communities of the Strait of Georgia, Salish Sea on the west coast of Canada. The study examines how size structure is influenced by 3 fundamental habitat descriptors: depth, sediment percent fines, and organic flux (modified by quality. These habitat variables are uncorrelated in this hydrographically diverse area, thus we examine their effects in combination and separately. Cluster analyses and cumulative biomass size spectra reveal clear and significant responses to each separate habitat variable. When combined, habitat factors result in three distinct assemblages: (1 communities with a high proportion of biomass in small organisms, typical of shallow areas (3 g C/m(2/yr/δ(15N from the Fraser River; and (3 communities with biomass dominated by moderately large organisms, but lacking the smallest and largest size classes, typical of deep, fine sediments experiencing low modified organic flux (<3.0 gC/m(2/yr/δ(15N. The remaining assemblages had intermediate habitat types and size structures. Sediment percent fines and flux appear to elicit threshold responses in size structure, whereas depth has the most linear influence on community size structure. The ecological implications of size structure in the Strait of Georgia relative to environmental conditions, secondary production and sediment bioturbation are discussed.

  14. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Precious Lands Wildlife Management Area, Technical Report 2000-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kozusko, Shana

    2003-12-01

    The Nez Perce Tribe (NPT) currently manages a 15,325 acre parcel of land known as the Precious Lands Wildlife Management Area that was purchased as mitigation for losses incurred by construction of the four lower Snake River dams. The Management Area is located in northern Wallowa County, Oregon and southern Asotin County, Washington (Figure 1). It is divided into three management parcels--the Buford parcel is located on Buford Creek and straddles the WA-OR state line, and the Tamarack and Basin parcels are contiguous to each other and located between the Joseph Creek and Cottonwood Creek drainages in Wallowa County, OR. The project was developed under the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act of 1980 (P.L. 96-501), with funding from the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). The acreage protected under this contract will be credited to BPA as habitat permanently dedicated to wildlife and wildlife mitigation. A modeling strategy known as Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and adopted by BPA as a habitat equivalency accounting system. Nine wildlife species models were used to evaluate distinct cover type features and provide a measure of habitat quality. Models measure a wide range of life requisite variables for each species and monitor overall trends in vegetation community health and diversity. One product of HEP is an evaluation of habitat quality expressed in Habitat Units (HUs). This HU accounting system is used to determine the amount of credit BPA receives for mitigation lands. After construction of the four lower Snake River dams, a HEP loss assessment was conducted to determine how many Habitat Units were inundated behind the dams. Twelve target species were used in that evaluation: Canada goose, mallard, river otter, downy woodpecker, song sparrow, yellow warbler, marsh wren, western meadowlark, chukar, ring-necked pheasant, California quail, and mule deer. The U.S. Army Corp of

  15. Asotin Creek instream habitat alteration projects : habitat evaluation, adult and juvenile habitat utilization and water temperature monitoring : 2001 progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bumgarner, Joseph D.

    2002-01-01

    Asotin Creek originates from a network of deeply incised streams on the slopes of the Blue Mountains of southeastern Washington. The watershed drains an area of 322 square miles that provides a mean annual flow of 74 cfs. The geomorphology of the watershed exerts a strong influence on biologic conditions for fish within the stream. Historic and contemporary land-use practices have had a profound impact on the kind, abundance, and distribution of anadromous salmonids in the watershed. Fish habitat in Asotin Creek and other local streams has been affected by agricultural development, grazing, tilling practices, logging, recreational activities and implementation of flood control structures (Neilson 1950). The Asotin Creek Model Watershed Master Plan was completed in 1994. The plan was developed by a landowner steering committee for the Asotin County Conservation District (ACCD), with technical support from various Federal, State and local entities. Actions identified within the plan to improve the Asotin Creek ecosystem fall into four main categories: (1) Stream and Riparian, (2) Forestland, (3) Rangeland, and (4) Cropland. Specific actions to be carried out within the stream and in the riparian area to improve fish habitat were: (1) create more pools, (2) increase the amount of large organic debris (LOD), (3) increase the riparian buffer zone through tree planting, and (4) increase fencing to limit livestock access. All of these actions, in combination with other activities identified in the Plan, are intended to stabilize the river channel, reduce sediment input, increase the amount of available fish habitat (adult and juvenile) and protect private property. Evaluation work described within this report was to document the success or failure of the program regarding the first two items listed (increasing pools and LOD). Beginning in 1996, the ACCD, with cooperation from local landowners and funding from Bonneville Power Administration began constructing instream

  16. A Tool for the Automated Design and Evaluation of Habitat Interior Layouts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Matthew A.; Wilhite, Alan W.

    2013-01-01

    The objective of space habitat design is to minimize mass and system size while providing adequate space for all necessary equipment and a functional layout that supports crew health and productivity. Unfortunately, development and evaluation of interior layouts is often ignored during conceptual design because of the subjectivity and long times required using current evaluation methods (e.g., human-in-the-loop mockup tests and in-depth CAD evaluations). Early, more objective assessment could prevent expensive design changes that may increase vehicle mass and compromise functionality. This paper describes a new interior design evaluation method to enable early, structured consideration of habitat interior layouts. This interior layout evaluation method features a comprehensive list of quantifiable habitat layout evaluation criteria, automatic methods to measure these criteria from a geometry model, and application of systems engineering tools and numerical methods to construct a multi-objective value function measuring the overall habitat layout performance. In addition to a detailed description of this method, a C++/OpenGL software tool which has been developed to implement this method is also discussed. This tool leverages geometry modeling coupled with collision detection techniques to identify favorable layouts subject to multiple constraints and objectives (e.g., minimize mass, maximize contiguous habitable volume, maximize task performance, and minimize crew safety risks). Finally, a few habitat layout evaluation examples are described to demonstrate the effectiveness of this method and tool to influence habitat design.

  17. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Oleson Tracts of the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge, 2001-2002 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allard, Donna; Smith, maureen; Schmidt, Peter

    2004-09-01

    Located in the northern Willamette River basin, Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge) was established in 1992 with an approved acquisition boundary to accommodate willing sellers with potentially restorable holdings within the Tualatin River floodplain. The Refuge's floodplain of seasonal and emergent wetlands, Oregon ash riparian hardwood, riparian shrub, coniferous forest, and Garry oak communities are representative of remnant plant communities historically common in the Willamette River valley and offer an opportunity to compensate for wildlife habitat losses associated with the Willamette River basin federal hydroelectric projects. The purchase of the Oleson Units as additions to the Refuge using Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) funds will partially mitigate for wildlife habitat and target species losses incurred as a result of construction and inundation activities at Dexter and Detroit Dams. Lands acquired for mitigation of Federal Columbia River Power System (FCRPS) impacts to wildlife are evaluated using the Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) methodology, which quantifies how many Habitat Units (HUs) are to be credited to BPA. HUs or credits gained lessen BPA's debt, which was formally tabulated in the FCRPS Loss Assessments and adopted as part of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council's Fish and Wildlife Program as a BPA obligation (NWPCC, 1994 and 2000). There are two basic management scenarios to consider for this evaluation: (1) Habitats can be managed without restoration activities to benefit wildlife populations, or (2) Habitats can be restored using a number of techniques to improve habitat values more quickly. Without restoration, upland and wetland areas may be periodically mowed and disced to prevent invasion of exotic vegetation, volunteer trees and shrubs may grow to expand forested areas, and cooperative farming may be employed to provide forage for migrating and wintering waterfowl. Abandoned cropland

  18. Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report; Carl Property - Yakama Nation.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul; Muse, Anthony

    2008-02-01

    A baseline habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis was conducted on the Carl property (160 acres) in June 2007 to determine the number of habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to acquire the property as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of McNary Dam. HEP surveys also helped assess the general ecological condition of the property. The Carl property appeared damaged from livestock grazing and exhibited a high percentage of invasive forbs. Exotic grasses, while present, did not comprise a large percentage of the available cover in most areas. Cover types were primarily grassland/shrubsteppe with a limited emergent vegetation component. Baseline HEP surveys generated 356.11 HUs or 2.2 HUs per acre. Habitat units were associated with the following HEP models: California quail (47.69 HUs), western meadowlark (114.78 HUs), mallard (131.93 HUs), Canada goose (60.34 HUs), and mink (1.38 HUs).

  19. Evaluating effects of habitat loss and land-use continuity on ant species richness in seminatural grassland remnants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauber, Jens; Bengtsson, Jan; Lenoir, Lisette

    2006-08-01

    Seminatural grasslands in Europe are susceptible to habitat destruction and fragmentation that result in negative effects on biodiversity because of increased isolation and area effects on extinction rate. However even small habitatpatches of seminatural grasslands might be of value for conservation and restoration of species richness in a landscape with a long history of management, which has been argued to lead to high species richness. We tested whether ant communities have been negatively affected by habitat loss and increased isolation of seminatural grasslands during the twentieth century. We examined species richness and community composition in seminatural grasslands of different size in a mosaic landscape in Central Sweden. Grasslands managed continuously over centuries harbored species-rich and ecologically diverse ant communities. Grassland remnant size had no effect on ant species richness. Small grassland remnants did not harbor a nested subset of the ant species of larger habitats. Community composition of ants was mainly affected by habitat conditions. Our results suggest that the abandonment of traditional land use and the encroachment of trees, rather than the effects of fragmentation, are important for species composition in seminatural grasslands. Our results highlight the importance of considering land-use continuity and dispersal ability of thefocal organisms when examining the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on biodiversity. Landscape history should be considered in conservation programs focusing on effects of land-use change.

  20. Fish Community Composition and Habitat Use in the Eg-Uur River System, Mongolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norman Mercado-Silva

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Mongolian rivers and their fi sh communities have suffered severe impacts from anthropogenic activities. However, the remoteness of some systems has allowed for the conservation of unique fi sh faunas, including robust populations of Hucho taimen . Conservation of H. taimen requires understanding the composition and ecology of other fi shes in the community. Using multiple sampling techniques, direct observation, and existing literature, we assessed the composition, relative abundance, and ecological attributes of fi shes in the Eg-Uur watershed (Selenge basin. We collected 6 of 12 species known in the watershed. Phoxinus cf. phoxinus and Lota lota were the most and least abundant species, respectively. We failed to detect H. taimen , indicating low abundance or unknown habitat requirements for juveniles. We compared the effectiveness of different sampling techniques (with electro fi shing producing the highest species richness, constructed length-weight relationships for four species , and identi fi ed ecological attributes (i.e., trophic guild, preferred habitat for resident fi shes.

  1. Ecological periodic tables for nekton and benthic macrofaunal community usage of estuarine habitats Slides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecological periodic tables for nekton and benthic macrofaunal community usage of estuarine habitats Steven P. Ferraro, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Newport, OR Background/Questions/Methods The chemical periodic table, the Linnaean system of classification, and the Her...

  2. 75 FR 9921 - San Diego County Water Authority Natural Communities Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-04

    ... Diego County Water Authority Natural Communities Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation Plan, San... the NCCP/HCP's conservation strategy. Covered Activities would include developing new water... permit application, and notice of public meetings. SUMMARY: The San Diego County Water Authority (Water...

  3. The importance of surrogate habitats in lowland river floodplains for fish community composition

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ryšavá-Nováková, Michaela; Ondračková, Markéta; Jurajda, Pavel

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 16, č. 6 (2009), s. 468-477 ISSN 0969-997X R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC522 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : fish community * fish recruitment * flood * rehabilitation * substitute habitats Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.264, year: 2009

  4. Modelling Fish Habitat Suitability in the Eastern English Channel. Application to community habitat level

    OpenAIRE

    Vaz, Sandrine; Carpentier, Andre; Loots, Christophe; Koubbi, Philippe

    2004-01-01

    Valuable marine habitats and living resources can be found in the Eastern English Channel and in 2003, a Franco-British Interreg IIIA project, ‘Eastern Channel Habitat Atlas for Marine Resource Management’ (CHARM), was initiated to support decision-making for management of essential fish habitats. Fish habitat corresponds to geographic areas within which ranges of environmental factors define the presence of a particular species. Habitat Suitability index (HSI) modelling was used to relate fi...

  5. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Tacoma Creek South Project, Technical Report 2003-2005.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Entz, Ray

    2005-02-01

    On July 6, 2004, the Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) was used to determine baseline habitat suitability on the Tacoma Creek South property, an acquisition completed by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians in June 2004. Evaluation species and appropriate models include bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, Canada goose, mallard, muskrat, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) values were visually estimated and agreed upon by all HEP team members. The Tacoma Creek South Project provides a total of 190.79 Habitat Units (HUs) for the species evaluated. Emergent wetlands provide 20.51 HUs for Canada goose, mallard, and muskrat. Grassland provides 1.65 HUs for Canada goose and mallard. Scrub-shrub vegetation provides 11.76 HUs for mallard, yellow warbler, and white-tailed deer. Conifer forest habitat provides 139.92 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, and white-tailed deer. Deciduous forest also provides 19.15 HUs for bald eagle, black-capped chickadee, mallard, and white-tailed deer. The objective of using HEP at the Tacoma Creek South Project and other protected properties is to document the quality and quantity of available habitat for selected wildlife species. In this way, HEP provides information on the relative value of the same area at future points in time so that the effect of management activities on wildlife habitat can be quantified. When combined with other tools, the baseline HEP will be used to determine the most effective on-site management, restoration, and enhancement actions to increase habitat suitability for targeted species. The same process will be replicated every five years to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of management strategies in improving and maintaining habitat conditions while providing additional crediting to BPA for enhanced habitat values.

  6. Methods for evaluating riparian habitats with applications to management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platts, William S.; Armour, C.L.; Booth, G.D.; Bryant, M.; Bufford, J.L.; Cuplin, P.; Jensen, S.; Lienkaemper, G.W.; Minshall, G.W.; Monsen, S.T.; Nelson, R.L.; Sedell, J.R.; Tuhy, J.S.

    1987-01-01

    Riparian area planning and management is a major national issues today--something that should have been the case a century ago. A century of additive effects of land use has resulted in major impacts on many riparian stream habitats and their fisheries, wildlife, and domestic livestock use. Before scientists can evaluate the influences of various land and water uses on riparian environments, they must first understand these environments. This means being able to detect and measure with confidence the natural and artificial variation and instantaneous conditions of the riparian habitat. These conditions must then be related to the production capability of riparian habitat and any extraneous factors affecting this production potential.

  7. Competition and habitat filtering jointly explain phylogenetic structure of soil bacterial communities across elevational gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qian; Goberna, Marta; Liu, Yuguo; Cui, Ming; Yang, Haishui; Sun, Qixiang; Insam, Heribert; Zhou, Jinxing

    2018-04-24

    The importance of assembly processes in shaping biological communities is poorly understood, especially for microbes. Here we report on the forces that structure soil bacterial communities along a 2000 m elevational gradient. We characterized the relative importance of habitat filtering and competition on phylogenetic structure and turnover in bacterial communities. Bacterial communities exhibited a phylogenetically clustered pattern and were more clustered with increasing elevation. Biotic factors (i.e. relative abundance of dominant bacterial lineages) appeared to be most important to the degree of clustering, evidencing the role of the competitive ability of entire clades in shaping the communities. Phylogenetic turnover showed the greatest correlation to elevation. After controlling for elevation, biotic factors showed greater correlation to phylogenetic turnover than all the habitat variables (i.e. climate, soil and vegetation). Structural equation modelling also identified that elevation and soil organic matter exerted indirect effects on phylogenetic diversity and turnover by determining the dominance of microbial competitors. Our results suggest that competition among bacterial taxa induced by soil carbon contributes to the phylogenetic pattern across elevational gradient in the Tibetan Plateau. This highlights the importance of considering not only abiotic filtering but also biotic interactions in soil bacterial communities across stressful elevational gradients. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2018 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Sandy River Delta, Technical Report 2000-2002.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rocklage, Ann; Ratti, John

    2002-02-01

    Land managers are often challenged with the mandate to control exotic and invasive plant species. Reed canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea) and Himalayan blackberry (Rubus discolor) are 2 such species that are currently threatening natural areas in western United States. Reed canarygrass may be native to the inland northwest (Antieau 2000), but it has invaded many wetland areas as dense, monoculture stands. Spread of this plant species is largely attributed to human disturbances, e.g., draining, farming (Antieau 2000). Reed canarygrass often dominates other emergent vegetation such as cattail (Typha spp.) and bulrush (Scirpus spp.) (Whitson et al. 1996, Apfelbaum and Sams 1987), and the resulting habitat is largely unsuitable for wetland birds. Himalayan blackberry was introduced to the United States as a garden shrub and was planted at wildlife-management areas for food and cover. It easily colonizes disturbed places, such as roadsides, ditches, and flood plains (Hoshovsky 2000). Once established, it forms a thick, impenetrable stand, which excludes native shrub species. Although Himalayan blackberry does provide food and cover for wildlife, particularly during fall and winter, it decreases habitat diversity, and therefore, may decrease wildlife diversity. Furthermore, patterns of avian nest predation may be altered in some exotic-shrub communities (Schmidt and Whelan 1999). For land managers to make sound decisions regarding invasive-plant control, it is useful to obtain information on current plant distributions in relation to targeted wildlife species, and then use models to predict how those species may respond to changes in vegetation. The Habitat Evaluations Program was developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to evaluate current and future habitat conditions for fish and wildlife (Stiehl 1994). The program is based on Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) models for specific wildlife species. Each model contains several variables that represent life

  9. Idaho Habitat Evaluation for Off-Site Mitigation Record : Annual Report 1987.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petrosky, Charles E.; Holubetz, Terry B. (Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game, Boise, ID (USA)

    1988-04-01

    The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has been monitoring and evaluating existing and proposed habitat improvement projects for steelhead (Salmo gairdneri) and chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in the Clearwater and Salmon River drainages over the last four years. Projects included in the evaluation are funded by, or proposed for funding by, the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) under the Northwest Power Planning Act as off-site mitigation for downstream hydropower development on the Snake and Columbia rivers. A mitigation record is being developed to use increased smolt production at full seeding as the best measure of benefit from a habitat enhancement project. Determination of full benefit from a project depends on presence of adequate numbers of fish to document actual increases in fish production. The depressed nature of upriver anadromous stocks have precluded attainment of full benefit of any habitat project in Idaho. Partial benefit will be credited to the mitigation record in the interim period of run restoration. According to the BPA Work Plan, project implementors have the primary responsibility for measuring physical habitat and estimating habitat change. To date, Idaho habitat projects have been implemented primarily by the US Forest Service (USFS). The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes (SBT) have sponsored three projects (Bear Valley Mine, Yankee Fork, and the proposed East Fork Salmon River projects). IDFG implemented two barrier-removal projects (Johnson Creek and Boulder Creek) that the USFS was unable to sponsor at that time. The role of IDFG in physical habitat monitoring is primarily to link habitat quality and habitat change to changes in actual, or potential, fish production. Individual papers were processed separately for the data base.

  10. Similar effects of bottom trawling and natural disturbance on composition and function of benthic communities across habitats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Denderen, van Daniel; Bolam, Stefan G.; Hiddink, Jan Geert; Jennings, Simon; Kenny, Andrew; Rijnsdorp, Adriaan D.; Kooten, Van Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Bottom trawl fishing has widespread impacts on benthic habitats and communities. The benthic response to trawling seems to be smaller or absent in areas exposed to high natural disturbance, leading to the hypothesis that natural and trawl disturbance affect benthic communities in a similar way.

  11. Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Handbook.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neilson, Edward L., Jr.; Benson, Delwin E.

    The National 4-H Wildlife Invitational is a competitive event to teach youth about the fundamentals of wildlife management. Youth learn that management for wildlife means management of wildlife habitat and providing for the needs of wildlife. This handbook provides information about wildlife habitat management concepts in both urban and rural…

  12. Dormaier and Chester Butte 2007 Follow-up Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    2008-01-01

    Follow-up habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analyses were conducted on the Dormaier and Chester Butte wildlife mitigation sites in April 2007 to determine the number of additional habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to enhance, and maintain the project sites as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of Grand Coulee Dam. The Dormaier follow-up HEP survey generated 482.92 habitat units (HU) or 1.51 HUs per acre for an increase of 34.92 HUs over baseline credits. Likewise, 2,949.06 HUs (1.45 HUs/acre) were generated from the Chester Butte follow-up HEP analysis for an increase of 1,511.29 habitat units above baseline survey results. Combined, BPA will be credited with an additional 1,546.21 follow-up habitat units from the Dormaier and Chester Butte parcels.

  13. Relative and combined effects of habitat and fishing on reef fish communities across a limited fishing gradient at Ningaloo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Shaun K; Babcock, Russ C; Fisher, Rebecca; Holmes, Thomas H; Moore, James A Y; Thomson, Damian P

    2012-10-01

    Habitat degradation and fishing are major drivers of temporal and spatial changes in fish communities. The independent effects of these drivers are well documented, but the relative importance and interaction between fishing and habitat shifts is poorly understood, particularly in complex systems such as coral reefs. To assess the combined and relative effects of fishing and habitat we examined the composition of fish communities on patch reefs across a gradient of high to low structural complexity in fished and unfished areas of the Ningaloo Marine Park, Western Australia. Biomass and species richness of fish were positively correlated with structural complexity of reefs and negatively related to macroalgal cover. Total abundance of fish was also positively related to structural complexity, however this relationship was stronger on fished reefs than those where fishing is prohibited. The interaction between habitat condition and fishing pressure is primarily due to the high abundance of small bodied planktivorous fish on fished reefs. However, the influence of management zones on the abundance and biomass of predators and target species is small, implying spatial differences in fishing pressure are low and unlikely to be driving this interaction. Our results emphasise the importance of habitat in structuring reef fish communities on coral reefs especially when gradients in fishing pressure are low. The influence of fishing effort on this relationship may however become more important as fishing pressure increases. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. History of benthic research in the English Channel: From general patterns of communities to habitat mosaic description

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauvin, Jean-Claude

    2015-06-01

    Benthic studies in the English Channel (EC), a shallow megatidal and epicontinental sea, began in the 1960s and 1970s with the work of teams led by Norman Holme (UK) and Louis Cabioch (F). During this period, benthic sampling was mainly qualitative, i.e. using a device such as the 'Rallier du Baty' dredge in the case of the French team and a modified anchor dredge in the case of the British team. Studies were focused on acquiring knowledge of the main distributions of benthic communities and species. Surveys on the scale of the whole EC led to the recognition of general features and two main patterns were identified: 1) the role of hydrodynamics on the spatial distribution of sediment, benthic species and communities; 2) the presence of a west-east climatic gradient of faunal impoverishment. Benthic studies in the 1980s-1990s were focused on the beginning of the implementation of long-term survey at a limited number of sites to identify seasonal and multi-annual changes. In the first decade of the 2000s, the implementation of the European Water Framework Directive and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive to define the Ecological Quality Status of marine environments increased the need to acquire better information of the structure and functioning of benthic communities, since benthic species and habitats were recognised as good indicators of human pressure on marine ecosystems. Faced with the increase of human maritime activities, the appearance of invasive species and the need to preserve sensitive marine habitats, benthic studies have been focused on developing a 'toolkit' to help in the decision-making and planning for both sound governance and sustainable management of marine resources and human activities in the English Channel. Multidisciplinary approaches were used to differentiate habitats in a more precise detail. Both indirect (side-scan sonar, ROV) and direct (grab sampling with benthos identification and grain-size analyses) approaches were used and

  15. West Foster Creek 2007 Follow-up Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    2008-02-01

    A follow-up habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis was conducted on the West Foster Creek (Smith acquisition) wildlife mitigation site in May 2007 to determine the number of additional habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to enhance and maintain the project site as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of Grand Coulee Dam. The West Foster Creek 2007 follow-up HEP survey generated 2,981.96 habitat units (HU) or 1.51 HUs per acre for a 34% increase (+751.34 HUs) above baseline HU credit (the 1999 baseline HEP survey generated 2,230.62 habitat units or 1.13 HUs per acre). The 2007 follow-up HEP analysis yielded 1,380.26 sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus) habitat units, 879.40 mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) HUs, and 722.29 western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta) habitat units. Mule deer and sharp-tailed grouse habitat units increased by 346.42 HUs and 470.62 HUs respectively over baseline (1999) survey results due largely to cessation of livestock grazing and subsequent passive restoration. In contrast, the western meadowlark generated slightly fewer habitat units in 2007 (-67.31) than in 1999, because of increased shrub cover, which lowers habitat suitability for that species.

  16. Diversity and community structure of dung beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae across a habitat disturbance gradient in Lore Lindu National Park, Central Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SHAHABUDDIN

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Shahabuddin (2010 Diversity and community structure of dung beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae across habitat disturbance gradient in Lore Lindu National Park, Central Sulawesi. Biodiversitas 11: 29-33. Dung beetles are important component of most terrestrial ecosystems and used to assess the effects of habitat disturbance and deforestation. This study aimed at comparing dung beetle assemblages among several habitat types ranging from natural tropical forest and agroforestry systems to open cultivated areas at the margin of Lore Lindu National Park (LLNP, Central Sulawesi (one of Indonesia’s biodiversity hotspots. Therefore, 10 pitfall traps baited with cattle dung were exposed at each habitat type (n = 4 replicate sites per habitat type to collect the dung beetles. The results showed that species richness of dung beetles declined significantly from natural forest to open area. However cacao agroforestry systems seemed to be capable of maintaining a high portion of dung beetle species inhabiting at forest sites. The closer relationship between dung beetle assemblages recorded at forest and agroforestry sites reflects the high similarity of some measured habitat parameters (e.g. vegetation structure and microclimate between both habitat types, while species assemblages at open areas differed significantly from both other habitat groups. These results indicated that habitat type has importance effect on determining the species richness and community structure of dung beetles at the margin of LLNP.

  17. Temporal and Spatial Scales Matter: Circannual Habitat Selection by Bird Communities in Vineyards.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Guyot

    Full Text Available Vineyards are likely to be regionally important for wildlife, but we lack biodiversity studies in this agroecosystem which is undergoing a rapid management revolution. As vine cultivation is restricted to arid and warm climatic regions, biodiversity-friendly management would promote species typical of southern biomes. Vineyards are often intensively cultivated, mostly surrounded by few natural features and offering a fairly mineral appearance with little ground vegetation cover. Ground vegetation cover and composition may further strongly vary with respect to season, influencing patterns of habitat selection by ecological communities. We investigated season-specific bird-habitat associations to highlight the importance of semi-natural habitat features and vineyard ground vegetation cover throughout the year. Given that avian habitat selection varies according to taxa, guilds and spatial scale, we modelled bird-habitat associations in all months at two spatial scales using mixed effects regression models. At the landscape scale, birds were recorded along 10 1-km long transects in Southwestern Switzerland (February 2014 -January 2015. At the field scale, we compared the characteristics of visited and unvisited vineyard fields (hereafter called parcels. Bird abundance in vineyards tripled in winter compared to summer. Vineyards surrounded by a greater amount of hedges and small woods harboured higher bird abundance, species richness and diversity, especially during the winter season. Regarding ground vegetation, birds showed a season-specific habitat selection pattern, notably a marked preference for ground-vegetated parcels in winter and for intermediate vegetation cover in spring and summer. These season-specific preferences might be related to species-specific life histories: more insectivorous, ground-foraging species occur during the breeding season whereas granivores predominate in winter. These results highlight the importance of

  18. Changes in biological communities of the Fountain Creek Basin, Colorado, 2003–2016, in relation to antecedent streamflow, water quality, and habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, James J.; Bruce, James F.; Zuellig, Robert E.

    2018-01-08

    The analysis described in this report is part of a longterm project monitoring the biological communities, habitat, and water quality of the Fountain Creek Basin. Biology, habitat, and water-quality data have been collected at 10 sites since 2003. These data include annual samples of aquatic invertebrate communities, fish communities, water quality, and quantitative riverine habitat. This report examines trends in biological communities from 2003 to 2016 and explores relationships between biological communities and abiotic variables (antecedent streamflow, physical habitat, and water quality). Six biological metrics (three invertebrate and three fish) and four individual fish species were used to examine trends in these data and how streamflow, habitat, and (or) water quality may explain these trends. The analysis of 79 trends shows that the majority of significant trends decreased over the trend period. Overall, 19 trends before adjustments for streamflow in the fish (12) and invertebrate (7) metrics were all decreasing except for the metric Invertebrate Species Richness at the most upstream site in Monument Creek. Seven of these trends were explained by streamflow and four trends were revealed that were originally masked by variability in antecedent streamflow. Only two sites (Jimmy Camp Creek at Fountain, CO and Fountain Creek near Pinon, CO) had no trends in the fish or invertebrate metrics. Ten of the streamflow-adjusted trends were explained by habitat, one was explained by water quality, and five were not explained by any of the variables that were tested. Overall, from 2003 to 2016, all the fish metric trends were decreasing with an average decline of 40 percent, and invertebrate metrics decreased on average by 9.5 percent. A potential peak streamflow threshold was identified above which there is severely limited production of age-0 flathead chub (Platygobio gracilis).

  19. Evaluating anthropogenic risk of grassland and forest habitat degradation using land-cover data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurt Riitters; James Wickham; Timothy Wade

    2009-01-01

    The effects of landscape context on habitat quality are receiving increased attention in conservation biology. The objective of this research is to demonstrate a landscape-level approach to mapping and evaluating the anthropogenic risks of grassland and forest habitat degradation by examining habitat context as defined by intensive anthropogenic land uses at multiple...

  20. Indicators: Physical Habitat Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Physical habitat complexity measures the amount and variety of all types of cove at the water’s edge in lakes. In general, dense and varied shoreline habitat is able to support more diverse communities of aquatic life.

  1. Habitat evaluation for outbreak of Yangtze voles (Microtus fortis) and management implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zhenggang; Zhao, Yunlin; Li, Bo; Zhang, Meiwen; Shen, Guo; Wang, Yong

    2015-05-01

    Rodent pests severely damage agricultural crops. Outbreak risk models of rodent pests often do not include sufficient information regarding geographic variation. Habitat plays an important role in rodent-pest outbreak risk, and more information about the relationship between habitat and crop protection is urgently needed. The goal of the present study was to provide an outbreak risk map for the Dongting Lake region and to understand the relationship between rodent-pest outbreak variation and habitat distribution. The main rodent pests in the Dongting Lake region are Yangtze voles (Microtus fortis). These pests cause massive damage in outbreak years, most notably in 2007. Habitat evaluation and ecological details were obtained by analyzing the correlation between habitat suitability and outbreak risk, as indicated by population density and historical events. For the source-sink population, 96.18% of Yangtze vole disaster regions were covered by a 10-km buffer zone of suitable habitat in 2007. Historical outbreak frequency and peak population density were significantly correlated with the proportion of land covered by suitable habitat (r = 0.68, P = 0.04 and r = 0.76, P = 0.03, respectively). The Yangtze vole population tends to migrate approximately 10 km in outbreak years. Here, we propose a practical method for habitat evaluation that can be used to create integrated pest management plans for rodent pests when combined with basic information on the biology, ecology and behavior of the target species. © 2014 International Society of Zoological Sciences, Institute of Zoology/Chinese Academy of Sciences and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  2. Evaluating Anthropogenic Risk of Grassland and Forest Habitat Degradation using Land-Cover Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kurt Riitters

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The effects of landscape context on habitat quality are receiving increased attention in conservation biology. The objective of this research is to demonstrate a landscape-level approach to mapping and evaluating the anthropogenic risks of grassland and forest habitat degradation by examining habitat context as defined by intensive anthropogenic land uses at multiple spatial scales. A landscape mosaic model classifies a given location according to the amounts of intensive agriculture and intensive development in its surrounding landscape, providing measures of anthropogenic risks attributable to habitat isolation and edge effects at that location. The model is implemented using a land-cover map (0.09 ha/pixel of the conterminous United States and six landscape sizes (4.4, 15.2, 65.6, 591, 5300, and 47800 ha to evaluate the spatial scales of anthropogenic risk. Statistics for grassland and forest habitat are extracted by geographic overlays of the maps of land-cover and landscape mosaics. Depending on landscape size, 81 to 94 percent of all grassland and forest habitat occurs in landscapes that are dominated by natural land-cover including habitat itself. Within those natural-dominated landscapes, 50 percent of grassland and 59 percent of forest is within 590 m of intensive agriculture and/or intensive developed land which is typically a minor component of total landscape area. The conclusion is that anthropogenic risk attributable to habitat patch isolation affects a small proportion of the total grassland or forest habitat area, while the majority of habitat area is exposed to edge effects.

  3. Evaluation of methods for Canada thistle-free habitat restoration

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of the Interior — Efforts to preserve and restore rare habitats, such as the tallgrass prairies, are at the core of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s mission. This study evaluates...

  4. Watershed Evaluation and Habitat Response to Recent Storms : Annual Report for 1999.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rhodes, Jonathan J.; Huntington, Charles W.

    2000-02-01

    evaluated and the methods used to evaluate them. Watershed responses and attributes evaluated include mass failures, historic soil loss, the integration of roads with the drainage network, estimated flood recurrence intervals, and headwater channel morphology. Habitat attributes evaluated include large woody debris, pool frequency and depth, substrate conditions, and bank stability. Multiple analyses of habitat data in the Tucannon and Wenaha subbasins remain to be completed due to difficulties stemming from data characteristics that indicated that some of the pre-existing data may have be of questionable accuracy. Diagnostic attributes of the questionable data included a change in monitoring protocols during the pre- to post-flood analysis period, physically implausible temporal trends in some habitat attributes at some sites, and conflicting results for the same attribute at the same locations from different data sources. Since unreliable data can lead to spurious results, criteria were developed to screen the data for analysis, as described in this report. It is anticipated that while the data screening will prevent spurious results, it will also truncate some of the planned analysis in the Tucannon and Wenaha systems.

  5. Watershed evaluation and habitat response to recent storms; annual report for 1999

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rhodes, Jonathan J.; Huntington, Charles W.

    2000-01-01

    evaluated and the methods used to evaluate them. Watershed responses and attributes evaluated include mass failures, historic soil loss, the integration of roads with the drainage network, estimated flood recurrence intervals, and headwater channel morphology. Habitat attributes evaluated include large woody debris, pool frequency and depth, substrate conditions, and bank stability. Multiple analyses of habitat data in the Tucannon and Wenaha subbasins remain to be completed due to difficulties stemming from data characteristics that indicated that some of the pre-existing data may have be of questionable accuracy. Diagnostic attributes of the questionable data included a change in monitoring protocols during the pre- to post-flood analysis period, physically implausible temporal trends in some habitat attributes at some sites, and conflicting results for the same attribute at the same locations from different data sources. Since unreliable data can lead to spurious results, criteria were developed to screen the data for analysis, as described in this report. It is anticipated that while the data screening will prevent spurious results, it will also truncate some of the planned analysis in the Tucannon and Wenaha systems

  6. Communities of gastrointestinal helminths of fish in historically connected habitats: habitat fragmentation effect in a carnivorous catfish Pelteobagrus fulvidraco from seven lakes in flood plain of the Yangtze River, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yao Wei J

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Habitat fragmentation may result in the reduction of diversity of parasite communities by affecting population size and dispersal pattern of species. In the flood plain of the Yangtze River in China, many lakes, which were once connected with the river, have become isolated since the 1950s from the river by the construction of dams and sluices, with many larger lakes subdivided into smaller ones by road embankments. These artificial barriers have inevitably obstructed the migration of fish between the river and lakes and also among lakes. In this study, the gastrointestinal helminth communities were investigated in a carnivorous fish, the yellowhead catfish Pelteobagrus fulvidraco, from two connected and five isolated lakes in the flood plain in order to detect the effect of lake fragmentation on the parasite communities. Results A total of 11 species of helminths were recorded in the stomach and intestine of P. fulvidraco from seven lakes, including two lakes connected with the Yangtze River, i.e. Poyang and Dongting lakes, and five isolated lakes, i.e. Honghu, Liangzi, Tangxun, Niushan and Baoan lakes. Mean helminth individuals and diversity of helminth communities in Honghu and Dongting lakes was lower than in the other five lakes. The nematode Procamallanus fulvidraconis was the dominant species of communities in all the seven lakes. No significant difference in the Shannon-Wiener index was detected between connected lakes (0.48 and isolated lakes (0.50. The similarity of helminth communities between Niushan and Baoan lakes was the highest (0.6708, and the lowest was between Tangxun and Dongting lakes (0.1807. The similarity was low between Dongting and the other lakes, and the similarity decreased with the geographic distance among these lakes. The helminth community in one connected lake, Poyang Lake was clustered with isolated lakes, but the community in Dongting Lake was separated in the tree. Conclusion The

  7. Habitats and Species Covered by the EEC Habitats Directive

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pihl, S.; Søgaard, B.; Ejrnæs, R.

    of Conservation (SAC's), Natura 2000. The designations are based upon the presence of 60 of the natural habitat types listed in Annex I of the Directive and approx. 44 of the species listed in Annex II which occur within the territory of Denmark and for the conservation of which the Community has a special...... and the Danish county authorities have initiated a co-operative programme to provide and compile the data necessary to assess the conservation status of the natural habitat types and species concerned. The purpose of this report is to present the conservation status of the habitats and species in Denmark...

  8. Integrating the Public in Mosquito Management: Active Education by Community Peers Can Lead to Significant Reduction in Peridomestic Container Mosquito Habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Healy, Kristen; Hamilton, George; Crepeau, Taryn; Healy, Sean; Unlu, Isik; Farajollahi, Ary; Fonseca, Dina M.

    2014-01-01

    Mosquito species that utilize peridomestic containers for immature development are commonly aggressive human biters, and because they often reach high abundance, create significant nuisance. One of these species, the Asian tiger mosquito Aedes albopictus, is an important vector of emerging infectious diseases, such as dengue, chikungunya, and Zika fevers. Integrated mosquito management (IMM) of Ae. albopictus is particularly difficult because it requires access to private yards in urban and suburban residences. It has become apparent that in the event of a public health concern due to this species, homeowners will have to be active participants in the control process by reducing mosquito habitats in their properties, an activity known as source reduction. However, limited attempts at quantifying the effect of source reduction by homeowners have had mixed results. Of note, many mosquito control programs in the US have some form of education outreach, however the primary approach is often passive focusing on the distribution of education materials as flyers. In 2010, we evaluated the use of active community peer education in a source reduction program, using AmeriCorps volunteers. The volunteers were mobilized over a 4-week period, in two areas with approximately 1,000 residences each in urban Mercer and suburban Monmouth counties in New Jersey, USA. The volunteers were first provided training on peridomestic mosquitoes and on basic approaches to reducing the number of container habitats for mosquito larvae in backyards. Within the two treatment areas the volunteers successfully engaged 758 separate homes. Repeated measures analysis of variance showed a significant reduction in container habitats in the sites where the volunteers actively engaged the community compared to untreated control areas in both counties. Our results suggest that active education using community peer educators can be an effective means of source reduction, and a critical tool in the arsenal

  9. Dung beetle community and functions along a habitat-disturbance gradient in the Amazon: a rapid assessment of ecological functions associated to biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo F Braga

    Full Text Available Although there is increasing interest in the effects of habitat disturbance on community attributes and the potential consequences for ecosystem functioning, objective approaches linking biodiversity loss to functional loss are uncommon. The objectives of this study were to implement simultaneous assessment of community attributes (richness, abundance and biomass, each calculated for total-beetle assemblages as well as small- and large-beetle assemblages and three ecological functions of dung beetles (dung removal, soil perturbation and secondary seed dispersal, to compare the effects of habitat disturbance on both sets of response variables, and their relations. We studied dung beetle community attributes and functions in five land-use systems representing a disturbance gradient in the Brazilian Amazon: primary forest, secondary forest, agroforestry, agriculture and pasture. All response variables were affected negatively by the intensification of habitat disturbance regimes, but community attributes and ecological functions did not follow the same pattern of decline. A hierarchical partitioning analysis showed that, although all community attributes had a significant effect on the three ecological functions (except the abundance of small beetles on all three ecological functions and the biomass of small beetles on secondary dispersal of large seed mimics, species richness and abundance of large beetles were the community attributes with the highest explanatory value. Our results show the importance of measuring ecological function empirically instead of deducing it from community metrics.

  10. Variable responses of fish assemblages, habitat, and stability to natural-channel-design restoration in Catskill Mountain streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldigo, Barry P.; Ernst, Anne G.; Warren, Dana R.; Miller, Sarah J.

    2010-01-01

    Natural-channel-design (NCD) restorations were recently implemented within large segments of five first- and second-order streams in the Catskill Mountains of New York in an attempt to increase channel stability, reduce bed and bank erosion, and sustain water quality. In conjunction with these efforts, 54 fish and habitat surveys were done from 1999 to 2007 at six restored reaches and five stable control reaches to evaluate the effects of NCD restoration on fish assemblages, habitat, and bank stability. A before–after–control–impact study design and two-factor analysis of variance were used to quantify the net changes in habitat and fish population and community indices at treatment reaches relative to those at unaltered control reaches. The density and biomass of fish communities were often dominated by one or two small prey species and no or few predator species before restoration and by one or more trout (Salmonidae) species after restoration. Significant increases in community richness (30%), diversity (40%), species or biomass equitability (32%), and total biomass (up to 52%) in at least four of the six restored reaches demonstrate that NCD restorations can improve the health and sustainability of fish communities in geomorphically unstable Catskill Mountain streams over the short to marginally long term. Bank stability, stream habitat, and trout habitat suitability indices (HSIs) generally improved significantly at the restored reaches, but key habitat features and trout HSIs did not change or decreased at two of them. Fish communities and trout populations at these two reaches were not positively affected by NCD restorations. Though NCD restorations often had a positive effect on habitat and fish communities, our results show that the initial habitat conditions limit the relative improvements than can be achieved, habitat quality and stability do not necessarily respond in unison, and biotic and abiotic responses cannot always be generalized.

  11. Patterns of vegetation and grasshopper community composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kemp, W P; Harvey, S J; O'Neill, K M

    1990-06-01

    A study was conducted to evaluate differences in rangeland grasshopper communities over environmental gradients in Gallatin Valley, Montana, USA. The concept of habitat type (Daubenmire 1966) was used as a basis for discriminating between groupings of patches based on vegetation. A total of 39 patches were selected that represented five recognized grassland habitat types (Mueggler and Stewart 1980), as well as two disturbed types (replanting within a known habitat type). Repeated sampling in 1988 of both the insect and plant communities yielded a total of 40 grasshopper (19 664 individuals) and 97 plant species. Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA) indicated that patch classifications based on presence and percent cover of plants were appropriate and showed good between-group (habitat type) separation for patches along gradients of precipitation/elevation and plant community complexity. Results from undisturbed habitats showed that plant and grasshopper species composition changed over observed environmental gradients and suggested that habitat type influenced not only species presence, but also relative abundance. Discussion is presented that relates results with patch-use and core and satellite species paradigms.

  12. An Expert-Based Assessment Model for Evaluating Habitat Suitability of Pond-Breeding Amphibians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shin-Ruoh Juang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Farm ponds are important habitats for amphibians, birds, and other wildlife. In Taiwan, artificial ponds were originally created on farmlands for irrigation purposes and the needs of the domestic water supply. Although pond creation is a typical farming practice, it also provides habitats for pond-breeding amphibians. Thus, it is essential to understand the current status of habitats and their vulnerability regarding urgent conservation needs for target species. Günther’s frog (Hylarana guentheri, a pond-breeding amphibian, has a high sensitivity towards surrounding environmental changes, and can be used as an indicator species to assess habitat suitability. The purpose of this study is to establish a systematic framework to assess the habitat suitability of pond-breeding amphibians by using Günther’s frog as a pilot-study species. First, we collected frog survey data from Chiayi, Taiwan, from winter 2013 to spring 2015, and investigated the present status of the environmental conditions around the ponds. Next, expert questionnaires and the fuzzy Delphi method were applied to establish the hierarchical evaluation criteria regarding the habitat suitability assessment. Four indicators: the aquatic environments of farm ponds; the terrestrial environments around ponds; landscape connectivity; and the conservation perceptions of the residents, were determined as first-layer factors in the assessment criteria, while ten other indicators were defined as second-layer factors. Based on the established assessment criteria, we performed in situ habitat suitability evaluations on 69 selected sites and surveyed the perceptions of the residents using questionnaires. Results revealed that 19% of locations were rich in frog species with a high habitat suitability. However, 67% of locations showed signs of habitat degradation, which may imply a higher need in practicing habitat improvement or restoration. The Kappa value was 0.6061, which indicated a high

  13. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Hellsgate Project, 1999-2000 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berger, Matthew

    2000-05-01

    A Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) study was conducted on lands acquired and/or managed (4,568 acres total) by the Hellsgate Big Game Winter Range Wildlife Mitigation Project (Hellsgate project) to mitigate some of the losses associated with the original construction and operation of Grand Coulee Dam and inundation of habitats behind the dams. Three separate properties, totaling 2,224 acres were purchased in 1998. One property composed of two separate parcels, mostly grassland lies southeast of the town of Nespelem in Okanogan County (770 acres) and was formerly called the Hinman property. The former Hinman property lies within an area the Tribes have set aside for the protection and preservation of the sharp-tailed grouse (Agency Butte unit). This special management area minus the Hinman acquisition contains 2,388 acres in a long-term lease with the Tribes. The second property lies just south of the Silver Creek turnoff (Ferry County) and is bisected by the Hellsgate Road (part of the Friedlander unit). This parcel contains 60 acres of riparian and conifer forest cover. The third property (now named the Sand Hills unit) acquired for mitigation (1,394 acres) lies within the Hellsgate Reserve in Ferry County. This new acquisition links two existing mitigation parcels (the old Sand Hills parcels and the Lundstrum Flat parcel, all former Kuehne purchases) together forming one large unit. HEP team members included individuals from the Colville Confederated Tribes Fish and Wildlife Department (CTCR), Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), and Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The HEP team conducted a baseline habitat survey using the following HEP species models: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), mink (Mustela vison), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), bobcat (Lynx rufus), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), and sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus columbianus). HEP analysis and results are discussed within the body of the text. The cover types

  14. Effects of habitat-forming species richness, evenness, identity, and abundance on benthic intertidal community establishment and productivity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie Lemieux

    Full Text Available In a context of reduced global biodiversity, the potential impacts from the loss of habitat-forming species (HFS on ecosystem structure and functioning must be established. These species are often the main community primary producers and have a major role in the establishment of organisms through facilitation processes. This study focuses on macroalgae and mussels as HFS within an intertidal zone along the St. Lawrence estuary (Quebec, Canada. Over a 16-week period, we manipulated the in situ diversity profile (richness, evenness, identity, and abundance of the dominant HFS (Fucus distichus edentatus, F. vesiculosus, and Mytilus spp. in order to define their role in both the establishment of associated species and community primary production. Contrary to expectation, no general change in HFS richness, evenness, abundance, or identity on associated species community establishment was observed. However, over the study period, the HFS diversity profile modified the structure within the trophic guilds, which may potentially affect further community functions. Also, our results showed that the low abundance of HFS had a negative impact on the primary productivity of the community. Our results suggest that HFS diversity profiles have a limited short-term role in our study habitat and may indicate that biological forcing in these intertidal communities is less important than environmental conditions. As such, there was an opportunistic establishment of species that ensured rapid colonization regardless of the absence, or the diversity profile, of facilitators such as HFS.

  15. Habitat selection and diurnal refugia of gray foxes in southwestern Georgia, USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas R Deuel

    Full Text Available Understanding habitat selection of gray foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus is essential to evaluate their potential response to changes in land use and predator communities. Few studies have evaluated temporal habitat selection or explicitly identified habitats used by gray foxes for diurnal refugia. We used GPS collars to obtain location data for 34 gray foxes (20 males and 14 females from February 2014 to December 2015 to evaluate temporal (seasonal and diel habitat selection and selection of diurnal refugia in southwestern Georgia, USA. We analyzed habitat selection at 2 levels, selection of a core area within the home range and selection of locations within the home range. Habitat selection was non-random (P 0.05. Hardwoods, human use (i.e., areas associated with regular human activity such as buildings, lawns, parking areas, etc., and roads were selected (P 0.05. Selection of habitats for diurnal refugia did not vary seasonally or by sex (P > 0.05, with foxes selecting (P < 0.05 areas near hardwood forests, roads, agriculture, human use, pastures/food plots, and shrub scrub habitats. Gray foxes were observed on the ground while resting, and we found no evidence of gray foxes diurnally resting in trees. Our results suggest that on our study area, gray foxes are an edge species that prefer forests with a hardwood component in areas near human use and roads.

  16. Redox-Stratified Bacterial Communities in Sediments Associated with Multiple Lucinid Bivalve Species: Implications for Symbiosis in Changing Coastal Habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paterson, A. T.; Fortier, C. M.; Long, B.; Kokesh, B. S.; Lim, S. J.; Campbell, B. J.; Anderson, L. C.; Engel, A. S.

    2017-12-01

    Lucinids, chemosymbiotic marine bivalves, occupy strong redox gradient habitats, including the rhizosphere of coastal seagrass beds and mangrove forests in subtropical to tropical ecosystems. Lucinids and their sulfide-oxidizing gammaproteobacterial endosymbionts, which are acquired from the environment, provide a critical ecosystem service by removing toxic reduced sulfur compounds from the surrounding environment, and lucinids may be an important food source to economically valuable fisheries. The habitats of Phacoides pectinatus, Stewartia floridana, Codakia orbicularis, Ctena orbiculata, and Lucina pensylvanica lucinids in Florida and San Salvador in The Bahamas were evaluated in comprehensive malacological, microbiological, and geochemical surveys. Vegetation cover included different seagrass species or calcareous green macroalgae. All sites were variably affected by anthropogenic activities, as evidenced by visible prop scars in seagrass beds, grain size distributions atypical of low energy environments (i.e., artificial fill or dredge material from nearby channels), and high levels of pyrogenic hydrocarbon compounds in sediment indicative of urbanization impact. Where present, lucinid population densities frequently exceeded 2000 individuals per cubic meter, and were typically more abundant underlying seagrass compared to unvegetated, bare sand. Dissolved oxygen and sulfide levels varied from where lucinids were recovered. The sediment bacterial communities from classified 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that the diversity of putative anaerobic groups increased with sediment depth, but putative aerobes, including of Gammaproteobacteria related to the lucinid endosymbionts, decreased with depth. Where multiple seagrass species co-occurred, retrieved bacterial community compositions correlated to overlying seagrass species, but diversity differed from bare sand patches, including among putative free-living endosymbiont groups. As such, continued sea

  17. Evaluation of habitat quality for selected wildlife species associated with back channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, James T.; Zadnik, Andrew K.; Wood, Petra Bohall; Bledsoe, Kerry

    2013-01-01

    The islands and associated back channels on the Ohio River, USA, are believed to provide critical habitat features for several wildlife species. However, few studies have quantitatively evaluated habitat quality in these areas. Our main objective was to evaluate the habitat quality of back and main channel areas for several species using habitat suitability index (HSI) models. To test the effectiveness of these models, we attempted to relate HSI scores and the variables measured for each model with measures of relative abundance for the model species. The mean belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon) HSI was greater on the main than back channel. However, the model failed to predict kingfisher abundance. The mean reproduction component of the great blue heron (Ardea herodias) HSI, total common muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus) HSI, winter cover component of the snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina) HSI, and brood-rearing component of the wood duck (Aix sponsa) HSI were all greater on the back than main channel, and were positively related with the relative abundance of each species. We found that island back channels provide characteristics not found elsewhere on the Ohio River and warrant conservation as important riparian wildlife habitat. The effectiveness of using HSI models to predict species abundance on the river was mixed. Modifications to several of the models are needed to improve their use on the Ohio River and, likely, other large rivers.

  18. Distribution and habitat use of the Missouri River and Lower Yellowstone River benthic fishes from 1996 to 1998: A baseline for fish community recovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wildhaber, M.L.; Gladish, D.W.; Arab, A.

    2011-01-01

    Past and present Missouri River management practices have resulted in native fishes being identified as in jeopardy. In 1995, the Missouri River Benthic Fishes Study was initiated to provide improved information on Missouri River fish populations and how alterations might affect them. The study produced a baseline against which to evaluate future changes in Missouri River operating criteria. The objective was to evaluate population structure and habitat use of benthic fishes along the entire mainstem Missouri River, exclusive of reservoirs. Here we use the data from this study to provide a recent-past baseline for on-going Missouri River fish population monitoring programmes along with a more powerful method for analysing data containing large percentages of zero values. This is carried out by describing the distribution and habitat use of 21 species of Missouri River benthic fishes based on catch-per-unit area data from multiple gears. We employ a Bayesian zero-inflated Poisson model expanded to include continuous measures of habitat quality (i.e. substrate composition, depth, velocity, temperature, turbidity and conductivity). Along with presenting the method, we provide a relatively complete picture of the Missouri River benthic fish community and the relationship between their relative population numbers and habitat conditions. We demonstrate that our single model provides all the information that is often obtained by a myriad of analytical techniques. An important advantage of the present approach is reliable inference for patterns of relative abundance using multiple gears without using gear efficiencies.

  19. Response of bird community structure to habitat management in piñon-juniper woodland-sagebrush ecotones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knick, Steven T.; Hanser, Steven E.; Grace, James B.; Hollenbeck, Jeff P.; Leu, Matthias

    2017-01-01

    Piñon (Pinus spp.) and juniper (Juniperus spp.) woodlands have been expanding their range across the intermountain western United States into landscapes dominated by sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) shrublands. Management actions using prescribed fire and mechanical cutting to reduce woodland cover and control expansion provided opportunities to understand how environmental structure and changes due to these treatments influence bird communities in piñon-juniper systems. We surveyed 43 species of birds and measured vegetation for 1–3 years prior to treatment and 6–7 years post-treatment at 13 locations across Oregon, California, Idaho, Nevada, and Utah. We used structural equation modeling to develop and statistically test our conceptual model that the current bird assembly at a site is structured primarily by the previous bird community with additional drivers from current and surrounding habitat conditions as well as external regional bird dynamics. Treatment reduced woodland cover by >5% at 80 of 378 survey sites. However, habitat change achieved by treatment was highly variable because actual disturbance differed widely in extent and intensity. Biological inertia in the bird community was the strongest single driver; 72% of the variation in the bird assemblage was explained by the community that existed seven years earlier. Greater net reduction in woodlands resulted in slight shifts in the bird community to one having ecotone or shrubland affinities. However, the overall influence of woodland changes from treatment were relatively small and were buffered by other extrinsic factors. Regional bird dynamics did not significantly influence the structure of local bird communities at our sites. Our results suggest that bird communities in piñon-juniper woodlands can be highly stable when management treatments are conducted in areas with more advanced woodland development and at the level of disturbance measured in our study.

  20. Habitat, food, and small mammal community structure in Namaqualand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. van Deventer

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available The effect of habitat differences and food availability on small mammal (rodent and elephant shrew species richness, diversity, density and biomass was investigated in Namaqualand, South Africa. Species richness in the three habitats sampled, namely Upland Succulent Karoo, Dry Riverine Shrub and North-western Mountain Renosterveld was low, with only 2–4 species per habitat. Rodents trapped were predominantly Gerbillurus paeba and Aethomys namaquensis, with fewer Mus minutoides and Petromyscus sp. The only non-rodent was the elephant shrew Elephantulus edwardii. Ten habitat features, the percentage of total plant cover, tree cover, shrub cover, grass cover, plant litter, total basal cover, sand, gravel or rock cover, and the dominant plant height were recorded at 30 randomly chosen points on five sampling grids in each habitat. Small mammal density and biomass was significantly correlated with food availability (green foliage cover, seeds, and relative density and biomass of insects. Species richness and diversity of small mammals were significantly correlated with shrub cover. Numbers and biomass of specific species correlated significantly with different habitat features in each case.

  1. Flat and complex temperate reefs provide similar support for fish: Evidence for a unimodal species-habitat relationship.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avery B Paxton

    Full Text Available Structural complexity, a form of habitat heterogeneity, influences the structure and function of ecological communities, generally supporting increased species density, richness, and diversity. Recent research, however, suggests the most complex habitats may not harbor the highest density of individuals and number of species, especially in areas with elevated human influence. Understanding nuances in relationships between habitat heterogeneity and ecological communities is warranted to guide habitat-focused conservation and management efforts. We conducted fish and structural habitat surveys of thirty warm-temperate reefs on the southeastern US continental shelf to quantify how structural complexity influences fish communities. We found that intermediate complexity maximizes fish abundance on natural and artificial reefs, as well as species richness on natural reefs, challenging the current paradigm that abundance and other fish community metrics increase with increasing complexity. Naturally occurring rocky reefs of flat and complex morphologies supported equivalent abundance, biomass, species richness, and community composition of fishes. For flat and complex morphologies of rocky reefs to receive equal consideration as essential fish habitat (EFH, special attention should be given to detecting pavement type rocky reefs because their ephemeral nature makes them difficult to detect with typical seafloor mapping methods. Artificial reefs of intermediate complexity also maximized fish abundance, but human-made structures composed of low-lying concrete and metal ships differed in community types, with less complex, concrete structures supporting lower numbers of fishes classified largely as demersal species and metal ships protruding into the water column harboring higher numbers of fishes, including more pelagic species. Results of this study are essential to the process of evaluating habitat function provided by different types and shapes of

  2. Deepwater Program: Studies of Gulf of Mexico lower continental slope communities related to chemosynthetic and hard substrate habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, Steve W.; Demopoulos, Amanda W.J.; Kellogg, Christina A.; Morrison, Cheryl L.; Nizinski, Martha S.; Ames, Cheryl L.; Casazza, Tara L.; Gualtieri, Daniel; Kovacs, Kaitlin; McClain, Jennifer P.; Quattrini, Andrea M.; Roa-Varon, Adela Y.; Thaler, Andrew D.

    2012-01-01

    This report summarizes research funded by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW) on the ecology of deep chemosynthetic communities in the Gulf of Mexico. The research was conducted at the request of the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE; formerly Minerals Management Service) to complement a BOEMRE-funded project titled "Deepwater Program: Investigations of Chemosynthetic Communities on the Lower Continental Slope of the Gulf of Mexico." The overall research partnership, known as "Chemo III," was initiated to increase understanding of the distribution, structure, function, and vulnerabilities of these poorly known associations of animals and microbes for water depths greater than 1,000 meters (m) in the Gulf of Mexico. Chemosynthetic communities rely on carbon sources that are largely independent of sunlight and photosynthetic food webs. Despite recent research directed toward chemosynthetic and deep coral (for example, Lophelia pertusa) based ecosystems, these habitats are still poorly studied, especially at depths greater than 1,000 m. With the progression into deeper waters by fishing and energy industries, developing sufficient knowledge to manage these deep ecosystems is essential. Increased understanding of deep-sea communities will enable sound evaluations of potential impacts and appropriate mitigations.

  3. Does Habitat Restoration Increase Coexistence of Native Stream Fishes with Introduced Brown Trout: A Case Study on the Middle Provo River, Utah, USA

    OpenAIRE

    Mark C. Belk; Eric J. Billman; Craig Ellsworth; Brock R. McMillan

    2016-01-01

    Restoration of altered or degraded habitats is often a key component in the conservation plan of native aquatic species, but introduced species may influence the response of the native community to restoration. Recent habitat restoration of the middle section of the Provo River in central Utah, USA, provided an opportunity to evaluate the effect of habitat restoration on the native fish community in a system with an introduced, dominant predator—brown trout (Salmo trutta). To determine the ch...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Burlington Bottoms, Technical Report 1993-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beilke, Susan

    1993-08-01

    Burlington Bottoms, consisting of approximately 417 acres of riparian and wetland habitat, was purchased by the Bonneville Power Administration in November 1991. The site is located approximately 1/2 mile north of the Sauvie Island Bridge (T2N R1W Sections 20, 21), and is bound on the east side by Multnomah Channel and on the west side by the Burlington Northern Railroad right-of-way and U.S. Highway 30 (Figures 1 and 2). Wildlife habitat values resulting from the purchase of this site will contribute toward the goal of mitigating for habitat lost as outlined in the Columbia and Willamette River Basin's Fish and Wildlife Program and Amendments. Under this Program, mitigation goals were developed as a result of the loss of wildlife habitat due to the development and operation of Federal hydro-electric facilities in the Columbia and Willamette River Basins. In 1993, an interdisciplinary team was formed to develop and implement quantitative Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) to document the value of various habitats at Burlington Bottoms. Results of the HEP will be used to: (1) determine the current status and habitat enhancement potential of the site consistent with wildlife mitigation goals and objectives; and (2) develop a management plan for the area. HEP participants included; Charlie Craig, BPA; Pat Wright, Larry Rasmussen, and Ron Garst, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service; John Christy, The Nature Conservancy; and Doug Cottam, Sue Beilke, and Brad Rawls, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

  6. Seasonal soil moisture patterns in contrasting habitats in the Willamette Valley, Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Changing seasonal soil moisture regimes caused by global warming may alter plant community composition in sensitive habitats such as wetlands and oak savannas. To evaluate such changes, an understanding of typical seasonal soil moisture regimes is necessary. The primary objective...

  7. Habitat conditions drive phylogenetic structure of dominant bacterial phyla of microbialite communities from different locations in Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centeno, Carla M; Mejía, Omar; Falcón, Luisa I

    2016-09-01

    Community structure and composition are dictated by evolutionary and ecological assembly processes which are manifested in signals of, species diversity, species abundance and species relatedness. Analysis of species coexisting relatedness, has received attention as a tool to identify the processes that influence the composition of a community within a particular habitat. In this study, we tested if microbialite genetic composition is dependent on random events versus biological/abiotical factors. This study was based on a large genetic data set of two hypervariable regions (V5 and V6) from previously generated barcoded 16S rRNA amplicons from nine microbialite communities distributed in Northeastern, Central and Southeastern Mexico collected in May and June of 2009. Genetic data of the most abundant phyla (Proteobacteria, Planctomycetes, Verrucomicrobia, Bacteroidetes, and Cyanobacteria) were investigated in order to state the phylogenetic structure of the complete communities as well as each phylum. For the complete dataset, Webb NTI index showed positive and significant values in the nine communities analysed, where values ranged from 31.5 in Pozas Azules I to 57.2 in Bacalar Pirate Channel; meanwhile, NRI index were positive and significant in six of the nine communities analysed with values ranging from 18.1 in Pozas Azules I to 45.1 in Río Mesquites. On the other hand, when comparing each individual phylum, NTI index were positive and significant in all groups, except in Cyanobacteria for which positive and significant values were only found in three localities; finally, NRI index was significant in only a few of the comparisons performed. The results suggest that habitat filtering is the main process that drives phylogenetic structure in bacterial communities associated to microbialites with the exception of Cyanobacteria where different lineages can contribute to microbialite formation and growth.

  8. Evaluation of Life History Diversity, Habitat Connectivity, and Survival Benefits Associated with Habitat Restoration Actions in the Lower Columbia River and Estuary, Annual Report 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Diefenderfer, Heida L.; Johnson, Gary E.; Sather, Nichole K.; Skalski, J. R.; Dawley, Earl M.; Coleman, Andre M.; Ostrand, Kenneth G.; Hanson, Kyle C.; Woodruff, Dana L.; Donley, Erin E.; Ke, Yinghai; Buenau, Kate E.; Bryson, Amanda J.; Townsend, Richard L.

    2011-10-01

    This report describes the 2010 research conducted under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) project EST-P-09-1, titled Evaluation of Life History Diversity, Habitat Connectivity, and Survival Benefits Associated with Habitat Restoration Actions in the Lower Columbia River and Estuary, and known as the 'Salmon Benefits' study. The primary goal of the study is to establish scientific methods to quantify habitat restoration benefits to listed salmon and trout in the lower Columbia River and estuary (LCRE) in three required areas: habitat connectivity, early life history diversity, and survival (Figure ES.1). The general study approach was to first evaluate the state of the science regarding the ability to quantify benefits to listed salmon and trout from habitat restoration actions in the LCRE in the 2009 project year, and then, if feasible, in subsequent project years to develop quantitative indices of habitat connectivity, early life history diversity, and survival. Based on the 2009 literature review, the following definitions are used in this study. Habitat connectivity is defined as a landscape descriptor concerning the ability of organisms to move among habitat patches, including the spatial arrangement of habitats (structural connectivity) and how the perception and behavior of salmon affect the potential for movement among habitats (functional connectivity). Life history is defined as the combination of traits exhibited by an organism throughout its life cycle, and for the purposes of this investigation, a life history strategy refers to the body size and temporal patterns of estuarine usage exhibited by migrating juvenile salmon. Survival is defined as the probability of fish remaining alive over a defined amount of space and/or time. The objectives of the 4-year study are as follows: (1) develop and test a quantitative index of juvenile salmon habitat connectivity in the LCRE incorporating structural, functional, and hydrologic components; (2

  9. Impact of habitat diversity on the sampling effort required for the assessment of river fish communities and IBI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Liefferinge, C.; Simoens, I.; Vogt, C.; Cox, T.J.S.; Breine, J.; Ercken, D.; Goethals, P.; Belpaire, C.; Meire, P.

    2010-01-01

    The spatial variation in the fish communities of four small Belgian rivers with variable habitat diversity was investigated by electric fishing to define the minimum sampling distance required for optimal fish stock assessment and determination of the Index of Biotic Integrity. This study shows that

  10. Evaluating the Applicability of Phi Coefficient in Indicating Habitat Preferences of Forest Soil Fauna Based on a Single Field Study in Subtropical China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Yang; Wang, Silong; Yan, Shaokui

    2016-01-01

    Phi coefficient directly depends on the frequencies of occurrence of organisms and has been widely used in vegetation ecology to analyse the associations of organisms with site groups, providing a characterization of ecological preference, but its application in soil ecology remains rare. Based on a single field experiment, this study assessed the applicability of phi coefficient in indicating the habitat preferences of soil fauna, through comparing phi coefficient-induced results with those of ordination methods in charactering soil fauna-habitat(factors) relationships. Eight different habitats of soil fauna were implemented by reciprocal transfer of defaunated soil cores between two types of subtropical forests. Canonical correlation analysis (CCorA) showed that ecological patterns of fauna-habitat relationships and inter-fauna taxa relationships expressed, respectively, by phi coefficients and predicted abundances calculated from partial redundancy analysis (RDA), were extremely similar, and a highly significant relationship between the two datasets was observed (Pillai's trace statistic = 1.998, P = 0.007). In addition, highly positive correlations between phi coefficients and predicted abundances for Acari, Collembola, Nematode and Hemiptera were observed using linear regression analysis. Quantitative relationships between habitat preferences and soil chemical variables were also obtained by linear regression, which were analogous to the results displayed in a partial RDA biplot. Our results suggest that phi coefficient could be applicable on a local scale in evaluating habitat preferences of soil fauna at coarse taxonomic levels, and that the phi coefficient-induced information, such as ecological preferences and the associated quantitative relationships with habitat factors, will be largely complementary to the results of ordination methods. The application of phi coefficient in soil ecology may extend our knowledge about habitat preferences and distribution

  11. Habitat segregation in fish assemblages

    OpenAIRE

    Ibbotson, A.T.

    1990-01-01

    The segregation of habitats of fish assemblages found in the chalk streams and rivers within the Wessex, South West and Southern Water Authority boundaries in southern England have been examined. Habitat segregation is the most frequent type of resource partitioning in natural communities. The habitat of individual fish species will be defined in order to determine the following: (1) the requirements of each species in terms of depth, current velocity, substrate, cover etc.; (2) identify the ...

  12. Wildlife habitats in managed rangelands—the Great Basin of southeastern Oregon: the relationship of terrestrial vertebrates to plant communities and structural conditions (Part 2).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chris Maser; Jack Ward Thomas; Ralph G. Anderson

    1984-01-01

    The relationships of terrestrial vertebrates to plant communities, structural conditions, and special habitats in the Great Basin of southeastern Oregon are described in a series of appendices. The importance of habitat components to wildlife and the predictability of management activities on wildlife are examined in terms of managed rangelands. ...

  13. Comparison of intestinal bacterial communities in grass carp, Ctenopharyngodon idellus, from two different habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni, Jiajia; Yu, Yuhe; Zhang, Tanglin; Gao, Lei

    2012-09-01

    The intestinal bacteria of vertebrates form a close relationship with their host. External and internal conditions of the host, including its habitat, affect the intestinal bacterial community. Similarly, the intestinal bacterial community can, in turn, influence the host, particularly with respect to disease resistance. We compared the intestinal bacterial communities of grass carp that were collected from farm-ponds or a lake. We conducted denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of amplified 16S rRNA genes, from which 66 different operational taxonomic units were identified. Using both the unweighted pair-group method with arithmetic means clustering and principal component analysis ordination, we found that the intestinal bacterial communities from the two groups of pond fish were clustered together and inset into the clusters of wild fish, except for DF-7, and there was no significant correlation between genetic diversity of grass carp and their intestinal bacterial communities (Mantel one-tailed test, R=0.157, P=0.175). Cetobacterium appeared more frequently in the intestine of grass carp collected from pond. A more thorough understanding of the role played by intestinal microbiota on fish health would be of considerable benefit to the aquaculture industry.

  14. Red River Wildlife Management Area HEP Report, Habitat Evaluation Procedures, Technical Report 2004.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul

    2004-11-01

    A habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis conducted on the 314-acre Red River Wildlife Management Area (RRWMA) managed by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game resulted in 401.38 habitat units (HUs). Habitat variables from six habitat suitability index (HSI) models, comprised of mink (Mustela vison), mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), common snipe (Capella gallinago), black-capped chickadee (Parus altricapillus), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), and white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), were measured by Regional HEP Team (RHT) members in August 2004. Cover types included wet meadow, riverine, riparian shrub, conifer forest, conifer forest wetland, and urban. HSI model outputs indicate that the shrub component is lacking in riparian shrub and conifer forest cover types and that snag density should be increased in conifer stands. The quality of wet meadow habitat, comprised primarily of introduced grass species and sedges, could be improved through development of ephemeral open water ponds and increasing the amount of persistent wetland herbaceous vegetation e.g. cattails (Typha spp.) and bulrushes (Scirpus spp.).

  15. Regional and sediment depth differences in nematode community structure greater than between habitats on the New Zealand margin: Implications for vulnerability to anthropogenic disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosli, Norliana; Leduc, Daniel; Rowden, Ashley A.; Probert, P. Keith; Clark, Malcolm R.

    2018-01-01

    Deep-sea community attributes vary at a range of spatial scales. However, identifying the scale at which environmental factors affect variability in deep-sea communities remains difficult, as few studies have been designed in such a way as to allow meaningful comparisons across more than two spatial scales. In the present study, we investigated nematode diversity, community structure and trophic structure at different spatial scales (sediment depth (cm), habitat (seamount, canyon, continental slope; 1-100 km), and geographic region (100-10000 km)), while accounting for the effects of water depth, in two regions on New Zealand's continental margin. The greatest variability in community attributes was found between sediment depth layers and between regions, which explained 2-4 times more variability than habitats. The effect of habitat was consistently stronger in the Hikurangi Margin than the Bay of Plenty for all community attributes, whereas the opposite pattern was found in the Bay of Plenty where effect of sediment depth was greater in Bay of Plenty. The different patterns at each scale in each region reflect the differences in the environmental variables between regions that control nematode community attributes. Analyses suggest that nematode communities are mostly influenced by sediment characteristics and food availability, but that disturbance (fishing activity and bioturbation) also accounts for some of the observed patterns. The results provide new insight on the relative importance of processes operating at different spatial scales in regulating nematode communities in the deep-sea, and indicate potential differences in vulnerability to anthropogenic disturbance.

  16. Complementary habitat use by wild bees in agro-natural landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandelik, Yael; Winfree, Rachael; Neeson, Thomas; Kremen, Claire

    2012-07-01

    Human activity causes abrupt changes in resource availability across the landscape. In order to persist in human-altered landscapes organisms need to shift their habitat use accordingly. Little is known about the mechanisms by which whole communities persist in human-altered landscapes, including the role of complementary habitat use. We define complementary habitat use as the use of different habitats at different times by the same group of species during the course of their activity period. We hypothesize that complementary habitat use is a mechanism through which native bee species persist in human-altered landscapes. To test this idea, we studied wild bee communities in agro-natural landscapes and explored their community-level patterns of habitat and resource use over space and time. The study was conducted in six agro-natural landscapes in the eastern United States, each containing three main bee habitat types (natural habitat, agricultural fields, and old fields). Each of the three habitats exhibited a unique seasonal pattern in amount, diversity, and composition of floral resources, and together they created phenological complementarity in foraging resources for bees. Individual bee species as well as the bee community responded to these spatiotemporal patterns in floral availability and exhibited a parallel pattern of complementary habitat use. The majority of wild bee species, including all the main crop visitors, used fallow areas within crops early in the season, shifted to crops in mid-season, and used old-field habitats later in the season. The natural-forest habitat supported very limited number of bees, mostly visitors of non-crop plants. Old fields are thus an important feature in these arable landscapes for maintaining crop pollination services. Our study provides a detailed examination of how shifts in habitat and resource use may enable bees to persist in highly dynamic agro-natural landscapes, and points to the need for a broad cross-habitat

  17. Diversity and Community Composition of Vertebrates in Desert River Habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Free, C. L.; Baxter, G. S.; Dickman, C. R.; Lisle, A.; Leung, L. K.-P.

    2015-01-01

    Animal species are seldom distributed evenly at either local or larger spatial scales, and instead tend to aggregate in sites that meet their resource requirements and maximise fitness. This tendency is likely to be especially marked in arid regions where species could be expected to concentrate at resource-rich oases. In this study, we first test the hypothesis that productive riparian sites in arid Australia support higher vertebrate diversity than other desert habitats, and then elucidate the habitats selected by different species. We addressed the first aim by examining the diversity and composition of vertebrate assemblages inhabiting the Field River and adjacent sand dunes in the Simpson Desert, western Queensland, over a period of two and a half years. The second aim was addressed by examining species composition in riparian and sand dune habitats in dry and wet years. Vertebrate species richness was estimated to be highest (54 species) in the riverine habitats and lowest on the surrounding dune habitats (45 species). The riverine habitats had different species pools compared to the dune habitats. Several species, including the agamid Gowidon longirostris and tree frog Litoria rubella, inhabited the riverine habitats exclusively, while others such as the skinks Ctenotus ariadnae and C. dux were captured only in the dune habitats. The results suggest that, on a local scale, diversity is higher along riparian corridors and that riparian woodland is important for tree-dependent species. Further, the distribution of some species, such as Mus musculus, may be governed by environmental variables (e.g. soil moisture) associated with riparian corridors that are not available in the surrounding desert environment. We conclude that inland river systems may be often of high conservation value, and that management should be initiated where possible to alleviate threats to their continued functioning. PMID:26637127

  18. The Effects of the Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program on Targeted Life Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Kevin; Elmore, R. Dwayne

    2012-01-01

    Does participation in the Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program (WHEP) help develop life skills? 4-H members and coaches who participated in the National WHEP Contest between the years 2003-2005 and 2007-2009 were asked to complete an evaluation at the end of each contest. A portion of the evaluation asked participants and coaches to determine if…

  19. River Discharge and Local Scale Habitat Influence LIFE Score Macroinvertebrate LIFE Scores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dunbar, Michael J.; Pedersen, Morten Lauge; Cadman, Dan

    2010-01-01

    Midlands of the U.K., we describe how local-scale habitat features (indexed through River Habitat Survey or Danish Habitat Quality Survey) and changing river flow (discharge) influence the response of a macroinvertebrate community index. The approach has broad applicability in developing regional flow...... Invertebrate index for Flow Evaluation (LIFE), an average of abundance-weighted flow groups which indicate the microhabitat preferences of each taxon for higher velocities and clean gravel/cobble substrata or slow/still velocities and finer substrata. 3. For the Danish fauna, the LIFE score responded to three...... of the channel (negative). In both cases, LIFE responded negatively to features associated with historical channel modification. We suggest that there are several mechanisms for these relationships, including the narrower tolerances of taxa preferring high velocity habitat; these taxa are also continually...

  20. Wildlife habitats in managed rangelands—the Great Basin of southeastern Oregon: the relationship of terrestrial vertebrates to plant communities and structural conditions (Part 1).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chris Maser; Jack Ward Thomas; Ralph G. Anderson

    1984-01-01

    The relationships of terrestrial vertebrates to plant communities, structural conditions, and special habitats in the Great Basin of southeastern Oregon are described. The importance of habitat components to wildlife and the predictability of management activities on wildlife are examined in terms of managed rangelands. The paper does not provide guidelines but rather...

  1. Disturbance by an endemic rodent in an arid shrubland is a habitat filter: effects on plant invasion and taxonomical, functional and phylogenetic community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobedo, Víctor M; Rios, Rodrigo S; Salgado-Luarte, Cristian; Stotz, Gisela C; Gianoli, Ernesto

    2017-03-01

    Disturbance often drives plant invasion and may modify community assembly. However, little is known about how these modifications of community patterns occur in terms of taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic structure. This study evaluated in an arid shrubland the influence of disturbance by an endemic rodent on community functional divergence and phylogenetic structure as well as on plant invasion. It was expected that disturbance would operate as a habitat filter favouring exotic species with short life cycles. Sixteen plots were sampled along a disturbance gradient caused by the endemic fossorial rodent Spalacopus cyanus , measuring community parameters and estimating functional divergence for life history traits (functional dispersion index) and the relative contribution to functional divergence of exotic and native species. The phylogenetic signal (Pagel's lambda) and phylogenetic community structure (mean phylogenetic distance and mean nearest taxon phylogenetic distance) were also estimated. The use of a continuous approach to the disturbance gradient allowed the identification of non-linear relationships between disturbance and community parameters. The relationship between disturbance and both species richness and abundance was positive for exotic species and negative for native species. Disturbance modified community composition, and exotic species were associated with more disturbed sites. Disturbance increased trait convergence, which resulted in phylogenetic clustering because traits showed a significant phylogenetic signal. The relative contribution of exotic species to functional divergence increased, while that of natives decreased, with disturbance. Exotic and native species were not phylogenetically distinct. Disturbance by rodents in this arid shrubland constitutes a habitat filter over phylogeny-dependent life history traits, leading to phylogenetic clustering, and drives invasion by favouring species with short life cycles. Results can be

  2. A concept for extraction of habitat features from laser scanning and hypersprectral imaging for evaluation of Natura 2000 sites - the ChangeHabitats2 project approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Székely, B.; Kania, A.; Pfeifer, N.; Heilmeier, H.; Tamás, J.; Szöllősi, N.; Mücke, W.

    2012-04-01

    The goal of the ChangeHabitats2 project is the development of cost- and time-efficient habitat assessment strategies by employing effective field work techniques supported by modern airborne remote sensing methods, i.e. hyperspectral imagery and laser scanning (LiDAR). An essential task of the project is the design of a novel field work technique that on the one hand fulfills the reporting requirements of the Flora-Fauna-Habitat (FFH-) directive and on the other hand serves as a reference for the aerial data analysis. Correlations between parameters derived from remotely sensed data and terrestrial field measurements shall be exploited in order to create half- or fully-automated methods for the extraction of relevant Natura2000 habitat parameters. As a result of these efforts a comprehensive conceptual model has been developed for extraction and integration of Natura 2000 relevant geospatial data. This scheme is an attempt to integrate various activities within ChangeHabitats2 project defining pathways of development, as well as encompassing existing data processing chains, theoretical approaches and field work. The conceptual model includes definition of processing levels (similar to those existing in remote sensing), whereas these levels cover the range from the raw data to the extracted habitat feature. For instance, the amount of dead wood (standing or lying on the surface) is an important evaluation criterion for the habitat. The tree trunks lying on the ground surface typically can be extracted from the LiDAR point cloud, and the amount of wood can be estimated accordingly. The final result will be considered as a habitat feature derived from laser scanning data. Furthermore, we are also interested not only in the determination of the specific habitat feature, but also in the detection of its variations (especially in deterioration). In this approach the variation of this important habitat feature is considered to be a differential habitat feature, that can

  3. Effects of habitat management on different feeding guilds of herbivorous insects in cacao agroforestry systems

    OpenAIRE

    Novais, Samuel M. A.; Macedo-Reis, Luiz E.; DaRocha, Wesley D.; Neves, Frederico S.

    2016-01-01

    AbstractHuman pressure on natural habitats increases the importance of agroforests for biodiversity conservation. The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of cacao traditional cultivation system (CTCS) on the conservation of the herbivorous insect community when compared with a monodominant rubber agroforest, a type of agricultural system for cacao cultivation. The insects were sampled in three habitats in Southeastern Bahia, Brazil: native forests, CTCS and rubber agroforests. In...

  4. Spatial patterns in gravel habitats and communities in the central and eastern English Channel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coggan, Roger; Barrio Froján, Christopher R. S.; Diesing, Markus; Aldridge, John

    2012-10-01

    The distribution of sediment type and benthic communities in the central and eastern English Channel is shown to be polarised around a distinctive local hydrodynamic feature. The seabed in the region includes an extensive area of gravel substrate which is both an important habitat for benthic marine fauna and a valuable source of material for the marine aggregate industry. Effective management of the area is predicated on an understanding of whether it represents a single homogeneous unit, or several different units that may need to be managed in different ways. The aim of this study was to provide information that would inform such management decisions. Spatial patterns in gravel habitats and communities were studied by investigating the physical environment through modelled and empirical data, and the distribution of infauna and epifauna along an east-west trending transect. A common spatial pattern was observed in both physical and biological parameters, but rather than indicating a simple longitudinal gradient, there was a distinct polarisation around a central feature, a bedload parting (BLP) zone situated between the Isle of Wight and Cotentin peninsula. Sediments and communities at the eastern and western ends of the transect were more similar to each other than to those in the middle. The strong hydrodynamic regime in the BLP area controls sediment distribution, transporting finer material, mainly sand, away from the mid transect area. The pattern in sand content of the substrate mirrors the magnitude of the potential bedload transport, which is complex in this region due to the interplay between the M2 and M4 tidal constituents and produced a series of erosional and depositional zones. The structure of benthic communities reflected the local substrate and hydrodynamic conditions, with sponges observed among the stable substrates and stronger currents that characterised the mid transect area, while infauna became more diverse towards the ends of the

  5. A meta-analysis of lesser prairie-chicken nesting and brood-rearing habitats: implications for habitat management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, Christian A.; Grisham, Blake A.; Boal, Clint W.; Haukos, David A.

    2013-01-01

    The distribution and range of lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) has been reduced by >90% since European settlement of the Great Plains of North America. Currently, lesser prairie-chickens occupy 3 general vegetation communities: sand sagebrush (Artemisia filifolia), sand shinnery oak (Quercus havardii), and mixed-grass prairies juxtaposed with Conservation Reserve Program grasslands. As a candidate for protection under the Endangered Species Act, there is a need for a synthesis that characterizes habitat structure rangewide. Thus, we conducted a meta-analysis of vegetation characteristics at nest sites and brood habitats to determine whether there was an overall effect (Hedges' d) of habitat selection and to estimate average (95% CI) habitat characteristics at use sites. We estimated effect sizes (di) from the difference between use (nests and brood sites) and random sampling sites for each study (n = 14), and derived an overall effect size (d++). There was a general effect for habitat selection as evidenced by low levels of variation in effect sizes across studies and regions. There was a small to medium effect (d++) = 0.20-0.82) of selection for greater vertical structure (visual obstruction) by nesting females in both vegetation communities, and selection against bare ground (d++ = 0.20-0.58). Females with broods exhibited less selectivity for habitat components except for vertical structure. The variation of d++ was greater during nesting than brooding periods, signifying a seasonal shift in habitat use, and perhaps a greater range of tolerance for brood-rearing habitat. The overall estimates of vegetation cover were consistent with those provided in management guidelines for the species.

  6. Evaluation of Life History Diversity, Habitat Connectivity, and Survival Benefits Associated with Habitat Restoration Actions in the Lower Columbia River and Estuary, Annual Report 2009

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Diefenderfer, Heida L.; Johnson, Gary E.; Sather, Nichole K.; Skalski, John R.; Dawley, Earl M.; Coleman, Andre M.

    2010-08-01

    This report describes the 2009 research conducted under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE or Corps) project EST-09-P-01, titled “Evaluation of Life History Diversity, Habitat Connectivity, and Survival Benefits Associated with Habitat Restoration Actions in the Lower Columbia River and Estuary.” The research was conducted by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Marine Science Laboratory and Hydrology Group, in partnership with the University of Washington, School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, Columbia Basin Research, and Earl Dawley (NOAA Fisheries, retired). This Columbia River Fish Mitigation Program project, referred to as “Salmonid Benefits,” was started in FY 2009 to evaluate the state-of-the science regarding the ability to quantify the benefits to listed salmonids1 of habitat restoration actions in the lower Columbia River and estuary.

  7. Evaluating stream trout habitat on large-scale aerial color photographs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace J. Greentree; Robert C. Aldrich

    1976-01-01

    Large-scale aerial color photographs were used to evaluate trout habitat by studying stream and streambank conditions. Ninety-two percent of these conditions could be identified correctly on the color photographs. Color photographs taken 1 year apart showed that rehabilitation efforts resulted in stream vegetation changes. Water depth was correlated with film density:...

  8. Bacterial community composition and potential driving factors in different reef habitats of the Spermonde Archipelago, Indonesia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kegler, Hauke F.; Lukman, Muhammad; Teichberg, Mirta

    2017-01-01

    Coastal eutrophication is a key driver of shifts in bacterial communities on coral reefs. With fringing and patch reefs at varying distances from the coast the Spermonde Archipelago in southern Sulawesi, Indonesia offers ideal conditions to study the effects of coastal eutrophication along...... a spatially defined gradient. The present study investigated bacterial community composition of three coral reef habitats: the water column, sediments, and mucus of the hard coral genus Fungia, along that cross shelf environmental and water quality gradient. The main research questions were: (1) How do water....../Shigella (Gammaproteobacteria) and Raistonia (Betaproteobacteria), respectively, both dominated the bacterial community composition of the both size fractions of the water column and coral mucus. The sampled reef sediments were more diverse, and no single OTUs was dominant. There was no gradual shift in bacterial classes...

  9. An approach of habitat degradation assessment for characterization on coastal habitat conservation tendency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Xi-Yin; Lei, Kun; Meng, Wei

    2017-09-01

    Coastal zones are population and economy highly intensity regions all over the world, and coastal habitat supports the sustainable development of human society. The accurate assessment of coastal habitat degradation is the essential prerequisite for coastal zone protection. In this study, an integrated framework of coastal habitat degradation assessment including landuse classification, habitat classifying and zoning, evaluation criterion of coastal habitat degradation and coastal habitat degradation index has been established for better regional coastal habitat assessment. Through establishment of detailed three-class landuse classification, the fine landscape change is revealed, the evaluation criterion of coastal habitat degradation through internal comparison based on the results of habitat classifying and zoning could indicate the levels of habitat degradation and distinguish the intensity of human disturbances in different habitat subareas under the same habitat classification. Finally, the results of coastal habitat degradation assessment could be achieved through coastal habitat degradation index (CHI). A case study of the framework is carried out in the Circum-Bohai-Sea-Coast, China, and the main results show the following: (1) The accuracy of all land use classes are above 90%, which indicates a satisfactory accuracy for the classification map. (2) The Circum-Bohai-Sea-Coast is divided into 3 kinds of habitats and 5 subareas. (3) In the five subareas of the Circum-Bohai-Sea-Coast, the levels of coastal habitat degradation own significant difference. The whole Circum-Bohai-Sea-Coast generally is in a worse state according to area weighting of each habitat subarea. This assessment framework of coastal habitat degradation would characterize the landuse change trend, realize better coastal habitat degradation assessment, reveal the habitat conservation tendency and distinguish intensity of human disturbances. Furthermore, it would support for accurate coastal

  10. Evaluating the habitat capability model for Merriam's turkeys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark A. Rumble; Stanley H. Anderson

    1995-01-01

    Habitat capability (HABCAP) models for wildlife assist land managers in predicting the consequences of their management decisions. Models must be tested and refined prior to using them in management planning. We tested the predicted patterns of habitat selection of the R2 HABCAP model using observed patterns of habitats selected by radio-marked Merriam’s turkey (

  11. Comparing wildlife habitat and biodiversity across green roof type

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coffman, R.R. [Oklahoma Univ., Tulsa, OK (United States). Dept. of Landscape Architecture

    2007-07-01

    Green roofs represent restorative practices within human dominated ecosystems. They create habitat, increase local biodiversity, and restore ecosystem function. Cities are now promoting this technology as a part of mitigation for the loss of local habitat, making the green roof necessary in sustainable development. While most green roofs create some form of habitat for local and migratory fauna, some systems are designed to provide specific habitat for species of concern. Despite this, little is actually known about the wildlife communities inhabiting green roofs. Only a few studies have provided broad taxa descriptions across a range of green roof habitats, and none have attempted to measure the biodiversity across green roof class. Therefore, this study examined two different vegetated roof systems representative of North America. They were constructed under alternative priorities such as energy, stormwater and aesthetics. The wildlife community appears to be a result of the green roof's physical composition. Wildlife community composition and biodiversity is expected be different yet comparable between the two general types of green roofs, known as extensive and intensive. This study recorded the community composition found in the two classes of ecoroofs and assessed biodiversity and similarity at the community and group taxa levels of insects, spiders and birds. Renyi family of diversity indices were used to compare the communities. They were further described through indices and ratios such as Shannon's, Simpson's, Sorenson and Morsita's. In general, community biodiversity was found to be slightly higher in the intensive green roof than the extensive green roof. 26 refs., 4 tabs., 4 figs.

  12. Habitat template approach for green roofs using a native rocky sea coast plant community in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagase, Ayako; Tashiro-Ishii, Yurika

    2018-01-15

    The present study examined whether it is possible to simulate a local herbaceous coastal plant community on a roof, by studying the natural habitats of rocky sea coast plants and their propagation and performance on a green roof. After studying the natural habitat of coastal areas in Izu peninsula, a germination and cutting transplant study was carried out using herbaceous plants from the Jogasaki sea coast. Many plant species did not germinate at all and the use of cuttings was a better method than direct seeding. The green roof was installed in the spring of 2012 in Chiba city. Thirteen plant species from the Jogasaki sea coast, which were successfully propagated, were planted in three kinds of substrate (15 cm depth): pumice, roof tile and commercial green roof substrate. The water drainage was restricted and a reservoir with 5 cm depth of water underlaid the substrate to simulate a similar growing environment to the sea coast. Volcanic rocks were placed as mulch to create a landscape similar to that on the Jogasaki sea coast. Plant coverage on the green roof was measured every month from June 2012 to October 2014. All plants were harvested and their dry shoot weight was measured in December 2014. The type of substrate did not cause significant differences in plant survival and dry shoot weight. Sea coast plant species were divided into four categories: vigorous growth; seasonal change; disappearing after a few years; limited growth. Understanding the ecology of natural habitats was important to simulating a local landscape using native plant communities on the green roof. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Microbial Biofilm Community Variation in Flowing Habitats: Potential Utility as Bioindicators of Postmortem Submersion Intervals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer M. Lang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Biofilms are a ubiquitous formation of microbial communities found on surfaces in aqueous environments. These structures have been investigated as biomonitoring indicators for stream heath, and here were used for the potential use in forensic sciences. Biofilm successional development has been proposed as a method to determine the postmortem submersion interval (PMSI of remains because there are no standard methods for estimating the PMSI and biofilms are ubiquitous in aquatic habitats. We sought to compare the development of epinecrotic (biofilms on Sus scrofa domesticus carcasses and epilithic (biofilms on unglazed ceramic tiles communities in two small streams using bacterial automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis. Epinecrotic communities were significantly different from epilithic communities even though environmental factors associated with each stream location also had a significant influence on biofilm structure. All communities at both locations exhibited significant succession suggesting that changing communities throughout time is a general characteristic of stream biofilm communities. The implications resulting from this work are that epinecrotic communities have distinctive shifts at the first and second weeks, and therefore the potential to be used in forensic applications by associating successional changes with submersion time to estimate a PMSI. The influence of environmental factors, however, indicates the lack of a successional pattern with the same organisms and a focus on functional diversity may be more applicable in a forensic context.

  14. Two-dimensional physical habitat modeling of effects of habitat structures on urban stream restoration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dongkyun Im

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available River corridors, even if highly modified or degraded, still provide important habitats for numerous biological species, and carry high aesthetic and economic values. One of the keys to urban stream restoration is recovery and maintenance of ecological flows sufficient to sustain aquatic ecosystems. In this study, the Hongje Stream in the Seoul metropolitan area of Korea was selected for evaluating a physically-based habitat with and without habitat structures. The potential value of the aquatic habitat was evaluated by a weighted usable area (WUA using River2D, a two-dimensional hydraulic model. The habitat suitability for Zacco platypus in the Hongje Stream was simulated with and without habitat structures. The computed WUA values for the boulder, spur dike, and riffle increased by about 2%, 7%, and 131%, respectively, after their construction. Also, the three habitat structures, especially the riffle, can contribute to increasing hydraulic heterogeneity and enhancing habitat diversity.

  15. Characterization of habitat and biological communities at fixed sites in the Great Salt Lake basins, Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming, water years 1999-2001

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albano, Christine M.; Giddings, Elise M.P.

    2007-01-01

    Habitat and biological communities were sampled at 10 sites in the Great Salt Lake Basins as part of the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Assessment program to assess the occurrence and distribution of biological organisms in relation to environmental conditions. Sites were distributed among the Bear River, Weber River, and Utah Lake/Jordan River basins and were selected to represent stream conditions in different land-use settings that are prominent within the basins, including agriculture, rangeland, urban, and forested.High-gradient streams had more diverse habitat conditions with larger substrates and more dynamic flow characteristics and were typically lower in discharge than low-gradient streams, which had a higher degree of siltation and lacked variability in geomorphic channel characteristics, which may account for differences in habitat. Habitat scores were higher at high-gradient sites with high percentages of forested land use within their basins. Sources and causes of stream habitat impairment included effects from channel modifications, siltation, and riparian land use. Effects of hydrologic modifications were evident at many sites.Algal sites where colder temperatures, less nutrient enrichment, and forest and rangeland uses dominated the basins contained communities that were more sensitive to organic pollution, siltation, dissolved oxygen, and salinity than sites that were warmer, had higher degrees of nutrient enrichment, and were affected by agriculture and urban land uses. Sites that had high inputs of solar radiation and generally were associated with agricultural land use supported the greatest number of algal species.Invertebrate samples collected from sites where riffles were the richest-targeted habitat differed in species composition and pollution tolerance from those collected at sites that did not have riffle habitat (nonriffle sites), where samples were collected in depositional areas, woody snags, or macrophyte beds

  16. Hunting or habitat? Drivers of waterbird abundance and community structure in agricultural wetlands of southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Ramesh; Kumar, Ajith; Gopi Sundar, Kolla S; Bhalla, Ravinder Singh

    2017-09-01

    The relative impacts of hunting and habitat on waterbird community were studied in agricultural wetlands of southern India. We surveyed wetlands to document waterbird community, and interviewed hunters to document hunting intensity, targeted species, and the motivations for hunting. Our results show that hunting leads to drastic declines in waterbird diversity and numbers, and skew the community towards smaller species. Hunting intensity, water spread, and vegetation cover were the three most important determinants of waterbird abundance and community structure. Species richness, density of piscivorous species, and medium-sized species (31-65 cm) were most affected by hunting. Out of 53 species recorded, 47 were hunted, with a preference for larger birds. Although illegal, hunting has increased in recent years and is driven by market demand. This challenges the widely held belief that waterbird hunting in India is a low intensity, subsistence activity, and undermines the importance of agricultural wetlands in waterbird conservation.

  17. Habitat Fragmentation and Native Bees: a Premature Verdict?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James H. Cane

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available Few studies directly address the consequences of habitat fragmentation for communities of pollinating insects, particularly for the key pollinator group, bees (Hymenoptera: Apiformes. Bees typically live in habitats where nesting substrates and bloom are patchily distributed and spatially dissociated. Bee studies have all defined habitat fragments as remnant patches of floral hosts or forests, overlooking the nesting needs of bees. Several authors conclude that habitat fragmentation is broadly deleterious, but their own data show that some native species proliferate in sampled fragments. Other studies report greater densities and comparable diversities of native bees at flowers in some fragment size classes relative to undisrupted habitats, but find dramatic shifts in species composition. Insightful studies of habitat fragmentation and bees will consider fragmentation, alteration, and loss of nesting habitats, not just patches of forage plants, as well as the permeability of the surrounding matrix to interpatch movement. Inasmuch as the floral associations and nesting habits of bees are often attributes of species or subgenera, ecological interpretations hinge on authoritative identifications. Study designs must accommodate statistical problems associated with bee community samples, especially non-normal data and frequent zero values. The spatial scale of fragmentation must be appreciated: bees of medium body size can regularly fly 1-2 km from nest site to forage patch. Overall, evidence for prolonged persistence of substantial diversity and abundances of native bee communities in habitat fragments of modest size promises practical solutions for maintaining bee populations. Provided that reserve selection, design, and management can address the foraging and nesting needs of bees, networks of even small reserves may hold hope for sustaining considerable pollinator diversity and the ecological services pollinators provide.

  18. Evaluation of osprey habitat suitability and interaction with contaminant exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toschik, P.C.; Christman, M.C.; Rattner, B.A.; Ottinger, M.A.

    2006-01-01

    Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) have been the focus of conservation efforts since their dramatic population decline attributed to dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane and related chemicals in the 1960s. Several recent studies of ospreys nesting in the United States have indicated improved reproduction. However, the density of breeding ospreys varies greatly among locations, with some areas seemingly habitable but not occupied. Because of concerns about pollution in the highly industrialized portions of the Delaware River and Bay, USA, we evaluated contaminant exposure and productivity in ospreys nesting on the Delaware River and Bay in 2002. We characterized habitat in the coastal zone of Delaware, USA, and the area around the river in Pennsylvania, USA, using data we collected as well as extant information provided by state and federal sources. We characterized habitat based on locations of occupied osprey nests in Delaware and Pennsylvania. We evaluated water clarity, water depth, land use and land cover, nest availability, and contaminants in sediment for use in a nest-occupancy model. Our results demonstrated that the presence of occupied nests was associated with water depth, water clarity, distance to an occupied osprey nest, and presence of urban land use, whereas a companion study demonstrated that hatching success was associated with the principal components derived from organochlorine-contaminant concentrations in osprey eggs (total polychlorinated biphenyls, p,p'-dichlorodiphenylethylene, chlordane and metabolites, and heptachlor epoxide). Our study provides guidelines for resource managers and local conservation organizations in management of ospreys and in development of habitat models that are appropriate for other piscivorous and marsh-nesting birds.

  19. Heterogeneity of bird communities in a mosaic of habitats on a restinga ecosystem in southeast Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Verônica S. da M. Gomes

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Restinga occurs as a narrow band of coastal habitats throughout the Atlantic Forest, although it presents considerable variation in vegetation structure, which likely contributes to heterogeneity in species inhabiting this endangered ecosystem. The goal of this study is to examine how variation in vegetation and abiotic conditions in the restinga ecosystem may contribute to heterogeneity of bird communities in Restinga de Jurubatiba, Brazil. Temperature, relative humidity, and vegetation structure were sampled to characterize four sites (dry forest, flooded forest, open scrub and closed scrub. Birds were sampled using observations, mist-netting and voice recordings. Results indicate that major differences of all variables occur between forest and scrub in both vegetation and birds. In addition, differences also exist within forests and within scrub, resulting in considerable heterogeneity among sampled areas. Scrub sites were richer in bird species (n = 58 than forest sites (n = 41, while closed scrub had the most species (n = 49. Also, 64% (47 of 73 of bird species were exclusive to forest or scrub habitats. Scrub habitats were more similar to each other than forest habitats. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI calculated from satellite images distinguished scrub sites and may be useful to monitor changes in vegetation patches through time. The restinga ecosystem is quite heterogeneous with considerable turnover in bird species composition and differences in vegetation structure. Forest strips may serve as connectors on the landscape and to help maintain species diversity and conservation of forest species. Also, this highly dynamic ecosystem, which includes a mosaic of habitat types, likely promotes resilience of bird populations under changing conditions.

  20. Kootenai River Wildlife Habitat Enhancement Project : Long-term Bighorn Sheep/Mule Deer Winter and Spring Habitat Improvement Project : Wildlife Mitigation Project, Libby Dam, Montana : Management Plan.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yde, Chis

    1990-06-01

    The Libby hydroelectric project, located on the Kootenai River in northwestern Montana, resulted in several impacts to the wildlife communities which occupied the habitats inundated by Lake Koocanusa. Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, in cooperation with the other management agencies, developed an impact assessment and a wildlife and wildlife habitat mitigation plan for the Libby hydroelectric facility. In response to the mitigation plan, Bonneville Power Administration funded a cooperative project between the Kootenai National Forest and Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks to develop a long-term habitat enhancement plan for the bighorn sheep and mule deer winter and spring ranges adjacent to Lake Koocanusa. The project goal is to rehabilitate 3372 acres of bighorn sheep and 16,321 acres of mule deer winter and spring ranges on Kootenai National Forest lands adjacent to Lake Koocanusa and to monitor and evaluate the effects of implementing this habitat enhancement work. 2 refs.

  1. Evaluate the Restoration Potential of Snake River Fall Chinook Salmon Spawning Habitat, Status Report 2006.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanrahan, T.P. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

    2009-01-08

    The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) Project 2003-038-00, Evaluate the restoration potential of Snake River fall Chinook salmon spawning habitat, began in FY04 (15 December 2003) and continues into FY06. This status report is intended to summarize accomplishments during FY04 and FY05. Accomplishments are summarized by Work Elements, as detailed in the Statement of Work (see BPA's project management database PISCES). This project evaluates the restoration potential of mainstem habitats for fall Chinook salmon. The studies address two research questions: 'Are there sections not currently used by spawning fall Chinook salmon within the impounded lower Snake River that possess the physical characteristics for potentially suitable fall Chinook spawning habitat?' and 'Can hydrosystem operations affecting these sections be adjusted such that the sections closely resemble the physical characteristics of current fall Chinook salmon spawning areas in similar physical settings?' Efforts are focused at two study sites: (1) the Ice Harbor Dam tailrace downstream to the Columbia River confluence, and (2) the Lower Granite Dam tailrace. Our previous studies indicated that these two areas have the highest potential for restoring Snake River fall Chinook salmon spawning habitat. The study sites will be evaluated under existing structural configurations at the dams (i.e., without partial removal of a dam structure), and alternative operational scenarios (e.g., varying forebay/tailwater elevations). The areas studied represent tailwater habitat (i.e., riverine segments extending from a dam downstream to the backwater influence from the next dam downstream). We are using a reference site, indicative of current fall Chinook salmon spawning areas in tailwater habitat, against which to compare the physical characteristics of each study site. The reference site for tailwater habitats is the section extending downstream from the Wanapum Dam tailrace on the

  2. Concept of Operations Evaluation for Mitigating Space Flight-Relevant Medical Issues in a Planetary Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barsten, Kristina; Hurst, Victor, IV; Scheuring, Richard; Baumann, David K.; Johnson-Throop, Kathy

    2010-01-01

    Introduction: Analogue environments assist the NASA Human Research Program (HRP) in developing capabilities to mitigate high risk issues to crew health and performance for space exploration. The Habitat Demonstration Unit (HDU) is an analogue habitat used to assess space-related products for planetary missions. The Exploration Medical Capability (ExMC) element at the NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) was tasked with developing planetary-relevant medical scenarios to evaluate the concept of operations for mitigating medical issues in such an environment. Methods: Two medical scenarios were conducted within the simulated planetary habitat with the crew executing two space flight-relevant procedures: Eye Examination with a corneal injury and Skin Laceration. Remote guidance for the crew was provided by a flight surgeon (FS) stationed at a console outside of the habitat. Audio and video data were collected to capture the communication between the crew and the FS, as well as the movements of the crew executing the procedures. Questionnaire data regarding procedure content and remote guidance performance also were collected from the crew immediately after the sessions. Results: Preliminary review of the audio, video, and questionnaire data from the two scenarios conducted within the HDU indicate that remote guidance techniques from an FS on console can help crew members within a planetary habitat mitigate planetary-relevant medical issues. The content and format of the procedures were considered concise and intuitive, respectively. Discussion: Overall, the preliminary data from the evaluation suggest that use of remote guidance techniques by a FS can help HDU crew execute space exploration-relevant medical procedures within a habitat relevant to planetary missions, however further evaluations will be needed to implement this strategy into the complete concept of operations for conducting general space medicine within similar environments

  3. Geomorphology and Sustainable Subsistence Habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, A. C.; Kruger, L. E.

    2016-02-01

    Climatic, tectonic, and human-related impacts are changing the distribution of shoreline habitats and associated species used as food resources. There is a need to summarize current and future shoreline geomorphic - biotic relationships and better understand potential impacts to native customary and traditional gathering patterns. By strategically integrating Native knowledge and observations, we create an inclusive vulnerability assessment strategy resulting in a win-win opportunity for resource users and research scientists alike. We merged the NOAA ShoreZone database with results from over sixty student intern discussions in six southeast Alaska Native communities. Changes in shore width and unit length were derived using near shore bathymetry depths and available isostatic rebound, tectonic movement, and rates of sea level rise. Physical attributes including slope, substrate, and exposure were associated with presence and abundance of specific species. Student interns, selected by Tribes and Tribal associations, conducted resource-based discussions with community members to summarize species use, characteristics of species habitat, transportation used to access collection areas, and potential threats to habitats. Geomorphic trends and community observations were summarized to assess potential threats within a spatial context. Given current measured rates of uplift and sea level rise, 2.4 to 0 m of uplift along with 0.20 m of sea level rise is expected in the next 100 years. Coastlines of southeast Alaska will be subject to both drowning (primarily to the south) and emergence (primarily to the north). We predict decreases in estuary and sediment-dominated shoreline length and an increase in rocky habitats. These geomorphic changes, combined with resident's concerns, highlight six major interrelated coastal vulnerabilities including: (1) reduction of clam and clam habitat quantity and quality, (2) reduction in chiton quality and quantity, (3) harmful expansion of

  4. Ground beetle habitat templets and riverbank integrity

    OpenAIRE

    Van Looy, Kris; Vanacker, Stijn; Jochems, Hans; De Blust, Geert; Dufrêne, M

    2006-01-01

    The habitat templet approach was used in a scale-sensitive bioindicator assessment for the ecological integrity of riverbanks and for specific responses to river management. Ground beetle habitat templets were derived from a catchment scale sampling, integrating the overall variety of bank types. This coarse-filter analysis was integrated in the reach scale fine-filtering approaches of community responses to habitat integrity and river management impacts. Higher species diversity was associat...

  5. Environmental variation and habitat separation among small mammals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vickery, W.L.; Iverson, S.L.; Mihok, S.; Schwartz, B.

    1989-01-01

    Habitat use and population density of five species of forest small mammals were monitored by annual spring snap-trap censuses at Pinawa, Manitoba, over 14 years. Population sizes were positively correlated among species and showed no evidence of density-dependent effects. Species were habitat selectors. Habitat use by species did not vary among years. Habitat separation between the dominant species was not correlated with environmental variables or with population size. We suggest that habitat selection and positive covariance among species abundances are the principal factors characterizing the dynamics of this community

  6. Habitat and scale shape the demographic fate of the keystone sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus in Mediterranean macrophyte communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Prado

    Full Text Available Demographic processes exert different degrees of control as individuals grow, and in species that span several habitats and spatial scales, this can influence our ability to predict their population at a particular life-history stage given the previous life stage. In particular, when keystone species are involved, this relative coupling between demographic stages can have significant implications for the functioning of ecosystems. We examined benthic and pelagic abundances of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus in order to: 1 understand the main life-history bottlenecks by observing the degree of coupling between demographic stages; and 2 explore the processes driving these linkages. P. lividus is the dominant invertebrate herbivore in the Mediterranean Sea, and has been repeatedly observed to overgraze shallow beds of the seagrass Posidonia oceanica and rocky macroalgal communities. We used a hierarchical sampling design at different spatial scales (100 s, 10 s and <1 km and habitats (seagrass and rocky macroalgae to describe the spatial patterns in the abundance of different demographic stages (larvae, settlers, recruits and adults. Our results indicate that large-scale factors (potentially currents, nutrients, temperature, etc. determine larval availability and settlement in the pelagic stages of urchin life history. In rocky macroalgal habitats, benthic processes (like predation acting at large or medium scales drive adult abundances. In contrast, adult numbers in seagrass meadows are most likely influenced by factors like local migration (from adjoining rocky habitats functioning at much smaller scales. The complexity of spatial and habitat-dependent processes shaping urchin populations demands a multiplicity of approaches when addressing habitat conservation actions, yet such actions are currently mostly aimed at managing predation processes and fish numbers. We argue that a more holistic ecosystem management also needs to incorporate the

  7. Grazer diversity interacts with biogenic habitat heterogeneity to accelerate intertidal algal succession.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whalen, Matthew A; Aquilino, Kristin M; Stachowicz, John J

    2016-08-01

    Environmental heterogeneity contributes to coexistence by allowing species with different traits to persist when different species perform best at different times or places. This interaction between niche differences and environmental variability may also help explain relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, but few data are available to rigorously evaluate this hypothesis. We assessed how a biologically relevant aspect of environmental heterogeneity interacts with species diversity to determine ecosystem processes in a natural rocky intertidal community. We used field removals to factorially manipulate biogenic habitat heterogeneity (barnacles, bare rock, and plots that were 50/50 mixes of the two habitat types) and gastropod grazer species richness and then tracked algal community succession and recovery over the course of 1 yr. We found that herbivore diversity, substrate heterogeneity, and their interaction played unique roles in the peak abundance and timing of occurrence of different algal functional groups. Early successional microalgae were most heavily grazed in diverse herbivore assemblages and those with barnacles present, which was likely due to complementary feeding strategies among all three grazers. In contrast, late successional macroalgae were strongly influenced by the presence of a habitat generalist limpet. In this herbivore's absence, heterogeneous habitats (i.e., mixtures of bare rock and barnacles) experienced the greatest algal accumulation, which was partly a result of complementary habitat use by the remaining herbivores. The complex way habitat identity and heterogeneity altered grazer-algal interactions in our study suggests species' differences and environmental heterogeneity both separately and interactively contribute to the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functions. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  8. Habitat Re-Creation (Ecological Restoration) as a Strategy for Conserving Insect Communities in Highly Fragmented Landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuey, John A

    2013-12-05

    Because of their vast diversity, measured by both numbers of species as well as life history traits, insects defy comprehensive conservation planning. Thus, almost all insect conservation efforts target individual species. However, serious insect conservation requires goals that are set at the faunal level and conservation success requires strategies that conserve intact communities. This task is complicated in agricultural landscapes by high levels of habitat fragmentation and isolation. In many regions, once widespread insect communities are now functionally trapped on islands of ecosystem remnants and subject to a variety of stressors associated with isolation, small population sizes and artificial population fragmentation. In fragmented landscapes ecological restoration can be an effective strategy for reducing localized insect extinction rates, but insects are seldom included in restoration design criteria. It is possible to incorporate a few simple conservation criteria into restoration designs that enhance impacts to entire insect communities. Restoration can be used as a strategy to address fragmentation threats to isolated insect communities if insect communities are incorporated at the onset of restoration planning. Fully incorporating insect communities into restoration designs may increase the cost of restoration two- to three-fold, but the benefits to biodiversity conservation and the ecological services provided by intact insect communities justify the cost.

  9. Evaluation of two methods of estimating larval habitat productivity in western Kenya highlands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Munga Stephen

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria vector intervention and control programs require reliable and accurate information about vector abundance and their seasonal distribution. The availability of reliable information on the spatial and temporal productivity of larval vector habitats can improve targeting of larval control interventions and our understanding of local malaria transmission and epidemics. The main objective of this study was to evaluate two methods of estimating larval habitat productivity in the western Kenyan highlands, the aerial sampler and the emergence trap. Methods The study was conducted during the dry and rainy seasons in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Aerial samplers and emergence traps were set up for sixty days in each season in three habitat types: drainage ditches, natural swamps, and abandoned goldmines. Aerial samplers and emergence traps were set up in eleven places in each habitat type. The success of each in estimating habitat productivity was assessed according to method, habitat type, and season. The effect of other factors including algae cover, grass cover, habitat depth and width, and habitat water volume on species productivity was analysed using stepwise logistic regression Results Habitat productivity estimates obtained by the two sampling methods differed significantly for all species except for An. implexus. For for An. gambiae s.l. and An. funestus, aerial samplers performed better, 21.5 and 14.6 folds, than emergence trap respectively, while the emergence trap was shown to be more efficient for culicine species. Seasonality had a significant influence on the productivity of all species monitored. Dry season was most productive season. Overall, drainage ditches had significantly higher productivity in all seasons compared to other habitat types. Algae cover, debris, chlorophyll-a, and habitat depth and size had significant influence with respect to species. Conclusion These findings suggest that the aerial sampler is the

  10. Differential recolonization of Atlantic intertidal habitats after disturbance reveals potential bottom-up community regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petzold, Willy; Scrosati, Ricardo A

    2014-01-01

    In the spring of 2014, abundant sea ice that drifted out of the Gulf of St. Lawrence caused extensive disturbance in rocky intertidal habitats on the northern Atlantic coast of mainland Nova Scotia, Canada. To monitor recovery of intertidal communities, we surveyed two wave-exposed locations in the early summer of 2014. Barnacle recruitment and the abundance of predatory dogwhelks were low at one location (Tor Bay Provincial Park) but more than 20 times higher at the other location (Whitehead). Satellite data indicated that the abundance of coastal phytoplankton (the main food source for barnacle larvae) was consistently higher at Whitehead just before the barnacle recruitment season, when barnacle larvae were in the water column. These observations suggest bottom-up forcing of intertidal communities. The underlying mechanisms and their intensity along the NW Atlantic coast could be investigated through studies done at local and regional scales.

  11. Habitat filtering of bacterioplankton communities above polymetallic nodule fields and sediments in the Clarion-Clipperton zone of the Pacific Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindh, Markus V; Maillot, Brianne M; Smith, Craig R; Church, Matthew J

    2018-04-01

    Deep-sea mining of commercially valuable polymetallic nodule fields will generate a seabed sediment plume into the water column. Yet, the response of bacterioplankton communities, critical in regulating energy and matter fluxes in marine ecosystems, to such disturbances is unknown. Metacommunity theory, traditionally used in general ecology for macroorganisms, offers mechanistic understanding on the relative role of spatial differences compared with local environmental conditions (habitat filtering) for community assembly. We examined bacterioplankton metacommunities using 16S rRNA amplicons from the Clarion-Clipperton Zone (CCZ) in the eastern Pacific Ocean and in global ocean transect samples to determine sensitivity of these assemblages to environmental perturbations. Habitat filtering was the main assembly mechanism of bacterioplankton community composition in the epi- and mesopelagic waters of the CCZ and the Tara Oceans transect. Bathy- and abyssopelagic bacterioplankton assemblages were mainly assembled by undetermined metacommunity types or neutral and dispersal-driven patch-dynamics for the CCZ and the Malaspina transect. Environmental disturbances may alter the structure of upper-ocean microbial assemblages, with potentially even more substantial, yet unknown, impact on deep-sea communities. Predicting such responses in bacterioplankton assemblage dynamics can improve our understanding of microbially-mediated regulation of ecosystem services in the abyssal seabed likely to be exploited by future deep-sea mining operations. © 2018 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Using small unmanned aerial vehicle for instream habitat evaluation and modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astegiano, Luca; Vezza, Paolo; Comoglio, Claudio; Lingua, Andrea; Spairani, Michele

    2015-04-01

    Recent advances in digital image collection and processing have led to the increased use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for river research and management. In this paper, we assess the capabilities of a small UAV to characterize physical habitat for fish in three river stretches of North-Western Italy. The main aim of the study was identifying the advantages and challenges of this technology for environmental river management, in the context of the increasing river exploitation for hydropower production. The UAV used to acquire overlapping images was a small quadcopter with a two different high-resolution (non-metric) cameras (Nikon J1™ and Go-Pro Hero 3 Black Edition™). The quadcopter was preprogrammed to fly set waypoints using a small tablet PC. With the acquired imagery, we constructed a 5-cm resolution orthomosaic image and a digital surface model (DSM). The two products were used to map the distribution of aquatic and riparian habitat features, i.e., wetted area, morphological unit distributions, bathymetry, water surface gradient, substrates and grain sizes, shelters and cover for fish. The study assessed the quality of collected data and used such information to identify key reach-scale metrics and important aspects of fluvial morphology and aquatic habitat. The potential and limitations of using UAV for physical habitat survey were evaluated and the collected data were used to initialize and run common habitat simulation tools (MesoHABSIM). Several advantages of using UAV-based imagery were found, including low cost procedures, high resolution and efficiency in data collection. However, some challenges were identified for bathymetry extraction (vegetation obstructions, white waters, turbidity) and grain size assessment (preprocessing of data and automatic object detection). The application domain and possible limitation for instream habitat mapping were defined and will be used as a reference for future studies. Ongoing activities include the

  13. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Metazoan community composition in tree hole aquatic habitats of Silent Valley National Park and New Amarambalam Reserve Forest of the Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K.A. Nishadh

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available In a study of the metazoan community composition in tree hole aquatic habitat of a tropical rainforest, Silent Valley National Park, and the adjacent moist deciduous forest, New Amarambalam Reserve Forest, of the Western Ghats, 28 different species were recorded from 150 tree hole aquatic habitats with an average of 3-5 species per tree hole. Most of the recorded organisms (96.8% belong to Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies, Heteroptera (bugs, Diptera (flies, Coleoptera (beetles and Trichoptera (caddisflies. The study reports the first record of toe-winged beetle larvae (Ptilodactylidae in a tree hole aquatic habitat. The most significant observation is the prolific occurrence of trichopteran larvae as the second most abundant taxa in tree holes of Silent Valley National Park, and this stands as the first comprehensive record of the entire order in the habitat studied. The study upholds the importance of less explored microhabitats in the Western Ghats region in terms of sustaining unique community composition in the most delicate and extreme habitat conditions. It also puts forward important ecological research questions on biodiversity ecosystem functionality which could impart important lessons for managing and conserving the diminishing tropical evergreen forests which are significant for these unique habitats.

  14. Community Psychology, Evaluation, and Social Critique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Robin Lin

    2015-01-01

    Community psychology blends psychological science, a community-level perspective on social issues, and a social justice orientation. Despite important difference between community psychology and program evaluation, program evaluation is a key component of many community psychologists' practice and holds a central place in my own. In this…

  15. Landscape responses of bats to habitat fragmentation in Atlantic forest of paraguay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorresen, P.M.; Willig, M.R.

    2004-01-01

    Understanding effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on populations or communities is critical to effective conservation and restoration. This is particularly important for bats because they provide vital services to ecosystems via pollination and seed dispersal, especially in tropical and subtropical habitats. Based on more than 1,000 h of survey during a 15-month period, we quantified species abundances and community structure of phyllostomid bats at 14 sites in a 3,000-km2 region of eastern Paraguay. Abundance was highest for Artibeus lituratus in deforested landscapes and for Chrotopterus auritus in forested habitats. In contrast, Artibeus fimbriatus, Carollia perspicillata, Glossophaga soricina, Platyrrhinus lineatus, Pygoderma bilabiatum, and Sturnira lilium attained highest abundance in moderately fragmented forest landscapes. Forest cover, patch size, and patch density frequently were associated with abundance of species. At the community level, species richness was highest in partly deforested landscapes, whereas evenness was greatest in forested habitat. In general, the highest diversity of bats occurred in landscapes comprising moderately fragmented forest habitat. This underscores the importance of remnant habitat patches to conservation strategies.

  16. Habitat features and distribution of Salamandra salamandra in underground springs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raoul Manenti

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Subterranean habitats are among the less known terrestrial habitats, but can reveal an unexpected biodiversity, and can play an underestimated role for amphibians. The fire salamander Salamandra salamandra is sometimes found in underground environments, but the factors affecting its distribution in subterranean spaces remain substantially unexplored. We repeatedly surveyed some hypogeous springs, such as draining galleries and “bottini” in NW Italy, in order to evaluate the relationship between environmental features and distribution of S. salamandra in these underground springs. We performed visual encounter surveys to assess the occurrence of larvae, juveniles or adults in springs. We also recorded four habitat variables: easy of access, isolation, macrobenthos richness and forest cover of the surrounding landscape. We used generalized linear models to evaluate the relationships between habitat features and occurrence of larvae. We observed larvae of S. salamandra in 13 out of 22 springs; their presence was associated to springs with high easy of access and with relatively rich macrobenthos communities. In underground springs, larval development apparently required longer time than in nearby epigeous streams. Nevertheless, S. salamandra can attain metamorphosis in this environment. The occurrence of S. salamandra in underground environments was not accidental, but repeated in the time and interesting from an ecological point of view, confirming the high plasticity of the species.

  17. Habitat and sex differences in physiological condition of breeding Southwestern Willow Flycatchers (Empidonax traillii extimus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owen, J.C.; Sogge, M.K.; Kern, M.D.

    2005-01-01

    The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus; here- after “flycatcher”) is a federally listed endangered species that breeds in densely vegetated riparian habitats dominated by native and exotic plants, including introduced monotypic saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima). Some workers have theorized that saltcedar is unsuitable habitat for the flycatcher, primarily because it generally supports a smaller and less diverse invertebrate community (the flycatcher's food base) than native habitats (e.g. Salix spp.). However, differences in insect communities between native and saltcedar habitats are not proof that saltcedar habitats are inferior. The only way to evaluate whether the habitats differ in dietary or energetic quality is to document actual food limitation or its manifestations. Measurements of an individual's body condition and metabolic state can serve as indicators of environmental stressors, such as food limitation and environmental extremes. We captured 130 flycatchers breeding in native and saltcedar habitats in Arizona and New Mexico and measured 12 variables of physiological condition. These variables included body mass, fat level, body condition index, hematocrit, plasma triglycerides, plasma free fatty acids and glycerol, plasma glucose and beta-hydroxybutyrate, plasma uric acid, total leukocyte count, and heterophil-to-lymphocyte ratio. We found substantial sex-based differences in the condition of male and female flycatchers. Ten of the 12 measures of physiological condition differed significantly between the sexes. In all cases where male and female condition differed (except mass), the differences suggest that males were in poorer condition than females. We found few habitat-based differences in flycatcher condition. Only 3 of the 12 physiological condition indices differed significantly between habitats. Our data show that, at least in some parts of the flycatcher's range, there is no evidence that flycatchers breeding in

  18. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Big Island - The McKenzie River, Technical Report 1998-2001.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sieglitz, Greg

    2001-03-01

    The Big Island site is located in the McKenzie River flood plain, containing remnant habitats of what was once more common in this area. A diverse array of flora and fauna, representing significant wildlife habitats, is present on the site. Stands of undisturbed forested wetlands, along with riparian shrub habitats and numerous streams and ponds, support a diversity of wildlife species, including neotropical migratory songbirds, raptors, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians (including two State-listed Sensitive Critical species). The project is located in eastern Springfield, Oregon (Figure 1). The project area encompasses 187 acres under several ownerships in Section 27 of Township 17S, Range 2W. Despite some invasion of non-native species, the site contains large areas of relatively undisturbed wildlife habitat. Over several site visits, a variety of wildlife and signs of wildlife were observed, including an active great blue heron rookery, red-Legged frog egg masses, signs of beaver, and a bald eagle, Wildlife habitat values resulting from the purchase of this site will contribute toward the goal of mitigating for habitat lost as outlined in the Bonneville Power Administration's (BPA) Mitigation and Enhancement Plan for the Willamette River Basin. Under this Plan, mitigation goals and objectives were developed as a result of the loss of wildlife habitat due to the construction of Federal hydroelectric facilities in the Willamette River Basin. Results of the Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) will be used to: (1) determine the current habitat status of the study area and habitat enhancement potential of the site consistent with wildlife mitigation goals and objectives; and (2) develop a management plan for the area.

  19. Building a community-based culture of evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janzen, Rich; Ochocka, Joanna; Turner, Leanne; Cook, Tabitha; Franklin, Michelle; Deichert, Debbie

    2017-12-01

    In this article we argue for a community-based approach as a means of promoting a culture of evaluation. We do this by linking two bodies of knowledge - the 70-year theoretical tradition of community-based research and the trans-discipline of program evaluation - that are seldom intersected within the evaluation capacity building literature. We use the three hallmarks of a community-based research approach (community-determined; equitable participation; action and change) as a conceptual lens to reflect on a case example of an evaluation capacity building program led by the Ontario Brian Institute. This program involved two community-based groups (Epilepsy Southwestern Ontarioand the South West Alzheimer Society Alliance) who were supported by evaluators from the Centre for Community Based Research to conduct their own internal evaluation. The article provides an overview of a community-based research approach and its link to evaluation. It then describes the featured evaluation capacity building initiative, including reflections by the participating organizations themselves. We end by discussing lessons learned and their implications for future evaluation capacity building. Our main argument is that organizations that strive towards a community-based approach to evaluation are well placed to build and sustain a culture of evaluation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Using expert opinion to evaluate a habitat effectiveness model for elk in western Oregon and Washington.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard S. Holthausen; Michael J. Wisdom; John Pierce; Daniel K. Edwards; Mary M. Rowland

    1994-01-01

    We used expert opinion to evaluate the predictive reliability of a habitat effectiveness model for elk in western Oregon and Washington. Twenty-five experts in elk ecology were asked to rate habitat quality for 16 example landscapes. Rankings and ratings of 21 experts were significantly correlated with model output. Expert opinion and model predictions differed for 4...

  1. Habitat structure and body size distributions: Cross-ecosystem comparison for taxa with determinate and indeterminate growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Kirsty L.; Allen, Craig R.; Barichievy, Chris; Nystrom, Magnus; Sundstrom, Shana M.; Graham, Nicholas A.J.

    2014-01-01

    Habitat structure across multiple spatial and temporal scales has been proposed as a key driver of body size distributions for associated communities. Thus, understanding the relationship between habitat and body size is fundamental to developing predictions regarding the influence of habitat change on animal communities. Much of the work assessing the relationship between habitat structure and body size distributions has focused on terrestrial taxa with determinate growth, and has primarily analysed discontinuities (gaps) in the distribution of species mean sizes (species size relationships or SSRs). The suitability of this approach for taxa with indeterminate growth has yet to be determined. We provide a cross-ecosystem comparison of bird (determinate growth) and fish (indeterminate growth) body mass distributions using four independent data sets. We evaluate three size distribution indices: SSRs, species size–density relationships (SSDRs) and individual size–density relationships (ISDRs), and two types of analysis: looking for either discontinuities or abundance patterns and multi-modality in the distributions. To assess the respective suitability of these three indices and two analytical approaches for understanding habitat–size relationships in different ecosystems, we compare their ability to differentiate bird or fish communities found within contrasting habitat conditions. All three indices of body size distribution are useful for examining the relationship between cross-scale patterns of habitat structure and size for species with determinate growth, such as birds. In contrast, for species with indeterminate growth such as fish, the relationship between habitat structure and body size may be masked when using mean summary metrics, and thus individual-level data (ISDRs) are more useful. Furthermore, ISDRs, which have traditionally been used to study aquatic systems, present a potentially useful common currency for comparing body size distributions

  2. Exploration of the Canyon-Incised Continental Margin of the Northeastern United States Reveals Dynamic Habitats and Diverse Communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea M Quattrini

    Full Text Available The continental margin off the northeastern United States (NEUS contains numerous, topographically complex features that increase habitat heterogeneity across the region. However, the majority of these rugged features have never been surveyed, particularly using direct observations. During summer 2013, 31 Remotely-Operated Vehicle (ROV dives were conducted from 494 to 3271 m depth across a variety of seafloor features to document communities and to infer geological processes that produced such features. The ROV surveyed six broad-scale habitat features, consisting of shelf-breaching canyons, slope-sourced canyons, inter-canyon areas, open-slope/landslide-scar areas, hydrocarbon seeps, and Mytilus Seamount. Four previously unknown chemosynthetic communities dominated by Bathymodiolus mussels were documented. Seafloor methane hydrate was observed at two seep sites. Multivariate analyses indicated that depth and broad-scale habitat significantly influenced megafaunal coral (58 taxa, demersal fish (69 taxa, and decapod crustacean (34 taxa assemblages. Species richness of fishes and crustaceans significantly declined with depth, while there was no relationship between coral richness and depth. Turnover in assemblage structure occurred on the middle to lower slope at the approximate boundaries of water masses found previously in the region. Coral species richness was also an important variable explaining variation in fish and crustacean assemblages. Coral diversity may serve as an indicator of habitat suitability and variation in available niche diversity for these taxonomic groups. Our surveys added 24 putative coral species and three fishes to the known regional fauna, including the black coral Telopathes magna, the octocoral Metallogorgia melanotrichos and the fishes Gaidropsarus argentatus, Guttigadus latifrons, and Lepidion guentheri. Marine litter was observed on 81% of the dives, with at least 12 coral colonies entangled in debris. While

  3. Evaluating methods to establish habitat suitability criteria: A case study in the upper Delaware River Basin, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galbraith, Heather S.; Blakeslee, Carrie J.; Cole, Jeffrey C.; Talbert, Colin; Maloney, Kelly O.

    2016-01-01

    Defining habitat suitability criteria (HSC) of aquatic biota can be a key component to environmental flow science. HSC can be developed through numerous methods; however, few studies have evaluated the consistency of HSC developed by different methodologies. We directly compared HSC for depth and velocity developed by the Delphi method (expert opinion) and by two primary literature meta-analyses (literature-derived range and interquartile range) to assess whether these independent methods produce analogous criteria for multiple species (rainbow trout, brown trout, American shad, and shallow fast guild) and life stages. We further evaluated how these two independently developed HSC affect calculations of habitat availability under three alternative reservoir management scenarios in the upper Delaware River at a mesohabitat (main channel, stream margins, and flood plain), reach, and basin scale. In general, literature-derived HSC fell within the range of the Delphi HSC, with highest congruence for velocity habitat. Habitat area predicted using the Delphi HSC fell between the habitat area predicted using two literature-derived HSC, both at the basin and the site scale. Predicted habitat increased in shallow regions (stream margins and flood plain) using literature-derived HSC while Delphi-derived HSC predicted increased channel habitat. HSC generally favoured the same reservoir management scenario; however, no favoured reservoir management scenario was the most common outcome when applying the literature range HSC. The differences found in this study lend insight into how different methodologies can shape HSC and their consequences for predicted habitat and water management decisions. Published 2016. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  4. Exploring tree-habitat associations in a Chinese subtropical forest plot using a molecular phylogeny generated from DNA barcode loci.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nancai Pei

    Full Text Available Elucidating the ecological mechanisms underlying community assembly in subtropical forests remains a central challenge for ecologists. The assembly of species into communities can be due to interspecific differences in habitat associations, and there is increasing evidence that these associations may have an underlying phylogenetic structure in contemporary terrestrial communities. In other words, by examining the degree to which closely related species prefer similar habitats and the degree to which they co-occur, ecologists are able to infer the mechanisms underlying community assembly. Here we implement this approach in a diverse subtropical tree community in China using a long-term forest dynamics plot and a molecular phylogeny generated from three DNA barcode loci. We find that there is phylogenetic signal in plant-habitat associations (i.e. closely related species tend to prefer similar habitats and that patterns of co-occurrence within habitats are typically non-random with respect to phylogeny. In particular, we found phylogenetic clustering in valley and low-slope habitats in this forest, indicating a filtering of lineages plays a dominant role in structuring communities in these habitats and we found evidence of phylogenetic overdispersion in high-slope, ridge-top and high-gully habitats, indicating that distantly related species tended to co-occur in these high elevation habitats and that lineage filtering is less important in structuring these communities. Thus we infer that non-neutral niche-based processes acting upon evolutionarily conserved habitat preferences explain the assembly of local scale communities in the forest studied.

  5. Hydrologic and water-quality rehabilitation of environments for suitable fish habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, C. S.; Yang, S. T.; Xiang, H.; Liu, C. M.; Zhang, H. T.; Yang, Z. L.; Zhang, Y.; Sun, Y.; Mitrovic, S. M.; Yu, Q.; Lim, R. P.

    2015-11-01

    Aquatic ecological rehabilitation is attracting increasing public and research attention, but without knowledge of the responses of aquatic species to their habitats the success of habitat restoration is uncertain. Thus efficient study of species response to habitat, through which to prioritize the habitat factors influencing aquatic ecosystems, is highly important. However many current models have too high requirement for assemblage information and have great bias in results due to consideration of only the species' attribute of presence/absence, abundance or biomass, thus hindering the wider utility of these models. This paper, using fish as a case, presents a framework for identification of high-priority habitat factors based on the responses of aquatic species to their habitats, using presence/absence, abundance and biomass data. This framework consists of four newly developed sub-models aiming to determine weightings for the evaluation of species' contributions to their communities, to quantitatively calculate an integrated habitat suitability index for multi-species based on habitat factors, to assess the suitable probability of habitat factors and to assess the rehabilitation priority of habitat factors. The framework closely links hydrologic, physical and chemical habitat factors to fish assemblage attributes drawn from monitoring datasets on hydrology, water quality and fish assemblages at a total of 144 sites, where 5084 fish were sampled and tested. Breakpoint identification techniques based on curvature in cumulated dominance along with a newly developed weighting calculation model based on theory of mass systems were used to help identify the dominant fish, based on which the presence and abundance of multiple fish were normalized to estimate the integrated habitat suitability index along gradients of various factors, based on their variation with principal habitat factors. Then, the appropriate probability of every principal habitat factor was

  6. An evaluation of rapid methods for monitoring vegetation characteristics of wetland bird habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavernia, Brian G.; Lyons, James E.; Loges, Brian W.; Wilson, Andrew; Collazo, Jaime A.; Runge, Michael C.

    2016-01-01

    Wetland managers benefit from monitoring data of sufficient precision and accuracy to assess wildlife habitat conditions and to evaluate and learn from past management decisions. For large-scale monitoring programs focused on waterbirds (waterfowl, wading birds, secretive marsh birds, and shorebirds), precision and accuracy of habitat measurements must be balanced with fiscal and logistic constraints. We evaluated a set of protocols for rapid, visual estimates of key waterbird habitat characteristics made from the wetland perimeter against estimates from (1) plots sampled within wetlands, and (2) cover maps made from aerial photographs. Estimated percent cover of annuals and perennials using a perimeter-based protocol fell within 10 percent of plot-based estimates, and percent cover estimates for seven vegetation height classes were within 20 % of plot-based estimates. Perimeter-based estimates of total emergent vegetation cover did not differ significantly from cover map estimates. Post-hoc analyses revealed evidence for observer effects in estimates of annual and perennial covers and vegetation height. Median time required to complete perimeter-based methods was less than 7 percent of the time needed for intensive plot-based methods. Our results show that rapid, perimeter-based assessments, which increase sample size and efficiency, provide vegetation estimates comparable to more intensive methods.

  7. Evaluating the provenance of fine sediment in degraded Freshwater Pearl Mussel habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, Will; Haley, Steve; Goddard, Rupert; Stone, Peter; Broadhead, Kat

    2015-04-01

    Freshwater Pearl Mussels (FWPM), Margaritifera margaritifera, are among the most critically threatened freshwater bivalves worldwide. In addition to their important roles in particle processing, nutrient release, and sediment mixing, they also serve as an ideal target species for evaluation of aquatic ecosystem functioning especially in the context of their symbiotic relationship with Atlantic salmon Salmo salar and brown or sea trout Salmo trutta. Poor water quality, particularly eutrophication, and siltation are considered major contributory factors in the decline of the species hence management of diffuse water pollution from agriculture (DWPA) is a key priority in catchments that host FWPM habitats. Against this background, this study adopted a combined monitoring, surveying and sediment fingerprinting approach to determine the principal sources of fine sediment impacting FWPM habitats in the River Clun, a Special area of Conservation (SAC) for FWPMs in central western UK. Potential sediment production hotspot areas in the ca 200 km2 catchment area upstream of FWPM habitats were initially evaluated using the SCIMAP risk mapping tool. Suspended sediment monitoring was undertaken on the main stem channel where FWPM habitats are located and wet weather catchment walkover surveys undertaken along the upstream river and stream network. Within this monitoring framework, sediment fingerprinting was undertaken at two levels. The first level aimed to link primary catchment sources (cultivated and uncultivated soil, channel bank erosion, and material transported via roads and tracks) to suspended sediment output from each main tributary upstream of the FWPM beds. The second level linked silt in the FWMP beds to the main tributaries, as integrated source end-members, with the inclusion of main channel bank erosion, a notable feature of walkover surveys as an additional source. Geochemical fingerprints, determined by XRF spectroscopy, were dominated by conservative mineral

  8. Competition and habitat selection in a forest-floor small mammal fauna

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dueser, R D [Univ. of Virginia, Charlottesville; Hallett, J G

    1980-01-01

    In a study of habitat exploitation in a forest-floor small mammal community, we have collected habitat and population data for Peromyscus leucopus, Ochrotomys nuttalli, and Tamias striatus. Using multiple regression analysis, researchers estimate the effects of habitat selection and competition on the local distributions of these species during three seasons. Each of the partial regression coefficients relating the density of an independent species to the density of the dependent species is negative. This result indicates that competition is pervasive among these species. Competitive ability and habitat selectivity both increase in the order Peromyscus-Tamias-Ochrotomys. Peromyscus is a poorly competitive habitat generalist, Ochrotomys is a strongly competitive habitat specialist, and Tamias is intermediate in both respects. The competitive hierarchy is stable between seasons. These results both confirm the conclusions reached in previous studies of this small mammal community and suggest the design of experiments to further clarify the mode and consequences of interaction between these species.

  9. Encroachment of oriental bittersweet into Pitcher’s thistle habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leicht-Young, Stacey A.; Pavlovic, Noel B.

    2012-01-01

    Common invasive species and rare endemic species can grow and interact at the ecotone between forested and non-forested dune habitats. To investigate these interactions, a comparison of the proximity and community associates of a sympatric invasive (Celastrus orbiculatus; oriental bittersweet) and native (C. scandens; American bittersweet) liana species to federally threatened Cirsium pitcheri (Pitcher's thistle) in the dunes habitats of Lake Michigan was conducted. Overall, the density of the invasive liana species was significantly greater in proximity to C. pitcheri than the native species. On the basis of composition, the three focal species occurred in both foredune and blowout habitats. The plant communities associated with the three focal species overlapped in ordination space, but there were significant differences in composition. The ability of C. orbiculatus to rapidly grow and change the ecological dynamics of invasion sites adds an additional threat to the successional habitats of C. pitcheri.

  10. Columbia River wildlife mitigation habitat evaluation procedures report: Scotch Creek Wildlife Area, Berg Brothers, and Douglas County pygmy rabbit projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashley, P.R.; Ratassepp, J.; Berger, M.; Judd, S.L.

    1997-01-01

    This Habitat Evaluation Procedure study was conducted to determine baseline habitat units (HUs) on the Scotch Creek, Mineral Hill, Pogue Mountain, Chesaw and Tunk Valley Habitat Areas (collectively known as the Scotch Creek Wildlife Area) in Okanogan County, Sagebrush Flat and the Dormaler property in Douglas County, and the Berg Brothers ranch located in Okanogan County within the Colville Reservation. A HEP team comprised of individuals from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (Appendix A) conducted baseline habitat surveys using the following HEP evaluation species: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginiana), mink (Mustela vison), Canada goose (Branta canadensis), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), Lewis woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis), and Yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia). Results of the HEP analysis are listed below. General ratings (poor, marginal, fair, etc.,) are described in Appendix B. Mule deer habitat was marginal lacking diversity and quantify of suitable browse species. Sharp-tailed grouse habitat was marginal lacking residual nesting cover and suitable winter habitat Pygmy rabbit habitat was in fair condition except for the Dormaier property which was rated marginal due to excessive shrub canopy closure at some sites. This report is an analysis of baseline habitat conditions on mitigation project lands and provides estimated habitat units for mitigation crediting purposes. In addition, information from this document could be used by wildlife habitat managers to develop management strategies for specific project sites

  11. Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report / Scotch Creek Wildlife Area, Berg Brothers, and Douglas County Pygmy Rabbit Projects.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    1997-01-01

    This Habitat Evaluation Procedure study was conducted to determine baseline habitat units (HUs) on the Scotch Creek, Mineral Hill, Pogue Mountain, Chesaw and Tunk Valley Habitat Areas (collectively known as the Scotch Creek Wildlife Area) in Okanogan County, Sagebrush Flat and the Dormaler property in Douglas County, and the Berg Brothers ranch located in Okanogan County within the Colville Reservation. A HEP team comprised of individuals from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (Appendix A) conducted baseline habitat surveys using the following HEP evaluation species: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginiana), mink (Mustela vison), Canada goose (Branta canadensis), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), Lewis woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis), and Yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia). Results of the HEP analysis are listed below. General ratings (poor, marginal, fair, etc.,) are described in Appendix B. Mule deer habitat was marginal lacking diversity and quantify of suitable browse species. Sharp-tailed grouse habitat was marginal lacking residual nesting cover and suitable winter habitat Pygmy rabbit habitat was in fair condition except for the Dormaier property which was rated marginal due to excessive shrub canopy closure at some sites. This report is an analysis of baseline habitat conditions on mitigation project lands and provides estimated habitat units for mitigation crediting purposes. In addition, information from this document could be used by wildlife habitat managers to develop management strategies for specific project sites.

  12. The Community Psychology Evaluation Nexus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheldon, Jeffrey A.; Wolfe, Susan M.

    2015-01-01

    In 2012, the American Evaluation Association (AEA) added community psychology (CP) to its roster of topical interests groups (TIG). One of the highlights of the CP TIG program at the 2012 AEA Conference and the genesis of this "American Journal of Evaluation" Forum was a panel of accomplished community psychologists and evaluation…

  13. Scale-dependency of macroinvertebrate communities: responses to contaminated sediments within run-of-river dams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colas, Fanny; Archaimbault, Virginie; Devin, Simon

    2011-03-01

    Due to their nutrient recycling function and their importance in food-webs, macroinvertebrates are essential for the functioning of aquatic ecosystems. These organisms also constitute an important component of biodiversity. Sediment evaluation and monitoring is an essential aspect of ecosystem monitoring since sediments represent an important component of aquatic habitats and are also a potential source of contamination. In this study, we focused on macroinvertebrate communities within run-of-river dams, that are prime areas for sediment and pollutant accumulation. Little is known about littoral macroinvertebrate communities within run-of-river dam or their response to sediment levels and pollution. We therefore aimed to evaluate the following aspects: the functional and structural composition of macroinvertebrate communities in run-of-river dams; the impact of pollutant accumulation on such communities, and the most efficient scales and tools needed for the biomonitoring of contaminated sediments in such environments. Two run-of-river dams located in the French alpine area were selected and three spatial scales were examined: transversal (banks and channel), transversal x longitudinal (banks/channel x tail/middle/dam) and patch scale (erosion, sedimentation and vegetation habitats). At the patch scale, we noted that the heterogeneity of littoral habitats provided many available niches that allow for the development of diversified macroinvertebrate communities. This implies highly variable responses to contamination. Once combined on a global 'banks' spatial scale, littoral habitats can highlight the effects of toxic disturbances. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Colonization Habitat Controls Biomass, Composition, and Metabolic Activity of Attached Microbial Communities in the Columbia River Hyporheic Corridor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stern, Noah; Ginder-Vogel, Matthew; Stegen, James C.; Arntzen, Evan; Kennedy, David W.; Larget, Bret R.; Roden, Eric E.; Kostka, Joel E.

    2017-06-09

    Hydrologic exchange plays a critical role in biogeochemical cycling within the hyporheic zone (the interface between river water and groundwater) of riverine ecosystems. Such exchange may set limits on the rates of microbial metabolism and impose deterministic selection on microbial communities that adapt to dynamically changing dissolved organic carbon (DOC) sources. This study examined the response of attached microbial communities (in situcolonized sand packs) from groundwater, hyporheic, and riverbed habitats within the Columbia River hyporheic corridor to “cross-feeding” with either groundwater, river water, or DOC-free artificial fluids. Our working hypothesis was that deterministic selection duringin situcolonization would dictate the response to cross-feeding, with communities displaying maximal biomass and respiration when supplied with their native fluid source. In contrast to expectations, the major observation was that the riverbed colonized sand had much higher biomass and respiratory activity, as well as a distinct community structure, compared with those of the hyporheic and groundwater colonized sands. 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing revealed a much higher proportion of certain heterotrophic taxa as well as significant numbers of eukaryotic algal chloroplasts in the riverbed colonized sand. Significant quantities of DOC were released from riverbed sediment and colonized sand, and separate experiments showed that the released DOC stimulated respiration in the groundwater and piezometer colonized sand. These results suggest that the accumulation and degradation of labile particulate organic carbon (POC) within the riverbed are likely to release DOC, which may enter the hyporheic corridor during hydrologic exchange, thereby stimulating microbial activity and imposing deterministic selective pressure on the microbial community composition.

    IMPORTANCEThe influence of river water

  15. An evaluation of the use of ERTS-1 satellite imagery for grizzly bear habitat analysis. [Montana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varney, J. R.; Craighead, J. J.; Sumner, J. S.

    1974-01-01

    Improved classification and mapping of grizzly habitat will permit better estimates of population density and distribution, and allow accurate evaluation of the potential effects of changes in land use, hunting regulation, and management policies on existing populations. Methods of identifying favorable habitat from ERTS-1 multispectral scanner imagery were investigated and described. This technique could reduce the time and effort required to classify large wilderness areas in the Western United States.

  16. Indigenous community health and climate change: integrating biophysical and social science indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donatuto, Jamie; Grossman, Eric E.; Konovsky, John; Grossman, Sarah; Campbell, Larry W.

    2014-01-01

    This article describes a pilot study evaluating the sensitivity of Indigenous community health to climate change impacts on Salish Sea shorelines (Washington State, United States and British Columbia, Canada). Current climate change assessments omit key community health concerns, which are vital to successful adaptation plans, particularly for Indigenous communities. Descriptive scaling techniques, employed in facilitated workshops with two Indigenous communities, tested the efficacy of ranking six key indicators of community health in relation to projected impacts to shellfish habitat and shoreline archaeological sites stemming from changes in the biophysical environment. Findings demonstrate that: when shellfish habitat and archaeological resources are impacted, so is Indigenous community health; not all community health indicators are equally impacted; and, the community health indicators of highest concern are not necessarily the same indicators most likely to be impacted. Based on the findings and feedback from community participants, exploratory trials were successful; Indigenous-specific health indicators may be useful to Indigenous communities who are assessing climate change sensitivities and creating adaptation plans.

  17. Research on Livable Community Evaluation Based on GIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Zhangcai; Wu, Yang; Jin, Zhanghaonan; Zhang, Xu

    2018-01-01

    Community is the basic unit of the city. Research on livable community could provide a bottom-up research path for the realization of livable city. Livability is the total factor affecting the quality of community life. In this paper, livable community evaluation indexes are evaluated based on GIS and fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method. Then the sum-index and sub-index of community livability are both calculated. And community livable evaluation index system is constructed based on the platform of GIS. This study provides theoretical support for the construction and management of livable communities, so as to guide the development and optimization of city.

  18. Valuing Our Communities: Ethical Considerations for Economic Evaluation of Community-Based Prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowley, Max; Jones, Damon

    2017-12-01

    Restricted public budgets and increasing efforts to link the impact of community interventions to public savings have increased the use of economic evaluation. While this type of evaluation can be important for program planning, it also raises important ethical issues about how we value the time of local stakeholders who support community interventions. In particular, researchers navigate issues of scientific accuracy, institutional inequality, and research utility in their pursuit of even basic cost estimates. We provide an example of how we confronted these issues when estimating the costs of a large-scale community-based intervention. Principles for valuing community members' time and conducting economic evaluations of community programs are discussed. © Society for Community Research and Action 2017.

  19. Salmon River Habitat Enhancement, 1989 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rowe, Mike

    1989-04-01

    This project was funded by the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). The annual report contains three individual subproject papers detailing tribal fisheries work completed during the summer and fall of 1989. Subproject 1 contains summaries of evaluation/monitoring efforts associated with the Bear Valley Creek, Idaho enhancement project. Subproject 2 contains an evaluation of the Yankee Fork of the Salmon River habitat enhancement project. This report has been sub-divided into two parts: Part 1; stream evaluation and Part 2; pond series evaluation. Subproject 3 concerns the East Fork of the Salmon River, Idaho. This report summarizes the evaluation of the project to date including the 1989 pre-construction evaluation conducted within the East Fork drainage. Dredge mining has degraded spawning and rearing habitat for chinook salmon and steelhead trout in the Yankee Fork drainage of the Salmon River and in Bear Valley Creek. Mining, agricultural, and grazing practices degraded habitat in the East Fork of the Salmon River. Biological monitoring of the success of habitat enhancement for Bear Valley Creek and Yankee Fork are presented in this report. Physical and biological inventories prior to habitat enhancement in East Fork were also conducted. Four series of off-channel ponds of the Yankee Fork are shown to provide effective rearing habitat for chinook salmon. 45 refs., 49 figs., 24 tabs.

  20. The Relationship between Habitat Loss and Fragmentation during Urbanization: An Empirical Evaluation from 16 World Cities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhifeng Liu

    Full Text Available Urbanization results in habitat loss and habitat fragmentation concurrently, both influencing biodiversity and ecological processes. To evaluate these impacts, it is important to understand the relationships between habitat loss and habitat fragmentation per se (HLHF during urbanization. The objectives of this study were two-fold: 1 to quantify the different forms of the HLHF relationship during urbanization using multiple landscape metrics, and 2 to test the validity of the HLHF relations reported in the literature. Our analysis was based on a long-term urbanization dataset (1800-2000 of 16 large cities from around the world. Habitat area was represented as the percentage of non-built-up area in the landscape, while habitat fragmentation was measured using several landscape metrics. Our results show that the relationship between habitat loss and habitat fragmentation during urbanization is commonly monotonic-linear, exponential, or logarithmic, indicating that the degree of habitat fragmentation per se increases with habitat loss in general. We compared our results with 14 hypothesized HLHF relationships based on simulated landscapes found in the literature, and found that four of them were consistent with those of urbanization, whereas the other ten were not. Also, we identified six new HLHF relationships when fragmentation was measured by total core area, normalized total core area, patch density, edge density and landscape shape index, respectively. In addition, our study demonstrated that the "space-for-time" approach, frequently used in ecology and geography, generated specious HLHF relationships, suggesting that this approach is largely inappropriate for analyses of urban landscapes that are highly heterogeneous in space and unusually contingent in dynamics. Our results show both generalities and idiosyncrasies of the HLHF relationship, providing new insights for assessing ecological effects of urbanization.

  1. Habitat or matrix: which is more relevant to predict road-kill of vertebrates?

    OpenAIRE

    Bueno,C.; Sousa,C. O. M.; Freitas,S. R.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract We believe that in tropics we need a community approach to evaluate road impacts on wildlife, and thus, suggest mitigation measures for groups of species instead a focal-species approach. Understanding which landscape characteristics indicate road-kill events may also provide models that can be applied in other regions. We intend to evaluate if habitat or matrix is more relevant to predict road-kill events for a group of species. Our hypothesis is: more permeable matrix is the most r...

  2. Shared Epizoic Taxa and Differences in Diatom Community Structure Between Green Turtles (Chelonia mydas) from Distant Habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majewska, Roksana; de Vijver, Bart Van; Nasrolahi, Ali; Ehsanpour, Maryam; Afkhami, Majid; Bolaños, Federico; Iamunno, Franco; Santoro, Mario; De Stefano, Mario

    2017-11-01

    The first reports of diatoms growing on marine mammals date back to the early 1900s. However, only recently has direct evidence been provided for similar associations between diatoms and sea turtles. We present a comparison of diatom communities inhabiting carapaces of green turtles Chelonia mydas sampled at two remote sites located within the Indian (Iran) and Atlantic (Costa Rica) Ocean basins. Diatom observations and counts were carried out using scanning electron microscopy. Techniques involving critical point drying enabled observations of diatoms and other microepibionts still attached to sea turtle carapace and revealed specific aspects of the epizoic community structure. Species-poor, well-developed diatom communities were found on all examined sea turtles. Significant differences between the two host sea turtle populations were observed in terms of diatom abundance and their community structure (including growth form structure). A total of 12 and 22 diatom taxa were found from sea turtles in Iran and Costa Rica, respectively, and eight of these species belonging to Amphora, Chelonicola, Cocconeis, Navicula, Nitzschia and Poulinea genera were observed in samples from both locations. Potential mechanisms of diatom dispersal and the influence of the external environment, sea turtle behaviour, its life stage, and foraging and breeding habitats, as well as epibiotic bacterial flora on epizoic communities, are discussed.

  3. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume I, Oregon, Supplement C, White River Habitat Inventory, 1983 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heller, David

    1984-04-01

    More than 130 miles of stream fish habitat was inventoried and evaluated on the Mt. Hood National Forest during the first year of this multi-year project. First year tasks included field inventory and evaluation of habitat conditions on the White River and tributary streams thought to have the highest potential for supporting anadromous fish populations. All streams inventoried were located on the Mt. Hood National Forest. The surveyed area appears to contain most of the high quality anadromous fish habitat in the drainage. Habitat conditions appear suitable for steelhead, coho, and chinook salmon, and possibly sockeye. One hundred and twenty-four miles of potential anadromous fish habitat were identifed in the survey. Currently, 32 miles of this habitat would be readily accessible to anadromous fish. An additional 72 miles of habitat could be accessed with only minor passage improvement work. About 20 miles of habitat, however, will require major investment to provide fish passage. Three large lakes (Boulder, 14 acres; Badger, 45 acres; Clear, 550 acres) appear to be well-suited for rearing anadromous fish, although passage enhancement would be needed before self-sustaining runs could be established in any of the lakes.

  4. Crop type influences edge effects on the reproduction of songbirds in sagebrush habitat near agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elly C. Knight

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Extensive fragmentation of the sagebrush shrubsteppe of western North America could be contributing to observed population declines of songbirds in sagebrush habitat. We examined whether habitat fragmentation impacts the reproduction of songbirds in sagebrush edge habitat near agriculture, and if potential impacts vary depending on the adjacent crop type. Specifically, we evaluated whether nest abundance and nest survival varied between orchard edge habitat, vineyard edge habitat, and interior habitat. We then examined whether the local nest predator community and vegetation could explain the differences detected. We detected fewer nests in edge than interior habitat. Nest abundance per songbird was also lower in edge than interior habitat, although only adjacent to vineyards. Nest predation was more frequent in orchard edge habitat than vineyard edge or interior habitat. Predators identified with nest cameras were primarily snakes, however, reduced nest survival in orchard edge habitat was not explained by differences in the abundance of snakes or any other predator species identified. Information theoretic analysis of daily survival rates showed that greater study plot shrub cover and lower grass height at nests were partially responsible for the lower rate of predation-specific daily nest survival rate (PDSR observed in orchard edge habitat, but additional factors are likely important. Results of this study suggest that different crop types have different edge effects on songbirds nesting in sagebrush shrubsteppe, and that these reproductive edge effects may contribute to observed declines of these species. Habitat managers should avoid the creation of new orchard-sagebrush habitat edges to avoid further impacts on already declining songbird populations.

  5. CisLunar Habitat Internal Architecture Design Criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, R.; Kennedy, K.; Howard, R.; Whitmore, M.; Martin, C.; Garate, J.

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: In preparation for human exploration to Mars, there is a need to define the development and test program that will validate deep space operations and systems. In that context, a Proving Grounds CisLunar habitat spacecraft is being defined as the next step towards this goal. This spacecraft will operate differently from the ISS or other spacecraft in human history. The performance envelope of this spacecraft (mass, volume, power, specifications, etc.) is being defined by the Future Capabilities Study Team. This team has recognized the need for a human-centered approach for the internal architecture of this spacecraft and has commissioned a CisLunar Phase-1 Habitat Internal Architecture Study Team to develop a NASA reference configuration, providing the Agency with a "smart buyer" approach for future acquisition. THE CISLUNAR HABITAT INTERNAL ARCHITECTURE STUDY: Overall, the CisLunar Habitat Internal Architecture study will address the most significant questions and risks in the current CisLunar architecture, habitation, and operations concept development. This effort is achieved through definition of design criteria, evaluation criteria and process, design of the CisLunar Habitat Phase-1 internal architecture, and the development and fabrication of internal architecture concepts combined with rigorous and methodical Human-in-the-Loop (HITL) evaluations and testing of the conceptual innovations in a controlled test environment. The vision of the CisLunar Habitat Internal Architecture Study is to design, build, and test a CisLunar Phase-1 Habitat Internal Architecture that will be used for habitation (e.g. habitability and human factors) evaluations. The evaluations will mature CisLunar habitat evaluation tools, guidelines, and standards, and will interface with other projects such as the Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Program integrated Power, Avionics, Software (iPAS), and Logistics for integrated human-in-the-loop testing. The mission of the Cis

  6. Deep-Sea Soft Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  7. Deep-Sea Stony Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  8. Physical habitat classification and instream flow modeling to determine habitat availability during low-flow periods, North Fork Shenandoah River, Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krstolic, Jennifer L.; Hayes, Donald C.; Ruhl, Peter M.

    2006-01-01

    Increasing development and increasing water withdrawals for public, industrial, and agricultural water supply threaten to reduce streamflows in the Shenandoah River basin in Virginia. Water managers need more information to balance human water-supply needs with the daily streamflows necessary for maintaining the aquatic ecosystems. To meet the need for comprehensive information on hydrology, water supply, and instream-flow requirements of the Shenandoah River basin, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Northern Shenandoah Valley Regional Commission conducted a cooperative investigation of habitat availability during low-flow periods on the North Fork Shenandoah River. Historic streamflow data and empirical data on physical habitat, river hydraulics, fish community structure, and recreation were used to develop a physical habitat simulation model. Hydraulic measurements were made during low, medium, and high flows in six reaches at a total of 36 transects that included riffles, runs, and pools, and that had a variety of substrates and cover types. Habitat suitability criteria for fish were developed from detailed fish-community sampling and microhabitat observations. Fish were grouped into four guilds of species and life stages with similar habitat requirements. Simulated habitat was considered in the context of seasonal flow regimes to show the availability of flows that sustain suitable habitat during months when precipitation and streamflow are scarce. The North Fork Shenandoah River basin was divided into three management sections for analysis purposes: the upper section, middle section, and lower section. The months of July, August, and September were chosen to represent a low-flow period in the basin with low mean monthly flows, low precipitation, high temperatures, and high water withdrawals. Exceedance flows calculated from the combined data from these three months describe low-flow periods on the North Fork Shenandoah River. Long-term records from three

  9. Sex- and habitat-specific movement of an omnivorous semi-terrestrial crab controls habitat connectivity and subsidies: a multi-parameter approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hübner, Lena; Pennings, Steven C; Zimmer, Martin

    2015-08-01

    Distinct habitats are often linked through fluxes of matter and migration of organisms. In particular, intertidal ecotones are prone to being influenced from both the marine and the terrestrial realms, but whether or not small-scale migration for feeding, sheltering or reproducing is detectable may depend on the parameter studied. Within the ecotone of an upper saltmarsh in the United States, we investigated the sex-specific movement of the semi-terrestrial crab Armases cinereum using an approach of determining multiple measures of across-ecotone migration. To this end, we determined food preference, digestive abilities (enzyme activities), bacterial hindgut communities (genetic fingerprint), and the trophic position of Armases and potential food sources (stable isotopes) of males versus females of different sub-habitats, namely high saltmarsh and coastal forest. Daily observations showed that Armases moved frequently between high-intertidal (saltmarsh) and terrestrial (forest) habitats. Males were encountered more often in the forest habitat, whilst gravid females tended to be more abundant in the marsh habitat but moved more frequently. Food preference was driven by both sex and habitat. The needlerush Juncus was preferred over three other high-marsh detrital food sources, and the periwinkle Littoraria was the preferred prey of male (but not female) crabs from the forest habitats; both male and female crabs from marsh habitat preferred the fiddler crab Uca over three other prey items. In the field, the major food sources were clearly vegetal, but males have a higher trophic position than females. In contrast to food preference, isotope data excluded Uca and Littoraria as major food sources, except for males from the forest, and suggested that Armases consumes a mix of C4 and C3 plants along with animal prey. Digestive enzyme activities differed significantly between sexes and habitats and were higher in females and in marsh crabs. The bacterial hindgut community

  10. Predicting the effects of proposed Mississippi River diversions on oyster habitat quality; application of an oyster habitat suitability index model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soniat, Thomas M.; Conzelmann, Craig P.; Byrd, Jason D.; Roszell, Dustin P.; Bridevaux, Joshua L.; Suir, Kevin J.; Colley, Susan B.

    2013-01-01

    In an attempt to decelerate the rate of coastal erosion and wetland loss, and protect human communities, the state of Louisiana developed its Comprehensive Master Plan for a Sustainable Coast. The master plan proposes a combination of restoration efforts including shoreline protection, marsh creation, sediment diversions, and ridge, barrier island, and hydrological restoration. Coastal restoration projects, particularly the large-scale diversions of fresh water from the Mississippi River, needed to supply sediment to an eroding coast potentially impact oyster populations and oyster habitat. An oyster habitat suitability index model is presented that evaluates the effects of a proposed sediment and freshwater diversion into Lower Breton Sound. Voluminous freshwater, needed to suspend and broadly distribute river sediment, will push optimal salinities for oysters seaward and beyond many of the existing reefs. Implementation and operation of the Lower Breton Sound diversion structure as proposed would render about 6,173 ha of hard bottom immediately east of the Mississippi River unsuitable for the sustained cultivation of oysters. If historical harvests are to be maintained in this region, a massive and unprecedented effort to relocate private leases and restore oyster bottoms would be required. Habitat suitability index model results indicate that the appropriate location for such efforts are to the east and north of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet.

  11. Characterization of measurement errors using structure-from-motion and photogrammetry to measure marine habitat structural complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryson, Mitch; Ferrari, Renata; Figueira, Will; Pizarro, Oscar; Madin, Josh; Williams, Stefan; Byrne, Maria

    2017-08-01

    Habitat structural complexity is one of the most important factors in determining the makeup of biological communities. Recent advances in structure-from-motion and photogrammetry have resulted in a proliferation of 3D digital representations of habitats from which structural complexity can be measured. Little attention has been paid to quantifying the measurement errors associated with these techniques, including the variability of results under different surveying and environmental conditions. Such errors have the potential to confound studies that compare habitat complexity over space and time. This study evaluated the accuracy, precision, and bias in measurements of marine habitat structural complexity derived from structure-from-motion and photogrammetric measurements using repeated surveys of artificial reefs (with known structure) as well as natural coral reefs. We quantified measurement errors as a function of survey image coverage, actual surface rugosity, and the morphological community composition of the habitat-forming organisms (reef corals). Our results indicated that measurements could be biased by up to 7.5% of the total observed ranges of structural complexity based on the environmental conditions present during any particular survey. Positive relationships were found between measurement errors and actual complexity, and the strength of these relationships was increased when coral morphology and abundance were also used as predictors. The numerous advantages of structure-from-motion and photogrammetry techniques for quantifying and investigating marine habitats will mean that they are likely to replace traditional measurement techniques (e.g., chain-and-tape). To this end, our results have important implications for data collection and the interpretation of measurements when examining changes in habitat complexity using structure-from-motion and photogrammetry.

  12. Floral and nesting resources, habitat structure, and fire influence bee distribution across an open-forest gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grundel, R.; Jean, R.P.; Frohnapple, K.J.; Glowacki, G.A.; Scott, P.E.; Pavlovic, N.B.

    2010-01-01

    Given bees' central effect on vegetation communities, it is important to understand how and why bee distributions vary across ecological gradients. We examined how plant community composition, plant diversity, nesting suitability, canopy cover, land use, and fire history affected bee distribution across an open-forest gradient in northwest Indiana, USA, a gradient similar to the historic Midwest United States landscape mosaic. When considered with the other predictors, plant community composition was not a significant predictor of bee community composition. Bee abundance was negatively related to canopy cover and positively to recent fire frequency, bee richness was positively related to plant richness and abundance of potential nesting resources, and bee community composition was significantly related to plant richness, soil characteristics potentially related to nesting suitability, and canopy cover. Thus, bee abundance was predicted by a different set of environmental characteristics than was bee species richness, and bee community composition was predicted, in large part, by a combination of the significant predictors of bee abundance and richness. Differences in bee community composition along the woody vegetation gradient were correlated with relative abundance of oligolectic, or diet specialist, bees. Because oligoleges were rarer than diet generalists and were associated with open habitats, their populations may be especially affected by degradation of open habitats. More habitat-specialist bees were documented for open and forest/scrub habitats than for savanna/woodland habitats, consistent with bees responding to habitats of intermediate woody vegetation density, such as savannas, as ecotones rather than as distinct habitat types. Similarity of bee community composition, similarity of bee abundance, and similarity of bee richness between sites were not significantly related to proximity of sites to each other. Nestedness analysis indicated that species

  13. The fate of threatened coastal dune habitats in Italy under climate change scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prisco, Irene; Carboni, Marta; Acosta, Alicia T R

    2013-01-01

    Coastal dunes worldwide harbor threatened habitats characterized by high diversity in terms of plant communities. In Italy, recent assessments have highlighted the insufficient state of conservation of these habitats as defined by the EU Habitats Directive. The effects of predicted climate change could have dramatic consequences for coastal environments in the near future. An assessment of the efficacy of protection measures under climate change is thus a priority. Here, we have developed environmental envelope models for the most widespread dune habitats in Italy, following two complementary approaches: an "indirect" plant-species-based one and a simple "direct" one. We analyzed how habitats distribution will be altered under the effects of two climate change scenarios and evaluated if the current Italian network of protected areas will be effective in the future after distribution shifts. While modeling dune habitats with the "direct" approach was unsatisfactory, "indirect" models had a good predictive performance, highlighting the importance of using species' responses to climate change for modeling these habitats. The results showed that habitats closer to the sea may even increase their geographical distribution in the near future. The transition dune habitat is projected to remain stable, although mobile and fixed dune habitats are projected to lose most of their actual geographical distribution, the latter being more sensitive to climate change effects. Gap analysis highlighted that the habitats' distribution is currently adequately covered by protected areas, achieving the conservation target. However, according to predictions, protection level for mobile and fixed dune habitats is predicted to drop drastically under the climate change scenarios which we examined. Our results provide useful insights for setting management priorities and better addressing conservation efforts to preserve these threatened habitats in future.

  14. Effects of habitat management on different feeding guilds of herbivorous insects in cacao agroforestry systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novais, Samuel M A; Macedo-Reis, Luiz E; DaRocha, Wesley D; Neves, Frederico S

    2016-06-01

    Human pressure on natural habitats increases the importance of agroforests for biodiversity conservation. The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of cacao traditional cultivation system (CTCS) on the conservation of the herbivorous insect community when compared with a monodominant rubber agroforest, a type of agricultural system for cacao cultivation. The insects were sampled in three habitats in Southeastern Bahia, Brazil: native forests, CTCS and rubber agroforests. In each habitat, 18 plots of 10 m2 were established, and the structural measures were collected and herbivorous insects were sampled with a Malaise/window trap. The diversity of folivorous decreased with the simplification of vegetation structure, but species composition was similar among habitats. In addition to a decrease in the availability of resources in monodominant rubber agroforests, the latex present in these systems have limited the occurrence of species that cannot circumvent latex toxicity. The diversity of sap-sucking insects was similar among habitats, but species composition was similar only in the CTCS and native forest, and it was different in the rubber agroforest. We observed turnover and a higher frequency of individuals of the family Psyllidae in the rubber agroforest. The biology and behavior of Psyllids and absence of natural enemies enable their diversity to increase when they are adapted to a new host. We observed a shift in the composition of xylophagous insects in the rubber agroforest compared to that in other habitats. Moreover, this agroforest has low species richness, but high individual abundance. Latex extraction is likely an important additional source of volatile compounds discharged into the environment, and it increases the attraction and recruitment of coleoborers to these sites. We concluded that CTCS has an herbivorous insect community with a structure similar to the community found in native forests of the region, and they present a more

  15. Habitat structure mediates biodiversity effects on ecosystem properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godbold, J A; Bulling, M T; Solan, M

    2011-08-22

    Much of what we know about the role of biodiversity in mediating ecosystem processes and function stems from manipulative experiments, which have largely been performed in isolated, homogeneous environments that do not incorporate habitat structure or allow natural community dynamics to develop. Here, we use a range of habitat configurations in a model marine benthic system to investigate the effects of species composition, resource heterogeneity and patch connectivity on ecosystem properties at both the patch (bioturbation intensity) and multi-patch (nutrient concentration) scale. We show that allowing fauna to move and preferentially select patches alters local species composition and density distributions, which has negative effects on ecosystem processes (bioturbation intensity) at the patch scale, but overall positive effects on ecosystem functioning (nutrient concentration) at the multi-patch scale. Our findings provide important evidence that community dynamics alter in response to localized resource heterogeneity and that these small-scale variations in habitat structure influence species contributions to ecosystem properties at larger scales. We conclude that habitat complexity forms an important buffer against disturbance and that contemporary estimates of the level of biodiversity required for maintaining future multi-functional systems may need to be revised.

  16. Epibenthic communities of sedimentary habitats in a NE Atlantic deep seamount (Galicia Bank)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, A.; Cartes, J. E.; Papiol, V.; Punzón, A.; García-Alegre, A.; Arronte, J. C.; Ríos, P.; Lourido, A.; Frutos, I.; Blanco, M.

    2017-12-01

    Galicia Bank is a deep seamount included as Site of Community Importance (SCI) in the Spanish Natura 2000 Network proposal. In the present study, epibenthic assemblages of sedimentary habitats have been described, together with the main environmental factor explaining species and communities distribution. Five epibenthic assemblages have been identified. Depth was the main factor explaining assemblage distribution, and the role of sediment type, water masses, and coral framework presence is also discussed. Three assemblages are located in the summit: the shallowest one (730-770 m), in the boundary between Eastern North Atlantic Central Water (ENACW) and Mediterranean Overflow Water (MOW) water masses is typified by ophiuroids and characterized by medium sands. The second assemblage (770-800 m) typified by the bivalve Limopsis minuta and the solitary coral Flabellum chunii correspond with medium sands and MOW core; and the third typified by the presence of cold-water coral communities dominated by Lophelia pertusa and Madrepora oculata, also on the MOW influence. In the border of the summit, in the bank break, an assemblage located in the range 1000-1200 m is dominated by the urchin Cidaris cidaris and the sponge Thenea muricata. In the flat flanks around the bank, the deepest assemblage (1400-1800 m) is dominated by the holothurian Benthogone rosea, in a depth range dominated by the Labrador water (LSW) and in fine sands with highest contents of organic matter. Most of species appeared in a depth range smaller than 25% of total depth range sampled and in bank.

  17. Use of functional traits to assess changes in stream fish assemblages across a habitat gradient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariela Domiciano Ribeiro

    Full Text Available Abstract Functional traits are important for understanding the links between species occurrence and environmental conditions. Identifying these links makes it possible to predict changes in species composition within communities under specific environmental conditions. We used functional traits related to habitat use and trophic ecology in order to assess the changes in fish community composition between streams with varying habitat structure. The relationship between the species traits and habitat characteristics was analyzed using an RLQ ordination analysis. Although species were widely distributed in habitats with different structures, physical conditions did favor some species based on their functional characteristics. Eight functional traits were found to be associated with stream habitat structure, allowing us to identify traits that may predict the susceptibility of fish species to physical habitat degradation.

  18. Evaluation of Four Supervised Learning Methods for Benthic Habitat Mapping Using Backscatter from Multi-Beam Sonar

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacquomo Monk

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available An understanding of the distribution and extent of marine habitats is essential for the implementation of ecosystem-based management strategies. Historically this had been difficult in marine environments until the advancement of acoustic sensors. This study demonstrates the applicability of supervised learning techniques for benthic habitat characterization using angular backscatter response data. With the advancement of multibeam echo-sounder (MBES technology, full coverage datasets of physical structure over vast regions of the seafloor are now achievable. Supervised learning methods typically applied to terrestrial remote sensing provide a cost-effective approach for habitat characterization in marine systems. However the comparison of the relative performance of different classifiers using acoustic data is limited. Characterization of acoustic backscatter data from MBES using four different supervised learning methods to generate benthic habitat maps is presented. Maximum Likelihood Classifier (MLC, Quick, Unbiased, Efficient Statistical Tree (QUEST, Random Forest (RF and Support Vector Machine (SVM were evaluated to classify angular backscatter response into habitat classes using training data acquired from underwater video observations. Results for biota classifications indicated that SVM and RF produced the highest accuracies, followed by QUEST and MLC, respectively. The most important backscatter data were from the moderate incidence angles between 30° and 50°. This study presents initial results for understanding how acoustic backscatter from MBES can be optimized for the characterization of marine benthic biological habitats.

  19. Combined effects of local habitat, anthropogenic stress, and dispersal on stream ecosystems: a mesocosm experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turunen, Jarno; Louhi, Pauliina; Mykrä, Heikki; Aroviita, Jukka; Putkonen, Emmi; Huusko, Ari; Muotka, Timo

    2018-06-06

    The effects of anthropogenic stressors on community structure and ecosystem functioning can be strongly influenced by local habitat structure and dispersal from source communities. Catchment land uses increase the input of fine sediments into stream channels, clogging the interstitial spaces of benthic habitats. Aquatic macrophytes enhance habitat heterogeneity and mediate important ecosystem functions, being thus a key component of habitat structure in many streams. Therefore, the recovery of macrophytes following in-stream habitat modification may be prerequisite for successful stream restoration. Restoration success is also affected by dispersal of organisms from the source community, with potentially strongest responses in relatively isolated headwater sites that receive limited amount of dispersing individuals. We used a factorial design in a set of stream mesocosms to study the independent and combined effects of an anthropogenic stressor (sand sedimentation), local habitat (macrophytes, i.e. moss transplants) and enhanced dispersal (two levels: high vs. low) on organic matter retention, algal accrual rate, leaf decomposition and macroinvertebrate community structure. Overall, all responses were simple additive effects with no interactions between treatments. Sand reduced algal accumulation, total invertebrate density and density of a few individual taxa. Mosses reduced algal accrual rate and algae-grazing invertebrates, but enhanced organic matter retention and detritus- and filter-feeders. Mosses also reduced macroinvertebrate diversity by increasing the dominance by a few taxa. Mosses also reduced leaf-mass loss, possibly because the organic matter retained by mosses provided an additional food source for leaf-shredding invertebrates and thus reduced shredder aggregation into leaf packs. The effect of mosses on macroinvertebrate communities and ecosystem functioning was distinct irrespective of the level of dispersal, suggesting strong environmental

  20. Habitat-specific effects of climate change on a low-mobility Arctic spider species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bowden, Joseph James; Hansen, Rikke Reisner; Olsen, Kent

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Terrestrial ecosystems are heterogeneous habitat mosaics of varying vegetation types that are differentially affected by climate change. Arctic plant communities, for example, are changing faster in moist habitats than in dry habitats and abiotic changes like snowmelt vary locally among...... was significantly related to the timing of snowmelt and differed significantly between the sexes and habitats with the spiders in the mesic habitat showing a stronger temporal response to later snowmelt. Juvenile/ female ratios also differed significantly between habitats; as did the overall abundance...

  1. Habitat selection responses of parents to offspring predation risk: An experimental test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontaine, J.J.; Martin, T.E.

    2006-01-01

    The ability of nest predation to influence habitat settlement decisions in birds is widely debated, despite its importance in limiting fitness. Here, we experimentally manipulated nest predation risk across a landscape and asked the question, do migratory birds assess and respond to variation in nest predation risk when choosing breeding habitats? We examined habitat preference by quantifying the density and settlement date of eight species of migratory passerines breeding in areas with and without intact nest predator communities. We found consistently more individuals nesting in areas with reduced nest predation than in areas with intact predator assemblages, although predation risk had no influence on settlement or breeding phenology. Additionally, those individuals occupying safer nesting habitats exhibited increased singing activity. These findings support a causal relationship between habitat choice and nest predation risk and suggest the importance of nest predation risk in shaping avian community structure and breeding activity. ?? 2006 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

  2. Observations of the Hawaiian Mesopelagic Boundary Community in Daytime and Nighttime Habitats Using Estimated Backscatter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Comfort CM

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The Hawaiian mesopelagic boundary community is a slope-associated assemblage of micronekton that undergoes diel migrations along the slopes of the islands, residing at greater depths during the day and moving upslope to forage in shallower water at night. The timing of these migrations may be influenced by environmental factors such as moon phase or ambient light. To investigate the movements of this community, we examined echo intensity data from acoustic Doppler current profilers (ADCPs deployed at shallow and deep sites on the southern slope of Oahu, Hawaii. Diel changes in echo intensity (and therefore in estimated backscatter were observed and determined to be caused, at least in part, by the horizontal migration of the mesopelagic boundary community. Generalized additive modeling (GAM was used to assess the impact of environmental factors on the migration timing. Sunset time and lunar illumination were found to be significant factors. Movement speeds of the mesopelagic boundary community were estimated at 1.25–1.99 km h-1 (35–55 cm s-1. The location at which the migrations were observed is the future site of a seawater air conditioning system, which will cause artificial upwelling at our shallow observation site and may cause animal entrainment at the seawater intake near our deep water observation site. This study is the first to observe the diel migration of the mesopelagic boundary community on southern Oahu in both deep and shallow parts of the habitat, and it is also the first to examine migration trends over long time scales, which allows a better assessment of the effects of seasons and lunar illumination on micronekton migrations. Understanding the driving mechanisms of mesopelagic boundary community behavior will increase our ability to assess and manage coastal ecosystems in the face of increasing anthropogenic impacts.

  3. Type 'A' and 'B' recovery revisited: The role of field-edge habitats for Collembola and macroarthropod community recovery after insecticide treatment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frampton, Geoff K.; Gould, Philip J.L.; Brink, Paul J. van den; Hendy, Eleanor

    2007-01-01

    Previous work has identified two patterns of arthropod recovery after insecticide applications to arable crops: dispersal-mediated recolonisation from untreated areas (Type A) and recolonisation within treated areas assisted by reduced predation (Type B). In this study, connectivity between field-edge habitats was manipulated using barriers to investigate whether a crop edge and adjacent hedgerow influence recolonisation of an insecticide-treated crop by surface-active Collembola and other arthropods. Collembola recovery patterns differed among closely-related taxa. Epigeic collembolan and macroarthropod communities were more diverse and abundant, and rates of artificial prey predation were higher, in sprayed crop areas connected to both hedgerow and unsprayed crop edge than in sprayed areas connected to the unsprayed edge alone. These findings indicate that effectiveness of unsprayed crop edges as sources of field recolonisation may depend on adjoining field margin habitats. An assumption in risk assessment that unsprayed crop edges assist population recovery within treated areas is not supported. - Collembola recolonisation differs among species; effectiveness of unsprayed crop edges as sources of arthropod recolonisation may depend on adjacent habitat

  4. Strong links between metal contamination, habitat modification and estuarine larval fish distributions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKinley, Andrew C., E-mail: andrew.mckinley@hotmail.com [Evolution and Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales 2052 (Australia); Miskiewicz, Anthony [Environment and Recreation, Wollongong City Council, 41 Burelli Street, Wollongong, New South Wales 2500 (Australia); Taylor, Matthew D.; Johnston, Emma L. [Evolution and Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales 2052 (Australia)

    2011-06-15

    Changes to larval fish assemblages may have far reaching ecological impacts. Correlations between habitat modification, contamination and marine larval fish communities have rarely been assessed in situ. We investigated links between the large-scale distribution of stressors and larval fish assemblages in estuarine environments. Larval fish communities were sampled using a benthic sled within the inner and outer zones of three heavily modified and three relatively unmodified estuaries. Larval abundances were significantly greater in modified estuaries, and there were trends towards greater diversity in these systems. Differences in larval community composition were strongly related to sediment metal levels and reduced seagrass cover. The differences observed were driven by two abundant species, Paedogobius kimurai and Ambassis jacksoniensis, which occurred in large numbers almost exclusively in highly contaminated and pristine locations respectively. These findings suggest that contamination and habitat alteration manifest in substantial differences in the composition of estuarine larval fish assemblages. - Highlights: > We examine contamination/habitat modification impacts on larval fish. > Larvae communities differ between modified/unmodified estuaries. > Larvae are more abundant/diverse in modified areas. > Trends are strongly related to sediment metals/seagrass cover. > Larval impacts have wider ecological importance. - We describe strong links between sediment metals contamination, habitat modification and substantial differences in the composition of the estuarine larval fish assemblage.

  5. Mapping Habitats and Developing Baselines in Offshore Marine Reserves with Little Prior Knowledge: A Critical Evaluation of a New Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma Lawrence

    Full Text Available The recently declared Australian Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR Network covers a total of 3.1 million km2 of continental shelf, slope, and abyssal habitat. Managing and conserving the biodiversity values within this network requires knowledge of the physical and biological assets that lie within its boundaries. Unfortunately very little is known about the habitats and biological assemblages of the continental shelf within the network, where diversity is richest and anthropogenic pressures are greatest. Effective management of the CMR estate into the future requires this knowledge gap to be filled efficiently and quantitatively. The challenge is particularly great for the shelf as multibeam echosounder (MBES mapping, a key tool for identifying and quantifying habitat distribution, is time consuming in shallow depths, so full coverage mapping of the CMR shelf assets is unrealistic in the medium-term. Here we report on the results of a study undertaken in the Flinders Commonwealth Marine Reserve (southeast Australia designed to test the benefits of two approaches to characterising shelf habitats: (i MBES mapping of a continuous (~30 km2 area selected on the basis of its potential to include a range of seabed habitats that are potentially representative of the wider area, versus; (ii a novel approach that uses targeted mapping of a greater number of smaller, but spatially balanced, locations using a Generalized Random Tessellation Stratified sample design. We present the first quantitative estimates of habitat type and sessile biological communities on the shelf of the Flinders reserve, the former based on three MBES analysis techniques. We contrast the quality of information that both survey approaches offer in combination with the three MBES analysis methods. The GRTS approach enables design based estimates of habitat types and sessile communities and also identifies potential biodiversity hotspots in the northwest corner of the reserve's IUCN

  6. Mapping Habitats and Developing Baselines in Offshore Marine Reserves with Little Prior Knowledge: A Critical Evaluation of a New Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Emma; Hayes, Keith R; Lucieer, Vanessa L; Nichol, Scott L; Dambacher, Jeffrey M; Hill, Nicole A; Barrett, Neville; Kool, Johnathan; Siwabessy, Justy

    2015-01-01

    The recently declared Australian Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR) Network covers a total of 3.1 million km2 of continental shelf, slope, and abyssal habitat. Managing and conserving the biodiversity values within this network requires knowledge of the physical and biological assets that lie within its boundaries. Unfortunately very little is known about the habitats and biological assemblages of the continental shelf within the network, where diversity is richest and anthropogenic pressures are greatest. Effective management of the CMR estate into the future requires this knowledge gap to be filled efficiently and quantitatively. The challenge is particularly great for the shelf as multibeam echosounder (MBES) mapping, a key tool for identifying and quantifying habitat distribution, is time consuming in shallow depths, so full coverage mapping of the CMR shelf assets is unrealistic in the medium-term. Here we report on the results of a study undertaken in the Flinders Commonwealth Marine Reserve (southeast Australia) designed to test the benefits of two approaches to characterising shelf habitats: (i) MBES mapping of a continuous (~30 km2) area selected on the basis of its potential to include a range of seabed habitats that are potentially representative of the wider area, versus; (ii) a novel approach that uses targeted mapping of a greater number of smaller, but spatially balanced, locations using a Generalized Random Tessellation Stratified sample design. We present the first quantitative estimates of habitat type and sessile biological communities on the shelf of the Flinders reserve, the former based on three MBES analysis techniques. We contrast the quality of information that both survey approaches offer in combination with the three MBES analysis methods. The GRTS approach enables design based estimates of habitat types and sessile communities and also identifies potential biodiversity hotspots in the northwest corner of the reserve's IUCN zone IV, and in

  7. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Red-winged blackbird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Short, Henry L.

    1985-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) model for the red-winged blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus L.). The model consolidates habitat use information into a framework appropriate for field application, and is scaled to produce an index between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) to 1.0 (optimum habitat). HSI models are designed to be used with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  8. Komunitas serangga pada tanaman orok-Orok (Crotalaria striata di berbagai habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasmiandy Hamid

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available To study insect community at orok-orok plantation (Crotalaria striata from different habitat, we observed insects that interacted with Crotalaria plantation. There were four habitat type that used in this research, habitat open area and others were agroforestry habitat. We counted about nine ordo from insect that interacted with Crotalaria plant. More than 70% member of ordo, include to Hymenoptera, specially Formicidae. Not all function member of the ordo that known, but some of them are pollinator, parasitoid, predator and herbivore.

  9. A method for evaluating land conservation value by means of a bird community analysis; Valutazione dell`integrita` ecologica del territorio mediante l`analisi di comunita` di uccelli

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fornasari, Lorenzo; De Carli, Elisabetta; Bottoni, Luciana; Massa, Renato [Milan, Univ. (Italy). Dipt. di Scenze dell`Ambiente e del Territorio

    1997-06-01

    The present planetary crisis of species extinction is mainly due to habitat loss. Therefore, for its mitigation, it is imperative to identify areas of major conservation concern. To this end, they analysed bird community data, by selecting samples randomly over a large study area. They subjected the samples collected to a cluster analysis to identify `a posteriori` bird communities to be indexed together with their habitats associated. They identified 15 bird community types and were able to characterise each of them by a community conservation index (CCI) taking into account three different components of rarity: habitat selectivity, geographical distribution and abundance. A cluster of four communities was associated with lowland farmland and woodland; another cluster of five was found at higher average altitudes and degree of urbanization; a third one of six showed a montane distribution. This third cluster showed much higher CCI in comparison with the first two. As a conservation tool, CCI points out the events in which selectivity is high and geographical distribution / abundance is restricted. In the study area (the whole of Lombardy) they found that the communities showing high CCI values are mostly associated with habitats of marginal value for human use.

  10. 78 FR 41549 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Designation of Critical Habitat for the Northern...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-10

    ... on the existing community ecology that affects the status of these gartersnakes within their range... scientific community, industry, or any other interested parties concerning this proposed rule. We... modification of critical habitat. Under the first prong of the Act's definition of critical habitat, areas...

  11. Distribution, habitat and adaptability of the genus Tapirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, Manolo J; Medici, Emília Patrícia; Naranjo, Eduardo J; Novarino, Wilson; Leonardo, Raquel S

    2012-12-01

    In this manuscript, as a starting point, the ancient and current distribution of the genus Tapirus are summarized, from its origins, apparently in Europe, to current ranges. Subsequently, original and current tapir habitats are described, as well as changes in ancient habitats. As the manuscript goes on, we examine the ways in which tapir species interact with their habitats and the main aspects of habitat use, spatial ecology and adaptability. Having reviewed the historic and current distribution of tapirs, as well as their use and selection of habitats, we introduce the concept of adaptability, considering that some of the tapir physiological characteristics and behavioral strategies can reduce the negative impact of habitat alteration and climate change. Finally, we provide recommendations for future research priorities. The conservation community is still missing important pieces of information for the effective conservation of tapirs and their remaining habitats in Central and South America and Southeast Asia. Reconstructing how tapir species reached their current distribution ranges, interpreting how they interact with their habitats and gathering information regarding the strategies they use to cope with habitat changes will increase our understanding about these animals and contribute to the development of conservation strategies. © 2012 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd, ISZS and IOZ/CAS.

  12. L-Reactor Habitat Mitigation Study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-02-01

    The L-Reactor Fish and Wildlife Resource Mitigation Study was conducted to quantify the effects on habitat of the L-Reactor restart and to identify the appropriate mitigation for these impacts. The completed project evaluated in this study includes construction of a 1000 acre reactor cooling reservoir formed by damming Steel Creek. Habitat impacts identified include a loss of approximately 3,700 average annual habitat units. This report presents a mitigation plan, Plan A, to offset these habitat losses. Plan A will offset losses for all species studied, except whitetailed deer. The South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources Department strongly recommends creation of a game management area to provide realistic mitigation for loss of deer habitats. 10 refs., 5 figs., 3 tabs

  13. Carnivore distributions across chaparral habitats exposed to wildfire and rural housing in southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuette, P.A.; Diffendorfer, J.E.; Deutschman, D.H.; Tremor, S.; Spencer, W.

    2014-01-01

    Chaparral and coastal sage scrub habitats in southern California support biologically diverse plant and animal communities. However, native plant and animal species within these shrubland systems are increasingly exposed to human-caused wildfires and an expansion of the human–wildland interface. Few data exist to evaluate the effects of fire and anthropogenic pressures on plant and animal communities found in these environments. This is particularly true for carnivore communities. To address this knowledge gap, we collected detection–non-detection data with motion-sensor cameras and track plots to measure carnivore occupancy patterns following a large, human-caused wildfire (1134 km2) in eastern San Diego County, California, USA, in 2003. Our focal species set included coyote (Canis latrans), gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), bobcat (Lynx rufus) and striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis). We evaluated the influence on species occupancies of the burned environment (burn edge, burn interior and unburned areas), proximity of rural homes, distance to riparian area and elevation. Gray fox occupancies were the highest overall, followed by striped skunk, coyote and bobcat. The three species considered as habitat and foraging generalists (gray fox, coyote, striped skunk) were common in all conditions. Occupancy patterns were consistent through time for all species except coyote, whose occupancies increased through time. In addition, environmental and anthropogenic variables had weak effects on all four species, and these responses were species-specific. Our results helped to describe a carnivore community exposed to frequent fire and rural human residences, and provide baseline data to inform fire management policy and wildlife management strategies in similar fire-prone ecosystems.

  14. Evaluating the Effect of Green Infrastructure Stormwater Best Management Practices on New England Stream Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    The U.S. EPA is evaluating the effectiveness of green infrastructure (GI) stormwater best management practices (BMPs) on stream habitat at the small watershed (< HUC12) scale in New England. Predictive models for thermal regime and substrate characteristics (substrate size, % em...

  15. Assessing Community Informatics: A Review of Methodological Approaches for Evaluating Community Networks and Community Technology Centers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neil, Dara

    2002-01-01

    Analyzes the emerging community informatics evaluation literature to develop an understanding of the indicators used to gauge project impacts in community networks and community technology centers. The study finds that community networks and community technology center assessments fall into five key areas: strong democracy; social capital;…

  16. Community photosynthesis of aquatic macrophytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Binzer, T.; Sand-Jensen, K.; Middelboe, A. L.

    2006-01-01

    We compared 190 photosynthesis-irradiance (P-E) experiments with single- and multispecies communities of macroalgae and vascular plants from freshwater and marine habitats. We found a typical hyperbolic P-E relation in all communities and no sign of photosaturation or photoinhibition of photosynt......We compared 190 photosynthesis-irradiance (P-E) experiments with single- and multispecies communities of macroalgae and vascular plants from freshwater and marine habitats. We found a typical hyperbolic P-E relation in all communities and no sign of photosaturation or photoinhibition...

  17. Snowshoe hare multi-level habitat use in a fire-adapted ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gigliotti, Laura C.; Jones, Benjamin C.; Lovallo, Matthew J.; Diefenbach, Duane R.

    2018-01-01

    Prescribed burning has the potential to improve habitat for species that depend on pyric ecosystems or other early successional vegetation types. For species that occupy diverse plant communities over the extent of their range, response to disturbances such as fire might vary based on post-disturbance vegetation dynamics among plant communities. Although responses of snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus) to fire have been studied in conifer-dominated forests in northern parts of the species’ range, there is a lack of information on snowshoe hare habitat use in fire-dependent communities in southern parts of their range. We used global positioning system (GPS) and very high frequency (VHF) radio-collars to monitor the habitat use of 32 snowshoe hares in a scrub-oak (Quercus ilicifolia)-pitch pine (Pinus rigida) barrens complex in northeastern Pennsylvania where prescribed fire has been used for habitat restoration. The area contained stands that underwent prescribed burning 1–6 years prior to our study. Also, we investigated fine-scale determinants of habitat use within stands. We found that regardless of season, hares did not select for areas that had been burned within 6 years prior. Hares primarily used stands of older scrub oak, conifer, or hardwoods, which contained dense understory vegetation and canopy cover. Hare habitat use also was positively associated with stand edges. Our results suggest that hares do not respond to prescribed burning of scrub oak in the short-term. In addition, by focusing on structural determinants of habitat use, rather than broad-scale characteristics such as stand type, management strategies for snowshoe hares can be adapted over the extent of their range despite the multitude of different land cover types across which the species occurs. 

  18. Longitudinal structure in temperate stream fish communities: evaluating conceptual models with temporal data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, James H.; Hitt, Nathaniel P.

    2010-01-01

    Five conceptual models of longitudinal fish community organization in streams were examined: (1) niche diversity model (NDM), (2) stream continuum model (SCM), (3) immigrant accessibility model (IAM), (4) environmental stability model (ESM), and (5) adventitious stream model (ASM). We used differences among models in their predictions about temporal species turnover, along with five spatiotemporal fish community data sets, to evaluate model applicability. Models were similar in predicting a positive species richness–stream size relationship and longitudinal species nestedness, but differed in predicting either similar temporal species turnover throughout the stream continuum (NDM, SCM), higher turnover upstream (IAM, ESM), or higher turnover downstream (ASM). We calculated measures of spatial and temporal variation from spatiotemporal fish data in five wadeable streams in central and eastern North America spanning 34–68 years (French Creek [New York], Piasa Creek [Illinois], Spruce Run [Virginia], Little Stony Creek [Virginia], and Sinking Creek [Virginia]). All streams exhibited substantial species turnover (i.e., at least 27% turnover in stream-scale species pools), in contrast to the predictions of the SCM. Furthermore, community change was greater in downstream than upstream reaches in four of five streams. This result is most consistent with the ASM and suggests that downstream communities are strongly influenced by migrants to and from species pools outside the focal stream. In Sinking Creek, which is isolated from external species pools, temporal species turnover (via increased richness) was higher upstream than downstream, which is a pattern most consistent with the IAM or ESM. These results corroborate the hypothesis that temperate stream habitats and fish communities are temporally dynamic and that fish migration and environmental disturbances play fundamental roles in stream fish community organization.

  19. Forest succession on four habitat types in western Montana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephen F. Arno; Dennis G. Simmerman; Robert E. Keane

    1985-01-01

    Presents classifications of successional community types on four major forest habitat types in western Montana. Classifications show the sequences of seral community types developing after stand-replacing wildfire and clearcutting with broadcast burning, mechanical scarification, or no followup treatment. Information is provided for associating vegetational response to...

  20. Aquatic habitat modifications in La Plata River basin, Patagonia and associated marine areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mugetti, Ana Cristina; Calcagno, Alberto Tomás; Brieva, Carlos Alberto; Giangiobbe, María Silvia; Pagani, Andrea; Gonzalez, Silvia

    2004-02-01

    This paper describes the environmental characteristics and situation of aquatic habitats and communities in southern continental and maritime areas of southeastern South America (Patagonian Shelf GIWA Subregion), resulting from an overall assessment carried out within the framework of a GIWA project, mostly on the basis of publicly available data. The main focus of the analysis was on the current situation of transboundary water resources and anthropogenic impacts. In the inland waters, habitat and community modifications result, principally, from dams and reservoirs built in the main watercourses for hydroelectric power generation and other uses. The transformation of lotic environments into lentic ones have affected habitats and altered biotic communities. In the La Plata River basin, invasive exotic species have displaced native ones. Habitats in the ocean have been degraded, as their biodiversity becomes affected by overfishing and pollution. This article includes a discussion on the causal chain and the policy options elaborated for the Coastal Ecosystem of Buenos Aires province and the Argentinean-Uruguayan Common Fishing Zone, where fishing resources are shared by both countries.

  1. Non-cultural methods of human microflora evaluation for the benefit of crew medical control in confined habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viacheslav, Ilyin; Lana, Moukhamedieva; Georgy, Osipov; Aleksey, Batov; Zoya, Soloviova; Robert, Mardanov; Yana, Panina; Anna, Gegenava

    2011-05-01

    Current control of human microflora is a great problem not only for the space medicine but also for practical health care. Due to many reasons its realization by classical bacteriological method is difficult in practical application or cannot be done. To evaluate non-cultural methods of microbial control of crews in a confined habitat we evaluated two different methods. The first method is based on digital treatment of microbial visual images, appearing after gram staining of microbial material from natural sample. This way the rate between gram-positive and gram-negative microbe could be gained as well as differentiation of rods and cocci could be attained, which is necessary for primary evaluation of human microbial cenosis in remote confined habitats. The other non-culture method of human microflora evaluation is gas chromatomass spectrometry (gcms) analysis of swabs gathered from different body sites. Gc-ms testing of swabs allows one to validate quantitative and special microflora based on specific lipid markers analysis.

  2. When small changes matter: the role of cross-scale interactions between habitat and ecological connectivity in recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thrush, Simon F; Hewitt, Judi E; Lohrer, Andrew M; Chiaroni, Luca D

    2013-01-01

    Interaction between the diversity of local communities and the degree of connectivity between them has the potential to influence local recovery rates and thus profoundly affect community dynamics in the face of the cumulative impacts that occur across regions. Although such complex interactions have been modeled, field experiments in natural ecosystems to investigate the importance of interactions between local and regional processes are rare, especially so in coastal marine seafloor habitats subjected to many types of disturbance. We conducted a defaunation experiment at eight subtidal sites, incorporating manipulation of habitat structure, to test the relative importance of local habitat features and colonist supply in influencing macrobenthic community recovery rate. Our sites varied in community composition, habitat characteristics, and hydrodynamic conditions, and we conducted the experiment in two phases, exposing defaunated plots to colonists during periods of either high or low larval colonist supply. In both phases of the experiment, five months after disturbance, we were able to develop models that explained a large proportion of variation in community recovery rate between sites. Our results emphasize that the connectivity to the regional species pool influences recovery rate, and although local habitat effects were important, the strength of these effects was affected by broader-scale site characteristics and connectivity. Empirical evidence that cross-scale interactions are important in disturbance-recovery dynamics emphasizes the complex dynamics underlying seafloor community responses to cumulative disturbance.

  3. Stream habitat structure influences macroinvertebrate response to pesticides

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Jes; Wiberg-Larsen, Peter; Baattrup-Pedersen, Annette

    2012-01-01

    Agricultural pesticide contamination in surface waters is increasingly threatening to impair the surface water ecosystems. Agricultural streams are furthermore often heavily maintained to optimise the transport of water away from fields. The physical habitat degradation that result from heavy...... stream maintenance probably introduce additional stress that may act in concert with pesticide stress. We surveyed pesticide contamination and macroinvertebrate community structure in 14 streams along a gradient of expected pesticide exposure. A paired-reach approach was applied to differentiate...... the effects of pesticides between sites with degraded and more undisturbed physical properties. The effect of pesticides on macroinvertebrate communities (measured as the relative abundance of SPEcies At Risk) was increased at stream sites with degraded physical habitats primarily due to the absence...

  4. Valuing and Evaluating Community-Engaged Scholarship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shephard, Kerry; Brown, Kim; Guiney, Tess; Deaker, Lynley

    2018-01-01

    This article examines the nature of, and need for, evaluation of community-engaged university teaching and research. The research was conducted as part of a larger project aimed at improving institutional understanding of how to best support community-engaged university people. We interviewed 25 community-engaged colleagues, and used a general…

  5. Strong links between metal contamination, habitat modification and estuarine larval fish distributions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKinley, Andrew C.; Miskiewicz, Anthony; Taylor, Matthew D.; Johnston, Emma L.

    2011-01-01

    Changes to larval fish assemblages may have far reaching ecological impacts. Correlations between habitat modification, contamination and marine larval fish communities have rarely been assessed in situ. We investigated links between the large-scale distribution of stressors and larval fish assemblages in estuarine environments. Larval fish communities were sampled using a benthic sled within the inner and outer zones of three heavily modified and three relatively unmodified estuaries. Larval abundances were significantly greater in modified estuaries, and there were trends towards greater diversity in these systems. Differences in larval community composition were strongly related to sediment metal levels and reduced seagrass cover. The differences observed were driven by two abundant species, Paedogobius kimurai and Ambassis jacksoniensis, which occurred in large numbers almost exclusively in highly contaminated and pristine locations respectively. These findings suggest that contamination and habitat alteration manifest in substantial differences in the composition of estuarine larval fish assemblages. - Highlights: → We examine contamination/habitat modification impacts on larval fish. → Larvae communities differ between modified/unmodified estuaries. → Larvae are more abundant/diverse in modified areas. → Trends are strongly related to sediment metals/seagrass cover. → Larval impacts have wider ecological importance. - We describe strong links between sediment metals contamination, habitat modification and substantial differences in the composition of the estuarine larval fish assemblage.

  6. Evaluating carbon storage, timber harvest, and habitat possibilities for a Western Cascades (USA) forest landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kline, Jeffrey D; Harmon, Mark E; Spies, Thomas A; Morzillo, Anita T; Pabst, Robert J; McComb, Brenda C; Schnekenburger, Frank; Olsen, Keith A; Csuti, Blair; Vogeler, Jody C

    2016-10-01

    Forest policymakers and managers have long sought ways to evaluate the capability of forest landscapes to jointly produce timber, habitat, and other ecosystem services in response to forest management. Currently, carbon is of particular interest as policies for increasing carbon storage on federal lands are being proposed. However, a challenge in joint production analysis of forest management is adequately representing ecological conditions and processes that influence joint production relationships. We used simulation models of vegetation structure, forest sector carbon, and potential wildlife habitat to characterize landscape-level joint production possibilities for carbon storage, timber harvest, and habitat for seven wildlife species across a range of forest management regimes. We sought to (1) characterize the general relationships of production possibilities for combinations of carbon storage, timber, and habitat, and (2) identify management variables that most influence joint production relationships. Our 160 000-ha study landscape featured environmental conditions typical of forests in the Western Cascade Mountains of Oregon (USA). Our results indicate that managing forests for carbon storage involves trade-offs among timber harvest and habitat for focal wildlife species, depending on the disturbance interval and utilization intensity followed. Joint production possibilities for wildlife species varied in shape, ranging from competitive to complementary to compound, reflecting niche breadth and habitat component needs of species examined. Managing Pacific Northwest forests to store forest sector carbon can be roughly complementary with habitat for Northern Spotted Owl, Olive-sided Flycatcher, and red tree vole. However, managing forests to increase carbon storage potentially can be competitive with timber production and habitat for Pacific marten, Pileated Woodpecker, and Western Bluebird, depending on the disturbance interval and harvest intensity chosen

  7. [Diversity and classification system of weed community in Harbin City, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiao-Shuang; Liang, Hong; Song, Kun; Da, Liang-Jun

    2014-08-01

    To analyze the causes of weed community diversity and their strategies of adaption to the high heterogeneity of urban habitats, weed communities in the central urban area of Harbin, China were studied, and a classification system was established for the weed communities. There were 175 weed species, belonging to 128 genera and 38 families. The heterogeneous urban habitats and species' temporal niche differentiation resulted in the highly diversified weed communities. The high proportions of mono-species dominance and annual species dominance communities were their response to the unstable urban habitats under human disturbances with high intensities and frequencies. A four-level classification system was established in terms of plant species and habitat conditions. Within this system, the identified 1763 weed communities could be categorized into two types of life form, 5 types of dormancy form, 22 community groups, and 119 dominance communities.

  8. Evaluating extinction in rare habitats: an essay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camacho, A. I.

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available Inference and estimation are the Achilles heel of many biological disciplines. The validation of results is the first step before taking any further decision. In Biodiversity studies the technical problems in validation are similar to those faced in other disciplines. The main difference with areas like medicine is that a validation error in the latter can easily take you to court, but very few responsibilities apart from moral or ethical ones generally derive from a faulty estimation or validation in Biodiversity. However, many political decisions concerning conservation issues, which in many cases affect powerful economic interests depend on the reliability of those biodiversity studies. Getting good, reliable information is not always easy, and this explains in part, the success of critical voices like Simon (1998 and Lomborg (2001. New methodologies like Population Viability Analysis has been developed to take advantage of the potential information contained in periodical sampling. We apply it to a peculiar and difficult to study fauna: the fauna of the aquatic subterranean environment. Lack of regular information and scarcity of the fauna due to difficulty to reach their proper habitat are the main problems that confront this analysis. However, despite its limitations, the analysis points towards a need to better understand the structure of the subterranean habitat from “an animal point of view” and the need of more regular sampling at the same time that the other environmental parameters are taken.

    La inferencia y la estima son el talón de Aquiles de muchas disciplinas biológicas. La validación de resultados es el primer paso antes de tomar decisiones ulteriores. En estudios de Biodiversidad los problemas técnicos de validación son semejantes a los que se enfrentan otras disciplinas. La principal diferencia con áreas como Medicina es que un error en validación en ésta última puede terminar fácilmente en el juzgado

  9. A technical guide for monitoring wildlife habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    M.M. Rowland; C.D. Vojta

    2013-01-01

    Information about status and trend of wildlife habitat is important for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service to accomplish its mission and meet its legal requirements. As the steward of 193 million acres (ac) of Federal land, the Forest Service needs to evaluate the status of wildlife habitat and how it compares with desired conditions. Habitat monitoring...

  10. Hurricane storm surge and amphibian communities in coastal wetlands of northwestern Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunzburger, M.S.; Hughes, W.B.; Barichivich, W.J.; Staiger, J.S.

    2010-01-01

    Isolated wetlands in the Southeastern United States are dynamic habitats subject to fluctuating environmental conditions. Wetlands located near marine environments are subject to alterations in water chemistry due to storm surge during hurricanes. The objective of our study was to evaluate the effect of storm surge overwash on wetland amphibian communities. Thirty-two wetlands in northwestern Florida were sampled over a 45-month period to assess amphibian species richness and water chemistry. During this study, seven wetlands were overwashed by storm surge from Hurricane Dennis which made landfall 10 July 2005 in the Florida panhandle. This event allowed us to evaluate the effect of storm surge overwash on water chemistry and amphibian communities of the wetlands. Specific conductance across all wetlands was low pre-storm (marine habitats are resistant to the effects of storm surge overwash. ?? 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  11. Pelagic habitat visualization: the need for a third (and fourth) dimension: HabitatSpace

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beegle-Krause, C; Vance, Tiffany; Reusser, Debbie; Stuebe, David; Howlett, Eoin

    2009-01-01

    Habitat in open water is not simply a 2-D to 2.5-D surface such as the ocean bottom or the air-water interface. Rather, pelagic habitat is a 3-D volume of water that can change over time, leading us to the term habitat space. Visualization and analysis in 2-D is well supported with GIS tools, but a new tool was needed for visualization and analysis in four dimensions. Observational data (cruise profiles (xo, yo, z, to)), numerical circulation model fields (x,y,z,t), and trajectories (larval fish, 4-D line) need to be merged together in a meaningful way for visualization and analysis. As a first step toward this new framework, UNIDATA’s Integrated Data Viewer (IDV) has been used to create a set of tools for habitat analysis in 4-D. IDV was designed for 3-D+time geospatial data in the meteorological community. NetCDF JavaTM libraries allow the tool to read many file formats including remotely located data (e.g. data available via OPeNDAP ). With this project, IDV has been adapted for use in delineating habitat space for multiple fish species in the ocean. The ability to define and visualize boundaries of a water mass, which meets specific biologically relevant criteria (e.g., volume, connectedness, and inter-annual variability) based on model results and observational data, will allow managers to investigate the survival of individual year classes of commercially important fisheries. Better understanding of the survival of these year classes will lead to improved forecasting of fisheries recruitment.

  12. Prey distribution, physical habitat features, and guild traits interact to produce contrasting shorebird assemblages among foraging patches.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beth M VanDusen

    Full Text Available Worldwide declines in shorebird populations, driven largely by habitat loss and degradation, motivate environmental managers to preserve and restore the critical coastal habitats on which these birds depend. Effective habitat management requires an understanding of the factors that determine habitat use and value to shorebirds, extending from individuals to the entire community. While investigating the factors that influenced shorebird foraging distributions among neighboring intertidal sand flats, we built upon species-level understandings of individual-based, small-scale foraging decisions to develop more comprehensive guild- and community-level insights. We found that densities and community composition of foraging shorebirds varied substantially among elevations within some tidal flats and among five flats despite their proximity (all located within a 400-m stretch of natural, unmodified inlet shoreline. Non-dimensional multivariate analyses revealed that the changing composition of the shorebird community among flats and tidal elevations correlated significantly (ρ(s = 0.56 with the spatial structure of the benthic invertebrate prey community. Sediment grain-sizes affected shorebird community spatial patterns indirectly by influencing benthic macroinvertebrate community compositions. Furthermore, combining sediment and macroinvertebrate information produced a 27% increase in correlation (ρ(s = 0.71 with shorebird assemblage patterns over the correlation of the bird community with the macroinvertebrate community alone. Beyond its indirect effects acting through prey distributions, granulometry of the flats influenced shorebird foraging directly by modifying prey availability. Our study highlights the importance of habitat heterogeneity, showing that no single patch type was ideal for the entire shorebird community. Generally, shorebird density and diversity were greatest at lower elevations on flats when they became exposed; these

  13. A Conceptual Approach to Recreation Habitat Analysis

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hamilton, H. R

    1996-01-01

    .... The Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) is a commonly used technique for assessing human impacts on the vigor of wildlife species, and serves as the model for the Recreation Habitat Analysis Method (RHAM...

  14. Production in aquatic macrophyte communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Binzer, Thomas; Sand-Jensen, Kaj

    2002-01-01

    -dimensional structure because of the strong drag and shear forces of moving water. This difference in canopy structure has been suggested to account for the three- to fivefold higher gross production rates in terrestrial than aquatic communities. To evaluate the effect of community structure in aquatic habitats, we......Many terrestrial plant canopies regulate spatial patterns in leaf density and leaf inclination to distribute light evenly between the photosynthetic tissue and to optimize light utilization efficiency. Sessile aquatic macrophytes, however, cannot maintain the same well-defined three...... was markedly enhanced by a vertical orientation of thalli when absorptance and community density were both high. This result implies that aquatic macrophytes of high thallus absorptance and community density exposed to high light are limited in attaining high gross production rates because of their inability...

  15. Influence of Time since Fire and Micro-Habitat Availability on Terricolous Lichen Communities in Black Spruce (Picea mariana Boreal Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saliha Zouaoui

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Terricolous lichens are an important component of boreal forest ecosystems, both in terms of function and diversity. In this study, we examined the relative contribution of microhabitat characteristics and time elapsed since the last fire in shaping terricolous lichen assemblages in boreal forests that are frequently affected by severe stand-replacing fires. We sampled 12 stands distributed across five age classes (from 43 to >200 years. In each stand, species cover (% of all terricolous lichen species and species richness were evaluated within 30 microplots of 1 m2. Our results show that time elapsed since the last fire was the factor that contributed the most to explaining terricolous lichen abundance and species composition, and that lichen cover showed a quadratic relationship with stand age. Habitat variables such as soil characteristics were also important in explaining lichen richness. These results suggest that the presence of suitable substrates is not sufficient for the conservation of late-successional terricolous lichen communities in this ecosystem, and that they also need relatively long periods of times for species dispersal and establishment.

  16. Identifying Farm Pond Habitat Suitability for the Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus: A Conservation-Perspective Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Hsien Lai

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to establish a habitat-suitability assessment model for Gallinula chloropus, or the Common Moorhen, to be applied to the selection of the most suitable farm pond for habitat conservation in Chiayi County, Taiwan. First, the fuzzy Delphi method was employed to evaluate habitat selection factors and calculate the weights of these factors. The results showed that the eight crucial factors, by importance, in descending order, were (1 area ratio of farmlands within 200 m of the farm pond; (2 pond area; (3 pond perimeter; (4 aquatic plant coverage of the pond surface; (5 drought period; (6 coverage of high and low shrubs around the pond bank; (7 bank type; and (8 water-surface-to-bank distance. Subsequently, field evaluations of 75 farm ponds in Chiayi County were performed. The results indicated that 15 farm ponds had highly-suitable habitats and were inhabited by unusually high numbers of Common Moorhens; these habitats were most in need of conservation. A total of two farm ponds were found to require habitat-environment improvements, and Common Moorhens with typical reproductive capacity could be appropriately introduced into 22 farm ponds to restore the ecosystem of the species. Additionally, the habitat suitability and number of Common Moorhens in 36 farm ponds were lower than average; these ponds could be used for agricultural irrigation, detention basins, or for recreational use by community residents. Finally, the total habitat suitability scores and occurrence of Common Moorhens in each farm pond were used to verify the accuracy of the habitat-suitability assessment model for the Common Moorhen. The overall accuracy was 0.8, and the Kappa value was 0.60, which indicates that the model established in this study exhibited high credibility. To sum up, this is an applicable framework not only to assess the habitat suitability of farm ponds for Common Moorhens, but also to determine whether a particular location may

  17. Understanding Existing Salmonid Habitat Availability and Connectivity to Improve River Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duffin, J.; Yager, E.; Tonina, D.; Benjankar, R. M.

    2017-12-01

    In the Pacific Northwest river restoration is common for salmon conservation. Mangers need methods to help target restoration to problem areas in rivers to create habitat that meets a species' needs. Hydraulic models and habitat suitability curves provide basic information on habitat availability and overall quality, but these analyses need to be expanded to address habitat quality based on the accessibility of habitats required for multiple life stages. Scientists are starting to use connectivity measurements to understand the longitudinal proximity of habitat patches, which can be used to address the habitat variability of a reach. By evaluating the availability and quality of habitat and calculating the connectivity between complementary habitats, such as spawning and rearing habitats, we aim to identify areas that should be targeted for restoration. To meet these goals, we assessed Chinook salmon habitat on the Lemhi River in Idaho. The depth and velocity outputs from a 2D hydraulic model are used in conjunction with locally created habitat suitability curves to evaluate the availability and quality of habitat for multiple Chinook salmon life stages. To assess the variability of the habitat, connectivity between habitat patches necessary for different life stages is calculated with a proximity index. A spatial representation of existing habitat quality and connectivity between complimentary habitats can be linked to river morphology by the evaluation of local geomorphic characteristics, including sinuosity and channel units. The understanding of the current habitat availability for multiple life stage needs, the connectivity between these habitat patches, and their relationship with channel morphology can help managers better identify restoration needs and direct their limited resources.

  18. Effects of habitat and landscape characteristics on medium and large mammal species richness and composition in northern Uruguay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María José Andrade-Núñez

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The increasing world population and demand for food and other products has accelerated the conversion of natural habitats into agricultural lands, plantations and urban areas. Changes in habitat and landscape characteristics due to land-use change can have a significant effect on species presence, abundance, and distribution. Multi-scale approaches have been used to determine the proper spatial scales at which species and communities are responding to habitat transformation. In this context, we evaluated medium and large mammal species richness and composition in gallery forest (n = 10, grassland (n = 10, and exotic tree plantation (n = 10 in a region where grasslands have been converted into exotic tree plantations. We quantified mammal species richness and composition with camera traps and track surveys. The composition of the mammal community was related with local habitat variables, and landscape variables measured at seven spatial scales. We found 14 mammal species in forest, 11 species in plantation, and 7 mammal species in grassland. Two species are exotics, the wild boar Sus scrofa Linnaeus, 1758 and the European hare Lepus europaeus Pallas, 1778. The most common species are the crab-eating fox Cerdocyon thous Linnaeus, 1766, the nine-banded armadillo Dasypus novemcinctus Linnaeus, 1758 and the gray brocket deer Mazama gouazoubira G. Fischer, 1814 which are generalist species. Our results showed significant differences in mammal species richness and composition among the three habitat types. Plantations can have positive and negative effects on the presence of species restricted to grasslands. Positive effects are reflected in a wider local distribution of some forest species that rarely use grassland. The most important habitat and landscape variables that influenced mammal species richness and composition were vertical structure index, canopy cover, tree species diversity, percentage of grass, and the percentage of forest and grassland

  19. Migratory Waterfowl Habitat Selection in Relation to Aquatic Vegetation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Dick, Gary

    2004-01-01

    This technical note describes studies of environmental conditions and habitat quality of replicated pond ecosystems dominated by populations of exotic plants or mixed communities of native aquatic plants...

  20. Study of Plant Species Richness in Habitats with Different Grazing Intensities at Golestan National Park and Surrounding Area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Bagheri

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Considering the importance of plant diversity and to evaluate the effect of grazing pressure on species richness and structure of plant communities, this experiment was conducted at Golestan National Park and its surrounding areas in the north east of Iran. Sampling was conducted in intact and abandoned habitats and habitats under seasonal and heavy grazing, using Modified Whitaker Plot in 1, 10,100 and 1000 m2 spatial scales. Results showed that the composition of plant species from different habitats was different. In addition the increasing intensity of grazing increased the importance of therophytes and decreased the role of hemicryptophytes and phanerophytes and also decreasd the amount of species richness. Mean species richness of studied habitat showed a significant difference in all four sampling spatial scales. The results showed that plant species richness decreased in the areas affected by heavy grazing and conservation against grazing plays an important role in maintaining species richness.

  1. Habitat connectivity as a metric for aquatic microhabitat quality: Application to Chinook salmon spawning habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan Carnie; Daniele Tonina; Jim McKean; Daniel Isaak

    2016-01-01

    Quality of fish habitat at the scale of a single fish, at the metre resolution, which we defined here as microhabitat, has been primarily evaluated on short reaches, and their results have been extended through long river segments with methods that do not account for connectivity, a measure of the spatial distribution of habitat patches. However, recent...

  2. [Community health course--student's evaluation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juresa, Vesna; Musil, Vera; Sosić, Zvonko; Majer, Marjeta; Pavleković, Gordana

    2010-12-01

    Since 1952, Andrija Stampar School of Public Health, School of Medicine, University of Zagreb, has provided a community health course, based on the medical education approach that the main fields of physicians' action are human settlements and not only consulting rooms and clinics. The aim of the study was to compare community health course students' evaluations immediately after attending the course at the 4th and 6th study years. The survey included 224 4th year medical students attending the community course during the academic year 2007-2008 and 192 same-generation 6th year students (85.7%) during the academic year 2009-2010. Students were required to fill out an evaluation questionnaire about the activities during the community health course using grades from 1-poor to 5-excellent, and to write personal remarks and essay. The academic year 2007-2008 students (n=224) were very satisfied (grades 5 and 4) with preparatory seminar (98% of students), final seminar (97%), course organization (90%) and course contents (89%). The same grades were allocated by 98% of students to public health field research, 94% to work in community nurse service, 93% to work in family practice and health promotion in school and kindergarten, and 87% to water sampling. Satisfaction with the community health course was very emotionally described in final essays: "... work with community nurse service in the poorest part of Croatia has changed my life. I have learned in only few hours to wish less and to give more. Every physician should experience it, because that is real life". Results of the same-generation students (n=192) in the academic year 2009-2010, now at 6th study year, showed them to be still very satisfied (grades 5 and 4) with the activities in the community health course: 94% with health promotion, 92% with work in the community nurse service and family medicine, 86% with course contents, 82% with course organization, 78% with final seminar, 64% with preparatory seminar

  3. Evaluating the Aquatic Habitat Potential of Flooded Polders in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R. Durand

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available https://doi.org/10.15447/sfews.2017v15iss4art4Large tracts of land in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta are subsided due to agricultural practices, creating polders up to 10 m below sea level that are vulnerable to flooding. As protective dikes breach, these become shallow, open water habitats that will not resemble any historical state. I investigated physical and biotic drivers of novel flooded polder habitat, using a Native Species Benefit Index (NSBI to predict the nature of future Delta ecosystems. Results suggest that flooded polders in the north Delta will have the ecology and fish community composition of a tidal river plain, those in the Cache-Lindsey Complex will have that of a tidal backwater, those in the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers a brackish estuary, and those in the south Delta a fresh water lake. Flooded east-side Delta polders will likely be a transitional zone between south Delta lake-like ecosystems and north Delta tidal river plains. I compared each regional zone with the limited available literature and data on local fish assemblies to find support for NSBI predictions. Because flood probabilities and repair prioritization analyses suggest that polders in the south Delta are most likely to flood and be abandoned, without extensive intervention, much of the Delta will become a freshwater lake ecosystem, dominated by alien species. Proactive management of flooded tracts will nearly always hedge risks, save money and offer more functional habitats in the future; however, without proper immediate incentives, it will be difficult to encourage strong management practices.

  4. Water-quality models to assess algal community dynamics, water quality, and fish habitat suitability for two agricultural land-use dominated lakes in Minnesota, 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Erik A.; Kiesling, Richard L.; Ziegeweid, Jeffrey R.

    2017-07-20

    Fish habitat can degrade in many lakes due to summer blue-green algal blooms. Predictive models are needed to better manage and mitigate loss of fish habitat due to these changes. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, developed predictive water-quality models for two agricultural land-use dominated lakes in Minnesota—Madison Lake and Pearl Lake, which are part of Minnesota’s sentinel lakes monitoring program—to assess algal community dynamics, water quality, and fish habitat suitability of these two lakes under recent (2014) meteorological conditions. The interaction of basin processes to these two lakes, through the delivery of nutrient loads, were simulated using CE-QUAL-W2, a carbon-based, laterally averaged, two-dimensional water-quality model that predicts distribution of temperature and oxygen from interactions between nutrient cycling, primary production, and trophic dynamics.The CE-QUAL-W2 models successfully predicted water temperature and dissolved oxygen on the basis of the two metrics of mean absolute error and root mean square error. For Madison Lake, the mean absolute error and root mean square error were 0.53 and 0.68 degree Celsius, respectively, for the vertical temperature profile comparisons; for Pearl Lake, the mean absolute error and root mean square error were 0.71 and 0.95 degree Celsius, respectively, for the vertical temperature profile comparisons. Temperature and dissolved oxygen were key metrics for calibration targets. These calibrated lake models also simulated algal community dynamics and water quality. The model simulations presented potential explanations for persistently large total phosphorus concentrations in Madison Lake, key differences in nutrient concentrations between these lakes, and summer blue-green algal bloom persistence.Fish habitat suitability simulations for cool-water and warm-water fish indicated that, in general, both lakes contained a large

  5. Doing Your Community Education Evaluation: A Guide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Malcolm B.; And Others

    Intended to assist in the evaluation of community education programs, this guide is for program decision makers, primarily at the local level, including staff of school districts, park and recreation departments, other local and state agencies, and private citizens serving on community education boards and councils. Part 1, Evaluation and…

  6. Long-term habitat changes in a protected area: Implications for herpetofauna habitat management and restoration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chantel E Markle

    Full Text Available Point Pelee National Park, located at the southern-most tip of Canada's mainland, historically supported a large number of herpetofauna species; however, despite nearly a century of protection, six snake and five amphibian species have disappeared, and remaining species-at-risk populations are thought to be in decline. We hypothesized that long-term changes in availability and distribution of critical habitat types may have contributed to the disappearance of herpetofauna. To track habitat changes we used aerial image data spanning 85 years (1931-2015 and manually digitized and classified image data using a standardized framework. Change-detection analyses were used to evaluate the relative importance of proportionate loss and fragmentation of 17 habitat types. Marsh habitat diversity and aquatic connectivity has declined since 1931. The marsh matrix transitioned from a graminoid and forb shallow marsh interspersed with water to a cattail dominated marsh, altering critical breeding, foraging, and overwintering habitat. Reduced diversity of marsh habitats appears to be linked to the expansion of invasive Phragmites australis, which invaded prior to 2000. Loss of open habitats such as savanna and meadow has reduced availability of high quality thermoregulation habitat for reptiles. Restoration of the northwestern region and tip of Point Pelee National Park to a mixed landscape of shallow wetlands (cattail, graminoid, forb, open water and eradication of dense Phragmites stands should improve habitat diversity. Our results suggest that long-term landscape changes resulting from habitat succession and invasive species can negatively affect habitat suitability for herpetofauna and protection of land alone does not necessarily equate to protection of sensitive herpetofauna.

  7. Long-term habitat changes in a protected area: Implications for herpetofauna habitat management and restoration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markle, Chantel E; Chow-Fraser, Gillian; Chow-Fraser, Patricia

    2018-01-01

    Point Pelee National Park, located at the southern-most tip of Canada's mainland, historically supported a large number of herpetofauna species; however, despite nearly a century of protection, six snake and five amphibian species have disappeared, and remaining species-at-risk populations are thought to be in decline. We hypothesized that long-term changes in availability and distribution of critical habitat types may have contributed to the disappearance of herpetofauna. To track habitat changes we used aerial image data spanning 85 years (1931-2015) and manually digitized and classified image data using a standardized framework. Change-detection analyses were used to evaluate the relative importance of proportionate loss and fragmentation of 17 habitat types. Marsh habitat diversity and aquatic connectivity has declined since 1931. The marsh matrix transitioned from a graminoid and forb shallow marsh interspersed with water to a cattail dominated marsh, altering critical breeding, foraging, and overwintering habitat. Reduced diversity of marsh habitats appears to be linked to the expansion of invasive Phragmites australis, which invaded prior to 2000. Loss of open habitats such as savanna and meadow has reduced availability of high quality thermoregulation habitat for reptiles. Restoration of the northwestern region and tip of Point Pelee National Park to a mixed landscape of shallow wetlands (cattail, graminoid, forb, open water) and eradication of dense Phragmites stands should improve habitat diversity. Our results suggest that long-term landscape changes resulting from habitat succession and invasive species can negatively affect habitat suitability for herpetofauna and protection of land alone does not necessarily equate to protection of sensitive herpetofauna.

  8. Anthropogenic land use shapes the composition and phylogenetic structure of soil arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moora, Mari; Davison, John; Öpik, Maarja; Metsis, Madis; Saks, Ülle; Jairus, Teele; Vasar, Martti; Zobel, Martin

    2014-12-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi play an important role in ecosystems, but little is known about how soil AM fungal community composition varies in relation to habitat type and land-use intensity. We molecularly characterized AM fungal communities in soil samples (n = 88) from structurally open (permanent grassland, intensive and sustainable agriculture) and forested habitats (primeval forest and spruce plantation). The habitats harboured significantly different AM fungal communities, and there was a broad difference in fungal community composition between forested and open habitats, the latter being characterized by higher average AM fungal richness. Within both open and forest habitats, intensive land use significantly influenced community composition. There was a broad difference in the phylogenetic structure of AM fungal communities between mechanically disturbed and nondisturbed habitats. Taxa from Glomeraceae served as indicator species for the nondisturbed habitats, while taxa from Archaeosporaceae, Claroideoglomeraceae and Diversisporaceae were indicators for the disturbed habitats. The distribution of these indicator taxa among habitat types in the MaarjAM global database of AM fungal diversity was in accordance with their local indicator status. © 2014 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Community detection algorithm evaluation with ground-truth data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jebabli, Malek; Cherifi, Hocine; Cherifi, Chantal; Hamouda, Atef

    2018-02-01

    Community structure is of paramount importance for the understanding of complex networks. Consequently, there is a tremendous effort in order to develop efficient community detection algorithms. Unfortunately, the issue of a fair assessment of these algorithms is a thriving open question. If the ground-truth community structure is available, various clustering-based metrics are used in order to compare it versus the one discovered by these algorithms. However, these metrics defined at the node level are fairly insensitive to the variation of the overall community structure. To overcome these limitations, we propose to exploit the topological features of the 'community graphs' (where the nodes are the communities and the links represent their interactions) in order to evaluate the algorithms. To illustrate our methodology, we conduct a comprehensive analysis of overlapping community detection algorithms using a set of real-world networks with known a priori community structure. Results provide a better perception of their relative performance as compared to classical metrics. Moreover, they show that more emphasis should be put on the topology of the community structure. We also investigate the relationship between the topological properties of the community structure and the alternative evaluation measures (quality metrics and clustering metrics). It appears clearly that they present different views of the community structure and that they must be combined in order to evaluate the effectiveness of community detection algorithms.

  10. Threatened corals provide underexplored microbial habitats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinichi Sunagawa

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Contemporary in-depth sequencing of environmental samples has provided novel insights into microbial community structures, revealing that their diversity had been previously underestimated. Communities in marine environments are commonly composed of a few dominant taxa and a high number of taxonomically diverse, low-abundance organisms. However, studying the roles and genomic information of these "rare" organisms remains challenging, because little is known about their ecological niches and the environmental conditions to which they respond. Given the current threat to coral reef ecosystems, we investigated the potential of corals to provide highly specialized habitats for bacterial taxa including those that are rarely detected or absent in surrounding reef waters. The analysis of more than 350,000 small subunit ribosomal RNA (16S rRNA sequence tags and almost 2,000 nearly full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that rare seawater biosphere members are highly abundant or even dominant in diverse Caribbean corals. Closely related corals (in the same genus/family harbored similar bacterial communities. At higher taxonomic levels, however, the similarities of these communities did not correlate with the phylogenetic relationships among corals, opening novel questions about the evolutionary stability of coral-microbial associations. Large proportions of OTUs (28.7-49.1% were unique to the coral species of origin. Analysis of the most dominant ribotypes suggests that many uncovered bacterial taxa exist in coral habitats and await future exploration. Our results indicate that coral species, and by extension other animal hosts, act as specialized habitats of otherwise rare microbes in marine ecosystems. Here, deep sequencing provided insights into coral microbiota at an unparalleled resolution and revealed that corals harbor many bacterial taxa previously not known. Given that two of the coral species investigated are listed as threatened under

  11. Chapter 5: Application of state-and-transition models to evaluate wildlife habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anita T. Morzillo; Pamela Comeleo; Blair Csuti; Stephanie Lee

    2014-01-01

    Wildlife habitat analysis often is a central focus of natural resources management and policy. State-and-transition models (STMs) allow for simulation of landscape level ecological processes, and for managers to test “what if” scenarios of how those processes may affect wildlife habitat. This chapter describes the methods used to link STM output to wildlife habitat to...

  12. Comparison of two methods for estimating the abundance, diversity and habitat preference of fluvial macroinvertebrates in contrasting habitats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alonso, A.; Camargo, J.A.

    2010-01-01

    In this research we evaluate the effects of the method used for estimating the potential surface available for benthic macroinvertebrates in macrophyte and unvegetated habitats on several metrics and habitat preference of aquatic macroinvertebrates in the upper catchment of the Henares River

  13. The world's richest tadpole communities show functional redundancy and low functional diversity: ecological data on Madagascar's stream-dwelling amphibian larvae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Randrianiaina Roger-Daniel

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Functional diversity illustrates the range of ecological functions in a community. It allows revealing the appearance of functional redundancy in communities and processes of community assembly. Functional redundancy illustrates the overlap in ecological functions of community members which may be an indicator of community resilience. We evaluated patterns of species richness, functional diversity and functional redundancy on tadpole communities in rainforest streams in Madagascar. This habitat harbours the world's most species-rich stream tadpole communities which are due to their occurrence in primary habitat of particular interest for functional diversity studies. Results Species richness of tadpole communities is largely determined by characteristics of the larval habitat (stream structure, not by adult habitat (forest structure. Species richness is positively correlated with a size-velocity gradient of the streams, i.e. communities follow a classical species-area relationship. While widely observed for other taxa, this is an unusual pattern for anuran larvae which usually is expected to be hump-shaped. Along the species richness gradient, we quantified functional diversity of all communities considering the similarity and dissimilarity of species in 18 traits related to habitat use and foraging. Especially species-rich communities were characterised by an overlap of species function, i.e. by functional redundancy. By comparing the functional diversity of the observed communities with functional diversity of random assemblages, we found no differences at low species richness level, whereas observed species-rich communities have lower functional diversity than respective random assemblages. Conclusions We found functional redundancy being a feature of communities also in primary habitat, what has not been shown before using such a continuous measure. The observed species richness dependent pattern of low functional

  14. Selection indicates preference in diverse habitats: a ground-nesting bird (Charadrius melodus) using reservoir shoreline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anteau, Michael J; Sherfy, Mark H; Wiltermuth, Mark T

    2012-01-01

    Animals use proximate cues to select resources that maximize individual fitness. When animals have a diverse array of available habitats, those selected could give insights into true habitat preferences. Since the construction of the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River in North Dakota, Lake Sakakawea (SAK) has become an important breeding area for federally threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus; hereafter plovers). We used conditional logistic regression to examine nest-site selection at fine scales (1, 3, and 10 m) during summers 2006-2009 by comparing characteristics at 351 nests to those of 668 random sites within nesting territories. Plovers selected sites (1 m(2)) that were lower than unused random sites, increasing the risk of nest inundation. Plovers selected nest sites that were flat, had little silt, and at least 1 cobble; they also selected for 3-m radius nest areas that were relatively flat and devoid of vegetation and litter. Ninety percent of nests had nest sites (11% median), but against in the area 10-m from the nest, suggesting plovers select for patches or strips of gravel. Although elevation is rarely evaluated in studies of ground-nesting birds, our results underscore its importance in habitat-selection studies. Relative to where plovers historically nested, habitat at SAK has more diverse topography, substrate composition, vegetation communities, and greater water-level fluctuations. Accordingly, our results provide an example of how habitat-selection results can be interpreted as habitat preferences because they are not influenced by desired habitats being scarce or absent. Further, our results will be useful for directing habitat conservation for plovers and interpreting other habitat-selection studies.

  15. The impacts of Cenozoic climate and habitat changes on small mammal diversity of North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuels, Joshua X.; Hopkins, Samantha S. B.

    2017-02-01

    Through the Cenozoic, paleoclimate records show general trends of global cooling and increased aridity, and environments in North America shifted from predominantly forests to more open habitats. Paleobotanical records indicate grasses were present on the continent in the Eocene; however, paleosol and phytolith studies indicate that open habitats did not arise until the late Eocene or even later in the Oligocene. Studies of large mammalian herbivores have documented changes in ecomorphology and community structure through time, revealing that shifts in mammalian morphology occurred millions of years after the environmental changes thought to have triggered them. Smaller mammals, like rodents and lagomorphs, should more closely track climate and habitat changes due to their shorter generation times and smaller ranges, but these animals have received much less study. To examine changes in smaller mammals through time, we have assembled and analyzed an ecomorphological database of all North American rodent and lagomorph species. Analyses of these data found that rodent and lagomorph community structure changed dramatically through the Cenozoic, and shifts in diversity and ecology correspond closely with the timing of habitat changes. Cenozoic rodent and lagomorph species diversity is strongly biased by sampling of localities, but sampling-corrected diversity reveals diversity dynamics that, after an initial density-dependent diversification in the Eocene, track habitat changes and the appearance of new ecological adaptations. As habitats became more open and arid through time, rodent and lagomorph crown heights increased while burrowing, jumping, and cursorial adaptations became more prevalent. Through time, open-habitat specialists were added during periods of diversification, while closed-habitat taxa were disproportionately lost in subsequent diversity declines. While shifts among rodents and lagomorphs parallel changes in ungulate communities, they started

  16. Deep Space Habitat Concept Demonstrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bookout, Paul S.; Smitherman, David

    2015-01-01

    This project will develop, integrate, test, and evaluate Habitation Systems that will be utilized as technology testbeds and will advance NASA's understanding of alternative deep space mission architectures, requirements, and operations concepts. Rapid prototyping and existing hardware will be utilized to develop full-scale habitat demonstrators. FY 2014 focused on the development of a large volume Space Launch System (SLS) class habitat (Skylab Gen 2) based on the SLS hydrogen tank components. Similar to the original Skylab, a tank section of the SLS rocket can be outfitted with a deep space habitat configuration and launched as a payload on an SLS rocket. This concept can be used to support extended stay at the Lunar Distant Retrograde Orbit to support the Asteroid Retrieval Mission and provide a habitat suitable for human missions to Mars.

  17. Benthic communities at two remote Pacific coral reefs: effects of reef habitat, depth, and wave energy gradients on spatial patterns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gareth J. Williams

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Kingman Reef and Palmyra Atoll in the central Pacific are among the most remote coral reefs on the planet. Here we describe spatial patterns in their benthic communities across reef habitats and depths, and consider these in the context of oceanographic gradients. Benthic communities at both locations were dominated by calcifying organisms (54–86% cover, namely hard corals (20–74% and crustose coralline algae (CCA (10–36%. While turf algae were relatively common at both locations (8–22%, larger fleshy macroalgae were virtually absent at Kingman (<1% and rare at Palmyra (0.7–9.3%. Hard coral cover was higher, but with low diversity, in more sheltered habitats such as Palmyra’s backreef and Kingman’s patch reefs. Almost exclusive dominance by slow-growing Porites on Kingman’s patch reefs provides indirect evidence of competitive exclusion, probably late in a successional sequence. In contrast, the more exposed forereef habitats at both Kingman and Palmyra had higher coral diversity and were characterized by fast-growing corals (e.g., Acropora and Pocillopora, indicative of more dynamic environments. In general at both locations, soft coral cover increased with depth, likely reflecting increasingly efficient heterotrophic abilities. CCA and fleshy macroalgae cover decreased with depth, likely due to reduced light. Cover of other calcified macroalgae, predominantly Halimeda, increased with depth. This likely reflects the ability of many calcifying macroalgae to efficiently harvest light at deeper depths, in combination with an increased nutrient supply from upwelling promoting growth. At Palmyra, patterns of hard coral cover with depth were inconsistent, but cover peaked at mid-depths at Kingman. On Kingman’s forereef, benthic community composition was strongly related to wave energy, with hard coral cover decreasing and becoming more spatially clustered with increased wave energy, likely as a result of physical damage leading to

  18. Habitat evaluation of wild Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) and conservation priority setting in north-eastern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiaofeng, Luan; Yi, Qu; Diqiang, Li; Shirong, Liu; Xiulei, Wang; Bo, Wu; Chunquan, Zhu

    2011-01-01

    The Amur Tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) is one of the world's most endangered species. Recently, habitat fragmentation, food scarcity and human hunting have drastically reduced the population size and distribution areas of Amur tigers in the wild, leaving them on the verge of extinction. Presently, they are only found in the north-eastern part of China. In this study, we developed a reference framework using methods and technologies of analytic hierarchy process (AHP), remote sensing (RS), geographic information system (GIS), GAP analysis and Natural Break (Jenks) classification to evaluate the habitat and to set the conservation priorities for Amur tigers in eastern areas of Heilongjiang and Jilin Provinces of northeast China. We proposed a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) incorporating 7 factors covering natural conditions and human disturbance. Based on the HSI values, the suitability was classified into five levels from the most to not suitable. Finally, according to results of GAP analysis, we identified six conservation priorities and designed a conservation landscape incorporating four new nature reserves, enlarging two existing ones, and creating four linkages for Amur tigers in northeast China. The case study showed that the core habitats (the most suitable and highly suitable habitats) identified for Amur tigers covered 35,547 km(2), accounting for approximately 26.71% of the total study area (1,33,093 km(2)). However, existing nature reserves protected only (7124 km(2) or) 20.04% of the identified core habitats. Thus, enlargement of current reserves is necessary and urgent for the tiger's conservation and restoration. Moreover, the establishment of wildlife corridors linking core habitats will provide an efficient reserve network for tiger conservation to maintain the evolutionary potential of Amur tigers facing environmental changes. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Linking microbial diversity and functionality of arctic glacial surface habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lutz, Stefanie; Anesio, Alexandre M; Edwards, Arwyn; Benning, Liane G

    2017-02-01

    Distinct microbial habitats on glacial surfaces are dominated by snow and ice algae, which are the critical players and the dominant primary colonisers and net producers during the melt season. Here for the first time we have evaluated the role of these algae in association with the full microbial community composition (i.e., algae, bacteria, archaea) in distinct surface habitats and on 12 glaciers and permanent snow fields in Svalbard and Arctic Sweden. We cross-correlated these data with the analyses of specific metabolites such as fatty acids and pigments, and a full suite of potential critical physico-chemical parameters including major and minor nutrients, and trace metals. It has been shown that correlations between single algal species, metabolites, and specific geochemical parameters can be used to unravel mixed metabolic signals in complex communities, further assign them to single species and infer their functionality. The data also clearly show that the production of metabolites in snow and ice algae is driven mainly by nitrogen and less so by phosphorus limitation. This is especially important for the synthesis of secondary carotenoids, which cause a darkening of glacial surfaces leading to a decrease in surface albedo and eventually higher melting rates. © 2016 The Authors. Environmental Microbiology published by Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Seedling stage strategies as a means of habitat specialization in herbaceous plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    ten Brink, Dirk-Jan; Bruun, Hans Henrik

    2011-01-01

    The regeneration niche has been little investigated in studies of community assembly and plant distribution. We examined adaptive associations between seedling traits and habitat specialization. Two habitat contrasts were investigated across several evolutionary lineages of angiosperms: species...... specialized to forest vs. open habitats and to dry vs. wet habitats. We also tested whether effects of shade and drought vary independently or, alternatively, if shade may amplify effects on drought-stressed plants. Seedling response in terms of growth rate, height, slenderness, specific leaf area (SLA......) and degree of elongation (longest internode; petiole or leaf-sheath depending on species' morphology) to light and watering treatments was assessed. We used a factorial design involving three light regimes and two watering frequencies. The open-shaded habitat contrast and the dry-wet habitat contrast were...

  1. Comparing the plant diversity between artificial forest and nature growth forest in a giant panda habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Dongwei; Wang, Xiaorong; Li, Shuang; Li, Junqing

    2017-06-15

    Artificial restoration is an important way to restore forests, but little is known about its effect on the habitat restoration of the giant panda. In the present study, we investigated the characteristics of artificial forest in the Wanglang Nature Reserve to determine whether through succession it has formed a suitable habitat for the giant panda. We compared artificial forest characteristics with those of natural habitat used by the giant panda. We found that the dominant tree species in artificial forest differed from those in the natural habitat. The artificial forest had lower plant species richness and diversity in the tree and shrub layers than did the latter, and its community structure was characterized by smaller tree and bamboo sizes, and fewer and lower bamboo clumps, but more trees and larger shrub sizes. The typical community collocation of artificial forest was a "Picea asperata + no-bamboo" model, which differs starkly from the giant panda's natural habitat. After several years of restoration, the artificial forest has failed to become a suitable habitat for the giant panda. Therefore, a simple way of planting individual trees cannot restore giant panda habitat; instead, habitat restoration should be based on the habitat requirements of the giant panda.

  2. Temporal bird community dynamics are strongly affected by landscape fragmentation in a Central American tropical forest region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blandón, A.C.; Perelman, S.B.; Ramírez, M.; López, A.; Javier, O.; Robbins, Chandler S.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat loss and fragmentation are considered the main causes of species extinctions, particularly in tropical ecosystems. The objective of this work was to evaluate the temporal dynamics of tropical bird communities in landscapes with different levels of fragmentation in eastern Guatemala. We evaluated five bird community dynamic parameters for forest specialists and generalists: (1) species extinction, (2) species turnover, (3) number of colonizing species, (4) relative species richness, and (5) a homogeneity index. For each of 24 landscapes, community dynamic parameters were estimated from bird point count data, for the 1998–1999 and 2008–2009 periods, accounting for species’ detection probability. Forest specialists had higher extinction rates and a smaller number of colonizing species in landscapes with higher fragmentation, thus having lower species richness in both time periods. Alternatively, forest generalists elicited a completely different pattern, showing a curvilinear association to forest fragmentation for most parameters. Thus, greater community dynamism for forest generalists was shown in landscapes with intermediate levels of fragmentation. Our study supports general theory regarding the expected negative effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on the temporal dynamics of biotic communities, particularly for forest specialists, providing strong evidence from understudied tropical bird communities.

  3. Influence of Mowing Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis on Winter Habitat for Wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Kirk W.; Bates, Jonathan D.; Johnson, Dustin D.; Nafus, Aleta M.

    2009-07-01

    Mowing is commonly implemented to Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis (Beetle & A. Young) S.L. Welsh (Wyoming big sagebrush) plant communities to improve wildlife habitat, increase forage production for livestock, and create fuel breaks for fire suppression. However, information detailing the influence of mowing on winter habitat for wildlife is lacking. This information is crucial because many wildlife species depended on A. tridentata spp. wyomingensis plant communities for winter habitat and consume significant quantities of Artemisia during this time . Furthermore, information is generally limited describing the recovery of A. tridentata spp. wyomingensis to mowing and the impacts of mowing on stand structure. Stand characteristics and Artemisia leaf tissue crude protein (CP), acid detergent fiber (ADF), and neutral detergent fiber (NDF) concentrations were measured in midwinter on 0-, 2-, 4-, and 6-year-old fall-applied mechanical (mowed at 20 cm height) treatments and compared to adjacent untreated (control) areas. Mowing compared to the control decreased Artemisia cover, density, canopy volume, canopy elliptical area, and height ( P < 0.05), but all characteristics were recovering ( P < 0.05). Mowing A. tridentata spp. wyomingensis plant communities slightly increases the nutritional quality of Artemisia leaves ( P < 0.05), but it simultaneously results in up to 20 years of decrease in Artemisia structural characteristics. Because of the large reduction in A. tridentata spp. wyomingensis for potentially 20 years following mowing, mowing should not be applied in Artemisia facultative and obligate wildlife winter habitat. Considering the decline in A. tridentata spp. wyomingensis-dominated landscapes, we caution against mowing these communities.

  4. Habitat features and predictive habitat modeling for the Colorado chipmunk in southern New Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivieccio, M.; Thompson, B.C.; Gould, W.R.; Boykin, K.G.

    2003-01-01

    Two subspecies of Colorado chipmunk (state threatened and federal species of concern) occur in southern New Mexico: Tamias quadrivittatus australis in the Organ Mountains and T. q. oscuraensis in the Oscura Mountains. We developed a GIS model of potentially suitable habitat based on vegetation and elevation features, evaluated site classifications of the GIS model, and determined vegetation and terrain features associated with chipmunk occurrence. We compared GIS model classifications with actual vegetation and elevation features measured at 37 sites. At 60 sites we measured 18 habitat variables regarding slope, aspect, tree species, shrub species, and ground cover. We used logistic regression to analyze habitat variables associated with chipmunk presence/absence. All (100%) 37 sample sites (28 predicted suitable, 9 predicted unsuitable) were classified correctly by the GIS model regarding elevation and vegetation. For 28 sites predicted suitable by the GIS model, 18 sites (64%) appeared visually suitable based on habitat variables selected from logistic regression analyses, of which 10 sites (36%) were specifically predicted as suitable habitat via logistic regression. We detected chipmunks at 70% of sites deemed suitable via the logistic regression models. Shrub cover, tree density, plant proximity, presence of logs, and presence of rock outcrop were retained in the logistic model for the Oscura Mountains; litter, shrub cover, and grass cover were retained in the logistic model for the Organ Mountains. Evaluation of predictive models illustrates the need for multi-stage analyses to best judge performance. Microhabitat analyses indicate prospective needs for different management strategies between the subspecies. Sensitivities of each population of the Colorado chipmunk to natural and prescribed fire suggest that partial burnings of areas inhabited by Colorado chipmunks in southern New Mexico may be beneficial. These partial burnings may later help avoid a fire

  5. Population Dynamic of Dendronephthya sp.-Associated Bacteria in Natural and Artificial Habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SUSAN SOKA

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Dendronephthya sp. is a soft coral that has huge distribution starting from Indopacific, Tonga, Solomon Islands to Great Barrier Reef in Australia. However, this soft corals survive only in short period after cultivation in artificial habitat (aquarium. Recent study showed that the soft coral Dendronephtya sp. has an association or symbiotic relationship with several bacteria, commonly known as coral associated bacteria (CAB. In this study, we compared the population dynamic of Dendronephthya sp.-associated bacteria in natural and artificial habitat, resulting different bacterial community profiles using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP analysis of bacterial community DNA. There were 15 main classes of bacterial population identified along with uncultured microorganism, uncultured organism, uncultured bacteria and unidentified organism. Members of Actinobacteria, Arthrobacteria, Chlorobia, Caldilineae, -proteobacteria and Proteobacteria were predicted to give contributions in the survival ability of both Dendronephthya sp. The cultivation of soft corals after 2 weeks in artificial habitat increases bacterial population similarity on 2 different samples by 10%. Bacterial population similarity in artificial habitat would increase along with the longer cultivation time of soft corals.

  6. Population Dynamic of Dendronephthya sp.-Associated Bacteria in Natural and Artificial Habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SUSAN SOKA

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Dendronephthya sp. is a soft coral that has huge distribution starting from Indopacific, Tonga, Solomon Islands to Great Barrier Reef in Australia. However, this soft corals survive only in short period after cultivation in artificial habitat (aquarium. Recent study showed that the soft coral Dendronephtya sp. has an association or symbiotic relationship with several bacteria, commonly known as coral associated bacteria (CAB. In this study, we compared the population dynamic of Dendronephthya sp.-associated bacteria in natural and artificial habitat, resulting different bacterial community profiles using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP analysis of bacterial community DNA. There were 15 main classes of bacterial population identified along with uncultured microorganism, uncultured organism, uncultured bacteria and unidentified organism. Members of Actinobacteria, Arthrobacteria, Chlorobia, Caldilineae, Δ-proteobacteria and Proteobacteria were predicted to give contributions in the survival ability of both Dendronephthya sp. The cultivation of soft corals after 2 weeks in artificial habitat increases bacterial population similarity on 2 different samples by 10%. Bacterial population similarity in artificial habitat would increase along with the longer cultivation time of soft corals.

  7. Human-Induced Disturbance Alters Pollinator Communities in Tropical Mountain Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Schleuning

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Mountain forest ecosystems in the Andes are threatened by deforestation. Increasing fire frequencies lead to fire-degraded habitats that are often characterized by a persistent fern-dominated vegetation. Little is known about the consequences of these drastic changes in habitat conditions for pollinator communities. In a rapid diversity assessment, we collected individuals of two major groups of insect pollinators (bees and butterflies/moths with pan traps and compared pollinator diversities in a spatial block design between forest interior, forest edge and adjacent fire-degraded habitats at eight sites in the Bolivian Andes. We found that bee species richness and abundance were significantly higher in fire-degraded habitats than in forest habitats, whereas species richness and abundance of butterflies/moths increased towards the forests interior. Species turnover between forest and fire-degraded habitats was very high for both pollinator groups and was reflected by an increase in the body size of bee species and a decrease in the body size of butterfly/moth species in fire-degraded habitats. We conclude that deforestation by frequent fires has profound impacts on the diversity and composition of pollinator communities. Our tentative findings suggest shifts towards bee-dominated pollinator communities in fire-degraded habitats that may have important feedbacks on the regenerating communities of insect-pollinated plant species.

  8. Mapping and modelling the habitat of giant pandas in Foping Nature Reserve, China

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, X.

    2001-01-01

    The fact that only about 1000 giant pandas and 29500 km2 of panda habitat are left in the west part of China makes it an urgent issue to save this endangered animal species and protect its habitat. For effective conservation of the giant panda and its habitat, a thorough evaluation of panda habitat and panda-habitat relationship based on each individual panda nature reserve is necessary and important. Mapping has been an effective approach for wildlife habitat evaluation and monitoring. There...

  9. Zonation and habitat selection on a reclaimed coastal foredune

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1988-11-08

    Nov 8, 1988 ... in this study were vegetation cover, plant community structure and sand movement. ... The arthropod orders were less susceptible to zonation and strict habitat ... relationships which permit species to coexist and optimal.

  10. Habitat preferences and conservation threats to Black-necked Cranes wintering in Bhutan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Namgay, Rinchen; Wangchuk, Sangay

    2016-01-01

    Black-necked Crane (Grus nigricollis) is a vulnerable Red list species whose populations are declining. However, little is known about Black-necked Cranes' habitat requirements or the causes of their population decline. We identified Black-necked Cranes' winter roost and foraging preferences of Black-necked Cranes in Bhutan during the winter of 2013-2014. Black-necked Cranes' roosts were recorded using Garmin GPSmap 60CSx, while foraging preferences and threats to the birds were identified based on a survey of household heads (n = 107) residing within a 3 km radius of roost sites. We grouped the threats identified by the communities into four major categories, viz. biological, social, political and natural threats based on the relevance. Of the four major threats, communities residing within the roosting and foraging habitat of the Black-necked Crane reported biological threat as major. Biological threats as reported by communities include loss of habitat, food shortage and competition from other animals. We recommend the present roosting areas be designated as part of the conservation areas for Black-necked Crane wintering in Bumthang district. In addition to preserving these areas, government should also encourage farming in foraging habitats of Black-necked Crane, because they mainly feed on barley, wheat, paddy, potatoes and buckwheat, besides roots, tubers and insects in the wetlands.

  11. Subsurface microbial habitats on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, P. J.; Mckay, C. P.

    1991-01-01

    We developed scenarios for shallow and deep subsurface cryptic niches for microbial life on Mars. Such habitats could have considerably prolonged the persistence of life on Mars as surface conditions became increasingly inhospitable. The scenarios rely on geothermal hot spots existing below the near or deep subsurface of Mars. Recent advances in the comparatively new field of deep subsurface microbiology have revealed previously unsuspected rich aerobic and anaerobic microbal communities far below the surface of the Earth. Such habitats, protected from the grim surface conditions on Mars, could receive warmth from below and maintain water in its liquid state. In addition, geothermally or volcanically reduced gases percolating from below through a microbiologically active zone could provide the reducing power needed for a closed or semi-closed microbial ecosystem to thrive.

  12. Concurrent assessment of fish and habitat in warmwater streams in Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quist, M.C.; Hubert, W.A.; Rahel, F.J.

    2006-01-01

    Fisheries research and management in North America have focused largely on sport fishes, but native non-game fishes have attracted increased attention due to their declines. The Warmwater Stream Assessment (WSA) was developed to evaluate simultaneously both fish and habitat in Wyoming streams by a process that includes three major components: (1) stream-reach selection and accumulation of existing information, (2) fish and habitat sampling and (3) summarisation and evaluation of fish and habitat information. Fish are sampled by electric fishing or seining and habitat is measured at reach and channel-unit (i.e. pool, run, riffle, side channel, or backwater) scales. Fish and habitat data are subsequently summarised using a data-matrix approach. Hierarchical decision trees are used to assess critical habitat requirements for each fish species expected or found in the reach. Combined measurements of available habitat and the ecology of individual species contribute to the evaluation of the observed fish assemblage. The WSA incorporates knowledge of the fish assemblage and habitat features to enable inferences of factors likely influencing both the fish assemblage and their habitat. The WSA was developed for warmwater streams in Wyoming, but its philosophy, process and conceptual basis may be applied to environmental assessments in other geographical areas. ?? 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  13. Does fragmentation of Urtica habitats affect phytophagous and predatory insects differentially?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zabel, Jörg; Tscharntke, Teja

    1998-09-01

    Effects of habitat fragmentation on the insect community of stinging nettle (Urtica dioica L.) were studied, using 32 natural nettle patches of different area and degree of isolation in an agricultural landscape. Habitat fragmentation reduced the species richness of Heteroptera, Auchenorrhyncha, and Coleoptera, and the abundance of populations. Habitat isolation and area reduction did not affect all insect species equally. Monophagous herbivores had a higher probability of absence from small patches than all (monophagous and polyphagous) herbivore species, and the percentage of monophagous herbivores increased with habitat area. Abundance and population variability of species were negatively correlated and could both be used as a predictor of the percentage of occupied habitats. Species richness of herbivores correlated (positively) with habitat area, while species richness of predators correlated (negatively) with habitat isolation. In logistic regressions, the probability of absence of monophagous herbivores from habitat patches could only be explained by habitat area (in 4 out of 10 species) and predator absence probability only by habitat isolation (in 3 out of 14 species). Presumably because of the instability of higher-trophic-level populations and dispersal limitation, predators were more affected by habitat isolation than herbivores, while they did not differ from herbivore populations with respect to abundance or variability. Thus increasing habitat connectivity in the agricultural landscape should primarily promote predator populations.

  14. Salmon River Habitat Enhancement, 1984 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Konopacky, Richard C.

    1986-04-01

    This report has four volumes: a Tribal project annual report (Part 1) and three reports (Parts 2, 3, and 4) prepared for the Tribes by their engineering subcontractor. The Tribal project annual report contains reports for four subprojects within Project 83-359. Subproject I involved habitat and fish inventories in Bear Valley Creek, Valley County, Idaho that will be used to evaluate responses to ongoing habitat enhancement. Subproject II is the coordination/planning activities of the Project Leader in relation to other BPA-funded habitat enhancement projects that have or will occur within the traditional Treaty (Fort Bridger Treaty of 1868) fishing areas of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes, Fort Hall Reservation, Idaho. Subproject III involved habitat and fish inventories (pretreatment) and habitat problem identification on the Yankee Fork of the Salmon River (including Jordan Creek). Subproject IV during 1985 involved habitat problem identification in the East Fork of the Salmon River and habitat and fish inventories (pretreatment) in Herd Creek, a tributary to the East Fork.

  15. Soil Fertility, Salinity and Nematode Diversity Influenced by Tamarix ramosissima in Different Habitats in an Arid Desert Oasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yong-zhong, Su; Xue-fen, Wang; Rong, Yang; Xiao, Yang; Wen-jie, Liu

    2012-08-01

    The aim of this paper was to assess the influence of tamarisk shrubs on soil fertility, salinity and nematode communities in various habitats located in an arid desert-oasis region in northwest China. Three habitats were studied: sand dune, riparian zone and saline meadow, where tamarisk shrubs have been established in recent decades in order to vegetation restoration used as desertification control and saline land rehabilitation projects and become the dominant plant community. The parameters measured include soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen, available phosphorus (P) and potassium (K), pH, salt component, and nematode community characteristics. Enrichment ratios (a comparison of the soil measurements between soils under canopy and in the open interspaces) for soil nutrients and salinity were used to evaluate fertility and salinity islands underneath the tamarisk shrubs. The soil nematode community was used as a biological indicator of soil condition. SOC and available P and K were higher beneath the plant canopy than in the open interspaces outside that canopy. The enrichment ratios for SOC and nutrients were highest for the sand dune habitat and tamarisk shrubs clearly created islands of greater salinity under the canopies. Nematode abundance per 100 g dry soil varied considerably between the locations and habitats, with the highest abundance found in sand dune and the lowest in saline meadow. A significantly higher nematode abundance and a lower trophic diversity were found in soils under the canopy compared to the soils in the open interspaces. With the exception of saline meadow, the abundance of bacterivores increased and fungivores decreased under the canopy relative to the open interspaces, and bacterivores dominated under the canopies in the sand dune and riparian habitats. The enrichment ratios for salinity were higher than for fertility, suggesting that improved soil fertility can not limit the impact of salinization beneath tamarisk shrubs. The

  16. Submarine canyons represent an essential habitat network for krill hotspots in a Large Marine Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santora, Jarrod A; Zeno, Ramona; Dorman, Jeffrey G; Sydeman, William J

    2018-05-15

    Submarine canyon systems are ubiquitous features of marine ecosystems, known to support high levels of biodiversity. Canyons may be important to benthic-pelagic ecosystem coupling, but their role in concentrating plankton and structuring pelagic communities is not well known. We hypothesize that at the scale of a large marine ecosystem, canyons provide a critical habitat network, which maintain energy flow and trophic interactions. We evaluate canyon characteristics relative to the distribution and abundance of krill, critically important prey in the California Current Ecosystem. Using a geological database, we conducted a census of canyon locations, evaluated their dimensions, and quantified functional relationships with krill hotspots (i.e., sites of persistently elevated abundance) derived from hydro-acoustic surveys. We found that 76% of krill hotspots occurred within and adjacent to canyons. Most krill hotspots were associated with large shelf-incising canyons. Krill hotspots and canyon dimensions displayed similar coherence as a function of latitude and indicate a potential regional habitat network. The latitudinal migration of many fish, seabirds and mammals may be enhanced by using this canyon-krill network to maintain foraging opportunities. Biogeographic assessments and predictions of krill and krill-predator distributions under climate change may be improved by accounting for canyons in habitat models.

  17. Patterns and drivers of fish community assembly in a large marine ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pécuchet, Lauréne; Törnroos, Anna; Lindegren, Martin

    2016-01-01

    . To determine assembly rules, ecological similarities of co-occurring species are often investigated. This can be evaluated using trait-based indices summarizing the species’ niches in a given community. In order to investigate the underlying processes shaping community assembly in marine ecosystems, we...... investigated the patterns and drivers of fish community composition in the Baltic Sea, a semi-enclosed sea characterized by a pronounced environmental gradient. Our results showed a marked decline in species- and functional richness, largely explained by decreasing salinities. In addition, habitat complexity...

  18. Selection indicates preference in diverse habitats: a ground-nesting bird (Charadrius melodus using reservoir shoreline.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Anteau

    Full Text Available Animals use proximate cues to select resources that maximize individual fitness. When animals have a diverse array of available habitats, those selected could give insights into true habitat preferences. Since the construction of the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River in North Dakota, Lake Sakakawea (SAK has become an important breeding area for federally threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus; hereafter plovers. We used conditional logistic regression to examine nest-site selection at fine scales (1, 3, and 10 m during summers 2006-2009 by comparing characteristics at 351 nests to those of 668 random sites within nesting territories. Plovers selected sites (1 m(2 that were lower than unused random sites, increasing the risk of nest inundation. Plovers selected nest sites that were flat, had little silt, and at least 1 cobble; they also selected for 3-m radius nest areas that were relatively flat and devoid of vegetation and litter. Ninety percent of nests had <38% coverage of silt and <10% slope at the site, and <15% coverage of vegetation or litter and <31% slope within the 3-m radius. Gravel was selected for at nest sites (11% median, but against in the area 10-m from the nest, suggesting plovers select for patches or strips of gravel. Although elevation is rarely evaluated in studies of ground-nesting birds, our results underscore its importance in habitat-selection studies. Relative to where plovers historically nested, habitat at SAK has more diverse topography, substrate composition, vegetation communities, and greater water-level fluctuations. Accordingly, our results provide an example of how habitat-selection results can be interpreted as habitat preferences because they are not influenced by desired habitats being scarce or absent. Further, our results will be useful for directing habitat conservation for plovers and interpreting other habitat-selection studies.

  19. Ghost of habitat past: historic habitat affects the contemporary distribution of giant garter snakes in a modified landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halstead, Brian J.; Wylie, Glenn D.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2014-01-01

    Historic habitat conditions can affect contemporary communities and populations, but most studies of historic habitat are based on the reduction in habitat extent or connectivity. Little is known about the effects of historic habitat on contemporary species distributions when historic habitat has been nearly completely removed, but species persist in a highly altered landscape. More than 93% of the historic wetlands in the Central Valley of California, USA, have been drained and converted to agricultural and other uses, but agricultural wetlands, such as rice and its supporting infrastructure of canals, allow some species to persist. Little is known about the distribution of giant garter snakes Thamnophis gigas, a rare aquatic snake species inhabiting this predominantly agricultural landscape, or the variables that affect where this species occurs. We used occupancy modeling to examine the distribution of giant garter snakes at the landscape scale in the Sacramento Valley (northern portion of the Central Valley) of California, with an emphasis on the relative strength of historic and contemporary variables (landscape-scale habitat, local microhabitat, vegetation composition and relative prey counts) for predicting giant garter snake occurrence. Proximity to historic marsh best explained variation in the probability of occurrence of giant garter snakes at the landscape scale, with greater probability of occurrence near historic marsh. We suspect that the importance of distance to historic marsh represents dispersal limitations of giant garter snakes. These results suggest that preserving and restoring areas near historic marsh, and minimizing activities that reduce the extent of marsh or marsh-like (e.g. rice agriculture, canal) habitats near historic marsh may be advantageous to giant garter snakes.

  20. Reproduction of Amorpha canescens (Fabaceae) and diversity of its bee community in a fragmented landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slagle, Malinda W; Hendrix, Stephen D

    2009-10-01

    Loss of insect pollinators due to habitat fragmentation often results in negative effects on plant reproduction, but few studies have simultaneously examined variation in the bee community, site characteristics and plant community characteristics to evaluate their relative effects on plant reproduction in a fragmented habitat. We examined the reproduction of a common tallgrass prairie forb, Amorpha canescens (Fabaceae), in large (>40 ha) and small (level characteristics can influence the bee community visiting any one species. Site size, a common predictor of plant reproduction in fragmented habitats did not contribute to any models of fruit set and was only marginally related to bee diversity one year. Andrena quintilis, one of the three oligolectic bee species associated with A. canescens, was abundant at all sites, suggesting it has not been significantly affected by fragmentation. Our results show that the diversity of bees visiting A. canescens is important for maintaining fruit set and that bee visitation is still sufficient for at least some fruit set in all populations, suggesting these small remnants act as floral resource oases for bees in landscapes often dominated by agriculture.

  1. RESEARCH: Effects of Recent Volcanic Eruptions on Aquatic Habitat in the Drift River, Alaska, USA: Implications at Other Cook Inlet Region Volcanoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DORAVA; MILNER

    1999-02-01

    / Numerous drainages supporting productive salmon habitat are surrounded by active volcanoes on the west side of Cook Inlet in south-central Alaska. Eruptions have caused massive quantities of flowing water and sediment to enter the river channels emanating from glaciers and snowfields on these volcanoes. Extensive damage to riparian and aquatic habitat has commonly resulted, and benthic macroinvertebrate and salmonid communities can be affected. Because of the economic importance of Alaska's fisheries, detrimental effects on salmonid habitat can have significant economic implications. The Drift River drains glaciers on the northern and eastern flanks of Redoubt Volcano. During and following eruptions in 1989-1990, severe physical disturbances to the habitat features of the river adversely affected the fishery. Frequent eruptions at other Cook Inlet region volcanoes exemplify the potential effects of volcanic activity on Alaska's important commercial, sport, and subsistence fisheries. Few studies have documented the recovery of aquatic habitat following volcanic eruptions. The eruptions of Redoubt Volcano in 1989-1990 offered an opportunity to examine the recovery of the macroinvertebrate community. Macroinvertebrate community composition and structure in the Drift River were similar in both undisturbed and recently disturbed sites. Additionally, macroinvertebrate samples from sites in nearby undisturbed streams were highly similar to those from some Drift River sites. This similarity and the agreement between the Drift River macroinvertebrate community composition and that predicted by a qualitative model of typical macroinvertebrate communities in glacier-fed rivers indicate that the Drift River macroinvertebrate community is recovering five years after the disturbances associated with the most recent eruptions of Redoubt Volcano. KEY WORDS: Aquatic habitat; Volcanoes; Lahars; Lahar-runout flows; Macroinvertebrates; Community structure; Community composition

  2. Greater sage-grouse winter habitat use on the eastern edge of their range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, Christopher C.; Rumble, Mark A.; Grovenburg, Troy W.; Kaczor, Nicholas W.; Klaver, Robert W.; Herman-Brunson, Katie M.; Jenks, Jonathan A.; Jensen, Kent C.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) at the western edge of the Dakotas occur in the transition zone between sagebrush and grassland communities. These mixed sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) and grasslands differ from those habitats that comprise the central portions of the sage-grouse range; yet, no information is available on winter habitat selection within this region of their distribution. We evaluated factors influencing greater sage-grouse winter habitat use in North Dakota during 2005–2006 and 2006–2007 and in South Dakota during 2006–2007 and 2007–2008. We captured and radio-marked 97 breeding-age females and 54 breeding-age males from 2005 to 2007 and quantified habitat selection for 98 of these birds that were alive during winter. We collected habitat measurements at 340 (177 ND, 163 SD) sage-grouse use sites and 680 random (340 each at 250 m and 500 m from locations) dependent sites. Use sites differed from random sites with greater percent sagebrush cover (14.75% use vs. 7.29% random; P 2 use vs. 0.94 plants/m2 random; P ≤ 0.001), but lesser percent grass cover (11.76% use vs. 16.01% random; P ≤ 0.001) and litter cover (4.34% use vs. 5.55% random; P = 0.001) and lower sagebrush height (20.02 cm use vs. 21.35 cm random; P = 0.13) and grass height (21.47 cm use vs. 23.21 cm random; P = 0.15). We used conditional logistic regression to estimate winter habitat selection by sage-grouse on continuous scales. The model sagebrush cover + sagebrush height + sagebrush cover × sagebrush height (wi = 0.60) was the most supported of the 13 models we considered, indicating that percent sagebrush cover strongly influenced selection. Logistic odds ratios indicated that the probability of selection by sage-grouse increased by 1.867 for every 1% increase in sagebrush cover (95% CI = 1.627–2.141) and by 1.041 for every 1 cm increase in sagebrush height (95% CI = 1.002–1.082). The

  3. Floral resources and habitat affect the composition of hummingbirds at the local scale in tropical mountaintops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LC Rodrigues

    Full Text Available Hummingbird communities tend to respond to variation in resources, having a positive relationship between abundance and diversity of food resources and the abundance and/or diversity of hummingbirds. Here we examined the influence of floral resource availability, as well as seasonality and type of habitat on the composition of hummingbird species. The study was carried out in two habitats of eastern Brazilian mountaintops. A gradient representative of the structure of hummingbird community, based on species composition, was obtained by the ordination of samples using the method of non-metric multidimensional scaling. The composition of hummingbird species was influenced by the type of habitat and floral resource availability, but not by seasonality. Hummingbird communities differ between habitats mainly due to the relative abundance of hummingbird species. The variation in composition of hummingbird species with the variation in floral resource availability may be related to differences in feeding habits of hummingbirds. Hummingbird species with the longest bills visited higher proportions of ornithophilous species, while hummingbirds with shorter bills visited higher proportions of non-ornithophilous species. The results demonstrate that at local-scale the composition of hummingbird species is affected by the type of habitat and floral resources availability, but not by seasonality.

  4. Floral resources and habitat affect the composition of hummingbirds at the local scale in tropical mountaintops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, L C; Rodrigues, M

    2015-01-01

    Hummingbird communities tend to respond to variation in resources, having a positive relationship between abundance and diversity of food resources and the abundance and/or diversity of hummingbirds. Here we examined the influence of floral resource availability, as well as seasonality and type of habitat on the composition of hummingbird species. The study was carried out in two habitats of eastern Brazilian mountaintops. A gradient representative of the structure of hummingbird community, based on species composition, was obtained by the ordination of samples using the method of non-metric multidimensional scaling. The composition of hummingbird species was influenced by the type of habitat and floral resource availability, but not by seasonality. Hummingbird communities differ between habitats mainly due to the relative abundance of hummingbird species. The variation in composition of hummingbird species with the variation in floral resource availability may be related to differences in feeding habits of hummingbirds. Hummingbird species with the longest bills visited higher proportions of ornithophilous species, while hummingbirds with shorter bills visited higher proportions of non-ornithophilous species. The results demonstrate that at local-scale the composition of hummingbird species is affected by the type of habitat and floral resources availability, but not by seasonality.

  5. Effects of land use on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities in Estonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sepp, Siim-Kaarel; Jairus, Teele; Vasar, Martti; Zobel, Martin; Öpik, Maarja

    2018-04-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal communities vary across habitat types, as well as across different land use types. Most relevant research, however, has focused on agricultural or other severely human-impacted ecosystems. Here, we compared AM fungal communities across six habitat types: calcareous grassland, overgrown ungrazed calcareous grassland, wooded meadow, farmyard lawn, boreonemoral forest, and boreonemoral forest clear-cut, exhibiting contrasting modes of land use. AM fungi in the roots of a single host plant species, Prunella vulgaris, and in its rhizosphere soil were identified using 454-sequencing from a total of 103 samples from 12 sites in Estonia. Mean AM fungal taxon richness per sample did not differ among habitats. AM fungal community composition, however, was significantly different among habitat types. Both abandonment and land use intensification (clearcutting; trampling combined with frequent mowing) changed AM fungal community composition. The AM fungal communities in different habitat types were most similar in the roots of the single host plant species and most distinct in soil samples, suggesting a non-random pattern in host-fungal taxon interactions. The results show that AM fungal taxon composition is driven by habitat type and land use intensity, while the plant host may act as an additional filter between the available and realized AM fungal species pool.

  6. Effects of the “Run-of-River” Hydro Scheme on Macroinvertebrate Communities and Habitat Conditions in a Mountain River of Northeastern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haoran Wang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of this study was to quantify the impacts of the run of river (ROR scheme on the instream habitat and macroinvertebrate community. We sampled the macroinvertebrate assemblages and collected the habitat variables above and below an ROR hydropower plant: Aotou plant in the Hailang River, China. The effects of the ROR scheme on habitat conditions were examined using regulation-related variables, most of which, particularly the hydrological variables and substrate composition, presented spatial variations along the downstream direction, contributing to heterogeneous conditions between reaches. The macroinvertebrate richness, the density and the diversity metrics showed significant decreases in the “depleted” reach compared with the upper and lower reaches. Approximately 75% of reach-averaged densities and 50% of taxa richness suffered decreases in the “depleted” reach compared with the upper reach. Furthermore, functional feeding groups also showed distinct site differences along the channel. The relative abundance of both collector-gatherers and the scrapers reduced considerably at the “depleted” sites, particularly at the site immediately downstream of the weir. The total variance in the the functional feeding group (FFG data explained by Canonical correlation analysis (CCA was more than 81.4% and the high-loadings factors were depth, flow velocity, DO and substrate composition. We demonstrated that flow diversion at the 75% level and an in-channel barrier, due to the ROR scheme, are likely to lead to poor habitat conditions and decrease both the abundance and the diversity of macroinvertebrates in reaches influenced by water diversion.

  7. Beneficial Insect Borders Provide Northern Bobwhite Brood Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moorman, Christopher E.; Plush, Charles J.; Orr, David B.; Reberg-Horton, Chris

    2013-01-01

    Strips of fallow vegetation along cropland borders are an effective strategy for providing brood habitat for declining populations of upland game birds (Order: Galliformes), including northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus), but fallow borders lack nectar-producing vegetation needed to sustain many beneficial insect populations (e.g., crop pest predators, parasitoids, and pollinator species). Planted borders that contain mixes of prairie flowers and grasses are designed to harbor more diverse arthropod communities, but the relative value of these borders as brood habitat is unknown. We used groups of six human-imprinted northern bobwhite chicks as a bioassay for comparing four different border treatments (planted native grass and prairie flowers, planted prairie flowers only, fallow vegetation, or mowed vegetation) as northern bobwhite brood habitat from June-August 2009 and 2010. All field border treatments were established around nine organic crop fields. Groups of chicks were led through borders for 30-min foraging trials and immediately euthanized, and eaten arthropods in crops and gizzards were measured to calculate a foraging rate for each border treatment. We estimated arthropod prey availability within each border treatment using a modified blower-vac to sample arthropods at the vegetation strata where chicks foraged. Foraging rate did not differ among border treatments in 2009 or 2010. Total arthropod prey densities calculated from blower-vac samples did not differ among border treatments in 2009 or 2010. Our results showed plant communities established to attract beneficial insects should maximize the biodiversity potential of field border establishment by providing habitat for beneficial insects and young upland game birds. PMID:24376759

  8. Science evaluation of the environmental impact statement for the lower Churchill hydroelectric generation project to identify deficiencies with respect to fish and fish habitat

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clarke, K.

    2009-01-01

    This report evaluated an environmental impact statement (EIS) submitted by a company proposing to develop a hydroelectric generation project in the lower Churchill River in Labrador. Construction of the facilities will alter the aquatic environment of the river as well as the receiving environment of lakes. The alterations are expected to have an impact on fish and fish habitats. The study evaluated the methods used to describe and predict impacts in the aquatic environment and examined models used for predictions in order to assess uncertainty levels. Results of the evaluation demonstrated that additional efforts are needed to document local knowledge of fish use and fish habitat, and that the magnitude of expected changes to fish habitat must be considered relative to the loss of fish habitat. The study also highlighted areas within the EIS that will require further clarification. A number of the studies used in the EIS had small sample sizes that increased the uncertainty of predictions made using the data. Uncertainties related to potential changes in flushing rates and morphological features was also needed. The impact of direct fish mortality from turbine operations was not addressed in a population context, and further information is needed to evaluate potential project-related effects on a species-by-species basis. 3 refs., 4 tabs.

  9. Evaluating Community-Based Participatory Research to Improve Community-Partnered Science and Community Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hicks, Sarah; Duran, Bonnie; Wallerstein, Nina; Avila, Magdalena; Belone, Lorenda; Lucero, Julie; Magarati, Maya; Mainer, Elana; Martin, Diane; Muhammad, Michael; Oetzel, John; Pearson, Cynthia; Sahota, Puneet; Simonds, Vanessa; Sussman, Andrew; Tafoya, Greg; Hat, Emily White

    2013-01-01

    Background Since 2007, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Policy Research Center (PRC) has partnered with the Universities of New Mexico and Washington to study the science of community-based participatory research (CBPR). Our goal is to identify facilitators and barriers to effective community–academic partnerships in American Indian and other communities, which face health disparities. Objectives We have described herein the scientific design of our National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded study (2009–2013) and lessons learned by having a strong community partner leading the research efforts. Methods The research team is implementing a mixed-methods study involving a survey of principal investigators (PIs) and partners across the nation and in-depth case studies of CBPR projects. Results We present preliminary findings on methods and measures for community-engaged research and eight lessons learned thus far regarding partnership evaluation, advisory councils, historical trust, research capacity development of community partner, advocacy, honoring each other, messaging, and funding. Conclusions Study methodologies and lessons learned can help community–academic research partnerships translate research in communities. PMID:22982842

  10. Evaluating community-based public health leadership training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceraso, Marion; Gruebling, Kirsten; Layde, Peter; Remington, Patrick; Hill, Barbara; Morzinski, Jeffrey; Ore, Peggy

    2011-01-01

    Addressing the nation's increasingly complex public health challenges will require more effective multisector collaboration and stronger public health leadership. In 2005, the Healthy Wisconsin Leadership Institute launched an annual, year-long intensive "community teams" program. The goal of this program is to develop collaborative leadership and public health skills among Wisconsin-based multisectoral teams mobilizing their communities to improve public health. To measure the scope of participation and program impacts on individual learning and practice, including application of new knowledge and collective achievements of teams on coalition and short-term community outcomes. End-of-year participant program evaluations and follow-up telephone interviews with participants 20 months after program completion. Community-based public health leadership training program. Sixty-eight participants in the Community Teams Program during the years 2006 to 2007 and 2007 to 2008. Professional diversity of program participants; individual learning and practice, including application of new knowledge; and collective achievements of teams, including coalition and short-term community outcomes. Participants in the Community Teams Program represent a diversity of sectors, including nonprofit, governmental, academic, business, and local public health. Participation increased knowledge across all public health and leadership competency areas covered in the program. Participating teams reported outcomes, including increased engagement of community leadership, expansion of preventive services, increased media coverage, strengthened community coalitions, and increased grant funding. Evaluation of this community-based approach to public health leadership training has shown it to be a promising model for building collaborative and public health leadership skills and initiating sustained community change for health improvement.

  11. Avian communities in tidal salt marshes of San Francisco Bay: a review of functional groups by foraging guild and habitat association

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takekawa, John Y.; Woo, Isa; Gardiner, Rachel J.; Casazza, Michael L.; Ackerman, Joshua T.; Nur, Nadav; Liu, Leonard; Spautz, Hildie; Palaima, Arnas

    2011-01-01

    The San Francisco Bay estuary is highly urbanized, but it supports the largest remaining extent of tidal salt marshes on the west coast of North America as well as a diverse native bird community. San Francisco Bay tidal marshes are occupied by more than 113 bird species that represent 31 families, including five subspecies from three families that we denote as tidal-marsh obligates. To better identify the niche of bird species in tidal marshes, we present a review of functional groups based on foraging guilds and habitat associations. Foraging guilds describe the method by which species obtain food from tidal marshes, while habitat associations describe broad areas within the marsh that have similar environmental conditions. For example, the ubiquitous song sparrows (Alameda Melospiza melodia pusillula, Suisun M. m. maxillaris, and San Pablo M. m. samuelis) are surface-feeding generalists that consume prey from vegetation and the ground, and they are found across the entire marsh plain into the upland–marsh transition. In contrast, surface-feeding California black rails (Laterallus jamaicensis coturniculus) are cryptic, and generally restricted in their distribution to the mid- and high-marsh plain. Although in the same family, the endangered California clapper rail (Rallus longirostris obsoletus) has become highly specialized, foraging primarily on benthic fauna within marsh channels when they are exposed at low tide. Shorebirds such as the black-necked stilt (Himantopus mexicanus) typically probe in mud flats to consume macroinvertebrate prey, and are generally restricted to foraging on salt pans within the marsh plain, in ponds, or on mud flats during transitional stages of marsh evolution. The abundance and distribution of birds varies widely with changing water depths and vegetation colonization during different stages of restoration. Thus, tidal-marsh birds represent a rich and diverse community in bay marshes, with niches that may be distinguished by the

  12. Functional and phylogenetic structure of island bird communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, Xingfeng; Cadotte, Marc W; Zeng, Di; Baselga, Andrés; Zhao, Yuhao; Li, Jiaqi; Wu, Yiru; Wang, Siyu; Ding, Ping

    2017-05-01

    Biodiversity change in anthropogenically transformed habitats is often nonrandom, yet the nature and importance of the different mechanisms shaping community structure are unclear. Here, we extend the classic Theory of Island Biogeography (TIB) to account for nonrandom processes by incorporating species traits and phylogenetic relationships into a study of faunal relaxation following habitat loss and fragmentation. Two possible mechanisms can create nonrandom community patterns on fragment islands. First, small and isolated islands might consist of similar or closely related species because they are environmentally homogeneous or select for certain shared traits, such as dispersal ability. Alternatively, communities on small islands might contain more dissimilar or distantly related species than on large islands because limited space and resource availability result in greater competitive exclusion among species with high niche overlap. Breeding birds were surveyed on 36 islands and two mainland sites annually from 2010 to 2014 in the Thousand Island Lake region, China. We assessed community structure of breeding birds on these subtropical land-bridge islands by integrating species' trait and evolutionary distances. We additionally analysed habitat heterogeneity and variance in size ratios to distinguish biotic and abiotic processes of community assembly. Results showed that functional-phylogenetic diversity increased with island area, and decreased with isolation. Bird communities on the mainland were more diverse and generally less clustered than island bird communities and not different than randomly assembled communities. Bird communities on islands tend to be functionally similar and phylogenetically clustered, especially on small and isolated islands. The nonrandom decline in species diversity and change in bird community structure with island area and isolation, along with the relatively homogeneous habitats on small islands, support the environmental

  13. Use of Occupancy Models to Evaluate Expert Knowledge-based Species-Habitat Relationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica N. Iglecia

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Expert knowledge-based species-habitat relationships are used extensively to guide conservation planning, particularly when data are scarce. Purported relationships describe the initial state of knowledge, but are rarely tested. We assessed support in the data for suitability rankings of vegetation types based on expert knowledge for three terrestrial avian species in the South Atlantic Coastal Plain of the United States. Experts used published studies, natural history, survey data, and field experience to rank vegetation types as optimal, suitable, and marginal. We used single-season occupancy models, coupled with land cover and Breeding Bird Survey data, to examine the hypothesis that patterns of occupancy conformed to species-habitat suitability rankings purported by experts. Purported habitat suitability was validated for two of three species. As predicted for the Eastern Wood-Pewee (Contopus virens and Brown-headed Nuthatch (Sitta pusilla, occupancy was strongly influenced by vegetation types classified as "optimal habitat" by the species suitability rankings for nuthatches and wood-pewees. Contrary to predictions, Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus models that included vegetation types as covariates received similar support by the data as models without vegetation types. For all three species, occupancy was also related to sampling latitude. Our results suggest that covariates representing other habitat requirements might be necessary to model occurrence of generalist species like the woodpecker. The modeling approach described herein provides a means to test expert knowledge-based species-habitat relationships, and hence, help guide conservation planning.

  14. Data Collection and Simulation of Ecological Habitat and Recreational Habitat in the Shenandoah River, Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krstolic, Jennifer L.

    2015-01-01

    This report presents updates to methods, describes additional data collected, documents modeling results, and discusses implications from an updated habitat-flow model that can be used to predict ecological habitat for fish and recreational habitat for canoeing on the main stem Shenandoah River in Virginia. Given a 76-percent increase in population predictions for 2040 over 1995 records, increased water-withdrawal scenarios were evaluated to determine the effects on habitat and recreation in the Shenandoah River. Projected water demands for 2040 vary by watershed: the North Fork Shenandoah River shows a 55.9-percent increase, the South Fork Shenandoah River shows a 46.5-percent increase, and the main stem Shenandoah River shows a 52-percent increase; most localities are projected to approach the total permitted surface-water and groundwater withdrawals values by 2040, and a few localities are projected to exceed these values.

  15. Determining the extent and characterizing coral reef habitats of the northern latitudes of the Florida Reef Tract (Martin County).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Brian K; Gilliam, David S

    2013-01-01

    Climate change has recently been implicated in poleward shifts of many tropical species including corals; thus attention focused on higher-latitude coral communities is warranted to investigate possible range expansions and ecosystem shifts due to global warming. As the northern extension of the Florida Reef Tract (FRT), the third-largest barrier reef ecosystem in the world, southeast Florida (25-27° N latitude) is a prime region to study such effects. Most of the shallow-water FRT benthic habitats have been mapped, however minimal data and limited knowledge exist about the coral reef communities of its northernmost reaches off Martin County. First benthic habitat mapping was conducted using newly acquired high resolution LIDAR bathymetry and aerial photography where possible to map the spatial extent of coral reef habitats. Quantitative data were collected to characterize benthic cover and stony coral demographics and a comprehensive accuracy assessment was performed. The data were then analyzed in a habitat biogeography context to determine if a new coral reef ecosystem region designation was warranted. Of the 374 km(2) seafloor mapped, 95.2% was Sand, 4.1% was Coral Reef and Colonized Pavement, and 0.7% was Other Delineations. Map accuracy assessment yielded an overall accuracy of 94.9% once adjusted for known map marginal proportions. Cluster analysis of cross-shelf habitat type and widths indicated that the benthic habitats were different than those further south and warranted designation of a new coral reef ecosystem region. Unlike the FRT further south, coral communities were dominated by cold-water tolerant species and LIDAR morphology indicated no evidence of historic reef growth during warmer climates. Present-day hydrographic conditions may be inhibiting poleward expansion of coral communities along Florida. This study provides new information on the benthic community composition of the northern FRT, serving as a baseline for future community shift and

  16. Greater sage-grouse winter habitat use on the eastern edge of their range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher C. Swanson; Mark A. Rumble; Nicholas W. Kaczor; Robert W. Klaver; Katie M. Herman-Brunson; Jonathan A. Jenks; Kent C. Jensen

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) at the western edge of the Dakotas occur in the transition zone between sagebrush and grassland communities. These mixed sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) and grasslands differ from those habitats that comprise the central portions of the sage-grouse range; yet, no information is available on winter habitat selection within this...

  17. Type 'A' and 'B' recovery revisited: The role of field-edge habitats for Collembola and macroarthropod community recovery after insecticide treatment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Frampton, Geoff K. [Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Bassett Crescent East, Southampton SO16 7PX (United Kingdom)]. E-mail: gkf@soton.ac.uk; Gould, Philip J.L. [Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Bassett Crescent East, Southampton SO16 7PX (United Kingdom); Brink, Paul J. van den [Alterra, Wageningen University and Research Centre, P.O. Box 47, 6700 AA Wageningen (Netherlands); Department of Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management, Wageningen University, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Wageningen (Netherlands); Hendy, Eleanor [Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Bassett Crescent East, Southampton SO16 7PX (United Kingdom)

    2007-02-15

    Previous work has identified two patterns of arthropod recovery after insecticide applications to arable crops: dispersal-mediated recolonisation from untreated areas (Type A) and recolonisation within treated areas assisted by reduced predation (Type B). In this study, connectivity between field-edge habitats was manipulated using barriers to investigate whether a crop edge and adjacent hedgerow influence recolonisation of an insecticide-treated crop by surface-active Collembola and other arthropods. Collembola recovery patterns differed among closely-related taxa. Epigeic collembolan and macroarthropod communities were more diverse and abundant, and rates of artificial prey predation were higher, in sprayed crop areas connected to both hedgerow and unsprayed crop edge than in sprayed areas connected to the unsprayed edge alone. These findings indicate that effectiveness of unsprayed crop edges as sources of field recolonisation may depend on adjoining field margin habitats. An assumption in risk assessment that unsprayed crop edges assist population recovery within treated areas is not supported. - Collembola recolonisation differs among species; effectiveness of unsprayed crop edges as sources of arthropod recolonisation may depend on adjacent habitat.

  18. Effects of long-term continuous cropping on soil nematode community and soil condition associated with replant problem in strawberry habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xingyue; Lewis, Edwin E.; Liu, Qizhi; Li, Heqin; Bai, Chunqi; Wang, Yuzhu

    2016-08-01

    Continuous cropping changes soil physiochemical parameters, enzymes and microorganism communities, causing “replant problem” in strawberry cultivation. We hypothesized that soil nematode community would reflect the changes in soil conditions caused by long-term continuous cropping, in ways that are consistent and predictable. To test this hypothesis, we studied the soil nematode communities and several soil parameters, including the concentration of soil phenolic acids, organic matter and nitrogen levels, in strawberry greenhouse under continuous-cropping for five different durations. Soil pH significantly decreased, and four phenolic acids, i.e., p-hydroxybenzoic acid, ferulic acid, cinnamic acid and p-coumaric acid, accumulated with time under continuous cropping. The four phenolic acids were highly toxic to Acrobeloides spp., the eudominant genus in non-continuous cropping, causing it to reduce to a resident genus after seven-years of continuous cropping. Decreased nematode diversity indicated loss of ecosystem stability and sustainability because of continuous-cropping practice. Moreover, the dominant decomposition pathway was altered from bacterial to fungal under continuous cropping. Our results suggest that along with the continuous-cropping time in strawberry habitat, the soil food web is disturbed, and the available plant nutrition as well as the general health of the soil deteriorates; these changes can be indicated by soil nematode community.

  19. Interaction between hydrocarbon seepage, chemosynthetic communities, and bottom water redox at cold seeps of the Makran accretionary prism: insights from habitat-specific pore water sampling and modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Fischer

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The interaction between fluid seepage, bottom water redox, and chemosynthetic communities was studied at cold seeps across one of the world's largest oxygen minimum zones (OMZ located at the Makran convergent continental margin. Push cores were obtained from seeps within and below the core-OMZ with a remotely operated vehicle. Extracted sediment pore water was analyzed for sulfide and sulfate concentrations. Depending on oxygen availability in the bottom water, seeps were either colonized by microbial mats or by mats and macrofauna. The latter, including ampharetid polychaetes and vesicomyid clams, occurred in distinct benthic habitats, which were arranged in a concentric fashion around gas orifices. At most sites colonized by microbial mats, hydrogen sulfide was exported into the bottom water. Where macrofauna was widely abundant, hydrogen sulfide was retained within the sediment.

    Numerical modeling of pore water profiles was performed in order to assess rates of fluid advection and bioirrigation. While the magnitude of upward fluid flow decreased from 11 cm yr−1 to <1 cm yr−1 and the sulfate/methane transition (SMT deepened with increasing distance from the central gas orifice, the fluxes of sulfate into the SMT did not significantly differ (6.6–9.3 mol m−2 yr−1. Depth-integrated rates of bioirrigation increased from 120 cm yr−1 in the central habitat, characterized by microbial mats and sparse macrofauna, to 297 cm yr−1 in the habitat of large and few small vesicomyid clams. These results reveal that chemosynthetic macrofauna inhabiting the outer seep habitats below the core-OMZ efficiently bioirrigate and thus transport sulfate down into the upper 10 to 15 cm of the sediment. In this way the animals deal with the lower upward flux of methane in outer habitats by stimulating rates of anaerobic oxidation of methane (AOM with sulfate high enough to provide

  20. Influence of habitat degradation on fish replenishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormick, M. I.; Moore, J. A. Y.; Munday, P. L.

    2010-09-01

    Temperature-induced coral bleaching is a major threat to the biodiversity of coral reef ecosystems. While reductions in species diversity and abundance of fish communities have been documented following coral bleaching, the mechanisms that underlie these changes are poorly understood. The present study examined the impacts of coral bleaching on the early life-history processes of coral reef fishes. Daily monitoring of fish settlement patterns found that ten times as many fish settled to healthy coral than sub-lethally bleached coral. Species diversity of settling fishes was least on bleached coral and greatest on dead coral, with healthy coral having intermediate levels of diversity. Laboratory experiments using light-trap caught juveniles showed that different damselfish species chose among healthy, bleached and dead coral habitats using different combinations of visual and olfactory cues. The live coral specialist, Pomacentrus moluccensis, preferred live coral and avoided bleached and dead coral, using mostly visual cues to inform their habitat choice. The habitat generalist, Pomacentrus amboinensis, also preferred live coral and avoided bleached and dead coral but selected these habitats using both visual and olfactory cues. Trials with another habitat generalist, Dischistodus sp., suggested that vision played a significant role. A 20 days field experiment that manipulated densities of P. moluccensis on healthy and bleached coral heads found an influence of fish density on juvenile weight and growth, but no significant influence of habitat quality. These results suggests that coral bleaching will affect settlement patterns and species distributions by influencing the visual and olfactory cues that reef fish larvae use to make settlement choices. Furthermore, increased fish density within the remaining healthy coral habitats could play an important role in influencing population dynamics.

  1. Biodiversity and spatial patterns of benthic habitat and associated demersal fish communities at two tropical submerged reef ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdul Wahab, Muhammad Azmi; Radford, Ben; Cappo, Mike; Colquhoun, Jamie; Stowar, Marcus; Depczynski, Martial; Miller, Karen; Heyward, Andrew

    2018-06-01

    Submerged reef ecosystems can be very diverse and may serve as important refugia for shallow-water conspecifics. This study quantified the benthic and fish communities of two proximate, predominantly mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs), Glomar Shoal and Rankin Bank, which are geographically isolated from other similar features in the region. Glomar Shoal is identified as a key ecological feature (KEF) in the North West Marine Region of Australia. Multibeam surveys were performed to characterise the seafloor and to derive secondary environmental variables, used to explain patterns in benthic and fish communities. Towed video surveys quantified benthic cover, and stereo baited remote underwater stations were used to survey fish abundance and diversity. Surveys were completed in depths of 20-115 m. The two MCEs exhibited distinct communities; Rankin Bank consistently had higher cover (up to 30×) of benthic taxa across depths, and fish communities that were twice as abundant and 1.5× more diverse than Glomar Shoal. The location of the MCEs, depth and rugosity were most influential in structuring benthic communities. Phototrophic taxa, specifically macroalgae and hard corals, had up to 22 × higher cover at Rankin Bank than at Glomar Shoal and were dominant to 80 m (compared to 60 m at Glomar Shoal), presumably due to greater light penetration (lower turbidity) and lower sand cover at greater depths. The 20% coral cover at Rankin Bank was comparable to that reported for shallow reefs. The cover of sand, hard corals and sponges influenced fish communities, with higher abundance and diversity of fish associated with shallow hard coral habitats. This study demonstrated that the two MCEs were unique within the local context, and when coupled with their geographical isolation and biodiversity, presents compelling support for the additional recognition of Rankin Bank as a KEF.

  2. [Community-based health promotion--a challenge for the evaluation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loss, J; Eichhorn, C; Gehlert, J; Donhauser, J; Wise, M; Nagel, E

    2007-02-01

    Community-based health promotion (CBHP) aims at mobilising citizens for health-related issues in their environment, and at implementing health-promoting projects on the community level. Whereas recent political decisions support this approach, scientific studies dealing with theories and consequences of CBHP are scarce in Germany. Evaluation of CBHP could help identify (in)effective factors and elements of community programmes and thus improve future planning. In Germany, however, there is a deficit in systematic concepts and recommendations for the evaluation of CBHP. This work outlines basic ideas and core principles of CBHP and deduces implications for the assessment of health-promoting community projects. Based on different international models and studies and on discussions with health promotion professionals, we developed a framework for the evaluation of CBHP. The proposed framework includes a guideline for CBHP programme planning. Its strategic and operational criteria can serve as a basis for a strategy evaluation. In terms of process evaluation, indicators for the dimensions (1) programme implementation and service delivery, (2) capacity building, and (3) reach of and acceptability in the target group were developed. In addition, we present different areas of OUTCOME EVALUATION; it is advisable to distinguish between measurement on the individual and on the community level. The framework further proposes strategies for the evaluation of the core principles empowerment and participation. The presented framework can serve as a basis for the development of flexible and individual instruments for the evaluation of CBHP, which should not ignore the perspective of the citizens, or complex aspects like changes on the community level. Some aspects, e.g., the potential evaluation of further targets of CBHP (improvement of quality of life, reduction of social and health inequalities), the responsibility of evaluation or the effects of financial constraints, are

  3. Scale dependency of American marten (Martes americana) habitat relations [Chapter 12

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrew J. Shirk; Tzeidle N. Wasserman; Samuel A. Cushman; Martin G. Raphael

    2012-01-01

    Animals select habitat resources at multiple spatial scales; therefore, explicit attention to scale-dependency when modeling habitat relations is critical to understanding how organisms select habitat in complex landscapes. Models that evaluate habitat variables calculated at a single spatial scale (e.g., patch, home range) fail to account for the effects of...

  4. The importance of novel and agricultural habitats for the avifauna of an oceanic island

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dallimer, Martin; Parnell, Mark; Bicknell, Jake E.

    2012-01-01

    Conservation management can no longer rely on protecting pristine habitats, but must consider the wider landscape. This is especially true on oceanic islands where endemic species are believed to be particularly susceptible to the extinction risks that accompany land conversion. Despite this......, there is a paucity of studies examining how endemic communities on oceanic islands may be distributed across such human-modified habitats. Taking Principe Island in West Africa as a case study, we investigate how avian communities vary across the habitats (primary forest, secondary forest, agricultural areas......, more diverse and held higher overall abundances of birds than those within primary forest. This was true for both the entire avian assemblage and the endemic species alone. Nevertheless, two IUCN-listed species were restricted to primary forest, and many other endemics occurred at higher densities...

  5. Gauging resource exploitation by juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in restoring estuarine habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Melanie; Ellings, Christopher S.; Woo, Isa; Hodgson, Sayre; Larsen, Kimberly A.; Nakai, Glynnis

    2018-01-01

    In the context of delta restoration and its impact on salmonid rearing, success is best evaluated based on whether out-migrating juvenile salmon can access and benefit from suitable estuarine habitat. Here, we integrated 3 years of post-restoration monitoring data including habitat availability, invertebrate prey biomass, and juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) physiological condition to determine whether individuals profited from the addition of 364 ha of delta habitat in South Puget Sound, Washington, United States. Productivity in the restored mudflat was comparable to reference sites 3 years after dike removal, surpassing a mean total of 6 million kJ energy from invertebrate prey. This resulted from the development of a complex network of tidal channels and a resurgence in dipteran biomass that was unique to the restoration area. Consequently, a notable shift in invertebrate consumption occurred between 2010 and 2011, whereby individuals switched from eating primarily amphipods to dipteran flies; however, dietary similarity to the surrounding habitat did not change from year to year, suggesting that this shift was a result of a change in the surrounding prey communities. Growth rates did not differ between restored and reference sites, but catch weight was positively correlated with prey biomass, where greater prey productivity appeared to offset potential density-dependent effects. These results demonstrate how the realized function of restoring estuarine habitat is functionally dependent. High prey productivity in areas with greater connectivity may support healthy juvenile salmon that are more likely to reach the critical size class for offshore survival.

  6. Evaluation of landscape level habitat characteristics of golden eagle habitat in Northwestern Mexico

    OpenAIRE

    Bravo Vinaja, Maria Guadalupe

    2012-01-01

    Golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos canadensis Linnaeus 1758) are declining in some areas throughout their Nearctic range (Sauer et al. 2011). This reduction is linked to changes in their habitat caused by human activities. Golden eagles inhabit an extensive range of environments (Watson 1997, Kochert et al. 2002). In the American Continent, the golden eagleâ s range encompasses Alaska, Canada, the United States and the Northern and Central portions of Mexico. Northern golden eagle populations...

  7. Species composition, richness and nestedness of lizard assemblages from Restinga habitats along the brazilian coast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, C F D; Vrcibradic, D; Kiefer, M C; Menezes, V A; Fontes, A F; Hatano, F H; Galdino, C A B; Bergallo, H G; Van Sluys, M

    2014-05-01

    Habitat fragmentation is well known to adversely affect species living in the remaining, relatively isolated, habitat patches, especially for those having small range size and low density. This negative effect has been critical in coastal resting habitats. We analysed the lizard composition and richness of restinga habitats in 16 restinga habitats encompassing three Brazilian states (Rio de Janeiro, Espírito Santo and Bahia) and more than 1500km of the Brazilian coast in order to evaluate if the loss of lizard species following habitat reduction occur in a nested pattern or at random, using the "Nestedness Temperature Calculator" to analyse the distribution pattern of lizard species among the restingas studied. We also estimated the potential capacity that each restinga has to maintain lizard species. Eleven lizard species were recorded in the restingas, although not all species occurred in all areas. The restinga with the richest lizard fauna was Guriri (eight species) whereas the restinga with the lowest richness was Praia do Sul (located at Ilha Grande, a large coastal island). Among the restingas analysed, Jurubatiba, Guriri, Maricá and Praia das Neves, were the most hospitable for lizards. The matrix community temperature of the lizard assemblages was 20.49° (= P restingas exhibited a considerable nested structure. The degree in which an area is hospitable for different assemblages could be used to suggest those with greater value of conservation. We concluded that lizard assemblages in coastal restingas occur at a considerable level of ordination in restinga habitats and that some restinga areas such as Jurubatiba, Guriri, Maricá and Praia das Neves are quite important to preserve lizard diversity of restinga environments.

  8. Assessing Wild Bee Biodiversity in Cranberry Agroenvironments: Influence of Natural Habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gervais, Amélie; Fournier, Valérie; Sheffield, Cory S; Chagnon, Madeleine

    2017-08-01

    The conservation of bee populations for pollination in agricultural landscapes has attracted a lot of recent research interest, especially for crop industries undergoing expansion to meet increased production demands. In Canada, much growth has been occurring with commercial cranberry production, a field crop which is largely dependent on bee pollination. Wild bee pollinators could be negatively impacted by losses of natural habitat surrounding cranberry fields to accommodate increased production, but growers have little insight on how to manage their lands to maximize the presence of wild bees. Here, we described a 2-yr study where bee diversity and species composition were investigated to better understand the dynamic between natural habitat and cranberry fields. Bees were sampled using pan-traps and hand netting both within cranberry fields and in one of the three adjacent natural habitat types once a week during the crop flowering period. We found that bee community composition among cranberry fields did not differ based on the respective adjacent habitat type, but fields bordered by meadows were marginally less diverse than fields bordered by forest. As one would expect, field and natural habitat communities differed in terms of species composition and species richness. There was no evidence that one type of natural habitat was more favorable for the bees than another. Future agrobiodiversity studies should simultaneously examine bee diversity comprised in both crop fields and adjacent natural environments to better understand the species dynamics essential to the preservation of pollination services. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Do Mangroves Subsidize Carbon to Adjacent Mudflat Fish Communities?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henkel, S.; Kasten, S.; Hartmann, J.; Staubwasser, M.; Hernandez, M. F.; West, L.; Midway, S. R.; Polito, M. J.

    2017-12-01

    Mangroves are often implicated as energetic sources for fisheries productivity. However, the validity of this connection still remains in contention. Stable isotopes may provide answers by tracking the use of specific basal carbon sources in fish and invertebrates living in mangrove-mudflat habitat mosaics. We analyzed 307 consumer samples representing n=44 fish and invertebrate species collected from mangrove forest creeks and adjacent mudflats in coastal Tanzania using bulk carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis. Given the proposed high productivity of mangrove habitats, we hypothesize that mudflat communities will have carbon stable isotope values similar to mangrove communities either through the flux of mangrove carbon into adjacent mudflats and/or via the movement of mudflat fish communities into and out of mangrove habitats. Alternatively, mangrove carbon is often refractory, which may result in mudflat communities with isotopic values that differ from those found in adjacent mangrove communities. This scenario would suggest limited carbon flow between mudflat and mangrove food webs and that the movement of fish into and out of mangrove habitats is related to shelter from predation more than feeding. Data analysis is ongoing to test these competing hypotheses. By understanding the contribution of mangrove carbon to adjacent habitats, managers in Tanzania can make better informed decisions regarding the protection of mangroves and the local fisheries, which are a crucial source of income and food.

  10. [Quality evaluation and antioxidant activity research of Schisandra chinensis from various habitats].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Zhi-Fu; Hu, Gao-Sheng; Li, Na; Fan, Xing; Jia, Jing-Ming

    2012-12-01

    To determine the contents of lignans, crude polysaccharides (CP) and total phenolic compounds (TPC) of Schisandra chinensis from various habitats in Liaoning province and evaluate their quality and free radical scavenging (FRS) activity. Contents of schisandrol, deoxyschizandrin and schisandrin B were determined by RP-HPLC. Contents of TPC, CP and FRS activity were determined by Folin-Cicalteu's, phenol-sulfuric acid and DPPH x method, respectively. Sample from Liaoyang city had the highest contents of lignans (21.75 mg/g); Sample from Shenbei New district of Shenyang city had the highest contents of CP (88.72 mg/g); Sample from Guanmenshan district of Benxi city had the highest contents of TPC and FRS activity (26.06 mg/g and 86.3%, respectively). Linear regression analysis results showed that contents of TPC had higher correlation coefficient with FRS activity than that of lignans. Their linear regression equations were Y = 1.3677X + 46.97, R2 = 0.6869 and Y = 2.5916X + 57.927, R2 = 0.1747 for TPC and lignans with FRS activity, respectively. The contents of lignans, CP and TPC are significantly different from samples collected from various habitats in Liaoning province. The main antioxidative substances are TPC, and lignans have no significant correlation with FRS activity.

  11. A specter of coexistence: Is centrifugal community organization haunted by the ghost of competition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserberg, Gideon; Kotler, B.P.; Morris, D.W.; Abramsky, Z.

    2006-01-01

    In a centrifugally organized community species prefer the same habitat (called "core") but differ in their secondary habitat preferences. The first model of centrifugal community organization (CCO) predicted that optimally foraging, symmetrically competing species would share use of the core habitat at all density combinations. But one might also assume that the competition in the core habitat is asymmetrical, that is, that one of the species (the dominant) has a behavioral advantage therein. In this study, we asked how should habitat use evolve in a centrifugally organized community if its species compete asymmetrically in the core habitat? To address this question we developed an "isoleg model". The model predicts that in a centrifugally organized community, asymmetric competition promotes the use of the core habitat exclusively by the dominant species at most points in the state space. The separation of the core habitat use by the species ("the ghost of competition past") may be either complete or partial ("partial ghost"), and behavior at the stable competitive equilibrium between the species could determine whether coexistence should occur at the "complete-" or the "partial ghost" regions. This version of CCO should be a common feature of competitive systems.

  12. Habitat or matrix: which is more relevant to predict road-kill of vertebrates?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bueno, C; Sousa, C O M; Freitas, S R

    2015-11-01

    We believe that in tropics we need a community approach to evaluate road impacts on wildlife, and thus, suggest mitigation measures for groups of species instead a focal-species approach. Understanding which landscape characteristics indicate road-kill events may also provide models that can be applied in other regions. We intend to evaluate if habitat or matrix is more relevant to predict road-kill events for a group of species. Our hypothesis is: more permeable matrix is the most relevant factor to explain road-kill events. To test this hypothesis, we chose vertebrates as the studied assemblage and a highway crossing in an Atlantic Forest region in southeastern Brazil as the study site. Logistic regression models were designed using presence/absence of road-kill events as dependent variables and landscape characteristics as independent variables, which were selected by Akaike's Information Criterion. We considered a set of candidate models containing four types of simple regression models: Habitat effect model; Matrix types effect models; Highway effect model; and, Reference models (intercept and buffer distance). Almost three hundred road-kills and 70 species were recorded. River proximity and herbaceous vegetation cover, both matrix effect models, were associated to most road-killed vertebrate groups. Matrix was more relevant than habitat to predict road-kill of vertebrates. The association between river proximity and road-kill indicates that rivers may be a preferential route for most species. We discuss multi-species mitigation measures and implications to movement ecology and conservation strategies.

  13. Bacterial diversity and biogeochemistry of different chemosynthetic habitats of the REGAB cold seep (West African margin, 3160 m water depth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Pop Ristova

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The giant pockmark REGAB (West African margin, 3160 m water depth is an active methane-emitting cold seep ecosystem, where the energy derived from microbially mediated oxidation of methane supports high biomass and diversity of chemosynthetic communities. Bare sediments interspersed with heterogeneous chemosynthetic assemblages of mytilid mussels, vesicomyid clams and siboglinid tubeworms form a complex seep ecosystem. To better understand if benthic bacterial communities reflect the patchy distribution of chemosynthetic fauna, all major chemosynthetic habitats at REGAB were investigated using an interdisciplinary approach combining pore water geochemistry, in situ quantification of fluxes and consumption of methane, as well as bacterial community fingerprinting. This study revealed that sediments populated by different fauna assemblages show distinct biogeochemical activities and are associated with distinct sediment bacterial communities. The methane consumption rates and methane effluxes ranged over one to two orders of magnitude across habitats, and reached highest values at the mussel habitat, which hosted a different bacterial community compared to the other habitats. Clam assemblages had a profound impact on the sediment geochemistry, but less so on the bacterial community structure. Moreover, all clam assemblages at REGAB were restricted to sediments characterized by complete methane consumption in the seafloor, and intermediate biogeochemical activity. Overall, variations in the sediment geochemistry were reflected in the distribution of both fauna and microbial communities; and were mostly determined by methane flux.

  14. Mourning Dove nesting habitat and nest success in Central Missouri

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drobney, R.D.; Schulz, J.H.; Sheriff, S.L.; Fuemmeler, W.J.

    1998-01-01

    Previous Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) nesting studies conducted in areas containing a mixture of edge and continuous habitats have focused on edge habitats. Consequently, little is known about the potential contribution of continuous habitats to dove production. In this study we evaluated the relative importance of these two extensive habitat types by monitoring the habitat use and nest success of 59 radio-marked doves during 1990-1991 in central Missouri. Of 83 nests initiated by our marked sample, most (81.9%) were located in edge habitats. Although continuous habitats were selected less as nest sites, the proportion of successful nests did not differ significantly from that in edge habitats. Our data indicate that continuous habitats should not be considered marginal nesting habitat. If the intensity of use and nest success that we observed are representative regionally or nationally, continuous habitats could contribute substantially to annual Mourning Dove production because of the high availability of these habitats throughout much of the Mourning Dove breeding range.

  15. Biodiversity Conservation: Why Local Inhabitants Destroy Habitat In ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This review identifies some intrinsic and extrinsic factors that tend to drive the destruction of habitat, game poaching and unsustainable utilization of plants products by communities surrounding many protected areas around the world, leading to wildlife and plant species decline. Intrinsic factors are basic needs of the locals; ...

  16. Habitat quality of the woolly spider monkey (Brachyteles hypoxanthus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva Júnior, Wilson Marcelo; Alves Meira-Neto, João Augusto; da Silva Carmo, Flávia Maria; Rodrigues de Melo, Fabiano; Santana Moreira, Leandro; Ferreira Barbosa, Elaine; Dias, Luiz Gustavo; da Silva Peres, Carlos Augusto

    2009-01-01

    This study examines how habitat structure affects the home range use of a group of Brachyteles hypoxanthus in the Brigadeiro State Park, Brazil. It has been reported that most of the annual feeding time of woolly spider monkeys is spent eating leaves, but they prefer fruits when available. We hypothesise that the protein-to-fibre ratio (PF; best descriptor of habitat quality for folivorous primates) is a better descriptor of habitat quality and abundance for these primates than the structural attributes of forests (basal area is the best descriptor of habitat quality for frugivorous primates of Africa and Asia). We evaluated plant community structure, successional status, and PF of leaf samples from the dominant tree populations, both within the core and from a non-core area of the home range of our study group. Forest structure was a combination of stem density and basal area of dominant tree populations. The core area had larger trees, a higher forest basal area, and higher stem density than the non-core area. Mean PF did not differ significantly between these sites, although PF was influenced by differences in tree regeneration guilds. Large-bodied monkeys could be favoured by later successional stages of forests because larger trees and denser stems prevent the need for a higher expenditure of energy for locomotion as a consequence of vertical travel when the crowns of trees are disconnected in early successional forests. Forest structure variables (such as basal area of trees) driven by succession influence woolly spider monkey abundance in a fashion similar to frugivorous monkeys of Asia and Africa, and could explain marked differences in ranging behaviour and home range use by B. hypoxanthus. Copyright 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  17. Conséquences de l'interaction entre préférences pour l'habitat et quantité de ressources trophiques sur les communautés d'insectes coprophages (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadiri, Nassera; Lobo, Jorge M.; Lumaret, Jean-Pierre

    Between the years 1988 and 1995, five dung beetle communities were studied in combined conditions of habitat and trophic resources. Investigations were conducted on La Viale experimental farm, in the Causse Méjean, southern France. At each site, dung beetle traps of standard design were set up simultaneously. In most situations, the vegetation cover acted like a filter that allowed the penetration of several ubiquitous but fundamentally open-habitat dung beetle species into forest, at the same time drastically limiting their numbers. Open and close sites differed significantly, open and grazed sites showing the highest richness, abundance and biomass in beetles. Both in open and close sites, a significant increase in trophic resources led to an increase of the diversity and evenness. However in open-habitat, when resources were too abundant, few species were favoured and the diversity and evenness decreased. In forest-habitat, a continuous grazing during several years (increase in resources) modified the dung beetle community, with a high increase in the numbers and biomass of beetles but a smaller increase in richness. Numbers in forest habitat readjusted to the level observed in open habitat with equivalent trophic resources. Similarly to what was observed in open pastures, the forest communities were able to adjust their numbers to the level of available trophic resources. Resources were a more active variable than the structure of habitat on the dung beetle communities. Important resources go against the filter effect which allows the penetration under cover of open-habitat species. Changes were slow (several years), and forest communities remained weak. The poverty of forest habitats is discussed: This scarcity in species is probably due to long time human activities in Europe which drastically reduced forest habitats and developped grazing, favouring generalist and heliophilous open-habitat dung beetle species. Actual grassland communities in Europe are

  18. Spatial variability in fish species assemblage and community structure in four subtropical lagoons of the Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosepele, K.; Mosepele, B.; Bokhutlo, T.; Amutenya, K.

    The species assemblage and community structure of four lagoons was assessed through time series data collected between 2001 and 2005 in the Okavango Delta. The main aim of this study was to evaluate the importance of lagoons as fish habitats in the Delta. Therefore, this study assessed the importance of these habitats through determining fish species diversity, composition, relative abundance, and community structure between the lagoons. Forty six species belonging to 11 families and five orders were collected over the study period. Main results showed that Cichlidae was the most important family and had the highest species richness in the lagoons. Significant differences ( p lodges are constructed, which makes subsequently makes them vulnerable to pollution. Therefore, the integrity of lagoon habitats needs to be maintained so that their ecosystem functioning (i.e. fish repositories) is maintained.

  19. Thermal biology mediates responses of amphibians and reptiles to habitat modification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowakowski, A Justin; Watling, James I; Thompson, Michelle E; Brusch, George A; Catenazzi, Alessandro; Whitfield, Steven M; Kurz, David J; Suárez-Mayorga, Ángela; Aponte-Gutiérrez, Andrés; Donnelly, Maureen A; Todd, Brian D

    2018-03-01

    Human activities often replace native forests with warmer, modified habitats that represent novel thermal environments for biodiversity. Reducing biodiversity loss hinges upon identifying which species are most sensitive to the environmental conditions that result from habitat modification. Drawing on case studies and a meta-analysis, we examined whether observed and modelled thermal traits, including heat tolerances, variation in body temperatures, and evaporative water loss, explained variation in sensitivity of ectotherms to habitat modification. Low heat tolerances of lizards and amphibians and high evaporative water loss of amphibians were associated with increased sensitivity to habitat modification, often explaining more variation than non-thermal traits. Heat tolerances alone explained 24-66% (mean = 38%) of the variation in species responses, and these trends were largely consistent across geographic locations and spatial scales. As habitat modification alters local microclimates, the thermal biology of species will likely play a key role in the reassembly of terrestrial communities. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  20. Habitat features influencing jaguar Panthera onca (Carnivora: Felidae occupancy in Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanny Arroyo-Arce

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Habitat characteristics and human activities are known to play a major role in the occupancy of jaguars Panthera onca across their range, however the key variables influencing jaguar distribution in Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica, have yet to be identified. This study evaluated jaguar occupancy in Tortuguero National Park and the surrounding area. Jaguar detection/non-detection data was collected using digital camera traps distributed within the boundaries of the protected area. Local community members were also interviewed to determine jaguar occurrence in the Park’s buffer zone. Occupancy models were then applied to identify the habitat characteristics that may better explain jaguar distribution across the study area. From June 2012 to June 2013, a total of 4 339 camera trap days were used to identify 18 individual jaguars inside the protected area; 17 of these jaguars were exclusively detected within the coastal habitat, whilst the remaining individual was detected solely within the interior of the Park. Interviewees reported 61 occasions of jaguar presence inside the buffer zone, between 1995 and 2013, with 80% of these described by the communities of Lomas de Sierpe, Barra de Parismina and La Aurora. These communities also reported the highest levels of livestock predation by jaguars (85% of attacks. In the study area, jaguar occurrence was positively correlated with the seasonal presence of nesting green turtles Chelonia mydas, and negatively correlated with distance to the Park boundary. Our findings suggested that the current occupancy of the jaguar in the study area may be a response to: 1 the vast availability of prey (marine turtles on Tortuguero beach, 2 the decline of its primary prey species as a result of illegal hunting inside the Park, and 3 the increase in anthropogenic pressures in the Park boundaries. Rev. Biol. Trop. 62 (4: 1449-1458. Epub 2014 December 01.

  1. The Predictability of Phytophagous Insect Communities: Host Specialists as Habitat Specialists

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Müller, J.; Stadler, J.; Jarzabek-Müller, A.; Hacker, H.; Braak, ter C.J.F.; Brandl, R.

    2011-01-01

    The difficulties specialized phytophagous insects face in finding habitats with an appropriate host should constrain their dispersal. Within the concept of metacommunities, this leads to the prediction that host-plant specialists should sort into local assemblages according to the local

  2. The influence of multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors on benthic communities in a mid-west agricultural stream.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Lenwood W; Killen, Willian D; Anderson, Ronald D; Alden, Raymond W

    2017-08-24

    The objective of this 3-year study was to characterize benthic communities and physical habitat in an agricultural stream in the mid-west area of the United States (Big Bureau Creek, Illinois). Concurrent basic water quality parameters and seven nutrients were measured in the water column. Sediment measurements from depositional areas were conducted for bifenthrin, Total Organic Carbon, grain size, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and eight metals. All parameters were measured at 12 sites annually during the late summer for a 3-year period (2014, 2015 and 2016). Univariate regressions, stepwise multiple regressions and canonical correlation statistical analyses were used to determine the relationship between various benthic metrics (i.e., taxa richness and abundance) and all the measured parameters for the 3-year database. Benthic communities comprising 108-110 taxa were collected annually, and were generally dominated by sensitive caddisflies and mayflies. These communities were rated as good to exceptional using the Ohio Invertebrate Community Index. Physical habitat for the various sites was rated as good using the Ohio Qualitative Habitat Evaluation Index, thus suggesting that habitat is not a significant stressor that would likely impact resident benthic communities. Based on a comparison of measured in-stream total nitrogen and total phosphorus concentrations and criterion value exceedances, it appears that the in-stream nutrient concentrations could be potentially stressful to resident benthic biota. Metal concentrations were below established NOAA Threshold Effects Levels at all sites. Measured PCB concentrations were below levels of detection at all sites. Toxic units' (TUs) calculations based on using sensitive laboratory strains of Hyalella were less than 0.1 for bifenthrin, thus suggesting that bifenthrin sediment toxicity was unlikely. Thirty significant relationships reported between benthic metrics and the various environmental variables based on the

  3. Spearfishing data reveals the littoral fish communities' association to coastal configuration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boada, Jordi; Sagué, Oscar; Gordoa, Ana

    2017-12-01

    Increasing the knowledge about littoral fish communities is important for ecological sciences, fisheries and the sustainability of human communities. The scarcity of baseline data at large spatial scales in a fast-changing world makes it necessary to implement special programs to monitor natural ecosystems. In the present study, we evaluate littoral fish communities using data from spearfishing contests. The Catalan Federation of Underwater Activities (FECDAS) regularly organizes fishing contests across ca. 600 km of coast. Catch records made over the last sixteen years were used to study the fish communities along the coastline. We found two different communities that are closely related to the habitat configuration at a regional level. Interestingly, contests held on the northern coast were mainly grouped together and were characterized by species that inhabit complex rocky habitats, and contests held on the southern coast were grouped together and were mainly determined by soft bottoms species (i.e. mugilids and Sarpa salpa). In the south group the white sea bream was also very abundant compared to the north group. No significant changes in the community composition were found in the studied period and we successfully set descriptive baselines. Finally, based on these results we propose that studying the data from fishing contest records can be used to complement the available tools for monitoring fish communities.

  4. Use of sand wave habitats by silver hake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auster, P.J.; Lindholm, J.; Schaub, S.; Funnell, G.; Kaufman, L.S.; Valentine, P.C.

    2003-01-01

    Silver hake Merluccius bilinearis are common members of fish communities in sand wave habitats on Georges Bank and on Stellwagen Bank in the Gulf of Maine. Observations of fish size v. sand wave period showed that silver hake are not randomly distributed within sand wave landscapes. Regression analyses showed a significant positive relationship between sand wave period and fish length. Correlation coefficients, however, were low, suggesting other interactions with sand wave morphology, the range of current velocities, and available prey may also influence their distribution. Direct contact with sand wave habitats varied over diel periods, with more fish resting on the seafloor during daytime than at night. Social foraging, in the form of polarized groups of fish swimming in linear formations during crepuscular and daytime periods, was also observed. Sand wave habitats may provide shelter from current flows and mediate fish-prey interactions. ?? 2003 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2015-01-01

    The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore c...

  6. Extinction Debt and Colonizer Credit on a Habitat Perturbed Fishing Bank.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duplisea, Daniel E; Frisk, Michael G; Trenkel, Verena M

    2016-01-01

    Temporal changes in occupancy of the Georges Bank (NE USA) fish and invertebrate community were examined and interpreted in the context of systems ecological theory of extinction debt (EDT). EDT posits that in a closed system with a mix of competitor and colonizer species and experiencing habitat fragmentation and loss, the competitor species will show a gradual decline in fitness (occupancy) eventually leading to their extinction (extirpation) over multiple generations. A corollary of this is a colonizer credit, where colonizer species occupancy may increase with fragmentation because the disturbance gives that life history a transient relative competitive advantage. We found that competitor species occupancy decreased in time concomitant with an increase in occupancy of colonizer species and this may be related to habitat fragmentation or loss owing to industrialized bottom trawl fishing. Mean species richness increased over time which suggests less specialization (decreased dominance) of the assemblage that may result from habitat homogenization. These analyses also showed that when abundance of species was decreased by fishing but eventually returned to previous levels, on average it had a lower occupancy than earlier in the series which could increase their vulnerability to depletion by fishing. Changing occupancy and diversity patterns of the community over time is consistent with EDT which can be exacerbated by direct impacts of fishery removals as well as climate change impacts on the fish community assemblage.

  7. Extinction Debt and Colonizer Credit on a Habitat Perturbed Fishing Bank.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel E Duplisea

    Full Text Available Temporal changes in occupancy of the Georges Bank (NE USA fish and invertebrate community were examined and interpreted in the context of systems ecological theory of extinction debt (EDT. EDT posits that in a closed system with a mix of competitor and colonizer species and experiencing habitat fragmentation and loss, the competitor species will show a gradual decline in fitness (occupancy eventually leading to their extinction (extirpation over multiple generations. A corollary of this is a colonizer credit, where colonizer species occupancy may increase with fragmentation because the disturbance gives that life history a transient relative competitive advantage. We found that competitor species occupancy decreased in time concomitant with an increase in occupancy of colonizer species and this may be related to habitat fragmentation or loss owing to industrialized bottom trawl fishing. Mean species richness increased over time which suggests less specialization (decreased dominance of the assemblage that may result from habitat homogenization. These analyses also showed that when abundance of species was decreased by fishing but eventually returned to previous levels, on average it had a lower occupancy than earlier in the series which could increase their vulnerability to depletion by fishing. Changing occupancy and diversity patterns of the community over time is consistent with EDT which can be exacerbated by direct impacts of fishery removals as well as climate change impacts on the fish community assemblage.

  8. Arroyo Management Plan (Alameda County): A Plan for Implementing Access and Restoring Riparian Habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent E. Watson; Jim Horner; Louise Mozingo

    1989-01-01

    Innovative techniques for restoring riparian habitats are of little value without a community endorsed plan for their implementation. A flood control district commissioned the Arroyo Management Plan in order to determine how it might provide public access and improve habitat along its current and future channels in a fast-growing area of Northern California. The Plan,...

  9. Natural shorelines promote the stability of fish communities in an urbanized coastal system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven B Scyphers

    Full Text Available Habitat loss and fragmentation are leading causes of species extinctions in terrestrial, aquatic and marine systems. Along coastlines, natural habitats support high biodiversity and valuable ecosystem services but are often replaced with engineered structures for coastal protection or erosion control. We coupled high-resolution shoreline condition data with an eleven-year time series of fish community structure to examine how coastal protection structures impact community stability. Our analyses revealed that the most stable fish communities were nearest natural shorelines. Structurally complex engineered shorelines appeared to promote greater stability than simpler alternatives as communities nearest vertical walls, which are among the most prevalent structures, were most dissimilar from natural shorelines and had the lowest stability. We conclude that conserving and restoring natural habitats is essential for promoting ecological stability. However, in scenarios when natural habitats are not viable, engineered landscapes designed to mimic the complexity of natural habitats may provide similar ecological functions.

  10. Commercially important species associated with horse mussel (Modiolus modiolus) biogenic reefs: A priority habitat for nature conservation and fisheries benefits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kent, Flora E.A.; Mair, James M.; Newton, Jason; Lindenbaum, Charles; Porter, Joanne S.; Sanderson, William G.

    2017-01-01

    Horse mussel reefs (Modiolus modiolus) are biodiversity hotspots afforded protection by Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the NE Atlantic. In this study, horse mussel reefs, cobble habitats and sandy habitats were assessed using underwater visual census and drop-down video techniques in three UK regions. Megafauna were enumerated, differences in community composition and individual species abundances were analysed. Samples of conspicuous megafauna were also collected from horse mussel reefs in Orkney for stable isotope analysis. Communities of conspicuous megafauna were different between horse mussel habitats and other habitats throughout their range. Three commercially important species: whelks (Buccinum undatum), queen scallops (Aequipecten opercularis) and spider crabs (Maja brachydactyla) were significantly more abundant (by as much as 20 times) on horse mussel reefs than elsewhere. Isotopic analysis provided insights into their trophic relationship with the horse mussel reef. Protection of M. modiolus habitat can achieve biodiversity conservation objectives whilst benefiting fisheries also. - Highlights: • Communities of conspicuous megafauna were assessed on Modiolus modiolus reefs, sand and cobble habitats. • Tissue samples from reef fauna were subject to stable isotope analysis to investigate trophic structure. • Reef associated species included Aequipecten opercularis, Buccinum undatum and Maja brachydactyla. • Evidence of the commercial value of M. modiolus reefs in the UK.

  11. Unraveling the drivers of community dissimilarity and species extinction in fragmented landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banks-Leite, Cristina; Ewers, Robert M; Metzger, Jean Paul

    2012-12-01

    Communities in fragmented landscapes are often assumed to be structured by species extinction due to habitat loss, which has led to extensive use of the species-area relationship (SAR) in fragmentation studies. However, the use of the SAR presupposes that habitat loss leads species to extinction but does not allow for extinction to be offset by colonization of disturbed-habitat specialists. Moreover, the use of SAR assumes that species richness is a good proxy of community changes in fragmented landscapes. Here, we assessed how communities dwelling in fragmented landscapes are influenced by habitat loss at multiple scales; then we estimated the ability of models ruled by SAR and by species turnover in successfully predicting changes in community composition, and asked whether species richness is indeed an informative community metric. To address these issues, we used a data set consisting of 140 bird species sampled in 65 patches, from six landscapes with different proportions of forest cover in the Atlantic Forest of Brazil. We compared empirical patterns against simulations of over 8 million communities structured by different magnitudes of the power-law SAR and with species-specific rules to assign species to sites. Empirical results showed that, while bird community composition was strongly influenced by habitat loss at the patch and landscape scale, species richness remained largely unaffected. Modeling results revealed that the compositional changes observed in the Atlantic Forest bird metacommunity were only matched by models with either unrealistic magnitudes of the SAR or by models ruled by species turnover, akin to what would be observed along natural gradients. We show that, in the presence of such compositional turnover, species richness is poorly correlated with species extinction, and z values of the SAR strongly underestimate the effects of habitat loss. We suggest that the observed compositional changes are driven by each species reaching its

  12. Stratification of habitats for identifying habitat selection by Merriam's turkeys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark A. Rumble; Stanley H. Anderson

    1992-01-01

    Habitat selection patterns of Merriam’s Turkeys were compared in hierarchical analyses of three levels of habitat stratification. Habitat descriptions in first-level analyses were based on dominant species of vegetation. Habitat descriptions in second-level analyses were based on dominant species of vegetation and overstory canopy cover. Habitat descriptions in third-...

  13. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Technical Report 2000-2001.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allard, Donna

    2001-09-01

    Steigenvald Lake National Wildlife Refuge (NWR, refuge) was established as a result of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE) transferring ownership of the Stevenson tract located in the historic Steigerwald Lake site to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS, Service) for the mitigation of the fish and wildlife losses associated with the construction of a second powerhouse at the Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River and relocation of the town of North Bonneville (Public Law 98-396). The construction project was completed in 1983 and resulted in the loss of approximately 577 acres of habitat on the Washington shore of the Columbia River (USFWS, 1982). The COE determined that acquisition and development of the Steigenvald Lake area, along with other on-site project management actions, would meet their legal obligation to mitigate for these impacts (USCOE, 1985). Mitigation requirements included restoration and enhancement of this property to increase overall habitat diversity and productivity. From 1994 to 1999, 317 acres of additional lands, consisting of four tracts of contiguous land, were added to the original refuge with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) funds provided through the Washington Wildlife Mitigation Agreement. These tracts comprised Straub (191 acres), James (90 acres), Burlington Northern (27 acres), and Bliss (9 acres). Refer to Figure 1. Under this Agreement, BPA budgeted $2,730,000 to the Service for 'the protection, mitigation, and enhancement of wildlife and wildlife habitat that was adversely affected by the construction of Federal hydroelectric dams on the Columbia River or its tributaries' in the state of Washington (BPA, 1993). Lands acquired for mitigation resulting from BPA actions are evaluated using the habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) methodology, which quantifies how many Habitat Units (HUs) are to be credited to BPA. HUs or credits gained lessen BPA's debt, which was formally tabulated in the Federal Columbia

  14. Modeling habitat split: landscape and life history traits determine amphibian extinction thresholds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Roberto Fonseca

    Full Text Available Habitat split is a major force behind the worldwide decline of amphibian populations, causing community change in richness and species composition. In fragmented landscapes, natural remnants, the terrestrial habitat of the adults, are frequently separated from streams, the aquatic habitat of the larvae. An important question is how this landscape configuration affects population levels and if it can drive species to extinction locally. Here, we put forward the first theoretical model on habitat split which is particularly concerned on how split distance - the distance between the two required habitats - affects population size and persistence in isolated fragments. Our diffusive model shows that habitat split alone is able to generate extinction thresholds. Fragments occurring between the aquatic habitat and a given critical split distance are expected to hold viable populations, while fragments located farther away are expected to be unoccupied. Species with higher reproductive success and higher diffusion rate of post-metamorphic youngs are expected to have farther critical split distances. Furthermore, the model indicates that negative effects of habitat split are poorly compensated by positive effects of fragment size. The habitat split model improves our understanding about spatially structured populations and has relevant implications for landscape design for conservation. It puts on a firm theoretical basis the relation between habitat split and the decline of amphibian populations.

  15. Modeling habitat split: landscape and life history traits determine amphibian extinction thresholds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonseca, Carlos Roberto; Coutinho, Renato M; Azevedo, Franciane; Berbert, Juliana M; Corso, Gilberto; Kraenkel, Roberto A

    2013-01-01

    Habitat split is a major force behind the worldwide decline of amphibian populations, causing community change in richness and species composition. In fragmented landscapes, natural remnants, the terrestrial habitat of the adults, are frequently separated from streams, the aquatic habitat of the larvae. An important question is how this landscape configuration affects population levels and if it can drive species to extinction locally. Here, we put forward the first theoretical model on habitat split which is particularly concerned on how split distance - the distance between the two required habitats - affects population size and persistence in isolated fragments. Our diffusive model shows that habitat split alone is able to generate extinction thresholds. Fragments occurring between the aquatic habitat and a given critical split distance are expected to hold viable populations, while fragments located farther away are expected to be unoccupied. Species with higher reproductive success and higher diffusion rate of post-metamorphic youngs are expected to have farther critical split distances. Furthermore, the model indicates that negative effects of habitat split are poorly compensated by positive effects of fragment size. The habitat split model improves our understanding about spatially structured populations and has relevant implications for landscape design for conservation. It puts on a firm theoretical basis the relation between habitat split and the decline of amphibian populations.

  16. Community food webs data and theory

    CERN Document Server

    Cohen, Joel E; Newman, Charles M

    1990-01-01

    Food webs hold a central place in ecology. They describe which organisms feed on which others in natural habitats. This book describes recently discovered empirical regularities in real food webs: it proposes a novel theory unifying many of these regularities, as well as extensive empirical data. After a general introduction, reviewing the empirical and theoretical discoveries about food webs, the second portion of the book shows that community food webs obey several striking phenomenological regularities. Some of these unify, regardless of habitat. Others differentiate, showing that habitat significantly influences structure. The third portion of the book presents a theoretical analysis of some of the unifying empirical regularities. The fourth portion of the book presents 13 community food webs. Collected from scattered sources and carefully edited, they are the empirical basis for the results in the volume. The largest available set of data on community food webs provides a valuable foundation for future s...

  17. Contrasts in short- and long-term responses of Mediterranean reptile species to fire and habitat structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Xavier; Badiane, Arnaud; Matos, Cátia

    2016-01-01

    Changes in habitat structure constitute a major factor explaining responses of reptiles to fire. However, few studies have examined habitat factors that covary with fire-history variables to explain reptile responses. We hypothesise that more complex habitats should support richer reptile communities, and that species-specific relative abundance should be related to particular habitat features. From spring 2012-2014, twenty-five transects were surveyed in the Albera Region (north-east Iberia). The vegetation structure was measured and the extent of habitat types in a 1000-m buffer around each transect calculated. Reptile-community metrics (species richness and reptile abundance) were related to fire history, vegetation structure, and habitat types, using generalized additive models. These metrics correlated with habitat-structure variables but not with fire history. The number of species increased with more complex habitats but decreased with pine-plantation abundance in the 1000-m buffer. We found contrasting responses among reptiles in terms of time since fire and those responses differed according to vegetation variables and habitat types. An unplanned fire in August 2012 provided the opportunity to compare reptile abundance values between pre-fire and the short term (1-2 years) after the fire. Most species exhibited a negative short-term response to the 2012 fire except Tarentola mauritanica, a gecko that inhabits large rocks, as opposed to other ground-dwelling species. In the reptiles studied, contrasting responses to time since fire are consistent with the habitat-accommodation model of succession. These differences are linked to specific microhabitat preferences and suggest that functional traits can be used to predict species-specific responses to fire.

  18. Seasonal and interannual effects of hypoxia on fish habitat quality in central Lake Erie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arend, Kristin K.; Beletsky, Dmitry; DePinto, Joseph; Ludsin, Stuart A.; Roberts, James J.; Rucinski, Daniel K.; Scavia, Donald; Schwab, David J.; Höök, Tomas O.

    2011-01-01

    1. Hypoxia occurs seasonally in many stratified coastal marine and freshwater ecosystems when bottom dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations are depleted below 2–3 mg O2 L-1. 2. We evaluated the effects of hypoxia on fish habitat quality in the central basin of Lake Erie from 1987 to 2005, using bioenergetic growth rate potential (GRP) as a proxy for habitat quality. We compared the effect of hypoxia on habitat quality of (i) rainbow smelt, Osmerus mordax mordax Mitchill (young-of-year, YOY, and adult), a cold-water planktivore, (ii) emerald shiner, Notropis atherinoides Rafinesque (adult), a warm-water planktivore, (iii) yellow perch, Perca flavescens Mitchill (YOY and adult), a cool-water benthopelagic omnivore and (iv) round goby Neogobius melanostomus Pallas (adult) a eurythermal benthivore. Annual thermal and DO profiles were generated from 1D thermal and DO hydrodynamics models developed for Lake Erie’s central basin. 3. Hypoxia occurred annually, typically from mid-July to mid-October, which spatially and temporally overlaps with otherwise high benthic habitat quality. Hypoxia reduced the habitat quality across fish species and life stages, but the magnitude of the reduction varied both among and within species because of the differences in tolerance to low DO levels and warm-water temperatures. 4. Across years, trends in habitat quality mirrored trends in phosphorus concentration and water column oxygen demand in central Lake Erie. The per cent reduction in habitat quality owing to hypoxia was greatest for adult rainbow smelt and round goby (mean: -35%), followed by adult emerald shiner (mean: -12%), YOY rainbow smelt (mean: -10%) and YOY and adult yellow perch (mean: -8.5%). 5. Our results highlight the importance of differential spatiotemporally interactive effects of DO and temperature on relative fish habitat quality and quantity. These effects have the potential to influence the performance of individual fish species as well as population dynamics

  19. A Tentative Study on the Evaluation of Community Health Service Quality*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Zhi-qiang; Zhu, Yong-yue

    Community health service is the key point of health reform in China. Based on pertinent studies, this paper constructed an indicator system for the community health service quality evaluation from such five perspectives as visible image, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and sympathy, according to service quality evaluation scale designed by Parasuraman, Zeithaml and Berry. A multilevel fuzzy synthetical evaluation model was constructed to evaluate community health service by fuzzy mathematics theory. The applicability and maneuverability of the evaluation indicator system and evaluation model were verified by empirical analysis.

  20. Species composition, richness and nestedness of lizard assemblages from Restinga habitats along the brazilian coast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CFD. Rocha

    Full Text Available Habitat fragmentation is well known to adversely affect species living in the remaining, relatively isolated, habitat patches, especially for those having small range size and low density. This negative effect has been critical in coastal resting habitats. We analysed the lizard composition and richness of restinga habitats in 16 restinga habitats encompassing three Brazilian states (Rio de Janeiro, Espírito Santo and Bahia and more than 1500km of the Brazilian coast in order to evaluate if the loss of lizard species following habitat reduction occur in a nested pattern or at random, using the “Nestedness Temperature Calculator” to analyse the distribution pattern of lizard species among the restingas studied. We also estimated the potential capacity that each restinga has to maintain lizard species. Eleven lizard species were recorded in the restingas, although not all species occurred in all areas. The restinga with the richest lizard fauna was Guriri (eight species whereas the restinga with the lowest richness was Praia do Sul (located at Ilha Grande, a large coastal island. Among the restingas analysed, Jurubatiba, Guriri, Maricá and Praia das Neves, were the most hospitable for lizards. The matrix community temperature of the lizard assemblages was 20.49° (= P <0.00001; 5000 randomisations; randomisation temperature = 51.45° ± 7.18° SD, indicating that lizard assemblages in the coastal restingas exhibited a considerable nested structure. The degree in which an area is hospitable for different assemblages could be used to suggest those with greater value of conservation. We concluded that lizard assemblages in coastal restingas occur at a considerable level of ordination in restinga habitats and that some restinga areas such as Jurubatiba, Guriri, Maricá and Praia das Neves are quite important to preserve lizard diversity of restinga environments.

  1. Evaluation a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt

    OpenAIRE

    Sharma, Sheetal; Simkhada, Padam; Hundley, Vanora; Van Teijlingen, Edwin; Stephens, Jane; Silwal, R.C.; Angell, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Using the example of a community-based health promotion intervention, this paper explores the important triangle between health promotion theory, intervention design, and evaluation research. This paper first outlines the intervention and then the mixed-method evaluation. In 2007, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) designed and implemented an intervention to improve the uptake of maternal health provision in rural Nepal. A community-based needs assessment preceded this novel healt...

  2. Environmental Metabarcoding Reveals Contrasting Belowground and Aboveground Fungal Communities from Poplar at a Hg Phytomanagement Site.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, Alexis; Maillard, François; Foulon, Julie; Gweon, Hyun S; Valot, Benoit; Chalot, Michel

    2017-11-01

    Characterization of microbial communities in stressful conditions at a field level is rather scarce, especially when considering fungal communities from aboveground habitats. We aimed at characterizing fungal communities from different poplar habitats at a Hg-contaminated phytomanagement site by using Illumina-based sequencing, network analysis approach, and direct isolation of Hg-resistant fungal strains. The highest diversity estimated by the Shannon index was found for soil communities, which was negatively affected by soil Hg concentration. Among the significant correlations between soil operational taxonomic units (OTUs) in the co-occurrence network, 80% were negatively correlated revealing dominance of a pattern of mutual exclusion. The fungal communities associated with Populus roots mostly consisted of OTUs from the symbiotic guild, such as members of the Thelephoraceae, thus explaining the lowest diversity found for root communities. Additionally, root communities showed the highest network connectivity index, while rarely detected OTUs from the Glomeromycetes may have a central role in the root network. Unexpectedly high richness and diversity were found for aboveground habitats, compared to the root habitat. The aboveground habitats were dominated by yeasts from the Lalaria, Davidiella, and Bensingtonia genera, not detected in belowground habitats. Leaf and stem habitats were characterized by few dominant OTUs such as those from the Dothideomycete class producing mutual exclusion with other OTUs. Aureobasidium pullulans, one of the dominating OTUs, was further isolated from the leaf habitat, in addition to Nakazawaea populi species, which were found to be Hg resistant. Altogether, these findings will provide an improved point of reference for microbial research on inoculation-based programs of tailings dumps.

  3. Watershed Evaluation and Habitat Response to Recent Storms : Annual Report for 1998.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rhodes, Jonathan J.; Huntington, Charles W.

    1999-01-01

    Large and powerful storm systems moved through the Pacific Northwest during the wet season of 1995-96, triggering widespread flooding, mass erosion, and, possibly altering salmon habitats in affected watersheds. This project study was initiated to assess whether watershed conditions are causing damage, triggered by storm events, to salmon habitat on public lands in the Snake River basin.

  4. Effects of recent volcanic eruptions on aquatic habitat in the Drift River, Alaska, USA: Implications at other Cook Inlet region volcanoes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorava, J.M.; Milner, A.M.

    1999-01-01

    Numerous drainages supporting productive salmon habitat are surrounded by active volcanoes on the west side of Cook Inlet in south-central Alaska. Eruptions have caused massive quantities of flowing water and sediment to enter the river channels emanating from glaciers and snowfields on these volcanoes. Extensive damage to riparian and aquatic habitat has commonly resulted, and benthic macroinvertebrate and salmonid communities can be affected. Because of the economic importance of Alaska's fisheries, detrimental effects on salmonid habitat can have significant economic implications. The Drift River drains glaciers on the northern and eastern flanks of Redoubt Volcano: During and following eruptions in 1989-1990, severe physical disturbances to the habitat features of the river adversely affected the fishery. Frequent eruptions at other Cook Inlet region volcanoes exemplify the potential effects of volcanic activity on Alaska's important commercial, sport, and subsistence fisheries. Few studies have documented the recovery of aquatic habitat following volcanic eruptions. The eruptions of Redoubt Volcano in 1989-1990 offered an opportunity to examine the recovery of the macroinvertebrate community. Macroinvertebrate community composition and structure in the Drift River were similar in both undisturbed and recently disturbed sites. Additionally, macroinvertebrate samples from sites in nearby undisturbed streams were highly similar to those from some Drift River sites. This similarity and the agreement between the Drift River macroinvertebrate community composition and that predicted by a qualitative model of typical macroinvertebrate communities in glacier-fed rivers indicate that the Drift River macroinvertebrate community is recovering five years after the disturbances associated with the most recent eruptions of Redoubt Volcano.

  5. Evaluation of biochemical and haematological parameters and prevalence of selected pathogens in feral cats from urban and rural habitats in South Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Jusun; Gottdenker, Nicole; Min, Mi-Sook; Lee, Hang; Chun, Myung-Sun

    2016-06-01

    In this study, we evaluated the potential association between the habitat types of feral cats and the prevalence of selected infectious pathogens and health status based on a set of blood parameters. We live-trapped 72 feral cats from two different habitat types: an urban area (n = 48) and a rural agricultural area (n = 24). We compared blood values and the prevalence of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) and haemotropic Mycoplasma infection in feral cats from the two contrasting habitats. Significant differences were observed in several blood values (haematocrit, red blood cells, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine) depending on the habitat type and/or sex of the cat. Two individuals from the urban area were seropositive for FIV (3.0%), and eight (12.1%) were positive for FeLV infection (five from an urban habitat and three from a rural habitat). Haemoplasma infection was more common. Based on molecular analysis, 38 cats (54.3%) were positive for haemoplasma, with a significantly higher infection rate in cats from rural habitats (70.8%) compared with urban cats (47.8%). Our study recorded haematological and serum biochemical values, and prevalence of selected pathogens in feral cat populations from two different habitat types. A subset of important laboratory parameters from rural cats showed values under or above the corresponding reference intervals for healthy domestic cats, suggesting potential differences in the health status of feral cats depending on the habitat type. Our findings provide information about the association between 1) blood values (haematological and serum biochemistry parameters) and 2) prevalence of selected pathogen infections and different habitat types; this may be important for veterinarians who work with feral and/or stray cats and for overall cat welfare management. © ISFM and AAFP 2015.

  6. Evaluating Community College Personnel: A Research Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deegan, William L.; And Others

    A statewide survey was conducted of local evaluation policies, procedures, and problems of implementing evaluation programs on the campuses of California community colleges. The following areas were studied: (1) the process of development of the evaluation program; (2) procedures utilized in the first year of implementing Senate Bill 696…

  7. Linking stream flow and groundwater to avian habitat in a desert riparian system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merritt, David M; Bateman, Heather L

    2012-10-01

    Increasing human populations have resulted in aggressive water development in arid regions. This development typically results in altered stream flow regimes, reduced annual flow volumes, changes in fluvial disturbance regimes, changes in groundwater levels, and subsequent shifts in ecological patterns and processes. Balancing human demands for water with environmental requirements to maintain functioning ecosystems requires quantitative linkages between water in streams and ecosystem attributes. Streams in the Sonoran Desert provide important habitat for vertebrate species, including resident and migratory birds. Habitat structure, food, and nest-building materials, which are concentrated in riparian areas, are provided directly or indirectly by vegetation. We measured riparian vegetation, groundwater and surface water, habitat structure, and bird occurrence along Cherry Creek, a perennial tributary of the Salt River in central Arizona, USA. The purpose of this work was to develop an integrated model of groundwater-vegetation-habitat structure and bird occurrence by: (1) characterizing structural and provisioning attributes of riparian vegetation through developing a bird habitat index (BHI), (2) validating the utility of our BHI through relating it to measured bird community composition, (3) determining the riparian plant species that best explain the variability in BHI, (4) developing predictive models that link important riparian species to fluvial disturbance and groundwater availability along an arid-land stream, and (5) simulating the effects of changes in flow regime and groundwater levels and determining their consequences for riparian bird communities. Riparian forest and shrubland vegetation cover types were correctly classified in 83% of observations as a function of fluvial disturbance and depth to water table. Groundwater decline and decreased magnitude of fluvial disturbance caused significant shifts in riparian cover types from riparian forest to

  8. Strengthening community leadership: evaluation findings from the california healthy cities and communities program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kegler, Michelle C; Norton, Barbara L; Aronson, Robert E

    2008-04-01

    Collaborative approaches to community health improvement such as healthy cities and communities have the potential to strengthen community capacity through leadership development. The healthy cities and communities process orients existing local leadership to new community problem-solving strategies and draws out leadership abilities among residents not previously engaged in civic life. In an evaluation of the California Healthy Cities and Communities (CHCC) Program, leadership development was one of several outcomes assessed at the civic-participation level of the social ecology. Data collection methods included focus groups and surveys, semistructured interviews with coordinators and community leaders, and review of program documents. Findings suggest that the CHCC program enhanced capacity by expanding new leadership opportunities through coalition participation, program implementation, and civic leadership roles related to spin-off organizations and broader collaborative structures. Communities in rural regions were particularly successful in achieving significant leadership outcomes.

  9. Managing harvest and habitat as integrated components

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osnas, Erik; Runge, Michael C.; Mattsson, Brady J.; Austin, Jane E.; Boomer, G. S.; Clark, R. G.; Devers, P.; Eadie, J. M.; Lonsdorf, E. V.; Tavernia, Brian G.

    2014-01-01

    In 2007, several important initiatives in the North American waterfowl management community called for an integrated approach to habitat and harvest management. The essence of the call for integration is that harvest and habitat management affect the same resources, yet exist as separate endeavours with very different regulatory contexts. A common modelling framework could help these management streams to better understand their mutual effects. Particularly, how does successful habitat management increase harvest potential? Also, how do regional habitat programmes and large-scale harvest strategies affect continental population sizes (a metric used to express habitat goals)? In the ensuing five years, several projects took on different aspects of these challenges. While all of these projects are still on-going, and are not yet sufficiently developed to produce guidance for management decisions, they have been influential in expanding the dialogue and producing some important emerging lessons. The first lesson has been that one of the more difficult aspects of integration is not the integration across decision contexts, but the integration across spatial and temporal scales. Habitat management occurs at local and regional scales. Harvest management decisions are made at a continental scale. How do these actions, taken at different scales, combine to influence waterfowl population dynamics at all scales? The second lesson has been that consideration of the interface of habitat and harvest management can generate important insights into the objectives underlying the decision context. Often the objectives are very complex and trade-off against one another. The third lesson follows from the second – if an understanding of the fundamental objectives is paramount, there is no escaping the need for a better understanding of human dimensions, specifically the desires of hunters and nonhunters and the role they play in conservation. In the end, the compelling question is

  10. Sea otters homogenize mussel beds and reduce habitat provisioning in a rocky intertidal ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerald G Singh

    Full Text Available Sea otters (Enhydra lutris are keystone predators that consume a variety of benthic invertebrates, including the intertidal mussel, Mytilus californianus. By virtue of their competitive dominance, large size, and longevity, M. californianus are ecosystem engineers that form structurally complex beds that provide habitat for diverse invertebrate communities. We investigated whether otters affect mussel bed characteristics (i.e. mussel length distributions, mussel bed depth, and biomass and associated community structure (i.e. biomass, alpha and beta diversity by comparing four regions that varied in their histories of sea otter occupancy on the west coast of British Columbia and northern Washington. Mussel bed depth and average mussel lengths were 1.5 times lower in regions occupied by otters for >20 years than those occupied for <5 yrs. Diversity of mussel bed associated communities did not differ between regions; however, the total biomass of species associated with mussel beds was more than three-times higher where sea otters were absent. We examined alternative explanations for differences in mussel bed community structure, including among-region variation in oceanographic conditions and abundance of the predatory sea star Pisaster ochraceus. We cannot discount multiple drivers shaping mussel beds, but our findings indicate the sea otters are an important one. We conclude that, similar to their effects on subtidal benthic invertebrates, sea otters reduce the size distributions of intertidal mussels and, thereby, habitat available to support associated communities. Our study indicates that by reducing populations of habitat-providing intertidal mussels, sea otters may have substantial indirect effects on associated communities.

  11. Deep-sea benthic habitats modeling and mapping in a NE Atlantic seamount (Galicia Bank)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, A.; González-Irusta, J. M.; Punzón, A.; García-Alegre, A.; Lourido, A.; Ríos, P.; Blanco, M.; Gómez-Ballesteros, M.; Druet, M.; Cristobo, J.; Cartes, J. E.

    2017-08-01

    This study presents the results of seafloor habitat identification and mapping of a NE Atlantic deep seamount. An ;assemble first, predict later; approach has been followed to identify and map the benthic habitats of the Galicia Bank (NW Iberian). Biotic patterns inferred from the survey data have been used to drive the definition of benthic assemblages using multivariate tools. Eight assemblages, four hard substrates and four sedimentary ones, have been described from a matrix of structural species. Distribution of these assemblages was correlated with environmental factors (multibeam and backscatter data) using binomial GAMs. Finally, the distribution model of each assemblage was applied to produce continuous maps and pooled in a final map with the distribution of the main benthic habitats. Depth and substrate type are key factors when determining soft bottom communities, whereas rocky habitat distribution is mainly explained by rock slope and orientation. Enrichment by northern water masses (LSW) arriving to GB and possible zooplankton biomass increase at vertical-steep walls by ;bottom trapping; can explain the higher diversity of habitat providing filter-feeders at slope rocky breaks. These results concerning vulnerable species and habitats, such as Lophelia and Madrepora communities and black and bamboo coral aggregations were the basis of the Spanish proposal of inclusion within the Natura 2000 network. The aim of the present study was to establish the scientific criteria needed for managing and protecting those environmental values.

  12. Characterizing the diversity of coral reef habitats and fish communities found in a UNESCO World Heritage Site: the strategy developed for Lagoons of New Caledonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andréfouët, S; Wantiez, L

    2010-01-01

    Since 1972, the UNESCO "World Heritage Convention" offers an international canvas for conservation and management that targets areas of high cultural and environmental significance. To support the designation of areas within the 36.000 km(2) of New Caledonia coral reefs and lagoons as a World Heritage Site, the natural value and diversity of the proposed zones needed to be demonstrated. To exhaustively identify each configuration of shallow habitats, high resolution remote sensing images were used to select the sampling sites. This optimal scheme resulted in the selection of nearly 1300 sampling sites, and was then simplified to render its application realistic. In the final sampling plan, only the most common or the most remarkable coral zones were selected. Following this selection, in situ habitat and fish surveys were conducted in 2006-2008 in five large areas spanning a 600 km-long latitudinal gradient. Habitats were described using line-intercept transects in parallel with underwater visual census of indicator and commercial coral reef fish species. We report here on the results achieved in terms of: (i) the actual diversity of coral habitats captured by the remote sensing based sampling strategy, (ii) the different reef fish communities captured from the different sites, and (iii) how well they represent New Caledonia diversity. We discuss the possible generalization of this scheme to other sites, in the context of World Heritage Site selection and for other large-scale conservation planning activities. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Polar ecosystem dynamics: recovery of communities from organic enrichment in McMurdo Sound, Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Stacy; Hammerstom, Kamille K; Conlan, Kathleen E; Thurber, Andrew R

    2010-12-01

    Community structure and diversity are influenced by patterns of disturbance and input of food. In Antarctica, the marine ecosystem undergoes highly seasonal changes in availability of light and in primary production. Near research stations, organic input from human activities can disturb the regular productivity regime with a consistent input of sewage. McMurdo Sound has both high-productivity and low-productivity habitats, thereby providing an ideal test bed for community recovery dynamics under polar conditions. We used experimental manipulations of the subtidal communities to test the hypotheses that (1) benthic communities respond differently to disturbance from organic enrichment versus burial and (2) community response also varies in areas with different natural patterns of food supply. Both in low- and high-food habitats, the strongest community response was to organic enrichment and resulted in dominance of typical organic-enrichment specialists. In habitats with highly seasonal productivity, community response was predictable and recovery was rapid. In habitats with low productivity, community variability was high and caging treatments suggested that inconsistencies were due to patchy impacts by scavengers. In areas normally subject to regular organic enrichment, either from primary production or from further up the food web (defecation by marine mammals), recovery of benthic communities takes only years even in a polar system. However, a low-productivity regime is as common in near shore habitats around the continent; under these conditions, recovery of benthic communities from disturbance is likely to be much slower and follow a variable ecological trajectory.

  14. Evaluating Stream Restoration Projects: What Do We Learn from Monitoring?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zan Rubin

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Two decades since calls for stream restoration projects to be scientifically assessed, most projects are still unevaluated, and conducted evaluations yield ambiguous results. Even after these decades of investigation, do we know how to define and measure success? We systematically reviewed 26 studies of stream restoration projects that used macroinvertebrate indicators to assess the success of habitat heterogeneity restoration projects. All 26 studies were previously included in two meta-analyses that sought to assess whether restoration programs were succeeding. By contrast, our review focuses on the evaluations themselves, and asks what exactly we are measuring and learning from these evaluations. All 26 studies used taxonomic diversity, richness, or abundance of invertebrates as biological measures of success, but none presented explicit arguments why those metrics were relevant measures of success for the restoration projects. Although changes in biodiversity may reflect overall ecological condition at the regional or global scale, in the context of reach-scale habitat restoration, more abundance and diversity may not necessarily be better. While all 26 studies sought to evaluate the biotic response to habitat heterogeneity enhancement projects, about half of the studies (46% explicitly measured habitat alteration, and 31% used visual estimates of grain size or subjectively judged ‘habitat quality’ from protocols ill-suited for the purpose. Although the goal of all 26 projects was to increase habitat heterogeneity, 31% of the studies either sampled only riffles or did not specify the habitats sampled. One-third of the studies (35% used reference ecosystems to define target conditions. After 20 years of stream restoration evaluation, more work remains for the restoration community to identify appropriate measures of success and to coordinate monitoring so that evaluations are at a scale capable of detecting ecosystem change.

  15. Evaluation of a Research Mentorship Program in Community Care

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ploeg, Jenny; de Witt, Lorna; Hutchison, Brian; Hayward, Lynda; Grayson, Kim

    2008-01-01

    This article describes the results of a qualitative case study evaluating a research mentorship program in community care settings in Ontario, Canada. The purpose of the program was to build evaluation and research capacity among staff of community care agencies through a mentorship program. Data were collected through in-depth, semi-structured…

  16. Are online communities on par with experts in the evaluation of new movies?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ponnamma Divakaran, Pradeep Kumar; Nørskov, Sladjana

    2016-01-01

    Purpose This paper investigates two questions. First, are movie-based online community evaluations on par with film expert evaluations of new movies? Second, which group makes more reliable and accurate predictions of movie box office revenues: film reviewers or an online community? Design....../methodology/approach Data were collected from a movie-based online community Fandango for a 16-month period and included all movies released during this time (373 movies). We compared film reviewers’ evaluations with the online community evaluations during the first eight weeks of the movie’s release. Findings The study...... finds that community members evaluate movies differently than film reviewers. The results also reveal that community evaluations have more predictive power than film reviewers’ evaluations, especially during the opening week of a movie. Research limitations/implications The investigated online community...

  17. Towards a Caribou Habitat Management Strategy for Northwestern Ontario: Running the Gauntlet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerald D. Racey

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available A management strategy for woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou habitat is being developed in northwestern Ontario. This strategy is based upon a set of draft Timber Management Guidelines for the Provision of Woodland Caribou Habitat. These guidelines recommend maintaining a sustainable supply of winter habitat within large tracts of old forest, protecting calving areas and minimizing human disturbance. Due to the large temporal and spatial scale of caribou habitat management, an ecosystem-based approach is recommended. Public response to the strategy shows a strong dichotomy between environmental and utilitarian values among all the major stakeholder groups. The major issues raised by the public include security of industrial wood supply, quality of the knowledge base, level of awareness of caribou, economic impacts on remote communities, concern about environmental impacts and silvicultural know-how. The government is responding to these concerns as the strategy evolves. Current emphasis is placed on increasing awareness of the public, training resource managers in caribou biology, management and habitat planning, implementing interim habitat management prescriptions and studying the potential impact on wood supply. The final direction for a northwestern Ontario strategy to conserve woodland caribou habitat has yet to be decided, although a commitment has been made to strive for the conservation of woodland caribou populations and their habitat.

  18. Effects of habitat and substrate complexity on shallow sublittoral fish assemblages in the Cyclades Archipelago, North-eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. GIAKOUMI

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available This is the first study to explore fish community structure and its relations to habitat and topographic complexity in the shallow coastal waters of the Cyclades Archipelago, North-eastern Mediterranean Sea. In situ visual surveys were carried out at 233 sampling sites in 26 islands of the Cyclades Archipelago. Fish community parameters and biomass were estimated across seven substrate types: sand, seagrass, vertical walls, boulders, horizontal/subhorizontal continuous rock, rocky substrate with patches of sand, and rocky substrate with patches of sand and Posidonia oceanica. Topographic complexity and percentage of algal cover were estimated on hard substrate. Substrate type was found to be a determining factor affecting the structure and composition of fish assemblages. Species number, abundance and biomass were significantly lower in sandy areas and always higher on hard substrates, with seagrass habitats presenting intermediate values. Topographic complexity in rocky bottoms did not seem to affect species richness, density or biomass. This study provides a baseline for future evaluation of changes produced by potential management actions such as the creation of marine protected areas in the study region.

  19. Linking Vegetation Structure and Spider Diversity in Riparian and Adjacent Habitats in Two Rivers of Central Argentina: An Analysis at Two Conceptual Levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griotti, Mariana; Muñoz-Escobar, Christian; Ferretti, Nelson E

    2017-08-01

    The link between vegetation structure and spider diversity has been well explored in the literature. However, few studies have compared spider diversity and its response to vegetation at two conceptual levels: assemblage (species diversity) and ensemble (guild diversity). Because of this, we studied spider diversity in riparian and adjacent habitats of a river system from the Chacoan subregion in central Argentina and evaluated their linkage with vegetation structure at these two levels. To assess vegetation structure, we measured plant species richness and vegetation cover in the herb and shrub - tree layers. We collected spiders for over 6 months by using vacuum netting, sweep netting and pitfall traps. We collected 3,808 spiders belonging to 119 morphospecies, 24 families and 9 guilds. At spider assemblage level, SIMPROF analysis showed significant differences among studied habitats. At spider ensemble level, nevertheless, we found no significant differences among habitats. Concerning the linkage with vegetation structure, BIOENV test showed that spider diversity at either assemblage or ensemble level was not significantly correlated with the vegetation variables assessed. Our results indicated that spider diversity was not affected by vegetation structure. Hence, even though we found a pattern in spider assemblages among habitats, this could not be attributed to vegetation structure. In this study, we show that analyzing a community at two conceptual levels will be useful for recognizing different responses of spider communities to vegetation structure in diverse habitat types. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Evaluation of complex community-based childhood obesity prevention interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karacabeyli, D; Allender, S; Pinkney, S; Amed, S

    2018-05-16

    Multi-setting, multi-component community-based interventions have shown promise in preventing childhood obesity; however, evaluation of these complex interventions remains a challenge. The objective of the study is to systematically review published methodological approaches to outcome evaluation for multi-setting community-based childhood obesity prevention interventions and synthesize a set of pragmatic recommendations. MEDLINE, CINAHL and PsycINFO were searched from inception to 6 July 2017. Papers were included if the intervention targeted children ≤18 years, engaged at least two community sectors and described their outcome evaluation methodology. A single reviewer conducted title and abstract scans, full article review and data abstraction. Directed content analysis was performed by three reviewers to identify prevailing themes. Thirty-three studies were included, and of these, 26 employed a quasi-experimental design; the remaining were randomized control trials. Body mass index was the most commonly measured outcome, followed by health behaviour change and psychosocial outcomes. Six themes emerged, highlighting advantages and disadvantages of active vs. passive consent, quasi-experimental vs. randomized control trials, longitudinal vs. repeat cross-sectional designs and the roles of process evaluation and methodological flexibility in evaluating complex interventions. Selection of study designs and outcome measures compatible with community infrastructure, accompanied by process evaluation, may facilitate successful outcome evaluation. © 2018 World Obesity Federation.

  1. Habitat or matrix: which is more relevant to predict road-kill of vertebrates?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Bueno

    Full Text Available Abstract We believe that in tropics we need a community approach to evaluate road impacts on wildlife, and thus, suggest mitigation measures for groups of species instead a focal-species approach. Understanding which landscape characteristics indicate road-kill events may also provide models that can be applied in other regions. We intend to evaluate if habitat or matrix is more relevant to predict road-kill events for a group of species. Our hypothesis is: more permeable matrix is the most relevant factor to explain road-kill events. To test this hypothesis, we chose vertebrates as the studied assemblage and a highway crossing in an Atlantic Forest region in southeastern Brazil as the study site. Logistic regression models were designed using presence/absence of road-kill events as dependent variables and landscape characteristics as independent variables, which were selected by Akaike’s Information Criterion. We considered a set of candidate models containing four types of simple regression models: Habitat effect model; Matrix types effect models; Highway effect model; and, Reference models (intercept and buffer distance. Almost three hundred road-kills and 70 species were recorded. River proximity and herbaceous vegetation cover, both matrix effect models, were associated to most road-killed vertebrate groups. Matrix was more relevant than habitat to predict road-kill of vertebrates. The association between river proximity and road-kill indicates that rivers may be a preferential route for most species. We discuss multi-species mitigation measures and implications to movement ecology and conservation strategies.

  2. Movement, demographics, and occupancy dynamics of a federally-threatened salamander: evaluating the adequacy of critical habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan F. Bendik

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Critical habitat for many species is often limited to occupied localities. For rare and cryptic species, or those lacking sufficient data, occupied habitats may go unrecognized, potentially hindering species recovery. Proposed critical habitat for the aquatic Jollyville Plateau salamander (Eurycea tonkawae and two sister species were delineated based on the assumption that surface habitat is restricted to springs and excludes intervening stream reaches. To test this assumption, we performed two studies to understand aspects of individual, population, and metapopulation ecology of E. tonkawae. First, we examined movement and population demographics using capture-recapture along a spring-influenced stream reach. We then extended our investigation of stream habitat use with a study of occupancy and habitat dynamics in multiple headwater streams. Indications of extensive stream channel use based on capture-recapture results included frequent movements of >15 m, and high juvenile abundance downstream of the spring. Initial occupancy of E. tonkawae was associated with shallow depths, maidenhair fern presence and low temperature variation (indicative of groundwater influence, although many occupied sites were far from known springs. Additionally, previously dry sites were three times more likely to be colonized than wet sites. Our results indicate extensive use of stream habitats, including intermittent ones, by E. tonkawae. These areas may be important for maintaining population connectivity or even as primary habitat patches. Restricting critical habitat to occupied sites will result in a mismatch with actual habitat use, particularly when assumptions of habitat use are untested, thus limiting the potential for recovery.

  3. Detecting and evaluating communities in complex human and biological networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, Greg; Mahadevan, L.

    2012-02-01

    We develop a simple method for detecting the community structure in a network can by utilizing a measure of closeness between nodes. This approach readily leads to a method of coarse graining the network, which allows the detection of the natural hierarchy (or hierarchies) of community structure without appealing to an unknown resolution parameter. The closeness measure can also be used to evaluate the robustness of an individual node's assignment to its community (rather than evaluating only the quality of the global structure). Each of these methods in community detection and evaluation are illustrated using a variety of real world networks of either biological or sociological importance and illustrate the power and flexibility of the approach.

  4. Habitat Use Database - Groundfish Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) Habitat Use Database (HUD)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Habitat Use Database (HUD) was specifically designed to address the need for habitat-use analyses in support of groundfish EFH, HAPCs, and fishing and nonfishing...

  5. Using Population Dose to Evaluate Community-level Health Initiatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harner, Lisa T; Kuo, Elena S; Cheadle, Allen; Rauzon, Suzanne; Schwartz, Pamela M; Parnell, Barbara; Kelly, Cheryl; Solomon, Loel

    2018-05-01

    Successful community-level health initiatives require implementing an effective portfolio of strategies and understanding their impact on population health. These factors are complicated by the heterogeneity of overlapping multicomponent strategies and availability of population-level data that align with the initiatives. To address these complexities, the population dose methodology was developed for planning and evaluating multicomponent community initiatives. Building on the population dose methodology previously developed, this paper operationalizes dose estimates of one initiative targeting youth physical activity as part of the Kaiser Permanente Community Health Initiative, a multicomponent community-level obesity prevention initiative. The technical details needed to operationalize the population dose method are explained, and the use of population dose as an interim proxy for population-level survey data is introduced. The alignment of the estimated impact from strategy-level data analysis using the dose methodology and the data from the population-level survey suggest that dose is useful for conducting real-time evaluation of multiple heterogeneous strategies, and as a viable proxy for existing population-level surveys when robust strategy-level evaluation data are collected. This article is part of a supplement entitled Building Thriving Communities Through Comprehensive Community Health Initiatives, which is sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, Community Health. Copyright © 2018 American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Multi–criteria evaluation and simulated annealing for delimiting high priority habitats of Alectoris chukar and Phasianus colchicus in Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Momeni Dehaghi, I.

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Habitat degradation and hunting are among the most important causes of population decline for Alectoris chukar and Phasianus colchicus, two of the most threatened game species in the Golestan Province of Iran. Limited data on distribution and location of high–quality habitats for the two species make conservation efforts more difficult in the province. We used multi–criteria evaluation (MCE as a coarse–filter approach to refine the general distribution areas into habitat suitability maps for the species. We then used these maps as input to simulated annealing as a heuristic algorithm through Marxan in order to prioritize areas for conservation of the two species. To find the optimal solution, we tested various boundary length modifier (BLM values in the simulated annealing process. Our results showed that the MCE approach was useful to refine general habitat maps. Assessment of the selected reserves confirmed the suitability of the selected areas (mainly neighboring the current reserves making their management easier and more feasible. The total area of the selected reserves was about 476 km2. As current reserves of the Golestan Province represent only 23 % of the optimal area, further protected areas should be considered to efficiently conserve these two species.

  7. Ecological attributes of the benthic community and indices of water quality in urban, rural and preserved environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Eiko Yoshida

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Reference streams are pristine streams, untouched or unaltered by man, it being possible to use their environmental characteristics as quality threshold values. Besides the organic impacts measured via water quality biological monitoring programs, it has become necessary to evaluate the relationship between alterations in the landscape of streams and surrounding areas and changes in the structure of the macroinvertebrate community; AIM: The objective of the present study was to correlate the changes in the landscape with the ecological attributes of the community and indices of water quality, and to recommend reference condition values for the integrity of streams in the region of Jundiai (SP; METHODS: The benthic fauna were sampled in three urban streams, three rural streams and three preserved streams during July 2010, using a Surber-type sampler. The characteristics of the landscape were evaluated by means of Diversity of Habitat; the community, analyzed for several biodiversity indices, and; the water quality assessed using the indices River-BCI, BMWP-CETEC (CETEC - Science and Technology Center, ASPT and SOMI (SOMI - Serra dos Órgãos Multimetric Index (Serra dos Órgãos is a mountain range national park in the state of Rio de Janeiro; RESULTS: The structure and the composition of the communities varied according to the stream and this was reflected in the values of the biological and environmental quality indices. The best conditions were found in preserved streams, intermediate streams and rural streams while the worst conditions were found in the urban streams. The significant Pearson correlations (r > 0.73 and P < 0.05 between the diversity of habitat index and the ecological and water quality index attributes in the streams of Jundiai demonstrated that diversity of habitat may be a good predictor of the environmental characteristics evaluated.

  8. Habitat typing versus advanced vegetation classification in western forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tony Kusbach; John Shaw; James Long; Helga Van Miegroet

    2012-01-01

    Major habitat and community types in northern Utah were compared with plant alliances and associations that were derived from fidelity- and diagnostic-species classification concepts. Each of these classification approaches was associated with important environmental factors. Within a 20,000-ha watershed, 103 forest ecosystems were described by physiographic features,...

  9. Growth rates of Porites astreoides and Orbicella franksi in mesophotic habitats surrounding St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groves, Sarah H.; Holstein, Daniel M.; Enochs, Ian C.; Kolodzeij, Graham; Manzello, Derek P.; Brandt, Marilyn E.; Smith, Tyler B.

    2018-06-01

    Mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs) are deep (> 30 m), light-dependent communities that are abundant in many parts of the global ocean. MCEs are potentially connected to shallow reefs via larval exchange and may act as refuges for reef organisms. However, MCE community level recovery after disturbance, and thus, community resilience, are poorly understood components of their capacity as refuges. To assess the potential for disturbance and growth to drive community structure on MCEs with differential biophysical conditions and coral communities, we collected colonies of Orbicella franksi and Porites astreoides and used computerized tomography to quantify calcification. The divergence of coral growth rates in MCEs with different environmental conditions may be species specific; habitat-forming O. franksi have slow and consistent growth rates of 0.2 cm yr-1 below 30 m, regardless of mesophotic habitat, compared to 1.0 cm yr-1 in shallow-water habitats. Slow skeletal growth rates in MCEs suggest that rates of recovery from disturbance will likely also be slow. Localized buffering of MCEs from the stressors affecting shallow reefs is therefore crucial to the long-term capacity of these sites to serve as refugia, given that skeletal extension and recovery from disturbance in MCEs will be significantly slower than on shallow reefs.

  10. Restricted cross-scale habitat selection by American beavers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francis, Robert A; Taylor, Jimmy D; Dibble, Eric; Strickland, Bronson; Petro, Vanessa M; Easterwood, Christine; Wang, Guiming

    2017-12-01

    Animal habitat selection, among other ecological phenomena, is spatially scale dependent. Habitat selection by American beavers Castor canadensis (hereafter, beaver) has been studied at singular spatial scales, but to date no research addresses multi-scale selection. Our objectives were to determine if beaver habitat selection was specialized to semiaquatic habitats and if variables explaining habitat selection are consistent between landscape and fine spatial scales. We built maximum entropy (MaxEnt) models to relate landscape-scale presence-only data to landscape variables, and used generalized linear mixed models to evaluate fine spatial scale habitat selection using global positioning system (GPS) relocation data. Explanatory variables between the landscape and fine spatial scale were compared for consistency. Our findings suggested that beaver habitat selection at coarse (study area) and fine (within home range) scales was congruent, and was influenced by increasing amounts of woody wetland edge density and shrub edge density, and decreasing amounts of open water edge density. Habitat suitability at the landscape scale also increased with decreasing amounts of grass frequency. As territorial, central-place foragers, beavers likely trade-off open water edge density (i.e., smaller non-forested wetlands or lodges closer to banks) for defense and shorter distances to forage and obtain construction material. Woody plants along edges and expanses of open water for predator avoidance may limit beaver fitness and subsequently determine beaver habitat selection.

  11. Does habitat variability really promote metabolic network modularity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemoto, Kazuhiro

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that variability in natural habitats promotes modular organization is widely accepted for cellular networks. However, results of some data analyses and theoretical studies have begun to cast doubt on the impact of habitat variability on modularity in metabolic networks. Therefore, we re-evaluated this hypothesis using statistical data analysis and current metabolic information. We were unable to conclude that an increase in modularity was the result of habitat variability. Although horizontal gene transfer was also considered because it may contribute for survival in a variety of environments, closely related to habitat variability, and is known to be positively correlated with network modularity, such a positive correlation was not concluded in the latest version of metabolic networks. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the previously observed increase in network modularity due to habitat variability and horizontal gene transfer was probably due to a lack of available data on metabolic reactions. Instead, we determined that modularity in metabolic networks is dependent on species growth conditions. These results may not entirely discount the impact of habitat variability and horizontal gene transfer. Rather, they highlight the need for a more suitable definition of habitat variability and a more careful examination of relationships of the network modularity with horizontal gene transfer, habitats, and environments.

  12. Revised Methods for Characterizing Stream Habitat in the National Water-Quality Assessment Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzpatrick, Faith A.; Waite, Ian R.; D'Arconte, Patricia J.; Meador, Michael R.; Maupin, Molly A.; Gurtz, Martin E.

    1998-01-01

    Stream habitat is characterized in the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program as part of an integrated physical, chemical, and biological assessment of the Nation's water quality. The goal of stream habitat characterization is to relate habitat to other physical, chemical, and biological factors that describe water-quality conditions. To accomplish this goal, environmental settings are described at sites selected for water-quality assessment. In addition, spatial and temporal patterns in habitat are examined at local, regional, and national scales. This habitat protocol contains updated methods for evaluating habitat in NAWQA Study Units. Revisions are based on lessons learned after 6 years of applying the original NAWQA habitat protocol to NAWQA Study Unit ecological surveys. Similar to the original protocol, these revised methods for evaluating stream habitat are based on a spatially hierarchical framework that incorporates habitat data at basin, segment, reach, and microhabitat scales. This framework provides a basis for national consistency in collection techniques while allowing flexibility in habitat assessment within individual Study Units. Procedures are described for collecting habitat data at basin and segment scales; these procedures include use of geographic information system data bases, topographic maps, and aerial photographs. Data collected at the reach scale include channel, bank, and riparian characteristics.

  13. Surface Habitat Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Kriss J.

    2009-01-01

    The Surface Habitat Systems (SHS) Focused Investment Group (FIG) is part of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Johnson Space Center (JSC) effort to provide a focused direction and funding to the various projects that are working on human surface habitat designs and technologies for the planetary exploration missions. The overall SHS-FIG effort focuses on directing and guiding those projects that: 1) develop and demonstrate new surface habitat system concepts, innovations, and technologies to support human exploration missions, 2) improve environmental systems that interact with human habitats, 3) handle and emplace human surface habitats, and 4) focus on supporting humans living and working in habitats on planetary surfaces. The activity areas of the SHS FIG described herein are focused on the surface habitat project near-term objectives as described in this document. The SHS-FIG effort focuses on mitigating surface habitat risks (as identified by the Lunar Surface Systems Project Office (LSSPO) Surface Habitat Element Team; and concentrates on developing surface habitat technologies as identified in the FY08 gap analysis. The surface habitat gap assessment will be updated annually as the surface architecture and surface habitat definition continues to mature. These technologies are mapped to the SHS-FIG Strategic Development Roadmap. The Roadmap will bring to light the areas where additional innovative efforts are needed to support the development of habitat concepts and designs and the development of new technologies to support of the LSSPO Habitation Element development plan. Three specific areas of development that address Lunar Architecture Team (LAT)-2 and Constellation Architecture Team (CxAT) Lunar habitat design issues or risks will be focused on by the SHS-FIG. The SHS-FIG will establish four areas of development that will help the projects prepare in their planning for surface habitat systems development. Those development areas are

  14. Riverine habitat dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, R.B.

    2013-01-01

    The physical habitat template is a fundamental influence on riverine ecosystem structure and function. Habitat dynamics refers to the variation in habitat through space and time as the result of varying discharge and varying geomorphology. Habitat dynamics can be assessed at spatial scales ranging from the grain (the smallest resolution at which an organism relates to its environment) to the extent (the broadest resolution inclusive of all space occupied during its life cycle). In addition to a potentially broad range of spatial scales, assessments of habitat dynamics may include dynamics of both occupied and nonoccupied habitat patches because of process interactions among patches. Temporal aspects of riverine habitat dynamics can be categorized into hydrodynamics and morphodynamics. Hydrodynamics refers to habitat variation that results from changes in discharge in the absence of significant change of channel morphology and at generally low sediment-transport rates. Hydrodynamic assessments are useful in cases of relatively high flow exceedance (percent of time a flow is equaled or exceeded) or high critical shear stress, conditions that are applicable in many studies of instream flows. Morphodynamics refers to habitat variation resulting from changes to substrate conditions or channel/floodplain morphology. Morphodynamic assessments are necessary when channel and floodplain boundary conditions have been significantly changed, generally by relatively rare flood events or in rivers with low critical shear stress. Morphodynamic habitat variation can be particularly important as disturbance mechanisms that mediate population growth or for providing conditions needed for reproduction, such as channel-migration events that erode cutbanks and provide new pointbar surfaces for germination of riparian trees. Understanding of habitat dynamics is increasing in importance as societal goals shift toward restoration of riverine ecosystems. Effective investment in restoration

  15. Trait-based approaches in the analysis of stream fish communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frimpong, Emmanuel; Angermeier, Paul

    2010-01-01

    Species traits are used to study the functional organization of fish communities for a range of reasons, from simply reducing data dimensionality to providing mechanistic explanations for observed variation in communities. Ecological and life history traits have been used to understand the basic ecology of fishes and predict (1) species and community responses to habitat and climate alteration, and (2) species extinction, species invasion, and community homogenization. Many approaches in this arena have been developed during the past three decades, but they often have not been integrated with related ecological concepts or subdisciplines, which has led to confusion in terminology. We review 102 studies of species traits and then summarize patterns in traits being used and questions being addressed with trait-based approaches. Overall, studies of fish–habitat relationships that apply habitat templates and hierarchical filters dominate our sample; the most frequently used traits are related to feeding. We define and show the relationships among key terms such as fundamental and realized niches; functional traits, performance, and fitness; tactic, trait-state, syndromes, and strategies; and guilds and functional groups. We propose accelerating research to (1) quantify trait plasticity, (2) identify traits useful for testing ecological hypotheses, (3) model habitat and biotic interactions in communities while explicitly accounting for phylogenetic relationships, (4) explore how traits control community assembly, and (5) document the importance of traits in fish– community responses to anthropogenic change and in delivering ecosystem services. Further synthesis of these topics is still needed to develop concepts, models, and principles that can unify the disparate approaches taken in trait-based analysis of fish communities, link fish community ecology to general community ecology, and inform sustainable management of ecosystems.

  16. Evaluating the effectiveness of restoring longitudinal connectivity for stream fish communities: towards a more holistic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tummers, Jeroen S; Hudson, Steve; Lucas, Martyn C

    2016-11-01

    A more holistic approach towards testing longitudinal connectivity restoration is needed in order to establish that intended ecological functions of such restoration are achieved. We illustrate the use of a multi-method scheme to evaluate the effectiveness of 'nature-like' connectivity restoration for stream fish communities in the River Deerness, NE England. Electric-fishing, capture-mark-recapture, PIT telemetry and radio-telemetry were used to measure fish community composition, dispersal, fishway efficiency and upstream migration respectively. For measuring passage and dispersal, our rationale was to evaluate a wide size range of strong swimmers (exemplified by brown trout Salmo trutta) and weak swimmers (exemplified by bullhead Cottus perifretum) in situ in the stream ecosystem. Radio-tracking of adult trout during the spawning migration showed that passage efficiency at each of five connectivity-restored sites was 81.3-100%. Unaltered (experimental control) structures on the migration route had a bottle-neck effect on upstream migration, especially during low flows. However, even during low flows, displaced PIT tagged juvenile trout (total n=153) exhibited a passage efficiency of 70.1-93.1% at two nature-like passes. In mark-recapture experiments juvenile brown trout and bullhead tagged (total n=5303) succeeded in dispersing upstream more often at most structures following obstacle modification, but not at the two control sites, based on a Laplace kernel modelling approach of observed dispersal distance and barrier traverses. Medium-term post-restoration data (2-3years) showed that the fish assemblage remained similar at five of six connectivity-restored sites and two control sites, but at one connectivity-restored headwater site previously inhabited by trout only, three native non-salmonid species colonized. We conclude that stream habitat reconnection should support free movement of a wide range of species and life stages, wherever retention of such

  17. Habitat preferences of ground beetle (Coleoptera: Carabidae) species in the northern Black Hills of South Dakota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergmann, David J; Brandenburg, Dylan; Petit, Samantha; Gabel, Mark

    2012-10-01

    Ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) are a major component of terrestrial invertebrate communities and have been used as bioindicators of habitat change and disturbance. The Black Hills of South Dakota is a small area with a high biodiversity, but the ground beetles of this region are little studied. The habitat preferences of ground beetles in the Black Hills are unknown, and baseline data must be collected if these beetles are to be used in the future as bioindicators. Ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) were collected from pitfall traps at two sites in each of five kinds of habitats (grassland, bur oak-ironwood forests, ponderosa pine-common juniper forests, aspen-pine forests, and a spruce forest) from which habitat structure characteristics and plant abundance data also were collected. In total, 27 species of ground beetles were identified. Although some species, such as Dicaelus sculptilis Say were found in most habitats, other species showed distinct habitat preferences: Poecilus lucublandus (Say) preferred oak forests, Pasimachus elongatus LeConte preferred grasslands, and Calathus ingratus Dejean preferred high-elevation aspen-pine forests. Pterostichus adstrictus Escholtz was found only in woodlands, and Carabus taedatus Say strictly in higher elevation (over 1,500 m) aspen or coniferous woods, and may represent relict populations of boreal species. Elevation, exposure to sunlight, and cover of woody plants strongly influence the structure of carabid communities in the Black Hills.

  18. Assessing habitat connectivity for ground-dwelling animals in an urban environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braaker, S; Moretti, M; Boesch, R; Ghazoul, J; Obrist, M K; Bontadina, F

    To ensure viable species populations in fragmented landscapes, individuals must be able to move between suitable habitat patches. Despite the increased interest in biodiversity assessment in urban environments, the ecological relevance of habitat connectivity in highly fragmented landscapes remains largely unknown. The first step to understanding the role of habitat connectivity in urban ecology is the challenging task of assessing connectivity in the complex patchwork of contrasting habitats that is found in cities. We developed a data-based framework, minimizing the use of subjective assumptions, to assess habitat connectivity that consists of the following sequential steps: (1) identification of habitat preference based on empirical habitat-use data; (2) derivation of habitat resistance surfaces evaluating various transformation functions; (3) modeling of different connectivity maps with electrical circuit theory (Circuitscape), a method considering all possible pathways across the landscape simultaneously; and (4) identification of the best connectivity map with information-theoretic model selection. We applied this analytical framework to assess habitat connectivity for the European hedgehog Erinaceus europaeus, a model species for ground-dwelling animals, in the city of Zurich, Switzerland, using GPS track points from 40 individuals. The best model revealed spatially explicit connectivity “pinch points,” as well as multiple habitat connections. Cross-validation indicated the general validity of the selected connectivity model. The results show that both habitat connectivity and habitat quality affect the movement of urban hedgehogs (relative importance of the two variables was 19.2% and 80.8%, respectively), and are thus both relevant for predicting urban animal movements. Our study demonstrates that even in the complex habitat patchwork of cities, habitat connectivity plays a major role for ground-dwelling animal movement. Data-based habitat connectivity

  19. Species’ traits help predict small mammal responses to habitat homogenization by an invasive grass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceradini, Joseph P.; Chalfoun, Anna D.

    2017-01-01

    Invasive plants can negatively affect native species, however, the strength, direction, and shape of responses may vary depending on the type of habitat alteration and the natural history of native species. To prioritize conservation of vulnerable species, it is therefore critical to effectively predict species’ responses to invasive plants, which may be facilitated by a framework based on species’ traits. We studied the population and community responses of small mammals and changes in habitat heterogeneity across a gradient of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) cover, a widespread invasive plant in North America. We live-trapped small mammals over two summers and assessed the effect of cheatgrass on native small mammal abundance, richness, and species-specific and trait-based occupancy, while accounting for detection probability and other key habitat elements. Abundance was only estimated for the most common species, deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). All species were pooled for the trait-based occupancy analysis to quantify the ability of small mammal traits (habitat association, mode of locomotion, and diet) to predict responses to cheatgrass invasion. Habitat heterogeneity decreased with cheatgrass cover. Deer mouse abundance increased marginally with cheatgrass. Species richness did not vary with cheatgrass, however, pocket mouse (Perognathus spp.) and harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys spp.) occupancy tended to decrease and increase, respectively, with cheatgrass cover, suggesting a shift in community composition. Cheatgrass had little effect on occupancy for deer mice, 13-lined ground squirrels (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), and Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii). Species’ responses to cheatgrass primarily corresponded with our a priori predictions based on species’ traits. The probability of occupancy varied significantly with a species’ habitat association but not with diet or mode of locomotion. When considered within the context of a rapid

  20. Quantitative phylogenetic assessment of microbial communities indiverse environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    von Mering, C.; Hugenholtz, P.; Raes, J.; Tringe, S.G.; Doerks,T.; Jensen, L.J.; Ward, N.; Bork, P.

    2007-01-01

    The taxonomic composition of environmental communities is an important indicator of their ecology and function. Here, we use a set of protein-coding marker genes, extracted from large-scale environmental shotgun sequencing data, to provide a more direct, quantitative and accurate picture of community composition than traditional rRNA-based approaches using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). By mapping marker genes from four diverse environmental data sets onto a reference species phylogeny, we show that certain communities evolve faster than others, determine preferred habitats for entire microbial clades, and provide evidence that such habitat preferences are often remarkably stable over time.

  1. Mapping and modelling the habitat of giant pandas in Foping Nature Reserve, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liu, X.

    2001-01-01

    The fact that only about 1000 giant pandas and 29500 km2 of panda habitat are left in the west part of China makes it an urgent issue to save this endangered animal species and protect its habitat. For effective conservation of the giant panda and its habitat, a thorough evaluation of panda habitat

  2. Evaluating the habitat of the critically endangered Kipunji monkey ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Effective conservation of threatened species requires a good understanding of their habitat. Most primates are threatened by tropical forest loss. One population of the critically endangered kipunji monkey Rungwecebus kipunji occurs in a restricted part of one forest in southern Tanzania. This restricted range is something of ...

  3. Addressing Different Approaches for Evaluating Low-Exergy Communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, S.C.; Meggers, Forrest; Heiselberg, Per Kvols

    2016-01-01

    The IEA Annex 64 focusing on low-ex communities aims at the improvement of energy conversion chains on a community scale, using exergy analysis as the primary evaluation mode. Within this Annex the participants discuss important aspects and available methods for energy and exergy assessment as well

  4. Marine habitat mapping at Labuan Marine Park, Federal Territory of Labuan, Malaysia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustajap, Fazliana; Saleh, Ejria; Madin, John; Hamid, Shahimah Abdul

    2015-06-01

    Marine habitat mapping has recently become essential in coastal marine science research. It is one of the efforts to understand marine ecosystems, and thus to protect them. Habitat mapping is integral to marine-related industries such as fisheries, aquaculture, forestry and tourism. An assessment of marine habitat mapping was conducted at Labuan Marine Park (LMP), a marine protected area in the Federal Territory of Labuan. It is surrounded by shallow water within its islands (Kuraman, Rusukan Kecil and Rusukan Besar) with an area of 39.7 km2. The objectives of the study are to identify the substrate and types of marine habitat present within the park. Side scan sonar (SSS) (Aquascan TM) was used to determine the substrates and habitat while ground truthings were done through field observation and SCUBA diving survey. Seabed classification and marine habitat was based on NOAA's biogeography program. Three substrate types (sand, rock, silt) were identified in this area. The major marine habitats identified are corals, macro algae and small patches of sea grass. The study area is an important refuge for spawning and juvenile fish and supports the livelihood of the coastal communities on Labuan Island. Therefore, proper management is crucial in order to better maintain the marine protected area. The findings are significant and provide detailed baseline information on marine habitat for conservation, protection and future management in LMP.

  5. Coral Community Structure and Recruitment in Seagrass Meadows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn E. Lohr

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Coral communities are increasingly found to populate non-reef habitats prone to high environmental variability. Such sites include seagrass meadows, which are generally not considered optimal habitats for corals as a result of limited suitable substrate for settlement and substantial diel and seasonal fluctuations in physicochemical conditions relative to neighboring reefs. Interest in understanding the ability of corals to persist in non-reef habitats has grown, however little baseline data exists on community structure and recruitment of scleractinian corals in seagrass meadows. To determine how corals populate seagrass meadows, we surveyed the established and recruited coral community over 25 months within seagrass meadows at Little Cayman, Cayman Islands. Simultaneous surveys of established and recruited coral communities at neighboring back-reef sites were conducted for comparison. To fully understand the amount of environmental variability to which corals in each habitat were exposed, we conducted complementary surveys of physicochemical conditions in both seagrass meadows and back-reefs. Despite overall higher variability in physicochemical conditions, particularly pH, compared to the back-reef, 14 coral taxa were capable of inhabiting seagrass meadows, and multiple coral families were also found to recruit to these sites. However, coral cover and species diversity, richness, and evenness were lower at sites within seagrass meadows compared to back-reef sites. Although questions remain regarding the processes governing recruitment, these results provide evidence that seagrass beds can serve as functional habitats for corals despite high levels of environmental variability and suboptimal conditions compared to neighboring reefs.

  6. Habitat-related specialization of lateral-line system morphology in a habitat-generalist and a habitat-specialist New Zealand eleotrid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderpham, J P; Nakagawa, S; Senior, A M; Closs, G P

    2016-04-01

    An investigation of intraspecific habitat-related patterns of variation in oculoscapular lateral-line superficial neuromasts (SN) identified a decrease in the ratio of total SNs to pores, and a trend towards decreased asymmetry in SNs in the habitat-generalist common bully Gobiomorphus cotidianus from fluvial habitats compared to lacustrine habitats, suggesting habitat-related phenotypic variability. A greater ratio of pores to SNs, as well as less variation in the total number and asymmetry of SNs observed in the fluvial habitat-specialist redfin bully Gobiomorphus huttoni may provide further evidence of variations in the oculoscapular lateral-line morphology of fluvial habitat G. cotidianus individuals serving as adaptations to more turbulent environments. © 2016 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  7. Characterization and Monitoring Data for Evaluating Constructed Emergent Sandbar Habitat in the Missouri River Mainstem 2004-2009

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duberstein, Corey A.

    2011-04-01

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) provides the primary operational management of the Missouri River Main Stem Reservoir System. Management of the Missouri River has generally reduced peak river flows that form and maintain emergent sandbar habitat. Emergent sandbars provide non-vegetated nesting habitat for the endangered interior least tern (Sternula antillarum athalassos) and the threatened Northern Great Plains piping plover (Charadrius melodus). Since 2000, piping plover nesting habitat within the Gavins Point Reach, Garrison Reach, Lake Oahe, and Lake Sakakawea has fledged the majority of piping plovers produced along the Missouri River system. Habitats within Lewis and Clark Lake have also recently become important plover production areas. Mechanical construction of emergent sandbar habitat (ESH) within some of these reaches within the Missouri River began in 2004. Through 2009, 11 sandbar complexes had been constructed (10 in Gavins Point Reach, 1 in Lewis and Clarke Lake) totaling about 543 ac of piping plover and interior least tern nesting habitat. ESH Construction has resulted in a net gain of tern and plover nesting habitat. Both terns and plovers successfully nest and fledge young on constructed sandbars, and constructed habitats were preferred over natural habitats. Natural processes may limit the viability of constructed sandbars as nesting habitat. Continued research is needed to identify if changes in constructed sandbar engineering and management increase the length of time constructed habitats effectively function as nesting habitat. However, the transfer of information from researchers to planners through technical research reports may not be timely enough to effectively foster the feedback mechanisms of an adaptive management strategy.

  8. BIOLOGICAL WATER QUALITY ASSESSMENT OF THE WHITECLAWED CRAYFISH HABITAT BASED ON MACROINVERTEBRATE COMMUNITIES: USEFULNESS FOR ITS CONSERVATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GRANDJEAN F.

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available A survey of the macroinvertebrates of three brooks harbouring the white-clawed crayfish was conducted in Haute-Vienne department (France. Its aim was to increase our understanding of these ecosystems to help the conservation of A. pallipes. These brooks run through pastoral areas with well-developed riparian vegetation, which offers an important shade. Water temperature, dissolved oxygen concentration, pH, and conductivity fell within the ranges found for this species. A total of 34, 31, 29 taxa and 1 502, 1 364, 2 707 individuals of macrobenthos were collected in Holme, Besque and Bellecombe streams, respectively. Results showed good to very good water quality with IBGN scores ranging from 15 (Bellecombe to 17 (Holme and Besque, reflecting a limited impact of the anthropogenic disturbances. Taxa diversity were high for Holme and Besque with Shannon index around 3.2, translating a great heterogeneity of habitat and an equilibrated faunal community. Bellecombe showed a limited diversity with Shannon index of 1.42, resulting from the presence of numberous Chironomidae. This brook suffers probably weak organic pollution which could be related to the low water flow observed during the sampling. The similarity test according to Jaccard index showed high percentage of common taxa among ETP (Ephemeroptera-Trichoptera-Plecoptera between all sites. The high similarity of benthic macroinvertebrate communities could be an useful criteria to identify brooks for restocking purpose.

  9. Habitat Maintenance and Local Economic Ethics in Rural Atlantic Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Karen

    2018-02-01

    Inspired by Jane Jacobs's writing on "habitat maintenance," this paper seeks to identify the ethics that sometimes compel rural residents to act in ways that preserve their communities in the long run, despite short-term incentives to do otherwise. Data from focus groups in four rural Atlantic Canadian communities suggest shared ethics around entrepreneurship, market competition, buying local, and subsistence, some of which underlie the rural practices and perspectives that appear, to some outsiders, as irrational and "backwards." Understanding these ethics and the practices they incite as components of habitat maintenance-and judging them by their situated pragmatism rather than their fit with the placeless ideologies of growth-centric global capitalism and competitiveness-highlights their rationality and utility. Findings could help direct discussions of rural economic development toward notions of prosperity, sustainability, and economy that fit better with rural realities. © 2018 Canadian Sociological Association/La Société canadienne de sociologie.

  10. Responses of riparian reptile communities to damming and urbanization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Stephanie D.; Guzy, Jacquelyn C.; Price, Steven J.; Halstead, Brian J.; Eskew, Evan A.; Dorcas, Michael E.

    2013-01-01

    Various anthropogenic pressures, including habitat loss, threaten reptile populations worldwide. Riparian zones are critical habitat for many reptile species, but these habitats are also frequently modified by anthropogenic activities. Our study investigated the effects of two riparian habitat modifications-damming and urbanization-on overall and species-specific reptile occupancy patterns. We used time-constrained search techniques to compile encounter histories for 28 reptile species at 21 different sites along the Broad and Pacolet Rivers of South Carolina. Using a hierarchical Bayesian analysis, we modeled reptile occupancy responses to a site's distance upstream from dam, distance downstream from dam, and percent urban land use. The mean occupancy response by the reptile community indicated that reptile occupancy and species richness were maximized when sites were farther upstream from dams. Species-specific occupancy estimates showed a similar trend of lower occupancy immediately upstream from dams. Although the mean occupancy response of the reptile community was positively related to distance downstream from dams, the occupancy response to distance downstream varied among species. Percent urban land use had little effect on the occupancy response of the reptile community or individual species. Our results indicate that the conditions of impoundments and subsequent degradation of the riparian zones upstream from dams may not provide suitable habitat for a number of reptile species.

  11. Effects of coal mining, forestry, and road construction on southern Appalachian stream invertebrates and habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangloff, Michael M; Perkins, Michael; Blum, Peter W; Walker, Craig

    2015-03-01

    Coal has been extracted via surface and sub-surface mining for decades throughout the Appalachian Mountains. New interest in ridge-top mining has raised concerns about possible waterway impacts. We examined effects of forestry, mining, and road construction-based disturbance on physico-chemistry and macroinvertebrate communities in east-central Tennessee headwater streams. Although 11 of 30 sites failed Tennessee's biocriteria scoring system, invertebrate richness was moderately high and we did not find significant differences in any water chemistry or habitat parameters between sites with passing and failing scores. However, conductivity and dissolved solid concentrations appeared elevated in the majority of study streams. Principal components (PCs) analysis indicated that six PCs accounted for ~77 % of among-site habitat variability. One PC associated with dissolved oxygen and specific conductance explained the second highest proportion of among-site variability after catchment area. Specific conductance was not correlated with catchment area but was strongly correlated with mining activity. Composition and success of multivariate models using habitat PCs to predict macroinvertebrate metrics was highly variable. PC scores associated with water chemistry and substrate composition were most frequently included in significant models. These results suggest that impacts of historical and current coal mining remain a source of water quality and macroinvertebrate community impairment in this region, but effects are subtle. Our results suggest that surface mining may have chronic and system-wide effects on habitat conditions and invertebrate communities in Cumberland Plateau streams.

  12. Sensitivity of heterogeneous marine benthic habitats to subtle stressors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iván F Rodil

    Full Text Available It is important to understand the consequences of low level disturbances on the functioning of ecological communities because of the pervasiveness and frequency of this type of environmental change. In this study we investigated the response of a heterogeneous, subtidal, soft-sediment habitat to small experimental additions of organic matter and calcium carbonate to examine the sensitivity of benthic ecosystem functioning to changes in sediment characteristics that relate to the environmental threats of coastal eutrophication and ocean acidification. Our results documented significant changes between key biogeochemical and sedimentary variables such as gross primary production, ammonium uptake and dissolved reactive phosphorus flux following treatment additions. Moreover, the application of treatments affected relationships between macrofauna communities, sediment characteristics (e.g., chlorophyll a content and biogeochemical processes (oxygen and nutrient fluxes. In this experiment organic matter and calcium carbonate showed persistent opposing effects on sedimentary processes, and we demonstrated that highly heterogeneous sediment habitats can be surprisingly sensitive to subtle perturbations. Our results have important biological implications in a world with relentless anthropogenic inputs of atmospheric CO2 and nutrients in coastal waters.

  13. Watershed evaluation and habitat response to recent storms : annual report for 1998; ANNUAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huntington, Charles W.; Rhodes, Jonathan J.

    1999-01-01

    Large and powerful storm systems moved through the Pacific Northwest during the wet season of 1995-96, triggering widespread flooding, mass erosion, and, possibly altering salmon habitats in affected watersheds. This project study was initiated to assess whether watershed conditions are causing damage, triggered by storm events, to salmon habitat on public lands in the Snake River basin

  14. Evaluation of habitat restoration needs at Yucca Mountain, Nevada Test Site, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mitchell, D.L.

    1984-04-01

    Adverse environmental impacts due to site characterization and repository development activities at Yucca Mountain, Nevada Test Site (NTS), Nye County, Nevada, must be minimized and mitigated according to provisions of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) of 1982 and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The natural Transition Desert ecosystem in the 27.5-sq-mi Yucca Mountain project area is now and will continue to be impacted by removal of native vegetation and topsoil and the destruction and/or displacement of faunal communities. Although it is not known at this time exactly how much land will be affected, it is estimated that about 300 to 400 acres will be disturbed by construction of facility sites, mining spoils piles, roadways, and drilling pads. Planned habitat restoration at Yucca Mountain will mitigate the effects of plant and animal habitat loss over time by increasing the rate of plant succession on disturbed sites. Restoration program elements should combine the appropriate use of native annual and perennial species, irrigation and/or water-harvesting techniques, and salvage and reuse of topsoil. Although general techniques are well-known, specific program details (i.e., which species to use, methods of site preparation with available equipment, methods of saving and applying topsoil, etc.) must be worked out empirically on a site-specific basis over the period of site characterization and any subsequent repository development. Large-scale demonstration areas set up during site characterization will benefit both present abandonments and, if the project is scaled up to include repository development, larger facilities areas including spoils piles. Site-specific demonstration studies will also provide information on the costs per acre associated with alternative restoration strategies

  15. Diverse habitat use during two life stages of the critically endangered Bahama Oriole (Icterus northropi: community structure, foraging, and social interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa R. Price

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Our ability to prevent extinction in declining populations often depends on effective management of habitats that are disturbed through wildfire, logging, agriculture, or development. In these disturbed landscapes, the juxtaposition of multiple habitat types can be especially important to fledglings and young birds, which may leave breeding grounds in human-altered habitat for different habitats nearby that provide increased foraging opportunities, reduced competition, and higher protection from predators. In this study, we evaluated the importance of three habitat types to two life stages of the critically endangered Bahama Oriole (Icterus northropi, a synanthropic songbird endemic to Andros, The Bahamas. First, we determined the avian species composition and relative abundance of I. northropi among three major vegetation types on Andros: Caribbean pine (Pinus caribaea forest, coppice (broadleaf dry forest, and anthropogenic areas, dominated by nonnative vegetation (farmland and developed land. We then compared the foraging strategies and social interactions of two age classes of adult Bahama Orioles in relation to differential habitat use. Bird surveys late in the Bahama Oriole’s breeding season indicated the number of avian species and Bahama Oriole density were highest in coppice. Some bird species occurring in the coppice and pine forest were never observed in agricultural or residential areas, and may be at risk if human disturbance of pine forest and coppice increases, as is occurring at a rapid pace on Andros. During the breeding season, second-year (SY adult Bahama Orioles foraged in all vegetation types, whereas after-second-year (ASY adults were observed foraging only in anthropogenic areas, where the species nested largely in introduced coconut palms (Cocos nucifera. Additionally, SY adults foraging in anthropogenic areas were often observed with an ASY adult, suggesting divergent habitat use for younger, unpaired birds. Other

  16. Red list assessment of European habitat types. A feasibility study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodwell, J.S.; Janssen, J.A.M.; Gubbay, S.; Schaminee, J.H.J.

    2013-01-01

    This report presents an achievable methodology for the Red List assessment of European habitats in terrestrial, freshwater and marine realms, outlines a process that will deliver such evaluations and gives an indication of resources needed. It shows how the EUNIS habitat classification can be

  17. Habitat properties are key drivers of Borrelia burgdorferi (s.l.) prevalence in Ixodes ricinus populations of deciduous forest fragments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrmann, Steffen; Ruyts, Sanne C; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Bauhus, Jürgen; Brunet, Jörg; Cousins, Sara A O; Deconchat, Marc; Decocq, Guillaume; De Frenne, Pieter; De Smedt, Pallieter; Diekmann, Martin; Gallet-Moron, Emilie; Gärtner, Stefanie; Hansen, Karin; Kolb, Annette; Lenoir, Jonathan; Lindgren, Jessica; Naaf, Tobias; Paal, Taavi; Panning, Marcus; Prinz, Maren; Valdés, Alicia; Verheyen, Kris; Wulf, Monika; Liira, Jaan

    2018-01-08

    The tick Ixodes ricinus has considerable impact on the health of humans and other terrestrial animals because it transmits several tick-borne pathogens (TBPs) such as B. burgdorferi (sensu lato), which causes Lyme borreliosis (LB). Small forest patches of agricultural landscapes provide many ecosystem services and also the disservice of LB risk. Biotic interactions and environmental filtering shape tick host communities distinctively between specific regions of Europe, which makes evaluating the dilution effect hypothesis and its influence across various scales challenging. Latitude, macroclimate, landscape and habitat properties drive both hosts and ticks and are comparable metrics across Europe. Therefore, we instead assess these environmental drivers as indicators and determine their respective roles for the prevalence of B. burgdorferi in I. ricinus. We sampled I. ricinus and measured environmental properties of macroclimate, landscape and habitat quality of forest patches in agricultural landscapes along a European macroclimatic gradient. We used linear mixed models to determine significant drivers and their relative importance for nymphal and adult B. burgdorferi prevalence. We suggest a new prevalence index, which is pool-size independent. During summer months, our prevalence index varied between 0 and 0.4 per forest patch, indicating a low to moderate disservice. Habitat properties exerted a fourfold larger influence on B. burgdorferi prevalence than macroclimate and landscape properties combined. Increasingly available ecotone habitat of focal forest patches diluted and edge density at landscape scale amplified B. burgdorferi prevalence. Indicators of habitat attractiveness for tick hosts (food resources and shelter) were the most important predictors within habitat patches. More diverse and abundant macro- and microhabitat had a diluting effect, as it presumably diversifies the niches for tick-hosts and decreases the probability of contact between ticks

  18. Seasonal sediment dynamics shape temperate bedrock reef communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figurski, Jared D.; Freiwald, Jan; Lonhart, Steve I.; Storlazzi, Curt

    2016-01-01

    Mobilized seafloor sediment can impact benthic reef communities through burial, scour, and turbidity. These processes are ubiquitous in coastal oceans and, through their influence on the survival, fitness, and interactions of species, can alter the structure and function of benthic communities. In northern Monterey Bay, California, USA, as much as 30% of the seafloor is buried or exposed seasonally, making this an ideal location to test how subtidal temperate rocky reef communities vary in the presence and absence of chronic sediment-based disturbances. Designated dynamic plots were naturally inundated by sediment in summer (50 to 100% cover) and swept clean in winter, whereas designated stable plots remained free of sediment during our study. Multivariate analyses indicated significant differences in the structure of sessile and mobile communities between dynamic and stable reef habitats. For sessile species, community structure in disturbed plots was less variable in space and time than in stable plots due to the maintenance of an early successional state. In contrast, community structure of mobile species varied more in disturbed plots than in stable plots, reflecting how mobile species distribute in response to sediment dynamics. Some species were found only in these disturbed areas, suggesting that the spatial mosaic of disturbance could increase regional diversity. We discuss how the relative ability of species to tolerate disturbance at different life history stages and their ability to colonize habitat translate into community-level differences among habitats, and how this response varies between mobile and sessile communities.

  19. Life stage and species identity affect whether habitat subsidies enhance or simply redistribute consumer biomass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Danielle A; Gittman, Rachel K; Bouchillon, Rachel K; Fodrie, F Joel

    2017-10-01

    Quantifying the response of mobile consumers to changes in habitat availability is essential for determining the degree to which population-level productivity is habitat limited rather than regulated by other, potentially density-independent factors. Over landscape scales, this can be explored by monitoring changes in density and foraging as habitat availability varies. As habitat availability increases, densities may: (1) decrease (unit-area production decreases; weak habitat limitation); (2) remain stable (unit-area production remains stable; habitat limitation) or (3) increase (unit-area production increases; strong habitat limitation). We tested the response of mobile estuarine consumers over 5 months to changes in habitat availability in situ by comparing densities and feeding rates on artificial reefs that were or were not adjacent to neighbouring artificial reefs or nearby natural reefs. Using either constructed or natural reefs to manipulate habitat availability, we documented threefold density decreases among juvenile stone crabs as habitat increased (i.e. weak habitat imitation). However, for adult stone crabs, density remained stable across treatments, demonstrating that habitat limitation presents a bottleneck in this species' later life history. Oyster toadfish densities also did not change with increasing habitat availability (i.e. habitat limitation), but densities of other cryptic fishes decreased as habitat availability increased (i.e. weak limitation). Feeding and abundance data suggested that some mobile fishes experience habitat limitation, or, potentially in one case, strong limitation across our habitat manipulations. These findings of significant, community-level habitat limitation provide insight into how global declines in structurally complex estuarine habitats may have reduced the fishery production of coastal ecosystems. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2017 British Ecological Society.

  20. Bats and bat habitats : guidelines for wind power projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2010-03-01

    Bat mortality has been documented at wind power projects in a number of habitats across North America. Wind power projects in Ontario have reported annual estimates ranging from 4 to 14 bat mortalities per turbine per year. This document presented guidance on identifying and addressing potential negative effects on bats and bat habitats during the planning, construction, and operation of wind power projects in Ontario. The guidelines supported the Ministry of Environment's renewable energy approval regulation and applied on both Crown and privately-owned land. The document presented the regulatory framework and discussed the assessment process for bats and bat habitats. This process included project site; records review; site investigation; and evaluation of significance. Other topics that were presented included an environmental impact study and an environmental effects monitoring plan such as post construction monitoring and post construction mitigation. Several appendices were also included regarding the potential effects of wind power project on bats; best management practices; methods for evaluating bat wildlife habitat; and post construction monitoring methods. 10 refs., 1 tab., 2 figs., 4 appendices.

  1. Bats and bat habitats : guidelines for wind power projects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2010-03-15

    Bat mortality has been documented at wind power projects in a number of habitats across North America. Wind power projects in Ontario have reported annual estimates ranging from 4 to 14 bat mortalities per turbine per year. This document presented guidance on identifying and addressing potential negative effects on bats and bat habitats during the planning, construction, and operation of wind power projects in Ontario. The guidelines supported the Ministry of Environment's renewable energy approval regulation and applied on both Crown and privately-owned land. The document presented the regulatory framework and discussed the assessment process for bats and bat habitats. This process included project site; records review; site investigation; and evaluation of significance. Other topics that were presented included an environmental impact study and an environmental effects monitoring plan such as post construction monitoring and post construction mitigation. Several appendices were also included regarding the potential effects of wind power project on bats; best management practices; methods for evaluating bat wildlife habitat; and post construction monitoring methods. 10 refs., 1 tab., 2 figs., 4 appendices.

  2. Ecology of Juvenile Salmonids in Shallow Tidal Freshwater Habitats in the Vicinity of the Sandy River Delta, Lower Columbia River, 2007 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sobocinski, Kathryn; Johnson, Gary; Sather, Nichole [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

    2008-03-17

    This document is the first annual report for the study titled 'Ecology of Juvenile Salmonids in Shallow Tidal Freshwater Habitats in the Vicinity of the Sandy River Delta in the Lower Columbia River'. Hereafter, we refer to this research as the Tidal Freshwater Monitoring (TFM) Study. The study is part of the research, monitoring, and evaluation effort developed by the Action Agencies (Bonneville Power Administration, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation) in response to obligations arising from the Endangered Species Act as a result of operation of the Federal Columbia River Power System (FCRPS). The project is performed under the auspices of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council's Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program. The goal of the 2007-2009 Tidal Freshwater Monitoring Study is to answer the following questions: In what types of habitats within the tidal freshwater area of the lower Columbia River and estuary (LCRE; Figure 1) are yearling and subyearling salmonids found, when are they present, and under what environmental conditions?1 And, what is the ecological importance2 of shallow (0-5 m) tidal freshwater habitats to the recovery of Upper Columbia River spring Chinook salmon and steelhead and Snake River fall Chinook salmon? Research in 2007 focused mainly on the first question, with fish stock identification data providing some indication of Chinook salmon presence at the variety of habitat types sampled. The objectives and sub-objectives for the 2007 study were as follows: (1) Habitat and Fish Community Characteristics-Provide basic data on habitat and fish community characteristics for yearling and subyearling salmonids at selected sites in the tidal freshwater reach in the vicinity of the Sandy River delta. (1a) Characterize vegetation assemblage percent cover, conventional water quality, substrate composition, and beach slope at each of six sampling sites in various tidal freshwater habitat types. (1b

  3. Participatory evaluation of community actions as a learning methodology for personal and community empowerment: case studies and empowerment processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xavier Úcar Martínez

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Participatory evaluation (PE is a hybrid methodology that can be used simultaneously to investigate and act in groups and communities. It can generate new knowledge about reality, but italso allows changes in the participants and their sociocultural context. This research project, developed over three years, aims to find out whether PE processes are useful and appropriate to evaluate community actionsand to generate learning that contribute to the empowerment of people who develop them.Method: The methodological structure of the research process design Participatory Evaluation processes that are applied in three selected communities-cases, over one year. The steering groups in each caseevaluated four dimensions of Community Development Plans: context, evolution, performance and results, using different techniques and group dynamics. Throughout this process, participants identify the acquiredknowledge and this is linked to indicators of empowerment, using questionnaires, content analysis and semi-structured interviews.Results: The development PE process in the three analyzed cases confirmed that PE is a useful strategy to assess participatory community actions of a territory; to report them to the people of the community; andto make shared decisions, about initiatives in order to improve community actions. The obtained results also verify that, throughout PE, there has been learning in the participants.Conclusions: The involvement of community members in the evaluation makes it more useful, fairer and more valid, but also a fourth positive consequence of PE is empowerment. From the process and the resultsof these cases of Participatory Evaluation, we consider that community EP is social transformation.

  4. Long term study on the effect of mollusciciding with niclosamide in stream habitats on the transmission of schistosomiasis mansoni after community-based chemotherapy in Makueni District, Kenya

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kariuki, Henry C.; Madsen, Henry; Ouma, John H.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Schistosoma mansoni infection is a persistent public health problem in many Kenyan communities. Although praziquantel is available, re-infection after chemotherapy treatment is inevitable, especially among children. Chemotherapy followed by intermittent mollusciciding of habitats...... rainfall data were collected monthly, and annual parasitological surveys were undertaken in each village. The mollusciciding protocol was adapted to local conditions, and simplified to improve prospects for widespread application. RESULTS: After the initial reduction in prevalence attributable...

  5. Declines in a ground-dwelling arthropod community during an invasion by Sahara mustard (Brassica tournefortii) in aeolian sand habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heather L. Hulton VanTassel; Anne M. Hansen; Cameron W. Barrows; Quresh Latif; Margaret W. Simon; Kurt E. Anderson

    2014-01-01

    Sahara Mustard (Brassica tournefortii; hereafter mustard), an exotic plant species, has invaded habitats throughout the arid southwestern United States. Mustard has reached high densities across aeolian sand habitats of southwestern deserts, including five distinct sand habitats in the eastern Coachella Valley, California. We examined trends in ground-dwelling...

  6. Balancing the risks of habitat alteration and environmental contamination in a contaminated forested wetland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bleiler, J.A.; Daukas, G.; Richardson, N.

    1994-01-01

    The North Lawrence Oil Dump Site (NLODS) is an inactive hazardous waste site located adjacent to an extensive palustrine forested wetland in upstate New York. Waste oil and oil sludge were disposed of in a lagoon adjacent to the wetland during the 1960s. During periods of high water, oils escaped from the lagoon and were transported into the wetlands. High concentrations of lead and PCBs were detected in NLODS wetland sediments, and contaminants from the site were present in wetland's plant and animal tissues. However, contaminated portions of the wetlands appear to be physically undisturbed and provide high quality wildlife habitat. The results of an ecological risk assessment indicated that lead and PCB contamination in NLODS sediment may be impacting some components of the wetlands community. The risk management process considered both the toxicological risks associated with lead and PCB contamination, as well as the significant habitat destruction risks associated with remediation. Six potential PCB target cleanup levels were evaluated. Following removal of sediments with PCB contamination greater than 0.5 mg/kg, 3.5 acres of sediment with lead contamination in excess of 250 mg/kg (the New York State ''Severe Effect Level'') would remain. More than 1.5 of these acres would contain lead concentrations in excess of 1,000 mg/kg. Reducing lead levels to background concentrations would require more than 50 acres of wetlands alteration. The Record of Decision at the NLODS recognized the high quality habitat provided by the site's wetlands, and attempted to balance the risks from habitat alteration with the risks of environmental contamination

  7. Amphibian and reptile communities in eleven Sites of Community Importance (SCI: relations between SCI area, heterogeneity and richness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Canova

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Seven species of amphibians and reptiles were observed in eleven Sites of Community Importance (SCI of the Lodi Province (NW Italy. Distribution and relative abundance of amphibians appeared more variable than reptiles. Some species of conservation concern as R. latastei were influenced by habitat physiognomy, i.e. the surface of wooded areas are important in predict presence and relative abundance of this species. SCI with wider surfaces and higher habitat heterogeneity included higher number of species. Species richness, here considered as a raw index of biodiversity value and community quality, was significantly related to SCI area and habitat heterogeneity; since this significant positive relation is confirmed both for amphibians and reptiles we suggest that, in planning of natural areas, priority must be retained for biotopes able to host the higher number of species.

  8. Composition and abundance of small mammal communities in forest fragments and vegetation corridors in Southern Minas Gerais, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andréa O. Mesquita

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Habitat fragmentation leads to isolation and reduce habitat areas, in addition to a series of negative effects on natural populations, affecting richness, abundance and distribution of animal species. In such a text, habitat corridors serve as an alternative for connectivity in fragmented landscapes, minimizing the effects of structural isolation of different habitat areas. This study evaluated the richness, composition and abundance of small mammal communities in forest fragments and in the relevant vegetation corridors that connect these fragments, located in Southern Minas Gerais, Southeastern Brazil. Ten sites were sampled (five forest fragments and five vegetation corridors using the capture-mark-recapture method, from April 2007-March 2008. A total sampling effort of 6 300 trapnights resulted in 656 captures of 249 individuals. Across the 10 sites sampled, 11 small mammal species were recorded. Multidimensional scaling (MDS ordinations and ANOSIM based on the composition of small mammal communities within the corridor and fragment revealed a qualitative difference between the two environments. Regarding abundance, there was no significant difference between corridors and fragments. In comparing mean values of abundance per species in each environment, only Cerradomys subflavus showed a significant difference, being more abundant in the corridor environment. Results suggest that the presence of several small mammal species in the corridor environment, in relatively high abundances, could indicate corridors use as habitat, though they might also facilitate and/or allow the movement of individuals using different habitat patches (fragments.

  9. Asian elephants in China: estimating population size and evaluating habitat suitability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Zhang

    Full Text Available We monitored the last remaining Asian elephant populations in China over the past decade. Using DNA tools and repeat genotyping, we estimated the population sizes from 654 dung samples collected from various areas. Combined with morphological individual identifications from over 6,300 elephant photographs taken in the wild, we estimated that the total Asian elephant population size in China is between 221 and 245. Population genetic structure and diversity were examined using a 556-bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA, and 24 unique haplotypes were detected from DNA analysis of 178 individuals. A phylogenetic analysis revealed two highly divergent clades of Asian elephants, α and β, present in Chinese populations. Four populations (Mengla, Shangyong, Mengyang, and Pu'Er carried mtDNA from the α clade, and only one population (Nangunhe carried mtDNA belonging to the β clade. Moreover, high genetic divergence was observed between the Nangunhe population and the other four populations; however, genetic diversity among the five populations was low, possibly due to limited gene flow because of habitat fragmentation. The expansion of rubber plantations, crop cultivation, and villages along rivers and roads had caused extensive degradation of natural forest in these areas. This had resulted in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and had formed artificial barriers that inhibited elephant migration. Using Geographic Information System, Global Positioning System, and Remote Sensing technology, we found that the area occupied by rubber plantations, tea farms, and urban settlements had dramatically increased over the past 40 years, resulting in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and forming artificial barriers that inhibit elephant migration. The restoration of ecological corridors to facilitate gene exchange among isolated elephant populations and the establishment of cross-boundary protected areas between China and Laos to secure

  10. Vegetation community change points suggest that critical loads of nutrient nitrogen may be too high

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkins, Kayla; Aherne, Julian; Bleasdale, Andy

    2016-12-01

    It is widely accepted that elevated nitrogen deposition can have detrimental effects on semi-natural ecosystems, including changes to plant diversity. Empirical critical loads of nutrient nitrogen have been recommended to protect many sensitive European habitats from significant harmful effects. In this study, we used Threshold Indicator Taxa Analysis (TITAN) to investigate shifts in vegetation communities along an atmospheric nitrogen deposition gradient for twenty-two semi-natural habitat types (as described under Annex I of the European Union Habitats Directive) in Ireland. Significant changes in vegetation community, i.e., change points, were determined for twelve habitats, with seven habitats showing a decrease in the number of positive indicator species. Community-level change points indicated a decrease in species abundance along a nitrogen deposition gradient ranging from 3.9 to 15.3 kg N ha-1 yr-1, which were significantly lower than recommended critical loads (Wilcoxon signed-rank test; V = 6, p < 0.05). These results suggest that lower critical loads of empirical nutrient nitrogen deposition may be required to protect many European habitats. Changes to vegetation communities may mean a loss of sensitive indicator species and potentially rare species in these habitats, highlighting how emission reductions policies set under the National Emissions Ceilings Directive may be directly linked to meeting the goal set out under th