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Sample records for ghats biodiversity hotspot

  1. in Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    A study has showed annual rate of deforestation as 1.34 in the southern part of the Western Ghats from 1973 to. 1995 (Jha et al. 2000). Annual deforestation rate of ..... over time. In order to manage mapping errors propagated through the analyses of change, all the digital datasets were resampled to 56 m before proceeding ...

  2. Checklist of the earthworms (Oligochaeta) of Kerala, a constituent of Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanan, S Prasanth; Sathrumithra, S; Christopher, G; Thomas, A P; Julka, J M

    2016-11-15

    A checklist of earthworm species hitherto known from Kerala, a constituent of the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot in India, is presented. In total, 88 species and subspecies are recorded, of which 55 are Kerala endemics, 9 near endemics, 14 exotics and 10 native peregrines. These belong to 26 genera and 9 families. The checklist includes the literature citation to the original description, type locality, any significant subsequent generic placements, and the district distributional pattern for each species/ subspecies.

  3. Assessment and monitoring of long-term forest cover changes (1920-2013) in Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, C. Sudhakar; Jha, C. S.; Dadhwal, V. K.

    2016-02-01

    Western Ghats are considered as one of the global biodiversity hotspots. There is an information gap on conservation status of the biodiversity hotspots. This study has quantified estimates of deforestation in the Western Ghats over a period of past nine decades. The classified forest cover maps for 1920, 1975, 1985, 1995, 2005 and 2013 indicates 95,446 (73.1%), 63,123 (48.4%), 62,286 (47.7%), 61,551 (47.2%), 61,511 (47.1%) and 61,511 km2 (47.1%) of the forest area, respectively. The rates of deforestation have been analyzed in different time phases, i.e., 1920-1975, 1975-1985, 1985-1995, 1995-2005 and 2005-2013. The grid cells of 1 km2 have been generated for time series analysis and describing spatial changes in forests. The net rate of deforestation was found to be 0.75 during 1920-1975, 0.13 during 1975-1985, 0.12 during 1985-1995 and 0.01 during 1995-2005. Overall forest loss in Western Ghats was estimated as 33,579 km2 (35.3% of the total forest) from 1920's to 2013. Land use change analysis indicates highest transformation of forest to plantations, followed by agriculture and degradation to scrub. The dominant forest type is tropical semi-evergreen which comprises 21,678 km2 (35.2%) of the total forest area of Western Ghats, followed by wet evergreen forest (30.6%), moist deciduous forest (24.8%) and dry deciduous forest (8.1%) in 2013. Even though it has the highest population density among the hotspots, there is no quantifiable net rate of deforestation from 2005 to 2013 which indicates increased measures of conservation.

  4. New species and new records of earthworms of the genus Drawida from Kerala part of the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot, India (Oligochaeta, Moniligastridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanan, S Prasanth; Sathrumithra, S; Christopher, G; Julka, J M

    2017-01-01

    Two new species of Drawida Michaelsen, 1900, namely Drawida polydiverticulata Narayanan & Julka, sp. n. and Drawida thomasi Narayanan & Julka, sp. n. , are described from material collected from the Indian state of Kerala, which lies in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot. Drawida elegans Rao, 1921, Drawida kanarensis Stephenson, 1917, Drawida modesta Rao, 1921, Drawida somavarpatana Rao, 1921, and Drawida thurstoni Gates, 1945 are recorded for the first time from the state.

  5. Ecological niche modeling for conservation planning of an endemic snail in the verge of becoming a pest in cardamom plantations in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sen, Sandeep; Shivaprakash, Kadukothanahally Nagaraju; Aravind, Neelavara A; Ravikanth, Gudasalamani; Dayanandan, Selvadurai

    2016-09-01

    Conservation managers and policy makers are often confronted with a challenging dilemma of devising suitable strategies to maintain agricultural productivity while conserving endemic species that at the early stages of becoming pests of agricultural crops. Identification of environmental factors conducive to species range expansion for forecasting species distribution patterns will play a central role in devising management strategies to minimize the conflict between the agricultural productivity and biodiversity conservation. Here, we present results of a study that predicts the distribution of Indrella ampulla , a snail endemic to the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot, which is becoming a pest in cardamom ( Ellettaria cardamomum ) plantations. We determined the distribution patterns and niche overlap between I. ampulla and Ellettaria cardamomum using maximum entropy (MaxEnt) niche modeling techniques under current and future (2020-2080) climatic scenarios. The results showed that climatic (precipitation of coldest quarter and isothermality) and soil (cation exchange capacity of soil [CEC]) parameters are major factors that determine the distribution of I. ampulla in Western Ghats. The model predicted cardamom cultivation areas in southern Western Ghats are highly sensitive to invasion of I. ampulla under both present and future climatic conditions. While the land area in the central Western Ghats is predicted to become unsuitable for I. ampulla and Ellettaria cardamomum in future, we found 71% of the Western Ghats land area is suitable for Ellettaria cardamomum cultivation and 45% suitable for I. ampulla , with an overlap of 35% between two species. The resulting distribution maps are invaluable for policy makers and conservation managers to design and implement management strategies minimizing the conflicts to sustain agricultural productivity while maintaining biodiversity in the region.

  6. Genetic Structure, Diversity and Long Term Viability of a Medicinal Plant, Nothapodytes nimmoniana Graham. (Icacinaceae), in Protected and Non-Protected Areas in the Western Ghats Biodiversity Hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shivaprakash, K Nagaraju; Ramesha, B Thimmappa; Uma Shaanker, Ramanan; Dayanandan, Selvadurai; Ravikanth, Gudasalamani

    2014-01-01

    The harvesting of medicinal plants from wild sources is escalating in many parts of the world, compromising the long-term survival of natural populations of medicinally important plants and sustainability of sources of raw material to meet pharmaceutical industry needs. Although protected areas are considered to play a central role in conservation of plant genetic resources, the effectiveness of protected areas for maintaining medicinal plant populations subject to intense harvesting pressure remain largely unknown. We conducted genetic and demographic studies of Nothapodytes nimmoniana Graham, one of the extensively harvested medicinal plant species in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot, India to assess the effectiveness of protected areas in long-term maintenance of economically important plant species. The analysis of adults and seedlings of N. nimmoniana in four protected and four non-protected areas using 7 nuclear microsatellite loci revealed that populations that are distributed within protected areas are subject to lower levels of harvesting and maintain higher genetic diversity (He = 0.816, Ho = 0.607, A = 18.857) than populations in adjoining non-protected areas (He = 0.781, Ho = 0.511, A = 15.571). Furthermore, seedlings in protected areas had significantly higher observed heterozygosity (Ho = 0.630) and private alleles as compared to seedlings in adjoining non-protected areas (Ho = 0.426). Most populations revealed signatures of recent genetic bottleneck. The prediction of long-term maintenance of genetic diversity using BOTTLESIM indicated that current population sizes of the species are not sufficient to maintain 90% of present genetic diversity for next 100 years. Overall, these results highlight the need for establishing more protected areas encompassing a large number of adult plants in the Western Ghats to conserve genetic diversity of economically and medicinally important plant species.

  7. Genetic structure and demographic history of the endangered tree species Dysoxylum malabaricum (Meliaceae) in Western Ghats, India: implications for conservation in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodare, Sofia; Tsuda, Yoshiaki; Ravikanth, Gudasalamani; Uma Shaanker, Ramanan; Lascoux, Martin

    2013-09-01

    The impact of fragmentation by human activities on genetic diversity of forest trees is an important concern in forest conservation, especially in tropical forests. Dysoxylum malabaricum (white cedar) is an economically important tree species, endemic to the Western Ghats, India, one of the world's eight most important biodiversity hotspots. As D. malabaricum is under pressure of disturbance and fragmentation together with overharvesting, conservation efforts are required in this species. In this study, range-wide genetic structure of twelve D. malabaricum populations was evaluated to assess the impact of human activities on genetic diversity and infer the species' evolutionary history, using both nuclear and chloroplast (cp) DNA simple sequence repeats (SSR). As genetic diversity and population structure did not differ among seedling, juvenile and adult age classes, reproductive success among the old-growth trees and long distance seed dispersal by hornbills were suggested to contribute to maintain genetic diversity. The fixation index (F IS) was significantly correlated with latitude, with a higher level of inbreeding in the northern populations, possibly reflecting a more severe ecosystem disturbance in those populations. Both nuclear and cpSSRs revealed northern and southern genetic groups with some discordance of their distributions; however, they did not correlate with any of the two geographic gaps known as genetic barriers to animals. Approximate Bayesian computation-based inference from nuclear SSRs suggested that population divergence occurred before the last glacial maximum. Finally we discussed the implications of these results, in particular the presence of a clear pattern of historical genetic subdivision, on conservation policies.

  8. in Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Top-of-Atmosphere (TOA) reflectance programme. (Chavez 1996). The various image enhancement ..... Organisation of the United Nations, Rome. FSI 2011 State of the forest report; Forest Survey of India,. Ministry of Environment and Forests, Dehradun, India. George P S and Chattopadhyay S 2001 Population and.

  9. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barner, Allison K.; Benkwitt, Cassandra E.; Boersma, Kate S.; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B.; Ingeman, Kurt E.; Kindinger, Tye L.; Lindsley, Amy J.; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N.; Rowe, Jennifer C.; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A.; Heppell, Selina S.

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon’s diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  10. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piacenza, Susan E; Thurman, Lindsey L; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lindsley, Amy J; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon's diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  11. VT Biodiversity Project - Biological Hotspots

    Data.gov (United States)

    Vermont Center for Geographic Information — (Link to Metadata) This dataset is the result of an effort to map biological "hotspots" in Vermont based on the "element occurrences" in the Nongame and Natural...

  12. The silent mass extinction of insect herbivores in biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonseca, Carlos Roberto

    2009-12-01

    Habitat loss is silently leading numerous insects to extinction. Conservation efforts, however, have not been designed specifically to protect these organisms, despite their ecological and evolutionary significance. On the basis of species-host area equations, parameterized with data from the literature and interviews with botanical experts, I estimated the number of specialized plant-feeding insects (i.e., monophages) that live in 34 biodiversity hotspots and the number committed to extinction because of habitat loss. I estimated that 795,971-1,602,423 monophagous insect species live in biodiversity hotspots on 150,371 endemic plant species, which is 5.3-10.6 monophages per plant species. I calculated that 213,830-547,500 monophagous species are committed to extinction in biodiversity hotspots because of reduction of the geographic range size of their endemic hosts. I provided rankings of biodiversity hotspots on the basis of estimated richness of monophagous insects and on estimated number of extinctions of monophagous species. Extinction rates were predicted to be higher in biodiversity hotspots located along strong environmental gradients and on archipelagos, where high spatial turnover of monophagous species along the geographic distribution of their endemic plants is likely. The results strongly support the overall strategy of selecting priority conservation areas worldwide primarily on the basis of richness of endemic plants. To face the global decline of insect herbivores, one must expand the coverage of the network of protected areas and improve the richness of native plants on private lands.

  13. Identifying biodiversity hotspots for threatened mammal species in Iran

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farashi, Azita; Shariati Najafabadi, Mitra; Hosseini, Mahshid

    2017-01-01

    Conservation biology has much more attention for biodiversity hot spots than before. In order to recognize the hotspots for Iranian terrestrial mammal species that are listed in any red list, nationally or globally, ten Species Distribution Models (SDMs) have been applied. The SDMs evaluation

  14. Monitoring conservation effectiveness in a global biodiversity hotspot: the contribution of land cover change assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph, Shijo; Blackburn, George Alan; Gharai, Biswadip; Sudhakar, S; Thomas, A P; Murthy, M S R

    2009-11-01

    Tropical forests, which play critical roles in global biogeochemical cycles, radiation budgets and biodiversity, have undergone rapid changes in land cover in the last few decades. This study examines the complex process of land cover change in the biodiversity hotspot of Western Ghats, India, specifically investigating the effects of conservation measures within the Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary. Current vegetation patterns were mapped using an IRS P6 LISS III image and this was used together with Landsat MSS data from 1973 to map land cover transitions. Two major and divergent trends were observed. A dominant degradational trend can be attributed to agricultural expansion and infrastructure development while a successional trend, resulting from protection of the area, showed the resilience of the system after prolonged disturbances. The sanctuary appears susceptible to continuing disturbances under the current management regime but at lower rates than in surrounding unprotected areas. The study demonstrates that remotely sensed land cover assessments can have important contributions to monitoring land management strategies, understanding processes underpinning land use changes and helping to inform future conservation strategies.

  15. Global warming and extinctions of endemic species from biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malcolm, Jay R; Liu, Canran; Neilson, Ronald P; Hansen, Lara; Hannah, Lee

    2006-04-01

    Global warming is a key threat to biodiversity, but few researchers have assessed the magnitude of this threat at the global scale. We used major vegetation types (biomes) as proxies for natural habitats and, based on projected future biome distributions under doubled-CO2 climates, calculated changes in habitat areas and associated extinctions of endemic plant and vertebrate species in biodiversity hotspots. Because of numerous uncertainties in this approach, we undertook a sensitivity analysis of multiple factors that included (1) two global vegetation models, (2) different numbers of biome classes in our biome classification schemes, (3) different assumptions about whether species distributions were biome specific or not, and (4) different migration capabilities. Extinctions were calculated using both species-area and endemic-area relationships. In addition, average required migration rates were calculated for each hotspot assuming a doubled-CO2 climate in 100 years. Projected percent extinctions ranged from global vegetation model and then by migration and biome classification assumptions. Bootstrap comparisons indicated that effects on hotpots as a group were not significantly different from effects on random same-biome collections of grid cells with respect to biome change or migration rates; in some scenarios, however, botspots exhibited relatively high biome change and low migration rates. Especially vulnerable hotspots were the Cape Floristic Region, Caribbean, Indo-Burma, Mediterranean Basin, Southwest Australia, and Tropical Andes, where plant extinctions per hotspot sometimes exceeded 2000 species. Under the assumption that projected habitat changes were attained in 100 years, estimated global-warming-induced rates of species extinctions in tropical hotspots in some cases exceeded those due to deforestation, supporting suggestions that global warming is one of the most serious threats to the planet's biodiversity.

  16. Overlooked Mountain Rock Pools in Deserts Are Critical Local Hotspots of Biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Vale, C?ndida Gomes; Pimm, Stuart L.; Brito, Jos? Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Background The world is undergoing exceptional biodiversity loss. Most conservation efforts target biodiversity hotspots at large scales. Such approach overlooks small-sized local hotspots, which may be rich in endemic and highly threatened species. We explore the importance of mountain rock pools (gueltas) as local biodiversity hotspots in the Sahara-Sahel. Specifically, we considered how many vertebrates (total and endemics) use gueltas, what factors predict species richness, and which guel...

  17. Poverty, livelihoods and the conservation of nature in biodiversity hotspots around the world

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Bouma, J

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The high incidence of poverty in biodiversity hotspots around the world has given rise to a debate about the potential of integrated development-conservation approaches to help alleviate poverty and protect biodiversity at the same time...

  18. Sites for priority biodiversity conservation in the Caribbean Islands Biodiversity Hotspot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Anadon-Irizarry

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The Caribbean Islands Biodiversity Hotspot is exceptionally important for global biodiversity conservation due to high levels of species endemism and threat. A total of 755 Caribbean plant and vertebrate species are considered globally threatened, making it one of the top Biodiversity Hotspots in terms of threat levels. In 2009, Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs were identified for the Caribbean Islands through a regional-level analysis of accessible data and literature, followed by extensive national-level stakeholder consultation. By applying the Vulnerability criterion, a total of 284 Key Biodiversity Areas were defined and mapped as holding 409 (54% of the region’s threatened species. Of these, 144 (or 51% overlapped partially or completely with protected areas. Cockpit Country, followed by Litchfield Mountain - Matheson’s Run, Blue Mountains (all Jamaica and Massif de la Hotte (Haiti were found to support exceptionally high numbers of globally threatened taxa, with more than 40 such species at each site. Key Biodiversity Areas, building from Important Bird Areas, provide a valuable framework against which to review the adequacy of existing national protected-area systems and also to prioritize which species and sites require the most urgent conservation attention.

  19. Drastic underestimation of amphipod biodiversity in the endangered Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katouzian, Ahmad-Reza; Sari, Alireza; Macher, Jan N; Weiss, Martina; Saboori, Alireza; Leese, Florian; Weigand, Alexander M

    2016-03-01

    Biodiversity hotspots are centers of biological diversity and particularly threatened by anthropogenic activities. Their true magnitude of species diversity and endemism, however, is still largely unknown as species diversity is traditionally assessed using morphological descriptions only, thereby ignoring cryptic species. This directly limits evidence-based monitoring and management strategies. Here we used molecular species delimitation methods to quantify cryptic diversity of the montane amphipods in the Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots. Amphipods are ecosystem engineers in rivers and lakes. Species diversity was assessed by analysing two genetic markers (mitochondrial COI and nuclear 28S rDNA), compared with morphological assignments. Our results unambiguously demonstrate that species diversity and endemism is dramatically underestimated, with 42 genetically identified freshwater species in only five reported morphospecies. Over 90% of the newly recovered species cluster inside Gammarus komareki and G. lacustris; 69% of the recovered species comprise narrow range endemics. Amphipod biodiversity is drastically underestimated for the studied regions. Thus, the risk of biodiversity loss is significantly greater than currently inferred as most endangered species remain unrecognized and/or are only found locally. Integrative application of genetic assessments in monitoring programs will help to understand the true magnitude of biodiversity and accurately evaluate its threat status.

  20. The Role of Informal Protected Areas in Maintaining Biodiversity in the Western Ghats of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shonil A. Bhagwat

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Although it is widely believed that an important function of protected areas is to conserve species that are unable to survive elsewhere, there are very few empirical studies in which a comparison is made between biodiversity of protected areas and that of the cultivated landscape surrounding them. We examined the diversity of trees, birds, and macrofungi at 58 sites in three land-use types in a tree-covered landscape in Kodagu district in the Western Ghats of India. Ten forest reserve sites in the formal protected area, and 25 sacred groves and 23 coffee plantations in the neighboring cultivated landscape were sampled. A total of 215 tree, 86 bird, and 163 macrofungus species were recorded. The forest reserve had a large number of trees that were restricted in their distribution, and the sacred groves had a large number of macrofungi. We observed that deciduous trees and non-forest-dwelling birds increased, and evergreen trees and forest-dwelling birds decreased with increasing intensity of land management. We found that trees having non-timber uses and macrofungi useful to the local people, as well as those with medicinal properties, were abundant in sacred groves. We found no significant differences in the distribution of endemic and threatened birds across the three land-use types. Although endemic trees were more abundant in the forest reserve than in sacred groves, threatened trees were more abundant in sacred groves than in the forest reserve. We attribute the high diversity in sacred groves to the native tree cover in shade coffee plantations. We conclude that informal protected areas are as important as formal ones for biodiversity conservation in Kodagu. We recommend that a conservation strategy that recognizes informal protection traditions is essential for successful biodiversity conservation in regions where formal reserves are surrounded by a matrix of cultivated land.

  1. Population growth, human development, and deforestation in biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jha, S; Bawa, K S

    2006-06-01

    Human population and development activities affect the rate of deforestation in biodiversity hotspots. We quantified the effect of human population growth and development on rates of deforestation and analyzed the relationship between these causal factors in the 1980s and 1990s. We compared the averages of population growth, human development index (HDI, which measures income, health, and education), and deforestation rate and computed correlations among these variables for countries that contain biodiversity hotspots. When population growth was high and HDI was low there was a high rate of deforestation, but when HDI was high, rate of deforestation was low, despite high population growth. The correlation among variables was significant for the 1990s but not for the 1980s. The relationship between population growth and HDI had a regional pattern that reflected the historical process of development. Based on the changes in HDI and deforestation rate over time, we identified two drivers of deforestation: policy choice and human-development constraints. Policy choices that disregard conservation may cause the loss of forests even in countries that are relatively developed. Lack of development in other countries, on the other hand, may increase the pressure on forests to meet the basic needs of the human population. Deforestation resulting from policy choices may be easier to fix than deforestation arising from human development constraints. To prevent deforestation in the countries that have such constraints, transfer of material and intellectual resources from developed countries may be needed. Popular interest in sustainable development in developed countries can facilitate the transfer of these resources.

  2. Testing the Efficacy of Global Biodiversity Hotspots for Insect Conservation: The Case of South African Katydids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazelet, Corinna S; Thompson, Aileen C; Naskrecki, Piotr

    2016-01-01

    The use of endemism and vascular plants only for biodiversity hotspot delineation has long been contested. Few studies have focused on the efficacy of global biodiversity hotspots for the conservation of insects, an important, abundant, and often ignored component of biodiversity. We aimed to test five alternative diversity measures for hotspot delineation and examine the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots for conserving a non-typical target organism, South African katydids. Using a 1° fishnet grid, we delineated katydid hotspots in two ways: (1) count-based: grid cells in the top 10% of total, endemic, threatened and/or sensitive species richness; vs. (2) score-based: grid cells with a mean value in the top 10% on a scoring system which scored each species on the basis of its IUCN Red List threat status, distribution, mobility and trophic level. We then compared katydid hotspots with each other and with recognized biodiversity hotspots. Grid cells within biodiversity hotspots had significantly higher count-based and score-based diversity than non-hotspot grid cells. There was a significant association between the three types of hotspots. Of the count-based measures, endemic species richness was the best surrogate for the others. However, the score-based measure out-performed all count-based diversity measures. Species richness was the least successful surrogate of all. The strong performance of the score-based method for hotspot prediction emphasizes the importance of including species' natural history information for conservation decision-making, and is easily adaptable to other organisms. Furthermore, these results add empirical support for the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots in conserving non-target organisms.

  3. Orchid conservation in the biodiversity hotspot of southwestern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qiang; Chen, Jin; Corlett, Richard T; Fan, XuLi; Yu, DongLi; Yang, HongPei; Gao, JiangYun

    2015-12-01

    Xishuangbanna is on the northern margins of tropical Asia in southwestern China and has the largest area of tropical forest remaining in the country. It is in the Indo-Burma hotspot and contains 16% of China's vascular flora in biodiversity. To understand the effects of land-use change and collection on orchid species diversity and determine protection priorities, we conducted systematic field surveys, observed markets, interviewed orchid collectors, and then determined the conservation status of all orchids. We identified 426 orchid species in 115 genera in Xishuangbanna: 31% of all orchid species that occur in China. Species richness was highest at 1000-1200 m elevation. Three orchid species were assessed as possibly extinct in the wild, 15 as critically endangered, 82 as endangered, 124 as vulnerable, 186 as least concern, and 16 as data deficient. Declines over 20 years in harvested species suggested over-collection was the major threat, and utility value (i.e., medicinal or ornamental value) was significantly related to endangerment. Expansion of rubber tree plantations was less of a threat to orchids than to other taxa because only 75 orchid species (17.6%) occurred below the 1000-m-elevation ceiling for rubber cultivation, and most of these (46) occurred in nature reserves. However, climate change is projected to lift this ceiling to around 1300 m by 2050, and the limited area at higher elevations reduces the potential for upslope range expansion. The Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden is committed to achieving zero plant extinctions in Xishuangbanna, and orchids are a high priority. Appropriate in and ex situ conservation strategies, including new protected areas and seed banking, have been developed for every threatened orchid species and are being implemented. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  4. Marine caves of the Mediterranean Sea: a sponge biodiversity reservoir within a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerovasileiou, Vasilis; Voultsiadou, Eleni

    2012-01-01

    Marine caves are widely acknowledged for their unique biodiversity and constitute a typical feature of the Mediterranean coastline. Herein an attempt was made to evaluate the ecological significance of this particular ecosystem in the Mediterranean Sea, which is considered a biodiversity hotspot. This was accomplished by using Porifera, which dominate the rocky sublittoral substrata, as a reference group in a meta-analytical approach, combining primary research data from the Aegean Sea (eastern Mediterranean) with data derived from the literature. In total 311 species from all poriferan classes were recorded, representing 45.7% of the Mediterranean Porifera. Demospongiae and Homoscleromorpha are highly represented in marine caves at the family (88%), generic (70%), and species level (47.5%), the latter being the most favored group along with Dictyoceratida and Lithistida. Several rare and cave-exclusive species were reported from only one or few caves, indicating the fragmentation and peculiarity of this unique ecosystem. Species richness and phylogenetic diversity varied among Mediterranean areas; the former was positively correlated with research effort, being higher in the northern Mediterranean, while the latter was generally higher in caves than in the overall sponge assemblages of each area. Resemblance analysis among areas revealed that cavernicolous sponge assemblages followed a pattern quite similar to that of the overall Mediterranean assemblages. The same pattern was exhibited by the zoogeographic affinities of cave sponges: species with Atlanto-Mediterranean distribution and Mediterranean endemics prevailed (more than 40% each), 70% of them having warm-water affinities, since most caves were studied in shallow waters. According to our findings, Mediterranean marine caves appear to be important sponge biodiversity reservoirs of high representativeness and great scientific interest, deserving further detailed study and protection.

  5. Incorporating threat in hotspots and coldspots of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schröter, Matthias; Kraemer, Roland; Ceauşu, Silvia; Rusch, Graciela M

    2017-11-01

    Spatial prioritization could help target conservation actions directed to maintain both biodiversity and ecosystem services. We delineate hotspots and coldspots of two biodiversity conservation features and five regulating and cultural services by incorporating an indicator of 'threat', i.e. timber harvest profitability for forest areas in Telemark (Norway). We found hotspots, where high values of biodiversity, ecosystem services and threat coincide, ranging from 0.1 to 7.1% of the area, depending on varying threshold levels. Targeting of these areas for conservation follows reactive conservation approaches. In coldspots, high biodiversity and ecosystem service values coincide with low levels of threat, and cover 0.1-3.4% of the forest area. These areas might serve proactive conservation approaches at lower opportunity cost (foregone timber harvest profits). We conclude that a combination of indicators of biodiversity, ecosystem services and potential threat is an appropriate approach for spatial prioritization of proactive and reactive conservation strategies.

  6. Overlooked mountain rock pools in deserts are critical local hotspots of biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cândida Gomes Vale

    Full Text Available The world is undergoing exceptional biodiversity loss. Most conservation efforts target biodiversity hotspots at large scales. Such approach overlooks small-sized local hotspots, which may be rich in endemic and highly threatened species. We explore the importance of mountain rock pools (gueltas as local biodiversity hotspots in the Sahara-Sahel. Specifically, we considered how many vertebrates (total and endemics use gueltas, what factors predict species richness, and which gueltas are of most priority for conservation. We expected to provide management recommendations, improve local biodiversity conservation, and simultaneously contribute with a framework for future enhancement of local communities' economy. The identification of local hotspots of biodiversity is important for revaluating global conservation priorities.We quantified the number of vertebrate species from each taxonomic group and endemics present in 69 gueltas in Mauritania, then compared these with species present in a surrounding area and recorded in the country. We evaluated the predictors of species number's present in each guelta through a multiple regression model. We ranked gueltas by their priority for conservation taking into account the percentage of endemics and threats to each guelta. Within a mere aggregate extent of 43 ha, gueltas hold about 32% and 78% of the total taxa analysed and endemics of Mauritania, respectively. The number of species present in each guelta increased with the primary productivity and area of gueltas and occurrence of permanent water. Droughts and human activities threaten gueltas, while 64% of them are currently unprotected.Gueltas are crucial for local biodiversity conservation and human activities. They require urgent management plans in Mauritania's mountains. They could provide refugia under climate change being important for long-term conservation of Sahara-Sahel biodiversity. Given their disproportional importance in relation to their

  7. Overlooked mountain rock pools in deserts are critical local hotspots of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vale, Cândida Gomes; Pimm, Stuart L; Brito, José Carlos

    2015-01-01

    The world is undergoing exceptional biodiversity loss. Most conservation efforts target biodiversity hotspots at large scales. Such approach overlooks small-sized local hotspots, which may be rich in endemic and highly threatened species. We explore the importance of mountain rock pools (gueltas) as local biodiversity hotspots in the Sahara-Sahel. Specifically, we considered how many vertebrates (total and endemics) use gueltas, what factors predict species richness, and which gueltas are of most priority for conservation. We expected to provide management recommendations, improve local biodiversity conservation, and simultaneously contribute with a framework for future enhancement of local communities' economy. The identification of local hotspots of biodiversity is important for revaluating global conservation priorities. We quantified the number of vertebrate species from each taxonomic group and endemics present in 69 gueltas in Mauritania, then compared these with species present in a surrounding area and recorded in the country. We evaluated the predictors of species number's present in each guelta through a multiple regression model. We ranked gueltas by their priority for conservation taking into account the percentage of endemics and threats to each guelta. Within a mere aggregate extent of 43 ha, gueltas hold about 32% and 78% of the total taxa analysed and endemics of Mauritania, respectively. The number of species present in each guelta increased with the primary productivity and area of gueltas and occurrence of permanent water. Droughts and human activities threaten gueltas, while 64% of them are currently unprotected. Gueltas are crucial for local biodiversity conservation and human activities. They require urgent management plans in Mauritania's mountains. They could provide refugia under climate change being important for long-term conservation of Sahara-Sahel biodiversity. Given their disproportional importance in relation to their size, they are

  8. Counting complete? Finalising the plant inventory of a global biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treurnicht, Martina; Colville, Jonathan F; Joppa, Lucas N; Huyser, Onno; Manning, John

    2017-01-01

    The Cape Floristic Region-the world's smallest and third richest botanical hotspot-has benefited from sustained levels of taxonomic effort and exploration for almost three centuries, but how close is this to resulting in a near-complete plant species inventory? We analyse a core component of this flora over a 250-year period for trends in taxonomic effort and species discovery linked to ecological and conservation attributes. We show that >40% of the current total of species was described within the first 100 years of exploration, followed by a continued steady rate of description. We propose that analysis provides important real-world insights for other hotspots in the context of global strategic plans for biodiversity in informing considerations of the likely effort required in attaining set targets of comprehensive plant inventories. In a time of unprecedented biodiversity loss, we argue for a focused research agenda across disciplines to increase the rate of species descriptions in global biodiversity hotspots.

  9. Phylogenetic Patterns of Extinction Risk in the Eastern Arc Ecosystems, an African Biodiversity Hotspot

    OpenAIRE

    Yessoufou, Kowiyou; Daru, Barnabas H.; Davies, T. Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    There is an urgent need to reduce drastically the rate at which biodiversity is declining worldwide. Phylogenetic methods are increasingly being recognised as providing a useful framework for predicting future losses, and guiding efforts for pre-emptive conservation actions. In this study, we used a reconstructed phylogenetic tree of angiosperm species of the Eastern Arc Mountains - an important African biodiversity hotspot - and described the distribution of extinction risk across taxonomic ...

  10. Disentangling environmental correlates of vascular plant biodiversity in a Mediterranean hotspot

    OpenAIRE

    Molina-Venegas, Rafael; Aparicio, Abelardo; Pina, Francisco Jos?; Vald?s, Benito; Arroyo, Juan

    2013-01-01

    We determined the environmental correlates of vascular plant biodiversity in the Baetic-Rifan region, a plant biodiversity hotspot in the western Mediterranean. A catalog of the whole flora of Andalusia and northern Morocco, the region that includes most of the Baetic-Rifan complex, was compiled using recent comprehensive floristic catalogs. Hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) and detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) of the different ecoregions of Andalusia and northern Morocco were conduc...

  11. Limited sampling hampers “big data” estimation of species richness in a tropical biodiversity hotspot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engemann, Kristine; Enquist, Brian J.; Sandel, Brody Steven

    2015-01-01

    in Ecuador, one of the most species-rich and climatically heterogeneous biodiversity hotspots. Species richness estimates were calculated based on 205,735 georeferenced specimens of 15,788 species using the Margalef diversity index, the Chao estimator, the second-order Jackknife and Bootstrapping resampling...

  12. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: An overview of Asian Elephants in the Western Ghats, southern India: implications for the conservation of Western Ghats ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Baskaran

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The Western Ghats region is a global biodiversity hotspot and the source of all the major rivers of peninsular India. The conservation of this region is important for the biodiversity it harbours, and for ecological functions that include climate stability, erosion control, clean water and air, which are essential to safeguard economic growth, social stability and quality of life for the people of peninsular India. Possessing a unique diversity in topography, climate, vegetation, faunal communities, endemism and human communities, the Western Ghats is also known for its spectacular assemblage of larger mammals, including 25% of the global population of Asian Elephants. There are four major landscapes in the Western Ghats: (1 Uttara Kannada, (2 Brahmagiri-Nilgiris, (3 Anamalai-Nelliyampathy-High Range, and (4 Periyar-Agasthyamalai, spread across 30,000km2, harbouring a minimum 10,000 elephants in six different populations with signs of an increasing trend in some populations. The second landscape (Brahmagiri-Nilgiris with over 50% of the Ghats elephant population, along with its contiguity to the Eastern Ghats elephant landscape, forms the single largest global population of Asian Elephants. However, major threats to the long-term conservation of the elephant include further fragmentation of habitat, continued poaching of bulls for ivory, and escalation in human-elephant conflicts resulting in public antagonism toward the species. The goals of management should thus be to: (1 consolidate habitats and preserve corridors to avoid further fragmentation; (2 take steps through integrated land use planning at the landscape level to reduce human-elephant conflicts; and (3 build up a demographically and genetically viable elephant population by protecting the tusked males from ivory poaching. Being a wide-ranging umbrella species, ensuring the long-term conservation of Asian Elephants in the Ghats implies protecting its biodiversity and ecological

  13. Global warming and extinctions of endemic species from biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jay R. Malcolm; Canran Liu; Ronald P. Neilson; Lara Hansen; Lee. Hannah

    2006-01-01

    Global warming is a key threat to biodiversity, but few researchers have assessed the magnitude of this threat at the global scale. We used major vegetation types (biomes) as proxies for natural habitats and, based on projected future biome distributions under doubled-C02 climates, calculated changes in habitat areas and associated extinctions of...

  14. Metazoan parasite species richness in Neotropical fishes: hotspots and the geography of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luque, J L; Poulin, R

    2007-06-01

    Although research on parasite biodiversity has intensified recently, there are signs that parasites remain an underestimated component of total biodiversity in many regions of the planet. To identify geographical hotspots of parasite diversity, we performed qualitative and quantitative analyses of the parasite-host associations in fishes from Latin America and the Caribbean, a region that includes known hotspots of plant and animal biodiversity. The database included 10,904 metazoan parasite-host associations involving 1660 fish species. The number of host species with at least 1 parasite record was less than 10% of the total known fish species in the majority of countries. Associations involving adult endoparasites in actinopterygian fish hosts dominated the database. Across the whole region, no significant difference in parasite species richness was detected between marine and freshwater fishes. As a rule, host body size and study effort (number of studies per fish species) were good predictors of parasite species richness. Some interesting patterns emerged when we included only the regions with highest fish species biodiversity and study effort (Brazil, Mexico and the Caribbean Islands). Independently of differences in study effort or host body sizes, Mexico stands out as a hotspot of parasite diversity for freshwater fishes, as does Brasil for marine fishes. However, among 57 marine fish species common to all 3 regions, populations from the Caribbean consistently harboured more parasite species. These differences may reflect true biological patterns, or regional discrepancies in study effort and local priorities for fish parasitology research.

  15. Climatic and topographical correlates of plant palaeo- and neoendemism in a Mediterranean biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina-Venegas, Rafael; Aparicio, Abelardo; Lavergne, Sébastien; Arroyo, Juan

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the evolutionary and ecological forces contributing to the emergence of biodiversity hotspots is of outstanding importance to elucidate how they may withstand current climate changes. Here we explored patterns of phylogenetic and non-phylogenetic plant endemism in a Mediterranean biodiversity hotspot. We hypothesized that areas with wet and equable climatic conditions would be prone to long-term persistence of endemic lineages (palaeoendemism), whilst areas of recent local speciation (neoendemism) would be more related to harsher environmental conditions and to high topographical relief promoting speciation. We focused on the Baetic-Rifan biodiversity hotspot (southern Iberian Peninsula and northern Morocco) in combination with molecular phylogenetic information and relative phylogenetic endemism (RPE), a recent phylogenetic measure of endemism, allowing us to discern centres of palaeo- from those of neoendemism. Using eco-geographical regions as study units, we explored correlations between both RPE and endemic species richness with precipitation- and temperature-related variables and with elevation range. Centres of neoendemism were concentrated towards the easternmost part of the hotspot, while centres of palaeoendemism were clustered in the vicinity of the Strait of Gibraltar. The RPE index, indicating more palaeoendemism, was positively correlated with total annual precipitation, while endemic species richness showed a poor correlation. In contrast, elevation range and mean annual temperature were poor predictors of RPE, despite elevation range showing a strong correlation with endemic species richness. The Baetic-Rifan biodiversity hotspot shows clearly differentiated centres of neo- and palaeoendemism. Topographical relief may have driven evolutionary diversification of newly evolved species, while water availability seems more critical for the long-term persistence of ancient lineages in refuge areas of smoother topography. Given climatic

  16. Identification of biodiversity hotspot in national level – Importance of unpublished data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naruemon Tantipisanuh

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available High priority areas for conservation are typically identified based on ad hoc methods without supporting data due to a lack of scientific resources and staff. The objective of this study was to show how unpublished data in combination with citizen science can be useful for identifying biodiversity hotspot areas using Thailand as an example. Species records were aggregated from various sources both published (records permanently archived or temporarily available on the internet and unpublished data (derived from interviews. Data from 2001 to 2016 were used to identify hotspot areas. In total, 15% of the data were obtained from personal interviews. Most Thai hotspot areas were already inside government protected areas. Amphibians and reptiles were the taxa that unpublished data had the greatest influence on hotspot identification, while this influence was least for birds. Spatial coverage of species records showed a bias toward particular regions and areas probably due to a number of factors including their international reputation and previous species records. Results from this project reveal the importance of unpublished records as a source for identifying hotspot locations especially for less studied species groups and indicates the continued need for encouraging scientists as well as amateur naturalists to report their observations to archived websites and/or publish in peer-reviewed journals. Keywords: Citizen science, Amphibians, Reptiles, Birds, Mammals

  17. Disentangling environmental correlates of vascular plant biodiversity in a Mediterranean hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina-Venegas, Rafael; Aparicio, Abelardo; Pina, Francisco José; Valdés, Benito; Arroyo, Juan

    2013-10-01

    We determined the environmental correlates of vascular plant biodiversity in the Baetic-Rifan region, a plant biodiversity hotspot in the western Mediterranean. A catalog of the whole flora of Andalusia and northern Morocco, the region that includes most of the Baetic-Rifan complex, was compiled using recent comprehensive floristic catalogs. Hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) and detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) of the different ecoregions of Andalusia and northern Morocco were conducted to determine their floristic affinities. Diversity patterns were studied further by focusing on regional endemic taxa. Endemic and nonendemic alpha diversities were regressed to several environmental variables. Finally, semi-partial regressions on distance matrices were conducted to extract the respective contributions of climatic, altitudinal, lithological, and geographical distance matrices to beta diversity in endemic and nonendemic taxa. We found that West Rifan plant assemblages had more similarities with Andalusian ecoregions than with other nearby northern Morocco ecoregions. The endemic alpha diversity was explained relatively well by the environmental variables related to summer drought and extreme temperature values. Of all the variables, geographical distance contributed by far the most to spatial turnover in species diversity in the Baetic-Rifan hotspot. In the Baetic range, elevation was the most significant driver of nonendemic species beta diversity, while lithology and elevation were the main drivers of endemic beta diversity. Despite the fact that Andalusia and northern Morocco are presently separated by the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, the Baetic and Rifan mountain ranges have many floristic similarities - especially in their western ranges - due to past migration of species across the Strait of Gibraltar. Climatic variables could be shaping the spatial distribution of endemic species richness throughout the Baetic-Rifan hotspot. Determinants

  18. Biodiversity Hotspots, Climate Change, and Agricultural Development: Global Limits of Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, U. A.; Rasche, L.; Schmid, E.; Habel, J. C.

    2017-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems are threatened by climate and land management change. These changes result from complex and heterogeneous interactions of human activities and natural processes. Here, we study the potential change in pristine area in 33 global biodiversity hotspots within this century under four climate projections (representative concentration pathways) and associated population and income developments (shared socio-economic pathways). A coupled modelling framework computes the regional net expansion of crop and pasture lands as result of changes in food production and consumption. We use a biophysical crop simulation model to quantify climate change impacts on agricultural productivity, water, and nutrient emissions for alternative crop management systems in more than 100 thousand agricultural land polygons (homogeneous response units) and for each climate projection. The crop simulation model depicts detailed soil, weather, and management information and operates with a daily time step. We use time series of livestock statistics to link livestock production to feed and pasture requirements. On the food consumption side, we estimate national demand shifts in all countries by processing population and income growth projections through econometrically estimated Engel curves. Finally, we use a global agricultural sector optimization model to quantify the net change in pristine area in all biodiversity hotspots under different adaptation options. These options include full-scale global implementation of i) crop yield maximizing management without additional irrigation, ii) crop yield maximizing management with additional irrigation, iii) food yield maximizing crop mix adjustments, iv) food supply maximizing trade flow adjustments, v) healthy diets, and vi) combinations of the individual options above. Results quantify the regional potentials and limits of major agricultural producer and consumer adaptation options for the preservation of pristine areas in

  19. NCCOS Assessment: Groundfish biodiversity hotspots off the Pacific Coast of Oregon from 1971-09-05 to 2010-09-20 (NCEI Accession 0156467)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set comprises maps of predicted long-term groundfish biodiversity hotspot probabilities off the Pacific Coast of Oregon. Predicted hotspot probabilities...

  20. Counting complete? Finalising the plant inventory of a global biodiversity hotspot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina Treurnicht

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The Cape Floristic Region—the world’s smallest and third richest botanical hotspot—has benefited from sustained levels of taxonomic effort and exploration for almost three centuries, but how close is this to resulting in a near-complete plant species inventory? We analyse a core component of this flora over a 250-year period for trends in taxonomic effort and species discovery linked to ecological and conservation attributes. We show that >40% of the current total of species was described within the first 100 years of exploration, followed by a continued steady rate of description. We propose that <1% of the flora is still to be described. We document a relatively constant cohort of taxonomists, working over 250 years at what we interpret to be their ‘taxonomic maximum.’ Rates of description of new species were independent of plant growth-form but narrow-range taxa have constituted a significantly greater proportion of species discoveries since 1950. This suggests that the fraction of undiscovered species predominantly comprises localised endemics that are thus of high conservation concern. Our analysis provides important real-world insights for other hotspots in the context of global strategic plans for biodiversity in informing considerations of the likely effort required in attaining set targets of comprehensive plant inventories. In a time of unprecedented biodiversity loss, we argue for a focused research agenda across disciplines to increase the rate of species descriptions in global biodiversity hotspots.

  1. Reef fishes in biodiversity hotspots are at greatest risk from loss of coral species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holbrook, Sally J; Schmitt, Russell J; Messmer, Vanessa; Brooks, Andrew J; Srinivasan, Maya; Munday, Philip L; Jones, Geoffrey P

    2015-01-01

    Coral reef ecosystems are under a variety of threats from global change and anthropogenic disturbances that are reducing the number and type of coral species on reefs. Coral reefs support upwards of one third of all marine species of fish, so the loss of coral habitat may have substantial consequences to local fish diversity. We posit that the effects of habitat degradation will be most severe in coral regions with highest biodiversity of fishes due to greater specialization by fishes for particular coral habitats. Our novel approach to this important but untested hypothesis was to conduct the same field experiment at three geographic locations across the Indo-Pacific biodiversity gradient (Papua New Guinea; Great Barrier Reef, Australia; French Polynesia). Specifically, we experimentally explored whether the response of local fish communities to identical changes in diversity of habitat-providing corals was independent of the size of the regional species pool of fishes. We found that the proportional reduction (sensitivity) in fish biodiversity to loss of coral diversity was greater for regions with larger background species pools, reflecting variation in the degree of habitat specialization of fishes across the Indo-Pacific diversity gradient. This result implies that habitat-associated fish in diversity hotspots are at greater risk of local extinction to a given loss of habitat diversity compared to regions with lower species richness. This mechanism, related to the positive relationship between habitat specialization and regional biodiversity, and the elevated extinction risk this poses for biodiversity hotspots, may apply to species in other types of ecosystems.

  2. Reef fishes in biodiversity hotspots are at greatest risk from loss of coral species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sally J Holbrook

    Full Text Available Coral reef ecosystems are under a variety of threats from global change and anthropogenic disturbances that are reducing the number and type of coral species on reefs. Coral reefs support upwards of one third of all marine species of fish, so the loss of coral habitat may have substantial consequences to local fish diversity. We posit that the effects of habitat degradation will be most severe in coral regions with highest biodiversity of fishes due to greater specialization by fishes for particular coral habitats. Our novel approach to this important but untested hypothesis was to conduct the same field experiment at three geographic locations across the Indo-Pacific biodiversity gradient (Papua New Guinea; Great Barrier Reef, Australia; French Polynesia. Specifically, we experimentally explored whether the response of local fish communities to identical changes in diversity of habitat-providing corals was independent of the size of the regional species pool of fishes. We found that the proportional reduction (sensitivity in fish biodiversity to loss of coral diversity was greater for regions with larger background species pools, reflecting variation in the degree of habitat specialization of fishes across the Indo-Pacific diversity gradient. This result implies that habitat-associated fish in diversity hotspots are at greater risk of local extinction to a given loss of habitat diversity compared to regions with lower species richness. This mechanism, related to the positive relationship between habitat specialization and regional biodiversity, and the elevated extinction risk this poses for biodiversity hotspots, may apply to species in other types of ecosystems.

  3. The impact of shifts in marine biodiversity hotspots on patterns of range evolution: Evidence from the Holocentridae (squirrelfishes and soldierfishes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dornburg, Alex; Moore, Jon; Beaulieu, Jeremy M; Eytan, Ron I; Near, Thomas J

    2015-01-01

    One of the most striking biodiversity patterns is the uneven distribution of marine species richness, with species diversity in the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA) exceeding all other areas. However, the IAA formed fairly recently, and marine biodiversity hotspots have shifted across nearly half the globe since the Paleogene. Understanding how lineages have responded to shifting biodiversity hotspots represents a necessary historic perspective on the formation and maintenance of global marine biodiversity. Such evolutionary inferences are often challenged by a lack of fossil evidence that provide insights into historic patterns of abundance and diversity. The greatest diversity of squirrelfishes and soldierfishes (Holocentridae) is in the IAA, yet these fishes also represent some of the most numerous fossil taxa in deposits of the former West Tethyan biodiversity hotspot. We reconstruct the pattern of holocentrid range evolution using time-calibrated phylogenies that include most living species and several fossil lineages, demonstrating the importance of including fossil species as terminal taxa in ancestral area reconstructions. Holocentrids exhibit increased range fragmentation following the West Tethyan hotspot collapse. However, rather than originating within the emerging IAA hotspot, the IAA has acted as a reservoir for holocentrid diversity that originated in adjacent regions over deep evolutionary time scales. © 2014 The Author(s). Evolution © 2014 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  4. Biodiversity hotspot for marine invertebrates around the Dokdo, East Sea, Korea: Ecological checklist revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Sung Joon; Park, Jinsoon; Ryu, Jongseong; Rho, Hyun Soo; Kim, Won; Khim, Jong Seong

    2017-06-30

    We extensively reviewed the macrozoobenthos around Dokdo, Korea, by analyzing metadata collected over the past 50years. The Dokdo macrozoobenthos was represented by 578 species belonging to 243 families from 12 phyla, where four major phyla (or classes) collectively accounted for 86% to total. Mollusks, arthropods, and cnidarians were semi-equally occurred in intertidal and subtidal areas, while polychetes dominated the subtidal zone. The northern most region of Dokdo had the greatest biodiversity (173 species). The taxonomic distinctness analysis (delta+) indicated a close association between species by region, although the number of species varied greatly. About half of the species did not occur cross the locations (n=20), indicating strong habitat preferences of Dokdo macrofaunal assemblages. Overall, the diversity of Dokdo was greater than that of Ulleung Island (east coast), but comparable to that of the well-developed tidal flats in the western Korean waters, highlighting its status as a biodiversity hotspot. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Key Biodiversity Areas identification in the Upper Guinea forest biodiversity hotspot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.M.L. Kouame

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Priority-setting approaches and tools are commons ways to support the rapid extinction of species and their habitats and the effective allocation of resources for their conservation. The Key Biodiversity Area (KBA approach is a method for the identification of fine-scale priority areas for conservation. This process led bottom-up has been used in the Upper Guinea Forest Ecosystem of West Africa where human-induced changes have increased the extinction risk of several endemic and threatened species. The irreplaceability and vulnerability criteria commonly used in conservation planning have been used to identify key biodiversity areas in Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. Point locality data were compiled from scientific reports, papers published in scientific journals and museum records. The delineation was conducted following a series of decision rules. In most cases existing IBA polygons and protected areas boundaries were used. For the new sites, temporary boundaries have been drawn and will be confirmed with land-use data. Preliminary KBA data were reviewed by specialists during formal workshops. One hundred and fifty four KBA have been identified in the five countries with 202 globally threatened species. Currently 63% of the KBA are protected. Two AZE sites still exist in the region. This assessment is a first step and is driven from the best available data at the time. There is a need to refine it with recent biodiversity surveys to assist decision-makers in achieving their conservation management goals.

  6. Targeted conservation to safeguard a biodiversity hotspot from climate and land-cover change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struebig, Matthew J; Wilting, Andreas; Gaveau, David L A; Meijaard, Erik; Smith, Robert J; Fischer, Manuela; Metcalfe, Kristian; Kramer-Schadt, Stephanie

    2015-02-02

    Responses of biodiversity to changes in both land cover and climate are recognized [1] but still poorly understood [2]. This poses significant challenges for spatial planning as species could shift, contract, expand, or maintain their range inside or outside protected areas [2-4]. We examine this problem in Borneo, a global biodiversity hotspot [5], using spatial prioritization analyses that maximize species conservation under multiple environmental-change forecasts. Climate projections indicate that 11%-36% of Bornean mammal species will lose ≥ 30% of their habitat by 2080, and suitable ecological conditions will shift upslope for 23%-46%. Deforestation exacerbates this process, increasing the proportion of species facing comparable habitat loss to 30%-49%, a 2-fold increase on historical trends. Accommodating these distributional changes will require conserving land outside existing protected areas, but this may be less than anticipated from models incorporating deforestation alone because some species will colonize high-elevation reserves. Our results demonstrate the increasing importance of upland reserves and that relatively small additions (16,000-28,000 km(2)) to the current conservation estate could provide substantial benefits to biodiversity facing changes to land cover and climate. On Borneo, much of this land is under forestry jurisdiction, warranting targeted conservation partnerships to safeguard biodiversity in an era of global change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Borneo and Indochina are major evolutionary hotspots for Southeast Asian biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Bruyn, Mark; Stelbrink, Björn; Morley, Robert J; Hall, Robert; Carvalho, Gary R; Cannon, Charles H; van den Bergh, Gerrit; Meijaard, Erik; Metcalfe, Ian; Boitani, Luigi; Maiorano, Luigi; Shoup, Robert; von Rintelen, Thomas

    2014-11-01

    Tropical Southeast (SE) Asia harbors extraordinary species richness and in its entirety comprises four of the Earth's 34 biodiversity hotspots. Here, we examine the assembly of the SE Asian biota through time and space. We conduct meta-analyses of geological, climatic, and biological (including 61 phylogenetic) data sets to test which areas have been the sources of long-term biological diversity in SE Asia, particularly in the pre-Miocene, Miocene, and Plio-Pleistocene, and whether the respective biota have been dominated by in situ diversification, immigration and/or emigration, or equilibrium dynamics. We identify Borneo and Indochina, in particular, as major "evolutionary hotspots" for a diverse range of fauna and flora. Although most of the region's biodiversity is a result of both the accumulation of immigrants and in situ diversification, within-area diversification and subsequent emigration have been the predominant signals characterizing Indochina and Borneo's biota since at least the early Miocene. In contrast, colonization events are comparatively rare from younger volcanically active emergent islands such as Java, which show increased levels of immigration events. Few dispersal events were observed across the major biogeographic barrier of Wallace's Line. Accelerated efforts to conserve Borneo's flora and fauna in particular, currently housing the highest levels of SE Asian plant and mammal species richness, are critically required. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Biodiversity and paleobiogeography of the European freshwater Neogene: trends, hotspots and faunal turnovers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neubauer, Thomas A.; Harzhauser, Mathias; Georgopoulou, Elisavet; Andreas, Kroh; Mandic, Oleg

    2015-04-01

    We present an outline of a paleobiogeographic framework for the European fresh- and brackish-water systems during the Neogene. Data basis is a presence-absence matrix of lacustrine gastropods from over 2,700 localities. Cluster analyses were separately carried out on the datasets of the four time slices Early Miocene, Middle Miocene, Late Miocene, and Pliocene. Based on the results of the cluster analyses, the degree of endemicity, and geographical coherence, we classified the lake systems of the four time intervals into biogeographic units. The increasing degree of provincialism throughout the Neogene supported more detailed breakdowns in younger intervals. This pattern reflects the ongoing continentalization of Europe linked to the Alpidic Orogenesis. Additionally, the retreat of the Paratethys Sea and its isolation from the Mediterranean promoted the evolution of endemic faunas in surrounding lacustrine systems. Direct descendants such as long-lived Lake Pannon, Lake Dacia or Lake Slavonia persisted over several millions of years and promoted the evolution of highly diverse and endemic faunas. Because of their extensive duration they crucially influenced family-level composition, differences of the relative species richnesses per biogeographic unit, and rising rate of endemicity. We show that the biogeographic classification as well as the existence of biodiversity hotspots are tightly linked to the formation and evolution of long-lived lacustrine environments and thus to Europe's geodynamic history. Heat maps are provided to visualize the shifting distributions of hotspots through time. The only physiographic factor that can be shown to be correlated with species richness is the size of a lake. Other factors such as latitude, longitude or temporal duration show weak relationships. Correlation of biodiversity trends to climatic parameters such as temperature and precipitation are feasible only for selected periods. Climate is considered to have only minor

  9. Phylogenetic patterns of extinction risk in the eastern arc ecosystems, an African biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yessoufou, Kowiyou; Daru, Barnabas H; Davies, T Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    There is an urgent need to reduce drastically the rate at which biodiversity is declining worldwide. Phylogenetic methods are increasingly being recognised as providing a useful framework for predicting future losses, and guiding efforts for pre-emptive conservation actions. In this study, we used a reconstructed phylogenetic tree of angiosperm species of the Eastern Arc Mountains - an important African biodiversity hotspot - and described the distribution of extinction risk across taxonomic ranks and phylogeny. We provide evidence for both taxonomic and phylogenetic selectivity in extinction risk. However, we found that selectivity varies with IUCN extinction risk category. Vulnerable species are more closely related than expected by chance, whereas endangered and critically endangered species are not significantly clustered on the phylogeny. We suggest that the general observation for taxonomic and phylogenetic selectivity (i.e. phylogenetic signal, the tendency of closely related species to share similar traits) in extinction risks is therefore largely driven by vulnerable species, and not necessarily the most highly threatened. We also used information on altitudinal distribution and climate to generate a predictive model of at-risk species richness, and found that greater threatened species richness is found at higher altitude, allowing for more informed conservation decision making. Our results indicate that evolutionary history can help predict plant susceptibility to extinction threats in the hyper-diverse but woefully-understudied Eastern Arc Mountains, and illustrate the contribution of phylogenetic approaches in conserving African floristic biodiversity where detailed ecological and evolutionary data are often lacking.

  10. Phylogenetic patterns of extinction risk in the eastern arc ecosystems, an African biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kowiyou Yessoufou

    Full Text Available There is an urgent need to reduce drastically the rate at which biodiversity is declining worldwide. Phylogenetic methods are increasingly being recognised as providing a useful framework for predicting future losses, and guiding efforts for pre-emptive conservation actions. In this study, we used a reconstructed phylogenetic tree of angiosperm species of the Eastern Arc Mountains - an important African biodiversity hotspot - and described the distribution of extinction risk across taxonomic ranks and phylogeny. We provide evidence for both taxonomic and phylogenetic selectivity in extinction risk. However, we found that selectivity varies with IUCN extinction risk category. Vulnerable species are more closely related than expected by chance, whereas endangered and critically endangered species are not significantly clustered on the phylogeny. We suggest that the general observation for taxonomic and phylogenetic selectivity (i.e. phylogenetic signal, the tendency of closely related species to share similar traits in extinction risks is therefore largely driven by vulnerable species, and not necessarily the most highly threatened. We also used information on altitudinal distribution and climate to generate a predictive model of at-risk species richness, and found that greater threatened species richness is found at higher altitude, allowing for more informed conservation decision making. Our results indicate that evolutionary history can help predict plant susceptibility to extinction threats in the hyper-diverse but woefully-understudied Eastern Arc Mountains, and illustrate the contribution of phylogenetic approaches in conserving African floristic biodiversity where detailed ecological and evolutionary data are often lacking.

  11. The mother – child nexus. Knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India

    OpenAIRE

    Cruz García, Gisella Susana

    2006-01-01

    Abstract This study focuses on the mother-child nexus (or process of enculturation) with respect to knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in a context where accelerated processes of modernization and acculturation are leading to the erosion of knowledge and cultural values associated with wild food plant use, in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India. Wild food plants in this biodiversity hotspot form an important part of local diets and are used as famine foods and medicines. In general, the co...

  12. Conservation priorities in a biodiversity hotspot: analysis of narrow endemic plant species in New Caledonia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrien S Wulff

    Full Text Available New Caledonia is a global biodiversity hotspot facing extreme environmental degradation. Given the urgent need for conservation prioritisation, we have made a first-pass quantitative assessment of the distribution of Narrow Endemic Species (NES in the flora to identify species and sites that are potentially important for conservation action. We assessed the distributional status of all angiosperm and gymnosperm species using data from taxonomic descriptions and herbarium samples. We characterised species as being NES if they occurred in 3 or fewer locations. In total, 635 of the 2930 assessed species were classed as NES, of which only 150 have been subjected to the IUCN conservation assessment. As the distributional patterns of un-assessed species from one or two locations correspond well with assessed species which have been classified as Critically Endangered or Endangered respectively, we suggest that our distributional data can be used to prioritise species for IUCN assessment. We also used the distributional data to produce a map of "Hotspots of Plant Narrow Endemism" (HPNE. Combined, we used these data to evaluate the coincidence of NES with mining activities (a major source of threat on New Caledonia and also areas of conservation protection. This is to identify species and locations in most urgent need of further conservation assessment and subsequent action. Finally, we grouped the NES based on the environments they occurred in and modelled the habitat distribution of these groups with a Maximum Entropy Species Distribution Model (MaxEnt. The NES were separable into three different groups based primarily on geological differences. The distribution of the habitat types for each group coincide partially with the HPNE described above and also indicates some areas which have high habitat suitability but few recorded NES. Some of these areas may represent under-sampled hotspots of narrow endemism and are priorities for further field work.

  13. Calcareous forest seepages acting as biodiversity hotspots and refugia for woodland snail faunas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horsák, Michal; Tajovská, Eva; Horsáková, Veronika

    2017-07-01

    Land-snail species richness has repeatedly been found to increase with the increasing site calcium content and humidity. These two factors, reported as the main drivers of land-snail assemblage diversity, are also among the main habitat characteristics of calcareous seepages. Here we explore local species richness and compositional variation of forest spring-fed patches (i.e. seepages), to test the hypothesis that these habitats might act as biodiversity hotspots and refugia of regional snail faunas. In contrast to treeless spring fens, only little is known about land snail faunas inhabiting forest seepages. Studying 25 isolated calcareous forest seepages, evenly distributed across the White Carpathians Protected Landscape Area (SE Czech Republic), we found that these sites, albeit spatially very limited, can harbour up to 66% of the shelled land-snail species known to occur in this well-explored protected area (in total 83 species). By comparing land snail assemblages of the studied seepages with those occurring in the woodland surroundings of each site as well as those previously sampled in 28 preserved forest sites within the study area, we found the seepages to be among the most species rich sites. Although the numbers of species did not statistically differ among these three systems, we found highly significant differences in species composition. Seepage faunas were composed of many species significantly associated with spring sites, in contrast to the assemblages of both surrounding and preserved forest sites. Our results highly support the hypothesis that calcareous forest seepages might serve as refugia and biodiversity hotspots of regional land snail faunas. Protection of these unique habitats challenges both conservation plans and forest management guidelines as they might act as sources for the recolonization and restoration of forest snail assemblages particularly in areas impoverished by harvesting and clearcutting.

  14. The origin and evolution of coral species richness in a marine biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Danwei; Goldberg, Emma E; Chou, Loke Ming; Roy, Kaustuv

    2018-02-01

    The Coral Triangle (CT) region of the Indo-Pacific realm harbors an extraordinary number of species, with richness decreasing away from this biodiversity hotspot. Despite multiple competing hypotheses, the dynamics underlying this regional diversity pattern remain poorly understood. Here, we use a time-calibrated evolutionary tree of living reef coral species, their current geographic ranges, and model-based estimates of regional rates of speciation, extinction, and geographic range shifts to show that origination rates within the CT are lower than in surrounding regions, a result inconsistent with the long-standing center of origin hypothesis. Furthermore, endemism of coral species in the CT is low, and the CT endemics are older than relatives found outside this region. Overall, our model results suggest that the high diversity of reef corals in the CT is largely due to range expansions into this region of species that evolved elsewhere. These findings strongly support the notion that geographic range shifts play a critical role in generating species diversity gradients. They also show that preserving the processes that gave rise to the striking diversity of corals in the CT requires protecting not just reefs within the hotspot, but also those in the surrounding areas. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  15. Impacts of Dams and Global Warming on Fish Biodiversity in the Indo-Burma Hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kano, Yuichi; Dudgeon, David; Nam, So; Samejima, Hiromitsu; Watanabe, Katsutoshi; Grudpan, Chaiwut; Grudpan, Jarungjit; Magtoon, Wichan; Musikasinthorn, Prachya; Nguyen, Phuong Thanh; Praxaysonbath, Bounthob; Sato, Tomoyuki; Shibukawa, Koichi; Shimatani, Yukihiro; Suvarnaraksha, Apinun; Tanaka, Wataru; Thach, Phanara; Tran, Dac Dinh; Yamashita, Tomomi; Utsugi, Kenzo

    2016-01-01

    Both hydropower dams and global warming pose threats to freshwater fish diversity. While the extent of global warming may be reduced by a shift towards energy generation by large dams in order to reduce fossil-fuel use, such dams profoundly modify riverine habitats. Furthermore, the threats posed by dams and global warming will interact: for example, dams constrain range adjustments by fishes that might compensate for warming temperatures. Evaluation of their combined or synergistic effects is thus essential for adequate assessment of the consequences of planned water-resource developments. We made projections of the responses of 363 fish species within the Indo-Burma global biodiversity hotspot to the separate and joint impacts of dams and global warming. The hotspot encompasses the Lower Mekong Basin, which is the world's largest freshwater capture fishery. Projections for 81 dam-building scenarios revealed progressive impacts upon projected species richness, habitable area, and the proportion of threatened species as generating capacity increased. Projections from 126 global-warming scenarios included a rise in species richness, a reduction in habitable area, and an increase in the proportion of threatened species; however, there was substantial variation in the extent of these changes among warming projections. Projections from scenarios that combined the effects of dams and global warming were derived either by simply adding the two threats, or by combining them in a synergistic manner that took account of the likelihood that habitat shifts under global warming would be constrained by river fragmentation. Impacts on fish diversity under the synergistic projections were 10-20% higher than those attributable to additive scenarios, and were exacerbated as generating capacity increased-particularly if CO2 emissions remained high. The impacts of dams, especially those on river mainstreams, are likely to be greater, more predictable and more immediately pressing for

  16. Impacts of Dams and Global Warming on Fish Biodiversity in the Indo-Burma Hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuichi Kano

    Full Text Available Both hydropower dams and global warming pose threats to freshwater fish diversity. While the extent of global warming may be reduced by a shift towards energy generation by large dams in order to reduce fossil-fuel use, such dams profoundly modify riverine habitats. Furthermore, the threats posed by dams and global warming will interact: for example, dams constrain range adjustments by fishes that might compensate for warming temperatures. Evaluation of their combined or synergistic effects is thus essential for adequate assessment of the consequences of planned water-resource developments. We made projections of the responses of 363 fish species within the Indo-Burma global biodiversity hotspot to the separate and joint impacts of dams and global warming. The hotspot encompasses the Lower Mekong Basin, which is the world's largest freshwater capture fishery. Projections for 81 dam-building scenarios revealed progressive impacts upon projected species richness, habitable area, and the proportion of threatened species as generating capacity increased. Projections from 126 global-warming scenarios included a rise in species richness, a reduction in habitable area, and an increase in the proportion of threatened species; however, there was substantial variation in the extent of these changes among warming projections. Projections from scenarios that combined the effects of dams and global warming were derived either by simply adding the two threats, or by combining them in a synergistic manner that took account of the likelihood that habitat shifts under global warming would be constrained by river fragmentation. Impacts on fish diversity under the synergistic projections were 10-20% higher than those attributable to additive scenarios, and were exacerbated as generating capacity increased-particularly if CO2 emissions remained high. The impacts of dams, especially those on river mainstreams, are likely to be greater, more predictable and more

  17. Impacts of Dams and Global Warming on Fish Biodiversity in the Indo-Burma Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, So; Samejima, Hiromitsu; Watanabe, Katsutoshi; Grudpan, Chaiwut; Grudpan, Jarungjit; Magtoon, Wichan; Musikasinthorn, Prachya; Nguyen, Phuong Thanh; Praxaysonbath, Bounthob; Sato, Tomoyuki; Shimatani, Yukihiro; Suvarnaraksha, Apinun; Tanaka, Wataru; Thach, Phanara; Tran, Dac Dinh; Yamashita, Tomomi

    2016-01-01

    Both hydropower dams and global warming pose threats to freshwater fish diversity. While the extent of global warming may be reduced by a shift towards energy generation by large dams in order to reduce fossil-fuel use, such dams profoundly modify riverine habitats. Furthermore, the threats posed by dams and global warming will interact: for example, dams constrain range adjustments by fishes that might compensate for warming temperatures. Evaluation of their combined or synergistic effects is thus essential for adequate assessment of the consequences of planned water-resource developments. We made projections of the responses of 363 fish species within the Indo-Burma global biodiversity hotspot to the separate and joint impacts of dams and global warming. The hotspot encompasses the Lower Mekong Basin, which is the world’s largest freshwater capture fishery. Projections for 81 dam-building scenarios revealed progressive impacts upon projected species richness, habitable area, and the proportion of threatened species as generating capacity increased. Projections from 126 global-warming scenarios included a rise in species richness, a reduction in habitable area, and an increase in the proportion of threatened species; however, there was substantial variation in the extent of these changes among warming projections. Projections from scenarios that combined the effects of dams and global warming were derived either by simply adding the two threats, or by combining them in a synergistic manner that took account of the likelihood that habitat shifts under global warming would be constrained by river fragmentation. Impacts on fish diversity under the synergistic projections were 10–20% higher than those attributable to additive scenarios, and were exacerbated as generating capacity increased—particularly if CO2 emissions remained high. The impacts of dams, especially those on river mainstreams, are likely to be greater, more predictable and more immediately

  18. Diversification of an emerging pathogen in a biodiversity hotspot: Leptospira in endemic small mammals of Madagascar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietrich, Muriel; Wilkinson, David A; Soarimalala, Voahangy; Goodman, Steven M; Dellagi, Koussay; Tortosa, Pablo

    2014-06-01

    Biodiversity hotspots and associated endemism are ideal systems for the study of parasite diversity within host communities. Here, we investigated the ecological and evolutionary forces acting on the diversification of an emerging bacterial pathogen, Leptospira spp., in communities of endemic Malagasy small mammals. We determined the infection rate with pathogenic Leptospira in 20 species of sympatric rodents (subfamily Nesomyinae) and tenrecids (family Tenrecidae) at two eastern humid forest localities. A multilocus genotyping analysis allowed the characterization of bacterial diversity within small mammals and gave insights into their genetic relationships with Leptospira infecting endemic Malagasy bats (family Miniopteridae and Vespertilionidae). We report for the first time the presence of pathogenic Leptospira in Malagasy endemic small mammals, with an overall prevalence of 13%. In addition, these hosts harbour species of Leptospira (L. kirschneri, L. borgpetersenii and L. borgpetersenii group B) which are different from those reported in introduced rats (L. interrogans) on Madagascar. The diversification of Leptospira on Madagascar can be traced millions of years into evolutionary history, resulting in the divergence of endemic lineages and strong host specificity. These observations are discussed in relation to the relative roles of endemic vs. introduced mammal species in the evolution and epidemiology of Leptospira on Madagascar, specifically how biodiversity and biogeographical processes can shape community ecology of an emerging pathogen and lead to its diversification within native animal communities. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure - assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostoski, G.; Albrecht, C.; Trajanovski, S.; Wilke, T.

    2010-12-01

    Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so-called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact. Lake Ohrid, a major European biodiversity hotspot situated in a trans-frontier setting on the Balkans, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes. Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1) assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic) biodiversity, (2) summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3) outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species) as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1) watershed impacts, (2) agriculture and forestry, (3) tourism and population growth, (4) non-indigenous species, (5) habitat alteration or loss, (6) unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7) global climate change. Among the major (well-known) threats with high impact are nutrient input (particularly of phosphorus), habitat conversion and silt load. Other threats are potentially of high impact but less well known. Such threats include pollution with hazardous substances (from sources such as mines, former industries, agriculture) or climate change. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species measures, international

  20. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure - assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostoski, G.; Albrecht, C.; Trajanovski, S.; Wilke, T.

    2010-07-01

    Freshwater habitats and species living in freshwater are generally more prone to extinction than terrestrial or marine ones. Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are thus of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact. Lake Ohrid, the European biodiversity hotspot, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes. Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1) assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic) biodiversity, (2) summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3) outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species) as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1) watershed impacts, (2) agriculture and forestry, (3) tourism and population growth, (4) non-indigenous species, (5) habitat alteration or loss, (6) unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7) global climate change. Of the 11 IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) threat classes scored, seven have moderate and three severe impacts. These latter threat classes are energy production and mining, biological resource use, and pollution. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species measures, international conservation

  1. The invasive Red-vented bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer outcompetes native birds in a tropical biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Thibault

    Full Text Available Invasive alien species are a major cause of biodiversity loss globally, but especially on islands where high species richness and levels of endemism accentuate their impacts. The Red vented bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer, a tropical passerine bird that has been introduced widely across locations of high conservation value, is considered an extreme pest. It is currently expanding its range in New Caledonia, one of the world's biodiversity hotspots. Decisive recommendations on management strategies are required urgently to inform local managers and policy makers, but they should be based on quantitative local evidence, not just on expert opinion. The Red-vented bulbul is widely blamed for its impacts on biodiversity, especially through competition. We used data from 2,472 point counts to explore the abundance relationships between the Red-vented bulbul and 14 other species of bird. Our results revealed a negative relationship between the occurrence of the bulbul and the mean abundance of nine species, all native (or endemic, n = 3 to the New Caledonia archipelago. In contrast, the abundance of other introduced species such as Acridotheres tristis (Common myna, Passer domesticus (House sparrow and Spilopelia chinensis (Spotted dove were not affected by the Red-vented bulbul. Moreover, temporal trends in the abundance of impacted species suggest that the Red-vented bulbul may cause niche contractions rather than mortality for native species in man-modified habitats. Monitoring and control of the Red-vented bulbul is recommended to prevent on-going impacts on native bird communities throughout New Caledonia, and its impact on native bird communities elsewhere should be quantified.

  2. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series : Diversity and distribution of anurans in Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary (PWS, northern Western Ghats of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    U. Katwate

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available In global consequences of rapidly changing climate and increased amphibian population decline, mapping amphibian diversity in biodiversity hotspots is essential. In this study we have systematically studied anurans of Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary in terms of species diversity, population structure, threat status and distribution. We recorded a total of 22 anuran species, of which 11 species are endemic to Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot. Family Dicroglossidae was found to be more species-rich. Spatial and temporal variation in anuran diversity was observed by using Shannon diversity and evenness indices. Most of the endemic and threatened anuran species are found to be associated with evergreen undisturbed forest patches. Habitat parameters like humidity, forest type, canopy coverage, riparian canopy coverage, stream persistence and litter depth are found to be major variables governing species diversity and distribution. Major anthropogenic threats to amphibians of Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary are discussed along with future conservation objectives. With range extension of species like Fejervarya caperata and Minervarya sahyadris further north in the Western Ghats, taxonomic ambiguities recorded during study are discussed briefly.

  3. Phosphorus nutrition of phosphorus-sensitive Australian native plants: threats to plant communities in a global biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lambers, Hans; Ahmedi, Idriss; Berkowitz, Oliver; Dunne, Chris; Finnegan, Patrick M; Hardy, Giles E St J; Jost, Ricarda; Laliberté, Etienne; Pearse, Stuart J; Teste, François P

    2013-01-01

    South-western Australia harbours a global biodiversity hotspot on the world's most phosphorus (P)-impoverished soils. The greatest biodiversity occurs on the most severely nutrient-impoverished soils, where non-mycorrhizal species are a prominent component of the flora. Mycorrhizal species dominate where soils contain slightly more phosphorus. In addition to habitat loss and dryland salinity, a major threat to plant biodiversity in this region is eutrophication due to enrichment with P. Many plant species in the south-western Australian biodiversity hotspot are extremely sensitive to P, due to a low capability to down-regulate their phosphate-uptake capacity. Species from the most P-impoverished soils are also very poor competitors at higher P availability, giving way to more competitive species when soil P concentrations are increased. Sources of increased soil P concentrations include increased fire frequency, run-off from agricultural land, and urban activities. Another P source is the P-fertilizing effect of spraying natural environments on a landscape scale with phosphite to reduce the impacts of the introduced plant pathogen Phytophthora cinnamomi, which itself is a serious threat to biodiversity. We argue that alternatives to phosphite for P. cinnamomi management are needed urgently, and propose a strategy to work towards such alternatives, based on a sound understanding of the physiological and molecular mechanisms of the action of phosphite in plants that are susceptible to P. cinnamomi. The threats we describe for the south-western Australian biodiversity hotspot are likely to be very similar for other P-impoverished environments, including the fynbos in South Africa and the cerrado in Brazil.

  4. Marine Biodiversity in Juan Fernández and Desventuradas Islands, Chile: Global Endemism Hotspots.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan M Friedlander

    Full Text Available The Juan Fernández and Desventuradas islands are among the few oceanic islands belonging to Chile. They possess a unique mix of tropical, subtropical, and temperate marine species, and although close to continental South America, elements of the biota have greater affinities with the central and south Pacific owing to the Humboldt Current, which creates a strong biogeographic barrier between these islands and the continent. The Juan Fernández Archipelago has ~700 people, with the major industry being the fishery for the endemic lobster, Jasus frontalis. The Desventuradas Islands are uninhabited except for a small Chilean military garrison on San Félix Island. We compared the marine biodiversity of these islands across multiple taxonomic groups. At San Ambrosio Island (SA, in Desventuradas, the laminarian kelp (Eisenia cokeri, which is limited to Desventuradas in Chile, accounted for >50% of the benthic cover at wave exposed areas, while more sheltered sites were dominated by sea urchin barrens. The benthos at Robinson Crusoe Island (RC, in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, comprised a diverse mix of macroalgae and invertebrates, a number of which are endemic to the region. The biomass of commercially targeted fishes was >2 times higher in remote sites around RC compared to sheltered locations closest to port, and overall biomass was 35% higher around SA compared to RC, likely reflecting fishing effects around RC. The number of endemic fish species was extremely high at both islands, with 87.5% of the species surveyed at RC and 72% at SA consisting of regional endemics. Remarkably, endemics accounted for 99% of the numerical abundance of fishes surveyed at RC and 96% at SA, which is the highest assemblage-level endemism known for any individual marine ecosystem on earth. Our results highlight the uniqueness and global significance of these biodiversity hotspots exposed to very different fishing pressures.

  5. Marine Biodiversity in Juan Fernández and Desventuradas Islands, Chile: Global Endemism Hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedlander, Alan M; Ballesteros, Enric; Caselle, Jennifer E; Gaymer, Carlos F; Palma, Alvaro T; Petit, Ignacio; Varas, Eduardo; Muñoz Wilson, Alex; Sala, Enric

    2016-01-01

    The Juan Fernández and Desventuradas islands are among the few oceanic islands belonging to Chile. They possess a unique mix of tropical, subtropical, and temperate marine species, and although close to continental South America, elements of the biota have greater affinities with the central and south Pacific owing to the Humboldt Current, which creates a strong biogeographic barrier between these islands and the continent. The Juan Fernández Archipelago has ~700 people, with the major industry being the fishery for the endemic lobster, Jasus frontalis. The Desventuradas Islands are uninhabited except for a small Chilean military garrison on San Félix Island. We compared the marine biodiversity of these islands across multiple taxonomic groups. At San Ambrosio Island (SA), in Desventuradas, the laminarian kelp (Eisenia cokeri), which is limited to Desventuradas in Chile, accounted for >50% of the benthic cover at wave exposed areas, while more sheltered sites were dominated by sea urchin barrens. The benthos at Robinson Crusoe Island (RC), in the Juan Fernández Archipelago, comprised a diverse mix of macroalgae and invertebrates, a number of which are endemic to the region. The biomass of commercially targeted fishes was >2 times higher in remote sites around RC compared to sheltered locations closest to port, and overall biomass was 35% higher around SA compared to RC, likely reflecting fishing effects around RC. The number of endemic fish species was extremely high at both islands, with 87.5% of the species surveyed at RC and 72% at SA consisting of regional endemics. Remarkably, endemics accounted for 99% of the numerical abundance of fishes surveyed at RC and 96% at SA, which is the highest assemblage-level endemism known for any individual marine ecosystem on earth. Our results highlight the uniqueness and global significance of these biodiversity hotspots exposed to very different fishing pressures.

  6. Evolutionary Dynamics in the Southwest Indian Ocean Marine Biodiversity Hotspot: A Perspective from the Rocky Shore Gastropod Genus Nerita

    OpenAIRE

    Postaire, Bautisse; Bruggemann, Henrich J.; Magalon, Hélène; Faure, Baptiste

    2014-01-01

    International audience; The Southwest Indian Ocean (SWIO) is a striking marine biodiversity hotspot. Coral reefs in this region host a high proportion of endemics compared to total species richness and they are particularly threatened by human activities. The island archipelagos with their diverse marine habitats constitute a natural laboratory for studying diversification processes. Rocky shores in the SWIO region have remained understudied. This habitat presents a high diversity of molluscs...

  7. Impacts of people and tigers on leopard spatiotemporal activity patterns in a global biodiversity hotspot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neil Carter

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Leopard population declines largely occur in areas where leopards and people frequently interact. Research on how leopards respond to human presence and competitors, like other predators, can provide important insights on leopard ecology and conservation in human-dominated regions; however, such research is lacking. Here we used data from field cameras in 2010 and 2011 to examine how human presence, prey, and tigers influence leopard spatiotemporal activity patterns in and around Nepal’s Chitwan National Park, part of a global biodiversity hotspot. We found that leopards were adjusting their spatiotemporal activity patterns to both tigers and people, but by different mechanisms. Leopards spatially avoided tigers in 2010, but were generally active at the same times of day that tigers were. Despite pervasive human presence, people on foot and vehicles had no significant effect on leopard detection and space use, but leopard temporal activity was displaced from those periods of time with highest human activity. Temporal displacement from humans was especially pronounced outside the park, where there is a much greater prevalence of natural resource collection by local people. Continuing to evaluate the interconnections among leopards, tigers, prey, and people across different land management regimes is needed to develop robust landscape-scale conservation strategies.

  8. Recent origin and rapid speciation of Neotropical orchids in the world's richest plant biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Escobar, Oscar Alejandro; Chomicki, Guillaume; Condamine, Fabien L; Karremans, Adam P; Bogarín, Diego; Matzke, Nicholas J; Silvestro, Daniele; Antonelli, Alexandre

    2017-07-01

    The Andean mountains of South America are the most species-rich biodiversity hotspot worldwide with c. 15% of the world's plant species, in only 1% of the world's land surface. Orchids are a key element of the Andean flora, and one of the most prominent components of the Neotropical epiphyte diversity, yet very little is known about their origin and diversification. We address this knowledge gap by inferring the biogeographical history and diversification dynamics of the two largest Neotropical orchid groups (Cymbidieae and Pleurothallidinae), using two unparalleled, densely sampled orchid phylogenies (including more than 400 newly generated DNA sequences), comparative phylogenetic methods, geological and biological datasets. We find that the majority of Andean orchid lineages only originated in the last 20-15 million yr. Andean lineages are derived from lowland Amazonian ancestors, with additional contributions from Central America and the Antilles. Species diversification is correlated with Andean orogeny, and multiple migrations and recolonizations across the Andes indicate that mountains do not constrain orchid dispersal over long timescales. Our study sheds new light on the timing and geography of a major Neotropical diversification, and suggests that mountain uplift promotes species diversification across all elevational zones. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  9. Forests and drugs: coca-driven deforestation in tropical biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dávalos, Liliana M; Bejarano, Adriana C; Hall, Mark A; Correa, H Leonardo; Corthals, Angelique; Espejo, Oscar J

    2011-02-15

    Identifying drivers of deforestation in tropical biodiversity hotspots is critical to assess threats to particular ecosystems and species and proactively plan for conservation. We analyzed land cover change between 2002 and 2007 in the northern Andes, Chocó, and Amazon forests of Colombia, the largest producer of coca leaf for the global cocaine market, to quantify the impact of this illicit crop on forest dynamics, evaluate the effectiveness of protected areas in this context, and determine the effects of eradication on deforestation. Landscape-level analyses of forest conversion revealed that proximity to new coca plots and a greater proportion of an area planted with coca increased the probability of forest loss in southern Colombia, even after accounting for other covariates and spatial autocorrelation. We also showed that protected areas successfully reduced forest conversion in coca-growing regions. Neither eradication nor coca cultivation predicted deforestation rates across municipalities. Instead, the presence of new coca cultivation was an indicator of municipalities, where increasing population led to higher deforestation rates. We hypothesize that poor rural development underlies the relationship between population density and deforestation in coca-growing areas. Conservation in Colombia's vast forest frontier, which overlaps with its coca frontier, requires a mix of protected areas and strategic rural development to succeed.

  10. Patterns and perceptions of climate change in a biodiversity conservation hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartter, Joel; Stampone, Mary D; Ryan, Sadie J; Kirner, Karen; Chapman, Colin A; Goldman, Abraham

    2012-01-01

    Quantifying local people's perceptions to climate change, and their assessments of which changes matter, is fundamental to addressing the dual challenge of land conservation and poverty alleviation in densely populated tropical regions To develop appropriate policies and responses, it will be important not only to anticipate the nature of expected changes, but also how they are perceived, interpreted and adapted to by local residents. The Albertine Rift region in East Africa is one of the world's most threatened biodiversity hotspots due to dense smallholder agriculture, high levels of land and resource pressures, and habitat loss and conversion. Results of three separate household surveys conducted in the vicinity of Kibale National Park during the late 2000s indicate that farmers are concerned with variable precipitation. Many survey respondents reported that conditions are drier and rainfall timing is becoming less predictable. Analysis of daily rainfall data for the climate normal period 1981 to 2010 indicates that total rainfall both within and across seasons has not changed significantly, although the timing and transitions of seasons has been highly variable. Results of rainfall data analysis also indicate significant changes in the intra-seasonal rainfall distribution, including longer dry periods within rainy seasons, which may contribute to the perceived decrease in rainfall and can compromise food security. Our results highlight the need for fine-scale climate information to assist agro-ecological communities in developing effective adaptive management.

  11. Deforestation and Forest Fragmentation in South Ecuador since the 1970s - Losing a Hotspot of Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapia-Armijos, María Fernanda; Homeier, Jürgen; Espinosa, Carlos Iván; Leuschner, Christoph; de la Cruz, Marcelino

    2015-01-01

    Deforestation and fragmentation are major components of global change; both are contributing to the rapid loss of tropical forest area with important implications for ecosystem functioning and biodiversity conservation. The forests of South Ecuador are a biological 'hotspot' due to their high diversity and endemism levels. We examined the deforestation and fragmentation patterns in this area of high conservation value using aerial photographs and Aster satellite scenes. The registered annual deforestation rates of 0.75% (1976-1989) and 2.86% (1989-2008) for two consecutive survey periods, the decreasing mean patch size and the increasing isolation of the forest fragments show that the area is under severe threat. Approximately 46% of South Ecuador's original forest cover had been converted by 2008 into pastures and other anthropogenic land cover types. We found that deforestation is more intense at lower elevations (premontane evergreen forest and shrubland) and that the deforestation front currently moves in upslope direction. Improved awareness of the spatial extent, dynamics and patterns of deforestation and forest fragmentation is urgently needed in biologically diverse areas like South Ecuador.

  12. Student Teachers' Understanding of the Terminology, Distribution, and Loss of Biodiversity: Perspectives from a Biodiversity Hotspot and an Industrialized Country

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiebelkorn, Florian; Menzel, Susanne

    2013-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity is one of the most urgent global environmental problems of our time. Public education and awareness building is key to successful biodiversity protection. Knowledgeable and skilled student teachers are a key component for the successful implementation of biodiversity education in schools. Yet, little empirical evidence…

  13. Biogeography and speciation of terrestrial fauna in the south-western Australian biodiversity hotspot.

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    Rix, Michael G; Edwards, Danielle L; Byrne, Margaret; Harvey, Mark S; Joseph, Leo; Roberts, J Dale

    2015-08-01

    The south-western land division of Western Australia (SWWA), bordering the temperate Southern and Indian Oceans, is the only global biodiversity hotspot recognised in Australia. Renowned for its extraordinary diversity of endemic plants, and for some of the largest and most botanically significant temperate heathlands and woodlands on Earth, SWWA has long fascinated biogeographers. Its flat, highly weathered topography and the apparent absence of major geographic factors usually implicated in biotic diversification have challenged attempts to explain patterns of biogeography and mechanisms of speciation in the region. Botanical studies have always been central to understanding the biodiversity values of SWWA, although surprisingly few quantitative botanical analyses have allowed for an understanding of historical biogeographic processes in both space and time. Faunistic studies, by contrast, have played little or no role in defining hotspot concepts, despite several decades of accumulating quantitative research on the phylogeny and phylogeography of multiple lineages. In this review we critically analyse datasets with explicit supporting phylogenetic data and estimates of the time since divergence for all available elements of the terrestrial fauna, and compare these datasets to those available for plants. In situ speciation has played more of a role in shaping the south-western Australian fauna than has long been supposed, and has occurred in numerous endemic lineages of freshwater fish, frogs, reptiles, snails and less-vagile arthropods. By contrast, relatively low levels of endemism are found in birds, mammals and highly dispersive insects, and in situ speciation has played a negligible role in generating local endemism in birds and mammals. Quantitative studies provide evidence for at least four mechanisms driving patterns of endemism in south-western Australian animals, including: (i) relictualism of ancient Gondwanan or Pangaean taxa in the High Rainfall

  14. Consistent phenological shifts in the making of a biodiversity hotspot: the Cape flora

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    Quint Marcus

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The best documented survival responses of organisms to past climate change on short (glacial-interglacial timescales are distributional shifts. Despite ample evidence on such timescales for local adaptations of populations at specific sites, the long-term impacts of such changes on evolutionary significant units in response to past climatic change have been little documented. Here we use phylogenies to reconstruct changes in distribution and flowering ecology of the Cape flora - South Africa's biodiversity hotspot - through a period of past (Neogene and Quaternary changes in the seasonality of rainfall over a timescale of several million years. Results Forty-three distributional and phenological shifts consistent with past climatic change occur across the flora, and a comparable number of clades underwent adaptive changes in their flowering phenology (9 clades; half of the clades investigated as underwent distributional shifts (12 clades; two thirds of the clades investigated. Of extant Cape angiosperm species, 14-41% have been contributed by lineages that show distributional shifts consistent with past climate change, yet a similar proportion (14-55% arose from lineages that shifted flowering phenology. Conclusions Adaptive changes in ecology at the scale we uncover in the Cape and consistent with past climatic change have not been documented for other floras. Shifts in climate tolerance appear to have been more important in this flora than is currently appreciated, and lineages that underwent such shifts went on to contribute a high proportion of the flora's extant species diversity. That shifts in phenology, on an evolutionary timescale and on such a scale, have not yet been detected for other floras is likely a result of the method used; shifts in flowering phenology cannot be detected in the fossil record.

  15. Dramatic Declines of Montane Frogs in a Central African Biodiversity Hotspot

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    Hirschfeld, Mareike; Blackburn, David C.; Doherty-Bone, Thomas M.; Gonwouo, LeGrand Nono; Ghose, Sonia; Rödel, Mark-Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Amphibian populations are vanishing worldwide. Declines and extinctions of many populations have been attributed to chytridiomycosis, a disease induced by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). In Africa, however, changes in amphibian assemblages were typically attributed to habitat change. We conducted a retrospective study utilizing field surveys from 2004–2012 of the anuran faunas on two mountains in western Cameroon, a hotspot of African amphibian diversity. The number of species detected was negatively influenced by year, habitat degradation, and elevation, and we detected a decline of certain species. Because another study in this region revealed an emergence of Bd in 2008, we screened additional recent field-collected samples and also pre-decline preserved museum specimens for the presence of Bd supporting emergence before 2008. When comparing the years before and after Bd detection, we found significantly diminished frog species richness and abundance on both mountains after Bd emergence. Our analyses suggest that this may be the first disease-driven community-level decline in anuran biodiversity in Central Africa. The disappearance of several species known to tolerate habitat degradation, and a trend of stronger declines at higher elevations, are consistent with Bd-induced declines in other regions. Not all species decreased; populations of some species remained constant, and others increased after the emergence of Bd. This variation might be explained by species-specific differences in infection probability. Increased habitat protection and Bd-mitigation strategies are needed for sustaining diverse amphibian communities such as those on Mt. Manengouba, which contains nearly half of Cameroon’s frog diversity. PMID:27149624

  16. Dramatic Declines of Montane Frogs in a Central African Biodiversity Hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mareike Hirschfeld

    Full Text Available Amphibian populations are vanishing worldwide. Declines and extinctions of many populations have been attributed to chytridiomycosis, a disease induced by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd. In Africa, however, changes in amphibian assemblages were typically attributed to habitat change. We conducted a retrospective study utilizing field surveys from 2004-2012 of the anuran faunas on two mountains in western Cameroon, a hotspot of African amphibian diversity. The number of species detected was negatively influenced by year, habitat degradation, and elevation, and we detected a decline of certain species. Because another study in this region revealed an emergence of Bd in 2008, we screened additional recent field-collected samples and also pre-decline preserved museum specimens for the presence of Bd supporting emergence before 2008. When comparing the years before and after Bd detection, we found significantly diminished frog species richness and abundance on both mountains after Bd emergence. Our analyses suggest that this may be the first disease-driven community-level decline in anuran biodiversity in Central Africa. The disappearance of several species known to tolerate habitat degradation, and a trend of stronger declines at higher elevations, are consistent with Bd-induced declines in other regions. Not all species decreased; populations of some species remained constant, and others increased after the emergence of Bd. This variation might be explained by species-specific differences in infection probability. Increased habitat protection and Bd-mitigation strategies are needed for sustaining diverse amphibian communities such as those on Mt. Manengouba, which contains nearly half of Cameroon's frog diversity.

  17. Impacts of intensive logging on the trophic organisation of ant communities in a biodiversity hotspot.

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    Paul Woodcock

    Full Text Available Trophic organisation defines the flow of energy through ecosystems and is a key component of community structure. Widespread and intensifying anthropogenic disturbance threatens to disrupt trophic organisation by altering species composition and relative abundances and by driving shifts in the trophic ecology of species that persist in disturbed ecosystems. We examined how intensive disturbance caused by selective logging affects trophic organisation in the biodiversity hotspot of Sabah, Borneo. Using stable nitrogen isotopes, we quantified the positions in the food web of 159 leaf-litter ant species in unlogged and logged rainforest and tested four predictions: (i there is a negative relationship between the trophic position of a species in unlogged forest and its change in abundance following logging, (ii the trophic positions of species are altered by logging, (iii disturbance alters the frequency distribution of trophic positions within the ant assemblage, and (iv disturbance reduces food chain length. We found that ant abundance was 30% lower in logged forest than in unlogged forest but changes in abundance of individual species were not related to trophic position, providing no support for prediction (i. However, trophic positions of individual species were significantly higher in logged forest, supporting prediction (ii. Consequently, the frequency distribution of trophic positions differed significantly between unlogged and logged forest, supporting prediction (iii, and food chains were 0.2 trophic levels longer in logged forest, the opposite of prediction (iv. Our results demonstrate that disturbance can alter trophic organisation even without trophically-biased changes in community composition. Nonetheless, the absence of any reduction in food chain length in logged forest suggests that species-rich arthropod food webs do not experience trophic downgrading or a related collapse in trophic organisation despite the disturbance caused by

  18. Land cover change and carbon emissions over 100 years in an African biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willcock, Simon; Phillips, Oliver L; Platts, Philip J; Swetnam, Ruth D; Balmford, Andrew; Burgess, Neil D; Ahrends, Antje; Bayliss, Julian; Doggart, Nike; Doody, Kathryn; Fanning, Eibleis; Green, Jonathan M H; Hall, Jaclyn; Howell, Kim L; Lovett, Jon C; Marchant, Rob; Marshall, Andrew R; Mbilinyi, Boniface; Munishi, Pantaleon K T; Owen, Nisha; Topp-Jorgensen, Elmer J; Lewis, Simon L

    2016-08-01

    Agricultural expansion has resulted in both land use and land cover change (LULCC) across the tropics. However, the spatial and temporal patterns of such change and their resulting impacts are poorly understood, particularly for the presatellite era. Here, we quantify the LULCC history across the 33.9 million ha watershed of Tanzania's Eastern Arc Mountains, using geo-referenced and digitized historical land cover maps (dated 1908, 1923, 1949 and 2000). Our time series from this biodiversity hotspot shows that forest and savanna area both declined, by 74% (2.8 million ha) and 10% (2.9 million ha), respectively, between 1908 and 2000. This vegetation was replaced by a fivefold increase in cropland, from 1.2 million ha to 6.7 million ha. This LULCC implies a committed release of 0.9 Pg C (95% CI: 0.4-1.5) across the watershed for the same period, equivalent to 0.3 Mg C ha(-1)  yr(-1) . This is at least threefold higher than previous estimates from global models for the same study area. We then used the LULCC data from before and after protected area creation, as well as from areas where no protection was established, to analyse the effectiveness of legal protection on land cover change despite the underlying spatial variation in protected areas. We found that, between 1949 and 2000, forest expanded within legally protected areas, resulting in carbon uptake of 4.8 (3.8-5.7) Mg C ha(-1) , compared to a committed loss of 11.9 (7.2-16.6) Mg C ha(-1) within areas lacking such protection. Furthermore, for nine protected areas where LULCC data are available prior to and following establishment, we show that protection reduces deforestation rates by 150% relative to unprotected portions of the watershed. Our results highlight that considerable LULCC occurred prior to the satellite era, thus other data sources are required to better understand long-term land cover trends in the tropics. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. DNA barcoding of Rhododendron (Ericaceae), the largest Chinese plant genus in biodiversity hotspots of the Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Li-Jun; Liu, Jie; Möller, Michael; Zhang, Lin; Zhang, Xue-Mei; Li, De-Zhu; Gao, Lian-Ming

    2015-07-01

    The Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains encompass two global biodiversity hotspots with high levels of biodiversity and endemism. This area is one of the diversification centres of the genus Rhododendron, which is recognized as one of the most taxonomically challenging plant taxa due to recent adaptive radiations and rampant hybridization. In this study, four DNA barcodes were evaluated on 531 samples representing 173 species of seven sections of four subgenera in Rhododendron, with a high sampling density from the Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains employing three analytical methods. The varied approaches (nj, pwg and blast) had different species identification powers with blast performing best. With the pwg analysis, the discrimination rates for single barcodes varied from 12.21% to 25.19% with ITS Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Seed plant phylogenetic diversity and species richness in conservation planning within a global biodiversity hotspot in eastern Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Rong; Kraft, Nathan J B; Yu, Haiying; Li, Heng

    2015-12-01

    One of the main goals of conservation biology is to understand the factors shaping variation in biodiversity across the planet. This understanding is critical for conservation planners to be able to develop effective conservation strategies. Although many studies have focused on species richness and the protection of rare and endemic species, less attention has been paid to the protection of the phylogenetic dimension of biodiversity. We explored how phylogenetic diversity, species richness, and phylogenetic community structure vary in seed plant communities along an elevational gradient in a relatively understudied high mountain region, the Dulong Valley, in southeastern Tibet, China. As expected, phylogenetic diversity was well correlated with species richness among the elevational bands and among communities. At the community level, evergreen broad-leaved forests had the highest levels of species richness and phylogenetic diversity. Using null model analyses, we found evidence of nonrandom phylogenetic structure across the region. Evergreen broad-leaved forests were phylogenetically overdispersed, whereas other vegetation types tended to be phylogenetically clustered. We suggest that communities with high species richness or overdispersed phylogenetic structure should be a focus for biodiversity conservation within the Dulong Valley because these areas may help maximize the potential of this flora to respond to future global change. In biodiversity hotspots worldwide, we suggest that the phylogenetic structure of a community may serve as a useful measure of phylogenetic diversity in the context of conservation planning. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  1. Assessing Local and Surrounding Threats to the Protected Area Network in a Biodiversity Hotspot: The Hengduan Mountains of Southwest China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Xin; Liu, Guohua; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; Zeng, Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) not only serve as refuges of biodiversity conservation but are also part of large ecosystems and are vulnerable to change caused by human activity from surrounding lands, especially in biodiversity hotspots. Assessing threats to PAs and surrounding areas is therefore a critical step in effective conservation planning. We apply a threat framework as a means of quantitatively assessing local and surrounding threats to different types of PAs with gradient buffers, and to main ecoregions in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot of southwest China. Our findings show that national protected areas (NPAs) have lower and significantly lower threat values (pprotected areas (PPAs) and other protected areas (OPAs), respectively, which indicates that NPAs are lands with a lower threat level and higher levels of protection and management. PAs have clear edge effects, as the proportion of areas with low threat levels decline dramatically in the 5-kilometer buffers just outside the PAs. However, NPAs suffered greater declines (58.3%) than PPAs (34.8%) and OPAs (33.4%) in the 5-kilometer buffers. Moreover, a significant positive correlation was found between the size of PAs and the proportion of areas with low threat levels that they contained in both PAs and PA buffers (p<0.01). To control or mitigate current threats at the regional scale, PA managers often require quantitative information related to threat intensities and spatial distribution. The threat assessment in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot will be useful to policy makers and managers in their efforts to establish effective plans and target-oriented management strategies.

  2. Assessing Local and Surrounding Threats to the Protected Area Network in a Biodiversity Hotspot: The Hengduan Mountains of Southwest China.

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    Xin Ye

    Full Text Available Protected areas (PAs not only serve as refuges of biodiversity conservation but are also part of large ecosystems and are vulnerable to change caused by human activity from surrounding lands, especially in biodiversity hotspots. Assessing threats to PAs and surrounding areas is therefore a critical step in effective conservation planning. We apply a threat framework as a means of quantitatively assessing local and surrounding threats to different types of PAs with gradient buffers, and to main ecoregions in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot of southwest China. Our findings show that national protected areas (NPAs have lower and significantly lower threat values (p<0.05 than provincial protected areas (PPAs and other protected areas (OPAs, respectively, which indicates that NPAs are lands with a lower threat level and higher levels of protection and management. PAs have clear edge effects, as the proportion of areas with low threat levels decline dramatically in the 5-kilometer buffers just outside the PAs. However, NPAs suffered greater declines (58.3% than PPAs (34.8% and OPAs (33.4% in the 5-kilometer buffers. Moreover, a significant positive correlation was found between the size of PAs and the proportion of areas with low threat levels that they contained in both PAs and PA buffers (p<0.01. To control or mitigate current threats at the regional scale, PA managers often require quantitative information related to threat intensities and spatial distribution. The threat assessment in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot will be useful to policy makers and managers in their efforts to establish effective plans and target-oriented management strategies.

  3. What triggers the rising of an intraspecific biodiversity hotspot? Hints from the agile frog.

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    Canestrelli, Daniele; Bisconti, Roberta; Sacco, Florinda; Nascetti, Giuseppe

    2014-05-23

    Hotspots of genetic diversity are regions of utmost importance for species survival and conservation, and their intimate link with the geographic location of glacial refugia has been well established. Nonetheless, the microevolutionary processes underlying the generation of hotspots in such regions have only recently become a fervent field of research. We investigated the phylogeographic and population genetic structure of the agile frog, Rana dalmatina, within its putative refugium in peninsular Italy. We found this region to harbour far more diversity, phylogeographic structure, and lineages of ancient origin than that by the rest of the species' range in Europe. This pattern appeared to be well explained by climate-driven microevolutionary processes that occurred during both glacial and interglacial epochs. Therefore, the inferred evolutionary history of R. dalmatina in Italy supports a view of glacial refugia as 'factories' rather than as repositories of genetic diversity, with significant implications for conservation strategies for hotspots.

  4. Human interest meets biodiversity hotspots: A new systematic approach for urban ecosystem conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasada, Minoru; Matsuba, Misako; Miyashita, Tadashi

    2017-01-01

    Creating a win-win relationship between biodiversity and human well-being is one of the major current challenges for environmental policy. One way to approach this challenge is to identify sites with both high biodiversity and high human interest in urban areas. Here, we propose a new systematic approach to identify such sites by using land prices and biodiversity indexes for butterflies and birds from a nationwide perspective. As a result, we found sites that are valuable to humans and to other organisms, including national red-list species, and they are located in sites with cultural heritages and near seaside. By referencing the habitat features and landscape characteristics of these sites, we can establish high quality environments that provide a benefit to both humans and biodiversity in urban landscapes.

  5. Shifting migration patterns without genetic erosion: evidence from the Zamia pumila complex (Cycadales: Zamiaceae) at the northern of the Caribbean island biodiversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Bahamas archipelago is the northernmost land area of the Caribbean island biodiversity hotspot (CIBH). It is defined by several banks composed of quaternary carbonates that are tectonically stable. Such stability has provided direct geological evidence of global ice-volume changes that is valuab...

  6. Evidence of late Palaeocene-early Eocene equatorial rain forest refugia in southern Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasad, V; Farooqui, A; Tripathi, S K M; Garg, R; Thakur, B

    2009-11-01

    Equatorial rain forests that maintain a balance between speciation and extinction are hot-spots for studies of biodiversity. Western Ghats in southern India have gained attention due to high tropical biodiversity and endemism in their southern most area. We attempted to track the affinities of the pollen fl ora of the endemic plants of Western Ghat area within the fossil palynoflora of late Palaeocene-early Eocene (approximately 55-50 Ma) sedimentary deposits of western and northeastern Indian region. The study shows striking similarity of extant pollen with twenty eight most common fossil pollen taxa of the early Palaeogene. Widespread occurrences of coal and lignite deposits during early Palaeogene provide evidence of existence of well diversified rain forest community and swampy vegetation in the coastal low lying areas all along the western and northeastern margins of the Indian subcontinent. Prevalence of excessive humid climate during this period has been seen as a result of equatorial positioning of Indian subcontinent, superimposed by a long term global warming phase (PETM and EECO) during the early Palaeogene. The study presents clear evidence that highly diversifi ed equatorial rain forest vegetation once widespread in the Indian subcontinent during early Palaeogene times, are now restricted in a small area as a refugia in the southernmost part of the Western Ghat area. High precipitation and shorter periods of dry months seem to have provided suitable environment to sustain lineages of ancient tropical vegetation in this area of Western Ghats in spite of dramatic climatic changes subsequent to the post India-Asia collision and during the Quaternary and Recent times.

  7. Cheap carbon and biodiversity co-benefits from forest regeneration in a hotspot of endemism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilroy, James J.; Woodcock, Paul; Edwards, Felicity A.; Wheeler, Charlotte; Baptiste, Brigitte L. G.; Medina Uribe, Claudia A.; Haugaasen, Torbjørn; Edwards, David P.

    2014-06-01

    Climate change and biodiversity loss can be addressed simultaneously by well-planned conservation policies, but this requires information on the alignment of co-benefits under different management actions. One option is to allow forests to naturally regenerate on marginal agricultural land: a key question is whether this approach will deliver environmental co-benefits in an economically viable manner. Here we report on a survey of carbon stocks, biodiversity and economic values from one of the world's most endemic-rich and threatened ecosystems: the western Andes of Colombia. We show that naturally regenerating secondary forests accumulate significant carbon stocks within 30 years, and support biodiverse communities including many species at risk of extinction. Cattle farming, the principal land use in the region, provides minimal economic returns to local communities, making forest regeneration a viable option despite weak global carbon markets. Efforts to promote natural forest regeneration in the tropical Andes could therefore provide globally significant carbon and biodiversity co-benefits at minimal cost.

  8. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure – assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

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    G. Kostoski

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so-called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact.

    Lake Ohrid, a major European biodiversity hotspot situated in a trans-frontier setting on the Balkans, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes.

    Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1 assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic biodiversity, (2 summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3 outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1 watershed impacts, (2 agriculture and forestry, (3 tourism and population growth, (4 non-indigenous species, (5 habitat alteration or loss, (6 unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7 global climate change.

    Among the major (well-known threats with high impact are nutrient input (particularly of phosphorus, habitat conversion and silt load. Other threats are potentially of high impact but less well known. Such threats include pollution with hazardous substances (from sources such as mines, former industries, agriculture or climate change. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species

  9. Impact of Dams on Riparian Frog Communities in the Southern Western Ghats, India

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    Rohit Naniwadekar

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The Western Ghats is a global biodiversity hotspot and home to diverse and unique assemblages of amphibians. Several rivers originate from these mountains and hydropower is being tapped from them. The impacts of hydrological regulation of riparian ecosystems to wildlife and its habitat are poorly documented, and in particular the fate of frog populations is unknown. We examined the effects of dams on riparian frog communities in the Thamirabarani catchment in southern Western Ghats. We used nocturnal visual encounter surveys constrained for time, to document the species richness of frogs below and above the dam, and also at control sites in the same catchment. While we did not find differences in species richness below and above the dams, the frog community composition was significantly altered as a likely consequence of altered flow regime. The frog species compositions in control sites were similar to above-dam sites. Below-dam sites had a distinctly different species composition. Select endemic frog species appeared to be adversely impacted due to the dams. Below-dam sites had a greater proportion of generalist and widely distributed species. Dams in the Western Ghats appeared to adversely impact population of endemic species, particularly those belonging to the genus Nyctibatrachus that shows specialization for intact streams.

  10. Glaciations, gradients, and geography: multiple drivers of diversification of bush frogs in the Western Ghats Escarpment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayakumar, S P; Menezes, Riya C; Jayarajan, Aditi; Shanker, Kartik

    2016-08-17

    The historical processes underlying high diversity in tropical biodiversity hotspots like the Western Ghats of Peninsular India remain poorly understood. We sampled bush frogs on 13 massifs across the Western Ghats Escarpment and examined the relative influence of Quaternary glaciations, ecological gradients and geological processes on the spatial patterns of lineage and clade diversification. The results reveal a large in situ radiation (more than 60 lineages), exhibiting geographical structure and clade-level endemism, with two deeply divergent sister clades, North and South, highlighting the biogeographic significance of an ancient valley, the Palghat Gap. A majority of the bush frog sister lineages were isolated on adjacent massifs, and signatures of range stasis provide support for the dominance of geological processes in allopatric speciation. In situ diversification events within the montane zones (more than 1800 m) of the two highest massifs suggest a role for climate-mediated forest-grassland persistence. Independent transitions along elevational gradients among sub-clades during the Miocene point to diversification along the elevational gradient. The study highlights the evolutionary significance of massifs in the Western Ghats with the high elevations acting as centres of lineage diversification and the low- and mid-elevations of the southern regions, with deeply divergent lineages, serving as museums. © 2016 The Author(s).

  11. Insights and Opportunities Offered by a Rapid Ecosystem Service Assessment in Promoting a Conservation Agenda in an Urban Biodiversity Hotspot

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    Patrick J. O'Farrell

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Regional and global scale ecosystem service assessments have demonstrated the socioeconomic value of protecting biodiversity and have been integrated into associated policy. Local government decision makers are still unsure of the applicability, return on investment, and usefulness of these assessments in aiding their decision making. Cape Town, a developing city in a globally recognized biodiversity hotspot, has numerous competing land uses. City managers, with a tightly constrained budget, requested an exploratory study on the links between ecosystem services and biodiversity conservation within this municipal area. We set out to develop and test a simple and rapid ecosystem service assessment method aimed at determining the contribution natural vegetation remnants make to ecosystem service provision. We took selected services, identified in conjunction with city managers, and assessed these in two ways. First we used an area weighted approach to attribute services to vegetation types and assessed how these had changed through time and into the future given development needs. Second, we did a regulatory and cultural service remnant distance analysis to better understand proximity effects and linkages. Provisioning services were found to have been most severely affected through vegetation transformation. Regulatory services have been similarly affected, and these losses are more significant because regulatory services can only function in situ and cannot be outsourced in the way provisioning services can. The most significant losses were in coastal zone protection and flood mitigation services, both of which will be placed under even greater pressure given the predicted changes in climatic regimes. The role of remnant vegetation in regulating and cultural services was shown to be a significant additional consideration in making the case for conservation in the city. Our rapid assessment approach does not allow for nuanced and individual

  12. Habitat selection of endemic birds in temperate forests in a biodiversity "Hotspot"

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    Roberto A. Moreno-García

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Aim of study: Our objective was to find habitat associations at a microhabitat level for two endemic birds in a Chilean temperate forest (biodiversity “hotspots”, in order to integrate biodiversity into forest planning.Area of study: Nahuelbuta Range, Chile.Material and methods: The two birds studied were Scelorchilus rubecula (Chucao Tapaculo and Scytalopus magellanicus (Magellanic Tapaculo, both belonging to the Rhinocryptidae family. Presence or absence of the two species was sampled in 57 census spots. Habitat was categorized according to presence/absence results. We assessed the influence of abiotic variables (altitude, exposure, slope and vegetation structure (percentage of understory cover, number of strata using a statistical cluster analysis.Main results: The two bird species selected the habitat. Most frequent presence was detected at a range of 600-1100 masl, but Magellanic Tapaculo was associated to more protected sites in terms of vegetation structure (50-75% for understory cover and 2-3 strata. Slope was the most relevant abiotic variable in habitat selection due to its linkage to vegetation traits in this area.Research highlights: Our results can help managers to integrate biodiversity (endemic fauna species into forest planning by preserving certain traits of the vegetation as part of a habitat (at a microhabitat level selected by the fauna species. That planning should be implemented with both an adequate wood harvesting cuts system and specific silvicultural treatments.Key words: Chile; Nahuelbuta; rhinocryptidae; cluster analysis; rorest planning; vegetation structure.

  13. Biodiversity of the Arabian Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Parulekar, A.H.

    stream_size 2 stream_content_type text/plain stream_name Biodiversity_Western_Ghats_Inf_Kit_1994_3.1_1.pdf.txt stream_source_info Biodiversity_Western_Ghats_Inf_Kit_1994_3.1_1.pdf.txt Content-Encoding ISO-8859-1 Content-Type text...

  14. A Bayesian Spatial Model Highlights Distinct Dynamics in Deforestation from Coca and Pastures in an Andean Biodiversity Hotspot

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    Maria Alejandra Chadid

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The loss of tropical forests has continued in recent decades despite wide recognition of their importance to maintaining biodiversity. Here, we examine the conversion of forests to pastures and coca crops (illicit activity on the San Lucas Mountain Range, Colombia for 2002–2007 and 2007–2010. Land use maps and biophysical variables were used as inputs to generate land use and cover change (LUCC models using the DINAMICA EGO software. These analyses revealed a dramatic acceleration of the pace of deforestation in the region, with rates of conversion from forest to pasture doubling from the first to the second period. Altitude, distance to other crops, and distance to rivers were the primary drivers of deforestation. The influence of these drivers, however, differed markedly depending on whether coca cultivation or pastures replaced forest. Conversion to coca was more probable farther from other crops and from settlements. In contrast, proximity to other crops and to settlements increased conversion to pasture. These relationships highlight the different roles of coca and pastures in forest loss, with coca tending to open up new forest frontiers, and pastures tending to consolidate agricultural expansion and urban influence. Large differences between LUCC processes for each period suggest highly dynamic changes, likely associated with shifting underlying causes of deforestation. These changes may relate to shifts in demand for illicit crops, land, or mining products; however, the data to test these hypotheses are currently lacking. More frequent and detailed monitoring is required to guide actions to decrease the loss of forest in this highly vulnerable biodiversity hotspot in the Northern Andes.

  15. Evolutionary dynamics in the southwest Indian ocean marine biodiversity hotspot: a perspective from the rocky shore gastropod genus Nerita.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Postaire, Bautisse; Bruggemann, J Henrich; Magalon, Hélène; Faure, Baptiste

    2014-01-01

    The Southwest Indian Ocean (SWIO) is a striking marine biodiversity hotspot. Coral reefs in this region host a high proportion of endemics compared to total species richness and they are particularly threatened by human activities. The island archipelagos with their diverse marine habitats constitute a natural laboratory for studying diversification processes. Rocky shores in the SWIO region have remained understudied. This habitat presents a high diversity of molluscs, in particular gastropods. To explore the role of climatic and geological factors in lineage diversification within the genus Nerita, we constructed a new phylogeny with an associated chronogram from two mitochondrial genes [cytochrome oxidase sub-unit 1 and 16S rRNA], combining previously published and new data from eight species sampled throughout the region. All species from the SWIO originated less than 20 Ma ago, their closest extant relatives living in the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA). Furthermore, the SWIO clades within species with Indo-Pacific distribution ranges are quite recent, less than 5 Ma. These results suggest that the regional diversification of Nerita is closely linked to tectonic events in the SWIO region. The Reunion mantle plume head reached Earth's surface 67 Ma and has been stable and active since then, generating island archipelagos, some of which are partly below sea level today. Since the Miocene, sea-level fluctuations have intermittently created new rocky shore habitats. These represent ephemeral stepping-stones, which have likely facilitated repeated colonization by intertidal gastropods, like Nerita populations from the IAA, leading to allopatric speciation. This highlights the importance of taking into account past climatic and geological factors when studying diversification of highly dispersive tropical marine species. It also underlines the unique history of the marine biodiversity of the SWIO region.

  16. Evolutionary dynamics in the southwest Indian ocean marine biodiversity hotspot: a perspective from the rocky shore gastropod genus Nerita.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bautisse Postaire

    Full Text Available The Southwest Indian Ocean (SWIO is a striking marine biodiversity hotspot. Coral reefs in this region host a high proportion of endemics compared to total species richness and they are particularly threatened by human activities. The island archipelagos with their diverse marine habitats constitute a natural laboratory for studying diversification processes. Rocky shores in the SWIO region have remained understudied. This habitat presents a high diversity of molluscs, in particular gastropods. To explore the role of climatic and geological factors in lineage diversification within the genus Nerita, we constructed a new phylogeny with an associated chronogram from two mitochondrial genes [cytochrome oxidase sub-unit 1 and 16S rRNA], combining previously published and new data from eight species sampled throughout the region. All species from the SWIO originated less than 20 Ma ago, their closest extant relatives living in the Indo-Australian Archipelago (IAA. Furthermore, the SWIO clades within species with Indo-Pacific distribution ranges are quite recent, less than 5 Ma. These results suggest that the regional diversification of Nerita is closely linked to tectonic events in the SWIO region. The Reunion mantle plume head reached Earth's surface 67 Ma and has been stable and active since then, generating island archipelagos, some of which are partly below sea level today. Since the Miocene, sea-level fluctuations have intermittently created new rocky shore habitats. These represent ephemeral stepping-stones, which have likely facilitated repeated colonization by intertidal gastropods, like Nerita populations from the IAA, leading to allopatric speciation. This highlights the importance of taking into account past climatic and geological factors when studying diversification of highly dispersive tropical marine species. It also underlines the unique history of the marine biodiversity of the SWIO region.

  17. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Rediscovery of the threatened Western Ghats endemic sisorid catfish Glyptothorax poonaensis (Teleostei: Siluriformes: Sisoridae

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    N. Dahanukar

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Glyptothorax poonaensis Hora is an endemic sisorid catfish of the Western Ghats of India known only from its type locality in Mula-Mutha River, a tributary of Bhima River, at Pune. This fish has not been recorded from its type locality for more than 70 years and it was thought to be extinct. Here we report a recently discovered population of G. poonaensis from Indrayani River, a tributary of Bhima River. Based on 11 specimens, we have redescribed this species along with some comments on its taxonomy, length-weight relationship, feeding and breeding habits. We also performed molecular phylogeny of the fish by sequencing three mitochondrial genes encoding 16S ribosomal DNA, cytochrome b and cytochrome oxidase subunit I. Molecular analysis suggests that G. poonaensis is nested within a lineage of Glyptothorax species from northern and northeastern India and China. Further, our analysis reveals that southern Indian species of Glyptothorax do not form a monophyletic group. Molecular dating of divergence times indicates that G. poonaensis diverged from other northern Indian species 1.9 to 2.5 million years ago. Current knowledge suggests that the species could be found in two river basins with total extent of around 6100km2; however, the species is already suspected to be locally extinct from half of its known extent of occurrence. Furthermore, the habitat of the species may be threatened by increasing pollution, deforestation leading to siltation, halting of flow by damming, sandmining and introduced fish species. In the light of biodiversity conservation, especially in an important biodiversity hotspot like Western Ghats, such rare and endemic species needs prioritization.

  18. Evolutionary persistence in Gunnera and the contribution of southern plant groups to the tropical Andes biodiversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velásquez-Puentes, Francisco J.; Hinojosa, Luis Felipe; Schwartz, Thomas; Oxelman, Bengt; Pfeil, Bernard; Arroyo, Mary T.K.; Wanntorp, Livia; Antonelli, Alexandre

    2018-01-01

    Several studies have demonstrated the contribution of northern immigrants to the flora of the tropical Andes—the world’s richest and most diverse biodiversity hotspot. However, much less is known about the biogeographic history and diversification of Andean groups with southern origins, although it has been suggested that northern and southern groups have contributed roughly equally to the high Andean (i.e., páramo) flora. Here we infer the evolutionary history of the southern hemisphere plant genus Gunnera, a lineage with a rich fossil history and an important ecological role as an early colonising species characteristic of wet, montane environments. Our results show striking contrasts in species diversification, where some species may have persisted for some 90 million years, and whereas others date to less than 2 Ma since origination. The outstanding longevity of the group is likely linked to a high degree of niche conservatism across its highly disjunct range, whereby Gunnera tracks damp and boggy soils in cool habitats. Colonisation of the northern Andes is related to Quaternary climate change, with subsequent rapid diversification appearing to be driven by their ability to take advantage of environmental opportunities. This study demonstrates the composite origin of a mega-diverse biota. PMID:29576938

  19. Adaptation and convergent evolution within the Jamesonia-Eriosorus complex in high-elevation biodiverse Andean hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Baracaldo, Patricia; Thomas, Gavin H

    2014-01-01

    The recent uplift of the tropical Andes (since the late Pliocene or early Pleistocene) provided extensive ecological opportunity for evolutionary radiations. We test for phylogenetic and morphological evidence of adaptive radiation and convergent evolution to novel habitats (exposed, high-altitude páramo habitats) in the Andean fern genera Jamesonia and Eriosorus. We construct time-calibrated phylogenies for the Jamesonia-Eriosorus clade. We then use recent phylogenetic comparative methods to test for evolutionary transitions among habitats, associations between habitat and leaf morphology, and ecologically driven variation in the rate of morphological evolution. Páramo species (Jamesonia) display morphological adaptations consistent with convergent evolution in response to the demands of a highly exposed environment but these adaptations are associated with microhabitat use rather than the páramo per se. Species that are associated with exposed microhabitats (including Jamesonia and Eriorsorus) are characterized by many but short pinnae per frond whereas species occupying sheltered microhabitats (primarily Eriosorus) have few but long pinnae per frond. Pinnae length declines more rapidly with altitude in sheltered species. Rates of speciation are significantly higher among páramo than non-páramo lineages supporting the hypothesis of adaptation and divergence in the unique Páramo biodiversity hotspot.

  20. Carving out turf in a biodiversity hotspot: multiple, previously unrecognized shrew species co-occur on Java Island, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esselstyn, Jacob A; Maharadatunkamsi; Achmadi, Anang S; Siler, Cameron D; Evans, Ben J

    2013-10-01

    In theory, competition among species in a shared habitat results in niche separation. In the case of small recondite mammals such as shrews, little is known about their autecologies, leaving open questions regarding the degree to which closely related species co-occur and how or whether ecological niches are partitioned. The extent to which species are able to coexist may depend on the degree to which they exploit different features of their habitat, which may in turn influence our ability to recognize them as species. We explored these issues in a biodiversity hotspot, by surveying shrew (genus Crocidura) diversity on the Indonesian island of Java. We sequenced portions of nine unlinked genes in 100-117 specimens of Javan shrews and incorporated homologous data from most known Crocidura species from other parts of island South-East Asia. Current taxonomy recognizes four Crocidura species on Java, including two endemics. However, our phylogenetic, population genetic and species delimitation analyses identify five species on the island, and all are endemic to Java. While the individual ranges of these species may not overlap in their entirety, we found up to four species living syntopically and all five species co-occurring on one mountain. Differences in species' body size, use of above ground-level habitats by one species and habitat partitioning along ecological gradients may have facilitated species diversification and coexistence. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Analysing fragmentation in vulnerable biodiversity hotspots in Tanzania from 1975 to 2012 using remote sensing and fragstats

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    M.M. Ojoyi

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Habitat fragmentation is a threat to conservation of biodiversity hotspots in the Morogoro region, Tanzania. However, on-going research on fragmentation has not kept pace with temporal lapses and how individual species respond to habitat transformation and heterogeneity. This study sought to model spatial and temporal fragmentation patterns. Cloud free multi-temporal Landsat imagery with similar spectral resolution were acquired in the same season in 1975, 1995 and 2012. The images were used to characterize the biophysical landscape characteristics and a range of metrics used to quantify the magnitude of fragmentation. Patches and classes in the landscape were assessed using Fragstats, a spatial statistics program useful in computing landscape metrics. Results show that patch number was higher in dense forest and woodland than in less dense forest and grassland in 1975, 1995 and 2012 while the interspersion Juxtaposition Index (IJI ranged between 0 (for clumped patches and 100 (for grassland. In 1975 and 1995, the grassland habitat had the highest IJI while in 2012 less dense forest had the highest IJI. The Games-Howell test showed a significant fragmentation trend in less dense forests class (p≤0.05. Generally, the study indicates a high fragmentation pattern in the vulnerable tropical eastern arc mountain region of East Africa. This finding demonstrates the value of remotely sensed data in understanding the impact of anthropogenic processes on natural landscape transformation. Furthermore, the study provides a basis for informed conservation policy design and implementation in the region.

  2. Investigation on the biotrophic interaction of Ustilago esculenta on Zizania latifolia found in the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jose, Robinson C; Goyari, Sailendra; Louis, Bengyella; Waikhom, Sayanika D; Handique, Pratap J; Talukdar, Narayan C

    2016-09-01

    Ustilago esculenta is a uniquely flavored biotrophic smut fungus that forms a smut gall on the top internodal region of Zizania latifolia, a perennial wild rice found in the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot. The smut gall is an edible vegetable locally called "kambong" in Manipur, India. The life cycle of the fungus was studied in vitro and its biotrophism was observed during different stages of the plant growth starting from the bud stage to decaying stage using light, fluorescent and electron microscopy. The size of the smut gall and the number of internodes below the apical smut gall varied significantly (P < 0.05). Examination of various parts of infected plants using culture methods, microscopy and polymerase chain reaction revealed that Ustilago esculenta colonized Zizania latifolia in a non-systemic manner. Spores and fragmented hyphae of U. esculenta were present in the rhizome of infected plant throughout the year, but shoot interiors were without any fungal structures from April until September. The smut region of infected plants in early September to December were heavily sporulated with fragmented hyphae, while the nodal regions of infected plants had no spores and fragmented hyphae. Hyphae and spores were also absent in the internodes and membranes aboveground up to smut region of infected plants but were present in the old rhizomes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. A biodiversity hotspot losing its top predator: The challenge of jaguar conservation in the Atlantic Forest of South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paviolo, Agustin; De Angelo, Carlos; Ferraz, Katia M P M B; Morato, Ronaldo G; Martinez Pardo, Julia; Srbek-Araujo, Ana C; Beisiegel, Beatriz de Mello; Lima, Fernando; Sana, Denis; Xavier da Silva, Marina; Velázquez, Myriam C; Cullen, Laury; Crawshaw, Peter; Jorge, María Luisa S P; Galetti, Pedro M; Di Bitetti, Mario S; de Paula, Rogerio Cunha; Eizirik, Eduardo; Aide, T Mitchell; Cruz, Paula; Perilli, Miriam L L; Souza, Andiara S M C; Quiroga, Verónica; Nakano, Eduardo; Ramírez Pinto, Fredy; Fernández, Sixto; Costa, Sebastian; Moraes, Edsel A; Azevedo, Fernando

    2016-11-16

    The jaguar is the top predator of the Atlantic Forest (AF), which is a highly threatened biodiversity hotspot that occurs in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. By combining data sets from 14 research groups across the region, we determine the population status of the jaguar and propose a spatial prioritization for conservation actions. About 85% of the jaguar's habitat in the AF has been lost and only 7% remains in good condition. Jaguars persist in around 2.8% of the region, and live in very low densities in most of the areas. The population of jaguars in the AF is probably lower than 300 individuals scattered in small sub-populations. We identified seven Jaguar Conservation Units (JCUs) and seven potential JCUs, and only three of these areas may have ≥50 individuals. A connectivity analysis shows that most of the JCUs are isolated. Habitat loss and fragmentation were the major causes for jaguar decline, but human induced mortality is the main threat for the remaining population. We classified areas according to their contribution to jaguar conservation and we recommend management actions for each of them. The methodology in this study could be used for conservation planning of other carnivore species.

  4. Rapid Diversification and Time Explain Amphibian Richness at Different Scales in the Tropical Andes, Earth's Most Biodiverse Hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutter, Carl R; Lambert, Shea M; Wiens, John J

    2017-12-01

    The Tropical Andes make up Earth's most species-rich biodiversity hotspot for both animals and plants. Nevertheless, the ecological and evolutionary processes underlying this extraordinary richness remain uncertain. Here, we examine the processes that generate high richness in the Tropical Andes relative to other regions in South America and across different elevations within the Andes, using frogs as a model system. We combine distributional data, a newly generated time-calibrated phylogeny for 2,318 frog species, and phylogenetic comparative methods to test the relative importance of diversification rates and colonization times for explaining Andean diversity at different scales. At larger scales (among regions and families), we find that faster diversification rates in Andean clades most likely explain high Andean richness. In contrast, at smaller temporal and spatial scales (within family-level clades within the Andes), diversification rates rarely explain richness patterns. Instead, we show that colonization times are important for shaping elevational richness patterns within the Andes, with more species found in habitats colonized earlier. We suggest that these scale-dependent patterns might apply to many other richness gradients. Recognition of this scale dependence may help to reconcile conflicting results among studies of richness patterns across habitats, regions, and organisms.

  5. Population-level genetic variation and climate change in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schierenbeck, Kristina A

    2017-01-01

    Estimated future climate scenarios can be used to predict where hotspots of endemism may occur over the next century, but life history, ecological and genetic traits will be important in informing the varying responses within myriad taxa. Essential to predicting the consequences of climate change to individual species will be an understanding of the factors that drive genetic structure within and among populations. Here, I review the factors that influence the genetic structure of plant species in California, but are applicable elsewhere; existing levels of genetic variation, life history and ecological characteristics will affect the ability of an individual taxon to persist in the presence of anthropogenic change. Persistence in the face of climate change is likely determined by life history characteristics: dispersal ability, generation time, reproductive ability, degree of habitat specialization, plant-insect interactions, existing genetic diversity and availability of habitat or migration corridors. Existing levels of genetic diversity in plant populations vary based on a number of evolutionary scenarios that include endemism, expansion since the last glacial maximum, breeding system and current range sizes. A number of well-documented examples are provided from the California Floristic Province. Some predictions can be made for the responses of plant taxa to rapid environmental changes based on geographic position, evolutionary history, existing genetic variation, and ecological amplitude. The prediction of how species will respond to climate change will require a synthesis drawing from population genetics, geography, palaeontology and ecology. The important integration of the historical factors that have shaped the distribution and existing genetic structure of California's plant taxa will enable us to predict and prioritize the conservation of species and areas most likely to be impacted by rapid climate change, human disturbance and invasive species.

  6. Climate change and early human land-use in a biodiversity hotspot, the Afromontane region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivory, S.; Russell, J. M.; Sax, D. F.; Early, R.

    2015-12-01

    African ecosystems are at great risk due to climate and land-use change. Paleo-records illustrate that changes in precipitation and temperature have led to dramatic alterations of African vegetation distribution over the Quaternary; however, despite the fact that the link between mankind and the environment has a longer history in the African tropics than anywhere else on earth, very little is known about pre-colonial land-use. Disentangling the influence of each is particularly critical in areas of exceptional biodiversity and endemism, such as the Afromontane forest region. This region is generally considered to be highly sensitive to temperature and thus at risk to future climate change. However, new evidence suggests that some high elevation species may have occupied warmer areas in the past and thus are not strongly limited by temperature and may be at greater risk from intensifying land-use. First, we use species distribution models constructed from modern and paleo-distributions of high elevation forests in order to evaluate differences in the climatic space occupied today compared to the past. We find that although modern Afromontane species ranges occupy very narrow climate conditions, and in particular that most species occur only in cold areas, in the past most species have tolerated warmer conditions. This suggests that many montane tree species are not currently limited by warm temperatures, and that the region has already seen significant reduction in the climate space occupied, possibly from Holocene land-use. Second, to evaluate human impacts on montane populations, we examine paleoecological records from lakes throughout sub-Saharan Africa that capture ecological processes at difference time scales to reconstruct Afromontane forest range changes. Over long time scales, we observe phases of forest expansion in the lowlands associated with climate variability alone where composition varies little from phase to phase but include both modern low and

  7. Does logging and forest conversion to oil palm agriculture alter functional diversity in a biodiversity hotspot?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, F A; Edwards, D P; Larsen, T H; Hsu, W W; Benedick, S; Chung, A; Vun Khen, C; Wilcove, D S; Hamer, K C

    2014-04-01

    Forests in Southeast Asia are rapidly being logged and converted to oil palm. These changes in land-use are known to affect species diversity but consequences for the functional diversity of species assemblages are poorly understood. Environmental filtering of species with similar traits could lead to disproportionate reductions in trait diversity in degraded habitats. Here, we focus on dung beetles, which play a key role in ecosystem processes such as nutrient recycling and seed dispersal. We use morphological and behavioural traits to calculate a variety of functional diversity measures across a gradient of disturbance from primary forest through intensively logged forest to oil palm. Logging caused significant shifts in community composition but had very little effect on functional diversity, even after a repeated timber harvest. These data provide evidence for functional redundancy of dung beetles within primary forest and emphasize the high value of logged forests as refugia for biodiversity. In contrast, conversion of forest to oil palm greatly reduced taxonomic and functional diversity, with a marked decrease in the abundance of nocturnal foragers, a higher proportion of species with small body sizes and the complete loss of telecoprid species (dung-rollers), all indicating a decrease in the functional capacity of dung beetles within plantations. These changes also highlight the vulnerability of community functioning within logged forests in the event of further environmental degradation.

  8. Future habitat loss and extinctions driven by land-use change in biodiversity hotspots under four scenarios of climate-change mitigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jantz, Samuel M; Barker, Brian; Brooks, Thomas M; Chini, Louise P; Huang, Qiongyu; Moore, Rachel M; Noel, Jacob; Hurtt, George C

    2015-08-01

    Numerous species have been pushed into extinction as an increasing portion of Earth's land surface has been appropriated for human enterprise. In the future, global biodiversity will be affected by both climate change and land-use change, the latter of which is currently the primary driver of species extinctions. How societies address climate change will critically affect biodiversity because climate-change mitigation policies will reduce direct climate-change impacts; however, these policies will influence land-use decisions, which could have negative impacts on habitat for a substantial number of species. We assessed the potential impact future climate policy could have on the loss of habitable area in biodiversity hotspots due to associated land-use changes. We estimated past extinctions from historical land-use changes (1500-2005) based on the global gridded land-use data used for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report and habitat extent and species data for each hotspot. We then estimated potential extinctions due to future land-use changes under alternative climate-change scenarios (2005-2100). Future land-use changes are projected to reduce natural vegetative cover by 26-58% in the hotspots. As a consequence, the number of additional species extinctions, relative to those already incurred between 1500 and 2005, due to land-use change by 2100 across all hotspots ranged from about 220 to 21000 (0.2% to 16%), depending on the climate-change mitigation scenario and biological factors such as the slope of the species-area relationship and the contribution of wood harvest to extinctions. These estimates of potential future extinctions were driven by land-use change only and likely would have been higher if the direct effects of climate change had been considered. Future extinctions could potentially be reduced by incorporating habitat preservation into scenario development to reduce projected future land-use changes in hotspots or by

  9. Identifying monitoring gaps for amphibian populations in a North American biodiversity hotspot, the southeastern USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walls, Susan

    2014-01-01

    I review the primary literature to ascertain the status of amphibian monitoring efforts in the southeastern USA, a “hotspot” for biodiversity in North America. This effort revealed taxonomic, geographic and ecological disparities in studies of amphibian populations in this region. Of the species of anurans and caudates known to occur in the Southeast, 73.8 and 33.3 %, respectively, have been monitored continuously for at least 4 years. Anurans are generally shorter-lived than are caudates and, thus, have been studied for the equivalent of at least one population turnover more than have caudates. The percentage of species (of those occurring in a given state) monitored continuously for at least 4 years was lowest for Alabama and Mississippi and highest for Florida for both taxa. The vast majority of studies (69.6 %) were conducted on species that inhabit natural freshwater wetlands, in contrast to other aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Species considered threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature comprised only 7.7 % of 65 species that have been studied consistently. The majority of comparative studies of contemporary versus historical occurrences were potentially biased by the use of “presence-only” historical data and resurveys of short duration. Other issues, such as inadequate temporal and spatial scale and neglect of different sources of error, were common. Awareness of these data gaps and sampling and statistical issues may help facilitate informed decisions in setting future monitoring priorities, particularly with respect to species, habitats and locations that have been largely overlooked in past and ongoing studies.

  10. Evolutionary and natural history of the turtle frog, Myobatrachus gouldii, a bizarre myobatrachid frog in the southwestern Australian biodiversity hotspot.

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    Samantha Vertucci

    Full Text Available Southwest Australia (SWA is a global biodiversity hotspot and a centre of diversity and endemism for the Australo-Papuan myobatrachid frogs. Myobatrachus gouldii (the turtle frog has a highly derived morphology associated with its forward burrowing behaviour, largely subterranean habit, and unusual mode of reproduction. Its sister genera Metacrinia and Arenophryne have restricted distributions in Western Australia with significant phylogeographic structure, leading to the recent description of a new species in the latter. In contrast, Myobatrachus is distributed widely throughout SWA over multiple climatic zones, but little is known of its population structure, geographic variation in morphology, or reproduction. We generated molecular and morphological data to test for genetic and morphological variation, and to assess whether substrate specialisation in this species may have led to phylogeographic structuring similar to that of other plant and animal taxa in SWA. We assembled sequence data for one mitochondrial and four nuclear DNA loci (3628 base pairs for 42 turtle frogs sampled throughout their range. Likelihood phylogenetic analyses revealed shallow phylogeographic structure in the mtDNA locus (up to 3.3% genetic distance and little variation in three of the four nDNA loci. The mtDNA haplotype network suggests five geographically allopatric groups, with no shared haplotypes between regions. These geographic patterns are congruent with several other SWA species, with genetic groups restricted to major hydrological divisions, the Swan Coastal Plain, and the Darling Scarp. The geographically structured genetic groups showed no evidence of significant morphological differentiation (242 individuals, and there was little sexual size dimorphism, but subtle differences in reproductive traits suggest more opportunistic breeding in lower rainfall zones. Call data were compared to sister genera Metacrinia and Arenophryne and found to be highly

  11. Identifying orchid hotspots for biodiversity conservation in Laos: the limestone karst vegetation of Vang Vieng District, Vientiane Province

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    Pankaj Kumar

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A project to study the phytodiversity of the Indo-Burma Biodiversity Hotspot (IBBH was initiated by Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden, Hong Kong, in 2011, with the aim of surveying primary forest fragments and identifying conservation priorities within this expansive but highly threatened ecoregion. Vang Vieng District of Vientiane Province, northern Laos, was chosen as a focus for a pilot expedition, since it features an extensive karst landscape that has barely been explored. Together with officials from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of Lao PDR, surveys of three sites were conducted in April 2012, at the end of the dry northeast monsoon season. Emphasis was placed on Orchidaceae because it is among the most species-rich and commercially exploited flowering plant families in the region. A total of 179 specimens were collected, of which approximately 135 were unique taxa accounting for 29.6% of the orchids found in Laos and 5.8% of those found in IBBH as a whole, and equivalent to 0.27 species/hectare within the area surveyed, substantially higher than published figures for other limestone areas in the region, such as Cuc Phuong National Park in Vietnam (0.0055 species/hectare and Perlis State in Peninsular Malaysia (0.0036 species/hectare.  At least one is a species new to science, nine represent new distributional records for Laos and a further nine are new records for Vientiane Province. A list of the species encountered during the study is presented and the significance of the findings is discussed. Major threats to the natural environment in northern Laos are highlighted.

  12. A new cichlid fish in the Sahara: The Ounianga Serir lakes (Chad), a biodiversity hotspot in the desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trape, Sébastien

    In the rare perennial bodies of water of the Sahara desert, only a few fish species have survived to increasing aridification since the end of the last humid period at the Holocene, approximately 5000 years BP. Here, I report the occurrence of an undescribed haplochomine cichlid fish in Lake Boukou, one of the seven Ounianga Serir lakes (Chad). These lakes are located in one of the most arid areas of the Sahara desert, but they persist by virtue of subsurface inflow of fresh groundwater from a large fossil aquifer. Astatotilapia tchadensis sp. nov. is characterized by a black bar between eye and corner of mouth, rounded orange spots on anal fin, scales ctenoid, lower limb of first gill arch with 7-8 gill rackers, dorsal fin with 13-14 spines and 9-11 soft rays, anal fin with 3 spines and 8-9 soft rays, 29 or 30 lateral line scales, and lower pharyngeal dentition with enlarged molariform teeth. The new species is easily distinguished from A. desfontainii and A. flaviijosephii, the northernmost haplochromine species currently isolated from its other group members, and appears close to an unnamed species of Lake Chad basin. Ounianga Serir lakes and especially Lake Boukou present a remarkable diversity of fish, the highest known in the Sahara desert with a total of at least six fish species belonging to six genera and three families. They also constitute an exceptional natural landscape inscribed on the UNESCO world heritage list in 2012 and a biodiversity hotspot for desert vertebrate species. Copyright © 2016 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  13. Preferential flow paths in paraglacial catchments: first order controls on the long-term stability of 'biodiversity hotspots' in a changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grocott, Michael; Kettridge, Nick; Bradley, Chris; Milner, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Groundwater (GW) -fed streams within paraglacial floodplains are considered 'biodiversity hotspots', given their importance as an aquatic ecosystem and role in supporting valuable riverine habitat patches within paraglacial environments. However, it is anticipated that throughout the 21st Century hydrologic regimes of paraglacial systems in arctic, sub-arctic, and alpine regions globally will experience substantial changes, as a consequence of anthropogenic climate change. Declining glacial coverage, shrinking winter snowpack, earlier spring melt, rising permafrost melt and increasing relative importance of groundwater will all cause major changes in the water balance of paraglacial catchments. This research explored the importance of preferential flow pathways (PFPs) as conduits of subsurface flow across paraglacial floodplains, and their role in sustaining 'biodiversity hotspots'. Furthermore, it considered the role of PFPs in hillslope-floodplain connectivity within paraglacial systems and the significance of colluvial deposits as a key water source to GW-fed streams on paraglacial floodplains. An intra-catchment scale field study within ungauged catchments was conducted in Denali National Park & Preserve, Alaska, during 2013 and 2014. The research utilised hydrogeomorphic and hydrochemical field techniques to address the aims outlined above. Surface infiltration and slug tests identified significant spatial heterogeneity in hydraulic conductivity (K) across the surface and subsurface of paraglacial floodplains, indicating the presence of PFPs. Furthermore, spatiotemporal variation in geochemical tracers (major ions) within surface and subsurface flow paths established the role of multiple, discrete flow paths (PFPs) in sustaining GW-fed streamflow on floodplains. Finally, hydrograph separations confirmed the significant contribution made by colluvial deposits (e.g. talus slopes) to sustaining GW-fed streamflow on paraglacial research. This research suggests

  14. Does environmental certification in coffee promote "business as usual"? A case study from the Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose, Arshiya; Vira, Bhaskar; Garcia, Claude

    2016-12-01

    Conservation initiatives are designed to address threats to forests and biodiversity, often through partnerships with natural-resource users who are incentivized to change their land-use and livelihood practices to avoid further biodiversity loss. In particular, direct incentives programmes that provide monetary benefits are commended for being effective in achieving conservation across short timescales. In biodiversity-rich areas, outside protected areas, such as coffee agroforestry systems, direct incentives, such as certification schemes, are used to motivate coffee producers to maintain native tree species, natural vegetation, restrict wildlife hunting, and conserve soil and water, in addition to encouraging welfare of workers. However, despite these claims, there is a lack of strong evidence of the on-ground impact of such schemes. To assess the conservation importance of certification, we describe a case study in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot of India, in which coffee growers are provided price incentives to adopt Rainforest Alliance certification standards. We analyse the conservation and social outcomes of this programme by studying peoples' experiences of participating in certification. Despite high compliance and effective implementation, we find a strong case for the endorsement of 'business as usual' with no changes in farm management as a result of certification. We find that such 'business as usual' participation in certification creates grounds for diminishing credibility and local support for conservation efforts. Working towards locally relevant conservation interventions, rather than implementing global blueprints, may lead to more meaningful biodiversity conservation and increased community support for conservation initiatives in coffee landscapes.

  15. Ecosystem services, land-cover change, and stakeholders: finding a sustainable foothold for a semiarid biodiversity hotspot

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Reyers, B

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available ecosystems. The high biodiversity value of the area, along with the pressures on this biodiversity, have resulted in the Little Karoo being identified as an area of conservation importance by three internationally funded conservation and development... programs (the Cape Action Plan for People and the Environment, the Subtropical Thicket Ecosystem Program, and the Succulent Karoo Ecosystem Plan), each of which identified a suite of projects for achieving conservation-related objectives in the Little...

  16. Rescuing Perishable Neuroanatomical Information from a Threatened Biodiversity Hotspot: Remote Field Methods for Brain Tissue Preservation Validated by Cytoarchitectonic Analysis, Immunohistochemistry, and X-Ray Microcomputed Tomography.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel F Hughes

    Full Text Available Biodiversity hotspots, which harbor more endemic species than elsewhere on Earth, are increasingly threatened. There is a need to accelerate collection efforts in these regions before threatened or endangered species become extinct. The diverse geographical, ecological, genetic, morphological, and behavioral data generated from the on-site collection of an individual specimen are useful for many scientific purposes. However, traditional methods for specimen preparation in the field do not permit researchers to retrieve neuroanatomical data, disregarding potentially useful data for increasing our understanding of brain diversity. These data have helped clarify brain evolution, deciphered relationships between structure and function, and revealed constraints and selective pressures that provide context about the evolution of complex behavior. Here, we report our field-testing of two commonly used laboratory-based techniques for brain preservation while on a collecting expedition in the Congo Basin and Albertine Rift, two poorly known regions associated with the Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot. First, we found that transcardial perfusion fixation and long-term brain storage, conducted in remote field conditions with no access to cold storage laboratory equipment, had no observable impact on cytoarchitectural features of lizard brain tissue when compared to lizard brain tissue processed under laboratory conditions. Second, field-perfused brain tissue subjected to prolonged post-fixation remained readily compatible with subsequent immunohistochemical detection of neural antigens, with immunostaining that was comparable to that of laboratory-perfused brain tissue. Third, immersion-fixation of lizard brains, prepared under identical environmental conditions, was readily compatible with subsequent iodine-enhanced X-ray microcomputed tomography, which facilitated the non-destructive imaging of the intact brain within its skull. In summary, we

  17. Rescuing Perishable Neuroanatomical Information from a Threatened Biodiversity Hotspot: Remote Field Methods for Brain Tissue Preservation Validated by Cytoarchitectonic Analysis, Immunohistochemistry, and X-Ray Microcomputed Tomography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Daniel F; Walker, Ellen M; Gignac, Paul M; Martinez, Anais; Negishi, Kenichiro; Lieb, Carl S; Greenbaum, Eli; Khan, Arshad M

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity hotspots, which harbor more endemic species than elsewhere on Earth, are increasingly threatened. There is a need to accelerate collection efforts in these regions before threatened or endangered species become extinct. The diverse geographical, ecological, genetic, morphological, and behavioral data generated from the on-site collection of an individual specimen are useful for many scientific purposes. However, traditional methods for specimen preparation in the field do not permit researchers to retrieve neuroanatomical data, disregarding potentially useful data for increasing our understanding of brain diversity. These data have helped clarify brain evolution, deciphered relationships between structure and function, and revealed constraints and selective pressures that provide context about the evolution of complex behavior. Here, we report our field-testing of two commonly used laboratory-based techniques for brain preservation while on a collecting expedition in the Congo Basin and Albertine Rift, two poorly known regions associated with the Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot. First, we found that transcardial perfusion fixation and long-term brain storage, conducted in remote field conditions with no access to cold storage laboratory equipment, had no observable impact on cytoarchitectural features of lizard brain tissue when compared to lizard brain tissue processed under laboratory conditions. Second, field-perfused brain tissue subjected to prolonged post-fixation remained readily compatible with subsequent immunohistochemical detection of neural antigens, with immunostaining that was comparable to that of laboratory-perfused brain tissue. Third, immersion-fixation of lizard brains, prepared under identical environmental conditions, was readily compatible with subsequent iodine-enhanced X-ray microcomputed tomography, which facilitated the non-destructive imaging of the intact brain within its skull. In summary, we have validated

  18. Modeling the impact of climate change on wild Piper nigrum (Black Pepper) in Western Ghats, India using ecological niche models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sen, Sandeep; Gode, Ameya; Ramanujam, Srirama; Ravikanth, G; Aravind, N A

    2016-11-01

    The center of diversity of Piper nigrum L. (Black Pepper), one of the highly valued spice crops is reported to be from India. Black pepper is naturally distributed in India in the Western Ghats biodiversity hotspot and is the only known existing source of its wild germplasm in the world. We used ecological niche models to predict the potential distribution of wild P. nigrum in the present and two future climate change scenarios viz (A1B) and (A2A) for the year 2080. Three topographic and nine uncorrelated bioclim variables were used to develop the niche models. The environmental variables influencing the distribution of wild P. nigrum across different climate change scenarios were identified. We also assessed the direction and magnitude of the niche centroid shift and the change in niche breadth to estimate the impact of projected climate change on the distribution of P. nigrum. The study shows a niche centroid shift in the future climate scenarios. Both the projected future climate scenarios predicted a reduction in the habitat of P. nigrum in Southern Western Ghats, which harbors many wild accessions of P. nigrum. Our results highlight the impact of future climate change on P. nigrum and provide useful information for designing sound germplasm conservation strategies for P. nigrum.

  19. Mapping the Forest Type and Land Cover of Puerto Rico, a Component of the Caribbean Biodiversity Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eileen Helmer; Olga Ramos; T. DEL M. LÓPEZ; Maya Quinones; W. DIAZ

    2002-01-01

    The Caribbean is one of the world’s centers of biodiversity and endemism. As in similar regions, many of its islands have complex topography, climate and soils, and ecological zones change over small areas. A segmented, supervised classification approach using Landsat TM imagery enabled us to develop the most detailed island-wide map of Puerto Rico’s extremely complex...

  20. Predicting plant diversity patterns in Madagascar: understanding the effects of climate and land cover change in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerry A Brown

    Full Text Available Climate and land cover change are driving a major reorganization of terrestrial biotic communities in tropical ecosystems. In an effort to understand how biodiversity patterns in the tropics will respond to individual and combined effects of these two drivers of environmental change, we use species distribution models (SDMs calibrated for recent climate and land cover variables and projected to future scenarios to predict changes in diversity patterns in Madagascar. We collected occurrence records for 828 plant genera and 2186 plant species. We developed three scenarios, (i.e., climate only, land cover only and combined climate-land cover based on recent and future climate and land cover variables. We used this modelling framework to investigate how the impacts of changes to climate and land cover influenced biodiversity across ecoregions and elevation bands. There were large-scale climate- and land cover-driven changes in plant biodiversity across Madagascar, including both losses and gains in diversity. The sharpest declines in biodiversity were projected for the eastern escarpment and high elevation ecosystems. Sharp declines in diversity were driven by the combined climate-land cover scenarios; however, there were subtle, region-specific differences in model outputs for each scenario, where certain regions experienced relatively higher species loss under climate or land cover only models. We strongly caution that predicted future gains in plant diversity will depend on the development and maintenance of dispersal pathways that connect current and future suitable habitats. The forecast for Madagascar's plant diversity in the face of future environmental change is worrying: regional diversity will continue to decrease in response to the combined effects of climate and land cover change, with habitats such as ericoid thickets and eastern lowland and sub-humid forests particularly vulnerable into the future.

  1. Predicting Plant Diversity Patterns in Madagascar: Understanding the Effects of Climate and Land Cover Change in a Biodiversity Hotspot

    OpenAIRE

    Brown, Kerry A.; Parks, Katherine E.; Bethell, Colin A.; Johnson, Steig E.; Mulligan, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Climate and land cover change are driving a major reorganization of terrestrial biotic communities in tropical ecosystems. In an effort to understand how biodiversity patterns in the tropics will respond to individual and combined effects of these two drivers of environmental change, we use species distribution models (SDMs) calibrated for recent climate and land cover variables and projected to future scenarios to predict changes in diversity patterns in Madagascar. We collected occurrence r...

  2. Predicting plant diversity patterns in Madagascar: understanding the effects of climate and land cover change in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Kerry A; Parks, Katherine E; Bethell, Colin A; Johnson, Steig E; Mulligan, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Climate and land cover change are driving a major reorganization of terrestrial biotic communities in tropical ecosystems. In an effort to understand how biodiversity patterns in the tropics will respond to individual and combined effects of these two drivers of environmental change, we use species distribution models (SDMs) calibrated for recent climate and land cover variables and projected to future scenarios to predict changes in diversity patterns in Madagascar. We collected occurrence records for 828 plant genera and 2186 plant species. We developed three scenarios, (i.e., climate only, land cover only and combined climate-land cover) based on recent and future climate and land cover variables. We used this modelling framework to investigate how the impacts of changes to climate and land cover influenced biodiversity across ecoregions and elevation bands. There were large-scale climate- and land cover-driven changes in plant biodiversity across Madagascar, including both losses and gains in diversity. The sharpest declines in biodiversity were projected for the eastern escarpment and high elevation ecosystems. Sharp declines in diversity were driven by the combined climate-land cover scenarios; however, there were subtle, region-specific differences in model outputs for each scenario, where certain regions experienced relatively higher species loss under climate or land cover only models. We strongly caution that predicted future gains in plant diversity will depend on the development and maintenance of dispersal pathways that connect current and future suitable habitats. The forecast for Madagascar's plant diversity in the face of future environmental change is worrying: regional diversity will continue to decrease in response to the combined effects of climate and land cover change, with habitats such as ericoid thickets and eastern lowland and sub-humid forests particularly vulnerable into the future.

  3. Global forecasts of urban expansion to 2030 and direct impacts on biodiversity and carbon pools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seto, Karen C; Güneralp, Burak; Hutyra, Lucy R

    2012-10-02

    Urban land-cover change threatens biodiversity and affects ecosystem productivity through loss of habitat, biomass, and carbon storage. However, despite projections that world urban populations will increase to nearly 5 billion by 2030, little is known about future locations, magnitudes, and rates of urban expansion. Here we develop spatially explicit probabilistic forecasts of global urban land-cover change and explore the direct impacts on biodiversity hotspots and tropical carbon biomass. If current trends in population density continue and all areas with high probabilities of urban expansion undergo change, then by 2030, urban land cover will increase by 1.2 million km(2), nearly tripling the global urban land area circa 2000. This increase would result in considerable loss of habitats in key biodiversity hotspots, with the highest rates of forecasted urban growth to take place in regions that were relatively undisturbed by urban development in 2000: the Eastern Afromontane, the Guinean Forests of West Africa, and the Western Ghats and Sri Lanka hotspots. Within the pan-tropics, loss in vegetation biomass from areas with high probability of urban expansion is estimated to be 1.38 PgC (0.05 PgC yr(-1)), equal to ∼5% of emissions from tropical deforestation and land-use change. Although urbanization is often considered a local issue, the aggregate global impacts of projected urban expansion will require significant policy changes to affect future growth trajectories to minimize global biodiversity and vegetation carbon losses.

  4. Unraveling the diversification history of grasshoppers belonging to the “Trimerotropis pallidipennis” (Oedipodinae: Acrididae species group: a hotspot of biodiversity in the Central Andes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noelia Verónica Guzmán

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The Andean Mountain range has been recognized as one of the biodiversity hotspots of the world. The proposed mechanisms for such species diversification, among others, are due to the elevation processes occurring during the Miocene and the intensive glacial action during the Pleistocene. In this study we investigated the diversification history of the grasshopper Trimerotropis pallidipennis species complex which shows a particularly wide latitudinal and altitudinal distribution range across the northern, central and southern Andes in South America. Many genetic lineages of this complex have been so far discovered, making it an excellent model to investigate the role of the central Andes Mountains together with climatic fluctuations as drivers of speciation. Phylogenetics, biogeographic and molecular clock analyses using a multi-locus dataset revealed that in Peru there are at least two, and possibly four genetic lineages. Two different stocks originated from a common ancestor from North/Central America—would have dispersed toward southern latitudes favored by the closure of the Panama Isthmus giving rise to two lineages, the coastal and mountain lineages, which still coexist in Peru (i.e., T. pallidipennis and T. andeana. Subsequent vicariant and dispersal events continued the differentiation process, giving rise to three to six genetic lineages (i.e., clades detected in this study, which were geographically restricted to locations dispersed over the central Andes Mountains in South America. Our results provide another interesting example of “island diversification” motored by the topography plus unstable climatic conditions during the Pleistocene, pointing out the presence of a hotspot of diversification in the Andean region of Peru.

  5. Creating larger and better connected protected areas enhances the persistence of big game species in the maputaland-pondoland-albany biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrico Di Minin

    Full Text Available The ideal conservation planning approach would enable decision-makers to use population viability analysis to assess the effects of management strategies and threats on all species at the landscape level. However, the lack of high-quality data derived from long-term studies, and uncertainty in model parameters and/or structure, often limit the use of population models to only a few species of conservation concern. We used spatially explicit metapopulation models in conjunction with multi-criteria decision analysis to assess how species-specific threats and management interventions would affect the persistence of African wild dog, black rhino, cheetah, elephant, leopard and lion, under six reserve scenarios, thereby providing the basis for deciding on a best course of conservation action in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal, which forms the central component of the Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany biodiversity hotspot. Overall, the results suggest that current strategies of managing populations within individual, small, fenced reserves are unlikely to enhance metapopulation persistence should catastrophic events affect populations in the future. Creating larger and better-connected protected areas would ensure that threats can be better mitigated in the future for both African wild dog and leopard, which can disperse naturally, and black rhino, cheetah, elephant, and lion, which are constrained by electric fences but can be managed using translocation. The importance of both size and connectivity should inform endangered megafauna conservation and management, especially in the context of restoration efforts in increasingly human-dominated landscapes.

  6. Creating Larger and Better Connected Protected Areas Enhances the Persistence of Big Game Species in the Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany Biodiversity Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Minin, Enrico; Hunter, Luke T. B.; Balme, Guy A.; Smith, Robert J.; Goodman, Peter S.; Slotow, Rob

    2013-01-01

    The ideal conservation planning approach would enable decision-makers to use population viability analysis to assess the effects of management strategies and threats on all species at the landscape level. However, the lack of high-quality data derived from long-term studies, and uncertainty in model parameters and/or structure, often limit the use of population models to only a few species of conservation concern. We used spatially explicit metapopulation models in conjunction with multi-criteria decision analysis to assess how species-specific threats and management interventions would affect the persistence of African wild dog, black rhino, cheetah, elephant, leopard and lion, under six reserve scenarios, thereby providing the basis for deciding on a best course of conservation action in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal, which forms the central component of the Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany biodiversity hotspot. Overall, the results suggest that current strategies of managing populations within individual, small, fenced reserves are unlikely to enhance metapopulation persistence should catastrophic events affect populations in the future. Creating larger and better-connected protected areas would ensure that threats can be better mitigated in the future for both African wild dog and leopard, which can disperse naturally, and black rhino, cheetah, elephant, and lion, which are constrained by electric fences but can be managed using translocation. The importance of both size and connectivity should inform endangered megafauna conservation and management, especially in the context of restoration efforts in increasingly human-dominated landscapes. PMID:23977144

  7. Relations between species rarity, vulnerability, and range contraction for a beetle group in a densely populated region in the Mediterranean biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fattorini, Simone

    2014-02-01

    Rarity is often considered an indication of species extinction risk, and it is frequently used to obtain measures of species vulnerability. However, there is no strong evidence of a correlation between species vulnerability and threat. Moreover, there is no consensus about how rarity should be measured. I used a multidimensional characterization of species rarity to calculate a vulnerability index for tenebrionid beetles inhabiting an Italian region in the Mediterranean biodiversity hotspot. I used different metrics to examine 3 dimensions of rarity: species range, ecology, and population. Species with rarity values below the median were scored as rare for each dimension. I combined rarity scores into a vulnerability index. I then correlated species vulnerability with range trends (expanded vs. contracted). Different measures of the same rarity dimension were strongly correlated and produced similar vulnerability scores. This result indicates rarity-based vulnerability estimates are slightly affected by the way a certain rarity dimension is measured. Vulnerability was correlated with range trends; species with the highest vulnerability had the strongest range contraction. However, a large number of common species also underwent range contraction in the last 50 years, and there was no clear relation between range contraction and their ecology. This indicates that in general human-induced environmental changes affected species irrespective of their assumed vulnerability and that focusing only on rare species may severely bias perceptions of the extent of species decline. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. Deforestation and Forest Fragmentation in South Ecuador since the 1970s – Losing a Hotspot of Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapia-Armijos, María Fernanda; Homeier, Jürgen; Espinosa, Carlos Iván; Leuschner, Christoph; de la Cruz, Marcelino

    2015-01-01

    Deforestation and fragmentation are major components of global change; both are contributing to the rapid loss of tropical forest area with important implications for ecosystem functioning and biodiversity conservation. The forests of South Ecuador are a biological ‘hotspot’ due to their high diversity and endemism levels. We examined the deforestation and fragmentation patterns in this area of high conservation value using aerial photographs and Aster satellite scenes. The registered annual deforestation rates of 0.75% (1976–1989) and 2.86% (1989–2008) for two consecutive survey periods, the decreasing mean patch size and the increasing isolation of the forest fragments show that the area is under severe threat. Approximately 46% of South Ecuador’s original forest cover had been converted by 2008 into pastures and other anthropogenic land cover types. We found that deforestation is more intense at lower elevations (premontane evergreen forest and shrubland) and that the deforestation front currently moves in upslope direction. Improved awareness of the spatial extent, dynamics and patterns of deforestation and forest fragmentation is urgently needed in biologically diverse areas like South Ecuador. PMID:26332681

  9. The influence of floral traits on specialization and modularity of plant–pollinator networks in a biodiversity hotspot in the Peruvian Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Stella; Dormann, Carsten F.; Martín González, Ana M.; Ollerton, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    Background and Aims Modularity is a ubiquitous and important structural property of ecological networks which describes the relative strengths of sets of interacting species and gives insights into the dynamics of ecological communities. However, this has rarely been studied in species-rich, tropical plant–pollinator networks. Working in a biodiversity hotspot in the Peruvian Andes we assessed the structure of quantitative plant–pollinator networks in nine valleys, quantifying modularity among networks, defining the topological roles of species and the influence of floral traits on specialization. Methods A total of 90 transects were surveyed for plants and pollinators at different altitudes and across different life zones. Quantitative modularity (QuanBiMo) was used to detect modularity and six indices were used to quantify specialization. Key Results All networks were highly structured, moderately specialized and significantly modular regardless of size. The strongest hubs were Baccharis plants, Apis mellifera, Bombus funebris and Diptera spp., which were the most ubiquitous and abundant species with the longest phenologies. Species strength showed a strong association with the modular structure of plant–pollinator networks. Hubs and connectors were the most centralized participants in the networks and were ranked highest (high generalization) when quantifying specialization with most indices. However, complementary specialization d' quantified hubs and connectors as moderately specialized. Specialization and topological roles of species were remarkably constant across some sites, but highly variable in others. Networks were dominated by ecologically and functionally generalist plant species with open access flowers which are closely related taxonomically with similar morphology and rewards. Plants associated with hummingbirds had the highest level of complementary specialization and exclusivity in modules (functional specialists) and the longest corollas

  10. First large-scale DNA barcoding assessment of reptiles in the biodiversity hotspot of Madagascar, based on newly designed COI primers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, Zoltán T; Sonet, Gontran; Glaw, Frank; Vences, Miguel

    2012-01-01

    DNA barcoding of non-avian reptiles based on the cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) gene is still in a very early stage, mainly due to technical problems. Using a newly developed set of reptile-specific primers for COI we present the first comprehensive study targeting the entire reptile fauna of the fourth-largest island in the world, the biodiversity hotspot of Madagascar. Representatives of the majority of Madagascan non-avian reptile species (including Squamata and Testudines) were sampled and successfully DNA barcoded. The new primer pair achieved a constantly high success rate (72.7-100%) for most squamates. More than 250 species of reptiles (out of the 393 described ones; representing around 64% of the known diversity of species) were barcoded. The average interspecific genetic distance within families ranged from a low of 13.4% in the Boidae to a high of 29.8% in the Gekkonidae. Using the average genetic divergence between sister species as a threshold, 41-48 new candidate (undescribed) species were identified. Simulations were used to evaluate the performance of DNA barcoding as a function of completeness of taxon sampling and fragment length. Compared with available multi-gene phylogenies, DNA barcoding correctly assigned most samples to species, genus and family with high confidence and the analysis of fewer taxa resulted in an increased number of well supported lineages. Shorter marker-lengths generally decreased the number of well supported nodes, but even mini-barcodes of 100 bp correctly assigned many samples to genus and family. The new protocols might help to promote DNA barcoding of reptiles and the established library of reference DNA barcodes will facilitate the molecular identification of Madagascan reptiles. Our results might be useful to easily recognize undescribed diversity (i.e. novel taxa), to resolve taxonomic problems, and to monitor the international pet trade without specialized expert knowledge.

  11. Insect pollination and self-incompatibility in edible and/or medicinal crops in southwestern China, a global hotspot of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Zong-Xin; Wang, Hong; Bernhardt, Peter; Li, De-Zhu

    2014-10-01

    An increasing global demand for food, coupled with the widespread decline of pollinator diversity, remains an international concern in agriculture and genetic conservation. In particular, there are large gaps in the study of the pollination of economically important and traditionally grown species in China. Many plant species grown in China are both edible and used medicinally. The country retains extensive written records of agricultural and apicultural practices, facilitating contemporary studies of some important taxa. Here, we focus on Yunnan in southwestern China, a mega-biodiversity hotspot for medicinal/food plants. We used plant and insect taxa as model systems to understand the patterns and consequences of pollinator deficit to crops. We identified several gaps and limitations in research on the pollination ecology and breeding systems of domesticated taxa and their wild relatives in Yunnan and asked the following questions: (1) What is known about pollination systems of edible and medicinal plants in Yunnan? (2) What are the most important pollinators of Codonopsis subglobosa (Campanulaceae)? (3) How important are native pollinator species for maximizing yield in Chinese crops compared with the introduced Apis mellifera? We found that some crops that require cross-pollination now depend exclusively on hand pollination. Three domesticated crops are dependent primarily on the native but semidomesticated Apis cerana and the introduced A. mellifera. Other species of wild pollinators often play important roles for certain specialty crops (e.g., Vespa velutina pollinates Codonopsis subglobosa). We propose a more systematic and comprehensive approach to applied research in the future. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  12. The influence of floral traits on specialization and modularity of plant-pollinator networks in a biodiversity hotspot in the Peruvian Andes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Stella; Dormann, Carsten F; Martín González, Ana M; Ollerton, Jeff

    2016-09-01

    Modularity is a ubiquitous and important structural property of ecological networks which describes the relative strengths of sets of interacting species and gives insights into the dynamics of ecological communities. However, this has rarely been studied in species-rich, tropical plant-pollinator networks. Working in a biodiversity hotspot in the Peruvian Andes we assessed the structure of quantitative plant-pollinator networks in nine valleys, quantifying modularity among networks, defining the topological roles of species and the influence of floral traits on specialization. A total of 90 transects were surveyed for plants and pollinators at different altitudes and across different life zones. Quantitative modularity (QuanBiMo) was used to detect modularity and six indices were used to quantify specialization. All networks were highly structured, moderately specialized and significantly modular regardless of size. The strongest hubs were Baccharis plants, Apis mellifera, Bombus funebris and Diptera spp., which were the most ubiquitous and abundant species with the longest phenologies. Species strength showed a strong association with the modular structure of plant-pollinator networks. Hubs and connectors were the most centralized participants in the networks and were ranked highest (high generalization) when quantifying specialization with most indices. However, complementary specialization d' quantified hubs and connectors as moderately specialized. Specialization and topological roles of species were remarkably constant across some sites, but highly variable in others. Networks were dominated by ecologically and functionally generalist plant species with open access flowers which are closely related taxonomically with similar morphology and rewards. Plants associated with hummingbirds had the highest level of complementary specialization and exclusivity in modules (functional specialists) and the longest corollas. We have demonstrated that the topology of

  13. Assessing the effects of multiple stressors on the recruitment of fruit harvested trees in a tropical dry forest, Western Ghats, India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita Varghese

    Full Text Available The harvest of non-timber forest products (NTFPs, together with other sources of anthropogenic disturbance, impact plant populations greatly. Despite this, conservation research on NTFPs typically focuses on harvest alone, ignoring possible confounding effects of other anthropogenic and ecological factors. Disentangling anthropogenic disturbances is critical in regions such as India's Western Ghats, a biodiversity hotspot with high human density. Identifying strategies that permit both use and conservation of resources is essential to preserving biodiversity while meeting local needs. We assessed the effects of NTFP harvesting (fruit harvest from canopy and lopping of branches for fruit in combination with other common anthropogenic disturbances (cattle grazing, fire frequency and distance from village, in order to identify which stressors have greater effects on recruitment of three tropical dry forest fruit tree species. Specifically, we assessed the structure of 54 populations of Phyllanthus emblica, P. indofischeri and Terminalia chebula spread across the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Western Ghats to ask: (1 How are populations recruiting? and (2 What anthropogenic disturbance and environmental factors, specifically forest type and elevation, are the most important predictors of recruitment status? We combined participatory research with an information-theoretic model-averaging approach to determine which factors most affect population structure and recruitment status. Our models illustrate that for T. chebula, high fire frequency and high fruit harvest intensity decreased the proportion of saplings, while lopping branches or stems to obtain fruit increased it. For Phyllanthus spp, recruitment was significantly lower in plots with more frequent fire. Indices of recruitment of both species were significantly higher for plots in more open-canopy environments of savanna woodlands than in dry forests. Our research illustrates an approach for

  14. Assessing the effects of multiple stressors on the recruitment of fruit harvested trees in a tropical dry forest, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varghese, Anita; Ticktin, Tamara; Mandle, Lisa; Nath, Snehlata

    2015-01-01

    The harvest of non-timber forest products (NTFPs), together with other sources of anthropogenic disturbance, impact plant populations greatly. Despite this, conservation research on NTFPs typically focuses on harvest alone, ignoring possible confounding effects of other anthropogenic and ecological factors. Disentangling anthropogenic disturbances is critical in regions such as India's Western Ghats, a biodiversity hotspot with high human density. Identifying strategies that permit both use and conservation of resources is essential to preserving biodiversity while meeting local needs. We assessed the effects of NTFP harvesting (fruit harvest from canopy and lopping of branches for fruit) in combination with other common anthropogenic disturbances (cattle grazing, fire frequency and distance from village), in order to identify which stressors have greater effects on recruitment of three tropical dry forest fruit tree species. Specifically, we assessed the structure of 54 populations of Phyllanthus emblica, P. indofischeri and Terminalia chebula spread across the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Western Ghats to ask: (1) How are populations recruiting? and (2) What anthropogenic disturbance and environmental factors, specifically forest type and elevation, are the most important predictors of recruitment status? We combined participatory research with an information-theoretic model-averaging approach to determine which factors most affect population structure and recruitment status. Our models illustrate that for T. chebula, high fire frequency and high fruit harvest intensity decreased the proportion of saplings, while lopping branches or stems to obtain fruit increased it. For Phyllanthus spp, recruitment was significantly lower in plots with more frequent fire. Indices of recruitment of both species were significantly higher for plots in more open-canopy environments of savanna woodlands than in dry forests. Our research illustrates an approach for identifying which

  15. Hydro-climatic variability over the Andes of Colombia associated with ENSO: a review of climatic processes and their impact on one of the Earth's most important biodiversity hotspots

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poveda, German; Alvarez, Diana M. [Universidad Nacional de Colombia, School of Geosciences and Environment, Medellin (Colombia); Rueda, Oscar A. [Universidad Nacional de Colombia, School of Geosciences and Environment, Medellin (Colombia); Grupo HTM, Medellin (Colombia)

    2011-06-15

    The hydro-climatic variability of the Colombian Andes associated with El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is reviewed using records of rainfall, river discharges, soil moisture, and a vegetation index (NDVI) as a surrogate for evapotranspiration. Anomalies in the components of the surface water balance during both phases of ENSO are quantified in terms of their sign, timing, and magnitude. During El Nino (La Nina), the region experiences negative (positive) anomalies in rainfall, river discharges (average and extremes), soil moisture, and NDVI. ENSO's effects are phase-locked to the seasonal cycle, being stronger during December-February, and weaker during March-May. Besides, rainfall and river discharges anomalies show that the ENSO signal exhibits a westerly wave-like propagation, being stronger (weaker) and earlier (later) over the western (eastern) Andes. Soil moisture anomalies are land-cover type dependant, but overall they are enhanced by ENSO, showing very low values during El Nino (mainly during dry seasons), but saturation values during La Nina. A suite of large-scale and regional mechanisms cooperating at the ocean-atmosphere-land system are reviewed to explaining the identified hydro-climatic anomalies. This review contributes to an understanding of the hydro-climatic framework of a region identified as the most critical hotspot for biodiversity on Earth, and constitutes a wake-up call for scientists and policy-makers alike, to take actions and mobilize resources and minds to prevent the further destruction of the region's valuable hydrologic and biodiversity resources and ecosystems. It also sheds lights towards the implementation of strategies and adaptation plans to coping with threats from global environmental change. (orig.)

  16. Two new species of Nitocrella (Crustacea, Copepoda, Harpacticoida from groundwaters of northwestern Australia expand the geographic range of the genus in a global hotspot of subterranean biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danny Tang

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available In Australia, the Ameiridae is the most diverse harpacticoid family in groundwater, with 35 species hitherto reported. In this study, we describe two new species belonging to the “vasconica”-group of the ameirid genus Nitocrella based on specimens collected from groundwaters near mine sites in the Pilbara and Great Sandy Desert regions of northwestern Australia. Nitocrella knotti sp. n. can be distinguished from related taxa by having two setae on the antennal exopod, four armature elements on the distal endopodal segment of leg 2, four armature elements on the distal endopodal segment of leg 3, three armature elements on the distal endopodal segment of leg 4, and three setae on the basoendopodal lobe of leg 5. Nitocrella karanovici sp. n. differs from its congeners by having a short outer spine and long inner seta on the distal endopodal segment of leg 2, three armature elements on the distal endopodal segment of leg 3, and four setae on the basoendopodal lobe of leg 5 in the female. This study is of biogeographic interest in providing the first documentation of the genus Nitocrella from the Pilbara and Great Sandy Desert regions. Both new species of Nitocrella are recorded from restricted localities and appear to be short-range endemics, thus making them potentially vulnerable to environmental changes and threatening processes such as mining. The distribution range of N. karanovici sp. n. coincides with the centre of diversity of the Ethel Gorge aquifer stygobiont community, a globally significant hotspot which is listed as endangered.

  17. Assessing the Ecological and Socio-Economic Impacts of Extensive Small Hydropower Development in the Western Ghats of Karnataka, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jumani, S.

    2016-12-01

    The growth of small hydro-power projects (SHPs) is being widely encouraged as they are believed to be environmentally sustainable and socially equitable sources of energy. Easy policies, carbon credits and government sponsored monetary incentives have led to the mushrooming of SHPs along most tropical rivers, especially in developing countries. Our field study conducted between December, 2013 and September, 2014 assessed the social and ecological impacts of a cluster of SHPs in the biodiversity hotspot of the Western Ghats in India. Ecological impacts were studied with respect to freshwater fish assemblages, river water parameters, forest fragmentation and spread of invasive species. Social surveys were conducted to understand impacts on SHPs on socio-economic activities, resource access and human-animal conflict. Ecological impacts were found to be substantial. Freshwater fish species richness was significantly higher in un-dammed sites, and this variation in richness was explained by dam-related variables. Within dammed streams, spatial sections that were particularly damaging were identified. Fish species and guilds that were particularly susceptible to be adversely impacted were identified as indicator species. Four SHPs having a cumulative capacity of 45MW led to a direct loss of 14.5ha of forest land. Resultant loss in canopy cover and spread of invasive plant species was quantified. More than 10% of the river stretch was left de-watered due to the dams. Socially, SHPs were not as beneficial as they are believed to be. Respondents claimed that human-elephant conflict began only after SHP construction began. This relationship was examined with secondary data, and found to be true. In light of our findings, we suggest that the policy regarding SHPs be revised. Given that 6474 sites have been identified for SHP development in India, all without any individual or cumulative impact assessments or public consultations, studies to understand their impacts at the

  18. Biodiversity of roadside plants and their response to air pollution in an Indo-Burma hotspot region: implications for urban ecosystem restoration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prabhat Kumar Rai

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In recent Anthropocene, biodiversity of urban roadside plants is now increasingly being realized as an eco-sustainable tool for monitoring and mitigation of air pollution. The present study aimed to investigate the impact of particulate matter (PM pollutants on leaf morphology (stomata, biochemical (heavy metals, protein, and sugars parameters and enzyme activity (peroxidase and catalase of 12 common roadside plant species, growing at two different sites of Aizawl City, i.e. the Ramrikawn (RKN-Med; polluted peri-urban site and the Mizoram University (MZU-Low; less polluted rural site. The highest dust deposition was noted for the RKN-Med site on Ficus benghalensis and the lowest in Bauhinia variegate. The plant species growing at the RKN-Med site showed significant decreases in stomatal size and stomatal index (p ˂ 0.05. Further, increased concentration of heavy metals (Fe, Cu, and Zn was recorded at the RKN-Med site. Moreover, tolerant roadside plants find their suitability for plantation in ecologically sensitive regions, having implications for urban ecosystem restoration.

  19. Producing diversity: Agroforests Sustain Avian Richness and Abundance in India's Western Ghats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krithi K Karanth

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Globally, protected areas have long been the corner stone of biodiversity conservation efforts. In India’s Western Ghats, small and isolated protected areas are embedded in a matrix of multiple land-uses, most of which include agroforests. These agroforests are being increasingly recognized for their supplementary role in conserving wildlife. We examined bird species richness and densities in areca (Areca catechu, coffee (Coffea arabica and Coffea canephora and rubber (Hevea brasiliensis agroforests in the Western Ghats. We developed a priori hypotheses, predicting that bird species richness and guild density would be highest in coffee, followed by areca and rubber agroforests. We carried out 551 point-count surveys involving 386 hours of sampling in 187 agroforests across a 29,634 km2 area of the Ghats. We observed 204 bird species, of which 170 were residents. The average estimated richness per agroforest was higher in coffee (60.5 compared to rubber (45.4 and areca (34.1. We modeled species richness as a function of relevant biogeographic and environmental covariates. The most influential factors were tree cover, tree density and rainfall in all agroforests, but the strength of these effects varied. Coffee supported higher densities in all four habitat and three feeding guilds compared to areca and rubber. We integrated extensive field sampling with modeling that accounted for imperfect detection, while assessing bird richness and densities across multiple agroforest types. We establish that coffee agroforests are substantially richer in birds than rubber and areca, but all three agroforests play an important role in providing subsidiary habitats for birds in the Ghats. Policy decisions and markets must incorporate such biodiversity values and services provided by these agroforests to sustain and facilitate long-term biodiversity conservation.

  20. Old Lineage on an Old Island: Pixibinthus, a New Cricket Genus Endemic to New Caledonia Shed Light on Gryllid Diversification in a Hotspot of Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anso, Jérémy; Barrabé, Laure; Desutter-Grandcolas, Laure; Jourdan, Hervé; Grandcolas, Philippe; Dong, Jiajia; Robillard, Tony

    2016-01-01

    Few studies have focused on the early colonization of New Caledonia by insects, after the re-emergence of the main island, 37 Myr ago. Here we investigate the mode and tempo of evolution of a new endemic cricket genus, Pixibinthus, recently discovered in southern New Caledonia. First we formally describe this new monotypic genus found exclusively in the open shrubby vegetation on metalliferous soils, named ‘maquis minier’, unique to New Caledonia. We then reconstruct a dated molecular phylogeny based on five mitochondrial and four nuclear loci in order to establish relationships of Pixibinthus within Eneopterinae crickets. Pixibinthus is recovered as thesister clade of the endemic genus Agnotecous, mostly rainforest-dwellers. Dating results show that the island colonization by their common ancestor occurred around 34.7 Myr, shortly after New Caledonia re-emergence. Pixibinthus and Agnotecous are then one of the oldest insect lineages documented so far for New Caledonia. This discovery highlights for the first time two clear-cut ecological specializations between sister clades, as Agnotecous is mainly found in rainforests with 19 species, whereas Pixibinthus is found in open habitats with a single documented species. The preference of Pixibinthus for open habitats and of Agnotecous for forest habitats nicely fits an acoustic specialization, either explained by differences in body size or in acoustic properties of their respective habitats. We hypothesize that landscape dynamics, linked to major past climatic events and recent change in fire regimes are possible causes for both present-day low diversity and rarity in genus Pixibinthus. The unique evolutionary history of this old New Caledonian lineage stresses the importance to increase our knowledge on the faunal biodiversity of ‘maquis minier’, in order to better understand the origin and past dynamics of New Caledonian biota. PMID:27027632

  1. Old Lineage on an Old Island: Pixibinthus, a New Cricket Genus Endemic to New Caledonia Shed Light on Gryllid Diversification in a Hotspot of Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anso, Jérémy; Barrabé, Laure; Desutter-Grandcolas, Laure; Jourdan, Hervé; Grandcolas, Philippe; Dong, Jiajia; Robillard, Tony

    2016-01-01

    Few studies have focused on the early colonization of New Caledonia by insects, after the re-emergence of the main island, 37 Myr ago. Here we investigate the mode and tempo of evolution of a new endemic cricket genus, Pixibinthus, recently discovered in southern New Caledonia. First we formally describe this new monotypic genus found exclusively in the open shrubby vegetation on metalliferous soils, named 'maquis minier', unique to New Caledonia. We then reconstruct a dated molecular phylogeny based on five mitochondrial and four nuclear loci in order to establish relationships of Pixibinthus within Eneopterinae crickets. Pixibinthus is recovered as the sister clade of the endemic genus Agnotecous, mostly rainforest-dwellers. Dating results show that the island colonization by their common ancestor occurred around 34.7 Myr, shortly after New Caledonia re-emergence. Pixibinthus and Agnotecous are then one of the oldest insect lineages documented so far for New Caledonia. This discovery highlights for the first time two clear-cut ecological specializations between sister clades, as Agnotecous is mainly found in rainforests with 19 species, whereas Pixibinthus is found in open habitats with a single documented species. The preference of Pixibinthus for open habitats and of Agnotecous for forest habitats nicely fits an acoustic specialization, either explained by differences in body size or in acoustic properties of their respective habitats. We hypothesize that landscape dynamics, linked to major past climatic events and recent change in fire regimes are possible causes for both present-day low diversity and rarity in genus Pixibinthus. The unique evolutionary history of this old New Caledonian lineage stresses the importance to increase our knowledge on the faunal biodiversity of 'maquis minier', in order to better understand the origin and past dynamics of New Caledonian biota.

  2. Salient Ecological Sensitive Regions of Central Western Ghats, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandra, T. V.; Bharath, Setturu; Subash Chandran, M. D.; Joshi, N. V.

    2018-02-01

    Ecologically sensitive regions (ESRs) are the `ecological units' with the exceptional biotic and abiotic elements. Identification of ESRs considering spatially both ecological and social dimensions of environmental variables helps in ecological and conservation planning as per Biodiversity Act, 2002, Government of India. The current research attempts to integrate ecological and environmental considerations into administration, and prioritizes regions at Panchayat levels (local administrative unit) in Uttara Kannada district, Central Western Ghats, Karnataka state considering attributes (biological, Geo-climatic, Social, etc.) as ESR (1-4) through weightage score metrics. The region has the distinction of having highest forest area (80.48%) in Karnataka State, India and has been undergoing severe anthropogenic pressures impacting biogeochemistry, hydrology, food security, climate and socio-economic systems. Prioritisation of ESRs helps in the implementation of the sustainable developmental framework with the appropriate conservation strategies through the involvement of local stakeholders.

  3. Geospatial assessment and monitoring of historical forest cover changes (1920-2012) in Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satish, K V; Saranya, K R L; Reddy, C Sudhakar; Krishna, P Hari; Jha, C S; Rao, P V V Prasada

    2014-12-01

    Deforestation in the biosphere reserves, which are key Protected Areas has negative impacts on biodiversity, climate, carbon fluxes and livelihoods. Comprehensive study of deforestation in biosphere reserves is required to assess the impact of the management effectiveness. This article assesses the changes in forest cover in various zones and protected areas of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, the first declared biosphere reserve in India which forms part of Western Ghats-a global biodiversity hotspot. In this study, we have mapped the forests from earliest available topographical maps and multi-temporal satellite data spanning from 1920's to 2012 period. Mapping of spatial extent of forest cover, vegetation types and land cover was carried out using visual interpretation technique. A grid cell of 1 km × 1 km was generated for time series change analysis to understand the patterns in spatial distribution of forest cover (1920-1973-1989-1999-2006-2012). The total forest area of biosphere reserve was found to be 5,806.5 km(2) (93.8 % of total geographical area) in 1920. Overall loss of forest cover was estimated as 1,423.6 km(2) (24.5 % of the total forest) with reference to 1920. Among the six Protected Areas, annual deforestation rate of >0.5 was found in Wayanad wildlife sanctuary during 1920-1973. The deforestation in Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve is mainly attributed to conversion of forests to plantations and agriculture along with submergence due to construction of dams during 1920 to 1989. Grid wise analysis indicates that 851 grids have undergone large-scale negative changes of >75 ha of forest loss during 1920-1973 while, only 15 grids have shown >75 ha loss during 1973-1989. Annual net rate of deforestation for the period of 1920 to 1973 was calculated as 0.5 followed by 0.1 for 1973 to 1989. Our analysis shows that there was large-scale deforestation before the declaration of area as biosphere reserve in 1986; however, the deforestation has drastically

  4. Multi-functional landscapes in semi arid environments: implications for biodiversity and ecosystem services

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    O'Farrell, PJ

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Synergies between biodiversity conservation objectives and ecosystem service management were investigated in the Succulent Karoo biome (83,000 km2) of South Africa, a recognised biodiversity hotspot. Our study complemented a previous biodiversity...

  5. Hotspot advance speed - hotspot size/core-hotspot distance relation ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Simple kinematic consideration enabled us to obtain an expression to constrain the advance speed of hotspots. In general, the average projected hotspot advance speed estimated for our sample ranges from 0.13 ≤ 〈β〉 ≤ 0.40. Keywords: Galaxies – General; Galaxies – Active; Methods – Analytical; Methods Data Analysis ...

  6. Stand structure of a primate rich rainforest region in the central Western Ghats of southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Roy

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Western Ghats of southern India are one of the most important biodiversity regions in the world, not only due to their faunal diversity and abundance but also due to different habitat types, floral diversity and the presence of several endemic plant species. The rainforests in the central Western Ghats are inhabited by several primate species. We investigated the vegetation pattern and tree species occupancy of one of the prime primate habitats in the central Western Ghats. Lion-tailed Macaque (Macaca silenus, Bonnet Macaque (Macaca radiata, Hanuman Langur (Semnopithecus entellus achates and Malabar Slender Loris (Loris lydekkerianus malabaricus inhabit the study area. We studied the density, dominance, frequency and Importance Value Index (IVI of different tree species, using the belt transect method on randomly selected plots covering 4.1ha. We found that all the plant species that emerged to be the most dominant species with high IVI in the forest were also used by the diurnal primates for foraging. Knema attenuata and Syzygium gardneri were found to be the ‘keystone’ species. Since the forests of the study area do not come under the ‘protected area network’ for wildlife, the data obtained during this study will be helpful in the forestry management practices with a view for wildlife conservation of the region.

  7. Topographic and Bioclimatic Determinants of the Occurrence of Forest and Grassland in Tropical Montane Forest-Grassland Mosaics of the Western Ghats, India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arundhati Das

    Full Text Available The objective of this analysis was to identify topographic and bioclimatic factors that predict occurrence of forest and grassland patches within tropical montane forest-grassland mosaics. We further investigated whether interactions between topography and bioclimate are important in determining vegetation pattern, and assessed the role of spatial scale in determining the relative importance of specific topographic features. Finally, we assessed the role of elevation in determining the relative importance of diverse explanatory factors. The study area consists of the central and southern regions of the Western Ghats of Southern India, a global biodiversity hotspot. Random forests were used to assess prediction accuracy and predictor importance. Conditional inference classification trees were used to interpret predictor effects and examine potential interactions between predictors. GLMs were used to confirm predictor importance and assess the strength of interaction terms. Overall, topographic and bioclimatic predictors classified vegetation pattern with approximately 70% accuracy. Prediction accuracy was higher for grassland than forest, and for mosaics at higher elevations. Elevation was the most important predictor, with mosaics above 2000 m dominated largely by grassland. Relative topographic position measured at a local scale (within a 300 m neighbourhood was another important predictor of vegetation pattern. In high elevation mosaics, northness and concave land surface curvature were important predictors of forest occurrence. Important bioclimatic predictors were: dry quarter precipitation, annual temperature range and the interaction between the two. The results indicate complex interactions between topography and bioclimate and among topographic variables. Elevation and topography have a strong influence on vegetation pattern in these mosaics. There were marked regional differences in the roles of various topographic and bioclimatic

  8. 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.

  9. The mother-child nexus. Knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz García, Gisella Susana

    2006-09-12

    This study focuses on the mother-child nexus (or process of enculturation) with respect to knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in a context where accelerated processes of modernization and acculturation are leading to the erosion of knowledge and cultural values associated with wild food plant use, in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India. Wild food plants in this biodiversity hotspot form an important part of local diets and are used as famine foods and medicines. In general, the collection and consumption of these foods are increasingly stigmatized as symbols of poverty and 'tribalness' (equivalent to 'backwardness'). The study, which falls within the discipline of ethnobotany, involves three socio-cultural groups--the Paniya and Kuruma tribes and non-tribals. Further, it examines the impact in the enculturation process of an unusual educational programme sponsored by the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation that is oriented towards creating awareness among children of cultural identity and local biological resources--the study compares children having participated in the programme with those who have not, with their mothers. The process of enculturation is assessed by comparing wild food plant knowledge and values between mothers and their children, and by examining events where knowledge transmission occurs, including collection and consumption. For that, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis tools were used, and methods included semi-structured interviews, photo identification and informal interviews of key informants. Results ratify that women are the knowledge holders and are the primary means of knowledge transmission to their children. Nevertheless, fewer children are collecting wild food plants with mothers and learning about them, apparently because of children's lack of time. On the other hand, older people acknowledge that a "change in taste" is occurring among younger generations. In general, there is a simultaneous transmission from

  10. The mother – child nexus. Knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cruz García Gisella

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This study focuses on the mother-child nexus (or process of enculturation with respect to knowledge and valuation of wild food plants in a context where accelerated processes of modernization and acculturation are leading to the erosion of knowledge and cultural values associated with wild food plant use, in Wayanad, Western Ghats, India. Wild food plants in this biodiversity hotspot form an important part of local diets and are used as famine foods and medicines. In general, the collection and consumption of these foods are increasingly stigmatized as symbols of poverty and 'tribalness' (equivalent to 'backwardness'. The study, which falls within the discipline of ethnobotany, involves three socio-cultural groups – the Paniya and Kuruma tribes and non-tribals. Further, it examines the impact in the enculturation process of an unusual educational programme sponsored by the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation that is oriented towards creating awareness among children of cultural identity and local biological resources – the study compares children having participated in the programme with those who have not, with their mothers. The process of enculturation is assessed by comparing wild food plant knowledge and values between mothers and their children, and by examining events where knowledge transmission occurs, including collection and consumption. For that, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis tools were used, and methods included semi-structured interviews, photo identification and informal interviews of key informants. Results ratify that women are the knowledge holders and are the primary means of knowledge transmission to their children. Nevertheless, fewer children are collecting wild food plants with mothers and learning about them, apparently because of children's lack of time. On the other hand, older people acknowledge that a "change in taste" is occurring among younger generations. In general, there is

  11. Headwater biodiversity among different levels of stream habitat hierarchy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Göthe, Emma; Friberg, Nikolai; Kahlert, Maria

    2014-01-01

    With the current loss of biodiversity and threats to freshwater ecosystems, it is crucial to identify hot-spots of biodiversity and on which spatial scale they can be resolved. Conservation and management of these important ecosystems needs insight into whether most of the regional biodiversity (i...

  12. Hotspots Definition Study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Pater, F.; Brinkman, S.; Schellekens, E.

    2010-03-01

    In the Dutch research programme Climate changes Spatial Planning (CcSP) many scientific projects are carried out. They often take a multidisciplinary approach to the climate issue. However, more attention needed to be given to embedding the programme into practice. Therefore, the board decided to start a hotspot programme. A hotspot was defined as a pilot project in a sector, place or region in which spatial planning and climate change play an important role in the physical shape and land use of the area and where conflicts of interest are found between these and other factors. The hotspot programme started with a definition study. This report is the result of this study. The goal of the study was to identify, describe and evaluate possible hotspots. In two workshops with policy-makers from national and regional governments, consultancy firms and nature conservation organizations, a large number of potential hotspots were identified. Fifteen were selected after the workshops took place and described in detail. The selection was done using a set of conditional criteria, criteria that all had to be met. Two potential hotspots were withdrawn after the selection. Since the Board of the CcSP programme expressed its interest in financing six to seven hotspots, a prioritization was made, using prioritizing criteria. Also the potential hotspots were assessed looking at regional distribution, thematic coverage and target groups. After this assessment and an analysis of the hotspots taking some other factors into account (eg. some hotspots were very similar or one could easily be incorporated in another one) five hotspots were selected: Kampen, Biesbosch-Haringvliet, Zuidplaspolder, Delta Waters and Tilburg. Options to fill the last two places were: Grounds for Change, Noordoostpolder, Oude Vaart Valley and Arnhem/Nijmegen (KAN). For these remaining potential hotspots draft terms of reference were drawn as basis for a project proposals. These terms of reference are added to

  13. Modelling Hotspots for Invasive Alien Plants in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adhikari, Dibyendu; Tiwary, Raghuvar; Barik, Saroj Kanta

    2015-01-01

    Identification of invasion hotspots that support multiple invasive alien species (IAS) is a pre-requisite for control and management of invasion. However, till recently it remained a methodological challenge to precisely determine such invasive hotspots. We identified the hotspots of alien species invasion in India through Ecological Niche Modelling (ENM) using species occurrence data from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF). The predicted area of invasion for selected species were classified into 4 categories based on number of model agreements for a region i.e. high, medium, low and very low. About 49% of the total geographical area of India was predicted to be prone to invasion at moderate to high levels of climatic suitability. The intersection of anthropogenic biomes and ecoregions with the regions of 'high' climatic suitability was classified as hotspot of alien plant invasion. Nineteen of 47 ecoregions of India, harboured such hotspots. Most ecologically sensitive regions of India, including the 'biodiversity hotspots' and coastal regions coincide with invasion hotspots, indicating their vulnerability to alien plant invasion. Besides demonstrating the usefulness of ENM and open source data for IAS management, the present study provides a knowledge base for guiding the formulation of an effective policy and management strategy for controlling the invasive alien species.

  14. Critical Analysis of Forest Degradation in the Southern Eastern Ghats of India: Comparison of Satellite Imagery and Soil Quality Index.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Andimuthu; Radhapriya, Parthasarathy; Jayakumar, Shanmuganathan; Dhanya, Praveen; Geetha, Rajadurai

    2016-01-01

    India has one of the largest assemblages of tropical biodiversity, with its unique floristic composition of endemic species. However, current forest cover assessment is performed via satellite-based forest surveys, which have many limitations. The present study, which was performed in the Eastern Ghats, analysed the satellite-based inventory provided by forest surveys and inferred from the results that this process no longer provides adequate information for quantifying forest degradation in an empirical manner. The study analysed 21 soil properties and generated a forest soil quality index of the Eastern Ghats, using principal component analysis. Using matrix modules and geospatial technology, we compared the forest degradation status calculated from satellite-based forest surveys with the degradation status calculated from the forest soil quality index. The Forest Survey of India classified about 1.8% of the Eastern Ghats' total area as degraded forests and the remainder (98.2%) as open, dense, and very dense forests, whereas the soil quality index results found that about 42.4% of the total area is degraded, with the remainder (57.6%) being non-degraded. Our ground truth verification analyses indicate that the forest soil quality index along with the forest cover density data from the Forest Survey of India are ideal tools for evaluating forest degradation.

  15. Distribution, congruence, and hotspots of higher plants in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Lina; Li, Jinya; Liu, Huiyuan; Qin, Haining

    2016-01-01

    Identifying biodiversity hotspots has become a central issue in setting up priority protection areas, especially as financial resources for biological diversity conservation are limited. Taking China’s Higher Plants Red List (CHPRL), including Bryophytes, Ferns, Gymnosperms, Angiosperms, as the data source, we analyzed the geographic patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment via data processing at a fine grid-scale with an average edge length of 30 km based on three aspects of richness information: species richness, endemic species richness, and threatened species richness. We sought to test the accuracy of hotspots used in identifying conservation priorities with regard to higher plants. Next, we tested the congruence of the three aspects and made a comparison of the similarities and differences between the hotspots described in this paper and those in previous studies. We found that over 90% of threatened species in China are concentrated. While a high spatial congruence is observed among the three measures, there is a low congruence between two different sets of hotspots. Our results suggest that biodiversity information should be considered when identifying biological hotspots. Other factors, such as scales, should be included as well to develop biodiversity conservation plans in accordance with the region’s specific conditions.

  16. Modelling landscape dynamics with LST in protected areas of Western Ghats, Karnataka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandra, T V; Bharath, Setturu; Gupta, Nimish

    2018-01-15

    Forest ecosystems sustain biota on the earth as they are habitat to diverse biotic species, arrests soil erosion, play a crucial role in water cycle, sequester carbon, and helps in mitigating the impacts of global warming. Large scale land use land cover (LULC) change leading to deforestation is one of the drivers of global climate changes and alteration of biogeochemical cycles with significant consequences in ecosystem services and biodiversity. This has necessitated the investigation of LULC by mapping, monitoring and modelling spatio-temporal patterns and evaluating these in the context of human-environment interactions. The current work investigates LULC changes with temperature dynamics of select protected areas in Western Ghats. The land use analyses reveal changes in the forest cover across Kudremukh National Park (KNP), Rajiv Gandhi Tiger Reserve (RTR), Bandipur Tiger Reserve (BTR). KNP region has lost evergreen forest cover during 1973-2016 from 33.46 to 27.22%, while BTR lost deciduous cover from 61.69 to 47.3% due to mining, horticulture plantations, human habitations, etc. The LST increase has impacted regeneration of species with the induced water stress, etc. CA-Markov modelling was used for forecasting the likely land uses in 2026 and validation was done through Kappa indices. Results highlight decline of evergreen cover in KNP (9%) and deciduous cover in RTR (2%) followed by BTR (3%) with further expansion of plantations, which will impact biodiversity, hydrology and ecology. Insights of LULC dynamics help natural resource managers in evolving appropriate strategies to ensure conservation of threatened biota in Western Ghats. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Reproductive biology of Puntius denisonii, an endemic and threatened aquarium fish of the Western Ghats and its implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Solomon

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available This study presents fundamental information on the reproductive biology of Puntius denisonii, an endemic and threatened aquarium fish of the Western Ghats Hotspot. Results are based on the observations from three river systems, Chandragiri, Valapattannam and Chaliyar. Maximum observed total length in P. denisonii was 162mm and 132mm for males and females, respectively. Males attained sexual maturity at a lower size than females with mean size at first maturity determined as 85.33 plus or minus 1.52 mm for males and 95.66 plus or minus 1.15 mm for females. Puntius denisonii spawned from October to March with minor differences in the peak breeding months between the three river systems, which were studied. Sex ratio deviated significantly from 1:1 and was skewed in favour of males. Absolute fecundity varied from 376 (fish of 102mm total length to 1098 (fish of 106mm total length eggs. Currently, the closed seasons for P. denisonii have been put in place during June, July and October based on the (misassumption that the species breeds during these three months. However, the results of the present study have helped us to understand more about the reproductive biology of the species so as to recommend more appropriate seasonal closures. The months from October until March need to be designated as a closed season for protecting the breeding population of P. denisonii.

  18. Observed climate change hotspots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turco, M.; Palazzi, E.; Hardenberg, J.; Provenzale, A.

    2015-05-01

    We quantify climate change hotspots from observations, taking into account the differences in precipitation and temperature statistics (mean, variability, and extremes) between 1981-2010 and 1951-1980. Areas in the Amazon, the Sahel, tropical West Africa, Indonesia, and central eastern Asia emerge as primary observed hotspots. The main contributing factors are the global increase in mean temperatures, the intensification of extreme hot-season occurrence in low-latitude regions and the decrease of precipitation over central Africa. Temperature and precipitation variability have been substantially stable over the past decades, with only a few areas showing significant changes against the background climate variability. The regions identified from the observations are remarkably similar to those defined from projections of global climate models under a "business-as-usual" scenario, indicating that climate change hotspots are robust and persistent over time. These results provide a useful background to develop global policy decisions on adaptation and mitigation priorities over near-time horizons.

  19. Defining persistent hotspots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kittur, Nupur; Binder, Sue; Campbell, Carl H.

    2017-01-01

    , investigators and neglected tropical disease (NTD) program managers need to define them based on changes in prevalence and/or intensity. But how should the data be analyzed to define a persistent hotspot? We have analyzed a dataset from an operational research study in western Tanzania after three annual MDAs...... and contrast the outcomes of these analyses. Our intent is to showhowthe samedataset yields different numbers of persistent hotspots depending on the approach used to define them. We suggest that investigators and NTD program managers use the approach most suited for their study or program, but whichever...... using four different approaches to define persistent hotspots. The four approaches are 1) absolute percent change in prevalence; 2) percent change in prevalence; 3) change in World Health Organization guideline categories; 4) change (absolute or percent) in both prevalence and intensity. We compare...

  20. Hotspot swells revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Scott D.; Adam, Claudia

    2014-10-01

    The first attempts to quantify the width and height of hotspot swells were made more than 30 years ago. Since that time, topography, ocean-floor age, and sediment thickness datasets have improved considerably. Swell heights and widths have been used to estimate the heat flow from the core-mantle boundary, constrain numerical models of plumes, and as an indicator of the origin of hotspots. In this paper, we repeat the analysis of swell geometry and buoyancy flux for 54 hotspots, including the 37 considered by Sleep (1990) and the 49 considered by Courtillot et al. (2003), using the latest and most accurate data. We are able to calculate swell geometry for a number of hotspots that Sleep was only able to estimate by comparison with other swells. We find that in spite of the increased resolution in global bathymetry models there is significant uncertainty in our calculation of buoyancy fluxes due to differences in our measurement of the swells’ width and height, the integration method (volume integration or cross-sectional area), and the variations of the plate velocities between HS2-Nuvel1a (Gripp and Gordon, 1990) and HS3-Nuvel1a (Gripp and Gordon, 2002). We also note that the buoyancy flux for Pacific hotspots is in general larger than for Eurasian, North American, African and Antarctic hotspots. Considering that buoyancy flux is linearly related to plate velocity, we speculate that either the calculation of buoyancy flux using plate velocity over-estimates the actual vertical flow of material from the deep mantle or that convection in the Pacific hemisphere is more vigorous than the Atlantic hemisphere.

  1. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Birds of lower Palni Hills, Western Ghats, Tamil Nadu

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Ramesh

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The current altitudinal distribution and breeding observations on birds of lower Palni Hills, Western Ghats were documented by conducting road transects, opportunistic surveys including trail walks and mist netting. A total of 196 species belonging to 63 families were recorded during the study. The Accipitridae family was foremost in species richness, followed by Cuculidae and Muscicapidae, Picidae, Timaliidae and other families. Altitudinal distribution of birds was higher between 600 and 900 m. The general patterns of the decreasing species richness with increasing altitude were observed in mid and upper Palnis. This could be probably because the lower Palnis have more deciduous and scrub forest which can support high food availability. Resident and migrant species made up to 87.76% and 12.24% of the community, respectively. We recorded a species that was threatened, three nearly threatened, and five endemic to the Western Ghats. Most of the endemics were confined to the higher altitudes due to the presence of moist evergreen and high altitude montane forests and grasslands. In total, 51 breeding bird observations were recorded. Interestingly, the variation in the breeding season of some birds was noticed with respect to earlier studies. Overall, our study illustrated useful information on bird community in this region which serves as a baseline for future monitoring programs.

  2. Using ecological niche modeling to determine avian richness hotspots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Mirzaei

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding distributions of wildlife species is a key step towards identifying biodiversity hotspots and designing effective conservation strategies. In this paper, the spatial pattern of diversity of birds in Golestan Province, Iran was estimated. Ecological niche modeling was used to determine distributions of 144 bird species across the province using a maximum entropy algorithm. Richness maps across all birds, and separately for rare and threatened species, were prepared as approximations to hotspots. Results showed close similarity between hotspots for all birds and those for rare birds; hotspots were concentrated in the southern and especially the southwestern parts of the province. Hotspots for threatened birds tended more to the central and especially the western parts of the province, which include coastal habitats. Based on three criteria, it is clear that the western part is the most important area of the province in terms of bird Faunas. Despite some shortcomings, hotspot analysis for birds could be applied to guide conservation efforts and provide useful tool towards efficient conservation action.

  3. Talipot: A Forgotten Palm of the Western Ghats

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 1; Issue 11. Talipot: A Forgotten Palm of the Western Ghats A Plea for its Conservation. M D Subash Chandran ... Author Affiliations. M D Subash Chandran1. Department of Botany Dr Baliga College of Arts and Science Kumta 581 343, Karnataka, India ...

  4. Patterns of species discovery in the Western Ghats, a megadiversity ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PRAKASH KUMAR

    Ghats (Flora of Coorg, Flora of Hassan District, Flora of. Udupi, Flora of Tamil Nadu, Flora of Maharashtra, to name a few). Analysis of species discovery curves including four plant and four animal groups indicated a mixed set of patterns. For the charismatic animal species—birds and butterflies—the discovery curve was ...

  5. Antimicrobial activity of some actinomycetes from Western Ghats of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Aim: The aim was to find some actinomycetes with antimicrobial metabolites. Methods: Soil samples were collected from Nilgiris district in Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu, India. Actinomycetes were isolated using serial dilution and plating techniques on actinomycetes isolation agar. Streptomycin and ketoconazole (25 lg/disc) ...

  6. Patchy charnockites from Jenapore, Eastern Ghats granulite belt, India

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    R. Narasimhan (Krishtel eMaging) 1461 1996 Oct 15 13:05:22

    tor of the Eastern Ghats granulite belt, are disposed in a linear fashion and generally have sharp lithological contact with the host leptynite. Sometimes the patches and foliations of the host .... In over- all appearance it looks like a magmatic folia- tion. 3.2 Patchy charnockite. Patchy charnockites of the present area are mainly.

  7. Patterns of species discovery in the Western Ghats, a megadiversity ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PRAKASH KUMAR

    We discuss the trajectories of discovery with respect to rarity or endemicity of the species and life history features, and the ... [Aravind N A, Tambat B, Ravikanth G, Ganeshaiah K N and Uma Shaanker R 2007 Patterns of species discovery in the Western Ghats, a ... charismatic taxa (Tangley 1984; http://biology.usgs.gov/.

  8. Mafic dykes at the southwestern margin of Eastern Ghats belt ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    west of the Ongole domain of the Eastern Ghats granulite belt. Vijay Kumar and Leelanandam ... machine was 20/40 KV and nominal analysis time was 300 seconds for all major oxides. For the XRF analysis the overall .... can be seen, while P2O5 and TiO2 increase with decreasing MgO. Increasing CaO and decreasing.

  9. Are hotspots of evolutionary potential adequately protected in southern California?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandergast, A.G.; Bohonak, A.J.; Hathaway, S.A.; Boys, J.; Fisher, R.N.

    2008-01-01

    Reserves are often designed to protect rare habitats, or "typical" exemplars of ecoregions and geomorphic provinces. This approach focuses on current patterns of organismal and ecosystem-level biodiversity, but typically ignores the evolutionary processes that control the gain and loss of biodiversity at these and other levels (e.g., genetic, ecological). In order to include evolutionary processes in conservation planning efforts, their spatial components must first be identified and mapped. We describe a GIS-based approach for explicitly mapping patterns of genetic divergence and diversity for multiple species (a "multi-species genetic landscape"). Using this approach, we analyzed mitochondrial DNA datasets from 21 vertebrate and invertebrate species in southern California to identify areas with common phylogeographic breaks and high intrapopulation diversity. The result is an evolutionary framework for southern California within which patterns of genetic diversity can be analyzed in the context of historical processes, future evolutionary potential and current reserve design. Our multi-species genetic landscapes pinpoint six hotspots where interpopulation genetic divergence is consistently high, five evolutionary hotspots within which genetic connectivity is high, and three hotspots where intrapopulation genetic diversity is high. These 14 hotspots can be grouped into eight geographic areas, of which five largely are unprotected at this time. The multi-species genetic landscape approach may provide an avenue to readily incorporate measures of evolutionary process into GIS-based systematic conservation assessment and land-use planning.

  10. Teaching Biodiversity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Author Affiliations. Madhav Gadgil1 2. Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India. Biodiversity Unit, Jowaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur P.O. Jakkur, Bangalore 560064, India ...

  11. Headwater biodiversity among different levels of stream habitat hierarchy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Göthe, Emma; Friberg, Nikolai; Kahlert, Maria

    2014-01-01

    With the current loss of biodiversity and threats to freshwater ecosystems, it is crucial to identify hot-spots of biodiversity and on which spatial scale they can be resolved. Conservation and management of these important ecosystems needs insight into whether most of the regional biodiversity (i.......e. y-diversity) can be found locally (i.e. high a-diversity) or whether it is distributed across the region (i.e. high b-diversity). Biodiversity patterns of benthic macroinvertebrates and diatoms were studied in 30 headwater streams in five Swedish catchments by comparing the relative contribution...

  12. Phylogeographic evidence for two mesic refugia in a biodiversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nistelberger, H; Gibson, N; Macdonald, B; Tapper, S-L; Byrne, M

    2014-01-01

    Phylogeographic studies of flora in species-rich south-western Australia point to complex evolutionary histories, reflecting patterns of persistence and resilience to climatic changes during the Pleistocene. We asked whether coastal areas of the mid-west and south, as well as granite outcrops and inland ranges, have acted as major refugia within this region during Pleistocene climatic fluctuations by analysing phylogeographic patterns in the shrub Calothamnus quadrifidus R.Br. (Myrtaceae). We determined variation in chloroplast DNA data for 41 populations across the geographic range. Relationships and major clades were resolved using parsimony and Bayesian analyses. We tested for demographic and spatial expansion of the major clades and estimated clade divergence dates using an uncorrelated, lognormal relaxed clock based on two conservative chloroplast mutation rates. Two distinct phylogeographic clades were identified showing divergence during the Pleistocene, consistent with other phylogeographic studies of south-west Australian flora, emphasising the impact of climatic oscillations in driving divergence in this landscape. The southern clade was more diverse, having higher haplotype diversity and greater genetic structure, while the northern clade showed evidence of fluctuation in population size. Regions of high haplotype diversity with adjacent areas of low diversity observed in each clade indicated the locations of two coastal refugia: one on the south coast and another along the mid-west coast. This is the first evidence for major Pleistocene refugia using chloroplast genetic data in a common, widespread species from this region. PMID:24984607

  13. Reducing malnutrition in India's agri-biodiversity hotspots

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The challenge. Many of India's poor live in rural areas that are heavily dependent on agriculture. Local crops have a rich heritage of genetic diversity, but this diversity is often threatened by government policies that promote rice and wheat cultivation. This results in a disconnect between the high potential of the agricultural ...

  14. Biodiversity Hotspots and Visitor Flows in Oulanka National Park, Finland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lyon, K.; Cottrell, S.P.; Siikamaki, P.; Marwijk, van R.B.M.

    2011-01-01

    Oulanka National Park, Finland aims to ensure nature conservation while providing high quality visitor experiences. The growth of outdoor recreation and nature tourism, however, has fueled concern about consequent pressures on the natural resources of the park. This analysis assessed the spatial

  15. Mosquito diversity in Keeriparai and Mundanthurai hill ranges of the Western Ghats, southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Munirathinam

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available After a gap of 25 years the Centre for Research in Medical Entomology (CRME surveyed the mosquito biodiversity in the tail-end hill ranges of the Western Ghats, viz., Kanyakumari (Keeriparai and Tirunelveli districts (Kalakkad-Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve (KMTR and Courtallam of Tamil Nadu between July 2010 and June 2013.  The altitude of the hills ranged from 100–950 m covered by evergreen forests.  A major emphasis was given to collect the immature stages of mosquitoes, from various breeding habitats, viz., slow flowing streams, spring pool, rocky pool, leaf axils, latex cup, tree hole, bamboo stumps, etc.  Altogether 4602 immature individuals were collected, reared individually to be identified at the adult stage.  A total of 3583 specimens belonging to 50 species classified under 21 genera and 18 subgenera were recorded.  The major vector species found in these hill ranges were Stegomyia aegypti, S. albopicta (Dengue and Chikungunya, Culex bitaeniorhynchus, C. tritaeniorhynchus (Japanese encephalitis, Downsiomyia nivea (diurnally subperiodic filariasis and Anopheles mirans (Simian malaria vectors were recorded. 

  16. Antiaris toxic aria (Moraceae - a new distribution record to the Eastern Ghats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Ravikumar

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Antiaris toxicaria (Pers. Lesch. (Moraceae - a paleotropical species has so far been reported only from the Western Ghats and Andaman islands in India. The present collections from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh form a new report to the entire Eastern Ghats. Provided here are the latest nomenclature, brief description and some notes on its distribution.

  17. Cyathea nilgirensis Holttum (Cyatheaceae: Pteridophyta: a threatened tree fern from central Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S.N. Dudani

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available While studying some of the exclusive and threatened swamps overgrown with wild nutmeg trees (Myristica swamps, in the Kathalekan forest of Uttara Kannada in central Western Ghats, Cyathea nilgirensis Holttum, a southern Indian endemic tree fern was seen growing in the deep shade of the swampy forest. This is a new report of its distribution anywhere from north of Western Ghats.

  18. Morphological and genetic evidence for multiple evolutionary distinct lineages in the endangered and commercially exploited red lined torpedo barbs endemic to the Western Ghats of India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    John, Lijo; Philip, Siby; Dahanukar, Neelesh; Anvar Ali, Palakkaparambil Hamsa; Tharian, Josin; Raghavan, Rajeev; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Red lined torpedo barbs (RLTBS) (Cyprinidae: Puntius) endemic to the Western Ghats Hotspot of India, are popular and highly priced freshwater aquarium fishes. Two decades of indiscriminate exploitation for the pet trade, restricted range, fragmented populations and continuing decline in quality of habitats has resulted in their 'Endangered' listing. Here, we tested whether the isolated RLTB populations demonstrated considerable variation qualifying to be considered as distinct conservation targets. Multivariate morphometric analysis using 24 size-adjusted characters delineated all allopatric populations. Similarly, the species-tree highlighted a phylogeny with 12 distinct RLTB lineages corresponding to each of the different riverine populations. However, coalescence-based methods using mitochondrial DNA markers identified only eight evolutionarily distinct lineages. Divergence time analysis points to recent separation of the populations, owing to the geographical isolation, more than 5 million years ago, after the lineages were split into two ancestral stocks in the Paleocene, on north and south of a major geographical gap in the Western Ghats. Our results revealing the existence of eight evolutionarily distinct RLTB lineages calls for the re-determination of conservation targets for these cryptic and endangered taxa.

  19. Morphological and genetic evidence for multiple evolutionary distinct lineages in the endangered and commercially exploited red lined torpedo barbs endemic to the Western Ghats of India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lijo John

    Full Text Available Red lined torpedo barbs (RLTBS (Cyprinidae: Puntius endemic to the Western Ghats Hotspot of India, are popular and highly priced freshwater aquarium fishes. Two decades of indiscriminate exploitation for the pet trade, restricted range, fragmented populations and continuing decline in quality of habitats has resulted in their 'Endangered' listing. Here, we tested whether the isolated RLTB populations demonstrated considerable variation qualifying to be considered as distinct conservation targets. Multivariate morphometric analysis using 24 size-adjusted characters delineated all allopatric populations. Similarly, the species-tree highlighted a phylogeny with 12 distinct RLTB lineages corresponding to each of the different riverine populations. However, coalescence-based methods using mitochondrial DNA markers identified only eight evolutionarily distinct lineages. Divergence time analysis points to recent separation of the populations, owing to the geographical isolation, more than 5 million years ago, after the lineages were split into two ancestral stocks in the Paleocene, on north and south of a major geographical gap in the Western Ghats. Our results revealing the existence of eight evolutionarily distinct RLTB lineages calls for the re-determination of conservation targets for these cryptic and endangered taxa.

  20. Teaching Biodiversity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Madhav Gadgil1 2. Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India. Biodiversity Unit, Jowaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur P.O. Jakkur, Bangalore 560064, India. Resonance – Journal of Science Education. Current Issue : Vol. 23, Issue 2 · Current Issue

  1. Mantle plumes and hotspot geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, M. G.; Becker, T. W.; Konter, J.

    2017-12-01

    Ever improving global seismic models, together with expanding databases of mantle derived hotspot lavas, herald advances that relate the geochemistry of hotspots with low seismic shear-wave velocity conduits (plumes) in the mantle. Early efforts linked hotspot geochemistry with deep mantle large low velocity provinces (LLVPs) [1]. More recently, Konter and Becker (2012) [2] observed that the proportion of the C mantle component (inferred from Sr-Nd-Pb isotopes) in hotspot lavas shows an inverse relationship with seismic S-wave velocity anomalies in the shallow mantle (200 km) beneath each hotspot. They proposed that these correlations should also be made based on 3He/4He. Thus, we compare 3He/4He versus seismic S-wave velocity anomalies at 200 km depth. We find that plume-fed hotspots with the highest maximum 3He/4He (i.e., which host more of the C component) have higher hotspot buoyancy fluxes and overlie regions of lower seismic S-wave velocity (interpreted to relate to hotter mantle temperatures) at 200 km depth than hotspots that have only low 3He/4He [3]. This result complements recent work that shows an inverse relationship between maximum 3He/4He and seismic S-wave velocity anomalies in the mantle beneath the western USA [4]. The relationship between 3He/4He, shallow mantle seismic S-wave velocity anomalies, and buoyancy flux is most easily explained by a model where hotter plumes are more buoyant and entrain more of a deep, dense high 3He/4He reservoir than cooler plumes that underlie low 3He/4He hotspots. If the high 3He/4He domain is denser than other mantle components, it will be entrained only by the hottest, most buoyant plumes [3]. Such a deep, dense reservoir is ideally suited to preserving early-formed Hadean domains sampled in modern plume-fed hotspots. An important question is whether, like 3He/4He, seismic S-wave velocity anomalies in the mantle are associated with distinct heavy radiogenic isotopic compositions. C signatures are related to hot

  2. MODIS Hotspot Validation over Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veerachai Tanpipat

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available To ensure remote sensing MODIS hotspot (also known as active fire products or hotspots quality and precision in forest fire control and management in Thailand, an increased level of confidence is needed. Accuracy assessment of MODIS hotspots utilizing field survey data validation is described. A quantitative evaluation of MODIS hotspot products has been carried out since the 2007 forest fire season. The carefully chosen hotspots were scattered throughout the country and within the protected areas of the National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries. Three areas were selected as test sites for validation guidelines. Both ground and aerial field surveys were also conducted in this study by the Forest Fire Control Division, National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conversation Department, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Thailand. High accuracy of 91.84 %, 95.60% and 97.53% for the 2007, 2008 and 2009 fire seasons were observed, resulting in increased confidence in the use of MODIS hotspots for forest fire control and management in Thailand.

  3. Values, Beliefs and Norms that Foster Chilean and German Pupils' Commitment to Protect Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menzel, Susanne; Bogeholz, Susanne

    2010-01-01

    Fostering young people's commitment to protect biodiversity is an important goal of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in both, industrial countries and designated biodiversity hotspots. However, little empirical evidence exists to describe factors that influence such commitments. Based on the Value-Belief-Norm (VBN) theory, 15 to…

  4. Relationship between aboveground biomass and multiple measures of biodiversity in subtropical forest of Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heather D. Vance-Chalcraft; Michael R. Willig; Stephen B. Cox; Ariel E. Lugo; Frederick N. Scatena

    2010-01-01

    Anthropogenic activities have accelerated the rate of global loss of biodiversity, making it more important than ever to understand the structure of biodiversity hotspots. One current focus is the relationship between species richness and aboveground biomass (AGB) in a variety of ecosystems. Nonetheless, species diversity, evenness, rarity, or dominance represent other...

  5. Biodiversity Conservation in Asia

    OpenAIRE

    Dale Squires

    2014-01-01

    Asian's remarkable economic growth brought many benefits but also fuelled threats to its ecosystems and biodiversity. Economic growth brings biodiversity threats but also conservation opportunities. Continued biodiversity loss is inevitable, but the types, areas and rates of biodiversity loss are not. Prioritising biodiversity conservation, tempered by what is tractable, remains a high priority. Policy and market distortions and failures significantly underprice biodiversity, undermine ecosys...

  6. Predicting climate change impacts on the distribution of the threatened Garcinia indica in the Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malay Pramanik

    Full Text Available In recent years, climate change has become a major threat and has been widely documented in the geographic distribution of many plant species. However, the impacts of climate change on the distribution of ecologically vulnerable medicinal species remain largely unknown. The identification of a suitable habitat for a species under climate change scenario is a significant step towards the mitigation of biodiversity decline. The study, therefore, aims to predict the impact of current, and future climatic scenarios on the distribution of the threatened Garcinia indica across the northern Western Ghats using Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt modelling. The future projections were made for the year 2050 and 2070 with all Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs scenario (2.6, 4.5, 6.0, and 8.5 using 56 species occurrence data, and 19 bioclimatic predictors from the BCC-CSM1.1 model of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change’s (IPCC 5th assessment. The bioclimatic variables were minimised to a smaller number of variables after a multicollinearity test, and their contributions were assessed using jackknife test. The AUC value of 0.956 ± 0.023 indicates that the model performs with excellent accuracy. The study identified that temperature seasonality (39.5 ± 3.1%, isothermality (19.2 ± 1.6%, and annual precipitation (12.7 ± 1.7% would be the major influencing variables in the current and future distribution. The model predicted 10.50% (19318.7 sq. km of the study area as moderately to very highly suitable, while 82.60% (151904 sq. km of the study area was identified as ‘unsuitable’ or ‘very low suitable’. Our predictions of Climate change impact on habitat suitability suggest that there will be a drastic reduction in the suitability by 5.29% and 5.69% under RCP 8.5 for 2050 and 2070, respectively. Objective and Significance: Primary objective of this study is to identify the potential distribution of medicinally and

  7. Biodiversity of Jinggangshan Mountain: the importance of topography and geographical location in supporting higher biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting Zhou

    Full Text Available Diversity is mainly determined by climate and environment. In addition, topography is a complex factor, and the relationship between topography and biodiversity is still poorly understood. To understand the role of topography, i.e., altitude and slope, in biodiversity, we selected Jinggangshan Mountain (JGM, an area with unique topography, as the study area. We surveyed plant and animal species richness of JGM and compared the biodiversity and the main geographic characteristics of JGM with the adjacent 4 mountains. Gleason's richness index was calculated to assess the diversity of species. In total, 2958 spermatophyte species, 418 bryophyte species, 355 pteridophyte species and 493 species of vertebrate animals were recorded in this survey. In general, the JGM biodiversity was higher than that of the adjacent mountains. Regarding topographic characteristics, 77% of JGM's area was in the mid-altitude region and approximately 40% of JGM's area was in the 10°-20° slope range, which may support more vegetation types in JGM area and make it a biodiversity hotspot. It should be noted that although the impact of topography on biodiversity was substantial, climate is still a more general factor driving the formation and maintenance of higher biodiversity. Topographic conditions can create microclimates, and both climatic and topographic conditions contribute to the formation of high biodiversity in JGM.

  8. Amomum nilgiricum (Zingiberaceae, a new species from Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas VP

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A new species of Amomum Roxb. from Western Ghats of Kerala is illustrated and described. Amomum nilgiricum VP.Thomas & M.Sabu, sp. nov. shows similarity with A. masticatorium Thwaites inlong drying ligule with an acuminate apex, pubescent anther and echinate capsules, but differs in clump forming habit with non-stoloniferous rhizomes, tomentose lamina beneath, long corolla tube, obovate to rhomboid labellum with clefted apex and without any colour design, emarginate anther crest and reduced staminodes. Detailed description, illustration, photographs, conservation status, and distributional details are provided.

  9. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F.; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J.; de Santana, Charles N.; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R.; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-05-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics.

  10. Biodiversity Areas under Threat: Overlap of Climate Change and Population Pressures on the World's Biodiversity Priorities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliann E Aukema

    Full Text Available Humans and the ecosystem services they depend on are threatened by climate change. Places with high or growing human population as well as increasing climate variability, have a reduced ability to provide ecosystem services just as the need for these services is most critical. A spiral of vulnerability and ecosystem degradation often ensues in such places. We apply different global conservation schemes as proxies to examine the spatial relation between wet season precipitation, population change over three decades, and natural resource conservation. We pose two research questions: 1 Where are biodiversity and ecosystem services vulnerable to the combined effects of climate change and population growth? 2 Where are human populations vulnerable to degraded ecosystem services? Results suggest that globally only about 20% of the area between 50 degrees latitude North and South has experienced significant change-largely wetting-in wet season precipitation. Approximately 40% of rangelands and 30% of rainfed agriculture lands have experienced significant precipitation changes, with important implications for food security. Over recent decades a number of critical conservation areas experienced high population growth concurrent with significant wetting or drying (e.g. the Horn of Africa, Himalaya, Western Ghats, and Sri Lanka, posing challenges not only for human adaptation but also to the protection and sustenance of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Identifying areas of climate and population risk and their overlap with conservation priorities can help to target activities and resources that promote biodiversity and ecosystem services while improving human well-being.

  11. Key role of European rabbits in the conservation of the Western Mediterranean basin hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delibes-Mateos, Miguel; Delibes, Miguel; Ferreras, Pablo; Villafuerte, Rafael

    2008-10-01

    The Mediterranean Basin is a global hotspot of biodiversity. Hotspots are said to be experiencing a major loss of habitat, but an added risk could be the decline of some species having a special role in ecological relationships of the system. We reviewed the role of European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) as a keystone species in the Iberian Peninsula portion of the Mediterranean hotspot. Rabbits conspicuously alter plant species composition and vegetation structure through grazing and seed dispersal, which creates open areas and preserves plant species diversity. Moreover, rabbit latrines have a demonstrable effect on soil fertility and plant growth and provide new feeding resources for many invertebrate species. Rabbit burrows provide nest sites and shelter for vertebrates and invertebrates. In addition, rabbits serve as prey for a number of predators, including the critically endangered Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) and Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti). Thus, the Mediterranean ecosystem of the Iberian Peninsula should be termed "the rabbit's ecosystem." To our knowledge, this is the first empirical support for existence of a multifunctional keystone species in a global hotspot of biodiversity. Rabbit populations have declined drastically on the Iberian Peninsula, with potential cascading effects and serious ecological and economic consequences. From this perspective, rabbit recovery is one of the biggest challenges for conservation of the Mediterranean Basin hotspot.

  12. Small carnivores of Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, southern Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Sreehari

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The first ever detailed study on the small carnivores of the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve (PkTR in the southern Western Ghats, using camera trap techniques, reported 11 species.  A total of 1,350 camera-trap nights were used for the study.  This was supplemented with 242km of day transects and 344km of night transects using spot-lights.  The small carnivores reported were the Small Indian Civet Viverricula indica, Common Palm Civet Paradoxurus hermaphroditus, Brown Palm Civet Paradoxurus jerdoni, Indian Grey Mongoose Herpestes edwardsii, Stripe-necked Mongoose Herpestes vitticollis, Brown Mongoose Herpestes fuscus, Ruddy Mongoose Herpestes smithii, Smooth-coated Otter Lutrogale perspicillata, Nilgiri Marten Martes gwatkinsii, Jungle Cat Felis chaus and Leopard Cat Prionailurus bengalensis.  About 90% of the small carnivores captured in the camera traps in PKTR were members of the Viverridae family such as the Small Indian Civet (31.67%, Common Palm Civet (30% and Brown Palm Civet (28.33%.  The study recorded all the four species of mongoose known from the Western Ghats from PkTR.  Two out of the 11 small carnivores belong to the ‘Vulnerable’ category on the IUCN Red List. 

  13. Effects of household dynamics on resource consumption and biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jianguo; Daily, Gretchen C; Ehrlich, Paul R; Luck, Gary W

    2003-01-30

    Human population size and growth rate are often considered important drivers of biodiversity loss, whereas household dynamics are usually neglected. Aggregate demographic statistics may mask substantial changes in the size and number of households, and their effects on biodiversity. Household dynamics influence per capita consumption and thus biodiversity through, for example, consumption of wood for fuel, habitat alteration for home building and associated activities, and greenhouse gas emissions. Here we report that growth in household numbers globally, and particularly in countries with biodiversity hotspots (areas rich in endemic species and threatened by human activities), was more rapid than aggregate population growth between 1985 and 2000. Even when population size declined, the number of households increased substantially. Had the average household size (that is, the number of occupants) remained static, there would have been 155 million fewer households in hotspot countries in 2000. Reduction in average household size alone will add a projected 233 million additional households to hotspot countries during the period 2000-15. Rapid increase in household numbers, often manifested as urban sprawl, and resultant higher per capita resource consumption in smaller households pose serious challenges to biodiversity conservation.

  14. Habitat monitoring and conservation prioritisation of protected areas in Western Ghats, Kerala, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athira, K; Reddy, C Sudhakar; Saranya, K R L; Joseph, Shijo; Jaishanker, R

    2017-06-01

    Spatially explicit approach is essential to prioritise the ecosystems for biodiversity conservation. In the present study, the conservation status of 20 protected areas of the Western Ghats of Kerala, India, was analysed based on long-term changes in forests (1975-1985-1995-2005-2013), landscape level changes in fragmentation and forest fires (2005-2015). This study has shown that a significant forest loss occurred in protected areas before declaration. Idukki is one of the major protected areas which showed a drastic reduction (18.83%) in its forest cover. During 1985-1995, Periyar tiger reserve had lost 24.19 km 2 core 3 forest area followed by Peppara (18.54 km 2 ), Parambikulam (17.93 km 2 ), Chimmony (17.71 km 2 ), Peechi-Vazhani (12.31 km 2 ) and Neyyar (11.67 km 2 ). An area of 71.33 km 2 of the protected area was affected by fires in 2014. Overall protected area-wise decadal analysis indicates Periyar has the highest number of fire incidences followed by Wayanad, Kurinjimala, Silent Valley and Eravikulam. Disturbances in the form of fires and fragmentation still exist and may have significant conservation threat to flora and fauna. Among protected areas, many are having a probability to go under threat or dynamic stage. Chinnar, Thattekkad and Kurinjimala sanctuaries are representing high levels of vulnerability, or they are near to decline stage. Habitat level monitoring of the anthropogenic disturbances can be efficiently useful for the strategic conservation planning. The present study has provided geospatial database on spatial patterns of deforestation, fragmentation and forest fires in protected areas of Kerala. Conservation prioritization approach based on these parameters will be useful for the strategic planning in the state of Kerala.

  15. Hotspots of species richness, threat and endemism for terrestrial vertebrates in SW Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pascual, López-López; Luigi, Maiorano; Alessandra, Falcucci; Emilio, Barba; Luigi, Boitani

    2011-09-01

    The Mediterranean basin, and the Iberian Peninsula in particular, represent an outstanding "hotspot" of biological diversity with a long history of integration between natural ecosystems and human activities. Using deductive distribution models, and considering both Spain and Portugal, we downscaled traditional range maps for terrestrial vertebrates (amphibians, breeding birds, mammals and reptiles) to the finest possible resolution with the data at hand, and we identified hotspots based on three criteria: i) species richness; ii) vulnerability, and iii) endemism. We also provided a first evaluation of the conservation status of biodiversity hotspots based on these three criteria considering both existing and proposed protected areas (i.e., Natura 2000). For the identification of hotspots, we used a method based on the cumulative distribution functions of species richness values. We found no clear surrogacy among the different types of hotspots in the Iberian Peninsula. The most important hotspots (considering all criteria) are located in the western and southwestern portions of the study area, in the Mediterranean biogeographical region. Existing protected areas are not specifically concentrated in areas of high species richness, with only 5.2% of the hotspots of total richness being currently protected. The Natura 2000 network can potentially constitute an important baseline for protecting vertebrate diversity in the Iberian Peninsula although further improvements are needed. We suggest taking a step forward in conservation planning in the Mediterranean basin, explicitly considering the history of the region as well as its present environmental context. This would allow moving from traditional reserve networks (conservation focused on "patterns") to considerations about the "processes" that generated present biodiversity.

  16. Isodon purpurescence (Lamiaceae, a new species from Western Ghats, Kerala, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Naveen Kumar

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A new species, Isodon purpurescence Sunil, Naveen Kumar & Ratheesh, from Ernakulam (Western Ghats, India is described and illustrated. Its diagnostic characters are discussed and comments made on differences between this and related species.

  17. European Atlantic: the hottest oil spill hotspot worldwide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieites, David R.; Nieto-Román, Sandra; Palanca, Antonio; Ferrer, Xavier; Vences, Miguel

    2004-11-01

    Oil spills caused by maritime transport of petroleum products are still an important source of ocean pollution, especially in main production areas and along major transport routes. We here provide a historical and geographic analysis of the major oil spills (>700 t) since 1960. Spills were recorded from several key marine ecosystems and marine biodiversity hotspots. The past four decades have been characterized by an overall decrease in the number of accidents and tonnes of oil spilled in the sea, but this trend was less distinct in the European Atlantic area. Recent black tides from the Erika and Prestige vessels provided new evidence for the high risk of accidents with serious ecological impact in this area, which according to our analysis is historically the most important oil spill hotspot worldwide. The English Channel and waters around Galicia in Spain were the areas with most accidents. Maritime transport in European Atlantic waters has been predicted to continue increasing. Together with our own results this suggests that, in addition to measures for increased traffic safety, deployment of emergency capacities in the spill hotspot areas may be crucial for a sustainable conservation of sea resources and ecosystems.

  18. The rain-runoff response of tropical humid forest ecosystems to use and reforestation in the Western Ghats of India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnaswamy, Jagdish; Bonell, Michael; Venkatesh, Basappa; Purandara, Bekal K.; Lele, Sharachchandra; Kiran, M. C.; Reddy, Veerabasawant; Badiger, Shrinivas; Rakesh, K. N.

    2012-11-01

    SummaryThe effects of forest degradation and use and establishment of tree-plantations on degraded or modified forest ecosystems at multi-decadal time-scales using tree-plantations on the streamflow response are less studied in the humid tropics when compared to deforestation and forest conversion to agriculture. In the Western Ghats of India (Uttar Kannada, Karnataka State), a previous soil hydraulic conductivity survey linked with rain IDF (intensity-duration-frequency) had suggested a greater occurrence of infiltration-excess overland within the degraded forest and reforested areas and thus potentially higher streamflow (Bonell et al., 2010). We further tested these predictions in Uttar Kannada by establishing experimental basins ranging from 7 to 23 ha across three ecosystems, (1) remnant tropical evergreen Forest (NF), (2) heavily-used former evergreen forest which now has been converted to tree savanna, known as degraded forest (DF) and (3) exotic Acacia plantations (AC, Acacia auriculiformis) on degraded former forest land. In total, 11 basins were instrumented (3 NF, 4 AC and 4 DF) in two geomorphological zones, i.e., Coastal and Up-Ghat (Malnaad) and at three sites (one Coastal, two Up-Ghat). The rainfall-streamflow observations collected (at daily and also at a 36 min time resolutions in the Coastal basins) over a 2-3 year period (2003-2005) were analysed. In both the Coastal and Up-Ghat basins, the double mass curves showed during the rainy season a consistent trend in favour of more proportion of streamflow in the rank order DF > AC > NF. These double mass curves provide strong evidence that overland flow is progressively becomes a more dominant stormflow pathway. Across all sites, NF converted 28.4 ± 6.41stdev% of rainfall into total streamflow in comparison to 32.7 ± 6.97stdev% in AC and 45.3 ± 9.61stdev% in DF. Further support for the above trends emerges from the quickflow ratio QF/Q for the Coastal basins. There are much higher values for both

  19. The Loss of Biodiversity as a Challenge for Sustainable Development: How Do Pupils in Chile and Germany Perceive Resource Dilemmas?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menzel, Susanne; Bogeholz, Susanne

    2009-01-01

    The topic of biodiversity is of high value for education for sustainable development as it reflects the interaction of ecological, economic and social issues particularly well. Especially in so-called biodiversity hotspots, among them Chile, natural resources are often depleted for economic interest which, in many cases, is required income.…

  20. Amsterdam - St. Paul Hotspot History

    OpenAIRE

    Janin, Myriam; Hémond, Christophe,; Maia, Marcia

    2010-01-01

    The Amsterdam St. Paul hotspot (Indian Ocean) interacts with a regional depleted mantle containing some DUPAL-like blobs. Its lateral motion velocity is about 1-2 cm/yr. The plume induced the construction of a volcanic chain and of an oceanic plateau through two pulses of more intense magmatic activity. The intraplate plate activity appears partially controlled by some tectonic stress induced by the diverging motion of the Australian and Capricorn plates along a diffuse boundary.

  1. Birds and beans: Comparing avian richness and endemism in arabica and robusta agroforests in India's Western Ghats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Charlotte H; Karanth, Krithi K; Robbins, Paul

    2018-02-16

    Coffee is a major tropical commodity crop that can provide supplementary habitat for native wildlife. In Asia, coffee production is an increasingly important driver of landscape transformation and shifts between different coffee species is a major dimension of agroforestry trends. Yet few studies have compared the ecological impacts of conversion between different coffee species. We evaluated whether or not the two species of coffee grown globally-Coffea arabica and C. canephora (denoted "robusta")-had equivalent avian conservation value in the Western Ghats, India, where robusta production has become increasingly dominant. We found that habitat specialist and functional guild diversity was higher in arabica, and that arabica was more profitable. However, robusta farms generally supported the same or slightly higher abundances of habitat specialists and functional guilds, largely due to dense canopy and landscape-level forest cover. Farming practices, chiefly pesticide use, may affect the suitability of coffee agroforests as habitat for avian specialists, and at present, robusta farmers tended to use less pesticide. Given future projections for arabica to robusta conversion in tropical Asia, our study indicates that certification efforts should prioritize maintaining native canopy shade trees and forest cover to ensure that coffee landscapes can continue providing biodiversity benefits.

  2. Odonata (Insecta diversity of Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, the southern Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.K. Adarsh

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available A study was conducted at Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Idukki District, Kerala, the southern Western Ghats, to assess the diversity of odonates. We report 48 species of odonates, which include 31 species of Anisoptera (dragonflies and 17 species of Zygoptera (damselflies. Among the dragonflies, the family Libellulidae dominated with 25 species, while Coenagrionidae with seven species was the dominant family among the damselflies. The odonate diversity of Chinnar WS accounted for 31.16 % of the odonates in Kerala and 27.58% of the odonates of the Western Ghats. Chinnar also recorded two species of odonates that are endemic to the Western Ghats, which are, the Pied Reed Tail Protosticta gravelyi and the Travancore Bamboo Tail Esme mudiensis.

  3. Endophytic Fungal Diversity in Medicinal Plants of Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monnanda Somaiah Nalini

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Endophytes constitute an important component of microbial diversity, and in the present investigation, seven plant species with rich ethnobotanical uses representing six families were analyzed for the presence of endophytic fungi from their natural habitats during monsoon (May/June and winter (November/December seasons of 2007. Fungal endophytes were isolated from healthy plant parts such as stem, root, rhizome, and inflorescence employing standard isolation methods. One thousand five hundred and twenty-nine fungal isolates were obtained from 5200 fragments. Stem fragments harbored more endophytes (80.37% than roots (19.22%. 31 fungal taxa comprised of coelomycetes (65%, hyphomycetes (32%, and ascomycetes (3%. Fusarium, Acremonium, Colletotrichum, Chaetomium, Myrothecium, Phomopsis, and Pestalotiopsis spp. were commonly isolated. Diversity indices differed significantly between the seasons (P<0.001. Species richness was greater for monsoon isolations than winter. Host specificity was observed for few fungal endophytes. UPGMA cluster analysis grouped the endophytes into distinct clusters on the basis of genetic distance. This study is the first report on the diversity and host-specificity of endophytic fungal taxa were from the semi evergreen forest type in Talacauvery subcluster of Western Ghats.

  4. Livestock biodiversity and sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoffmann, I.

    2011-01-01

    Sustainable development equally includes environmental protection including biodiversity, economic growth and social equity, both within and between generations. The paper first reviews different aspects related to the sustainable use of livestock biodiversity and property regimes that influence

  5. Carnivore hotspots in Peninsular Malaysia and their landscape attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratnayeke, Shyamala; van Manen, Frank T.; Clements, Gopalasamy Reuben; Mohd Kulaimi, Noor Azleen; Sharp, Stuart P.

    2018-01-01

    Mammalian carnivores play a vital role in ecosystem functioning. However, they are prone to extinction because of low population densities and growth rates, and high levels of persecution or exploitation. In tropical biodiversity hotspots such as Peninsular Malaysia, rapid conversion of natural habitats threatens the persistence of this vulnerable group of animals. Here, we carried out the first comprehensive literature review on 31 carnivore species reported to occur in Peninsular Malaysia and updated their probable distribution. We georeferenced 375 observations of 28 species of carnivore from 89 unique geographic locations using records spanning 1948 to 2014. Using the Getis-Ord Gi*statistic and weighted survey records by IUCN Red List status, we identified hotspots of species that were of conservation concern and built regression models to identify environmental and anthropogenic landscape factors associated with Getis-Ord Gi* z scores. Our analyses identified two carnivore hotspots that were spatially concordant with two of the peninsula’s largest and most contiguous forest complexes, associated with Taman Negara National Park and Royal Belum State Park. A cold spot overlapped with the southwestern region of the Peninsula, reflecting the disappearance of carnivores with higher conservation rankings from increasingly fragmented natural habitats. Getis-Ord Gi* z scores were negatively associated with elevation, and positively associated with the proportion of natural land cover and distance from the capital city. Malaysia contains some of the world’s most diverse carnivore assemblages, but recent rates of forest loss are some of the highest in the world. Reducing poaching and maintaining large, contiguous tracts of lowland forests will be crucial, not only for the persistence of threatened carnivores, but for many mammalian species in general.

  6. Carnivore hotspots in Peninsular Malaysia and their landscape attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Manen, Frank T.

    2018-01-01

    Mammalian carnivores play a vital role in ecosystem functioning. However, they are prone to extinction because of low population densities and growth rates, and high levels of persecution or exploitation. In tropical biodiversity hotspots such as Peninsular Malaysia, rapid conversion of natural habitats threatens the persistence of this vulnerable group of animals. Here, we carried out the first comprehensive literature review on 31 carnivore species reported to occur in Peninsular Malaysia and updated their probable distribution. We georeferenced 375 observations of 28 species of carnivore from 89 unique geographic locations using records spanning 1948 to 2014. Using the Getis-Ord Gi*statistic and weighted survey records by IUCN Red List status, we identified hotspots of species that were of conservation concern and built regression models to identify environmental and anthropogenic landscape factors associated with Getis-Ord Gi* z scores. Our analyses identified two carnivore hotspots that were spatially concordant with two of the peninsula’s largest and most contiguous forest complexes, associated with Taman Negara National Park and Royal Belum State Park. A cold spot overlapped with the southwestern region of the Peninsula, reflecting the disappearance of carnivores with higher conservation rankings from increasingly fragmented natural habitats. Getis-Ord Gi* z scores were negatively associated with elevation, and positively associated with the proportion of natural land cover and distance from the capital city. Malaysia contains some of the world’s most diverse carnivore assemblages, but recent rates of forest loss are some of the highest in the world. Reducing poaching and maintaining large, contiguous tracts of lowland forests will be crucial, not only for the persistence of threatened carnivores, but for many mammalian species in general. PMID:29617402

  7. Additional record of Resplendent Bush Frog Raorchestes resplendent (Anura: Rhacophoridae from the Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Joseph

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Raorchestes resplendens, a Critically Endangered rhacophorid frog until now is known only from the type locality, the Anamudi summit in Eravikulam National Park, southern Western Ghats, Kerala. This species has been sighted from a hitherto unknown location, but within the Eravikulam National Park. The current sighting location of the species is about 20km north-east to the type locality. This report increased the range of R. resplendens and also emphasis the cryptic behavior and microclimate requirement of this species. This sighting once again signifies the importance for the conservation of the high-altitude grasslands of Western Ghats.

  8. Plant diversity hotspots in the Atlantic coastal forests of Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray-Smith, Charlotte; Brummitt, Neil A; Oliveira-Filho, Ary T; Bachman, Steven; Moat, Justin; Lughadha, Eimear M Nic; Lucas, Eve J

    2009-02-01

    Plant-diversity hotspots on a global scale are well established, but smaller local hotspots within these must be identified for effective conservation of plants at the global and local scales. We used the distributions of endemic and endemic-threatened species of Myrtaceae to indicate areas of plant diversity and conservation importance within the Atlantic coastal forests (Mata Atlântica) of Brazil. We applied 3 simple, inexpensive geographic information system (GIS) techniques to a herbarium specimen database: predictive species-distribution modeling (Maxent); complementarity analysis (DIVA-GIS); and mapping of herbarium specimen collection locations. We also considered collecting intensity, which is an inherent limitation of use of natural history records for biodiversity studies. Two separate areas of endemism were evident: the Serra do Mar mountain range from Paraná to Rio de Janeiro and the coastal forests of northern Espírito Santo and southern Bahia. We identified 12 areas of approximately 35 km(2) each as priority areas for conservation. These areas had the highest species richness and were highly threatened by urban and agricultural expansion. Observed species occurrences, species occurrences predicted from the model, and results of our complementarity analysis were congruent in identifying those areas with the most endemic species. These areas were then prioritized for conservation importance by comparing ecological data for each.

  9. Biodiversity in the Marketplace

    OpenAIRE

    Geoffrey Heal

    2000-01-01

    What is the nature of biodiversity as an economic commodity and why does it matter? How would its conservation contribute economically to our well-being? In this article, Geoffrey Heal considers three issues: Why is biodiversity important from an economic perspective? What kind of commodity is it? Does our usual economic mechanism, the market system, have the capacity to appreciate the economic value of biodiversity? The author first tries to characterize biodiversity from an economic perspec...

  10. Paradoxes in Biodiversity Conservation

    OpenAIRE

    David Pearce

    2005-01-01

    Biodiversity is important for human wellbeing, but it is declining. Measures to conserve biodiversity are essential but may be a waste of effort if several paradoxes are not addressed. The highest levels of diversity are in nations least able to practise effective conservation. The flow of funds to international biodiversity conservation appears trivial when compared to the scale of biodiversity loss. International agreements may not actually protect or conserve more than what would have been...

  11. Rio+20, biodiversity marginalized

    OpenAIRE

    Carrière, Stéphanie M.; Rodary, Estienne; Méral, Philippe; Serpantié, Georges; Boisvert, Valérie; Kull, C.A.; Lestrelin, Guillaume; Lhoutellier, Louise; Moizo, Bernard; Smektala, G.; Vandevelde, Jean-Christophe

    2013-01-01

    At the Rio+20 Conference (June 2012), the biodiversity conservation agenda was subsumed into broader environmental issues like sustainable development, “green economy,” and climate change. This shoehorning of biodiversity issues is concomitant with a trend toward market-based instruments and toward standardized biodiversity assessment and monitoring. This article raises concern that these trends can marginalize important and specific aspects of biodiversity governance, including other policy ...

  12. The Red Queen theory of recombination hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ubeda, F; Wilkins, J F

    2011-03-01

    Recombination hotspots are small chromosomal regions, where meiotic crossover events happen with high frequency. Recombination is initiated by a double-strand break (DSB) that requires the intervention of the molecular repair mechanism. The DSB repair mechanism may result in the exchange of homologous chromosomes (crossover) and the conversion of the allelic sequence that breaks into the one that does not break (biased gene conversion). Biased gene conversion results in a transmission advantage for the allele that does not break, thus preventing recombination and rendering recombination hotspots transient. How is it possible that recombination hotspots persist over evolutionary time (maintaining the average chromosomal crossover rate) when they are self-destructive? This fundamental question is known as the recombination hotspot paradox and has attracted much attention in recent years. Yet, that attention has not translated into a fully satisfactory answer. No existing model adequately explains all aspects of the recombination hotspot paradox. Here, we formulate an intragenomic conflict model resulting in Red Queen dynamics that fully accounts for all empirical observations regarding the molecular mechanisms of recombination hotspots, the nonrandom targeting of the recombination machinery to hotspots and the evolutionary dynamics of hotspot turnover. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2010 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  13. Capturing Hotspots For Constrained Indoor Movement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahmed, Tanvir; Pedersen, Torben Bach; Lu, Hua

    2013-01-01

    Finding the hotspots in large indoor spaces is very important for getting overloaded locations, security, crowd management, indoor navigation and guidance. The tracking data coming from indoor tracking are huge in volume and not readily available for finding hotspots. This paper presents a graph...

  14. Biodiversity and globalization

    OpenAIRE

    Heal, Geoffrey

    2002-01-01

    Reduction of the earth’s biodiversity as a result of human activities is a matter of great concern to prominent scientists. What are the economic aspects of this loss? In economic terms, what is biodiversity and why might it matter? And is the loss of biodiversity in any way connected with globalization of the economy?

  15. Knowing Agricultural Biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Mulvany, P.

    2001-01-01

    The term "agricultural biodiversity" is relatively recent, perhaps post-CBD. Although, the specific nature of the biodiversity used by people was recognised for a long time, the overwhelming emphasis in the CBD was on general biodiversity, mainly 'wild' flora and fauna that inhabit this fragile biosphere in which people also live.

  16. Microbial hotspots and hot moments in soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuzyakov, Yakov; Blagodatskaya, Evgenia

    2015-04-01

    Soils are the most heterogeneous parts of the biosphere, with an extremely high differentiation of properties and processes within nano- to macroscales. The spatial and temporal heterogeneity of input of labile organics by plants creates microbial hotspots over short periods of time - the hot moments. We define microbial hotspots as small soil volumes with much faster process rates and much more intensive interactions compared to the average soil conditions. Such hotspots are found in the rhizosphere, detritusphere, biopores (including drilosphere) and on aggregate surfaces, but hotspots are frequently of mixed origin. Hot moments are short-term events or sequences of events inducing accelerated process rates as compared to the averaged rates. Thus, hotspots and hot moments are defined by dynamic characteristics, i.e. by process rates. For this hotspot concept we extensively reviewed and examined the localization and size of hotspots, spatial distribution and visualization approaches, transport of labile C to and from hotspots, lifetime and process intensities, with a special focus on process rates and microbial activities. The fraction of active microorganisms in hotspots is 2-20 times higher than in the bulk soil, and their specific activities (i.e. respiration, microbial growth, mineralization potential, enzyme activities, RNA/DNA ratio) may also be much higher. The duration of hot moments in the rhizosphere is limited and is controlled by the length of the input of labile organics. It can last a few hours up to a few days. In the detritusphere, however, the duration of hot moments is regulated by the output - by decomposition rates of litter - and lasts for weeks and months. Hot moments induce succession in microbial communities and intense intra- and interspecific competition affecting C use efficiency, microbial growth and turnover. The faster turnover and lower C use efficiency in hotspots counterbalances the high C inputs, leading to the absence of strong

  17. Exploring wild genetic resources of Musa acuminata Colla distributed in the humid forests of southern Western Ghats of peninsular India using ISSR markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padmesh, P; Mukunthakumar, S; Vineesh, P S; Skaria, Reby; Hari Kumar, K; Krishnan, P N

    2012-09-01

    Musa acuminata ssp. burmannica, one of the wild progenitors contributing 'A genome' to the present-day dessert bananas, has a long evolutionary history intervened by human activities. In this study, ISSR markers were used to analyze the pattern of genetic variation and differentiation in 32 individuals along with two reference samples (viz., Musa acuminata ssp. burmannicoides, var. Calcutta 4 and Musa balbisiana) of wild Musa, which corresponded to three populations across the biodiversity-rich hot spot of southern Western Ghats of India. High levels of genetic diversity were revealed both at the species and population levels, using Nei's diversity indices. The hierarchical analysis of molecular variance showed pronounced genetic differentiation, as 96% of the total variance was fixed within population and only 4% among populations. Nei's genetic differentiation coefficient (GST=0.1823) and low gene flow (Nm=1.18) further confirmed this. The positive correlation (Mantel test) between geographic distance and genetic distance (r=0.338 P<0.001) indicates geographic isolation as one of the key factors in shaping the population genetic structure. Grouping of individuals was largely in conformity with their spatial distribution, which was confirmed by UPGMA cluster analysis and PCA scatter plot clustering all 32 individuals into three major groups along a geographical gradient. The discontinuous distribution and dwindling population due to habitat fragmentation are serious threats to prevailing genetic diversity in this species. Conservation measures based on diversity pattern are suggested for long-term preservation and sustainable utilization of this precious genetic resource. A diverse germplasm of Musa acuminata ssp. burmannica exists in southern Western Ghats as a possible repository of useful resistant traits, which can be effectively utilized for crop improvement.

  18. Has land use pushed terrestrial biodiversity beyond the planetary boundary? A global assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newbold, Tim; Hudson, Lawrence N; Arnell, Andrew P; Contu, Sara; De Palma, Adriana; Ferrier, Simon; Hill, Samantha L L; Hoskins, Andrew J; Lysenko, Igor; Phillips, Helen R P; Burton, Victoria J; Chng, Charlotte W T; Emerson, Susan; Gao, Di; Pask-Hale, Gwilym; Hutton, Jon; Jung, Martin; Sanchez-Ortiz, Katia; Simmons, Benno I; Whitmee, Sarah; Zhang, Hanbin; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2016-07-15

    Land use and related pressures have reduced local terrestrial biodiversity, but it is unclear how the magnitude of change relates to the recently proposed planetary boundary ("safe limit"). We estimate that land use and related pressures have already reduced local biodiversity intactness--the average proportion of natural biodiversity remaining in local ecosystems--beyond its recently proposed planetary boundary across 58.1% of the world's land surface, where 71.4% of the human population live. Biodiversity intactness within most biomes (especially grassland biomes), most biodiversity hotspots, and even some wilderness areas is inferred to be beyond the boundary. Such widespread transgression of safe limits suggests that biodiversity loss, if unchecked, will undermine efforts toward long-term sustainable development. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  19. Spatial congruence between carbon and biodiversity across forest landscapes of northern Borneo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Labrière

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding how carbon and biodiversity vary across tropical forest landscapes is essential to achieving effective conservation of their respective hotspots in a global context of high deforestation. Whether conservation strategies aimed at protecting carbon hotspots can provide co-benefits for biodiversity protection, and vice versa, highly depends on the extent to which carbon and biodiversity co-occur at the landscape level. We used field measurements and easily accessible explanatory variables to model aboveground carbon density, soil carbon density and tree alpha diversity (response variables over a mostly forested area of northern Borneo. We assessed the spatial relationships between response variables and the spatial congruence of their hotspots. We found a significant positive relationship between aboveground carbon density and tree alpha diversity, and an above-than-expected-by-chance spatial congruence of their hotspots. Consequently, the protection of areas of high aboveground carbon density through financial mechanisms such as REDD+ is expected to benefit tree diversity conservation in the study area. On the other hand, relationships between soil carbon density and both aboveground carbon density and tree alpha diversity were negative and spatial congruences null. Hotspots of soil carbon density, mostly located in peatlands, therefore need specific conservation regulations, which the current moratorium on peat conversion in Indonesia is a first step toward.

  20. Comparison of insect biodiversity between organic and conventional plantations in Kodagu, Karnataka, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Mone

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available We undertook a comparative analysis of ground insects and fruit eating butterflies on 29 different plantations in Kodagu District of Karnataka which is one of the rich biodiversity zones of the Western Ghats. These included organic and conventional coffee and cardamom plantations using different levels of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. A total number of 457 ground insect species were collected using pit-fall traps which included 92 species of ants and 123 species of beetles, among other insect taxa that we measured. Similarly, 25 species of butterflies belonging to the family Nymphalidae were collected using bait traps. We found a clear negative effect on the ground insect species diversity (Shannon index and evenness (Shannon evenness index in pesticide treated plantations as compared to the organic plantations. A similar negative effect was observed for butterfly diversity in plantations using pesticides. Our results corroborate the value of organic plantations in supporting higher levels of biodiversity.

  1. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series : Validation and documentation of rare endemic and threatened (RET plants from Nilgiri, Kanuvai and Madukkarai forests of southern Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K.M.P. Kumar

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available A botanical survey conducted in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Madukkarai and Kanuvai forests of Tamil Nadu, Southern Western Ghats led to the validation and documentation of many RET plants. The plants are properly identified and documented. Among them 51 selected species belonging to 38 genera, 26 families and two subfamilies are presented here. Short notes about their habit, habitat, locality and endemism are also included along with three colour photos.

  2. The first teresomatan caecilian (Amphibia: Gymnophiona) from the Eastern Ghats of India--a new species of Gegeneophis Peters, 1880.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Ishan; Wilkinson, Mark; Mohapatra, Pratyush P; Dutta, Sushil K; Giri, Varad B; Gower, David J

    2013-01-01

    A new species of caecilian amphibian, Gegeneophis orientalis sp. nov., is described based on a series of nine specimens from high elevation (ca. 1,200 m) habitats in the Eastern Ghats in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha, India. This species differs from all other congeners in having only bicuspid teeth in the outer as well as inner rows. The new species is the first caecilian reported from the state of Odisha, the first teresomatan caecilian from the Eastern Ghats, and is the only Indian indotyphlid known from outside the Western Ghats region.

  3. Biodiversity and key ecosystem services in agroforestry coffee systems in the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest Biome

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Souza, de H.N.

    2012-01-01

    The thesis reports the results of long-term experimentation (since 1993) of family farmers with agroforestry (AF) coffee systems in the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest region, a highly fragmented and threatened biodiversity hotspot. The farmers used native trees from forest fragments during a

  4. Biodiversity and key ecosystem services in agroforestry coffee systems in the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest Biome

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Souza, de H.N.

    2012-01-01

    The thesis reports the results of long-term experimentation (since 1993) of family farmers with agroforestry (AF) coffee systems in the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest region, a highly fragmented and threatened biodiversity hotspot. The farmers used native trees from forest fragments during a

  5. Taiwanascus samuelsii sp. nov., an addition to Niessliaceae from the Western Ghats, Kerala, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    A new species of Taiwanascus, T. samuelsii, was collected from southern parts of Western Ghats on dead branches of Anacardium occidentale and is described. The new cleistothecial ascomycete is different from the type and only species in Taiwanascus, T. tetrasporus, in cleistothecial size, setae, and...

  6. Sahyadria, a new genus of barbs (Teleostei: Cyprinidae from Western Ghats of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Raghavan

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Redline Torpedo Barbs (Teleostei: Cyprinidae, comprising of two species, Puntius denisonii and P. chalakkudiensis, and six evolutionarily distinct lineages are endemic to the streams of the Western Ghats freshwater ecoregion in peninsular India. Based on molecular and osteological evidence, we demonstrate that these barbs comprise a distinct genus, for which we propose the name Sahyadria.

  7. Alkaline intrusion in a granulite ensemble in the Eastern Ghats belt ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    R. Narasimhan (Krishtel eMaging) 1461 1996 Oct 15 13:05:22

    Transition zone. Alkaline complex. Figure 1. Generalized geological map of the Eastern Ghats belt, modified after Ramakrishnan et al 1998. Important locations: 1. Bhuban, 2. Jenapore, 3. Angul, 4. Chilka, 5. Paderu, 6. Paikmal, 7. Deobhog, 8. Lakhna, 9. Jaypur,. 10. Koraput. types in this high-grade belt. This belt has the.

  8. Description ofPleurogenoides cyanophlyctin. sp. (Digenea: Pleurogenidae) infectingEuphlyctis cyanophlyctisfrom the Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinad, K; Prasadan, P K

    2018-03-01

    Pleurogenoides cyanophlycti n. sp. (Digenea, Pleurogenidae ) from the intestine of the water skipper, Euphlyctis cyanophlyctis (Anura, Dicroglossidae), inhabiting the Western Ghats, India is described and illustrated. Pleurogenoides cyanophlycti n. sp. is new to the genus and is separated from its congeners on the basis of differences in morphology and morphometry. It is named after the host, E. cyanophlyctis .

  9. Phytochemicals of selected plant species of the Apocynaceae and Asclepiadaceae from Western Ghats, Tamil Nadu, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    A concern about the declining supply of petroleum products has led to a renewed interest in evaluating plant species as potential alternate sources of energy. Five species of the Apocynaceae and three species of the Asclepiadaceae from the Western Ghats were evaluated as alternative sources of energ...

  10. Alkaline intrusion in a granulite ensemble in the Eastern Ghats belt ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The alkaline complex of Koraput, Orissa, India, is one of several bodies in the high-grade Eastern Ghats belt, but this one is an integral part of the high-grade belt and remote from the western boundary against the Bastar craton. The Koraput complex forms a lozenge-shaped intrusion into the metapelitic granulites and is ...

  11. A reappraisal of polymetamorphism in the Eastern Ghats belt – A ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    R. Narasimhan (Krishtel eMaging) 1461 1996 Oct 15 13:05:22

    African granulites in the Eastern Ghats belt north of the ... Partial resetting during a late, Pan-African ther- mal overprint at ∼550 Ma has also been ... geochronologic studies in the southern sector imply that north of the Godavari, the Eastern ...

  12. Next-generation invaders? Hotspots for naturalised sleeper weeds in Australia under future climates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daisy Englert Duursma

    Full Text Available Naturalised, but not yet invasive plants, pose a nascent threat to biodiversity. As climate regimes continue to change, it is likely that a new suite of invaders will emerge from the established pool of naturalised plants. Pre-emptive management of locations that may be most suitable for a large number of potentially invasive plants will help to target monitoring, and is vital for effective control. We used species distribution models (SDM and invasion-hotspot analysis to determine where in Australia suitable habitat may occur for 292 naturalised plants. SDMs were built in MaxEnt using both climate and soil variables for current baseline conditions. Modelled relationships were projected onto two Representative Concentration Pathways for future climates (RCP 4.5 and 8.5, based on seven global climate models, for two time periods (2035, 2065. Model outputs for each of the 292 species were then aggregated into single 'hotspot' maps at two scales: continental, and for each of Australia's 37 ecoregions. Across Australia, areas in the south-east and south-west corners of the continent were identified as potential hotspots for naturalised plants under current and future climates. These regions provided suitable habitat for 288 and 239 species respectively under baseline climates. The areal extent of the continental hotspot was projected to decrease by 8.8% under climates for 2035, and by a further 5.2% by 2065. A similar pattern of hotspot contraction under future climates was seen for the majority of ecoregions examined. However, two ecoregions - Tasmanian temperate forests and Australian Alps montane grasslands - showed increases in the areal extent of hotspots of >45% under climate scenarios for 2065. The alpine ecoregion also had an increase in the number of naturalised plant species with abiotically suitable habitat under future climate scenarios, indicating that this area may be particularly vulnerable to future incursions by naturalised plants.

  13. Next-generation invaders? Hotspots for naturalised sleeper weeds in Australia under future climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duursma, Daisy Englert; Gallagher, Rachael V; Roger, Erin; Hughes, Lesley; Downey, Paul O; Leishman, Michelle R

    2013-01-01

    Naturalised, but not yet invasive plants, pose a nascent threat to biodiversity. As climate regimes continue to change, it is likely that a new suite of invaders will emerge from the established pool of naturalised plants. Pre-emptive management of locations that may be most suitable for a large number of potentially invasive plants will help to target monitoring, and is vital for effective control. We used species distribution models (SDM) and invasion-hotspot analysis to determine where in Australia suitable habitat may occur for 292 naturalised plants. SDMs were built in MaxEnt using both climate and soil variables for current baseline conditions. Modelled relationships were projected onto two Representative Concentration Pathways for future climates (RCP 4.5 and 8.5), based on seven global climate models, for two time periods (2035, 2065). Model outputs for each of the 292 species were then aggregated into single 'hotspot' maps at two scales: continental, and for each of Australia's 37 ecoregions. Across Australia, areas in the south-east and south-west corners of the continent were identified as potential hotspots for naturalised plants under current and future climates. These regions provided suitable habitat for 288 and 239 species respectively under baseline climates. The areal extent of the continental hotspot was projected to decrease by 8.8% under climates for 2035, and by a further 5.2% by 2065. A similar pattern of hotspot contraction under future climates was seen for the majority of ecoregions examined. However, two ecoregions - Tasmanian temperate forests and Australian Alps montane grasslands - showed increases in the areal extent of hotspots of >45% under climate scenarios for 2065. The alpine ecoregion also had an increase in the number of naturalised plant species with abiotically suitable habitat under future climate scenarios, indicating that this area may be particularly vulnerable to future incursions by naturalised plants.

  14. Not seeing the grass for the trees: Timber plantations and agriculture shrink tropical montane grassland by two-thirds over four decades in the Palani Hills, a Western Ghats Sky Island.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arasumani, M; Khan, Danish; Das, Arundhati; Lockwood, Ian; Stewart, Robert; Kiran, Ravi A; Muthukumar, M; Bunyan, Milind; Robin, V V

    2018-01-01

    Tropical montane habitats, grasslands, in particular, merit urgent conservation attention owing to the disproportionate levels of endemic biodiversity they harbour, the ecosystem services they provide, and the fact that they are among the most threatened habitats globally. The Shola Sky Islands in the Western Ghats host a matrix of native forest-grassland matrix that has been planted over the last century, with exotic timber plantations. The popular discourse on the landscape change is that mainly forests have been lost to the timber plantations and recent court directives are to restore Shola forest trees. In this study, we examine spatiotemporal patterns of landscape change over the last 40 years in the Palani Hills, a significant part of the montane habitat in the Western Ghats. Using satellite imagery and field surveys, we find that 66% of native grasslands and 31% of native forests have been lost over the last 40 years. Grasslands have gone from being the dominant, most contiguous land cover to one of the rarest and most fragmented. They have been replaced by timber plantations and, to a lesser extent, expanding agriculture. We find that the spatial pattern of grassland loss to plantations differs from the loss to agriculture, likely driven by the invasion of plantation species into grasslands. We identify remnant grasslands that should be prioritised for conservation and make specific recommendations for conservation and restoration of grasslands in light of current management policy in the Palani Hills, which favours large-scale removal of plantations and emphasises the restoration of native forests.

  15. Putting 'Local' Back into Public Wifi Hotspots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Korn, Matthias; Klokmose, Clemens Nylandsted

    2012-01-01

    Public Wifi hotspots in cafes and public places are based on wireless local area network technology (WLAN). In contrast to the common understanding of connecting directly to the internet when connecting to a Wifi hotspot, we are proposing to bring the original notion of connecting to a local...... hotspot in cafes, bars, community centers, and other (semi-)public places in order to facilitate co-located activities for such varied purposes as fostering local community, civic participation, sociality in general, and entertainment. We propose a network locality that builds on local infrastructure...

  16. The detection of thermophilous forest hotspots in Poland using geostatistical interpolation of plant richness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcin Kiedrzyński

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Attempts to study biodiversity hotspots on a regional scale should combine compositional and functionalist criteria. The detection of hotspots in this study uses one ecologically similar group of high conservation value species as hotspot indicators, as well as focal habitat indicators, to detect the distribution of suitable environmental conditions. The method is assessed with reference to thermophilous forests in Poland – key habitats for many rare and relict species. Twenty-six high conservation priority species were used as hotspot indicators, and ten plant taxa characteristic of the Quercetalia pubescenti-petraeae phytosociological order were used as focal habitat indicators. Species distribution data was based on a 10 × 10 km grid. The number of species per grid square was interpolated by the ordinary kriging geostatistical method. Our analysis largely determined the distribution of areas with concentration of thermophilous forest flora, but also regional disjunctions and geographical barriers. Indicator species richness can be interpreted as a reflection of the actual state of habitat conditions. It can also be used to determine the location of potential species refugia and possible past and future migration routes.

  17. Forest Structure, Composition and Above Ground Biomass of Tree Community in Tropical Dry Forests of Eastern Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sudam Charan SAHU

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The study of biomass, structure and composition of tropical forests implies also the investigation of forest productivity, protection of biodiversity and removal of CO2 from the atmosphere via C-stocks. The hereby study aimed at understanding the forest structure, composition and above ground biomass (AGB of tropical dry deciduous forests of Eastern Ghats, India, where as a total of 128 sample plots (20 x 20 meters were laid. The study showed the presence of 71 tree species belonging to 57 genera and 30 families. Dominant tree species was Shorea robusta with an importance value index (IVI of 40.72, while Combretaceae had the highest family importance value (FIV of 39.01. Mean stand density was 479 trees ha-1 and a basal area of 15.20 m2 ha-1. Shannon’s diversity index was 2.01 ± 0.22 and Simpson’s index was 0.85 ± 0.03. About 54% individuals were in the size between 10 and 20 cm DBH, indicating growing forests. Mean above ground biomass value was 98.87 ± 68.8 Mg ha-1. Some of the dominant species that contributed to above ground biomass were Shorea robusta (17.2%, Madhuca indica (7.9%, Mangifera indica (6.9%, Terminalia alata (6.9% and Diospyros melanoxylon (4.4%, warranting extra efforts for their conservation. The results suggested that C-stocks of tropical dry forests can be enhanced by in-situ conserving the high C-density species and also by selecting these species for afforestation and stand improvement programs. Correlations were computed to understand the relationship between above ground biomass, diversity indices, density and basal area, which may be helpful for implementation of REDD+ (reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and foster conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks scheme.

  18. Coral Reef Watch, Hotspots, 50 km

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NOAA Coral Reef Watch provides Coral Bleaching hotspot maps derived from NOAA's Polar Operational Environmental Satellites (POES). This data provides global area...

  19. The value of biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Association of Chartered Certified Accountants

    2011-01-01

    In addition to its intrinsic value (nature working as it is; species are the product of a long history of continuing evolution by means of ecological processes, and so they have the right to continued existence), biodiversity also plays a fundamental role as ecosystem services in the maintenance of natural ecological processes. The economic or utilitarian values of biodiversity rely upon the dependence of man on biodiversity; products that nature can provide: wood, food, fibers to make paper,...

  20. Updated test of fixity of the Iceland hotspot relative to Pacific hotspots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koivisto, E.; Andrews, D. L.; Gordon, R. G.

    2008-12-01

    Hotspot fixity has long been challenged on the basis of plate-circuit reconstructions. If the motion of one plate over its hotspots is known, and if these hotspots are assumed to be fixed with respect to those under the second plate, reconstructions of the past positions of the two plates can be used to compare the predicted positions of hotspots under the second plate with its known trace. If the plates are rigid, if all ancient plate boundaries in the global plate circuit have been recognized and incorporated, and if hotspots are fixed relative to one another, the predicted track should coincide with the known trace (within uncertainties). Inconsistencies, on the other hand, give an estimate of the relative motion between hotspots. Here we present updated predictions for the track of the Iceland hotspot assuming it to be fixed relative to a Pacific hotspot reference frame. We build on a new method for objectively estimating plate-hotspot rotations and their uncertainties (Andrews et al., 2006). Besides the uncertainties in plate-hotspot rotations, uncertainties in relative plate motions are accumulated through the plate circuit to obtain the final uncertainty in the predicted positions. Predictions are made for ages of 11 Ma (chron 5), 20 Ma (chron 6), 33 Ma (chron 13), 39 Ma (chron 18), 48 Ma (chron 21), 56 Ma (chron 25) and 68 Ma (chron 31). The current position of the Iceland hotspot is taken to be at 64°N, 344°E. The observed and predicted Iceland hotspot tracks are not significantly different over the past 48 Myr. The 68 Ma reconstructed point, however, lies ~1100 km from the oldest lavas on the West Coast of Greenland dated as about 65 Ma (Larsen et al., 1992). If this misfit occurred entirely between 68 Ma and 48 Ma, it gives an early Tertiary rate of motion between the Iceland and Pacific hotspots of about 55 ± 15 mm yr-1. Thus, we show that the Iceland hotspot has had no significant motion relative to a Pacific hotspot frame since 48 Ma. Prior to 48

  1. Report on the extended distribution of two endemic plants (Angiospermae in the central Western Ghats of Karnataka, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G.R. Hegde

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In an extensive floristic diversity study in Uttara Kannada District of Karnataka State, authors collected the specimens of Celastrus paniculatus Willd. subsp. aggregatus K. T. Mathew and Canscora sanjappae Diwakar & R. Kr. Singh, the two endemics of Western Ghats. Present paper discusses the extended distribution of these two endemics in the Western Ghats with complete description, images and a note on their distribution.

  2. On the occurrence of Theobaldius(? tristis (Blanford, 1869 (Caenogastropoda: Cyclophoridae in the northern Western Ghats, Maharashtra, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amrut R. Bhosale

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Theobaldius(? tristis is the land operculate snail earlier localized from South Kanara and Tinnevelly i.e. central and Southern Western Ghats according to the previous scientific literature. Occurrence of the T. tristis is reported first time from Kolhapur District, southern Maharashtra and thus includes the distribution into the northern Western Ghats. The observations of the present study are discussed in the lite of distribution of snail in this region, shell and operculum characters of T. tristis.

  3. Forest Dynamics in the Eastern Ghats of Tamil Nadu, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, S.; Ramachandran, A.; Bhaskaran, G.; Heo, J.

    2009-02-01

    The primary deciduous forests in the Eastern Ghats (EG) of Tamil Nadu (TN) India have undergone many changes owing to various need-based forest managements, such as timber extraction for industry, railway sleepers, charcoal, and forest clearance for hydroelectric projects and agriculture, during preindependence and postindependence periods (i.e., from 1800 to 1980). The enactment of a forest conservation act during the 1980s changed the perception of forest managers from utilization to conservation. This study was taken up to assess the forests dynamics in the EG of TN spatially between 1990 and 2003 and nonspatially between 1900 and the 1980s. Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and Indian Remote Sensing satellite (IRS) 1D Linear Imaging and Self Scanning (LISS III) data were used to assess forests during 1990 and 2003, respectively. Field floristic survey and secondary data (such as published literature, floras, books, and forest working plans) were used to assess the forest dynamics in terms of forest type and species composition among the preindependence period, the postindependence period, and the present (i.e., before and after 1980). The satellite data analysis revealed a considerable amount of changes in all forest types during the 13 years. The comparison of species composition and forest types between the past and present revealed that need-based forest management along with anthropogenic activity have altered the primary deciduous forest in to secondary and postextraction secondary forests such as southern thorn and southern thorn scrub forests in the middle [400-900 m above mean sea level (MSL)] and lower slopes (900 m MSL) and plateau seemed not to be much affected by the forest management. The changes estimated by the satellite data processing in the major forest types such as evergreen, deciduous, southern thorn, and southern thorn scrub are really alarming because these changes have occurred after the implementation of a forest conservation act. The

  4. Biodiversity and Climate Change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Onyango, J.C.O.; Ojoo-Massawa, E.; Abira, M.A.

    1997-01-01

    Biological diversity or biodiversity is crucial for ecological stability including regulation of climate change, recreational and medicinal use; and scientific advancement. Kenya like other developing countries, especially, those in Sub-Saharan Africa, will continue to depend greatly on her biodiversity for present and future development. This important resource must, therefore be conserved. This chapter presents an overview of Kenya's biodiversity; its importance and initiatives being undertaken for its conservation; and in detail, explores issues of climate change and biodiversity, concentrating on impacts of climate change

  5. Mass Extinction and the Disappearance of Unknown Mammal Species: Scenario and Perspectives of a Biodiversity Hotspot's Hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Rossano Mendes Pontes

    Full Text Available We aimed to determine the conservation status of medium- and large-sized mammals and evaluate the impact of 500 years of forest fragmentation on this group of animals in the Pernambuco Endemism Center, in the biogeographical zone of the Atlantic forest north of the São Francisco River in northeastern Brazil. Line transect surveys were performed in 21 forest fragments, resulting in a checklist of the mammals of the entire Pernambuco Endemism Center area. We ran a generalized linear model (Factorial ANCOVA to analyze to what extent the vegetation type, fragment area, isolation, sampling effort (as total kilometers walked, or higher-order interactions predicted (a richness and (b sighting rates. To determine if the distribution of the species within the forest fragments exhibited a nested pattern, we used the NODF metric. Subsequently, we performed a Binomial Logistic Regression to predict the probability of encountering each species according to fragment size. Out of 38 medium- and large-sized mammal species formerly occurring in the study area, only 53.8% (n = 21 were sighted. No fragment hosted the entire remaining mammal community, and only four species (19% occurred in very small fragments (73.3% of the remaining forest fragments, with a mean size of 2.8 ha. The mammalian community was highly simplified, with all large mammals being regionally extinct. Neither the species richness nor sighting rate was controlled by the vegetation type, the area of the forest fragments, isolation or any higher-order interaction. Although a highly significant nested subset pattern was detected, it was not related to the ranking of the area of forest fragments or isolation. The probability of the occurrence of a mammal species in a given forest patch varied unpredictably, and the probability of detecting larger species was even observed to decrease with increasing patch size. In an ongoing process of mass extinction, half of the studied mammals have gone extinct. The remaining medium-sized mammal community is highly simplified and homogenized. The persistence of these species in a forest patch is determined by their ability to adapt to a novel simplified diet, the efficient use of the surrounding matrix without being engulfed by the sink effect, and escaping hunting. Our results suggest that the 21st century medium-sized mammalian fauna of this region will comprise only four species unless strict conservation measures are implemented immediately and every forest fragment is effectively protected.

  6. Recovering biodiversity knowledge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijerink, G.W.; Smolders, H.; Sours, S.; Pou, S.

    2005-01-01

    Cambodian¿s civil wars have seriously affected the country¿s agro-biodiversity and the farmers¿ traditional knowledge in this field. The PEDIGREA project aims at conserving on-farm agro-biodiversity conservation and in Cambodia it focuses on vegetable diversity. It tries to link the preservation of

  7. In Defence of Biodiversity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Archer, Alfred; Burch Brown, Joanna

    2017-01-01

    The concept of biodiversity has played a central role within conservation biology over the last thirty years. Precisely how it should be understood, however, is a matter of ongoing debate. In this paper we defend what we call a classic multidimensional conception of biodiversity. We begin by

  8. The Importance of Rotational Crops for Biodiversity Conservation in Mediterranean Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiatante, Gianpasquale; Meriggi, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays we are seeing the largest biodiversity loss since the extinction of the dinosaurs. To conserve biodiversity it is essential to plan protected areas using a prioritization approach, which takes into account the current biodiversity value of the sites. Considering that in the Mediterranean Basin the agro-ecosystems are one of the most important parts of the landscape, the conservation of crops is essential to biodiversity conservation. In the framework of agro-ecosystem conservation, farmland birds play an important role because of their representativeness, and because of their steady decline in the last Century in Western Europe. The main aim of this research was to define if crop dominated landscapes could be useful for biodiversity conservation in a Mediterranean area in which the landscape was modified by humans in the last thousand years and was affected by the important biogeographical phenomenon of peninsula effect. To assess this, we identify the hotspots and the coldspots of bird diversity in southern Italy both during the winter and in the breeding season. In particular we used a scoring method, defining a biodiversity value for each cell of a 1-km grid superimposed on the study area, using data collected by fieldwork following a stratified random sampling design. This value was analysed by a multiple linear regression analysis and was predicted in the whole study area. Then we defined the hotspots and the coldspots of the study area as 15% of the cells with higher and lower value of biodiversity, respectively. Finally, we used GAP analysis to compare hotspot distribution with the current network of protected areas. This study showed that the winter hotspots of bird diversity were associated with marshes and water bodies, shrublands, and irrigated crops, whilst the breeding hotspots were associated with more natural areas (e.g. transitional wood/shrubs), such as open areas (natural grasslands, pastures and not irrigated crops). Moreover, the

  9. The Importance of Rotational Crops for Biodiversity Conservation in Mediterranean Areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiatante, Gianpasquale; Meriggi, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays we are seeing the largest biodiversity loss since the extinction of the dinosaurs. To conserve biodiversity it is essential to plan protected areas using a prioritization approach, which takes into account the current biodiversity value of the sites. Considering that in the Mediterranean Basin the agro-ecosystems are one of the most important parts of the landscape, the conservation of crops is essential to biodiversity conservation. In the framework of agro-ecosystem conservation, farmland birds play an important role because of their representativeness, and because of their steady decline in the last Century in Western Europe. The main aim of this research was to define if crop dominated landscapes could be useful for biodiversity conservation in a Mediterranean area in which the landscape was modified by humans in the last thousand years and was affected by the important biogeographical phenomenon of peninsula effect. To assess this, we identify the hotspots and the coldspots of bird diversity in southern Italy both during the winter and in the breeding season. In particular we used a scoring method, defining a biodiversity value for each cell of a 1-km grid superimposed on the study area, using data collected by fieldwork following a stratified random sampling design. This value was analysed by a multiple linear regression analysis and was predicted in the whole study area. Then we defined the hotspots and the coldspots of the study area as 15% of the cells with higher and lower value of biodiversity, respectively. Finally, we used GAP analysis to compare hotspot distribution with the current network of protected areas. This study showed that the winter hotspots of bird diversity were associated with marshes and water bodies, shrublands, and irrigated crops, whilst the breeding hotspots were associated with more natural areas (e.g. transitional wood/shrubs), such as open areas (natural grasslands, pastures and not irrigated crops). Moreover, the

  10. Next-Generation Invaders? Hotspots for Naturalised Sleeper Weeds in Australia under Future Climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger, Erin; Hughes, Lesley; Downey, Paul O.; Leishman, Michelle R.

    2013-01-01

    Naturalised, but not yet invasive plants, pose a nascent threat to biodiversity. As climate regimes continue to change, it is likely that a new suite of invaders will emerge from the established pool of naturalised plants. Pre-emptive management of locations that may be most suitable for a large number of potentially invasive plants will help to target monitoring, and is vital for effective control. We used species distribution models (SDM) and invasion-hotspot analysis to determine where in Australia suitable habitat may occur for 292 naturalised plants. SDMs were built in MaxEnt using both climate and soil variables for current baseline conditions. Modelled relationships were projected onto two Representative Concentration Pathways for future climates (RCP 4.5 and 8.5), based on seven global climate models, for two time periods (2035, 2065). Model outputs for each of the 292 species were then aggregated into single ‘hotspot’ maps at two scales: continental, and for each of Australia’s 37 ecoregions. Across Australia, areas in the south-east and south-west corners of the continent were identified as potential hotspots for naturalised plants under current and future climates. These regions provided suitable habitat for 288 and 239 species respectively under baseline climates. The areal extent of the continental hotspot was projected to decrease by 8.8% under climates for 2035, and by a further 5.2% by 2065. A similar pattern of hotspot contraction under future climates was seen for the majority of ecoregions examined. However, two ecoregions - Tasmanian temperate forests and Australian Alps montane grasslands - showed increases in the areal extent of hotspots of >45% under climate scenarios for 2065. The alpine ecoregion also had an increase in the number of naturalised plant species with abiotically suitable habitat under future climate scenarios, indicating that this area may be particularly vulnerable to future incursions by naturalised plants. PMID

  11. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: First record of the genus Tigidia Simon, 1892 (Araneae: Barychelidae from India with description of three new species from the Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Siliwal

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Prior to this study the genus Tigidia Simon, 1892 of the Brush-footed Spider family Barychelidae was represented by eight species endemic to Madagascar and Mauritius Islands. The first occurrence of Tigidia in India is reported here with the description of three new species from the Western Ghats, T. sahyadri sp. nov. from Uttara Kannada District, Karnataka; T. nilgiriensis sp. nov. from Kotagiri, Nilgiri District, Tamil Nadu and T. rutilofronis sp. nov. from Maruthamalai, Coimbatore District, Tamil Nadu. This genus is probably a Gondwana relict. Natural history information is provided for all the species.

  12. A contribution to the bryoflora of the Western Ghats in Karnataka State, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schwarz Uwe

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Based on fieldtrips of the authors in 2012, a list of species collected in a small area of the Western Ghats (Coorg District, state of Karnataka is presented. It includes 18 species of liverworts and hornworts as well as 76 species of mosses. 27 species of mosses are newly reported for the state of Karnataka, 6 species are new for Coorg province. Holomitrium javanicum Dozy & Molk. is reported as new to India. Campylopus sedgwickii Dix. described from Sri Lanka and so far only known from the type locality is a new synonym of C. recurvus Mitt. The list gives a rough inventory of the bryoflora in altitudes between 900 m and 1750 m and can be regarded as typical for the northern Western Ghats.

  13. Leaf Essential Oil Composition of Six Syzygium Species from the Western Ghats, South India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koranappallil B. Rameshkumar

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The Syzygium (Family: Myrtaceae species are well known for their aromatic nature. Though 45 Syzygium species are reported from the Western Ghats region of India, the volatile oil chemistry of most of these aromatic plants are uninvestigated. The present study reports the chemical constituents of the leaf essential oils of 6 Syzygium species, S. arnottianum Walp., S. caryophyllatum (L. Alston, S. hemisphericum (Wight Alston, S. laetum (Buch. Ham. Gandhi, S. lanceolatum (Lam. Wight & Arn. and S. zeylanicum (L. DC. var. zeylanicum, collected from the Western Ghats of Kerala. Sesquiterpenoids were the predominantcompounds in all theSyzygium species studied and -caryophyllene and caryophyllene oxide were present in all the oils except S. laetum. The open chain sesquiterpenoids (Z,E-α-farnesene and (E-nerolidol were characteristic of S. laetum while phenyl propanoids were exclusively present in S. lanceolatum.

  14. Evolutionary hotspots in the Mojave Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandergast, Amy G.; Inman, Richard D.; Barr, Kelly R.; Nussear, Kenneth E.; Esque, Todd C.; Hathaway, Stacie A.; Wood, Dustin A.; Medica, Philip A.; Breinholt, Jesse W.; Stephen, Catherine L.; Gottscho, Andrew D.; Marks, Sharyn B.; Jennings, W. Bryan; Fisher, Robert N.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic diversity within species provides the raw material for adaptation and evolution. Just as regions of high species diversity are conservation targets, identifying regions containing high genetic diversity and divergence within and among populations may be important to protect future evolutionary potential. When multiple co-distributed species show spatial overlap in high genetic diversity and divergence, these regions can be considered evolutionary hotspots. We mapped spatial population genetic structure for 17 animal species across the Mojave Desert, USA. We analyzed these in concurrence and located 10 regions of high genetic diversity, divergence or both among species. These were mainly concentrated along the western and southern boundaries where ecotones between mountain, grassland and desert habitat are prevalent, and along the Colorado River. We evaluated the extent to which these hotspots overlapped protected lands and utility-scale renewable energy development projects of the Bureau of Land Management. While 30–40% of the total hotspot area was categorized as protected, between 3–7% overlapped with proposed renewable energy project footprints, and up to 17% overlapped with project footprints combined with transmission corridors. Overlap of evolutionary hotspots with renewable energy development mainly occurred in 6 of the 10 identified hotspots. Resulting GIS-based maps can be incorporated into ongoing landscape planning efforts and highlight specific regions where further investigation of impacts to population persistence and genetic connectivity may be warranted.

  15. Modeling Resource Hotspots: Critical Linkages and Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daher, B.; Mohtar, R.; Pistikopoulos, E.; McCarl, B. A.; Yang, Y.

    2017-12-01

    Growing demands for interconnected resources emerge in the form of hotspots of varying characteristics. The business as usual allocation model cannot address the current, let alone anticipated, complex and highly interconnected resource challenges we face. A new paradigm for resource allocation must be adopted: one that identifies cross-sectoral synergies and, that moves away from silos to recognition of the nexus and integration of it. Doing so will result in new opportunities for business growth, economic development, and improved social well-being. Solutions and interventions must be multi-faceted; opportunities should be identified with holistic trade-offs in mind. No single solution fits all: different hotspots will require distinct interventions. Hotspots have varying resource constraints, stakeholders, goals and targets. The San Antonio region represents a complex resource hotspot with promising potential: its rapidly growing population, the Eagle Ford shale play, and the major agricultural activity there makes it a hotspot with many competing demands. Stakeholders need tools to allow them to knowledgeably address impending resource challenges. This study will identify contemporary WEF nexus questions and critical system interlinkages that will inform the modeling of the tightly interconnected resource systems and stresses using the San Antonio Region as a base; it will conceptualize a WEF nexus modeling framework, and develop assessment criteria to inform integrative planning and decision making.

  16. Flood risk assessment of land pollution hotspots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masi, Matteo; Arrighi, Chiara; Iannelli, Renato

    2017-04-01

    Among the risks caused by extreme events, the potential spread of pollutants stored in land hotspots due to floods is an aspect that has been rarely examined with a risk-based approach. In this contribution, an attempt to estimate pollution risks related to flood events of land pollution hotspots was carried out. Flood risk has been defined as the combination of river flood hazard, hotspots exposure and vulnerability to contamination of the area, i.e. the expected severity of the environmental impacts. The assessment was performed on a geographical basis, using geo-referenced open data, available from databases of land management institutions, authorities and agencies. The list of land pollution hotspots included landfills and other waste handling facilities (e.g., temporary storage, treatment and recycling sites), municipal wastewater treatment plants, liquid waste treatment facilities and contaminated sites. The assessment was carried out by combining geo-referenced data of pollution hotspots with flood hazard maps. We derived maps of land pollution risk based on geographical and geological properties and source characteristics available from environmental authorities. These included information about soil particle size, soil hydraulic conductivity, terrain slope, type of stored pollutants, the type of facility, capacity, size of the area, land use, etc. The analysis was carried out at catchment scale. The case study of the Arno river basin in Tuscany (central Italy) is presented.

  17. Species and acoustic diversity of bats in a palaeotropical wet evergreen forest in southern India

    OpenAIRE

    Raghuram, H; Jain, M; Balakrishnan, R

    2014-01-01

    The Western Ghats of India is among the top 25 biodiversity hotspots in the world. About 43% of the reported 117 bat species in India are found in this region, but few quantitative studies of bat echolocation calls and diversity have been carried out here thus far. A quantitative study of bat diversity was therefore conducted using standard techniques, including mist-netting, acoustical and roost surveys in the wet evergreen forests of Kudremukh National Park in the Western Ghats of Karnataka...

  18. Nuclear Abnormalities in Erythrocytes of Frogs From Wetlands and Croplands of Western Ghats Indicate Environmental Contaminations

    OpenAIRE

    Raghunath, Shreyas; Veerabhadrappa, Chethankumar Masaruru; Krishnamurthy, Sannanegunda Venkatarama Bhatta

    2017-01-01

    Anuran amphibians are the biological models to assess the influence of environmental contamination. We conducted nuclear abnormality assessment and micronuclei test in erythrocytes of frogs to identify an early influence of environmental contaminations. In Western Ghats of India, farmers use different agrochemicals and obviously, the amphibian habitat is contaminated with combinations of many residues. Many frog species use these agro-ecosystem for breeding and to complete early life stage. I...

  19. Water-borne hyphomycetes in tree canopies of Kaiga (Western Ghats), India

    OpenAIRE

    Naga M. Sudheep; Kandikere R. Sridhar

    2013-01-01

    The canopy samples such as trapped leaf litter, trapped sediment (during summer), stemflow and throughfall (during monsoon) from five common riparian tree species (Artocarpus heterophyllus, Cassia fistula, Ficus recemosa, Syzygium caryophyllatum and Xylia xylocarpa) in Kaiga forest stand of the Western Ghats of southwest India were evaluated for the occurrence of water-borne hyphomycetes. Partially decomposed trapped leaf litter was incubated in bubble chambers followed by filtration to asses...

  20. The impact of the Western Ghats on lightning activity on the western coast of India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamra, A. K.; Nair, A. A.

    2015-06-01

    The effect of the Western Ghats on the lightning activity across the west coast of India around the coastal metropolitan city of Mumbai during the 1998-2012 period is investigated using data from the Lightning Imaging Sensor (LIS) onboard the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. A land-sea contrast of an order of magnitude in the lightning activity is observed even in a small area across the western coast of India. The shape of a zone of high lightning activity formed almost parallel to the Western Ghats during the onset and withdrawal phases of monsoon, strongly suggests the effect of the Western Ghats in its formation. Seasonal variation of the lightning activity in this area and also in each of its four equal sectors (two each over the Arabian Sea and over land) is bi-annual with one peak each in the onset (May/June) and withdrawal months (September/October) of monsoon and a sharp dip to very low values during the monsoon months (July/August) of maximum seasonal rainfall. The lightning activity in each sector is found to increase over the 1998-2012 period. However, the increase in lightning activity over the sector containing Mumbai is found to be greater during the pre- and post-monsoon periods and smaller during the monsoon period as compared to an identical sector immediately south of it.

  1. Phytochemical investigation of Bidens biternata (Lour.) Merr. and Sheriff.--a nutrient-rich leafy vegetable from Western Ghats of India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukumaran, Pradeesh; Nair, Archana G; Chinmayee, Devi M; Mini, I; Sukumaran, Swapna T

    2012-07-01

    Bidens biternata, belonging to the family Asteraceae, is an erect annual herb, up to 1 cm in height, and a widespread weed of cultivated areas. This plant is common, particularly in the Western Ghats regions of Kerala state in India. It is used as a leafy vegetable by the Paniya and Kattunaayika tribes of Waynadu Districts in Kerala and also to cure hepatitis, cold, cough, dysentery, etc. The multiplication and utilization of this leafy vegetable will help to overcome the nutritional deficiency problem and also to maintain the biodiversity. For effective biochemical analysis, plant extract was taken using different solvents. Various phytochemicals like reducing sugar, glycosides, flavonoids, alkaloids, tannins, steroids, terpenoids, coumarins, saponins, anthraquinones, phlobatannins and iridoids were estimated. Different nutritional factors like total carbohydrates, total proteins, total reducing sugar, different amino acids, free fatty acids, crude fibre, lipids, total moisture content, vitamins, etc. were tested by standard estimation methods. Anti-nutritional factors like phytic acid, total phenol, tannic acid, etc., were also estimated. Micronutrients and different pigments were quantified. The present studies revealed that this wild leafy plant has numerous nutritional factors with a low level of anti-nutritional factors. Therefore, this nutritive herb with diverse health-promoting compounds can be effectively utilized to overcome the nutritional deficiency problem around the globe.

  2. The biodiversity from Bogota

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calvachi Zambrano, Byron

    2002-01-01

    It is about the flora biodiversity and fauna that it occupied the savannah of Bogota originally, about the flora and extinct fauna and of the flora and fauna that still persist in spite of the colonization

  3. Business and biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Rasmus Meyer; Lehmann, Martin; Christensen, Per

    - a challenge that needs to be shared between conservationists, green organisations, public authorities, as well as the private sector. A new wave of green initiatives has emerged within the culture of business and marketing. The reasons for why businesses should engage in environmental actions are many......Despite the overall importance of biodiversity, the quality measures of biodiversity show worrying figures. Numerous human impacts on nature impose serious hazard to its inherent diversity. This expansion of human activities leaves the battle against loss of biodiversity to be a great challenge......, but the effort has until now considered biodiversity actions relatively little, compared to other areas such as e.g. climate related actions. Nevertheless, the opportunity for businesses to meet their responsibilities and lift a share of the challenge is far from being just a romantic thought. Nor...

  4. Biodiversity and global change

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Solbrig, Otto Thomas; Emden, H. M. van; Oordt, P. G. W. J. van; Solbrig, Otto T

    1992-01-01

    The IUBS symposium "Biodiversity and Global Change" held during the 24th General Assembly, 1-6 September, 1991, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, represented the first attempt to address the issue of bio...

  5. Dimensions of biodiversity loss

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Palma, De Adriana; Kuhlmann, Michael; Bugter, Rob; Ferrier, Simon; Hoskins, Andrew J.; Potts, Simon G.; Roberts, Stuart P.M.; Schweiger, Oliver; Purvis, Andy

    2017-01-01

    Aim: Agricultural intensification and urbanization are important drivers of biodiversity change in Europe. Different aspects of bee community diversity vary in their sensitivity to these pressures, as well as independently influencing ecosystem service provision (pollination). To obtain a more

  6. Funding begets biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahrends, Antje; Burgess, Neil David; Gereau, Roy E.

    2011-01-01

    Aim Effective conservation of biodiversity relies on an unbiased knowledge of its distribution. Conservation priority assessments are typically based on the levels of species richness, endemism and threat. Areas identified as important receive the majority of conservation investments, often...... facilitating further research that results in more species discoveries. Here, we test whether there is circularity between funding and perceived biodiversity, which may reinforce the conservation status of areas already perceived to be important while other areas with less initial funding may remain overlooked......, and variances decomposed in partial regressions. Cross-correlations are used to assess whether perceived biodiversity drives funding or vice versa. Results Funding explained 65% of variation in perceived biodiversity patterns – six times more variation than accounted for by 34 candidate environmental factors...

  7. Integrating habitat status, human population pressure, and protection status into biodiversity conservation priority setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Hua; Singh, Ashbindu; Kant, S.; Zhu, Zhiliang; Waller, E.

    2005-01-01

    Priority setting is an essential component of biodiversity conservation. Existing methods to identify priority areas for conservation have focused almost entirely on biological factors. We suggest a new relative ranking method for identifying priority conservation areas that integrates both biological and social aspects. It is based on the following criteria: the habitat's status, human population pressure, human efforts to protect habitat, and number of endemic plant and vertebrate species. We used this method to rank 25 hotspots, 17 megadiverse countries, and the hotspots within each megadiverse country. We used consistent, comprehensive, georeferenced, and multiband data sets and analytical remote sensing and geographic information system tools to quantify habitat status, human population pressure, and protection status. The ranking suggests that the Philippines, Atlantic Forest, Mediterranean Basin, Caribbean Islands, Caucasus, and Indo-Burma are the hottest hotspots and that China, the Philippines, and India are the hottest megadiverse countries. The great variation in terms of habitat, protected areas, and population pressure among the hotspots, the megadiverse countries, and the hotspots within the same country suggests the need for hotspot- and country-specific conservation policies.

  8. Vietnam, a Hotspot for Chromosomal Diversity and Cryptic Species in Black Flies (Diptera: Simuliidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adler, Peter H; Takaoka, Hiroyuki; Sofian-Azirun, Mohd; Low, Van Lun; Ya'cob, Zubaidah; Chen, Chee Dhang; Lau, Koon Weng; Pham, Xuan Da

    2016-01-01

    The increasing attention on Vietnam as a biodiversity hotspot prompted an investigation of the potential for cryptic diversity in black flies, a group well known elsewhere for its high frequency of isomorphic species. We analyzed the banding structure of the larval polytene chromosomes in the Simulium tuberosum species group to probe for diversity beyond the morphological level. Among 272 larvae, 88 different chromosomal rearrangements, primarily paracentric inversions, were discovered in addition to 25 already known in the basic sequences of the group in Asia. Chromosomal diversity in Vietnam far exceeds that known for the group in Thailand, with only about 5% of the rearrangements shared between the two countries. Fifteen cytoforms and nine morphoforms were revealed among six nominal species in Vietnam. Chromosomal evidence, combined with available molecular and morphological evidence, conservatively suggests that at least five of the cytoforms are valid species, two of which require formal names. The total chromosomal rearrangements and species (15) now known from the group in Vietnam far exceed those of any other area of comparable size in the world, supporting the country's status as a biodiversity hotspot. Phylogenetic inference based on uniquely shared, derived chromosomal rearrangements supports the clustering of cytoforms into two primary lineages, the Simulium tani complex and the Southeast Asian Simulium tuberosum subgroup. Some of these taxa could be threatened by habitat destruction, given their restricted geographical distributions and the expanding human population of Vietnam.

  9. Vietnam, a Hotspot for Chromosomal Diversity and Cryptic Species in Black Flies (Diptera: Simuliidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takaoka, Hiroyuki; Sofian-Azirun, Mohd; Low, Van Lun; Ya’cob, Zubaidah; Chen, Chee Dhang; Lau, Koon Weng; Pham, Xuan Da

    2016-01-01

    The increasing attention on Vietnam as a biodiversity hotspot prompted an investigation of the potential for cryptic diversity in black flies, a group well known elsewhere for its high frequency of isomorphic species. We analyzed the banding structure of the larval polytene chromosomes in the Simulium tuberosum species group to probe for diversity beyond the morphological level. Among 272 larvae, 88 different chromosomal rearrangements, primarily paracentric inversions, were discovered in addition to 25 already known in the basic sequences of the group in Asia. Chromosomal diversity in Vietnam far exceeds that known for the group in Thailand, with only about 5% of the rearrangements shared between the two countries. Fifteen cytoforms and nine morphoforms were revealed among six nominal species in Vietnam. Chromosomal evidence, combined with available molecular and morphological evidence, conservatively suggests that at least five of the cytoforms are valid species, two of which require formal names. The total chromosomal rearrangements and species (15) now known from the group in Vietnam far exceed those of any other area of comparable size in the world, supporting the country’s status as a biodiversity hotspot. Phylogenetic inference based on uniquely shared, derived chromosomal rearrangements supports the clustering of cytoforms into two primary lineages, the Simulium tani complex and the Southeast Asian Simulium tuberosum subgroup. Some of these taxa could be threatened by habitat destruction, given their restricted geographical distributions and the expanding human population of Vietnam. PMID:27695048

  10. Eliminating "Hotspots" in Digital Image Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salomon, P. M.

    1984-01-01

    Signals from defective picture elements rejected. Image processing program for use with charge-coupled device (CCD) or other mosaic imager augmented with algorithm that compensates for common type of electronic defect. Algorithm prevents false interpretation of "hotspots". Used for robotics, image enhancement, image analysis and digital television.

  11. Forecasting Hotspots-A Predictive Analytics Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciejewski, R; Hafen, R; Rudolph, S; Larew, S G; Mitchell, M A; Cleveland, W S; Ebert, D S

    2011-04-01

    Current visual analytics systems provide users with the means to explore trends in their data. Linked views and interactive displays provide insight into correlations among people, events, and places in space and time. Analysts search for events of interest through statistical tools linked to visual displays, drill down into the data, and form hypotheses based upon the available information. However, current systems stop short of predicting events. In spatiotemporal data, analysts are searching for regions of space and time with unusually high incidences of events (hotspots). In the cases where hotspots are found, analysts would like to predict how these regions may grow in order to plan resource allocation and preventative measures. Furthermore, analysts would also like to predict where future hotspots may occur. To facilitate such forecasting, we have created a predictive visual analytics toolkit that provides analysts with linked spatiotemporal and statistical analytic views. Our system models spatiotemporal events through the combination of kernel density estimation for event distribution and seasonal trend decomposition by loess smoothing for temporal predictions. We provide analysts with estimates of error in our modeling, along with spatial and temporal alerts to indicate the occurrence of statistically significant hotspots. Spatial data are distributed based on a modeling of previous event locations, thereby maintaining a temporal coherence with past events. Such tools allow analysts to perform real-time hypothesis testing, plan intervention strategies, and allocate resources to correspond to perceived threats.

  12. The unusual Samoan hotspot: A "hotspot highway" juxtaposed with a trench

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, M. G.; Konter, J. G.; Koppers, A. A.

    2011-12-01

    Oceanic hotspots are fed by (relatively) stationary, upwelling mantle plumes that melt beneath mobile tectonic plates. This mechanism results in the generation of a linear chain of volcanoes exhibiting a clear age progression: the islands and seamounts should be increasingly older with increasing distance from the inferred location of the mantle plume. Located in the southwest Pacific, the Cook-Austral volcanic islands and seamounts were long thought to lack a clear age progression, and it has been argued that the Cook-Austral volcanic chain is an example of a hotspot not fed by a mantle plume. However, work by Chauvel et al (1997) showed that the Cook-Austral volcanoes have been generated by three distinct, co-linear mantle plumes spaced by ~1000 km, resulting in 3 overlapping hotspot tracks. Critically, the volcanoes generated by each hotspot exhibit a clear age progression that emerges from its respective plume. Using plate motion models, the reconstructed tracks of the three Cook-Austral hotspots backtrack through the region of the Pacific plate now occupied by the Samoan hotspot between 10 and 40 Ma (Konter et al., 2008). Owing to the unusual number of hotspots (Samoa is the fourth) that have been hosted in the region, we refer to this corridor of the Pacific plate as the "hotspot highway." The Samoan hotspot is burning through and thus crosscutting the trails of the older Cook-Austral hotspots. Consistent with this hypothesis, Jackson et al. (2010) reported volcanic features from the Cook-Austral hotspots in the Samoan region, including three seamounts and one atoll with geochemical affinities to the Cook-Austral hotspot. The Pacific lithosphere was likely "preconditioned" (metasomatized) by the three Cook-Australs hotspots before the arrival of the Samoan plume into the region, yet geochemical signatures associated with the Cook-Austral hotspot pedigrees are not evident in Samoan shield lavas. However, Samoan rejuvenated lavas exhibit a clear EMI (enriched

  13. HOTSPOT Health Physics codes for the PC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Homann, S.G.

    1994-03-01

    The HOTSPOT Health Physics codes were created to provide Health Physics personnel with a fast, field-portable calculation tool for evaluating accidents involving radioactive materials. HOTSPOT codes are a first-order approximation of the radiation effects associated with the atmospheric release of radioactive materials. HOTSPOT programs are reasonably accurate for a timely initial assessment. More importantly, HOTSPOT codes produce a consistent output for the same input assumptions and minimize the probability of errors associated with reading a graph incorrectly or scaling a universal nomogram during an emergency. The HOTSPOT codes are designed for short-term (less than 24 hours) release durations. Users requiring radiological release consequences for release scenarios over a longer time period, e.g., annual windrose data, are directed to such long-term models as CAPP88-PC (Parks, 1992). Users requiring more sophisticated modeling capabilities, e.g., complex terrain; multi-location real-time wind field data; etc., are directed to such capabilities as the Department of Energy's ARAC computer codes (Sullivan, 1993). Four general programs -- Plume, Explosion, Fire, and Resuspension -- calculate a downwind assessment following the release of radioactive material resulting from a continuous or puff release, explosive release, fuel fire, or an area contamination event. Other programs deal with the release of plutonium, uranium, and tritium to expedite an initial assessment of accidents involving nuclear weapons. Additional programs estimate the dose commitment from the inhalation of any one of the radionuclides listed in the database of radionuclides; calibrate a radiation survey instrument for ground-survey measurements; and screen plutonium uptake in the lung (see FIDLER Calibration and LUNG Screening sections)

  14. HOTSPOT Health Physics codes for the PC

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Homann, S.G.

    1994-03-01

    The HOTSPOT Health Physics codes were created to provide Health Physics personnel with a fast, field-portable calculation tool for evaluating accidents involving radioactive materials. HOTSPOT codes are a first-order approximation of the radiation effects associated with the atmospheric release of radioactive materials. HOTSPOT programs are reasonably accurate for a timely initial assessment. More importantly, HOTSPOT codes produce a consistent output for the same input assumptions and minimize the probability of errors associated with reading a graph incorrectly or scaling a universal nomogram during an emergency. The HOTSPOT codes are designed for short-term (less than 24 hours) release durations. Users requiring radiological release consequences for release scenarios over a longer time period, e.g., annual windrose data, are directed to such long-term models as CAPP88-PC (Parks, 1992). Users requiring more sophisticated modeling capabilities, e.g., complex terrain; multi-location real-time wind field data; etc., are directed to such capabilities as the Department of Energy`s ARAC computer codes (Sullivan, 1993). Four general programs -- Plume, Explosion, Fire, and Resuspension -- calculate a downwind assessment following the release of radioactive material resulting from a continuous or puff release, explosive release, fuel fire, or an area contamination event. Other programs deal with the release of plutonium, uranium, and tritium to expedite an initial assessment of accidents involving nuclear weapons. Additional programs estimate the dose commitment from the inhalation of any one of the radionuclides listed in the database of radionuclides; calibrate a radiation survey instrument for ground-survey measurements; and screen plutonium uptake in the lung (see FIDLER Calibration and LUNG Screening sections).

  15. Marine biodiversity in Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diaz, Juan Manuel

    2002-01-01

    One decade ago, the seas and oceans were considered biologically less diverse that the terrestrial environment. Now it is known that it is on the contrary; 33 of the 34 categories of animals (phylum), they are represented in the sea, compared with those solely 15 that exist in earth. The investigation about the diversity of life in the sea has been relatively scorned, but there are big benefits that we can wait if this is protected. The captures of fish depend on it; the species captured by the fisheries are sustained of the biodiversity of their trophic chains and habitats. The marine species are probably the biggest reservoir of chemical substances that can be used in pharmaceutical products. The genetic material of some species can be useful in biotechnical applications. The paper treats topics like the current state of the knowledge in marine biodiversity and it is done a diagnostic of the marine biodiversity in Colombia

  16. Shade tree diversity enhances coffee production and quality in agroforestry systems in the Western Ghats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nesper, Maike; Kueffer, Christoph; Krishnan, Smitha; Kushalappa, Cheppudira G.; Ghazoul, Jaboury

    2017-01-01

    Intensification of multispecies coffee agroforests reduces shade tree diversity with implications for tropical biodiversity. We investigated how tree biodiversity and its effects on coffee production and quality changes along a gradient of intensification (from diverse multispecies to Grevillea

  17. The biodiversity cost of carbon sequestration in tropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abreu, Rodolfo C R; Hoffmann, William A; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L; Pilon, Natashi A; Rossatto, Davi R; Durigan, Giselda

    2017-08-01

    Tropical savannas have been increasingly viewed as an opportunity for carbon sequestration through fire suppression and afforestation, but insufficient attention has been given to the consequences for biodiversity. To evaluate the biodiversity costs of increasing carbon sequestration, we quantified changes in ecosystem carbon stocks and the associated changes in communities of plants and ants resulting from fire suppression in savannas of the Brazilian Cerrado, a global biodiversity hotspot. Fire suppression resulted in increased carbon stocks of 1.2 Mg ha -1 year -1 since 1986 but was associated with acute species loss. In sites fully encroached by forest, plant species richness declined by 27%, and ant richness declined by 35%. Richness of savanna specialists, the species most at risk of local extinction due to forest encroachment, declined by 67% for plants and 86% for ants. This loss highlights the important role of fire in maintaining biodiversity in tropical savannas, a role that is not reflected in current policies of fire suppression throughout the Brazilian Cerrado. In tropical grasslands and savannas throughout the tropics, carbon mitigation programs that promote forest cover cannot be assumed to provide net benefits for conservation.

  18. Electron microprobe dating of monazite from spinel granulite in the Eastern Ghats Belt, India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rao, A.T.; Fonarev, V.I.; Konilov, A.N.; Romanenko, M.

    1998-01-01

    Electron microprobe dating method is same as chemical aging method of U-Th minerals used in geochronology. The Th-U-Pb concentrations obtained from a single electron probe analysis allow calculation of geologically meaningful age. Based on this method monazite from spinel granulite of Visakhapatnam in the Eastern Ghats Belt (EGB) gave ∼ 1,000 Ma, corroborating the late Proterozoic metamorphism and charnockite emplacement, established in parts of the EGB and Antarctica. Microgeochronology of commonly occurring accessory mineral such as monazite in granulite variants is recommended for quick reconnaissance correlation in Gondwanian fragments in east Gondwanaland. (author)

  19. Mesoscale patterns in the floristic composition of forests in the central Western Ghats of Karnataka, India

    OpenAIRE

    Ramesh, B. R.; Venugopal, P. D.; Pélissier, Raphaël; Patil, S. V.; Swaminath, M. H.; Couteron, Pierre

    2010-01-01

    We describe the mesoscale floristic patterns in the central Western Ghats of Karnataka, India, through combined analysis of woody species abundance and stand structure data from a network of ninety-six 1-ha sampling plots spread across 22,000 km2. A total of 61,906 individuals (>= 10 cm gbh) comprising 400 plant species from 254 genera and 75 families were recorded. Euphorbiaceae, Rubiaceae, Lauraceae and Moraceae families constituted 23.5 percent of the total number of species encountered. T...

  20. The emergence of motives in liminal hotspots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nissen, Morten; Sørensen, Kathrine Solgaard

    2017-01-01

    be (probably to no avail) dismissed for not taking account of the deep theoretical problems. This article suggests instead to rearticulate them with the conceptual repertoire of liminal hotspots, which directs attention to the emergent nature of activities and collectives, and thus motives. This is done...... as part of an ongoing collaboration with counselors who experiment with different ways of helping young drug users without taking motivation as premise, in the sense of a prerequisite, for interventions. Data from recorded counseling sessions are analyzed and rearticulated, first in terms of the classical...... motivation–resistance contradiction; then through pragmatic approaches in counseling, i.e., the prevalent cognitive-client-centered form and the “solution-focused brief therapy” approach—and finally as motives emergent in liminal hotspots....

  1. An underappreciated hotspot of antibiotic resistance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Qing-Lin; Li, Hu; Zhou, Xin-Yuan

    2017-01-01

    Landfills are so far the most common practice for the disposals of municipal solid waste (MSW) worldwide. Since MSW landfill receives miscellaneous wastes, including unused/expired antibiotics and bioactive wastes, it gradually becomes a huge potential bioreactor for breeding antibiotic resistance...... be the potential hosts of ARGs. These findings provide evidence that groundwater near MSW landfill is an underappreciated hotspot of antibiotic resistance and contribute to the spread of ARGs via the flowing contaminated groundwater....

  2. Forecasting hotspots using predictive visual analytics approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciejewski, Ross; Hafen, Ryan; Rudolph, Stephen; Cleveland, William; Ebert, David

    2014-12-30

    A method for forecasting hotspots is provided. The method may include the steps of receiving input data at an input of the computational device, generating a temporal prediction based on the input data, generating a geospatial prediction based on the input data, and generating output data based on the time series and geospatial predictions. The output data may be configured to display at least one user interface at an output of the computational device.

  3. Biodiversity and productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    M.R. Willig

    2011-01-01

    Researchers predict that human activities especially landscape modification and climate change will have a considerable impact on the distribution and abundance of species at local, regional, and global scales in the 21st century ( 1, 2). This is a concern for a number of reasons, including the potential loss of goods and services that biodiversity provides to people...

  4. Biodiversity in Benthic Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Friberg, Nikolai; Carl, J. D.

    Foreword: This proceeding is based on a set of papers presented at the second Nordic Benthological Meeting held in Silkeborg, November 13-14, 1997. The main theme of the meeting was biodiversity in benthic ecology and the majority of contributions touch on this subject. In addition, the proceeding...

  5. When Leeches reveal Biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schnell, Ida Bærholm

    to provide information about vertebrate biodiversity. This thesis covers the development of a monitoring method based on iDNA extracted from terrestrial haematophagous leeches, a continuation of the work presented in Schnell et al., 2012. The chapters investigate and/or discuss different subjects regarding...

  6. Caribbean landscapes and their biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    A. E. Lugo; E. H. Helmer; E. Santiago Valentín

    2012-01-01

    Both the biodiversity and the landscapes of the Caribbean have been greatly modified as a consequence of human activity. In this essay we provide an overview of the natural landscapes and biodiversity of the Caribbean and discuss how human activity has affected both. Our Caribbean geographic focus is on the insular Caribbean and the biodiversity focus is on the flora,...

  7. Biodiversity and the lexicon zoo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    B.G. Marcot

    2007-01-01

    Ecologists and natural resource managers struggle to define and relate biodiversity, biocomplexity, ecological integrity, ecosystem services, and related concepts; to describe effects of disturbance dynamics on biodiversity; and to understand how biodiversity relates to resilience, resistance, and stability of ecosystems and sustainability of resource conditions. To...

  8. Forecasting the future of biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fitzpatrick, M. C.; Sanders, Nate; Ferrier, Simon

    2011-01-01

    , but their application to forecasting climate change impacts on biodiversity has been limited. Here we compare forecasts of changes in patterns of ant biodiversity in North America derived from ensembles of single-species models to those from a multi-species modeling approach, Generalized Dissimilarity Modeling (GDM...... climate change impacts on biodiversity....

  9. HOTSPOT: The Snake River Scientifi c Drilling Project— Tracking the Yellowstone Hotspot Through Space and Time

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas F. Williams

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available The project “HOTSPOT: Scientifi c Drilling of the Snake River Plain” held its inaugural workshop in Twin Falls, Idaho, U.S.A. on 18–21 May 2006. This inter-disciplinary workshop, sponsored by the International Continental Scientifi c Drilling Program (ICDP, explored the major scientifi c and logistical issues central to a transect of boreholes along the hotspot track and addressing the geochemical evolution of continental lithosphere in response to interaction with deepseated mantle hotspots or plumes. A series of four to six bore holes is envisioned, each about 1.5–2.0 km deep and located along the axis of the Snake River Plain. The holes will specific ally target the origin and evolution of hotspot-related volcanism in space and time. To accomplish scientific and logistical planning, sixty scientists from six countries attended the workshop.

  10. Pan-African U-Pb zircon age from apatite-magnetite veins of eastern ghats granulite belt, India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kovach, V.P.; Salnikova, E.B.; Kotov, A.B.; Yakovleva, S.Z.; Rao, A.T.

    1997-01-01

    206 Pb/ 238 U ages of zircon correspond to 502±3 Ma and 207 Pb/ 206 Pb ages are equal to 508±14 Ma. U-Pb isotopic study of the Kasipatnam zircon has led to the recognition of pan-African thermal event in the eastern ghats granulite belt, India. (author)

  11. Journal of Biosciences | Indian Academy of Sciences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    It is endemic to the biodiversity hotspot of the southern Western Ghats of India and, besides ants, harbours many endemic invertebrate taxa, such as bees that pollinate it as well as arboreal earthworms, within swollen hollow stem internodes called domatia. Using inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers, three ...

  12. Genetic and clonal diversity of the endemic ant-plant Humboldtia ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    It is endemic to the biodiversity hotspot of the southern Western Ghats of India and, besides ants, harbours many endemic invertebrate taxa, such as bees that pollinate it as well as arboreal earthworms, within swollen hollow stem internodes called domatia. Using inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers, three ...

  13. Tree species diversity in the Eastern Ghats of northern Andhra Pradesh, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Tarakeswara Naidu

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study was conducted to analyze tree species diversity in the tropical forests of the Eastern Ghats of northern Andhra Pradesh, India.  A total of 270 species of trees (≥15cm girth at breast height pertaining to 177 genera belonging to 55 families were recorded.  Among the 270 species, 141 species were observed to be common, 78 were occasional and 51 species were rare in the study area.  Fabaceae was the dominant family with 33 species followed by Rubiaceae with 15 species and Malvaceae, Moraceae and Phyllanthaceae with 13 species each.  The genera with the highest number of species include Ficus (12 species, Diospyros (8 species, Albizia and Grewia (6 species each, Acacia and Bauhinia (5 species each.  Forty-five percent of the species were indigenous. This illustrates the diversity of the tree species in the studied area of the Eastern Ghats and also emphasizes the need for their conservation. 

  14. Taxonomic Diversity of Lianas in Tropical Forests of Northern Eastern Ghats of Andhra Pradesh, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maradana TARAKESWARA NAIDU

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Lianas are important in forest ecosystem and strongly influence the forest dynamics and diversity. Lianas are common in the tropical moist deciduous and rain forests, which are competing with other forest trees. Little information is known on the habitat specialization in tropical lianas diversity and the root causes for variation among forests in liana species composition. A total of 170 liana species (≥ 1.5 cm girth at breast height representing 109 genera and 43 families were reported in 5×5 m quadrate samples along with their climbing modes in the tropical forests of northern Eastern Ghats of Andhra Pradesh, India. A total of 210 grids were sampled in study area and reported that Convolvulaceae was the dominant family with 23 species followed by Papilionaceae, 22 species and Asclepiadaceae, 19 species and Ipomoea was the largest genera. Woody lianas were dominated by 128 species and these are classified into six climbing modes consisting in stem climbers (53.5% that were the most predominant followed by stragglersunarmed (14.7%, stragglers armed and tendril climbers (13.5% each, root climbers (2.9% and hook climbers (1.8%. The most dominant liana species in the northern Eastern Ghats were Acacia sinuata and Bauhinia vahlii. The results of this investigation suggests that better management and protection is an important for in situ conservation of liana diversity and involving local people is emphasized.

  15. Biochemical composition of two giant pill-millipedes of the Western Ghats of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ambarish Cheviri N.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Many invertebrates have an unexpected nutraceutical potential and are of nutritional or ethnomedicinal significance to many tribals throughout the world. The giant pill-millipedes of the genus Arthrosphaera are traditionally used as natural medicines by tribals in the Western Ghats of India. In this study, two species of pill-millipedes (Arthrosphaera fumosa and A. magna were subjected to proximate and biochemical analysis to ascertain their nutritional potential. Bodies of A. fumosa and A. magna (after removal of their intestines had a low protein content (8-15% and high quantity of carbohydrates (40-41%. They were rich in many essential elements, especially in calcium. The essential amino acids of pillmillipedes were in high quantities. The level of glycine was the highest, followed by lysine and serine. The fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs of males and females consist of high quantities of unsaturated fatty acids. The mono-unsaturated fatty acids were more abundant than poly-unsaturated fatty acids. Palmitic and oleic acids were dominant saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, respectively. The study has revealed for the first time that pill-millipedes of the Western Ghats of India constitute a good source of essential minerals, essential fatty acids, and essential amino acids. Being valuable contributors of organic manure by processing recalcitrant plant lignocellulosic wastes, pill-millipedes become part and parcel of organic farming as well as future nutraceutical sources.

  16. A review of biodiversity-related issues and challenges in megadiverse Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina von Rintelen

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Indonesia is one of the ten member states of the economically and politically diverse regional organization of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN. Southeast Asia comprises four of the 25 global biodiversity hotspots, three of the 17 global megadiverse countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines and the most diverse coral reefs in the world. All member states are Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD. We discuss ASEAN-wide joint activities on nature conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity that do not stop at national borders. The Indonesian archipelago comprises two of the world’s biodiversity hotspots (areas with a high degree of endemic species that are highly threatened by loss of habitats: Its insular character and complex geological history led to the evolution of a megadiverse fauna and flora on the global scale. The importance of biodiversity, e.g., in traditional medicine and agriculture, is deep-rooted in Indonesian society. Modern biodiversity pathways include new fields of application in technology, pharmacy and economy along with environmental policies. This development occurred not only in Indonesia but also in other biodiversity-rich tropical countries. This review summarizes and discusses the unique biodiversity of Indonesia from different angles (science, society, environmental policy, and bioeconomy and brings it into context within the ASEAN region. The preconditions of each member state for biodiversity-related activities are rather diverse. Much was done to improve the conditions for biodiversity research and use in several countries, primarily in those with a promising economic development. However, ASEAN as a whole still has further potential for more joint initiatives. Especially Indonesia has the highest biodiversity potential within the ASEAN and beyond, but likewise the highest risk of biodiversity loss. We conclude that Indonesia has not taken full advantage of this

  17. Fish ladders: safe fish passage or hotspot for predation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angelo Antonio Agostinho

    Full Text Available Fish ladders are a strategy for conserving biodiversity, as they can provide connectivity between fragmented habitats and reduce predation on shoals that accumulate immediately below dams. Although the impact of predation downstream of reservoirs has been investigated, especially in juvenile salmonids during their downstream movements, nothing is known about predation on Neotropical fish in the attraction and containment areas commonly found in translocation facilities. This study analysed predation in a fish passage system at the Lajeado Dam on the Tocantins River in Brazil. The abundance, distribution, and the permanence (time spent of large predatory fish along the ladder, the injuries imposed by piranhas during passage and the presence of other vertebrate predators were investigated. From December 2002 to October 2003, sampling was conducted in four regions (downstream, along the ladder, in the forebay, and upstream of the reservoir using gillnets, cast nets and counts or visual observations. The captured fish were tagged with thread and beads, and any mutilations were registered. Fish, birds and dolphins were the main predator groups observed, with a predominance of the first two groups. The entrance to the ladder, in the downstream region, was the area with the highest number of large predators and was the only region with relevant non-fish vertebrates. The main predatory fish species were Rhaphiodon vulpinus, Hydrolycus armatus, and Serrasalmus rhombeus. Tagged individuals were detected predating along the ladder for up to 90 days. Mutilations caused by Serrasalmus attacks were noted in 36% of species and 4% of individuals at the top of the ladder. Our results suggested that the high density of fish in the restricted ladder environment, which is associated with injuries suffered along the ladder course and the presence of multiple predator groups with different predation strategies, transformed the fish corridor into a hotspot for

  18. Biometric parameters of the Redline torpedo fish Puntius denisonii Day 1865, an endemic barb in the Western Ghats Hotspots of Southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sajan Sajeevan

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Studies on the biometric parameters of a species to have an important role in its population or stock management and conservation. Present study investigated the morphometric, meristic, length-weight relation (LWRs, length-length relation (LLRs and growth status (K and Kn of the Redline torpedo barb, P. denisonii collected during August 2012 to July 2013 from river Valapattanam, Kerala. The length-weight relationship was established for monthly to differentiate growth variation and also separately calculated for males, females pooled and indeterminate. Length-length relationship, morphometric and meristic characteristics were also represented by the equation: Y = a + bX. The length-weight relations established for males was: log W = -2.207 + 3.148 log L; for females: log W = -2.360 + 3.316 log L; for indeterminate: log W = -2.176 + 3.171 log L and for pooled was: log W = -2.076 + 3.030 log L.  The regression coefficients between pooled, indeterminate, males and females of P. denisonii did not show any significant variation from isometric growth (p<0.05. All morphological characters were highly correlated with total length and correlation coefficient (r was highest for standard length (0.9889 and pre anal length (0.9904 and lowest for pelvic fin length (0.6150. Based on the study fin formula can be written as D 2-9, P 17, V 9, A 1-6 and C 22-24.

  19. Is the "Centro de Endemismo Pernambuco" a biodiversity hotspot for orchid bees?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemésio, A; Santos Junior, J E

    2014-08-01

    The orchid-bee faunas (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Euglossina) of the three largest forest remnants in the "Centro de Endemismo Pernambuco", northeastern Brazil, namely Estação Ecológica de Murici (ESEC Murici), RPPN Frei Caneca, and a forest preserve belonging to Usina Serra Grande, in the states of Alagoas and Pernambuco, were surveyed using seventeen different scents as baits to attract orchid-bee males. Eight sites were established in the three preserves, where samplings were carried out using two protocols: insect netting and bait trapping. We collected 3,479 orchid-bee males belonging to 29 species during 160 hours in early October, 2012. Seven species were collected in the "Centro de Endemismo Pernambuco" for the first time. Richness proved to be one of the highest of the entire Atlantic Forest domain, and diversity in some sites, especially at ESEC Murici, revealed to be one of the highest in the Neotropics. Eulaema felipei Nemésio, 2010, a species previously recorded only at ESEC Murici, was found in no other preserve in the region and its conservation status is discussed.

  20. Resource pulses in desert river habitats: productivity-biodiversity hotspots, or mirages?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Free, Carissa L; Baxter, Greg S; Dickman, Christopher R; Leung, Luke K P

    2013-01-01

    Resource pulses in the world's hot deserts are driven largely by rainfall and are highly variable in both time and space. However, run-on areas and drainage lines in arid regions receive more water more often than adjacent habitats, and frequently sustain relatively high levels of primary productivity. These landscape features therefore may support higher biotic diversity than other habitats, and potentially act as refuges for desert vertebrates and other biota during droughts. We used the ephemeral Field River in the Simpson Desert, central Australia, as a case study to quantify how resources and habitat characteristics vary spatially and temporally along the riparian corridor. Levels of moisture and nutrients were greater in the clay-dominated soils of the riverine corridor than in the surrounding sand dunes, as were cover values of trees, annual grasses, other annual plants and litter; these resources and habitat features were also greater near the main catchment area than in the distal reaches where the river channel runs out into extensive dune fields. These observations confirm that the riverine corridor is more productive than the surrounding desert, and support the idea that it may act as a refuge or as a channel for the ingress of peri-desert species. However, the work also demonstrates that species diversity of invertebrates and plants is not higher within the river corridor; rather, it is driven by rainfall and the accompanying increase in annual plants following a rain event. Further research is required to identify the biota that depend upon these resource pulses.

  1. Resource pulses in desert river habitats: productivity-biodiversity hotspots, or mirages?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carissa L Free

    Full Text Available Resource pulses in the world's hot deserts are driven largely by rainfall and are highly variable in both time and space. However, run-on areas and drainage lines in arid regions receive more water more often than adjacent habitats, and frequently sustain relatively high levels of primary productivity. These landscape features therefore may support higher biotic diversity than other habitats, and potentially act as refuges for desert vertebrates and other biota during droughts. We used the ephemeral Field River in the Simpson Desert, central Australia, as a case study to quantify how resources and habitat characteristics vary spatially and temporally along the riparian corridor. Levels of moisture and nutrients were greater in the clay-dominated soils of the riverine corridor than in the surrounding sand dunes, as were cover values of trees, annual grasses, other annual plants and litter; these resources and habitat features were also greater near the main catchment area than in the distal reaches where the river channel runs out into extensive dune fields. These observations confirm that the riverine corridor is more productive than the surrounding desert, and support the idea that it may act as a refuge or as a channel for the ingress of peri-desert species. However, the work also demonstrates that species diversity of invertebrates and plants is not higher within the river corridor; rather, it is driven by rainfall and the accompanying increase in annual plants following a rain event. Further research is required to identify the biota that depend upon these resource pulses.

  2. Secondary sympatry caused by range expansion informs on the dynamics of microendemism in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romain Nattier

    Full Text Available Islands are bounded areas where high endemism is explained either by allopatric speciation through the fragmentation of the limited amount of space available, or by sympatric speciation and accumulation of daughter species. Most empirical evidence point out the dominant action of allopatric speciation. We evaluate this general view by looking at a case study where sympatric speciation is suspected. We analyse the mode, tempo and geography of speciation in Agnotecous, a cricket genus endemic to New Caledonia showing a generalized pattern of sympatry between species making sympatric speciation plausible. We obtained five mitochondrial and five nuclear markers (6.8 kb from 37 taxa corresponding to 17 of the 21 known extant species of Agnotecous, and including several localities per species, and we conducted phylogenetic and dating analyses. Our results suggest that the diversification of Agnotecous occurred mostly through allopatric speciation in the last 10 Myr. Highly microendemic species are the most recent ones (<2 Myr and current sympatry is due to secondary range expansion after allopatric speciation. Species distribution should then be viewed as a highly dynamic process and extreme microendemism only as a temporary situation. We discuss these results considering the influence of climatic changes combined with intricate soil diversity and mountain topography. A complex interplay between these factors could have permitted repeated speciation events and range expansion.

  3. ​Reducing malnutrition in India's agri-biodiversity hotspots | Page 2 ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The challenge. Many of India's poor live in rural areas that are heavily dependent on agriculture. Local crops have a rich heritage of genetic diversity, but this diversity is often threatened by government policies that promote rice and wheat cultivation.This results in a disconnect between the high potential of the agricultural ...

  4. Benefits of wildlife consumption to child nutrition in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golden, Christopher D; Fernald, Lia C H; Brashares, Justin S; Rasolofoniaina, B J Rodolph; Kremen, Claire

    2011-12-06

    Terrestrial wildlife is the primary source of meat for hundreds of millions of people throughout the developing world. Despite widespread human reliance on wildlife for food, the impact of wildlife depletion on human health remains poorly understood. Here we studied a prospective longitudinal cohort of 77 preadolescent children (under 12 y of age) in rural northeastern Madagascar and show that consuming more wildlife was associated with significantly higher hemoglobin concentrations. Our empirical models demonstrate that removing access to wildlife would induce a 29% increase in the numbers of children suffering from anemia and a tripling of anemia cases among children in the poorest households. The well-known progression from anemia to future disease demonstrates the powerful and far-reaching effects of lost wildlife access on a variety of human health outcomes, including cognitive, motor, and physical deficits. Loss of access to wildlife could arise either from the diligent enforcement of existing conservation policy or from unbridled unsustainable harvest, leading to depletion. Conservation enforcement would enact a more rapid restriction of resources, but self-depletion would potentially lead, albeit more slowly, both to irrevocable local wildlife extinctions and loss of the harvested resource. Our research quantifies costs of reduced access to wildlife for a rural community in Madagascar and illuminates pathways that may broadly link reduced natural resource access to declines in childhood health.

  5. Spatial heterogeneity in the Mediterranean Biodiversity Hotspot affects barcoding accuracy of its freshwater fishes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Geiger, M. F.; Herder, F.; Monaghan, M. T.; Almada, V.; Barbieri, R.; Bariche, M.; Berrebi, P.; Bohlen, Jörg; Casal-Lopez, M.; Delmastro, G. B.; Denys, G. P. J.; Dettai, A.; Doadrio, I.; Kalogianni, E.; Kärst, H.; Kottelat, M.; Kovačič, M.; Laporte, M.; Lorenzoni, M.; Marčič, Z.; Özulug, M.; Percides, A.; Perea, S.; Persat, H.; Porcelotti, S.; Puzzi, C.; Robalo, J.; Šanda, R.; Schneider, M.; Šlechtová, Vendula; Stoumboudi, M.; Walter, S.; Freyhof, J.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 14, č. 6 (2014), s. 1210-1221 ISSN 1755-098X Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : DNA barcoding * evolutionary distinct and globally endangered score * fish Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 3.712, year: 2014

  6. Biogeography of Mediterranean Hotspot Biodiversity: Re-Evaluating the 'Tertiary Relict' Hypothesis of Macaronesian Laurel Forests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulina Kondraskov

    Full Text Available The Macaronesian laurel forests (MLF are dominated by trees with a laurophyll habit comparable to evergreen humid forests which were scattered across Europe and the Mediterranean in the Paleogene and Neogene. Therefore, MLF are traditionally regarded as an old, 'Tertiary relict' vegetation type. Here we address the question if key taxa of the MLF are relictual. We evaluated the relict hypothesis consulting fossil data and analyses based on molecular phylogenies of 18 representative species. For molecular dating we used the program BEAST, for ancestral trait reconstructions BayesTraits and Lagrange to infer ancestral areas. Our molecular dating showed that the origins of four species date back to the Upper Miocene while 14 originated in the Plio-Pleistocene. This coincides with the decline of fossil laurophyllous elements in Europe since the middle Miocene. Ancestral trait and area reconstructions indicate that MLF evolved partly from pre-adapted taxa from the Mediterranean, Macaronesia and the tropics. According to the fossil record laurophyllous taxa existed in Macaronesia since the Plio- and Pleistocene. MLF are composed of species with a heterogeneous origin. The taxa dated to the Pleistocene are likely not 'Tertiary relicts'. Some species may be interpreted as relictual. In this case, the establishment of most species in the Plio-Pleistocene suggests that there was a massive species turnover before this time. Alternatively, MLF were largely newly assembled through global recruitment rather than surviving as relicts of a once more widespread vegetation. This process may have possibly been triggered by the intensification of the trade winds at the end of the Pliocene as indicated by proxy data.

  7. Resource Pulses in Desert River Habitats: Productivity-Biodiversity Hotspots, or Mirages?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Free, Carissa L.; Baxter, Greg S.; Dickman, Christopher R.; Leung, Luke K. P.

    2013-01-01

    Resource pulses in the world's hot deserts are driven largely by rainfall and are highly variable in both time and space. However, run-on areas and drainage lines in arid regions receive more water more often than adjacent habitats, and frequently sustain relatively high levels of primary productivity. These landscape features therefore may support higher biotic diversity than other habitats, and potentially act as refuges for desert vertebrates and other biota during droughts. We used the ephemeral Field River in the Simpson Desert, central Australia, as a case study to quantify how resources and habitat characteristics vary spatially and temporally along the riparian corridor. Levels of moisture and nutrients were greater in the clay-dominated soils of the riverine corridor than in the surrounding sand dunes, as were cover values of trees, annual grasses, other annual plants and litter; these resources and habitat features were also greater near the main catchment area than in the distal reaches where the river channel runs out into extensive dune fields. These observations confirm that the riverine corridor is more productive than the surrounding desert, and support the idea that it may act as a refuge or as a channel for the ingress of peri-desert species. However, the work also demonstrates that species diversity of invertebrates and plants is not higher within the river corridor; rather, it is driven by rainfall and the accompanying increase in annual plants following a rain event. Further research is required to identify the biota that depend upon these resource pulses. PMID:24124446

  8. ​Reducing malnutrition in India's agri-biodiversity hotspots | CRDI ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    , vegetables, and fruit trees, and greater livestock diversity to increase income and improve food and nutrition security in rural India. Researchers will also investigate ways to increase the socio-economic empowerment of poor women, and ...

  9. Biogeography of Mediterranean Hotspot Biodiversity: Re-Evaluating the 'Tertiary Relict' Hypothesis of Macaronesian Laurel Forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondraskov, Paulina; Schütz, Nicole; Schüßler, Christina; de Sequeira, Miguel Menezes; Guerra, Arnoldo Santos; Caujapé-Castells, Juli; Jaén-Molina, Ruth; Marrero-Rodríguez, Águedo; Koch, Marcus A; Linder, Peter; Kovar-Eder, Johanna; Thiv, Mike

    2015-01-01

    The Macaronesian laurel forests (MLF) are dominated by trees with a laurophyll habit comparable to evergreen humid forests which were scattered across Europe and the Mediterranean in the Paleogene and Neogene. Therefore, MLF are traditionally regarded as an old, 'Tertiary relict' vegetation type. Here we address the question if key taxa of the MLF are relictual. We evaluated the relict hypothesis consulting fossil data and analyses based on molecular phylogenies of 18 representative species. For molecular dating we used the program BEAST, for ancestral trait reconstructions BayesTraits and Lagrange to infer ancestral areas. Our molecular dating showed that the origins of four species date back to the Upper Miocene while 14 originated in the Plio-Pleistocene. This coincides with the decline of fossil laurophyllous elements in Europe since the middle Miocene. Ancestral trait and area reconstructions indicate that MLF evolved partly from pre-adapted taxa from the Mediterranean, Macaronesia and the tropics. According to the fossil record laurophyllous taxa existed in Macaronesia since the Plio- and Pleistocene. MLF are composed of species with a heterogeneous origin. The taxa dated to the Pleistocene are likely not 'Tertiary relicts'. Some species may be interpreted as relictual. In this case, the establishment of most species in the Plio-Pleistocene suggests that there was a massive species turnover before this time. Alternatively, MLF were largely newly assembled through global recruitment rather than surviving as relicts of a once more widespread vegetation. This process may have possibly been triggered by the intensification of the trade winds at the end of the Pliocene as indicated by proxy data.

  10. Climate and soil type together explain the distribution of microendemic species in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romain Nattier

    Full Text Available The grasshopper genus Caledonula, endemic to New Caledonia, was studied to understand the evolution of species distributions in relation to climate and soil types. Based on a comprehensive sampling of 80 locations throughout the island, the genus was represented by five species, four of which are new to science, of which three are described here. All the species have limited distributions in New Caledonia. Bioclimatic niche modelling shows that all the species were found in association with a wet climate and reduced seasonality, explaining their restriction to the southern half of the island. The results suggest that the genus was ancestrally constrained by seasonality. A molecular phylogeny was reconstructed using two mitochondrial and two nuclear markers. The partially resolved tree showed monophyly of the species found on metalliferous soils, and molecular dating indicated a rather recent origin for the genus. Adaptation to metalliferous soils is suggested by both morphological changes and radiation on these soils. The genus Caledonula is therefore a good model to understand the origin of microendemism in the context of recent and mixed influences of climate and soil type.

  11. Geological and ecological factors drive cryptic speciation of yews in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jie; Möller, Michael; Provan, Jim; Gao, Lian-Ming; Poudel, Ram Chandra; Li, De-Zhu

    2013-09-01

    The interplay of orographic uplift and climatic changes in the Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains region (HHM) have had a key role in speciation and population demography. To gain further insight into these processes, we investigated their effects on Taxus wallichiana by combining molecular phylogeography and species distribution modeling. Molecular data were obtained from 43 populations of T. wallichiana. Nineteen climatic variables were analyzed alongside genetic discontinuities. Species distribution modeling was carried out to predict potential past distribution ranges. Two distinct lineages were identified, which diverged c. 4.2 (2.0-6.5) million years ago (Ma), a timescale that corresponds well with the recent uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and subsequent climatic changes of the region. Correlations with climatic variables also suggest that ecological factors may have further reinforced the separation of the two lineages. Both lineages experienced population expansion during the last glaciation. The high genetic divergence, long-term isolation and ecological differentiation suggest a scenario of cryptic speciation in T. wallichiana associated with geological and climatic changes in the HHM. Our findings also challenge the notion of general population 'contraction' during the last glaciation in the HHM. © 2013 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2013 New Phytologist Trust.

  12. ​Reducing malnutrition in India's agri-biodiversity hotspots | IDRC ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The challenge. Many of India's poor live in rural areas that are heavily dependent on agriculture. Local crops have a rich heritage of genetic diversity, but this diversity is often threatened by government policies that promote rice and wheat cultivation.This results in a disconnect between the high potential of the agricultural ...

  13. The role of thermal physiology in recent declines of birds in a biodiversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milne, Robyn; Cunningham, Susan J; Lee, Alan T K

    2015-01-01

    Abstract We investigated whether observed avian range contractions and population declines in the Fynbos biome of South Africa were mechanistically linked to recent climate warming. We aimed to determine whether there were correlations between preferred temperature envelope, or changes in temperature within species' ranges, and recent changes in range and population size, for 12 Fynbos-resident bird species, including six that are endemic to the biome. We then measured the physiological responses of each species at air temperatures ranging from 24 to 42°C to determine whether physiological thermal thresholds could provide a mechanistic explanation for observed population trends. Our data show that Fynbos-endemic species occupying the coolest regions experienced the greatest recent reductions in range and population size (>30% range reduction between 1991 and the present). In addition, species experiencing the largest increases in air temperature within their ranges showed the greatest declines. However, evidence for a physiological mechanistic link between warming and population declines was equivocal, with only the larger species showing low thermal thresholds for their body mass, compared with other birds globally. In addition, some species appear more vulnerable than others to air temperatures in their ranges above physiological thermal thresholds. Of these, the high-altitude specialist Cape rockjumper (Chaetops frenatus) seems most at risk from climate warming. This species showed: (i) the lowest threshold for increasing evaporative water loss at high temperatures; and (ii) population declines specifically in those regions of its range recording significant warming trends. Our findings suggest that caution must be taken when attributing causality explicitly to thermal stress, even when population trends are clearly correlated with rates of warming. Studies explicitly investigating the mechanisms underlying such correlations will be key to appropriate conservation planning. PMID:27293732

  14. Unravelling biodiversity, evolution and threats to conservation in the Sahara-Sahel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brito, José C; Godinho, Raquel; Martínez-Freiría, Fernando; Pleguezuelos, Juan M; Rebelo, Hugo; Santos, Xavier; Vale, Cândida G; Velo-Antón, Guillermo; Boratyński, Zbyszek; Carvalho, Sílvia B; Ferreira, Sónia; Gonçalves, Duarte V; Silva, Teresa L; Tarroso, Pedro; Campos, João C; Leite, João V; Nogueira, Joana; Alvares, Francisco; Sillero, Neftalí; Sow, Andack S; Fahd, Soumia; Crochet, Pierre-André; Carranza, Salvador

    2014-02-01

    Deserts and arid regions are generally perceived as bare and rather homogeneous areas of low diversity. The Sahara is the largest warm desert in the world and together with the arid Sahel displays high topographical and climatic heterogeneity, and has experienced recent and strong climatic oscillations that have greatly shifted biodiversity distribution and community composition. The large size, remoteness and long-term political instability of the Sahara-Sahel, have limited knowledge on its biodiversity. However, over the last decade, there have been an increasing number of published scientific studies based on modern geomatic and molecular tools, and broad sampling of taxa of these regions. This review tracks trends in knowledge about biodiversity patterns, processes and threats across the Sahara-Sahel, and anticipates needs for biodiversity research and conservation. Recent studies are changing completely the perception of regional biodiversity patterns. Instead of relatively low species diversity with distribution covering most of the region, studies now suggest a high rate of endemism and larger number of species, with much narrower and fragmented ranges, frequently limited to micro-hotspots of biodiversity. Molecular-based studies are also unravelling cryptic diversity associated with mountains, which together with recent distribution atlases, allows identifying integrative biogeographic patterns in biodiversity distribution. Mapping of multivariate environmental variation (at 1 km × 1 km resolution) of the region illustrates main biogeographical features of the Sahara-Sahel and supports recently hypothesised dispersal corridors and refugia. Micro-scale water-features present mostly in mountains have been associated with local biodiversity hotspots. However, the distribution of available data on vertebrates highlights current knowledge gaps that still apply to a large proportion of the Sahara-Sahel. Current research is providing insights into key

  15. Educating for preserving biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Méndez, I. E.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The notion of “culture of diversity” is presented in a new dimension. “That of educating for preserving biodiversity” is advanced together with its main challenges. The need of educating the masses for preserving biodiversity is perhaps the most outstanding to be faced, particularly if pedagogic requirements and the diversity of population is to be met. Likewise, it should help to put individuals in contact with the many elements conforming biodiversity and lead them to recognize its value ethically and esthetically. The research presents the framework for designing educating programs enhancing the genetic level, the ecosystem and the qualitative dimension and including materials and energy flood and its meaning for the homeostasis and autopoiesis of the system, together with its interactions with other components for achieving an equilibrium and stability. The importance of the natural evolution tendency is highlighted.

  16. Birds as biodiversity surrogates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Frank Wugt; Bladt, Jesper Stentoft; Balmford, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    1. Most biodiversity is still unknown, and therefore, priority areas for conservation typically are identified based on the presence of surrogates, or indicator groups. Birds are commonly used as surrogates of biodiversity owing to the wide availability of relevant data and their broad popular...... appeal. However, some studies have found birds to perform relatively poorly as indicators. We therefore ask how the effectiveness of this approach can be improved by supplementing data on birds with information on other taxa. 2. Here, we explore two strategies using (i) species data for other taxa...... and (ii) genus- and family-level data for invertebrates (when available). We used three distinct species data sets for sub-Saharan Africa, Denmark and Uganda, which cover different spatial scales, biogeographic regions and taxa (vertebrates, invertebrates and plants). 3. We found that networks of priority...

  17. Nanoscale hotspots due to nonequilibrium thermal transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sinha, Sanjiv; Goodson, Kenneth E.

    2004-01-01

    Recent experimental and modeling efforts have been directed towards the issue of temperature localization and hotspot formation in the vicinity of nanoscale heat generating devices. The nonequilibrium transport conditions which develop around these nanoscale devices results in elevated temperatures near the heat source which can not be predicted by continuum diffusion theory. Efforts to determine the severity of this temperature localization phenomena in silicon devices near and above room temperature are of technological importance to the development of microelectronics and other nanotechnologies. In this work, we have developed a new modeling tool in order to explore the magnitude of the additional thermal resistance which forms around nanoscale hotspots from temperatures of 100-1000K. The models are based on a two fluid approximation in which thermal energy is transferred between ''stationary'' optical phonons and fast propagating acoustic phonon modes. The results of the model have shown excellent agreement with experimental results of localized hotspots in silicon at lower temperatures. The model predicts that the effect of added thermal resistance due to the nonequilibrium phonon distribution is greatest at lower temperatures, but is maintained out to temperatures of 1000K. The resistance predicted by the numerical code can be easily integrated with continuum models in order to predict the temperature distribution around nanoscale heat sources with improved accuracy. Additional research efforts also focused on the measurements of the thermal resistance of silicon thin films at higher temperatures, with a focus on polycrystalline silicon. This work was intended to provide much needed experimental data on the thermal transport properties for micro and nanoscale devices built with this material. Initial experiments have shown that the exposure of polycrystalline silicon to high temperatures may induce recrystallization and radically increase the thermal

  18. European mountain biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagy, Jennifer

    1998-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper, originally prepared as a discussion document for the ESF Exploratory Workshop «Trends in European Mountain Biodiversity - Research Planning Workshop», provides an overview of current mountain biodiversity research in Europe. It discusses (a biogeographical trends, (b the general properties of biodiversity, (c environmental factors and the regulation of biodiversity with respect to ecosystem function, (d the results of research on mountain freshwater ecosystems, and (e climate change and air pollution dominated environmental interactions.- The section on biogeographical trends highlights the importance of altitude and latitude on biodiversity. The implications of the existence of different scales over the different levels of biodiversity and across organism groups are emphasised as an inherent complex property of biodiversity. The discussion on ecosystem function and the regulation of biodiversity covers the role of environmental factors, productivity, perturbation, species migration and dispersal, and species interactions in the maintenance of biodiversity. Regional and long-term temporal patterns are also discussed. A section on the relatively overlooked topic of mountain freshwater ecosystems is presented before the final topic on the implications of recent climate change and air pollution for mountain biodiversity.

    [fr] Ce document a été préparé à l'origine comme une base de discussion pour «ESF Exploratory Workshop» intitulé «Trends in European Mountain Biodiversity - Research Planning Workshop»; il apporte une vue d'ensemble sur les recherches actuelles portant sur la biodiversité des montagnes en Europe. On y discute les (a traits biogéographiques, (b les caractéristiques générales- de la biodiversité, (c les facteurs environnementaux et la régulation de la biodiversité par rapport à la fonction des écosystèmes, (d les résultats des études sur les écosystèmes aquatiques des montagnes et (e les

  19. The value of biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CJR. Alho

    Full Text Available In addition to its intrinsic value (nature working as it is; species are the product of a long history of continuing evolution by means of ecological processes, and so they have the right to continued existence, biodiversity also plays a fundamental role as ecosystem services in the maintenance of natural ecological processes. The economic or utilitarian values of biodiversity rely upon the dependence of man on biodiversity; products that nature can provide: wood, food, fibers to make paper, resins, chemical organic products, genes as well as knowledge for biotechnology, including medicine and cosmetic sub-products. It also encompasses ecosystem services, such as climate regulation, reproductive and feeding habitats for commercial fish, some organisms that can create soil fertility through complex cycles and interactions, such as earthworms, termites and bacteria, in addition to fungi responsible for cycling nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur and making them available to plant absorption. These services are the benefits that people indirectly receive from natural ecosystem functions (air quality maintenance, regional climate, water quality, nutrient cycling, reproductive habitats of commercial fish, etc. with their related economic values.

  20. The value of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alho, C J R

    2008-11-01

    In addition to its intrinsic value (nature working as it is; species are the product of a long history of continuing evolution by means of ecological processes, and so they have the right to continued existence), biodiversity also plays a fundamental role as ecosystem services in the maintenance of natural ecological processes. The economic or utilitarian values of biodiversity rely upon the dependence of man on biodiversity; products that nature can provide: wood, food, fibers to make paper, resins, chemical organic products, genes as well as knowledge for biotechnology, including medicine and cosmetic sub-products. It also encompasses ecosystem services, such as climate regulation, reproductive and feeding habitats for commercial fish, some organisms that can create soil fertility through complex cycles and interactions, such as earthworms, termites and bacteria, in addition to fungi responsible for cycling nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur and making them available to plant absorption. These services are the benefits that people indirectly receive from natural ecosystem functions (air quality maintenance, regional climate, water quality, nutrient cycling, reproductive habitats of commercial fish, etc.) with their related economic values.

  1. Biodiversity, globalisation and poverty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olorode, Omotoye

    2007-06-10

    The erosion of the stock of biodiversity on earth developed historically with the so-called voyages of discovery (and their antecedents), colonial conquests and the accompanying movements of natural products and peoples, i.e. movements of populations and genetic materials. These events happened with the development of technology and the so-called conquest, by man, of his environment and the appertaining development of specialization not only in industry but also in agriculture and environmental management. The development of specialization resulted in the homogenization of processes, products, inputs and input industries; this increased homogenization had the corollary of arrested heterogeneity across the board; what they call globalization is part of this process. The efficiency of homogenization, however, engendered new problems of fragility of human environment and of production and social relations and processes. The effects of this complex situation, in general terms and in terms of biodiversity in particular, have been more devastating for the more vulnerable regions, classes of people, and peoples of the world. A continuous rethinking of the epistemology and the social and political bases of existing policies on environment in general, and of biodiversity conservation in particular, has become imperative.

  2. Futures of global urban expansion: uncertainties and implications for biodiversity conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Güneralp, B; Seto, K C

    2013-01-01

    Urbanization will place significant pressures on biodiversity across the world. However, there are large uncertainties in the amount and location of future urbanization, particularly urban land expansion. Here, we present a global analysis of urban extent circa 2000 and probabilistic forecasts of urban expansion for 2030 near protected areas and in biodiversity hotspots. We estimate that the amount of urban land within 50 km of all protected area boundaries will increase from 450 000 km 2 circa 2000 to 1440 000 ± 65 000 km 2 in 2030. Our analysis shows that protected areas around the world will experience significant increases in urban land within 50 km of their boundaries. China will experience the largest increase in urban land near protected areas with 304 000 ± 33 000 km 2 of new urban land to be developed within 50 km of protected area boundaries. The largest urban expansion in biodiversity hotspots, over 100 000 ± 25 000 km 2 , is forecasted to occur in South America. Uncertainties in the forecasts of the amount and location of urban land expansion reflect uncertainties in their underlying drivers including urban population and economic growth. The forecasts point to the need to reconcile urban development and biodiversity conservation strategies. (letter)

  3. Potentially dangerous consequences for biodiversity of solar geoengineering implementation and termination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trisos, Christopher H; Amatulli, Giuseppe; Gurevitch, Jessica; Robock, Alan; Xia, Lili; Zambri, Brian

    2018-03-01

    Solar geoengineering is receiving increased policy attention as a potential tool to offset climate warming. While climate responses to geoengineering have been studied in detail, the potential biodiversity consequences are largely unknown. To avoid extinction, species must either adapt or move to track shifting climates. Here, we assess the effects of the rapid implementation, continuation and sudden termination of geoengineering on climate velocities-the speeds and directions that species would need to move to track changes in climate. Compared to a moderate climate change scenario (RCP4.5), rapid geoengineering implementation reduces temperature velocities towards zero in terrestrial biodiversity hotspots. In contrast, sudden termination increases both ocean and land temperature velocities to unprecedented speeds (global medians >10 km yr -1 ) that are more than double the temperature velocities for recent and future climate change in global biodiversity hotspots. Furthermore, as climate velocities more than double in speed, rapid climate fragmentation occurs in biomes such as temperate grasslands and forests where temperature and precipitation velocity vectors diverge spatially by >90°. Rapid geoengineering termination would significantly increase the threats to biodiversity from climate change.

  4. Geostatistical Approach to Find ‘Hotspots’ Where Biodiversity is at Risk in a Transition Country

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petrişor Alexandru-Ionuţ

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Global change‟ is a relatively recent concept, related to the energy - land use - climate change nexus, and designated to include all changes produced by the human species and the consequences of its activities over natural ecological complexes and biodiversity. The joint effects of these drivers of change are particularly relevant to understanding the changes of biodiversity. This study overlaps results of previous studies developed in Romania to find, explain and predict potential threats on biodiversity, including the effects of very high temperatures and low precipitations, urban sprawl and deforestation in order to identify „hotspots‟ of high risk for the loss of biodiversity using geostatistical tools. The results found two hotspots, one in the center and the other one in the south, and show that the area affected by three factors simultaneously represents 0.2% of the national territory, while paired effects cover 4% of it. The methodological advantage of this approach is its capacity to pinpoint hotspots with practical relevance. Nevertheless, its generalizing character impairs its use at the local scale..

  5. Current and future patterns of global marine mammal biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin Kaschner

    Full Text Available Quantifying the spatial distribution of taxa is an important prerequisite for the preservation of biodiversity, and can provide a baseline against which to measure the impacts of climate change. Here we analyse patterns of marine mammal species richness based on predictions of global distributional ranges for 115 species, including all extant pinnipeds and cetaceans. We used an environmental suitability model specifically designed to address the paucity of distributional data for many marine mammal species. We generated richness patterns by overlaying predicted distributions for all species; these were then validated against sightings data from dedicated long-term surveys in the Eastern Tropical Pacific, the Northeast Atlantic and the Southern Ocean. Model outputs correlated well with empirically observed patterns of biodiversity in all three survey regions. Marine mammal richness was predicted to be highest in temperate waters of both hemispheres with distinct hotspots around New Zealand, Japan, Baja California, the Galapagos Islands, the Southeast Pacific, and the Southern Ocean. We then applied our model to explore potential changes in biodiversity under future perturbations of environmental conditions. Forward projections of biodiversity using an intermediate Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC temperature scenario predicted that projected ocean warming and changes in sea ice cover until 2050 may have moderate effects on the spatial patterns of marine mammal richness. Increases in cetacean richness were predicted above 40° latitude in both hemispheres, while decreases in both pinniped and cetacean richness were expected at lower latitudes. Our results show how species distribution models can be applied to explore broad patterns of marine biodiversity worldwide for taxa for which limited distributional data are available.

  6. Analysis of observed soil moisture patterns under different land covers in Western Ghats, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatesh, B.; Lakshman, Nandagiri; Purandara, B. K.; Reddy, V. B.

    2011-02-01

    SummaryAn understanding of the soil moisture variability is necessary to characterize the linkages between a region's hydrology, ecology and physiography. In the changing land use scenario of Western Ghats, India, where deforestation along with extensive afforestation with exotic species is being undertaken, there is an urgent need to evaluate the impacts of these changes on regional hydrology. The objectives of the present study were: (a) to understand spatio-temporal variability of soil water potential and soil moisture content under different land covers in the humid tropical Western Ghats region and (b) to evaluate differences if any in spatial and temporal patterns of soil moisture content as influenced by nature of land cover. To this end, experimental watersheds located in the Western Ghats of Uttara Kannada District, Karnataka State, India, were established for monitoring of soil moisture. These watersheds possessed homogenous land covers of acacia plantation, natural forest and degraded forest. In addition to the measurements of hydro-meteorological parameters, soil matric potential measurements were made at four locations in each watershed at 50 cm, 100 cm and 150 cm depths at weekly time intervals during the period October 2004-December 2008. Soil moisture contents derived from potential measurements collected were analyzed to characterize the spatial and temporal variations across the three land covers. The results of ANOVA ( p < 0.01, LSD) test indicated that there was no significant change in the mean soil moisture across land covers. However, significant differences in soil moisture with depth were observed under forested watershed, whereas no such changes with depth were noticed under acacia and degraded land covers. Also, relationships between soil moisture at different depths were evaluated using correlation analysis and multiple linear regression models for prediction of soil moisture from climatic variables and antecedent moisture condition were

  7. Observations And Implications Of Spatial Complexity In Hotspot Volcanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kundargi, Rohan Kiran

    One of the defining characteristics of hotspot volcanism is the presence of a long-lived, linear chain of age-progressive volcanoes created by the movement of the lithosphere over a stationary melting anomaly. However, the spatial distribution of volcanism at hotspots is often complex and highly variable suggesting that the relationship between magma generation and magma transport at hotspots is poorly understood. Here, I present the results of the first systematic quantitative characterization of the spatial distribution of volcanism at oceanic hotspots. In the first study I develop a novel methodology to characterize the across-strike distribution of volcanism at hotspots and apply it to a catalog of 40 oceanic hotspots. I find that only 25% (10/40) of hotspots exhibit the simple single-peak profile predicted by geodynamic models of melt generation in mantle plumes. The remaining 75% (30/40) of hotspots exhibit a dual- or multi-peak pattern. In the second study, I focus on the across-strike distribution of volcanism at the oceanic hotspots that are sourced by a deep-rooted mantle plume. 14 out of the 15 consensus plume-fed hotspots exhibit a dual-peaked across-strike profile. The spacing between these peaks display a strong negative correlation with lithospheric age, in direct contrast to models of inter-volcanic spacing controlled by elastic plate thickness. This relation suggests a different mechanism controls volcanic spacing at plume-fed hotspots. In the third chapter, I investigate variations in the average topographic profiles over time along the two longest and best-constrained oceanic hotspot tracks: Hawaii and Louisville. I find that the dual-peak across-strike profile of volcanism is a persistent feature at the Louisville hotspot over the entire length of the track examined (spanning a period of more than 65 Myr). In contrast, the dual-peak profile of volcanism at Hawaii is only evident along the most recent portion of the track (i.e., over the last 5

  8. A Global Moving Hotspot Reference Frame: How well it fits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doubrovine, P. V.; Steinberger, B.; Torsvik, T. H.

    2010-12-01

    Since the early 1970s, when Jason Morgan proposed that hotspot tracks record motion of lithosphere over deep-seated mantle plumes, the concept of fixed hotspots has dominated the way we think about absolute plate reconstructions. In the last decade, with compelling evidence for southward drift of the Hawaiian hotspot from paleomagnetic studies, and for the relative motion between the Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hotspots from refined plate circuit reconstructions, the perception changed and a global moving hotspot reference frame (GMHRF) was introduced, in which numerical models of mantle convection and advection of plume conduits in the mantle flow were used to estimate hotspot motion. This reference frame showed qualitatively better performance in fitting hotspot tracks globally, but the error analysis and formal estimates of the goodness of fitted rotations were lacking in this model. Here we present a new generation of the GMHRF, in which updated plate circuit reconstructions and radiometric age data from the hotspot tracks were combined with numerical models of plume motion, and uncertainties of absolute plate rotations were estimated through spherical regression analysis. The overall quality of fit was evaluated using a formal statistical test, by comparing misfits produced by the model with uncertainties assigned to the data. Alternative plate circuit models linking the Pacific plate to the plates of Indo-Atlantic hemisphere were tested and compared to the fixed hotspot models with identical error budgets. Our results show that, with an appropriate choice of the Pacific plate circuit, it is possible to reconcile relative plate motions and modeled motions of mantle plumes globally back to Late Cretaceous time (80 Ma). In contrast, all fixed hotspot models failed to produce acceptable fits for Paleogene to Late Cretaceous time (30-80 Ma), highlighting significance of relative motion between the Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hotspots during this interval. The

  9. Geographic Hotspots of Critical National Infrastructure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thacker, Scott; Barr, Stuart; Pant, Raghav; Hall, Jim W; Alderson, David

    2017-12-01

    Failure of critical national infrastructures can result in major disruptions to society and the economy. Understanding the criticality of individual assets and the geographic areas in which they are located is essential for targeting investments to reduce risks and enhance system resilience. Within this study we provide new insights into the criticality of real-life critical infrastructure networks by integrating high-resolution data on infrastructure location, connectivity, interdependence, and usage. We propose a metric of infrastructure criticality in terms of the number of users who may be directly or indirectly disrupted by the failure of physically interdependent infrastructures. Kernel density estimation is used to integrate spatially discrete criticality values associated with individual infrastructure assets, producing a continuous surface from which statistically significant infrastructure criticality hotspots are identified. We develop a comprehensive and unique national-scale demonstration for England and Wales that utilizes previously unavailable data from the energy, transport, water, waste, and digital communications sectors. The testing of 200,000 failure scenarios identifies that hotspots are typically located around the periphery of urban areas where there are large facilities upon which many users depend or where several critical infrastructures are concentrated in one location. © 2017 Society for Risk Analysis.

  10. Use of ecoacoustics to determine biodiversity patterns across ecological gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Paul B C; Samways, Michael J

    2016-12-01

    The variety of local animal sounds characterizes a landscape. We used ecoacoustics to noninvasively assess the species richness of various biotopes typical of an ecofriendly forest plantation with diverse ecological gradients and both nonnative and indigenous vegetation. The reference area was an adjacent large World Heritage Site protected area (PA). All sites were in a global biodiversity hotspot. Our results showed how taxa segregated into various biotopes. We identified 65 singing species, including birds, frogs, crickets, and katydids. Large, natural, protected grassland sites in the PA had the highest mean acoustic diversity (14.1 species/site). Areas covered in nonnative timber or grass species were devoid of acoustic species. Sites grazed by native and domestic megaherbivores were fairly rich (5.1) in acoustic species but none were unique to this habitat type, where acoustic diversity was greater than in intensively managed grassland sites (0.04). Natural vegetation patches inside the plantation mosaic supported high mean acoustic diversity (indigenous forests 7.6, grasslands 8.0, wetlands 9.1), which increased as plant heterogeneity and patch size increased. Indigenous forest patches within the plantation mosaic contained a highly characteristic acoustic species assemblage, emphasizing their complementary contribution to local biodiversity. Overall, acoustic signals determined spatial biodiversity patterns and can be a useful tool for guiding conservation. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  11. Assessment of landscape diversity and determination of landscape hotspots - a case of Slovenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perko, Drago; Ciglič, Rok; Hrvatin, Mauro

    2017-04-01

    Areas with high landscape diversity can be regarded as landscape hotspots, and vice versa areas with low landscape diversity can be marked as landscape coldspots. The main purpose of this paper is to use quantitative geoinformatical approach and identify parts of our test area (the country of Slovenia) that can be described as very diverse according to natural landscapes and natural elements. We used different digital raster data of natural elements and landscape classifications and defined landscape diversity and landscape hotspots. We defined diversity for each raster pixel by counting the number of different unique types of landscape elements and types of landscapes in its neighborhood. Namely, the method was used separately to define diversity according to natural elements (types of relief forms, rocks, and vegetation) and diversity according to existing geographical landscape classifications of Slovenia (types of landscapes). In both cases one-tenth of Slovenia's surface with the highest landscape diversity was defined as landscape hotspots. The same applies to the coldspots. Additionally we tested the same method of counting different types of landscapes in certain radius also for the area of Europe in order to find areas that are more diverse at continental level. By doing so we were able to find areas that have similar level of diversity as Slovenia according to different European landscape classifications. Areas with landscape diversity may have an advantage in economic development, especially in tourism. Such areas are also important for biodiversity, habitat, and species diversity. On the other hand, localities where various natural influences mix can also be areas where it is hard to transfer best practices from one place to another because of the varying responses of the landscapes to human intervention. Thus it is important to know where areas with high landscape diversity are.

  12. Using expert informed GIS to locate important marine social-ecological hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahboubi, Pouyan; Parkes, Margot; Stephen, Craig; Chan, Hing Man

    2015-09-01

    The marine environment provides significant benefits to many local communities. Pressure to develop coastal waterways worldwide creates an urgent need for tools to locate marine spaces that have important social or ecological values, and to quantify their relative importance. The primary objective of this study was to develop, apply and critically assess a tool to identify important social-ecological hotspots in the marine environment. The study was conducted in a typical coastal community in northern British Columbia, Canada. This expert-informed GIS, or xGIS, tool used a survey instrument to draw on the knowledge of local experts from a range of backgrounds with respect to a series of 12 social-ecological value attributes, such as biodiversity, cultural and economic values. We identified approximately 1500 polygons on marine maps and assigned relative values to them using a token distribution exercise. A series of spatial statistical analyses were performed to locate and quantify the relative social-ecological importance of marine spaces and the results were ultimately summarized in a single hotspot map of the entire study area. This study demonstrates the utility of xGIS as a useful tool for stakeholders and environmental managers engaged in the planning and management of marine resources at the local and regional levels. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Conservation planning for biodiversity and wilderness: a real-world example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceauşu, Silvia; Gomes, Inês; Pereira, Henrique Miguel

    2015-05-01

    Several of the most important conservation prioritization approaches select markedly different areas at global and regional scales. They are designed to maximize a certain biodiversity dimension such as coverage of species in the case of hotspots and complementarity, or composite properties of ecosystems in the case of wilderness. Most comparisons between approaches have ignored the multidimensionality of biodiversity. We analyze here the results of two species-based methodologies-hotspots and complementarity-and an ecosystem-based methodology-wilderness-at local scale. As zoning of protected areas can increase the effectiveness of conservation, we use the data employed for the management plan of the Peneda-Gerês National Park in Portugal. We compare the approaches against four criteria: species representativeness, wilderness coverage, coverage of important areas for megafauna, and for regulating ecosystem services. Our results suggest that species- and ecosystem-based approaches select significantly different areas at local scale. Our results also show that no approach covers well all biodiversity dimensions. Species-based approaches cover species distribution better, while the ecosystem-based approach favors wilderness, areas important for megafauna, and for ecosystem services. Management actions addressing different dimensions of biodiversity have a potential for contradictory effects, social conflict, and ecosystem services trade-offs, especially in the context of current European biodiversity policies. However, biodiversity is multidimensional, and management and zoning at local level should reflect this aspect. The consideration of both species- and ecosystem-based approaches at local scale is necessary to achieve a wider range of conservation goals.

  14. Conservation Planning for Biodiversity and Wilderness: A Real-World Example

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceauşu, Silvia; Gomes, Inês; Pereira, Henrique Miguel

    2015-05-01

    Several of the most important conservation prioritization approaches select markedly different areas at global and regional scales. They are designed to maximize a certain biodiversity dimension such as coverage of species in the case of hotspots and complementarity, or composite properties of ecosystems in the case of wilderness. Most comparisons between approaches have ignored the multidimensionality of biodiversity. We analyze here the results of two species-based methodologies—hotspots and complementarity—and an ecosystem-based methodology—wilderness—at local scale. As zoning of protected areas can increase the effectiveness of conservation, we use the data employed for the management plan of the Peneda-Gerês National Park in Portugal. We compare the approaches against four criteria: species representativeness, wilderness coverage, coverage of important areas for megafauna, and for regulating ecosystem services. Our results suggest that species- and ecosystem-based approaches select significantly different areas at local scale. Our results also show that no approach covers well all biodiversity dimensions. Species-based approaches cover species distribution better, while the ecosystem-based approach favors wilderness, areas important for megafauna, and for ecosystem services. Management actions addressing different dimensions of biodiversity have a potential for contradictory effects, social conflict, and ecosystem services trade-offs, especially in the context of current European biodiversity policies. However, biodiversity is multidimensional, and management and zoning at local level should reflect this aspect. The consideration of both species- and ecosystem-based approaches at local scale is necessary to achieve a wider range of conservation goals.

  15. Biofuels and biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiens, John; Fargione, Joseph; Hill, Jason

    2011-06-01

    The recent increase in liquid biofuel production has stemmed from a desire to reduce dependence on foreign oil, mitigate rising energy prices, promote rural economic development, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The growth of this industry has important implications for biodiversity, the effects of which depend largely on which biofuel feedstocks are being grown and the spatial extent and landscape pattern of land requirements for growing these feedstocks. Current biofuel production occurs largely on croplands that have long been in agricultural production. The additional land area required for future biofuels production can be met in part by reclaiming reserve or abandoned croplands and by extending cropping into lands formerly deemed marginal for agriculture. In the United States, many such marginal lands have been enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), providing important habitat for grassland species. The demand for corn ethanOl has changed agricultural commodity economics dramatically, already contributing to loss of CRP lands as contracts expire and lands are returned to agricultural production. Nevertheless, there are ways in which biofuels can be developed to enhance their coexistence with biodiversity. Landscape heterogeneity can be improved by interspersion of land uses, which is easier around facilities with smaller or more varied feedstock demands. The development of biofuel feedstocks that yield high net energy returns with minimal carbon debts or that do not require additional land for production, such as residues and wastes, should be encouraged. Competing land uses, including both biofuel production and biodiversity protection, should be subjected to comprehensive cost-benefit analysis, so that incentives can be directed where they will do the most good.

  16. Photothermal probing of plasmonic hotspots with nanomechanical resonator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmid, Silvan; Wu, Kaiyu; Rindzevicius, Tomas

    2014-01-01

    Plasmonic nanostructures (hotspots) are key components e.g. in plasmon-enhanced spectroscopy, plasmonic solar cells, or as nano heat sources. The characterization of single hotspots is still challenging due to a lack of experimental tools. We present the direct photothermal probing and mapping...

  17. Prevalence of Gastrointestinal Parasites in Civets of Fragmented Rainforest Patches in Anamalai Hills, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakraborty, Debapriyo; Tiwari, Sunil; Reddy, D Mahender; Umapathy, Govindhaswamy

    2016-08-01

    :  Parasitism, driven by anthropogenic habitat modifications, is being increasingly recognized as a major threat to wildlife. Unfortunately, even baseline parasite data for most wildlife species are lacking in India, including the civets, which are particularly vulnerable due to their proximity to human habitations. Civet fecal samples were collected from 10 forest fragments that vary in size and disturbance level in Anamalai Hills, Western Ghats, India. These samples were screened for the presence of gastrointestinal parasites using fecal floatation and fecal sedimentation techniques. From a total of 180 civet fecal samples, 15 gastrointestinal parasite taxa were recovered, and these species are also known to infect domesticated animals. Additionally, small, disturbed forest fragments recorded higher mean gastrointestinal parasite taxa and greater prevalence when compared to large, undisturbed forest fragments, indicating a potential relationship between anthropogenic activities and gastrointestinal parasitism of civets in the Anamalai Hills.

  18. Activity pattern of Sloth Bear Melursus ursinus (Mammalia: Ursidae in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Ramesh

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available We used information from systematic camera trapping surveys to study activity patterns of sloth bear (Melursus ursinus in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Western Ghats during November 2009 to April 2010.Overall 61 independent photographs were obtained from 2600 trap nights. Sloth Bears showed bimodal peaks activities; late evening to midnight and small peak during sunrise. The mean activity time was 21:54 plus or minus 00:46 hrs. Although sloth bears were active throughout the day they exhibited reduced activity during the hottest hours of the day. Sloth Bears might have reduced their activity during the day to avoid the intense heat.Our data demonstrate that use of camera traps in documenting activity patterns can be an effective tool for identifying biological questions of sloth bear ecology for future studies.

  19. Variation in volatile constituents of Cinnamomum keralaense, endemic to the Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sriramavaratharajan, Venkatraman; Stephan, Jeyamary; Sudha, Veerappan; Murugan, Ramar

    2017-04-01

    Leaf essential oils (EOs) of Cinnamomum keralaense, an endemic species to Southern Western Ghats, India, were investigated. Leaves were collected from three distinct populations and hydro-distilled to obtain EOs, which were analysed by GC-FID and GC-MS. A total of 68 constituents was identified from three EOs. Wide variation was found in the composition of EOs. Ten major compounds were identified from three EOs, however, none of the compound was present in all three EOs as major constituent. High content of methyl eugenol (82.5%) in one of the EOs is significant as it could be evaluated for commercial utilization. This is the first report on the chemical compositions of leaf EOs of C. keralaense.

  20. A case study of butterfly road kills from Anaikatty Hills, Western Ghats, Tamil Nadu, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. K. Sony

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available  Anaikatty Hills of the Western Ghats in Tamil Nadu witness the annual spectacle of mass movement of lakhs of butterflies.  The present paper examines the impact of vehicular traffic on this ‘butterfly migration’ through a survey of butterfly mortality along a road stretch in Anaikatty Hills.  A high rate of mortality due to road traffic was observed during the mass movement of butterflies.  One-hundred-and-thirty-five butterfly road kills belonging to three families, nine genera and 12 species were recorded during the study.  The proportion of nymphalid butterflies among the road kills (70% was very high compared to their respective share in the background population (39%, indicating a higher road mortality risk for nymphalids.  The conservation significance of the road traffic impact on butterfly assemblage and management options are discussed. 

  1. Exploring Western Ghats microbial diversity for antagonistic microorganisms against fungal phytopathogens of pepper and chickpea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B.N. RAMKUMAR

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Newly isolated microbial cultures from Western Ghat soil samples of Kerala region in India were screened for antagonistic activity by well diffusion and dual culture plating against Phytophthora capsici and Rhizoctonia solani, infecting pepper and chickpea, respectively. Bioactive samples were made by varying solvent extraction of the culture broths of the potent isolates belongs to Actinomycetes, Pseudomonas, Bacillus and Trichoderma. The efficacy of the isolates to produce other potent antifungal metabolites such as cell wall degrading enzymes, HCN and volatile compounds were also checked. Treatment with antagonistic isolates in vivo under greenhouse conditions revealed significant reduction of the disease intensity of foot rot disease of black pepper and collar rot of chick pea.

  2. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Biodiversity

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Biodiversity provides data and information on amphibians, disease agents (extent and distribution of infectious and parasitic...

  3. Water-borne hyphomycetes in tree canopies of Kaiga (Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naga M. Sudheep

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The canopy samples such as trapped leaf litter, trapped sediment (during summer, stemflow and throughfall (during monsoon from five common riparian tree species (Artocarpus heterophyllus, Cassia fistula, Ficus recemosa, Syzygium caryophyllatum and Xylia xylocarpa in Kaiga forest stand of the Western Ghats of southwest India were evaluated for the occurrence of water-borne hyphomycetes. Partially decomposed trapped leaf litter was incubated in bubble chambers followed by filtration to assess conidial output. Sediments accumulated in tree holes or junction of branches were shaken with sterile leaf disks in distilled water followed by incubation of leaf disks in bubble chamber and filtration to find out colonized fungi. Stemflow and throughfall samples were filtered directly to collect free conidia. From five canopy niches, a total of 29 water-borne hyphomycetes were recovered. The species richness was higher in stemflow and throughfall than trapped leaf litter and sediments (14-16 vs. 6-10 species. Although sediments of Syzygium caryophyllatum were acidic (5.1, the conidial output was higher than other tree species. Stemflow and throughfall of Xylea xylocarpa even though alkaline (8.5-8.7 showed higher species richness (6-12 species as well as conidial load than rest of the tree species. Flagellospora curvula and Triscelophorus acuminatus were common in trapped leaf litter and sediments respectively, while conidia of Anguillospora crassa and A. longissima were frequent in stemflow and throughfall. Diversity of water-borne hyphomycetes was highest in throughfall of Xylea xylocarpa followed by throughfall of Ficus recemosa. Our study reconfirms the occurrence and survival of diverse water-borne hyphomycetes in different niches of riparian tree canopies of the Western Ghats during wet and dry regimes and predicts their possible role in canopy as saprophytes, endophytes and alternation of life cycle between canopy and aquatic habitats.

  4. Moderate land use changes plant functional composition without loss of functional diversity in India's Western Ghats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandle, Lisa; Ticktin, Tamara

    2015-09-01

    The fields of ecology and conservation science increasingly recognize the importance of managing for functional composition and functional diversity to maintain critical ecosystem processes and services. However, little is known about the degree to which widespread but moderate forms of land use that maintain overall vegetation structure are compatible with the conservation of functional diversity. We assessed differences in plani functional composition and functional diversity across savanna woodlands in the Western Ghats, India, managed with varying degrees of biomass extraction, livestock grazing, and ground fire. Across the gradient of moderate land uses, we found shifts in functional composition but no overall decline in functional diversity with land, use intensification. Biomass extraction was associated with changes in dispersal mode, reduced seed mass, and lower overstory functional diversity. Livestock grazing was associated with shorter overstory species, reduced seed mass, and increased understory functional diversity. Nonnative invasive species contributed to shifts in understory functional composition with livestock grazing and increased functional diversity with more intensive land use. Our study highlights both the utility and some limitations of assessing conservation value with functional diversity. These results suggest that moderate-intensity local land use can be compatible with maintenance of functional diversity in savanna woodlands of the Western Ghats, and further efforts to maximize this compatibility would benefit conservation in South India's extensive human-managed landscapes. However, using functional diversity as the sole metric by which to gauge conservation value can mask threats from invasive species and loss of diversity within categories of biotic dispersal. Therefore, functional diversity metrics are likely to provide a valuable complement to, but not replacement for, other management targets such as species composition.

  5. Climate change and forests: Impacts and adaption. A regional assessment for the Western Ghats, India

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ravindranath, N.H.; Sukumar, R. [Indian Inst. of Science, Bangalore (India). Centre for Ecological Sciences; Deshingkar, P. [Stockholm Environment Inst. (Sweden)

    1997-12-31

    Potential climate change over the next 50 to 100 years could have major impacts on tropical forests. Forests, particularly in the tropics, are subjected to anthropogenic pressures leading to degradation and loss of forest ecosystems. Given the significant dependence of local people and economies on forests in tropical and temperate countries, there is a need to assess the possible impacts of climate change and to develop adaption measures. The diversity of forest types in the Western Ghats ranges from wet evergreen and deciduous forest to dry thorn and montane forests with a wide range of annual rainfall regimes (from less than 65 cm to over 300 cm). The study was conducted in two regions of the Western Ghats; the Uttara Kannada district and the Nilgiris. Climate change projections for 2020 and 2050 were used in assessing the possible impacts on forests. In general, the `most likely` projections of climate change were an increase in mean temperature in the range of 0.3-1.0 deg C and an increase in precipitation of 3-8% over the study regions by the year 2050. The `worst case` scenario was an increase in temperature of 1 deg C and a decrease in precipitation by 8% by 2050. To assess the vegetational responses to climate change, a simple model based on present-day correlations between climatic (mean annual temperature and precipitation) and vegetation types for these regions was developed. Likely changes in the areas under different forest types were assessed for `moderate climate` sensitivity and central scaling factor (referred to as the `most likely scenario`) for the years 2020 and 2050, and `high climate` sensitivity and a lower scaling factor (the `worst case scenario`) for 2050 90 refs, 15 figs, 15 tabs

  6. Molecular architecture of transcription factor hotspots in early adipogenesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Siersbæk, Rasmus; Baek, Songjoon; Rabiee, Atefeh

    2014-01-01

    Transcription factors have recently been shown to colocalize in hotspot regions of the genome, which are further clustered into super-enhancers. However, the detailed molecular organization of transcription factors at hotspot regions is poorly defined. Here, we have used digital genomic footprint......Transcription factors have recently been shown to colocalize in hotspot regions of the genome, which are further clustered into super-enhancers. However, the detailed molecular organization of transcription factors at hotspot regions is poorly defined. Here, we have used digital genomic...... footprinting to precisely define factor localization at a genome-wide level during the early phase of 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation, which allows us to obtain detailed molecular insight into how transcription factors target hotspots. We demonstrate the formation of ATF-C/EBP heterodimers at a composite...

  7. Characteristics of suicide hotspots on the Belgian railway network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debbaut, Kevin; Krysinska, Karolina; Andriessen, Karl

    2014-01-01

    In 2004, railway suicide accounted for 5.3% of all suicides in Belgium. In 2008, Infrabel (Manager of the Belgian Railway Infrastructure) introduced a railway suicide prevention programme, including identification of suicide hotspots, i.e., areas of the railway network with an elevated incidence of suicide. The study presents an analysis of 43 suicide hotspots based on Infrabel data collected during field visits and semi-structured interviews conducted in mental health facilities in the vicinity of the hotspots. Three major characteristics of the hotspots were accessibility, anonymity, and vicinity of a mental health institution. The interviews identified several risk and protective factors for railway suicide, including the training of staff, introduction of a suicide prevention policy, and the role of the media. In conclusion, a comprehensive railway suicide prevention programme should continuously safeguard and monitor hotspots, and should be embedded in a comprehensive suicide prevention programme in the community.

  8. Patterns in Biodiversity: Spatial organisation of biodiversity in the Netherland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schouten, M.A.

    2007-01-01

    A better understanding of biodiversity and its current threats is urgently needed, especially in the Netherlands where high population density, industrialisation, and intensive land-use have radically altered the natural landscape. Often, biodiversity research is seriously hampered by a lack of

  9. Imbalance aware lithography hotspot detection: a deep learning approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Haoyu; Luo, Luyang; Su, Jing; Lin, Chenxi; Yu, Bei

    2017-07-01

    With the advancement of very large scale integrated circuits (VLSI) technology nodes, lithographic hotspots become a serious problem that affects manufacture yield. Lithography hotspot detection at the post-OPC stage is imperative to check potential circuit failures when transferring designed patterns onto silicon wafers. Although conventional lithography hotspot detection methods, such as machine learning, have gained satisfactory performance, with the extreme scaling of transistor feature size and layout patterns growing in complexity, conventional methodologies may suffer from performance degradation. For example, manual or ad hoc feature extraction in a machine learning framework may lose important information when predicting potential errors in ultra-large-scale integrated circuit masks. We present a deep convolutional neural network (CNN) that targets representative feature learning in lithography hotspot detection. We carefully analyze the impact and effectiveness of different CNN hyperparameters, through which a hotspot-detection-oriented neural network model is established. Because hotspot patterns are always in the minority in VLSI mask design, the training dataset is highly imbalanced. In this situation, a neural network is no longer reliable, because a trained model with high classification accuracy may still suffer from a high number of false negative results (missing hotspots), which is fatal in hotspot detection problems. To address the imbalance problem, we further apply hotspot upsampling and random-mirror flipping before training the network. Experimental results show that our proposed neural network model achieves comparable or better performance on the ICCAD 2012 contest benchmark compared to state-of-the-art hotspot detectors based on deep or representative machine leaning.

  10. Climate changes and biodiversity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bertelsmeier, C.

    2011-01-01

    As some people forecast an average temperature increase between 1 and 3.5 degrees by the end of the century, with higher increases under high latitudes (it could reach 8 degrees in some regions of Canada), other changes will occur: precipitations, sea level rise, reductions in polar ice, extreme climatic events, glacier melting, and so on. The author discusses how these changes will impact biodiversity as they will threat habitat and living conditions of many species. Some studies assess a loss of 15 to 37 per cent of biodiversity by 2050. Moreover, physiology is influenced by temperature: for some species, higher temperatures favour the development of female embryos, or the increase of their population, or may result in an evolution of their reproduction strategy. Life rhythm will also change, for plants as well as for animals. Species will keep on changing their distribution area, but some others will not be able to and are therefore threatened. Finally, as the evolutions concern their vectors, some diseases will spread in new regions

  11. Net present biodiversity value and the design of biodiversity offsets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overton, Jacob McC; Stephens, R T Theo; Ferrier, Simon

    2013-02-01

    There is an urgent need to develop sound theory and practice for biodiversity offsets to provide a better basis for offset multipliers, to improve accounting for time delays in offset repayments, and to develop a common framework for evaluating in-kind and out-of-kind offsets. Here, we apply concepts and measures from systematic conservation planning and financial accounting to provide a basis for determining equity across type (of biodiversity), space, and time. We introduce net present biodiversity value (NPBV) as a theoretical and practical measure for defining the offset required to achieve no-net-loss. For evaluating equity in type and space we use measures of biodiversity value from systematic conservation planning. Time discount rates are used to address risk of non-repayment, and loss of utility. We illustrate these concepts and measures with two examples of biodiversity impact-offset transactions. Considerable further work is required to understand the characteristics of these approaches.

  12. How Can High-Biodiversity Coffee Make It to the Mainstream Market? The Performativity of Voluntary Sustainability Standards and Outcomes for Coffee Diversification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solér, Cecilia; Sandström, Cecilia; Skoog, Hanna

    2017-02-01

    This article investigates the outcomes of mainstream coffee voluntary sustainability standards for high-biodiversity coffee diversification. By viewing voluntary sustainability standards certifications as performative marketing tools, we address the question of how such certification schemes affect coffee value creation based on unique biodiversity conservation properties in coffee farming. To date, the voluntary sustainability standards literature has primarily approached biodiversity conservation in coffee farming in the context of financial remuneration to coffee farmers. The performative analysis of voluntary sustainability standards certification undertaken in this paper, in which such certifications are analyzed in terms of their effect on mutually reinforcing representational, normalizing and exchange practices, provides an understanding of coffee diversification potential as dependent on standard criteria and voluntary sustainability standards certification as branding tools. We draw on a case of high-biodiversity, shade-grown coffee-farming practice in Kodagu, South-West India, which represents one of the world's biodiversity "hotspots".

  13. Integrative Taxonomic Approach for Describing a New Cryptic Species of Bush Frog (Raorchestes: Anura: Rhacophoridae) from the Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priti, H; Roshmi, Rekha Sarma; Ramya, Badrinath; Sudhira, H S; Ravikanth, G; Aravind, Neelavara Anantharam; Gururaja, Kotambylu Vasudeva

    2016-01-01

    A new cryptic species of bush frog Raorchestes honnametti sp. nov. is described from the south-eastern part of the Western Ghats, India. This newly described species belongs to the Charius clade and is morphologically similar to other clade members--R. charius and R. griet. Therefore, an integrative taxonomic approach based on molecular and bioacoustic analysis along with morphology was used to delimit the new species. Raorchestes honnametti sp. nov., is currently known only from Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple Tiger Reserve, a part of Biligiri Rangaswamy horst mountain range (a mountain formed due movement of two faults) formed during the Late Quaternary period (1.8-2.58 Ma). Discovery of cryptic species from a highly speciose and well-studied genus Raorchestes hints at the possible existence of several more cryptic species in this genus. We discuss the possible reasons for crypsis and emphasize the need for continued systematic surveys of amphibians across the Western Ghats.

  14. Rare fungus feeding Darkling Beetle, Byrsax cornutus Fabricius, 1792 (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae: Bolitophagini from the Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Arunraj

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Byrsax cornutus is a rare darkling beetle associated with the fruiting bodies of bracket fungi. Cryptic brownish-grey coloration of adults that matches the color of their host bracket fungus Ganoderma applanatum and secretive habits lead them to be often overlooked by collectors. A first record and a detailed description of B. cornutus from the Western Ghats, notes on its habits and distribution and key to the two Indian species of Byrsax are provided

  15. A new large trapdoor spider species of the genus Heligmomerus Simon 1892 (Araneae, Mygalomorphae, Idiopidae from Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajesh V. Sanap

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available A new species of trapdoor spider, Heligmomerus maximus sp. nov. is described from southern Western Ghats of Kerala state, India. The new species differs from known species of the genus from India and Sri Lanka in possessing a band of thorn-like spinules on coxa IV. Moreover it is the largest species of the genus with adult females reaching a length up to 32 mm and the burrows are shallow compared with other species of the genus.

  16. Linking soil biodiversity and agricultural soil management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thiele-Bruhn, S.; Bloem, J.; de Vries, F.T.; Kalbitz, K.; Wagg, C.

    2012-01-01

    Soil biodiversity vastly exceeds aboveground biodiversity, and is prerequisite for ecosystem stability and services. This review presents recent findings in soil biodiversity research focused on interrelations with agricultural soil management. Richness and community structure of soil biota depend

  17. Undergraduate Students' Attitudes toward Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Hui-Ju; Lin, Yu-Teh Kirk

    2014-01-01

    The study investigated American and Taiwan undergraduate students' attitudes toward biodiversity. The survey questionnaire consisted of statements prompted by the question "To what extent do you agree with the following statements about problems with the biodiversity issues." Students indicated strongly disagree, disagree, agree,…

  18. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Chris D; Anderson, Barbara J; Moilanen, Atte; Eigenbrod, Felix; Heinemeyer, Andreas; Quaife, Tristan; Roy, David B; Gillings, Simon; Armsworth, Paul R; Gaston, Kevin J

    2013-05-01

    Climate change is leading to the development of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies that are likely to have substantial impacts on global biodiversity. Of these, approaches to maintain carbon within existing natural ecosystems could have particularly large benefits for biodiversity. However, the geographical distributions of terrestrial carbon stocks and biodiversity differ. Using conservation planning analyses for the New World and Britain, we conclude that a carbon-only strategy would not be effective at conserving biodiversity, as have previous studies. Nonetheless, we find that a combined carbon-biodiversity strategy could simultaneously protect 90% of carbon stocks (relative to a carbon-only conservation strategy) and > 90% of the biodiversity (relative to a biodiversity-only strategy) in both regions. This combined approach encapsulates the principle of complementarity, whereby locations that contain different sets of species are prioritised, and hence disproportionately safeguard localised species that are not protected effectively by carbon-only strategies. It is efficient because localised species are concentrated into small parts of the terrestrial land surface, whereas carbon is somewhat more evenly distributed; and carbon stocks protected in one location are equivalent to those protected elsewhere. Efficient compromises can only be achieved when biodiversity and carbon are incorporated together within a spatial planning process. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  19. Habitat modeling for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce G. Marcot

    2006-01-01

    Habitat models address only 1 component of biodiversity but can be useful in addressing and managing single or multiple species and ecosystem functions, for projecting disturbance regimes, and in supporting decisions. I review categories and examples of habitat models, their utility for biodiversity conservation, and their roles in making conservation decisions. I...

  20. Place prioritization for biodiversity content

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The prioritization of places on the basis of biodiversity content is part of any systematic biodiversity conservation planning process. The place prioritization procedure implemented in the ResNet software package is described. This procedure is primarily based on the principles of rarity and complementarity. Application of the ...

  1. Soil biodiversity for agricultural sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brussaard, L.; Ruiter, de P.C.; Brown, G.G.

    2007-01-01

    We critically highlight some evidence for the importance of soil biodiversity to sustaining (agro-)ecosystem functioning and explore directions for future research. We first deal with resistance and resilience against abiotic disturbance and stress. There is evidence that soil biodiversity does

  2. Operationalizing biodiversity for conservation planning

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Biodiversity has acquired such a general meaning that people now find it difficult to pin down a precise sense for planning and policy-making aimed at biodiversity ... Wildlife and Ecology, Tropical Forest Research Centre and the Rainforest Cooperative Research Centre, PO Box 780, Atherton, Queensland, 4883, Australia ...

  3. European Atlas of Soil Biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krogh (contributor), Paul Henning

    on Earth, life within the soil is often hidden away and suffers by being 'out of sight and out of mind'. What kind of life is there in soil? What do we mean by soil biodiversity? What is special about soil biology? How do our activities affect soil ecosystems? What are the links between soil biota...... and climate change? The first ever European Atlas of Soil Biodiversity uses informative texts, stunning photographs and maps to answer these questions and other issues. The European Atlas of Soil Biodiversity functions as a comprehensive guide allowing non-specialists to access information about this unseen...... Biodiversity'. Starting with the smallest organisms such as the bacteria, this segment works through a range of taxonomic groups such as fungi, nematodes, insects and macro-fauna to illustrate the astonishing levels of heterogeneity of life in soil. The European Atlas of Soil Biodiversity is more than just...

  4. The compatibility of agricultural intensification in a global hotspot of smallholder agrobiodiversity (Bolivia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerer, Karl S

    2013-02-19

    Integrating the conservation of biodiversity by smallholder farmers with agricultural intensification is increasingly recognized as a leading priority of sustainability and food security amid global environmental and socioeconomic change. An international research project investigated the smallholder agrobiodiversity of maize (corn) in a global hotspot (Bolivia) undergoing significant intensification. Peach-based intensification was pronounced (300-400%) and prolonged (2000-2010) in study areas. Intensification and maize agrobiodiversity were found to co-occur within smallholder landscapes. Interactions of these field systems did not trigger land-change tipping points leading to landrace extirpation. By 2010 maize landraces in the study areas still demonstrated high levels of taxonomic and ecological biodiversity and contributed significantly to this crop's agrobiodiversity at national (31%) and hemispheric (3%) scales. Social and ecological resilience and in situ conservation of the maize agrobiodiversity by Bolivian smallholders was enabled through robust linkages to off-farm migration; resource access and asset capabilities among both traditional and nontraditional growers; landrace agroecology and food uses; and innovative knowledge and skills. The smallholders' resilience resulting from these linkages was integral to the conditional success of the in situ conservation of maize agrobiodiversity. Environment-development interactions both enabled smallholders' agrobiodiversity resilience and influenced the limits and vulnerability of agrobiodiversity. Scientific policy recommendations regarding land-use planning and sustainability analysis are targeted to specific Río+20 priorities for agrobiodiversity.

  5. Protecting biodiversity when money matters: maximizing return on investment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma C Underwood

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Conventional wisdom identifies biodiversity hotspots as priorities for conservation investment because they capture dense concentrations of species. However, density of species does not necessarily imply conservation 'efficiency'. Here we explicitly consider conservation efficiency in terms of species protected per dollar invested. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We apply a dynamic return on investment approach to a global biome and compare it with three alternate priority setting approaches and a random allocation of funding. After twenty years of acquiring habitat, the return on investment approach protects between 32% and 69% more species compared to the other priority setting approaches. To correct for potential inefficiencies of protecting the same species multiple times we account for the complementarity of species, protecting up to three times more distinct vertebrate species than alternate approaches. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Incorporating costs in a return on investment framework expands priorities to include areas not traditionally highlighted as priorities based on conventional irreplaceability and vulnerability approaches.

  6. Wildlife-vehicle collision hotspots at US highway extents: scale and data source effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fraser M. Shilling

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Highways provide commuter traffic and goods movement among regions and cities through wild, protected areas. Wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVC can occur frequently when wildlife are present, impacting drivers and animals. Because collisions are often avoidable with constructed mitigation and reduced speeds, transportation agencies often want to know where they can act most effectively and what kinds of mitigation are cost-effective. For this study, WVC occurrences were obtained from two sources: 1 highway agencies that monitor carcass retrieval and disposal by agency maintenance staff and 2 opportunistic observations of carcasses by participants in two statewide systems, the California Roadkill Observation System (CROS; http://wildlifecrossing.net/california and the Maine Audubon Wildlife Road Watch (MAWRW; http://wildlifecrossing.net/maine. Between September, 2009 and December 31, 2014, >33,700 independent observations of >450 vertebrate species had been recorded in these online, form-based informatics systems by >1,300 observers. We asked whether or not WVC observations collected by these extensive, volunteer-science networks could be used to inform transportation-mitigation planning. Cluster analyses of volunteer-observed WVC were performed using spatial autocorrelation tests for parts or all of 34 state highways and interstates. Statistically-significant WVC hotspots were modeled using the Getis-Ord Gi* statistic. High density locations of WVC, that were not necessarily hotspots, were also visualized. Statistically-significant hotspots were identified along ~7,900 km of highways. These hotspots are shown to vary in position from year to year. For highways with frequent deer-vehicle collisions, annual costs from collisions ranged from US$0 to >US$30,000/km. Carcass clusters from volunteer data had very little or no overlap with similar findings from agency-collected WVC data, during a different time-range. We show that both state agency

  7. Spatial patterns of carbon, biodiversity, deforestation threat, and REDD+ projects in Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Josil P; Grenyer, Richard; Wunder, Sven; Raes, Niels; Jones, Julia P G

    2015-10-01

    There are concerns that Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) may fail to deliver potential biodiversity cobenefits if it is focused on high carbon areas. We explored the spatial overlaps between carbon stocks, biodiversity, projected deforestation threats, and the location of REDD+ projects in Indonesia, a tropical country at the forefront of REDD+ development. For biodiversity, we assembled data on the distribution of terrestrial vertebrates (ranges of amphibians, mammals, birds, reptiles) and plants (species distribution models for 8 families). We then investigated congruence between different measures of biodiversity richness and carbon stocks at the national and subnational scales. Finally, we mapped active REDD+ projects and investigated the carbon density and potential biodiversity richness and modeled deforestation pressures within these forests relative to protected areas and unprotected forests. There was little internal overlap among the different hotspots (richest 10% of cells) of species richness. There was also no consistent spatial congruence between carbon stocks and the biodiversity measures: a weak negative correlation at the national scale masked highly variable and nonlinear relationships island by island. Current REDD+ projects were preferentially located in areas with higher total species richness and threatened species richness but lower carbon densities than protected areas and unprotected forests. Although a quarter of the total area of these REDD+ projects is under relatively high deforestation pressure, the majority of the REDD+ area is not. In Indonesia at least, first-generation REDD+ projects are located where they are likely to deliver biodiversity benefits. However, if REDD+ is to deliver additional gains for climate and biodiversity, projects will need to focus on forests with the highest threat to deforestation, which will have cost implications for future REDD+ implementation. © 2015 The Authors

  8. The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariño Arturo H

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity of a country; (b the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a identifying

  9. The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to

  10. The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ariño, Arturo H; Chavan, Vishwas; King, Nick

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most nonparticipant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to contribute to filling gaps in digitized

  11. Assessment of multifaceted environmental issues and model development of an Indo-Burma hotspot region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rai, Prabhat Kumar

    2012-01-01

    The present article provides a multifaceted critical research review on environmental issues intimately related with the socio-economy of North East India (NE), a part of Indo-Burma hotspot. Further, the article addresses the issue of sustainable development of NE India through diverse ecological practices inextricably linked with traditional ecological knowledge (TEK). The biodiversity of NE India comprises endemic floral diversity, particularly medicinal plants of importance to pharmaceutical industry, and unique faunal diversity. Nevertheless, it is very unfortunate that this great land of biodiversity is least explored taxonomically as well as biotechnologically, probably due to geographical and political constraints. Different anthropogenic and socio-economic factors have perturbed the pristine ecology of this region, leading to environmental degradation. Also, the practice of unregulated shifting cultivation (jhooming), bamboo flowering, biological invasions and anthropogenic perturbations to biodiversity exacerbate the gloomy situation. Instead of a plethora of policies, the TEK of NE people may be integrated with modern scientific knowledge in order to conserve the environment which is the strong pillar for socio-economic sector here. The aforesaid approach can be practiced in NE India through the broad implementation and extension of agroforestry practices. Further, case studies on Apatanis, ethnomedicinal plants use by indigenous tribal groups and sacred forests are particularly relevant in the context of conservation of environmental health in totality while addressing the socioeconomic impact as well. In context with the prevailing scenarios in this region, we developed an eco-sustainable model for natural resource management through agroforestry practices in order to uplift the social as well as environmental framework.

  12. Transportation conformity particulate matter hot-spot air quality modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-01

    In light of the new development in particulate matter (PM) hot-spot regulations and Illinois Department : of Transportation (IDOT)s National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) documentation requirements, : this project is intended to (1) perform and ...

  13. Elevational sensitivity in an Asian 'hotspot': moth diversity across elevational gradients in tropical, sub-tropical and sub-alpine China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashton, L A; Nakamura, A; Burwell, C J; Tang, Y; Cao, M; Whitaker, T; Sun, Z; Huang, H; Kitching, R L

    2016-05-23

    South-western China is widely acknowledged as a biodiversity 'hotspot': there are high levels of diversity and endemism, and many environments are under significant anthropogenic threats not least climate warming. Here, we explore diversity and compare response patterns of moth assemblages among three elevational gradients established within different climatic bioregions - tropical rain forest, sub-tropical evergreen broad-leaved forest and sub-alpine coniferous forest in Yunnan Province, China. We hypothesised that tropical assemblages would be more elevationally stratified than temperate assemblages, and tropical species would be more elevationally restricted than those in the temperate zone. Contrary to our hypothesis, the moth fauna was more sensitive to elevational differences within the temperate transect, followed by sub-tropical and tropical transects. Moths in the cooler and more seasonal temperate sub-alpine gradient showed stronger elevation-decay beta diversity patterns, and more species were restricted to particular elevational ranges. Our study suggests that moth assemblages are under threat from future climate change and sub-alpine rather than tropical faunas may be the most sensitive to climate change. These results improve our understanding of China's biodiversity and can be used to monitor future changes to herbivore assemblages in a 'hotspot' of biodiversity.

  14. Investigating avian influenza infection hotspots in old-world shorebirds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Gaidet

    Full Text Available Heterogeneity in the transmission rates of pathogens across hosts or environments may produce disease hotspots, which are defined as specific sites, times or species associations in which the infection rate is consistently elevated. Hotspots for avian influenza virus (AIV in wild birds are largely unstudied and poorly understood. A striking feature is the existence of a unique but consistent AIV hotspot in shorebirds (Charadriiformes associated with a single species at a specific location and time (ruddy turnstone Arenaria interpres at Delaware Bay, USA, in May. This unique case, though a valuable reference, limits our capacity to explore and understand the general properties of AIV hotspots in shorebirds. Unfortunately, relatively few shorebirds have been sampled outside Delaware Bay and they belong to only a few shorebird families; there also has been a lack of consistent oropharyngeal sampling as a complement to cloacal sampling. In this study we looked for AIV hotspots associated with other shorebird species and/or with some of the larger congregation sites of shorebirds in the old world. We assembled and analysed a regionally extensive dataset of AIV prevalence from 69 shorebird species sampled in 25 countries across Africa and Western Eurasia. Despite this diverse and extensive coverage we did not detect any new shorebird AIV hotspots. Neither large shorebird congregation sites nor the ruddy turnstone were consistently associated with AIV hotspots. We did, however, find a low but widespread circulation of AIV in shorebirds that contrast with the absence of AIV previously reported in shorebirds in Europe. A very high AIV antibody prevalence coupled to a low infection rate was found in both first-year and adult birds of two migratory sandpiper species, suggesting the potential existence of an AIV hotspot along their migratory flyway that is yet to be discovered.

  15. Fish-derived nutrient hotspots shape coral reef benthic communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shantz, Andrew A; Ladd, Mark C; Schrack, Elizabeth; Burkepile, Deron E

    2015-12-01

    Animal-derived nutrients play an important role in structuring nutrient regimes within and between ecosystems. When animals undergo repetitive, aggregating behavior through time, they can create nutrient hotspots where rates of biogeochemical activity are higher than those found in the surrounding environment. In turn, these hotspots can influence ecosystem processes and community structure. We examined the potential for reef fishes from the family Haemulidae (grunts) to create nutrient hotspots and the potential impact of these hotspots on reef communities. To do so, we tracked the schooling locations of diurnally migrating grunts, which shelter at reef sites during the day but forage off reef each night, and measured the impact of these fish schools on benthic communities. We found that grunt schools showed a high degree of site fidelity, repeatedly returning to the same coral heads. These aggregations created nutrient hotspots around coral heads where nitrogen and phosphorus delivery was roughly 10 and 7 times the respective rates of delivery to structurally similar sites that lacked schools of these fishes. In turn, grazing rates of herbivorous fishes at grunt-derived hotspots were approximately 3 times those of sites where grunts were rare. These differences in nutrient delivery and grazing led to distinct benthic communities with higher cover of crustose coralline algae and less total algal abundance at grunt aggregation sites. Importantly, coral growth was roughly 1.5 times greater at grunt hotspots, likely due to the important nutrient subsidy. Our results suggest that schooling reef fish and their nutrient subsidies play an important role in mediating community structure on coral reefs and that overfishing may have important negative consequences on ecosystem functions. As such, management strategies must consider mesopredatory fishes in addition to current protection often offered to herbivores and top-tier predators. Furthermore, our results suggest that

  16. Population demographic history can cause the appearance of recombination hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Henry R; Cutler, David J

    2012-05-04

    Although the prevailing view among geneticists suggests that recombination hotspots exist ubiquitously across the human genome, there is only limited experimental evidence from a few genomic regions to support the generality of this claim. A small number of true recombination hotspots are well supported experimentally, but the vast majority of hotspots have been identified on the basis of population genetic inferences from the patterns of linkage disequilibrium (LD) seen in the human population. These inferences are made assuming a particular model of human history, and one of the assumptions of that model is that the effective population size of humans has remained constant throughout our history. Our results show that relaxation of the constant population size assumption can create LD and variation patterns that are qualitatively and quantitatively similar to human populations without any need to invoke localized hotspots of recombination. In other words, apparent recombination hotspots could be an artifact of variable population size over time. Several lines of evidence suggest that the vast majority of hotspots identified on the basis of LD information are unlikely to have elevated recombination rates. Copyright © 2012 The American Society of Human Genetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Hotspots Detection in Photovoltaic Modules Using Infrared Thermography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salazar April M.

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available An increased interest on generating power from renewable sources has led to an increase in solar photovoltaic (PV system installations worldwide. Power generation of such systems is affected by factors that can be identified early on through efficient monitoring techniques. This study developed a non-invasive technique that can detect localized heating and quantify the area of the hotspots, a potential cause of degradation in photovoltaic systems. This is done by the use of infrared thermography, a well-accepted non-destructive evaluation technique that allows contactless, real-time inspection. In this approach, thermal images or thermograms of an operating PV module were taken using an infrared camera. These thermograms were analyzed by a Hotspot Detection algorithm implemented in MATLAB. Prior to image processing, images were converted to CIE L*a*b color space making k-means clustering implementation computationally efficient. K-means clustering is an iterative technique that segments data into k clusters which was used to isolate hotspots. The devised algorithm detected hotspots in the modules being observed. In addition, average temperature and relative area is provided to quantify the hotspot. Various features and conditions leading to hotspots such as crack, junction box and shading were investigated in this study.

  18. Getting the measure of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purvis, A; Hector, A

    2000-05-11

    The term 'biodiversity' is a simple contraction of 'biological diversity', and at first sight the concept is simple too: biodiversity is the sum total of all biotic variation from the level of genes to ecosystems. The challenge comes in measuring such a broad concept in ways that are useful. We show that, although biodiversity can never be fully captured by a single number, study of particular facets has led to rapid, exciting and sometimes alarming discoveries. Phylogenetic and temporal analyses are shedding light on the ecological and evolutionary processes that have shaped current biodiversity. There is no doubt that humans are now destroying this diversity at an alarming rate. A vital question now being tackled is how badly this loss affects ecosystem functioning. Although current research efforts are impressive, they are tiny in comparison to the amount of unknown diversity and the urgency and importance of the task.

  19. Economic inequality predicts biodiversity loss.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory M Mikkelson

    Full Text Available Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation.

  20. Arctic Terrestrial Biodiversity Monitoring Plan

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Tom; Payne, J.; Doyle, M.

    The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), the biodiversity working group of the Arctic Council, established the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP) to address the need for coordinated and standardized monitoring of Arctic environments. The CBMP includes an international...... on developing and implementing long-term plans for monitoring the integrity of Arctic biomes: terrestrial, marine, freshwater, and coastal (under development) environments. The CBMP Terrestrial Expert Monitoring Group (CBMP-TEMG) has developed the Arctic Terrestrial Biodiversity Monitoring Plan (CBMP......-Terrestrial Plan/the Plan) as the framework for coordinated, long-term Arctic terrestrial biodiversity monitoring. The goal of the CBMP-Terrestrial Plan is to improve the collective ability of Arctic traditional knowledge (TK) holders, northern communities, and scientists to detect, understand and report on long...

  1. MCBS Sites of Biodiversity Significance

    Data.gov (United States)

    Minnesota Department of Natural Resources — This data layer represents areas with varying levels of native biodiversity that may contain high quality native plant communities, rare plants, rare animals, and/or...

  2. Fungal biodiversity to biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambergo, Felipe S; Valencia, Estela Y

    2016-03-01

    Fungal habitats include soil, water, and extreme environments. With around 100,000 fungus species already described, it is estimated that 5.1 million fungus species exist on our planet, making fungi one of the largest and most diverse kingdoms of eukaryotes. Fungi show remarkable metabolic features due to a sophisticated genomic network and are important for the production of biotechnological compounds that greatly impact our society in many ways. In this review, we present the current state of knowledge on fungal biodiversity, with special emphasis on filamentous fungi and the most recent discoveries in the field of identification and production of biotechnological compounds. More than 250 fungus species have been studied to produce these biotechnological compounds. This review focuses on three of the branches generally accepted in biotechnological applications, which have been identified by a color code: red, green, and white for pharmaceutical, agricultural, and industrial biotechnology, respectively. We also discuss future prospects for the use of filamentous fungi in biotechnology application.

  3. Biodiversity versus cloning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaramillo T, Jose Hernan

    1998-01-01

    The announcement has been made on the cloning of mice in these days and he doesn't stop to miss, because the world lives a stage where conscience of the protection is creating that should be given to the biodiversity. It is known that alone we won't subsist and the protection of the means and all that contains that environment is of vital importance for the man. But it is also known that the vegetables and animal transgenic that they come to multiply the species have appeared that we prepare. The transgenic has been altered genetically, for substitution of one or more genes of other species, inclusive human genes. This represents an improvement compared with the investigations that gave origin to the cloning animal. But it is necessary to notice that to it you arrived through the cloning. This year 28 million hectares have been sowed in cultivations of transgenic seeds and there is around 700 bovine transgenic whose milk contains a necessary protein in the treatment of the man's illnesses

  4. Filling in biodiversity threat gaps

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joppa, L. N.; O'Connor, Brian; Visconti, Piero

    2016-01-01

    increase to 10,000 times the background rate should species threatened with extinction succumb to pressures they face (4). Reversing these trends is a focus of the Convention on Biological Diversity's 2020 Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and its 20 Aichi Targets and is explicitly incorporated...... into the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We identify major gaps in data available for assessing global biodiversity threats and suggest mechanisms for closing them....

  5. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Checklist of the fishes of the Achankovil forests, Kerala, India with notes on the range extension of an endemic cyprinid Puntius chalakkudiensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Baby

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available We report the results of an ichthyofaunal inventory carried out in the Achankovil Reserve Forest in the southern Western Ghats as part of a Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund Project on lesser known freshwater fishes of Kerala . Forty-six species of freshwater fish, belonging to 17 families and 31 genera were collected from 11 sites inside the Achankovil Reserve Forest. Family Cyprinidae dominated with 21 species, followed by Bagridae, Balitoridae and Channidae (three species each. Out of the 46 species, 14 were endemic to the Western Ghats, three were endemic to Kerala region and one was exotic to the country. In this paper, we also report the range extension of an endemic cyprinid, Puntius chalakkudiensis to the Achankovil River and the Achankovil Reserve Forest. The fish diversity of this region is higher than many protected areas within southern Western Ghats, and stresses the need for immediate protection and monitoring programs.

  6. Paleocene on-spreading-axis hotspot volcanism along the Ninetyeast Ridge: An interaction between the Kerguelen hotspot and the Wharton spreading center

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Krishna, K.S.; Gopala Rao, D.; SubbaRaju, L.V.; Chaubey, A.K.; Shcherbakov, V.S.; Pilipenko, A.I.; Murthy, I.V.R.

    Investigations of three plausible tectonic settings of the Kerguelen hotspot relative to the Wharton spreading center evoke the on-spreading-axis hotspot volcanism of Paleocene (60-54 Ma) age along the Ninetyeast Ridge. The hypothesis is consistent...

  7. Diversity, Biodiversity, Conservation, and Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joao Carlos Marques

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available The concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed regarding their historical emergence, and their intrinsic meaning and differences are discussed. Through a brief synopsis, difficulties usually experienced by statisticians in capturing the dynamics of diversity are analysed and main problems identified. The shift from diversity to the more holistic biodiversity as a working concept is appraised in terms of the novelty involved. Through a number of examples, the way the two concepts capture natural cyclic changes is analysed, and their reciprocal and complementary relations are approached theoretically. The way diversity could develop from the stores of biodiversity as its active expression through selective and evolutionary processes is described. Through the use of a very simple dynamic model, the concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed in extremely opposite hypothetical scenarios. Comparisons with natural situations are made and the theoretical implications from the conservation point of view are discussed. These support the opinion that conservation undertaken in restricted and protected areas is not self-sustainable, needing permanent external intervention to regulate internal processes, and in the long run will most probably lead in the direction of obsolescence and extinction. Finally, the relations between diversity, biodiversity, and sustainability are approached. The vagueness of the sustainability concept is discussed. Preservation of biodiversity is then defended as one of the best available indicators to assist us in fixing boundaries which may help to provide a more precise definition of sustainability.

  8. Tree diversity in the tropical dry forest of Bannerghatta National Park in Eastern Ghats, Southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gopalakrishna S. Puttakame

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Tree species inventories, particularly of poorly known dry deciduous forests, are needed to protect and restore forests in degraded landscapes. A study of forest stand structure, and species diversity and density of trees with girth at breast height (GBH ≥10 cm was conducted in four management zones of Bannerghatta National Park (BNP in the Eastern Ghats of Southern India. We identified 128 tree species belonging to 45 families in 7.9 hectares. However, 44 species were represented by ≤ 2 individuals. Mean diversity values per site for the dry forest of BNP were: tree composition (23.8 ±7.6, plant density (100.69 ± 40.02, species diversity (2.56 ± 0.44 and species richness (10.48 ± 4.05. Tree diversity was not significantly different (P>0.05 across the four management zones in the park. However, the number of tree species identified significantly (P<0.05 increased with increasing number of sampling sites, but majority of the species were captured. Similarly, there were significant variations (p<0.05 between tree diameter class distributions. Juveniles accounted for 87% of the tree population. The structure of the forest was not homogeneous, with sections ranging from poorly structured to highly stratified configurations. The study suggests that there was moderate tree diversity in the tropical dry thorn forest of Bannerghatta National Park, but the forest was relatively young.

  9. Decadal Variation in the Rainfall Characteristics over River Basins across the Western Ghats of India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhat, R.; Gouda, K. C.; Murthy, A.; Prabhuraj, D. K.; Laxmikantha, B. P.

    2012-12-01

    Rainfall over a river basin have high impact on the human life in the coastal region, in particular during monsoon season. In the present work the rainfall characteristics over Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka, India is studied in decadal to annual scale. The specialty of the district is, here a network of five river basins exist and all rivers flow into the Arabian Sea in the west coast of India. Being a part of the Western Ghats region all these rivers have different hydrological and geological properties. All the rivers are mainly rain fed in nature. The Significant uncertainties in annual precipitation and extreme precipitation events over the basin are due to the uncertainties in the atmospheric parameters like temperature, offshore wind, humidity etc. In this study, TRMM, GPCP and India Meteorological Department (IMD) measured rainfall data were used to analyze the decadal rainfall analysis over the basin. It is found that the overall trend of rainfall is decreasing from 1951 to 2000 where as the monsoon (June-September) rainfall seems to be normal. The extreme rainfall events seem to have increased in the recent decade compare to the earlier decades. The rainfall decreases towards East compared to the west part of the basin. The surface water potential, evapo transpiration, soil temperature, soil moisture of the basin is studied and empirical relation with the rainfall presented in this work.

  10. Edible wild mushrooms of the Western Ghats: Data on the ethnic knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Namera C. Karun

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The edible wild mushrooms are most important in food security of ethnic groups and tribals throughout the world. Various indigenous strategies are followed to trace wild mushrooms suitable for human consumption. Data presented in this article projects ethnic knowledge on 51 edible wild mushrooms (in 23 genera in the Western Ghats region of India. Information collected with support of ethnic groups/tribals pertains to habitats, substrates, mutualistic association, extent of availability, extent of edibility and method of processing of wild mushrooms. Extensive field visits and interactions with ethnic groups were performed to collect the data on each mushroom. Initially, most of these mushrooms were identified based on the indigenous methods and designated with vernacular names (Are-Gowda, Kodava and Tulu. Based on macromorphology (in field and micromorphology (in laboratory, each mushroom was identified with its systematic name. Among the 51 wild mushrooms irrespective of extent of availability, the most preferred include Astraeus hygrometricus, Clitocybe infundibuliformis, Fistulina hepatica, Lentinus sajor-caju, Pleurotus (5 spp. and Scleroderma citrinum and Termitomyces (18 spp.. This data forecasts the importance of documentation of traditional knowledge, protection of habitats, management of resources (tree species and substrates and sustainable exploitation of wild mushrooms.

  11. Molecular systematics of caeciliid caecilians (Amphibia: Gymnophiona) of the Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gower, David J; San Mauro, Diego; Giri, Varad; Bhatta, Gopalakrishna; Govindappa, Venu; Kotharambath, Ramachandran; Oommen, Oommen V; Fatih, Farrah A; Mackenzie-Dodds, Jacqueline A; Nussbaum, Ronald A; Biju, S D; Shouche, Yogesh S; Wilkinson, Mark

    2011-06-01

    Together, Indian plus Seychelles caeciliid caecilian amphibians (Gymnophiona) constitute approximately 10% of the extant species of this order. A molecular phylogenetic analysis of all but one (or two) nominal species (16, in five genera) is presented based on mitochondrial (12S, 16S, cytb, cox1) and nuclear (RAG1) sequence data. Results strongly support monophyly of both Seychelles and peninsular Indian caeciliids, and their sister-group status. Within the Indian caeciliids, Indotyphlus and Gegeneophis are monophyletic sister genera. The phylogenetic position of Gegeneophis ramaswamii, Gegeneophis seshachari, and Gegeneophis carnosus are not well resolved, but all lie outside a well-supported clade of most northern Western Ghats Gegeneophis (madhavai, mhadeiensis, goaensis, danieli/nadkarnii). Most nominal species of Indian caeciliid are diagnosed by robust haplotype clades, though the systematics of G. carnosus-like forms in northern Kerala and southern Karnataka requires substantial further investigation. For the most part, Indian caeciliid species comprise narrowly distributed, allopatric taxa with low genetic diversity. Much greater geographic genetic diversity exists among populations referred to G. seshachari, such that some populations likely represent undescribed species. This, the first phylogenetic analysis of Indian caeciliids, generally provides additional support for recent increases in described species (eight since 1999), and a framework for ongoing taxonomic revision. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Fishes of River Bharathapuzha, Kerala, India: diversity, distribution, threats and conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Bijukumar

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available We present here a comprehensive account of the diversity, distribution, threats, and suggest conservation measures for the fishes of Bharathapuzha, the largest west flowing river in the southern Indian state of Kerala. A total of 117 species under 43 families and 81 genera were recorded from the river, of which 98 were primary freshwater and 19 were secondary freshwater and/or diadromous species. Six species of non-native fish were also recorded, of which three were exotic to the country and three were transplanted from the gangetic plains. Twenty-eight percent (S = 33 of species that occur in the Bharathapuzha are endemic to the Western Ghats, while three species (Balitora jalpalli, Mesonoemacheilus remadevii and Pseudolaguvia austrina are restricted in their distribution to the river system. A little more than one-tenth (11%; S = 13 of species that occur in the river are listed under various threatened categories on the IUCN Red List. As part of this study, we also extend the distribution range of Osteochilichthys longidorsalis to the Bharathapuzha River system, based on its collection from the Thoothapuzha tributary. Several anthropogenic stressors including deforestation and loss of riparian cover, dams and other impoundments, pollution, sand mining, non-native species and destructive fishing practices are threatening the rich ichthyofaunal diversity and endemism in the Bharathapuzha. There is hence an urgent need to develop and implement conservation plans, some of which are discussed.

  13. Alternative energy sources from plants of Western Ghats (Tamil Nadu, India)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Augustus, G.D.P.S.; Jayabalan, M. [V.H.N.S.N College, Virudhunagar (India). Research Centre in Botany; Seiler, G.J. [USDA-ARS, Northern Crop Science Lab., Fargo, ND (United States)

    2003-06-01

    Twenty-two taxa of Western Ghats plants were screened as potential alternative crops for renewable energy, oil, hydrocarbon and phytochemicals. The highest hydrocarbon yields were observed in Carissa carandas (1.7%), and Jatropha gossypifolia (1.7%). The highest polyphenol fraction was observed in Dodonaea viscosa (17.1%), Carissa carandas (7.7%), Swietenia mahagoni (6.6%), and Jatropha glandulifera (6.2%). The highest oil content was observed in Aganosma cymosa (10.3%), Carissa carandas (5.8%), and Argemone mexicana (5.0%). Swietenia mahagoni yielded the highest protein content with 8.1%. The gross heat value of 4175.0 cal/g(17.5 MJ/kg) for Lochnera rosea (pink flowered var.), and 4112.0 cal/g for Dalbergia sissoo were the highest among the species analysed. NMR spectra of the hydrocarbon fractions of Alstonia scholaris, Carissa carandas, Ichnocarpus frutescens, Plumeria rubra, Thevetia neriifolia (white flowered var.), Vallaris solanacea, Lochnera rosea (pink flowered var.), Euphorbia hirta, E. splendens, Artocarpus integrifolia and Ficus religiosa revealed the presence of cis-polyisoprene (natural rubber), whereas Argemone mexicana showed the presence of trans-polyisoprene (gutta). Several new crop species were identified with potentially useful compounds. The potential exists for growing these alternate crops in areas of under-utilized lands, subsequently stimulating industrial and economic growth. (author)

  14. Antiplasmodial potential of selected medicinal plants from eastern Ghats of South India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushik, Naveen Kumar; Bagavan, Asokan; Rahuman, Abdul Abdul; Mohanakrishnan, Dinesh; Kamaraj, Chinnaperumal; Elango, Gandhi; Zahir, Abdul Abduz; Sahal, Dinkar

    2013-05-01

    Malaria caused by the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum, is a major health problem of the developing world. In the present study medicinal plants from Eastern Ghats of South India have been extracted with ethyl acetate and assayed for growth inhibition of asexual erythrocytic stages of chloroquine (CQ)-sensitive (3D7) and (CQ)-resistant (INDO) strains of P. falciparum in culture using the fluorescence-based SYBR Green I assay. Studied extracts showed a spectrum of antiplasmodial activities ranging from (a) very good (IC(50)10-15 μg/mL: Ficus religiosa and Murraya koenigii); (c) moderate (IC(50)>15-25 μg/mL: Ficus benghalensis); (d) poor activity (IC(50)>25-60 μg/mL) and (e) inactive (IC(50)>60 μg/mL). Resistance indices ranging from 0.78 to 1.28 suggest that some of these extracts had equal promise against the CQ resistant INDO strain of P. falciparum. Cytotoxicity assessment of the extracts against HeLa cell line using MTT assay revealed that the selectivity indices in the range of 3-15 suggesting a good margin of safety. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Edible wild mushrooms of the Western Ghats: Data on the ethnic knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karun, Namera C; Sridhar, Kandikere R

    2017-10-01

    The edible wild mushrooms are most important in food security of ethnic groups and tribals throughout the world. Various indigenous strategies are followed to trace wild mushrooms suitable for human consumption. Data presented in this article projects ethnic knowledge on 51 edible wild mushrooms (in 23 genera) in the Western Ghats region of India. Information collected with support of ethnic groups/tribals pertains to habitats, substrates, mutualistic association, extent of availability, extent of edibility and method of processing of wild mushrooms. Extensive field visits and interactions with ethnic groups were performed to collect the data on each mushroom. Initially, most of these mushrooms were identified based on the indigenous methods and designated with vernacular names (Are-Gowda, Kodava and Tulu). Based on macromorphology (in field) and micromorphology (in laboratory), each mushroom was identified with its systematic name. Among the 51 wild mushrooms irrespective of extent of availability, the most preferred include Astraeus hygrometricus, Clitocybe infundibuliformis, Fistulina hepatica, Lentinus sajor-caju, Pleurotus (5 spp.) and Scleroderma citrinum and Termitomyces (18 spp.). This data forecasts the importance of documentation of traditional knowledge, protection of habitats, management of resources (tree species and substrates) and sustainable exploitation of wild mushrooms.

  16. Biodiversity impact assessment (BIA+) - methodological framework for screening biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Lisa; Pflugmacher, Stephan; Berger, Markus; Finkbeiner, Matthias

    2018-03-01

    For the past 20 years, the life cycle assessment (LCA) community has sought to integrate impacts on biodiversity into the LCA framework. However, existing impact assessment methods still fail to do so comprehensively because they quantify only a few impacts related to specific species and regions. This paper proposes a methodological framework that will allow LCA practitioners to assess currently missing impacts on biodiversity on a global scale. Building on existing models that seek to quantify the impacts of human activities on biodiversity, the herein proposed methodological framework consists of 2 components: a habitat factor for 14 major habitat types and the impact on the biodiversity status in those major habitat types. The habitat factor is calculated by means of indicators that characterize each habitat. The biodiversity status depends on parameters from impact categories. The impact functions, relating these different parameters to a given response in the biodiversity status, rely on expert judgments. To ensure the applicability for LCA practitioners, the components of the framework can be regionalized on a country scale for which LCA inventory data is more readily available. The weighting factors for the 14 major habitat types range from 0.63 to 1.82. By means of area weighting of the major habitat types in a country, country-specific weighting factors are calculated. In order to demonstrate the main part of the framework, examples of impact functions are given for the categories "freshwater eutrophication" and "freshwater ecotoxicity" in 1 major habitat type. The results confirm suitability of the methodological framework. The major advantages are the framework's user-friendliness, given that data can be used from LCA databases directly, and the complete inclusion of all levels of biodiversity (genetic, species, and ecosystem). It is applicable for the whole world and a wide range of impact categories. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2018;14:282-297.

  17. Biodiversity Risks from Atmospheric Nitrogen Deposition in California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, S. B.

    2004-12-01

    Atmospheric nitrogen deposition alters structure and function of terrestrial ecosystems, because nitrogen availability is often limits overall productivity. These alterations can drive losses of biodiversity, as nitrophilous species increase in abundance and outcompete species adapted to more oligotrophic conditions. California is recognized as a "biodiversity hotspot," with a high fraction of endemic taxa with narrow ranges. A state-wide risk screening includes: 1) a 36 x 36 km map of total N-deposition for 2002, developed from the Community Multiscale Air Quality Model (CMAQ); 2) identification of sensitive habitat types from literature and local expertise; 3) overlay of a statewide vegetation map (FRAP); 4) overlay of species occurrence data from the California Natural Diversity Data Base (CNDDB); and 5)species life-history and habitat requirements. The CMAQ model indicates that 55,000 km2 (total area 405,205 km2) are exposed to >5 kg-N ha -1 year -1, and 10,000 km2 are exposed to >10 kg-N ha -1 year -1. Deposition hotspots include coastal urban areas (Los Angeles-San Diego, and the San Francisco Bay Area), the agricultural Central Valley, and parts of the Sierra Nevada foothills. The major known impact of N-deposition in California is increased growth and dominance of invasive annual grasses in low biomass ecosystems, such as coastal sage scrub, serpentine grassland, desert scrub, and vernal pools. For example, 800 km2 out of a total 6300 km2 of coastal sage scrub are exposed to more than 10 kg-N ha -1 year -1, primarily in Southern California. Of 225 federal and state "Threatened" and "Endangered" plant taxa, 101 are exposed on average to >5 kg-N ha -1 year -1. Of an additional 1022 plant taxa listed as "rare," 288 are exposed to >5 kg-N ha -1 year -1. Many of these highly exposed taxa are associated with sensitive habitat types and are vulnerable to annual grass invasions. This broad-scale screening outlines potential impacts on California's biodiversity, and

  18. Marine biodiversity characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boeuf, Gilles

    2011-05-01

    Oceans contain the largest living volume of the "blue" planet, inhabited by approximately 235-250,000 described species, all groups included. They only represent some 13% of the known species on the Earth, but the marine biomasses are really huge. Marine phytoplankton alone represents half the production of organic matter on Earth while marine bacteria represent more than 10%. Life first appeared in the oceans more than 3.8 billion years ago and several determining events took place that changed the course of life, ranging from the development of the cell nucleus to sexual reproduction going through multi-cellular organisms and the capture of organelles. Of the 31 animal phyla currently listed, 12 are exclusively marine phyla and have never left the ocean. An interesting question is to try to understand why there are so few marine species versus land species? This pattern of distribution seems pretty recent in the course of Evolution. From an exclusively marine world, since the beginning until 440 million years ago, land number of species much increased 110 million years ago. Specific diversity and ancestral roles, in addition to organizational models and original behaviors, have made marine organisms excellent reservoirs for identifying and extracting molecules (>15,000 today) with pharmacological potential. They also make particularly relevant models for both fundamental and applied research. Some marine models have been the source of essential discoveries in life sciences. From this diversity, the ocean provides humankind with renewable resources, which are highly threatened today and need more adequate management to preserve ocean habitats, stocks and biodiversity. Copyright © 2011 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  19. Gamma scanner for radiation hotspot imaging and nuclide identification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patkulkar, D.S.; Salam, Abdul; Birje, H.B.; Purohit, R.G.; Sarkar, P.K.

    2012-01-01

    Presence of radiation hotspots in operating areas of a nuclear facility is of great concern to a Health Physicist as unidentified hotspots can lead to unexpected higher exposures of radiation workers. Effective dose management requires locating hotspots, nuclide identification and root cause analysis of its formation. This information is useful in deciding and implementing effective action plan and preventing hotspot reappearance. Surveys with existing portable survey instruments result in exposure of the surveyor and there are chances of skipping high radiation spots. Moreover, these do not have facility for nuclide analysis (except for few instruments such as NaI:Tl based Field Spec identifier which can identify certain radionuclides but has a poor resolution). Semiconductor based Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CZT) RoSCAN gamma imager which can be operated at room temperature was procured by Health Physics Division. It has a capability of locating radiation hotspots and identification of contributing radio nuclides. This instrument being first of its kind in our country, detailed performance evaluation of the instrument was carried out systematically using standard gamma radiation sources in laboratory conditions for arriving at its optimum settings for desired results. The instrument was also used in a few nuclear facilities. Systematic data collected has helped performance evaluation of the gamma imager over a wide gamma energy range of interest for hotspot identification and nuclide analysis has been carried out at Bhabha Atomic Research Centre. Field surveys conducted have helped in confirming optimum settings and minimum time of spectrum acquisition so as to implement ALARA during surveys. With the optimised settings, this instrument can be used in locating radiation hotspots in nuclear facilities and analysing radionuclide contents

  20. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bateman, Ian J; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad'ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R

    2015-06-16

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing--and to-date insufficient--approaches to conservation.

  1. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bateman, Ian J.; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad’ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing—and to-date insufficient—approaches to conservation. PMID:26077906

  2. Conserving Biogeography: Habitat Loss and Vicariant Patterns in Endemic Squamates of the Cerrado Hotspot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Mello, Pietro L H; Machado, Ricardo B; Nogueira, Cristiano de C

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the threat levels and impacts of habitat loss over the Cerrado Squamate fauna. The region is under severe habitat loss due to mechanized agriculture, accelerated by changes in the Brazilian National Forest Code. The Squamate fauna of the Cerrado is rich in endemics and is intrinsically associated with its surrounding microhabitats, which make up a mosaic of phitophysiognomies throughout the region. Herein we evaluate current conservation status of Squamate biogeographic patterns in the Brazilian Cerrado, the single savanna among global biodiversity hotspots. To do so, we first updated point locality data on 49 endemic Squamates pertaining to seven non-random clusters of species ranges in the Cerrado. Each cluster was assumed to be representative of different biogeographic regions, holding its own set of species, herein mapped according to their extent of occurrence (EOO). We then contrasted these data in four different scenarios, according to the presence or absence of habitat loss and the presence or absence of the current protected area (PA) cover. We searched for non-random patterns of habitat loss and PA coverage among these biogeographic regions throughout the Cerrado. Finally, with the species EOO as biodiversity layers, we used Zonation to discuss contemporary PA distribution, as well as to highlight current priority areas for conservation within the Cerrado. We ran Zonation under all four conservation scenarios mentioned above. We observed that habitat loss and PA coverage significantly differed between biogeographic regions. The southernmost biogeographic region is the least protected and the most impacted, with priority areas highly scattered in small, disjunct fragments. The northernmost biogeographic region (Tocantins-Serra Geral) is the most protected and least impacted, showing extensive priority areas in all Zonation scenarios. Therefore, current and past deforestation trends are severely threatening biogeographic patterns in

  3. Evolution, plant breeding and biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Ceccarelli

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with changes in biodiversity during the course of evolution, plant domestication and plant breeding. It shows than man has had a strong influence on the progressive decrease of biodiversity, unconscious at first and deliberate in modern times. The decrease in biodiversity in the agricultures of the North causes a severe threat to food security and is in contrasts with the conservation of biodiversity which is part of the culture of several populations in the South. The concluding section of the paper shows that man could have guided evolution in a different way and shows an example of participatory plant breeding, a type of breeding which is done in collaboration with farmers and is based on selection for specific adaptation. Even though participatory plant breeding has been practiced for only about 20 years and by relatively few groups, the effects on both biodiversity and crop production are impressive. Eventually the paper shows how participatory plant breeding can be developed into ‘evolutionary plant breeding’ to cope in a dynamic way with climate changes.

  4. Global Adjoint Tomography - Hotspots and Slabs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruan, Y.; Lei, W.; Lefebvre, M. P.; Modrak, R. T.; Smith, J. A.; Orsvuran, R.; Bozdag, E.; Tromp, J.

    2017-12-01

    Plumes rise from the deep mantle due to thermal or/and chemical buoyancy, forming hotspots at the surface, and oceanic plates subduct underneath continents, piling up at discontinuities or sinking down to the core-mantle boundary. Despite these basic convection mechanisms, many questions remain about the origin of mantle plumes, slab subduction, their interaction with mantle convection, and their relationship with the large low shear velocity provinces (LLSVPs) at the base of the mantle. Plume and slab morphology at depth provide further insight into these questions but imaging them in the mid and lower mantle is known to be very challenging due to a lack of data coverage and resolvability limits of conventional body-wave traveltime tomography. The deployment of regional dense arrays (e.g., USArray) and development of full waveform inversion techniques provide opportunities to resolve finer 3D details of mantle plumes and slabs. Harnessing the power of supercomputer ''Titan'' at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, we employed a spectral-element method to accurately simulate seismograms in complex 3D Earth models and an adjoint method to obtain model updates. Bozdag et al. (2016) iteratively determined a transversely isotropic earth model (GLAD_M15) using 253 events. To achieve higher resolution and better coverage in the deep mantle, we expanded our database to 1,040 events; a 1/3 of them are deep earthquakes (>500 km). We reinverted source parameters using model GLAD_M15, recalculated synthetic seismograms, selected time windows that show good agreement between data and the synthetics, and made measurements within these windows. From the measurements, we further assess the overall quality of each event and station and exclude bad measurements using very conservative criteria. Thus far, we assimilated more than 10 million windows in three period bands from 17-250 s. As the model improves, we correct the centroid time and scalar moment of each event using its mean

  5. Thermally-Driven Mantle Plumes Reconcile Hot-spot Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, D.; Davies, J.

    2008-12-01

    Hot-spots are anomalous regions of magmatism that cannot be directly associated with plate tectonic processes (e.g. Morgan, 1972). They are widely regarded as the surface expression of upwelling mantle plumes. Hot-spots exhibit variable life-spans, magmatic productivity and fixity (e.g. Ito and van Keken, 2007). This suggests that a wide-range of upwelling structures coexist within Earth's mantle, a view supported by geochemical and seismic evidence, but, thus far, not reproduced by numerical models. Here, results from a new, global, 3-D spherical, mantle convection model are presented, which better reconcile hot-spot observations, the key modification from previous models being increased convective vigor. Model upwellings show broad-ranging dynamics; some drift slowly, while others are more mobile, displaying variable life-spans, intensities and migration velocities. Such behavior is consistent with hot-spot observations, indicating that the mantle must be simulated at the correct vigor and in the appropriate geometry to reproduce Earth-like dynamics. Thermally-driven mantle plumes can explain the principal features of hot-spot volcanism on Earth.

  6. Urban lifestyle and urban biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, L. K.; Lyytimäki, J.; Normander, B.

    2007-01-01

    This report is concerned with the relations between lifestyles of urban populations on one hand and protection of biodiversity in urban areas on the other. Urban areas are of importance for the general protection of biodiversity. In the surroundings of cities and within urban sprawls there can...... be important habitats and valuable corridors for both common and less common species. At the same time a comprehensive, functional and viable green structure is important for urban populations to whom it serves many functions and offers a whole range of benefits. Urban green structure should serve both...... biodiversity, recreational, educational and other needs. However, uncovered and unsealed space is constantly under pressure for building and infrastructure development in the urban landscape, and the design and usages of urban green structure is a matter of differing interests and expectations. Integrating...

  7. Monitoring Biodiversity using Environmental DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Philip Francis

    DNA). Especially the advance in DNA sequencing technology has revolutionized this field and opened new frontiers in ecology, evolution and environmental sciences. Also, it is becoming a powerful tool for field biologist, with new and efficient methods for monitoring biodiversity. This thesis focuses on the use...... of eDNA in monitoring of biodiversity in different settings. First, it is shown that a diversity of rare freshwater animals – representing amphibians, fish, mammals, insects and crustaceans – can be detected based on eDNA obtained directly from 15 ml water samples of lakes, ponds and streams...... setting, showing that eDNA obtained directly from ½ l seawater samples can account for marine fish biodiversity using NGS. Promisingly, eDNA covered the fish diversity better than any of 9 methods, conventionally used in marine fish surveys. Additionally, it is shown that even short 100-bp. fish e...

  8. Statistical Characteristics of Convective Clouds over the Western Ghats Derived from Weather Radar Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utsav, Bhowmik; Deshpande, Sachin M.; Das, Subrata K.; Pandithurai, Govindan

    2017-09-01

    X-band radar observations at Mandhardev (18.04°N, 73.85°E) are used to investigate statistics of convective clouds over the Western Ghats during monsoon season (June-September 2014). Convective storms (cells) are identified using an objective-tracking method to examine their spatiotemporal variability, thus quantifying the time-continuous aspects of convective cloud population over the region for the first time. An increased frequency of storm location and initiation along the windward mountains compared to coastal and lee side highlights orographic response to southwesterly flow, with superimposed diurnal cycle. An eastward progression of convective activity from upstream the barrier through windward slopes of mountains over to the lee side is observed. Storm area, height, and duration follow lognormal distributions; wherein, small-sized storms contribute more to total population and unimodal distribution of 35 dBZ top heights (peaking at 5.5 km) depicts the dominance of shallow convection. Storms exhibit a pronounced diurnal cycle with a peak in afternoon hours, while the convective area maximum is delayed by several hours to that of precipitation flux. Cell lifetime and propagation show that cells move with slow speeds and have mean duration of 46 min. They align east-west nearly parallel to mountain ridges, and their direction of movement is steered mostly by large-scale winds at lower levels. Based on top heights, convective cells are further classified into cumulus, congestus, and deep clouds. In general, congestus (deep) cells are most abundant in the windward (leeward) side. A lead-lag relationship between congestus and deep cells indicates midtroposphere moistening by congestus cells prior to deep convection.

  9. Status and future transition of rapid urbanizing landscape in central Western Ghats - CA based approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bharath, S..; Rajan, K. S.; Ramachandra, T. V.

    2014-11-01

    The land use changes in forested landscape are highly complex and dynamic, affected by the natural, socio-economic, cultural, political and other factors. The remote sensing (RS) and geographical information system (GIS) techniques coupled with multi-criteria evaluation functions such as Markov-cellular automata (CA-Markov) model helps in analysing intensity, extent and future forecasting of human activities affecting the terrestrial biosphere. Karwar taluk of Central Western Ghats in Karnataka state, India has seen rapid transitions in its forest cover due to various anthropogenic activities, primarily driven by major industrial activities. A study based on Landsat and IRS derived data along with CA-Markov method has helped in characterizing the patterns and trends of land use changes over a period of 2004-2013, expected transitions was predicted for a set of scenarios through 2013-2022. The analysis reveals the loss of pristine forest cover from 75.51% to 67.36% (1973 to 2013) and increase in agriculture land as well as built-up area of 8.65% (2013), causing impact on local flora and fauna. The other factors driving these changes are the aggregated level of demand for land, local and regional effects of land use activities such as deforestation, improper practices in expansion of agriculture and infrastructure development, deteriorating natural resources availability. The spatio temporal models helped in visualizing on-going changes apart from prediction of likely changes. The CA-Markov based analysis provides us insights into the localized changes impacting these regions and can be useful in developing appropriate mitigation management approaches based on the modelled future impacts. This necessitates immediate measures for minimizing the future impacts.

  10. Interventions to reduce suicides at suicide hotspots: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Georgina R; Owens, Christabel; Robinson, Jo; Nicholas, Angela; Lockley, Anne; Williamson, Michelle; Cheung, Yee Tak Derek; Pirkis, Jane

    2013-03-09

    'Suicide hotspots' include tall structures (for example, bridges and cliffs), railway tracks, and isolated locations (for example, rural car parks) which offer direct means for suicide or seclusion that prevents intervention. We searched Medline for studies that could inform the following question: 'What interventions are available to reduce suicides at hotspots, and are they effective?' There are four main approaches: (a) restricting access to means (through installation of physical barriers); (b) encouraging help-seeking (by placement of signs and telephones); (c) increasing the likelihood of intervention by a third party (through surveillance and staff training); and (d) encouraging responsible media reporting of suicide (through guidelines for journalists). There is relatively strong evidence that reducing access to means can avert suicides at hotspots without substitution effects. The evidence is weaker for the other approaches, although they show promise. More well-designed intervention studies are needed to strengthen this evidence base.

  11. Does organic farming enhance biodiversity in Mediterranean vineyards? A case study with bats and arachnids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froidevaux, Jérémy S P; Louboutin, Bastien; Jones, Gareth

    2017-11-01

    The effectiveness of organic farming for promoting biodiversity has been widely documented, yet most studies have been undertaken in temperate agroecosystems with a focus on birds, insects and plants. Despite the Mediterranean basin being a biodiversity hotspot for conservation priorities, the potential benefits of organic farming for biodiversity there has received little attention. Here, we assessed the effect of farming system, landscape characteristics and habitat structure on biodiversity in Mediterranean vineyards using two taxa with different functional traits (in terms of mobility, dispersal ability and home range size): bats and arachnids. We also tested the "intermediate landscape-complexity" hypothesis, which predicts that local conservation measures have greatest success in landscapes of intermediate complexity. Our study design involved pairs of matched organic and conventional vineyard plots in the south of France situated along a landscape complexity gradient. Abundance of arachnids were higher in organic vineyards, although arachnid species richness was positively associated with the amount of ground vegetation cover. Organic farming was ineffective on its own to enhance bat activity and species richness regardless of the landscape context. Rather, our results suggested that landscape features were more important for bats than vineyard management, with significantly higher bat activity recorded on vineyard plots located at close proximity to hedgerows and rivers. When designing conservation strategies in Mediterranean farmlands, we strongly recommend the implementation of a multi-scale approach to assure benefits for a wide range of species.

  12. The effects of atmospheric nitrogen deposition on terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baron, Jill S.; Barber, Mary C.; Adams, Mark; Agboola, Julius I.; Allen, Edith B.; Bealey, William J.; Bobbink, Roland; Bobrovsky, Maxim V.; Bowman, William D.; Branquinho, Cristina; Bustamente, Mercedes M. C.; Clark, Christopher M.; Cocking, Edward C.; Cruz, Cristina; Davidson, Eric A.; Denmead, O. Tom; Dias, Teresa; Dise, Nancy B.; Feest, Alan; Galloway, James N.; Geiser, Linda H.; Gilliam, Frank S.; Harrison, Ian J.; Khanina, Larisa G.; Lu, Xiankai; Manrique, Esteban; Ochoa-Hueso, Raul; Ometto, Jean P. H. B.; Payne, Richard; Scheuschner, Thomas; Sheppard, Lucy J.; Simpson, Gavin L.; Singh, Y. V.; Stevens, Carly J.; Strachan, Ian; Sverdrup, Harald; Tokuchi, Naoko; van Dobben, Hans; Woodin, Sarah

    2014-01-01

    This chapter reports the findings of a Working Group on how atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition affects both terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity. Regional and global scale impacts on biodiversity are addressed, together with potential indicators. Key conclusions are that: the rates of loss in biodiversity are greatest at the lowest and initial stages of N deposition increase; changes in species compositions are related to the relative amounts of N, carbon (C) and phosphorus (P) in the plant soil system; enhanced N inputs have implications for C cycling; N deposition is known to be having adverse effects on European and North American vegetation composition; very little is known about tropical ecosystem responses, while tropical ecosystems are major biodiversity hotspots and are increasingly recipients of very high N deposition rates; N deposition alters forest fungi and mycorrhyzal relations with plants; the rapid response of forest fungi and arthropods makes them good indicators of change; predictive tools (models) that address ecosystem scale processes are necessary to address complex drivers and responses, including the integration of N deposition, climate change and land use effects; criteria can be identified for projecting sensitivity of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems to N deposition. Future research and policy-relevant recommendations are identified.

  13. Measuring temporal trends in biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Buckland, S. T.; Yuan, Y.; Marcon, Eric

    2017-01-01

    Yuan was part-funded by EPSRC/NERC Grant EP/1000917/1 and Marcon by ANR-10-LABX-25-01. In 2002, nearly 200 nations signed up to the 2010 target of the Convention for Biological Diversity, ‘to significantly reduce the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010’. In order to assess whether the target was met, it became necessary to quantify temporal trends in measures of diversity. This resulted in a marked shift in focus for biodiversity measurement. We explore the developments in measuring biodiver...

  14. Data intensive computing for biodiversity

    CERN Document Server

    Dhillon, Sarinder K

    2013-01-01

    This book is focused on the development of a data integration framework for retrieval of biodiversity information from heterogeneous and distributed data sources. The data integration system proposed in this book links remote databases in a networked environment, supports heterogeneous databases and data formats, links databases hosted on multiple platforms, and provides data security for database owners by allowing them to keep and maintain their own data and to choose information to be shared and linked. The book is a useful guide for researchers, practitioners, and graduate-level students interested in learning state-of-the-art development for data integration in biodiversity.

  15. Biodiverse planting for carbon and biodiversity on indigenous land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renwick, Anna R; Robinson, Catherine J; Martin, Tara G; May, Tracey; Polglase, Phil; Possingham, Hugh P; Carwardine, Josie

    2014-01-01

    Carbon offset mechanisms have been established to mitigate climate change through changes in land management. Regulatory frameworks enable landowners and managers to generate saleable carbon credits on domestic and international markets. Identifying and managing the associated co-benefits and dis-benefits involved in the adoption of carbon offset projects is important for the projects to contribute to the broader goal of sustainable development and the provision of benefits to the local communities. So far it has been unclear how Indigenous communities can benefit from such initiatives. We provide a spatial analysis of the carbon and biodiversity potential of one offset method, planting biodiverse native vegetation, on Indigenous land across Australia. We discover significant potential for opportunities for Indigenous communities to achieve carbon sequestration and biodiversity goals through biodiverse plantings, largely in southern and eastern Australia, but the economic feasibility of these projects depend on carbon market assumptions. Our national scale cost-effectiveness analysis is critical to enable Indigenous communities to maximise the benefits available to them through participation in carbon offset schemes.

  16. Global biodiversity monitoring: from data sources to essential biodiversity variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proenca, Vania; Martin, Laura J.; Pereira, Henrique M.; Fernandez, Miguel; McRae, Louise; Belnap, Jayne; Böhm, Monika; Brummitt, Neil; Garcia-Moreno, Jaime; Gregory, Richard D.; Honrado, Joao P; Jürgens, Norbert; Opige, Michael; Schmeller, Dirk S.; Tiago, Patricia; van Sway, Chris A

    2016-01-01

    Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) consolidate information from varied biodiversity observation sources. Here we demonstrate the links between data sources, EBVs and indicators and discuss how different sources of biodiversity observations can be harnessed to inform EBVs. We classify sources of primary observations into four types: extensive and intensive monitoring schemes, ecological field studies and satellite remote sensing. We characterize their geographic, taxonomic and temporal coverage. Ecological field studies and intensive monitoring schemes inform a wide range of EBVs, but the former tend to deliver short-term data, while the geographic coverage of the latter is limited. In contrast, extensive monitoring schemes mostly inform the population abundance EBV, but deliver long-term data across an extensive network of sites. Satellite remote sensing is particularly suited to providing information on ecosystem function and structure EBVs. Biases behind data sources may affect the representativeness of global biodiversity datasets. To improve them, researchers must assess data sources and then develop strategies to compensate for identified gaps. We draw on the population abundance dataset informing the Living Planet Index (LPI) to illustrate the effects of data sources on EBV representativeness. We find that long-term monitoring schemes informing the LPI are still scarce outside of Europe and North America and that ecological field studies play a key role in covering that gap. Achieving representative EBV datasets will depend both on the ability to integrate available data, through data harmonization and modeling efforts, and on the establishment of new monitoring programs to address critical data gaps.

  17. Children prioritize virtual exotic biodiversity over local biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballouard, Jean-Marie; Brischoux, François; Bonnet, Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Environmental education is essential to stem current dramatic biodiversity loss, and childhood is considered as the key period for developing awareness and positive attitudes toward nature. Children are strongly influenced by the media, notably the internet, about biodiversity and conservation issues. However, most media focus on a few iconic, appealing, and usually exotic species. In addition, virtual activities are replacing field experiences. This situation may curb children knowledge and concerns about local biodiversity. Focusing our analyses on local versus exotic species, we examined the level of knowledge and the level of diversity of the animals that French schoolchildren are willing to protect, and whether these perceptions are mainly guided by information available in the internet. For that, we collected and compared two complementary data sets: 1) a questionnaire was administered to schoolchildren to assess their knowledge and consideration to protect animals, 2) an internet content analysis (i.e. Google searching sessions using keywords) was performed to assess which animals are the most often represented. Our results suggest that the knowledge of children and their consideration to protect animal are mainly limited to internet contents, represented by a few exotic and charismatic species. The identification rate of local animals by schoolchildren was meager, suggesting a worrying disconnection from their local environment. Schoolchildren were more prone to protect "virtual" (unseen, exotic) rather than local animal species. Our results reinforce the message that environmental education must also focus on outdoor activities to develop conservation consciousness and concerns about local biodiversity.

  18. Climate change, northern birds of conservation concern and matching the hotspots of habitat suitability with the reserve network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virkkala, Raimo; Heikkinen, Risto K; Fronzek, Stefan; Leikola, Niko

    2013-01-01

    National reserve networks are one of the most important means of species conservation, but their efficiency may be diminished due to the projected climatic changes. Using bioclimatic envelope models and spatial data on habitats and conservation areas, we studied how efficient the reserve network will be in preserving 100 forest, mire, marshland, and alpine bird species of conservation concern in Finland in 2051-2080 under three different climate scenarios. The occurrences of the studied bird species were related to the amount of habitat preferred by each species in the different boreal zones. We employed a novel integrated habitat suitability index that takes into account both the species' probability of occurrence from the bioclimatic models and the availability of suitable habitat. Using this suitability index, the distribution of the topmost 5% suitability squares ("hotspots") in the four bird species groups in the period 1971-2000 and under the three scenarios were compared with the location of reserves with the highest amounts of the four habitats to study the efficiency of the network. In species of mires, marshlands, and Arctic mountains, a high proportion of protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots in the scenarios in 2051-2080, showing that protected areas cover a high proportion of occurrences of bird species. In contrast, in forests in the southern and middle boreal zones, only a small proportion of the protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots, indicating that the efficiency of the protected area network will be insufficient for forest birds in the future. In the northern boreal zone, the efficiency of the reserve network in forests was highly dependent on the strength of climate change varying between the scenarios. Overall, there is no single solution to preserving biodiversity in a changing climate, but several future pathways should be considered.

  19. Would protecting tropical forest fragments provide carbon and biodiversity cobenefits under REDD+?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magnago, Luiz Fernando S; Magrach, Ainhoa; Laurance, William F; Martins, Sebastião V; Meira-Neto, João Augusto A; Simonelli, Marcelo; Edwards, David P

    2015-09-01

    Tropical forests store vast amounts of carbon and are the most biodiverse terrestrial habitats, yet they are being converted and degraded at alarming rates. Given global shortfalls in the budgets required to prevent carbon and biodiversity loss, we need to seek solutions that simultaneously address both issues. Of particular interest are carbon-based payments under the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) mechanism to also conserve biodiversity at no additional cost. One potential is for REDD+ to protect forest fragments, especially within biomes where contiguous forest cover has diminished dramatically, but we require empirical tests of the strength of any carbon and biodiversity cobenefits in such fragmented systems. Using the globally threatened Atlantic Forest landscape, we measured above-ground carbon stocks within forest fragments spanning 13 to 23 442 ha in area and with different degrees of isolation. We related these stocks to tree community structure and to the richness and abundance of endemic and IUCN Red-listed species. We found that increasing fragment size has a positive relationship with above-ground carbon stock and with abundance of IUCN Red-listed species and tree community structure. We also found negative relationships between distance from large forest block and tree community structure, endemic species richness and abundance, and IUCN Red-listed species abundance. These resulted in positive congruence between carbon stocks and Red-listed species, and the abundance and richness of endemic species, demonstrating vital cobenefits. As such, protecting forest fragments in hotspots of biodiversity, particularly larger fragments and those closest to sources, offers important carbon and biodiversity cobenefits. More generally, our results suggest that macroscale models of cobenefits under REDD+ have likely overlooked key benefits at small scales, indicating the necessity to apply models that include finer

  20. Assessing shortfalls and complementary conservation areas for national plant biodiversity in South Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choe, Hyeyeong; Thorne, James H; Huber, Patrick R; Lee, Dongkun; Quinn, James F

    2018-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are often considered the most important biodiversity conservation areas in national plans, but PAs often do not represent national-scale biodiversity. We evaluate the current conservation status of plant biodiversity within current existing PAs, and identify potential additional PAs for South Korea. We modeled species ranges for 2,297 plant species using Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines and compared the level of mean range representation in South Korea's existing PAs, which comprise 5.7% of the country's mainland area, with an equal-area alternative PA strategy selected with the reserve algorithm Marxan. We also used Marxan to model two additional conservation scenarios that add lands to approach the Aichi Biodiversity Target objectives (17% of the country). Existing PAs in South Korea contain an average of 6.3% of each plant species' range, compared to 5.9% in the modeled equal-area alternative. However, existing PAs primarily represent a high percentage of the ranges for high-elevation and small range size species. The additional PAs scenario that adds lands to the existing PAs covers 14,587.55 km2, and would improve overall plant range representation to a mean of 16.8% of every species' range. The other additional PAs scenario, which selects new PAs from all lands and covers 13,197.35 km2, would improve overall plant range representation to a mean of 13.5%. Even though the additional PAs that includes existing PAs represents higher percentages of species' ranges, it is missing many biodiversity hotspots in non-mountainous areas and the additional PAs without locking in the existing PAs represent almost all species' ranges evenly, including low-elevation ones with larger ranges. Some priority conservation areas we identified are expansions of, or near, existing PAs, especially in northeastern and southern South Korea. However, lowland coastal areas and areas surrounding the capital city, Seoul, are also critical for biodiversity

  1. A note on the taxonomy, field status and threats to three endemic species of Syzygium (Myrtaceae from the southern Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Ramasubbu

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Taxonomy, field status and threats of three endemic species of Syzygium,  Syzygium densiflorum Wall. ex Wight & Arn., Syzygium myhendrae (Bedd. ex Brandis Gamble and Syzygium travancoricum Gamble of the southern Western Ghats were discussed.

  2. Energy efficient hotspot-targeted embedded liquid cooling of electronics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharma, Chander Shekhar; Tiwari, Manish K.; Zimmermann, Severin; Brunschwiler, Thomas; Schlottig, Gerd; Michel, Bruno; Poulikakos, Dimos

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • We present a novel concept for hotspot-targeted, energy efficient ELC for electronic chips. • Microchannel throttling zones distribute flow optimally without any external control. • Design is optimized for highly non-uniform multicore chip heat flux maps. • Optimized design minimizes chip temperature non-uniformity. • This is achieved with pumping power consumption less than 1% of total chip power. - Abstract: Large data centers today already account for nearly 1.31% of total electricity consumption with cooling responsible for roughly 33% of that energy consumption. This energy intensive cooling problem is exacerbated by the presence of hotspots in multicore microprocessors due to excess coolant flow requirement for thermal management. Here we present a novel liquid-cooling concept, for targeted, energy efficient cooling of hotspots through passively optimized microchannel structures etched into the backside of a chip (embedded liquid cooling or ELC architecture). We adopt an experimentally validated and computationally efficient modeling approach to predict the performance of our hotspot-targeted ELC design. The design is optimized for exemplar non-uniform chip power maps using Response Surface Methodology (RSM). For industrially acceptable limits of approximately 0.4 bar (40 kPa) on pressure drop and one percent of total chip power on pumping power, the optimized designs are computationally evaluated against a base, standard ELC design with uniform channel widths and uniform flow distribution. For an average steady-state heat flux of 150 W/cm 2 in core areas (hotspots) and 20 W/cm 2 over remaining chip area (background), the optimized design reduces the maximum chip temperature non-uniformity by 61% to 3.7 °C. For a higher average, steady-state hotspot heat flux of 300 W/cm 2 , the maximum temperature non-uniformity is reduced by 54% to 8.7 °C. It is shown that the base design requires a prohibitively high level of pumping power (about

  3. Spatial mismatch analysis among hotspots of alien plant species, road and railway networks in Germany and Austria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanina Benedetti

    Full Text Available Road and railway networks are pervasive elements of all environments, which have expanded intensively over the last century in all European countries. These transportation infrastructures have major impacts on the surrounding landscape, representing a threat to biodiversity. Roadsides and railways may function as corridors for dispersal of alien species in fragmented landscapes. However, only few studies have explored the spread of invasive species in relationship to transport network at large spatial scales. We performed a spatial mismatch analysis, based on a spatially explicit correlation test, to investigate whether alien plant species hotspots in Germany and Austria correspond to areas of high density of roads and railways. We tested this independently of the effects of dominant environments in each spatial unit, in order to focus just on the correlation between occurrence of alien species and density of linear transportation infrastructures. We found a significant spatial association between alien plant species hotspots distribution and roads and railways density in both countries. As expected, anthropogenic landscapes, such as urban areas, harbored more alien plant species, followed by water bodies. However, our findings suggested that the distribution of neobiota is strongest correlated to road/railways density than to land use composition. This study provides new evidence, from a transnational scale, that alien plants can use roadsides and rail networks as colonization corridors. Furthermore, our approach contributes to the understanding on alien plant species distribution at large spatial scale by the combination with spatial modeling procedures.

  4. Raorchestes ghatei, a new species of shrub frog (Anura: Rhacophoridae from the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.D. Padhye

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available A new species of shrub frog Raorchestes ghatei is described from the Western Ghats of Maharashtra. The species differs from its congeners based on a combination of characters including small to medium-sized adult males, snout mucronate in dorsal view, canthus rostralis angular and sharp, snout slightly projecting beyond mouth ventrally, tympanum indistinct and one third of the eye diameter, tongue without papilla but with a lingual pit, nuptial pad rudimentary to absent, a bony tubercle on humerus at the end of deltoid ridge present in males and absent in females, skin finely granulated or smooth dorsally, lateral side marbled with white blotches on brown to black background. Molecular phylogeny based on 16S rRNA gene sequence suggests that the new species is genetically distinct and forms a monophyletic clade within Raorchestes. The species exhibits sexual dimorphism with males having single sub-gular vocal sac and a tubercle on the humerus while females lack them. The species shows direct development. The species is widely distributed in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra.

  5. Cutaneous leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania donovani in the tribal population of the Agasthyamala Biosphere Reserve forest, Western Ghats, Kerala, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, N Pradeep; Srinivasan, R; Anish, T S; Nandakumar, G; Jambulingam, P

    2015-02-01

    Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL), a neglected tropical disease, is reported to be prevalent in tribal villages located in the Agasthyamala Biosphere Reserve forests of Western Ghats, Kerala state, India. We carried out an investigation to characterize the species of Leishmania parasites involved in these infections prevalent among one of the oldest human tribal populations in India. Skin aspirates collected from 13 clinically diagnosed cases were subjected to histopathological investigations, serological rapid tests using 'rk39' and molecular diagnostics. Clinical manifestations recorded among the patients were hypo-pigmented erythematous nodules/papules on limbs and other parts of the body. Histopathological investigations of these skin lesions among patients showed Leishman-Donovan bodies in macrophages. None of the patients were found to be positive for rk39 tests, which detect active visceral leishmaniasis. Using three different genetic markers [kinetoplast minicircle DNA, 3' UTR region of heat-shock protein 70 (Hsp70) and Hsp70 gene] we identified the parasite species involved in these infections to be Leishmania donovani. The 6-phosphogluconate (6-PGDH) gene sequences of the parasite isolates from Western Ghats indicated close genetic relatedness to L. donovani isolates reported from Sri Lanka, also causing CL. This could be cited as another instance of 'local endemism' of organisms in this single 'bio-geographic unit'. © 2015 The Authors.

  6. An agricultural model for biodiversity conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Travis, A.J.

    2008-01-01

    This presentation discusses the SANREM CRSP long term research activity (LTRA-2), "An Agricultural Markets Model for Biodiversity Conservation," in the Luangwa Valley of Zambia. The objectives are: LTRA-2 (An Agricultural Markets Model for Biodiversity Conservation)

  7. Relationship between biodiversity and agricultural production

    OpenAIRE

    Brunetti, Ilaria; Tidball, Mabel; Couvet, Denis

    2018-01-01

    Agriculture is one of the main causes of biodiversity loss. In this work we model the interdependent relationship between biodiversity and agriculture on a farmed land, supposing that, while agriculture has a negative impact on biodiversity, the latter can increase agricultural production. Farmers act as myopic agents, who maximize their instantaneous profit without considering the negative effects of their practice on the evolution of biodiversity. We find that a tax on inputs can have a pos...

  8. Which instruments to preserve forest biodiversity?

    OpenAIRE

    Elodie Brahic

    2010-01-01

    In general, neither the social norms nor market dynamics stimulate spontaneously activities and practices conducive to biodiversity. The nature of public good of biodiversity leads to its rapid erosion. Even if it can respond positively to social expectations and improve welfare in the long term2, taking into account biodiversity often leads to changes in the way we produce or how to exercise its property right. The consideration of biodiversity may determine production losses and income decr...

  9. Biodiversity: past, present and future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubidge, Emily M.; Burton, A. Cole; Vamosi, Steven M.

    2012-01-01

    On 12–15 May 2011, a diverse group of students, researchers and practitioners from across Canada and around the world met in Banff, Alberta, to discuss the many facets of biodiversity science at the 6th Annual Meeting of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution. PMID:21733869

  10. The Early Years: Exploring Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashbrook, Peggy

    2017-01-01

    The importance of biodiversity to human life and the benefits of a diverse ecosystem are not often obvious to young children. This column discusses resources and science topics related to students in grades preK to 2. The objective in this month's issue is to introduce children to the diversity of plant life in a given area through a plant…

  11. Business Meets Biodiversity Conference 2012

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vollaard, B.; Man, M. de; Verweij, P.A.

    2012-01-01

    How can companies successfully integrate the sustainable management of ecosystems and biodiversity into their business models? This was the central question at the international conference ‘Business Meets Biodiversity’ held in Utrecht, The Netherlands, on June 27th 2012. The organizing committee,

  12. Wilderness, biodiversity, and human health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel L. Dustin; Keri A. Schwab; Kelly S. Bricker

    2015-01-01

    This paper illustrates how wilderness, biodiversity, and human health are intertwined. Proceeding from the assumption that humankind is part of, rather than apart from, nature, health is re-imagined as a dynamic relationship that can best be conceived in broad ecological terms. Health, from an ecological perspective, is a measure of the wellness of the individual and...

  13. A forgotten component of biodiversity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2011-07-08

    Jul 8, 2011 ... Home; Journals; Journal of Biosciences; Volume 36; Issue 4. Clipboard: Helminth richness in Arunachal Pradesh fishes: A forgotten component of biodiversity. Amit Tripathi. Volume 36 Issue 4 September 2011 pp 559-561. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link:

  14. Trading biodiversity for pest problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recent shifts in agricultural practices have resulted in increased pesticide use, land use intensification, and landscape simplification, all of which threaten biodiversity in and near farms. Pests are major challenges to food security, and responses to pests can represent unintended socioeconomic a...

  15. Nitrogen deposition and terrestrial biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher M. Clark; Yongfei Bai; William D. Bowman; Jane M. Cowles; Mark E. Fenn; Frank S. Gilliam; Gareth K. Phoenix; Ilyas Siddique; Carly J. Stevens; Harald U. Sverdrup; Heather L. Throop

    2013-01-01

    Nitrogen deposition, along with habitat losses and climate change, has been identified as a primary threat to biodiversity worldwide (Butchart et al., 2010; MEA, 2005; Sala et al., 2000). The source of this stressor to natural systems is generally twofold: burning of fossil fuels and the use of fertilizers in modern intensive agriculture. Each of these human...

  16. Biodiversity in Word and Meaning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slingsby, David

    2010-01-01

    This article argues that we need to abandon the word "biodiversity", to rediscover the biology that it obscures and to rethink how to introduce this biology to young people. We cannot go back to the systematics that once made up a large part of a biology A-level course (ages 16-18), so we need to find alternative ways of introducing the…

  17. Biodiversity Conservation in the REDD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paoli, Gary D; Wells, Philip L; Meijaard, Erik; Struebig, Matthew J; Marshall, Andrew J; Obidzinski, Krystof; Tan, Aseng; Rafiastanto, Andjar; Yaap, Betsy; Ferry Slik, Jw; Morel, Alexandra; Perumal, Balu; Wielaard, Niels; Husson, Simon; D'Arcy, Laura

    2010-11-23

    Deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics is a major source of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The tropics also harbour more than half the world's threatened species, raising the possibility that reducing GHG emissions by curtailing tropical deforestation could provide substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Here we explore the potential for such co-benefits in Indonesia, a leading source of GHG emissions from land cover and land use change, and among the most species-rich countries in the world. We show that focal ecosystems for interventions to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in Indonesia do not coincide with areas supporting the most species-rich communities or highest concentration of threatened species. We argue that inherent trade-offs among ecosystems in emission reduction potential, opportunity cost of foregone development and biodiversity values will require a regulatory framework to balance emission reduction interventions with biodiversity co-benefit targets. We discuss how such a regulatory framework might function, and caution that pursuing emission reduction strategies without such a framework may undermine, not enhance, long-term prospects for biodiversity conservation in the tropics.

  18. Biodiversity Conservation in the REDD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferry Slik JW

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics is a major source of global greenhouse gas (GHG emissions. The tropics also harbour more than half the world's threatened species, raising the possibility that reducing GHG emissions by curtailing tropical deforestation could provide substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Here we explore the potential for such co-benefits in Indonesia, a leading source of GHG emissions from land cover and land use change, and among the most species-rich countries in the world. We show that focal ecosystems for interventions to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in Indonesia do not coincide with areas supporting the most species-rich communities or highest concentration of threatened species. We argue that inherent trade-offs among ecosystems in emission reduction potential, opportunity cost of foregone development and biodiversity values will require a regulatory framework to balance emission reduction interventions with biodiversity co-benefit targets. We discuss how such a regulatory framework might function, and caution that pursuing emission reduction strategies without such a framework may undermine, not enhance, long-term prospects for biodiversity conservation in the tropics.

  19. Achieving Aichi Biodiversity Target 11 to improve the performance of protected areas and conserve freshwater biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diego Juffe-Bignoli; Ian Harrison; Stuart HM Butchart; Rebecca Flitcroft; Virgilio Hermoso; Harry Jonas; Anna Lukasiewicz; Michele Thieme; Eren Turak; Heather Bingham; James Dalton; William Darwall; Marine Deguignet; Nigel Dudley; Royal Gardner; Jonathan Higgins; Ritesh Kumar; Simon Linke; G Randy Milton; Jamie Pittock; Kevin G Smith; Arnout van Soesbergen

    2016-01-01

    1. The Strategic Plan for Biodiversity (2011–2020), adopted at the 10th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, sets 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets to be met by 2020 to address biodiversity loss and ensure its sustainable and equitable use. Aichi Biodiversity Target 11 describes what an improved conservation network would look...

  20. A framework for the identification of hotspots of climate change risk for mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacifici, Michela; Visconti, Piero; Rondinini, Carlo

    2018-04-01

    As rates of global warming increase rapidly, identifying species at risk of decline due to climate impacts and the factors affecting this risk have become key challenges in ecology and conservation biology. Here, we present a framework for assessing three components of climate-related risk for species: vulnerability, exposure and hazard. We used the relationship between the observed response of species to climate change and a set of intrinsic traits (e.g. weaning age) and extrinsic factors (e.g. precipitation seasonality within a species geographic range) to predict, respectively, the vulnerability and exposure of all data-sufficient terrestrial non-volant mammals (3,953 species). Combining this information with hazard (the magnitude of projected climate change within a species geographic range), we identified global hotspots of species at risk from climate change that includes the western Amazon basin, south-western Kenya, north-eastern Tanzania, north-eastern South Africa, Yunnan province in China, and mountain chains in Papua-New Guinea. Our framework identifies priority areas for monitoring climate change effects on species and directing climate mitigation actions for biodiversity. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Teaching Biodiversity & Evolution through Travel Course Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zervanos, Stam. M.; McLaughlin, Jacqueline S.

    2003-01-01

    Biodiversity is the extraordinary variety of life in this planet. In order to be fully appreciated, biodiversity needs to be experienced firsthand, or "experientially." Thus, the standard classroom lecture format is not the ideal situation for teaching biodiversity and evolutionary concepts, in that student interest and understanding are…

  2. Norms and the Conservation of Biodiversity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    user

    Biodiversity, conservation biol- ogy, habitat, environmental eth- ics, endangered species. The aim of this article is to discuss the various ways in which norms enter into discussions of biodiversity and its conserva- tion. It will treat both conservation policy and the science behind biodiversity. Introduction. Twenty years ago, the ...

  3. Biology Student Teachers' Conceptual Frameworks regarding Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dikmenli, Musa

    2010-01-01

    In recent years, biodiversity has received a great deal of attention worldwide, especially in environmental education. The reasons for this attention are the increase of human activities on biodiversity and environmental problems. The purpose of this study is to investigate biology student teachers' conceptual frameworks regarding biodiversity.…

  4. Soil biodiversity and human health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Six, Johan; Pereg, Lily; Brevik, Eric

    2017-04-01

    Biodiversity is important for the maintenance of soil quality. Healthy, biodiverse soils are crucial for human health and wellbeing from several reasons, for example: biodiversity has been shown to be important in controlling populations of pathogens; healthy, well-covered soils can reduce disease outbreaks; carbon-rich soils may also reduce outbreaks of human and animal parasites; exposure to soil microbes can reduce allergies; soils have provided many of our current antibiotics; soil organisms can provide biological disease and pest control agents, healthy soils mean healthier and more abundant foods; soil microbes can enhance crop plant resilience; healthy soils promote good clean air quality, less prone to wind and water erosion; and healthy soils provide clean and safe water through filtration, decontamination by microbes and removal of pollutants. Soil microbes and other biota provide many benefits to human health. Soil microbes are a source of medicines, such as antibiotics, anticancer drugs and many more. Organisms that affect soil health and thus human health include those involved in nutrient cycling, decomposition of organic matter and determining soil structure (e.g. aggregation). Again these are related to food security but also affect human health in other ways. Many beneficial organisms have been isolated from soil - plant growth promoting and disease suppressive microbes used as inoculants, foliar inoculants for improvement of ruminant digestion systems and inoculants used in bioremediation of toxic compounds in the environment. Soil biodiversity is highly recognised now as an important feature of healthy soil and imbalances have been shown to give advantage to harmful over beneficial organisms. This presentation will highlight the many connections of biodiversity to soil quality and human health.

  5. Localised transmission hotspots of a typhoid fever outbreak in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    abp

    2017-10-27

    Oct 27, 2017 ... cases in the military camps shared a latrine with more than one family (P<0.02). All tap water sources in both the military camps and general population were found to be highly contaminated with faecal coliforms. Conclusion: The role of military camps in Kikwit as early hotspots of TF transmission was likely ...

  6. An unusual hotspot in a young woman with Hodgkin's lymphoma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    ten Hove, C. H.; Zijlstra-Baalbergen, J. M.; Comans, E. F. I.; van Elburg, R. M.

    2008-01-01

    A young woman has started cancer treatment because of a Hodgkin's lymphoma. After four months of chemotherapy, a PET scan showed an unexplained hotspot in the right lower abdomen. This was later explained by an unsuspected pregnancy. Our case emphasizes the importance of a pregnancy test in all

  7. The Yellowstone hotspot, Greater Yellowstone ecosystem, and human geography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Despain, D.G.; Morgan, Lisa A.; Good, John M.; Morgan Morzel, Lisa Ann

    2007-01-01

    Active geologic processes associated with the Yellowstone hotspot are fundamental in shaping the landscapes of the greater Yellowstone ecosystem (GYE), a high volcanic plateau flanked by a crescent of still higher mountainous terrain. The processes associated with the Yellowstone hotspot are volcanism, faulting, and uplift and are observed in the geology at the surface. We attribute the driving forces responsible for the northeastward progression of these processes to a thermal plume rising through the Earth’s mantle into the base of the southwest-moving North American plate. This progression began 16 million years ago (Ma) near the Nevada-Oregon border and arrived at Yellowstone about 2 Ma. Before arrival of the hotspot, an older landscape existed, particularly mountains created during the Laramide orogeny about 70–50 Ma and volcanic terrain formed by Absaroka andesitic volcanism mostly between 50–45 Ma. These landscapes were more muted than the present, hotspot-modified landscape because the Laramide-age mountains had worn down and an erosion surface of low relief had developed on the Absaroka volcanic terrain.

  8. Handwritten Character Classification using the Hotspot Feature Extraction Technique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Surinta, Olarik; Schomaker, Lambertus; Wiering, Marco

    2012-01-01

    Feature extraction techniques can be important in character recognition, because they can enhance the efficacy of recognition in comparison to featureless or pixel-based approaches. This study aims to investigate the novel feature extraction technique called the hotspot technique in order to use it

  9. The problems with multi-species conservation: do hotspots, ideal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1995,30(3). The problems with multi-species conservation: do hotspots, ideal reserves and existing reserves coincide? A.T. Lombard. Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town, Private Bag Rondebosch,. 7700 Republic of South Africa. South Africa urgently requires a national strategic plan for ...

  10. Mortality hotspots: nitrogen cycling in forest soils during vertebrate decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Decomposing plants and animals fundamentally transform their surrounding environments, and serve as a critical source of limiting nutrients for macro- and micro-fauna. Animal mortality hotspots alter soil biogeochemical cycles, and these natural ephemeral nutrient patches are important for maintaini...

  11. Apparent Polar Wander of the Pacific Plate and Pacific Hotspots: Implications for True Polar Wander and Hotspot Fixity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, R. G.; Horner-Johnson, B. C.; Petronotis, K. E.; Acton, G. D.

    2004-05-01

    Whether the apparent polar wander (APW) path of the Indo-Atlantic hotspots is a record of true polar wander could be tested from a detailed APW path of the Pacific plate, the motion of which can be estimated relative to the hotpots independently of reconstructions in the Atlantic and Indian Ocean basins. Such an APW path has previously been lacking because of the difficulty in obtaining fully oriented paleomagnetic samples from oceanic plates. We present an APW path for the Pacific plate and for the hotspots of the Pacific basin. Our Pacific plate APW path from 125 Ma to the present is based mainly on the analysis of the skewness of marine magnetic anomalies due to seafloor spreading and is determined with better accuracy and resolution from 32 Ma to 81 Ma than is the APW path of any continent. Our path is defined by eleven paleomagnetic poles from non-overlapping age windows. Nine of these poles, those with ages from 32 Ma to 81 Ma, are determined from skewness analysis of 1563 crossings of marine magnetic anomalies due to seafloor spreading. They reveal the APW of the Pacific plate over this time interval with an accuracy and age-resolution far superior to other data sets. The skewness-only portion of the path indicates northward motion of the Pacific plate with 3 main swings in declination, clockwise from 81 Ma to 68 Ma, counterclockwise from 68 Ma to 40 Ma, and clockwise from 40 Ma to the present. The older two poles are from combinations of data types. There is no significant motion of the pole from 125 Ma to 88 Ma, but there is a sudden large counterclockwise shift of the pole in the brief interval from 88 to 81 Ma. This large and rapid shift of the pole is strongly supported by paleocolatitude data from azimuthally unoriented vertical cores of igneous rock obtained by deep sea drilling. In a reference frame attached to the Pacific hotspots, the spin axis lay near 80°N, 160°E during mid-Cenozoic time (32-40 Ma), near 80°N, 210°E during early Cenozoic time

  12. Novel nucleotide sequence motifs that produce hotspots of meiotic recombination in Schizosaccharomyces pombe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steiner, Walter W; Steiner, Estelle M; Girvin, Angela R; Plewik, Lauren E

    2009-06-01

    In many organisms, including yeasts and humans, meiotic recombination is initiated preferentially at a limited number of sites in the genome referred to as recombination hotspots. Predicting precisely the location of most hotspots has remained elusive. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that hotspots can result from multiple different sequence motifs. We devised a method to rapidly screen many short random oligonucleotide sequences for hotspot activity in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe and produced a library of approximately 500 unique 15- and 30-bp sequences containing hotspots. The frequency of hotspots found suggests that there may be a relatively large number of different sequence motifs that produce hotspots. Within our sequence library, we found many shorter 6- to 10-bp motifs that occurred multiple times, many of which produced hotspots when reconstructed in vivo. On the basis of sequence similarity, we were able to group those hotspots into five different sequence families. At least one of the novel hotspots we found appears to be a target for a transcription factor, as it requires that factor for its hotspot activity. We propose that many hotspots in S. pombe, and perhaps other organisms, result from simple sequence motifs, some of which are identified here.

  13. Speciation gradients and the distribution of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schluter, Dolph; Pennell, Matthew W

    2017-05-31

    Global patterns of biodiversity are influenced by spatial and environmental variations in the rate at which new species form. We relate variations in speciation rates to six key patterns of biodiversity worldwide, including the species-area relationship, latitudinal gradients in species and genetic diversity, and between-habitat differences in species richness. Although they sometimes mirror biodiversity patterns, recent rates of speciation, at the tip of the tree of life, are often highest where species richness is low. Speciation gradients therefore shape, but are also shaped by, biodiversity gradients and are often more useful for predicting future patterns of biodiversity than for interpreting the past.

  14. Options for promoting high-biodiversity REDD+

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Swan, Steve; Mcnally, Richard; Grieg-Gran, Maryanne; Roe, Dilys; Mohammed, Essam Yassin

    2011-11-15

    International climate and biodiversity conventions agree that to be effective in the long term, strategies to reduce emissions from deforestation, forest degradation, conservation and enhancement of forest carbon stocks, and sustainable forest management (REDD+), must not undermine biodiversity. But how do countries achieve 'high-biodiversity REDD+' in practice? At a global level, options include immediate policy strengthening in international negotiations; promotion of co-benefit standards; and financial incentives and preferences for buying countries. At a national level, developing countries can also promote high-biodiversity REDD+ through more coherent policies; integrated planning; regulatory and economic instruments; and improved monitoring of biodiversity impacts.

  15. Reproductive biology of Pittosporum dasycaulon Miq., (Family Pittosporaceae) a rare medicinal tree endemic to Western Ghats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopalakrishnan, Krishna Kumar; Thomas, Thuruthiyil Dennis

    2014-12-01

    For successful cultivation and conservation of plants a detailed knowledge of their reproductive biology is required. The reproductive features of trees are important to determine the diversity patterns and community structure of tropical forests. The present study on reproductive biology of Pittosporum dasycaulon, a rare medicinal tree, was conducted in the shola forests of Vaghamon hills, one of the foot hills of Southern Western Ghats of India from 2008-2011. The plant flowers profusely during February to April. Inflorescence is a raceme and the total number of flowers per inflorescence varies from 96-217. The flowers are comparatively small, hermaphrodite, short pedicellate, complete, zygomorphic, pentamerous, polypetalous, hypogynous and light cream in colour with an average length of 1.14 cm. Anthesis started at 08.30 h and the flowers were completely opened at approximately 09.30 h followed by anther deshiscence at 10.00-11.30 h. The pollen grains were trizonocolpate with 45 ± 5.6 μm in size. Acetocarmine staining showed 66 ± 6% fertile pollen at the time of anther dehiscence. The number of pollen grains in an anther is 5246 ± 845 and per flower is 26230 ± 1021. The stigma is wet, non-papillate, capitate and contains a thin film of exudates under the light microscope. The superior ovary is densely covered with papillate hairs and containing 3-8 ovules. The important floral visitors include bees and butterflies. The plant is self-incompatible and an out crosser. Fruit set under open-pollination was poor (24%) with 58.3% fruits having seeds inside. There was no fruit set in manually self pollinated flowers while over 57% of the cross pollinated flowers set fruits. Our study presents a detailed account on reproductive biology of this medicinal tree which may help in the conservation and genetic improvement of this particular taxa.

  16. Root strength of tropical plants - An investigation in the Western Ghats of Kerala, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukose Kuriakose, S.; van Beek, L. P. H.; van Westen, C. J.

    2009-04-01

    Earlier research on debris flows in the Tikovil River basin of the Western Ghats concluded that root cohesion is significant in maintaining the overall stability of the region. In this paper we present the most recent results (December 2008) of root tensile strength tests conducted on nine species of plants that are commonly found in the region. They are 1) Rubber (Hevea Brasiliensis), 2) Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera), 3) Jackfruit trees (Artocarpus heterophyllus), 4) Teak (Tectona grandis), 5) Mango trees (Mangifera indica), 6) Lemon grass (Cymbopogon citratus), 7) A variety of Tamarind (Garcinia gummigutta), 8) Coffee (Coffea Arabica) and Tea (Camellia sinensis). About 1500 samples were collected of which only 380 could be tested (in the laboratory) due to breakage of roots during the tests. In the successful tests roots failed in tension. Roots having diameters between 2 mm and 12 mm were tested. Each sample tested has a length of 15 cm. Results indicate that the roots of Coffee, Tamarind, Lemon grass and Jackfruit are the strongest of the nine plant types tested whereas Tea and Teak plants had the most fragile roots. Coconut roots behaved atypical to the others, as the bark of the roots was crushed and slipped from the clamp when tested whereas its internal fiber was the strongest of all tested. Root tensile strength decreases with increasing diameters, Rubber showing more ductile behaviour than Coffee and Tamarind that behaved more brittle, root tensile strength increasing exponentially for finer roots. Teak and Tea showed almost a constant root tensile strength over the range of diameters tested and little variability. Jack fruit and mango trees showed the largest variability, which may be explained by the presence of root nodules, preventing the derivation of an unequivocal relationship between root diameters and tensile strength. This results in uncertainty of root strength estimates that are applicable. These results provide important information to

  17. Total polyphenolic contents and in vitro antioxidant properties of eight Sida species from Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M D Subramanya

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Sida L., is a medicinally important genus, the species of which are widely used in traditional systems of medicine in India. Pharmacologically, roots are known for anti-tumor, anti-HIV, hepatoprotective, and many other properties. Phenolic antioxidants help in reducing oxidative stress occurring during treatment of such diseases. Objective: The study aimed to evaluate and compare polyphenol contents and antioxidant properties of eight selected species of Sida from Western Ghats, India. Materials and Methods: Methanolic root extracts (10% w/v of Sida species, viz., S. acuta, S. cordata, S. cordifolia, S. indica, S. mysorensis, S. retusa, S. rhombifolia, and S. spinosa were analyzed. Results: Sida cordifolia possessed highest total phenolic content (TPC: 1.92 ± 0.10 mg Caffeic Acid Equivalent/g and 2.13 ± 0.11 mg Tannic Acid Equivalant/g, total flavonoid content (TF: 2.60 ± 0.13 mg Quercetin Equivalent/g and also possessed highest antioxidant activities in 2,2-diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH radical scavenging (51.31 ± 2.57% Radical Scavenging Activity, (RSA; Trolox Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity: 566.25 ± 28.31μM; Ascorbic acid Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity: 477.80 ± 23.89 μM and Ferric Reducing Antioxidant Power assays (TEAC: 590.67 ± 29.53 μM; AEAC: 600.67 ± 30.03 μM. Unlike DPPH and Ferric Reducing Antioxidant Power (FRAP activity, 2, 2Ͳ-Azinobis (3-ethyl Benzo Thiazoline-6-Sulfonic acid ABTS + antioxidant activity was highest in S. indica (TEAC: 878.44 ± 43.92 μM; AEAC 968.44 ± 48.42 μM. It was significant to note that values of AEAC (μM for all the antioxidant activities analyzed were higher than that of TEAC. Conclusion: The high contents of phenolic compounds in the root extracts of selected Sida species have direct correlation with their antioxidant properties. Conclusively, roots of S. cordifolia can be considered as the potential source of polyphenols and antioxidants.

  18. Early lineations in a later shear zone: case study from the Eastern Ghats Belt, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose, S.; Gupta, S.

    2016-12-01

    In polydeformed gneissic terranes, ductile shear zones may cut across rocks with older penetrative fabrics. Earlier lineations in later ductile shear zones need to be identified to avoid incorrect kinematic interpretation. To investigate the fate of early lineations during later ductile shearing, the Mahanadi Shear Zone (MSZ) from the Eastern Ghats Belt (EGB) in India is taken as a case study. The EGB is a Proterozoic granulite terrane correlated with Indo-Antarctica collision. The MSZ lies within the EGB, but is oriented almost perpendicular to the trend of the belt. The penetrative structural fabric in the EGB is NE-SW trending and dipping SE. However, a broad swing in structural trend from NE-SW to WNW-ESE can be detected near the MSZ from satellite imagery. In mylonitised rocks of the shear zone, a discrepancy between the shear zone lineation and inferred shear sense leads to uncertainty in kinematic interpretation of the shear zone. The EGB rock types include charnockites, quartzofeldspathic gneisses and garnet-sillimanite-bearing metapelitic gneisses (khondalites). Outside the MSZ, gneisses preserve an earlier, dominantly down-dip intersection lineation. Sillimanite needles in khondalites are aligned parallel to this lineation, while quartz and garnet are also annealed into the granulite facies fabric. In the vicinity of the shear zone, evidence of dextral non-coaxial shearing progressively increases but the lineation distribution is scattered. Quartz grains show strong undulose extinction caused by strain at lower temperatures, and crystallographic c-axis fabric analyses using EBSD indicate deformation by basal c-slip mechanism. Preferred alignment of the sillimanite needles is disrupted in khondalites within the MSZ because of partial rotation of the needles towards the sub-horizontal movement direction, with the extent of rotation of the needles being apparently controlled by grain size. Some sillimanite needles also appear to have undergone

  19. Biodiversity in the Anthropocene: prospects and policy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mace, Georgina M.; Mouillot, David; Vause, James; Walpole, Matt

    2016-01-01

    Meeting the ever-increasing needs of the Earth’s human population without excessively reducing biological diversity is one of the greatest challenges facing humanity, suggesting that new approaches to biodiversity conservation are required. One idea rapidly gaining momentum—as well as opposition—is to incorporate the values of biodiversity into decision-making using economic methods. Here, we develop several lines of argument for how biodiversity might be valued, building on recent developments in natural science, economics and science-policy processes. Then we provide a synoptic guide to the papers in this special feature, summarizing recent research advances relevant to biodiversity valuation and management. Current evidence suggests that more biodiverse systems have greater stability and resilience, and that by maximizing key components of biodiversity we maximize an ecosystem’s long-term value. Moreover, many services and values arising from biodiversity are interdependent, and often poorly captured by standard economic models. We conclude that economic valuation approaches to biodiversity conservation should (i) account for interdependency and (ii) complement rather than replace traditional approaches. To identify possible solutions, we present a framework for understanding the foundational role of hard-to-quantify ‘biodiversity services’ in sustaining the value of ecosystems to humanity, and then use this framework to highlight new directions for pure and applied research. In most cases, clarifying the links between biodiversity and ecosystem services, and developing effective policy and practice for managing biodiversity, will require a genuinely interdisciplinary approach. PMID:27928040

  20. Biodiversity in the Anthropocene: prospects and policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seddon, Nathalie; Mace, Georgina M; Naeem, Shahid; Tobias, Joseph A; Pigot, Alex L; Cavanagh, Rachel; Mouillot, David; Vause, James; Walpole, Matt

    2016-12-14

    Meeting the ever-increasing needs of the Earth's human population without excessively reducing biological diversity is one of the greatest challenges facing humanity, suggesting that new approaches to biodiversity conservation are required. One idea rapidly gaining momentum-as well as opposition-is to incorporate the values of biodiversity into decision-making using economic methods. Here, we develop several lines of argument for how biodiversity might be valued, building on recent developments in natural science, economics and science-policy processes. Then we provide a synoptic guide to the papers in this special feature, summarizing recent research advances relevant to biodiversity valuation and management. Current evidence suggests that more biodiverse systems have greater stability and resilience, and that by maximizing key components of biodiversity we maximize an ecosystem's long-term value. Moreover, many services and values arising from biodiversity are interdependent, and often poorly captured by standard economic models. We conclude that economic valuation approaches to biodiversity conservation should (i) account for interdependency and (ii) complement rather than replace traditional approaches. To identify possible solutions, we present a framework for understanding the foundational role of hard-to-quantify 'biodiversity services' in sustaining the value of ecosystems to humanity, and then use this framework to highlight new directions for pure and applied research. In most cases, clarifying the links between biodiversity and ecosystem services, and developing effective policy and practice for managing biodiversity, will require a genuinely interdisciplinary approach. © 2016 The Author(s).

  1. Cephalopods of the Southwest Indian OceanRidge: A hotspot of biological diversity and absence of endemism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laptikhovsky, V.; Boersch-Supan, P.; Bolstad, K.; Kemp, K.; Letessier, T.; Rogers, A. D.

    2017-02-01

    A total of 68 cephalopod species belonging to 26 families (10-11% of the total known cephalopod diversity) were collected onboard R/V Fridtjof Nansen during a research survey on Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge in November-December 2009. This relatively small area extends from the Tropical front to the Subantarctic front with four distinctive cephalopod faunas and represents one of the most outstanding hotspots of cephalopod diversity reported to date. However, most of the species caught there were characterised by circumglobal distribution in the Southern Hemisphere, and no endemic species were unambiguously found, although a number of taxa could not be confidently attributed to known species. Most of the studied area was dominated by squid species reproducing in epipelagic layers (mostly Enoploteuthidae and Pyroteuthidae). Species reproducing in meso-bathypelagial whose juveniles ascend to surface water (Cranchiidae, Histioteuthidae, etc.) became gradually more and more important southward from the Tropical Zone to the Southern Peripheral Ecotone. In the latter region they were joined by near-bottom dwellers of the order Sepiolida. The epipelagic strategy of reproduction disappears completely at the Subpolar Front, where epipelagic waters were inhabited by young members of the Cranchiidae and Gonatidae hatched in deep-seas. This study demonstrated the importance of conservation and management of this high-seas area, with its unique biodiversity and ecological resources, in line with recommendations by the IUCN Seamount project and Global Ocean Biodiversity Initiative.

  2. Accounting for biodiversity in the dairy industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sizemore, Grant C

    2015-05-15

    Biodiversity is an essential part of properly functioning ecosystems, yet the loss of biodiversity currently occurs at rates unparalleled in the modern era. One of the major causes of this phenomenon is habitat loss and modification as a result of intensified agricultural practices. This paper provides a starting point for considering biodiversity within dairy production, and, although focusing primarily on the United States, findings are applicable broadly. Biodiversity definitions and assessments (e.g., indicators, tools) are proposed and reviewed. Although no single indicator or tool currently meets all the needs of comprehensive assessment, many sustainable practices are readily adoptable as ways to conserve and promote biodiversity. These practices, as well as potential funding opportunities are identified. Given the state of uncertainty in addressing the complex nature of biodiversity assessments, the adoption of generally sustainable environmental practices may be the best currently available option for protecting biodiversity on dairy lands. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Coastal fog and low cloud spatial patterns: do they indicate potential biodiversity refugia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torregrosa, A.

    2016-12-01

    Marine fog and low clouds transfer water and nutrients to coastal ecosystems through advection from the ocean and reduce heat effects by reflecting incoming shortwave radiation. These effects are known to benefit many species, vegetation communities, and habitats such as coastal redwood trees and their understory, maritime chaparral, and coastal streams harboring endangered salmon species. The California floristic region is the highest ranked hotspot in the U.S. and ranked 7th of 35 biodiversity hotspots worldwide in terms of the percent of its plant species that are found nowhere else (endemic). Many environmental drivers have been identified as contributing to California's remarkably high endemism and biodiversity, however, coastal low clouds have not typically been included. This could be due to the lack of data such as high resolution maps of coastal low cloud occurrence or the lack of long term records. Using a recent analysis of hourly National Weather Service satellite data, a stability index (SI) for coastal fog and low cloud cover was derived using two measures of variation and average summertime cloud cover to quantify long term spatial stability trends. Several discrete spatial clumps were identified that had both high temporal stability and high coastal low cloud cover. These areas show a strong correlation with a specific topographic landscape configuration with respect to wind direction. Point occurrence distribution maps of endemic coastal species were overlain with the SI to explore spatial correlation. The federally endangered species that showed very high spatial correlation included Yadon's Rein-orchid (Piperia yadonii), Monterey Spineflower (Chorizanthe pungens var. pungens), and Seaside Bird's-beak (Cordylanthus rigidus ssp. littoralis). Current estimated range maps are not consistent with the SI results suggesting a need to update estimated ranges. Biodiversity measures are being investigated in these areas to explore the hypothesis that they

  4. Predaceous water beetles (Coleoptera, Hydradephaga) of the Lake St Lucia system, South Africa: biodiversity, community ecology and conservation implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perissinotto, Renzo; Bird, Matthew S; Bilton, David T

    2016-01-01

    Water beetles are one of the dominant macroinvertebrate groups in inland waters and are excellent ecological indicators, reflecting both the diversity and composition of the wider aquatic community. The predaceous water beetles (Hydradephaga) make up around one-third of known aquatic Coleoptera and, as predators, are a key group in the functioning of many aquatic habitats. Despite being relatively well-known taxonomically, ecological studies of these insects in tropical and subtropical systems remain rare. A dedicated survey of the hydradephagan beetles of the Lake St Lucia wetlands (South Africa) was undertaken between 2013 and 2015, providing the first biodiversity census for this important aquatic group in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site within the Maputaland biodiversity hotspot. A total of 32 sites covering the entire spectrum of waterbody types were sampled over the course of three collecting trips. The Lake St Lucia wetlands support at least 68 species of Hydradephaga, a very high level of diversity comparing favourably with other hotspots on the African continent and elsewhere in the world and a number of taxa are reported for South Africa for the first time. This beetle assemblage is dominated by relatively widespread Afrotropical taxa, with few locally endemic species, supporting earlier observations that hotspots of species richness and centres of endemism are not always coincident. Although there was no significant difference in the number of species supported by the various waterbody types sampled, sites with the highest species richness were mostly temporary depression wetlands. This contrasts markedly with the distribution of other taxa in the same system, such as molluscs and dragonflies, which are most diverse in permanent waters. Our study is the first to highlight the importance of temporary depression wetlands and emphasises the need to maintain a variety of wetland habitats for aquatic conservation in this biodiverse

  5. Intellectual Property and biodiversity: interplay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhola, Ravi; Dave, Shreya

    2017-05-01

    Potentially divergent objectives and thereby obligations under the Convention on Biodiversity and Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement are also reflected in respective domestic legislations in India. The review article focuses on Biological Diversity Act, 2002 vis-à-vis Patents Act, 1970 of India with intricacies involved thereunder. Authors have analyzed the obligations under these domestic legislations. The article goes on to make a few suggestions to aid effective implementation of both the statutes. The scope of this review article is limited in two aspects; first, it speaks only about Indian landscape and second, it discusses about interplay of biodiversity law only with respect to patent law instead of all the domestic Intellectual Property enactments of India.

  6. Island biodiversity conservation needs palaeoecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nogué, Sandra; de Nascimento, Lea; Froyd, Cynthia A.

    2017-01-01

    The discovery and colonization of islands by humans has invariably resulted in their widespread ecological transformation. The small and isolated populations of many island taxa, and their evolution in the absence of humans and their introduced taxa, mean that they are particularly vulnerable to ...... and the introduction of non-native species. We provide exemplification of how such approaches can provide valuable information for biodiversity conservation managers of island ecosystems....

  7. The PREDICTS database: a global database of how local terrestrial biodiversity responds to human impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, Lawrence N; Newbold, Tim; Contu, Sara; Hill, Samantha L L; Lysenko, Igor; De Palma, Adriana; Phillips, Helen R P; Senior, Rebecca A; Bennett, Dominic J; Booth, Hollie; Choimes, Argyrios; Correia, David L P; Day, Julie; Echeverría-Londoño, Susy; Garon, Morgan; Harrison, Michelle L K; Ingram, Daniel J; Jung, Martin; Kemp, Victoria; Kirkpatrick, Lucinda; Martin, Callum D; Pan, Yuan; White, Hannah J; Aben, Job; Abrahamczyk, Stefan; Adum, Gilbert B; Aguilar-Barquero, Virginia; Aizen, Marcelo A; Ancrenaz, Marc; Arbeláez-Cortés, Enrique; Armbrecht, Inge; Azhar, Badrul; Azpiroz, Adrián B; Baeten, Lander; Báldi, András; Banks, John E; Barlow, Jos; Batáry, Péter; Bates, Adam J; Bayne, Erin M; Beja, Pedro; Berg, Åke; Berry, Nicholas J; Bicknell, Jake E; Bihn, Jochen H; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin; Boekhout, Teun; Boutin, Céline; Bouyer, Jérémy; Brearley, Francis Q; Brito, Isabel; Brunet, Jörg; Buczkowski, Grzegorz; Buscardo, Erika; Cabra-García, Jimmy; Calviño-Cancela, María; Cameron, Sydney A; Cancello, Eliana M; Carrijo, Tiago F; Carvalho, Anelena L; Castro, Helena; Castro-Luna, Alejandro A; Cerda, Rolando; Cerezo, Alexis; Chauvat, Matthieu; Clarke, Frank M; Cleary, Daniel F R; Connop, Stuart P; D'Aniello, Biagio; da Silva, Pedro Giovâni; Darvill, Ben; Dauber, Jens; Dejean, Alain; Diekötter, Tim; Dominguez-Haydar, Yamileth; Dormann, Carsten F; Dumont, Bertrand; Dures, Simon G; Dynesius, Mats; Edenius, Lars; Elek, Zoltán; Entling, Martin H; Farwig, Nina; Fayle, Tom M; Felicioli, Antonio; Felton, Annika M; Ficetola, Gentile F; Filgueiras, Bruno K C; Fonte, Steven J; Fraser, Lauchlan H; Fukuda, Daisuke; Furlani, Dario; Ganzhorn, Jörg U; Garden, Jenni G; Gheler-Costa, Carla; Giordani, Paolo; Giordano, Simonetta; Gottschalk, Marco S; Goulson, Dave; Gove, Aaron D; Grogan, James; Hanley, Mick E; Hanson, Thor; Hashim, Nor R; Hawes, Joseph E; Hébert, Christian; Helden, Alvin J; Henden, John-André; Hernández, Lionel; Herzog, Felix; Higuera-Diaz, Diego; Hilje, Branko; Horgan, Finbarr G; Horváth, Roland; Hylander, Kristoffer; Isaacs-Cubides, Paola; Ishitani, Masahiro; Jacobs, Carmen T; Jaramillo, Víctor J; Jauker, Birgit; Jonsell, Mats; Jung, Thomas S; Kapoor, Vena; Kati, Vassiliki; Katovai, Eric; Kessler, Michael; Knop, Eva; Kolb, Annette; Kőrösi, Ádám; Lachat, Thibault; Lantschner, Victoria; Le Féon, Violette; LeBuhn, Gretchen; Légaré, Jean-Philippe; Letcher, Susan G; Littlewood, Nick A; López-Quintero, Carlos A; Louhaichi, Mounir; Lövei, Gabor L; Lucas-Borja, Manuel Esteban; Luja, Victor H; Maeto, Kaoru; Magura, Tibor; Mallari, Neil Aldrin; Marin-Spiotta, Erika; Marshall, E J P; Martínez, Eliana; Mayfield, Margaret M; Mikusinski, Grzegorz; Milder, Jeffrey C; Miller, James R; Morales, Carolina L; Muchane, Mary N; Muchane, Muchai; Naidoo, Robin; Nakamura, Akihiro; Naoe, Shoji; Nates-Parra, Guiomar; Navarrete Gutierrez, Dario A; Neuschulz, Eike L; Noreika, Norbertas; Norfolk, Olivia; Noriega, Jorge Ari; Nöske, Nicole M; O'Dea, Niall; Oduro, William; Ofori-Boateng, Caleb; Oke, Chris O; Osgathorpe, Lynne M; Paritsis, Juan; Parra-H, Alejandro; Pelegrin, Nicolás; Peres, Carlos A; Persson, Anna S; Petanidou, Theodora; Phalan, Ben; Philips, T Keith; Poveda, Katja; Power, Eileen F; Presley, Steven J; Proença, Vânia; Quaranta, Marino; Quintero, Carolina; Redpath-Downing, Nicola A; Reid, J Leighton; Reis, Yana T; Ribeiro, Danilo B; Richardson, Barbara A; Richardson, Michael J; Robles, Carolina A; Römbke, Jörg; Romero-Duque, Luz Piedad; Rosselli, Loreta; Rossiter, Stephen J; Roulston, T'ai H; Rousseau, Laurent; Sadler, Jonathan P; Sáfián, Szabolcs; Saldaña-Vázquez, Romeo A; Samnegård, Ulrika; Schüepp, Christof; Schweiger, Oliver; Sedlock, Jodi L; Shahabuddin, Ghazala; Sheil, Douglas; Silva, Fernando A B; Slade, Eleanor M; Smith-Pardo, Allan H; Sodhi, Navjot S; Somarriba, Eduardo J; Sosa, Ramón A; Stout, Jane C; Struebig, Matthew J; Sung, Yik-Hei; Threlfall, Caragh G; Tonietto, Rebecca; Tóthmérész, Béla; Tscharntke, Teja; Turner, Edgar C; Tylianakis, Jason M; Vanbergen, Adam J; Vassilev, Kiril; Verboven, Hans A F; Vergara, Carlos H; Vergara, Pablo M; Verhulst, Jort; Walker, Tony R; Wang, Yanping; Watling, James I; Wells, Konstans; Williams, Christopher D; Willig, Michael R; Woinarski, John C Z; Wolf, Jan H D; Woodcock, Ben A; Yu, Douglas W; Zaitsev, Andrey S; Collen, Ben; Ewers, Rob M; Mace, Georgina M; Purves, Drew W; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2014-01-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures such as habitat destruction, exploitation, pollution and introduction of alien species. Existing global databases of species’ threat status or population time series are dominated by charismatic species. The collation of datasets with broad taxonomic and biogeographic extents, and that support computation of a range of biodiversity indicators, is necessary to enable better understanding of historical declines and to project – and avert – future declines. We describe and assess a new database of more than 1.6 million samples from 78 countries representing over 28,000 species, collated from existing spatial comparisons of local-scale biodiversity exposed to different intensities and types of anthropogenic pressures, from terrestrial sites around the world. The database contains measurements taken in 208 (of 814) ecoregions, 13 (of 14) biomes, 25 (of 35) biodiversity hotspots and 16 (of 17) megadiverse countries. The database contains more than 1% of the total number of all species described, and more than 1% of the described species within many taxonomic groups – including flowering plants, gymnosperms, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, beetles, lepidopterans and hymenopterans. The dataset, which is still being added to, is therefore already considerably larger and more representative than those used by previous quantitative models of biodiversity trends and responses. The database is being assembled as part of the PREDICTS project (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems – http://www.predicts.org.uk). We make site-level summary data available alongside this article. The full database will be publicly available in 2015. PMID:25558364

  8. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Moolah, misfortune or spinsterhood? The plight of Slender Loris Loris lydekkerianus in southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Kanagavel

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available In this communication, we document the local knowledge, attitudes and perceptions of slender lorises among the indigenous Kani community in the southern Western Ghats; document new records of Loris lydekkerianus lydekkerianus in the Agasthyamalai Hills; and discuss in detail a poorly known threat to these primates. Although not kept as pets due to their physical appearance, and belief that they would bring bad luck, the Kani community however captured slender lorises for wildlife photographers. Similar instances of loris abuse in various parts of south India were revealed upon analyzing photographs from a popular internet-based wildlife photography site. We recommend that strict guidelines be formulated for photographing lorises, and suggest that novel and ethical tourism initiatives be set up involving local communities to cater to wildlife photographers and tourists.

  9. Description of a new species, Toxorhynchites (Toxorhynchites) tyagii (Diptera: Culicidae), from Nilgiri hills, Western Ghats, southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnamoorthy, R; Munirathinam, A; Dhananjeyan, K J; Hiriyan, J; Mariappan, T; Samuel, P Philip; Venkatesh, A

    2013-01-01

    Specimens of Toxorhynchites (Toxorhynchites) tyagii, sp. n., were collected from the fringe areas of Gudaloor town, Ooty in the Nilgiri hills at an altitude of 1000 m above sea level in Western Ghats ranges in southern India during October 2011 and from Darjeeling ranges in the northern hilly region of Raymatang TG in Jalpaiguri district, West Bengal, in eastern India during February 2012. The adults, pupa and fourth-instar larva of this species are described and illustrated to distinguish it from Toxorhynchites (Tox.) splendens and Toxorhynchites (Tox.) edwardsi, which are the closest allies of Tx. (Tox.) tyagii. Besides possessing remarkable distinguishing male genital characteristics, Tx. tyagii differs from Tx. splendens also by the presence of conspicuous yellow scale-patches over the wing root that extend to the scutellum, and differs from Tx. edwardsi by having midtarsomeres 3-5 all dark whereas in Tx. edwardsi tarsomeres 3 and 4 and a larger part of 5 are white.

  10. Arbuscular mycorrhizal morphology and dark septate fungal associations in medicinal and aromatic plants of Western Ghats, Southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthukumar, T; Senthilkumar, M; Rajangam, M; Udaiyan, K

    2006-12-01

    We investigated roots of 107 medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs) in the Western Ghats region of Southern India for arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) and dark septate endophyte (DSE) associations. Of the 107 MAPs belonging to 98 genera in 52 families examined, 79 were AM and 38 harbored a DSE association. Typical Arum- and Paris-type mycorrhizas are first reported in the presumed nonmycorrhizal family Amaranthaceae. Similarly, DSE associations are recorded for the first time in nine plant families and 37 plant species. Thirty MAPs had both AM and DSE associations. The number of MAPs having Arum-type mycorrhiza was greater than those having Paris-type. This was more prominent among herbaceous plants than in trees where the Paris-type was predominant. Similarly, the Arum-type was more prevalent in annuals than in perennials. DSE associations were more frequent in herbs and perennials compared to other MAPs.

  11. Integrating ethnobiological knowledge into biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Himalayas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Alexander R; Badola, Hemant K; Dhyani, Pitamber P; Rana, Santosh K

    2017-03-29

    Biocultural knowledge provides valuable insight into ecological processes, and can guide conservation practitioners in local contexts. In many regions, however, such knowledge is underutilized due to its often-fragmented record in disparate sources. In this article, we review and apply ethnobiological knowledge to biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Himalayas. Using Sikkim, India as a case study, we: (i) traced the history and trends of ethnobiological documentation; (ii) identified priority species and habitat types; and, (iii) analyzed within and among community differences pertaining to species use and management. Our results revealed that Sikkim is a biocultural hotspot, where six ethnic communities and 1128 species engage in biocultural relationships. Since the mid-1800s, the number of ethnobiological publications from Sikkim has exponentially increased; however, our results also indicate that much of this knowledge is both unwritten and partitioned within an aging, gendered, and caste or ethnic group-specific stratum of society. Reviewed species were primarily wild or wild cultivated, native to subtropical and temperate forests, and pend IUCN Red List of Threatened Species assessment. Our results demonstrate the value of engaging local knowledge holders as active participants in conservation, and suggest the need for further ethnobiological research in the Eastern Himalayas. Our interdisciplinary approach, which included rank indices and geospatial modelling, can help integrate diverse datasets into evidence-based policy.

  12. The prevalence of toxic hotspots in former Soviet countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharov, Petr; Dowling, Russell; Gogishvili, Megi; Jones, Barbara; Caravanos, Jack; McCartor, Andrew; Kashdan, Zachary; Fuller, Richard

    2016-04-01

    Using a global database of contaminated sites, toxic hotspots in eight former Soviet countries were analyzed to identify the prevalence, types and sources of toxic pollution, as well as their associated potential public health impacts. For this analysis, polluted sites in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan were compiled and analyzed. The levels of contamination of seven key pollutants were assessed in each country. 424 contaminated sites were identified using data from Blacksmith Institute. Pesticides, lead (Pb), radioactive metals, arsenic (As), mercury (Hg), chromium (Cr), and cadmium (Cd) were the most commonly identified key pollutants. Collectively, these sites pose health risks to an estimated 6.2 million residents. The existing data on toxic hotspots in former Soviet countries likely captures only a small percentage of actual contaminated sites, but suggests potentially severe public health consequences. Additional assessments are needed to understand the risks posed by toxic pollution in the region. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Diversification in a biodiversity hotspot--the evolution of Southeast Asian rhacophorid tree frogs on Borneo (Amphibia: Anura: Rhacophoridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertwig, Stefan T; Schweizer, Manuel; Das, Indraneil; Haas, Alexander

    2013-09-01

    The tree-frog family Rhacophoridae is a major group contributing to the high pecies richness and reproductive diversity among vertebrates of Sundaland. Nonetheless, rhacophorid evolution, specially on Borneo, has not been studied within a phylogenetic context. In this study, we examine the phylogenetic relationships of 38 (out of 41) Bornean species of Rhacophoridae, in combination with data from previous phylogenetic studies. In the final super matrix of 91 species, we analyse sequence data from two mitochondrial and three nuclear genes. The resulting trees show the genus Rhacophorus as a paraphyletic assemblage. As a consequence, we transfer Rhacophorus appendiculatus and R. kajau to two other genera and propose the new phylogeny-based combinations--Kurixalus appendiculatus and Feihyla kajau, respectively. Furthermore, we use our phylogenetic hypotheses to reconstruct the evolution of reproductive modes in rhacophorid tree frogs. Direct development to the exclusion of a free larval stage evolved twice independently, once in an ancestor of the Pseudophilautus+Raorchestes clade in India and Sri Lanka, and once within Philautus in Southeast Asia. The deposition of egg clutches covered by a layer of jelly in Feihyla is also present in F. kajau and thus confirms our generic reassignment. The remarkably high diversity of rhacophorid tree frogs on Borneo is the outcome of a complex pattern of repeated vicariance and dispersal events caused by past changes in the climatic and geological history of the Sunda shelf. We identified geographic clades of closely related endemic species within Rhacophorus and Philautus, which result from local island radiations on Borneo. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Mass Extinction and the Disappearance of Unknown Mammal Species: Scenario and Perspectives of a Biodiversity Hotspot’s Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendes Pontes, Antonio Rossano; Beltrão, Antonio Carlos Mariz; Normande, Iran Campello; Malta, Alexandre de Jesus Rodrigues; da Silva Júnior, Antonio Paulo; Santos, André Maurício Melo

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to determine the conservation status of medium- and large-sized mammals and evaluate the impact of 500 years of forest fragmentation on this group of animals in the Pernambuco Endemism Center, in the biogeographical zone of the Atlantic forest north of the São Francisco River in northeastern Brazil. Line transect surveys were performed in 21 forest fragments, resulting in a checklist of the mammals of the entire Pernambuco Endemism Center area. We ran a generalized linear model (Factorial ANCOVA) to analyze to what extent the vegetation type, fragment area, isolation, sampling effort (as total kilometers walked), or higher-order interactions predicted (a) richness and (b) sighting rates. To determine if the distribution of the species within the forest fragments exhibited a nested pattern, we used the NODF metric. Subsequently, we performed a Binomial Logistic Regression to predict the probability of encountering each species according to fragment size. Out of 38 medium- and large-sized mammal species formerly occurring in the study area, only 53.8% (n = 21) were sighted. No fragment hosted the entire remaining mammal community, and only four species (19%) occurred in very small fragments (73.3% of the remaining forest fragments, with a mean size of 2.8 ha). The mammalian community was highly simplified, with all large mammals being regionally extinct. Neither the species richness nor sighting rate was controlled by the vegetation type, the area of the forest fragments, isolation or any higher-order interaction. Although a highly significant nested subset pattern was detected, it was not related to the ranking of the area of forest fragments or isolation. The probability of the occurrence of a mammal species in a given forest patch varied unpredictably, and the probability of detecting larger species was even observed to decrease with increasing patch size. In an ongoing process of mass extinction, half of the studied mammals have gone extinct. The remaining medium-sized mammal community is highly simplified and homogenized. The persistence of these species in a forest patch is determined by their ability to adapt to a novel simplified diet, the efficient use of the surrounding matrix without being engulfed by the sink effect, and escaping hunting. Our results suggest that the 21st century medium-sized mammalian fauna of this region will comprise only four species unless strict conservation measures are implemented immediately and every forest fragment is effectively protected. PMID:27191719

  15. Genetic diversity loss in a biodiversity hotspot: ancient DNA quantifies genetic decline and former connectivity in a critically endangered marsupial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacioni, Carlo; Hunt, Helen; Allentoft, Morten E; Vaughan, Timothy G; Wayne, Adrian F; Baynes, Alexander; Haouchar, Dalal; Dortch, Joe; Bunce, Michael

    2015-12-01

    The extent of genetic diversity loss and former connectivity between fragmented populations are often unknown factors when studying endangered species. While genetic techniques are commonly applied in extant populations to assess temporal and spatial demographic changes, it is no substitute for directly measuring past diversity using ancient DNA (aDNA). We analysed both mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and nuclear microsatellite loci from 64 historical fossil and skin samples of the critically endangered Western Australian woylie (Bettongia penicillata ogilbyi), and compared them with 231 (n = 152 for mtDNA) modern samples. In modern woylie populations 15 mitochondrial control region (CR) haplotypes were identified. Interestingly, mtDNA CR data from only 29 historical samples demonstrated 15 previously unknown haplotypes and detected an extinct divergent clade. Through modelling, we estimated the loss of CR mtDNA diversity to be between 46% and 91% and estimated this to have occurred in the past 2000-4000 years in association with a dramatic population decline. In addition, we obtained near-complete 11-loci microsatellite profiles from 21 historical samples. In agreement with the mtDNA data, a number of 'new' microsatellite alleles was only detected in the historical populations despite extensive modern sampling, indicating a nuclear genetic diversity loss >20%. Calculations of genetic diversity (heterozygosity and allelic rarefaction) showed that these were significantly higher in the past and that there was a high degree of gene flow across the woylie's historical range. These findings have an immediate impact on how the extant populations are managed and we recommend the implementation of an assisted migration programme to prevent further loss of genetic diversity. Our study demonstrates the value of integrating aDNA data into current-day conservation strategies. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Three new species of the genus Trachelas (Araneae: Trachelidae) from an oak forest inside the Mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot in Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera-Quiroz, F Andrés; Alvarez-Padilla, Fernando

    2015-08-07

    Three new species of the spider genus Trachelas L. Koch, 1872 are described and included in the speciosus group based on the following features: embolus as a separate sclerite from the tegulum with no basal coils, legs with a conspicuous fringe of long trichobothria and narrow copulatory ducts coiled irregularly. The new species described are: T. crassus sp. n., T. ductonuda sp. n. and T. odoreus sp. n. A total of 46 specimens were collected in an oak forest near Pico de Orizaba Volcano, Mexico. Most individuals were collected on low vegetation using beating trays and direct collecting at night. Additional images are available at www.unamfcaracnolab.com.

  17. The possibilities and pitfalls presented by a pragmatic approach to ecosystem service valuation in an arid biodiversity hotspot

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    O'Farrell, PJ

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available fauna, �ora, and vulnerable human populations, and present a challenge for sustainable land-use management. We undertook an assessment and valuation of three key services, grazing, tourism and water supply in the arid Succulent Karoo biome in western... these to be areas with a scarcity of services with some of the lowest associated ecosystem service values (Turner et al., 2007). However, some arid areas are home to unique fauna and �ora, as well as vulnerable human populations, which may bene�t from...

  18. Host Ecology Rather Than Host Phylogeny Drives Amphibian Skin Microbial Community Structure in the Biodiversity Hotspot of Madagascar

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Molly C. Bletz

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Host-associated microbiotas of vertebrates are diverse and complex communities that contribute to host health. In particular, for amphibians, cutaneous microbial communities likely play a significant role in pathogen defense; however, our ecological understanding of these communities is still in its infancy. Here, we take advantage of the fully endemic and locally species-rich amphibian fauna of Madagascar to investigate the factors structuring amphibian skin microbiota on a large scale. Using amplicon-based sequencing, we evaluate how multiple host species traits and site factors affect host bacterial diversity and community structure. Madagascar is home to over 400 native frog species, all of which are endemic to the island; more than 100 different species are known to occur in sympatry within multiple rainforest sites. We intensively sampled frog skin bacterial communities, from over 800 amphibians from 89 species across 30 sites in Madagascar during three field visits, and found that skin bacterial communities differed strongly from those of the surrounding environment. Richness of bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTUs and phylogenetic diversity differed among host ecomorphs, with arboreal frogs exhibiting lower richness and diversity than terrestrial and aquatic frogs. Host ecomorphology was the strongest factor influencing microbial community structure, with host phylogeny and site parameters (latitude and elevation explaining less but significant portions of the observed variation. Correlation analysis and topological congruency analyses revealed little to no phylosymbiosis for amphibian skin microbiota. Despite the observed geographic variation and low phylosymbiosis, we found particular OTUs that were differentially abundant between particular ecomorphs. For example, the genus Pigmentiphaga (Alcaligenaceae was significantly enriched on arboreal frogs, Methylotenera (Methylophilaceae was enriched on aquatic frogs, and Agrobacterium (Rhizobiaceae was enriched on terrestrial frogs. The presence of shared bacterial OTUs across geographic regions for selected host genera suggests the presence of core microbial communities which in Madagascar, might be driven more strongly by a species’ preference for specific microhabitats than by the physical, physiological or biochemical properties of their skin. These results corroborate that both host and environmental factors are driving community assembly of amphibian cutaneous microbial communities, and provide an improved foundation for elucidating their role in disease resistance.

  19. Host Ecology Rather Than Host Phylogeny Drives Amphibian Skin Microbial Community Structure in the Biodiversity Hotspot of Madagascar

    OpenAIRE

    Bletz, Molly C.; Archer, Holly; Harris, Reid N.; McKenzie, Valerie J.; Rabemananjara, Falitiana C. E.; Rakotoarison, Andolalao; Vences, Miguel

    2017-01-01

    Host-associated microbiotas of vertebrates are diverse and complex communities that contribute to host health. In particular, for amphibians, cutaneous microbial communities likely play a significant role in pathogen defense; however, our ecological understanding of these communities is still in its infancy. Here, we take advantage of the fully endemic and locally species-rich amphibian fauna of Madagascar to investigate the factors structuring amphibian skin microbiota on a large scale. Usin...

  20. Host Ecology Rather Than Host Phylogeny Drives Amphibian Skin Microbial Community Structure in the Biodiversity Hotspot of Madagascar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bletz, Molly C; Archer, Holly; Harris, Reid N; McKenzie, Valerie J; Rabemananjara, Falitiana C E; Rakotoarison, Andolalao; Vences, Miguel

    2017-01-01

    Host-associated microbiotas of vertebrates are diverse and complex communities that contribute to host health. In particular, for amphibians, cutaneous microbial communities likely play a significant role in pathogen defense; however, our ecological understanding of these communities is still in its infancy. Here, we take advantage of the fully endemic and locally species-rich amphibian fauna of Madagascar to investigate the factors structuring amphibian skin microbiota on a large scale. Using amplicon-based sequencing, we evaluate how multiple host species traits and site factors affect host bacterial diversity and community structure. Madagascar is home to over 400 native frog species, all of which are endemic to the island; more than 100 different species are known to occur in sympatry within multiple rainforest sites. We intensively sampled frog skin bacterial communities, from over 800 amphibians from 89 species across 30 sites in Madagascar during three field visits, and found that skin bacterial communities differed strongly from those of the surrounding environment. Richness of bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTUs) and phylogenetic diversity differed among host ecomorphs, with arboreal frogs exhibiting lower richness and diversity than terrestrial and aquatic frogs. Host ecomorphology was the strongest factor influencing microbial community structure, with host phylogeny and site parameters (latitude and elevation) explaining less but significant portions of the observed variation. Correlation analysis and topological congruency analyses revealed little to no phylosymbiosis for amphibian skin microbiota. Despite the observed geographic variation and low phylosymbiosis, we found particular OTUs that were differentially abundant between particular ecomorphs. For example, the genus Pigmentiphaga (Alcaligenaceae) was significantly enriched on arboreal frogs, Methylotenera (Methylophilaceae) was enriched on aquatic frogs, and Agrobacterium (Rhizobiaceae) was enriched on terrestrial frogs. The presence of shared bacterial OTUs across geographic regions for selected host genera suggests the presence of core microbial communities which in Madagascar, might be driven more strongly by a species' preference for specific microhabitats than by the physical, physiological or biochemical properties of their skin. These results corroborate that both host and environmental factors are driving community assembly of amphibian cutaneous microbial communities, and provide an improved foundation for elucidating their role in disease resistance.

  1. Sequential fragmentation of Pleistocene forests in an East Africa biodiversity hotspot: chameleons as a model to track forest history.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G John Measey

    Full Text Available The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal models of speciation. Dated phylogenies have revealed complex patterns throughout EAM, so we investigated divergence times of forest fauna on four montane isolates in close proximity to determine whether forest break-up was most likely to have been simultaneous or sequential, using population genetics of a forest restricted arboreal chameleon, Kinyongia boehmei.We used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic sequence data and mutation rates from a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to estimate divergence times between montane isolates using a coalescent approach. We found that chameleons on all mountains are most likely to have diverged sequentially within the Pleistocene from 0.93-0.59 Ma (95% HPD 0.22-1.84 Ma. In addition, post-hoc tests on chameleons on the largest montane isolate suggest a population expansion ∼182 Ka.Sequential divergence is most likely to have occurred after the last of three wet periods within the arid Plio-Pleistocene era, but was not correlated with inter-montane distance. We speculate that forest connection persisted due to riparian corridors regardless of proximity, highlighting their importance in the region's historic dispersal events. The population expansion coincides with nearby volcanic activity, which may also explain the relative paucity of the Taita's endemic fauna. Our study shows that forest chameleons are an apposite group to track forest fragmentation, with the inference that forest extended between some EAM during the Pleistocene 1.1-0.9 Ma.

  2. The substantial first impact of bottom fishing on rare biodiversity hotspots: a dilemma for evidence-based conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Cook

    Full Text Available This study describes the impact of the first passage of two types of bottom-towed fishing gear on rare protected shellfish-reefs formed by the horse mussel Modiolus modiolus (L.. One of the study sites was trawled and the other was scallop-dredged. Divers collected HD video imagery of epifauna from quadrats at the two study sites and directed infaunal samples from one site. The total number of epifaunal organisms was significantly reduced following a single pass of a trawl (90% or scallop dredge (59%, as was the diversity of the associated community and the total number of M. modiolus at the trawled site. At both sites declines in anthozoans, hydrozoans, bivalves, echinoderms and ascidians accounted for most of the change. A year later, no recovery was evident at the trawled site and significantly fewer infaunal taxa (polychaetes, malacostracans, bivalves and ophuroids were recorded in the trawl track. The severity of the two types of impact reflected the undisturbed status of the habitats compared to previous studies. As a 'priority habitat' the nature of the impacts described on M. modiolus communities are important to the development of conservation management policy and indicators of condition in Marine Protected Areas (EU Habitats Directive as well as indicators of 'Good Environmental Status' under the European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Conservation managers are under pressure to support decisions with good quality evidence. Elsewhere, indirect studies have shown declines of M. modiolus biogenic communities in fishing grounds. However, given the protected status of the rare habitat, premeditated demonstration of direct impact is unethical or illegal in Marine Protected Areas. This study therefore provides a unique opportunity to investigate the impact from fishing gear whilst at the same time reflecting on the dilemma of evidence-based conservation management.

  3. Rapid characterisation of vegetation structure to predict refugia and climate change impacts across a global biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonius G T Schut

    Full Text Available Identification of refugia is an increasingly important adaptation strategy in conservation planning under rapid anthropogenic climate change. Granite outcrops (GOs provide extraordinary diversity, including a wide range of taxa, vegetation types and habitats in the Southwest Australian Floristic Region (SWAFR. However, poor characterization of GOs limits the capacity of conservation planning for refugia under climate change. A novel means for the rapid identification of potential refugia is presented, based on the assessment of local-scale environment and vegetation structure in a wider region. This approach was tested on GOs across the SWAFR. Airborne discrete return Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR data and Red Green and Blue (RGB imagery were acquired. Vertical vegetation profiles were used to derive 54 structural classes. Structural vegetation types were described in three areas for supervised classification of a further 13 GOs across the region. Habitat descriptions based on 494 vegetation plots on and around these GOs were used to quantify relationships between environmental variables, ground cover and canopy height. The vegetation surrounding GOs is strongly related to structural vegetation types (Kappa = 0.8 and to its spatial context. Water gaining sites around GOs are characterized by taller and denser vegetation in all areas. The strong relationship between rainfall, soil-depth, and vegetation structure (R(2 of 0.8-0.9 allowed comparisons of vegetation structure between current and future climate. Significant shifts in vegetation structural types were predicted and mapped for future climates. Water gaining areas below granite outcrops were identified as important putative refugia. A reduction in rainfall may be offset by the occurrence of deeper soil elsewhere on the outcrop. However, climate change interactions with fire and water table declines may render our conclusions conservative. The LiDAR-based mapping approach presented enables the integration of site-based biotic assessment with structural vegetation types for the rapid delineation and prioritization of key refugia.

  4. Lichens of the family Teloschistaceae in Dagestan, an eastern part of the Caucasian biodiversity hot-spot

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vondrák, Jan; Ismailov, A.; Urbanavichus, G.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 104, č. 4 (2017), s. 483-498 ISSN 0029-5035 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : diversity potential * Russia * Variospora * Xanthocarpia * Caloplaca Subject RIV: EF - Botanics OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 0.941, year: 2016

  5. Sequential Fragmentation of Pleistocene Forests in an East Africa Biodiversity Hotspot: Chameleons as a Model to Track Forest History

    OpenAIRE

    Measey, G. John; Tolley, Krystal A.

    2011-01-01

    Background The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM) is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal...

  6. Sequential fragmentation of Pleistocene forests in an East Africa biodiversity hotspot: chameleons as a model to track forest history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Measey, G John; Tolley, Krystal A

    2011-01-01

    The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM) is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal models of speciation. Dated phylogenies have revealed complex patterns throughout EAM, so we investigated divergence times of forest fauna on four montane isolates in close proximity to determine whether forest break-up was most likely to have been simultaneous or sequential, using population genetics of a forest restricted arboreal chameleon, Kinyongia boehmei. We used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic sequence data and mutation rates from a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to estimate divergence times between montane isolates using a coalescent approach. We found that chameleons on all mountains are most likely to have diverged sequentially within the Pleistocene from 0.93-0.59 Ma (95% HPD 0.22-1.84 Ma). In addition, post-hoc tests on chameleons on the largest montane isolate suggest a population expansion ∼182 Ka. Sequential divergence is most likely to have occurred after the last of three wet periods within the arid Plio-Pleistocene era, but was not correlated with inter-montane distance. We speculate that forest connection persisted due to riparian corridors regardless of proximity, highlighting their importance in the region's historic dispersal events. The population expansion coincides with nearby volcanic activity, which may also explain the relative paucity of the Taita's endemic fauna. Our study shows that forest chameleons are an apposite group to track forest fragmentation, with the inference that forest extended between some EAM during the Pleistocene 1.1-0.9 Ma.

  7. Sequential Fragmentation of Pleistocene Forests in an East Africa Biodiversity Hotspot: Chameleons as a Model to Track Forest History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Measey, G. John; Tolley, Krystal A.

    2011-01-01

    Background The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM) is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal models of speciation. Dated phylogenies have revealed complex patterns throughout EAM, so we investigated divergence times of forest fauna on four montane isolates in close proximity to determine whether forest break-up was most likely to have been simultaneous or sequential, using population genetics of a forest restricted arboreal chameleon, Kinyongia boehmei. Methodology/Principal Findings We used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic sequence data and mutation rates from a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to estimate divergence times between montane isolates using a coalescent approach. We found that chameleons on all mountains are most likely to have diverged sequentially within the Pleistocene from 0.93–0.59 Ma (95% HPD 0.22–1.84 Ma). In addition, post-hoc tests on chameleons on the largest montane isolate suggest a population expansion ∼182 Ka. Conclusions/Significance Sequential divergence is most likely to have occurred after the last of three wet periods within the arid Plio-Pleistocene era, but was not correlated with inter-montane distance. We speculate that forest connection persisted due to riparian corridors regardless of proximity, highlighting their importance in the region's historic dispersal events. The population expansion coincides with nearby volcanic activity, which may also explain the relative paucity of the Taita's endemic fauna. Our study shows that forest chameleons are an apposite group to track forest fragmentation, with the inference that forest extended between some EAM during the Pleistocene 1.1–0.9 Ma. PMID:22053198

  8. Amerindian and Afro-American perceptions of their traditional knowledge in the Chocó biodiversity hotspot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Camara Leret, Rodrigo; Copete Maturana, Juan; Balslev, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    ) current vs. past uses, (iii) and TK transmission. We found 46 useful palm species and 520 different uses of palms. The species that were most important in local peoples’ views also had high use value, a commonly used quantitative index in ethnobotany. Although construction was the most commonly mentioned...

  9. Biodiversity in South East Asia: an overview of freshwater sponges (Porifera: Demospongiae: Spongillina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renata Manconi

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Despite the fact that South East (SE Asia is considered as a biodiversity hotspot, knowledge of sessile invertebrates such as freshwater sponges (Porifera: Haplosclerida: Spongillina in this region is poor and scarcely reported. For this synopsis, diversity and distribution of SE Asian inland water sponges is reported on the basis of available literature and a recent biodiversity assessment of the Lower Mekong basin. A diagnostic key of families/genera from SE Asia is provided together with Light Microscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy protocols to prepare the basic spicular complement for taxonomic identification. So far, SE Asian freshwater sponges consist of widespread and/or endemic species belonging to the families Metaniidae, Potamolepidae, and Spongillidae. The highest diversity is recorded from Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, and Myanmar, respectively. Data from the other countries are necessary for our understanding of their diversity and distribution. Biodiversity in SE Asia is strongly underestimated, as indicated by recent new records and the discovery of new species of freshwater sponges in Thailand. Further investigations should reveal higher values of taxonomic richness, highlighting biogeographic patterns at the family/genus/species levels. A cooperative network involving Thai, Laotian and Italian researchers, was set up to contribute and fulfil knowledge on taxonomy, ecology and biotechnological potentialities of these neglected filter feeders, playing a key role in water purification and biomass production in both lentic and lotic ecosystems in the tropics.

  10. Can Environmental Education Actions Change Public Attitudes? An Example Using the Pond Habitat and Associated Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sousa, Eunice; Quintino, Victor; Palhas, Jael; Rodrigues, Ana Maria; Teixeira, José

    2016-01-01

    Ponds provide vital ecological services. They are biodiversity hotspots and important breading sites for rare and endangered species, including amphibians and dragonflies. Nevertheless, their number is decreasing due to habitat degradation caused by human activities. The "Ponds with Life" environmental education project was developed to raise public awareness and engagement in the study of ponds by promoting the direct contact between the public and nature, researchers and pedagogical hands-on exploration activities. A pre-post- project survey was set-up to assess the effects of the project on the environmental consciousness, knowledge and attitude changes towards ponds and the associated biodiversity of school students aged 15 to 18. The survey questions were based on Likert scales and their pre-post project comparisons used an innovative multivariate hypothesis testing approach. The results showed that the project improved the students' knowledge and attitudes towards ponds and associated biodiversity, especially the amphibians. Ponds can be found or constructed in urban areas and despite small sized, they proved to be interesting model habitats and living laboratories to foster environmental education, by encompassing a high number of species and a fast ecological succession.

  11. Seismic Evidence for Lower Mantle Plume Under the Yellowstone Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, P.; Grand, S.

    2017-12-01

    The mantle plume hypothesis for the origin of intraplate volcanism has been controversial since its inception in the 1970s. The hypothesis proposes hot narrow upwelling of rock rooted at the core mantle boundary (CMB) rise through the mantle and interact with the base of the lithosphere forming linear volcanic systems such as Hawaii and Yellowstone. Recently, broad lower mantle (>500 km in diameter) slow velocity conduits, most likely thermochemical in origin, have been associated with some intraplate volcanic provinces (French and Romanowicz, 2015). However, the direct detection of a classical thin thermal plume in the lower mantle using travel time tomography has remained elusive (Anderson and Natland, 2014). Here we present a new shear wave tomography model for the mantle beneath the western United States that is optimized to find short wavelength, sub-vertical structures in the lower mantle. Our approach uses carefully measured SKS and SKKS travel times recorded by dense North American seismic networks in conjunction with finite frequency kernels to build on existing tomography models. We find the presence of a narrow ( 300 km diameter) well isolated cylindrically shaped slow anomaly in the lower most mantle which we associate with the Yellowstone Hotspot. The conduit has a 2% reduction in shear velocity and is rooted at the CMB near the California/Arizona/Nevada border. A cross sectional view through the anomaly shows that it is slightly tilted toward the north until about 1300 km depth where it appears to weaken and deflect toward the surficial positon of the hotspot. Given the anomaly's strength, proximity to the Yellowstone Hotspot, and morphology we argue that a thermal plume interpretation is the most reasonable. Our results provide strong support for a lower mantle plume origin of the Yellowstone hotspot and more importantly the existence of deep thermal plumes.

  12. Dynamics of Reactive Microbial Hotspots in Concentration Gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubert, A.; Farasin, J.; Tabuteau, H.; Dufresne, A.; Meheust, Y.; Le Borgne, T.

    2017-12-01

    In subsurface environments, bacteria play a major role in controlling the kinetics of a broad range of biogeochemical reactions. In such environments, nutrients fluxes and solute concentrations needed for bacteria metabolism may be highly variable in space and intermittent in time. This can lead to the formation of reactive hotspots where and when conditions are favorable to particular microorganisms, hence inducing biogeochemical reaction kinetics that differ significantly from those measured in homogeneous model environments. To investigate the impact of chemical gradients on the spatial structure and temporal dynamics of subsurface microorganism populations, we develop microfluidic cells allowing for a precise control of flow and chemical gradient conditions, as well as quantitative monitoring of the bacteria's spatial distribution and biofilm development. Using the non-motile Escherichia coli JW1908-1 strain and Gallionella capsiferriformans ES-2 as model organisms, we investigate the behavior and development of bacteria over a range of single and double concentration gradients in the concentrations of nutrients, electron donors and electron acceptors. We measure bacterial activity and population growth locally in precisely known hydrodynamic and chemical environments. This approach allows time-resolved monitoring of the location and intensity of reactive hotspots in micromodels as a function of the flow and chemical gradient conditions. We compare reactive microbial hotspot dynamics in our micromodels to classic growth laws and well-known growth parameters for the laboratory model bacteria Escherichia coli.We also discuss consequences for the formation and temporal dynamics of biofilms in the subsurface.

  13. BENCHMARKING UPGRADED HOTSPOT DOSE CALCULATIONS AGAINST MACCS2 RESULTS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brotherton, Kevin

    2009-04-30

    The radiological consequence of interest for a documented safety analysis (DSA) is the centerline Total Effective Dose Equivalent (TEDE) incurred by the Maximally Exposed Offsite Individual (MOI) evaluated at the 95th percentile consequence level. An upgraded version of HotSpot (Version 2.07) has been developed with the capabilities to read site meteorological data and perform the necessary statistical calculations to determine the 95th percentile consequence result. These capabilities should allow HotSpot to join MACCS2 (Version 1.13.1) and GENII (Version 1.485) as radiological consequence toolbox codes in the Department of Energy (DOE) Safety Software Central Registry. Using the same meteorological data file, scenarios involving a one curie release of {sup 239}Pu were modeled in both HotSpot and MACCS2. Several sets of release conditions were modeled, and the results compared. In each case, input parameter specifications for each code were chosen to match one another as much as the codes would allow. The results from the two codes are in excellent agreement. Slight differences observed in results are explained by algorithm differences.

  14. Root reinforcement and its contribution to slope stability in the Western Ghats of Kerala, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukose Kuriakose, Sekhar; van Beek, L. P. H.