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Sample records for high mountain habitat

  1. Mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) grouping based on larval habitat characteristics in high mountain ecosystems of Antioquia, Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosero-García, Doris; Rúa-Uribe, Guillermo; Correa, Margarita M; Conn, Jan E; Uribe-Soto, Sandra

    2018-06-01

    Information about mosquito ecology in the high mountain ecosystems of the Neotropical region is sparse. In general, few genera and species have been reported in these ecosystems and there is no information available on habitats and the mosquitoes occupying them. In the present study, specimens collected from NW Colombia in HME were grouped using larval habitat data via an Operational Taxonomic Unit (OTU) determination. A total of 719 mosquitoes was analyzed belonging to 44 OTUs. The analysis considered habitat features and clustered the specimens into six groups from A-F. Five of these included species from different genera, suggesting common habitat requirements. Group E with four genera, seven subgenera, and six species occupied the highest areas (above 3,000 m), whereas three groups (B, D, F) were detected at lower altitudes (1,960-2,002 m). Bromeliads were the most common larval habitat, with 47% (335/719) of the specimens; five genera, six subgenera, and eight species were identified and classified into 66% (29/44) of the OTUs. This work showed some similarities to the habitat requirements and provides a grouping system that constitutes an important baseline for the classification of mosquito fauna from high mountain ecosystems according to altitude and larval habitat. © 2018 The Society for Vector Ecology.

  2. A bioclimatic characterization of high elevation habitats in the Alborz mountains of Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noroozi, Jalil; Körner, Christian

    2018-01-01

    The Alborz mountains in N-Iran at 36° N rise from the Caspian Sea to 5671 m a.s.l., with warm-temperate, winter-deciduous forests in the lower montane belt in northern slopes, and vast treeless terrain at higher elevation. A lack of rainfall (ca. 550 mm at high elevations) cannot explain the absence of trees. Hence, it is an open question, which parts of these mountains belong to the alpine belt. Here we use bioclimatic data to estimate the position of the potential climatic treeline, and thus, define bioclimatologically, what is alpine and what is not. We employed the same miniature data loggers and protocol that had been applied in a Europe-wide assessment of alpine climates and a global survey of treeline temperatures. The data suggest a potential treeline position at ca. 3300 m a.s.l., that is ca. 900 m above the upper edge of the current oak forest, or 450 m above its highest outposts. The alpine terrain above the climatic treeline position shows a temperature regime comparable to sites in the European Alps. At the upper limit of angiosperm life, at 4850 m a.s.l., the growing season lasted 63 days with a seasonal mean root zone temperature of 4.5 °C. We conclude that (1) the absence of trees below 2850 m a.s.l. is clearly due to millennia of land use. The absence of trees between 2850 and 3300 m a.s.l. is either due to the absence of suitable tree taxa, or the only potential regional taxon for those elevations, Juniperus excelsa , had been eradicated by land use as well. (2) These continental mountains provide thermal life conditions in the alpine belt similar to other temperate mountains. (3) Topography and snow melt regimes play a significant role for the structure of the alpine vegetation mosaics.

  3. Specialized or opportunistic-how does the high mountain endemic butterfly Erebia nivalis survive in its extreme habitats?

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    Ehl, Stefan; Dalstein, Vivian; Tull, Fabienne; Gros, Patrick; Schmitt, Thomas

    2018-02-01

    High mountain ecosystems are a challenge for the survival of animal and plant species, which have to evolve specific adaptations to cope with the prevailing extreme conditions. The strategies to survive may reach from opportunistic to highly adapted traits. One species successfully surviving under these conditions is the here studied butterfly Erebia nivalis. In a mark-release-recapture study performed in the Hohe Tauern National Park (Austria) from 22 July to 26 August 2013, we marked 1386 individuals and recaptured 342 of these. For each capture event, we recorded the exact point of capture and various other traits (wing conditions, behavior, nectar sources). The population showed a partial protandrous demography with the minority of males emerging prior to the females, but the majority being synchronized with them. Males and females differed significantly in their behavior with males being more flight active and females nectaring and resting more. Both sexes showed preferences for the same plant species as nectar sources, but this specialization apparently is the result of a rapid individual adaptation to the locally available flowers. Estimates of the realized dispersal distances predicted a comparatively high amount of long-distance flights, especially for females. Therefore, the adaptation of Erebia nivalis to the unpredictable high mountain conditions might be a mixture of opportunism and specialized traits. © 2016 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  4. CURRENT MICROBIOLOGICAL ASPECTS IN HIGH MOUNTAIN

    OpenAIRE

    KURT HANSELMANN; MUNTI YUHANA

    2006-01-01

    Remote and normally unpolluted high mountain lakes provide habitats with no or very limited anthropogenic influences and, therefore, their hydrodynamics are mostly regulated by the natural c onditions. Researches in high mountain lakes deal with measuring and modeling the response of the habitats to environmental changes especially correlated to acid deposition, pollutants influx and climatic variability. The microbial world has also become a focus in many studies of these extreme ecosystem...

  5. HABITAT AND HABITANTS IN THE CATALAN PYRENEES: DYNAMICS AND POLICIES FOR UNDER-POPULATED HIGH MOUNTAIN VILLAGES

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    Maria Rosa Bonet Casas

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper is the result of a research carried out in 2006 in a partnership between the Universitat de Barcelona and the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, which was aimed to define guidelines to recover the architectural and scenic values of villages in almost abandoned Pyrenean valleys in Catalunya. The research studied at different levels (geographical, urban and architectural the villages of several valleys in order to find out the factors more determinant to explain their degree of revitalization or decay. As a result of the research, the paper presents some conclusions on how to intervene on those pyrenean valleys: to work at the level of geographical units rather than with singular villages or individuals; to establish degrees of priority of intervention between the valleys in order to increase the efficiency of the actions; to ensure high quality infrastructure levels on the selected valleys; to fix strict limits to the construction of new vacation houses in high mountain villages in order to orient the real state demand to the rehabilitation of existing buildings; to create a program of subsidies to help the permanent population working on the primary sector to rehabilitate their dwellings; to promote the display of the natural and cultural richness of the valleys as a main factor for their revitalization; to support private and civic actions oriented to the recover of the valleys.

  6. Background radiation dose-rates to non-human biota in a high mountain habitat in Norway

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brown, J.E.; Gelsvik, R.; Kålås, J.A.

    2009-01-01

    concerning these radioisotopes for components of the ecosystem, field work was conducted in a semi-natural, mountainous location in central Norway. Preliminary (since no correction was made for ingrowth from 210Pb) whole-body activity concentrations of 210Po in 2 species of small mammal were commensurate...

  7. Landforms of High Mountains

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    Derek A. McDougall

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: Landforms of High Mountains. By Alexander Stahr and Ewald Langenscheidt. Heidelberg, Germany: Springer, 2015. viii + 158 pp. US$ 129.99. Also available as an e-book. ISBN 978-3-642-53714-1.

  8. Seasonal habitat selection of the red deer (Cervus elaphus alxaicus in the Helan Mountains, China

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    Mingming Zhang

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available We studied the seasonal habitat selection of the red deer, Cervus elaphus alxaicus Bobrinskii & Flerov, 1935, in the Helan Mountains, China, from December 2007 to December 2008. Habitat selection varied widely by season. Seasonal movements between high and low elevations were attributed to changes in forage availability, alpine topography, the arid climate of the Helan Mountains, and potential competition with blue sheep, Pseudois nayaur (Hodgson, 1833. The use of vegetation types varied seasonally according to food availability and ambient temperature. Red deer used montane coniferous forest and alpine shrub and meadow zones distributed above 2,000 m and 3,000 m in summer, alpine shrub and meadows above 3,000 m in autumn, being restricted to lower elevation habitats in spring and winter. The winter habitat of C. elaphus alxaicus was dominated by Ulmus glaucescens Franch. and Juglans regia Linnaeus, deciduous trees, and differed from the habitats selected by other subspecies of red deer. Cervus elaphus alxaicus preferred habitats with abundant vegetation coverage to open habitats in winter, but the reverse pattern was observed in summer and autumn. Red deer preferred gentle slopes (<10° but the use of slope gradient categories varied seasonally. Red deer avoidance of human disturbance in the Helan Mountains varied significantly by season. Information on red deer habitat selection can help understand the factors affecting seasonal movements and also support decision making in the management and conservation of red deer and their habitats.

  9. Rocky Mountain High.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, David

    2001-01-01

    Describes Colorado's Eagle Rock School, which offers troubled teens a fresh start by transporting them to a tuition- free campus high in the mountains. The program encourages spiritual development as well as academic growth. The atmosphere is warm, loving, structured, and nonthreatening. The article profiles several students' experiences at the…

  10. Climate change and mountain Grouse: recent evidences from alpine habitats

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    Brugnoli A

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Current climate change, referring as well to the observed rain and temperature patterns as to the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather conditions, has a deep influence on biotic communities and, in particular, on mountain Grouse. These species show great adaptation to coldness, are highly sedentary and have quite “strict” ecological requirements, when it deals with habitat selection. Moreover, their alpine ranges are dangerously marginal to the main distribution areas, which increases the risk of dramatic changes in occurrence, demography and ecology. However, not all the species will predictably be exposed in the same way to the menace of climate change over the next 50-100 years. This article gives a brief review of the main data acquired in the alpine environment in this matter. It also underlines the utmost need to proceed with research and monitoring activities, in order to effectively adapt and manage conservation strategies on mid-long terms.

  11. Spiders in mountain habitats of the Giant Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil; Vaněk, J.; Šmilauer, P.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 43, č. 4 (2012), s. 341-347 ISSN 1067-4136 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : Giant Mountains (Krkonoše, Karkonosze) * spider s * anemo-orographic systems Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.236, year: 2012 http://www.springerlink.com/content/0k5g721q1155r146/fulltext.pdf

  12. Habitat and nesting biology of Mountain Plovers in Wyoming

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    Plumb, R.E.; Anderson, S.H.; Knopf, F.L.

    2005-01-01

    Although previous research has considered habitat associations and breeding biology of Mountain Plovers in Wyoming at discrete sites, no study has considered these attributes at a statewide scale. We located 55 Mountain Plover nests in 6 counties across Wyoming during 2002 and 2003. Nests occurred in 2 general habitat types: grassland and desert-shrub. Mean estimated hatch date was 26 June (n = 31) in 2002 and 21 June (n = 24) in 2003. Mean hatch date was not related to latitude or elevation. Hatch success of nests was inferred in 2003 by the presence of eggshell fragments in the nest scrape. Eggs in 14 of 22 (64%) known-fate nests hatched. All grassland sites and 90% of desert sites were host to ungulate grazers, although prairie dogs were absent at 64% of nest sites. Nest plots had less grass coverage and reduced grass height compared with random plots. More than 50% of nests occurred on elevated plateaus. The Mountain Plover's tendency to nest on arid, elevated plateaus further substantiates claims that the bird is also a disturbed-prairie species.

  13. Modeling mountain pine beetle habitat suitability within Sequoia National Park

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    Nguyen, Andrew

    Understanding significant changes in climate and their effects on timber resources can help forest managers make better decisions regarding the preservation of natural resources and land management. These changes may to alter natural ecosystems dependent on historical and current climate conditions. Increasing mountain pine beetle (MBP) outbreaks within the southern Sierra Nevada are the result of these alterations. This study better understands MPB behavior within Sequoia National Park (SNP) and model its current and future habitat distribution. Variables contributing to MPB spread are vegetation stress, soil moisture, temperature, precipitation, disturbance, and presence of Ponderosa (Pinus ponderosa) and Lodgepole (Pinus contorta) pine trees. These variables were obtained using various modeled, insitu, and remotely sensed sources. The generalized additive model (GAM) was used to calculate the statistical significance of each variable contributing to MPB spread and also created maps identifying habitat suitability. Results indicate vegetation stress and forest disturbance to be variables most indicative of MPB spread. Additionally, the model was able to detect habitat suitability of MPB with a 45% accuracy concluding that a geospatial driven modeling approach can be used to delineate potential MPB spread within SNP.

  14. Habitat characteristics at den sites of the Point Arena mountain beaver (Aplodontia rufa nigra)

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    William J. Zielinski; John E. Hunter; Robin Hamlin; Keith M. Slauson; M. J. Mazurek

    2010-01-01

    The Point Arena mountain beaver (Aplodontia rufa nigra) is a federally listed endangered species, but has been the subject of few studies. Mountain beavers use burrows that include a single subterranean den. Foremost among the information needs for this subspecies is a description of the above-ground habitat features associated with dens. Using...

  15. Habitat assessment for giant pandas in the Qinling Mountain region of China

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    Feng, Tian-Tian; Van Manen, Frank T.; Zhao, Na-Xun; Li, Ming; Wei, Fu-Wen

    2009-01-01

    Because habitat loss and fragmentation threaten giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca), habitat protection and restoration are important conservation measures for this endangered species. However, distribution and value of potential habitat to giant pandas on a regional scale are not fully known. Therefore, we identified and ranked giant panda habitat in Foping Nature Reserve, Guanyinshan Nature Reserve, and adjacent areas in the Qinling Mountains of China. We used Mahalanobis distance and 11 digital habitat layers to develop a multivariate habitat signature associated with 247 surveyed giant panda locations, which we then applied to the study region. We identified approximately 128 km2 of giant panda habitat in Foping Nature Reserve (43.6% of the reserve) and 49 km2 in Guanyinshan Nature Reserve (33.6% of the reserve). We defined core habitat areas by incorporating a minimum patch-size criterion (5.5 km2) based on home-range size. Percentage of core habitat area was higher in Foping Nature Reserve (41.8% of the reserve) than Guanyinshan Nature Reserve (26.3% of the reserve). Within the larger analysis region, Foping Nature Reserve contained 32.7% of all core habitat areas we identified, indicating regional importance of the reserve. We observed a negative relationship between distribution of core areas and presence of roads and small villages. Protection of giant panda habitat at lower elevations and improvement of habitat linkages among core habitat areas are important in a regional approach to giant panda conservation.

  16. Bat habitat use in White Mountain National Forest

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    Rachel A. Krusic; Mariko Yamasaki; Christopher D. Neefus; Peter J. Pekins

    1996-01-01

    In 1992 and 1993, we surveyed the foraging and feeding activity of bat species with broadband bat detectors at 2 foliage heights in 4 age classes of northern hardwood and spruce/fir forest stands in White Mountain National Forest, New Hampshire and Maine. The association of bat activity with trails and water bodies and the effect of elevation were measured. Mist nets,...

  17. Book Review :The Essential Guide to Rocky Mountain Mushrooms by Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    A mushroom guide book, 'The Essential Guide to Rocky Mountain Mushrooms by Habitat' by Cathy L. Cripps, Vera S. Evenson, and Michael Kou (University of Illinois Press, 260 pages), is reviewed in non-technical fashion from the standpoints of format, comprehensiveness, and clarity. Postive features (...

  18. Habitat-effectiveness index for elk on Blue Mountain Winter Ranges.

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    Jack Ward Thomas; Donavin A. Leckenby; Mark Henjum; Richard J. Pedersen; Larry D. Bryant

    1988-01-01

    An elk-habitat evaluation procedure for winter ranges in the Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon and Washington is described. The index is based on an interaction of size and spacing of cover and forage areas, roads open to traffic per unit of area, cover quality, and quantity and quality of forage.

  19. Density and Habitat Relationships of the Endemic White Mountain Fritillary (Boloria chariclea montinus (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae

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    Kent P. McFarland

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available We conducted point counts in the alpine zone of the Presidential Range of the White Mountains, New Hampshire, USA, to estimate the distribution and density of the rare endemic White Mountain Fritillary (Boloria chariclea montinus. Incidence of occurrence and density of the endemic White Mountain Fritillary during surveys in 2012 and 2013 were greatest in the herbaceous-snowbank plant community. Densities at points in the heath-shrub-rush plant community were lower, but because this plant community is more widespread in the alpine zone, it likely supports the bulk of adult fritillaries. White Mountain Fritillary used cushion-tussock, the other alpine plant community suspected of providing habitat, only sparingly. Detectability of White Mountain Fritillaries varied as a consequence of weather conditions during the survey and among observers, suggesting that raw counts yield biased estimates of density and abundance. Point counts, commonly used to study and monitor populations of birds, were an effective means of sampling White Mountain Fritillary in the alpine environment where patches of habitat are small, irregularly shaped, and widely spaced, rendering line-transect methods inefficient and difficult to implement.

  20. Impacts of temperature on giant panda habitat in the north Minshan Mountains.

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    Liu, Gang; Guan, Tianpei; Dai, Qiang; Li, Huixin; Gong, Minghao

    2016-02-01

    Understanding the impacts of meteorological factors on giant pandas is necessary for future conservation measures in response to global climate change. We integrated temperature data with three main habitat parameters (elevation, vegetation type, and bamboo species) to evaluate the influence of climate change on giant panda habitat in the northern Minshan Mountains using a habitat assessment model. Our study shows that temperature (relative importance = 25.1%) was the second most important variable influencing giant panda habitat excepting the elevation. There was a significant negative correlation between temperature and panda presence (ρ = -0.133, P pandas within the study area was 18-21°C, followed by 15-17°C and 22-24°C. The overall suitability of giant panda habitats will increase by 2.7%, however, it showed a opposite variation patterns between the eastern and northwestern region of the study area. Suitable and subsuitable habitats in the northwestern region of the study area, which is characterized by higher elevation and latitude, will increase by 18007.8 hm(2) (9.8% habitat suitability), while the eastern region will suffer a decrease of 9543.5 hm(2) (7.1% habitat suitability). Our results suggest that increasing areas of suitable giant panda habitat will support future giant panda expansion, and food shortage and insufficient living space will not arise as problems in the northwest Minshan Mountains, which means that giant pandas can adapt to climate change, and therefore may be resilient to climate change. Thus, for the safety and survival of giant pandas in the Baishuijiang Reserve, we propose strengthening the giant panda monitoring program in the west and improving the integrity of habitats to promote population dispersal with adjacent populations in the east.

  1. Habitat use by mountain nyala Tragelaphus buxtoni determined using stem bite diameters at point of browse, bite rates, and time budgets in the Bale Mountains National Park, Ethiopia

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    Solomon A. TADESSE, Burt P. KOTLER

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available We studied the habitat use of mountain nyala Tragelaphus buxtoni in the northern edge of the Bale Mountains National Park, Ethiopia. The aims of this study were to: (1 measure and quantify habitat-specific stem bite diameters of mountain nyala foraging on common natural plant species in two major habitat types (i.e. grasslands versus woodlands, and (2 quantify the bite rates (number of bites per minute and the activity time budgets of mountain nyala as functions of habitat type and sex-age category. We randomly laid out three transects in each habitat type. Following each transect, through focal animal observations, we assessed and quantified stem diameters at point of browse (dpb, bite rates, and time budgets of mountain nyala in grasslands versus woodlands. Stem dpb provide a measure of natural giving-up densities (GUDs and can be used to assess foraging costs and efficiencies, with greater stem dpb corresponding to lower costs and greater efficiencies. The results showed that stem dpb, bite rates, induced vigilance, and proportion of time spent in feeding differed between habitats. In particular, mountain nyala had greater stem dpb, higher bite rates, and spent a greater proportion of their time in feeding and less in induced vigilance in the grasslands. In addition, adult females had the highest bite rates, and the browse species Solanum marginatum had the greatest stem dpb. Generally, grasslands provide the mountain nyala with several advantages over the woodlands, including offering lower foraging costs, greater safety, and more time for foraging. The study advocates how behavioural indicators and natural GUDs are used to examine the habitat use of the endangered mountain nyala through applying non-invasive techniques. We conclude that the resulting measures are helpful for guiding conservation and management efforts and could be applicable to a number of endangered wildlife species including the mountain nyala [Current Zoology 59 (6 : 707

  2. Effects of natural-channel-design restoration on habitat quality in Catskill Mountain streams, New York

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    Ernst, Anne G.; Baldigo, Barry P.; Mulvihill, Christiane; Vian, Mark

    2010-01-01

    Stream restoration has received much attention in recent years, yet there has been little effort to evaluate its impacts on physical habitat, stability, and biota. A popular but controversial stream restoration approach is natural channel design (NCD), which cannot be adequately evaluated without a long-term, independent assessment of its effects on stream habitat. Six reaches of five Catskill Mountain streams in southeastern New York were restored during 2000–2003 following NCD techniques to decrease bed and bank degradation, decrease sediment loads, and improve water quality. Habitat surveys were conducted during summer low flows from 2001 to 2007. The effects of the NCD projects on stream condition were assessed via a before–after–control–impact study design to quantify the net changes in stream and bank habitat variables relative to those in unaltered control reaches. Analysis of variance tests of three different measures of bank stability show that on average stream stability increased at treatment sites for 2–5 years after restoration. Mean channel depth, thalweg depth, and the pool–riffle ratio generally increased, whereas mean channel width, percent streambank coverage by trees, and shade decreased. Habitat suitability indices for local salmonid species increased at four of six reaches after restoration. The changes in channel dimensions rendered them generally more characteristic of stabler stream forms in the given valley settings. Although these studies were done relatively soon after project completion, our findings demonstrate that habitat conditions can be improved in degraded Catskill Mountain streams through NCD restoration.

  3. Enhanced sediment delivery in a changing climate in semi-arid mountain basins: Implications for water resource management and aquatic habitat in the northern Rocky Mountains

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    Jaime R. Goode; Charles H. Luce; John M. Buffington

    2012-01-01

    The delivery and transport of sediment through mountain rivers affects aquatic habitat and water resource infrastructure. While climate change is widely expected to produce significant changes in hydrology and stream temperature, the effects of climate change on sediment yield have received less attention. In the northern Rocky Mountains, we expect climate change to...

  4. The influence of variable snowpacks on habitat use by mountain caribou

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    Trevor A. Kinley

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Mountain caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou in southeastern British Columbia subsist for most of the winter on arboreal hair lichen, mostly Bryoria spp. Foraging occurs mainly in old subalpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa forests near treeline. Here, the lower limit of Bryoria in the canopy is dictated by snowpack depth because hair lichens die when buried in snow. Bryoria is often beyond the reach of caribou in early winter, prompting caribou to move downslope to where lichen occurs lower in the canopy and other foraging modes are possible. Snowpacks are normally deep enough by late winter that caribou can reach Bryoria where it is most abundant, at high elevations. Extending this to inter-annual comparisons, Bryoria should be less accessible during late winter of low-snow years following normal winters, or of normal to low-snow years after deep-snow winters. We hypothesized that when maximum snowpack in late winter is low relative to the deepest of the previous 5 years, mountain caribou will use lower elevations to facilitate foraging (“lichen-snow-caribou” or LSC hypothesis. We tested this with late-winter data from 13 subpopulations. In the dry climatic region generally and for minor snowfall differences in wet and very wet regions, caribou did not shift downslope or in fact were at higher elevations during relatively low-snow years, possibly reflecting the ease of locomotion. The LSC hypothesis was supported within wet and very wet regions when snowpacks were about 1 m or more lower than in recent years. Elevation declined by 300 m (median to 600 m (25th percentile for snowpack differences of at least 1.5 m. Greater use of lodgepole pine and western hemlock stands sometimes also occurred. Management strategies emphasizing subalpine fir stands near treeline should be re-examined to ensure protection of a broader range of winter habitats used by caribou under variable snowpack conditions.

  5. Influence of discharge on fish habitat suitability curves in mountain watercourses in IFIM methodology

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    Macura Viliam

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study, the quality of the aquatic habitats of mountain and piedmont streams was evaluated using the ‘Instream Flow Incremental Methodology (IFIM’ decision-making tool. The quality of habitats was interpreted from the behaviour of bioindicators in the form of habitat suitability curves (HSCs. From 1995 until the present, 59 different reaches of 43 mountain streams in Slovakia and 3 validation reaches were evaluated, and the results analysed. The aim of this study was to generalize the parameters of the HSCs for the brown trout. The generalized curves will be useful for water management planning. It is difficult and time-consuming to take hydrometrical and ichthyological measurements at different water levels. Therefore, we developed a methodology for modifying suitability curves based on an ichthyological survey during a low flow and a flow at which fish lose the ability to resist the flow velocity. The study provides the information how such curves can be modified for a wider flow range. In summary, this study shows that generalized HSCs provide representative data that can be used to support both the design of river restoration and the assessment of the impacts of the water use or of climate change on stream habitat quality.

  6. Landscape genetics of high mountain frog metapopulations

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    Murphy, M.A.; Dezzani, R.; Pilliod, D.S.; Storfer, A.

    2010-01-01

    Explaining functional connectivity among occupied habitats is crucial for understanding metapopulation dynamics and species ecology. Landscape genetics has primarily focused on elucidating how ecological features between observations influence gene flow. Functional connectivity, however, may be the result of both these between-site (landscape resistance) landscape characteristics and at-site (patch quality) landscape processes that can be captured using network based models. We test hypotheses of functional connectivity that include both between-site and at-site landscape processes in metapopulations of Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) by employing a novel justification of gravity models for landscape genetics (eight microsatellite loci, 37 sites, n = 441). Primarily used in transportation and economic geography, gravity models are a unique approach as flow (e.g. gene flow) is explained as a function of three basic components: distance between sites, production/attraction (e.g. at-site landscape process) and resistance (e.g. between-site landscape process). The study system contains a network of nutrient poor high mountain lakes where we hypothesized a short growing season and complex topography between sites limit R. luteiventris gene flow. In addition, we hypothesized production of offspring is limited by breeding site characteristics such as the introduction of predatory fish and inherent site productivity. We found that R. luteiventris connectivity was negatively correlated with distance between sites, presence of predatory fish (at-site) and topographic complexity (between-site). Conversely, site productivity (as measured by heat load index, at-site) and growing season (as measured by frost-free period between-sites) were positively correlated with gene flow. The negative effect of predation and positive effect of site productivity, in concert with bottleneck tests, support the presence of source-sink dynamics. In conclusion, gravity models provide a

  7. Erigeron mancus (Asteraceae) density as a baseline to detect future climate change in La Sal Mountain habitats

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    James F. Fowler; Barb Smith

    2010-01-01

    The La Sal Daisy, Erigeron mancus Rydb., is endemic to timberline and alpine habitats of the La Sal Mountains in Utah, an insular, laccolithic mountain range on the Colorado Plateau in southeastern Utah. It occurs in alpine herbaceous communities from timberline to the crestline of the La Sals. Our primary goal in this study was to measure basic population biology...

  8. Influence of mountain pine beetle epidemic on winter habitat conditions for Merriam's turkeys: Management implications for current and future condition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chadwick P. Lehman; Mark A. Rumble; Michael A. Battaglia; Todd R. Mills; Lance A. Asherin

    2016-01-01

    Understanding response of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forest development following a mountain pine beetle (MPB; Dendroctonus ponderosae) epidemic has important management implications for winter habitat conditions for Merriam’s wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo merriami; hereafter, turkeys). Therefore, we quantified habitat changes over time for turkeys...

  9. Use of summer habitat by caribou on the north slope of a mountain near the Macmillan Pass, N.W.T.

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    James F. Quayle

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available Habitat use by woodland caribou was investigated by counting pellet-groups, sampling phytomass, and evaluating topography in nine habitat-types on the north slope of an unnamed mountain near Macmillan Pass, N.W.T. Caribou pellets were most abundant in high elevation habitat-types, and pellet density was greatest in an alpine Lichen-Grass habitat-type with a slope of <1°. The high density of pellets in alpine areas may have resulted from of the use of cool, windy, alpine habitats by caribou seeking relief from insect harassment. There were no apparent relationships between pellet abundance, and phytomass of mosses, lichens, or graminoids, possibly as a result of caribou feeding and defecating in different habitats. The occurrence of pellets with a coalesced morphology in the barren Lichen-Grass habitat-type provided indirect evidence in support of a feeding cycle, whereby caribou visit lush habitats to feed, and return to open, alpine habitats to rest and ruminate.

  10. Diet of desert tortoises at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, and implications for habitat reclamation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rakestraw, D.L.; Holt, E.A.; Rautenstrauch, K.R.

    1995-12-01

    The diet of desert tortoises at Yucca Mountain was assessed during 1992 to 1995 using a combination of feeding observations and scat analysis. Feeding observation data (1993 through 1995) showed that tortoises fed on a wide variety of items. The most frequently eaten items were forbs and annual grasses. These two forage groups comprised more than 90% of all bites taken. Analysis of scat (1992 and 1993) also showed that grasses and forbs were the most common groups, making up more than 80% of the composition of scat. Yearly differences between proportions of species in the diet were observed and were most likely attributable to differences in plant productivity, which is linked to rainfall patterns. Non-native species were an important component of the diet in all years, accounting for 13 to 50% of all bites observed and 6 to 24% of scat contents. A list of all items encountered in the diet is provided. To facilitate reclamation of desert tortoise habitat disturbed by the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project, native forage species that should be included in reclamation seed mixes, when feasible, were identified. Although shrubs make up only a small proportion of the diet, they should also be included in reclamation efforts because they provide habitat structure. Tortoise cover sites, and microhabitats amenable to seed germination and seedling establishment. In addition, non-native species should not be planted on reclaimed sites and, if necessary, sites should be recontoured and soil compaction reduced prior to planting

  11. Habitat associations of three crayfish endemic to the Ouachita Mountain Ecoregion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyer, Joseph J.; Brewer, Shannon K.

    2018-01-01

    Many crayfish are of conservation concern because of their use of unique habitats and often narrow ranges. In this study, we determined fine-scale habitat use by 3 crayfishes that are endemic to the Ouachita Mountains, in Oklahoma and Arkansas. We sampled Faxonius menae (Mena Crayfish), F. leptogonopodus (Little River Creek Crayfish), and Fallicambarus tenuis (Ouachita Mountain Crayfish) from wet and dry erosional channel units of 29 reaches within the Little River catchment. We compared channel-unit and microhabitat selection for each species. Crayfish of all species and life stages selected erosional channel units more often than depositional units, even though these sites were often dry. Accordingly, crayfish at all life stages typically selected the shallowest available microhabitats. Adult crayfish of all species and juvenile Little River Creek Crayfish selected patches of coarse substrate, and all crayfish tended to use the lowest amount of bedrock available. In general, we showed that these endemic crayfish used erosional channel units of streams, even when the channel units were dry. Conservation efforts that protect erosional channel units and mitigate actions that cause channel downcutting to bedrock would benefit these crayfish, particularly during harsh, summer drying periods.

  12. Evaluation of habitat restoration needs at Yucca Mountain, Nevada Test Site, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mitchell, D.L.

    1984-04-01

    Adverse environmental impacts due to site characterization and repository development activities at Yucca Mountain, Nevada Test Site (NTS), Nye County, Nevada, must be minimized and mitigated according to provisions of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) of 1982 and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The natural Transition Desert ecosystem in the 27.5-sq-mi Yucca Mountain project area is now and will continue to be impacted by removal of native vegetation and topsoil and the destruction and/or displacement of faunal communities. Although it is not known at this time exactly how much land will be affected, it is estimated that about 300 to 400 acres will be disturbed by construction of facility sites, mining spoils piles, roadways, and drilling pads. Planned habitat restoration at Yucca Mountain will mitigate the effects of plant and animal habitat loss over time by increasing the rate of plant succession on disturbed sites. Restoration program elements should combine the appropriate use of native annual and perennial species, irrigation and/or water-harvesting techniques, and salvage and reuse of topsoil. Although general techniques are well-known, specific program details (i.e., which species to use, methods of site preparation with available equipment, methods of saving and applying topsoil, etc.) must be worked out empirically on a site-specific basis over the period of site characterization and any subsequent repository development. Large-scale demonstration areas set up during site characterization will benefit both present abandonments and, if the project is scaled up to include repository development, larger facilities areas including spoils piles. Site-specific demonstration studies will also provide information on the costs per acre associated with alternative restoration strategies

  13. Landscape-Scale Factors Affecting Feral Horse Habitat Use During Summer Within The Rocky Mountain Foothills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girard, Tisa L.; Bork, Edward W.; Neilsen, Scott E.; Alexander, Mike J.

    2013-02-01

    Public lands occupied by feral horses in North America are frequently managed for multiple uses with land use conflict occurring among feral horses, livestock, wildlife, and native grassland conservation. The factors affecting habitat use by horses is critical to understand where conflict may be greatest. We related horse presence and abundance to landscape attributes in a GIS to examine habitat preferences using 98 field plots sampled within a portion of the Rocky Mountain Forest Reserve of SW Alberta, Canada. Horse abundance was greatest in grassland and cut block habitats, and lowest in conifer and mixedwood forest. Resource selection probability functions and count models of faecal abundance indicated that horses preferred areas closer to water, with reduced topographic ruggedness, situated farther from forests, and located farther away from primary roads and trails frequented by recreationalists, but closer to small linear features (i.e. cut lines) that may be used as beneficial travel corridors. Horse presence and abundance were closely related to cattle presence during summer, suggesting that both herbivores utilise the same habitats. Estimates of forage biomass removal (44 %) by mid-July were near maximum acceptable levels. In contrast to horse-cattle associations, horses were negatively associated with wild ungulate abundance, although the mechanism behind this remains unclear and warrants further investigation. Our results indicate that feral horses in SW Alberta exhibit complex habitat selection patterns during spring and summer, including overlap in use with livestock. This finding highlights the need to assess and manage herbivore populations consistent with rangeland carrying capacity and the maintenance of range health.

  14. Variation in the diet of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in mountain habitats: Effects of altitude and season

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hartová-Nentvichová, M.; Šálek, M.; Červený, Jaroslav; Koubek, Petr

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 75, č. 4 (2010), s. 334-340 ISSN 1616-5047 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA524/06/0687 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : red fox * food * mountain habitats Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.264, year: 2010

  15. Red-tailed Hawk movements and use of habitat in the Luquillo Mountains of Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilella, Francisco; Nimitz, Wyatt F.

    2012-01-01

    The Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) is a top predator of upland ecosystems in the Greater Antilles. Little information exists on the ecology of the insular forms of this widely distributed species. We studied movements and resource use of the Red-tailed Hawk from 2000 to 2002 in the montane forests of northeastern Puerto Rico. We captured 32 and used 21 radio-marked Red-tailed Hawks to delineate home range, core area shifts, and macrohabitat use in the Luquillo Mountains. Red-tailed Hawks in the Luquillo Mountains frequently perched near the top of canopy emergent trees and were characterized by wide-ranging capabilities and extensive spatial overlap. Home range size averaged 5,022.6 6 832.1 ha (305–11,288 ha) and core areas averaged 564.8 6 90.7 ha (150–1,230 ha). This species had large mean weekly movements (3,286.2 6 348.5 m) and a preference for roadside habitats. Our findings suggest fragmentation of contiguous forest outside protected areas in Puerto Rico may benefit the Red-tailed Hawk

  16. High Performance Home Building Guide for Habitat for Humanity Affiliates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lindsey Marburger

    2010-10-01

    This guide covers basic principles of high performance Habitat construction, steps to achieving high performance Habitat construction, resources to help improve building practices, materials, etc., and affiliate profiles and recommendations.

  17. Investigating genetic diversity and habitat dynamics in Plantago brutia (Plantaginaceae), implications for the management of narrow endemics in Mediterranean mountain pastures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Vita, A; Bernardo, L; Gargano, D; Palermo, A M; Peruzzi, L; Musacchio, A

    2009-11-01

    Many factors have contributed to the richness of narrow endemics in the Mediterranean, including long-lasting human impact on pristine landscapes. The abandonment of traditional land-use practices is causing forest recovery throughout the Mediterranean mountains, by increasing reduction and fragmentation of open habitats. We investigated the population genetic structure and habitat dynamics of Plantago brutia Ten., a narrow endemic in mountain pastures of S Italy. Some plants were cultivated in the botanical garden to explore the species' breeding system. Genetic diversity was evaluated based on inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) polymorphisms in 150 individuals from most of known stands. Recent dynamics in the species habitat were checked over a 14-year period. Flower phenology, stigma receptivity and experimental pollinations revealed protogyny and self-incompatibility. With the exception of very small and isolated populations, high genetic diversity was found at the species and population level. amova revealed weak differentiation among populations, and the Mantel test suggested absence of isolation-by-distance. Multivariate analysis of population and genetic data distinguished the populations based on genetic richness, size and isolation. Landscape analyses confirmed recent reduction and isolation of potentially suitable habitats. Low selfing, recent isolation and probable seed exchange may have preserved P. brutia populations from higher loss of genetic diversity. Nonetheless, data related to very small populations suggest that this species may suffer further fragmentation and isolation. To preserve most of the species' genetic richness, future management efforts should consider the large and isolated populations recognised in our analyses.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  19. The Rocky Mountain population of the western Canada goose: its distribution, habitats, and management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krohn, William B.; Bizeau, Elwood G.

    1980-01-01

    The western Canada goose (Branta canadensis moffitti) was divided into a Rocky Mountain population (RMP) and a Pacific population (PP) on the basis of band recovery patterns examined in this study and recovery data from other investigators. Habitat information obtained from nine cooperating wildlife agencies within the RMP's range provided a base line for evaluating future changes in nesting, molting, and wintering areas. The habitat inventory indicated that none of the seasonal habitats were currently limiting the size of the RMP. The RMP's range is divided into 15 reference areas and these are briefly described. Past studies of Canada geese in the Intermountain Region are reviewed. Topics covered in the discussion of breeding biology are nesting chronology, spring population composition, breeding age, clutch size, nesting success. artificial nesting structures, and gosling survival. Much of the mortality of Canada geese occurs before the birds are fledged. Man-made nesting structures reduce losses during incubation. but research is needed on the relations between brooding sites and gosling survival. Some western Canada geese, mainly prebreeders and unsuccessful nesters, make molt migrations to and from molting areas during and after the brood-rearing season. More than half of these molt-migrants are yearlings too young to nest; there are indications that even some successful nesters leave nesting areas to molt before the fledging of their offspring. Geese 2 years old or older may serve as guides to traditional molting areas for the first-time migrants (i.e., yearlings). Lack of disturbance appears to influence selection of specific molting areas within the nesting range of moffitti, whereas movements of molters out of the Intermountain Region may be related to the evolution of this subspecies. Apparently. molters of both the PP and RMP that leave the Region go to the Northwest Territories of Canada. Although the taxonomic status of moffitti as related to the

  20. Analysis of Genetic Diversity and Structure Pattern of Indigofera Pseudotinctoria in Karst Habitats of the Wushan Mountains Using AFLP Markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Yan; Zhang, Chenglin; Wu, Wendan; He, Wei; Zhang, Li; Ma, Xiao

    2017-10-16

    Indigofera pseudotinctoria Mats is an agronomically and economically important perennial legume shrub with a high forage yield, protein content and strong adaptability, which is subject to natural habitat fragmentation and serious human disturbance. Until now, our knowledge of the genetic relationships and intraspecific genetic diversity for its wild collections is still poor, especially at small spatial scales. Here amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) technology was employed for analysis of genetic diversity, differentiation, and structure of 364 genotypes of I. pseudotinctoria from 15 natural locations in Wushan Montain, a highly structured mountain with typical karst landforms in Southwest China. We also tested whether eco-climate factors has affected genetic structure by correlating genetic diversity with habitat features. A total of 515 distinctly scoreable bands were generated, and 324 of them were polymorphic. The polymorphic information content (PIC) ranged from 0.694 to 0.890 with an average of 0.789 per primer pair. On species level, Nei's gene diversity ( H j ), the Bayesian genetic diversity index ( H B ) and the Shannon information index ( I ) were 0.2465, 0.2363 and 0.3772, respectively. The high differentiation among all sampling sites was detected ( F ST = 0.2217, G ST = 0.1746, G' ST = 0.2060, θ B = 0.1844), and instead, gene flow among accessions ( N m = 1.1819) was restricted. The population genetic structure resolved by the UPGMA tree, principal coordinate analysis, and Bayesian-based cluster analyses irrefutably grouped all accessions into two distinct clusters, i.e., lowland and highland groups. The population genetic structure resolved by the UPGMA tree, principal coordinate analysis, and Bayesian-based cluster analyses irrefutably grouped all accessions into two distinct clusters, i.e., lowland and highland groups. This structure pattern may indicate joint effects by the neutral evolution and natural selection. Restricted N m was

  1. Lead Levels in the Bones of Small Rodents from Alpine and Subalpine Habitats in the Tian-Shan Mountains, Kyrgyzstan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuzana Ballová

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available High mountain areas are an appropriate indicator of anthropogenic lead (Pb, which can reach remote mountain ranges through long distance atmospheric transport. We compared the content of Pb in ecologically equivalent rodent species from Tian-Shan with European mountain ranges including the Tatra, Vitosha and Rila mountains. We used bone tissues from terminal tail vertebrae of small rodents for detection of Pb levels through electro-thermal atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS. The tailbones of Tian-Shan rodents had significantly lower Pb levels than snow voles from the Tatra Mountains, but there was no significant difference in comparison with the Vitosha and Rila mountains. We can conclude that Tian-Shan shows lower pollution by Pb than the Tatras, which may be a result of prolonged industrialization of north-western Europe and strongly prevailing west winds in this region.

  2. Seasonal habitat use and movements of woodland caribou in the Omineca Mountains, north central British Columbia, 1991-1993

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mari D. Wood

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available From 1991 to 1993, 30 woodland caribou were captured and fitted with radio-collars west of the Williston Reservoir in north central B.C. Monthly radio-telemetry location flights revealed that caribou in the Northern Area, characterized by a complex of mountain ranges, moved greater distances to calving areas than did those in the South, where only one major mountain range exists. In the year of record heavy snowfall for the area, all collared caribou wintered on windswept alpine slopes, while during the below average snowfall year, many caribou remained in forested habitats. In winter, caribou were found to forage on terrestrial lichens in both lowland lodgepole pine flats and on windswept alpine slopes, and on arboreal lichens in upper elevation Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir forests. There are at least 600-700 caribou in the Omineca Mountains.

  3. High bacterial diversity in epilithic biofilms of oligotrophic mountain lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartrons, Mireia; Catalan, Jordi; Casamayor, Emilio O

    2012-11-01

    Benthic microbial biofilms attached to rocks (epilithic) are major sites of carbon cycling and can dominate ecosystem primary production in oligotrophic lakes. We studied the bacterial community composition of littoral epilithic biofilms in five connected oligotrophic high mountain lakes located at different altitudes by genetic fingerprinting and clone libraries of the 16S rRNA gene. Different intra-lake samples were analyzed, and consistent changes in community structure (chlorophyll a and organic matter contents, and bacterial community composition) were observed along the altitudinal gradient, particularly related with the location of the lake above or below the treeline. Epilithic biofilm genetic fingerprints were both more diverse among lakes than within lakes and significantly different between montane (below the tree line) and alpine lakes (above the tree line). The genetic richness in the epilithic biofilm was much higher than in the plankton of the same lacustrine area studied in previous works, with significantly idiosyncratic phylogenetic composition (specifically distinct from lake plankton or mountain soils). Data suggest the coexistence of aerobic, anaerobic, phototrophic, and chemotrophic microorganisms in the biofilm, Bacteroidetes and Cyanobacteria being the most important bacterial taxa, followed by Alpha-, Beta-, Gamma-, and Deltaproteobacteria, Chlorobi, Planctomycetes, and Verrucomicrobia. The degree of novelty was especially high for epilithic Bacteroidetes, and up to 50 % of the sequences formed monophyletic clusters distantly related to any previously reported sequence. More than 35 % of the total sequences matched at <95 % identity to any previously reported 16S rRNA gene, indicating that alpine epilithic biofilms are unexplored habitats that contain a substantial degree of novelty within a short geographical distance. Further research is needed to determine whether these communities are involved in more biogeochemical pathways than

  4. Predicting Effects of Climate Change on Habitat Suitability of Red Spruce (Picea rubens Sarg. in the Southern Appalachian Mountains of the USA: Understanding Complex Systems Mechanisms through Modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyung Ah Koo

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Alpine, subalpine and boreal tree species, of low genetic diversity and adapted to low optimal temperatures, are vulnerable to the warming effects of global climate change. The accurate prediction of these species’ distributions in response to climate change is critical for effective planning and management. The goal of this research is to predict climate change effects on the distribution of red spruce (Picea rubens Sarg. in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP, eastern USA. Climate change is, however, conflated with other environmental factors, making its assessment a complex systems problem in which indirect effects are significant in causality. Predictions were made by linking a tree growth simulation model, red spruce growth model (ARIM.SIM, to a GIS spatial model, red spruce habitat model (ARIM.HAB. ARIM.SIM quantifies direct and indirect interactions between red spruce and its growth factors, revealing the latter to be dominant. ARIM.HAB spatially distributes the ARIM.SIM simulations under the assumption that greater growth reflects higher probabilities of presence. ARIM.HAB predicts the future habitat suitability of red spruce based on growth predictions of ARIM.SIM under climate change and three air pollution scenarios: 10% increase, no change and 10% decrease. Results show that suitable habitats shrink most when air pollution increases. Higher temperatures cause losses of most low-elevation habitats. Increased precipitation and air pollution produce acid rain, which causes loss of both low- and high-elevation habitats. The general prediction is that climate change will cause contraction of red spruce habitats at both lower and higher elevations in GSMNP, and the effects will be exacerbated by increased air pollution. These predictions provide valuable information for understanding potential impacts of global climate change on the spatiotemporal distribution of red spruce habitats in GSMNP.

  5. Microcomputer software for calculating an elk habitat effectiveness index on Blue Mountain winter ranges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark Hitchcock; Alan. Ager

    1992-01-01

    National Forests in the Pacific Northwest Region have incorporated elk habitat standards into Forest plans to ensure that elk habitat objectives are met on multiple use land allocations. Many Forests have employed versions of the habitat effectiveness index (HEI) as a standard method to evaluate habitat. Field application of the HEI model unfortunately is a formidable...

  6. Developing landscape habitat models for rare amphibians with small geographic ranges: a case study of Siskiyou Mountains salamanders in the western USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nobuya Suzuki; Deanna H. Olson; Edward C. Reilly

    2007-01-01

    To advance the development of conservation planning for rare species with small geographic ranges, we determined habitat associations of Siskiyou Mountains salamanders (Plethodon stormi) and developed habitat suitability models at fine (10 ha), medium (40 ha), and broad (202 ha) spatial scales using available geographic information systems data and...

  7. Potential impacts of climate change on flow regime and fish habitat in mountain rivers of the south-western Balkans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papadaki, Christina; Soulis, Konstantinos; Muñoz-Mas, Rafael; Martinez-Capel, Francisco; Zogaris, Stamatis; Ntoanidis, Lazaros; Dimitriou, Elias

    2016-01-01

    The climate change in the Mediterranean area is expected to have significant impacts on the aquatic ecosystems and particular in the mountain rivers and streams that often host important species such as the Salmo farioides, Karaman 1938. These impacts will most possibly affect the habitat availability for various aquatic species resulting to an essential alteration of the water requirements, either for dams or other water abstractions, in order to maintain the essential levels of ecological flow for the rivers. The main scope of this study was to assess potential climate change impacts on the hydrological patterns and typical biota for a south-western Balkan mountain river, the Acheloos. The altered flow regimes under different emission scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) were estimated using a hydrological model and based on regional climate simulations over the study area. The Indicators of Hydrologic Alteration (IHA) methodology was then used to assess the potential streamflow alterations in the studied river due to predicted climate change conditions. A fish habitat simulation method integrating univariate habitat suitability curves and hydraulic modeling techniques were used to assess the impacts on the relationships between the aquatic biota and hydrological status utilizing a sentinel species, the West Balkan trout. The most prominent effects of the climate change scenarios depict severe flow reductions that are likely to occur especially during the summer flows, changing the duration and depressing the magnitude of the natural low flow conditions. Weighted Usable Area-flow curves indicated the limitation of suitable habitat for the native trout. Finally, this preliminary application highlighted the potential of science-based hydrological and habitat simulation approaches that are relevant to both biological quality elements (fish) and current EU Water policy to serve as efficient tools for the estimation of possible climate

  8. Microbial eukaryote plankton communities of high-mountain lakes from three continents exhibit strong biogeographic patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filker, Sabine; Sommaruga, Ruben; Vila, Irma; Stoeck, Thorsten

    2016-05-01

    Microbial eukaryotes hold a key role in aquatic ecosystem functioning. Yet, their diversity in freshwater lakes, particularly in high-mountain lakes, is relatively unknown compared with the marine environment. Low nutrient availability, low water temperature and high ultraviolet radiation make most high-mountain lakes extremely challenging habitats for life and require specific molecular and physiological adaptations. We therefore expected that these ecosystems support a plankton diversity that differs notably from other freshwater lakes. In addition, we hypothesized that the communities under study exhibit geographic structuring. Our rationale was that geographic dispersal of small-sized eukaryotes in high-mountain lakes over continental distances seems difficult. We analysed hypervariable V4 fragments of the SSU rRNA gene to compare the genetic microbial eukaryote diversity in high-mountain lakes located in the European Alps, the Chilean Altiplano and the Ethiopian Bale Mountains. Microbial eukaryotes were not globally distributed corroborating patterns found for bacteria, multicellular animals and plants. Instead, the plankton community composition emerged as a highly specific fingerprint of a geographic region even on higher taxonomic levels. The intraregional heterogeneity of the investigated lakes was mirrored in shifts in microbial eukaryote community structure, which, however, was much less pronounced compared with interregional beta-diversity. Statistical analyses revealed that on a regional scale, environmental factors are strong predictors for plankton community structures in high-mountain lakes. While on long-distance scales (>10 000 km), isolation by distance is the most plausible scenario, on intermediate scales (up to 6000 km), both contemporary environmental factors and historical contingencies interact to shift plankton community structures. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Wind constraints on the thermoregulation of high mountain lizards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortega, Zaida; Mencía, Abraham; Pérez-Mellado, Valentín

    2017-03-01

    Thermal biology of lizards affects their overall physiological performance. Thus, it is crucial to study how abiotic constraints influence thermoregulation. We studied the effect of wind speed on thermoregulation in an endangered mountain lizard ( Iberolacerta aurelioi). We compared two populations of lizards: one living in a sheltered rocky area and the other living in a mountain ridge, exposed to strong winds. The preferred temperature range of I. aurelioi, which reflects thermal physiology, was similar in both areas, and it was typical of a cold specialist. Although the thermal physiology of lizards and the structure of the habitat were similar, the higher wind speed in the exposed population was correlated with a significant decrease in the effectiveness thermoregulation, dropping from 0.83 to 0.74. Our results suggest that wind reduces body temperatures in two ways: via direct convective cooling of the animal and via convective cooling of the substrate, which causes conductive cooling of the animal. The detrimental effect of wind on thermoregulatory effectiveness is surprising, since lizards are expected to thermoregulate more effectively in more challenging habitats. However, wind speed would affect the costs and benefits of thermoregulation in more complex ways than just the cooling of animals and their habitats. For example, it may reduce the daily activity, increase desiccation, or complicate the hunting of prey. Finally, our results imply that wind should also be considered when developing conservation strategies for threatened ectotherms.

  10. Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regina M. Rochefort; Laurie L. Kurth; Tara W. Carolin; Robert R. Mierendorf; Kimberly Frappier; David L. Steenson

    2006-01-01

    This chapter concentrates on subalpine parklands and alpine meadows of southern British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and western Montana. These areas lie on the flanks of several mountain ranges including the Olympics, the Cascades of Oregon and Washington, and the Coast Mountains in British Columbia.

  11. Historical dominance of low-severity fire in dry and wet mixed-conifer forest habitats of the endangered terrestrial Jemez Mountains salamander (Plethodon neomexicanus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margolis, Ellis; Malevich, Steven B.

    2016-01-01

    Anthropogenic alteration of ecosystem processes confounds forest management and conservation of rare, declining species. Restoration of forest structure and fire hazard reduction are central goals of forest management policy in the western United States, but restoration priorities and treatments have become increasingly contentious. Numerous studies have documented changes in fire regimes, forest stand structure and species composition following a century of fire exclusion in dry, frequent-fire forests of the western U.S. (e.g., ponderosa pine and dry mixed-conifer). In contrast, wet mixed-conifer forests are thought to have historically burned infrequently with mixed- or high-severity fire—resulting in reduced impacts from fire exclusion and low restoration need—but data are limited. In this study we quantified the current forest habitat of the federally endangered, terrestrial Jemez Mountains salamander (Plethodon neomexicanus) and compared it to dendroecological reconstructions of historical habitat (e.g., stand structure and composition), and fire regime parameters along a gradient from upper ponderosa pine to wet mixed-conifer forests. We found that current fire-free intervals in Jemez Mountains salamander habitat (116–165 years) are significantly longer than historical intervals, even in wet mixed-conifer forests. Historical mean fire intervals ranged from 10 to 42 years along the forest gradient. Low-severity fires were historically dominant across all forest types (92 of 102 fires). Although some mixed- or highseverity fire historically occurred at 67% of the plots over the last four centuries, complete mortality within 1.0 ha plots was rare, and asynchronous within and among sites. Climate was an important driver of temporal variability in fire severity, such that mixed- and high-severity fires were associated with more extreme drought than low-severity fires. Tree density in dry conifer forests historically ranged from open (90 trees/ha) to

  12. Monitoring of vegetation response to elk population and habitat management in Rocky Mountain National Park, 2008–14

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeigenfuss, Linda C.; Johnson, Therese L.

    2015-12-17

    Since 2008, Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado has been implementing an elk and vegetation management plan with the goal of managing elk populations and their habitats to improve the condition of key vegetation communities on elk winter range. Management actions that have been taken thus far include small reductions in the elk herd through culling of animals and temporary fencing of large areas of willow and aspen habitat to protect them from elk browsing. As part of the park’s elk and vegetation management plan (EVMP), a monitoring program was established to assess effectiveness of management actions in achieving vegetation goals. We collected data to monitor offtake (consumption) of upland herbaceous plants and willow annually from 2008 to 2014 and to assess aspen stand structure and regeneration and willow cover and height in 2013, 5 years after plan implementation. Loss of many willow and a few aspen monitoring sites to a fire in late 2012 complicated data collection and interpretation of results but will provide opportunities to observe habitat recovery following fire and in the presence and absence of elk herbivory, which will offer important insights into the use of prescribed fire as an additional management tool in these habitats.

  13. Changes in composition, ecology and structure of high-mountain vegetation: a re-visitation study over 42 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evangelista, Alberto; Frate, Ludovico; Carranza, Maria Laura; Attorre, Fabio; Pelino, Giovanni; Stanisci, Angela

    2016-01-27

    High-mountain ecosystems are increasingly threatened by climate change, causing biodiversity loss, habitat degradation and landscape modifications. However, very few detailed studies have focussed on plant biodiversity in the high mountains of the Mediterranean. In this study, we investigated the long-term changes that have occurred in the composition, structure and ecology of high-mountain vegetation in the central Apennines (Majella) over the last 42 years. We performed a re-visitation study, using historical and newly collected vegetation data to explore which ecological and structural features have been the most successful in coping with climatic changes. Vegetation changes were analysed by comparing geo-referenced phytosociological relevés collected in high-mountain habitats (dolines, gentle slopes and ridges) on the Majella massif in 1972 and in 2014. Composition analysis was performed by detrended correspondence analysis, followed by an analysis of similarities for statistical significance assessment and by similarity percentage procedure (SIMPER) for identifying which species indicate temporal changes. Changes in ecological and structural indicators were analysed by a permutational multivariate analysis of variance, followed by a post hoc comparison. Over the last 42 years, clear floristic changes and significant ecological and structural variations occurred. We observed a significant increase in the thermophilic and mesonitrophilic plant species and an increment in the frequencies of hemicryptophytes. This re-visitation study in the Apennines agrees with observations in other alpine ecosystems, providing new insights for a better understanding of the effects of global change on Mediterranean high-mountain biodiversity. The observed changes in floristic composition, the thermophilization process and the shift towards a more nutrient-demanding vegetation are likely attributable to the combined effect of higher temperatures and the increase in soil nutrients

  14. Wildlife Habitats in Managed Forests the Blue Mountains of Oregon and Washington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jack Ward [Technical Editor] Thomas

    1979-01-01

    The Nation's forests are one of the last remaining natural habitats forterrestrial wildlife. Much of this vast forest resource has changed dramatically in the last 200 years and can no longer be considered wild. It is now managed for multiple use benefits, including timber production. Timber harvesting and roadbuilding now alter wildlife habitat more than any...

  15. ACUTE PHASE PROTEIN INCREASE IN HIGH ALTITUDE MOUNTAINEERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tolga Saka

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Introduction: Many middle-aged Turks go hiking in mountains to breathe some fresh air or to maintain fitness. Objective: This study investigated the effects of regular high altitude mountain climbing on the metabolic and hematological responses of mountaineers. Methods: Hematological and biochemical parameters were studied, as well as some hormonal values of 21 mountaineers and 16 healthy age-matched sedentary volunteers. Results: The neutrophil to lymphocyte ratio (NLR was significantly lower (p<0.04 in mountaineers compared with the sedentary group. Total protein (p<0.001 and albumin (p<0.001 were lower, while the levels of ferritin (p<0.04, creatine (p<0.03 and creatine phosphokinase (p<0.01 were higher in mountaineers. Other hematological and biochemical parameters, i.e., erythrocytes, leukocytes, hemoglobin and hematocrit, did not change significantly. Conclusion: Our results show that regular exposure to high altitude increased the serum levels of some acute phase proteins with anti-inflammatory properties.

  16. Linking seasonal home range size with habitat selection and movement in a mountain ungulate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viana, Duarte S; Granados, José Enrique; Fandos, Paulino; Pérez, Jesús M; Cano-Manuel, Francisco Javier; Burón, Daniel; Fandos, Guillermo; Aguado, María Ángeles Párraga; Figuerola, Jordi; Soriguer, Ramón C

    2018-01-01

    Space use by animals is determined by the interplay between movement and the environment, and is thus mediated by habitat selection, biotic interactions and intrinsic factors of moving individuals. These processes ultimately determine home range size, but their relative contributions and dynamic nature remain less explored. We investigated the role of habitat selection, movement unrelated to habitat selection and intrinsic factors related to sex in driving space use and home range size in Iberian ibex, Capra pyrenaica . We used GPS collars to track ibex across the year in two different geographical areas of Sierra Nevada, Spain, and measured habitat variables related to forage and roost availability. By using integrated step selection analysis (iSSA), we show that habitat selection was important to explain space use by ibex. As a consequence, movement was constrained by habitat selection, as observed displacement rate was shorter than expected under null selection. Selection-independent movement, selection strength and resource availability were important drivers of seasonal home range size. Both displacement rate and directional persistence had a positive relationship with home range size while accounting for habitat selection, suggesting that individual characteristics and state may also affect home range size. Ibex living at higher altitudes, where resource availability shows stronger altitudinal gradients across the year, had larger home ranges. Home range size was larger in spring and autumn, when ibex ascend and descend back, and smaller in summer and winter, when resources are more stable. Therefore, home range size decreased with resource availability. Finally, males had larger home ranges than females, which might be explained by differences in body size and reproductive behaviour. Movement, selection strength, resource availability and intrinsic factors related to sex determined home range size of Iberian ibex. Our results highlight the need to integrate

  17. S-40: Acute Phase Protein Increse in High Altitude Mountaineers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tolga Saka

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available “Erciyes Tigers” are an elite group of high altitude climbers. They have been climbing ErciyesMountain (3500 m, in Kayseri, Turkey once a week at least for ten years. When they climb Erciyes in winter, they also take a snow bath. This study investigated the effects of regular high altitude climbing on the metabolic and hematological responses of mountaineers. Venous blood samples were taken to investigate hematological, biochemical parameters and some hormone values from 21 mountaineers and 16 healthy age-matched sedentary volunteers at resting condition. The neutrophil/lymphocyte (N/L ratio was calculated. The N/L was associated with an increased risk of long-term mortality and it could provide a good measure of exercise stress and subsequent recovery. Most of the hematological and biochemical parameters i.e., erythrocyte, leukocyte, hemoglobin and hematocrit values did not change significantly. The neutrophil to lymphocyte (N/L ratio was significantly (p<0.04 decreased in the mountaineer compared with the sedentary group. Total protein (p<0.000 and albumin (0.001 were lower, while ferritin (p<0.04, creatine (p<0.03 and creatine phosphokinase levels (p<0.01 were higher in mountaineers. Our results show that regular high altitude climbing increased serum levels of some acute-phase proteins and these increments were not transient.

  18. Movements and habitat use of rocky mountain elk and mule deer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alan A. Ager; Haiganoush K. Preisler; Bruce K. Johnson; John G. Kie

    2004-01-01

    Understanding how ungulates use large landscapes to meet their daily needs for food, security and other resources is critical to wildlife management and conservation practices (Johnson et al. 2002). For ungulates like Rocky Mountain elk (Gems elaphui) and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), landscapes are a mosaic of different...

  19. Investigating a high ozone episode in a rural mountain site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Monteiro, A.; Strunk, A.; Carvalho, A.; Tchepel, O.; Miranda, A.I.; Borrego, C.; Saavedra, S.; Rodríguez, A.; Souto, J.; Casares, J.; Friese, E.; Elbern, H.

    2012-01-01

    A very high ozone episode with observed hourly values above 350 μg m −3 occurred in July 2005 at the Lamas d’Olo air quality monitoring station, located in a mountainous area in the north of Portugal. Aiming to identify the origin and formation of this ozone-rich episode, a statistical analysis and a modelling approach were applied. A cross-spectrum analysis in the frequency domain and a synoptic analysis of the meteorological and air quality time series were performed. In order to go further in this analysis, a numerical modelling approach was applied. The results indicate that the transport of ozone and its precursors is the main responsible for the high ozone concentrations. Together with the local mountain breeze and subsidence conditions, the sea-breeze circulation transporting pollutants from the coastal urban and industrialized areas that reach the site during late afternoon turn out to be the driving forces for the ozone peaks. - Highlights: ► A very high ozone episode occurred in a rural mountain site of Portugal in 2004. ► Data cross-spectrum analysis in the frequency domain was performed. ► A numerical modelling approach was also applied. ► The sea-breeze circulation transported pollutants from the urban and industrialized coast. ► The mountain breeze and subsidence conditions were also driving forces for ozone peaks. - The sea-breeze transporting pollutants from the coast, the mountain breeze and subsidence conditions, were the driving forces for the ozone episode occurred in a rural mountain site.

  20. Modelling spatial concordance between Rocky Mountain spotted fever disease incidence and habitat probability of its vector Dermacentor variabilis (American dog tick).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, Samuel F; Sarkar, Sahotra; Aviña, Aldo; Schuermann, Jim A; Williamson, Phillip

    2012-11-01

    The spatial distribution of Dermacentor variabilis, the most commonly identified vector of the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii which causes Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) in humans, and the spatial distribution of RMSF, have not been previously studied in the south central United States of America, particularly in Texas. From an epidemiological perspective, one would tend to hypothesise that there would be a high degree of spatial concordance between the habitat suitability for the tick and the incidence of the disease. Both maximum-entropy modelling of the tick's habitat suitability and spatially adaptive filters modelling of the human incidence of RMSF disease provide reliable portrayals of the spatial distributions of these phenomenons. Even though rates of human cases of RMSF in Texas and rates of Dermacentor ticks infected with Rickettsia bacteria are both relatively low in Texas, the best data currently available allows a preliminary indication that the assumption of high levels of spatial concordance would not be correct in Texas (Kappa coefficient of agreement = 0.17). It will take substantially more data to provide conclusive findings, and to understand the results reported here, but this study provides an approach to begin understanding the discrepancy.

  1. Modelling spatial concordance between Rocky Mountain spotted fever disease incidence and habitat probability of its vector Dermacentor variabilis (American dog tick

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel F. Atkinson

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The spatial distribution of Dermacentor variabilis, the most commonly identified vector of the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii which causes Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF in humans, and the spatial distribution of RMSF, have not been previously studied in the south central United States of America, particularly in Texas. From an epidemiological perspective, one would tend to hypothesise that there would be a high degree of spatial concordance between the habitat suitability for the tick and the incidence of the disease. Both maximum-entropy modelling of the tick’s habitat suitability and spatially adaptive filters modelling of the human incidence of RMSF disease provide reliable portrayals of the spatial distributions of these phenomenons. Even though rates of human cases of RMSF in Texas and rates of Dermacentor ticks infected with Rickettsia bacteria are both relatively low in Texas, the best data currently available allows a preliminary indication that the assumption of high levels of spatial concordance would not be correct in Texas (Kappa coefficient of agreement = 0.17. It will take substantially more data to provide conclusive findings, and to understand the results reported here, but this study provides an approach to begin understanding the discrepancy.

  2. Role of oaks in fisher habitat quality in the Sierra Nevada mountains at multiple spatial scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craig M. Thompson; Kathryn Purcell; Rebecca Green; Richard. Sweitzer

    2015-01-01

    Fishers (Pekania pennanti) occur in ponderosa pine, mixed conifer, and mixed hardwood conifer habitats in the southern Sierra Nevada at elevations from approximately 1400 to 2300 m. They are a candidate species for listing under both the Federal and California Endangered Species Acts. Since 2007, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (...

  3. Pathophysiology of acute mountain sickness and high altitude pulmonary oedema

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sutton, J R; Lassen, N

    1979-01-01

    We review the evidence that acute mountain sickness (AMS) and high altitude pulmonary oedema (HAPO) occur together more often than is realized. We hypothesize that AMS and HAPO have a common pathophysiological basis: both are due to increased pressure and flow in the microcirculation, causing...

  4. The High-mountain Cryosphere: Environmental Changes and Human Risks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Shahgedanova

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: The High-mountain Cryosphere: Environmental Changes and Human Risks Edited by Christian Huggel, Mark Carey, John J. Clague, and Andreas Kääb. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2015. xii + 363 pp. Hardcover: US$ 140.00, ISBN 978-1-107-06584-0. E-book: US$ 112.00, ISBN 978-1-316-35515-2.

  5. THE USE-POTENTIAL OF QUERCUS ALIENA VAR. ACUTESERRATA FOR URBAN PLANTATIONS – BASED ON HABITAT STUDIES IN THE QINLING MOUNTAINS, CHINA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik SJÖMAN

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Traditionally, a limited number of species and genera dominate the tree stock in streets and urban sites, and recent surveys in European and North American cities show that few species/genera continue to dominate. Yet, over the past decades, a growing proportion of those commonly used species have shown increasing difficulties to cope with urban sites. This has led to considerable and persistent arguments for using a more varied range of trees, including stress-tolerant species, at urban paved sites. This study examined forest systems occurring between 1300-2200 m asl. in the Qinling Mountains, China, in order to evaluate the oriental white oaks (Quercus aliena var. acuteserrata Maximowicz ex Wenzig growth and development in warm and dry forest habitats and hence evaluate its potential for urban paved sites in northern parts of central Europe and in adjoining milder parts of northern Europe. In total, 102 oriental white oak where found in the studied plots and here showed very promising development in habitats experiencing drier conditions than those in park environments in Copenhagen, and is therefore interesting for urban paved sites were the demands of a greater catalogue of tolerant trees are highly needed.

  6. Habitat suitability models of mountain ungulates: identifying potential areas for conservation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Paudel, Prakash K.; Hais, M.; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 54, apr (2015), s. 37 ISSN 1021-5506 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415; GA MŠk LC06073; GA ČR GB14-36098G Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : capricornis thar * habitat model * Midhills * Muntiacus muntjak * Naemorhedus goral * Nepal Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.885, year: 2015

  7. Upward Altitudinal Shifts in Habitat Suitability of Mountain Vipers since the Last Glacial Maximum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masoud Yousefi

    Full Text Available We determined the effects of past and future climate changes on the distribution of the Montivipera raddei species complex (MRC that contains rare and endangered viper species limited to Iran, Turkey and Armenia. We also investigated the current distribution of MRC to locate unidentified isolated populations as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of the current network of protected areas for their conservation. Present distribution of MRC was modeled based on ecological variables and model performance was evaluated by field visits. Some individuals at the newly identified populations showed uncommon morphological characteristics. The distribution map of MRC derived through modeling was then compared with the distribution of protected areas in the region. We estimated the effectiveness of the current protected area network to be 10%, which would be sufficient for conserving this group of species, provided adequate management policies and practices are employed. We further modeled the distribution of MRC in the past (21,000 years ago and under two scenarios in the future (to 2070. These models indicated that climatic changes probably have been responsible for an upward shift in suitable habitats of MRC since the Last Glacial Maximum, leading to isolation of allopatric populations. Distribution will probably become much more restricted in the future as a result of the current rate of global warming. We conclude that climate change most likely played a major role in determining the distribution pattern of MRC, restricting allopatric populations to mountaintops due to habitat alterations. This long-term isolation has facilitated unique local adaptations among MRC populations, which requires further investigation. The suitable habitat patches identified through modeling constitute optimized solutions for inclusion in the network of protected areas in the region.

  8. What can we learn from fluvial incision in high mountains?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuchs, Margret; Gloaguen, Richard; Krbetschek, Matthias

    2013-04-01

    High and actively deforming mountain ranges attract the attention of geoscientists as they provide natural laboratories of fast evolving process-response systems. Tectonic compressional settings, often linked to perpendicular extension, control the topographic growth and hence, erosion, transport pathways and sedimentation. High altitude differences within short horizontal distances promote material re-organisation and high rates of surface processes. Furthermore, high mountains constitute orographic barriers that affect atmospheric circulations as well as host different climate regimes similar to those of widely separated latitudinal belts. Both cause a high sensitivity of surface processes to changes in climatic conditions. However, feedbacks between climatic and tectonic forcing are complex. Additionally, the dominance of one or the other varies in space and also over time, inheriting various traces of the paleo-morphodynamic conditions to the subsequent process regimes. To unravel the forces driving the evolution of relief in active mountains, numerous studies employ the drainage network of the corresponding mountains as a proxy of landscape evolution. Especially the rates of river incision provide a powerful tool to characterize the surface response and infer causes behind it. Several parameters of river incision are available to describe the fluvial incision at individual sites (e.g. terrace incision rates), along the river course (e.g. longitudinal river profiles, Hack index) and in its perpendicular dimension (e.g. valley cross sections, valley shape ratios). But they require careful interpretation. They are sensitive to both, climatic and tectonic forcing. Therefore, the synopsis of such indices for fluvial incision is essential to evaluate the role of climatic versus tectonic forcing. Here, we use the Panj river system, the major river draining the Pamir mountains of Central Asia, as an example. The Panj experiences high altitude changes of more than 4000

  9. The scramble for Africa: pan-temperate elements on the African high mountains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehrke, Berit; Linder, H Peter

    2009-07-22

    The composition of isolated floras has long been thought to be the result of relatively rare long-distance dispersal events. However, it has recently become apparent that the recruitment of lineages may be relatively easy and that many dispersal events from distant but suitable habitats have occurred, even at an infraspecific level. The evolution of the flora on the high mountains of Africa has been attributed to the recruitment of taxa not only from the African lowland flora or the Cape Floristic Region, but also to a large extent from other areas with temperate climates. We used the species rich, pan-temperate genera Carex, Ranunculus and Alchemilla to explore patterns in the number of recruitment events and region of origin. Molecular phylogenetic analyses, parametric bootstrapping and ancestral area optimizations under parsimony indicate that there has been a high number of colonization events of Carex and Ranunculus into Africa, but only two introductions of Alchemilla. Most of the colonization events have been derived from Holarctic ancestors. Backward dispersal out of Africa seems to be extremely rare. Thus, repeated colonization from the Northern Hemisphere in combination with in situ radiation has played an important role in the composition of the flora of African high mountains.

  10. Reproductive success and habitat characteristics of Golden-winged Warblers in high-elevation pasturelands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Petra; Aldinger, Kyle R.

    2016-01-01

    The Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera) is one of the most rapidly declining vertebrate species in the Appalachian Mountains. It is the subject of extensive range-wide research and conservation action. However, little is known about this species' breeding ecology in high-elevation pasturelands, a breeding habitat with conservation potential considering the U.S. Natural Resource Conservation Service's Working Lands for Wildlife program targeting private lands in the Appalachian Mountains. We located 100 nests of Golden-winged Warblers in pastures in and around the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia during 2008–2012. Daily nest survival rate (mean ± SE  =  0.962 ± 0.006), clutch size (4.5 ± 0.1), and number of young fledged per nest attempt (2.0 ± 0.2) and successful nest (4.0 ± 0.1) fell within the range of values reported in other parts of the species' range and were not significantly affected by year or the presence/absence of cattle grazing. Classification tree analysis revealed that nests were in denser vegetation (≥52%) and closer to forest edges (Golden-winged Warblers. High-elevation pasturelands may provide a refuge for remaining populations of Golden-winged Warblers in this region.

  11. Changing climate and endangered high mountain ecosystems in Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz, Daniel; Moreno, Hernán Alonso; Gutiérrez, María Elena; Zapata, Paula Andrea

    2008-07-15

    High mountain ecosystems are among the most sensitive environments to changes in climatic conditions occurring on global, regional and local scales. The article describes the changing conditions observed over recent years in the high mountain basin of the Claro River, on the west flank of the Colombian Andean Central mountain range. Local ground truth data gathered at 4150 m, regional data available at nearby weather stations, and satellite info were used to analyze changes in the mean and the variance, and significant trends in climatic time series. Records included minimum, mean and maximum temperatures, relative humidity, rainfall, sunshine, and cloud characteristics. In high levels, minimum and maximum temperatures during the coldest days increased at a rate of about 0.6 degrees C/decade, whereas maximum temperatures during the warmest days increased at a rate of about 1.3 degrees C/decade. Rates of increase in maximum, mean and minimum diurnal temperature range reached 0.6, 0.7, and 0.5 degrees C/decade. Maximum, mean and minimum relative humidity records showed reductions of about 1.8, 3.9 and 6.6%/decade. The total number of sunny days per month increased in almost 2.1 days. The headwaters exhibited no changes in rainfall totals, but evidenced an increased occurrence of unusually heavy rainfall events. Reductions in the amount of all cloud types over the area reached 1.9%/decade. In low levels changes in mean monthly temperatures and monthly rainfall totals exceeded + 0.2 degrees C and - 4% per decade, respectively. These striking changes might have contributed to the retreat of glacier icecaps and to the disappearance of high altitude water bodies, as well as to the occurrence and rapid spread of natural and man-induced forest fires. Significant reductions in water supply, important disruptions of the integrity of high mountain ecosystems, and dramatic losses of biodiversity are now a steady menu of the severe climatic conditions experienced by these

  12. Seasonal narwhal habitat associations in the high Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laidre, K.L.; Heide-Jørgensen, M.P.; Logdson, M.L.

    2004-01-01

    Movements and behavior of top marine predators are often closely linked with productive oceanic fronts or regional prey aggregations. Consequently, it is of interest to quantify habitat needs and preferences, which can facilitate predictions of conditions favoring persistence and success....... Multivariate habitat models of movements and dive behavior of narwhals (Monodon monoceros, Linnaeus) in the eastern Canadian high Arctic and West Greenland were developed using data collected from satellite telemetry studies on three separate sub-populations. Twenty-six narwhals were captured between 1993...... and 2000 and fitted with satellite-linked time-depth recorders. Geographic positions of whales at 24-h time steps were linked to dive behavior variables compressed on a daily scale, including numbers of dives to different target depths or durations, time near the surface, daily dive rate, and travel speed...

  13. Hydrological Dynamics In High Mountain Catchment Areas of Central Norway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Löffler, Jörg; Rößler, Ole

    Large-scaled landscape structure is regarded as a mosaic of ecotopes where process dynamics of water and energy fluxes are analysed due to its effects on ecosystem functioning. The investigations have been carried out in the continental most Vågå/Oppland high mountains in central Norway since 1994 (LÖFFLER &WUNDRAM 1999, 2000, 2001). Additionally, comparable investigations started in 2000 dealing with the oceanic high mountain landscapes on same latitudes (LÖFFLER et al. 2001). The theoretical and methodological framework of the project is given by the Landscape-Ecological Complex Analysis (MOSIMANN 1984, 1985) and its variations due to technical and principle methodical challenges in this high mountain landscape (KÖHLER et al. 1994, LÖFFLER 1998). The aim of the project is to characterize high mountain ecosystem structure, functioning and dynamics within small catchment areas, that are chosen in two different altitudinal belts each in the eastern continental and the western oceanic region of central Norway. In the frame of this research project hydrological and meteorological measurements on ground water, percolation and soil moisture dynamics as well as on evaporation, air humidity and air-, surface- and soil-temperatures have been conducted. On the basis of large-scaled landscape-ecological mappings (LÖFFLER 1997) one basic meteorological station and several major data logger run stations have been installed in representative sites of each two catchment areas in the low and mid alpine belts of the investigation regions ( JUNGet al. 1997, LÖFFLER &WUNDRAM 1997). Moreover, spatial differentiations of groundwater level, soil moisture and temperature profiles have been investigated by means of hand held measurements at different times of the day, during different climatic situations and different seasons. Daily and annual air-, surface- and soil-temperature dynamics are demonstrated by means of thermoisopleth-diagrams for different types of ecotopes of the

  14. Degradation of High Mountain Ecosystems in Northern Europe

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    J(o)rg L(o)ffler

    2004-01-01

    Data material of a long-term highmountain ecosystem research project was used to interpret the grazing impact of reindeers. In central Norway investigations were conducted to both, areas where reindeer grazing is excluded, and areas where intensive pasturing is present for a long period of time.The comparative analysis of grazing impact was based on similar environmental conditions. The results were transposed to northern Norway where dramatic overgrazing had been exceeding the carrying capacity.Using landscape ecological mappings, especially of vege ation and soils, the impact of reindeer grazing in different areas became obvious. Non-grazedlichen-dominated ecosystems of the snow-free locations functioned sensitively near the limit of organism survival. These localities were most influenced by grazing as they offer the winter forage to the reindeers. So, intensive grazing in central Norway led to landscape degradation by destruction of the vegetation and superinduced by soil erosion.Those features were comparable to the situation in northern Norway, where a broad-scale destruction of the environment combined with a depression of the altitudinal belts had occurred due to overgrazing.Functioning principles of intact high mountain systems were explained and used to interpret the environmental background for the understanding of degradation phenomena. Finally, the use of a new model calculating the carrying capacity of high mountain landscape was discussed.

  15. Mountain peatlands range from CO2 sinks at high elevations to sources at low elevations: Implications for a changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    David J. Millar; David J. Cooper; Kathleen A. Dwire; Robert M. Hubbard; Joseph. von Fischer

    2016-01-01

    Mountain fens found in western North America have sequestered atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) for millennia, provide important habitat for wildlife, and serve as refugia for regionally-rare plant species typically found in boreal regions. It is unclear how Rocky Mountain fens are responding to a changing climate. It is possible that fens found at lower elevations may...

  16. Mapping mountain meadow with high resolution and polarimetric SAR data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tian, Bangsen; Li, Zhen; Xu, Juan; Fu, Sitao; Liu, Jiuli

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a method to map the large grassland in the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau with the high resolution polarimetric SAR (PolSAR) imagery. When PolSAR imagery is used for land cover classification, the brightness of a SAR image is affected by topography due to varying projection between ground and image coordinates. The objective of this paper is twofold: (1) we first extend the theory of SAR terrain correction to the polarimetric case, to utilize the entire available polarimetric signature, where correction is performed explicitly based on a matrix format like covariance matrix. (2) Next, the orthoectified PolSAR is applied to classify mountain meadow and investigate the potential of PolSAR in mapping grassland. In this paper, the gamma naught radiometric correction estimates the local illuminated area at each grid point in the radar geometry. Then, each element of the coherency matrix is divided by the local area to produce a polarimetric product. Secondly, the impact of radiometric correction upon classification accuracy is investigated. A supervised classification is performed on the orthorectified Radarsat-2 PolSAR to map the spatial distribution of meadow and evaluate monitoring capabilities of mountain meadow

  17. Bust economics: foragers choose high quality habitats in lean times

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonny S. Bleicher

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In environments where food resources are spatially variable and temporarily impoverished, consumers that encounter habitat patches with different food density should focus their foraging initially where food density is highest before they move to patches where food density is lower. Increasing missed opportunity costs should drive individuals progressively to patches with lower food density as resources in the initially high food density patches deplete. To test these expectations, we assessed the foraging decisions of two species of dasyurid marsupials (dunnarts: Sminthopsis hirtipes and S. youngsoni during a deep drought, or bust period, in the Simpson Desert of central Australia. Dunnarts were allowed access to three patches containing different food densities using an interview chamber experiment. Both species exhibited clear preference for the high density over the lower food density patches as measured in total harvested resources. Similarly, when measuring the proportion of resources harvested within the patches, we observed a marginal preference for patches with initially high densities. Models analyzing behavioral choices at the population level found no differences in behavior between the two species, but models analyzing choices at the individual level uncovered some variation. We conclude that dunnarts can distinguish between habitat patches with different densities of food and preferentially exploit the most valuable. As our observations were made during bust conditions, experiments should be repeated during boom times to assess the foraging economics of dunnarts when environmental resources are high.

  18. Dataset of Phenology of Mediterranean high-mountain meadows flora (Sierra Nevada, Spain)

    OpenAIRE

    Antonio Jesús Pérez-Luque; Cristina Patricia Sánchez-Rojas; Regino Zamora; Ramón Pérez-Pérez; Francisco Javier Bonet

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Sierra Nevada mountain range (southern Spain) hosts a high number of endemic plant species, being one of the most important biodiversity hotspots in the Mediterranean basin. The high-mountain meadow ecosystems (borreguiles) harbour a large number of endemic and threatened plant species. In this data paper, we describe a dataset of the flora inhabiting this threatened ecosystem in this Mediterranean mountain. The dataset includes occurrence data for flora collected in those ecosystems...

  19. How do two giant panda populations adapt to their habitats in the Qinling and Qionglai Mountains, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liu, Xiaoji; Wang, Tiejun; Wang, Ting; Skidmore, A.K.; Songer, M.

    2015-01-01

    The spatial separation of the Qinling Mountains from the western mountains has caused morphological and genetic distinctions of giant pandas. Could this separation also cause the pandas’ behavior change? In this research, we focused on the pandas’ movement pattern and selected two wild panda groups

  20. Quantifying the changes in the High Mountain Asia snow hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Y.; Kumar, S.; Mocko, D. M.; Rosenberg, R. I.; Kwon, Y.; Forman, B. A.; Zaitchik, B. F.

    2017-12-01

    The melting of snow and glaciers in the High Mountain Asia (HMA) provides the water needs of approximately 1.3 billion people in the region. Increasing temperatures have large effects on the hydrologic cycle, influencing snowmelt, snowpack, stream flow, and water runoff, which can impact all aspects of water security, such as water allocation, conservation, efficiency and land-use planning. Most mountain regions, however, remain ungauged without in-situ measurement of precipitation or snowpack due to the complex terrain, and thus it is difficult to understand the regional water balance and assess how it might change in the future. In this study, we focus on characterizing the spatiotemporal patterns of snowpack states and fluxes over the last 30+ years (1980 - present) and assessing the relationship between snowmelt and runoff. The Noah land surface model with multi-parameterization options, version 3.6 (Noah-MP.3.6) in the NASA Land Information System (LIS) is used to establish a high resolution (1 km) modeling environment over the HMA. Combining information from satellite observations and the Modern-Era Retrospective analysis for Research and Applications, Version 2 (MERRA-2) is used to provide an effective way to develop spatially and temporally continuous estimates of changes. To improve the spatial representativeness of the precipitation field for modeling at 1km resolution, the input field is downscaled using a stochastic downscaling method with the monthly WorldClim data. The other meteorological inputs (e.g., air temperature, humidity, pressure, wind, and downward shortwave and longwave) are corrected for elevation through lapse-rate and slope-aspect methods. Evaluation of the model estimates is presented using satellite-derived data (e.g., MODIS and GRACE) and reanalysis products (e.g., CMC and ERA-interim).

  1. Summer freezing resistance: a critical filter for plant community assemblies in Mediterranean high mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Sánchez Pescador

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Assessing freezing community response and whether freezing resistance is related to other functional traits is essential for understanding alpine community assemblages, particularly in Mediterranean environments where plants are exposed to freezing temperatures and summer droughts. Thus, we characterized the leaf freezing resistance of 42 plant species in 38 plots at Sierra de Guadarrama (Spain by measuring their ice nucleation temperature, freezing point (FP, and low-temperature damage (LT50, as well as determining their freezing resistance mechanisms (i.e., tolerance or avoidance. The community response to freezing was estimated for each plot as community weighted means (CWMs and functional diversity, and we assessed their relative importance with altitude. We established the relationships between freezing resistance, growth forms, and four key plant functional traits (i.e., plant height, specific leaf area, leaf dry matter content, and seed mass. There was a wide range of freezing resistance responses and more than in other alpine habitats. At the community level, the CWMs of FP and LT50 responded negatively to altitude, whereas the functional diversity of both traits increased with altitude. The proportion of freezing-tolerant species also increased with altitude. The ranges of FP and LT50 varied among growth forms, and only the leaf dry matter content correlated negatively with freezing-resistance traits. Summer freezing events represent important abiotic filters for assemblies of Mediterranean high mountain communities, as suggested by the CWMs. However, a concomitant summer drought constraint may also explain the high freezing resistance of species that thrive in these areas and the lower functional diversity of freezing resistance traits at lower altitudes. Leaves with high dry matter contents may maintain turgor at lower water potential and enhance drought tolerance in parallel to freezing resistance. This adaptation to drought seems to

  2. variation of small mammal populations across different habitat types ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mwangi

    DIFFERENT HABITAT TYPES IN THE SERENGETI ECOSYSTEM. Flora J. Magige*. Department ... There was moderately high similarity in the number of species caught in the two sites ..... Mountains Tanzania (wet season). MSc. Dissertation ...

  3. Reproductive success and habitat characteristics of Golden-winged Warblers in high-elevation pasturelands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Petra; Aldinger, Kyle R.

    2016-01-01

    The Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera) is one of the most rapidly declining vertebrate species in the Appalachian Mountains. It is the subject of extensive range-wide research and conservation action. However, little is known about this species' breeding ecology in high-elevation pasturelands, a breeding habitat with conservation potential considering the U.S. Natural Resource Conservation Service's Working Lands for Wildlife program targeting private lands in the Appalachian Mountains. We located 100 nests of Golden-winged Warblers in pastures in and around the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia during 2008–2012. Daily nest survival rate (mean ± SE  =  0.962 ± 0.006), clutch size (4.5 ± 0.1), and number of young fledged per nest attempt (2.0 ± 0.2) and successful nest (4.0 ± 0.1) fell within the range of values reported in other parts of the species' range and were not significantly affected by year or the presence/absence of cattle grazing. Classification tree analysis revealed that nests were in denser vegetation (≥52%) and closer to forest edges (the male's territory. Successful nests had significantly more woody cover (≥9%) within 1 m than failed nests. Our results suggest that cattle grazing at 1.2–2.4 ha of forage/animal unit with periodic mowing can create and maintain these characteristics without interfering with the nesting of Golden-winged Warblers. High-elevation pasturelands may provide a refuge for remaining populations of Golden-winged Warblers in this region.

  4. Multiscale radar mapping of surface melt over mountain glaciers in High Mountain Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steiner, N.; McDonald, K. C.

    2017-12-01

    Glacier melt dominates input for many hydrologic systems in the Himalayan Hindukush region that feed rivers that are critical for downstream ecosystems and hydropower generation in this highly populated area. Deviation in seasonal surface melt timing and duration with a changing climate has the potential to affect up to a billion people on the Indian Subcontinent. Satellite-borne microwave remote sensing has unique capabilities that allow monitoring of numerous landscape processes associated with snowmelt and freeze/thaw state, without many of the limitations in optical-infrared sensors such as solar illumination or atmospheric conditions. The onset of regional freeze/thaw and surface melting transitions determine important surface hydrologic variables like river discharge. Theses regional events are abrupt therefore difficult to observe with low-frequency observation sensors. Recently launched synthetic aperture radar (SAR) onboard the Sentinel-1 A and B satellites from the European Space Agency (ESA) provide wide-swath and high spatial resolution (50-100 m) C-Band SAR observations with observations frequencies not previously available, on the order of 8 to 16 days. The Sentinel SARs provide unique opportunity to study freeze/thaw and mountain glacier melt dynamics at process level scales, spatial and temporal. The melt process of individual glaciers, being fully resolved by imaging radar, will inform on the radiometric scattering physics associated with surface hydrology during the transition from melted to thawed state and during refreeze. Backscatter observations, along with structural information about the surface will be compared with complimentary coarse spatial resolution C-Band radar scatterometers, Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT Met Op A+B), to understand the sub-pixel contribution of surface melting and freeze/thaw signals. This information will inform on longer-scale records of backscatter from ASCAT, 2006-2017. We present a comparison of polarimetric C

  5. Impact of climate change on the hydrology of High Mountain Asia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lutz, A.

    2016-01-01

    In Asia, water resources largely depend on water generated in the mountainous upstream parts of several large river basins and hundreds of millions of people depend on their waters downstream. The large-scale impacts of climate change for the water resources in High Mountain Asia are poorly

  6. Conservation of biodiversity in mountain ecosystems -- At a glance

    OpenAIRE

    MacKinnon, K.

    2002-01-01

    Metadata only record Mountains are especially important for biodiversity conservation since many harbor unique assemblages of plants and animals, including high levels of endemic species. Mountain biodiversity and natural habitats bestow multiple ecosystem, soil conservation, and watershed benefits. Mountains are often centers of endemism, where species are prevalent in or peculiar to a particular region, and Pleistocene refuges, which are hypothesized to have high levels of diversity wher...

  7. Mountains on Io: High-resolution Galileo observations, initial interpretations, and formation models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turtle, E.P.; Jaeger, W.L.; Keszthelyi, L.P.; McEwen, A.S.; Milazzo, M.; Moore, J.; Phillips, C.B.; Radebaugh, J.; Simonelli, D.; Chuang, F.; Schuster, P.; Alexander, D.D.A.; Capraro, K.; Chang, S.-H.; Chen, A.C.; Clark, J.; Conner, D.L.; Culver, A.; Handley, T.H.; Jensen, D.N.; Knight, D.D.; LaVoie, S.K.; McAuley, M.; Mego, V.; Montoya, O.; Mortensen, H.B.; Noland, S.J.; Patel, R.R.; Pauro, T.M.; Stanley, C.L.; Steinwand, D.J.; Thaller, T.F.; Woncik, P.J.; Yagi, G.M.; Yoshimizu, J.R.; Alvarez Del Castillo, E.M.; Beyer, R.; Branston, D.; Fishburn, M.B.; Muller, Birgit; Ragan, R.; Samarasinha, N.; Anger, C.D.; Cunningham, C.; Little, B.; Arriola, S.; Carr, M.H.; Asphaug, E.; Morrison, D.; Rages, K.; Banfield, D.; Bell, M.; Burns, J.A.; Carcich, B.; Clark, B.; Currier, N.; Dauber, I.; Gierasch, P.J.; Helfenstein, P.; Mann, M.; Othman, O.; Rossier, L.; Solomon, N.; Sullivan, R.; Thomas, P.C.; Veverka, J.; Becker, T.; Edwards, K.; Gaddis, L.; Kirk, R.; Lee, E.; Rosanova, T.; Sucharski, R.M.; Beebe, R.F.; Simon, A.; Belton, M.J.S.; Bender, K.; Fagents, S.; Figueredo, P.; Greeley, R.; Homan, K.; Kadel, S.; Kerr, J.; Klemaszewski, J.; Lo, E.; Schwarz, W.; Williams, D.; Williams, K.; Bierhaus, B.; Brooks, S.; Chapman, C.R.; Merline, B.; Keller, J.; Tamblyn, P.; Bouchez, A.; Dyundian, U.; Ingersoll, A.P.; Showman, A.; Spitale, J.; Stewart, S.; Vasavada, A.; Breneman, H.H.; Cunningham, W.F.; Johnson, T.V.; Jones, T.J.; Kaufman, J.M.; Klaasen, K.P.; Levanas, G.; Magee, K.P.; Meredith, M.K.; Orton, G.S.; Senske, D.A.; West, A.; Winther, D.; Collins, G.; Fripp, W.J.; Head, J. W.; Pappalardo, R.; Pratt, S.; Prockter, L.; Spaun, N.; Colvin, T.; Davies, M.; DeJong, E.M.; Hall, J.; Suzuki, S.; Gorjian, Z.; Denk, T.; Giese, B.; Koehler, U.; Neukum, G.; Oberst, J.; Roatsch, T.; Tost, W.; Wagner, R.; Dieter, N.; Durda, D.; Geissler, P.; Greenberg, R.J.; Hoppa, G.; Plassman, J.; Tufts, R.; Fanale, F.P.; Granahan, J.C.

    2001-01-01

    During three close flybys in late 1999 and early 2000 the Galileo spacecraft ac-quired new observations of the mountains that tower above Io's surface. These images have revealed surprising variety in the mountains' morphologies. They range from jagged peaks several kilometers high to lower, rounded structures. Some are very smooth, others are covered by numerous parallel ridges. Many mountains have margins that are collapsing outward in large landslides or series of slump blocks, but a few have steep, scalloped scarps. From these observations we can gain insight into the structure and material properties of Io's crust as well as into the erosional processes acting on Io. We have also investigated formation mechanisms proposed for these structures using finite-element analysis. Mountain formation might be initiated by global compression due to the high rate of global subsidence associated with Io's high resurfacing rate; however, our models demonstrate that this hypothesis lacks a mechanism for isolating the mountains. The large fraction (???40%) of mountains that are associated with paterae suggests that in some cases these features are tectonically related. Therefore we have also simulated the stresses induced in Io's crust by a combination of a thermal upwelling in the mantle with global lithospheric compression and have shown that this can focus compressional stresses. If this mechanism is responsible for some of Io's mountains, it could also explain the common association of mountains with paterae. Copyright 2001 by the American Geophysical Union.

  8. Peculiarities of high-altitude landscapes formation in the Small Caucasus mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trifonova, Tatiana

    2014-05-01

    Various mountain systems differ in character of landscapes and soil. Basic problem of present research: conditions and parameters determining the development of various landscapes and soils in mountain areas. Our research object is the area of Armenia where Small Caucasus, a part of Armenian upland is located. The specific character of the area is defined by the whole variety of all mountain structures like fold, block folding mountain ridges, volcanic upland, individual volcanoes, and intermountain depressions. As for the climate, the area belongs to dry subtropics. We have studied the peculiarities of high-altitude landscapes formation and mountain river basins development. We have used remote sensing data and statistic database of climatic parameters in this research. Field observations and landscape pictures analysis of space images allow distinguishing three types of mountain geosystems clearly: volcanic massifs, fold mountainous structures and closed high mountain basins - area of the lakes. The distribution of precipitation according to altitude shows some peculiarities. It has been found that due to this factor the investigated mountain area may be divided into three regions: storage (fold) mountainous area; Ararat volcanic area (southern macro exposure); closed high mountainous basin-area of the lake Sevan. The mountainous nature-climatic vertical landscapes appear to be horizontally oriented and they are more or less equilibrium (stable) geosystems, where the stable functional relationship between the landscape components is formed. Within their limits, definite bioclimatic structure of soil is developed. Along the slopes of fold mountains specific landscape shapes like litho-drainage basins are formed. They are intensively developing like relatively independent vertical geosystems. Mechanism of basin formation is versatile resulting in formation of the polychronous soil mantle structure. Landscapes and soils within the basin are of a different age, since

  9. Adaptation and survival of plants in high stress habitats via fungal endophyte conferred stress tolerance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Rusty J.; Woodward, Claire; Redman, Regina S.

    2010-01-01

    From the Arctic to the Antarctic, plants thrive in diverse habitats that impose different levels of adaptive pressures depending on the type and degree of biotic and abiotic stresses inherent to each habitat (Stevens, 1989). At any particular location, the abundance and distribution of individual plant species vary tremendously and is theorized to be based on the ability to tolerate a wide range of edaphic conditions and habitat-specific stresses (Pianka, 1966). The ability of individual plant species to thrive in diverse habitats is commonly referred to as phenotypic plasticity and is thought to involve adaptations based on changes in the plant genome (Givnish, 2002; Pan et al., 2006; Robe and Griffiths, 2000; Schurr et al., 2006). Habitats that impose high levels of abiotic stress are typically colonized with fewer plant species compared to habitats imposing low levels of stress. Moreover, high stress habitats have decreased levels of plant abundance compared to low stress habitats even though these habitats may occur in close proximity to one another (Perelman et al., 2007). This is particularly interesting because all plants are known to perceive, transmit signals, and respond to abiotic stresses such as drought, heat, and salinity (Bartels and Sunkar, 2005; Bohnert et al., 1995). Although there has been extensive research performed to determine the genetic, molecular, and physiological bases of how plants respond to and tolerate stress, the nature of plant adaptation to high stress habitats remains unresolved (Leone et al., 2003; Maggio et al., 2003; Tuberosa et al., 2003). However, recent evidence indicates that a ubiquitous aspect of plant biology (fungal symbiosis) is involved in the adaptation and survival of at least some plants in high stress habitats (Rodriguez et al., 2008).

  10. Population demography of alpine butterflies: Boloria pales and Boloria napaea (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) and their specific adaptations to high mountain environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehl, Stefan; Ebertshäuser, Marlene; Gros, Patrick; Schmitt, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    High mountain ecosystems are extreme habitats, and adaptation strategies to this ecosystem are still poorly understood in most groups. To unravel such strategies, we performed a MRR study in the Hohe Tauern National Park (Salzburg, Austria) with two nymphalid butterfly species, Boloria pales and B. napaea. We analysed their population structure over one flight period by studying the development of population size and wing wear. B. pales had more individuals and a higher survival probability than B. napaea; the sensitivity to extreme weather conditions or other external influences was higher in B. napaea. We only observed proterandry in B. pales. Imagines of both species survived under snow for at least some days. Additionally, we observed a kind of risk-spreading, in that individuals of both species, and especially B. pales, have regularly emerged throughout the flight period. This emergence pattern divided the population's age structure into three phases: an initial phase with decreasing wing quality (emergence > mortality), followed by an equilibrium phase with mostly constant average wing condition (emergence = mortality) and a final ageing phase with strongly deteriorating wing condition (mortality » emergence). Consequently, neither species would likely become extinct because of particularly unsuitable weather conditions during a single flight period. The observed differences between the two species suggest a better regional adaptation of B. pales, which is restricted to high mountain systems of Europe. In contrast, the arctic-alpine B. napaea might be best adapted to conditions in the Arctic and not the more southern high mountain systems. However, this needs to be examined during future research in the Arctic.

  11. Geographic Layers as Landscape Drivers for the Marco Polo Argali Habitat in the Southeastern Pamir Mountains of Tajikistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Ariel L. Salas

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available We described in this report the essential geographic layers used as landscape drivers for the Marco Polo Argali habitat in the eastern Tajik Pamirs. Using remote sensing techniques and geographic information systems (GIS, individual layers were generated in order to acquire more information on argali patterns and habitat suitability and to make the dataset available online. We introduced an improved object-based image analysis in our mapping of the vegetation cover by utilizing spectral, topographic, and texture variables. We exhausted every Landsat image band and texture feature combination to select the best pairing of band-texture components. For vegetation class alone, the producer’s accuracy was 90.8% and the user’s accuracy was 91.6%.

  12. Diurnal behavior and habitat preferences of Erebia aethiops, an aberrant lowland species of a mountain butterfly clade

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Slámová, Irena; Klečka, Jan; Konvička, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 24, č. 3 (2011), s. 230-246 ISSN 0892-7553 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073; GA ČR GD206/08/H044; GA ČR GAP505/10/2248 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : butterfly activity * habitat preferences * diurnal behavior Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.963, year: 2011

  13. Morphological characteristics of overdeepenings in high-mountain glacier beds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haeberli, Wilfried; Cochachin, Alejo; Fischer, Urs; Giráldez, Claudia; Linsbauer, Andreas; Salazar, Cesar

    2014-05-01

    Overdeepenings, i.e. closed topographic depressions with adverse slopes in the flow direction, are characteristic for glacier beds and glacially sculpted landscapes. Besides their importance as geomorphological landforms, groundwater bodies and sedimentary archives, they are of increasing interest in relation to climate-induced lake formation in de-glaciating landscapes and to depth erosion under ice age conditions in connection with the long-term safety of radioactive waste repositories in some mid-latitude countries. Quantitative predictions of their shape, distribution and conditions of occurrence, however, remain difficult. One major problem thereby relates to the still unsatisfactory treatment in glacier erosion theory of sediment evacuation at glacier beds, especially by subglacial meltwater. An alternative way of searching for realistic/empirical quantitative estimates is, therefore, to analyse the geometry of well-documented overdeepenings. The present study attempts to do this by combining statistical analyses of (a) detailed bathymetries from recently exposed lakes in the Peruvian Andes, (b) numerous bed overdeepenigs below still existing glaciers of the Swiss Alps and the Himalaya-Karakoram region modelled with a robust shear stress approximation linking surface slope to ice thickness at high resolution, and (c, for comparison) reconstructed overdeepenings produced by ice age glaciers in the Swiss Plateau based on numerous drillings and geophysical soundings. The sample of (a) has the advantage that geometries are exactly measured and only subject to young/small sedimentation effects. Sample (b) allows for a comparison with a modern model calculation and with known glacier characteristics. Sample (c) may provide some insights into the question how safely results from high mountain topography can be transferred to sites with markedly different topographic, climatic and glaciological controls (cold-arid lowland). Where possible, mean and maximum values of

  14. Thermal analysis of Yucca Mountain commercial high-level waste packages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Altenhofen, M.K.; Eslinger, P.W.

    1992-10-01

    The thermal performance of commercial high-level waste packages was evaluated on a preliminary basis for the candidate Yucca Mountain repository site. The purpose of this study is to provide an estimate for waste package component temperatures as a function of isolation time in tuff. Several recommendations are made concerning the additional information and modeling needed to evaluate the thermal performance of the Yucca Mountain repository system

  15. CanWEA regional issues and wind energy project siting : mountainous areas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D' Entremont, M. [Jacques Whitford Ltd., Vancouver, BC (Canada)]|[Axys Environmental Consulting Ltd., Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    2008-07-01

    Planning and permitting considerations for wind energy project siting in mountainous areas were discussed. Mountainous regions have a specific set of environmental and socio-economic concerns. Potential disruptions to wildlife, noise, and visual impacts are a primary concern in the assessment of potential wind farm projects. Alpine habitats are unique and often contain fragile and endangered species. Reclamation techniques for mountainous habitats have not been extensively tested, and the sites are not as resilient as sites located in other ecosystems. In addition, alpine habitats are often migratory corridors and breeding grounds for threatened or endangered birds. In the winter months, alpine habitats are used by caribou, grizzly bears, and wolverine dens. Bats are also present at high elevations. It is often difficult to conduct baseline and monitoring studies in mountainous areas since alpine habitat is subject to rapid weather changes, and has a very short construction period. tabs., figs.

  16. Unique parallel radiations of high-mountainous species of the genus Sedum (Crassulaceae) on the continental island of Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Takuro; Yu, Chih-Chieh; Nakamura, Koh; Chung, Kuo-Fang; Yang, Qin-Er; Fu, Cheng-Xin; Qi, Zhe-Chen; Kokubugata, Goro

    2017-08-01

    We explored the temporal and spatial diversification of the plant genus Sedum L. (Crassulaceae) in Taiwan based on molecular analysis of nrITS and cpDNA sequences from East Asian Sedum members. Our phylogenetic and ancestral area reconstruction analysis showed that Taiwanese Sedum comprised two lineages that independently migrated from Japan and Eastern China. Furthermore, the genetic distances among species in these two clades were smaller than those of other East Asian Sedum clades, and the Taiwanese members of each clade occupy extremely varied habitats with similar niches in high-mountain regions. These data indicate that species diversification occurred in parallel in the two Taiwanese Sedum lineages, and that these parallel radiations could have occurred within the small continental island of Taiwan. Moreover, the estimated time of divergence for Taiwanese Sedum indicates that the two radiations might have been correlated to the formation of mountains in Taiwan during the early Pleistocene. We suggest that these parallel radiations may be attributable to the geographical dynamics of Taiwan and specific biological features of Sedum that allow them to adapt to new ecological niches. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Thermoregulation and microhabitat use in mountain butterflies of the genus Erebia: importance of fine-scale habitat heterogeneity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klečková, Irena; Konvička, Martin; Klečka, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 41, č. 1 (2014), s. 50-58 ISSN 0306-4565 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/10/2248 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP505/10/1630; GA JU(CZ) 106/2010/P; GA JU(CZ) 135/2010/P; GA JU(CZ) 145/2010/P Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : alpine habitats * behavioural thermoregulation * climate change Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.505, year: 2014

  18. Estimating density of a rare and cryptic high-mountain Galliform species, the Buff-throated Partridge Tetraophasis szechenyii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Xu

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Estimates of abundance or density are essential for wildlife management and conservation. There are few effective density estimates for the Buff-throated Partridge Tetraophasis szechenyii, a rare and elusive high-mountain Galliform species endemic to western China. In this study, we used the temporary emigration N-mixture model to estimate density of this species, with data acquired from playback point count surveys around a sacred area based on indigenous Tibetan culture of protection of wildlife, in Yajiang County, Sichuan, China, during April-June 2009. Within 84 125-m radius points, we recorded 53 partridge groups during three repeats. The best model indicated that detection probability was described by covariates of vegetation cover type, week of visit, time of day, and weather with weak effects, and a partridge group was present during a sampling period with a constant probability. The abundance component was accounted for by vegetation association. Abundance was substantially higher in rhododendron shrubs, fir-larch forests, mixed spruce-larch-birch forests, and especially oak thickets than in pine forests. The model predicted a density of 5.14 groups/km², which is similar to an estimate of 4.7 - 5.3 groups/km² quantified via an intensive spot-mapping effort. The post-hoc estimate of individual density was 14.44 individuals/km², based on the estimated mean group size of 2.81. We suggest that the method we employed is applicable to estimate densities of Buff-throated Partridges in large areas. Given importance of a mosaic habitat for this species, local logging should be regulated. Despite no effect of the conservation area (sacred on the abundance of Buff-throated Partridges, we suggest regulations linking the sacred mountain conservation area with the official conservation system because of strong local participation facilitated by sacred mountains in land conservation.

  19. Classification of High-Mountain Vegetation Communities within a Diverse Giant Mountains Ecosystem Using Airborne APEX Hyperspectral Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana Marcinkowska-Ochtyra

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Mapping plant communities is a difficult and time consuming endeavor. Methods relying on field surveys deliver high quality data but are usually limited to relatively small areas. In this paper we apply airborne hyperspectral data to vegetation mapping in remote and hard to reach areas. We classified 22 vegetation communities in the Giant Mountains on 3.12-m Airborne Prism Experiment (APEX hyperspectral images, registered in 288 spectral bands (10 September 2012. As the classification algorithm, Support Vector Machines (SVM was used. APEX data were corrected geometrically and atmospherically, and three dimensionality reduction methods were performed to select the best dataset. As reference we used a non-forest vegetation map containing vegetation communities of Polish Karkonosze National Park from 2002, orthophotomap and field surveys data from 2013 to 2014. We obtained the post-classification maps of 22 vegetation communities, lakes and areas without any vegetation. Iterative accuracy assessment repeated 100 times was used to obtain the most objective results for individual communities. The median value of overall accuracy (OA was 84%. Fourteen out of twenty-four classes were classified of more than 80% of producer accuracy (PA and sixteen out of twenty-four of user accuracy (UA. APEX data and SVM with the use of iterative accuracy assessment are useful for the mountain communities classification. This can support both Polish and Czech national parks management by giving the information about diversity of communities in the whole transboundary area, helping with identification especially in changing environment caused by humans.

  20. Distribution of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the food web of a high mountain lake, Pyrenees, Catalonia, Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vives, Ingrid; Grimalt, Joan O; Ventura, Marc; Catalan, Jordi

    2005-06-01

    We investigated the contents of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the food web organisms included in the diet of brown trout from a remote mountain lake. The preferential habitat and trophic level of the component species have been assessed from the signature of stable isotopes (delta13C and delta15N). Subsequently, the patterns of accumulation and transformation of these hydrocarbons in the food chain have been elucidated. Most of the food web organisms exhibit PAH distributions largely dominated by phenanthrene, which agrees with its predominance in atmospheric deposition, water, and suspended particles. Total PAH levels are higher in the organisms from the littoral habitat than from the deep sediments or the pelagic water column. However, organisms from deep sediments exhibit higher proportions of higher molecular weight PAH than those in other lake areas. Distinct organisms exhibit specific features in their relative PAH composition that point to different capacities for uptake and metabolic degradation. Brown trout show an elevated capacity for metabolic degradation because they have lower PAH concentrations than food and they are enriched strongly in lower molecular weight compounds. The PAH levels in trout highly depend on organisms living in the littoral areas. Fish exposure to PAH, therefore, may vary from lake to lake according to the relative contribution of littoral organisms to their diet.

  1. A challenge in the high mountains; Defi en haute montagne

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Scaramiglia, V.

    2003-07-01

    The mountain hut Topali above St. Niklaus, Switzerland is situated at 2,700 meters above sea-level in the southern Swiss Alps. Metal and wood have been the main construction materials of this energy efficient building comprising 48 beds on a surface of roughly 100 m{sup 2}. The building includes 12 m{sup 2} of photovoltaic panels as a power supply mainly for lighting and telephone. Space heating and cooking are provided by 8 m{sup 3} of fire wood yearly. Cooking is also possible with a gas stove fueled by liquefied gas. A cool room (0 to 5 {sup o}C) replaces the refrigerator. It is kept at this low temperature by means of a 4.5 m{sup 3} store filled with water from the nearby glacier.

  2. Climate Change Impacts on Ecosystem Services in High Mountain Areas: A Literature Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Palomo

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available High mountain areas are experiencing some of the earliest and greatest impacts of climate change. However, knowledge on how climate change impacts multiple ecosystem services that benefit different stakeholder groups remains scattered in the literature. This article presents a review of the literature on climate change impacts on ecosystem services benefiting local communities and tourists in high mountain areas. Results show a lack of studies focused on the global South, especially where there are tropical glaciers, which are likely to be the first to disappear. Climate change impacts can be classified as impacts on food and feed, water availability, natural hazards regulation, spirituality and cultural identity, aesthetics, and recreation. In turn, climate change impacts on infrastructure and accessibility also affect ecosystem services. Several of these impacts are a direct threat to the lives of mountain peoples, their livelihoods and their culture. Mountain tourism is experiencing abrupt changes too. The magnitude of impacts make it necessary to strengthen measures to adapt to climate change in high mountain areas.

  3. Remote sensing of glacier- and permafrost-related hazards in high mountains: an overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Kääb

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Process interactions and chain reactions, the present shift of cryospheric hazard zones due to atmospheric warming, and the potential far reach of glacier disasters make it necessary to apply modern remote sensing techniques for the assessment of glacier and permafrost hazards in high-mountains. Typically, related hazard source areas are situated in remote regions, often difficult to access for physical and/or political reasons. In this contribution we provide an overview of air- and spaceborne remote sensing methods suitable for glacier and permafrost hazard assessment and disaster management. A number of image classification and change detection techniques support high-mountain hazard studies. Digital terrain models (DTMs, derived from optical stereo data, synthetic aperture radar or laserscanning, represent one of the most important data sets for investigating high-mountain processes. Fusion of satellite stereo-derived DTMs with the DTM from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM is a promising way to combine the advantages of both technologies. Large changes in terrain volume such as from avalanche deposits can indeed be measured even by repeat satellite DTMs. Multitemporal data can be used to derive surface displacements on glaciers, permafrost and landslides. Combining DTMs, results from spectral image classification, and multitemporal data from change detection and displacement measurements significantly improves the detection of hazard potentials. Modelling of hazardous processes based on geographic information systems (GIS complements the remote sensing analyses towards an integrated assessment of glacier and permafrost hazards in mountains. Major present limitations in the application of remote sensing to glacier and permafrost hazards in mountains are, on the one hand, of technical nature (e.g. combination and fusion of different methods and data; improved understanding of microwave backscatter. On the other hand, better

  4. Environmental program overview for a high-level radioactive waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-12-01

    The United States plans to begin operating the first repository for the permanent disposal of high-level nuclear waste early in the next century. In February 1983, the US Department of Energy (DOE) identified Yucca Mountain, in Nevada, as one of nine potentially acceptable sites for a repository. To determine its suitability, the DOE evaluated the Yucca Mountain site, along with eight other potentially acceptable sites, in accordance with the DOE's General Guidelines for the Recommendation of Sites for the Nuclear Waste Repositories. The purpose of the Environmental Program Overview (EPO) for the Yucca Mountain site is to provide an overview of the overall, comprehensive approach being used to satisfy the environmental requirements applicable to sitting a repository at Yucca Mountain. The EPO states how the DOE will address the following environmental areas: aesthetics, air quality, cultural resources (archaeological and Native American components), noise, radiological studies, soils, terrestrial ecosystems, and water resources. This EPO describes the environmental program being developed for the sitting of a repository at Yucca Mountain. 1 fig., 3 tabs

  5. Wave exposure as a predictor of benthic habitat distribution on high energy temperate reefs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex eRattray

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The new found ability to measure physical attributes of the marine environment at high resolution across broad spatial scales has driven the rapid evolution of benthic habitat mapping as a field in its own right. Improvement of the resolution and ecological validity of seafloor habitat distribution models has, for the most part, paralleled developments in new generations of acoustic survey tools such as multibeam echosounders. While sonar methods have been well demonstrated to provide useful proxies of the relatively static geophysical patterns that reflect distribution of benthic species and assemblages, the spatially and temporally variable influence of hydrodynamic energy on habitat distribution have been less well studied. Here we investigate the role of wave exposure on patterns of distribution of near-shore benthic habitats. A high resolution spectral wave model was developed for a 624 km2 site along Cape Otway, a major coastal feature of western Victoria, Australia. Comparison of habitat classifications implemented using the Random Forests algorithm established that significantly more accurate estimations of habitat distribution were obtained by including a fine-scale numerical wave model, extended to the seabed using linear wave theory, than by using depth and seafloor morphology information alone. Variable importance measures and map interpretation indicated that the spatial variation in wave induced bottom orbital velocity was most influential in discriminating habitat the classes containing canopy forming kelp Ecklonia radiata, a foundation kelp species that affects biodiversity and ecological functioning on shallow reefs across temperate Australasia. We demonstrate that hydrodynamic models reflecting key environmental drivers on wave exposed coastlines are important in accurately defining distributions of benthic habitats.

  6. Yucca Mountain, Nevada - A Proposed Geologic Repository for High-Level Radioactive Waste (Volume 1) Introduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    R.A. Levich; J.S. Stuckless

    2006-01-01

    Yucca Mountain in Nevada represents the proposed solution to what has been a lengthy national effort to dispose of high-level radioactive waste, waste which must be isolated from the biosphere for tens of thousands of years. This chapter reviews the background of that national effort and includes some discussion of international work in order to provide a more complete framework for the problem of waste disposal. Other chapters provide the regional geologic setting, the geology of the Yucca Mountain site, the tectonics, and climate (past, present, and future). These last two chapters are integral to prediction of long-term waste isolation

  7. Yucca Mountain, Nevada - A Proposed Geologic Repository for High-Level Radioactive Waste (Volume 1) Introduction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    R.A. Levich; J.S. Stuckless

    2006-09-25

    Yucca Mountain in Nevada represents the proposed solution to what has been a lengthy national effort to dispose of high-level radioactive waste, waste which must be isolated from the biosphere for tens of thousands of years. This chapter reviews the background of that national effort and includes some discussion of international work in order to provide a more complete framework for the problem of waste disposal. Other chapters provide the regional geologic setting, the geology of the Yucca Mountain site, the tectonics, and climate (past, present, and future). These last two chapters are integral to prediction of long-term waste isolation.

  8. Department of Energy perspective on high-level waste standards for Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brocoum, S.J.; Gil, A.V.; Van Luik, A.E.; Lugo, M.A.

    1996-01-01

    This paper provides a regulatory perspective from the viewpoint of the potential licensee, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), on the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report on Yucca Mountain standards issued in August 1995, and on how the recommendations in that report should be considered in the development of high-level radioactive waste standards applicable to Yucca Mountain. The paper first provides an overview of the DOE perspective and then discusses several of the issues that are of most importance in the development of the regulatory framework for Yucca Mountain, including both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standard and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) implementing regulation. These issues include: the regulatory time frame, the risk/dose limit, the definition of the reference biosphere, human intrusion, and natural processes and events

  9. Spatiotemporal patterns of high-mountain lakes and related hazards in western Austria

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Emmer, Adam; Merkl, S.; Mergili, M.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 246, oct (2015), s. 602-616 ISSN 0169-555X Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : lake development * geoenvironmental change * GLOF * high-mountain lakes * susceptibility analysis Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography Impact factor: 2.813, year: 2015

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haoran Wang

    2016-01-01

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

  11. Butterflies of the high altitude Atacama Desert: habitat use and conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma eDespland

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The butterfly fauna of the high-altitude desert of Northern Chile, though depauperate, shows high endemism, is poorly known and is of considerable conservation concern. This study surveys butterflies along the Andean slope between 2400 and 500 m asl (prepuna, puna and Andean steppe habitats as well as in high and low altitude wetlands and in the neoriparian vegetation of agricultural sites. We also include historical sightings from museum records. We compare abundances between altitudes, between natural and impacted sites, as well as between two sampling years with different precipitation regimes. The results confirm high altitudinal turnover and show greatest similarity between wetland and slope faunas at similar altitudes. Results also underscore vulnerability to weather fluctuations, particularly in the more arid low-altitude sites, where abundances were much lower in the low precipitation sampling season and several species were not observed at all. Finally, we show that some species have shifted to the neoriparian vegetation of the agricultural landscape, whereas others were only observed in less impacted habitats dominated by native plants. These results suggest that acclimation to novel habitats depends on larval host plant use. The traditional agricultural environment can provide habitat for many, but not all, native butterfly species, but an estimation of the value of these habitats requires better understanding of butterfly life-history strategies and relationships with host plants.

  12. Wildlife habitat considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helen Y. Smith

    2000-01-01

    Fire, insects, disease, harvesting, and precommercial thinning all create mosaics on Northern Rocky Mountain landscapes. These mosaics are important for faunal habitat. Consequently, changes such as created openings or an increase in heavily stocked areas affect the water, cover, and food of forest habitats. The “no action” alternative in ecosystem management of low...

  13. Geology of the Yucca Mountain Region, Chapter in Stuckless, J.S., ED., Yucca Mountain, Nevada - A Proposed Geologic Repository for High-Level Radioactive Waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    J.S. Stuckless; D. O' Leary

    2006-09-25

    Yucca Mountain has been proposed as the site for the Nation's first geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste. This chapter provides the geologic framework for the Yucca Mountain region. The regional geologic units range in age from late Precambrian through Holocene, and these are described briefly. Yucca Mountain is composed dominantly of pyroclastic units that range in age from 11.4 to 15.2 Ma. The proposed repository would be constructed within the Topopah Spring Tuff, which is the lower of two major zoned and welded ash-flow tuffs within the Paintbrush Group. The two welded tuffs are separated by the partly to nonwelded Pah Canyon Tuff and Yucca Mountain Tuff, which together figure prominently in the hydrology of the unsaturated zone. The Quaternary deposits are primarily alluvial sediments with minor basaltic cinder cones and flows. Both have been studied extensively because of their importance in predicting the long-term performance of the proposed repository. Basaltic volcanism began about 10 Ma and continued as recently as about 80 ka with the eruption of cones and flows at Lathrop Wells, approximately 10 km south-southwest of Yucca Mountain. Geologic structure in the Yucca Mountain region is complex. During the latest Paleozoic and Mesozoic, strong compressional forces caused tight folding and thrust faulting. The present regional setting is one of extension, and normal faulting has been active from the Miocene through to the present. There are three major local tectonic domains: (1) Basin and Range, (2) Walker Lane, and (3) Inyo-Mono. Each domain has an effect on the stability of Yucca Mountain.

  14. Geology of the Yucca Mountain Region, Chapter in Stuckless, J.S., ED., Yucca Mountain, Nevada - A Proposed Geologic Repository for High-Level Radioactive Waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    J.S. Stuckless; D. O'Leary

    2006-01-01

    Yucca Mountain has been proposed as the site for the Nation's first geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste. This chapter provides the geologic framework for the Yucca Mountain region. The regional geologic units range in age from late Precambrian through Holocene, and these are described briefly. Yucca Mountain is composed dominantly of pyroclastic units that range in age from 11.4 to 15.2 Ma. The proposed repository would be constructed within the Topopah Spring Tuff, which is the lower of two major zoned and welded ash-flow tuffs within the Paintbrush Group. The two welded tuffs are separated by the partly to nonwelded Pah Canyon Tuff and Yucca Mountain Tuff, which together figure prominently in the hydrology of the unsaturated zone. The Quaternary deposits are primarily alluvial sediments with minor basaltic cinder cones and flows. Both have been studied extensively because of their importance in predicting the long-term performance of the proposed repository. Basaltic volcanism began about 10 Ma and continued as recently as about 80 ka with the eruption of cones and flows at Lathrop Wells, approximately 10 km south-southwest of Yucca Mountain. Geologic structure in the Yucca Mountain region is complex. During the latest Paleozoic and Mesozoic, strong compressional forces caused tight folding and thrust faulting. The present regional setting is one of extension, and normal faulting has been active from the Miocene through to the present. There are three major local tectonic domains: (1) Basin and Range, (2) Walker Lane, and (3) Inyo-Mono. Each domain has an effect on the stability of Yucca Mountain

  15. Spatiotemporal dynamics of spring and stream water chemistry in a high-mountain area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zelazny, Miroslaw; Astel, Aleksander; Wolanin, Anna; Malek, Stanislaw

    2011-01-01

    The present study deals with the application of the self-organizing map (SOM) technique in the exploration of spatiotemporal dynamics of spring and stream water samples collected in the Chocholowski Stream Basin located in the Tatra Mountains (Poland). The SOM-based classification helped to uncover relationships between physical and chemical parameters of water samples and factors determining the quality of water in the studied high-mountain area. In the upper part of the Chocholowski Stream Basin, located on the top of the crystalline core of the Tatras, concentrations of the majority of ionic substances were the lowest due to limited leaching. Significantly higher concentration of ionic substances was detected in spring and stream samples draining sedimentary rocks. The influence of karst-type springs on the quality of stream water was also demonstrated. - Highlights: → We use SOM approach to explore physiochemical data for mountain waters. → Geologic structure and hydrological events impact water chemistry. → Limited leaching, typical of crystalline core, reflects in low water mineralization. → Sedimentary rocks are susceptible for leaching. → Eutrophication has not been shown to be a threat in the Chocholowska Valley. - Spatiotemporal dynamics of spring and stream water chemistry in unique high-mountain area was evaluated by the self-organizing map technique.

  16. Inferring the colonization of a mountain range--refugia vs. nunatak survival in high alpine ground beetles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohse, Konrad; Nicholls, James A; Stone, Graham N

    2011-01-01

    It has long been debated whether high alpine specialists survived ice ages in situ on small ice-free islands of habitat, so-called nunataks, or whether glacial survival was restricted to larger massifs de refuge at the periphery. We evaluate these alternative hypotheses in a local radiation of high alpine carabid beetles (genus Trechus) in the Orobian Alps, Northern Italy. While summits along the northern ridge of this mountain range were surrounded by the icesheet as nunataks during the last glacial maximum, southern areas remained unglaciated. We analyse a total of 1366 bp of mitochondrial (Cox1 and Cox2) data sampled from 150 individuals from twelve populations and 530 bp of nuclear (PEPCK) sequence sampled for a subset of 30 individuals. Using Bayesian inference, we estimate ancestral location states in the gene trees, which in turn are used to infer the most likely order of recolonization under a model of sequential founder events from a massif de refuge from the mitochondrial data. We test for the paraphyly expected under this model and for reciprocal monophyly predicted by a contrasting model of prolonged persistence of nunatak populations. We find that (i) only three populations are incompatible with the paraphyly of the massif de refuge model, (ii) both mitochondrial and nuclear data support separate refugial origins for populations on the western and eastern ends of the northern ridge, and (iii) mitochondrial node ages suggest persistence on the northern ridge for part of the last ice age. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  17. Source limitation of carbon gas emissions in high-elevation mountain streams and lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, John T.; Dornblaser, Mark M.; Stanley, Emily H.; Clow, David W.; Striegl, Robert G.

    2015-01-01

    Inland waters are an important component of the global carbon cycle through transport, storage, and direct emissions of CO2 and CH4 to the atmosphere. Despite predictions of high physical gas exchange rates due to turbulent flows and ubiquitous supersaturation of CO2—and perhaps also CH4—patterns of gas emissions are essentially undocumented for high mountain ecosystems. Much like other headwater networks around the globe, we found that high-elevation streams in Rocky Mountain National Park, USA, were supersaturated with CO2 during the growing season and were net sources to the atmosphere. CO2concentrations in lakes, on the other hand, tended to be less than atmospheric equilibrium during the open water season. CO2 and CH4 emissions from the aquatic conduit were relatively small compared to many parts of the globe. Irrespective of the physical template for high gas exchange (high k), we found evidence of CO2 source limitation to mountain streams during the growing season, which limits overall CO2emissions. Our results suggest a reduced importance of aquatic ecosystems for carbon cycling in high-elevation landscapes having limited soil development and high CO2 consumption via mineral weathering.

  18. Analysis of relation between geomorphologic processes and alpine vegetation in the high mountain landscape (Tatry Mts.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boltiziar, M.

    2003-01-01

    The aim was to present some information about starting of high mountains ecological monitoring and its first partial results. The research is focused on a long-term observation of vegetation changes (species composition, species spatial distribution) in relation to geomorphic processes and geo-relief attributes at meso- and micro-scale of landscape. We established in 2002 for this purpose six permanent plots (4 x 4 m) in the selected localities of High and Belianske Tatras Mts. (Author)

  19. Two extended haplotype blocks are associated with adaptation to high altitude habitats in East African honey bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Wallberg

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the genetic basis of adaption is a central task in biology. Populations of the honey bee Apis mellifera that inhabit the mountain forests of East Africa differ in behavior and morphology from those inhabiting the surrounding lowland savannahs, which likely reflects adaptation to these habitats. We performed whole genome sequencing on 39 samples of highland and lowland bees from two pairs of populations to determine their evolutionary affinities and identify the genetic basis of these putative adaptations. We find that in general, levels of genetic differentiation between highland and lowland populations are very low, consistent with them being a single panmictic population. However, we identify two loci on chromosomes 7 and 9, each several hundred kilobases in length, which exhibit near fixation for different haplotypes between highland and lowland populations. The highland haplotypes at these loci are extremely rare in samples from the rest of the world. Patterns of segregation of genetic variants suggest that recombination between haplotypes at each locus is suppressed, indicating that they comprise independent structural variants. The haplotype on chromosome 7 harbors nearly all octopamine receptor genes in the honey bee genome. These have a role in learning and foraging behavior in honey bees and are strong candidates for adaptation to highland habitats. Molecular analysis of a putative breakpoint indicates that it may disrupt the coding sequence of one of these genes. Divergence between the highland and lowland haplotypes at both loci is extremely high suggesting that they are ancient balanced polymorphisms that greatly predate divergence between the extant honey bee subspecies.

  20. Two extended haplotype blocks are associated with adaptation to high altitude habitats in East African honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schöning, Caspar

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the genetic basis of adaption is a central task in biology. Populations of the honey bee Apis mellifera that inhabit the mountain forests of East Africa differ in behavior and morphology from those inhabiting the surrounding lowland savannahs, which likely reflects adaptation to these habitats. We performed whole genome sequencing on 39 samples of highland and lowland bees from two pairs of populations to determine their evolutionary affinities and identify the genetic basis of these putative adaptations. We find that in general, levels of genetic differentiation between highland and lowland populations are very low, consistent with them being a single panmictic population. However, we identify two loci on chromosomes 7 and 9, each several hundred kilobases in length, which exhibit near fixation for different haplotypes between highland and lowland populations. The highland haplotypes at these loci are extremely rare in samples from the rest of the world. Patterns of segregation of genetic variants suggest that recombination between haplotypes at each locus is suppressed, indicating that they comprise independent structural variants. The haplotype on chromosome 7 harbors nearly all octopamine receptor genes in the honey bee genome. These have a role in learning and foraging behavior in honey bees and are strong candidates for adaptation to highland habitats. Molecular analysis of a putative breakpoint indicates that it may disrupt the coding sequence of one of these genes. Divergence between the highland and lowland haplotypes at both loci is extremely high suggesting that they are ancient balanced polymorphisms that greatly predate divergence between the extant honey bee subspecies. PMID:28542163

  1. Perspectives for an integrated understanding of tropical and temperate high-mountain lakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Catalan

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available High mountain lakes are extreme freshwater ecosystems and excellent sentinels of current global change. They are likely among the most comparable ecosystems across the world. The largest contrast occurs between lakes in temperate and tropical areas. The main difference arises from the seasonal patterns of heat exchange and the external loadings (carbon, phosphorus, metals. The consequence is a water column structure based on temperature, in temperate lakes, and oxygen, in tropical lakes. This essential difference implies that, in tropical lakes, one can expect a more sustained productivity throughout the year; a higher nutrient internal loading based on the mineralization of external organic matter; higher nitrification-denitrification potential related to the oxyclines; and a higher metal mobilization due to the permanently reduced bottom layer. Quantifying and linking these and other biogeochemical pathways to particular groups of organisms is in the current agenda of high-mountain limnology. The intrinsic difficulties of the taxonomic study of many of the organisms inhabiting these systems can be now overcome with the use of molecular techniques. These techniques will not only provide a much less ambiguous taxonomic knowledge of the microscopic world, but also will unveil new biogeochemical pathways that are difficult to measure chemically and will solve biogeographical puzzles of the distribution of some macroscopic organism, tracing the relationship with other areas. Daily variability and vertical gradients in the tropics are the main factors of phytoplankton species turnover in tropical lakes; whereas seasonality is the main driver in temperate communities. The study of phytoplankton in high-mountain lakes only makes sense in an integrated view of the microscopic ecosystem. A large part of the plankton biomass is in heterotrophic, and mixotrophic organisms and prokaryotes compete for dissolved resources with eukaryotic autotrophs. In fact

  2. High-mountain lakes provide a seasonal niche for migrant American dippers

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. M. Garwood; K. L. Pope; R. M. Bourque; M. D. Larson

    2009-01-01

    We studied summer use of high elevation lakes by American Dippers (Cinclus mexicanus) in the Trinity Alps Wilderness, California by conducting repeated point-count surveys at 16 study lakes coupled with a 5-year detailed survey of all available aquatic habitats in a single basin. We observed American Dippers during 36% of the point-count surveys...

  3. Friendly Habitat, Endangered Species: Ecological Theory and the Demise of a High School Mandarin Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shouse, Roger C.; Sun, Jinai

    2013-01-01

    This article presents a case study examining the demise of a high school Mandarin language program in a school district that appeared to offer an exceptionally friendly habitat for its survival. Though members of the school board majority who voted against funding the program offered rational explanations for their decision (e.g., insufficient…

  4. A guide to calculating habitat-quality metrics to inform conservation of highly mobile species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bieri, Joanna A.; Sample, Christine; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Diffendorfer, James E.; Earl, Julia E.; Erickson, Richard A.; Federico, Paula; Flockhart, D. T. Tyler; Nicol, Sam; Semmens, Darius J.; Skraber, T.; Wiederholt, Ruscena; Mattsson, Brady J.

    2018-01-01

    Many metrics exist for quantifying the relative value of habitats and pathways used by highly mobile species. Properly selecting and applying such metrics requires substantial background in mathematics and understanding the relevant management arena. To address this multidimensional challenge, we demonstrate and compare three measurements of habitat quality: graph-, occupancy-, and demographic-based metrics. Each metric provides insights into system dynamics, at the expense of increasing amounts and complexity of data and models. Our descriptions and comparisons of diverse habitat-quality metrics provide means for practitioners to overcome the modeling challenges associated with management or conservation of such highly mobile species. Whereas previous guidance for applying habitat-quality metrics has been scattered in diversified tracks of literature, we have brought this information together into an approachable format including accessible descriptions and a modeling case study for a typical example that conservation professionals can adapt for their own decision contexts and focal populations.Considerations for Resource ManagersManagement objectives, proposed actions, data availability and quality, and model assumptions are all relevant considerations when applying and interpreting habitat-quality metrics.Graph-based metrics answer questions related to habitat centrality and connectivity, are suitable for populations with any movement pattern, quantify basic spatial and temporal patterns of occupancy and movement, and require the least data.Occupancy-based metrics answer questions about likelihood of persistence or colonization, are suitable for populations that undergo localized extinctions, quantify spatial and temporal patterns of occupancy and movement, and require a moderate amount of data.Demographic-based metrics answer questions about relative or absolute population size, are suitable for populations with any movement pattern, quantify demographic

  5. High energy nucleonic component of cosmic rays at mountain altitudes

    CERN Document Server

    Stora, Raymond Félix

    The diffusion equations describing the unidimensional propagation of .the high energy nucleonic component of cosmic rays throughout the atmosphere are sol"V'ed under two assumptions: (l) The nucleon-nucleon collisions are described according to Fermi's therlnOdynamical model involving completely inelastic pion and.nucleon-antinucleon pair production. (2) A somewhat opposite assumption is made assuming partially elastic collisions without nucleon-anti.nucleon pair production. Due to the present inaccuracy of experiments, we are able to derive only tentati v.e conclusions. The values computed under both hypotheses for the absorption mean free path and the charged to neutral particles ratio are found in acceptable ranges when compared to experimental data. The diffeential energy spectrum at a given depth is always found steeper than the primary, and steeper than indicated by experimental values if the primary is taken proportional to the 2.5 inverse power of energy.

  6. Environmental program planning for the proposed high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-08-01

    This report was prepared to illustrate the policy and actions that the State of Nevada believe are required to assure that the quality of the environment is adequately considered during the course of the DOE work at the proposed high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain. The report describes the DOE environmental program and the studies planned by NWPO to reflect the State's position toward environmental protection. 41 refs., 2 figs., 11 tabs

  7. Palaeoethnobotanical Data from the High Mountainous Early Bronze Age Settlement of Tsaghkasar-1 (Mt. Aragats, Armenia)

    OpenAIRE

    Roman Hovsepyan

    2011-01-01

    Palaeoethnobotanical investigations suggest that at least part of the Early Bronze Age population of Tsaghkasar was settled and practiced agriculture in the high mountainous zone. People there appear to have cultivated hexa‐ and tetraploid wheats (probably bread wheat and emmer) and barley (possibly hulled). Bronze Age agriculture in the Southern Caucasus differs from earlier and later period when cultivation of pulses, oil‐producing plants, and other plants was common. This emphasis on the c...

  8. Soil physical properties of high mountain fields under bauxite mining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dalmo Arantes de Barros

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Mining contributes to the life quality of contemporary society, but can generate significant impacts, these being mitigated due to environmental controls adopted. This study aimed to characterize soil physical properties in high-altitude areas affected by bauxite mining, and to edaphic factors responses to restoration techniques used to recover mined areas in Poços de Caldas plateau, MG, Brazil. The experiment used 3 randomized block design involving within 2 treatments (before mining intervention and after environmental recovery, and 4 replicates (N=24. In each treatment, soil samples with deformed structures were determined: granulometry, water-dispersible clay content, flocculation index, particle density, stoniness level, water aggregate stability, and organic matter contend. Soil samples with preserved structures were used to determine soil density and the total volume of pores, macropores, and micropores. Homogenization of stoniness between soil layers as a result of soil mobilization was observed after the mined area recovery. Stoniness decreased in 0.10-0.20 m layer after recovery, but was similar in the 0-0.10 m layer in before and after samples. The recovery techniques restored organic matter levels to pre-mining levels. However, changes in soil, including an increase in soil flocculation degree and a decrease in water-dispersible clays, were still apparent post-recovery. Furthermore, mining operations caused structural changes to the superficial layer of soil, as demonstrated by an increase in soil density and a decrease in total porosity and macroporosity. Decreases in the water stability of aggregates were observed after mining operations.

  9. The Impact Snow Albedo Feedback over Mountain Regions as Examined through High-Resolution Regional Climate Change Experiments over the Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letcher, Theodore

    As the climate warms, the snow albedo feedback (SAF) will play a substantial role in shaping the climate response of mid-latitude mountain regions with transient snow cover. One such region is the Rocky Mountains of the western United States where large snow packs accumulate during the winter and persist throughout the spring. In this dissertation, the Weather Research and Forecast model (WRF) configured as a regional climate model is used to investigate the role of the SAF in determining the regional climate response to forced anthropogenic climate change. The regional effects of climate change are investigated by using the pseudo global warming (PGW) framework, which is an experimental configuration in a which a mean climate perturbation is added to the boundary forcing of a regional model, thus preserving the large-scale circulation entering the region through the model boundaries and isolating the mesoscale climate response. Using this framework, the impact of the SAF on the regional energetics and atmospheric dynamics is examined and quantified. Linear feedback analysis is used to quantify the strength of the SAF over the Headwaters region of the Colorado Rockies for a series of high-resolution PGW experiments. This technique is used to test sensitivity of the feedback strength to model resolution and land surface model. Over the Colorado Rockies, and integrated over the entire spring season, the SAF strength is largely insensitive to model resolution, however there are more substantial differences on the sub-seasonal (monthly) timescale. In contrast, the SAF strength over this region is very sensitive to choice of land surface model. These simulations are also used to investigate how spatial and diurnal variability in warming caused by the SAF influences the dynamics of thermally driven mountain-breeze circulations. It is shown that, the SAF causes stronger daytime mountain-breeze circulations by increasing the warming on the mountains slopes thus enhancing

  10. Site-level habitat models for the endemic, threatened Cheat Mountain salamander (Plethodon nettingi): the importance of geophysical and biotic attributes for predicting occurrence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester O. Dillard; Kevin R. Russell; W. Mark Ford

    2008-01-01

    The federally threatened Cheat Mountain salamander (Plethodon nettingi; hereafter CMS) is known to occur in approximately 70 small, scattered populations in the Allegheny Mountains of eastern West Virginia, USA. Current conservation and management efforts on federal, state, and private lands involving CMS largely rely on small scale, largely...

  11. Investigations of natural groundwater hazards at the proposed Yucca Mountain high level nuclear waste repository. Part A: Geology at Yucca Mountain. Part B: Modeling of hydro-tectonic phenomena relevant to Yucca Mountain. Annual report - Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Szymanski, J.S.; Schluter, C.M.; Livingston, D.E.

    1993-05-01

    This document is an annual report describing investigations of natural groundwater hazards at the proposed Yucca Mountain, Nevada High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository.This document describes research studies of the origin of near surface calcite/silica deposits at Yucca Mountain. The origin of these deposits is controversial and the authors have extended and strengthened the basis of their arguments for epigenetic, metasomatic alteration of the tuffs at Yucca Mountain. This report includes stratigraphic, mineralogical, and geochronological information along with geochemical data to support the conclusions described by Livingston and Szymanski, and others. As part of their first annual report, they take this opportunity to clarify the technical basis of their concerns and summarize the critical geological field evidence and related information. Selected papers are indexed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database

  12. High resolution critical habitat mapping and classification of tidal freshwater wetlands in the ACE Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strickland, Melissa Anne

    In collaboration with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources ACE Basin National Estuarine Research Reserve (ACE Basin NERR), the tidal freshwater ecosystems along the South Edisto River in the ACE Basin are being accurately mapped and classified using a LIDAR-Remote Sensing Fusion technique that integrates LAS LIDAR data into texture images and then merges the elevation textures and multispectral imagery for very high resolution mapping. This project discusses the development and refinement of an ArcGIS Toolbox capable of automating protocols and procedures for marsh delineation and microhabitat identification. The result is a high resolution habitat and land use map used for the identification of threatened habitat. Tidal freshwater wetlands are also a critical habitat for colonial wading birds and an accurate assessment of community diversity and acreage of this habitat type in the ACE Basin will support SCDNR's conservation and protection efforts. The maps developed by this study will be used to better monitor the freshwater/saltwater interface and establish a baseline for an ACE NERR monitoring program to track the rates and extent of alterations due to projected environmental stressors. Preliminary ground-truthing in the field will provide information about the accuracy of the mapping tool.

  13. Selection criteria for container materials at the proposed Yucca Mountain high level nuclear waste repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Halsey, W.G.

    1989-11-01

    A geological repository has been proposed for the permanent disposal of the nation's high level nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain in the Nevada desert. The containers for this waste must remain intact for the unprecedented service lifetime of 1000 years. A combination of engineering, regulatory, and licensing requirements complicate the container material selection. In parallel to gathering information regarding the Yucca Mountain service environment and material performance data, a set of selection criteria have been established which compare candidate materials to the performance requirements, and allow a quantitative comparison of candidates. These criteria assign relative weighting to varied topic areas such as mechanical properties, corrosion resistance, fabricability, and cost. Considering the long service life of the waste containers, it is not surprising that the corrosion behavior of the material is a dominant factor. 7 refs

  14. Seismotectonic investigations for Yucca Mountain high-level waste repository: Rationale for defining scope

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gupta, D.C.; Blackford, M.E.

    1990-01-01

    The geologic, seismic, and engineering characteristics of the Yucca Mountain site and its environs need to be investigated in sufficient scope and detail to provide reasonable assurance that they are sufficiently well understood to permit an adequate evaluation of the proposed site for the development of a high-level waste repository. The paper examines the extent of seismotectonic investigations needed for proper evaluation of the geologic setting. At the Yucca Mountain site, a thorough understanding of tectonic phenomena such as seismicity and faulting is critical to the identification of potentially disqualifying conditions. Study of the tectonic movement, stress, or co-tectonic effects that could affect the performance of the waste-handling facilities, waste package, underground openings, shaft and borehole seals, and long-term alteration of geohydrology would be necessary. In addition, the uncertainties involved in evaluating the effect of seismotectonics on the radionuclide transport mechanism need to be thoroughly investigated. 8 refs., 1 fig

  15. Dataset of Phenology of Mediterranean high-mountain meadows flora (Sierra Nevada, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Luque, Antonio Jesús; Sánchez-Rojas, Cristina Patricia; Zamora, Regino; Pérez-Pérez, Ramón; Bonet, Francisco Javier

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Sierra Nevada mountain range (southern Spain) hosts a high number of endemic plant species, being one of the most important biodiversity hotspots in the Mediterranean basin. The high-mountain meadow ecosystems (borreguiles) harbour a large number of endemic and threatened plant species. In this data paper, we describe a dataset of the flora inhabiting this threatened ecosystem in this Mediterranean mountain. The dataset includes occurrence data for flora collected in those ecosystems in two periods: 1988–1990 and 2009–2013. A total of 11002 records of occurrences belonging to 19 orders, 28 families 52 genera were collected. 73 taxa were recorded with 29 threatened taxa. We also included data of cover-abundance and phenology attributes for the records. The dataset is included in the Sierra Nevada Global-Change Observatory (OBSNEV), a long-term research project designed to compile socio-ecological information on the major ecosystem types in order to identify the impacts of global change in this area. PMID:25878552

  16. Dataset of Phenology of Mediterranean high-mountain meadows flora (Sierra Nevada, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Luque, Antonio Jesús; Sánchez-Rojas, Cristina Patricia; Zamora, Regino; Pérez-Pérez, Ramón; Bonet, Francisco Javier

    2015-01-01

    Sierra Nevada mountain range (southern Spain) hosts a high number of endemic plant species, being one of the most important biodiversity hotspots in the Mediterranean basin. The high-mountain meadow ecosystems (borreguiles) harbour a large number of endemic and threatened plant species. In this data paper, we describe a dataset of the flora inhabiting this threatened ecosystem in this Mediterranean mountain. The dataset includes occurrence data for flora collected in those ecosystems in two periods: 1988-1990 and 2009-2013. A total of 11002 records of occurrences belonging to 19 orders, 28 families 52 genera were collected. 73 taxa were recorded with 29 threatened taxa. We also included data of cover-abundance and phenology attributes for the records. The dataset is included in the Sierra Nevada Global-Change Observatory (OBSNEV), a long-term research project designed to compile socio-ecological information on the major ecosystem types in order to identify the impacts of global change in this area.

  17. Late glacial vegetation and climate changes in the high mountains of Bulgaria (Southeast Europe)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bozilova, E.D.; Tonkov, S.B.

    2005-01-01

    Full text: The Late glacial vegetation history in the high mountains of Southern Bulgaria (Rila, Pirin, Western Rhodopes) is reconstructed by means of pollen analysis, plant macrofossils and radiocarbon dating of sediments from lakes and peat-bogs located between 1300 and 2200 m a.s.l. The vegetation response to the climate fluctuations after 13000 14 C yrs. BP in the Rila Mountains is bound for the first time to a detailed chronological framework. Two stadial and one interstadial phases are delimited analogous with the Oldest Dryas-Bolling/Allerod-Younger Dryas cycle for Western Europe. During the stadials mountain-steppe vegetation composed of Artemisia, Chenopodiaceae, Poaceae and other cold-resistant herbs dominated at high elevation with sparse stands of Pinus, Betula, and shrubland of Juniperus and Ephedra. The climate improvement in the interstadial resulted in the initial spread of deciduous and coniferous trees (Quercus, Tilia, Corylus, Carpinus, Abies, Picea) from their local refugia below 1000 m. The palaeoecological record from the climate deterioration during the Younger Dryas is documented in thin sections of the cores investigated. (author)

  18. Snowmelt and sublimation: field experiments and modelling in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Schulz

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Snow in the High Atlas Mountains is a major source for freshwater renewal and for water availability in the semi-arid lowlands of south-eastern Morocco. Snowfall- and snow-ablation monitoring and modelling is important for estimating potential water delivery from the mountain water towers to the forelands. This study is part of GLOWA-IMPETUS, an integrated management project dealing with scarce water resources in West Africa. The Ameskar study area is located to the south of the High Atlas Mountains, in their rain shadow. As a part of the M’Goun river basin within the upper Drâa valley, the study area is characterised by high radiation inputs, low atmospheric humidity and long periods with sub-zero temperatures. Its altitude ranges between 2000 m and 4000 m, with dominant north- and south-facing slopes. Snowfall occurs mainly from November to April but even summit regions can become repeatedly devoid of snow cover. Snow cover maps for the M’Goun basin (1240 km2 are derived from calculations of NDSI (Normalized Difference Snow Index from MODIS satellite images and snow depth is monitored at four automatic weather stations between 2000–4000 m. Snowfall events are infrequent at lower altitudes. The presence of snow penitentes at altitudes above 3000 m indicates that snow sublimation is an important component of snow ablation. Snow ablation was modelled with the UEB Utah Energy Balance Model (Tarboton and Luce, 1996. This single layer, physically-based, point energy and mass balance model is driven by meteorological variables recorded at the automatic weather stations at Tounza (2960 m and Tichki (3260 m. Data from snow pillows at Tounza and Tichki are used to validate the model’s physical performance in terms of energy and water balances for a sequence of two snowfall events in the winter of 2003/4. First UEB modelling results show good overall performance and timing of snowmelt and sublimation compared to field investigations. Up to 44

  19. Seasonal Patterns of Dry Deposition at a High-Elevation Site in the Colorado Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldani, Kaley M.; Mladenov, Natalie; Williams, Mark W.; Campbell, Cari M.; Lipson, David A.

    2017-10-01

    In the Colorado Rocky Mountains, high-elevation barren soils are deficient in carbon (C) and phosphorus (P) and enriched in nitrogen (N). The seasonal variability of dry deposition and its contributions to alpine elemental budgets is critical to understanding how dry deposition influences biogeochemical cycling in high-elevation environments. In this 2 year study, we evaluated dry and wet deposition inputs to the Niwot Ridge Long Term Ecological Research (NWT LTER) site in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. The total organic C flux in wet + dry (including soluble and particulate C) deposition was >30 kg C ha-1 yr-1 and represents a substantial input for this C-limited environment. Our side-by-side comparison of dry deposition collectors with and without marble insert indicated that the insert improved retention of dry deposition by 28%. Annual average dry deposition fluxes of water-soluble organic carbon (4.25 kg C ha-1 yr-1) and other water-soluble constituents, including ammonium (0.16 kg NH4+ha-1 yr-1), nitrate (1.99 kg NO3- ha-1 yr-1), phosphate (0.08 kg PO43- ha-1 yr-1), and sulfate (1.20 kg SO42- ha-1 yr-1), were comparable to those in wet deposition, with highest values measured in the summer. Backward trajectory analyses implicate air masses passing through the arid west and Four Corners, USA, as dominant source areas for dry deposition, especially in spring months. Synchronous temporal patterns of deposition observed at the NWT LTER site and a distant Rocky Mountain National Park Clean Air Status and Trends Network site indicate that seasonal dry deposition patterns are regional phenomena with important implications for the larger Rocky Mountain region.

  20. Barrier effects of remote high mountain on atmospheric metal transport in the eastern Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bing, Haijian; Zhou, Jun; Wu, Yanhong; Luo, Xiaosan; Xiang, Zhongxiang; Sun, Hongyang; Wang, Jipeng; Zhu, He

    2018-07-01

    Anthropogenic metals adsorbed on suspended fine particles can be deposited on remote and inaccessible high mountains by long-range atmospheric transport. In this study, we investigated the cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) in the soils, mosses and rainfall of three transects on the Gongga Mountain, eastern Tibetan Plateau, to understand the mountain interception effects on their atmospheric transport. The concentrations of Cd and Pb in the soils and mosses displayed a pattern of eastern transect>northern transect>western transect. The distribution of Cd and Pb on the eastern transect increased from 2000 to 2900m a.s.l. (above sea level), decreased toward the timberline, and increased again with altitude; on the northern transect, it generally decreased with altitude whereas a distribution trend was not clearly observed on the western transect. The Cd and Pb concentrations in the rainfall of the eastern transect generally decreased with altitude, and they were higher inside forests than outside forests and temporally higher in the winter than the summer. The Pb isotopic ratios coupled with moss bio-monitoring distinguished anthropogenic sources of Cd and Pb on the eastern and northern transects, whereas bedrock weathering was the main source of Cd and Pb on the western transect. We proposed a conceptual model to delineate the effects of terrain, local climate and vegetation on the transport of atmospheric metals. Our results highlighted the high mountains in the eastern Tibetan Plateau as an effective natural barrier limiting atmospheric metal transport. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Climate change and tree-line ecosystems in the Sierra Nevada: Habitat suitability modelling to inform high-elevation forest dynamics monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Peggy E.; Alvarez, Otto; McKinney, Shawn T.; Li, Wenkai; Brooks, Matthew L.; Guo, Qinghua

    2017-01-01

    Whitebark pine and foxtail pine serve foundational roles in the subalpine zone of the Sierra Nevada. They provide the dominant structure in tree-line forests and regulate key ecosystem processes and community dynamics. Climate change models suggest that there will be changes in temperature regimes and in the timing and magnitude of precipitation within the current distribution of these species, and these changes may alter the species’ distributional limits. Other stressors include the non-native pathogen white pine blister rust and mountain pine beetle, which have played a role in the decline of whitebark pine throughout much of its range. The National Park Service is monitoring status and trends of these species. This report provides complementary information in the form of habitat suitability models to predict climate change impacts on the future distribution of these species within Sierra Nevada national parks.We used maximum entropy modeling to build habitat suitability models by relating species occurrence to environmental variables. Species occurrence was available from 328 locations for whitebark pine and 244 for foxtail pine across the species’ distributions within the parks. We constructed current climate surfaces for modeling by interpolating data from weather stations. Climate surfaces included mean, minimum, and maximum temperature and total precipitation for January, April, July, and October. We downscaled five general circulation models for the 2050s and the 2090s from ~125 km2 to 1 km2 under both an optimistic and an extreme climate scenario to bracket potential climatic change and its influence on projected suitable habitat. To describe anticipated changes in the distribution of suitable habitat, we compared, for each species, climate scenario, and time period, the current models with future models in terms of proportional change in habitat size, elevation distribution, model center points, and where habitat is predicted to expand or contract

  2. Depths to Ice-cemented Soils in High-elevation Quartermain Mountains, Dry Valleys, Antarctica, Version 1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set is comprised of four surveyed valleys focusing on the depth to ground ice in the high-elevation Quartermain Mountains in the Beacon Valley area:...

  3. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chihiro Takahata

    Full Text Available When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF. Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores.

  4. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

    When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus) are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF). Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores.

  5. Coastal habitat mapping in the Aegean Sea using high resolution orthophoto maps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topouzelis, Konstantinos; Papakonstantinou, Apostolos; Doukari, Michaela; Stamatis, Panagiotis; Makri, Despina; Katsanevakis, Stelios

    2017-09-01

    The significance of coastal habitat mapping lies in the need to prevent from anthropogenic interventions and other factors. Until 2015, Landsat-8 (30m) imagery were used as medium spatial resolution satellite imagery. So far, Sentinel-2 satellite imagery is very useful for more detailed regional scale mapping. However, the use of high resolution orthophoto maps, which are determined from UAV data, is expected to improve the mapping accuracy. This is due to small spatial resolution of the orthophoto maps (30 cm). This paper outlines the integration of UAS for data acquisition and Structure from Motion (SfM) pipeline for the visualization of selected coastal areas in the Aegean Sea. Additionally, the produced orthophoto maps analyzed through an object-based image analysis (OBIA) and nearest-neighbor classification for mapping the coastal habitats. Classification classes included the main general habitat types, i.e. seagrass, soft bottom, and hard bottom The developed methodology applied at the Koumbara beach (Ios Island - Greece). Results showed that UAS's data revealed the sub-bottom complexity in large shallow areas since they provide such information in the spatial resolution that permits the mapping of seagrass meadows with extreme detail. The produced habitat vectors are ideal as reference data for studies with satellite data of lower spatial resolution.

  6. A sightability model for mountain goats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, C.G.; Jenkins, K.J.; Chang, W.-Y.

    2009-01-01

    Unbiased estimates of mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus) populations are key to meeting diverse harvest management and conservation objectives. We developed logistic regression models of factors influencing sightability of mountain goat groups during helicopter surveys throughout the Cascades and Olympic Ranges in western Washington during summers, 20042007. We conducted 205 trials of the ability of aerial survey crews to detect groups of mountain goats whose presence was known based on simultaneous direct observation from the ground (n 84), Global Positioning System (GPS) telemetry (n 115), or both (n 6). Aerial survey crews detected 77 and 79 of all groups known to be present based on ground observers and GPS collars, respectively. The best models indicated that sightability of mountain goat groups was a function of the number of mountain goats in a group, presence of terrain obstruction, and extent of overstory vegetation. Aerial counts of mountain goats within groups did not differ greatly from known group sizes, indicating that under-counting bias within detected groups of mountain goats was small. We applied HorvitzThompson-like sightability adjustments to 1,139 groups of mountain goats observed in the Cascade and Olympic ranges, Washington, USA, from 2004 to 2007. Estimated mean sightability of individual animals was 85 but ranged 0.750.91 in areas with low and high sightability, respectively. Simulations of mountain goat surveys indicated that precision of population estimates adjusted for sightability biases increased with population size and number of replicate surveys, providing general guidance for the design of future surveys. Because survey conditions, group sizes, and habitat occupied by goats vary among surveys, we recommend using sightability correction methods to decrease bias in population estimates from aerial surveys of mountain goats.

  7. Mountain birch – potentially large source of sesquiterpenes into high latitude atmosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Arneth

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs from mountain birches were measured in Abisko, northern Sweden. Mountain birches make up the majority of the tree biomass in Scandinavian high latitudes, a region subject to significant climate warming. The measurements were carried out in two growing seasons. The emissions of four branches, each from a different individual tree, were measured in June–August 2006 and one of them again in July 2007. The measurements were conducted using a dynamic flow through chamber covered with Teflon film. The studied mountain birches were found to emit substantial amounts of linalool, monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. The monoterpene emission was dominated by sabinene. The magnitude and composition of the sesquiterpene emission changed dramatically between the years. For example, the average α-farnesene emission potential in 2006 was almost 2600 ng gdw−1 h−1 (3.5 pmol gdw−1 s−1 while in 2007 α-farnesene was not detected at all. Also the emissions of other sesquiterpenes decreased in 2007 to a fraction of that in 2006. One possible explanation for the change in emissions is the herbivory damage that occurred in the area in 2004. Herbivory is known to enhance the emissions of sesquiterpenes, especially those of α-farnesene, and the effect may last for several years.

  8. Nitrogen cycling responses to mountain pine beetle disturbance in a high elevation whitebark pine ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keville, Megan P; Reed, Sasha C; Cleveland, Cory C

    2013-01-01

    Ecological disturbances can significantly affect biogeochemical cycles in terrestrial ecosystems, but the biogeochemical consequences of the extensive mountain pine beetle outbreak in high elevation whitebark pine (WbP) (Pinus albicaulis) ecosystems of western North America have not been previously investigated. Mountain pine beetle attack has driven widespread WbP mortality, which could drive shifts in both the pools and fluxes of nitrogen (N) within these ecosystems. Because N availability can limit forest regrowth, understanding how beetle-induced mortality affects N cycling in WbP stands may be critical to understanding the trajectory of ecosystem recovery. Thus, we measured above- and belowground N pools and fluxes for trees representing three different times since beetle attack, including unattacked trees. Litterfall N inputs were more than ten times higher under recently attacked trees compared to unattacked trees. Soil inorganic N concentrations also increased following beetle attack, potentially driven by a more than two-fold increase in ammonium (NH₄⁺) concentrations in the surface soil organic horizon. However, there were no significant differences in mineral soil inorganic N or soil microbial biomass N concentrations between attacked and unattacked trees, implying that short-term changes in N cycling in response to the initial stages of WbP attack were restricted to the organic horizon. Our results suggest that while mountain pine beetle attack drives a pulse of N from the canopy to the forest floor, changes in litterfall quality and quantity do not have profound effects on soil biogeochemical cycling, at least in the short-term. However, continuous observation of these important ecosystems will be crucial to determining the long-term biogeochemical effects of mountain pine beetle outbreaks.

  9. Nitrogen cycling responses to mountain pine beetle disturbance in a high elevation whitebark pine ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keville, Megan P.; Reed, Sasha C.; Cleveland, Cory C.

    2013-01-01

    Ecological disturbances can significantly affect biogeochemical cycles in terrestrial ecosystems, but the biogeochemical consequences of the extensive mountain pine beetle outbreak in high elevation whitebark pine (WbP) (Pinus albicaulis) ecosystems of western North America have not been previously investigated. Mountain pine beetle attack has driven widespread WbP mortality, which could drive shifts in both the pools and fluxes of nitrogen (N) within these ecosystems. Because N availability can limit forest regrowth, understanding how beetle-induced mortality affects N cycling in WbP stands may be critical to understanding the trajectory of ecosystem recovery. Thus, we measured above- and belowground N pools and fluxes for trees representing three different times since beetle attack, including unattacked trees. Litterfall N inputs were more than ten times higher under recently attacked trees compared to unattacked trees. Soil inorganic N concentrations also increased following beetle attack, potentially driven by a more than two-fold increase in ammonium (NH4+) concentrations in the surface soil organic horizon. However, there were no significant differences in mineral soil inorganic N or soil microbial biomass N concentrations between attacked and unattacked trees, implying that short-term changes in N cycling in response to the initial stages of WbP attack were restricted to the organic horizon. Our results suggest that while mountain pine beetle attack drives a pulse of N from the canopy to the forest floor, changes in litterfall quality and quantity do not have profound effects on soil biogeochemical cycling, at least in the short-term. However, continuous observation of these important ecosystems will be crucial to determining the long-term biogeochemical effects of mountain pine beetle outbreaks.

  10. URJC GB dataset: Community-based seed bank of Mediterranean high-mountain and semi-arid plant species at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso, Patricia; Iriondo, José María

    2014-01-01

    The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos was created in 2008 and currently holds 235 accessions and 96 species. This bank focuses on the conservation of wild-plant communities and aims to conserve ex situ a representative sample of the plant biodiversity present in a habitat, emphasizing priority ecosystems identified by the Habitats Directive. It is also used to store plant material for research and teaching purposes. The collection consists of three subcollections, two representative of typical habitats in the center of the Iberian Peninsula: high-mountain pastures (psicroxerophylous pastures) and semi-arid habitats (gypsophylic steppes), and a third representative of the genus Lupinus. The high-mountain subcollection currently holds 153 accessions (63 species), the semi-arid subcollection has 76 accessions (29 species,) and the Lupinus subcollection has 6 accessions (4 species). All accessions are stored in a freezer at -18 °C in Kilner jars with silica gel. The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos follows a quality control protocol which describes the workflow performed with seeds from seed collection to storage. All collectors are members of research groups with great experience in species identification. Herbarium specimens associated with seed accessions are preserved and 63% of the records have been georreferenced with GPS and radio points. The dataset provides unique information concerning the location of populations of plant species that form part of the psicroxerophylous pastures and gypsophylic steppes of Central Spain as well as populations of genus Lupinus in the Iberian Peninsula. It also provides relevant information concerning mean seed weight and seed germination values under specific incubation conditions. This dataset has already been used by researchers of the Area of Biodiversity and Conservation of URJC as a source of information for the design and implementation of experimental designs in these plant communities. Since

  11. URJC GB dataset: Community-based seed bank of Mediterranean high-mountain and semi-arid plant species at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Alonso

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos was created in 2008 and currently holds 235 accessions and 96 species. This bank focuses on the conservation of wild-plant communities and aims to conserve ex situ a representative sample of the plant biodiversity present in a habitat, emphasizing priority ecosystems identified by the Habitats Directive. It is also used to store plant material for research and teaching purposes. The collection consists of three subcollections, two representative of typical habitats in the center of the Iberian Peninsula: high-mountain pastures (psicroxerophylous pastures and semi-arid habitats (gypsophylic steppes, and a third representative of the genus Lupinus. The high-mountain subcollection currently holds 153 accessions (63 species, the semi-arid subcollection has 76 accessions (29 species, and the Lupinus subcollection has 6 accessions (4 species. All accessions are stored in a freezer at -18 °C in Kilner jars with silica gel. The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos follows a quality control protocol which describes the workflow performed with seeds from seed collection to storage. All collectors are members of research groups with great experience in species identification. Herbarium specimens associated with seed accessions are preserved and 63% of the records have been georreferenced with GPS and radio points. The dataset provides unique information concerning the location of populations of plant species that form part of the psicroxerophylous pastures and gypsophylic steppes of Central Spain as well as populations of genus Lupinus in the Iberian Peninsula. It also provides relevant information concerning mean seed weight and seed germination values under specific incubation conditions. This dataset has already been used by researchers of the Area of Biodiversity and Conservation of URJC as a source of information for the design and implementation of experimental designs in these plant

  12. High Resolution Habitat Suitability Modelling For Restricted-Range Hawaiian Alpine Arthropod Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, N. M.

    2016-12-01

    Mapping potentially suitable habitat is critical for effective species conservation and management but can be challenging in areas exhibiting complex heterogeneity. An approach that combines non-intrusive spatial data collection techniques and field data can lead to a better understanding of landscapes and species distributions. Nysius wekiuicola, commonly known as the wēkiu bug, is the most studied arthropod species endemic to the Maunakea summit in Hawai`i, yet details about its geographic distribution and habitat use remain poorly understood. To predict the geographic distribution of N. wekiuicola, MaxEnt habitat suitability models were generated from a diverse set of input variables, including fifteen years of species occurrence data, high resolution digital elevation models, surface mineralogy maps derived from hyperspectral remote sensing, and climate data. Model results indicate that elevation (78.2 percent), and the presence of nanocrystalline hematite surface minerals (13.7 percent) had the highest influence, with lesser contributions from aspect, slope, and other surface mineral classes. Climatic variables were not included in the final analysis due to auto-correlation and coarse spatial resolution. Biotic factors relating to predation and competition also likely dictate wēkiu bug capture patterns and influence our results. The wēkiu bug range and habitat suitability models generated as a result of this study will be directly incorporated into management and restoration goals for the summit region and can also be adapted for other arthropod species present, leading to a more holistic understanding of metacommunity dynamics. Key words: Microhabitat, Structure from Motion, Lidar, MaxEnt, Habitat Suitability

  13. Phylogenetic and Functional Analysis of Metagenome Sequence from High-Temperature Archaeal Habitats Demonstrate Linkages between Metabolic Potential and Geochemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Inskeep, William P; Jay, Zackary J; Herrgard, Markus

    2013-01-01

    Geothermal habitats in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) provide an unparalleled opportunity to understand the environmental factors that control the distribution of archaea in thermal habitats. Here we describe, analyze, and synthesize metagenomic and geochemical data collected from seven high-tem...

  14. Spider diversity in relation to habitat heterogeneity and an altitudinal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Using pitfall traps, wandering spiders (Arachnida: Araneae) were sampled in a nested design from three different localities in the mountainous arid ecosystem of South Sinai at low, middle, and high altitudes. Habitat type and altitude were clearly different among the three localities. Spider diversity per trap varied spatially ...

  15. Recent and future warm extreme events and high-mountain slope stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huggel, C; Salzmann, N; Allen, S; Caplan-Auerbach, J; Fischer, L; Haeberli, W; Larsen, C; Schneider, D; Wessels, R

    2010-05-28

    The number of large slope failures in some high-mountain regions such as the European Alps has increased during the past two to three decades. There is concern that recent climate change is driving this increase in slope failures, thus possibly further exacerbating the hazard in the future. Although the effects of a gradual temperature rise on glaciers and permafrost have been extensively studied, the impacts of short-term, unusually warm temperature increases on slope stability in high mountains remain largely unexplored. We describe several large slope failures in rock and ice in recent years in Alaska, New Zealand and the European Alps, and analyse weather patterns in the days and weeks before the failures. Although we did not find one general temperature pattern, all the failures were preceded by unusually warm periods; some happened immediately after temperatures suddenly dropped to freezing. We assessed the frequency of warm extremes in the future by analysing eight regional climate models from the recently completed European Union programme ENSEMBLES for the central Swiss Alps. The models show an increase in the higher frequency of high-temperature events for the period 2001-2050 compared with a 1951-2000 reference period. Warm events lasting 5, 10 and 30 days are projected to increase by about 1.5-4 times by 2050 and in some models by up to 10 times. Warm extremes can trigger large landslides in temperature-sensitive high mountains by enhancing the production of water by melt of snow and ice, and by rapid thaw. Although these processes reduce slope strength, they must be considered within the local geological, glaciological and topographic context of a slope.

  16. Crustal structure under the central High Atlas Mountains (Morocco) from geological and gravity data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayarza, P.; Alvarez-Lobato, F.; Teixell, A.; Arboleya, M. L.; Tesón, E.; Julivert, M.; Charroud, M.

    2005-05-01

    Seismic wide angle and receiver function results together with geological data have been used as constraints to build a gravity-based crustal model of the central High Atlas of Morocco. Integration of a newly acquired set of gravity values with public data allowed us to undertake 2-2.5D gravity modelling along two profiles that cross the entire mountain chain. Modelling suggests moderate crustal thickening, and a general state of Airy isostatic undercompensation. Localized thickening appears restricted to the vicinity of a north-dipping crustal-scale thrust fault, that offsets the Moho discontinuity and defines a small crustal root which accounts for the minimum Bouguer gravity anomaly values. Gravity modelling indicates that this root has a northeasterly strike, slightly oblique to the ENE general orientation of the High Atlas belt. A consequence of the obliquity between the High Atlas borders and its internal and deep structure is the lack of correlation between Bouguer gravity anomaly values and topography. Active buckling affecting the crust, a highly elevated asthenosphere, or a combination of both are addressed as side mechanisms that help to maintain the high elevations of the Atlas mountains.

  17. Global Monitoring of Mountain Glaciers Using High-Resolution Spotlight Imaging from the International Space Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donnellan, A.; Green, J. J.; Bills, B. G.; Goguen, J.; Ansar, A.; Knight, R. L.; Hallet, B.; Scambos, T. A.; Thompson, L. G.; Morin, P. J.

    2013-12-01

    Mountain glaciers around the world are retreating rapidly, contributing about 20% to present-day sea level rise. Numerous studies have shown that mountain glaciers are sensitive to global environmental change. Temperate-latitude glaciers and snowpack provide water for over 1 billion people. Glaciers are a resource for irrigation and hydroelectric power, but also pose flood and avalanche hazards. Accurate mass balance assessments have been made for only 280 glaciers, yet there are over 130,000 in the World Glacier Inventory. The rate of glacier retreat or advance can be highly variable, is poorly sampled, and inadequately understood. Liquid water from ice front lakes, rain, melt, or sea water and debris from rocks, dust, or pollution interact with glacier ice often leading to an amplification of warming and further melting. Many mountain glaciers undergo rapid and episodic events that greatly change their mass balance or extent but are sparsely documented. Events include calving, outburst floods, opening of crevasses, or iceberg motion. Spaceborne high-resolution spotlight optical imaging provides a means of clarifying the relationship between the health of mountain glaciers and global environmental change. Digital elevation models (DEMs) can be constructed from a series of images from a range of perspectives collected by staring at a target during a satellite overpass. It is possible to collect imagery for 1800 targets per month in the ×56° latitude range, construct high-resolution DEMs, and monitor changes in high detail over time with a high-resolution optical telescope mounted on the International Space Station (ISS). Snow and ice type, age, and maturity can be inferred from different color bands as well as distribution of liquid water. Texture, roughness, albedo, and debris distribution can be estimated by measuring bidirectional reflectance distribution functions (BRDF) and reflectance intensity as a function of viewing angle. The non-sun-synchronous orbit

  18. Correction of Excessive Precipitation Over Steep and High Mountains in a General Circulation Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chao, Winston C.

    2012-01-01

    Excessive precipitation over steep and high mountains (EPSM) is a well-known problem in GCMs and meso-scale models. This problem impairs simulation and data assimilation products. Among the possible causes investigated in this study, we found that the most important one, by far, is a missing upward transport of heat out of the boundary layer due to the vertical circulations forced by the daytime upslope winds, which are forced by the heated boundary layer on subgrid-scale slopes. These upslope winds are associated with large subgrid-scale topographic variation, which is found over steep and high mountains. Without such subgridscale heat ventilation, the resolvable-scale upslope flow in the boundary layer generated by surface sensible heat flux along the mountain slopes is excessive. Such an excessive resolvablescale upslope flow combined with the high moisture content in the boundary layer results in excessive moisture transport toward mountaintops, which in turn gives rise to EPSM. Other possible causes of EPSM that we have investigated include 1) a poorly-designed horizontal moisture flux in the terrain-following coordinates, 2) the condition for cumulus convection being too easily satisfied at mountaintops, 3) the presence of conditional instability of the computational kind, and 4) the absence of blocked flow drag. These are all minor or inconsequential. We have parameterized the ventilation effects of the subgrid-scale heated-slope-induced vertical circulation (SHVC) by removing heat from the boundary layer and depositing it in layers higher up when the topographic variance exceeds a critical value. Test results using NASA/Goddard's GEOS-S GCM have shown that this largely solved the EPSM problem.

  19. Production of high-resolution digital terrain models in mountain regions to support risk assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianfranco Forlani

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Demand for high-accuracy digital terrain models (DTMs in the Alpine region has been steadily increasing in recent years in valleys as well as high mountains. In the former, the determination of the geo-mechanical parameters of rock masses is the main objective; global warming, which causes the retreat of glaciers and the reduction of permafrost, is the main drive of the latter. The consequence is the instability of rock masses in high mountains: new cost-effective monitoring techniques are required to deal with the peculiar characteristics of such environment, delivering results at short notice. After discussing the design and execution of photogrammetric surveys in such areas, with particular reference to block orientation and block control, the paper describes the production of DTMs of rock faces and glacier fronts with light instrumentation and data acquisition techniques, allowing highly automated data processing. To this aim, the PhotoGPS technique and structure from motion algorithms are used to speed up the orientation process, while dense matching area-based correlation techniques are used to generate the DTMs.

  20. Soil monitoring in agro-ecosystems of high mountain zone in Quindio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sadeghian, Siavosh; Orozco, O l; Murgueitio, E

    2001-01-01

    Were evaluated soil characteristics in 4 common agro-ecosystems of high mountain zone of Quindio department, soil forest exhibit better indicators that others systems. Low macro porosity and hydraulic conductivity were consequences more important of cattle ranching systems. In pinus plantations were registered lower value of organic matter, pH, interchanging bases, gravimetric moisture and microbial activity CO 2 . As a result of pinus establishment on pasture ground increase drainable porosity and hydraulic conductivity. In granadilla cultivation were lower organism diversity and structural stability

  1. Palaeoethnobotanical Data from the High Mountainous Early Bronze Age Settlement of Tsaghkasar-1 (Mt. Aragats, Armenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roman Hovsepyan

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Palaeoethnobotanical investigations suggest that at least part of the Early Bronze Age population of Tsaghkasar was settled and practiced agriculture in the high mountainous zone. People there appear to have cultivated hexa‐ and tetraploid wheats (probably bread wheat and emmer and barley (possibly hulled. Bronze Age agriculture in the Southern Caucasus differs from earlier and later period when cultivation of pulses, oil‐producing plants, and other plants was common. This emphasis on the cultivation and use of certain cereal grains at Early Bronze sites such as Tsaghkasar can tentatively be added to a constellation of practices associated with the Kura‐Araxes culture in the South Caucasus.

  2. Sex- and habitat-specific responses of a high arctic willow, Salix arctica, to experimental climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jones, M.H.; Macdonald, S.E. [Univ. of Alberta, Dept. of Renewable Resources, Edmonton, AB (Canada); Henry, G.H.R. [Univ. of British Columbia, Dept. of Geography, Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    1999-10-01

    Dioecious plant species and those occupying diverse habitats may present special analytical problems to researchers examining effects of climate change. Here we report the results from two complementary studies designed to determine the importance of sex and habitat on gas exchange and growth of male and female individuals of a dioecious, circumpolar willow, Salix arctica, in the Canadian High Arctic. In field studies, male and female willows from dry and wet habitats were subjected to passively enhanced summer temperature ({approx} to 1.3 deg C) using small open-top chambers over three years. Peak season gas exchange varied significantly by willow sex and habitat. Overall net assimilation was higher in the dry habitat than in the wet, and higher in females than in males. In the dry habitat, net assimilation of females was enhanced by experimental warming, but decreased in males. In the wet habitat, net assimilation of females was substantially depressed by experimental warming, while males showed an inconsistent response. Development and growth of male and female catkins were enhanced by elevated temperature more than leaf fascicles, but leaf fascicle development and growth varied more between the two habitats, particularly in males. In a controlled environment study, male and female willows from these same wet and dry habitats were grown in a 2x2 factorial experiment including 1 x or 2 x ambient [CO{sub 2}] and 5 or 12 deg. C. The sexes responded very differently to the experimental treatments, but we found no effect of original habitat. Net assimilation in males was affected by the interaction of temperature and CO{sub 2}, but in females by CO{sub 2} only. Our results demonstrate (a) significant intraspecific and intersexual differences in arctic willow physiology and growth, (b) that these differences are affected by environmental conditions expected to accompany global climate change, and (c) that sex- and habitat-specific responses should be explicitly

  3. Yucca Mountain and The Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    NA

    2005-01-01

    The Yucca Mountain Project places a high priority on protecting the environment. To ensure compliance with all state and federal environmental laws and regulations, the Project established an Environmental Management System. Important elements of the Environmental Management System include the following: (1) monitoring air, water, and other natural resources; (2) protecting plant and animal species by minimizing land disturbance; (3) restoring vegetation and wildlife habitat in disturbed areas; (4) protecting cultural resources; (5) minimizing waste, preventing pollution, and promoting environmental awareness; and (6) managing of hazardous and non-hazardous waste. Reducing the impacts of Project activities on the environment will continue for the duration of the Project

  4. Simulating Spawning and Juvenile Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss Habitat in Colorado River Based on High-Flow Effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weiwei Yao

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available High flow generates significant alterations in downstream river reaches, resulting in physical condition changes in the downstream regions of the river such as water depth, flow velocity, water temperature and river bed. These alterations will lead to change in fish habitat configuration in the river. This paper proposes a model system to evaluate the high flow effects on river velocity, water depth, substrates changes, temperature distribution and consequently assess the change in spawning and juvenile rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss habitats in the downstream region of the Glen Canyon Dam. Firstly, based on the 2 dimensional (2D depth-averaged CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics model and heat transfer equation applied for simulation, three indices were simulated, namely depth, flow velocity and temperature distribution. Then, the spawning and juvenile fish preference curves were obtained based on these three indices and substrates distribution. After that, the habitat model was proposed and used to simulate the high flow effects on juvenile and spawning rainbow trout habitat structure. Finally, the weighted usable area (WUA and overall suitability index (OSI of the spawning and juvenile fish species were quantitatively simulated to estimate the habitat sensitivity. The results illustrate that the high flow effect (HFE increased the juvenile rainbow trout habitat quality but decreased the spawning rainbow trout habitat quality. The juvenile trout were mainly affected by the water depth while the spawning rainbow trout were dominated by the bed elevation.

  5. High-resolution mapping of European fishing pressure on the benthic habitats

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eigaard, Ole Ritzau; Bastardie, Francois; Hintzen, Niels T.

    effort. Consequently, most logbook information is not well suited for quantitative estimation of seafloor impact (swept area and impact severity) of the different gears and trips. We present a method to overcome this information deficiency of official statistics and develop high-resolution large......) and gear width estimates were assigned to individual interpolated vessel tracks based on VMS data. The outcome was European wide highresolution fishing intensity maps (total yearly swept area within grid cells of 1*1 minutes longitude and latitude) for 2010, 2011 and 2012. Finally the high-resolution...... fishing pressure maps were overlaid with existing marine habitat maps to identify areas of potential ecosystem service conflicts...

  6. High variability of dung beetle diversity patterns at four mountains of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfonsina Arriaga-Jiménez

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Insect diversity patterns of high mountain ecosystems remain poorly studied in the tropics. Sampling dung beetles of the subfamilies Aphodiinae, Scarabaeinae, and Geotrupinae was carried out at four volcanoes in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TMVB in the Mexican transition zone at 2,700 and 3,400 MASL, and on the windward and leeward sides. Sampling units represented a forest–shrubland–pasture (FSP mosaic typical of this mountain region. A total of 3,430 individuals of 29 dung beetle species were collected. Diversity, abundance and compositional similarity (CS displayed a high variability at all scales; elevation, cardinal direction, or FSP mosaics did not show any patterns of higher or lower values of those measures. The four mountains were different regarding dispersion patterns and taxonomic groups, both for species and individuals. Onthophagus chevrolati dominated all four mountains with an overall relative abundance of 63%. CS was not related to distance among mountains, but when O. chevrolati was excluded from the analysis, CS values based on species abundance decreased with increasing distance. Speciation, dispersion, and environmental instability are suggested as the main drivers of high mountain diversity patterns, acting together at different spatial and temporal scales. Three species new to science were collected (>10% of all species sampled. These discoveries may indicate that speciation rate is high among these volcanoes—a hypothesis that is also supported by the elevated number of collected species with a restricted montane distribution. Dispersion is an important factor in driving species composition, although naturally limited between high mountains; horizontal colonization events at different time scales may best explain the observed species composition in the TMVB, complemented by vertical colonization events to a lesser extent. Environmental instability may be the main factor causing the high variability of diversity

  7. High variability of dung beetle diversity patterns at four mountains of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arriaga-Jiménez, Alfonsina; Rös, Matthias; Halffter, Gonzalo

    2018-01-01

    Insect diversity patterns of high mountain ecosystems remain poorly studied in the tropics. Sampling dung beetles of the subfamilies Aphodiinae, Scarabaeinae, and Geotrupinae was carried out at four volcanoes in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TMVB) in the Mexican transition zone at 2,700 and 3,400 MASL, and on the windward and leeward sides. Sampling units represented a forest-shrubland-pasture (FSP) mosaic typical of this mountain region. A total of 3,430 individuals of 29 dung beetle species were collected. Diversity, abundance and compositional similarity (CS) displayed a high variability at all scales; elevation, cardinal direction, or FSP mosaics did not show any patterns of higher or lower values of those measures. The four mountains were different regarding dispersion patterns and taxonomic groups, both for species and individuals. Onthophagus chevrolati dominated all four mountains with an overall relative abundance of 63%. CS was not related to distance among mountains, but when O. chevrolati was excluded from the analysis, CS values based on species abundance decreased with increasing distance. Speciation, dispersion, and environmental instability are suggested as the main drivers of high mountain diversity patterns, acting together at different spatial and temporal scales. Three species new to science were collected (>10% of all species sampled). These discoveries may indicate that speciation rate is high among these volcanoes-a hypothesis that is also supported by the elevated number of collected species with a restricted montane distribution. Dispersion is an important factor in driving species composition, although naturally limited between high mountains; horizontal colonization events at different time scales may best explain the observed species composition in the TMVB, complemented by vertical colonization events to a lesser extent. Environmental instability may be the main factor causing the high variability of diversity and abundance patterns

  8. High Resolution Forecasting System for Mountain area based on KLAPS-WRF

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chun, Ji Min; Rang Kim, Kyu; Lee, Seon-Yong; Kang, Wee Soo; Park, Jong Sun; Yi, Chae Yeon; Choi, Young-jean; Park, Eun Woo; Hong, Soon Sung; Jung, Hyun-Sook

    2013-04-01

    there was a significant improvement (RMSE: 2.06 ˚C -> 1.73 ˚C) in the temperature prediction in the study area. The results will provide useful guidance of grid size selection on high resolution simulation over the mountain regions in Korea.

  9. Supplemental Performance Analyses for the Potential High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sevougian, S. D.; McNeish, J. A.; Coppersmith, K.; Jenni, K. E.; Rickertsen, L. D.; Swift, P. N.; Wilson, M. L.

    2002-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is considering the possible recommendation of a site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for the potential development of a geologic repository for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel. To facilitate public review and comment, in May 2001 the DOE released the Yucca Mountain Science and Engineering Report (S and ER) (1), which presents technical information supporting the consideration of the possible site recommendation. The report summarizes the results of more than 20 years of scientific and engineering studies. Based on internal reviews of the S and ER and its key supporting references, the Total System Performance Assessment for the Site Recommendation (TSPA-SR) (2) and the Analysis Model Reports and Process Model Reports cited therein, the DOE has recently identified and performed several types of analyses to supplement the treatment of uncertainty in support of the consideration of a possible site recommendation. The results of these new analyses are summarized in the two-volume report entitled FY01 Supplemental Science and Performance Analysis (SSPA) (3,4). The information in this report is intended to supplement, not supplant, the information contained in the S and ER. The DOE recognizes that important uncertainties will always remain in any assessment of the performance of a potential repository over thousands of years (1). One part of the DOE approach to recognizing and managing these uncertainties is a commitment to continued testing and analysis and to the continued evaluation of the technical basis supporting the possible recommendation of the site, such as the analysis contained in the SSPA. The goals of the work described here are to provide insights into the implications of newly quantified uncertainties, updated science, and evaluations of lower operating temperatures on the performance of a potential Yucca Mountain repository and to increase confidence in the results of the TSPA described

  10. Fatalities in high altitude mountaineering: a review of quantitative risk estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinbruch, Stephan; Nordby, Karl-Christian

    2013-12-01

    Quantitative estimates for mortality in high altitude mountaineering are reviewed. Special emphasis is placed on the heterogeneity of the risk estimates and on confounding. Crude estimates for mortality are on the order of 1/1000 to 40/1000 persons above base camp, for both expedition members and high altitude porters. High altitude porters have mostly a lower risk than expedition members (risk ratio for all Nepalese peaks requiring an expedition permit: 0.73; 95 % confidence interval 0.59-0.89). The summit bid is generally the most dangerous part of an expedition for members, whereas most high altitude porters die during route preparation. On 8000 m peaks, the mortality during descent from summit varies between 4/1000 and 134/1000 summiteers (members plus porters). The risk estimates are confounded by human and environmental factors. Information on confounding by gender and age is contradictory and requires further work. There are indications for safety segregation of men and women, with women being more risk averse than men. Citizenship appears to be a significant confounder. Prior high altitude mountaineering experience in Nepal has no protective effect. Commercial expeditions in the Nepalese Himalayas have a lower mortality than traditional expeditions, though after controlling for confounding, the difference is not statistically significant. The overall mortality is increasing with increasing peak altitude for expedition members but not for high altitude porters. In the Nepalese Himalayas and in Alaska, a significant decrease of mortality with calendar year was observed. A few suggestions for further work are made at the end of the article.

  11. Yucca Mountain biological resources monitoring program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1993-02-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize Yucca Mountain as a potential site for a geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste. During site characterization, the DOE will conduct a variety of geotechnical, geochemical, geological, and hydrological studies to determine the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a potential repository. To ensure that site characterization activities (SCA) do not adversely affect the environment at Yucca Mountain, an environmental program has been implemented to monitor and mitigate potential impacts and ensure activities comply with applicable environmental regulations. This report describes the activities and accomplishments of EG ampersand G Energy Measurements, Inc. (EG ampersand G/EM) during fiscal year 1992 (FY92) for six program areas within the Terrestrial Ecosystem component of the YMP environmental program. The six program areas are Site Characterization Effects, Desert Tortoises, Habitat Reclamation, Monitoring and Mitigation, Radiological Monitoring, and Biological Support

  12. Yucca Mountain Biological Resources Monitoring Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-01-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize Yucca Mountain as a possible site for a geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste. During site characterization, the DOE will conduct a variety of geotechnical, geochemical, geological, and hydrological studies to determine the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a repository. To ensure that site characterization activities (SCA) do not adversely affect the Yucca Mountain area, an environmental program has been implemented to monitor and mitigate potential impacts and to ensure that activities comply with applicable environmental regulations. This report describes the activities and accomplishments during fiscal year 1991 (FY91) for six program areas within the Terrestrial Ecosystem component of the YMP environmental program. The six program areas are Site Characterization Activities Effects, Desert Tortoises, Habitat Reclamation, Monitoring and Mitigation, Radiological Monitoring, and Biological Support

  13. Yucca Mountain Biological resources monitoring program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    The US Department of Energy (US DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize Yucca Mountain as a possible site for a geological repository for high-level radioactive waste. To ensure site characterization activities do not adversely affect the Yucca Mountain area, an environmental program, the Yucca Mountain Biological Resources Monitoring Program, has been implemented monitor and mitigate environmental impacts and to ensure activities comply with applicable environmental laws. Potential impacts to vegetation, small mammals, and the desert tortoise (an indigenous threatened species) are addressed, as are habitat reclamation, radiological monitoring, and compilation of baseline data. This report describes the program in Fiscal Years 1989 and 1990. 12 refs., 4 figs., 17 tabs

  14. Populus species from diverse habitats maintain high night-time conductance under drought.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cirelli, Damián; Equiza, María Alejandra; Lieffers, Victor James; Tyree, Melvin Thomas

    2016-02-01

    We investigated the interspecific variability in nocturnal whole-plant stomatal conductance under well-watered and drought conditions in seedlings of four species of Populus from habitats characterized by abundant water supply (mesic and riparian) or from drier upland sites. The study was carried out to determine whether (i) nocturnal conductance varies across different species of Populus according to their natural habitat, (ii) nocturnal conductance is affected by water stress similarly to daytime conductance based on species habitat and (iii) differences in conductance among species could be explained partly by differences in stomatal traits. We measured whole-plant transpiration and conductance (G) of greenhouse-grown seedlings using an automated high-resolution gravimetric technique. No relationship was found between habitat preference and daytime G (GD), but night-time G (GN) was on average 1.5 times higher in riparian and mesic species (P. deltoides Bartr. ex Marsh. and P. trichocarpa Torr. & Gray) than in those from drier environments (P. tremuloides Michx. and P. × petrowskyana Schr.). GN was not significantly reduced under drought in riparian species. Upland species restricted GN significantly in response to drought, but it was still at least one order of magnitude greater that the cuticular conductance until leaf death was imminent. Under both well-watered and drought conditions, GN declined with increasing vapour pressure deficit (D). Also, a small increase in GN towards the end of the night period was observed in P. deltoides and P. × petrowskyana, suggesting the involvement of endogenous regulation. The anatomical analyses indicated a positive correlation between G and variable stomatal pore index among species and revealed that stomata are not likely to be leaky but instead seem capable of complete occlusion, which raises the question of the possible physiological role of the significant GN observed under drought. Further comparisons among

  15. Zonation of High Disaster Potential Communities for Remote Mountainous Areas in Southern Taiwan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yie-Ruey; Tsai, Kuang-Jung; Chang, Chwen-Ming; Chen, Jing-Wen; Chiang, Jie-Lun; Lu, Yi-Ching; Tsai, Hui-Wen

    2017-04-01

    About three-quarters of Taiwan are covered by hillside areas. Most of the hillside regions in Taiwan are sedimentary and metamorphic rocks which are fragile and highly weathered. In recent years, human development coupled with the global impact of extreme weather, typhoons and heavy rains have caused the landslide disasters and leaded to human causalities and properties loss. The landslides also endanger the major public works and almost make the overall industrial economic development and transport path overshadowed by disasters. Therefore, this research assesses the exploration of landslide potential analysis and zonation of high disaster potential communities for remote mountainous areas in southern Taiwan. In this study, the time series of disaster records and land change of remote mountainous areas in southern Taiwan are collected using techniques of interpretation from satellite images corresponding to multi-year and multi-rainfall events. To quantify the slope hazards, we adopt statistical analysis model to analyze massive data of slope disasters and explore the variance, difference and trend of influence factors of hillside disaster; establish the disaster potential analysis model under the climate change and construct the threshold of disaster. Through analysis results of disaster potential assessment, the settlement distribution with high-risk hazard potential of study area is drawn with geographic information system. Results of image classification show that the values of coefficient of agreement for different time periods are at high level. Compared with the historical disaster records of research areas, the accuracy of predicted landslide potential is in reasonable confidence level. The spatial distribution of landslide depends on the interaction of rainfall patterns, slope and elevation of the research area. The results also show that the number and scale of secondary landslide sites are much larger than those of new landslide sites after rainfall

  16. Deriving Animal Behaviour from High-Frequency GPS: Tracking Cows in Open and Forested Habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Weerd, Nelleke; van Langevelde, Frank; van Oeveren, Herman; Nolet, Bart A; Kölzsch, Andrea; Prins, Herbert H T; de Boer, W Fred

    2015-01-01

    The increasing spatiotemporal accuracy of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) tracking systems opens the possibility to infer animal behaviour from tracking data. We studied the relationship between high-frequency GNSS data and behaviour, aimed at developing an easily interpretable classification method to infer behaviour from location data. Behavioural observations were carried out during tracking of cows (Bos Taurus) fitted with high-frequency GPS (Global Positioning System) receivers. Data were obtained in an open field and forested area, and movement metrics were calculated for 1 min, 12 s and 2 s intervals. We observed four behaviour types (Foraging, Lying, Standing and Walking). We subsequently used Classification and Regression Trees to classify the simultaneously obtained GPS data as these behaviour types, based on distances and turning angles between fixes. GPS data with a 1 min interval from the open field was classified correctly for more than 70% of the samples. Data from the 12 s and 2 s interval could not be classified successfully, emphasizing that the interval should be long enough for the behaviour to be defined by its characteristic movement metrics. Data obtained in the forested area were classified with a lower accuracy (57%) than the data from the open field, due to a larger positional error of GPS locations and differences in behavioural performance influenced by the habitat type. This demonstrates the importance of understanding the relationship between behaviour and movement metrics, derived from GNSS fixes at different frequencies and in different habitats, in order to successfully infer behaviour. When spatially accurate location data can be obtained, behaviour can be inferred from high-frequency GNSS fixes by calculating simple movement metrics and using easily interpretable decision trees. This allows for the combined study of animal behaviour and habitat use based on location data, and might make it possible to detect deviations

  17. Deriving Animal Behaviour from High-Frequency GPS: Tracking Cows in Open and Forested Habitat.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelleke de Weerd

    Full Text Available The increasing spatiotemporal accuracy of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS tracking systems opens the possibility to infer animal behaviour from tracking data. We studied the relationship between high-frequency GNSS data and behaviour, aimed at developing an easily interpretable classification method to infer behaviour from location data. Behavioural observations were carried out during tracking of cows (Bos Taurus fitted with high-frequency GPS (Global Positioning System receivers. Data were obtained in an open field and forested area, and movement metrics were calculated for 1 min, 12 s and 2 s intervals. We observed four behaviour types (Foraging, Lying, Standing and Walking. We subsequently used Classification and Regression Trees to classify the simultaneously obtained GPS data as these behaviour types, based on distances and turning angles between fixes. GPS data with a 1 min interval from the open field was classified correctly for more than 70% of the samples. Data from the 12 s and 2 s interval could not be classified successfully, emphasizing that the interval should be long enough for the behaviour to be defined by its characteristic movement metrics. Data obtained in the forested area were classified with a lower accuracy (57% than the data from the open field, due to a larger positional error of GPS locations and differences in behavioural performance influenced by the habitat type. This demonstrates the importance of understanding the relationship between behaviour and movement metrics, derived from GNSS fixes at different frequencies and in different habitats, in order to successfully infer behaviour. When spatially accurate location data can be obtained, behaviour can be inferred from high-frequency GNSS fixes by calculating simple movement metrics and using easily interpretable decision trees. This allows for the combined study of animal behaviour and habitat use based on location data, and might make it possible to

  18. Nuclear interactions of super high energy cosmic-rays observed by mountain emulsion chambers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1981-01-01

    Here is presented a summary of joint discussions on the results of three mountain experiments with large-scale emulsion chambers, at Pamir, Mt. Fuji and Chacaltaya. The observation covers gamma-quanta, hadrons and their clusters (called ''families''). Following topics are covered concerning on characteristics of nuclear interactions in energy region of 10 14 - 10 16 eV: 1) rapid dissipation seen in atmospheric diffusion of high energy cosmic-rays, 2) multiplicity and p sub(t) increase in produced pimesons in the fragmentation region, 3) existence of large p sub(t) jets, 4) extremely-hadron-rich family of Centauro type, 5) exotic phenomena at extremely high energy region beyond 10 16 eV. (author)

  19. Rocky Mountain Riparian Digest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah M. Finch

    2008-01-01

    The Rocky Mountain Riparian Digest presents the many facets of riparian research at the station. Included are articles about protecting the riparian habitat, the social and economic values of riparian environments, watershed restoration, remote sensing tools, and getting kids interested in the science.

  20. Characterizing the proposed geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada: hydrology and geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuckless, John S.; Levich, Robert A.

    2012-01-01

    This hydrology and geochemistry volume is a companion volume to the 2007 Geological Society of America Memoir 199, The Geology and Climatology of Yucca Mountain and Vicinity, Southern Nevada and California, edited by Stuckless and Levich. The work in both volumes was originally reported in the U.S. Department of Energy regulatory document Yucca Mountain Site Description, for the site characterization study of Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as the proposed U.S. geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste. The selection of Yucca Mountain resulted from a nationwide search and numerous committee studies during a period of more than 40 yr. The waste, largely from commercial nuclear power reactors and the government's nuclear weapons programs, is characterized by intense penetrating radiation and high heat production, and, therefore, it must be isolated from the biosphere for tens of thousands of years. The extensive, unique, and often innovative geoscience investigations conducted at Yucca Mountain for more than 20 yr make it one of the most thoroughly studied geologic features on Earth. The results of these investigations contribute extensive knowledge to the hydrologic and geochemical aspects of radioactive waste disposal in the unsaturated zone. The science, analyses, and interpretations are important not only to Yucca Mountain, but also to the assessment of other sites or alternative processes that may be considered for waste disposal in the future. Groundwater conditions, processes, and geochemistry, especially in combination with the heat from radionuclide decay, are integral to the ability of a repository to isolate waste. Hydrology and geochemistry are discussed here in chapters on unsaturated zone hydrology, saturated zone hydrology, paleohydrology, hydrochemistry, radionuclide transport, and thermally driven coupled processes affecting long-term waste isolation. This introductory chapter reviews some of the reasons for choosing to study Yucca Mountain as a

  1. Characterizing the proposed geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada--hydrology and geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuckless, John S.; Levich, Robert A.

    2012-01-01

    This hydrology and geochemistry volume is a companion volume to the 2007 Geological Society of America Memoir 199, The Geology and Climatology of Yucca Mountain and Vicinity, Southern Nevada and California, edited by Stuckless and Levich. The work in both volumes was originally reported in the U.S. Department of Energy regulatory document Yucca Mountain Site Description, for the site characterization study of Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as the proposed U.S. geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste. The selection of Yucca Mountain resulted from a nationwide search and numerous committee studies during a period of more than 40 yr. The waste, largely from commercial nuclear power reactors and the government's nuclear weapons programs, is characterized by intense penetrating radiation and high heat production, and, therefore, it must be isolated from the biosphere for tens of thousands of years. The extensive, unique, and often innovative geoscience investigations conducted at Yucca Mountain for more than 20 yr make it one of the most thoroughly studied geologic features on Earth. The results of these investigations contribute extensive knowledge to the hydrologic and geochemical aspects of radioactive waste disposal in the unsaturated zone. The science, analyses, and interpretations are important not only to Yucca Mountain, but also to the assessment of other sites or alternative processes that may be considered for waste disposal in the future. Groundwater conditions, processes, and geochemistry, especially in combination with the heat from radionuclide decay, are integral to the ability of a repository to isolate waste. Hydrology and geochemistry are discussed here in chapters on unsaturated zone hydrology, saturated zone hydrology, paleohydrology, hydrochemistry, radionuclide transport, and thermally driven coupled processes affecting long-term waste isolation. This introductory chapter reviews some of the reasons for choosing to study Yucca Mountain as a

  2. High-predation habitats affect the social dynamics of collective exploration in a shoaling fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ioannou, Christos C; Ramnarine, Indar W; Torney, Colin J

    2017-05-01

    Collective decisions play a major role in the benefits that animals gain from living in groups. Although the mechanisms of how groups collectively make decisions have been extensively researched, the response of within-group dynamics to ecological conditions is virtually unknown, despite adaptation to the environment being a cornerstone in biology. We investigate how within-group interactions during exploration of a novel environment are shaped by predation, a major influence on the behavior of prey species. We tested guppies ( Poecilia reticulata ) from rivers varying in predation risk under controlled laboratory conditions and find the first evidence of differences in group interactions between animals adapted to different levels of predation. Fish from high-predation habitats showed the strongest negative relationship between initiating movements and following others, which resulted in less variability in the total number of movements made between individuals. This relationship between initiating movements and following others was associated with differentiation into initiators and followers, which was only observed in fish from high-predation rivers. The differentiation occurred rapidly, as trials lasted 5 min, and was related to shoal cohesion, where more diverse groups from high-predation habitats were more cohesive. Our results show that even within a single species over a small geographical range, decision-making in a social context can vary with local ecological factors.

  3. Ecology of Land Cover Change in Glaciated Tropical Mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth R. Young

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Tropical mountains contain unique biological diversity, and are subject to many consequences of global climate change, exasperated by concurrent socioeconomic shifts. Glaciers are in a negative mass balance, exposing substrates to primary succession and altering downslope wetlands and streams. A review of recent trends and future predictions suggests a likely reduction in areas of open habitat for species of high mountains due to greater woody plant cover, accompanied by land use shifts by farmers and pastoralists along the environmental gradients of tropical mountains. Research is needed on the biodiversity and ecosystem consequences of successional change, including the direct effects of retreating glaciers and the indirect consequences of combined social and ecological drivers in lower elevations. Areas in the high mountains that are protected for nature conservation or managed collectively by local communities represent opportunities for integrated research and development approaches that may provide ecological spaces for future species range shifts.

  4. Isotopic composition of dissolved inorganic nitrogen in high mountain lakes: variation with altitude in the Pyrenees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartrons, M.; Camarero, L.; Catalan, J.

    2010-05-01

    Nitrogen deposition in remote areas has increased, but the effect on ecosystems is still poorly understood. For aquatic systems, knowledge of the main processes driving the observed variation is limited, as is knowledge of how changes in nitrogen supply affect lake biogeochemical and food web processes. Differences in dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) between lakes cannot be understood without considering catchment characteristics. In mountains, catchment features (e.g., thermal conditions, land cover) vary considerably with elevation. The isotopic composition of nitrogen (δ15N) is increasingly used to study aquatic ecosystem dynamics. Here we explore the variability of δ15N in DIN in high mountain lakes and show that environmental conditions that change with altitude can affect the isotopic ratio. We measured ammonium and nitrate δ15N values in atmospheric deposition, epilimnetic water, deep chlorophyll maximum water (DCMW) and sediment pore water (SPW) from eight mountain lakes in the Pyrenees, both above and below the treeline. Lakes showed relatively uniform δ15N-NH4+ values in SPW (2.2±1.6‰), with no variation corresponding to catchment or lake characteristics. We suggest that organic matter diagenesis under similar sediment conditions is responsible for the low variation between the lakes. In the water column, the range of δ15N values was larger for ammonium (-9.4‰ to 7.4‰) than for nitrate (-11.4‰ to -3.4‰), as a result of higher variation both between and within lakes (epilimnetic vs. DCM water). For both compounds part of the difference correlated with altitude or catchment features (e.g., scree proportion). Based on concentration, chemical and isotopic tendencies, we suggest that patterns arise from the distinct relative contributions of two types of water flow paths to the lakes: one from snowpack melting, with little soil interaction; and another highly influenced by soil conditions. The snow-type flow path contributes low DIN

  5. Hopes and challenges for giant panda conservation under climate change in the Qinling Mountains of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Minghao; Guan, Tianpei; Hou, Meng; Liu, Gang; Zhou, Tianyuan

    2017-01-01

    One way that climate change will impact animal distributions is by altering habitat suitability and habitat fragmentation. Understanding the impacts of climate change on currently threatened species is of immediate importance because complex conservation planning will be required. Here, we mapped changes to the distribution, suitability, and fragmentation of giant panda habitat under climate change and quantified the direction and elevation of habitat shift and fragmentation patterns. These data were used to develop a series of new conservation strategies for the giant panda. Qinling Mountains, Shaanxi, China. Data from the most recent giant panda census, habitat factors, anthropogenic disturbance, climate variables, and climate predictions for the year 2050 (averaged across four general circulation models) were used to project giant panda habitat in Maxent. Differences in habitat patches were compared between now and 2050. While climate change will cause a 9.1% increase in suitable habitat and 9% reduction in subsuitable habitat by 2050, no significant net variation in the proportion of suitable and subsuitable habitat was found. However, a distinct climate change-induced habitat shift of 11 km eastward by 2050 is predicted firstly. Climate change will reduce the fragmentation of suitable habitat at high elevations and exacerbate the fragmentation of subsuitable habitat below 1,900 m above sea level. Reduced fragmentation at higher elevations and worsening fragmentation at lower elevations have the potential to cause overcrowding of giant pandas at higher altitudes, further exacerbating habitat shortage in the central Qinling Mountains. The habitat shift to the east due to climate change may provide new areas for giant pandas but poses severe challenges for future conservation.

  6. Predicting Effects of Climate Change on Habitat Suitability of Red Spruce (Picea rubens Sarg.) in the Southern Appalachian Mountains of the USA: Understanding Complex Systems Mechanisms through Modeling

    OpenAIRE

    Koo, Kyung; Patten, Bernard; Madden, Marguerite

    2015-01-01

    Alpine, subalpine and boreal tree species, of low genetic diversity and adapted to low optimal temperatures, are vulnerable to the warming effects of global climate change. The accurate prediction of these species’ distributions in response to climate change is critical for effective planning and management. The goal of this research is to predict climate change effects on the distribution of red spruce (Picea rubens Sarg.) in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP), eastern USA. Clim...

  7. Even between-lap pacing despite high within-lap variation during mountain biking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Louise; Lambeth-Mansell, Anneliese; Beretta-Azevedo, Liane; Holmes, Lucy A; Wright, Rachel; St Clair Gibson, Alan

    2012-09-01

    Given the paucity of research on pacing strategies during competitive events, this study examined changes in dynamic high-resolution performance parameters to analyze pacing profiles during a multiple-lap mountain-bike race over variable terrain. A global-positioning-system (GPS) unit (Garmin, Edge 305, USA) recorded velocity (m/s), distance (m), elevation (m), and heart rate at 1 Hz from 6 mountain-bike riders (mean±SD age=27.2±5.0 y, stature=176.8±8.1 cm, mass=76.3±11.7 kg, VO2max=55.1±6.0 mL·kg(-1)·min1) competing in a multilap race. Lap-by-lap (interlap) pacing was analyzed using a 1-way ANOVA for mean time and mean velocity. Velocity data were averaged every 100 m and plotted against race distance and elevation to observe the presence of intralap variation. There was no significant difference in lap times (P=.99) or lap velocity (P=.65) across the 5 laps. Within each lap, a high degree of oscillation in velocity was observed, which broadly reflected changes in terrain, but high-resolution data demonstrated additional nonmonotonic variation not related to terrain. Participants adopted an even pace strategy across the 5 laps despite rapid adjustments in velocity during each lap. While topographical and technical variations of the course accounted for some of the variability in velocity, the additional rapid adjustments in velocity may be associated with dynamic regulation of self-paced exercise.

  8. Spatial distribution and temporal development of high-mountain lakes in western Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkl, Sarah; Emmer, Adam; Mergili, Martin

    2015-04-01

    Glacierized high-mountain environments are characterized by active morphodynamics, favouring the rapid appearance and disappearance of lakes. On the one hand, such lakes indicate high-mountain environmental changes such as the retreat of glaciers. On the other hand, they are sometimes susceptible to sudden drainage, leading to glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) putting the downstream population at risk. Whilst high-mountain lakes have been intensively studied in the Himalayas, the Pamir, the Andes or the Western Alps, this is not the case for the Eastern Alps. A particular research gap, which is attacked with the present work, concerns the western part of Austria. We consider a study area of approx. 6,140 km², covering the central Alps over most of the province of Tyrol and part of the province of Salzburg. All lakes ≥250 m² located higher than 2000 m asl are mapped from high-resolution Google Earth imagery and orthophotos. The lakes are organized into seven classes: (i) ice-dammed; near-glacial (ii) moraine-dammed and (iii) bedrock-dammed; (iv) moraine-dammed and (v) bedrock-dammed distant to the recent glaciers; (vi) landslide-dammed; (vii) anthropogenic. The temporal development of selected lakes is investigated in detail, using aerial photographs dating back to the 1950s. 1045 lakes are identified in the study area. Only eight lakes are ice-dammed (i). One third of all lakes is located in the immediate vicinity of recent glacier tongues, half of them impounded by moraine (ii), half of them by bedrock (iii). Two thirds of all lakes are impounded by features (either moraines or bedrock) shaped by LIA or Pleistocenic glaciers at some distance to the present glacier tongues (iv and v). Only one landslide-dammed lake (vi) is identified in the study area, whilst 21 lakes are of anthropogenic origin (vii). 72% of all lakes are found at 2250-2750 m asl whilst less than 2% are found above 3000 m asl. The ratio of rock-dammed lakes increases with increasing

  9. Rates and causes of accidents for general aviation aircraft operating in a mountainous and high elevation terrain environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguiar, Marisa; Stolzer, Alan; Boyd, Douglas D

    2017-10-01

    Flying over mountainous and/or high elevation terrain is challenging due to rapidly changeable visibility, gusty/rotor winds and downdrafts and the necessity of terrain avoidance. Herein, general aviation accident rates and mishap cause/factors were determined (2001-2014) for a geographical region characterized by such terrain. Accidents in single piston engine-powered aircraft for states west of the US continental divide characterized by mountainous terrain and/or high elevation (MEHET) were identified from the NTSB database. MEHET-related-mishaps were defined as satisfying any one, or more, criteria (controlled flight into terrain/obstacles (CFIT), downdrafts, mountain obscuration, wind-shear, gusting winds, whiteout, instrument meteorological conditions; density altitude, dust-devil) cited as factors/causal in the NTSB report. Statistics employed Poisson distribution and contingency tables. Although the MEHET-related accident rate declined (pairplanes and flying under IFR to assure terrain clearance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Dataset of Passerine bird communities in a Mediterranean high mountain (Sierra Nevada, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Luque, Antonio Jesús; Barea-Azcón, José Miguel; Álvarez-Ruiz, Lola; Bonet-García, Francisco Javier; Zamora, Regino

    2016-01-01

    Abstract In this data paper, a dataset of passerine bird communities is described in Sierra Nevada, a Mediterranean high mountain located in southern Spain. The dataset includes occurrence data from bird surveys conducted in four representative ecosystem types of Sierra Nevada from 2008 to 2015. For each visit, bird species numbers as well as distance to the transect line were recorded. A total of 27847 occurrence records were compiled with accompanying measurements on distance to the transect and animal counts. All records are of species in the order Passeriformes. Records of 16 different families and 44 genera were collected. Some of the taxa in the dataset are included in the European Red List. This dataset belongs to the Sierra Nevada Global-Change Observatory (OBSNEV), a long-term research project designed to compile socio-ecological information on the major ecosystem types in order to identify the impacts of global change in this area. PMID:26865820

  11. Dataset of Passerine bird communities in a Mediterranean high mountain (Sierra Nevada, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Luque, Antonio Jesús; Barea-Azcón, José Miguel; Álvarez-Ruiz, Lola; Bonet-García, Francisco Javier; Zamora, Regino

    2016-01-01

    In this data paper, a dataset of passerine bird communities is described in Sierra Nevada, a Mediterranean high mountain located in southern Spain. The dataset includes occurrence data from bird surveys conducted in four representative ecosystem types of Sierra Nevada from 2008 to 2015. For each visit, bird species numbers as well as distance to the transect line were recorded. A total of 27847 occurrence records were compiled with accompanying measurements on distance to the transect and animal counts. All records are of species in the order Passeriformes. Records of 16 different families and 44 genera were collected. Some of the taxa in the dataset are included in the European Red List. This dataset belongs to the Sierra Nevada Global-Change Observatory (OBSNEV), a long-term research project designed to compile socio-ecological information on the major ecosystem types in order to identify the impacts of global change in this area.

  12. Natural radionuclides in rocks and soils of the high-mountain regions of the Great Caucasus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asvarova, T. A.; Abdulaeva, A. S.; Magomedov, M. A.

    2012-06-01

    The results of the radioecological survey in the high-mountain regions of the Great Caucasus at the heights from 2200 to 3800 m a.s.l. are considered. This survey encompassed the territories of Dagestan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Chechnya, Northern Ossetia-Alania, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachay-Cherkessia, and the Stavropol and Krasnodar regions. The natural γ background radiation in the studied regions is subjected to considerable fluctuations and varies from 6 to 40 μR/h. The major regularities of the migration of natural radionuclides 238U, 232Th, 226Ra, and 40K in soils in dependence on the particular environmental conditions (the initial concentration of the radionuclides in the parent material; the intensity of pedogenesis; the intensity of the vertical and horizontal migration; and the geographic, climatic, and landscape-geochemical factors) are discussed.

  13. High genetic diversity in a potentially vulnerable tropical tree species despite extreme habitat loss.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annika M E Noreen

    Full Text Available Over the last 150 years, Singapore's primary forest has been reduced to less than 0.2% of its previous area, resulting in extinctions of native flora and fauna. Remaining species may be threatened by genetic erosion and inbreeding. We surveyed >95% of the remaining primary forest in Singapore and used eight highly polymorphic microsatellite loci to assess genetic diversity indices of 179 adults (>30 cm stem diameter, 193 saplings (>1 yr, and 1,822 seedlings (<1 yr of the canopy tree Koompassia malaccensis (Fabaceae. We tested hypotheses relevant to the genetic consequences of habitat loss: (1 that the K. malaccensis population in Singapore experienced a genetic bottleneck and a reduction in effective population size, and (2 K. malaccensis recruits would exhibit genetic erosion and inbreeding compared to adults. Contrary to expectations, we detected neither a population bottleneck nor a reduction in effective population size, and high genetic diversity in all age classes. Genetic diversity indices among age classes were not significantly different: we detected overall high expected heterozygosity (He = 0.843-0.854, high allelic richness (R = 16.7-19.5, low inbreeding co-efficients (FIS = 0.013-0.076, and a large proportion (30.1% of rare alleles (i.e. frequency <1%. However, spatial genetic structure (SGS analyses showed significant differences between the adults and the recruits. We detected significantly greater SGS intensity, as well as higher relatedness in the 0-10 m distance class, for seedlings and saplings compared to the adults. Demographic factors for this population (i.e. <200 adult trees are a cause for concern, as rare alleles could be lost due to stochastic factors. The high outcrossing rate (tm = 0.961, calculated from seedlings, may be instrumental in maintaining genetic diversity and suggests that pollination by highly mobile bee species in the genus Apis may provide resilience to acute habitat loss.

  14. Elevated plasma cholecystokinin at high altitude: metabolic implications for the anorexia of acute mountain sickness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, D M; Davies, B; Milledge, J S; Richards, M; Williams, S R; Jordinson, M; Calam, J

    2000-01-01

    The aims of the present study were to measure the satiety neuropeptide cholecystokinin (CCK) in humans at terrestrial high altitude to investigate its possible role in the pathophysiology of anorexia, cachexia, and acute mountain sickness (AMS). Nineteen male mountaineers aged 38 +/- 12 years participated in a 20 +/- 5 day trek to Mt. Kanchenjunga basecamp (BC) located at 5,100 m, where they remained for 7 +/- 5 days. Subjects were examined at rest and during a maximal exercise test at sea-level before/after the expedition (SL1/SL2) and during the BC sojourn. There was a mild increase in Lake Louise AMS score from 1.1 +/- 1.2 points at SL1 to 2.3 +/- 2.3 points by the end of the first day at BC (P anorexia on Day 2 compared with those with a normal appetite. While there was no relationship between the increase in CCK and AMS score at BC, a more pronounced increase in resting CCK was observed in subjects with AMS (> or =3 points at the end of Day 1 at BC) compared with those without (+98.9 +/- 1.4 pmol/L(-1) vs. +67.6 +/- 37.2 pmol/L(-1), P < 0.05). Caloric intake remained remarkably low during the stay at BC (8.9 +/- 1.4 MJ.d(-1)) despite a progressive decrease in total body mass (-4.5 +/- 2.1 kg after 31 +/- 13 h at BC, P < 0.05 vs. SL1/SL2), which appeared to be due to a selective loss of torso adipose tissue. These findings suggest that the satiogenic effects of CCK may have contributed to the observed caloric deficit and subsequent cachexia at high altitude despite adequate availability of palatable foods. The metabolic implications of elevated CCK in AMS remain to be elucidated.

  15. Thermal modeling for a potential high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pruess, K.; Tsang, Y.

    1994-03-01

    Repository performance models based on numerical simulation of fluid and heat flows have recently been developed by several different groups. Model conceptualizations generally focus on large-scale average behavior. This comparison finds that current performance assessment (PA) models use generally similar approximations and parameters. Certain differences exist in some performance-relevant parameters, especially absolute permeabilities, characteristic curves, and thermal conductivities. These reflect present uncertainties about the most appropriate parameters applicable to Yucca Mountain and must be resolved through future field observations and laboratory measurements. For a highly heterogeneous fractured-porous hydrogeologic system such as Yucca Mountain, water infiltration through the unsaturated zone is expected to be dominated by highly localized phenomena. These include fast channelized flow along preferential paths in fractures, and frequent local ponding. The extended dry repository concept proposed by the Livermore group is reviewed. Predictions of large-scale drying around the repository on the average for large thermal loads cannot be taken to indicate that waste packages will not be contacted by liquid water, and that aqueous-phase transport of contaminants is not possible. Specifically, the authors find that modest water infiltration, on the order of a few millimeters per year, would be sufficient to overwhelm the vaporization capacity of the repository heat and inundate the waste packages within a time frame of a few thousand years. A preliminary analysis indicates that channelized flow of water may persist over large vertical distances. The vaporization-condensation cycle has a capacity for generating huge amounts of ponded water. A small fraction of the total condensate, if ponded and then episodically released, would be sufficient to cause liquid phase to make contact with the waste packages

  16. Advances in global mountain geomorphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slaymaker, Olav; Embleton-Hamann, Christine

    2018-05-01

    Three themes in global mountain geomorphology have been defined and reinforced over the past decade: (a) new ways of measuring, sensing, and analyzing mountain morphology; (b) a new emphasis on disconnectivity in mountain geomorphology; and (c) the emergence of concerns about the increasing influence of anthropogenic disturbance of the mountain geomorphic environment, especially in intertropical mountains where population densities are higher than in any other mountain region. Anthropogenically induced hydroclimate change increases geomorphic hazards and risks but also provides new opportunities for mountain landscape enhancement. Each theme is considered with respect to the distinctiveness of mountain geomorphology and in relation to important advances in research over the past decade. The traditional reliance on the high energy condition to define mountain geomorphology seems less important than the presence of unique mountain landforms and landscapes and the distinctive ways in which human activity and anthropogenically induced hydroclimate change are transforming mountain landscapes.

  17. Novel drugs in the management of acute mountain sickness and high altitude pulmonary edema

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sikri G

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Gaurav Sikri, Anirban Bhattacharya Department of Physiology, Armed Forces Medical College, Wanowarie, Pune, IndiaWe read with great interest the review article titled “Wilderness medicine at high altitude: recent developments in the field” by Shah et al.1 The authors have comprehensively summarized the recent advances in the field of high altitude medicine relevant to sports and travel medicine. However, Shah et al have described potential drugs for management of high-altitude illnesses, such as acute mountain sickness (AMS, high altitude cerebral edema, and high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE as one group under the section “Novel drug treatment for AMS”. The pathophysiologies of these two sets of diseases (AMS/high altitude cerebral edema as one and HAPE as another set are different2 and hence it would have been nice to have had the novel drugs described separately to elucidate the therapeutic approach for the two different classes of diseases.View original paper by Shah et al.

  18. Vertical structure and microphysical characteristics of precipitation on the high terrain and lee side of the Olympic Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zagrodnik, J. P.; McMurdie, L. A.; Houze, R.

    2017-12-01

    As mid-latitude cyclones pass over coastal mountain ranges, the processes producing their clouds and precipitation are modified when they encounter complex terrain, leading to a maximum in precipitation fallout on the windward slopes and a minimum on the lee side. The precipitation that does reach the high terrain and lee side of a mountain range can be theoretically determined by a complex interaction between the dynamics of air lifting over the terrain, the thermodynamics of moist air, and the microphysical time required to grow particles large enough to fall out. To date, there have been few observational studies that have focused on the nonlinear microphysical processes contributing to the variability of precipitation that is received on the lee side slopes of a mountain range such as the Olympic Mountains. The 2015-16 Olympic Mountains Experiment (OLYMPEX) collected unprecedented observations on the high terrain and lee side of the Olympic Mountains including frequent soundings on Vancouver Island, dual-polarization Doppler radar, multi-frequency airborne radar, and ground-based particle size and crystal habit observations at the higher elevation Hurricane Ridge site. We utilize these observations to examine the evolution of the vertical structure and microphysical precipitation characteristics over the high terrain and leeside within the context of large-scale dynamic and thermodynamic conditions that evolve during the passage of cold season mid-latitude cyclones. The primary goal is to determine the degree to which the observed variability in lee side precipitation amount and microphysical properties are controlled by variations in temperature, flow speed and direction, shear, and stability associated with characteristic synoptic storm sectors and frontal passages.

  19. Interpreting landscape change in high mountains of northeastern Oregon from long-term repeat photography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jon M. Skovlin; Gerald S. Strickler; Jesse L. Peterson; Arthur W. Sampson

    2001-01-01

    We compared 45 photographs taken before 1925 to photographs taken as late as 1999 and documented landscape changes above 5,000 feet elevation in the Wallowa, Elkhorn, and Greenhorn Mountains of northeastern Oregon. We noted the following major changes from these comparisons: (1) the expansion of subalpine fir into mountain grasslands, (2) the invasion of moist and wet...

  20. Noninvasive Assessment of Excessive Erythrocytosis as a Screening Method for Chronic Mountain Sickness at High Altitude.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vyas, Kaetan J; Danz, David; Gilman, Robert H; Wise, Robert A; León-Velarde, Fabiola; Miranda, J Jaime; Checkley, William

    2015-06-01

    Vyas, Kaetan J., David Danz, Robert H. Gilman, Robert A. Wise, Fabiola León-Velarde, J. Jaime Miranda, and William Checkley. Noninvasive assessment of excessive erythrocytosis as a screening method for chronic mountain sickness at high altitude. High Alt Med Biol 16:162-168, 2015.--Globally, over 140 million people are at risk of developing chronic mountain sickness, a common maladaptation to life at high altitude (>2500 meters above sea level). The diagnosis is contingent upon the identification of excessive erythrocytosis (EE). Current best practices to identify EE require a venous blood draw, which is cumbersome for large-scale surveillance. We evaluated two point-of-care biomarkers to screen for EE: noninvasive spot-check tests of total hemoglobin and oxyhemoglobin saturation (Pronto-7, Masimo Corporation). We conducted paired evaluations of total serum hemoglobin from a venous blood draw and noninvasive, spot-check testing of total hemoglobin and oxyhemoglobin saturation with the Pronto-7 in 382 adults aged ≥35 years living in Puno, Peru (3825 meters above sea level). We used the Bland-Altman method to measure agreement between the noninvasive hemoglobin assessment and the gold standard lab hemoglobin analyzer. Mean age was 58.8 years and 47% were male. The Pronto-7 test was unsuccessful in 21 (5%) participants. Limits of agreement between total hemoglobin measured via venous blood draw and the noninvasive, spot-check test ranged from -2.8 g/dL (95% CI -3.0 to -2.5) to 2.5 g/dL (95% CI 2.2 to 2.7), with a bias of -0.2 g/dL (95% CI -0.3 to -0.02) for the difference between total hemoglobin and noninvasive hemoglobin concentrations. Overall, the noninvasive spot-check test of total hemoglobin had a better area under the receiver operating characteristic curve compared to oxyhemoglobin saturation for the identification of EE as measured by a gold standard laboratory hemoglobin analyzer (0.96 vs. 0.82; p<0.001). Best cut-off values to screen for EE with

  1. Tracking channel bed resiliency in forested mountain catchments using high temporal resolution channel bed movement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Sarah E.; Conklin, Martha H.

    2018-01-01

    This study uses continuous-recording load cell pressure sensors in four, high-elevation (1500-1800 m), Sierra Nevada headwater streams to collect high-temporal-resolution, bedload-movement data for investigating the channel bed movement patterns within these streams for water years 2012-2014. Data show an annual pattern where channel bed material in the thalweg starts to build up in early fall, peaks around peak snow melt, and scours back to baseline levels during hydrograph drawdown and base flow. This pattern is punctuated by disturbance and recovery of channel bed material associated with short-term storm events. A conceptual model, linking sediment sources at the channel margins to patterns of channel bed fill and scour in the thalweg, is proposed building on the results of Martin et al. (2014). The material in the thalweg represents a balance between sediment supply from the channel margins and sporadic, conveyor-belt-like downstream transport in the thalweg. The conceptual model highlights not only the importance of production and transport rates but also that seasonal connectedness between the margins and thalweg is a key sediment control, determining the accumulation rate of sediment stores at the margins and the redistribution of sediment from margins to thalweg that feeds the conveyor belt. Disturbance and recovery cycles are observed at multiple temporal scales; but long term, the channel beds are stable, suggesting that the beds act as short-term storage for sediment but are in equilibrium interannually. The feasibility of use for these sensors in forested mountain stream environments is tested. Despite a high failure rate (50%), load cell pressure sensors show potential for high-temporal-resolution bedload measurements, allowing for the collection of channel bed movement data to move beyond time-integrated change measurements - where many of the subtleties of bedload movement patterns may be missed - to continuous and/or real-time measurements. This

  2. Modelling magma-drift interaction at the proposed high-level radioactive waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, USA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woods, Andrew W.; Sparks, Steve; Bokhove, Onno; Lejeune, Anne-Marie; Connor, Charles B.; Hill, Britain E.

    2002-01-01

    We examine the possible ascent of alkali basalt magma containing 2 wt percent water through a dike and into a horizontal subsurface drift as part of a risk assessment for the proposed high-level radioactive waste repository beneath Yucca Mountain, Nevada, USA. On intersection of the dike with the

  3. REGIONAL ANALYSIS OF INORGANIC NITROGEN YIELD AND RETENTION IN HIGH-ELEVATION ECOSYSTEMS OF THE SIERRA NEVADA AND ROCKY MOUNTAINS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yields and retention of inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and nitrate concentrations in surface runoff are summarized for 28 high elevation watersheds in the Sierra Nevada, California and Rocky Mountains of Wyoming and Colorado. Catchments ranged in elevation from 2475 to 3603 m and from...

  4. Increased site fertility and litter decomposition rate in high-pollution sites in the San Bernardino Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark E. Fenn

    1991-01-01

    Some possible factors causing enhanced litter decomposition in high-pollution sites in the San Bernardino Mountains of southern California were investigated. Nitrogen concentration of soil, as well as foliage and litter of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Laws.) and Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi Grev. & Balf.) were greater in...

  5. Bacterioplankton community composition along a salinity gradient of sixteen high-mountain lakes located on the Tibetan Plateau, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wu, Q.L.; Zwart, G.; Schauer, M.; Kamst-van Agterveld, M.P.; Hahn, M.W.

    2006-01-01

    The influence of altitude and salinity on bacterioplankton community composition (BCC) in 16 high-mountain lakes located at altitudes of 2,817 to 5,134 m on the Eastern Qinghai-Xizang (Tibetan) Plateau, China, spanning a salinity gradient from 0.02% (freshwater) to 22.3% (hypersaline), was

  6. Escaping to the summits: phylogeography and predicted range dynamics of Cerastium dinaricum, an endangered high mountain plant endemic to the western Balkan Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutnjak, Denis; Kuttner, Michael; Niketić, Marjan; Dullinger, Stefan; Schönswetter, Peter; Frajman, Božo

    2014-09-01

    The Balkans are a major European biodiversity hotspot, however, almost nothing is known about processes of intraspecific diversification of the region's high-altitude biota and their reaction to the predicted global warming. To fill this gap, genome size measurements, AFLP fingerprints, plastid and nuclear sequences were employed to explore the phylogeography of Cerastium dinaricum. Range size changes under future climatic conditions were predicted by niche-based modeling. Likely the most cold-adapted plant endemic to the Dinaric Mountains in the western Balkan Peninsula, the species has conservation priority in the European Union as its highly fragmented distribution range includes only few small populations. A deep phylogeographic split paralleled by divergent genome size separates the populations into two vicariant groups. Substructure is pronounced within the southeastern group, corresponding to the area's higher geographic complexity. Cerastium dinaricum likely responded to past climatic oscillations with altitudinal range shifts, which, coupled with high topographic complexity of the region and warmer climate in the Holocene, sculptured its present fragmented distribution. Field observations revealed that the species is rarer than previously assumed and, as shown by modeling, severely endangered by global warming as viable habitat was predicted to be reduced by more than 70% by the year 2080. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Cost estimate of high-level radioactive waste containers for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Russell, E.W.; Clarke, W. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (United States); Domian, H.A. [Babcock and Wilcox Co., Lynchburg, VA (United States); Madson, A.A. [Kaiser Engineers California Corp., Oakland, CA (United States)

    1991-08-01

    This report summarizes the bottoms-up cost estimates for fabrication of high-level radioactive waste disposal containers based on the Site Characterization Plan Conceptual Design (SCP-CD). These estimates were acquired by Babcock and Wilcox (B&S) under sub-contract to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project (YMP). The estimates were obtained for two leading container candidate materials (Alloy 825 and CDA 715), and from other three vendors who were selected from a list of twenty solicited. Three types of container designs were analyzed that represent containers for spent fuel, and for vitrified high-level waste (HLW). The container internal structures were assumed to be AISI-304 stainless steel in all cases, with an annual production rate of 750 containers. Subjective techniques were used for estimating QA/QC costs based on vendor experience and the specifications derived for the LLNL-YMP Quality Assurance program. In addition, an independent QA/QC analysis is reported which was prepared by Kasier Engineering. Based on the cost estimates developed, LLNL recommends that values of $825K and $62K be used for the 1991 TSLCC for the spent fuel and HLW containers, respectively. These numbers represent the most conservative among the three vendors, and are for the high-nickel anstenitic steel (Alloy 825). 6 refs., 7 figs.

  8. Cost estimate of high-level radioactive waste containers for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Russell, E.W.; Clarke, W.; Domian, H.A.; Madson, A.A.

    1991-08-01

    This report summarizes the bottoms-up cost estimates for fabrication of high-level radioactive waste disposal containers based on the Site Characterization Plan Conceptual Design (SCP-CD). These estimates were acquired by Babcock and Wilcox (B ampersand S) under sub-contract to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project (YMP). The estimates were obtained for two leading container candidate materials (Alloy 825 and CDA 715), and from other three vendors who were selected from a list of twenty solicited. Three types of container designs were analyzed that represent containers for spent fuel, and for vitrified high-level waste (HLW). The container internal structures were assumed to be AISI-304 stainless steel in all cases, with an annual production rate of 750 containers. Subjective techniques were used for estimating QA/QC costs based on vendor experience and the specifications derived for the LLNL-YMP Quality Assurance program. In addition, an independent QA/QC analysis is reported which was prepared by Kasier Engineering. Based on the cost estimates developed, LLNL recommends that values of $825K and $62K be used for the 1991 TSLCC for the spent fuel and HLW containers, respectively. These numbers represent the most conservative among the three vendors, and are for the high-nickel anstenitic steel (Alloy 825). 6 refs., 7 figs

  9. Long-term shifts in the phenology of rare and endemic Rocky Mountain plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munson, Seth M; Sher, Anna A

    2015-08-01

    Mountainous regions support high plant productivity, diversity, and endemism, yet are highly vulnerable to climate change. Historical records and model predictions show increasing temperatures across high elevation regions including the Southern Rocky Mountains, which can have a strong influence on the performance and distribution of montane plant species. Rare plant species can be particularly vulnerable to climate change because of their limited abundance and distribution.• We tracked the phenology of rare and endemic species, which are identified as imperiled, across three different habitat types with herbarium records to determine if flowering time has changed over the last century, and if phenological change was related to shifts in climate.• We found that the flowering date of rare species has accelerated 3.1 d every decade (42 d total) since the late 1800s, with plants in sagebrush interbasins showing the strongest accelerations in phenology. High winter temperatures were associated with the acceleration of phenology in low elevation sagebrush and barren river habitats, whereas high spring temperatures explained accelerated phenology in the high elevation alpine habitat. In contrast, high spring temperatures delayed the phenology of plant species in the two low-elevation habitats and precipitation had mixed effects depending on the season.• These results provide evidence for large shifts in the phenology of rare Rocky Mountain plants related to climate, which can have strong effects on plant fitness, the abundance of associated wildlife, and the future of plant conservation in mountainous regions. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  10. Denitrification and Biodiversity of Denitrifiers in a High-Mountain Mediterranean Lake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Castellano-Hinojosa

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Wet deposition of reactive nitrogen (Nr species is considered a main factor contributing to N inputs, of which nitrate (NO3− is usually the major component in high-mountain lakes. The microbial group of denitrifiers are largely responsible for reduction of nitrate to molecular dinitrogen (N2 in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, but the role of denitrification in removal of contaminant nitrates in high-mountain lakes is not well understood. We have used the oligotrophic, high-altitude La Caldera lake in the Sierra Nevada range (Spain as a model to study the role of denitrification in nitrate removal. Dissolved inorganic Nr concentration in the water column of la Caldera, mainly nitrate, decreased over the ice-free season which was not associated with growth of microbial plankton or variations in the ultraviolet radiation. Denitrification activity, estimated as nitrous oxide (N2O production, was measured in the water column and in sediments of the lake, and had maximal values in the month of August. Relative abundance of denitrifying bacteria in sediments was studied by quantitative polymerase chain reaction of the 16S rRNA and the two phylogenetically distinct clades nosZI and nosZII genes encoding nitrous oxide reductases. Diversity of denitrifiers in sediments was assessed using a culture-dependent approach and after the construction of clone libraries employing the nosZI gene as a molecular marker. In addition to genera Polymorphum, Paracoccus, Azospirillum, Pseudomonas, Hyphomicrobium, Thauera, and Methylophaga, which were present in the clone libraries, Arthrobacter, Burkholderia, and Rhizobium were also detected in culture media that were not found in the clone libraries. Analysis of biological activities involved in the C, N, P, and S cycles from sediments revealed that nitrate was not a limiting nutrient in the lake, allowed N2O production and determined denitrifiers’ community structure. All these results indicate that

  11. Denitrification and Biodiversity of Denitrifiers in a High-Mountain Mediterranean Lake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellano-Hinojosa, Antonio; Correa-Galeote, David; Carrillo, Presentación; Bedmar, Eulogio J.; Medina-Sánchez, Juan M.

    2017-01-01

    Wet deposition of reactive nitrogen (Nr) species is considered a main factor contributing to N inputs, of which nitrate (NO3−) is usually the major component in high-mountain lakes. The microbial group of denitrifiers are largely responsible for reduction of nitrate to molecular dinitrogen (N2) in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, but the role of denitrification in removal of contaminant nitrates in high-mountain lakes is not well understood. We have used the oligotrophic, high-altitude La Caldera lake in the Sierra Nevada range (Spain) as a model to study the role of denitrification in nitrate removal. Dissolved inorganic Nr concentration in the water column of la Caldera, mainly nitrate, decreased over the ice-free season which was not associated with growth of microbial plankton or variations in the ultraviolet radiation. Denitrification activity, estimated as nitrous oxide (N2O) production, was measured in the water column and in sediments of the lake, and had maximal values in the month of August. Relative abundance of denitrifying bacteria in sediments was studied by quantitative polymerase chain reaction of the 16S rRNA and the two phylogenetically distinct clades nosZI and nosZII genes encoding nitrous oxide reductases. Diversity of denitrifiers in sediments was assessed using a culture-dependent approach and after the construction of clone libraries employing the nosZI gene as a molecular marker. In addition to genera Polymorphum, Paracoccus, Azospirillum, Pseudomonas, Hyphomicrobium, Thauera, and Methylophaga, which were present in the clone libraries, Arthrobacter, Burkholderia, and Rhizobium were also detected in culture media that were not found in the clone libraries. Analysis of biological activities involved in the C, N, P, and S cycles from sediments revealed that nitrate was not a limiting nutrient in the lake, allowed N2O production and determined denitrifiers’ community structure. All these results indicate that denitrification could be a

  12. Isotopic composition of dissolved inorganic nitrogen in high mountain lakes: variation with altitude in the Pyrenees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Bartrons

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Nitrogen deposition in remote areas has increased, but the effect on ecosystems is still poorly understood. For aquatic systems, knowledge of the main processes driving the observed variation is limited, as is knowledge of how changes in nitrogen supply affect lake biogeochemical and food web processes. Differences in dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN between lakes cannot be understood without considering catchment characteristics. In mountains, catchment features (e.g., thermal conditions, land cover vary considerably with elevation. The isotopic composition of nitrogen (δ15N is increasingly used to study aquatic ecosystem dynamics. Here we explore the variability of δ15N in DIN in high mountain lakes and show that environmental conditions that change with altitude can affect the isotopic ratio.

    We measured ammonium and nitrate δ15N values in atmospheric deposition, epilimnetic water, deep chlorophyll maximum water (DCMW and sediment pore water (SPW from eight mountain lakes in the Pyrenees, both above and below the treeline. Lakes showed relatively uniform δ15N-NH4+ values in SPW (2.2±1.6‰, with no variation corresponding to catchment or lake characteristics. We suggest that organic matter diagenesis under similar sediment conditions is responsible for the low variation between the lakes.

    In the water column, the range of δ15N values was larger for ammonium (−9.4‰ to 7.4‰ than for nitrate (−11.4‰ to −3.4‰, as a result of higher variation both between and within lakes (epilimnetic vs. DCM water. For both compounds part of the difference correlated with altitude or catchment features (e.g., scree proportion. Based on concentration, chemical and isotopic tendencies, we suggest that patterns arise from the distinct relative contributions of two types of water flow paths to the lakes: one from snowpack melting, with little soil

  13. [Limnology of high mountain tropical lake, in Ecuador: characteristics of sediments and rate of sedimentation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunkel, Günter

    2003-06-01

    Equatorial high mountain lakes are a special type of lake occurring mainly in the South American Andes as well as in Central Africa and Asia. They occur at altitudes of a few thousand meters above sea level and are cold-water lakes (limnological study was therefore undertaken at Lake San Pablo, Ecuador, to analyze the basic limnological processes of the lake, which has a tendency for eutrophication. Sediment quality of San Pablo Lake is given under consideration of horizontal and vertical distribution using sediment cores. Significance of sediments for eutrophication process of lakes is demonstrated using phosphorus concentration of sediments as well as the phosphorus retention capacity of the sediments by ratio Fe/P. Dating of the sediments is done using 137Cs and 210Pb, but the activity of 137Cs in the sediment was very low nearly at the detection level. Sedimentation rate is determined to be 3.5 mm/year and the sediment cores represent about 110 years. P concentration of the sediments is high (approximately 5 g/kg dry substance), and P retention capacity by Fe is insufficient (Fe/P = 4). The sediment quality did not change significantly during the past decades, and the trophic state of San Pablo Lake was already less or more eutrophic 110 years ago. The contamination of the lake sediments by heavy metals is insignificant.

  14. Development of hydrological models and surface process modelization Study case in High Mountain slopes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loaiza, Juan Carlos; Pauwels, Valentijn R

    2011-01-01

    Hydrological models are useful because allow to predict fluxes into the hydrological systems, which is useful to predict foods and violent phenomenon associated to water fluxes, especially in materials under a high meteorization level. The combination of these models with meteorological predictions, especially with rainfall models, allow to model water behavior into the soil. On most of cases, this type of models is really sensible to evapotranspiration. On climatic studies, the superficial processes have to be represented adequately. Calibration and validation of these models is necessary to obtain reliable results. This paper is a practical exercise of application of complete hydrological information at detailed scale in a high mountain catchment, considering the soil use and types more representatives. The information of soil moisture, infiltration, runoff and rainfall is used to calibrate and validate TOPLATS hydrological model to simulate the behavior of soil moisture. The finds show that is possible to implement an hydrological model by means of soil moisture information use and an equation of calibration by Extended Kalman Filter (EKF).

  15. Ukpik: testbed for a miniaturized robotic astronomical observatory on a high Arctic mountain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbring, Eric; Leckie, Brian; Hardy, Tim; Caputa, Kris; Fletcher, Murray

    2012-09-01

    Mountains along the northwestern coast of Ellesmere Island, Canada, possess the highest peaks nearest the Pole. This geography, combined with an atmospheric thermal inversion restricted to below ~1000 m during much of the long arctic night, provides excellent opportunities for uninterrupted cloud-free astronomy - provided the challenges of these incredibly remote locations can be overcome. We present a miniaturized robotic observatory for deployment on a High Arctic mountaintop. This system tested the operability of precise optical instruments during winter, and the logistics of installation and maintenance during summer. It is called Ukpik after the Inuktitut name for the snowy owl, and was deployed at two sites accessible only by helicopter, each north of 82 degrees latitude; one on rock at 1100 m elevation and another on a glacier at 1600 m. The instrument suite included at first an all-sky-viewing camera, with the later addition of a small telescope to monitor Polaris, both protected by a retractable weather-proof enclosure. Expanding this to include a narrow-field drift-scanning camera for studying extra-solar planet transits was also investigated, but not implemented. An unique restriction was that all had to be run on batteries recharged primarily by a wind turbine. Supplementary power came from a methanol fuel-cell electrical generator. Communications were via the Iridium satellite network. The system design, and lessons learned from three years of operation are discussed, along with prospects for time-domain astronomy from isolated, high-elevation polar mountaintops.

  16. Genetic connectivity of the moth pollinated tree Glionnetia sericea in a highly fragmented habitat.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aline Finger

    Full Text Available Long-distance gene flow is thought to be one prerequisite for the persistence of plant species in fragmented environments. Human influences have led to severe fragmentation of native habitats in the Seychelles islands, with many species surviving only in small and isolated populations. The endangered Seychelles endemic tree Glionnetia sericea is restricted to altitudes between 450 m and 900 m where the native forest vegetation has been largely lost and replaced with exotic invasives over the last 200 years. This study explores the genetic and ecological consequences of population fragmentation in this species by analysing patterns of genetic diversity in a sample of adults, juveniles and seeds, and by using controlled pollination experiments. Our results show no decrease in genetic diversity and no increase in genetic structuring from adult to juvenile cohorts. Despite significant inbreeding in some populations, there is no evidence of higher inbreeding in juvenile cohorts relative to adults. A Bayesian structure analysis and a tentative paternity analysis indicate extensive historical and contemporary gene flow among remnant populations. Pollination experiments and a paternity analysis show that Glionnetia sericea is self-compatible. Nevertheless, outcrossing is present with 7% of mating events resulting from pollen transfer between populations. Artificial pollination provided no evidence for pollen limitation in isolated populations. The highly mobile and specialized hawkmoth pollinators (Agrius convolvuli and Cenophodes tamsi; Sphingidae appear to promote extensive gene flow, thus mitigating the potential negative ecological and genetic effects of habitat fragmentation in this species. We conclude that contemporary gene flow is sufficient to maintain genetic connectivity in this rare and restricted Seychelles endemic, in contrast to other island endemic tree species with limited contemporary gene flow.

  17. Genetic connectivity of the moth pollinated tree Glionnetia sericea in a highly fragmented habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finger, Aline; Kaiser-Bunbury, Christopher N; Kettle, Chris J; Valentin, Terence; Ghazoul, Jaboury

    2014-01-01

    Long-distance gene flow is thought to be one prerequisite for the persistence of plant species in fragmented environments. Human influences have led to severe fragmentation of native habitats in the Seychelles islands, with many species surviving only in small and isolated populations. The endangered Seychelles endemic tree Glionnetia sericea is restricted to altitudes between 450 m and 900 m where the native forest vegetation has been largely lost and replaced with exotic invasives over the last 200 years. This study explores the genetic and ecological consequences of population fragmentation in this species by analysing patterns of genetic diversity in a sample of adults, juveniles and seeds, and by using controlled pollination experiments. Our results show no decrease in genetic diversity and no increase in genetic structuring from adult to juvenile cohorts. Despite significant inbreeding in some populations, there is no evidence of higher inbreeding in juvenile cohorts relative to adults. A Bayesian structure analysis and a tentative paternity analysis indicate extensive historical and contemporary gene flow among remnant populations. Pollination experiments and a paternity analysis show that Glionnetia sericea is self-compatible. Nevertheless, outcrossing is present with 7% of mating events resulting from pollen transfer between populations. Artificial pollination provided no evidence for pollen limitation in isolated populations. The highly mobile and specialized hawkmoth pollinators (Agrius convolvuli and Cenophodes tamsi; Sphingidae) appear to promote extensive gene flow, thus mitigating the potential negative ecological and genetic effects of habitat fragmentation in this species. We conclude that contemporary gene flow is sufficient to maintain genetic connectivity in this rare and restricted Seychelles endemic, in contrast to other island endemic tree species with limited contemporary gene flow.

  18. Can Static Habitat Protection Encompass Critical Areas for Highly Mobile Marine Top Predators? Insights from Coastal East Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergi Pérez-Jorge

    Full Text Available Along the East African coast, marine top predators are facing an increasing number of anthropogenic threats which requires the implementation of effective and urgent conservation measures to protect essential habitats. Understanding the role that habitat features play on the marine top predator' distribution and abundance is a crucial step to evaluate the suitability of an existing Marine Protected Area (MPA, originally designated for the protection of coral reefs. We developed species distribution models (SDM on the IUCN data deficient Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus in southern Kenya. We followed a comprehensive ecological modelling approach to study the environmental factors influencing the occurrence and abundance of dolphins while developing SDMs. Through the combination of ensemble prediction maps, we defined recurrent, occasional and unfavourable habitats for the species. Our results showed the influence of dynamic and static predictors on the dolphins' spatial ecology: dolphins may select shallow areas (5-30 m, close to the reefs (< 500 m and oceanic fronts (< 10 km and adjacent to the 100 m isobath (< 5 km. We also predicted a significantly higher occurrence and abundance of dolphins within the MPA. Recurrent and occasional habitats were identified on large percentages on the existing MPA (47% and 57% using presence-absence and abundance models respectively. However, the MPA does not adequately encompass all occasional and recurrent areas and within this context, we propose to extend the MPA to incorporate all of them which are likely key habitats for the highly mobile species. The results from this study provide two key conservation and management tools: (i an integrative habitat modelling approach to predict key marine habitats, and (ii the first study evaluating the effectiveness of an existing MPA for marine mammals in the Western Indian Ocean.

  19. Glacier evolution in high-mountain Asia under stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection geoengineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Zhao

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Geoengineering by stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection may help preserve mountain glaciers by reducing summer temperatures. We examine this hypothesis for the glaciers in high-mountain Asia using a glacier mass balance model driven by climate simulations from the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP. The G3 and G4 schemes specify use of stratospheric sulfate aerosols to reduce the radiative forcing under the Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP 4.5 scenario for the 50 years between 2020 and 2069, and for a further 20 years after termination of geoengineering. We estimate and compare glacier volume loss for every glacier in the region using a glacier model based on surface mass balance parameterization under climate projections from three Earth system models under G3, five models under G4, and six models under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. The ensemble projections suggest that glacier shrinkage over the period 2010–2069 is equivalent to sea-level rise of 9.0 ± 1.6 mm (G3, 9.8 ± 4.3 mm (G4, 15.5 ± 2.3 mm (RCP4.5, and 18.5 ± 1.7 mm (RCP8.5. Although G3 keeps the average temperature from increasing in the geoengineering period, G3 only slows glacier shrinkage by about 50 % relative to losses from RCP8.5. Approximately 72 % of glaciated area remains at 2069 under G3, as compared with about 30 % for RCP8.5. The widely reported reduction in mean precipitation expected for solar geoengineering is unlikely to be as important as the temperature-driven shift from solid to liquid precipitation for forcing Himalayan glacier change. The termination of geoengineering at 2069 under G3 leads to temperature rise of about 1.3 °C over the period 2070–2089 relative to the period 2050-2069 and corresponding increase in annual mean glacier volume loss rate from 0.17 to 1.1 % yr−1, which is higher than the 0.66 % yr−1 under RCP8.5 during 2070–2089.

  20. SCaMF–RM: A Fused High-Resolution Land Cover Product of the Rocky Mountains

    KAUST Repository

    Rodríguez-Jeangros, Nicolás

    2017-10-02

    Land cover (LC) products, derived primarily from satellite spectral imagery, are essential inputs for environmental studies because LC is a critical driver of processes involved in hydrology, ecology, and climatology, among others. However, existing LC products each have different temporal and spatial resolutions and different LC classes that rarely provide the detail required by these studies. Using multiple existing LC products, we implement our Spatiotemporal Categorical Map Fusion (SCaMF) methodology over a large region of the Rocky Mountains (RM), encompassing sections of six states, to create a new LC product, SCaMF–RM. To do this, we must adapt SCaMF to address the prediction of LC in large space–time regions that present nonstationarities, and we add more flexibility in the LC classifications of the predicted product. SCaMF–RM is produced at two high spatial resolutions, 30 and 50 m, and a yearly frequency for the 30-year period 1983–2012. When multiple products are available in time, we illustrate how SCaMF–RM captures relevant information from the different LC products and improves upon flaws observed in other products. Future work needed includes an exhaustive validation not only of SCaMF–RM but also of all input LC products.

  1. TECHNICAL ASPECTS RELATED TO THE APPLICATION OF SFM PHOTOGRAMMETRY IN HIGH MOUNTAIN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Scaioni

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Structure-from-Motion (SfM photogrammetry is a flexible and powerful tool to provide 3D point clouds describing the surface of objects. Due to the easy transportability and low-cost of necessary equipment with respect to laser scanning techniques, SfM photogrammetry has great potential to be applied in harsh high-mountain environment. Here point clouds and derived by-products (DEM’s, orthoimages, Virtual-Reality models are needed to document surface morphology and to investigate dynamic processes such as landslides, avalanches, river and soil erosion, glacier retreat. On the other hand, from both the literature and the direct experience of the authors, there are some technical issues that still deserve thorough investigations. The paper would like to address some open problems and suggest solutions, in particular on regards of the photogrammetric network design, the strategy for georeferencing the final products, and for their comparison within time. The discussion is documented with some examples, mainly from surveying campaigns at the Forni Glacier in Italian Alps.

  2. Disruption scenarios for a high-level waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ross, B.

    1986-01-01

    A high-level waste repository located in unsaturated welded tuff at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, would rely on six different, although not entirely independent, barriers to prevent escape of radioactivity. These barriers are the waste canister, fuel cladding, slow dissolution of the spent fuel itself, and slow movement of released contaminants in three different hydrogeologic units: the unsaturated Topopah Spring welded tuff unit, the unsaturated Calico Hills nonwelded tuff unit, and the saturated tuff aquifer. Fifty-eight processes and events that might affect such a repository were reviewed. Eighty-three different sequences were identified by which these processes and events could lead to failure of one or more barriers. Sequences which had similar consequences were grouped, yielding 17 categories. The repository system has considerable redundancy; most of the more likely disruptions affect only one or a few barriers. Occurrence of more than one disruption is needed before such disruptions would cause release of radioactivity. Future studies of repository performance must assess the likelihood and consequences of multiple-disruption scenarios to evaluate how well the repository meets performance standards

  3. Elk habitat suitability map for North Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Steven G.; Cobb, David T.; Collazo, Jaime A.

    2015-01-01

    Although eastern elk (Cervus elaphus canadensis) were extirpated from the eastern United States in the 19th century, they were successfully reintroduced in the North Carolina portion of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the early 2000s. The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (NCWRC) is evaluating the prospect of reintroducing the species in other locations in the state to augment recreational opportunities. As a first step in the process, we created a state-wide elk habitat suitability map. We used medium-scale data sets and a two-component approach to iden- tify areas of high biological value for elk and exclude from consideration areas where elk-human conflicts were more likely. Habitats in the state were categorized as 66% unsuitable, 16.7% low, 17% medium, and <1% high suitability for elk. The coastal plain and Piedmont contained the most suitable habitat, but prospective reintroduction sites were largely excluded from consideration due to extensive agricultural activities and pervasiveness of secondary roads. We ranked 31 areas (≥ 500 km2) based on their suitability for reintroduction. The central region of the state contained the top five ranked areas. The Blue Ridge Mountains, where the extant population of elk occurs, was ranked 21st. Our work provides a benchmark for decision makers to evaluate potential consequences and trade-offs associated with the selection of prospective elk reintroduction sites.

  4. NASA's High Mountain Asia Team (HiMAT): collaborative research to study changes of the High Asia region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arendt, A. A.; Houser, P.; Kapnick, S. B.; Kargel, J. S.; Kirschbaum, D.; Kumar, S.; Margulis, S. A.; McDonald, K. C.; Osmanoglu, B.; Painter, T. H.; Raup, B. H.; Rupper, S.; Tsay, S. C.; Velicogna, I.

    2017-12-01

    The High Mountain Asia Team (HiMAT) is an assembly of 13 research groups funded by NASA to improve understanding of cryospheric and hydrological changes in High Mountain Asia (HMA). Our project goals are to quantify historical and future variability in weather and climate over the HMA, partition the components of the water budget across HMA watersheds, explore physical processes driving changes, and predict couplings and feedbacks between physical and human systems through assessment of hazards and downstream impacts. These objectives are being addressed through analysis of remote sensing datasets combined with modeling and assimilation methods to enable data integration across multiple spatial and temporal scales. Our work to date has focused on developing improved high resolution precipitation, snow cover and snow water equivalence products through a variety of statistical uncertainty analysis, dynamical downscaling and assimilation techniques. These and other high resolution climate products are being used as input and validation for an assembly of land surface and General Circulation Models. To quantify glacier change in the region we have calculated multidecadal mass balances of a subset of HMA glaciers by comparing commercial satellite imagery with earlier elevation datasets. HiMAT is using these tools and datasets to explore the impact of atmospheric aerosols and surface impurities on surface energy exchanges, to determine drivers of glacier and snowpack melt rates, and to improve our capacity to predict future hydrological variability. Outputs from the climate and land surface assessments are being combined with landslide and glacier lake inventories to refine our ability to predict hazards in the region. Economic valuation models are also being used to assess impacts on water resources and hydropower. Field data of atmospheric aerosol, radiative flux and glacier lake conditions are being collected to provide ground validation for models and remote sensing

  5. Mountain birdwatch: developing a coordinated monitoring program for high-elevation birds in the Atlantic northern forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    John D. Lloyd; Julie Hart; J. Dan Lambert

    2010-01-01

    Birds occupying high-elevation forests in the northeast are perceived to be at risk from a variety of external forces, most notably the potential loss and alteration of habitat associated with global climate change and the increased deployment of wind-energy facilities. However, the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS), a standardized national monitoring scheme widely used to...

  6. Riparian Songbird Abundance a Decade after Cattle Removal on Hart Mountain and Sheldon National Wildlife Refuges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susan L. Earnst; Jennifer A. Ballard; David S. Dobkin

    2005-01-01

    Cattle were removed from the high desert riparian habitats of Hart Mountain and Sheldon National Wildlife Refuges in 1990. This study compares songbird abundance in 2000-2001 to that in 1991-1993 on 69 permanent plots. Of the 51 species for which detections were sufficient to calculate changes in abundance, 71 percent (36/51) exhibited a positive trend and 76 percent (...

  7. Benthic Habitat Mapping Using Multispectral High-Resolution Imagery: Evaluation of Shallow Water Atmospheric Correction Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Eugenio

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Remote multispectral data can provide valuable information for monitoring coastal water ecosystems. Specifically, high-resolution satellite-based imaging systems, as WorldView-2 (WV-2, can generate information at spatial scales needed to implement conservation actions for protected littoral zones. However, coastal water-leaving radiance arriving at the space-based sensor is often small as compared to reflected radiance. In this work, complex approaches, which usually use an accurate radiative transfer code to correct the atmospheric effects, such as FLAASH, ATCOR and 6S, have been implemented for high-resolution imagery. They have been assessed in real scenarios using field spectroradiometer data. In this context, the three approaches have achieved excellent results and a slightly superior performance of 6S model-based algorithm has been observed. Finally, for the mapping of benthic habitats in shallow-waters marine protected environments, a relevant application of the proposed atmospheric correction combined with an automatic deglinting procedure is presented. This approach is based on the integration of a linear mixing model of benthic classes within the radiative transfer model of the water. The complete methodology has been applied to selected ecosystems in the Canary Islands (Spain but the obtained results allow the robust mapping of the spatial distribution and density of seagrass in coastal waters and the analysis of multitemporal variations related to the human activity and climate change in littoral zones.

  8. Using maximum entropy modeling to identify and prioritize red spruce forest habitat in West Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nathan R. Beane; James S. Rentch; Thomas M. Schuler

    2013-01-01

    Red spruce forests in West Virginia are found in island-like distributions at high elevations and provide essential habitat for the endangered Cheat Mountain salamander and the recently delisted Virginia northern flying squirrel. Therefore, it is important to identify restoration priorities of red spruce forests. Maximum entropy modeling was used to identify areas of...

  9. Snowmelt in a High Latitude Mountain Catchment: Effect of Vegetation Cover and Elevation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pomeroy, J. W.; Essery, R. L.; Ellis, C. R.; Hedstrom, N. R.; Janowicz, R.; Granger, R. J.

    2004-12-01

    The energetics and mass balance of snowpacks in the premelt and melt period were compared from three elevation bands in a high latitude mountain catchment, Wolf Creek Research Basin, Yukon. Elevation is strongly correlated with vegetation cover and in this case the three elevation bands (low, middle, high) correspond to mature spruce forest, dense shrub tundra and sparse tundra (alpine). Measurements of radiation, ground heat flux, snow depth, snowfall, air temperature, wind speed were made on a half-hourly basis at the three elevations for a 10 year period. Sondes provided vertical gradients of air temperature, humidity, wind speed and air pressure. Snow depth and density surveys were conducted monthly. Comparisons of wind speed, air temperature and humidity at three elevations show that the expected elevational gradients in the free atmosphere were slightly enhanced just above the surface canopies, but that the climate at the snow surface was further influenced by complex canopy effects. Premelt snow accumulation was strongly affected by intercepted snow in the forest and blowing snow sublimation in the sparse tundra but not by the small elevational gradients in snowfall. As a result the maximum premelt SWE was found in the mid-elevation shrub tundra and was roughly double that of the sparse tundra or forest. Minimum variability of SWE was observed in the forest and shrub tundra (CV=0.25) while in the sparse tundra variability doubled (CV=0.5). Snowmelt was influenced by differences in premelt accumulation as well as differences in the net energy fluxes to snow. Elevation had a strong effect on the initiation of melt with the forest melt starting on average 16 days before the shrub tundra and 19 days before the sparse tundra. Mean melt rates showed a maximum in middle elevations and increased from 860 kJ/day in the forest to 1460 kJ/day in the sparse tundra and 2730 kJ/day in the shrub tundra. The forest canopy reduced melt while the shrub canopy enhanced it

  10. Fabrication and closure development of corrosion resistant containers for Nevada's Yucca Mountain high-level nuclear waste repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Russell, E.W.; Nelson, T.A.; Domian, H.A.; LaCount, D.F.; Robitz, E.S.; Stein, K.O.

    1989-11-01

    US Congress and the President have determined that the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada is to be characterized to determine its suitability for construction of the first US high-level nuclear waste repository. Work in connection with this site is carried out within the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP). Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has the responsibility for designing, developing, and projecting the performance of the waste package for the permanent storage of high-level nuclear waste. Babcock ampersand Wilcox (B ampersand W) is involved with the YMP as a subcontractor to LLNL. B ampersand W's role is to recommend and demonstrate a method for fabricating the metallic waste container and a method for performing the final closure of the container after it has been filled with waste. Various fabrication and closure methods are under consideration for the production of containers. This paper presents progress to date in identifying and evaluating the candidate manufacturing processes. 2 refs., 2 figs., 4 tabs

  11. Total system performance predictions (TSPA-1995) for the potential high-level waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sevougian, S.D.; Andrews, R.W.; McNeish, J.A.

    1996-01-01

    The management and operating contractor for the potential high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, has been recently completed a new performance assessment of the ability of the repository to isolate and contain nuclear waste for long time periods (up to 1,000,000 years). Sensitivity analyses determine the most important physical parameters and processes, using the most current information and models

  12. Changes in the high-mountain vegetation of the Central Iberian Peninsula as a probable sign of global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz-Elorza, Mario; Dana, Elías D; González, Alberto; Sobrino, Eduardo

    2003-08-01

    Aerial images of the high summits of the Spanish Central Range reveal significant changes in vegetation over the period 1957 to 1991. These changes include the replacement of high-mountain grassland communities dominated by Festuca aragonensis, typical of the Cryoro-Mediterranean belt, by shrub patches of Juniperus communis ssp. alpina and Cytisus oromediterraneus from lower altitudes (Oro-Mediterranean belt). Climatic data indicate a shift towards warmer conditions in this mountainous region since the 1940s, with the shift being particularly marked from 1960. Changes include significantly higher minimum and maximum temperatures, fewer days with snow cover and a redistribution of monthly rainfall. Total yearly precipitation showed no significant variation. There were no marked changes in land use during the time frame considered, although there were minor changes in grazing species in the 19th century. It is hypothesized that the advance of woody species into higher altitudes is probably related to climate change, which could have acted in conjunction with discrete variations in landscape management. The pronounced changes observed in the plant communities of the area reflect the susceptibility of high-mountain Mediterranean species to environmental change.

  13. Use of an analog site near Raymond, California, to develop equipment and methods for characterizing a potential high-level, nuclear waste repository site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Umari, A.M.J.; Geldon, A.; Patterson, G.; Gemmell, J.; Earle, J.; Darnell, J.

    1994-01-01

    Yucca Mountain, Nevada, currently is being investigated by the U.S. Geological Survey as a potential site for a high-level nuclear waste repository. Planned hydraulic-stress and tracer tests in fractured, tuffaceous rocks below the water table at Yucca Mountain will require work at depths in excess of 1,300 feet. To facilitate prototype testing of equipment and methods to be used in aquifer tests at Yucca Mountain, an analog site was selected in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada near Raymond, California. Two of nine 250- to 300-feet deep wells drilled into fractured, granitic rocks at the Raymond site have been instrumented with packers, pressure transducers, and other equipment that will be used at Yucca Mountain. Aquifer tests conducted at the Raymond site to date have demonstrated a need to modify some of the equipment and methods conceived for use at Yucca Mountain

  14. [Biogeochemical cycles in natural forest and conifer plantations in the high mountains of Colombia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    León, Juan Diego; González, María Isabel; Gallardo, Juan Fernando

    2011-12-01

    Plant litter production and decomposition are two important processes in forest ecosystems, since they provide the main organic matter input to soil and regulate nutrient cycling. With the aim to study these processes, litterfall, standing litter and nutrient return were studied for three years in an oak forest (Quercus humboldtii), pine (Pinus patula) and cypress (Cupressus lusitanica) plantations, located in highlands of the Central Cordillera of Colombia. Evaluation methods included: fine litter collection at fortnightly intervals using litter traps; the litter layer samples at the end of each sampling year and chemical analyses of both litterfall and standing litter. Fine litter fall observed was similar in oak forest (7.5 Mg ha/y) and in pine (7.8 Mg ha/y), but very low in cypress (3.5 Mg ha/y). Litter standing was 1.76, 1.73 and 1.3 Mg ha/y in oak, pine and cypress, respectively. The mean residence time of the standing litter was of 3.3 years for cypress, 2.1 years for pine and 1.8 years for oak forests. In contrast, the total amount of retained elements (N, P, S, Ca, Mg, K, Cu, Fe, Mn and Zn) in the standing litter was higher in pine (115 kg/ha), followed by oak (78 kg/ha) and cypress (24 kg/ha). Oak forests showed the lowest mean residence time of nutrients and the highest nutrients return to the soil as a consequence of a faster decomposition. Thus, a higher nutrient supply to soils from oaks than from tree plantations, seems to be an ecological advantage for recovering and maintaining the main ecosystem functioning features, which needs to be taken into account in restoration programs in this highly degraded Andean mountains.

  15. Carbon partitioning in the food web of a high mountain lake: from bacteria to zooplankton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra PUGNETTI

    1999-08-01

    Full Text Available The organisms of the microbial loop in Lake Paione Superiore (LPS, a high mountain lake in the Italian Alpine region, were studied together with phytoplankton and zooplankton for three successive years. The biomass of bacteria, HNF (heterotrophic nanoflagellates, ciliates and phytoplankton, as mean carbon concentration in the three years, was 30 and 37 μg C l-1 near the surface (SUR and the bottom (BOT respectively. Under the ice-cover the mean biomass carbon decreased especially at the BOT, whereas at SUR the decrease was less evident due to the maintenance of higher phytoplankton biomass (mixotrophic flagellates. In LPS ~50% of the carbon was confined in bacteria, 20% in protozoa and 30% in phytoplankton. The ratio Autotrophs/Heterotrophs was lower than 1 (mean: 0,97 at SUR and 0,58 at BOT thus indicating a system with a predominance of the heterotrophs. This might be the result of light inhibition of algal growth coupled to a production of dissolved carbon, utilized by bacteria. During late summer the peak of Daphnia longispina, the main component of the zooplankton of LPS, increased the carbon content in the lake to a total of 158 and 300 μg C l-1 in 1997 and 1998 respectively. At the late summer peaks, zooplankton represented from 78 to 89% of the total carbon of the pelagic communities. Furthermore, the presence of Daphnia could be responsible for a decrease in the biomass carbon of a variety of organisms (algae, protozoa and bacteria. It may be possible that this is an instance of zooplankton grazing on algae, protozoa and also bacteria, as Daphnia has very broad niches and may eat pico-, nanoplankton and small ciliates. In the oligotrophic LPS, a diet which also includes protozoa could give Daphnia a further chance of survival, as ciliates are an important source of fatty acids and sterols.

  16. Analysis of microseismic signals and temperature recordings for rock slope stability investigations in high mountain areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Occhiena

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The permafrost degradation is a probable cause for the increase of rock instabilities and rock falls observed in recent years in high mountain areas, particularly in the Alpine region. The phenomenon causes the thaw of the ice filling rock discontinuities; the water deriving from it subsequently freezes again inducing stresses in the rock mass that may lead, in the long term, to rock falls. To investigate these processes, a monitoring system composed by geophones and thermometers was installed in 2007 at the Carrel hut (3829 m a.s.l., Matterhorn, NW Alps. In 2010, in the framework of the Interreg 2007–2013 Alcotra project no. 56 MASSA, the monitoring system has been empowered and renovated in order to meet project needs.

    In this paper, the data recorded by this renewed system between 6 October 2010 and 5 October 2011 are presented and 329 selected microseismic events are analysed. The data processing has concerned the classification of the recorded signals, the analysis of their distribution in time and the identification of the most important trace characteristics in time and frequency domain. The interpretation of the results has evidenced a possible correlation between the temperature trend and the event occurrence.

    The research is still in progress and the data recording and interpretation are planned for a longer period to better investigate the spatial-temporal distribution of microseismic activity in the rock mass, with specific attention to the relation of microseismic activity with temperatures. The overall goal is to verify the possibility to set up an effective monitoring system for investigating the stability of a rock mass under permafrost conditions, in order to supply the researchers with useful data to better understand the relationship between temperature and rock mass stability and, possibly, the technicians with a valid tool for decision-making.

  17. Landscape genetics in the subterranean rodent Ctenomys "chasiquensis" associated with highly disturbed habitats from the southeastern Pampas region, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mora, Matías Sebastián; Mapelli, Fernando J; López, Aldana; Gómez Fernández, María Jimena; Mirol, Patricia M; Kittlein, Marcelo J

    2017-12-01

    Studies of genetic differentiation in fragmented environments help us to identify those landscape features that most affect gene flow and dispersal patterns. Particularly, the assessment of the relative significance of intrinsic biological and environmental factors affecting the genetic structure of populations becomes crucial. In this work, we assess the current dispersal patterns and population structure of Ctenomys "chasiquensis", a vulnerable and endemic subterranean rodent distributed on a small area in Central Argentina, using 9 polymorphic microsatellite loci. We use landscape genetics approaches to assess the relationship between genetic connectivity among populations and environmental attributes. Our analyses show that populations of C. "chasiquensis" are moderately to highly structured at a regional level. This pattern is most likely the outcome of substantial gene flow on the more homogeneous sand dune habitat of the Northwest of its distributional range, in conjunction with an important degree of isolation of eastern and southwestern populations, where the optimal habitat is surrounded by a highly fragmented landscape. Landscape genetics analysis suggests that habitat quality and longitude were the environmental factors most strongly associated with genetic differentiation/uniqueness of populations. In conclusion, our results indicate an important genetic structure in this species, even at a small spatial scale, suggesting that contemporary habitat fragmentation increases population differentiation.

  18. High rates of energy expenditure and water flux in free-ranging Point Reyes mountain beavers Aplodontia rufa phaea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crocker, D.E.; Kofahl, N.; Fellers, G.D.; Gates, N.B.; Houser, D.S.

    2007-01-01

    We measured water flux and energy expenditure in free-ranging Point Reyes mountain beavers Aplodontia rufa phaea by using the doubly labeled water method. Previous laboratory investigations have suggested weak urinary concentrating ability, high rates of water flux, and low basal metabolic rates in this species. However, free-ranging measurements from hygric mammals are rare, and it is not known how these features interact in the environment. Rates of water flux (210 ?? 32 mL d-1) and field metabolic rates (1,488 ?? 486 kJ d-1) were 159% and 265%, respectively, of values predicted by allometric equations for similar-sized herbivores. Mountain beavers can likely meet their water needs through metabolic water production and preformed water in food and thus remain in water balance without access to free water. Arginine-vasopressin levels were strongly correlated with rates of water flux and plasma urea : creatinine ratios, suggesting an important role for this hormone in regulating urinary water loss in mountain beavers. High field metabolic rates may result from cool burrow temperatures that are well below lower critical temperatures measured in previous laboratory studies and suggest that thermoregulation costs may strongly influence field energetics and water flux in semifossorial mammals. ?? 2007 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

  19. High mountain origin, phylogenetics, evolution, and niche conservatism of arctic lineages in the hemiparasitic genus Pedicularis (Orobanchaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tkach, Natalia; Ree, Richard H; Kuss, Patrick; Röser, Martin; Hoffmann, Matthias H

    2014-07-01

    The origin of the arctic flora covering the northernmost treeless areas is still poorly understood. Arctic plants may have evolved in situ or immigrated from the adjacent ecosystems. Frequently arctic species have disjunctive distributions between the Arctic and high mountain systems of the temperate zone. This pattern may result from long distance dispersal or from glacial plant migrations and extinctions of intermediate populations. The hemiparasitic genus Pedicularis is represented in the Arctic by c. 28 taxa and ranks among the six most species-rich vascular plant genera of this region. In this study, we test the hypothesis that these lineages evolved from predecessors occurring in northern temperate mountain ranges, many of which are current centers of diversity for the genus. We generated a nuclear ribosomal and chloroplast DNA phylogeny including almost all of the arctic taxa and nearly half of the genus as a whole. The arctic taxa of Pedicularis evolved 12-14 times independently and are mostly nested in lineages that otherwise occur in the high mountains of Eurasia and North America. It appears that only three arctic lineages arose from the present-day center of diversity of the genus, in the Hengduan Mountains and Himalayas. Two lineages are probably of lowland origin. Arctic taxa of Pedicularis show considerable niche conservatism with respect to soil moisture and grow predominantly in moist to wet soils. The studied characteristics of ecology, morphology, and chromosome numbers of arctic Pedicularis show a heterogeneous pattern of evolution. The directions of morphological changes among the arctic lineages show opposing trends. Arctic taxa are chiefly diploid, the few tetraploid chromosome numbers of the genus were recorded only for arctic taxa. Five arctic Pedicularis are annuals or biennials, life forms otherwise rare in the Arctic. Other genera of the Orobanchaceae consist also of an elevated number of short-lived species, thus hemiparasitism may

  20. Molybdenum, vanadium, and uranium weathering in small mountainous rivers and rivers draining high-standing islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Christopher B.; Carey, Anne E.; Lyons, W. Berry; Goldsmith, Steven T.; McAdams, Brandon C.; Trierweiler, Annette M.

    2017-12-01

    Rivers draining high standing islands (HSIs) and small mountainous rivers (SMRs) are known to have extremely high sediment fluxes, and can also have high chemical weathering yields, which makes them potentially important contributors to the global riverine elemental flux to the ocean. This work reports on the riverine concentrations, ocean flux, and weathering yields of Molybdenum (Mo), Vanadium (V), and Uranium (U) in a large number of small but geochemically important rivers using 338 river samples from ten lithologically-diverse regions. These redox-sensitive elements are used extensively to infer paleo-redox conditions in the ocean, and Mo and V are also important rock-derived micronutrients used by microorganisms in nitrogen fixation. Unlike in large river systems, in which dissolved Mo has been attributed predominately to pyrite dissolution, Mo concentrations in these rivers did not correlate with sulfate concentrations. V was found to correlate strongly with Si in terrains dominated by silicate rocks, but this trend was not observed in primarily sedimentary regions. Many rivers exhibited much higher V/Si ratios than larger rivers, and rivers draining young Quaternary volcanic rocks in Nicaragua had much higher dissolved V concentrations (mean = 1306 nM) than previously-studied rivers. U concentrations were generally well below the global average with the exception of rivers draining primarily sedimentary lithologies containing carbonates and shales. Fluxes of U and Mo from igneous terrains of intermediate composition are lower than the global average, while fluxes of V from these regions are higher, and up to two orders of magnitude higher in the Nicaragua rivers. Weathering yields of Mo and V in most regions are above the global mean, despite lower than average concentrations measured in some of those systems, indicating that the chemical weathering of these elements are higher in these SMR watersheds than larger drainages. In regions of active boundaries

  1. The importance of incorporating functional habitats into conservation planning for highly mobile species in dynamic systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Matthew H; Terauds, Aleks; Tulloch, Ayesha; Bell, Phil; Stojanovic, Dejan; Heinsohn, Robert

    2017-10-01

    The distribution of mobile species in dynamic systems can vary greatly over time and space. Estimating their population size and geographic range can be problematic and affect the accuracy of conservation assessments. Scarce data on mobile species and the resources they need can also limit the type of analytical approaches available to derive such estimates. We quantified change in availability and use of key ecological resources required for breeding for a critically endangered nomadic habitat specialist, the Swift Parrot (Lathamus discolor). We compared estimates of occupied habitat derived from dynamic presence-background (i.e., presence-only data) climatic models with estimates derived from dynamic occupancy models that included a direct measure of food availability. We then compared estimates that incorporate fine-resolution spatial data on the availability of key ecological resources (i.e., functional habitats) with more common approaches that focus on broader climatic suitability or vegetation cover (due to the absence of fine-resolution data). The occupancy models produced significantly (P increase or decrease in the area of one functional habitat (foraging or nesting) did not necessarily correspond to an increase or decrease in the other. Thus, an increase in the extent of occupied area may not equate to improved habitat quality or function. We argue these patterns are typical for mobile resource specialists but often go unnoticed because of limited data over relevant spatial and temporal scales and lack of spatial data on the availability of key resources. Understanding changes in the relative availability of functional habitats is crucial to informing conservation planning and accurately assessing extinction risk for mobile resource specialists. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  2. Transportation of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High Level Waste to Yucca Mountain: The Next Step in Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sweeney, Robin L.; Lechel, David J.

    2003-01-01

    In the U.S. Department of Energy's ''Final Environmental Impact Statement for a Geologic Repository for the Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste at Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada,'' the Department states that certain broad transportation-related decisions can be made. These include the choice of a mode of transportation nationally (mostly legal-weight truck or mostly rail) and in Nevada (mostly rail, mostly legal-weight truck, or mostly heavy-haul truck with use of an associated intermodal transfer station), as well as the choice among alternative rail corridors or heavy-haul truck routes with use of an associated intermodal transfer station in Nevada. Although a rail line does not service the Yucca Mountain site, the Department has identified mostly rail as its preferred mode of transportation, both nationally and in the State of Nevada. If mostly rail is selected for Nevada, the Department would then identify a preference for one of the rail corridors in consultation with affected stakeholders, particularly the State of Nevada. DOE would then select the rail corridor and initiate a process to select a specific rail alignment within the corridor for the construction of a rail line. Five proposed rail corridors were analyzed in the Final Environmental Impact Statement. The assessment considered the impacts of constructing a branch rail line in the five 400-meter (0.25mile) wide corridors. Each corridor connects the Yucca Mountain site with an existing mainline railroad in Nevada

  3. Yucca Mountain biological resources monitoring program; Annual report FY92

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1993-02-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize Yucca Mountain as a potential site for a geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste. During site characterization, the DOE will conduct a variety of geotechnical, geochemical, geological, and hydrological studies to determine the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a potential repository. To ensure that site characterization activities (SCA) do not adversely affect the environment at Yucca Mountain, an environmental program has been implemented to monitor and mitigate potential impacts and ensure activities comply with applicable environmental regulations. This report describes the activities and accomplishments of EG&G Energy Measurements, Inc. (EG&G/EM) during fiscal year 1992 (FY92) for six program areas within the Terrestrial Ecosystem component of the YMP environmental program. The six program areas are Site Characterization Effects, Desert Tortoises, Habitat Reclamation, Monitoring and Mitigation, Radiological Monitoring, and Biological Support.

  4. Yucca Mountain Biological Resources Monitoring Program; Annual report, FY91

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1992-01-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize Yucca Mountain as a possible site for a geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste. During site characterization, the DOE will conduct a variety of geotechnical, geochemical, geological, and hydrological studies to determine the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a repository. To ensure that site characterization activities (SCA) do not adversely affect the Yucca Mountain area, an environmental program has been implemented to monitor and mitigate potential impacts and to ensure that activities comply with applicable environmental regulations. This report describes the activities and accomplishments during fiscal year 1991 (FY91) for six program areas within the Terrestrial Ecosystem component of the YMP environmental program. The six program areas are Site Characterization Activities Effects, Desert Tortoises, Habitat Reclamation, Monitoring and Mitigation, Radiological Monitoring, and Biological Support.

  5. Riverine habitat dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, R.B.

    2013-01-01

    The physical habitat template is a fundamental influence on riverine ecosystem structure and function. Habitat dynamics refers to the variation in habitat through space and time as the result of varying discharge and varying geomorphology. Habitat dynamics can be assessed at spatial scales ranging from the grain (the smallest resolution at which an organism relates to its environment) to the extent (the broadest resolution inclusive of all space occupied during its life cycle). In addition to a potentially broad range of spatial scales, assessments of habitat dynamics may include dynamics of both occupied and nonoccupied habitat patches because of process interactions among patches. Temporal aspects of riverine habitat dynamics can be categorized into hydrodynamics and morphodynamics. Hydrodynamics refers to habitat variation that results from changes in discharge in the absence of significant change of channel morphology and at generally low sediment-transport rates. Hydrodynamic assessments are useful in cases of relatively high flow exceedance (percent of time a flow is equaled or exceeded) or high critical shear stress, conditions that are applicable in many studies of instream flows. Morphodynamics refers to habitat variation resulting from changes to substrate conditions or channel/floodplain morphology. Morphodynamic assessments are necessary when channel and floodplain boundary conditions have been significantly changed, generally by relatively rare flood events or in rivers with low critical shear stress. Morphodynamic habitat variation can be particularly important as disturbance mechanisms that mediate population growth or for providing conditions needed for reproduction, such as channel-migration events that erode cutbanks and provide new pointbar surfaces for germination of riparian trees. Understanding of habitat dynamics is increasing in importance as societal goals shift toward restoration of riverine ecosystems. Effective investment in restoration

  6. Shallow-water Benthic Habitats of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands from Aggregated Habitat Cover Maps Derived from High Resolution IKONOS Satellite Imagery (Draft)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Shallow-water, aggregated cover maps were produced by combining as many as four or more detailed habitat types into general cover categories. The original detailed...

  7. Aggregated Habitat Cover Maps Depicting the Shallow-water Benthic Habitats of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Derived from High Resolution IKONOS Satellite Imagery

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Shallow-water, aggregated cover maps were produced by combining as many as four or more detailed habitat types into general cover categories. The original detailed...

  8. Possible paths towards sustainable tourism development in a high-mountain resort

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurent Arcuset

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available This text starts from the teachings stemming from an evaluation of the tourist practices in the light of sustainable tourism principles, realized in 2004 within the framework of a national network piloted by the French Agency of Touristic Engineering (today ODIT France, for the ski resort of Valloire, first-generation resort in the Maurienne, which development and modernization in the 2000s kept pace with a vast real estate program. The article investigates the stakes and difficulties of the implementation of sustainable development in Valloire, asks the question of the "cultural revolution" which the actors should achieve to change the model of economic development, and suggest some tracks to reach there. The local approach of "sustainable tourism", indeed, seems for the moment rather to aim - as in many other high mountain ski resorts - towards a more environmental management of the basic urban functions than a real questioning of a tourist model based upon the triptych development of the ski slopes, securizing of the snow resource and touristic real estate programs.Ce texte part des enseignements issus d’une évaluation des pratiques touristiques à l’aune des principes du tourisme durable, réalisée en 2004 dans le cadre d’un réseau national piloté par l’Agence Française d’Ingénierie Touristique (aujourd’hui ODIT France, pour la station de Valloire, station de première génération de Maurienne dont le développement et la modernisation dans les années 2000 sont allés de pair avec un vaste programme immobilier. L’article explore les enjeux et les difficultés de la mise en œuvre du développement durable à Valloire, pose la question de la « révolution culturelle » que les acteurs devraient accomplir pour changer de modèle de développement économique, et suggère quelques pistes pour y parvenir. L’approche locale du « tourisme durable », en effet, semble pour l’heure plutôt tendre – comme dans bien

  9. Zooplankton abundance, species composition and ecology of tropical high-mountain crater lake Wonchi, Ethiopia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fasil Degefu

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The highlands of Ethiopia represent some of the remnants of undisturbed aquatic ecosystems; they are however highly threatened by significant socio–economic developments and associated anthropogenic impacts. Lake Wonchi is one of the few remaining fairly pristine high–mountain crater lakes in the central highlands and has never been investigated in detail. We present a first study on zooplankton taxa composition, abundance and biomass conducted over more than one year including the underlying environmental drivers. The lake is basic (pH 7.9-8.9, dilute (specific conductivity 185-245 µS cm-1 and oligotrophic with mean trophic status index of 36. The zooplankton community composition showed low species richness comprising a total of fourteen taxa with six cladocerans, one copepod and seven rotifers. Simpson´s index of diversity with values between 0.6 and 0.8 pointed towards a homogenous taxa occurrence within the single sample units. The overall mean (±SD standing biomass of zooplankton was 62.02±25.76 mg dry mass m-3,which is low compared to other highland and rift valley lakes in Ethiopia. Cyclopoid copepods, in particular Thermocyclops ethiopiensis were the most abundant group and contributed 50% to the total zooplankton abundance followed by cladocerans (38% and rotifers (12%. Non-metric multi-dimensional scaling resulted in a 3-dimensional model, which revealed similar community composition on successive sampling dates except in December/January and May. Temperature, alkalinity, conductivity and nitrate-N had significant influence on this seasonal pattern. A weak, but significant positive correlation (r=0.482, N=20, P=0.037 between Chlorophyll a and zooplankton biomass mirrors a bottom-up effect of phytoplankton biomass on zooplankton dynamics. The zooplankton of Lake Wonchi displayed some degree of segregation along the epi– and metalimnion during this study, but diel vertical migration was not observed. The results show that fish

  10. Atmospheric Science Research at the Whiteface Mountain Adirondack High Peaks Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwab, J. J.; Brandt, R. E.; Casson, P.; Demerjian, K. L.; Crandall, B. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Atmospheric Sciences Research Center established an atmospheric observatory at Whiteface Mountain in the Adirondacks in 1961. The current mountain top observatory building was built by the University at Albany in 1969-70 and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) began ozone measurements at this summit location in 1973. Those measurements continue to this day and constitute a valuable long term data record for tropospheric ozone in the northeastern U.S. The elevation of the summit is 1483 m above sea level, and is roughly 90 m above the tree line in this location. With a mean cloud base height of less than 1100 m at the summit, it is a prime location for cloud research. The research station headquarters, laboratories, offices, and a second measurement site are located at the Marble Mountain Lodge, perched on a shoulder northeast of the massif at an elevation of 604 m above sea level. Parameters measured at the site include meteorological variables, trace gases, precipitation chemistry, aerosol mass and components, and more. Precipitation and cloud chemistry has a long history at the lodge and summit locations, respectively, and continues to this day. Some data from the 40-year record will be shown in the presentation. In the late 1980's the summit site was outfitted with instrumentation to measure oxides of nitrogen and other ozone precursors. Measurements of many of these same parameters were added at the lodge site and continue to this day. In this poster we will give an overview of the Whiteface Mountain Observatory and its two measurement locations. We will highlight the parameters currently being measured at our sites, and indicate those measured by ASRC, as well as those measured by other organizations. We will also recap some of the historical activities and measurement programs that have taken place at the site, as alluded to above. Also included will be examples of the rich archive of trends data for gas phase species

  11. High Resolution Spatial Analysis of Habitat Preference of Aedes Albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae) in an Urban Environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cianci, D.; Hartemink, N.; Zeimes, C.B.; Vanwambeke, S.O.; Ienco, A.; Caputo, B.

    2015-01-01

    Over the past decades, the Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus (Skuse, 1895)) has emerged in many countries, and it has colonized new environments, including urban areas. The species is a nuisance and a potential vector of several human pathogens, and a better understanding of the habitat

  12. Mountains: top down.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodwell, George M

    2004-11-01

    Mountainous regions offer not only essential habitat and resources, including water, to the earth's more than 6 billion inhabitants, but also insights into how the global human habitat works, how it is being changed at the moment as global climates are disrupted, and how the disruption may lead to global biotic and economic impoverishment. At least 600 million of the earth's more than 6 billion humans dwell in mountainous regions. Such regions feed water into all the major rivers of the world whose valleys support most of the rest of us. At least half of the valley dwellers receive part or all of their water from montane sources, many from the melt water of glaciers, others from the annual snow melt. Glaciers are retreating globally as the earth warms as a result of human-caused changes in the composition of the atmosphere. Many are disappearing, a change that threatens municipal water supplies virtually globally. The warming is greatest in the higher latitudes where the largest glaciers such as those of Greenland and the Antarctic Continent have become vulnerable. The melting of ice in the northern hemisphere raises serious concerns about the continued flow of the Gulf Stream and the possibility of massive climatic changes in Scandinavia and northern Europe. Mountains are also biotic islands in the sea life, rich in endemism at the ecotype level. The systematic warming of the earth changes the environment out from under these genetically specialized strains (ecotypes) which are then maladapted and vulnerable to diseases of all types. The process is systematic impoverishment in the pattern conspicuous on mountain slopes with increasing exposure to climatic extremes. It is seen now in the increased mortality and morbidity of plants as climatic changes accumulate. The seriousness of the global climatic disruption is especially clear in any consideration of mountains. It can and must be addressed constructively despite the adamancy of the current US administration.

  13. Phylogenetic and functional analysis of metagenome sequence from high-temperature archaeal habitats demonstrate linkages between metabolic potential and geochemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William P. Inskeep

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Geothermal habitats in Yellowstone National Park (YNP provide an unparalled opportunity to understand the environmental factors that control the distribution of archaea in thermal habitats. Here we describe, analyze and synthesize metagenomic and geochemical data collected from seven high-temperature sites that contain microbial communities dominated by archaea relative to bacteria. The specific objectives of the study were to use metagenome sequencing to determine the structure and functional capacity of thermophilic archaeal-dominated microbial communities across a pH range from 2.5 to 6.4 and to discuss specific examples where the metabolic potential correlated with measured environmental parameters and geochemical processes occurring in situ. Random shotgun metagenome sequence (~40-45 Mbase Sanger sequencing per site was obtained from environmental DNA extracted from high-temperature sediments and/or microbial mats and subjected to numerous phylogenetic and functional analyses. Analysis of individual sequences (e.g., MEGAN and G+C content and assemblies from each habitat type revealed the presence of dominant archaeal populations in all environments, 10 of whose genomes were largely reconstructed from the sequence data. Analysis of protein family occurrence, particularly of those involved in energy conservation, electron transport and autotrophic metabolism, revealed significant differences in metabolic strategies across sites consistent with differences in major geochemical attributes (e.g., sulfide, oxygen, pH. These observations provide an ecological basis for understanding the distribution of indigenous archaeal lineages across high temperature systems of YNP.

  14. From Mountains to Plains: The Hydrogeochemistry of the Boulder Creek Watershed, Colorado during High- and Low-Flow Conditions 2000

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verplanck, P. L.; Murphy, S. F.; McCleskey, R. B.; Barber, L. B.; Roth, D. A.

    2002-05-01

    A hydrogeochemical study of the Boulder Creek watershed was undertaken to evaluate natural and anthropogenic sources of solutes and the geochemical processes that affect stream chemistry. The Boulder Creek watershed, 1160 km{2}, is in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado and can be delineated into five physiographic/land use regions: the headwater region (elev. 4100 to 2600 m, tundra to pine/fir forest, Precambrian and Tertiary gneisses and plutons, sparse habitation), the mountain corridor (elev. 2600 to 1750 m, ponderosa pine, Precambrian and Tertiary gneisses and plutons, small mountain communities), the urban region (elev. 1750 to 1560 m, grassland, Mesozoic sedimentary units, City of Boulder), the wastewater-dominated reach (elev. 1560 to 1540 m, grassland, Mesozoic sedimentary units, sewage treatment plant effluent), and the agriculture region (elev. 1540 to 1480 m, grassland, Mesozoic sedimentary units, mixed urban and agricultural). Potential anthropogenic sources of solutes include: mining (hardrock and aggregate), septic systems, highway runoff, urban wastewater, and agricultural practices. A 70 km reach of Boulder Creek (16 sites) and its major inflows (13 sites) were sampled during high- and low-flow conditions in 2000. At all sites, discharge was measured or estimated, and water samples were analyzed for major and trace elements and organic carbon. At selected sites, analyses also included a suite of pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and wastewater-derived organic compounds and the strontium isotopic composition. Stream water in the headwater region is a dilute Ca-Mg-HCO3-SO4- water, and in the mountain corridor a slight increase in solutes was observed. Within the urban reach solute concentrations increased, with the most dramatic increase below the sewage treatment plant. Many constituents continue to increase in concentration through the urban/agriculture region. Similar trends were observed during high- and low-flow conditions with

  15. How endangered is sexual reproduction of high-mountain plants by summer frosts? Frost resistance, frequency of frost events and risk assessment

    OpenAIRE

    Ladinig, Ursula; Hacker, J?rgen; Neuner, Gilbert; Wagner, Johanna

    2013-01-01

    In temperate-zone mountains, summer frosts usually occur during unpredictable cold spells with snow-falls. Earlier studies have shown that vegetative aboveground organs of most high-mountain plants tolerate extracellular ice in the active state. However, little is known about the impact of frost on reproductive development and reproductive success. In common plant species from the European Alps (Cerastium uniflorum, Loiseleuria procumbens, Ranunculus glacialis, Rhododendron ferrugineum, Saxif...

  16. Genotype and year variability of the chemical composition of walnut oil of Moroccan seedlings from the high Atlas Mountains

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kodad, O.; EstopaNan, G.; Juan, T.; Socias i Company, R.; Sindic, M.

    2016-07-01

    Protein and oil content, fatty acid composition and tocopherol concentration were determined for two years in the kernel of ten candidate walnut selections from the high Atlas Mountains in Morocco. Considerable variation between genotypes was found for all parameters. The ranges of protein content (11.58–14.5% of kernel dry weight, DW), oil content (54.4–67.48% of kernel DW), oleic (12.47–22.01% of total oil), linoleic (55.03–60.01%), linolenic (9.3–15.87%), palmitic (6.84–9.12%), and stearic (1.7–2.92%) acid percentages, ?-tocopherol (188.1–230.7 mg·kg-1 of oil), d-tocopherol (23.3–43.4 mg·kg-1), and a-tocopherol (8.9–16.57 mg·kg-1) contents agreed with previous results obtained from other commercial walnut cultivars. The effect of year was significant for all the chemical components, except for oil content and palmitic acid percentage. Some genotypes showed high oil contents and consistently high values of ?-tocopherol in both years of study. The introduction of these genotypes as new cultivars by vegetative propagation may result in a an increase in quality of the walnuts from the high Atlas Mountains of Morocco, and as a seed source for forest walnut propagation in the same region. (Author)

  17. High-resolution behavioral mapping of electric fishes in Amazonian habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madhav, Manu S; Jayakumar, Ravikrishnan P; Demir, Alican; Stamper, Sarah A; Fortune, Eric S; Cowan, Noah J

    2018-04-11

    The study of animal behavior has been revolutionized by sophisticated methodologies that identify and track individuals in video recordings. Video recording of behavior, however, is challenging for many species and habitats including fishes that live in turbid water. Here we present a methodology for identifying and localizing weakly electric fishes on the centimeter scale with subsecond temporal resolution based solely on the electric signals generated by each individual. These signals are recorded with a grid of electrodes and analyzed using a two-part algorithm that identifies the signals from each individual fish and then estimates the position and orientation of each fish using Bayesian inference. Interestingly, because this system involves eavesdropping on electrocommunication signals, it permits monitoring of complex social and physical interactions in the wild. This approach has potential for large-scale non-invasive monitoring of aquatic habitats in the Amazon basin and other tropical freshwater systems.

  18. High dispersal in a frog species suggests that it is vulnerable to habitat fragmentation

    OpenAIRE

    Funk, W. Chris; Greene, Allison E; Corn, Paul Stephen; Allendorf, Fred W

    2005-01-01

    Global losses of amphibian populations are a major conservation concern and their causes have generated substantial debate. Habitat fragmentation is considered one important cause of amphibian decline. However, if fragmentation is to be invoked as a mechanism of amphibian decline, it must first be established that dispersal is prevalent among contiguous amphibian populations using formal movement estimators. In contrast, if dispersal is naturally low in amphibians, fragmentation can be disreg...

  19. Trends in dynamics of forest upper boundary in high mountains of northern Baikal area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. I. Voronin

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Studies of spatial-temporal variability of the upper boundary of the forest on the north-western coast of Lake Baikal (Baikal and Upper Angara Ridges are performed on the base of the analysis of forests renewal processes and of the dynamics of larch radial increment in the ecotone of the forest upper boundary and out of it. The presence of a large amount of well-developed uplands and circuses with considerable heights drops in the structure of mountain system favours formation of interrupted boundary between forest and subgoltsy belt. The timber stand of the upper forest boundary in the studied area is represented by Daurian larch. Three tree-ring chronologies of larch are obtained. The longest chronology is obtained for mountain taiga belt of Baikal Ridge and is as long as 460 years. Since 1980ies, a sustainable trend of increase of radial trees growth is observed. It is observed the most distinctly in trees of the upper forest boundary on the Baikal Ridge. There is advancing of trees species into subgoltsy belt and into mountain tundra, which depends, respectively, on slopes heights, exposition and tilting, on sites of growth of concrete cenoses. Modern peculiarity of the vegetation of the studied area is presence of abundant viable larch undergrowth (from 2–3 to 25 y.o. and fir in the ecotone of upper forest boundary and in subgoltsy belt, as well as appearing of single specimens of spruce. Main undergrowth mass (2/3 is presented by trees aged in average 15–25 y.o., i.e., they appeared in late 1980ies. Due to increase of snow cover thickness in winter, the trees young growth obtained great protection from freezing resulting in the increase of ability of young growth to live up to elder age.

  20. High gene flow in epiphytic ferns despite habitat loss and fragmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkler, Manuela; Koch, Marcus; Hietz, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Tropical montane forests suffer from increasing fragmentation and replacement by other types of land-use such as coffee plantations. These processes are known to affect gene flow and genetic structure of plant populations. Epiphytes are particularly vulnerable because they depend on their supporting trees for their entire life-cycle. We compared population genetic structure and genetic diversity derived from AFLP markers of two epiphytic fern species differing in their ability to colonize secondary habitats. One species, Pleopeltis crassinervata , is a successful colonizer of shade trees and isolated trees whereas the other species, Polypodium rhodopleuron , is restricted to forests with anthropogenic separation leading to significant isolation between populations. By far most genetic variation was distributed within rather than among populations in both species, and a genetic admixture analysis did not reveal any clustering. Gene flow exceeded by far the benchmark of one migrant per generation to prevent genetic divergence between populations in both species. Though populations are threatened by habitat loss, long-distance dispersal is likely to support gene flow even between distant populations, which efficiently delays genetic isolation. Consequently, populations may rather be threatened by ecological consequences of habitat loss and fragmentation.

  1. Applications of natural analogue studies to Yucca Mountain as a potential high level radioactive waste repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-02-01

    The 5-member group convened in Las Vegas, Nov. 11-13, 1991, to clarify the extent to which studies of natural analogues can assist the Yucca Mountain site characterization (SC) project. This document is to provide guidance and recommendations to DOE for the implementation of natural analogue studies in the SC program. Performance assessment, integrity of engineered barriers, and communication to the public and the scientific community are stressed. The reference design being developed by Babcock ampersand Wilcox Fuel Company are reviewed. Guidelines for selecting natural analogues are given. Quality assurance is discussed. Recommendations are given for developing an effective natural analogue program within the SC program

  2. Some Materials Degradation Issues in the U.S. High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository Study (The Yucca Mountain Project)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    F. Hua; P. Pasupathi; N. Brown; K. Mon

    2005-09-19

    The safe disposal of radioactive waste requires that the waste be isolated from the environment until radioactive decay has reduced its toxicity to innocuous levels for plants, animals, and humans. All of the countries currently studying the options for disposing of high-level nuclear waste (HLW) have selected deep geologic formations to be the primary barrier for accomplishing this isolation. In U.S.A., the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) designated Yucca Mountain in Nevada as the potential site to be characterized for high-level nuclear waste (HLW) disposal. Long-term containment of waste and subsequent slow release of radionuclides into the geosphere will rely on a system of natural and engineered barriers including a robust waste containment design. The waste package design consists of a highly corrosion resistant Ni-based Alloy 22 cylindrical barrier surrounding a Type 316 stainless steel inner structural vessel. The waste package is covered by a mailbox-shaped drip shield composed primarily of Ti Grade 7 with Ti Grade 24 structural support members. The U.S. Yucca Mountain Project has been studying and modeling the degradation issues of the relevant materials for some 20 years. This paper reviews the state-of-the-art understanding of the degradation processes based on the past 20 years studies on Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) materials degradation issues with focus on interaction between the in-drift environmental conditions and long-term materials degradation of waste packages and drip shields within the repository system during the 10,000 years regulatory period. This paper provides an overview of the current understanding of the likely degradation behavior of the waste package and drip shield in the repository after the permanent closure of the facility. The degradation scenario discussed in this paper include aging and phase instability, dry oxidation, general and localized corrosion, stress corrosion cracking and hydrogen induced

  3. Some Materials Degradation Issues in the U.S. High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository Study (The Yucca Mountain Project)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hua, F.; Pasupathi, P.; Brown, N.; Mon, K.

    2005-01-01

    The safe disposal of radioactive waste requires that the waste be isolated from the environment until radioactive decay has reduced its toxicity to innocuous levels for plants, animals, and humans. All of the countries currently studying the options for disposing of high-level nuclear waste (HLW) have selected deep geologic formations to be the primary barrier for accomplishing this isolation. In U.S.A., the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (as amended in 1987) designated Yucca Mountain in Nevada as the potential site to be characterized for high-level nuclear waste (HLW) disposal. Long-term containment of waste and subsequent slow release of radionuclides into the geosphere will rely on a system of natural and engineered barriers including a robust waste containment design. The waste package design consists of a highly corrosion resistant Ni-based Alloy 22 cylindrical barrier surrounding a Type 316 stainless steel inner structural vessel. The waste package is covered by a mailbox-shaped drip shield composed primarily of Ti Grade 7 with Ti Grade 24 structural support members. The U.S. Yucca Mountain Project has been studying and modeling the degradation issues of the relevant materials for some 20 years. This paper reviews the state-of-the-art understanding of the degradation processes based on the past 20 years studies on Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) materials degradation issues with focus on interaction between the in-drift environmental conditions and long-term materials degradation of waste packages and drip shields within the repository system during the 10,000 years regulatory period. This paper provides an overview of the current understanding of the likely degradation behavior of the waste package and drip shield in the repository after the permanent closure of the facility. The degradation scenario discussed in this paper include aging and phase instability, dry oxidation, general and localized corrosion, stress corrosion cracking and hydrogen induced

  4. Grizzly bear habitat selection is scale dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciarniello, Lana M; Boyce, Mark S; Seip, Dale R; Heard, Douglas C

    2007-07-01

    The purpose of our study is to show how ecologists' interpretation of habitat selection by grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) is altered by the scale of observation and also how management questions would be best addressed using predetermined scales of analysis. Using resource selection functions (RSF) we examined how variation in the spatial extent of availability affected our interpretation of habitat selection by grizzly bears inhabiting mountain and plateau landscapes. We estimated separate models for females and males using three spatial extents: within the study area, within the home range, and within predetermined movement buffers. We employed two methods for evaluating the effects of scale on our RSF designs. First, we chose a priori six candidate models, estimated at each scale, and ranked them using Akaike Information Criteria. Using this method, results changed among scales for males but not for females. For female bears, models that included the full suite of covariates predicted habitat use best at each scale. For male bears that resided in the mountains, models based on forest successional stages ranked highest at the study-wide and home range extents, whereas models containing covariates based on terrain features ranked highest at the buffer extent. For male bears on the plateau, each scale estimated a different highest-ranked model. Second, we examined differences among model coefficients across the three scales for one candidate model. We found that both the magnitude and direction of coefficients were dependent upon the scale examined; results varied between landscapes, scales, and sexes. Greenness, reflecting lush green vegetation, was a strong predictor of the presence of female bears in both landscapes and males that resided in the mountains. Male bears on the plateau were the only animals to select areas that exposed them to a high risk of mortality by humans. Our results show that grizzly bear habitat selection is scale dependent. Further, the

  5. Multiple cold resistance loci confer the high cold tolerance adaptation of Dongxiang wild rice (Oryza rufipogon) to its high-latitude habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Donghai; Yu, Li; Chen, Dazhou; Li, Lanying; Zhu, Yuxing; Xiao, Yeqing; Zhang, Dechun; Chen, Caiyan

    2015-07-01

    Dongxiang wild rice is phylogenetically close to temperate japonica and contains multiple cold resistance loci conferring its adaptation to high-latitude habitat. Understanding the nature of adaptation in wild populations will benefit crop breeding in the development of climate-resilient crop varieties. Dongxiang wild rice (DXWR), the northernmost common wild rice known, possesses a high degree of cold tolerance and can survive overwintering in its native habitat. However, to date, it is still unclear how DXWR evolved to cope with low-temperature environment, resulting in limited application of DXWR in rice breeding programs. In this study, we carried out both QTL mapping and phylogenetic analysis to discern the genetic mechanism underlying the strong cold resistance. Through a combination of interval mapping and single locus analysis in two genetic populations, at least 13 QTLs for seedling cold tolerance were identified in DXWR. A phylogenetic study using both genome-wide InDel markers and markers associated with cold tolerance loci reveals that DXWR belongs to the Or-III group, which is most closely related to cold-tolerant Japonica rice rather than to the Indica cultivars that are predominant in the habitat where DXWR grows. Our study paves the way toward an understanding of the nature of adaptation to a northern habitat in O. rufipogon. The QTLs identified in DXWR in this study will be useful for molecular breeding of cold-tolerant rice.

  6. Vegetation Description, Rare Plant Inventory, and Vegetation Monitoring for Craig Mountain, Idaho.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mancuso, Michael; Moseley, Robert

    1994-12-01

    The Craig Mountain Wildlife Mitigation Area was purchased by Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) as partial mitigation for wildlife losses incurred with the inundation of Dworshak Reservoir on the North Fork Clearwater River. Upon completion of the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) process, it is proposed that title to mitigation lands will be given to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG). Craig Mountain is located at the northern end of the Hells Canyon Ecosystem. It encompasses the plateau and steep canyon slopes extending from the confluence of the Snake and Salmon rivers, northward to near Waha, south of Lewiston, Idaho. The forested summit of Craig Mountain is characterized by gently rolling terrain. The highlands dramatically break into the canyons of the Snake and Salmon rivers at approximately the 4,700 foot contour. The highly dissected canyons are dominated by grassland slopes containing a mosaic of shrubfield, riparian, and woodland habitats. During the 1993 and 1994 field seasons, wildlife, habitat/vegetation, timber, and other resources were systematically inventoried at Craig Mountain to provide Fish and Game managers with information needed to draft an ecologically-based management plan. The results of the habitat/vegetation portion of the inventory are contained in this report. The responsibilities for the Craig Mountain project included: (1) vegetation data collection, and vegetation classification, to help produce a GIS-generated Craig Mountain vegetation map, (2) to determine the distribution and abundance of rare plants populations and make recommendations concerning their management, and (3) to establish a vegetation monitoring program to evaluate the effects of Fish and Game management actions, and to assess progress towards meeting habitat mitigation goals.

  7. Vegetation description, rare plant inventory, and vegetation monitoring for Craig Mountain, Idaho

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mancuso, M.; Moseley, R.

    1994-12-01

    The Craig Mountain Wildlife Mitigation Area was purchased by Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) as partial mitigation for wildlife losses incurred with the inundation of Dworshak Reservoir on the North Fork Clearwater River. Upon completion of the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) process, it is proposed that title to mitigation lands will be given to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG). Craig Mountain is located at the northern end of the Hells Canyon Ecosystem. It encompasses the plateau and steep canyon slopes extending from the confluence of the Snake and Salmon rivers, northward to near Waha, south of Lewiston, Idaho. The forested summit of Craig Mountain is characterized by gently rolling terrain. The highlands dramatically break into the canyons of the Snake and Salmon rivers at approximately the 4,700 foot contour. The highly dissected canyons are dominated by grassland slopes containing a mosaic of shrubfield, riparian, and woodland habitats. During the 1993 and 1994 field seasons, wildlife, habitat/vegetation, timber, and other resources were systematically inventoried at Craig Mountain to provide Fish and Game managers with information needed to draft an ecologically-based management plan. The results of the habitat/vegetation portion of the inventory are contained in this report. The responsibilities for the Craig Mountain project included: (1) vegetation data collection, and vegetation classification, to help produce a GIS-generated Craig Mountain vegetation map, (2) to determine the distribution and abundance of rare plants populations and make recommendations concerning their management, and (3) to establish a vegetation monitoring program to evaluate the effects of Fish and Game management actions, and to assess progress towards meeting habitat mitigation goals

  8. Phylogeny and diversification of mountain vipers (Montivipera, Nilson et al., 2001) triggered by multiple Plio-Pleistocene refugia and high-mountain topography in the Near and Middle East.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stümpel, Nikolaus; Rajabizadeh, Mehdi; Avcı, Aziz; Wüster, Wolfgang; Joger, Ulrich

    2016-08-01

    The Near and Middle East is a hotspot of biodiversity, but the region remains underexplored at the level of genetic biodiversity. Here, we present an extensive molecular phylogeny of the viperid snake genus Montivipera, including all known taxa. Based on nuclear and mitochondrial data, we present novel insights into the phylogeny of the genus and review the status of its constituent species. Maximum likelihood methods revealed a montane origin of Montivipera at 12.3Mya. We then analyzed factors of mountain viper diversity. Our data support substantial changes in effective population size through Plio-Pleistocene periods. We conclude that climatic oscillations were drivers of allopatric speciation, and that mountain systems of the Near and Middle East have strongly influenced the evolution and survival of taxa, because climatic and topographical heterogeneities induced by mountains have played a crucial role as filters for dispersal and as multiple refugia. The wide diversity of montane microhabitats enabled mountain vipers to retain their ecological niche during climatic pessima. In consequence the varied geological and topographical conditions between refugia favoured genetic isolation and created patterns of species richness resulting in the formation of neoendemic taxa. Our data support high concordance between geographic distributions of Montivipera haplotypes with putative plant refugia. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. Yucca Mountain Biological Resources Monitoring Program. Progress report, October 1992--December 1993

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1994-05-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of (as amended in 1987) to study and characterize the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a potential geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste. During site characterization, the DOE will conduct a variety of geotechnical, geochemical, geological, and hydrological studies to determine the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a potential repository. To ensure that site characterization activities do not adversely affect the environment at Yucca Mountain, a program has been implemented to monitor and mitigate potential impacts and ensure activities comply with applicable environmental regulations. This report describes the activities and accomplishments of EG ampersand G Energy Measurements, Inc. (EG ampersand G/EM) from October 1992 through December 1993 for six program areas within the Terrestrial Ecosystem component of the environmental program for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project (YMP): Site Characterization Effects, Desert Tortoises (Gopherus agassizii), Habitat Reclamation, Monitoring and Mitigation, Radiological Monitoring, and Biological Support

  10. Multivariate characterization of elements accumulated in King Bolete Boletus edulis mushroom at lowland and high mountain regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falandysz, J; Kunito, T; Kubota, R; Bielawski, L; Frankowska, A; Falandysz, Justyna J; Tanabe, S

    2008-12-01

    Based on ICP-MS, ICP-OES, HG-AAS, CV-AAS and elementary instrumental analysis of King Bolete collected from four sites of different soil bedrock geochemistry considered could be as mushroom abundant in certain elements. King's Bolete fruiting bodies are very rich in K (> 20 mg/g dry weight), rich in Ca, Mg, Na, Rb and Zn (> 100 microg/g dw), and relatively also rich in Ag, Cd, Cs, Cu, Fe, Mn and Se (> 10 microg/g dw). The caps of King Bolete when compared to stipes around two-to three-fold more abundant are in Ag, Cd, Cs, Cu, Hg, K, Mg, Mo, N, Rb, Se and Zn. King Bolete collected at the lowland and mountain sites showed Ag, Ba, Co, Cr, Hg, K, Mg, Mn, Mo and Na in caps in comparable concentrations, and specimens from the mountain areas accumulated more Cd and Sb. Elements such as Al, Pb and Rb occurred at relatively elevated concentration in King Bolete picked up at the metal ores-rich region of the Sudety Mountains. Because of high bioconcentration potential King Bolete at the background sites accumulate in fruiting bodies great concentrations of problematic elements such as Cd, Pb and Hg, i.e. up to nearly 20, 3 and 5 microg/g dw, on the average, respectively. The interdependence among determined mineral elements examined were using the principal components analysis (PCA) method. The PCA explained 56% of the total variance. The metals tend to cluster together (Ba, Cd, Cs, Cr, Ga, Rb, Se, Sr and V; K and Mg; Cu and Mo). The results provided useful environmental and nutritional background level information on 26 minerals as the composition of King Bolete from the sites of different bedrock soil geochemistry.

  11. High altitude headache and acute mountain sickness at moderate elevations in a military population during battalion-level training exercises.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norris, Jacob N; Viirre, Erik; Aralis, Hilary; Sracic, Michael K; Thomas, Darren; Gertsch, Jeffery H

    2012-08-01

    Few studies have evaluated high altitude headache (HAH) and acute mountain sickness (AMS) in military populations training at moderate (1,500-2,500 m) to high altitudes (>2,500 m). In the current study, researchers interviewed active duty personnel training at Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center. Participants were asked about HAH and AMS symptoms, potential risk factors, and medications used. In a sample of 192 U.S. Navy and Marine Corps personnel, 14.6% reported AMS (Lake Louise Criteria > or = 3) and 28.6% reported HAH. Dehydration and recent arrival at altitude (defined as data collected on days 2-3) were significantly associated with AMS; decreased sleep allowance was significantly associated with HAH. Although ibuprofen/Motrin users were more likely to screen positive for AMS, among AMS-positive participants, ibuprofen/Motrin users had decreased likelihood of reporting robust AMS relative to non-ibuprofen/Motrin users (p altitude. Further, ibuprofen/Motrin may be a reasonable treatment for the symptoms of AMS and HAH, although further study is warranted.

  12. Assessing Climate-Induced Change in River Flow Using Satellite Remote Sensing and Process Modeling in High Mountain Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, K. C.

    2017-12-01

    Snow- and glacier-fed river systems originating from High Mountain Asia (HMA) support diverse ecosystems and provide the basis for food and energy production for more than a billion people living downstream. Climate-driven changes in the melting of snow and glaciers and in precipitation patterns are expected to significantly alter the flow of the rivers in the HMA region at various temporal scales, which in turn could heavily affect the socioeconomics of the region. Hence, climate change effects on seasonal and long-term hydrological conditions may have far reaching economic impact annually and over the century. We are developing a decision support tool utilizing integrated microwave remote sensing datasets, process modeling and economic models to inform water resource management decisions and ecosystem sustainability as related to the High Mountain Asia (HMA) region's response to climate change. The availability of consistent time-series microwave remote sensing datasets from Earth-orbiting scatterometers, radiometers and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery provides the basis for the observational framework of this monitoring system. We discuss the assembly, processing and application of scatterometer and SAR data sets from the Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) and Sentinal-1 SARs, and the enlistment of these data to monitor seasonal melt and thaw status of glacier-dominated and surrounding regions. We present current status and future plans for this effort. Our team's study emphasizes processes and economic modeling within the Trishuli basin; our remote sensing analysis supports analyses across the HiMAT domain.

  13. Incorporating wind availability into land use regression modelling of air quality in mountainous high-density urban environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Yuan; Lau, Kevin Ka-Lun; Ng, Edward

    2017-08-01

    Urban air quality serves as an important function of the quality of urban life. Land use regression (LUR) modelling of air quality is essential for conducting health impacts assessment but more challenging in mountainous high-density urban scenario due to the complexities of the urban environment. In this study, a total of 21 LUR models are developed for seven kinds of air pollutants (gaseous air pollutants CO, NO 2 , NO x , O 3 , SO 2 and particulate air pollutants PM 2.5 , PM 10 ) with reference to three different time periods (summertime, wintertime and annual average of 5-year long-term hourly monitoring data from local air quality monitoring network) in Hong Kong. Under the mountainous high-density urban scenario, we improved the traditional LUR modelling method by incorporating wind availability information into LUR modelling based on surface geomorphometrical analysis. As a result, 269 independent variables were examined to develop the LUR models by using the "ADDRESS" independent variable selection method and stepwise multiple linear regression (MLR). Cross validation has been performed for each resultant model. The results show that wind-related variables are included in most of the resultant models as statistically significant independent variables. Compared with the traditional method, a maximum increase of 20% was achieved in the prediction performance of annual averaged NO 2 concentration level by incorporating wind-related variables into LUR model development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Timing of glacier advances and climate in the High Tatra Mountains (Western Carpathians) during the Last Glacial Maximum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makos, Michał; Dzierżek, Jan; Nitychoruk, Jerzy; Zreda, Marek

    2014-07-01

    During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), long valley glaciers developed on the northern and southern sides of the High Tatra Mountains, Poland and Slovakia. Chlorine-36 exposure dating of moraine boulders suggests two major phases of moraine stabilization, at 26-21 ka (LGM I - maximum) and at 18 ka (LGM II). The dates suggest a significantly earlier maximum advance on the southern side of the range. Reconstructing the geometry of four glaciers in the Sucha Woda, Pańszczyca, Mlynicka and Velicka valleys allowed determining their equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs) at 1460, 1460, 1650 and 1700 m asl, respectively. Based on a positive degree-day model, the mass balance and climatic parameter anomaly (temperature and precipitation) has been constrained for LGM I advance. Modeling results indicate slightly different conditions between northern and southern slopes. The N-S ELA gradient finds confirmation in slightly higher temperature (at least 1 °C) or lower precipitation (15%) on the south-facing glaciers during LGM I. The precipitation distribution over the High Tatra Mountains indicates potentially different LGM atmospheric circulation than at the present day, with reduced northwesterly inflow and increased southerly and westerly inflows of moist air masses.

  15. Yucca Mountain digital database

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Daudt, C.R.; Hinze, W.J.

    1992-01-01

    This paper discusses the Yucca Mountain Digital Database (DDB) which is a digital, PC-based geographical database of geoscience-related characteristics of the proposed high-level waste (HLW) repository site of Yucca Mountain, Nevada. It was created to provide the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission's (NRC) Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste (ACNW) and its staff with a visual perspective of geological, geophysical, and hydrological features at the Yucca Mountain site as discussed in the Department of Energy's (DOE) pre-licensing reports

  16. Studies of Corrosion Resistant Materials Being Considered for High-Level Nuclear Waste Containment in Yucca Mountain Relevant Environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McCright, R.D.; Ilevbare, G.; Estill, J.; Rebak, R.

    2001-01-01

    Containment of spent nuclear fuel and vitrified forms of high level nuclear waste require use of materials that are highly corrosion resistant to all of the anticipated environmental scenarios that can occur in a geological repository. Ni-Cr-Mo Alloy 22 (UNS N60622) is proposed for the corrosion resistant outer barrier of a two-layer waste package container at the potential repository site at Yucca Mountain. A range of water compositions that may contact the outer barrier is under consideration, and a testing program is underway to characterize the forms of corrosion and to quantify the corrosion rates. Results from the testing support models for long term prediction of the performance of the container. Results obtained to date indicate a very low general corrosion rate for Alloy 22 and very high resistance to all forms of localized and environmentally assisted cracking in environments tested to date

  17. Tropical coral reef habitat in a geoengineered, high-CO2 world

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couce, E.; Irvine, P. J.; Gregorie, L. J.; Ridgwell, A.; Hendy, E. J.

    2013-05-01

    Continued anthropogenic CO2 emissions are expected to impact tropical coral reefs by further raising sea surface temperatures (SST) and intensifying ocean acidification (OA). Although geoengineering by means of solar radiation management (SRM) may mitigate temperature increases, OA will persist, raising important questions regarding the impact of different stressor combinations. We apply statistical Bioclimatic Envelope Models to project changes in shallow water tropical coral reef habitat as a single niche (without resolving biodiversity or community composition) under various representative concentration pathway and SRM scenarios, until 2070. We predict substantial reductions in habitat suitability centered on the Indo-Pacific Warm Pool under net anthropogenic radiative forcing of ≥3.0 W/m2. The near-term dominant risk to coral reefs is increasing SSTs; below 3 W/m2 reasonably favorable conditions are maintained, even when achieved by SRM with persisting OA. "Optimal" mitigation occurs at 1.5 W/m2 because tropical SSTs overcool in a fully geoengineered (i.e., preindustrial global mean temperature) world.

  18. Biomass and species structure of the phytoplankton of an high mountain lake (Lake Paione Superiore, Central Alps, Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta BETTINETTI

    1999-08-01

    Full Text Available In the framework of the EU MOLAR Project on “Measuring and modelling the dynamic response of remote mountain lake ecosystems to environmental change” a three whole-year study (1996-1998 on the composition and dynamics of phytoplankton community of the high mountain lake, acid sensitive Lago Paione Superiore (LPS was carried out. The data were analyzed and compared with those gathered during the years 1991-1993. The phytoplankton was made up by nanoplanktonic unicellular algae, the only exception being the colonial Dinobryon sertularia. Just four species, belonging to Chrysophyceae (Chromulina sp., Dinobryon sertularia and Mallomonas alveolata and to Dinophyceae (Gymnodinium sp. were important as biomass and density, and they were always present throughout the year. The prevalence of potentially mixotrophic species suggests an adaptive strategy to the low environmental concentrations of inorganic carbon and phosphorus. The seasonal variations of the total biomass were similar to those observed in the previous years. The total number of species has increased; this could be related with the recent increase of the pH and of the alkalinity.

  19. Microbial and Functional Diversity within the Phyllosphere of Espeletia Species in an Andean High-Mountain Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Pérez, Carlos A; Restrepo, Silvia; Zambrano, María Mercedes

    2016-01-08

    Microbial populations residing in close contact with plants can be found in the rhizosphere, in the phyllosphere as epiphytes on the surface, or inside plants as endophytes. Here, we analyzed the microbiota associated with Espeletia plants, endemic to the Páramo environment of the Andes Mountains and a unique model for studying microbial populations and their adaptations to the adverse conditions of high-mountain neotropical ecosystems. Communities were analyzed using samples from the rhizosphere, necromass, and young and mature leaves, the last two analyzed separately as endophytes and epiphytes. The taxonomic composition determined by performing sequencing of the V5-V6 region of the 16S rRNA gene indicated differences among populations of the leaf phyllosphere, the necromass, and the rhizosphere, with predominance of some phyla but only few shared operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Functional profiles predicted on the basis of taxonomic affiliations differed from those obtained by GeoChip microarray analysis, which separated community functional capacities based on plant microenvironment. The identified metabolic pathways provided insight regarding microbial strategies for colonization and survival in these ecosystems. This study of novel plant phyllosphere microbiomes and their putative functional ecology is also the first step for future bioprospecting studies in search of enzymes, compounds, or microorganisms relevant to industry or for remediation efforts. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  20. Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis in performance assessment for the proposed high-level radioactive waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Helton, Jon C.; Hansen, Clifford W.; Sallaberry, Cédric J.

    2012-01-01

    Extensive work has been carried out by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in the development of a proposed geologic repository at Yucca Mountain (YM), Nevada, for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste. As part of this development, a detailed performance assessment (PA) for the YM repository was completed in 2008 and supported a license application by the DOE to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for the construction of the YM repository. The following aspects of the 2008 YM PA are described in this presentation: (i) conceptual structure and computational organization, (ii) uncertainty and sensitivity analysis techniques in use, (iii) uncertainty and sensitivity analysis for physical processes, and (iv) uncertainty and sensitivity analysis for expected dose to the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) specified the NRC’s regulations for the YM repository. - Highlights: ► An overview of performance assessment for the proposed Yucca Mountain radioactive waste repository is presented. ► Conceptual structure and computational organization are described. ► Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis techniques are described. ► Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis results for physical processes are presented. ► Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis results for expected dose are presented.

  1. Natural sorptive barriers in Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for long-term isolation of high-level waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bish, D.L.; Vaniman, D.T.; Rundberg, R.S.; Wolfsberg, K.; Daniels, W.R.; Broxton, D.E.

    1984-01-01

    There are several sorptive phases occurring naturally in the silicic tuffs at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, that can aid in the long-term isolation of high-level wastes. These phases include hydrated volcanic glasses, smectites and zeolites. Los Alamos has a continuing programme to investigate the mineralogy and stratigraphy of the tuffs at Yucca Mountain. In addition, extensive data have been obtained on the sorptive behaviour of technetium, strontium, caesium, barium, cerium, europium, uranium, neptunium, plutonium and americium on the minerals in tuffs. Sorption of elements by ion-exchange processes is high in tuffs containing smectite and the zeolites clinoptilolite-heulandite and mordenite. Moreover, sorption correlates with abundances of these minerals. Sorption is not as high for the zeolite analcime and for volcanic glass. Elements that may not sorb by ion exchange, e.g. plutonium, also tend to be sorbed when the zeolite abundance is high, but the correlations are less clearly defined. Because of the correlation between sorptive capacity and mineralogy, an accurate knowledge of mineral distribution and stratigraphy is essential. The distribution of hydrated glasses is stratigraphically controlled, and the glasses occur in narrow unaltered horizons as vitrophyres and as vitric tuff. Although glasses are of minor importance as sorptive phases, they are very reactive and can alter to other minerals if heated in the presence of water. Smectite clays are reversibly expandable and are widespread in tuffs, but their beneficial properties can be modified by prolonged exposure to elevated temperatures. The zeolites clinoptilolite-heulandite and mordenite occur in high concentrations in silicic tuffs, mostly as secondary alterations of non-welded and poorly welded tuffs; their distribution is therefore stratigraphically controlled

  2. Discernibility of Burial Mounds in High-Resolution X-Band SAR Images for Archaeological Prospections in the Altai Mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timo Balz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The Altai Mountains are a heritage-rich archaeological landscape with monuments in almost every valley. Modern nation state borders dissect the region and limit archaeological landscape analysis to intra-national areas of interest. Remote sensing can help to overcome these limitations. Due to its high precision, Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR data can be a very useful tool for supporting archaeological prospections, but compared to optical imagery, the detectability of sites of archaeological interest is limited. We analyzed the limitations of SAR using TerraSAR-X images in different modes. Based on ground truth, the discernibility of burial mounds was analyzed in different SAR acquisition modes. We show that very-high-resolution TerraSAR-X staring spotlight images are very well suited for the task, with >75% of the larger mounds being discernible, while in images with a lower spatial resolution only a few large sites can be detected, at rates below 50%.

  3. Assessment of the Suitability of High Resolution Numerical Weather Model Outputs for Hydrological Modelling in Mountainous Cold Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasouli, K.; Pomeroy, J. W.; Hayashi, M.; Fang, X.; Gutmann, E. D.; Li, Y.

    2017-12-01

    The hydrology of mountainous cold regions has a large spatial variability that is driven both by climate variability and near-surface process variability associated with complex terrain and patterns of vegetation, soils, and hydrogeology. There is a need to downscale large-scale atmospheric circulations towards the fine scales that cold regions hydrological processes operate at to assess their spatial variability in complex terrain and quantify uncertainties by comparison to field observations. In this research, three high resolution numerical weather prediction models, namely, the Intermediate Complexity Atmosphere Research (ICAR), Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF), and Global Environmental Multiscale (GEM) models are used to represent spatial and temporal patterns of atmospheric conditions appropriate for hydrological modelling. An area covering high mountains and foothills of the Canadian Rockies was selected to assess and compare high resolution ICAR (1 km × 1 km), WRF (4 km × 4 km), and GEM (2.5 km × 2.5 km) model outputs with station-based meteorological measurements. ICAR with very low computational cost was run with different initial and boundary conditions and with finer spatial resolution, which allowed an assessment of modelling uncertainty and scaling that was difficult with WRF. Results show that ICAR, when compared with WRF and GEM, performs very well in precipitation and air temperature modelling in the Canadian Rockies, while all three models show a fair performance in simulating wind and humidity fields. Representation of local-scale atmospheric dynamics leading to realistic fields of temperature and precipitation by ICAR, WRF, and GEM makes these models suitable for high resolution cold regions hydrological predictions in complex terrain, which is a key factor in estimating water security in western Canada.

  4. Magnetic investigations along selected high-resolution seismic traverses in the central block of Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ponce, D.A.; Sikora, R.F.; Roberts, C.W.; Morin, R.L.; Halvorson, P.F.

    1995-01-01

    Ground magnetic data collected along several traverses across the central block of Yucca Mountain in southwest Nevada are interpreted. These data were collected as part of an effort to evaluate faulting in the vicinity of a potential nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain. Magnetic data and models along traverses across the central block of Yucca Mountain reveal anomalies associated with known faults and indicate a number of possible concealed faults beneath the eastern flank of Yucca Mountain. The central part of the eastern flank of Yucca Mountain is characterized by numerous small-amplitude anomalies that probably reflect small-scale faulting. Magnetic modeling of the terrain along the eastern flank of Yucca Mountain indicates that terrain induced magnetic anomalies of about 100 to 150 nT are present along some profiles where steep terrain exists above the magnetometer

  5. High-resolution observations of the near-surface wind field over an isolated mountain and in a steep river canyon

    Science.gov (United States)

    B. W. Butler; N. S. Wagenbrenner; J. M. Forthofer; B. K. Lamb; K. S. Shannon; D. Finn; R. M. Eckman; K. Clawson; L. Bradshaw; P. Sopko; S. Beard; D. Jimenez; C. Wold; M. Vosburgh

    2015-01-01

    A number of numerical wind flow models have been developed for simulating wind flow at relatively fine spatial resolutions (e.g., 100 m); however, there are very limited observational data available for evaluating these high-resolution models. This study presents high-resolution surface wind data sets collected from an isolated mountain and a steep river canyon. The...

  6. Atmospheric Ice Nucleating Particle measurements at the high mountain observatory Mt. Cimone (2165 m a.s.l., Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinaldi, M.; Santachiara, G.; Nicosia, A.; Piazza, M.; Decesari, S.; Gilardoni, S.; Paglione, M.; Cristofanelli, P.; Marinoni, A.; Bonasoni, P.; Belosi, F.

    2017-12-01

    Measurement campaigns at the high mountain Observatory Mt. Cimone (CMN; 2165 m a.s.l.) were performed during May 2014 and October 2015. The concentration of Ice Nucleating Particles (INPs) were measured offline with a dynamic filter processing chamber (DFPC), in the deposition and condensation mode, after collecting PM1 and PM10 aerosol samples. Presented INP data are the first ever published for a high mountain site in the Mediterranean basin. During the May campaign, parallel INP measurements were also carried out at San Pietro Capofiume (SPC), a low altitude rural background area within the Po Valley basin, by the same offline technique. The average INPPM10 concentration at CMN was 86 m-3 (saturation ratio Sw = 1.01; T = -18 °C) during the May 2014 campaign, while it was 171 m-3 at SPC, in the same period. A lower average INPPM10 concentration was observed at CMN during October 2015 (43 m-3). A significantly higher activated fraction (AF) characterized the October 2015 campaign, suggesting that the seasonal changes in the aerosol sources have an impact on the INP efficiency of the aerosol at CMN. Super-micrometer INP contributed for ∼30% of total INP in the May 2014 campaign, at both sites, and for ∼70% in the October 2015 campaign, showing the importance of coarse particles in the INP population. The analysis of meteorological parameters, gaseous tracers concentrations and backwards trajectories suggests that the INP population at CMN is contributed by transport processes occurring at diverse spatial scales, from the local to the synoptic scale. During the Saharan Dust transport Event observed in May 2014, a reduction of the AF was observed, suggesting, for this case, a limited ice nucleating activity for Saharan dust particles. This may be due to physico-chemical aging of the Saharan dust particles during transport or to the relatively high activation temperature at which the experiments were performed in this study.

  7. Factors limiting microbial growth and activity at a proposed high-level nuclear repository, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kieft, T.L.; Kovacik, W.P. Jr.; Ringelberg, D.B.; White, D.C.; Haldeman, D.L.; Amy, P.S.; Hersman, L.E.

    1997-01-01

    As part of the characterization of Yucca Mountain, Nev., as a potential repository for high-level nuclear waste, volcanic tuff was analyzed for microbial abundance and activity. Tuff was collected aseptically from nine sites along a tunnel in Yucca Mountain. Microbial abundance was generally low: direct microscopic cell counts were near detection limits at all sites (3.2 X 10(1) to 2.0 X 10(5) cells g-1 [dry weight]); plate counts of aerobic heterotrophs ranged from 1.0 X 10(1) to 3.2 X 10(3) CFU g-1 (dry weight). Phospholipid fatty acid concentrations (0.1 to 3.7 pmol g-1) also indicated low microbial biomasses: diglyceride fatty acid concentrations, indicative of dead cells, were in a similar range (0.2 to 2.3 pmol g-1). Potential microbial activity was quantified as 14CO2 production in microcosms containing radiolabeled substrates (glucose, acetate, and glutamic acid); amendments with water and nutrient solutions (N and P) were used to test factors potentially limiting this activity. Similarly, the potential for microbial growth and the factors limiting growth were determined by performing plate counts before and after incubating volcanic tuff samples for 24 h under various conditions: ambient moisture, water-amended, and amended with various nutrient solutions (N, P, and organic C). A high potential for microbial activity was demonstrated by high rates of substrate mineralization (as much as 70% of added organic C in 3 weeks). Water was the major limiting factor to growth and microbial activity, while amendments with N and P resulted in little further stimulation. Organic C amendments stimulated growth more than water alone

  8. High-levels of microplastic pollution in a large, remote, mountain lake

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Free, Christopher M.; Jensen, Olaf P.; Mason, Sherri A.; Eriksen, Marcus; Williamson, Nicholas J.; Boldgiv, Bazartseren

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • We quantified pelagic microplastic pollution in Lake Hovsgol, Mongolia. • Lake Hovsgol is more polluted with microplastics than Lakes Huron and Superior. • Microplastics came from consumer goods; no microbeads/few pellets were observed. • Microplastics were sourced from population centers and distributed by the winds. • Without waste management, even small populations can heavily pollute large lakes. - Abstract: Despite the large and growing literature on microplastics in the ocean, little information exists on microplastics in freshwater systems. This study is the first to evaluate the abundance, distribution, and composition of pelagic microplastic pollution in a large, remote, mountain lake. We quantified pelagic microplastics and shoreline anthropogenic debris in Lake Hovsgol, Mongolia. With an average microplastic density of 20,264 particles km −2 , Lake Hovsgol is more heavily polluted with microplastics than the more developed Lakes Huron and Superior in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Fragments and films were the most abundant microplastic types; no plastic microbeads and few pellets were observed. Household plastics dominated the shoreline debris and were comprised largely of plastic bottles, fishing gear, and bags. Microplastic density decreased with distance from the southwestern shore, the most populated and accessible section of the park, and was distributed by the prevailing winds. These results demonstrate that without proper waste management, low-density populations can heavily pollute freshwater systems with consumer plastics

  9. Food web of a tropical high mountain stream: Effects of nutrient addition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Castro Rebolledo, Maria Isabel; Munoz Gracia, Isabel; Donato Rondon, John Charles

    2014-01-01

    Using a nutrient enrichment experiment in an Andean mountain stream, we used stable isotope ratios (δ 15n and δ13c) to analyze different trophic compartments: 1) basal level: CPOM and biofilm; 2) primary consumers - macro invertebrates: collector-gatherers(heterelmissp, thraulodessp andtrichorythodessp), and collector-filterers (simuliumsp); 3) predators - fish (oncorhynchusmykiss and trichomycterusbogotensis). the average fractionation of nitrogen among the primary consumers with respect to CPOM was 4.7 and 1.7 with respect to biofilm. predators incremented their δ15n signal by 5.9% with respect to primary consumers. A depletion of δ15n was observed in impact with respect to control reach after fertilization in different compartments (biofilm, heterelmissp., simuliumsp. andtricorythodessp.), while depletion was not significant for top predators. In most cases, the δ13c signal of biofilm overlapped with that of primary consumers, but a clear enrichment was observed with respect to CPOM. The macro invertebrates referred to were selected to analyze their gut content and the results showed us that fine detritus is the most abundant food in invertebrates, and onlyheterelmis sp. showed significant differences in fine detritus and vegetal matter between control and impact reaches after the nutrient addition.

  10. Fine-scale mapping of vector habitats using very high resolution satellite imagery: a liver fluke case-study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Roeck, Els; Van Coillie, Frieke; De Wulf, Robert; Soenen, Karen; Charlier, Johannes; Vercruysse, Jozef; Hantson, Wouter; Ducheyne, Els; Hendrickx, Guy

    2014-12-01

    The visualization of vector occurrence in space and time is an important aspect of studying vector-borne diseases. Detailed maps of possible vector habitats provide valuable information for the prediction of infection risk zones but are currently lacking for most parts of the world. Nonetheless, monitoring vector habitats from the finest scales up to farm level is of key importance to refine currently existing broad-scale infection risk models. Using Fasciola hepatica, a parasite liver fluke, as a case in point, this study illustrates the potential of very high resolution (VHR) optical satellite imagery to efficiently and semi-automatically detect detailed vector habitats. A WorldView2 satellite image capable of transmitted by freshwater snails. The vector thrives in small water bodies (SWBs), such as ponds, ditches and other humid areas consisting of open water, aquatic vegetation and/or inundated grass. These water bodies can be as small as a few m2 and are most often not present on existing land cover maps because of their small size. We present a classification procedure based on object-based image analysis (OBIA) that proved valuable to detect SWBs at a fine scale in an operational and semi-automated way. The classification results were compared to field and other reference data such as existing broad-scale maps and expert knowledge. Overall, the SWB detection accuracy reached up to 87%. The resulting fine-scale SWB map can be used as input for spatial distribution modelling of the liver fluke snail vector to enable development of improved infection risk mapping and management advice adapted to specific, local farm situations.

  11. Preliminary total-system analysis of a potential high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eslinger, P.W.; Doremus, L.A.; Engel, D.W.; Miley, T.B.; Murphy, M.T.; Nichols, W.E.; White, M.D.; Langford, D.W.; Ouderkirk, S.J.

    1993-01-01

    The placement of high-level radioactive wastes in minded repositories deep underground is considered a disposal method that would effectively isolate these wastes from the environment for long periods of time. This report describes modeling performed at PNL for Yucca Mountain between May and November 1991 addressing the performance of the entire repository system related to regulatory criteria established by the EPA in 40 CFR Part 191. The geologic stratigraphy and material properties used in this study were chosen in cooperation with performance assessment modelers at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL). Sandia modeled a similar problem using different computer codes and a different modeling philosophy. Pacific Northwest Laboratory performed a few model runs with very complex models, and SNL performed many runs with much simpler (abstracted) models

  12. Essential oil composition, phytotoxic and antifungal activities of Ruta chalepensis L. leaves from High Atlas Mountains (Morocco).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouajaj, Sana; Romane, Abderrahmane; Benyamna, Abdennaji; Amri, Ismail; Hanana, Mohsen; Hamrouni, Lamia; Romdhane, Mehrez

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed at the determination of chemical composition of essential oil obtained by hydrodistillation, and to evaluate their phytotoxic and antifungal activities. Leaves of Ruta chalepensis L. were collected from the region of Tensift Al Haouz (High Atlas Mountains) Marrakech, Morocco. The essential oil (oil yield is 0.56%) was analysed by GC-FID and GC/MS. Twenty-two compounds were identified and accounted for 92.4% of the total oil composition. The major components were undecan-2-one (49.08%), nonan-2-one (33.15%), limonene (4.19%) and decanone (2.71%). Antifungal ability of essential oils was tested by disc agar diffusion against five plant pathogenic fungi: Fusarium proliferatum, Fusarium pseudograminearum, Fusarium culmorum, Fusarium graminearum and Fusarium polyphialidicum. The oils were also tested in vitro for herbicidal activity by determining their influence on the germination and the shoot and root growth of two weed species, Triticum durum and Phalaris canariensis L.

  13. Preliminary total-system analysis of a potential high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eslinger, P.W.; Doremus, L.A.; Engel, D.W.; Miley, T.B.; Murphy, M.T.; Nichols, W.E.; White, M.D. [Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA (United States); Langford, D.W.; Ouderkirk, S.J. [Westinghouse Hanford Co., Richland, WA (United States)

    1993-01-01

    The placement of high-level radioactive wastes in mined repositories deep underground is considered a disposal method that would effectively isolate these wastes from the environment for long periods of time. This report describes modeling performed at PNL for Yucca Mountain between May and November 1991 addressing the performance of the entire repository system related to regulatory criteria established by the EPA in 40 CFR Part 191. The geologic stratigraphy and material properties used in this study were chosen in cooperation with performance assessment modelers at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL). Sandia modeled a similar problem using different computer codes and a different modeling philosophy. Pacific Northwest Laboratory performed a few model runs with very complex models, and SNL performed many runs with much simpler (abstracted) models.

  14. Analogues to features and processes of a high-level radioactive waste repository proposed for Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Ardyth M.; Stuckless, John S.; with a Foreword by Abraham Van Luik, U.S. Department of Energy

    2010-01-01

    Natural analogues are defined for this report as naturally occurring or anthropogenic systems in which processes similar to those expected to occur in a nuclear waste repository are thought to have taken place over time periods of decades to millennia and on spatial scales as much as tens of kilometers. Analogues provide an important temporal and spatial dimension that cannot be tested by laboratory or field-scale experiments. Analogues provide one of the multiple lines of evidence intended to increase confidence in the safe geologic disposal of high-level radioactive waste. Although the work in this report was completed specifically for Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as the proposed geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste under the U.S. Nuclear Waste Policy Act, the applicability of the science, analyses, and interpretations is not limited to a specific site. Natural and anthropogenic analogues have provided and can continue to provide value in understanding features and processes of importance across a wide variety of topics in addressing the challenges of geologic isolation of radioactive waste and also as a contribution to scientific investigations unrelated to waste disposal. Isolation of radioactive waste at a mined geologic repository would be through a combination of natural features and engineered barriers. In this report we examine analogues to many of the various components of the Yucca Mountain system, including the preservation of materials in unsaturated environments, flow of water through unsaturated volcanic tuff, seepage into repository drifts, repository drift stability, stability and alteration of waste forms and components of the engineered barrier system, and transport of radionuclides through unsaturated and saturated rock zones.

  15. Polyploidisation and Geographic Differentiation Drive Diversification in a European High Mountain Plant Group (Doronicum clusii Aggregate, Asteraceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pachschwöll, Clemens; Escobar García, Pedro; Winkler, Manuela; Schneeweiss, Gerald M.; Schönswetter, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Range shifts (especially during the Pleistocene), polyploidisation and hybridization are major factors affecting high-mountain biodiversity. A good system to study their role in the European high mountains is the Doronicum clusii aggregate (Asteraceae), whose four taxa (D. clusii s.s., D. stiriacum, D. glaciale subsp. glaciale and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum) are differentiated geographically, ecologically (basiphilous versus silicicolous) and/or via their ploidy levels (diploid versus tetraploid). Here, we use DNA sequences (three plastid and one nuclear spacer) and AFLP fingerprinting data generated for 58 populations to infer phylogenetic relationships, origin of polyploids—whose ploidy level was confirmed by chromosomally calibrated DNA ploidy level estimates—and phylogeographic history. Taxonomic conclusions were informed, among others, by a Gaussian clustering method for species delimitation using dominant multilocus data. Based on molecular data we identified three lineages: (i) silicicolous diploid D. clusii s.s. in the Alps, (ii) silicicolous tetraploid D. stiriacum in the eastern Alps (outside the range of D. clusii s.s.) and the Carpathians and (iii) the basiphilous diploids D. glaciale subsp. glaciale (eastern Alps) and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum (northeastern Alps); each taxon was identified as distinct by the Gaussian clustering, but the separation of D. glaciale subsp. calcareum and D. glaciale subsp. glaciale was not stable, supporting their taxonomic treatment as subspecies. Carpathian and Alpine populations of D. stiriacum were genetically differentiated suggesting phases of vicariance, probably during the Pleistocene. The origin (autopolyploid versus allopolyploid) of D. stiriacum remained unclear. Doronicum glaciale subsp. calcareum was genetically and morphologically weakly separated from D. glaciale subsp. glaciale but exhibited significantly higher genetic diversity and rarity. This suggests that the more widespread D. glaciale subsp

  16. Polyploidisation and geographic differentiation drive diversification in a European High Mountain Plant Group (Doronicum clusii Aggregate, Asteraceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pachschwöll, Clemens; Escobar García, Pedro; Winkler, Manuela; Schneeweiss, Gerald M; Schönswetter, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Range shifts (especially during the Pleistocene), polyploidisation and hybridization are major factors affecting high-mountain biodiversity. A good system to study their role in the European high mountains is the Doronicum clusii aggregate (Asteraceae), whose four taxa (D. clusii s.s., D. stiriacum, D. glaciale subsp. glaciale and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum) are differentiated geographically, ecologically (basiphilous versus silicicolous) and/or via their ploidy levels (diploid versus tetraploid). Here, we use DNA sequences (three plastid and one nuclear spacer) and AFLP fingerprinting data generated for 58 populations to infer phylogenetic relationships, origin of polyploids-whose ploidy level was confirmed by chromosomally calibrated DNA ploidy level estimates-and phylogeographic history. Taxonomic conclusions were informed, among others, by a Gaussian clustering method for species delimitation using dominant multilocus data. Based on molecular data we identified three lineages: (i) silicicolous diploid D. clusii s.s. in the Alps, (ii) silicicolous tetraploid D. stiriacum in the eastern Alps (outside the range of D. clusii s.s.) and the Carpathians and (iii) the basiphilous diploids D. glaciale subsp. glaciale (eastern Alps) and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum (northeastern Alps); each taxon was identified as distinct by the Gaussian clustering, but the separation of D. glaciale subsp. calcareum and D. glaciale subsp. glaciale was not stable, supporting their taxonomic treatment as subspecies. Carpathian and Alpine populations of D. stiriacum were genetically differentiated suggesting phases of vicariance, probably during the Pleistocene. The origin (autopolyploid versus allopolyploid) of D. stiriacum remained unclear. Doronicum glaciale subsp. calcareum was genetically and morphologically weakly separated from D. glaciale subsp. glaciale but exhibited significantly higher genetic diversity and rarity. This suggests that the more widespread D. glaciale subsp

  17. Polyploidisation and geographic differentiation drive diversification in a European High Mountain Plant Group (Doronicum clusii Aggregate, Asteraceae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clemens Pachschwöll

    Full Text Available Range shifts (especially during the Pleistocene, polyploidisation and hybridization are major factors affecting high-mountain biodiversity. A good system to study their role in the European high mountains is the Doronicum clusii aggregate (Asteraceae, whose four taxa (D. clusii s.s., D. stiriacum, D. glaciale subsp. glaciale and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum are differentiated geographically, ecologically (basiphilous versus silicicolous and/or via their ploidy levels (diploid versus tetraploid. Here, we use DNA sequences (three plastid and one nuclear spacer and AFLP fingerprinting data generated for 58 populations to infer phylogenetic relationships, origin of polyploids-whose ploidy level was confirmed by chromosomally calibrated DNA ploidy level estimates-and phylogeographic history. Taxonomic conclusions were informed, among others, by a Gaussian clustering method for species delimitation using dominant multilocus data. Based on molecular data we identified three lineages: (i silicicolous diploid D. clusii s.s. in the Alps, (ii silicicolous tetraploid D. stiriacum in the eastern Alps (outside the range of D. clusii s.s. and the Carpathians and (iii the basiphilous diploids D. glaciale subsp. glaciale (eastern Alps and D. glaciale subsp. calcareum (northeastern Alps; each taxon was identified as distinct by the Gaussian clustering, but the separation of D. glaciale subsp. calcareum and D. glaciale subsp. glaciale was not stable, supporting their taxonomic treatment as subspecies. Carpathian and Alpine populations of D. stiriacum were genetically differentiated suggesting phases of vicariance, probably during the Pleistocene. The origin (autopolyploid versus allopolyploid of D. stiriacum remained unclear. Doronicum glaciale subsp. calcareum was genetically and morphologically weakly separated from D. glaciale subsp. glaciale but exhibited significantly higher genetic diversity and rarity. This suggests that the more widespread D. glaciale

  18. Intensive precipitation observation greatly improves hydrological modelling of the poorly gauged high mountain Mabengnong catchment in the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Li; Zhang, Fan; Zhang, Hongbo; Scott, Christopher A.; Zeng, Chen; Shi, Xiaonan

    2018-01-01

    Precipitation is one of the most critical inputs for models used to improve understanding of hydrological processes. In high mountain areas, it is challenging to generate a reliable precipitation data set capturing the spatial and temporal heterogeneity due to the harsh climate, extreme terrain and the lack of observations. This study conducts intensive observation of precipitation in the Mabengnong catchment in the southeast of the Tibetan Plateau during July to August 2013. Because precipitation is greatly influenced by altitude, the observed data are used to characterize the precipitation gradient (PG) and hourly distribution (HD), showing that the average PG is 0.10, 0.28 and 0.26 mm/d/100 m and the average duration is around 0.1, 0.8 and 5.2 h for trace, light and moderate rain, respectively. A distributed biosphere hydrological model based on water and energy budgets with improved physical process for snow (WEB-DHM-S) is applied to simulate the hydrological processes with gridded precipitation data derived from a lower altitude meteorological station and the PG and HD characterized for the study area. The observed runoff, MODIS/Terra snow cover area (SCA) data, and MODIS/Terra land surface temperature (LST) data are used for model calibration and validation. Runoff, SCA and LST simulations all show reasonable results. Sensitivity analyses illustrate that runoff is largely underestimated without considering PG, indicating that short-term intensive precipitation observation has the potential to greatly improve hydrological modelling of poorly gauged high mountain catchments.

  19. Fish Habitat and Fish Populations in a Southern Appalachian Watershed before and after Hurricane Hugo

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. Andrew Dolloff; Patricia A. Flebbe; Michael D. Owen

    1994-01-01

    Habitat features and relative abundance of all fish species were estimated in 8.4 km of a small mountain stream system before and 11 months after Hurricane Hugo crossed the southern Appalachians in September 1989. There was no change in the total amount (area) of each habitat type but the total number of habitat units decreased and average size and depth of habitat...

  20. Mountaineering Tourism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Maher

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: Mountaineering Tourism Edited by Ghazali Musa, James Higham, and Anna Thompson-Carr. Abingdon, United Kingdom: Routledge, 2015. xxvi + 358 pp. Hardcover. US$ 145.00. ISBN 978-1-138-78237-2.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Schleuning

    2012-12-01

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

  2. Breeding loggerhead marine turtles Caretta caretta in Dry Tortugas National Park, USA, show high fidelity to diverse habitats near nesting beaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart, Kristen M.; Zawada, David G.; Sartain-Iverson, Autumn R.; Fujisaki, Ikuko

    2016-01-01

    We used satellite telemetry to identify in-water habitat used by individuals in the smallest North-west Atlantic subpopulation of adult nesting loggerhead turtles Caretta caretta during the breeding season. During 2010, 2011 and 2012 breeding periods, a total of 20 adult females used habitats proximal to nesting beaches with various levels of protection within Dry Tortugas National Park. We then used a rapid, high-resolution, digital imaging system to map habitat adjacent to nesting beaches, revealing the diversity and distribution of available benthic cover. Turtle behaviour showing measurable site-fidelity to these diverse habitats has implications for managing protected areas and human activities within them. Protecting diverse benthic areas adjacent to loggerhead turtle nesting beaches here and elsewhere could provide benefits for overall biodiversity conservation.

  3. Hydrological peculiarities of high mountain basins: the case of the Spanish Pyrenees

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ferrer Castillo, Cesar; Alonso-Muiioyerro, Justo Mora; Parra, Miguel Arenillas; Campos, Guillermo Cobos

    2004-01-01

    The exploitation of a reservoir is determined by the availability of information within which the information provided by hydrological information systems must be included. This should be complemented, especially in flood circumstances, by meteorological forecasts and the results obtained by from hydrological and hydraulic simulation and forecasting models. In mountain basins with marked influence of snow, specific hydrological modelling is necessary, permitting simulation of the phenomenon of snow runoff. In particular, the hydrology of the basin of the River Ebro (Spain) is clearly influenced by this phenomenon. This basin is affected by flood situations caused by rapid melt of the snow accumulated on its Pyrenean slopes. This has brought about the need for a specific study to be undertaken in order to facilitate greater understanding and control. Additionally, the volume of accumulated snow in the catchment areas determines the management and everyday exploitation of the reservoirs for the achievement of maximum yield from water resources. This interest in the understanding of snow phenomena has given rise to numerous studies in the Pyrenean area: field study campaigns to carry out point measurements of thickness and density, hydrological-statistical modelling for the forecasting of melts and course flows and the development and application of hydrological simulation models. In the Pyrenean slopes basin the ASTER model has been applied to the reservoir of Yesa during a period of more than five years, achieving quite satisfactory results with regard to watercourse flow forecasting and the volume of water stored in the form of snow. This has enabled appropriate management of the reservoir during flood circumstances - minimising possible damage as well as under everyday conditions. The results obtained from this period have led to the generalisation of the ASTER model to apply to all sources of the Pyrenean tributaries of the Ebro with clear snow influence and

  4. Sand quarry wetlands provide high-quality habitat for native amphibians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Sievers

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic disturbances to habitats influence the fitness of individual animals, the abundance of their populations, and the composition of their communities. Wetlands in particular are frequently degraded and destroyed, impacting the animals that inhabit these important ecosystems. The creation of wetlands during and following sand extraction processes is inevitable, and thus, sand quarries have the potential to support aquatic animals. To determine how amphibians utilise these wetlands, I conducted nocturnal call surveys at wetlands within the Kables Sands quarry, New South Wales, Australia, and within surrounding reference wetlands, and quantified levels of developmental instability (DI as a proxy for fitness. Whilst quarry and reference wetlands were largely similar in terms of environmental characteristics, quarry wetlands consistently harboured more amphibian species and individuals. Using unsigned asymmetry as a measure of DI, frogs from the quarry sites exhibited significantly lower levels of DI compared to reference wetlands, indicating that quarry wetlands may be comparatively higher quality. Levels of DI within quarry wetlands also compared favourably to data from healthy frog populations extracted from the literature. Further enhancing the suitability of quarry wetlands would require minimal effort, with potentially significant increases in local and regional biodiversity. Documenting species presence and quantifying individual fitness by measuring limb lengths is an economically and logistically feasible method to assess the health of quarry wetlands. Overall, the methods outlined here provide a powerful, yet simple, tool to assess the overall health and suitability of quarry wetlands that could be easily adopted at quarries throughout the world.

  5. Acclimatization to high-variance habitats does not enhance physiological tolerance of two key Caribbean corals to future temperature and pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camp, Emma F; Smith, David J; Evenhuis, Chris; Enochs, Ian; Manzello, Derek; Woodcock, Stephen; Suggett, David J

    2016-05-25

    Corals are acclimatized to populate dynamic habitats that neighbour coral reefs. Habitats such as seagrass beds exhibit broad diel changes in temperature and pH that routinely expose corals to conditions predicted for reefs over the next 50-100 years. However, whether such acclimatization effectively enhances physiological tolerance to, and hence provides refuge against, future climate scenarios remains unknown. Also, whether corals living in low-variance habitats can tolerate present-day high-variance conditions remains untested. We experimentally examined how pH and temperature predicted for the year 2100 affects the growth and physiology of two dominant Caribbean corals (Acropora palmata and Porites astreoides) native to habitats with intrinsically low (outer-reef terrace, LV) and/or high (neighbouring seagrass, HV) environmental variance. Under present-day temperature and pH, growth and metabolic rates (calcification, respiration and photosynthesis) were unchanged for HV versus LV populations. Superimposing future climate scenarios onto the HV and LV conditions did not result in any enhanced tolerance to colonies native to HV. Calcification rates were always lower for elevated temperature and/or reduced pH. Together, these results suggest that seagrass habitats may not serve as refugia against climate change if the magnitude of future temperature and pH changes is equivalent to neighbouring reef habitats. © 2016 The Author(s).

  6. YUCCA MOUNTAIN SITE DESCRIPTION

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simmons, A.M.

    2004-01-01

    The ''Yucca Mountain Site Description'' summarizes, in a single document, the current state of knowledge and understanding of the natural system at Yucca Mountain. It describes the geology; geochemistry; past, present, and projected future climate; regional hydrologic system; and flow and transport within the unsaturated and saturated zones at the site. In addition, it discusses factors affecting radionuclide transport, the effect of thermal loading on the natural system, and tectonic hazards. The ''Yucca Mountain Site Description'' is broad in nature. It summarizes investigations carried out as part of the Yucca Mountain Project since 1988, but it also includes work done at the site in earlier years, as well as studies performed by others. The document has been prepared under the Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management quality assurance program for the Yucca Mountain Project. Yucca Mountain is located in Nye County in southern Nevada. The site lies in the north-central part of the Basin and Range physiographic province, within the northernmost subprovince commonly referred to as the Great Basin. The basin and range physiography reflects the extensional tectonic regime that has affected the region during the middle and late Cenozoic Era. Yucca Mountain was initially selected for characterization, in part, because of its thick unsaturated zone, its arid to semiarid climate, and the existence of a rock type that would support excavation of stable openings. In 1987, the United States Congress directed that Yucca Mountain be the only site characterized to evaluate its suitability for development of a geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel

  7. YUCCA MOUNTAIN SITE DESCRIPTION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    A.M. Simmons

    2004-04-16

    The ''Yucca Mountain Site Description'' summarizes, in a single document, the current state of knowledge and understanding of the natural system at Yucca Mountain. It describes the geology; geochemistry; past, present, and projected future climate; regional hydrologic system; and flow and transport within the unsaturated and saturated zones at the site. In addition, it discusses factors affecting radionuclide transport, the effect of thermal loading on the natural system, and tectonic hazards. The ''Yucca Mountain Site Description'' is broad in nature. It summarizes investigations carried out as part of the Yucca Mountain Project since 1988, but it also includes work done at the site in earlier years, as well as studies performed by others. The document has been prepared under the Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management quality assurance program for the Yucca Mountain Project. Yucca Mountain is located in Nye County in southern Nevada. The site lies in the north-central part of the Basin and Range physiographic province, within the northernmost subprovince commonly referred to as the Great Basin. The basin and range physiography reflects the extensional tectonic regime that has affected the region during the middle and late Cenozoic Era. Yucca Mountain was initially selected for characterization, in part, because of its thick unsaturated zone, its arid to semiarid climate, and the existence of a rock type that would support excavation of stable openings. In 1987, the United States Congress directed that Yucca Mountain be the only site characterized to evaluate its suitability for development of a geologic repository for high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel.

  8. Snow as a habitat for microorganisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoham, Ronald W.

    1989-01-01

    There are three major habitats involving ice and snow, and the microorganisms studied from these habitats are most eukaryotic. Sea ice is inhabited by algae called diatoms, glacial ice has sparse populations of green algai cal desmids, and the temporary and permanent snows in mountainous regions and high latitudes are inhabited mostly by green algal flagellates. The life cycle of green algal flagellates is summarized by discussing the effects of light, temperature, nutrients, and snow melts. Specific examples of optimal conditions and environmental effects for various snow algae are given. It is not likely that the eukaryotic snow algae presented are candidated for life on the planet Mars. Evolutionally, eukaryotic cells as know on Earth may not have had the opportunity to develop on Mars (if life evolved at all on Mars) since eukaryotes did not appear on Earth until almost two billion years after the first prokaryotic organisms. However, the snow/ice ecosystems on Earth present themselves as extreme habitats were there is evidence of prokaryotic life (eubacteria and cyanbacteria) of which literally nothing is known. Any future surveillances of extant and/or extinct life on Mars should include probes (if not landing sites) to investigate sites of concentrations of ice water. The possibility of signs of life in Martian polar regions should not be overlooked.

  9. Shallow food for deep divers: Dynamic foraging behavior of male sperm whales in a high latitude habitat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teloni, Valeria; Johnson, M.P.; Miller, P.J.O.

    2008-01-01

    Groups of female and immature sperm whales live at low latitudes and show a stereotypical diving and foraging behavior with dives lasting about 45 min to depths of between 400 and 1200 m. In comparison, physically mature male sperm whales migrate to high latitudes where little is known about...... their foraging behavior and ecology. Here we use acoustic recording tags to study the diving and acoustic behavior of male sperm whales foraging off northern Norway. Sixty-five hours of tag data provide detailed information about the movements and sound repertoire of four male sperm whales performing 83 dives...... epipelagic prey, is consistent with the hypothesis that male sperm whales may migrate to high latitudes to access a productive, multi-layered foraging habitat....

  10. Pre-construction geologic section along the cross drift through the potential high-level radioactive waste repository, Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Potter, C.J.; Day, W.C.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Juan, C.S.; Drake, R.M. II

    1998-01-01

    As part of the Site Characterization effort for the US Department of Energy's Yucca Mountain Project, tunnels excavated by tunnel boring machines provide access to the volume of rock that is under consideration for possible underground storage of high-level nuclear waste beneath Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The Exploratory Studies Facility, a 7.8-km-long, 7.6-m-diameter tunnel, has been excavated, and a 2.8-km-long, 5-m-diameter Cross Drift will be excavated in 1998 as part of the geologic, hydrologic and geotechnical evaluation of the potential repository. The southwest-trending Cross Drift branches off of the north ramp of the horseshoe-shaped Exploratory Studies Facility. This report summarizes an interpretive geologic section that was prepared for the Yucca Mountain Project as a tool for use in the design and construction of the Cross Drift

  11. Effects of Climate Change on Habitat Availability and Configuration for an Endemic Coastal Alpine Bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle M Jackson

    Full Text Available North America's coastal mountains are particularly vulnerable to climate change, yet harbour a number of endemic species. With little room "at the top" to track shifting climate envelopes, alpine species may be especially negatively affected by climate-induced habitat fragmentation. We ask how climate change will affect the total amount, mean patch size, and number of patches of suitable habitat for Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan (Lagopus leucura saxatilis; VIWTP, a threatened, endemic alpine bird. Using a Random Forest model and a unique dataset consisting of citizen science observations combined with field surveys, we predict the distribution and configuration of potential suitable summer habitat for VIWTP under baseline and future (2020s, 2050s, and 2080s climates using three general circulation models and two greenhouse gas scenarios. VIWTP summer habitat is predicted to decline by an average of 25%, 44%, and 56% by the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s, respectively, under the low greenhouse gas scenario and 27%, 59%, and 74% under the high scenario. Habitat patches are predicted to become fragmented, with a 52-79% reduction in mean patch size. The average elevation of suitable habitat patches is expected to increase, reflecting a loss of patches at lower elevations. Thus ptarmigan are in danger of being "squeezed off the mountain", as their remaining suitable habitat will be increasingly confined to mountaintops in the center of the island. The extent to which ptarmigan will be able to persist in increasingly fragmented habitat is unclear. Much will depend on their ability to move throughout a more heterogeneous landscape, utilize smaller breeding areas, and survive increasingly variable climate extremes. Our results emphasize the importance of continued monitoring and protection for high elevation specialist species, and suggest that White-tailed Ptarmigan should be considered an indicator species for alpine ecosystems in the face of

  12. The genetic structure of the mountain forest butterfly Erebia euryale unravels the late Pleistocene and postglacial history of the mountain coniferous forest biome in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Thomas; Haubrich, Karola

    2008-05-01

    The distribution of the mountain coniferous forest biome in Europe throughout time is not sufficiently understood. One character species of this habitat type is the large ringlet, Erebia euryale well reflecting the extension of this biome today, and the genetic differentiation of this species among and within mountain systems may unravel the late Pleistocene history of this habitat type. We therefore analysed the allozyme pattern of 381 E. euryale individuals from 11 populations in four different European mountain systems (Pyrenees, Alps, Carpathians, Rila). All loci analysed were polymorphic. The mean F(ST) over all samples was high (20%). Furthermore, the mean genetic distance among samples was quite high (0.049). We found four different groups well supported by cluster analyses, bootstraps and hierarchical variance analyses: Pyrenees, western Alps, eastern Alps and southeastern Europe (Carpathians and Rila). The genetic diversity of the populations was highest in the southeastern European group and stepwise decreased westwards. Interestingly, the populations from Bulgaria and Romania were almost identical; therefore, we assume that they were not separated by the Danube Valley, at least during the last ice age. On the contrary, the differentiation among the three western Alps populations was considerable. For all these reasons, we assume that (i) the most important refugial area for the coniferous mountain forest biome in Europe has been located in southeastern Europe including at least parts of the Carpathians and the Bulgarian mountains; (ii) important refugial areas for this biome existed at the southeastern edge of the Alps; (iii) fragments of this habitat types survived along the southwestern Alps, but in a more scattered distribution; and (iv) relatively small relicts have persisted somewhere at the foothills of the Pyrenees.

  13. A test of high-dose verbenone for stand-level protection of lodgepole and whitebark pine from mountain pine beetle (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) attacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    B. J. Bentz; S. Kegley; K. Gibson; R. Their

    2005-01-01

    The effcacy of verbenone as a stand-level protectant against mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins, attacks was tested in lodgepole and whitebark pine stands at five geographically separated sites, including three consecutive years at one site. Forty and 20 high-dose pouches, with a verbenone emission rate up to 50 mg/d per pouch, were spaced in a grid...

  14. Proposed nomination of Yucca Mountain as a potential high-level radioactive waste repository. Correspondence and request for oral presentations for US Department of Energy public hearings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1983-01-01

    This volume contains correspondence and requests by the public citizens for oral presentation at the public hearings for the proposed nomination of Yucca Mountain as a potential high-level radioactive waste repository. Written comments are also included on: the proposed nomination; the issues to be addressed in the Environmental Assessment; and the issues to be addressed by any Site Characterization Plan, if developed

  15. Assessing Greater Sage-Grouse Selection of Brood-Rearing Habitat Using Remotely-Sensed Imagery: Can Readily Available High-Resolution Imagery Be Used to Identify Brood-Rearing Habitat Across a Broad Landscape?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westover, Matthew; Baxter, Jared; Baxter, Rick; Day, Casey; Jensen, Ryan; Petersen, Steve; Larsen, Randy

    2016-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse populations have decreased steadily since European settlement in western North America. Reduced availability of brood-rearing habitat has been identified as a limiting factor for many populations. We used radio-telemetry to acquire locations of sage-grouse broods from 1998 to 2012 in Strawberry Valley, Utah. Using these locations and remotely-sensed NAIP (National Agricultural Imagery Program) imagery, we 1) determined which characteristics of brood-rearing habitat could be used in widely available, high resolution imagery 2) assessed the spatial extent at which sage-grouse selected brood-rearing habitat, and 3) created a predictive habitat model to identify areas of preferred brood-rearing habitat. We used AIC model selection to evaluate support for a list of variables derived from remotely-sensed imagery. We examined the relationship of these explanatory variables at three spatial extents (45, 200, and 795 meter radii). Our top model included 10 variables (percent shrub, percent grass, percent tree, percent paved road, percent riparian, meters of sage/tree edge, meters of riparian/tree edge, distance to tree, distance to transmission lines, and distance to permanent structures). Variables from each spatial extent were represented in our top model with the majority being associated with the larger (795 meter) spatial extent. When applied to our study area, our top model predicted 75% of naïve brood locations suggesting reasonable success using this method and widely available NAIP imagery. We encourage application of our methodology to other sage-grouse populations and species of conservation concern.

  16. UAV based 3D digital surface model to estimate paleolandscape in high mountainous environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mészáros, János; Árvai, Mátyás; Kohán, Balázs; Deák, Márton; Nagy, Balázs

    2016-04-01

    Our method to present current state of a peat bog was focused on the possible use of a UAV-system and later Structure-from-motion algorithms as processing technique. The peat bog site is located on the Vinderel Plateau, Farcǎu Massif, Maramures Mountains (Romania). The peat bog (1530 m a.s.l., N47°54'11", E24°26'37") lies below Rugasu ridge (c. 1820 m a.s.l.) and the locality serves as a conservation area for fallen down coniferous trees. Peat deposits were formed in a landslide concavity on the western slope of Farcǎu Massif. Nowadays the site is surrounded by a completely deforested landscape, and Farcǎu Massif lies above the depressed treeline. The peat bog has an extraordinary geomorphological situation, because a gully reached the bog and drained the water. In the recent past sedimentological and dendrochronological researches have been initiated. However, an accurate 3D digital surface model also needed for a complex paleoenvironmental research. Last autumn the bog and its surroundings were finally surveyed by a multirotor UAV developed in-house based on an open-source flight management unit and its firmware. During this survey a lightweight action camera (mainly to decrease payload weight) was used to take aerial photographs. While our quadcopter is capable to fly automatically on a predefined flight route, several over- and sidelapping flight lines were generated prior to the actual survey on the ground using a control software running on a notebook. Despite those precautions, limited number of batteries and severe weather affected our final flights, resulting a reduced surveyed area around peat bog. Later, during the processing we looked for a reliable tool which powerful enough to process more than 500 photos taken during flights. After testing several software Agisoft PhotoScan was used to create 3D point cloud and mesh about bog and its environment. Due to large number of photographs PhotoScan had to be configured for network processing to get

  17. Mountain Warfare: The Need for Specialist Training

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Malik, Muhammad

    2003-01-01

    This study focuses on the need for specialist training for mountain warfare. It analyzes the special characteristics of mountain and high altitude terrain which affect conduct of military operations...

  18. A vegetation description and floristic analyses of the springs on the Kammanassie Mountain, Western Cape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Cleaver

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available The Kammanassie Mountain is a declared mountain catchment area and a Cape mountain zebra Equus zebra zebra population is preserved on the mountain. The high number of springs on the mountain not only provides water for the animal species but also contributes to overall ecosystem functioning. Long-term conservation of viable ecosystems requires a broader understanding of the ecological processes involved. It was therefore decided that a classification, description and mapping of the spring vegetation of the Kammanassie Mountain be undertaken. A TWINSPAN classification, refined by Braun-Blanquet procedures, revealed 11 major plant communities that could be related to geological origin. Habitat factors associated with differences in vegetation include topography, soil type and grazing. Descriptions of the plant communities include diagnostic species as well as prominent and less conspicuous species of the tree, shrub and herbaceous layers. The results also indicate a high species richness compared to similar regions and the difference between plant communities of wet and dry springs. This data is important for long-term monitoring of the spring ecosystems as well as for the compilation of management plans.

  19. On the influence of topographic, geological and cryospheric factors on rock avalanches and rockfalls in high-mountain areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Fischer

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The ongoing debate about the effects of changes in the high-mountain cryosphere on rockfalls and rock avalanches suggests a need for more knowledge about characteristics and distribution of recent rock-slope instabilities. This paper investigates 56 sites with slope failures between 1900 and 2007 in the central European Alps with respect to their geological and topographical settings and zones of possible permafrost degradation and glacial recession. Analyses of the temporal distribution show an increase in frequency within the last decades. A large proportion of the slope failures (60% originated from a relatively small area above 3000 m a.s.l. (i.e. 10% of the entire investigation area. This increased proportion of detachment zones above 3000 m a.s.l. is postulated to be a result of a combination of factors, namely a larger proportion of high slope angles, high periglacial weathering due to recent glacier retreat (almost half of the slope failures having occurred in areas with recent deglaciation, and widespread permafrost occurrence. The lithological setting appears to influence volume rather than frequency of a slope failure. However, our analyses show that not only the changes in cryosphere, but also other factors which remain constant over long periods play an important role in slope failures.

  20. 21st century climate change threatens mountain flora unequally across Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engler, R.; Randin, C. F.; Thuiller, W.

    2011-01-01

    Continental-scale assessments of 21st century global impacts of climate change on biodiversity have forecasted range contractions for many species. These coarse resolution studies are, however, of limited relevance for projecting risks to biodiversity in mountain systems, where pronounced...... microclimatic variation could allow species to persist locally, and are ill-suited for assessment of species-specific threat in particular regions. Here, we assess the impacts of climate change on 2632 plant species across all major European mountain ranges, using high-resolution (ca. 100 m) species samples...... and data expressing four future climate scenarios. Projected habitat loss is greater for species distributed at higher elevations; depending on the climate scenario, we find 36–55% of alpine species, 31–51% of subalpine species and 19–46% of montane species lose more than 80% of their suitable habitat...

  1. Novel drugs in the management of acute mountain sickness and high altitude pulmonary edema

    OpenAIRE

    Gaurav Sikri, Gaurav; Bhattacharya,Anirban

    2015-01-01

    Gaurav Sikri, Anirban Bhattacharya Department of Physiology, Armed Forces Medical College, Wanowarie, Pune, IndiaWe read with great interest the review article titled “Wilderness medicine at high altitude: recent developments in the field” by Shah et al.1 The authors have comprehensively summarized the recent advances in the field of high altitude medicine relevant to sports and travel medicine. However, Shah et al have described potential drugs for management of high-alti...

  2. Testing the efficiency of nested barriers to dispersal in the Mediterranean high mountain plant Edraianthus graminifolius (Campanulaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Surina, Boštjan; Schneeweiss, Gerald M; Glasnović, Peter; Schönswetter, Peter

    2014-06-01

    Due to strong spatial heterogeneity and limited Pleistocene glaciation, the Balkan Peninsula is a major European biodiversity hot spot. Surprisingly little, however, is known about patterns and processes of intraspecific diversification of its biota in general and of high-altitude species in particular. A well-suited system to test hypotheses with respect to various isolating factors acting at different geographic scales and to explore full-range phylogeographic patterns on the Balkan Peninsula is Edraianthus graminifolius (Campanulaceae), distributed in the western Balkan mountain systems, the southwestern Carpathians and the Apennine Peninsula. To this end, we used a dense population sampling and employed amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers and plastid DNA sequences supplemented by ecological niche modelling. The strongest splits were inferred to separate southern and northern Balkan populations from the central ones, from where range extension occurred to the Carpathians and, in more recent times, once or twice to the Apennine Peninsula. The three genetic groups in the western Balkan Peninsula were remarkably congruent among molecular markers, suggesting that the barriers to gene flow acted over long time periods facilitating allopatric differentiation. Each main group of Balkan populations contained genetically and geographically distinct subgroups, which likely are the result of local refugia during warmer periods. Evidently, the topographically highly complex and during the Last Glacial Maximum only locally glaciated Balkan Peninsula is a hot spot of species richness and endemism as well as a sanctuary of intraspecific genetic diversity, even if the underlying causes remain insufficiently understood. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. High-resolution DEMs for High-mountain Asia: A systematic, region-wide assessment of geodetic glacier mass balance and dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shean, D. E.; Arendt, A. A.; Osmanoglu, B.; Montesano, P.

    2017-12-01

    High Mountain Asia (HMA) constitutes the largest glacierized region outside of the Earth's polar regions. Although available observations are limited, long-term records indicate sustained regional glacier mass loss since 1850, with increased loss in recent decades. Recent satellite data (e.g., GRACE, ICESat-1) show spatially variable glacier mass balance, with significant mass loss in the Himalaya and Hindu Kush and slight mass gain in the Karakoram. We generated 4000 high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) from sub-meter commercial stereo imagery (DigitalGlobe WorldView/GeoEye) acquired over glaciers in High-mountain Asia from 2002-present (mostly 2013-present). We produced a regional 8-m DEM mosaic for 2015 and estimated 15-year geodetic mass balance for 40000 glaciers larger than 0.1 km2. We are combining with other regional DEM sources to systematically document the spatiotemporal evolution of glacier mass balance for the entire HMA region. We also generated monthly to interannual DEM and velocity time series for high-priority sites distributed across the region, with >15-20 DEMs available for some locations from 2010-present. These records document glacier dynamics, seasonal snow accumulation/redistribution, and processes that affect glacier mass balance (e.g., ice-cliff retreat, debris cover evolution). These efforts will provide basin-scale assessments of snow/ice melt runoff contributions for model cal/val and downstream water resources applications. We will continue processing all archived and newly available commercial stereo imagery for HMA, and will release all DEMs through the HiMAT DAAC.

  4. Is Yucca Mountain a long-term solution for disposing of US spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorne, M C

    2012-06-01

    On 26 January 2012, the Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future released a report addressing, amongst other matters, options for the managing and disposal of high-level waste and spent fuel. The Blue Ribbon Commission was not chartered as a siting commission. Accordingly, it did not evaluate Yucca Mountain or any other location as a potential site for the storage or disposal of spent nuclear fuel and high-level waste. Nevertheless, if the Commission's recommendations are followed, it is clear that any future proposals to develop a repository at Yucca Mountain would require an extended period of consultation with local communities, tribes and the State of Nevada. Furthermore, there would be a need to develop generally applicable regulations for disposal of spent fuel and high-level radioactive waste, so that the Yucca Mountain site could be properly compared with alternative sites that would be expected to be identified in the initial phase of the site-selection process. Based on what is now known of the conditions existing at Yucca Mountain and the large number of safety, environmental and legal issues that have been raised in relation to the DOE Licence Application, it is suggested that it would be imprudent to include Yucca Mountain in a list of candidate sites for future evaluation in a consent-based process for site selection. Even if there were a desire at the local, tribal and state levels to act as hosts for such a repository, there would be enormous difficulties in attempting to develop an adequate post-closure safety case for such a facility, and in showing why this unsaturated environment should be preferred over other geological contexts that exist in the USA and that are more akin to those being studied and developed in other countries.

  5. GEOLOGICAL ANDGEOMORPHOLOGICAL MAPPING ARCHAEOLOGICAL MONUMENTS OF MOUNTAIN ALTAI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Y. Baryshnikov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The article discusses the results of geological and geomorphological mapping of archaeological monument, mainly Paleolithic age, the location of which is confined to low-mountain spaces of the Mountain Altai. Using this mapping would greatly clarify the sequence of relief habitat of ancient people and more objectively determine the age characteristics of archaeological monument. 

  6. Periodic Burning In Table Mountain-Pitch Pine Stands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell B. Randles; David H. van Lear; Thomas A. Waldrop; Dean M. Simon

    2002-01-01

    Abstract - The effects of multiple, low intensity burns on vegetation and wildlife habitat in Table Mountain (Pinus pungens Lamb.)-pitch (Pinus rigida Mill.) pine communities were studied in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Treatments consisted of areas burned from one to four times at 3-4 year...

  7. Distribution and dynamic habitat use of young bull sharks Carcharhinus leucas in a highly stratified northern Gulf of Mexico estuary.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Marcus Drymon

    Full Text Available Understanding how animals alter habitat use in response to changing abiotic conditions is important for effective conservation management. For bull sharks (Carcharhinus leucas, habitat use has been widely examined in the eastern and western Gulf of Mexico; however, knowledge of their movements and the factors influencing them is lacking for populations in the more temperate north-central Gulf of Mexico. To examine how changes in hydrographic conditions affected the presence of young bull sharks in Mobile Bay, Alabama, thirty-five sharks were fitted with internal acoustic transmitters and monitored with an acoustic monitoring array consisting of thirty-three receivers between June 2009 and December 2010. Tagged sharks ranged in size from 60 to 114 cm fork length and were detected between the upper and lower portions of Mobile Bay. Despite a variety of freshwater sources associated with this highly productive estuary, sharks were most consistently detected at the largest input to the system--the Mobile and Tensaw Rivers. Our findings suggest a combination of hydrographic factors interact to influence the distribution of juvenile bull sharks in Mobile Bay. The factors affecting the probability of detecting at least one bull shark varied both temporally (2009 vs 2010 and spatially (upper vs lower bay. Electivity analysis demonstrated that bull sharks showed highest affinity for warm water (29-32 °C, moderate salinities (10-11 psu and normoxic waters (5-7 mg/l, although these patterns were not consistent between regions or across years. We suggest future studies coupling telemetry and hydrographic variables should, when possible, consider the interactions of multiple environmental parameters when defining the dynamic factors explaining the spatial distribution of coastal sharks.

  8. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison M Benscoter

    Full Text Available The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  9. Distribution and dynamic habitat use of young bull sharks Carcharhinus leucas in a highly stratified northern Gulf of Mexico estuary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drymon, J Marcus; Ajemian, Matthew J; Powers, Sean P

    2014-01-01

    Understanding how animals alter habitat use in response to changing abiotic conditions is important for effective conservation management. For bull sharks (Carcharhinus leucas), habitat use has been widely examined in the eastern and western Gulf of Mexico; however, knowledge of their movements and the factors influencing them is lacking for populations in the more temperate north-central Gulf of Mexico. To examine how changes in hydrographic conditions affected the presence of young bull sharks in Mobile Bay, Alabama, thirty-five sharks were fitted with internal acoustic transmitters and monitored with an acoustic monitoring array consisting of thirty-three receivers between June 2009 and December 2010. Tagged sharks ranged in size from 60 to 114 cm fork length and were detected between the upper and lower portions of Mobile Bay. Despite a variety of freshwater sources associated with this highly productive estuary, sharks were most consistently detected at the largest input to the system--the Mobile and Tensaw Rivers. Our findings suggest a combination of hydrographic factors interact to influence the distribution of juvenile bull sharks in Mobile Bay. The factors affecting the probability of detecting at least one bull shark varied both temporally (2009 vs 2010) and spatially (upper vs lower bay). Electivity analysis demonstrated that bull sharks showed highest affinity for warm water (29-32 °C), moderate salinities (10-11 psu) and normoxic waters (5-7 mg/l), although these patterns were not consistent between regions or across years. We suggest future studies coupling telemetry and hydrographic variables should, when possible, consider the interactions of multiple environmental parameters when defining the dynamic factors explaining the spatial distribution of coastal sharks.

  10. Headwater Stream Management Dichotomies: Local Amphibian Habitat vs. Downstream Fish Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, C. R.

    2002-12-01

    Small headwater streams in mountainous areas of the Pacific Northwest often do not harbor fish populations because of low water depth and high gradients. Rather, these streams provide habitat for dense assemblages of stream-dwelling amphibians. A variety of management goals have been suggested for such streams such as encouraging large woody debris recruitment to assist in sediment trapping and valley floor formation, encouraging large woody debris recruitment to provide downstream wood when debris flows occur, providing continuous linear stream buffers within forest harvest areas to provide shade and bank stability, etc. A basic problem with analying the geomorphic or biotic benefits of any of these strategies is the lack of explicit management goals for such streams. Should managers strive to optimize downstream fish habitat, local amphibian habitat, or both? Through observational data and theoretical considerations, it will be shown that these biotic goals will lead to very different geomorphic management recommendations. For instance, woody debris greater than 60 cm diameter may assist in valley floor development, but it is likely to create subsurface channel flow of unknown value to amphibians. Trapping and retention of fine sediments within headwater streams may improve downstream spawning gravels, but degrades stream-dwelling amphibian habitat. In response to the need for descriptive information on habitat and channel morphology specific to small, non-fish-bearing streams in the Pacific Northwest, morphologies and wood frequencies in forty-two first- and second-order forested streams less than four meters wide were surveyed. Frequencies and size distributions of woody debris were compared between small streams and larger fish-bearing streams as well as between second-growth and virgin timber streams. Statistical models were developed to explore dominant factors affecting channel morphology and habitat. Findings suggest geomorphological relationships

  11. Performance and Costs of Ductless Heat Pumps in Marine-Climate High-Performance Homes -- Habitat for Humanity The Woods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lubliner, Michael [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program; Howard, Luke [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program; Hales, David [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program; Kunkle, Rick [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program; Gordon, Andy [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program; Spencer, Melinda [Building America Partnership for Improved Residential Construction, Olympia, WA (United States). Washington States Univ. Energy Program

    2016-02-18

    The Woods is a Habitat for Humanity (HFH) community of ENERGY STAR Homes Northwest (ESHNW)-certified homes located in the marine climate of Tacoma/Pierce County, Washington. This research report builds on an earlier preliminary draft 2014 BA report, and includes significant billing analysis and cost effectiveness research from a collaborative, ongoing Ductless Heat Pump (DHP)research effort for Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU) and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). This report focuses on the results of field testing, modeling, and monitoring of ductless mini-split heat pump hybrid heating systems in seven homes built and first occupied at various times between September 2013 and October 2014. The report also provides WSU documentation of high-performance home observations, lessons learned, and stakeholder recommendations for builders of affordable high-performance housing such as HFH. Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU) and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). This report focuses on the results of field testing, modeling, and monitoring of ductless mini-split heat pump hybrid heating systems in seven homes built and first occupied at various times between September 2013 and October 2014. The report also provides WSU documentation of high-performance home observations, lessons learned, and stakeholder recommendations for builders of affordable high-performance housing such as HFH.

  12. Combining pixel and object based image analysis of ultra-high resolution multibeam bathymetry and backscatter for habitat mapping in shallow marine waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ierodiaconou, Daniel; Schimel, Alexandre C. G.; Kennedy, David; Monk, Jacquomo; Gaylard, Grace; Young, Mary; Diesing, Markus; Rattray, Alex

    2018-06-01

    Habitat mapping data are increasingly being recognised for their importance in underpinning marine spatial planning. The ability to collect ultra-high resolution (cm) multibeam echosounder (MBES) data in shallow waters has facilitated understanding of the fine-scale distribution of benthic habitats in these areas that are often prone to human disturbance. Developing quantitative and objective approaches to integrate MBES data with ground observations for predictive modelling is essential for ensuring repeatability and providing confidence measures for habitat mapping products. Whilst supervised classification approaches are becoming more common, users are often faced with a decision whether to implement a pixel based (PB) or an object based (OB) image analysis approach, with often limited understanding of the potential influence of that decision on final map products and relative importance of data inputs to patterns observed. In this study, we apply an ensemble learning approach capable of integrating PB and OB Image Analysis from ultra-high resolution MBES bathymetry and backscatter data for mapping benthic habitats in Refuge Cove, a temperate coastal embayment in south-east Australia. We demonstrate the relative importance of PB and OB seafloor derivatives for the five broad benthic habitats that dominate the site. We found that OB and PB approaches performed well with differences in classification accuracy but not discernible statistically. However, a model incorporating elements of both approaches proved to be significantly more accurate than OB or PB methods alone and demonstrate the benefits of using MBES bathymetry and backscatter combined for class discrimination.

  13. Strong Genetic Differentiation of Submerged Plant Populations across Mountain Ranges: Evidence from Potamogeton pectinatus in Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbasi, Shabnam; Afsharzadeh, Saeed; Saeidi, Hojjatollah; Triest, Ludwig

    2016-01-01

    Biogeographic barriers for freshwater biota can be effective at various spatial scales. At the largest spatial scale, freshwater organisms can become genetically isolated by their high mountain ranges, vast deserts, and inability to cross oceans. Isolation by distance of aquatic plants is expected to be stronger across than alongside mountain ridges whereas the heterogeneity of habitats among populations and temporary droughts may influence connectivity and hamper dispersal. Suitable aquatic plant habitats became reduced, even for the widespread submerged Potamogeton pectinatus L. (also named Stuckenia pectinata) giving structure to various aquatic habitats. We compared the level of genetic diversity in a heterogeneous series of aquatic habitats across Iran and tested their differentiation over distances and across mountain ranges (Alborz and Zagros) and desert zones (Kavir), with values obtained from temperate region populations. The diversity of aquatic ecosystems across and along large geographic barriers provided a unique ecological situation within Iran. P. pectinatus were considered from thirty-six sites across Iran at direct flight distances ranging from 20 to 1,200 km. Nine microsatellite loci revealed a very high number of alleles over all sites. A PCoA, NJT clustering and STRUCTURE analysis revealed a separate grouping of individuals of southeastern Iranian sites and was confirmed by their different nuclear ITS and cpDNA haplotypes thereby indicating an evolutionary significant unit (ESU). At the level of populations, a positive correlation between allelic differentiation Dest with geographic distance was found. Individual-based STRUCTURE analysis over 36 sites showed 7 genetic clusters. FST and RST values for ten populations reached 0.343 and 0.521, respectively thereby indicating that allele length differences are more important and contain evolutionary information. Overall, higher levels of diversity and a stronger differentiation was revealed among

  14. Deriving animal behaviour from high-frequency GPS: tracking cows in open and forested habitat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Weerd, N.; van Langevelde, F.; van Oeveren, H.; Nolet, Bart A.; Kölzsch, Andrea; Prins, H.H.T.; De Boer, W.F.

    2015-01-01

    The increasing spatiotemporal accuracy of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) tracking systems opens the possibility to infer animal behaviour from tracking data. We studied the relationship between high-frequency GNSS data and behaviour, aimed at developing an easily interpretable

  15. Unsaturated flow modeling in performance assessments for the Yucca Mountain disposal system for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rechard, Rob P.; Birkholzer, Jens T.; Wu, Yu-Shu; Stein, Joshua S.; Houseworth, James E.

    2014-01-01

    This paper summarizes the progression of modeling efforts of infiltration, percolation, and seepage conducted between 1984 and 2008 to evaluate feasibility, viability, and assess compliance of a repository in the unsaturated zone for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Scientific understanding of infiltration in a desert environment, unsaturated percolation flux in fractures and matrix of the volcanic tuff, and seepage into an open drift in a thermally perturbed environment was initially lacking in 1984. As understanding of the Yucca Mountain disposal system increased through site characterization and in situ testing, modeling of infiltration, percolation, and seepage evolved from simple assumptions in a single model in 1984 to three modeling modules each based on several detailed process models in 2008. Uncertainty in percolation flux through Yucca Mountain was usually important in explaining the observed uncertainty in performance measures:cumulative release in assessments prior to 1995 and individual dose, thereafter. - Highlights: • Progression of modeling of infiltration, percolation, and seepage conducted is described for a geological repository at Yucca Mountain. • Progression from 1-D in single equivalent to 3-D model of percolation in dual permeability continuum is described. • Introduction of an infiltration boundary condition in 1998 and the refinement for evaluating uncertainty for the license application is described. • Introduction of a seepage module that included calibration to in-site measurements and separating uncertainty and variability is described

  16. Mineralogy and clinoptilolite K/Ar results from Yucca Mountain, Nevada, USA: A potential high-level radioactive waste repository site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    WoldeGabriel, G.; Broxton, D.E.; Bish, D.L.; Chipera, S.J.

    1993-11-01

    The Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project is investigating Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as a potential site for a high-level nuclear waste repository. An important aspect of this evaluation is to understand the geologic history of the site including the diagenetic processes that are largely responsible for the present-day chemical and physical properties of the altered tuffs. This study evaluates the use of K/Ar geochronology in determining the alteration history of the zeolitized portions of Miocene tuffs at Yucca Mountain. Clinoptilolite is not generally regarded as suitable for dating because of its open structure and large ion-exchange capacity. However, it is the most abundant zeolite at Yucca Mountain and was selected for this study to assess the feasibility of dating the zeolitization process and/or subsequent processes that may have affected the zeolites. In this study we examine the ability of this mineral to retain all or part of its K and radiogenic Ar during diagenesis and evaluate the usefulness of the clinoptilolite K/Ar dates for determining the history of alteration

  17. Thin Air Resulting in High Pressure: Mountain Sickness and Hypoxia-Induced Pulmonary Hypertension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Manuel; Tello, Khodr; Sommer, Natascha; Gall, Henning; Ghofrani, Hossein Ardeschir

    2017-01-01

    With rising altitude the partial pressure of oxygen falls. This phenomenon leads to hypobaric hypoxia at high altitude. Since more than 140 million people permanently live at heights above 2500 m and more than 35 million travel to these heights each year, understanding the mechanisms resulting in acute or chronic maladaptation of the human body to these circumstances is crucial. This review summarizes current knowledge of the body's acute response to these circumstances, possible complications and their treatment, and health care issues resulting from long-term exposure to high altitude. It furthermore describes the characteristic mechanisms of adaptation to life in hypobaric hypoxia expressed by the three major ethnic groups permanently dwelling at high altitude. We additionally summarize current knowledge regarding possible treatment options for hypoxia-induced pulmonary hypertension by reviewing in vitro, rodent, and human studies in this area of research. PMID:28522921

  18. Using high-resolution future climate scenarios to forecast Bromus tectorum invasion in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, Amanda M; Kumar, Sunil; Wakie, Tewodros; Brown, Cynthia S; Stohlgren, Thomas J; Laituri, Melinda; Bromberg, Jim

    2015-01-01

    National Parks are hallmarks of ecosystem preservation in the United States. The introduction of alien invasive plant species threatens protection of these areas. Bromus tectorum L. (commonly called downy brome or cheatgrass), which is found in Rocky Mountain National Park (hereafter, the Park), Colorado, USA, has been implicated in early spring competition with native grasses, decreased soil nitrogen, altered nutrient and hydrologic regimes, and increased fire intensity. We estimated the potential distribution of B. tectorum in the Park based on occurrence records (n = 211), current and future climate, and distance to roads and trails. An ensemble of six future climate scenarios indicated the habitable area of B. tectorum may increase from approximately 5.5% currently to 20.4% of the Park by the year 2050. Using ordination methods we evaluated the climatic space occupied by B. tectorum in the Park and how this space may shift given future climate change. Modeling climate change at a small extent (1,076 km2) and at a fine spatial resolution (90 m) is a novel approach in species distribution modeling, and may provide inference for microclimates not captured in coarse-scale models. Maps from our models serve as high-resolution hypotheses that can be improved over time by land managers to set priorities for surveys and removal of invasive species such as B. tectorum.

  19. Superiour Revaluation of the Pastures in the Cindrel Mountains by Environment Friendly Technologies in Order to Obtain High Quality Products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Rusu

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The experiments placed in the year 2011 for a superiour valuing of pastures, by their results, lead to the elaboration of some ecological systems of mountain agriculture. The production levels record growths of 13% on the organically fertilised variants and a growth in the weight which can reach 153g/head/day at the young sheep. The selectivity of pasture is reflected in the preference of animals for a more intense grazing on the organically fertilized pastures as compared to the unfertilized ones. The experimental variants (gradual organic fertilization, fertilization + oversowing support a long-lasting pratological system which can lead to an evolution of the floristic composition favourable to the fixation of perennial fodder leguminous plants, obtaining significant growth in weight and improving the quality of the carcasses. The suggested system does not pollute the environment and it is conceived to be achieved besides the protection of prato-ecosystems and acceptable economical results by integrating natural resources and the natural mechanisms of adjustment in agricultural practice so as to replace at maximum the inputs from outside the system, ensures a long-lasting protection of food and high quality products by ecologically preferable technologies, ensures the income of the farmers and supports the multiple functions of agriculture

  20. Using High-Resolution Future Climate Scenarios to Forecast Bromus tectorum Invasion in Rocky Mountain National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, Amanda M.; Kumar, Sunil; Wakie, Tewodros; Brown, Cynthia S.; Stohlgren, Thomas J.; Laituri, Melinda; Bromberg, Jim

    2015-01-01

    National Parks are hallmarks of ecosystem preservation in the United States. The introduction of alien invasive plant species threatens protection of these areas. Bromus tectorum L. (commonly called downy brome or cheatgrass), which is found in Rocky Mountain National Park (hereafter, the Park), Colorado, USA, has been implicated in early spring competition with native grasses, decreased soil nitrogen, altered nutrient and hydrologic regimes, and increased fire intensity. We estimated the potential distribution of B. tectorum in the Park based on occurrence records (n = 211), current and future climate, and distance to roads and trails. An ensemble of six future climate scenarios indicated the habitable area of B. tectorum may increase from approximately 5.5% currently to 20.4% of the Park by the year 2050. Using ordination methods we evaluated the climatic space occupied by B. tectorum in the Park and how this space may shift given future climate change. Modeling climate change at a small extent (1,076 km2) and at a fine spatial resolution (90 m) is a novel approach in species distribution modeling, and may provide inference for microclimates not captured in coarse-scale models. Maps from our models serve as high-resolution hypotheses that can be improved over time by land managers to set priorities for surveys and removal of invasive species such as B. tectorum. PMID:25695255

  1. Evaluation of the post-emplacement environment of high level radioactive waste packages at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Glassley, W.

    1989-01-01

    Evaluation of the post-emplacement environment around high-level radioactive waste containers is required by federal regulations. The information derived from this evaluation will be used to determine the service performance of the waste containers, the chemical and hydrological conditions that may influence radionuclide release and transport if containers are breached, and retrievability of the waste containers prior to closure of the repository. Laboratory studies, numerical simulations, and field experiments and tests are used to provide data necessary for this evaluation. Results obtained to date demonstrate that the post-emplacement environment in the welded tuff at Yucca Mountain, Nevada maintains relatively benign chemical features (i.e., near neutral pH, low concentrations of dissolved species) for most scenarios. The hydrological environment appears to be one of low flow volume and rates for the expected condition of an unsaturated medium. Emplacement borehole stability will be a function of fracture density and orientation, which may be influenced by microcrack development. Field studies and numerical simulations are in progress that will extend the results of laboratory studies to long time periods. The extent to which chemical, hydrological and mechanical processes can be adequately coupled through numerical simulations remains a matter of concern

  2. High Elevation Refugia for Bombus terricola (Hymenoptera: Apidae) Conservation and Wild Bees of the White Mountain National Forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Erika M; Rehan, Sandra M

    2017-01-01

    Many wild bee species are in global decline, yet much is still unknown about their diversity and contemporary distributions. National parks and forests offer unique areas of refuge important for the conservation of rare and declining species populations. Here we present the results of the first biodiversity survey of the bee fauna in the White Mountain National Forest (WMNF). More than a thousand specimens were collected from pan and sweep samples representing 137 species. Three species were recorded for the first time in New England and an additional seven species were documented for the first time in the state of New Hampshire. Four introduced species were also observed in the specimens collected. A checklist of the species found in the WMNF, as well as those found previously in Strafford County, NH, is included with new state records and introduced species noted as well as a map of collecting locations. Of particular interest was the relatively high abundance of Bombus terricola Kirby 1837 found in many of the higher elevation collection sites and the single specimen documented of Bombus fervidus (Fabricius 1798). Both of these bumble bee species are known to have declining populations in the northeast and are categorized as vulnerable on the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Red List. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America.

  3. Risk Factors for Fatal Outcome From Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in a Highly Endemic Area—Arizona, 2002–2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, Joanna J.; Traeger, Marc S.; Humpherys, Dwight; Mahoney, Dianna L.; Martinez, Michelle; Emerson, Ginny L.; Tack, Danielle M.; Geissler, Aimee; Yasmin, Seema; Lawson, Regina; Williams, Velda; Hamilton, Charlene; Levy, Craig; Komatsu, Ken; Yost, David A.; McQuiston, Jennifer H.

    2016-01-01

    Background Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) is a disease that now causes significant morbidity and mortality on several American Indian reservations in Arizona. Although the disease is treatable, reported RMSF case fatality rates from this region are high (7%) compared to the rest of the nation (<1%), suggesting a need to identify clinical points for intervention. Methods The first 205 cases from this region were reviewed and fatal RMSF cases were compared to nonfatal cases to determine clinical risk factors for fatal outcome. Results Doxycycline was initiated significantly later in fatal cases (median, day 7) than nonfatal cases (median, day 3), although both groups of case patients presented for care early (median, day 2). Multiple factors increased the risk of doxycycline delay and fatal outcome, such as early symptoms of nausea and diarrhea, history of alcoholism or chronic lung disease, and abnormal laboratory results such as elevated liver aminotransferases. Rash, history of tick bite, thrombocytopenia, and hyponatremia were often absent at initial presentation. Conclusions Earlier treatment with doxycycline can decrease morbidity and mortality from RMSF in this region. Recognition of risk factors associated with doxycycline delay and fatal outcome, such as early gastrointestinal symptoms and a history of alcoholism or chronic lung disease, may be useful in guiding early treatment decisions. Healthcare providers should have a low threshold for initiating doxycycline whenever treating febrile or potentially septic patients from tribal lands in Arizona, even if an alternative diagnosis seems more likely and classic findings of RMSF are absent. PMID:25697742

  4. Long-Term Waste Package Degradation Studies at the Yucca Mountain Potential High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mon, K. G.; Bullard, B. E.; Longsine, D. E.; Mehta, S.; Lee, J. H.; Monib, A. M.

    2002-01-01

    The Site Recommendation (SR) process for the potential repository for spent nuclear fuel (SNF) and high-level nuclear waste (HLW) at Yucca Mountain, Nevada is underway. Fulfillment of the requirements for substantially complete containment of the radioactive waste emplaced in the potential repository and subsequent slow release of radionuclides from the Engineered Barrier System (EBS) into the geosphere will rely on a robust waste container design, among other EBS components. Part of the SR process involves sensitivity studies aimed at elucidating which model parameters contribute most to the drip shield and waste package degradation characteristics. The model parameters identified included (a) general corrosion rate model parameters (temperature-dependence and uncertainty treatment), and (b) stress corrosion cracking (SCC) model parameters (uncertainty treatment of stress and stress intensity factor profiles in the Alloy 22 waste package outer barrier closure weld regions, the SCC initiation stress threshold, and the fraction of manufacturing flaws oriented favorably for through-wall penetration by SCC). These model parameters were reevaluated and new distributions were generated. Also, early waste package failures due to improper heat treatment were added to the waste package degradation model. The results of these investigations indicate that the waste package failure profiles are governed by the manufacturing flaw orientation model parameters and models used

  5. Using high-resolution future climate scenarios to forecast Bromus tectorum invasion in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda M West

    Full Text Available National Parks are hallmarks of ecosystem preservation in the United States. The introduction of alien invasive plant species threatens protection of these areas. Bromus tectorum L. (commonly called downy brome or cheatgrass, which is found in Rocky Mountain National Park (hereafter, the Park, Colorado, USA, has been implicated in early spring competition with native grasses, decreased soil nitrogen, altered nutrient and hydrologic regimes, and increased fire intensity. We estimated the potential distribution of B. tectorum in the Park based on occurrence records (n = 211, current and future climate, and distance to roads and trails. An ensemble of six future climate scenarios indicated the habitable area of B. tectorum may increase from approximately 5.5% currently to 20.4% of the Park by the year 2050. Using ordination methods we evaluated the climatic space occupied by B. tectorum in the Park and how this space may shift given future climate change. Modeling climate change at a small extent (1,076 km2 and at a fine spatial resolution (90 m is a novel approach in species distribution modeling, and may provide inference for microclimates not captured in coarse-scale models. Maps from our models serve as high-resolution hypotheses that can be improved over time by land managers to set priorities for surveys and removal of invasive species such as B. tectorum.

  6. Mountain Biking Injuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansari, Majid; Nourian, Ruhollah; Khodaee, Morteza

    With the increasing popularity of mountain biking, also known as off-road cycling, and the riders pushing the sport into extremes, there has been a corresponding increase in injury. Almost two thirds of acute injuries involve the upper extremities, and a similar proportion of overuse injuries affect the lower extremities. Mountain biking appears to be a high-risk sport for severe spine injuries. New trends of injury patterns are observed with popularity of mountain bike trail parks and freeride cycling. Using protective gear, improving technical proficiency, and physical fitness may somewhat decrease the risk of injuries. Simple modifications in bicycle-rider interface areas and with the bicycle (bike fit) also may decrease some overuse injuries. Bike fit provides the clinician with postural correction during the sport. In this review, we also discuss the importance of race-day management strategies and monitoring the injury trends.

  7. Rock glaciers in the Western and High Tatra Mountains, Western Carpathians

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Uxa, Tomáš; Mida, P.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 13, č. 2 (2017), s. 844-857 ISSN 1744-5647 Institutional support: RVO:67985530 Keywords : rock glaciers * inventory * Western and High Tatra Mts * Carpathians * Slovakia * Poland Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography OBOR OECD: Physical geography Impact factor: 2.174, year: 2016

  8. Pollen and macroscopic analyses of sediments from two lakes in the High Tatra mountains, Slovakia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rybníčková, Eliška; Rybníček, Kamil

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 15, - (2006), s. 345-356 ISSN 0939-6314 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/96/0531; GA ČR GA206/02/0568 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Pollen analyses * macroscopic analyses * high mointain lakes Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.649, year: 2006

  9. 75 FR 38768 - Ashley National Forest, UT, High Uintas Wilderness-Colorado River Cutthroat Trout Habitat...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-06

    ... remove competing and hybridizing nonnative fish species from selected streams and lakes within the High... selected lakes and associated stream segments in the Garfield Basin and Swasey Hole in the Yellowstone... comments to Ron Brunson, Roosevelt/Duchesne Ranger District, P.O. Box 981, Duchesne, Utah 84021. Comments...

  10. Deriving animal behaviour from high-frequency GPS: tracking cows in open and forested habitat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weerd, de N.; Langevelde, van F.; Oeveren, van H.; Nolet, B.A.; Kölzsch, A.; Prins, H.H.T.; Boer, de W.F.

    2015-01-01

    The increasing spatiotemporal accuracy of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) tracking systems opens the possibility to infer animal behaviour from tracking data.We studied the relationship between high-frequency GNSS data and behaviour, aimed at developing an easily interpretable

  11. Effects of ultraviolet radiation and nutrients on the structure-function of phytoplankton in a high mountain lake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korbee, Nathalie; Carrillo, Presentación; Mata, M Teresa; Rosillo, Silvia; Medina-Sánchez, Juan Manuel; Figueroa, Félix L

    2012-06-01

    The combined effect of high solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) and nutrient supply in a phytoplankton community of a high mountain lake is analyzed in a in situ experiment for 6 days with 2 × 2 factorial design. Interactive UVR × nutrient effects on structural and functional variables (algal biomass, chlorophyll a (chl a), primary production (PP), maximal electron transport rate (ETR(max)), and alkaline phosphatase activity (APA)), as well as stoichiometric ones (sestonic N per cell and N:P ratio) were found. Under non-nutrient enriched conditions, no deleterious effects of UVR on structural variables, PP, photosynthetic efficiency and ETR(max) were observed, whereas only particulate and total APA were affected by UVR. However, percentage excreted organic carbon (%EOC), dissolved APA and sestonic C and P per cell increased under UVR, leading to a decrease in algal C:P and N:P ratios. After nutrient enrichment, chl a, total algal biomass and PP were negatively affected by UVR whereas %EOC, ETR(max) and internal C, P and N content increased. We suggest that the mechanism of algal acclimation to UVR in this high UVR flux ecosystem seems to be related to the increase of internal algal P-content mediated by physiological mechanisms to save P and by a stimulatory UVR effect on dissolved extracellular APA. The mechanism involved in the unmasking effect of UVR after nutrient-enrichment may be the result of a greater sensitivity to UVR-induced cell damage, making the negative UVR effects more evident.

  12. Geologyy of the Yucca Mountain Site Area, Southwestern Nevada, Chapter in Stuckless, J.S., ED., Yucca Mountain, Nevada - A Proposed Geologic Repository for High-Level Radioactive Waste (Volume 1)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    W.R. Keefer; J.W. Whitney; D.C. Buesch

    2006-09-25

    Yucca Mountain in southwestern Nevada is a prominent, irregularly shaped upland formed by a thick apron of Miocene pyroclastic-flow and fallout tephra deposits, with minor lava flows, that was segmented by through-going, large-displacement normal faults into a series of north-trending, eastwardly tilted structural blocks. The principal volcanic-rock units are the Tiva Canyon and Topopah Spring Tuffs of the Paintbrush Group, which consist of volumetrically large eruptive sequences derived from compositionally distinct magma bodies in the nearby southwestern Nevada volcanic field, and are classic examples of a magmatic zonation characterized by an upper crystal-rich (> 10% crystal fragments) member, a more voluminous lower crystal-poor (< 5% crystal fragments) member, and an intervening thin transition zone. Rocks within the crystal-poor member of the Topopah Spring Tuff, lying some 280 m below the crest of Yucca Mountain, constitute the proposed host rock to be excavated for the storage of high-level radioactive wastes. Separation of the tuffaceous rock formations into subunits that allow for detailed mapping and structural interpretations is based on macroscopic features, most importantly the relative abundance of lithophysae and the degree of welding. The latter feature, varying from nonwelded through partly and moderately welded to densely welded, exerts a strong control on matrix porosities and other rock properties that provide essential criteria for distinguishing hydrogeologic and thermal-mechanical units, which are of major interest in evaluating the suitability of Yucca Mountain to host a safe and permanent geologic repository for waste storage. A thick and varied sequence of surficial deposits mantle large parts of the Yucca Mountain site area. Mapping of these deposits and associated soils in exposures and in the walls of trenches excavated across buried faults provides evidence for multiple surface-rupturing events along all of the major faults during

  13. Shocks from high-energy nuclear-interacting particles in the mountain Chakaltajya

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kamata, K [Tokyo Univ. (Japan)

    1975-06-01

    Experimental investigations of extensive air showers at the height of 5200 m above the sea level have been performed. The behaviour of high energy nuclear active particles in the cores of the showers has been studied using the nuclear knock-on method. The cross section of the proton inelastic interaction with the air is shown to increase with energy in the energy range of 3-9 TeV.

  14. Affordable High-Performance Homes: The 2002 NREL Denver Habitat for Humanity House, A Cold-Climate Case Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Norton, P.; Stafford, B.; Carpenter, B.; Hancock, C. E.; Barker, G.; Reeves, P.; Kriescher, P.

    2005-04-01

    A trend towards ''green'' building with a focus on energy efficiency is sweeping the United States homebuilding industry. An integrated systems-design approach leads to homes that are more efficient, more comfortable, more affordable, and more durable than homes built with standard practices. Habitat for Humanity affiliates throughout the country are taking the lead on this approach to home building for affordable housing. This approach supports Habitat's goals of supplying quality housing and reducing the energy cost burden on families in Habitat homes--goals that are especially important in these days of increasing energy costs.

  15. Human impacts to mountain streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wohl, Ellen

    2006-09-01

    Mountain streams are here defined as channel networks within mountainous regions of the world. This definition encompasses tremendous diversity of physical and biological conditions, as well as history of land use. Human effects on mountain streams may result from activities undertaken within the stream channel that directly alter channel geometry, the dynamics of water and sediment movement, contaminants in the stream, or aquatic and riparian communities. Examples include channelization, construction of grade-control structures or check dams, removal of beavers, and placer mining. Human effects can also result from activities within the watershed that indirectly affect streams by altering the movement of water, sediment, and contaminants into the channel. Deforestation, cropping, grazing, land drainage, and urbanization are among the land uses that indirectly alter stream processes. An overview of the relative intensity of human impacts to mountain streams is provided by a table summarizing human effects on each of the major mountainous regions with respect to five categories: flow regulation, biotic integrity, water pollution, channel alteration, and land use. This table indicates that very few mountains have streams not at least moderately affected by land use. The least affected mountainous regions are those at very high or very low latitudes, although our scientific ignorance of conditions in low-latitude mountains in particular means that streams in these mountains might be more altered than is widely recognized. Four case studies from northern Sweden (arctic region), Colorado Front Range (semiarid temperate region), Swiss Alps (humid temperate region), and Papua New Guinea (humid tropics) are also used to explore in detail the history and effects on rivers of human activities in mountainous regions. The overview and case studies indicate that mountain streams must be managed with particular attention to upstream/downstream connections, hillslope

  16. Determination of re-aeration coefficients on high mountain rivers using nuclear techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fajardo, Marco

    2001-01-01

    The rivers Machangara and Guayllabamba in Quito, Ecuador, currently are highly polluted, mainly due to human and industrial residues from the city. The objective of this survey is to establish the dynamics of dissolved oxygen in these rivers using the Krypton 85 method to determine the re aeration coefficient in representative sectors of the rivers. In addition, conventional test tracers establish mean flow speed and flow longitudinal dispersion coefficients. The results of this study will be useful for future water quality modelling of these rivers, in order to define their behaviour and auto depurative capacity to treat sludge waters from Quito

  17. Natural Competence of Xylella fastidiosa Occurs at a High Frequency Inside Microfluidic Chambers Mimicking the Bacterium's Natural Habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kandel, Prem P; Lopez, Samantha M; Almeida, Rodrigo P P; De La Fuente, Leonardo

    2016-09-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is a xylem-limited bacterium that is the causal agent of emerging diseases in a number of economically important crops. Genetic diversity studies have demonstrated homologous recombination occurring among X. fastidiosa strains, which has been proposed to contribute to host plant shifts. Moreover, experimental evidence confirmed that X. fastidiosa is naturally competent for recombination in vitro Here, as an approximation of natural habitats (plant xylem vessels and insect mouthparts), recombination was studied in microfluidic chambers (MCs) filled with media amended with grapevine xylem sap. First, different media were screened for recombination in solid agar plates using a pair of X. fastidiosa strains that were previously reported to recombine in coculture. The highest frequency of recombination was obtained with PD3 medium, compared to those with the other two media (X. fastidiosa medium [XFM] and periwinkle wilt [PW] medium) used in previous studies. Dissection of the media components led to the identification of bovine serum albumin as an inhibitor of recombination that was correlated to its previously known effect on inhibition of twitching motility. When recombination was performed in liquid culture, the frequencies were significantly higher under flow conditions (MCs) than under batch conditions (test tubes). The recombination frequencies in MCs and agar plates were not significantly different from each other. Grapevine xylem sap from both susceptible and tolerant varieties allowed high recombination frequency in MCs when mixed with PD3. These results suggest that X. fastidiosa has the ability to be naturally competent in the natural growth environment of liquid flow, and this phenomenon could have implications in X. fastidiosa environmental adaptation. Xylella fastidiosa is a plant pathogen that lives inside xylem vessels (where water and nutrients are transported inside the plant) and the mouthparts of insect vectors. This bacterium

  18. Concentrate Supplement Modifies the Feeding Behavior of Simmental Cows Grazing in Two High Mountain Pastures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romanzin, Alberto; Corazzin, Mirco; Piasentier, Edi; Bovolenta, Stefano

    2018-05-16

    During grazing on Alpine pastures, the use of concentrates in dairy cows' diet leads to a reduction of the environmental sustainability of farms, and influences the selective pressure on some plant species. In order to minimize the use of concentrates, it is imperative to obtain data on the grazing behavior of cows. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of concentrate levels on the behavior of dairy cows during grazing. One hundred and ten lactating Italian Simmental cows, that sequentially grazed two pastures characterized by Poion alpinae (Poion) and Seslerion caeruleae (Seslerion) alliance, were considered. For each pasture, eight cows were selected and assigned to two groups: High and Low, supplemented with 4 kg/head/d, and 1 kg/head/d of concentrate respectively. Cows were equipped with a noseband pressure sensor and a pedometer (RumiWatch system, ITIN-HOCH GmbH) to assess grazing, ruminating, and walking behavior. In addition, the plant selection of the animals was assessed. On Poion, increased supplement intake caused a more intense selection of legumes, without affecting feeding and walking times. On Seslerion, grazing time was higher in Low than High. Grazing management in alpine region must take into account the great variability of pastures that largely differ from a floristic and nutritional point of view.

  19. Concentrate Supplement Modifies the Feeding Behavior of Simmental Cows Grazing in Two High Mountain Pastures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Romanzin

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available During grazing on Alpine pastures, the use of concentrates in dairy cows’ diet leads to a reduction of the environmental sustainability of farms, and influences the selective pressure on some plant species. In order to minimize the use of concentrates, it is imperative to obtain data on the grazing behavior of cows. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of concentrate levels on the behavior of dairy cows during grazing. One hundred and ten lactating Italian Simmental cows, that sequentially grazed two pastures characterized by Poion alpinae (Poion and Seslerion caeruleae (Seslerion alliance, were considered. For each pasture, eight cows were selected and assigned to two groups: High and Low, supplemented with 4 kg/head/d, and 1 kg/head/d of concentrate respectively. Cows were equipped with a noseband pressure sensor and a pedometer (RumiWatch system, ITIN-HOCH GmbH to assess grazing, ruminating, and walking behavior. In addition, the plant selection of the animals was assessed. On Poion, increased supplement intake caused a more intense selection of legumes, without affecting feeding and walking times. On Seslerion, grazing time was higher in Low than High. Grazing management in alpine region must take into account the great variability of pastures that largely differ from a floristic and nutritional point of view.

  20. Genotype and year variability of the chemical composition of walnut oil of Moroccan seedlings from the high Atlas Mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kodad, O.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Protein and oil content, fatty acid composition and tocopherol concentration were determined for two years in the kernel of ten candidate walnut selections from the high Atlas Mountains in Morocco. Considerable variation between genotypes was found for all parameters. The ranges of protein content (11.58–14.5% of kernel dry weight, DW, oil content (54.4–67.48% of kernel DW, oleic (12.47–22.01% of total oil, linoleic (55.03–60.01%, linolenic (9.3–15.87%, palmitic (6.84–9.12%, and stearic (1.7–2.92% acid percentages, γ-tocopherol (188.1–230.7 mg·kg-1 of oil, δ-tocopherol (23.3–43.4 mg·kg-1, and α-tocopherol (8.9–16.57 mg·kg-1 contents agreed with previous results obtained from other commercial walnut cultivars. The effect of year was significant for all the chemical components, except for oil content and palmitic acid percentage. Some genotypes showed high oil contents and consistently high values of γ-tocopherol in both years of study. The introduction of these genotypes as new cultivars by vegetative propagation may result in a an increase in quality of the walnuts from the high Atlas Mountains of Morocco, and as a seed source for forest walnut propagation in the same region.Se determinó durante dos años el contenido en proteína y aceite, la composición en ácidos grasos y la concentración en tocoferoles en la pepita de diez plantones de nogal seleccionados en el Alto Atlas de Marruecos, encontrándose una considerable variación entre genotipos para todos los parámetros. Los rangos del contenido en proteína (11.58–14.5 % del peso seco, PS, contenido en aceite (54.4–67.48 % PS, porcentaje de ácido oleico (12.47–22.01% del aceite total, linoleico (55.03–60.01 %, linolénico (9.3–15.87 %, palmítico (6.84–9.12 %, y esteárico (1.7–2.92 %, contenido en γ-tocoferol (188.1–230.7 mg·kg−1 de aceite, δ-tocoferol (23.3–43.4 mg·kg−1 y α-tocoferol (8.9–16.57 mg·kg−1, coincidieron con

  1. A conceptual subsurface facility design for a high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.G., III; Bhattacharyya, K.K.; Segrest, A.M.

    1996-01-01

    The US Department of Energy is responsible for the design, construction, operation and closure of a repository in which to permanently dispose of the nation's high level nuclear waste. In addition to the objective of safely isolating the waste inventory, the repository must provide a safe working environment for its workforce, and protect the public. The conceptual design for this facility is currently being developed. Tunnel Boring Machine will be used to excavate 228 kilometers of tunneling to construct the facility over a 30 year period. The excavation operations will be physically separated from the waste emplacement operations, and each operation will have its own dedicated ventilation system. The facility is being designed to remain open for 150 years

  2. Draft Environmental Impact Statement for a Geologic Repository for the Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste at Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    The Proposed Action addressed in this EIS is to construct, operate and monitor, and eventually close a geologic repository at Yucca Mountain in southern Nevada for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste currently in storage at 72 commercial and 5 DOE sites across the United States. The EIS evaluates (1) projected impacts on the Yucca Mountain environment of the construction, operation and monitoring, and eventual closure of the geologic repository; (2) the potential long-term impacts of repository disposal of spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste; (3) the potential impacts of transporting these materials nationally and in the State of Nevada; and (4) the potential impacts of not proceeding with the Proposed Action

  3. Species-environment interactions changed by introduced herbivores in an oceanic high-mountain ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seguí, Jaume; López-Darias, Marta; Pérez, Antonio J; Nogales, Manuel; Traveset, Anna

    2017-01-05

    Summit areas of oceanic islands constitute some of the most isolated ecosystems on earth, highly vulnerable to climate change and introduced species. Within the unique high-elevation communities of Tenerife (Canary Islands), reproductive success and thus long-term survival of species may depend on environmental suitability as well as threat by introduced herbivores. By experimentally modifying the endemic and vulnerable species Viola cheiranthifolia along its entire altitudinal occurrence range, we studied plant performance, autofertility, pollen limitation and visitation rate and the interactive effect of grazing by non-native rabbits on them. We assessed the grazing effects by recording (1) the proportion of consumed plants and flowers along the gradient, (2) comparing fitness traits of herbivore-excluded plants along the gradient, and (3) comparing fitness traits, autofertility and pollen limitation between plants excluded from herbivores with unexcluded plants at the same locality. Our results showed that V. cheiranthifolia performance is mainly affected by inter-annual and microhabitat variability along the gradient, especially in the lowest edge. Despite the increasingly adverse environmental conditions, the plant showed no pollen limitation with elevation, which is attributed to the increase in autofertility levels (≥ 50% of reproductive output) and decrease in competition for pollinators at higher elevations. Plant fitness is, however, extremely reduced owing to the presence of non-native rabbits in the area (consuming more than 75% of the individuals in some localities), which in turn change plant trait-environment interactions along the gradient. Taken together, these findings indicate that the elevational variation found on plant performance results from the combined action of non-native rabbits with the microhabitat variability, exerting intricate ecological influences that threaten the survival of this violet species. Published by Oxford University

  4. Vegetation of high-altitude fens and restio marshlands of the Hottentots Holland Mountains, Western Cape, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. J. J. Sieben

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Seepages occurring at high altitudes in the Hottentots Holland Mountains (HHM (Western Cape Province. South Africa were subject to a phytosociological survey. Relevé sampling method and classification procedures of the floristic-sociological (Braun-Blanquet approach as well as numerical data analyses (numerical classification and ordination were used to reveal syn- taxonomic patterns and characterize the position of the syntaxa along major environmental gradients. Nine plant communities were recognized, three of which were classified as associations, following formal syntaxonomic and nomenclatural rules of the floristic-sociological approach Most of the studied mire communities were dominated by low-growing clonal restios (Restionaceae. whereas some consisted of other types of graminoids. The most important species determining the structure (and function of the mire communities on sandstones of the HHM include restios Anthochortus crinalis, Chondropetalum deustum.C. mucronatum, Elegia intermedia. E. thyrsifera. Restio subtilis. R. purpurascens. cyperoids Epischoenus villosus. Ficinia argy-ropa, grasses Ehrharta setacea subsp. setacea. Pentameris hirtiglumis as well as shrubs Berzelia squarrosa. Cliffortia tricuspi- data. Erica intenallaris and Grubbia rosmarinifolia. Protea lacticolor and Restio perplexus dominate a rare shale band seep­age community. There are two major groups of communities—the fens (dominated by carpets of Anthochortus crinalis and other low-growing species and the restio marshlands (mosaics of low tussocks of Restio subtilis and tall Chondropetalum mucrona­tum. The degree of soil (and water minerotrophy was found to be the most important differentiating feature between the mire (fen and restio marshland communities studied. The soils in the centre of mires were found to have high contents of peat and showed very little influence from the underlying sandstone. The soils along the mire margins had a greater admixture of

  5. High mortality associated with tapeworm parasitism in geladas (Theropithecus gelada) in the Simien Mountains National Park, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider-Crease, India; Griffin, Randi H; Gomery, Megan A; Bergman, Thore J; Beehner, Jacinta C

    2017-09-01

    Despite increasing appreciation for parasitism as an important component of primate ecology and evolution, surprisingly few studies have demonstrated the costs of helminth parasitism in primates. Detecting parasite-related costs in primates is particularly difficult because it requires detailed, long-term data on individual host reproductive success, survival, and parasitism. The identification of the larval tapeworm Taenia serialis in geladas under intensive long-term study in the Ethiopian Highlands (Nguyen et al. [2015] American Journal of Primatology, 77:579-594; Schneider-Crease et al. [2013] Veterinary Parasitology 198:240-243) provides an opportunity to examine how an endemic parasite impacts host reproductive success and survival. We used survival analyses to assess the mortality risk associated with protuberant larval cysts characteristic of T. serialis using a decade of data from a gelada population in the Simien Mountains National Park (SMNP), Ethiopia. We demonstrated strikingly high mortality associated with T. serialis cysts in adult females, particularly for younger adults. The estimated effect of cysts on male mortality was similar, although the effect was not statistically significant, likely owing to the smaller sample size. Additionally, the offspring of mothers with cysts experienced increased mortality, which was driven almost entirely by maternal death. Mothers with cysts had such high mortality that they rarely completed an interbirth interval. Comparison with a study of this parasite in another gelada population on the Guassa Plateau (Nguyen et al. [2015] American Journal of Primatology, 77:579-594) revealed lower cyst prevalence in the SMNP and similar cyst-associated mortality. However, many more females with cysts completed interbirth intervals at Guassa than in the SMNP, suggesting that T. serialis cysts may kill hosts more rapidly in the SMNP. Our results point toward the underlying causes of individual and population

  6. Sensitivity of Support Vector Machine Predictions of Passive Microwave Brightness Temperature Over Snow-covered Terrain in High Mountain Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, J. A.; Forman, B. A.

    2017-12-01

    High Mountain Asia (HMA) serves as a water supply source for over 1.3 billion people, primarily in south-east Asia. Most of this water originates as snow (or ice) that melts during the summer months and contributes to the run-off downstream. In spite of its critical role, there is still considerable uncertainty regarding the total amount of snow in HMA and its spatial and temporal variation. In this study, the NASA Land Information Systems (LIS) is used to model the hydrologic cycle over the Indus basin. In addition, the ability of support vector machines (SVM), a machine learning technique, to predict passive microwave brightness temperatures at a specific frequency and polarization as a function of LIS-derived land surface model output is explored in a sensitivity analysis. Multi-frequency, multi-polarization passive microwave brightness temperatures as measured by the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer - Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) over the Indus basin are used as training targets during the SVM training process. Normalized sensitivity coefficients (NSC) are then computed to assess the sensitivity of a well-trained SVM to each LIS-derived state variable. Preliminary results conform with the known first-order physics. For example, input states directly linked to physical temperature like snow temperature, air temperature, and vegetation temperature have positive NSC's whereas input states that increase volume scattering such as snow water equivalent or snow density yield negative NSC's. Air temperature exhibits the largest sensitivity coefficients due to its inherent, high-frequency variability. Adherence of this machine learning algorithm to the first-order physics bodes well for its potential use in LIS as the observation operator within a radiance data assimilation system aimed at improving regional- and continental-scale snow estimates.

  7. Affordable High-Performance Homes: The 2002 NREL Denver Habitat for Humanity House, A Cold-Climate Case Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2005-04-01

    Habitat for Humanity affiliates throughout the U.S. are taking the lead on an integrated systems-design approach to building homes that are more efficient, more comfortable, more affordable, and more durable than homes built with standard practices.

  8. YUCCA MOUNTAIN PROJECT - A BRIEFING -

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2003-01-01

    This report has the following articles: Nuclear waste--a long-term national problem; Spent nuclear fuel; High-level radioactive waste; Radioactivity and the environment; Current storage methods; Disposal options; U.S. policy on nuclear waste; The focus on Yucca Mountain; The purpose and scope of the Yucca Mountain Project; The approach for permanently disposing of waste; The scientific studies at Yucca Mountain; The proposed design for a repository at Yucca Mountain; Natural and engineered barriers would work together to isolate waste; Meticulous science and technology to protect people and the environment; Licensing a repository; Transporting waste to a permanent repository; The Environmental Impact Statement for a repository; Current status of the Yucca Mountain Project; and Further information available on the Internet

  9. Phylogeography of a habitat specialist with high dispersal capability: the Savi's Warbler Locustella luscinioides.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Júlio M Neto

    Full Text Available In order to describe the influence of Pleistocene glaciations on the genetic structure and demography of a highly mobile, but specialized, passerine, the Savi's Warbler (Locustella luscinioides, mitochondrial DNA sequences (ND2 and microsatellites were analysed in c.330 individuals of 17 breeding and two wintering populations. Phylogenetic, population genetics and coalescent methods were used to describe the genetic structure, determine the timing of the major splits and model the demography of populations. Savi's Warblers split from its sister species c.8 million years ago and have two major haplotype groups that diverged in the early/middle Pleistocene. One of these clades originated in the Balkans and is currently widespread, showing strong evidence for population expansion; whereas the other is restricted to Iberia and remained stable. Microsatellites agreed with a genetic break around the Pyrenees, but showed considerable introgression and a weaker genetic structure. Both genetic markers showed an isolation-by-distance pattern associated with the population expansion of the eastern clade. Breeding populations seem to be segregated at the wintering sites, but results on migratory connectivity are preliminary. Savi's Warbler is the only known migratory bird species in which Iberian birds did not expand beyond the Pyrenees after the last glaciation. Despite the long period of independent evolution of western and eastern populations, complete introgression occurred when these groups met in Iberia. Mitochondrial sequences indicated the existence of refugia-within-refugia in the Iberian Peninsula during the last glacial period, which is surprising given the high dispersal capacity of this species. Plumage differences of eastern subspecies seemed to have evolved recently through natural selection, in agreement with the glacial expansion hypothesis. This study supports the great importance of the Iberian Peninsula and its role for the conservation

  10. Fluvial sediment transport in a glacier-fed high-mountain river (Riffler Bach, Austrian Alps)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morche, David; Weber, Martin; Faust, Matthias; Schuchardt, Anne; Baewert, Henning

    2017-04-01

    High-alpine environments are strongly affected by glacier retreat since the Little Ice Age (LIA). Due to ongoing climate change the hydrology of proglacial rivers is also influenced. It is expected that the growing proportions of snow melt and rainfall events will change runoff characteristics of proglacial rivers. Additionally, the importance of paraglacial sediment sources in recently deglaciating glacier forefields is increasing, while the role of glacial erosion is declining. Thus complex environmental conditions leading to a complex pattern of fluvial sediment transport in partly glaciated catchments of the European Alps. Under the umbrella of the joint PROSA-project the fluvial sediment transport of the river Riffler Bach (Kaunertal, Tyrol, Austria) was studied in 3 consecutive ablation seasons in order to quantify sediment yields. In June 2012 a probe for water level and an automatic water sampler (AWS) were installed at the outlet of the catchment (20km2). In order to calculate annual stage-discharge-relations by the rating-curve approach, discharge (Q) was repeatedly measured with current meters and by salt dilution. Concurrent to the discharge measurements bed load was collected using a portable Helley-Smith sampler. Bed load samples were weighted and sieved in the laboratory to gain annual bed load rating curves and grain size distributions. In total 564 (2012: 154, 2013: 209, 2014: 201) water samples were collected and subsequently filtered to quantify suspended sediment concentrations (SSC). Q-SSC-relations were calculated for single flood events due to the high variability of suspended sediment transport. The results show a high inter- and intra-annual variability of solid fluvial sediment transport, which can be explained by the characteristics of suspended sediment transport. Only 13 of 22 event-based Q-SSC-relations show causal dependency. In 2012, during a period with multiple pluvial-induced peak discharges most sediment was transported. On the

  11. Distribution and Dynamic Habitat Use of Young Bull Sharks Carcharhinus leucas in a Highly Stratified Northern Gulf of Mexico Estuary

    OpenAIRE

    Drymon, J. Marcus; Ajemian, Matthew J.; Powers, Sean P.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding how animals alter habitat use in response to changing abiotic conditions is important for effective conservation management. For bull sharks (Carcharhinus leucas), habitat use has been widely examined in the eastern and western Gulf of Mexico; however, knowledge of their movements and the factors influencing them is lacking for populations in the more temperate north-central Gulf of Mexico. To examine how changes in hydrographic conditions affected the presence of young bull sha...

  12. Fish assemblage structure and relations with environmental conditions in a Rocky Mountain watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quist, M.C.; Hubert, W.A.; Isaak, D.J.

    2004-01-01

    Fish and habitat were sampled from 110 reaches in the Salt River basin (Idaho and Wyoming) during 1996 and 1997 to assess patterns in fish assemblage structure across a Rocky Mountain watershed. We identified four distinct fish assemblages using cluster analysis: (1) allopatric cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki (Richardson, 1836)); (2) cutthroat trout - brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis (Mitchell, 1814)) - Paiute sculpin (Cottus beldingi Eigenmann and Eigenmann, 1891); (3) cutthroat trout - brown trout (Salmo trutta L., 1758) - mottled sculpin (Cottus bairdi Girard, 1850); and (4) Cyprinidae-Catostomidae. The distribution of fish assemblages was explained by thermal characteristics, stream geomorphology, and local habitat features. Reaches with allopatric cutthroat trout and the cutthroat trout - brook trout - Paiute sculpin assemblage were located in high-elevation, high-gradient streams. The other two fish assemblages were generally located in low-elevation streams. Associations between habitat gradients, locations of reaches in the watershed, and occurrence of species were further examined using canonical correspondence analysis. The results suggest that stream geomorphology, thermal conditions, and local habitat characteristics influence fish assemblage structure across a Rocky Mountain watershed, and they provide information on the ecology of individual species that can guide conservation activities. ?? 2004 NRC Canada.

  13. Effects of perched water on thermally driven moisture flow at the proposed Yucca Mountain repository for high-level waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ofoegbu, G.I.; Bagtzoglou, A.C.; Green, R.T.; Muller, M.A.

    1999-01-01

    Numerical modeling was conducted to identify potential perched-water sites and examine the effects of perched water on thermally driven moisture flow at the proposed Yucca Mountain repository for high-level nuclear waste. It is demonstrated that perched-water zones may occur at two horizons on the up-dip side of faults such as the Ghost Dance Fault (GDF): in nonwelded volcanic strata [such as the Paintbrush Tuff nonwelded (PTn) stratigraphic unit], where juxtaposition of welded strata against nonwelded may constitute a barrier to lateral flow within the nonwelded strata; and in fractured horizons of underlying welded units [such as the Topopah Spring welded (TSw) unit] because of focused infiltration fed by overlying perched zones. The potential perched zones (PPZs) may contain perched water (which would flow freely into a well or opening) if infiltration rates are high enough. At lower infiltration rates, the PPZs contain only capillary-held water at relatively high saturations. Areas of the proposed repository that lie below PPZs are likely to experience relatively high percolation flux even if the PPZ contains only capillary-held water at high saturation. As a result, PPZs that contain only capillary-held water may be as important to repository performance as those that contain perched water. Thermal loading from emplaced waste in the repository is not likely to have an effect on PPZs located on adequate distance above the repository (such as in the PTn). As a result, such PPZs may be considered as permanent features of the environment. On the other hand, PPZs close to the repository depth (such as those that may occur in the TSw rock unit) would experience an initial period of spatial growth and increased saturation following waste emplacement. Thereafter, drying would begin at the repository horizon with perched-zone growth simultaneously above and below the repository. As a result, after the initial period of expansion, PPZs close to the repository horizon

  14. Origin and Distribution of PAHs in Ambient Particulate Samples at High Mountain Region in Southern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng-hui Li

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available To understand the deposition and transport of PAHs in southern China, a measurement campaign was conducted at a high-elevation site (the summit of Mount Heng, 1269 m A.S.L. from April 4 to May 31, 2009, and a total of 39 total suspended particulate samples were collected for measurement of PAH concentrations. The observed particulate-bound PAHs concentrations ranged from 1.63 to 29.83 ng/m3, with a mean concentration of 6.03 ng/m3. BbF, FLA, and PYR were the predominant compounds. Good correlations were found between individual PAHs and meteorological parameters such as atmospheric pressure, relative humidity, and ambient temperature. The backward trajectory analysis suggested that particulate samples measured at the Mount Heng region were predominantly associated with the air masses from southern China, while the air masses transported over northern and northwestern China had relative higher PAHs concentrations. Based on the diagnostic ratios and factor analysis, vehicular emission, coal combustion, industry emission, and unburned fossil fuels were suggested to be the PAHs sources at Mount Heng site. However, the reactivity and degradation of individual PAHs could influence the results of PAH source profiles, which deserves further investigations in the future.

  15. Local Geomorphology as a Determinant of Macrofaunal Production in a Mountain Stream.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huryn, Alexander D; Wallace, J Bruce

    1987-12-01

    By comparing distributions of functional group production among different habitats in an Appalachian mountain stream, the influence of site-specific geomorphology upon the overall functional group composition of the animal community was demonstrated. By replicated monthly sampling, substrate particle size distributions, current velocity, standing crops of benthic organic matter, and production of macrofauna were measured in each of three principal habitats: bedrock-outcrop, riffle, and pool. Samples were taken at randomly assigned locations and the relative number of samples taken from each habitat was assumed to be proportional to the area of the habitat within the stream. These proportions were used to weight production measured in each habitat and the resulting values were summed to obtain production per unit area of average stream bed. The bedrock-outcrop habitat was characterized by high material entertainment and export as indicated by significantly higher current velocities and lower standing crops of detritus compared to the riffle and pool habitats. Pools were sites of low entertainment and high retention of organic matter as demonstrated by significantly lower current velocities and higher accumulations of detritus than other habitats. The riffle habitat was intermediate to the bedrock-outcrop and pool habitats in all parameters measured. Annual production of collector-filterers was highest in the bedrock-outcrop (ash-free dry mass 1920 mg/m 2 ), followed by riffle (278 mg/m 2 ) and pool (32 mg/m 2 ). Although constituting only 19% of the stream area, the bedrock-outcrop habitat contributed 68% of the habitat-weighted collector-filterer production. Annual production of shredders was highest in pools (2616 mg/m 2 ), followed by riffles (1657 mg/m 2 ) and bedrock-outcrop (579 mg/m 2 ). The pool habitat, constituting 23% of stream area, contributed 36% of shredder production. Annual production of scrapers was highest in the riffle habitat (905 mg/m 2

  16. Frost resistance of reproductive tissues during various stages of development in high mountain plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuner, Gilbert; Erler, Agnes; Ladinig, Ursula; Hacker, Jürgen; Wagner, Johanna

    2013-01-01

    Frost resistance of reproductive vs aboveground vegetative structures was determined for six common European high alpine plant species that can be exposed to frosts throughout their whole reproductive cycle. Freezing tests were carried out in the bud, anthesis and fruit stage. Stigma and style, ovary, placenta, ovule, flower stalk/peduncle and, in Ranunculus glacialis, the receptacle were separately investigated. In all species, the vegetative organs tolerated on an average 2-5 K lower freezing temperatures than the most frost-susceptible reproductive structures that differed in their frost resistance. In almost all species, stigma, style and the flower stalk/peduncle were the most frost-susceptible reproductive structures. Initial frost damage (LT₁₀) to the most susceptible reproductive structure usually occurred between -2 and -4°C independent of the reproductive stage. The median LT₅₀ across species for stigma and style ranged between -3.4 and -3.7°C and matched the mean ice nucleation temperature (-3.7 ± 1.4°C). In R. glacialis, the flower stalk was the most frost-susceptible structure (-5.4°C), and was in contrast to the other species ice-tolerant. The ovule and the placenta were usually the most frost-resistant structures. During reproductive development, frost resistance (LT₅₀) of single reproductive structures mostly showed no significant change. However, significant increases or decreases were also observed (2.1 ± 1.2 K). Reproductive tissues of nival species generally tolerated lower temperatures than species occurring in the alpine zone. The low frost resistance of reproductive structures before, during and shortly after anthesis increases the probability of frost damage and thus, may restrict successful sexual plant reproduction with increasing altitude. Copyright © Physiologia Plantarum 2012.

  17. Investigations of hydro-tectonic hazards at the proposed Yucca Mountain high-level nuclear waste repository. Annual report - Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Livingston, D.E.

    1994-01-01

    This document includes several reports describing scientific studies of the origin of near surface calcite/silica deposits at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The origin of these deposits is controversial and the authors have extended and strengthened the basis of their arguments for epigenetic, metasomatic alteration of the tuffs at Yucca Mountain. This report includes stratigraphic, mineralogical, and geochronological information along with geochemical data to support the conclusions described by Livingston and Szymanski. Selected papers are indexed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database

  18. Vegetation and Cold Trapping Modulating Elevation-dependent Distribution of Trace Metals in Soils of a High Mountain in Eastern Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bing, Haijian; Wu, Yanhong; Zhou, Jun; Li, Rui; Luo, Ji; Yu, Dong

    2016-04-07

    Trace metals adsorbed onto fine particles can be transported long distances and ultimately deposited in Polar Regions via the cold condensation effect. This study indicated the possible sources of silver (Ag), cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), antimony (Sb) and zinc (Zn) in soils on the eastern slope of Mt. Gongga, eastern Tibetan Plateau, and deciphered the effects of vegetation and mountain cold condensation on their distributions with elevation. The metal concentrations in the soils were comparable to other mountains worldwide except the remarkably high concentrations of Cd. Trace metals with high enrichment in the soils were influenced from anthropogenic contributions. Spatially, the concentrations of Cu and Zn in the surface horizons decreased from 2000 to 3700 m a.s.l., and then increased with elevation, whereas other metals were notably enriched in the mid-elevation area (approximately 3000 m a.s.l.). After normalization for soil organic carbon, high concentrations of Cd, Pb, Sb and Zn were observed above the timberline. Our results indicated the importance of vegetation in trace metal accumulation in an alpine ecosystem and highlighted the mountain cold trapping effect on trace metal deposition sourced from long-range atmospheric transport.

  19. Yersinia pestis strains of ancient phylogenetic branch 0.ANT are widely spread in the high-mountain plague foci of Kyrgyzstan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eroshenko, Galina A; Nosov, Nikita Yu; Krasnov, Yaroslav M; Oglodin, Yevgeny G; Kukleva, Lyubov M; Guseva, Natalia P; Kuznetsov, Alexander A; Abdikarimov, Sabyrzhan T; Dzhaparova, Aigul K; Kutyrev, Vladimir V

    2017-01-01

    Fifty six Yersinia pestis strains, isolated over the period of more than 50 years in three high-mountain foci of Kyrgyzstan (Tien Shan, Alai, and Talas), have been characterized by means of PCR and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) typing methods. Seven of these strains were also characterized by means of whole genome sequencing and genome-wide SNP phylogenetic analysis. It was found that forty two strains belong to 0.ANT2, 0.ANT3 and 0.ANT5 phylogenetic branches. From these, strains of 0.ANT2 and 0.ANT3 branches were earlier detected in China only, whereas 0.ANT5 phylogenetic branch was identified for Y. pestis phylogeny for the first time. According to the results of genome-wide SNP analysis, 0.ANT5 strains are ones of the most closely related to Y. pestis strain responsible for the Justinianic Plague. We have also found out that four of the studied strains belong to the phylogenetic branch 2.MED1, and ten strains from Talas high-mountain focus belong to the phylogenetic branch 0.PE4 (sub-branch 0.PE4t). Established diversity of Y. pestis strains and extensive dissemination of the strains pertaining to the 0.ANT branch confirm the antiquity of the mentioned above plague foci and suggest that strains of the 0.ANT branch, which serve as precursors for all highly virulent Y. pestis strains, had their origin in the Tien Shan mountains.

  20. Altitudinal and thermal gradients of hepatic Cyp1A gene expression in natural populations of Salmo trutta from high mountain lakes and their correlation with organohalogen loads

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jarque, Sergio; Gallego, Eva [Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA-CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034-Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Bartrons, Mireia; Catalan, Jordi [Center for Advanced Studies of Blanes (CEAB-CSIC), Acces Cala St. Francesc 14, 17300-Blanes, Catalonia (Spain); Grimalt, Joan O. [Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA-CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034-Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Pina, Benjamin, E-mail: bpcbmc@cid.csic.e [Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA-CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034-Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain)

    2010-05-15

    The biomarker of xenobiotic exposure cytochrome p450A1 (Cyp1A) was used to analyze the biological response to chemical pollution in Salmo trutta (brown trout) from nine high mountain European lakes in Norway, Tatras, Tyrol, and central Pyrenees. Hepatic Cyp1A mRNA levels correlated both with the reciprocal of absolute annual average air temperatures of the sampled lakes and with muscle concentrations of several hydrophobic organohalogen compounds (OC), including chlorinated polychlorobiphenyls (PCB), DDE, and DDT. The correlation between Cyp1A expression and OC content was observed across the whole temperature range (between -0.7 deg. C and +6.2 deg. C), but also in the absence of any thermal gradient. We concluded that airborne pollutants accumulate in high mountain lake fish at concentrations high enough to increase Cyp1A expression, among other possible effects. As geographical distribution of semi-volatile OC is strongly influenced by air temperatures, future climate modifications will potentially enhance their physiological effects in lake ecosystems. - Altitudinal gradients of hepatic Cyp1A gene expression in mountain trout correlate with geographic and individual organohalogen distribution.

  1. High-resolution assessment of land use impacts on biodiversity in life cycle assessment using species habitat suitability models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Baan, Laura; Curran, Michael; Rondinini, Carlo; Visconti, Piero; Hellweg, Stefanie; Koellner, Thomas

    2015-02-17

    Agricultural land use is a main driver of global biodiversity loss. The assessment of land use impacts in decision-support tools such as life cycle assessment (LCA) requires spatially explicit models, but existing approaches are either not spatially differentiated or modeled at very coarse scales (e.g., biomes or ecoregions). In this paper, we develop a high-resolution (900 m) assessment method for land use impacts on biodiversity based on habitat suitability models (HSM) of mammal species. This method considers potential land use effects on individual species, and impacts are weighted by the species' conservation status and global rarity. We illustrate the method using a case study of crop production in East Africa, but the underlying HSMs developed by the Global Mammals Assessment are available globally. We calculate impacts of three major export crops and compare the results to two previously developed methods (focusing on local and regional impacts, respectively) to assess the relevance of the methodological innovations proposed in this paper. The results highlight hotspots of product-related biodiversity impacts that help characterize the links among agricultural production, consumption, and biodiversity loss.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuey, John A

    2013-12-05

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

  3. Cold-seep habitat mapping: High-resolution spatial characterization of the Blake Ridge Diapir seep field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Jamie K. S.; McEntee, Molly H.; Brothers, Laura L.; German, Christopher R.; Kaiser, Carl L.; Yoerger, Dana R.; Van Dover, Cindy Lee

    2013-08-01

    Relationships among seep community biomass, diversity, and physiographic controls such as underlying geology are not well understood. Previous efforts to constrain these relationships at the Blake Ridge Diapir were limited to observations from piloted deep-submergence vehicles. In August 2012, the autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) Sentry collected geophysical and photographic data over a 0.131 km2 area at the Blake Ridge Diapir seeps. A nested survey approach was used that began with a regional or reconnaissance-style survey using sub-bottom mapping systems to locate and identify seeps and underlying conduits. This survey was followed by AUV-mounted sidescan sonar and multibeam echosounder systems mapping on a mesoscale to characterize the seabed physiography. At the most detailed survey level, digital photographic imaging was used to resolve sub-meter characteristics of the biology. Four pockmarks (25-70 m diameter) were documented, each supporting chemosynthetic communities. Concentric zonation of mussels and clams suggests the influence of chemical gradients on megafaunal distribution. Data collection and analytical techniques used here yield high-resolution habitat maps that can serve as baselines to constrain temporal evolution of seafloor seeps, and to inform ecological niche modeling and resource management.

  4. Plant diversity and structure describe the presence of a new, threatened Australian marsupial within its highly restricted, post-fire habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Eugene D; Firn, Jennifer; Hines, Harry B; Baker, Andrew M

    2017-01-01

    Management of critical habitat for threatened species with small ranges requires location-specific, fine-scale survey data. The silver-headed antechinus (Antechinus argentus) is known from only two isolated, fire-prone locations. At least one of these populations, at Kroombit Tops National Park in central-eastern Queensland, Australia, possesses a very small range. Here, we present detailed vegetation species diversity and structure data from three sites comprising the known habitat of A. argentus at Kroombit Tops and relate it to capture data obtained over two years. We found differences in both vegetation and capture data between burnt and unburnt habitat. Leaf litter and grasstrees (Xanthorrhoea johnsonii) were the strongest vegetative predictors for A. argentus capture. The species declined considerably over the two years of the trapping study, and we raise concern for its survival at Kroombit Tops. We suggest that future work should focus on structural vegetative variables (specifically, the diameter and leaf density of grasstree crowns) and relate them to A. argentus occurrence. We also recommend a survey of invertebrate diversity in grasstrees and leaf litter with a comparison to A. argentus prey. The data presented here illustrates how critical detailed monitoring is for planning habitat management and fire regimes, and highlights the utility of a high-resolution approach to habitat mapping. While a traditional approach to fire management contends that pyrodiversity encourages biodiversity, the present study demonstrates that some species prefer long-unburnt habitat. Additionally, in predicting the distribution of rare species like A. argentus, data quality (i.e., spatial resolution) may prevail over data quantity (i.e., number of data).

  5. ON THE QUESTION OF THE REVIVAL OF THE ANCIENT MOUNTAIN VILLAGES (AULS OF DAGHESTAN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aniyat A. Abasova

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract. Aim. The aim of the research is to analyze the reasons for the migration of mountain people to the plain, the identification of the most significant stages of the resettlement movement in the Republic of Dagestan, the identification of ways to preserve and revive the mountain villages of Dagestan. Discussion. At present, the outflow of population from mountainous areas to flat land is actively continuing which leads to the abandonment of dozens of mountain villages. Therefore, in modern conditions, the urgent task is to preserve and revive the mountain villages of Dagestan. For this, first of all, the creation of a developed infrastructure, high-quality medical care and education, as well as the revival of traditional forms of land use, horticulture and cattle breeding, creation of new jobs are necessary in mountainous areas. The traditional habitat should be attractive for young people. The understanding of the problem of preservation and revival of the mountainous regions of Dagestan exists not only at the governmental level but also in Dagestan society as a whole. It is shown that the natural-historical and cultural complexes of Dagestan should be used for the development of various types of tourism, especially cultural-cognitive and ethno-tourism, ecological and religious tourism. Conclusion. Almost every ancient mountain village of Dagestan is actually an ethnographic museum in the open air, therefore the development of the tourism industry, in particular cultural-cognitive and ethno-tourism, will contribute to the preservation and revival of ancient auls in the republic.

  6. Habitat Use and Trophic Structure in a Highly Migratory Predatory Fish Identified with Geochemical Proxies in Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seeley, M.; Walther, B. D.

    2016-02-01

    Atlantic tarpon, Megalops atlanticus, are highly migratory euryhaline predators that occupy different habitats throughout ontogeny. Specifically, Atlantic tarpon are known to inhabit oligohaline waters, although the frequency and duration of movements across estuarine gradients into these waters are relatively unknown. This species supports over a two billion dollar industry within the Gulf of Mexico and is currently listed as vulnerable under the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). A new non-lethal method for reconstructing migrations across estuaries relies on trace element and stable isotope compositions of growth increments in scales. We analyzed Atlantic tarpon scales from the Texas coast to validate this method using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) for trace elements and isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IR-MS) for stable isotope ratios. Multiple scales were also taken from the same individual to confirm the consistency of elemental uptake within the same individual. Results show that scale Ba:Ca, Sr:Ca and δ13C are effective proxies for salinity, while enrichments in δ15N are consistent with known ontogenetic trophic shifts. In addition, chemical transects across multiple scales from the same individual were highly consistent, suggesting that any non-regenerated scale removed from a fish can provide equivalent time series. Continuous life history profiles of scales were obtained via laser ablation transects of scale cross-sections to quantify trace element concentrations from the core (youngest increments) to the edge (oldest increments). Stable isotope and trace element results together indicate that behavior is highly variable between individuals, with some but not all fish transiting estuarine gradients into oligohaline waters. Our findings will provide novel opportunities to investigate alternative non-lethal methods to monitor fish migrations across chemical gradients.

  7. Assessment of nocturnal aerosol optical depth from lunar photometry at the Izaña high mountain observatory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Á. Barreto

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This work is a first approach to correct the systematic errors observed in the aerosol optical depth (AOD retrieved at nighttime using lunar photometry and calibration techniques dependent on the lunar irradiance model. To this end, nocturnal AOD measurements were performed in 2014 using the CE318-T master Sun–sky–lunar photometer (lunar Langley calibrated at the Izaña high mountain observatory. This information has been restricted to 59 nights characterized as clean and stable according to lidar vertical profiles. A phase angle dependence as well as an asymmetry within the Moon's cycle of the Robotic Lunar Observatory (ROLO model could be deduced from the comparison in this 59-night period of the CE318-T calibration performed by means of the lunar Langley calibration and the calibration performed every single night by means of the common Langley technique. Nocturnal AOD has also been compared in the same period with a reference AOD based on daylight AOD extracted from the AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET at the same station. Considering stable conditions, the difference ΔAODfit, between AOD from lunar observations and the linearly interpolated AOD (the reference from daylight data, has been calculated. The results show that ΔAODfit values are strongly affected by the Moon phase and zenith angles. This dependency has been parameterized using an empirical model with two independent variables (Moon phase and zenith angles in order to correct the AOD for these residual dependencies. The correction of this parameterized dependency has been checked at four stations with quite different environmental conditions (Izaña, Lille, Carpentras and Dakar showing a significant reduction of the AOD dependence on phase and zenith angles and an improved agreement with daylight reference data. After the correction, absolute AOD differences for day–night–day clean and stable transitions remain below 0.01 for all wavelengths.

  8. Monitoring of Vegetation Impact Due to Trampling on Cadillac Mountain Summit Using High Spatial Resolution Remote Sensing Data Sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Min-Kook; Daigle, John J.

    2012-11-01

    Cadillac Mountain—the highest peak along the eastern seaboard of the United States—is a major tourist destination in Acadia National Park, Maine. Managing vegetation impact due to trampling on the Cadillac Mountain summit is extremely challenging because of the large number of visitors and the general open nature of landscape in this fragile subalpine environmental setting. Since 2000, more intensive management strategies—based on placing physical barriers and educational messages for visitors—have been employed to protect threatened vegetation, decrease vegetation impact, and enhance vegetation recovery in the vicinity of the summit loop trail. The primary purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of the management strategies employed. For this purpose, vegetation cover changes between 2001 and 2007 were detected using multispectral high spatial resolution remote sensing data sets. A normalized difference vegetation index was employed to identify the rates of increase and decrease in the vegetation areas. Three buffering distances (30, 60, and 90 m) from the edges of the trail were used to define multiple spatial extents of the site, and the same spatial extents were employed at a nearby control site that had no visitors. No significant differences were detected between the mean rates of vegetation increase and decrease at the experimental site compared with a nearby control site in the case of a small spatial scale (≤30 m) comparison (in all cases P > 0.05). However, in the medium (≤60 m) and large (≤90 m) spatial scales, the rates of increased vegetation were significantly greater and rates of decreased vegetation significantly lower at the experimental site compared with the control site (in all cases P Management implications are explored in terms of the spatial strategies used to decrease the impact of trampling on vegetation.

  9. Risk factors for fatal outcome from rocky mountain spotted Fever in a highly endemic area-Arizona, 2002-2011.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, Joanna J; Traeger, Marc S; Humpherys, Dwight; Mahoney, Dianna L; Martinez, Michelle; Emerson, Ginny L; Tack, Danielle M; Geissler, Aimee; Yasmin, Seema; Lawson, Regina; Williams, Velda; Hamilton, Charlene; Levy, Craig; Komatsu, Ken; Yost, David A; McQuiston, Jennifer H

    2015-06-01

    Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) is a disease that now causes significant morbidity and mortality on several American Indian reservations in Arizona. Although the disease is treatable, reported RMSF case fatality rates from this region are high (7%) compared to the rest of the nation (<1%), suggesting a need to identify clinical points for intervention. The first 205 cases from this region were reviewed and fatal RMSF cases were compared to nonfatal cases to determine clinical risk factors for fatal outcome. Doxycycline was initiated significantly later in fatal cases (median, day 7) than nonfatal cases (median, day 3), although both groups of case patients presented for care early (median, day 2). Multiple factors increased the risk of doxycycline delay and fatal outcome, such as early symptoms of nausea and diarrhea, history of alcoholism or chronic lung disease, and abnormal laboratory results such as elevated liver aminotransferases. Rash, history of tick bite, thrombocytopenia, and hyponatremia were often absent at initial presentation. Earlier treatment with doxycycline can decrease morbidity and mortality from RMSF in this region. Recognition of risk factors associated with doxycycline delay and fatal outcome, such as early gastrointestinal symptoms and a history of alcoholism or chronic lung disease, may be useful in guiding early treatment decisions. Healthcare providers should have a low threshold for initiating doxycycline whenever treating febrile or potentially septic patients from tribal lands in Arizona, even if an alternative diagnosis seems more likely and classic findings of RMSF are absent. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Infectious Diseases Society of America 2015. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  10. High mountain soils and periglacial features at the Torres del Paine, National Park Torres del Paine, Chile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senra, Eduardo; Schaefer, Carlos; Simas, Felipe; Gjorup, Davi

    2015-04-01

    The Torres del Paine National Park (TPNP) is located on the southern limit of the Andean Southern Ice Field, part of the Magallanes and Antartica Chilena region, in the province of Ultima Esperanza. The TPNP has a very heterogeneous climate due to orographic influence and wet air masses from the Pacific. The geology is basically Cretaceous metasedimentary rocks and Miocene granitic plutons and batholiths. We studied the main soils and geoenvironments of Mt Ferrier mountain and its surroundings, based on soils , landforms and vegetation aspects. The geoenvironmental stratification was based on the combined variation and integration of pedo-litho-geomorphological features with the vegetation. WE used detailed geological maps, a DEM and slope maps and WorlView II satellite images. Fifteen soils profiles were sampled and classified according to Soil Taxonomy (2010) at all genovironments, ranging from 50 m a.s.l to the at high plateau just below the permanent snowline, under periglacial conditions (~1004m asl). Three soil temperature and moisture monitoring sites were set, allowing for 24 consecutive months (2011 to 2013). Seven geoenvironments were identified with distinct soil and landform characteristics, all with a similar geological substrate. The landform and vegetation have a strong connection with the landscape dynamic, controlling erosional and depositional processes, resulting from glacier advances and retreats in the Late Quaternary. Wind blown materials is widespread, in the form of loess material, accumulating in the higher parts of the landscape. On the other hand, accumulation of organic matter in the water-saturated depressions is common in all altitudes. Generally the soils are acidic and dystrophic, with little exceptions. The following geoenvironments were identified: Periglacial Tundra, Loess slopes, Talus and scarpmentd, Fluvio-glacial terraces, Fluvio-lacustrine plains, Moraines and Paleodunes. The regional pedology show the occurrence of five soil

  11. Species diversity and drivers of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities in a semi-arid mountain in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Zhao

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF play an essential role in complex ecosystems. However, the species diversity and composition of AMF communities remain unclear in semi-arid mountains. Further, it is not well understood if the characteristics of AMF community assemblies differ for different habitat types, e.g., agricultural arable land, artificial forest land, natural grassland, and bush/wood land. Here, using the high-throughput technology by Illumina sequencing on the MiSeq platform, we explored the species diversity and composition of soil AMF communities among different habitat types in a semi-arid mountain (Taihang Mountain, Mid-western region of China. Then, we analyzed the effect of nutrient composition and soil texture on AMF community assembly. Our results showed that members of the Glomus genera were predominated in all soil types. The distance-based redundancy analysis indicated that the content of water, available phosphorus, and available potassium were the most crucial geochemical factors that significantly affected AMF communities (p < 0.05. The analysis of the soil texture confirmed that AMF diversity was negatively correlated with soil clay content. The comparison of AMF diversity among the various habitat types revealed that the artificial forest land had the lowest AMF diversity in comparison with other land types. Our findings suggest that there were differences in species diversity and composition of soil AMF communities among different habitat types. These findings shed new light on the characteristics of community structure and drivers of community assembly in AMF in semi-arid mountains, and point to the potential importance of different habitat types on AMF communities.

  12. High diversity and morphological convergence among melanised fungi from rock formations in the Central Mountain System of Spain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ruibal, C.; Platas, G.; Bills, G.F.

    2008-01-01

    Melanised fungi were isolated from rock surfaces in the Central Mountain System of Spain. Two hundred sixty six isolates were recovered from four geologically and topographically distinct sites. Microsatellite-primed PCR techniques were used to group isolates into genotypes assumed to represent

  13. The use of performance assessment for the potential high-level radioactive waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Joon H.; Andrews, R. W.

    1997-01-01

    This paper covers the introduction and overview of the Yucca Mountain site, the overview of waste package and EBS design, the organization of CRWMS M and O, the overview of total system performance assessment (TSPA), the components of TSPA model, the examples results of TSPA component models, and the example results of TSPA scoping sensitivity analyses. 22 figs

  14. Massive post-fire flowering events in a tropical mountain region of Brazil: high episodic supply of floral resources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abel Augusto Conceição

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The species Vellozia sincorana L.B.Sm. & Ayensu is key to biodiversity conservation in the tropical mountain region of Brazil. The massive post-fire flowering of this endemic species provides a large, episodic supply of floral resources, mostly nectar, to animals.

  15. Spatiotemporal patterns of High Mountain Asia's snowmelt season identified with an automated snowmelt detection algorithm, 1987-2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Taylor; Bookhagen, Bodo; Rheinwalt, Aljoscha

    2017-10-01

    High Mountain Asia (HMA) - encompassing the Tibetan Plateau and surrounding mountain ranges - is the primary water source for much of Asia, serving more than a billion downstream users. Many catchments receive the majority of their yearly water budget in the form of snow, which is poorly monitored by sparse in situ weather networks. Both the timing and volume of snowmelt play critical roles in downstream water provision, as many applications - such as agriculture, drinking-water generation, and hydropower - rely on consistent and predictable snowmelt runoff. Here, we examine passive microwave data across HMA with five sensors (SSMI, SSMIS, AMSR-E, AMSR2, and GPM) from 1987 to 2016 to track the timing of the snowmelt season - defined here as the time between maximum passive microwave signal separation and snow clearance. We validated our method against climate model surface temperatures, optical remote-sensing snow-cover data, and a manual control dataset (n = 2100, 3 variables at 25 locations over 28 years); our algorithm is generally accurate within 3-5 days. Using the algorithm-generated snowmelt dates, we examine the spatiotemporal patterns of the snowmelt season across HMA. The climatically short (29-year) time series, along with complex interannual snowfall variations, makes determining trends in snowmelt dates at a single point difficult. We instead identify trends in snowmelt timing by using hierarchical clustering of the passive microwave data to determine trends in self-similar regions. We make the following four key observations. (1) The end of the snowmelt season is trending almost universally earlier in HMA (negative trends). Changes in the end of the snowmelt season are generally between 2 and 8 days decade-1 over the 29-year study period (5-25 days total). The length of the snowmelt season is thus shrinking in many, though not all, regions of HMA. Some areas exhibit later peak signal separation (positive trends), but with generally smaller magnitudes

  16. Spatiotemporal patterns of High Mountain Asia's snowmelt season identified with an automated snowmelt detection algorithm, 1987–2016

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Smith

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available High Mountain Asia (HMA – encompassing the Tibetan Plateau and surrounding mountain ranges – is the primary water source for much of Asia, serving more than a billion downstream users. Many catchments receive the majority of their yearly water budget in the form of snow, which is poorly monitored by sparse in situ weather networks. Both the timing and volume of snowmelt play critical roles in downstream water provision, as many applications – such as agriculture, drinking-water generation, and hydropower – rely on consistent and predictable snowmelt runoff. Here, we examine passive microwave data across HMA with five sensors (SSMI, SSMIS, AMSR-E, AMSR2, and GPM from 1987 to 2016 to track the timing of the snowmelt season – defined here as the time between maximum passive microwave signal separation and snow clearance. We validated our method against climate model surface temperatures, optical remote-sensing snow-cover data, and a manual control dataset (n = 2100, 3 variables at 25 locations over 28 years; our algorithm is generally accurate within 3–5 days. Using the algorithm-generated snowmelt dates, we examine the spatiotemporal patterns of the snowmelt season across HMA. The climatically short (29-year time series, along with complex interannual snowfall variations, makes determining trends in snowmelt dates at a single point difficult. We instead identify trends in snowmelt timing by using hierarchical clustering of the passive microwave data to determine trends in self-similar regions. We make the following four key observations. (1 The end of the snowmelt season is trending almost universally earlier in HMA (negative trends. Changes in the end of the snowmelt season are generally between 2 and 8 days decade−1 over the 29-year study period (5–25 days total. The length of the snowmelt season is thus shrinking in many, though not all, regions of HMA. Some areas exhibit later peak signal separation (positive

  17. Oil patch fitting in with wildlife habitat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lea, N.

    2003-06-01

    Changes in grizzly bear and caribou populations associated with roads, seismic lines, and pipelines are of great concern to the oil, gas and forestry industries since the presence of structures are providing easier access to wildlife habitats for predatory wolves and humans. This article provides details of this concern and describes efforts, such as the Caribou Range Recovery Project, towards mitigating the impact of the industry and hastening the reclamation of the woodland caribou habitat disturbed by humans. This project, funded by a consortium of government, industry and the University of Alberta, is a three-year project which focuses on the revegetation of disturbed areas in the highly-impacted caribou ranges of northern and west-central Alberta, the development of a preliminary set of guidelines for reclamation of industrial developments in caribou ranges, development of a long-term monitoring strategy for assessing the success of these reclamation efforts, and on promoting First Nations involvement through consultation and participation. Previous projects focused on Little Smoky, Redrock, Red Earth, and Stony Mountain areas. Details are also provided of the Foot Hills Model Forest Grizzly Bear Research project, a five-year, $3 million study deigned to ensure healthy grizzly bear populations in west-central Alberta by better integrating their needs into land management decisions.

  18. Impacts of 1.5°C warming on high mountain systems: state of knowledge, challenges and the way forward

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huggel, Christian; Salzmann, Nadine; Allen, Simon; Frey, Holger; Haeberli, Wilfried; Linsbauer, Andreas; Paul, Frank

    2016-04-01

    Recently, both in science and policy, discussions have intensified about whether the 2°C 'guardrail' can really be considered a safety margin, i.e. natural and human systems would be reasonably safe when global warming can be limited to below 2°C with reference to preindustrial levels. Concerns about the 'safety' of the 2°C warming mounted especially with reference to highly vulnerable systems such as small islands, polar regions and high mountains where 2°C may imply crossing thresholds with major irreversible impacts. Several countries and organizations therefore called for a 1.5°C target, and it was one of the remarkable aspects of the Paris Climate Conference in December 2015 that 1.5°C was explicitly included in the Paris Agreement. However, scientifically, little is known about the difference between 1.5°C and 2°C warming in terms of impacts on natural and human systems. This was also corroborated by the final report of the UNFCCC Structured Expert Dialogue (SED) which was based on the outcomes of the IPCC 5th Assessment Report and subsequent expert discussions. Here we respond to this gap and challenge of understanding the differences of impacts as related to 1.5°C and 2°C above preindustrial levels. We concentrate on high mountains and impacts related to changes in the cryosphere because these systems are very sensitive to climatic changes (in particular to the key climate variables temperature and precipitation) and acknowledged as highly vulnerable areas. We start with a systematic literature review and find that the mountain research community has addressed this issue only in a marginal way. We then develop a conceptual but evidence-based model how this challenge could be addressed: We suggest to first study the changes and corresponding impacts seen in high mountain systems since the Little Ice Age focusing on specified periods with 0.5°C global warming (corresponding regional warming, for instance in the Swiss Alps, in these periods was

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2003-01-01

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

  20. High levels of reactive gaseous mercury observed at a high elevation research laboratory in the Rocky Mountains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X. Faïn

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available The chemical cycling and spatiotemporal distribution of mercury in the troposphere is poorly understood. We measured gaseous elemental mercury (GEM, reactive gaseous mercury (RGM and particulate mercury (HgP along with carbon monoxide (CO, ozone (O3, aerosols, and meteorological variables at Storm Peak Laboratory at an elevation of 3200 m a.s.l., in Colorado, from 28 April to 1 July 2008. The mean mercury concentrations were 1.6 ng m−3 (GEM, 20 pg m−3 (RGM and 9 pg m−3 (HgP. We observed eight events of strongly enhanced atmospheric RGM levels with maximum concentrations up to 137 pg m−3. RGM enhancement events lasted for long time periods of 2 to 6 days showing both enriched level during daytime and nighttime when other tracers (e.g., aerosols showed different representations of boundary layer air and free tropospheric air. During seven of these events, RGM was inversely correlated to GEM (RGM/GEM regression slope ~−0.1, but did not exhibit correlations with ozone, carbon monoxide, or aerosol concentrations. Relative humidity was the dominant factor affecting RGM levels with high RGM levels always present whenever relative humidity was below 40 to 50%. We conclude that RGM enhancements observed at Storm Peak Laboratory were not induced by pollution events and were related to oxidation of tropospheric GEM. High RGM levels were not limited to upper tropospheric or stratospherically influenced air masses, indicating that entrainment processes and deep vertical mixing of free tropospheric air enriched in RGM may lead to high RGM levels throughout the troposphere and into the boundary layer over the Western United States. Based on backtrajectory analysis and a lack of mass balance between RGM and GEM, atmospheric production of RGM may also have occurred in some distance allowing for scavenging and/or deposition of RGM prior to reaching the laboratory. Our

  1. High levels of reactive gaseous mercury observed at a high elevation research laboratory in the Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faïn, X.; Obrist, D.; Hallar, A. G.; McCubbin, I.; Rahn, T.

    2009-10-01

    The chemical cycling and spatiotemporal distribution of mercury in the troposphere is poorly understood. We measured gaseous elemental mercury (GEM), reactive gaseous mercury (RGM) and particulate mercury (HgP) along with carbon monoxide (CO), ozone (O3), aerosols, and meteorological variables at Storm Peak Laboratory at an elevation of 3200 m a.s.l., in Colorado, from 28 April to 1 July 2008. The mean mercury concentrations were 1.6 ng m-3 (GEM), 20 pg m-3 (RGM) and 9 pg m-3 (HgP). We observed eight events of strongly enhanced atmospheric RGM levels with maximum concentrations up to 137 pg m-3. RGM enhancement events lasted for long time periods of 2 to 6 days showing both enriched level during daytime and nighttime when other tracers (e.g., aerosols) showed different representations of boundary layer air and free tropospheric air. During seven of these events, RGM was inversely correlated to GEM (RGM/GEM regression slope ~-0.1), but did not exhibit correlations with ozone, carbon monoxide, or aerosol concentrations. Relative humidity was the dominant factor affecting RGM levels with high RGM levels always present whenever relative humidity was below 40 to 50%. We conclude that RGM enhancements observed at Storm Peak Laboratory were not induced by pollution events and were related to oxidation of tropospheric GEM. High RGM levels were not limited to upper tropospheric or stratospherically influenced air masses, indicating that entrainment processes and deep vertical mixing of free tropospheric air enriched in RGM may lead to high RGM levels throughout the troposphere and into the boundary layer over the Western United States. Based on backtrajectory analysis and a lack of mass balance between RGM and GEM, atmospheric production of RGM may also have occurred in some distance allowing for scavenging and/or deposition of RGM prior to reaching the laboratory. Our observations provide evidence that the tropospheric pool of mercury is frequently enriched in divalent

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-01

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

  3. Analysis of water supply and demand in high mountain cities of Bolivia under growing population and changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinouchi, T.; Mendoza, J.; Asaoka, Y.; Fuchs, P.

    2017-12-01

    Water resources in La Paz and El Alto, high mountain capital cities of Bolivia, strongly depend on the surface and subsurface runoff from partially glacierized catchments located in the Cordillera Real, Andes. Due to growing population and changing climate, the balance between water supply from the source catchments and demand for drinking, agriculture, industry and hydropower has become precarious in recent years as evidenced by a serious drought during the 2015-2016 El Nino event. To predict the long-term availability of water resources under changing climate, we developed a semi-distributed glacio-hydrological model that considers various runoff pathways from partially glacierized high-altitude catchments. Two GCM projections (MRI-AGCM and INGV-ECHAM4) were used for the prediction with bias corrected by reanalysis data (ERA-INTERIM) and downscaled to target areas using data monitored at several weather stations. The model was applied to three catchments from which current water resources are supplied and eight additional catchments that will be potentially effective in compensating reduced runoff from the current water resource areas. For predicting the future water demand, a cohort-component method was used for the projection of size and composition of population change, considering natural and social change (birth, death and transfer). As a result, total population is expected to increase from 1.6 million in 2012 to 2.0 million in 2036. The water demand was predicted for given unit water consumption, non-revenue water rate (NWR), and sectorial percentage of water consumption for domestic, industrial and commercial purposes. The results of hydrological simulations and the analysis of water demand indicated that water supply and demand are barely balanced in recent years, while the total runoff from current water resource areas will continue to decrease and unprecedented water shortage is likely to occur since around 2020 toward the middle of 21st century even

  4. [Study on morphology, quality and germination characteristics of Acanthopanax trifoliatus seeds under different habitats].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Juan

    2014-05-01

    To preliminary explore the difference of the morphological, quality and germinal characteristics of Acanthopanax trifoliatus seeds under different habitats. Collect the wild seeds from different habitats in West Mountain, and then observe their external appearances and internal structure, and test the thousand seeds weight,water content and seed vigor. What's more, the influence to germination rates of the seeds from different temperatures and light intensities in artificial bioclimatic chamber was studied. Orthogonal test in experimental plots was carried out to screen the different sowing dates, matrix types and soil depths which may influence germination rate. The external appearances and quality characteristics of wild seeds from three habitats were different. Seeds could germinate in the both light and dark, the germination rate of the habitat II was as high as 70.5% at the optimum temperature 20 degrees C in artificial bioclimatic chamber. The optimal combination A1, B1, C1 was screened out through orthogonal test, namely, the germination rate would be the highest when the seeds sowed in autumn covering with 2 cm depth of matrix type which component of the ratio of soil, sand and organic fertilizer was 6: 3: 1. There was significant difference in the morphology and germination rate of the three habitats seeds. The habitat II seeds were the optimal choice when culture seedling. The influences of different temperatures on germination rate were different, and the dried seeds should sow in current autumn, better than the next spring.

  5. Supplemental Performance Analyses for Igneous Activity and Human Intrusion at the Potential High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Swift, P.; Gaither, K.; Freeze, G.; McCord, J.; Kalinich, D.; Saulnier, G.; Statham, W.

    2002-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is considering the possible recommendation of a site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for the potential development of a geologic repository for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel. Consequences of hypothetical disruption of the Yucca Mountain site by igneous activity or human intrusion have been evaluated in the Yucca Mountain Science and Engineering Report (S and ER) (1), which presents technical information supporting the consideration of the possible site recommendation. Since completion of the S and ER, supplemental analyses have examined possible impacts of new information and alternative assumptions on the estimates of the consequences of these events. Specifically, analyses of the consequences of igneous disruption address uncertainty regarding: (1) the impacts of changes in the repository footprint and waste package spacing on the probability of disruption; (2) impacts of alternative assumptions about the appropriate distribution of future wind speeds to use in the analysis; (3) effects of alternative assumptions about waste particle sizes; and (4) alternative assumptions about the number of waste packages damaged by igneous intrusion; and (5) alternative assumptions about the exposure pathways and the biosphere dose conversion factors used in the analysis. Additional supplemental analyses, supporting the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), have examined the results for both igneous disruption and human intrusion, recalculated for a receptor group located 18 kilometers (km) from the repository (the location specified in 40 CFR 197), rather than at the 20 km distance used in the S and ER analyses

  6. Correction of Excessive Precipitation over Steep and High Mountains in a GCM: A Simple Method of Parameterizing the Thermal Effects of Subgrid Topographic Variation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chao, Winston C.

    2015-01-01

    The excessive precipitation over steep and high mountains (EPSM) in GCMs and meso-scale models is due to a lack of parameterization of the thermal effects of the subgrid-scale topographic variation. These thermal effects drive subgrid-scale heated slope induced vertical circulations (SHVC). SHVC provide a ventilation effect of removing heat from the boundary layer of resolvable-scale mountain slopes and depositing it higher up. The lack of SHVC parameterization is the cause of EPSM. The author has previously proposed a method of parameterizing SHVC, here termed SHVC.1. Although this has been successful in avoiding EPSM, the drawback of SHVC.1 is that it suppresses convective type precipitation in the regions where it is applied. In this article we propose a new method of parameterizing SHVC, here termed SHVC.2. In SHVC.2 the potential temperature and mixing ratio of the boundary layer are changed when used as input to the cumulus parameterization scheme over mountainous regions. This allows the cumulus parameterization to assume the additional function of SHVC parameterization. SHVC.2 has been tested in NASA Goddard's GEOS-5 GCM. It achieves the primary goal of avoiding EPSM while also avoiding the suppression of convective-type precipitation in regions where it is applied.

  7. Waste degradation and mobilization in performance assessments for the Yucca Mountain disposal system for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rechard, Rob P.; Stockman, Christine T.

    2014-01-01

    This paper summarizes modeling of waste degradation and mobilization in performance assessments (PAs) conducted between 1984 and 2008 to evaluate feasibility, viability, and assess compliance of a repository for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain in southern Nevada. As understanding of the Yucca Mountain disposal system increased, the waste degradation module, or succinctly called the source-term, evolved from initial assumptions in 1984 to results based on process modeling in 2008. In early PAs, waste degradation had significant influence on calculated behavior but as the robustness of the waste container was increased and modeling of the container degradation improved, waste degradation had much less influence in later PAs. The variation of dissolved concentrations of radionuclides progressed from simple probability distributions in early PAs to functions dependent upon water chemistry in later PAs. Also, transport modeling of radionuclides in the waste, container, and invert were added in 1995; and, colloid-facilitated transport of radionuclides was added in 1998. - Highlights: • Progression of modeling of waste degradation in performance assessments is discussed for the proposed repository at Yucca Mountain. • Progression of evaluating dissolved concentrations of radionuclides in the source-term is discussed. • Radionuclide transport modeling in the waste, container, and invert in 1995 and thereafter is discussed. • Colloid-facilitated transport in the waste, container, and invert in 1998 and thereafter is discussed

  8. Milestones for Selection, Characterization, and Analysis of the Performance of a Repository for Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste at Yucca Mountain.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rechard, Robert P.

    2014-02-01

    This report presents a concise history in tabular form of events leading up to site identification in 1978, site selection in 1987, subsequent characterization, and ongoing analysis through 2008 of the performance of a repository for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain in southern Nevada. The tabulated events generally occurred in five periods: (1) commitment to mined geologic disposal and identification of sites; (2) site selection and analysis, based on regional geologic characterization through literature and analogous data; (3) feasibility analysis demonstrating calculation procedures and importance of system components, based on rough measures of performance using surface exploration, waste process knowledge, and general laboratory experiments; (4) suitability analysis demonstrating viability of disposal system, based on environment-specific laboratory experiments, in-situ experiments, and underground disposal system characterization; and (5) compliance analysis, based on completed site-specific characterization. Because the relationship is important to understanding the evolution of the Yucca Mountain Project, the tabulation also shows the interaction between four broad categories of political bodies and government agencies/institutions: (a) technical milestones of the implementing institutions, (b) development of the regulatory requirements and related federal policy in laws and court decisions, (c) Presidential and agency directives and decisions, and (d) critiques of the Yucca Mountain Project and pertinent national and world events related to nuclear energy and radioactive waste.

  9. Calcifying invertebrates succeed in a naturally CO2-rich coastal habitat but are threatened by high levels of future acidification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Wahl

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available CO2 emissions are leading to an acidification of the oceans. Predicting marine community vulnerability towards acidification is difficult, as adaptation processes cannot be accounted for in most experimental studies. Naturally CO2 enriched sites thus can serve as valuable proxies for future changes in community structure. Here we describe a natural analogue site in the Western Baltic Sea. Seawater pCO2 in Kiel Fjord is elevated for large parts of the year due to upwelling of CO2 rich waters. Peak pCO2 values of >230 Pa (>2300 μatm and pHNBS values of pCO2 values are ~70 Pa (~700 μatm. In contrast to previously described naturally CO2 enriched sites that have suggested a progressive displacement of calcifying auto- and heterotrophic species, the macrobenthic community in Kiel Fjord is dominated by calcifying invertebrates. We show that blue mussels from Kiel Fjord can maintain control rates of somatic and shell growth at a pCO2 of 142 Pa (1400 μatm, pHNBS = 7.7. Juvenile mussel recruitment peaks during the summer months, when high water pCO2 values of ~100 Pa (~1000 μatm prevail. Our findings indicate that calcifying keystone species may be able to cope with surface ocean pHNBS values projected for the end of this century when food supply is sufficient. However, owing to non-linear synergistic effects of future acidification and upwelling of corrosive water, peak seawater pCO2 in Kiel Fjord and many other productive estuarine habitats could increase to values >400 Pa (>4000 μatm. These changes will most likely affect calcification and recruitment, and increase external shell dissolution.

  10. High-resolution coproecology: using coprolites to reconstruct the habits and habitats of New Zealand's extinct upland moa (Megalapteryx didinus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie R Wood

    Full Text Available Knowledge about the diet and ecology of extinct herbivores has important implications for understanding the evolution of plant defence structures, establishing the influences of herbivory on past plant community structure and composition, and identifying pollination and seed dispersal syndromes. The flightless ratite moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes were New Zealand's largest herbivores prior to their extinction soon after initial human settlement. Here we contribute to the knowledge of moa diet and ecology by reporting the results of a multidisciplinary study of 35 coprolites from a subalpine cave (Euphrates Cave on the South Island of New Zealand. Ancient DNA analysis and radiocarbon dating revealed the coprolites were deposited by the extinct upland moa (Megalapteryx didinus, and span from at least 6,368±31 until 694±30 (14C years BP; the approximate time of their extinction. Using pollen, plant macrofossil, and ancient DNA analyses, we identified at least 67 plant taxa from the coprolites, including the first evidence that moa fed on the nectar-rich flowers of New Zealand flax (Phormium and tree fuchsia (Fuchsia excorticata. The plant assemblage from the coprolites reflects a highly-generalist feeding ecology for upland moa, including browsing and grazing across the full range of locally available habitats (spanning southern beech (Nothofagus forest to tussock (Chionochloa grassland. Intact seeds in the coprolites indicate that upland moa may have been important dispersal agents for several plant taxa. Plant taxa with putative anti-browse adaptations were also identified in the coprolites. Clusters of coprolites (based on pollen assemblages, moa haplotypes, and radiocarbon dates, probably reflect specimens deposited at the same time by individual birds, and reveal the necessity of suitably large sample sizes in coprolite studies to overcome potential biases in diet interpretation.

  11. Ain't no mountain high enough? Setting high weight loss goals predict effort and short-term weight loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Vet, Emely; Nelissen, Rob M A; Zeelenberg, Marcel; De Ridder, Denise T D

    2013-05-01

    Although psychological theories outline that it might be beneficial to set more challenging goals, people attempting to lose weight are generally recommended to set modest weight loss goals. The present study explores whether the amount of weight loss individuals strive for is associated with more positive psychological and behavioral outcomes. Hereto, 447 overweight and obese participants trying to lose weight completed two questionnaires with a 2-month interval. Many participants set goals that could be considered unrealistically high. However, higher weight loss goals did not predict dissatisfaction but predicted more effort in the weight loss attempt, as well as more self-reported short-term weight loss when baseline commitment and motivation were controlled for.

  12. Milestones for Selection, Characterization, and Analysis of the Performance of a Repository for Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste at Yucca Mountain.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rechard, Robert P. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-02-01

    This report presents a concise history in tabular form of events leading up to site identification in 1978, site selection in 1987, subsequent characterization, and ongoing analysis through 2009 of the performance of a repository for spent nuclear fuel and high - level radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain in southern Nevada. The tabulated events generally occurred in five periods: (1) commitment to mined geologic disposal and identification of sites; (2) site selection and analysis, based on regional geologic characterization through literature and analogous data; (3) feasibility analysis demonstrating calculation procedures and importance of system components, based on rough measures of performance using surface exploration, waste process knowledge, and general laboratory experiments; (4) suitability analysis demonstrating viability of disposal system, based on environment - specific laboratory experiments, in - situ experiments, and underground disposal system characterization; and (5) compliance analysis, based on completed site - specific characterization . The current sixth period beyond 2010 represents a new effort to set waste management policy in the United States. Because the relationship is important to understanding the evolution of the Yucca Mountain Project , the tabulation also shows the interaction between the policy realm and technical realm using four broad categories of events : (a) Regulatory requirements and related federal policy in laws and court decisions, (c) Presidential and agency directives, (c) technical milestones of implementing institutions, and (d) critiques of the Yucca Mountain Project and pertinent national and world events related to nuclear energy and radioactive waste. Preface The historical progression of technical milestones for the Yucca Mountain Project was originally developed for 10 journal articles in a special issue of Reliability Engineering System Safety on the performance assessment for the Yucca Mountain license

  13. Joint use of multi-orbit high-resolution SAR interferometry for DEM generation in mountainous area

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Lu; Jiang, Houjun; Liao, Mingsheng; Balz, Timo; Wang, Teng

    2014-01-01

    SAR interferometry has long been regarded as an effective tool for wide-area topographic mapping in hilly and mountainous areas. However, quality of InSAR DEM product is usually affected by atmospheric disturbances and decorrelation-induced voids, especially for data acquired in repeat-pass mode. In this paper, we proposed an approach for improved topographic mapping by optimal fusion of multi-orbit InSAR DEMs with correction of atmospheric phase screen (APS). An experimental study with highresolution TerraSAR-X and COSMO-SkyMed datasets covering a mountainous area was carried out to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed approach. Validation with a reference DEM of scale 1:50,000 indicated that vertical accuracy of the fused DEM can be better than 5 m.

  14. Joint use of multi-orbit high-resolution SAR interferometry for DEM generation in mountainous area

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Lu

    2014-07-01

    SAR interferometry has long been regarded as an effective tool for wide-area topographic mapping in hilly and mountainous areas. However, quality of InSAR DEM product is usually affected by atmospheric disturbances and decorrelation-induced voids, especially for data acquired in repeat-pass mode. In this paper, we proposed an approach for improved topographic mapping by optimal fusion of multi-orbit InSAR DEMs with correction of atmospheric phase screen (APS). An experimental study with highresolution TerraSAR-X and COSMO-SkyMed datasets covering a mountainous area was carried out to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed approach. Validation with a reference DEM of scale 1:50,000 indicated that vertical accuracy of the fused DEM can be better than 5 m.

  15. Emissions of BVOC from lodgepole pine in response to mountain pine beetle attack in high and low mortality forest stands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. R. Duhl

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available In this screening study, biogenic volatile organic compound (BVOC emissions from intact branches of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta trees were measured from trees at two forested sites that have been impacted differently by the mountain pine beetle (MPB, with one having higher mortality and the other with lower mortality. Differences in the amounts and chemical diversity of BVOC between the two sites and from apparently healthy trees versus trees in different stages of MPB attack are presented, as well as (for one site observed seasonal variability in emissions. A brief comparison is made of geological and climatic characteristics as well as prior disturbances (both natural and man-made at each site. Trees sampled at the site experiencing high MPB-related tree mortality had lower chemodiversity in terms of monoterpene (MT emission profiles, while profiles were more diverse at the lower-mortality site. Also at the higher-mortality site, MPB-infested trees in various stages of decline had lower emissions of sesquiterpenes (SQTs compared to healthy trees, while at the site with lower mortality, MPB-survivors had significantly higher SQT emissions during part of the growing season when compared to both uninfested and newly infested trees. SQT profiles differed between the two sites and, like monoterpene and oxygenated VOC profiles, varied through the season. For the low-mortality site in which repeated measurements were made over the course of the early summer–late fall, higher chemical diversity was observed in early- compared to late-season measurements for all compound classes investigated (MT, oxygenated VOC, and SQT, with the amount of change appearing to correlate to the MPB status of the trees studied. Emissions of 2-methyl-3-buten-2-ol (MBO had a distinct seasonal signal but were not much different between healthy or infested trees, except in trees with dead needles, from which emissions of this compound were negligible, and in late

  16. Sediment Budget in the Taiwan Strait with High Fluvial Sediment Inputs from Mountainous Rivers: New Observations and Synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuh-Ji Kao

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The shallow Taiwan Strait at the southern opening of the East China Sea (ECS receives abundant sediments from turbid mountainous rivers in Taiwan. The volume of sediment is among the highest sediment yields on the global surface. This large amount of sediment discharged from modern Taiwan (range: 175 - 380 Mt y-1 based on 50-yr data is comparable to that discharged from Changjaing (500 Mt y-1-decreasing in recent decades, underscoring the importance of sediment budget in the Taiwan Strait and sediment flux from Taiwan into the ECS.We documented fluvial mud and sand concentrations during flash flooding with our observations indicating that fluvial materials in Taiwan¡¦s rivers are chiefly composed of mud (> 70 and up to 98 . By contrast, sand fraction dominates (> 85 for most stations surface sediments in the Taiwan Strait. Super typhoon Herb alone delivered 130 Mt of sediments from Choshui, the largest river in Taiwan, yet only insignificant amounts of mud were found at the river mouth six months later. The actions of waves, tides, and currents apparently prevent the deposition of fine grained sediments. Assuming sand occupied 30 (the maximum of the 60 Mt y-1 total sediment input from major western Taiwanese rivers, our annual budget estimate shows that the amount of sand input (18 5 Mt y-1 is comparable to the burial output of sand (12 10 Mt y-1. However, mud burial (6 5 Mt y-1 in the strait is far below the estimated mud input (42 11 Mt y-1, resulting in a significant shortfall. Hydrodynamic conditions were synthesized to explain the distribution pattern of limited mud patches in the strait and to reveal potential pathways by which fine-grain sediment transportation takes place in the seas surrounding Taiwan. A significant shortfall in the mud budget in the Taiwan Strait suggests that ~85 of the fluvial mud left the strait. Alternatively, the 50-year modern sediment flux data used in this study reflects exacerbated sediment flux due to human

  17. A Transportation Risk Assessment Tool for Analyzing the Transport of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste to the Proposed Yucca Mountain Repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Best, Ralph; Winnard, T.; Ross, S.; Best, R.

    2001-01-01

    The Yucca Mountain Transportation Database was developed as a data management tool for assembling and integrating data from multiple sources to compile the potential transportation impacts presented in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for a Geologic Repository for the Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste at Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada (DEIS). The database uses the results from existing models and codes such as RADTRAN, RISKIND, INTERLINE, and HIGHWAY to estimate transportation-related impacts of transporting spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste from commercial reactors and U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) facilities to Yucca Mountain. The source tables in the database are compendiums of information from many diverse sources including: radionuclide quantities for each waste type; route and route characteristics for rail, legal-weight truck, heavy haul. truck, and barge transport options; state-specific accident and fatality rates for routes selected for analysis; packaging and shipment data by waste type; unit risk factors; the complex behavior of the packaged waste forms in severe transport accidents; and the effects of exposure to radiation or the isotopic specific effects of radionclides should they be released in severe transportation accidents. The database works together with the codes RADTRAN (Neuhauser, et al, 1994) and RISKlND (Yuan, et al, 1995) to calculate incident-free dose and accident risk. For the incident-free transportation scenario, the database uses RADTRAN and RISKIND-generated data to calculate doses to offlink populations, onlink populations, people at stops, crews, inspectors, workers at intermodal transfer stations, guards at overnight stops, and escorts, as well as non-radioactive pollution health effects. For accident scenarios, the database uses RADTRAN-generated data to calculate dose risks based on ingestion, inhalation, resuspension, immersion (cloudshine), and groundshine as

  18. Influence of whitebark pine decline on fall habitat use and movements of grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costello, Cecily M; van Manen, Frank T; Haroldson, Mark A; Ebinger, Michael R; Cain, Steven L; Gunther, Kerry A; Bjornlie, Daniel D

    2014-05-01

    When abundant, seeds of the high-elevation whitebark pine (WBP; Pinus albicaulis) are an important fall food for grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Rates of bear mortality and bear/human conflicts have been inversely associated with WBP productivity. Recently, mountain pine beetles (Dendroctonus ponderosae) have killed many cone-producing WBP trees. We used fall (15 August-30 September) Global Positioning System locations from 89 bear years to investigate temporal changes in habitat use and movements during 2000-2011. We calculated Manly-Chesson (MC) indices for selectivity of WBP habitat and secure habitat (≥500 m from roads and human developments), determined dates of WBP use, and documented net daily movement distances and activity radii. To evaluate temporal trends, we used regression, model selection, and candidate model sets consisting of annual WBP production, sex, and year. One-third of sampled grizzly bears had fall ranges with little or no mapped WBP habitat. Most other bears (72%) had a MC index above 0.5, indicating selection for WBP habitats. From 2000 to 2011, mean MC index decreased and median date of WBP use shifted about 1 week later. We detected no trends in movement indices over time. Outside of national parks, there was no correlation between the MC indices for WBP habitat and secure habitat, and most bears (78%) selected for secure habitat. Nonetheless, mean MC index for secure habitat decreased over the study period during years of good WBP productivity. The wide diet breadth and foraging plasticity of grizzly bears likely allowed them to adjust to declining WBP. Bears reduced use of WBP stands without increasing movement rates, suggesting they obtained alternative fall foods within their local surroundings. However, the reduction in mortality risk historically associated with use of secure, high-elevation WBP habitat may be diminishing for bears residing in multiple-use areas.

  19. Influence of whitebark pine decline on fall habitat use and movements of grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costello, Cecily M.; van Manen, Frank T.; Haroldson, Mark A.; Ebinger, Michael R.; Cain, Steven L.; Gunther, Kerry A.; Bjornlie, Daniel D.

    2014-01-01

    When abundant, seeds of the high-elevation whitebark pine (WBP; Pinus albicaulis) are an important fall food for grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Rates of bear mortality and bear/human conflicts have been inversely associated with WBP productivity. Recently, mountain pine beetles (Dendroctonus ponderosae) have killed many cone-producing WBP trees. We used fall (15 August–30 September) Global Positioning System locations from 89 bear years to investigate temporal changes in habitat use and movements during 2000–2011. We calculated Manly–Chesson (MC) indices for selectivity of WBP habitat and secure habitat (≥500 m from roads and human developments), determined dates of WBP use, and documented net daily movement distances and activity radii. To evaluate temporal trends, we used regression, model selection, and candidate model sets consisting of annual WBP production, sex, and year. One-third of sampled grizzly bears had fall ranges with little or no mapped WBP habitat. Most other bears (72%) had a MC index above 0.5, indicating selection for WBP habitats. From 2000 to 2011, mean MC index decreased and median date of WBP use shifted about 1 week later. We detected no trends in movement indices over time. Outside of national parks, there was no correlation between the MC indices for WBP habitat and secure habitat, and most bears (78%) selected for secure habitat. Nonetheless, mean MC index for secure habitat decreased over the study period during years of good WBP productivity. The wide diet breadth and foraging plasticity of grizzly bears likely allowed them to adjust to declining WBP. Bears reduced use of WBP stands without increasing movement rates, suggesting they obtained alternative fall foods within their local surroundings. However, the reduction in mortality risk historically associated with use of secure, high-elevation WBP habitat may be diminishing for bears residing in multiple-use areas.

  20. Multi–criteria evaluation and simulated annealing for delimiting high priority habitats of Alectoris chukar and Phasianus colchicus in Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Momeni Dehaghi, I.

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Habitat degradation and hunting are among the most important causes of population decline for Alectoris chukar and Phasianus colchicus, two of the most threatened game species in the Golestan Province of Iran. Limited data on distribution and location of high–quality habitats for the two species make conservation efforts more difficult in the province. We used multi–criteria evaluation (MCE as a coarse–filter approach to refine the general distribution areas into habitat suitability maps for the species. We then used these maps as input to simulated annealing as a heuristic algorithm through Marxan in order to prioritize areas for conservation of the two species. To find the optimal solution, we tested various boundary length modifier (BLM values in the simulated annealing process. Our results showed that the MCE approach was useful to refine general habitat maps. Assessment of the selected reserves confirmed the suitability of the selected areas (mainly neighboring the current reserves making their management easier and more feasible. The total area of the selected reserves was about 476 km2. As current reserves of the Golestan Province represent only 23 % of the optimal area, further protected areas should be considered to efficiently conserve these two species.

  1. Utility of high-altitude infrared spectral data in mineral exploration: Application to Northern Patagonia Mountains, Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, B.R.; King, T.V.V.; Morath, L.C.; Phillips, J.D.

    2003-01-01

    Synoptic views of hydrothermal alteration assemblages are of considerable utility in regional-scale minerals exploration. Recent advances in data acquisition and analysis technologies have greatly enhanced the usefulness of remotely sensed imaging spectroscopy for reliable alteration mineral assemblages mapping. Using NASA's Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) sensor, this study mapped large areas of advanced argillic and phyllic-argillic alteration assemblages in the southeastern Santa Rita and northern Patagonia mountains, Arizona. Two concealed porphyry copper deposits have been identified during past exploration, the Red Mountain and Sunnyside deposits, and related published hydrothermal alteration zoning studies allow the comparison of the results obtained from AVIRIS data to the more traditional field mapping approaches. The AVIRIS mapping compares favorably with field-based studies. An analysis of iron-bearing oxide minerals above a concealed supergene chalcocite deposit at Red Mountain also indicates that remotely sensed data can be of value in the interpretation of leached caps above porphyry copper deposits. In conjunction with other types of geophysical data, AVIRIS mineral maps can be used to discriminate different exploration targets within a region.

  2. Yucca Mountain Project public interactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reilly, B.E.

    1990-01-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is committed to keeping the citizens of Nevada informed about activities that relate to the high-level nuclear waste repository program. This paper presents an overview of the Yucca Mountain Project's public interaction philosophy, objectives, activities and experiences during the two years since Congress directed the DOE to conduct site characterization activities only for the Yucca Mountain site

  3. DOE's Yucca Mountain studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-12-01

    This booklet is about the disposal of high-level nuclear waste in the United States. It is for readers who have a general rather than a technical background. It discusses why scientists and engineers thinkhigh-level nuclear waste may be disposed of safely underground. It also describes why Yucca Mountain, Nevada, is being studied as a potential repository site and provides basic information about those studies

  4. Yucca Mountain Milestone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hunt, Rod

    1997-01-01

    The Department of Energy project to determine if the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada is suitable for geologic disposal of high-level nuclear waste reached a major milestone in late April when a 25-foot-diameter tunnel boring machine ''holed through'' completing a five-mile-long, horseshoe-shaped excavation through the mountain. When the cutting-head of the giant machine broke through to daylight at the tunnel's south portal, it ended a 2 1/2-year excavation through the mountain that was completed ahead of schedule and with an outstanding safety record. Video of the event was transmitted live by satellite to Washington, DC, where it was watched by Secretary of Energy Frederico Pena and other high-level DOE officials, signifying the importance of the project's mission to find a repository for high-level nuclear waste and spent nuclear fuel produced by nuclear power plants. This critical undertaking is being performed by DOE's Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management (OCRWM). The tunnel is the major feature of the Exploratory Studies Facility (ESF), which serves as an underground laboratory for engineers and scientists to help determine if Yucca Mountain is suitable to serve as a repository for the safe disposal of high-level nuclear waste. Morrison Knudsen's Environmental/Government Group is providing design and construction-management services on the project. The MK team is performing final design for the ESF and viability assessment design for the underground waste repository that will be built only if the site is found suitable for such a mission. In fact, if at anytime during the ESF phase, the site is found unsuitable, the studies will be stopped and the site restored to its natural state

  5. Simulating high spatial resolution high severity burned area in Sierra Nevada forests for California Spotted Owl habitat climate change risk assessment and management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keyser, A.; Westerling, A. L.; Jones, G.; Peery, M. Z.

    2017-12-01

    Sierra Nevada forests have experienced an increase in very large fires with significant areas of high burn severity, such as the Rim (2013) and King (2014) fires, that have impacted habitat of endangered species such as the California spotted owl. In order to support land manager forest management planning and risk assessment activities, we used historical wildfire histories from the Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity project and gridded hydroclimate and land surface characteristics data to develope statistical models to simulate the frequency, location and extent of high severity burned area in Sierra Nevada forest wildfires as functions of climate and land surface characteristics. We define high severity here as BA90 area: the area comprising patches with ninety percent or more basal area killed within a larger fire. We developed a system of statistical models to characterize the probability of large fire occurrence, the probability of significant BA90 area present given a large fire, and the total extent of BA90 area in a fire on a 1/16 degree lat/lon grid over the Sierra Nevada. Repeated draws from binomial and generalized pareto distributions using these probabilities generated a library of simulated histories of high severity fire for a range of near (50 yr) future climate and fuels management scenarios. Fuels management scenarios were provided by USFS Region 5. Simulated BA90 area was then downscaled to 30 m resolution using a statistical model we developed using Random Forest techniques to estimate the probability of adjacent 30m pixels burning with ninety percent basal kill as a function of fire size and vegetation and topographic features. The result is a library of simulated high resolution maps of BA90 burned areas for a range of climate and fuels management scenarios with which we estimated conditional probabilities of owl nesting sites being impacted by high severity wildfire.

  6. Collaborative Project. 3D Radiative Transfer Parameterization Over Mountains/Snow for High-Resolution Climate Models. Fast physics and Applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liou, Kuo-Nan [Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States)

    2016-02-09

    Under the support of the aforementioned DOE Grant, we have made two fundamental contributions to atmospheric and climate sciences: (1) Develop an efficient 3-D radiative transfer parameterization for application to intense and intricate inhomogeneous mountain/snow regions. (2) Innovate a stochastic parameterization for light absorption by internally mixed black carbon and dust particles in snow grains for understanding and physical insight into snow albedo reduction in climate models. With reference to item (1), we divided solar fluxes reaching mountain surfaces into five components: direct and diffuse fluxes, direct- and diffuse-reflected fluxes, and coupled mountain-mountain flux. “Exact” 3D Monte Carlo photon tracing computations can then be performed for these solar flux components to compare with those calculated from the conventional plane-parallel (PP) radiative transfer program readily available in climate models. Subsequently, Parameterizations of the deviations of 3D from PP results for five flux components are carried out by means of the multiple linear regression analysis associated with topographic information, including elevation, solar incident angle, sky view factor, and terrain configuration factor. We derived five regression equations with high statistical correlations for flux deviations and successfully incorporated this efficient parameterization into WRF model, which was used as the testbed in connection with the Fu-Liou-Gu PP radiation scheme that has been included in the WRF physics package. Incorporating this 3D parameterization program, we conducted simulations of WRF and CCSM4 to understand and evaluate the mountain/snow effect on snow albedo reduction during seasonal transition and the interannual variability for snowmelt, cloud cover, and precipitation over the Western United States presented in the final report. With reference to item (2), we developed in our previous research a geometric-optics surface-wave approach (GOS) for the

  7. Greater sage-grouse nest predators in the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockyer, Zachary B.; Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter sage-grouse, populations have declined across their range due to the loss, degradation, and fragmentation of habitat. Habitat alterations can lead not only to vegetative changes but also to shifts in animal behavior and predator composition that may influence population vital rates, such as nest success. For example, common ravens Corvus corax are sage-grouse nest predators, and common raven abundance is positively associated with human-caused habitat alterations. Because nest success is a central component to sage-grouse population persistence, research that identifies factors influencing nest success will better inform conservation efforts. We used videography to unequivocally identify sage-grouse nest predators within the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada, USA, from 2009 to 2011 and used maximum likelihood to calculate daily probability of nest survival. In the Virginia Mountains, fires, energy exploration, and other anthropogenic activities have altered historic sage-grouse habitat. We monitored 71 sage-grouse nests during the study, placing video cameras at 39 nests. Cumulative nest survival for all nests was 22.4% (95% CI, 13.0–33.4%), a survival rate that was significantly lower than other published results for sage-grouse in the Great Basin. Depredation was the primary cause for nest failure in our study (82.5%), and common ravens were the most frequent sage-grouse nest predator, accounting for 46.7% of nest depredations. We also successfully documented a suite of mammalian and reptilian species depredating sage-grouse nests, including some predators never previously confirmed in the literature to be sage-grouse nest predators (i.e., bobcats Lynx rufus and long-tailed weasels Mephitis frenata). Within the high elevation, disturbed habitat of the Virginia Mountains, low sage-grouse nest success may be limiting sage-grouse population growth. These results suggest that management actions that

  8. Toughness of the Virunga mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) diet across an altitudinal gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glowacka, Halszka; McFarlin, Shannon C; Vogel, Erin R; Stoinski, Tara S; Ndagijimana, Felix; Tuyisingize, Deo; Mudakikwa, Antoine; Schwartz, Gary T

    2017-08-01

    The robust masticatory system of mountain gorillas is thought to have evolved for the comminution of tough vegetation, yet, compared to other primates, the toughness of the mountain gorilla diet is unremarkable. This may be a result of low plant toughness in the mountain gorilla environment or of mountain gorillas feeding selectively on low-toughness foods. The goal of this paper is to determine how the toughness of the mountain gorilla diet varies across their habitat, which spans a large altitudinal range, and whether there is a relationship between toughness and food selection by mountain gorillas. We collected data on the following variables to determine whether, and if so how, they change with altitude: leaf toughness of two plant species consumed by mountain gorillas, at every 100 m increase in altitude (2,600-3,700 m); toughness of consumed foods comprising over 85% of the gorilla diet across five vegetation zones; and toughness of unconsumed/infrequently consumed plant parts of those foods. Although leaf toughness increased with altitude, the toughness of the gorilla diet remained similar. There was a negative relationship between toughness and consumption frequency, and toughness was a better predictor of consumption frequency than plant frequency, biomass, and density. Consumed plant parts were less tough than unconsumed/infrequently consumed parts and toughness of the latter increased with altitude. Although it is unclear whether gorillas select food based on toughness or use toughness as a sensory cue to impart other plant properties (e.g., macronutrients, chemicals), our results that gorillas maintain a consistent low-toughness dietary profile across altitude, despite toughness increasing with altitude, suggest that the robust gorilla masticatory apparatus evolved for repetitive mastication of foods that are not high in toughness. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Evaluating a Local Ensemble Transform Kalman Filter snow cover data assimilation method to estimate SWE within a high-resolution hydrologic modeling framework across Western US mountainous regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oaida, C. M.; Andreadis, K.; Reager, J. T., II; Famiglietti, J. S.; Levoe, S.

    2017-12-01

    Accurately estimating how much snow water equivalent (SWE) is stored in mountainous regions characterized by complex terrain and snowmelt-driven hydrologic cycles is not only greatly desirable, but also a big challenge. Mountain snowpack exhibits high spatial variability across a broad range of spatial and temporal scales due to a multitude of physical and climatic factors, making it difficult to observe or estimate in its entirety. Combing remotely sensed data and high resolution hydrologic modeling through data assimilation (DA) has the potential to provide a spatially and temporally continuous SWE dataset at horizontal scales that capture sub-grid snow spatial variability and are also relevant to stakeholders such as water resource managers. Here, we present the evaluation of a new snow DA approach that uses a Local Ensemble Transform Kalman Filter (LETKF) in tandem with the Variable Infiltration Capacity macro-scale hydrologic model across the Western United States, at a daily temporal resolution, and a horizontal resolution of 1.75 km x 1.75 km. The LETKF is chosen for its relative simplicity, ease of implementation, and computational efficiency and scalability. The modeling/DA system assimilates daily MODIS Snow Covered Area and Grain Size (MODSCAG) fractional snow cover over, and has been developed to efficiently calculate SWE estimates over extended periods of time and covering large regional-scale areas at relatively high spatial resolution, ultimately producing a snow reanalysis-type dataset. Here we focus on the assessment of SWE produced by the DA scheme over several basins in California's Sierra Nevada Mountain range where Airborne Snow Observatory data is available, during the last five water years (2013-2017), which include both one of the driest and one of the wettest years. Comparison against such a spatially distributed SWE observational product provides a greater understanding of the model's ability to estimate SWE and SWE spatial variability

  10. Very high geothermal gradient in near surface of the Whataroa Valley adjacent to the Alpine Fault: topographic driving forces and permeable mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upton, P.; Sutherland, R.; Townend, J.; Coussens, J.; Capova, L.

    2015-12-01

    The first phase of the Deep Fault Drilling Project (DFDP-1B) yielded a geothermal gradient of 62.6 ± 2.1 °C/km from a depth of 126 m where it intersected the Alpine Fault principal slip surface beneath Gaunt Creek (Sutherland et al. 2012). Ambient fluid pressures in DFDP-2B at Whataroa River were 8-10% above hydrostatic and a geothermal gradient of >130°C/km was determined, the geothermal gradient being considerably higher than we had predicted previously. 3D coupled thermal/fluid flow models have been generated of the Whataroa Valley and the DFDP-2 drill site. Modelling confirms that the following features, present in the Whataroa Valley, are a requirement for a geothermal gradient of >130°C/km at a depth of 1km beneath the valley; high topography, permeability on the order of 10-15 m2 in both the mountains and beneath the valleys to depths of > 1km below the valley floor, and abundant fluid. The high permeability and large topographic driving force leads to abundant meteoric water flowing downward through the mountains, hitting the permeability barrier of the Alpine Fault and being pushed upward into the valleys. The high geothermal gradient of the DFDP-2B borehole implies that the valleys also have a very high permeability which is likely a result of rock damage along the Alpine Fault.

  11. The effects of poaching and habitat structure on anti-predator behavioral strategies: A guanaco population in a high cold desert as case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappa, Flavio; Campos, Valeria; Giannoni, Stella; Andino, Natalia

    2017-01-01

    The effects of poaching on wildlife have been widely studied in conservation biology and can be heterogeneous, particularly on ungulates. These effects can be estimated through different methodologies whose use depends on several conditions such as Flight-initiation distance (FID). Our objectives were: 1- to evaluate whether poaching affects the FID and group structure of a guanaco (Lama guanicoe) population in a high cold desert in San Juan (Argentina); 2- to assess whether habitat structure (slope and vegetation cover) influences FID and group structure in this population. The study area included a site with poaching (unprotected area), and a site without poaching (protected area). We recorded 100 groups of guanacos: 70 in the protected and 30 in the unprotected area. FID and group size were greater in the unprotected than in the protected area, whereas proportions of group categories (with offspring, without offspring and solitary) were similar between areas. Besides, in relation to habitat structure, FID increased when vegetation cover decreased. On the other hand, FID and group size were not affected by slope. Our study shows that guanacos respond to poaching pressure as do other ungulate species, and that other factors such as vegetation cover also affect this behavior. Managers should be aware when interpreting FID due to its relation to habitat structure; the guanaco appears to assume greater risk (lower FID) in areas with high vegetation cover.

  12. Assessment and management of debris-flow risk in a tropical high-mountain catchment in Santa Teresa, Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Holger; Buis, Daniel; Huggel, Christian; Bühler, Yves; Choquevilca, Walter; Fernandez, Felipe; García, Javier; Giráldez, Claudia; Loarte, Edwin; Masias, Paul; Portocarreo, César; Price, Karen; Walser, Marco

    2015-04-01

    movements and temporal damming of the river with trigger cables, geophones, and water level measurements. Independent energy supply, real-time data transfer to the data center in the municipality of Santa Teresa and remote access to the system via internet allows constant monitoring from within and outside the catchment. On a later stage the system is open to be enhanced by adding further sensors, cameras, meteorological stations, monitoring stations at glacier lakes, and related communication infrastructure. Risk management in such a context is a complex task: on one hand the data and information scarcity as well as the environmental conditions challenge scientific and technical aspects of debris-flow modeling and the design of the EWS. On the other hand, social aspects must be taken into account to make actions coherent with local risk perceptions and to achieve a good preparedness of the population. For a successful realization of the EWS and the entire risk management scheme, the local and regional institutional framework must also be considered. This contribution thus illustrates the implementation of an integrated risk management strategy under the challenging conditions common for remote high-mountain regions.

  13. Generating local scale land use/cover change scenarios: case studies of high-risk mountain areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malek, Žiga; Glade, Thomas; Boerboom, Luc

    2014-05-01

    The relationship between land use/cover changes and consequences to human well-being is well acknowledged and has led to higher interest of both researchers and decision makers in driving forces and consequences of such changes. For example, removal of natural vegetation cover or urban expansion resulting in new elements at risk can increase hydro-meteorological risk. This is why it is necessary to study how the land use/cover could evolve in the future. Emphasis should especially be given to areas experiencing, or expecting, high rates of socio-economic change. A suitable approach to address these changes is scenario development; it offers exploring possible futures and the corresponding environmental consequences, and aids decision-making, as it enables to analyse possible options. Scenarios provide a creative methodology to depict possible futures, resulting from existing decisions, based on different assumptions of future socio-economic development. They have been used in various disciplines and on various scales, such as flood risk and soil erosion. Several studies have simulated future scenarios of land use/cover changes at a very high success rate, however usually these approaches are tailor made for specific case study areas and fit to available data. This study presents a multi-step scenario generation framework, which can be transferable to other local scale case study areas, taking into account the case study specific consequences of land use/cover changes. Through the use of experts' and decision-makers' knowledge, we aimed to develop a framework with the following characteristics: (1) it enables development of scenarios that are plausible, (2) it can overcome data inaccessibility, (3) it can address intangible and external driving forces of land use/cover change, and (4) it ensures transferability to other local scale case study areas with different land use/cover change processes and consequences. To achieve this, a set of different methods is applied

  14. Selection of candidate container materials for the conceptual waste package design for a potential high level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Konynenburg, R.A.; Halsey, W.G.; McCright, R.D.; Clarke, W.L. Jr. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (United States); Gdowski, G.E. [KMI, Inc., Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    1993-02-01

    Preliminary selection criteria have been developed, peer-reviewed, and applied to a field of 41 candidate materials to choose three alloys for further consideration during the advanced conceptual design phase of waste package development for a potential high level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. These three alloys are titanium grade 12, Alloy C-4, and Alloy 825. These selections are specific to the particular conceptual design outlined in the Site Characterization Plan. Other design concepts that may be considered in the advanced conceptual design phase may favor other materials choices.

  15. Selection of candidate container materials for the conceptual waste package design for a potential high level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Konynenburg, R.A.; Halsey, W.G.; McCright, R.D.; Clarke, W.L. Jr.; Gdowski, G.E.

    1993-02-01

    Preliminary selection criteria have been developed, peer-reviewed, and applied to a field of 41 candidate materials to choose three alloys for further consideration during the advanced conceptual design phase of waste package development for a potential high level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. These three alloys are titanium grade 12, Alloy C-4, and Alloy 825. These selections are specific to the particular conceptual design outlined in the Site Characterization Plan. Other design concepts that may be considered in the advanced conceptual design phase may favor other materials choices

  16. ACUTE MOUNTAIN SICKNESS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jakub Krzeszowiak

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the most likely pathophysiological causes of the development of acute mountain sickness (AMS, also known as altitude sickness, its pulmonary form i.e. high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE, and high altitude cerebral edema (HACE. These diseases constitute extraordinary environmental hazards because they are directly connected with low atmospheric pressure, and thus low partial oxygen pressure. The above adverse atmospheric conditions start to affect humans already at an altitude of 2,500 meters above the sea level and, coupled with extreme physical exertion, can quickly lead to respiratory alkalosis, which is not present under any other conditions in the lowlands. Mountaineering above 4,500 m a.s.l. leads to hypoxia of internal organs and, primarily, reduced renal perfusion with all its consequences. The above adverse changes, combined with inadequate acclimatization, can lead to a situation of imminent danger to life and health. This paper describes in detail the consequences of acute mountain sickness, which can ultimately lead to the development of AMS and one of severe forms of HACE and/or HAPE.

  17. Creation of the NUR mountain-level installation aimed at registration of super-high-energy showers in cosmic rays

    CERN Document Server

    Chubenko, A P; Martyanov, I S; Sadykov, K; Zastrozhnova, N N

    2002-01-01

    Description of the NUR installation aimed at registration of extensive air showers (EAS) is presented. The installation is sited near Almaty at a height of 3340 m above sea level at the Jusaly Kezen pass to the Tien Shan foothills. The distinctive characteristic of the installation from other similar existing ones is its location at a mountain slope under a 30 deg. angle relative to the horizon. Due to this orientation, the accuracy of measurement of EAS incidence angles exceeding 40 deg. increases significantly.

  18. High diversity and endemism in the genus Cautires Waterhouse, 1879 (Coleoptera: Lycidae from the Malay mountain forests, with the descriptions of fourteen new species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice Jiruskova

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available We identified a high diversity in the net-winged beetles of the genus Cautires in Peninsular Malaysia. Fourteen new species are described: Cautires alexae sp. nov., C. andujari sp. nov., C. arribasae sp. nov., C. berembanensis sp. nov., C. campestris sp. nov., C. communis sp. nov., C. jasarensis sp. nov., C. katarinae sp. nov., C. kirstenae sp. nov., C. kotatinggensis sp. nov., C. linardi sp. nov., C. maseki sp. nov., C. pahangensis sp. nov. and C. renatae sp. nov. Seven previously described species are discussed, illustrated and differential diagnoses provided; all species are keyed. The Cautires species differ in a limited number of diagnostic characters, namely in the shape of male antennae, the relative size of eyes and in the shape of the male genitalia. The females are difficult to assign to a conspecific male due to high intraspecific variability. The characteristically low dispersal propensity of net-winged beetles lead to the evolution of the unique fauna in the Malay mountains and despite an extensive study of the type material we recorded only a single species of Cautires occurring simultaneously in Sumatra. We suggest that the Malay mountain fauna is highly endemic and evolved in situ.

  19. Age dependence of the accumulation of organochlorine pollutants in brown trout (Salmo trutta) from a remote high mountain lake (Redo, Pyrenees)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vives, I.; Grimalt, J.O.; Ventura, M.; Catalan, J.; Rosseland, B.O.

    2005-01-01

    Polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs), hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and DDT were examined in the muscle of brown trout (Salmo trutta) from a high mountain lake located in the Pyrenees (Catalonia, Spain) that was used as a model of these lacustrine environments. Results indicate that fish age is the main factor of variability among specimens in this population that is subjected to atmospheric inputs of the organochlorine compounds (OC). Increases of 2- and 20-fold between fish aged 1 year and 15 years old are found. The observed pattern cannot be explained in terms of fish size, condition factor, or muscle lipid content. Higher molecular weight compounds (higher lipophilicity) are better correlated with fish age than low molecular weight compounds. A transformation from 4,4'-DDT to 4,4'-DDE occurs in fish after ingestion; this results in amplified age-dependent signals, especially in male specimens. In contrast, PCB congener no. 180 has lower age dependence than the general OC group, which could be due to its high hydrophobicity (log K ow > 7). In any case, selective accumulation of hydrophobic compounds is already observed among younger fish (age, 1 year). Due to this effect, the relative OC composition does not reflect the main OC pollutants in the lake waters. - Trout in high mountain lakes display age-dependent accumulation of certain organochlorine pollutants

  20. Age dependence of the accumulation of organochlorine pollutants in brown trout (Salmo trutta) from a remote high mountain lake (Redo, Pyrenees)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vives, I. [Department of Environmental Chemistry, Institute of Chemical and Environmental Research (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034-Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Grimalt, J.O. [Department of Environmental Chemistry, Institute of Chemical and Environmental Research (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034-Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain)]. E-mail: jgoqam@cid.csic.es; Ventura, M. [Limnology Group (CSIC-UB), Centre for Advanced Studies of Blanes (CEAB-CSIC), Acces Cala St. Francesc, 14, Blanes 17300, Catalonia (Spain); Catalan, J. [Limnology Group (CSIC-UB), Centre for Advanced Studies of Blanes (CEAB-CSIC), Acces Cala St. Francesc, 14, Blanes 17300, Catalonia (Spain); Rosseland, B.O. [Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA), P.O.B. 173 Kjelsaas, N-0411 Oslo (Norway); Institute for Biology and Nature Conservation, The Agricultural University of Norway (NLH) (Norway)

    2005-01-01

    Polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs), hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and DDT were examined in the muscle of brown trout (Salmo trutta) from a high mountain lake located in the Pyrenees (Catalonia, Spain) that was used as a model of these lacustrine environments. Results indicate that fish age is the main factor of variability among specimens in this population that is subjected to atmospheric inputs of the organochlorine compounds (OC). Increases of 2- and 20-fold between fish aged 1 year and 15 years old are found. The observed pattern cannot be explained in terms of fish size, condition factor, or muscle lipid content. Higher molecular weight compounds (higher lipophilicity) are better correlated with fish age than low molecular weight compounds. A transformation from 4,4'-DDT to 4,4'-DDE occurs in fish after ingestion; this results in amplified age-dependent signals, especially in male specimens. In contrast, PCB congener no. 180 has lower age dependence than the general OC group, which could be due to its high hydrophobicity (log K{sub ow} > 7). In any case, selective accumulation of hydrophobic compounds is already observed among younger fish (age, 1 year). Due to this effect, the relative OC composition does not reflect the main OC pollutants in the lake waters. - Trout in high mountain lakes display age-dependent accumulation of certain organochlorine pollutants.

  1. Microallopatry caused strong diversification in Buthus scorpions (Scorpiones: Buthidae in the Atlas Mountains (NW Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan C Habel

    Full Text Available The immense biodiversity of the Atlas Mountains in North Africa might be the result of high rates of microallopatry caused by mountain barriers surpassing 4000 meters leading to patchy habitat distributions. We test the influence of geographic structures on the phylogenetic patterns among Buthus scorpions using mtDNA sequences. We sampled 91 individuals of the genus Buthus from 51 locations scattered around the Atlas Mountains (Antiatlas, High Atlas, Middle Atlas and Jebel Sahro. We sequenced 452 bp of the Cytochrome Oxidase I gene which proved to be highly variable within and among Buthus species. Our phylogenetic analysis yielded 12 distinct genetic groups one of which comprised three subgroups mostly in accordance with the orographic structure of the mountain systems. Main clades overlap with each other, while subclades are distributed parapatrically. Geographic structures likely acted as long-term barriers among populations causing restriction of gene flow and allowing for strong genetic differentiation. Thus, genetic structure and geographical distribution of genetic (subclusters follow the classical theory of allopatric differentiation where distinct groups evolve without range overlap until reproductive isolation and ecological differentiation has built up. Philopatry and low dispersal ability of Buthus scorpions are the likely causes for the observed strong genetic differentiation at this small geographic scale.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-01

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

  3. Risk assessment for the Yucca Mountain high-level nuclear waste repository site: Estimation of volcanic disruption. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ho, Chih-Hsiang.

    1992-01-01

    In this article, we model the volcanism near the proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, U.S.A. by estimating the instantaneous recurrence rate using a nonhomogeneous Poisson process with Weibull intensity and by using a homogeneous Poisson process to predict future eruptions. We then quantify the probability that any single eruption is disruptive in terms of a (prior) probability distribution, since not every eruption would result in disruption of the repository. Bayesian analysis is performed to evaluate the volcanic risk. Based on the Quaternary data, a 90% confidence interval for the instantaneous recurrence rate near the Yucca Mountain site is (1.85 x 10 -6 /yr, 1.26 x 10 -5 /yr). Also, using these confidence bounds, the corresponding 90% confidence interval for the risk (probability of at least one disruptive eruption) for an isolation time of 10 4 years is (1.0 x 10 -3 , 6.7 x 10 -3 ), if it is assumed that the intensity remains constant during the projected time frame

  4. Flying Fast and High: Operational Flight Planning for Maximum Data Return for Airborne Snow Observatory Mountain Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berisford, D. F.; Painter, T. H.; Richardson, M.; Wallach, A.; Deems, J. S.; Bormann, K. J.

    2017-12-01

    The Airborne Snow Observatory (ASO - http://aso.jpl.nasa.gov) uses an airborne laser scanner to map snow depth, and imaging spectroscopy to map snow albedo in order to estimate snow water equivalent and melt rate over mountainous, hydrologic basin-scale areas. Optimization of planned flight lines requires the balancing of many competing factors, including flying altitude and speed, bank angle limitation, laser pulse rate and power level, flightline orientation relative to terrain, surface optical properties, and data output requirements. These variables generally distill down to cost vs. higher resolution data. The large terrain elevation variation encountered in mountainous terrain introduces the challenge of narrow swath widths over the ridgetops, which drive tight flightline spacing and possible dropouts over the valleys due to maximum laser range. Many of the basins flown by ASO exceed 3,000m of elevation relief, exacerbating this problem. Additionally, sun angle may drive flightline orientations for higher-quality spectrometer data, which may change depending on time of day. Here we present data from several ASO missions, both operational and experimental, showing the lidar performance and accuracy limitations for a variety of operating parameters. We also discuss flightline planning strategies to maximize data density return per dollar, and a brief analysis on the effect of short turn times/steep bank angles on GPS position accuracy.

  5. Extremely High Prevalence of Metronidazole-Resistant Helicobacter pylori Strains in Mountain People (Karen and Hmong) in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilaichone, Ratha-korn; Ratanachu-Ek, Thawee; Gamnarai, Pornpen; Chaithongrat, Supakarn; Uchida, Tomahisa; Yamaoka, Yoshio; Mahachai, Varocha

    2016-04-01

    This study aimed to survey the prevalence, patterns of antibiotic resistance, and clinical factors associated with antibiotic resistance in Helicobacter pylori among the Karen and Hmong mountain people of Thailand. We recruited dyspeptic patients in the Maesod district, Tak Province, Thailand. All subjects underwent upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, and three antral gastric biopsies were obtained for rapid urease tests and culture. An epsilometer was used to determine the minimum inhibitory concentrations of amoxicillin (AMX), clarithromycin (CLR), metronidazole (MNZ), levofloxacin (LVX), ciprofloxacin (CIP), and tetracycline (TET). A total of 291 subjects were enrolled; 149 (51.2%) were infected with H. pylori. Helicobacter pylori infection was present in 47.1% of Thai, 51.7% of Karen, and 58.7% of Hmong subjects. Antibiotic resistance was present in 75.8% including AMX (0.8%), TET (0%), CLR (5.6%), MNZ (71.8%), CIP (19.4%), LVX (19.4%), and multidrug resistance in 21.8%. Karen subjects had the highest prevalence of MNZ resistance (84.6%), and Hmong subjects had the highest prevalence of fluoroquinolone (27.3%) and multidrug (34.1%) resistance. MNZ plus fluoroquinolone (14.5%) was the most common multidrug resistance. There was no association between clinical factors and antibiotic resistance. MNZ resistance was prevalent, whereas fluoroquinolone- and multidrug-resistant H. pylori infections are important problems in mountain people of Thailand. © The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  6. Identifying temporal bottlenecks for the conservation of large-bodied fishes: Lake Sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens show highly restricted movement and habitat use over-winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donnette Thayer

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between species’ size and home range size has been well studied. In practice, home range may provide a good surrogate of broad spatial coverage needed for species conservation, however, many species can show restricted movement during critical life stages, such as breeding and over-wintering. This suggests the existence of either a behavioral or habitat mediated ‘temporal bottleneck,’ where restricted or sedentary movement can make populations more susceptible to harm during specific life stages. Here, we study over-winter movement and habitat use of Lake Sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens, the largest freshwater fish in North America. We monitored over-winter movement of 86 fish using a hydro-acoustic receiver array in the South Saskatchewan River, Canada. Overall, 20 fish remained within our study system throughout the winter. Lake Sturgeon showed strong aggregation and sedentary movement over-winter, demonstrating a temporal bottleneck. Movement was highly restricted during ice-on periods (ranging from 0.9 km/day in November and April to 0.2 km/day in mid-November to mid-March, with Lake Sturgeon seeking deeper, slower pools. We also show that Lake Sturgeon have strong aggregation behavior, where distance to conspecifics decreased (from 575 to 313 m in preparation for and during ice-on periods. Although the Lake Sturgeon we studied had access to 1100 kilometers of unfragmented riverine habitat, we show that during the over-winter period Lake Sturgeon utilized a single, deep pool (<0.1% of available habitat. The temporal discrepancy between mobile and sedentary behaviors in Lake Sturgeon suggest adaptive management is needed with more localized focus during periods of temporal bottlenecks, even for large-bodied species.

  7. Research in karst aquifers developed in high-mountain areas combining KARSYS models with springs discharge records. Picos de Europa, Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballesteros, Daniel; Meléndez, Mónica; Malard, Arnauld; Jiménez-Sánchez, Montserrat; Heredia, Nemesio; Jeannin, Pierre-Yves; García-Sansegundo, Joaquín

    2014-05-01

    The study of karst aquifers developed in high-mountain areas is quite complex since the application of many techniques of hydrogeology in these areas is difficult, expensive, and requires many hours of field work. In addition, the access to the study area is usually conditioned by the orography and the meteorological conditions. A pragmatic approach to study these aquifers can be the combination of geometric models of the aquifer with the monitoring of the discharge rate of springs and the meteorological records. KARSYS approach (Jeannin et al. 2013) allows us to elaborate a geometric model of karst aquifers establishing the boundaries of the groundwater bodies, the main drainage axes and providing evidences of the catchment delineation of the springs. The aim of this work is to analyse the functioning of the karst aquifer from the western and central part of the Picos de Europa Mountains (Spain) combining the KARSYS approach, the discharge record from two springs and the meteorological records (rain, snow and temperature). The Picos de Europa (North Spain) is a high-mountains area up to 2.6 km altitude with 2,500 mm/year of precipitations. The highest part of these mountains is covered by snow four to seven months a year. The karst aquifer is developed in Carboniferous limestone which is strongly compartmentalized in, at least, 17 groundwater bodies. The method of work includes: 1) the elaboration of a hydrogeological 3D model of the geometry of the karst aquifers by KARSYS approach, 2) the definition of the springs catchment areas based on the hydrogeological 3D model, 3) the selection of two representative springs emerging from the aquifers to study it, 4) the continuous monitoring of water levels in two karst springs since October 2013, 5) the transformation of the water level values to flow values using height-stream relation curves constructed by measures of the spring discharge, and 5) the comparison of the spring discharge rate records and meteorological

  8. The assessment of the habitat and water quality requirements of the stone crayfish (Austropotamobius torrentium and noble crayfish (Astacus astacus species in the rivers from the Anina Mountains (SW Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pârvulescu L.

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The species Austropotamobius torrentium and Astacus astacus are two species known in the EU directives to require deeper understanding of their autecologic requirements before any sustainable conservation effort could be successfully applied. Therefore, the paper aims to analyze the occurrence of these two species of crayfish in the Anina Mountains (Romania in relation to several physical-chemical indicators measured on site. The results suggest that the anthropogenic impacts registered in some of the sampling sites (e.g. organic pollution and river bed modification might have triggered the disappearance of both species from the areas of the water sheds situated downstream villages and towns, deforestation sites and sewage treatment plants. The analysis suggest that both species might have similar ecologic requirements, with a BMWP score of 8 (out of a possible 10, therefore good indicators of pristine aquatic environments and with a possible toleration to pollution but only up to a moderate level. Nevertheless, the lack of cohabitation of the populations of both species at a local scale was discussed along with two possible explaining hypotheses: behavioral exclusion or different times and/or modalities of dispersal history.

  9. The Habitat Connection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naturescope, 1987

    1987-01-01

    Consists of activities which address the causes of habitat destruction and the effects of habitat loss on animals and plants. Identifies habitat loss as the major reason for the endangerment and extinction of plant and animal species. (ML)

  10. Mechanisms Affecting Population Density in Fragmented Habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lutz Tischendorf

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available We conducted a factorial simulation experiment to analyze the relative importance of movement pattern, boundary-crossing probability, and mortality in habitat and matrix on population density, and its dependency on habitat fragmentation, as well as inter-patch distance. We also examined how the initial response of a species to a fragmentation event may affect our observations of population density in post-fragmentation experiments. We found that the boundary-crossing probability from habitat to matrix, which partly determines the emigration rate, is the most important determinant for population density within habitat patches. The probability of crossing a boundary from matrix to habitat had a weaker, but positive, effect on population density. Movement behavior in habitat had a stronger effect on population density than movement behavior in matrix. Habitat fragmentation and inter-patch distance may have a positive or negative effect on population density. The direction of both effects depends on two factors. First, when the boundary-crossing probability from habitat to matrix is high, population density may decline with increasing habitat fragmentation. Conversely, for species with a high matrix-to-habitat boundary-crossing probability, population density may increase with increasing habitat fragmentation. Second, the initial distribution of individuals across the landscape: we found that habitat fragmentation and inter-patch distance were positively correlated with population density when individuals were distributed across matrix and habitat at the beginning of our simulation experiments. The direction of these relationships changed to negative when individuals were initially distributed across habitat only. Our findings imply that the speed of the initial response of organisms to habitat fragmentation events may determine the direction of observed relationships between habitat fragmentation and population density. The time scale of post

  11. Barbus meridionalis Risso, 1827 populations status in the Vişeu River basin (Maramureş Mountains Nature Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bănăduc Doru

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The ecological state of lotic ecosystems occupied naturally by Barbus meridionalis, in the Vişeu Basin within the Maramureş Mountains Natural Park, vary among good to reduced. The inventoried human activities which negatively influence the ecologic state of the Barbus meridionalis species habitats and populations are the organic and mining pollution, and poaching. The habitats with low and inadequate conditions created a reduced status of the Barbus meridionalis populations; the status of Barbus meridionalis populations is not so much affected in the cases of habitats of average to good condition. Barbus meridionalis is considered a relatively common fish species in the researched watershed despite the fact that its populations ecological status has decreased from 2007-2015, but the restoration potential in the area for improving this species status is high.

  12. The origins of mountain geoecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ives, Jack D.

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Mountain geoecology, as a sub-discipline of Geography, stems from the life and work of Carl Troll who, in turn, was inspired by the philosophy and mountain travels of Alexander von Humboldt. As founding chair of the IGU Commission on High-Altitude Geoecology (1968, Troll laid the foundations for inter-disciplinary and international mountain research. The paper traces the evolution of the Commission and its close links with the UNESCO Man and Biosphere Programme (1972- and the United Nations University’s mountain Project (1978-. This facilitated the formation of a major force for inclusion of a mountain chapter in AGENDA 21 during the 1992 Rio de Janeiro Herat Summit (UNCED and the related designation by the United Nations of 2002 as the International Year of Mountains. In this way, mountain geoecology not only contributed to worldwide mountain research but also entered the political arena in the struggle for sustainable mountain development and the well-being of mountain people.La geoecología de montaña, como sub-disciplina de la Geografía, entronca con la vida y trabajo de Carl Troll, quien, a su vez, fue inspirado por la filosofía y viajes de Alexander von Humboldt. Como presidente fundador de la comisión de la UGI sobre High Altitude Geoecology (1968, Troll colocó las bases para la investigación interdisciplinar e internacional de las montañas. Este trabajo presenta la evolución de la Comisión y sus estrechas relaciones con el Programa Hombre y Biosfera de UNESCO (1972- y con el Proyecto de montaña de la Universidad de Naciones Unidas (1978-. Esto facilitó la inclusión de un capítulo sobre la montaña en AGENDA 21 durante la Cumbre de la Tierra de Río de Janeiro (UNCED, y la consiguiente designación de 2002 como el Año Internacional de las Montañas por parte de Naciones Unidas. En este sentido, la geoecología de montaña no sólo contribuyó a la investigación de las montañas del mundo sino que también empujó a la pol

  13. Seasonal distribution and aerial surveys of mountain goats in Mount Rainier, North Cascades, and Olympic National Parks, Washington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Kurt; Beirne, Katherine; Happe, Patricia; Hoffman, Roger; Rice, Cliff; Schaberl, Jim

    2011-01-01

    We described the seasonal distribution of Geographic Positioning System (GPS)-collared mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus) in Mount Rainier, North Cascades, and Olympic National Parks to evaluate aerial survey sampling designs and provide general information for park managers. This work complemented a companion study published elsewhere of aerial detection biases of mountain goat surveys in western Washington. Specific objectives reported here were to determine seasonal and altitudinal movements, home range distributions, and temporal dynamics of mountain goat movements in and out of aerial survey sampling frames established within each park. We captured 25 mountain goats in Mount Rainier (9), North Cascades (5), and Olympic (11) National Parks, and fitted them with GPS-collars programmed to obtain 6-8 locations daily. We obtained location data on 23 mountain goats for a range of 39-751 days from 2003 to 2008. Altitudinal distributions of GPS-collared mountain goats varied individually and seasonally, but median altitudes used by individual goats during winter ranged from 817 to 1,541 meters in Olympic and North Cascades National Parks, and 1,215 to 1,787 meters in Mount Rainier National Park. Median altitudes used by GPS-collared goats during summer ranged from 1,312 to 1,819 meters in Olympic and North Cascades National Parks, and 1,780 to 2,061 meters in Mount Rainier National Park. GPS-collared mountain goats generally moved from low-altitude winter ranges to high-altitude summer ranges between June 11 and June 19 (range April 24-July 3) and from summer to winter ranges between October 26 and November 9 (range September 11-December 23). Seasonal home ranges (95 percent of adaptive kernel utilization distribution) of males and female mountain goats were highly variable, ranging from 1.6 to 37.0 kilometers during summers and 0.7 to 9.5 kilometers during winters. Locations of GPS-collared mountain goats were almost 100 percent within the sampling frame used for

  14. Aeolian controls of soil geochemistry and weathering fluxes in high-elevation ecosystems of the Rocky Mountains, Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Corey R.; Reynolds, Richard L.; Kettterer, Michael E.; Neff, Jason C.

    2013-01-01

    When dust inputs are large or have persisted for long periods of time, the signature of dust additions are often apparent in soils. The of dust will be greatest where the geochemical composition of dust is distinct from local sources of soil parent material. In this study the influence of dust accretion on soil geochemistry is quantified for two different soils from the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado, USA. At both study sites, dust is enriched in several trace elements relative to local rock, especially Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn. Mass-balance calculations that do not explicitly account for dust inputs indicate the accumulation of some elements in soil beyond what can be explained by weathering of local rock. Most observed elemental enrichments are explained by accounting for the long-term accretion of dust, based on modern isotopic and geochemical estimates. One notable exception is Pb, which based on mass-balance calculations and isotopic measurements may have an additional source at one of the study sites. These results suggest that dust is a major factor influencing the development of soil in these settings and is also an important control of soil weathering fluxes. After accounting for dust inputs in mass-balance calculations, Si weathering fluxes from San Juan Mountain soils are within the range observed for other temperate systems. Comparing dust inputs with mass-balanced based flux estimates suggests dust could account for as much as 50–80% of total long-term chemical weathering fluxes. These results support the notion that dust inputs may sustain chemical weathering fluxes even in relatively young continental settings. Given the widespread input of far-traveled dust, the weathering of dust is likely and important and underappreciated aspect of the global weathering engine.

  15. Aeolian controls of soil geochemistry and weathering fluxes in high-elevation ecosystems of the Rocky Mountains, Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Corey R.; Reynolds, Richard L.; Ketterer, Michael E.; Neff, Jason C.

    2013-04-01

    When dust inputs are large or have persisted for long periods of time, the signature of dust additions are often apparent in soils. The of dust will be greatest where the geochemical composition of dust is distinct from local sources of soil parent material. In this study the influence of dust accretion on soil geochemistry is quantified for two different soils from the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado, USA. At both study sites, dust is enriched in several trace elements relative to local rock, especially Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn. Mass-balance calculations that do not explicitly account for dust inputs indicate the accumulation of some elements in soil beyond what can be explained by weathering of local rock. Most observed elemental enrichments are explained by accounting for the long-term accretion of dust, based on modern isotopic and geochemical estimates. One notable exception is Pb, which based on mass-balance calculations and isotopic measurements may have an additional source at one of the study sites. These results suggest that dust is a major factor influencing the development of soil in these settings and is also an important control of soil weathering fluxes. After accounting for dust inputs in mass-balance calculations, Si weathering fluxes from San Juan Mountain soils are within the range observed for other temperate systems. Comparing dust inputs with mass-balanced based flux estimates suggests dust could account for as much as 50-80% of total long-term chemical weathering fluxes. These results support the notion that dust inputs may sustain chemical weathering fluxes even in relatively young continental settings. Given the widespread input of far-traveled dust, the weathering of dust is likely and important and underappreciated aspect of the global weathering engine.

  16. Total flavonoid concentrations of bryophytes from Tianmu Mountain, Zhejiang Province (China: Phylogeny and ecological factors.

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    Xin Wang

    Full Text Available The flavonoids in bryophytes may have great significance in phylogeny and metabolism research. However, to date there has been little research on bryophyte metabolites, especially flavonoids. To redress this somewhat, we determined flavonoid concentrations of bryophytes from Tianmu Mountain through a colorimetric assay and considered the factors influencing the results. This is the first time that the flavonoid contents of bryophytes have been examined in detail. The results revealed a range of total flavonoid concentrations in 90 samples collected from Tianmu Mountain from 1.8 to 22.3 mg/g (w/w. The total flavonoid contents of liverworts were generally higher than those of mosses; acrocarpous mosses had generally higher values than that of pleurocarpous mosses. The total flavonoid contents of bryophytes growing at lower light levels were general higher than those growing in full-sun. The total flavonoid contents of epiphytic bryophytes were highest, while those of aquatic bryophytes were the lowest. Total flavonoid contents of species growing at low-latitudes were much higher than those at high-latitude individuals. In conclusion, total flavonoid contents of bryophytes have some connection with plant phylogeny; more flavonoids might be contained in relatively primitive bryophytes. Meanwhile, the effects of ecological factors on total flavonoid contents of bryophytes exist; light and habitat (especially tree habitat and river habitat might be representative factor.

  17. Relationships between nutritional condition of adult females and relative carrying capacity for rocky mountain Elk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piasecke, J.R.; Bender, L.C.

    2009-01-01

    Lactation can have significant costs to individual and population-level productivity because of the high energetic demands it places on dams. Because the difference in condition between lactating and dry Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) cows tends to disappear as nutritional quality rises, the magnitude of that difference could be used to relate condition to habitat quality or the capability of habitats to support elk. We therefore compared nutritional condition of ???2.5-yr-old lactating and dry cows from six free-ranging RockyMountain elk populations throughout the United States.Our goal was to quantify differential accrual of body fat (BF) reserves to determine whether the condition of dry and lactating cows could be used to define relevant management thresholds of habitat quality (i.e., relative carrying capacity) and consequently potential performance of elk populations. Levels of BF that lactating cows were able to accrue in autumn and the proportional difference in BF between dry and lactating cows in autumn were related (F 1-2,10???16.2, Plogistic model to predict relative proximity to ecological carrying capacity (ECC), our population-years ranged from3-97%ofECCand proportion of the population lactating (an index of calf survival) was negatively related to proportion of ECC. Results indicate that the proportional difference in accrual of BF between lactating and dry cows can provide a sensitive index to where elk populations reside relative to the quality of their range.

  18. Typical land use pattern in high-mountain landscape - part of the Vysoke Tatry Mts. and the Podtatranska kotlina Basin; map fragment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hrnciarova, T.; Kubicek, F.; Ruzickova, H.; Berkova, A.; Simonovic, V.

    2002-01-01

    The territory of the Vysoke Tatry (High Tatras) Mts. and the Podtatranska kotlina Basin documents the human impact even in the highest situated parts of Slovakia. The human impact was obvious the same in the past (lowering of the upper timberline and the dwarf pine scrub by grazing) as in the present time (recreation, tourism, and sport). The most frequent wood species of the Tatras forests is the spruce tree. Fir occurs up to the altitude of 1,250 m above sea level. The wood species accompanying the spruce in higher positions are larch, cembra pine, and mountain ash where they form the upper timberline. The mountain dwarf pine scrub creates an independent tier above the upper timber line in the altitude oscillating between 1,550 m and 1,850 m and gradually transits into alpine meadows with rare flora and fauna. The foothill landscape is intensively agriculturally used. The present species composition of the meadows and pastures, as well as their landscape scenery was decisively determined by intensification of farming (adjustments of the terrain, draining of waterlogged areas and spring areas, removal of woody vegetation, creation of disproportionately large fields, sowing of introduced grass species, and the like). It has not only caused the change of the original nature of meadows and pastures, but it has also changed the whole sub-Tatras landscape. (authors)

  19. Mountain pine beetles colonizing historical and naive host trees are associated with a bacterial community highly enriched in genes contributing to terpene metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Aaron S; Aylward, Frank O; Adams, Sandye M; Erbilgin, Nadir; Aukema, Brian H; Currie, Cameron R; Suen, Garret; Raffa, Kenneth F

    2013-06-01

    The mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae, is a subcortical herbivore native to western North America that can kill healthy conifers by overcoming host tree defenses, which consist largely of high terpene concentrations. The mechanisms by which these beetles contend with toxic compounds are not well understood. Here, we explore a component of the hypothesis that beetle-associated bacterial symbionts contribute to the ability of D. ponderosae to overcome tree defenses by assisting with terpene detoxification. Such symbionts may facilitate host tree transitions during range expansions currently being driven by climate change. For example, this insect has recently breached the historical geophysical barrier of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, providing access to näive tree hosts and unprecedented connectivity to eastern forests. We use culture-independent techniques to describe the bacterial community associated with D. ponderosae beetles and their galleries from their historical host, Pinus contorta, and their more recent host, hybrid P. contorta-Pinus banksiana. We show that these communities are enriched with genes involved in terpene degradation compared with other plant biomass-processing microbial communities. These pine beetle microbial communities are dominated by members of the genera Pseudomonas, Rahnella, Serratia, and Burkholderia, and the majority of genes involved in terpene degradation belong to these genera. Our work provides the first metagenome of bacterial communities associated with a bark beetle and is consistent with a potential microbial contribution to detoxification of tree defenses needed to survive the subcortical environment.

  20. Can small island mountains provide relief from the Subtropical Precipitation Decline? Simulating future precipitation regimes for small island nations using high resolution Regional Climate Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowden, J.; Terando, A. J.; Misra, V.; Wootten, A.

    2017-12-01

    Small island nations are vulnerable to changes in the hydrologic cycle because of their limited water resources. This risk to water security is likely even higher in sub-tropical regions where anthropogenic forcing of the climate system is expected to lead to a drier future (the so-called `dry-get-drier' pattern). However, high-resolution numerical modeling experiments have also shown an enhancement of existing orographically-influenced precipitation patterns on islands with steep topography, potentially mitigating subtropical drying on windward mountain sides. Here we explore the robustness of the near-term (25-45 years) subtropical precipitation decline (SPD) across two island groupings in the Caribbean, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These islands, forming the boundary between the Greater and Lesser Antilles, significantly differ in size, topographic relief, and orientation to prevailing winds. Two 2-km horizontal resolution regional climate model simulations are used to downscale a total of three different GCMs under the RCP8.5 emissions scenario. Results indicate some possibility for modest increases in precipitation at the leading edge of the Luquillo Mountains in Puerto Rico, but consistent declines elsewhere. We conclude with a discussion of potential explanations for these patterns and the attendant risks to water security that subtropical small island nations could face as the climate warms.