WorldWideScience

Sample records for in-stream plant ecology

  1. Quantitative plant ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Damgaard, Christian

    2014-01-01

    This e-book is written in the Wolfram' CDF format (download free CDF player from Wolfram.com) The objective of this e-book is to introduce the population ecological concepts for measuring and predicting the ecological success of plant species. This will be done by focusing on the measurement...... and statistical modelling of plant species abundance and the relevant ecological processes that control species abundance. The focus on statistical modelling and likelihood function based methods also means that more algorithm based methods, e.g. ordination techniques and boosted regression tress...

  2. Macrophytes: Ecology of aquatic plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bornette, G.; Puijalon, S.

    2009-01-01

    Aquatic plants contribute to maintaining key functions and related biodiversity in freshwater ecosystems, and to provide the needs of human societies. The way the ecological niches of macrophytes are determined by abiotic filters and biotic ones is considered. A simple, broadly applicable model of

  3. Ecological niche of plant pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ecaterina Fodor

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Disease ecology is a new approach to the understanding of the spread and dynamics of pathogens in natural and man-made environments. Defining and describing the ecological niche of the pathogens is one of the major tasks for ecological theory, as well as for practitioners preoccupied with the control and forecasting of established and emerging diseases. Niche theory has been periodically revised, not including in an explicit way the pathogens. However, many progresses have been achieved in niche modeling of disease spread, but few attempts were made to construct a theoretical frame for the ecological niche of pathogens. The paper is a review of the knowledge accumulated during last decades in the niche theory of pathogens and proposes an ecological approach in research. It quest for new control methods in what concerns forest plant pathogens, with a special emphasis on fungi like organisms of the genus Phytophthora. Species of Phytophthora are the most successful plant pathogens of the moment, affecting forest and agricultural systems worldwide, many of them being invasive alien organisms in many ecosystems. The hyperspace of their ecological niche is defined by hosts, environment and human interference, as main axes. To select most important variables within the hyperspace, is important the understanding of the complex role of pathogens in the ecosystems as well as for control programs. Biotic relationships within ecosystem of host-pathogen couple are depicted by ecological network and specific metrics attached to this. The star shaped network is characterized by few high degree nodes, by short path lengths and relatively low connectivity, premises for a rapid disturbance spread. 

  4. Ecological niche of plant pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ecaterina Fodor

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Disease ecology is a new approach to the understanding of the spread and dynamics of pathogens in natural and man-made environments. Defining and describing the ecological niche of the pathogens is one of the major tasks for ecological theory, as well as for practitioners preoccupied with the control and forecasting of established and emerging diseases. Niche theory has been periodically revised, not including in an explicit way the pathogens. However, many progresses have been achieved in niche modeling of disease spread, but few attempts were made to construct a theoretical frame for the ecological niche of pathogens. The paper is a review of the knowledge accumulated during last decades in the niche theory of pathogens and proposes an ecological approach in research. It quest for new control methods in what concerns forest plant pathogens, with a special emphasis on fungi like organisms of the genus Phytophthora. Species of Phytophthora are the most successful plant pathogens of the moment, affecting forest and agricultural systems worldwide, many of them being invasive alien organisms in many ecosystems. The hyperspace of their ecological niche is defined by hosts, environment and human interference, as main axes. To select most important variables within the hyperspace, is important for the understanding of the complex role of pathogens in the ecosystems as well as for control programs. Biotic relationships within ecosystem of host-pathogen couple are depicted by ecological network and specific metrics attached to this. The star shaped network is characterized by few high degree nodes, by short path lengths and relatively low connectivity, premises for a rapid disturbance spread.

  5. Biotic and abiotic variables influencing plant litter breakdown in streams: a global study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Richard G.; Hui, Cang; Gessner, Mark O.; Pérez, Javier; Alexandrou, Markos A.; Graça, Manuel A. S.; Cardinale, Bradley J.; Albariño, Ricardo J.; Arunachalam, Muthukumarasamy; Barmuta, Leon A.; Boulton, Andrew J.; Bruder, Andreas; Callisto, Marcos; Chauvet, Eric; Death, Russell G.; Dudgeon, David; Encalada, Andrea C.; Ferreira, Verónica; Figueroa, Ricardo; Flecker, Alexander S.; Gonçalves, José F.; Helson, Julie; Iwata, Tomoya; Jinggut, Tajang; Mathooko, Jude; Mathuriau, Catherine; M'Erimba, Charles; Moretti, Marcelo S.; Pringle, Catherine M.; Ramírez, Alonso; Ratnarajah, Lavenia; Rincon, José; Yule, Catherine M.

    2016-01-01

    Plant litter breakdown is a key ecological process in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. Streams and rivers, in particular, contribute substantially to global carbon fluxes. However, there is little information available on the relative roles of different drivers of plant litter breakdown in fresh waters, particularly at large scales. We present a global-scale study of litter breakdown in streams to compare the roles of biotic, climatic and other environmental factors on breakdown rates. We conducted an experiment in 24 streams encompassing latitudes from 47.8° N to 42.8° S, using litter mixtures of local species differing in quality and phylogenetic diversity (PD), and alder (Alnus glutinosa) to control for variation in litter traits. Our models revealed that breakdown of alder was driven by climate, with some influence of pH, whereas variation in breakdown of litter mixtures was explained mainly by litter quality and PD. Effects of litter quality and PD and stream pH were more positive at higher temperatures, indicating that different mechanisms may operate at different latitudes. These results reflect global variability caused by multiple factors, but unexplained variance points to the need for expanded global-scale comparisons. PMID:27122551

  6. Game theory and plant ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNickle, Gordon G; Dybzinski, Ray

    2013-04-01

    The fixed and plastic traits possessed by a plant, which may be collectively thought of as its strategy, are commonly modelled as density-independent adaptations to its environment. However, plant strategies may also represent density- or frequency-dependent adaptations to the strategies used by neighbours. Game theory provides the tools to characterise such density- and frequency-dependent interactions. Here, we review the contributions of game theory to plant ecology. After briefly reviewing game theory from the perspective of plant ecology, we divide our review into three sections. First, game theoretical models of allocation to shoots and roots often predict investment in those organs beyond what would be optimal in the absence of competition. Second, game theoretical models of enemy defence suggest that an individual's investment in defence is not only a means of reducing its own tissue damage but also a means of deflecting enemies onto competitors. Finally, game theoretical models of trade with mutualistic partners suggest that the optimal trade may reflect competition for access to mutualistic partners among plants. In short, our review provides an accessible entrance to game theory that will help plant ecologists enrich their research with its worldview and existing predictions. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Bridging the gap between theoretical ecology and real ecosystems: modeling invertebrate community composition in streams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuwirth, Nele; Reichert, Peter

    2013-02-01

    For the first time, we combine concepts of theoretical food web modeling, the metabolic theory of ecology, and ecological stoichiometry with the use of functional trait databases to predict the coexistence of invertebrate taxa in streams. We developed a mechanistic model that describes growth, death, and respiration of different taxa dependent on various environmental influence factors to estimate survival or extinction. Parameter and input uncertainty is propagated to model results. Such a model is needed to test our current quantitative understanding of ecosystem structure and function and to predict effects of anthropogenic impacts and restoration efforts. The model was tested using macroinvertebrate monitoring data from a catchment of the Swiss Plateau. Even without fitting model parameters, the model is able to represent key patterns of the coexistence structure of invertebrates at sites varying in external conditions (litter input, shading, water quality). This confirms the suitability of the model concept. More comprehensive testing and resulting model adaptations will further increase the predictive accuracy of the model.

  8. Chemical mixtures and environmental effects: a pilot study to assess ecological exposure and effects in streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxton, Herbert T.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Kuivila, Kathryn; Kolpin, Dana W.; Bradley, Paul M.; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Mills, Marc A.

    2015-01-01

    Assessment and management of the risks of exposure to complex chemical mixtures in streams are priorities for human and environmental health organizations around the world. The current lack of information on the composition and variability of environmental mixtures and a limited understanding of their combined effects are fundamental obstacles to timely identification and prevention of adverse human and ecological effects of exposure. This report describes the design of a field-based study of the composition and biological activity of chemical mixtures in U.S. stream waters affected by a wide range of human activities and contaminant sources. The study is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Scientists sampled 38 streams spanning 24 States and Puerto Rico. Thirty-four of the sites were located in watersheds impacted by multiple contaminant sources, including industrial and municipal wastewater discharges, crop and animal agricultural runoff, urban runoff, and other point and nonpoint contaminant sources. The remaining four sites were minimally development reference watersheds. All samples underwent comprehensive chemical and biological characterization, including sensitive and specific direct analysis for over 700 dissolved organic and inorganic chemicals and field parameters, identification of unknown contaminants (environmental diagnostics), and a variety of bioassays to evaluate biological activity and toxicity.

  9. ECOLOGICAL ANALYSIS OF HYDROLOGIC DISTURBANCE REGIMES IN STREAMS OF NORTH AND SOUTH DAKOTA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streamflow variability is an important component of physical disturbance in streams, and is likely to be a major organizing feature of habitat for stream fishes. The disturbance regime in streams is frequently described by the variability in streamflow from both floods and prolo...

  10. Principles for ecologically based invasive plant management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeremy J. James; Brenda S. Smith; Edward A. Vasquez; Roger L. Sheley

    2010-01-01

    Land managers have long identified a critical need for a practical and effective framework for designing restoration strategies, especially where invasive plants dominate. A holistic, ecologically based, invasive plant management (EBIPM) framework that integrates ecosystem health assessment, knowledge of ecological processes, and adaptive management into a successional...

  11. The ecology of methane in streams and rivers: Patterns, controls, and global significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, Emily H.; Casson, Nora J.; Christel, Samuel T.; Crawford, John T.; Loken, Luke C.; Oliver, Samantha K.

    2016-01-01

    Streams and rivers can substantially modify organic carbon (OC) inputs from terrestrial landscapes, and much of this processing is the result of microbial respiration. While carbon dioxide (CO2) is the major end-product of ecosystem respiration, methane (CH4) is also present in many fluvial environments even though methanogenesis typically requires anoxic conditions that may be scarce in these systems. Given recent recognition of the pervasiveness of this greenhouse gas in streams and rivers, we synthesized existing research and data to identify patterns and drivers of CH4, knowledge gaps, and research opportunities. This included examining the history of lotic CH4 research, creating a database of concentrations and fluxes (MethDB) to generate a global-scale estimate of fluvial CH4 efflux, and developing a conceptual framework and using this framework to consider how human activities may modify fluvial CH4 dynamics. Current understanding of CH4 in streams and rivers has been strongly influenced by goals of understanding OC processing and quantifying the contribution of CH4 to ecosystem C fluxes. Less effort has been directed towards investigating processes that dictate in situ CH4 production and loss. CH4 makes a meager contribution to watershed or landscape C budgets, but streams and rivers are often significant CH4 sources to the atmosphere across these same spatial extents. Most fluvial systems are supersaturated with CH4 and we estimate an annual global emission of 26.8 Tg CH4, equivalent to ~15-40% of wetland and lake effluxes, respectively. Less clear is the role of CH4 oxidation, methanogenesis, and total anaerobic respiration to whole ecosystem production and respiration. Controls on CH4 generation and persistence can be viewed in terms of proximate controls that influence methanogenesis (organic matter, temperature, alternative electron acceptors, nutrients) and distal geomorphic and hydrologic drivers. Multiple controls combined with its

  12. ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF METALS IN STREAMS ON A DEFENSE MATERIALS PROCESSING SITE IN SOUTH CAROLINA, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paller, M.; Dyer, S.

    2009-09-01

    The Savannah River Site (SRS) is a 780 km{sup 2} U.S. Department of Energy facility near Aiken SC established in 1950 to produce nuclear materials. SRS streams are 'integrators' that potentially receive water transportable contaminants from all sources within their watersheds necessitating a GIS-based watershed approach to organize contaminant distribution data and accurately characterize the effects of multiple contaminant sources on aquatic organisms. Concentrations of metals in sediments, fish, and water were elevated in streams affected by SRS operations, but contaminant exposure models for Lontra Canadensis and Ceryle alcyon indicated that toxicological reference values were exceeded only by Hg and Al. Macroinvertebrate community structure was unrelated to sediment metal concentrations. This study indicated that (1) modeling studies and field bioassessments provide a complementary basis for addressing the individual and cumulative effects of contaminants, (2) habitat effects must be controlled when assessing contaminant impacts, (3) sensitivity analyses of contaminant exposure models are helpful in apportioning sampling effort, and (4) contaminants released during fifty years of industrial operations have not resulted in demonstrable harm to aquatic organisms in SRS streams.

  13. Plant insecticidal toxins in ecological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibanez, Sébastien; Gallet, Christiane; Després, Laurence

    2012-04-01

    Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects' vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  14. Plant Insecticidal Toxins in Ecological Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Ibanez

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects’ vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  15. The ecological risks of transgenic plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giovannetti, Manuela

    2003-01-01

    Biotechnologies have been utilized "ante litteram" for thousands of years to produce food and drink and genetic engineering techniques have been widely applied to produce many compounds for human use, from insulin to other medicines. The debate on genetically modified (GM) organisms broke out all over the world only when GM crops were released into the field. Plant ecologists, microbiologists and population geneticists carried out experiments aimed at evaluating the environmental impact of GM crops. The most significant findings concern: the spread of transgenes through GM pollen diffusion and its environmental impact after hybridisation with closely related wild species or subspecies; horizontal gene transfer from transgenic plants to soil microbes; the impact of insecticide proteins released into the soil by transformed plants on non-target microbial soil communities. Recent developments in genetic engineering produced a technology, dubbed "Terminator", which protects patented genes introduced in transgenic plants by killing the seeds in the second generation. This genetic construct, which interferes so heavily with fundamental life processes, is considered dangerous and should be ex-ante evaluated taking into account the data on "unexpected events", as here discussed, instead of relying on the "safe until proven otherwise" claim. Awareness that scientists, biotechnologists and genetic engineers cannot answer the fundamental question "how likely is that transgenes will be transferred from cultivated plants into the natural environment?" should foster long-term studies on the ecological risks and benefits of transgenic crops.

  16. Chemical ecology of insect-plant interactions: ecological significance of plant secondary metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishida, Ritsuo

    2014-01-01

    Plants produce a diverse array of secondary metabolites as chemical barriers against herbivores. Many phytophagous insects are highly adapted to these allelochemicals and use such unique substances as the specific host-finding cues, defensive substances of their own, and even as sex pheromones or their precursors by selectively sensing, incorporating, and/or processing these phytochemicals. Insects also serve as pollinators often effectively guided by specific floral fragrances. This review demonstrates the ecological significance of such plant secondary metabolites in the highly diverse interactions between insects and plants.

  17. Unique ecological impacts associated with offshore floating nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adams, S.M.; McLean, R.B.

    1979-01-01

    The ecological impacts that could occur as a result of site construction and operation of an offshore floating nuclear power plant are identified by comparing the principal ecological features associated with offshore siting with those associated with the siting of onshore estuarine plants. In general, the ecological impacts of offshore nuclear plants should be relatively smaller than those of estuarine plants. Possible factors that could increase the relative impacts of offshore plants are high frequency of contact with schools of fish, siting near inlets to estuaries or other ecologically important areas, and the persistence of halogen residuals. Identifying the potential ecological impacts associated with the siting of offshore plants permits the development of various monitoring programs and measures to minimize these impacts

  18. Ecological and population genetics of locally rare plants: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon A. Lei

    2001-01-01

    Plant species with limited dispersal ability, narrow geographical and physiological tolerance ranges, as well as with specific habitat and ecological requirements are likely to be rare. Small and isolated populations and species contain low levels of within-population genetic variation in many plant species. The gene pool of plants is a product of phenotype-environment...

  19. Introduction to special issue on the ecology of clonal plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gross, K. L.; Herben, T.; Klimešová, Jitka

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 52, 3-4 (2017), s. 265-267 ISSN 1211-9520 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : Introduction to special issue * clonal plants * clonal meeting Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 1.017, year: 2016

  20. Ecological Risk Assessment of Genetically Modified Higher Plants (GMHP)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjær, C.; Damgaard, C.; Kjellsson, G.

    Preface This publication is a first version of a manual identifying the data needs for ecological risk assessment of genetically modified higher plants (GMHP). It is the intention of the authors to stimulate further discussion of what data are needed in order to conduct a proper ecological risk...... of the project Biotechnology: elements in environmental risk assessment of genetically modified plants. December 1999 Christian Kjær Introduction In ecological risk assessment of transgenic plants, information on a wide range of subjects is needed for an effective and reliable assessment procedure...... in the amendment to the directive. This report suggests a structured way to identify the type of data needed to perform a sound ecological risk assessment for genetically modified higher plants (GMHP). The identified data types are intended to support the evaluation of the following risks: risk of invasion...

  1. Terpenoids in plant signaling, chemical ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kappers, I.F.; Dicke, M.; Bouwmeester, H.J.

    2008-01-01

    Terpenoids constitute the largest class of secondary metabolites in the plant kingdom. Because of their immense structural diversity and the resulting diversity in physiochemical properties, these molecules are particularly important for plant communication with other organisms. In this article, we

  2. Forest climbing plants of West Africa: diversity, ecology and management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bongers, F.J.J.M.; Parren, M.P.E.; Traoré, D.

    2005-01-01

    Climbing plants, including lianas, represent a fascinating component of the ecology of tropical forests. This book focuses on the climbing plants of West African forests. Based on original research, it presents information on the flora (including a checklist), diversity (with overviews at several

  3. The effects of drainage on groundwater quality and plant species distribution in stream valley meadows

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grootjans, A.P.; Diggelen, R. van; Wassen, M.J.; Wiersinga, W.A.

    1988-01-01

    Conditions in fen meadows in Dutch stream valleys are influenced by both deep (Ca2+-rich) and shallow (Ca2+-poor) groundwater flows. The distribution patterns of phreatophytic (groundwater-influenced) plant species showed distinct relationships with the distribution of different groundwater types.

  4. Ecology and evolution of plant-pollinator interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Randall J; Irwin, Rebecca E; Flanagan, Rebecca J; Karron, Jeffrey D

    2009-06-01

    Some of the most exciting advances in pollination biology have resulted from interdisciplinary research combining ecological and evolutionary perspectives. For example, these two approaches have been essential for understanding the functional ecology of floral traits, the dynamics of pollen transport, competition for pollinator services, and patterns of specialization and generalization in plant-pollinator interactions. However, as research in these and other areas has progressed, many pollination biologists have become more specialized in their research interests, focusing their attention on either evolutionary or ecological questions. We believe that the continuing vigour of a synthetic and interdisciplinary field like pollination biology depends on renewed connections between ecological and evolutionary approaches. In this Viewpoint paper we highlight the application of ecological and evolutionary approaches to two themes in pollination biology: (1) links between pollinator behaviour and plant mating systems, and (2) generalization and specialization in pollination systems. We also describe how mathematical models and synthetic analyses have broadened our understanding of pollination biology, especially in human-modified landscapes. We conclude with several suggestions that we hope will stimulate future research. This Viewpoint also serves as the introduction to this Special Issue on the Ecology and Evolution of Plant-Pollinator Interactions. These papers provide inspiring examples of the synergy between evolutionary and ecological approaches, and offer glimpses of great accomplishments yet to come.

  5. In-Stream Sediment Dynamics for predicted environmental concentration calculations of plant protection products in the FOCUSSW Scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strehmel, Alexander; Erzgräber, Beate; Gottesbüren, Bernhard

    2016-04-01

    The exposure assessment for the EU registration procedure of plant protection products (PPP), which is based on the 'Forum for the co-ordination of pesticide fate models and their use' (FOCUS), currently considers only periods of 12-16 months for the exposure assessment in surface water bodies. However, in a recent scientific opinion of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) it is argued that in a multi-year exposure assessment, the accumulation of PPP substances in river sediment may be a relevant process. Therefore, the EFSA proposed to introduce a sediment accumulation factor in order to account for enrichment of PPP substances over several years in the sediment. The calculation of this accumulation factor, however, would consider degradation in sediment as the only dissipation path, and does not take into account riverine sediment dynamics. In order to assess the influence of deposition and the possible extent of substance accumulation in the sediment phase, the hydraulic model HEC-RAS was employed for an assessment of in-stream sediment dynamics of the FOCUS stream scenarios. The model was parameterized according to the stream characteristics of the FOCUS scenarios and was run over a period of 20 years. The results show that with the distribution of grain sizes and the ranges of flow velocity in the FOCUS streams the main sediment process in the streams is transport. First modeling results suggest that about 80% of the eroded sediment mass from the adjacent field are transported to the downstream end of the stream and out of the system, while only about 20% are deposited in the river bed. At the same time, only about 30% of in-stream sediment mass stems from the adjacent field and is associated with PPP substance, while the remaining sediment consists of the substance-free base sediment concentration regarded in the scenarios. With this, the hydraulic modelling approach is able to support the development of a meaningful sediment accumulation factor by

  6. ADDING ECOLOGICAL REALISM TO PLANT TESTING

    Science.gov (United States)

    Current test protocols for the protection of nontarget plants used when registering pesticides in the United States and many other countries depend on two tests using greenhouse grown, agricultural seedling plants. The seedling emergence and vegetative vigor tests are used to as...

  7. Plant-aphid interactions: molecular and ecological perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goggin, Fiona L

    2007-08-01

    Many aphids are major agricultural pests because of their unparalleled reproductive capacity and their ability to manipulate host plant physiology. Aphid population growth and its impact on plant fitness are strongly influenced by interactions with other organisms, including plant pathogens, endophytes, aphid endosymbionts, predators, parasitoids, ants, and other herbivores. Numerous molecular and genomic resources have recently been developed to identify sources of aphid resistance in plants, as well as potentially novel targets for control in aphids. Moreover, the same model systems that are used to explore direct molecular interactions between plants and aphids can be utilized to study the ecological context in which they occur.

  8. Embracing community ecology in plant microbiome research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dini-Andreote, F.; Raaijmakers, J.M.

    2018-01-01

    Community assembly is mediated by selection, dispersal, drift, and speciation. Environmental selection is mostly used to date to explain patterns in plant microbiome assembly, whereas the influence of the other processes remains largely elusive. Recent studies highlight that adopting community

  9. Selenium accumulation in plants--phytotechnological applications and ecological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdez Barillas, José Rodolfo; Quinn, Colin F; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H

    2011-01-01

    Selenium (Se) is an essential trace element for many organisms including humans, yet toxic at higher levels. Both Se deficiency and toxicity are problems worldwide. Since plants readily accumulate and volatilize Se, they may be used both as a source of dietary Se and for removing excess Se from the environment. Plant species differ in their capacity to metabolize and accumulate Se, from non-Se accumulators ( 1,000 mg Se/kg DW). Here we review plant mechanisms of Se metabolism in these various plant types. We also summarize results from genetic engineering that have led to enhanced plant Se accumulation, volatilization, and/or tolerance, including field studies. Before using Se-accumulating plants at a large scale we need to evaluate the ecological implications. Research so far indicates that plant Se accumulation significantly affects the plant's ecological interactions below and above ground. Selenium canprotect plants from fungal pathogens and from a variety of invertebrate and vertebrate herbivores, due to both deterrence and toxicity. However, specialist (Se-tolerant herbivores), detritivores and endophytes appear to utilize Se hyperaccumulator plants as a resource. These findings are relevant for managing phytoremediation of Se and similar elements.

  10. Ecological aspects of nuclear power plants in coastal environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lebreton, P.

    1976-01-01

    A review is presented about ecological effects of giant nuclear Power Plants (ca. 5,000 MWe) on coastal environment. From short to long time, the problems concern the following points of view: - physical: (sitology; necessity of ecological mapping); - mechanical: (the cooling systems. 'Courantology'. Disturbance of marine micro- and macro-organisms); - thermal: (the heated discharges; thermal pollution. Effects on dissolved chemicals and marine organisms. Acquaculture and its limits); - chemical and radiochemical: (synergistic pollutions. Chlorine vs. fouling. Acute or chronic radioactive effluents; concentration by food chains). The conclusions emphasize the necessity of 'pluridisciplinarity' and 'zero-point' definition. Three ecological categories can be distinguished on the basis of water physical turn-over; to this categories correspond various standards and recommandations for management of nuclear Power Plants in coastal zones [fr

  11. Ethnomedicinal and ecological status of plants in Garhwal Himalaya, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background The northern part of India harbours a great diversity of medicinal plants due to its distinct geography and ecological marginal conditions. The traditional medical systems of northern India are part of a time tested culture and honored still by people today. These traditional systems have been curing complex disease for more than 3,000 years. With rapidly growing demand for these medicinal plants, most of the plant populations have been depleted, indicating a lack of ecological knowledge among communities using the plants. Thus, an attempt was made in this study to focus on the ecological status of ethnomedicinal plants, to determine their availability in the growing sites, and to inform the communities about the sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants in the wild. Methods The ecological information regarding ethnomedicinal plants was collected in three different climatic regions (tropical, sub-tropical and temperate) for species composition in different forest layers. The ecological information was assessed using the quadrate sampling method. A total of 25 quadrats, 10 × 10 m were laid out at random in order to sample trees and shrubs, and 40 quadrats of 1 × 1 m for herbaceous plants. In each climatic region, three vegetation sites were selected for ecological information; the mean values of density, basal cover, and the importance value index from all sites of each region were used to interpret the final data. Ethnomedicinal uses were collected from informants of adjacent villages. About 10% of inhabitants (older, experienced men and women) were interviewed about their use of medicinal plants. A consensus analysis of medicinal plant use between the different populations was conducted. Results Across the different climatic regions a total of 57 species of plants were reported: 14 tree species, 10 shrub species, and 33 herb species. In the tropical and sub-tropical regions, Acacia catechu was the dominant tree while Ougeinia oojeinensis in the

  12. Ethnomedicinal and ecological status of plants in Garhwal Himalaya, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheikh Mehraj A

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The northern part of India harbours a great diversity of medicinal plants due to its distinct geography and ecological marginal conditions. The traditional medical systems of northern India are part of a time tested culture and honored still by people today. These traditional systems have been curing complex disease for more than 3,000 years. With rapidly growing demand for these medicinal plants, most of the plant populations have been depleted, indicating a lack of ecological knowledge among communities using the plants. Thus, an attempt was made in this study to focus on the ecological status of ethnomedicinal plants, to determine their availability in the growing sites, and to inform the communities about the sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants in the wild. Methods The ecological information regarding ethnomedicinal plants was collected in three different climatic regions (tropical, sub-tropical and temperate for species composition in different forest layers. The ecological information was assessed using the quadrate sampling method. A total of 25 quadrats, 10 × 10 m were laid out at random in order to sample trees and shrubs, and 40 quadrats of 1 × 1 m for herbaceous plants. In each climatic region, three vegetation sites were selected for ecological information; the mean values of density, basal cover, and the importance value index from all sites of each region were used to interpret the final data. Ethnomedicinal uses were collected from informants of adjacent villages. About 10% of inhabitants (older, experienced men and women were interviewed about their use of medicinal plants. A consensus analysis of medicinal plant use between the different populations was conducted. Results Across the different climatic regions a total of 57 species of plants were reported: 14 tree species, 10 shrub species, and 33 herb species. In the tropical and sub-tropical regions, Acacia catechu was the dominant tree while

  13. Baboquivari Mountain plants: Identification, ecology, and ethnobotany [Book Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosemary L. Pendleton

    2011-01-01

    The Sky Islands of southern Arizona and northwestern Mexico make up a region that is rich, both biologically and culturally. These isolated mountain ranges, separated by desert "seas," contain a unique and diverse flora and have long been home to indigenous peoples of the southwestern US. This book, Baboquivari Mountain Plants: Identification, Ecology, and...

  14. On the Use of the Guild Concept in Plant Ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kroon, Hans de; Olff, Han

    1995-01-01

    The original defmition of the guild is reiterated and the concept discussed and placed in the context of related concepts such as resources and competition. From this conceptual framework the current use of guilds in studies of plant community ecology is evaluated. We discuss the criteria with which

  15. A modelling framework for improving plant establishment during ecological restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plants seeded during ecological restoration projects often perish en masse, and researchers are currently searching for traits promoting increased survival. In this study of a big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata Nutt.) ecosystem, we found survivorship rankings of seeded grass species varied across 3...

  16. Reinforcing loose foundation stones in trait-based plant ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shipley, Bill; De Bello, Francesco; Cornelissen, J Hans C; Laliberté, Etienne; Laughlin, Daniel C; Reich, Peter B

    2016-04-01

    The promise of "trait-based" plant ecology is one of generalized prediction across organizational and spatial scales, independent of taxonomy. This promise is a major reason for the increased popularity of this approach. Here, we argue that some important foundational assumptions of trait-based ecology have not received sufficient empirical evaluation. We identify three such assumptions and, where possible, suggest methods of improvement: (i) traits are functional to the degree that they determine individual fitness, (ii) intraspecific variation in functional traits can be largely ignored, and (iii) functional traits show general predictive relationships to measurable environmental gradients.

  17. Ecological investigations at the Pantex Plant Site, 1992

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cushing, C.E.; Mazaika, R.R.; Phillips, R.C.

    1993-09-01

    In 1992, Pantex requested that Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) conduct a series of ecological surveys to provide baseline information for designing detailed ecological studies on the various ecosystems present at the Pantex plant site near Amarillo, Texas. To this end, PNL scientist and technicians visited the site at different times to conduct investigations and collect samples: July 6--13: birds, small mammals, general habitat assessment; August 10--14: wetland vegetation, birds, small mammals, Playa invertebrates; and September 7--11: birds, small mammals. This report presents the results of these three surveys

  18. Integral Indicator of Ecological Footprint for Croatian Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strijov, V.; Granic, G.; Juric, Z.; Jelavic, B.; Antesevic Maricic, S.

    2009-01-01

    The main goal of this paper is to present the methodology of construction of the Integral Indicator for Croatian Thermal Power Plants and Combined Heat and Power Plants. The Integral Indicator is necessary to compare Power Plants selected according to a certain criterion. The criterion of the Ecological Footprint is chosen. The following features of the Power Plants are used: generated electricity and heat; consumed coal and liquid fuel; sulphur content in fuel; emitted CO 2 , SO 2 , NO x and particles. To construct the Integral Indicator the linear model is used. The model parameters are tuned by the Principal Component Analysis algorithm. The constructed Integral Indicator is compared with several others, such as Pareto-Optimal Slicing Indicator and Metric Indicator. The Integral Indicator keeps as much information about features of the Power Plants as possible; it is simple and robust.(author).

  19. Socio/economic/ecological impacts of nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Golden, J.; Watson, J.

    1975-01-01

    A nuclear facility has both radiological and non-radiological effects on the environment. To minimize radiological effects, limits are set on releases of radioactive materials that will cause either direct or indirect exposure (such as the food chain). Exposure pathways for man and other organisms are described with comparisons of typical calculated doses and design objective doses. Non-radiological impacts of nuclear plants are classified as ecological-physical and socio/economic considerations, which include eighteen areas affected during each phase of the nuclear facility cycle. The ecological-physical environment is impacted in the areas of hydrology, terrestrial and aquatic ecology, and air and water quality. The socio-economic environment is impacted in areas of land use, tax base, employment, economic stimulus, relocation, lifestyle, demand for service, aesthetics, and power needs. Case studies of large construction projects are described in the appendix

  20. A systematic review of the recent ecological literature on cushion plants: champions of plant facilitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. M. Reid

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Cushion-forming plant species are found in alpine and polar environments around the world. They modify the microclimate, thereby facilitating other plant species. Similar to the effectiveness of shrubs as a means to study facilitation in arid and semi-arid environments, we explore the potential for cushion plant species to expand the generality of research on this contemporary ecological interaction. A systematic review was conducted to determine the number of publications and citation frequency on relevant ecological topics whilst using shrub literature as a baseline to assess relative importance of cushions as a focal point for future ecological research. Although there are forty times more shrub articles, mean citations per paper is comparable between cushion and shrub literature. Furthermore, the scope of ecological research topics studied using cushions is broad including facilitation, competition, environmental gradients, life history, genetics, reproduction, community, ecosystem and evolution. The preliminary ecological evidence to date also strongly suggests that cushion plants can be keystone species in their ecosystems. Hence, ecological research on net interactions including facilitation and patterns of diversity can be successfully examined using cushion plants, and this is particularly timely given expectations associated with a changing climate in these regions.

  1. Allocation, stress tolerance and carbon transport in plants: how does phloem physiology affect plant ecology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savage, Jessica A; Clearwater, Michael J; Haines, Dustin F; Klein, Tamir; Mencuccini, Maurizio; Sevanto, Sanna; Turgeon, Robert; Zhang, Cankui

    2016-04-01

    Despite the crucial role of carbon transport in whole plant physiology and its impact on plant-environment interactions and ecosystem function, relatively little research has tried to examine how phloem physiology impacts plant ecology. In this review, we highlight several areas of active research where inquiry into phloem physiology has increased our understanding of whole plant function and ecological processes. We consider how xylem-phloem interactions impact plant drought tolerance and reproduction, how phloem transport influences carbon allocation in trees and carbon cycling in ecosystems and how phloem function mediates plant relations with insects, pests, microbes and symbiotes. We argue that in spite of challenges that exist in studying phloem physiology, it is critical that we consider the role of this dynamic vascular system when examining the relationship between plants and their biotic and abiotic environment. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Communicative interactions involving plants: information, evolution, and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mescher, Mark C; Pearse, Ian S

    2016-08-01

    The role of information obtained via sensory cues and signals in mediating the interactions of organisms with their biotic and abiotic environments has been a major focus of work on sensory and behavioral ecology. Information-mediated interactions also have important implications for broader ecological patterns emerging at the community and ecosystem levels that are only now beginning to be explored. Given the extent to which plants dominate the sensory landscapes of terrestrial ecosystems, information-mediated interactions involving plants should be a major focus of efforts to elucidate these broader patterns. Here we explore how such efforts might be enhanced by a clear understanding of information itself-a central and potentially unifying concept in biology that has nevertheless been the subject of considerable confusion-and of its relationship to adaptive evolution and ecology. We suggest that information-mediated interactions should be a key focus of efforts to more fully integrate evolutionary biology and ecology. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Plant Ecological Strategies Shift Across the Cretaceous–Paleogene Boundary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blonder, Benjamin; Royer, Dana L.; Johnson, Kirk R.; Miller, Ian; Enquist, Brian J.

    2014-01-01

    The Chicxulub bolide impact caused the end-Cretaceous mass extinction of plants, but the associated selectivity and ecological effects are poorly known. Using a unique set of North Dakota leaf fossil assemblages spanning 2.2 Myr across the event, we show among angiosperms a reduction of ecological strategies and selection for fast-growth strategies consistent with a hypothesized recovery from an impact winter. Leaf mass per area (carbon investment) decreased in both mean and variance, while vein density (carbon assimilation rate) increased in mean, consistent with a shift towards “fast” growth strategies. Plant extinction from the bolide impact resulted in a shift in functional trait space that likely had broad consequences for ecosystem functioning. PMID:25225914

  4. An ecological interface design for BWR nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Monta, K.; Itoh, J.

    1992-01-01

    An ecological interface design was applied to realize the support function for the operator's direct perception and analytical reasoning in the development of an intelligent man-machine system for BWR nuclear power plants. The abstraction-aggregation functional hierarchy representation of the work domain is a base of the ecological interface design. Another base is the concept of the level of cognitive control. The former was mapped into the interface to externalize the operator's normative mental model of the plants, which will reduce his/her cognitive work load and support knowledge-based problem solving. In addition, the same framework can be used for the analytical evaluation of man-machine interfaces. The information content and structure of a prototype interface were evaluated. This approach seems promising from these experiences. (author)

  5. On the Use of the Guild Concept in Plant Ecology

    OpenAIRE

    Kroon, Hans de; Olff, Han

    1995-01-01

    The original defmition of the guild is reiterated and the concept discussed and placed in the context of related concepts such as resources and competition. From this conceptual framework the current use of guilds in studies of plant community ecology is evaluated. We discuss the criteria with which species are assigned to guilds, the association of guilds with specific communities, the resource classes on which guilds are based, and the competitive relationships between species of a guild. W...

  6. The evolution of ethylene signaling in plant chemical ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groen, Simon C; Whiteman, Noah K

    2014-07-01

    Ethylene is a key hormone in plant development, mediating plant responses to abiotic environmental stress, and interactions with attackers and mutualists. Here, we provide a synthesis of the role of ethylene in the context of plant ecology and evolution, and a prospectus for future research in this area. We focus on the regulatory function of ethylene in multi-organismal interactions. In general, plant interactions with different types of organisms lead to reduced or enhanced levels of ethylene. This in turn affects not only the plant's response to the interacting organism at hand, but also to other organisms in the community. These community-level effects become observable as enhanced or diminished relationships with future commensals, and systemic resistance or susceptibility to secondary attackers. Ongoing comparative genomic and phenotypic analyses continue to shed light on these interactions. These studies have revealed that plants and interacting organisms from separate kingdoms of life have independently evolved the ability to produce, perceive, and respond to ethylene. This signature of convergent evolution of ethylene signaling at the phenotypic level highlights the central role ethylene metabolism and signaling plays in plant interactions with microbes and animals.

  7. Demography and ecology of nuclear power plant location

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stefanescu, P.; Ghitescu, P.

    1997-01-01

    To select and licence a NPP site, as well as, once built, to run it, both demography and ecology of the geographical zone are crucial factors to take into account. On the other side the location and running of a NPP is a major factor in the economic and social development of NPP site surroundings. Meanwhile the population distribution around the NPP site has a determining role on intervention and rehabilitation plans. Risk and danger studies should be done for initial situation as well as during NPP running. The character of radioactive risks and the importance of possible consequences of a hypothetical nuclear accident which could affect a big Nuclear Power Plant request a special attention to population distribution around the plant site and surroundings. Therefore safety studies to locate and licence a site should refer to demography and ecology. Available data examination will permit to locate NPP in less-populated and ecologically not-concerning zones. On-site investigation should identify the population groups to watch for in order to estimate the results of a normal evaluation. The inquires will give reference primary data before NPP construction starts. Also they evaluate the possibility of short term population retain on location in case of an accident. (authors)

  8. Central receiver power plant: an environmental, ecological, and socioeconomic analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davison, M.; Grether, D.

    1977-06-01

    The technical details of the central receiver design are reviewed. Socio-economic questions are considered including: market penetration, air industrial sector model, demands on industry, employment, effluents associated with manufacture of components, strains due to intensive construction, water requirements, and land requirements. The ecological effects in the vicinity of the central receiver plant site are dealt with, with emphasis on effects on land surface, mammals, and reptiles and amphibians. Climatological considerations are reviewed including: desert types, effects of surface albedo modification, effects of aerosols, effects on evaporation rates, the heliostat canopy, effects on turbulent transfer rates, effects on the wind profile, a model of convection about a central receiver plant, and a global scenario. Drawings of heliostat and plant design are included in appendices. (MHR)

  9. A global Fine-Root Ecology Database to address below-ground challenges in plant ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iversen, Colleen M; McCormack, M Luke; Powell, A Shafer; Blackwood, Christopher B; Freschet, Grégoire T; Kattge, Jens; Roumet, Catherine; Stover, Daniel B; Soudzilovskaia, Nadejda A; Valverde-Barrantes, Oscar J; van Bodegom, Peter M; Violle, Cyrille

    2017-07-01

    Variation and tradeoffs within and among plant traits are increasingly being harnessed by empiricists and modelers to understand and predict ecosystem processes under changing environmental conditions. While fine roots play an important role in ecosystem functioning, fine-root traits are underrepresented in global trait databases. This has hindered efforts to analyze fine-root trait variation and link it with plant function and environmental conditions at a global scale. This Viewpoint addresses the need for a centralized fine-root trait database, and introduces the Fine-Root Ecology Database (FRED, http://roots.ornl.gov) which so far includes > 70 000 observations encompassing a broad range of root traits and also includes associated environmental data. FRED represents a critical step toward improving our understanding of below-ground plant ecology. For example, FRED facilitates the quantification of variation in fine-root traits across root orders, species, biomes, and environmental gradients while also providing a platform for assessments of covariation among root, leaf, and wood traits, the role of fine roots in ecosystem functioning, and the representation of fine roots in terrestrial biosphere models. Continued input of observations into FRED to fill gaps in trait coverage will improve our understanding of changes in fine-root traits across space and time. © 2017 UT-Battelle LLC. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  10. Population and community ecology of the rare plant amsinckia grandiflora

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlsen, T.M.

    1996-11-01

    Research was conducted between the fall of 1992 and the spring on the population and community ecology of the rare annual plant, Amsinckia glandiflora (Gray) Kleeb. ex Greene (Boraginaceae). The research goal was to investigate the causes of the species rarity, data useful to restorative efforts. The work focused on the examination of competitive suppression by exotic annual grasses; comparisons with common, weedy congener; and the role of litter cover and seed germination and seedling establishment. Annual exotic grasses reduced A. grandiflora reproductive output to a greater extent than did the native perennial bunch grass.

  11. Chemical ecology of insect-plant interactions: ecological significance of plant secondary metabolites.

    OpenAIRE

    Nishida, Ritsuo

    2014-01-01

    Plants produce a diverse array of secondary metabolites as chemical barriers against herbivores. Many phytophagous insects are highly adapted to these allelochemicals and use such unique substances as the specific host-finding cues, defensive substances of their own, and even as sex pheromones or their precursors by selectively sensing, incorporating, and/or processing these phytochemicals. Insects also serve as pollinators often effectively guided by specific floral fragrances. This review d...

  12. Ecological implications of plants ability to tell the time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resco, Víctor; Hartwell, James; Hall, Anthony

    2009-06-01

    The circadian clock (the endogenous mechanism that anticipates diurnal cycles) acts as a central coordinator of plant activity. At the molecular and organism level, it regulates key traits for plant fitness, including seed germination, gas exchange, growth and flowering, among others. In this article, we explore current evidence on the effect of the clock for the scales of interest to ecologists. We begin by synthesizing available knowledge on the effect of the clock on biosphere-atmosphere interactions and observe that, at least in the systems where it has been tested, the clock regulates gas exchange from the leaf to the ecosystem level, and we discuss its implications for estimates of the carbon balance. Then, we analyse whether incorporating the action of the clock may help in elucidating the effects of climate change on plant distributions. Circadian rhythms are involved in regulating the range of temperatures a species can survive and affects plant interactions. Finally, we review the involvement of the clock in key phenological events, such as flowering time and seed germination. Because the clock may act as a common mechanism affecting many of the diverse branches of ecology, our ultimate goal is to stimulate further research into this pressing, yet unexplored, topic.

  13. Reinforcing loose foundation stones in trait-based plant ecology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Shipley, B.; de Bello, Francesco; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Lariberté, E.; Laughlin, D. C.; Reich, P. B.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 180, č. 4 (2016), s. 923-931 ISSN 0029-8549 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : Comparative ecology * Functional ecology * Intraspecific variation Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.130, year: 2016

  14. Management, use and ecology of medicinal plants in the degraded dry lands of Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hizikias, E.B.; Aynekulu, E.; Mekuria, W.; Endale, D.

    2011-01-01

    An ethnomedicinal study was conducted to document the indigenous medicinal plant knowledge on the management, use, and ecology of locally important medicinal plants in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia. Ethnobotanical data were collected from 250 people, using semi-structured questionnaires, field

  15. Ecological status and traditional knowledge of medicinal plants in Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary of Garhwal Himalaya, India

    OpenAIRE

    Bhat Jahangeer A; Kumar Munesh; Bussmann Rainer W

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Background Himalayan forests are the most important source of medicinal plants and with useful species for the local people. Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary (KWLS) is situated in the interior part of the Garhwal Himalayan region. The presented study was carried out in Madhmeshwar area of KWLS for the ecological status of medicinal plants and further focused on the ethnomedicinal uses of these plants in the study area. Methods Ecological information about ethnomedicinal plants were colle...

  16. Getting the ecology into interactions between plants and the plant growth-promoting bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hol, W H Gera; Bezemer, T Martijn; Biere, Arjen

    2013-01-01

    Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are increasingly appreciated for their contributions to primary productivity through promotion of growth and triggering of induced systemic resistance in plants. Here we focus on the beneficial effects of one particular species of PGPR (Pseudomonas fluorescens) on plants through induced plant defense. This model organism has provided much understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms of PGPR-induced plant defense. However, this knowledge can only be appreciated at full value once we know to what extent these mechanisms also occur under more realistic, species-diverse conditions as are occurring in the plant rhizosphere. To provide the necessary ecological context, we review the literature to compare the effect of P. fluorescens on induced plant defense when it is present as a single species or in combination with other soil dwelling species. Specifically, we discuss combinations with other plant mutualists (bacterial or fungal), plant pathogens (bacterial or fungal), bacterivores (nematode or protozoa), and decomposers. Synergistic interactions between P. fluorescens and other plant mutualists are much more commonly reported than antagonistic interactions. Recent developments have enabled screenings of P. fluorescens genomes for defense traits and this could help with selection of strains with likely positive interactions on biocontrol. However, studies that examine the effects of multiple herbivores, pathogens, or herbivores and pathogens together on the effectiveness of PGPR to induce plant defenses are underrepresented and we are not aware of any study that has examined interactions between P. fluorescens and bacterivores or decomposers. As co-occurring soil organisms can enhance but also reduce the effectiveness of PGPR, a better understanding of the biotic factors modulating P. fluorescens-plant interactions will improve the effectiveness of introducing P. fluorescens to enhance plant production and defense.

  17. Ecological impacts and damage - comparison of selected components for nuclear and conventional power plants (example of Mochovce nuclear power plant)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bucek, M.

    1984-01-01

    A comparison is given of ecological damage for the nuclear power plant in Mochovce and a conventional power plant with the same power. Ecological effects and damage are divided into three groups: comparable damage, ecological damage caused only by conventional power plants and ecological damage caused only by nuclear power plants. In the first group the factors compared are land requisition, consumption of utility water and air consumption. In the second group are enumerated losses of crops (cereals, sugar beet, potatoes, oleaginous plants) and losses caused by increased disease rate owing to polluted environment by conventional power plants. In the third group health hazards are assessed linked with ionizing radiation. Also considered are vent stack escapes. (E.S.)

  18. The Analysis of Sustainable Development Content in the Syllabus of Environmental Knowledge and Plants Ecology Lecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putra, A.; Rahmat, A.; Redjeki, S.

    2017-09-01

    This research aims to find out how much the content of sustainable development exist in the content of environmental knowledge and plant ecology courses. The focus indicators of sustainable development indicators is the environment. This research is a qualitative research type with qualitative descriptive approach. The analyzed variables are only 2 courses, which are environmental knowledge and plants ecology. The results showed that the syllabus contents analysis of environmental knowledge and plants ecology courses in private Lembaga Pendidikan Tenaga Kependidikan (LPTK) in the province of Nusa Tenggara Barat is already good enough and the sustainable development contents is very large, almost all syllabus contents has already prioritize the sustainable development load of both the subject of environmental knowledge and plants ecology, although there are still some syllabus contents that was not includes sustainable development load, but the percentage is quite small, especially in the course of Plant Ecology.

  19. The evolutionary ecology of clonally propagated domesticated plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKey, Doyle; Elias, Marianne; Pujol, Benoît; Duputié, Anne

    2010-04-01

    While seed-propagated crops have contributed many evolutionary insights, evolutionary biologists have often neglected clonally propagated crops. We argue that widespread notions about their evolution under domestication are oversimplified, and that they offer rich material for evolutionary studies. The diversity of their wild ancestors, the diverse ecologies of the crop populations themselves, and the intricate mix of selection pressures, acting not only on the parts harvested but also on the parts used by humans to make clonal propagules, result in complex and diverse evolutionary trajectories under domestication. We examine why farmers propagate some plants clonally, and discuss the evolutionary dynamics of sexual reproduction in clonal crops. We explore how their mixed clonal/sexual reproductive systems function, based on the sole example studied in detail, cassava (Manihot esculenta). Biotechnology is now expanding the number of clonal crops, continuing the 10 000-yr-old trend to increase crop yields by propagating elite genotypes. In an era of rapid global change, it is more important than ever to understand how the adaptive potential of clonal crops can be maintained. A key component of strategies for preserving this adaptive potential is the maintenance of mixed clonal/sexual systems, which can be achieved by encouraging and valuing farmer knowledge about the sexual reproductive biology of their clonal crops.

  20. State of the science and challenges of breeding landscape plants with ecological function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilde, H Dayton; Gandhi, Kamal J K; Colson, Gregory

    2015-01-01

    Exotic plants dominate esthetically-managed landscapes, which cover 30–40 million hectares in the United States alone. Recent ecological studies have found that landscaping with exotic plant species can reduce biodiversity on multiple trophic levels. To support biodiversity in urbanized areas, the increased use of native landscaping plants has been advocated by conservation groups and US federal and state agencies. A major challenge to scaling up the use of native species in landscaping is providing ornamental plants that are both ecologically functional and economically viable. Depending on ecological and economic constraints, accelerated breeding approaches could be applied to ornamental trait development in native plants. This review examines the impact of landscaping choices on biodiversity, the current status of breeding and selection of native ornamental plants, and the interdisciplinary research needed to scale up landscaping plants that can support native biodiversity. PMID:26504560

  1. Nutritional and cultural aspects of plant species selection for a controlled ecological life support system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoff, J. E.; Howe, J. M.; Mitchell, C. A.

    1982-01-01

    The feasibility of using higher plants in a controlled ecological life support system is discussed. Aspects of this system considered important in the use of higher plants include: limited energy, space, and mass, and problems relating to cultivation and management of plants, food processing, the psychological impact of vegetarian diets, and plant propagation. A total of 115 higher plant species are compared based on 21 selection criteria.

  2. Constraints imposed by pollinator behaviour on the ecology and evolution of plant mating systems

    OpenAIRE

    Devaux, Christian; Lepers, C.; Porcher, E.

    2014-01-01

    Most flowering plants rely on pollinators for their reproduction. Plant-pollinator interactions, although mutualistic, involve an inherent conflict of interest between both partners and may constrain plant mating systems at multiple levels: the immediate ecological plant selfing rates, their distribution in and contribution to pollination networks, and their evolution. Here, we review experimental evidence that pollinator behaviour influences plant selfing rates in pairs of interacting specie...

  3. Non-linear effects of drought under shade: reconciling physiological and ecological models in plant communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Holmgren, M.; Gomez-Aparicio, L.; Quero, J.L.; Valladares, F.

    2012-01-01

    The combined effects of shade and drought on plant performance and the implications for species interactions are highly debated in plant ecology. Empirical evidence for positive and negative effects of shade on the performance of plants under dry conditions supports two contrasting theoretical

  4. Inducible indirect defence of plants : from mechanisms to ecological functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.; Poecke, van R.M.P.; Boer, de J.G.

    2003-01-01

    Inducible defences allow plants to be phenotypically plastic. Inducible indirect defence of plants by attracting carnivorous enemies of herbivorous arthropods can vary with plant species and genotype, with herbivore species or instar and potentially with other environmental conditions. So far,

  5. Chemicals on plant surfaces as a heretofore unrecognized, but ecologically informative, class for investigations into plant defence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LoPresti, Eric F

    2016-11-01

    Plants produce and utilize a great diversity of chemicals for a variety of physiological and ecological purposes. Many of these chemicals defend plants against herbivores, pathogens and competitors. The location of these chemicals varies within the plant, some are located entirely within plant tissues, others exist in the air- (or water-) space around plants, and still others are secreted onto plant surfaces as exudates. I argue herein that the location of a given defensive chemical has profound implications for its ecological function; specifically, I focus on the characteristics of chemical defences secreted onto plant surfaces. Drawing from a broad literature encompassing ecology, evolution, taxonomy and physiology, I found that these external chemical defences (ECDs) are common and widespread in plants and algae; hundreds of examples have been detailed, yet they are not delineated as a separate class from internal chemical defences (ICDs). I propose a novel typology for ECDs and, using existing literature, explore the ecological consequences of the hypothesized unique characteristics of ECDs. The axis of total or proportional investment in ECDs versus ICDs should be considered as one axis of investment by a plant, in the same way as quantitative versus qualitative chemical defences or induced versus constitutive defences is considered. The ease of manipulating ECDs in many plant systems presents a powerful tool to help test plant defence theory (e.g. optimal defence). The framework outlined here integrates various disciplines of botany and ecology and suggests a need for further examinations of exudates in a variety of contexts, as well as recognition of the effects of within-plant localization of defences. © 2015 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  6. Introduction to the Special Issue: Beyond traits: integrating behaviour into plant ecology and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cahill, James F

    2015-10-26

    The way that plants are conceptualized in the context of ecological understanding is changing. In one direction, a reductionist school is pulling plants apart into a list of measured 'traits', from which ecological function and outcomes of species interactions may be inferred. This special issue offers an alternative, and more holistic, view: that the ecological functions performed by a plant will be a consequence not only of their complement of traits but also of the ways in which their component parts are used in response to environmental and social conditions. This is the realm of behavioural ecology, a field that has greatly advanced our understanding of animal biology, ecology and evolution. Included in this special issue are 10 articles focussing not on the tried and true metaphor that plant growth is similar to animal movement, but instead on how application of principles from animal behaviour can improve our ability to understand plant biology and ecology. The goals are not to draw false parallels, nor to anthropomorphize plant biology, but instead to demonstrate how existing and robust theory based on fundamental principles can provide novel understanding for plants. Key to this approach is the recognition that behaviour and intelligence are not the same. Many organisms display complex behaviours despite a lack of cognition (as it is traditionally understood) or any hint of a nervous system. The applicability of behavioural concepts to plants is further enhanced with the realization that all organisms face the same harsh forces of natural selection in the context of finding resources, mates and coping with neighbours. As these ecological realities are often highly variable in space and time, it is not surprising that all organisms-even plants-exhibit complex behaviours to handle this variability. The articles included here address diverse topics in behavioural ecology, as applied to plants: general conceptual understanding, plant nutrient foraging, root

  7. Study on remote sensing method for drawing up and utilizing ecological and natural map II; concentrated on drawing up a plant ecological classification map

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeon, Seong Woo; Chung, Hwui Chul [Korea Environment Institute, Seoul (Korea)

    1999-12-01

    Following with the flows of the environmental conservation, Korea has revised the law of natural environmental conservation. In this law, it has suggested to draw up an ecological nature figure for efficient preservation and utilization of a country. To draw up an ecological nature figure, it requires several evaluating factors. Among them, a plant ecological classification is a very important evaluating factor since it can evaluate a habitation area of natural organisms. This study investigated a drawing up method of plant ecological classification using satellite image data. However the limit of satellite image data and the quality of required plant ecological classification are not quite matched but if the satellite image data and the infrared color aerial photograph are mixed, it can be expected to have an excellent quality of plant ecological classification. 85 refs., 86 figs., 45 tabs.

  8. Ecological plant epigenetics: Evidence from model and non-model species, and the way forward.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Christina L; Alonso, Conchita; Becker, Claude; Bossdorf, Oliver; Bucher, Etienne; Colomé-Tatché, Maria; Durka, Walter; Engelhardt, Jan; Gaspar, Bence; Gogol-Döring, Andreas; Grosse, Ivo; van Gurp, Thomas P; Heer, Katrin; Kronholm, Ilkka; Lampei, Christian; Latzel, Vít; Mirouze, Marie; Opgenoorth, Lars; Paun, Ovidiu; Prohaska, Sonja J; Rensing, Stefan A; Stadler, Peter F; Trucchi, Emiliano; Ullrich, Kristian; Verhoeven, Koen J F

    2017-12-01

    Growing evidence shows that epigenetic mechanisms contribute to complex traits, with implications across many fields of biology. In plant ecology, recent studies have attempted to merge ecological experiments with epigenetic analyses to elucidate the contribution of epigenetics to plant phenotypes, stress responses, adaptation to habitat, and range distributions. While there has been some progress in revealing the role of epigenetics in ecological processes, studies with non-model species have so far been limited to describing broad patterns based on anonymous markers of DNA methylation. In contrast, studies with model species have benefited from powerful genomic resources, which contribute to a more mechanistic understanding but have limited ecological realism. Understanding the significance of epigenetics for plant ecology requires increased transfer of knowledge and methods from model species research to genomes of evolutionarily divergent species, and examination of responses to complex natural environments at a more mechanistic level. This requires transforming genomics tools specifically for studying non-model species, which is challenging given the large and often polyploid genomes of plants. Collaboration among molecular geneticists, ecologists and bioinformaticians promises to enhance our understanding of the mutual links between genome function and ecological processes. © 2017 The Authors. Ecology Letters published by CNRS and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction shape the life history of an iteroparous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Tom E X; Tenhumberg, Brigitte; Louda, Svata M

    2008-02-01

    Plant reproduction yields immediate fitness benefits but can be costly in terms of survival, growth, and future fecundity. Life-history theory posits that reproductive strategies are shaped by trade-offs between current and future fitness that result from these direct costs of reproduction. Plant reproduction may also incur indirect ecological costs if it increases susceptibility to herbivores. Yet ecological costs of reproduction have received little empirical attention and remain poorly integrated into life-history theory. Here, we provide evidence for herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction, and we develop theory to examine how these costs influence plant life-history strategies. Field experiments with an iteroparous cactus (Opuntia imbricata) indicated that greater reproductive effort (proportion of meristems allocated to reproduction) led to greater attack by a cactus-feeding insect (Narnia pallidicornis) and that damage by this herbivore reduced reproductive success. A dynamic programming model predicted strongly divergent optimal reproductive strategies when ecological costs were included, compared with when these costs were ignored. Meristem allocation by cacti in the field matched the optimal strategy expected under ecological costs of reproduction. The results indicate that plant reproductive allocation can strongly influence the intensity of interactions with herbivores and that associated ecological costs can play an important selective role in the evolution of plant life histories.

  10. Nurse plant theory and its application in ecological restoration in lower subtropics of China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hai Ren; Long Yang; Nan Liu

    2008-01-01

    Nurse plants are those that facilitate the growth and development of other plant species (target species) beneath their canopy because they offer benign microhabitats that are more favorable for seed germination and/or seedling recruitment than their surrounding envi-ronment. Nurse plants have been mainly used to restore vegetation in arid and sub-arid zones in recent years. Based on summarizing the definition of nurse plant and target plant, we review the nursing effect mechanisms, ecological factors that influence nursing effect, relationships between nurse plant and ecological restoration. This review also brings forward possible pairs of nurse and target species at lower subtropical areas. Furthermore, we provide the potential tendency in nurse plant research and application.

  11. Ecological aspects of decommissioning of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oskolkov, B.Ya.; Nosovskij, A.V.

    2001-01-01

    During the development of Design of ChNPP Decommissioning, it is necessary to consider all the real ecological conditions of its existence and, taking into account the economic potential, to define the achievable and expedient final result, i.e. the final ecological goal. The final goal of ChNPP decommissioning from the point of view of ecology is the termination of the unfavorable influence of the object on the ecosystem of the location area and renovation of the natural conditions of the environment up to the starting level, i.e. like it was prior to the NPP construction or to the level of accepted for the society at present considering the minimization of the problems for the future generations. For the Chornobyl NPP this result is practically unachievable

  12. Dewpoint - unstudied factor in ecology, physiology and plant introduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prokhorov Alexey

    2015-12-01

    Study of the mechanism of the condensation of atmospheric moisture on the surface of the plant and allow for modification of plant breeding with pronounced effect and reduce the temperature dependence on the least insolation. Such plants could be beneficial in reducing costs for irrigation of crops, and in the fight against desertification. The study of the mechanism of the phenomenon, allow for modification and selection of plants with the most pronounced effect of lowering the temperature and the lowest dependent on insolation. The plants, which are more efficient moisture capacitors can bring huge benefits in reducing costs for irrigation of crops, and in the fight against desertification.

  13. Mechanisms and ecological implications of plant-mediated interactions between belowground and aboveground insect herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Papadopoulou, G.V.; Dam, N.M. van

    2017-01-01

    Plant-mediated interactions between belowground (BG) and aboveground (AG) herbivores have received increasing interest recently. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying ecological consequences of BG–AG interactions are not fully clear yet. Herbivore-induced plant defenses are complex and

  14. The relative importance of rapid evolution for plant-microbe interactions depends on ecological context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terhorst, Casey P; Lennon, Jay T; Lau, Jennifer A

    2014-06-22

    Evolution can occur on ecological time-scales, affecting community and ecosystem processes. However, the importance of evolutionary change relative to ecological processes remains largely unknown. Here, we analyse data from a long-term experiment in which we allowed plant populations to evolve for three generations in dry or wet soils and used a reciprocal transplant to compare the ecological effect of drought and the effect of plant evolutionary responses to drought on soil microbial communities and nutrient availability. Plants that evolved under drought tended to support higher bacterial and fungal richness, and increased fungal : bacterial ratios in the soil. Overall, the magnitudes of ecological and evolutionary effects on microbial communities were similar; however, the strength and direction of these effects depended on the context in which they were measured. For example, plants that evolved in dry environments increased bacterial abundance in dry contemporary environments, but decreased bacterial abundance in wet contemporary environments. Our results suggest that interactions between recent evolutionary history and ecological context affect both the direction and magnitude of plant effects on soil microbes. Consequently, an eco-evolutionary perspective is required to fully understand plant-microbe interactions.

  15. Closing the gap between plant ecology and Quaternary palaeoecology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Reitalu, T.; Kuneš, Petr; Giesecke, T.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 25, č. 5 (2014), s. 1188-1194 ISSN 1100-9233 EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 278065 - LONGWOOD Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : functional diversity * historical ecology * landscape reconstruction * palaeobotany Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.709, year: 2014

  16. Biological, ecological and agronomic significance of plant phenolic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Our understanding of some phenolic compounds in the last few decades has greatly improved. However, their biological, ecological and agronomical significance in the rhizosphere of most symbiotic legumes is much less clear. Further understanding of these biomolecules will increase our knowledge of their contribution in ...

  17. Towards a thesaurus of plant characteristics: : an ecological contribution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Garnier, Eric; Stahl, Ulrike; Laporte, Marie Angélique; Kattge, Jens; Mougenot, Isabelle; Kühn, Ingolf; Laporte, Baptiste; Amiaud, Bernard; Ahrestani, Farshid S.; Bönisch, Gerhard; Bunker, Daniel E.; Cornelissen, J. Hans C.; Díaz, Sandra; Enquist, Brian J.; Gachet, Sophie; Jaureguiberry, Pedro; Kleyer, Michael; Lavorel, Sandra; Maicher, Lutz; Pérez-Harguindeguy, Natalia; Poorter, Hendrik; Schildhauer, Mark; Shipley, Bill; Violle, Cyrille; Weiher, Evan; Wirth, Christian; Wright, Ian J.; Klotz, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    Ecological research produces a tremendous amount of data, but the diversity in scales and topics covered and the ways in which studies are carried out result in large numbers of small, idiosyncratic data sets using heterogeneous terminologies. Such heterogeneity can be attributed, in part, to a lack

  18. Ecological status and traditional knowledge of medicinal plants in Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary of Garhwal Himalaya, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Himalayan forests are the most important source of medicinal plants and with useful species for the local people. Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary (KWLS) is situated in the interior part of the Garhwal Himalayan region. The presented study was carried out in Madhmeshwar area of KWLS for the ecological status of medicinal plants and further focused on the ethnomedicinal uses of these plants in the study area. Methods Ecological information about ethnomedicinal plants were collected using random quadrats in a random sampling technique along an altitudinal gradient in the KWLS. Information on medicinal properties of plants encountered in the present study was generated by questionnaire survey and was also compared with relevant literature. Results A total of 152 medicinally important plant species were reported, in which 103 were found herbs, 32 shrubs and 17 were tree species which represented 123 genera of 61 families. A total of 18 plant species fell into the rare, endangered (critically endangered) and vulnerable status categories. Conclusion The present study documented the traditional uses of medicinal plants, their ecological status and importance of these plants in the largest protected area of Garhwal Himalaya. This study can serve as baseline information on medicinal plants and could be helpful to further strengthen the conservation of this important resource. PMID:23281594

  19. The fascinating facets of plant selenium accumulation - biochemistry, physiology, evolution and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiavon, Michela; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H

    2017-03-01

    Contents 1582 I. 1582 II. 1583 III. 1588 IV. 1590 V. 1592 1592 References 1592 SUMMARY: The importance of selenium (Se) for medicine, industry and the environment is increasingly apparent. Se is essential for many species, including humans, but toxic at elevated concentrations. Plant Se accumulation and volatilization may be applied in crop biofortification and phytoremediation. Topics covered here include beneficial and toxic effects of Se on plants, mechanisms of Se accumulation and tolerance in plants and algae, Se hyperaccumulation, and ecological and evolutionary aspects of these processes. Plant species differ in the concentration and forms of Se accumulated, Se partitioning at the whole-plant and tissue levels, and the capacity to distinguish Se from sulfur. Mechanisms of Se hyperaccumulation and its adaptive significance appear to involve constitutive up-regulation of sulfate/selenate uptake and assimilation, associated with elevated concentrations of defense-related hormones. Hyperaccumulation has evolved independently in at least three plant families, probably as an elemental defense mechanism and perhaps mediating elemental allelopathy. Elevated plant Se protects plants from generalist herbivores and pathogens, but also gives rise to the evolution of Se-resistant specialists. Plant Se accumulation affects ecological interactions with herbivores, pollinators, neighboring plants, and microbes. Hyperaccumulation tends to negatively affect Se-sensitive ecological partners while facilitating Se-resistant partners, potentially affecting species composition and Se cycling in seleniferous ecosystems. © 2016 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. Constraints imposed by pollinator behaviour on the ecology and evolution of plant mating systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devaux, C; Lepers, C; Porcher, E

    2014-07-01

    Most flowering plants rely on pollinators for their reproduction. Plant-pollinator interactions, although mutualistic, involve an inherent conflict of interest between both partners and may constrain plant mating systems at multiple levels: the immediate ecological plant selfing rates, their distribution in and contribution to pollination networks, and their evolution. Here, we review experimental evidence that pollinator behaviour influences plant selfing rates in pairs of interacting species, and that plants can modify pollinator behaviour through plastic and evolutionary changes in floral traits. We also examine how theoretical studies include pollinators, implicitly or explicitly, to investigate the role of their foraging behaviour in plant mating system evolution. In doing so, we call for more evolutionary models combining ecological and genetic factors, and additional experimental data, particularly to describe pollinator foraging behaviour. Finally, we show that recent developments in ecological network theory help clarify the impact of community-level interactions on plant selfing rates and their evolution and suggest new research avenues to expand the study of mating systems of animal-pollinated plant species to the level of the plant-pollinator networks. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2014 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  1. Ecological status and traditional knowledge of medicinal plants in Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary of Garhwal Himalaya, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhat, Jahangeer A; Kumar, Munesh; Bussmann, Rainer W

    2013-01-02

    Himalayan forests are the most important source of medicinal plants and with useful species for the local people. Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary (KWLS) is situated in the interior part of the Garhwal Himalayan region. The presented study was carried out in Madhmeshwar area of KWLS for the ecological status of medicinal plants and further focused on the ethnomedicinal uses of these plants in the study area. Ecological information about ethnomedicinal plants were collected using random quadrats in a random sampling technique along an altitudinal gradient in the KWLS. Information on medicinal properties of plants encountered in the present study was generated by questionnaire survey and was also compared with relevant literature. A total of 152 medicinally important plant species were reported, in which 103 were found herbs, 32 shrubs and 17 were tree species which represented 123 genera of 61 families. A total of 18 plant species fell into the rare, endangered (critically endangered) and vulnerable status categories. The present study documented the traditional uses of medicinal plants, their ecological status and importance of these plants in the largest protected area of Garhwal Himalaya. This study can serve as baseline information on medicinal plants and could be helpful to further strengthen the conservation of this important resource.

  2. Ecological status and traditional knowledge of medicinal plants in Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary of Garhwal Himalaya, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhat Jahangeer A

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Himalayan forests are the most important source of medicinal plants and with useful species for the local people. Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary (KWLS is situated in the interior part of the Garhwal Himalayan region. The presented study was carried out in Madhmeshwar area of KWLS for the ecological status of medicinal plants and further focused on the ethnomedicinal uses of these plants in the study area. Methods Ecological information about ethnomedicinal plants were collected using random quadrats in a random sampling technique along an altitudinal gradient in the KWLS. Information on medicinal properties of plants encountered in the present study was generated by questionnaire survey and was also compared with relevant literature. Results A total of 152 medicinally important plant species were reported, in which 103 were found herbs, 32 shrubs and 17 were tree species which represented 123 genera of 61 families. A total of 18 plant species fell into the rare, endangered (critically endangered and vulnerable status categories. Conclusion The present study documented the traditional uses of medicinal plants, their ecological status and importance of these plants in the largest protected area of Garhwal Himalaya. This study can serve as baseline information on medicinal plants and could be helpful to further strengthen the conservation of this important resource.

  3. Ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ternjej, Ivancica; Mihaljevic, Zlatko

    2017-10-01

    Ecology is a science that studies the mutual interactions between organisms and their environment. The fundamental subject of interest in ecology is the individual. Topics of interest to ecologists include the diversity, distribution and number of particular organisms, as well as cooperation and competition between organisms, both within and among ecosystems. Today, ecology is a multidisciplinary science. This is particularly true when the subject of interest is the ecosystem or biosphere, which requires the knowledge and input of biologists, chemists, physicists, geologists, geographists, climatologists, hydrologists and many other experts. Ecology is applied in a science of restoration, repairing disturbed sites through human intervention, in natural resource management, and in environmental impact assessments.

  4. Frontiers for research on the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria: fundamentals for sustainability: Challenges in Bacterial Molecular Plant Pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Cindy E; Barny, Marie-Anne; Berge, Odile; Kinkel, Linda L; Lacroix, Christelle

    2017-02-01

    Methods to ensure the health of crops owe their efficacy to the extent to which we understand the ecology and biology of environmental microorganisms and the conditions under which their interactions with plants lead to losses in crop quality or yield. However, in the pursuit of this knowledge, notions of the ecology of plant-pathogenic microorganisms have been reduced to a plant-centric and agro-centric focus. With increasing global change, i.e. changes that encompass not only climate, but also biodiversity, the geographical distribution of biomes, human demographic and socio-economic adaptations and land use, new plant health problems will emerge via a range of processes influenced by these changes. Hence, knowledge of the ecology of plant pathogens will play an increasingly important role in the anticipation and response to disease emergence. Here, we present our opinion on the major challenges facing the study of the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria. We argue that the discovery of markedly novel insights into the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria is most likely to happen within a framework of more extensive scales of space, time and biotic interactions than those that currently guide much of the research on these bacteria. This will set a context that is more propitious for the discovery of unsuspected drivers of the survival and diversification of plant-pathogenic bacteria and of the factors most critical for disease emergence, and will set the foundation for new approaches to the sustainable management of plant health. We describe the contextual background of, justification for and specific research questions with regard to the following challenges: Development of terminology to describe plant-bacterial relationships in terms of bacterial fitness. Definition of the full scope of the environments in which plant-pathogenic bacteria reside or survive. Delineation of pertinent phylogenetic contours of plant-pathogenic bacteria and naming of strains

  5. Plant selenium hyperaccumulation- Ecological effects and potential implications for selenium cycling and community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, R Jason B; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H

    2018-04-25

    Selenium (Se) hyperaccumulation occurs in ~50 plant taxa native to seleniferous soils in Western USA. Hyperaccumulator tissue Se levels, 1000-15,000 mg/kg dry weight, are typically 100 times higher than surrounding vegetation. Relative to other species, hyperaccumulators also transform Se more into organic forms. We review abiotic and biotic factors influencing soil Se distribution and bioavailability, soil being the source of the Se in hyperaccumulators. Next, we summarize the fate of Se in plants, particularly hyperaccumulators. We then extensively review the impact of plant Se accumulation on ecological interactions. Finally, we discuss the potential impact of Se hyperaccumulators on local community composition and Se cycling. Selenium (hyper)accumulation offers ecological advantages: protection from herbivores and pathogens and competitive advantage over other plants. The extreme Se levels in and around hyperaccumulators create a toxic environment for Se-sensitive ecological partners, while offering a niche for Se-resistant partners. Through these dual effects, hyperaccumulators may influence species composition in their local environment, as well as Se cycling. The implied effects of Se hyperaccumulation on community assembly and local Se cycling warrant further investigations into the contribution of hyperaccumulators and general terrestrial vegetation to global Se cycling and may serve as a case study for how trace elements influence ecological processes. Furthermore, understanding ecological implications of plant Se accumulation are vital for safe implementation of biofortification and phytoremediation, technologies increasingly implemented to battle Se deficiency and toxicity. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  6. Plant community analysis and ecology of afromontane and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The plant communities of the forests of southwestern Ethiopia were described based on floristic analysis of the data collected between February 1995 and May 1996. Floristic analysis is based on the cover-abundance values of both woody and herbaceous species. Plant community-environment relationship was assessed ...

  7. A case for conserving imperiled plants by ecological area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tony Povilitis

    2001-01-01

    Imperiled plants are sometimes protected as endangered or threatened species at state and national levels. However, politically based geographic units fall short for conservation purposes. For example, only 19 percent of plant species considered imperiled in the San Juan region of Colorado and New Mexico appeared on recent state or federal endangered species lists....

  8. The importance of ecological costs for the evolution of plant defense against herbivory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Velzen, Ellen; Etienne, Rampal S

    2015-05-07

    Plant defense against herbivory comes at a cost, which can be either direct (reducing resources available for growth and reproduction) or indirect (through reducing ecological performance, for example intraspecific competitiveness). While direct costs have been well studied in theoretical models, ecological costs have received almost no attention. In this study we compare models with a direct trade-off (reduced growth rate) to models with an ecological trade-off (reduced competitive ability), using a combination of adaptive dynamics and simulations. In addition, we study the dependence of the level of defense that can evolve on the type of defense (directly by reducing consumption, or indirectly by inducing herbivore mortality (toxicity)), and on the type of herbivore against which the plant is defending itself (generalists or specialists). We find three major results: First, for both direct and ecological costs, defense only evolves if the benefit to the plant is direct (through reducing consumption). Second, the type of cost has a major effect on the evolutionary dynamics: direct costs always lead to a single optimal strategy against herbivores, but ecological costs can lead to branching and the coexistence of non-defending and defending plants; however, coexistence is only possible when defending against generalist herbivores. Finally, we find that fast-growing plants invest less than slow-growing plants when defending against generalist herbivores, as predicted by the Resource Availability Hypothesis, but invest more than slow-growing plants when defending against specialists. Our results clearly show that assumptions about ecological interactions are crucial for understanding the evolution of defense against herbivores. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Measurement of dissolved Cs-137 in stream water, soil water and groundwater at Headwater Forested Catchment in Fukushima after Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwagami, Sho; Tsujimura, Maki; Onda, Yuichi; Sakakibara, Koichi; Konuma, Ryohei; Sato, Yutaro

    2016-04-01

    as much as collected in flask. Stream water and groundwater samples were collected for 40 L each. All the water samples were filtered through 0.45 μm pore-size membrane. Water samples with less than few L were concentrated by evaporative concentration. Water samples with more than 40 L were concentrated using the ammonium molybdophosphate (AMP)/Cs compound method. The Cs-137 concentration was determined using gamma-ray spectrometry with a germanium semiconductor detector. Spatial distribution of dissolved Cs-137 concentration in the slope was obtained and the source of Cs-137 concentration in stream water was examined. The Cs-137 concentration in groundwater showed low value of 0.0004-0.001 Bq/L. The Cs-137 concentration of soil water showed 0.01-0.1 Bq/L. And Cs-137 concentrations of stream water were 0.007-0.03 Bq/L at steady state condition. Also Cs-137 concentrations in stream water showed temporary increase during rainfall event. The source of dissolved Cs-137 was suggested to be shallow soil water under saturated condition or leaching from the litter might be affecting.

  10. The direct and ecological costs of an ant-plant symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederickson, Megan E; Ravenscraft, Alison; Miller, Gabriel A; Arcila Hernández, Lina M; Booth, Gregory; Pierce, Naomi E

    2012-06-01

    How strong is selection for cheating in mutualisms? The answer depends on the type and magnitude of the costs of the mutualism. Here we investigated the direct and ecological costs of plant defense by ants in the association between Cordia nodosa, a myrmecophytic plant, and Allomerus octoarticulatus, a phytoecious ant. Cordia nodosa trees produce food and housing to reward ants that protect them against herbivores. For nearly 1 year, we manipulated the presence of A. octoarticulatus ants and most insect herbivores on C. nodosa in a full-factorial experiment. Ants increased plant growth when herbivores were present but decreased plant growth when herbivores were absent, indicating that hosting ants can be costly to plants. However, we did not detect a cost to ant colonies of defending host plants against herbivores. Although this asymmetry in costs suggests that the plants may be under stronger selection than the ants to cheat by withholding investment in their partner, the costs to C. nodosa are probably at least partly ecological, arising because ants tend scale insects on their host plants. We argue that ecological costs should favor resistance or traits other than cheating and thus that neither partner may face much temptation to cheat.

  11. A pharm-ecological perspective of terrestrial and aquatic plant-herbivore interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen; Dearing, M Denise; Gross, Elisabeth M; Orians, Colin M; Sotka, Erik E; Foley, William J

    2013-04-01

    We describe some recent themes in the nutritional and chemical ecology of herbivores and the importance of a broad pharmacological view of plant nutrients and chemical defenses that we integrate as "Pharm-ecology". The central role that dose, concentration, and response to plant components (nutrients and secondary metabolites) play in herbivore foraging behavior argues for broader application of approaches derived from pharmacology to both terrestrial and aquatic plant-herbivore systems. We describe how concepts of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics are used to better understand the foraging phenotype of herbivores relative to nutrient and secondary metabolites in food. Implementing these concepts into the field remains a challenge, but new modeling approaches that emphasize tradeoffs and the properties of individual animals show promise. Throughout, we highlight similarities and differences between the historic and future applications of pharm-ecological concepts in understanding the ecology and evolution of terrestrial and aquatic interactions between herbivores and plants. We offer several pharm-ecology related questions and hypotheses that could strengthen our understanding of the nutritional and chemical factors that modulate foraging behavior of herbivores across terrestrial and aquatic systems.

  12. EVOLUTIONARY AND ECOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF PLANT STRESS TOLERANCE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdulmalik G. Yusufov

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract. Aim. The aim is to study the threshold sensitivity to salinization of the environment of individual isolated structures for evaluating the salt tolerance of plants. Methods. Comparison of the reaction to salinization of seeds, sprouts, epicotyls, leaves, cotyledons and flowers in species of cultural and natural flora. The following parameters were taken into account in the work: the life span, the time and capacity of for mation of roots and buds, and the wet and dry biomass of species. The results were processed by Statara version 3.0 Shareware (Statistic 5.0 by the parameters of the interaction of roots and shoots. Results. Plant individuals are characterized by the presence of structures that differ in specialization and life span. The question of the correspondence of reactions of structures with the salt tolerance of plants needs to be studied. The stability of the individual as an integral system is determined by the interaction of organs and structures with each other and with other components of the complex community. It evolves in the course of evolution by selecting individuals in the formation of stable plant communities. Quantitative methods of autoecology and genetics of populations are used to understand its mechanisms and role. Conclusion. The structure of an individual plant in an isolated culture is characterized by the specific reaction to salinization of the environment. In this case, the reaction of seeds, sprouts and isolated epicotyls corresponds most closely to the stability of the individual under the stress.

  13. Ecological Performances of Plant Species of Halophilous Hydromorphic Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Speranza

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Coastal wetlands are very special environments, characterized by soils permanently or seasonally saturated by salt or brackish water. They host microorganisms and plants able to adapt to anoxic conditions. This paper proposes a review of recent scientific papers dealing with the study of coastal wetlands from different points of view. Some studies examine the species composition and the pattern of the spatial distribution of plant communities, depending on the depth of the salt water table, as well as on other related factors. A significant number of studies analyse instead the coastal wetlands in their ability for the phytoremediation (phytostabilisation and/or phytoextraction and highlight the importance of interactions between the rhizosphere of the halophytes and the physical environment. Finally, more recent studies consider the plant species of the coastal wetlands as a source of useful products (food, feed, oils and expose the results of promising researches on their cultivation.

  14. Host plants, distribution, and ecological association of Hoplolaimus columbus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, S A; Smith, F H

    1976-07-01

    Selected species and cultivars of plants were evaluated for host suitability for Hoplolaimus columbus under greenhouse and fieht conditions. Sixteen agronomic plant cultivars were assayed for infection and reproduction after 2-6 months. Lima bean, soybean, cotton, and sweet corn were most favorable for nematode reproduction, whereas sweet potato was a nonhost plant. Field corn and watermelon, which tolerated H. columbus without significant yield losses, are suited for alternative crops in the southern coastal plain. Populations of H. columbus occurred in 15% of soyhean and 25% of cotton soil samples assayed. Population levels of H. columbus and Helicotylenchus spp. were correlated with fluctuations in various soil nutrient factors, whereas Meloidogyne spp. and Scutellonema spp. were not. No correlation was detected between the presence of H. columbus and populations of other nematode genera stndied.

  15. Controlled ecological life support systems: Development of a plant growth module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Averner, Mel M.; Macelroy, Robert D.; Smernoff, David T.

    1987-01-01

    An effort was made to begin defining the scientific and technical requirements for the design and construction of a ground-based plant growth facility. In particular, science design criteria for the Plant Growth Module (PGM) of the Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS) were determined in the following areas: (1) irradiation parameters and associated equipment affecting plant growth; (2) air flow; (3) planting, culture, and harvest techniques; (4) carbon dioxide; (5) temperature and relative humidity; (6) oxygen; (7) construction materials and access; (8) volatile compounds; (9) bacteria, sterilization, and filtration; (10) nutrient application systems; (11) nutrient monitoring; and (12) nutrient pH and conductivity.

  16. Ecological impacts of small hydropower in China: Insights from an emergy analysis of a case plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pang, Mingyue; Zhang, Lixiao; Ulgiati, Sergio; Wang, Changbo

    2015-01-01

    The belief that small hydropower (SHP) systems are sources of clean energy with few or no ecological problems has been driving the rapid expansion of SHP plants in China and elsewhere. This paper presents an evaluation of the ecological impacts of SHP based on an emergy analysis of a plant located in Guizhou Province in southwest China. The results suggest that periodic downstream drying-up of the river is the largest contributor to the induced ecological impacts in terms of emergy cost. In 2010, the ecosystem service losses caused by downstream ecosystem degradation totaled 2.35E+18 seJ, which accounts for 38% of the total emergy utilized in the annual operation of this plant. If such losses could be avoided, i.e., if the SHP operated as designed, SHP projects would produce relatively modest impacts on the environment. When the reaches downstream of the SHP plant are not affected, the environmental loading ratio (ELR) is 2.20 and the emergy sustainability index (ESI) is 0.93; however, the ELR increases to 3.82 and ESI decreases to 0.38 when river drying-up occurs. These results indicate that China should rigorously investigate potential ecological problems of SHP development and proceed with caution rather than readily believing unjustified assumptions. - Highlights: • Ecological impacts of a SHP plant in China are analyzed using emergy synthesis. • The ecosystem degradation due to periodic drying-up was the largest emergy cost. • The eco-friendliness of SHP is questionable when it is intensively developed. • China should proceed with caution regarding the potential ecological impact of SHP

  17. Vegetation change: a reunifying concept in plant ecology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Davis, M. A.; Pergl, Jan; Truscott, A.; Kollmann, J.; Bakker, J. P.; Domenech, R.; Prach, Karel; Prieur-Richard, A.; Veeneklaas, R. M.; Pyšek, Petr; del Moral, R.; Hobbs, R. J.; Collins, S. L.; Pickett, S. T. A.; Reich, P. B.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 7, - (2005), s. 69-76 ISSN 1433-8319 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/02/0617 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : vegetation succession * climate change * plant invasions Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.053, year: 2005

  18. Ecological surveys of certain plant communities around urban areas ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    It was also observed that certain edaphic and human activity, discharge of pollutants with out any pretreatment was found responsible for variation in the nature, structure and composition of vegetation. The plant growth and their continuity was in danger in many disturb areas, especially in some coastal areas where salinity ...

  19. Naturalization of introduced plants: ecological drivers of biogeographic patterns

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Richardson, D. M.; Pyšek, Petr

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 196, č. 2 (2012), s. 383-396 ISSN 0028-646X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/1028 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : plant invasions * naturalization * macroecological patterns Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 6.736, year: 2012

  20. The ecology of macromycetes in roadside verges planted with trees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keizer, P.J.

    1993-01-01

    In this thesis phytocoena and mycocoena of ectomycorrhizal fungi and saprotrophic fungi in roadside verges planted with trees are described independently. An attempt is made to indicate which environmental variables are most important in the distinguished communities. Parasitic fungi on

  1. Tritrophic Interactions Mediated by Herbivore-Induced Plant Volatiles: Mechanisms, Ecological Relevance, and Application Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turlings, Ted C J; Erb, Matthias

    2018-01-07

    Tritrophic interactions between plants, herbivores, and their natural enemies are an integral part of all terrestrial ecosystems. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) play a key role in these interactions, as they can attract predators and parasitoids to herbivore-attacked plants. Thirty years after this discovery, the ecological importance of the phenomena is widely recognized. However, the primary function of HIPVs is still subject to much debate, as is the possibility of using these plant-produced cues in crop protection. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on the role of HIPVs in tritrophic interactions from an ecological as well as a mechanistic perspective. This overview focuses on the main gaps in our knowledge of tritrophic interactions, and we argue that filling these gaps will greatly facilitate efforts to exploit HIPVs for pest control.

  2. Ecological improvements to hydroelectric power plants under EEG. Guidance to environmental verifiers and water rights authorities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meyr, Christoph; Pfeifer, Hansjoerg; Schnell, Johannes; Hanfland, Sebastian

    2011-11-01

    The use of hydropower as a renewable form of energy is experiencing a renaissance due to the energy transition in Bavaria. The fishery evaluate not uncritically this development, because hydroelectric plants generally normally represent a considerable intervention in water and therefore in the habitat of the fish. In this case it should be noted that just often not even the minimum requirements of ecology are fulfilled at existing plants according to the Federal Water Act. [de

  3. Evolution of specialization and ecological character displacement along a gradient of plant quality.

    OpenAIRE

    Egas, C.J.M.; Sabelis, M.W.; Dieckmann, U.

    2005-01-01

    We study the combined evolutionary dynamics of herbivore specialization and eco-logical character displacement, taking into account foraging behavior of the herbivores, and a quality gradient of plant types. Herbivores can adapt by changing two adaptive traits: their level of specialization in feeding efficiency and their point of maximum feeding efficiency along the plant gradient. The number of herbivore phenotypes, their levels of specialization, and the amount of character displacement am...

  4. Economic and ecologic considerations for bidding procedures and contracting for bio-waste fermentation plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raussen, Thomas; Lootsma, Auke; Oldhafer, Nils

    2013-01-01

    The use of the energetic and mass potentials of biological wastes in an integrated fermentation and composting plant needs extensive conceptual and planning activities. The call for tenders for the construction of plants is an EU-wide open procedure. Public waste management organizations are interested to receive profitable solutions with reliable operation and minimized ecological impacts. The minimum requirements and technical aspects are defined by the public waste management organizations.

  5. Mirid (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) specialists of sticky plants: adaptations, interactions, and ecological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, Alfred G; Krimmel, Billy A

    2015-01-07

    Sticky plants-those having glandular trichomes (hairs) that produce adhesive, viscous exudates-can impede the movement of, and entrap, generalist insects. Disparate arthropod groups have adapted to these widespread and taxonomically diverse plants, yet their interactions with glandular hosts rarely are incorporated into broad ecological theory. Ecologists and entomologists might be unaware of even well-documented examples of insects that are sticky-plant specialists. The hemipteran family Miridae (more specifically, the omnivorous Dicyphini: Dicyphina) is the best-known group of arthropods that specializes on sticky plants. In the first synthesis of relationships with glandular plants for any insect family, we review mirid interactions with sticky hosts, including their adaptations (behavioral, morphological, and physiological) and mutualisms with carnivorous plants, and the ecological and agricultural implications of mirid-sticky plant systems. We propose that mirid research applies generally to tritrophic interactions on trichome-defended plants, enhances an understanding of insect-plant interactions, and provides information useful in managing crop pests.

  6. The estimation ecological risk for ground ecosystems in case of nuclear power plant failures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kremlenkov, D.Yu.; Kremlenkov, M.Yu.

    2004-01-01

    The results of probabilistic estimation of the damage for forest and agricultural ecosystems connected with cesium-137 and strontium-90 release during hypothetical accidents at NPPs are analyzed. The concept of radioecological risk including application of the models for radioactivity transport in atmosphere and calculation of of absorbed doses in ecosystem critical groups is used for the analysis. It is proved that the probable ecological damage expressed in terms of ecosystem destruction area depends on the scale of accidental radioisotope releases, meteorological conditions and radiation resistance of critical groups in plant associations. The conclusion is made that ecological risks expressed in the form of probable area of ecosystem destruction in the zone where dose loads lay in the range from minimal ecologically significant limit up to ecologically significant limit amount to 4-9% for conifers contaminated with cesium-137 and to 2-4% for agricultural crops contaminated with strontium-90 [ru

  7. Evolutionary Ecology of Multitrophic Interactions between Plants, Insect Herbivores and Entomopathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shikano, Ikkei

    2017-06-01

    Plants play an important role in the interactions between insect herbivores and their pathogens. Since the seminal review by Cory and Hoover (2006) on plant-mediated effects on insect-pathogen interactions, considerable progress has been made in understanding the complexity of these tritrophic interactions. Increasing interest in the areas of nutritional and ecological immunology over the last decade have revealed that plant primary and secondary metabolites can influence the outcomes of insect-pathogen interactions by altering insect immune functioning and physical barriers to pathogen entry. Some insects use plant secondary chemicals and nutrients to prevent infections (prophylactic medication) and medicate to limit the severity of infections (therapeutic medication). Recent findings suggest that there may be selectable plant traits that enhance entomopathogen efficacy, suggesting that entomopathogens could potentially impose selection pressure on plant traits that improve both pathogen and plant fitness. Moreover, plants in nature are inhabited by diverse communities of microbes, in addition to entomopathogens, some of which can trigger immune responses in insect herbivores. Plants are also shared by numerous other herbivorous arthropods with different modes of feeding that can trigger different defensive responses in plants. Some insect symbionts and gut microbes can degrade ingested defensive phytochemicals and be orally secreted onto wounded plant tissue during herbivory to alter plant defenses. Since non-entomopathogenic microbes and other arthropods are likely to influence the outcomes of plant-insect-entomopathogen interactions, I discuss a need to consider these multitrophic interactions within the greater web of species interactions.

  8. The ecology of plant secondary metabolites : from genes to global processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iason, G.R.; Dicke, M.; Hartley, S.E.

    2012-01-01

    Plant secondary metabolites (PSM) such as terpenes and phenolic compounds are known to have numerous ecological roles, notably in defence against herbivores, pathogens and abiotic stresses and in interactions with competitors and mutualists. This book reviews recent developments in the field to

  9. Ecological plant epigenetics: Evidence from model and non-model species, and the way forward

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Richards, C. L.; Alonso, C.; Becker, C.; Bossdorf, O.; Bucher, E.; Colomé-Tatché, M.; Durka, W.; Engelhardt, J.; Gaspar, B.; Gogol-Döring, A.; Grosse, I.; van Gurp, T. P.; Heer, K.; Kronholm, I.; Lampei, C.; Latzel, Vít; Mirouze, M.; Opgenoorth, L.; Paun, O.; Prohaska, S. A.; Rensing, S. A.; Stadler, P. f.; Trucchi, E.; Ullrich, K.; Verhoeven, K. J. F.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 20, č. 12 (2017), s. 1576-1590 ISSN 1461-023X Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : bioinformatics * ecological epigenetic s * genomics Subject RIV: EF - Botanics OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 9.449, year: 2016

  10. Evolution of specialization and ecological character displacement along a gradient of plant quality.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Egas, C.J.M.; Sabelis, M.W.; Dieckmann, U.

    2005-01-01

    We study the combined evolutionary dynamics of herbivore specialization and eco-logical character displacement, taking into account foraging behavior of the herbivores, and a quality gradient of plant types. Herbivores can adapt by changing two adaptive traits: their level of specialization in

  11. A strategy for maximizing native plant material diversity for ecological restoration, germplasm conservation and genecology research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berta Youtie; Nancy Shaw; Matt Fisk; Scott Jensen

    2012-01-01

    One of the most important steps in planning a restoration project is careful selection of ecologically adapted native plant material. As species-specific seed zone maps are not available for most species in the Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis (Wyoming big sagebrush) ecoregion in the Great Basin, USA, we are employing a provisional seed zone map based on annual...

  12. Climate change as an ecosystem architect: implications to rare plant ecology, conservation, and restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Constance I. Millar

    2003-01-01

    Recent advances in earth system sciences have revealed significant new information relevant to rare plant ecology and conservation. Analysis of climate change at high resolution with new and precise proxies of paleotemperatures reveals a picture over the past two million years of oscillatory climate change operating simultaneously at multiple timescales. Low-frequency...

  13. Ecology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kalusche, D.

    1978-01-01

    The book turns to the freshment, the teacher, for preparation of ecological topics for lessons, but also to pupils of the secondary stage II, and the main course ecology. The book was knowingly held simple with the restriction to: the ecosystem and its abiotic basic functions, simple articles on population biology, bioceonotic balance ith the questions of niche formation and the life form types coherent with it, of the substance and energy household, the production biology and space-wise and time-wise differentations within an ecological system form the main points. A central role in the volume is given to the illustrations. Their variety is to show and deepen the coherences shown. (orig./HP) [de

  14. Environmental study of the Wairakei Power Plant. [Effects of hydroelectric power plant on ecology of Waikato River Basin, New Zealand

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Axtmann, R C

    1974-12-01

    Physical, chemical, biological, ecological, and aesthetic aspects of the Wairakei Power Plant are examined, in varying detail, but with primary emphasis on the chemical and thermal effluents. When flows are average or higher in the Waikato River, the Plant's environmental effects are not overly severe. However, operating requirements for the Waikato Hydro-electric System are such that the Plant sporadically produces wastes that may affect the human and natural environment adversely. These adverse effects are not presently too serious, but suggestions are made for improving the Plant's overall environmental performance. Although the point is not discussed in detail, it is clear from the results of the study that any additional thermal plants on the Waikato could strain the river's absorptive capacities severely, unless alternative disposal techniques are used for the various effluents.

  15. Plant-insect interactions under bacterial influence: ecological implications and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugio, Akiko; Dubreuil, Géraldine; Giron, David; Simon, Jean-Christophe

    2015-02-01

    Plants and insects have been co-existing for more than 400 million years, leading to intimate and complex relationships. Throughout their own evolutionary history, plants and insects have also established intricate and very diverse relationships with microbial associates. Studies in recent years have revealed plant- or insect-associated microbes to be instrumental in plant-insect interactions, with important implications for plant defences and plant utilization by insects. Microbial communities associated with plants are rich in diversity, and their structure greatly differs between below- and above-ground levels. Microbial communities associated with insect herbivores generally present a lower diversity and can reside in different body parts of their hosts including bacteriocytes, haemolymph, gut, and salivary glands. Acquisition of microbial communities by vertical or horizontal transmission and possible genetic exchanges through lateral transfer could strongly impact on the host insect or plant fitness by conferring adaptations to new habitats. Recent developments in sequencing technologies and molecular tools have dramatically enhanced opportunities to characterize the microbial diversity associated with plants and insects and have unveiled some of the mechanisms by which symbionts modulate plant-insect interactions. Here, we focus on the diversity and ecological consequences of bacterial communities associated with plants and herbivorous insects. We also highlight the known mechanisms by which these microbes interfere with plant-insect interactions. Revealing such mechanisms in model systems under controlled environments but also in more natural ecological settings will help us to understand the evolution of complex multitrophic interactions in which plants, herbivorous insects, and micro-organisms are inserted. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions

  16. Ecological effects of aphid abundance, genotypic variation, and contemporary evolution on plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turley, Nash E; Johnson, Marc T J

    2015-07-01

    Genetic variation and contemporary evolution within populations can shape the strength and nature of species interactions, but the relative importance of these forces compared to other ecological factors is unclear. We conducted a field experiment testing the effects of genotypic variation, abundance, and presence/absence of green peach aphids (Myzus persicae) on the growth, leaf nitrogen, and carbon of two plant species (Brassica napus and Solanum nigrum). Aphid genotype affected B. napus but not S. nigrum biomass explaining 20 and 7% of the total variation, respectively. Averaging across both plant species, the presence/absence of aphids had a 1.6× larger effect size (Cohen's d) than aphid genotype, and aphid abundance had the strongest negative effects on plant biomass explaining 29% of the total variation. On B. napus, aphid genotypes had different effects on leaf nitrogen depending on their abundance. Aphids did not influence leaf nitrogen in S. nigrum nor leaf carbon in either species. We conducted a second experiment in the field to test whether contemporary evolution could affect plant performance. Aphid populations evolved in as little as five generations, but the rate and direction of this evolution did not consistently vary between plant species. On one host species (B. napus), faster evolving populations had greater negative effects on host plant biomass, with aphid evolutionary rate explaining 23% of the variation in host plant biomass. Together, these results show that genetic variation and evolution in an insect herbivore can play important roles in shaping host plant ecology.

  17. The genetics of indirect ecological effects - plant parasites and aphid herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer K Rowntree

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available When parasitic plants and aphid herbivores share a host, both direct and indirect ecological effects (IEEs can influence evolutionary processes. We used a hemiparasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor, a grass host (Hordeum vulgare and a cereal aphid (Sitobion avenae to investigate the genetics of IEEs between the aphid and the parasitic plant, and looked to see how these might affect or be influenced by the genetic diversity of the host plants. Survival of R. minor depended on the parasite’s population of origin, the genotypes of the aphids sharing the host and the genetic diversity in the host plant community. Hence the indirect effects of the aphids on the parasitic plants depended on the genetic environment of the system. Here, we show that genetic variation can be important in determining the outcome of IEEs. Therefore, IEEs have the potential to influence evolutionary processes and the continuity of species interactions over time.

  18. Insect herbivores drive real-time ecological and evolutionary change in plant populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrawal, Anurag A; Hastings, Amy P; Johnson, Marc T J; Maron, John L; Salminen, Juha-Pekka

    2012-10-05

    Insect herbivores are hypothesized to be major factors affecting the ecology and evolution of plants. We tested this prediction by suppressing insects in replicated field populations of a native plant, Oenothera biennis, which reduced seed predation, altered interspecific competitive dynamics, and resulted in rapid evolutionary divergence. Comparative genotyping and phenotyping of nearly 12,000 O. biennis individuals revealed that in plots protected from insects, resistance to herbivores declined through time owing to changes in flowering time and lower defensive ellagitannins in fruits, whereas plant competitive ability increased. This independent real-time evolution of plant resistance and competitive ability in the field resulted from the relaxation of direct selective effects of insects on plant defense and through indirect effects due to reduced herbivory on plant competitors.

  19. Mechanisms of selenium hyperaccumulation in plants: A survey of molecular, biochemical and ecological cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Leonardo Warzea; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H; Schiavon, Michela

    2018-04-04

    Selenium (Se) is a micronutrient required for many life forms, but toxic at higher concentration. Plants do not have a Se requirement, but can benefit from Se via enhanced antioxidant activity. Some plant species can accumulate Se to concentrations above 0.1% of dry weight and seem to possess mechanisms that distinguish Se from its analog sulfur (S). Research on these so-called Se hyperaccumulators aims to identify key genes for this remarkable trait and to understand ecological implications. This review gives a broad overview of the current knowledge about Se uptake and metabolism in plants, with a special emphasis on hypothesized mechanisms of Se hyperaccumulation. The role of Se in plant defense responses and the associated ecological implications are discussed. Hyperaccumulators have enhanced expression of S transport and assimilation genes, and may possess transporters with higher specificity for selenate over sulfate. Genes involved in antioxidant reactions and biotic stress resistance are also upregulated. Key regulators in these processes appear to be the growth regulators jasmonic acid, salicylic acid and ethylene. Hyperaccumulation may have evolved owing to associated ecological benefits, particularly protection against pathogens and herbivores, and as a form of elemental allelopathy. Understanding plant Se uptake and metabolism in hyperaccumulators has broad relevance for the environment, agriculture and human and animal nutrition and may help generate crops with selenate-specific uptake and high capacity to convert selenate to less toxic, anticarcinogenic, organic Se compounds. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Vascular plants of the Nevada Test Site and Central-Southern Nevada: ecologic and geographic distributions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beatley, J.C.

    1976-01-01

    The physical environment of the Nevada Test Site and surrounding area is described with regard to physiography, geology, soils, and climate. A discussion of plant associations is given for the Mojave Desert, Transition Desert, and Great Basin Desert. The vegetation of disturbed sites is discussed with regard to introduced species as well as endangered and threatened species. Collections of vascular plants were made during 1959 to 1975. The plants, belonging to 1093 taxa and 98 families are listed together with information concerning ecologic and geographic distributions. Indexes to families, genera, and species are included. (HLW)

  1. Hydrogen Fuel as Ecological Contribution to Operation of the Existing Coal-Fired Thermal Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cosic, D.

    2009-01-01

    The analysis is carried out of the application of a new hydrogen based alternative fuel as ecological contribution of the coal thermal power plants operation. Given the fact that coal thermal power plants are seen as the largest producers, not only of CO 2 , but of all others harmful gases, the idea is initiated to use the new alternative fuel as an additive to the coal which would result in much better performance of the coal power plants from an ecological point of view. It is possible to use such a fuel in relation of 10-30% of former coal use. The positive influence of such an application is much bigger than relative used quantity. This lecture has a goal to incite potential investors to create conditions for industrial testing of the new fuel. It will be very interesting to animate investors for large-scale production of the new fuel, too.(author).

  2. Revisiting the Holy Grail: using plant functional traits to understand ecological processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funk, Jennifer L; Larson, Julie E; Ames, Gregory M; Butterfield, Bradley J; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Firn, Jennifer; Laughlin, Daniel C; Sutton-Grier, Ariana E; Williams, Laura; Wright, Justin

    2017-05-01

    One of ecology's grand challenges is developing general rules to explain and predict highly complex systems. Understanding and predicting ecological processes from species' traits has been considered a 'Holy Grail' in ecology. Plant functional traits are increasingly being used to develop mechanistic models that can predict how ecological communities will respond to abiotic and biotic perturbations and how species will affect ecosystem function and services in a rapidly changing world; however, significant challenges remain. In this review, we highlight recent work and outstanding questions in three areas: (i) selecting relevant traits; (ii) describing intraspecific trait variation and incorporating this variation into models; and (iii) scaling trait data to community- and ecosystem-level processes. Over the past decade, there have been significant advances in the characterization of plant strategies based on traits and trait relationships, and the integration of traits into multivariate indices and models of community and ecosystem function. However, the utility of trait-based approaches in ecology will benefit from efforts that demonstrate how these traits and indices influence organismal, community, and ecosystem processes across vegetation types, which may be achieved through meta-analysis and enhancement of trait databases. Additionally, intraspecific trait variation and species interactions need to be incorporated into predictive models using tools such as Bayesian hierarchical modelling. Finally, existing models linking traits to community and ecosystem processes need to be empirically tested for their applicability to be realized. © 2016 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  3. Identifying plant traits: a key aspect for suitable species selection in ecological restoration of semiarid slopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bochet, Esther; García-Fayos, Patricio

    2017-04-01

    In the context of ecological restoration, one of the greatest challenges for practitioners and scientists is to select suitable species for revegetation purposes. In semiarid environments where restoration projects often fail, little attention has been paid so far to the contribution of plant traits to species success. The objective of this study was to (1) identify plant traits associated with species success on four roadside situations along an erosion-productivity gradient, and (2) to provide an ecological framework for selecting suitable species on the basis of their morphological and functional traits, applied to semiarid environments. We analyzed the association of 10 different plant traits with species success of 296 species surveyed on the four roadside situations in a semiarid region (Valencia, Spain). Plant traits included general plant traits (longevity, woodiness) and more specific root-, seed- and leaf-related traits (root type, sprouting ability, seed mucilage, seed mass, seed susceptibility to removal, specific leaf area and leaf dry matter content). All of them were selected according to the prevailing limiting ecogeomorphological processes acting along the erosion-productivity gradient. We observed strong shifts along the erosion-productivity gradient in the traits associated to species success. At the harshest end of the gradient, the most intensely eroded and driest one, species success was mainly associated to seed resistance to removal by runoff and to resistance to drought. At the opposite end of the gradient, the most productive one, species success was associated to a competitive-ruderal plant strategy (herbaceous successful species with high specific leaf area and low leaf dry matter content). Our study provides an ecologically-based approach for selecting suitable native species on the basis or their morphological and functional traits and supports a differential trait-based selection of species as regards roadslope type and aspect. In

  4. On Some New Indicators for the Energo-Ecological Assessment of Thermo-Power Plants Operation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cardu, M.; Sandu, D.; Negoitescu, A.S.

    2008-01-01

    The authors offer a critical analysis of pollution indicators currently applied for the ecological assessment of the thermo power plant's operation. They forward new energo-ecological indicators to highlight both the qualitative aspect of polluting emissions and their quantitative aspect, by relating their concentration in the flue gases purged into the atmosphere to the energy produced during the same interval. The application of these indicators contributes to the attenuation of the global warming phenomenon and to the protection of the world's resources of fossil fuels.

  5. Ecological turmoil in evolutionary dynamics of plant-insect interactions: defense to offence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Manasi; Lomate, Purushottam R; Joshi, Rakesh S; Punekar, Sachin A; Gupta, Vidya S; Giri, Ashok P

    2015-10-01

    Available history manifests contemporary diversity that exists in plant-insect interactions. A radical thinking is necessary for developing strategies that can co-opt natural insect-plant mutualism, ecology and environmental safety for crop protection since current agricultural practices can reduce species richness and evenness. The global environmental changes, such as increased temperature, CO₂ and ozone levels, biological invasions, land-use change and habitat fragmentation together play a significant role in re-shaping the plant-insect multi-trophic interactions. Diverse natural products need to be studied and explored for their biological functions as insect pest control agents. In order to assure the success of an integrated pest management strategy, human activities need to be harmonized to minimize the global climate changes. Plant-insect interaction is one of the most primitive and co-evolved associations, often influenced by surrounding changes. In this review, we account the persistence and evolution of plant-insect interactions, with particular focus on the effect of climate change and human interference on these interactions. Plants and insects have been maintaining their existence through a mutual service-resource relationship while defending themselves. We provide a comprehensive catalog of various defense strategies employed by the plants and/or insects. Furthermore, several important factors such as accelerated diversification, imbalance in the mutualism, and chemical arms race between plants and insects as indirect consequences of human practices are highlighted. Inappropriate implementation of several modern agricultural practices has resulted in (i) endangered mutualisms, (ii) pest status and resistance in insects and (iii) ecological instability. Moreover, altered environmental conditions eventually triggered the resetting of plant-insect interactions. Hence, multitrophic approaches that can harmonize human activities and minimize their

  6. Understanding and planning ecological restoration of plant-pollinator networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devoto, Mariano; Bailey, Sallie; Craze, Paul; Memmott, Jane

    2012-04-01

    Theory developed from studying changes in the structure and function of communities during natural or managed succession can guide the restoration of particular communities. We constructed 30 quantitative plant-flower visitor networks along a managed successional gradient to identify the main drivers of change in network structure. We then applied two alternative restoration strategies in silico (restoring for functional complementarity or redundancy) to data from our early successional plots to examine whether different strategies affected the restoration trajectories. Changes in network structure were explained by a combination of age, tree density and variation in tree diameter, even when variance explained by undergrowth structure was accounted for first. A combination of field data, a network approach and numerical simulations helped to identify which species should be given restoration priority in the context of different restoration targets. This combined approach provides a powerful tool for directing management decisions, particularly when management seeks to restore or conserve ecosystem function. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Turnover of plant lineages shapes herbivore phylogenetic beta diversity along ecological gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellissier, Loïc; Ndiribe, Charlotte; Dubuis, Anne; Pradervand, Jean-Nicolas; Salamin, Nicolas; Guisan, Antoine; Rasmann, Sergio

    2013-05-01

    Understanding drivers of biodiversity patterns is of prime importance in this era of severe environmental crisis. More diverse plant communities have been postulated to represent a larger functional trait-space, more likely to sustain a diverse assembly of herbivore species. Here, we expand this hypothesis to integrate environmental, functional and phylogenetic variation of plant communities as factors explaining the diversity of lepidopteran assemblages along elevation gradients in the Swiss Western Alps. According to expectations, we found that the association between butterflies and their host plants is highly phylogenetically structured. Multiple regression analyses showed the combined effect of climate, functional traits and phylogenetic diversity in structuring butterfly communities. Furthermore, we provide the first evidence that plant phylogenetic beta diversity is the major driver explaining butterfly phylogenetic beta diversity. Along ecological gradients, the bottom up control of herbivore diversity is thus driven by phylogenetically structured turnover of plant traits as well as environmental variables. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  8. How common is ecological speciation in plant-feeding insects? A 'Higher' Nematinae perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nyman Tommi

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Ecological speciation is a process in which a transiently resource-polymorphic species divides into two specialized sister lineages as a result of divergent selection pressures caused by the use of multiple niches or environments. Ecology-based speciation has been studied intensively in plant-feeding insects, in which both sympatric and allopatric shifts onto novel host plants could speed up diversification. However, while numerous examples of species pairs likely to have originated by resource shifts have been found, the overall importance of ecological speciation in relation to other, non-ecological speciation modes remains unknown. Here, we apply phylogenetic information on sawflies belonging to the 'Higher' Nematinae (Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae to infer the frequency of niche shifts in relation to speciation events. Results Phylogenetic trees reconstructed on the basis of DNA sequence data show that the diversification of higher nematines has involved frequent shifts in larval feeding habits and in the use of plant taxa. However, the inferred number of resource shifts is considerably lower than the number of past speciation events, indicating that the majority of divergences have occurred by non-ecological allopatric speciation; based on a time-corrected analysis of sister species, we estimate that a maximum of c. 20% of lineage splits have been triggered by a change in resource use. In addition, we find that postspeciational changes in geographic distributions have led to broad sympatry in many species having identical host-plant ranges. Conclusion Our analysis indicates that the importance of niche shifts for the diversification of herbivorous insects is at present implicitly and explicitly overestimated. In the case of the Higher Nematinae, employing a time correction for sister-species comparisons lowered the proportion of apparent ecology-based speciation events from c. 50-60% to around 20%, but such corrections are

  9. Insect-plant interactions: new pathways to a better comprehension of ecological communities in Neotropical savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del-Claro, Kleber; Torezan-Silingardi, Helena M

    2009-01-01

    The causal mechanisms shaping and structuring ecological communities are among the most important themes in ecology. The study of insect-plant interactions in trophic nets is pointed out as basic to improve our knowledge on this issue. The cerrado tropical savanna, although extremely diverse, distributed in more than 20% of the Brazilian territory and filled up with rich examples of multitrophic interactions, is underexplored in terms of biodiversity interaction. Here, this ecosystem is suggested as valuable to the study of insect-plant interactions whose understanding can throw a new light at the ecological communities' theory. Three distinct systems: extrafloral nectary plants or trophobiont herbivores and the associated ant fauna; floral herbivores-predators-pollinators; and plants-forest engineers and associated fauna, will serve as examples to illustrate promising new pathways in cerrado. The aim of this brief text is to instigate young researchers, mainly entomologists, to initiate more elaborated field work, including experimental manipulations in multitrophic systems, to explore in an interactive way the structure that maintain preserved viable communities in the Neotropical savanna.

  10. Microbiomes: unifying animal and plant systems through the lens of community ecology theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christian, Natalie; Whitaker, Briana K; Clay, Keith

    2015-01-01

    The field of microbiome research is arguably one of the fastest growing in biology. Bacteria feature prominently in studies on animal health, but fungi appear to be the more prominent functional symbionts for plants. Despite the similarities in the ecological organization and evolutionary importance of animal-bacterial and plant-fungal microbiomes, there is a general failure across disciplines to integrate the advances made in each system. Researchers studying bacterial symbionts in animals benefit from greater access to efficient sequencing pipelines and taxonomic reference databases, perhaps due to high medical and veterinary interest. However, researchers studying plant-fungal symbionts benefit from the relative tractability of fungi under laboratory conditions and ease of cultivation. Thus each system has strengths to offer, but both suffer from the lack of a common conceptual framework. We argue that community ecology best illuminates complex species interactions across space and time. In this synthesis we compare and contrast the animal-bacterial and plant-fungal microbiomes using six core theories in community ecology (i.e., succession, community assembly, metacommunities, multi-trophic interactions, disturbance, restoration). The examples and questions raised are meant to spark discussion amongst biologists and lead to the integration of these two systems, as well as more informative, manipulatory experiments on microbiomes research.

  11. Microbiomes: unifying animal and plant systems through the lens of community ecology theory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie eChristian

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The field of microbiome research is arguably one of the fastest growing in biology. Bacteria feature prominently in studies on animal health, but fungi appear to be the more prominent functional symbionts for plants. Despite the similarities in the ecological organization and evolutionary importance of animal-bacterial and plant-fungal microbiomes, there is a general failure across disciplines to integrate the advances made in each system. Researchers studying bacterial symbionts in animals benefit from greater access to efficient sequencing pipelines and taxonomic reference databases, perhaps due to high medical and veterinary interest. However, researchers studying plant-fungal symbionts benefit from the relative tractability of fungi under laboratory conditions and ease of cultivation. Thus each system has strengths to offer, but both suffer from the lack of a common conceptual framework. We argue that community ecology best illuminates complex species interactions across space and time. In this synthesis we compare and contrast the animal-bacterial and plant-fungal microbiomes using six core theories in community ecology (i.e., succession, community assembly, metacommunities, multi-trophic interactions, disturbance, restoration. The examples and questions raised are meant to spark discussion amongst biologists and lead to the integration of these two systems, as well as more informative, manipulatory experiments on microbiomes research.

  12. Metagenomic analysis of an ecological wastewater treatment plant's microbial communities and their potential to metabolize pharmaceuticals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balcom, Ian N; Driscoll, Heather; Vincent, James; Leduc, Meagan

    2016-01-01

    Pharmaceuticals and other micropollutants have been detected in drinking water, groundwater, surface water, and soil around the world. Even in locations where wastewater treatment is required, they can be found in drinking water wells, municipal water supplies, and agricultural soils. It is clear conventional wastewater treatment technologies are not meeting the challenge of the mounting pressures on global freshwater supplies. Cost-effective ecological wastewater treatment technologies have been developed in response. To determine whether the removal of micropollutants in ecological wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is promoted by the plant-microbe interactions, as has been reported for other recalcitrant xenobiotics, biofilm microbial communities growing on the surfaces of plant roots were profiled by whole metagenome sequencing and compared to the microbial communities residing in the wastewater. In this study, the concentrations of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) were quantified in each treatment tank of the ecological WWTP treating human wastewater at a highway rest stop and visitor center in Vermont. The concentrations of detected PPCPs were substantially greater than values reported for conventional WWTPs likely due to onsite recirculation of wastewater. The greatest reductions in PPCPs concentrations were observed in the anoxic treatment tank where Bacilli dominated the biofilm community. Benzoate degradation was the most abundant xenobiotic metabolic category identified throughout the system. Collectively, the microbial communities residing in the wastewater were taxonomically and metabolically more diverse than the immersed plant root biofilm. However, greater heterogeneity and higher relative abundances of xenobiotic metabolism genes was observed for the root biofilm.

  13. Current issues in the evolutionary ecology of ant-plant symbioses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Veronika E; Frederickson, Megan E; McKey, Doyle; Blatrix, Rumsaïs

    2014-05-01

    Ant-plant symbioses involve plants that provide hollow structures specialized for housing ants and often food to ants. In return, the inhabiting ants protect plants against herbivores and sometimes provide them with nutrients. Here, we review recent advances in ant-plant symbioses, focusing on three areas. First, the nutritional ecology of plant-ants, which is based not only on plant-derived food rewards, but also on inputs from other symbiotic partners, in particular fungi and possibly bacteria. Food and protection are the most important 'currencies' exchanged between partners and they drive the nature and evolution of the relationships. Secondly, studies of conflict and cooperation in ant-plant symbioses have contributed key insights into the evolution and maintenance of mutualism, particularly how partner-mediated feedbacks affect the specificity and stability of mutualisms. There is little evidence that mutualistic ants or plants are under selection to cheat, but the costs and benefits of ant-plant interactions do vary with environmental factors, making them vulnerable to natural or anthropogenic environmental change. Thus, thirdly, ant-plant symbioses should be considered good models for investigating the effects of global change on the outcome of mutualistic interactions. © 2014 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  14. A method for under-sampled ecological network data analysis: plant-pollination as case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter B. Sorensen

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we develop a method, termed the Interaction Distribution (ID method, for analysis of quantitative ecological network data. In many cases, quantitative network data sets are under-sampled, i.e. many interactions are poorly sampled or remain unobserved. Hence, the output of statistical analyses may fail to differentiate between patterns that are statistical artefacts and those which are real characteristics of ecological networks. The ID method can support assessment and inference of under-sampled ecological network data. In the current paper, we illustrate and discuss the ID method based on the properties of plant-animal pollination data sets of flower visitation frequencies. However, the ID method may be applied to other types of ecological networks. The method can supplement existing network analyses based on two definitions of the underlying probabilities for each combination of pollinator and plant species: (1, pi,j: the probability for a visit made by the i’th pollinator species to take place on the j’th plant species; (2, qi,j: the probability for a visit received by the j’th plant species to be made by the i’th pollinator. The method applies the Dirichlet distribution to estimate these two probabilities, based on a given empirical data set. The estimated mean values for pi,j and qi,j reflect the relative differences between recorded numbers of visits for different pollinator and plant species, and the estimated uncertainty of pi,j and qi,j decreases with higher numbers of recorded visits.

  15. Watermill and Small-Scale Hydroelectric Power Plant Landscapes Assessed According to Ecological Aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilita Lazdāne

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Research of watermill and small-scale hydroelectric power plant (HPP landscapes in Latvia according to ecological aspects is a part of a more complex research. The aim of this research is to examine the existing situation of watermill and small-scale HPP landscapes in Latvia by applying the ecological assessment criteria, and then try to formulate a definition of common tendencies of the landscape character. This paper provides a landscape inventory matrix for research in the field stu­dies of landscape identification at the local planning level. The duration of the research was from 2010 to 2012. The research includes 42 territories starting with the three most densely developed areas in Latvia: in Latgale, Kurzeme and Vidzeme uplands distribution ranges. The research results reflect tendencies of the landscape features assessed according to the previously developed criteria of ecological aspects.

  16. Plant genetic variation mediates an indirect ecological effect between belowground earthworms and aboveground aphids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Akanksha; Braun, Julia; Decker, Emilia; Hans, Sarah; Wagner, Agnes; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Zytynska, Sharon E

    2014-10-21

    Interactions between aboveground and belowground terrestrial communities are often mediated by plants, with soil organisms interacting via the roots and aboveground organisms via the shoots and leaves. Many studies now show that plant genetics can drive changes in the structure of both above and belowground communities; however, the role of plant genetic variation in mediating aboveground-belowground interactions is still unclear. We used an earthworm-plant-aphid model system with two aphid species (Aphis fabae and Acyrthosiphon pisum) to test the effect of host-plant (Vicia faba) genetic variation on the indirect interaction between the belowground earthworms (Eisenia veneta) on the aboveground aphid populations. Our data shows that host-plant variety mediated an indirect ecological effect of earthworms on generalist black bean aphids (A. fabae), with earthworms increasing aphid growth rate in three plant varieties but decreasing it in another variety. We found no effect of earthworms on the second aphid species, the pea aphid (A. pisum), and no effect of competition between the aphid species. Plant biomass was increased when earthworms were present, and decreased when A. pisum was feeding on the plant (mediated by plant variety). Although A. fabae aphids were influenced by the plants and worms, they did not, in turn, alter plant biomass. Previous work has shown inconsistent effects of earthworms on aphids, but we suggest these differences could be explained by plant genetic variation and variation among aphid species. This study demonstrates that the outcome of belowground-aboveground interactions can be mediated by genetic variation in the host-plant, but depends on the identity of the species involved.

  17. Suppressive composts: microbial ecology links between abiotic environments and healthy plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadar, Yitzhak; Papadopoulou, Kalliope K

    2012-01-01

    Suppressive compost provides an environment in which plant disease development is reduced, even in the presence of a pathogen and a susceptible host. Despite the numerous positive reports, its practical application is still limited. The main reason for this is the lack of reliable prediction and quality control tools for evaluation of the level and specificity of the suppression effect. Plant disease suppression is the direct result of the activity of consortia of antagonistic microorganisms that naturally recolonize the compost during the cooling phase of the process. Thus, it is imperative to increase the level of understanding of compost microbial ecology and population dynamics. This may lead to the development of an ecological theory for complex ecosystems as well as favor the establishment of hypothesis-driven studies.

  18. Do seedling functional groups reflect ecological strategies of woody plant species in Caatinga?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiane Gomes Calaça Menezes

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT It is assumed that morphological traits of seedlings reflect different strategies in response to environmental conditions. The ecological significance of this has been widely documented in rainforests, where habitat structure and species interactions play an important role in community assembly. However, in seasonally dry ecosystems, where environmental filtering is expected to strongly influence community structure, this relationship is poorly understood. We investigated this relationship between functional groups of seedlings and life history traits and tested whether functional group predicts the ecological strategies employed by woody species to deal with the stressful conditions in seasonally dry ecosystems. Seedling functional groups, life history traits and traits that reflect ecological strategies for occupying seasonally dry environments were described for twenty-six plant species. Seedlings of species from the Caatinga vegetation exhibited a functional profile different from that observed in rainforests ecosystems. Phanerocotylar-epigeal seedlings were the most frequently observed groups, and had the largest range of ecological strategies related to dealing with seasonally dry environments, while phanerocotylar-hypogeal-reserve seedlings exhibited an increase in frequency with seasonality. We discuss these results in relation to those observed in other tropical forests and their ecological significance in seasonally dry environments.

  19. Ecology and Genomic Insights into Plant-Pathogenic and Plant-Nonpathogenic Endophytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brader, Günter; Compant, Stéphane; Vescio, Kathryn; Mitter, Birgit; Trognitz, Friederike; Ma, Li-Jun; Sessitsch, Angela

    2017-08-04

    Plants are colonized on their surfaces and in the rhizosphere and phyllosphere by a multitude of different microorganisms and are inhabited internally by endophytes. Most endophytes act as commensals without any known effect on their plant host, but multiple bacteria and fungi establish a mutualistic relationship with plants, and some act as pathogens. The outcome of these plant-microbe interactions depends on biotic and abiotic environmental factors and on the genotype of the host and the interacting microorganism. In addition, endophytic microbiota and the manifold interactions between members, including pathogens, have a profound influence on the function of the system plant and the development of pathobiomes. In this review, we elaborate on the differences and similarities between nonpathogenic and pathogenic endophytes in terms of host plant response, colonization strategy, and genome content. We furthermore discuss environmental effects and biotic interactions within plant microbiota that influence pathogenesis and the pathobiome.

  20. Heavy metal contamination and ecological risk of farmland soils adjoining steel plants in Tangshan, Hebei, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Liyun; Yang, Maomao; Wang, Liping; Peng, Fei; Li, Yuan; Bai, Hao

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the heavy metal concentrations and ecological risks to farmland soils caused by atmospheric deposition adjoining five industrial steel districts in Tangshan, Hebei, China. A total of 39 topsoil samples from adjoining these plants were collected and analyzed for Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr, and As. The geo-accumulation index (Igeo) and potential ecological risk index (PERI) were calculated to assess the heavy metal pollution level in soils. The results showed that the levels of Pb and As in farmland soils adjoining all steel plants were more than the background value, with the As content being excessively high. The Cr and Cu contents of some samples were over the background values, but the Zn content was not. In all the research areas, the largest Igeo value of the heavy metals was for As, followed by Pb, and the largest monomial PERI ([Formula: see text]) was As, which showed that the pollution of As in farmland soils was significant and had considerable ecological risk. Additionally, the heavy metal sequential extraction experiments showed that Pb and Cr, which exceeded the background value, were present in about 20% of the exchangeable and carbonate-bound fractions in the soils surrounding some steel plants. This would imply the risk of these heavy metals being absorbed and accumulated by the crops. Therefore, the local government needs to control the pollution of heavy metals in the farmland soils adjoining the steel plant as soon as possible, in order to avoid possible ecological and food safety risks.

  1. Global Invader Impact Network (GIIN): toward standardized evaluation of the ecological impacts of invasive plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Barney, J. N.; Tekiela, D. R.; Barrios-Garcia, M. N.; Dimarco, R. D.; Hufbauer, R. A.; Leipzig-Scott, P.; Nunez, M. A.; Pauchard, A.; Pyšek, Petr; Vítková, Michaela; Maxwell, B. D.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 5, č. 14 (2015), s. 2878-2889 ISSN 2045-7758 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP505/11/1112 Grant - others:AV ČR(CZ) AP1002 Program:Akademická prémie - Praemium Academiae Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : invasive plants * coordinated distributed experiment * impact assessment Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.537, year: 2015

  2. Evolution in plant populations as a driver of ecological changes in arthropod communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Marc T J; Vellend, Mark; Stinchcombe, John R

    2009-06-12

    Heritable variation in traits can have wide-ranging impacts on species interactions, but the effects that ongoing evolution has on the temporal ecological dynamics of communities are not well understood. Here, we identify three conditions that, if experimentally satisfied, support the hypothesis that evolution by natural selection can drive ecological changes in communities. These conditions are: (i) a focal population exhibits genetic variation in a trait(s), (ii) there is measurable directional selection on the trait(s), and (iii) the trait(s) under selection affects variation in a community variable(s). When these conditions are met, we expect evolution by natural selection to cause ecological changes in the community. We tested these conditions in a field experiment examining the interactions between a native plant (Oenothera biennis) and its associated arthropod community (more than 90 spp.). Oenothera biennis exhibited genetic variation in several plant traits and there was directional selection on plant biomass, life-history strategy (annual versus biennial reproduction) and herbivore resistance. Genetically based variation in biomass and life-history strategy consistently affected the abundance of common arthropod species, total arthropod abundance and arthropod species richness. Using two modelling approaches, we show that evolution by natural selection in large O. biennis populations is predicted to cause changes in the abundance of individual arthropod species, increases in the total abundance of arthropods and a decline in the number of arthropod species. In small O. biennis populations, genetic drift is predicted to swamp out the effects of selection, making the evolution of plant populations unpredictable. In short, evolution by natural selection can play an important role in affecting the dynamics of communities, but these effects depend on several ecological factors. The framework presented here is general and can be applied to other systems to

  3. Evolution in plant populations as a driver of ecological changes in arthropod communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Marc T.J.; Vellend, Mark; Stinchcombe, John R.

    2009-01-01

    Heritable variation in traits can have wide-ranging impacts on species interactions, but the effects that ongoing evolution has on the temporal ecological dynamics of communities are not well understood. Here, we identify three conditions that, if experimentally satisfied, support the hypothesis that evolution by natural selection can drive ecological changes in communities. These conditions are: (i) a focal population exhibits genetic variation in a trait(s), (ii) there is measurable directional selection on the trait(s), and (iii) the trait(s) under selection affects variation in a community variable(s). When these conditions are met, we expect evolution by natural selection to cause ecological changes in the community. We tested these conditions in a field experiment examining the interactions between a native plant (Oenothera biennis) and its associated arthropod community (more than 90 spp.). Oenothera biennis exhibited genetic variation in several plant traits and there was directional selection on plant biomass, life-history strategy (annual versus biennial reproduction) and herbivore resistance. Genetically based variation in biomass and life-history strategy consistently affected the abundance of common arthropod species, total arthropod abundance and arthropod species richness. Using two modelling approaches, we show that evolution by natural selection in large O. biennis populations is predicted to cause changes in the abundance of individual arthropod species, increases in the total abundance of arthropods and a decline in the number of arthropod species. In small O. biennis populations, genetic drift is predicted to swamp out the effects of selection, making the evolution of plant populations unpredictable. In short, evolution by natural selection can play an important role in affecting the dynamics of communities, but these effects depend on several ecological factors. The framework presented here is general and can be applied to other systems to

  4. Ecological and economic interests in design process of thermal power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sander, M.

    1996-01-01

    In design process of thermal power plant various ecological and economic contradictory interests are brought in focus. Requests on environmental protection written in laws, standards and international treaties are increasing investment costs and energy production costs. In a design phase there is a task to reconcile these contradictory requests. The paper presents relationship between technology and environmental protection with a focus on air pollution. Air pollution and human health is considered taking in account the role of design phase in thermal power plants project and human health problems. International laws and standards are presented with moral dilemmas concerning low investment costs and high environmental standards. (author)

  5. Global Invader Impact Network (GIIN): toward standardized evaluation of the ecological impacts of invasive plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barney, Jacob N; Tekiela, Daniel R; Barrios-Garcia, Maria Noelia; Dimarco, Romina D; Hufbauer, Ruth A; Leipzig-Scott, Peter; Nuñez, Martin A; Pauchard, Aníbal; Pyšek, Petr; Vítková, Michaela; Maxwell, Bruce D

    2015-07-01

    Terrestrial invasive plants are a global problem and are becoming ubiquitous components of most ecosystems. They are implicated in altering disturbance regimes, reducing biodiversity, and changing ecosystem function, sometimes in profound and irreversible ways. However, the ecological impacts of most invasive plants have not been studied experimentally, and most research to date focuses on few types of impacts, which can vary greatly among studies. Thus, our knowledge of existing ecological impacts ascribed to invasive plants is surprisingly limited in both breadth and depth. Our aim was to propose a standard methodology for quantifying baseline ecological impact that, in theory, is scalable to any terrestrial plant invader (e.g., annual grasses to trees) and any invaded system (e.g., grassland to forest). The Global Invader Impact Network (GIIN) is a coordinated distributed experiment composed of an observational and manipulative methodology. The protocol consists of a series of plots located in (1) an invaded area; (2) an adjacent removal treatment within the invaded area; and (3) a spatially separate uninvaded area thought to be similar to pre-invasion conditions of the invaded area. A standardized and inexpensive suite of community, soil, and ecosystem metrics are collected allowing broad comparisons among measurements, populations, and species. The method allows for one-time comparisons and for long-term monitoring enabling one to derive information about change due to invasion over time. Invader removal plots will also allow for quantification of legacy effects and their return rates, which will be monitored for several years. GIIN uses a nested hierarchical scale approach encompassing multiple sites, regions, and continents. Currently, GIIN has network members in six countries, with new members encouraged. To date, study species include representatives of annual and perennial grasses; annual and perennial forbs; shrubs; and trees. The goal of the GIIN

  6. Integrating plant ecological responses to climate extremes from individual to ecosystem levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felton, Andrew J; Smith, Melinda D

    2017-06-19

    Climate extremes will elicit responses from the individual to the ecosystem level. However, only recently have ecologists begun to synthetically assess responses to climate extremes across multiple levels of ecological organization. We review the literature to examine how plant responses vary and interact across levels of organization, focusing on how individual, population and community responses may inform ecosystem-level responses in herbaceous and forest plant communities. We report a high degree of variability at the individual level, and a consequential inconsistency in the translation of individual or population responses to directional changes in community- or ecosystem-level processes. The scaling of individual or population responses to community or ecosystem responses is often predicated upon the functional identity of the species in the community, in particular, the dominant species. Furthermore, the reported stability in plant community composition and functioning with respect to extremes is often driven by processes that operate at the community level, such as species niche partitioning and compensatory responses during or after the event. Future research efforts would benefit from assessing ecological responses across multiple levels of organization, as this will provide both a holistic and mechanistic understanding of ecosystem responses to increasing climatic variability.This article is part of the themed issue 'Behavioural, ecological and evolutionary responses to extreme climatic events'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  7. HOW ECOLOGICAL ENGINEERING HELPED TO CONTINUE BUILDING AND UPGRADE OF THE OPOLE POWER PLANT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Siuta

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Principles of ecological engineering were applied for upgrading the Opole Power Plant under construction, complete with modern installation to protect the environment. The modernized project was a subject of „Integrated environmental impact assessment of the Opole Power Plant” developed by the Institute of Environmental Protection in 1981. The main issues covered by the impact assessment were presented and discussed at the national scientific conference attended, among others, by the representatives of local community from Opole. The conference was organized by the Polish Society of Ecological Engineering on June 5 and 6, 1992. The main aim of the conference was to identify and deliver as broad as possible analysis of environmental conditions for designing, building and operating coal fired power plants. A secondary goal, though of main concern for the Opole agglomeration, was to evaluate many-sided environmental risks resulting from the construction and operation of the Power Plant. The feasibility of continuing the construction of a power generating facility that meets the requirements of the 21st century was demonstrated by the fact that the Opole Power Plant S.A. was awarded the ISO 14001 - Environmental Management System certificate by the British Standards Institution. Advanced construction of the two consecutive blocks of a combined power of 1800 MW in the Opole Power Plant substantiates the validity and effectiveness of the conference organized in 1992.

  8. [Ecological risk assessment of dam construction for terrestrial plant species in middle reach of Lancangjiang River, Southwest China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Yan; Dong, Shi-Kui; Liu, Shi-Liang; Peng, Ming-Chun; Li, Jin-Peng; Zhao, Qing-He; Zhang, Zhao-Ling

    2012-08-01

    Taking the surrounding areas of Xiaowan Reservoir in the middle reach of Lancangjiang River as study area, and based on the vegetation investigation at three sites including electricity transmission area (site 1), electricity-transfer substation and roadsides to the substation (site 2), and emigration area (site 3) in 1997 (before dam construction), another investigation was conducted on the vegetation composition, plant coverage, and dominant species at the same sites in 2010 (after dam construction), aimed to evaluate the ecological risk of the dam construction for the terrestrial plant species in middle reach of Lancangjiang River. There was an obvious difference in the summed dominance ratio of dominant species at the three sites before and after the dam construction. According the types of species (dominant and non-dominant species) and the changes of plant dominance, the ecological risk (ER) for the plant species was categorized into 0 to IV, i.e., no or extremely low ecological risk (0), low ecological risk (I), medium ecological risk (II), high ecological risk (III), and extremely high ecological risk (IV). As affected by the dam construction, the majority of the species were at ER III, and a few species were at ER IV. The percentage of the plant species at ER III and ER IV at site 3 was higher than that at sites 1 and 2. The decrease or loss of native plants and the increase of alien or invasive plants were the major ecological risks caused by the dam construction. Effective protection strategies should be adopted to mitigate the ecological risk of the dam construction for the terrestrial plants at species level.

  9. Non-linear effects of drought under shade: reconciling physiological and ecological models in plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmgren, Milena; Gómez-Aparicio, Lorena; Quero, José Luis; Valladares, Fernando

    2012-06-01

    The combined effects of shade and drought on plant performance and the implications for species interactions are highly debated in plant ecology. Empirical evidence for positive and negative effects of shade on the performance of plants under dry conditions supports two contrasting theoretical models about the role of shade under dry conditions: the trade-off and the facilitation hypotheses. We performed a meta-analysis of field and greenhouse studies evaluating the effects of drought at two or more irradiance levels on nine response variables describing plant physiological condition, growth, and survival. We explored differences in plant response across plant functional types, ecosystem types and methodological approaches. The data were best fit using quadratic models indicating a humped-back shape response to drought along an irradiance gradient for survival, whole plant biomass, maximum photosynthetic capacity, stomatal conductance and maximal photochemical efficiency. Drought effects were ameliorated at intermediate irradiance, becoming more severe at higher or lower light levels. This general pattern was maintained when controlling for potential variations in the strength of the drought treatment among light levels. Our quantitative meta-analysis indicates that dense shade ameliorates drought especially among drought-intolerant and shade-tolerant species. Wet tropical species showed larger negative effects of drought with increasing irradiance than semiarid and cold temperate species. Non-linear responses to irradiance were stronger under field conditions than under controlled greenhouse conditions. Non-linear responses to drought along the irradiance gradient reconciliate opposing views in plant ecology, indicating that facilitation is more likely within certain range of environmental conditions, fading under deep shade, especially for drought-tolerant species.

  10. Plant-associated microbiomes in arid lands: diversity, ecology and biotechnological potential

    KAUST Repository

    Soussi, Asma

    2015-08-28

    Background: Aridification is a worldwide serious threat directly affecting agriculture and crop production. In arid and desert areas, it has been found that microbial diversity is huge, built of microorganisms able to cope with the environmental harsh conditions by developing adaptation strategies. Plants growing in arid lands or regions facing prolonged abiotic stresses such as water limitation and salt accumulation have also developed specific physiological and molecular stress responses allowing them to thrive under normally unfavorable conditions. Scope: Under such extreme selection pressures, special root-associated bacterial assemblages, endowed with capabilities of plant growth promotion (PGP) and extremophile traits, are selected by the plants. In this review, we provide a general overview on the microbial diversity in arid lands and deserts versus specific microbial assemblages associated with plants. The ecological drivers that shape this diversity, how plant-associated microbiomes are selected, and their biotechnological potential are discussed. Conclusions: Selection and recruitment of the plant associated bacterial assemblages is mediated by the combination of the bio-pedo-agroclimatic conditions and the plant species or varieties. Diversity and functional redundancy of these associated PGPR makes them very active in supporting plant improvement, health and resistance to drought, salt and related stresses. Implementing proper biotechnological applications of the arid and desert-adapted PGPR constitute the challenge to be raised.

  11. Non-indigenous plant species and their ecological range in Central European pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) forests

    OpenAIRE

    Zerbe , Stefan; Wirth , Petra

    2006-01-01

    International audience; In this study, forest ecosystems were analysed with regard to the occurrence and ecological range of non-indigenous plant species. Pine forests in the NE German lowland, which naturally and anthropogenically occur on a broad range of different sites, were taken as an example. The analysis is based on a data set of about 2 300 vegetation plots. The ecological range was assessed applying Ellenberg's ecological indicator values. Out of a total of 362 taxa recorded in the ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin A. Mörsdorf

    2015-03-01

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

  14. Genome-Wide Association Studies In Plant Pathosystems: Toward an Ecological Genomics Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Bartoli

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The emergence and re-emergence of plant pathogenic microorganisms are processes that imply perturbations in both host and pathogen ecological niches. Global change is largely assumed to drive the emergence of new etiological agents by altering the equilibrium of the ecological habitats which in turn places hosts more in contact with pathogen reservoirs. In this context, the number of epidemics is expected to increase dramatically in the next coming decades both in wild and crop plants. Under these considerations, the identification of the genetic variants underlying natural variation of resistance is a pre-requisite to estimate the adaptive potential of wild plant populations and to develop new breeding resistant cultivars. On the other hand, the prediction of pathogen's genetic determinants underlying disease emergence can help to identify plant resistance alleles. In the genomic era, whole genome sequencing combined with the development of statistical methods led to the emergence of Genome Wide Association (GWA mapping, a powerful tool for detecting genomic regions associated with natural variation of disease resistance in both wild and cultivated plants. However, GWA mapping has been less employed for the detection of genetic variants associated with pathogenicity in microbes. Here, we reviewed GWA studies performed either in plants or in pathogenic microorganisms (bacteria, fungi and oomycetes. In addition, we highlighted the benefits and caveats of the emerging joint GWA mapping approach that allows for the simultaneous identification of genes interacting between genomes of both partners. Finally, based on co-evolutionary processes in wild populations, we highlighted a phenotyping-free joint GWA mapping approach as a promising tool for describing the molecular landscape underlying plant - microbe interactions.

  15. Troublesome toxins: time to re-think plant-herbivore interactions in vertebrate ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Zhilan

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Earlier models of plant-herbivore interactions relied on forms of functional response that related rates of ingestion by herbivores to mechanical or physical attributes such as bite size and rate. These models fail to predict a growing number of findings that implicate chemical toxins as important determinants of plant-herbivore dynamics. Specifically, considerable evidence suggests that toxins set upper limits on food intake for many species of herbivorous vertebrates. Herbivores feeding on toxin-containing plants must avoid saturating their detoxification systems, which often occurs before ingestion rates are limited by mechanical handling of food items. In light of the importance of plant toxins, a new approach is needed to link herbivores to their food base. We discuss necessary features of such an approach, note recent advances in herbivore functional response models that incorporate effects of plant toxins, and mention predictions that are consistent with observations in natural systems. Future ecological studies will need to address explicitly the importance of plant toxins in shaping plant and herbivore communities.

  16. Troublesome toxins: Time to re-think plant-herbivore interactions in vertebrate ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swihart, R.K.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Feng, Z.; Bryant, J.P.

    2009-01-01

    Earlier models of plant-herbivore interactions relied on forms of functional response that related rates of ingestion by herbivores to mechanical or physical attributes such as bite size and rate. These models fail to predict a growing number of findings that implicate chemical toxins as important determinants of plant-herbivore dynamics. Specifically, considerable evidence suggests that toxins set upper limits on food intake for many species of herbivorous vertebrates. Herbivores feeding on toxin-containing plants must avoid saturating their detoxification systems, which often occurs before ingestion rates are limited by mechanical handling of food items. In light of the importance of plant toxins, a new approach is needed to link herbivores to their food base. We discuss necessary features of such an approach, note recent advances in herbivore functional response models that incorporate effects of plant toxins, and mention predictions that are consistent with observations in natural systems. Future ecological studies will need to address explicitly the importance of plant toxins in shaping plant and herbivore communities.

  17. Complex Outcomes from Insect and Weed Control with Transgenic Plants: Ecological Surprises?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Bøhn

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Agriculture is fundamental for human survival through food production and is performed in ecosystems that, while simplified, still operate along ecological principles and retain complexity. Agricultural plants are thus part of ecological systems, and interact in complex ways with the surrounding terrestrial, soil, and aquatic habitats. We discuss three case studies that demonstrate how agricultural solutions to pest and weed control, if they overlook important ecological and evolutionary factors, cause “surprises”: (i the fast emergence of resistance against the crop-inserted Bt-toxin in South Africa, (ii the ecological changes generated by Bt-cotton landscapes in China, and (iii the decline of the monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus, in North America. The recognition that we work with complex systems is in itself important, as it should limit the belief in reductionist solutions. Agricultural practices lacking eco-evolutionary understanding result in “surprises” like resistance evolution both in weeds and pest insects, risking the reappearance of the “pesticide treadmill”—with increased use of toxic pesticides as the follow-up. We recommend prioritization of research that counteracts the tendencies of reductionist approaches. These may be beneficial on a short term, but with trade-off costs on a medium- to long-term. Such costs include loss of biodiversity, ecosystem services, long-term soil productivity, pollution, and reduced food quality.

  18. The movement ecology and dynamics of plant communities in fragmented landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damschen, Ellen I; Brudvig, Lars A; Haddad, Nick M; Levey, Douglas J; Orrock, John L; Tewksbury, Joshua J

    2008-12-09

    A conceptual model of movement ecology has recently been advanced to explain all movement by considering the interaction of four elements: internal state, motion capacity, navigation capacities, and external factors. We modified this framework to generate predictions for species richness dynamics of fragmented plant communities and tested them in experimental landscapes across a 7-year time series. We found that two external factors, dispersal vectors and habitat features, affected species colonization and recolonization in habitat fragments and their effects varied and depended on motion capacity. Bird-dispersed species richness showed connectivity effects that reached an asymptote over time, but no edge effects, whereas wind-dispersed species richness showed steadily accumulating edge and connectivity effects, with no indication of an asymptote. Unassisted species also showed increasing differences caused by connectivity over time, whereas edges had no effect. Our limited use of proxies for movement ecology (e.g., dispersal mode as a proxy for motion capacity) resulted in moderate predictive power for communities and, in some cases, highlighted the importance of a more complete understanding of movement ecology for predicting how landscape conservation actions affect plant community dynamics.

  19. The plant phenology monitoring design for the National Ecological Observatory Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmendorf, Sarah C; Jones, Katherine D; Cook, Benjamin I.; Diez, Jeffrey M.; Enquist, Carolyn A.F.; Hufft, Rebecca A.; Jones, Matthew O.; Mazer, Susan J.; Miller-Rushing, Abraham J.; Moore, David J. P.; Schwartz, Mark D.; Weltzin, Jake F.

    2016-01-01

    Phenology is an integrative science that comprises the study of recurring biological activities or events. In an era of rapidly changing climate, the relationship between the timing of those events and environmental cues such as temperature, snowmelt, water availability or day length are of particular interest. This article provides an overview of the plant phenology sampling which will be conducted by the U.S. National Ecological Observatory Network NEON, the resulting data, and the rationale behind the design. Trained technicians will conduct regular in situ observations of plant phenology at all terrestrial NEON sites for the 30-year life of the observatory. Standardized and coordinated data across the network of sites can be used to quantify the direction and magnitude of the relationships between phenology and environmental forcings, as well as the degree to which these relationships vary among sites, among species, among phenophases, and through time. Vegetation at NEON sites will also be monitored with tower-based cameras, satellite remote sensing and annual high-resolution airborne remote sensing. Ground-based measurements can be used to calibrate and improve satellite-derived phenometrics. NEON’s phenology monitoring design is complementary to existing phenology research efforts and citizen science initiatives throughout the world and will produce interoperable data. By collocating plant phenology observations with a suite of additional meteorological, biophysical and ecological measurements (e.g., climate, carbon flux, plant productivity, population dynamics of consumers) at 47 terrestrial sites, the NEON design will enable continentalscale inference about the status, trends, causes and ecological consequences of phenological change.

  20. Advanced ecological and economical power plant technology based on CFB combustion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Samant, G.; Hirschfelder, H.

    1993-01-01

    The scenario of the power plant industry is worldwide affected by one important issue, namely the stringent and steadily increasing environment regulations. Fluidized bed boilers, based on Circulating Fluidized Bed (CFB) technology with in-situ emission control, and improved economics as well as with proven record of high efficiency and reliability meets the ecological, economical and technical requirements. It should be noted that in addition to their attractive performance, regarding efficiency and pollution control, coal fired CFB boilers have been successfully introduced not only in power plant industry, but also in other industrial units such as chemical plants, automobile industry, paper mills, cement, etc. The experience gained to date confirms the advantages and also the reliability of this technology. (author)

  1. Methodologies for assessment of power plant ecological effects in the marine environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adams, S.M.

    1978-01-01

    Various types of models or methodologies relevant to the assessment of entrainment, thermal, and impingement impacts of power plant operation in the marine environment are presented. The majority of methodologies available for assessing power plant effects are focused at the organism or population level. The most widely applied approaches for estimating entrainment effects on fish populations are the equivalent adult and trophic-conversion methodologies. Current methods to predict the number of fish and distribution of species impinged consider physical factors of the environment but not the biological or behavorial characteristics of fish. With proper validation, ecosystem-level models that consider aggregate responses of biological components to stress may prove to be a viable approach for investigating power plant ecological effects

  2. Ecological modules and roles of species in heathland plant-insect flower visitor networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dupont, Yoko; Olesen, Jens Mogens

    2009-01-01

    1.  Co-existing plants and flower-visiting animals often form complex interaction networks. A long-standing question in ecology and evolutionary biology is how to detect nonrandom subsets (compartments, blocks, modules) of strongly interacting species within such networks. Here we use a network...... analytical approach to (i) detect modularity in pollination networks, (ii) investigate species composition of modules, and (iii) assess the stability of modules across sites. 2.  Interactions between entomophilous plants and their flower-visitors were recorded throughout the flowering season at three...... heathland sites in Denmark, separated by ≥ 10 km. Among sites, plant communities were similar, but composition of flower-visiting insect faunas differed. Visitation frequencies of visitor species were recorded as a measure of insect abundance. 3.  Qualitative (presence-absence) interaction networks were...

  3. Ecological status of high altitude medicinal plants and their sustainability: Lingshi, Bhutan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakey; Dorji, Kinley

    2016-10-11

    Human beings use plants for a multitude of purposes of which a prominent one across the globe is for their medicinal values. Medicinal plants serve as one of the major sources of income for high altitude inhabitants in the Himalaya, particularly in countries like Nepal, and Bhutan. People here harvest huge volumes of medicinal plants indiscriminately, risking their sustainability. This paper attempts to identify some of the priority medicinal plant species harvested in the wild and assess their ecological status for their judicious utilization, and to help provide policy guidance for possible domestication and support strategic conservation frameworks. Out of the 16 priority species identified by the expert group, collectors' perception on ecological status of the priority species differed from survey findings. Chrysosplenium nudicaule (clumps) ranked as most threatened species followed by Corydalis dubia, and Meconopsis simplicifolia. Onosma hookeri, Corydalis crispa and Delphinium glaciale were some of the species ranked as threatened species followed by Halenia elliptica (not in priority list). Percent relative abundance showed irregular pattern of species distribution. High species evenness was recorded among Nardostachys grandiflora, Chrysosplenium nudicaule, Saussurea gossypiphora and Aconitum orochryseum with average species density of 8 plant m -2 . Rhodiola crenulata, and Dactylorhiza hatagirea followed by Meconopsis horridula and Meconopsis simplicifolia were ranked as most threatened species with average species density of 0.4, 0.4, 5.6 and 6.0 plant m -2 , respectively. The most abundant (common) species was Onosma hookeri (plant m -2 ). Species composition and density also differed with vegetation, altitude, slope and its aspects. Priority species identified by expert group were found vulnerable and patchy in distribution. Survey results and collectors' perceptions tally to an extent. Some of the species (Dactylorhiza hatagirea, Rhodiola crenulata

  4. Plant species effects on soil nutrients and chemistry in arid ecological zones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Brittany G; Verburg, Paul S J; Arnone, John A

    2016-09-01

    The presence of vegetation strongly influences ecosystem function by controlling the distribution and transformation of nutrients across the landscape. The magnitude of vegetation effects on soil chemistry is largely dependent on the plant species and the background soil chemical properties of the site, but has not been well quantified along vegetation transects in the Great Basin. We studied the effects of plant canopy cover on soil chemistry within five different ecological zones, subalpine, montane, pinyon-juniper, sage/Mojave transition, and desert shrub, in the Great Basin of Nevada all with similar underlying geology. Although plant species differed in their effects on soil chemistry, the desert shrubs Sarcobatus vermiculatus, Atriplex spp., Coleogyne ramosissima, and Larrea tridentata typically exerted the most influence on soil chemistry, especially amounts of K(+) and total nitrogen, beneath their canopies. However, the extent to which vegetation affected soil nutrient status in any given location was not only highly dependent on the species present, and presumably the nutrient requirements and cycling patterns of the plant species, but also on the background soil characteristics (e.g., parent material, weathering rates, leaching) where plant species occurred. The results of this study indicate that the presence or absence of a plant species, especially desert shrubs, could significantly alter soil chemistry and subsequently ecosystem biogeochemistry and function.

  5. Invasive Plants Field and Reference Guide: An Ecological Perspective of Plant Invaders of Forests and Woodlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cynthia D. Huebner; Cassandra Olson; Heather C. Smith; Heather C. Smith

    2005-01-01

    There are many field guides available about invasive plants and their identification. The purpose of this particular field guide is to give a scientific synthesis of what is known about the behavior of such species in managed, disturbed, and pristine forested systems in addition to key information for accurate identification.

  6. Pollinator-driven ecological speciation in plants: new evidence and future perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Niet, Timotheüs; Peakall, Rod; Johnson, Steven D

    2014-01-01

    The hypothesis that pollinators have been important drivers of angiosperm diversity dates back to Darwin, and remains an important research topic today. Mounting evidence indicates that pollinators have the potential to drive diversification at several different stages of the evolutionary process. Microevolutionary studies have provided evidence for pollinator-mediated floral adaptation, while macroevolutionary evidence supports a general pattern of pollinator-driven diversification of angiosperms. However, the overarching issue of whether, and how, shifts in pollination system drive plant speciation represents a critical gap in knowledge. Bridging this gap is crucial to fully understand whether pollinator-driven microevolution accounts for the observed macroevolutionary patterns. Testable predictions about pollinator-driven speciation can be derived from the theory of ecological speciation, according to which adaptation (microevolution) and speciation (macroevolution) are directly linked. This theory is a particularly suitable framework for evaluating evidence for the processes underlying shifts in pollination systems and their potential consequences for the evolution of reproductive isolation and speciation. This Viewpoint paper focuses on evidence for the four components of ecological speciation in the context of plant-pollinator interactions, namely (1) the role of pollinators as selective agents, (2) floral trait divergence, including the evolution of 'pollination ecotypes', (3) the geographical context of selection on floral traits, and (4) the role of pollinators in the evolution of reproductive isolation. This Viewpoint also serves as the introduction to a Special Issue on Pollinator-Driven Speciation in Plants. The 13 papers in this Special Issue range from microevolutionary studies of ecotypes to macroevolutionary studies of historical ecological shifts, and span a wide range of geographical areas and plant families. These studies further illustrate

  7. Hydroelectric plants: economical and ecological consequences of equipment and exploitation variants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maire, P.; Bansard, J.F.; Do, T.

    1995-01-01

    The increasing number of renewal demands for hydroelectric plants authorizations has raised the question of the pertinency and efficiency of the equipments used. Choices are rarely clearly justified by the petitioners. After reminding the reasons and consequences of a given choice and equipment, the necessary steps of an authorization demand are illustrated by a concrete case. It shows that some equipment-management combinations can lead to a more satisfying economical and ecological balance-sheet than those generally proposed. The popularization of computer use allows the examining services to dispose of clear and pedagogical elements to select the regular choices. (J.S.). 10 refs., 11 figs., 2 tabs

  8. Pollinator-driven ecological speciation in plants: new evidence and future perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Niet, Timotheüs; Peakall, Rod; Johnson, Steven D.

    2014-01-01

    Background The hypothesis that pollinators have been important drivers of angiosperm diversity dates back to Darwin, and remains an important research topic today. Mounting evidence indicates that pollinators have the potential to drive diversification at several different stages of the evolutionary process. Microevolutionary studies have provided evidence for pollinator-mediated floral adaptation, while macroevolutionary evidence supports a general pattern of pollinator-driven diversification of angiosperms. However, the overarching issue of whether, and how, shifts in pollination system drive plant speciation represents a critical gap in knowledge. Bridging this gap is crucial to fully understand whether pollinator-driven microevolution accounts for the observed macroevolutionary patterns. Testable predictions about pollinator-driven speciation can be derived from the theory of ecological speciation, according to which adaptation (microevolution) and speciation (macroevolution) are directly linked. This theory is a particularly suitable framework for evaluating evidence for the processes underlying shifts in pollination systems and their potential consequences for the evolution of reproductive isolation and speciation. Scope This Viewpoint paper focuses on evidence for the four components of ecological speciation in the context of plant-pollinator interactions, namely (1) the role of pollinators as selective agents, (2) floral trait divergence, including the evolution of ‘pollination ecotypes‘, (3) the geographical context of selection on floral traits, and (4) the role of pollinators in the evolution of reproductive isolation. This Viewpoint also serves as the introduction to a Special Issue on Pollinator-Driven Speciation in Plants. The 13 papers in this Special Issue range from microevolutionary studies of ecotypes to macroevolutionary studies of historical ecological shifts, and span a wide range of geographical areas and plant families. These studies

  9. Ecological investigations at power plant cooling lakes, reservoirs, and ponds: an annotated bibliography. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yost, F.E.; Talmage, S.S.

    1981-06-01

    Presented as an annotated bibliography are 541 references dealing with ecological investigations at power plants which use cooling lakes, ponds, or reservoirs. The references were obtained from open literature and from environmental reports and impact statements prepared for or by the electric utility industry. The literature covers the period 1950 through mid-1980. Topics covered include site-specific studies at facilities using cooling lakes, ponds, or reservoirs, as well as special studies, engineering studies, and general studies. References are arranged alphabetically by author and indexes are provided to personal and corporate authors, facility names, regions, and taxonomic names

  10. Ecological functions of Trichoderma spp. and their secondary metabolites in the rhizosphere: interactions with plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras-Cornejo, Hexon Angel; Macías-Rodríguez, Lourdes; del-Val, Ek; Larsen, John

    2016-04-01

    Trichodermaspp. are common soil and root inhabitants that have been widely studied due to their capacity to produce antibiotics, parasitize other fungi and compete with deleterious plant microorganisms. These fungi produce a number of secondary metabolites such as non-ribosomal peptides, terpenoids, pyrones and indolic-derived compounds. In the rhizosphere, the exchange and recognition of signaling molecules byTrichodermaand plants may alter physiological and biochemical aspects in both. For example, severalTrichodermastrains induce root branching and increase shoot biomass as a consequence of cell division, expansion and differentiation by the presence of fungal auxin-like compounds. Furthermore,Trichoderma, in association with plant roots, can trigger systemic resistance and improve plant nutrient uptake. The present review describes the most recent advances in understanding the ecological functions ofTrichodermaspp. in the rhizosphere at biochemical and molecular levels with special emphasis on their associations with plants. Finally, through a synthesis of the current body of work, we present potential future research directions on studies related toTrichodermaspp. and their secondary metabolites in agroecosystems. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Combined cycle versus one thousand diesel power plants: pollutant emissions, ecological efficiency and economic analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silveira, Jose Luz; de Carvalho, Joao Andrade; de Castro Villela, Iraides Aparecida

    2007-01-01

    The increase in the use of natural gas in Brazil has stimulated public and private sectors to analyse the possibility of using combined cycle systems for generation of electrical energy. Gas turbine combined cycle power plants are becoming increasingly common due to their high efficiency, short lead times, and ability to meet environmental standards. Power is produced in a generator linked directly to the gas turbine. The gas turbine exhaust gases are sent to a heat recovery steam generator to produce superheated steam that can be used in a steam turbine to produce additional power. In this paper a comparative study between a 1000 MW combined cycle power plant and 1000kW diesel power plant is presented. In first step, the energetic situation in Brazil, the needs of the electric sector modification and the needs of demand management and integrated means planning are clarified. In another step the characteristics of large and small thermoelectric power plants that use natural gas and diesel fuel, respectively, are presented. The ecological efficiency levels of each type of power plant is considered in the discussion, presenting the emissions of particulate material, sulphur dioxide (SO 2 ), carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) and nitrogen oxides (NO x ). (author)

  12. The estimate of ecological risk for ground ecosystems in case of nuclear power plant failures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kremlenkov, D.Y.; Kremlenkov, M.Y.

    2003-01-01

    Full text: The stochastic nature of radiation damage generates a need of forecasting information about possible consequences for environment and people. In this article it is given the estimate of probable damage to forest-and agricultural ecosystems from radionuclide emergency pollution in case of nuclear plant failures (for early emergency period). This estimate is based on radio-ecological risk conception which provide with the application of radioactive substances distribution models in atmosphere, as were calculation of absorbent radiation dose in critical ecosystem groups-calculation of probable area of lost ecosystems has been done by using the program written in Pascal. The quantitative estimate of environmental loss has been conducted for diverse classes of atmospheric stability. The value of ecological dose range (ELD) to coniferous forest is 30 Gy, deciduous forest - 300 Gy, agricultural crop - 60 Gy. The value of minimum ecological dose range (MELD) for all ecosystems is 10 Gy. In dose spread from MELD to ELD the ecological damage is proportional to absorbed dose. The ecological damage to ground ecosystems caused by cesium-137 and strontium-90 emergency pollution is primarily depended on the scale of radionuclide emergency pollution as well as weather conditions and radio-stability of critical vegetal ecosystem groups. On the assumption of a dose spread from MELD to ELD, ecological risk defined in probable ecosystem's destruction area is estimated: for cesium-137 pollution about 2 % of coniferous forest and from 4 to 9 % of deciduous forest; for strontium-90 pollution from 2 to 4 % of agricultural crop. As the scale of cesium-137 emergency pollution rise from 10 4 to 10 5 Cu the probable damage determined in ecosystem's destruction area increase 12-19 times to coniferous forest ecosystem and 15-36 times to deciduous forest according to weather conditions. The probable damage to coniferous and deciduous forest rise 11-17 times in proportion as the scale

  13. Revisiting the evolution of ecological specialization, with emphasis on insect-plant interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forister, M L; Dyer, L A; Singer, M S; Stireman, J O; Lill, J T

    2012-05-01

    Ecological specialization is a fundamental and well-studied concept, yet its great reach and complexity limit current understanding in important ways. More than 20 years after the publication of D. J. Futuyma and G. Moreno's oft-cited, major review of the topic, we synthesize new developments in the evolution of ecological specialization. Using insect-plant interactions as a model, we focus on important developments in four critical areas: genetic architecture, behavior, interaction complexity, and macroevolution. We find that theory based on simple genetic trade-offs in host use is being replaced by more subtle and complex pictures of genetic architecture, and multitrophic interactions have risen as a necessary framework for understanding specialization. A wealth of phylogenetic data has made possible a more detailed consideration of the macroevolutionary dimension of specialization, revealing (among other things) bidirectionality in transitions between generalist and specialist lineages. Technological advances, including genomic sequencing and analytical techniques at the community level, raise the possibility that the next decade will see research on specialization spanning multiple levels of biological organization in non-model organisms, from genes to populations to networks of interactions in natural communities. Finally, we offer a set of research questions that we find to be particularly pressing and fruitful for future research on ecological specialization.

  14. Ecological Insights into the Dynamics of Plant Biomass-Degrading Microbial Consortia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez, Diego Javier; Dini-Andreote, Francisco; DeAngelis, Kristen M; Singer, Steven W; Salles, Joana Falcão; van Elsas, Jan Dirk

    2017-10-01

    Plant biomass (PB) is an important resource for biofuel production. However, the frequent lack of efficiency of PB saccharification is still an industrial bottleneck. The use of enzyme cocktails produced from PB-degrading microbial consortia (PB-dmc) is a promising approach to optimize this process. Nevertheless, the proper use and manipulation of PB-dmc depends on a sound understanding of the ecological processes and mechanisms that exist in these communities. This Opinion article provides an overview of arguments as to how spatiotemporal nutritional fluxes influence the successional dynamics and ecological interactions (synergism versus competition) between populations in PB-dmc. The themes of niche occupancy, 'sugar cheaters', minimal effective consortium, and the Black Queen Hypothesis are raised as key subjects that foster our appraisal of such systems. Here we provide a conceptual framework that describes the critical topics underpinning the ecological basis of PB-dmc, giving a solid foundation upon which further prospective experimentation can be developed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Ecological and evolutionary dynamics of a model facultative pathogen: Agrobacterium and crown gall disease of plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barton, Ian S; Fuqua, Clay; Platt, Thomas G

    2018-01-01

    Many important pathogens maintain significant populations in highly disparate disease and non-disease environments. The consequences of this environmental heterogeneity in shaping the ecological and evolutionary dynamics of these facultative pathogens are incompletely understood. Agrobacterium tumefaciens, the causative agent for crown gall disease of plants has proven a productive model for many aspects of interactions between pathogens and their hosts and with other microbes. In this review, we highlight how this past work provides valuable context for the use of this system to examine how heterogeneity and transitions between disease and non-disease environments influence the ecology and evolution of facultative pathogens. We focus on several features common among facultative pathogens, such as the physiological remodelling required to colonize hosts from environmental reservoirs and the consequences of competition with host and non-host associated microbiota. In addition, we discuss how the life history of facultative pathogens likely often results in ecological tradeoffs associated with performance in disease and non-disease environments. These pathogens may therefore have different competitive dynamics in disease and non-disease environments and are subject to shifting selective pressures that can result in pathoadaptation or the within-host spread of avirulent phenotypes. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Microbiomes: unifying animal and plant systems through the lens of community ecology theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christian, Natalie; Whitaker, Briana K.; Clay, Keith

    2015-01-01

    The field of microbiome research is arguably one of the fastest growing in biology. Bacteria feature prominently in studies on animal health, but fungi appear to be the more prominent functional symbionts for plants. Despite the similarities in the ecological organization and evolutionary importance of animal-bacterial and plant–fungal microbiomes, there is a general failure across disciplines to integrate the advances made in each system. Researchers studying bacterial symbionts in animals benefit from greater access to efficient sequencing pipelines and taxonomic reference databases, perhaps due to high medical and veterinary interest. However, researchers studying plant–fungal symbionts benefit from the relative tractability of fungi under laboratory conditions and ease of cultivation. Thus each system has strengths to offer, but both suffer from the lack of a common conceptual framework. We argue that community ecology best illuminates complex species interactions across space and time. In this synthesis we compare and contrast the animal-bacterial and plant–fungal microbiomes using six core theories in community ecology (i.e., succession, community assembly, metacommunities, multi-trophic interactions, disturbance, restoration). The examples and questions raised are meant to spark discussion amongst biologists and lead to the integration of these two systems, as well as more informative, manipulatory experiments on microbiomes research. PMID:26441846

  17. Ecology of some mire and bog plant communities in the Western Italian Alps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giorgio BUFFA

    2003-02-01

    Full Text Available During a mire vegetation study, conducted mainly in the subalpine-alpine sector of the Western Italian Alps, the ecology of several plant communities and numerous moss species of this kind of vegetation was evaluated. The study area covered the Piedmontese sector of the Graian Alps, the eastern sector of the Aosta Valley as well as certain localities of the Pennine Alps, the Canavese district and the Maritime Alps. They have a rocky substratum representative of the various regional lithologies and include the main sectors characterised by the highest precipitation. Three hundred and twenty two relevées were made using the phytosociological method and the pH and the conductivity of the water table and its depth were measured directly. Cluster Analysis allowed a classification of the samples and the identification of various groups of plant communities. Ordination performed by DCA and CCA allowed us to identify the ecological features of the various plant communities by using the values of the main environmental parameters, measured directly in the field, and certain climatic parameters (altitude and mean annual precipitation available. The use of climatic parameters is an important result for identifying communities which show greater oceanicity, something that is underlined also by the presence of indicator species such as Sphagnum papillosum and S. subnitens. Furthermore the communities are arranged in a "poor-rich" gradient, and are also profoundly influenced by depth to water table which is inversely correlated to the pH. Therefore we find certain kinds of communities all with a very low water table and which are little affected by its chemistry. Other groups share the fact that the water table is outcropping or near the surface and are distinguishable for their pH values and conductivity. We discuss the different response of the bryophytes and vascular plants of these communities to the environmental parameters considered, in light of their

  18. Small unmanned aerial vehicles (micro-UAVs, drones) in plant ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruzan, Mitchell B; Weinstein, Ben G; Grasty, Monica R; Kohrn, Brendan F; Hendrickson, Elizabeth C; Arredondo, Tina M; Thompson, Pamela G

    2016-09-01

    Low-elevation surveys with small aerial drones (micro-unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs]) may be used for a wide variety of applications in plant ecology, including mapping vegetation over small- to medium-sized regions. We provide an overview of methods and procedures for conducting surveys and illustrate some of these applications. Aerial images were obtained by flying a small drone along transects over the area of interest. Images were used to create a composite image (orthomosaic) and a digital surface model (DSM). Vegetation classification was conducted manually and using an automated routine. Coverage of an individual species was estimated from aerial images. We created a vegetation map for the entire region from the orthomosaic and DSM, and mapped the density of one species. Comparison of our manual and automated habitat classification confirmed that our mapping methods were accurate. A species with high contrast to the background matrix allowed adequate estimate of its coverage. The example surveys demonstrate that small aerial drones are capable of gathering large amounts of information on the distribution of vegetation and individual species with minimal impact to sensitive habitats. Low-elevation aerial surveys have potential for a wide range of applications in plant ecology.

  19. Small unmanned aerial vehicles (micro-UAVs, drones) in plant ecology1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruzan, Mitchell B.; Weinstein, Ben G.; Grasty, Monica R.; Kohrn, Brendan F.; Hendrickson, Elizabeth C.; Arredondo, Tina M.; Thompson, Pamela G.

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Low-elevation surveys with small aerial drones (micro–unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs]) may be used for a wide variety of applications in plant ecology, including mapping vegetation over small- to medium-sized regions. We provide an overview of methods and procedures for conducting surveys and illustrate some of these applications. Methods: Aerial images were obtained by flying a small drone along transects over the area of interest. Images were used to create a composite image (orthomosaic) and a digital surface model (DSM). Vegetation classification was conducted manually and using an automated routine. Coverage of an individual species was estimated from aerial images. Results: We created a vegetation map for the entire region from the orthomosaic and DSM, and mapped the density of one species. Comparison of our manual and automated habitat classification confirmed that our mapping methods were accurate. A species with high contrast to the background matrix allowed adequate estimate of its coverage. Discussion: The example surveys demonstrate that small aerial drones are capable of gathering large amounts of information on the distribution of vegetation and individual species with minimal impact to sensitive habitats. Low-elevation aerial surveys have potential for a wide range of applications in plant ecology. PMID:27672518

  20. Improving intercropping: a synthesis of research in agronomy, plant physiology and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooker, Rob W; Bennett, Alison E; Cong, Wen-Feng; Daniell, Tim J; George, Timothy S; Hallett, Paul D; Hawes, Cathy; Iannetta, Pietro P M; Jones, Hamlyn G; Karley, Alison J; Li, Long; McKenzie, Blair M; Pakeman, Robin J; Paterson, Eric; Schöb, Christian; Shen, Jianbo; Squire, Geoff; Watson, Christine A; Zhang, Chaochun; Zhang, Fusuo; Zhang, Junling; White, Philip J

    2015-04-01

    Intercropping is a farming practice involving two or more crop species, or genotypes, growing together and coexisting for a time. On the fringes of modern intensive agriculture, intercropping is important in many subsistence or low-input/resource-limited agricultural systems. By allowing genuine yield gains without increased inputs, or greater stability of yield with decreased inputs, intercropping could be one route to delivering ‘sustainable intensification’. We discuss how recent knowledge from agronomy, plant physiology and ecology can be combined with the aim of improving intercropping systems. Recent advances in agronomy and plant physiology include better understanding of the mechanisms of interactions between crop genotypes and species – for example, enhanced resource availability through niche complementarity. Ecological advances include better understanding of the context-dependency of interactions, the mechanisms behind disease and pest avoidance, the links between above- and below-ground systems, and the role of microtopographic variation in coexistence. This improved understanding can guide approaches for improving intercropping systems, including breeding crops for intercropping. Although such advances can help to improve intercropping systems, we suggest that other topics also need addressing. These include better assessment of the wider benefits of intercropping in terms of multiple ecosystem services, collaboration with agricultural engineering, and more effective interdisciplinary research.

  1. Exergo-Ecological Assessment of Waste to Energy Plants Supported by Solar Energy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Mendecka

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Hybridization of Waste to Energy (WtE plants with solar facilities can take competing energy technologies and make them complementary. However, realizing the benefits of the solar integration requires careful consideration of its efficiency. To analyse such systems from the point of view of resource efficiency, the pure energy analysis is not sufficient since the quality of particular energy carriers is not evaluated. This work applies the exergo-ecological analysis using the concepts of thermoecological cost (TEC and exergy cost for the performance evaluation of an integrated Solar-Waste to Energy plant scheme, where solar energy is used for steam superheating. Different plant layouts, considering several design steam parameters as well as different solar system configurations, in terms of area of heliostats and size of the thermal storage tank, were studied. The results for the solar integrated plant scheme were compared with the scenarios where superheating is performed fully by a non-renewable energy source. The presented results of exergy cost analysis indicate that the most favorable system is the one supported by non-renewable energy. Such an analysis does not consider the advantage of the use of renewable energy sources. By extending the system boundary to the level of natural resource and applying the thermoecological cost analysis, an opposite result was obtained.

  2. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, M R; Jonckheere, W; Knegt, B; Lemos, F; Liu, J; Schimmel, B C J; Villarroel, C A; Ataide, L M S; Dermauw, W; Glas, J J; Egas, M; Janssen, A; Van Leeuwen, T; Schuurink, R C; Sabelis, M W; Alba, J M

    2015-06-01

    exploitative competition and facilitation within ecological communities "inhabiting" a plant. Herbivores have evolved diverse strategies, which are not mutually exclusive, to decrease the negative effects of plant defences in order to maximize the conversion of plant material into offspring. Numerous adaptations have been found in herbivores, enabling them to dismantle or bypass defensive barriers, to avoid tissues with relatively high levels of defensive chemicals or to metabolize these chemicals once ingested. In addition, some herbivores interfere with the onset or completion of induced plant defences, resulting in the plant's resistance being partly or fully suppressed. The ability to suppress induced plant defences appears to occur across plant parasites from different kingdoms, including herbivorous arthropods, and there is remarkable diversity in suppression mechanisms. Suppression may strongly affect the structure of the food web, because the ability to suppress the activation of defences of a communal host may facilitate competitors, whereas the ability of a herbivore to cope with activated plant defences will not. Further characterization of the mechanisms and traits that give rise to suppression of plant defences will enable us to determine their role in shaping direct and indirect interactions in food webs and the extent to which these determine the coexistence and persistence of species. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Agro-ecological potential of the cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum L.) from a biodiversity perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrader, Stefan; Schorpp, Quentin; Lena Müller, Anna; Dauber, Jens

    2017-04-01

    The cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum L.) is an alternative bioenergy crop that may contribute to a more environmentally friendly production of renewable resources. The potential benefits of the cup plant are the perennial cultivation without tillage and its flowering-characteristics. Hence it can be hypothesized that beneficial organisms are promoted which in turn improves the provision of ecosystem services like soil fertility and pollination. To date biomass production in Germany is based mainly on cropping systems like intensive maize cultivation that bear a risk for biodiversity and ecosystem services. The importance to counteract this development increases considering the large land requirements for significant generation of energy from biomass. To what extent cropping of the cup plant meets the expectations of a sustainable biomass production was investigated within a comprehensive assessment of soil fauna communities (earthworms, collembolans, nematodes) including their functional groups as well as pollinating insects (bees and hoverflies) including the quantification of pollen and nectar in cup-plant cultivation systems with a crop management close to agricultural practice. From the results it became obvious that the cup plant as a bioenergy crop has got the necessary potential to mitigate the negative development of biodiversity and ecosystem services, especially in regions with a large share of maize monocultures. This agro-ecological potential can only be reached if certain agronomic requirements are met, i.e. a late harvest and cultivation periods of at least five years. Under these conditions the landscape context has to be considered. Semi-natural habitats in the surrounding landscape are required for nesting and larval development of wild pollinator groups. The development of biological functions in soil is tied to the land use history i.e. previous land use: Positive developments are expected for conversion of intensively managed crop fields to the

  4. Social and ecological factors in the formation of population health in surveillance zone of nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prilipko, V.A.; Petrichenko, O.O.

    2014-01-01

    Most people of radiation-control area estimated ecological state as safe. Respondents pointed to such ecological factors as radionuclide pollutions, irresponsible ecological behavior of people, Rivne Nuclear Power Plant functioning consequences. The last one affects changes of water sanitation and ecological parameters.There is no significant difference between mental state of people of radiation-control area and control group of people by GHQ-28 indices, by somatization scale, anxiety, social disfunction and reactive anxiety. The living life peculiarities are grounded by double risk: life in conditions of radioactive polluted territory and life in radiation-control area. Authors defined the correlation between mental state and factors that characterize ecological living conditions

  5. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, M. R.; Jonckheere, W.; Knegt, B.; Lemos, F.; Liu, J.; Schimmel, B. C. J.; Villarroel, C. A.; Ataide, L. M. S.; Dermauw, W.; Glas, J. J.; Egas, M.; Janssen, A.; Van Leeuwen, T.; Schuurink, R. C.; Sabelis, M. W.; Alba, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    give rise to exploitative competition and facilitation within ecological communities “inhabiting” a plant. Conclusions Herbivores have evolved diverse strategies, which are not mutually exclusive, to decrease the negative effects of plant defences in order to maximize the conversion of plant material into offspring. Numerous adaptations have been found in herbivores, enabling them to dismantle or bypass defensive barriers, to avoid tissues with relatively high levels of defensive chemicals or to metabolize these chemicals once ingested. In addition, some herbivores interfere with the onset or completion of induced plant defences, resulting in the plant’s resistance being partly or fully suppressed. The ability to suppress induced plant defences appears to occur across plant parasites from different kingdoms, including herbivorous arthropods, and there is remarkable diversity in suppression mechanisms. Suppression may strongly affect the structure of the food web, because the ability to suppress the activation of defences of a communal host may facilitate competitors, whereas the ability of a herbivore to cope with activated plant defences will not. Further characterization of the mechanisms and traits that give rise to suppression of plant defences will enable us to determine their role in shaping direct and indirect interactions in food webs and the extent to which these determine the coexistence and persistence of species. PMID:26019168

  6. Ecological Fitness of Non-vector Planthopper Sogatella furcifera on Rice Plants Infected with Rice Black Streaked Dwarf Virus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-chan HE

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available We evaluated the effects of rice black streak dwarf virus (RBSDV-infested rice plants on the ecological parameters and its relevant defensive and detoxification enzymes of white-backed planthopper (WBPH in laboratory for exploring the relationship between RBSDV and the non-vector planthopper. The results showed that nymph survival rate, female adult weight and fecundity, and egg hatchability of WBPH fed on RBSDV-infested rice plants did not markedly differ from those on healthy plants, whereas the female adult longevity and egg duration significantly shortened on diseased plants. Furthermore, significantly higher activities of defensive enzymes (dismutase, catalase and peroxidase and detoxification enzymes (acetylcholinesterase, carboxylesterase and glutathione S-transferase were found in WBPH adults fed on infected plants. Results implied that infestation by RBSDV increased the ecological fitness of non-vector planthopper population.

  7. Photosynthesis, environmental change, and plant adaptation: Research topics in plant molecular ecology. Summary report of a workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-07-01

    As we approach the 21st Century, it is becoming increasingly clear that human activities, primarily related to energy extraction and use, will lead to marked environmental changes at the local, regional, and global levels. The realized and the potential photosynthetic performance of plants is determined by a combination of intrinsic genetic information and extrinsic environmental factors, especially climate. It is essential that the effects of environmental changes on the photosynthetic competence of individual species, communities, and ecosystems be accurately assessed. From October 24 to 26, 1993, a group of scientists specializing in various aspects of plant science met to discuss how our predictive capabilities could be improved by developing a more rational, mechanistic approach to relating photosynthetic processes to environmental factors. A consensus emerged that achieving this goal requires multidisciplinary research efforts that combine tools and techniques of genetics, molecular biology, biophysics, biochemistry, and physiology to understand the principles, mechanisms, and limitations of evolutional adaptation and physiological acclimation of photosynthetic processes. Many of these basic tools and techniques, often developed in other fields of science, already are available but have not been applied in a coherent, coordinated fashion to ecological research. The efforts of this research program are related to the broader efforts to develop more realistic prognostic models to forecast climate change that include photosynthetic responses and feedbacks at the regional and ecosystem levels.

  8. An ecologically-based method for selecting ecological indicators for assessing risks to biological diversity from genetically-engineered plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andow, D. A.; Lövei, Gabor L; Arpaia, Salvatore

    2013-01-01

    into ecological functional groups and selecting those that deliver the identified environmental values. (3) All of the species or ecosystem processes related to the selected functional groups are identified and (4) multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) is used to rank the indicator endpoint entities, which may...... adverse effects to biological diversity. The approach starts by (1) identifying the local environmental values so the ERA addresses specific concerns associated with local biological diversity. The model simplifies the indicator endpoint selection problem by (2) classifying biological diversity...... be species or ecological processes. MCDA focuses on those species and processes that are critical for the identified ecological functions and are likely to be highly exposed to the GE organism. The highest ranked indicator entities are selected for the next step. (5) Relevant risk hypotheses are identified...

  9. Formation of higher plant component microbial community in closed ecological system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tirranen, L. S.

    2001-07-01

    Closed ecological systems (CES) place at the disposal of a researcher unique possibilities to study the role of microbial communities in individual components and of the entire system. The microbial community of the higher plant component has been found to form depending on specific conditions of the closed ecosystem: length of time the solution is reused, introduction of intrasystem waste water into the nutrient medium, effect of other component of the system, and system closure in terms of gas exchange. The higher plant component formed its own microbial complex different from that formed prior to closure. The microbial complex of vegetable polyculture is more diverse and stable than the monoculture of wheat. The composition of the components' microflora changed, species diversity decreased, individual species of bacteria and fungi whose numbers were not so great before the closure prevailed. Special attention should be paid to phytopathogenic and conditionally pathogenic species of microorganisms potentially hazardous to man or plants and the least controlled in CES. This situation can endanger creation of CES and make conjectural existence of preplanned components, man, specifically, and consequently, of CES as it is.

  10. Ecological investigations on plant associations in differently disturbed heavy-metal contaminated soils of Great Britain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ernst, W

    1968-01-01

    In different areas of Great Britain comparing ecological studies have been made on disturbed and undisturbed heavy metal contaminated soils. In Grizedale (Pennine), sampling of an undisturbed transect having high levels of major nutrients showed marked differentiation within a small area, only related to the plant available levels of zinc, copper, and lead. However, studies on disturbed heavy metal soils and spoil-heaps revealed a low water capacity and a low supply of major nutrients, particularly of N and P. These suggest that here both the enrichment of heavy metals and the considerable decrease of other nutrients are important in determining the heavy metal vegetation, and in maintaining it against other species. The quantity of zinc in plants is not related to the total or plant-available amount of zinc in soil, but confirmed physiological experiments on the influence of phosphorus and different zinc compounds (complexed or inorganic) on the uptake and distribution of zinc in Thlaspi alpestre and Minnartia rerum. Also an antagonism between lead and copper was revealed. 24 references.

  11. Lifestyle of the biotroph Agrobacterium tumefaciens in the ecological niche constructed on its host plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Mula, Almudena; Lang, Julien; Grandclément, Catherine; Naquin, Delphine; Ahmar, Mohammed; Soulère, Laurent; Queneau, Yves; Dessaux, Yves; Faure, Denis

    2018-07-01

    Agrobacterium tumefaciens constructs an ecological niche in its host plant by transferring the T-DNA from its Ti plasmid into the host genome and by diverting the host metabolism. We combined transcriptomics and genetics for understanding the A. tumefaciens lifestyle when it colonizes Arabidopsis thaliana tumors. Transcriptomics highlighted: a transition from a motile to sessile behavior that mobilizes some master regulators (Hfq, CtrA, DivK and PleD); a remodeling of some cell surface components (O-antigen, succinoglucan, curdlan, att genes, putative fasciclin) and functions associated with plant defense (Ef-Tu and flagellin pathogen-associated molecular pattern-response and glycerol-3-phosphate and nitric oxide signaling); and an exploitation of a wide variety of host resources, including opines, amino acids, sugars, organic acids, phosphate, phosphorylated compounds, and iron. In addition, construction of transgenic A. thaliana lines expressing a lactonase enzyme showed that Ti plasmid transfer could escape host-mediated quorum-quenching. Finally, construction of knock-out mutants in A. tumefaciens showed that expression of some At plasmid genes seemed more costly than the selective advantage they would have conferred in tumor colonization. We provide the first overview of A. tumefaciens lifestyle in a plant tumor and reveal novel signaling and trophic interplays for investigating host-pathogen interactions. © 2018 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2018 New Phytologist Trust.

  12. Microbiota of radish plants, cultivated in closed and open ecological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tirranen, L. S.

    It is common knowledge that microorganisms respond to environmental changes faster than other representatives of the living world. The major aim of this work was to examine and analyze the characteristics of the microbiota of radish culture, cultivated in the closed ecological system of human life-support Bios-3 and in an open system in different experiments. Microbial community of near-root, root zone and phyllosphere of radish were studied at the phases of seedlings, root formation, technical ripeness—by washing-off method—like microbiota of the substrate (expanded clay aggregate) and of the seeds of radish culture. Inoculation on appropriate media was made to count total quantity of anaerobic and aerobic bacteria, bacteria of coliform group, spore-forming, Proteus group, fluorescent, phytopathogenic bacteria, growing on Fermi medium, yeasts, microscopic fungi, Actinomyces. It was revealed that formation of the microbiota of radish plants depends on the age, plant cultivation technology and the specific conditions of the closed system. Composition of microbial conveyor-cultivated in phytotrons varied in quality and in quantity with plant growth phases—in the same manner as cultivation of even-aged soil and hydroponics monocultures which was determined by different qualitative and quantitative composition of root emissions in the course of plant vegetation. The higher plant component formed its own microbial complex different from that formed prior to closure. The microbial complex of vegetable polyculture is more diverse and stable than the monoculture of radish. We registered the changes in the species composition and microorganism quantity during plant cultivation in the closed system on a long-used solution. It was demonstrated that during the short-term (7 days) use of the nutrient solution in the experiments without system closing, the species composition of the microbiota of radish plants was more diverse in a multiple-aged vegetable polyculture (61

  13. Ecological Monitoring Program at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant: Second semiannual report, January 1985--June 1985

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fischer, N.T.

    1985-12-01

    This is the second semiannual report of the Ecological Monitoring Program (EMP) at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) project in southeastern New Mexico. The purpose of the EMP is to quantify and assess the impacts of WIPP construction activities on the surrounding ecosystem. The predicted impacts include: (1) alteration of natural habitat, (2) deposition of salt and dust, and (3) increased human activity and noise. This report describes the data collection activities and presents results, analyses, and discussions for the period of January through June, 1985. Also included are data collected prior to this period which were not available for inclusion in the first EMP semiannual report and data collected after this period which provide a more complete basis for the analyses and discussion. The eight subprograms currently active in the EMP are: environmental photography, soil chemistry, soil microbiology, vegetation, wildlife, meteorology, air quality, and water quality. 16 refs., 37 figs., 17 tabs

  14. Invasive plant species in the West Indies: geographical, ecological, and floristic insights.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas-Sandoval, Julissa; Tremblay, Raymond L; Acevedo-Rodríguez, Pedro; Díaz-Soltero, Hilda

    2017-07-01

    The level of invasion (number or proportion of invasive species) in a given area depends on features of the invaded community, propagule pressure, and climate. In this study, we assess the invasive flora of nine islands in the West Indies to identify invasion patterns and evaluate whether invasive species diversity is related to geographical, ecological, and socioeconomic factors. We compiled a database of invasive plant species including information on their taxonomy, origin, pathways of introduction, habitats, and life history. This database was used to evaluate the similarity of invasive floras between islands and to identify invasion patterns at regional (West Indies) and local (island) scales. We found a total of 516 alien plant species that are invasive on at least one of the nine islands studied, with between 24 to 306 invasive species per island. The invasive flora on these islands includes a wide range of taxonomic groups, life forms, and habitats. We detected low similarity in invasive species diversity between islands, with most invasive species (>60%) occurring on a single island and 6% occurring on at least five islands. To assess the importance of different models in predicting patterns of invasive species diversity among islands, we used generalized linear models. Our analyses revealed that invasive species diversity was well predicted by a combination of island area and economic development (gross domestic product per capita and kilometers of paved roadways). Our results provide strong evidence for the roles of geographical, ecological, and socioeconomic factors in determining the distribution and spread of invasive species on these islands. Anthropogenic disturbance and economic development seem to be the major drivers facilitating the spread and predominance of invasive species over native species.

  15. Replication data for: Management, use and ecology of medicinal plants in the degraded dry lands of Tigray, Northern Ethiopia (version 4)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hizikias, Emiru-Birhane; Aynekulu, E.; Mekuria, W.; Endale, D.

    2011-01-01

    An ethnomedicinal study was conducted to document the indigenous medicinal plant knowledge on the management, use, and ecology of locally important medicinal plants in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia. Ethnobotanical data were collected from 250 people, using semi-structured questionnaires, field

  16. Ecological assembly rules in plant communities--approaches, patterns and prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Götzenberger, Lars; de Bello, Francesco; Bråthen, Kari Anne; Davison, John; Dubuis, Anne; Guisan, Antoine; Lepš, Jan; Lindborg, Regina; Moora, Mari; Pärtel, Meelis; Pellissier, Loic; Pottier, Julien; Vittoz, Pascal; Zobel, Kristjan; Zobel, Martin

    2012-02-01

    Understanding how communities of living organisms assemble has been a central question in ecology since the early days of the discipline. Disentangling the different processes involved in community assembly is not only interesting in itself but also crucial for an understanding of how communities will behave under future environmental scenarios. The traditional concept of assembly rules reflects the notion that species do not co-occur randomly but are restricted in their co-occurrence by interspecific competition. This concept can be redefined in a more general framework where the co-occurrence of species is a product of chance, historical patterns of speciation and migration, dispersal, abiotic environmental factors, and biotic interactions, with none of these processes being mutually exclusive. Here we present a survey and meta-analyses of 59 papers that compare observed patterns in plant communities with null models simulating random patterns of species assembly. According to the type of data under study and the different methods that are applied to detect community assembly, we distinguish four main types of approach in the published literature: species co-occurrence, niche limitation, guild proportionality and limiting similarity. Results from our meta-analyses suggest that non-random co-occurrence of plant species is not a widespread phenomenon. However, whether this finding reflects the individualistic nature of plant communities or is caused by methodological shortcomings associated with the studies considered cannot be discerned from the available metadata. We advocate that more thorough surveys be conducted using a set of standardized methods to test for the existence of assembly rules in data sets spanning larger biological and geographical scales than have been considered until now. We underpin this general advice with guidelines that should be considered in future assembly rules research. This will enable us to draw more accurate and general

  17. In-stream contaminant interaction and transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whelan, G.

    1983-07-01

    In order to assess contaminant exposure levels in biotic and abiotic pathways from waste-disposal sites, a comprehensive Multimedia Contaminant Environmental Exposure Assessment (MCEA) methodology using several mathematical models is being developed. Prior to a full development of the proposed methodology, a scaled-down version involving terrestrial plants, overland, and in-stream compartments was applied to an actual shallow land waste-disposal site. The purpose was to evaluate and demonstrate the attributes of the methodology. The in-stream component of the abbreviated methodology as it relates to Mortandad Canyon in Los Alamos, New Mexico is discussed herein. A two-year period was simulated consisting of six major runoff events which possessed a variety of distributions and magnitudes. The in-stream component of the methodology was composed of two models integrated to simulate the migration of radionuclides: DKWAV and TODAM. DKWAV is an unsteady, one-dimensional, second-order, explicit, finite difference, channel flow code which simulates the hydrodynamics in dendritric river systems and includes point and/or continuous lateral inflow and channel seepage. TODAM is an unsteady, one-dimensional, finite element, sediment-contaminant transport code which simulates the migration and fate of sediment and radionuclides in their dissolved and particulate phases by solving the general advection/diffusion equation with sink and source terms

  18. Two-way plant mediated interactions between root-associated microbes and insects: from ecology to mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurmi ePangesti

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Plants are members of complex communities and function as a link between above- and below-ground organisms. Associations between plants and soil-borne microbes commonly occur and have often been found beneficial for plant fitness. Root-associated microbes may trigger physiological changes in the host plant that influence interactions between plants and aboveground insects at several trophic levels. Aboveground, plants are under continuous attack by insect herbivores and mount multiple responses that also have systemic effects on belowground microbes. Until recently, both ecological and mechanistic studies have mostly focused on exploring these below- and above-ground interactions using simplified systems involving both single microbe and herbivore species, which is far from the naturally occurring interactions. Increasing the complexity of the systems studied is required to increase our understanding of microbe - plant - insect interactions and to gain more benefit from the use of non-pathogenic microbes in agriculture. In this review, we explore how colonization by either single non-pathogenic microbe species or a community of such microbes belowground affects plant growth and defense and how this affects the interactions of plants with aboveground insects at different trophic levels. Moreover, we review how plant responses to foliar herbivory by insects belonging to different feeding guilds affect interactions of plants with non-pathogenic soil-borne microbes. The role of phytohormones in coordinating plant growth, plant defenses against foliar herbivores while simultaneously establishing associations with non-pathogenic soil microbes is discussed.

  19. Cytogenetic effects of weak and combined actions in plants in connection with a problem of ecological rating

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geras'kin, S.A.; Dikarev, V.G.; Udalova, A.A.; Dikareva, N.S.; Vasil'ev, D.V.; Evseeva, T.I.

    2002-01-01

    It is compared sanitary-hygienic and ecological approaches to rating of ionizing radiation action. The features of formation of cytogenetic effects in plants in conditions of separate and combined with factors of other nature action of ionizing radiation low doses are considered. (author)

  20. The maximization of the productivity of aquatic plants for use in controlled ecological life support systems (CELSS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, B. G.

    Lemna minor (common duckweed) and a Wolffia sp. were grown in submerged growth systems. Submerged growth increased the productivity/unit volume (P/UV) of the organisms and may allow these plants to be used in a controlled ecological life support system (CELSS).

  1. Current scientific literature on tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois) ecology in Mississippi, and critical information needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Understanding the basic ecological patterns of the tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois), is required for implementing a successful integrated pest management program. As the primary pest of cotton in Mississippi and across the mid-south, L. lineolaris is a highly polyphagous m...

  2. The genetic architecture of a complex ecological trait: host plant use in the specialist moth, HELIOTHIS SUBFLEXA

    Science.gov (United States)

    The study of the genetic basis of ecological adaptation remains in its infancy, and most studies have focused on phenotypically simple traits. Host plant use by herbivorous insects is phenotypically complex. While research has illuminated the evolutionary determinants of host use, knowledge of its...

  3. Ecological half-life of 137Cs in plants associated with a contaminated stream

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peles, John D.; Smith, Michael H.; Lehr Brisbin, I.

    2002-01-01

    Ecological half-life (T e ) is a useful measure for studying the long-term decline of contaminants, such as radionuclides, in natural systems. The current investigation determined levels of radiocesium ( 137 Cs) in two aquatic (Polygonum punctatum, Sagittaria latifolia) and three terrestrial (Alnus serrulata, Myrica cerifera, Salix nigra) plant species from a contaminated stream and floodplain on the U.S. Department of Energy's Savannah River Site. Current 137 Cs levels in plants were used in conjunction with historical data to determine T e of 137 Cs in each species. Median concentrations of 137 Cs were highest in S. latifolia (0.84 Bq g -1 ) and lowest in M. cerifera (0.10 Bq g -1 ). T e 's ranged from 4.85 yr in M. cerifera to 8.35 yr in S. nigra, both terrestrial species. T e 's for all aquatic (6.30 yr) and all terrestrial (5.87) species combined were very similar. The T e 's of the two aquatic primary producers (P. punctatum and S. latifolia) in the Steel Creek ecosystem were somewhat longer than T e values previously reported for some consumers from this ecosystem

  4. Ecology of Legionella within water cooling circuits of nuclear power plants along the French Loire River

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jakubek, Delphine

    2012-01-01

    The cooling circuits of nuclear power plants, by their mode of operating, can select thermophilic microorganisms including the pathogenic organism Legionella pneumophila. To control the development of this genus, a disinfection treatment of water cooling systems with monochloramine can be used. To participate in the management of health and environmental risks associated with the physico-chemical and microbiological modification of water collected from the river, EDF is committed to a process of increasing knowledge about the ecology of Legionella in cooling circuits and its links with its environment (physical, chemical and microbiological) supporting or not their proliferation. Thus, diversity and dynamics of culturable Legionella pneumophila were determined in the four nuclear power plants along the Loire for a year and their links with physico-chemical and microbiological parameters were studied. This study revealed a high diversity of Legionella pneumophila subpopulations and their dynamic seems to be related to the evolution of a small number of subpopulations. Legionella subpopulations seem to maintain strain-specific relationships with biotic parameters and present different sensitivities to physico-chemical variations. The design of cooling circuits could impact the Legionella community. The use of monochloramine severely disrupts the ecosystem but does not select biocide tolerant subpopulations. (author)

  5. Ecological significance and complexity of N-source preference in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britto, Dev T; Kronzucker, Herbert J

    2013-10-01

    Plants can utilize two major forms of inorganic N: NO3(-) (nitrate) and NH4(+) (ammonium). In some cases, the preference of one form over another (denoted as β) can appear to be quite pronounced for a plant species, and can be an important determinant and predictor of its distribution and interactions with other species. In many other cases, however, assignment of preference is not so straightforward and must take into account a wide array of complex physiological and environmental features, which interact in ways that are still not well understood. This Viewpoint presents a discussion of the key, and often co-occurring, factors that join to produce the complex phenotypic composite referred to by the deceptively simple term 'N-source preference'. N-source preference is much more complex a biological phenomenon than is often assumed, and general models predicting how it will influence ecological processes will need to be much more sophisticated than those that have been so far developed.

  6. Effects of Introduced and Indigenous Viruses on Native Plants: Exploring Their Disease Causing Potential at the Agro-Ecological Interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Stuart J.; Coutts, Brenda A.; Jones, Roger A. C.

    2014-01-01

    The ever increasing movement of viruses around the world poses a major threat to plants growing in cultivated and natural ecosystems. Both generalist and specialist viruses move via trade in plants and plant products. Their potential to damage cultivated plants is well understood, but little attention has been given to the threat such viruses pose to plant biodiversity. To address this, we studied their impact, and that of indigenous viruses, on native plants from a global biodiversity hot spot in an isolated region where agriculture is very recent (plant species, we used introduced generalist and specialist viruses, and indigenous viruses, to inoculate plants of 15 native species belonging to eight families. We also measured resulting losses in biomass and reproductive ability for some host–virus combinations. In addition, we sampled native plants growing over a wide area to increase knowledge of natural infection with introduced viruses. The results suggest that generalist introduced viruses and indigenous viruses from other hosts pose a greater potential threat than introduced specialist viruses to populations of native plants encountered for the first time. Some introduced generalist viruses infected plants in more families than others and so pose a greater potential threat to biodiversity. The indigenous viruses tested were often surprisingly virulent when they infected native plant species they were not adapted to. These results are relevant to managing virus disease in new encounter scenarios at the agro-ecological interface between managed and natural vegetation, and within other disturbed natural vegetation situations. They are also relevant for establishing conservation policies for endangered plant species and avoiding spread of damaging viruses to undisturbed natural vegetation beyond the agro-ecological interface. PMID:24621926

  7. Effects of introduced and indigenous viruses on native plants: exploring their disease causing potential at the agro-ecological interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Stuart J; Coutts, Brenda A; Jones, Roger A C

    2014-01-01

    The ever increasing movement of viruses around the world poses a major threat to plants growing in cultivated and natural ecosystems. Both generalist and specialist viruses move via trade in plants and plant products. Their potential to damage cultivated plants is well understood, but little attention has been given to the threat such viruses pose to plant biodiversity. To address this, we studied their impact, and that of indigenous viruses, on native plants from a global biodiversity hot spot in an isolated region where agriculture is very recent (viruses readily. To establish their potential to cause severe or mild systemic symptoms in different native plant species, we used introduced generalist and specialist viruses, and indigenous viruses, to inoculate plants of 15 native species belonging to eight families. We also measured resulting losses in biomass and reproductive ability for some host-virus combinations. In addition, we sampled native plants growing over a wide area to increase knowledge of natural infection with introduced viruses. The results suggest that generalist introduced viruses and indigenous viruses from other hosts pose a greater potential threat than introduced specialist viruses to populations of native plants encountered for the first time. Some introduced generalist viruses infected plants in more families than others and so pose a greater potential threat to biodiversity. The indigenous viruses tested were often surprisingly virulent when they infected native plant species they were not adapted to. These results are relevant to managing virus disease in new encounter scenarios at the agro-ecological interface between managed and natural vegetation, and within other disturbed natural vegetation situations. They are also relevant for establishing conservation policies for endangered plant species and avoiding spread of damaging viruses to undisturbed natural vegetation beyond the agro-ecological interface.

  8. Modelling of thermal processes and optimization of energy-ecology characteristics of the modern boiler plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Filkoski, Risto V.

    2004-01-01

    The investigation accomplished in the framework of this work is concerned with the thermal processes in the furnaces of modern steam and hot-water boilers on fossil fuels. Aerodynamic and thermal conditions in the furnaces are described and models for separate processes and phenomena that occur there are presented. By using proper CFD technique, three-dimensional models of furnaces of coal-fired power boiler, hot-water boiler with circulating fluidized bed combustion and steam boiler on liquid/gaseous fuel are created. Graphical pre-processor is used for geometry creation and mesh generation of the investigated boiler plants. Mathematical model for the gas-solids mixture flow is based on Lagrange approach for the discrete phase simulations, in addition to the transport equations for the gas phase. A standard steady semi-empirical k-E model is employed for description of the turbulent flow. Coupling of velocity and pressure is achieved by the SIMPLEC method. Coal combustion is modelled as non-premixed kinetics/diffusion-limited process by the mixture fraction/probability density function approach for the reaction chemistry, with equilibrium assumption applied for description of the system chemistry. Radiation heat transfer is computed by means of the P-1 model, which is simplified variance of the P-N model, based on the expansion of the radiation intensity into an orthogonal series of spherical harmonics. Presence of discrete solid phase in the main gas stream is effectively taken into consideration through additional terms in the radiation energy transfer equation and in other model equations. Variable emissivity coefficient of the combustion products is modelled with the weighted-sum-of-grey gases-model. A model for NO x formation and reduction is included in the computations. Numerical simulations provide results concerning the boilers operation in several regimes. A methodology for optimisation of energetic-ecological characteristics of boiler plants is proposed

  9. Miscanthus plants used as an alternative biofuel material. The basic studies on ecology and molecular evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chou, Chang-Hung [Graduate Institute of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, College of Life Sciences, China Medical University, Taichung 404 (China)

    2009-08-15

    Miscanthus Anderss, widely distributed in Asia and Pacific Islands, possesses 20 species. Of which 8 species and 1 variety were recorded in Chinese Mainland; 6 species and 1 variety found in Japan; 5 species and 3 varieties distributed in Taiwan; 3 species documented in the Philippines; and rest of species have been recorded in Jawa, eastern Himalaya, and Sikkim. The plant is a C{sub 4} perennial grass with high productivity of biomass. In the 19th and early 20th centuries in Taiwan, Miscanthus was a very important crop used for forage grass, clothing, and shelter, etc. The relatively high germination, and high yield of biomass made the plant available for people of Taiwan including aboriginal. The taxonomic study of Miscanthus plants was much done by several scientists, and its ecological study has been only taken by the present author since 1972. Chou and his associates paid a great attention to elucidate the mechanism of dominance of Miscanthus vegetation and found that allelopathy plays an important role. In addition, the population biology of Miscanthus taxa by using polyacrylamide gel electrophoreses technique to examine the patterns of peroxidase and esterase among populations (over 100) of Miscanthus in Taiwan were conducted. They also elucidated the phylogenetic relationship among species and varieties in Taiwan. Chou and Ueng proposed an evolutionary trend of Miscanthus species, indicating that the Miscanthus sinensis was assumed to be the origin of Miscanthus Anderss, which evolved to M. sinensis var. formosana, and M. sinensis var. flavidus, and M. sinensis var. transmorrisonensis, and Miscanthus floridulus was thought to be an out group of M. sinensis complex. Moreover, molecular phylogeny was attempted to clarify the population heterogeneity of M. sinensis complex, resulting in a substantial information. It would be available for making hybridization between Miscanthus species and its related species, such as Saccharum (sugar cane) spp. which is a

  10. Plant physiological ecology and the global changes Ecofisiologia vegetal e as mudanças globais

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Paulo Rodrigues Alves Delfino Barbosa

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The global changes are marked by alteration on the normal patterns of important biochemical and biophysical processes of the Earth. However, the real effects as well as the feedbacks of the global changes over vegetation are still unclear. Part of this uncertainty can be attributed to the inattention of stakeholders and scientists towards vegetation and its complex interrelations with the environment, which drive plant physiological processes in different space-time scales. Notwithstanding, some key subjects of the global changes could be better elucidated with a more plant physiological ecology approach. We discuss some issues related to this topic, going through some limitations of approaching vegetation as a static component of the biosphere as the other sub-systems of the Earth-system change. With this perspective, this review is an initial reflection towards the assessment of the role and place of vegetation structure and function in the global changes context. We reviewed the Earth-system and global changes terminology; attempted to illustrate key plant physiological ecology researches themes in the global changes context; consider approaching plants as complex systems in order to adequately quantify systems characteristics as sensibility, homeostasis, and vulnerability. Moreover, we propose insights that would allow vegetation studies and scaling procedures in the context of the Earth-system. We hope this review will assist researchers on their strategy to identify, understand and anticipate the potential effects of global changes over the most vulnerable vegetation processes from the leaf to the global levels.As mudanças globais englobam importantes alterações nos padrões normais de processos bioquímicos e biofísicos da Terra. Os reais efeitos e retroalimentações das mudanças globais sobre a vegetação ainda são incertos. Parte das incertezas pode ser atribuída à falta de atenção de cientistas e políticos para a vegeta

  11. Streamlining of plant patches in streams

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kaj Sand; Pedersen, Morten Lauge

    2008-01-01

    . Sediment elevation within patches (avg. 4.1 cm) increased significantly with patch length, but did not differ between unstable sand or more stable coarse sediment for the same patch length. Shape of canopy and root area did not change significantly with sediment type. 4. Pressure drag on the canopy...

  12. Aquatic ecology of the Kadra reservoir, the source of cooling water for Kaiga nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghosh, T.K.; Zargar, S.; Dhopte, R.; Kulkarni, A.; Kaul, S.N.

    2002-01-01

    The study is being conducted since July 2000 to evaluate impact of cooling water discharges from Kaiga Nuclear Power Plant on physicochemical and biological characteristics of Kadra reservoir. Besides marginal decrease of DO, sulfate, nitrate and potassium near discharge point at surface water, abiotic features of the water samples collected from three layers, viz. surface, 3-m depth and bottom at nine locations of the reservoir, did not show remarkable differences with reference to pH, phosphate, conductivity, suspended solids, sodium, hardness, chloride, alkalinity and heavy metals (Cu, Fe, Ni, Zn, Pb, Cd, Cr and Mn). The DT varied between 5 and 8.5 degC at surface water during the study. The abiotic characteristics of the reservoir water meet the specification of drinking water standard of Bureau of Indian Standards. While the counts of phytoplankton and zooplankton were reduced near discharge point, their population at 500 m off the discharge point was comparable to those near dam site at about 11 km down stream from plant site. Plamer's index (0-15) and Shannon's diversity index values (1.39-2.44) of the plankton at different sampling points indicate oligotrophic and semi productive nature of the water body. The total coliform (TC), staphylococcus and heterotrophic counts were, in general, less near discharge point. Based on TC count, the reservoir water, during most of the period, is categorized as 'B' following CPCB classification of surface waters. Generation of data needs to be continued till 2-3 years for statistical interpretation and drawing conclusions pertaining to extent of impact of cooling water discharges on Kadra reservoir ecology. (author)

  13. The Influence of Ecological and Conventional Plant Production Systems on Soil Microbial Quality under Hops (Humulus lupulus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oszust, Karolina; Frąc, Magdalena; Gryta, Agata; Bilińska, Nina

    2014-01-01

    The knowledge about microorganisms—activity and diversity under hop production is still limited. We assumed that, different systems of hop production (within the same soil and climatic conditions) significantly influence on the composition of soil microbial populations and its functional activity (metabolic potential). Therefore, we compared a set of soil microbial properties in the field experiment of two hop production systems (a) ecological based on the use of probiotic preparations and organic fertilization (b) conventional—with the use of chemical pesticides and mineral fertilizers. Soil analyses included following microbial properties: The total number microorganisms, a bunch of soil enzyme activities, the catabolic potential was also assessed following Biolog EcoPlates®. Moreover, the abundance of ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) was characterized by terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis (T-RFLP) of PCR ammonia monooxygenase α-subunit (amoA) gene products. Conventional and ecological systems of hop production were able to affect soil microbial state in different seasonal manner. Favorable effect on soil microbial activity met under ecological, was more probably due to livestock-based manure and fermented plant extracts application. No negative influence on conventional hopyard soil was revealed. Both type of production fulfilled fertilizing demands. Under ecological production it was due to livestock-based manure fertilizers and fermented plant extracts application. PMID:24897025

  14. The Influence of Ecological and Conventional Plant Production Systems on Soil Microbial Quality under Hops (Humulus lupulus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karolina Oszust

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The knowledge about microorganisms—activity and diversity under hop production is still limited. We assumed that, different systems of hop production (within the same soil and climatic conditions significantly influence on the composition of soil microbial populations and its functional activity (metabolic potential. Therefore, we compared a set of soil microbial properties in the field experiment of two hop production systems (a ecological based on the use of probiotic preparations and organic fertilization (b conventional—with the use of chemical pesticides and mineral fertilizers. Soil analyses included following microbial properties: The total number microorganisms, a bunch of soil enzyme activities, the catabolic potential was also assessed following Biolog EcoPlates®. Moreover, the abundance of ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA was characterized by terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis (T-RFLP of PCR ammonia monooxygenase α-subunit (amoA gene products. Conventional and ecological systems of hop production were able to affect soil microbial state in different seasonal manner. Favorable effect on soil microbial activity met under ecological, was more probably due to livestock-based manure and fermented plant extracts application. No negative influence on conventional hopyard soil was revealed. Both type of production fulfilled fertilizing demands. Under ecological production it was due to livestock-based manure fertilizers and fermented plant extracts application.

  15. Ecological profiles of wetland plant species in the northern Apennines (N. Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello TOMASELLI

    2003-02-01

    Full Text Available Eighteen selected species occurring in the wetlands of the northern Apennines were studied by the ecological profile method. By this method, it is possible to identify the ecological factors mostly influencing species distribution within a particular vegetation. Moreover, it is possible to evaluate both ecological amplitude and ecological preferences of species. Ecological profiles were built for three factors (altitude, pH and electrical conductivity from a data set of 265 phytosociological relevés, used for altitude, and from a set of 92 measures, carried out in selected sites, for idrochemical variables. By numerical classification, based on chord distance and minimum variance, the ecological species groups for each factor were individuated. Subsequently, they were ordered by correspondence analysis for detecting relationships between ecological groups and classes of factors. By applying a goodness-of-fit test to ecological profiles, the species significantly deviating from uniformity were detected. They can be regarded as indicators for the corresponding ecological factor. We found seven indicator species for altitude (Carex nigra, C. rostrata, Juncus filiformis, J. alpino-articulatus, Eriophorum latifolium, E. angustifolium and Warnstorfia exannulata, four indicator species for electrical conductivity (Campylium stellatum, Carex tumidicarpa, Eriophorum latifolium and Juncus alpino-articulatus and one indicator species for pH (Sphagnum capillifolium. The ecological profiles of the wetland species in the northern Apennines were compared with those reported in literature for the same species from the Alps (namely Dolomites. In this way, a certain degree of ecological shift in several wetland species of the northern Apennines was documented. For altitude, it is possible to explain the shift considering the reduced elevational amplitude of northern Apennine wetlands with respect to those of the Alps. For pH, Sphagnum capillifolium occurs in

  16. Ecological and economic interests in design process of thermal power plant; Ekoloski i gospodarstveni izazovi pri projektiranju energetskih postrojenja

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sander, M [Elektroprojekt, Zagreb (Croatia)

    1997-12-31

    In design process of thermal power plant various ecological and economic contradictory interests are brought in focus. Requests on environmental protection written in laws, standards and international treaties are increasing investment costs and energy production costs. In a design phase there is a task to reconcile these contradictory requests. The paper presents relationship between technology and environmental protection with a focus on air pollution. Air pollution and human health is considered taking in account the role of design phase in thermal power plants project and human health problems. International laws and standards are presented with moral dilemmas concerning low investment costs and high environmental standards. (author). 6 tabs., 2 figs., 13 refs.

  17. Ecological context of the evolution of self-pollination in Clarkia xantiana: population size, plant communities, and reproductive assurance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moeller, David A; Geber, Monica A

    2005-04-01

    The repeated evolutionary transition from outcrossing to self-pollination in flowering plants has been suggested to occur because selfing provides reproductive assurance. Reports from biogeographical and ecological surveys indicate that selfing taxa are often associated with stressful and ephemeral environments, situations in which plant abundance is low (e.g., Baker's law) and with novel plant communities, however experimental tests of ecological hypotheses are few. In this study, we examined the ecological context of selection on mating system traits (herkogamy and protandry) in a California annual, Clarkia xantiana, where natural selfing populations differ from outcrossing populations in that they are often of small size or low density and occur mainly outside the range of pollinator-sharing congeners. We constructed artificial populations of plants with broad genetic variation in floral traits and manipulated two ecological factors, plant population size, and the presence versus absence of pollinator-sharing congeners, in the center of the geographic range of outcrossing populations. We found evidence for context-dependent selection on herkogamy and protandry via female fitness in which reduced traits, which promote autonomous selfing, were favored in small populations isolated from congeners whereas selection was comparatively weak in large populations or when congeners were present. In small, isolated populations, the fertility of plants with low herkogamy or protandry was elevated by 66% and 58%, respectively, compared to those with high herkogamy or protandry. The presence of pollinator-sharing congeners augmented bee visitation rates to C. xantiana flowers by 47% for all bees and by 93% for pollen specialists. By facilitating pollinator visitation, congeners mitigated selection on mating system traits in small populations, where outcross mating success is often low (the Allee effect). We also found support for the hypothesis that pollinator availability

  18. Ecological trade-offs between jasmonic acid-dependent direct and indirect plant defences in tritrophic interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Jianing; Wang, Lizhong; Zhao, Jiuhai; Li, Chuanyou; Ge, Feng; Kang, Le

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies on plants genetically modified in jasmonic acid (JA) signalling support the hypothesis that the jasmonate family of oxylipins plays an important role in mediating direct and indirect plant defences. However, the interaction of two modes of defence in tritrophic systems is largely unknown. In this study, we examined the preference and performance of a herbivorous leafminer (Liriomyza huidobrensis) and its parasitic wasp (Opius dissitus) on three tomato genotypes: a wild-type (WT) plant, a JA biosynthesis (spr2) mutant, and a JA-overexpression 35S::prosys plant. Their proteinase inhibitor production and volatile emission were used as direct and indirect defence factors to evaluate the responses of leafminers and parasitoids. Here, we show that although spr2 mutant plants are compromised in direct defence against the larval leafminers and in attracting parasitoids, they are less attractive to adult flies compared with WT plants. Moreover, in comparison to other genotypes, the 35S::prosys plant displays greater direct and constitutive indirect defences, but reduced success of parasitism by parasitoids. Taken together, these results suggest that there are distinguished ecological trade-offs between JA-dependent direct and indirect defences in genetically modified plants whose fitness should be assessed in tritrophic systems and under natural conditions. © The Authors (2010). Journal compilation © New Phytologist Trust (2010).

  19. nitrogen saturation in stream ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Earl, S. R.; Valett, H. M.; Webster, J. R.

    2006-01-01

    The concept of nitrogen (N) saturation has organized the assessment of N loading in terrestrial ecosystems. Here we extend the concept to lotic ecosystems by coupling Michaelis-Menten kinetics and nutrient spiraling. We propose a series of saturation response types, which may be used to characterize the proximity of streams to N saturation. We conducted a series of short-term N releases using a tracer ((NO3)-N-15-N) to measure uptake. Experiments were conducted in streams spanning a gradient ...

  20. New Approaches to Ecologically Based, Designed Urban Plant Communities in Britain: Do These Have Any Relevance in the United States?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Hitchmough

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses the reasoning behind the development of a new approach to designed urban planting with grasses, forbs and geophytes that has been undertaken at the University of Sheffield over the past 15 years. The resulting plant communities are the result of applying contemporary ecological science to planting design, to maximize their sustainability while at the same time meeting the aesthetic and functional needs of the users of urban public landscapes. The geographical origin of the plants used in these communities varies according to the physical, ecological, and cultural context in which they are to be used. In some cases species are entirely native, in others entirely non-native. In many cases, a mixture of both is used. In discussing the rationale for the development of this approach in the United Kingdom context, the paper raises important issues about increasing the capacity of urban landscapes to support a greater diversity of native animals and to engage ordinary citizens in these activities at a time of dramatic climatic and social change. The approach we outline addresses some of these issues in the United Kingdom context, but it is uncertain whether there is merit in these approaches in the context of American towns and cities.

  1. Developing remediation criteria on the basis of health and ecological risks at a former sour gas plant site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brown, G. L.; Wilson, R. M.; Clyde, G. A.; Chollak, D. F.

    1997-01-01

    A human health and ecological risk assessment was completed for the Okotoks sour gas processing gas plant, based on the existing environmental sampling and toxicity testing that has been collected at the site since 1987. For the human health risk assessment, two potential scenarios were considered, including industrial use and parkland use. The ecological risk assessment involved synthesis of existing sampling and toxicity testing results as well as the assessment of potential risk to ecological receptors such as the meadow vole, red-tailed hawk and cattle. The assessment included chemical screening, receptor and exposure pathway selection, toxicity assessment of chemicals of concern, estimation of exposures, risk characterization and generation of soil and groundwater remediation criteria. Results of the assessments to date indicate that limited subsurface remediation is required for the protection of human health under industrial/parkland use. In contrast, ecological considerations will require remediation or reclamation of surface soil and the imposition of certain risk management controls, such as e. g. encumbrances on land title. 2 figs

  2. Ecological aspects of the use of fuels and lubricants from plant and animal sources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fuks, I.G.; Evdokimov, A.Yu.; Dzhamalov, A.A.

    1993-01-01

    In attacking the problems involved in preventing or mitigating the growing ecological crisis and its consequences, the leading place is occupied by the search for an alternative ecologically clean raw material for the production of various types of energy and the manufacture of chemical products. Fuels and lubricants, whether of petroleum or synthetic origin, pose a significant threat to the environment. Here, the authors are generally speaking of ecologically dangerous products, but in many cases even toxic products. They pollute the air, soil, and water with automotive exhaust, spills of used oils, and the incineration and burial of wastes. Vegetable and animal fats do not have any of the shortcomings that are enumerated above. They are biodegradable, nontoxic, and do not form xenobiotics. The use of fats and oils as base stocks or components of fuels and lubricants may well facilitate and accelerate the solution of certain ecological problems. 26 refs., 1 fig., 3 tabs

  3. Invasive alien plants in South Africa: how well do we understand the ecological impacts?

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Richardson, DM

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available challenge for South African ecologists is to address the twin issues of skills development and social transformation, to ensure that adequate and relevant ecological expertise is maintained to meet future research and management needs. Formal collaboration...

  4. Ecologic assessment of closure options for Savannah River Plant waste sites: Task 38, AX-681812

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-01-01

    Ecologic assessment of closure options is one of several analyses being documented in the EIDs (along with analysis of relative potential health risks, accident risks, and costs). This information will serve as a basis for choosing the best option for closing a particular waste facility. This report presents the methodology adopted for SRP waste site ecological assessment, and the results of its application. The results of the ecologic assessment indicated that no impacts are expected for any of the closure options at eleven sites. Significant ecologic impacts are possible at the eight waste sites or groups of waste sites including the Radioactive Waste Burial Grounds, Old TNX Seepage Basin, CMP Pits, F-Area Seepage Basins, H-Area Seepage Basins, SRL Seepage Basins, R-Reactor Seepage Basins, and L-Area Oil and Chemical Basin. 104 refs., 22 figs., 241 tabs

  5. Application of ecological interface design in nuclear power plant (NPP operator support system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexey Anokhin

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Most publications confirm that an ecological interface is a very efficient tool to supporting operators in recognition of complex and unusual situations and in decision-making. The present article describes the experience of implementation of an ecological interface concept for visualization of material balance in a drum separator of RBMK-type NPPs. Functional analysis of the domain area was carried out and revealed main factors and contributors to the balance. The proposed ecological display was designed to facilitate execution of the most complicated cognitive operations, such as comparison, summarizing, prediction, etc. The experimental series carried out at NPPs demonstrated considerable reduction of operators' mental load, time of reaction, and error rate. Keywords: Ecological Interface Design, Experimental Evaluation, Model, Work Domain Analysis

  6. Possible ecological risk of two pharmaceuticals diclofenac andparacetamol demonstrated on a model plant Lemna minor

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kummerová, M.; Zezulka, Š.; Babula, P.; Tříska, Jan

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 302, jan (2016), s. 351-361 ISSN 0304-3894 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : Antioxidant mechanism * Diclofenac * Lemna minor * Oxidative stress * Paracetamol Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 6.065, year: 2016

  7. The Hidden World within Plants: Ecological and Evolutionary Considerations for Defining Functioning of Microbial Endophytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Overbeek, Leonard S.; Berg, Gabriele; Pirttilä, Anna Maria; Compant, Stéphane; Campisano, Andrea; Döring, Matthias; Sessitsch, Angela

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY All plants are inhabited internally by diverse microbial communities comprising bacterial, archaeal, fungal, and protistic taxa. These microorganisms showing endophytic lifestyles play crucial roles in plant development, growth, fitness, and diversification. The increasing awareness of and information on endophytes provide insight into the complexity of the plant microbiome. The nature of plant-endophyte interactions ranges from mutualism to pathogenicity. This depends on a set of abiotic and biotic factors, including the genotypes of plants and microbes, environmental conditions, and the dynamic network of interactions within the plant biome. In this review, we address the concept of endophytism, considering the latest insights into evolution, plant ecosystem functioning, and multipartite interactions. PMID:26136581

  8. Plant diversification promotes biocontrol services in peach orchards by shaping the ecological niches of insect herbivores and their natural enemies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wan, Nian Feng; Ji, Xiang Yun; Deng, Jian Yu

    2018-01-01

    Ecological niche indicators have been scarcely adopted to assess the biological control of insect herbivores by their natural enemies. We hypothesize that plant diversification promotes the biocontrol services by narrowing the niches of herbivores and broadening the niches of natural enemies....... Our study reveals that plant diversification promotes the biocontrol services by shaping the niche of herbivores and natural enemies, and provides a new assessment method to understand the biodiversity-niche-ecosystem management interactions........ In a large-scale experiment, we found that the abundance of natural enemies was increased by 38.1%, and the abundance of insect herbivores was decreased by 16.9% in peach orchards with plant diversification (treatment) compared to ones with monoculture (control). Stratified sampling indicated...

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

    OpenAIRE

    M?rsdorf, Martin A.; Ravolainen, Virve T.; St?vern, Leif Einar; Yoccoz, Nigel G.; J?nsd?ttir, Ingibj?rg Svala; Br?then, Kari Anne

    2015-01-01

    In ecology, expert knowledge on habitat characteristics is often used to define sampling units such as study sites. Ecologists are especially prone to such approaches when prior sampling frames are not accessible. Here we ask to what extent can different approaches to the definition of sampling units influence the conclusions that are drawn from an ecological study? We do this by comparing a formal versus a subjective definition of sampling units within a study design which is ...

  10. Interaction intimacy of pathogens and herbivores with their host plants influences the topological structure of ecological networks in different ways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benítez-Malvido, Julieta; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2015-04-01

    • Over the past two decades an interest in the role that plant-animal mutualistic networks play in the organization and dynamic of biodiversity has steadily risen. Despite the ecological, evolutionary, and economic importance of plant-herbivore and plant-pathogen antagonistic relationships, however, few studies have examined these interactions in an ecological network framework.• We describe for the first time the topological structure of multitrophic networks involving congeneric tropical plant species of the genus Heliconia (Heliconiaceae, Zingiberales) and their herbivores and pathogens in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil. We based our study on the available literature describing the organisms (e.g., insects, mites, fungi, and bacteria) that attack 24 different species, hybrids, and cultivated varieties of Heliconia.• In general, pathogen- and herbivore-Heliconia networks differed in their topological structure (more modular vs. more nested, respectively): pathogen-Heliconia networks were more specialized and compartmentalized than herbivore-Heliconia networks. High modularity was likely due to the high intimacy that pathogens have with their host plants as compared with the more generalized feeding modes and behavior of herbivores. Some clusters clearly reflected the clustering of closely related cultivated varieties of Heliconia sharing the same pathogens.• From a commercial standpoint, different varieties of the same Heliconia species may be more susceptible to being attacked by the same species of pathogens. In summary, our study highlights the importance of interaction intimacy in structuring trophic relationships between plants and pathogens in the tropics. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  11. Research Progress on the use of Plant Allelopathy in Agriculture and the Physiological and Ecological Mechanisms of Allelopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Fang; Cheng, Zhihui

    2015-01-01

    Allelopathy is a common biological phenomenon by which one organism produces biochemicals that influence the growth, survival, development, and reproduction of other organisms. These biochemicals are known as allelochemicals and have beneficial or detrimental effects on target organisms. Plant allelopathy is one of the modes of interaction between receptor and donor plants and may exert either positive effects (e.g., for agricultural management, such as weed control, crop protection, or crop re-establishment) or negative effects (e.g., autotoxicity, soil sickness, or biological invasion). To ensure sustainable agricultural development, it is important to exploit cultivation systems that take advantage of the stimulatory/inhibitory influence of allelopathic plants to regulate plant growth and development and to avoid allelopathic autotoxicity. Allelochemicals can potentially be used as growth regulators, herbicides, insecticides, and antimicrobial crop protection products. Here, we reviewed the plant allelopathy management practices applied in agriculture and the underlying allelopathic mechanisms described in the literature. The major points addressed are as follows: (1) Description of management practices related to allelopathy and allelochemicals in agriculture. (2) Discussion of the progress regarding the mode of action of allelochemicals and the physiological mechanisms of allelopathy, consisting of the influence on cell micro- and ultra-structure, cell division and elongation, membrane permeability, oxidative and antioxidant systems, growth regulation systems, respiration, enzyme synthesis and metabolism, photosynthesis, mineral ion uptake, protein and nucleic acid synthesis. (3) Evaluation of the effect of ecological mechanisms exerted by allelopathy on microorganisms and the ecological environment. (4) Discussion of existing problems and proposal for future research directions in this field to provide a useful reference for future studies on plant

  12. Research progress on the use of plant allelopathy in agriculture and the physiological and ecological mechanisms of allelopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fang eCheng

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Allelopathy is a common biological phenomenon by which one organism produces biochemicals that influence the growth, survival, development, and reproduction of other organisms. These biochemicals are known as allelochemicals and have beneficial or detrimental effects on target organisms. Plant allelopathy is one of the modes of interaction between receptor and donor plants and may exert either positive effects (e.g., for agricultural management, such as weed control, crop protection, or crop re-establishment or negative effects (e.g., autotoxicity, soil sickness, or biological invasion. To ensure sustainable agricultural development, it is important to exploit cultivation systems that take advantage of the stimulatory / inhibitory influence of allelopathic plants to regulate plant growth and development and to avoid allelopathic autotoxicity. Allelochemicals can potentially be used as growth regulators, herbicides, insecticides and antimicrobial crop protection products. Here, we reviewed the plant allelopathy management practices applied in agriculture and the underlying allelopathic mechanisms described in the literature. The major points addressed are as follows: (1 Description of management practices related to allelopathy and allelochemicals in agriculture. (2 Discussion of the progress regarding the mode of action of allelochemicals and the physiological mechanisms of allelopathy, consisting of the influence on cell micro- and ultra-structure, cell division and elongation, membrane permeability, oxidative and antioxidant systems, growth regulation systems, respiration, enzyme synthesis and metabolism, photosynthesis, mineral ion uptake, protein and nucleic acid synthesis. (3 Evaluation of the effect of ecological mechanisms exerted by allelopathy on microorganisms and the ecological environment. (4 Discussion of existing problems and proposal for future research directions in this field to provide a useful reference for future studies on

  13. Measuring nutrient spiralling in streams

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Newbold, J D; Elwood, J W; O' Neill, R V; Van Winkle, W

    1981-01-01

    Nutrient cycling in streams involves some downstream transport before the cycle is completed. Thus, the path traveled by a nutrient atom in passing through the cycle can be visualized as a spiral. As an index of the spiralling process, we introduce spiralling length, defined as the average distance associated with one complete cycle of a nutrient atom. This index provides a measure of the utilization of nutrients relative to the available supply from upstream. Using /sup 32/p as a tracer, we estimated a spiralling length of 193 m for phosphorus in a small woodland stream.

  14. Ecological state of the Rance marine basin after 30 years of functioning of the tidal power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Retiere, Ch.; Desroy, N.; Bonnot-Courtois, C.; Le Mao, P.

    1997-01-01

    The Rance basin on the Brittany coast (France) is the unique site in the world where the long term ecological impacts of the functioning of a tidal power plant can be evaluated. Two aspects are distinguished: the consequences due to the building the plant and those due to the functioning of the plant. During the building of the barrage which lasted 3 years, the estuary was isolated from the sea and led to an increase of sedimentation and organic matter and to important variations of the water salinity. Thus the whole marine flora and fauna disappeared. Today, the operation of the plant has changed the rhythm and amplitude of the tide inside the basin. Ten to fifteen years were necessary for the marine fauna and flora to recover a new equilibrium inside the basin after the plant was built. The functioning of the new ecosystem is governed by the relationship between species independently of the initial perturbation and its equilibrium is based on the regular functioning of the plant. (J.S.)

  15. Ecological implications of reduced pollen deposition in alpine plants: a case study using a dominant cushion plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reid, Anya; Hooper, Robyn; Molenda, Olivia; Lortie, Christopher J

    2014-01-01

    The reproductive assurance hypothesis states that self-incompatible female plants must produce twice the number of seeds relative to their self-compatible hermaphroditic counterparts to persist in gynodioecious populations. This is a viable life-history strategy, provided that pollination rates are sufficiently high. However, reduced pollination rates in alpine plants are likely due to climate induced plant-pollinator mismatches and general declines in pollinators. Using a gynodioecious population of the dominant plant Silene acaulis (Caryophyllaceae), we tested the reproductive assurance hypothesis and also the stress gradient hypothesis with a series of pollinator exclusion trials and extensive measurements of subsequent reproductive output (gender ratio, plant size, percent fruit-set, fruit weight, seeds per fruit, total seeds, seed weight, and seed germination). The reproductive assurance hypothesis was supported with female plants being more sensitive to and less likely to be viable under reductions in pollination rates. These findings are the first to show that the stress gradient hypothesis is also supported under a gradient of pollen supply instead of environmental limitations. Beneficiary abundance was negatively correlated to percent fruit-set under current pollen supply, but became positive under reduced pollen supply suggesting that there are important plant-plant-pollinator interactions related to reproduction in these alpine plant species.

  16. Special issue on Ecology, evolution, and conservation of plants in China: Introduction and some considerations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liu, J. Q.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available China has one of the world’s richest floras with around 33,000 vascular plants, of which up to 17,000 are endemic. Besides these astonishing figures, the Chinese flora is very interesting from the point of view of evolution, as it shows a strong relictual character with some truly “living fossils” such as Ginkgo biloba or Metasequoia glyptostroboides. At the same time, China probably harbours the most important ‘‘evolutionary front’’ of the world’s temperate flora, the Hengduan Mountains. Unfortunately, the flora of China also includes a high number of threatened species (with nearly 4000, mostly due to the destruction of natural habitats and the over-exploitation of natural resources. This special issue, which corresponds to volume 34 of Collectanea Botanica, is aimed to contribute to the knowledge of Chinese flora through a series of contributions (seven full-length articles and one short note spanning several topics such as biogeography, conservation, demography, ecology, evolution, and plant-animal interactions.China tiene una de las floras más ricas del mundo con alrededor 33.000 plantas vasculares, de las cuales hasta 17.000 son endémicas. Además de estas cifras asombrosas, la flora china es muy interesante desde el punto de vista de la evolución, ya que muestra un fuerte carácter relictual con algunos auténticos «fósiles vivientes» como Ginkgo biloba o Metasequoia glyptostroboides. Al mismo tiempo, China probablemente alberga el «frente evolutivo» más importante de las floras templadas del mundo, las montañas Hengduan. Por desgracia, la flora de China también destaca por el elevado número de especies amenazadas (casi 4000, sobre todo debido a la destrucción de los hábitats y la sobreexplotación de los recursos naturales. Este número especial, que corresponde al volumen 34 de Collectanea Botanica, tiene como objetivo contribuir al conocimiento de la flora de China a través de una serie de contribuciones

  17. Ancient ecology of 15-million-year-old browsing mammals within C3 plant communities from Panama.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacFadden, Bruce J; Higgins, Pennilyn

    2004-06-01

    Middle Miocene mammals are known from approximately 15 million-year-old sediments exposed along the Panama Canal of Central America, a region that otherwise has an exceedingly poor terrestrial fossil record. These land mammals, which represent a part of the ancient terrestrial herbivore community, include an oreodont Merycochoerus matthewi, small camel-like protoceratid artiodactyl Paratoceras wardi, two horses Anchitherium clarencei and Archaeohippus sp., and two rhinos Menoceras barbouri and Floridaceras whitei. Bulk and serial carbon and oxygen isotope analyses of the tooth enamel carbonate allow reconstruction of the ancient climate and ecology of these fossil mammals. Ancient Panama had an equable climate with seasonal temperature and rainfall fluctuations less than those seen today. The middle Miocene terrestrial community consisted predominantly, or exclusively, of C3 plants, i.e., there is no evidence for C4 grasses. Statistically different mean carbon isotope values for the mammalian herbivores indicate niche partitioning of the C3 plant food resources. The range of individual carbon isotope analyses, i.e., delta13C from -15.9 to -10.1 per thousand, indicates herbivores feeding on diverse plants from different habitats with extrapolated delta13C values of -29.9 to -24.2 per thousand, possibly ranging from dense forest to more open country woodland. The ecological niches of individual mammalian herbivore species were differentiated either by diet or body size.

  18. CMEIAS bioimage informatics that define the landscape ecology of immature microbial biofilms developed on plant rhizoplane surfaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank B Dazzo

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Colonization of the rhizoplane habitat is an important activity that enables certain microorganisms to promote plant growth. Here we describe various types of computer-assisted microscopy that reveal important ecological insights of early microbial colonization behavior within biofilms on plant root surfaces grown in soil. Examples of the primary data are obtained by analysis of processed images of rhizoplane biofilm landscapes analyzed at single-cell resolution using the emerging technology of CMEIAS bioimage informatics software. Included are various quantitative analyses of the in situ biofilm landscape ecology of microbes during their pioneer colonization of white clover roots, and of a rhizobial biofertilizer strain colonized on rice roots where it significantly enhances the productivity of this important crop plant. The results show that spatial patterns of immature biofilms developed on rhizoplanes that interface rhizosphere soil are highly structured (rather than distributed randomly when analyzed at the appropriate spatial scale, indicating that regionalized microbial cell-cell interactions and the local environment can significantly affect their cooperative and competitive colonization behaviors.

  19. Distribution, Fraction, and Ecological Assessment of Heavy Metals in Sediment-Plant System in Mangrove Forest, South China Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ruili; Chai, Minwei; Qiu, Guo Yu

    2016-01-01

    Overlying water, sediment, rhizosphere sediment and mangrove seedlings in the Futian mangrove forest were analyzed for heavy metals. The results showed that mangrove plant acidified sediment and increased organic matter contents. Except for chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni) and copper (Cu) in Aegiceras corniculatum sediment, heavy metals in all sediments were higher than in overlying water, rhizosphere sediment and mangrove root. Heavy metals in Avicennia marina sediments were higher than other sediments. The lower heavy metal biological concentration factors (BCFs) and translocation factors (TFs) indicated that mangrove plant adopted exclusion strategy. The geo-accumulation index, potential ecological risk index and risk assessment code (RAC) demonstrated that heavy metals have posed a considerable ecological risk, especially for cadmium (Cd). Heavy metals (Cr, Ni, Cu and Cd) mainly existed in the reducible fractions. These findings provide actual heavy metal accumulations in sediment-plant ecosystems in mangrove forest, being important in designing the long-term management and conservation policies for managers of mangrove forest. PMID:26800267

  20. [Characteristics of soil phosphorous loss under different ecological planting patterns in hilly red soil regions of southern Hunan Province, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Min; Wen, Shi-Lin; Xu, Ming-Gang; Dong, Chun-Hua; Qin, Lin; Zhang, Lu

    2013-11-01

    Taking a large standard runoff plot on a red soil slope in Qiyang County, southern Hunan Province as a case, this paper studied the surface soil phosphorus loss characteristics in the hilly red soil regions of southern Hunan under eight ecological planting patterns. The phosphorus loss from wasteland (T1) was most serious, followed by that from natural sloped cropping patterns (T2 and T3), while the phosphorus loss amount from terrace cropping patterns (T4-T8) was the least, only occupying 9.9%, 37%, 0.7%, 2.3%, and 1.9% of T1, respectively. The ecological planting patterns directly affected the forms of surface-lost soil phosphorus, with the particulate phosphorus (PP) as the main lost form. Under the condition of rainstorm (daily rainfall > 50 mm), rainfall had lesser effects on the phosphorus loss among different planting patterns. However, the phosphorus loss increased with increasing rain intensity. The surface soil phosphorus loss mainly occurred from June to September. Both the rainfall and the rain intensity were the factors directly affected the time distribution of surface soil phosphorus loss in hilly red soil regions of southern Hunan.

  1. Eco-hydrology: Groundwater flow and site factors in plant ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klijn, Frans; Witte, Jan-Philip M.

    Résumé En écologie végétale, le site est un concept central. Un site, c'est l'endroit où une espèce végétale ou une communauté de plantes se développe le site assure un ensemble de conditions dans lesquelles elles vivent. Dans un matériau homogène à l'origine, l'écoulement gravitaire d'une nappe influence les conditions du site par l'intermédiaire de la distribution spatiale des nutriments et d'autres composés chimiques associés. Les remontées d'eau peuvent tout spécialement produire et maintenir les conditions du site essentielles pour différentes espèces et communautés de plantes relativement rares. Les écologues ont porté une attention accrue à ces remontées d'eau, en sorte qu'une coopération avec les hydrologues en a résulté, avec l'émergence d'une discipline propre, l'éco-hydrologie, à la limite des deux domaines scientifiques et liée au concept de site. Aux Pays-Bas, une classification des types d'eau, basée sur l'histoire de l'eau souterraine à proximité de la surface, a été mise en oeuvre pour constituer une base nationale de données géographiques sur les remontées d'eau d'intérêt écologique. Des analyses des correspondances des données de cette base, portant sur l'existence de certaines espèces de plantes, montrent que dans les sols sableux pauvres du Pléistocène la remontée d'eau explique très bien la présence de certaines espèces et communautés, alors que, dans les plaines fluviales et les régions de polders à sols argileux riches, l'influence de la remontée d'eau est masquée par l'importance des caractéristiques des sols. En conclusion donc, certaines espèces de plantes peuvent être utilisées comme des indicateurs de la remontée d'eau dans des diagnostiques et des levés de terrain rapides, mais à condition de prendre en permanence des précautions sur les limites de l'approche. Resumen En ecología botánica un concepto de gran importancia es el de emplazamiento, definido como el lugar que

  2. Nitrogen saturation in stream ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Earl, Stevan R; Valett, H Maurice; Webster, Jackson R

    2006-12-01

    The concept of nitrogen (N) saturation has organized the assessment of N loading in terrestrial ecosystems. Here we extend the concept to lotic ecosystems by coupling Michaelis-Menten kinetics and nutrient spiraling. We propose a series of saturation response types, which may be used to characterize the proximity of streams to N saturation. We conducted a series of short-term N releases using a tracer (15NO3-N) to measure uptake. Experiments were conducted in streams spanning a gradient of background N concentration. Uptake increased in four of six streams as NO3-N was incrementally elevated, indicating that these streams were not saturated. Uptake generally corresponded to Michaelis-Menten kinetics but deviated from the model in two streams where some other growth-critical factor may have been limiting. Proximity to saturation was correlated to background N concentration but was better predicted by the ratio of dissolved inorganic N (DIN) to soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), suggesting phosphorus limitation in several high-N streams. Uptake velocity, a reflection of uptake efficiency, declined nonlinearly with increasing N amendment in all streams. At the same time, uptake velocity was highest in the low-N streams. Our conceptual model of N transport, uptake, and uptake efficiency suggests that, while streams may be active sites of N uptake on the landscape, N saturation contributes to nonlinear changes in stream N dynamics that correspond to decreased uptake efficiency.

  3. Parasitic plants in agriculture: Chemical ecology of germination and host-plant location as targets for sustainable control: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justin B. Runyon; John F. Tooker; Mark C. Mescher; Consuelo M. De Moraes

    2009-01-01

    Parasitic plants are among the most problematic pests of agricultural crops worldwide. Effective means of control are generally lacking, in part because of the close physiological connection between the established parasite and host plant hindering efficient control using traditional methods. Seed germination and host location are critical early-growth stages that...

  4. Getting the ecology into the interactions between plants and the plant-growth promoting bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hol, W.H.G.; Bezemer, T.M.; Biere, A.

    2013-01-01

    Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are increasingly appreciated for their contributions to primary productivity through promotion of growth and triggering of induced systemic resistance in plants. Here we focus on the beneficial effects of one particular species of PGPR (Pseudomonas

  5. Metagenomic analysis of an ecological wastewater treatment plant?s microbial communities and their potential to metabolize pharmaceuticals

    OpenAIRE

    Balcom, Ian N.; Driscoll, Heather; Vincent, James; Leduc, Meagan

    2016-01-01

    Pharmaceuticals and other micropollutants have been detected in drinking water, groundwater, surface water, and soil around the world. Even in locations where wastewater treatment is required, they can be found in drinking water wells, municipal water supplies, and agricultural soils. It is clear conventional wastewater treatment technologies are not meeting the challenge of the mounting pressures on global freshwater supplies. Cost-effective ecological wastewater treatment technologies have ...

  6. Ecological and Evolutionary Consequences of Plant Mediation of Multi-Trophic Interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Abdala, Luis Alejandro

    2014-01-01

    Consumers are strongly influenced by plant phenotypic variation. Such variation may have a genetic or environmental basis, and occurs when plant genotypes or species vary in traits or when patches of co-occurring plants vary in the number of genotypes or species. However, these sources of plant variation have usually been studied separately, their underlying mechanisms are poorly understood, and the evolutionary consequences are largely unknown. This dissertation aims to fill these gaps in re...

  7. Investigation of ecological constraints influence on competitiveness of nuclear power plants

    OpenAIRE

    Marchenko, O.V.; Solomin, S.V.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of the present study is to compare economic efficiency of nuclear power plants and plants on fossil fuel for short-term and long-term (until 2050) perspective and further forecasts specification of nuclear power generation development in Russia and in the world on the background of world energy as a whole. Technical and economic indicators of power plants of different types are systematized taking into account their uncertainty margins. Competitiveness of power plants of differ...

  8. Plant interactions with microbes and insects: from molecular mechanisms to ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pieterse, C.M.J.; Dicke, M.

    2007-01-01

    Plants are members of complex communities and interact both with antagonists and beneficial organisms. An important question in plant defense-signaling research is how plants integrate signals induced by pathogens, beneficial microbes and insects into the most appropriate adaptive response.

  9. Linking plant ecology and long-term hydrology to improve wetland restoration success

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.V. Caldwell; M.J. Vepraskas; J.D. Gregory; R.W. Skaggs; R.L. Huffman

    2011-01-01

    Although millions of dollars are spent restoring wetlands, failures are common, in part because the planted vegetation cannot survive in the restored hydrology. Wetland restoration would be more successful if the hydrologic requirements of wetland plant communities were known so that the most appropriate plants could be selected for the range of projected hydrology at...

  10. Ecological improvements in conjunction with the new RADAG hydro power plant; Oekologische Aufwertungsmassnahmen beim Neubau des Wehrkraftwerks der RADAG

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ruess, Beatrice [RUS AG, Baden (Switzerland)

    2010-07-01

    Together the weir power plant and the upgrading measures will create salient ecological improvements of the actual conditions of the residual water route. Of special importance are the increased runoff into the Old Rhine and the additional structuring measures. The natural evasion waters combined with the Collection Gallery and the Vertical Slot fish ladder together with the new fish ladder at the Main Power Station will on one hand greatly improve the longitudinal continuum and on the other hand create habitats for species relying on strong-flowing waters. (orig.)

  11. Do induced responses mediate the ecological interactions between the specialist herbivores and phytopathogens of an alpine plant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röder, Gregory; Rahier, Martine; Naisbit, Russell E

    2011-05-04

    Plants are not passive victims of the myriad attackers that rely on them for nutrition. They have a suite of physical and chemical defences, and are even able to take advantage of the enemies of their enemies. These strategies are often only deployed upon attack, so may lead to indirect interactions between herbivores and phytopathogens. In this study we test for induced responses in wild populations of an alpine plant (Adenostyles alliariae) that possesses constitutive chemical defence (pyrrolizidine alkaloids) and specialist natural enemies (two species of leaf beetle, Oreina elongata and Oreina cacaliae, and the phytopathogenic rust Uromyces cacaliae). Plants were induced in the field using chemical elicitors of the jasmonic acid (JA) and salicylic acid (SA) pathways and monitored for one month under natural conditions. There was evidence for induced resistance, with lower probability and later incidence of attack by beetles in JA-induced plants and of rust infection in SA-induced plants. We also demonstrate ecological cross-effects, with reduced fungal attack following JA-induction, and a cost of SA-induction arising from increased beetle attack. As a result, there is the potential for negative indirect effects of the beetles on the rust, while in the field the positive indirect effect of the rust on the beetles appears to be over-ridden by direct effects on plant nutritional quality. Such interactions resulting from induced susceptibility and resistance must be considered if we are to exploit plant defences for crop protection using hormone elicitors or constitutive expression. More generally, the fact that induced defences are even found in species that possess constitutively-expressed chemical defence suggests that they may be ubiquitous in higher plants.

  12. Do induced responses mediate the ecological interactions between the specialist herbivores and phytopathogens of an alpine plant?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory Röder

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Plants are not passive victims of the myriad attackers that rely on them for nutrition. They have a suite of physical and chemical defences, and are even able to take advantage of the enemies of their enemies. These strategies are often only deployed upon attack, so may lead to indirect interactions between herbivores and phytopathogens. In this study we test for induced responses in wild populations of an alpine plant (Adenostyles alliariae that possesses constitutive chemical defence (pyrrolizidine alkaloids and specialist natural enemies (two species of leaf beetle, Oreina elongata and Oreina cacaliae, and the phytopathogenic rust Uromyces cacaliae. Plants were induced in the field using chemical elicitors of the jasmonic acid (JA and salicylic acid (SA pathways and monitored for one month under natural conditions. There was evidence for induced resistance, with lower probability and later incidence of attack by beetles in JA-induced plants and of rust infection in SA-induced plants. We also demonstrate ecological cross-effects, with reduced fungal attack following JA-induction, and a cost of SA-induction arising from increased beetle attack. As a result, there is the potential for negative indirect effects of the beetles on the rust, while in the field the positive indirect effect of the rust on the beetles appears to be over-ridden by direct effects on plant nutritional quality. Such interactions resulting from induced susceptibility and resistance must be considered if we are to exploit plant defences for crop protection using hormone elicitors or constitutive expression. More generally, the fact that induced defences are even found in species that possess constitutively-expressed chemical defence suggests that they may be ubiquitous in higher plants.

  13. The Hidden World within Plants: Ecological and Evolutionary Considerations for Defining Functioning of Microbial Endophytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardoim, Pablo R; van Overbeek, Leonard S; Berg, Gabriele; Pirttilä, Anna Maria; Compant, Stéphane; Campisano, Andrea; Döring, Matthias; Sessitsch, Angela

    2015-09-01

    All plants are inhabited internally by diverse microbial communities comprising bacterial, archaeal, fungal, and protistic taxa. These microorganisms showing endophytic lifestyles play crucial roles in plant development, growth, fitness, and diversification. The increasing awareness of and information on endophytes provide insight into the complexity of the plant microbiome. The nature of plant-endophyte interactions ranges from mutualism to pathogenicity. This depends on a set of abiotic and biotic factors, including the genotypes of plants and microbes, environmental conditions, and the dynamic network of interactions within the plant biome. In this review, we address the concept of endophytism, considering the latest insights into evolution, plant ecosystem functioning, and multipartite interactions. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  14. Ecology and conservation of threatened plants in Tapkeshwari Hill ranges in the Kachchh Island, Gujarat, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.N. Joshi

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The survey was conducted in Tapkeshwari Hill Range (THR areas, wherever threatened plant species were said to exist, based on secondary information in literature. Thirteen plant species categorized as ‘Threatened’ by the World Conservation Monitoring centre (WCMC 1994 and also listed under various threat categories in the Red Data Book of Indian Plants (Nayar & Sastry 1988 were surveyed in the THR. All the RET plants reported from the study area occupied eight major habitat types. Thorn mixed forests harbored the highest number of individuals (560 of all RET plants, followed by open scrubs (345 individuals, Acacia senegal forests (328 and thorn mixed scrubs (293. Field observations showed that except Helichrysum cutchicum, all the other RET plant species were reported with very low seedlings and regeneration ratio. This paper discusses the status, distribution and threats faced and the conservation implications at border regions of some of the threatened plants of the arid Kachchh district.

  15. The ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in the Kuihe River basin (Xuzhou section) and the characteristics of plant enrichment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Ling; Zheng, Lei

    2018-01-01

    In order to investigate Kuihe River basin of heavy metals (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) pollution, the determination of the Kuihe River water body, the bottom of the river silt, riparian soil plants and heavy metal content of 9 kinds of riparian plants, investigate the pollution situation, so as to screen out the plants that has potential of enrichment and rehabilitation of heavy metal pollution. The results showed that Cd and Mn in the water body exceed bid; The pollution of Zn and Cu in the bottom mud is serious, potential ecological risk of heavy metals is Zn>Cu>Pb>Ni>Cd>As>Cr>Mn Riparian soil affected by sewage and overflow of sediment has significant positive correlation with soil heavy metals, among them, the Zn and Cu are heavy pollution; The selective absorption of heavy metals by 9 kinds of dominant plant leads to its bio concentration factor (BCF) of Cr and Pb on the low side, are all less than 1, from the translocation factor (TF), Setcreasea purpurea and Poa annua showed obvious roots type hoarding. Poa annua and Lycium chinense have a resistance on the absorption of heavy metals, Lythrum salicaria, Photinia serrulata and Broussonetia papyrifera have a unique advantage on enrichment of heavy metals, Broussonetia papyri era on a variety of strong ability of enrichment and transfer of heavy metals suggests that the woody plants in the vast application prospect in the field of rehabilitation technology of heavy metals.

  16. Plant-ants use symbiotic fungi as a food source: new insight into the nutritional ecology of ant-plant interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blatrix, Rumsaïs; Djiéto-Lordon, Champlain; Mondolot, Laurence; La Fisca, Philippe; Voglmayr, Hermann; McKey, Doyle

    2012-10-07

    Usually studied as pairwise interactions, mutualisms often involve networks of interacting species. Numerous tropical arboreal ants are specialist inhabitants of myrmecophytes (plants bearing domatia, i.e. hollow structures specialized to host ants) and are thought to rely almost exclusively on resources derived from the host plant. Recent studies, following up on century-old reports, have shown that fungi of the ascomycete order Chaetothyriales live in symbiosis with plant-ants within domatia. We tested the hypothesis that ants use domatia-inhabiting fungi as food in three ant-plant symbioses: Petalomyrmex phylax/Leonardoxa africana, Tetraponera aethiops/Barteria fistulosa and Pseudomyrmex penetrator/Tachigali sp. Labelling domatia fungal patches in the field with either a fluorescent dye or (15)N showed that larvae ingested domatia fungi. Furthermore, when the natural fungal patch was replaced with a piece of a (15)N-labelled pure culture of either of two Chaetothyriales strains isolated from T. aethiops colonies, these fungi were also consumed. These two fungi often co-occur in the same ant colony. Interestingly, T. aethiops workers and larvae ingested preferentially one of the two strains. Our results add a new piece in the puzzle of the nutritional ecology of plant-ants.

  17. Plant-ants use symbiotic fungi as a food source: new insight into the nutritional ecology of ant–plant interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blatrix, Rumsaïs; Djiéto-Lordon, Champlain; Mondolot, Laurence; La Fisca, Philippe; Voglmayr, Hermann; McKey, Doyle

    2012-01-01

    Usually studied as pairwise interactions, mutualisms often involve networks of interacting species. Numerous tropical arboreal ants are specialist inhabitants of myrmecophytes (plants bearing domatia, i.e. hollow structures specialized to host ants) and are thought to rely almost exclusively on resources derived from the host plant. Recent studies, following up on century-old reports, have shown that fungi of the ascomycete order Chaetothyriales live in symbiosis with plant-ants within domatia. We tested the hypothesis that ants use domatia-inhabiting fungi as food in three ant–plant symbioses: Petalomyrmex phylax/Leonardoxa africana, Tetraponera aethiops/Barteria fistulosa and Pseudomyrmex penetrator/Tachigali sp. Labelling domatia fungal patches in the field with either a fluorescent dye or 15N showed that larvae ingested domatia fungi. Furthermore, when the natural fungal patch was replaced with a piece of a 15N-labelled pure culture of either of two Chaetothyriales strains isolated from T. aethiops colonies, these fungi were also consumed. These two fungi often co-occur in the same ant colony. Interestingly, T. aethiops workers and larvae ingested preferentially one of the two strains. Our results add a new piece in the puzzle of the nutritional ecology of plant-ants. PMID:22859596

  18. Selecting native perennial plants for ecological intensification in Mediterranean greenhouse horticulture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, E; González, M; Paredes, D; Campos, M; Benítez, E

    2017-12-04

    Natural control by predators and parasitoids provides an important and often unnoticed ecosystem service to agricultural landscapes by reducing pest populations in crops. The current model of horticultural intensification in south-eastern Spain produces high yields but has also resulted in a landscape almost completely covered by plastic. Promoting natural areas among greenhouses could enhance biodiversity, by being beneficial insects, and reduce pest pressure outdoors. The first step is to ascertain how pests and their natural enemies (NEs) use Mediterranean vegetation for selecting the best plants for pest suppression outdoors. The abundance of the two major horticultural pests, the tobacco whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, and the western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis, together with their NEs, were assayed in 22 flowering perennial plants, which were newly planted in an experimental field surrounded by greenhouses. Eight plant species were identified as the most critical species for sustaining pest populations outdoors. A set of five plant species supported a medium level of pests, and another set of ten plant species supported the lowest level of both pests. Tobacco whitefly occurred in a few plants species, whereas western flower thrips occurred on almost all the plant species studied, and was favoured by the presence of flowers in perennial plants. The results suggest that plant diversity may provide relatively few acceptable host plants for tobacco whitefly than for western flower thrips. NEs were generally collected in plants that also supported abundance of pests, indicating that host/prey availability, more than food resources from flowers, was a stronger predictor of NE abundance in perennial plants. Field trials using the plants with the lowest host acceptance by pests are needed in order to ascertain whether pest abundance outdoors is reduced.

  19. Sapfluxnet: a global database of sap flow measurements to unravel the ecological factors of transpiration regulation in woody plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poyatos, Rafael; Martínez-Vilalta, Jordi; Molowny-Horas, Roberto; Steppe, Kathy; Oren, Ram; Katul, Gabriel; Mahecha, Miguel

    2016-04-01

    regulation and hydraulic status. SAPFLUXNET will lead to the first comprehensive study of the ecological drivers of tree-level transpiration across the globe and will aid to constrain the empirical upscaling between plant traits and ecosystem function. Finally, we anticipate that, once SAPFLUXNET is populated with sufficient observations, it will complement existing ecological networks like FLUXNET and it will also contribute to the evaluation of Earth-system models.

  20. Biological/ecological investigations parallel to wind power plant construction and operation. Final report. Biologisch-oekologische Begleituntersuchungen zum Bau und Betrieb von Windkraftanlagen. Endbericht

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boettger, M; Clemens, T; Grote, G; Hartmann, G; Hartwig, E; Lammen, C; Vauk-Hentzelt, E

    1990-01-01

    In view of the fact that there is no validated knowledge in Germany on the environmental effects of wind power plant construction and operation, the Norddeutsche Naturschutzakademie was asked by the BMFT to carry out a study in this field. The following problems were investigated: General ecological assessment and ornithological assessment of sites; investigations parallel to plant construction and operation, ecological effects; long-term effects; proposal of landscape conservation measures in regions with wind power plants. The report presents the results of the investigation. (BWI).

  1. About possibility of creation of ecologically pure, safe nuclear power plants on the basis of high-effective resonant neutron interaction with splitting substances

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Irdyncheyev, L.A.; Malofeyev, A.M.; Frid, E.S.; Abramov, E.P.

    1993-01-01

    Currently the most important problem in nuclear engineering is creation of ecologically pure, safe nuclear power plants in the context of real danger of global ecological pollution of the environment with long-lived fission products and the resultant transuranium nuclides. The problem can be solved by creating nuclear power plants on the basis of high-effective resonant interaction (HERI). Such power plants would provide the total cycle, including nuclear fuel production (Plutonium-239 from Uranium-238), combustion and waste products salvaging by way of transformation of radioactive nuclides into stable isotopes

  2. Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning: Exploring Principles of Ecology with Agricultural Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruesink, Jennifer; O'Connor, Eileen; Sparks, Grace

    2006-01-01

    To date, little of the ecological research on biological diversity and ecosystem functioning has been carried out in agricultural systems, despite the fact that agriculture is a major contributor to loss of native habitats and species. However, agricultural research has demonstrated that polycultures of multiple crop species can have higher total…

  3. Ecological scale and forest development: squirrels, dietary fungi, and vascular plants in managed and unmanaged forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    A.B. Carey; J. Kershner; B. Biswell; L.S. Dominguez de Toledo

    1999-01-01

    Understanding ecological processes and their spatial scales is key to managing ecosystems for biodiversity, especially for species associated with late-seral forest. We focused on 2 species of squirrel (Sciuridae: northern flying squirrel, Glaucomys sabrinus, and Townsend's chipmunk, Tamias townsendii) in a crosssectional survey of managed and natural stands in...

  4. Nutritional ecology of insect-plant interactions: persistent handicaps and the need for innovative approaches

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Loon, van J.J.A.; Casas, J.; Pincebourde, S.

    2005-01-01

    Quantifying the flow of matter and energy in food webs is indispensable when assessing the effects of increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide, ozone level and temperature as a result of global climate change. In insect nutritional ecology, quantification of digestive and metabolic efficiency is

  5. The potential for host switching via ecological fitting in the emerald ash borer-host plant system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cipollini, Don; Peterson, Donnie L

    2018-02-27

    The traits used by phytophagous insects to find and utilize their ancestral hosts can lead to host range expansions, generally to closely related hosts that share visual and chemical features with ancestral hosts. Host range expansions often result from ecological fitting, which is the process whereby organisms colonize and persist in novel environments, use novel resources, or form novel associations with other species because of the suites of traits that they carry at the time they encounter the novel environment. Our objective in this review is to discuss the potential and constraints on host switching via ecological fitting in emerald ash borer, Agrilus planipennis, an ecologically and economically important invasive wood boring beetle. Once thought of as an ash (Fraxinus spp.) tree specialist, recent studies have revealed a broader potential host range than was expected for this insect. We discuss the demonstrated host-use capabilities of this beetle, as well as the potential for and barriers to the adoption of additional hosts by this beetle. We place our observations in the context of biochemical mechanisms that mediate the interaction of these beetles with their host plants and discuss whether evolutionary host shifts are a possible outcome of the interaction of this insect with novel hosts.

  6. Applying an overall criterion according to the European norms, for ecological assessment of the thermal electrical power plant operation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cardu, Mircea; Petrescu, Camelia

    2006-01-01

    This work consists of assessing the thermal power plants impact on the environment by the global considering of the pollutant SO 2 and NO x emissions. This assessment takes into account the emission comparisons with the admissible values provided by the European norms. The conclusion we might draw is that the SN proposed global criterion application, (S from sulfur, namely the sulfur dioxide and N from nitrogen, namely the nitrogen oxides), the investment expenses for installing the necessary SDN and SDS systems (were SDN stands for denox plant and SDS for desulfurization systems), and the operation expenses are smaller (in case of pit coal they are even smaller) if we apply such criterion. The ecologic analysis model we applied as an estimation for large solid fuels categories (lignite, pit coal) and for the 330 MW existing power units, can also be applied to the actual cases for different fuel qualities or unit unitary power levels

  7. Plant for producing an oxygen-containing additive as an ecologically beneficial component for liquid motor fuels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siryk, Yury Paul; Balytski, Ivan Peter; Korolyov, Volodymyr George; Klishyn, Olexiy Nick; Lnianiy, Vitaly Nick; Lyakh, Yury Alex; Rogulin, Victor Valery

    2013-04-30

    A plant for producing an oxygen-containing additive for liquid motor fuels comprises an anaerobic fermentation vessel, a gasholder, a system for removal of sulphuretted hydrogen, and a hotwell. The plant further comprises an aerobic fermentation vessel, a device for liquid substance pumping, a device for liquid aeration with an oxygen-containing gas, a removal system of solid mass residue after fermentation, a gas distribution device; a device for heavy gases utilization; a device for ammonia adsorption by water; a liquid-gas mixer; a cavity mixer, a system that serves superficial active and dispersant matters and a cooler; all of these being connected to each other by pipelines. The technical result being the implementation of a process for producing an oxygen containing additive, which after being added to liquid motor fuels, provides an ecologically beneficial component for motor fuels by ensuring the stability of composition fuel properties during long-term storage.

  8. Plant-associated microbiomes in arid lands: diversity, ecology and biotechnological potential

    KAUST Repository

    Soussi, Asma; Ferjani, Raoudha; Marasco, Ramona; Guesmi, Amel; Cherif, Hanene; Rolli, Eleonora; Mapelli, Francesca; Ouzari, Hadda Imene; Daffonchio, Daniele; Cherif, Ameur

    2015-01-01

    Selection and recruitment of the plant associated bacterial assemblages is mediated by the combination of the bio-pedo-agroclimatic conditions and the plant species or varieties. Diversity and functional redundancy of these associated PGPR makes them very active in supporting plant improvement, health and resistance to drought, salt and related stresses. Implementing proper biotechnological applications of the arid and desert-adapted PGPR constitute the challenge to be raised.

  9. Influence of cooling water discharges from Kaiga Nuclear Power Plant on aquatic ecology of the Kadra reservoir

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghosh, T.K.; Zargar, S.; Kulkarni, A.V.

    2007-01-01

    The alterations induced in the ambient temperature can lead to wide manifestations in species distribution and community structure. In general, elevated water temperature causes changes in species composition, species dominance, standing crop and productivity of biota including phytoplankton communities in any aquatic ecosystem. Thus warm water discharges from power plants into the receiving water bodies may adversely affect aquatic ecology. In the absence of exhaustive data on the response of aquatic organisms and ecosystems in the tropics to elevated temperatures, the only option is to draw inferences, from the experiences in the subtropical and temperature areas. Since, sufficient data on similar line are not available in tropical environment, present paper delineates certain aspects of aquatic ecology of the Kadra reservoir where cooling water is discharged. The study suggests the heated effluents from Kaiga Nuclear Power plant caused changes in dissolved oxygen and pH of water, heterotrophic bacterial population, sediment biogeochemical cycles related biochemical processes, species composition, species dominance, standing crop and productivity of biota including phytoplankton communities within 500 m from End of Discharge Canal point of Kadra reservoir when two units are running in full capacity. (author)

  10. Improving ecological risk assessment by including bioavailability into species sensitivity distributions: An example for plants exposed to nickel in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Semenzin, Elena; Temminghoff, Erwin J.M.; Marcomini, Antonio

    2007-01-01

    The variability of species sensitivity distribution (SSD) due to contaminant bioavailability in soil was explored by using nickel as metal of concern. SSDs of toxicity test results of Avena sativa L. originating from different soils and expressed as total content and available (0.01 M CaCl 2 ) extractable concentration were compared to SSDs for terrestrial plants derived from literature toxicity data. Also the 'free' nickel (Ni 2+ ) concentration was calculated and compared. The results demonstrated that SSDs based on total nickel content highly depend on the experimental conditions set up for toxicity testing (i.e. selected soil and pH value) and thus on metal bioavailability in soil, resulting in an unacceptable uncertainty for ecological risk estimation. The use in SSDs of plant toxicity data expressed as 0.01 M CaCl 2 extractable metal strongly reduced the uncertainty in the SSD curve and thus can improve the ERA procedure remarkably by taking bioavailability into account. - The use of bioavailability toxicity data can improve species sensitivity distribution (SSD) curves and thus ecological risk assessment (ERA)

  11. Are trade-offs among species' ecological interactions scale dependent? A test using pitcher-plant inquiline species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneitel, Jamie M

    2012-01-01

    Trade-offs among species' ecological interactions is a pervasive explanation for species coexistence. The traits associated with trade-offs are typically measured to mechanistically explain species coexistence at a single spatial scale. However, species potentially interact at multiple scales and this may be reflected in the traits among coexisting species. I quantified species' ecological traits associated with the trade-offs expected at both local (competitive ability and predator tolerance) and regional (competitive ability and colonization rate) community scales. The most common species (four protozoa and a rotifer) from the middle trophic level of a pitcher plant (Sarracenia purpurea) inquiline community were used to link species traits to previously observed patterns of species diversity and abundance. Traits associated with trade-offs (competitive ability, predator tolerance, and colonization rate) and other ecological traits (size, growth rate, and carrying capacity) were measured for each of the focal species. Traits were correlated with one another with a negative relationship indicative of a trade-off. Protozoan and rotifer species exhibited a negative relationship between competitive ability and predator tolerance, indicative of coexistence at the local community scale. There was no relationship between competitive ability and colonization rate. Size, growth rate, and carrying capacity were correlated with each other and the trade-off traits: Size was related to both competitive ability and predator tolerance, but growth rate and carrying capacity were correlated with predator tolerance. When partial correlations were conducted controlling for size, growth rate and carrying capacity, the trade-offs largely disappeared. These results imply that body size is the trait that provides the basis for ecological interactions and trade-offs. Altogether, this study showed that the examination of species' traits in the context of coexistence at different scales

  12. Eavesdropping on plant-insect-microbe chemical communications in agricultural ecology: a virtual issue on semiochemicals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studies of plant-insect interactions, and more recently the interactions among plants, insects, and microbes, have revealed that volatiles often facilitate insect movement, aggregation, and host location by herbivores, predators and parasitoids, all of which could be used to help protect agriculture...

  13. Plant protection in post-Soviet Kazakhstan: the loss of an ecological perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Toleubayev, K.

    2009-01-01

    This thesis examines why and how plant protection issues are embedded in political, economic and social contexts. It analyses the domain of plant protection in Kazakhstan under two different socio-economic and political formations, namely the Soviet period before 1991 and the post-Soviet period

  14. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kant, M.R.; Jonckheere, W.; Knegt, B.; Lemos, F.; Liu, J.; Schimmel, B.C.J.; Villarroel, C.A.; Ataide, L.M.S.; Dermauw, W.; Glas, J.J.; Egas, M.; Janssen, A.; Van Leeuwen, T.; Schuurink, R.C.; Sabelis, M.W.; Alba, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Plants are hotbeds for parasites such as arthropod herbivores, which acquire nutrients and energy from their hosts in order to grow and reproduce. Hence plants are selected to evolve resistance, which in turn selects for herbivores that can cope with this resistance. To preserve their

  15. Ecological Survey of Valuable Non-Timber Plant Resources in Two ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The density and diversity of plant species producing valued non-timber products in two moist rainforests in Southeastern Nigeria were studied. The two forests are Cross-River North Forest Reserve, Cross River State and Stubbs Creek Forest Reserve, Akwa Ibom State. Twenty- three plant species with the distribution as ...

  16. Plant-mediated Interactions Among Insects within a Community Ecological Perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poelman, E.H.; Dicke, M.

    2014-01-01

    Plants may be visited by many species of insects during their life-time. These insects include harmful herbivores above and belowground as well as beneficial natural enemies of herbivores and pollinators. Moreover, these interactions may take place sequentially or simultaneously. Responses of plants

  17. Traditional ecological knowledge among Sami reindeer herders in northern Sweden about vascular plants grazed by reindeer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berit Inga

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Traditional knowledge about how reindeer utilize forage resources was expected to be crucial to reindeer herders. Seventeen Sami reindeer herders in four reindeer herding communities in Sweden (“samebyar” in Swedish were interviewed about plants species considered to be important reindeer food plants in scientific literature. Among 40 plant species, which the informants were asked to identify and indicate whether and when they were grazed by reindeer, they identified a total of 21 plant taxa and five plant groups. They especially recognised species that were used as human food by the Sami themselves, but certain specific forage plants were also identified. Detailed knowledge of vascular plants at the species level was surprisingly general, which may indicate that knowledge of pasture resources in a detailed species level is not of vital importance. This fact is in sharp contradiction to the detailed knowledge that Sami people express for example about reindeer (as an animal or snow (as physical element. The plausible explanation is that observations of individual plant species are unnecessarily detailed information in large-scale reindeer pastoralism, because the animals graze freely under loose herding and border surveillance.

  18. Concepts in production ecology for analysis and design of animal and plant-animal production systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ven, van de G.W.J.; Ridder, de N.; Keulen, van H.; Ittersum, van M.K.

    2003-01-01

    The use of a hierarchy in growth factors (defining, limiting and reducing growth factors), as developed for plant production has shown its usefulness in the analysis and design of plant production systems. This hierarchy presents a theoretical framework for the analysis of biophysical conditions in

  19. Ecological assembly rules in plant communities-approaches, patterns and prospects

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Götzenberger, L.; de Bello, Francesco; Brathen, K. A.; Davison, J.; Dubuis, A.; Guisan, A.; Lepš, Jan; Lindborg, R.; Moora, M.; Partel, M.; Pellissier, L.; Pottier, J.; Vittoz, P.; Zobel, K.; Zobel, M.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 87, č. 1 (2012), s. 111-127 ISSN 1464-7931 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/1471 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516; CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 ; RVO:60077344 Keywords : community assembly * competition * meta - analysis Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 10.256, year: 2012

  20. Where Language Touches the Earth: Folklore and Ecology in Tohono O'odham Plant Emergence Narratives

    OpenAIRE

    Hughes, Jennifer L.

    1996-01-01

    The historical and ecological relationships between the Tohono O'odham and the Sonoran desert landscape are expressed in the stories they tell. The Tohono O'odham have lived in the deserts of southwestern Arizona and northern Mexico for centuries, interacting with their environment and gaining intimate knowledge of desert botanical communities. Many of these interactions are dramatized in their traditional oral narratives. I have characterized those traditional oral narratives that illustrate...

  1. Using ecological hydrograph for determination of flow remaining in sections of reduced flow of small hydropower plants; Uso do hidrograma ecologico para determinacao de vazoes remanescentes em trechos de vazao reduzida de pequenas centrais hidreletricas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliveira, Samuel Torres de; Dzedzej, Maira; Batista, Thiago Roberto; Silva, Benedito [IX Consultoria e Representacoes Ltda, Itajuba, MG (Brazil); Universidade Federal de Itajuba (UNIFEI), MG (Brazil); Santos, Afonso Henrique Moreira [MS Consultoria Ltda, Itajuba, MG (Brazil); Universidade Federal de Itajuba (UNIFEI), MG (Brazil)

    2010-07-01

    The rivers have been providing the basis for socio-economic development. Water is used for many different purposes, domestic, industrial, agricultural and power generation, in addition to providing navigation routes, and food resources for fisheries. The installation of hydroelectric centers which cause diversion of the river, leads to the creation of a reduced flow section. The residual flow proposed for this area should respect the characteristics of hydrological, morphological, chemical and ecological state of the river, ensuring their multiple uses. This work's purpose is the determination of a flow, or a set of adequate minimum flows for the reduced flow section of Small Hydropower Plants (SHP), to ensure the sustainability of the river and estuary ecosystems, communities and human welfare. The proposal of a holistic methodology for determining an environmental flow, using either hydrological, hydraulic and habitat methodologies, aims to innovate in the destination, not just of a fixed value of in stream flow, but of a complete system of adequate flows to the river under study. Finally, we present the case of PCH Rio Manso, of property Ecopart Investimentos S.A., located on rio Lourenco Velho, Itajuba city, MG; a project currently under review by the responsible environmental agency, aiming to acquire the Previous License. (author)

  2. Ecological Effects of Roads on the Plant Diversity of Coastal Wetland in the Yellow River Delta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunzhao Li

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The 26 sample sites in 7 study plots adjacent to asphalt road and earth road in coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta were selected to quantify plant diversity using quadrat sampling method in plant bloom phase of July and August 2012. The indice of βT and Jaccard’s coefficient were applied to evaluate the species diversity. The results showed that the plant diversities and alien plants were high in the range of 0–20 m to the road verge. There were more exotics and halophytes in plots of asphalt roadside than that of earth roadside. However, proportion of halophytes in habitats of asphalt roadsides was lower than that of earth roadside. By comparing β-diversity, there were more common species in the asphalt roadsides than that in the earth roadsides. The similarity of plant communities in studied plots of asphalt roadsides and earth roadsides increased with increasing the distance to road verge. The effect range of roads for plant diversity in study region was about 20 m to road verge. Our results indicate that the construction and maintenance of roads in wetland could increase the plant species diversities of communities and risk of alien species invasion.

  3. Ecological Effects of Roads on the Plant Diversity of Coastal Wetland in the Yellow River Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yunzhao; Du, Siyao; Han, Guangxuan; Qu, Fanzhu; Wang, Guangmei; Fu, Yuqin; Zhan, Chao

    2014-01-01

    The 26 sample sites in 7 study plots adjacent to asphalt road and earth road in coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta were selected to quantify plant diversity using quadrat sampling method in plant bloom phase of July and August 2012. The indice of β T and Jaccard's coefficient were applied to evaluate the species diversity. The results showed that the plant diversities and alien plants were high in the range of 0–20 m to the road verge. There were more exotics and halophytes in plots of asphalt roadside than that of earth roadside. However, proportion of halophytes in habitats of asphalt roadsides was lower than that of earth roadside. By comparing β-diversity, there were more common species in the asphalt roadsides than that in the earth roadsides. The similarity of plant communities in studied plots of asphalt roadsides and earth roadsides increased with increasing the distance to road verge. The effect range of roads for plant diversity in study region was about 20 m to road verge. Our results indicate that the construction and maintenance of roads in wetland could increase the plant species diversities of communities and risk of alien species invasion. PMID:25147872

  4. Ecological Survey of Valuable Non-Timber Plant Resources in Two ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Choice-Academy

    *Department of Forestry and Wildlife University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State. Nigeria ... State. Twenty- three plant species with the distribution as Trees (7), .... Tropical Dry Deciduous Forest of Eastern Ghats in ... Island Press, Washington D.C..

  5. Marine ecological habitat: A case study on projected thermal power plant around Dharamtar creek, India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Kulkarni, V.A.; Naidu, V.S.; Jagtap, T.G.

    Estuaries and tidal creeks, harboring mangroves particularly, face tremendous anthropogenic pressures. Expansion of mega cities and the thermal power plants are generally proposed in the vicinity of estuaries and creek, due to the feasibility...

  6. Microarrays in ecological research: A case study of a cDNA microarray for plant-herbivore interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gase Klaus

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microarray technology allows researchers to simultaneously monitor changes in the expression ratios (ERs of hundreds of genes and has thereby revolutionized most of biology. Although this technique has the potential of elucidating early stages in an organism's phenotypic response to complex ecological interactions, to date, it has not been fully incorporated into ecological research. This is partially due to a lack of simple procedures of handling and analyzing the expression ratio (ER data produced from microarrays. Results We describe an analysis of the sources of variation in ERs from 73 hybridized cDNA microarrays, each with 234 herbivory-elicited genes from the model ecological expression system, Nicotiana attenuata, using procedures that are commonly used in ecologic research. Each gene is represented by two independently labeled PCR products and each product was arrayed in quadruplicate. We present a robust method of normalizing and analyzing ERs based on arbitrary thresholds and statistical criteria, and characterize a "norm of reaction" of ERs for 6 genes (4 of known function, 2 of unknown with different ERs as determined across all analyzed arrays to provide a biologically-informed alternative to the use of arbitrary expression ratios in determining significance of expression. These gene-specific ERs and their variance (gene CV were used to calculate array-based variances (array CV, which, in turn, were used to study the effects of array age, probe cDNA quantity and quality, and quality of spotted PCR products as estimates of technical variation. Cluster analysis and a Principal Component Analysis (PCA were used to reveal associations among the transcriptional "imprints" of arrays hybridized with cDNA probes derived from mRNA from N. attenuata plants variously elicited and attacked by different herbivore species and from three congeners: N. quadrivalis, N. longiflora and N. clevelandii. Additionally, the PCA

  7. Ecological investigation of Hudson River macrozooplankton in the vicinity of a nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ginn, T.C.

    1977-01-01

    Studies were conducted on selected Hudson River macrozooplankton species to determine temporal and spatial distributions and responses to power plant operation. Distinguishing morphological and habitat characteristics were determined for the three gammarid amphipods (Gammarus daiberi, G. tigrinus, and G. fasciatus) occurring in the Hudson River. The oedicerotid amphipod Monoculodes edwardsi and the mysid Neomysis americana, in addition to the gammarid amphipods, displayed characteristic diel and seasonal abundances which affect their potential availability for power plant entrainment. The selected macrozooplankton species were utilized in temperature and chlorine bioassays in order to predict responses to cooling water entrainment. Although amphipods (Gammarus spp. and M. edwardsi) survived typical Indian Point cooling water temperatures, N. americana had high mortalities during a 30-minute, 8.3 0 C ΔT at 25 0 C ambient temperature. The bioassay results were substantiated by generally high survivals of entrained amphipods at the Indian Point plant. Neomysis americana were more heat sensitive, as indicated in bioassays, with average entrainment mortalities ranging from 30 to 60 percent during the summer. All species examined had higher immediate and latent mortalities during plant condenser chlorination. The ability of Gammarus to survive condenser passage and exposure to the Indian Point thermal discharge plume indicates that power plant operation on the lower Hudson River Estuary has no adverse impact on local gammarid amphipod populations. Entrained N. americana experience considerable mortalities; however, the impact on Atlantic Coast populations is minimized by the limited exposure of the population fringe to the Indian Point power plant

  8. Landscapes of facilitation: how self-organized patchiness of aquatic macrophytes promotes diversity in streams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornacchia, Loreta; van de Koppel, Johan; van der Wal, Daphne; Wharton, Geraldene; Puijalon, Sara; Bouma, Tjeerd J

    2018-04-01

    Spatial heterogeneity plays a crucial role in the coexistence of species. Despite recognition of the importance of self-organization in creating environmental heterogeneity in otherwise uniform landscapes, the effects of such self-organized pattern formation in promoting coexistence through facilitation are still unknown. In this study, we investigated the effects of pattern formation on species interactions and community spatial structure in ecosystems with limited underlying environmental heterogeneity, using self-organized patchiness of the aquatic macrophyte Callitriche platycarpa in streams as a model system. Our theoretical model predicted that pattern formation in aquatic vegetation - due to feedback interactions between plant growth, water flow and sedimentation processes - could promote species coexistence, by creating heterogeneous flow conditions inside and around the plant patches. The spatial plant patterns predicted by our model agreed with field observations at the reach scale in naturally vegetated rivers, where we found a significant spatial aggregation of two macrophyte species around C. platycarpa. Field transplantation experiments showed that C. platycarpa had a positive effect on the growth of both beneficiary species, and the intensity of this facilitative effect was correlated with the heterogeneous hydrodynamic conditions created within and around C. platycarpa patches. Our results emphasize the importance of self-organized patchiness in promoting species coexistence by creating a landscape of facilitation, where new niches and facilitative effects arise in different locations. Understanding the interplay between competition and facilitation is therefore essential for successful management of biodiversity in many ecosystems. © 2018 The Authors Ecology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Ecological Society of America.

  9. The application of f-elements in ecological research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Knaus, R.M.

    1991-01-01

    The utilization of f-elements has a relatively minor status as a research tool in the biological sciences, especially ecology, because they play neither positive nor deleterious roles in plant and animal nutrition. Additionally, detection and quantification via instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) of environmental samples is not yet routine. At Louisiana State University, La, Sm, and Dy have been used successfully as activable stable tracers in a wide range of ecological studies including the quantification using Sm and Dy of short-term sedimentary and erosional processes in wetlands; and behavior studies using Sm on agricultural lands where radioisotopes are precluded; the sorption of Dy and La by roots of stream-side trees; and the quantification of exogenous Dy and Sm from animal decay products in streams. With advances in sample automation and standardization in INAA detection methods, the quantification of f-element tracers in complex biological matrices is within reach of ecological scientists

  10. Amchitka bioenvironmental program. Geomorphology and plant ecology: an assessment of the impact of AEC nuclear test on Amchitka

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Everett, K.R.; Amundsen, C.C.

    1975-03-01

    The U. S. Atomic Energy Commission's underground nuclear testing on Amchitka has included two nuclear detonations: Milrow (about 1-megaton) in October 1969, and Cannikin (a little less than 5-megatons) in November 1971. This report assesses the impact of these tests on the basis of information collected since 1967 and through the 1973 growing season. To make these assessments and predictions realistic it was necessary to develop general descriptions of Amchitka's geomorphology, terrestrial plant ecology, and physical environment; and to assess the effects of man's previous use of the Island through World War II and the DOD Long Shot test. Mapping methods and methods for plant-community and soil-type studies and definitions are described because they were used to predict vegetative recovery on disturbed areas which are shown to have their counterparts as a consequence of the Island's natural landscape dynamics. Four annotated plates, covering the study area (45 percent of the Island), show disturbances (1) before 1948, (2) 1948 to 1969 before Milrow, (3) Milrow to 1971 before Cannikin, and (4) during 1971 after Cannikin. A fifth plate shows the plant community distribution in the study area. While classic sequential plant succession cannot be demonstrated on Amchitka, revegetation in disturbed areas, more properly described as recovery, is described for the various disturbances of terrain and vegetation cover. The photographs are keyed to indicate recovery time from date indicated, type of disturbance, and expected plant-community shift, as well as type of newly exposed or flooded substrate, drainage shifts, and other shock-related phenomena. (U.S.)

  11. Insights into deep-time terrestrial carbon cycle processes from modern plant isotope ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheldon, N. D.; Smith, S. Y.

    2012-12-01

    While the terrestrial biosphere and soils contain much of the readily exchangeable carbon on Earth, how those reservoirs function on long time scales and at times of higher atmospheric CO2 and higher temperatures is poorly understood, which limits our ability to make accurate future predictions of their response to anthropogenic change. Recent data compilation efforts have outlined the response of plant carbon isotope compositions to a variety of environmental factors including precipitation amount and timing, elevation, and latitude. The compilations involve numerous types of plants, typically only found at a limited number of climatic conditions. Here, we expand on those efforts by examining the isotopic response of specific plant groups found both globally and across environmental gradients including: 1) ginkgo, 2) conifers, and 3) C4 grasses. Ginkgo is presently widely distributed as a cultivated plant and the ginkgoalean fossil record spans from the Permian to the present, making it an ideal model organism to understand climatic influence on carbon cycling both in modern and ancient settings. Ginkgo leaves have been obtained from a range of precipitation conditions (400-2200 mm yr-1), including dense sampling from individuals and populations in both Mediterranean and temperate climate areas and samples of different organs and developmental stages. Ginkgo carbon isotope results plot on the global C3 plant array, are consistent among trees at single sites, among plant organs, and among development stages, making ginkgo a robust recorder of both climatic conditions and atmospheric δ13C. In contrast, a climate-carbon isotope transect in Arizona highlights that conifers (specifically, pine and juniper) record large variability between organs and have a very different δ13C slope as a function of climate than the global C3 plant array, while C4 plants have a slope with the opposite sign as a function of climate. This has a number of implications for paleo

  12. Plant quality and conspecific density effects on Anaphothrips obscurus (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) wing diphenism and population ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reisig, Dominic D; Godfrey, Larry D; Marcum, Daniel B

    2010-04-01

    Factors that influence thysanopteran wing diphenism are not well known. In these studies, the impact of food quality, mediated through nitrogen addition, and conspecific density was explored on the wing diphenism of an herbivorous thrips species (Anaphothrips obscurus Müller) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). In the first study, nitrogen was added to timothy grass (Phleum pretense L.) (Poales: Poaceae) transplants, and naturally occurring thrips populations were caged on the plants. Thrips abundance and foliar nutrients were assessed every 2 wk. A separate factorial experiment in growth chambers explored the impact of both plant nitrogen addition and thrips abundance on wing diphenism. Thrips density was manipulated by adding either 3 or 40 thrips to potted and caged timothy. Thrips abundance and foliar nutrients were measured 58 d after treatment placement. Plant quality directly affected thrips wing diphenism independent of thrips density in both experiments. Near the end of the field cage experiment, density may have indirectly impacted wing diphenism. In both experiments, plant quality and thrips density interacted to affect thrips population abundance. Plant quality alone can affect thrips wing diphenism, but it remains unclear whether density alone can affect thrips wing diphenism. This is a unique and understudied system that will be useful to examine generalized theories on the negative interaction between reproduction and dispersal.

  13. Heavy Metal Pollution and Ecological Assessment around the Jinsha Coal-Fired Power Plant (China).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Xianfei; Hu, Jiwei; Qin, Fanxin; Quan, Wenxuan; Cao, Rensheng; Fan, Mingyi; Wu, Xianliang

    2017-12-18

    Heavy metal pollution is a serious problem worldwide. In this study, 41 soil samples and 32 cabbage samples were collected from the area surrounding the Jinsha coal-fired power plant (JCFP Plant) in Guizhou Province, southwest China. Pb, Cd, Hg, As, Cu and Cr concentrations in soil samples and cabbage samples were analysed to study the pollution sources and risks of heavy metals around the power plant. The results indicate that the JCFP Plant contributes to the Pb, Cd, As, Hg, Cu, and Cr pollution in nearby soils, particularly Hg pollution. Cu and Cr in soils from both croplands and forestlands in the study area derive mainly from crustal materials or natural processes. Pb, Cd and As in soils from croplands arise partly through anthropogenic activities, but these elements in soils from forestlands originate mainly from crustal materials or natural processes. Hg pollution in soils from both croplands and forestlands is caused mainly by fly ash from the JCFP Plant. The cabbages grown in the study area were severely contaminated with heavy metals, and more than 90% of the cabbages had Pb concentrations exceeding the permissible level established by the Ministry of Health and the Standardization Administration of the People's Republic of China. Additionally, 30% of the cabbages had As concentrations exceeding the permissible level. Because forests can protect soils from heavy metal pollution caused by atmospheric deposition, close attention should be given to the Hg pollution in soils and to the concentrations of Pb, As, Hg and Cr in vegetables from the study area.

  14. Reproductive Indicators of Leguminous Plants as a Characteristic of the Ecological State of Urban Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamaletdinov, R. I.; Okulova, S. M.; Gavrilova, E. A.; Zakhvatova, A. A.

    2018-01-01

    This article examines the results of many years of research on the reproductive performance of six species of leguminous plants (FabaceaeLind., 1836) under conditions of urbanization of habitat (Kazan). The range of variability of the main reproductive indices in six species is illustrated: the potential productivity, the actual productivity of the six main types of leguminous plants. The features of variability of seed death at different stages of development are shown depending on habitat conditions. It is established that the main regularities of changes in reproductive parameters depending on habitat conditions are manifested both in native species and in the introduced species Caraganaarborescens Lam., 1785. Based on the results of the study we made conclusion about the advisability of monitoring the reproductive parameters of leguminous plants for indicating the state of the environment in a large city.

  15. Sequestration of plant secondary metabolites by insect herbivores: molecular mechanisms and ecological consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Matthias; Robert, Christelle Am

    2016-04-01

    Numerous insect herbivores can take up and store plant toxins as self-defense against their own natural enemies. Plant toxin sequestration is tightly linked with tolerance strategies that keep the toxins functional. Specific transporters have been identified that likely allow the herbivore to control the spatiotemporal dynamics of toxin accumulation. Certain herbivores furthermore possess specific enzymes to boost the bioactivity of the sequestered toxins. Ecologists have studied plant toxin sequestration for decades. The recently uncovered molecular mechanisms in combination with transient, non-transgenic systems to manipulate insect gene expression will help to understand the importance of toxin sequestration for food-web dynamics in nature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Development of concepts of plants activity, its ecological role and methods of its assessment in ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Savinov Alexander

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available When studying the species activity in the phytocoenoses, three methodological approaches are used: coenotipic, status and ergontic. The latter is proposed for the first time and based on the fact that the activity of plant organisms of a given species is considered as a set of interactions of these organisms with each other, with other organisms and abiotic components of ecosystems. This interaction essentially reflects the rate of accumulation and generation of substances, energy and information by plant organisms. To calculate the activity of the plant species in this aspect, the appropriate formulas were proposed. When comparing the coenotipic, status and ergontic approaches, it was stated that these approaches can complement each other.

  17. Diversity and ecological ranges of plant species from dry inter-Andean valleys

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Quintana, Catalina

    found on steep slopes and in ravines. These areas of original dry valley vegetation preserve many wild relatives of cultivated plants on the one hand and old lineages of other wild plant groups. Dry inter-Andean valleys (DIAVs) in Ecuador therefore makeup a biodiversity hot spot for both plants......Dry valleys in the American Andes and other mountains have provided excellent agricultural lands since millennia. Besides agriculture, wood extraction and the establishment of urban areas have diminished the native vegetation of these valleys. Consequently the original vegetation is now mostly...... and animals, but unfortunately only very few botanical studies have been carried out in these areas. This thesis intends to shed light on the vegetation of the Dry Ecuadorean Inter-Andean Valleys in four chapters, each with a different focus. 1) A review paper that summarizes all scientific knowledge...

  18. Simulation and experimental studies of operators' decision styles and crew composition while using an ecological and traditional user interface for the control room of a nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meshkati, N.; Buller, B.J.; Azadeh, M.A.

    1995-01-01

    The goal of this research is threefold: (1) use of the Skill-, Rule-, and Knowledge-based levels of cognitive control -- the SRK framework -- to develop an integrated information processing conceptual framework (for integration of workstation, job, and team design); (2) to evaluate the user interface component of this framework -- the Ecological display; and (3) to analyze the effect of operators' individual information processing behavior and decision styles on handling plant disturbances plus their performance on, and preference for, Traditional and Ecological user interfaces. A series of studies were conducted. In Part I, a computer simulation model and a mathematical model were developed. In Part II, an experiment was designed and conducted at the EBR-II plant of the Argonne National Laboratory-West in Idaho Falls, Idaho. It is concluded that: the integrated SRK-based information processing model for control room operations is superior to the conventional rule-based model; operators' individual decision styles and the combination of their styles play a significant role in effective handling of nuclear power plant disturbances; use of the Ecological interface results in significantly more accurate event diagnosis and recall of various plant parameters, faster response to plant transients, and higher ratings of subject preference; and operators' decision styles affect on both their performance and preference for the Ecological interface

  19. Simulation and experimental studies of operators` decision styles and crew composition while using an ecological and traditional user interface for the control room of a nuclear power plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meshkati, N.; Buller, B.J.; Azadeh, M.A. [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States)

    1995-04-01

    The goal of this research is threefold: (1) use of the Skill-, Rule-, and Knowledge-based levels of cognitive control -- the SRK framework -- to develop an integrated information processing conceptual framework (for integration of workstation, job, and team design); (2) to evaluate the user interface component of this framework -- the Ecological display; and (3) to analyze the effect of operators` individual information processing behavior and decision styles on handling plant disturbances plus their performance on, and preference for, Traditional and Ecological user interfaces. A series of studies were conducted. In Part I, a computer simulation model and a mathematical model were developed. In Part II, an experiment was designed and conducted at the EBR-II plant of the Argonne National Laboratory-West in Idaho Falls, Idaho. It is concluded that: the integrated SRK-based information processing model for control room operations is superior to the conventional rule-based model; operators` individual decision styles and the combination of their styles play a significant role in effective handling of nuclear power plant disturbances; use of the Ecological interface results in significantly more accurate event diagnosis and recall of various plant parameters, faster response to plant transients, and higher ratings of subject preference; and operators` decision styles affect on both their performance and preference for the Ecological interface.

  20. Application of process simulation for evaluation of ecologically benefical developments in thermal power plant technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schuster, G.

    2000-04-01

    Responsibility for the environment and a sustainable utilization of resources gain also in the production of electric power more and more importance. For this reason existing power generation processes have to be improved and alternatives to existing processes have to be developed. As a first step in this procedure process simulation is a powerful tool to evaluate the potentials of new developments. In this work it is shown, how new thermal power processes are modeled and simulated based on well-known thermodynamic and chemical correlations. Processes for thermal power plants using lignite with high water content and biomass as fuel are studied. In each case simulations are carried out for complete plants including all important unit operations. Based on a conventional thermal power plant for lignite different variants for efficiency improvement by fuel drying are examined. Additionally the potential of a process with gasification and gas turbine is discussed. Compared to a lignite power plant the preconditions for a biomass power plant are different. A promising option for the future seems to be small, decentralized combined heat and power plants. Therefore a process with simple and compact design including gasifier and gas turbine is regarded and sensitivity analyses are carried out. As well as for the lignite processes possible improvements by fuel drying are studied. The basis lignite power plant (drying in an impact rotor mill with hot flue gas) has an overall electric efficiency of 36 %. Alternative fuel drying processes (reducing water content from 54 w % to 10 w %) can increase efficiency to nearly 43 %. Using integrated air-blown gasification combined with gas turbine and steam turbine and additional fuel drying raises the efficiency up to 49 % in the case of cold gas cleanup and up to 50 percent in the case of hot gas cleanup. Efficiencies of the regarded biomass power plants are in the range of about 20 % (with a biomass water content of 25 w %). By

  1. Ecological Interface Design of Augmented Reality Display for Nuclear Power Plant Maintenance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, In; Seong, Poong Hyun

    2008-01-01

    The importance of maintenance in nuclear power plants (NPPs) has been emphasized through many researches. The goals of maintenance in nuclear power plants are not only to reduce the number of shutdowns which directly affects to the profit, but also to prevent accidents or incidents hence improves nuclear safety. It is known that reduction of the rate of human error in maintenance tasks can be achieved if maintenance personnel are properly supported by maintenance support systems. Among many proposed maintenance support system, the use of augmented reality (AR) has been proposed

  2. Plant Traits Demonstrate That Temperate and Tropical Giant Eucalypt Forests Are Ecologically Convergent with Rainforest Not Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tng, David Y. P.; Jordan, Greg J.; Bowman, David M. J. S.

    2013-01-01

    Ecological theory differentiates rainforest and open vegetation in many regions as functionally divergent alternative stable states with transitional (ecotonal) vegetation between the two forming transient unstable states. This transitional vegetation is of considerable significance, not only as a test case for theories of vegetation dynamics, but also because this type of vegetation is of major economic importance, and is home to a suite of species of conservation significance, including the world’s tallest flowering plants. We therefore created predictions of patterns in plant functional traits that would test the alternative stable states model of these systems. We measured functional traits of 128 trees and shrubs across tropical and temperate rainforest – open vegetation transitions in Australia, with giant eucalypt forests situated between these vegetation types. We analysed a set of functional traits: leaf carbon isotopes, leaf area, leaf mass per area, leaf slenderness, wood density, maximum height and bark thickness, using univariate and multivariate methods. For most traits, giant eucalypt forest was similar to rainforest, while rainforest, particularly tropical rainforest, was significantly different from the open vegetation. In multivariate analyses, tropical and temperate rainforest diverged functionally, and both segregated from open vegetation. Furthermore, the giant eucalypt forests overlapped in function with their respective rainforests. The two types of giant eucalypt forests also exhibited greater overall functional similarity to each other than to any of the open vegetation types. We conclude that tropical and temperate giant eucalypt forests are ecologically and functionally convergent. The lack of clear functional differentiation from rainforest suggests that giant eucalypt forests are unstable states within the basin of attraction of rainforest. Our results have important implications for giant eucalypt forest management. PMID:24358359

  3. Land-Use History and Contemporary Management Inform an Ecological Reference Model for Longleaf Pine Woodland Understory Plant Communities.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brudvig, Lars A. [Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University; Orrock, John L. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin; Damschen, Ellen I. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin; et al, et al

    2014-01-23

    Ecological restoration is frequently guided by reference conditions describing a successfully restored ecosystem; however, the causes and magnitude of ecosystem degradation vary, making simple knowledge of reference conditions insufficient for prioritizing and guiding restoration. Ecological reference models provide further guidance by quantifying reference conditions, as well as conditions at degraded states that deviate from reference conditions. Many reference models remain qualitative, however, limiting their utility. We quantified and evaluated a reference model for southeastern U.S. longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities. We used regression trees to classify 232 longleaf pine woodland sites at three locations along the Atlantic coastal plain based on relationships between understory plant community composition, soils lol(which broadly structure these communities), and factors associated with understory degradation, including fire frequency, agricultural history, and tree basal area. To understand the spatial generality of this model, we classified all sites together. and for each of three study locations separately. Both the regional and location-specific models produced quantifiable degradation gradients–i.e., progressive deviation from conditions at 38 reference sites, based on understory species composition, diversity and total cover, litter depth, and other attributes. Regionally, fire suppression was the most important degrading factor, followed by agricultural history, but at individual locations, agricultural history or tree basal area was most important. At one location, the influence of a degrading factor depended on soil attributes. We suggest that our regional model can help prioritize longleaf pine woodland restoration across our study region; however, due to substantial landscape-to-landscape variation, local management decisions should take into account additional factors (e.g., soil attributes). Our study demonstrates the utility

  4. Land-Use History and Contemporary Management Inform an Ecological Reference Model for Longleaf Pine Woodland Understory Plant Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brudvig, Lars A.; Orrock, John L.; Damschen, Ellen I.; Collins, Cathy D.; Hahn, Philip G.; Mattingly, W. Brett; Veldman, Joseph W.; Walker, Joan L.

    2014-01-01

    Ecological restoration is frequently guided by reference conditions describing a successfully restored ecosystem; however, the causes and magnitude of ecosystem degradation vary, making simple knowledge of reference conditions insufficient for prioritizing and guiding restoration. Ecological reference models provide further guidance by quantifying reference conditions, as well as conditions at degraded states that deviate from reference conditions. Many reference models remain qualitative, however, limiting their utility. We quantified and evaluated a reference model for southeastern U.S. longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities. We used regression trees to classify 232 longleaf pine woodland sites at three locations along the Atlantic coastal plain based on relationships between understory plant community composition, soils (which broadly structure these communities), and factors associated with understory degradation, including fire frequency, agricultural history, and tree basal area. To understand the spatial generality of this model, we classified all sites together and for each of three study locations separately. Both the regional and location-specific models produced quantifiable degradation gradients–i.e., progressive deviation from conditions at 38 reference sites, based on understory species composition, diversity and total cover, litter depth, and other attributes. Regionally, fire suppression was the most important degrading factor, followed by agricultural history, but at individual locations, agricultural history or tree basal area was most important. At one location, the influence of a degrading factor depended on soil attributes. We suggest that our regional model can help prioritize longleaf pine woodland restoration across our study region; however, due to substantial landscape-to-landscape variation, local management decisions should take into account additional factors (e.g., soil attributes). Our study demonstrates the utility of

  5. Land-use history and contemporary management inform an ecological reference model for longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lars A Brudvig

    Full Text Available Ecological restoration is frequently guided by reference conditions describing a successfully restored ecosystem; however, the causes and magnitude of ecosystem degradation vary, making simple knowledge of reference conditions insufficient for prioritizing and guiding restoration. Ecological reference models provide further guidance by quantifying reference conditions, as well as conditions at degraded states that deviate from reference conditions. Many reference models remain qualitative, however, limiting their utility. We quantified and evaluated a reference model for southeastern U.S. longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities. We used regression trees to classify 232 longleaf pine woodland sites at three locations along the Atlantic coastal plain based on relationships between understory plant community composition, soils (which broadly structure these communities, and factors associated with understory degradation, including fire frequency, agricultural history, and tree basal area. To understand the spatial generality of this model, we classified all sites together and for each of three study locations separately. Both the regional and location-specific models produced quantifiable degradation gradients-i.e., progressive deviation from conditions at 38 reference sites, based on understory species composition, diversity and total cover, litter depth, and other attributes. Regionally, fire suppression was the most important degrading factor, followed by agricultural history, but at individual locations, agricultural history or tree basal area was most important. At one location, the influence of a degrading factor depended on soil attributes. We suggest that our regional model can help prioritize longleaf pine woodland restoration across our study region; however, due to substantial landscape-to-landscape variation, local management decisions should take into account additional factors (e.g., soil attributes. Our study demonstrates

  6. Drag forces of common plant species in temperate streams: consequences of morphology, velocity and biomass

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kaj Sand

    2008-01-01

    Swift flow in streams may physically influence the morphology and distribution of plants. I quantified drag as a function of velocity, biomass and their interaction on the trailing canopy of seven European stream species in an experimental flume and evaluated its importance for species distributi...... than an uneven distribution with the same biomass confined to dense patches surrounded by open flow channels. Thus, management strategies to ensure a patchy plants distribution should be suitable for combining agricultural drainage and ecological stream quality....

  7. A global method for calculating plant CSR ecological strategies applied across biomes world-wide

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pierce, S.; Negreiros, D.; Cerabolini, B.E.L.; Kattge, J.; Díaz, S.; Kleyer, M.; Shipley, B.; Wright, S.J.; Soudzilovskaia, N.A.; Onipchenko, V.G.; van Bodegom, P.M.; Frenette-Dussault, C.; Weiher, E.; Pinho, B.X.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Grime, J.P.; Thompson, K.; Hunt, R.; Wilson, P.J.; Buffa, G.; Nyakunga, O.C.; Reich, P.B.; Caccianiga, M.; Mangili, F.; Ceriani, R.M.; Luzzaro, A.; Brusa, G.; Siefert, A.; Barbosa, N.P.U.; Chapin III, F.S.; Cornwell, W.K.; Fang, Jingyun; Wilson Fernandez, G.; Garnier, E.; Le Stradic, S.; Peñuelas, J.; Melo, F.P.L.; Slaviero, A.; Tabarrelli, M.; Tampucci, D.

    2017-01-01

    Competitor, stress-tolerator, ruderal (CSR) theory is a prominent plant functional strategy scheme previously applied to local floras. Globally, the wide geographic and phylogenetic coverage of available values of leaf area (LA), leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and specific leaf area (SLA)

  8. Ecological impact from large constructions of hydroelectric power plants in Parana River, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bonetto, Argentino A.

    1992-01-01

    An analysis over environmental impacts on Parana River as a result of the hydroelectric power plants construction is presented. Hydroelectric dams, also including the planned ones, are showing during the explanation, and biologic aspects are discussed. 30 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs

  9. Ecological turmoil in evolutionary dynamics of plant-insect interactions: defense to offence

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mishra, Manasi; Lomate, P. R.; Joshi, R. S.; Punekar, S. A.; Gupta, V. S.; Giri, A. P.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 242, č. 4 (2015), s. 761-771 ISSN 0032-0935 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : plant-insect interaction * co-evolution * human interference * ecosystem * climatic change Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 3.239, year: 2015

  10. Index of Alien Impact: A method for evaluating potential ecological impact of alien plant species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alien plant species are stressors to ecosystems and indicators of reduced ecosystem integrity. The magnitude of the stress reflects not only the quantity of aliens present, but also the quality of their interactions with native ecosystems. We develop an Index of Alien Impact (IAI...

  11. Effects of ecological restoration alternative treatments on nonnative plant species establishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael T. Stoddard; Christopher M. McGlone; Peter Z. Fule

    2008-01-01

    Disturbances generated by forest restoration treatments have the potential for enhancing the establishment of nonnative species thereby impeding long-term native plant recovery. In a ponderosa pine forest next to the Fort Valley Experimental Forest, Arizona, we examined the establishment of nonnative species after three alternative treatments with different intensities...

  12. Proper survey methods for research of aquatic plant ecology and management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proper survey methods are essential for objective, quantitative assessment of the distribution and abundance of aquatic plants as part of research and demonstration efforts. For research, the use of the appropriate method is an essential part of the scientific method, to ensure that the experimenta...

  13. The late Paleozoic ecological-evolutionary laboratory, a land-plant fossil record perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Looy, Cindy; Kerp, Hans; Duijnstee, Ivo; DiMichele, Bill

    2014-01-01

    In this essay we examine the fossil record of land plants, focusing on the late Paleozoic. We explore the nature of this record in terms of what is preserved, where, why and with what biases. And as a consequence, how it can be used to answer questions posed at various spatial and temporal scales,

  14. Ecological Monitoring Program at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. First semiannual report, July-December 1984

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reith, C.C.; Louderbough, E.T.; Eastmond, R.J.; Rodriguez, A.L.

    1985-01-01

    This report presents a general framework for the Ecological Monitoring Program, as well as specific methods and objectives for the component subprograms. Also included are results and preliminary interpretations from the first round of sampling. In many cases, statistically valid findings will be possible only after several years of data have been accumulated. Interpretation of the aerial photographs indicates that surface disturbance and habitat change resulting from construction at the WIPP site is about 83% of the FEIS projected total. At present, the only statistically significant relationship which may reflect a site-related impact is an increased chloride concentration in surface soils downwind from the northwestern salt storage pile, but still well below thresholds for potential toxicity. Microbial and vegetation parameters appear unaffected by the elevated chloride levels. Somewhat higher ambient air temperatures relative to conditions at meteorological stations elsewhere in southeastern New Mexico is probably due to topographic influences from the cool air drainage patterns in the southeastern New Mexico region

  15. System of ecological monitoring and assessment (EMA) for nuclear power plant site areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vorob'ev, E.I.; Oleinikov, N.F.; Reznichenko, V.Yu.

    1988-01-01

    The goal of the EMA program is to improve the utilization of the natural and labor resources of the city of Sosnovyi Bor due to the opportune discovery of negative changes in the state of the surrounding environment and human health and to predict and assess the possible consequences of implementing technological and economic decisions and their optimization from the point of view of ecology with regard to reactor siting and sizing. The EMA system provides monitoring means and a data bank on the environment and health of workers and the population, a packet of programs for processing and analyzing data, and a set of models to describe and predict the condition of the object/environment/man system. The system monitors contamination sources, monitors and assesses aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, and accounts for meteorological and biosolar factors which impact on reactor siting

  16. Ecological aspects of air pollution from an iron-sintering plant at Wawa, Ontario

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gordon, A G; Gorham, E

    1963-01-01

    At Wawa, in northern Ontario, vegetation has been damaged severely by sulphur dioxide pollution from an iron-sintering plant. Damage is mainly restricted to a narrow strip northeast from the sinter plant, since southwest winds are strongly predominant. It is traceable from the air for at least 20 miles in this direction and is estimated as severe within 11 miles and very severe within 5 miles. Within about 10 miles NE. From the sinter plant ground flora variety declines markedly, from about 20-40 species per 40 square meter quadrant beyond this distance to 0-1 species within 2 miles of the pollution source. At the same time sulphate in lake and pond waters increases greatly, from normal levels of about 0.2-0.3 milliequivalents per liter to more than 0.5 meq/l within 11 miles NE and up to 2 meq/l within 2 miles NE from the sinter plant. Waters within about 5 miles NE are strongly acid (pH 3.2-3.8), but are not low in calcium. Soluble sulphate in the surface soil rises sharply within about 4 miles NE from the pollution source, where, also, soil erosion is very pronounced, though traceable farther out. The phanerogms most tolerant of air pollution are Polygonum cilinode and Sambucus pubens, which are infrequent in the normal forest vegetation. In quadrant studies along a northeast transect, seedlings of Pinus strobus were not observed within 30 miles from the sinter plant, while those of Picea glauca, P. mariana, and Populus tremuliodes were not recorded within 15 miles.

  17. Ecological interface design for turbine secondary systems in a nuclear power plant : effects on operator situation awareness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwok, J.

    2007-01-01

    Investigations into past accidents at nuclear power generating facilities such as that of Three Mile Island have identified human factors as one of the foremost critical aspects in plant safety. Errors resulting from limitations in human information processing are of particular concern for human-machine interfaces (HMI) in plant control rooms. This project examines the application of Ecological Interface Design (EID) in HMI information displays and the effects on operator situation awareness (SA) for turbine secondary systems based on the Swedish Forsmark 3 boiling-water reactor nuclear power plant. A work domain analysis was performed on the turbine secondary systems yielding part-whole decomposition and abstraction hierarchy models. Information display requirements were subsequently extracted from the models. The resulting EID information displays were implemented in a full-scope simulator and evaluated with six licensed operating crews from the Forsmark 3 plant. Three measures were used to examine SA: self-rated bias, Halden Open Probe Elicitation (HOPE), and Situation Awareness Control Room Inventory (SACRI). The data analysis revealed that operators achieved moderate to good SA; operators unfamiliar with EID information displays were able to develop and maintain comparable levels of SA to operators using traditional forms of single sensor-single indicator (SS-SI) information displays. With sufficient training and experience, operator SA is expected to benefit from the knowledge-based visual elements in the EID information displays. This project was researched in conjunction with the Cognitive Engineering Laboratory at the University of Toronto and the Institute for Energy Technology (IFE) in Halden, Norway. (author)

  18. Economic and ecological assessment of impact of construction and operation of nuclear power plant as large capital construction project with respect to control of national economy development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bucek, M.

    1984-01-01

    The evaluation of costs and environmental impacts of the construction and operation of nuclear power plants is concentrated into two problem areas: 1. the calculation of capital and operation costs for the prevention and minimization of envirommental damage and restoration of the environment, 2. the calculation of damage to the environment of nuclear power plant construction and operation. The ecological cost benefit of capital costs is assessed. In Czechoslovakia there does not exist any method for converting cost effectiveness of investments into environmental protection. This problem is incorporated in the general method of assessing capital cost benefit. The relations are given for total socio-economic capital cost benefit and cost benefit of investments into environmental protection. Ecological investment is not exempted from the investment fund and from the point of view of content may be devided into net and gross ecological investment and from the point of view of time into preventive and compensation ecological investment. In the USSR the method has beem developed of the ecological and economic evaluation of projects for the construction and reconstruction of production units which proceeds from the evaluation of the negative environmental impact of wastes. The basic relations are given of the benefit of ecological investments. (E.S.)

  19. Antimicrobial Effect of 15 Medicinal Plant Species and their Dependency on Climatic Conditions of Growth in Different Geographical and Ecological Areas of Fars Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abbas Abdollahi

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: The effects of medicinal plants are variable in different conditions. Here, the antimicrobial effect of 15 medicinal plant species and their dependency on the climatic condition of growth in different geographical and ecological areas of Fars Province were studied. Materials and Methods: In This empirical study, the antimicrobial effect of hydro-alcoholic extract of 15 medicinal plant species was examined against standard bacterial strains comparing to conventional therapeutic antibiotics using disk diffusion assay and serial broth dilution. Results: All Extracts were effective against S.aureus ATCC 25923 growth; also Peganum harmala, Myrtus communis, Mentha pulegium, Mentha spp, and Zataria multiflora extracts were observed to have antimicrobial activity against E.coli ATCC 25922. This antimicrobial activity had partially similar results, comparing to conventional antibioticsConclusion: Medicinal plants produce various amounts of antimicrobial substances under the climatic and ecological conditions of each zone, which must be considered in manufacturing herbal medicines.

  20. Economic and ecologic considerations for bidding procedures and contracting for bio-waste fermentation plants; Oekonomische und oekologische Gesichtspunkte bei Ausschreibung und Vergabe von Bioabfallvergaerungsanlagen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Raussen, Thomas; Lootsma, Auke [Witzenhausen-Institut fuer Abfall, Umwelt und Energie GmbH, Witzenhausen (Germany); Oldhafer, Nils [umwelttechnik und ingenieure GmbH, Hannvoer (Germany)

    2013-07-01

    The use of the energetic and mass potentials of biological wastes in an integrated fermentation and composting plant needs extensive conceptual and planning activities. The call for tenders for the construction of plants is an EU-wide open procedure. Public waste management organizations are interested to receive profitable solutions with reliable operation and minimized ecological impacts. The minimum requirements and technical aspects are defined by the public waste management organizations.

  1. Ecological and evolutionary consequences of tri-trophic interactions: Spatial variation and effects of plant density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdala-Roberts, Luis; Parra-Tabla, Víctor; Moreira, Xoaquín; Ramos-Zapata, José

    2017-02-01

    The factors driving variation in species interactions are often unknown, and few studies have made a link between changes in interactions and the strength of selection. We report on spatial variation in functional responses by a seed predator (SP) and its parasitic wasps associated with the herb Ruellia nudiflora . We assessed the influence of plant density on consumer responses and determined whether density effects and spatial variation in functional responses altered natural selection by these consumers on the plant. We established common gardens at two sites in Yucatan, Mexico, and planted R. nudiflora at two densities in each garden. We recorded fruit output and SP and parasitoid attack; calculated relative fitness (seed number) under scenarios of three trophic levels (accounting for SP and parasitoid effects), two trophic levels (accounting for SP but not parasitoid effects), and one trophic level (no consumer effects); and compared selection strength on fruit number under these scenarios across sites and densities. There was spatial variation in SP recruitment, whereby the SP functional response was negatively density-dependent at one site but density-independent at the other; parasitoid responses were density-independent and invariant across sites. Site variation in SP attack led, in turn, to differences in SP selection on fruit output, and parasitoids did not alter SP selection. There were no significant effects of density at either site. Our results provide a link between consumer functional responses and consumer selection on plants, which deepens our understanding of geographic variation in the evolutionary outcomes of multitrophic interactions. © 2017 Botanical Society of America.

  2. Ecological consequences of the expansion of N2-fixing plants in cold biomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiltbrunner, Erika; Aerts, Rien; Bühlmann, Tobias; Huss-Danell, Kerstin; Magnusson, Borgthor; Myrold, David D.; Reed, Sasha C.; Sigurdsson, Bjarni D.; Körner, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Research in warm-climate biomes has shown that invasion by symbiotic dinitrogen (N2)-fixing plants can transform ecosystems in ways analogous to the transformations observed as a consequence of anthropogenic, atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition: declines in biodiversity, soil acidification, and alterations to carbon and nutrient cycling, including increased N losses through nitrate leaching and emissions of the powerful greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O). Here, we used literature review and case study approaches to assess the evidence for similar transformations in cold-climate ecosystems of the boreal, subarctic and upper montane-temperate life zones. Our assessment focuses on the plant genera Lupinus and Alnus, which have become invasive largely as a consequence of deliberate introductions and/or reduced land management. These cold biomes are commonly located in remote areas with low anthropogenic N inputs, and the environmental impacts of N2-fixer invasion appear to be as severe as those from anthropogenic N deposition in highly N polluted areas. Hence, inputs of N from N2 fixation can affect ecosystems as dramatically or even more strongly than N inputs from atmospheric deposition, and biomes in cold climates represent no exception with regard to the risk of being invaded by N2-fixing species. In particular, the cold biomes studied here show both a strong potential to be transformed by N2-fixing plants and a rapid subsequent saturation in the ecosystem’s capacity to retain N. Therefore, analogous to increases in N deposition, N2-fixing plant invasions must be deemed significant threats to biodiversity and to environmental quality.

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

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

    2014-01-01

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

  4. Monitoring ethylene emissions from plants cultured for a controlled ecological life support system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corey, Kenneth A.

    1995-01-01

    Emission of hydrocarbons and other volatile compounds by materials and organisms in closed environments will be a major concern in the design and management of advanced life support systems with a bioregenerative component. Ethylene, a simple hydrocarbon synthesized by plants, is involved in the elicitation of a wide range of physiological responses. In closed environments, ethylene may build up to levels which become physiologically active. In several growouts of 'Yecora Rojo' wheat in Kennedy Space Center's Biomass Production Chamber (BPC), it was observed that leaf flecking and rolling occurred in the sealed environment and was virtually eliminated when potassium permanganate was used to scrub the atmospheric environment. It was suggested that ethylene, which accumulated to about 60 ppb in the chamber and which was effectively absorbed by potassium permanganate, was responsible for the symptoms. The objectives of this work were to: (1) determine rates of ethylene evolution from lettuce (Lactuca sativa cultivar Waldemann's Green) and wheat (Triticum aestivum cultivar Yecora Rojo) plants during growth and development; (2) determine the effects of exposure of whole, vegetative stage plants to exogenous ethylene concentrations in the range of what would develop in closed environment growth chambers; and (3) develop predictive functions for changes in ethylene concentration that would develop under different cropping and closed environment configurations. Results will lead to the development of management strategies for ethylene in bioregenerative life support systems.

  5. Soil to plant transfer values of 137 Cs in soils of tropical agro-ecological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wasserman, Maria Angelica; Ferreira, Ana Cristina Melo; Conti, Claudio Carvalho; Rochedo, Elaine Rua Rodriguez; Bartoly, Flavia; Viana, Aline Gonzalez; Moura, Glaucio Pereira; Poquet, Isabel; Perez, Daniel Vidal

    2002-01-01

    Recent radioecological studies have showed that some ecosystems present more suitable conditions for soil to plant transfer of some radionuclides, while others present lower transfer when compared with average values. Due to the difficulty to generate, experimentally, soil to plant transfer factors enough to cover the totality of existing soil and vegetation types, an alternative way has been the use of soil to reference plant transfer factor determined in various ecosystems. Trough the use of conversion factors, the reference transfer factor can be converted in values of transfer factor specific for a specific type of crop. These values can be used regionally to improve dose calculation and models for radiological risk assessments. This work presents experimental data for 137 Cs for reference crops grown up in Oxisol, Ultisol and Alfisol. These results allow the assessment of sensibility of main Brazilian soils regarding a radiological contamination with 137 Cs and provide regional parameters values. The results obtained in soils of tropical climate validate the international methodology aiming to derive generic transfer factor values for 137 Cs in reference crops based on a few soil properties such as fertility, pH and organic matter content. (author)

  6. {sup 137}Cs and {sup 40}K partitioning in the system soil-plant under different ecological conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Luksiene, B. [Center for Physical Sciences and Technology (Lithuania); Marciulioniene, D. [Nature Research Centre (Lithuania)

    2014-07-01

    In the environment {sup 137}Cs is exclusively of the anthropogenic origin. Among different released fission radionuclides, {sup 137}Cs is the most significant one as it contributes to long-term doses to population. It belongs to the group of radionuclides which under accidental situations can disperse worldwide because of air mass transport. {sup 137}Cs deposition in the Lithuanian terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems is basically related to the global fallout and contaminated air masses from the Chernobyl NPP accident. An extra load of {sup 137}Cs to the Lithuanian terrestrial ecosystems was determined after the Fukushima Daiichi NPP accident as well. Over the recent decades evident changes in the approach to the radiation protection of non-human species from ionizing radiation have taken place. Furthermore, long-term predictions of the mobility and bioavailability of {sup 137}Cs are required because of its penetration into the food chain. {sup 40}K is a typical lithophilic element and its geochemistry could be similar to that of {sup 137}Cs because they both are of the same valence state, +1. Investigation results of {sup 137}Cs and {sup 40}K behavior in the environmental systems in the literature are rather contradictory. Therefore, the aim of the present study is to assess {sup 137}Cs and {sup 40}K activity concentration in soil and various plants of a different root system and to compare bioavailability of these radionuclides under different environmental ecological conditions. {sup 137}Cs deposition distribution in the upper soil layer is different in the studied territory. The mean {sup 137}Cs activity concentrations in soil and plants in the post-Chernobyl period varied in a wide range. {sup 137}Cs activity concentrations in soil varied from about 30 Bq/kg to 340 Bq/kg, while in various plants and grasses the range was 45-119 Bq/kg. Mean values of the {sup 137}Cs transfer factor ranged from 0.1 to 1.4. The discrimination factor was determined to evaluate the

  7. Ecological systems as computer networks: Long distance sea dispersal as a communication medium between island plant populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanaa, Adnen; Ben Abid, Samir; Boulila, Abdennacer; Messaoud, Chokri; Boussaid, Mohamed; Ben Fadhel, Najeh

    2016-06-01

    Ecological systems are known to exchange genetic material through animal species migration and seed dispersal for plants. Isolated plant populations have developed long distance dispersal as a means of propagation which rely on meteorological such as anemochory and hydrochory for coast, island and river bank dwelling species. Long distance dispersal by water, in particular, in the case of water current bound islands, calls for the analogy with computer networks, where each island and nearby mainland site plays the role of a network node, the water currents play the role of a transmission channel, and water borne seeds as data packets. In this paper we explore this analogy to model long distance dispersal of seeds among island and mainland populations, when traversed with water currents, in order to model and predict their future genetic diversity. The case of Pancratium maritimum L. populations in Tunisia is used as a proof of concept, where their genetic diversity is extrapolated. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Modelling leaf, plant and stand flammability for ecological and operational decision making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zylstra, Philip

    2014-05-01

    Numerous factors have been found to affect the flammability of individual leaves and plant parts; however the way in which these factors relate to whole plant flammability, fire behaviour and the overall risk imposed by fire is not straightforward. Similarly, although the structure of plant communities is known to affect the flammability of the stand, a quantified, broadly applicable link has proven difficult to establish and validate. These knowledge gaps have presented major obstacles to the integration into fire behaviour science of research into factors affecting plant flammability, physiology, species succession and structural change, so that the management of ecosystems for fire risk is largely uninformed by these fields. The Forest Flammability Model (Zylstra, 2011) is a process-driven, complex systems model developed specifically to address this disconnect. Flame dimensions and position are calculated as properties emerging from the capacity for convective heat to propagate flame between horizontally and vertically separated leaves, branches, plants and plant strata, and this capacity is determined dynamically from the ignitability, combustibility and sustainability of those objects, their spatial arrangement and a vector-based model of the plume temperature from each burning fuel. All flammability properties as well as the physics of flame dimensions, angle and temperature distributions and the vertical structure of wind within the plant array use published sub-models which can be replaced as further work is developed. This modular structure provides a platform for the immediate application of new work on any aspect of leaf flammability or fire physics. Initial validation of the model examined its qualitative predictions for trends in forest flammability as a function of time since fire. The positive feedback predicted for the subalpine forest examined constituted a 'risky prediction' by running counter to the expectations of the existing approach, however

  9. Microbial and plant ecology of a long-term TNT-contaminated site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Travis, Emma R.; Bruce, Neil C.; Rosser, Susan J.

    2008-01-01

    The contamination of the environment with explosive residues presents a serious ecological problem at sites across the world, with the highly toxic compound trinitrotoluene (TNT) the most widespread contaminant. This study examines the soil microbial community composition across a long-term TNT-contaminated site. It also investigates the extent of nitroaromatic contamination and its effect on vegetation. Concentrations of TNT and its metabolites varied across the site and this was observed to dramatically impact on the extent and diversity of the vegetation, with the most heavily contaminated area completely devoid of vegetation. Bryophytes were seen to be particularly sensitive to TNT contamination. The microbial population experienced both a reduction in culturable bacterial numbers and a shift in composition at the high concentrations of TNT. DGGE and community-level physiological profiling (CLPP) revealed a clear change in both the genetic and functional diversity of the soil when soil was contaminated with TNT. - Long-term contamination of soil with TNT reduces the extent and diversity of vegetation, decreases culturable bacterial numbers and shifts the microbial community composition

  10. Dynamic plant ecology: the spectrum of vegetational change in space and time

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Delcourt, H R; Delcourt, P A; Webb, T III

    1983-01-01

    Different environmental forcing functions influence vegetational patterns and processes over a wide range of spatial and temporal scales. On the micro-scale (1 year to 5 x 10/sup 3/ years, 1 m/sup 2/ to 10/sup 6/m/sup 2/) natural and anthropogenic disturbances affect establishment and succession of species populations. At the macro-scale (5 x 10/sup 3/ years to 10/sup 6/ years and 10/sup 6/m/sup 2/ to 10/sup 12/m/sup 2/) climatic changes influence regional vegetational processes that include migrations of species as well as displacement of ecosystems. Mega-scale phenomena such as plate tectonics, evolution of the biota and development of global patterns of vegetation occur on the time scale of > 10/sup 6/ years and over areas > 10/sup 12/m/sup 2/. Our knowledge of past vegetational changes resulting from Quaternary climatic change can be used to predict biotic responses to future climatic changes such as global warming that may be induced by increased carbon dioxide (CO/sub 2/) concentrations in the atmosphere. The time scale for future climatic warming may be much more rapid than that characterizing the early- to mid-Holocene, increasing the probability of rapid turnover in species composition, changes in local and regional dominance of important taxa, displacement of species ranges and local extinction of species. Integration of ecological and paleoecological perspectives on vegetational dynamics is fundamental to understanding and managing the biosphere.

  11. Arbitrarily amplified DNA: New molecular approaches to plant breeding, ecology and evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Caetano-Anolles, G [Department of Biology, University of Oslo, Oslo (Norway)

    2001-11-01

    Several DNA fingerprinting techniques that use arbitrary primers to characterize, scan and tag genomic DNA were optimized and used to study plants and microbial pathogens. The generated arbitrarily amplified DNA (AAD) profiles could be tailored in their complexity and polymorphic content, allowing analysis of closely related organisms, such as vegetatively-propagated horticultural crops or clonal fungal populations. AAD markers were used in cultivar and strain identification, map-based cloning, and marker-assisted breeding, sometimes as sequence-tagged sites. Phenetic analysis using parsimony, cluster, and numerical methods was applied successfully to the identification of genetic relationships in turfgrass species such as bermudagrass, woody plants such as dogwoods, and floricultural species such as petunia and chrysanthemum. AAD profiles were used to measure for the first time a genome-wide mutation rate, directly in a plant. Mutation rates in vegetatively propagated bermudagrass were comparable to those in human, mice, fruit flies, and worms. In combination with established tools used in molecular systematics (e.g. rDNA sequence analysis), AAD markers tracked the introduction of exotic dogwood anthracnose-causing fungi in North America. As part of a breeding effort to combat dogwood diseases, AAD was used in pseudo-testcross mapping of the tree at the intra-specific level. Markers were efficiently generated despite the close relatedness of parental dogwood material. Finally, DNA markers and tags were also generated in soybean, and were used to construct high density maps and walk towards defined genomic regions in the positional cloning of the supernodulation nts-1 symbiotic gene. (author)

  12. Arbitrarily amplified DNA: New molecular approaches to plant breeding, ecology and evolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caetano-Anolles, G.

    2001-01-01

    Several DNA fingerprinting techniques that use arbitrary primers to characterize, scan and tag genomic DNA were optimized and used to study plants and microbial pathogens. The generated arbitrarily amplified DNA (AAD) profiles could be tailored in their complexity and polymorphic content, allowing analysis of closely related organisms, such as vegetatively-propagated horticultural crops or clonal fungal populations. AAD markers were used in cultivar and strain identification, map-based cloning, and marker-assisted breeding, sometimes as sequence-tagged sites. Phenetic analysis using parsimony, cluster, and numerical methods was applied successfully to the identification of genetic relationships in turfgrass species such as bermudagrass, woody plants such as dogwoods, and floricultural species such as petunia and chrysanthemum. AAD profiles were used to measure for the first time a genome-wide mutation rate, directly in a plant. Mutation rates in vegetatively propagated bermudagrass were comparable to those in human, mice, fruit flies, and worms. In combination with established tools used in molecular systematics (e.g. rDNA sequence analysis), AAD markers tracked the introduction of exotic dogwood anthracnose-causing fungi in North America. As part of a breeding effort to combat dogwood diseases, AAD was used in pseudo-testcross mapping of the tree at the intra-specific level. Markers were efficiently generated despite the close relatedness of parental dogwood material. Finally, DNA markers and tags were also generated in soybean, and were used to construct high density maps and walk towards defined genomic regions in the positional cloning of the supernodulation nts-1 symbiotic gene. (author)

  13. Can sacrificial feeding areas protect aquatic plants from herbivore grazing? Using behavioural ecology to inform wildlife management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin A Wood

    Full Text Available Effective wildlife management is needed for conservation, economic and human well-being objectives. However, traditional population control methods are frequently ineffective, unpopular with stakeholders, may affect non-target species, and can be both expensive and impractical to implement. New methods which address these issues and offer effective wildlife management are required. We used an individual-based model to predict the efficacy of a sacrificial feeding area in preventing grazing damage by mute swans (Cygnus olor to adjacent river vegetation of high conservation and economic value. The accuracy of model predictions was assessed by a comparison with observed field data, whilst prediction robustness was evaluated using a sensitivity analysis. We used repeated simulations to evaluate how the efficacy of the sacrificial feeding area was regulated by (i food quantity, (ii food quality, and (iii the functional response of the forager. Our model gave accurate predictions of aquatic plant biomass, carrying capacity, swan mortality, swan foraging effort, and river use. Our model predicted that increased sacrificial feeding area food quantity and quality would prevent the depletion of aquatic plant biomass by swans. When the functional response for vegetation in the sacrificial feeding area was increased, the food quantity and quality in the sacrificial feeding area required to protect adjacent aquatic plants were reduced. Our study demonstrates how the insights of behavioural ecology can be used to inform wildlife management. The principles that underpin our model predictions are likely to be valid across a range of different resource-consumer interactions, emphasising the generality of our approach to the evaluation of strategies for resolving wildlife management problems.

  14. THE GENESIS OF PHOTOSYNTHESIS TYPES AS THE BASIS OF ECOLOGICAL EXPANSION OF HALOPHYTIC PLANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pyurko O.Ye.

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The C3, C4, and CAM photosynthesis types are considerably differed by CO2 absorption intensity, its biochemistry, saturation level, water productivity, biological productivity, and other different features, which secure the plants survival at stress and extreme conditions. The aim of current research was to discover the photosynthesis peculiarities at halophytic plants species (Salicornia europaea L., Halimione pedunculata, Artemisia santonica L., Plantago lanceolata L. by salinity at model and natural conditions, and to generalize data in historical aspect. It was constituted that S. europaea L. was characterized by C3 photosynthesis passage which was switched on CAM CO2 fixation under soil salinity conditions till 4-4,5 %, but glycophyte A.santonica was immanent C4assimilation way of aspartate type.Analysis of literature data and own research allows to find out that in majority the C3photosynthesis dependence from environmental factors described by determinate curve with matched mathematical expression. It was suggested to generalize the data by Lagrange polynomial. The obtained results proved that the pattern of photosynthesis evolution is: C3 → C4 → CAM with commute possibilities: C3 → CAM; C4 → CAM.

  15. Ecological modulation of environmental stress: interactions between ultraviolet radiation, epibiotic snail embryos, plants and herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wahl, Martin

    2008-05-01

    1. The distribution of egg masses of the freshwater snails Lymnaea stagnalis and Planorbarius corneus on the undersides of water lily leaves (e.g. Nuphar lutea) is related to the prevalence of the leaf-mining beetle Galerucella nymphaeae. 2. When given the choice, Planorbarius significantly avoids leaves that were infested by the mining beetle. Conversely, Lymnaea did not discriminate against mined leaves. 3. Intact Nuphar leaves block over 95% of incident ultraviolet radiation. Yet, ultraviolet transmission reaches almost 100% under beetle mining scars. These are several times wider than snail embryos. 4. When exposed to natural sunlight, Lymnaea embryos proved to be resistant to ambient ultraviolet, while Planorbarius embryos were rapidly killed. Thus, one selective advantage of Planorbarius discrimination against mined leaves when depositing its eggs could be the avoidance of ultraviolet radiation passing through mining scars. 5. Other mining-related modifications of the leaves, reduced area, decreased longevity, altered aufwuchs (i.e. biofilm and epibionts) are discussed but seem less relevant for the oviposition preference of Planorbarius. 6. The discriminatory behaviour of this snail species was triggered by water-borne cues emitted by the damaged leaf, not by the eggs or larvae of the beetle. 7. This study illustrates how environmental stress on a given species, ultraviolet radiation in this case, can be ecologically buffered (shading by Nuphar) or enhanced (reduction of Nuphar shading through beetle mining) by associated species. It highlights how the impact of a given stress depends on the identity of the target species as well as on the identity and role of other species in the community.

  16. Primates, Provisioning and Plants: Impacts of Human Cultural Behaviours on Primate Ecological Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sengupta, Asmita; McConkey, Kim R; Radhakrishna, Sindhu

    2015-01-01

    Human provisioning of wildlife with food is a widespread global practice that occurs in multiple socio-cultural circumstances. Provisioning may indirectly alter ecosystem functioning through changes in the eco-ethology of animals, but few studies have quantified this aspect. Provisioning of primates by humans is known to impact their activity budgets, diets and ranging patterns. Primates are also keystone species in tropical forests through their role as seed dispersers; yet there is no information on how provisioning might affect primate ecological functions. The rhesus macaque is a major human-commensal species but is also an important seed disperser in the wild. In this study, we investigated the potential impacts of provisioning on the role of rhesus macaques as seed dispersers in the Buxa Tiger Reserve, India. We studied a troop of macaques which were provisioned for a part of the year and were dependent on natural resources for the rest. We observed feeding behaviour, seed handling techniques and ranging patterns of the macaques and monitored availability of wild fruits. Irrespective of fruit availability, frugivory and seed dispersal activities decreased when the macaques were provisioned. Provisioned macaques also had shortened daily ranges implying shorter dispersal distances. Finally, during provisioning periods, seeds were deposited on tarmac roads that were unconducive for germination. Provisioning promotes human-primate conflict, as commensal primates are often involved in aggressive encounters with humans over resources, leading to negative consequences for both parties involved. Preventing or curbing provisioning is not an easy task as feeding wild animals is a socio-cultural tradition across much of South and South-East Asia, including India. We recommend the initiation of literacy programmes that educate lay citizens about the ill-effects of provisioning and strongly caution them against the practice.

  17. Primates, Provisioning and Plants: Impacts of Human Cultural Behaviours on Primate Ecological Functions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asmita Sengupta

    Full Text Available Human provisioning of wildlife with food is a widespread global practice that occurs in multiple socio-cultural circumstances. Provisioning may indirectly alter ecosystem functioning through changes in the eco-ethology of animals, but few studies have quantified this aspect. Provisioning of primates by humans is known to impact their activity budgets, diets and ranging patterns. Primates are also keystone species in tropical forests through their role as seed dispersers; yet there is no information on how provisioning might affect primate ecological functions. The rhesus macaque is a major human-commensal species but is also an important seed disperser in the wild. In this study, we investigated the potential impacts of provisioning on the role of rhesus macaques as seed dispersers in the Buxa Tiger Reserve, India. We studied a troop of macaques which were provisioned for a part of the year and were dependent on natural resources for the rest. We observed feeding behaviour, seed handling techniques and ranging patterns of the macaques and monitored availability of wild fruits. Irrespective of fruit availability, frugivory and seed dispersal activities decreased when the macaques were provisioned. Provisioned macaques also had shortened daily ranges implying shorter dispersal distances. Finally, during provisioning periods, seeds were deposited on tarmac roads that were unconducive for germination. Provisioning promotes human-primate conflict, as commensal primates are often involved in aggressive encounters with humans over resources, leading to negative consequences for both parties involved. Preventing or curbing provisioning is not an easy task as feeding wild animals is a socio-cultural tradition across much of South and South-East Asia, including India. We recommend the initiation of literacy programmes that educate lay citizens about the ill-effects of provisioning and strongly caution them against the practice.

  18. Determinants of plant community assembly in a mosaic of landscape units in central Amazonia: ecological and phylogenetic perspectives.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Natalia Umaña

    Full Text Available The Amazon harbours one of the richest ecosystems on Earth. Such diversity is likely to be promoted by plant specialization, associated with the occurrence of a mosaic of landscape units. Here, we integrate ecological and phylogenetic data at different spatial scales to assess the importance of habitat specialization in driving compositional and phylogenetic variation across the Amazonian forest. To do so, we evaluated patterns of floristic dissimilarity and phylogenetic turnover, habitat association and phylogenetic structure in three different landscape units occurring in terra firme (Hilly and Terrace and flooded forests (Igapó. We established two 1-ha tree plots in each of these landscape units at the Caparú Biological Station, SW Colombia, and measured edaphic, topographic and light variables. At large spatial scales, terra firme forests exhibited higher levels of species diversity and phylodiversity than flooded forests. These two types of forests showed conspicuous differences in species and phylogenetic composition, suggesting that environmental sorting due to flood is important, and can go beyond the species level. At a local level, landscape units showed floristic divergence, driven both by geographical distance and by edaphic specialization. In terms of phylogenetic structure, Igapó forests showed phylogenetic clustering, whereas Hilly and Terrace forests showed phylogenetic evenness. Within plots, however, local communities did not show any particular trend. Overall, our findings suggest that flooded forests, characterized by stressful environments, impose limits to species occurrence, whereas terra firme forests, more environmentally heterogeneous, are likely to provide a wider range of ecological conditions and therefore to bear higher diversity. Thus, Amazonia should be considered as a mosaic of landscape units, where the strength of habitat association depends upon their environmental properties.

  19. Determinants of Plant Community Assembly in a Mosaic of Landscape Units in Central Amazonia: Ecological and Phylogenetic Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umaña, María Natalia; Norden, Natalia; Cano, Ángela; Stevenson, Pablo R.

    2012-01-01

    The Amazon harbours one of the richest ecosystems on Earth. Such diversity is likely to be promoted by plant specialization, associated with the occurrence of a mosaic of landscape units. Here, we integrate ecological and phylogenetic data at different spatial scales to assess the importance of habitat specialization in driving compositional and phylogenetic variation across the Amazonian forest. To do so, we evaluated patterns of floristic dissimilarity and phylogenetic turnover, habitat association and phylogenetic structure in three different landscape units occurring in terra firme (Hilly and Terrace) and flooded forests (Igapó). We established two 1-ha tree plots in each of these landscape units at the Caparú Biological Station, SW Colombia, and measured edaphic, topographic and light variables. At large spatial scales, terra firme forests exhibited higher levels of species diversity and phylodiversity than flooded forests. These two types of forests showed conspicuous differences in species and phylogenetic composition, suggesting that environmental sorting due to flood is important, and can go beyond the species level. At a local level, landscape units showed floristic divergence, driven both by geographical distance and by edaphic specialization. In terms of phylogenetic structure, Igapó forests showed phylogenetic clustering, whereas Hilly and Terrace forests showed phylogenetic evenness. Within plots, however, local communities did not show any particular trend. Overall, our findings suggest that flooded forests, characterized by stressful environments, impose limits to species occurrence, whereas terra firme forests, more environmentally heterogeneous, are likely to provide a wider range of ecological conditions and therefore to bear higher diversity. Thus, Amazonia should be considered as a mosaic of landscape units, where the strength of habitat association depends upon their environmental properties. PMID:23028844

  20. Floral Volatiles in Parasitic Plants of the Orobanchaceae. Ecological and Taxonomic Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter eTóth

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The holoparasitic broomrapes, Orobanche spp. and Phelipanche spp. (Orobanchaceae, are root parasites that completely depend on a host plant for survival and reproduction. There is considerable controversy on the taxonomy of this biologically and agronomically important family. Flowers of over 25 parasitic Orobanchaceae and a number of close, parasitic and non-parasitic, relatives emitted a complex blend of volatile organic compounds (VOCs, consisting of over 130 VOCs per species. Floral VOC blend-based phylogeny supported the known taxonomy in internal taxonomic grouping of genus and eliminated the uncertainty in some taxonomical groups. Moreover, phylogenetic analysis suggested separation of the broomrapes into two main groups parasitizing annual and perennial hosts, and for the annual hosts, into weedy and non-weedy broomrapes. We conclude that floral VOCs are a significant tool in species identification and possibly even in defining new species and can help to improve controversial taxonomy in the Orobanchaceae.

  1. Floral Volatiles in Parasitic Plants of the Orobanchaceae. Ecological and Taxonomic Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóth, Peter; Undas, Anna K.; Verstappen, Francel; Bouwmeester, Harro

    2016-01-01

    The holoparasitic broomrapes, Orobanche spp. and Phelipanche spp. (Orobanchaceae), are root parasites that completely depend on a host plant for survival and reproduction. There is considerable controversy on the taxonomy of this biologically and agronomically important family. Flowers of over 25 parasitic Orobanchaceae and a number of close, parasitic and non-parasitic, relatives emitted a complex blend of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), consisting of over 130 VOCs per species. Floral VOC blend-based phylogeny supported the known taxonomy in internal taxonomic grouping of genus and eliminated the uncertainty in some taxonomical groups. Moreover, phylogenetic analysis suggested separation of the broomrapes into two main groups parasitizing annual and perennial hosts, and for the annual hosts, into weedy and non-weedy broomrapes. We conclude that floral VOCs are a significant tool in species identification and possibly even in defining new species and can help to improve controversial taxonomy in the Orobanchaceae. PMID:27014329

  2. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF on a sandbank plant formation: ecology and potential for hydrocarbon oil mycorrhizoremediation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ocimar Ferreira de Andrade

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The sources of contamination related to the exploration, production, storage, transport, distribution and disposal of petroleum, and its products, carry risks that threaten fragile coastal environments, little studied and, thus, in need of attention from the scientific community. On the other hand, symbiont mechanisms essential for the very existence of many plant species, and their relation to contaminated soils, remain unknown. Despite the identification of several species of AMF halophytes soil communities in sandbanks, one can infer their bioremediation potential from studies in other types of soil, which, however, report the same genera of fungi as participants in mycorrhizoremediation processes of polluted soil. This study focuses on the application of biotechnology using Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi (AMF in soils impacted by petroleum hydrocarbons.

  3. Influence of ecological factors on the production of active substances in the anti-cancer plant Sinopodophyllum hexandrum (Royle T.S. Ying.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Liu

    Full Text Available The quality of traditional Chinese herbal medicine, which plays a very important role in the health system of China, is determined by the active substances produced by the plants. The type, content, and proportion of these substances may vary depending on ecological factors in areas where the plants are grown. Sinopodophyllum hexandrum (Royle T.S. Ying, an endangered plant species with great medical value, was investigated in eight production locations representative of its natural geographical distribution range in China. The correlation between the contents of the active ingredients extracted from the roots and rhizomes of S. hexandrum and the ecological factors were evaluated step-by-step using a series of computational biology methodologies. The results showed that ecological factors had significant effects on the contents but not on the types of the active ingredients in eight production locations. The primary ecological factors influencing the active substances included the annual average precipitation, July mean temperature, frost-free period, sunshine duration, soil pH, soil organic matter, and rapidly available potassium in the soil. The annual average precipitation was the most important determinant factor and was significantly and negatively correlated with the active ingredient contents (P < 0.001. In contrast, organic matter was the most important limiting factor and was significantly and positively correlated with the active substances. These ecological factors caused 98.13% of the total geographical variation of the active ingredient contents. The climate factors contributed more to the active ingredient contents than did the soil factors. It was concluded that from the view of the contents of the secondary metabolites and ecological factors of each growing location, in Jingyuan, Ningxia Province, and Yongdeng, Gansu Province, conditions were favorable to the production of podophyllotoxin and lignans, whereas in Shangri-La, Yunnan

  4. Influence of ecological factors on the production of active substances in the anti-cancer plant Sinopodophyllum hexandrum (Royle) T.S. Ying.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wei; Liu, Jianjun; Yin, Dongxue; Zhao, Xiaowen

    2015-01-01

    The quality of traditional Chinese herbal medicine, which plays a very important role in the health system of China, is determined by the active substances produced by the plants. The type, content, and proportion of these substances may vary depending on ecological factors in areas where the plants are grown. Sinopodophyllum hexandrum (Royle) T.S. Ying, an endangered plant species with great medical value, was investigated in eight production locations representative of its natural geographical distribution range in China. The correlation between the contents of the active ingredients extracted from the roots and rhizomes of S. hexandrum and the ecological factors were evaluated step-by-step using a series of computational biology methodologies. The results showed that ecological factors had significant effects on the contents but not on the types of the active ingredients in eight production locations. The primary ecological factors influencing the active substances included the annual average precipitation, July mean temperature, frost-free period, sunshine duration, soil pH, soil organic matter, and rapidly available potassium in the soil. The annual average precipitation was the most important determinant factor and was significantly and negatively correlated with the active ingredient contents (P Shangri-La, Yunnan Province, and Nyingchi, Tibet, conditions were favorable to the production of quercetin and kaempferol.

  5. Phenolic content, antioxidant potential and Aedes aegyptii ecological friend larvicidal activity of some selected Egyptian plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Hela, Atef A; Abdel-Hady, Nevein M; Dawoud, Gouda T M; Hamed, Abdo M; Morsy, Tosson A

    2013-04-01

    Polyphenols constitute a distinct group of natural compounds of medicinal importance exhibiting wide range of physiological activities as antioxidant, immunestimulant, antitumor and antiparasitic. Yellow fever and dengue fever are mosquito-borne infectious diseases transmitted by Aedes aegyptii, the presence of yellow fever in Sudan and dengue fever in Saudi Arabia are threats to Egypt with the reemerging of Ae. aegyptii in Southern Egypt, larvae control is feasible than flying adults. This work was conducted targeting estimation of the relative levels of total phenolic content, antioxidant potential and larvicidal activity of 110 selected Egyptian plants. The highest total phenolic contents were estimated in aqueous extracts of Coronilla scorpioides L., Forsskaolea tenacissima L., Crataegus sinaica Boiss., Pistacia khinjuk Boiss. and Loranthus acacia Benth.; they were 916.70 +/- 4.80, 813.70 +/- 4.16, 744.90 +/- 4.93, 549.00 +/- 3.93& 460.80 +/- 4.02 mg% while those of methanol extracts were estimated in Coronilla scorpioides, Forsskaolea tenacissima, Crataegus sinaica, Loranthus acacia and Pistacia khinjuk, they were 915.60-4.86, 664.60 +/- 4.16, 659.30 +/- 4.80, 590.80 +/- 4.49 & 588.00 +/- 3.85 mg% respectively. Investigation of the antioxidant potentials revealed that the most potent plants were Co-ronilla scorpioides, Forsskaolea tenacissima, Crataegus sinaica, Pistacia khinjuk and Loranthus acacia with calculated values of 454.80 +/- 4.83, 418.4 +/- 4.16, 399.10 +/- 4.90, 342.5 +/- 2.72 & 239.7 +/- 2.91% for aqueous extracts and 452.9 +/- 4.94, 389.6 +/- 4.6, 378.48 +/- 3.84, 352.3 +/- 3.06 & 346.5 +/- 2.98% for methanol extracts respectively while screening of larvicidal activity proved that Coronilla scorpioides, Forsskaolea tenacissima, Crataegus sinaica, Pistacia khinjuk and Loranthus acacia exhibited highest potency calculated as 22.53 +/- 2.01, 23.85 +/- 2.07, 28.17 +/- 2.06, 31.60 +/- 2.93 & 39.73 +/- 4.58 mg% aqueous extracts and 18.53 +/- 1.95, 18

  6. Floristic Inventory, Ecological Characteristics and Biological Spectrum of Plants of Parachinar, Kurram Agency, Pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Badshah, L; Hussain, F.; Sher, Z.

    2016-01-01

    The present work was carried out to evaluate the floristic checklist and environmental distinctiveness of Plants of Parachinar, Kurram Agency across the year during 2014- 2015. A total of 283 species of 222 genera among 85 families were recorded. Asteraceae with (29 Sp.) was the most dominant followed by, Poaceae with (20 Sp.), Papilionaceae, Lamiaceae each with (19 Sp.), Brassicaceae (16 Sp.), Solanaceae (13 Sp.), Rosaceae (9 Sp.) and Polygonaceae (7 Sp.). While Euphorbiaceae, Caryophylaceae and Pinaceaeeach with (6 Sp.) were the co-dominant taxa. Rest of the families possessed either 5 or fewer species. Based on the habitat 252 (89.04 percent) species were grew in dry places as wild mesophytes and xerophytes. Seventeen species (6.00 percent) were cultivated while 11 species (3.88 percent) were aquatic. There were 18 spiny species (6.36 percent). Among the perennial, majority were evergreen. Three species (1.06 percent) namely Cuscutareflexa, Periplocaaphylla and P. calophyllawere leafless. The leaf lamina was simple in 230 species (81.27 percent) and 50 species (17.66 percent) contained composite foliage. Therophytes107 (37.80 percent) and nanophanerophyte 47 species (16.66 percent) respectively were dominant life form groups. Leaf spectra revealed that nanophylls with 121 species (42.75 percent) and leptophylls with 89 (31.44 percent) were dominant leaf size classes. The vegetation was also characterized by microphylls and mesophylls but of least concern. (author)

  7. Possible ecological risk of two pharmaceuticals diclofenac and paracetamol demonstrated on a model plant Lemna minor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kummerová, Marie; Zezulka, Štěpán; Babula, Petr; Tříska, Jan

    2016-01-25

    Lemna minor is often used in environmental risk assessment and it can be supposed that usually evaluated parameters will be reliable even for assessing the risk of pharmaceuticals. Subtle changes in duckweed plant number, biomass production, and leaf area size induced by 10-day-exposure to diclofenac (DCF) and paracetamol (PCT) (0.1, 10, and 100 μg/L), excepting 100 μg/L DCF, are in contrast with considerable changes on biochemical and histochemical level. Both drugs caused a decrease in content of photosynthetic pigments (by up to 50%), an increase in non-photochemical quenching (by 65%) and decrease in relative chlorophyll fluorescence decay values (by up to 90% with DCF). Both DCF and especially PCT increased amount of reactive nitrogen and oxygen species in roots. DCF-induced effects included mainly increased lipid peroxidation (by 78%), disturbation in membrane integrity and lowering both oxidoreductase and dehydrogenase activities (by 30%). PCT increased the content of soluble proteins and phenolics. Higher concentrations of both DCF and PCT increased the levels of oxidised ascorbate (by 30%) and oxidised thiols (by up to 84% with DCF). Glutathion-reductase activity was elevated by both pharmaceuticals (nearly by 90%), glutathion-S-transferase activity increased mainly with PCT (by 22%). The early and sensitive indicators of DCF and PCT phytotoxicity stress in duckweed are mainly the changes in biochemical processes, connected with activation of defense mechanisms against oxidative stress. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Ecological life histories of the three aquatic nuisance plants, Myriophyllum spicatum, Potamogeton crispus and Elodea canadensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, S.A.; Shaw, B.H.

    1986-01-01

    The life histories of Myriophyllum spicatum L., Elodea canadensis Michx., and Potamogeton crispus L., serious aquatic nuisances in many regions of the world, are reviewed to provide insights into the life style of successful aquatic nuisance plants. Specifically, their distribution and spread in North America; their life cycle, productive and reproductive potential; and their ecosystem relationships are reviewed. Hopefully this review will improve a manager's ability to deal with aquatic nuisance problems. It also provides suggestions for basic research needed to develop more effective management practices. It was found that all three species possess a number of adaptations, including an ability to rapidly propagate vegetatively, an opportunistic nature for obtaining nutrients, a life cycle that favors cool weather, and a number of mechanisms which enhance photosynthetic efficiency, which allow them to proliferate. These three species do provide benefits to the ecosystem through their roles in materials cycling and energy flow. Therefore, management of these species should take an integrated approach which recognizes these benefits. The life history information available about the three species varies tremendously; however, a better understanding of resource gain and allocation is needed to manage all three species. Specifically, more research is needed to provide a better understanding of: 1) the role bicarbonate plays in photosynthesis, 2) the role roots play in supplying CO2 to the plabts, 3) resource accumulation and allocation under different temperature and light regimes, 4) resource allocation on a seasonal basis, and 5) nutrient cycling under different management regimes. ?? 1986 Dr W. Junk Publishers.

  9. Seed dispersal and establishment of endangered plants on Oceanic Islands: the Janzen-Connell model, and the use of ecological analogues.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis M Hansen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Janzen-Connell model states that plant-specific natural enemies may have a disproportionately large negative effect on progeny close to maternal trees. The majority of experimental and theoretical studies addressing the Janzen-Connell model have explored how it can explain existing patterns of species diversity in tropical mainland areas. Very few studies have investigated how the model's predictions apply to isolated oceanic islands, or to the conservation management of endangered plants. Here, we provide the first experimental investigation of the predictions of the Janzen-Connell model on an oceanic island, in a conservation context. In addition, we experimentally evaluate the use of ecological analogue animals to resurrect the functional component of extinct frugivores that could have dispersed seeds away from maternal trees. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In Mauritius, we investigated seed germination and seedling survival patterns of the critically endangered endemic plant Syzygium mamillatum (Myrtaceae in relation to proximity to maternal trees. We found strong negative effects of proximity to maternal trees on growth and survival of seedlings. We successfully used giant Aldabran tortoises as ecological analogues for extinct Mauritian frugivores. Effects of gut-passage were negative at the seed germination stage, but seedlings from gut-passed seeds grew taller, had more leaves, and suffered less damage from natural enemies than any of the other seedlings. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We provide the first experimental evidence of a distance-dependent Janzen-Connell effect on an oceanic island. Our results potentially have serious implications for the conservation management of rare plant species on oceanic islands, which harbour a disproportionately large fraction of the world's endemic and endangered plants. Furthermore, in contrast to recent controversy about the use of non-indigenous extant megafauna for re

  10. Ecological analyses and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brocksen, R.W.

    1977-01-01

    Progress is reported on the following: analysis of ecological impacts of construction and operation of nuclear power plants; fossil energy environmental project; ecological analysis of geothermal energy development; HUD modular integrated utility systems; expansion of uranium enrichment facilities at Portsmouth; environmental standard review plans; environmental assessment of cooling reservoirs; and analysis of fish impingement at power plants in the southeastern United States

  11. Between Design and Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørn, Mona Chor

    such vegetation, based on concepts and theories in plant community ecology. If these communities are based on local forbs there is a continuum in anthropogenic intervention from designed and intensively maintained to semi-natural herbaceous vegetation. Results from a large field experiment show that, after three...... colonised by grasses and eventually woody species. This thesis adds useful basic knowledge in plant community ecology and species-specific growth, which are relevant to research and planning in landscape architecture and ecology....

  12. Urbanization reduces and homogenizes trait diversity in stream macroinvertebrate communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnum, Thomas R; Weller, Donald E; Williams, Meghan

    2017-12-01

    More than one-half of the world's population lives in urban areas, so quantifying the effects of urbanization on ecological communities is important for understanding whether anthropogenic stressors homogenize communities across environmental and climatic gradients. We examined the relationship of impervious surface coverage (a marker of urbanization) and the structure of stream macroinvertebrate communities across the state of Maryland and within each of Maryland's three ecoregions: Coastal Plain, Piedmont, and Appalachian, which differ in stream geomorphology and community composition. We considered three levels of trait organization: individual traits, unique combinations of traits, and community metrics (functional richness, functional evenness, and functional divergence) and three levels of impervious surface coverage (low [10%]). The prevalence of an individual trait differed very little between low impervious surface and high impervious surface sites. The arrangement of trait combinations in community trait space for each ecoregion differed when impervious surface coverage was low, but the arrangement became more similar among ecoregions as impervious surface coverage increased. Furthermore, trait combinations that occurred only at low or medium impervious surface coverage were clustered in a subset of the community trait space, indicating that impervious surface affected the presence of only a subset of trait combinations. Functional richness declined with increasing impervious surface, providing evidence for environmental filtering. Community metrics that include abundance were also sensitive to increasing impervious surface coverage: functional divergence decreased while functional evenness increased. These changes demonstrate that increasing impervious surface coverage homogenizes the trait diversity of macroinvertebrate communities in streams, despite differences in initial community composition and stream geomorphology among ecoregions. Community

  13. Marine ecology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1977-01-01

    Studies on marine ecology included marine pollution; distribution patterns of Pu and Am in the marine waters, sediments, and organisms of Bikini Atoll and the influence of physical, chemical, and biological factors on their movements through marine biogeochemical systems; transfer and dispersion of organic pollutants from an oil refinery through coastal waters; transfer of particulate pollutants, including sediments dispersed during construction of offshore power plants; and raft culture of the mangrove oysters

  14. Land-use history and contemporary management inform an ecological reference model for longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lars A. Brudvig; John L. Orrock; Ellen I. Damschen; Cathy D. Collins; Philip G. Hahn; W. Brett Mattingly; Joseph W. Veldman; Joan L. Walker

    2014-01-01

    Ecological restoration is frequently guided by reference conditions describing a successfully restored ecosystem; however, the causes and magnitude of ecosystem degradation vary, making simple knowledge of reference conditions insufficient for prioritizing and guiding restoration. Ecological reference models provide further guidance by quantifying reference conditions...

  15. Planting the SEED : Towards a Spatial Economic Ecological Database for a shared understanding of the Dutch Wadden area

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Daams, Michiel N.; Sijtsma, Frans J.

    In this paper we address the characteristics of a publicly accessible Spatial Economic Ecological Database (SEED) and its ability to support a shared understanding among planners and experts of the economy and ecology of the Dutch Wadden area. Theoretical building blocks for a Wadden SEED are

  16. Assessment of traditional ecological knowledge and beliefs in the utilisation of important plant species: The case of Buhanga sacred forest, Rwanda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Runyambo Irakiza

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Traditional ecological knowledge is an integrated part of the African people and indeed the Rwandese for cultural purpose. Buhanga sacred forest is a relict forest of tremendous ecological importance to Rwandan society located in Musanze District. The aim of this study was to assess the traditional ecological knowledge and belief in the utilisation of some important plant species for the conservation of Buhanga sacred forest. Ecological information about ethnomedicinal and traditional practices were collected following structured questionnaire through interview involving eight traditional healers and three focus group discussions. Data were collected from the natural habitats, home gardens, farmlands and roadsides of Buhanga sacred forest. A total of 45 botanical taxa belonging to 28 families were reported to be used by the local community. Species such as Brillantaisia cicatricosa and Senna septemtrionalis were the popular species cited by traditional healers to treat human and animal diseases and ailments, respectively. The results of the study indicated that because of the cultural norms and values associated with the sacred forest, this has led to non-exploitation. The study presents key sites and plant species in which their use and belief can lead to their conservation. However, not only is it imperative to conserve traditional local knowledge for biocultural conservation motives but there is also need to train traditional healers on how to domesticate indigenous species as conservation measure because some species have become susceptible to extinction. Conservation implications: Highlighting indigenous species investigated in this research will provide a powerful tool for ensuring biodiversity conservation through community participation in a country of high population density in Africa. Some plant species that provided satisfactory Local Health Traditions among communities surrounding Buhanga can contribute as good material for further

  17. Plant species and communities assessment in interaction with edaphic and topographic factors; an ecological study of the mount Eelum District Swat, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murad Khan

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The current analyses of vegetation were aimed to study the different effects of environmental variables and plant species and communities interaction to these variables, identified threats to local vegetation and suggestion for remedial measures in the Mount Eelum, Swat, Pakistan. For assessment of environmental variability quantitative ecological techniques were used through quadrats having sizes of 2 × 2, 5 × 5 and 10 × 10 m2 for herbs, shrubs and trees respectively. Result of the present study revealed 124 plant species in the study area. Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA was used to analyze the ecological gradient of vegetation. The environmental data and species abundance were used in CANOCO software version 4.5. The presence absence data of plant species were elaborated with Cluster and Two Way Cluster Analysis techniques using PC-ORD version 5 to show different species composition that resulted in five plant communities. Findings indicate that elevation, aspect and soil texture are the strongest variables that have significant effect on species composition and distribution of various communities shown with P value 0.0500. It is recommended to protect and use sensibly whole of the Flora normally and rare species particularly in the region.

  18. Drivers of nitrogen transfer in stream food webs across continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norman, Beth C; Whiles, Matt R; Collins, Sarah M; Flecker, Alexander S; Hamilton, Steve K; Johnson, Sherri L; Rosi, Emma J; Ashkenas, Linda R; Bowden, William B; Crenshaw, Chelsea L; Crowl, Todd; Dodds, Walter K; Hall, Robert O; El-Sabaawi, Rana; Griffiths, Natalie A; Marti, Eugènia; McDowell, William H; Peterson, Scot D; Rantala, Heidi M; Riis, Tenna; Simon, Kevin S; Tank, Jennifer L; Thomas, Steven A; von Schiller, Daniel; Webster, Jackson R

    2017-12-01

    Studies of trophic-level material and energy transfers are central to ecology. The use of isotopic tracers has now made it possible to measure trophic transfer efficiencies of important nutrients and to better understand how these materials move through food webs. We analyzed data from thirteen 15 N-ammonium tracer addition experiments to quantify N transfer from basal resources to animals in headwater streams with varying physical, chemical, and biological features. N transfer efficiencies from primary uptake compartments (PUCs; heterotrophic microorganisms and primary producers) to primary consumers was lower (mean 11.5%, range 100%). Total N transferred (as a rate) was greater in streams with open compared to closed canopies and overall N transfer efficiency generally followed a similar pattern, although was not statistically significant. We used principal component analysis to condense a suite of site characteristics into two environmental components. Total N uptake rates among trophic levels were best predicted by the component that was correlated with latitude, DIN:SRP, GPP:ER, and percent canopy cover. N transfer efficiency did not respond consistently to environmental variables. Our results suggest that canopy cover influences N movement through stream food webs because light availability and primary production facilitate N transfer to higher trophic levels. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  19. Ecological effects of transgene persistence on plant communities in the presence and absence of drift levels of glyphosate herbicide

    Science.gov (United States)

    In 2005, plant communities were constructed in outdoor sunlit chambers that contained 3 round tubs having a surface area of 1.2 m2 and a depth of 0.6 m. Six plant types were planted in triplicate using the same spatial arrangement in each tub. Three of the six plant types were se...

  20. Ecological and health risk-based characterization of agricultural soils contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the vicinity of a chemical plant in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Geng; Niu, Junjie; Guo, Wenjiong; An, Xiangsheng; Zhao, Long

    2016-11-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) from chemical plants can cause serious pollution of surrounding agricultural soils. A comprehensive study of agricultural soils was conducted in the vicinity of a chemical plant in China to characterize the soil PAH concentration, as well as their composition and sources. Human health and a screening-level ecological risk assessment were conducted for PAH contamination in agricultural soils. The results showed that the total concentrations of 16 priority PAHs ranged from 250.49 to 9387.26 ng g(-1), with an average of 2780.42 ng g(-1). High molecular weight PAHs (four to six rings) were the dominant component, accounting for more than 60% of all PAHs. Principal component analysis (PCA) and positive matrix factorization model (PMF) suggested that diesel emissions, coal combustion, coke ovens, and fuel combustion and gasoline emissions were the main sources of PAHs in agricultural soils. The ecological risk assessment results based on the effects range-low (ERL), the effects range-median (ERM), and the ecological screening levels (ESL) indicated that the exposure to ∑PAH16 was >ERL, >ERM, and ≥ERL and ESL at 78.1% of the soil sampling stations, and could induce biological effects in mammals. The Bapeq concentrations posed a potential carcinogenic risk to humans. Further risk management and control of soil PAHs in these agricultural soils is required to ensure the safety of the biocoenosis and human health. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Plant Type and Its Effects on Canopy Structure at Heading Stage in Various Ecological Areas for a Two-line Hybrid Rice Combination, Liangyoupeijiu

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuan-gen LU

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available A two-line hybrid rice combination, Liangyoupeijiu, was used to estimate several factors of plant type, and environmental models for these factors at the heading stage were established using the data of eight ecological experimental sites in 2006 and 2007. According to climatic data from 1951 to 2005, the differences in those factors and their effects on plant canopy were analyzed for four rice cropping areas in China, including South China, the middle-lower reaches of the Yangtze River, Sichuan Basin, and river valley in Yunnan, China. The thickness of leaf layer (the distance from pulvinus of the third leaf from the top to the tip of flag leaf and distribution of leaf area could be used as candidate indices for the plant type of a rice canopy.

  2. Descriptors of natural thermal regimes in streams and their responsiveness to change in the Pacific Northwest of North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivan Arismendi; Sherri L. Johnson; Jason B. Dunham; Roy Haggerty

    2013-01-01

    1. Temperature is a major driver of ecological processes in stream ecosystems, yet the dynamics of thermal regimes remain poorly described. Most work has focused on relatively simple descriptors that fail to capture the full range of conditions that characterise thermal regimes of streams across seasons or throughout the year.2. To more...

  3. Optimal Use of Agricultural Water and Land Resources through Reconfiguring Crop Planting Structure under Socioeconomic and Ecological Objectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian Tan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Many economic, social and ecological problems can be attributed to the scarcity and mismanagement of water and land resources. In this study, a multi-objective fuzzy–robust programming (MOFRP method was developed for supporting the optimal use of land and water resources in agriculture. MOFRP improved existing methods through taking ecological services of crop cultivation into account. It was also capable of reflecting fuzziness in preferences, priorities and parameters that were largely neglected in previous agricultural decision making. This method was applied to address a case in arid northwestern China. Optimal plans of crop cultivation reconfiguration were generated for sustaining local development under economic, ecological and social objectives as well as physical restraints in water and land resources. Compared to the status quo, the optimized plan would increase economic and ecological benefits by 12.2% and 18.8%, respectively. The efficiency of irrigation water could also be enhanced with the economic and ecological benefits per unit water being raised and the water consumption per unit land being reduced. The comparisons of the MOFRP model to four alternatives validated that it was capable of achieving satisfactory benefits and reducing system-violation risks without neglecting valuable uncertain information and ecological services of crops. The proposed method was also applicable to other multi-objective management problems under uncertainty without loss of generality.

  4. Organic carbon spiralling in stream ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Newbold, J D; Mulholland, P J; Elwood, J W; O' Neill, R V

    1982-01-01

    The term spiralling has been used to describe the combined processes of cycling and longitudinal transport in streams. As a measure or organic carbon spiralling, we introduced organic carbon turnover length, S, defined as the average or expected downstream distance travelled by a carbon atom between its entry or fixation in the stream and its oxidation. Using a simple model for organic carbon dynamics in a stream, we show that S is closely related to fisher and Likens' ecosystem efficiency. Unlike efficiency, however, S is independent of the length of the study reach, and values of S determined in streams of differing lengths can be compared. Using data from three different streams, we found the relationship between S and efficiency to agree closely with the model prediction. Hypotheses of stream functioning are discussed in the context of organic carbeon spiralling theory.

  5. Phytoremediation potential and ecological and phenological changes of native pioneer plants from weathered oil spill-impacted sites at tropical wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palma-Cruz, Felipe de J; Pérez-Vargas, Josefina; Rivera Casado, Noemí Araceli; Gómez Guzmán, Octavio; Calva-Calva, Graciano

    2016-08-01

    Pioneer native plant species from weathered oil spill-affected sites were selected to study their potential for phytoremediation on the basis of their ecological and phenological changes during the phytoremediation process. Experiments were conducted in field and in greenhouse. In field, native plants from aged oil spill-impacted sites with up 400 g of weathered petroleum hydrocarbons per kilogram soil were selected. In the impacted sites, the principal dominant plant species with potential for hydrocarbons removal were Cyperus laxus, Cyperus esculentus, and Ludwigia peploides. In greenhouse, the phenology of the selected plant species was drastically affected by the hydrocarbons level above 325 g total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) per kilogram soil after 2 years of phytoremediation of soils from the aged oil spill-impacted sites. From the phytoremediation treatments, a mix-culture of C. laxus, C. esculentus, and L. peploides in soil containing 325 g TPH/kg soil, from which 20.3 % were polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and 34.2 % were asphaltenes (ASF), was able to remove up 93 % of the TPH, while in unvegetated soil the TPH removal was 12.6 %. Furthermore, evaluation of the biodiversity and life forms of plant species in the impacted sites showed that phytoremediation with C. esculentus, alone or in a mix-culture with C. laxus and L. peploides, reduces the TPH to such extent that the native plant community was progressively reestablished by replacing the cultivated species resulting in the ecological recovery of the affected soil. These results demonstrate that native Cyperus species from weathered oil spill-affected sites, specifically C. esculentus and C. laxus, alone or in a mix-culture, have particular potential for phytoremediation of soils from tropical wetlands contaminated with weathered oil hydrocarbons.

  6. [Ecology and ecologies].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valera, Luca

    2011-01-01

    Ecology (from the Greek words οιχοσ, "house" and λογια "study of") is the science of the "house", since it studies the environments where we live. There are three main ways of thinking about Ecology: Ecology as the study of interactions (between humans and the environment, between humans and living beings, between all living beings, etc.), Ecology as the statistical study of interactions, Ecology as a faith, or rather as a science that requires a metaphysical view. The history of Ecology shows us how this view was released by the label of "folk sense" to gain the epistemological status of science, a science that strives to be interdisciplinary. So, the aim of Ecology is to study, through a scientific methodology, the whole natural world, answering to very different questions, that arise from several fields (Economics, Biology, Sociology, Philosophy, etc.). The plurality of issues that Ecology has to face led, during the Twentieth-century, to branch off in several different "ecologies". As a result, each one of these new approaches chose as its own field a more limited and specific portion of reality.

  7. Ecological analysis of plant cover of the permanent grassland ecosystem located in the vicinity of Novi Kneževac, Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Knežević Aleksa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A total of 205 taxa and stands of 12 plant communities were found to comprise the plant cover of the permanent grassland on the solonetz and solonchakic solonetz soils located in the vicinity of the town of Novi Kneževac (Vojvodina Province, Serbia. The registered taxa included 177 plant species, six subspecies, eight varieties, 13 forms and one lusus. The ecological analysis of the flora involved 191 taxa. That group consisted of 177 species, six subspecies, three varieties and five forms. The three varieties, Aster tripolium L. var. pannonicus ( Jacq. Beck, Chenopodium rubrum L. subsp. botryoides Sm. var. crassifolium (Hornem Kov. and Sonchus arvensis L. var. uliginosus (M.B. Grec. were used for analysis because their higher taxonomic categories were not recorded in the studied flora. The five forms, Aster sedifolius L. f. subsquamosus Soy, Bromus commutatus Schrad. f. violaceus Podp., Mentha aquatica L. f. erromera Top., Poa bulbosa L. f. vivipara Koel. and Scleranthus annus L. f. minimus Schur., were used for the same reason. The ecological analysis encompassed stands of all 12 recorded communities, i.e. ass. Scirpo-Phragmitetum W. Koch 1926, ass. Bolboschoenetum maritimi continentale Soy (1927 1957, ass. Acorelletum pannonici Soy (1939 1947, ass. Puccinelletum limosae (Rapcs. 1927 Soy 1930, ass. Pholiuro-Plantaginetum tenuiflorae (Rapcs. 1927 Wendel. 1943, ass. Hordeetum histricis (Soy 1933 Wendel. 1943, ass. Camphorosmetum annuae (Rapcs. 1916 Soy 1933 corr. Soy 1938, ass. Agrostio-Alopecuretum pratensis Soy (1933 1947, ass. Agrostio-Eleochariti-Alopecuretu geniculati (Magyar1928 Soy (1939 1947, ass. Artemisio-Festucetum pseudovinae (Magyar 1928 Soy 1945, ass. Achilleo-Festucetum pseudovinae (Magyar 1928 Soy 1945 and ass. Festuco-Andropogonetum ischaemi Vučk. 1985. The ecological analysis of the plant cover indicated that halophytes made 30.37% of the flora of the permanent grassland near the town of Novi Kneževac, and that the stands of

  8. Wasteland ecologies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoag, Colin Brewster; Bertoni, Filippo; Bubandt, Nils Ole

    2018-01-01

    landscapes, this article argues, are the result of unheralded multispecies collaboration that can be traced empirically by attending ethnographically to multispecies forms of “gain-making,” the ways in which humans and other species leverage difference to find economic and ecological opportunity....... in the 1970s, when prevailing perceptions were that the entire mining area was a polluted wasteland, the AFLD Fasterholt waste and recycling plant has since changed in response to new EU waste management regulations, as well as the unexpected proliferation of non-human life in the area. Based on field...... research at this site—an Anthropocene landscape in the heartland of an EU-configured welfare state — this article is a contribution to the multispecies ethnography and political ecology of wastelands. We argue that “waste” is a co-species, biopolitical happening — a complex symbolic, political, biological...

  9. Wetland craft plants in KwaZulu-Natal: an ecological review of har­vesting impacts and implications for sustainable utilization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. H. Traynor

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available In South Africa, wetland plants have been used for centuries and they continue to be harvested for subsistence and commercial purposes. Fibres for crafts are collected by cutting the aboveground parts. KwaZulu-Natal is one of the major basket-producing regions in southern Africa and at least twenty-two species of wetland plants are harvested for crafts. A literature review of the harvested species revealed that the impacts of cutting have only been extensively investigated for Phragmites australis (Cav. Steud. and Juncus kraussii Hochst. The review suggested that, where plants display strong seasonal aboveground productivity patterns, cutting should take place after shoot senescence and before new shoot emergence to minimize damage to plants. Cutting in the short term could increase the density of green stems. However, in the long term in  Phragmites australis, it may deplete the rhizome reserves and reduce the density of useable (longer and thicker culms.The opportunity for sustainable harvests was investigated by considering the geographic distribution, whether species are habitat specific or not, and local population sizes of the craft plants. Juncus kraussii is of the greatest conservation concern.Ecologically sustainable wetland plant harv esting could contribute to the wise use of wetlands, an approach promoted nationally and internationally.

  10. Ecology of Meimuna mongolica (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) Nymphs: Instars, Morphological Variation, Vertical Distribution and Population Density, Host-Plant Selection, and Emergence Phenology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qinglong; Yang, Mingsheng; Liu, Yunxiang; Wei, Cong

    2015-01-01

    The cicada Meimuna mongolica (Distant) (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) is one of the most important pests of economic forest in Guanzhong Plain of Shaanxi Province, China. Information about ecological characteristics and some sustainable control measures of this species is urgently required for its control. In this study, nymphal instars, morphological variation, vertical distribution, and population density in soil, and emergence phenology of nymphs of M. mongolica on three main host plants (Pinus tabuliformis Carr., Populus tomentosa Carr., and Pyrus xerophila Yü) were studied, based on combined morphological and molecular identification, investigation of the first-instar nymphs hatched from eggs and others excavated from soil, and investigation of exuviae in the adult emergence period. Five nymphal instars of M. mongolica were redetermined according to the distribution plots of the head capsule widths of the nymphs. Nymphs of third and fourth instars showed morphological variation, which is closely related to host-plant association. The mean densities of nymphs in soil under the three host plants were significantly different, indicating a distinct host preference. The nymphs could extend their distribution from the 0–10 cm soil layer to the 51–60 cm soil layer underground but not beyond 60 cm soil layer under all the three host plants. The 21–30 cm soil layer under all the three host plants has the highest nymphal population density. The sex ratio of the entire population was nearly 50:50, but males dominated in the early half of the duration of the emergence. These ecological characteristics of M. mongolica could provide important information for sustainable control measures.

  11. Two-way plant mediated interactions between root-associated microbes and insects: from ecology to mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pangesti, N.P.D.; Pineda Gomez, A.M.; Pieterse, C.M.J.; Dicke, M.; Loon, van J.J.A.

    2013-01-01

    Plants are members of complex communities and function as a link between above- and below-ground organisms. Associations between plants and soil-borne microbes commonly occur and have often been found beneficial for plant fitness. Root-associated microbes may trigger physiological changes in the

  12. Preliminary ecological study of plant species of Lokame Natural Forest (Nord Ubangi Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo): A special emphasis on Non-timber Forest Products

    OpenAIRE

    Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua,

    2017-01-01

    A preliminary ecological study with a special emphasis on Non-timber forest products (NTFPs) was conducted between 2014 and 2015 on both anks of Lokame River in Lokame forest. The results showed that the Lokame natural forest has a very rich and diversified in NTFPs. Data collected over a total area of 2 ha identified 20 families and 25 different plant species producing NTFPs and 914 individuals, of which 39% are food, 38% for different uses, 14% for aphrodisiacs and 9% as medicinal. A compar...

  13. Ecological analyses and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kroodsma, R.L.; Craig, R.B.; Hildebrand, S.G.

    1978-01-01

    Progress is reported on the following: assessment of nuclear power plants; ecological analysis of uranium mining, milling, and fuel fabrication; environmental impact statements concerning uranium enrichment facilities; site evaluations for storage of radioactive wastes; ecological analysis of geothermal energy development; enhanced oil recovery; environmental monitoring plan for modular integrated utility systems; and fossil energy environmental project

  14. Terrestrial Ecology Guide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, James W., Ed.; Hall, James A., Ed.

    This collection of study units focuses on the study of the ecology of land habitats. Considered are such topics as map reading, field techniques, forest ecosystem, birds, insects, small mammals, soils, plant ecology, preparation of terrariums, air pollution, photography, and essentials of an environmental studies program. Each unit contains…

  15. Habitats and ecological niches of root-hemiparasitic plants: an assessment based on a large database of vegetation plots

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Těšitel, J.; Fibich, P.; de Bello, Francesco; Chytrý, M.; Lepš, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 87, č. 2 (2015), s. 87-108 ISSN 0032-7786 R&D Projects: GA ČR GB14-36079G Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP505/12/1390 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:67985939 Keywords : Bartsia * beals index * Euphrasia Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour; EH - Ecology, Behaviour (BU-J) Impact factor: 2.711, year: 2015 http://www. sci .muni.cz/botany/chytry/Tesitel_etal2015_Preslia.pdf

  16. Evolution of nutrient uptake reveals a trade-off in the ecological stoichiometry of plant-herbivore interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Branco, P.; Stomp, M.; Egas, M.; Huisman, J.

    2010-01-01

    Nutrient limitation determines the primary production and species composition of many ecosystems. Here we apply an adaptive dynamics approach to investigate evolution of the ecological stoichiometry of primary producers and its implications for plant‐herbivore interactions. The model predicts a

  17. Ecological improvements to hydroelectric power plants under EEG. Guidance to environmental verifiers and water rights authorities; Oekologische Verbesserungsmassnahmen an Wasserkraftanlagen gemaess EEG. Leitfaden fuer Umweltgutachter und Wasserrechtsbehoerden

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meyr, Christoph; Pfeifer, Hansjoerg [EVIT GmbH Ingenieurbuero Unternehmensberatung, Muenchen (Germany); Schnell, Johannes; Hanfland, Sebastian [Landesfischereiverband Bayern e.V., Muenchen (Germany)

    2011-11-15

    The use of hydropower as a renewable form of energy is experiencing a renaissance due to the energy transition in Bavaria. The fishery evaluate not uncritically this development, because hydroelectric plants generally normally represent a considerable intervention in water and therefore in the habitat of the fish. In this case it should be noted that just often not even the minimum requirements of ecology are fulfilled at existing plants according to the Federal Water Act. [German] Die Nutzung der Wasserkraft als regenerative Energieform erlebt aufgrund der Energiewende in Bayern derzeit eine Art Renaissance. Die Fischerei bewertet diese Entwicklung nicht unkritisch, stellen Wasserkraftanlagen in der Regel doch einen erheblichen Eingriff in Gewaesser und somit den Lebensraum der Fische dar. Dabei ist festzustellen, dass gerade an bestehenden Anlagen haeufig nicht einmal die Mindestanforderungen der Oekologie erfuellt werden, wie sie das Wasserhaushaltsgesetz vorschreibt.

  18. ARBRE monitoring - ecology of short rotation coppice. Four year study involving wildlife monitoring of commercial SCR plantations planted on arable land and arable control plots

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cunningham, M.D.; Bishop, J.D.; McKay, H.V.; Sage, R.B.

    2004-07-01

    This report summarises the findings of the UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) funded project monitoring wildlife within and around a number of commercially managed Short Rotation Coppice (SRC) plantations aimed at using the information gathered to assess the ecological impact of SRC plantations on the wildlife in the area. The background to the study is traced, and details are given of the monitoring programme examining the distribution of flora and fauna within the plantations, and the monitoring of birds, plants, insects and butterflies. The greater diversity of wildlife and plants in the SRC plots, the higher densities of birds, and the increasing number of butterfly species are discussed along with the increased mean number of invertebrate orders with subsequent growth of willow coppices, and the habitats at the edges of the plots and at headlands designed for access to machinery within the plots.

  19. Selection of nectar plants for use in ecological engineering to promote biological control of rice pests by the predatory bug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis, (Heteroptera: Miridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Pingyang; Lu, Zhongxian; Heong, Kongluen; Chen, Guihua; Zheng, Xusong; Xu, Hongxing; Yang, Yajun; Nicol, Helen I; Gurr, Geoff M

    2014-01-01

    Ecological engineering for pest management involves the identification of optimal forms of botanical diversity to incorporate into a farming system to suppress pests, by promoting their natural enemies. Whilst this approach has been extensively researched in many temperate crop systems, much less has been done for rice. This paper reports the influence of various plant species on the performance of a key natural enemy of rice planthopper pests, the predatory mirid bug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis. Survival of adult males and females was increased by the presence of flowering Tagetes erecta, Trida procumbens, Emilia sonchifolia (Compositae), and Sesamum indicum (Pedaliaceae) compared with water or nil controls. All flower treatments resulted in increased consumption of brown plant hopper, Nilaparvata lugens, and for female C. lividipennis, S. indicum was the most favorable. A separate study with a wider range of plant species and varying densities of prey eggs showed that S. indicum most strongly promoted predation by C. lividipennis. Reflecting this, S. indicum gave a relatively high rate of prey search and low prey handling time. On this basis, S. indicum was selected for more detailed studies to check if its potential incorporation into the farming system would not inadvertently benefit Cnaphalocrocis medinalis and Marasmia patnalis, serious Lepidoptera pests of rice. Adult longevity and fecundity of both pests was comparable for S. indicum and water treatments and significantly lower than the honey solution treatment. Findings indicate that S. indicumis well suited for use as an ecological engineering plant in the margins of rice crops. Sesame indicum can be a valuable crop as well as providing benefits to C. lividipennis whilst denying benefit to key pests.

  20. Ecological situation at the coke plant of the Nizhnii Tagil Integrated Iron and Steel Works (according to data from an expert commission of Gosstroi USSR)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Filippov, B.S.

    1990-01-01

    A main source of pollution is the Nizhnii Tagil Integrated Iron and Steel Works (NTMK), whose share in the total emissions of harmful substances is very significant. Thus, in 1987 the mean annual dust content in the atmosphere of the city surpassed the maximum admissible concentrations 1.3 times, phenol 2 times, ammonia 2.5 times, benzopyrene 6 times. In 1988 an even higher content of harmful substances was noted. Reconstruction of the coke plant now underway has been called upon to ensure a significant improvement in the ecological conditions together with an overall increase in its technical level. Restoration of the existing capacity of the coke batteries at domestic coke plants is being accomplished according to two variants: first - relining of the batteries with retention of the existing dimensions or with a slight very limited increase, with modernization of the designs of the ovens and chemical departments, and also machines and equipment (technical refitting); second - withdrawal from operation of the existing batteries and construction of new higher capacity coke batteries in the plant area (reconstruction). From the standpoint of ecology and economy of capital investment it would be more expedient to restore capacity at NTMK according to the first variant. However, restoration here is being carried out according to the second variant with construction of coke batteries 9 and 10 in a new area with dry coke quenching. There are plans to decommission batteries 1-4. An analysis is given of the sources of pollution from the coke plant and measures are defined to reduce pollutants

  1. Selection of nectar plants for use in ecological engineering to promote biological control of rice pests by the predatory bug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis, (Heteroptera: Miridae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pingyang Zhu

    Full Text Available Ecological engineering for pest management involves the identification of optimal forms of botanical diversity to incorporate into a farming system to suppress pests, by promoting their natural enemies. Whilst this approach has been extensively researched in many temperate crop systems, much less has been done for rice. This paper reports the influence of various plant species on the performance of a key natural enemy of rice planthopper pests, the predatory mirid bug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis. Survival of adult males and females was increased by the presence of flowering Tagetes erecta, Trida procumbens, Emilia sonchifolia (Compositae, and Sesamum indicum (Pedaliaceae compared with water or nil controls. All flower treatments resulted in increased consumption of brown plant hopper, Nilaparvata lugens, and for female C. lividipennis, S. indicum was the most favorable. A separate study with a wider range of plant species and varying densities of prey eggs showed that S. indicum most strongly promoted predation by C. lividipennis. Reflecting this, S. indicum gave a relatively high rate of prey search and low prey handling time. On this basis, S. indicum was selected for more detailed studies to check if its potential incorporation into the farming system would not inadvertently benefit Cnaphalocrocis medinalis and Marasmia patnalis, serious Lepidoptera pests of rice. Adult longevity and fecundity of both pests was comparable for S. indicum and water treatments and significantly lower than the honey solution treatment. Findings indicate that S. indicumis well suited for use as an ecological engineering plant in the margins of rice crops. Sesame indicum can be a valuable crop as well as providing benefits to C. lividipennis whilst denying benefit to key pests.

  2. Molecular ecology of Listeria monocytogenes and other Listeria species in small and very small ready-to-eat meat processing plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Shanna K; Roof, Sherry; Boyle, Elizabeth A; Burson, Dennis; Thippareddi, Harshavardhan; Geornaras, Ifigenia; Sofos, John N; Wiedmann, Martin; Nightingale, Kendra

    2011-01-01

    A longitudinal study was conducted to track Listeria contamination patterns in ready-to-eat meats from six small or very small meat processing plants located in three states over 1 year. A total of 688 environmental sponge samples were collected from nonfood contact surfaces during bimonthly visits to each plant. Overall, L. monocytogenes was isolated from 42 (6.1%) environmental samples, and its prevalence ranged from 1.7 to 10.8% across different plants. Listeria spp., other than L. monocytogenes, were isolated from 9.5% of samples overall, with the prevalence ranging from 1.5 to 18.3% across different plants. The prevalence of L. monocytogenes correlated well with that of other Listeria spp. for some but not all plants. One L. monocytogenes isolate representing each positive sample was characterized by molecular serotyping, EcoRI ribotyping, and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis typing. Seven sample sites tested positive for L. monocytogenes on more than one occasion, and the same ribotype was detected more than once at five of these sites. Partial sigB sequencing was used to speciate other Listeria spp. isolates and assign an allelic type to each isolate. Other Listeria spp. were isolated more than once from 14 sample sites, and the same sigB allelic type was recovered at least twice from seven of these sites. One plant was colonized by an atypical hemolytic L. innocua strain. Our findings indicate that small and very small meat processing plants that produce ready-to-eat meat products are characterized by a varied prevalence of Listeria, inconsistent correlation between contamination by L. monocytogenes and other Listeria spp., and a unique Listeria molecular ecology.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regino Zamora

    2002-03-01

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

  4. Disposal Situation of Sewage Sludge from Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) and Assessment of the Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals for Its Land Use in Shanxi, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Baoling; Zhang, Wuping; Zheng, Haixia; Wu, Chunyan; Zhang, Qiang; Bu, Yushan

    2017-07-21

    Land use of sewage sludge is the primary disposal method in Shanxi, accounting for 42.66% of all. To determine the ecological risk of heavy metals in sewage sludge, contents of seven heavy metals in sewage sludge from 9 municipal waste water treatment plants (WWTPs) that had the highest application for land use were determined. The order of the measured concentrations was: Zn > Cr > Cu > Ni > Pb > As > Cd, and all heavy metals contents were within the threshold limit values of the Chinese Control Standards for Pollutants in Sludge from Agriculture Use (GB4284-84). Four indices were used to assess the pollution and the ecological risk of heavy metals. By the mean values of the geoaccumulation index (I geo ), heavy metals were ranked in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > As > Cr > Ni > Pb. The values showed that the pollution of Zn in station 3 and Cd in station 1, 2, 3, 4, 8 and 9 were heavily; Cu in station 8 and 9, Zn in station 1, 2, 4, 8 and 9 and Cd in station 5 and 7 were moderately to heavily, and the accumulation of other heavy metals were not significant. The single-factor pollution index (PI) suggested that none of the stations had heavy metals contamination, except for Cu in station 9, Zn in station 3 and 8, and Cd in station 1 and 9, which were at a moderate level. According to the results of the Nemerow's synthetic pollution index (PN), sewage sludge from all stations was safe for land use with respect to heavy metals contamination, except for stations 3, 8 and 9, which were at the warning line. The monomial potential ecological risk coefficient (Eri) revealed that heavy metals ecological risks in most stations were low. However, station 9 had a moderate risk for Cu; station 6 had a moderate risk, stations 5 and 7 had high risk, other stations had very high risk for Cd. According to the results of the potential ecological risk index (RI), station 1, 8 and 9 had high risk; station 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7 had a moderate risk, and station 6 had a low risk. The

  5. Disposal Situation of Sewage Sludge from Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs and Assessment of the Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals for Its Land Use in Shanxi, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baoling Duan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Land use of sewage sludge is the primary disposal method in Shanxi, accounting for 42.66% of all. To determine the ecological risk of heavy metals in sewage sludge, contents of seven heavy metals in sewage sludge from 9 municipal waste water treatment plants (WWTPs that had the highest application for land use were determined. The order of the measured concentrations was: Zn > Cr > Cu > Ni > Pb > As > Cd, and all heavy metals contents were within the threshold limit values of the Chinese Control Standards for Pollutants in Sludge from Agriculture Use (GB4284-84. Four indices were used to assess the pollution and the ecological risk of heavy metals. By the mean values of the geoaccumulation index (Igeo, heavy metals were ranked in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > As > Cr > Ni > Pb. The values showed that the pollution of Zn in station 3 and Cd in station 1, 2, 3, 4, 8 and 9 were heavily; Cu in station 8 and 9, Zn in station 1, 2, 4, 8 and 9 and Cd in station 5 and 7 were moderately to heavily, and the accumulation of other heavy metals were not significant. The single-factor pollution index (PI suggested that none of the stations had heavy metals contamination, except for Cu in station 9, Zn in station 3 and 8, and Cd in station 1 and 9, which were at a moderate level. According to the results of the Nemerow’s synthetic pollution index (PN, sewage sludge from all stations was safe for land use with respect to heavy metals contamination, except for stations 3, 8 and 9, which were at the warning line. The monomial potential ecological risk coefficient (Eri revealed that heavy metals ecological risks in most stations were low. However, station 9 had a moderate risk for Cu; station 6 had a moderate risk, stations 5 and 7 had high risk, other stations had very high risk for Cd. According to the results of the potential ecological risk index (RI, station 1, 8 and 9 had high risk; station 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7 had a moderate risk, and station 6 had a

  6. Report on the remedial investigation of Bear Creek Valley at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Volume 6: Appendix G -- Baseline ecological risk assessment report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-09-01

    This Remedial Investigation (RI) Report characterizes the nature and extent of contamination, evaluates the fate and transport of contaminants, and assesses risk to human health and the environment resulting from waste disposal and other US Department of Energy (DOE) operations in Bear Creek Valley (BCV). BCV, which is located within the DOE Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) encompasses multiple waste units containing hazardous and radioactive wastes arising from operations at the adjacent Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant. The primary waste units discussed in this RI Report are the S-3 Site, Oil Landfarm (OLF), Boneyard/Burnyard (BYBY), Sanitary Landfill 1 (SL 1), and Bear Creek Burial Grounds (BCBG). These waste units, plus the contaminated media resulting from environmental transport of the wastes from these units, are the subject of this RI. This BCV RI Report represents the first major step in the decision-making process for the BCV watershed. The RI results, in concert with the follow-on FS will form the basis for the Proposed Plan and Record of Decision for all BCV sites. This comprehensive decision document process will meet the objectives of the watershed approach for BCV. Appendix G contains ecological risks for fish, benthic invertebrates, soil invertebrates, plants, small mammals, deer, and predator/scavengers (hawks and fox). This risk assessment identified significant ecological risks from chemicals in water, sediment, soil, and shallow ground water. Metals and PCBs are the primary contaminants of concern.

  7. Chemical ecology of fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spiteller, Peter

    2015-07-01

    Fungi are widespread in nature and have conquered nearly every ecological niche. Fungi occur not only in terrestrial but also in freshwater and marine environments. Moreover, fungi are known as a rich source of secondary metabolites. Despite these facts, the ecological role of many of these metabolites is still unknown and the chemical ecology of fungi has not been investigated systematically so far. This review intends to present examples of the various chemical interactions of fungi with other fungi, plants, bacteria and animals and to give an overview of the current knowledge of fungal chemical ecology.

  8. Studies on the Cs 137-transfer in the foodchain soil - plant - milk under the ecological conditions in a given environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heine, K.; Wiechen, A.

    1979-01-01

    Transfer factors of Cs 137 were determined by low-levels measurements of soil, plants and milk in the surroundings of the site of the planned nuclear reprocessing plant near Gorleben. The evaluated transfer factors for the transition soil - plant range between 0.018 and 0.115 (pCi/kg plant wet weight: pCi/kg soil dry weight). Higher values were generally found for sandy soils than for the loamy soils of the lowland near the river Elbe. Because of a possible direct contamination of the plants by fall out or wash out the determined values can be considered as the higher limits of the transfer factors. The determined Cs 137-transfer factors of the transition plant - milk range between 0.0023 and 0.057 (pCi/l: pCi/daily intake). The highest transfer factors are determined for farms the pastures of which have sandy soils. More than 2/3 of all transfer factors determined for the transition plant - milk are lower than the value 0.012 (pCi/l: pCi/daily intake) published by the Strahlenschutzkommission in 1977. As for two farms the mean values of the factors during the outdoor season are higher than this value, it probably has to be raised in the evaluation of the radiation exposure for this part of the surroundings of the nuclear plant. (orig./MG) 891 MG/orig. 892 MB [de

  9. The Significance of Wild Plants in the Evolutionary Ecology of Three Major Viruses Infecting Cultivated Sweetpotato in Uganda

    OpenAIRE

    Tugume Kajungu, Arthur

    2010-01-01

    The studies presented in this thesis contribute to the understanding of evolutionary ecology of three major viruses threatening cultivated sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas Lam) in East Africa: Sweet potato feathery mottle virus (SPFMV; genus Potyvirus; Potyviridae), Sweet potato chlorotic stunt virus (SPCSV; genus Crinivirus; Closteroviridae) and Sweet potato mild mottle virus (SPMMV; genus Ipomovirus; Potyviridae). The viruses were serologically detected and the positive results confirmed b...

  10. Trait-based plant ecology: moving towards a unifying species coexistence theory : Features of the Special Section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escudero, Adrián; Valladares, Fernando

    2016-04-01

    Functional traits are the center of recent attempts to unify key ecological theories on species coexistence and assembling in populations and communities. While the plethora of studies on the role of functional traits to explain patterns and dynamics of communities has rendered a complex picture due to the idiosyncrasies of each study system and approach, there is increasing evidence on their actual relevance when aspects such as different spatial scales, intraspecific variability and demography are considered.

  11. Ecological traits of the algae-bearing Tetrahymena utriculariae (Ciliophora) from traps of the aquatic carnivorous plant Utricularia reflexa

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šimek, Karel; Pitsch, G.; Salcher, Michaela M.; Sirová, Dagmara; Shabarova, Tatiana; Adamec, Lubomír; Posch, T.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 64, č. 3 (2017), s. 336-348 ISSN 1066-5234 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA13-00243S Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic Utricularia * bacterial turnover rate * ciliate bacterivory and mixotrophy * microbial interactions Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology OBOR OECD: Ecology; Microbiology (BU-J) Impact factor: 2.692, year: 2016

  12. Ecological study of the effects of nuclear power plants on benthic macroplant microcosms in subtropical and tropical estuaries. Annual progress report, 1974--1975

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thorhaug, A.

    1975-05-01

    Progress is reported on the following research projects: the dynamic ecology of Thalassia and studies of the Thalassia community; basic ecology of Thalassia growth and reproduction; red macroalgal ecology; green macroalgal ecology; transplantation of Thalassia; succession in a previously damaged Thalassia community at Turkey Point; and thermal ecology of the Thalassia community of Card Sound and Turkey Point. (U.S.)

  13. Experimental assemblage of novel plant-herbivore interactions: ecological host shifts after 40 million years of isolation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Robledo, Carlos; Horvitz, Carol C; Kress, W John; Carvajal-Acosta, A Nalleli; Erwin, Terry L; Staines, Charles L

    2017-11-01

    Geographic isolation is the first step in insect herbivore diet specialization. Such specialization is postulated to increase insect fitness, but may simultaneously reduce insect ability to colonize novel hosts. During the Paleocene-Eocene, plants from the order Zingiberales became isolated either in the Paleotropics or in the Neotropics. During the Cretaceous, rolled-leaf beetles diversified in the Neotropics concurrently with Neotropical Zingiberales. Using a community of Costa Rican rolled-leaf beetles and their Zingiberales host plants as study system, we explored if previous geographic isolation precludes insects to expand their diets to exotic hosts. We recorded interactions between rolled-leaf beetles and native Zingiberales by combining DNA barcodes and field records for 7450 beetles feeding on 3202 host plants. To determine phylogenetic patterns of diet expansions, we set 20 field plots including five exotic Zingiberales, recording beetles feeding on these exotic hosts. In the laboratory, using both native and exotic host plants, we reared a subset of insect species that had expanded their diets to the exotic plants. The original plant-herbivore community comprised 24 beetle species feeding on 35 native hosts, representing 103 plant-herbivore interactions. After exotic host plant introduction, 20% of the beetle species expanded their diets to exotic Zingiberales. Insects only established on exotic hosts that belong to the same plant family as their native hosts. Laboratory experiments show that beetles are able to complete development on these novel hosts. In conclusion, rolled-leaf beetles are pre-adapted to expand their diets to novel host plants even after millions of years of geographic isolation.

  14. Ecological responses to UV radiation: interactions between the biological effects of UV on plants and on associated organisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Nigel D; Moore, Jason P; McPherson, Martin; Lambourne, Cathryn; Croft, Patricia; Heaton, Joanna C; Wargent, Jason J

    2012-08-01

    Solar ultraviolet (UV)-B radiation (280-315 nm) has a wide range of effects on terrestrial ecosystems, yet our understanding of how UV-B influences the complex interactions of plants with pest, pathogen and related microorganisms remains limited. Here, we report the results of a series of experiments in Lactuca sativa which aimed to characterize not only key plant responses to UV radiation in a field environment but also consequential effects for plant interactions with a sap-feeding insect, two model plant pathogens and phylloplane microorganism populations. Three spectrally modifying filters with contrasting UV transmissions were used to filter ambient sunlight, and when compared with our UV-inclusive filter, L. sativa plants grown in a zero UV-B environment showed significantly increased shoot fresh weight, reduced foliar pigment concentrations and suppressed population growth of green peach aphid (Myzus persicae). Plants grown under a filter which allowed partial transmission of UV-A radiation and negligible UV-B transmission showed increased density of leaf surface phylloplane microbes compared with the UV-inclusive treatment. Effects of UV treatment on the severity of two plant pathogens, Bremia lactucae and Botrytis cinerea, were complex as both the UV-inclusive and zero UV-B filters reduced the severity of pathogen persistence. These results are discussed with reference to known spectral responses of plants, insects and microorganisms, and contrasted with established fundamental responses of plants and other organisms to solar UV radiation, with particular emphasis on the need for future integration between different experimental approaches when investigating the effects of solar UV radiation. Copyright © Physiologia Plantarum 2011.

  15. Plant growth and mineral recycle trade-offs in different scenarios for a CELSS. [Closed Ecological Life Support System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballou, E. V.; Wydeven, T.; Spitze, L. A.

    1982-01-01

    Data for hydroponic plant growth in a manned system test is combined with nutritional recommendations to suport trade-off calculations for closed and partially closed life support system scenarios. Published data are used as guidelines for the masses of mineral nutrients needed for higher plant production. The results of calculations based on various scenarios are presented for various combinations of plant growth chamber utilization and fraction of mineral recycle. Estimates are made of the masses of material needed to meet human nutritional requirements in the various scenarios. It appears that food production from a plant growth chamber with mineral recycle is favorable to reduction of the total launch weight in missions exceeding 3 years.

  16. A comparative study on medicinal plants used in Akha's traditional medicine in China and Thailand, cultural coherence or ecological divergence?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Inta, A.; Shengji, P.; Balslev, Henrik

    2008-01-01

    Aim of the study : The survey aims to study the effect of geographic separation of ethnic groups on local knowledge of medicinal plants used by Akha people in Thailand and China, who were separated 100-120 years ago, to see how different the two geographically distinct but culturally similar groups...... were in this respect. Materials and methods : Interviewing 10 villagers in each of five Akha villages, three in Thailand and two in China, about which plants they used and how they used them. Results : A total of 95 medicinal plants registered in the five villages only 16 were shared between China......, but that when using these new species they have maintained other traditions relating to medicinal plants....

  17. Ecological occurrence of Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus and nitrogen-fixing Acetobacteraceae members: their possible role in plant growth promotion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saravanan, V S; Madhaiyan, M; Osborne, Jabez; Thangaraju, M; Sa, T M

    2008-01-01

    Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus has a long-standing history of bacterial-plant interrelationship as a symbiotic endophyte capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen. In low nitrogen fertilized sugarcane fields it plays a significant role and its occurrence was realised in most of the sugarcane growing countries. In this mini review, the association of G. diazotrophicus with sugarcane, other crop plants and with various hosts is discussed. The factors affecting survival in the rhizosphere and the putative soil mode of transmission are emphasized. In addition, other N(2)-fixing Acetobacteraceae members, including Gluconacetobacter azotocaptans, Gluconacetobacter johannae and Swaminathania salitolerans, occurring in coffee, corn and rice plants are also covered. Lastly, the plant-growth-promoting traits identified in this group of bacteria, including N(2) fixation, phytohormone synthesis, P and Zn solubilization and biocontrol, are analysed.

  18. A predictive framework and review of the ecological impacts of exotic plant invasions on reptiles and amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Leigh J; Murray, Brad R

    2011-05-01

    The invasive spread of exotic plants in native vegetation can pose serious threats to native faunal assemblages. This is of particular concern for reptiles and amphibians because they form a significant component of the world's vertebrate fauna, play a pivotal role in ecosystem functioning and are often neglected in biodiversity research. A framework to predict how exotic plant invasion will affect reptile and amphibian assemblages is imperative for conservation, management and the identification of research priorities. Here, we present a new predictive framework that integrates three mechanistic models. These models are based on exotic plant invasion altering: (1) habitat structure; (2) herbivory and predator-prey interactions; (3) the reproductive success of reptile and amphibian species and assemblages. We present a series of testable predictions from these models that arise from the interplay over time among three exotic plant traits (growth form, area of coverage, taxonomic distinctiveness) and six traits of reptiles and amphibians (body size, lifespan, home range size, habitat specialisation, diet, reproductive strategy). A literature review provided robust empirical evidence of exotic plant impacts on reptiles and amphibians from each of the three model mechanisms. Evidence relating to the role of body size and diet was less clear-cut, indicating the need for further research. The literature provided limited empirical support for many of the other model predictions. This was not, however, because findings contradicted our model predictions but because research in this area is sparse. In particular, the small number of studies specifically examining the effects of exotic plants on amphibians highlights the pressing need for quantitative research in this area. There is enormous scope for detailed empirical investigation of interactions between exotic plants and reptile and amphibian species and assemblages. The framework presented here and further testing of

  19. Ecological studies of plants for the control of environmental pollution. IV. Growth of various plant species as influenced by soil applied cadmium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cha, J.W.; Kim, B.W.

    1975-03-01

    The relations of the growth response of plants, i.e. 4 species of crops, 12 species of roadside trees and 5 species of horticultural plants to cadmium (Cd) were studied in pot cultures. Growth in dry weight of corn, soybeans, barley, and wheat plants was decreased with an increase in Cd concentration. Damage to corn plants caused by Cd treatment was more or less recovered when it was grown in soil with calcium, but the other three crops did not recover. Although crop plants used here absorbed a small amount of Cd through the roots, the Cd content in the shoots was directly proportionate to the concentration of Cd added to the soil. Additions of calcium and sulfur to soil were sufficient to change the soil pH. The chlorosis on leaves caused by Cd treatment was observed in 2 species such as Euonymus japonica and Rhododendron yedoense out of 5 species of the horticultural plants, especially at 50 ppm of Cd. Euonymus japonica had symptoms of chlorosis and defoliation, and at higher concentrations the symptoms were more severe. At 200 ppm of Cd little damage was observed in Pinus koraiensis and Ginkgo biloba, but severe chlorosis was observed in Robinia pseudoacacia and Sabina chinensis, Buxus koreana, Abies holophylla and Platanus orientalis. Nevertheless, those plants that had serious damage at 200 ppm of Cd showed weakened symptoms by adding calcium to the soil. There were many Cd tolerant species out of the plants used in this experiment, such as Crassula falcata, Chrysanthemum morifolium, Hibiscus syriacus, Ligustrum ovalifolium, Liriodendron tulipeferia, and Lespedeza crytobotrys.

  20. Economical and ecological benchmarking of biogas plant configurations for flexible power generation in future power supply systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hahn, Henning

    2016-01-01

    With the share of intermittent renewable energies within the electricity system rising, balancing services from dispatchable power plants are of increasing importance. This study comparatively assesses the environmental and economic performance of biogas plant configurations, supplying biogas on demand for flexible power generation. A cost analysis of five configurations based on biogas storing and flexible biogas production concepts has been carried out. Results show that additional flexibility costs for a biogas supply of 8 hours per day range between 2 Euro to 11 Euro MWh -1 and for a 72 hour period without biogas demand from 9 Euro to 19 Euro MWh -1 . While biogas storage concepts were identified as favorable short-term supply configurations, flexible biogas production concepts profit from reduced storage requirements at plants with large biogas production capacities or for longer periods without biogas demand [1, 2]. Flexible biogas plant configurations indicate an increased energy demand to operate the operational enhancements compared to conventional biogas plants supplying biogas for baseload power generation. However, findings show that in contrast to an alternative supply of power generators with natural gas, biogas supplied on demand by adapted biogas plant configurations saves greenhouse gas emissions by 54 to 65 g CO 2-eq MJ -1 and primary energy by about 1.17 MJ MJ -1 . In this regard, configurations with flexible biogas production profit from reduced biogas storage requirements and achieve higher savings compared to configurations with continuous biogas production [1, 3].

  1. A framework for identifying plant species to be used as 'ecological engineers' for fixing soil on unstable slopes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghestem, Murielle; Cao, Kunfang; Ma, Wenzhang; Rowe, Nick; Leclerc, Raphaëlle; Gadenne, Clément; Stokes, Alexia

    2014-01-01

    Major reforestation programs have been initiated on hillsides prone to erosion and landslides in China, but no framework exists to guide managers in the choice of plant species. We developed such a framework based on the suitability of given plant traits for fixing soil on steep slopes in western Yunnan, China. We examined the utility of 55 native and exotic species with regard to the services they provided. We then chose nine species differing in life form. Plant root system architecture, root mechanical and physiological traits were then measured at two adjacent field sites. One site was highly unstable, with severe soil slippage and erosion. The second site had been replanted 8 years previously and appeared to be physically stable. How root traits differed between sites, season, depth in soil and distance from the plant stem were determined. Root system morphology was analysed by considering architectural traits (root angle, depth, diameter and volume) both up- and downslope. Significant differences between all factors were found, depending on species. We estimated the most useful architectural and mechanical traits for physically fixing soil in place. We then combined these results with those concerning root physiological traits, which were used as a proxy for root metabolic activity. Scores were assigned to each species based on traits. No one species possessed a suite of highly desirable traits, therefore mixtures of species should be used on vulnerable slopes. We also propose a conceptual model describing how to position plants on an unstable site, based on root system traits.

  2. A framework for identifying plant species to be used as 'ecological engineers' for fixing soil on unstable slopes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murielle Ghestem

    Full Text Available Major reforestation programs have been initiated on hillsides prone to erosion and landslides in China, but no framework exists to guide managers in the choice of plant species. We developed such a framework based on the suitability of given plant traits for fixing soil on steep slopes in western Yunnan, China. We examined the utility of 55 native and exotic species with regard to the services they provided. We then chose nine species differing in life form. Plant root system architecture, root mechanical and physiological traits were then measured at two adjacent field sites. One site was highly unstable, with severe soil slippage and erosion. The second site had been replanted 8 years previously and appeared to be physically stable. How root traits differed between sites, season, depth in soil and distance from the plant stem were determined. Root system morphology was analysed by considering architectural traits (root angle, depth, diameter and volume both up- and downslope. Significant differences between all factors were found, depending on species. We estimated the most useful architectural and mechanical traits for physically fixing soil in place. We then combined these results with those concerning root physiological traits, which were used as a proxy for root metabolic activity. Scores were assigned to each species based on traits. No one species possessed a suite of highly desirable traits, therefore mixtures of species should be used on vulnerable slopes. We also propose a conceptual model describing how to position plants on an unstable site, based on root system traits.

  3. A systemic ecological risk assessment based on spatial distribution and source apportionment in the abandoned lead acid battery plant zone, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yimei; Li, Shuai; Chen, Zhuang; Wang, Fei; Chen, Jie; Wang, Liqun

    2018-07-15

    In China, potential heavy metal hazard around abandoned lead-acid battery plant (ALBP) area has been a great concern but without detailed report. The distribution and sources of heavy metals in soils and so by risk assessment associated with ALBP are conducted in this contribution, based on geographies and statistics. Pb and Zn are quantitively identified to be still emitted from ALBP soil, and Cd as well As are from agricultural activity. We investigate vertical metal distribution, and fortunately find that metals migrate within limit of 40 cm below topsoil, which is higher than groundwater table. The visualized stable depths are Zn 40 cm, Pb, As 20 cm, and Cd 40 cm. The mapped pollution load index (PLI) suggests a high pollution level exists in ALBP soil. The estimation of potential ecological risk index (PERI) indicates a light ecological risk in studied area, while As and Cd mainly from agricultural activity possess 54% of total E ri . Health risk index (THI) is 0.178 for children, indicating non-cancer risks may be ignored in observed area. Though calculated risk is temporarily affordable, soil remediation and reduction of agricultural chemical reagents are recommended for preventing potential cumulative risk from further bioconcentration of heavy metals. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Physical dosimetry and biological indicators of carcinogenic risk in a cohort of persons exposed to unhealthy ecological factors following the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant accident.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orel, V E; Tereschenki, V M; Czyatkovskaya, N N; Mazepa, M G; Buzunov, V A

    1998-01-01

    The April 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant accident caused ecological changes in the Ovruch State forests in the Zhytomir oblast in the Ukraine. The highest radioactivity existed in moss, followed by the pine-forest substrate and soil. During 1984-1985, the pine needles were primarily surface contaminated, whereas during 1986-1988, they were contaminated secondarily. Radioactivity in air was highest (1.07+/-0.185 Bq/l) during dry and sunny weather and when trees were felled; the lowest levels (0.196+/-0.044 Bq/l) occurred during periods of stable snow coverage. Between 1987 and 1989 (i.e., after the Chernobyl accident), the caesium levels in forestry employees exceeded by 13.9-fold the average levels found in the Ukrainian Polessje population. Ovruch forest guards and woodcutters had the highest effective equivalent doses of radiation, and they therefore exhibited the highest carcinogenic risk.

  5. Ecology of the African Maize Stalk Borer, Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae with Special Reference to Insect-Plant Interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul-André Calatayud

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae is an important pest of maize and sorghum in sub-Saharan Africa. One century after its first description by Fuller in 1901, inaccurate information based on earlier reports are still propagated on its distribution (e.g., absent from the lower altitudes in East Africa and host plant range (e.g., feeding on a large range of wild grass species. This review provides updated information on the biology, distribution and genetics of B. fusca with emphasis on insect-plant interactions. Related to this, new avenues of stem borer management are proposed.

  6. Simulation and experimental studies of operators' decision styles and crew composition while using an ecological and traditional user interface for the control room of a nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meshkati, N.; Buller, B.J.; Azadeh, M.A.

    1994-01-01

    A traditional human factors (i.e., microergonomic) approach to complex human-machine systems is only concerned with improving the workstation (user interface) design. This approach, by ignoring the importance of the integration of the user interface with job and organizational design, results in systems which lead, at best, only to sub-optimization and are therefore inherently error- and failure-prone. Such systems, when eventually faced with the concentration of certain fault events, will suffer from this open-quotes resident pathogenclose quotes and, as such, are doomed to failure. Also, when complex technological systems, such as nuclear power plants, move from routine to non-routine (normal to emergency) operation, the controlling operators need to dynamically match the system's new requirements. This mandates integrated and harmonious changes in information presentation (display), changes in (job) performance requirements in part because of operators' inevitable involuntary transition to different levels of cognitive control, and reconfigurations of the operators' team (organizational) structure and communication. It is also demonstrated that the skill, rule, and knowledge (SRK) model, developed by Rasmussen, is a high-potential and powerful framework that could be utilized for the proposed integration purpose. The objective of this research was threefold: (1) using the SRK model, to develop an integrated information processing conceptual framework (for integration of workstation, job, and team design); (2) to evaluate the user interface component of this framework -- the ecological display; and (3) to analyze the effect of operators' individual information processing behavior and decision styles on handling plant disturbances, on their performance and preference for traditional and ecological user interfaces

  7. Occurrence and in-stream attenuation of wastewater-derived pharmaceuticals in Iberian rivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acuña, Vicenç; von Schiller, Daniel; García-Galán, Maria Jesús; Rodríguez-Mozaz, Sara; Corominas, Lluís; Petrovic, Mira; Poch, Manel; Barceló, Damià; Sabater, Sergi

    2015-01-15

    A multitude of pharmaceuticals enter surface waters via discharges of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), and many raise environmental and health concerns. Chemical fate models predict their concentrations using estimates of mass loading, dilution and in-stream attenuation. However, current comprehension of the attenuation rates remains a limiting factor for predictive models. We assessed in-stream attenuation of 75 pharmaceuticals in 4 river segments, aiming to characterize in-stream attenuation variability among different pharmaceutical compounds, as well as among river segments differing in environmental conditions. Our study revealed that in-stream attenuation was highly variable among pharmaceuticals and river segments and that none of the considered pharmaceutical physicochemical and molecular properties proved to be relevant in determining the mean attenuation rates. Instead, the octanol-water partition coefficient (Kow) influenced the variability of rates among river segments, likely due to its effect on sorption to sediments and suspended particles, and therefore influencing the balance between the different attenuation mechanisms (biotransformation, photolysis, sorption, and volatilization). The magnitude of the measured attenuation rates urges scientists to consider them as important as dilution when aiming to predict concentrations in freshwater ecosystems. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Resource synergy in stream periphyton communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hill, Walter [University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; Fanta, S.E. [University of Illinois; Roberts, Brian J [ORNL; Francoeur, Steven N. [Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, MI

    2011-03-01

    1. Light and nutrients play pivotal roles in determining the growth of autotrophs, yet the potential for synergistic interactions between the two resources in algal communities is poorly understood, especially in stream ecosystems. In this study, light and phosphorus were manipulated in large experimental streams to examine resource colimitation and synergy in stream periphyton. 2. Whole-stream metabolism was simultaneously limited by light and phosphorus. Increasing the supply of either light or phosphorus resulted in significant increases in primary production and the transformation of the streams from heterotrophy to autotrophy. 3. Resource-driven changes in periphyton community structure occurred in concert with changes in production. Algal assemblages in highly shaded streams were composed primarily of small diatoms such as Achnanthidium minutissima, whereas larger diatoms such as Melosira varians predominated at higher irradiances. Phosphorus enrichment had relatively little effect on assemblage structure, but it did substantially diminish the abundance of Meridion circulare, a diatom whose mucilaginous colonies were conspicuously abundant in phosphorus-poor, high-light streams. Bacterial biomass declined relative to algal biomass with increases in primary productivity, regardless of whether the increases were caused by light or phosphorus. 4. Synergistic effects on primary production appeared to occur because the availability of one resource facilitated the utilization of the other. Light increased the abundance of large diatoms, which are known to convert high concentrations of nutrients into primary production more effectively than smaller taxa. Phosphorus enrichment led to the replacement of Meridion circulare by non-mucilaginous taxa in phosphorus-enriched streams, and we hypothesize that this change enabled more efficient use of light in photosynthesis. Higher ratios of chlorophyll a : biomass in phosphorus-enriched streams may have also led to more

  9. Ecological relevance of strigolactones in nutrient uptake and other abiotic stresses, and in plant-microbe interactions below ground

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Andreo Jimenez, B.; Ruyter-Spira, C.P.; Bouwmeester, H.J.; Lopez-Raez, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Plants are exposed to ever changing and often unfavourable environmental conditions, which cause both abiotic and biotic stresses. They have evolved sophisticated mechanisms to flexibly adapt themselves to these stress conditions. To achieve such adaptation, they need to control and

  10. Gas exchange at whole plant level shows that a less conservative water use is linked to a higher performance in three ecologically distinct pine species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar-Tortosa, D.; Castro, J.; Rubio de Casas, R.; Viñegla, B.; Sánchez-Cañete, E. P.; Villar-Salvador, P.

    2018-04-01

    Increasing temperatures and decreasing precipitation in large areas of the planet as a consequence of global warming will affect plant growth and survival. However, the impact of climatic conditions will differ across species depending on their stomatal response to increasing aridity, as this will ultimately affect the balance between carbon assimilation and water loss. In this study, we monitored gas exchange, growth and survival in saplings of three widely distributed European pine species (Pinus halepensis, P. nigra and P. sylvestris) with contrasting distribution and ecological requirements in order to ascertain the relationship between stomatal control and plant performance. The experiment was conducted in a common garden environment resembling rainfall and temperature conditions that two of the three species are expected to encounter in the near future. In addition, gas exchange was monitored both at the leaf and at the whole-plant level using a transient-state closed chamber, which allowed us to model the response of the whole plant to increased air evaporative demand (AED). P. sylvestris was the species with lowest survival and performance. By contrast, P. halepensis showed no mortality, much higher growth (two orders of magnitude), carbon assimilation (ca. 14 fold higher) and stomatal conductance and water transpiration (ca. 4 fold higher) than the other two species. As a consequence, P. halepensis exhibited higher values of water-use efficiency than the rest of the species even at the highest values of AED. Overall, the results strongly support that the weaker stomatal control of P. halepensis, which is linked to lower stem water potential, enabled this species to maximize carbon uptake under drought stress and ultimately outperform the more water conservative P. nigra and P. sylvestris. These results suggest that under a hotter drought scenario P. nigra and P. sylvestris would very likely suffer increased mortality, whereas P. halepensis could maintain

  11. Spatial simulation of smallmouth bass in streams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jager, H.I.; Schmoyer, D.D.; Sale, M.J.; Van Winkle, W.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Sabo, M.J.

    1993-01-01

    The hydropower industry and its regulators are hampered by the inability to predict the relationship between alternative flow regimes and fish population response. We have developed a spatially explicit, individual-based model of populations of small-mouth bass in streams as part of the Compensatory Mechanisms in Fish Populations Program (see Sale and Otto 1991). In the model, the profitability of alternative stream locations varies in response to habitat depth and velocity through changes in the frequency of prey encounters and the metabolic costs experienced by fish. We conducted an evaluation of our hydraulic simulation at the scale of individual stream cells. The potential error in predictions for individual cell velocities suggests that larger-scale model predictions for the representative reach are most appropriate. At this scale, the model appears to produce realistic patterns in the growth and dispersal of young-of-year small-mouth bass. This verification step allows us to proceed with greater confidence in evaluating the original question of how small-mouth bass populations respond to alternative flow regimes

  12. Ethnobotany and ecological perspectives on the management and use of plant species for a traditional fishing trap, southern coast of São Paulo, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Flavia C; Hanazaki, Natalia

    2011-07-01

    The cerco-fixo is an artisanal fishing trap widely used by traditional communities in the estuarine region of the southern coast of the state of São Paulo, Brazil. The primary goal of the study was to investigate, through ethnobotanical and ecological approaches, the use of plant species by traditional fishermen to build the cerco-fixo at Cardoso Island State Park and Cananéia Island. Ethnobotanical data were collected through interviews, direct observation, plant collection and identification, and document analysis. An ecological evaluation was also done comparing five 20 × 20 m plots in a managed area to five 20 × 20 m plots in an unmanaged area, both within arboreal sandy soil vegetation called restinga arbórea, found within the Brazilian Atlantic Forest domain. This study involved 34 fishermen living at Cardoso and Cananéia Islands. The fishermen know more than 90 Atlantic Forest plant species that can be used to build the cerco-fixo. Tree species from the family Myrtaceae were the most quoted in the interviews. With respect to the ecological evaluation, the cluster analyses showed greater heterogeneity in terms of floristic composition (i.e. greater floristic dissimilarity) within the plots of the managed area. The analyses of diversity showed a slightly higher species richness and slightly lower values for Shannon, Simpson, Hurlbert's PIE and Evenness indices in the managed area (59 species; H' = 3.28; 1/D = 10.77; E = 0.80; Hurlbert's PIE = 0.91) compared to the unmanaged area (54 species; H' = 3.39; 1/D = 20.21; E = 0.85; Hurlbert's PIE = 0.95). The Hutcheson's t test showed no significant difference between both areas' Shannon diversity indices (t: -1.04; p: 0.30). These results are attributed to the greater dominance of the palm species Euterpe edulis Mart. in the managed area (28.2% of the trees sampled at this area; n = 118), which equals twice the percentage of individuals of the same species found for the unmanaged area (14.6% of the sampled

  13. Ecological and Economic Aspects of the Application of Sewage Sludge in Energetic Plant Plantations - A Swot Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wójcik, Marta; Stachowicz, Feliks; Masłoń, Adam

    2017-12-01

    Sewage sludge management in Poland is a relatively new field of waste management called "in statu nascendi", the standards of which have not been recognized yet. It also requires the implementation of new solutions in the field of sewage sludge. So far, the most popular method of sewage sludge utilization has been landfill disposal. In line with the restriction placed on landfill waste with a calorific value above 6 MJ/kg introduced on 1 January 2016, agricultural use and thermal methods are particularly applied. Municipal sewage sludge may be successfully used in the cultivation of energetic plant plantations. The aforementioned waste could be treated as an alternative to traditional mineral fertilizers, which in turn might successfully provide valuable nutrients for plants. This paper illustrates the SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) associated with the use of sewage sludge from Świlcza-Kamyszyn WTTP (Podkarpackie Province, Poland) for agricultural purposes. This analysis could be useful in evaluating the utility of sewage sludge in perennial plant plantations in order to determine the appropriate waste management strategies.

  14. Engineering stategies and implications of using higher plants for throttling gas and water exchange in a controlled ecological life support system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamberland, Dennis; Wheeler, Raymond M.; Corey, Kenneth A.

    1993-01-01

    Engineering stategies for advanced life support systems to be used on Lunar and Mars bases involve a wide spectrum of approaches. These range from purely physical-chemical life support strategies to purely biological approaches. Within the context of biological based systems, a bioengineered system can be devised that would utilize the metabolic mechanisms of plants to control the rates of CO2 uptake and O2 evolution (photosynthesis) and water production (transpiration). Such a mechanism of external engineering control has become known as throttling. Research conducted at the John F. Kennedy Space Center's Controlled Ecological Life Support System Breadboard Project has demonstrated the potential of throttling these fluxes by changing environmental parameters affecting the plant processes. Among the more effective environmental throttles are: light and CO2 concentration for controllingthe rate of photsynthesis and humidity and CO2 concentration for controlling transpiration. Such a bioengineered strategy implies control mechanisms that in the past have not been widely attributed to life support systems involving biological components and suggests a broad range of applications in advanced life support system design.

  15. Ecologically justified regulatory provisions for riverine hydroelectric power plants and minimum instream flow requirements in diverted streams; Oekologisch begruendete, dynamische Mindestwasserregelungen bei Ausleitungskraftwerken

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorde, K.

    1997-12-31

    The study was intended to develop a model versatile enough to permit quantification of various water demand scenarios in connection with operation of riverine hydroelectric power plants. Specific emphasis was to be placed on defining the minimum instream flow to be maintained in river segments because of the elementary significance to flowing water biocinoses. Based on fictitious minimum water requirements, various scenarious were simulated for flow regimes depending on power plant operation, so as to establish a system for comparative analysis and evaluation of resulting economic effects on power plant efficiency on the one hand, and the ecologic effects on the aquatic habitat. The information derived was to serve as a basis for decision-making for regulatory purposes. For this study, the temporal and spatial variability of the flow regime at the river bed in a river segment was examined for the first time. Based on this information, complemented by information obtained from habitat simulations, a method was derived for determination of ecologic requirements and their incorporation into regulatory water management provisions. The field measurements were carried out with the FST hemisphere as a proven and most efficient and reliable method of assessing flow regimes at river beds. Evaluation of the measured instream flow data characterising three morphologically different segments of diverted rivers was done with the CASIMIR computer code. The ASS models derived were used for comparative assessment of existing regulatory provisions and recommended amendments determining required minimum instream flow in diverted rivers. The requirements were defined taking as a basis data obtained for three different years. (orig./CB) [Deutsch] Ziel der Arbeit war die Entwicklung eines Modellverfahrens, das flexibel die Quantifizierung unterschiedlicher Nutzansprueche an Laufwasserkraftanlagen ermoeglicht. Insbesondere der Erhalt einer gewissen Dynamik, die fuer

  16. Ecologically justified regulatory provisions for riverine hydroelectric power plants and minimum instream flow requirements in diverted streams; Oekologisch begruendete, dynamische Mindestwasserregelungen bei Ausleitungskraftwerken

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorde, K

    1998-12-31

    The study was intended to develop a model versatile enough to permit quantification of various water demand scenarios in connection with operation of riverine hydroelectric power plants. Specific emphasis was to be placed on defining the minimum instream flow to be maintained in river segments because of the elementary significance to flowing water biocinoses. Based on fictitious minimum water requirements, various scenarious were simulated for flow regimes depending on power plant operation, so as to establish a system for comparative analysis and evaluation of resulting economic effects on power plant efficiency on the one hand, and the ecologic effects on the aquatic habitat. The information derived was to serve as a basis for decision-making for regulatory purposes. For this study, the temporal and spatial variability of the flow regime at the river bed in a river segment was examined for the first time. Based on this information, complemented by information obtained from habitat simulations, a method was derived for determination of ecologic requirements and their incorporation into regulatory water management provisions. The field measurements were carried out with the FST hemisphere as a proven and most efficient and reliable method of assessing flow regimes at river beds. Evaluation of the measured instream flow data characterising three morphologically different segments of diverted rivers was done with the CASIMIR computer code. The ASS models derived were used for comparative assessment of existing regulatory provisions and recommended amendments determining required minimum instream flow in diverted rivers. The requirements were defined taking as a basis data obtained for three different years. (orig./CB) [Deutsch] Ziel der Arbeit war die Entwicklung eines Modellverfahrens, das flexibel die Quantifizierung unterschiedlicher Nutzansprueche an Laufwasserkraftanlagen ermoeglicht. Insbesondere der Erhalt einer gewissen Dynamik, die fuer

  17. The contrasting nature of woody plant species in different neotropical forest biomes reflects differences in ecological stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pennington, R Toby; Lavin, Matt

    2016-04-01

    A fundamental premise of this review is that distinctive phylogenetic and biogeographic patterns in clades endemic to different major biomes illuminate the evolutionary process. In seasonally dry tropical forests (SDTFs), phylogenies are geographically structured and multiple individuals representing single species coalesce. This pattern of monophyletic species, coupled with their old species stem ages, is indicative of maintenance of small effective population sizes over evolutionary timescales, which suggests that SDTF is difficult to immigrate into because of persistent resident lineages adapted to a stable, seasonally dry ecology. By contrast, lack of coalescence in conspecific accessions of abundant and often widespread species is more frequent in rain forests and is likely to reflect large effective population sizes maintained over huge areas by effective seed and pollen flow. Species nonmonophyly, young species stem ages and lack of geographical structure in rain forest phylogenies may reflect more widespread disturbance by drought and landscape evolution causing resident mortality that opens up greater opportunities for immigration and speciation. We recommend full species sampling and inclusion of multiple accessions representing individual species in phylogenies to highlight nonmonophyletic species, which we predict will be frequent in rain forest and savanna, and which represent excellent case studies of incipient speciation. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  18. Rodent sperm analysis in field-based ecological risk assessment: pilot study at Ravenna army ammunition plant, Ravenna, Ohio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tannenbaum, L.V.; Bazar, M.; Hawkins, M.S.; Cornaby, B.W.; Ferguson, E.A.; Chantelle Carroll, L.; Ryan, P.F.

    2003-01-01

    Rodent sperm analysis is a visable method for use in field studies of risk at contaminated sites. - Ecological risk assessment (ERA) guidance recommends that field-truthing efforts proceed when modeled hazard quotients (HQs) suggest that toxicological effects are occurring to site receptors. To date, no field methods have been proposed by the regulatory community that can lead to definitive determinations of acceptable or unacceptable risk for birds and mammals, the two terrestrial classes of receptors that are commonly assessed using the HQ method. This paper describes rodent sperm analysis (RSA) as a viable method to be applied in the field at sites with historical contamination. RSA is capable of detecting biological differences that bear on reproduction, a highly regarded toxicological endpoint of concern in USEPA Superfund-type ERAs. The results of RSA's first application at a study site are reported and discussed. The paper also provides the rationale for RSA's efficacy in the context of Superfund and other environmental cleanup programs, where limited time and money are available to determine and evaluate the field condition

  19. Microbial and Organic Fine Particle Transport Dynamics in Streams - a Combined Experimental and Stochastic Modeling Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drummond, Jen; Davies-Colley, Rob; Stott, Rebecca; Sukias, James; Nagels, John; Sharp, Alice; Packman, Aaron

    2014-05-01

    Transport dynamics of microbial cells and organic fine particles are important to stream ecology and biogeochemistry. Cells and particles continuously deposit and resuspend during downstream transport owing to a variety of processes including gravitational settling, interactions with in-stream structures or biofilms at the sediment-water interface, and hyporheic exchange and filtration within underlying sediments. Deposited cells and particles are also resuspended following increases in streamflow. Fine particle retention influences biogeochemical processing of substrates and nutrients (C, N, P), while remobilization of pathogenic microbes during flood events presents a hazard to downstream uses such as water supplies and recreation. We are conducting studies to gain insights into the dynamics of fine particles and microbes in streams, with a campaign of experiments and modeling. The results improve understanding of fine sediment transport, carbon cycling, nutrient spiraling, and microbial hazards in streams. We developed a stochastic model to describe the transport and retention of fine particles and microbes in rivers that accounts for hyporheic exchange and transport through porewaters, reversible filtration within the streambed, and microbial inactivation in the water column and subsurface. This model framework is an advance over previous work in that it incorporates detailed transport and retention processes that are amenable to measurement. Solute, particle, and microbial transport were observed both locally within sediment and at the whole-stream scale. A multi-tracer whole-stream injection experiment compared the transport and retention of a conservative solute, fluorescent fine particles, and the fecal indicator bacterium Escherichia coli. Retention occurred within both the underlying sediment bed and stands of submerged macrophytes. The results demonstrate that the combination of local measurements, whole-stream tracer experiments, and advanced modeling

  20. Economic and ecological evaluation of biogas plant configurations for a demand oriented biogas supply for flexible power generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hahn, Henning

    2015-01-01

    The transformation of the power supply towards renewable energy (RE) sources will depend on a large scale of fluctuating RE sources, primarily of wind energy and photovoltaics. However, the variable power generation of these renewable sources will lead to an increased need of flexible power producers in order to balance differences between energy generation and consumption. Among the different types of RE sources, biogas plants have the advantage that their input biomass and the produced biogas can be stored and electricity can consequently be generated on demand. Since electricity from biogas has not been used to balance fluctuations of intermittent RE in the past, new concepts are required. These concepts should be able to meet the requirements of highly renewable electricity systems and to supply biogas according to the varying demand for long-and short-term balance power generation. In this regard, this thesis focused on the identification of biogas plant concepts for flexible power generation, as well as on ranking them regarding their economic and life cycle performance.

  1. Economic and ecological evaluation of biogas plant configurations for a demand oriented biogas supply for flexible power generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hahn, Henning

    2015-07-01

    The transformation of the power supply towards renewable energy (RE) sources will depend on a large scale of fluctuating RE sources, primarily of wind energy and photovoltaics. However, the variable power generation of these renewable sources will lead to an increased need of flexible power producers in order to balance differences between energy generation and consumption. Among the different types of RE sources, biogas plants have the advantage that their input biomass and the produced biogas can be stored and electricity can consequently be generated on demand. Since electricity from biogas has not been used to balance fluctuations of intermittent RE in the past, new concepts are required. These concepts should be able to meet the requirements of highly renewable electricity systems and to supply biogas according to the varying demand for long-and short-term balance power generation. In this regard, this thesis focused on the identification of biogas plant concepts for flexible power generation, as well as on ranking them regarding their economic and life cycle performance.

  2. Inclusion of ecologically based trait variation in plant functional types reduces the projected land carbon sink in an earth system model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verheijen, Lieneke M; Aerts, Rien; Brovkin, Victor; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Kattge, Jens; van Bodegom, Peter M

    2015-08-01

    Earth system models demonstrate large uncertainty in projected changes in terrestrial carbon budgets. The lack of inclusion of adaptive responses of vegetation communities to the environment has been suggested to hamper the ability of modeled vegetation to adequately respond to environmental change. In this study, variation in functional responses of vegetation has been added to an earth system model (ESM) based on ecological principles. The restriction of viable mean trait values of vegetation communities by the environment, called 'habitat filtering', is an important ecological assembly rule and allows for determination of global scale trait-environment relationships. These relationships were applied to model trait variation for different plant functional types (PFTs). For three leaf traits (specific leaf area, maximum carboxylation rate at 25 °C, and maximum electron transport rate at 25 °C), relationships with multiple environmental drivers, such as precipitation, temperature, radiation, and CO2 , were determined for the PFTs within the Max Planck Institute ESM. With these relationships, spatiotemporal variation in these formerly fixed traits in PFTs was modeled in global change projections (IPCC RCP8.5 scenario). Inclusion of this environment-driven trait variation resulted in a strong reduction of the global carbon sink by at least 33% (2.1 Pg C yr(-1) ) from the 2nd quarter of the 21st century onward compared to the default model with fixed traits. In addition, the mid- and high latitudes became a stronger carbon sink and the tropics a stronger carbon source, caused by trait-induced differences in productivity and relative respirational costs. These results point toward a reduction of the global carbon sink when including a more realistic representation of functional vegetation responses, implying more carbon will stay airborne, which could fuel further climate change. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. The effects of black-tailed prairie dogs on plant communities within a complex urban landscape: an ecological surprise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beals, Stower C; Hartley, Laurel M; Prevéy, Janet S; Seastedt, Timothy R

    2014-05-01

    Historically, prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) have been considered essential keystone species of western United States grassland ecosystems because they provide unique services and increase vegetation community richness, evenness, and diversity. However, the effects of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) on lands adjacent to or surrounded by urban areas may not result in the same ecosystem benefits historically associated with their presence. An urban landscape presents prairie dogs with movement challenges unparalleled in natural landscapes, as well as suites of nonnative plant species that are more common in disturbed areas. This study examined a complex ecosystem where vegetation communities are being influenced by directional environmental change, and quantified the synergistic effects resulting from the protective management of a native keystone species. The data set for this analysis was comprised of 71 paired (occupied by prairie dogs vs. unoccupied) vegetation surveys and 156 additional unpaired surveys collected from around the city of Boulder, Colorado, USA for 14 yr. Linear mixed models were used to compare data from transects occupied and unoccupied by prairie dogs, as well as to evaluate the effect of prairie dog occupation duration. In the absence of prairie dogs, vegetation in this region exhibited declines in native grasses, no changes in introduced grasses, and increases in native and nonnative forbs and bare soil over the study interval. In the presence of prairie dogs, these observed directional changes were nearly all amplified at rates four to 10 times greater than when prairie dogs were absent. Areas in Boulder occupied by prairie dogs also had significantly lower richness, evenness, and diversity of plant species, compared to unoccupied areas. Analysis of plant functional groups revealed the significant reduction of perennial native grasses, as well as a significantly higher cover of introduced forbs in occupied areas. Prairie dogs

  4. Development of the Lund AMS facility for the detection of Al-26 - with applications in plant ecology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Faarinen, Mikko

    2003-09-01

    Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) is a highly sensitive technique to count atoms. The method has a high efficiency, which makes it possible to measure small samples in a relatively short time, usually less than an hour. During the work for this thesis, methods have been developed to detect Al-26 at the Lund AMS facility. This includes the design, installation and testing of a new injector that is used mainly for Al-26 ions with the Pelletron accelerator at the Department of Physics, Lund. Al-26 is rare in nature and, as the natural background can therefore be ignored, well suited for tracer measurements. The long half life, 717,000 year, makes it difficult to measure Al-26 by conventional decay counting but is well suited for AMS measurements. A new, high resolution, 90 deg-injector has been installed in addition to the existing 15 deg-injector. The low mass resolution of the old 15 deg-injector allowed energy tails from MgH to pass the injector and, after being split during the stripping process, Mg-26 is able to enter the detector. This is the limiting factor for Al-26 measurements with the 15 deg-injector. For the new injector high quality energy- and mass-resolution is obtained by a 90 deg electrostatic energy analyser combined with a 90 deg magnetic mass analyser. Results of Al-26 measurements with the existing 15 deg-injector as well as with the new 90 deg-injector are presented. This injector has a more than ten times better resolution than the old 15 deg-injector. The new injector has proven to efficiently remove the troublesome isobar Al-26. Methods for preparing aluminium samples for the AMS ion source have been developed, both for chemically pure samples as well as for plant samples. The samples are dissolved in an acid to insure a homogeneous mixture of the Al-26 from the sample and the added Al-27 carrier. By heating the samples the Al is oxidised to Al2O3, which is a suitable material for AMS samples. As the amount of carrier is known, the content

  5. The ecological effects of different loading rates of metalaxyl on microbial biomass in unplanted and planted soils under field conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Mansourzadeh

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Fungicides are most widely used pesticides in Iran and the world. Application of fungicides may affect the populations and activity of soil microorganisms, particularly fungi, with a consequence for soil fertility and crop growth. In the current study, the effects of different levels of metalaxyl on soil microbial biomass carbon (C and nitrogen (N, microbial biomass C/N ratio and metabolic quotient under field conditions were assessed. Two levels of metalaxyl (30 and 60 kg.ha-1 were applied in planted soils with corn and unplanted calcareous soils, using a split-plots experiment in a completely randomized design with three replications. The C and N contents in soil microbial biomass as well as metabolic quotient were measured at 30 and 90 days after the onset of the experiment. Results showed that in cultivated soils metalaxyl application at 30 kg.ha-1 increased (15-80% significantly (p≤0.01 the amounts of microbial biomass C and N at both intervals (except microbial biomass C at 90 days compared to the control soil (0 kg.ha-1, while in uncultivated soils both microbial biomass C and N reduced by almost 1-34%. Microbial biomass C/N ratios in unplanted soils decreased (15 and 53% with increasing loading rates of metalaxyl, without a clear effect in cultivated soils. On the other hand, metabolic quotient values reduced (48% at 30 and 60 kg.ha-1 metalaxyl in corn-cultivated soils when compared to untreated soils while in uncultivated soils metalaxyl rate at 30 kg.a-1 had the greatest values at 30 days, and increased with increasing the levels of metalaxyl at 90 days. In summary, application of metalaxyl can either reduce or increase soil biological indices, and the direction and changes are depended upon the application rate of metalaxyl, time elapsed since metalaxyl application and the presence or absence of plant.

  6. Plant diversity affects GHG fluxes in an ecological engineering experiment in a disturbed Sphagnum peatland (La Guette, France)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gogo, Sébastien; Laggoun-Défarge, Fatima; Leroy, Fabien; Guimbaud, Christophe; Bernard-Jannin, Léonard

    2017-04-01

    Many Sphagnum peatlands are experiencing vegetation change caused mainly by hydrological disturbances. In the context of these direct and indirect modifications, greenhouse gases (GHG) fluxes are affected by peat oxygenation, changes in litter composition (and thus decomposition) and rhizospheric processes (such as root exudates). This could lead a C sink system to switch to a source. To restore peatland functioning, ecological engineering works can be undertaken. Our study site, La Guette peatland (central France) is invaded by Molinia caerulea because a drain at the output decreased the water table depth. It was shown that it functioned as a source of C. In 2014, hydrological works were undertaken: 8 dams were installed, ditches were dug perpendicular to the water flow and back-filled with a mixture of shales and bentonite. In addition, a biodiversity experiment with 2 identical experimental stations was implemented: "downstream", close to the hydraulic works (relatively wet), "upstream", (relatively dry), with types of 3 vegetation plot (2m x 2m, n=4): 1) "control": intact vegetation (Molinia caerulea, Erica tetralix), 2) "bare" peat: vegetation and 5cm of peat were removed, 3) "Sphagnum": bare peat+Sphagnum. Our study aims to assess the effect of the vegetation treatment on the GHG fluxes. CO2 (ecosystem respiration or ER, Gross Primary Production or GPP, and Net Ecosystem Exchange) and CH4 fluxes (manual accumulation chamber), air and soil temperature, water table level, soil moisture were measured. After 18 months, half of the surface of "bare" and "Sphagnum" plots were covered by vegetation (Eriophorum angustifolium, Rynchospora alba, Trichophorum cespitosum). With time, as succession unfolds in these 2 types of station, ER and GPP increased. The sensitivity of ER to temperature increased sharply in "bare" and "Sphagnum" plots with years and became higher than the sensitivity in "control" plots. GPP increased with the total vegetation percentage cover

  7. Methods of ecological capability evaluation of forest

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hosseini, M.; Makhdoum, M.F.; Akbarnia, M.; Saghebtalebi, Kh.

    2000-01-01

    In this research common methods of ecological capability evaluation of forests were reviewed and limitations for performance were analysed. Ecological capability of forests is an index that show site potential in several role of wood production, soil conservation, flood control, biodiversity, conservation and water supply. This index is related to ecological characteristics of land, such as soil, micro climate, elevation, slope and aspect that affect potential of sites. Suitable method of ecological capability evaluation must be chosen according to the objective of forestry. Common methods for ecological capability evaluation include plant and animal diversity, site index curve, soil and land form, inter branches, index plants, leave analyses, analyses regeneration and ecological mapping

  8. Restoration ecology and invasive riparian plants: An introduction to the special section on Tamarix spp. in western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shafroth, Patrick B.; Briggs, Mark K.

    2008-01-01

    River systems around the world are subject to various perturbations, including the colonization and spread of non-native species in riparian zones. Riparian resource managers are commonly engaged in efforts to control problematic non-native species and restore native habitats. In western North America, small Eurasian trees or shrubs in the genus Tamarixoccupy hundreds of thousands of hectares of riparian lands, and are the targets of substantial and costly control efforts and associated restoration activities. Still, significant information gaps exist regarding approaches used in control and restoration efforts and their effects on riparian ecosystems. In this special section of papers, eight articles address various aspects of control and restoration associated with Tamarix spp. These include articles focused on planning restoration and revegetation; a synthetic analysis of past restoration efforts; and several specific research endeavors examining plant responses, water use, and various wildlife responses (including birds, butterflies, and lizards). These articles represent important additions to the Tamarix spp. literature and contain many lessons and insights that should be transferable to other analogous situations in river systems globally.

  9. Approach to ecological assessment of power-plant-intake (316b) related issues: the Prairie Island case

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adams, S.M.; Vaughan, D.S.; Hildebrand, S.G.; Kumar, K.D.

    1981-04-01

    Assessment approaches and strategies useful in addressing important issues in section 316(b) of the 1972 Federal Water Pollution Control Act are illustrated in this report through the analysis and evaluation of the Prairie Island Nuclear Station 316(b) data base. The main issues in 316(b) demonstrations, cooling water intake operation and location, involve determining the impacts of entrainment and impingement. Entrainment impacts were addressed by applying the equivalent adult approach and correcting for inherent biases and by determining the through-plant survival of zooplankton. An assessment of impingement impacts was made by comparing for each of various species the number of fish impinged to estimates of population size. Densities of plankton and fish were compared between the intake area and an alternate area to determine if the location of the present intake minimizes impacts. No definitive conclusion relative to the best location of the intake could be made because of high year to year variability in the data and the differential dominance of trophic groups between areas

  10. The use of ecological theory and autecological datasets in studies of endangered plant and animal species and communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hodgson, John G.

    1991-12-01

    Full Text Available Few, if any, European habitats have been unaffected by modern land-use and the problems of conserving the diversity of the European flora and fauna are both urgent and immense. This paper describes a simple method for analyzing floristic change that is hoped will prove useful for assessing the nature and severity of these threats. The method involves the use of ecological theory and the collection of simple autecological data. Examples are given to illustrate how this approach can be used both to identify reasons for floristic change and to provide functional analyses of phytosociological data. Also, as a result of analyses of reasons for commonness and rarity in butterflies and birds, it is argued that similar functional interpretations of zoological datasets may soon be possible.

    [es] Considerando que prácticamente todos los hábitats de Europa han sido afectados por los usos de la tierra modernos, la conservación de la diversidad de su flora y fauna se presenta como un problema muy grave y urgente. En este artículo se describe un método simple para analizar cambios florísticos, contemplando el uso de la teoría ecológica y la colección de datos autoecológicos sencillos. Dicho método constituye una herramienta para evaluar la naturaleza y severidad de procesos de pérdida de la diversidad biológica. Se dan ejemplos ilustrando el uso de este enfoque en la identificación de las causas de cambios florísticos y en el análisis funcional de datos fitosociológicos. Se presentan, además, las razones que explican la presencia de especies raras o muy comunes de mariposas y aves. A partir de estos últimos resultados, se concluye que en breve será posible realizar una interpretación funcional similar de datos zoológicos.
    [de] Nur wenige, wenn überhaupt, der Lebensrame in Europa sind unberührt von moderner Landnutzung und die Probleme der Erhaltung der Vielfalt in der Flora und Fauna sind sowohl dringend als auch immens

  11. Ecology of the plant-dwelling spiders (Arachnida: Araneae of the Erfenis Dam Nature Reserve, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    René Fourie

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available As part of the South African National Survey of Arachnida in the Grassland Biome, foliage-dwelling and grass-dwelling spiders (Arachnida: Araneae were collected in the Erfenis Dam Nature Reserve in the central Free State Province from November 2005 to August 2007. Foliage-dwelling spiders were collected from three common tree or shrub species (Acacia karroo, Searsia ciliata and Searsia lancea and grass-dwellers from four contrasting grasslands (uniform Themeda triandra, mixed, weedy and woodland grasslands. From the grass layer, 1649 spiders were collected, representing 15 families and 82 species, whilst 496 tree-dwelling spiders were collected that represented 17 families and 52 species. There was some overlap in the fauna of the two strata, resulting in a total of 108 species from 18 families being collected. The Araneidae, Philodromidae, Salticidae and Thomisidae were consistently the most abundant in all grassland types and tree species, although Salticidae were scarce on A. karroo. Assemblage analysis indicates high similarity and overlap in the fauna of the four grassland types, suggesting that the structural complexity of grasslands has a limited effect on species composition. In contrast, the foliage-dwelling assemblages were more distinct, with only some overlap between the faunas of S. ciliata and A. karroo, suggesting a stronger vegetation structural effect in shaping arboreal spider assemblages. The isolation of trees and shrubs within the extensive grassy habitat may contribute to the more unique fauna and lower species richness of the woody vegetation. Conservation implications: This study uncovered a rich diversity of plant-dwelling spiders from central South Africa. Grassland faunas show considerable temporal variation and some variability in microhabitat preferences, and sampling protocols should take this into account when spiders are considered in management plans and biodiversity surveys in reserves and private land.

  12. Ecology of the plant-dwelling spiders (Arachnida: Araneae of the Erfenis Dam Nature Reserve, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    René Fourie

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available As part of the South African National Survey of Arachnida in the Grassland Biome, foliage-dwelling and grass-dwelling spiders (Arachnida: Araneae were collected in the Erfenis Dam Nature Reserve in the central Free State Province from November 2005 to August 2007. Foliage-dwelling spiders were collected from three common tree or shrub species (Acacia karroo, Searsia ciliata and Searsia lancea and grass-dwellers from four contrasting grasslands (uniform Themeda triandra, mixed, weedy and woodland grasslands. From the grass layer, 1649 spiders were collected, representing 15 families and 82 species, whilst 496 tree-dwelling spiders were collected that represented 17 families and 52 species. There was some overlap in the fauna of the two strata, resulting in a total of 108 species from 18 families being collected. The Araneidae, Philodromidae, Salticidae and Thomisidae were consistently the most abundant in all grassland types and tree species, although Salticidae were scarce on A. karroo. Assemblage analysis indicates high similarity and overlap in the fauna of the four grassland types, suggesting that the structural complexity of grasslands has a limited effect on species composition. In contrast, the foliage-dwelling assemblages were more distinct, with only some overlap between the faunas of S. ciliata and A. karroo, suggesting a stronger vegetation structural effect in shaping arboreal spider assemblages. The isolation of trees and shrubs within the extensive grassy habitat may contribute to the more unique fauna and lower species richness of the woody vegetation. Conservation implications: This study uncovered a rich diversity of plant-dwelling spiders from central South Africa. Grassland faunas show considerable temporal variation and some variability in microhabitat preferences, and sampling protocols should take this into account when spiders are considered in management plans and biodiversity surveys in reserves and private land.

  13. Variation in pollen limitation and floral parasitism across a mating system transition in a Pacific coastal dune plant: evolutionary causes or ecological consequences?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dart, Sara; Eckert, Christopher G

    2015-02-01

    Evolutionary transitions from outcrossing to self-fertilization are thought to occur because selfing provides reproductive assurance when pollinators or mates are scarce, but they could also occur via selection to reduce floral vulnerability to herbivores. This study investigated geographic covariation between floral morphology, fruit set, pollen limitation and florivory across the geographic range of Camissoniopsis cheiranthifolia, a Pacific coastal dune endemic that varies strikingly in flower size and mating system. Fruit set was quantified in 75 populations, and in 41 of these floral herbivory by larvae of a specialized moth (Mompha sp.) that consumes anthers in developing buds was also quantified. Experimental pollen supplementation was performed to quantify pollen limitation in three large-flowered, outcrossing and two small-flowered, selfing populations. These parameters were also compared between large- and small-flowered phenotypes within three mixed populations. Fruit set was much lower in large-flowered populations, and also much lower among large- than small-flowered plants within populations. Pollen supplementation increased per flower seed production in large-flowered but not small-flowered populations, but fruit set was not pollen limited. Hence inadequate pollination cannot account for the low fruit set of large-flowered plants. Floral herbivory was much more frequent in large-flowered populations and correlated negatively with fruit set. However, florivores did not preferentially attack large-flowered plants in three large-flowered populations or in two of three mixed populations. Selfing alleviated pollen limitation of seeds per fruit, but florivory better explains the marked variation in fruit set. Although florivory was more frequent in large-flowered populations, large-flowered individuals were not generally more vulnerable within populations. Rather than a causative selective factor, reduced florivory in small-flowered, selfing populations is

  14. Plant Host Finding by Parasitic Plants: A New Perspective on Plant to Plant Communication

    OpenAIRE

    Mescher, Mark C; Runyon, Justin B; De Moraes, Consuelo M

    2006-01-01

    Plants release airborne chemicals that can convey ecologically relevant information to other organisms. These plant volatiles are known to mediate a large array of, often complex, interactions between plants and insects. It has been suggested that plant volatiles may have similar importance in mediating interactions among plant species, but there are few well-documented examples of plant-to-plant communication via volatiles, and the ecological significance of such interactions has been much d...

  15. Nova Scotia Power : in-stream tidal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meade, K.

    2007-01-01

    The Government of Nova Scotia, the Government of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia Power and others have funded a feasibility study of North American sites for commercial instream tidal power. In July 2007, Nova Scotia Power received partial funding for a demonstration project. This presentation provided information on a demonstration plant for tidal power run by Nova Scotia Power. It discussed the benefits of the Open Hydro technology for this plant. In this simple design, the generator is on the circumference of the turbine. The design does not involve any power transmission systems or any pitching of blades. In addition, the technology is environmentally sound as it is completely shrouded, has low rotational speed, and a large open centre allows fish to pass through, and it does not require lubricants. The last benefit that was presented was the scale up of 250 kW machine deployed in a European test facility. The presentation also discussed the advantages of developing tidal power at this time. It was concluded that tidal energy has significant potential. Although it is intermittent, it is predictable and bulk power system can be scheduled to accommodate it. figs

  16. Landscape Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Andreas Aagaard; Brandt, Jesper; Svenningsen, Stig Roar

    2017-01-01

    Landscape ecology is an interdisciplinary field of research and practice that deals with the mutual association between the spatial configuration and ecological functioning of landscapes, exploring and describing processes involved in the differentiation of spaces within landscapes......, and the ecological significance of the patterns which are generated by such processes. In landscape ecology, perspectives drawn from existing academic disciplines are integrated based on a common, spatially explicit mode of analysis developed from classical holistic geography, emphasizing spatial and landscape...... pattern analysis and ecological interaction of land units. The landscape is seen as a holon: an assemblage of interrelated phenomena, both cultural and biophysical, that together form a complex whole. Enduring challenges to landscape ecology include the need to develop a systematic approach able...

  17. Functional Process Zones Characterizing Aquatic Insect Communities in Streams of the Brazilian Cerrado.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godoy, B S; Simião-Ferreira, J; Lodi, S; Oliveira, L G

    2016-04-01

    Stream ecology studies see to understand ecological dynamics in lotic systems. The characterization of streams into Functional Process Zones (FPZ) has been currently debated in stream ecology because aquatic communities respond to functional processes of river segments. Therefore, we tested if different functional process zones have different number of genera and trophic structure using the aquatic insect community of Neotropical streams. We also assessed whether using physical and chemical variables may complement the approach of using FPZ to model communities of aquatic insects in Cerrado streams. This study was conducted in 101 streams or rivers from the central region of the state of Goiás, Brazil. We grouped the streams into six FPZ associated to size of the river system, presence of riparian forest, and riverbed heterogeneity. We used Bayesian models to compare number of genera and relative frequency of the feeding groups between FPZs. Streams classified in different FPZs had a different number of genera, and the largest and best preserved rivers had an average of four additional genera. Trophic structure exhibited low variability among FPZs, with little difference both in the number of genera and in abundance. Using functional process zones in Cerrado streams yielded good results for Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera communities. Thus, species distribution and community structure in the river basin account for functional processes and not necessarily for the position of the community along a longitudinal dimension of the lotic system.

  18. Floral characteristics and pollination ecology of Manglietia ventii (Magnoliaceae, a plant species with extremely small populations (PSESP endemic to South Yunnan of China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin Wang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Manglietia ventii is a highly endangered plant species endemic to Yunnan province in China, where there are only five known small populations. Despite abundant flowering there is very low fruit and seed set, and very few seedlings in natural populations, indicating problems with reproduction. The causes of low fecundity in M. ventii are not known, largely because of insufficient knowledge of the species pollination ecology and breeding system. We conducted observations and pollination experiments, and analyzed floral scents to understand the pollinator–plant interactions and the role of floral scent in this relationship, as well as the species breeding system. Like the majority of Magnoliaceae, M. ventii has protogynous and nocturnal flowers that emit a strong fragrance over two consecutive evenings. There is a closing period (the pre-staminate stage during the process of anthesis of a flower, and we characterize the key flowering process as an “open-close-reopen” flowering rhythm with five distinct floral stages observed throughout the floral period of this species: pre-pistillate, pistillate, pre-staminate, staminate, and post-staminate. Flowers are in the pistillate stage during the first night of anthesis and enter the staminate stage the next night. During anthesis, floral scent emission occurs in the pistillate and staminate stages. The effective pollinators were weevils (Sitophilus sp. and beetles (Anomala sp., while the role of Rove beetles (Aleochara sp. and thrips (Thrips sp. in pollination of M. ventii appears to be minor or absent. The major chemical compounds of the floral scents were Limonene, β-Pinene, α-Pinene, 1,8-Cineole, Methyl-2-methylbutyrate, p-Cymene, Methyl-3-methyl-2-butenoate and 2-Methoxy-2-methyl-3-buten, and the relative proportions of these compounds varied between the pistillate and staminate stages. Production of these chemicals coincided with flower visitation by weevils and beetles. The results of

  19. Landscape Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Andreas Aagaard; Brandt, Jesper; Svenningsen, Stig Roar

    2017-01-01

    , and the ecological significance of the patterns which are generated by such processes. In landscape ecology, perspectives drawn from existing academic disciplines are integrated based on a common, spatially explicit mode of analysis developed from classical holistic geography, emphasizing spatial and landscape...... to translate positivist readings of the environment and hermeneutical perspectives on socioecological interaction into a common framework or terminology....

  20. Seed isotopic analysis as a tool to understand ecological processes influencing plant development and physiology: the case study of Quercus rotundifolia Lam. in a desertification gradient in Mediterranean areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Tatiana; Silva, Anabela; Rodrigues, Carla; Antunes Antunes, Cristina; Pinho, Pedro; Ramos, Alzira; João Pereira, Maria; Branquinho, Cristina; Máguas, Cristina

    2014-05-01

    Plant responses to climate change highly depend on the temporal variability in precipitation events and on plant specific strategies, such as drought tolerance and resilience. Within the different plant organs, seeds have become an important research tool in the past years to study plant development and nutrients allocation. Key features of seeds such as the tendency to accumulate and store nutrient compounds open many possibilities to explore isotope analysis (13C, 15N and 18O), with many outcomes in fields from ecology to food traceability. The application of light stable isotopes to plant materials have been used to study both physiological (i.e. photosynthesis and stomatal conductance), nutrients uptake and metabolism (origin of nitrogen and symbiotic associations) as well as many ecological processes, which will produce a distinctive isotope fingerprint on the plant tissues. Thus, the isotopic composition of certain bio and geo-elements of seeds, yielding relevant information on plant ecophysiology, are able to relate the plant functioning with local climatic conditions (e.g., temperature and precipitation). The application of isotope analysis in this way can be used as a proxy to understand complex environmental degradation processes such as land degradation in drylands resulting from various factors including climatic variations and human activities. In this study acorns of Quercus ilex plants were sampled during 2012-2013 in a region of southern Portugal, according to (i) soil land-use; (ii) aridity and desertification indexes. The approach developed combined plant seed analysis (seed morphology and compounds quantification) with isotope ratio mass spectrometry (δ13C, δ15N and δ18O) as a "tool" to study changes in plant ecophysiology over time and space. Seeds allow studies at specific temporal scale (development period) which varies according to its biology and depends on the climatic conditions where the plant is grown (i.e, seed's biomass integrate

  1. Ecological alarm system for Itaipu

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Faehser, L.

    1984-05-01

    At Itaipu, on the Rio Parana, Brazil and Paraguay are constructing the world's largest hydro-electric power plant with a capacity seven times as high as that of Assuan. An information system is intended to give fair warning in case of threatening ecological conditions. The computer-supported alarm system had four objectives: 1. presentation of the present ecological situation; 2. evaluation of the ecological risks; 3. warning about ecological deficits; 4. suggestions for establishing ecological stability. In a first step the available inventory data concerning soil, topography, vegetation and water were evaluated by expert groups according to their risk grade (0-4) and ecological weight (1-10). The product of these evaluations indicates the ecological deficit (0-40). At a threshold value of 30, the information system automatically signals ecological alarm and locates the centre of danger via computer-plotted maps and tables. The necessary data are supplied periodically by selected measurement stations. Quantification of ecological facts enables the persons who are responsible for decisions at Itaipu to recognize, avoid, or diminish elements of danger even if they have little or no ecological knowledge. The file of data that has been compiled so far should be extended parallel with the development in the Itaipu area. With the help of factor analysis connections of cause and effect can be detected in this extremely complex reservoir system which has hardly been explored yet.

  2. Concentration of radiocesium in stream water from a mountainous catchment area during rainfall events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakamura, Kimihito; Yasutaka, Tetsuo; Hatakeyama, Masato

    2012-01-01

    Terrestrial and aquatic systems were contaminated with radioactive materials following the nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station on 11 March, 2011. It is important that levels of radiocesium (Cs) in stream water from affected areas be monitored as this water is used for paddy irrigation and domestic water. Additionally, soil particles and organic matter from the streams are deposited in rivers, estuaries and into the ocean. Predictions suggest that Cs levels will increase during intense rainfall-runoff events. To check this prediction, we monitored temporal changes in runoff events and Cs levels in stream water from a mountainous catchment area northwest of the Fukushima plant. In March and April, 2012, the concentrations of Cs and suspended solids (SS) in stream water taken from low-level water flow were found to be 0.2–0.3 Bq/L and 2–7 mg/L, respectively. A heavy rainfall event in July 2012 resulted in an increase and subsequent decrease of both the runoff volume and SS concentration. At the beginning of the rainfall event the concentration of Cs absorbed in the SS was measured to be 23 Bq/L, this decreased gradually to 0.3 Bq/L over the course of the event. The concentration of Cs dissolved in the water was 0.1 Bq/L, this decreased only slightly during the runoff event. During a low rainfall event in September 2012 the concentration of Cs absorbed in the SS at the beginning of the rainfall event was found to be 15 Bq/L, this decreased gradually to 0.5 Bq/L as the amount of SS in the water decreased. The concentration of Cs dissolved in the water was 0.2 Bq/L, again this decreased only slightly over the course of the runoff event. The Cs levels in stream water, during rainfall-runoff events, were primary influenced by the concentration of SS. The amount of Cs dissolved in the water, on the other hand, was roughly constant at 0.1–0.2 Bq/L. The results of this study indicate that, although the concentration of Cs in stream water is below

  3. Concentration of radiocesium in stream water from a mountainous catchment area during rainfall events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakamura, Kimihito; Yasutaka, Tetsuo; Hatakeyama, Masato

    2013-01-01

    Terrestrial and aquatic systems were contaminated with radioactive materials following the nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station on 11 March, 2011. It is important that levels of radiocesium (Cs) in stream water from affected areas be monitored as this water is used for paddy irrigation and domestic water. Additionally, soil particles and organic matter from the streams are deposited in rivers, estuaries and into the ocean. Predictions suggest that Cs levels will increase during intense rainfall-runoff events. To check this prediction, we monitored temporal changes in runoff events and Cs levels in stream water from a mountainous catchment area northwest of the Fukushima plant. In March and April, 2012, the concentrations of Cs and suspended solids (SS) in stream water taken from low-level water flow were found to be 0.2-0.3 Bq/L and 2-7 mg/L, respectively. A heavy rainfall event in July 2012 resulted in an increase and subsequent decrease of both the runoff volume and SS concentration. At the beginning of the rainfall event the concentration of Cs absorbed in the SS was measured to be 23 Bq/L, this decreased gradually to 0.3 Bq/L over the course of the event. The concentration of Cs dissolved in the water was 0.1 Bq/L, this decreased only slightly during the runoff event. During a low rainfall event in September 2012 the concentration of Cs absorbed in the SS at the beginning of the rainfall event was found to be 15 Bq/L, this decreased gradually to 0.5 Bq/L as the amount of SS in the water decreased. The concentration of Cs dissolved in the water was 0.2 Bq/L, again this decreased only slightly over the course of the runoff event. The Cs levels in stream water, during rainfall-runoff events, were primary influenced by the concentration of SS. The amount of Cs dissolved in the water, on the other hand, was roughly constant at 0.1-0.2 Bq/L. The results of this study indicate that, although the concentration of Cs in stream water is below the

  4. Do stage-specific functional responses of consumers dampen the effects of subsidies on trophic cascades in streams?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Takuya; Watanabe, Katsutoshi

    2014-07-01

    Resource subsidies often weaken trophic cascades in recipient communities via consumers' functional response to the subsidies. Consumer populations are commonly stage-structured and may respond to the subsidies differently among the stages yet less is known about how this might impact the subsidy effects on the strength of trophic cascades in recipient systems. We show here, using a large-scale field experiment, that the stage structure of a recipient consumer would dampen the effects of terrestrial invertebrate subsidies on the strength of trophic cascade in streams. When a high input rate of the terrestrial invertebrates was available, both large and small fish stages switched their diet to the terrestrial subsidy, which weakened the trophic cascade in streams. However, when the input rate of the terrestrial invertebrates was at a moderate level, the terrestrial subsidy did not weaken the trophic cascade. This discrepancy was likely due to small fish stages being competitively excluded from feeding on the subsidy by larger stages of fish and primarily foraging on benthic invertebrates under the moderate input level. Although previous studies using single fish stages have clearly demonstrated that the terrestrial invertebrate input equivalent to our moderate input rate weakened the trophic cascade in streams, this subsidy effect might be overestimated given small fish stage may not switch their diet to the subsidy under competition with large fish stage. Given the ubiquity of consumer stage structure and interaction among consumer stages, the effects we saw might be widespread in nature, requiring future studies that explicitly involve consumer's stage structure into community ecology. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2013 British Ecological Society.

  5. Ecological impact assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thomas, J.M.; Eberhardt, L.L.

    1975-01-01

    Quantitative problems in accomplishing ecological impact assessment with particular reference to defining population effects are discussed with some comments on the two approaches most commonly used, e.g., the experimental and simulation models. Some alternatives are suggested because both methods will probably fail to detect real population effects mostly due to poor understanding of ecosystems or because of the limitations inherent in field census methods. Most judgments of ecological impact are not quantitatively defensible but are qualitative, subjective, or political in nature. An examination of aggregates of data from various nuclear power plant sites may be one way to obtain enough replication to judge ecological impact. Thus, currently available data from such studies as well as appropriate demographic, vegetation, census, and bibliographic material could offer an interesting challenge to computer professionals if such an undertaking were contemplated. Present research programs at PNL and computer involvement are described. Future possibilities and directions are discussed. (U.S.)

  6. Assessment of the ecological impacts of macroroughness elements in stream flows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niayifar, Amin; Oldroyd, Holly J.; Perona, Paolo

    2017-04-01

    The environmental suitability of flow release rules is often assessed for different fish species by modeling (e.g., CASiMir and PHABSIM) Weighted Usable Area (WUA) curves. However, these models are not able to resolve the hydrodynamic at small scales, e.g. that induced by the presence of macroroughness (e.g., single stones), which yet determine relatively large wakes that may contribute significantly in terms of habitat suitability. The presence of stones generates sheltered zones (i.e., the wake), which are typically temporary stationary points for many fish species. By resting in these low velocity regions, fishes minimize energy expenditure, and can quickly move to nearby fast water to feed (Hayes and Jowett, 1994). Following the analytical model proposed by Negretti et al., (2006), we developed an analytical solution for the wake area behind the macroroughness elements. The total wake area in the river reach being monitored is a function of the streamflow, Q, and it is an actual Usable Area for fishes that can be used to correct the one computed by classic software such as PHABSIM or CASIMIR at each flow rate. By quantifying these wake areas we can therefore assess how the physical properties and number of such zones change in response to the changing hydrologic regime. In order to validate the concept, we selected a 400 meter reach from the Aare river in the center of Switzerland. The statistical distribution of macroroughness elements is obtained by taking orthorectified aerial photographs by drone surveys during low flow conditions. Then, the distribution of the wakes is obtained analytically as a derived distribution. This methodology allows to save computational costs and the time for detailed field surveys.

  7. Consequences of intra-specific metabolic diversity in plants for soil organisms : a baseline approach for evaluating ecological effects of genetic modifications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kabouw, P.

    2012-01-01

    Plant intra-specific variation, i.e. variation within a plant species, is known to affect organisms that are directly associated to plants. These effects may be due to for example differences in nutritional quality or defensive metabolites. Plant intra-specific variation can also affect

  8. Environmental monitoring and ecological studies program. 1974 annual report for the Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant near Red Wing, Minnesota. Volume II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1975-06-01

    Data are presented from studies on the effects of thermal effluents from the Prairie Island nuclear power plant on fish and invertebrate populations in the Mississippi River in the vicinity of the plant. Populations of aquatic and terrestrial plants and birds in the immediate vicinity of the plant were also characterized. (U.S.)

  9. Continuous turbidity monitoring in streams of northwestern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rand Eads; Jack Lewis

    2002-01-01

    Abstract - Redwood Sciences Laboratory, a field office of the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station has developed and refined methods and instrumentation to monitor turbidity and suspended sediment in streams of northern California since 1996. Currently we operate 21 stations and have provided assistance in the installation of 6 gaging stations for...

  10. Estimating autotrophic respiration in streams using daily metabolism data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowing the fraction of gross primary production (GPP) that is immediately respired by autotrophs and their closely associated heterotrophs (ARf) is necessary to understand the trophic base and carbon spiraling in streams. We show a means to estimate ARf from daily metabolism da...

  11. Evaluation of Heavy Metals in Stream Sediments from Abakaliki Pb ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROF HORSFALL

    Evaluation of Heavy Metals in Stream Sediments from Abakaliki Pb – Zn Ore Mining. Areas of Ebonyi ... produced both for local consumption and also for food supplies to other .... of deionised water using a pH-meter (Aqualytica. Model pH 17).

  12. Community Ecology

    CERN Document Server

    1988-01-01

    This book presents the proceedings of a workshop on community ecology organized at Davis, in April, 1986, sponsored by the Sloan Foundation. There have been several recent symposia on community ecology (Strong et. al., 1984, Diamond and Case, 1987) which have covered a wide range of topics. The goal of the workshop at Davis was more narrow: to explore the role of scale in developing a theoretical approach to understanding communities. There are a number of aspects of scale that enter into attempts to understand ecological communities. One of the most basic is organizational scale. Should community ecology proceed by building up from population biology? This question and its ramifications are stressed throughout the book and explored in the first chapter by Simon Levin. Notions of scale have long been important in understanding physical systems. Thus, in understanding the interactions of organisms with their physical environment, questions of scale become paramount. These more physical questions illustrate the...

  13. Towards the ecological dredger

    OpenAIRE

    Rodríguez, Sergio; Lago, Alberto; Villodas, Aritz; Picón, Artzai

    2010-01-01

    The dredging is a process that intrinsically damages the aquatic environment. Suctioning part of the aquatic bottom surface suppose not only change the ecosystem but it endanger the life of the animal and plant species. Nowadays, there is doing a lot of efforts to improve the ecological aspect of the dredging process. In this work, we propose the introduction of machine vision techniques to obtain this improvement, using hyperspectral imaging. The performed tests show that is p...

  14. [Basic theory and research method of urban forest ecology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Xingyuan; Jin, Yingshan; Zhu, Wenquan; Xu, Wenduo; Chen, Wei

    2002-12-01

    With the development of world economy and the increment of urban population, the urban environment problem hinders the urban sustainable development. Now, more and more people realized the importance of urban forests in improving the quality of urban ecology. Therefore, a new subject, urban forest ecology, and correlative new concept frame in the field formed. The theoretic foundation of urban forest ecology derived from the mutual combination of theory relating to forest ecology, landscape ecology, landscape architecture ecology and anthrop-ecology. People survey the development of city from the view of ecosystem, and regard the environment, a colony of human, animals and plants, as main factors of the system. The paper introduces systematically the urban forest ecology as follows: 1) the basic concept of urban forest ecology; 2) the meaning of urban forest ecology; 3) the basic principle and theoretic base of urban forest ecology; 4) the research method of urban forest ecology; 5) the developmental expectation of urban forest ecology.

  15. Ecological and economic assessment and optimisation of measures for in-house recycling in hot galvanizing plants; Oekologische und oekonomische Beurteilung und Optimierung von Massnahmen zur innerbetrieblichen Stoffkreislaufschliessung beim Feuerverzinken von Stahl

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ackermann, R.; Fleischer, G. [TU Berlin, Inst. fuer Technischen Umweltschutz, Lehrstuhl Abfallvermeidung und Sekundaerrohstoffwirtschaft, Berlin (Germany)

    2003-07-01

    Exemplary strategies for materials use and recycling in a plant for hot galvanizing of steel are reviewed from an ecological and economic viewpoint and optimized. The changes resulting from the optimization measures are assessed in terms of cost and potential ecological effects. The results of this assessment, which is based on the methodology published in DIN EN ISO 14040 ff, illustrate the potential contained in the recycling option. (orig.) [German] Fuer das Feuerverzinken von Stahlbauteilen werden beispielhaft Strategien zur innerbetrieblichen Stoffkreislaufschliessung oekologisch und oekonomisch beurteilt und optimiert. Die sich hinsichtlich der betrieblichen Stoff- und Energiefluesse durch Optimierungsmassnahmen ergebenden Veraenderungen werden in Bezug auf die Kostensituation des Unternehmens und die oekologischen potentiellen Auswirkungen beurteilt. Die Ergebnisse der Oekologischen Betriebsoptimierung, die unter Nutzung methodischer Elemente der Oekobilanzierung (DIN EN ISO 14040 ff) erzielt werden, verdeutlichen, welche Potentiale in einer weitgehenden Schliessung des Stoffkreislaufs liegen. (orig.)

  16. Automated experimentation in ecological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lurgi, Miguel; Robertson, David

    2011-05-09

    In ecological networks, natural communities are studied from a complex systems perspective by representing interactions among species within them in the form of a graph, which is in turn analysed using mathematical tools. Topological features encountered in complex networks have been proved to provide the systems they represent with interesting attributes such as robustness and stability, which in ecological systems translates into the ability of communities to resist perturbations of different kinds. A focus of research in community ecology is on understanding the mechanisms by which these complex networks of interactions among species in a community arise. We employ an agent-based approach to model ecological processes operating at the species' interaction level for the study of the emergence of organisation in ecological networks. We have designed protocols of interaction among agents in a multi-agent system based on ecological processes occurring at the interaction level between species in plant-animal mutualistic communities. Interaction models for agents coordination thus engineered facilitate the emergence of network features such as those found in ecological networks of interacting species, in our artificial societies of agents. Agent based models developed in this way facilitate the automation of the design an execution of simulation experiments that allow for the exploration of diverse behavioural mechanisms believed to be responsible for community organisation in ecological communities. This automated way of conducting experiments empowers the study of ecological networks by exploiting the expressive power of interaction models specification in agent systems.

  17. Twenty-five years of research in hydro-ecology at the EDF research and development division

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gosse, Ph.

    1999-01-01

    Hydro-ecology (or aquatic ecology) is the study of aquatic systems in their interacting aspects: physical, chemical and biological. The creation in 1974 of the Environment Department at EDF Research and Development Division marked the start in France of quantitative hydro-ecology applied to power generation installations. The studies developed around several main themes, determined both the expansion of the nuclear programme and by changes in French environmental regulations, in particular the 1976 law on impact studies, the 1984 fishing and hydro-biology law and the 1992 water law. In this framework, he effect of artificial warming of rivers, eutrophication of continental and marine waters, transfers of mineral micro-pollutants and radionuclides in rivers, and problems specific to hydropower installations such as guaranteed in stream flow or fish pass design, have been studies. This work, conducted in collaboration with many other laboratories, has led to the development of original quantitative approaches, notably in the field of numerical modelling. The paper selects several of the tools developed whose scope of application is wider than the environment and management of thermal or hydropower plants. Two major applications grouping the experience acquired in hydro-ecology are presented: the AGIRE software and the global environment study of the Singrauli area in India. (author)

  18. Ecological behavior and effects of energy related pollutants. Progress report, June 1976--August 1977. [SO2 impact on survival and stability of plant species; fallout /sup 137/Cs transfer processes in Southeastern Coastal Plain ecosystem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Platt, R.B.; Ragsdale, H.L.; Murdy, W.H.; Shure, D.J.

    1977-10-25

    The impact of SO/sub 2/ on the survival and stability of plant populations and communities was studied. The results to date have an important bearing on the adequacy of current permissible ambient air levels for SO/sub 2/. Atmospheric SO/sub 2/ concentrations at near permissible levels had a significant adverse effect on sexual reproduction processes, which results in a reduced number of viable seeds, in all 8 populations tested. Implications for both natural and agricultural plant species and possible significant losses of fruit production are discussed. An ecological implication of the invisible effect of fruit and seed mortality is postulated since the life cycle of many insects and the trophic relations of numerous animals depend, at least in part, on fruit production by trees and shrubs. Hence, there is a potential for disruptive effects on ecosystem level processes. Results are also reported from four systems-oriented studies within the Lower Three Runs Creek Watershed, Savannah River Plant, to examine fallout /sup 137/Cs transfer processes in ecological systems characteristic of the Southeastern Coastal Plain. These studies were carried out within the stream and its floodplains, within floodplains along the stream gradient, in upland aquatic systems (Carolina Bays), and in the upland scrub-oak forest system. Results are discussed.

  19. Assessment of ecological studies examining the risk of thyroid cancer in children through radiation exposure following the nuclear power plant disaster in Chernobyl

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blettner, M.; Jacob, P.; Kaiser, C.J.; Bertelsmann, H.; Kutschmann, M.

    2005-01-01

    Epidemiological studies can be divided into studies with an individual database (cohort studies, case control studies) and studies with aggregate data (ecological studies). The former have the advantage that they can make use of methods based on risk models and examine dose-effect curves with due consideration to potential confounders, but the drawback of being expensive. Studies based on aggregate data can take account of large case numbers at comparatively low cost. However, ecological studies are also associated with serious methodological problems, especially when the goal is to find causal links (''ecological bias''). Thus it is well known that variations in a confounding factor (such as smoking in a study on lung cancer through radon) can invalidate the results of studies based on aggregate data. On the other hand, the only studies to have produced quantitative results on the risk of acquiring thyroid cancer through 131 I exposure during childhood in areas contaminated by the Chernobyl disaster happen to be based on aggregate data. The purpose of the present paper is to examine problems associated with ecological studies which have already been in the focus of many studies of epidemiological methodology in terms of whether they are relevant to studies investigating connections between thyroid cancer and 131 I exposure. It also presents the results of several simulation studies which examine the degree of distortion associated with ecological analyses

  20. Ecological macroeconomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røpke, Inge

    2013-01-01

    by a more theoretical debate and increased interaction between the heterodox schools of ecological economics and post-Keynesian economics. In addition, both the degrowth community and the research community organized around sustainable transitions of socio-technical systems have contributed to discussions...... on how to reconcile environmental and social concerns. Based on this broad variety of pieces in a jigsaw puzzle, a new ecological macroeconomics is emerging, but the contours are still vague. This chapter seeks to outline some of this topography and to add a few pieces of its own by highlighting the need...... to shift resources from consumption to investment and describing the role of consumer-citizens in such a change. The chapter starts by identifying the problems and challenges for an ecological macroeconomics. The next section outlines some of the shortcomings of traditional macroeconomics...

  1. Ecology of the Nevada Test Site. I. Geographic and ecologic distributions of the vascular flora (annotated checklist)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beatley, J C

    1965-04-01

    A checklist of vascular plants of the Nevada Test Site is presented for use in studies of plant ecology. Data on the occurrence and distribution of plant species are included. Collections were made from both undisturbed and disturbed sites.

  2. Development and testing of an in-stream phosphorus cycling model for the soil and water assessment tool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Michael J; Storm, Daniel E; Mittelstet, Aaron; Busteed, Philip R; Haggard, Brian E; Rossi, Colleen

    2014-01-01

    The Soil and Water Assessment Tool is widely used to predict the fate and transport of phosphorus (P) from the landscape through streams and rivers. The current in-stream P submodel may not be suitable for many stream systems, particularly those dominated by attached algae and those affected by point sources. In this research, we developed an alternative submodel based on the equilibrium P concentration concept coupled with a particulate scour and deposition model. This submodel was integrated with the SWAT model and applied to the Illinois River Watershed in Oklahoma, a basin influenced by waste water treatment plant discharges and extensive poultry litter application. The model was calibrated and validated using measured data. Highly variable in-stream P concentrations and equilibrium P concentration values were predicted spatially and temporally. The model also predicted the gradual storage of P in streambed sediments and the resuspension of this P during periodic high-flow flushing events. Waste water treatment plants were predicted to have a profound effect on P dynamics in the Illinois River due to their constant discharge even under base flow conditions. A better understanding of P dynamics in stream systems using the revised submodel may lead to the development of more effective mitigation strategies to control the impact of P from point and nonpoint sources. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  3. Relationships between indicators of acid-base chemistry and fish assemblages in streams of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldigo, Barry P.; Kulp, Matt A.; Schwartz, John S.

    2018-01-01

    The acidity of many streams in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GRSM) has increased significantly since pre-industrial (∼1850) times due to the effects of highly acidic atmospheric deposition in poorly buffered watersheds. Extensive stream-monitoring programs since 1993 have shown that fish and macroinvertebrate assemblages have been adversely affected in many streams across the GRSM. Matching chemistry and fishery information collected from 389 surveys performed at 52 stream sites over a 22-year period were assessed using logistic regression analysis to help inform the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s assessment of the environmental impacts of emissions of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and sulfur (SOx). Numerous logistic equations and associated curves were derived that defined the relations between acid neutralizing capacity (ANC) or pH and different levels of community richness, density, and biomass; and density and biomass of brook trout, rainbow trout, and small prey (minnow) populations in streams of the GRSM. The equations and curves describe the status of fish assemblages in the GRSM under contemporary emission levels and deposition loads of nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) and provide a means to estimate how newly proposed (and various alternative) target deposition loads, which strongly influence stream ANC, might affect key ecological indicators. Several examples using ANC, community richness, and brook trout density are presented to illustrate the steps needed to predict how future changes in stream chemistry (resulting from different target deposition loads of N and S) will affect the probabilities of observing specific levels of selected biological indicators in GRSM streams. The implications of this study to the regulation of NOx and SOx emissions, water quality, and fisheries management in streams of the GRSM are discussed, but also qualified by the fact that specific examples provided need to be further explored before recommendations

  4. Pesticides from wastewater treatment plant effluents affect invertebrate communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Münze, Ronald; Hannemann, Christin; Orlinskiy, Polina; Gunold, Roman; Paschke, Albrecht; Foit, Kaarina; Becker, Jeremias; Kaske, Oliver; Paulsson, Elin; Peterson, Märit; Jernstedt, Henrik; Kreuger, Jenny; Schüürmann, Gerrit; Liess, Matthias

    2017-12-01

    We quantified pesticide contamination and its ecological impact up- and downstream of seven wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in rural and suburban areas of central Germany. During two sampling campaigns, time-weighted average pesticide concentrations (c TWA ) were obtained using Chemcatcher® passive samplers; pesticide peak concentrations were quantified with event-driven samplers. At downstream sites, receiving waters were additionally grab sampled for five selected pharmaceuticals. Ecological effects on macroinvertebrate structure and ecosystem function were assessed using the biological indicator system SPEAR pesticides (SPEcies At Risk) and leaf litter breakdown rates, respectively. WWTP effluents substantially increased insecticide and fungicide concentrations in receiving waters; in many cases, treated wastewater was the exclusive source for the neonicotinoid insecticides acetamiprid and imidacloprid in the investigated streams. During the ten weeks of the investigation, five out of the seven WWTPs increased in-stream pesticide toxicity by a factor of three. As a consequence, at downstream sites, SPEAR values and leaf litter degradation rates were reduced by 40% and 53%, respectively. The reduced leaf litter breakdown was related to changes in the macroinvertebrate communities described by SPEAR pesticides and not to altered microbial activity. Neonicotinoids showed the highest ecological relevance for the composition of invertebrate communities, occasionally exceeding the Regulatory Acceptable Concentrations (RACs). In general, considerable ecological effects of insecticides were observed above and below regulatory thresholds. Fungicides, herbicides and pharmaceuticals contributed only marginally to acute toxicity. We conclude that pesticide retention of WWTPs needs to be improved. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. The ecology and biogeochemistry of stream biofilms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battin, Tom J; Besemer, Katharina; Bengtsson, Mia M; Romani, Anna M; Packmann, Aaron I

    2016-04-01

    Streams and rivers form dense networks, shape the Earth's surface and, in their sediments, provide an immensely large surface area for microbial growth. Biofilms dominate microbial life in streams and rivers, drive crucial ecosystem processes and contribute substantially to global biogeochemical fluxes. In turn, water flow and related deliveries of nutrients and organic matter to biofilms constitute major constraints on microbial life. In this Review, we describe the ecology and biogeochemistry of stream biofilms and highlight the influence of physical and ecological processes on their structure and function. Recent advances in the study of biofilm ecology may pave the way towards a mechanistic understanding of the effects of climate and environmental change on stream biofilms and the biogeochemistry of stream ecosystems.

  6. Plant host finding by parasitic plants: A new perspective on plant to plant communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark C. Mescher; Justin B. Runyon; Consuelo M. De Moraes

    2006-01-01

    Plants release airborne chemicals that can convey ecologically relevant information to other organisms. These plant volatiles are known to mediate a large array of, often complex, interactions between plants and insects. It has been suggested that plant volatiles may have similar importance in mediating interactions among plant species, but there are few well-...

  7. Ecological concepts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1986-01-01

    This volume contains three critical contributions on the application of modern technology from the ethical point of view. The peaceful use of nuclear power is rejected as a technical error, which is overwhelming humanity. Ethical bases of a preventive technological policy and ecological aims are developed for the 21st century, in economy, technology, politics, and consciousness. (HSCH) [de

  8. Information Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Ellen Tove

    2006-01-01

    in the 1960ties, and chosen here because it integrates cultural and psychological trajectories in a theory of living settings. The pedagogical-didactical paradigm comprises three distinct information ecologies, named after their intended outcome: the problem-setting, the exploration-setting, and the fit...

  9. Pollution and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in the soil-plant system and the sediment-water column around a former Pb/Zn-mining area in NE Morocco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Azhari, Abdellah; Rhoujjati, Ali; El Hachimi, Moulay Laârabi; Ambrosi, Jean-Paul

    2017-10-01

    This study discussed the environmental fate and ecological hazards of heavy metals in the soil-plant system and sediment-water column around the former Pb-Zn mining Zeïda district, in Northeastern Morocco. Spatial distribution, pollution indices, and cluster analysis were applied for assessing Pb, Zn, As, Cu and Cd pollution levels and risks. The geo-accumulation index (I geo ) was determined using two different geochemical backgrounds: i) the commonly used upper crust values, ii) local geochemical background calculated with exploratory data analysis. The soils in the vicinity of the tailings, as well as the sediments downstream of the latter, displayed much higher metal concentrations, I geo, and potential ecology risk coefficient values than other sites, classifying these sites as highly contaminated and severely hazardous. The concentrations of Pb in contaminated sediment samples also exceeded the PEC limits and are expected to cause harmful effects on sediment-dwelling organisms. Based on the comparison with the toxicity limits, the most contaminated plant samples were found around the tailings piles. The metal concentrations in both raw and filtrated water samples were overall below the drinking water standards in samples upstream and downstream of the mining center, indicating that heavy metals levels in the Moulouya River surface waters were not affected by the tailings spill. Cluster analysis suggest that: i) Pb and Zn in sediments were derived from the abandoned tailings and are mainly stored and transported as particle-bound to the bedload, ii) Pb, Zn, and Cu in the soil-plant system were related to the dispersion of tailings materials while As and Cd originated primarily from natural geological background in both the soil-plant and the water-sediment systems. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Human Factors in Streaming Data Analysis: Challenges and Opportunities for Information Visualization: Human Factors in Streaming Data Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dasgupta, Aritra [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA; Arendt, Dustin L. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA; Franklin, Lyndsey R. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA; Wong, Pak Chung [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA; Cook, Kristin A. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA

    2017-09-01

    Real-world systems change continuously and across domains like traffic monitoring, cyber security, etc., such changes occur within short time scales. This leads to a streaming data problem and produces unique challenges for the human in the loop, as analysts have to ingest and make sense of dynamic patterns in real time. In this paper, our goal is to study how the state-of-the-art in streaming data visualization handles these challenges and reflect on the gaps and opportunities. To this end, we have three contributions: i) problem characterization for identifying domain-specific goals and challenges for handling streaming data, ii) a survey and analysis of the state-of-the-art in streaming data visualization research with a focus on the visualization design space, and iii) reflections on the perceptually motivated design challenges and potential research directions for addressing them.

  11. Environmental monitoring and ecological studies program. 1974 annual report for the Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant near Red Wing, Minnesota. Volume I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1975-06-01

    Data are presented from studies on the effects of thermal effluents from the Prairie Island nuclear power plant on water temperature and primary productivity of phytoplankton in the Mississippi River downstream from the site. Results of measurements showed that plant-heated waters had dropped to near normal temperatures at the end of the discharge canal. The size and shape of the thermal plume at Prairie Island were determined. The chemical composition of water samples collected upstream was compared to that of samples collected downstream from the plant. Plankton species and seasonal succession patterns were characterized both at the plant site and downstream from the plant for any evidence of changes resulting from plant operations. The effects of entrainment of plankton in the cooling water system was also studied. Data are included on invertebrates in water samples collected at various locations. (U.S.)

  12. Toward a transport-based analysis of nutrient spiraling and uptake in streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runkel, Robert L.

    2007-01-01

    Nutrient addition experiments are designed to study the cycling of nutrients in stream ecosystems where hydrologic and nonhydrologic processes determine nutrient fate. Because of the importance of hydrologic processes in stream ecosystems, a conceptual model known as nutrient spiraling is frequently employed. A central part of the nutrient spiraling approach is the determination of uptake length (SW), the average distance traveled by dissolved nutrients in the water column before uptake. Although the nutrient spiraling concept has been an invaluable tool in stream ecology, the current practice of estimating uptake length from steady-state nutrient data using linear regression (called here the "SW approach") presents a number of limitations. These limitations are identified by comparing the exponential SW equation with analytical solutions of a stream solute transport model. This comparison indicates that (1) SW, is an aggregate measure of uptake that does not distinguish between main channel and storage zone processes, (2) SW, is an integrated measure of numerous hydrologie and nonhydrologic processes-this process integration may lead to difficulties in interpretation when comparing estimates of SW, and (3) estimates of uptake velocity and areal uptake rate (Vf and U) based on S W, are not independent of system hydrology. Given these findings, a transport-based approach to nutrient spiraling is presented for steady-state and time-series data sets. The transport-based approach for time-series data sets is suggested for future research on nutrient uptake as it provides a number of benefits, including the ability to (1) separately quantify main channel and storage zone uptake, (2) quantify specific hydrologic and nonhydrologic processes using various model parameters (process separation), (3) estimate uptake velocities and areal uptake rates that are independent of hydrologic effects, and (4) use short-term, non-plateau nutrient additions such that the effects of

  13. Response of PCB contamination in stream fish to abatement actions at an industrial site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Southworth, G.R.; Peterson, M.J.; McCarthy, J.F.; Milne, G.

    1995-01-01

    The Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) in Paducah, Kentucky, used large quantities of PCBs in equipment associated with the great electric power requirements of isotopic enrichment of uranium. Historic losses of PCBs in the 1950s and 1960s have left a legacy of contamination at the site. A biological monitoring program implemented in 1987 found PCBs in PGDP effluents and in fish downstream from facility discharges. As a consequence, a fish consumption advisory was posted on Little Bayou Creek by the Commonwealth of Kentucky in 1987, and regulatory discharge limits for PCBs at PGDP were reduced. Monitoring at multiple locations in receiving streams indicated that PGDP discharges were more important than in stream sediment contamination as sources of PCBs to fish. Environmental management and compliance staff at PGDP led an effort to reduce PCB discharges and monitor the effects of those actions. The active discharge of uncontaminated process water to historically PCB-contaminated drainage systems was found to mobilize PCBs into KPDES (Clean Water Act) regulated effluents. Efforts to locate PCB sources within the plant, coupled with improvements in management practices and remedial actions, appear to have been successful in reducing PCB discharges from these sources. Actions included emplacing passive monitors in the plant drainage system to identify this as a chronic source, and consolidating and re-routing effluents to minimize flow through PCB-contaminated channels. As a consequence, PCB contamination in fish in small streams receiving plant discharges decreased 75% over from 1992--1995

  14. Fertilization in Flowering Plants

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Ecology and the Environ- ment, Bengaluru as ... remaining plants, it is an abiotic agent (abiotic pollination), .... tion was slow until the origin of flowering plants and evolution of ..... Although pollination is generally a mutual interaction in a major-.

  15. AN ECOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT OF INVASIVE AND AGRESSIVE PLANT SPECIES IN COASTAL WETLANDS OF THE LAURENTIAN GREAT LAKES: A COMBINED FIELD BASED AND REMOTE SENSING APPROACH

    Science.gov (United States)

    The aquatic plant communities within coastal wetlands of the Laurentian Great Lakes are among the most biologically diverse and productive systems of the world. Coastal wetlands have been especially impacted by landscape conversion and have undergone a marked decline in plant com...

  16. Soil-plant-relationships and ecological forecast of human internal doses from long-lived radionuclides. Dose 'cost' of the transformation of radionuclides bioavailability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kravets, A.P.; Grodzinsky, D.M.

    1999-01-01

    Soil pathway of radionuclides pollution of agricultural production becomes the main one at the recovery stage of postaccidental period. For this stage dynamics of the human foodstuffs cleaning and rate of internal dose due to consumption are results , of the interaction of three main factors, namely, the rate of the decrease of soil contamination, structure of soil use and transformations of bioavailability of radionuclides. Representation of these ideas in quantitative form, documentation and analysis of the main ecological causes that determine the intensity of the radionuclides mobility in the biological cycle is essential increase the accuracy of the long-term forecast of human dose formation and promote the development of adequate strategies for countermeasures. General formal model and practical method of the ecological forecast of human internal doses has been proposed and used for estimation. Refs. 5 (author)

  17. Ecologically Sound Procedural Generation of Natural Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benny Onrust

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Current techniques for the creation and exploration of virtual worlds are largely unable to generate sound natural environments from ecological data and to provide interactive web-based visualizations of such detailed environments. We tackle this challenge and propose a novel framework that (i explores the advantages of landscape maps and ecological statistical data, translating them to an ecologically sound plant distribution, and (ii creates a visually convincing 3D representation of the natural environment suitable for its interactive visualization over the web. Our vegetation model improves techniques from procedural ecosystem generation and neutral landscape modeling. It is able to generate diverse ecological sound plant distributions directly from landscape maps with statistical ecological data. Our visualization model integrates existing level of detail and illumination techniques to achieve interactive frame rates and improve realism. We validated with ecology experts the outcome of our framework using two case studies and concluded that it provides convincing interactive visualizations of large natural environments.

  18. Political ecology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strohm, H.

    1979-01-01

    Using facts and examples, this didactically structures textbook gives an insight into the extent and consequences of the damage to the environment, with the subjects - fundamentals of ecology; - population and food problems; - the energy problem; - economic growth; scarcity of resources, recycling; - ground, water, and air pollution, - city and traffic problems; - work protection and medical care; - political alternatives and 'soft technologies'. The analysis of the political and economic reasons is combined with social and technical alternatives from which demands to be made and measures to be taken can be derived for individuals, citizens' interest groups, political groups and trade unions. Teaching models intend to help teachers to work on specific problems of ecology. (orig.) [de

  19. Terrestrial ecology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1977-01-01

    The main effort of the Terrestrial Ecology Division has been redirected to a comprehensive study of the Espiritu Santo Drainage Basin located in northeastern Puerto Rico. The general objective are to provide baseline ecological data for future environmental assessment studies at the local and regional levels, and to provide through an ecosystem approach data for the development of management alternatives for the wise utilization of energy, water, and land resources. The interrelationships among climate, vegetation, soils, and man, and their combined influence upon the hydrologic cycle will be described and evaluated. Environmental management involves planning and decision making, and both require an adequate data base. At present, little is known about the interworkings of a complete, integrated system such as a drainage basin. A literature survey of the main research areas confirmed that, although many individual ecologically oriented studies have been carried out in a tropical environment, few if any provide the data base required for environmental management. In view of rapidly changing socio-economic conditions and natural resources limitations, management urgently requires data from these systems: physical (climatological), biological, and cultural. This integrated drainage basin study has been designed to provide such data. The scope of this program covers the hydrologic cycle as it is affected by the interactions of the physical, biological, and cultural systems

  20. Abundance-range size relationships in stream vegetation in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riis, Tenna; Sand-Jensen, Kaj

    2002-01-01

    thecultivated lowlands of Denmark, we examined the overall relationship betweenlocal abundance and geographical range size of the vascular flora. We found asignificant positive relationship for all species at all stream localities andan even stronger relationship for ecologically similar species...

  1. Ecological Researches in the Yagnob Valley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Razykov, Z.A.; Yunusov, M.M.; Bezzubov, N.I.; Murtazaev, Kh.; Fajzullaev, B.G.

    2002-01-01

    The article dwells on the resents of the estimation of the ecology surroundings of the Yagnob Valley. The researches included appraisal of radiation background, determination of the amount of heavy and radioactive elements in soil, bottom sedimentations, ashes in plants, water in rivers and wells. Designing on the premise of the researches implemented the ecology surrounding are estimated as propitious man's habitation. (Authors)

  2. Field Ecology Studies in the Rocky Mountains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Philip A.

    1978-01-01

    Describes a six-week field plant ecology course in Montana which is offered by the Botany Department at Southern Illinois University. The goals of the course, how it is taught, and student evaluation are also presented. (HM)

  3. Plant host finding by parasitic plants: a new perspective on plant to plant communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mescher, Mark C; Runyon, Justin B; De Moraes, Consuelo M

    2006-11-01

    Plants release airborne chemicals that can convey ecologically relevant information to other organisms. These plant volatiles are known to mediate a large array of, often complex, interactions between plants and insects. It has been suggested that plant volatiles may have similar importance in mediating interactions among plant species, but there are few well-documented examples of plant-to-plant communication via volatiles, and the ecological significance of such interactions has been much debated. To date, nearly all studies of volatile-mediated interactions among plant species have focused on the reception of herbivore-induced volatiles by neighboring plants. We recently documented volatile effects in another system, demonstrating that the parasitic plant Cuscuta pentagona uses volatile cues to locate its hosts. This finding may broaden the discussion regarding plant-to-plant communication, and suggests that new classes of volatile-meditated interactions among plant species await discovery.

  4. In-stream biogeochemical processes of a temporary river.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tzoraki, Ourania; Nikolaidis, Nikolaos P; Amaxidis, Yorgos; Skoulikidis, Nikolaos Th

    2007-02-15

    A reach at the estuary of Krathis River in Greece was used to assess how in-stream processes alter its hydrologic and biogeochemical regime. Krathis River exhibited high annual flow variability and its transmission losses become significant, especially during the dry months. These transmission losses are enhanced in chemistry due to release of nutrients from river sediments. These fluxes are significant because they correspond to 11% of the dissolved inorganic nitrogen flux of the river. Release of nitrogen species was influenced by temperature, while release of phosphate was not because phosphate levels were below the equilibrium concentration. There is a significant amount of sediments with fine composition that create "hot spot" areas in the river reach. These sediments are mobilized during the first flush events in the fall carrying with them a significant load of nutrient and suspended matter to the coastal zone. The nutrient organic content of sediments was also significant and it was studied in terms of its mineralization capacity. The capacity for mineralization was influenced by soil moisture, exhibiting significant capacity even at moisture levels of 40%. Temporary rivers are sensitive ecosystems, vulnerable to climate changes. In-stream processes play a significant role in altering the hydrology and biogeochemistry of the water and its impacts to the coastal zone.

  5. Graphic Ecologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brook Weld Muller

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This essay describes strategic approaches to graphic representation associated with critical environmental engagement and that build from the idea of works of architecture as stitches in the ecological fabric of the city. It focuses on the building up of partial or fragmented graphics in order to describe inclusive, open-ended possibilities for making architecture that marry rich experience and responsive performance. An aphoristic approach to crafting drawings involves complex layering, conscious absence and the embracing of tension. A self-critical attitude toward the generation of imagery characterized by the notion of ‘loose precision’ may lead to more transformative and environmentally responsive architectures.

  6. Industrial ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, C K

    1992-01-01

    Industrial ecology addresses issues that will impact future production, use, and disposal technologies; proper use of the concept should reduce significantly the resources devoted to potential remediation in the future. This cradle-to-reincarnation production philosophy includes industrial processes that are environmentally sound and products that are environmentally safe during use and economically recyclable after use without adverse impact on the environment or on the net cost to society. This will require an industry-university-government round table to set the strategy and agenda for progress. PMID:11607254

  7. Annual report of ecological research at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1984-09-01

    This report summarizes research conducted at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) during the annual period ending August 1, 1984. SREL is a regional research facility at the Savannah River Plant operated by the University of Georgia through a contract with the Department of Energy. It is part of the University of Georgia's Institute of Ecology. The overall goal of the research is to develop an understanding of the impact of various energy technologies and management practices on the ecosystems of the southeastern United States. SREL research is conducted by interdisciplinary research teams organized under three major divisions: (1) Biogeochemical Ecology, (2) Wetlands Ecology, and (3) Stress and Wildlife Ecology

  8. Relevance of various nitrogen fixing microorganisms in ecology and plant productivity as a basis for evaluating their damage by environmental chemicals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jagnow, G

    1981-01-01

    To evaluate detrimental side-effects of environmental chemicals on the biological N/sub 2/-fixation the relative importance of the N/sub 2/-fixation of legume and non-legume root nodules, of symbiotic and free living blue-green algae, of aerobic and facultatively anaerobic rhizosphere bacteria and of anaerobic bacteria is discussed on the basis of their fixation rate and their contribution to the conservation of ecosystems. From an agricultural and ecological point of view the symbiotic N/sub 2/-fixation of legumes and non-legumes takes the first place, being followed by that of blue-green algae and rhizosphere bacteria. Compared with these, the strictly anaerobic N/sub 2/-fixation has only a minor importance. Variable side-effects of herbicides on N/sub 2/-fixing bacteria are cited to stress the necessity of testing representatives of various ecological groups. Suitable test systems are proposed with soybeans, white clover, Rhizobium cultures, N/sub 2/-fixing blue-green algae and with Azospirillum species.

  9. Ecology and Education in Landscape Architecture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Miller

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available Landscape architects engage in a wide range of projects relating to environmental quality. Indeed, the goals of preserving biodiversity and maintaining the integrity of ecological function is implicit in the charters of several of the discipline's professional organisations. Nonetheless, there is widespread opinion that much of the potential of design to contribute to environmental solutions goes unrealised. There are numerous explanations that purport to account for this situation; in this paper, we focus on one, the assertion that degree programmes in landscape architecture generally do a poor job of preparing students for practice grounded in ecological awareness. We examined the validity of this assertion by quantifying the amount and form of ecology-based coursework required of landscape architecture students. We surveyed the curricula of all 63 accredited, first-professional degree programmes in North America (28 offering a BLA, 17 offering an MLA and 18 offering both. We focused on required courses that could be categorised as emphasising information-based ecology, ecology/design integration, or plant identification and ecology. We recorded the level (introductory or advanced and number of credit hours for each course, and the total number of credits required for graduation in each programme. Thirty-seven undergraduate programmes required an introductory information-based ecology course. Only 13 required an advanced class in ecology and, of these, only three required coursework in landscape ecology. All of the undergraduate programmes except one required a plant class. Ten of the graduate programmes required an information-based class, an advanced, except one. Six required a course in landscape ecology. Eight required at least one ecology-design integration course, yet had no requirements regarding information-based courses. Thirty graduate programmes required at least one plant course. We discuss the implications of these results and

  10. Plant Biology Science Projects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hershey, David R.

    This book contains science projects about seed plants that deal with plant physiology, plant ecology, and plant agriculture. Each of the projects includes a step-by-step experiment followed by suggestions for further investigations. Chapters include: (1) "Bean Seed Imbibition"; (2) "Germination Percentages of Different Types of Seeds"; (3)…

  11. Metal concentrations in stream biofilm and sediments and their potential to explain biofilm microbial community structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ancion, Pierre-Yves; Lear, Gavin; Dopheide, Andrew; Lewis, Gillian D.

    2013-01-01

    Concentrations of metals associated with sediments have traditionally been analysed to assess the extent of heavy metal contamination in freshwater environments. Stream biofilms present an alternative medium for this assessment which may be more relevant to the risk incurred by stream ecosystems as they are intensively grazed by aquatic organisms at a higher trophic level. Therefore, we investigated zinc, copper and lead concentrations in biofilms and sediments of 23 stream sites variously impacted by urbanisation. Simultaneously, biofilm bacterial and ciliate protozoan community structure was analysed by Automated Ribosomal Intergenic Spacer Analysis and Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism, respectively. Statistical analysis revealed that biofilm associated metals explained a greater proportion of the variations observed in bacterial and ciliate communities than did sediment associated-metals. This study suggests that the analysis of metal concentrations in biofilms provide a good assessment of detrimental effects of metal contaminants on aquatic biota. - Highlights: ► Zn, Cu and Pb concentrations in biofilm and sediments from 23 streams were assessed. ► Bacteria and ciliate protozoa were simultaneously used as biological indicators. ► Zn and Cu were generally enriched in biofilm compared to sediments. ► Metals in biofilm provide a useful assessment of freshwater ecosystem contamination. ► Results highlight the likely ecological importance of biofilm associated metals. - Metal concentrations in stream biofilms provide a good assessment of the effects of trace metal contaminants on freshwater ecosystems.

  12. SPEAR indicates pesticide effects in streams - Comparative use of species- and family-level biomonitoring data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beketov, M.A.; Foit, K.; Schaefer, R.B.; Schriever, C.A.; Sacchi, A.; Capri, E.; Biggs, J.; Wells, C.; Liess, M.

    2009-01-01

    To detect effects of pesticides on non-target freshwater organisms the Species at risk (SPEAR pesticides ) bioindicator based on biological traits was previously developed and successfully validated over different biogeographical regions of Europe using species-level data on stream invertebrates. Since many freshwater biomonitoring programmes have family-level taxonomic resolution we tested the applicability of SPEAR pesticides with family-level biomonitoring data to indicate pesticide effects in streams (i.e. insecticide toxicity of pesticides). The study showed that the explanatory power of the family-level SPEAR(fm) pesticides is not significantly lower than the species-level index. The results suggest that the family-level SPEAR(fm) pesticides is a sensitive, cost-effective, and potentially European-wide bioindicator of pesticide contamination in flowing waters. Class boundaries for SPEAR pesticides according to EU Water Framework Directive are defined to contribute to the assessment of ecological status of water bodies. - We show that SPEAR pesticides can be based on family-level biomonitoring data and is applicable for large-scale monitoring programmes to detect and quantify pesticide contamination.

  13. Turbulent particle transport in streams: can exponential settling be reconciled with fluid mechanics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNair, James N; Newbold, J Denis

    2012-05-07

    Most ecological studies of particle transport in streams that focus on fine particulate organic matter or benthic invertebrates use the Exponential Settling Model (ESM) to characterize the longitudinal pattern of particle settling on the bed. The ESM predicts that if particles are released into a stream, the proportion that have not yet settled will decline exponentially with transport time or distance and will be independent of the release elevation above the bed. To date, no credible basis in fluid mechanics has been established for this model, nor has it been rigorously tested against more-mechanistic alternative models. One alternative is the Local Exchange Model (LEM), which is a stochastic advection-diffusion model that includes both longitudinal and vertical spatial dimensions and is based on classical fluid mechanics. The LEM predicts that particle settling will be non-exponential in the near field but will become exponential in the far field, providing a new theoretical justification for far-field exponential settling that is based on plausible fluid mechanics. We review properties of the ESM and LEM and compare these with available empirical evidence. Most evidence supports the prediction of both models that settling will be exponential in the far field but contradicts the ESM's prediction that a single exponential distribution will hold for all transport times and distances. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Reduction of sexual dimorphism in stream-resident forms of three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitano, J.; Mori, S.; Peichel, C. L.

    2013-01-01

    Sexual dimorphism in geometric body shape and external morphology was compared between marine and stream-resident forms of three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus collected from North America and Japan. Some aspects of sexual dimorphism were shared between ecotypes: males had larger heads than females with no significant effect of ecotype on the magnitude of sexual dimorphism. By contrast, a significant sex-by-ecotype interaction was found for body depth. Males tended to have deeper bodies than females in both forms, but the magnitude of sexual dimorphism was reduced in stream-resident forms. Although females were generally larger in standard length and had larger pelvic girdles, significant sexual dimorphism in these traits was not consistently found across populations or ecotypes. These results suggest that some aspects of sexual dimorphism were shared between ecotypes, while others were unique to each population. The results further suggest that ecology may influence the evolution of sexual dimorphism in some external morphological traits, such as body depth. PMID:22220894

  15. Altitudinal patterns of diversity and functional traits of metabolically active microorganisms in stream biofilms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilhelm, Linda; Besemer, Katharina; Fragner, Lena; Peter, Hannes; Weckwerth, Wolfram; Battin, Tom J

    2015-01-01

    Resources structure ecological communities and potentially link biodiversity to energy flow. It is commonly believed that functional traits (generalists versus specialists) involved in the exploitation of resources depend on resource availability and environmental fluctuations. The longitudinal nature of stream ecosystems provides changing resources to stream biota with yet unknown effects on microbial functional traits and community structure. We investigated the impact of autochthonous (algal extract) and allochthonous (spruce extract) resources, as they change along alpine streams from above to below the treeline, on microbial diversity, community composition and functions of benthic biofilms. Combining bromodeoxyuridine labelling and 454 pyrosequencing, we showed that diversity was lower upstream than downstream of the treeline and that community composition changed along the altitudinal gradient. We also found that, especially for allochthonous resources, specialisation by biofilm bacteria increased along that same gradient. Our results suggest that in streams below the treeline biofilm diversity, specialisation and functioning are associated with increasing niche differentiation as potentially modulated by divers allochthonous and autochthonous constituents contributing to resources. These findings expand our current understanding on biofilm structure and function in alpine streams. PMID:25978543

  16. SPEAR indicates pesticide effects in streams - Comparative use of species- and family-level biomonitoring data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beketov, M.A., E-mail: mikhail.beketov@ufz.d [UFZ - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Department System Ecotoxicology, Permoserstrasse 15, D-04318 Leipzig (Germany); Foit, K.; Schaefer, R.B.; Schriever, C.A. [UFZ - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Department System Ecotoxicology, Permoserstrasse 15, D-04318 Leipzig (Germany); Sacchi, A.; Capri, E. [Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Istituto di Chimica Agraria ed Ambientale, Piacenza (Italy); Biggs, J. [Pond Conservation, c/o Oxford Brookes University, Headington (United Kingdom); Wells, C. [Environment Agency of England and Wales, Science Department, Bristol (United Kingdom); Liess, M. [UFZ - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Department System Ecotoxicology, Permoserstrasse 15, D-04318 Leipzig (Germany)

    2009-06-15

    To detect effects of pesticides on non-target freshwater organisms the Species at risk (SPEAR{sub pesticides}) bioindicator based on biological traits was previously developed and successfully validated over different biogeographical regions of Europe using species-level data on stream invertebrates. Since many freshwater biomonitoring programmes have family-level taxonomic resolution we tested the applicability of SPEAR{sub pesticides} with family-level biomonitoring data to indicate pesticide effects in streams (i.e. insecticide toxicity of pesticides). The study showed that the explanatory power of the family-level SPEAR(fm){sub pesticides} is not significantly lower than the species-level index. The results suggest that the family-level SPEAR(fm){sub pesticides} is a sensitive, cost-effective, and potentially European-wide bioindicator of pesticide contamination in flowing waters. Class boundaries for SPEAR{sub pesticides} according to EU Water Framework Directive are defined to contribute to the assessment of ecological status of water bodies. - We show that SPEAR{sub pesticides} can be based on family-level biomonitoring data and is applicable for large-scale monitoring programmes to detect and