WorldWideScience

Sample records for invasive grass litter

  1. Plant litter effects on soil nutrient availability and vegetation dynamics: changes that occur when annual grasses invade shrub-steppe communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheel Bansal; Roger L. Sheley; Bob Blank; Edward A. Vasquez

    2014-01-01

    Changes in the quantity and quality of plant litter occur in many ecosystems as they are invaded by exotic species, which impact soil nutrient cycling and plant community composition. Such changes in sagebrush-steppe communities are occurring with invasion of annual grasses (AG) into a perennial grass (PG) dominated system. We conducted a 5-year litter manipulation...

  2. Effects of prescribed burning and litter type on litter decomposition and nutrient release in mixed-grass prairie in Eastern Montana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fire can affect litter decomposition and carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics. Here, we examined the effect of summer fire and three litter types on litter decomposition and litter C and N dynamics in a northern mixed-grass prairie over a 24 month period starting ca. 14 months after fire. Over all...

  3. Effect of ponderosa pine needle litter on grass seedling survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burt R. McConnell; Justin G. Smith

    1971-01-01

    Hard fescue survival rates were followed for 6 years on four different pine needle treatment plots. Needle litter had a significant effect on initial survival of fescue seedlings, but subsequent losses undoubtedly resulted from the interaction of many factors.

  4. Toxicity of iron oxide nanoparticles to grass litter decomposition in a sandy soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rashid, Muhammad Imtiaz; Shahzad, Tanvir; Shahid, Muhammad; Imran, Muhammad; Dhavamani, Jeyakumar; Ismail, Iqbal M. I.; Basahi, Jalal M.; Almeelbi, Talal

    2017-02-01

    We examined time-dependent effect of iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) at a rate of 2000 mg kg-1 soil on Cynodon dactylon litter (3 g kg-1) decomposition in an arid sandy soil. Overall, heterotrophic cultivable bacterial and fungal colonies, and microbial biomass carbon were significantly decreased in litter-amended soil by the application of nanoparticles after 90 and 180 days of incubation. Time dependent effect of nanoparticles was significant for microbial biomass in litter-amended soil where nanoparticles decreased this variable from 27% after 90 days to 49% after 180 days. IONPs decreased CO2 emission by 28 and 30% from litter-amended soil after 90 and 180 days, respectively. These observations indicated that time-dependent effect was not significant on grass-litter carbon mineralization efficiency. Alternatively, nanoparticles application significantly reduced mineral nitrogen content in litter-amended soil in both time intervals. Therefore, nitrogen mineralization efficiency was decreased to 60% after 180 days compared to that after 90 days in nanoparticles grass-litter amended soil. These effects can be explained by the presence of labile Fe in microbial biomass after 180 days in nanoparticles amendment. Hence, our results suggest that toxicity of IONPs to soil functioning should consider before recommending their use in agro-ecosystems.

  5. Invasive grasses change landscape structure and fire behavior in Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisa M. Ellsworth; Creighton M. Litton; Alexander P. Dale; Tomoaki Miura

    2014-01-01

    How does potential fire behavior differ in grass-invaded non-native forests vs open grasslands? How has land cover changed from 1950–2011 along two grassland/forest ecotones in Hawaii with repeated fires? A study on non-native forest with invasive grass understory and invasive grassland (Megathyrsus maximus) ecosystems on Oahu, Hawaii, USA was...

  6. Litter drives ecosystem and plant community changes in cattail invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrer, Emily C; Goldberg, Deborah E

    2009-03-01

    Invaded systems are commonly associated with a change in ecosystem processes and a decline in native species diversity; however, many different causal pathways linking invasion, ecosystem change, and native species decline could produce this pattern. The initial driver of environmental change may be anthropogenic, or it may be the invader itself; and the mechanism behind native species decline may be the human-induced environmental change, competition from the invader, or invader-induced environmental change (non-trophic effects). We examined applicability of each of these alternate pathways in Great Lakes coastal marshes invaded by hybrid cattail (Typha x glauca). In a survey including transects in three marshes, we found that T. x glauca was associated with locally high soil nutrients, low light, and large amounts of litter, and that native diversity was highest in areas of shallow litter depth. We tested whether live T. x glauca plants or their litter induced changes in the environment and in diversity with a live plant and litter transplant experiment. After one year, Typha litter increased soil NH4+ and N mineralization twofold, lowered light levels, and decreased the abundance and diversity of native plants, while live Typha plants had no effect on the environment or on native plants. This suggests that T. x glauca, through its litter production, can cause the changes in ecosystem processes that we commonly attribute to anthropogenic nutrient loading and that T. x glauca does not displace native species through competition for resources, but rather affects them non-trophically through its litter. Moreover, because T. x glauca plants were taller when grown with their own litter, we suggest that this invader may produce positive feedbacks and change the environment in ways that benefit itself and may promote its own invasion.

  7. Indirect effects of an invasive annual grass on seed fates of two native perennial grass species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Susan E; Merrill, Katherine T; Allen, Phil S; Beckstead, Julie; Norte, Anna S

    2014-04-01

    Invasive plants exhibit both direct and indirect negative effects on recruitment of natives following invasion. We examined indirect effects of the invader Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass) on seed fates of two native grass species, Elymus elymoides and Pseudoroegneria spicata, by removing B. tectorum and by adding inoculum of the shared seed pathogen Pyrenophora semeniperda in factorial experiments at xeric and mesic field sites. We also included a supplemental watering treatment to increase emergence and also the potential for pathogen escape. We recorded emergence and survival of native seedlings and also determined the fate of unemerged seeds. At the xeric site, Pyrenophora-caused mortality was high (34%), and effects of other pathogens and failed emergence of germinants were smaller. Cheatgrass removal negatively affected both emergence (35 vs. 25%) and spring survival (69 vs. 42%). Pyrenophora-caused seed mortality increased with inoculum augmentation for both species (22 vs. 47% overall), but emergence was negatively impacted only for P. spicata (20 vs. 34%). At the mesic site, Pyrenophora-caused mortality was low (6%). Cheatgrass removal doubled emergence (26 vs. 14%). Seed mortality increased significantly with inoculum augmentation for P. spicata (12 vs. 5%) but not E. elymoides, while emergence was not significantly affected in either species. A large fraction of seeds produced germinants that failed to emerge (37%), while another large fraction (35%) was killed by other pathogens. We conclude that facilitation by cheatgrass at the xeric site but interference at the mesic site was probably mediated through litter effects that could be ameliorative or suppressive. Apparent competition between cheatgrass and native grasses could occur through Pyrenophora, especially in a xeric environment, but effects were weak or absent at emergence. This was probably because Pyrenophora attacks the same slow-germinating fraction that is subject to pre-emergence mortality from

  8. Effect of petroleum on decomposition of shrub-grass litters in soil in Northern Shaanxi of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiaoxi; Liu, Zengwen; Yu, Qi; Luc, Nhu Trung; Bing, Yuanhao; Zhu, Bochao; Wang, Wenxuan

    2015-07-01

    The impacts of petroleum contamination on the litter decomposition of shrub-grass land would directly influence nutrient cycling, and the stability and function of ecosystem. Ten common shrub and grass species from Yujiaping oil deposits were studied. Litters from these species were placed into litterbags and buried in petroleum-contaminated soil with 3 levels of contamination (slight, moderate and serious pollution with petroleum concentrations of 15, 30 and 45 g/kg, respectively). A decomposition experiment was then conducted in the lab to investigate the impacts of petroleum contamination on litter decomposition rates. Slight pollution did not inhibit the decomposition of any litters and significantly promoted the litter decomposition of Hippophae rhamnoides, Caragana korshinskii, Amorpha fruticosa, Ziziphus jujuba var. spinosa, Periploca sepium, Medicago sativa and Bothriochloa ischaemum. Moderate pollution significantly inhibited litter decomposition of M. sativa, Coronilla varia, Artemisia vestita and Trrifolium repens and significantly promoted the litter decomposition of C. korshinskii, Z. jujuba var. spinosa and P. sepium. Serious pollution significantly inhibited the litter decomposition of H. rhamnoides, A. fruticosa, B. ischaemum and A. vestita and significantly promoted the litter decomposition of Z. jujuba var. spinosa, P. sepium and M. sativa. In addition, the impacts of petroleum contamination did not exhibit a uniform increase or decrease as petroleum concentration increased. Inhibitory effects of petroleum on litter decomposition may hinder the substance cycling and result in the degradation of plant communities in contaminated areas. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. Habitat structure modified by an invasive grass enhances inundation withstanding in a salt-marsh wolf spider

    OpenAIRE

    Pétillon, J.; Lambeets, K.; Montaigne, W.; Maelfait, J.-P.; Bonte, D.

    2010-01-01

    Vegetation and underground structures are known to influence flood avoidance and flood resistance in invertebrates. In bimonthly-flooded European salt marshes, recent invasions by the nitrophilous grass Elymus athericus strongly modified usual habitat structure, notably by the production of a deep litter layer. Consequently, invaded habitats provide more interstitial spaces that may act as a refuge during flood events. By using both controlled and field designs, we tested whether invaded habi...

  10. Climate change and the invasion of California by grasses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandel, Brody Steven; Dangremond, Emily

    2012-01-01

    Over the next century, changes in the global climate are expected to have major consequences for plant communities, possibly including the exacerbation of species invasions. We evaluated this possibility in the grass flora of California, which is economically and ecologically important and heavily...... invaded. We used a novel, trait-based approach involving two components: identifying differences in trait composition between native and exotic components of the grass flora and evaluating contemporary trait–climate relationships across the state. The combination of trait–climate relationships and trait...

  11. Established native perennial grasses out-compete an invasive annual grass regardless of soil water and nutrient availability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher M. McGlone; Carolyn Hull Sieg; Thomas E. Kolb; Ty Nietupsky

    2012-01-01

    Competition and resource availability influence invasions into native perennial grasslands by nonnative annual grasses such as Bromus tectorum. In two greenhouse experiments we examined the influence of competition, water availability, and elevated nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) availability on growth and reproduction of the invasive annual grass B. tectorum and two...

  12. Common mycelial networks impact competition in an invasive grass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Workman, Rachael E; Cruzan, Mitchell B

    2016-06-01

    Mycorrhizal hyphal complexes can connect multiple host plants to form common mycelial networks (CMNs) that may affect plant competitive outcomes and community composition through differential resource allocation. The impacts of CMN interactions on invasive plants are not well understood and could be crucial to the understanding of invasive plant establishment and success. We grew the invasive grass Brachypodium sylvaticum in intra- and interspecific pairings with native grass Bromus vulgaris in a greenhouse and controlled for the effects of CMN and root interactions by manipulating the belowground separation between competitors. Comparison of plant growth in pots that allowed CMN interactions and excluded root competition and vice versa, or both, allowed us to delineate the effects of network formation and root competition on invasive plant establishment and performance. Brachypodium sylvaticum grown in pots allowing for only hyphal interactions, but no root competition, displayed superior growth compared with conspecifics in other treatments. Invasive performance was poorest when pairs were not separated by a barrier. Shoot nitrogen content in B. sylvaticum was higher in mycorrhizal plants only when connections were allowed between competitors. Our results indicate that the presence of CMN networks can have positive effects on B. sylvaticum establishment and nutrient status, which may affect plant competition and invasion success. © 2016 Botanical Society of America.

  13. Energetic Materials Effects on Essential Soil Processes: Decomposition of Orchard Grass (Dactylis glomerata) Litter in Soil Contaminated with Energetic Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-02-01

    availabilities of their respective food sources (bacteria and fungi ), were also unaffected-or-increasing in soil with CL-20 treatments. This is...ENERGETIC MATERIALS EFFECTS ON ESSENTIAL SOIL PROCESSES: DECOMPOSITION OF ORCHARD...GRASS (DACTYLIS GLOMERATA) LITTER IN SOIL CONTAMINATED WITH ENERGETIC MATERIALS ECBC-TR-1199 Roman G. Kuperman Ronald T. Checkai Michael Simini

  14. Genotypic diversity of an invasive plant species promotes litter decomposition and associated processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiao-Yan; Miao, Yuan; Yu, Shuo; Chen, Xiao-Yong; Schmid, Bernhard

    2014-03-01

    Following studies that showed negative effects of species loss on ecosystem functioning, newer studies have started to investigate if similar consequences could result from reductions of genetic diversity within species. We tested the influence of genotypic richness and dissimilarity (plots containing one, three, six or 12 genotypes) in stands of the invasive plant Solidago canadensis in China on the decomposition of its leaf litter and associated soil animals over five monthly time intervals. We found that the logarithm of genotypic richness was positively linearly related to mass loss of C, N and P from the litter and to richness and abundance of soil animals on the litter samples. The mixing proportion of litter from two sites, but not genotypic dissimilarity of mixtures, had additional effects on measured variables. The litter diversity effects on soil animals were particularly strong under the most stressful conditions of hot weather in July: at this time richness and abundance of soil animals were higher in 12-genotype litter mixtures than even in the highest corresponding one-genotype litter. The litter diversity effects on decomposition were in part mediated by soil animals: the abundance of Acarina, when used as covariate in the analysis, fully explained the litter diversity effects on mass loss of N and P. Overall, our study shows that high genotypic richness of S. canadensis leaf litter positively affects richness and abundance of soil animals, which in turn accelerate litter decomposition and P release from litter.

  15. Grasses as invasive plants in South Africa revisited: Patterns, pathways and management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vernon Visser

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: In many countries around the world, the most damaging invasive plant species are grasses. However, the status of grass invasions in South Africa has not been documented recently. Objectives: To update Sue Milton’s 2004 review of grasses as invasive alien plants in South Africa, provide the first detailed species level inventory of alien grasses in South Africa and assess the invasion dynamics and management of the group. Method: We compiled the most comprehensive inventory of alien grasses in South Africa to date using recorded occurrences of alien grasses in the country from various literature and database sources. Using historical literature, we reviewed past efforts to introduce alien grasses into South Africa. We sourced information on the origins, uses, distributions and minimum residence times to investigate pathways and patterns of spatial extent. We identified alien grasses in South Africa that are having environmental and economic impacts and determined whether management options have been identified, and legislation created, for these species. Results: There are at least 256 alien grass species in the country, 37 of which have become invasive. Alien grass species richness increased most dramatically from the late 1800s to about 1940. Alien grass species that are not naturalised or invasive have much shorter residence times than those that have naturalised or become invasive. Most grasses were probably introduced for forage purposes, and a large number of alien grass species were trialled at pasture research stations. A large number of alien grass species in South Africa are of Eurasian origin, although more recent introductions include species from elsewhere in Africa and from Australasia. Alien grasses are most prevalent in the south-west of the country, and the Fynbos Biome has the most alien grasses and the most widespread species. We identified 11 species that have recorded environmental and economic impacts in the

  16. Soil modification by invasive plants: Effects on native and invasive species of mixed-grass prairies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, N.R.; Larson, D.L.; Huerd, S.C.

    2008-01-01

    Invasive plants are capable of modifying attributes of soil to facilitate further invasion by conspecifics and other invasive species. We assessed this capability in three important plant invaders of grasslands in the Great Plains region of North America: leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula), smooth brome (Bromus inermis) and crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum). In a glasshouse, these three invasives or a group of native species were grown separately through three cycles of growth and soil conditioning in both steam-pasteurized and non-pasteurized soils, after which we assessed seedling growth in these soils. Two of the three invasive species, Bromus and Agropyron, exhibited significant self-facilitation via soil modification. Bromus and Agropyron also had significant facilitative effects on other invasives via soil modification, while Euphorbia had significant antagonistic effects on the other invasives. Both Agropyron and Euphorbia consistently suppressed growth of two of three native forbs, while three native grasses were generally less affected. Almost all intra- and interspecific effects of invasive soil conditioning were dependent upon presence of soil biota from field sites where these species were successful invaders. Overall, these results suggest that that invasive modification of soil microbiota can facilitate plant invasion directly or via 'cross-facilitation' of other invasive species, and moreover has potential to impede restoration of native communities after removal of an invasive species. However, certain native species that are relatively insensitive to altered soil biota (as we observed in the case of the forb Linum lewisii and the native grasses), may be valuable as 'nurse'species in restoration efforts. ?? 2007 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  17. Ecophysiological responses of native and invasive grasses to simulated warming and drought

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravi, S.; Law, D. J.; Wiede, A.; Barron-Gafford, G. A.; Breshears, D. D.; Dontsova, K.; Huxman, T. E.

    2011-12-01

    Climate models predict that many arid regions around the world - including the North American deserts - may become affected more frequently by recurrent droughts. At the same time, these regions are experiencing rapid vegetation transformations such as invasion by exotic grasses. Thus, understanding the ecophysiological processes accompanying exotic grass invasion in the context of rising temperatures and recurrent droughts is fundamental to global change research. Under ambient and warmer (+ 4° C) conditions inside the Biosphere 2 facility, we compared the ecophysiological responses (e.g. photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, pre-dawn leaf water potential, light & CO2 response functions, biomass) of a native grass - Heteropogan contortus (Tangle head) and an invasive grass - Pennisetum ciliare (Buffel grass) growing in single and mixed communities. Further, we monitored the physiological responses and mortality of these plant communities under moisture stress conditions, simulating a global change-type-drought. The results indicate that the predicted warming scenarios may enhance the invasibility of desert landscapes by exotic grasses. In this study, buffel grass assimilated more CO2 per unit leaf area and out-competed native grasses more efficiently in a warmer environment. However, scenarios involving a combination of drought and warming proved disastrous to both the native and invasive grasses, with drought-induced grass mortality occurring at much shorter time scales under warmer conditions.

  18. VAM populations in relation to grass invasion associated with forest decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vosatka, M; Cudlin, P; Mejstrik, V

    1991-01-01

    Spruce stands in Northern Bohemia forests, damaged to various degrees by industrial pollution, have shown establishment of grass cover following tree defoliation. Populations of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) fungi were studied under this grass cover in four permanent plots with spruce under different levels of pollution stress. Soil and root samples were collected in April and June within each plot as follows: (1) sites without grass, (2) sites with initial stages of grass invasion, and (3) sites with fully developed grass cover. In all plots, the highest number of propagules were recovered from samples taken from sites having full grass cover. Mycorrhizal infection of grass was highest in the plot with the severest pollution damage and lowest in the least damaged plot. The development of grass cover and VAM infection of grass increased with tree defoliation caused by air pollution.

  19. Anthropogenic marine litter composition in coastal areas may be a predictor of potentially invasive rafting fauna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine Rech

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic plastic pollution is a global problem. In the marine environment, one of its less studied effects is the transport of attached biota, which might lead to introductions of non-native species in new areas or aid in habitat expansions of invasive species. The goal of the present work was to assess if the material composition of beached anthropogenic litter is indicative of the rafting fauna in a coastal area and could thus be used as a simple and cost-efficient tool for risk assessment in the future. Beached anthropogenic litter and attached biota along the 200 km coastline of Asturias, central Bay of Biscay, Spain, were analysed. The macrobiotic community attached to fouled litter items was identified using genetic barcoding combined with visual taxonomic analysis, and compared between hard plastics, foams, other plastics and non-plastic items. On the other hand, the material composition of beached litter was analysed in a standardized area on each beach. From these two datasets, the expected frequency of several rafting taxa was calculated for the coastal area and compared to the actually observed frequencies. The results showed that plastics were the most abundant type of beached litter. Litter accumulation was likely driven by coastal sources (industry, ports and river/sewage inputs and transported by near-shore currents. Rafting vectors were almost exclusively made up of plastics and could mainly be attributed to fishing activity and leisure/ household. We identified a variety of rafting biota, including species of goose barnacles, acorn barnacles, bivalves, gastropods, polychaetes and bryozoan, and hydrozoan colonies attached to stranded litter. Several of these species were non-native and invasive, such as the giant Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas and the Australian barnacle (Austrominius modestus. The composition of attached fauna varied strongly between litter items of different materials. Plastics, except for foam, had a

  20. Anthropogenic marine litter composition in coastal areas may be a predictor of potentially invasive rafting fauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borrell Pichs, Yaisel J.; García-Vazquez, Eva

    2018-01-01

    Anthropogenic plastic pollution is a global problem. In the marine environment, one of its less studied effects is the transport of attached biota, which might lead to introductions of non-native species in new areas or aid in habitat expansions of invasive species. The goal of the present work was to assess if the material composition of beached anthropogenic litter is indicative of the rafting fauna in a coastal area and could thus be used as a simple and cost-efficient tool for risk assessment in the future. Beached anthropogenic litter and attached biota along the 200 km coastline of Asturias, central Bay of Biscay, Spain, were analysed. The macrobiotic community attached to fouled litter items was identified using genetic barcoding combined with visual taxonomic analysis, and compared between hard plastics, foams, other plastics and non-plastic items. On the other hand, the material composition of beached litter was analysed in a standardized area on each beach. From these two datasets, the expected frequency of several rafting taxa was calculated for the coastal area and compared to the actually observed frequencies. The results showed that plastics were the most abundant type of beached litter. Litter accumulation was likely driven by coastal sources (industry, ports) and river/sewage inputs and transported by near-shore currents. Rafting vectors were almost exclusively made up of plastics and could mainly be attributed to fishing activity and leisure/ household. We identified a variety of rafting biota, including species of goose barnacles, acorn barnacles, bivalves, gastropods, polychaetes and bryozoan, and hydrozoan colonies attached to stranded litter. Several of these species were non-native and invasive, such as the giant Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) and the Australian barnacle (Austrominius modestus). The composition of attached fauna varied strongly between litter items of different materials. Plastics, except for foam, had a much more diverse

  1. Anthropogenic marine litter composition in coastal areas may be a predictor of potentially invasive rafting fauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rech, Sabine; Borrell Pichs, Yaisel J; García-Vazquez, Eva

    2018-01-01

    Anthropogenic plastic pollution is a global problem. In the marine environment, one of its less studied effects is the transport of attached biota, which might lead to introductions of non-native species in new areas or aid in habitat expansions of invasive species. The goal of the present work was to assess if the material composition of beached anthropogenic litter is indicative of the rafting fauna in a coastal area and could thus be used as a simple and cost-efficient tool for risk assessment in the future. Beached anthropogenic litter and attached biota along the 200 km coastline of Asturias, central Bay of Biscay, Spain, were analysed. The macrobiotic community attached to fouled litter items was identified using genetic barcoding combined with visual taxonomic analysis, and compared between hard plastics, foams, other plastics and non-plastic items. On the other hand, the material composition of beached litter was analysed in a standardized area on each beach. From these two datasets, the expected frequency of several rafting taxa was calculated for the coastal area and compared to the actually observed frequencies. The results showed that plastics were the most abundant type of beached litter. Litter accumulation was likely driven by coastal sources (industry, ports) and river/sewage inputs and transported by near-shore currents. Rafting vectors were almost exclusively made up of plastics and could mainly be attributed to fishing activity and leisure/ household. We identified a variety of rafting biota, including species of goose barnacles, acorn barnacles, bivalves, gastropods, polychaetes and bryozoan, and hydrozoan colonies attached to stranded litter. Several of these species were non-native and invasive, such as the giant Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) and the Australian barnacle (Austrominius modestus). The composition of attached fauna varied strongly between litter items of different materials. Plastics, except for foam, had a much more diverse

  2. Faster N Release, but Not C Loss, From Leaf Litter of Invasives Compared to Native Species in Mediterranean Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guido Incerti

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Plant invasions can have relevant impacts on biogeochemical cycles, whose extent, in Mediterranean ecosystems, have not yet been systematically assessed comparing litter carbon (C and nitrogen (N dynamics between invasive plants and native communities. We carried out a 1-year litterbag experiment in 4 different plant communities (grassland, sand dune, riparian and mixed forests on 8 invasives and 24 autochthonous plant species, used as control. Plant litter was characterized for mass loss, N release, proximate lignin and litter chemistry by 13C CPMAS NMR. Native and invasive species showed significant differences in litter chemical traits, with invaders generally showing higher N concentration and lower lignin/N ratio. Mass loss data revealed no consistent differences between native and invasive species, although some woody and vine invaders showed exceptionally high decomposition rate. In contrast, N release rate from litter was faster for invasive plants compared to native species. N concentration, lignin content and relative abundance of methoxyl and N-alkyl C region from 13C CPMAS NMR spectra were the parameters that better explained mass loss and N mineralization rates. Our findings demonstrate that during litter decomposition invasive species litter has no different decomposition rates but greater N release rate compared to natives. Accordingly, invasives are expected to affect N cycle in Mediterranean plant communities, possibly promoting a shift of plant assemblages.

  3. Litter Fall and Its Decomposition in Sapium sebiferum Roxb.: An Invasive Tree Species in Western Himalaya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vikrant Jaryan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Recognizing that high litter fall and its rapid decomposition are key traits of invasive species, litter fall and its decay in Sapium sebiferum Roxb. were studied in Palampur. For this, litter traps of dimension 50 × 50 × 50 cm3 were placed in under-canopy and canopy gap of the species. Litter fall was monitored monthly and segregated into different components. For litter decay studies, litter bags of dimension 25 × 20 cm2 with a mesh size 2 mm were used and the same were analyzed on a fortnightly basis. Litter fall in both under-canopy and canopy gap was highest in November (1.16 Mg ha−1 y−1 in under-canopy and 0.38 Mg ha−1 y−1 in canopy gap and lowest during March. Litter production in under-canopy and canopy gap was 4.04 Mg ha−1 y−1 and 1.87 Mg ha−1 y−1, respectively. These values are comparable to sal forest (1.7 t C ha−1 y−1, chir pine-mixed forest (2.1 t C ha−1 y−1, and mixed oak-conifer forest (2.8 t C ha−1 y−1 of the Western Himalaya. The decay rate, 0.46% day−1 in under-canopy and 0.48% day−1 in canopy gap, was also fast. Owing to this the species may be able to modify the habitats to its advantage, as has been reported elsewhere.

  4. Selective logging and fire as drivers of alien grass invasion in a Bolivian tropical dry forest

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldman, J.W.; Mostacedo, B.; Peña-Claros, M.; Putz, F.E.

    2009-01-01

    Logging is an integral component of most conceptual models that relate human land-use and climate change to tropical deforestation via positive-feedbacks involving fire. Given that grass invasions can substantially alter fire regimes, we studied grass distributions in a tropical dry forest 1-5 yr

  5. Decomposition of Phragmites australis litter retarded by invasive Solidago canadensis in mixtures: an antagonistic non-additive effect

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ling; Zhang, Yaojun; Zou, Jianwen; Siemann, Evan

    2014-06-01

    Solidago canadensis is an aggressive invader in China. Solidago invasion success is partially attributed to allelopathic compounds release and more benefits from AM fungi, which potentially makes the properties of Solidago litter different from co-occurring natives. These properties may comprehensively affect litter decomposition of co-occurring natives. We conducted a field experiment to examine litter mixing effects in a Phragmites australis dominated community invaded by Solidago in southeast China. Solidago had more rapid mass and N loss rate than Phragmites when they decomposed separately. Litter mixing decreased N loss rate in Phragmites litter and increased that of Solidago. Large decreases in Phragmites mass loss and smaller increases in Solidago mass loss caused negative non-additive effect. Solidago litter extracts reduced soil C decomposition and N processes, suggested an inhibitory effect of Solidago secondary compounds. These results are consistent with the idea that nutrient transfer and secondary compounds both affected litter mixtures decomposition.

  6. Decomposition of Phragmites australis litter retarded by invasive Solidago canadensis in mixtures: an antagonistic non-additive effect

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Ling; Zhang, Yaojun; Zou, Jianwen; Siemann, Evan

    2014-01-01

    Solidago canadensis is an aggressive invader in China. Solidago invasion success is partially attributed to allelopathic compounds release and more benefits from AM fungi, which potentially makes the properties of Solidago litter different from co-occurring natives. These properties may comprehensively affect litter decomposition of co-occurring natives. We conducted a field experiment to examine litter mixing effects in a Phragmites australis dominated community invaded by Solidago in southe...

  7. Diet Switching by Mammalian Herbivores in Response to Exotic Grass Invasion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Bremm

    Full Text Available Invasion by exotic grasses is a severe threat to the integrity of grassland ecosystems all over the world. Because grasslands are typically grazed by livestock and wildlife, the invasion is a community process modulated by herbivory. We hypothesized that the invasion of native South American grasslands by Eragrostis plana Nees, an exotic tussock-forming grass from Africa, could be deterred by grazing if grazers switched dietary preferences and included the invasive grass as a large proportion of their diets. Bos taurus (heifers and Ovis aries (ewes grazed plots with varying degrees of invasion by E. plana in a replicated manipulative experiment. Animal positions and species grazed were observed every minute in 45-min grazing session. Proportion of bites and steps in and out of E. plana tussocks were measured and used to calculate several indices of selectivity. Both heifers and ewes exhibited increasing probability of grazing E. plana as the proportion of area covered by tussocks increased, but they behaved differently. In agreement with expectations based on the allometry of dietary preferences and morphology, ewes consumed a low proportion of E. plana, except in areas that had more than 90% E. plana cover. Heifers consumed proportionally more E. plana than ewes. Contrary to our hypothesis, herbivores did not exhibit dietary switching towards the invasive grass. Moreover, they exhibited avoidance of the invasive grass and preference for short-statured native species, both of which should tend to enhance invasion. Unless invasive plants are highly palatable to livestock, the effect of grazing to deter the invasion is limited, due to the inherent avoidance of the invasive grass by the main grazers in the ecosystem, particularly sheep.

  8. EBIPM | Finding the Tools to Manage Invasive Annual Grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    management decisions for a given landscape based on ecological principles. Take a look at our video " Grass Management How much could prevention save you? Guidelines to Implement EBIPM Weed Prevention Areas Grass Facts/ID The EBIPM Model Crooked River Weed Management Area Guide Tools for Educators EBIPM High

  9. Phytophagous insect fauna tracks host plant responses to exotic grass invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida-Neto, Mário; Prado, Paulo I; Lewinsohn, Thomas M

    2011-04-01

    The high dependence of herbivorous insects on their host plants implies that plant invaders can affect these insects directly, by not providing a suitable habitat, or indirectly, by altering host plant availability. In this study, we sampled Asteraceae flower heads in cerrado remnants with varying levels of exotic grass invasion to evaluate whether invasive grasses have a direct effect on herbivore richness independent of the current disturbance level and host plant richness. By classifying herbivores according to the degree of host plant specialization, we also investigated whether invasive grasses reduce the uniqueness of the herbivorous assemblages. Herbivorous insect richness showed a unimodal relationship with invasive grass cover that was significantly explained only by way of the variation in host plant richness. The same result was found for polyphagous and oligophagous insects, but monophages showed a significant negative response to the intensity of the grass invasion that was independent of host plant richness. Our findings lend support to the hypothesis that the aggregate effect of invasive plants on herbivores tends to mirror the effects of invasive plants on host plants. In addition, exotic plants affect specialist insects differently from generalist insects; thus exotic plants affect not only the size but also the structural profile of herbivorous insect assemblages.

  10. Ecology, genetics, and biological control of invasive annual grasses in the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Several annual grass species native to Eurasia, including cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum), red brome (B. rubens), and medusahead (Taeniatherum caput-medusae) have become invasive in the western USA. These invasive species degrade rangelands by compromising forage, outcompeting native flora, and exacerb...

  11. Leaf litter traits of invasive species slow down decomposition compared to Spanish natives: a broad phylogenetic comparison.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godoy, Oscar; Castro-Díez, Pilar; Van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Valladares, Fernando

    2010-03-01

    Leaf traits related to the performance of invasive alien species can influence nutrient cycling through litter decomposition. However, there is no consensus yet about whether there are consistent differences in functional leaf traits between invasive and native species that also manifest themselves through their "after life" effects on litter decomposition. When addressing this question it is important to avoid confounding effects of other plant traits related to early phylogenetic divergences and to understand the mechanism underlying the observed results to predict which invasive species will exert larger effects on nutrient cycling. We compared initial leaf litter traits, and their effect on decomposability as tested in standardized incubations, in 19 invasive-native pairs of co-familial species from Spain. They included 12 woody and seven herbaceous alien species representative of the Spanish invasive flora. The predictive power of leaf litter decomposition rates followed the order: growth form > family > status (invasive vs. native) > leaf type. Within species pairs litter decomposition tended to be slower and more dependent on N and P in invaders than in natives. This difference was likely driven by the higher lignin content of invader leaves. Although our study has the limitation of not representing the natural conditions from each invaded community, it suggests a potential slowing down of the nutrient cycle at ecosystem scale upon invasion.

  12. Leaf litter traits of invasive alien species slow down decomposition compared to Spanish natives: a broad phylogenetic comparison.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Godoy, O.; Castro Diez, P.; van Logtestijn, R.S.P; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Valladares, F.

    2010-01-01

    Leaf traits related to the performance of invasive alien species can influence nutrient cycling through litter decomposition. However, there is no consensus yet about whether there are consistent differences in functional leaf traits between invasive and native species that also manifest themselves

  13. Invasive Andropogon gayanus (gamba grass) is an ecosystem transformer of nitrogen relations in Australian savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossiter-Rachor, N A; Setterfield, S A; Douglas, M M; Hutley, L B; Cook, G D; Schmidt, S

    2009-09-01

    Invasion by the African grass Andropogon gayanus is drastically altering the understory structure of oligotrophic savannas in tropical Australia. We compared nitrogen (N) relations and phenology of A. gayanus and native grasses to examine the impact of invasion on N cycling and to determine possible reasons for invasiveness of A. gayanus. Andropogon gayanus produced up to 10 and four times more shoot phytomass and root biomass, with up to seven and 2.5 times greater shoot and root N pools than native grass understory. These pronounced differences in phytomass and N pools between A. gayanus and native grasses were associated with an altered N cycle. Most growth occurs in the wet season when, compared with native grasses, dominance of A. gayanus was associated with significantly lower total soil N pools, lower nitrification rates, up to three times lower soil nitrate availability, and up to three times higher soil ammonium availability. Uptake kinetics for different N sources were studied with excised roots of three grass species ex situ. Excised roots of A. gayanus had an over six times higher-uptake rate of ammonium than roots of native grasses, while native grass Eriachne triseta had a three times higher uptake rate of nitrate than A. gayanus. We hypothesize that A. gayanus stimulates ammonification but inhibits nitrification, as was shown to occur in its native range in Africa, and that this modification of the soil N cycle is linked to the species' preference for ammonium as an N source. This mechanism could result in altered soil N relations and could enhance the competitive superiority and persistence of A. gayanus in Australian savannas.

  14. Soil nitrogen mineralization not affected by grass species traits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maged Ikram Nosshi; Jack Butler; M. J. Trlica

    2007-01-01

    Species N use traits was evaluated as a mechanism whereby Bromus inermis (Bromus), an established invasive, might alter soil N supply in a Northern mixed-grass prairie. We compared soils under stands of Bromus with those from three representative native grasses of different litter C/N: Andropogon...

  15. UAVs and Machine Learning Revolutionising Invasive Grass and Vegetation Surveys in Remote Arid Lands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Sandino

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The monitoring of invasive grasses and vegetation in remote areas is challenging, costly, and on the ground sometimes dangerous. Satellite and manned aircraft surveys can assist but their use may be limited due to the ground sampling resolution or cloud cover. Straightforward and accurate surveillance methods are needed to quantify rates of grass invasion, offer appropriate vegetation tracking reports, and apply optimal control methods. This paper presents a pipeline process to detect and generate a pixel-wise segmentation of invasive grasses, using buffel grass (Cenchrus ciliaris and spinifex (Triodia sp. as examples. The process integrates unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs also commonly known as drones, high-resolution red, green, blue colour model (RGB cameras, and a data processing approach based on machine learning algorithms. The methods are illustrated with data acquired in Cape Range National Park, Western Australia (WA, Australia, orthorectified in Agisoft Photoscan Pro, and processed in Python programming language, scikit-learn, and eXtreme Gradient Boosting (XGBoost libraries. In total, 342,626 samples were extracted from the obtained data set and labelled into six classes. Segmentation results provided an individual detection rate of 97% for buffel grass and 96% for spinifex, with a global multiclass pixel-wise detection rate of 97%. Obtained results were robust against illumination changes, object rotation, occlusion, background cluttering, and floral density variation.

  16. Invasion of non-native grasses causes a drop in soil carbon storage in California grasslands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koteen, Laura E; Harte, John [Energy and Resources Group, 310 Barrows Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States); Baldocchi, Dennis D, E-mail: lkoteen@berkeley.edu [Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, 137 Mulford Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)

    2011-10-15

    Vegetation change can affect the magnitude and direction of global climate change via its effect on carbon cycling among plants, the soil and the atmosphere. The invasion of non-native plants is a major cause of land cover change, of biodiversity loss, and of other changes in ecosystem structure and function. In California, annual grasses from Mediterranean Europe have nearly displaced native perennial grasses across the coastal hillsides and terraces of the state. Our study examines the impact of this invasion on carbon cycling and storage at two sites in northern coastal California. The results suggest that annual grass invasion has caused an average drop in soil carbon storage of 40 Mg/ha in the top half meter of soil, although additional mechanisms may also contribute to soil carbon losses. We attribute the reduction in soil carbon storage to low rates of net primary production in non-native annuals relative to perennial grasses, a shift in rooting depth and water use to primarily shallow sources, and soil respiratory losses in non-native grass soils that exceed production rates. These results indicate that even seemingly subtle land cover changes can significantly impact ecosystem functions in general, and carbon storage in particular.

  17. Invasion of non-native grasses causes a drop in soil carbon storage in California grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koteen, Laura E.; Baldocchi, Dennis D.; Harte, John

    2011-10-01

    Vegetation change can affect the magnitude and direction of global climate change via its effect on carbon cycling among plants, the soil and the atmosphere. The invasion of non-native plants is a major cause of land cover change, of biodiversity loss, and of other changes in ecosystem structure and function. In California, annual grasses from Mediterranean Europe have nearly displaced native perennial grasses across the coastal hillsides and terraces of the state. Our study examines the impact of this invasion on carbon cycling and storage at two sites in northern coastal California. The results suggest that annual grass invasion has caused an average drop in soil carbon storage of 40 Mg/ha in the top half meter of soil, although additional mechanisms may also contribute to soil carbon losses. We attribute the reduction in soil carbon storage to low rates of net primary production in non-native annuals relative to perennial grasses, a shift in rooting depth and water use to primarily shallow sources, and soil respiratory losses in non-native grass soils that exceed production rates. These results indicate that even seemingly subtle land cover changes can significantly impact ecosystem functions in general, and carbon storage in particular.

  18. Invasion of non-native grasses causes a drop in soil carbon storage in California grasslands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koteen, Laura E; Harte, John; Baldocchi, Dennis D

    2011-01-01

    Vegetation change can affect the magnitude and direction of global climate change via its effect on carbon cycling among plants, the soil and the atmosphere. The invasion of non-native plants is a major cause of land cover change, of biodiversity loss, and of other changes in ecosystem structure and function. In California, annual grasses from Mediterranean Europe have nearly displaced native perennial grasses across the coastal hillsides and terraces of the state. Our study examines the impact of this invasion on carbon cycling and storage at two sites in northern coastal California. The results suggest that annual grass invasion has caused an average drop in soil carbon storage of 40 Mg/ha in the top half meter of soil, although additional mechanisms may also contribute to soil carbon losses. We attribute the reduction in soil carbon storage to low rates of net primary production in non-native annuals relative to perennial grasses, a shift in rooting depth and water use to primarily shallow sources, and soil respiratory losses in non-native grass soils that exceed production rates. These results indicate that even seemingly subtle land cover changes can significantly impact ecosystem functions in general, and carbon storage in particular.

  19. Community structure affects annual grass weed invasion during restoration of a shrub-steppe ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phil S. Allen; Susan E. Meyer

    2014-01-01

    Ecological restoration of shrub-steppe communities in the western United States is often hampered by invasion of exotic annual grasses during the process. An important question is how to create restored communities that can better resist reinvasion by these weeds. One hypothesis is that communities comprised of species that are functionally similar to the invader will...

  20. Ecophysiological Responses of Invasive and Native Grass Communities with Simulated Warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quade, B.; Ravi, S.; Huxman, T. E.

    2010-12-01

    William Quade1, Sujith Ravi2, Ashley Weide2, Greg Barron-Gafford2, Katerina Dontsova2 and Travis E Huxman2 1Carthage College, WI 2 B2 Earthscience & UA Biosphere 2, University of Arizona, Tucson. Abstract Climate change, anthropogenic disturbances and lack of proper management practices have rendered many arid regions susceptible to invasions by exotic grasses with consequent ecohydrological, biogeochemical and socio economic implications. Thus, understanding the ecophysiological processes driving these large-scale vegetation shifts in drylands, in the context of rising temperatures and recurrent droughts is fundamental to global change research. Using the Biosphere 2 facility to maintain distinct temperature treatments of ambient and predicted warmer conditions (+ 4o C) inside, we compared the physiological (e.g. photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, biomass) responses of a native grass - Heteropogan contortus (Tanglehead) and an invasive grass - Pennisetum ciliare (Buffelgrass) growing in single and mixed communities. The results indicate that Buffelgrass can assimilate more CO2 per unit leaf area under current conditions, though warming seems to inhibit the performance when looking at biomass, photosynthesis and stomatal conductance. Under similar moisture regimes Buffelgrass performed better than Tangle head in mixed communities regardless of the temperature. Both grasses had decrease in stomatal conductance with warmer conditions, however the Buffel grass did not have the same decrease of conductance when planted in a mixed communities. Key words: Buffelgrass, Tanglehead, Biosphere 2, stomatal conductance, climate change

  1. Effect of an Invasive Grass on Ambient Rates of Decomposition and Microbial Community Structure: A Search for Causality

    Science.gov (United States)

    In sutu decomposition of above and below ground plant biomass of the native grass species Andropogon glmoeratus (Walt.) B.S.P and exotic Imperata cylindrica (L.) Beauv. (cogongrass) was investigated using litter bags over the course of a 12 month period. The above and below ground biomass of the inv...

  2. Evaluation of six candidate DNA barcode loci for identification of five important invasive grasses in eastern Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aisuo Wang

    Full Text Available Invasive grass weeds reduce farm productivity, threaten biodiversity, and increase weed control costs. Identification of invasive grasses from native grasses has generally relied on the morphological examination of grass floral material. DNA barcoding may provide an alternative means to identify co-occurring native and invasive grasses, particularly during early growth stages when floral characters are unavailable for analysis. However, there are no universal loci available for grass barcoding. We herein evaluated the utility of six candidate loci (atpF intron, matK, ndhK-ndhC, psbE-petL, ETS and ITS for barcode identification of several economically important invasive grass species frequently found among native grasses in eastern Australia. We evaluated these loci in 66 specimens representing five invasive grass species (Chloris gayana, Eragrostis curvula, Hyparrhenia hirta, Nassella neesiana, Nassella trichotoma and seven native grass species. Our results indicated that, while no single locus can be universally used as a DNA barcode for distinguishing the grass species examined in this study, two plastid loci (atpF and matK showed good distinguishing power to separate most of the taxa examined, and could be used as a dual locus to distinguish several of the invasive from the native species. Low PCR success rates were evidenced among two nuclear loci (ETS and ITS, and few species were amplified at these loci, however ETS was able to genetically distinguish the two important invasive Nassella species. Multiple loci analyses also suggested that ETS played a crucial role in allowing identification of the two Nassella species in the multiple loci combinations.

  3. Arbuscular mycorrhizal assemblages in native plant roots change in the presence of invasive exotic grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkes, C.V.; Belnap, J.; D'Antonio, C.; Firestone, M.K.

    2006-01-01

    Plant invasions have the potential to significantly alter soil microbial communities, given their often considerable aboveground effects. We examined how plant invasions altered the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi of native plant roots in a grassland site in California and one in Utah. In the California site, we used experimentally created plant communities composed of exotic (Avena barbata, Bromus hordeaceus) and native (Nassella pulchra, Lupinus bicolor) monocultures and mixtures. In the Utah semi-arid grassland, we took advantage of invasion by Bromus tectorum into long-term plots dominated by either of two native grasses, Hilaria jamesii or Stipa hymenoides. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi colonizing roots were characterized with PCR amplification of the ITS region, cloning, and sequencing. We saw a significant effect of the presence of exotic grasses on the diversity of mycorrhizal fungi colonizing native plant roots. In the three native grasses, richness of mycorrhizal fungi decreased; in the native forb at the California site, the number of fungal RFLP patterns increased in the presence of exotics. The exotic grasses also caused the composition of the mycorrhizal community in native roots to shift dramatically both in California, with turnover of Glomus spp., and Utah, with replacement of Glomus spp. by apparently non-mycorrhizal fungi. Invading plants may be able to influence the network of mycorrhizal fungi in soil that is available to natives through either earlier root activity or differential carbon provision compared to natives. Alteration of the soil microbial community by plant invasion can provide a mechanism for both successful invasion and the resulting effects of invaders on the ecosystem. ?? Springer 2006.

  4. Feasibility of Invasive Grass Detection in a Desertscrub Community Using Hyperspectral Field Measurements and Landsat TM Imagery

    OpenAIRE

    Olsson, Aaryn D.; Leeuwen, Willem J.D. van; Marsh, Stuart E.

    2011-01-01

    Invasive species’ phenologies often contrast with those of native species, representing opportunities for detection of invasive species with multi-temporal remote sensing. Detection is especially critical for ecosystem-transforming species that facilitate changes in disturbance regimes. The African C4 grass, Pennisetum ciliare, is transforming ecosystems on three continents and a number of neotropical islands by introducing a grass-fire cycle. However, previous attempts at discriminating P. c...

  5. Management techniques for the control of Melinis minutiflora P. Beauv. (molasses grass: ten years of research on an invasive grass species in the Brazilian Cerrado

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Romero Martins

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The invasion of exotic species is considered to be a major threat to the preservation of biodiversity. In the Parque Nacional de Brasília (National Park of Brasília, the invasive Melinis minutiflora (molasses grass occupies more than 10 % of the area of the park. The present, long-term, study compared two treatments of exposure to molasses grass: 1 fire and 2 integrated management (fire + herbicide sprays + manual removal. The aerial biomass of molasses grass in the experimental area initially represented ca. 55 % of the total aerial biomass, a percentage that apparently did not influence native plant species richness at this site. Fire alone was not sufficient to control molasses grass, which attained its pre-treatment biomass values after two years. Integrated management reduced, and maintained, biomass to less than 1 % of its original value after ten years, and maintained this level throughout the study, demonstrating that it is a promising strategy for the recovery of areas invaded by molasses grass in the Cerrado. However, because of the recolonization by molasses grass, long-term monitoring efforts are targeting outbreaks, which would require immediate intervention in order to maintain the native biological diversity of the region.

  6. When perception reflects reality: Non-native grass invasion alters small mammal risk landscapes and survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceradnini, Joseph P.; Chalfoun, Anna

    2017-01-01

    Modification of habitat structure due to invasive plants can alter the risk landscape for wildlife by, for example, changing the quality or availability of refuge habitat. Whether perceived risk corresponds with actual fitness outcomes, however, remains an important open question. We simultaneously measured how habitat changes due to a common invasive grass (cheatgrass, Bromus tectorum) affected the perceived risk, habitat selection, and apparent survival of a small mammal, enabling us to assess how well perceived risk influenced important behaviors and reflected actual risk. We measured perceived risk by nocturnal rodents using a giving-up density foraging experiment with paired shrub (safe) and open (risky) foraging trays in cheatgrass and native habitats. We also evaluated microhabitat selection across a cheatgrass gradient as an additional assay of perceived risk and behavioral responses for deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) at two spatial scales of habitat availability. Finally, we used mark-recapture analysis to quantify deer mouse apparent survival across a cheatgrass gradient while accounting for detection probability and other habitat features. In the foraging experiment, shrubs were more important as protective cover in cheatgrass-dominated habitats, suggesting that cheatgrass increased perceived predation risk. Additionally, deer mice avoided cheatgrass and selected shrubs, and marginally avoided native grass, at two spatial scales. Deer mouse apparent survival varied with a cheatgrass–shrub interaction, corresponding with our foraging experiment results, and providing a rare example of a native plant mediating the effects of an invasive plant on wildlife. By synthesizing the results of three individual lines of evidence (foraging behavior, habitat selection, and apparent survival), we provide a rare example of linkage between behavioral responses of animals indicative of perceived predation risk and actual fitness outcomes. Moreover, our results

  7. Invasive species in the flora of the Starobilsk grass-meadow steppe (Ukraine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kucher Oksana O.

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The results of an investigation of the invasive species in the flora of the Starobilsk grass-meadow steppe are presented. Check-list of alien plant has over 386 species of vascular plants of which 28 species are invasive. We have identified 6 transformer species from the invasive plants. We aggregate data on the entry, distribution history, ecology, occurrence in different plant communities, degree of their naturalization and the habitats where they occur. The leading families of invasive species are: Asteraceae. The basis for this group is presented by origin from the North America and the Mediterranean. With respect to the time of immigration, most of them are kenophytes. By the method of introduction, ksenophytes are dominated; according to the degree of naturalization epoecophytes and agriophytes dominate in this group. With regard to the characteristics of life forms, half of invasive species are terophytes. The vast majority of plants are heliophytes and xeromesophytes. Most species are found in biotopes group I: Cultivated agricultural biotopes; least of all species found in biotopes group F: Biotopes dominated by chamephytes and nanophanerophytes. Only 3 species found in biotopes group F: Biotopes dominated by chamephytesand nanophanerophytes. The maps of distribution of 28 invasive species are provided. Most of the species marked dispersed in more than 30 squares.

  8. Does crotalaria (Crotalaria breviflora or pumpkin (Cucurbita moschata inter-row cultivation in restoration plantings control invasive grasses?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Gomes César

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Alternative methods to control invasive fodder grasses are necessary to reduce the use of herbicides in forest restoration, which has been carried out primarily in riparian zones. We sought to investigate if inter-row cultivation of crotalaria (Crotalaria breviflora DC or pumpkin (Cucurbita moschata Duschene ex. Poir with native tree species is an efficient strategy to control invasive fodder grasses in restoration plantings. We tested five treatments in a randomized block design, namely (1 control of brachiaria grass (Urochloa decumbens (Stapf. Webster with glyphosate in the implementation and post-planting grass control of the reforestation, (2 and 3 glyphosate use in the implementation and inter-row sowing of crotalaria (2 or pumpkin (3, and control of brachiaria by mowing in the post-planting phase, (4 and 5 mowing in the implementation and inter-row sowing of crotalaria (4 or pumpkin (5, and control of brachiaria by mowing in the post-planting phase. Post-planting grass control was carried out four and nine months after tree seedling planting. Throughout 13 months, we evaluated the percentage of ground cover by brachiaria grass, pumpkin production, and native tree seedling mortality, height and crown cover. The exclusive use of glyphosate, without inter-row sowing of pumpkin or crotalaria showed the most favorable results for controlling brachiaria grass and, consequently, for tree seedling development. Hence, inter-row cultivation of green manure or short-lived crop species is not enough to control invasive grasses in restoration plantings, and complementary weeding is necessary to reduce the highly competitive potential of C4 grasses for supporting native species seedlings growth.

  9. Alien plant invasion in mixed-grass prairie: Effects of vegetation type and anthropogenic disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, D.L.; Anderson, P.J.; Newton, W.

    2001-01-01

    The ability of alien plant species to invade a region depends not only on attributes of the plant, but on characteristics of the habitat being invaded. Here, we examine characteristics that may influence the success of alien plant invasion in mixed-grass prairie at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, in western North Dakota, USA. The park consists of two geographically separate units with similar vegetation types and management history, which allowed us to examine the effects of native vegetation type, anthropogenic disturbance, and the separate park units on the invasion of native plant communities by alien plant species common to counties surrounding both park units. If matters of chance related to availability of propagules and transient establishment opportunities determine the success of invasion, park unit and anthropogenic disturbance should better explain the variation in alien plant frequency. If invasibility is more strongly related to biotic or physical characteristics of the native plant communities, models of alien plant occurrence should include vegetation type as an explanatory variable. We examined >1300 transects across all vegetation types in both units of the park. Akaike's Information Criterion (AIC) indicated that the fully parameterized model, including the interaction among vegetation type, disturbance, and park unit, best described the distribution of both total number of alien plants per transect and frequency of alien plants on transects where they occurred. Although all vegetation types were invaded by alien plants, mesic communities had both greater numbers and higher frequencies of alien plants than did drier communities. A strong element of stochasticity, reflected in differences in frequencies of individual species between the two park units, suggests that prediction of risk of invasion will always involve uncertainty. In addition, despite well-documented associations between anthropogenic disturbance and alien plant invasion, five of

  10. Leaf litter of invasive Chinese tallow (Triadica sebifera) negatively affects hatching success of an aquatic breeding anuran, the southern leopard frog (Lithobates sphenocephalus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    C.K. Adams; D. Saenz

    2012-01-01

    Chinese tallow (Triadica sebifera (L.) Small) is an aggressive invasive tree species that can be abundant in parts of its non-native range. This tree species has the capability of producing monocultures, by outcompeting native trees, which can be in or near wetlands that are utilized by breeding amphibians. Existing research suggests that leaf litter from invasive...

  11. Shade treatment affects structure and recovery of invasive C4 African grass Echinochloa pyramidalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López Rosas, Hugo; Moreno-Casasola, Patricia; Espejel González, Verónica E

    2015-03-01

    Echinochloa pyramidalis (Lam.) Hitchc. & Chase is an African grass with C4 photosynthesis, high biomass production, and high vegetative propagation that is tolerant to grazing and able to grow in flooded and dry conditions. Thus, it is highly invasive in tropical freshwater marshes where it is intentionally planted by ranchers to increase cattle production. This invasion is reducing plant biodiversity by increasing the invader's aerial coverage, changing wetland hydrology and causing soil physicochemical changes such as vertical accretion. Reducing the dominance of this species and increasing the density of native wetland species is a difficult, expensive, and time-consuming process. We applied a series of disturbance treatments aimed at eliminating E. pyramidalis and recovering the native vegetation of a partially invaded freshwater marsh. Treatments included physical (cutting, soil disking, transplanting individuals of the key native species Sagittaria lancifolia subsp. media (Micheli) Bogin, and/or reducing light with shade mesh) and/or chemical (spraying Round-Up™ herbicide) disturbances. At the end of the experiment, four of the five treatments used were effective in increasing the cover and biomass of native species and reducing that of E. pyramidalis. The combination of these treatments should be used to generate a proposal for the restoration of tropical wetlands invaded by non-native grasses. A promising treatment is using soil disked to soften the soil and destroy belowground structures such as roots and rhizomes. This treatment would be more promising if combined with the use of shade cloth. If it is desirable not to impact the soil or if there is not enough budget to make an effort to include active restoration disking soil, the use of shade cloth will suffice, although the recovery of native vegetation will be slower.

  12. Resilience to disturbance and resistance to alien grass invasions in the cold desert of western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alien grass invasions are resulting in ecosystem-level transformations of entire landscapes in arid and semi-arid ecosystems. The cold desert of western US is undergoing such a transformation, and is considered one of the most imperiled large ecosystems in the US. To address the rapid and complex ch...

  13. Searching for microbial biological control candidates for invasive grasses: coupling expanded field research with strides in biotechnology and grassland restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Highly invasive grasses (e.g. Bromus spp., Pennisetum ciliare, Taeniatherum caput-medusae) are largely unabated in much of the arid Western U.S., despite more than 70 years of control attempts with a wide array of tools and management practices. The development and sustained integration of new appro...

  14. Simulating long-term effectiveness and efficiency of management scenarios for an invasive grass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Holcombe, Tracy R.; Cullinane Thomas, Catherine; Frid, Leonardo; Olsson, Aaryn D.

    2015-01-01

    Resource managers are often faced with trade-offs in allocating limited resources to manage plant invasions. These decisions must often be made with uncertainty about the location of infestations, their rate of spread and effectiveness of management actions. Landscape level simulation tools such as state-and-transition simulation models (STSMs) can be used to evaluate the potential long term consequences of alternative management strategies and help identify those strategies that make efficient use of resources. We analyzed alternative management scenarios for African buffelgrass (Pennisetum ciliare syn. Cenchrus ciliaris) at Ironwood Forest National Monument, Arizona using a spatially explicit STSM implemented in the Tool for Exploratory Landscape Scenario Analyses (TELSA). Buffelgrass is an invasive grass that is spreading rapidly in the Sonoran Desert, affecting multiple habitats and jurisdictions. This invasion is creating a novel fire risk and transforming natural ecosystems. The model used in this application incorporates buffelgrass dispersal and establishment and management actions and effectiveness including inventory, treatment and post-treatment maintenance. We simulated 11 alternative scenarios developed in consultation with buffelgrass managers and other stakeholders. The scenarios vary according to the total budget allocated for management and the allocation of that budget between different kinds of management actions. Scenario results suggest that to achieve an actual reduction and stabilization of buffelgrass populations, management unconstrained by fiscal restrictions and across all jurisdictions and private lands is required; without broad and aggressive management, buffelgrass populations are expected to increase over time. However, results also suggest that large upfront investments can achieve control results that require relatively minimal spending in the future. Investing the necessary funds upfront to control the invasion results in the most

  15. Simulating long-term effectiveness and efficiency of management scenarios for an invasive grass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine S. Jarnevich

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Resource managers are often faced with trade-offs in allocating limited resources to manage plant invasions. These decisions must often be made with uncertainty about the location of infestations, their rate of spread and effectiveness of management actions. Landscape level simulation tools such as state-and-transition simulation models (STSMs can be used to evaluate the potential long term consequences of alternative management strategies and help identify those strategies that make efficient use of resources. We analyzed alternative management scenarios for African buffelgrass (Pennisetum ciliare syn. Cenchrus ciliaris at Ironwood Forest National Monument, Arizona using a spatially explicit STSM implemented in the Tool for Exploratory Landscape Scenario Analyses (TELSA. Buffelgrass is an invasive grass that is spreading rapidly in the Sonoran Desert, affecting multiple habitats and jurisdictions. This invasion is creating a novel fire risk and transforming natural ecosystems. The model used in this application incorporates buffelgrass dispersal and establishment and management actions and effectiveness including inventory, treatment and post-treatment maintenance. We simulated 11 alternative scenarios developed in consultation with buffelgrass managers and other stakeholders. The scenarios vary according to the total budget allocated for management and the allocation of that budget between different kinds of management actions. Scenario results suggest that to achieve an actual reduction and stabilization of buffelgrass populations, management unconstrained by fiscal restrictions and across all jurisdictions and private lands is required; without broad and aggressive management, buffelgrass populations are expected to increase over time. However, results also suggest that large upfront investments can achieve control results that require relatively minimal spending in the future. Investing the necessary funds upfront to control the invasion

  16. Global thermal niche models of two European grasses show high invasion risks in Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pertierra, Luis R; Aragón, Pedro; Shaw, Justine D; Bergstrom, Dana M; Terauds, Aleks; Olalla-Tárraga, Miguel Ángel

    2017-07-01

    The two non-native grasses that have established long-term populations in Antarctica (Poa pratensis and Poa annua) were studied from a global multidimensional thermal niche perspective to address the biological invasion risk to Antarctica. These two species exhibit contrasting introduction histories and reproductive strategies and represent two referential case studies of biological invasion processes. We used a multistep process with a range of species distribution modelling techniques (ecological niche factor analysis, multidimensional envelopes, distance/entropy algorithms) together with a suite of thermoclimatic variables, to characterize the potential ranges of these species. Their native bioclimatic thermal envelopes in Eurasia, together with the different naturalized populations across continents, were compared next. The potential niche of P. pratensis was wider at the cold extremes; however, P. annua life history attributes enable it to be a more successful colonizer. We observe that particularly cold summers are a key aspect of the unique Antarctic environment. In consequence, ruderals such as P. annua can quickly expand under such harsh conditions, whereas the more stress-tolerant P. pratensis endures and persist through steady growth. Compiled data on human pressure at the Antarctic Peninsula allowed us to provide site-specific biosecurity risk indicators. We conclude that several areas across the region are vulnerable to invasions from these and other similar species. This can only be visualized in species distribution models (SDMs) when accounting for founder populations that reveal nonanalogous conditions. Results reinforce the need for strict management practices to minimize introductions. Furthermore, our novel set of temperature-based bioclimatic GIS layers for ice-free terrestrial Antarctica provide a mechanism for regional and global species distribution models to be built for other potentially invasive species. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Decomposition of leaf litter from a native tree and an actinorhizal invasive across riparian habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harner, Mary J; Crenshaw, Chelsea L; Abelho, Manuela; Stursova, Martina; Shah, Jennifer J Follstad; Sinsabaugh, Robert L

    2009-07-01

    Dynamics of nutrient exchange between floodplains and rivers have been altered by changes in flow management and proliferation of nonnative plants. We tested the hypothesis that the nonnative, actinorhizal tree, Russian olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia), alters dynamics of leaf litter decomposition compared to native cottonwood (Populus deltoides ssp. wislizeni) along the Rio Grande, a river with a modified flow regime, in central New Mexico (U.S.A.). Leaf litter was placed in the river channel and the surface and subsurface horizons of forest soil at seven riparian sites that differed in their hydrologic connection to the river. All sites had a cottonwood canopy with a Russian olive-dominated understory. Mass loss rates, nutrient content, fungal biomass, extracellular enzyme activities (EEA), and macroinvertebrate colonization were followed for three months in the river and one year in forests. Initial nitrogen (N) content of Russian olive litter (2.2%) was more than four times that of cottonwood (0.5%). Mass loss rates (k; in units of d(-1)) were greatest in the river (Russian olive, k = 0.0249; cottonwood, k = 0.0226), intermediate in subsurface soil (Russian olive, k = 0.0072; cottonwood, k = 0.0031), and slowest on the soil surface (Russian olive, k = 0.0034; cottonwood, k = 0.0012) in a ratio of about 10:2:1. Rates of mass loss in the river were indistinguishable between species and proportional to macroinvertebrate colonization. In the riparian forest, Russian olive decayed significantly faster than cottonwood in both soil horizons. Terrestrial decomposition rates were related positively to EEA, fungal biomass, and litter N, whereas differences among floodplain sites were related to hydrologic connectivity with the river. Because nutrient exchanges between riparian forests and the river have been constrained by flow management, Russian olive litter represents a significant annual input of N to riparian forests, which now retain a large portion of slowly

  18. Integrating invasive grasses into carbon cycle projections: Cogongrass spread in southern pine forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCabe, T. D.; Flory, S. L.; Wiesner, S.; Dietze, M.

    2017-12-01

    Forested ecosystems are currently being disrupted by invasive species. One example is the invasive grass Imperata cylindrica (cogongrass), which is widespread in southeastern US pine forests. Pines forests dominate the forest cover of the southeast, and contribute to making the Southeast the United States' largest carbon sink. Cogongrass decreases the colonization of loblolly pine fine roots. If cogongrass continues to invade,this sink could be jeopardized. However, the effects of cogongrass invasion on carbon sequestration are largely unknown. We have projected the effects of elevated CO2 and changing climate on future cogongrass invasion. To test how pine stands are affected by cogongrass, cogongrass invasions were modeled using the Ecosystem Demography 2 (ED2) model, and parameterized using the Predictive Ecosystem Analyzer (PEcAn). ED2 takes into account local meteorological data, stand populations and succession, disturbance, and geochemical pools. PEcAn is a workflow that uses Bayesian sensitivity analyses and variance decomposition to quantify the uncertainty that each parameter contributes to overall model uncertainty. ED2 was run for four NEON and Ameriflux sites in the Southeast from the earliest available census of the site into 2010. These model results were compared to site measures to test for model accuracy and bias. To project the effect of elevated CO2 on cogongrass invasions, ED was run from 2006-2100 at four sites under four separate scenarios: 1) RPC4.5 CO2 and climate, 2) RPC4.5 climate only, with constant CO2 concentrations, 3) RPC4.5 Elevated CO2 only, with climate randomly selected from 2006-2026, 4) Present Day, made from randomly selected measures of CO2 and radiation from 2006-2026. Each scenario was run three times; once with cogongrass absent, once with a low cogongrass abundance, and once with a high cogongrass abundance. Model results suggest that many relevant parameters have high uncertainty due to lack of measurement. Further field

  19. Predicting potential global distributions of two Miscanthus grasses: implications for horticulture, biofuel production, and biological invasions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hager, Heather A; Sinasac, Sarah E; Gedalof, Ze'ev; Newman, Jonathan A

    2014-01-01

    In many regions, large proportions of the naturalized and invasive non-native floras were originally introduced deliberately by humans. Pest risk assessments are now used in many jurisdictions to regulate the importation of species and usually include an estimation of the potential distribution in the import area. Two species of Asian grass (Miscanthus sacchariflorus and M. sinensis) that were originally introduced to North America as ornamental plants have since escaped cultivation. These species and their hybrid offspring are now receiving attention for large-scale production as biofuel crops in North America and elsewhere. We evaluated their potential global climate suitability for cultivation and potential invasion using the niche model CLIMEX and evaluated the models' sensitivity to the parameter values. We then compared the sensitivity of projections of future climatically suitable area under two climate models and two emissions scenarios. The models indicate that the species have been introduced to most of the potential global climatically suitable areas in the northern but not the southern hemisphere. The more narrowly distributed species (M. sacchariflorus) is more sensitive to changes in model parameters, which could have implications for modelling species of conservation concern. Climate projections indicate likely contractions in potential range in the south, but expansions in the north, particularly in introduced areas where biomass production trials are under way. Climate sensitivity analysis shows that projections differ more between the selected climate change models than between the selected emissions scenarios. Local-scale assessments are required to overlay suitable habitat with climate projections to estimate areas of cultivation potential and invasion risk.

  20. Feasibility of Invasive Grass Detection in a Desertscrub Community Using Hyperspectral Field Measurements and Landsat TM Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart E. Marsh

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Invasive species’ phenologies often contrast with those of native species, representing opportunities for detection of invasive species with multi-temporal remote sensing. Detection is especially critical for ecosystem-transforming species that facilitate changes in disturbance regimes. The African C4 grass, Pennisetum ciliare, is transforming ecosystems on three continents and a number of neotropical islands by introducing a grass-fire cycle. However, previous attempts at discriminating P. ciliare in North America using multi-spectral imagery have been unsuccessful. In this paper, we integrate field measurements of hyperspectral plant species signatures and canopy cover with multi-temporal spectral analysis to identify opportunities for detection using moderate-resolution multi-spectral imagery. By applying these results to Landsat TM imagery, we show that multi-spectral discrimination of P. ciliare in heterogeneous mixed desert scrub is feasible, but only at high abundance levels that may have limited value to land managers seeking to control invasion. Much higher discriminability is possible with hyperspectral shortwave infrared imagery because of differences in non-photosynthetic vegetation in uninvaded and invaded landscapes during dormant seasons but these spectra are unavailable in multispectral sensors. Therefore, we recommend hyperspectral imagery for distinguishing invasive grass-dominated landscapes from uninvaded desert scrub.

  1. Exotic Annual Grasses in Western Rangelands: Predicting Resistance and Resilience of Native Ecosystems to Invasion (Draft)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-04-22

    herbivores on Ipomopsis arizonica . In addition, litter and neighboring plants can influence herbivore damage by concealing seeds and small seedlings...1991. Facilitation and interference of Quercus douglasii on understory productivity in central California. - Ecology 72: 1484- 1499. 66 Callaway, R

  2. Effects of an invasive grass on the demography of the Caribbean cactus Harrisia portoricensis: Implications for cacti conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas-Sandoval, Julissa; Meléndez-Ackerman, Elvia

    2012-05-01

    The impact of exotic species around the world is among the primary threats to the conservation and management of rare and endangered species. In this work we asked whether or not the presence of the African grass Megathyrsus maximus on Mona Island was associated with negative impacts on the demography of the endangered Caribbean cactus Harrisia portoricensis. To address this question we performed field observations where we compared demographic data collected at un-manipulated areas invaded by Megathyrsus with un-manipulated areas non-invaded by this exotic grass. Additionally, demographic data were also collected in areas in which we removed the exotic grass biomass using two alternative treatments: complete and partial grass removal. Results demonstrated that the presence of Megathyrsus has negative effects on demographic parameters of Harrisia at various stages throughout its life cycle. In general, the survival, growth, and reproduction of Harrisia plants were depressed under the presence of Megathyrsus. Growth and survival of seedlings and juveniles of Harrisia were more impacted by the presence of Megathyrsus than adult performance and seedling recruitment only occurred in areas with grass absence. Our combined results suggest that modifications of the micro-environment by the presence of Megathyrsus may add an additional level of vulnerability to the persistence of Harrisia, and as such this factor must be considered when designing conservation strategies for this endangered species. This study highlights the need for a greater emphasis on understanding the interactions between invasive grass species and native cacti, and the importance of such information in designing conservation strategies for cacti species elsewhere.

  3. Monitoring the Distribution and Dynamics of an Invasive Grass in Tropical Savanna Using Airborne LiDAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaun R. Levick

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The spread of an alien invasive grass (gamba grass—Andropogon gayanus in the tropical savannas of Northern Australia is a major threat to habitat quality and biodiversity in the region, primarily through its influence on fire intensity. Effective control and eradication of this invader requires better insight into its spatial distribution and rate of spread to inform management actions. We used full-waveform airborne LiDAR to map areas of known A. gayanus invasion in the Batchelor region of the Northern Territory, Australia. Our stratified sampling campaign included wooded savanna areas with differing degrees of A. gayanus invasion and adjacent areas of native grass and woody tree mixtures. We used height and spatial contiguity based metrics to classify returns from A. gayanus and developed spatial representations of A. gayanus occurrence (1 m resolution and canopy cover (10 m resolution. The cover classification proved robust against two independent field-based investigations at 500 m2 (R2 = 0.87, RMSE = 12.53 and 100 m2 (R2 = 0.79, RMSE = 14.13 scale. Our mapping results provide a solid benchmark for evaluating the rate and pattern of A. gayanus spread from future LiDAR campaigns. In addition, this high-resolution mapping can be used to inform satellite image analysis for the evaluation of A. gayanus invasion over broader regional scales. Our research highlights the huge potential that airborne LiDAR holds for facilitating the monitoring and management of savanna habitat condition.

  4. Exotic Annual Grasses in Western Rangelands: Predicting Resistance and Resilience of Native Ecosystems to Invasion (Draft)

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Belnap, Jayne; Evans, R. D; Phillips, Susan L; Reheis, Merith; Reynolds, Rich; Sanford, Robert; Webb, Bruce

    2004-01-01

    Bromus tectorum (hereafter referred to as Bromus) is a non-native annual grass from the Mediterranean region that arrived in the United States in the late 19th century and soon spread throughout the western states...

  5. Katkor(R cat litter, a non-invasive method of collecting cat urine for phosphate determination : short communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.C. Delport

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available This study was done to compare the collection of cat urine, for phosphate concentration determination, by catheterisation with that via a proprietary cat litter (Katkor (R. The passage of urine through the litter or its retention in the litter for a period of 2 hours did not affect the concentration of phosphates compared with that of the original sample. Apart from a small volume of urine trapped in the litter by capillary action, and some urine adhering to the funnel in which the litter was placed, the litter proved to be an excellent medium for routine urine collection from cats, and more especially as an alternative to catheterisation when regular collection from a particular cat is required.

  6. Negative effect of litter of invasive weed Lantana camara on structure and composition of vegetation in the lower Siwalik Hills, northern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Harminder Pal; Batish, Daizy R; Dogra, Kuldip Singh; Kaur, Shalinder; Kohli, Ravinder Kumar; Negi, Anjana

    2014-06-01

    Lantana camara, an aromatic shrub, native to tropical America, was introduced into India for ornamental hedging, but later escaped and became a serious invasive weed. This study assessed the quantitative and qualitative status of plant community richness and diversity in areas invaded by L. camara in the Siwalik Hills (Himachal Pradesh, India), and explored allelopathy as a possible mechanism of interference. We measured species diversity, richness and evenness of the vegetation in areas invaded and uninvaded by L. camara. Allelopathic effects of L. camara rhizosphere soil and litter were assessed against two native plants-Achyranthes aspera (a herb) and Albizia lebbeck (a tree). Density, biomass and indices of diversity, richness and evenness were reduced by L. camara, indicating a significant alteration in composition and structure of native communities. Seedling growth of the test species was reduced in L. camara rhizosphere- and litter-amended soil. The inhibitory effect was ameliorated by the addition of activated charcoal, indicating the presence of organic inhibitors (quantified as phenolics) in the soil. Lantana invasion greatly reduces the density and diversity of the vegetation in the invaded area, and chemical interference of its litter plays an important role in invasion.

  7. Influence of invasive Acer negundo leaf litter on benthic microbial abundance and activity in the littoral zone of a temperate river in Lithuania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krevš Alina

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Riparian forests are known as important source of allochthonous organic matter entering to water ecosystems via fallen leaves. However, leaf litter, depending on their quality, may create different conditions for benthic microorganisms functioning in littoral zone of water bodies. In order to evaluate the impact of riparian invasive Acer negundo on littoral water zone of the River Neris (Lithuania, we performed physicochemical and microbiological investigations in bottom sediments of three different sites of the river. One sampling site was close by riparian A. negundo, another close by native Alnus glutinosa location and a third zone was near the shore without riparian vegetation. Content of nutrients in the littoral sediments differed between invasive and native trees leaf litter accumulation sites, while not always significantly. The highest microbial densities as well as benthic community respiratory activity (expressed as the rate of organic carbon mineralization occurred in A. negundo leaves accumulation site. In sediments of this site, the most intensive anaerobic terminal organic carbon mineralization process − sulfate reduction and the highest concentration of hydrogen sulfide were also observed. Differences in the intensity of mineralization processes between sites suggest that the replacement of the riparian native species such as dominant A. glutinosa by invasive A. negundo with higher biodegradability leaves may induce local changes in organic matter processing in the littoral zone of the river. The increase of littoral bioproductivity in the accumulation zone of A. negundo leaf litter can occur due to the inflow of available organic matter and its intensive mineralization.

  8. The grasses (Poaceae) of the Colombian Guyana: analyses on their composition, richness, endemism, and invasion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Giraldo Canas, Diego

    2010-01-01

    The checklist of grasses from Colombian Guyana is presented. In all, 152 species, 69 genera, and six subfamilies were recorded. Thus, in the Colombian Guyana is represented the 18.7 and 43.7% of the species and genera of Colombian grasses, respectively. The subfamilies with the highest number of species were Panicoideae (110 species/46 genera), Chloridoideae (21/9), and Bambusoideae (11/9). The most diverse genera were Paspalum (19 species), Panicum (16), Axonopus (14), Eragrostis (9), and Digitaria (8). Nineteen species are introduced and naturalized in the Colombian Guyana, which represent 12.5% of the agrostological flora for the Colombian Guyana. There were 8 endemic species (5.3% of Colombian Guayanan grasses). In addition, some species are reported for the first time for Colombian flora (belonging to Axonopus, Cyphonanthus, Gymnopogon, and Paspalum), and some species are new to science (belonging to Axonopus, Digitaria, Eragrostis, and Sacciolepis). On the other hand, some preliminary biogeographical aspect are analyzed.

  9. The indirect effects of cheatgrass invasion: Grasshopper herbivory on native grasses determined by neighboring cheatgrass abundance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Julie Beckstead; Susan E. Meyer; Carol K. Augsperger

    2008-01-01

    Invasion biology has focused on the direct effects of plant invasion and has generally overlooked indirect interactions. Here we link theories of invasion biology and herbivory to explore an indirect effect of one invading species on associational herbivory (the effect of neighboring plants on herbivory) of native species. We studied a Great Basin shadscale (...

  10. Alien plant invasion in mixed-grass prairie: effects of vegetation type, stochiasticity, and anthropogenic disturbance in two park units

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Diane L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Newton, Wesley E.

    2001-01-01

    The ability of alien plant species to invade a region depends not only on attributes of the plant, but on characteristics of the habitat being invaded. Here, we examine characteristics that may influence the success of alien plant invasion in mixed-grass prairie at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, in western North Dakota, USA. The park consists of two geographically separate units with similar vegetation types and management history, which allowed us to examine the effects of native vegetation type, anthropogenic disturbance, and the separate park units on the invasion of native plant communities by alien plant species common to counties surrounding both park units. If matters of chance related to availability of propagules and transient establishment opportunities determine the success of invasion, park unit and anthropogenic disturbance should better explain the variation in alien plant frequency. If invasibility is more strongly related to biotic or physical characteristics of the native plant communities, models of alien plant occurrence should include vegetation type as an explanatory variable. We examined >1300 transects across all vegetation types in both units of the park. Akaike's Information Criterion (AIC) indicated that the fully parameterized model, including the interaction among vegetation type, disturbance, and park unit, best described the distribution of both total number of alien plants per transect and frequency of alien plants on transects where they occurred. Although all vegetation types were invaded by alien plants, mesic communities had both greater numbers and higher frequencies of alien plants than did drier communities. A strong element of stochasticity, reflected in differences in frequencies of individual species between the two park units, suggests that prediction of risk of invasion will always involve uncertainty. In addition, despite well-documented associations between anthropogenic disturbance and alien plant invasion, five of

  11. The grasses (Poaceae) of the Colombian guayana: analyses on their composition, richness, endemism, and invasion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Canas, Diego Giraldo

    2010-01-01

    The checklist of grasses from Colombian Guayana is presented. In all, 152 species, 69 genera, and six subfamilies were recorded. Thus, in the Colombian Guayana is represented the 18.7 and 43.7% of the species and genera of Colombian grasses, respectively. The subfamilies with the highest number of species were Panicoideae (110 species/46 genera), Chloridoideae (21/9), and Bambusoideae (11/9). The most diverse genera were Paspalum (19 species), Panicum (16), Axonopus (14), Eragrostis (9), and Digitaria (8). Nineteen species are introduced and naturalized in the Colombian Guayana, which represent 12.5% of the agrostological flora for the Colombian Guayana. There were 8 endemic species (5.3% of Colombian Guayanan grasses). In addition, some species are reported for the first time for Colombian flora (belonging to Axonopus, Cyphonanthus, Gymnopogon, and Paspalum), and some species are new to science (belonging to Axonopus, Digitaria, Eragrostis, and Sacciolepis). On the other hand, some preliminary biogeographical aspect are analyzed Flora of Colombia,

  12. Applying ecological concepts to the management of widespread grass invasions [Chapter 7

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carla M. D' Antonio; Jeanne C. Chambers; Rhonda Loh; J. Tim Tunison

    2009-01-01

    The management of plant invasions has typically focused on the removal of invading populations or control of existing widespread species to unspecified but lower levels. Invasive plant management typically has not involved active restoration of background vegetation to reduce the likelihood of invader reestablishment. Here, we argue that land managers could benefit...

  13. Using resistance and resilience concepts to reduce impacts of invasive annual grasses and altered fire regimes on the sagebrush ecosystem and greater sage-grouse: A strategic multi-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanne C. Chambers; David A. Pyke; Jeremy D. Maestas; Mike Pellant; Chad S. Boyd; Steven B. Campbell; Shawn Espinosa; Douglas W. Havlina; Kenneth E. Mayer; Amarina Wuenschel

    2014-01-01

    This Report provides a strategic approach for conservation of sagebrush ecosystems and Greater Sage- Grouse (sage-grouse) that focuses specifically on habitat threats caused by invasive annual grasses and altered fire regimes. It uses information on factors that influence (1) sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses and (2...

  14. Variations of selected soil properties in the grass fields invaded and uninvaded by invasive goldenrod (Solidago canadensis L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baranová Beáta

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Although the invasion of exotic plants has been recognised as the serious cause of the biodiversity loss and natural habitats degradation and threat to the ecosystems functions, just the little attention has been paid to the potential impacts of the goldenrod invasion on the soil properties. Equally, currently obtained results are contrary and ambiguous. We tested whether the grass fields invaded and uninvaded by Canadian goldenrod (Solidago canadensis L. differ in pH, soil moisture, organic carbon (Cox, humus and P, K and Mg contents and related the variations to the chosen environmental variables. We did not find significant distinctions of the studied types of habitats in the selected physico-chemical soil properties as well as the relation between the goldenrod invasion and the changes in soil properties. Nevertheless, whereas the soil reaction, soil moisture and Mg content were higher in the invaded soils, the Cox, humus and P and K contents were higher in the uninvaded ones. Doubtless, further attention need to be paid to this problem.

  15. Sparrow nest survival in relation to prescribed fire and woody plant invasion in a northern mixed-grass prairie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Robert K.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Grant, Todd A.; Derrig, James L.; Rubin, Cory S.; Kerns, Courtney K.

    2017-01-01

    Prescribed fire is used to reverse invasion by woody vegetation on grasslands, but managers often are uncertain whether influences of shrub and tree reduction outweigh potential effects of fire on nest survival of grassland birds. During the 2001–2003 breeding seasons, we examined relationships of prescribed fire and woody vegetation to nest survival of clay-colored sparrow (Spizella pallida) and Savannah sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis) in mixed-grass prairie at Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge in northwestern North Dakota, USA. We assessed relationships of nest survival to 1) recent fire history, in terms of number of breeding seasons (2, 3, or 4–5) since the last prescribed fire, and 2) prevalence of trees and tall (>1.5 m) shrubs in the landscape and of low (≤1.5 m) shrubs within 5 m of nests. Nest survival of both species exhibited distinct patterns related to age of the nest and day of year, but bore no relationship to fire history. Survival of clay-colored sparrow nests declined as the amount of trees and tall shrubs within 100 m increased, but we found no relationship to suggest nest parasitism by brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater) as an underlying mechanism. We found little evidence linking nest survival of Savannah sparrow to woody vegetation. Our results suggest that fire can be used to restore northern mixed-grass prairies without adversely affecting nest survival of ≥2 widespread passerine species. Survival of nests of clay-colored sparrow may increase when tall woody cover is reduced by fire. Our data lend support to the use of fire for reducing scattered patches of tall woody cover to enhance survival of nests of ≥1 grassland bird species in northern mixed-grass prairies, but further study is needed that incorporates experimental approaches and assessments of shorter term effects of fire on survival of nests of grassland passerines.

  16. The effect of nitrogen availability and water conditions on competition between a facultative CAM plant and an invasive grass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Kailiang; D'Odorico, Paolo; Carr, David E; Personius, Ashden; Collins, Scott L

    2017-10-01

    Plants with crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) are increasing their abundance in drylands worldwide. The drivers and mechanisms underlying the increased dominance of CAM plants and CAM expression (i.e., nocturnal carboxylation) in facultative CAM plants, however, remain poorly understood. We investigated how nutrient and water availability affected competition between Mesembryanthemum crystallinum (a model facultative CAM species) and the invasive C 3 grass Bromus mollis that co-occur in California's coastal grasslands. Specifically we investigated the extent to which water stress, nutrients, and competition affect nocturnal carboxylation in M. crystallinum . High nutrient and low water conditions favored M. crystallinum over B. mollis , in contrast to high water conditions. While low water conditions induced nocturnal carboxylation in 9-week-old individuals of M. crystallinum , in these low water treatments, a 66% reduction in nutrient applied over the entire experiment did not further enhance nocturnal carboxylation. In high water conditions M. crystallinum both alone and in association with B. mollis did not perform nocturnal carboxylation, regardless of the nutrient levels. Thus, nocturnal carboxylation in M. crystallinum was restricted by strong competition with B. mollis in high water conditions. This study provides empirical evidence of the competitive advantage of facultative CAM plants over grasses in drought conditions and of the restricted ability of M. crystallinum to use their photosynthetic plasticity (i.e., ability to switch to CAM behavior) to compete with grasses in well-watered conditions. We suggest that a high drought tolerance could explain the increased dominance of facultative CAM plants in a future environment with increased drought and nitrogen deposition, while the potential of facultative CAM plants such as M. crystallinum to expand to wet environments is expected to be limited.

  17. Loss of native herbaceous species due to woody plant encroachment facilitates the establishment of an invasive grass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alofs, Karen M; Fowler, Norma L

    2013-03-01

    Although negative relationships between diversity (frequently measured as species richness) and invasibility at neighborhood or community scales have often been reported, realistic natural diversity gradients have rarely been studied at this scale. We recreated a naturally occurring gradient in species richness to test the effects of species richness on community invasibility. In central Texas savannas, as the proportion of woody plants increases (a process known as woody plant encroachment), herbaceous habitat is both lost and fragmented, and native herbaceous species richness declines. We examined the effects of these species losses on invasibility in situ by removing species that occur less frequently in herbaceous patches as woody plant encroachment advances. This realistic species removal was accompanied by a parallel and equivalent removal of biomass with no changes in species richness. Over two springs, the nonnative bunchgrass Bothriochloa ischaemum germinated significantly more often in the biomass-removal treatment than in unmanipulated control plots, suggesting an effect of native plant density independent of diversity. Additionally, significantly more germination occurred in the species-removal treatment than in the biomass-removal treatment. Changes in species richness had a stronger effect on B. ischaemum germination than changes in plant density, demonstrating that niche-related processes contributed more to biotic resistance in this system than did species-neutral competitive interactions. Similar treatment effects were found on transplant growth. Thus we show that woody plant encroachment indirectly facilitates the establishment of an invasive grass by reducing native diversity. Although we found a negative relationship between species richness and invasibility at the scale of plots with similar composition and environmental conditions, we found a positive relationship between species richness and invasibility at larger scales. This apparent

  18. Characterization of polymorphic microsatellites for the invasive grass Microstegium vimineum (Poaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novy, Ari; Flory, S Luke; Honig, Joshua A; Bonos, Stacy; Hartman, Jean Marie

    2012-02-01

    Microsatellite markers were developed for the invasive plant Microstegium vimineum (Poaceae) to assess its population structure and to facilitate tracking of invasion expansion. Using 454 sequencing, 11 polymorphic and six monomorphic microsatellite primer sets were developed for M. vimineum. The primer sets were tested on individuals sampled from six populations in the United States and China. The polymorphic primers amplified di-, tri-, and tetranucleotide repeats with three to 10 alleles per locus. These markers will be useful for a variety of applications including tracking of invasion dynamics and population genetics studies.

  19. Response of the Invasive Grass Imperata cylindrica to Disturbance in the Southeastern Forests, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shibu Jose

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Imperata cylindrica is an invasive plant species that threatens diversity and forest productivity in southeastern ecosystems. We examined the effects of disturbance events, particularly fire and hurricane/salvage harvesting, to determine the effects on I. cylindrica abundance in longleaf pine (Pinus palustris forests in the Florida panhandle. Areas that were burned or had greater biomass removal following a hurricane had a greater number of I. cylindrica patches and larger patch size. These results highlight the importance of disturbance events on expanding invasive species populations in this region and are likely applicable for other invasive species as well. Monitoring and treatment should follow disturbance events to ensure that invasive species populations do not exceed unmanageable levels.

  20. Symbiosis in the Context of an Invasive, Non-Native Grass: Fungal Biodiversity and Student Engagement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehr, Gavin

    Grasslands in the western United States face severe environmental threats including those brought about by climate change, such as changes in precipitation regimes and altered fire cycles; land-use conversion and development; and the introduction, establishment, and spread of non-native species. Lehmann's lovegrass (Eragrostis lehmanniana) was introduced to the southwestern United States in the early 1900s. Since its introduction, it has become the dominant grass in the mid-elevation grasslands of southern Arizona, including the Santa Rita Experimental Range (SRER), where it has displaced native grasses including Arizona cottontop, three awns, and gramas. Like all plants in terrestrial ecosystems, this grass harbors fungal symbionts that can be important for its establishment and persistence. This thesis focuses on fungal symbionts of Lehmann's lovegrass and has two components. First, the diversity and distributions of endophytes in Lehmann's lovegrass are evaluated in the context of biotic and abiotic factors in the SRER. Culturing from roots and shoots of Lehmann's lovegrass at points beneath and outside the canopy of native mesquites, which are encroaching on grasslands over time, provides insight into how a single plant species can exhibit local variation in the composition of its symbionts. Second, the thesis is used as the basis for engagement of students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) through the development and implementation of classroom- and field activities centered on endophytes, which help high school students address core learning aims while also gaining real research experience. Engaging students in important questions relevant to their local environment can catalyze interest in science and help students cross the threshold into research. The contributions of such approaches with respect to learning not only fulfills key next-generation science standards and common core objectives, but provides students with a meaningful

  1. Tackling Contentious Invasive Plant Species: A Case Study of Buffel Grass in Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grice, Anthony C.; Friedel, Margaret H.; Marshall, Nadine A.; van Klinken, Rieks D.

    2012-02-01

    Introduced plants that have both production values and negative impacts can be contentious. Generally they are either treated as weeds and their use prohibited; or unfettered exploitation is permitted and land managers must individually contend with any negative effects. Buffel grass ( Cenchrus ciliaris) is contentious in Australia and there has been no attempt to broadly and systematically address the issues surrounding it. However, recent research indicates that there is some mutual acceptance by proponents and opponents of each others' perspectives and we contend that this provides the basis for a national approach. It would require thorough and on-going consultation with stakeholders and development of realistic goals that are applicable across a range of scales and responsive to regional differences in costs, benefits and socio-economic and biophysical circumstances. It would be necessary to clearly allocate responsibilities and ascertain the most appropriate balance between legislative and non-legislative mechanisms. A national approach could involve avoiding the introduction of additional genetic material, countering proliferation in regions where the species is sparse, preventing incursion into conservation reserves where it is absent, containing strategically located populations and managing communities to prevent or reduce dominance by buffel grass. This approach could be applied to other contentious plant species.

  2. Species’ traits help predict small mammal responses to habitat homogenization by an invasive grass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceradini, Joseph P.; Chalfoun, Anna D.

    2017-01-01

    Invasive plants can negatively affect native species, however, the strength, direction, and shape of responses may vary depending on the type of habitat alteration and the natural history of native species. To prioritize conservation of vulnerable species, it is therefore critical to effectively predict species’ responses to invasive plants, which may be facilitated by a framework based on species’ traits. We studied the population and community responses of small mammals and changes in habitat heterogeneity across a gradient of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) cover, a widespread invasive plant in North America. We live-trapped small mammals over two summers and assessed the effect of cheatgrass on native small mammal abundance, richness, and species-specific and trait-based occupancy, while accounting for detection probability and other key habitat elements. Abundance was only estimated for the most common species, deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). All species were pooled for the trait-based occupancy analysis to quantify the ability of small mammal traits (habitat association, mode of locomotion, and diet) to predict responses to cheatgrass invasion. Habitat heterogeneity decreased with cheatgrass cover. Deer mouse abundance increased marginally with cheatgrass. Species richness did not vary with cheatgrass, however, pocket mouse (Perognathus spp.) and harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys spp.) occupancy tended to decrease and increase, respectively, with cheatgrass cover, suggesting a shift in community composition. Cheatgrass had little effect on occupancy for deer mice, 13-lined ground squirrels (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), and Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii). Species’ responses to cheatgrass primarily corresponded with our a priori predictions based on species’ traits. The probability of occupancy varied significantly with a species’ habitat association but not with diet or mode of locomotion. When considered within the context of a rapid

  3. Removal of Invasive Fire-Prone Grasses to Increase Training Lands in the Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-09-01

    Boone Kauffman. U.S. Forest Service. Pacific Northwest Research Center. Hilo . Hawaii . SWCA, Inc. 39 SWCA also acknowledges Amy Brown Curtis...Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCBH), Marine Corps Training Area Bellows (MCTAB), Army installations Makua Valley, Schofield Barracks, Pohakuloa Training...Area, the Hawaii Army National Guard facility at Diamond Head Crater, and at the Naval Magazine on the Island of Guam. Invasive, fire-prone

  4. Modeling the Climate and Hydrological Controls of the Expansion of an Invasive Grass Over Southern Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathias, A.; Niu, G.; Zeng, X.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change has an effect on the resilience of ecosystems and the occurrence of ecological perturbations (e.g. spread of invasive species, wildfires). Changes in vegetation in turn can interrupt regional scale climate patterns and alter the spatial and temporal propagation of ecological disturbances. Understanding the controls of vegetation change are essential for predicting future changes, and for setting conservation and restoration targets. Vegetation change in transition zones between ecological regions is a significant indicator of future shifts in the composition of neighboring plant communities. The Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed is in a grassland-shrubland transition zone between the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Desert in Southern Arizona. During the past decade, at some sites the cover of the invasive Lehmann lovegrass (Eragrostis lehmanniana) drastically increased and the abundance of native vegetation decreased, causing a major decline in biodiversity. Focusing on a catchment scale (Kendall Site), we used an individual based vegetation model (ECOTONE) and a coupled vegetation-3D surface/subsurface hydrology model (ECOTONE-CATHY) to simulate vegetation change. We set up the models with soil and climatological data (NLDAS and AmeriFlux), incorporated initial conditions of species and biomass distribution and species parameters for the site. Using ECOTONE we tested our hypothesis that a combination of dry years and subsequent wet period caused Lehmann lovegass to have advantage over the natives. In ECOTONE species composition and species distribution of plant communities arise from dynamic interactions of individual plants with species specific traits through intra- and interspecific competition for resources (H2O, nitrogen) and their interaction with the environment (precipitation and temperature). Our results indicate that the competitive advantage of Lehmann lovegrass stems from its ability to withstand dryer conditions during establishment and due to

  5. Disease protection and allelopathic interactions of seed-transmitted endophytic pseudomonads of invasive reed grass (Phragmites australis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, James F.; Kingsley, Katheryn I; Kowalski, Kurt P.; Irizarry, Ivelisse; Micci, April; Soares, Marcos Antonio; Bergen, Marshall S.

    2018-01-01

    Background and aimsNon-native Phragmites australis (haplotype M) is an invasive grass that decreases biodiversity and produces dense stands. We hypothesized that seeds of Phragmites carry microbes that improve seedling growth, defend against pathogens and maximize capacity of seedlings to compete with other plants.MethodsWe isolated bacteria from seeds of Phragmites, then evaluated representatives for their capacities to become intracellular in root cells, and their effects on: 1.) germination rates and seedling growth, 2.) susceptibility to damping-off disease, and 3.) mortality and growth of competitor plant seedlings (dandelion (Taraxacum officionale F. H. Wigg) and curly dock (Rumex crispus L.)).ResultsTen strains (of 23 total) were identified and characterized; seven were identified as Pseudomonas spp. Strains Sandy LB4 (Pseudomonas fluorescens) and West 9 (Pseudomonas sp.) entered root meristems and became intracellular. These bacteria improved seed germination in Phragmites and increased seedling root branching in Poa annua. They increased plant growth and protected plants from damping off disease. Sandy LB4 increased mortality and reduced growth rates in seedlings of dandelion and curly dock.ConclusionsPhragmites plants associate with endophytes to increase growth and disease resistance, and release bacteria into the soil to create an environment that is favorable to their seedlings and less favorable to competitor plants.

  6. Role of fire in the germination ecology of fountain grass (Pennisetum setaceum), an invasive African bunchgrass in Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edith N. Adkins; Susan Cordell; Donald R. Drake

    2011-01-01

    Field and laboratory studies were carried out to test factors expected to be relevant for the germination of fountain grass: (1) light; (2) emergence of fountain grass seedlings from depths of 0, 2.5, and 5 cm; (3) fire passing over exposed and buried seeds; (4) laboratory heat treatment mimicking exposure to grass fire. Both fire in the field and heat applied in the...

  7. Soils mediate the impact of fine woody debris on invasive and native grasses as whole trees are mechanically shredded into firebreaks in piñon-juniper woodlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aanderud, Zachary T.; Schoolmaster, Donald R.; Rigby, Deborah; Bybee, Jordon; Campbell, Tayte; Roundy, Bruce A.

    2017-01-01

    To stem wildfires, trees are being mechanically shredded into firebreaks with the resulting fine woody debris (FWD) potentially exerting immense control over soil and plants. We linked FWD-induced changes in microbial activity and nutrient availability to the frequency of Bromus tectorum and three native, perennial grasses across 31 piñon-juniper woodlands, UT, USA. Using a series of mixed models, we found that FWD increased the frequency of three of the four grasses by at least 12%. Deep, as opposed to shallow, soils mediated frequencies following FWD additions but only partially explained the variation in Bromus and Pseudoroegneria spicata. Although fertile areas associated with tree-islands elicited no response, FWD-induced increases in nitrogen mineralization in deep soils (15–17 cm) caused the frequency of the exotic and Pseudoroegneria to rise. Higher phosphorus availability in FWD-covered surface soils (0–2 cm) had no impact on grasses. FWD altered deep soil respiration, and deep and shallow microbial biomass structuring Pseudoroegneria frequencies, suggesting that microorganism themselves regulated Pseudoroegneria. The positive effects of FWD on grass frequencies intensified over time for natives but diminished for Bromus. Our results demonstrate that microorganisms in deeper soils helped mediate species-specific responses to disturbance both facilitating exotic invasion and promoting native establishment.

  8. Invasibility of a nutrient-poor pasture through resident and non-resident herbs is controlled by litter, gap size and propagule pressure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R Lutz Eckstein

    Full Text Available Since inference concerning the relative effects of propagule pressure, biotic interactions, site conditions and species traits on the invasibility of plant communities is limited, we carried out a field experiment to study the role of these factors for absolute and relative seedling emergence in three resident and three non-resident confamilial herb species on a nutrient-poor temperate pasture. We set up a factorial field experiment with two levels each of the factors litter cover (0 and 400 g m(-2, gap size (0.01 and 0.1 m(2 and propagule pressure (5 and 50 seeds and documented soil temperature, soil water content and relative light availability. Recruitment was recorded in spring and autumn 2010 and in spring 2011 to cover initial seedling emergence, establishment after summer drought and final establishment after the first winter. Litter alleviated temperature and moisture conditions and had positive effects on proportional and absolute seedling emergence during all phases of recruitment. Large gaps presented competition-free space with high light availability but showed higher temperature amplitudes and lower soil moisture. Proportional and absolute seedling recruitment was significantly higher in large than in small gaps. In contrast, propagule pressure facilitated absolute seedling emergence but had no effects on proportional emergence or the chance for successful colonisation. Despite significantly higher initial seedling emergence of resident than non-resident species, seed mass and other species-specific traits may be better predictors for idiosyncratic variation in seedling establishment than status. Our data support the fluctuating resource hypothesis and demonstrate that the reserve effect of seeds may facilitate seedling emergence. The direct comparison of propagule pressure with other environmental factors showed that propagule pressure affects absolute seedling abundance, which may be crucial for species that depend on other

  9. Invasive Earthworms and Forest Successional Stage Interact to Impact Plant Litter Inputs and Particulate Organic Matter Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    The landscapes colonized by invasive earthworms in the eastern U.S. are often patchworks of forest stands in various stages of successional development. We established six field sites in tulip poplar dominated forests in the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center Forest (SERC), MD, that span you...

  10. Strong genetic differentiation in the invasive annual grass Bromus tectorum across the Mojave-Great Basin ecological transition zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susan E. Meyer; Elizabeth A. Leger; Desiree R. Eldon; Craig E. Coleman

    2016-01-01

    Bromus tectorum, an inbreeding annual grass, is a dominant invader in sagebrush steppe habitat in North America. It is also common in warm and salt deserts, displaying a larger environmental tolerance than most native species. We tested the hypothesis that a suite of habitat-specific B. tectorum lineages dominates warm desert habitats. We sampled 30 B....

  11. Changes in salt-marsh carabid assemblages after an invasion by the native grass Elymus athericus (Link Kerguélen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita Georges

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available As a result of an invasion by the native grass Elymus athericus (Link Kerguélen (Poaceae in the last 10 years, a major change in vegetation cover has occurred in salt marshes of the Mont Saint-Michel bay, Western France. The impact of such an invasion on carabid assemblages, a dominant group of terrestrial arthropods in these habitats and containing several stenotopic species, is investigated here. In our study site, carabid data are available from 1983 and 1984, allowing a comparison of species distribution ranges in salt marshes before (1983–1984 and after (2002 the E. athericus invasion. A total of 16,867 adults belonging to 40 species were caught. By considering the presence-absence of species shared between studies, we show that the invasion by E. athericus promoted the progression of non-coastal species (mainly Pterostichus s.l. spp.. This did however not interfere with resident species distributions, finally resulting in higher carabid species richness in the entire area. The species composition and abundances of carabid assemblages were also compared between natural and invaded stations in 2002. The main result is that abundances of some halophilic species decreased in one invaded plot (in case of Pogonus chalceus (Marsham 1802 whereas the opposite pattern was observed for other species (e.g., Bembidion minimum (Fabricius 1792. Invaded habitats were characterized by lower percentages of halophilic species and higher total species richness.

  12. Evidence for recent adaptative evolution in mid-Atlantic populations of an invasive exotic grass, Microstegium vimineum, Japanese stiltgrass

    Science.gov (United States)

    The establishment and spread of invasive plants has often been associated with a ‘general-purpose genotype,’ and a corresponding high degree of phenotypic plasticity when introduced to a new environment. However, changes in evolutionary potential of invasive species need to be considered in additio...

  13. Equilibrium and kinetic studies of copper biosorption by dead Ceriporia lacerata biomass isolated from the litter of an invasive plant in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiaona; Li, Airong; Long, Mingzhong; Tian, Xingjun

    2015-01-01

    Ceriporia lacerata, a strain of white-rot fungus isolated from the litter of an invasive plant (Solidago canadensis) in China, was little known about its properties and utilization. In this work, the copper(II) biosorption characteristics of formaldehyde inactivated C. lacerata biomass were examined as a function of initial pH, initial copper(II) concentration and contact time, and the adsorptive equilibrium and kinetics were simulated, too. The optimum pH was found to be 6.0 at experimental conditions of initial copper(II) concentration 100 mg/L, biomass dose 2 g/L, contact time 12 h, shaking rate 150 r/min and temperature 25°C. Biosorption equilibrium cost about 1 hour at experimental conditions of pH 6.0, initial copper(II) concentration 100 mg/L, C. lacerata dose 2 g/L, shaking rate 150 r/min and temperature 25°C. At optimum pH 6.0, highest copper(II) biosorption amounts were 6.79 and 7.76 mg/g for initial copper(II) concentration of 100 and 200 mg/L, respectively (with other experimental parameters of C. lacerata dose 2 g/L, shaking rate 150 r/min and temperature 25°C). The pseudo second-order adsorptive model gave the best adjustment for copper(II) biosorption kinetics. The equilibrium data fitted very well to both Langmuir and Freundlich adsorptive isotherm models. Without further acid or alkali treatment for improving adsorption properties, formaldehyde inactivated C. lacerata biomass possesses good biosorption characteristics on copper(II) removal from aqueous solutions.

  14. A potential conflict between preserving regional plant diversity and biotic resistance to an invasive grass, Microstegium vimineum

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. Stephen Brewer

    2010-01-01

    The relevance of diversity-biotic resistance studies to conservation of biodiversity could be improved by simultaneously examining the drivers of regional diversity and their effects on local species diversity and invasion. Using path analysis, I examined direct and indirect effects of various abiotic factors (i.e., flooding, treefall gaps, soil texture, proximity to...

  15. Transgenerational soil-mediated differences between plants experienced or naïve to a grass invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deck, Anna; Muir, Adrianna; Strauss, Sharon

    2013-10-01

    Invasive species may undergo rapid change as they invade. Native species persisting in invaded areas may also experience rapid change over this short timescale relative to native populations in uninvaded areas. We investigated the response of the native Achillea millefolium to soil from Holcus lanatus-invaded and uninvaded areas, and we sought to determine whether differential responses between A. millefolium from invaded (invader experienced) and uninvaded (invader naïve) areas were mediated by soil community changes. Plants grown from seed from experienced and naïve areas responded differently to invaded and uninvaded soil with respect to germination time, biomass, and height. Overall, experienced plants grew faster and taller than their naïve counterparts. Naïve native plants showed negative feedbacks with their home soil and positive feedbacks with invaded soil; experienced plants were less responsive to soil differences. Our results suggest that native plants naïve to invasion may be more sensitive to soil communities than experienced plants, consistent with recent studies. While differences between naïve and experienced plants are transgenerational, our design cannot differentiate between differences that are genetically based, plastic, or both. Regardless, our results highlight the importance of seed source and population history in restoration, emphasizing the restoration potential of experienced seed sources.

  16. Using a C4 Invasive Grass to Isolate the Role of Detrital Carbon versus Rhizodeposit Carbon in Supplying Soil Carbon Pools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokol, N.; Bradford, M.

    2016-12-01

    Plant inputs are the primary sources of carbon (C) to soil organic carbon (SOC) pools. Historically, detrital plant sources were thought to dominate C supply to SOC pools. An emerging body of research highlights the previously underestimated role of root exudates and other rhizodeposits. However, few experimental field studies have directly tracked the relative contributions of rhizodeposits versus detritial C inputs into different SOC pools, due to how methodologically challenging they are to measure in a field setting. Here, I present the first 3 years of data from an experimental field study of the prolific, C4 invasive grass species Microstegium vimineum. I use its unique isotopic signature in plots manipulated to contain detrital-only and rhizodeposit-only inputs, to track their relative contributions into microbial biomass C, particulate organic C (POC; >53 um) and mineral-associated organic C (MIN C; emerging theory on the primacy of the belowground, root-associated pathway in supplying C to soil C pools, this increase is generally assumed to be through the MIN C pool due to 1) the lower molecular weight of rhizodeposit compounds, and 2) the close physical association between rhizodeposits and soil mineral surfaces. Our results point to an underappreciated, central role of the POM C pool as a passageway for both detrital and rhizodeposit C inputs to the soil.

  17. Fungal disease prevention in seedlings of rice (Oryza sativa) and other grasses by growth-promoting seed-associated endophytic bacteria from invasive Phragmites australis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Satish K.; Kingsley, Kathryn L.; Bergen, Marshall S.; Kowalski, Kurt P.; White, James F.

    2018-01-01

    Non-cultivated plants carry microbial endophytes that may be used to enhance development and disease resistance of crop species where growth-promoting and protective microbes may have been lost. During seedling establishment, seedlings may be infected by several fungal pathogens that are seed or soil borne. Several species of Fusarium, Pythium and other water moulds cause seed rots during germination. Fusariumblights of seedlings are also very common and significantly affect seedling development. In the present study we screened nine endophytic bacteria isolated from the seeds of invasive Phragmites australis by inoculating onto rice, Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon), or annual bluegrass (Poa annua) seeds to evaluate plant growth promotion and protection from disease caused by Fusarium oxysporum. We found that three bacteria belonging to genus Pseudomonas spp. (SLB4-P. fluorescens, SLB6-Pseudomonas sp. and SY1-Pseudomonassp.) promoted seedling development, including enhancement of root and shoot growth, and stimulation of root hair formation. These bacteria were also found to increase phosphate solubilization in in vitro experiments. Pseudomonas sp. (SY1) significantly protected grass seedlings from Fusarium infection. In co-culture experiments, strain SY1 strongly inhibited fungal pathogens with 85.71% growth inhibition of F. oxysporum, 86.33% growth inhibition of Curvularia sp. and 82.14% growth inhibition of Alternaria sp. Seedlings previously treated with bacteria were found much less infected by F. oxysporum in comparison to non-treated controls. On microscopic observation we found that bacteria appeared to degrade fungal mycelia actively. Metabolite products of strain SY1 in agar were also found to inhibit fungal growth on nutrient media. Pseudomonas sp. (SY1) was found to produce antifungal volatiles. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification using specific primers for pyrrolnitirin synthesis and HCN (hydrogen cyanide) production

  18. Variação mensal da deposição de serapilheira em povoamento de Pinus taeda L. em área de campo nativo em Cambará do Sul-RS Monthly variation of litter deposition in Pinus taeda L. stand in native grass area in Cambará do Sul-RS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcio Viera

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Objetivou-se com este trabalho avaliar a deposição de serapilheira em Pinus taeda L., implantado em área de campo nativo, durante um período de três anos (5º ao 7º ano de idade da floresta, no Município de Cambará do Sul, na região dos Campos de Cima da Serra, no Rio Grande do Sul. Foram alocadas quatro parcelas de 18 m x 50 m, de forma aleatória, e nelas foram distribuídos 20 coletores de serapilheira de 1 m² (cinco em cada. A serapilheira interceptada nos coletores foi coletada mensalmente entre abril/2004 e março/2007. Após cada coleta, a serapilheira foi posta em estufa para secagem e determinação do peso de matéria seca. A deposição média anual de serapilheira foi de 2.545,1 kg ha-1, tendo a seguinte ordem estacional média: outono > verão > inverno > primavera. A umidade relativa foi a única variável climática que apresentou correlação significativa (r = 0,365; pThis study had as its objective to evaluate the litter deposition in Pinus taeda L. planted in native grass areas, during three years (5º to 7º year after forest planting, in Cambará do Sul, RS. Four plots with 18 m x 50 m were randomly allocated and 20 litter collectors with 1 m² were distributed in the plots (5 in each one. The litter was collected monthly between April /2004 and march/2007. After each collection, the litter was dried in an oven to determine the dried weight. The average annual litter deposition was 2,545.1 kg ha-1, with the following seasonal order: autumn > summer > winter > spring. The relative humidity was the only meteorological variable with significant correlation (r=0.365; p<0.05.

  19. Plant litter chemistry alters the content and composition of organic carbon associated with soil mineral and aggregate fractions in invaded ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamura, Mioko; Suseela, Vidya; Simpson, Myrna; Powell, Brian; Tharayil, Nishanth

    2017-10-01

    Through the input of disproportionate quantities of chemically distinct litter, invasive plants may potentially influence the fate of organic matter associated with soil mineral and aggregate fractions in some of the ecosystems they invade. Although context dependent, these native ecosystems subjected to prolonged invasion by exotic plants may be instrumental in distinguishing the role of plant-microbe-mineral interactions from the broader edaphic and climatic influences on the formation of soil organic matter (SOM). We hypothesized that the soils subjected to prolonged invasion by an exotic plant that input recalcitrant litter (Japanese knotweed, Polygonum cuspidatum) would have a greater proportion of plant-derived carbon (C) in the aggregate fractions, as compared with that in adjacent soil inhabited by native vegetation that input labile litter, whereas the soils under an invader that input labile litter (kudzu, Pueraria lobata) would have a greater proportion of microbial-derived C in the silt-clay fraction, as compared with that in adjacent soils that receive recalcitrant litter. At the knotweed site, the higher C content in soils under P. cuspidatum, compared with noninvaded soils inhabited by grasses and forbs, was limited to the macroaggregate fraction, which was abundant in plant biomarkers. The noninvaded soils at this site had a higher abundance of lignins in mineral and microaggregate fractions and suberin in the macroaggregate fraction, partly because of the greater root density of the native species, which might have had an overriding influence on the chemistry of the above-ground litter input. At the kudzu site, soils under P. lobata had lower C content across all size fractions at a 0-5 cm soil depth despite receiving similar amounts of Pinus litter. Contrary to our prediction, the noninvaded soils receiving recalcitrant Pinus litter had a similar abundance of plant biomarkers across both mineral and aggregate fractions, potentially because of

  20. Correlation between the morphogenetic types of litter and their properties in bog birch forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efremova, T. T.; Efremov, S. P.; Avrova, A. F.

    2010-08-01

    A formalized arrangement of morphogenetic types of litter according to the physicochemical parameters provided their significant grouping in three genetic associations. The litter group (highly decomposed + moderately decomposed) is confined to the tall-grass group of bog birch forests. The rhizomatous (roughly decomposed) litter is formed in the sedge-reed grass bog birch forests. The litter group (peaty + peatified + peat) is associated with the bog-herbaceous-moss group of forest types. The genetic associations of the litters (a) reliably characterize the edaphic conditions of bog birch forests and (b)correspond to formation of the peat of certain ecological groups. We found highly informative the acid-base parameters, the exchangeable cations (Ca2+ + Mg2+) and the total potential acidity, which differentiated the genetic associations of litter practically with 100% probability. The expediency of studying litters under groups of forest types rather than under separate types of bog birch forests was demonstrated.

  1. Effects of tree leaf litter, deer fecal pellets, and soil properties on growth of an introduced earthworm (Lumbricus terrestris): Implications for invasion dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassidy N. Yatso; Erik A. Lilleskov

    2016-01-01

    Invasive earthworm communities are expanding into previously earthworm-free forests of North America, producing profound ecosystem changes. Lumbricus terrestris is an invasive anecic earthworm that consumes a large portion of the detritus on the soil surface, eliminating forest floor organic horizons and reducing soil organic matter. Two mesocosm...

  2. Estoque de serapilheira e fertilidade do solo em pastagem degradada de Brachiaria decumbens após implantação de leguminosas arbustivas e arbóreas forrageiras Soil litter stock and fertility after planting leguminous shrubs and forage trees on degraded signal grass pasture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Barbosa Silva

    2013-04-01

    secondary effects on soil fertility, such as acidification or nutrient movement from deeper to the surface soil layers. This study evaluated the soil litter stock and fertility of degraded Brachiaria decumbens pastures after planting leguminous shrubs and forage trees. For this purpose, we sampled (March 2010 degraded Brachiaria decumbens pasture planted in July 2008 in an intercropping experiment with sabiá (Mimosa caesalpiniaefolia, leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala, mororó (Bauhinia cheilantha and gliricidia (Gliricidia sepium, as well as N-fertilized and unfertilized brachiaria. Soil and litter was sampled (layers 0-10, 10-20 and 20-40 cm in three transects, at alternating points covered by grasses and by legumes, totaling seven composite samples per plot to determine soil pH, P, K , Ca, Mg, and Al and calculate sum of bases, effective cation exchange capacity and aluminum saturation. Litter was visually separated in legumes, grasses and unidentified material to quantify dry matter, organic matter, N, P, C, acid-detergent fiber, and lignin. The use of legumes increased the levels of total N in litter and reduced the C: N ratios, especially of gliricidia and sabiá, although the lignin levels in the latter were high. There was a significant effect of legume soil cover, with no differences between them, on pH and K (layer 0-10 cm and on pH, K and Al (layer 10-20 cm.

  3. Litter Controls Earthworm-Mediated Carbon and Nitrogen Transformations in Soil from Temperate Riparian Buffers

    OpenAIRE

    Maria Kernecker; Joann K. Whalen; Robert L. Bradley

    2014-01-01

    Nutrient cycling in riparian buffers is partly influenced by decomposition of crop, grass, and native tree species litter. Nonnative earthworms in riparian soils in southern Quebec are expected to speed the processes of litter decomposition and nitrogen (N) mineralization, increasing carbon (C) and N losses in gaseous forms or via leachate. A 5-month microcosm experiment evaluated the effect of Aporrectodea turgida on the decomposition of 3 litter types (deciduous leaves, reed canarygrass, an...

  4. Response of dominant grass and shrub species to water manipulation: an ecophysiological basis for shrub invasion in a Chihuahuan Desert grassland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Throop, Heather L; Reichmann, Lara G; Sala, Osvaldo E; Archer, Steven R

    2012-06-01

    Increases in woody vegetation and declines in grasses in arid and semi-arid ecosystems have occurred globally since the 1800s, but the mechanisms driving this major land-cover change remain uncertain and controversial. Working in a shrub-encroached grassland in the northern Chihuahuan Desert where grasses and shrubs typically differ in leaf-level nitrogen allocation, photosynthetic pathway, and root distribution, we asked if differences in leaf-level ecophysiology could help explain shrub proliferation. We predicted that the relative performance of grasses and shrubs would vary with soil moisture due to the different morphological and physiological characteristics of the two life-forms. In a 2-year experiment with ambient, reduced, and enhanced precipitation during the monsoon season, respectively, the encroaching C(3) shrub (honey mesquite Prosopis glandulosa) consistently and substantially outperformed the historically dominant C(4) grass (black grama Bouteloua eriopoda) in terms of photosynthetic rates while also maintaining a more favorable leaf water status. These differences persisted across a wide range of soil moisture conditions, across which mesquite photosynthesis was decoupled from leaf water status and moisture in the upper 50 cm of the soil profile. Mesquite's ability to maintain physiologically active leaves for a greater fraction of the growing season than black grama potentially amplifies and extends the importance of physiological differences. These physiological and phenological differences may help account for grass displacement by shrubs in drylands. Furthermore, the greater sensitivity of the grass to low soil moisture suggests that grasslands may be increasingly susceptible to shrub encroachment in the face of the predicted increases in drought intensity and frequency in the desert of the southwestern USA.

  5. Marine Anthropogenic Litter

    OpenAIRE

    Bergmann, Melanie; Gutow, Lars; Klages, Michael

    2015-01-01

    This book describes how manmade litter, primarily plastic, has spread into the remotest parts of the oceans and covers all aspects of this pollution problem from the impacts on wildlife and human health to socio-economic and political issues. Marine litter is a prime threat to marine wildlife, habitats and food webs worldwide. The book illustrates how advanced technologies from deep-sea research, microbiology and mathematic modelling as well as classic beach litter counts by volunteers co...

  6. Grass genomes

    OpenAIRE

    Bennetzen, Jeffrey L.; SanMiguel, Phillip; Chen, Mingsheng; Tikhonov, Alexander; Francki, Michael; Avramova, Zoya

    1998-01-01

    For the most part, studies of grass genome structure have been limited to the generation of whole-genome genetic maps or the fine structure and sequence analysis of single genes or gene clusters. We have investigated large contiguous segments of the genomes of maize, sorghum, and rice, primarily focusing on intergenic spaces. Our data indicate that much (>50%) of the maize genome is composed of interspersed repetitive DNAs, primarily nested retrotransposons that in...

  7. Do soil organisms affect aboveground litter decomposition in the semiarid Patagonian steppe, Argentina?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araujo, Patricia I; Yahdjian, Laura; Austin, Amy T

    2012-01-01

    Surface litter decomposition in arid and semiarid ecosystems is often faster than predicted by climatic parameters such as annual precipitation or evapotranspiration, or based on standard indices of litter quality such as lignin or nitrogen concentrations. Abiotic photodegradation has been demonstrated to be an important factor controlling aboveground litter decomposition in aridland ecosystems, but soil fauna, particularly macrofauna such as termites and ants, have also been identified as key players affecting litter mass loss in warm deserts. Our objective was to quantify the importance of soil organisms on surface litter decomposition in the Patagonian steppe in the absence of photodegradative effects, to establish the relative importance of soil organisms on rates of mass loss and nitrogen release. We estimated the relative contribution of soil fauna and microbes to litter decomposition of a dominant grass using litterboxes with variable mesh sizes that excluded groups of soil fauna based on size class (10, 2, and 0.01 mm), which were placed beneath shrub canopies. We also employed chemical repellents (naphthalene and fungicide). The exclusion of macro- and mesofauna had no effect on litter mass loss over 3 years (P = 0.36), as litter decomposition was similar in all soil fauna exclusions and naphthalene-treated litter. In contrast, reduction of fungal activity significantly inhibited litter decomposition (P soil fauna have been mentioned as a key control of litter decomposition in warm deserts, biogeographic legacies and temperature limitation may constrain the importance of these organisms in temperate aridlands, particularly in the southern hemisphere.

  8. Weaning and separation stress: maternal motivation decreases with litter age and litter size in farmed mink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Malmkvist, Jens; Sørensen, Dennis Dam; Larsen, Torben

    2016-01-01

    and maternal motivation around the time of weaning and separation. Therefore, we investigated effects of separating the dam from the litter using brown first-parity farm mink dams (n = 374) taken away from the litter either day 49 ± 1 (7w, n = 185) or day 56 ± 1 (8w, n = 189) after birth. The aim...... was to investigate whether the dams experienced stress/had a different motivation to be reunited with the litter after7 and 8 weeks, estimated by non-invasive determination of cortisol (FCM: Faecal Cortisol Metabolites)and dam behaviour including calls the first week after separation (D0: Day of removal, D1: next.......024). We interpret these results as a higher maternal motivation in dams at 7 weeks than at 8 weeks after birth. Additionally, the separation-induced calling in dams decreased with increasing litter size (P = 0.022). Thus in addition to litter age, the size of the litter is important for the maternal...

  9. Litter materials and the incidence of carcass lesions in broilers chickens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RG Garcia

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of different litter materials on litter compaction, broiler feathering and the incidence of carcass lesions. In the experiment, 3240 one-day-old Ross® chicks were selected by sex and distributed according to a completely randomized experimental design in a 2 x 6 factorial arrangement (two sex and six litter materials. The following litter materials were used: wood shavings, rice husks, chopped Napier grass, 50% sugar cane bagasse plus 50% wood shavings, 50% sugar cane bagasse plus 50% rice husks, and pure sugar cane bagasse. Litter compaction was weekly assessed using a penetrometer. On days 21, 35 and 42 of the experimental period, feathering on the back and legs was scored according to a 0 - 10 scale. On day 42, birds were slaughtered and the presence of bruises, scratches and footpad lesions was recorded. Litter material had no effect on bird feathering. Carcass lesions (scratches, bruises and footpad lesions were influenced by the litter material evaluated. Birds reared on sugarcane bagasse and chopped Napier grass presented more scratches, bruises and footpad lesions than the others. Dermatitis was more evident in birds reared on sugarcane bagasse, chopped Napier grass and the combination of litter materials. It was found that males presented higher incidence of dermatitis and footpad lesions than females. Each litter material presented different compaction degrees, which increased along the experimental period. Sugarcane bagasse, chopped Napier grass and the combination of bedding materials presented the highest degree of compaction, compared with wood shavings and rice husks.

  10. Environmentally friendly animal litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chett, Boxley; McKelvie, Jessica

    2013-08-20

    A method of making an animal litter that includes geopolymerized ash, wherein, the animal litter is made from a quantity of a pozzolanic ash mixed with a sufficient quantity of water and an alkaline activator to initiate a geopolymerization reaction that forms geopolymerized ash. After the geopolymerized ash is formed, it is dried, broken into particulates, and sieved to a desired size. These geopolymerized ash particulates are used to make a non-clumping or clumping animal litter. Odor control may be accomplished with the addition of a urease inhibitor, pH buffer, an odor eliminating agent, and/or fragrance.

  11. Litter Controls Earthworm-Mediated Carbon and Nitrogen Transformations in Soil from Temperate Riparian Buffers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Kernecker

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Nutrient cycling in riparian buffers is partly influenced by decomposition of crop, grass, and native tree species litter. Nonnative earthworms in riparian soils in southern Quebec are expected to speed the processes of litter decomposition and nitrogen (N mineralization, increasing carbon (C and N losses in gaseous forms or via leachate. A 5-month microcosm experiment evaluated the effect of Aporrectodea turgida on the decomposition of 3 litter types (deciduous leaves, reed canarygrass, and soybean stem residue. Earthworms increased CO2 and N2O losses from microcosms with soybean residue, by 112% and 670%, respectively, but reduced CO2 and N2O fluxes from microcosms with reed canarygrass by 120% and 220%, respectively. Litter type controlled the CO2 flux (soybean ≥ deciduous-mix litter = reed canarygrass > no litter and the N2O flux (soybean ≥ no litter ≥ reed canarygrass > deciduous-mix litter. However, in the presence of earthworms, there was a slight increase in C and N gaseous losses of C and N relative to their losses via leachate, across litter treatments. We conclude that litter type determines the earthworm-mediated decomposition effect, highlighting the importance of vegetation management in controlling C and N losses from riparian buffers to the environment.

  12. The impacts of Phalaris arundinacea (reed canary grass) invasion on wetland plant richness in the Oregon Coast Range, USA, depend on beavers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perkins, T.; Wilson, M.

    2005-01-01

    Invasive plants can threaten diversity and ecosystem function. We examined the relationship between the invasive Phalaris arundinacea (reed canarygrass) and species richness in beaver wetlands in Oregon, USA. Four basins (drainages) were chosen and three sites each of beaver impoundments, unimpounded areas and areas upstream of debris jams were randomly chosen in each basin for further study (n = 36). Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) showed that the relationship between Phalaris and species richness differed significantly (p = 0.01) by site type. Dam sites (beaver impoundments) exhibited a strong inverse relationship between Phalaris and species richness (bD = a??0.15), with one species lost for each 7% increase in Phalaris cover. In contrast, there was essentially no relationship between Phalaris cover and species richness in jam sites (debris jam impoundments formed by flooding; bJ = +0.01) and unimpounded sites (bU = a??0.03). The cycle of beaver impoundment and abandonment both disrupts the native community and provides an ideal environment for Phalaris, which once established tends to exclude development of herbaceous communities and limits species richness. Because beaver wetlands are a dominant wetland type in the Coast Range, Phalaris invasion presents a real threat to landscape heterogeneity and ecosystem function in the region.

  13. The carbon fertilization effect over a century of anthropogenic CO2 emissions: higher intracellular CO2 and more drought resistance among invasive and native grass species contrasts with increased water use efficiency for woody plants in the US Southwest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Brandon L; Hanson, David T; Lowrey, Timothy K; Sharp, Zachary D

    2017-02-01

    From 1890 to 2015, anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions have increased atmospheric CO 2 concentrations from 270 to 400 mol mol -1 . The effect of increased carbon emissions on plant growth and reproduction has been the subject of study of free-air CO 2 enrichment (FACE) experiments. These experiments have found (i) an increase in internal CO 2 partial pressure (c i ) alongside acclimation of photosynthetic capacity, (ii) variable decreases in stomatal conductance, and (iii) that increases in yield do not increase commensurate with CO 2 concentrations. Our data set, which includes a 115-year-long selection of grasses collected in New Mexico since 1892, is consistent with an increased c i as a response to historical CO 2 increase in the atmosphere, with invasive species showing the largest increase. Comparison with Palmer Drought Sensitivity Index (PDSI) for New Mexico indicates a moderate correlation with Δ 13 C (r 2  = 0.32, P < 0.01) before 1950, with no correlation (r 2  = 0.00, P = 0.91) after 1950. These results indicate that increased c i may have conferred some drought resistance to these grasses through increased availability of CO 2 in the event of reduced stomatal conductance in response to short-term water shortage. Comparison with C 3 trees from arid environments (Pinus longaeva and Pinus edulis in the US Southwest) as well as from wetter environments (Bromus and Poa grasses in New Mexico) suggests differing responses based on environment; arid environments in New Mexico see increased intrinsic water use efficiency (WUE) in response to historic elevated CO 2 while wetter environments see increased c i . This study suggests that (i) the observed increases in c i in FACE experiments are consistent with historical CO 2 increases and (ii) the CO 2 increase influences plant sensitivity to water shortage, through either increased WUE or c i in arid and wet environments, respectively. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Weaning and separation stress: maternal motivation decreases with litter age and litter size in farmed mink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Malmkvist, Jens; Sørensen, Dennis Dam; Larsen, Torben

    2016-01-01

    was to investigate whether the dams experienced stress/had a different motivation to be reunited with the litter after7 and 8 weeks, estimated by non-invasive determination of cortisol (FCM: Faecal Cortisol Metabolites)and dam behaviour including calls the first week after separation (D0: Day of removal, D1: next......The optimal timing of separating the mink dam from the litter is suggested to be a balance between the partly conflicting needs of the mother and the kits. Early removal of the dam or partial removal of the litter may protect the dam against exhaustion. Little is, however, known about dam stress...... and maternal motivation around the time of weaning and separation. Therefore, we investigated effects of separating the dam from the litter using brown first-parity farm mink dams (n = 374) taken away from the litter either day 49 ± 1 (7w, n = 185) or day 56 ± 1 (8w, n = 189) after birth. The aim...

  15. Seasonal variation of soluble carbohydrates and starch in Echinolaena inflexa, a native grass species from the Brazilian savanna, and in the invasive grass Melinis minutiflora Variações sazonais de carboidratos solúveis e amido em Echinolaena inflexa, uma espécie nativa do cerrado, e na gramínea invasora Melinis minutiflora

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Souza

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Echinolaena inflexa (Poir. Chase is an abundant C3 grass species with high biomass production in the Brazilian savanna (cerrado; Melinis minutiflora Beauv. is an African C4 forage grass widespread in cerrado and probably displacing some native herbaceous species. In the present work, we analysed seasonally the content and composition of soluble carbohydrates, the starch amounts and the above-ground biomass (phytomass of E. inflexa and M. minutiflora plants harvested in two transects at 5 and 130 m from the border in a restrict area of cerrado at the Biological Reserve and Experimental Station of Mogi-Guaçu (SP, Brazil. Results showed that water soluble carbohydrates and starch amounts from the shoots of both species varied according to the time of the year, whilst in the underground organs, variations were observed mainly in relation to the transects. Marked differences in the pattern of the above-ground biomass production between these two grasses relative to their location in the Reserve were also observed, with two peaks of the invasive species (July and January at the Reserve border. The differences in carbohydrate accumulation, partitioning and composition of individual sugars concerning time of the year and location in the Reserve were more related to the annual growth cycle of both grasses and possibly to specific physiological responses of M. minutiflora to disturbed environments in the Reserve border.Echinolaena inflexa (Poir. Chase é uma gramínea C3 muito abundante em áreas de cerrado e com alta produção de biomassa. Melinis minutiflora Beauv. é uma gramínea C4 de origem africana introduzida no Brasil para fins forrageiros, que se espalhou amplamente por áreas de cerrado, provavelmente deslocando espécies nativas. No presente trabalho, o conteúdo e a composição de carboidratos solúveis, o teor de amido e a biomassa aérea foram analisados sazonalmente em plantas de E. inflexa e M. minutiflora coletadas em dois transectos

  16. Number of flocks on the same litter and carcase condemnations due to cellulitis, arthritis and contact foot-pad dermatitis in broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xavier, D B; Broom, D M; McManus, C M P; Torres, C; Bernal, F E M

    2010-10-01

    1. This study was conducted to verify the impact of different kinds of material and the number of times of litter reuse on the incidence of chicken pathologies. Approximately 4·5 million broilers from conventional Brazilian farms were evaluated in the abattoir for cellulitis, arthritis and contact foot-pad dermatitis. 2. Four different kinds of litter material, Brachiaria grass, corncob, sawdust and rice shell, were used. Brachiaria grass litter showed the highest incidence of contact foot-pad dermatitis. Corncob litter also showed some negative effects on foot quality. Broilers raised on rice shell litter showed good results in terms of the incidence of contact foot-pad dermatitis. The best results were obtained with sawdust litter, because the incidence of cellulitis and arthritis were the lowest and the incidence of contact foot-pad dermatitis was also very low.

  17. Reciprocal effects of litter from exotic and congeneric native plant species via soil nutrients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meisner, A.; De Boer, W.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive exotic plant species are often expected to benefit exclusively from legacy effects of their litter inputs on soil processes and nutrient availability. However, there are relatively few experimental tests determining how litter of exotic plants affects their own growth conditions compared to

  18. Resource Utilization by Native and Invasive Earthworms and Their Effects on Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Dynamics in Puerto Rican Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ching-Yu Huang

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Resource utilization by earthworms affects soil C and N dynamics and further colonization of invasive earthworms. By applying 13C-labeled Tabebuia heterophylla leaves and 15N-labeled Andropogon glomeratus grass, we investigated resource utilization by three earthworm species (invasive endogeic Pontoscolex corethrurus, native anecic Estherella sp, and native endogeic Onychochaeta borincana and their effects on soil C and N dynamics in Puerto Rican soils in a 22-day laboratory experiment. Changes of 13C/C and 15N/N in soils, earthworms, and microbial populations were analyzed to evaluate resource utilization by earthworms and their influences on C and N dynamics. Estherella spp. utilized the 13C-labeled litter; however, its utilization on the 13C-labeled litter reduced when cultivated with P. corethrurus and O. borincana. Both P. corethrurus and O. borincana utilized the 13C-labeled litter and 15C-labeled grass roots and root exudates. Pontoscolex corethrurus facilitated soil respiration by stimulating 13C-labeled microbial activity; however, this effect was suppressed possibly due to the changes in the microbial activities or community when coexisting with O. borincana. Increased soil N mineralization by individual Estherella spp. and O. borincana was reduced in the mixed-species treatments. The rapid population growth of P. corethrurus may increase competition pressure on food resources on the local earthworm community. The relevance of resource availability to the population growth of P. corethrurus and its significance as an invasive species is a topic in need of future research.

  19. Phosphorus transformation in poultry litter and litter-treated Oxisol of Brazil assessed by 31P-NMR and wet chemical fractionation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    César Roriz de Souza

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Large quantities of poultry litter are being produced in Brazil, which contain appreciable amounts of phosphorus (P that could be of environmental concern. To assess the immediate environmental threat, five poultry litters composed of diverse bedding material were incubated for 43 days under greenhouse conditions. The litters consisted of: coffee bean husk (CH; wood chips (WC; rice husk (RH; ground corn cobs (CC and ground napier grass (NG (Pennisetum purpureum Schum., in which the change in forms of soluble P was evaluated using 31P NMR spectroscopy. On average, 80.2 and 19.8 % of the total P in the extract, respectively, accounted for the inorganic and organic forms before incubation and 48 % of the organic P was mineralized to inorganic P in 43 days of incubation. Wide variation in the organic P mineralization rate (from 82 % -WC to 4 % - NG was observed among litters. Inorganic orthophosphate (99.9 % and pyrophosphate (0.1 % were the only inorganic P forms, whereas the organic P forms orthophosphate monoesters (76.3 % and diester (23.7 % were detected. Diester P compounds were mineralized almost completely in all litters, except in the CH litter, within the incubation period. Pyrophosphates contributed with less than 0.5% and remained unaltered during the incubation period. Wood-chip litter had a higher organic P (40 % content and a higher diester: monoester ratio; it was therefore mineralized rapidly, within the first 15 days, achieving steady state by the 29th day. Distinct mineralization patterns were observed in the litter when incubated with a clayey Oxisol. The substantial decrease observed in the organic P fraction (Po of the litter types followed the order: CH (45 % > CC (25 % > RH (13 % ≈ NG (12 % > WC (5 %, whereas the Pi fraction increased. Incubation of RH litter in soil slowed down the mineralization of organic P.

  20. Reciprocal effects of litter from exotic and congeneric native plant species via soil nutrients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annelein Meisner

    Full Text Available Invasive exotic plant species are often expected to benefit exclusively from legacy effects of their litter inputs on soil processes and nutrient availability. However, there are relatively few experimental tests determining how litter of exotic plants affects their own growth conditions compared to congeneric native plant species. Here, we test how the legacy of litter from three exotic plant species affects their own performance in comparison to their congeneric natives that co-occur in the invaded habitat. We also analyzed litter effects on soil processes. In all three comparisons, soil with litter from exotic plant species had the highest respiration rates. In two out of the three exotic-native species comparisons, soil with litter from exotic plant species had higher inorganic nitrogen concentrations than their native congener, which was likely due to higher initial litter quality of the exotics. When litter from an exotic plant species had a positive effect on itself, it also had a positive effect on its native congener. We conclude that exotic plant species develop a legacy effect in soil from the invaded range through their litter inputs. This litter legacy effect results in altered soil processes that can promote both the exotic plant species and their native congener.

  1. Quantifying the effect of plant growth on litter decomposition using a novel, triple-isotope label approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernakovich, J. G.; Baldock, J.; Carter, T.; Davis, R. A.; Kalbitz, K.; Sanderman, J.; Farrell, M.

    2017-12-01

    Microbial degradation of plant detritus is now accepted as a major stabilizing process of organic matter in soils. Most of our understanding of the dynamics of decomposition come from laboratory litter decay studies in the absence of plants, despite the fact that litter decays in the presence of plants in many native and managed systems. There is growing evidence that living plants significantly impact the degradation and stabilization of litter carbon (C) due to changes in the chemical and physical nature of soils in the rhizosphere. For example, mechanistic studies have observed stimulatory effects of root exudates on litter decomposition, and greenhouse studies have shown that living plants accelerate detrital decay. Despite this, we lack a quantitative understanding of the contribution of living plants to litter decomposition and how interactions of these two sources of C build soil organic matter (SOM). We used a novel triple-isotope approach to determine the effect of living plants on litter decomposition and C cycling. In the first stage of the experiment, we grew a temperate grass commonly used for forage, Poa labillardieri, in a continuously-labelled atmosphere of 14CO2 fertilized with K15NO3, such that the grass biomass was uniformly labelled with 14C and 15N. In the second stage, we constructed litter decomposition mescososms with and without a living plant to test for the effect of a growing plant on litter decomposition. The 14C/15N litter was decomposed in a sandy clay loam while a temperate forage grass, Lolium perenne, grew in an atmosphere of enriched 13CO2. The fate of the litter-14C/15N and plant-13C was traced into soil mineral fractions and dissolved organic matter (DOM) over the course of nine weeks using four destructive harvests of the mesocosms. Our preliminary results suggest that living plants play a major role in the degradation of plant litter, as litter decomposition was greater, both in rate and absolute amount, for soil mesocosms

  2. Photodegradation of Leaf Litter in Water-Limited Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cory, R. M.; Powers, H.; McDowell, N.; Rahn, T.

    2008-12-01

    The longstanding view of terrestrial decomposition holds that heterotrophic respiration drives release of CO2, but recent studies, such as Austin and Vivanco (2006) have shown that in water-limited environments, photochemical decomposition of leaf litter may be equally or more effective than microbial decomposition. Although initial studies have concluded that photochemical degradation can be important in some environments, it has been difficult to quantify and the oxidative mechanisms involved remain unknown. Thus, the objectives of our study were to (1) quantify the CO2 emitted during photochemical degradation of leaf litter and (2) use the stable isotopic signatures of evolved CO2 to elucidate pathways of production. Emitted CO2 and its isotopic signature were measured using a tunable diode laser (TDL) to assess the pool of photochemically-labile plant matter (δ13C-CO2) in a given sample and to assess the source of the oxygen (δ18O-CO2). We quantified the photochemical release of CO2 and its isotopic signature from dried leaf litter of 10 tree and grass species prevalent in major biotic zones of New Mexico. The cumulative CO2 released upon exposure of 0.1-0.3 g of dried leaf litter to three hours of simulated sunlight ranged from 8-25 mg CO2-C g-1 dried litter, corresponding to 1-2% mass loss. Generally, the δ13C-CO2 was more depleted (4-7 ± 2 per mil) than the average δ13C of the respective leaf litter sample. The δ18O-CO2 evolved is approximately equal to δ18O of atmospheric O2, suggesting that the oxidation mechanism involves direct reaction with atmospheric O2.

  3. Large litter sizes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandøe, Peter; Rutherford, K.M.D.; Berg, Peer

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents some key results and conclusions from a review (Rutherford et al. 2011) undertaken regarding the ethical and welfare implications of breeding for large litter size in the domestic pig and about different ways of dealing with these implications. Focus is primarily on the direct...... possible to achieve a drop in relative piglet mortality and the related welfare problems. However, there will be a growing problem with the need to use foster or nurse sows which may have negative effects on both sows and piglets. This gives rise to new challenges for management....

  4. Experimental analysis of drainage and water storage of litter layers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guevara-Escobar, A.; Gonzalez-Sosa, E.; Ramos-Salinas, M.; Hernandez-Delgado, G. D.

    2007-06-01

    Leaf litter overlying forested floors are important for erosion control and slope stability, but also reduces pasture growth in silvopastoral systems. Little information exists regarding the value of percolation and storage capacity parameters for litter layers. These estimates are needed for modelling better management practices for leaf litter. Therefore, this work measured the effect of four rainfall intensities: 9.8, 30.2, 40.4 and 70.9 mm h-1 on the hydrological response of layers of three materials: recently senesced poplar leaves, fresh grass and woodchips. Maximum storage (Cmax), defined as the detention of water immediately before rainfall cessation, increased with rainfall intensity. The magnitude of the increment was 0.2 mm between the lowest and highest rainfall intensities. Mean values of Cmax were: 1.27, 1.51, 1.67 and 1.65 mm for poplar leaves; 0.63 0.77, 0.73 and 0.76 for fresh grass and; 1.64, 2.23, 2.21 and 2.16 for woodchips. Drainage parameters were: 9.9, 8.8 and 2.2 mm-1 for poplar, grass and woodchips layers. An underlying soil matrix influenced the drainage flow from poplar leaf layers producing pseudo-Hortonian overland flow, but this occurred only when the rainfall intensity was 40.4 and 70.9 mm h-1 and accounted for 0.4 and 0.8‰ of total drainage. On the other hand, the presence of a poplar leaf layer had a damping effect on the drainage rate from the underlying soil matrix, particularly at intermediate rainfall intensities: 30.2 or 40.4 mm h-1.

  5. Sonoran Desert ecosystem transformation by a C4 grass without the grass/fire cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olsson, Aaryn D.; Betancourt, Julio; McClaran, Mitchel P.; Marsh, Stuart E.

    2012-01-01

    Aim Biological invasions facilitate ecosystem transformation by altering the structure and function, diversity, dominance and disturbance regimes. A classic case is the grass–fire cycle in which grass invasion increases the frequency, scale and/or intensity of wildfires and promotes the continued invasion of invasive grasses. Despite wide acceptance of the grass–fire cycle, questions linger about the relative roles that interspecific plant competition and fire play in ecosystem transformations. Location Sonoran Desert Arizona Upland of the Santa Catalina Mountains, Arizona, USA. Methods We measured species cover, density and saguaro (Carnegiea gigantea) size structure along gradients of Pennisetum ciliare invasion at 10 unburned/ungrazed P. ciliare patches. Regression models quantified differences in diversity, cover and density with respect to P. ciliare cover, and residence time and a Fisher's exact test detected demographic changes in saguaro populations. Because P. ciliare may have initially invaded locations that were both more invasible and less diverse, we ran analyses with and without the plots in which initial infestations were located. Results Richness and diversity decreased with P. ciliare cover as did cover and density of most dominant species. Richness and diversity declined with increasing time since invasion, suggesting an ongoing transformation. The proportion of old-to-young Carnegiea gigantea was significantly lower in plots with dominant P. ciliare cover. Main conclusions Rich desert scrub (15–25 species per plot) was transformed into depauperate grassland (2–5 species per plot) within 20 years following P. ciliare invasion without changes to the fire regime. While the onset of a grass–fire cycle may drive ecosystem change in the later stages and larger scales of grass invasions of arid lands, competition by P. ciliare can drive small-scale transformations earlier in the invasion. Linking competition-induced transformation rates with

  6. Environmentally-friendly animal litter

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boxley, Chett; McKelvie, Jessica

    2012-08-28

    An animal litter composition including geopolymerized ash particulates having a network of repeating aluminum-silicon units is described herein. Generally, the animal litter is made from a quantity of a pozzolanic ash mixed with a sufficient quantity of water and an alkaline activator to initiate a geopolymerization reaction that forms geopolymerized ash. After the geopolymerized ash is formed, it is dried, broken into particulates, and sieved to a desired size. These geopolymerized ash particulates are used to make a non-clumping or clumping animal litter. Odor control is accomplished with the addition of a urease inhibitor, pH buffer, an odor eliminating agent, and/or fragrance.

  7. Environmentally-friendly animal litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boxley, Chett; McKelvie, Jessica

    2013-09-03

    An animal litter composition that includes geopolymerized ash particulates having a network of repeating aluminum-silicon units is described herein. Generally, the animal litter is made from a quantity of a pozzolanic ash mixed with an alkaline activator to initiate a geopolymerization reaction that forms geopolymerized ash. This geopolymerization reaction may occur within a pelletizer. After the geopolymerized ash is formed, it may be dried and sieved to a desired size. These geopolymerized ash particulates may be used to make a non-clumping or clumping animal litter or other absorbing material. Aluminum sulfate, clinoptilolite, silica gel, sodium alginate and mineral oil may be added as additional ingredients.

  8. resistance of napier grass clones to napier grass stunt disease

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ACSS

    Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach) is the major livestock fodder under intensive and semi-intensive systems in East Africa. However, the productivity of the grass is constrained by Napier grass Stunt Disease. (NSD). The purpose of this study was to identify Napier grass clones with resistance to NSD.

  9. Resistance of Napier grass clones to Napier grass Stunt Disease ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach) is the major livestock fodder under intensive and semi-intensive systems in East Africa. However, the productivity of the grass is constrained by Napier grass Stunt Disease (NSD). The purpose of this study was to identify Napier grass clones with resistance to NSD.

  10. Identifying Sources of Marine Litter

    OpenAIRE

    VEIGA Joana Mira; FLEET David; KINSEY Sue; NILSSON Per; VLACHOGIANNI Thomais; WERNER Stefanie; GALGANI Francois; THOMPSON Richard; DAGEVOS Jeroen; GAGO Jesus; SOBRAL Paula; CRONIN Richard

    2016-01-01

    Marine litter is a global problem causing harm to marine wildlife, coastal communities and maritime activities. It also embodies an emerging concern for human health and safety. The reduction of marine litter pollution poses a complex challenge for humankind, requiring adjustments in human behaviour as well as in the different phases of the life-cycle of products and across multiple economic sectors. The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) requires European Member States to monitor...

  11. Recent invasion of buffel grass (Cenchrus ciliaris of a natural protected area from the southern Sonoran Desert Invasión reciente de zacate buffel (Cenchrus ciliaris en un área natural protegida del desierto sonorense

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erick De la Barrera

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available The Centro Ecológico de Sonora is a natural protected area where the natural vegetation remained undisturbed at least until 1997. Since then, Cenchrus ciliaris has become a prominent element of the vegetation because of disturbance. Climate, soil properties, population structure and biological activity for C. ciliaris were studied to gain understanding of the ecological mechanisms that favored the invasion by this exotic grass. Mean air temperature and annual rainfall were 24.8°C and 302 mm. The soil was a loamy-sand that was poor in most nutrients, but particularly rich in phosphorus. Pennisetum ciliare was the most abundant species at the Centro Ecológico, representing over one third of total plant ground cover. Basal area for individual plants ranged from less than 1 cm² to almost 1 m². Living leaves per plant increased with precipitation, peaking at 199 leaves in March 2005, and no living leaves were found after 103 days without rain. The environmental conditions prevalent at Centro Ecológico are very favorable for C. ciliaris, whose establishment was apparently triggered by a major disturbance caused by the development of housing projects.El Centro Ecológico de Sonora es un área natural protegida donde la vegetación autóctona permaneció sin disturbios por lo menos hasta 1997. Desde entonces, Cenchrus ciliaris se ha convertido en un elemento prominente de la vegetación. Se estudiaron el clima, las propiedades del suelo, la estructura de la población y la actividad biológica de C. ciliaris, como una aproximación al entendimiento de los mecanismos ecológicos que favorecieron la invasión por este pasto exótico. La temperatura media del aire y la precipitación anual fueron de 24.8 °C y 302 mm. El suelo fue una arena limosa pobre en minerales, pero particularmente rica en fósforo. Cenchrus ciliaris fue la especie herbácea más abundante en el Centro Ecológico, representando más de un tercio de la cobertura vegetal. El

  12. Grass Rooting the System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perlman, Janice E.

    1976-01-01

    Suggests a taxonomy of the grass roots movement and gives a general descriptive over view of the 60 groups studied with respect to origin, constituency, size, funding, issues, and ideology. (Author/AM)

  13. Energetic contaminants inhibit plant litter decomposition in soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuperman, Roman G; Checkai, Ronald T; Simini, Michael; Sunahara, Geoffrey I; Hawari, Jalal

    2018-05-30

    Individual effects of nitrogen-based energetic materials (EMs) 2,4-dinitrotoluene (2,4-DNT), 2-amino-4,6-dinitrotoluene (2-ADNT), 4-amino-2,6-dinitrotoluene (4-ADNT), nitroglycerin (NG), and 2,4,6,8,10,12-hexanitrohexaazaisowurtzitane (CL-20) on litter decomposition, an essential biologically-mediated soil process, were assessed using Orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata) straw in Sassafras sandy loam (SSL) soil, which has physicochemical characteristics that support "very high" qualitative relative bioavailability for organic chemicals. Batches of SSL soil were separately amended with individual EMs or acetone carrier control. To quantify the decomposition rates, one straw cluster was harvested from a set of randomly selected replicate containers from within each treatment, after 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 8 months of exposure. Results showed that soil amended with 2,4-DNT or NG inhibited litter decomposition rates based on the median effective concentration (EC50) values of 1122 mg/kg and 860 mg/kg, respectively. Exposure to 2-ADNT, 4-ADNT or CL-20 amended soil did not significantly affect litter decomposition in SSL soil at ≥ 10,000 mg/kg. These ecotoxicological data will be helpful in identifying concentrations of EMs in soil that present an acceptable ecological risk for biologically-mediated soil processes. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Spatial and temporal variability of guinea grass (Megathyrsus maximus) fuel loads and moisture on Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisa M. Ellsworth; Creighton M. Litton; Andrew D. Taylor; J. Boone Kauffman

    2013-01-01

    Frequent wildfires in tropical landscapes dominated by non-native invasive grasses threaten surrounding ecosystems and developed areas. To better manage fire, accurate estimates of the spatial and temporal variability in fuels are urgently needed. We quantified the spatial variability in live and dead fine fuel loads and moistures at four guinea grass (...

  15. Photochemically induced carbon dioxide production as a mechanism for carbon loss from plant litter in arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, L. A.; Bohnet, C.; King, J. Y.

    2009-06-01

    We investigated the potential for abiotic mineralization to carbon dioxide (CO2) via photodegradation to account for carbon (C) loss from plant litter under conditions typical of arid ecosystems. We exposed five species of grass and oak litter collected from arid and mesic sites to a factorial design of ultraviolet (UV) radiation (UV pass, UV block), and sterilization under dry conditions in the laboratory. UV pass treatments produced 10 times the amount of CO2 produced in UV block treatments. CO2 production rates were unaffected by litter chemistry or sterilization. We also exposed litter to natural solar radiation outdoors on clear, sunny days close to the summer solstice at midlatitudes and found that UV radiation (280-400 nm) accounted for 55% of photochemically induced CO2 production, while shortwave visible radiation (400-500 nm) accounted for 45% of CO2 production. Rates of photochemically induced CO2 production on a per-unit-mass basis decreased with litter density, indicating that rates depend on litter surface area. We found no evidence for leaching, methane production, or facilitation of microbial decomposition as alternative mechanisms for significant photochemically induced C loss from litter. We conclude that abiotic mineralization to CO2 is the primary mechanism by which C is lost from litter during photodegradation. We estimate that CO2 production via photodegradation could be between 1 and 4 g C m-2 a-1 in arid ecosystems in the southwestern United States. Taken together with low levels of litter production in arid systems, photochemical mineralization to CO2 could account for a significant proportion of annual carbon loss from litter in arid ecosystems.

  16. Nutrient Dynamics and Litter Decomposition in Leucaena ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nutrient contents and rate of litter decomposition were investigated in Leucaena leucocephala plantation in the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria. Litter bag technique was used to study the pattern and rate of litter decomposition and nutrient release of Leucaena leucocephala. Fifty grams of oven-dried ...

  17. Effects of Plant Functional Group Loss on Soil Microbial Community and Litter Decomposition in a Steppe Vegetation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Chunwang; Zhou, Yong; Su, Jiaqi; Yang, Fan

    2017-01-01

    Globally, many terrestrial ecosystems are experiencing a rapid loss of biodiversity. Continued improvements in our understanding of interrelationships between plant diversity and soil microbes are critical to address the concern over the consequences of the decline in biodiversity on ecosystem functioning and services. By removing forbs, or grasses, or, to an extreme scenario, both forbs and grasses in a steppe vegetation in Inner Mongolia, we studied how plant functional group (PFG) loss affects soil microbial community composition using phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA) and litter decomposition using a litter-bag method. PFG loss significantly decreased above- and below-ground plant biomass, soil microbial biomass carbon (SMBC) and nitrogen (SMBN), but had no effect on the ratio of SMBC to SMBN. Although the ratio of fungal to bacterial PLFAs remained unaffected, PFG loss significantly reduced the amount of bacterial, fungal, and total PLFAs. PFG loss decreased litter monthly mass loss and decay constant, and such decrease was significant when both forbs and grasses were removed. Our results provide robust evidence that PFG loss in grassland ecosystem can lead to a rapid response of soil microbial activity which may affect litter decomposition and soil nutrient cycling, suggesting that the assessment of plant-microbe interactions in soils is an integral component of ecosystem response to biodiversity loss.

  18. Using multi-date satellite imagery to monitor invasive grass species distribution in post-wildfire landscapes: An iterative, adaptable approach that employs open-source data and software

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, Amanda M.; Evangelista, Paul H.; Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Kumar, Sunil; Swallow, Aaron; Luizza, Matthew; Chignell, Steve

    2017-01-01

    Among the most pressing concerns of land managers in post-wildfire landscapes are the establishment and spread of invasive species. Land managers need accurate maps of invasive species cover for targeted management post-disturbance that are easily transferable across space and time. In this study, we sought to develop an iterative, replicable methodology based on limited invasive species occurrence data, freely available remotely sensed data, and open source software to predict the distribution of Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass) in a post-wildfire landscape. We developed four species distribution models using eight spectral indices derived from five months of Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI) data in 2014. These months corresponded to both cheatgrass growing period and time of field data collection in the study area. The four models were improved using an iterative approach in which a threshold for cover was established, and all models had high sensitivity values when tested on an independent dataset. We also quantified the area at highest risk for invasion in future seasons given 2014 distribution, topographic covariates, and seed dispersal limitations. These models demonstrate the effectiveness of using derived multi-date spectral indices as proxies for species occurrence on the landscape, the importance of selecting thresholds for invasive species cover to evaluate ecological risk in species distribution models, and the applicability of Landsat 8 OLI and the Software for Assisted Habitat Modeling for targeted invasive species management.

  19. GUI development for GRASS GIS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Landa

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available This article discusses GUI development for GRASS GIS. Sophisticated native GUI for GRASS is one of the key points (besides the new 2D/3D raster library, vector architecture improvements, etc. for the future development of GRASS. In 2006 the GRASS development team decided to start working on the new generation of GUI instead of improving the current GUI based on Tcl/Tk.

  20. The effects of feeding broiler litter on microbial contamination of beef carcasses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davis, J.R.; Apple, J.K.; Hellwig, D.H.; Kegley, E.B.; Pohlman, F.W. [University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR (United States). Department of Animal Science

    2002-09-01

    Two experiments were conducted to test the effects of feeding broiler litter, either directly in the diet or indirectly through pasture-fertilization, to beef cattle on the incidence of Salmonella typhimurium (S) and Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EC) contamination of carcasses and ground beef. In Experiment 1, beef cows (n=32) were allotted either ad libitum access to grass hay or a formulated diet (80% deep-stacked broiler litter and 20% corn). In Experiment 2, beef cows (n=32) were assigned to graze on pastures fertilized with a commercial fertilizer or fresh broiler litter. Cows in Experiment 1 were harvested following a 56-d feeding period; whereas, cows in Experiment 2 were harvested after 5, 10, 20, and 40 d of grazing pastures. All samples of muscle, purge, and ground beef were culture-negative for S and EC, suggesting that beef cattle may consume properly handled deep-stacked broiler litter, or pastures fertilized with fresh litter, without increasing the likelihood of carcass/meat contamination with S and (or) EC. (author)

  1. Negative and positive interactions among plants: effects of competitors and litter on seedling emergence and growth of forest and grassland species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loydi, A; Donath, T W; Otte, A; Eckstein, R L

    2015-05-01

    Living plant neighbours, but also their dead aboveground remains (i.e. litter), may individually exert negative or positive effects on plant recruitment. Although living plants and litter co-occur in most ecosystems, few studies have addressed their combined effects, and conclusions are ambivalent. Therefore, we examined the response in terms of seedling emergence and growth of herbaceous grassland and forest species to different litter types and amounts and the presence of competitors. We conducted a pot experiment testing the effects of litter type (grass, oak), litter amount (low, medium, high) and interspecific competition (presence or absence of four Festuca arundinacea individuals) on seedling emergence and biomass of four congeneric pairs of hemicryptophytes from two habitat types (woodland, grassland). Interactions between litter and competition were weak. Litter presence increased competitor biomass. It also had positive effects on seedling emergence at low litter amounts and negative effects at high litter amounts, while competition had no effect on seedling emergence. Seedling biomass was negatively affected by the presence of competitors, and this effect was stronger in combination with high amounts of litter. Litter affected seedling emergence while competition determined the biomass of the emerged individuals, both affecting early stages of seedling recruitment. High litter accumulation also reduced seedling biomass, but this effect seemed to be additive to competitor effects. This suggests that live and dead plant mass can affect species recruitment in natural systems, but the mechanisms by which they operate and their timing differ. © 2014 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  2. Impacts of emerald ash borer-induced tree mortality on leaf litter arthropods and exotic earthworms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael D. Ulyshen; Wendy S. Klooster; William T. Barrington; Daniel A. Herns

    2011-01-01

    Because leaf litter occurs at the interface between the soil and atmosphere, the invertebrates inhabiting it represent important linkages between above- and below-ground food webs. The responses of these organisms to forest disturbance brought about by invasive species should therefore have far-reaching ecological effects. The purpose of this study was to explore how...

  3. Climate and litter quality differently modulate the effects of soil fauna on litter decomposition across biomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Palacios, Pablo; Maestre, Fernando T; Kattge, Jens; Wall, Diana H

    2013-08-01

    Climate and litter quality have been identified as major drivers of litter decomposition at large spatial scales. However, the role played by soil fauna remains largely unknown, despite its importance for litter fragmentation and microbial activity. We synthesised litterbag studies to quantify the effect sizes of soil fauna on litter decomposition rates at the global and biome scales, and to assess how climate, litter quality and soil fauna interact to determine such rates. Soil fauna consistently enhanced litter decomposition at both global and biome scales (average increment ~ 37%). [corrected]. However, climate and litter quality differently modulated the effects of soil fauna on decomposition rates between biomes, from climate-driven biomes to those where climate effects were mediated by changes in litter quality. Our results advocate for the inclusion of biome-specific soil fauna effects on litter decomposition as a mean to reduce the unexplained variation in large-scale decomposition models. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  4. Effects of top-dressing recycled broiler litter on litter production, litter characteristics, and nitrogen mass balance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coufal, C D; Chavez, C; Niemeyer, P R; Carey, J B

    2006-03-01

    Top-dressing is a method of broiler litter management in which a thin layer of new, clean litter material is spread over the top of previously used litter prior to placement of a new flock. This fresh layer of bedding material increases the absorptive capacity of the litter and decreases litter caking. Although this practice has been widely used in the poultry industry for many years, no research has been conducted to quantify the effects the practice has on broiler performance, litter production rates, and nutrient content, or the ability of broiler litter to retain manure N and prevent volatilization. An experiment was conducted to quantify these parameters under simulated commercial conditions in a research facility. Nine consecutive flocks of broilers were reared on recycled broiler litter that had previously been used for 9 flocks. Control pens received no litter treatment whereas top-dressed pens received a thin layer of new rice hulls (1 to 2 cm) before the placement of each flock. Nitrogen loss was calculated using the mass balance method. Average broiler performance was not different between the top-dressed and control pens. Top-dressing of litter significantly (P dressed pens compared with control pens. As a result, litter C:N ratios were significantly higher for pens with top-dressed litter. Differences in N loss between the treatments were not consistent. Average N loss for all flocks was 10.61 and 11.92 g of N/kg of marketed broiler for control and top-dressed pens, respectively, or 20.1 and 22.5% of N inputs, respectively. Based on this experiment, top-dressing of recycled broiler litter would not be recommended as a strategy to reduce the volatilization of N from broiler rearing facilities and, in fact, may actually increase N loss.

  5. Plant litter functional diversity effects on litter mass loss depend on the macro-detritivore community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patoine, Guillaume; Thakur, Madhav P; Friese, Julia; Nock, Charles; Hönig, Lydia; Haase, Josephine; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2017-11-01

    A better understanding of the mechanisms driving litter diversity effects on decomposition is needed to predict how biodiversity losses affect this crucial ecosystem process. In a microcosm study, we investigated the effects of litter functional diversity and two major groups of soil macro-detritivores on the mass loss of tree leaf litter mixtures. Furthermore, we tested the effects of litter trait community means and dissimilarity on litter mass loss for seven traits relevant to decomposition. We expected macro-detritivore effects on litter mass loss to be most pronounced in litter mixtures of high functional diversity. We used 24 leaf mixtures differing in functional diversity, which were composed of litter from four species from a pool of 16 common European tree species. Earthworms, isopods, or a combination of both were added to each litter combination for two months. Litter mass loss was significantly higher in the presence of earthworms than in that of isopods, whereas no synergistic effects of macro-detritivore mixtures were found. The effect of functional diversity of the litter material was highest in the presence of both macro-detritivore groups, supporting the notion that litter diversity effects are most pronounced in the presence of different detritivore species. Species-specific litter mass loss was explained by nutrient content, secondary compound concentration, and structural components. Moreover, dissimilarity in N concentrations increased litter mass loss, probably because detritivores having access to nutritionally diverse food sources. Furthermore, strong competition between the two macro-detritivores for soil surface litter resulted in a decrease of survival of both macro-detritivores. These results show that the effects of litter functional diversity on decomposition are contingent upon the macro-detritivore community and composition. We conclude that the temporal dynamics of litter trait diversity effects and their interaction with

  6. Measurement of broiler litter production rates and nutrient content using recycled litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coufal, C D; Chavez, C; Niemeyer, P R; Carey, J B

    2006-03-01

    It is important for broiler producers to know litter production rates and litter nutrient content when developing nutrient management plans. Estimation of broiler litter production varies widely in the literature due to factors such as geographical region, type of housing, size of broiler produced, and number of flocks reared on the same litter. Published data for N, P, and K content are also highly variable. In addition, few data are available regarding the rate of production, characteristics, and nutrient content of caked litter (cake). In this study, 18 consecutive flocks of broilers were reared on the same litter in experimental pens under simulated commercial conditions. The mass of litter and cake produced was measured after each flock. Samples of all litter materials were analyzed for pH, moisture, N, P, and K. Average litter and cake moisture content were 26.4 and 46.9%, respectively. Significant variation in litter and cake nutrient content was observed and can largely be attributed to ambient temperature differences. Average litter, cake, and total litter (litter plus cake) production rates were 153.3, 74.8, and 228.2 g of dry litter material per kg of live broiler weight (g/kg) per flock, respectively. Significant variation in litter production rates among flocks was also observed. Cumulative litter, cake, and total litter production rates after 18 flocks were 170.3, 78.7, and 249.0 g/kg, respectively. The data produced from this research can be used by broiler producers to estimate broiler litter and cake production and the nutrient content of these materials.

  7. Invasive plants and their escape from root herbivory: a worldwide comparison of the root-feeding nematode communities of the dune grass Ammophila arenaria in natural and introduced ranges

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Putten, van der W.H.; Yeates, G.W.; Duyts, H.; Schreck Reis, C.; Karssen, G.

    2005-01-01

    Invasive plants generally have fewer aboveground pathogens and viruses in their introduced range than in their natural range, and they also have fewer pathogens than do similar plant species native to the introduced range. However, although plant abundance is strongly controlled by root herbivores

  8. Book title: Exotic brome grasses in arid and semi-arid ecosystems of the western US: causes, consequences, and management implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Exotic invasive annual grass research and management in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the western US have historically focused on the outcome of efforts to reduce weed abundance. Given the current impact of invasive annual grasses and their continued spread in this region, we assessed components ...

  9. Marine litter prediction by artificial intelligence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Balas, Can Elmar; Ergin, Aysen; Williams, Allan T.; Koc, Levent

    2004-01-01

    Artificial intelligence techniques of neural network and fuzzy systems were applied as alternative methods to determine beach litter grading, based on litter surveys of the Antalya coastline (the Turkish Riviera). Litter measurements were categorized and assessed by artificial intelligence techniques, which lead to a new litter categorization system. The constructed neural network satisfactorily predicted the grading of the Antalya beaches and litter categories based on the number of litter items in the general litter category. It has been concluded that, neural networks could be used for high-speed predictions of litter items and beach grading, when the characteristics of the main litter category was determined by field studies. This can save on field effort when fast and reliable estimations of litter categories are required for management or research studies of beaches--especially those concerned with health and safety, and it has economic implications. The main advantages in using fuzzy systems are that they consider linguistic adjectival definitions, e.g. many/few, etc. As a result, additional information inherent in linguistic comments/refinements and judgments made during field studies can be incorporated in grading systems

  10. Marine litter prediction by artificial intelligence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Balas, Can Elmar; Ergin, Aysen; Williams, Allan T.; Koc, Levent

    2004-03-01

    Artificial intelligence techniques of neural network and fuzzy systems were applied as alternative methods to determine beach litter grading, based on litter surveys of the Antalya coastline (the Turkish Riviera). Litter measurements were categorized and assessed by artificial intelligence techniques, which lead to a new litter categorization system. The constructed neural network satisfactorily predicted the grading of the Antalya beaches and litter categories based on the number of litter items in the general litter category. It has been concluded that, neural networks could be used for high-speed predictions of litter items and beach grading, when the characteristics of the main litter category was determined by field studies. This can save on field effort when fast and reliable estimations of litter categories are required for management or research studies of beaches--especially those concerned with health and safety, and it has economic implications. The main advantages in using fuzzy systems are that they consider linguistic adjectival definitions, e.g. many/few, etc. As a result, additional information inherent in linguistic comments/refinements and judgments made during field studies can be incorporated in grading systems.

  11. Association between litterers' profile and littering behavior: A chi-square approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asmui, Mas'udah; Zaki, Suhanom Mohd; Wahid, Sharifah Norhuda Syed; Mokhtar, Noorsuraya Mohd; Harith, Siti Suhaila

    2017-05-01

    Littering is not a novelty, yet a prolonged issue. The solutions have been discussed for a long time; however this issue still remains unresolved. Littering is commonly associated with littering behavior and awareness. The littering behavior is normally influenced by the litter profile such as gender, family income, education level and age. Jengka Street market, which is located in Pahang, is popularly known as a trade market. It offers diversities of wet and dry goods and is awaited by local residents and tourists. This study analyzes association between litterers' profile and littering behavior. Littering behavior is measured based on factors of trash bin facilities, awareness campaign and public littering behavior. 114 respondents were involved in this study with 62 (54.39%) are female aged more than 18 years old and majority of these female respondents are diploma holders. In addition, 78.95% of the respondents have family income below than RM3,000.00 per month. Based on the data analysis, it was found that first-time visitors littered higher than frequent visitors, lack of providing trash bin facilities contributes to positive littering behavior and there is a significant association between litterers' age and littering behavior by using chi-square approach.

  12. Controle de invasão biológica por capim-anonni em margem viária mediante a introdução de gramíneas Control of biological invasion by South African lovegrass on a roadside by introducing grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Borges de Medeiros

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Objetivou-se avaliar o controle da invasão biológica por Eragrostis plana Nees (capim-anonni em margens de rodovia com a introdução de gramíneas concorrentes associada a práticas de preparo do solo e adubação. O delineamento experimental foi em blocos casualizados com parcelas subdivididas e três repetições. Nas parcelas, foram avaliadas duas práticas de preparo do solo: solo subsolado e gradeado com aplicação de calcário e fósforo; e solo apenas subsolado, e nas subparcelas, as espécies de gramíneas: capim-mombaça (Megathyrsus maximus (Jacq. B. K. Simon & S. W. L. Jacobs; capim-kazangula (Setaria sphacelata (Schumach. Stapf & C. E. Hubb. ex M. B. Moss; mistura de sementes de três gramíneas nativas, grama-de-forquilha (Paspalum notatum Alain ex Flüggé, macega-do-banhado (Paspalum regnelli Mez e capim-das-roças (Paspalum urvillei Steud.; avaliadas em comparação a uma subparcela de exclusão (testemunha. Nos levantamentos florísticos, realizados em 8 de janeiro de 2005, e após o plantio, em 26 de janeiro e 25 de junho de 2006, observou-se alta riqueza florística, com 86 espécies botânicas distribuídas em 29 famílias e 21% de espécies exóticas. O solo subsolado, gradeado, corrigido e adubado, associado às introduções de M. maximus e S. kazungula, foram as alternativas que mais contribuíram para reduzir a cobertura de E. plana. As gramíneas nativas presentes na vegetação do acostamento, Paspalum plicatulum Mitchx, Piptochaetium montevidense (Spreng. Parodi e a espécie nativa introduzida (Paspalum urvillei têm potencial para controlar a invasão de E. plana.The objective of this study was to control biological invasion by Eragrostis plana Nees (South African lovegrass on a roadside by introducing competitor grasses associated with soil management and fertilization practices. The experimental design was a complete randomized block with split-plots parcels and three replications. In the parcels, it was

  13. Initial Soil Organic Matter Content Influences the Storage and Turnover of Litter-, Root- and Soil Carbon in Grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, L.; Xu, S.; Li, P.; Sayer, E. J.

    2017-12-01

    Grassland degradation is a worldwide problem that often leads to substantial loss of soil organic matter (SOM). Understanding how SOM content influences the stabilization of plant carbon (C) to form soil C is important to evaluate the potential of degraded grasslands to sequester additional C. We conducted a greenhouse experiment using C3 soils with six levels of SOM content and planted the C4 grass Cleistogenes squarrosa and/or added its litter to investigate how SOM content regulates the storage of new soil C derived from litter and roots, the decomposition of extant soil C, and the formation of soil aggregates. We found that microbial biomass carbon (MBC) increased with SOM content, and increased the mineralization of litter C. Both litter addition and planted treatments increased the amount of new C inputs to soil. However, litter addition had no significant impacts on the mineralization of extant soil C, but the presence of living roots significantly accelerated it. Thus, by the end of the experiment, soil C content was significantly higher in the litter addition treatments, but was not affected by planted treatments. The soil macroaggregate fraction increased with SOM content and was positively related to MBC. Overall, our study suggests that as SOM content increases, plant growth and soil microbes become more active, which allows microbes to process more plant-derived C and increases new soil C formation. The interactions between SOM content and plant C inputs should be considered when evaluating soil C turnover in degraded grasslands.

  14. Factors influencing seed germination in Cerrado grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosana Marta Kolb

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Few studies address the ecology of herbs of Cerrado grasslands, which are ecosystems where the long dry season, high temperatures, insolation, fire and invasive grasses greatly influencing germination and the establishment of plants. We assessed germination of 13 species of Poaceae from Cerrado grasslands under nursery conditions or in germination chambers, the latter with i recently collected seeds and seeds after six months storage, ii under constant and alternating temperatures, and iii in the presence and absence of light. Germinability, mean germination time (MGT and required light were quantified to elucidate factors involved in successful germination. Germinability was low for most grasses, probably because of low seed viability. For most species, germinability and MGT were not altered by seed storage. Germination percentages were higher at alternating temperatures and in the presence of light, factors that are more similar to natural environmental situations compared with constant temperature or the absence of light. Our findings indicate that alternating temperatures and light incidence are key factors for germination of species of Poaceae. The maintenance of these environmental factors, which are crucial for the conservation of Cerrado grasslands, depends on appropriate management interventions, such as fire management and the control of biological invasion.

  15. Cigarette Litter: Smokers’ Attitudes and Behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia C. Cartwright

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Cigarette butts are consistently the most collected items in litter clean-up efforts, which are a costly burden to local economies. In addition, tobacco waste may be detrimental to our natural environment. The tobacco industry has conducted or funded numerous studies on smokers’ littering knowledge and behavior, however, non-industry sponsored research is rare. We sought to examine whether demographics and smokers’ knowledge and beliefs toward cigarette waste as litter predicts littering behavior. Smokers aged 18 and older (n = 1,000 were interviewed about their knowledge and beliefs towards cigarette waste as litter. Respondents were members of the Research Now panel, an online panel of over three million respondents in the United States. Multivariate logistic regressions were conducted to determine factors significantly predictive of ever having littered cigarette butts or having littered cigarette butts within the past month (p-value < 0.05. The majority (74.1% of smokers reported having littered cigarette butts at least once in their life, by disposing of them on the ground or throwing them out of a car window. Over half (55.7% reported disposing of cigarette butts on the ground, in a sewer/gutter, or down a drain in the past month. Those who did not consider cigarette butts to be litter were over three and half times as likely to report having ever littered cigarette butts (OR = 3.68, 95%CI = 2.04, 6.66 and four times as likely to have littered cigarette butts in the past month (OR = 4.00, 95%CI = 2.53, 6.32. Males were significantly more likely to have littered cigarette butts in the past month compared to females (OR = 1.49, 95%CI = 1.14, 1.94. Holding the belief that cigarette butts are not litter was the only belief in this study that predicted ever or past-month littering of cigarette waste. Messages in anti-cigarette-litter campaigns should emphasize that cigarette butts are not just litter but are toxic

  16. Interaction of initial litter quality and thinning intensity on litter decomposition rate, nitrogen accumulation and release in a pine plantation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao Chen; Deborah Page-Dumroese; Ruiheng Lv; Weiwei Wang; Guolei Li; Yong. Liu

    2014-01-01

    Thinning alters litter quality and microclimate under forests. Both of these two changes after thinning induce alterations of litter decomposition rates and nutrient cycling. However, a possible interaction between these two changes remains unclear. We placed two types of litter (LN, low N concentration litter; HN, high N concentration litter) in a Chinese pine (Pinus...

  17. Comparing soil organic carbon dynamics in perennial grasses and shrubs in a saline-alkaline arid region, northwestern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yong; Pei, Zhiqin; Su, Jiaqi; Zhang, Jingli; Zheng, Yuanrun; Ni, Jian; Xiao, Chunwang; Wang, Renzhong

    2012-01-01

    Although semi-arid and arid regions account for about 40% of terrestrial surface of the Earth and contain approximately 10% of the global soil organic carbon stock, our understanding of soil organic carbon dynamics in these regions is limited. A field experiment was conducted to compare soil organic carbon dynamics between a perennial grass community dominated by Cleistogenes squarrosa and an adjacent shrub community co-dominated by Reaumuria soongorica and Haloxylon ammodendron, two typical plant life forms in arid ecosystems of saline-alkaline arid regions in northwestern China during the growing season 2010. We found that both fine root biomass and necromass in two life forms varied greatly during the growing season. Annual fine root production in the perennial grasses was 45.6% significantly higher than in the shrubs, and fine root turnover rates were 2.52 and 2.17 yr(-1) for the perennial grasses and the shrubs, respectively. Floor mass was significantly higher in the perennial grasses than in the shrubs due to the decomposition rate of leaf litter in the perennial grasses was 61.8% lower than in the shrubs even though no significance was detected in litterfall production. Soil microbial biomass and activity demonstrated a strong seasonal variation with larger values in May and September and minimum values in the dry month of July. Observed higher soil organic carbon stocks in the perennial grasses (1.32 Kg C m(-2)) than in the shrubs (1.12 Kg C m(-2)) might be attributed to both greater inputs of poor quality litter that is relatively resistant to decay and the lower ability of microorganism to decompose these organic matter. Our results suggest that the perennial grasses might accumulate more soil organic carbon with time than the shrubs because of larger amounts of inputs from litter and slower return of carbon through decomposition.

  18. Dual role of lignin in plant litter decomposition in terrestrial ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austin, Amy T; Ballaré, Carlos L

    2010-03-09

    Plant litter decomposition is a critical step in the formation of soil organic matter, the mineralization of organic nutrients, and the carbon balance in terrestrial ecosystems. Biotic decomposition in mesic ecosystems is generally negatively correlated with the concentration of lignin, a group of complex aromatic polymers present in plant cell walls that is recalcitrant to enzymatic degradation and serves as a structural barrier impeding microbial access to labile carbon compounds. Although photochemical mineralization of carbon has recently been shown to be important in semiarid ecosystems, litter chemistry controls on photodegradative losses are not understood. We evaluated the importance of litter chemistry on photodegradation of grass litter and cellulose substrates with varying levels of lignin [cellulose-lignin (CL) substrates] under field conditions. Using wavelength-specific light attenuation filters, we found that light-driven mass loss was promoted by both UV and visible radiation. The spectral dependence of photodegradation correlated with the absorption spectrum of lignin but not of cellulose. Field incubations demonstrated that increasing lignin concentration reduced biotic decomposition, as expected, but linearly increased photodegradation. In addition, lignin content in CL substrates consistently decreased in photodegradative incubations. We conclude that lignin has a dual role affecting litter decomposition, depending on the dominant driver (biotic or abiotic) controlling carbon turnover. Under photodegradative conditions, lignin is preferentially degraded because it acts as an effective light-absorbing compound over a wide range of wavelengths. This mechanistic understanding of the role of lignin in plant litter decomposition will allow for more accurate predictions of carbon dynamics in terrestrial ecosystems.

  19. Non-native grass removal and shade increase soil moisture and seedling performance during Hawaiian dry forest restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jared M. Thaxton; Susan Cordell; Robert J. Cabin; Darren R. Sandquist

    2012-01-01

    Invasive non-native species can create especially problematic restoration barriers in subtropical and tropical dry forests. Native dry forests in Hawaii presently cover less than 10% of their original area. Many sites that historically supported dry forest are now completely dominated by non-native species, particularly grasses. Within a grass-dominated site in leeward...

  20. Role of grass-legume communities in revegetation of a subalpine mine site in British Columbia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yamanaka, K

    1982-01-01

    This study describes an investigation of the potential for pioneer grass-legume communities to stabilize and ameliorate geologically-fresh soil leading to the establishment of a self-sustaining, progressive plant succession on a surface-mined subalpine site. The study area is located 2000 m above sea level in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Field studies revealed chronological trends in grass-legume communities at four sites revegetated during 1974-1978 including: species composition, legumes (Trifolium repens L., T. hybridum L. and Medicago sativa L.) performing increasingly poorly on the older sites; biomass changes, a shoot to root ratio (S/R) decreasing from 2.3 to 0.2 as the communities aged; and litter accumulation which continued even on the oldest site. Fertilizer (13-16-10) operationally applied at 150-391 kg/ha enhanced the growth of Dactylis gomerata L. and litter degradation, and acidified the soil. Nitrogen fertilization was also associated with two clear inverse relationships identified between D. glomerata and Festuca rubra L. biomass, and between soil pH and phosphorus levels. In greenhouse tests grasses were revealed to be more efficient soil nitrogen consumers than were legumes and nitrogen fixation decreased significantly (P < 0.01) and linearly with increasing grass seeding rates.

  1. Early stage litter decomposition across biomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ika Djukic; Sebastian Kepfer-Rojas; Inger Kappel Schmidt; Klaus Steenberg Larsen; Claus Beier; Björn Berg; Kris Verheyen; Adriano Caliman; Alain Paquette; Alba Gutiérrez-Girón; Alberto Humber; Alejandro Valdecantos; Alessandro Petraglia; Heather Alexander; Algirdas Augustaitis; Amélie Saillard; Ana Carolina Ruiz Fernández; Ana I. Sousa; Ana I. Lillebø; Anderson da Rocha Gripp; André-Jean Francez; Andrea Fischer; Andreas Bohner; Andrey Malyshev; Andrijana Andrić; Andy Smith; Angela Stanisci; Anikó Seres; Anja Schmidt; Anna Avila; Anne Probst; Annie Ouin; Anzar A. Khuroo; Arne Verstraeten; Arely N. Palabral-Aguilera; Artur Stefanski; Aurora Gaxiola; Bart Muys; Bernard Bosman; Bernd Ahrends; Bill Parker; Birgit Sattler; Bo Yang; Bohdan Juráni; Brigitta Erschbamer; Carmen Eugenia Rodriguez Ortiz; Casper T. Christiansen; E. Carol Adair; Céline Meredieu; Cendrine Mony; Charles A. Nock; Chi-Ling Chen; Chiao-Ping Wang; Christel Baum; Christian Rixen; Christine Delire; Christophe Piscart; Christopher Andrews; Corinna Rebmann; Cristina Branquinho; Dana Polyanskaya; David Fuentes Delgado; Dirk Wundram; Diyaa Radeideh; Eduardo Ordóñez-Regil; Edward Crawford; Elena Preda; Elena Tropina; Elli Groner; Eric Lucot; Erzsébet Hornung; Esperança Gacia; Esther Lévesque; Evanilde Benedito; Evgeny A. Davydov; Evy Ampoorter; Fabio Padilha Bolzan; Felipe Varela; Ferdinand Kristöfel; Fernando T. Maestre; Florence Maunoury-Danger; Florian Hofhansl; Florian Kitz; Flurin Sutter; Francisco Cuesta; Francisco de Almeida Lobo; Franco Leandro de Souza; Frank Berninger; Franz Zehetner; Georg Wohlfahrt; George Vourlitis; Geovana Carreño-Rocabado; Gina Arena; Gisele Daiane Pinha; Grizelle González; Guylaine Canut; Hanna Lee; Hans Verbeeck; Harald Auge; Harald Pauli; Hassan Bismarck Nacro; Héctor A. Bahamonde; Heike Feldhaar; Heinke Jäger; Helena C. Serrano; Hélène Verheyden; Helge Bruelheide; Henning Meesenburg; Hermann Jungkunst; Hervé Jactel; Hideaki Shibata; Hiroko Kurokawa; Hugo López Rosas; Hugo L. Rojas Villalobos; Ian Yesilonis; Inara Melece; Inge Van Halder; Inmaculada García Quirós; Isaac Makelele; Issaka Senou; István Fekete; Ivan Mihal; Ivika Ostonen; Jana Borovská; Javier Roales; Jawad Shoqeir; Jean-Christophe Lata; Jean-Paul Theurillat; Jean-Luc Probst; Jess Zimmerman; Jeyanny Vijayanathan; Jianwu Tang; Jill Thompson; Jiří Doležal; Joan-Albert Sanchez-Cabeza; Joël Merlet; Joh Henschel; Johan Neirynck; Johannes Knops; John Loehr; Jonathan von Oppen; Jónína Sigríður Þorláksdóttir; Jörg Löffler; José-Gilberto Cardoso-Mohedano; José-Luis Benito-Alonso; Jose Marcelo Torezan; Joseph C. Morina; Juan J. Jiménez; Juan Dario Quinde; Juha Alatalo; Julia Seeber; Jutta Stadler; Kaie Kriiska; Kalifa Coulibaly; Karibu Fukuzawa; Katalin Szlavecz; Katarína Gerhátová; Kate Lajtha; Kathrin Käppeler; Katie A. Jennings; Katja Tielbörger; Kazuhiko Hoshizaki; Ken Green; Lambiénou Yé; Laryssa Helena Ribeiro Pazianoto; Laura Dienstbach; Laura Williams; Laura Yahdjian; Laurel M. Brigham; Liesbeth van den Brink; Lindsey Rustad; al. et

    2018-01-01

    Through litter decomposition enormous amounts of carbon is emitted to the atmosphere. Numerous large-scale decomposition experiments have been conducted focusing on this fundamental soil process in order to understand the controls on the terrestrial carbon transfer to the atmosphere. However, previous studies were mostly based on site-specific litter and methodologies...

  2. Collecting marine litter during regular fish surveys

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sluis, van der M.T.; Hal, van R.

    2014-01-01

    This report presents the results of the marine litter monitoring on the IBTS survey of 2014 and the BTS survey of 2013. Since 2013 marine litter is collected during the International Bottom Trawl Survey (IBTS) and Dutch Beam Trawl Survey (BTS) following a protocol developed by ICES. The composition

  3. Meadow-grass gall midge

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Lars Monrad

    The area with meadow-grass (Poa pratensis, L.) grown for seed production in Den-mark is a significant proportion of the entire seed production. The meadow-grass gall midge (Mayetiola schoberi, Barnes 1958) is of considerable economic importance since powerful attacks can reduce the yield...

  4. A large outbreak of bovine botulism possibly linked to a massive contamination of grass silage by type D/C Clostridium botulinum spores on a farm with dairy and poultry operations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Relun, A; Dorso, L; Douart, A; Chartier, C; Guatteo, R; Mazuet, C; Popoff, M R; Assié, S

    2017-12-01

    Type D bovine botulism outbreaks associated with poultry litter are increasingly reported in European countries, but the circumstances of exposure to Clostridium botulinum toxins remain unclear. In spring 2015, a large type D/C bovine botulism outbreak affected a farm with dairy and poultry operations. Epidemiological and laboratory investigations strongly suggest that the outbreak was caused by feeding cattle with insufficiently acidified grass silage that was contaminated by type D/C C. botulinum spores. The source of the spores remains unclear, but could have been a stack of poultry litter stored in the grass silage pasture before harvesting. The presence of putrefied poultry carcasses mixed in with the litter is relatively unlikely considering the careful daily removal of poultry carcasses. These findings reinforce the importance of proper ensiling of feed materials and highlight the need for safe disposal of poultry litter, even in the case of good management of poultry deadstock, in order to prevent bovine botulism.

  5. Extending juvenility in grasses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaeppler, Shawn; de Leon Gatti, Natalia; Foerster, Jillian

    2017-04-11

    The present invention relates to compositions and methods for modulating the juvenile to adult developmental growth transition in plants, such as grasses (e.g. maize). In particular, the invention provides methods for enhancing agronomic properties in plants by modulating expression of GRMZM2G362718, GRMZM2G096016, or homologs thereof. Modulation of expression of one or more additional genes which affect juvenile to adult developmental growth transition such as Glossy15 or Cg1, in conjunction with such modulation of expression is also contemplated. Nucleic acid constructs for down-regulation of GRMZM2G362718 and/or GRMZM2G096016 are also contemplated, as are transgenic plants and products produced there from, that demonstrate altered, such as extended juvenile growth, and display associated phenotypes such as enhanced yield, improved digestibility, and increased disease resistance. Plants described herein may be used, for example, as improved forage or feed crops or in biofuel production.

  6. Separating the mink dam from the litter at 7 or 8 weeks after delivery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Malmkvist, Jens; Palme, Rupert; Larsen, Torben

    2015-01-01

    The optimal timing of separating the mink dam from the litter is suggested to be a balance between the partly conflicting needs of the mother and the kits. Early removal of the dam or partial removal of the litter may protect the dam against exhaustion. Little is known about the maternal motivation...... around the time of separation. Therefore, we investigated the effects of separating the dam from the litter, using brown first-parity dams (N=374) randomly assigned within each date of delivery to two treatment groups: The dam was taken away from the litter either at day 49 ±1 (7w, N=185) or at day 56 ±1...... (8w, N=189) after birth. The aim was to investigate whether the dams had a different motivation to take care of the litter after 7 and 8 weeks, estimated by non-invasive determination of cortisol (FCM: Faecal Corticsol Metabolites) and dam calls the first week after separation. The two treatment...

  7. The effects of leaf litter nutrient pulses on Alliaria petiolata performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert W. Heckman

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Nutrient pulses can facilitate species establishment and spread in new habitats, particularly when one species more effectively uses that nutrient pulse. Biological differences in nutrient acquisition between native and exotic species may facilitate invasions into a variety of habitats including deciduous forest understories. Alliaria petiolata (Bieb. Cavara & Grande is an important invader of deciduous forest understories throughout much of North America. These understory communities contain many species which perform the majority of their growth and reproduction before canopy closure in spring. Because A. petiolata is a wintergreen biennial that can be active during autumn and winter, it may utilize nutrients released from decaying leaf litter before its competitors. To investigate this we manipulated the timing of leaf litter addition (fall or spring and experimentally simulated the nutrient pulse from decaying leaves using artificial fertilizer. To determine whether A. petiolata affected the abundance of understory competitors, we also removed A. petiolata from one treatment. A. petiolata that received early nutrients exhibited greater growth. Treatments receiving fall leaf litter or artificial nutrients had greater A. petiolata adult biomass than plots receiving spring nutrient additions (leaf litter or artificial nutrients. However, fall leaf litter addition had no effect on the richness of competitor species. Thus, wintergreen phenology may contribute to the spread of A. petiolata through deciduous forest understories, but may not explain community-level impacts of A. petiolata in deciduous forests.

  8. Study on hydrological functions of litter layers in North China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiang Li

    Full Text Available Canopy interception, throughfall, stemflow, and runoff have received considerable attention during the study of water balance and hydrological processes in forested ecosystems. Past research has either neglected or underestimated the role of hydrological functions of litter layers, although some studies have considered the impact of various characteristics of rainfall and litter on litter interception. Based on both simulated rainfall and litter conditions in North China, the effect of litter mass, rainfall intensity and litter type on the maximum water storage capacity of litter (S and litter interception storage capacity (C were investigated under five simulated rainfall intensities and four litter masses for two litter types. The results indicated: 1 the S values increased linearly with litter mass, and the S values of broadleaf litter were on average 2.65 times larger than the S values of needle leaf litter; 2 rainfall intensity rather than litter mass determined the maximum interception storage capacity (Cmax ; Cmax increased linearly with increasing rainfall intensity; by contrast, the minimum interception storage capacity (Cmin showed a linear relationship with litter mass, but a poor correlation with rainfall intensity; 3 litter type impacted Cmax and Cmin ; the values of Cmax and Cmin for broadleaf litter were larger than those of needle leaf litter, which indicated that broadleaf litter could intercepte and store more water than needle leaf litter; 4 a gap existed between Cmax and Cmin , indicating that litter played a significant role by allowing rainwater to infiltrate or to produce runoff rather than intercepting it and allowing it to evaporate after the rainfall event; 5 Cmin was always less than S at the same litter mass, which should be considered in future interception predictions. Vegetation and precipitation characteristics played important roles in hydrological characteristics.

  9. Skin interface pressure on the NATO litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridges, Elizabeth J; Schmelz, Joseph O; Mazer, Stephen

    2003-04-01

    The NATO litter serves as a transport device and hospital bed during all types of operations. Little is known about the skin interface pressure on this litter. The purpose of this study was to determine whether various types of padding on the litter and body position affect the peak skin interface pressure and the total body area exposed to interface pressures above 30 mm Hg at different body areas. Thirty-two subjects participated. A repeated measures design was used. The surface effect was statistically significant for all peak pressure and surface area analyses (repeated-measures analysis of variance, p patients if feasible. Preventive measures (turning, elevating the heels) are still required.

  10. An Approach to Litter Generation and Littering Practices in a Mexico City Neighborhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cecilia E. Muñoz-Cadena

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Urban litter is generated by human societies everywhere. Some litter is recyclable waste. In this study, the acronym RMSW is used to refer to recyclable municipal solid waste generated in streets. Public attitude towards RMSW generation, generators’ perceptions, and quantification of RMSW in streets were examined in a Mexico City neighborhood, where litter presence causes major environmental problems affecting the population year after year. Interviews with neighborhood residents and item counts were carried out from 2010 to 2011. In all, 58% of interviewees reported generating RMSW at variable frequencies while 42% said they did not generate this kind of waste. Laziness, lack of vigilance by municipal authorities, no litter bins in streets, and imitation were the main causes identified by interviewees as reasons for littering. Potential litter generators may be of any age, educational level or income. Interviewees’ perception of RMSW generation was compared with item counts in the neighborhood studied.

  11. Litter quality mediated nitrogen effect on plant litter decomposition regardless of soil fauna presence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weidong; Chao, Lin; Yang, Qingpeng; Wang, Qingkui; Fang, Yunting; Wang, Silong

    2016-10-01

    Nitrogen addition has been shown to affect plant litter decomposition in terrestrial ecosystems. The way that nitrogen deposition impacts the relationship between plant litter decomposition and altered soil nitrogen availability is unclear, however. This study examined 18 co-occurring litter types in a subtropical forest in China in terms of their decomposition (1 yr of exposure in the field) with nitrogen addition treatment (0, 0.4, 1.6, and 4.0 mol·N·m -2 ·yr -1 ) and soil fauna exclusion (litter bags with 0.1 and 2 cm mesh size). Results showed that the plant litter decomposition rate is significantly reduced because of nitrogen addition; the strength of the nitrogen addition effect is closely related to the nitrogen addition levels. Plant litters with diverse quality responded to nitrogen addition differently. When soil fauna was present, the nitrogen addition effect on medium-quality or high-quality plant litter decomposition rate was -26% ± 5% and -29% ± 4%, respectively; these values are significantly higher than that of low-quality plant litter decomposition. The pattern is similar when soil fauna is absent. In general, the plant litter decomposition rate is decreased by soil fauna exclusion; an average inhibition of -17% ± 1.5% was exhibited across nitrogen addition treatment and litter quality groups. However, this effect is weakly related to nitrogen addition treatment and plant litter quality. We conclude that the variations in plant litter quality, nitrogen deposition, and soil fauna are important factors of decomposition and nutrient cycling in a subtropical forest ecosystem. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  12. DESIGN OF GRASS BRIQUETTE MACHINE

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    E-mail addresses: 1 mike.ajieh@gmail.com, 2 dracigboanugo@yahoo.com, ... machine design was considered for processing biomass of grass origin. The machine operations include pulverization, compaction and extrusion of the briquettes.

  13. Breeding for Grass Seed Yield

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boelt, Birte; Studer, Bruno

    2010-01-01

    Seed yield is a trait of major interest for many fodder and amenity grass species and has received increasing attention since seed multiplication is economically relevant for novel grass cultivars to compete in the commercial market. Although seed yield is a complex trait and affected...... by agricultural practices as well as environmental factors, traits related to seed production reveal considerable genetic variation, prerequisite for improvement by direct or indirect selection. This chapter first reports on the biological and physiological basics of the grass reproduction system, then highlights...... important aspects and components affecting the seed yield potential and the agronomic and environmental aspects affecting the utilization and realization of the seed yield potential. Finally, it discusses the potential of plant breeding to sustainably improve total seed yield in fodder and amenity grasses....

  14. Grass and weed killer poisoning

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002838.htm Grass and weed killer poisoning To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Many weed killers contain dangerous chemicals that are harmful if ...

  15. Can't See the Wood for the Litter: Evaluation of Litter Behavior Modification in a Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindemann-Matthies, Petra; Bonigk, Isabel; Benkowitz, Dorothee

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated elementary school children's (n = 171) litter behavior during guided forest tours following two different treatments. Four classes received a verbal appeal not to litter in the forest, while another four classes received both a verbal appeal and a demonstration of the desired litter behavior (picking up litter, putting it…

  16. Pulse frequency and soil-litter mixing alter the control of cumulative precipitation over litter decomposition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joly, François-Xavier; Kurupas, Kelsey L; Throop, Heather L

    2017-09-01

    Macroclimate has traditionally been considered the predominant driver of litter decomposition. However, in drylands, cumulative monthly or annual precipitation typically fails to predict decomposition. In these systems, the windows of opportunity for decomposer activity may rather depend on the precipitation frequency and local factors affecting litter desiccation, such as soil-litter mixing. We used a full-factorial microcosm experiment to disentangle the relative importance of cumulative precipitation, pulse frequency, and soil-litter mixing on litter decomposition. Decomposition, measured as litter carbon loss, saturated with increasing cumulative precipitation when pulses were large and infrequent, suggesting that litter moisture no longer increased and/or microbial activity was no longer limited by water availability above a certain pulse size. More frequent precipitation pulses led to increased decomposition at high levels of cumulative precipitation. Soil-litter mixing consistently increased decomposition, with greatest relative increase (+194%) under the driest conditions. Collectively, our results highlight the need to consider precipitation at finer temporal scale and incorporate soil-litter mixing as key driver of decomposition in drylands. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  17. Pengaruh Berbagai Jenis Bahan Litter terhadap Kualitas Litter Broiler Fase Finisher di Closed House

    OpenAIRE

    Tiwi Metasari; Dian Septinova; Veronica Wanniatie

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this research was to 1) determine the effect of the use of rice husk, wood shavings,rice straw as litter material on litter quality for broiler during the finisher phase in closed house, 2)determine the best type of litter material on litter quality for broiler during the finisher phase in closedhouse. The duration of the research was 26 days. The research was started from 15 April to 10 May2014 in the closed house owned by PT. Rama Jaya Lampung Krawang Sari Village, the District o...

  18. Performance, carcass yield and litter quality of broilers raised on litters treated with micro-organisms

    OpenAIRE

    Cruz,Dayane Prado da; Otutumi,Luciana Kazue; Piau Júnior,Ranulfo; Cervantes,Rodrigo Panucci; Mezalira,Taniara Suelen; Gerônimo,Edson

    2013-01-01

    The present paper aimed at evaluating the effect of adding beneficial micro-organisms to the litters on litter quality, performance and carcass yield for broilers. A total of 240 one-day chicks were used, and randomly distributed in blocks with four treatments and four replications. The following treatments were carried out in the housing: Treatment 1 – Control with weekly spraying of water on the litters; Treatment 2 – Litter treated with a mixture of inoculated and fermented meal by micro-o...

  19. PERFORMANCE, CARCASS YIELD AND LITTER QUALITY OF BROILERS RAISED ON LITTERS TREATED WITH MICRO-ORGANISMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dayane Prado da Cruz

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The present paper aimed at evaluating the effect of adding beneficial micro-organisms to the litters on litter quality, performance and carcass yield for broilers. A total of 240 one-day chicks were used, and randomly distributed in blocks with four treatments and four replications. The following treatments were carried out in the housing: Treatment 1 – Control with weekly spraying of water on the litters; Treatment 2 – Litter treated with a mixture of inoculated and fermented meal by micro-organisms and weekly spraying of water; Treatment 3 – Litter treated by weekly spraying of micro-organisms; Treatment 4 – Litter treated with the same mixture of meals from treatment two and weekly spraying of micro-organisms. Performance was evaluated by the feed consumption, weight gain, feed conversion, viability and carcass, breast and leg yield. From litter samples, pH, dry matter, ashes and nitrogen were evaluated. No differences were found among the treatments. In the conditions the animals were raised, it can be concluded that the treatment on the litter does not affect performance, carcass yield and quality of the litter for broilers.

  20. Arst on patsiendi poolel / Galina Litter

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Litter, Galina, 1956-

    2006-01-01

    Naistearst Galina Litter seadusest, mis lubab alaealistel ilma vanema nõusolekuta aborti teha. Vastus artiklile : Varro Vooglaid. Vanemate vastutus - kas reaalne või paljasõnaline? // Õpetajate Leht (2006) 13. okt., lk. 1, 7

  1. High green fodder yielding new grass varieties

    OpenAIRE

    C. Babu, K. Iyanar and A. Kalamani

    2014-01-01

    Two high biomass yielding forage grass varieties one each in Cumbu Napier hybrid and Guinea grass have been evolved at the Department of Forage Crops, Centre for Plant Breeding and Genetics, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore and identified for release at national (All India) level as Cumbu Napier hybrid grass CO (BN) 5 and Guinea grass CO (GG) 3 during 2012 and 2013 respectively. Cumbu Napier hybrid grass CO (BN) 5 secured first rank at all national level with reference to green ...

  2. Effects of litter manipulation on litter decomposition in a successional gradients of tropical forests in southern China

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Hao; Gurmesa, Geshere A.; Liu, Lei

    2014-01-01

    Global changes such as increasing CO2, rising temperature, and land-use change are likely to drive shifts in litter inputs to forest floors, but the effects of such changes on litter decomposition remain largely unknown. We initiated a litter manipulation experiment to test the response of litter...... decomposition to litter removal/addition in three successional forests in southern China, namely masson pine forest (MPF), mixed coniferous and broadleaved forest (MF) and monsoon evergreen broadleaved forest (MEBF). Results showed that litter removal decreased litter decomposition rates by 27%, 10% and 8...

  3. Abiotic factors affect the recruitment and biomass of perennial grass and evergreen shrub seedlings in denuded areas of Patagonian Monte rangelands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosco, Tomás; Bertiller, Mónica Beatriz; Carrera, Analía Lorena

    2018-07-15

    Assessing the ability of key species to cope with environmental stresses in disturbed areas is an important issue for recovery of degraded arid ecosystem. Our objective was to evaluate the effect of soil moisture, exposure to UV radiation, and presence/absence of litter with different chemistry on soil N, recruitment and biomass of seedlings of perennial grass (Poa ligularis and Nassella tenuis) and evergreen shrub species (Atriplex lampa and Larrea divaricata) in denuded areas. We carried out a microcosm experiment with soil blocks (28 cm depth) sowed with seeds of the target species, subjected to different levels of litter type (perennial grass-evergreen shrub mixture, evergreen shrub mixture, and no litter), UV radiation (near ambient and reduced UV), and soil water (high: 15-25% and low 5-15%). Periodically, during 6 months, we assessed soil-N (total and inorganic) at two depths and species seedling recruitment at microcosms. Additionally, emerged seedlings of each species were transplanted to individual pots containing soil and subjected to the same previous factors during 12 months. Then, all plants were harvested and biomass assessed. Only inorganic soil-N at the upper soil varied among treatments increasing with the presence of evergreen shrub litter, exposure to ambient UV, and high soil water. Inorganic soil-N, promoted by near ambient UV and high soil water, had a positive effect on recruitment of perennial grasses and A. lampa. Both litter types promoted the recruitment of perennial grasses. Evergreen shrub litter and high soil water promoted the recruitment of L. divaricata. Seedling biomass of perennial grasses increased with high soil water and reduced UV. Ambient UV had positive or null effects on biomass of evergreen shrub seedlings. High soil water increased biomass of L. divaricata seedlings. We concluded that soil water appeared as the most limiting factor for seedling recruitment of all species whereas inorganic soil N limited the

  4. Restoration of Tidal Flow to Impounded Salt Marsh Exerts Mixed Effect on Leaf Litter Decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, B. A.; Schade, J. D.; Foreman, K.

    2015-12-01

    Salt marsh impoundments (e.g. roads, levees) disconnect marshes from ocean tides, which impairs ecosystem services and often promotes invasive species. Numerous restoration projects now focus on removing impoundments. Leaf litter decomposition is a central process in salt marsh carbon and nutrient cycles, and this study investigated the extent to which marsh restoration alters litter decomposition rates. We considered three environmental factors that can potentially change during restoration: salinity, tidal regime, and dominant plant species. A one-month field experiment (Cape Cod, MA) measured decay of litter bags in impounded, restored, and natural marshes under ambient conditions. A two-week lab experiment measured litter decay in controlled incubations under experimental treatments for salinity (1ppt and 30 ppt), tidal regime (inundated and 12 hr wet-dry cycles), and plant species (native Spartina alterniflora and invasive Phragmites australis). S. alterniflora decomposed faster in situ than P. australis (14±1.0% mass loss versus 0.74±0.69%). Corroborating this difference in decomposition, S. alterniflora supported greater microbial respiration during lab incubation, measured as CO2 flux from leaf litter and biological oxygen demand of water containing leached organic matter (OM). However, nutrient analysis of plant tissue and leached OM show P. australis released more nitrogen than S. alterniflora. Low salinity treatments in both lab and field experiments decayed more rapidly than high salinity treatments, suggesting that salinity inhibited microbial activity. Manipulation of inundation regime did not affect decomposition. These findings suggest the reintroduction of tidal flow to an impounded salt marsh can have mixed effects; recolonization by the native cordgrass could supply labile OM to sediment and slow carbon sequestration, while an increase in salinity might inhibit decomposition and accelerate sequestration.

  5. Effect of the litter material on drinking water quality in broiler production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RG Garcia

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Considering the importance of drinking water and its effect on broiler performance, drinking water quality was studied using six different litter materials. The presence of coliform bacteria and Escherichia coli was investigated. The following litter materials were used in the trial: wood shavings, rice husks, chopped Napier grass (Pennisetum pupureum, 50% sugarcane bagasse (Saccharum L. + 50% wood shavings, 50% sugarcane bagasse (Saccharum L. + 50% rice husks, and plain sugarcane bagasse (Saccharum L.. A number of 1620 Ross® one-day-old chicks were reared in 54 pens measuring 4.5 m² each, equipped with a bell drinker and a tube feeder. Water samples were collected in sterile tubes on days 28 and 42 of the rearing period, and submitted to the laboratory for analyses. Microbiological data were organized by classes expressed in a logarithm scale, where the lowest contamination corresponds to class 1 and the highest contamination to class 4. Results showed that total coliform contamination was higher on day 28 than in the end of the rearing period, and that E. coli presence was detected during both analyzed periods. The litter materials that presented lower degree of water contamination, predominantly class 1, were sugarcane bagasse and 50% of sugarcane bagasse and 50% of rice husks.

  6. Temperatures below leaf litter during winter prescribed burns: implications for litter-roosting bats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger W. Perry; Virginia L. McDaniel

    2015-01-01

    Some bat species, including eastern red bats (Lasiurus borealis), roost for short periods beneath leaf litter on the forest floor during winter in the south-eastern USA, a region subjected to frequent fire. The variability in fuel consumption, the heterogeneous nature of burns, and the effects of litter and duff moisture on forest-floor...

  7. Microbiological Safety of Chicken Litter or Chicken Litter-Based Organic Fertilizers: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhao Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Chicken litter or chicken litter-based organic fertilizers are usually recycled into the soil to improve the structure and fertility of agricultural land. As an important source of nutrients for crop production, chicken litter may also contain a variety of human pathogens that can threaten humans who consume the contaminated food or water. Composting can inactivate pathogens while creating a soil amendment beneficial for application to arable agricultural land. Some foodborne pathogens may have the potential to survive for long periods of time in raw chicken litter or its composted products after land application, and a small population of pathogenic cells may even regrow to high levels when the conditions are favorable for growth. Thermal processing is a good choice for inactivating pathogens in chicken litter or chicken litter-based organic fertilizers prior to land application. However, some populations may become acclimatized to a hostile environment during build-up or composting and develop heat resistance through cross-protection during subsequent high temperature treatment. Therefore, this paper reviews currently available information on the microbiological safety of chicken litter or chicken litter-based organic fertilizers, and discusses about further research on developing novel and effective disinfection techniques, including physical, chemical, and biological treatments, as an alternative to current methods.

  8. The Effect of Litter Position on Ultraviolet Photodegradation of Standing Dead Litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Y.; King, J. Y.

    2012-12-01

    In dryland ecosystems, models incorporating only biotic mechanisms usually underestimate the decay rate of plant litter. Photodegradation, an abiotic process through which solar radiation breaks down organic matter, has recently been proposed as an important pathway of litter decomposition in dryland ecosystems, accounting for as much as 25 to 60% of mass loss. However, it remains unclear what factors control the relative importance of photodegradation and biotic decomposition. It is hypothesized that this balance is affected by the location of litter within the litter layer (or thatch): in upper layers of thatch, photodegradation is significant because litter is exposed to sunlight; in lower layers where litter is strongly shaded, photodegradation is negligible compared to biotic decomposition. In August 2011, a field experiment was initiated at the University of California's Sedgwick Reserve, Santa Ynez, CA, in order to understand how ultraviolet (UV) radiation and litter position within the thatch affect litter decomposition. Two levels of UV radiation (280-400 nm) are achieved by screens: "UV-Pass" (transmitting > 81% of UV radiation) and "UV-Block" (transmitting plant litter was 19% higher in UV-Pass than in UV-Block treatments, but there was no difference at the top of the thatch. Because lignin is recalcitrant to biotic decomposition, a greater proportion of lignin could remain in litter where biotic decomposition was faster. Therefore, the pattern of lignin concentration supports the interpretation that greater biotic decomposition occurred under the UV-Pass treatment. Regardless of UV manipulation, litter mass loss was 25% faster at the top of the thatch than at the bottom. Litter at the top of the thatch also had 6% higher cellulose concentration and 13% lower lignin concentration than at the bottom of the thatch after 9 months of field exposure. Photodegradation (by UV and visible light) likely contributed more to decomposition at the top of the thatch

  9. Quality of poultry litter submitted to different treatments in five consecutive flocks Qualidade da cama de frango submetida a diferentes tratamentos em cinco lotes consecutivos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Carlos Loch

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available It was evaluated the effects of poultry litter treatment on moisture content, pH, density and volatilized ammonia for five consecutive flocks of broiler chicken breeding. It was used 640 birds per flock as a complete randomized design with eight treatments and four replicates. The treatments were the following: 1 non-treated litter; 2 litter submitted to in-house composting; 3 litter treated with aluminum sulfate; 4 litter submitted to gypsum; 5 litter treated with quicklime; 6 litter treated with dolomitic limestone; 7 litter treated with zeolite and 8 litter treated with charcoal. Chopped elephant-grass hay was used as poultry litter in all flocks. Fermentation in the shed increased moisture content of the litters in the second and first flocks on 21 and 42 days of breeding, respectively. There was no difference on density among treatments. Aluminum sulfate reduced pH of the litters in all flocks at 21 days of breding. On 42 days of breeding, pH of the litters was reduced in the litters with aluminum sulfate and gypsum in the first, second and forth flocks. On 21 days, aluminum sulfate reduced the volatilized ammonia in the first, third and forth flocks, and on 42 days, there was a reduction of volatilized ammonia in the litters with aluminum sulfate in the forth flock. Aluminum sulfate can improve quality of poultry litter of chopped elephant-grass hay by reducing pH and ammonia volatilization.Foram avaliados os efeitos do tratamento da cama de frango sobre o teor de umidade, o pH, a densidade e a amônia volatilizada durante cinco lotes consecutivos de criação de frangos de corte. Foram utilizadas 640 aves por lote em delineamento inteiramente casualizado com oito tratamentos e quatro repetições. Os tratamentos foram: 1 cama não-tratada; 2 cama submetida à compostagem dentro do galpão; 3 cama tratada com sulfato de alumínio; 4 cama tratada com gesso agrícola; 5 cama tratada com cal virgem; 6 cama tratada com calcário dolomítico; 7

  10. Broiler diet modification and litter storage: impacts on phosphorus in litters, soils, and runoff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGrath, Joshua M; Sims, J Thomas; Maguire, Rory O; Saylor, William W; Angel, C Roselina; Turner, Benjamin L

    2005-01-01

    Modifying broiler diets to mitigate water quality concerns linked to excess phosphorus (P) in regions of intensive broiler production has recently increased. Our goals were to evaluate the effects of dietary modification, using phytase and reduced non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) supplementation, on P speciation in broiler litters, changes in litter P forms during long-term storage, and subsequent impacts of diets on P in runoff from litter-amended soils. Four diets containing two levels of NPP with and without phytase were fed to broilers in a three-flock floor pen study. After removal of the third flock, litters were stored for 440 d at their initial moisture content (MC; 24%) and at a MC of 40%. Litter P fractions and orthophosphate and phytate P concentrations were determined before and after storage. After storage, litters were incorporated with a sandy and silt loam and simulated rainfall was applied. Phytase and reduced dietary NPP significantly reduced litter total P. Reducing dietary NPP decreased water-extractable inorganic phosphorus (IP) and the addition of dietary phytase reduced NaOH- and HCl-extractable organic P in litter, which correlated well with orthophosphate and phytic acid measured by 31P nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), respectively. Although dry storage caused little change in P speciation, wet storage increased concentrations of water-soluble IP, which increased reactive P in runoff from litter-amended soils. Therefore, diet modification with phytase and reduced NPP could be effective in reducing P additions on a watershed scale. Moreover, efforts to minimize litter MC during storage may reduce the potential for dissolved P losses in runoff.

  11. Decomposition of standing litter in arid grasslands: Interactions between sunlight, non-rainfall moisture, microbes, and plant traits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logan, J. R. V.; Jacobson, P. J.; Jacobson, K. M.; Evans, S.

    2017-12-01

    Although arid lands make up 40% of the Earth's land surface, we still lack a strong understanding of carbon cycling and plant decomposition in these systems. One reason for this is that field studies typically only focus on decomposition at or below the ground surface even though standing dead litter (material that has not yet fallen to the ground) accounts for more than 50% of total necromass in many of these systems. While recent work has begun to recognize the important and unique aspects of standing litter decomposition, few studies have investigated specific mechanisms controlling rates of mass loss. We hypothesized that initial photodegradation of the outer plant cuticle of standing litter is an important determinant of litter decomposition because this process increases moisture absorption and subsequent opportunities for biological decomposition. Our preliminary results offer support for this hypothesis. We found that standing grass stems with their cuticles artificially removed had greater water absorbance and more than 400% greater mass loss over a 6-month period relative to controls with intact cuticles. Additionally, spectroscopic measurements of cuticle integrity showed damage to the litter surface after a period of extended photodegradation, allowing increased moisture uptake during simulated fog/dew events. These findings are especially important in the context of recent work by us and others showing that non-rainfall moisture (fog, dew, and water vapor) plays a much larger role in arid land decomposition than previously thought. Improving our understanding of the mechanisms driving decomposition of standing litter will enable us to develop a more predictive understanding of carbon storage in arid lands.

  12. ECONOMIC RETURNS FROM REDUCING POULTRY LITTER PHOSPHORUS WITH MICROBIAL PHYTASE

    OpenAIRE

    Bosch, Darrell J.; Zhu, Minkang; Kornegay, Ervin T.

    1997-01-01

    Requiring that crop applications of manure be based on phosphorus content (P-standard) could increase poultry litter disposal costs. Microbial phytase reduces litter P content and could reduce litter disposal costs under a P-standard. For a representative Virginia turkey farm, phytase costs $2,500 and could increase value of litter used for fertilizer on the turkey farm by $390 and reduce supplemental P feed costs by $1,431. Based on assumed litter demand and supply, estimated litter export p...

  13. The effect of lignin photodegradation on decomposability of Calamagrostis epigeios grass litter

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Frouz, J.; Cajthaml, Tomáš; Mudrák, Ondřej

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 22, č. 6 (2011), s. 1247-1254 ISSN 0923-9820 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50200510; CEZ:AV0Z60660521 Keywords : Thermochemolysis-GC-MS * (13)C NMR * Decomposition Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 2.017, year: 2011

  14. Invasive earthworms interact with abiotic conditions to influence the invasion of common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth, Alexander M; Whitfeld, Timothy J S; Lodge, Alexandra G; Eisenhauer, Nico; Frelich, Lee E; Reich, Peter B

    2015-05-01

    Common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica L.) is one of the most abundant and ecologically harmful non-native plants in forests of the Upper Midwest United States. At the same time, European earthworms are invading previously glaciated areas in this region, with largely anecdotal evidence suggesting they compound the negative effects of buckthorn and influence the invasibility of these forests. Germination and seedling establishment are important control points for colonization by any species, and manipulation of the conditions influencing these life history stages may provide insight into why invasive species are successful in some environments and not others. Using a greenhouse microcosm experiment, we examined the effects of important biotic and abiotic factors on the germination and seedling establishment of common buckthorn. We manipulated light levels, leaf litter depth and earthworm presence to investigate the independent and interactive effects of these treatments on buckthorn establishment. We found that light and leaf litter depth were significant predictors of buckthorn germination but that the presence of earthworms was the most important factor; earthworms interacted with light and leaf litter to increase the number and biomass of buckthorn across all treatments. Path analysis suggested both direct and moisture-mediated indirect mechanisms controlled these processes. The results suggest that the action of earthworms may provide a pathway through which buckthorn invades forests of the Upper Midwest United States. Hence, researchers and managers should consider co-invasion of plants and earthworms when investigating invasibility and creating preemptive or post-invasion management plans.

  15. Natural zeolites in diet or litter of broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, A F; Almeida, D S De; Yuri, F M; Zimmermann, O F; Gerber, M W; Gewehr, C E

    2016-04-01

    This study aims to analyse the influence of adding natural zeolites (clinoptilolite) to the diet or litter of broilers and their effects on growth performance, carcass yield and litter quality. Three consecutive flocks of broilers were raised on the same sawdust litter, from d 1 to d 42 of age, and distributed in three treatments (control with no added zeolites, addition of 5 g/kg zeolite to diet and addition of 100 g/kg zeolites to litter). The addition of zeolites to the diet or litter did not affect growth performance or carcass yield. The addition of zeolites to the diet did not influence moisture content of the litter, ammonia volatilisation was reduced only in the first flock and pH of litter was reduced in the second and third flock. However, the addition of zeolites to the litter reduced moisture content, litter pH and ammonia volatilisation in all flocks analysed. The addition of 5 g/kg zeolite to the diet in three consecutive flocks was not effective in maintaining litter quality, whereas the addition of 100 g/kg natural zeolites to sawdust litter reduced litter moisture and ammonia volatilisation in three consecutive flocks raised on the same litter.

  16. The global stoichiometry of litter nitrogen mineralization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzoni, Stefano; Jackson, Robert B; Trofymow, John A; Porporato, Amilcare

    2008-08-01

    Plant residue decomposition and the nutrient release to the soil play a major role in global carbon and nutrient cycling. Although decomposition rates vary strongly with climate, nitrogen immobilization into litter and its release in mineral forms are mainly controlled by the initial chemical composition of the residues. We used a data set of approximately 2800 observations to show that these global nitrogen-release patterns can be explained by fundamental stoichiometric relationships of decomposer activity. We show how litter quality controls the transition from nitrogen accumulation into the litter to release and alters decomposers' respiration patterns. Our results suggest that decomposers lower their carbon-use efficiency to exploit residues with low initial nitrogen concentration, a strategy used broadly by bacteria and consumers across trophic levels.

  17. Control of climate and litter quality on leaf litter decomposition in different climatic zones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xinyue; Wang, Wei

    2015-09-01

    Climate and initial litter quality are the major factors influencing decomposition rates on large scales. We established a comprehensive database of terrestrial leaf litter decomposition, including 785 datasets, to examine the relationship between climate and litter quality and evaluate the factors controlling decomposition on a global scale, the arid and semi-arid (AS) zone, the humid middle and humid low (HL) latitude zones. Initial litter nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) concentration only increased with mean annual temperature (MAT) in the AS zone and decreased with mean annual precipitation (MAP) in the HL zone. Compared with nutrient content, MAT imposed less effect on initial litter lignin content than MAP. MAT were the most important decomposition driving factors on a global scale as well as in different climatic zones. MAP only significantly affected decomposition constants in AS zone. Although litter quality parameters also showed significant influence on decomposition, their importance was less than the climatic factors. Besides, different litter quality parameters exerted significant influence on decomposition in different climatic zones. Our results emphasized that climate consistently exerted important effects on decomposition constants across different climatic zones.

  18. Returning succession to downy brome dominated rangelands: roadblocks to perennial grass establishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    The most common cause of successional retrogression in the Great Basin is wildfires fueled by downy brome (Bromus tectorum). Downy brome invasion has reduced fire intervals from an estimated 60-100 years down to 5-10 years. Our previous research found that establishment of long-lived perennial grass...

  19. Spatial patterns of grasses and shrubs in an arid grassland environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the Chihuahuan Desert of Mexico and New Mexico, shrub invasion is a common problem, and once-abundant grassland ecosystems are being replaced by shrub-dominated habitat. The spatial arrangement of grasses and shrubs in these arid grasslands can provide better insight into community dynamics and c...

  20. The partitioning of litter carbon during litter decomposition under different rainfall patterns: a laboratory study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, X.; Szlavecz, K. A.; Langley, J. A.; Pitz, S.; Chang, C. H.

    2017-12-01

    Quantifying litter C into different C fluxes during litter decomposition is necessary to understand carbon cycling under changing climatic conditions. Rainfall patterns are predicted to change in the future, and their effects on the fate of litter carbon are poorly understood. Soils from deciduous forests in Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) in Maryland, USA were collected to reconstruct soil columns in the lab. 13C labeled tulip poplar leaf litter was used to trace carbon during litter decomposition. Top 1% and the mean of 15-minute historical precipitation data from nearby weather stations were considered as extreme and control rainfall intensity, respectively. Both intensity and frequency of rainfall were manipulated, while the total amount was kept constant. A pulse of CO2 efflux was detected right after each rainfall event in the soil columns with leaf litter. After the first event, CO2 efflux of the control rainfall treatment soils increased to threefold of the CO2 efflux before rain event and that of the extreme treatment soils increased to fivefold. However, in soils without leaf litter, CO2 efflux was suppressed right after rainfall events. After each rainfall event, the leaf litter contribution to CO2 efflux first showed an increase, decreased sharply in the following two days, and then stayed relatively constant. In soil columns with leaf litter, the order of cumulative CO2 efflux was control > extreme > intermediate. The order of cumulative CO2 efflux in the bare soil treatment was extreme > intermediate > control. The order of volume of leachate from different treatments was extreme > intermediate > control. Our initial results suggest that more intense rainfall events result in larger pulses of CO2, which is rarely measured in the field. Additionally, soils with and without leaf litter respond differently to precipitation events. This is important to consider in temperate regions where leaf litter cover changes throughout the year

  1. Status of exotic grasses and grass-like vegetation and potential impacts on wildlife in New England

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeStefano, Stephen

    2013-01-01

    The Northeastern section of the United States, known as New England, has seen vast changes in land cover and human population over the past 3 centuries. Much of the region is forested; grasslands and other open-land cover types are less common, but provide habitat for many species that are currently declining in abundance and distribution. New England also consists of some of the most densely populated and developed states in the country. The origin, distribution, and spread of exotic species are highly correlated with human development. As such, exotics are common throughout much of New England, including several species of graminoids (grasses and grass-like plants such as sedges and rushes). Several of the more invasive grass species can form expansive dense mats that exclude native plants, alter ecosystem structure and functions, and are perceived to provide little-to-no value as wildlife food or cover. Although little research has been conducted on direct impacts of exotic graminoids on wildlife populations in New England, several studies on the common reed (Phragmites australis) in salt marshes have shown this species to have variable effects as cover for birds and other wildlife, depending on the distribution of the plant (e.g., patches and borders of reeds are used more by wildlife than expansive densely growing stands). Direct impacts of other grasses on wildlife populations are largely unknown. However, many of the invasive graminoid species that are present in New England have the capability of outcompeting native plants and thereby potentially affecting associated fauna. Preservation, protection, and restoration of grassland and open-land cover types are complex but necessary challenges in the region to maintain biological and genetic diversity of grassland, wetland, and other open-land obligate species.

  2. Bioenergy production from roadside grass

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meyer, Ane Katharina Paarup; Ehimen, Ehiazesebhor Augustine; Holm-Nielsen, Jens Bo

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a study of the feasibility of utilising roadside vegetation for biogas production in Denmark. The potential biomass yield, methane yields, and the energy balances of using roadside grass for biogas production was investigated based on spatial analysis. The results show...

  3. Competition for soil nitrate and invasive weed resistance of three shrub-steppe growth forms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eamonn D. Leonard

    2007-01-01

    Determining mechanisms responsible for weed resistance and invasion success are two issues that have potential in aiding successful land management decisions. The first experiment evaluates the competitive effects of an invasive annual grass downy brome (Bromus tectorum L.), an invasive biennial forb dyer's woad (Isatis tinctoria...

  4. Influence of breed and environmental factors on litter parameters of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Influence of breed and environmental factors on litter parameters of rabbits ... There was a non-significant effect of season on litter site at birth, kits alive at birth and ... to rabbit reproduction as it influenced negatively more litter parameters than ...

  5. Long-term litter decomposition controlled by manganese redox cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keiluweit, Marco; Nico, Peter; Harmon, Mark E; Mao, Jingdong; Pett-Ridge, Jennifer; Kleber, Markus

    2015-09-22

    Litter decomposition is a keystone ecosystem process impacting nutrient cycling and productivity, soil properties, and the terrestrial carbon (C) balance, but the factors regulating decomposition rate are still poorly understood. Traditional models assume that the rate is controlled by litter quality, relying on parameters such as lignin content as predictors. However, a strong correlation has been observed between the manganese (Mn) content of litter and decomposition rates across a variety of forest ecosystems. Here, we show that long-term litter decomposition in forest ecosystems is tightly coupled to Mn redox cycling. Over 7 years of litter decomposition, microbial transformation of litter was paralleled by variations in Mn oxidation state and concentration. A detailed chemical imaging analysis of the litter revealed that fungi recruit and redistribute unreactive Mn(2+) provided by fresh plant litter to produce oxidative Mn(3+) species at sites of active decay, with Mn eventually accumulating as insoluble Mn(3+/4+) oxides. Formation of reactive Mn(3+) species coincided with the generation of aromatic oxidation products, providing direct proof of the previously posited role of Mn(3+)-based oxidizers in the breakdown of litter. Our results suggest that the litter-decomposing machinery at our coniferous forest site depends on the ability of plants and microbes to supply, accumulate, and regenerate short-lived Mn(3+) species in the litter layer. This observation indicates that biogeochemical constraints on bioavailability, mobility, and reactivity of Mn in the plant-soil system may have a profound impact on litter decomposition rates.

  6. ( Rosa damascena Mill.) dreg: an alternative litter material in broiler ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The present study was carried out to determine the effects of using dried rose dreg (DRD) as an alternative litter material for broiler performance and microbiological characteristics of litter. A total of 225 day-old broiler chicks was raised on pine wood shavings (PS), DRD and PS+DRD until 42 days. The effects of litter ...

  7. Differences in breeding bird assemblages related to reed canary grass cover cover and forest structure on the Upper Mississippi River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirsch, Eileen M.; Gray, Brian R.

    2017-01-01

    Floodplain forest of the Upper Mississippi River provides habitat for an abundant and diverse breeding bird community. However, reed canary grass Phalaris arundinacea invasion is a serious threat to the future condition of this forest. Reed canary grass is a well-known aggressive invader of wetland systems in the northern tier states of the conterminous United States. Aided by altered flow regimes and nutrient inputs from agriculture, reed canary grass has formed dense stands in canopy gaps and forest edges, retarding tree regeneration. We sampled vegetation and breeding birds in Upper Mississippi River floodplain forest edge and interior areas to 1) measure reed canary grass cover and 2) evaluate whether the breeding bird assemblage responded to differences in reed canary grass cover. Reed canary grass was found far into forest interiors, and its cover was similar between interior and edge sites. Bird assemblages differed between areas with more or less reed canary grass cover (.53% cover breakpoint). Common yellowthroat Geothlypis trichas, black-capped chickadee Parus atricapillus, and rose-breasted grosbeak Pheucticus ludovicianus were more common and American redstart Setophaga ruticilla, great crested flycatcher Myiarchus crinitus, and Baltimore oriole Icterus galbula were less common in sites with more reed canary grass cover. Bird diversity and abundance were similar between sites with different reed canary grass cover. A stronger divergence in bird assemblages was associated with ground cover ,15%, resulting from prolonged spring flooding. These sites hosted more prothonotary warbler Protonotaria citrea, but they had reduced bird abundance and diversity compared to other sites. Our results indicate that frequently flooded sites may be important for prothonotary warblers and that bird assemblages shift in response to reed canary grass invasion.

  8. Leaf litter and roots as sources of mineral soil organic matter in temperate deciduous forest with and without earthworms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fahey, T.; Yavitt, J. B.

    2012-12-01

    We labeled sugar maple trees with 13C to quantify the separate contributions of decaying leaf litter and root turnover/rhizosphere C flux to mineral soil organic matter (SOM). Labeled leaf litter was applied to forest plots with and without earthworms and recovery of the label in SOM was quantified over three years. In parallel, label recovery was quantified in soils from the labeling chambers where all label was supplied by belowground C flux. In the absence of earthworms about half of the label added as leaf litter remained in the surface organic horizons after three years, with about 3% recovered in mineral SOM. The label was most enriched on silt + clay surfaces, representing precipitation of DOC derived from litter. Earthworms mixed nearly all the leaf litter into mineral soil within one year, and after two years the label was most enriched in particulate organic matter held within soil aggregates produced by worms. After three years 15-20% of the added label was recovered in mineral SOM. In the labeling chambers over 75% of belowground C allocation (BCA) was used in root and rhizosphere respiration in the first year after labeling. We recovered only 3.8% of estimated BCA in SOM after 3 years; however, expressed as a proportion of fine root production plus rhizosphere C flux, this value is 15.4%, comparable to that for leaf litter in the presence of earthworms. In conclusion, both roots and leaf litter contribute significantly to the formation of stabilized mineral SOM in temperate deciduous forests, and this process is profoundly altered by the invasion of lumbricid earthworms.

  9. Economic instruments and marine litter control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterhuis, F.H.; Papyrakis, E.; Boteler, B.

    2014-01-01

    This paper provides a comprehensive up-to-date review of the literature on the economic instruments that can reduce marine litter. We assess their cost of implementation, level of effectiveness as well as indirect environmental and socio-economic effects (externalities) that may arise as a result of

  10. Climate history shapes contemporary leaf litter decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael S. Strickland; Ashley D. Keiser; Mark A. Bradford

    2015-01-01

    Litter decomposition is mediated by multiple variables, of which climate is expected to be a dominant factor at global scales. However, like other organisms, traits of decomposers and their communities are shaped not just by the contemporary climate but also their climate history. Whether or not this affects decomposition rates is underexplored. Here we source...

  11. The global stoichiometry of litter nitrogen mineralization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefano Manzoni; Robert B. Jackson; John A. Trofymow; Amilcare Porporato

    2008-01-01

    Plant residue decomposition and the nutrient release to the soil play a major role in global carbon and nutrient cycling. Although decomposition rates vary strongly with climate, nitrogen immobilization into litter and its release in mineral forms are mainly controlled by the initial chemical composition of the residues. We used a data set of ~2800 observations to show...

  12. Solutions for global marine litter pollution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Löhr, Ansje; Savelli, Heidi; Beunen, Raoul; Kalz, Marco; Ragas, Ad; Van Belleghem, Frank

    2017-01-01

    Since the 1950s the amount of plastics in the marine environment has increased dramatically. Worldwide there is a growing concern about the risks and possible adverse effects of (micro)plastics. This paper reflects on the sources and effects of marine litter and the effects of policies and other

  13. Ecological restoration of litter in mined areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teresinha Gonçalves Bizuti, Denise; Nino Diniz, Najara; Schweizer, Daniella; de Marchi Soares, Thaís; Casagrande, José Carlos; Henrique Santin Brancalion, Pedro

    2016-04-01

    The success of ecological restoration projects depends on going monitoring of key ecological variables to determine if a desired trajectory has been established and, in the case of mining sites, nutrient cycling recovery plays an utmost importance. This study aimed to quantify and compare the annual litter production in native forests, and in restoration sites established in bauxite mines. We collected samples in 6 native forest remnants and 6 year-old restoration sites every month for a period of one year, in the city of Poços de Caldas/MG, SE Brazil. 120 wire collectors were used (0,6x0,6) and suspended 30cm above the soil surface. The material was dried until constant weight, weighed and fractionated in leaves, branches and reproductive material. The average annual litter production was 2,6 Mg ha-1 in native forests and 2,1 in forest in restoration sites, differing statistically. Litter production was higher in the rainy season, especially in September. Among the litter components, the largest contributor to total production was the fraction leaves, with 55,4% of the total dry weight of material collected, followed by reproductive material which contributed 24,5% and branches, with 20%. We conclude that the young areas in restoration process already restored important part, but still below the production observed in native areas.

  14. Utilization of poultry litter for pesticide bioremediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agricultural chemical products such as pesticides have been used to increase crop production, especially in undeveloped countries. Poultry litter, the combination of feces and bedding materials, has also been used as an alternative to improve soil quality for crop production. However, information re...

  15. Invasive Candidiasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases Mycotic Diseases Branch Invasive Candidiasis Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Global Emergence ... antifungal drugs. Learn more about C. auris Invasive candidiasis is an infection caused by a yeast (a ...

  16. Morphogenetic Litter Types of Bog Spruce Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. T. Efremova

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available For the first time the representation of moss litter morphogenetic structure of valley-riverside and streamside spruce forests was determined for the wetland intermountain area of Kuznetsk Alatau. In general, the litter of (green moss-hypnum spruce forest can be characterized as medium thickness (9–17 cm with high storage of organic matter (77–99 t/ha, which differs in neutral environmental conditions pH 6.8–7.0 and high percentage of ash 11–28 %. Formation litter types were identified, which depend on the content of mineral inclusions in organogenic substrate and the degree of its drainage. The differentiation of litter subhorizons was performed, visual diagnostic indicators of fermentative layers were characterized, and additional (indexes to indicate their specificity were developed. Peat- and peaty-fermentative, humified-fermentative and (black mold humus-fermentative layers were selected. Peat- and peaty-fermentative layers are characterized by content of platy peat macroaggregates of coarse vegetable composition, the presence of abundant fungal mycelium and soil animals are the primary decomposers – myriopoda, gastropoda mollusks. Humified-fermentative layers are identified by including the newly formed amorphous humus-like substances, nutty-granular structural parts of humus nature and soil animals’ humificators – enchytraeids and earthworms. (Black mold humus-fermentative layers are diagnosed by indicators with similar humified-fermentative, but differ from them in clay-humus composition of nutty-granular blue-grey parts. The nomenclature and classification of moss litter were developed on the basis of their diagnostic characteristics of fermentative layers – peat, peaty, reduced peaty, (black mold humus-peaty, reduced (black mold humus-peaty. Using the method of discriminant analysis, we revealed that the physical-chemical properties, mainly percentage of ash and decomposition degree of plant substrate, objectively

  17. Litter decomposition in southern Appalachian black locust and pine-hardwood stands: litter quality and nitrogen dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    David L. White; Bruce L. Haines

    1988-01-01

    The chemical quality of litter, through its interaction with macroclimate and the litter biota, largely regulates the rate of organic matter (OM) and nitrogen (N) turnover in the forest floor (Cromack 1973; Fogel and Cromack 1977; Meentemeyer 1978; Aber and Melillo 1982; Melillo et al. 1982). Litter quality is thought to be related to the N require-ment and...

  18. The fate of nitrogen mineralized from leaf litter — Initial evidence from 15N-labeled litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kathryn B. Piatek

    2011-01-01

    Decomposition of leaf litter includes microbial immobilization of nitrogen (N), followed by N mineralization. The fate of N mineralized from leaf litter is unknown. I hypothesized that N mineralized from leaf litter will be re-immobilized into other forms of organic matter, including downed wood. This mechanism may retain N in some forests. To test this hypothesis, oak...

  19. The relative importance of different grass components in controlling runoff and erosion on a hillslope under simulated rainfall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Changjia; Pan, Chengzhong

    2018-03-01

    The effects of vegetation cover on overland flow and erosion processes on hillslopes vary with vegetation type and spatial distribution and the different vegetation components, including the above- and below-ground biomass. However, few attempts have been made to quantify how these factors affect erosion processes. Field experimental plots (5 m × 2 m) with a slope of approximately 25° were constructed and simulated rainfall (60 mm hr-1) (Rainfall) and simulated rainfall combined with upslope overland flow (20 L min-1) (Rainfall + Flow) were applied. Three grass species were planted, specifically Astragalus adsurgens (A. adsurgens), Medicago sativa (M. sativa) and Cosmos bipinnatus (C. bipinnatus). To isolate and quantify the relative contributions of the above-ground grass parts (stems, litter cover and leaves) and the roots to reducing surface runoff and erosion, each of the three grass species was subjected to three treatments: intact grass control (IG), no litter or leaves (only the grass stems and roots were reserved) (NLL), and only roots remaining (OR). The results showed that planting grass significantly reduced overland flow rate and velocity and sediment yield, and the mean reductions were 21.8%, 29.1% and 67.1%, respectively. M. sativa performed the best in controlling water and soil losses due to its thick canopy and dense, fine roots. Grasses reduced soil erosion mainly during the early stage of overland flow generation. The above-ground grass parts primarily contributed to reducing overland flow rate and velocity, with mean relative contributions of 64% and 86%, respectively. The roots played a predominant role in reducing soil erosion, with mean contribution of 84%. Due to the impact of upslope inflow, overland flow rate and velocity and sediment yield increased under the Rainfall + Flow conditions. The results suggest that grass species on downslope parts of semi-arid hillslopes performed better in reducing water and soil losses. This study is

  20. Water addition, evaporation and water holding capacity of poultry litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlop, Mark W; Blackall, Patrick J; Stuetz, Richard M

    2015-12-15

    Litter moisture content has been related to ammonia, dust and odour emissions as well as bird health and welfare. Improved understanding of the water holding properties of poultry litter as well as water additions to litter and evaporation from litter will contribute to improved litter moisture management during the meat chicken grow-out. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how management and environmental conditions over the course of a grow-out affect the volume of water A) applied to litter, B) able to be stored in litter, and C) evaporated from litter on a daily basis. The same unit of measurement has been used to enable direct comparison-litres of water per square metre of poultry shed floor area, L/m(2), assuming a litter depth of 5cm. An equation was developed to estimate the amount of water added to litter from bird excretion and drinking spillage, which are sources of regular water application to the litter. Using this equation showed that water applied to litter from these sources changes over the course of a grow-out, and can be as much as 3.2L/m(2)/day. Over a 56day grow-out, the total quantity of water added to the litter was estimated to be 104L/m(2). Litter porosity, water holding capacity and water evaporation rates from litter were measured experimentally. Litter porosity decreased and water holding capacity increased over the course of a grow-out due to manure addition. Water evaporation rates at 25°C and 50% relative humidity ranged from 0.5 to 10L/m(2)/day. Evaporation rates increased with litter moisture content and air speed. Maintaining dry litter at the peak of a grow-out is likely to be challenging because evaporation rates from dry litter may be insufficient to remove the quantity of water added to the litter on a daily basis. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Detrimental Influence of Invasive Earthworms on North American Cold-Temperate Forest Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enerson, Isabel

    2012-01-01

    The topic of invasive earthworms is a timely concern that goes against many preconceived notions regarding the positive benefits of all worms. In the cold-temperate forests of North America invasive worms are threatening forest ecosystems, due to the changes they create in the soil, including decreases in C:N ratios and leaf litter, disruption of…

  2. Effects of elevated atmospheric CO2 on competition between the mosquitoes Aedes albopictus and Ae. triseriatus via changes in litter quality and production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, C; Baldwin, A H; Sullivan, J; Leisnham, P T

    2013-05-01

    Elevated atmospheric CO2 can alter aquatic communities via changes in allochthonous litter inputs. We tested effects of atmospheric CO2 on the invasive Aedes albopictus (Skuse) and native Aedes triseriatus (Say) (Diptera: Culicidae) via changes in competition for microbial food or resource inhibition/toxicity. Quercus alba L. litter was produced under elevated (879 ppm) and ambient (388 ppm) atmospheric CO2. Saplings grown at elevated CO2 produced greater litter biomass, which decayed faster and leached more tannins than saplings at ambient CO2. Competition was tested by raising larvae in different species and density combinations provisioned with elevated- or ambient-CO2 litter. Species-specific performance to water conditions was tested by providing single-species larval cohorts with increasing amounts of elevated- or ambient-CO2 litter, or increasing concentrations of tannic acid. Larval densities affected some fitness parameters of Ae. albopictus and Ae. triseriatus, but elevated-CO2 litter did not modify the effects of competition on population growth rates or any fitness parameters. Population growth rates and survival of each species generally were affected negatively by increasing amounts of both elevated- and ambient-CO2 litter from 0.252 to 2.016 g/liter, and tannic acid concentrations above 100 mg/liter were entirely lethal to both species. Aedes albopictus had consistently higher population growth rates than Ae. triseriatus. These results suggest that changes to litter production and chemistry from elevated CO2 are unlikely to affect the competitive outcome between Ae. albopictus and Ae. triseriatus, but that moderate increases in litter production increase population growth rates of both species until a threshold is exceeded that results in resource inhibition and toxicity.

  3. Harvesting Effects on Species Composition and Distribution of Cover Attributes in Mixed Native Warm-Season Grass Stands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vitalis W. Temu

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Managing grasslands for forage and ground-nesting bird habitat requires appropriate defoliation strategies. Subsequent early-summer species composition in mixed stands of native warm-season grasses (Indiangrass (IG, Sorghastrum nutans, big bluestem (BB, Andropogon gerardii and little bluestem (LB, Schizachyrium scoparium responding to harvest intervals (treatments, 30, 40, 60, 90 or 120 d and durations (years in production was assessed. Over three years, phased May harvestings were initiated on sets of randomized plots, ≥90 cm apart, in five replications (blocks to produce one-, two- and three-year-old stands. Two weeks after harvest, the frequencies of occurrence of plant species, litter and bare ground, diagonally across each plot (line intercept, were compared. Harvest intervals did not influence proportions of dominant plant species, occurrence of major plant types or litter, but increased that of bare ground patches. Harvest duration increased the occurrence of herbaceous forbs and bare ground patches, decreased that of tall-growing forbs and litter, but without affecting that of perennial grasses, following a year with more September rainfall. Data suggest that one- or two-year full-season forage harvesting may not compromise subsequent breeding habitat for bobwhites and other ground-nesting birds in similar stands. It may take longer than a year’s rest for similar stands to recover from such changes in species composition.

  4. Vegetation Characterization and Litter Production on the Rehabilitated Mined Area of Mussoorie Hills, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Archana JOSHI

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The floristic diversity of four different age series in rehabilitated mined area which represents the degraded ecosystem was examined. Phytosociological analysis revealed that the highest number of plant species (38 nos. including tree, shrubs, herbs and grasses were found in eight years old (Site II rehabilitated site followed by eleven years old (Site I and six years old (Site 3 (33 nos. and least was in four years old Site IV (29 nos.. Maximum total basal area was represented by site I followed by site II, site III and site IV. With reference to annual litter production it was highest in Site I (5286 Kg/ha followed by Site III (1193.2 Kg/ha, Site II (804.0 kg/ha and least in Site IV (262.0 Kg/ha.

  5. Invasive species' leaf traits and dissimilarity from natives shape their impact on nitrogen cycling: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Marissa R; Bernhardt, Emily S; van Bodegom, Peter M; Cornelissen, J Hans C; Kattge, Jens; Laughlin, Daniel C; Niinemets, Ülo; Peñuelas, Josep; Reich, Peter B; Yguel, Benjamin; Wright, Justin P

    2017-01-01

    Many exotic species have little apparent impact on ecosystem processes, whereas others have dramatic consequences for human and ecosystem health. There is growing evidence that invasions foster eutrophication. We need to identify species that are harmful and systems that are vulnerable to anticipate these consequences. Species' traits may provide the necessary insights. We conducted a global meta-analysis to determine whether plant leaf and litter functional traits, and particularly leaf and litter nitrogen (N) content and carbon: nitrogen (C : N) ratio, explain variation in invasive species' impacts on soil N cycling. Dissimilarity in leaf and litter traits among invaded and noninvaded plant communities control the magnitude and direction of invasion impacts on N cycling. Invasions that caused the greatest increases in soil inorganic N and mineralization rates had a much greater litter N content and lower litter C : N in the invaded than the reference community. Trait dissimilarities were better predictors than the trait values of invasive species alone. Quantifying baseline community tissue traits, in addition to those of the invasive species, is critical to understanding the impacts of invasion on soil N cycling. © 2016 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

  6. Marine litter in submarine canyons of the Bay of Biscay

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Beld, Inge M. J.; Guillaumont, Brigitte; Menot, Lénaïck; Bayle, Christophe; Arnaud-Haond, Sophie; Bourillet, Jean-François

    2017-11-01

    Marine litter is a matter of increasing concern worldwide, from shallow seas to the open ocean and from beaches to the deep-seafloor. Indeed, the deep sea may be the ultimate repository of a large proportion of litter in the ocean. We used footage acquired with a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) and a towed camera to investigate the distribution and composition of litter in the submarine canyons of the Bay of Biscay. This bay contains many submarine canyons housing Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems (VMEs) such as scleractinian coral habitats. VMEs are considered to be important for fish and they increase the local biodiversity. The objectives of the study were to investigate and discuss: (i) litter density, (ii) the principal sources of litter, (iii) the influence of environmental factors on the distribution of litter, and (iv) the impact of litter on benthic communities. Litter was found in all 15 canyons and at three sites on the edge of the continental shelf/canyon, in 25 of 29 dives. The Belle-île and Arcachon Canyons contained the largest amounts of litter, up to 12.6 and 9.5 items per 100 images respectively. Plastic items were the most abundant (42%), followed by fishing-related items (16%). The litter had both a maritime and a terrestrial origin. The main sources could be linked to fishing activities, major shipping lanes and river discharges. Litter appeared to accumulate at water depths of 801-1100 m and 1401-1700 m. In the deeper of these two depth ranges, litter accumulated on a geologically structured area, accounting for its high frequency at this depth. A larger number of images taken in areas of coral in the shallower of these two depth ranges may account for the high frequency of litter detection at this depth. A larger number of litter items, including plastic objects in particular, were observed on geological structures and in coral areas than on areas of bare substratum. The distribution of fishing-related items was similar for the various types of

  7. How does litter cover, litter diversity and fauna affect sediment discharge and runoff?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goebes, Philipp; Seitz, Steffen; Kühn, Peter; Scholten, Thomas

    2013-04-01

    Litter cover plays a major role in soil erosion processes. It is known that litter cover reduces erosivity of raindrops, decreases sediment discharge and lowers runoff volume compared to bare ground. However, in the context of biodiversity, the composition of litter cover, its effect on sediment discharge and runoff volume and their influence on soil erosion have not yet been analyzed in detail. Focusing on initial soil erosion (splash), our experimental design is designated to get a better understanding of these mechanisms. The experiments were carried out within the DFG research unit "Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning (BEF)-China" in subtropical China. The "New Integrated Litter Experiment (NILEx)" used as platform combining different subprojects of BEF-China dealing with "decomposition and nutrient cycling", "mechanisms of soil erosion" and "functional effects of herbivores, predators and saproxylics" in one experiment. In NILEx, 96 40cm x 40cm runoff plots on two hill slopes inside a castanea molissima forest plantation have been installed and filled with seven different types of litter cover. 16 one-species plots, 24 two-species plots, 4 four-species plots and 4 bare ground plots have been set up, each replicated once. We prepared 48 Plots with traps (Renner solution) for soil macrofauna (diplopods and collembola), so half of the plots were kept free from fauna while the other half was accessible for fauna. Rainfall was generated artificially by using a rainfall simulator with a continuous and stable intensity of 60 mm/h. Our experiments included two runs of 20 minutes duration each, both conducted at two different time steps (summer 2012 and autumn 2012). Runoff volume and sediment discharge were measured every 5 minutes during one rainfall run. Litter coverage and litter mass were recorded at the beginning (summer 2012) and at the end of the experiment (autumn 2012). Our results show that sediment discharge as well as runoff volume decreases

  8. Litter mercury deposition in the Amazonian rainforest

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fostier, Anne Hélène; Melendez-Perez, José Javier; Richter, Larissa

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this work was to assess the flux of atmospheric mercury transferred to the soil of the Amazonian rainforest by litterfall. Calculations were based on a large survey of published and unpublished data on litterfall and Hg concentrations in litterfall samples from the Amazonian region. Litterfall based on 65 sites located in the Amazon rainforest averaged 8.15 ± 2.25 Mg ha"−"1 y"−"1. Average Hg concentrations were calculated from nine datasets for fresh tree leaves and ten datasets for litter, and a median concentration of 60.5 ng Hg g"−"1 was considered for Hg deposition in litterfall, which averaged 49 ± 14 μg m"−"2 yr"−"1. This value was used to estimate that in the Amazonian rainforest, litterfall would be responsible for the annual removing of 268 ± 77 Mg of Hg, approximately 8% of the total atmospheric Hg deposition to land. The impact of the Amazon deforestation on the Hg biogeochemical cycle is also discussed. - Highlights: • Based on published data we estimated the litterfall in the Amazonian rainforest. • All the published data on Hg concentration in leaves and litter from the region and some unpublished data are presented. • We calculated the litter mercury deposition. • We estimated the contribution of dry, wet and litter Hg deposition in the Amazonian rainforest. • We also discussed the impact of Amazon deforestation on the Hg biogeochemical cycle. - The Amazonian rainforest is responsible for removing at least 268 Mg Hg y"−"1, 8% of the total atmospheric mercury deposition to land.

  9. Trees as templates for tropical litter arthropod diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donoso, David A; Johnston, Mary K; Kaspari, Michael

    2010-09-01

    Increased tree species diversity in the tropics is associated with even greater herbivore diversity, but few tests of tree effects on litter arthropod diversity exist. We studied whether tree species influence patchiness in diversity and abundance of three common soil arthropod taxa (ants, gamasid mites, and oribatid mites) in a Panama forest. The tree specialization hypothesis proposes that tree-driven habitat heterogeneity maintains litter arthropod diversity. We tested whether tree species differed in resource quality and quantity of their leaf litter and whether more heterogeneous litter supports more arthropod species. Alternatively, the abundance-extinction hypothesis states that arthropod diversity increases with arthropod abundance, which in turn tracks resource quantity (e.g., litter depth). We found little support for the hypothesis that tropical trees are templates for litter arthropod diversity. Ten tree species differed in litter depth, chemistry, and structural variability. However, the extent of specialization of invertebrates on particular tree taxa was low and the more heterogeneous litter between trees failed to support higher arthropod diversity. Furthermore, arthropod diversity did not track abundance or litter depth. The lack of association between tree species and litter arthropods suggests that factors other than tree species diversity may better explain the high arthropod diversity in tropical forests.

  10. Laboratory and field evaluation of broiler litter nitrogen mineralization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sistani, K R; Adeli, A; McGowen, S L; Tewolde, H; Brink, G E

    2008-05-01

    Two studies were conducted for this research. First, a laboratory incubation to quantify broiler litter N mineralization with the following treatments: two soil moisture regimes, constant at 60% water fill pore space (WFPS) and fluctuating (60-30% WFPS), three soil types, Brooksville silty clay loam, Ruston sandy loam from Mississippi, and Catlin silt loam from Illinois. Second, a field incubation study to quantify broiler litter N mineralization using similar soils and litter application rates as the laboratory incubation. Broiler litter was applied at an equivalent rate of 350 kg total N ha(-1) for both studies except for control treatments. Subsamples were taken at different timing for both experiments for NO3-N and NH4-N determinations. In the laboratory experiment, soil moisture regimes had no significant impact on litter-derived inorganic N. Total litter-derived inorganic N across all treatments increased from 23 mg kg(-1) at time 0, to 159 mg kg(-1) at 93 d after litter application. Significant differences were observed among the soil types. Net litter-derived inorganic N was greater for Brooksville followed by Ruston and Catlin soils. For both studies and all soils, NH4-N content decreased while NO3-N content increased indicating a rapid nitrification of the mineralized litter N. Litter mineralization in the field study followed the same trend as the laboratory study but resulted in much lower net inorganic N, presumably due to environmental conditions such as precipitation and temperature, which may have resulted in more denitrification and immobilization of mineralized litter N. Litter-derived inorganic N from the field study was greater for Ruston than Brooksville. Due to no impact by soil moisture regimes, additional studies are warranted in order to develop predictive relationships to quantify broiler litter N availability.

  11. Effect of brushwood transposition on the leaf litter arthropod fauna in a cerrado area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Cristina Benetton Vergílio

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The results of ecological restoration techniques can be monitored through biological indicators of soil quality such as the leaf litter arthropod fauna. This study aimed to determine the immediate effect of brushwood transposition transferred from an area of native vegetation to a disturbed area, on the leaf litter arthropod fauna in a degraded cerrado area. The arthropod fauna of four areas was compared: a degraded area with signal grass, two experimental brushwood transposition areas, with and without castor oil plants, and an area of native cerrado. In total, 7,660 individuals belonging to 23 taxa were sampled. Acari and Collembola were the most abundant taxa in all studied areas, followed by Coleoptera, Diptera, Hemiptera, Hymenoptera, and Symphyla. The brushwood transposition area without castor oil plants had the lowest abundance and dominance and the highest diversity of all areas, providing evidence of changes in the soil community. Conversely, the results showed that the presence of castor oil plants hampered early succession, negatively affecting ecological restoration in this area.

  12. Photochemical Transformation and Bacterial Utilization of Dissolved Organic Matter and Disinfection Byproduct Precursors from Foliar Litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chow, A. T.; Wong, P.; O'Geen, A. T.; Dahlgren, R. A.

    2009-12-01

    Foliar litter is an important terrestrial source of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in surface water. DOM is a public health concern since it is a precursor of carcinogenic disinfection byproducts (DBPs) during drinking water treatment. Chemical characterization of in-situ water samples for their impact on water treatment may be misleading because DOM characteristics can be altered from their original composition during downstream transport to water treatment plants. In this study, we collected leachate from four fresh litters and decomposed duffs from four dominant vegetation components of California oak woodlands: blue oak (Quercus douglassi), live oak (Quercus wislizenii), foothill pine (Pinus sabiniana), and annual grasses to evaluate their DOM degradability and the reactivity of altered DOM towards DBP formation. Samples were filtered through a sterilized membrane (0.2 micron) and exposed to natural sunlight and Escherichia coli K-12 independently for 14 days. Generally speaking, leachate from decomposed duff was relatively resistant towards biodegradation compared to that from fresh litter, but the former was more susceptible to photo-transformation. Photo-bleaching caused a 30% decrease in ultra-violet absorbance at 254 nm (UVA) but no significant changes in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentration. This apparent loss of aromatic carbon in DOM, in terms of specific UVA, did not result in a decrease of specific trihalomethane (THM) formation potential, although aromatic carbon is considered as a major reactive site for THM formation. In addition, there were significant increases (p < 0.05) of chloral hydrate after the 14-day exposure, suggesting that the photolytic products could be a precursor of chloral hydrate. In contrast, samples inoculated with E. coli did not show a significant effect on the DOC concentration, UVA or DBP formation, although the colony counts indicated a 2-log cell growth during the 14-day incubation. Results suggest photolysis is a

  13. Introducing litter quality to the ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS: Effects on short- and long-term soil carbon dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portner, Hanspeter; Wolf, Annett; Rühr, Nadine; Bugmann, Harald

    2010-05-01

    Many biogeochemical models have been applied to study the response of the carbon cycle to changes in climate, whereby the process of carbon uptake (photosynthesis) has usually gained more attention than the equally important process of carbon release by respiration. The decomposition of soil organic matter is driven by a combination of factors like soil temperature, soil moisture and litter quality. We have introduced dependence on litter substrate quality to heterotrophic soil respiration in the ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS [Smith et al.(2001)]. We were interested in differences in model projections before and after the inclusion of the dependency both in respect to short- and long-term soil carbon dynamics. The standard implementation of heterotrophic soil respiration in LPJ-GUESS is a simple carbon three-pool model whose decay rates are dependent on soil temperature and soil moisture. We have added dependence on litter quality by coupling LPJ-GUESS to the soil carbon model Yasso07 [Tuomi et al.(2008)]. The Yasso07 model is based on an extensive number of measurements of litter decomposition of forest soils. Apart from the dependence on soil temperature and soil moisture, the Yasso07 model uses carbon soil pools representing different substrate qualities: acid hydrolyzable, water soluble, ethanol soluble, lignin compounds and humus. Additionally Yasso07 differentiates between woody and non-woody litter. In contrary to the reference implementation of LPJ-GUESS, in the new model implementation, the litter now is divided according to its specific quality and added to the corresponding soil carbon pool. The litter quality thereby differs between litter source (leaves, roots, stems) and plant functional type (broadleaved, needleleaved, grass). The two contrasting model implementations were compared and validated at one specific CarboEuropeIP site (Lägern, Switzerland) and on a broader scale all over Switzerland. Our focus lay on the soil respiration for the years 2006

  14. Analysis of litter size and average litter weight in pigs using a recursive model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Varona, Luis; Sorensen, Daniel; Thompson, Robin

    2007-01-01

    An analysis of litter size and average piglet weight at birth in Landrace and Yorkshire using a standard two-trait mixed model (SMM) and a recursive mixed model (RMM) is presented. The RMM establishes a one-way link from litter size to average piglet weight. It is shown that there is a one......-to-one correspondence between the parameters of SMM and RMM and that they generate equivalent likelihoods. As parameterized in this work, the RMM tests for the presence of a recursive relationship between additive genetic values, permanent environmental effects, and specific environmental effects of litter size......, on average piglet weight. The equivalent standard mixed model tests whether or not the covariance matrices of the random effects have a diagonal structure. In Landrace, posterior predictive model checking supports a model without any form of recursion or, alternatively, a SMM with diagonal covariance...

  15. Odour emissions from poultry litter - A review litter properties, odour formation and odorant emissions from porous materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlop, Mark W; Blackall, Patrick J; Stuetz, Richard M

    2016-07-15

    Odour emissions from meat chicken sheds can at times cause odour impacts on surrounding communities. Litter is seen as the primary source of this odour. Formation and emission of odour from meat chicken litter during the grow-out period are influenced by various factors such as litter conditions, the environment, microbial activity, properties of the odorous gases and management practices. Odour emissions vary spatially and temporally. This variability has made it challenging to understand how specific litter conditions contribute to odour emissions from the litter and production sheds. Existing knowledge on odorants, odour formation mechanisms and emission processes that contribute to odour emissions from litter are reviewed. Litter moisture content and water thermodynamics (i.e. water activity, Aw) are also examined as factors that contribute to microbial odour formation, physical litter conditions and the exchange of individual odorant gases at the air-water interface. Substantial opportunities exist for future research on litter conditions and litter formation mechanisms and how these contribute to odour emissions. Closing this knowledge gap will improve management strategies that intercept and interfere with odour formation and emission processes leading to an overall reduction in the potential to cause community impacts. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Isotopic Discrimination During Leaf Litter Decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngao, J.; Rubino, M.

    2006-12-01

    Methods involving stable isotopes have been successfully applied since decades in various research fields. Tracing 13C natural abundance in ecosystem compartments greatly enhanced the understanding of the C fluxes in the plant-soil-atmosphere C exchanges when compartments present different C isotopic signatures (i.e. atmospheric CO2 vs photosynthetic leaves, C3 vs C4; etc.). However, the assumption that no isotopic discrimination occurs during respiration is commonly made in numbers of C isotope-based ecological studies. Furthermore, verifications of such assumption are sparse and not enough reliable. The aim of our study is to assess the potential isotopic discrimination that may occur during litter decomposition. Leaf litter from an Arbutus unedo (L.) stand (Tolfa, Italy) was incubated in 1L jars, under constant laboratory conditions (i.e. 25 ° C and 135% WC). During the entire incubation period, gravimetric mass loss, litter respiration rates and the isotopic composition of respired CO2 are monitored at regular intervals. Data from 7 months of incubation will be presented and discussed. After two months, the litter mass loss averaged 16% of initial dry mass. During the same time-period, the respiration rate decreased significantly by 58% of the initial respiration rate. Isotopic compositions of respired CO2 ranged between -27.95‰ and - 25.69‰. Mean values did not differ significantly among the sampling days, in spite of an apparent enrichment in 13C of respired CO2 with time. The significance of these isotopic enrichment will be determined at a longer time scale. They may reveal both/either a direct microbial discrimination during respiration processes and/or a use of different litter compounds as C source along time. Further chemical and compound-specific isotopic analysis of dry matter will be performed in order to clarify these hypotheses. This work is part of the "ALICE" project, funded by the European Union's Marie Curie Fellowship Actions that aims to

  17. Checklist of Serengeti Ecosystem Grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ficinski, Paweł; Vorontsova, Maria

    2016-01-01

    Abstract We present the first taxonomic checklist of the Poaceae species of the Serengeti, Tanzania. A review of the literature and herbarium specimens recorded 200 species of grasses, in line with similar studies in other parts of East Africa. The checklist is supported by a total of 939 herbarium collections. Full georeferenced collection data is made available alongside a summary checklist in pdf format. More than a quarter of the species are known from a single collection highlighting the need for further research, especially concerning the rare species and their distribution. PMID:27226761

  18. Checklist of Serengeti Ecosystem Grasses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Emma Victoria; Elia Ntandu, John; Ficinski, Paweł; Vorontsova, Maria

    2016-01-01

    We present the first taxonomic checklist of the Poaceae species of the Serengeti, Tanzania. A review of the literature and herbarium specimens recorded 200 species of grasses, in line with similar studies in other parts of East Africa. The checklist is supported by a total of 939 herbarium collections. Full georeferenced collection data is made available alongside a summary checklist in pdf format. More than a quarter of the species are known from a single collection highlighting the need for further research, especially concerning the rare species and their distribution.

  19. Nonculturability Might Underestimate the Occurrence of Campylobacter in Broiler Litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassem, Issmat I; Helmy, Yosra A; Kathayat, Dipak; Candelero-Rueda, Rosario A; Kumar, Anand; Deblais, Loic; Huang, Huang-Chi; Sahin, Orhan; Zhang, Qijing; Rajashekara, Gireesh

    2017-08-01

    We investigated the contribution of litter to the occurrence of Campylobacter on three broiler farms, which were known to have low (LO) and high (HI-A and HI-B) Campylobacter prevalence. For this purpose, we collected litter samples (n = 288) during and after two rearing cycles from each farm. We evaluated the occurrence of Campylobacter (using selective enrichment and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction [q-PCR] analysis) in the litter samples as well as the litter's pH and moisture content. Ceca from each flock (n = 144) were harvested at slaughter age and used to quantify Campylobacter colony-forming units (CFUs). Campylobacter was only retrieved from 7 litter samples that were collected from HI-A and HI-B during the growing period, but no Campylobacter was isolated from LO farms. The q-PCR analysis detected Campylobacter in pooled litter samples from all three farms. However, in litter collected during the same rotation, Campylobacter levels were significantly higher (p litter samples in comparison to those in LO. Cecal samples from HI-A and HI-B yielded relatively high numbers of Campylobacter CFUs, which were undetectable in LO samples. Litter's pH and moisture did not affect the overall occurrence of Campylobacter in litter and ceca on any of the farms. Our data suggest that Campylobacter was generally more abundant in litter that was collected from farms with highly colonized flocks. Therefore, better approaches for assessing the occurrence of Campylobacter in litter might be warranted in order to reduce the dissemination of these pathogens on and off poultry farms.

  20. Marine litter in the Nordic Seas: Distribution composition and abundance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buhl-Mortensen, Lene; Buhl-Mortensen, Pål

    2017-12-15

    Litter has been found in all marine environments and is accumulating in seabirds and mammals in the Nordic Seas. These ecosystems are under pressure from climatic change and fisheries while the human population is small. The marine landscapes in the area range from shallow fishing banks to deep-sea canyons. We present density, distribution and composition of litter from the first large-scale mapping of sea bed litter in arctic and subarctic waters. Litter was registered from 1778 video transects, of which 27% contained litter. The background density of litter in the Barents Sea and Norwegian Sea is 202 and 279 items/km 2 respectively, and highest densities were found close to coast and in canyons. Most of the litter originated from the fishing industry and plastic was the second most common litter. Background levels were comparable to European records and areas with most littering had higher densities than in Europe. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  1. Competence of Litter Ants for Rapid Biodiversity Assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. H. Saumya E. Silva

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Rapid Biodiversity Assessment approaches associated with focusing taxa have overcome many of the problems related to large scale surveys. This study examined the suitability of litter ants as a focusing taxon by checking whether diversity and species assemblages of litter ants reflect the overall picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter in two vegetation types: secondary forest and pine plantation in Upper Hanthana forest reserve, Sri Lanka. In each vegetation type, arthropods were sampled using three sampling methods (Winkler extraction, hand collection, and pitfall traps along three 100 m line transects. From the two sites, 1887 litter ants (34 species and 3488 litter arthropods (52 species were collected. Species assemblages composition of both ants and other arthropods differed significantly between the two sites (ANOSIM, p=0.001 with both groups generating distinct clusters for the two sites (SIMPROF, p=0.001. But there was no significant correlation (p>0.05 between abundance and richness of litter ants and those of other arthropods in both vegetation types. The overall finding suggests that the litter ants do not reflect the holistic picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter, but the quality of the habitat for the survival of all litter arthropods.

  2. Enhancing GRASS data communication with videographic technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sullivan, R.G. [Argonne National Lab., IL (United States); Gerdes, D.; Youngs, D. [Army Construction Engineering Research Lab., Champaign, IL (United States)

    1992-07-01

    Research at Argonne National Laboratory and the US Army Construction Engineering Research Laboratory has shown that computer videographic technology can be used to assist visualization and communication of GIS-generated geographic information. Videographic tools can be used to make results of GRASS analyses clear to decision-makers and to public interest groups, as well as to help GRASS users visualize geographic data more easily. Useful videographic visualization tools include graphic overlay of GRASS layers onto panchromatic images, allowing landscape features to be associated with GIS classifications; draping of GIS layers onto terrain models to create shaded relief maps; and incorporation of photographic imagery into GIS graphics. Useful videographic communications capabilities include convenient, direct interface to video formats, allowing incorporation of live video into GRASS graphics and output of GRASS graphics to video; convenient output of high-quality slides and prints; and enhanced labeling and editing of GRASS images. Conversion of GRASS imagery to standard videographic file formats also facilitates incorporation of GRASS images into other software programs, such as database and work-processing packages.

  3. Enhancing GRASS data communication with videographic technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sullivan, R.G. (Argonne National Lab., IL (United States)); Gerdes, D.; Youngs, D. (Army Construction Engineering Research Lab., Champaign, IL (United States))

    1992-01-01

    Research at Argonne National Laboratory and the US Army Construction Engineering Research Laboratory has shown that computer videographic technology can be used to assist visualization and communication of GIS-generated geographic information. Videographic tools can be used to make results of GRASS analyses clear to decision-makers and to public interest groups, as well as to help GRASS users visualize geographic data more easily. Useful videographic visualization tools include graphic overlay of GRASS layers onto panchromatic images, allowing landscape features to be associated with GIS classifications; draping of GIS layers onto terrain models to create shaded relief maps; and incorporation of photographic imagery into GIS graphics. Useful videographic communications capabilities include convenient, direct interface to video formats, allowing incorporation of live video into GRASS graphics and output of GRASS graphics to video; convenient output of high-quality slides and prints; and enhanced labeling and editing of GRASS images. Conversion of GRASS imagery to standard videographic file formats also facilitates incorporation of GRASS images into other software programs, such as database and work-processing packages.

  4. Thermogravimetric analysis of forest understory grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas Elder; John S. Kush; Sharon M. Hermann

    2011-01-01

    Forest understory grasses are of significance in the initiation, establishment and maintenance of fire, whether used as a management tool or when occurring as wildfire. The fundamental thermal properties of such grasses are critical to their behavior in fire situations and have been investigated in the current work by the application of thermogravimetric analysis (TGA...

  5. Changes in plant functional groups, litter quality, and soil carbon and nitrogen mineralization with sheep grazing in an Inner Mongolian Grassland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barger, N.N.; Ojima, D.S.; Belnap, J.; Shiping, W.; Yanfen, W.; Chen, Z.

    2004-01-01

    This study reports on changes in plant functional group composition, litter quality, and soil C and N mineralization dynamics from a 9-year sheep grazing study in Inner Mongolia. Addressed are these questions: 1) How does increasing grazing intensity affect plant community composition? 2) How does increasing grazing intensity alter soil C and N mineralization dynamics? 3) Do changes in soil C and N mineralization dynamics relate to changes in plant community composition via inputs of the quality or quantity of litter? Grazing plots were set up near the Inner Mongolia Grassland Ecosystem Research Station (IMGERS) with 5 grazing intensities: 1.3, 2.7, 4.0, 5.3, and 6.7 sheep ha -1??yr-1. Plant cover was lower with increasing grazing intensity, which was primarily due to a dramatic decline in grasses, Carex duriuscula, and Artemisia frigida. Changes in litter mass and percentage organic C resulted in lower total C in the litter layer at 4.0 and 5.3 sheep ha-1??yr-1 compared with 2.7 sheep ha -1??yr-1. Total litter N was lower at 5.3 sheep ha-1??yr-1 compared with 2.7 sheep ha -1??yr-1. Litter C:N ratios, an index of litter quality, were significantly lower at 4.0 sheep ha-1??yr -1 relative to 1.3 and 5.3 sheep ha-1??yr -1. Cumulative C mineralized after 16 days decreased with increasing grazing intensity. In contrast, net N mineralization (NH4+ + NO3-) after a 12-day incubation increased with increasing grazing intensity. Changes in C and N mineralization resulted in a narrowing of CO2-C:net Nminratios with increasing grazing intensity. Grazing explained 31% of the variability in the ratio of CO 2-C:net Nmin. The ratio of CO2-C:net N min was positively correlated with litter mass. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between litter mass and A. frigida cover. Results suggest that as grazing intensity increases, microbes become more C limited resulting in decreased microbial growth and demand for N.

  6. SQ grass sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablet for disease-modifying treatment of grass pollen allergic rhinoconjunctivitis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dahl, Ronald; Roberts, Graham; de Blic, Jacques

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Allergy immunotherapy is a treatment option for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (ARC). It is unique compared with pharmacotherapy in that it modifies the immunologic pathways that elicit an allergic response. The SQ Timothy grass sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) tablet is approved in North...... America and throughout Europe for the treatment of adults and children (≥5 years old) with grass pollen-induced ARC. OBJECTIVE: The clinical evidence for the use of SQ grass SLIT-tablet as a disease-modifying treatment for grass pollen ARC is discussed in this review. METHODS: The review included...... the suitability of SQ grass SLIT-tablet for patients with clinically relevant symptoms to multiple Pooideae grass species, single-season efficacy, safety, adherence, coseasonal initiation, and cost-effectiveness. The data from the long-term SQ grass SLIT-tablet clinical trial that evaluated a clinical effect 2...

  7. Tropical herbivorous phasmids, but not litter snails, alter decomposition rates by modifying litter bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chelse M. Prather; Gary E. Belovsky; Sharon A. Cantrell; Grizelle González

    2018-01-01

    Consumers can alter decomposition rates through both feces and selective feeding in many ecosystems, but these combined effects have seldom been examined in tropical ecosystems. Members of the detrital food web (litter-feeders or microbivores) should presumably have greater effects on decomposition than herbivores, members of the green food web. Using litterbag...

  8. Large-scale downy brome treatments alter plant-soil relationships and promote perennial grasses in salt desert shrublands

    Science.gov (United States)

    The interrelationship between invasive annual grass abundance and soil resource availability varies spatially and temporally within ecosystems and may be altered by land treatments. We evaluated these relationships in two salt desert landscapes where the local abundance of Bromus tectorum L. (downy...

  9. Fenbendazole treatment and litter size in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Nancy A; Bieszczak, Jeremiah R; Verhulst, Steven; Disney, Kimberly E; Montgomery, Kyle E; Toth, Linda A

    2006-11-01

    Fenbendazole is commonly used in laboratory animal medicine as an anthelmintic for elimination of pinworms. It is generally regarded as a safe drug with minimal side effects. In our facility, 2 breeding colonies of rats were treated with fenbendazole to eliminate pinworms. Analysis of the breeding records revealed that feeding Sprague-Dawley rats a diet containing fenbendazole on a continuous basis for 7 consecutive weeks was associated with a significant reduction in litter size. Although the mechanism underlying this effect is unknown, the finding prompts caution when using fenbendazole to treat valuable breeding colonies or strains that are poor breeders.

  10. Fate of mercury in tree litter during decomposition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. K. Pokharel

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available We performed a controlled laboratory litter incubation study to assess changes in dry mass, carbon (C mass and concentration, mercury (Hg mass and concentration, and stoichiometric relations between elements during decomposition. Twenty-five surface litter samples each, collected from four forest stands, were placed in incubation jars open to the atmosphere, and were harvested sequentially at 0, 3, 6, 12, and 18 months. Using a mass balance approach, we observed significant mass losses of Hg during decomposition (5 to 23 % of initial mass after 18 months, which we attribute to gaseous losses of Hg to the atmosphere through a gas-permeable filter covering incubation jars. Percentage mass losses of Hg generally were less than observed dry mass and C mass losses (48 to 63 % Hg loss per unit dry mass loss, although one litter type showed similar losses. A field control study using the same litter types exposed at the original collection locations for one year showed that field litter samples were enriched in Hg concentrations by 8 to 64 % compared to samples incubated for the same time period in the laboratory, indicating strong additional sorption of Hg in the field likely from atmospheric deposition. Solubility of Hg, assessed by exposure of litter to water upon harvest, was very low (<0.22 ng Hg g−1 dry mass and decreased with increasing stage of decomposition for all litter types. Our results indicate potentially large gaseous emissions, or re-emissions, of Hg originally associated with plant litter upon decomposition. Results also suggest that Hg accumulation in litter and surface layers in the field is driven mainly by additional sorption of Hg, with minor contributions from "internal" accumulation due to preferential loss of C over Hg. Litter types showed highly species-specific differences in Hg levels during decomposition suggesting that emissions, retention, and sorption of Hg are dependent on litter type.

  11. Radiocesium leaching from contaminated litter in forest streams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sakai, Masaru; Gomi, Takashi; Naito, Risa S.; Negishi, Junjiro N.; Sasaki, Michiko; Toda, Hiroto; Nunokawa, Masanori; Murase, Kaori

    2015-01-01

    In Japanese forests suffering from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident, litter fall provides a large amount of radiocesium from forests to streams. Submerged litter is processed to become a vital food resource for various stream organisms through initial leaching and subsequent decomposition. Although leaching from litter can detach radiocesium similarly to potassium, radiocesium leaching and its migration are poorly understood. We examined both radiocesium and potassium leaching to the water column and radiocesium allocation to minerals (glass beads, silica sand, and vermiculite) in the laboratory using soaked litter with and without minerals on a water column. The mineral types did not affect radiocesium leaching from litter, but soaking in water for 1, 7, and 30 days decreased the radiocesium concentration in litter by ×0.71, ×0.66, and ×0.56, respectively. Meanwhile, the 1-, 7-, and 30-day experiments decreased potassium concentration in litter by ×0.17, ×0.11, and ×0.09, respectively. Leached radiocesium remained in a dissolved form when there was no mineral phases present in the water, whereas there was sorption onto the minerals when they were present. In particular, vermiculite adsorbed radiocesium by two to three orders of magnitude more effectively than the other minerals. Because radiocesium forms (such as that dissolved or adsorbed to organic matter or minerals) can further mobilize to ecosystems, our findings will increase our understanding regarding the dynamics of radiocesium in stream ecosystems. - Highlights: • Radiocesium in contaminated litter was leached when soaked in water. • Radiocesium in litter leached slowly compared to potassium. • Minerals adsorbed dissolved radiocesium that was leached from litter. • Vermiculite effectively adsorbed radiocesium leached from litter

  12. Does plant uptake or low soil mineral-N production limit mineral-N losses to surface waters and groundwater from soils under grass in summer?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bhatti, Ambreen; McClean, Colin J.; Cresser, Malcolm S.

    2013-01-01

    Summer minima and autumn/winter maxima in nitrate concentrations in rivers are reputedly due to high plant uptake of nitrate from soils in summer. A novel alternative hypothesis is tested here for soils under grass. By summer, residual readily mineralizable plant litter from the previous autumn/winter is negligible and fresh litter input low. Consequently little mineral-N is produced in the soil. Water-soluble and KCl-extractable mineral N in fresh soils and soils incubated outdoors for 7 days have been monitored over 12 months for soil transects at two permanent grassland sites near York, UK, using 6 replicates throughout. Vegetation-free soil is shown to produce very limited mineral-N in summer, despite the warm, moist conditions. Litter accumulates in autumn/winter and initially its high C:N ratio favours N accumulation in the soil. It is also shown that mineral-N generated monthly in situ in soil substantially exceeds the monthly mineral-N inputs via wet deposition at the sites. -- Highlights: •Soil mineral-N has been measured over a year at two grassland sites in the UK. •Rates of mineral-N production have also been measured in vegetation-free soils. •In summer, though soils were warm and moist, rate of mineral-N production was low. •The effect is attributed to low litter inputs in summer when grass is growing well. •Low mineral-N production in summer must be limiting N losses to fresh waters. -- Low mineral-N production in soils under grass limits summer N losses to surface- and ground-waters

  13. Influence of Covering Reused Broiler Litter with Plastic Canvas on Litter Characteristics and Bacteriology and the Subsequent Immunity and Microbiology of Broilers

    OpenAIRE

    Mesa, D; Lourenço, M; Souza, A; Bueno, A; Pereira, A; Sfeir, M; Santin, E

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT In broiler production, the litter is reused for consecutives flocks, and it is treated during down time between flocks to reduce its microbial load. Although covering the litter with a plastic canvas is a common litter treatment in the field, there is little scientific information available on its efficacy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of covering broiler litter with a plastic canvas for eight days on litter microbiological, physical, and chemical parameters, and...

  14. Effects of fire frequency on litter decomposition as mediated by changes to litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cari D Ficken

    Full Text Available Litter quality and soil environmental conditions are well-studied drivers influencing decomposition rates, but the role played by disturbance legacy, such as fire history, in mediating these drivers is not well understood. Fire history may impact decomposition directly, through changes in soil conditions that impact microbial function, or indirectly, through shifts in plant community composition and litter chemistry. Here, we compared early-stage decomposition rates across longleaf pine forest blocks managed with varying fire frequencies (annual burns, triennial burns, fire-suppression. Using a reciprocal transplant design, we examined how litter chemistry and soil characteristics independently and jointly influenced litter decomposition. We found that both litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions influenced decomposition rates, but only the former was affected by historical fire frequency. Litter from annually burned sites had higher nitrogen content than litter from triennially burned and fire suppression sites, but this was correlated with only a modest increase in decomposition rates. Soil environmental conditions had a larger impact on decomposition than litter chemistry. Across the landscape, decomposition differed more along soil moisture gradients than across fire management regimes. These findings suggest that fire frequency has a limited effect on litter decomposition in this ecosystem, and encourage extending current decomposition frameworks into disturbed systems. However, litter from different species lost different masses due to fire, suggesting that fire may impact decomposition through the preferential combustion of some litter types. Overall, our findings also emphasize the important role of spatial variability in soil environmental conditions, which may be tied to fire frequency across large spatial scales, in driving decomposition rates in this system.

  15. Effects of fire frequency on litter decomposition as mediated by changes to litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ficken, Cari D; Wright, Justin P

    2017-01-01

    Litter quality and soil environmental conditions are well-studied drivers influencing decomposition rates, but the role played by disturbance legacy, such as fire history, in mediating these drivers is not well understood. Fire history may impact decomposition directly, through changes in soil conditions that impact microbial function, or indirectly, through shifts in plant community composition and litter chemistry. Here, we compared early-stage decomposition rates across longleaf pine forest blocks managed with varying fire frequencies (annual burns, triennial burns, fire-suppression). Using a reciprocal transplant design, we examined how litter chemistry and soil characteristics independently and jointly influenced litter decomposition. We found that both litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions influenced decomposition rates, but only the former was affected by historical fire frequency. Litter from annually burned sites had higher nitrogen content than litter from triennially burned and fire suppression sites, but this was correlated with only a modest increase in decomposition rates. Soil environmental conditions had a larger impact on decomposition than litter chemistry. Across the landscape, decomposition differed more along soil moisture gradients than across fire management regimes. These findings suggest that fire frequency has a limited effect on litter decomposition in this ecosystem, and encourage extending current decomposition frameworks into disturbed systems. However, litter from different species lost different masses due to fire, suggesting that fire may impact decomposition through the preferential combustion of some litter types. Overall, our findings also emphasize the important role of spatial variability in soil environmental conditions, which may be tied to fire frequency across large spatial scales, in driving decomposition rates in this system.

  16. Mangrove litter production and organic carbon pools in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mngazana Estuary is an important source of mangrove litter and POC for the adjacent marine environment, possibly sustaining nearshore food webs. Keywords: Dissolved organic carbon, harvesting, litter production, mangroves, particulate organic carbon, Rhizophora mucronata, South Africa African Journal of Aquatic ...

  17. Effects of adding aluminum sulfate to different litters on selected ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The objective of this study was to determine the effects of adding aluminum sulfate to different litters on blood plasma concentrations of some principal microelements and some vitamins in broilers. In this experiment, 645 day old Ross 308 broiler chicks were randomly divided into 4 litter group (straw, sawdust, alum ...

  18. Are litter decomposition and fire linked through plant species traits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Grootemaat, Saskia; Verheijen, Lieneke M; Cornwell, William K; van Bodegom, Peter M; van der Wal, René; Aerts, Rien

    2017-11-01

    Contents 653 I. 654 II. 657 III. 659 IV. 661 V. 662 VI. 663 VII. 665 665 References 665 SUMMARY: Biological decomposition and wildfire are connected carbon release pathways for dead plant material: slower litter decomposition leads to fuel accumulation. Are decomposition and surface fires also connected through plant community composition, via the species' traits? Our central concept involves two axes of trait variation related to decomposition and fire. The 'plant economics spectrum' (PES) links biochemistry traits to the litter decomposability of different fine organs. The 'size and shape spectrum' (SSS) includes litter particle size and shape and their consequent effect on fuel bed structure, ventilation and flammability. Our literature synthesis revealed that PES-driven decomposability is largely decoupled from predominantly SSS-driven surface litter flammability across species; this finding needs empirical testing in various environmental settings. Under certain conditions, carbon release will be dominated by decomposition, while under other conditions litter fuel will accumulate and fire may dominate carbon release. Ecosystem-level feedbacks between decomposition and fire, for example via litter amounts, litter decomposition stage, community-level biotic interactions and altered environment, will influence the trait-driven effects on decomposition and fire. Yet, our conceptual framework, explicitly comparing the effects of two plant trait spectra on litter decomposition vs fire, provides a promising new research direction for better understanding and predicting Earth surface carbon dynamics. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  19. Analysis of litter mesofauna of Poltava region forest ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. S. Komarov

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available On the basis of research of litter mesofauna of 48 forest biogeocenoses the regularities of invertebrate communities formation on the species and families levels are determined. The degree of similarity of test plots are analysed by taxonomic structure of the communities. The factors of the litter invertebrate communities formation in forest ecosystems of the Poltava region are revealed.

  20. Use of natural zeolite-supplemented litter increased broiler production

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The aim of this study was to ascertain the influence of natural zeolite, consisting mainly of clinoptilolite and mordenite, as a component of the litter material in broiler houses on the performance of the broilers and on some litter characteristics. Live weight gain, feed consumption, feed efficiency, viability and leg and body ...

  1. THE FATE OF TANNINS IN CORSICAN PINE LITTER

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nierop, K.G.J.; Verstraten, J.M.

    2006-01-01

    Tannins are ubiquitous in higher plants and therefore also in litter and soils where they affect many biogeochemical processes. Despite this well recognized role, the fate of tannins in litter and mineral soils is hardly known as often only trace amounts, if any, of tannins are measured. In this

  2. Marine litter monitoring by northern fulmars: progress report 2002

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Franeker, van J.A.; Meijboom, A.

    2003-01-01

    An earlier pilot study on litter contents in stomachs of Fulmars indicated that this seabird can be used as a suitable indicator for levels of marine litter pollution on the North Sea off the Dutch coast. This progress report updates the existing dataset with data on Fulmar stomach contents in the

  3. Marine Litter, Eutrophication and Noise Assessment Tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palazov, Atanas; Velcheva, Maya; Milkova, Tanya; Slabakova, Violeta; Marinova, Veselka

    2017-04-01

    MARLEN - Marine Litter, Eutrophication and Noise Assessment Tools is a project under the Programme BG02.03: Increased capacity for assessing and predicting environmental status in marine and inland waters, managed by Bulgarian Ministry of environment and waters and co-financed by the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area (EEA FM) 2009 - 2014. Project Beneficiary is the Institute of oceanology - Bulgarian Academy of Sciences with two partners: Burgas municipality and Bulgarian Black Sea Basin Directorate. Initial assessment of ecological state of Bulgarian marine waters showed lack of data for some descriptors of MSFD. The main goal of MARLEN is to build up tools for assessment of marine environment by implementing new technologies and best practices for addressing three main areas of interest with lack of marine data in particular: a) Marine litter detection and classification in coastal areas; b) Regular near real time surface water eutrophication monitoring on large aquatory; c) Underwater noise monitoring. Developed tools are an important source of real time, near real time and delay mode marine data for Bulgarian Black Sea waters. The partnership within the project increased capacity for environmental assessments and training of personnel and enhances collaboration between scientific institutes, regional and local authorities. Project results supported implementation of MSFD in Bulgarian marine waters for the benefit of coastal population, marine industry, tourism, marine research and marine spatial planning.

  4. Grass leaves as potential hominin dietary resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paine, Oliver C C; Koppa, Abigale; Henry, Amanda G; Leichliter, Jennifer N; Codron, Daryl; Codron, Jacqueline; Lambert, Joanna E; Sponheimer, Matt

    2018-04-01

    Discussions about early hominin diets have generally excluded grass leaves as a staple food resource, despite their ubiquity in most early hominin habitats. In particular, stable carbon isotope studies have shown a prevalent C 4 component in the diets of most taxa, and grass leaves are the single most abundant C 4 resource in African savannas. Grass leaves are typically portrayed as having little nutritional value (e.g., low in protein and high in fiber) for hominins lacking specialized digestive systems. It has also been argued that they present mechanical challenges (i.e., high toughness) for hominins with bunodont dentition. Here, we compare the nutritional and mechanical properties of grass leaves with the plants growing alongside them in African savanna habitats. We also compare grass leaves to the leaves consumed by other hominoids and demonstrate that many, though by no means all, compare favorably with the nutritional and mechanical properties of known primate foods. Our data reveal that grass leaves exhibit tremendous variation and suggest that future reconstructions of hominin dietary ecology take a more nuanced approach when considering grass leaves as a potential hominin dietary resource. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Post-fire Downy Brome (Bromus tectorum) invasion at high elevation in Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    The invasive annual grass downy brome is the most ubiquitous weed in sagebrush systems of western North America. The center of invasion has largely been the Great Basin region, but there is an increasing abundance and distribution in the Rocky Mountain States. We evaluated post-fire vegetation chang...

  6. Resistance to invasion and resilience to fire in desert shrublands of North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthew L. Brooks; Jeanne C. Chambers

    2011-01-01

    Settlement by Anglo-Americans in the desert shrublands of North America resulted in the introduction and subsequent invasion of multiple nonnative grass species. These invasions have altered presettlement fire regimes, resulted in conversion of native perennial shrublands to nonnative annual grasslands, and placed many native desert species at risk. Effective...

  7. Evaluating hybridization as a potential facilitator of successful cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) invasion in Florida, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rima Lucardi; L.E. Wallace; G.N. Ervin

    2014-01-01

    Interspecific hybridization is cited as one potential mechanism for increased invasiveness, particularly among some grass species. In the southeastern United States, the successful invasion of cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) has sometimes been attributed to hybridization with the previously naturalized Imperata brasiliensis. This...

  8. Phenology of exotic invasive weeds associated with downy brome

    Science.gov (United States)

    The exotic and highly invasive annual grass downy brome (Bromus tectorum) has invaded millions of hectares of rangelands throughout the Intermountain West. Downy brome increases the chance, rate, season and spread of wildfires, resulting in the destruction of native plant communities and the wildli...

  9. The importance of education in managing invasive plant species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Invasive plant species can establish in diverse environments and with the increase in human mobility, they are no longer restricted to isolated pockets in remote parts of the world. Cheat grass (Bromus tectorum L.) in rangelands, purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria L.) in wet lands and Canada this...

  10. Exploring the invasion of rangelands by Acacia mearnsii (black ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Reducing A. mearnsii canopy could promote grass production while encouraging carbon sequestration. Given the high AGB and clearing costs, it may be prudent to adopt the 'novel ecosystems' approach in managing infested landscapes. Keywords: grassland, invasive plants, landscape ecology, rangeland condition ...

  11. Dietary flexibility aids Asian earthworm invasion in North American forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weixin; Hendrix, Paul F; Snyder, Bruce A; Molina, Marirosa; Li, Jianxiong; Rao, Xingquan; Siemann, Evan; Fu, Shenglei

    2010-07-01

    On a local scale, invasiveness of introduced species and invasibility of habitats together determine invasion success. A key issue in invasion ecology has been how to quantify the contribution of species invasiveness and habitat invasibility separately. Conventional approaches, such as comparing the differences in traits and/or impacts of species between native and/or invaded ranges, do not determine the extent to which the performance of invaders is due to either the effects of species traits or habitat characteristics. Here we explore the interaction between two of the most widespread earthworm invaders in the world (Asian Amynthas agrestis and European Lumbricus rubellus) and study the effects of species invasiveness and habitat invasibility separately through an alternative approach of "third habitat" in Tennessee, USA. We propose that feeding behaviors of earthworms will be critical to invasion success because trophic ecology of invasive animals plays a key role in the invasion process. We found that (1) the biomass and isotopic abundances (delta13C and delta15N) of A. agrestis were not impacted by either direct effects of L. rubellus competition or indirect effects of L. rubellus-preconditioned habitat; (2) A. agrestis disrupted the relationship between L. rubellus and soil microorganisms and consequently hindered litter consumption by L. rubellus; and (3) compared to L. rubellus, A. agrestis shifted its diet more readily to consume more litter, more soil gram-positive (G+) bacteria (which may be important for litter digestion), and more non-microbial soil fauna when soil microorganisms were depleted. In conclusion, A. agrestis showed strong invasiveness through its dietary flexibility through diet shifting and superior feeding behavior and its indirectly negative effect of habitat invasibility on L. rubellus via changes in the soil microorganism community. In such context, our results expand on the resource fluctuation hypothesis and support the superior

  12. The influence of selected litter and herd factors on treatments for lameness in suckling piglets from 35 Danish herds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, J.

    1996-01-01

    was: high-risk litters are (1) large litters, (2) litters with previous diseases or deaths, (3) litters where the nursing sow had been treated, or (4) litters from high-parity sows. Litters from large conventional herds or from herds with a high stocking density were expected to have a high risk...

  13. Grass Biomethane for Agriculture and Energy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Korres, N.E.; Thamsiriroj, T.; Smith, B.

    2011-01-01

    have advanced the role of grassland as a renewable source of energy in grass biomethane production with various environmental and socio-economic benefits. It is underlined that the essential question whether the gaseous biofuel meets the EU sustainability criteria of 60% greenhouse gas emission savings...... by 2020 can be met since savings up to 89.4% under various scenarios can be achieved. Grass biomethane production compared to other liquid biofuels either when these are produced by indigenous of imported feedstocks is very promising. Grass biomethane, given the mature and well known technology...

  14. Fate of mercury in tree litter during decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pokharel, A. K.; Obrist, D.

    2011-09-01

    We performed a controlled laboratory litter incubation study to assess changes in dry mass, carbon (C) mass and concentration, mercury (Hg) mass and concentration, and stoichiometric relations between elements during decomposition. Twenty-five surface litter samples each, collected from four forest stands, were placed in incubation jars open to the atmosphere, and were harvested sequentially at 0, 3, 6, 12, and 18 months. Using a mass balance approach, we observed significant mass losses of Hg during decomposition (5 to 23 % of initial mass after 18 months), which we attribute to gaseous losses of Hg to the atmosphere through a gas-permeable filter covering incubation jars. Percentage mass losses of Hg generally were less than observed dry mass and C mass losses (48 to 63 % Hg loss per unit dry mass loss), although one litter type showed similar losses. A field control study using the same litter types exposed at the original collection locations for one year showed that field litter samples were enriched in Hg concentrations by 8 to 64 % compared to samples incubated for the same time period in the laboratory, indicating strong additional sorption of Hg in the field likely from atmospheric deposition. Solubility of Hg, assessed by exposure of litter to water upon harvest, was very low (associated with plant litter upon decomposition. Results also suggest that Hg accumulation in litter and surface layers in the field is driven mainly by additional sorption of Hg, with minor contributions from "internal" accumulation due to preferential loss of C over Hg. Litter types showed highly species-specific differences in Hg levels during decomposition suggesting that emissions, retention, and sorption of Hg are dependent on litter type.

  15. Microbial mineralization of organic nitrogen forms in poultry litters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothrock, Michael J; Cook, Kimberly L; Warren, Jason G; Eiteman, Mark A; Sistani, Karamat

    2010-01-01

    Ammonia volatilization from the mineralization of uric acid and urea has a major impact on the poultry industry and the environment. Dry acids are commonly used to reduce ammonia emissions from poultry houses; however, little is known about how acidification affects the litter biologically. The goal of this laboratory incubation was to compare the microbiological and physiochemical effects of dry acid amendments (Al+Clear, Poultry Litter Treatment, Poultry Guard) on poultry litter to an untreated control litter and to specifically correlate uric acid and urea contents of these litters to the microbes responsible for their mineralization. Although all three acidifiers eventually produced similar effects within the litter, there was at least a 2-wk delay in the microbiological responses using Poultry Litter Treatment. Acidification of the poultry litter resulted in >3 log increases in total fungal concentrations, with both uricolytic (uric acid degrading) and ureolytic (urea degrading) fungi increasing by >2 logs within the first 2 to 4 wk of the incubation. Conversely, total, uricolytic, and ureolytic bacterial populations all significantly declined during this same time period. While uric acid and urea mineralization occurred within the first 2 wk in the untreated control litter, acidification resulted in delayed mineralization events for both uric acid and urea (2 and 4 wk delay, respectively) once fungal cell concentrations exceeded a threshold level. Therefore, fungi, and especially uricolytic fungi, appear to have a vital role in the mineralization of organic N in low-pH, high-N environments, and the activity of these fungi should be considered in best management practices to reduce ammonia volatilization from acidified poultry litter.

  16. An evaluation of the presence of pathogens on broilers raised on poultry litter treatment-treated litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, M J; Cherry, T E

    2000-09-01

    Two trials were conducted to evaluate the presence of salmonella, campylobacter, and generic Escherichia coli on broilers raised on Poultry Litter Treatment (PLT)-enhanced litter in comparison with those raised on untreated litter. Two Company A farms included three houses on each farm as the treated group and three houses per farm as controls. Two complete growouts were evaluated on each farm. The Company B study included 10 farms with two paired houses per farm, one house as the treated group and one house as the control. One growout was evaluated per farm. The pathogen sampling consisted of litter sampling and whole bird rinses on the farm and in the processing plant. Litter pH, ammonia concentration, total litter bacteria, temperatures, and humidity were also recorded. The study with Company A resulted in lower mean levels of pH, ammonia concentration, total litter bacteria, litter E. coli, and bird rinse counts for salmonella and E. coli in houses treated with PLT. The results for Company B closely resembled those for Company A, but also included campylobacter data, which showed no difference between treated and control groups. The data indicate that PLT may be a beneficial component for on-farm pathogen reduction.

  17. Genome sequence analysis of the model grass Brachypodium distachyon: insights into grass genome evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schulman, Al

    2009-08-09

    Three subfamilies of grasses, the Erhardtoideae (rice), the Panicoideae (maize, sorghum, sugar cane and millet), and the Pooideae (wheat, barley and cool season forage grasses) provide the basis of human nutrition and are poised to become major sources of renewable energy. Here we describe the complete genome sequence of the wild grass Brachypodium distachyon (Brachypodium), the first member of the Pooideae subfamily to be completely sequenced. Comparison of the Brachypodium, rice and sorghum genomes reveals a precise sequence- based history of genome evolution across a broad diversity of the grass family and identifies nested insertions of whole chromosomes into centromeric regions as a predominant mechanism driving chromosome evolution in the grasses. The relatively compact genome of Brachypodium is maintained by a balance of retroelement replication and loss. The complete genome sequence of Brachypodium, coupled to its exceptional promise as a model system for grass research, will support the development of new energy and food crops

  18. Grass survey of the Itremo Massif records endemic central highland ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Twenty species are endemic to the central highlands, and a further 1 4 species are restricted to Madagascar. Five ecological groups of grasses were identified in the Itremo Massif: shade species in gallery forests, open wet area species, fire grasses, anthropogenic disturbance associated grasses and rock-dwelling grasses.

  19. Pampas Grass - Orange Co. [ds351

    Data.gov (United States)

    California Natural Resource Agency — This dataset provides the known distribution of pampas grass (Cortaderia selloana) in southern Orange County. The surveys were conducted from May to June, 2007 and...

  20. Tree-grass interactions in savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available Savannas occur where trees and grasses interact to create a biome that is neither grassland nor forest. Woody and gramineous plants interact by many mechanisms, some negative (competition) and some positive (facilitation). The strength and sign...

  1. POTENTIALS OF AGRICULTURAL WASTE AND GRASSES IN ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Shima

    Potentials of some agricultural waste and grasses were investigated. ... to education, printing, publishing and ... technical form, paper is an aqueous deposit ..... Period of. Soaking. Overnight. Overnight. Overnight. Overnight. Overnight.

  2. Grasses for energy production: hydrological guidelines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hall, R.L.

    2003-07-01

    This report provides hydrological guidelines for growers, land and water resource managers, environmental groups and other parties interested in utilising grasses for energy production. The aim of the report is to help interested parties decide if a location is suitable for planting energy grasses by considering whether potential hydrological impacts will have an adverse effect on crop productivity and yield. The guidelines consider: the water use of energy grasses compared with other crops; the factors governing water use; the water requirements for a productive crop; and the likely impacts on the availability and quantity of water. The report points out that there are still gaps in our knowledge of the processes controlling the water use and growth of energy grasses and notes that, in some situations, there will be considerable uncertainty in predictions of water use and the magnitude of the associated hydrological impacts.

  3. Imaging spectroscopy for characterisation of grass swards

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schut, A.G.T.

    2003-01-01

    Keywords: Imaging spectroscopy, imaging spectrometry, remote sensing, reflection, reflectance, grass sward, white clover, recognition, characterisation, ground cover, growth monitoring, stress detection, heterogeneity quantification

    The potential of imaging spectroscopy as a tool for

  4. Karl Konrad Grass jumalainimeste uurijana / Alar Laats

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Laats, Alar

    2006-01-01

    Karl Konrad Grass oli 19. sajandil Dorpati keiserliku ülikooli usuteaduskonna Uue Testamendi õppejõud, kes tegeles hobi korras idakristluse (vene sektid) uurimisega. Tema peateoseks on uurimus "Die russischen Sekten". Ettekanne konverentsil 15.-16. aprill 2005. a.

  5. Decomposition, nitrogen and phosphorus mineralization from beech leaf litter colonized with ectomycorrhizal or litter decomposing basidiomycetes

    OpenAIRE

    COLPAERT, Jan; VAN TICHELEN, Katia

    1996-01-01

    The decomposition and the nitrogen and phosphorus mineralization of fresh beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) leaf litter are described. Leaves were buried for up to 6 months in plant containers in which Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seedlings were cultivated at a low rate of nutrient addition. The saprotrophic abilities of three ectomycorrhizal fungi, Thelephora terrestris Ehrh.: Fr., Suillus bovinus (L.: Fr.) O. Kuntze and Paxillus involutes (Batsch: Fr) Fr., were compared with the degradation ca...

  6. Self-reinforcing impacts of plant invasions change over time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yelenik, Stephanie G; D'Antonio, Carla M

    2013-11-28

    Returning native species to habitats degraded by biological invasions is a critical conservation goal. A leading hypothesis poses that exotic plant dominance is self-reinforced by impacts on ecosystem processes, leading to persistent stable states. Invaders have been documented to modify fire regimes, alter soil nutrients or shift microbial communities in ways that feed back to benefit themselves over competitors. However, few studies have followed invasions through time to ask whether ecosystem impacts and feedbacks persist. Here we return to woodland sites in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park that were invaded by exotic C4 grasses in the 1960s, the ecosystem impacts of which were studied intensively in the 1990s. We show that positive feedbacks between exotic grasses and soil nitrogen cycling have broken down, but rather than facilitating native vegetation, the weakening feedbacks facilitate new exotic species. Data from the 1990s showed that exotic grasses increased nitrogen-mineralization rates by two- to fourfold, but were nitrogen-limited. Thus, the impacts of the invader created a positive feedback early in the invasion. We now show that annual net soil nitrogen mineralization has since dropped to pre-invasion levels. In addition, a seedling outplanting experiment that varied soil nitrogen and grass competition demonstrates that the changing impacts of grasses do not favour native species re-establishment. Instead, decreased nitrogen availability most benefits another aggressive invader, the nitrogen-fixing tree Morella faya. Long-term studies of invasions may reveal that ecosystem impacts and feedbacks shift over time, but that this may not benefit native species recovery.

  7. Public perspective towards marine litter in West Aceh City

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kusumawati, I.; Setyowati, M.; Riana, E.; Prartono, T.

    2018-03-01

    Marine litter or marine debris is a man-made solid material discarded, abandoned or lost in coastline or into the sea. To reduce the amount of marine litter in the ocean, raising public awareness is an important way. One of the contributing factors on marine litter is the lack of understanding within the community, but to identify how people notice the problem is required adequate research literature. The purpose of this study is to examine the awareness of West Aceh community on marine litter along western coastal area. The research objectives; 1) to evaluate societal perception towards marine litter; 2) to examine the urgent indicator of public awareness in West Aceh City. This study will employ a survey approach by distributing questionnaires to 383 respondents. It was found that respondents show low awareness on marine litter according to statistical data, but there are some rooms to manage in order to raise the level of public awareness. It concludes that sense of responsibility could be enhanced by involving public in any activities for preventing and eradicating marine litter. Education aspect is also important to increase public understanding about the threats of marine debris on environment, human health and economic income.

  8. Control of invasive weeds with prescribed burning

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiTomaso, Joseph M.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Allen, Edith B.; Minnich, Ralph; Rice, Peter M.; Kyser, Guy B.

    2006-01-01

    Prescribed burning has primarily been used as a tool for the control of invasive late-season annual broadleaf and grass species, particularly yellow starthistle, medusahead, barb goatgrass, and several bromes. However, timely burning of a few invasive biennial broadleaves (e.g., sweetclover and garlic mustard), perennial grasses (e.g., bluegrasses and smooth brome), and woody species (e.g., brooms and Chinese tallow tree) also has been successful. In many cases, the effectiveness of prescribed burning can be enhanced when incorporated into an integrated vegetation management program. Although there are some excellent examples of successful use of prescribed burning for the control of invasive species, a limited number of species have been evaluated. In addition, few studies have measured the impact of prescribed burning on the long-term changes in plant communities, impacts to endangered plant species, effects on wildlife and insect populations, and alterations in soil biology, including nutrition, mycorrhizae, and hydrology. In this review, we evaluate the current state of knowledge on prescribed burning as a tool for invasive weed management.

  9. Influence of Covering Reused Broiler Litter with Plastic Canvas on Litter Characteristics and Bacteriology and the Subsequent Immunity and Microbiology of Broilers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D Mesa

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In broiler production, the litter is reused for consecutives flocks, and it is treated during down time between flocks to reduce its microbial load. Although covering the litter with a plastic canvas is a common litter treatment in the field, there is little scientific information available on its efficacy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of covering broiler litter with a plastic canvas for eight days on litter microbiological, physical, and chemical parameters, and on the intestinal microbiota and immunity of broilers. In the first trial, reused litter from a previous flock was distributed into three treatments, with six replicates each: L1 (negative control, litter free from Salmonella Enteritidis (SE and Eimeria maxima (EM and not covered, L2 (positive control, litter with SE and EM, and not covered, and L3 (litter with SE and EM, and covered with plastic canvas for eight days. Litter total bacteria, Enterobacteria, Lactobacillus, SE, and EM counts, and litter pH, temperature, moisture, and ammonia emission were determined on days 1 and 8. In the second trial, broilers were housed on those litters according to the treatments described above, and their intestinal microbiota, gut CD4+ and CD8+ lymphocytes and macrophages, and liver and intestinal pro-inflammatory interleukin (IFN-γ, IL-1β e IL-18 levels were evaluated on days 14 and 28. A significant reduction of litter bacterial populations was observed in the litter covered with plastic canvas. A significantly higher mRNA IFN-γ gene expression (12.5-fold was observed in the jejunum and liver of broilers reared on the litter with Enterobacteria counts. No EM reduction was observed in the covered litter. Covering reused broiler litter with plastic canvas reduces initial litter bacterial load as a result of the interaction between physical and chemical parameters.

  10. Genetic compatibility determines endophyte-grass combinations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kari Saikkonen

    Full Text Available Even highly mutually beneficial microbial-plant interactions, such as mycorrhizal- and rhizobial-plant exchanges, involve selfishness, cheating and power-struggles between the partners, which depending on prevailing selective pressures, lead to a continuum of interactions from antagonistic to mutualistic. Using manipulated grass-endophyte combinations in a five year common garden experiment, we show that grass genotypes and genetic mismatches constrain genetic combinations between the vertically (via host seeds transmitted endophytes and the out-crossing host, thereby reducing infections in established grass populations. Infections were lost in both grass tillers and seedlings in F(1 and F(2 generations, respectively. Experimental plants were collected as seeds from two different environments, i.e., meadows and nearby riverbanks. Endophyte-related benefits to the host included an increased number of inflorescences, but only in meadow plants and not until the last growing season of the experiment. Our results illustrate the importance of genetic host specificity and trans-generational maternal effects on the genetic structure of a host population, which act as destabilizing forces in endophyte-grass symbioses. We propose that (1 genetic mismatches may act as a buffering mechanism against highly competitive endophyte-grass genotype combinations threatening the biodiversity of grassland communities and (2 these mismatches should be acknowledged, particularly in breeding programmes aimed at harnessing systemic and heritable endophytes to improve the agriculturally valuable characteristics of cultivars.

  11. Ambient temperature affects postnatal litter size reduction in golden hamsters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohrnberger, Sarah A; Monclús, Raquel; Rödel, Heiko G; Valencak, Teresa G

    2016-01-01

    To better understand how different ambient temperatures during lactation affect survival of young, we studied patterns of losses of pups in golden hamsters ( Mesocricetus auratus ) at different ambient temperatures in the laboratory, mimicking temperature conditions in natural habitats. Golden hamsters produce large litters of more than 10 young but are also known to wean fewer pups at the end of lactation than they give birth to. We wanted to know whether temperature affects litter size reductions and whether the underlying causes of pup loss were related to maternal food (gross energy) intake and reproductive performance, such as litter growth. For that, we exposed lactating females to three different ambient temperatures and investigated associations with losses of offspring between birth and weaning. Overall, around one third of pups per litter disappeared, obviously consumed by the mother. Such litter size reductions were greatest at 30 °C, in particular during the intermediate postnatal period around peak lactation. Furthermore, litter size reductions were generally higher in larger litters. Maternal gross energy intake was highest at 5 °C suggesting that mothers were not limited by milk production and might have been able to raise a higher number of pups until weaning. This was further supported by the fact that the daily increases in litter mass as well as in the individual pup body masses, a proxy of mother's lactational performance, were lower at higher ambient temperatures. We suggest that ambient temperatures around the thermoneutral zone and beyond are preventing golden hamster females from producing milk at sufficient rates. Around two thirds of the pups per litter disappeared at high temperature conditions, and their early growth rates were significantly lower than at lower ambient temperatures. It is possible that these losses are due to an intrinsic physiological limitation (imposed by heat dissipation) compromising maternal energy intake and

  12. Negative impacts of invasive plants on conservation of sensitive desert wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, K. Kristina; Bowen, Lizabeth; Nussear, Kenneth E.; Esque, Todd C.; Berger, Andrew J.; Custer, Nathan; Waters, Shannon C.; Johnson, Jay D.; Miles, A. Keith; Lewison, Rebecca L.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat disturbance from development, resource extraction, off-road vehicle use, and energy development ranks highly among threats to desert systems worldwide. In the Mojave Desert, United States, these disturbances have promoted the establishment of nonnative plants, so that native grasses and forbs are now intermixed with, or have been replaced by invasive, nonnative Mediterranean grasses. This shift in plant composition has altered food availability for Mojave Desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii), a federally listed species. We hypothesized that this change in forage would negatively influence the physiological ecology, immune competence, and health of neonatal and yearling tortoises. To test this, we monitored the effects of diet on growth, body condition, immunological responses (measured by gene transcription), and survival for 100 captive Mojave tortoises. Tortoises were assigned to one of five diets: native forbs, native grass, invasive grass, and native forbs combined with either the native or invasive grass. Tortoises eating native forbs had better body condition and immune functions, grew more, and had higher survival rates (>95%) than tortoises consuming any other diet. At the end of the experiment, 32% of individuals fed only native grass and 37% fed only invasive grass were found dead or removed from the experiment due to poor body conditions. In contrast, all tortoises fed either the native forb or combined native forb and native grass diets survived and were in good condition. Health and body condition quickly declined for tortoises fed only the native grass (Festuca octoflora) or invasive grass (Bromus rubens) with notable loss of fat and muscle mass and increased muscular atrophy. Bromus rubens seeds were found embedded in the oral mucosa and tongue in most individuals eating that diet, which led to mucosal inflammation. Genes indicative of physiological, immune, and metabolic functions were transcribed at lower levels for individuals fed B

  13. Treatment with grass allergen peptides improves symptoms of grass pollen-induced allergic rhinoconjunctivitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Anne K; Frankish, Charles W; O'Hehir, Robyn E; Armstrong, Kristen; Steacy, Lisa; Larché, Mark; Hafner, Roderick P

    2017-08-01

    Synthetic peptide immunoregulatory epitopes are a new class of immunotherapy to treat allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (ARC). Grass allergen peptides, comprising 7 synthetic T-cell epitopes derived from Cyn d 1, Lol p 5, Dac g 5, Hol l 5, and Phl p 5, is investigated for treatment of grass pollen-induced ARC. We sought to evaluate the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of intradermally administered grass allergen peptides. A multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated 3 regimens of grass allergen peptides versus placebo in patients with grass pollen-induced allergy (18-65 years). After a 4-day baseline challenge to rye grass in the environmental exposure unit (EEU), subjects were randomized to receive grass allergen peptides at 6 nmol at 2-week intervals for a total of 8 doses (8x6Q2W), grass allergen peptides at 12 nmol at 4-week intervals for a total of 4 doses (4x12Q4W), or grass allergen peptides at 12 nmol at 2-week intervals for a total of 8 doses (8x12Q2W) or placebo and treated before the grass pollen season. The primary efficacy end point was change from baseline in total rhinoconjunctivitis symptom score across days 2 to 4 of a 4-day posttreatment challenge (PTC) in the EEU after the grass pollen season. Secondary efficacy end points and safety were also assessed. Two hundred eighty-two subjects were randomized. Significantly greater improvement (reduction of total rhinoconjunctivitis symptom score from baseline to PTC) occurred across days 2 to 4 with grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W versus placebo (-5.4 vs -3.8, respectively; P = .0346). Greater improvement at PTC also occurred for grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W versus placebo (P = .0403) in patients with more symptomatic ARC. No safety signals were detected. Grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W significantly improved ARC symptoms after rye grass allergen challenge in an EEU with an acceptable safety profile. Copyright © 2017 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology

  14. Poultry litter power station in the United Kingdom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1995-01-01

    Poultry litter has presented a waste disposal problem to the poultry industry in many parts of the United Kingdom. The plant at Eye is a small to medium scale power station, fired using poultry litter. The 12.7 MW of electricity generated is supplied, through the local utility, to the National Grid. The spent litter that constitutes the fuel is made up of excrement and animal bedding (usually 90% excrement and 10% straw or wood shavings). It comes from large climate-controlled buildings (broiler houses) where birds, reared for meat production, are allowed to roam freely. (UK)

  15. Effect of different types of litter material for rearing broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swain, B K; Sundaram, R N

    2000-07-01

    1. Coir dust was evaluated as broiler litter in comparison with sawdust and rice husk using 135 commercial broilers. Forty-five broiler chicks were reared to 42 d on a 50 mm layer of each of these litters. 2. Birds reared on coir dust showed no difference in food consumption, body weight gain, food conversion efficiency production number and survivability in comparison to those reared on saw dust and rice husk. 3. It was concluded that coir dust is suitable as broiler litter when cheaply available.

  16. Ammonia and nitrous oxide emissions from broiler houses with downtime windrowed litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    An emerging poultry manure management practice is in house windrowing to disinfect the litter. With this practice, growers windrow the litter in broiler houses between flocks, usually for 2 weeks. This results in high litter temperatures that can reduce pathogens in the litter. However, this practi...

  17. Litter mixture interactions at the level of plant functional types are additive.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoorens, B.; Stroetenga, M.J.; Aerts, R.

    2010-01-01

    It is very difficult to estimate litter decomposition rates in natural ecosystems because litters of many species are mixed and idiosyncratic interactions occur among those litters. A way to tackle this problem is to investigate litter mixing effects not at the species level but at the level of

  18. Nutritional value of cabbage and kikuyu grass as food for grass carp ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    and digestibility coefficients were obtained for the protein, fibre, ash and fat contents of both ... Cabbage is a superior feed compared to grass for raising grass carp and a suitable low-cost alternative ... Materials and Methods ... from jumping out and was fitted with an air lift under- .... In: Aquatic weeds in South East Asia.

  19. Gene Expression Profiling of Grass Carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus and Crisp Grass Carp

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ermeng Yu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus is one of the most important freshwater fish that is native to China, and crisp grass carp is a kind of high value-added fishes which have higher muscle firmness. To investigate biological functions and possible signal transduction pathways that address muscle firmness increase of crisp grass carp, microarray analysis of 14,900 transcripts was performed. Compared with grass carp, 127 genes were upregulated and 114 genes were downregulated in crisp grass carp. Gene ontology (GO analysis revealed 30 GOs of differentially expressed genes in crisp grass carp. And strong correlation with muscle firmness increase of crisp grass carp was found for these genes from differentiation of muscle fibers and deposition of ECM, and also glycolysis/gluconeogenesis pathway and calcium metabolism may contribute to muscle firmness increase. In addition, a number of genes with unknown functions may be related to muscle firmness, and these genes are still further explored. Overall, these results had been demonstrated to play important roles in clarifying the molecular mechanism of muscle firmness increase in crisp grass carp.

  20. Different techniques to study rumen fermentation characteristics of maturing grass and grass silage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cone, J.W.; Gelder, van A.H.; Soliman, I.A.; Visser, de H.; Vuuren, van A.M.

    1999-01-01

    Grass samples were harvested during the 1993 growing season after a precut on April 27, 1993 and were stored frozen or left to ensile in 30-L buckets. Effects on chemical composition and fermentation kinetics of the maturation of the grass and of ensiling were investigated. Chemical composition and

  1. Analysis of the soil food web structure under grass and grass clover

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eekeren, van N.J.M.; Smeding, F.W.; Vries, de F.T.; Bloem, J.

    2006-01-01

    The below ground biodiversity of soil organisms plays an important role in the functioning of the the soil ecosystem, and consequently the above ground plant production. The objective of this study is to investigate the effect of grass or grass-clover in combination with fertilisation on the soil

  2. Post-ruminal digestibility of crude protein from grass and grass silages in cows

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cone, J.W.; Gelder, van A.H.; Mathijssen-Kamman, A.A.; Hindle, V.A.

    2006-01-01

    Grass samples were grown on a clay or sandy soil, fertilised with 150 or 300 kg N/ha per year, and harvested on different days during two consecutive growing seasons. The grass samples were stored frozen or ensiled after wilting to approximately 250 or 450 g DM/kg. The recoveries of crude protein

  3. Resilience to stress and disturbance, and resistance to Bromus tectorum LBromus tectorum L. invasion in cold desert shrublands of western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanne C. Chambers; Bethany A. Bradley; Cynthia S. Brown; Carla D' Antonio; Matthew J. Germino; James B. Grace; Stuart P. Hardegree; Richard F. Miller; David A. Pyke

    2014-01-01

    Alien grass invasions in arid and semi-arid ecosystems are resulting in grass-fire cycles and ecosystem-level transformations that severely diminish ecosystem services. Our capacity to address the rapid and complex changes occurring in these ecosystems can be enhanced by developing an understanding of the environmental factors and ecosystem attributes that determine...

  4. mangrove litter production and seasonality of dominant species

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    L.A

    storminess, and sea-level rise (Snedaker, 1995; Nigel, 1998). In the last .... mangrove species (three-levels) were entered as fixed factors, with the total litter components ..... Mangroves and climate change in the Florida and Caribbean region:.

  5. Street Littering in Nigerian Towns: towards a Framework for ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nekky Umera

    behaviour certainly affects everyone's quality of life, gives a visitor a bad first impression and .... sex, education level, occupation, effects of littering, etc.). Levels of .... creams, bananas, junk food, etc) along the streets than older people, as the.

  6. Use of natural zeolite-supplemented litter increased broiler production

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    smyo

    aimed at elucidating the effects of combinations of these products as litter on poultry production, such as .... The bulbs on the ceiling were used ... sample, curved fibrous and acicular mordenites were derived from volcanic glass (Figure 2b).

  7. Effect of leaf litter quantity and type on forest soil fauna and biological quality

    OpenAIRE

    Zhizhong Yuan; Yang Cui; Shaokui Yan

    2013-01-01

    It is important to assess forest litter management. Here we examined the effects of leaf litter addition on the soil faunal community in Huitong subtropical forest region in Hunan Province, China. The microcosm experiment involving leaf-litter manipulation using a block and nested experimental design, respectively, was established in May, 2011. In the block design, the effects of litter quantity and its control were examined, while in the nested design a comparison was made of litter quality ...

  8. An integral projection model with YY-males and application to evaluating grass carp control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Richard A.; Eager, Eric A.; Brey, Marybeth; Hansen, Michael J.; Kocovsky, Patrick

    2017-01-01

    Invasive fish species disrupt ecosystems and cause economic damage. Several methods have been discussed to control populations of invasive fish including the release of YY-males. YY-males are fish that have 2 male chromosomes compared to a XY-male. When YY-males mate, they only produce male (XY) offspring. This decreases the female proportion of the population and can, in theory, eradicate local populations by biasing the sex-ratio. YY-males have been used as a population control tool for brook trout in montane streams and lakes in Idaho, USA. The YY-male control method has been discussed for grass carp in Lake Erie, North America. We developed and presented an integral projection model for grass carp to model the use of YY-males as a control method for populations in this lake. Using only the YY-male control method, we found that high levels of YY-males would need to be release annually to control the species. Specifically, these levels were the same order of magnitude as the baseline adult population (e.g., 1000 YY-males needed to be released annual for 20 years to control a baseline adult population of 2500 grass carp). These levels may not be reasonable or obtainable for fisheries managers given the impacts of YY-males on aquatic vegetation and other constraints of natural resource management.

  9. Effect of prenatal irradiation on total litter birth weight

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angleton, G.M.; Lee, A.C.

    1981-01-01

    Total litter weight at birth was used as a response variable to study the effects of in utero irradiations on birth weight. Analyses were performed in such a manner as to allow for variations in litter size and environmental temperatures. No effects due to irradiation were noted for exposures given 8 days postcoitus (dpc) and 55 dpc. However, for exposures given 28 dpc, a 5% decrement in birth weight was found for an 80 rad dose

  10. Effects of invasive plants on arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Litt, Andrea R; Cord, Erin E; Fulbright, Timothy E; Schuster, Greta L

    2014-12-01

    Non-native plants have invaded nearly all ecosystems and represent a major component of global ecological change. Plant invasions frequently change the composition and structure of vegetation communities, which can alter animal communities and ecosystem processes. We reviewed 87 articles published in the peer-reviewed literature to evaluate responses of arthropod communities and functional groups to non-native invasive plants. Total abundance of arthropods decreased in 62% of studies and increased in 15%. Taxonomic richness decreased in 48% of studies and increased in 13%. Herbivorous arthropods decreased in response to plant invasions in 48% of studies and increased in 17%, likely due to direct effects of decreased plant diversity. Predaceous arthropods decreased in response to invasive plants in 44% of studies, which may reflect indirect effects due to reductions in prey. Twenty-two percent of studies documented increases in predators, which may reflect changes in vegetation structure that improved mobility, survival, or web-building for these species. Detritivores increased in 67% of studies, likely in response to increased litter and decaying vegetation; no studies documented decreased abundance in this functional group. Although many researchers have examined effects of plant invasions on arthropods, sizeable information gaps remain, specifically regarding how invasive plants influence habitat and dietary requirements. Beyond this, the ability to predict changes in arthropod populations and communities associated with plant invasions could be improved by adopting a more functional and mechanistic approach. Understanding responses of arthropods to invasive plants will critically inform conservation of virtually all biodiversity and ecological processes because so many organisms depend on arthropods as prey or for their functional roles, including pollination, seed dispersal, and decomposition. Given their short generation times and ability to respond rapidly to

  11. Revegetation of coal mine soil with forest litter

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Day, A.D.; Ludeke, K.L.; Thames, J.L.

    1986-11-01

    Forest litter, a good source of organic matter and seeds, was applied on undisturbed soil and on coal mine (spoils) in experiments conducted on the Black Mesa Coal Mine near Kayenta, Arizona over a 2-year period (1977-1978). Germination, seedling establishment, plant height and ground cover were evaluated for two seeding treatments (forest litter and no forest litter) and two soil moisture treatments (natural rainfall and natural rainfall plus irrigation). The forest litter was obtained at random from the Coconino National Forest, broadcast over the surface of the soil materials and incorporated into the surface 5 cm of each soil material. Germination, seedling establishment, plant height and ground cover on undisturbed soil and coal mine soil were higher when forest litter was applied than when it was not applied and when natural rainfall was supplemented with sprinkler irrigation than when rainfall was not supplemented with irrigation. Applications of forest litter and supplemental irrigation may ensure successful establishment of vegetation on areas disturbed by open-pit coal mining.

  12. Amending triple superphosphate with chicken litter biochar improves phosphorus availability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Audrey Asap

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The reaction of H2PO42- and HPO4- with Al and Fe in acid soils to form a precipitate reduces P availability. Chicken litter biochar has been used to improve soil P availability for maize production but with limited information on optimum rates of biochar and Triple Superphosphate (TSP to increase P availability. This study determined the optimum amount of chicken litter biochar and TSP that could increase P availability. Different rates of chicken litter biochar and TSP were evaluated in an incubation study for 30, 60, and 90 days. Selected soil chemical properties before and after incubation were determined using standard procedures. Soil pH, total P, available P, and water soluble P increased in treatments with 75% and 50% biochar. Total acidity, exchangeable Al3+, and Fe2+ were significantly reduced by the chicken litter biochar. The chicken litter biochar also increased soil CEC and exchangeable cations (K, Ca, Mg and Na. The use of 75% and 50% of 5 t ha-1 biochar with 25% TSP of the existing recommendation can be used to increase P availability whilst minimizing soil Al and Fe content. This rates can be used to optimize chicken litter biochar and TSP use in acid soils for crop production especially maize and short term vegetables.

  13. Species diversity and chemical properties of litter influence non-additive effects of litter mixtures on soil carbon and nitrogen cycling

    OpenAIRE

    Mao, Bing; Mao, Rong; Zeng, De-Hui

    2017-01-01

    Decomposition of litter mixtures generally cannot be predicted from the component species incubated in isolation. Therefore, such non-additive effects of litter mixing on soil C and N dynamics remain poorly understood in terrestrial ecosystems. In this study, litters of Mongolian pine and three dominant understory species and soil were collected from a Mongolian pine plantation in Northeast China. In order to examine the effects of mixed-species litter on soil microbial biomass N, soil net N ...

  14. Evaluation of litter type and dietary coarse ground corn inclusion on broiler live performance, gastrointestinal tract development, and litter characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Y; Stark, C R; Ferket, P R; Williams, C M; Nusairat, B; Brake, J

    2015-03-01

    Two 49 d floor pen studies were conducted to evaluate the effects of litter type and dietary coarse ground corn (CC) inclusion on broiler live performance, gastrointestinal tract (GIT) development, and litter characteristics. Experiment 1 was a 2×2 factorial arrangement of 2 genders (male or female) and 2 CC levels (0 or 50%). From 15 to 35 d, the addition of CC decreased feed intake (Pbroilers exhibited better live performance than females during the study as evidenced by greater feed intake (Plitter types (ground old litter or new wood shavings litter). The inclusion of CC decreased feed intake throughout the experiment without affecting final BW when only males were used and improved FCR after 25 d (Plitter improved FCR from 1 to 14 d (Plitter moisture (Plitter had only a marginal benefit on broiler live performance. © 2015 Poultry Science Association Inc.

  15. Litter mercury deposition in the Amazonian rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fostier, Anne Hélène; Melendez-Perez, José Javier; Richter, Larissa

    2015-11-01

    The objective of this work was to assess the flux of atmospheric mercury transferred to the soil of the Amazonian rainforest by litterfall. Calculations were based on a large survey of published and unpublished data on litterfall and Hg concentrations in litterfall samples from the Amazonian region. Litterfall based on 65 sites located in the Amazon rainforest averaged 8.15 ± 2.25 Mg ha(-1) y(-1). Average Hg concentrations were calculated from nine datasets for fresh tree leaves and ten datasets for litter, and a median concentration of 60.5 ng Hg g(-1) was considered for Hg deposition in litterfall, which averaged 49 ± 14 μg m(-2) yr(-1). This value was used to estimate that in the Amazonian rainforest, litterfall would be responsible for the annual removing of 268 ± 77 Mg of Hg, approximately 8% of the total atmospheric Hg deposition to land. The impact of the Amazon deforestation on the Hg biogeochemical cycle is also discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Poultry litter and the environment: Physiochemical properties of litter and soil during successive flock rotations and after remote site deposition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crippen, Tawni L; Sheffield, Cynthia L; Byrd, J Allen; Esquivel, Jesus F; Beier, Ross C; Yeater, Kathleen

    2016-05-15

    The U.S. broiler meat market has grown over the past 16 years and destinations for U.S. broiler meat exports expanded to over 150 countries. This market opportunity has spurred a corresponding increase in industrialized poultry production, which due to the confined space in which high numbers of animals are housed, risks accumulating nutrients and pollutants. The purpose of this research was to determine the level of pollutants within poultry litter and the underlying soil within a production facility; and to explore the impact of spent litter deposition into the environment. The study follows a production facility for the first 2.5 years of production. It monitors the effects of successive flocks and management practices on 15 physiochemical parameters: Ca, Cu, electrical conductivity, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, moisture, Na, NO3(-)/N, organic matter, P, pH, S, and Zn. Litter samples were collected in-house, after clean-outs and during stockpiling. The soil before house placement, after the clean-outs and following litter stockpiling was monitored. Management practices markedly altered the physiochemical profiles of the litter in-house. A canonical discriminant analysis was used to describe the relationship between the parameters and sampling times. The litter profiles grouped into five clusters corresponding to time and management practices. The soil in-house exhibited mean increases in all physiochemical parameters (2-297 fold) except Fe, Mg, %M, and pH. The spent litter was followed after deposition onto a field for use as fertilizer. After 20 weeks, the soil beneath the litter exhibited increases in EC, Cu, K, Na, NO3(-)/N, %OM, P, S and Zn; while %M decreased. Understanding the impacts of industrialized poultry farms on the environment is vital as the cumulative ecological impact of this land usage could be substantial if not properly managed to reduce the risk of potential pollutant infiltration into the environment. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  17. Role of carbohydrate metabolism in grass tetany

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, J.K.; Madsen, F.C.; Lentz, D.E.; Hansard, S.L.

    1977-01-01

    Clinical hypomagnesemia is confined primarily to beef cattle in the United States but also occurs in dairy cattle in other countries, probably due to different management practices. During periods when grass tetany is likely, early vegetative temperate zone grasses are usually low in total readily available carbohydrates and magnesium but high in potassium and nitrogen. The tetany syndrome may include hypoglycemia and ketosis, suggesting an imbalance in intermediary energy metabolism. Many enzyme systems critical to cellular metabolism, including those which hydrolyze and transfer phosphate groups, are activated by Mg. Thus, by inference, Mg is required for normal glucose utilization, fat, protein, nucleic acid and coenzyme synthesis, muscle contraction, methyl group transfer, and sulfate, acetate, and formate activation. Numerous clinical and experimental studies suggest an intimate relationship between metabolism of Mg and that of carbohydrate, glucagon, and insulin. The objective is to review this literature and suggest ways in which these relationships might contribute to a chain of events leading to grass tetany.

  18. Controlling grass weeds on hard surfaces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rask, Anne Merete; Kristoffersen, Palle; Andreasen, Christian

    2012-01-01

    An experiment was conducted on a specially designed hard surface to study the impact of time interval between flaming treatments on the regrowth and flower production of two grass weeds. The goal of this experiment was to optimize the control of annual bluegrass and perennial ryegrass, both species...... that are very difficult to control without herbicides. Aboveground biomass from 72 plants per treatment was harvested and dry weights were recorded at regular intervals to investigate how the plants responded to flaming. Regrowth of the grasses was measured by harvesting aboveground biomass 2 wk after......, as they did not increase the reduction of aboveground biomass compared with the 7-d treatment interval. Knowledge on the regrowth of grass weeds after flaming treatments provided by this study can help improve recommendations given to road keepers and park managers for management on these weeds. Nomenclature...

  19. Biogas and Methane Yield from Rye Grass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomáš Vítěz

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Biogas production in the Czech Republic has expanded substantially, including marginal regions for maize cultivation. Therefore, there are increasingly sought materials that could partially replace maize silage, as a basic feedstock, while secure both biogas production and its quality.Two samples of rye grass (Lolium multiflorum var. westerwoldicum silage with different solids content 21% and 15% were measured for biogas and methane yield. Rye grass silage with solid content of 15% reached an average specific biogas yield 0.431 m3·kg−1 of organic dry matter and an average specific methane yield 0.249 m3·kg−1 of organic dry matter. Rye grass silage with solid content 21% reached an average specific biogas yield 0.654 m3·kg−1 of organic dry matter and an average specific methane yield 0.399 m3·kg−1 of organic dry matter.

  20. Rehabilitation experiment by phytoremediation using lawn grass

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-08-01

    Measures against environmental contamination by radioactive materials originated from the Fukushima Nuclear Accident (May, 2011), are being conducted in Fukushima and surrounding prefectures. Regarding to the measures, a phytoremediation experiment with several types of lawn grasses in a field scale have been carried out. Lawn grasses are generally characterized by shallow rhizosphere, high density and root mat formation. Decontamination effectiveness of radioactive cesium by plant uptake and by sod removing was investigated. As a result, the range of decontamination factors by plant uptake was below than 1% because of low transfer rate form soil to plant. On the other hand, maximum decontamination factor by sod removing reached about 100%. Decontamination activities with various methods will be implemented according to the national decontamination policy and related plans in each municipality. The phytoremediation method with lawn grass would be applicable in limited circumstances. (author)

  1. Species diversity and chemical properties of litter influence non-additive effects of litter mixtures on soil carbon and nitrogen cycling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Mao

    Full Text Available Decomposition of litter mixtures generally cannot be predicted from the component species incubated in isolation. Therefore, such non-additive effects of litter mixing on soil C and N dynamics remain poorly understood in terrestrial ecosystems. In this study, litters of Mongolian pine and three dominant understory species and soil were collected from a Mongolian pine plantation in Northeast China. In order to examine the effects of mixed-species litter on soil microbial biomass N, soil net N mineralization and soil respiration, four single litter species and their mixtures consisting of all possible 2-, 3- and 4-species combinations were added to soils, respectively. In most instances, species mixing produced synergistic non-additive effects on soil microbial biomass N and soil respiration, but antagonistic non-additive effects on net N mineralization. Species composition rather than species richness explained the non-additive effects of species mixing on soil microbial biomass N and net N mineralization, due to the interspecific differences in litter chemical composition. Both litter species composition and richness explained non-additive soil respiration responses to mixed-species litter, while litter chemical diversity and chemical composition did not. Our study indicated that litter mixtures promoted soil microbial biomass N and soil respiration, and inhibited net N mineralization. Soil N related processes rather than soil respiration were partly explained by litter chemical composition and chemical diversity, highlighting the importance of functional diversity of litter on soil N cycling.

  2. Development of piglets raised in a new multi-litter housing system vs. conventional single-litter housing until 9 weeks of age

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nieuwamerongen, van S.E.; Soede, N.M.; Peet-Schwering, van der C.M.C.; Kemp, B.; Bolhuis, J.E.

    2015-01-01

    This study compared the development until 9 wk of age of piglets raised in either a multi-litter (ML) system or a conventional single-litter (SL) system. The ML system consisted of a multi-suckling system with 5 sows and their litters before weaning, followed by housing in a pen with enrichment in a

  3. Impacts of elevated atmospheric CO2 on litter quality, litter decomposability and nitrogen turnover rate of two oak species in a Mediterranean forest ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fayez Raiesi Gahrooee,

    1998-01-01

    Elevated CO2 may affect litter quality of plants, and subsequently C and N cycling in terrestrial ecosystems, but changes in litter quality associated with elevated CO2 are poorly known. Abscised leaf litter of two oak species (Quercus cerris L., and Q. pubescens Willd.) exposed to long-term

  4. Species diversity and chemical properties of litter influence non-additive effects of litter mixtures on soil carbon and nitrogen cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Bing; Mao, Rong; Zeng, De-Hui

    2017-01-01

    Decomposition of litter mixtures generally cannot be predicted from the component species incubated in isolation. Therefore, such non-additive effects of litter mixing on soil C and N dynamics remain poorly understood in terrestrial ecosystems. In this study, litters of Mongolian pine and three dominant understory species and soil were collected from a Mongolian pine plantation in Northeast China. In order to examine the effects of mixed-species litter on soil microbial biomass N, soil net N mineralization and soil respiration, four single litter species and their mixtures consisting of all possible 2-, 3- and 4-species combinations were added to soils, respectively. In most instances, species mixing produced synergistic non-additive effects on soil microbial biomass N and soil respiration, but antagonistic non-additive effects on net N mineralization. Species composition rather than species richness explained the non-additive effects of species mixing on soil microbial biomass N and net N mineralization, due to the interspecific differences in litter chemical composition. Both litter species composition and richness explained non-additive soil respiration responses to mixed-species litter, while litter chemical diversity and chemical composition did not. Our study indicated that litter mixtures promoted soil microbial biomass N and soil respiration, and inhibited net N mineralization. Soil N related processes rather than soil respiration were partly explained by litter chemical composition and chemical diversity, highlighting the importance of functional diversity of litter on soil N cycling.

  5. Responses of the soil fungal communities to the co-invasion of two invasive species with different cover classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, C; Zhou, J; Liu, J; Jiang, K; Xiao, H; Du, D

    2018-01-01

    Soil fungal communities play an important role in the successful invasion of non-native species. It is common for two or more invasive plant species to co-occur in invaded ecosystems. This study aimed to determine the effects of co-invasion of two invasive species (Erigeron annuus and Solidago canadensis) with different cover classes on soil fungal communities using high-throughput sequencing. Invasion of E. annuus and/or S. canadensis had positive effects on the sequence number, operational taxonomic unit (OTU) richness, Shannon diversity, abundance-based cover estimator (ACE index) and Chao1 index of soil fungal communities, but negative effects on the Simpson index. Thus, invasion of E. annuus and/or S. canadensis could increase diversity and richness of soil fungal communities but decrease dominance of some members of these communities, in part to facilitate plant further invasion, because high soil microbial diversity could increase soil functions and plant nutrient acquisition. Some soil fungal species grow well, whereas others tend to extinction after non-native plant invasion with increasing invasion degree and presumably time. The sequence number, OTU richness, Shannon diversity, ACE index and Chao1 index of soil fungal communities were higher under co-invasion of E. annuus and S. canadensis than under independent invasion of either individual species. The co-invasion of the two invasive species had a positive synergistic effect on diversity and abundance of soil fungal communities, partly to build a soil microenvironment to enhance competitiveness of the invaders. The changed diversity and community under co-invasion could modify resource availability and niche differentiation within the soil fungal communities, mediated by differences in leaf litter quality and quantity, which can support different fungal/microbial species in the soil. © 2017 German Society for Plant Sciences and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  6. Climatic, landform, microtopographic, and overstory canopy controls of tree invasion in a subalpine meadow landscape, Oregon Cascades, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harold S.J. Zald; Thomas A. Spies; Manuela Huso; Demetrios. Gatziolis

    2012-01-01

    Tree invasions have been documented throughout Northern Hemisphere high elevation meadows, as well as globally in many grass and forb-dominated ecosystems. Tree invasions are often associated with large-scale changes in climate or disturbance regimes, but are fundamentally driven by regeneration processes influenced by interactions between climatic, topographic, and...

  7. Effect of Reused Litter and Chemical Amendment on Broiler Chicken Performance and Litter Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Lotfi

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available An experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of chemical amendments and reused litter on broiler performances, immune response and skin quality. Five hundred and seventy six (576 day old broiler chickens were randomly allocated to 3x2 factorial design experiment. Three amendments treatment included control (no chemical addition, alunminum sulfate and zeolite; two types of litter were new and reused one. There were 4 replicates and 24 broiler chickens in each pen. The feed and water were available ad libitum during 42 days of experiment. The type of bedding had no significant effect on broilers performances (weight gain, feed efficiency ratio and mortality. Chemical amendments improved broilers performances during 0-35 days of production period but by the end of experiment there was no differences between treatment groups. Neither bedding type nor chemical amendments influenced skin erosion criteria responses. The immune response of broilers was not affected by either type of bedding or chemical amendments. It could be concluded that although beddings to be reused, it should be treated so as to overcome any defect of reused bedding.

  8. Genetic parameters for canalisation analysis of litter size and litter weight traits at birth in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salgado Concepción

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The aim of this research was to explore the genetic parameters associated with environmental variability for litter size (LS, litter weight (LW and mean individual birth weight (IW in mice before canalisation. The analyses were conducted on an experimental mice population designed to reduce environmental variability for LS. The analysed database included 1976 records for LW and IW and 4129 records for LS. The total number of individuals included in the analysed pedigree was 3997. Heritabilities estimated for the traits under an initial exploratory approach varied from 0.099 to 0.101 for LS, from 0.112 to 0.148 for LW and from 0.028 to 0.033 for IW. The means of the posterior distribution of the heritability under a Bayesian approach were the following: 0.10 (LS, 0.13 (LW and 0.03 (IW. In general, the heritabilities estimated under the initial exploratory approach for the environmental variability of the analysed traits were low. Genetic correlations estimated between the trait and its variability reached values of -0.929 (LS, -0.815 (LW and 0.969 (IW. The results presented here for the first time in mice may suggest a genetic basis for variability of the evaluated traits, thus opening the possibility to be implemented in selection schemes.

  9. Artificial neural networks for modeling time series of beach litter in the southern North Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulz, Marcus; Matthies, Michael

    2014-07-01

    In European marine waters, existing monitoring programs of beach litter need to be improved concerning litter items used as indicators of pollution levels, efficiency, and effectiveness. In order to ease and focus future monitoring of beach litter on few important litter items, feed-forward neural networks consisting of three layers were developed to relate single litter items to general categories of marine litter. The neural networks developed were applied to seven beaches in the southern North Sea and modeled time series of five general categories of marine litter, such as litter from fishing, shipping, and tourism. Results of regression analyses show that general categories were predicted significantly moderately to well. Measured and modeled data were in the same order of magnitude, and minima and maxima overlapped well. Neural networks were found to be eligible tools to deliver reliable predictions of marine litter with low computational effort and little input of information. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Effect of postnatal litter size on adult aggression in the laboratory mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, V; Wehmer, F

    1975-07-01

    Growth, emotionality, food competition, and aggression were examined in mice nursed in litters of 3 or 9 and reared in isolation until testing. Animals from large litters were lighter at weaning and in adulthood and were more emotional in the open field than subjects from small litters. They did not win more food competition tests than subjects from small litters although their consummatory behavior during food competition tests was greater. Subjects from large litters were more aggressive in initial encounters, but over repeated encounters became more submissive. In a 2nd open-field test, emotionality of large-litter subjects was reduced more than that of subjects from small litters. When later placed in group-living cages, subjects from small litters sustained less long term physical assault than subjects from large litters. High correlations were found between the 4 measures of brief aggression.

  11. Variation in important pasture grasses: I. Morphological and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Variation in important pasture grasses: I. Morphological and geographical variation. ... Seven species are important pasture grasses throughout the western Transvaal, Orange Free State, northern Cape and Natal. ... Language: English.

  12. Assessment of some macromineral concentration of a grass/ legume ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Assessment of some macromineral concentration of a grass/ legume sward in ... Bulletin of Animal Health and Production in Africa ... The study aimed to determine the concentration of some macromineral elements in the grass/legume pasture ...

  13. Modelling of excess noise attnuation by grass and forest | Onuu ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    , guinea grass (panicum maximum) and forest which comprises iroko (milicia ezcelea) and white afara (terminalia superba) trees in the ratio of 2:1 approximately. Excess noise attenuation spectra have been plotted for the grass and forest for ...

  14. Methane, nitrous oxide and ammonia emissions from pigs housed on litter and from stockpiling of spent litter

    KAUST Repository

    Phillips, F. A.; Wiedemann, S. G.; Naylor, T. A.; McGahan, E. J.; Warren, B. R.; Murphy, C. M.; Parkes, Stephen; Wilson, J.

    2016-01-01

    Mitigation of agricultural greenhouse gas emissions is a target area for the Australian Government and the pork industry. The present study measured methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and ammonia (NH3) from a deep-litter piggery and litter stockpile over two trials in southern New South Wales, to compare emissions from housing pigs on deep litter with those of pigs from conventional housing with uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment ponds. Emissions were measured using open-path Fourier transform infrared spectrometry, in conjunction with a backward Lagrangian stochastic model. Manure excretion was determined by mass balance and emission factors (EFs) were developed to report emissions relative to volatile solids and nitrogen (N) input. Nitrous oxide emissions per animal unit (1 AU ≤ 500 kg liveweight) from deep-litter sheds were negligible in winter, and 8.4 g/AU.day in summer. Ammonia emissions were 39.1 in winter and 52.2 g/AU.day in summer, while CH4 emissions were 16.1 and 21.6 g/AU.day in winter and summer respectively. Emission factors averaged from summer and winter emissions showed a CH4 conversion factor of 3.6%, an NH3-N EF of 10% and a N2O-N EF of 0.01 kg N2O-N/kg N excreted. For the litter stockpile, the simple average of summer and winter showed an EF for NH3-N of 14%, and a N2O-N EF of 0.02 kg N2O-N/kg-N of spent litter added to the stockpile. We observed a 66% and 80% decrease in emissions from the manure excreted in litter-based housing with litter stockpiling or without litter stockpiling, compared with conventional housing with an uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment pond. This provides a sound basis for mitigation strategies that utilise litter-based housing as an alternative to conventional housing with uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment ponds. © CSIRO 2016.

  15. Methane, nitrous oxide and ammonia emissions from pigs housed on litter and from stockpiling of spent litter

    KAUST Repository

    Phillips, F. A.

    2016-05-05

    Mitigation of agricultural greenhouse gas emissions is a target area for the Australian Government and the pork industry. The present study measured methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and ammonia (NH3) from a deep-litter piggery and litter stockpile over two trials in southern New South Wales, to compare emissions from housing pigs on deep litter with those of pigs from conventional housing with uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment ponds. Emissions were measured using open-path Fourier transform infrared spectrometry, in conjunction with a backward Lagrangian stochastic model. Manure excretion was determined by mass balance and emission factors (EFs) were developed to report emissions relative to volatile solids and nitrogen (N) input. Nitrous oxide emissions per animal unit (1 AU ≤ 500 kg liveweight) from deep-litter sheds were negligible in winter, and 8.4 g/AU.day in summer. Ammonia emissions were 39.1 in winter and 52.2 g/AU.day in summer, while CH4 emissions were 16.1 and 21.6 g/AU.day in winter and summer respectively. Emission factors averaged from summer and winter emissions showed a CH4 conversion factor of 3.6%, an NH3-N EF of 10% and a N2O-N EF of 0.01 kg N2O-N/kg N excreted. For the litter stockpile, the simple average of summer and winter showed an EF for NH3-N of 14%, and a N2O-N EF of 0.02 kg N2O-N/kg-N of spent litter added to the stockpile. We observed a 66% and 80% decrease in emissions from the manure excreted in litter-based housing with litter stockpiling or without litter stockpiling, compared with conventional housing with an uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment pond. This provides a sound basis for mitigation strategies that utilise litter-based housing as an alternative to conventional housing with uncovered anaerobic effluent-treatment ponds. © CSIRO 2016.

  16. Notes on Alien Bromus Grasses in Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming-Jer Jung

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Bromus carinatus Hook. & Arn., Bromus hordeaceus L., Bromus pubescens Muhl. ex Willd. and Bromus secalinus L. were recently found at middle elevations of southern and central Taiwan, respectively. We present taxonomic treatments, distribution map, and line-drawings of these introduced alien brome grasses.

  17. Notes on the nomenclature of some grasses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Henrard, J.Th.

    1941-01-01

    In a former article 1) many new combinations and critical observations were published on various grasses all over the world. New investigations in critical genera together with the study of the existing literature made it necessary to accept various other arrangements in this important family. The

  18. Grass Pollen Pollution from Biofuels Farming

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ratajová, A.; Tříska, Jan; Vrchotová, Naděžda; Kolář, L.; Kužel, S.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 26, č. 4 (2013), s. 199-203 ISSN 2151-321X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : grass pollen pollution * biofuels farming * temperate climate * PK-fertilization * N-fertilization * phenolic Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.556, year: 2013

  19. Germination of Themeda triandra (Kangaroo grass) as affected by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Low rainfall in range areas restricts germination, growth and development of majority of range grasses. However, germination and establishment potential of forage grasses vary and depends on environmental conditions. Themeda triandra is an excellent known grass to grow under different environmental conditions.

  20. Convex relationships in ecosystems containing mixtures of trees and grass

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between grass production and the quantity of trees in mixed tree-grass ecosystems (savannas) is convex for all or most of its range. In other words, the grass production declines more steeply per unit increase in tree quantity...

  1. Names of Southern African grasses: Name changes and additional ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The main reasons for changes in botanical names are briefly reviewed, with examples from the lists. At this time, about 1040 grass species and subspecific taxa are recognized in the subcontinent. Keywords: botanical research; botanical research institute; botany; grass; grasses; identification; name change; nomenclature; ...

  2. Above and belowground controls on litter decomposition in semiarid ecosystems: effects of solar radiation, water availability and litter quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austin, A. T.; Araujo, P. I.; Leva, P. E.; Ballare, C. L.

    2008-12-01

    The integrated controls on soil organic matter formation in arid and semiarid ecosystems are not well understood and appear to stem from a number of interacting controls affecting above- and belowground carbon turnover. While solar radiation has recently been shown to have an important direct effect on carbon loss in semiarid ecosystems as a result of photochemical mineralization of aboveground plant material, the mechanistic basis for photodegradative losses is poorly understood. In addition, there are large potential differences in major controls on above- and belowground decomposition in low rainfall ecosystems. We report on a mesocosm and field study designed to examine the relative importance of different wavelengths of solar radiation, water availability, position of senescent material above- and belowground and the importance of carbon litter quality in determining rates of abiotic and biotic decomposition. In a factorial experiment of mesocosms, we incubated leaf and root litter simultaneously above- and belowground and manipulated water availability with large and small pulses. Significant interactions between position-litter type and position-pulse sizes demonstrated interactive controls on organic mass loss. Aboveground decomposition showed no response to pulse size or litter type, as roots and leaves decomposed equally rapidly under all circumstances. In contrast, belowground decomposition was significantly altered by litter type and water pulses, with roots decomposing significantly slower and small water pulses reducing belowground decomposition. In the field site, using plastic filters which attenuated different wavelengths of natural solar radiation, we found a highly significant effect of radiation exclusion on mass loss and demonstrated that both UV-A and short-wave visible light can have important impacts on photodegradative carbon losses. The combination of position and litter quality effects on litter decomposition appear to be critical for the

  3. Combustion of poultry litter in a fluidised bed combustor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    P. Abelha; I. Gulyurtlu; D. Boavida; J. Seabra Barros; I. Cabrita; J. Leahy; B. Kelleher; M. Leahy [DEECA-INETI, Lisbon (Portugal)

    2003-04-01

    Combustion studies of poultry litter alone or mixed with peat by 50% on weight basis were undertaken in an atmospheric bubbling fluidised bed. Because of high moisture content of poultry litter, there was some uncertainty whether the combustion could be sustained on 100% poultry litter and as peat is very available in Ireland, its presence was considered to help to improve the combustion. However, the results showed that, as long as the moisture content of poultry litter was kept below 25%, the combustion did not need the addition of peat. The main parameters that were investigated are (i) moisture content, (ii) air staging, and (iii) variations in excess air levels along the freeboard. The main conclusions of the results are (i) combustion was influenced very much by the conditions of the fuel supply, (ii) the steady fuel supply was strongly dependent on the moisture content of the poultry litter, (iii) temperature appeared to be still very influential in reducing the levels of unburned carbon and hydrocarbons released from residues, (iv) the air staging in the freeboard improved combustion efficiency by enhancing the combustion of volatiles released from residues in the riser and (vi) NOx emissions were influenced by air staging in the freeboard. Particles collected from the bed and the two cyclones were analysed to determine the levels of heavy metals and the leachability tests were carried out with ashes collected to verify whether or not they could safely be used in agricultural lands. 8 refs., 1 fig., 8 tabs.

  4. Quality of poultry litter-derived granular activated carbon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Guannan; Guo, Mingxin

    2010-01-01

    Utilization of poultry litter as a source material for generating activated carbon is a value-added and environmentally beneficial approach to recycling organic waste. In this study, the overall quality of poultry litter-derived granular activated carbon was systematically evaluated based on its various physical and chemical properties. Granular activated carbon generated from pelletized poultry litter following a typical steam-activation procedure possessed numerous micropores in the matrix. The product exhibited a mean particle diameter of 2.59 mm, an apparent density of 0.45 g cm(-3), a ball-pan hardness of 91.0, an iodine number of 454 mg g(-1), and a BET surface area of 403 m(2) g(-1). It contained high ash, nitrogen, phosphorus contents and the trace elements Cu, Zn, and As. Most of the nutrients and toxic elements were solidified and solution-unextractable. In general, poultry litter-based activated carbon demonstrated overall quality comparable to that of low-grade commercial activated carbon derived from coconut shell and bituminous coal. It is promising to use poultry litter as a feedstock to manufacture activated carbon for wastewater treatment.

  5. Role of arthropod communities in bioenergy crop litter decomposition†.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zangerl, Arthur R; Miresmailli, Saber; Nabity, Paul; Lawrance, Allen; Yanahan, Alan; Mitchell, Corey A; Anderson-Teixeira, Kristina J; David, Mark B; Berenbaum, May R; DeLucia, Evan H

    2013-10-01

    The extensive land use conversion expected to occur to meet demands for bioenergy feedstock production will likely have widespread impacts on agroecosystem biodiversity and ecosystem services, including carbon sequestration. Although arthropod detritivores are known to contribute to litter decomposition and thus energy flow and nutrient cycling in many plant communities, their importance in bioenergy feedstock communities has not yet been assessed. We undertook an experimental study quantifying rates of litter mass loss and nutrient cycling in the presence and absence of these organisms in three bioenergy feedstock crops-miscanthus (Miscanthus x giganteus), switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), and a planted prairie community. Overall arthropod abundance and litter decomposition rates were similar in all three communities. Despite effective reduction of arthropods in experimental plots via insecticide application, litter decomposition rates, inorganic nitrogen leaching, and carbon-nitrogen ratios did not differ significantly between control (with arthropods) and treatment (without arthropods) plots in any of the three community types. Our findings suggest that changes in arthropod faunal composition associated with widespread adoption of bioenergy feedstock crops may not be associated with profoundly altered arthropod-mediated litter decomposition and nutrient release. © 2012 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  6. Lost fishing gear and litter at Gorringe Bank (NE Atlantic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, Rui P.; Raposo, Isabel P.; Sobral, Paula; Gonçalves, Jorge M. S.; Bell, Katherine L. C.; Cunha, Marina R.

    2015-06-01

    Studies concerning marine litter have received great attention over the last several years by the scientific community mainly due to their ecological and economic impacts in marine ecosystems, from coastal waters to the deep ocean seafloor. The distribution, type and abundance of marine litter in Ormonde and Gettysburg, the two seamounts of Gorringe Bank, were analyzed from photo and video imagery obtained during ROV-based surveys carried out at 60-3015 m depths during the E/V Nautilus cruise NA017. Located approximately 125 nm southwest of Portugal, Gorringe Bank lays at the crossroad between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean and is therefore characterized by an intense maritime traffic and fishing activities. The high frequency of lost or discarded fishing gear, such as cables, longlines and nets, observed on Gorringe Bank suggests an origin mostly from fishing activities, with a clear turnover in the type of litter (mostly metal, glass and to a much lesser extent, plastic) with increasing depth. Litter was more abundant at the summit of Gorringe Bank (ca. 4 items·km- 1), decreasing to less than 1 item·km- 1 at the flanks and to ca. 2 items·km- 1 at greater depths. Nevertheless, litter abundance appeared to be lower than in continental margin areas. The results presented herein are a contribution to support further actions for the conservation of vulnerable habitats on Gorringe Bank so that they can continue contributing to fishery productivity in the surrounding region.

  7. Nitrogen Transformations in Broiler Litter-Amended Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kokoasse Kpomblekou-A

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Nitrogen mineralization rates in ten surface soils amended with (200 μg N g−1 soil or without broiler litter were investigated. The soil-broiler litter mixture was incubated at 25±1∘C for 28 weeks. A nonlinear regression approach for N mineralization was used to estimate the readily mineralizable organic N pools (N0 and the first-order rate constant (k. The cumulative N mineralized in the nonamended soils did not exceed 80 mg N kg−1 soil. However, in Decatur soil amended with broiler litter 2, it exceeded 320 mg N kg−1 soil. The greatest calculated N0 of the native soils was observed in Sucarnoochee soil alone (123 mg NO3− kg−1 soil which when amended with broiler litter 1 reached 596 mg N kg−1 soil. The added broiler litter mineralized initially at a fast rate (k1 followed by a slow rate (k2 of the most resistant fraction. Half-life of organic N remaining in the soils alone varied from 33 to 75 weeks and from 43 to 15 weeks in the amended soils. When N0 was regressed against soil organic N (=0.782∗∗ and C (=0.884∗∗∗, positive linear relationships were obtained. The N0 pools increased with sand but decreased with silt and clay contents.

  8. DECOTAB: a multipurpose standard substrate to assess effects of litter quality on microbial decomposition and invertebrate consumption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kampfraath, A.A.; Hunting, E.R.; Mulder, C.; Breure, A.M.; Gessner, M.O.; Kraak, M.H.S.; Admiraal, W.

    2012-01-01

    Currently available tools for studying plant litter decomposition and invertebrate consumption in aquatic ecosystems have at least 2 major limitations: 1) the difficulty of manipulating litter chemical composition to provide mechanistic insights into attributes of litter quality controlling

  9. Estimating grass and grass silage degradation characteristics by in situ and in vitro gas production methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danijel Karolyi

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Fermentation characteristics of grass and grass silage at different maturities were studied using in situ and in vitro gas production methods. In situ data determined difference between grass and silage. Degradable fraction decreased as grass matured while the undegradable fraction increased. Rate of degradation (kd was slower for silage than fresh grass. Gas production method (GP data showed that fermentation of degradable fraction was different between stage of maturity in both grass and silage. Other data did not show any difference with the exception for the rate of GP of soluble and undegradable fraction. The in situ degradation characteristics were estimated from GP characteristics. The degradable and undegradable fractions could be estimated by multiple relationships. Using the three-phases model for gas production kd and fermentable organic matter could be estimated from the same parameters. The only in situ parameter that could not be estimated with GP parameters was the soluble fraction. The GP method and the three phases model provided to be an alternative to the in situ method for animal feed evaluations.

  10. Metal and nutrient dynamics in decomposing tree litter on a metal contaminated site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Nevel, Lotte; Mertens, Jan; Demey, Andreas; De Schrijver, An; De Neve, Stefaan; Tack, Filip M.G.; Verheyen, Kris

    2014-01-01

    In a forest on sandy, metal polluted soil, we examined effects of six tree species on litter decomposition rates and accompanied changes in metal (Cd, Zn) and nutrient (base cations, N, C) amounts. Decomposition dynamics were studied by means of a litterbag experiment lasting for 30 months. The decomposition peak occurred within the first year for all tree species, except for aspen. During litter decomposition, high metal litter types released part of their accumulated metals, whereas low metal litter types were characterized by a metal enrichment. Base cations, N and C were released from all litter types. Metal release from contaminated litter might involve risks for metal dispersion towards the soil. On the other hand, metal enrichment of uncontaminated litter may be ecologically relevant as it can be easily transported or serve as food source. - Highlights: • Litter decomposition peak occurred within the first year for all tree species, except for aspen. • Base cations, N and C were released from all litter types during decomposition. • Cd and Zn were released from the high metal litter types. • Low metal litter types were characterized by a net Cd and Zn enrichment. • Metal and nutrient releases were reflected in topsoil characteristics. - Litter decomposition rates, as well as enrichment and release dynamics of metals and nutrients in decomposing litter were divergent under the different tree species

  11. Grass pollen immunotherapy induces highly cross-reactive IgG antibodies to group V allergen from different grass species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Ree, R.; Brewczyński, P. Z.; Tan, K. Y.; Mulder-Willems, H. J.; Widjaja, P.; Stapel, S. O.; Aalberse, R. C.; Kroon, A. M.

    1995-01-01

    Sera from two groups of patients receiving grass pollen immunotherapy were tested on IgG reactivity with group V allergen from six different grass species. One group of patients was treated with a mixture of 10 grass species, and the other with a mixture of five. Only Lolium perenne, Dactylis

  12. Heavy metal concentrations in forest litter - indicators of pollutant depositions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angehrn-Bettinazzi, C.; Hertz, J.

    1990-01-01

    By means of a comparison of the heavy metal concentrations in organic litter from different sites it was examined to what extent the heavy metal concentrations correlate with the atmospheric pollution situation. It follows from the variance analyses: The atmospheric pollution situation is the dominating factor for the heavy metal concentration in L litter. The elements Cd and Zn show a pH-sensitivity at the same time. The lead concentration in the L n and L v horizons reflects the atmospheric pollution situation of the corresponding site. Specific pollution patterns, e.g. in the case of hillside sites, are neither detected through the gravitational deposition (open land) nor through the airborne dust concentration; these can be recognized by the monitor 'litter'. Only horizons in the intercrown area with identical tree vegetation, which are characterized in detail, must be used for monitoring. (orig.) [de

  13. Measurement and characterization of cellulase activity in sclerophyllous forest litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Criquet, Stéven

    2002-07-01

    Cellulases are enzymatic proteins which hydrolyze cellulose polymers to smaller oligosaccharides, cellobiose and glucose. They consist in three major types of enzymes: endoglucanases (EC 3.2.1.4), cellobiohydrolases (EC 3.2.1.91) and beta-glucosidases (EC 3.2.1.21) which play an essential role in carbon turnover of forest ecosystem. The aim of this study was firstly to determine the parameters (i.e. buffer type, pH, temperature, quantity of litter, incubation time and reagent type) which affect the measurement of cellulase activity in a sclerophyllous forest litter, and secondly to compare two methods for measuring cellulase activity: a direct method and an extraction method. In the direct method, the litter was directly incubated with a buffered solution containing the enzyme substrate, whereas in the extraction method, the cellulases were firstly extracted before measuring their activity. The results were compared with other studies about soil cellulase activity, and it appeared that several parameters (buffer type, pH, temperature and sample quantity) which influence the measurement of cellulase activity differ according to whether a soil or a litter is considered. Concerning the procedure used for the measurement of cellulase activity, results showed that the activity values were higher when using an extraction procedure than when using a direct procedure. The extraction procedure, combined with a concentration stage of the extract, also allowed electrophoretic analysis (PAGE) of the cellulases extracted from the litter. The electrophoretic pattern revealed two cellulase isoenzymes which may be related to the occurrence of two pH-activity peaks of these enzymes when citrate buffer was used for the measurement of cellulase activity in the litter.

  14. Decoupling of lignin and total litter decomposition across North American forest soils: a phenomenon to reconcile old and new paradigms of soil organic matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, S. J.; Hammel, K.

    2017-12-01

    An "old" paradigm of soil organic matter (SOM) posited that biochemically "recalcitrant" lignin derivatives were a dominant constituent. Over the past decade(s), evidence for a newer paradigm has emerged which suggests that recalcitrance has little long-term impact on the biochemical composition of SOM, and that lignin is relatively unimportant in comparison with dead microbial biomass. Yet, methodological biases have hampered accurate quantification of lignin dynamics in mineral soils, and may have led to systematic underestimates of lignin stocks and turnover. Here, we sought to test this aspect of the "new" SOM paradigm. Synthetic position-specific 13C-labeled lignins provide a robust quantitative method to track the mineralization and fate of lignin moieties in mineral soils. Relatively few microbial taxa are known to depolymerize macromolecular lignin, and lignin derivatives can specifically associate with iron oxide mineral phases. Consequently, we hypothesized that decomposition of lignin is poorly correlated with total litter decomposition across ecosystems, and that lignin may represent a variable but significant component of decadal-cycling SOM. We incubated 10 forest soils spanning diverse North American ecosystems over seven months under laboratory conditions at constant temperature and moisture. Soils were incubated alone, with added C4 grass litter and natural isotope abundance lignin, and with added C4 litter and 13Cß-labeled lignin. These treatments allowed us to partition respiration for each soil from SOM, litter, and the Cß moiety of lignin—which is diagnostic for cleavage of the polymer. Consistent with our hypothesis, we found much greater variability (ten-fold) in cumulative lignin mineralization relative to bulk litter (two-fold) among soils. Multiple-pool first-order decay models implied that mean turnover times for lignin ranged from one to several decades among soils, relative to several years for bulk litter. Our results suggest a

  15. LBA-ECO ND-11 Litter Decomposition, Carbon, and Nitrogen Dynamics in Agroforestry

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains the results of an experiment to determine litter decomposition and dynamics of carbon and nitrogen release from plant litter of differing...

  16. Microhabitat effects of litter temperature and moisture on forest-floor invertebrate communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tim A. Christiansen; Sue A. Perry; William B. Perry

    1996-01-01

    Litter temperature and moisture may be altered due to changes in global climate. We investigated the effect of small changes in litter temperature and moisture on forest-floor communities in West Virginia.

  17. LBA-ECO ND-11 Litter Decomposition, Carbon, and Nitrogen Dynamics in Agroforestry

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set contains the results of an experiment to determine litter decomposition and dynamics of carbon and nitrogen release from plant litter of...

  18. Meiofaunal Responses to Leaf Litter Added to Azoic Sediments in a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ANOVA revealed a significant (p <0.05) litter source effect between ... marine benthic systems and supports a high ... Western Indian Ocean J. Mar. ... leaf litter for various invertebrate groups that .... increasing the acidity of the plant material,.

  19. A test of the hierarchical model of litter decomposition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bradford, Mark A.; Veen, G. F.; Bonis, Anne

    2017-01-01

    Our basic understanding of plant litter decomposition informs the assumptions underlying widely applied soil biogeochemical models, including those embedded in Earth system models. Confidence in projected carbon cycle-climate feedbacks therefore depends on accurate knowledge about the controls...... regulating the rate at which plant biomass is decomposed into products such as CO2. Here we test underlying assumptions of the dominant conceptual model of litter decomposition. The model posits that a primary control on the rate of decomposition at regional to global scales is climate (temperature...

  20. Nowcasting daily minimum air and grass temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savage, M. J.

    2016-02-01

    Site-specific and accurate prediction of daily minimum air and grass temperatures, made available online several hours before their occurrence, would be of significant benefit to several economic sectors and for planning human activities. Site-specific and reasonably accurate nowcasts of daily minimum temperature several hours before its occurrence, using measured sub-hourly temperatures hours earlier in the morning as model inputs, was investigated. Various temperature models were tested for their ability to accurately nowcast daily minimum temperatures 2 or 4 h before sunrise. Temperature datasets used for the model nowcasts included sub-hourly grass and grass-surface (infrared) temperatures from one location in South Africa and air temperature from four subtropical sites varying in altitude (USA and South Africa) and from one site in central sub-Saharan Africa. Nowcast models used employed either exponential or square root functions to describe the rate of nighttime temperature decrease but inverted so as to determine the minimum temperature. The models were also applied in near real-time using an open web-based system to display the nowcasts. Extrapolation algorithms for the site-specific nowcasts were also implemented in a datalogger in an innovative and mathematically consistent manner. Comparison of model 1 (exponential) nowcasts vs measured daily minima air temperatures yielded root mean square errors (RMSEs) <1 °C for the 2-h ahead nowcasts. Model 2 (also exponential), for which a constant model coefficient ( b = 2.2) was used, was usually slightly less accurate but still with RMSEs <1 °C. Use of model 3 (square root) yielded increased RMSEs for the 2-h ahead comparisons between nowcasted and measured daily minima air temperature, increasing to 1.4 °C for some sites. For all sites for all models, the comparisons for the 4-h ahead air temperature nowcasts generally yielded increased RMSEs, <2.1 °C. Comparisons for all model nowcasts of the daily grass

  1. Effects of dietary coarsely ground corn and litter type on broiler live performance, litter characteristics, gastrointestinal tract development, apparent ileal digestibility of energy and nitrogen, and intestinal morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Y; Stark, C R; Ferket, P R; Williams, C M; Auttawong, S; Brake, J

    2015-03-01

    The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effects of the dietary inclusion of 2 coarsely ground corn (CC) levels (0 or 50%) in diets of broilers reared on 2 litter types (new wood shavings or used litter) on live performance, litter characteristics, gastrointestinal tract (GIT) development, apparent ileal digestibility (AID) of energy and nitrogen (N), and intestinal morphology. No interaction effects between CC level and litter type were observed on live performance. No litter effect was observed on live performance. Dietary inclusion of 50% CC increased BW at 35 d (Plitter treatment (litter N) increased absolute and relative proventriculus weight (Plitter type was observed for litter N, where the 50% CC treatment reduced litter N regardless of litter type (Plitter N was reduced by new litter only among birds fed 0% CC (Plitter pH (Plitter increased jejunum villi and ileum villi height (PLitter type affected some GIT traits and functions but did not affect live performance. © 2015 Poultry Science Association Inc.

  2. Influence of in-house composting of reused litter on litter quality, ammonia volatilisation and incidence of broiler foot pad dermatitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martins, R S; Hötzel, M J; Poletto, R

    2013-01-01

    1. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the residual effects of two windrow composting methods for reused litter on its quality (pH, moisture, ammonia), ammonia (NH3) volatilisation and the prevalence (scores 0-4) of foot pad dermatitis (FPD) and hock burn (HB) on d 1, 7, 14 and 21 of age in broilers. Litter was allowed to compost for 8 d within a 14-d interval between flocks. 2. The composting methods studied were with or without a PVC plastic sheet. The same procedures were applied for three consecutive flocks, with litter initially having been used for 12 flocks. Data were analysed with a mixed model of repeated measures of day, with main effects and interactions of day, composting method, litter age (block) and house nested within method. 3. At d 1, litter NH3 and NH3 volatilisation were higher in the covered litter method. Litter moisture increased to 45.3% as broilers aged. The incidence of FPD also increased with age. No signs of HB were found in any bird throughout the trials. 4. There was no effect of litter composting methods on the prevalence of FPD or body weight at any age. 5. Litter moisture should be controlled to avoid NH3 volatilisation reaching critical levels. Windrow composting of litter with a PVC plastic sheet may not be required when considering the broiler housing environment.

  3. Performance and nutrient intake of Zebu Heifers fed guinea grass ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sixteen zebu heifors were ted 0. 20. 40 and 60% autoclaved broiler litter in total mixed rations. The effect of treatment was evaluated on feed intake. mean growth rate. digestibility coetlicient and digestible nutrient intake. Autoclaved broiler litter appeared to be well accepted by heiters even when included in ration at 60% of ...

  4. The Effect of the Litter Materials on Broiler Chickens Welfare and Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serpil Gençoğlan

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study is to review the quality and types of the litter material and its effect on the welfare and performance of the broiler chickens. Since the most suitable broiler rearing system is on the littered floor, the litter material is of great importance. Demand for litter material is also increasing, depending on the development in broiler production. Straws, wood shavings, and sawdust are widely used as litters material. Beside these, materials such as wheat, barley, rye, oats, sunflower, rice, hazelnut, maize, soya, peanut, cotton and sugarcane are used purely or mixed as a litters material. The quality of the litter is determined with the litter moisture, pH, ammonium nitrate content, caking level and water holding capacity. The ideal litter material should have a moisture content of 20-25%, a pH of 8-10, and ammonia content should not exceed 25 ppm. The thickness of the litter changes between 2 and 10 cm according to the type of the litter, and size of it should not exceed 0.6 cm. Increase in the litter moisture increases pH, NH3 concentration and caking. The type of litter material effects on the performance, welfare, health, behavior and product quality of broiler chickens. In addition, there are negative effects of litter materials on carcass defects, foot-leg problems, breast blisters or bruises, decrease in living power, and increase of microorganism development due to litter moisture, increase of gas and dust formation in poultry. These adverse effects cause large economic losses in intensive enterprises. For this reason, the quality and type of litter material is very important in broiler rearing.

  5. The use of refused tea as litter material for broiler chickens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atapattu, N S B M; Wickramasinghe, K P

    2007-05-01

    A completely randomized design experiment was conducted to determine the suitability of refused tea (RT) as a litter material for broiler chickens. Physiochemical properties of RT were compared with paddy husk (PH). Subsequently, broilers were raised on RT- or PH-based litter to compare the performances and litter qualities. Twenty-day-old broiler chicks (n = 150) were randomly allocated into 6 deep litter pens so that each treatment had 3 replicates. Chicks received 0.8 ft(2) of floor spacing until d 28 and 1.3 ft(2) thereafter. Each cage had a feeder and a drinker. Litter materials and litter samples taken on 28, 35, and 39 d were analyzed for bulk density, moisture, ash, and N. Chick mortality was low (1.3%) and similar on 2 types of litters. Live weights on d 28, 35, 39, and weight gains, feed intakes, dressing percentages, and feed conversion ratios were not affected by the type of litter material. The bulk density, moisture level, and pH of the RT were comparable with PH. Even though the water-holding capacity of PH (213%) was significantly higher (P litter had around 10% units higher moisture level than PH litter. By d 39, the moisture content of the RT litter was (48%) significantly higher (P = 0.05) than PH litter (37%). The N contents of RT litter were higher (P litter material for broilers. A higher N content in RT-based spent broiler litter would make it be a better organic fertilizer and ruminant feed compared with PH-based litter.

  6. Interrelations between the Microbiotas in the Litter and in the Intestines of Commercial Broiler Chickens ▿

    OpenAIRE

    Cressman, Michael D.; Yu, Zhongtang; Nelson, Michael C.; Moeller, Steven J.; Lilburn, Michael S.; Zerby, Henry N.

    2010-01-01

    The intestinal microbiota of broiler chickens and the microbiota in the litter have been well studied, but the interactions between these two microbiotas remain to be determined. Therefore, we examined their reciprocal effects by analyzing the intestinal microbiotas of broilers reared on fresh pine shavings versus reused litter, as well as the litter microbiota over a 6-week cycle. Composite ileal mucosal and cecal luminal samples from birds (n = 10) reared with both litter conditions (fresh ...

  7. Potential for post-closure radionuclide redistribution due to biotic intrusion: aboveground biomass, litter production rates, and the distribution of root mass with depth at material disposal area G, Los Alamos National Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    French, Sean B.; Christensen, Candace; Jennings, Terry L.; Jaros, Christopher L.; Wykoff, David S.; Crowell, Kelly J.; Shuman, Rob

    2008-01-01

    Low-level radioactive waste (LLW) generated at the Los Alamos National Laboratories (LANL) is disposed of at LANL's Technical Area (T A) 54, Material Disposal Area (MDA) G. The ability of MDA G to safely contain radioactive waste during current and post-closure operations is evaluated as part of the facility's ongoing performance assessment (PA) and composite analysis (CA). Due to the potential for uptake and incorporation of radio nuclides into aboveground plant material, the PA and CA project that plant roots penetrating into buried waste may lead to releases of radionuclides into the accessible environment. The potential amount ofcontamination deposited on the ground surface due to plant intrusion into buried waste is a function of the quantity of litter generated by plants, as well as radionuclide concentrations within the litter. Radionuclide concentrations in plant litter is dependent on the distribution of root mass with depth and the efficiency with which radionuclides are extracted from contaminated soils by the plant's roots. In order to reduce uncertainties associated with the PA and CA for MDA G, surveys are being conducted to assess aboveground biomass, plant litter production rates, and root mass with depth for the four prominent vegetation types (grasses, forbs, shrubs and trees). The collection of aboveground biomass for grasses and forbs began in 2007. Additional sampling was conducted in October 2008 to measure root mass with depth and to collect additional aboveground biomass data for the types of grasses, forbs, shrubs, and trees that may become established at MDA G after the facility undergoes final closure, Biomass data will be used to estimate the future potential mass of contaminated plant litter fall, which could act as a latent conduit for radionuclide transport from the closed disposal area. Data collected are expected to reduce uncertainties associated with the PA and CA for MDA G and ultimately aid in the assessment and subsequent

  8. Are nitrate exports in stream water linked to nitrogen fluxes in decomposing foliar litter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kathryn B. Piatek; Mary Beth. Adams

    2011-01-01

    The central hardwood forest receives some of the highest rates of atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition, which results in nitrate leaching to surface waters. Immobilization of N in foliar litter during litter decomposition represents a potential mechanism for temporal retention of atmospherically deposited N in forest ecosystems. When litter N dynamics switch to the N-...

  9. The use of beached bird surveys for marine plastic litter monitoring in Ireland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Acampora, Heidi; Lyashevska, Olga; Franeker, van J.A.; O'Connor, I.

    2016-01-01

    Marine plastic litter has become a major threat to wildlife. Marine animals are highly susceptible to entanglement and ingestion of debris at sea. Governments all around the world are being urged to monitor litter sources and inputs, and to mitigate the impacts of marine litter, which is primarily

  10. Broiler excreta composition and its effect on wet litter : aspects of nutrition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoeven-Hangoor, van der E.

    2014-01-01

    In commercial broiler farms, birds are usually housed on litter, composed of bedding materials like wood shavings. Wet litter is a condition in which the litter reaches its saturation threshold for water and cannot hold more moisture. It causes increased microbial activity and, as a result,

  11. Composting and gypsum amendment of broiler litter to reduce nutrient leaching loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Relative to fresh broiler litter, little is known about the dynamics of composted litter derived-nutrient in the ecosystem. In this study, the potential leaching losses of nutrients from compost relative to fresh broiler litter along with flue gas desulfurization (FGD gypsum), as a nutrient immobil...

  12. Prevention of littering through packaging design : A support tool for concept generation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wever, R.; Gutter, N.; Silvester, S.

    2006-01-01

    Littering is a social and environmental problem. Numerous studies have been performed trying to understand littering behavior and to find ways to influence it successfully. Various litter-reduction strategies have been applied with changing success. These have either focused on directly influencing

  13. Highly consistent effects of plant litter identity and functional traits on decomposition across a latitudinal gradient

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Makkonen, M.; Berg, M.P.; Handa, I.T.; Hättenschwiler, S.; Ruijven, van J.; Bodegom, van P.M.; Aerts, M.A.P.A.

    2012-01-01

    Plant litter decomposition is a key process in terrestrial carbon cycling, yet the relative importance of various control factors remains ambiguous at a global scale. A full reciprocal litter transplant study with 16 litter species that varied widely in traits and originated from four forest sites

  14. Does litter size affect emotionality, spatial learning and memory in piglets?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fijn, Lisa; Antonides, Alexandra; Aalderink, Dave; Nordquist, Rebecca E.; van der Staay, Franz Josef

    2016-01-01

    Average litter size has steadily increased over the past decades in the pig farming industry. Large litters are associated with an increase of piglets born with a lower birth weight and reduced overall piglet viability. The aim of our study was to investigate whether litter size affects

  15. Lead-210 and polonium-210 in grass

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hill, C R

    1960-07-16

    It appears that an important contribution to the observed ..cap alpha..-activity of grass may be provided by a process of natural fall-out in which lead-210 resulting from decay of atmospheric radon, together with a fraction of the equilibrium amount of its descendant polonium-210 are deposited by rainfall directly on to foliage. Metabolic uptake of part of this activity by sheep is indicated by the presence in the kidney of polonium-210. 6 references, 1 figure, 2 tables.

  16. Observations on litter size, parturition and maternal behaviour in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    offspring successfully, increasing attention is being focused ... Information was relayed by radio to a ... used to analyse litter mass at birth and rearing as well as length of .... sustained higher (P 0;;; 0.05) levels of mortality at birth than ewes, with ...

  17. Carcass characteristics and meat quality of rabbit litters from rabbit ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The effect of restricted feeding and realimentation during pregnancy was studied to know the carryover effect on carcass characteristics and meat quality of rabbit litters.Young does fed ad libitum diets often show parturition problems (Dystokia and abnormal presentation) with the subsequent reduction of number of kits, ...

  18. INTERACTION EFFECT OF TREE LEAF LITTER, MANURE AND

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Compound D (8N-l4P-7K) fertilizer (300 kg ha"), and their combinations on maize growth and yield on ... presence of fertilizer. It is hypothesised that the application of Leucaena, manure and miombo litter resulted in immobilisation of nutrients. Leucaena, which is rich in N but low in P, probably .... No lime was applied to the.

  19. Psycho-sociocultural Analysis of Attitude towards Littering in a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study examined the influence of altruism, environmental self-efficacy, locus of control, self-concept, age, gender, and level of education as predictors of attitude towards littering among residents of some selected communities in Ibadan metropolis. An ex-post cross-sectional research design was adopted for this study.

  20. Flammability of litter from southeastern trees: a preliminary assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. Morgan Varner; Jeffrey M. Kane; Erin M. Banwell; Jesse K. Kreye

    2015-01-01

    The southeastern United States possesses a great diversity of woody species and an equally impressive history of wildland fires. Species are known to vary in their flammability, but little is known about southeastern species. We used published data and our own collections to perform standard litter flammability tests on a diverse suite of 25 native overstory trees from...

  1. Screening of seven microsatellite markers for litter size in Xinong ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jane

    2011-08-08

    Aug 8, 2011 ... microsatellite loci. The number of effective alleles (Ne), polymorphism information content (PIC) and average heterozygosity (He) were the highest at OarFCB11 and the lowest at OarAE129 in Xinong. Saanen dairy goat. The analysis of the effect of the six polymorphisms microsatellite loci on the litter size of ...

  2. Predicting climate change impacts on polar bear litter size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnár, Péter K; Derocher, Andrew E; Klanjscek, Tin; Lewis, Mark A

    2011-02-08

    Predicting the ecological impacts of climate warming is critical for species conservation. Incorporating future warming into population models, however, is challenging because reproduction and survival cannot be measured for yet unobserved environmental conditions. In this study, we use mechanistic energy budget models and data obtainable under current conditions to predict polar bear litter size under future conditions. In western Hudson Bay, we predict climate warming-induced litter size declines that jeopardize population viability: ∼28% of pregnant females failed to reproduce for energetic reasons during the early 1990s, but 40-73% could fail if spring sea ice break-up occurs 1 month earlier than during the 1990s, and 55-100% if break-up occurs 2 months earlier. Simultaneously, mean litter size would decrease by 22-67% and 44-100%, respectively. The expected timeline for these declines varies with climate-model-specific sea ice predictions. Similar litter size declines may occur in over one-third of the global polar bear population.

  3. Incorporation of microplastics from litter into burrows of Lumbricus terrestris

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huerta Lwanga, Esperanza; Gertsen, H.F.; Gooren, H.; Peters, P.; Salanki, T.E.; Ploeg, van der M.; Besseling, E.; Koelmans, A.A.; Geissen, V.

    2017-01-01

    Pollution caused by plastic debris is an urgent environmental problem. Here, we assessed the effects of microplastics in the soil surface litter on the formation and characterization of burrows built by the anecic earthworm Lumbricus terrestris in soil and quantified the amount of microplastics that

  4. Influence of poultry litter and double cropping on soybean yield

    Science.gov (United States)

    Continuous cultivation of mono-cropping systems coupled with inorganic fertilizer consumption has led to a decline in soil fertility, negatively influencing crop yields. Poultry litter application and double cropping are two management practices that could be used with conservation tillage to increa...

  5. Effects of treated poultry litter on potential Greenhouse Gas ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study examined the effects of different treatments of poultry faecal matter on potential greenhouse gas emission and its field application. Poultry litters were randomly assigned to four treatments viz; salt solution, alum, air exclusion and the control (untreated). Alum treated faeces had higher (p<0.05) percentage nitrogen ...

  6. Functional leaf attributes predict litter decomposition rate in herbaceous plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cornelissen, J. H C; Thompson, K.

    1997-01-01

    We tested the hypothesis that functional attributes of living leaves provide a basis for predicting the decomposition rate of leaf litter. The data were obtained from standardized screening tests on 38 British herbaceous species. Graminoid monocots had physically tougher leaves with higher silicon

  7. Spatial variability of heating profiles in windrowed poultry litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    In-house windrow composting of broiler litter has been suggested as a means to reduce microbial populations between flocks. Published time-temperature goals are used to determine the success of the composting process for microbial reductions. Spatial and temporal density of temperature measurement ...

  8. Proportion of litters of purebred dogs born by caesarean section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Katy M; Adams, Vicki J

    2010-02-01

    To describe the frequency of caesarean sections in a large sample of pedigree dogs in the UK. Data on the numbers of litters born in the previous 10 years were available from a cross-sectional study of dogs belonging to breed club members (2004 Kennel Club/BSAVA Scientific Committee Purebred Dog Health Survey). In this survey 151 breeds were represented with data for households that had reported on at least 10 litters (range 10-14,15): this represented 13,141 bitches which had whelped 22,005 litters. The frequency of caesarean sections was estimated as the percentage of litters that were reported to be born by caesarean section (caesarean rates) and are reported by breed. The dogs were categorised into brachycephalic, mesocephalic and dolicocephalic breeds. The 10 breeds with the highest caesarean rates were the Boston terrier, bulldog, French bulldog, mastiff, Scottish terrier, miniature bull terrier, German wirehaired pointer, Clumber spaniel, Pekingese and Dandie Dinmont terrier. In the Boston terrier, bulldog and French bulldog, the rate was > 80%. These data provide evidence for the need to monitor caesarean rates in certain breeds of dog.

  9. Evaluation of Some Litter Traits and Heritability Estimates of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SH

    The heritability estimates were 0.00 ± 0.04 for litter size at weaning and. 0.37 ± 0.12 for ... not sustainable in South-western Nigeria. Balogun (1981) ... sources for the people that eat pork. Dalton ... size and on body weight at birth and at weaning of .... Indigenous and Large White Pigs in a humid tropical environment. Asian.

  10. Competition of Scleroconidioma sphagnicola with fungi decomposing spruce litter needles

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Koukol, Ondřej; Mrnka, Libor; Kulhánková, A.; Vosátka, Miroslav

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 84, - (2006), s. 469-476 ISSN 0008-4026 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/05/0269 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : litter needles * competition * agar pairing Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.193, year: 2006

  11. Evaluation of within-litter birth weight variation in piglets

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    VaZindove

    2014-03-23

    Mar 23, 2014 ... rates. Large weight variation at birth also requires the use of more pens, ... defined as the distribution of individual weights within a litter, has not been ..... the economic values of selection responses from the component traits ...

  12. Fungal community on decomposing leaf litter undergoes rapid successional changes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Voříšková, Jana; Baldrian, Petr

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 7, č. 3 (2013), s. 477-486 ISSN 1751-7362 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ME10152; GA MŠk LD12050; GA ČR GAP504/12/0709 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : fungi * litter decomposition * cellulose Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology , Virology Impact factor: 9.267, year: 2013

  13. Litter size, fur quality and genetic analyses of American mink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thirstrup, Janne Pia

    of the skin, have been analyzed. Both fur quality traits and litter size are complex traits underlying quantitative genetic variation. Methods for estimating genetic variance, spanning from pedigree information to the use of different genetic markers, have been utilized in order to gain knowledge about...

  14. Do traits of invasive species influence decomposition and soil respiration of disturbed ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, A. J.; Balster, N. J.

    2009-12-01

    Large-scale landscape disturbances typically alter the terrestrial carbon cycle leading to shifts in pools of soil carbon. Restoration of disturbed landscapes with prairie vegetation has thus been practiced with the intent of increasing carbon accrual in soils. However, since disturbed soils are prone to invasion by non-native invasive species, many ecological restorations have resulted in unexpected outcomes, which may be explained by differences in plant traits such as tissue quality and biomass allocation. Typically, the tissue of invasive species has lower C:N ratios relative to native species, and consequently, faster decomposition rates, which potentially can alter the balance in soil carbon. The primary objective of this research was to compare the effects of native prairie species versus non-native invasive species on the carbon cycling within a novel environment: a recently dewatered basin in southwestern Wisconsin following dam removal. We hypothesized that a higher invasive to native species ratio would result in faster litter decomposition and a higher rate of soil respiration. To test this hypothesis, we seeded newly exposed sediments with native prairie seeds in 2005, annually collected aboveground plant biomass (by species per plot), calculated decomposition rate of native and invasive litter (underneath both canopy types), and measured soil respiration during the growing season of 2009. After four years of seeding, the aboveground biomass of the native vegetation has increased significantly (p invasive species biomass has decreased from 459 to 296 g m-2. Senesced tissue from mixed native species had a higher C:N ratio, 27:1 (43% C: 1.6% N), than tissue from mixed invasive species, 24:1 (35% C: 1.5% N). However, after 7 months, we found that the rate of decomposition depended on both litter type and plant canopy type (p invasive plant tissue had a slightly faster decomposition rate than the native litter and this rate was elevated under invasive

  15. SOA Formation Potential of Emissions from Soil and Leaf Litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faiola, C. L.; Vanderschelden, G. S.; Wen, M.; Cobos, D. R.; Jobson, B. T.; VanReken, T. M.

    2013-12-01

    In the United States, emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from natural sources exceed all anthropogenic sources combined. VOCs participate in oxidative chemistry in the atmosphere and impact the concentrations of ozone and particulate material. The formation of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) is particularly complex and is frequently underestimated using state-of-the-art modeling techniques. We present findings that suggest emissions of important SOA precursors from soil and leaf litter are higher than current inventories would suggest, particularly under conditions typical of Fall and Spring. Soil and leaf litter samples were collected at Big Meadow Creek from the University of Idaho Experimental Forest. The dominant tree species in this area of the forest are ponderosa pine, Douglas-fir, and western larch. Samples were transported to the laboratory and housed within a 0.9 cubic meter Teflon dynamic chamber where VOC emissions were continuously monitored with a GC-FID-MS and PTR-MS. Aerosol was generated from soil and leaf litter emissions by pumping the emissions into a 7 cubic meter Teflon aerosol growth chamber where they were oxidized with ozone in the absence of light. The evolution of particle microphysical and chemical characteristics was monitored over the following eight hours. Particle size distribution and chemical composition were measured with a SMPS and HR-ToF-AMS respectively. Monoterpenes dominated the emission profile with emission rates up to 283 micrograms carbon per meter squared per hour. The dominant monoterpenes emitted were beta-pinene, alpha-pinene, and delta-3-carene in descending order. The composition of the SOA produced was similar to biogenic SOA formed from oxidation of ponderosa pine emissions and alpha-pinene. Measured soil/litter monoterpene emission rates were compared with modeled canopy emissions. Results suggest that during fall and spring when tree emissions are lower, monoterpene emissions within forests may be

  16. Interrelations between the microbiotas in the litter and in the intestines of commercial broiler chickens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cressman, Michael D; Yu, Zhongtang; Nelson, Michael C; Moeller, Steven J; Lilburn, Michael S; Zerby, Henry N

    2010-10-01

    The intestinal microbiota of broiler chickens and the microbiota in the litter have been well studied, but the interactions between these two microbiotas remain to be determined. Therefore, we examined their reciprocal effects by analyzing the intestinal microbiotas of broilers reared on fresh pine shavings versus reused litter, as well as the litter microbiota over a 6-week cycle. Composite ileal mucosal and cecal luminal samples from birds (n = 10) reared with both litter conditions (fresh versus reused) were collected at 7, 14, 21, and 42 days of age. Litter samples were also collected at days 7, 14, 21, and 42. The microbiotas were profiled and compared within sample types based on litter condition using PCR and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE). The microbiotas were further analyzed using 16S rRNA gene clone libraries constructed from microbiota DNA extracted from both chick intestinal and litter samples collected at day 7. Results showed significant reciprocal effects between the microbiotas present in the litter and those in the intestines of broilers. Fresh litter had more environmental bacteria, while reused litter contained more bacteria of intestinal origin. Lactobacillus spp. dominated the ileal mucosal microbiota of fresh-litter chicks, while a group of bacteria yet to be classified within Clostridiales dominated in the ileal mucosal microbiota in the reused-litter chicks. The Litter condition (fresh versus reused) seemed to have a more profound impact on the ileal microbiota than on the cecal microbiota. The data suggest that the influence of fresh litter on ileal microbiota decreased as broilers grew, compared with temporal changes observed under reused-litter rearing conditions.

  17. Influence of Soil Moisture on Litter Respiration in the Semiarid Loess Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yanjun; Guo, Shengli; Liu, Qingfang; Jiang, Jishao

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the response mechanisms of litter respiration to soil moisture in water-limited semi-arid regions is of vital importance to better understanding the interplay between ecological processes and the local carbon cycle. In situ soil respiration was monitored during 2010–2012 under various conditions (normal litter, no litter, and double litter treatments) in a 30-year-old artificial black locust plantation (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) on the Loess Plateau. Litter respiration with normal and double litter treatments exhibited similar seasonal variation, with the maximum value obtained in summer (0.57 and 1.51 μmol m−2 s−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively) and the minimum in spring (0.27 and 0.69 μmol m−2 s−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively). On average, annual cumulative litter respiration was 115 and 300 g C m−2 y−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively. Using a soil temperature of 17°C as the critical point, the relationship between litter respiration and soil moisture was found to follow quadratic functions well, whereas the determination coefficient was much greater at high soil temperature than at low soil temperature (33–35% vs. 22–24%). Litter respiration was significantly higher in 2010 and 2012 than in 2011 under both normal litter (132–165 g C m−2 y−1 vs. 48 g C m−2 y−1) and double litter (389–418 g C m−2 y−1 vs. 93 g C m−2 y−1) conditions. Such significant interannual variations were largely ascribed to the differences in summer rainfall. Our study demonstrates that, apart from soil temperature, moisture also has significant influence on litter respiration in semi-arid regions. PMID:25474633

  18. Urea Hydrolysis and Calcium Carbonate Precipitation in Gypsum-Amended Broiler Litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burt, Christopher D; Cabrera, Miguel L; Rothrock, Michael J; Kissel, D E

    2018-01-01

    Broiler () litter is subject to ammonia (NH) volatilization losses. Previous work has shown that the addition of gypsum to broiler litter can increase nitrogen mineralization and decrease NH losses due to a decrease in pH, but the mechanisms responsible for these effects are not well understood. Therefore, three laboratory studies were conducted to evaluate the effect of gypsum addition to broiler litter on (i) urease activity at three water contents, (ii) calcium carbonate precipitation, and (iii) pH. The addition of gypsum to broiler litter increased ammonium concentrations ( litter pH by 0.43 to 0.49 pH units after 5 d ( litter only increased on Day 0 for broiler litter with low (0.29 g HO g) and high (0.69 g HO g) water contents, and on Day 3 for litter with medium (0.40 g HO g) water content ( litter with gypsum also caused an immediate decrease in litter pH (0.22 pH units) due to the precipitation of calcium carbonate (CaCO) from gypsum-derived calcium and litter bicarbonate. Furthermore, as urea was hydrolyzed, more urea-derived carbon precipitated as CaCO in gypsum-treated litter than in untreated litter ( litter with gypsum favors the precipitation of CaCO, which buffers against increases in litter pH that are known to facilitate NH volatilization. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  19. Genetic parameters for litter size in Black Slavonian pigs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dubravko Skorput

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to estimate genetic parameters for litter size of Black Slavonian pigs using the repeatability, multiple trait, and random regression models, and to consider the possibility to increase litter size in Black Slavonian pigs by selection. A total of 4733 litter records from the first to the sixth parity from sows that farrowed between January 1998 and December 2010 were included in the analysis. Individual record consisted of the following variables: breeding organisation (eight regions, parity (1-6, service boar, and farrowing season (month-year interaction. Estimation of all the covariance components with three different models was based on the residual maximum likelihood method. Estimate of additive genetic variance and heritability for number of piglets born alive with repeatability model was 0.23 and 0.10, respectively. Estimates of additive genetic variance with multiple trait and random regression model were in a wider range from 0.05 to 0.65 across parities, and heritabilities were estimated in the range between 0.03 and 0.26. Estimates of phenotypic and additive genetic correlations were much smoother with random regression model in comparison with multiple trait model. Due to unexpected changes of variances along trajectory obtained with multiple trait and random regression model, the best option for genetic evaluation of litter size for now could be the use of repeatability model. With increasing number of data with proper data structure alternative modelling of litter size of Black Slavonian pig using multiple trait and random regression model could be taken into consideration.

  20. Genetic parameters for litter size in Black Slavonian pigs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Skorput, D.; Gorjanc, G.; Dikic, M.; Lujovic, Z.

    2014-06-01

    The objective of this study was to estimate genetic parameters for litter size of Black Slavonian pigs using the repeatability, multiple trait, and random regression models, and to consider the possibility to increase litter size in Black Slavonian pigs by selection. A total of 4,733 litter records from the first to the sixth parity from sows that farrowed between January 1998 and December 2010 were included in the analysis. Individual record consisted of the following variables: breeding organisation (eight regions), parity (1-6), service boar, and farrowing season (monthyear interaction). Estimation of all the covariance components with three different models was based on the residual maximum likelihood method. Estimate of additive genetic variance and heritability for number of piglets born alive with repeatability model was 0.23 and 0.10, respectively. Estimates of additive genetic variance with multiple trait and random regression model were in a wider range from 0.05 to 0.65 across parities, and heritabilities were estimated in the range between 0.03 and 0.26. Estimates of phenotypic and additive genetic correlations were much smoother with random regression model in comparison with multiple trait model. Due to unexpected changes of variances along trajectory obtained with multiple trait and random regression model, the best option for genetic evaluation of litter size for now could be the use of repeatability model. With increasing number of data with proper data structure alternative modelling of litter size of Black Slavonian pig using multiple trait and random regression model could be taken into consideration. (Author)

  1. Litter aeration and spread of Salmonella in broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodí, Sara González; Garcia, Arantxa Villagra; García, Santiago Vega; Orenga, Clara Marín

    2013-08-01

    Litter quality in the poultry sector is one of the main parameters of health, productivity, and animal welfare. Therefore, innovative management methods have been developed to improve the quality of litter. One of them is litter aeration (LA) by tumbling. However, there is little information related to the effect of this technique on the spreading of pathogens of public health importance such as Salmonella. In this context, the objective of this study was to determine the epidemiology of Salmonella in poultry farms, when serial LA were implemented during the rearing cycle of broilers. For this purpose, an experimental broiler farm with 3 identical rooms was used in the study. Two rooms were assigned to the LA treatment, and the other one served as the control room. Environmental samples were taken in poultry houses after LA in 4 consecutive weeks at the end of the cycle. All samples collected were analyzed according to the standards of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO 6579:2002, Annex D). The results of this study showed that in the control and treated rooms, the percentage of positive samples for Salmonella decreased in the first 3 LA sessions (LA 1, LA 2, and LA 3). However, in the last LA session of rearing (LA 4), the percentage of positive samples increased from 8.2 to 33.2% in the control room instead the treated rooms where the positive samples decreased (P = 0.017). Thus, the aeration of the litter as litter management technique in poultry broiler production does not increase the shedding or the spread of Salmonella throughout broiler houses. In addition, it could be an effective technique to reduce the infective pressure of this bacterium in several areas of the farm or in certain moments of the rearing period with more risk of multiplication and spreading of Salmonella.

  2. A review of factors influencing litter size in Irish sows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lawlor Peadar G

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Many factors influence litter size. These include genetics, gilt management, lactation length, parity distribution, disease, stress and boar fertility. In the past 20 years, litter size in Irish sows has increased by only one pig. Born alive figures now average at 11.2 pigs per litter. In this regard, Ireland is falling behind our European competitors who have made significant advances over this time. Denmark, for example, has an average figure of 12.7 pigs born alive per litter and France an average of 12.5. The single area that could be improved immediately is sow feeding. It is important that sows are fed correctly throughout pregnancy. If over-fed during pregnancy, sows will have depressed appetite during lactation. If underfed in pregnancy, sows will be too thin at farrowing. The correct way to feed a pregnant sow is to match her feed allocation to her requirement for maintenance, body growth and growth of her developing foetuses. During lactation, sows should be given as much feed as they can eat to prevent excessive loss of body condition. Liquid-feed curves should be such that lactating sows are provided with a minimum mean daily feed supply of 6.2 kg. A small proportion of sows will eat more and this could be given as supplementary dry feed. Where dry feeding is practised in the farrowing house, it is difficult to hand-feed sows to match their appetite. Ideally ad libitum wet/dry feeders should be used. From weaning to service, sows should once again be fed ad libitum. If liquid feeding, this means giving at least 60 MJ DE (digestible energy per day during this period. If dry feeding, at least 4 kg of lactation diet should be fed daily. The effort spent perfecting sow feeding management on units should yield high dividends in the form of increased pigs born alive per litter.

  3. Microbiological and chemical properties of litter from different chicken types and production systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Omeira, N.; Barbour, E.K.; Nehme, P.A.; Hamadeh, S.K.; Zurayk, R.; Bashour, I.

    2006-01-01

    Chicken litter is produced in large quantities from all types of poultry raising activities. It is primarily used for land application, thus it is essential to analyze its properties before it is released to the environment. The objective of this study is to compare the microbiological and chemical properties of litter generated from layer and broiler chickens reared under intensive and free-range production systems. The microbiological analysis consisted of the enumeration of total bacteria, total coliforms, Staphylococcus species, Salmonella species and Clostridium perfringens. Chicken litter from layers reared under intensive and free range systems showed lower mean total bacterial count than the litter collected from chicken broilers reared under either of the two systems (P = 0.0291). The litter from intensive layers had the lowest mean total coliform counts (P = 0.0222) while the lowest Staphylococcus species count was observed in the litter from free-range layers (P = 0.0077). The C. perfringens count was the lowest in chicken litter from intensively raised broilers and layers (P = 0.0001). The chemical properties of litter from the different chicken types and production systems were compared based on determination of pH, electrical conductivity, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, cadmium and zinc. Litter from free-range broilers showed the highest pH value (P = 0.0005); however, the electrical conductivity was higher in the litter from both intensive and free-range layers compared to the litter from both broiler production systems (P = 0.0117). Chicken litter from intensive systems had higher nitrogen content than litter from free-range systems (P = 0.0000). The total phosphorus was the lowest in free-range broiler litter (P = 0.0001), while the total potassium was the lowest in litter from intensively managed broilers (P = 0.0000). Zinc appeared higher in litter from layers compared to that from broilers (P = 0.0101). The cadmium content was higher

  4. Microbiological and chemical properties of litter from different chicken types and production systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Omeira, N. [Department of Land and Water Resources, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon); Barbour, E.K. [Department of Animal Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon)]. E-mail: eb01@aub.edu.lb; Nehme, P.A. [Department of Land and Water Resources, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon); Hamadeh, S.K. [Department of Animal Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon); Zurayk, R. [Department of Land and Water Resources, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon); Bashour, I. [Department of Land and Water Resources, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut (Lebanon)

    2006-08-15

    Chicken litter is produced in large quantities from all types of poultry raising activities. It is primarily used for land application, thus it is essential to analyze its properties before it is released to the environment. The objective of this study is to compare the microbiological and chemical properties of litter generated from layer and broiler chickens reared under intensive and free-range production systems. The microbiological analysis consisted of the enumeration of total bacteria, total coliforms, Staphylococcus species, Salmonella species and Clostridium perfringens. Chicken litter from layers reared under intensive and free range systems showed lower mean total bacterial count than the litter collected from chicken broilers reared under either of the two systems (P = 0.0291). The litter from intensive layers had the lowest mean total coliform counts (P = 0.0222) while the lowest Staphylococcus species count was observed in the litter from free-range layers (P = 0.0077). The C. perfringens count was the lowest in chicken litter from intensively raised broilers and layers (P = 0.0001). The chemical properties of litter from the different chicken types and production systems were compared based on determination of pH, electrical conductivity, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, cadmium and zinc. Litter from free-range broilers showed the highest pH value (P = 0.0005); however, the electrical conductivity was higher in the litter from both intensive and free-range layers compared to the litter from both broiler production systems (P = 0.0117). Chicken litter from intensive systems had higher nitrogen content than litter from free-range systems (P = 0.0000). The total phosphorus was the lowest in free-range broiler litter (P = 0.0001), while the total potassium was the lowest in litter from intensively managed broilers (P = 0.0000). Zinc appeared higher in litter from layers compared to that from broilers (P = 0.0101). The cadmium content was higher

  5. Effect of Litter Moisture on the Development of Footpad Dermatitis in Broiler Chickens

    OpenAIRE

    TAIRA, Kazuyo; NAGAI, Toshimune; OBI, Takeshi; TAKASE, Kozo

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Broiler chicks were reared on either wet litter or dry litter to compare the development of footpad dermatitis (FPD). Broilers reared on wet litter first developed FPD at 14 days of age. Their FPD scores increased sharply after 21 days of age, reaching 2.92 at 42 days. In broilers reared on dry litter, FPD was first observed at 28 days of age, and the FPD score was only 0.70 at 42 days. When 21- or 28-day-old broilers that had been reared on wet litter and had developed FPD were move...

  6. Microbiological and chemical properties of litter from different chicken types and production systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omeira, N; Barbour, E K; Nehme, P A; Hamadeh, S K; Zurayk, R; Bashour, I

    2006-08-15

    Chicken litter is produced in large quantities from all types of poultry raising activities. It is primarily used for land application, thus it is essential to analyze its properties before it is released to the environment. The objective of this study is to compare the microbiological and chemical properties of litter generated from layer and broiler chickens reared under intensive and free-range production systems. The microbiological analysis consisted of the enumeration of total bacteria, total coliforms, Staphylococcus species, Salmonella species and Clostridium perfringens. Chicken litter from layers reared under intensive and free range systems showed lower mean total bacterial count than the litter collected from chicken broilers reared under either of the two systems (P=0.0291). The litter from intensive layers had the lowest mean total coliform counts (P=0.0222) while the lowest Staphylococcus species count was observed in the litter from free-range layers (P=0.0077). The C. perfringens count was the lowest in chicken litter from intensively raised broilers and layers (P=0.0001). The chemical properties of litter from the different chicken types and production systems were compared based on determination of pH, electrical conductivity, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, cadmium and zinc. Litter from free-range broilers showed the highest pH value (P=0.0005); however, the electrical conductivity was higher in the litter from both intensive and free-range layers compared to the litter from both broiler production systems (P=0.0117). Chicken litter from intensive systems had higher nitrogen content than litter from free-range systems (P=0.0000). The total phosphorus was the lowest in free-range broiler litter (P=0.0001), while the total potassium was the lowest in litter from intensively managed broilers (P=0.0000). Zinc appeared higher in litter from layers compared to that from broilers (P=0.0101). The cadmium content was higher in the litter from

  7. Effect of Paper Waste Products as a Litter Material on Broiler Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serdar Özlü

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This study conducted to determine the possibilities of using the paper waste products as a litter material in broiler production. A total of 468 Ross 308 broilers were used in this experiment. Litter materials were rice hulls (RH, waste paper (WP and mix of them (50 % RH + 50 % WP. BW was approximately 60 g heavier in waste paper group compare to other two litter groups at 42d of age. Type of litter material had no significant effects on feed conversion ratio, livability and leg defect. Therefore, paper waste products have potential as an alternative litter material for broiler production.

  8. Spatio-temporal dynamics of the invasive plant species Elytrigia atherica on natural salt marshes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veeneklaas, Roos M.; Dijkema, Kees S.; Hecker, Norbert; Bakker, Jan P.

    Question In the past decades, the tall native invasive grass, Elytrigia atherica, has been increasing in frequency and dominance on salt marshes along the Wadden Sea coast. Is this rapid expansion an outcome of natural succession or is it driven by anthropogenic eutrophication resulting from

  9. Street litter reduction programs in the Netherlands: reflections on the implementation of the Dutch litter reduction program for 2007-2009. Lessons from a public private partnership in environmental policy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoppe, Thomas; Bressers, Johannes T.A.; de Bruijn, Theo; Franco Garcia, Maria Maria

    2013-01-01

    On a daily basis one is confronted with litter. Most forms of litter are, however, of no concern to people. Nonetheless, litter accounts for serious economic costs, and causes negative effects to health, safety and biodiversity. Most countries implement litter reduction policy programs, often in the

  10. The importance of cross-reactivity in grass pollen allergy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksić Ivana

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available According to the data obtained from in vivo and in vitro testing in Serbia, a significant number of patients have allergic symptoms caused by grass pollen. We examined the protein composition of grass pollens (Dactylis glomerata, Lolium perenne and Phleum pratense and cross-reactivity in patients allergic to grass pollen from our region. The grass pollen allergen extract was characterized by SDS-PAGE, while cross-reactivity of single grass pollens was revealed by immunoblot analysis. A high degree of cross-reactivity was demonstrated for all three single pollens in the sera of allergic patients compared to the grass pollen extract mixture. Confirmation of the existence of cross-reactivity between different antigenic sources facilitates the use of monovalent vaccines, which are easier to standardize and at the same time prevent further sensitization of patients and reduces adverse reactions. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 172049 i br. 172024

  11. Evaluating grasses as a long-term energy resource

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Christian, D.G.; Riche, A.B.

    2001-07-01

    The work reported here is part of an ongoing project that aims to evaluate the yields of three perennial rhizomatous grasses and determine their suitability as bio-energy crops. The work began in 1993, and the grasses have been monitored continuously since that time. This report covers the period 1999/2000, and includes: the performance of plots of the energy grasses Miscanthus grass, switchgrass and reed canary grass seven years after they were planted; assessment of the yield of 15 genotypes of Miscanthus planted in 1997; monitoring all the species throughout the growing period for the presence of pests, weeds and diseases; measurement of the amount of nitrate leached from below Miscanthus grass; investigating the occurrence of lodging in switchgrass. (Author)

  12. Monitoring Litter Inputs from the Adour River (Southwest France to the Marine Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine Bruge

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Rivers are major pathways for litter to enter the ocean, especially plastic debris. Yet, further research is needed to improve knowledge on rivers contribution, increase data availability, refine litter origins, and develop relevant solutions to limit riverine litter inputs. This study presents the results of three years of aquatic litter monitoring on the Adour river catchment (southwest of France. Litter monitoring consisted of collecting all litter stranded on river banks or stuck in the riparian vegetation in defined areas identified from cartographic and hydromorphological analyses, and with the support of local stakeholders. Litter samples were then sorted and counted according to a list of items containing 130 categories. Since 2014, 278 litter samplings were carried out, and 120,632 litter items were collected, sorted, and counted. 41% of litter could not be identified due to high degradation. Food and beverage packaging, smoking-related items, sewage related debris, fishery and mariculture gear, and common household items represented around 70% of identifiable items. Overall, the present study contributes to our knowledge of litter sources and pathways, with the target of reducing the amounts entering the ocean. The long-term application of this monitoring is a way forward to measure societal changes as well as assess effectiveness of measures.

  13. Attitude towards littering as a mediator of the relationship between personality attributes and responsible environmental behavior

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ojedokun, Oluyinka

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → Independently, altruism and locus of control contributed significantly toward attitude towards littering. → Altruism and locus of control jointly contributed significantly to attitude towards littering. → The results further show a significant joint influence of altruism and locus of control on REB. → The independent contributions reveal that altruism and locus of control contribute significantly to REB. → Attitude towards littering mediates the relationship between locus of control and REB. - Abstract: The study tested whether attitude towards littering mediates the relationship between personality attributes (altruism and locus of control) and responsible environmental behavior (REB) among some residents of Ibadan metropolis, Nigeria. Using multistage sampling technique, measures of each construct were administered to 1360 participants. Results reveal significant independent and joint influence of personality attributes on attitude towards littering and responsible environmental behavior, respectively. Attitude towards littering also mediates the relationship between personality characteristics and REB. These findings imply that individuals who possess certain desirable personality characteristics and who have unfavorable attitude towards littering have more tendencies to engage in pro-environmental behavior. Therefore, stakeholders who have waste management as their priority should incorporate this information when guidelines for public education and litter prevention programs are being developed. It is suggested that psychologists should be involved in designing of litter prevention strategies. This will ensure the inclusion of behavioral issues in such strategies. An integrated approach to litter prevention that combines empowerment, cognitive, social, and technical solutions is recommended as the most effective tool of tackling the litter problem among residents of Ibadan metropolis.

  14. Impact of fresh or used litter on the posthatch immune system of commercial broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, K W; Lillehoj, H S; Lee, S H; Jang, S I; Ritter, G Donald; Bautista, D A; Lillehoj, E P

    2011-12-01

    This study was carried out to investigate the effects of exposure of growing broiler chickens of commercial origin to used poultry litter on intestinal and systemic immune responses. The litter types evaluated were fresh wood shavings or used litter obtained from commercial poultry farms with or without a history of gangrenous dermatitis (GD). Immune parameters measured were serum nitric oxide (NO) levels, serum antibody titers against Eimeria or Clostridium perfringens, mitogen-induced spleen cell proliferation, and intestinal intraepithelial lymphocyte or splenic lymphocyte subpopulations. At 43 days posthatch, birds raised on used litter from a GD farm had higher serum NO levels and greater Eimeria or C. perfringens antibody levels compared with chickens raised on fresh litter or used, non-GD litter. Birds raised on non-GD and GD used litter had greater spleen cell mitogenic responses compared with chickens raised on fresh litter. Finally, spleen and intestinal lymphocyte subpopulations were increased or decreased depending on the litter type and the surface marker analyzed. Although it is likely that the presence of Eimeria oocysts and endemic viruses varies qualitatively and quantitatively between flocks and, by extension, varies between different used litter types, we believe that these data provide evidence that exposure of growing chicks to used poultry litter stimulates humoral and cell-mediated immune responses, presumably due to contact with contaminating enteric pathogens.

  15. Beach litter along various sand dune habitats in the southern Adriatic (E Mediterranean).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Šilc, Urban; Küzmič, Filip; Caković, Danka; Stešević, Danijela

    2018-03-01

    Marine litter accumulates on sandy beaches and is an important environmental problem, as well as a threat to habitat types that are among the most endangered according to EU legislation. We sampled 120 random plots (2 × 2 m) in spring 2017 to determine the distribution pattern of beach litter along the zonation of habitat types from sea to the inland. The most frequent litter items were plastic, polystyrene and glass. A clear increase of litter cover along the sea-inland gradient is evident, and foredunes and pine forests have the highest cover of litter. Almost no litter was present in humid dune slacks. Shoreline and recreational activities are the major source of beach litter, while ocean/waterway activities are more important in the aphytic zone and strandline. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. The role of the plant litter layer in the recycling of radiocaesium in upland habitats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horrill, A.D.; Kennedy, V.H.; Dent, T.L.; Thomson, A.J.

    1992-08-01

    Field and laboratory studies have been used to investigate the role of the plant litter layer in upland habitats. Radiocaesium, deposited unhomogeneously, by the Chernobyl accident, ranged from 1 3000 - 2 400 Bq kgsup(-1) in a range of plant litters in May 1992. In the field 45% of the 137 Cs in heather litter was released over a two year period. Litter leachates contained 0.1 -0.7 Bq 1 -1 of 137 Cs. Microbial population size has also been shown to affect 137 Cs release rates in laboratory experiments on heather and spruce litter. 137 Cs distribution within litter has been investigated by sequential extraction techniques and it was shown that there is a potential long term immobilization of c. 20% of litter 137 Cs by the lignin component. (author)

  17. Effect of Poultry Litter Treatment (PLT) on death due to ascites in broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terzich, M; Quarles, C; Goodwin, M A; Brown, J

    1998-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to determine the effect of Poultry Litter Treatment (PLT) on levels of litter moisture, litter nitrogen, atmospheric ammonia, and death due to ascites. Data were collected from chicks raised in containment conditions that resembled commercial settings. The ascites death rate (5.9%) in broiler chicks on PLT-treated litter was significantly (chi 2 = 15.5, df = 1, P = 0.0001) lower than that (31.5%) in broiler chicks raised on untreated litter. Likewise, atmospheric ammonia levels in pens that had been treated with PLT were significantly (P litter moisture and litter nitrogen levels were not different (P > 0.05) among treatments at any sample interval.

  18. Effect of litter moisture on the development of footpad dermatitis in broiler chickens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taira, Kazuyo; Nagai, Toshimune; Obi, Takeshi; Takase, Kozo

    2014-04-01

    Broiler chicks were reared on either wet litter or dry litter to compare the development of footpad dermatitis (FPD). Broilers reared on wet litter first developed FPD at 14 days of age. Their FPD scores increased sharply after 21 days of age, reaching 2.92 at 42 days. In broilers reared on dry litter, FPD was first observed at 28 days of age, and the FPD score was only 0.70 at 42 days. When 21- or 28-day-old broilers that had been reared on wet litter and had developed FPD were moved to dry litter, the progression of FPD was suppressed or delayed. These results suggest that reducing litter moisture is effective in preventing FPD and suppressing disease progression.

  19. Mineralization of hormones in breeder and broiler litters at different water potentials and temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemmings, Sarah N J; Hartel, Peter G

    2006-01-01

    When poultry litter is landspread, steroidal hormones present in the litter may reach surface waters, where they may have undesirable biological effects. In a laboratory study, we determined the mineralization of [4-14C]-labeled 17beta-estradiol, estrone, and testosterone in breeder litter at three different water potentials (-56, -24, and -12 MPa) and temperatures (25, 35, and 45 degrees C), and in broiler litter at two different water potentials (-24 and -12 MPa) and temperatures (25 and 35 degrees C). Mineralization was similar in both litters and generally increased with increasing water content and decreasing temperature. After 23 wk at -24 MPa, an average of 27, 11, and litter was mineralized to 14CO2 at 25, 35, and 45 degrees C, respectively. In contrast, mineralization of the radiolabeled estradiol and estrone was mineralized. The minimal mineralization suggests that the litters may still be potential sources of hormones to surface and subsurface waters.

  20. The influence of litter composition across the litter–soil interface on mass loss, nitrogen dynamics and the decomposer community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Many studies have investigated the influence of plant litter species composition on decomposition, but results have been context-dependent. Litter and soil are considered to constitute a decomposition continuum, but whether litter and soil ecosystems respond to litter identity an...

  1. Determining the regional potential for a grass biomethane industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smyth, Beatrice M.; Smyth, Henry; Murphy, Jerry D.

    2011-01-01

    Research highlights: → We identified assessment criteria for determining the regional potential for grass biomethane. → Grass biomethane is distributed via the natural gas grid. → The criteria include: land use; grass yields; gas grid coverage; availability of co-substrates. → The county with the highest potential can fuel 50% of cars or supply 130% of domestic gas consumption. - Abstract: Grass biogas/biomethane has been put forward as a renewable energy solution and it has been shown to perform well in terms of energy balance, greenhouse gas emissions and policy constraints. Biofuel and energy crop solutions are country-specific and grass biomethane has strong potential in countries with temperate climates and a high proportion of grassland, such as Ireland. For a grass biomethane industry to develop in a country, suitable regions (i.e. those with the highest potential) must be identified. In this paper, factors specifically related to the assessment of the potential of a grass biogas/biomethane industry are identified and analysed. The potential for grass biogas and grass biomethane is determined on a county-by-county basis using multi-criteria decision analysis. Values are assigned to each county and ratings and weightings applied to determine the overall county potential. The potential for grass biomethane with co-digestion of slaughter waste (belly grass) is also determined. The county with the highest potential (Limerick) is analysed in detail and is shown to have ready potential for production of gaseous biofuel to meet either 50% of the vehicle fleet or 130% of the domestic natural gas demand, through 25 facilities at a scale of ca. 30 kt yr -1 of feedstock. The assessment factors developed in this paper can be used in other resource studies into grass biomethane or other energy crops.

  2. Fate of leaf-litter N in forest and grassland along a pedo-climatic gradient in south-western Siberia: an in situ 15N-labelling experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brédoire, Félix; Zeller, Bernd; Nikitich, Polina; Barsukov, Pavel A.; Rusalimova, Olga; Bakker, Mark R.; Legout, Arnaud; Bashuk, Alexander; Kayler, Zachary E.; Derrien, Delphine

    2017-04-01

    , which might be related to a more intense drainage because of higher snow levels, as inferred from soil water budget modelling. Interestingly, this higher drainage seems to induce only a small loss of N from the system. Such retention could result from soil physico-chemical properties (higher fine silt and oxides contents) enhancing soil organic matter stabilization, and/or by the immobilization of N in microbial metabolites. We observed differing N dynamics between forest and grassland that can be related to the different chemical composition of initial litter (tree leaves vs. grasses) and plant-soil interactions. In general, N was retained in the first centimeters of the mineral soil in grassland while the transfer was deeper in the forest soils. As fine root exploration is denser in grassland topsoil than in forest topsoil, we infer that an efficient uptake of N by grasses in the first soil layers limits N migration down the profile. It is also possible that grasses are active earlier in the season than trees and understorey species, i.e. at snow-melt when drainage is the most intense.

  3. Through the sands of time: Beach litter trends from nine cleaned north cornish beaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Andrew J R; Porter, Adam; Hembrow, Neil; Sharpe, Jolyon; Galloway, Tamara S; Lewis, Ceri

    2017-09-01

    Marine litter and its accumulation on beaches is an issue of major current concern due to its significant environmental and economic impacts. Yet our understanding of spatio-temporal trends in beach litter and the drivers of these trends are currently limited by the availability of robust long term data sets. Here we present a unique data set collected systematically once a month, every month over a six year period for nine beaches along the North Coast of Cornwall, U.K. to investigate the key drivers of beach litter in the Bude, Padstow and Porthcothan areas. Overall, an average of 0.02 litter items m -2 per month were collected during the six year study, with Bude beaches (Summerleaze, Crooklets and Widemouth) the most impacted (0.03 ± 0.004 litter items m -2 per month). The amount of litter collected each month decreased by 18% and 71% respectively for Padstow (Polzeath, Trevone and Harlyn) and Bude areas over the 6 years, possibly related to the regular cleaning, however litter increased by 120% despite this monthly cleaning effort on the Padstow area beaches. Importantly, at all nine beaches the litter was dominated by small, fragmented plastic pieces and rope fibres, which account for 32% and 17% of all litter items collected, respectively. The weathered nature of these plastics indicates they have been in the marine environment for an extended period of time. So, whilst classifying the original source of these plastics is not possible, it can be concluded they are not the result of recent public littering. This data highlights both the extent of the marine litter problem and that current efforts to reduce littering by beach users will only tackle a fraction of this litter. Such information is vital for developing effective management strategies for beach and marine litter at both regional and global levels. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Investigation of Desso GrassMaster® as application in hydraulic engineering

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steeg, van der P.; Paulissen, M.P.C.P.; Roex, E.; Mommer, L.

    2015-01-01

    Dessa GrassMaster® is a reinforced grass system which is applied successfully on sports fields and enables to use a sports field more intensively than a normal grass field. In this report the possibility of an application of Dessa GrassMaster®in hydraulic conditions, with a focus on grass dikes, is

  5. Rain forest nutrient cycling and productivity in response to large-scale litter manipulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Tana E; Lawrence, Deborah; Clark, Deborah A; Chazdon, Robin L

    2009-01-01

    Litter-induced pulses of nutrient availability could play an important role in the productivity and nutrient cycling of forested ecosystems, especially tropical forests. Tropical forests experience such pulses as a result of wet-dry seasonality and during major climatic events, such as strong El Niños. We hypothesized that (1) an increase in the quantity and quality of litter inputs would stimulate leaf litter production, woody growth, and leaf litter nutrient cycling, and (2) the timing and magnitude of this response would be influenced by soil fertility and forest age. To test these hypotheses in a Costa Rican wet tropical forest, we established a large-scale litter manipulation experiment in two secondary forest sites and four old-growth forest sites of differing soil fertility. In replicated plots at each site, leaves and twigs (forest floor. We analyzed leaf litter mass, [N] and [P], and N and P inputs for addition, removal, and control plots over a two-year period. We also evaluated basal area increment of trees in removal and addition plots. There was no response of forest productivity or nutrient cycling to litter removal; however, litter addition significantly increased leaf litter production and N and P inputs 4-5 months following litter application. Litter production increased as much as 92%, and P and N inputs as much as 85% and 156%, respectively. In contrast, litter manipulation had no significant effect on woody growth. The increase in leaf litter production and N and P inputs were significantly positively related to the total P that was applied in litter form. Neither litter treatment nor forest type influenced the temporal pattern of any of the variables measured. Thus, environmental factors such as rainfall drive temporal variability in litter and nutrient inputs, while nutrient release from decomposing litter influences the magnitude. Seasonal or annual variation in leaf litter mass, such as occurs in strong El Niño events, could positively

  6. Through the sands of time: Beach litter trends from nine cleaned north cornish beaches

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watts, Andrew J.R.; Porter, Adam; Hembrow, Neil; Sharpe, Jolyon; Galloway, Tamara S.; Lewis, Ceri

    2017-01-01

    Marine litter and its accumulation on beaches is an issue of major current concern due to its significant environmental and economic impacts. Yet our understanding of spatio-temporal trends in beach litter and the drivers of these trends are currently limited by the availability of robust long term data sets. Here we present a unique data set collected systematically once a month, every month over a six year period for nine beaches along the North Coast of Cornwall, U.K. to investigate the key drivers of beach litter in the Bude, Padstow and Porthcothan areas. Overall, an average of 0.02 litter items m −2 per month were collected during the six year study, with Bude beaches (Summerleaze, Crooklets and Widemouth) the most impacted (0.03 ± 0.004 litter items m −2 per month). The amount of litter collected each month decreased by 18% and 71% respectively for Padstow (Polzeath, Trevone and Harlyn) and Bude areas over the 6 years, possibly related to the regular cleaning, however litter increased by 120% despite this monthly cleaning effort on the Padstow area beaches. Importantly, at all nine beaches the litter was dominated by small, fragmented plastic pieces and rope fibres, which account for 32% and 17% of all litter items collected, respectively. The weathered nature of these plastics indicates they have been in the marine environment for an extended period of time. So, whilst classifying the original source of these plastics is not possible, it can be concluded they are not the result of recent public littering. This data highlights both the extent of the marine litter problem and that current efforts to reduce littering by beach users will only tackle a fraction of this litter. Such information is vital for developing effective management strategies for beach and marine litter at both regional and global levels. - Highlights: • Unique and systemically collected beach clean data set from 9 beaches over 6 years. • The most abundant litter items were

  7. Accelerated development in Johnsongrass seedlings (Sorghum halepense) suppresses the growth of native grasses through size-asymmetric competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwinning, Susanne; Meckel, Heather; Reichmann, Lara G; Polley, H Wayne; Fay, Philip A

    2017-01-01

    Invasive plant species often dominate native species in competition, augmenting other potential advantages such as release from natural enemies. Resource pre-emption may be a particularly important mechanism for establishing dominance over competitors of the same functional type. We hypothesized that competitive success of an exotic grass against native grasses is mediated by establishing an early size advantage. We tested this prediction among four perennial C4 warm-season grasses: the exotic weed Johnsongrass (Sorghum halepense), big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparius) and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). We predicted that a) the competitive effect of Johnsongrass on target species would be proportional to their initial biomass difference, b) competitive effect and response would be negatively correlated and c) soil fertility would have little effect on competitive relationships. In a greenhouse, plants of the four species were grown from seed either alone or with one Johnsongrass neighbor at two fertilizer levels and periodically harvested. The first two hypotheses were supported: The seedling biomass of single plants at first harvest (50 days after seeding) ranked the same way as the competitive effect of Johnsongrass on target species: Johnsongrass critical mechanism by which exotic invasive species displace functionally similar native species and alter the functional dynamics of native communities.

  8. Incorporation of microplastics from litter into burrows of Lumbricus terrestris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huerta Lwanga, Esperanza; Gertsen, Hennie; Gooren, Harm; Peters, Piet; Salánki, Tamás; van der Ploeg, Martine; Besseling, Ellen; Koelmans, Albert A; Geissen, Violette

    2017-01-01

    Pollution caused by plastic debris is an urgent environmental problem. Here, we assessed the effects of microplastics in the soil surface litter on the formation and characterization of burrows built by the anecic earthworm Lumbricus terrestris in soil and quantified the amount of microplastics that was transported and deposited in L. terrestris burrows. Worms were exposed to soil surface litter treatments containing microplastics (Low Density Polyethylene) for 2 weeks at concentrations of 0%, 7%, 28%, 45% and 60%. The latter representing environmentally realistic concentrations found in hot spot soil locations. There were significantly more burrows found when soil was exposed to the surface treatment composed of 7% microplastics than in all other treatments. The highest amount of organic matter in the walls of the burrows was observed after using the treatments containing 28 and 45% microplastics. The highest microplastic bioturbation efficiency ratio (total microplastics (mg) in burrow walls/initial total surface litter microplastics (mg)) was found using the concentration of 7% microplastics, where L. terrestris introduced 73.5% of the surface microplastics into the burrow walls. The highest burrow wall microplastic content per unit weight of soil (11.8 ± 4.8 g kg- 1 ) was found using a concentration of 60% microplastics. L. terrestris was responsible for size-selective downward transport when exposed to concentrations of 7, 28 and 45% microplastics in the surface litter, as the fraction ≤50 μm microplastics in burrow walls increased by 65% compared to this fraction in the original surface litter plastic. We conclude that the high biogenic incorporation rate of the small-fraction microplastics from surface litter into burrow walls causes a risk of leaching through preferential flow into groundwater bodies. Furthermore, this leaching may have implications for the subsequent availability of microplastics to terrestrial organisms or for the transport

  9. The second wave of earthworm invasion: soil organic matter dynamics from the stable isotope perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, C.; Szlavecz, K. A.; Bernard, M.; Pitz, S.

    2013-12-01

    Through transformation of plant litter into soil organic matter (SOM) and translocation of ingested organic material among different soil depths, soil organisms, especially earthworms, are one of the major factors affecting SOM dynamics. In North America temperate soil, historical human activity has lead to invasion of European earthworms into habitats that were previously earthworm-free or inhabited only by native species. By consuming leaf litter and SOM, burrowing, and casting, invasive earthworms have been known for reducing the understory vegetation and leaf litter layer while increasing the thickness of organic soil, causing changes in the soil habitat and the distribution of SOM. Recently, another group of invasive earthworm, namely Amynthas from Asia, has been reported invading habitats already dominated by European species, causing a 'second wave of invasion' where the soil ecosystem, already modified by European species, is going through another transition. The mechanisms through which these functionally (ecologically) different species affect C and N transformation could be better understood by tracing the carbon and nitrogen derived from 13C- and 15N-labeled leaf litter into earthworm tissues and SOM. The objective of this study is to understand how earthworm species that differ ecologically, including the Asian Amynthas, interact with each other and how these interactions affect SOM dynamics. We hypothesized that 1) species feeding on different food resources will have different isotopic signature and their tissue 13C and 15N values will change due to facilitation or interspecific competition on food resources, and 2) the short-term fate of litter-derived carbon differs depending on the presence or absence of different earthworm species. These hypotheses were tested by field sampling and lab mesocosm experiments using 13C and 15N double-enriched Tulip Poplar leaf litter (mean 13C = 124‰, mean 15N = 1667‰) produced from tree saplings growing in an

  10. Early inflorescence development in the grasses (Poaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth A. Kellogg

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The shoot apical meristem of grasses produces the primary branches of the inflorescence, controlling inflorescence architecture and hence seed production. Whereas leaves are produced in a distichous pattern, with the primordia separated from each other by an angle of 180o, inflorescence branches are produced in a spiral in most species. The morphology and developmental genetics of the shift in phyllotaxis have been studied extensively in maize and rice. However, in wheat, Brachypodium, and oats, all in the grass subfamily Pooideae, the change in phyllotaxis does not occur; primary inflorescence branches are produced distichously. It is unknown whether the distichous inflorescence originated at the base of Pooideae, or whether it appeared several times independently. In this study, we show that Brachyelytrum, the genus sister to all other Pooideae has spiral phyllotaxis in the inflorescence, but that in the remaining 3000+ species of Pooideae, the phyllotaxis is two-ranked. These two-ranked inflorescences are not perfectly symmetrical, and have a clear front and back; this developmental axis has never been described in the literature and it is unclear what establishes its polarity. Strictly distichous inflorescences appear somewhat later in the evolution of the subfamily. Two-ranked inflorescences also appear in a few grass outgroups and sporadically elsewhere in the family, but unlike in Pooideae do not generally correlate with a major radiation of species. After production of branches, the inflorescence meristem may be converted to a spikelet meristem or may simply abort; this developmental decision appears to be independent of the branching pattern.

  11. ANATOMIC STRUCTURE OF CAMPANULA ROTUNDIFOLIA L. GRASS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. N. Bubenchikova

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The article present results of the study for a anatomic structure of Campanula rotundifolia grass from Campanulaceae family. Despite its dispersion and application in folk medicine, there are no data about its anatomic structure, therefore to estimate the indices of authenticity and quality of raw materials it is necessary to develop microdiagnostical features in the first place, which could help introducing of thisplant in a medical practice. The purpose of this work is to study anatomical structureof Campanula rotundifolia grass to determine its diagnostic features. Methods. Thestudy for anatomic structure was carried out in accordance with the requirements of State Pharmacopoeia, edition XIII. Micromed laboratory microscope with digital adjutage was used to create microphotoes, Photoshop CC was used for their processing. Result. We have established that stalk epidermis is prosenchymal, slightly winding with straight of splayed end cells. After study for the epidermis cells we established that upper epidermis cells had straight walls and are slightly winding. The cells of lower epidermishave more winding walls with prolong wrinkled cuticule. Presence of simple one-cell, thin wall, rough papillose hair on leaf and stalk epidermis. Cells of epidermis in fauces of corolla are prosenchymal, with winding walls, straight or winding walls in a cup. Papillary excrescences can be found along the cup edges. Stomatal apparatus is anomocytic. Conclusion. As the result of the study we have carried out the research for Campanula rotundifolia grass anatomic structure, and determined microdiagnostic features for determination of raw materials authenticity, which included presence of simple, one-cell, thin-walled, rough papillose hair on both epidermises of a leaf, along the veins, leaf edge, and stalk epidermis, as well as the presence of epidermis cells with papillary excrescences along the edges of leaves and cups. Intercellular canals are situatedalong the

  12. Monitoring multi-year macro ocean litter dynamics and backward-tracking simulation of litter origins on a remote island in the South China Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ko, Chia-Ying; Hsin, Yi-Chia; Yu, Teng-Lang; Liu, Kuo-Lieh; Shiah, Fuh-Kwo; Jeng, Ming-Shiou

    2018-04-01

    Ocean litter has accumulated rapidly and is becoming a major environmental concern, yet quantitative and regular observations and exploration that track litter origins are limited. By implementing monthly sample collections over five years (2012–2016) at Dongsha Island, a remote island in the northern South China Sea (SCS), we assessed macro ocean litter dynamics, identified source countries of individual plastic bottles, and analyzed the origins of the litter by a backward-tracking model simulation considering both the effects of current velocity and windage. The results showed that large amounts of litter, which varied monthly and annually in weight and quantity, reached the island during the study years, and there were spatial differences in accumulation patterns between the north and south coasts. Styrofoam and plastic bottles were the two primary sources of macro ocean litter both annually and monthly, and most of the litter collected on the island originated from China and Vietnam, which were collectively responsible for approximately 47.5%–63.7% per month. The simulation indicated that current advection at the near-surface depths and low windage at the sea surface showed similar patterns, while medium to high windage exhibited comparable expression patterns in response to potential source regions and drifting time experiments. At either the surface with low windage or current advection at depths of 0.5 m and 1 m, macro ocean litter in the Western Philippine Sea, i.e. through the Luzon Strait between Taiwan and the Philippines, was an important contributor to the litter bulk from October to March, whereas the litter was predicted to mainly originate from the southwestern SCS from April to September. With an increasing windage effect, litter in the Taiwan Strait was predicted to be an additional major potential source. Surprisingly, a small proportion of the macro ocean litter was predicted to continuously travel in the northern SCS for a long duration

  13. Species-specific effects of live roots and shoot litter on soil decomposer abundances do not forecast plant litter-nitrogen uptake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saj, Stéphane; Mikola, Juha; Ekelund, Flemming

    2009-08-01

    Plant species produce litter of varying quality and differ in the quality and quantity of compounds they release from live roots, which both can induce different decomposer growth in the soil. To test whether differences in decomposer growth can forecast the amount of N species acquire from plant litter, as suggested by theory, we grew individuals of three grassland plants-Holcus lanatus, Plantago lanceolata and Lotus corniculatus-in soils into which (15)N-labelled litter of either Holcus, Plantago or Lotus was added. We measured the effects of live roots and litter of each species on soil microbes and their protozoan and nematode feeders, and to link decomposer growth and plant nutrient uptake, we measured the amount of N taken up by plants from the added litter. We hypothesised that those species that induce the highest growth of microbes, and especially that of microbial feeders, will also take up the highest amount of N from the litter. We found, however, that although numbers of bacterial-feeding Protozoa and nematodes were on average lower after addition of Holcus than Plantago or Lotus litter, N uptake was higher from Holcus litter. Further, although the effects on Protozoa and bacterial- and fungal-feeding nematodes did not differ between the live plants, litter-N uptake differed, with Holcus being the most efficient compared to Plantago and Lotus. Hence, although microbes and their feeders unquestionably control N mineralization in the soil, and their growth differs among plant species, these differences cannot predict differences in litter-N uptake among plant species. A likely reason is that for nutrient uptake, other species-specific plant traits, such as litter chemistry, root proliferation ability and competitiveness for soil N, override in significance the species-specific ability of plants to induce decomposer growth.

  14. Upgrated fuel from reed canary grass

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oravainen, H. [VTT Energy, Jyvaeskylae (Finland)

    1997-12-01

    Results described in this presentation are from a large EU-project - Development of a new crop production system based on delayed harvesting and system for its combined processing to chemical pulp and biofuel powder. This is a project to develop the use of Reed Canary Grass (Phalaris Arundinaceae) both for pulp industry and energy production. The main contractor of the project is Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (coordinator), task coordinators are United Milling Systems A/S from Denmark, and Jaakko Poeyry Oy and VTT Energy from Finland In addition, there are partners from several countries participating in the project

  15. Prospects for Hybrid Breeding in Bioenergy Grasses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aguirre, Andrea Arias; Studer, Bruno; Frei, Ursula

    2012-01-01

    , we address crucial topics to implement hybrid breeding, such as the availability and development of heterotic groups, as well as biological mechanisms for hybridization control such as self-incompatibility (SI) and male sterility (MS). Finally, we present potential hybrid breeding schemes based on SI...... of different hybrid breeding schemes to optimally exploit heterosis for biomass yield in perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), two perennial model grass species for bioenergy production. Starting with a careful evaluation of current population and synthetic breeding methods...

  16. Grass-on-grass competition along a catenal gradient in mesic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Three aboveground treatments (full light competition, no light competition and clipping to simulate grazing), and two belowground treatments (full belowground competition and belowground competition excluded by a root tube), were used. On all soil depths the three grass species differed in mean mass, with E. racemosa ...

  17. Predicting invasion in grassland ecosystems: is exotic dominance the real embarrassment of richness?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seabloom, Eric W. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Borer, Elizabeth T. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Buckley, Yvonne [ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane Queensland 4072 Australia; Cleland, Elsa E. [Ecology, Behavior & Evolution Section, University of California, San Diego La Jolla CA 92093 USA; Davies, Kendi [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309 USA; Firn, Jennifer [Queensland University of Technology, Biogeosciences, Brisbane Queensland 4000 Australia; Harpole, W. Stanley [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Hautier, Yann [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190 CH-8057 Zurich Switzerland; Lind, Eric [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; MacDougall, Andrew [Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph Ontario N1G 2W1 Canada; Orrock, John L. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, Madison WI 53706 USA; Prober, Suzanne M. [CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences, Private Bag 5 Wembley WA 6913 Australia; Adler, Peter [Department of Wildland Resources and the Ecology Center, Utah State University, Logan UT 84322 USA; Alberti, Juan [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Michael Anderson, T. [Department of Biology, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem NC 27109 USA; Bakker, Jonathan D. [School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle WA 98195-4115 USA; Biederman, Lori A. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Blumenthal, Dana [Rangeland Resources Research Unit, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Fort Collins CO 80526 USA; Brown, Cynthia S. [Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523 USA; Brudvig, Lars A. [Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing MI 48824 USA; Caldeira, Maria [Centro de Estudos Florestais, Instituto Superior de Agronomia, Technical University of Lisbon, Lisbon Portugal; Chu, Chengjin [School of Life Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000 China; Crawley, Michael J. [Department of Biology, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Ascot SL5 7PY UK; Daleo, Pedro [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Damschen, Ellen I. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, Madison WI 53706 USA; D' Antonio, Carla M. [Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara CA 93106 USA; DeCrappeo, Nicole M. [U.S. Geological Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Dickman, Chris R. [Desert Ecology Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006 Australia; Du, Guozhen [School of Life Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000 China; Fay, Philip A. [USDA-ARS Grassland Soil and Water Research Lab, Temple TX 76502 USA; Frater, Paul [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Gruner, Daniel S. [Department of Entomology, University of Maryland, College Park MD 20742 USA; Hagenah, Nicole [School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Scottsville Pietermaritzburg 3209 South Africa; Department of Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Yale University, New Haven CT 06520 USA; Hector, Andrew [Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190 CH-8057 Zurich Switzerland; Helm, Aveliina [Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Tartu, Tartu Estonia; Hillebrand, Helmut [Institute for Chemistry and Biology of the Marine Environment, Carl-von-Ossietzky University, Wilhelmshaven Germany; Hofmockel, Kirsten S. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Humphries, Hope C. [INSTAAR, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309-0450 USA; Iribarne, Oscar [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Jin, Virginia L. [USDA-ARS Agroecosystem Management Research Unit, Lincoln NE 68583 USA; Kay, Adam [Biology Department, University of St. Thomas, Saint Paul MN 55105 USA; Kirkman, Kevin P. [School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Scottsville Pietermaritzburg 3209 South Africa; Klein, Julia A. [Department Forest, Rangeland & Watershed Stewardship, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523-1472 USA; Knops, Johannes M. H. [School of Biological Sciences, University of Nebraska, Lincoln NE 68588 USA; La Pierre, Kimberly J. [Department of Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Yale University, New Haven CT 06520 USA; Ladwig, Laura M. [Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque NM 87103 USA; Lambrinos, John G. [Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Leakey, Andrew D. B. [Department of Plant Biology and Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana IL 61801 USA; Li, Qi [Key Laboratory of Adaptation and Evolution of Plateau Biota, Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xining 810008 Qinghai China; Li, Wei [Yunnan Academy of Biodiversity, Southwest Forestry University, Kunming 650224 China; McCulley, Rebecca [Department of Plant & Soil Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington KY 40546 USA; Melbourne, Brett [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309 USA; Mitchell, Charles E. [Department of Biology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill NC 27599 USA; Moore, Joslin L. [Australian Research Centre for Urban Ecology, Melbourne, c/o School of Botany, University of Melbourne, Melbourne Victoria 3010 Australia; Morgan, John [Department of Botany, La Trobe University, Bundoora 3086 Victoria Australia; Mortensen, Brent [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; O' Halloran, Lydia R. [Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Pärtel, Meelis [Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Tartu, Tartu Estonia; Pascual, Jesús [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Pyke, David A. [U.S. Geological Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Risch, Anita C. [Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, 8903 Birmensdorf Switzerland; Salguero-Gómez, Roberto [ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane Queensland 4072 Australia; Sankaran, Mahesh [National Centre for Biological Sciences, GKVK Campus, Bellary Road Bangalore 560065 India; Schuetz, Martin [Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, 8903 Birmensdorf Switzerland; Simonsen, Anna [Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto ON M5S 3B2 Canada; Smith, Melinda [Department of Biology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523 USA; Stevens, Carly [Lancaster Environment Center, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YQ UK; Sullivan, Lauren [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Wardle, Glenda M. [Desert Ecology Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006 Australia; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M. [Biodiversity Research Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver V6T 1Z4 Canada; Wragg, Peter D. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Wright, Justin [Department of Biology, Duke University, Durham NC 27708 USA; Yang, Louie [Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis CA 95616 USA

    2013-10-16

    Invasions have increased the size of regional species pools, but are typically assumed to reduce native diversity. However, global-scale tests of this assumption have been elusive because of the focus on exotic species richness, rather than relative abundance. This is problematic because low invader richness can indicate invasion resistance by the native community or, alternatively, dominance by a single exotic species. Here, we used a globally replicated study to quantify relationships between exotic richness and abundance in grass-dominated ecosystems in 13 countries on six continents, ranging from salt marshes to alpine tundra. We tested effects of human land use, native community diversity, herbivore pressure, and nutrient limitation on exotic plant dominance. Despite its widespread use, exotic richness was a poor proxy for exotic dominance at low exotic richness, because sites that contained few exotic species ranged from relatively pristine (low exotic richness and cover) to almost completely exotic-dominated ones (low exotic richness but high exotic cover). Both exotic cover and richness were predicted by native plant diversity (native grass richness) and land use (distance to cultivation). Although climate was important for predicting both exotic cover and richness, climatic factors predicting cover (precipitation variability) differed from those predicting richness (maximum temperature and mean temperature in the wettest quarter). Herbivory and nutrient limitation did not predict exotic richness or cover. Exotic dominance was greatest in areas with low native grass richness at the site- or regional-scale. Although this could reflect native grass displacement, a lack of biotic resistance is a more likely explanation, given that grasses comprise the most aggressive invaders. These findings underscore the need to move beyond richness as a surrogate for the extent of invasion, because this metric confounds monodominance with invasion resistance. Monitoring

  18. Biodiversity: invasions by marine life on plastic debris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, David K A

    2002-04-25

    Colonization by alien species poses one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. Here I investigate the colonization by marine organisms of drift debris deposited on the shores of 30 remote islands from the Arctic to the Antarctic (across all oceans) and find that human litter more than doubles the rafting opportunities for biota, particularly at high latitudes. Although the poles may be protected from invasion by freezing sea surface temperatures, these may be under threat as the fastest-warming areas anywhere are at these latitudes.

  19. From Ecosystem-Scale to Litter Biochemistry: Controls on Carbon Sequestration in Coastal Wetlands of the Western Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louchouarn, P.; Kaiser, K.; Norwood, M. J.; Sterne, A. M. E.; Armitage, A. R.; HighField, W.; Brody, S.

    2015-12-01

    Landscape-level shifts in plant species distribution and abundance can fundamentally change the structure and services of an ecosystem. Such shifts are occurring within mangrove-marsh ecotones of the U.S., where over the last few decades, relatively mild winters have led to mangrove expansion into areas previously occupied by salt marsh plants. Here we present the synthesis of 3 years of multidisciplinary work to quantify ecosystem shifts at the regional scale, along the entire Texas (USA) coast of the western Gulf of Mexico, and transcribe these shifts into carbon (C) sequestration mass balances. We classified Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper images using artificial neural networks to quantify shifts in areal coverage of black mangrove (Avicennia germinans) and salt marsh (Spartina alterniflora and other grass and forb species) over 20 years across the Texas Gulf coast. Between 1990 and 2010, mangrove area expanded by 74% (+16 km2). Concurrently, salt marsh area experienced a net loss of 24% (-78 km2). Most of that loss was due to conversion to tidal flats or water, likely a result of relative sea level rise, with only 6% attributable to mangrove expansion. Although relative carbon load (per surface area) are statistically larger for mangrove wetlands, total C loads are larger for salt marsh wetlands due to their greater aerial coverage. The entire loss of above ground C (~7.0·109 g), was offset by salt marsh expansion (2.0·109 g) and mangrove expansion (5.6·109 g) over the study period. Concurrently, the net loss in salt marsh coverage led to a loss in below ground C accumulation capacity of 2.0·109 g/yr, whereas the net expansion of mangrove wetlands led to an added below ground C accumulation capacity of 0.4·109 g/yr. Biomarker data show that neutral carbohydrates and lignin contributed 30-70% and 10-40% of total C, respectively, in plant litter and surface sediments. Sharp declines of carbohydrate yields with depth occur parallel to increases in lignin

  20. Utilization of invasive tamarisk by salt marsh consumers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitcraft, Christine R; Levin, Lisa A; Talley, Drew; Crooks, Jeffrey A

    2008-11-01

    Plant invasions of coastal wetlands are rapidly changing the structure and function of these systems globally. Alteration of litter dynamics represents one of the fundamental impacts of an invasive plant on salt marsh ecosystems. Tamarisk species (Tamarix spp.), which extensively invade terrestrial and riparian habitats, have been demonstrated to enter food webs in these ecosystems. However, the trophic impacts of the relatively new invasion of tamarisk into marine ecosystem have not been assessed. We evaluated the trophic consequences of invasion by tamarisk for detrital food chains in the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve salt marsh using litter dynamics techniques and stable isotope enrichment experiments. The observations of a short residence time for tamarisk combined with relatively low C:N values indicate that tamarisk is a relatively available and labile food source. With an isotopic (15N) enrichment of tamarisk, we demonstrated that numerous macroinvertebrate taxonomic and trophic groups, both within and on the sediment, utilized 15N derived from labeled tamarisk detritus. Infaunal invertebrate species that took up no or limited 15N from labeled tamarisk (A. californica, enchytraeid oligochaetes, coleoptera larvae) occurred in lower abundance in the tamarisk-invaded environment. In contrast, species that utilized significant 15N from the labeled tamarisk, such as psychodid insects, an exotic amphipod, and an oniscid isopod, either did not change or occurred in higher abundance. Our research supports the hypothesis that invasive species can alter the trophic structure of an environment through addition of detritus and can also potentially impact higher trophic levels by shifting dominance within the invertebrate community to species not widely consumed.

  1. Use of unmanned aerial vehicles for efficient beach litter monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Cecilia

    2018-05-05

    A global beach litter assessment is challenged by use of low-efficiency methodologies and incomparable protocols that impede data integration and acquisition at a national scale. The implementation of an objective, reproducible and efficient approach is therefore required. Here we show the application of a remote sensing based methodology using a test beach located on the Saudi Arabian Red Sea coastline. Litter was recorded via image acquisition from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, while an automatic processing of the high volume of imagery was developed through machine learning, employed for debris detection and classification in three categories. Application of the method resulted in an almost 40 times faster beach coverage when compared to a standard visual-census approach. While the machine learning tool faced some challenges in correctly detecting objects of interest, first classification results are promising and motivate efforts to further develop the technique and implement it at much larger scales.

  2. Advances in poultry litter disposal technology--a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelleher, B P; Leahy, J J; Henihan, A M; O'Dwyer, T F; Sutton, D; Leahy, M J

    2002-05-01

    The land disposal of waste from the poultry industry and subsequent environmental implications has stimulated interest into cleaner and more useful disposal options. The review presented here details advances in the three main alternative disposal routes for poultry litter, specifically in the last decade. Results of experimental investigations into the optimisation of composting, anaerobic digestion and direct combustion are summarised. These technologies open up increased opportunities to market the energy and nutrients in poultry litter to agricultural and non-agricultural uses. Common problems experienced by the current technologies are the existence and fate of nitrogen as ammonia, pH and temperature levels, moisture content and the economics of alternative disposal methods. Further advancement of these technologies is currently receiving increased interest, both academically and commercially. However, significant financial incentives are required to attract the agricultural industry.

  3. Use of unmanned aerial vehicles for efficient beach litter monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Cecilia; Parkes, Stephen; Zhang, Qiannan; Zhang, Xiangliang; McCabe, Matthew; Duarte, Carlos M.

    2018-01-01

    A global beach litter assessment is challenged by use of low-efficiency methodologies and incomparable protocols that impede data integration and acquisition at a national scale. The implementation of an objective, reproducible and efficient approach is therefore required. Here we show the application of a remote sensing based methodology using a test beach located on the Saudi Arabian Red Sea coastline. Litter was recorded via image acquisition from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, while an automatic processing of the high volume of imagery was developed through machine learning, employed for debris detection and classification in three categories. Application of the method resulted in an almost 40 times faster beach coverage when compared to a standard visual-census approach. While the machine learning tool faced some challenges in correctly detecting objects of interest, first classification results are promising and motivate efforts to further develop the technique and implement it at much larger scales.

  4. [Nutritional or secondary hyperparathyroidism in a German shepherd litter].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourens, D C

    1980-06-01

    Nutritional or secondary hyperparathyroidism in a litter of German shepherd dogs is reported. The bitch lost interest in the litter 2 weeks post partum, the owner proceeded to feed the pups on a mainly meat diet (low in calcium) together with whole wheat bread (high in phosphate) until they were presented at Onderstepoort at the age of 6 weeks. Clinically the pups showed poor growth, posterior paresis and pain on palpation of the long bones. Radiological examination revealed decreased bone density and thickness of bone cortices. A diagnosis of nutritional or secondary hyperparathyroidism was made. The diet was corrected and in addition the pups were treated with a balanced supplement of calcium and phosphate with very good clinical response. The pathophysiology of nutritional or secondary hyperparathyroidism as well as ricketts and hypertrophic osteodystrophy as differential diagnoses are discussed.

  5. Maternal-Neonatal Pheromone/Interomone Added to Cat Litter Improves Litter Box Use and Reduces Aggression in Pair-Housed Cats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGlone, John J; Garcia, Arlene; Thompson, William G; Pirner, Glenna M

    2018-03-27

    Introducing a new cat into a household with one or more resident cats can be a significant source of stress for the cats involved. These studies sought to determine if rabbit maternal-neonatal pheromone (2-methyl-2-butenal [2M2B]) in litter impacted cat social behaviors and litter box use. Study 1 determined that cats preferred to eliminate in litter containing 2M2B; other semiochemicals tested did not change litter box use. Cats prone to aggression were identified in an intermediate pilot study, and eight pairs of these cats were selected for Study 2. In Study 2, cat pairs were provided litter containing either vehicle or 2M2B for 24 hours. Cats experiencing control litter displayed more aggression during the first 6 hours (p cats experiencing litter with 2M2B (p = .02). These results suggest 2M2B-infused cat litter may act as an interomone in cats housed domestically to prevent initial occurrences of aggression and may improve cat welfare in multicat households.

  6. Greenhouse gas mitigation using poultry litter management techniques in Bangladesh

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mainali, Brijesh; Emran, Saad Been; Silveira, Semida

    2017-01-01

    Poultry activities have expanded significantly in Bangladesh in recent years. The litter generated from rural poultry farms is often dumped in low ground neighboring areas resulting in greenhouse gas emissions, as well as water and air pollution. This study estimates the GHG emissions of a typical rural layer poultry farm in Bangladesh, and identifies the GHG emissions reduction potential when poultry litter management techniques are used to produce biogas, generating electricity and bio-fertilizer. Life-cycle assessment (LCA) has been used for a systematic evaluation of GHG-emissions considering the local supply chain in a typical rural layer poultry farm. The analysis shows that the GHG-emissions at the poultry farm amount to 1735 KgCO_2_e_q/10000 eggs produced if the litter is untreated. With the installation of an anaerobic digester, the emission intensity could be reduced by 65% if the gas is used to replace LPG for cooking purposes. If 100% digested slurry is utilized as bio-fertilizer, the emissions intensity could be further reduced by 17 times compared to the case without slurry utilization. These results justify the consideration of national programs to improve conditions in poultry farms in Bangladesh. - Highlights: • This study estimates GHG-emissions reduction potential of utilizing poultry litter for energy production in a rural farm. • Energy/mass flow and GHG balances are evaluated considering the local supply chain. • On-farm activities significantly affect GHG emissions among others across the supply chain. • Biogas production and use of slurry as bio-fertilizer significantly reduces the emission intensity. • Results from LCA and sensitivity analysis have been discussed to identify key influential parameters.

  7. Can persuasive and demonstrative messages to visitors reduce littering in river beaches?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cingolani, Ana M; Barberá, Iván; Renison, Daniel; Barri, Fernando R

    2016-12-01

    Littering of public areas is a significant problem worldwide. Here we evaluate the success of persuasive and demonstrative messages at reducing littering in highly visited river beaches in Argentina. We made an intervention at the beaches which consisted of a personalized verbal request asking visitors to take their litter to the waste cans (persuasive message) while they were exposed to the example of picking up the litter already left on the beach (demonstrative message). We conducted 102 observations distributed over 29 dates, two years and four beaches. Each observation consisted of three or four rounds: before the presence of visitors we cleaned the beaches, during the stay of visitors we made the intervention (once or twice) in two out of the four beaches, and early next morning we estimated the amount of litter left per beach. Litter weight ranged from 0 to 53gvisitor -1 day -1 . Littering per visitor was reduced an average of 35% due to the intervention (p=0.049). We also found differences among beaches (p=0.001), and an increase in littering with crowding (p=0.005). We show for the first time that the personalized request combined with the example of picking up litter is effective in reducing littering in a Latin American country. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Increased rainfall variability and N addition accelerate litter decomposition in a restored prairie.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuster, Michael J

    2016-03-01

    Anthropogenic nitrogen deposition and projected increases in rainfall variability (the frequency of drought and heavy rainfall events) are expected to strongly influence ecosystem processes such as litter decomposition. However, how these two global change factors interact to influence litter decomposition is largely unknown. I examined how increased rainfall variability and nitrogen addition affected mass and nitrogen loss of litter from two tallgrass prairie species, Schizachyrium scoparium and Solidago canadensis, and isolated the effects of each during plant growth and during litter decomposition. I increased rainfall variability by consolidating ambient rainfall into larger events and simulated chronic nitrogen deposition using a slow-release urea fertilizer. S. scoparium litter decay was more strongly regulated by the treatments applied during plant growth than by those applied during decomposition. During plant growth, increased rainfall variability resulted in S. scoparium litter that subsequently decomposed more slowly and immobilized more nitrogen than litter grown under ambient conditions, whereas nitrogen addition during plant growth accelerated subsequent mass loss of S. scoparium litter. In contrast, S. canadensis litter mass and N losses were enhanced under either N addition or increased rainfall variability both during plant growth and during decomposition. These results suggest that ongoing changes in rainfall variability and nitrogen availability are accelerating nutrient cycling in tallgrass prairies through their combined effects on litter quality, environmental conditions, and plant community composition.

  9. Decreasing phosphorus runoff losses from land-applied poultry litter with dietary modifications and alum addition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Douglas R; Moore, P A; Miles, D M; Haggard, B E; Daniel, T C

    2004-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) losses from pastures fertilized with poultry litter contribute to the degradation of surface water quality in the United States. Dietary modification and manure amendments may reduce potential P runoff losses from pastures. In the current study, broilers were fed a normal diet, phytase diet, high available phosphorus (HAP) corn diet, or HAP corn + phytase diet. Litter treatments were untreated control and alum added at 10% by weight between flocks. Phytase and HAP corn diets reduced litter dissolved P content in poultry litter by 10 and 35%, respectively, compared with the normal diet (789 mg P kg(-1)). Alum treatment of poultry litter reduced the amount of dissolved P by 47%, while a 74% reduction was noted after alum treatment of litter from the HAP corn + phytase diet. The P concentrations in runoff water were highest from plots receiving poultry litter from the normal diet, whereas plots receiving poultry litter from phytase and HAP corn diets had reduced P concentrations. The addition of alum to the various poultry litters reduced P runoff by 52 to 69%; the greatest reduction occurred when alum was used in conjunction with HAP corn and phytase. This study demonstrates the potential added benefits of using dietary modification in conjunction with manure amendments in poultry operations. Integrators and producers should consider the use of phytase, HAP corn, and alum to reduce potential P losses associated with poultry litter application to pastures.

  10. Forest composition modifies litter dynamics and decomposition in regenerating tropical dry forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schilling, Erik M; Waring, Bonnie G; Schilling, Jonathan S; Powers, Jennifer S

    2016-09-01

    We investigated how forest composition, litter quality, and rainfall interact to affect leaf litter decomposition across three successional tropical dry forests in Costa Rica. We monitored litter stocks and bulk litter turnover in 18 plots that exhibit substantial variation in soil characteristics, tree community structure, fungal communities (including forests dominated by ecto- or arbuscular mycorrhizal host trees), and forest age. Simultaneously, we decomposed three standard litter substrates over a 6-month period spanning an unusually intense drought. Decay rates of standard substrates depended on the interaction between litter identity and forest type. Decomposition rates were correlated with tree and soil fungal community composition as well as soil fertility, but these relationships differed among litter types. In low fertility soils dominated by ectomycorrhizal oak trees, bulk litter turnover rates were low, regardless of soil moisture. By contrast, in higher fertility soils that supported mostly arbuscular mycorrhizal trees, bulk litter decay rates were strongly dependent on seasonal water availability. Both measures of decomposition increased with forest age, as did the frequency of termite-mediated wood decay. Taken together, our results demonstrate that soils and forest age exert strong control over decomposition dynamics in these tropical dry forests, either directly through effects on microclimate and nutrients, or indirectly by affecting tree and microbial community composition and traits, such as litter quality.

  11. Dynamics of microbial communities during decomposition of litter from pioneering plants in initial soil ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Esperschütz

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available In initial ecosystems, concentrations of all macro- and micronutrients can be considered as extremely low. Plant litter therefore strongly influences the development of a degrader's food web and is an important source for C and N input into soil in such ecosystems. In the present study, a 13C litter decomposition field experiment was performed for 30 weeks in initial soils from a post-mining area near the city of Cottbus (Germany. Two of this region's dominant but contrasting pioneering plant species (Lotus corniculatus L. and Calamagrostis epigejos L. were chosen to investigate the effects of litter quality on the litter decomposing microbial food web in initially nutrient-poor substrates. The results clearly indicate the importance of litter quality, as indicated by its N content, its bioavailability for the degradation process and the development of microbial communities in the detritusphere and soil. The degradation of the L. corniculatus litter, which had a low C / N ratio, was fast and showed pronounced changes in the microbial community structure 1–4 weeks after litter addition. The degradation of the C. epigejos litter material was slow and microbial community changes mainly occurred between 4 and 30 weeks after litter addition to the soil. However, for both litter materials a clear indication of the importance of fungi for the degradation process was observed both in terms of fungal abundance and activity (13C incorporation activity

  12. Links between plant litter chemistry, species diversity, and below-ground ecosystem function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Courtney L; Bowman, William D

    2008-12-16

    Decomposition is a critical source of plant nutrients, and drives the largest flux of terrestrial C to the atmosphere. Decomposing soil organic matter typically contains litter from multiple plant species, yet we lack a mechanistic understanding of how species diversity influences decomposition processes. Here, we show that soil C and N cycling during decomposition are controlled by the composition and diversity of chemical compounds within plant litter mixtures, rather than by simple metrics of plant species diversity. We amended native soils with litter mixtures containing up to 4 alpine plant species, and we used 9 litter chemical traits to evaluate the chemical composition (i.e., the identity and quantity of compounds) and chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. The chemical composition of the litter mixtures was the strongest predictor of soil respiration, net N mineralization, and microbial biomass N. Soil respiration and net N mineralization rates were also significantly correlated with the chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. In contrast, soil C and N cycling rates were poorly correlated with plant species richness, and there was no relationship between species richness and the chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. These results indicate that the composition and diversity of chemical compounds in litter are potentially important functional traits affecting decomposition, and simple metrics like plant species richness may fail to capture variation in these traits. Litter chemical traits therefore provide a mechanistic link between organisms, species diversity, and key components of below-ground ecosystem function.

  13. From pasture grass to cattle milk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miyamoto, Susumu

    1979-01-01

    Iodine-131 is one of the important fission products since it is selectively accumulated in the thyroid gland of man. The transfer of this isotope from contaminated grass to cows' milk is therefore of particular importance since milk is a major constituent of the diet especially for infants. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the transfer rate of this isotope from grass to milk of lactuating cows and its distribution in milk. It is said that the orally administered iodide is rapidly absorbed through the rumen wall and excreted mainly to urine. The absorbed iodine is accumulated highly in the thyroid gland and the considerable amount is secreted to milk. Garner et al. showed that about 5% of a dose of 131 I was found in the milk within 7 days. The extremes were 1.43 to 16.4%. Present author obtained that 18 - 30% of the dosed 131 I was secreted into milk within 7 days, indicating somewhat higher transfer rate than that of Garner et al. It was reported that more than 90% of 131 I was found in milk serum in the ionic form. The countermeasures for diminishing 131 I in milk were also presented. (author)

  14. Genetic modification of wetland grasses for phytoremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Czako, M.; Liang Dali; Marton, L. [Dept. of Biological Sciences, Univ. of South Carolina, Columbia, SC (United States); Feng Xianzhong; He Yuke [National Lab. of Plant Molecular Genetics, Shanghai Inst. of Plant Physiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, SH (China)

    2005-04-01

    Wetland grasses and grass-like monocots are very important natural remediators of pollutants. Their genetic improvement is an important task because introduction of key transgenes can dramatically improve their remediation potential. Tissue culture is prerequisite for genetic manipulation, and methods are reported here for in vitro culture and micropropagation of a number of wetland plants of various ecological requirements such as salt marsh, brackish water, riverbanks, and various zones of lakes and ponds, and bogs. The monocots represent numerous genera in various families such as Poaceae, Cyperaceae, Juncaceae, and Typhaceae. The reported species are in various stages of micropropagation and Arundo donax is scaled for mass propagation for selecting elite lines for pytoremediation. Transfer of key genes for mercury phytoremediation into the salt marsh cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) is also reported here. All but one transgenic lines contained both the organomercurial lyase (merB) and mercuric reductase (merA) sequences showing that co-introduction into Spartina of two genes from separate Agrobacterium strains is possible. (orig.)

  15. Elephant grass clones for silage production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rerisson José Cipriano dos Santos

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Ensiling warm-season grasses often requires wilting due to their high moisture content, and the presence of low-soluble sugars in these grasses usually demands the use of additives during the ensiling process. This study evaluated the bromatological composition of the fodder and silage from five Pennisetum sp. clones (IPA HV 241, IPA/UFRPE Taiwan A-146 2.114, IPA/UFRPE Taiwan A-146 2.37, Elephant B, and Mott. The contents of 20 Polyvinyl chloride (PVC silos, which were opened after 90 days of storage, were used for the bromatological analysis and the evaluation of the pH, nitrogen, ammonia, buffer capacity, soluble carbohydrates, and fermentation coefficients. The effluent losses, gases and dry matter recovery were also calculated. Although differences were observed among the clones (p < 0.05 for the concentrations of dry matter, insoluble nitrogen in acid detergents, insoluble nitrogen in neutral detergents, soluble carbohydrates, fermentation coefficients, and in vitro digestibility in the forage before ensiling, no differences were observed for most of these variables after ensiling. All of the clones were efficient in the fermentation process. The IPA/UFRPE TAIWAN A-146 2.37 clone, however, presented a higher dry matter concentration and the best fermentation coefficient, resulting in a better silage quality, compared to the other clones.

  16. The effect of leaf litter cover on surface runoff and soil erosion in Northern China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiang Li

    Full Text Available The role of leaf litter in hydrological processes and soil erosion of forest ecosystems is poorly understood. A field experiment was conducted under simulated rainfall in runoff plots with a slope of 10%. Two common types of litter in North China (from Quercus variabilis, representing broadleaf litter, and Pinus tabulaeformis, representing needle leaf litter, four amounts of litter, and five rainfall intensities were tested. Results revealed that the litter reduced runoff and delayed the beginning of runoff, but significantly reduced soil loss (p<0.05. Average runoff yield was 29.5% and 31.3% less than bare-soil plot, and for Q. variabilis and P. tabulaeformis, respectively, and average sediment yield was 85.1% and 79.9% lower. Rainfall intensity significantly affected runoff (R = 0.99, p<0.05, and the efficiency in runoff reduction by litter decreased considerably. Runoff yield and the runoff coefficient increased dramatically by 72.9 and 5.4 times, respectively. The period of time before runoff appeared decreased approximately 96.7% when rainfall intensity increased from 5.7 to 75.6 mm h-1. Broadleaf and needle leaf litter showed similarly relevant effects on runoff and soil erosion control, since no significant differences (p≤0.05 were observed in runoff and sediment variables between two litter-covered plots. In contrast, litter mass was probably not a main factor in determining runoff and sediment because a significant correlation was found only with sediment in Q. variabilis litter plot. Finally, runoff yield was significantly correlated (p<0.05 with sediment yield. These results suggest that the protective role of leaf litter in runoff and erosion processes was crucial, and both rainfall intensity and litter characteristics had an impact on these processes.

  17. Influence of different litter materials on cecal microbiota colonization in broiler chickens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torok, V A; Hughes, R J; Ophel-Keller, K; Ali, M; Macalpine, R

    2009-12-01

    A chicken growth study was conducted to determine if litter type influenced gut microbiota and performance in broilers. Seven bedding materials were investigated and included soft and hardwood sawdust, softwood shavings, shredded paper, chopped straw, rice hulls, and reused softwood shavings. Microbial profiling was done to investigate changes in cecal bacterial communities associated with litter material and age. Cecal microbiota were investigated at 14 and 28 d of age (n = 12 birds/litter material). At both ages, the cecal microbiota of chickens raised on reused litter was significantly (P litter materials, except softwood shavings at d 28. Cecal microbiota was also significantly different between birds raised on shredded paper and rice hulls at both ages. Age had a significant influence on cecal microbiota composition regardless of litter material. Similarity in cecal microbial communities among birds raised on the same litter treatment was greater at 28 d of age (29 to 40%) than at 14 d of age (25 to 32%). Bird performance on the different litter materials was measured by feed conversion ratio, live weight, and feed intake. Significant (P litter materials. However, no significant (P > 0.05) differences were observed in feed conversion ratio among birds raised on any of the 7 different litter materials at either 14 or 28 d of age. The type of litter material can influence colonization and development of cecal microbiota in chickens. Litter-induced changes in the gut microbiota may be partially responsible for some of the significant differences observed in early rates of growth; therefore, litter choice may have an important role in poultry gut health particularly in the absence of in-feed antibiotics.

  18. Leaf litter production of mahogany along street and campus forest of Universitas Negeri Semarang, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, F. P.; Abdullah, M.; Solichin; Hadiyanti, L. N.; Widianingrum, K.

    2018-03-01

    The leaf litter of trees along the existing streets on campus UNNES if not managed properly will be scattered and become garbage. Leaf litter Production in UNNES campus is not known for certain. UNNES does not own mapping of leaf litter Production of dominant tree species on campus. This cause leaf waste management is not optimal yet. There is still a lot of leaf litter that is discharged (not processed) because it exceeds the capacity of the fertilizer production equipment in the compost house. Aims of this study were to examine leaf litter production of dominant trees in Universitas Negeri Semarang and evaluate the relationship between leaf litter and average rainfall. Purposive sampling method placed pouches of nylon gauze measuring 1 × 1 mm2 as litter trap container with size 1 x l m2 (10 points mounted along street and campus forest). Litter trap mounted at the height of 50 cm above ground level. Leaf litter will be taken once a week for three months to observe the litter production. The litter was then dried by the oven at 70 ° C for 48 hours to obtain constant dry weight. Based on the results of the research, it was known that Mahogany tree in UNNES campus area has the potential to produce the litter of about 10 ton/ha / 3months in campus forest area and 2.5 ton/ha / 3months along campus street. There is a significant relationship between litter production of Mahogany leaves and precipitation during August - October 2017.

  19. Titration and Spectroscopic Measurements of Poultry Litter pH Buffering Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassity-Duffey, Kate; Cabrera, Miguel; Mowrer, Jake; Kissel, David

    2015-07-01

    The pH value of poultry litter is affected by nitrification, mineralization, and the addition of acidifying chemicals, all acting on the poultry litter pH buffering capacity (pHBC). Increased understanding of poultry litter pHBC will aid in modeling NH volatilization from surface-applied poultry litter as well as estimating rates of alum applications. Our objectives were to (i) determine the pHBC of a wide range of poultry litters; (ii) assess the accuracy of near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) for determining poultry litter pHBC; and (iii) demonstrate the use of poultry litter pHBC to increase the accuracy of alum additions. Litter pHBC was determined by titration and calculated from linear and sigmoidal curves. For the 37 litters measured, linear pHBC ranged from 187 to 537 mmol (pH unit) kg dry litter. The linear and sigmoidal curves provided accurate predictions of pHBC, with most > 0.90. Results from NIRS analysis showed that the linear pHBC expressed on an "as is" water content basis had a NIRS coefficient of calibration (developed using a modified partial least squares procedure) of 0.90 for the 37 poultry litters measured. Using the litter pHBC, an empirical model was derived to determine the amount of alum needed to create a target pH. The model performed well in the range of pH 6.5 to 7.5 (RMSE = 0.07) but underpredicted the amount of alum needed to reach pH litter, which prevented its hydrolysis. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  20. Impact if hyperprolific line of litter size in multiplication herd

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zdeněk Tvrdoň

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The hyperprolific line is considered to be maximally effective in pursuit of progress in sow’s reproduction. Hyperprolific line efficiency is commonly evaluated in regard of breeding herd progress. We decided to study how effective it is with respect to increasing of litter size in multiplication herd. Our study is specific by using the data from practice, concretely it is based on the information about the ancestor of sows in multiplication herd. The ancestors could be the member either hyperprolific line or normal line. The information about performances of sows breed in multiplication herd was known. The mixed linear models in SAS for Windows 9.1.2. were conducted to statistical analysis. Our results indicated that no significant effect on litter size was achieved by selection criteria used in the hyperprolific line creation. In studied population no differences between TNB, NBA or NW were found on the 1st as well as on the 1st–5th litters. As we have mentioned above, the study is specific by using the data from practice. Therefore the studied population size is limited. It is necessary to take into consideration when the results are applied. Nevertheless, the results shown that other studies with larger population should be done to reevaluate the selection criteria.

  1. Species-specific effects of live roots and shoot litter on soil decomposer abundances do not forecast plant litter-nitrogen uptake

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saj, Stéphane; Mikola, Juha; Ekelund, Flemming

    2009-01-01

    and bacterial- and fungal-feeding nematodes did not differ between the live plants, litter-N uptake differed, with Holcus being the most efficient compared to Plantago and Lotus. Hence, although microbes and their feeders unquestionably control N mineralization in the soil, and their growth differs among plant......Plant species produce litter of varying quality and differ in the quality and quantity of compounds they release from live roots, which both can induce different decomposer growth in the soil. To test whether differences in decomposer growth can forecast the amount of N species acquire from plant...... litter, as suggested by theory, we grew individuals of three grassland plants-Holcus lanatus, Plantago lanceolata and Lotus corniculatus-in soils into which (15)N-labelled litter of either Holcus, Plantago or Lotus was added. We measured the effects of live roots and litter of each species on soil...

  2. Growing C4 perennial grass for bioenergy using a new Agro-BGC ecosystem model

    Science.gov (United States)

    di Vittorio, A. V.; Anderson, R. S.; Miller, N. L.; Running, S. W.

    2009-12-01

    Accurate, spatially gridded estimates of bioenergy crop yields require 1) biophysically accurate crop growth models and 2) careful parameterization of unavailable inputs to these models. To meet the first requirement we have added the capacity to simulate C4 perennial grass as a bioenergy crop to the Biome-BGC ecosystem model. This new model, hereafter referred to as Agro-BGC, includes enzyme driven C4 photosynthesis, individual live and dead leaf, stem, and root carbon/nitrogen pools, separate senescence and litter fall processes, fruit growth, optional annual seeding, flood irrigation, a growing degree day phenology with a killing frost option, and a disturbance handler that effectively simulates fertilization, harvest, fire, and incremental irrigation. There are four Agro-BGC vegetation parameters that are unavailable for Panicum virgatum (switchgrass), and to meet the second requirement we have optimized the model across multiple calibration sites to obtain representative values for these parameters. We have verified simulated switchgrass yields against observations at three non-calibration sites in IL. Agro-BGC simulates switchgrass growth and yield at harvest very well at a single site. Our results suggest that a multi-site optimization scheme would be adequate for producing regional-scale estimates of bioenergy crop yields on high spatial resolution grids.

  3. Parallel evolution of mound-building and grass-feeding in Australian nasute termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arab, Daej A; Namyatova, Anna; Evans, Theodore A; Cameron, Stephen L; Yeates, David K; Ho, Simon Y W; Lo, Nathan

    2017-02-01

    Termite mounds built by representatives of the family Termitidae are among the most spectacular constructions in the animal kingdom, reaching 6-8 m in height and housing millions of individuals. Although functional aspects of these structures are well studied, their evolutionary origins remain poorly understood. Australian representatives of the termitid subfamily Nasutitermitinae display a wide variety of nesting habits, making them an ideal group for investigating the evolution of mound building. Because they feed on a variety of substrates, they also provide an opportunity to illuminate the evolution of termite diets. Here, we investigate the evolution of termitid mound building and diet, through a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of Australian Nasutitermitinae. Molecular dating analysis indicates that the subfamily has colonized Australia on three occasions over the past approximately 20 Myr. Ancestral-state reconstruction showed that mound building arose on multiple occasions and from diverse ancestral nesting habits, including arboreal and wood or soil nesting. Grass feeding appears to have evolved from wood feeding via ancestors that fed on both wood and leaf litter. Our results underscore the adaptability of termites to ancient environmental change, and provide novel examples of parallel evolution of extended phenotypes. © 2017 The Author(s).

  4. Susceptibility of eastern U.S. habitats to invasion of Celastrus orbiculatus (oriental bittersweet) following fire

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    Fire effects on invasive species are an important land management issue in areas subjected to prescribed fires as well as wildfires. These effects on invasive species can be manifested across life stages. The liana Celastrus orbiculatus (oriental bittersweet) is a widespread invader of eastern US habitats including those where fire management is in practice. This study examined if prescribed fire makes these habitats more susceptible to invasion of C. orbiculatus by seed at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Four treatments (control, litter removed, high and low intensity fire) were applied in six habitat types (sand savanna/woodland, sand prairie, moraine prairie, sand oak forest, beech-maple forest, and oak-hickory forest) and germinating seedlings were tracked over two growing seasons. Treatment did not have a significant effect on the germination, survival, or biomass of C. orbiculatus. However, habitat type did influence these responses mostly in the first growing season. Moraine prairie, beech-maple forest, and oak-hickory forests had the greatest peak percentage of germinants. Moraine prairie had significantly greater survival than oak forest and savanna habitats. Control plots with intact litter, and the moraine prairie habitat had the tallest seedlings at germination, while tallest final heights and greatest aboveground biomass were highest in oak forest. Thus, fire and litter removal did not increase the susceptibility of these habitats to germination and survival of C. orbiculatus. These results indicate that most eastern US habitats are vulnerable to invasion by this species via seed regardless of the level or type of disturbance to the litter layer.

  5. Decomposition of Arachis pintoi and Hyparrhenia rufa litters in monoculture and intercropped systems under lowland soil Decomposição da serrapilheira de Arachis pintoi e Hyparrhenia rufa em sistemas de monocultura e consórcio sob solo de várzea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christiane Abreu de Oliveira

    2003-09-01

    Full Text Available Tropical grasslands under lowland soils are generally underutilized and the litter of forage legumes may be used to recover these degraded pastures. The objective of this work was to study the dynamics of litter decomposition of Arachis pintoi (pinto peanut, Hyparrhenia rufa (thatching grass and a mixture of both species in a lowland soil. These treatments were analyzed in three areas: grass monoculture, legume monoculture and legume intercropped with the grass during the dry and wet seasons. Litter bags containing the legume, grass or a mixture of both species were incubated to estimate the decomposition rate and microorganism colonization. Decomposition constants (K and litter half-lives (T1/2 were estimated by an exponential model whereas number of microorganisms in specific media were determined by plate dilution. The decomposition rate, release of nutrients and microorganisms number, especially bacteria, increased when pinto peanut was added to thatching grass, influenced by favorable lignin/N and C/N ratios in legume litter. When pinto peanut litter was incubated in the grass plots, 50% N and P was released within about 135 days in the dry season and in the wet season, the equivalent release occurred within 20 days. These results indicate that A. pintoi has a great potential for nutrient recycling via litter and can be used to recover degraded areas.Pastagens tropicais sobre solos de várzea são geralmente subutilizadas. A serrapilheira de leguminosas forrageiras pode ser usada para a recuperação destas pastagens. O objetivo deste trabalho foi estudar a dinâmica de decomposição de Arachis pintoi (arachis, Hyparrhenia rufa (capim jaraguá e da mistura destas espécies, em solo de várzea. Estes tratamentos foram analisados em três áreas: monocultivo da gramínea; monocultivo da leguminosa e no consórcio entre as espécies durante as estações seca e chuvosa. Sacos de decomposição contendo a serrapilheira da leguminosa ou da

  6. Perennial Grass Bioenergy Cropping on Wet Marginal Land

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Das, Srabani; Teuffer, Karin; Stoof, Cathelijne R.; Walter, Michael F.; Walter, M.T.; Steenhuis, Tammo S.; Richards, Brian K.

    2018-01-01

    The control of soil moisture, vegetation type, and prior land use on soil health parameters of perennial grass cropping systems on marginal lands is not well known. A fallow wetness-prone marginal site in New York (USA) was converted to perennial grass bioenergy feedstock production. Quadruplicate

  7. No positive feedback between fire and a nonnative perennial grass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erika L. Geiger; Guy R. McPherson

    2005-01-01

    Semi-desert grasslands flank the “Sky Island” mountains in southern Arizona and Northern Mexico. Many of these grasslands are dominated by nonnative grasses, which potentially alter native biotic communities. One specific concern is the potential for a predicted feedback between nonnative grasses and fire. In a large-scale experiment in southern Arizona we investigated...

  8. Analysis of Fusarium causing dermal toxicosis in marram grass planters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Snijders, CHA; Samson, RA; Hoekstra, ES; Ouellet, T; Miller, JD; deRooijvanderGoes, PCEM; Baar, AJM; Dubois, AEJ; Kauffman, HF

    1996-01-01

    In the European coastal dunes, marram grass (Ammophila arenaria) is planted in order to control sand erosion. In the years 1986 to 1991, workers on the Wadden islands in the Netherlands planting marram grass showed lesions of skin and mucous membranes, suggesting a toxic reaction. Fusarium culmorum

  9. Conceptual model for reinforced grass on inner dike slopes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhagen, H.J.; ComCoast

    2005-01-01

    A desk study has been carried out in order to develop a conceptual model for the erosion of inner dike slopes with reinforced grass cover. Based on the results the following can be concluded: The presence of a geosynthetic in a grass slope can be taken into account in the EPM method by increasing

  10. Grass defoliation affecting survival and growth of seedlings of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Two experiments were conducted, one in the field and the other in the greenhouse, to investigate the effects of the intensity and frequency of grass defoliation on the survival and growth of Acacia karroo seedlings. In the greenhouse, seedlings growing with heavily clipped grasses had higher biomass production than those ...

  11. Defoliation effects of perennial grasses – continuing confusion | DL ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Although an adequate knowledge of growth patterns and defoliation effects in perennial grasses is a prerequisite for the rational use of veld and pastures for animal production, our knowledge of this subject is far from adequate. The results of various physiological and clipping studies on tropical and sub-tropical grasses are ...

  12. MACRO NUTRIENTS UPTAKE OF FORAGE GRASSES AT DIFFERENT SALINITY STRESSES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Kusmiyati

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The high concentration of sodium chloride (NaCl in saline soils has negative effects on the growth ofmost plants. The experiment was designed to evaluate macro nutrient uptake (Nitrogen, Phosphorus andPotassium of forage grasses at different NaCl concentrations in growth media. The experiment wasconducted in a greenhouse at Forage Crops Laboratory of Animal Agriculture Faculty, Diponegoro University.Split plot design was used to arrange the experiment. The main plot was forage grasses (Elephant grass(Pennisetum purpureum and King grass (Pennisetum hybrida. The sub plot was NaCl concentrationin growth media (0, 150, and 300 mM. The nitrogen (N, phosphorus (P and potassium (K uptake in shootand root of plant were measured. The result indicated increasing NaCl concentration in growth mediasignificantly decreased the N, P and K uptake in root and shoot of the elephant grass and king grass. Thepercentage reduction percentage of N, P and K uptake at 150 mM and 300 mM were high in elephant grassand king grass. It can be concluded that based on nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium uptake, elephantgrass and king grass are not tolerant to strong and very strong saline soil.

  13. Lessons learned in managing alfalfa-grass mixtures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grass-alfalfa mixtures have a number of benefits that make them attractive to producers. However, they can be problematic to establish and maintain. Research programs have made progress in understanding the benefits and challenges of alfalfa-grass mixtures. Mixtures may have greater winter survival ...

  14. Agricultural field reclamation utilizing native grass crop production

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. Cure

    2013-01-01

    Developing a method of agricultural field reclamation to native grasses in the Lower San Pedro Watershed could prove to be a valuable tool for educational and practical purposes. Agricultural field reclamation utilizing native grass crop production will address water table depletion, soil degradation and the economic viability of the communities within the watershed....

  15. Effect of grass species on NDF ruminal degradability and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    uzivatel

    Abstract. The objective of this study was to compare the ruminal degradability of neutral detergent fibre (NDF) .... Felina were evaluated in the present study. The grass was harvested from the primary growth of monocultured grasses on 19 and 26 May of 2004 and 27 May and 10 ...... Nutritional Ecology of the Ruminant.

  16. Seed production and establishment of western Oregon native grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale C. Darris

    2005-01-01

    It is well understood that native grasses are ecologically important and provide numerous benefits. However, unfavorable economics, low seed yields for some species, genetic issues, and a lack of experience behind the production and establishment of most western Oregon native grasses remain significant impediments for their expanded use. By necessity, adaptation of...

  17. Analysis of Some Heavy Metals in Grass ( Paspalum Orbiculare ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The increased deposition of trace metals from vehicle exhausts on plants has raised concerns about the risks of the quality of food consumed by humans since the heavy metals emitted through the exhaust by vehicles can enter food chain through deposition on grass grazed by animals. Grass (Paspalum Orbiculare) and ...

  18. Identification of grazed grasses using epidermal characters | R ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The use of anatomical features of the abaxial epidermis of grasses is discussed for the identification of fragments of epidermis present in samples of rumen. The reliability of this technique, and the variation of the epidermal characters in two widely distributed species of grass, is given. A "Key" to identity certain genera of ...

  19. Spreaders, igniters, and burning shrubs: plant flammability explains novel fire dynamics in grass-invaded deserts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuentes-Ramirez, Andres; Veldman, Joseph W; Holzapfel, Claus; Moloney, Kirk A

    2016-10-01

    Novel fire regimes are an important cause and consequence of global environmental change that involve interactions among biotic, climatic, and human components of ecosystems. Plant flammability is key to these interactions, yet few studies directly measure flammability or consider how multiple species with different flammabilities interact to produce novel fire regimes. Deserts of the southwestern United States are an ideal system for exploring how novel fire regimes can emerge when fire-promoting species invade ecosystems comprised of species that did not evolve with fire. In these deserts, exotic annual grasses provide fuel continuity across landscapes that did not historically burn. These fires often ignite a keystone desert shrub, the fire-intolerant creosote bush, Larrea tridentata (DC.) Coville. Ignition of Larrea is likely catalyzed by fuels produced by native plants that grow beneath the shrubs. We hypothesize that invasive and native species exhibit distinct flammability characteristics that in combination determine spatial patterns of fire spread and intensity. We measured flammability metrics of Larrea, two invasive grasses, Schismus arabicus and Bromus madritensis, and two native plants, the sub-shrub Ambrosia dumosa and the annual herb Amsinckia menziesii. Results of laboratory experiments show that the grasses carry fire quickly (1.32 cm/s), but burn for short duration (0.5 min) at low temperatures. In contrast, native plants spread fire slowly (0.12 cm/s), but burn up to eight times longer (4 min) and produced hotter fires. Additional experiments on the ignition requirements of Larrea suggest that native plants burn with sufficient temperature and duration to ignite dead Larrea branches (time to ignition, 2 min; temperature at ignition 692°C). Once burning, these dead branches ignite living branches in the upper portions of the shrub. Our study provides support for a conceptual model in which exotic grasses are "spreaders" of fire and native

  20. Native Grass Community Management Plan for the Oak Ridge Reservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ryon, Michael G [ORNL; Parr, Patricia Dreyer [ORNL; Cohen, Kari [ORNL

    2007-06-01

    Land managers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory in East Tennessee are restoring native warm-season grasses and wildflowers to various sites across the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR). Some of the numerous benefits to planting native grasses and forbs include improved habitat quality for wildlife, improved aesthetic values, lower long-term maintenance costs, and compliance with Executive Order 13112 (Clinton 1999). Challenges to restoring native plants on the ORR include the need to gain experience in establishing and maintaining these communities and the potentially greater up-front costs of getting native grasses established. The goals of the native grass program are generally outlined on a fiscal-year basis. An overview of some of the issues associated with the successful and cost-effective establishment and maintenance of native grass and wildflower stands on the ORR is presented in this report.

  1. Establishing native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barnes, T.G.; Larkin, J.L.; Arnett, M.B. [Univ. of Kentucky, Lexington, KY (United States). Dept. of Forestry

    1998-12-31

    The authors evaluated various methods of establishing native warm season grasses on two reclaimed Eastern Kentucky mines from 1994--1997. Most current reclamation practices incorporate the use of tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) and other cool-season grasses/legumes that provide little wildlife habitats. The use of native warm season grasses will likely improve wildlife habitat on reclaimed strip mines. Objectives of this study were to compare the feasibility of establishing these grasses during fall, winter, or spring using a native rangeland seeder or hydroseeding; a fertilizer application at planting; or cold-moist stratification prior to hydroseeding. Vegetative cover, bare ground, species richness, and biomass samples were collected at the end of each growing season. Native warm season grass plantings had higher plant species richness compared to cool-season reclamation mixtures. There was no difference in establishment of native warm season grasses as a result of fertilization or seeding technique. Winter native warm season grass plantings were failures and cold-moist stratification did not increase plant establishment during any season. As a result of a drought during 1997, both cool-season and warm season plantings were failures. Cool-season reclamation mixtures had significantly more vegetative cover and biomass compared to native warm season grass mixtures and the native warm season grass plantings did not meet vegetative cover requirements for bond release. Forbs and legumes that established well included pale purple coneflower (Echinacea pallida), lance-leaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata), round-headed lespedeza (Lespedeza capitata), partridge pea (Cassia fasiculata), black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta), butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa), and bergamot (Monarda fistulosa). Results from two demonstration plots next to research plots indicate it is possible to establish native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines for wildlife habitat.

  2. Establishing native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barnes, T.G.; Larkin, J.L.; Arnett, M.B.

    1998-01-01

    The authors evaluated various methods of establishing native warm season grasses on two reclaimed Eastern Kentucky mines from 1994--1997. Most current reclamation practices incorporate the use of tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) and other cool-season grasses/legumes that provide little wildlife habitats. The use of native warm season grasses will likely improve wildlife habitat on reclaimed strip mines. Objectives of this study were to compare the feasibility of establishing these grasses during fall, winter, or spring using a native rangeland seeder or hydroseeding; a fertilizer application at planting; or cold-moist stratification prior to hydroseeding. Vegetative cover, bare ground, species richness, and biomass samples were collected at the end of each growing season. Native warm season grass plantings had higher plant species richness compared to cool-season reclamation mixtures. There was no difference in establishment of native warm season grasses as a result of fertilization or seeding technique. Winter native warm season grass plantings were failures and cold-moist stratification did not increase plant establishment during any season. As a result of a drought during 1997, both cool-season and warm season plantings were failures. Cool-season reclamation mixtures had significantly more vegetative cover and biomass compared to native warm season grass mixtures and the native warm season grass plantings did not meet vegetative cover requirements for bond release. Forbs and legumes that established well included pale purple coneflower (Echinacea pallida), lance-leaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata), round-headed lespedeza (Lespedeza capitata), partridge pea (Cassia fasiculata), black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta), butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa), and bergamot (Monarda fistulosa). Results from two demonstration plots next to research plots indicate it is possible to establish native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines for wildlife habitat

  3. Long-term marine litter monitoring in the remote Great Australian Bight, South Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edyvane, K S; Dalgetty, A; Hone, P W; Higham, J S; Wace, N M

    2004-06-01

    The Anxious Bay beach litter clearance is the longest running annual survey of ocean-based litter in Australia. It's remoteness from centres of human population and location (with respect to prevailing winds and currents) make it an ideal place for monitoring ocean or ship-based litter in Australia's southern oceans and particularly, the Great Australian Bight. Over the 1991-1999 period, a large but gradual decline in the amount of beach washed litter was recorded (with minor peaks recorded during the 1992 and 1994 surveys). Beach washed litter decreased by approximately 86%, from 344 kg recorded in 1991 (13.2 kg/km) to 49 kg in 1999 (i.e. 1.9 kg/km), reaching a maximum of 390 kg in 1992 (or 15 kg/km of beach). However, a sharp increase in litter was recorded in 2000 (i.e. 252 kg or 9.7 kg/km). This increase in litter yield in 2000 is probably due to stronger than average onshore surface flow (or Ekman Transport) in the western Eyre Peninsula and Bight region. Prior to the survey in 2000, the results appeared to indicate that ocean litter on Anxious Bay beach was beginning to level out at around 50-70 kg/year (i.e. 2-3 kg/km). As the beach surveys involve the assumption that the beach is completely cleared of litter, this may represent a baseline level for ocean-based litter in the region. The yields and type of litter collected from the annual survey indicates that the majority of litter washed ashore originates from commercial fishing activities within the Great Australian Bight. Most of the fishing-related litter was directly sourced to the Southern Rock Lobster Fishery (i.e. bait buckets, baskets, pots), the Great Australian Bight Trawl Fishery (i.e. codends, trawl nets) and the Southern Shark Fishery (i.e. monofilament gillnets and longlines). Between 1994 and 1999, large reductions were observed in the amount of bait straps (77% reduction), lobster bait baskets/buckets (86% reduction), nets/ropes (62% reduction) and floats/buoys (83% reduction). Significantly

  4. Litter Dynamics in a Forest Dune at Restinga da Marambaia, RJ, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Camara

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Restingas are extremely degraded, tropical sandy ecosystems and are poorly studied in terms of nutrient cycling. The present study aimed to evaluate litter dynamics in a forest dune at Restinga da Marambaia, RJ. Litterfall was collected monthly using two parallel transects installed 200 m apart from each other with 15 litter traps (0.25 m2, over two consecutive years. The litterfall was sorted into leaves, twigs, flowers, fruits, and refuse. Litter decomposition was evaluated by the ratio between litterfall and litter layer on the soil surface, which was estimated every four months by quadrats (0.25 m2 placed next to the litter traps. The average annual litterfall was low (6.8 t ha-1 year-1 , mostly constituted by leaves (70%, with the greatest deposits occurring during the rainy season. The decomposition rate was low (0.85 and the turnover time was long (439 days. This litter dynamic contributes to the nutrient economy.

  5. Rumen escape protein in grass and grass silage deterimened with a nylon bag and an enzymatic technique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cone, J.W.; Gelder, van A.H.; Mathijssen-Kamman, A.A.; Hindle, V.A.

    2004-01-01

    Rumen escape protein (REP) was determined for six grasses and 16 grass silages using a nylon bag technique and an in vitro technique using a proteolytic enzyme preparation of Streptomyces griseus. In vitro, the samples were incubated for 0, 1, 6 and 24 h. The highest correlation observed between

  6. EroGRASS : Failure of grass cover layers at seaward and shoreward dike slopes. design, construction and performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhagen, H.J.; Verheij, H.J.; Cao, T.M.; Dassanayake, D.; Roelvink, D.; Piontkowitz, T.

    2009-01-01

    A large number of the dikes in the North Sea and Baltic Sea regions are covered with grass that is exposed to hydraulic loading from waves and currents during storm surges. During previous storm surges the grass cover layers often showed large strength and remained undamaged. A clear physical

  7. Allelopathic activity and chemical constituents of walnut (Juglans regia) leaf litter in walnut-winter vegetable agroforestry system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qian; Xu, Zheng; Hu, Tingxing; Rehman, Hafeez Ur; Chen, Hong; Li, Zhongbin; Ding, Bo; Hu, Hongling

    2014-01-01

    Walnut agroforestry systems have many ecological and economic benefits when intercropped with cool-season species. However, decomposing leaf litter is one of the main sources of allelochemicals in such systems. In this study, lettuce (Lactuca sativa var. angustata) was grown in the soil incorporated with walnut leaf litter to assess its allelopathic activity. Lettuce growth and physiological processes were inhibited by walnut leaf litter, especially during early growth stage (1-2 euphylla period) or with large amount of litter addition. The plants treated by small amount of leaf litter recovered their growth afterwards, while the inhibition for 180 g leaf litter persisted until harvest. Twenty-eight compounds were identified in the leaf litter, and several of them were reported to be phytotoxic, which may be responsible for the stress induced by walnut leaf litter. Thus, for highest economic value of vegetables such as lettuce, excessive incorporation of leaf litter should be discouraged.

  8. Leaf litter decomposition rates increase with rising mean annual temperature in Hawaiian tropical montane wet forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lori D. Bothwell

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Decomposing litter in forest ecosystems supplies nutrients to plants, carbon to heterotrophic soil microorganisms and is a large source of CO2 to the atmosphere. Despite its essential role in carbon and nutrient cycling, the temperature sensitivity of leaf litter decay in tropical forest ecosystems remains poorly resolved, especially in tropical montane wet forests where the warming trend may be amplified compared to tropical wet forests at lower elevations. We quantified leaf litter decomposition rates along a highly constrained 5.2 °C mean annual temperature (MAT gradient in tropical montane wet forests on the Island of Hawaii. Dominant vegetation, substrate type and age, soil moisture, and disturbance history are all nearly constant across this gradient, allowing us to isolate the effect of rising MAT on leaf litter decomposition and nutrient release. Leaf litter decomposition rates were a positive linear function of MAT, causing the residence time of leaf litter on the forest floor to decline by ∼31 days for each 1 °C increase in MAT. Our estimate of the Q10 temperature coefficient for leaf litter decomposition was 2.17, within the commonly reported range for heterotrophic organic matter decomposition (1.5–2.5 across a broad range of ecosystems. The percentage of leaf litter nitrogen (N remaining after six months declined linearly with increasing MAT from ∼88% of initial N at the coolest site to ∼74% at the warmest site. The lack of net N immobilization during all three litter collection periods at all MAT plots indicates that N was not limiting to leaf litter decomposition, regardless of temperature. These results suggest that leaf litter decay in tropical montane wet forests may be more sensitive to rising MAT than in tropical lowland wet forests, and that increased rates of N release from decomposing litter could delay or prevent progressive N limitation to net primary productivity with climate warming.

  9. Experimental evidence that litter size imposes an oxidative challenge to offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Alyssa B; Garratt, Michael; Brooks, Robert C

    2015-12-01

    The post-natal environment in which young develop can substantially impact development, adult phenotype and fitness. In wild mice, competition among litter-mates affects development rate and adult behaviour. We manipulated post-natal litter size in a cross-fostering design to investigate the effects of enlarged and reduced litter sizes on sexual signalling, oxidative stress and the links between them. Oxidative stress causes somatic damage that can limit reproductive success and lifespan, and is predicted to mediate investment in life-history traits, including sexual signals. We predicted that litter enlargement would cause an increase in potential oxidative stress, inhibit growth and reduce sexual signalling in male mice. Males reared in enlarged litters were smaller at weaning and, despite rapid growth immediately after weaning, remained smaller at 10 weeks of age than those reared in smaller litters. Females from enlarged litters were consistently smaller throughout post-weaning development and showed no increase in growth rate compared with females from reduced litters. In enlarged litters, protein thiol concentration was lower at weaning in the liver and kidneys, with this trend continuing at 10 weeks of age in the kidneys only. Aconitase enzyme activity was also lower in mice from enlarged litters at weaning and 10 weeks of age in the kidneys. Male mice from enlarged litters scent marked more frequently and had larger preputial glands than those from reduced litters, indicating greater sexual signalling investment irrespective of this increased oxidative challenge. The results of this study are the first to reveal oxidative costs of developmental stress in small mammals. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  10. Peculiarities of litter invertebrates’ multispecies complexes formation on the Khortitsa island (Zaporizhzhya province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. О. Fedorchenko

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Peculiarities of litter invertebrates’ complexes formation under conditions of the Khortitsa National Reserve (Zaporizhzhya province are studied. The dispersion of taxonomic groups of different levels (families and species in litter mesofauna is swayed by the inter- and intrasystem factors; the largest influence has the power of litter and its humidity. The rate of ecological factors’ influence at different taxonomic levels may diverge.

  11. The Effect of Leaf Litter Cover on Surface Runoff and Soil Erosion in Northern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiang; Niu, Jianzhi; Xie, Baoyuan

    2014-01-01

    The role of leaf litter in hydrological processes and soil erosion of forest ecosystems is poorly understood. A field experiment was conducted under simulated rainfall in runoff plots with a slope of 10%. Two common types of litter in North China (from Quercus variabilis, representing broadleaf litter, and Pinus tabulaeformis, representing needle leaf litter), four amounts of litter, and five rainfall intensities were tested. Results revealed that the litter reduced runoff and delayed the beginning of runoff, but significantly reduced soil loss (prunoff yield was 29.5% and 31.3% less than bare-soil plot, and for Q. variabilis and P. tabulaeformis, respectively, and average sediment yield was 85.1% and 79.9% lower. Rainfall intensity significantly affected runoff (R = 0.99, prunoff reduction by litter decreased considerably. Runoff yield and the runoff coefficient increased dramatically by 72.9 and 5.4 times, respectively. The period of time before runoff appeared decreased approximately 96.7% when rainfall intensity increased from 5.7 to 75.6 mm h−1. Broadleaf and needle leaf litter showed similarly relevant effects on runoff and soil erosion control, since no significant differences (p≤0.05) were observed in runoff and sediment variables between two litter-covered plots. In contrast, litter mass was probably not a main factor in determining runoff and sediment because a significant correlation was found only with sediment in Q. variabilis litter plot. Finally, runoff yield was significantly correlated (prunoff and erosion processes was crucial, and both rainfall intensity and litter characteristics had an impact on these processes. PMID:25232858

  12. The effect of leaf litter cover on surface runoff and soil erosion in Northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiang; Niu, Jianzhi; Xie, Baoyuan

    2014-01-01

    The role of leaf litter in hydrological processes and soil erosion of forest ecosystems is poorly understood. A field experiment was conducted under simulated rainfall in runoff plots with a slope of 10%. Two common types of litter in North China (from Quercus variabilis, representing broadleaf litter, and Pinus tabulaeformis, representing needle leaf litter), four amounts of litter, and five rainfall intensities were tested. Results revealed that the litter reduced runoff and delayed the beginning of runoff, but significantly reduced soil loss (prunoff yield was 29.5% and 31.3% less than bare-soil plot, and for Q. variabilis and P. tabulaeformis, respectively, and average sediment yield was 85.1% and 79.9% lower. Rainfall intensity significantly affected runoff (R = 0.99, prunoff reduction by litter decreased considerably. Runoff yield and the runoff coefficient increased dramatically by 72.9 and 5.4 times, respectively. The period of time before runoff appeared decreased approximately 96.7% when rainfall intensity increased from 5.7 to 75.6 mm h-1. Broadleaf and needle leaf litter showed similarly relevant effects on runoff and soil erosion control, since no significant differences (p≤0.05) were observed in runoff and sediment variables between two litter-covered plots. In contrast, litter mass was probably not a main factor in determining runoff and sediment because a significant correlation was found only with sediment in Q. variabilis litter plot. Finally, runoff yield was significantly correlated (prunoff and erosion processes was crucial, and both rainfall intensity and litter characteristics had an impact on these processes.

  13. Intestinal Microbiota of Broiler Chickens As Affected by Litter Management Regimens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lingling; Lilburn, Mike; Yu, Zhongtang

    2016-01-01

    Poultry litter is a mixture of bedding materials and enteric bacteria excreted by chickens, and it is typically reused for multiple growth cycles in commercial broiler production. Thus, bacteria can be transmitted from one growth cycle to the next via litter. However, it remains poorly understood how litter reuse affects development and composition of chicken gut microbiota. In this study, the effect of litter reuse on the microbiota in litter and in chicken gut was investigated using 2 litter management regimens: fresh vs. reused litter. Samples of ileal mucosa and cecal digesta were collected from young chicks (10 days of age) and mature birds (35 days of age). Based on analysis using DGGE and pyrosequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA gene amplicons, the microbiota of both the ileal mucosa and the cecal contents was affected by both litter management regimen and age of birds. Faecalibacterium, Oscillospira, Butyricicoccus, and one unclassified candidate genus closely related to Ruminococcus were most predominant in the cecal samples, while Lactobacillus was predominant in the ileal samples at both ages and in the cecal samples collected at day 10. At days 10 and 35, 8 and 3 genera, respectively, in the cecal luminal microbiota differed significantly in relative abundance between the 2 litter management regimens. Compared to the fresh litter, reused litter increased predominance of halotolerant/alkaliphilic bacteria and Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, a butyrate-producing gut bacterium. This study suggests that litter management regimens affect the chicken GI microbiota, which may impact the host nutritional status and intestinal health. PMID:27242676

  14. Litter Quality of Populus Species as Affected by Free-Air CO2

    OpenAIRE

    Vermue, E.; Buurman, P.; Hoosbeek, M.R.

    2009-01-01

    The effect of elevated CO2 and nitrogen fertilization on the molecular chemistry of litter of three Populus species and associated soil organic matter (SOM) was investigated by pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. The results are based on 147 quantified organic compounds in 24 litter samples. Litter of P. euramerica was clearly different from that of P. nigra and P. alba. The latter two had higher contents of proteins, polysaccharides, and cutin/cutan, while the former had higher c...

  15. Effects of elevated CO2 on litter chemistry and subsequent invertebrate detritivore feeding responses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew W Dray

    Full Text Available Elevated atmospheric CO2 can change foliar tissue chemistry. This alters leaf litter palatability to macroinvertebrate detritivores with consequences for decomposition, nutrient turnover, and food-web structure. Currently there is no consensus on the link between CO2 enrichment, litter chemistry, and macroinvertebrate-mediated leaf decomposition. To identify any unifying mechanisms, we presented eight invertebrate species from aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems with litter from Alnus glutinosa (common alder or Betula pendula (silver birch trees propagated under ambient (380 ppm or elevated (ambient +200 ppm CO2 concentrations. Alder litter was largely unaffected by CO2 enrichment, but birch litter from leaves grown under elevated CO2 had reduced nitrogen concentrations and greater C/N ratios. Invertebrates were provided individually with either (i two litter discs, one of each CO2 treatment ('choice', or (ii one litter disc of each CO2 treatment alone ('no-choice'. Consumption was recorded. Only Odontocerum albicorne showed a feeding preference in the choice test, consuming more ambient- than elevated-CO2 birch litter. Species' responses to alder were highly idiosyncratic in the no-choice test: Gammarus pulex and O. albicorne consumed more elevated-CO2 than ambient-CO2 litter, indicating compensatory feeding, while Oniscus asellus consumed more of the ambient-CO2 litter. No species responded to CO2 treatment when fed birch litter. Overall, these results show how elevated atmospheric CO2 can alter litter chemistry, affecting invertebrate feeding behaviour in species-specific ways. The data highlight the need for greater species-level information when predicting changes to detrital processing-a key ecosystem function-under atmospheric change.

  16. The generation and cost of litter resulting from the curbside collection of recycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Travis P; Broaddus, Nathan

    2016-04-01

    This study examined the generation of litter, defined as spillage and uncollected residue, from a curbside collection system for residential recycling. The primary recycling containers used in the study were 18-gal (68 L), open-top bins. The study, conducted over a seven-week period, was comprised of both an urban and suburban area. Six litter characterizations were conducted in which all new litter larger than 1 in.(2) was collected, segregated, counted, and weighed. We found that each week the open-top recycling bins contributed approximately 20,590 pieces of litter over 1 in. in size per every 1000 households, which resulted in the generation of 3.74 tons of litter per 1000 households per year. In addition to the bins having no top, the primary root causes of the litter were constantly overflowing recycling bins, the method of collection, and material scavenging. Based on an estimated cost of litter cleanup ranging from $0.17 to $0.79 per piece of litter, the direct economic costs from the collection of litter and loss in recycling revenues were estimated at US$3920 to US$19,250 per 1000 households per year. Other notable impacts from the litter, such as increased risk of flood damage from storm drain impairment and marine ecosystem damages exist, but were not monetized. The results strongly suggest that modification of the curbside collection system would decrease the amount and associated cost of litter by replacing existing curbside collection containers with larger volume containers with covers and by modifying the task-based incentive system to emphasize litter prevention rather than the current aim of completing the task most quickly. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Stoichiometric controls of nitrogen and phosphorus cycling in decomposing beech leaf litter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mooshammer, Maria; Wanek, Wolfgang; Schnecker, Jörg; Wild, Birgit; Leitner, Sonja; Hofhansl, Florian; Blöchl, Andreas; Hämmerle, Ieda; Frank, Alexander H; Fuchslueger, Lucia; Keiblinger, Katharina M; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Sophie; Richter, Andreas

    2012-04-01

    Resource stoichiometry (C:N:P) is an important determinant of litter decomposition. However, the effect of elemental stoichiometry on the gross rates of microbial N and P cycling processes during litter decomposition is unknown. In a mesocosm experiment, beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) litter with natural differences in elemental stoichiometry (C:N:P) was incubated under constant environmental conditions. After three and six months, we measured various aspects of nitrogen and phosphorus cycling. We found that gross protein depolymerization, N mineralization (ammonification), and nitrification rates were negatively related to litter C:N. Rates of P mineralization were negatively correlated with litter C:P. The negative correlations with litter C:N were stronger for inorganic N cycling processes than for gross protein depolymerization, indicating that the effect of resource stoichiometry on intracellular processes was stronger than on processes catalyzed by extracellular enzymes. Consistent with this, extracellular protein depolymerization was mainly limited by substrate availability and less so by the amount of protease. Strong positive correlations between the interconnected N and P pools and the respective production and consumption processes pointed to feed-forward control of microbial litter N and P cycling. A negative relationship between litter C:N and phosphatase activity (and between litter C:P and protease activity) demonstrated that microbes tended to allocate carbon and nutrients in ample supply into the production of extracellular enzymes to mine for the nutrient that is more limiting. Overall, the study demonstrated a strong effect of litter stoichiometry (C:N:P) on gross processes of microbial N and P cycling in decomposing litter; mineralization of N and P were tightly coupled to assist in maintaining cellular homeostasis of litter microbial communities.

  18. Perrenial Grasses for Sustainable European Protein Production

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Uffe; Lærke, Poul Erik

    2016-01-01

    reduction goals for agriculture. Denmark has an especially vulnerable aquatic environment due to sandy soils, a long coast line, and high precipitation. Thus, fulfilling the WFD means some areas must halve their nitrate leaching, and radical changes are required to reduce losses while maintaining profitable...... crop production. National scenarios show that up to ten million tonnes of additional biomass can be sourced in Denmark without reducing food production or increasing the area under cultivation if a biorefinery industry is established. In one of the scenarios optimized for additional environmental...... in the “environment” scenario. This scenario was achieved by converting approx. 9 % of agricultural land from annual crops into perennial grass. New experimental results support the anticipated increase in total biomass yield and reduction in nitrate leaching, when converting land currently used for grain crop...

  19. Ingestion of marine litter by loggerhead sea turtles, Caretta caretta, in Portuguese continental waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicolau, Lídia; Marçalo, Ana; Ferreira, Marisa; Sá, Sara; Vingada, José; Eira, Catarina

    2016-02-15

    The accumulation of litter in marine and coastal environments is a major threat to marine life. Data on marine litter in the gastrointestinal tract of stranded loggerhead turtles, Caretta caretta, found along the Portuguese continental coast was presented. Out of the 95 analysed loggerheads, litter was present in 56 individuals (59.0%) and most had less than 10 litter items (76.8%) and less than 5 g (dm) (96.8%). Plastic was the main litter category (frequency of occurrence=56.8%), while sheet (45.3%) was the most relevant plastic sub-category. There was no influence of loggerhead stranding season, cause of stranding or size on the amount of litter ingested (mean number and dry mass of litter items per turtle). The high ingested litter occurrence frequency in this study supports the use of the loggerhead turtle as a suitable tool to monitor marine litter trends, as required by the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Litter input controls on soil carbon in a temperate deciduous forest

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bowden, Richard D.; Deem, Lauren; Plante, Alain F.

    2014-01-01

    Above- and belowground litter inputs in a temperate deciduous forest were altered for 20 yr to determine the importance of leaves and roots on soil C and soil organic matter (SOM) quantity and quality. Carbon and SOM quantity and quality were measured in the O horizon and mineral soil to 50 cm...... soil C, but decreases in litter inputs resulted in rapid soil C declines. Root litter may ultimately provide more stable sources of soil C. Management activities or environmental alterations that decrease litter inputs in mature forests can lower soil C content; however, increases in forest...