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Sample records for neotropical arboreal ant

  1. Arboreal ant colonies as 'hot-points' of cryptic diversity for myrmecophiles: the weaver ant Camponotus sp. aff. textor and its interaction network with its associates.

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    Gabriela Pérez-Lachaud

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Systematic surveys of macrofaunal diversity within ant colonies are lacking, particularly for ants nesting in microhabitats that are difficult to sample. Species associated with ants are generally small and rarely collected organisms, which makes them more likely to be unnoticed. We assumed that this tendency is greater for arthropod communities in microhabitats with low accessibility, such as those found in the nests of arboreal ants that may constitute a source of cryptic biodiversity. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We investigated the invertebrate diversity associated with an undescribed, but already threatened, Neotropical Camponotus weaver ant. As most of the common sampling methods used in studies of ant diversity are not suited for evaluating myrmecophile diversity within ant nests, we evaluated the macrofauna within ant nests through exhaustive colony sampling of three nests and examination of more than 80,000 individuals. RESULTS: We identified invertebrates from three classes belonging to 18 taxa, some of which were new to science, and recorded the first instance of the co-occurrence of two brood parasitoid wasp families attacking the same ant host colony. This diversity of ant associates corresponded to a highly complex interaction network. Agonistic interactions prevailed, but the prevalence of myrmecophiles was remarkably low. CONCLUSIONS: Our data support the hypothesis of the evolution of low virulence in a variety of symbionts associated with large insect societies. Because most myrmecophiles found in this work are rare, strictly specific, and exhibit highly specialized biology, the risk of extinction for these hitherto unknown invertebrates and their natural enemies is high. The cryptic, far unappreciated diversity within arboreal ant nests in areas at high risk of habitat loss qualifies these nests as 'hot-points' of biodiversity that urgently require special attention as a component of conservation and management

  2. Arboreal ant colonies as 'hot-points' of cryptic diversity for myrmecophiles: the weaver ant Camponotus sp. aff. textor and its interaction network with its associates.

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    Pérez-Lachaud, Gabriela; Lachaud, Jean-Paul

    2014-01-01

    Systematic surveys of macrofaunal diversity within ant colonies are lacking, particularly for ants nesting in microhabitats that are difficult to sample. Species associated with ants are generally small and rarely collected organisms, which makes them more likely to be unnoticed. We assumed that this tendency is greater for arthropod communities in microhabitats with low accessibility, such as those found in the nests of arboreal ants that may constitute a source of cryptic biodiversity. We investigated the invertebrate diversity associated with an undescribed, but already threatened, Neotropical Camponotus weaver ant. As most of the common sampling methods used in studies of ant diversity are not suited for evaluating myrmecophile diversity within ant nests, we evaluated the macrofauna within ant nests through exhaustive colony sampling of three nests and examination of more than 80,000 individuals. We identified invertebrates from three classes belonging to 18 taxa, some of which were new to science, and recorded the first instance of the co-occurrence of two brood parasitoid wasp families attacking the same ant host colony. This diversity of ant associates corresponded to a highly complex interaction network. Agonistic interactions prevailed, but the prevalence of myrmecophiles was remarkably low. Our data support the hypothesis of the evolution of low virulence in a variety of symbionts associated with large insect societies. Because most myrmecophiles found in this work are rare, strictly specific, and exhibit highly specialized biology, the risk of extinction for these hitherto unknown invertebrates and their natural enemies is high. The cryptic, far unappreciated diversity within arboreal ant nests in areas at high risk of habitat loss qualifies these nests as 'hot-points' of biodiversity that urgently require special attention as a component of conservation and management programs.

  3. Arboreal Ant Colonies as ‘Hot-Points’ of Cryptic Diversity for Myrmecophiles: The Weaver Ant Camponotus sp. aff. textor and Its Interaction Network with Its Associates

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    Pérez-Lachaud, Gabriela; Lachaud, Jean-Paul

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Systematic surveys of macrofaunal diversity within ant colonies are lacking, particularly for ants nesting in microhabitats that are difficult to sample. Species associated with ants are generally small and rarely collected organisms, which makes them more likely to be unnoticed. We assumed that this tendency is greater for arthropod communities in microhabitats with low accessibility, such as those found in the nests of arboreal ants that may constitute a source of cryptic biodiversity. Materials and Methods We investigated the invertebrate diversity associated with an undescribed, but already threatened, Neotropical Camponotus weaver ant. As most of the common sampling methods used in studies of ant diversity are not suited for evaluating myrmecophile diversity within ant nests, we evaluated the macrofauna within ant nests through exhaustive colony sampling of three nests and examination of more than 80,000 individuals. Results We identified invertebrates from three classes belonging to 18 taxa, some of which were new to science, and recorded the first instance of the co-occurrence of two brood parasitoid wasp families attacking the same ant host colony. This diversity of ant associates corresponded to a highly complex interaction network. Agonistic interactions prevailed, but the prevalence of myrmecophiles was remarkably low. Conclusions Our data support the hypothesis of the evolution of low virulence in a variety of symbionts associated with large insect societies. Because most myrmecophiles found in this work are rare, strictly specific, and exhibit highly specialized biology, the risk of extinction for these hitherto unknown invertebrates and their natural enemies is high. The cryptic, far unappreciated diversity within arboreal ant nests in areas at high risk of habitat loss qualifies these nests as ‘hot-points’ of biodiversity that urgently require special attention as a component of conservation and management programs. PMID:24941047

  4. Movement patterns of three arboreal primates in a Neotropical moist forest explained by LiDAR-estimated canopy structure

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    McLean, Kevin A.; Trainor, Anne M.; Asner, Gregory P.; Crofoot, Margaret C.; Hopkins, Mariah E.; Campbell, Christina J.; Martin, Roberta E.; Knapp, David E.; Jansen, Patrick A.

    2016-01-01

    Context: Many arboreal mammals in Neotropical forests are important seed dispersers that influence the spatial patterns of tree regeneration via their movement patterns, which in turn are determined by the canopy structure of the forest itself. However, the relationship between arboreal mammal

  5. Canopy cover negatively affects arboreal ant species richness in a tropical open habitat

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    A. C. M. Queiroz

    Full Text Available Abstract We tested the hypothesis of a negative relationship between vegetation characteristics and ant species richness in a Brazilian open vegetation habitat, called candeial. We set up arboreal pitfalls to sample arboreal ants and measured the following environmental variables, which were used as surrogate of environmental heterogeneity: tree richness, tree density, tree height, circumference at the base of the plants, and canopy cover. Only canopy cover had a negative effect on the arboreal ant species richness. Vegetation characteristics and plant species composition are probably homogeneous in candeial, which explains the lack of relationship between other environmental variables and ant richness. Open vegetation habitats harbor a large number of opportunistic and generalist species, besides specialist ants from habitats with high temperatures. An increase in canopy cover decreases sunlight incidence and may cause local microclimatic differences, which negatively affect the species richness of specialist ants from open areas. Canopy cover regulates the richness of arboreal ants in open areas, since only few ant species are able to colonize sites with dense vegetation; most species are present in sites with high temperature and luminosity. Within open vegetation habitats the relationship between vegetation characteristics and species richness seems to be the opposite from closed vegetation areas, like forests.

  6. Rovno Amber Ant Assamblage: Bias toward Arboreal Strata or Sampling Effect?

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    Perkovsky E. E.

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In 2015 B. Guenard with co-authors indicated that the Rovno amber ant assemblage, as described by G. Dlussky and A. Rasnitsyn (2009, showed modest support for a bias towards arboreal origin comparing the Baltic and Bitterfeld assemblages, although it is not clear whether this reflects a sampling error or a signal of real deviation. Since 2009, the Rovno ant collection has now grown more than twice in volume which makes possible to check if the above inference about the essentially arboreal character of the assemblage is real or due to a sampling error. The comparison provided suggests in favour of the latter reason for the bias revealed by B. Guenard and co-authors. The new and larger data on the Rovno assemblage show that the share of non-arboreal ants is now well comparable with those concerning the Baltic and Bitterfeld assemblages. This holds true for the both total assemblages and subassemblages of worker ants only.

  7. Ant species confer different partner benefits on two neotropical myrmecophytes.

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    Frederickson, Megan E

    2005-04-01

    The dynamics of mutualistic interactions involving more than a single pair of species depend on the relative costs and benefits of interaction among alternative partners. The neotropical myrmecophytes Cordia nodosa and Duroia hirsuta associate with several species of obligately symbiotic ants. I compared the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia with respect to two benefits known to be important in ant-myrmecophyte interactions: protection against herbivores provided by ants, and protection against encroaching vegetation provided by ants. Azteca spp., Myrmelachista schumanni, and Allomerus octoarticulatus demerarae ants all provide the leaves of Cordia and Duroia some protection against herbivores. However, Azteca and Allomerus provide more protection than does Myrmelachista to the leaves of their host plants. Although Allomerus protects the leaves of its hosts, plants occupied by Allomerus suffer more attacks by herbivores to their stems than do plants occupied by other ants. Relative to Azteca or Allomerus, Myrmelachista ants provide better protection against encroaching vegetation, increasing canopy openness over their host plants. These differences in benefits among the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia are reflected in the effect of each ant species on host plant size, growth rate, and reproduction. The results of this study show how mutualistic ant partners can differ with respect to both the magnitude and type of benefits they provide to the same species of myrmecophytic host.

  8. Disentangling the diversity of arboreal ant communities in tropical forest trees.

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    Klimes, Petr; Fibich, Pavel; Idigel, Cliffson; Rimandai, Maling

    2015-01-01

    Tropical canopies are known for their high abundance and diversity of ants. However, the factors which enable coexistence of so many species in trees, and in particular, the role of foragers in determining local diversity, are not well understood. We censused nesting and foraging arboreal ant communities in two 0.32 ha plots of primary and secondary lowland rainforest in New Guinea and explored their species diversity and composition. Null models were used to test if the records of species foraging (but not nesting) in a tree were dependent on the spatial distribution of nests in surrounding trees. In total, 102 ant species from 389 trees occurred in the primary plot compared with only 50 species from 295 trees in the secondary forest plot. However, there was only a small difference in mean ant richness per tree between primary and secondary forest (3.8 and 3.3 sp. respectively) and considerably lower richness per tree was found only when nests were considered (1.5 sp. in both forests). About half of foraging individuals collected in a tree belonged to species which were not nesting in that tree. Null models showed that the ants foraging but not nesting in a tree are more likely to nest in nearby trees than would be expected at random. The effects of both forest stage and tree size traits were similar regardless of whether only foragers, only nests, or both datasets combined were considered. However, relative abundance distributions of species differed between foraging and nesting communities. The primary forest plot was dominated by native ant species, whereas invasive species were common in secondary forest. This study demonstrates the high contribution of foragers to arboreal ant diversity, indicating an important role of connectivity between trees, and also highlights the importance of primary vegetation for the conservation of native ant communities.

  9. Arboreal ants use the "Velcro(R principle" to capture very large prey.

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    Alain Dejean

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Plant-ants live in a mutualistic association with host plants known as "myrmecophytes" that provide them with a nesting place and sometimes with extra-floral nectar (EFN and/or food bodies (FBs; the ants can also attend sap-sucking Hemiptera for their honeydew. In return, plant-ants, like most other arboreal ants, protect their host plants from defoliators. To satisfy their nitrogen requirements, however, some have optimized their ability to capture prey in the restricted environment represented by the crowns of trees by using elaborate hunting techniques. In this study, we investigated the predatory behavior of the ant Azteca andreae which is associated with the myrmecophyte Cecropia obtusa. We noted that up to 8350 ant workers per tree hide side-by-side beneath the leaf margins of their host plant with their mandibles open, waiting for insects to alight. The latter are immediately seized by their extremities, and then spread-eagled; nestmates are recruited to help stretch, carve up and transport prey. This group ambush hunting technique is particularly effective when the underside of the leaves is downy, as is the case for C. obtusa. In this case, the hook-shaped claws of the A. andreae workers and the velvet-like structure of the underside of the leaves combine to act like natural Velcro that is reinforced by the group ambush strategy of the workers, allowing them to capture prey of up to 13,350 times the mean weight of a single worker.

  10. The dynamics of foraging trails in the tropical arboreal ant Cephalotes goniodontus.

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    Deborah M Gordon

    Full Text Available The foraging behavior of the arboreal turtle ant, Cephalotes goniodontus, was studied in the tropical dry forest of western Mexico. The ants collected mostly plant-derived food, including nectar and fluids collected from the edges of wounds on leaves, as well as caterpillar frass and lichen. Foraging trails are on small pieces of ephemeral vegetation, and persist in exactly the same place for 4-8 days, indicating that food sources may be used until they are depleted. The species is polydomous, occupying many nests which are abandoned cavities or ends of broken branches in dead wood. Foraging trails extend from trees with nests to trees with food sources. Observations of marked individuals show that each trail is travelled by a distinct group of foragers. This makes the entire foraging circuit more resilient if a path becomes impassable, since foraging in one trail can continue while a different group of ants forms a new trail. The colony's trails move around the forest from month to month; from one year to the next, only one colony out of five was found in the same location. There is continual searching in the vicinity of trails: ants recruited to bait within 3 bifurcations of a main foraging trail within 4 hours. When bait was offered on one trail, to which ants recruited, foraging activity increased on a different trail, with no bait, connected to the same nest. This suggests that the allocation of foragers to different trails is regulated by interactions at the nest.

  11. The dynamics of foraging trails in the tropical arboreal ant Cephalotes goniodontus.

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    Gordon, Deborah M

    2012-01-01

    The foraging behavior of the arboreal turtle ant, Cephalotes goniodontus, was studied in the tropical dry forest of western Mexico. The ants collected mostly plant-derived food, including nectar and fluids collected from the edges of wounds on leaves, as well as caterpillar frass and lichen. Foraging trails are on small pieces of ephemeral vegetation, and persist in exactly the same place for 4-8 days, indicating that food sources may be used until they are depleted. The species is polydomous, occupying many nests which are abandoned cavities or ends of broken branches in dead wood. Foraging trails extend from trees with nests to trees with food sources. Observations of marked individuals show that each trail is travelled by a distinct group of foragers. This makes the entire foraging circuit more resilient if a path becomes impassable, since foraging in one trail can continue while a different group of ants forms a new trail. The colony's trails move around the forest from month to month; from one year to the next, only one colony out of five was found in the same location. There is continual searching in the vicinity of trails: ants recruited to bait within 3 bifurcations of a main foraging trail within 4 hours. When bait was offered on one trail, to which ants recruited, foraging activity increased on a different trail, with no bait, connected to the same nest. This suggests that the allocation of foragers to different trails is regulated by interactions at the nest.

  12. Arboreal Ants Use the “Velcro® Principle” to Capture Very Large Prey

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    Dejean, Alain; Leroy, Céline; Corbara, Bruno; Roux, Olivier; Céréghino, Régis; Orivel, Jérôme; Boulay, Raphaël

    2010-01-01

    Plant-ants live in a mutualistic association with host plants known as “myrmecophytes” that provide them with a nesting place and sometimes with extra-floral nectar (EFN) and/or food bodies (FBs); the ants can also attend sap-sucking Hemiptera for their honeydew. In return, plant-ants, like most other arboreal ants, protect their host plants from defoliators. To satisfy their nitrogen requirements, however, some have optimized their ability to capture prey in the restricted environment represented by the crowns of trees by using elaborate hunting techniques. In this study, we investigated the predatory behavior of the ant Azteca andreae which is associated with the myrmecophyte Cecropia obtusa. We noted that up to 8350 ant workers per tree hide side-by-side beneath the leaf margins of their host plant with their mandibles open, waiting for insects to alight. The latter are immediately seized by their extremities, and then spread-eagled; nestmates are recruited to help stretch, carve up and transport prey. This group ambush hunting technique is particularly effective when the underside of the leaves is downy, as is the case for C. obtusa. In this case, the hook-shaped claws of the A. andreae workers and the velvet-like structure of the underside of the leaves combine to act like natural Velcro® that is reinforced by the group ambush strategy of the workers, allowing them to capture prey of up to 13,350 times the mean weight of a single worker. PMID:20593032

  13. Spatial distribution of dominant arboreal ants in a malagasy coastal rainforest: gaps and presence of an invasive species.

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    Alain Dejean

    Full Text Available We conducted a survey along three belt transects located at increasing distances from the coast to determine whether a non-random arboreal ant assemblage, such as an ant mosaic, exists in the rainforest on the Masoala Peninsula, Madagascar. In most tropical rainforests, very populous colonies of territorially dominant arboreal ant species defend absolute territories distributed in a mosaic pattern. Among the 29 ant species recorded, only nine had colonies large enough to be considered potentially territorially dominant; the remaining species had smaller colonies and were considered non-dominant. Nevertheless, the null-model analyses used to examine the spatial structure of their assemblages did not reveal the existence of an ant mosaic. Inland, up to 44% of the trees were devoid of dominant arboreal ants, something not reported in other studies. While two Crematogaster species were not associated with one another, Brachymyrmex cordemoyi was positively associated with Technomyrmex albipes, which is considered an invasive species-a non-indigenous species that has an adverse ecological effect on the habitats it invades. The latter two species and Crematogaster ranavalonae were mutually exclusive. On the other hand, all of the trees in the coastal transect and at least 4 km of coast were occupied by T. albipes, and were interconnected by columns of workers. Technomyrmex albipes workers collected from different trees did not attack each other during confrontation tests, indicating that this species has formed a supercolony along the coast. Yet interspecific aggressiveness did occur between T. albipes and Crematogaster ranavalonae, a native species which is likely territorially dominant based on our intraspecific confrontation tests. These results suggest that the Masoala rainforest is threatened by a potential invasion by T. albipes, and that the penetration of this species further inland might be facilitated by the low density of native

  14. Monitoring Effect of Fire on Ant Assemblages in Brazilian Rupestrian Grasslands: Contrasting Effects on Ground and Arboreal Fauna

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    Diego Anjos

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Fire is one of the most relevant ecological disturbances in nature. Little is known about the effects of fire on biodiversity in ecosystems like rupestrian grasslands, which share characteristics with savanna and forest biomes. Brazilian rupestrian grasslands are part of an endangered ecosystem that has been modified by anthropogenic fire events that have become more intense in recent decades. In this study, we evaluated the effects of fire on ground and arboreal ant assemblages through a two-year monitoring program (24 monthly samplings. We found that fire does not change cumulative species richness after 24 months, and that fire does not affect mean ant richness, abundance, and species composition in arboreal ants. On the other hand, fire increased mean ground ant species richness and abundance, and caused a significant change in species composition. Our results indicate a weak and beneficial effect of fire only for ground ant communities, which generally agrees with results from other studies in Brazilian savannas. Taken together, results from these studies may be useful for improvement of fire suppression policy in fire-prone habitats in Brazil.

  15. Three new species and reassessment of the rare Neotropical ant genus Leptanilloides (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Leptanilloidinae

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    Marek Borowiec

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available We describe three new species of the Neotropical ant genus Leptanilloides: L. gracilis sp. n. based on workers from Mexico and Guatemala, L. erinys sp. n. based on workers and a gyne from Ecuador, and L. femoralis sp. n. based on workers from Venezuela. The description of L. gracilis is a northern extension of the known range of the genus, now numbering eleven described species. We also describe and discuss three unassociated male morphotypes from Central America. We report the occurrence of a metatibial gland in Leptanilloides and a fused promesonotal connection (suture in some species. We provide a modified, detailed diagnosis of the genus and a revised key to the worker caste of the known species.

  16. Paralyzing action from a distance in an arboreal African ant species.

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    Aline Rifflet

    Full Text Available Due to their prowess in interspecific competition and ability to catch a wide range of arthropod prey (mostly termites with which they are engaged in an evolutionary arms race, ants are recognized as a good model for studying the chemicals involved in defensive and predatory behaviors. Ants' wide diversity of nesting habits and relationships with plants and prey types implies that these chemicals are also very diverse. Using the African myrmicine ant Crematogaster striatula as our focal species, we adopted a three-pronged research approach. We studied the aggressive and predatory behaviors of the ant workers, conducted bioassays on the effect of their Dufour gland contents on termites, and analyzed these contents. (1 The workers defend themselves or eliminate termites by orienting their abdominal tip toward the opponent, stinger protruded. The chemicals emitted, apparently volatile, trigger the recruitment of nestmates situated in the vicinity and act without the stinger having to come into direct contact with the opponent. Whereas alien ants competing with C. striatula for sugary food sources are repelled by this behavior and retreat further and further away, termites defend their nest whatever the danger. They face down C. striatula workers and end up by rolling onto their backs, their legs batting the air. (2 The bioassays showed that the toxicity of the Dufour gland contents acts in a time-dependent manner, leading to the irreversible paralysis, and, ultimately, death of the termites. (3 Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses showed that the Dufour gland contains a mixture of mono- or polyunsaturated long-chain derivatives, bearing functional groups like oxo-alcohols or oxo-acetates. Electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry showed the presence of a molecule of 1584 Da that might be a large, acetylated alkaloid capable of splitting into smaller molecules that could be responsible for the final degree of venom toxicity.

  17. Infestation of arboreal nests of coatis by triatomine species, vectors of Trypanosoma cruzi, in a large Neotropical wetland.

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    de Lima, Juliane Saab; Rocha, Fabiana Lopes; Alves, Fernanda Moreira; Lorosa, Elias Seixas; Jansen, Ana Maria; de Miranda Mourão, Guilherme

    2015-12-01

    The coati (Nasua nasua, Carnivora) is a medium-sized mammal common in the Pantanal of Brazil. Unlike most mammals, coatis construct arboreal nests used for resting and reproduction. In this region, the coati is an important host of Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease. There are two possible routes through coatis can be infected by T. cruzi: the oral route or the vectorial route. However, the relative importance of each of these routes in the infection of coatis and its role in the sylvatic cycle of the parasite are unknown. Our objectives were to investigate: (i) whether coati nests were infested by triatomine bugs, (ii) what species were frequent in the nests, (iii) whether the triatomines in nests were infected by T. cruzi, and (iv) what were the food resources of these triatomines. Eight of the 24 nests sampled were infested with triatomines, a total of 37 specimens of at least two species (Rhodnius stali and Triatoma sordida). In one nest, R. stali and T. sordida co-occurred and both fed on multiple resources, including coatis. This is the first report of triatomines occurring in arboreal nests of coatis. The co-occurrence of two different genera of triatomine vectors and coatis within the limited space of the coati nests provide multiple opportunities for the exchange of the protozoan parasite through both the vectorial and oral transmission routes. © 2015 The Society for Vector Ecology.

  18. Properties of Arboreal Ant and Ground-Termite Nests in relation to Their Nesting Sites and Location in a Tropical-Derived Savanna

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    B. C. Echezona

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Ecosystem engineers such as ants and termites play an important role in the fertility of tropical soils. Physicochemical analyses were thus carried out on some arboreal ant nests collected from mango (Mangifera indica, bush mango (Irvingia gabonensis, kola (Cola nitida, newbouldia plant (Newbouldia laevis, and oil bean plant (Pentaclethra macrophylla and on ground nest of termite, Odontotermes sudanensis Sjost. (Isoptera: Termitidae in Nigeria. Arboreal nests, particularly those of M. indica, were significantly richer in the chemical constituents sampled, compared to those of ground-termite nests or adjacent unaffected soils. Available water capacity of nests from M. indica (60.0% was significantly higher than those of other sites or locations sampled. While biogenic structures were sandy-loamy in texture, their corresponding adjacent soils were either sandy or sandy-loamy. Soils worked by ants and termites had greater proportions of silt-sized (17.9 versus 9.7 and clay-sized (19.2 versus 9.3 to the detriment of coarse-sized particles (51.2 versus 60.9 and fine-sand-sized particles (11.7 versus 20.1 relative to the adjacent soils. Generally, biogenic structures were about 348% richer in P than their corresponding adjacent soils; an attribute, which holds a strong promise in bioremediation and biofortification of soils especially during amendment.

  19. Magnetic anisotropy and organization of nanoparticles in heads and antennae of neotropical leaf-cutter ants, Atta colombica

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    Alves, Odivaldo C; Srygley, Robert B; Riveros, Andre J; Barbosa, Marcia A; Esquivel, Darci M S; Wajnberg, Eliane

    2014-01-01

    Oriented magnetic nanoparticles have been suggested as a good candidate for a magnetic sensor in ants. Behavioural evidence for a magnetic compass in neotropical leaf-cutter ants, Atta colombica (Formicidae: Attini), motivated a study of the arrangement of magnetic particles in the ants’ four major body parts by measuring the angular dependence of the ferromagnetic resonance spectra at room temperature. Spectra of the thoraces and those of the abdomens showed no significant angular dependence, while those of the antennae and those of the heads exhibited a periodic dependence relative to the magnetic field. Fitting of the angular dependence of the resonant field resulted in an unexpected magnetic anisotropy with uniaxial symmetry. High values of the first order anisotropy constant were observed for the magnetic material in antennae (−2.9  ×  10 5  erg cm −3 ) and heads (−1  ×  10 6  erg   cm −3 ) as compared to body parts of other social insects. In addition, the magnitude of the anisotropy in the heads was comparable to that observed in magnetite nanoparticles of 4–5 nm diameter. For the antennae, the mean angle of the particles’ easy magnetization axis (EA) was estimated to be 41° relative to the straightened antenna’s long axis. For the heads, EA was approximately 60° relative to the head’s axis running from midway between the spines to the clypeus. These physical characteristics indicate organized magnetic nanoparticles with a potential for directional sensitivity, which is an important feature of magnetic compasses. (paper)

  20. Leaf Cutter Ant (Atta cephalotes) Soil Modification and In Situ CO2 Gas Dynamics in a Neotropical Wet Forest

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    Fernandez Bou, A. S.; Carrasquillo Quintana, O.; Dierick, D.; Harmon, T. C.; Johnson, S.; Schwendenmann, L.; Zelikova, T. J.

    2016-12-01

    The goal of this work is to advance our understanding of soil carbon cycling in highly productive neotropical wet forests. More specifically, we are investigating the influence of leaf cutter ants (LCA) on soil CO2 gas dynamics in primary and secondary forest soils at La Selva Biological Station, Costa Rica. LCA are the dominant herbivore in tropical Americas, responsible for as much as 50% of the total herbivory. Their presence is increasing and their range is expanding because of forest fragmentation and other human impacts. We installed gas sampling wells in LCA (Atta cephalotes) nest and control sites (non-nests in the same soil and forest settings). The experimental design encompassed land cover (primary and secondary forest) and soil type (residual and alluvial). We collected gas samples monthly over an 18-month period. Several of the LCA nests were abandoned during this period. Nevertheless, we continued to sample these sites for LCA legacy effects. In several of the sites, we also installed sensors to continuously monitor soil moisture content, temperature, and CO2 levels. Within the 18-month period we conducted a 2-month field campaign to collect soil and nest vent CO2 efflux data from 3 of the nest-control pairs. Integrating the various data sets, we observed that for most of the sites nest and control soils behaved similarly during the tropical dry season. However, during the wet season gas well CO2 concentrations increased in the control sites while levels in the nests remained at dry season levels. This outcome suggests that ants modify soil gas transport properties (e.g., tortuosity). In situ time series and efflux sampling campaign data corroborated these findings. Abandoned nest CO2 levels were similar to those of the active nests, supporting the notion of a legacy effect from LCA manipulations. For this work, the period of abandonment was relatively short (several months to 1 year maximum), which appears to be insufficient for estimating the

  1. A pest is a pest is a pest? The dilemma of neotropical leaf-cutting ants: Keystone taxa of natural ecosystems

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    Fowler, Harold G.; Pagani, Maria Inez; da Silva, Osvaldo Aulino; Forti, Luis Carlos; da Silva, Virgilio Pereira; de Vasconcelos, Heraldo Luis

    1989-11-01

    Leaf-cutting ants of the genera Acromyrmex and Atta are considered the principal polyphagous pests of the Neotropics Although some members of these genera are of economic importance, have a broad geographic distribution, and are extremely good colonizers, others are endemic and closely interact with native ecosystems. Control is generally practiced against any colony, irrespective of its taxonomic status. Indiscriminate control coupled with habitat destruction threatens endemic species with extinction, and, through habitat simplification, favors other pest species. As nests of Atta are large, having several square meters of nest surface, the endemic taxa can be easily used as environmental indicators for natural ecosystems Likewise, the pest species can be used to detect environmental disturbance As these ants are keystone species and easily identified by nonspecialists, efforts should be made to integrate these into viable conservation programs

  2. The role of ant-tended extrafloral nectaries in the protection and benefit of a Neotropical rainforest tree.

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    de la Fuente, Marie Ann S; Marquis, Robert J

    1999-02-01

    One possible function of extrafloral nectaries is to attract insects, particularly ants, which defend plants from herbivores. We determined whether ants visiting saplings of the tree Stryphnodendronmicrostachyum (Leguminosae) provide protection (decreased plant damage due to ant molestation or killing of herbivores) and benefit (increased plant growth and reproduction associated with ant presence) to the plant. We compared ant and herbivore abundance, herbivore damage and growth of ant-visited plants and ant-excluded plants grown in sun and shade microhabitats of a 6-ha plantation in Costa Rica over a 7-month period. Results show that ants provided protection to plants not by reducing herbivore numbers but by molesting herbivores. Ants also reduced the incidence of pathogen attack on leaves. Protection was greater in the shade than in the sun, probably due to lower herbivore attack in the sun. Protection was also variable within sun and shade habitats, and this variability appeared to be related to variable ant visitation. Results also indicate that ant presence benefits the plant: ant-visited plants grew significantly more in height than ant-excluded plants. The cultivation of ants may serve as an important natural biological control in tropical forestry and agroforestry systems, where increased plant density can otherwise lead to increased herbivore attack.

  3. Ant-caterpillar antagonism at the community level: interhabitat variation of tritrophic interactions in a neotropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sendoya, Sebastián F; Oliveira, Paulo S

    2015-03-01

    Ant foraging on foliage can substantially affect how phytophagous insects use host plants and represents a high predation risk for caterpillars, which are important folivores. Ant-plant-herbivore interactions are especially pervasive in cerrado savanna due to continuous ant visitation to liquid food sources on foliage (extrafloral nectaries, insect honeydew). While searching for liquid rewards on plants, aggressive ants frequently attack or kill insect herbivores, decreasing their numbers. Because ants vary in diet and aggressiveness, their effect on herbivores also varies. Additionally, the differential occurrence of ant attractants (plant and insect exudates) on foliage produces variable levels of ant foraging within local floras and among localities. Here, we investigate how variation of ant communities and of traits among host plant species (presence or absence of ant attractants) can change the effect of carnivores (predatory ants) on herbivore communities (caterpillars) in a cerrado savanna landscape. We sampled caterpillars and foliage-foraging ants in four cerrado localities (70-460 km apart). We found that: (i) caterpillar infestation was negatively related with ant visitation to plants; (ii) this relationship depended on local ant abundance and species composition, and on local preference by ants for plants with liquid attractants; (iii) this was not related to local plant richness or plant size; (iv) the relationship between the presence of ant attractants and caterpillar abundance varied among sites from negative to neutral; and (v) caterpillars feeding on plants with ant attractants are more resistant to ant predation than those feeding on plants lacking attractants. Liquid food on foliage mediates host plant quality for lepidopterans by promoting generalized ant-caterpillar antagonism. Our study in cerrado shows that the negative effects of generalist predatory ants on herbivores are detectable at a community level, affecting patterns of abundance and

  4. ANT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van der Duim, René; Ren, Carina Bregnholm; Jóhannesson, Gunnar Thór

    2017-01-01

    Ten years ago actor-network theory (ANT) entered this journal. To illustrate how the relational ontology and sensibilities of ANT lend themselves to particular kinds of research, we first interrogate the main controversies as a way to open up and discuss the main premises of ANT. These debates...... concern the status and agency of objects and non-humans, ANT’s denial of the explanatory power of social structures, and the political implications of ANT. Second we present ANT’s relevance for tourism studies and discuss what ANT ‘does’ in practice. After summarizing a decade of relations between ANT...... and tourism, we conclude by tracing three future trajectories of how we have ‘moved away with’ ANT into new areas of discovery....

  5. Community Structure of Leaf-Litter Ants in a Neotropical Dry Forest: A Biogeographic Approach to Explain Betadiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogério Silvestre

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes habitat and geographic correlates of ant diversity in Serra da Bodoquena, a poorly surveyed region of central-western Brazil. We discuss leaf-litter ant diversity on a regional scale, with emphasis on the contribution of each of the processes that form the evolutionary basis of contemporary beta diversity. The diversity of leaf-litter ants was assessed from a series of 262 Winkler samples conducted in two microbasins within a deciduous forest domain. A total of 170 litter-dwelling ant species in 45 genera and 11 subfamilies was identified. The data showed that the study areas exhibited different arrangements of ant fauna, with a high turnover in species composition between sites, indicating high beta diversity. Our analysis suggests that the biogeographic history of this tropical dry forest in the centre of South America could explain ant assemblage structure more than competitive dominance. The co-occurrence analysis showed that species co-occur less often than expected by chance in only two of the localities, suggesting that, for most of the species, co-occurrences are random. The assessment of the structure of the diversity of litter-dwelling ants is the first step in understanding the beta diversity patterns in this region of great biogeographic importance.

  6. A New Species of Neotropical Carpenter Ant in the Genus Camponotus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae, Apparently without Major Workers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Mackay

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We describe a new species of carpenter ants from Ecuador, which apparently has an obligatory relationship with the ant plants Cecropia membranacea Trécul, C. herthae Diels and C. marginalis Cuatrec. The workers are relatively small and hairy, and based on a number of collections, it does not appear to have major workers. We compare the new species to Camponotus balzani, to which it appears to be similar and which has normal major workers, and also lives in Cecropia spp.

  7. The ARBOR irradiation project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petersen, C. E-mail: claus.petersen@imf.fzk.de; Shamardin, V.; Fedoseev, A.; Shimansky, G.; Efimov, V.; Rensman, J

    2002-12-01

    The irradiation project 'ARBOR', for 'Associated Reactor Irradiation in BOR 60', includes 150 mini-tensile/low cycle fatigue specimens and 150 mini-Charpy (KLST) specimens of nine different RAFM steels. Specimens began irradiation on 22 November 2000 in an specially designed irradiation rig in BOR 60, in a fast neutron flux (>0.1 MeV) of 1.8x10{sup 15} n/cm{sup 2} s and with direct sodium cooling at a temperature less than 340 deg. C. Tensile, low cycle fatigue and Charpy specimens of the following materials are included: EUROFER 97, F82H mod., OPTIFER IVc, EUROFER 97 with different boron contents, ODS-EUROFER 97, as well as EUROFER 97 electron-beam welded and reference bulk material, from NRG, Petten.

  8. The ARBOR irradiation project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Petersen, C.; Shamardin, V.; Fedoseev, A.; Shimansky, G.; Efimov, V.; Rensman, J.

    2002-01-01

    The irradiation project 'ARBOR', for 'Associated Reactor Irradiation in BOR 60', includes 150 mini-tensile/low cycle fatigue specimens and 150 mini-Charpy (KLST) specimens of nine different RAFM steels. Specimens began irradiation on 22 November 2000 in an specially designed irradiation rig in BOR 60, in a fast neutron flux (>0.1 MeV) of 1.8x10 15 n/cm 2 s and with direct sodium cooling at a temperature less than 340 deg. C. Tensile, low cycle fatigue and Charpy specimens of the following materials are included: EUROFER 97, F82H mod., OPTIFER IVc, EUROFER 97 with different boron contents, ODS-EUROFER 97, as well as EUROFER 97 electron-beam welded and reference bulk material, from NRG, Petten

  9. Estudos citogenéticos em formigas neotropicais do gênero Gnamptogenys Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Ectatomminae Cytogenetic studies in Neotropical ants of the genus Gnamptogenys Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Ectatomminae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davileide S. Borges

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Foram caracterizados os cariótipos de três espécies neotropicais do gênero Gnamptogenys Roger: Gnamptogenys striatula Mayr, Gnamptogenys sp. e Gnamptogenys annulata Mayr, coletadas em Viçosa (Minas Gerais e Ilhéus (Bahia. O número cromossômico de G. striatula nas duas localidades foi 2n=34, com fórmula cariotípica 2K=24M+10A. Em Gnamptogenys sp., o número cromossômico foi de 2n=46 (fêmea e n=23 (machos, com a fórmula cariotípica 2K=18M+28A. O número cromossômico de G. annulata foi 2n=68 com a fórmula cariotípica 2K= 6M+62A. Esse tipo de estudo complementa outros estudos iniciados por nosso grupo sobre a citogenética das formigas poneromorfas (sensu Bolton e poderá contribuir no melhor entendimento da evolução das formigas deste grupo considerado primitivo.Studies on the karyotypes of three Neotropical species of the genus Gnamptogenys (Ectatomminae, Ectatommini have been carried out: Gnamptogenys striatula Mayr, Gnamptogenys sp. and Gnamptogenys annulata Mayr, collected at Viçosa (Minas Gerais, Brazil and Ilheus (Bahia, Brazil. The chromosome number of G. striatula was established from individuals taken in colonies from both localities was 2n=34, with the karyotype formula 2K=24M+10A. In Gnamptogenys sp., the chromosomal number was 2n=46 (females and n=23 (males, and its karyotype formula was 2K=18M+28A. The chromosomal number of G. annulata was 2n=68 with the karyotype 2K= 6M + 62A. This study complements THOse carried out by our research group on cytogenetics of the poneromorph ants (sensu Bolton and would contribute to the better understanding of the ant evolution in this group considered primitive.

  10. Predation and aggressiveness in host plant protection: a generalization using ants from the genus Azteca

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Grangier, Julien; Leroy, Céline; Orivel, Jerôme

    2009-01-01

    In studying the ant genus Azteca, a Neotropical group of arboreal species, we aimed to determine the extent to which the ants use predation and/or aggressiveness to protect their host plants from defoliating insects. We compared a territorially dominant, carton-nester, Azteca chartifex, and three plant-ant species. Azteca alfari and Azteca ovaticeps are associated with the myrmecophyte Cecropia (Cecropiaceae) and their colonies shelter in its hollow branches; whereas Azteca bequaerti is associated with Tococa guianensis (Melastomataceae) and its colonies shelter in leaf pouches situated at the base of the laminas. Whereas A. bequaerti workers react to the vibrations transmitted by the lamina when an alien insect lands on a leaf making it unnecessary for them to patrol their plant, the workers of the three other species rather discover prey by contact. The workers of all four species use a predatory behaviour involving spread-eagling alien insects after recruiting nestmates at short range, and, in some cases, at long range. Because A. alfari and A. ovaticeps discard part of the insects they kill, we deduced that the workers’ predatory behaviour and territorial aggressiveness combine in the biotic defence of their host tree.

  11. Ant-plant mutualism: a dietary by-product of a tropical ant's macronutrient requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcila Hernández, Lina M; Sanders, Jon G; Miller, Gabriel A; Ravenscraft, Alison; Frederickson, Megan E

    2017-12-01

    Many arboreal ants depend on myrmecophytic plants for both food and shelter; in return, these ants defend their host plants against herbivores, which are often insects. Ant-plant and other mutualisms do not necessarily involve the exchange of costly rewards or services; they may instead result from by-product benefits, or positive outcomes that do not entail a cost for one or both partners. Here, we examined whether the plant-ant Allomerus octoarticulatus pays a short-term cost to defend their host plants against herbivores, or whether plant defense is a by-product benefit of ant foraging for insect prey. Because the food offered by ant-plants is usually nitrogen-poor, arboreal ants may balance their diets by consuming insect prey or associating with microbial symbionts to acquire nitrogen, potentially shifting the costs and benefits of plant defense for the ant partner. To determine the effect of ant diet on an ant-plant mutualism, we compared the behavior, morphology, fitness, stable isotope signatures, and gaster microbiomes of A. octoarticulatus ants nesting in Cordia nodosa trees maintained for nearly a year with or without insect herbivores. At the end of the experiment, ants from herbivore exclosures preferred protein-rich baits more than ants in the control (i.e., herbivores present) treatment. Furthermore, workers in the control treatment were heavier than in the herbivore-exclusion treatment, and worker mass predicted reproductive output, suggesting that foraging for insect prey directly increased ant colony fitness. The gaster microbiome of ants was not significantly affected by the herbivore exclusion treatment. We conclude that the defensive behavior of some phytoecious ants is a by-product of their need for external protein sources; thus, the consumption of insect herbivores by ants benefits both the ant colony and the host plant. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  12. Ant-lepidopteran associations along African forest edges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Azémar, Frédéric; Libert, Michel; Compin, Arthur; Hérault, Bruno; Orivel, Jérôme; Bouyer, Thierry; Corbara, Bruno

    2017-02-01

    Working along forest edges, we aimed to determine how some caterpillars can co-exist with territorially dominant arboreal ants (TDAAs) in tropical Africa. We recorded caterpillars from 22 lepidopteran species living in the presence of five TDAA species. Among the defoliator and/or nectarivorous caterpillars that live on tree foliage, the Pyralidae and Nymphalidae use their silk to protect themselves from ant attacks. The Notodontidae and lycaenid Polyommatinae and Theclinae live in direct contact with ants; the Theclinae even reward ants with abundant secretions from their Newcomer gland. Lichen feeders (lycaenid; Poritiinae), protected by long bristles, also live among ants. Some lycaenid Miletinae caterpillars feed on ant-attended membracids, including in the shelters where the ants attend them; Lachnocnema caterpillars use their forelegs to obtain trophallaxis from their host ants. Caterpillars from other species live inside weaver ant nests. Those of the genus Euliphyra (Miletinae) feed on ant prey and brood and can obtain trophallaxis, while those from an Eberidae species only prey on host ant eggs. Eublemma albifascia (Erebidae) caterpillars use their thoracic legs to obtain trophallaxis and trophic eggs from ants. Through transfer bioassays of last instars, we noted that herbivorous caterpillars living in contact with ants were always accepted by alien conspecific ants; this is likely due to an intrinsic appeasing odor. Yet, caterpillars living in ant shelters or ant nests probably acquire cues from their host colonies because they were considered aliens and killed. We conclude that co-evolution with ants occurred similarly in the Heterocera and Rhopalocera.

  13. [Neotropical plant morphology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-García, Blanca; Mendoza, Aniceto

    2002-01-01

    An analysis on plant morphology and the sources that are important to the morphologic interpretations is done. An additional analysis is presented on all published papers in this subject by the Revista de Biología Tropical since its foundation, as well as its contribution to the plant morphology development in the neotropics.

  14. The Life of a Dead Ant : The Expression of an Adaptive Extended Phenotype

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Andersen, Sandra B.; Gerritsma, Sylvia; Yusah, Kalsum M.; Mayntz, David; Hywel-Jones, Nigel L.; Billen, Johan; Boomsma, Jacobus J.; Hughes, David P.

    Specialized parasites are expected to express complex adaptations to their hosts. Manipulation of host behavior is such an adaptation. We studied the fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, a locally specialized parasite of arboreal Camponotus leonardi ants. Ant-infecting Ophiocordyceps are known to

  15. Ann Arbor Session I: Breaking Ground.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Music Educators Journal, 1979

    1979-01-01

    Summarizes the first session of the National Symposium on the Applications of Psychology to the Teaching and Learning of Music held at Ann Arbor from October 30 to November 2, 1978. Sessions concerned auditory perception, motor learning, child development, memory and information processing, and affect and motivation. (SJL)

  16. Harnessing ant defence at fruits reduces bruchid seed predation in a symbiotic ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G

    2014-06-22

    In horizontally transmitted mutualisms, mutualists disperse separately and reassemble in each generation with partners genetically unrelated to those in the previous generation. Because of this, there should be no selection on either partner to enhance the other's reproductive output directly. In symbiotic ant-plant mutualisms, myrmecophytic plants host defensive ant colonies, and ants defend the plants from herbivores. Plants and ants disperse separately, and, although ant defence can indirectly increase plant reproduction by reducing folivory, it is unclear whether ants can also directly increase plant reproduction by defending seeds. The neotropical tree Cordia alliodora hosts colonies of Azteca pittieri ants. The trees produce domatia where ants nest at stem nodes and also at the node between the peduncle and the rachides of the infloresence. Unlike the stem domatia, these reproductive domatia senesce after the tree fruits each year. In this study, I show that the tree's resident ant colony moves into these ephemeral reproductive domatia, where they tend honeydew-producing scale insects and patrol the nearby developing fruits. The presence of ants significantly reduced pre-dispersal seed predation by Amblycerus bruchid beetles, thereby directly increasing plant reproductive output.

  17. The Antsy Social Network: Determinants of Nest Structure and Arrangement in Asian Weaver Ants

    OpenAIRE

    Devarajan, Kadambari

    2016-01-01

    Asian weaver ants (Oecophylla smaragdina) are arboreal ants that are known to form mutualistic complexes with their host trees. They are eusocial ants that build elaborate nests in the canopy in tropical areas. A colony comprises of multiple nests, usually on multiple trees, and the boundaries of the colony may be difficult to identify. However, they provide the ideal model for studying group living in invertebrates since there are a definite number of nests for a given substrate, the tree. H...

  18. Natural canopy bridges effectively mitigate tropical forest fragmentation for arboreal mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, Tremaine; Carrasco-Rueda, Farah; Alonso, Alfonso; Kolowski, Joseph; Deichmann, Jessica L

    2017-06-20

    Linear infrastructure development and resulting habitat fragmentation are expanding in Neotropical forests, and arboreal mammals may be disproportionately impacted by these linear habitat clearings. Maintaining canopy connectivity through preservation of connecting branches (i.e. natural canopy bridges) may help mitigate that impact. Using camera traps, we evaluated crossing rates of a pipeline right-of-way in a control area with no bridges and in a test area where 13 bridges were left by the pipeline construction company. Monitoring all canopy crossing points for a year (7,102 canopy camera nights), we confirmed bridge use by 25 mammal species from 12 families. With bridge use beginning immediately after exposure and increasing over time, use rates were over two orders of magnitude higher than on the ground. We also found a positive relationship between a bridge's use rate and the number of species that used it, suggesting well-used bridges benefit multiple species. Data suggest bridge use may be related to a combination of bridge branch connectivity, multiple connections, connectivity to adjacent forest, and foliage cover. Given the high use rate and minimal cost, we recommend all linear infrastructure projects in forests with arboreal mammal populations include canopy bridges.

  19. The evolution of genome size in ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spagna Joseph C

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite the economic and ecological importance of ants, genomic tools for this family (Formicidae remain woefully scarce. Knowledge of genome size, for example, is a useful and necessary prerequisite for the development of many genomic resources, yet it has been reported for only one ant species (Solenopsis invicta, and the two published estimates for this species differ by 146.7 Mb (0.15 pg. Results Here, we report the genome size for 40 species of ants distributed across 10 of the 20 currently recognized subfamilies, thus making Formicidae the 4th most surveyed insect family and elevating the Hymenoptera to the 5th most surveyed insect order. Our analysis spans much of the ant phylogeny, from the less derived Amblyoponinae and Ponerinae to the more derived Myrmicinae, Formicinae and Dolichoderinae. We include a number of interesting and important taxa, including the invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile, Neotropical army ants (genera Eciton and Labidus, trapjaw ants (Odontomachus, fungus-growing ants (Apterostigma, Atta and Sericomyrmex, harvester ants (Messor, Pheidole and Pogonomyrmex, carpenter ants (Camponotus, a fire ant (Solenopsis, and a bulldog ant (Myrmecia. Our results show that ants possess small genomes relative to most other insects, yet genome size varies three-fold across this insect family. Moreover, our data suggest that two whole-genome duplications may have occurred in the ancestors of the modern Ectatomma and Apterostigma. Although some previous studies of other taxa have revealed a relationship between genome size and body size, our phylogenetically-controlled analysis of this correlation did not reveal a significant relationship. Conclusion This is the first analysis of genome size in ants (Formicidae and the first across multiple species of social insects. We show that genome size is a variable trait that can evolve gradually over long time spans, as well as rapidly, through processes that may

  20. Art and Reality in The Arbor (2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mello Cecília

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This article offers an in-depth analysis of 2010 British film The Arbor by Clio Barnard. The director’s debut feature is a groundbreaking work dedicated to the lives of playwright Andrea Dunbar and her eldest daughter Lorraine. Dunbar grew up in the Buttershaw Estate in Bradford and drew on her own experiences to write her first play The Arbor at the age of 15, followed by Rita, Sue and Bob Too!. She struggled with alcoholism and died of a brain haemorrhage in 1990, at the age of 29. Lorraine’s life followed down a difficult path as she became a drug addict and was jailed for manslaughter for causing the death of her two-year old child by gross neglect. My aim is to explore how the film combines different media, namely theatre, television and radio, in a cinematic experience defined by multiple registers and multiple voices, and how this structure works towards creating as much as conserving individual and collective memories, highlighting the fictional nature of memories. This leads to a reflection on the lip-synching technique, employed as the main vehicle for memory in the film, which provokes as much empathy and compassion as it does critical thinking, thus turning Brecht’s binary equation reason-emotion in its head.1

  1. An Intermediate Value Theorem for the Arboricities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avapa Chantasartrassmee

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Let G be a graph. The vertex (edge arboricity of G denoted by a(G (a1(G is the minimum number of subsets into which the vertex (edge set of G can be partitioned so that each subset induces an acyclic subgraph. Let d be a graphical sequence and let R(d be the class of realizations of d. We prove that if π∈{a,a1}, then there exist integers x(π and y(π such that d has a realization G with π(G=z if and only if z is an integer satisfying x(π≤z≤y(π. Thus, for an arbitrary graphical sequence d and π∈{a,a1}, the two invariants x(π=min(π,d:=min{π(G:G∈R(d} and  y(π=max(π,d:=max{π(G:G∈R(d} naturally arise and hence π(d:={π(G:G∈R(d}={z∈Z:x(π≤z≤y(π}. We write d=rn:=(r,r,…,r for the degree sequence of an r-regular graph of order n. We prove that a1(rn={⌈(r+1/2⌉}. We consider the corresponding extremal problem on vertex arboricity and obtain min(a,rn in all situations and max(a,rn for all n≥2r+2.

  2. Beyond ANT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jansen, Till

    2017-01-01

    Actor-Network-Theory (ANT) offers an ‘infra-language’ of the social that allows one to trace social relations very dynamically, while at the same time dissolving human agency, thus providing a flat and de-centred way into sociology. However, ANT struggles with its theoretical design that may lead...... us to reduce agency to causation and to conceptualize actor-networks as homogeneous ontologies of force. This article proposes to regard ANT’s inability to conceptualize reflexivity and the interrelatedness of different ontologies as the fundamental problem of the theory. Drawing on Günther......, it offers an ‘infra-language’ of reflexive relations while maintaining ANT’s de-centred approach. This would enable us to conceptualize actor-networks as non-homogeneous, dynamic and connecting different societal rationales while maintaining the main strengths of ANT....

  3. Endophytic fungi reduce leaf-cutting ant damage to seedlings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittleston, L. S.; Brockmann, F.; Wcislo, W.; Van Bael, S. A.

    2011-01-01

    Our study examines how the mutualism between Atta colombica leaf-cutting ants and their cultivated fungus is influenced by the presence of diverse foliar endophytic fungi (endophytes) at high densities in tropical leaf tissues. We conducted laboratory choice trials in which ant colonies chose between Cordia alliodora seedlings with high (Ehigh) or low (Elow) densities of endophytes. The Ehigh seedlings contained 5.5 times higher endophyte content and a greater diversity of fungal morphospecies than the Elow treatment, and endophyte content was not correlated with leaf toughness or thickness. Leaf-cutting ants cut over 2.5 times the leaf area from Elow relative to Ehigh seedlings and had a tendency to recruit more ants to Elow plants. Our findings suggest that leaf-cutting ants may incur costs from cutting and processing leaves with high endophyte loads, which could impact Neotropical forests by causing variable damage rates within plant communities. PMID:20610420

  4. Characterizing the Spatial Density Functions of Neural Arbors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teeter, Corinne Michelle

    Recently, it has been proposed that a universal function describes the way in which all arbors (axons and dendrites) spread their branches over space. Data from fish retinal ganglion cells as well as cortical and hippocampal arbors from mouse, rat, cat, monkey and human provide evidence that all arbor density functions (adf) can be described by a Gaussian function truncated at approximately two standard deviations. A Gaussian density function implies that there is a minimal set of parameters needed to describe an adf: two or three standard deviations (depending on the dimensionality of the arbor) and an amplitude. However, the parameters needed to completely describe an adf could be further constrained by a scaling law found between the product of the standard deviations and the amplitude of the function. In the following document, I examine the scaling law relationship in order to determine the minimal set of parameters needed to describe an adf. First, I find that the at, two-dimensional arbors of fish retinal ganglion cells require only two out of the three fundamental parameters to completely describe their density functions. Second, the three-dimensional, volume filling, cortical arbors require four fundamental parameters: three standard deviations and the total length of an arbor (which corresponds to the amplitude of the function). Next, I characterize the shape of arbors in the context of the fundamental parameters. I show that the parameter distributions of the fish retinal ganglion cells are largely homogenous. In general, axons are bigger and less dense than dendrites; however, they are similarly shaped. The parameter distributions of these two arbor types overlap and, therefore, can only be differentiated from one another probabilistically based on their adfs. Despite artifacts in the cortical arbor data, different types of arbors (apical dendrites, non-apical dendrites, and axons) can generally be differentiated based on their adfs. In addition, within

  5. Final Technical Report, Wind Generator Project (Ann Arbor)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geisler, Nathan [City of Ann Arbor, MI (United States)

    2017-03-20

    A Final Technical Report (57 pages) describing educational exhibits and devices focused on wind energy, and related outreach activities and programs. Project partnership includes the City of Ann Arbor, MI and the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum, along with additional sub-recipients, and U.S. Department of Energy/Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Report relays key milestones and sub-tasks as well as numerous graphics and images of five (5) transportable wind energy demonstration devices and five (5) wind energy exhibits designed and constructed between 2014 and 2016 for transport and use by the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum.

  6. The effect of water on the ground nesting habits of the giant tropical ant, Paraponera clavata

    OpenAIRE

    Elahi, Robin

    2005-01-01

    The large predatory ant, Paraponera clavata, exerts measurable top-down effects in wet and moist Neotropical forests, and therefore its distribution has potential ecological implications. To determine how water affects the presence of this important predator, the ground nesting ecology of P. clavata was examined with respect to various habitat characteristics. Four hectares of disturbed Costa Rican lowland rain forest were surveyed for ant colonies to determine nest distribution patterns in w...

  7. Phylogenetics of neotropical Platymiscium (Leguminosae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saslis-Lagoudakis, C. Haris; Chase, Mark W; Robinson, Daniel N

    2008-01-01

    Platymiscium is a neotropical legume genus of forest trees in the Pterocarpus clade of the pantropical "dalbergioid" clade. It comprises 19 species (29 taxa), distributed from Mexico to southern Brazil. This study presents a molecular phylogenetic analysis of Platymiscium and allies inferred from...

  8. Associations of Two Ecologically Significant Social Insect Taxa in the Litter of an Amazonian Rainforest: Is There a Relationship between Ant and Termite Species Richness?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy L. Mertl

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In spite of the ecological dominance of Neotropical ants and termites, little is understood about how their interactions influence their species richness and distribution. We surveyed ground-dwelling termite and ant species in a primary rainforest in Ecuador and analyzed ecological correlates of diversity. Termite richness was positively correlated with ant richness and abundance of twig-nesting ants. We found no evidence of competition for twigs between termites and ants. No ecological factors were correlated with termite diversity although elevation and twig and log abundance influenced ant diversity. When ant richness was compared to the richness of termites employing different predator defenses, a positive correlation was found with soldierless termites, but not genera employing chemical or mechanical defense. Our results suggest that multiple ecological factors influence ant and termite diversity, and that ant predation on termites may have a greater effect than competition between ant and termites for nest sites and food sources.

  9. Morphometric evaluation of Arbor Acre parent stock broilers reared ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Morphometric evaluation of Arbor Acre parent stock broilers reared in ... Economic importance of morphometric parameters such as live weight and body ... (R2) value of 60.30 included forecast indices such as BL, WS, WL, TL, BG and SL.

  10. Simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages in response to increasing urbanization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaac, Bronwyn; White, John; Ierodiaconou, Daniel; Cooke, Raylene

    2014-01-01

    Arboreal marsupials play an essential role in ecosystem function including regulating insect and plant populations, facilitating pollen and seed dispersal and acting as a prey source for higher-order carnivores in Australian environments. Primarily, research has focused on their biology, ecology and response to disturbance in forested and urban environments. We used presence-only species distribution modelling to understand the relationship between occurrences of arboreal marsupials and eco-geographical variables, and to infer habitat suitability across an urban gradient. We used post-proportional analysis to determine whether increasing urbanization affected potential habitat for arboreal marsupials. The key eco-geographical variables that influenced disturbance intolerant species and those with moderate tolerance to disturbance were natural features such as tree cover and proximity to rivers and to riparian vegetation, whereas variables for disturbance tolerant species were anthropogenic-based (e.g., road density) but also included some natural characteristics such as proximity to riparian vegetation, elevation and tree cover. Arboreal marsupial diversity was subject to substantial change along the gradient, with potential habitat for disturbance-tolerant marsupials distributed across the complete gradient and potential habitat for less tolerant species being restricted to the natural portion of the gradient. This resulted in highly-urbanized environments being inhabited by a few generalist arboreal marsupial species. Increasing urbanization therefore leads to functional simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages, thus impacting on the ecosystem services they provide.

  11. Simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages in response to increasing urbanization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bronwyn Isaac

    Full Text Available Arboreal marsupials play an essential role in ecosystem function including regulating insect and plant populations, facilitating pollen and seed dispersal and acting as a prey source for higher-order carnivores in Australian environments. Primarily, research has focused on their biology, ecology and response to disturbance in forested and urban environments. We used presence-only species distribution modelling to understand the relationship between occurrences of arboreal marsupials and eco-geographical variables, and to infer habitat suitability across an urban gradient. We used post-proportional analysis to determine whether increasing urbanization affected potential habitat for arboreal marsupials. The key eco-geographical variables that influenced disturbance intolerant species and those with moderate tolerance to disturbance were natural features such as tree cover and proximity to rivers and to riparian vegetation, whereas variables for disturbance tolerant species were anthropogenic-based (e.g., road density but also included some natural characteristics such as proximity to riparian vegetation, elevation and tree cover. Arboreal marsupial diversity was subject to substantial change along the gradient, with potential habitat for disturbance-tolerant marsupials distributed across the complete gradient and potential habitat for less tolerant species being restricted to the natural portion of the gradient. This resulted in highly-urbanized environments being inhabited by a few generalist arboreal marsupial species. Increasing urbanization therefore leads to functional simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages, thus impacting on the ecosystem services they provide.

  12. Fire Ant Bites

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Favorite Name: Category: Share: Yes No, Keep Private Fire Ant Bites Share | Fire ants are aggressive, venomous insects that have pinching ... across the United States, even into Puerto Rico. Fire ant stings usually occur on the feet or ...

  13. Arachnid aloft: directed aerial descent in neotropical canopy spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanoviak, Stephen P; Munk, Yonatan; Dudley, Robert

    2015-09-06

    The behaviour of directed aerial descent has been described for numerous taxa of wingless hexapods as they fall from the tropical rainforest canopy, but is not known in other terrestrial arthropods. Here, we describe similar controlled aerial behaviours for large arboreal spiders in the genus Selenops (Selenopidae). We dropped 59 such spiders from either canopy platforms or tree crowns in Panama and Peru; the majority (93%) directed their aerial trajectories towards and then landed upon nearby tree trunks. Following initial dorsoventral righting when necessary, falling spiders oriented themselves and then translated head-first towards targets; directional changes were correlated with bilaterally asymmetric motions of the anterolaterally extended forelegs. Aerial performance (i.e. the glide index) decreased with increasing body mass and wing loading, but not with projected surface area of the spider. Along with the occurrence of directed aerial descent in ants, jumping bristletails, and other wingless hexapods, this discovery of targeted gliding in selenopid spiders further indicates strong selective pressures against uncontrolled falls into the understory for arboreal taxa. © 2015 The Author(s).

  14. The life of a dead ant -the expression of an adaptive extended phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Sandra Breum; Gerritsma, Sylvia; Yusah, Kalsum M.

    2009-01-01

    to make hosts bite onto vegetation prior to killing them. We show that this represents a fine-tuned fungal adaptation: an extended phenotype. Dead ants were found under leaves, attached by their mandibles, on the northern side of saplings ca. 25 cm above the soil, where temperature and humidity conditions......Specialized parasites are expected to express complex adaptations to their hosts. Manipulation of host behavior is such an adaptation. We studied the fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, a locally specialized parasite of arboreal Camponotus leonardi ants. Ant-infecting Ophiocordyceps are known...

  15. Comparative Phylogeography of Neotropical Birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-05-01

    birds, butterflies, plants , soil type, and precipitation (Whitmore and Prance 1987); (C) study populations based largely on neo-tropical lowland...Caballero, A. 1994. Developments in the prediction of effective population size. Heredity 73:657- 679. Camargo, A., R. O. De Sa, and W. R. Heyer. 2006...157-183. Hamrick, J. L., and M. J. W. Godt. 1996. Effects of life history traits on genetic diversity in plant species. Philosophical Transactions Of

  16. Synergistic effects of fire and elephants on arboreal animals in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Robert M; Kimuyu, Duncan M; Sensenig, Ryan L; Palmer, Todd M; Riginos, Corinna; Veblen, Kari E; Young, Truman P

    2015-11-01

    Disturbance is a crucial determinant of animal abundance, distribution and community structure in many ecosystems, but the ways in which multiple disturbance types interact remain poorly understood. The effects of multiple-disturbance interactions can be additive, subadditive or super-additive (synergistic). Synergistic effects in particular can accelerate ecological change; thus, characterizing such synergies, the conditions under which they arise, and how long they persist has been identified as a major goal of ecology. We factorially manipulated two principal sources of disturbance in African savannas, fire and elephants, and measured their independent and interactive effects on the numerically dominant vertebrate (the arboreal gekkonid lizard Lygodactylus keniensis) and invertebrate (a guild of symbiotic Acacia ants) animal species in a semi-arid Kenyan savanna. Elephant exclusion alone (minus fire) had negligible effects on gecko density. Fire alone (minus elephants) had negligible effects on gecko density after 4 months, but increased gecko density twofold after 16 months, likely because the decay of fire-damaged woody biomass created refuges and nest sites for geckos. In the presence of elephants, fire increased gecko density nearly threefold within 4 months of the experimental burn; this occurred because fire increased the incidence of elephant damage to trees, which in turn improved microhabitat quality for geckos. However, this synergistic positive effect of fire and elephants attenuated over the ensuing year, such that only the main effect of fire was evident after 16 months. Fire also altered the structure of symbiotic plant-ant assemblages occupying the dominant tree species (Acacia drepanolobium); this influenced gecko habitat selection but did not explain the synergistic effect of fire and elephants. However, fire-driven shifts in plant-ant occupancy may have indirectly mediated this effect by increasing trees' susceptibility to elephant damage. Our

  17. First cytogenetic characterization of a species of the arboreal ant genus Azteca Forel, 1978 (Dolichoderinae, Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danon Cardoso

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present, for the first time, a detailed karyotype characterization of a species of the genus Azteca (Dolichoderinae, Formicidae. Cerebral ganglia from Azteca trigona Emery, 1893 were excised and submitted to colchicine hypotonic solution and chromosomal preparations were analyzed through conventional staining with Giemsa, C-banding, silver nitrate staining (AgNO3 and sequential base-specific fluorochromes. The analysis shows that A. trigona has a diploid number of 28 chromosomes. The karyotype consists of five metacentric pairs, seven acrocentric pairs and two pseudo-acrocentric pairs, which represents a karyotype formula 2K= 10M + 14A + 4AM and a diploid number of the arms 2AN = 38. The analysis of heterochromatin distribution revealed a positive block on distal region of the short arm of fourth metacentric pair, which was coincident with Ag-NOR band and CMA3 fluorochrome staining, meaning that rDNA sequences are interspaced by GC-rich base pairs sequences. The C-banding also marked short arms of other chromosomes, indicating centric fissions followed by heterochromatin growth. The karyotype analysis of A. trigona allowed the identification of cytogenetic markers that will be helpful in a difficult taxonomic group as Azteca and discussion about evolutionary aspects of the genome organization.

  18. Disentangling the diversity of arboreal ant communities in tropical forest trees

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klimeš, Petr; Fibich, P.; Idigel, C.; Rimandai, M.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 10, č. 2 (2015), e0117853 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA ČR GPP505/12/P875; GA MŠk(CZ) LH11008; GA ČR GB14-36098G Grant - others:European Social Fund(CZ) CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0064 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : tropical forest trees Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.057, year: 2015 http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0117853

  19. Why are there more arboreal ant species in primary than in secondary tropical forests?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klimeš, Petr; Idigel, C.; Rimandai, M.; Fayle, T. M.; Janda, Milan; Weiblen, G. D.; Novotný, Vojtěch

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 81, č. 5 (2012), s. 1103-1112 ISSN 0021-8790 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/10/0673; GA ČR GD206/08/H044; GA AV ČR IAA600960712; GA MŠk LC06073; GA MŠk(CZ) LH11008; GA MŠk ME09082; GA ČR GPP505/12/P875 Grant - others:Grant Agency of University of South Bohemia(CZ) 052/2010/P; Grant Agency of University of South Bohemia(CZ) 136/2010/P; U. S. National Science Foundation(US) DEB-0841885; U. S. National Science Foundation(US) DEB-0816749; Marie Curie Fellowships(CZ) PIOF-GA-2009-254448; European Social Fund(CZ) CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0064 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : diveristy partitioning * Formicidae * habitat disturbance Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.841, year: 2012 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2656.2012.02002.x/pdf

  20. Poneromorph Ants Associated with Parasitoid Wasps of the Genus Kapala Cameron (Hymenoptera: Eucharitidae in French Guiana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Paul Lachaud

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Eucharitid wasps are specific, specialized parasitoids of ants. The genus Kapala Cameron is the most common in the Neotropics but few species are described, and information dealing with their biology, behavior and host associations is scarce. Numerous poneromorph ant colonies were inspected over 4 collection surveys in French Guiana. A diverse fauna of parasites and parasitoids was found, including mermithid nematodes, flies, eucharitids, and another gregarious endoparasitoid wasp. Five new host associations for Kapala are reported, all of them involving medium- to large-size poneromorph ant species from 4 genera: Ectatomma brunneum Fr. Smith, Gnamptogenys tortuolosa (Fr. Smith, Odontomachus haematodus (L., O. mayi Mann, and Pachycondyla verenae (Forel. Three other associations involving O. hastatus (Fabr., P. apicalis (Latreille, and P. stigma (Fabr., already reported for other countries but new for French Guiana, are confirmed. The data extend the number of hosts for Kapala to 24 ant species from 7 genera. The high diversity of the ant host genera associated with Kapala, combined with the fact that these ant genera are the most widely distributed among Neotropical poneromorph ants, could account for the dominant status of the genus Kapala among the eucharitine wasps of Central and South America.

  1. Habitat constraints on the distribution of passerine residents and neotropical migrants in Latin America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, C.S.; Dowell, B.A.; Dawson, D.K.

    1994-01-01

    With continuing tropical deforestation, there is increased concern for birds that depend on forest habitats in Latin America. During the past 10 northern winters, we have conducted quantitative studies of habitat use by wintering migrant songbirds and by residents in the Greater Antilles, Mexico, Central America, and northern South America. Many migrants, but few residents, winter in forest fragments and in certain arboreal agricultural habitats (citrus, cacao, shade coffee). Many other agricultural habitats (sun coffee, mango, commercial banana plantations, and heavily grazed pasture) are avoided by most birds. Some species, such as thrushes and ground-feeding warblers, depend on closed-canopy forest. Some, such as Northern Waterthrush (Seiurus noveboracensis) and Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea), winter primarily in mangroves or other swamp forests. The majority of neotropical migrant passerines winter in forest fragments and certain agricultural habitats, as well as mature forest; but many resident species, especially suboscines (Furnariidae, Dendrocolaptidae, Formicariidae, Papridae), are heavily impacted by loss and fragmentation of the forest.

  2. Estimation of arboreal lichen biomass available to woodland caribou in Hudson Bay lowland black spruce sites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah K. Proceviat

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available An arboreal lichen index to be utilized in assessing woodland caribou habitat throughout northeastern Ontario was developed. The "index" was comprised of 5 classes, which differentiated arboreal lichen biomass on black spruce trees, ranging from maximal quantities of arboreal lichen (class 5 to minimal amounts of arboreal lichen (class 1. This arboreal lichen index was subsequently used to estimate the biomass of arboreal lichen available to woodland caribou on lowland black spruce sites ranging in age from 1 year to 150 years post-harvest. A total of 39 sites were assessed and significant differences in arboreal lichen biomass were found, with a positive linear relationship between arboreal lichen biomass and forest age. It is proposed that the index be utilized by government and industry as a means of assessing the suitability of lowland black spruce habitat for woodland caribou in this region.

  3. Nyctanthes arbor-tristis L. of Oleaceae (Sanskrit: Parijatham, Hindi ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Nyctanthes arbor-tristis L. of Oleaceae (Sanskrit: Parijatham, Hindi: Harsinghar or Parja) is a small ornamental tree which is often grown in temples for its fragrant Dowers. Flowers are small, white with a bright orange corolla tube. Fruit is bilaterally compressed. The yellowish dye extracted from the flowers is used to colour ...

  4. Snail arboreality: the microdistribution of Sitala jenynsi (Gastropoda ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The habitats and patterns of vertical migration of the shell banding morphs of the snail Sitala jenynsi (Pfeiffer) were studied in Dar es Salaam and Wazo regions of central coastal Tanzania Both dimorphic and trimorphic populations were arboreal throughout the year. The snails occurred randomly within mid-heights 180 to ...

  5. THE LATE TRIASSIC ARCHOSAUROMORPH TRILOPHOSAURUS AS AN ARBOREAL CLIMBER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JUSTIN A. SPIELMANN

    2005-11-01

    Full Text Available Two species of the unusual archosauromorph Trilophosaurus, T. buettneri Case and T. jacobsi Murry, are known from diverse localities in the Upper Triassic Chinle Group in the southwestern USA. Both species likely occupied similar ecological niches, based on morphological similarities in the postcrania, which are essentially identical. Trilophosaurus occurrences in the Chinle Group are relatively rare, but individual sites are exceptionally rich, suggesting that Trilophosaurus lived in a different paleoenvironment than more typical Chinle vertebrates, which lived in or near streams (phytosaurs, metoposaurs or on floodplains (aetosaurs, rauisuchians, and dinosaurs. Two potential interpretations are that Trilophosaurus was either an arboreal climber or a fossorial digger. However, the gross skeletal features of Trilophosaurus are not compatible with a fossorial mode of life: the limbs are too long and gracile, proximal limb elements are longer than distal ones, and the claws are laterally compressed, not transversely broadened. The intermittent study of Trilophosaurus has caused the theory of it being arboreal, originally proposed by Gregory, to receive little mention in subsequent studies. We reexamined the functional morphology of Trilophosaurus using a qualitative functional morphological analysis of the skeleton, a quantitative examination of claw curvature, and a quantitative examination of manus/trunk and pes/trunk ratios. Claw morphology of Trilophosaurus shows similarities to the arboreal drepanosaurs Drepanosaurus and Megalancosaurus. Our analysis provides ample evidence to suggest that Trilophosaurus was arboreal

  6. Spider diversity in coffee agroecosystems: the influence of agricultural intensification and aggressive ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marín, Linda; Perfecto, Ivette

    2013-04-01

    Spiders are a very diverse group of invertebrate predators found in agroecosystems and natural systems. However, spider distribution, abundance, and eventually their ecological function in ecosystems can be influenced by abiotic and biotic factors such as agricultural intensification and dominant ants. Here we explore the influence of both agricultural intensification and the dominant arboreal ant Azteca instabilis on the spider community in coffee agroecosystems in southern Mexico. To measure the influence of the arboreal ant Azteca instabilis (F. Smith) on the spider community inhabiting the coffee layer of coffee agroecosystems, spiders were collected from coffee plants that were and were not patrolled by the ant in sites differing in agricultural intensification. For 2008, generalized linear mixed models showed that spider diversity was affected positively by agricultural intensification but not by the ant. However, results suggested that some spider species were associated with A. instabilis. Therefore, in 2009 we concentrated our research on the effect of A. instabilis on spider diversity and composition. For 2009, generalized linear mixed models show that spider richness and abundance per plant were significantly higher in the presence of A. instabilis. In addition, analyses of visual counts of insects and sticky traps data show that more resources were present in plants patrolled by the ant. The positive effect of A. instabilis on spiders seems to be caused by at least two mechanisms: high abundance of insects and protection against predators.

  7. Temporal Variation in the Abundance and Richness of Foliage-Dwelling Ants Mediated by Extrafloral Nectar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belchior, Ceres; Sendoya, Sebastián F; Del-Claro, Kleber

    2016-01-01

    Plants bearing extrafloral nectaries (EFNs) are common in the Brazilian cerrado savanna, where climatic conditions having marked seasonality influence arboreal ant fauna organization. These ant-plant interactions have rarely been studied at community level. Here, we tested whether: 1) EFN-bearing plants are more visited by ants than EFN-lacking plants; 2) ant visitation is higher in the rainy season than in dry season; 3) plants producing young leaves are more visited than those lacking young leaves in the rainy season; 4) during the dry season, plants with old leaves and flowers are more visited than plants with young leaves and bare of leaves or flowers; 5) the composition of visiting ant fauna differs between plants with and without EFNs. Field work was done in a cerrado reserve near Uberlândia, MG State, Brazil, along ten transects (total area 3,000 m2), in the rainy (October-January) and dry seasons (April-July) of 2010-2011. Plants (72 species; 762 individuals) were checked three times per season for ant presence. Results showed that 21 species (29%) and 266 individuals (35%) possessed EFNs. These plants attracted 38 ant species (36 in rainy, 26 in dry season). In the rainy season, plants with EFNs had higher ant abundance/richness than plants without EFNs, but in the dry season, EFN presence did not influence ant visitation. Plant phenology affected ant richness and abundance in different ways: plants with young leaves possessed higher ant richness in the rainy season, but in the dry season ant abundance was higher on plants possessing old leaves or flowers. The species composition of plant-associated ant communities, however, did not differ between plants with and without EFNs in either season. These findings suggest that the effect of EFN presence on a community of plant-visiting ants is context dependent, being conditioned to seasonal variation.

  8. Temporal Variation in the Abundance and Richness of Foliage-Dwelling Ants Mediated by Extrafloral Nectar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ceres Belchior

    Full Text Available Plants bearing extrafloral nectaries (EFNs are common in the Brazilian cerrado savanna, where climatic conditions having marked seasonality influence arboreal ant fauna organization. These ant-plant interactions have rarely been studied at community level. Here, we tested whether: 1 EFN-bearing plants are more visited by ants than EFN-lacking plants; 2 ant visitation is higher in the rainy season than in dry season; 3 plants producing young leaves are more visited than those lacking young leaves in the rainy season; 4 during the dry season, plants with old leaves and flowers are more visited than plants with young leaves and bare of leaves or flowers; 5 the composition of visiting ant fauna differs between plants with and without EFNs. Field work was done in a cerrado reserve near Uberlândia, MG State, Brazil, along ten transects (total area 3,000 m2, in the rainy (October-January and dry seasons (April-July of 2010-2011. Plants (72 species; 762 individuals were checked three times per season for ant presence. Results showed that 21 species (29% and 266 individuals (35% possessed EFNs. These plants attracted 38 ant species (36 in rainy, 26 in dry season. In the rainy season, plants with EFNs had higher ant abundance/richness than plants without EFNs, but in the dry season, EFN presence did not influence ant visitation. Plant phenology affected ant richness and abundance in different ways: plants with young leaves possessed higher ant richness in the rainy season, but in the dry season ant abundance was higher on plants possessing old leaves or flowers. The species composition of plant-associated ant communities, however, did not differ between plants with and without EFNs in either season. These findings suggest that the effect of EFN presence on a community of plant-visiting ants is context dependent, being conditioned to seasonal variation.

  9. Current and potential ant impacts in the Pacific region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loope, Lloyd L.; Krushelnycky, Paul D.

    2007-01-01

    Worldwide, ants are a powerful ecological force, and they appear to be dominant components of animal communities of many tropical and temperate ecosystems in terms of biomass and numbers of individuals (Bluthgen et al. 2000). For example, ants comprise up to 94% of arthropod individuals in fogging samples taken from diverse lowland tropical rainforest canopies, and 86% of the biomass (Davidson et al. 2003). The majority of these ant species and individuals obtain carbohydrates either from extrafloral nectaries or from sap-feeding Hemiptera that pass carbohydrate-rich “honeydew” to attending ants while concentrating nitrogen (N) from N-poor plant sap (Davidson et al. 2003). Honeydew and nectar represent key resources for arboreal ant species, although most ant species are at least partly carnivorous or scavengers (Bluthgen et al. 2004). In contrast to most of the terrestrial world, the biotas of many Pacific islands evolved without ants. Whereas endemic ant species are found in New Zealand (ca. 10 spp.), Tonga (ca. 10 spp.), and Samoa (ca. 12 spp.), other islands of Polynesia and parts of Micronesia likely lack native ants (Wilson and Taylor 1967, Wetterer 2002, Wetterer and Vargo 2003). About 20 Indo-Australian and western Pacific ant species range to the east and north of Samoa, but it is unclear how many of these were transported there by humans at some time (Wilson and Taylor 1967). Most of the remainder of the ant species currently found on Pacific islands are widespread species that fall in the category of “tramp species,” dispersed by recent human commerce and generally closely tied to human activity and urban areas (Wilson and Taylor 1967, McGlynn 1999). In Pacific island situations, some of these tramp ant species are able to thrive beyond areas of human activity. Relatively few ant species have been successful invaders of native communities on continents, and these include most of the species that pose the greatest problems for Pacific islands

  10. Investigation of Photovoltaic Assisted Misting System Application for Arbor Refreshment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hikmet Esen

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study, for the first time in the literature, solar assisted cooler with misting system established on an arbor with an area of 24 m2 and georeferenced in Elazig (38.6775° N, 39.1707° E, Turkey, is presented. Here, we present a system that reduces interior temperature of the arbor while increasing humidity. Also, the system generates required electricity with a solar photovoltaic module to power pressurized water pump through an inverter and stores it in a battery for use when there is no sunlight. The model of the photovoltaic module was implemented using a Matlab program. As a result of being an uncomplicated system, return on investment for the system is 3.7 years.

  11. Harnessing ant defence at fruits reduces bruchid seed predation in a symbiotic ant–plant mutualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G.

    2014-01-01

    In horizontally transmitted mutualisms, mutualists disperse separately and reassemble in each generation with partners genetically unrelated to those in the previous generation. Because of this, there should be no selection on either partner to enhance the other's reproductive output directly. In symbiotic ant–plant mutualisms, myrmecophytic plants host defensive ant colonies, and ants defend the plants from herbivores. Plants and ants disperse separately, and, although ant defence can indirectly increase plant reproduction by reducing folivory, it is unclear whether ants can also directly increase plant reproduction by defending seeds. The neotropical tree Cordia alliodora hosts colonies of Azteca pittieri ants. The trees produce domatia where ants nest at stem nodes and also at the node between the peduncle and the rachides of the infloresence. Unlike the stem domatia, these reproductive domatia senesce after the tree fruits each year. In this study, I show that the tree's resident ant colony moves into these ephemeral reproductive domatia, where they tend honeydew-producing scale insects and patrol the nearby developing fruits. The presence of ants significantly reduced pre-dispersal seed predation by Amblycerus bruchid beetles, thereby directly increasing plant reproductive output. PMID:24807259

  12. Forelimb bone curvature in terrestrial and arboreal mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keith Henderson

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available It has recently been proposed that the caudal curvature (concave caudal side observed in the radioulna of terrestrial quadrupeds is an adaptation to the habitual action of the triceps muscle which causes cranial bending strains (compression on cranial side. The caudal curvature is proposed to be adaptive because longitudinal loading induces caudal bending strains (increased compression on the caudal side, and these opposing bending strains counteract each other leaving the radioulna less strained. If this is true for terrestrial quadrupeds, where triceps is required for habitual elbow extension, then we might expect that in arboreal species, where brachialis is habitually required to maintain elbow flexion, the radioulna should instead be cranially curved. This study measures sagittal curvature of the ulna in a range of terrestrial and arboreal primates and marsupials, and finds that their ulnae are curved in opposite directions in these two locomotor categories. This study also examines sagittal curvature in the humerus in the same species, and finds differences that can be attributed to similar adaptations: the bone is curved to counter the habitual muscle action required by the animal’s lifestyle, the difference being mainly in the distal part of the humerus, where arboreal animals tend have a cranial concavity, thought to be in response the carpal and digital muscles that pull cranially on the distal humerus.

  13. Venom toxicity and composition in three Pseudomyrmex ant species having different nesting modes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Labrière, Nicolas; Roux, Olivier; Petitclerc, Frédéric; Orivel, Jérôme; Escoubas, Pierre; Koh, Jennifer M S; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2014-09-01

    We aimed to determine whether the nesting habits of ants have influenced their venom toxicity and composition. We focused on the genus Pseudomyrmex (Pseudomyrmecinae) comprising terrestrial and arboreal species, and, among the latter, plant-ants that are obligate inhabitants of myrmecophytes (i.e., plants sheltering ants in hollow structures). Contrary to our hypothesis, the venom of the ground-dwelling species, Pseudomyrmex termitarius, was as efficacious in paralyzing prey as the venoms of the arboreal and the plant-ant species, Pseudomyrmex penetrator and Pseudomyrmex gracilis. The lethal potency of P. termitarius venom was equipotent with that of P. gracilis whereas the venom of P. penetrator was less potent. The MALDI-TOF MS analysis of each HPLC fraction of the venoms showed that P. termitarius venom is composed of 87 linear peptides, while both P. gracilis and P. penetrator venoms (23 and 26 peptides, respectively) possess peptides with disulfide bonds. Furthermore, P. penetrator venom contains three hetero- and homodimeric peptides consisting of two short peptidic chains linked together by two interchain disulfide bonds. The large number of peptides in P. termitarius venom is likely related to the large diversity of potential prey plus the antibacterial peptides required for nesting in the ground. Whereas predation involves only the prey and predator, P. penetrator venom has evolved in an environment where trees, defoliating insects, browsing mammals and ants live in equilibrium, likely explaining the diversity of the peptide structures. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Individual-based ant-plant networks: diurnal-nocturnal structure and species-area relationship.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wesley Dáttilo

    Full Text Available Despite the importance and increasing knowledge of ecological networks, sampling effort and intrapopulation variation has been widely overlooked. Using continuous daily sampling of ants visiting three plant species in the Brazilian Neotropical savanna, we evaluated for the first time the topological structure over 24 h and species-area relationships (based on the number of extrafloral nectaries available in individual-based ant-plant networks. We observed that diurnal and nocturnal ant-plant networks exhibited the same pattern of interactions: a nested and non-modular pattern and an average level of network specialization. Despite the high similarity in the ants' composition between the two collection periods, ant species found in the central core of highly interacting species totally changed between diurnal and nocturnal sampling for all plant species. In other words, this "night-turnover" suggests that the ecological dynamics of these ant-plant interactions can be temporally partitioned (day and night at a small spatial scale. Thus, it is possible that in some cases processes shaping mutualistic networks formed by protective ants and plants may be underestimated by diurnal sampling alone. Moreover, we did not observe any effect of the number of extrafloral nectaries on ant richness and their foraging on such plants in any of the studied ant-plant networks. We hypothesize that competitively superior ants could monopolize individual plants and allow the coexistence of only a few other ant species, however, other alternative hypotheses are also discussed. Thus, sampling period and species-area relationship produces basic information that increases our confidence in how individual-based ant-plant networks are structured, and the need to consider nocturnal records in ant-plant network sampling design so as to decrease inappropriate inferences.

  15. Ant- and Ant-Colony-Inspired ALife Visual Art.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenfield, Gary; Machado, Penousal

    2015-01-01

    Ant- and ant-colony-inspired ALife art is characterized by the artistic exploration of the emerging collective behavior of computational agents, developed using ants as a metaphor. We present a chronology that documents the emergence and history of such visual art, contextualize ant- and ant-colony-inspired art within generative art practices, and consider how it relates to other ALife art. We survey many of the algorithms that artists have used in this genre, address some of their aims, and explore the relationships between ant- and ant-colony-inspired art and research on ant and ant colony behavior.

  16. Are Isomeric Alkenes Used in Species Recognition among Neo-Tropical Stingless Bees (Melipona Spp).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Stephen J; Shemilt, Sue; da S Lima, Cândida B; de Carvalho, Carlos A L

    2017-12-01

    Our understanding of the role of cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) in recognition is based largely on temperate ant species and honey bees. The stingless bees remain relatively poorly studied, despite being the largest group of eusocial bees, comprising more than 400 species in some 60 genera. The Meliponini and Apini diverged between 80-130 Myr B.P. so the evolutionary trajectories that shaped the chemical communication systems in ants, honeybees and stingless bees may be very different. The aim of this study was to study if a unique species CHC signal existed in Neotropical stingless bees, as has been shown for many temperate species, and what compounds are involved. This was achieved by collecting CHC data from 24 colonies belonging to six species of Melipona from North-Eastern Brazil and comparing the results with previously published CHC studies on Melipona. We found that each of the eleven Melipona species studied so far each produced a unique species CHC signal based around their alkene isomer production. A remarkable number of alkene isomers, up to 25 in M. asilvai, indicated the diversification of alkene positional isomers among the stingless bees. The only other group to have really diversified in alkene isomer production are the primitively eusocial Bumblebees (Bombus spp), which are the sister group of the stingless bees. Furthermore, among the eleven Neotropical Melipona species we could detect no effect of the environment on the proportion of alkane production as has been suggested for some other species.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-10-07

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

  18. The arboreal component of a dry forest in Northeastern Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    Rodal,M. J. N.; Nascimento,L. M.

    2006-01-01

    The dry forests of northeastern Brazil are found near the coastal zone and on low, isolated mountains inland amid semi-arid vegetation. The floristic composition of these dry montane forests, as well as their relationship to humid forests (Atlantic forest sensu stricto) and to the deciduous thorn woodlands (Caatinga sensu stricto) of the Brazilian northeast are not yet well known. This paper sought to determine if the arboreal plants in a dry forest growing on a low mountain in the semi-arid ...

  19. Riding with the ants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, A. P. M.; Attili-Angelis, D.; Baron, N. C.; Groenewald, Johannes Z.; Crous, Pedro W.; Pagnocca, F. C.

    Isolates of Teratosphaeriaceae have frequently been found in the integument of attine ants, proving to be common and diverse in this microenvironment. The LSU phylogeny of the ant-isolated strains studied revealed that they cluster in two main lineages. The first was associated with the genus

  20. Braking system for use with an arbor of a microscope

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Norgren, D.U.

    1984-01-01

    A balanced braking system comprising a plurality of braking assemblies located about a member to be braked. Each of the braking assemblies consists of a spring biased piston of a first material fitted into a body of a different material which has a greater contraction upon cooling than the piston material. The piston is provided with a recessed head portion over which is positioned a diaphragm and forming a space therebetween to which is connected a pressurized fluid supply. The diaphragm is controlled by the fluid in the space to contact or withdraw from the member to be braked. A cooling device causes the body within which the piston is fitted to contract more than the piston, producing a tight shrink fit therebetween. The braking system is particularly applicable for selectively braking an arbor of an electron microscope which immobilizes, for example, a vertically adjustable low temperature specimen holder during observation. The system provides balanced braking forces which can be easily removed and re-established with minimal disturbance to arbor location

  1. Braking system for use with an arbor of a microscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norgren, Duane U.

    1984-01-01

    A balanced braking system comprising a plurality of braking assemblies located about a member to be braked. Each of the braking assemblies consists of a spring biased piston of a first material fitted into a body of a different material which has a greater contraction upon cooling than the piston material. The piston is provided with a recessed head portion over which is positioned a diaphragm and forming a space therebetween to which is connected a pressurized fluid supply. The diaphragm is controlled by the fluid in the space to contact or withdraw from the member to be braked. A cooling device causes the body within which the piston is fitted to contract more than the piston, producing a tight shrink fit therebetween. The braking system is particularly applicable for selectively braking an arbor of an electron microscope which immobilizes, for example, a vertically adjustable low temperature specimen holder during observation. The system provides balanced braking forces which can be easily removed and re-established with minimal disturbance to arbor location.

  2. Nutrient-dependent increased dendritic arborization of somatosensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Kaori; Furumizo, Yuki; Usui, Tadao; Hattori, Yukako; Uemura, Tadashi

    2017-01-01

    Suboptimal nutrition imposes developmental constraints on infant animals, which marshal adaptive responses to eventually become mature adults. Such responses are mounted at multiple levels from systemic to cellular. At the cellular level, the underlying mechanisms of cell proliferation control have been intensively studied. However, less is known about how growth of postmitotic and morphologically complex cells, such as neurons, is controlled by nutritional status. We address this question using Class I and Class IV dendritic arborization neurons in Drosophila larvae. Class IV neurons have been shown to sense nociceptive thermal, mechanical and light stimuli, whereas Class I neurons are proprioceptors. We reared larvae on diets with different protein and carbohydrate content throughout larval stages and examined how morphologies of Class I or Class IV neurons were affected. Dendritic arbors of Class IV neurons became more complex when larvae were reared on a low-yeast diet, which contains lower amounts of amino acids and other ingredients, compared to a high-yeast diet. In contrast, such low-yeast-dependent hyperarborization was not seen in Class I neurons. The physiological and metabolic implications of the hyperarborization phenotype are discussed in relation to a recent hypothesis that Class IV neurons sense protein-deficient stress and to our characterization of how the dietary yeast contents impacted larval metabolism. © 2016 Molecular Biology Society of Japan and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.

  3. Adolescent cocaine exposure simplifies orbitofrontal cortical dendritic arbors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren M DePoy

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Cocaine and amphetamine remodel dendritic spines within discrete cortico-limbic brain structures including the orbitofrontal cortex (oPFC. Whether dendrite structure is similarly affected, and whether pre-existing cellular characteristics influence behavioral vulnerabilities to drugs of abuse, remain unclear. Animal models provide an ideal venue to address these issues because neurobehavioral phenotypes can be defined both before, and following, drug exposure. We exposed mice to cocaine from postnatal days 31-35, corresponding to early adolescence, using a dosing protocol that causes impairments in an instrumental reversal task in adulthood. We then imaged and reconstructed excitatory neurons in deep-layer oPFC. Prior cocaine exposure shortened and simplified arbors, particularly in the basal region. Next, we imaged and reconstructed orbital neurons in a developmental-genetic model of cocaine vulnerability – the p190rhogap+/- mouse. p190RhoGAP is an actin cytoskeleton regulatory protein that stabilizes dendrites and dendritic spines, and p190rhogap+/- mice develop rapid and robust locomotor activation in response to cocaine. Despite this, oPFC dendritic arbors were intact in drug-naïve p190rhogap+/- mice. Together, these findings provide evidence that adolescent cocaine exposure has long-term effects on dendrite structure in the oPFC, and they suggest that cocaine-induced modifications in dendrite structure may contribute to the behavioral effects of cocaine more so than pre-existing structural abnormalities in this cell population.

  4. RAB-10-Dependent Membrane Transport Is Required for Dendrite Arborization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Wei; Yadav, Smita; DeVault, Laura; Jan, Yuh Nung; Sherwood, David R.

    2015-01-01

    Formation of elaborately branched dendrites is necessary for the proper input and connectivity of many sensory neurons. Previous studies have revealed that dendritic growth relies heavily on ER-to-Golgi transport, Golgi outposts and endocytic recycling. How new membrane and associated cargo is delivered from the secretory and endosomal compartments to sites of active dendritic growth, however, remains unknown. Using a candidate-based genetic screen in C. elegans, we have identified the small GTPase RAB-10 as a key regulator of membrane trafficking during dendrite morphogenesis. Loss of rab-10 severely reduced proximal dendritic arborization in the multi-dendritic PVD neuron. RAB-10 acts cell-autonomously in the PVD neuron and localizes to the Golgi and early endosomes. Loss of function mutations of the exocyst complex components exoc-8 and sec-8, which regulate tethering, docking and fusion of transport vesicles at the plasma membrane, also caused proximal dendritic arborization defects and led to the accumulation of intracellular RAB-10 vesicles. In rab-10 and exoc-8 mutants, the trans-membrane proteins DMA-1 and HPO-30, which promote PVD dendrite stabilization and branching, no longer localized strongly to the proximal dendritic membranes and instead were sequestered within intracellular vesicles. Together these results suggest a crucial role for the Rab10 GTPase and the exocyst complex in controlling membrane transport from the secretory and/or endosomal compartments that is required for dendritic growth. PMID:26394140

  5. Neotropical lowland forests along environmental gradients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Toledo, M.

    2010-01-01

    Neotropical lowlands feature an extraordinary display of vegetation types. This is especially the case for Bolivia where three biogeographical regions, Amazonian, Brazilian-Paranaense and Gran Chaco meet in the lowland areas, providing thus an ideal setting to study vegetation-environment

  6. Bacterial Infections across the Ants: Frequency and Prevalence of Wolbachia, Spiroplasma, and Asaia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Kautz

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial endosymbionts are common across insects, but we often lack a deeper knowledge of their prevalence across most organisms. Next-generation sequencing approaches can characterize bacterial diversity associated with a host and at the same time facilitate the fast and simultaneous screening of infectious bacteria. In this study, we used 16S rRNA tag encoded amplicon pyrosequencing to survey bacterial communities of 310 samples representing 221 individuals, 176 colonies and 95 species of ants. We found three distinct endosymbiont groups—Wolbachia (Alphaproteobacteria: Rickettsiales, Spiroplasma (Firmicutes: Entomoplasmatales, and relatives of Asaia (Alphaproteobacteria: Rhodospirillales—at different infection frequencies (at the ant species level: 22.1%, 28.4%, and 14.7%, resp. and relative abundances within bacterial communities (1.0%–99.9%. Spiroplasma was particularly enriched in the ant genus Polyrhachis, while Asaia relatives were most prevalent in arboreal ants of the genus Pseudomyrmex. While Wolbachia and Spiroplasma have been surveyed in ants before, Asaia, an acetic acid bacterium capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen, has received much less attention. Due to sporadic prevalence across all ant taxa investigated, we hypothesize facultative associations for all three bacterial genera. Infection patterns are discussed in relation to potential adaptation of specific bacteria in certain ant groups.

  7. Special issue: Comparative biogeography of Neotropical primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch Alfaro, Jessica W; Cortés-Ortiz, Liliana; Di Fiore, Anthony; Boubli, Jean P

    2015-01-01

    New research presented in this special issue of Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution on the "Phylogeny and Biogeography of Neotropical Primates" greatly improves our understanding of the evolutionary history of the New World monkeys and provides insights into the multiple platyrrhine radiations, diversifications, extinctions, and recolonizations that have taken place over time and over space in the Neotropics. Here, we synthesize genetic and biogeographic research from the past several years to construct an overarching hypothesis for platyrrhine evolution. We also highlight continuing controversies in Neotropical primate biogeography, such as whether the location of origin of platyrrhines was Africa or Asia; whether Patagonian fossil primates are stem or crown platyrrhines; and whether cis- and trans-Andean Neotropical primates were subject to vicariance through Andes mountain building, or instead diversified through isolation in mountain valleys after skirting around the Andes on the northwestern coast of South America. We also consider the role of the Amazon River and its major tributaries in shaping platyrrhine biodiversity, and how and when primates from the Amazon reached the Atlantic Forest. A key focus is on primate colonizations and extirpations in Central America, the Andes, and the seasonally dry tropical forests and savannas (such as the Llanos, Caatinga, and Cerrado habitats), all ecosystems that have been understudied up until now for primates. We suggest that most primates currently inhabiting drier open habitats are relatively recent arrivals, having expanded from rainforest habitats in the Pleistocene. We point to the Pitheciidae as the taxonomic group most in need of further phylogenetic and biogeographic research. Additionally, genomic studies on the Platyrrhini are deeply needed and are expected to bring new surprises and insights to the field of Neotropical primate biogeography. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Presence of the fire ant Solenopsis invicta (Westwood) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) stimulates burrowing behavior by larvae of the sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva) (Diptera: Psychodidae)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harvey, Jeffrey A. [Netherlands Institute of Ecology, Heteren (Netherlands). Dept. of Terrestrial Ecology; Hamilton, James G.C.; Ward, Richard D. [University of Keele, Staffordshire (United Kingdom). Centre for Applied Entomology and Parasitology. Dept. of Biological Sciences

    2010-01-15

    The sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva) vectors leishmaniasis in the neotropics. Although much is known about the biology of adult flies, little is known about interactions with its natural enemies. Here, we examined behavior of larvae of L4 L. longipalpis on a soil substrate when exposed to the fire ant Solenopsis invicata (Westwood). When ants were absent, most larvae tended to remain at or close to the soil surface, but when ants were present the larvae burrowed into the soil. Sandflies seek refuges in the presence of generalist predators, thus rendering them immune to attack from many potential enemies. (author)

  9. Presence of the fire ant Solenopsis invicta (Westwood) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) stimulates burrowing behavior by larvae of the sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva) (Diptera: Psychodidae)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harvey, Jeffrey A.; Hamilton, James G.C.; Ward, Richard D.

    2010-01-01

    The sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva) vectors leishmaniasis in the neotropics. Although much is known about the biology of adult flies, little is known about interactions with its natural enemies. Here, we examined behavior of larvae of L4 L. longipalpis on a soil substrate when exposed to the fire ant Solenopsis invicata (Westwood). When ants were absent, most larvae tended to remain at or close to the soil surface, but when ants were present the larvae burrowed into the soil. Sandflies seek refuges in the presence of generalist predators, thus rendering them immune to attack from many potential enemies. (author)

  10. Presence of the fire ant Solenopsis invicta (Westwood) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) stimulates burrowing behavior by larvae of the sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz & Neiva) (Diptera: Psychodidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, Jeffrey A; Hamilton, James G C; Ward, Richard D

    2010-01-01

    The sandfly Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz & Neiva) vectors leishmaniasis in the neotropics. Although much is known about the biology of adult flies, little is known about interactions with its natural enemies. Here, we examined behavior of larvae of L4 L.longipalpis on a soil substrate when exposed to the fire ant Solenopsis invicata (Westwood). When ants were absent, most larvae tended to remain at or close to the soil surface, but when ants were present the larvae burrowed into the soil. Sandflies seek refuges in the presence of generalist predators, thus rendering them immune to attack from many potential enemies.

  11. Community analysis of microbial sharing and specialization in a Costa Rican ant-plant-hemipteran symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G; Moreau, Corrie S

    2017-03-15

    Ants have long been renowned for their intimate mutualisms with trophobionts and plants and more recently appreciated for their widespread and diverse interactions with microbes. An open question in symbiosis research is the extent to which environmental influence, including the exchange of microbes between interacting macroorganisms, affects the composition and function of symbiotic microbial communities. Here we approached this question by investigating symbiosis within symbiosis. Ant-plant-hemipteran symbioses are hallmarks of tropical ecosystems that produce persistent close contact among the macroorganism partners, which then have substantial opportunity to exchange symbiotic microbes. We used metabarcoding and quantitative PCR to examine community structure of both bacteria and fungi in a Neotropical ant-plant-scale-insect symbiosis. Both phloem-feeding scale insects and honeydew-feeding ants make use of microbial symbionts to subsist on phloem-derived diets of suboptimal nutritional quality. Among the insects examined here, Cephalotes ants and pseudococcid scale insects had the most specialized bacterial symbionts, whereas Azteca ants appeared to consume or associate with more fungi than bacteria, and coccid scale insects were associated with unusually diverse bacterial communities. Despite these differences, we also identified apparent sharing of microbes among the macro-partners. How microbial exchanges affect the consumer-resource interactions that shape the evolution of ant-plant-hemipteran symbioses is an exciting question that awaits further research. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. Sick ants become unsociable

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bos, Nicky Peter Maria; Lefevre, T.; Jensen, A.B.

    2012-01-01

    Parasites represent a severe threat to social insects, which form high-density colonies of related individuals, and selection should favour host traits that reduce infection risk. Here, using a carpenter ant (Camponotus aethiops) and a generalist insect pathogenic fungus (Metarhizium brunneum), we...... show that infected ants radically change their behaviour over time to reduce the risk of colony infection. Infected individuals (i) performed less social interactions than their uninfected counterparts, (ii) did not interact with brood anymore and (iii) spent most of their time outside the nest from...... day 3 post-infection until death. Furthermore, infected ants displayed an increased aggressiveness towards non-nestmates. Finally, infected ants did not alter their cuticular chemical profile, suggesting that infected individuals do not signal their physiological status to nestmates. Our results...

  13. The life of a dead ant: the expression of an adaptive extended phenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Sandra B; Gerritsma, Sylvia; Yusah, Kalsum M; Mayntz, David; Hywel-Jones, Nigel L; Billen, Johan; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Hughes, David P

    2009-09-01

    Specialized parasites are expected to express complex adaptations to their hosts. Manipulation of host behavior is such an adaptation. We studied the fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, a locally specialized parasite of arboreal Camponotus leonardi ants. Ant-infecting Ophiocordyceps are known to make hosts bite onto vegetation before killing them. We show that this represents a fine-tuned fungal adaptation: an extended phenotype. Dead ants were found under leaves, attached by their mandibles, on the northern side of saplings approximately 25 cm above the soil, where temperature and humidity conditions were optimal for fungal growth. Experimental relocation confirmed that parasite fitness was lower outside this manipulative zone. Host resources were rapidly colonized and further secured by extensive internal structuring. Nutritional composition analysis indicated that such structuring allows the parasite to produce a large fruiting body for spore production. Our findings suggest that the osmotrophic lifestyle of fungi may have facilitated novel exploitation strategies.

  14. Trypanosoma cruzi infection in neotropical wild carnivores (Mammalia: Carnivora: at the top of the T. cruzi transmission chain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabiana Lopes Rocha

    Full Text Available Little is known on the role played by Neotropical wild carnivores in the Trypanosoma cruzi transmission cycles. We investigated T. cruzi infection in wild carnivores from three sites in Brazil through parasitological and serological tests. The seven carnivore species examined were infected by T. cruzi, but high parasitemias detectable by hemoculture were found only in two Procyonidae species. Genotyping by Mini-exon gene, PCR-RFLP (1f8/Akw21I and kDNA genomic targets revealed that the raccoon (Procyon cancrivorus harbored TcI and the coatis (Nasua nasua harbored TcI, TcII, TcIII-IV and Trypanosoma rangeli, in single and mixed infections, besides four T. cruzi isolates that displayed odd band patterns in the Mini-exon assay. These findings corroborate the coati can be a bioaccumulator of T. cruzi Discrete Typing Units (DTU and may act as a transmission hub, a connection point joining sylvatic transmission cycles within terrestrial and arboreal mammals and vectors. Also, the odd band patterns observed in coatis' isolates reinforce that T. cruzi diversity might be much higher than currently acknowledged. Additionally, we assembled our data with T. cruzi infection on Neotropical carnivores' literature records to provide a comprehensive analysis of the infection patterns among distinct carnivore species, especially considering their ecological traits and phylogeny. Altogether, fifteen Neotropical carnivore species were found naturally infected by T. cruzi. Species diet was associated with T. cruzi infection rates, supporting the hypothesis that predator-prey links are important mechanisms for T. cruzi maintenance and dispersion in the wild. Distinct T. cruzi infection patterns across carnivore species and study sites were notable. Musteloidea species consistently exhibit high parasitemias in different studies which indicate their high infectivity potential. Mesocarnivores that feed on both invertebrates and mammals, including the coati, a host that

  15. Does the afrotropical army ant Dorylus (Anomma) molestus go extinct in fragmented forests?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schöning, Caspar; Kinuthia, Wanja; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2006-01-01

    or facultatively associated with them. Field observations and mathematical modelling suggest that deforestation and accompanying forest fragmentation cause local extinctions of the neotropical swarm-raiding army ant Eciton burchellii which in turn have negative effects on its associated fauna. The aim......Swarm-raiding army ants are extremely polyphagous nomadic predators inhabiting tropical forests. They are considered keystone species because their raids can regulate the population dynamics of their prey and because a plethora of both invertebrate and vertebrate species are obligatorily...... of this study was to examine whether afrotropical army ants are affected by forest fragmentation in the same way. Surveys of Dorylus (Anomma) molestus colonies were carried out in forest fragments of different sizes and in the matrix habitat at two sites in Eastern Kenya, along the Lower Tana River...

  16. Coleopterous galls from the Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valéria Cid Maia

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Data on Neotropical coleopterous galls were compiled from the literature, which showed that 82 galls have so far been recorded among 77 plant species. The Fabaceae and Asteraceae plant families display the greatest richness in galls. Most galls are induced on stems or buds, while leaves constitute the second most attacked plant organ. Only 16 coleopteran gallers have been identified at the species level; most records are presented at the order level. The identified species belong to four families: Apionidae, Buprestidae, Curculionidae and Erirhinidae. The galls are found in Argentina, Brazil, Belize, Chile, Colombia (probably, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama and Venezuela. Eighteen species of Coleoptera are inquilines of galls and are associated with 18 plant species, most frequently with Asteraceae, Melastomataceae and Fabaceae. The inquilines were recorded mainly in leaf galls induced by Cecidomyiidae (Diptera. The identity of these weevils is poorly known. General data indicate a lack of taxonomic studies in the Neotropical region.

  17. Divergent chemical cues elicit seed collecting by ants in an obligate multi-species mutualism in lowland Amazonia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elsa Youngsteadt

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available In lowland Amazonian rainforests, specific ants collect seeds of several plant species and cultivate them in arboreal carton nests, forming species-specific symbioses called ant-gardens (AGs. In this obligate mutualism, ants depend on the plants for nest stability and the plants depend on ant nests for substrate and nutrients. AG ants and plants are abundant, dominant members of lowland Amazonian ecosystems, but the cues ants use to recognize the seeds are poorly understood. To address the chemical basis of the ant-seed interaction, we surveyed seed chemistry in nine AG species and eight non-AG congeners. We detected seven phenolic and terpenoid volatiles common to seeds of all or most of the AG species, but a blend of the shared compounds was not attractive to the AG ant Camponotus femoratus. We also analyzed seeds of three AG species (Anthurium gracile, Codonanthe uleana, and Peperomia macrostachya using behavior-guided fractionation. At least one chromatographic fraction of each seed extract elicited retrieval behavior in C. femoratus, but the active fractions of the three plant species differed in polarity and chemical composition, indicating that shared compounds alone did not explain seed-carrying behavior. We suggest that the various AG seed species must elicit seed-carrying with different chemical cues.

  18. Automated computation of arbor densities: a step toward identifying neuronal cell types

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uygar eSümbül

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The shape and position of a neuron convey information regarding its molecular and functional identity. The identification of cell types from structure, a classic method, relies on the time-consuming step of arbor tracing. However, as genetic tools and imaging methods make data-driven approaches to neuronal circuit analysis feasible, the need for automated processing increases. Here, we first establish that mouse retinal ganglion cell types can be as precise about distributing their arbor volumes across the inner plexiform layer as they are about distributing the skeletons of the arbors. Then, we describe an automated approach to computing the spatial distribution of the dendritic arbors, or arbor density, with respect to a global depth coordinate based on this observation. Our method involves three-dimensional reconstruction of neuronal arbors by a supervised machine learning algorithm, post-processing of the enhanced stacks to remove somata and isolate the neuron of interest, and registration of neurons to each other using automatically detected arbors of the starburst amacrine interneurons as fiducial markers. In principle, this method could be generalizable to other structures of the CNS, provided that they allow sparse labeling of the cells and contain a reliable axis of spatial reference.

  19. Twigs of Albizia niopoides (Spruce ex Benth. Burkart as a nesting resource for ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Otávio Guilherme Morais da Silva

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Ants can use twigs from fragments of tree branches as a nesting resource. The present study analyzed gatherings of ants in twigs of Albizia niopoides, a Fabaceae native to the Atlantic Forest that is used in landscaping in parks and squares in Brazil. Expeditions were performed in an urban park located in Atlantic Forest areas between February and June 2014. A total of 70 twigs with ants were collected and included 9357 workers, 2309 broods ants, 68 winged ants and 19 queens. Four subfamilies, 10 genera and 17 species/morphospecies were recorded. The species with the largest number of nests were Nylanderia sp.1, Hypoponera sp.4, and Wasmannia auropunctata. Ants of different species were found coexisting in the same twig, and Pheidole gr. tristis was the most common species found sharing a nest. Among the species recorded, only Pseudomyrmex gracilis and P. phyllophilus are arboreal; the others also live in litter. For some species, our results indicate that the twig occupation in the litter can be structured and not by chance. No correlation was found between the twig structure and the colony components.

  20. Toward reliable estimates of seed removal by small mammals and birds in the Neotropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AV. Christianini

    Full Text Available Birds are often considered seed predators of less importance when compared to rodents or granivorous ants in studies of seed predation using selective exclosures. However, it is possible that the role of granivorous birds interacting with seeds on the floor of Neotropical forests is being underestimated, if the selective exclosures designed to allow exclusive access to small rodents do not work properly in the Neotropics. We used an experimental approach to evaluate whether birds could remove seeds from selective exclosures designed to allow exclusive access to rodents. We compared seed removal from two paired treatments in the field: an open treatment (control allowing the access to all vertebrates, and a selective exclosure treatment, where seeds were placed under a cage staked to the ground and covered on top and on the laterals by wire mesh of varying sizes. Treatments were placed in the center of a sand quadrat in order to record the visit of vertebrates from their footprints. Although the selective exclosures are used to tell apart the small mammal seed removal from that of other animals, birds could persistently remove seeds from selective exclosures. Thus, the role of birds interacting with seeds on the floor of tropical forests may be underestimated for some plant species, due to an artifact of the exclosure method employed. Exclosures of 40 x 40 x 40 cm should be efficient to deter the removal of seeds by birds, allowing the consumption of the seeds by small mammals at the same time.

  1. Laccase detoxification mediates the nutritional alliance between leaf-cutting ants and fungus-garden symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Schiøtt, Morten; Rogowska-Wrzesinska, Adelina; Nygaard, Sanne; Roepstorff, Peter; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2013-01-08

    Leaf-cutting ants combine large-scale herbivory with fungus farming to sustain advanced societies. Their stratified colonies are major evolutionary achievements and serious agricultural pests, but the crucial adaptations that allowed this mutualism to become the prime herbivorous component of neotropical ecosystems has remained elusive. Here we show how coevolutionary adaptation of a specific enzyme in the fungal symbiont has helped leaf-cutting ants overcome plant defensive phenolic compounds. We identify nine putative laccase-coding genes in the fungal genome of Leucocoprinus gongylophorus cultivated by the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior. One of these laccases (LgLcc1) is highly expressed in the specialized hyphal tips (gongylidia) that the ants preferentially eat, and we confirm that these ingested laccase molecules pass through the ant guts and remain active when defecated on the leaf pulp that the ants add to their gardens. This accurate deposition ensures that laccase activity is highest where new leaf material enters the fungus garden, but where fungal mycelium is too sparse to produce extracellular enzymes in sufficient quantities to detoxify phenolic compounds. Phylogenetic analysis of LgLcc1 ortholog sequences from symbiotic and free-living fungi revealed significant positive selection in the ancestral lineage that gave rise to the gongylidia-producing symbionts of leaf-cutting ants and their non-leaf-cutting ant sister group. Our results are consistent with fungal preadaptation and subsequent modification of a particular laccase enzyme for the detoxification of secondary plant compounds during the transition to active herbivory in the ancestor of leaf-cutting ants between 8 and 12 Mya.

  2. Status and management of neotropical migratory birds: Introduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah M.; Peter W. Stangel

    1993-01-01

    The future for neotropical migratory birds rests with our commitment and ability to provide them adequate habitat during all periods of their life cycle. Our commitment to this cause is apparent in the groundswell of interest in neotropical migrants and the many proactive and coopemtive partnerships resulting from the Partners in Flight - Aves de las Americas...

  3. Effects of temperate agriculture on neotropical migrant landbirds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholas L. Rodenhouse; Louis B. Best; Raymond J. O' Connor; Eric K. Bollinger

    1993-01-01

    The ecology of Neotropical migrant landbirds in temperate farmland is reviewed to develop management recommendations for the conservation of migrants. Migrants constitute about 71% of bird species using farmland and 86% of bird species nesting there. The number and abundances of Neotropical migrants using farmland are greatest in uncultivated edges with trees and...

  4. THE MYRMICINE ANT GENUS ALLOMERUS MAYR (HYMENOPTERA: FORMICIDAE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FERNÁNDEZ FERNANDO

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available The Neotropical myrmicine ant genus Allomerus Mayr is revised. The genus isapparently monophyletic based on the antennal club confi guration. I recognize 8 species(4 described as new: Allomerus brevipilosus n. sp. (Brazil, A. decemarticulatusMayr (Brazil, French Guiana, A. dentatus n. sp. (Venezuela, A. maietae n. sp.(Brazil, A. octoarticulatus Mayr (=A. tuberculatus Forel n. syn. = A. octoarticulatusvar. demerarae W. M. Wheeler n. syn. = A. novemarticulatus Wheeler & Mann n.syn. [Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, French Guiana, Peru], A. septemarticulatus Mayrstatus rev. (Brazil, A. undecemarticulatus n. sp. (Venezuela and A. vogeli Kempf(Venezuela, Brazil. Better knowledge of the taxonomy of Allomerus is needed tounderstand the apparently sporadic differences in antennal fl agellomere number andspeciation processes that are probably linked to plant cavity colonization.

  5. ArborZ: PHOTOMETRIC REDSHIFTS USING BOOSTED DECISION TREES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gerdes, David W.; Sypniewski, Adam J.; McKay, Timothy A.; Hao, Jiangang; Weis, Matthew R.; Wechsler, Risa H.; Busha, Michael T.

    2010-01-01

    Precision photometric redshifts will be essential for extracting cosmological parameters from the next generation of wide-area imaging surveys. In this paper, we introduce a photometric redshift algorithm, ArborZ, based on the machine-learning technique of boosted decision trees. We study the algorithm using galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and from mock catalogs intended to simulate both the SDSS and the upcoming Dark Energy Survey. We show that it improves upon the performance of existing algorithms. Moreover, the method naturally leads to the reconstruction of a full probability density function (PDF) for the photometric redshift of each galaxy, not merely a single 'best estimate' and error, and also provides a photo-z quality figure of merit for each galaxy that can be used to reject outliers. We show that the stacked PDFs yield a more accurate reconstruction of the redshift distribution N(z). We discuss limitations of the current algorithm and ideas for future work.

  6. Arborealities: The Tactile Ecology of Hardy’s Woodlanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William A. Cohen

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This article asks what consequences two recent movements in scholarship - affect theory and environmental studies - might have for understanding the Victorian tactile imagination. Thomas Hardy's 1887 novel 'The Woodlanders' provides a means of addressing this question, for it shares with posthumanist critics a view that people are material things in a world of things, and that the world is itself a collection of vital agencies and networked actors. Hardy shows how a tactile modality provides a point of entry into discussions of both affect and ecology, situating the human in a proximate, contiguous relation to both bodily and environmental materialities. 'The Woodlanders' offers a world in which trees, in particular, work on - and are in turn worked on by - human objects; a world in which, one might say, the trees are people and the people are trees. This arboreality is far from a sentimental oneness with nature, nor is it an exercise in anthropomorphization. Instead, it provides a recognition of the inhuman, material, and sensate aspects of the human; or, perhaps better, of the human as rooted, budding, leafy, and abloom. Like some recent theoretical accounts, 'The Woodlanders' disperses agency among human and non-human elements alike, employing a tactile mode of representation to break down distinctions between them. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE

  7. The arboreal component of a dry forest in Northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. J. N. Rodal

    Full Text Available The dry forests of northeastern Brazil are found near the coastal zone and on low, isolated mountains inland amid semi-arid vegetation. The floristic composition of these dry montane forests, as well as their relationship to humid forests (Atlantic forest sensu stricto and to the deciduous thorn woodlands (Caatinga sensu stricto of the Brazilian northeast are not yet well known. This paper sought to determine if the arboreal plants in a dry forest growing on a low mountain in the semi-arid inland region (Serra Negra, 8° 35’ - 8° 38’ S and 38° 02’ - 38° 04’ W between the municipalities of Floresta and Inajá, state of Pernambuco have the same floristic composition and structure as that seen in other regional forests. In fifty 10 x 20 m plots all live and standing dead trees with trunk measuring > 5 cm diameter at breast height were measured. Floristic similarities between the forest studied and other regional forests were assessed using multivariate analysis. The results demonstrate that the dry forest studied can be classified into two groups that represent two major vegetational transitions: (1 a humid forest/dry forest transition; and (2 a deciduous thorn-woodland/ dry forest transition.

  8. The arboreal component of a dry forest in Northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodal, M J N; Nascimento, L M

    2006-05-01

    The dry forests of northeastern Brazil are found near the coastal zone and on low, isolated mountains inland amid semi-arid vegetation. The floristic composition of these dry montane forests, as well as their relationship to humid forests (Atlantic forest sensu stricto) and to the deciduous thorn woodlands (Caatinga sensu stricto) of the Brazilian northeast are not yet well known. This paper sought to determine if the arboreal plants in a dry forest growing on a low mountain in the semi-arid inland region (Serra Negra, 8 degrees 35 - 8 degrees 38 S and 38 degrees 02 - 38 degrees 04 W) between the municipalities of Floresta and Inajá, state of Pernambuco have the same floristic composition and structure as that seen in other regional forests. In fifty 10 x 20 m plots all live and standing dead trees with trunk measuring > 5 cm diameter at breast height were measured. Floristic similarities between the forest studied and other regional forests were assessed using multivariate analysis. The results demonstrate that the dry forest studied can be classified into two groups that represent two major vegetational transitions: (1) a humid forest/dry forest transition; and (2) a deciduous thorn-woodland/ dry forest transition.

  9. Spizaetus hawk-eagles as predators of arboreal colobines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fam, S D; Nijman, V

    2011-04-01

    The predation pressure put on primates by diurnal birds of prey differs greatly between continents. Africa and South America have specialist raptors (e.g. crowned hawk-eagle Stephanoaetus coronatus and harpy eagle Harpia harpyja) whereas in Asia the only such specialist's (Philippine eagle Pithecophaga jefferyi) distribution is largely allopatric with primates. The almost universal absence of polyspecific groups in Asia (common in Africa and South America) may indicate reduced predation pressure. As such there is almost no information on predation pressures on primates in Asia by raptors. Here we report successful predation of a juvenile banded langur Presbytis femoralis (~2 kg) by a changeable hawk-eagle Spizaetus cirrhatus. The troop that was attacked displayed no signs of being alarmed, and no calls were made before the event. We argue that in insular Southeast Asia, especially, large Spizaetus hawk-eagles (~2 kg) are significant predators of arboreal colobines. Using data on the relative size of sympatric Spizaetus hawk-eagles and colobines we make predictions on where geographically we can expect the highest predation pressure (Thai-Malay Peninsula) and which colobines are least (Nasalis larvatus, Trachypithecus auratus, P. thomasi) and most (P. femoralis, T. cristatus) affected.

  10. Xenopus laevis Retinal Ganglion Cell Dendritic Arbors Develop Independently of Visual Stimulation

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    Barbara Lom

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Newly formed neurons must locate their appropriate target cells and then form synaptic connections with these targets in order to establish a functional nervous system. In the vertebrate retina, retinal ganglion cell (RGC dendrites extend from the cell body and form synapses with nearby amacrine and bipolar cells. RGC axons, however, exit the retina and synapse with the dendrites of midbrain neurons in the optic tectum. We examined how visual stimulation influenced Xenopus RGC dendritic arborization. Neuronal activity is known to be an important factor in shaping dendritic and axonal arborization. Thus, we reared tadpoles in dark and light environments then used rhodamine dextran retrograde labeling to identify RGCs in the retina. When we compared RGC dendritic arbors from tadpoles reared in dark and light environments, we found no morphological differences, suggesting that physiological visual activity did not contribute to the morphological development of Xenopus RGC dendritic arbors.

  11. 78 FR 65380 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-31

    ... the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI. The human remains were removed from Alpena, Isabella, Grand... removed from the Devil River Mound site (20AL1) in Alpena County, MI. A resident of Ossineke, MI...

  12. Evaluation Of The Advanced Operating System Of The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority : AATA Web Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    During 1997, visitors to the Ann Arbor (Michigan) Transportation Authority's worldwide web site were invited to complete an electronic questionnaire about their experience with the site. Eighty surveys were collected, representing a non-scientific se...

  13. Commentary: Warring ants

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Biosciences; Volume 27; Issue 2. Commentary: Warring ants: Lessons from Lanchester's laws of combat? Renee M Borges. Volume 27 Issue 2 March 2002 pp 75-78. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/jbsc/027/02/0075-0078 ...

  14. Antílope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Anderson Martinho Moçambique

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Essa espécie de antílope só é encontrada em território angolano, sendo assim um símbolo nacional. Segundo a mitologia africana é símbolo de vivacidade, velocidade e beleza - Angola.

  15. Antílope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Anderson Martinho Moçambique

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Essa espécie de antílope só é encontrada em território angolano, sendo assim um símbolo nacional. Segundo a mitologia africana é símbolo de vivacidade, velocidade e beleza - Angola.

  16. Fire Ant Allergy

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... venom in a fire ant sting will kill bacteria and some of your skin cells. This results in the formation of a blister that fills with a cloudy white material in about 24 hours. While this looks like a pus-filled lesion that should be drained, ...

  17. "Ant-egg" cataract revisited

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Clemmensen, Kåre; Enghild, Jan J; Ivarsen, Anders

    2017-01-01

    -ray scans and electron microscopy. The purpose of this study was to further characterize "ant-egg" cataract using modern technology and display the history of the "ant-eggs" after cataract extraction. METHODS: "Ant-eggs" were examined using Heidelberg SPECTRALIS Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT...

  18. Ant Colony Optimization for Control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Ast, J.M.

    2010-01-01

    The very basis of this thesis is the collective behavior of ants in colonies. Ants are an excellent example of how rather simple behavior on a local level can lead to complex behavior on a global level that is beneficial for the individuals. The key in the self-organization of ants is communication

  19. An Assessment of Carbon Storage in China’s Arboreal Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weiwei Shao

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available In the years 2009–2013, China carried out its eighth national survey of forest resources. Based on the survey data, this paper used a biomass conversion function method to evaluate the carbon stores and carbon density of China’s arboreal forests. The results showed that: (1 By age group, the largest portion of carbon stores in China’s arboreal forests are in middle-aged forests. Over-mature forests have the least carbon storage; (2 By origin, natural forests of all age groups have higher carbon storage and carbon density than man-made forest plantations. The carbon density of natural forests and forest plantations increases gradually with the age of the trees; (3 By type (dominant tree species, the 18 most abundant types of arboreal forest in China account for approximately 94% of the nation’s total arboreal forest biomass and carbon storage. Among these, broadleaf mixed and Quercus spp. form the two largest portions. Taxus spp. forests, while comprising a very small portion of China’s forested area, have very high carbon density; (4 By region, the overall arboreal forest carbon storage is highest in the southwest part of China, and lowest in the northwest. However, because of differences in land use and forest coverage ratios, regions with arboreal forests of high carbon density are not necessarily the same regions that have high overall carbon storage; (5 By province, Heilongjiang, Yunnan, Tibet, Sichuan, Inner Mongolia, and Jilin have rather high carbon storage. The arboreal forests in Tibet, Jilin, Xinjiang, Sichuan, Yunnan, and Hainan have a rather high carbon density. This paper’s evaluation of carbon storage in China’s arboreal forests is a valuable reference for interpreting the role and function of Chinese ecosystems in coping with global climate change.

  20. The first cytogenetic data on Strumigenys louisianae Roger, 1863 (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Dacetini: the lowest chromosome number in the Hymenoptera of the neotropical region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Paula Alves-Silva

    Full Text Available In the present study, the first cytogenetic data was obtained for the ant species Strumigenys louisianae, from a genus possessing no previous cytogenetic data for the Neotropical region. The chromosome number observed was 2n = 4, all possessing metacentric morphology. Blocks rich in GC base pairs were observed in the interstitial region of the short arm of the largest chromosome pair, which may indicate that this region corresponds to the NORs. The referred species presented the lowest chromosome number observed for the subfamily Myrmicinae and for the Hymenoptera found in the Neotropical region. Observation of a low chromosome number karyotype has been described in Myrmecia croslandi, in which the occurrence of tandem fusions accounts for the most probable rearrangement for its formation. The accumulation of cytogenetic data may carry crucial information to ensure deeper understanding of the systematics of the tribe Dacetini.

  1. Recognition of endophytic Trichoderma species by leaf-cutting ants and their potential in a Trojan-horse management strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Silma L.; Evans, Harry C.; Jorge, Vanessa L.; Cardoso, Lucimar A. O.; Pereira, Fernanda S. T.; Rocha, Fabiano B.; Barreto, Robert W.; Hart, Adam G.

    2017-01-01

    Interactions between leaf-cutting ants, their fungal symbiont (Leucoagaricus) and the endophytic fungi within the vegetation they carry into their colonies are still poorly understood. If endophytes antagonistic to Leucoagaricus were found in plant material being carried by these ants, then this might indicate a potential mechanism for plants to defend themselves from leaf-cutter attack. In addition, it could offer possibilities for the management of these important Neotropical pests. Here, we show that, for Atta sexdens rubropilosa, there was a significantly greater incidence of Trichoderma species in the vegetation removed from the nests—and deposited around the entrances—than in that being transported into the nests. In a no-choice test, Trichoderma-infested rice was taken into the nest, with deleterious effects on both the fungal gardens and ant survival. The endophytic ability of selected strains of Trichoderma was also confirmed, following their inoculation and subsequent reisolation from seedlings of eucalyptus. These results indicate that endophytic fungi which pose a threat to ant fungal gardens through their antagonistic traits, such as Trichoderma, have the potential to act as bodyguards of their plant hosts and thus might be employed in a Trojan-horse strategy to mitigate the negative impact of leaf-cutting ants in both agriculture and silviculture in the Neotropics. We posit that the ants would detect and evict such ‘malign’ endophytes—artificially inoculated into vulnerable crops—during the quality-control process within the nest, and, moreover, that the foraging ants may then be deterred from further harvesting of ‘Trichoderma-enriched’ plants. PMID:28484603

  2. Out on a limb: Thermal microenvironments in the tropical forest canopy and their relevance to ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stark, Alyssa Y; Adams, Benjamin J; Fredley, Jennifer L; Yanoviak, Stephen P

    2017-10-01

    Small, cursorial ectotherms like ants often are immersed in the superheated air layers that develop millimeters above exposed, insolated surfaces (i.e., the thermal boundary layer). We quantified the thermal microenvironments around tree branches in the tropical rainforest canopy, and explored the effects of substrate color on the internal body temperature and species composition of arboreal ants. Branch temperatures during the day (09:00-16:00) were hottest (often > 50°C) and most variable on the upper surface, while the lowest and least variable temperatures occurred on the underside. Temperatures on black substrates declined with increasing distance above the surface in both the field and the laboratory. By contrast, a micro-scale temperature inversion occurred above white substrates. Wind events (ca. 2ms -1 ) eliminated these patterns. Internal temperatures of bodies of Cephalotes atratus workers experimentally heated in the laboratory were 6°C warmer on white vs. black substrates, and 6°C cooler than ambient in windy conditions. The composition of ant species foraging at baits differed between black-painted and unpainted tree branches, with a tendency for smaller ants to avoid the significantly hotter black surfaces. Collectively, these outcomes show that ants traversing canopy branches experience very heterogeneous thermal microenvironments that are partly influenced in predictable ways by branch surface coloration and breezy conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Geographic mosaic of plant evolution: extrafloral nectary variation mediated by ant and herbivore assemblages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anselmo Nogueira

    Full Text Available Herbivory is an ecological process that is known to generate different patterns of selection on defensive plant traits across populations. Studies on this topic could greatly benefit from the general framework of the Geographic Mosaic Theory of Coevolution (GMT. Here, we hypothesize that herbivory represents a strong pressure for extrafloral nectary (EFN bearing plants, with differences in herbivore and ant visitor assemblages leading to different evolutionary pressures among localities and ultimately to differences in EFN abundance and function. In this study, we investigate this hypothesis by analyzing 10 populations of Anemopaegma album (30 individuals per population distributed through ca. 600 km of Neotropical savanna and covering most of the geographic range of this plant species. A common garden experiment revealed a phenotypic differentiation in EFN abundance, in which field and experimental plants showed a similar pattern of EFN variation among populations. We also did not find significant correlations between EFN traits and ant abundance, herbivory and plant performance across localities. Instead, a more complex pattern of ant-EFN variation, a geographic mosaic, emerged throughout the geographical range of A. album. We modeled the functional relationship between EFNs and ant traits across ant species and extended this phenotypic interface to characterize local situations of phenotypic matching and mismatching at the population level. Two distinct types of phenotypic matching emerged throughout populations: (1 a population with smaller ants (Crematogaster crinosa matched with low abundance of EFNs; and (2 seven populations with bigger ants (Camponotus species matched with higher EFN abundances. Three matched populations showed the highest plant performance and narrower variance of EFN abundance, representing potential plant evolutionary hotspots. Cases of mismatched and matched populations with the lowest performance were associated

  4. Leucoagaricus gongylophorus produces diverse enzymes for the degradation of recalcitrant plant polymers in leaf-cutter ant fungus gardens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aylward, Frank O; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E; Tringe, Susannah G; Teiling, Clotilde; Tremmel, Daniel M; Moeller, Joseph A; Scott, Jarrod J; Barry, Kerrie W; Piehowski, Paul D; Nicora, Carrie D; Malfatti, Stephanie A; Monroe, Matthew E; Purvine, Samuel O; Goodwin, Lynne A; Smith, Richard D; Weinstock, George M; Gerardo, Nicole M; Suen, Garret; Lipton, Mary S; Currie, Cameron R

    2013-06-01

    Plants represent a large reservoir of organic carbon comprised primarily of recalcitrant polymers that most metazoans are unable to deconstruct. Many herbivores gain access to nutrients in this material indirectly by associating with microbial symbionts, and leaf-cutter ants are a paradigmatic example. These ants use fresh foliar biomass as manure to cultivate gardens composed primarily of Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, a basidiomycetous fungus that produces specialized hyphal swellings that serve as a food source for the host ant colony. Although leaf-cutter ants are conspicuous herbivores that contribute substantially to carbon turnover in Neotropical ecosystems, the process through which plant biomass is degraded in their fungus gardens is not well understood. Here we present the first draft genome of L. gongylophorus, and, using genomic and metaproteomic tools, we investigate its role in lignocellulose degradation in the gardens of both Atta cephalotes and Acromyrmex echinatior leaf-cutter ants. We show that L. gongylophorus produces a diversity of lignocellulases in ant gardens and is likely the primary driver of plant biomass degradation in these ecosystems. We also show that this fungus produces distinct sets of lignocellulases throughout the different stages of biomass degradation, including numerous cellulases and laccases that likely play an important role in lignocellulose degradation. Our study provides a detailed analysis of plant biomass degradation in leaf-cutter ant fungus gardens and insight into the enzymes underlying the symbiosis between these dominant herbivores and their obligate fungal cultivar.

  5. The fungus gardens of leaf-cutter ants undergo a distinct physiological transition during biomass degradation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huang, Eric L.; Aylward, Frank O.; Kim, Young-Mo; Webb-Robertson, Bobbie-Jo M.; Nicora, Carrie D.; Hu, Zeping; Metz, Thomas O.; Lipton, Mary S.; Smith, Richard D.; Currie, Cameron R.; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E.

    2014-08-01

    Leaf-cutter ants are dominant herbivores in ecosystems throughout the Neotropics. Rather than directly consuming the fresh foliar biomass they harvest, these ants use it to cultivate specialized fungus gardens. Although recent investigations have shed light on how plant biomass is degraded in fungus gardens, the cycling of nutrients that takes place in these specialized microbial ecosystems is still not well understood. Here, using metametabolomics and metaproteomics techniques, we examine the dynamics of nutrient turnover and biosynthesis in these gardens. Our results reveal that numerous free amino acids and sugars are depleted throughout the process of biomass degradation, indicating that easily accessible nutrients from plant material are readily consumed by microbes in these ecosystems. Accumulation of cellobiose and lignin derivatives near the end of the degradation process is consistent with previous findings of cellulases and laccases produced by Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, the fungus cultivated by leaf-cutter ants. Our results also suggest that ureides may be an important source of nitrogen in fungus gardens, especially during nitrogen-limiting conditions. No free arginine was detected in our metametabolomics experiments despite evidence that the host ants cannot produce this amino acid, suggesting that biosynthesis of this metabolite may be tightly regulated in the fungus garden. These results provide new insights into the dynamics of nutrient cycling that underlie this important ant-fungus symbiosis.

  6. [Geographic data for Neotropical bats (Chiroptera)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noguera-Urbano, Elkin A; Escalante, Tania

    2014-03-01

    The global effort to digitize biodiversity occurrence data from collections, museums and other institutions has stimulated the development of important tools to improve the knowledge and conservation of biodiversity. The Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) enables and opens access to biodiversity data of 321 million of records, from 379 host institutions. Neotropical bats are a highly diverse and specialized group, and the geographic information about them is increasing since few years ago, but there are a few reports about this topic. The aim of this study was to analyze the number of digital records in GBIF of Neotropical bats with distribution in 21 American countries, evaluating their nomenclatural and geographical consistence at scale of country. Moreover, we evaluated the gaps of information on 1 degrees latitude x 1 degrees longitude grids cells. There were over 1/2 million records, but 58% of them have no latitude and longitude data; and 52% full fit nomenclatural and geographic evaluation. We estimated that there are no records in 54% of the analyzed area; the principal gaps are in biodiversity hotspots like the Colombian and Brazilian Amazonia and Southern Venezuela. In conclusion, our study suggests that available data on GBIF have nomenclatural and geographic biases. GBIF data represent partially the bat species richness and the main gaps in information are in South America.

  7. Long-distance calls in Neotropical primates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliveira Dilmar A.G.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Long-distance calls are widespread among primates. Several studies concentrate on such calls in just one or in few species, while few studies have treated more general trends within the order. The common features that usually characterize these vocalizations are related to long-distance propagation of sounds. The proposed functions of primate long-distance calls can be divided into extragroup and intragroup ones. Extragroup functions relate to mate defense, mate attraction or resource defense, while intragroup functions involve group coordination or alarm. Among Neotropical primates, several species perform long-distance calls that seem more related to intragroup coordination, markedly in atelines. Callitrichids present long-distance calls that are employed both in intragroup coordination and intergroup contests or spacing. Examples of extragroup directed long-distance calls are the duets of titi monkeys and the roars and barks of howler monkeys. Considerable complexity and gradation exist in the long-distance call repertoires of some Neotropical primates, and female long-distance calls are probably more important in non-duetting species than usually thought. Future research must focus on larger trends in the evolution of primate long-distance calls, including the phylogeny of calling repertoires and the relationships between form and function in these signals.

  8. Toxoplasma gondii in small neotropical wild felids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Alberto Cañon-Franco

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available In the last decade, studies on wildlife worldwide have discovered key epidemiological aspects of the sylvatic cycle of Toxoplasma gondii. However, despite the known role of wild felines as definitive hosts in the transmission and maintenance of this parasite, few studies have focused on the involvement of these animals. Brazil exhibits the largest number of wild felid species in the Americas, all of which have a critical conservation status. However, serological detections, epidemiological studies and some molecular characterizations of T. gondii have primarily used Neotropical felid populations that are maintained in captivity, which does not reflect the disease behavior in free-living conditions. A systematic review of the worldwide scientific literature was conducted focusing on toxoplasmosis in small Neotropical felids. This review covered a number of aspects, including the state of scientific research, parasite transmission in the wild, the genetic characteristics of isolates, the relationship between these genetic characteristics and the pathogenicity of the parasite, and the risk factors linked to conflicts with humans. The present review shows the relevance of studying these felid populations based on their frequent interactions with humans in peri-urban areas and the need for further comprehensive studies to establish the real significance of T. gondii in public and animal health in tropical and temperate regions.

  9. Runtime analysis of the 1-ANT ant colony optimizer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Doerr, Benjamin; Neumann, Frank; Sudholt, Dirk

    2011-01-01

    The runtime analysis of randomized search heuristics is a growing field where, in the last two decades, many rigorous results have been obtained. First runtime analyses of ant colony optimization (ACO) have been conducted only recently. In these studies simple ACO algorithms such as the 1-ANT...... that give us a more detailed impression of the 1-ANT’s performance. Furthermore, the experiments also deal with the question whether using many ant solutions in one iteration can decrease the total runtime....

  10. The dynamics of ant mosaics in tropical rainforests characterized using the Self-Organizing Map algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Azémar, Frédéric; Céréghino, Régis; Leponce, Maurice; Corbara, Bruno; Orivel, Jérôme; Compin, Arthur

    2016-08-01

    Ants, the most abundant taxa among canopy-dwelling animals in tropical rainforests, are mostly represented by territorially dominant arboreal ants (TDAs) whose territories are distributed in a mosaic pattern (arboreal ant mosaics). Large TDA colonies regulate insect herbivores, with implications for forestry and agronomy. What generates these mosaics in vegetal formations, which are dynamic, still needs to be better understood. So, from empirical research based on 3 Cameroonian tree species (Lophira alata, Ochnaceae; Anthocleista vogelii, Gentianaceae; and Barteria fistulosa, Passifloraceae), we used the Self-Organizing Map (SOM, neural network) to illustrate the succession of TDAs as their host trees grow and age. The SOM separated the trees by species and by size for L. alata, which can reach 60 m in height and live several centuries. An ontogenic succession of TDAs from sapling to mature trees is shown, and some ecological traits are highlighted for certain TDAs. Also, because the SOM permits the analysis of data with many zeroes with no effect of outliers on the overall scatterplot distributions, we obtained ecological information on rare species. Finally, the SOM permitted us to show that functional groups cannot be selected at the genus level as congeneric species can have very different ecological niches, something particularly true for Crematogaster spp., which include a species specifically associated with B. fistulosa, nondominant species and TDAs. Therefore, the SOM permitted the complex relationships between TDAs and their growing host trees to be analyzed, while also providing new information on the ecological traits of the ant species involved. © 2015 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  11. Leaf anatomical traits of non-arboreal savanna species along a gradient of tree encroachment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiz Felipe Souza Pinheiro

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In the Brazilian savanna (Cerrado of Brazil, fire suppression has transformed typical savanna formations (TS into forested savanna (FS due to the phenomenon of encroachment. Under encroachment, non-arboreal plants begin to receive less light due to greater tree density and canopy closure. Here we aim to evaluate if leaf anatomical traits of non-arboreal species differ according to the degree of tree encroachment at the Assis Ecological Station - São Paulo, Brazil. To this end, we evaluated leaf tissue thickness and specific leaf area (SLA in representative non-arboreal species occurring along a gradient of tree encroachment. Leaves of TS species showed a trend towards xeromorphism, with traits reported to facilitate survival under high luminosity, such as thick leaves, thick epidermis and mesophyll, and low SLA. In contrast, FS species exhibited mesomorphic leaves, with thin mesophyll and high SLA, which are able to capture diffuse light in denser environments. Thus, non-arboreal understory species with mesomorphic leaf traits should be favored in environments with denser vegetation in contrast to typical savanna species. The results suggest that typical non-arboreal savanna species would not survive under tree encroachment due to the low competitiveness of their leaf anatomical strategies in shady environments.

  12. The metapleural gland of ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yek, Sze Huei; Mueller, Ulrich G

    2011-01-01

    The metapleural gland (MG) is a complex glandular structure unique to ants, suggesting a critical role in their origin and ecological success. We synthesize the current understanding of the adaptive function, morphology, evolutionary history, and chemical properties of the MG. Two functions......-compressible invagination of the integument and the secretion is thought to ooze out passively through the non-closable opening of the MG or is groomed off by the legs and applied to target surfaces. MG loss has occurred repeatedly among the ants, particularly in the subfamilies Formicinae and Myrmicinae, and the MG...... is more commonly absent in males than in workers. MG chemistry has been characterized mostly in derived ant lineages with unique biologies (e.g. leafcutter ants, fire ants), currently precluding any inferences about MG chemistry at the origin of the ants. A synthetic approach integrating functional...

  13. Hospitales seguros ante desastres

    OpenAIRE

    Celso Vladimir Bambaren Alatrista; María Del Socorro Alatrista Gutierrez

    2007-01-01

    Entre 1982 a 2005 se registraron daños en 1 143 establecimientos de salud en el Perú, generalmente debido a sismos, lluvias e inundaciones. Los daños en los servicios de salud producen la interrupción de la atención de la población y de los programas de salud, así como generan un gran gasto para la rehabilitación y reconstrucción. Por ello, se requiere proteger a los establecimientos de salud y desarrollar una política de hospitales seguros ante desastres que incluya medidas para prevenir o r...

  14. A morphologically specialized soldier caste improves colony defense in a neotropical eusocial bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grüter, Christoph; Menezes, Cristiano; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L; Ratnieks, Francis L W

    2012-01-24

    Division of labor among workers is common in insect societies and is thought to be important in their ecological success. In most species, division of labor is based on age (temporal castes), but workers in some ants and termites show morphological specialization for particular tasks (physical castes). Large-headed soldier ants and termites are well-known examples of this specialization. However, until now there has been no equivalent example of physical worker subcastes in social bees or wasps. Here we provide evidence for a physical soldier subcaste in a bee. In the neotropical stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula, nest defense is performed by two groups of guards, one hovering near the nest entrance and the other standing on the wax entrance tube. We show that both types of guards are 30% heavier than foragers and of different shape; foragers have relatively larger heads, whereas guards have larger legs. Low variation within each subcaste results in negligible size overlap between guards and foragers, further indicating that they are distinct physical castes. In addition, workers that remove garbage from the nest are of intermediate size, suggesting that they might represent another unrecognized caste. Guards or soldiers are reared in low but sufficient numbers (1-2% of emerging workers), considering that bee Lestrimelitta limao, an important natural enemy, larger workers were able to fight for longer before being defeated by the much larger robber. This discovery opens up opportunities for the comparative study of physical castes in social insects, including the question of why soldiers appear to be so much rarer in bees than in ants or termites.

  15. Limited gene dispersal and spatial genetic structure as stabilizing factors in an ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malé, P-J G; Leroy, C; Humblot, P; Dejean, A; Quilichini, A; Orivel, J

    2016-12-01

    Comparative studies of the population genetics of closely associated species are necessary to properly understand the evolution of these relationships because gene flow between populations affects the partners' evolutionary potential at the local scale. As a consequence (at least for antagonistic interactions), asymmetries in the strength of the genetic structures of the partner populations can result in one partner having a co-evolutionary advantage. Here, we assess the population genetic structure of partners engaged in a species-specific and obligatory mutualism: the Neotropical ant-plant, Hirtella physophora, and its ant associate, Allomerus decemarticulatus. Although the ant cannot complete its life cycle elsewhere than on H. physophora and the plant cannot live for long without the protection provided by A. decemarticulatus, these species also have antagonistic interactions: the ants have been shown to benefit from castrating their host plant and the plant is able to retaliate against too virulent ant colonies. We found similar short dispersal distances for both partners, resulting in the local transmission of the association and, thus, inbred populations in which too virulent castrating ants face the risk of local extinction due to the absence of H. physophora offspring. On the other hand, we show that the plant populations probably experienced greater gene flow than did the ant populations, thus enhancing the evolutionary potential of the plants. We conclude that such levels of spatial structure in the partners' populations can increase the stability of the mutualistic relationship. Indeed, the local transmission of the association enables partial alignments of the partners' interests, and population connectivity allows the plant retaliation mechanisms to be locally adapted to the castration behaviour of their symbionts. © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  16. Evidence for Widespread Associations between Neotropical Hymenopteran Insects and Actinobacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernal Matarrita-Carranza

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The evolutionary success of hymenopteran insects has been associated with complex physiological and behavioral defense mechanisms against pathogens and parasites. Among these strategies are symbiotic associations between Hymenoptera and antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria, which provide protection to insect hosts. Herein, we examine associations between culturable Actinobacteria and 29 species of tropical hymenopteran insects that span five families, including Apidae (bees, Vespidae (wasps, and Formicidae (ants. In total, 197 Actinobacteria isolates were obtained from 22 of the 29 different insect species sampled. Through 16S rRNA gene sequences of 161 isolates, we show that 91% of the symbionts correspond to members of the genus Streptomyces with less common isolates belonging to Pseudonocardia and Amycolatopsis. Electron microscopy revealed the presence of filamentous bacteria with Streptomyces morphology in brood chambers of two different species of the eusocial wasps. Four fungal strains in the family Ophiocordycipitacea (Hypocreales known to be specialized insect parasites were also isolated. Bioassay challenges between the Actinobacteria and their possible targeted pathogenic antagonist (both obtained from the same insect at the genus or species level provide evidence that different Actinobacteria isolates produced antifungal activity, supporting the hypothesis of a defensive association between the insects and these microbe species. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA and gyrB demonstrate the presence of five Streptomyces lineages associated with a broad range of insect species. Particularly our Clade I is of much interest as it is composed of one 16S rRNA phylotype repeatedly isolated from different insect groups in our sample. This phylotype corresponds to a previously described lineage of host-associated Streptomyces. These results suggest Streptomyces Clade I is a Hymenoptera host-associated lineage spanning several new insect

  17. Evidence for Widespread Associations between Neotropical Hymenopteran Insects and Actinobacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matarrita-Carranza, Bernal; Moreira-Soto, Rolando D.; Murillo-Cruz, Catalina; Mora, Marielos; Currie, Cameron R.; Pinto-Tomas, Adrián A.

    2017-01-01

    The evolutionary success of hymenopteran insects has been associated with complex physiological and behavioral defense mechanisms against pathogens and parasites. Among these strategies are symbiotic associations between Hymenoptera and antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria, which provide protection to insect hosts. Herein, we examine associations between culturable Actinobacteria and 29 species of tropical hymenopteran insects that span five families, including Apidae (bees), Vespidae (wasps), and Formicidae (ants). In total, 197 Actinobacteria isolates were obtained from 22 of the 29 different insect species sampled. Through 16S rRNA gene sequences of 161 isolates, we show that 91% of the symbionts correspond to members of the genus Streptomyces with less common isolates belonging to Pseudonocardia and Amycolatopsis. Electron microscopy revealed the presence of filamentous bacteria with Streptomyces morphology in brood chambers of two different species of the eusocial wasps. Four fungal strains in the family Ophiocordycipitacea (Hypocreales) known to be specialized insect parasites were also isolated. Bioassay challenges between the Actinobacteria and their possible targeted pathogenic antagonist (both obtained from the same insect at the genus or species level) provide evidence that different Actinobacteria isolates produced antifungal activity, supporting the hypothesis of a defensive association between the insects and these microbe species. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA and gyrB demonstrate the presence of five Streptomyces lineages associated with a broad range of insect species. Particularly our Clade I is of much interest as it is composed of one 16S rRNA phylotype repeatedly isolated from different insect groups in our sample. This phylotype corresponds to a previously described lineage of host-associated Streptomyces. These results suggest Streptomyces Clade I is a Hymenoptera host-associated lineage spanning several new insect taxa and

  18. Insecticidal defenses of Piperaceae from the neotropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernard, C B; Krishanmurty, H G; Chauret, D; Durst, T; Philogène, B J; Sánchez-Vindas, P; Hasbun, C; Poveda, L; San Román, L; Arnason, J T

    1995-06-01

    Insecticidal and growth-reducing properties of extracts of 14 species of American neotropical Piperaceae were investigated by inclusion in diets of a polyphagous lepidopteran, the European corn borer,Ostrinia nubilalis. Nutritional indices suggested most extracts acted by postdigestive toxicity.Piper aduncum, P. tuberculatum, andP. decurrens were among the most active species and were subjected to bioassay-guided isolation of the active components. Dillapiol was isolated from the active fraction ofP. aduncum, piperlonguminine was isolated fromP. tuberculatum, and a novel neolignan fromP. decurrens. The results support other studies on Asian and AfricanPiper species, which suggest that lignans and isobutyl amides are the active defence compounds in this family.

  19. Developing neurons use a putative pioneer's peripheral arbor to establish their terminal fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, W B; Macagno, E R

    1995-05-01

    Pioneer neurons are known to guide later developing neurons during the initial phases of axonal outgrowth. To determine whether they are also important in the formation of terminal fields by the follower cells, we studied the role of a putative leech pioneer neuron, the pressure-sensitive (PD) neuron, in the establishment of other neurons' peripheral arbors. The PD neuron has a major axon that exits from its segmental ganglion to grow along the dorsal-posterior (DP) nerve to the dorsal body wall, where it arborizes extensively mainly in its own segment. It also has two minor axons that project to the two adjacent segments but branch to a lesser degree. We found that the peripheral projections of several later developing neurons, including the AP motor neuron and the TD sensory neuron, followed, with great precision, the major axon and peripheral arbor of the consegmental PD neuron, up to its fourth-order branches. When a PD neuron was ablated before it had grown to the body wall, the AP and TD axons grew normally toward and reached the target area, but then formed terminal arbors that were greatly reduced in size and abnormal in morphology. Further, if the ablation of a PD neuron was accompanied by the induction, in the same segment, of greater outgrowth of the minor axon of a PD neuron from the adjacent segment, the arbors of the same AP neurons grew along these novel PD neuron branches. These results demonstrate that the peripheral arbor of a PD neuron is a both necessary and sufficient template for the formation of normal terminal fields by certain later growing follower neurons.

  20. La vivienda ante emergencias

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arq. María Eugenia Gonzàlez Chipont

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Este trabajo propone analizar la evolución de la vivienda como respuesta ante emergencias desde principios del siglo XX hasta nuestros días. La secuencia de casos a analizar no sigue una cronología estricta sino que se organiza en función de un creciente grado de complejidad. Comienza con los aportes fundamentales de la vivienda mínima del movimiento moderno, con un fuerte acento en lo tecnológico, para ir profundizando, mientras avanzamos en el siglo, en los aspectos sociales de la arquitectura. Sin intentar oponer lo tecnológico y lo social, la estructura propuesta expresa un enriquecimiento de la cuestión técnica conforme se van ampliando sus objetivos sociales. Mientras los requerimientos tecnológicos como la inmediatez y la masividad de la respuesta, permanecen a lo largo del tiempo, la vivienda ante emergencias puede plantearse objetivos sociales cada vez más profundos. Los casos fueron elegidos a partir de autores renombrados de la Historia de la Arquitectura partiendo de ejemplos cercanos a la génesis del movimiento moderno para acercarnos cada vez más hacia el contexto actual de Latinoamérica. Se logra así un barrido geográfco pero principalmente cultural: desde las fuentes de la modernidad, bajo el paradigma sólido de la industrialización, hasta la inestabilidad de la ciudad posindustrial latinoamericana

  1. Leucoagaricus gongylophorus Produces Diverse Enzymes for the Degradation of Recalcitrant Plant Polymers in Leaf-Cutter Ant Fungus Gardens

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aylward, Frank O. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Tringe, Susannah G. [Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst., Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Teiling, Clotilde [Roche Diagnostics, Indianapolis, IN (United States); Tremmel, Daniel [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Moeller, Joseph [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Scott, Jarrod J. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Barry, Kerrie W. [Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst., Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Piehowski, Paul D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Nicora, Carrie D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Malfatti, Stephanie [Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst., Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Monroe, Matthew E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Purvine, Samuel O. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Goodwin, Lynne A. [Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst., Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Smith, Richard D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Weinstock, George [Washington Univ. School of Medicine, St. Louis, MS (United States); Gerardo, Nicole [Emory Univ., Atlanta, GA (United States); Suen, Garret [Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst., Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Lipton, Mary S. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Currie, Cameron R. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Smothsonian Tropical Research Inst., Balboa (Panama)

    2013-06-12

    Plants represent a large reservoir of organic carbon comprised largely of recalcitrant polymers that most metazoans are unable to deconstruct. Many herbivores gain access to nutrients in this material indirectly by associating with microbial symbionts, and leaf-cutter ants are a paradigmatic example. These ants use fresh foliar biomass as manure to cultivate fungus gardens composed primarily of Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, a basidiomycetous symbiont that produces specialized hyphal swellings that serve as a food source for the host ant colony. Although leaf-cutter ants are conspicuous herbivores that contribute substantially to carbon turnover in Neotropical ecosystems, the process through which plant biomass is degraded in their fungus gardens is not well understood. Here we present the first draft genome of L. gongylophorus, and using genomic, metaproteomic, and phylogenetic tools we investigate its role in lignocellulose degradation in the fungus gardens of both Atta cephalotes and Acromyrmex echinatior leaf-cutter ants. We show that L. gongylophorus produces a diversity of lignocellulases in fungus gardens, and is likely the primary driver of plant biomass degradation in these ecosystems. We also show that this fungus produces distinct sets of lignocellulases throughout the different stages of biomass degradation, including numerous cellulases and laccases that may be playing an important but previously uncharacterized role in lignocellulose degradation. Our study provides a comprehensive analysis of plant biomass degradation in leaf-cutter ant fungus gardens and provides insight into the molecular dynamics underlying the symbiosis between these dominant herbivores and their obligate fungal cultivar.

  2. Pest repellent properties of ant pheromones

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2012-01-01

    of ant pheromones may be sufficient to repel pest insects from ant territories. The study of ant semiochemicals is in its infancy, yet, evidence for their potential use in pest management is starting to build up. Pheromones from four of five tested ant species have been shown to deter herbivorous insect...... prey and competing ant species are also deterred by ant deposits, whereas ant symbionts may be attracted to them. Based on these promising initial findings, it seems advisable to further elucidate the signaling properties of ant pheromones and to test and develop their use in future pest management....

  3. Hospitales seguros ante desastres

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celso Vladimir Bambaren Alatrista

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Entre 1982 a 2005 se registraron daños en 1 143 establecimientos de salud en el Perú, generalmente debido a sismos, lluvias e inundaciones. Los daños en los servicios de salud producen la interrupción de la atención de la población y de los programas de salud, así como generan un gran gasto para la rehabilitación y reconstrucción. Por ello, se requiere proteger a los establecimientos de salud y desarrollar una política de hospitales seguros ante desastres que incluya medidas para prevenir o reducción de la vulnerabilidad estructural, no estructural y funcional en los nuevos establecimientos y en los existentes.(Rev Med Hered 2007;18:149-154.

  4. Industrious leaf cutter ants and their carbon footprints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, A. C.; Dierick, D.; Trahan, N. A.; Allen, M. F.; Schwendenmann, L.; Harmon, T. C.; Oberbauer, S. F.; Fernandez Bou, A. S.; Zelikova, T. J.

    2017-12-01

    Leaf cutter ants (LCA) are considered ecosystem engineers in Neotropical forest ecosystems because they alter physical and environmental conditions for other organisms. LCA excavate large underground nests, maintaining intricate tunnels and fungal and waste chambers, and they continuously bring in vast amounts of fresh leaf material. In order to understand their ecosystem-wide impacts, we set out to determine whether their engineering activities fundamentally alter soil structure, soil nutrient pools, and gas fluxes in a wet tropical rainforest in Costa Rica. To directly compare LCA nest to non-nest sites, we utilized embedded sensor arrays with series of soil moisture, CO2, O2, and temperature sensors placed at four soil depths and automated minirhizotrons (AMR) to measure root and hyphal production and turnover. We also collected soils for biogeochemical analyses and measured soil CO2 fluxes and carbon isotope ratios of below-ground CO2 for two years. Our measurements confirmed that LCA alter their soil environment to regulate internal soil CO2 concentrations, moisture, and temperature, increasing O2 concentrations in the process. There were marked differences in soil structure inside nests relative to non-nests and these were associated with increased root and hyphal production and turnover in nests. Soil C, N, P, and their respective degrading enzymes were highly variable among sites and between nests and controls but N and P increased with soil depth and were generally higher in nests than controls. Contrary to our expectations, C mineralization rates were lower in nests but CO2 fluxes were high from nest vents and similar to non-nests elsewhere. At the system scale, LCA appear to fundamentally change the soil environment inside their nests and create spatial heterogeneity in biogeochemical processes and root and hyphal growth, influencing the overall C balance of Neotropical forests.

  5. Morphometric traits in arbor-acres broiler chicken ( Gallus gallus )fed ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Fifty sixth day morphometric and body weight measurements were taken on one hundred and forty eight Arbor Acres broiler chickens reared under the Deep Litter system in the guinea savana Zone of Nigeria. This study aimed to determine the effects of substituting treated and untreated Cocoa Bean Shell (CBS) at 50 and ...

  6. 76 FR 80392 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-23

    ...: University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology, Ann Arbor, MI AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION... Michigan officials and its Museum of Anthropology professional staff in consultation with representatives... accessioned into the Museum of Anthropology. Between 2007 and 2009 the remains were inventoried at the...

  7. 76 FR 73670 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-29

    ...: University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology, Ann Arbor, MI AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION... Museum of Anthropology NAGPRA collections staff in consultation with representatives of the Bay Mills... Anthropology purchased the human remains from Reverend L. P. Rowland in November of 1924 as part of a larger...

  8. Microglia show altered morphology and reduced arborization in human brain during aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Danielle S; Ma, Jolande; Jegathees, Thuvarahan; Goldsbury, Claire

    2017-11-01

    Changes in microglia function are involved in Alzheimer's disease (AD) for which ageing is the major risk factor. We evaluated microglial cell process morphologies and their gray matter coverage (arborized area) during ageing and in the presence and absence of AD pathology in autopsied human neocortex. Microglial cell processes were reduced in length, showed less branching and reduced arborized area with aging (case range 52-98 years). This occurred during normal ageing and without microglia dystrophy or changes in cell density. There was a larger reduction in process length and arborized area in AD compared to aged-matched control microglia. In AD cases, on average, 49%-64% of microglia had discontinuous and/or punctate Iba1 labeled processes instead of continuous Iba1 distribution. Up to 16% of aged-matched control microglia displayed discontinuous or punctate features. There was no change in the density of microglial cell bodies in gray matter during ageing or AD. This demonstrates that human microglia show progressive cell process retraction without cell loss during ageing. Additional changes in microglia occur with AD including Iba1 protein puncta and discontinuity. We suggest that reduced microglial arborized area may be an aging-related correlate of AD in humans. These variations in microglial cells during ageing and in AD could reflect changes in neural-glial interactions which are emerging as key to mechanisms involved in ageing and neurodegenerative disease. © 2016 International Society of Neuropathology.

  9. 78 FR 65382 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-31

    ....S.C. 3003, of the completion of an inventory of human remains under the control of the University of....R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The University of Michigan has completed an inventory of human...

  10. 78 FR 65369 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-31

    ....S.C. 3003, of the completion of an inventory of human remains under the control of the University of....R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The University of Michigan has completed an inventory of human...

  11. 78 FR 65366 - Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-31

    ....S.C. 3003, of the completion of an inventory of human remains under the control of the University of....R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The University of Michigan has completed an inventory of human...

  12. Dissolved nutrient exports from natural and human-impacted Neotropical catchments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gücker, Björn; Silva, Ricky C. S.; Graeber, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Aim Neotropical biomes are highly threatened by land-use changes, but the catchment-wide biogeochemical effects are poorly understood. Here, we aim to compare exports of dissolved nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from natural and human-impacted catchments in the Neotropics. Location Neotropics. Me...

  13. The role of fragmentation and landscape changes in the ecological release of common nest predators in the Neotropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael V. Cove

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Loss of large mammalian carnivores may allow smaller mesopredators to become abundant and threaten other community members. There is considerable debate about mesopredator release and the role that other potential factors such as landscape variables and human alterations to land cover lead to increased mesopredator abundance. We used camera traps to detect four mesopredators (tayra, Eira barbara; white-nosed coati, Nasua narica; northern raccoon, Procyon lotor; and common opossum, Didelphis opossum in a biological corridor in Costa Rica to estimate habitat covariates that influenced the species’ detection and occurrence. We selected these mesopredators because as semi-arboreal species they might be common nest predators, posing a serious threat to resident and migratory songbirds. Pineapple production had a pronounced positive effect on the detectability of tayras, while forest cover had a negative effect on the detection of coatis. This suggests that abundance might be elevated due to the availability of agricultural food resources and foraging activities are concentrated in forest fragments and pineapple edge habitats. Raccoon and opossum models exhibited little influence on detection from habitat covariates. Occurrence models did not suggest any significant factors influencing site use by nest predators, revealing that all four species are habitat generalists adapted to co-existing in human altered landscapes. Furthermore, fragmentation and land cover changes may predispose nesting birds, herpetofauna, and small mammals to heightened predation risk by mesopredators in the Neotropics.

  14. Effects of the Trophobiont Herbivore Calloconophora pugionata (Hemiptera on Ant Fauna Associated with Myrcia obovata (Myrtaceae in a Montane Tropical Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberth Fagundes

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Many studies have investigated the mechanisms behind the structure of arboreal ant assemblages. In this study, the objective was to evaluate the effect of availability of honeydew-producing colonies of Calloconophora pugionata (Membracidae on the structure of ant assemblages associated with the host plant Myrcia obovata (Myrtaceae in an Atlantic forest of Minas Gerais (Brazil. Our experiment consisted in a gradual exclusion of hemipteran colonies out of the host plant crown and further record of the ant assemblage response (species richness, composition, and occurrence to the presence and density of treehopper colonies. The hypothesis was that an increase in the number of trophobiont herbivores results in an increase in tending ant occurrence but a reduction in ant species diversity. Results corroborated our main hypothesis: membracids had a positive effect on the occurrence of ants but negative on species richness. Overall insect occurrence was also reduced with increasing in C. pugionata colonies, probably due to strengthening dominant ant species territory sizes and intensification of patrolling.

  15. Agra, arboreal beetles of Neotropical forests: pusilla group and piranha group systematics and notes on their ways of life (Coleoptera, Carabidae, Lebiini, Agrina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terry Erwin

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Revisions of two new species groups of the genus Agra Fabricius are presented with the following species described as new: pusilla group - Agra cruciaria sp. n. (Brazil, Agra grace sp. n. (Ecuador, Perú, Agra max sp. n. (Brazil, Agra minasianus sp. n. (Brazil, Agra notpusilla sp. n. (Brazil, Agra pseudopusilla sp. n. (Brazil; piranha group - Agra ce sp. n. (Perú, Agra risseri sp. n. (Bolivia, Brazil, Agra maia sp. n. (Bolivia, Agra piranha sp. n. (Ecuador; Agra tiputini sp. n. (Ecuador. Species of these two groups have adults that are the smallest in the entire genus, although this does not indicate they are closely related based on other attributes. All species are Amazonian in distribution.

  16. Biomass resilience of Neotropical secondary forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poorter, Lourens; Bongers, Frans; Aide, T Mitchell; Almeyda Zambrano, Angélica M; Balvanera, Patricia; Becknell, Justin M; Boukili, Vanessa; Brancalion, Pedro H S; Broadbent, Eben N; Chazdon, Robin L; Craven, Dylan; de Almeida-Cortez, Jarcilene S; Cabral, George A L; de Jong, Ben H J; Denslow, Julie S; Dent, Daisy H; DeWalt, Saara J; Dupuy, Juan M; Durán, Sandra M; Espírito-Santo, Mario M; Fandino, María C; César, Ricardo G; Hall, Jefferson S; Hernandez-Stefanoni, José Luis; Jakovac, Catarina C; Junqueira, André B; Kennard, Deborah; Letcher, Susan G; Licona, Juan-Carlos; Lohbeck, Madelon; Marín-Spiotta, Erika; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel; Massoca, Paulo; Meave, Jorge A; Mesquita, Rita; Mora, Francisco; Muñoz, Rodrigo; Muscarella, Robert; Nunes, Yule R F; Ochoa-Gaona, Susana; de Oliveira, Alexandre A; Orihuela-Belmonte, Edith; Peña-Claros, Marielos; Pérez-García, Eduardo A; Piotto, Daniel; Powers, Jennifer S; Rodríguez-Velázquez, Jorge; Romero-Pérez, I Eunice; Ruíz, Jorge; Saldarriaga, Juan G; Sanchez-Azofeifa, Arturo; Schwartz, Naomi B; Steininger, Marc K; Swenson, Nathan G; Toledo, Marisol; Uriarte, Maria; van Breugel, Michiel; van der Wal, Hans; Veloso, Maria D M; Vester, Hans F M; Vicentini, Alberto; Vieira, Ima C G; Bentos, Tony Vizcarra; Williamson, G Bruce; Rozendaal, Danaë M A

    2016-02-11

    Land-use change occurs nowhere more rapidly than in the tropics, where the imbalance between deforestation and forest regrowth has large consequences for the global carbon cycle. However, considerable uncertainty remains about the rate of biomass recovery in secondary forests, and how these rates are influenced by climate, landscape, and prior land use. Here we analyse aboveground biomass recovery during secondary succession in 45 forest sites and about 1,500 forest plots covering the major environmental gradients in the Neotropics. The studied secondary forests are highly productive and resilient. Aboveground biomass recovery after 20 years was on average 122 megagrams per hectare (Mg ha(-1)), corresponding to a net carbon uptake of 3.05 Mg C ha(-1) yr(-1), 11 times the uptake rate of old-growth forests. Aboveground biomass stocks took a median time of 66 years to recover to 90% of old-growth values. Aboveground biomass recovery after 20 years varied 11.3-fold (from 20 to 225 Mg ha(-1)) across sites, and this recovery increased with water availability (higher local rainfall and lower climatic water deficit). We present a biomass recovery map of Latin America, which illustrates geographical and climatic variation in carbon sequestration potential during forest regrowth. The map will support policies to minimize forest loss in areas where biomass resilience is naturally low (such as seasonally dry forest regions) and promote forest regeneration and restoration in humid tropical lowland areas with high biomass resilience.

  17. Phylogeny of Neotropical Cercosaura (Squamata: Gymnophthalmidae) lizards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Carvajal, Omar; Lobos, Simón E; Venegas, Pablo J

    2015-12-01

    Among Neotropical lizards, the geographically widespread gymnophthalmid Cercosaura as currently defined includes lowland and highland taxa from Panama to Argentina, with some species occurring in the northern Andes. In this study we analyze three mitochondrial (12S, 16S, ND4) and one nuclear (c-mos) gene using Bayesian methods to clarify the phylogenetic relationships among most species of Cercosaura based on a well-supported phylogenetic hypothesis that also includes a large sample of other taxa within Cercosaurini. The phylogenetic tree obtained in this paper shows that Cercosaura as currently defined is not monophyletic. Two species from the northern Andes (C. dicra and C. vertebralis) are nested within Pholidobolus, which has been formerly recognized as a major radiation along the Andes of Ecuador and Colombia. Therefore, Cercosaura has probably not diversified in the northern Andes, although the phylogenetic position of C. hypnoides from the Andes of Colombia remains unknown. Tree topology and genetic distances support both recognition of C. ocellata bassleri as a distinct species, C. bassleri, and recognition of C. argula and C. oshaughnessyi as two different species. In the interest of promoting clarity and precision regarding the names of clades of gymnophthalmid lizards, we propose a phylogenetic definition of Cercosaura. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. A cellular automata model for ant trails

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this study, the unidirectional ant traffic flow with U-turn in an ant trail was inves- tigated using ... the literature, it was considered in the model that (i) ant colony consists of two kinds of ants, good- ... ponents without a central controller [8].

  19. ANT, tourism and situated globality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jóhannesson, Gunnar Thór; Ren, Carina Bregnholm; van der Duim, René

    2015-01-01

    viable descriptions of the collective condition of humans and more-than-humans in the Anthropocene. Also and moving past a merely descriptive approach, it discusses it as a useful tool to engage with the situated globalities which come into being through the socio-spatial coupling of tourism......In recent years Actor-network theory (ANT) has increasingly been felt in the field of tourism studies (Van der Duim, Ren, & Jóhannesson, 2012). An important implication of the meeting between ANT and tourism studies is the notion of tourism being described as a heterogeneous assemblage of what we...... are used to define as the separate spheres of nature and culture. This paper explores and relates the central tenets of ANT in tourism with regard to the concept of the Anthropocene. It presents the ANT approach as a flat and object-oriented ontology and methodology and explores its potentials to carve out...

  20. Ants Orase kultuurisõnum

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    2007-01-01

    26. jaanuaril toimub Tallinna Ülikooli Akadeemilises Raamatukogus seminar silmapaistvast Eesti teadlasest ja tõlkijast Ants Orasest. Esinevad kirjandusteadlased Tallinna Ülikoolist, Tartu Ülikoolist ja Eesti Kirjandusmuuseumist. Avaettekandeks on sõna Oklahoma Ülikooli professoril Vincent B. Leitchil, kes oli Ants Orase viimaseks juhendatavaks doktorandiks. Seminari korraldavad Tallinna Ülikool ja Eesti Kirjandusmuuseum. Vt ka Postimees, 26, jaan., lk. 18

  1. A revision of Spondias L. (Anacardiaceae in the Neotropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John D. Mitchell

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available As part of an ongoing study of Anacardiaceae subfamily Spondioideae, the ten native and one introduced species of Spondias in the Neotropics are revised. The genus is circumscribed. Three new species, S. admirabilis, S. expeditionaria, and S. globosa, are described and illustrated; a key to the taxa found in the Neotropics and distribution maps are provided. The Paleotropical species and allied genera are reviewed. Diagnostic character sets include leaf architecture, habit, flower morphology, and gross fruit morphology. Notes on the ecology and economic botany of the species are provided.

  2. Revision of the Neotropical Xanthandrus Verral (Diptera, Syrphidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Borges Zuleica M.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available The Neotropical genus Xanthandrus Verral, 1901 is revised. Six species are redescribed: X. bucephalus (Wiedemann, 1830, X. cubanus Fluke, 1936, X. mellinoides (Macquart, 1846, X. mexicanus Curran, 1930, X. nitidulus Fluke, 1937, and X. plaumanni Fluke, 1937. Three species are included based on original descriptions: X. flavomaculatus Shannon, 1927, X. palliatus (Fluke, 1945, and X. simplex (Loew, 1861. New synonyms proposed: Argentinomyia longicornis (Walker, 1837 = Xanthandrus biguttatus Hull, 1945 syn. nov., and Xanthandrus bucephalus (Wiedemann, 1830 = Melanostoma quadrinotata Bigot, 1884 syn. nov. Description of terminalia, a key for Neotropical species, and illustrations are also presented.

  3. Using Ants as bioindicators: Multiscale Issues in Ant Community Ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Andersen

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available Ecological patterns and processes are characteristically scale dependent, and research findings often cannot be translated easily from one scale to another. Conservation biology is challenged by a lack of congruence between the spatial scales of ecological research (typically involving small plots and land management (typically involving whole landscapes. Here, I discuss spatial scaling issues as they relate to an understanding of ant communities and, consequently, their use as bioindicators in land management. Our perceptions of fundamental patterns and processes in ant communities depend on scale: taxa that are behaviorally dominant at one scale are not necessarily so at others, functional groups recognized at one scale are often inappropriate for others, and the role of competition in community structure depends on the scale of analysis. Patterns of species richness and composition, and the ability of total richness to be estimated by surrogates, are all also scale dependent. Ant community ecology has a tradition of detailed studies in small plots, but the use of ants as bioindicators requires a predictive understanding of community structure and dynamics at a range of spatial scales. Such an appreciation of ant communities and their most effective use as bioindicators is best served by studies integrating results from plot-scale research with the broad-scale paradigms of biogeography, systematics, and evolutionary biology.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  5. Vocal ontogeny in neotropical singing mice (Scotinomys.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Polly Campbell

    Full Text Available Isolation calls produced by dependent young are a fundamental form of communication. For species in which vocal signals remain important to adult communication, the function and social context of vocal behavior changes dramatically with the onset of sexual maturity. The ontogenetic relationship between these distinct forms of acoustic communication is surprisingly under-studied. We conducted a detailed analysis of vocal development in sister species of Neotropical singing mice, Scotinomys teguina and S. xerampelinus. Adult singing mice are remarkable for their advertisement songs, rapidly articulated trills used in long-distance communication; the vocal behavior of pups was previously undescribed. We recorded 30 S. teguina and 15 S. xerampelinus pups daily, from birth to weaning; 23 S. teguina and 11 S. xerampelinus were recorded until sexual maturity. Like other rodent species with poikilothermic young, singing mice were highly vocal during the first weeks of life and stopped vocalizing before weaning. Production of first advertisement songs coincided with the onset of sexual maturity after a silent period of ≧2 weeks. Species differences in vocal behavior emerged early in ontogeny and notes that comprise adult song were produced from birth. However, the organization and relative abundance of distinct note types was very different between pups and adults. Notably, the structure, note repetition rate, and intra-individual repeatability of pup vocalizations did not become more adult-like with age; the highly stereotyped structure of adult song appeared de novo in the first songs of young adults. We conclude that, while the basic elements of adult song are available from birth, distinct selection pressures during maternal dependency, dispersal, and territorial establishment favor major shifts in the structure and prevalence of acoustic signals. This study provides insight into how an evolutionarily conserved form of acoustic signaling provides

  6. Countryside biogeography of Neotropical reptiles and amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendenhall, Chase D; Frishkoff, Luke O; Santos-Barrera, Georgina; Pacheco, Jesús; Mesfun, Eyobed; Mendoza Quijano, Fernando; Ehrlich, Paul R; Ceballos, Gerardo; Daily, Gretchen C; Pringle, Robert M

    2014-04-01

    The future of biodiversity and ecosystem services depends largely on the capacity of human-dominated ecosystems to support them, yet this capacity remains largely unknown. Using the framework of countryside biogeography, and working in the Las Cruces system of Coto Brus, Costa Rica, we assessed reptile and amphibian assemblages within four habitats that typify much of the Neotropics: sun coffee plantations (12 sites), pasture (12 sites), remnant forest elements (12 sites), and a larger, contiguous protected forest (3 sites in one forest). Through analysis of 1678 captures of 67 species, we draw four primary conclusions. First, we found that the majority of reptile (60%) and amphibian (70%) species in this study used an array of habitat types, including coffee plantations and actively grazed pastures. Second, we found that coffee plantations and pastures hosted rich, albeit different and less dense, reptile and amphibian biodiversity relative to the 326-ha Las Cruces Forest Reserve and neighboring forest elements. Third, we found that the small ribbons of "countryside forest elements" weaving through farmland collectively increased the effective size of a 326-ha local forest reserve 16-fold for reptiles and 14-fold for amphibians within our 236-km2 study area. Therefore, countryside forest elements, often too small for most remote sensing techniques to identify, are contributing -95% of the available habitat for forest-dependent reptiles and amphibians in our largely human-dominated study region. Fourth, we found large and pond-reproducing amphibians to prefer human-made habitats, whereas small, stream-reproducing, and directly developing species are more dependent on forest elements. Our investigation demonstrates that tropical farming landscapes can support substantial reptile and amphibian biodiversity. Our approach provides a framework for estimating the conservation value of the complex working landscapes that constitute roughly half of the global land surface

  7. Monoculture of leafcutter ant gardens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich G Mueller

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Leafcutter ants depend on the cultivation of symbiotic Attamyces fungi for food, which are thought to be grown by the ants in single-strain, clonal monoculture throughout the hundreds to thousands of gardens within a leafcutter nest. Monoculture eliminates cultivar-cultivar competition that would select for competitive fungal traits that are detrimental to the ants, whereas polyculture of several fungi could increase nutritional diversity and disease resistance of genetically variable gardens.Using three experimental approaches, we assessed cultivar diversity within nests of Atta leafcutter ants, which are most likely among all fungus-growing ants to cultivate distinct cultivar genotypes per nest because of the nests' enormous sizes (up to 5000 gardens and extended lifespans (10-20 years. In Atta texana and in A. cephalotes, we resampled nests over a 5-year period to test for persistence of resident cultivar genotypes within each nest, and we tested for genetic differences between fungi from different nest sectors accessed through excavation. In A. texana, we also determined the number of Attamyces cells carried as a starter inoculum by a dispersing queens (minimally several thousand Attamyces cells, and we tested for genetic differences between Attamyces carried by sister queens dispersing from the same nest. Except for mutational variation arising during clonal Attamyces propagation, DNA fingerprinting revealed no evidence for fungal polyculture and no genotype turnover during the 5-year surveys.Atta leafcutter ants can achieve stable, fungal monoculture over many years. Mutational variation emerging within an Attamyces monoculture could provide genetic diversity for symbiont choice (gardening biases of the ants favoring specific mutational variants, an analog of artificial selection.

  8. Tail function during arboreal quadrupedalism in squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis) and tamarins (Saguinus oedipus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Jesse W; Russo, Gabrielle A; Fellmann, Connie D; Thatikunta, Meena A; Chadwell, Brad A

    2015-10-01

    The need to maintain stability on narrow branches is often presented as a major selective force shaping primate morphology, with adaptations to facilitate grasping receiving particular attention. The functional importance of a long and mobile tail for maintaining arboreal stability has been comparatively understudied. Tails can facilitate arboreal balance by acting as either static counterbalances or dynamic inertial appendages able to modulate whole-body angular momentum. We investigate associations between tail use and inferred grasping ability in two closely related cebid platyrrhines-cotton-top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus) and black-capped squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis). Using high-speed videography of captive monkeys moving on 3.2 cm diameter poles, we specifically test the hypothesis that squirrel monkeys (characterized by grasping extremities with long digits) will be less dependent on the tail for balance than tamarins (characterized by claw-like nails, short digits, and a reduced hallux). Tamarins have relatively longer tails than squirrel monkeys, move their tails through greater angular amplitudes, at higher angular velocities, and with greater angular accelerations, suggesting dynamic use of tail to regulate whole-body angular momentum. By contrast, squirrel monkeys generally hold their tails in a comparatively stationary posture and at more depressed angles, suggesting a static counterbalancing mechanism. This study, the first empirical test of functional tradeoffs between grasping ability and tail use in arboreal primates, suggests a critical role for the tail in maintaining stability during arboreal quadrupedalism. Our findings have the potential to inform our functional understanding of tail loss during primate evolution. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Thuja occidentalis (Arbor vitae): A Review of its Pharmaceutical, Pharmacological and Clinical Properties

    OpenAIRE

    Naser, Belal; Bodinet, Cornelia; Tegtmeier, Martin; Lindequist, Ulrike

    2005-01-01

    Arbor vitae (Thuja occidentalis L.) is a native European tree widely used in homeopathy and evidence-based phytotherapy. Many reviews and monographs have been published on the herbal substance's description, mode of action and clinical use. However, no comprehensive evidence-based review is available. Therefore, our aim was to search MEDLINE databases and survey manufacturers for further details or unpublished data. This review presents the botany, ethnobotany and phytochemistry, especial...

  10. Pest repelling properties of ant pheromones

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2014-01-01

    Ants control pests via predation and physical deterrence; however, ant communication is based on chemical cues which may serve as warning signals to potential prey and other intruders. The presence of ant pheromones may, thus, be sufficient to repel pests from ant territories. This mini-review sh......-review shows that four out of five tested ant species deposit pheromones that repel herbivorous prey from their host plants.......Ants control pests via predation and physical deterrence; however, ant communication is based on chemical cues which may serve as warning signals to potential prey and other intruders. The presence of ant pheromones may, thus, be sufficient to repel pests from ant territories. This mini...

  11. How ants drop out: ant abundance on tropical mountains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longino, John T; Branstetter, Michael G; Colwell, Robert K

    2014-01-01

    In tropical wet forests, ants are a large proportion of the animal biomass, but the factors determining abundance are not well understood. We characterized ant abundance in the litter layer of 41 mature wet forest sites spread throughout Central America (Chiapas, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica) and examined the impact of elevation (as a proxy for temperature) and community species richness. Sites were intentionally chosen to minimize variation in precipitation and seasonality. From sea level to 1500 m ant abundance very gradually declined, community richness declined more rapidly than abundance, and the local frequency of the locally most common species increased. These results suggest that within this elevational zone, density compensation is acting, maintaining high ant abundance as richness declines. In contrast, in sites above 1500 m, ant abundance dropped abruptly to much lower levels. Among these high montane sites, community richness explained much more of the variation in abundance than elevation, and there was no evidence of density compensation. The relative stability of abundance below 1500 m may be caused by opposing effects of temperature on productivity and metabolism. Lower temperatures may decrease productivity and thus the amount of food available for consumers, but slower metabolisms of consumers may allow maintenance of higher biomass at lower resource supply rates. Ant communities at these lower elevations may be highly interactive, the result of continuous habitat presence over geological time. High montane sites may be ephemeral in geological time, resulting in non-interactive communities dominated by historical and stochastic processes. Abundance in these sites may be determined by the number of species that manage to colonize and/or avoid extinction on mountaintops.

  12. How ants drop out: ant abundance on tropical mountains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John T Longino

    Full Text Available In tropical wet forests, ants are a large proportion of the animal biomass, but the factors determining abundance are not well understood. We characterized ant abundance in the litter layer of 41 mature wet forest sites spread throughout Central America (Chiapas, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica and examined the impact of elevation (as a proxy for temperature and community species richness. Sites were intentionally chosen to minimize variation in precipitation and seasonality. From sea level to 1500 m ant abundance very gradually declined, community richness declined more rapidly than abundance, and the local frequency of the locally most common species increased. These results suggest that within this elevational zone, density compensation is acting, maintaining high ant abundance as richness declines. In contrast, in sites above 1500 m, ant abundance dropped abruptly to much lower levels. Among these high montane sites, community richness explained much more of the variation in abundance than elevation, and there was no evidence of density compensation. The relative stability of abundance below 1500 m may be caused by opposing effects of temperature on productivity and metabolism. Lower temperatures may decrease productivity and thus the amount of food available for consumers, but slower metabolisms of consumers may allow maintenance of higher biomass at lower resource supply rates. Ant communities at these lower elevations may be highly interactive, the result of continuous habitat presence over geological time. High montane sites may be ephemeral in geological time, resulting in non-interactive communities dominated by historical and stochastic processes. Abundance in these sites may be determined by the number of species that manage to colonize and/or avoid extinction on mountaintops.

  13. Tree-hugging koalas demonstrate a novel thermoregulatory mechanism for arboreal mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briscoe, Natalie J; Handasyde, Kathrine A; Griffiths, Stephen R; Porter, Warren P; Krockenberger, Andrew; Kearney, Michael R

    2014-06-01

    How climate impacts organisms depends not only on their physiology, but also whether they can buffer themselves against climate variability via their behaviour. One of the way species can withstand hot temperatures is by seeking out cool microclimates, but only if their habitat provides such refugia. Here, we describe a novel thermoregulatory strategy in an arboreal mammal, the koala Phascolarctos cinereus. During hot weather, koalas enhanced conductive heat loss by seeking out and resting against tree trunks that were substantially cooler than ambient air temperature. Using a biophysical model of heat exchange, we show that this behaviour greatly reduces the amount of heat that must be lost via evaporative cooling, potentially increasing koala survival during extreme heat events. While it has long been known that internal temperatures of trees differ from ambient air temperatures, the relevance of this for arboreal and semi-arboreal mammals has not previously been explored. Our results highlight the important role of tree trunks as aboveground 'heat sinks', providing cool local microenvironments not only for koalas, but also for all tree-dwelling species. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  14. Tree-hugging koalas demonstrate a novel thermoregulatory mechanism for arboreal mammals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briscoe, Natalie J.; Handasyde, Kathrine A.; Griffiths, Stephen R.; Porter, Warren P.; Krockenberger, Andrew; Kearney, Michael R.

    2014-01-01

    How climate impacts organisms depends not only on their physiology, but also whether they can buffer themselves against climate variability via their behaviour. One of the way species can withstand hot temperatures is by seeking out cool microclimates, but only if their habitat provides such refugia. Here, we describe a novel thermoregulatory strategy in an arboreal mammal, the koala Phascolarctos cinereus. During hot weather, koalas enhanced conductive heat loss by seeking out and resting against tree trunks that were substantially cooler than ambient air temperature. Using a biophysical model of heat exchange, we show that this behaviour greatly reduces the amount of heat that must be lost via evaporative cooling, potentially increasing koala survival during extreme heat events. While it has long been known that internal temperatures of trees differ from ambient air temperatures, the relevance of this for arboreal and semi-arboreal mammals has not previously been explored. Our results highlight the important role of tree trunks as aboveground ‘heat sinks’, providing cool local microenvironments not only for koalas, but also for all tree-dwelling species. PMID:24899683

  15. The Kinesin Adaptor Calsyntenin-1 Organizes Microtubule Polarity and Regulates Dynamics during Sensory Axon Arbor Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary C. Halloran

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Axon growth and branching, and development of neuronal polarity are critically dependent on proper organization and dynamics of the microtubule (MT cytoskeleton. MTs must organize with correct polarity for delivery of diverse cargos to appropriate subcellular locations, yet the molecular mechanisms regulating MT polarity remain poorly understood. Moreover, how an actively branching axon reorganizes MTs to direct their plus ends distally at branch points is unknown. We used high-speed, in vivo imaging of polymerizing MT plus ends to characterize MT dynamics in developing sensory axon arbors in zebrafish embryos. We find that axonal MTs are highly dynamic throughout development, and that the peripheral and central axons of sensory neurons show differences in MT behaviors. Furthermore, we show that Calsyntenin-1 (Clstn-1, a kinesin adaptor required for sensory axon branching, also regulates MT polarity in developing axon arbors. In wild type neurons the vast majority of MTs are directed in the correct plus-end-distal orientation from early stages of development. Loss of Clstn-1 causes an increase in MTs polymerizing in the retrograde direction. These misoriented MTs most often are found near growth cones and branch points, suggesting Clstn-1 is particularly important for organizing MT polarity at these locations. Together, our results suggest that Clstn-1, in addition to regulating kinesin-mediated cargo transport, also organizes the underlying MT highway during axon arbor development.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  17. The role of indicator species: Neotropical migratory song birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theodore R. Simons; Kerry N. Rabenold; David A. Buehler; Jaime A. Collazo; Kathleen E. Franzreb

    1999-01-01

    Southern Appalachian forests support some of the richest avian diversity in North America, including some 75 species of Neotropical migrants, birds that perform the remarkable feat of making much of the Western Hemisphere their home. This diverse group includes the swallows, kingbirds, and other flycatchers that feed in the air on flying insects. The Eastern kingbird...

  18. Molecular phylogeny of Neotropical monogeneans (Platyhelminthes: Monogenea) from catfishes (Siluriformes)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mendoza-Palmero, Carlos Alonso; Blasco-Costa, I.; Scholz, Tomáš

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 8, MAR 18 2015 (2015), s. 164 ISSN 1756-3305 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Phylogeny * Monogenea * Dactylogyridae * Neotropical region * Diversity * Siluriformes * 28S rRNA Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 3.234, year: 2015

  19. A preliminary survey of foliar sclerenchyma in neotropical Loranthaceae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuijt, J.; Lye, D.

    2005-01-01

    The foliar sclerenchyma of all genera of neotropical Loranthaceae is surveyed by means of cleared leaves, using selected species. Three general categories of sclerenchyma are recognized. Fibers may form discontinuous or continuous bundles associated with veins or, more rarely, occur as individual

  20. The neotropical genus Opeatocerata Melander (Díptera, Empididae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth G. V. Smith

    1989-01-01

    Full Text Available The Neotropical empidid genus Opeatocerata Melander, hitherto known from only a sigle female from Mexico, is redefined in the light of new material, including males. Three new species are described and illustrated, a key provided and the presence of the genus now additionally established in Costa Rica, Panama, Bolivia, Ecuador, Trinidad and Brazil.

  1. Origin and management of neotropical cassava arthropod pests ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Cassava, one of the worlds major food crops is grown throughout the tropical regions of the world. Cassava originated in the neotropics; it was introduced into West Africa from Brazil by slave traders in the 1500's, and taken to Asia during the 17th century. Consequently the greatest diversity of cassava pests, as well as their ...

  2. Hearing diversity in moths confronting a neotropical bat assemblage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobo-Cuan, Ariadna; Kössl, Manfred; Mora, Emanuel C

    2017-09-01

    The tympanal ear is an evolutionary acquisition which helps moths survive predation from bats. The greater diversity of bats and echolocation strategies in the Neotropics compared with temperate zones would be expected to impose different sensory requirements on the neotropical moths. However, even given some variability among moth assemblages, the frequencies of best hearing of moths from different climate zones studied to date have been roughly the same: between 20 and 60 kHz. We have analyzed the auditory characteristics of tympanate moths from Cuba, a neotropical island with high levels of bat diversity and a high incidence of echolocation frequencies above those commonly at the upper limit of moths' hearing sensitivity. Moths of the superfamilies Noctuoidea, Geometroidea and Pyraloidea were examined. Audiograms were determined by non-invasively measuring distortion-product otoacoustic emissions. We also quantified the frequency spectrum of the echolocation sounds to which this moth community is exposed. The hearing ranges of moths in our study showed best frequencies between 36 and 94 kHz. High sensitivity to frequencies above 50 kHz suggests that the auditory sensitivity of moths is suited to the sounds used by sympatric echolocating bat fauna. Biodiversity characterizes predators and prey in the Neotropics, but the bat-moth acoustic interaction keeps spectrally matched.

  3. Wood anatomy of the neotropical Sapotaceae. VII, Chrysophyllum

    Science.gov (United States)

    B. F. Kukachka

    1978-01-01

    In the neotropics, the genus Chrysophyllum consists of C. cainito and a number of species which have recently been assigned to the genus Cynodendron. Many taxonomists have not accepted the new genus Cynodendron and this is supported by the present study of the wood anatomy. In this restricted sense, Chrysophyllum consists of a group of closely related species that are...

  4. Wood anatomy of the neotropical Sapotaceae : XIV. Elaeoluma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohumil Francis Kukachka

    1980-01-01

    The genus Elaeoluma consists of three species distributed in the Amazon Basin, Surinam, Guyana, and Venezuela. The description presented here is based on E. glabrescens of the Amazon Basin. The wood is easily differentiated from all other neotropical Sapotaceae by its pale brown color, reticulate parenchyma, which is hardly discernable with a hand lens, and a low...

  5. Point Count Length and Detection of Forest Neotropical Migrant Birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deanna K. Dawson; David R. Smith; Chandler S. Robbins

    1995-01-01

    Comparisons of bird abundances among years or among habitats assume that the rates at which birds are detected and counted are constant within species. We use point count data collected in forests of the Mid-Atlantic states to estimate detection probabilities for Neotropical migrant bird species as a function of count length. For some species, significant differences...

  6. The ecology of migrant birds: A neotropical perspective [book review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah M. Finch

    1998-01-01

    Originally published by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1983 as Nearctic Avian Migrants in the Neotropics with coauthors Gene Morton, Tom Lovejoy, and Jim Ruos, the initial work has been considerably expanded, updated, and revised by John Rappole. Indeed, the revision warranted publication in Spanish in 1993 followed by further revision that resulted in this...

  7. Effects of pesticides and contaminants on neotropical migrants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholas W. Gard; Michael J. Hooper; Richard S. Bennett

    1993-01-01

    Many agricultural pesticides and industrial contaminants are capable of adversely affecting birds through direct effects such as elevated mortality rates and decreased reproductive success or indirectly by modifying habitat composition or food availability. Although neotropical migrants are potentially exposed to these contaminants on their breeding, migratory and...

  8. Management implications of cowbird parasitism on neotropical migrant songbirds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott K. Robinson; Joseph A. Grzybowski; Stephen I. Rothstein; Margaret C. Brittingham; Lisa J. Petit; Frank R. Thompson

    1993-01-01

    Populations of brood parasitic Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molofhrus afer) have increased to the point where they pose a potential threat to populations of many neotropical migrant songbirds. Because cowbirds mostly feed in short grass (e.g., pastures and lawns) or on bare ground (e.g., row crops), they benefit directly from human activities. Cowbirds...

  9. Population trends and management opportunities for neotropical migrants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandler S. Robbins; John. R. Sauer; Bruce G. Peterjohn

    1993-01-01

    The Breeding Bird Survey shows that certain Neotropical migrant songbird populations have been declining over the past 26 years. Among them are forest birds that require extensive forest on the breeding grounds and also forested habitats on tropical wintering grounds. Other species have shown significant declines only since the early 1980's. Birds with broader...

  10. The genome sequence of the leaf-cutter ant Atta cephalotes reveals insights into its obligate symbiotic lifestyle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garret Suen

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Leaf-cutter ants are one of the most important herbivorous insects in the Neotropics, harvesting vast quantities of fresh leaf material. The ants use leaves to cultivate a fungus that serves as the colony's primary food source. This obligate ant-fungus mutualism is one of the few occurrences of farming by non-humans and likely facilitated the formation of their massive colonies. Mature leaf-cutter ant colonies contain millions of workers ranging in size from small garden tenders to large soldiers, resulting in one of the most complex polymorphic caste systems within ants. To begin uncovering the genomic underpinnings of this system, we sequenced the genome of Atta cephalotes using 454 pyrosequencing. One prediction from this ant's lifestyle is that it has undergone genetic modifications that reflect its obligate dependence on the fungus for nutrients. Analysis of this genome sequence is consistent with this hypothesis, as we find evidence for reductions in genes related to nutrient acquisition. These include extensive reductions in serine proteases (which are likely unnecessary because proteolysis is not a primary mechanism used to process nutrients obtained from the fungus, a loss of genes involved in arginine biosynthesis (suggesting that this amino acid is obtained from the fungus, and the absence of a hexamerin (which sequesters amino acids during larval development in other insects. Following recent reports of genome sequences from other insects that engage in symbioses with beneficial microbes, the A. cephalotes genome provides new insights into the symbiotic lifestyle of this ant and advances our understanding of host-microbe symbioses.

  11. The Genome Sequence of the Leaf-Cutter Ant Atta cephalotes Reveals Insights into Its Obligate Symbiotic Lifestyle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suen, Garret; Holt, Carson; Abouheif, Ehab; Bornberg-Bauer, Erich; Bouffard, Pascal; Caldera, Eric J.; Cash, Elizabeth; Cavanaugh, Amy; Denas, Olgert; Elhaik, Eran; Favé, Marie-Julie; Gadau, Jürgen; Gibson, Joshua D.; Graur, Dan; Grubbs, Kirk J.; Hagen, Darren E.; Harkins, Timothy T.; Helmkampf, Martin; Hu, Hao; Johnson, Brian R.; Kim, Jay; Marsh, Sarah E.; Moeller, Joseph A.; Muñoz-Torres, Mónica C.; Murphy, Marguerite C.; Naughton, Meredith C.; Nigam, Surabhi; Overson, Rick; Rajakumar, Rajendhran; Reese, Justin T.; Scott, Jarrod J.; Smith, Chris R.; Tao, Shu; Tsutsui, Neil D.; Viljakainen, Lumi; Wissler, Lothar; Yandell, Mark D.; Zimmer, Fabian; Taylor, James; Slater, Steven C.; Clifton, Sandra W.; Warren, Wesley C.; Elsik, Christine G.; Smith, Christopher D.; Weinstock, George M.; Gerardo, Nicole M.; Currie, Cameron R.

    2011-01-01

    Leaf-cutter ants are one of the most important herbivorous insects in the Neotropics, harvesting vast quantities of fresh leaf material. The ants use leaves to cultivate a fungus that serves as the colony's primary food source. This obligate ant-fungus mutualism is one of the few occurrences of farming by non-humans and likely facilitated the formation of their massive colonies. Mature leaf-cutter ant colonies contain millions of workers ranging in size from small garden tenders to large soldiers, resulting in one of the most complex polymorphic caste systems within ants. To begin uncovering the genomic underpinnings of this system, we sequenced the genome of Atta cephalotes using 454 pyrosequencing. One prediction from this ant's lifestyle is that it has undergone genetic modifications that reflect its obligate dependence on the fungus for nutrients. Analysis of this genome sequence is consistent with this hypothesis, as we find evidence for reductions in genes related to nutrient acquisition. These include extensive reductions in serine proteases (which are likely unnecessary because proteolysis is not a primary mechanism used to process nutrients obtained from the fungus), a loss of genes involved in arginine biosynthesis (suggesting that this amino acid is obtained from the fungus), and the absence of a hexamerin (which sequesters amino acids during larval development in other insects). Following recent reports of genome sequences from other insects that engage in symbioses with beneficial microbes, the A. cephalotes genome provides new insights into the symbiotic lifestyle of this ant and advances our understanding of host–microbe symbioses. PMID:21347285

  12. The effect of water on the ground nesting habits of the giant tropical ant, Paraponera clavata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elahi, Robin

    2005-11-18

    The large predatory ant, Paraponera clavata, exerts measurable top-down effects in wet and moist Neotropical forests, and therefore its distribution has potential ecological implications. To determine how water affects the presence of this important predator, the ground nesting ecology of P. clavata was examined with respect to various habitat characteristics. Four hectares of disturbed Costa Rican lowland rain forest were surveyed for ant colonies to determine nest distribution patterns in wet and dry habitat; significantly more colonies were found in dry habitat. Seventeen of 19 nests built on slopes of > 5 degrees inclination were positioned on the downward side of the tree, possibly using the trunk as a shield against runoff during rain showers. Moisture and pH inside nests were significantly different from adjacent soil. These results suggest that water influences the ground nesting habits of P. clavata, thus ecological differences between comparatively wet and dry portions of tropical forests may arise from the relative abundance of this ant species.

  13. Ant species (Hymenoptera, Formicidae from the seasonally dry tropical forest of northeastern Brazil: a compilation from field surveys in Bahia and literature records

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mônica A. Ulysséa

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Ant species (Hymenoptera, Formicidae from the seasonally dry tropical forest of northeastern Brazil: a compilation from field surveys in Bahia and literature records. The Caatingas occur predominantly in northeastern Brazil and comparatively it is the biome that received less attention than any other ecosystem in Brazil, representing the region where invertebrate groups are less known. We present here the first list of ant species of the Caatingas, compiling information from the literature, from a study of samples preserved in alcohol in the Laboratory of Entomology (Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, and from a field survey conducted in Milagres, Bahia, submitting standardized 1-m² samples of the leaf-litter to Winkler extractors. Summing all information, 11 subfamilies, 61 genera and 173 species (plus one subspecies of ants are recognized in the biome. This species number does not consider morphospecies that could not be named due to the lack of reliable recent taxonomic information for some Neotropical ant genera. The list presented here for ant species of the Caatingas is therefore underestimated, but it is relevant because it allows the identification of areas to be sampled in order to improve our knowledge of the diversity of ants in this biome.

  14. Diversity of leaf litter ant communities in Ton Nga Chang Wildlife Sanctuary and nearby rubber plantations, Songkhla, Southern Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias O. Bickel

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Large areas of Southern Thailand's former natural rainforest have been replaced by rubber plantations. Despite the fact that rubber plantations dominate the landscape, little is known about its capacity to sustain forest dwelling species. We used leaf litter ants as a bioindicator from two natural forests, a rubber plantation forest and a completely cleared ruderal area in Southern Thailand, Songkla Province. There was a substantial decline in ant diversity from the undisturbed forest towards the ruderal area along a gradient of environmental disturbance. Additionally, there was a turnover in species composition between the different habitats and an increase in arboreal species "enhancing" the sparse ground foraging ant community in the plantation habitat. Also, alien tramp species replaced native species in the plantation and ruderal habitats. This study shows that despite their forest like appearance rubber plantations are a poor habitat for native leaf litter-inhabiting ants and unsuitable to sustain biodiversity in general. The changes in community structure in the secondary forest showed the importance of primary forest habitat to maintain regional biodiversity.

  15. Phospholipase A1-based cross-reactivity among venoms of clinically relevant Hymenoptera from Neotropical and temperate regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Riverol, Amilcar; Fernandes, Luís Gustavo Romani; Musacchio Lasa, Alexis; Dos Santos-Pinto, José Roberto Aparecido; Moitinho Abram, Débora; Izuka Moraes, Gabriel Hideki; Jabs, Frederic; Miehe, Michaela; Seismman, Henning; Palma, Mario Sergio; de Lima Zollner, Ricardo; Spillner, Edzard; Brochetto-Braga, Márcia Regina

    2018-01-01

    Molecular cross-reactivity caused by allergen homology or cross-reactive carbohydrate determinants (CCDs) is a major challenge for diagnosis and immunotherapy of insect venom allergy. Venom phospholipases A1 (PLA1s) are classical, mostly non-glycosylated wasp and ant allergens that provide diagnostic benefit for differentiation of genuine sensitizations from cross-reactivity. As CCD-free molecules, venom PLA1s are not causative for CCD-based cross-reactivity. Little is known however about the protein-based cross-reactivity of PLA1 within vespid species. Here, we address PLA1-based cross-reactivity among ten clinically relevant Hymenoptera venoms from Neotropical and temperate regions including Polybia paulista (paulistinha) venom and Vespula vulgaris (yellow jacket) venom. In order to evaluate cross-reactivity, sera of mice sensitized with recombinant PLA1 (rPoly p 1) from P. paulista wasp venom were used. Pronounced IgE and IgG based cross-reactivity was detected for wasp venoms regardless the geographical region of origin. The cross-reactivity correlated well with the identity of the primary sequence and 3-D models of PLA1 proteins. In contrast, these mice sera showed no reaction with honeybee (HBV) and fire ant venom. Furthermore, sera from patients monosensitized to HBV and fire ants did not recognize the rPoly p 1 in immunoblotting. Our findings reveal the presence of conserved epitopes in the PLA1s from several clinically relevant wasps as major cause of PLA1-based in vitro cross-reactivity. These findings emphasize the limitations but also the potential of PLA1-based HVA diagnostics. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Male parentage in army ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, Daniel J C; Schöning, Caspar; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2006-01-01

    of active research in insect sociobiology. Here we present microsatellite data for 176 males from eight colonies of the African army ant Dorylus (Anomma) molestus. Comparison with worker genotypes and inferred queen genotypes from the same colonies show that workers do not or at best very rarely reproduce...

  17. A cellular automata model for ant trails

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this study, the unidirectional ant traffic flow with U-turn in an ant trail was investigated using one-dimensional cellular automata model. It is known that ants communicate with each other by dropping a chemical, called pheromone, on the substrate. Apart from the studies in the literature, it was considered in the model that ...

  18. Fungal Adaptations to Mutualistic Life with Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kooij, Pepijn Wilhelmus

    Fungus-growing ants (Attini) feed off a fungus they cultivate in a mutualistic symbiosis in underground chambers by providing it substrate they collect outside the colony. The tribe of Attine ants ranges from small colonies of the paleo- and basal Attine species with a few hundred workers that fo...... that the fungus evolved some incredible adaptations to a mutualistic life with the ants....

  19. A new ant species of Oxyepoecus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae, with the description of Oxyepoecus browni gyne and new records for the genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mônica A. Ulysséa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We describe a new species of Oxyepoecus Santschi, 1926, Oxyepoecus regularis sp. nov., based on workers and a gyne collected in "Caatinga Arbórea" (Arboreal Shrubland in Milagres and "Mata Seca" (Dry Forest in Boa Vista do Tupim, both in the state of Bahia, Brazil. The gyne of Oxyepoecus browni Albuquerque & Brandão, 2004, collected in the same leaf litter ant survey, is also described. In addition, we present new records for Oxyepoecus species in Northeastern Brazil.

  20. Neuropeptides in the desert ant Cataglyphis fortis: Mass spectrometric analysis, localization, and age-related changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Franziska; Vanselow, Jens T; Schlosser, Andreas; Wegener, Christian; Rössler, Wolfgang

    2017-03-01

    Cataglyphis desert ants exhibit an age-related polyethism, with ants performing tasks in the dark nest for the first ∼4 weeks of their adult life before they switch to visually based long-distance navigation to forage. Although behavioral and sensory aspects of this transition have been studied, the internal factors triggering the behavioral changes are largely unknown. We suggest the neuropeptide families allatostatin A (AstA), allatotropin (AT), short neuropeptide F (sNPF), and tachykinin (TK) as potential candidates. Based on a neuropeptidomic analysis in Camponotus floridanus, nano-LC-ESI MS/MS was used to identify these neuropeptides biochemically in Cataglyphis fortis. Furthermore, we show that all identified peptide families are present in the central brain and ventral ganglia of C. fortis whereas in the retrocerebral complex only sNPF could be detected. Immunofluorescence staining against AstA, AT, and TK in the brain revealed arborizations of AstA- and TK-positive neurons in primary sensory processing centers and higher order integration centers, whereas AT immunoreactivity was restricted to the central complex, the antennal mechanosensory and motor center, and the protocerebrum. For artificially dark-kept ants, we found that TK distribution changed markedly in the central complex from days 1 and 7 to day 14 after eclosion. Based on functional studies in Drosophila, this age-related variation of TK is suggestive of a modulatory role in locomotion behavior in C. fortis. We conclude that the general distribution and age-related changes in neuropeptides indicate a modulatory role in sensory input regions and higher order processing centers in the desert ant brain. J. Comp. Neurol. 525:901-918, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Microsatellite Primers for Fungus-Growing Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen Fredsted, Palle; Gertsch, Pia J.; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan (Koos)

    2002-01-01

    We isolated five polymorphic microsatellite loci from a library of two thousand recombinant clones of two fungus-growing ant species, Cyphomyrmex longiscapus and Trachymyrmex cf. zeteki. Amplification and heterozygosity were tested in five species of higher attine ants using both the newly...... developed primers and earlier published primers that were developed for fungus-growing ants. A total of 20 variable microsatellite loci, developed for six different species of fungus-growing ants, are now available for studying the population genetics and colony kin-structure of these ants....

  2. Microsatellite primers for fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen, Palle; Gertsch, P J; Boomsma, JJ

    2002-01-01

    We isolated five polymorphic microsatellite loci from a library of two thousand recombinant clones of two fungus-growing ant species, Cyphomyrmex longiscapus and Trachymyrmex cf. zeteki. Amplification and heterozygosity were tested in five species of higher attine ants using both the newly...... developed primers and earlier published primers that were developed for fungus-growing ants. A total of 20 variable microsatellite loci, developed for six different species of fungus-growing ants, are now available for studying the population genetics and colony kin-structure of these ants....

  3. Canopy Venom: Proteomic Comparison among New World Arboreal Pit-Viper Venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debono, Jordan; Cochran, Chip; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Nouwens, Amanda; Rajapakse, Niwanthi W; Kawasaki, Minami; Wood, Kelly; Dobson, James; Baumann, Kate; Jouiaei, Mahdokht; Jackson, Timothy N W; Koludarov, Ivan; Low, Dolyce; Ali, Syed A; Smith, A Ian; Barnes, Andrew; Fry, Bryan G

    2016-07-08

    Central and South American pitvipers, belonging to the genera Bothrops and Bothriechis, have independently evolved arboreal tendencies. Little is known regarding the composition and activity of their venoms. In order to close this knowledge gap, venom proteomics and toxin activity of species of Bothriechis, and Bothrops (including Bothriopsis) were investigated through established analytical methods. A combination of proteomics and bioactivity techniques was used to demonstrate a similar diversification of venom composition between large and small species within Bothriechis and Bothriopsis. Increasing our understanding of the evolution of complex venom cocktails may facilitate future biodiscoveries.

  4. Checklist of sea turtles endohelminth in Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Werneck M. R.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a list of parasites described in sea turtles from the Neotropical region. Through the review of literature the occurrence of 79 taxa of helminthes parasites were observed, mostly consisting of the Phylum Platyhelminthes with 76 species distributed in 14 families and 2 families of the Phylum Nematoda within 3 species. Regarding the parasite records, the most studied host was the green turtle (Chelonia mydas followed by the hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata, olive ridley turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea, loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta and leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea. Overall helminths were reported in 12 countries and in the Caribbean Sea region. This checklist is the largest compilation of data on helminths found in sea turtles in the Neotropical region.

  5. Assembly and phylogenetic structure of Neotropical palm communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eiserhardt, Wolf L.; Svenning, J.-C.; Balslev, Henrik

    Diversity, composition and dynamics of Neotropical palm communities are receiving an increasing amount of attention due to their economic importance, but also because their high species richness and functional diversity render them valuable model systems for overall forest biodiversity. However......, to better understand these palm communities, it is crucial to gain insight into the mechanisms responsible for their assembly. These can be dispersal limitation, environmental filtering, or biotic interactions. If the degree of niche conservatism is known for a group of organisms, patterns of community...... an unspecific assumption of “general niche conservatism”, phylogenetic signal will be analysed for Neotropical palms. Moreover, as an example for evolutionary mechanisms disrupting phylogenetic signal, speciation modes will be examined in selected genera. With the combined results we aim to show the relative...

  6. Assessing Arboreal Adaptations of Bird Antecedents: Testing the Ecological Setting of the Origin of the Avian Flight Stroke

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dececchi, T. Alexander; Larsson, Hans C. E.

    2011-01-01

    The origin of avian flight is a classic macroevolutionary transition with research spanning over a century. Two competing models explaining this locomotory transition have been discussed for decades: ground up versus trees down. Although it is impossible to directly test either of these theories, it is possible to test one of the requirements for the trees-down model, that of an arboreal paravian. We test for arboreality in non-avian theropods and early birds with comparisons to extant avian, mammalian, and reptilian scansors and climbers using a comprehensive set of morphological characters. Non-avian theropods, including the small, feathered deinonychosaurs, and Archaeopteryx, consistently and significantly cluster with fully terrestrial extant mammals and ground-based birds, such as ratites. Basal birds, more advanced than Archaeopteryx, cluster with extant perching ground-foraging birds. Evolutionary trends immediately prior to the origin of birds indicate skeletal adaptations opposite that expected for arboreal climbers. Results reject an arboreal capacity for the avian stem lineage, thus lending no support for the trees-down model. Support for a fully terrestrial ecology and origin of the avian flight stroke has broad implications for the origin of powered flight for this clade. A terrestrial origin for the avian flight stroke challenges the need for an intermediate gliding phase, presents the best resolved series of the evolution of vertebrate powered flight, and may differ fundamentally from the origin of bat and pterosaur flight, whose antecedents have been postulated to have been arboreal and gliding. PMID:21857918

  7. Assessing arboreal adaptations of bird antecedents: testing the ecological setting of the origin of the avian flight stroke.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T Alexander Dececchi

    Full Text Available The origin of avian flight is a classic macroevolutionary transition with research spanning over a century. Two competing models explaining this locomotory transition have been discussed for decades: ground up versus trees down. Although it is impossible to directly test either of these theories, it is possible to test one of the requirements for the trees-down model, that of an arboreal paravian. We test for arboreality in non-avian theropods and early birds with comparisons to extant avian, mammalian, and reptilian scansors and climbers using a comprehensive set of morphological characters. Non-avian theropods, including the small, feathered deinonychosaurs, and Archaeopteryx, consistently and significantly cluster with fully terrestrial extant mammals and ground-based birds, such as ratites. Basal birds, more advanced than Archaeopteryx, cluster with extant perching ground-foraging birds. Evolutionary trends immediately prior to the origin of birds indicate skeletal adaptations opposite that expected for arboreal climbers. Results reject an arboreal capacity for the avian stem lineage, thus lending no support for the trees-down model. Support for a fully terrestrial ecology and origin of the avian flight stroke has broad implications for the origin of powered flight for this clade. A terrestrial origin for the avian flight stroke challenges the need for an intermediate gliding phase, presents the best resolved series of the evolution of vertebrate powered flight, and may differ fundamentally from the origin of bat and pterosaur flight, whose antecedents have been postulated to have been arboreal and gliding.

  8. New Neotropical species of Prioninae and Cerambycinae (Cerambycidae)

    OpenAIRE

    GALILEO, Maria Helena M.; MARTINS, Ubirajara R.

    2010-01-01

    Novas espécies descritas: Hovorelus adiectus sp. nov. (Anacolini) da Costa Rica; Stenoeme aguilari sp. nov. do Paraguai e Placoeme wappesi sp. nov. da Bolívia (Oemini); da Bahia, Brasil: Coeloxestia spinosa sp. nov. (Cerambycini, Sphallotrichina); Stizocera debilis sp. nov., Anelaphus bravoi sp. nov. (Elaphidionini) e Chydarteres formosus sp. nov. (Trachyderini).New Neotropical species of Prioninae and Cerambycinae (Cerambycidae). New species described: Hovorelus adiectus sp. nov. (Anacolini)...

  9. DNA barcode detects high genetic structure within neotropical bird species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika Sendra Tavares

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Towards lower latitudes the number of recognized species is not only higher, but also phylogeographic subdivision within species is more pronounced. Moreover, new genetically isolated populations are often described in recent phylogenies of Neotropical birds suggesting that the number of species in the region is underestimated. Previous COI barcoding of Argentinean bird species showed more complex patterns of regional divergence in the Neotropical than in the North American avifauna. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Here we analyzed 1,431 samples from 561 different species to extend the Neotropical bird barcode survey to lower latitudes, and detected even higher geographic structure within species than reported previously. About 93% (520 of the species were identified correctly from their DNA barcodes. The remaining 41 species were not monophyletic in their COI sequences because they shared barcode sequences with closely related species (N = 21 or contained very divergent clusters suggestive of putative new species embedded within the gene tree (N = 20. Deep intraspecific divergences overlapping with among-species differences were detected in 48 species, often with samples from large geographic areas and several including multiple subspecies. This strong population genetic structure often coincided with breaks between different ecoregions or areas of endemism. CONCLUSIONS: The taxonomic uncertainty associated with the high incidence of non-monophyletic species and discovery of putative species obscures studies of historical patterns of species diversification in the Neotropical region. We showed that COI barcodes are a valuable tool to indicate which taxa would benefit from more extensive taxonomic revisions with multilocus approaches. Moreover, our results support hypotheses that the megadiversity of birds in the region is associated with multiple geographic processes starting well before the Quaternary and extending to more recent

  10. Pterandra pyroidea: a case of pollination shift within Neotropical Malpighiaceae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappellari, Simone C.; Haleem, Muhammad A.; Marsaioli, Anita J.; Tidon, Rosana; Simpson, Beryl B.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims Most Neotropical species of Malpighiaceae produce floral fatty oils in calyx glands to attract pollinating oil-collecting bees, which depend on this resource for reproduction. This specialized type of pollination system tends to be lost in members of the family that occur outside the geographic distribution (e.g. Africa) of Neotropical oil-collecting bees. This study focused on the pollination ecology, chemical ecology and reproductive biology of an oil flower species, Pterandra pyroidea (Malpighiaceae) from the Brazilian Cerrado. Populations of this species consist of plants with oil-secreting (glandular) flowers, plants with non-oil-secreting flowers (eglandular) or a mix of both plant types. This study specifically aims to clarify the role of eglandular morphs in this species. Methods Data on pollinators were recorded by in situ observations. Breeding system experiments were conducted by isolating inflorescences and by enzymatic reactions. Floral resources, pollen and floral oils offered by this species were analysed by staining and a combination of various spectroscopic methods. Key Results Eglandular flowers of P. pyroidea do not act as mimics of their oil-producing conspecifics to attract pollinators. Instead, both oil-producing and oil-free flowers depend on pollen-collecting bees for reproduction, and their main pollinators are bumble-bees. Floral oils produced by glandular flowers are less complex than those described in closely related genera. Conclusions Eglandular flowers represent a shift in the pollination system in which oil is being lost and pollen is becoming the main reward of P. pyroidea flowers. Pollination shifts of this kind have hitherto not been demonstrated empirically within Neotropical Malpighiaceae and this species exhibits an unusual transition from a specialized towards a generalized pollination system in an area considered the hotspot of oil-collecting bee diversity in the Neotropics. Transitions of this type

  11. WILD BEES (HYMENOPTERA: APOIDEA AS BIOINDICATORS IN THE NEOTROPICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Reyes-Novelo

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available The present is a review about the use of wild bees as an indicator group in biodiversity and fragmentation studies. It describes the criteria used for the selection of bioindicator groups and it discusses the available information to evaluate if wild bees meet this criteria. The reviewed information suggests that wild bees comply with the requeriments for a suitable bioindicator group. Its use is recommended for Neotropical ecosystems.

  12. Contribution of conservation genetics in assessing neotropical freshwater fish biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    NM. Piorski

    Full Text Available Human activities have a considerable impact on hydrographic systems and fish fauna. The present review on conservation genetics of neotropical freshwater fish reveals that DNA analyses have been promoting increased knowledge on the genetic structure of fish species and their response to environmental changes. This knowledge is fundamental to the management of wild fish populations and the establishment of Evolutionary Significant Units capable of conserving genetic integrity. While population structuring can occur even in long-distance migratory fish, isolated populations can show reduced genetic variation and be at greater risk of extinction. Phylogeography and phylogeny have been powerful tools in understanding the evolution of fish populations, species and communities in distinct neotropic environments. Captive fish can be used to introduce new individuals and genes into the wild and their benefits and disadvantages can be monitored through genetic analysis. Understanding how fish biodiversity in neotropical freshwaters is generated and maintained is highly important, as these habitats are transformed by human development and fish communities are increasingly exploited as food sources to sustain a growing human population.

  13. First report of two species of scarab beetles (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae inside nests of Azteca cf. chartifex Forel (Hymenoptera, Formicidae in Brazilian Amazonian Rainforest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Rafael Alves-Oliveira

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT We report for the first time the occurrence of two species of scarab beetles, Phileurus carinatus declivis Prell, 1914 (Scarabaeidae: Dynastinae and Cyclidius elongatus (Olivier, 1789 (Cetoniinae: Cremastocheilini inside nests of Azteca cf. chartifex Forel, 1896, a neotropical arboreal ant species. This report indicates that these two beetle species are associated, at least as inquilines, to this ant species, although the nature of this relationship remains unclear.

  14. Habitat Modification by the Leaf-Cutter Ant, Atta cephalotes, and Patterns of Leaf-Litter Arthropod Communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Rachel L; Murphy, Serena K; Moran, Matthew D

    2017-12-08

    Ecosystem engineers are profoundly important in many biological communities. A Neotropical taxonomic group considered to have engineering effects is the Formicidae (ants). Leaf-cutter ants (LCAs), in particular, which form extensive colonies of millions of individuals, can be important ecosystem engineers in these environments. While the effects of LCAs on plant community structure and soil chemistry are well-studied, their effects on consumers are poorly understood. Therefore, we examined the indirect effects of the LCA Atta cephalotes L. on the leaf-litter arthropod community. We compared abundance and diversity patterns at ant nests to areas distant from nests, utilizing both a factorial design and gradient analysis for both nocturnal and diurnal arthropods. We found that arthropod abundance and diversity was significantly lower for multiple taxonomic groups and trophic levels near leaf-cutter nests, and this pattern was strongest at night. Exceptions to this pattern included two morphospecies of Collembola that were more abundant on nests, suggesting some specialization for these species. For the gradient analysis, abundance increased exponentially for most groups of arthropods. However, for the dominant arthropod species, the amphipod Cerrorchestia hyloraina Lindeman, a quadratic function was the best fit curvilinear model for abundance. It appeared that C. hyloraina had maximal abundance at the transition between nest site and less disturbed forest. These results indicate that LCA activity has a strong effect on the leaf-litter arthropod community, adding to spatial heterogeneity within neotropical forests. These effects may translate into changes in important ecological processes such as nutrient cycling and food web function. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Revolutionizing Remote Exploration with ANTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Rilee, M. L.; Curtis, S.; Truszkowski, W.

    2002-05-01

    We are developing the Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm (ANTS) architecture based on an insect colony analogue for the cost-effective, efficient, systematic survey of remote or inaccessible areas with multiple object targets, including planetary surface, marine, airborne, and space environments. The mission context is the exploration in the 2020s of the most compelling remaining targets in the solar system: main belt asteroids. Main belt asteroids harbor important clues to Solar System origins and evolution which are central to NASA's goals in Space Science. Asteroids are smaller than planets, but their number is far greater, and their combined surface area likely dwarfs the Earth's. An asteroid survey will dramatically increase our understanding of the local resources available for the Human Exploration and Development of Space. During the mission composition, shape, gravity, and orbit parameters could be returned to Earth for perhaps several thousand asteroids. A survey of this area will rival the great explorations that encircled this globe, opened up the New World, and laid the groundwork for the progress and challenges of the last centuries. The ANTS architecture for a main belt survey consists of a swarm of as many as a thousand or more highly specialized pico-spacecraft that form teams to survey as many as one hundred asteroids a month. Multi-level autonomy is critical for ANTS and the objective of the proposed study is to work through the implications and constraints this entails. ANTS couples biologically inspired autonomic control for basic functions to higher level artificial intelligence that together enable individual spacecraft to operate as specialized, cooperative, social agents. This revolutionary approach postulates highly advanced, but familiar, components integrated and operated in a way that uniquely transcends any evolutionary extrapolation of existing trends and enables thousand-spacecraft missions.

  16. Nyctanthes arbor-tristis Ameliorated FCA-Induced Experimental Arthritis: A Comparative Study among Different Extracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uroos, Maliha; Sattar, Shumaila; Umer, Nigarish; Sharif, Ahsan

    2017-01-01

    Nyctanthes arbor-tristis (NAT) is commonly used traditionally for the treatment of rheumatism and inflammatory diseases. Current study evaluates the antiarthritic potential of NAT using Freund's adjuvant-induced arthritic rat model. Treatments with methanolic, ethyl acetate, and n-hexane extracts were continued for consecutive 20 days. Macroscopic arthritic scoring and water displacement plethysmometry were used to evaluate arthritic development. Hematological and biochemical parameters were investigated and ankle joints were processed for histopathological evaluation. Qualitative phytochemical analysis and GC-MS analysis were conducted for identification of constituents. NAT extracts suppressed arthritic scoring, paw edema, infiltration of inflammatory cells, pannus formation, and bone erosion. The plant extracts ameliorated total leukocytes and platelet counts and nearly normalized red blood cells (RBC) counts and hemoglobin (Hb) content. The extracts were found safe in terms of hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity as determined by aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), creatinine, and urea levels. Comparative analysis showed that ethyl acetate extract produced the highest inhibition of paw edema. The major constituents found in ethyl acetate extract can be classified into three major classes, that is, terpenes, terpenoids, fatty acids, and iridoid glycosides. Current study showed that Nyctanthes arbor-tristis ameliorated experimental rheumatoid arthritis and ethyl acetate extract possessed the highest inhibitory activity. PMID:28676830

  17. Morphology and function of the forelimb in arboreal frogs: specializations for grasping ability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzano, Adriana S; Abdala, Virginia; Herrel, Anthony

    2008-09-01

    Frogs are characterized by a unique morphology associated with their saltatory lifestyle. Although variation in the form and function of the pelvic girdle and associated appendicular system related to specialized locomotor modes such as swimming or burrowing has been documented, the forelimbs have typically been viewed as relatively unspecialized. Yet, previous authors have noted versatility in forelimb function among arboreal frogs associated with feeding. Here we study the morphology and function of the forelimb and hand during locomotion in two species of arboreal frogs (Litoria caerulea and Phyllomedusa bicolor). Our data show a complex arrangement of the distal forelimb and hand musculature with some notable differences between species. Analyses of high-speed video and video fluoroscopy recordings show that forelimbs are used in alternating fashion in a diagonal sequence footfall pattern and that the position of the hand is adjusted when walking on substrates of different diameters. Electromyographic recordings show that the flexors of the hand are active during substrate contact, suggesting the use of gripping to generate a stabilizing torque. Measurements of grasping forces in vivo and during stimulation experiments show that both species, are capable of executing a so-called power grip but also indicates marked differences between species, in the magnitude of forces generated. Stimulation experiments showed an increased control of digit flexion in the more specialized of the two species, allowing it to execute a precision grip paralleled only by that seen in primates.

  18. THE KINETICS OF MULTIBRANCH INTEGRATION ON THE DENDRITIC ARBOR OF CA1 PYRAMIDAL NEURONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunggu eYang

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The process by which synaptic inputs separated in time and space are integrated by the dendritic arbor to produce a sequence of action potentials is among the most fundamental signal transformations that takes place within the central nervous system. Some aspects of this complex process, such as integration at the level of individual dendritic branches, have been extensively studied. But other aspects, such as how inputs from multiple branches are combined, and the kinetics of that integration have not been systematically examined. Using a 3D digital holographic photolysis technique to overcome the challenges posed by the complexities of the 3D anatomy of the dendritic arbor of CA1 pyramidal neurons for conventional photolysis, we show that integration on a single dendrite is fundamentally different from that on multiple dendrites. Multibranch integration occurring at oblique and basal dendrites allows somatic action potential firing of the cell to faithfully follow the driving stimuli over a significantly wider frequency range than what is possible with single branch integration. However, multibranch integration requires greater input strength to drive the somatic action potentials. This tradeoff between sensitivity and kinetics may explain the puzzling report of the predominance of multibranch, rather than single branch, integration from in vivo recordings during presentation of visual stimuli.

  19. Schizophyllum commune: The main cause of dying trees of the Banja Luka arbored walks and parks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matavulj Milan N.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available In the frame of investigation of the main cause of dying trees of the main arbored walks (Mladena Stojanovića Aley and Park, the investigation of the presence and diversity of macrofungi in Banja Luka City were undertaken in the period 2006-2011. Relatively poor generic diversity of lignicolous (pathogenic or potentially pathogenic and saprotrophic macrofungi with only 16 species representing this group (13 basidiomycets: Schizophyllum commune, Fomes fomentarius, Stereum hirsutum, Coriolus versicolor, Flammulina velutipes, Pseudotrametes gibbosa, Ganoderma applanatum, G. lucidum, G. adspersum, Polyporus squamosus, Meripilus giganteus, Laetiporus sulphureus, Auricu­laria auricula-judae, and 3 ascomycets: Nectria cinnabarina, Xylaria hypoxylon, X. poly­morpha were recorded. Such a poor qualitative composition of this very important fungal group could be explained by the reduction in the number of plant species in arbored walks and alleys, as well as the reduction in the number of fungi resistant to heavy air pollution caused by nearby (1-5m fuel combustion in engines. Although only preliminary, our results pointed to the necessity of conservation and protection of the most beautiful features of Banja Luka and its alleys and arbored walks, by undertaking the measures of curing damaged trees and treating them with fungicides in order to wipe out the epiphytia caused in more than 95% of cases (dated May 2011 by Split-gill (Schizophyllum commune, present on dead wood but also on damaged trees of Aesculus hyppocastaneum (127 trees, Tilia cordata (124 trees, Tilia platyphyllos (36 trees, Tilia argentea (40 trees, Acer negundo (20 trees, Platanus acerifolia (2 trees, Robinia pseudoacacia (3 trees, Fraxinus ornus (1 tree, Betula pendula (1 tree, Catalpa sp. (2 trees, etc. Altogether, during the last decade, around 200 trees collapsed or were sanitary cut in Banja Luka arbored walk from the Malta site to the Green bridge, a total length around 5 km. The

  20. Allometry of a neotropical palm, Euterpe edulis Mart. Alometria de uma palmeira Neotropical, Euterpe edulis Mart

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana F. Alves

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available The stem allometry (stem diameter vs. tree height of a Neotropical palm (Euterpe edulis found in rain and seasonal forest of Southeastern Brazil was examined. Observed height-diameter relationships along the stem (diameter at ground level, (dgl, and diameter at breast height (dbh were compared to three theoretical stability mechanical models: elastic similarity, stress similarity and geometric similarity. Slopes of log-transformed height-diameter relationships did not lie near those predicted by any stability mechanical models. Significant differences in stem allometry were found when comparing dgl to dbh, suggesting greater increase in dbh with height. The relationship between stability safety factor (SSF and palm height showed that both dgl and dbh were found to be above McMahon's theoretical buckling limit for dicotyledonous trees, but some individuals approached this limit in relation to dbh. Despite displaying a similar decreasing pattern of SSF with height, differences found in SSF along the stem - greater SSF for dgl when compared to dbh - indicate that the risk of mechanism failure in palms depends upon the size and varies along the stem. Distinct allometric relationships along the stem obtained for Euterpe edulis may be reflecting possible differences in stem design and growth strategies.Neste trabalho foram analisadas as relações entre o diâmetro e a altura de uma palmeira Neotropical (Euterpe edulis comum na Floresta Atlântica do SE do Brasil. As relações observadas entre a altura e o diâmetro ao longo do estipe (diâmetro ao nível do solo (DAS, e diâmetro ao nível do peito (DAP foram comparadas a três modelos teóricos de estabilidade mecânica: similaridade elástica, similaridade de estresse e similaridade geométrica. As inclinações das regressões altura-diâmetro não se ajustaram a nenhum dos modelos de estabilidade mecânica. Diferenças significativas na alometria do estipe foram encontradas comparando-se as rela

  1. Ecosystem services delivered by weaver ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    Weaver ants (Oecopgylla spp.) are increasingly being utilized as efficient biocontrol agents in a number of tropical tree crops, as they prey on pest insects and increase yields. However, recent studies and a review of the literature reveal that a number of other services may derive from the pres......Weaver ants (Oecopgylla spp.) are increasingly being utilized as efficient biocontrol agents in a number of tropical tree crops, as they prey on pest insects and increase yields. However, recent studies and a review of the literature reveal that a number of other services may derive from...... the presence of these ants. First of all, the chemical footprint left by the high density of ants in managed host trees may results in additional benefits. (i) Ant deposits may lead to improved fruit quality, e.g. increased sugar content, (ii) ant deposits may deter important pests (chemical deterrence) from...... crops, and lastly, (iii) ant waste products deposited ias anal spots contain urea that may be taken up by plant leaves and in this way fertilize ant-plants. On top of chemical services, weaver ants have been shown to reduce plant disease incidence via competitive exclusion of other ant species because...

  2. Roadside Survey of Ants on Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Reina L.; Grace, J. Kenneth; Krushelnycky, Paul D.

    2018-01-01

    Hawaii is home to over 60 ant species, including five of the six most damaging invasive ants. Although there have been many surveys of ants in Hawaii, the last island-wide hand-collection survey of ants on Oahu was conducted in 1988–1994. In 2012, a timed hand-collection of ants was made at 44 sites in a systematic, roadside survey throughout Oahu. Ants were identified and species distribution in relation to elevation, precipitation and soil type was analyzed. To assess possible convenience sampling bias, 15 additional sites were sampled further from roads to compare with the samples near roads. Twenty-four species of ants were found and mapped; Pheidole megacephala (F.), Ochetellus glaber (Mayr), and Technomyrmex difficilis Forel were the most frequently encountered ants. For six ant species, a logistic regression was performed with elevation, average annual precipitation, and soil order as explanatory variables. O. glaber was found in areas with lower precipitation around Oahu. Paratrechina longicornis (Latrielle) and Tetramorium simillimum (Smith, F.) were found more often in lower elevations and in areas with the Mollisol soil order. Elevation, precipitation, and soil type were not significant sources of variation for P. megacephala, Plagiolepis alluaudi Emery, and T. difficilis. P. megacephala was associated with fewer mean numbers of ants where it occurred. Ant assemblages near and far from roads did not significantly differ. Many species of ants remain established on Oahu, and recent invaders are spreading throughout the island. Mapping ant distributions contributes to continued documentation and understanding of these pests. PMID:29439503

  3. Wildlife survey and monitoring in the Sky Island Region with an emphasis on neotropical felids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sergio Avila-Villegas; Jessica Lamberton-Moreno

    2013-01-01

    The Sky Island region of southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico consists of isolated mountain ranges separated by deserts and grasslands. It mixes elements from five major ecosystems: the Rocky Mountains, Sierra Madre Occidental, the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts and the Neotropics. Here some Neotropical species reach their northern ranges, such as jaguars...

  4. Status of neotropical migrant landbirds in the Midwest: identifying species of management concern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank R. Thompson; Stephen J. Lewis; Janet D. Green; David N. Ewert

    1993-01-01

    We ranked species of neotropical migrant landbirds by decreasing management concern for their viability in the Midwest. This was part of a coordinated effort by regional working groups of the Partners In Flight Program, an interagency program for the conservation of neotropical migratory birds (NTMBs). Species were ranked by seven criteria, developed by working group...

  5. USDA Forest Service goals and programs for monitoring neotropical migratory birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patricia Manley

    1993-01-01

    The USDA Forest Service (USFS) developed goals, objectives, and guidelines for monitoring neotropical migratory birds (NTMB) on National Forest System lands in response to the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Program Partners in Flight. A USFS task group developed a hierarchical monitoring framework designed to define priorities for type of monitoring data....

  6. Parachuting behavior and predation by ants in the nettle caterpillar, Scopelodes contracta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamazaki, Kazuo

    2010-01-01

    This paper documents the bizarre descending behavior from the tree crown to the ground of the larvae of the moth, Scopelodes contracta Walker (Lepidoptera: Limacodidae) and the interaction of the larva with predatory ants. S. contracta larvae infest leaves of many tree species in urban areas and orchards in Japan. Mature larvae and leaves without basal leaf parts were found under trees of four species infested with S. contracta larvae in Osaka, Japan. Individual larvae riding on leaves were observed falling from tree crowns to the ground. Many S. contracta cocoons were found in the soil below the trees two weeks after the observed parachuting. These observations indicate that S. contracta larvae parachuted to the ground where they spin their cocoons in the soil. When a larva that had just parachuted down was returned to an arboreal twig, the larva repeated the parachuting behavior. This parachuting behavior appears to be adaptive, because larvae can descend to the ground safely and with low energy cost. Worker ants of Tetramorium tsushimae Emery (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Pristomyrmex punctatus Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) occasionally attacked larvae on the ground before they had a chance to burrow in the soil.

  7. An overlooked mandibular-rubbing behavior used during recruitment by the African weaver ant, Oecophylla longinoda.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Roux

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available In Oecophylla, an ant genus comprising two territorially dominant arboreal species, workers are known to (1 use anal spots to mark their territories, (2 drag their gaster along the substrate to deposit short-range recruitment trails, and (3 drag the extruded rectal gland along the substrate to deposit the trails used in long-range recruitment. Here we study an overlooked but important marking behavior in which O. longinoda workers first rub the underside of their mandibles onto the substrate, and then--in a surprising posture--tilt their head and also rub the upper side of their mandibles. We demonstrate that this behavior is used to recruit nestmates. Its frequency varies with the rate at which a new territory, a sugary food source, a prey item, or an alien ant are discovered. Microscopy analyses showed that both the upper side and the underside of the mandibles possess pores linked to secretory glands. So, by rubbing their mandibles onto the substrate, the workers probably spread a secretion from these glands that is involved in nestmate recruitment.

  8. Ant Larval Demand Reduces Aphid Colony Growth Rates in an Ant-Aphid Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James M. Cook

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Ants often form mutualistic interactions with aphids, soliciting honeydew in return for protective services. Under certain circumstances, however, ants will prey upon aphids. In addition, in the presence of ants aphids may increase the quantity or quality of honeydew produced, which is costly. Through these mechanisms, ant attendance can reduce aphid colony growth rates. However, it is unknown whether demand from within the ant colony can affect the ant-aphid interaction. In a factorial experiment, we tested whether the presence of larvae in Lasius niger ant colonies affected the growth rate of Aphis fabae colonies. Other explanatory variables tested were the origin of ant colonies (two separate colonies were used and previous diet (sugar only or sugar and protein. We found that the presence of larvae in the ant colony significantly reduced the growth rate of aphid colonies. Previous diet and colony origin did not affect aphid colony growth rates. Our results suggest that ant colonies balance the flow of two separate resources from aphid colonies- renewable sugars or a protein-rich meal, depending on demand from ant larvae within the nest. Aphid payoffs from the ant-aphid interaction may change on a seasonal basis, as the demand from larvae within the ant colony waxes and wanes.

  9. The distribution and diversity of insular ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roura-Pascual, Núria; Sanders, Nate; Hui, Cang

    2016-01-01

    Aim: To examine the relationship between island characteristics (area, distance to the nearest continent, climate and human population size) and ant species richness, as well as the factors underlying global geographical clustering of native and exotic ant composition on islands. Location: One...... hundred and two islands from 20 island groups around the world. Methods: We used spatial linear models that consider the spatial structure of islands to examine patterns of ant species richness. We also performed modularity analyses to identify clusters of islands hosting a similar suite of species...... and constructed conditional inference trees to assess the characteristics of islands that explain the formation of these island-ant groups. Results: Island area was the best predictor of ant species richness. However, distance to the nearest continent was an important predictor of native ant species richness...

  10. Contact toxicities of anuran skin alkaloids against the fire ant ( Solenopsis invicta)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weldon, Paul J.; Cardoza, Yasmin J.; Vander Meer, Robert K.; Hoffmann, W. Clint; Daly, John W.; Spande, Thomas F.

    2013-02-01

    Nearly 500 alkaloids, representing over 20 structural classes, have been identified from the skin of neotropical poison frogs (Dendrobatidae). These cutaneous compounds, which are derived from arthropod prey of the frogs, generally are believed to deter predators. We tested the red imported fire ant ( Solenopsis invicta) for toxicosis following contact with 20 alkaloids (12 structural classes) identified from dendrobatids or other anurans. Individual ants forced to contact the dried residues of 13 compounds exhibited convulsions and/or reduced ambulation. We estimated the cutaneous concentrations of several compounds based on their reported recoveries from skin extracts of free-ranging frogs and our measurements of the skin surface areas of museum specimens. Pumiliotoxin 251D exhibited contact toxicity below its estimated cutaneous concentration in the Ecuadorian frog, Epipedobates anthonyi, an observation consistent with the hypothesized role of this compound in anuran chemical defense. Our results and those of a previous study of mosquitoes indicate that some anuran skin compounds function defensively as contact toxins against arthropods, permeating their exoskeleton.

  11. Tightly congruent bursts of lineage and phenotypic diversification identified in a continental ant radiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Shauna L; Etienne, Rampal S; Powell, Scott

    2016-04-01

    Adaptive diversification is thought to be shaped by ecological opportunity. A prediction of this ecological process of diversification is that it should result in congruent bursts of lineage and phenotypic diversification, but few studies have found this expected association. Here, we study the relationship between rates of lineage diversification and body size evolution in the turtle ants, a diverse Neotropical clade. Using a near complete, time-calibrated phylogeny we investigated lineage diversification dynamics and body size disparity through model fitting analyses and estimation of per-lineage rates of cladogenesis and phenotypic evolution. We identify an exceptionally high degree of congruence between the high rates of lineage and body size diversification in a young clade undergoing renewed diversification in the ecologically distinct Chacoan biogeographical region of South America. It is likely that the region presented turtle ants with novel ecological opportunity, which facilitated a nested burst of diversification and phenotypic evolution within the group. Our results provide a compelling quantitative example of tight congruence between rates of lineage and phenotypic diversification, meeting the key predicted pattern of adaptive diversification shaped by ecological opportunity. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  12. Ants inhabiting myrmecophytic ferns regulate the distribution of lianas on emergent trees in a Bornean tropical rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Hiroshi O; Itioka, Takao

    2011-10-23

    Little is known about the spatial distribution of lianas on emergent trees in tropical rainforests and the factors affecting this distribution. The present study investigated the effects of an arboreal ant species, Crematogaster difformis, which forms myrmecophytic symbioses with two epiphytic ferns, Lecanopteris sp. and Platycerium sp., on the spatial distribution of lianas associated with emergent trees. Living lianas were placed onto trunk surfaces inside and outside the territories of the ants in the canopy, to examine their ability to remove them. The number of leaves pruned by the ants was significantly higher on lianas inside than outside their territories. The spatial overlap of the distributions of lianas and the two ferns on emergent trees were then examined. The frequency of liana colonization of tree crowns was found to be significantly lower on trees with than without ferns. Under the natural conditions, C. difformis workers were observed biting and pruning the lianas. These results suggest that C. difformis regulates the distribution of lianas on emergent trees.

  13. Antígona y la muerte

    OpenAIRE

    Pérez Alcolea, Simona Micaela

    2012-01-01

    La ponencia analiza la muerte de Antígona en la obra de Sófocles. Se propone que su suicidio es un acto consciente de voluntad preanunciado a lo largo de toda la obra y no una medida desesperada. Con ese fin se exploran las posibles motivaciones de Antígona para poner fin a su vida. En el análisis se proponen tres respuestas (no necesariamente excluyentes): -Antígona responde a la ética homérica. Está en lucha con Creón, y su suicidio es su golpe de gracia al poder del rey. -Antígona...

  14. Ant-plant symbioses: Stalking the chuyachaqui.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, D W; McKey, D

    1993-09-01

    According to Quechua-speaking peoples, orchard-like stands ('Supay Chacras') of two Amazonian ant-plant species are cultivated by the devil, or 'Chuyachaqui'. These "devil gardens" offer extreme examples of specializations that have evolved repeatedly in ant-plant associations. Numerous investigations are beginning to disclose the identity of the Chuyachaqui - the forces behind evolutionary specialization in ant-plant symbioses. These developments have important implications for our understanding of modes of coevolution in symbiotic mutualism, remarkable convergent similarities in the form of ant-plant symbioses on different continents, and pronounced intercontinental differences in the diversity and taxonomic composition of associates. Copyright © 1993. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. From Ant Trails to Pedestrian Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Schadschneider

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a model for the simulation of pedestrian dynamics inspired by the behaviour of ants in ant trails. Ants communicate by producing a pheromone that can be smelled by other ants. In this model, pedestrians produce a virtual pheromone that influences the motion of others. In this way all interactions are strictly local, and so even large crowds can be simulated very efficiently. Nevertheless, the model is able to reproduce the collective effects observed empirically, eg the formation of lanes in counterflow. As an application, we reproduce a surprising result found in experiments of evacuation from an aircraft.

  16. Microorganisms transported by ants induce changes in floral nectar composition of an ant-pollinated plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vega, Clara; Herrera, Carlos M

    2013-04-01

    Interactions between plants and ants abound in nature and have significant consequences for ecosystem functioning. Recently, it has been suggested that nectar-foraging ants transport microorganisms to flowers; more specifically, they transport yeasts, which can potentially consume sugars and alter nectar composition. Therefore, ants could indirectly change nectar sugar profile, an important floral feature involved in the plant-pollinator mutualism. But this novel role for ants has never been tested. We here investigate the effects of nectarivorous ants and their associated yeasts on the floral nectar sugar composition of an ant-pollinated plant. Differences in the nectar sugar composition of ant-excluded and ant-visited flowers were examined in 278 samples by using high-performance liquid-chromatography. The importance of the genetic identity and density of ant-transported basidiomycetous and ascomycetous yeasts on the variation of nectar traits was also evaluated. Ant visitation had significant effects on nectar sugar composition. The nectar of ant-visited flowers contained significantly more fructose, more glucose, and less sucrose than the nectar of ant-excluded flowers, but these effects were context dependent. Nectar changes were correlated with the density of yeast cells in nectar. The magnitude of the effects of ant-transported ascomycetes was much higher than that of basiodiomycetes. Ants and their associated yeasts induce changes in nectar sugar traits, reducing the chemical control of the plant over this important floral trait. The potential relevance of this new role for ants as indirect nectar modifiers is a rich topic for future research into the ecology of ant-flower interactions.

  17. Pollination and facultative ant-association in the African leopard ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The role of extra-floral nectar appears to be recruitment of foraging ants to tend the flowers resulting in a facultative ant-association between the orchid and gregarious ants. Four different ant species were found to forage on A. africana's inflorescences. Ant-tended inflorescences suffered significantly less damage by insects.

  18. Michael Jackson antes del caos

    OpenAIRE

    Juan Luciano Nieves

    2015-01-01

    Michael Jackson es un buen ejemplo de cómo utilizar las relaciones públicas para realizar o manipular la imagen de un producto a través de los medios de comunicación. Este ensayo pretende analizar los eventos que tuvieron lugar antes de que el cantante fuera acusado de abuso sexual contra un menor. Dichos eventos formaron parte de un plan muy bien delineado para disminuir los efectos de la inminente crisis que se acercaba. Este trabajo combina la crítica retórica de temas de fantasía con teor...

  19. Viaje Antártico

    OpenAIRE

    Lasa, Gorka

    2017-01-01

    Ah, qué grandiosa sensación esta de poder caminar por los eternos hielos y dejar que mi vista se pierda en el horizonte crepuscular de esta desolada región! Aquellas solitarias islas, lamentos blancos en la distancia, aquellos azules glaciares llorando su neblina de frío y siglos. Al llamado lejano, mi alma se ve arrastrada por los vientos australes. Mítico ensueño que genera en mi imaginación el gran continente antártico. Belleza misteriosa e intimidante de la vastedad casi mágica que envuel...

  20. A Review of Neotropical Myxomycetes (1828-2008

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lado, Carlos

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available A synthesis of the accumulated knowledge on myxomycetes recorded from the Neotropical region is presented in this paper. The biodiversity of these microorganisms in the Neotropics has been underestimated, and this paper shows that half the known species in the world have been recorded from the region. The monograph by M.L. Farr, for the series Flora Neotropica, published in 1976, has been taken as a baseline. The records produced after this date, some older obscure records, and data from recently published catalogues, monographs and other papers have been incorporated. The information is presented in a table format by species and countries. Species names are listed with synonyms that have been used in Neotropical literature and nomenclature has been updated. A comprehensive list of references by country has been included. A characteristic assemblage of myxomycetes from the Neotropics has been identified. The richness of myxobiota in different countries has been evaluated, and gaps in current information and unexplored areas have become evident from the results. Use of the compiled information to direct conservation plans, and to serve as a starting point to establish and develop future strategies for the study of myxomycetes in this area of the world, is discussed. The importance of prioritizing this research on microorganismal biodiversity, in view of accelerated habitat destruction, is stressed.Se realiza una síntesis sobre el conocimiento actual de los Myxomycetes en el Neotrópico. La biodiversidad de estos microorganismos en la región neotropical ha sido subestimada, pero este trabajo demuestra que la mitad de las especies conocidas en el mundo se han citado de esta región. La monografía que M.L. Farr publicó en 1976, para la serie Flora Neotrópica, se ha tomado como punto de partida para la realización de este trabajo. A ella se han incorporado las citas publicadas después de esta fecha, algunas más antiguas pero raras, y datos de

  1. Foliar uptake of nitrogen from ant fecal droplets: an overlooked service to ant plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pinkalski, Christian Alexander Stidsen; Jensen, Karl-Martin Vagn; Damgaard, Christian Frølund

    2018-01-01

    and subsequently deposited fecal droplets on the seedlings, coffee leaves showed increased levels of 15N and total N compared to control plants without ants. This was evident for both exposed leaves and leaves covered in plastic bags (i.e. not directly exposed to ants). Thus, N from ant excretions was absorbed...

  2. The neotropical species of Xanthopimpla Saussure (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez, Isrrael C; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E; Broad, Gavin R; Puhakka, Liisa; Castillo, Carol; Peña, Carlos; Pádua, Diego G

    2014-03-04

    Xanthopimpla Saussure, 1892 is one of the largest and best studied genera of the family Ichneumonidae. It is most species rich in the Oriental and Afrotropical regions with only a few species occurring in Central and South America. The present study reviews the Neotropical species of the genus including descriptions of four new species from Amazonia and Northeast South America. We define a new species group: the amazonica species-group, to accommodate the following five species: X. amazonica Gómez, Sääksjärvi & Veijalainen, X. guianensis Gómez & Sääksjärvi sp. n., X. jussilai Veijalainen, Sääksjärvi & Broad, X. pucallpensis Gómez & Sääksjärvi sp. n. and X. vidali Gómez sp. n. The aurita species-group, which had hitherto been regarded as the only species-group in the Neotropical region, is currently represented by five species: X. allpahuaya Gómez & Sääksjärvi sp. n., X. aurita Krieger, X. craspedoptera Krieger, X. rhabdomera Townes and X. spiloptera Krieger. The Andean species X. peruana Krieger is established as an unplaced species outside of the amazonica and aurita species-groups. A key to Neotropical species-groups and species of Xanthopimpla is provided. Xanthopimpla aurita is recorded for the first time from Ecuador and Colombia and its extensive distribution is discussed. Xanthopimpla amazonica, X. craspedoptera and X. jussilai are recorded for the first time from Brazil; X. amazonica is recorded for the first time from French Guiana; X. spiloptera is recorded for the first time from French Guiana and Peru, and X. rhabdomera is recorded for the first time from Peru. 

  3. Psittacid herpesviruses associated with mucosal papillomas in neotropical parrots

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Styles, Darrel K.; Tomaszewski, Elizabeth K.; Jaeger, Laurie A.; Phalen, David N.

    2004-01-01

    Mucosal papillomas are relatively common lesions in several species of captive neotropical parrots. They cause considerable morbidity and in some cases, result in mortality. Previous efforts to identify papillomavirus DNA and proteins in these lesions have been largely unsuccessful. In contrast, increasing evidence suggests that mucosal papillomas may contain psittacid herpesviruses (PsHVs). In this study, 41 papillomas from 30 neotropical parrots were examined by PCR with PsHV-specific primers. All 41 papillomas were found to contain PsHV DNA. This 100% prevalence of PsHV infection in the papilloma population was found to be significantly higher than PsHV infection prevalence observed in other surveys of captive parrots. PsHV genotypes 1, 2, and 3, but not 4 were found in these lesions. Psittacus erithacus papillomavirus DNA and finch papillomavirus DNA were not found in the papillomas. A papilloma from a hyacinth macaw (Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus) was found to contain cells that had immunoreactivity to antiserum made to the common antigenic region of human papillomavirus (HPV) L1 major capsid protein. However, four other mucosal papillomas were negative for this immunoreactivity, and negative control tissues from a parrot embryo showed a similar staining pattern to that seen in the cloaca papilloma of the hyacinth macaw, strongly suggesting that the staining seen in hyacinth macaw papilloma was nonspecific. Based on these findings, it was concluded that specific genotypes of PsHV play a direct role in the development of mucosal papillomas of neotropical parrots and there is no evidence to suggest the concurrent presence of a papillomavirus in these lesions

  4. Molecular Ecological Insights into Neotropical Bird-Tick Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Matthew J; Esser, Helen J; Loaiza, Jose R; Herre, Edward Allen; Aguilar, Celestino; Quintero, Diomedes; Alvarez, Eric; Bermingham, Eldredge

    2016-01-01

    In the tropics, ticks parasitize many classes of vertebrate hosts. However, because many tropical tick species are only identifiable in the adult stage, and these adults usually parasitize mammals, most attention on the ecology of tick-host interactions has focused on mammalian hosts. In contrast, immature Neotropical ticks are often found on wild birds, yet difficulties in identifying immatures hinder studies of birds' role in tropical tick ecology and tick-borne disease transmission. In Panama, we found immature ticks on 227 out of 3,498 individually-sampled birds representing 93 host species (24% of the bird species sampled, and 13% of the Panamanian land bird fauna). Tick parasitism rates did not vary with rainfall or temperature, but did vary significantly with several host ecological traits. Likewise, Neotropical-Nearctic migratory birds were significantly less likely to be infested than resident species. Using a molecular library developed from morphologically-identified adult ticks specifically for this study, we identified eleven tick species parasitizing birds, indicating that a substantial portion of the Panamanian avian species pool is parasitized by a diversity of tick species. Tick species that most commonly parasitized birds had the widest diversity of avian hosts, suggesting that immature tick species are opportunistic bird parasites. Although certain avian ecological traits are positively associated with parasitism, we found no evidence that individual tick species show specificity to particular avian host ecological traits. Finally, our data suggest that the four principal vectors of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the Neotropics rarely, if ever, parasitize Panamanian birds. However, other tick species that harbor newly-discovered rickettsial parasites of unknown pathogenicity are frequently found on these birds. Given our discovery of broad interaction between Panamanian tick and avian biodiversity, future work on tick ecology and the dynamics of

  5. Molecular Ecological Insights into Neotropical Bird-Tick Interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J Miller

    Full Text Available In the tropics, ticks parasitize many classes of vertebrate hosts. However, because many tropical tick species are only identifiable in the adult stage, and these adults usually parasitize mammals, most attention on the ecology of tick-host interactions has focused on mammalian hosts. In contrast, immature Neotropical ticks are often found on wild birds, yet difficulties in identifying immatures hinder studies of birds' role in tropical tick ecology and tick-borne disease transmission. In Panama, we found immature ticks on 227 out of 3,498 individually-sampled birds representing 93 host species (24% of the bird species sampled, and 13% of the Panamanian land bird fauna. Tick parasitism rates did not vary with rainfall or temperature, but did vary significantly with several host ecological traits. Likewise, Neotropical-Nearctic migratory birds were significantly less likely to be infested than resident species. Using a molecular library developed from morphologically-identified adult ticks specifically for this study, we identified eleven tick species parasitizing birds, indicating that a substantial portion of the Panamanian avian species pool is parasitized by a diversity of tick species. Tick species that most commonly parasitized birds had the widest diversity of avian hosts, suggesting that immature tick species are opportunistic bird parasites. Although certain avian ecological traits are positively associated with parasitism, we found no evidence that individual tick species show specificity to particular avian host ecological traits. Finally, our data suggest that the four principal vectors of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the Neotropics rarely, if ever, parasitize Panamanian birds. However, other tick species that harbor newly-discovered rickettsial parasites of unknown pathogenicity are frequently found on these birds. Given our discovery of broad interaction between Panamanian tick and avian biodiversity, future work on tick ecology

  6. Anti-depressant activity of Nyctanthes arbor-tristis in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sumeet Gupta

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The present study assesses the protective effect of Nyctanthes arbor-tristis (Nyctaginaceae extracts and in combination with fluoxetine on stress-induced depression in mice. Leaves were extracted using different solvents (petroleum ether, chloroform and hydroethanol and administered orally for 14 days. These extracts showed significant improvement in the mobility percentage but among these, hydroethanol extract showed better protective effect from day 1 to 14 in both forced swimming and tail suspension test model. Hydroethanol (100 mg/kg and chloroform (100 mg/kg extracts with fluoxetine showed synergistic effect when compared with fluoxetine treated group (10 mg/kg alone at day 7 and 14. Among monoamine levels only hydroethanol extract (400 mg/kg restored the 5-HT level near to level of fluoxetine-treated group. Hydroethanol extracts with two higher doses showed significant decrease in glucose and triglycerides levels. Clinically, it may useful as anti-depressant drug.

  7. Species arboreal as a bioindicator of the environmental pollution: Analysis by SR-TXRF

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sirito de Vives, Ana Elisa [Methodist University of Piracicaba, Rodovia Iracemapolis/Santa Barbara, km 01, Santa Barbara D' Oeste 13450-000, SP (Brazil)], E-mail: aesvives@unimep.br; Moreira, Silvana [State University of Campinas, Cidade Universitaria ' Zeferino Vaz' , Campinas 13083-970, SP (Brazil); Boscolo Brienza, Sandra Maria [Methodist University of Piracicaba, Rodovia do Acucar, Km 156, Piracicaba 13400-911, SP (Brazil); Medeiros, Jean Gabriel S.; Filho, Mario Tomazello [University of Sao Paulo, Av. Padua Dias, 11 Piracicaba 13418-900, SP (Brazil); Araujo Domingues Zucchi, Orgheda Luiza [University of Sao Paulo, Av. dos Bandeirantes, 390 Ribeirao Preto 14040-901, SP (Brazil); Nascimento Filho, Virgilio Franco do [University of Sao Paulo, Av. Centenario, 303 Piracicaba 13400-970, SP (Brazil); Barroso, Regina Cely [State University of Rio de Janeiro, Rua Sao Francisco Xavier, 524 Rio de Janeiro 20550-900, RJ (Brazil)

    2007-08-21

    This paper aims to study the environmental pollution in the tree development, in order to evaluate its use as bioindicator in urban and countrysides. The sample collection was carried out in Piracicaba city, Sao Paulo State, that presents high level of environmental contamination in water, soil and air, due to industrial activities, vehicle combustion, sugar-cane leaves burning in the harvesting, etc. The species Caesalpinia peltophoroides ('Sibipiruna') was selected because it is often used in urban arborization. Synchrotron radiation X-ray fluorescence technique (SR-TXRF) was employed to identify and quantify the elements and metals of nutritional and toxicological importance in the wood samples. The analysis was performed in the Brazilian Synchrotron Light Source Laboratory, using a white beam for excitation and an Si(Li) detector for X-ray detection. In several samples were quantified P, K, Ca, Ti, Fe, Sr, Ba and Pb elements.

  8. Expressed sequence tags from Atta laevigata and identification of candidate genes for the control of pest leaf-cutting ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodovalho, Cynara M; Ferro, Milene; Fonseca, Fernando Pp; Antonio, Erik A; Guilherme, Ivan R; Henrique-Silva, Flávio; Bacci, Maurício

    2011-06-17

    Leafcutters are the highest evolved within Neotropical ants in the tribe Attini and model systems for studying caste formation, labor division and symbiosis with microorganisms. Some species of leafcutters are agricultural pests controlled by chemicals which affect other animals and accumulate in the environment. Aiming to provide genetic basis for the study of leafcutters and for the development of more specific and environmentally friendly methods for the control of pest leafcutters, we generated expressed sequence tag data from Atta laevigata, one of the pest ants with broad geographic distribution in South America. The analysis of the expressed sequence tags allowed us to characterize 2,006 unique sequences in Atta laevigata. Sixteen of these genes had a high number of transcripts and are likely positively selected for high level of gene expression, being responsible for three basic biological functions: energy conservation through redox reactions in mitochondria; cytoskeleton and muscle structuring; regulation of gene expression and metabolism. Based on leafcutters lifestyle and reports of genes involved in key processes of other social insects, we identified 146 sequences potential targets for controlling pest leafcutters. The targets are responsible for antixenobiosis, development and longevity, immunity, resistance to pathogens, pheromone function, cell signaling, behavior, polysaccharide metabolism and arginine kynase activity. The generation and analysis of expressed sequence tags from Atta laevigata have provided important genetic basis for future studies on the biology of leaf-cutting ants and may contribute to the development of a more specific and environmentally friendly method for the control of agricultural pest leafcutters.

  9. Essential Roles for ARID1B in Dendritic Arborization and Spine Morphology of Developing Pyramidal Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ka, Minhan; Chopra, Divyan A.; Dravid, Shashank M.

    2016-01-01

    De novo truncating mutations in ARID1B, a chromatin-remodeling gene, cause Coffin–Siris syndrome, a developmental disorder characterized by intellectual disability and speech impairment; however, how the genetic elimination leads to cognitive dysfunction remains unknown. Thus, we investigated the neural functions of ARID1B during brain development. Here, we show that ARID1B regulates dendritic differentiation in the developing mouse brain. We knocked down ARID1B expression in mouse pyramidal neurons using in utero gene delivery methodologies. ARID1B knockdown suppressed dendritic arborization of cortical and hippocampal pyramidal neurons in mice. The abnormal development of dendrites accompanied a decrease in dendritic outgrowth into layer I. Furthermore, knockdown of ARID1B resulted in aberrant dendritic spines and synaptic transmission. Finally, ARID1B deficiency led to altered expression of c-Fos and Arc, and overexpression of these factors rescued abnormal differentiation induced by ARID1B knockdown. Our results demonstrate a novel role for ARID1B in neuronal differentiation and provide new insights into the origin of cognitive dysfunction associated with developmental intellectual disability. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Haploinsufficiency of ARID1B, a component of chromatin remodeling complex, causes intellectual disability. However, the role of ARID1B in brain development is unknown. Here, we demonstrate that ARID1B is required for neuronal differentiation in the developing brain, such as in dendritic arborization and synapse formation. Our findings suggest that ARID1B plays a critical role in the establishment of cognitive circuitry by regulating dendritic complexity. Thus, ARID1B deficiency may cause intellectual disability via abnormal brain wiring induced by the defective differentiation of cortical neurons. PMID:26937011

  10. Action potential propagation recorded from single axonal arbors using multi-electrode arrays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tovar, Kenneth R; Bridges, Daniel C; Wu, Bian; Randall, Connor; Audouard, Morgane; Jang, Jiwon; Hansma, Paul K; Kosik, Kenneth S

    2018-04-11

    We report the presence of co-occurring extracellular action potentials (eAPs) from cultured mouse hippocampal neurons among groups of planar electrodes on multi-electrode arrays (MEAs). The invariant sequences of eAPs among co-active electrode groups, repeated co-occurrences and short inter-electrode latencies are consistent with action potential propagation in unmyelinated axons. Repeated eAP co-detection by multiple electrodes was widespread in all our data records. Co-detection of eAPs confirms they result from the same neuron and allows these eAPs to be isolated from all other spikes independently of spike sorting algorithms. We averaged co-occurring events and revealed additional electrodes with eAPs that would otherwise be below detection threshold. We used these eAP cohorts to explore the temperature sensitivity of action potential propagation and the relationship between voltage-gated sodium channel density and propagation velocity. The sequence of eAPs among co-active electrodes 'fingerprints' neurons giving rise to these events and identifies them within neuronal ensembles. We used this property and the non-invasive nature of extracellular recording to monitor changes in excitability at multiple points in single axonal arbors simultaneously over several hours, demonstrating independence of axonal segments. Over several weeks, we recorded changes in inter-electrode propagation latencies and ongoing changes in excitability in different regions of single axonal arbors. Our work illustrates how repeated eAP co-occurrences can be used to extract physiological data from single axons with low electrode density MEAs. However, repeated eAP co-occurrences leads to over-sampling spikes from single neurons and thus can confound traditional spike-train analysis.

  11. The origin and distribution of neotropical species of Campylopus

    OpenAIRE

    Frahm, Jan-Peter

    1990-01-01

    Of the 65 species of Campylopus known from tropical America, 33 are andine in distribution, 16 are found only in SE Brazil, 8 have wide ranges through Central and South America, 3 species are disjunct in SE-North America and Brazil, 3 are confined to the Caribbean and one species belongs to the circum-pacific and one to the tethyan element. For different parts of the Neotropics, the composition of phytogeographical elements is calculated. For the first time, bryophyte distributions are compar...

  12. Hybrid chaotic ant swarm optimization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Yuying; Wen Qiaoyan; Li Lixiang; Peng Haipeng

    2009-01-01

    Chaotic ant swarm optimization (CASO) is a powerful chaos search algorithm that is used to find the global optimum solution in search space. However, the CASO algorithm has some disadvantages, such as lower solution precision and longer computational time, when solving complex optimization problems. To resolve these problems, an improved CASO, called hybrid chaotic swarm optimization (HCASO), is proposed in this paper. The new algorithm introduces preselection operator and discrete recombination operator into the CASO; meanwhile it replaces the best position found by own and its neighbors' ants with the best position found by preselection operator and discrete recombination operator in evolution equation. Through testing five benchmark functions with large dimensionality, the experimental results show the new method enhances the solution accuracy and stability greatly, as well as reduces the computational time and computer memory significantly when compared to the CASO. In addition, we observe the results can become better with swarm size increasing from the sensitivity study to swarm size. And we gain some relations between problem dimensions and swam size according to scalability study.

  13. Developmental shaping of dendritic arbors in Drosophila relies on tightly regulated intra-neuronal activity of protein kinase A (PKA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Copf, Tijana

    2014-09-15

    Dendrites develop morphologies characterized by multiple levels of complexity that involve neuron type specific dendritic length and particular spatial distribution. How this is developmentally regulated and in particular which signaling molecules are crucial in the process is still not understood. Using Drosophila class IV dendritic arborization (da) neurons we test in vivo the effects of cell-autonomous dose-dependent changes in the activity levels of the cAMP-dependent Protein Kinase A (PKA) on the formation of complex dendritic arbors. We find that genetic manipulations of the PKA activity levels affect profoundly the arbor complexity with strongest impact on distal branches. Both decreasing and increasing PKA activity result in a reduced complexity of the arbors, as reflected in decreased dendritic length and number of branching points, suggesting an inverted U-shape response to PKA. The phenotypes are accompanied by changes in organelle distribution: Golgi outposts and early endosomes in distal dendritic branches are reduced in PKA mutants. By using Rab5 dominant negative we find that PKA interacts genetically with the early endosomal pathway. We test if the possible relationship between PKA and organelles may be the result of phosphorylation of the microtubule motor dynein components or Rab5. We find that Drosophila cytoplasmic dynein components are direct PKA phosphorylation targets in vitro, but not in vivo, thus pointing to a different putative in vivo target. Our data argue that tightly controlled dose-dependent intra-neuronal PKA activity levels are critical in determining the dendritic arbor complexity, one of the possible ways being through the regulation of organelle distribution. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Amino acid sequence and biological characterization of BlatPLA₂, a non-toxic acidic phospholipase A₂ from the venom of the arboreal snake Bothriechis lateralis from Costa Rica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Laat, Marco; Fernández, Julián; Durban, Jordi; Villalobos, Eva; Camacho, Erika; Calvete, Juan J; Lomonte, Bruno

    2013-10-01

    Bothriechis is considered a monophyletic, basal genus of arboreal Neotropical pitvipers distributed across Middle America. The four species found in Costa Rica (B. lateralis, B. schlegeli, B. nigroviridis, B. supraciliaris) differ in their venom proteomic profiles, suggesting that different Bothriechis taxa have evolved diverse trophic strategies. In this study, we isolated a phospholipase A₂ (PLA₂) from B. lateralis venom, aiming at increasing our knowledge on the structural and functional characteristics of group II acidic PLA₂s, whose toxic actions are generally more restricted than those displayed by basic PLA₂s. The new acidic enzyme, BlatPLA₂, occurs as a monomer of 13,917 Da, in contrast to many basic group II PLA₂s which associate into dimers and often display myotoxicity and/or neurotoxicity. Its amino acid sequence of 122 residues predicts an isoelectric point of 4.7, and displays significant differences with previously characterized acidic PLA₂s, with which it shows a maximum sequence identity of 78%. BlatPLA₂ is catalytically active but appears to be devoid of major toxic activities, lacking intravenous or intracerebroventricular lethality, myotoxicity, in vitro anticoagulant activity, and platelet aggregation or inhibition effects. Phylogenetic relationships with similar group II enzymes suggest that BlatPLA₂ may represent a basal sequence to other acidic PLA₂s. Due to the metabolic cost of venom protein synthesis, the presence of a relatively abundant (9%) but non-toxic component is somewhat puzzling. Nevertheless, we hypothesize that BlatPLA₂ could have a role in the pre-digestion of prey, possibly having retained characteristics of ancestral PLA₂s without evolving towards potent toxicity. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Touchard

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants (Formicidae represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  16. Hey! A Fire Ant Stung Me!

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Videos for Educators Search English Español Hey! A Fire Ant Stung Me! KidsHealth / For Kids / Hey! A ... Me picó una roja o colorada! What's a Fire Ant? There are many different types of fire ...

  17. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  18. Ant aggression and evolutionary stability in plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualistic interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oña, L; Lachmann, M

    2011-03-01

    Mutualistic partners derive a benefit from their interaction, but this benefit can come at a cost. This is the case for plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualistic associations. In exchange for protection from herbivores provided by the resident ants, plants supply various kinds of resources or nests to the ants. Most ant-myrmecophyte mutualisms are horizontally transmitted, and therefore, partners share an interest in growth but not in reproduction. This lack of alignment in fitness interests between plants and ants drives a conflict between them: ants can attack pollinators that cross-fertilize the host plants. Using a mathematical model, we define a threshold in ant aggressiveness determining pollinator survival or elimination on the host plant. In our model we observed that, all else being equal, facultative interactions result in pollinator extinction for lower levels of ant aggressiveness than obligatory interactions. We propose that the capacity to discriminate pollinators from herbivores should not often evolve in ants, and when it does it will be when the plants exhibit limited dispersal in an environment that is not seed saturated so that each seed produced can effectively generate a new offspring or if ants acquire an extra benefit from pollination (e.g. if ants eat fruit). We suggest specific mutualism examples where these hypotheses can be tested empirically. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2010 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  19. AntStar: Enhancing Optimization Problems by Integrating an Ant System and A⁎ Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed Faisal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Recently, nature-inspired techniques have become valuable to many intelligent systems in different fields of technology and science. Among these techniques, Ant Systems (AS have become a valuable technique for intelligent systems in different fields. AS is a computational system inspired by the foraging behavior of ants and intended to solve practical optimization problems. In this paper, we introduce the AntStar algorithm, which is swarm intelligence based. AntStar enhances the optimization and performance of an AS by integrating the AS and A⁎ algorithm. Applying the AntStar algorithm to the single-source shortest-path problem has been done to ensure the efficiency of the proposed AntStar algorithm. The experimental result of the proposed algorithm illustrated the robustness and accuracy of the AntStar algorithm.

  20. Cryptococcus neoformans carried by Odontomachus bauri ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Santos de Jesus

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Cryptococcus neoformans is the most common causative agent of cryptococcosis worldwide. Although this fungus has been isolated from a variety of organic substrates, several studies suggest that hollow trees constitute an important natural niche for C. neoformans. A previously surveyed hollow of a living pink shower tree (Cassia grandis positive for C. neoformans in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was chosen for further investigation. Odontomachus bauri ants (trap-jaw ants found inside the hollow were collected for evaluation as possible carriers of Cryptococcus spp. Two out of 10 ants were found to carry phenoloxidase-positive colonies identified as C. neoformans molecular types VNI and VNII. The ants may have acted as a mechanical vector of C. neoformans and possibly contributed to the dispersal of the fungi from one substrate to another. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the association of C. neoformans with ants of the genus Odontomachus.

  1. Recurrence analysis of ant activity patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Marcel Neves

    Full Text Available In this study, we used recurrence quantification analysis (RQA and recurrence plots (RPs to compare the movement activity of individual workers of three ant species, as well as a gregarious beetle species. RQA and RPs quantify the number and duration of recurrences of a dynamical system, including a detailed quantification of signals that could be stochastic, deterministic, or both. First, we found substantial differences between the activity dynamics of beetles and ants, with the results suggesting that the beetles have quasi-periodic dynamics and the ants do not. Second, workers from different ant species varied with respect to their dynamics, presenting degrees of predictability as well as stochastic signals. Finally, differences were found among minor and major caste of the same (dimorphic ant species. Our results underscore the potential of RQA and RPs in the analysis of complex behavioral patterns, as well as in general inferences on animal behavior and other biological phenomena.

  2. Ants defend aphids against lethal disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Charlotte; Agrawal, Anurag A.; Hajek, Ann E.

    2010-01-01

    Social insects defend their own colonies and some species also protect their mutualist partners. In mutualisms with aphids, ants typically feed on honeydew produced by aphids and, in turn guard and shelter aphid colonies from insect natural enemies. Here we report that Formica podzolica ants tending milkweed aphids, Aphis asclepiadis, protect aphid colonies from lethal fungal infections caused by an obligate aphid pathogen, Pandora neoaphidis. In field experiments, bodies of fungal-killed aphids were quickly removed from ant-tended aphid colonies. Ant workers were also able to detect infective conidia on the cuticle of living aphids and responded by either removing or grooming these aphids. Our results extend the long-standing view of ants as mutualists and protectors of aphids by demonstrating focused sanitizing and quarantining behaviour that may lead to reduced disease transmission in aphid colonies. PMID:19923138

  3. Neotropical peatland methane emissions along a vegetation and biogeochemical gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winton, R Scott; Flanagan, Neal; Richardson, Curtis J

    2017-01-01

    Tropical wetlands are thought to be the most important source of interannual variability in atmospheric methane (CH4) concentrations, yet sparse data prevents them from being incorporated into Earth system models. This problem is particularly pronounced in the neotropics where bottom-up models based on water table depth are incongruent with top-down inversion models suggesting unaccounted sinks or sources of CH4. The newly documented vast areas of peatlands in the Amazon basin may account for an important unrecognized CH4 source, but the hydrologic and biogeochemical controls of CH4 dynamics from these systems remain poorly understood. We studied three zones of a peatland in Madre de Dios, Peru, to test whether CH4 emissions and pore water concentrations varied with vegetation community, soil chemistry and proximity to groundwater sources. We found that the open-canopy herbaceous zone emitted roughly one-third as much CH4 as the Mauritia flexuosa palm-dominated areas (4.7 ± 0.9 and 14.0 ± 2.4 mg CH4 m-2 h-1, respectively). Emissions decreased with distance from groundwater discharge across the three sampling sites, and tracked changes in soil carbon chemistry, especially increased soil phenolics. Based on all available data, we calculate that neotropical peatlands contribute emissions of 43 ± 11.9 Tg CH4 y-1, however this estimate is subject to geographic bias and will need revision once additional studies are published.

  4. Neotropical peatland methane emissions along a vegetation and biogeochemical gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R Scott Winton

    Full Text Available Tropical wetlands are thought to be the most important source of interannual variability in atmospheric methane (CH4 concentrations, yet sparse data prevents them from being incorporated into Earth system models. This problem is particularly pronounced in the neotropics where bottom-up models based on water table depth are incongruent with top-down inversion models suggesting unaccounted sinks or sources of CH4. The newly documented vast areas of peatlands in the Amazon basin may account for an important unrecognized CH4 source, but the hydrologic and biogeochemical controls of CH4 dynamics from these systems remain poorly understood. We studied three zones of a peatland in Madre de Dios, Peru, to test whether CH4 emissions and pore water concentrations varied with vegetation community, soil chemistry and proximity to groundwater sources. We found that the open-canopy herbaceous zone emitted roughly one-third as much CH4 as the Mauritia flexuosa palm-dominated areas (4.7 ± 0.9 and 14.0 ± 2.4 mg CH4 m-2 h-1, respectively. Emissions decreased with distance from groundwater discharge across the three sampling sites, and tracked changes in soil carbon chemistry, especially increased soil phenolics. Based on all available data, we calculate that neotropical peatlands contribute emissions of 43 ± 11.9 Tg CH4 y-1, however this estimate is subject to geographic bias and will need revision once additional studies are published.

  5. Floral structure in the neotropical palm genus Chamaedorea (Arecoideae, Arecaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stauffer, Fred W.

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Male and female floral structure has been studied in 28 species of Chamaedorea, the largest palm genus present in the Neotropics. The taxa investigated represent all subgenera according to the most recent taxonomic revision of the group. Morphological, histological and cytological features that are known to be of importance for interactions with visiting insects were studied and their putative role in protecting the flowering parts assessed. The taxonomic distribution of selected characters is in some cases congruent with relationships inferred by recently published molecular studies within the group.Se ha estudiado la estructura de las flores masculinas y femeninas en 28 especies de Chamaedorea, el género de palmas con mayor número de especies en la región neotropical. Los táxones investigados representan a todos los subgéneros contemplados en la más reciente revisión taxonómica del grupo. Se han estudiado los caracteres morfológicos, histológicos y citológicos de mayor importancia en cuanto a la visita de insectos y se ha examinado su rol dentro de la protección de los órganos florales. La distribución taxonómica de caracteres seleccionados ha demostrado, en algunos casos, ser congruente con las relaciones inferidas por los más recientes estudios moleculares que incluyen al grupo.

  6. Essential Oils from Neotropical Piper Species and Their Biological Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Trindade, Rafaela; Alves, Nayara Sabrina; Figueiredo, Pablo Luís; Maia, José Guilherme S.; Setzer, William N.

    2017-01-01

    The Piper genus is the most representative of the Piperaceae reaching around 2000 species distributed in the pantropical region. In the Neotropics, its species are represented by herbs, shrubs, and lianas, which are used in traditional medicine to prepare teas and infusions. Its essential oils (EOs) present high yield and are chemically constituted by complex mixtures or the predominance of main volatile constituents. The chemical composition of Piper EOs displays interspecific or intraspecific variations, according to the site of collection or seasonality. The main volatile compounds identified in Piper EOs are monoterpenes hydrocarbons, oxygenated monoterpenoids, sesquiterpene hydrocarbons, oxygenated sesquiterpenoids and large amounts of phenylpropanoids. In this review, we are reporting the biological potential of Piper EOs from the Neotropical region. There are many reports of Piper EOs as antimicrobial agents (fungi and bacteria), antiprotozoal (Leishmania spp., Plasmodium spp., and Trypanosoma spp.), acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory and cytotoxic activity against different tumor cells lines (breast, leukemia, melanoma, gastric, among others). These studies can contribute to the rational and economic exploration of Piper species, once they have been identified as potent natural and alternative sources to treat human diseases. PMID:29240662

  7. Persistence of pollination mutualisms in the presence of ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yuanshi; Wang, Shikun

    2015-01-01

    This paper considers plant-pollinator-ant systems in which the plant-pollinator interaction is mutualistic but ants have both positive and negative effects on plants. The ants also interfere with pollinators by preventing them from accessing plants. While a Beddington-DeAngelis (BD) formula can describe the plant-pollinator interaction, the formula is extended in this paper to characterize the pollination mutualism under the ant interference. Then, a plant-pollinator-ant system with the extended BD functional response is discussed, and global dynamics of the model demonstrate the mechanisms by which pollination mutualism can persist in the presence of ants. When the ant interference is strong, it can result in extinction of pollinators. Moreover, if the ants depend on pollination mutualism for survival, the strong interference could drive pollinators into extinction, which consequently lead to extinction of the ants themselves. When the ant interference is weak, a cooperation between plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualisms could occur, which promotes survival of both ants and pollinators, especially in the case that ants (respectively, pollinators) cannot survive in the absence of pollinators (respectively, ants). Even when the level of ant interference remains invariant, varying ants' negative effect on plants can result in survival/extinction of both ants and pollinators. Therefore, our results provide an explanation for the persistence of pollination mutualism when there exist ants.

  8. Michael Jackson antes del caos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Luciano Nieves

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Michael Jackson es un buen ejemplo de cómo utilizar las relaciones públicas para realizar o manipular la imagen de un producto a través de los medios de comunicación. Este ensayo pretende analizar los eventos que tuvieron lugar antes de que el cantante fuera acusado de abuso sexual contra un menor. Dichos eventos formaron parte de un plan muy bien delineado para disminuir los efectos de la inminente crisis que se acercaba. Este trabajo combina la crítica retórica de temas de fantasía con teoría de comunicación.

  9. Individual Recognition in Ant Queens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    D'Ettorre, Patrizia; Heinze, Jürgen

    2005-01-01

    Personal relationships are the cornerstone of vertebrate societies, but insect societies are either too large for individual recognition, or their members were assumed to lack the necessary cognitive abilities 1 and 2 . This paradigm has been challenged by the recent discovery that paper wasps...... recognize each other's unique facial color patterns [3] . Individual recognition is advantageous when dominance hierarchies control the partitioning of work and reproduction 2 and 4 . Here, we show that unrelated founding queens of the ant Pachycondyla villosa use chemical cues to recognize each other...... individually. Aggression was significantly lower in pairs of queens that had previously interacted than in pairs with similar social history but no experience with one another. Moreover, subordinates discriminated familiar and unfamiliar dominants in choice experiments in which physical contact, but not odor...

  10. FDTD-ANT User Manual

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, Martin L.

    1995-01-01

    This manual explains the theory and operation of the finite-difference time domain code FDTD-ANT developed by Analex Corporation at the NASA Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. This code can be used for solving electromagnetic problems that are electrically small or medium (on the order of 1 to 50 cubic wavelengths). Calculated parameters include transmission line impedance, relative effective permittivity, antenna input impedance, and far-field patterns in both the time and frequency domains. The maximum problem size may be adjusted according to the computer used. This code has been run on the DEC VAX and 486 PC's and on workstations such as the Sun Sparc and the IBM RS/6000.

  11. Further revisionary studies on the ant genus Megalomyrmex Forel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Solenopsidini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Roberto F. Brandão

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available I hereby revise, for the second time, the primarily Neotropical solenopsidine ant genus Megalomyrmex, describing M. wettereri n. sp., of the Silvestrii group, based on workers and gynes. Megalomyrmex latreillei Forel is synonymyzed under M. foreli Emery. The gyne of M. poatan is described and that of M. wallacei redescribed; males of M. acauna, M. incisus and M. wallacei are described. New locality records are given for M. ayri, M. cupecuara, M. goeldii, M. iheringi, M. modestus, and M. wallacei (Modestus group; M. acauna, M. balzani, M. cyendyra, M. emeryi, M. foreli, M. glaesarius, M. leoninus, M. staudingeri, and M. timbira (Leoninus group; M. poatan, M. silvestrii, and M. symmetochus (Silvestrii group, and M. drift, M. incisus, M. myops and M. pusillus (Incisus group. New biological data are recorded for M. acauna, M. goeldii, and M. wallacei. Comments are made for M. bidentatus, M. miri and M. mondabora.Reviso, pela segunda vez, o gênero neotropical de formigas Megalomyrmex Forel (Myrmicinae: Solenopsidini, descrevendo M. wettereri n. sp. do grupo Silvestrii com base em operárias e gines (rainhas. Megalomyrmex latreillei Forel é sinonimizada sob M. foreli Emery. A gine de M. poatan é descrita e a de M. wallacei é redescrita; os machos de M. acauna, M. incisus e M. wallacei são descritos. Novos registros de localidade são apresentados para M. ayri, M. cupecuara, M. goeldii, M. iheringi, M. modestus, e M. wallacei (grupo Modestus; M. acauna, M. balzani, M. cyendyra, M. emeryi, M. foreli, M. glaesarius, M. leoninus, M. staudingeri, e M. timbira (grupo Leoninus; M. poatan, M. silvestrii, e M. symmetochus (grupo Silvestrii, e M. drift, M. incisus, M. myops e M. pusillus (grupo Incisus. Novos dados biológicos são apresentados para M. acauna, M. goeldii, e M. wallacei e outros comentários são apresentados para M. bidentatus, M. miri e M. mondabora.

  12. Proteomic analysis of venom variability and ontogeny across the arboreal palm-pitvipers (genus Bothriechis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Sasa, Mahmood; Acevedo, Manuel E; Dwyer, Quetzal; Durban, Jordi; Pérez, Alicia; Rodriguez, Yania; Lomonte, Bruno; Calvete, Juan J

    2017-01-30

    Bothriechis is a genus of eleven currently recognized slender and arboreal venomous snakes, commonly called palm-pitvipers that range from southern Mexico to northern South America. Despite dietary studies suggesting that palm-pitvipers are generalists with an ontogenetic shift toward endothermic prey, venom proteomic analyses have revealed remarkable divergence between the venoms of the Costa Rican species, B. lateralis, B. schlegelii, B. supraciliaris, and B. nigroviridis. To achieve a more complete picture of the venomic landscape across Bothriechis, the venom proteomes of biodiversity of the northern Middle American highland palm-pitvipers, B. thalassinus, B. aurifer, and B. bicolor from Guatemala, B. marchi from Honduras, and neonate Costa Rican B. lateralis and B. schlegelii, were investigated. B. thalassinus and B. aurifer venoms are comprised by similar toxin arsenals dominated by SVMPs (33-39% of the venom proteome), CTLs (11-16%), BPP-like molecules (10-13%), and CRISPs (5-10%), and are characterized by the absence of PLA 2 proteins. Conversely, the predominant (35%) components of B. bicolor are D49-PLA 2 molecules. The venom proteome of B. marchi is similar to B. aurifer and B. thalassinus in that it is rich in SVMPs and BPPs, but also contains appreciable amounts (14.3%) of PLA 2 s. The major toxin family found in the venoms of both neonate B. lateralis and B. schlegelii, is serine proteinase (SVSP), comprising about 20% of their toxin arsenals. The venom of neonate B. schlegelii is the only palm-pitviper venom where relative high amounts of Kunitz-type (6.3%) and γPLA 2 (5.2%) inhibitors have been identified. Despite notable differences between their proteomes, neonate venoms are more similar to each other than to adults of their respective species. However, the ontogenetic changes taking place in the venom of B. lateralis strongly differ from those that occur in the venom of B. schlegelii. Thus, the ontogenetic change in B. lateralis produces a SVMP

  13. Collective search by ants in microgravity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie M. Countryman

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The problem of collective search is a tradeoff between searching thoroughly and covering as much area as possible. This tradeoff depends on the density of searchers. Solutions to the problem of collective search are currently of much interest in robotics and in the study of distributed algorithms, for example to design ways that without central control robots can use local information to perform search and rescue operations. Ant colonies operate without central control. Because they can perceive only local, mostly chemical and tactile cues, they must search collectively to find resources and to monitor the colony's environment. Examining how ants in diverse environments solve the problem of collective search can elucidate how evolution has led to diverse forms of collective behavior. An experiment on the International Space Station in January 2014 examined how ants (Tetramorium caespitum perform collective search in microgravity. In the ISS experiment, the ants explored a small arena in which a barrier was lowered to increase the area and thus lower ant density. In microgravity, relative to ground controls, ants explored the area less thoroughly and took more convoluted paths. It appears that the difficulty of holding on to the surface interfered with the ants’ ability to search collectively. Ants frequently lost contact with the surface, but showed a remarkable ability to regain contact with the surface.

  14. Pheromone disruption of Argentine ant trail integrity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suckling, D.M.; Peck, R.W.; Manning, L.M.; Stringer, L.D.; Cappadonna, J.; El-Sayed, A. M.

    2008-01-01

    Disruption of Argentine ant trail following and reduced ability to forage (measured by bait location success) was achieved after presentation of an oversupply of trail pheromone, (Z)-9-hexadecenal. Experiments tested single pheromone point sources and dispersion of a formulation in small field plots. Ant walking behavior was recorded and digitized by using video tracking, before and after presentation of trail pheromone. Ants showed changes in three parameters within seconds of treatment: (1) Ants on trails normally showed a unimodal frequency distribution of walking track angles, but this pattern disappeared after presentation of the trail pheromone; (2) ants showed initial high trail integrity on a range of untreated substrates from painted walls to wooden or concrete floors, but this was significantly reduced following presentation of a point source of pheromone; (3) the number of ants in the pheromone-treated area increased over time, as recruitment apparently exceeded departures. To test trail disruption in small outdoor plots, the trail pheromone was formulated with carnuba wax-coated quartz laboratory sand (1 g quartz sand/0.2 g wax/1 mg pheromone). The pheromone formulation, with a half-life of 30 h, was applied by rotary spreader at four rates (0, 2.5, 7.5, and 25 mg pheromone/m2) to 1- and 4-m2 plots in Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. Ant counts at bait cards in treated plots were significantly reduced compared to controls on the day of treatment, and there was a significant reduction in ant foraging for 2 days. These results show that trail pheromone disruption of Argentine ants is possible, but a much more durable formulation is needed before nest-level impacts can be expected. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  15. Rove beetles (Coleoptera Staphylilnidae) in neotropical riverine landscapes: characterising their distribution.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gutierrez Chacon, C.; Del Carmen Zuniga, M.; van Bodegom, P.M.; Chara, J.; Giraldo, L.M.

    2009-01-01

    1. The diversity and ecology of Staphylinidae in the Neotropical region has been poorly investigated, especially in riverine landscapes where these beetles are among the dominant organisms. Therefore, the relation between the occurrence of Staphylinidae and environmental variables was investigated

  16. Construction of arboreal nests by brown-nosed coatis, Nasua nasua (Carnivora: Procyonidae in the Brazilian Pantanal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie Olifiers

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The construction of arboreal nests is rare among mammals in the order Carnivora. However, coatis (Procyonidae: Nasua Storr, 1780 build arboreal nests that are used for resting or birthing. Here we describe Nasua nasua (Linnaeus, 1766 nests located during a telemetry study of coatis in the Brazilian Pantanal. Coati nests were all "bird-like", that is, open nests having a semispherical shape. Nests were constructed of twigs, branches, and lianas sometimes interlaced with leaves. Nest volume was 30-50 cm³ and average nest height was approximately 9.5 m. Nests were found in open "cerrado" vegetation, along forest edges, or in interior "cordilheiras" forest. The reasons why coatis build such nests are unclear, but may relate to inter or intraspecific competition for nesting sites, litter size, thermoregulation, and predation avoidance.

  17. The function of stilt roots in the growth strategy of Socratea exorrhiza (Arecaceae at two neotropical sites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory R Goldsmith

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Arboreal palms have developed a variety of structural root modifications and systems to adapt to the harsh abiotic conditions of tropical rain forests. Stilt roots have been proposed to serve a number of functions including the facilitation of rapid vertical growth to the canopy and enhanced mechanical stability. To examine whether stilt roots provide these functions, we compared stilt root characteristics of the neotropical palm tree Socratea exorrhiza on sloped (>20º and flat locations at two lowland neotropical sites. S. exorrhiza (n=80 trees did not demonstrate differences in number of roots, vertical stilt root height, root cone circumference, root cone volume, or location of roots as related to slope. However, we found positive relationships between allocation to vertical growth and stilt root architecture including root cone circumference, number of roots, and root cone volume. Accordingly, stilt roots may allow S. exorrhiza to increase height and maintain mechanical stability without having to concurrently invest in increased stem diameter and underground root structure. This strategy likely increases the species ability to rapidly exploit light gaps as compared to non-stilt root palms and may also enhance survival as mature trees approach the theoretical limits of their mechanical stability. Rev. Biol. Trop. 55 (3-4: 787-793. Epub 2007 December, 28.Comparamos características físicas de raíces aéreas de la palmera Socratea exorrhiza en sitios inclinados (pendiente>20º y sitios planos, en dos lugares neotropicales. S. exorrhiza (n=80 árboles no muestra diferencias en el número de raíces, la altura vertical de las raíces, la circunferencia y la masa del cono de las raíces, o la posición de las raíces en los sitios con pendiente. Encontramos relaciones positivas entre el crecimiento vertical y la arquitectura de las raíces aéreas, incluso entre el número de raíces, la circunferencia del cono de las raíces, y la masa del

  18. Morphological variability and distribution of the exotic Asian Mesocyclops thermocyclopoides (Copepoda: Cyclopoida: in the Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Suárez-Morales

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available From a series of biological samples collected from different freshwater environments in Costa Rica, Central America, the exotic Asian cyclopoid Mesocyclops thermocyclopoides Harada, 1931 was identified. We analyzed the morphology and appendage ornamentation of different Neotropical populations of this species, including specimens from Honduras, southeastern Mexico, and Costa Rica. We also examined Asian specimens from Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand, and performed a comparison of the Neotropical and Asian populations including a Principal Component Analysis (PCA. The Neotropical and Asian specimens show subtle morphological variations in the antennules, antennae, mandibles, swimming legs 1-4, and fifth legs. Some characters in the Neotropical group appear to diverge from the Asian pattern and the PCA indicated that intercontinental populations of M. thermocyclopoides are far from being homogeneous. These intra-specific differences are described to expand the known morphological range of this species and to provide the first comparative analysis of an exotic copepod in the Americas. Our analysis suggests that the geographic isolation of the American populations and the subtle morphological divergences with respect to the Asian patterns could be related to speciation processes in the Neotropical region, but also intra-Asian differences are reported. In the Neotropical region this species appears to be restricted to southeastern Mexico, Central America, and one Caribbean island; its potential as biological control of mosquito might enhance its spread in the region.

  19. Body size diversity and frequency distributions of Neotropical cichlid fishes (Cichliformes: Cichlidae: Cichlinae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah E Steele

    Full Text Available Body size is an important correlate of life history, ecology and distribution of species. Despite this, very little is known about body size evolution in fishes, particularly freshwater fishes of the Neotropics where species and body size diversity are relatively high. Phylogenetic history and body size data were used to explore body size frequency distributions in Neotropical cichlids, a broadly distributed and ecologically diverse group of fishes that is highly representative of body size diversity in Neotropical freshwater fishes. We test for divergence, phylogenetic autocorrelation and among-clade partitioning of body size space. Neotropical cichlids show low phylogenetic autocorrelation and divergence within and among taxonomic levels. Three distinct regions of body size space were identified from body size frequency distributions at various taxonomic levels corresponding to subclades of the most diverse tribe, Geophagini. These regions suggest that lineages may be evolving towards particular size optima that may be tied to specific ecological roles. The diversification of Geophagini appears to constrain the evolution of body size among other Neotropical cichlid lineages; non-Geophagini clades show lower species-richness in body size regions shared with Geophagini. Neotropical cichlid genera show less divergence and extreme body size than expected within and among tribes. Body size divergence among species may instead be present or linked to ecology at the community assembly scale.

  20. Comparison of carcass yields and meat quality between Baicheng-You chickens and Arbor Acres broilers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarsenbek, A; Wang, T; Zhao, J K; Jiang, W

    2013-10-01

    This study examined carcass yields and meat quality traits between Baicheng-You (BCY) chickens and Arbor Acres (AA) broilers. Thirty birds for each strain were selected and slaughtered at market ages of 49 d for AA broilers and 120 d for BCY. The results showed that BCY chickens had lower dressing (2.99%), semi-evisceration (5.10%), breast muscle (5.80%), and abdominal fat (1.55%) than those for AA broilers (P 0.05) difference of CP content in the same muscles of the 2 strains. The intramuscular fat (IMF) content was greater (P < 0.05) in thigh muscles of BCY chickens (6.80%) than those of AA broilers (4.28%), and inosine-5'-monophosphate (IMP) content was greater (P < 0.05) in breast and thigh muscles of BCY chickens (IMP: 3.79 and 1.47 mg/g) than same muscles in AA broilers (1.42 and 0.47 mg/g). In this study, muscle from 120-d-old BCY chickens was judged to have better quality traits with regard to cooking loss, drip loss, contents of IMF, and IMP compared with meat from 42-d-old AA broilers. At the same time, greater carcass yields, greater thigh pH24, and lower IMF content were observed in AA broilers compared with the BCY chickens.

  1. Selection of arboreal termitaria for nesting by cooperatively breeding Micronesian Kingfishers Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Haig, Susan M.

    2005-01-01

    Limited nest-site availability appears to be an important factor in the evolution of delayed dispersal and cooperative breeding in some cavity-nesting species. The cooperatively breeding Pohnpei subspecies of Micronesian Kingfisher Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii excavates nest cavities from the nests of arboreal termites Nasutitermes spp., or termitaria. In this first published description of nest-sites for this subspecies, we used surveys, remote sensing and radiotelemetry to evaluate the relationship between nest-site availability and co-operation. Results illustrate that nest termitaria are higher in the forest canopy, larger in volume and occur in areas with more contiguous canopy cover than unused termitaria. Nest termitaria were selected independently of the proximity to forest edges and territory boundaries, and we found no difference in characteristics of termitaria used by cooperative groups and breeding pairs. Logistic regression modelling indicated that termitaria with nest-like characteristics were not limited in abundance, suggesting that neither the prospects of inheriting nesting resources nor limited nest-site abundance are probable explanations for delayed dispersal in the Pohnpei subspecies of Micronesian Kingfisher.

  2. Genetic consequences of forest fragmentation for a highly specialized arboreal mammal--the edible dormouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Fietz

    Full Text Available Habitat loss and fragmentation represent the most serious extinction threats for many species and have been demonstrated to be especially detrimental for mammals. Particularly, highly specialized species with low dispersal abilities will encounter a high risk of extinction in fragmented landscapes. Here we studied the edible dormouse (Glis glis, a small arboreal mammal that is distributed throughout Central Europe, where forests are mostly fragmented at different spatial scales. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of habitat fragmentation on genetic population structures using the example of edible dormouse populations inhabiting forest fragments in south western Germany. We genotyped 380 adult individuals captured between 2001 and 2009 in four different forest fragments and one large continuous forest using 14 species-specific microsatellites. We hypothesised, that populations in small forest patches have a lower genetic diversity and are more isolated compared to populations living in continuous forests. In accordance with our expectations we found that dormice inhabiting forest fragments were isolated from each other. Furthermore, their genetic population structure was more unstable over the study period than in the large continuous forest. Even though we could not detect lower genetic variability within individuals inhabiting forest fragments, strong genetic isolation and an overall high risk to mate with close relatives might be precursors to a reduced genetic variability and the onset of inbreeding depression. Results of this study highlight that connectivity among habitat fragments can already be strongly hampered before genetic erosion within small and isolated populations becomes evident.

  3. Guerrerostrongylus marginalis n. sp. (Trichostrongyloidea: Heligmonellidae from the Guianan arboreal mouse (Oecomys auyantepui from French Guiana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weirich Jessica M.

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the number and arrangement of cuticular ridges and configuration of the dorsal ray, nematode specimens collected from the small intestine of eight Guianan arboreal mice, Oecomys auyantepui (Rodentia: Sigmodontinae, in French Guiana are herein described and characterized. Guerrerostrongylus marginalis n. sp. (Heligmosomoidea: Heligmonellidae shows a synlophe consisting of more than 40 ridges and a unique bursal arrangement with ray 8 (externo-dorsal extending to the edge of the bursal margin, and appearing more prominent than the dorsal ray. This bursal arrangement is common in members of Hassalstrongylus Durette-Desset, 1971, but uncommon in the other four species in Guerrerostrongylus Sutton & Durette-Desset, 1991. The placement of the new species in Guerrerostrongylus is based on the number and nature of cuticular ridges and the ray arrangement and symmetry of the caudal bursa. Diagnostic characteristics of Guerrerostrongylus marginalis n. sp. include the length of ray 8 relative to bursal margin, the relative size of the spicules and vestibule, and the number of eggs in the uterus. We propose an amendment to the generic diagnosis of Guerrerostrongylus to modify the characters of the long rays 6 (postero-lateral, rays 8 (externo-dorsal, and dorsal ray as diagnostic, since at least ray 6 appears to be short in two different species in the genus, namely G. ulysi Digiani, Notarnicola & Navone, 2012 and G. marginalis n. sp.

  4. Search behavior of arboreal insectivorous migrants at gulf coast stopover sites in spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chao-Chieh; Barrow, W.C.; Ouchley, K.; Hamilton, R.B.

    2011-01-01

    Search behavior of arboreal insectivorous migrants was studied at three stopover sites along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico during spring migrations, 1993–1995. We examined if search behavior was affected by phylogeny, or by environmental factors. A sequence of search movements (hop, flutter, or flight) in a foraging bout was recorded for each migrant encountered. Search rate, frequency, and distance of movements were calculated for each species. Search rate was positively correlated with proportion of hop, but negatively correlated to flight distance. Hop distance was positively correlated to tarsus length, as was flight distance to wing length for the 31 species of migrants. Cluster analysis indicated closely related species generally have similar foraging modes, which range from “sit-and-wait” of flycatchers to “widely foraging” of warblers. Migrants tended to use more hops in dense vegetation, but more flights in areas with sparse vegetation. Migrants also used more flights when foraging in mixed-species flocks and during periods of high migrant density. Logistic models indicated warblers were more influenced by environmental factors than vireos, possibly because warblers are near-perch searchers and more affected by these factors.

  5. An arboreal spider protects its offspring by diving into the water of tank bromeliads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hénaut, Yann; Corbara, Bruno; Azémar, Frédéric; Céréghino, Régis; Dézerald, Olivier; Dejean, Alain

    2018-03-01

    Cupiennius salei (Ctenidae) individuals frequently live in association with tank bromeliads, including Aechmea bracteata, in Quintana Roo (Mexico). Whereas C. salei females without egg sacs hunt over their entire host plant, females carrying egg sacs settle above the A. bracteata reservoirs they have partially sealed with silk. There they avoid predators that use sight to detect their prey, as is known for many bird species. Furthermore, if a danger is more acute, these females dive with their egg sacs into the bromeliad reservoir. An experiment showed that this is not the case for males or females without egg sacs. In addition to the likely abundance of prey found therein, the potential of diving into the tank to protect offspring may explain the close association of this spider with bromeliads. These results show that, although arboreal, C. salei evolved a protective behavior using the water of tank bromeliads to protect offspring. Copyright © 2018 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  6. Thuja occidentalis (Arbor vitae: A Review of its Pharmaceutical, Pharmacological and Clinical Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belal Naser

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Arbor vitae (Thuja occidentalis L. is a native European tree widely used in homeopathy and evidence-based phytotherapy. Many reviews and monographs have been published on the herbal substance's description, mode of action and clinical use. However, no comprehensive evidence-based review is available. Therefore, our aim was to search MEDLINE databases and survey manufacturers for further details or unpublished data. This review presents the botany, ethnobotany and phytochemistry, especially the different contents of essential oil (Thujone in relation to different extraction procedures of this medicinal plant. Thuja's antiviral action and immunopharmacological potential, such as stimulatory and co-stimulatory effects on cytokine and antibody production and activation of macrophages and other immunocompetent cells, have been evaluated in numerous in vitro and in vivo investigations. Although no controlled trials have been conducted on Thuja occ alone, many clinical studies have been performed with a herbal medicinal product containing a special extract of Thuja occ and other immunostimulants, demonstrating its therapeutic efficacy and safety in respiratory tract infections.

  7. Foot shape in arboreal birds: two morphological patterns for the same pincer-like tool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abourachid, Anick; Fabre, Anne-Claire; Cornette, Raphaël; Höfling, Elizabeth

    2017-07-01

    The feet are the only contact between the body and the substrate in limbed animals and as such they provide a crucial interface between the animal and its environment. This is especially true for bipedal and arboreal species living in a complex three-dimensional environment that likely induces strong selection on foot morphology. In birds, foot morphology is highly variable, with different orientations of the toes, making it a good model for the study of the role of functional, developmental, and phylogenetic constraints in the evolution of phenotypic diversity. Our data on the proportions of the phalanges analyzed in a phylogenetic context show that two different morphological patterns exist that depend mainly on habitat and toe orientation. In the anisodactyl foot, the hallux is the only backward-oriented toe and is enlarged in climbing species and reduced in terrestrial ones. Moreover, a proximo-distal gradient in phalanx size is observed depending on the degree of terrestriality. In the two other cases (heterodactyl and zygodactyl) that have two toes that point backward, the hallux is rather small in contrast to the other backward-pointing toe, which is enlarged. The first pattern is convergent and common among tetrapods and follows rules of skeletal development. The second pattern is unique for the clade and under muscle-morphogenetic control. In all cases, the functional result is the same tool, a pincer-like foot. © 2017 Anatomical Society.

  8. Cardiovascular responses of semi-arboreal snakes to chronic, intermittent hypergravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lillywhite, H. B.; Ballard, R. E.; Hargens, A. R.

    1996-01-01

    Cardiovascular functions were studied in semi-arboreal rat snakes (Elaphe obsoleta) following long-term, intermittent exposure to +1.5 Gz (head-to-tail acceleration) on a centrifuge. Snakes were held in a nearly straight position within horizontal plastic tubes during periods of centrifugation. Centrifugal acceleration, therefore, subjected snakes to a linear force gradient with the maximal force being experienced at the tail. Compared to non-centrifuged controls, Gz-acclimated snakes showed greater increases of heart rate during head-up tilt or acceleration, greater sensitivity of arterial pressure to circulating catecholamines, higher blood levels of corticosterone, and higher blood ratios of prostaglandin F 2 alpha/prostaglandin E2. Cardiovascular tolerance to increased gravity during graded Gz acceleration was measured as the maximum (caudal) acceleration force at which carotid arterial blood flow became null. When such tolerances were adjusted for effects of body size and other continuous variables incorporated into an analysis of covariance, the difference between the adjusted mean values of control and acclimated snakes (2.37 and 2.84 Gz, respectively) corresponded closely to the 0.5 G difference between the acclimation G (1.5) and Earth gravity (1.0). As in other vertebrates, cardiovascular tolerance to Gz stress tended to be increased by acclimation, short body length, high arterial pressure, and comparatively large blood volume. Voluntary body movements were important for promoting carotid blood flow at the higher levels of Gz stress.

  9. Amazonian phylogeography: mtDNA sequence variation in arboreal echimyid rodents (Caviomorpha).

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, M N; Patton, J L

    1993-09-01

    Patterns of evolutionary relationships among haplotype clades of sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome b DNA gene are examined for five genera of arboreal rodents of the Caviomorph family Echimyidae from the Amazon Basin. Data are available for 798 bp of sequence from a total of 24 separate localities in Peru, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Brazil for Mesomys, Isothrix, Makalata, Dactylomys, and Echimys. Sequence divergence, corrected for multiple hits, is extensive, ranging from less than 1% for comparisons within populations of over 20% among geographic units within genera. Both the degree of differentiation and the geographic patterning of the variation suggest that more than one species composes the Amazonian distribution of the currently recognized Mesomys hispidus, Isothrix bistriata, Makalata didelphoides, and Dactylomys dactylinus. There is general concordance in the geographic range of haplotype clades for each of these taxa, and the overall level of differentiation within them is largely equivalent. These observations suggest that a common vicariant history underlies the respective diversification of each genus. However, estimated times of divergence based on the rate of third position transversion substitutions for the major clades within each genus typically range above 1 million years. Thus, allopatric isolation precipitating divergence must have been considerably earlier than the late Pleistocene forest fragmentation events commonly invoked for Amazonian biota.

  10. Evaluation Of The Advanced Operating System Of The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority : Driver And Dispatcher Perceptions Of AATA'S Advanced Operating System

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    In 1997, the Ann Arbor (Michigan) Transportation Authority began deploying advanced public transportation systems (APTS) technologies in its fixed route and paratransit operations. The project's concept is the integration of a range of such technolog...

  11. Evaluation Of The Advanced Operating System Of The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority : Cost Study : Before, During And After AOS Implementation (October 1996-May 1999)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    In 1997, the Ann Arbor (Michigan) Transportation Authority (AATA) began deploying advanced public transportation systems (APTS) technologies in its fixed route and paratransit operations. The project's concept is the integration of a range of such te...

  12. Evaluation Of The Advanced Operating System Of The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority : Transfer And On-Time Performance Study : Before And After AOS Implementation, October 1996 - May 1999

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    In 1997, the Ann Arbor (Michigan) Transportation Authority began deploying advanced public transportation systems (APTS) technologies in its fixed route and paratransit operations. The project's concept is the integration of a range of such technolog...

  13. What do myrmecophagous geckos eat when ants are not available ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Like other Pristurus species, P. samhaensis on Samha and P. sokotranus on Socotra were highly myrmecophagous (76.7% and 38.6% ants, respectively). However, ants were absent from the diet of P. samhaensis on Darsa. In contrast to the rich native ant fauna of the other islands, only one ant species was reported for ...

  14. Comparative phylogeography: concepts, methods and general patterns in neotropical birds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arbelaez Cortes, Enrique

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the patterns and processes involved in intraspecific lineages diversification in time and space is the aim of phylogeography. The comparison of those phylogeographic patterns among co-distributed species shows insights of a community history. Here I review the concepts and methodologies of comparative phylogeography, an active research field that has heterogeneous analytical methods. In order to present a framework for phylogeography in the neotropics, I comment the general phylogeographic patterns of the birds from this region. this review is based on more than 100 studies conducted during the last 25 years and indicate that despite different co-distributed species seem to share some points in their phylogeographic pattern they have idiosyncratic aspects, indicating an unique history for each one.

  15. Conservation challenges for the Austral and Neotropical America section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceballos, Gerardo; Vale, Mariana M; Bonacic, Cristian; Calvo-Alvarado, Julio; List, Rurik; Bynum, Nora; Medellín, Rodrigo A; Simonetti, Javier A; Rodríguez, Jon Paul

    2009-08-01

    The Austral and Neotropical America (ANA) section of the Society for Conservation Biology includes a vast territory with some of the largest relatively pristine ecosystems in the world. With more than 573 million people, the economic growth of the region still depends strongly on natural resource exploitation and still has high rates of environmental degradation and biodiversity loss. A survey among the ANA section membership, with more than 700 members, including most of the section's prominent ecologists and conservationists, indicates that lack of capacity building for conservation, corruption, and threats such as deforestation and illegal trade of species, are among the most urgent problems that need to be addressed to improve conservation in the region. There are, however, strong universities and ecology groups taking the lead in environmental research and conservation, a most important issue to enhance the ability of the region to solve conservation and development conflicts.

  16. Some Possible Cases of Escape Mimicry in Neotropical Butterflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinheiro, C E G; Freitas, A V L

    2014-10-01

    The possibility that escape or evasive mimicry evolved in butterflies and other prey insects in a similar fashion to classical Batesian and Müllerian mimicry has long been advanced in the literature. However, there is a general disagreement among lepidopterists and evolutionary biologists on whether or not escape mimicry exists, as well as in which mimicry rings this form of mimicry has evolved. Here, we review some purported cases of escape mimicry in Neotropical butterflies and suggest new mimicry rings involving several species of Archaeoprepona, Prepona, and Doxocopa (the "bright blue bands" ring) and species of Colobura and Hypna (the "creamy bands" ring) where the palatability of butterflies, their ability to escape predator attacks, geographic distribution, relative abundance, and co-occurrence in the same habitats strongly suggest that escape mimicry is involved. In addition, we also indicate other butterfly taxa whose similarities of coloration patterns could be due to escape mimicry and would constitute important case studies for future investigation.

  17. Ants as tools in sustainable agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    1. With an expanding human population placing increasing pressure on the environment, agriculture needs sustainable production that can match conventional methods. Integrated pest management (IPM) is more sustainable, but not necessarily as efficient as conventional non-sustainable measures. 2...... in multiple crops. Their efficiency is comparable to chemical pesticides or higher, while at lower costs. They provide a rare example of documented efficient conservation biological control. 3. Weaver ants share beneficial traits with almost 13 000 other ant species and are unlikely to be unique...... of agricultural systems, this review emphasizes the potential of managing ants to achieve sustainable pest management solutions. The synthesis suggests future directions and may catalyse a research agenda on the utilization of ants, not only against arthropod pests, but also against weeds and plant diseases...

  18. Kunstikriitik Ants Juske sai doktoriks / Neeme Korv

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Korv, Neeme, 1974-

    2003-01-01

    Tartu Kõrgema Kunstikooli rektor Ants Juske kaitses 7. veebruaril Tallinnas Kunstiakadeemias edukalt doktoriväitekirja, juhendajaks oli professor Boris Bernštein ning oponeerisid doktor Altti Kuusamo Soomest ja professor Peeter Tulviste

  19. Fungal enzymes in the attine ant symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Schiøtt, Morten; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    the more basal attine genera use substrates such as flowers, plant debris, small twigs, insect feces and insect carcasses. This diverse array of fungal substrates across the attine lineage implies that the symbiotic fungus needs different enzymes to break down the plant material that the ants provide...... or different efficiencies of enzyme function. Fungal enzymes that degrade plant cell walls may have functionally co-evolved with the ants in this scenario. We explore this hypothesis with direct measurements of enzyme activity in fungus gardens in 12 species across 8 genera spanning the entire phylogeny...... and diversity of life-styles within the attine clade. We find significant differences in enzyme activity between different genera and life-styles of the ants. How these findings relate to attine ant coevolution and crop optimization are discussed....

  20. Structure, richness and composition of arboreal plants in a cloud thinning forest of Tolima (Colombia)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campo Kurmen, Juan Manuel

    2010-01-01

    Structure, richness, and floristic composition of the woody elements of the selective logging forest of the Vereda Dantas, (Ibague, Tolima, Colombia), where studied in a 0.1 ha plot sampled for all individuals ≥2.5 cm dbh. the forest is characterized by scarcity of lianas and hemiepiphytic, absence of typical families of the Colombian cloud forests between 2000 and 2500 m (Araceae, Ericaceae, Myrtaceae, Meliaceae and Aquifoliaceae), and richness increment of the Sabiaceae and Euphorbiaceae. Compared to others cloud forest from the Colombian Andes and the Neotropic, it has, fewer individuals (237 individuals ≥2.5 cm dbh per 0.1 ha) and more large trees (39.7% of individuals ≥10 cm dbh per 0.1 ha). The forest has a lower woody species richness (75 species ≥2.5 cm dbh per 0.1 ha). Apparently, the effects of selective timber extraction on structure, richness, and floristic composition are decrease floristic richness and density of individuals, decrease of lianas density and richness, and more individuals of secondary species, likes: Hedyosmum goudotianum Slms-Laubach var. goudatianum, Miconia resima Naud, and Palicourea calophlebia Standl.

  1. Exotic ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Ohio

    OpenAIRE

    Ivanov,Kal

    2016-01-01

    The worldwide transfer of plants and animals outside their native ranges is an ever increasing problem for global biodiversity. Ants are no exception and many species have been transported to new locations often with profound negative impacts on local biota. The current study is based on data gathered since the publication of the “Ants of Ohio” in 2005. Here I expand on our knowledge of Ohio’s myrmecofauna by contributing new records, new distributional information and natural history notes. ...

  2. Improving Emergency Management by Modeling Ant Colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-03-01

    perform functions such as nursing the brood or maintaining the nest. The more mature workers will begin to travel outside the nest to perform foraging...small sized ants predominantly act in functional roles such as nurses or transport services within the nest. The larger sizes predominantly function...stages: the founding stage, the ergonomic stage, and the reproductive stage. The founding stage is marked by a queen ant successful mating and laying

  3. Extrafloral nectar fuels ant life in deserts

    OpenAIRE

    Aranda-Rickert, Adriana; Diez, Patricia; Marazzi, Brigitte

    2014-01-01

    Interactions mediated by extrafloral nectary (EFN)-bearing plants that reward ants with a sweet liquid secretion are well documented in temperate and tropical habitats. However, their distribution and abundance in deserts are poorly known. In this study, we test the predictions that biotic interactions between EFN plants and ants are abundant and common also in arid communities and that EFNs are only functional when new vegetative and reproductive structures are developing. In a seasonal dese...

  4. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adams, Rachelle Martha Marie; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A.

    2013-01-01

    guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit......The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated...... parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few...

  5. Toxic industrial deposit remediation by ant activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jilkova, Veronika; Frouz, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Toxic industrial deposits are often contaminated by heavy metals and the substrates have low pH values. In such systems, soil development is thus slowed down by high toxicity and acidic conditions which are unfavourable to soil fauna. Ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) are considered tolerant to heavy metal pollution and are known to increase organic matter content and microbial activity in their nests. Here, we focused on soil remediation caused by three ant species (Formica sanguinea, Lasius niger, and Tetramorium sp.) in an ore-washery sedimentation basin near Chvaletice (Czech Republic). Soil samples were taken from the centre of ant nests and from the nest surroundings (>3 m from nests). Samples were then analyzed for microbial activity and biomass and contents of organic matter and nutrients. As a result, ant species that most influenced soil properties was F. sanguinea as there were higher microbial activity and total nitrogen and ammonia contents in ant nests than in the surrounding soil. We expected such a result because F. sanguinea builds conspicuous large nests and is a carnivorous species that brings substantial amounts of nitrogen in insect prey to their nests. Effects of the other two ant species might be lower because of smaller nests and different feeding habits as they rely mainly on honeydew from aphids or on plant seeds that do not contain much nutrients.

  6. Congestion and communication in confined ant traffic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gravish, Nick; Gold, Gregory; Zangwill, Andrew; Goodisman, Michael A. D.; Goldman, Daniel I.

    2014-03-01

    Many social animals move and communicate within confined spaces. In subterranean fire ants Solenopsis invicta, mobility within crowded nest tunnels is important for resource and information transport. Within confined tunnels, communication and traffic flow are at odds: trafficking ants communicate through tactile interactions while stopped, yet ants that stop to communicate impose physical obstacles on the traffic. We monitor the bi-directional flow of fire ant workers in laboratory tunnels of varied diameter D. The persistence time of communicating ant aggregations, τ, increases approximately linearly with the number of participating ants, n. The sensitivity of traffic flow increases as D decreases and diverges at a minimum diameter, Dc. A cellular automata model incorporating minimal traffic features--excluded volume and communication duration--reproduces features of the experiment. From the model we identify a competition between information transfer and the need to maintain jam-free traffic flow. We show that by balancing information transfer and traffic flow demands, an optimum group strategy exists which maximizes information throughput. We acknowledge funding from NSF PoLS #0957659 and #PHY-1205878.

  7. Fire ants perpetually rebuild sinking towers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phonekeo, Sulisay; Mlot, Nathan; Monaenkova, Daria; Hu, David L.; Tovey, Craig

    2017-07-01

    In the aftermath of a flood, fire ants, Solenopsis invicta, cluster into temporary encampments. The encampments can contain hundreds of thousands of ants and reach over 30 ants high. How do ants build such tall structures without being crushed? In this combined experimental and theoretical study, we investigate the shape and rate of construction of ant towers around a central support. The towers are bell shaped, consistent with towers of constant strength such as the Eiffel tower, where each element bears an equal load. However, unlike the Eiffel tower, the ant tower is built through a process of trial and error, whereby failed portions avalanche until the final shape emerges. High-speed and novel X-ray videography reveal that the tower constantly sinks and is rebuilt, reminiscent of large multicellular systems such as human skin. We combine the behavioural rules that produce rafts on water with measurements of adhesion and attachment strength to model the rate of growth of the tower. The model correctly predicts that the growth rate decreases as the support diameter increases. This work may inspire the design of synthetic swarms capable of building in vertical layers.

  8. Changes in species diversity of arboreal spiders in Mexican coffee agroecosystems: untangling the web of local and landscape influences driving diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zachary Hajian-Forooshani

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Agricultural intensification is implicated as a major driver of global biodiversity loss. Local management and landscape scale factors both influence biodiversity in agricultural systems, but there are relatively few studies to date looking at how local and landscape scales influence biodiversity in tropical agroecosystems. Understanding what drives the diversity of groups of organisms such as spiders is important from a pragmatic point of view because of the important biocontrol services they offer to agriculture. Spiders in coffee are somewhat enigmatic because of their positive or lack of response to agricultural intensification. In this study, we provide the first analysis, to our knowledge, of the arboreal spiders in the shade trees of coffee plantations. In the Soconusco region of Chiapas, Mexico we sampled across 38 sites on 9 coffee plantations. Tree and canopy connectedness were found to positively influence overall arboreal spider richness and abundance. We found that different functional groups of spiders are responding to different local and landscape factors, but overall elevation was most important variable influencing arboreal spider diversity. Our study has practical management applications that suggest having shade grown coffee offers more suitable habitat for arboreal spiders due to a variety of the characteristics of the shade trees. Our results which show consistently more diverse arboreal spider communities in lower elevations are important in light of looming global climate change. As the range of suitable elevations for coffee cultivation shrinks promoting arboreal spider diversity will be important in sustaining the viability of coffee.

  9. Invasion of yellow crazy ant Anoplolepis gracilipes in a Seychelles UNESCO palm forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Kaiser-Bunbury

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The mature palm forest of the Vallée de Mai, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on the Seychelles island of Praslin, is a unique ecosystem containing many endemic species, including the iconic coco de mer palm Lodoicea maldivica. In 2009, the invasive yellow crazy ant Anoplolepis gracilipes was recorded for the first time within the palm forest, raising concern about its potential impacts on the endemic fauna. This research aimed: (1 to assess the current distribution and spread of A. gracilipes within the palm forest; (2 to identify environmental variables that are linked to A. gracilipes distribution; and (3 to compare endemic species richness and abundance in A. gracilipes invaded and uninvaded areas. Anoplolepis gracilipes was confined to the north-east of the site and remained almost stationary between April 2010 and December 2012, with isolated outbreaks into the forest. Infested areas had significantly higher temperature and humidity and lower canopy cover. Abundance and species richness of the endemic arboreal fauna were lower in the A. gracilipes invaded area. Molluscs were absent from the invaded area. The current restricted distribution of A. gracilipes in this ecosystem, combined with lower abundance of endemic fauna in the invaded area, highlight the need for further research to assess control measures and the possible role of biotic resistance to the invasion of the palm forest by A. gracilipes.

  10. Los Servicios de Inteligencia ante los retos de la Comunidad Internacional

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torres Muro, Federico

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available El título de mi contribución a este número de la revista Arbor, «Los Servicios de inteligencia ante los retos de la comunidad internacional", posiblemente debería completarse con la frase, para las que aquéllos deben tener respuesta. Me explico. Es obvio que la comunidad internacional tiene que afrontar retos como el hambre, la pobreza, el cambio climático, que no menciono en mi artículo ya que no entran dentro del ámbito de actuación de los servicios de inteligencia, aunque ningún analista cualificado los ignoraría. No obstante, he creído conveniente centrar mi descripción, necesariamente sucinta, del panorama actual de las relaciones internacionales en aquellos factores que entiendo afectan directamente a la seguridad internacional y, por tanto, a la tarea de los servicios de inteligencia.

  11. Comparative physical mapping of 18S rDNA in the karyotypes of six leafcutter ant species of the genera Atta and Acromyrmex (Formicidae: Myrmicinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, Gisele Amaro; Barros, Luísa Antônia Campos; de Aguiar, Hilton Jeferson Alves Cardoso; das Graças Pompolo, Silvia

    2017-10-01

    Leafcutter ants of the Atta and Acromyrmex genera are important plagues in different cultures. Cytogenetic data on chromosome number, morphology, and chromosomal banding pattern are only available for 17 species of leafcutter ants. Molecular cytogenetic data for the detection of ribosomal genes by the FISH technique are scarce, and only 15 Neotropical ant species have been studied. This study aimed to physically map the 18S ribosomal RNA genes (rDNA) of six leafcutter ants belonging to the genera Atta and Acromyrmex using FISH. The results were compared with data on the fluorochrome CMA 3 currently available for these species. All analyzed species presented the 18S rDNA on one pair of chromosomes. In Acromyrmex subterraneus molestans and Ac. aspersus, FISH signals were observed in the terminal region of the short arm of the largest subtelocentric pair, while in Atta bisphaerica, A. laevigata, and A. sexdens, FISH signals were observed in the interstitial region of the long arm of the fourth metacentric pair. In Acromyrmex striatus, 18S rDNA was located in the interstitial region of the second metacentric pair. The karyotypic formula for Ac. aspersus was 2n = 38 (8m + 10sm + 16st + 4a), representing the first report in this species. The observed 18S rDNA regions in A. laevigata, A. sexdens, A. bisphaerica, Ac. aspersus, and Ac. subterraneus molestans corresponded to the CMA 3 + bands, while in Ac. striatus, several GC-rich bands and one pair of 18S rDNA bands were observed. No differential bands were visible using the DAPI fluorochrome. Karyotype uniformity with previously studied Atta spp. was also observed at the level of molecular cytogenetics using 18S rDNA FISH. A difference in the size of the chromosomal pair carrying the 18S rDNA gene was observed in Ac. striatus (2n = 22) and Atta spp. (2n = 22) highlighting the dissimilarity between these species. The results from the present study contribute to the description of 18S rDNA clusters

  12. The distribution of weaver ant pheromones on host trees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2007-01-01

    The visible anal spots deposited by Oecophylla smaragdina ants have been suggested to deter ant prey, affect interspecific competition and facilitate mutualists and parasites in tracking down Oecophylla ants. I measured the density of anal spots on host trees with and without ants and tested for ...... to leaves. Also there was a positive correlation between spot density and the likelihood of being detected by ants. Anal spots may thus function as reliable cues to interacting species and be an important factor in shaping the community around Oecophylla colonies.......The visible anal spots deposited by Oecophylla smaragdina ants have been suggested to deter ant prey, affect interspecific competition and facilitate mutualists and parasites in tracking down Oecophylla ants. I measured the density of anal spots on host trees with and without ants and tested...... for correlations between spot density, ant activity and the likelihood of being detected by an ant. Spots were only found on trees with ants. On ant-trees, spots were distributed throughout the trees but with higher densities in areas with high ant activity and pheromone densities were higher on twigs compared...

  13. Fuzzy Rules for Ant Based Clustering Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amira Hamdi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides a new intelligent technique for semisupervised data clustering problem that combines the Ant System (AS algorithm with the fuzzy c-means (FCM clustering algorithm. Our proposed approach, called F-ASClass algorithm, is a distributed algorithm inspired by foraging behavior observed in ant colonyT. The ability of ants to find the shortest path forms the basis of our proposed approach. In the first step, several colonies of cooperating entities, called artificial ants, are used to find shortest paths in a complete graph that we called graph-data. The number of colonies used in F-ASClass is equal to the number of clusters in dataset. Hence, the partition matrix of dataset founded by artificial ants is given in the second step, to the fuzzy c-means technique in order to assign unclassified objects generated in the first step. The proposed approach is tested on artificial and real datasets, and its performance is compared with those of K-means, K-medoid, and FCM algorithms. Experimental section shows that F-ASClass performs better according to the error rate classification, accuracy, and separation index.

  14. Neotropical dry forest wildlife water hole use and management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Vaughan

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available Selected wildlife species diurnal use of a natural water hole (QD and an artificial water hole (AW were studied during 1990 dry season at Guanacaste Conservation Area, Costa Rica. In total, 919 individuals (six mammal and one game bird species consumed water from QD, while 713 individuals (four mammal species consumed water from AW. Estimated daily water consumption by selected wildlife species was 29.7 l at QD and 27.3 l at AW. Estimated 24-h water consumed by all wildlife species or evaporated was 44.6 l at QD and 41.1 l at AW. This resulted from summing: a water consumed by studied species, b estimated 24-hour water consumed by other wildlife (QD = 14.85 l, AW = 13.65 l and c daily water evaporation (QD = 0.04 l, AW = 0.10 l. During a 120-day dry season, AW required about 4 932 l of water from the park administration. Management implications for neotropical dry forest water holes are discussed.Se estudió el uso diurno de un ojo de agua natural (QD y otro artificial (AW a finales de la época seca de 1990 en el Area de Conservacion de Guanacaste, Costa Rica. En total 919 individuos (seis especies de mamíferos y una de ave cinegética consumieron agua de QD y 713 individuos (cuatro especies de mamíferos de AQ. Se estimó que en un dia, las especies de vida silvestre estudiados tomaron 29.7 l y 27.3 l de agua de QD y AW, respectivamente. El total de agua consumido o evaporado de cada ojo de agua durante 24-horas fue estimado en 44.6 l en QD y 41.1 l en AW, con base en: a agua bebida durante 12 h por las especies seleccionadas, b agua bebida por todos los otros individuos durante 24 h (QD = 14.85 l, AW = 13.65 l y c evaporación diaria (QD = 0.04 l, AW = 0.01 l. Para abastecer AW durante una epoca seca de 120 días, la administración del parque debe proveer 4 932 l de agua. Se discute las implicaciones de manejo en las regiones de bosque seco neotropical.

  15. Paleocene wind-dispersed fruits and seeds from Colombia and their implications for early Neotropical rainforests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herrera Fabiany

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Extant Neotropical rainforests are well known for their remarkable diversity of fruit and seed types. Biotic agents disperse most of these disseminules, whereas wind dispersal is less common. Although wind-dispersed fruits and seeds are greatly overshadowed in closed rainforests, many important families in the Neotropics (e.g., Bignoniaceae, Fabaceae, Malvaceae, Orchidaceae, Sapindaceae show numerous morphological adaptations for anemochory (i.e. wings, accessory hairs. Most of these living groups have high to moderate levels of plant diversity in the upper levels of the canopy. Little is known about the fossil record of wind-dispersed fruits and seeds in the Neotropics. Six new species of disseminules with varied adaptations for wind dispersal are documented here. These fossils, representing extinct genera of Ulmaceae, Malvaceae, and some uncertain families, indicate that wind-dispersed fruit and seed syndromes were already common in the Neotropics by the Paleocene, coinciding with the early development of multistratal rainforests. Although the major families known to include most of the wind-dispersed disseminules in extant rainforests are still missing from the Paleogene fossil record of South and Central America, the new fossils imply that anemochory was a relatively important product and/or mechanism of plant evolution and diversification in early Neotropical rainforests.

  16. Kin-informative recognition cues in ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nehring, Volker; Evison, Sophie E F; Santorelli, Lorenzo A

    2011-01-01

    behaviour is thought to be rare in one of the classic examples of cooperation--social insect colonies--because the colony-level costs of individual selfishness select against cues that would allow workers to recognize their closest relatives. In accord with this, previous studies of wasps and ants have...... found little or no kin information in recognition cues. Here, we test the hypothesis that social insects do not have kin-informative recognition cues by investigating the recognition cues and relatedness of workers from four colonies of the ant Acromyrmex octospinosus. Contrary to the theoretical...... prediction, we show that the cuticular hydrocarbons of ant workers in all four colonies are informative enough to allow full-sisters to be distinguished from half-sisters with a high accuracy. These results contradict the hypothesis of non-heritable recognition cues and suggest that there is more potential...

  17. Ant parasite queens revert to mating singly

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sumner, Seirian; Hughes, William Owen Hamar; Pedersen, Jes Søe

    2004-01-01

    quantified and they tend to be similar in related species. Here we compare the mating strategies of the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior and its recently derived social parasite Acromyrmex insinuator, which is also its closest relative 2 (see Fig. 1 ). We find that although the host queens mate with up......A parasitic ant has abandoned the multiple mating habit of the queens of its related host. Multiple mating (polyandry) is widespread among animal groups, particularly insects 1 . But the factors that maintain it and underlie its evolution are hard to verify because benefits and costs are not easily...... to a dozen different males, the social parasite mates only singly. This rapid and surprising reversion to single mating in a socially parasitic ant indicates that the costs of polyandry are probably specific to a free-living lifestyle....

  18. The worldwide expansion of the Argentine ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vogel, Valerie; Pedersen, Jes Søe; Giraud, Tatiana

    2010-01-01

    Aim The aim of this study was to determine the number of successful establishments of the invasive Argentine ant outside native range and to see whether introduced supercolonies have resulted from single or multiple introductions. We also compared the genetic diversity of native versus introduced...... supercolonies to assess the size of the propagules (i.e. the number of founding individuals) at the origin of the introduced supercolonies. Location Global. Methods We used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) markers and microsatellite loci to study 39 supercolonies of the Argentine ant Linepithema humile covering both......) and secondary introductions (from sites with established invasive supercolonies) were important in the global expansion of the Argentine ant. In combination with the similar social organization of colonies in the native and introduced range, this indicates that invasiveness did not evolve recently as a unique...

  19. Desert ants learn vibration and magnetic landmarks.

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    Cornelia Buehlmann

    Full Text Available The desert ants Cataglyphis navigate not only by path integration but also by using visual and olfactory landmarks to pinpoint the nest entrance. Here we show that Cataglyphis noda can additionally use magnetic and vibrational landmarks as nest-defining cues. The magnetic field may typically provide directional rather than positional information, and vibrational signals so far have been shown to be involved in social behavior. Thus it remains questionable if magnetic and vibration landmarks are usually provided by the ants' habitat as nest-defining cues. However, our results point to the flexibility of the ants' navigational system, which even makes use of cues that are probably most often sensed in a different context.

  20. Practice makes perfect: Performance optimisation in 'arboreal' parkour athletes illuminates the evolutionary ecology of great ape anatomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halsey, Lewis G; Coward, Samuel R L; Crompton, Robin H; Thorpe, Susannah K S

    2017-02-01

    An animal's size is central to its ecology, yet remarkably little is known about the selective pressures that drive this trait. A particularly compelling example is how ancestral apes evolved large body mass in such a physically and energetically challenging environment as the forest canopy, where weight-bearing branches and lianas are flexible, irregular and discontinuous, and the majority of preferred foods are situated on the most flexible branches at the periphery of tree crowns. To date the issue has been intractable due to a lack of relevant fossil material, the limited capacity of the fossil record to reconstruct an animal's behavioural ecology and the inability to measure energy consumption in freely moving apes. We studied the oxygen consumption of parkour athletes while they traversed an arboreal-like course as an elite model ape, to test the ecomorphological and behavioural mechanisms by which a large-bodied ape could optimize its energetic performance during tree-based locomotion. Our results show that familiarity with the arboreal-like course allowed the athletes to substantially reduce their energy expenditure. Furthermore, athletes with larger arm spans and shorter legs were particularly adept at finding energetic savings. Our results flesh out the scanty fossil record to offer evidence that long, strong arms, broad chests and a strong axial system, combined with the frequent use of uniform branch-to-branch arboreal pathways, were critical to off-setting the mechanical and energetic demands of large mass in ancestral apes. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. In vitro antioxidant evaluation and total phenolics of methanolic leaf extracts of Nyctanthes arbor-tristis L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael, J Savarimuthu; Kalirajan, A; Padmalatha, C; Singh, A J A Ranjit

    2013-09-01

    To investigate the in vitro antioxidant activity and total phenolic content of the methanolic leaf extract of Nyctanthes arbor-tristis L. (NA). The sample was tested using five in vitro antioxidant methods (1, 1-diphenyl-2-picryl hydrazine radical scavenging activity (DPPH), hydroxyl radical-scavenging activity (-OH), nitric oxide scavenging activity (NO), superoxide radical-scavenging activity, and total antioxidant activity) to evaluate the in vitro antioxidant potential of NA and the total phenolic content (Folin-Ciocalteu method). The extract showed good free radical scavenging property which was calculated as an IC50 value. IC50 (Half maximal inhibitory concentration) of the methanolic extract was found to be 57.93 μg·mL(-1) for DPPH, 98.61 μg·mL(-1) for -OH, 91.74 μg·mL(-1) for NO, and 196.07 μg·mL(-1) for superoxide radical scavenging activity. Total antioxidant capacity of the extract was found to be (1198 ± 24.05) mg ascorbic acid for the methanolic extract. Free radical scavenging activity observed in the extracts of NA showed a concentration-dependent reaction. The in vitro scavenging tested for free radicals was reported to be due to high phenolic content in the leaf extract. The leaf extract of NA showed the highest total phenolic content with a value of 78.48 ± 4.2 equivalent mg TAE/g (tannic acid equivalent). N. arbor-tristis leaf extract exhibited potent free radical scavenging activity. The finding suggests that N. arbor-tristis leaves could be a potential source of natural antioxidant. Copyright © 2013 China Pharmaceutical University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Effect of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and phosphate fertilization on initial growth of six arboreal species of cerrado

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    Kenia Alves Pereira Lacerda

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated the benefit of inoculation with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, Glomus clarum, for the initial growth of some native arboreal species of the Cerrado biome, namely gabiroba (Campomanesia cambessedeana, baru (Dipterix alata, jatobá (Hymenaea courbaril, ingá (Inga laurina, caroba (Jacaranda cuspidifolia and chichá (Sterculia striata, in unsterilized soil with low (0.02 mg L‑1 and high (0.2 mg L‑1 concentrations of P in the soil solution. Experiments were conducted in a greenhouse, using 1.5 kg vases, for up to 120 days. The experimental design for each arboreal species was completely randomized, with ten replicates in a 2x2 factorial design (inoculated and noninoculated seedlings, and two levels of phosphorus (P in the soil solution. Arboreal plants of the Cerrado biome showed increased mycorrhizal colonization from inoculation with Glomus clarum, except chichá, as this species showed a high indigenous colonization, not differing from the colonization promoted by inoculated fungi. Inoculation promoted increased growth in baru, gabiroba, ingá, caroba and chichá, increasing shoot dry matter (MSPA and root dry matter (MSR. In caroba, this effect was synergistic with application of P to the soil. Baru and jatobá showed increased dry matter with application of P to the soil only. The mycotrophy (mycorrhizal dependence of species and their response to inoculation and to phosphorus are discussed. In order to produce quality seedlings of caroba, gabiroba, chichá and ingá, combining inoculation with Glomus clarum and phosphate fertilization of the soil is recommended, while for jatobá and baru only the application of P to the soil is recommended.

  3. Ant-plants and fungi: a new threeway symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defossez, Emmanuel; Selosse, Marc-André; Dubois, Marie-Pierre; Mondolot, Laurence; Faccio, Antonella; Djieto-Lordon, Champlain; McKey, Doyle; Blatrix, Rumsaïs

    2009-06-01

    Symbioses between plants and fungi, fungi and ants, and ants and plants all play important roles in ecosystems. Symbioses involving all three partners appear to be rare. Here, we describe a novel tripartite symbiosis in which ants and a fungus inhabit domatia of an ant-plant, and present evidence that such interactions are widespread. We investigated 139 individuals of the African ant-plant Leonardoxa africana for occurrence of fungus. Behaviour of mutualist ants toward the fungus within domatia was observed using a video camera fitted with an endoscope. Fungi were identified by sequencing a fragment of their ribosomal DNA. Fungi were always present in domatia occupied by mutualist ants but never in domatia occupied by opportunistic or parasitic ants. Ants appear to favour the propagation, removal and maintenance of the fungus. Similar fungi were associated with other ant-plants in Cameroon. All belong to the ascomycete order Chaetothyriales; those from L. africana formed a monophyletic clade. These new plant-ant-fungus associations seem to be specific, as demonstrated within Leonardoxa and as suggested by fungal phyletic identities. Such tripartite associations are widespread in African ant-plants but have long been overlooked. Taking fungal partners into account will greatly enhance our understanding of symbiotic ant-plant mutualisms.

  4. Long-term carbon loss in fragmented Neotropical forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pütz, Sandro; Groeneveld, Jürgen; Henle, Klaus; Knogge, Christoph; Martensen, Alexandre Camargo; Metz, Markus; Metzger, Jean Paul; Ribeiro, Milton Cezar; de Paula, Mateus Dantas; Huth, Andreas

    2014-10-07

    Tropical forests play an important role in the global carbon cycle, as they store a large amount of carbon (C). Tropical forest deforestation has been identified as a major source of CO2 emissions, though biomass loss due to fragmentation--the creation of additional forest edges--has been largely overlooked as an additional CO2 source. Here, through the combination of remote sensing and knowledge on ecological processes, we present long-term carbon loss estimates due to fragmentation of Neotropical forests: within 10 years the Brazilian Atlantic Forest has lost 69 (±14) Tg C, and the Amazon 599 (±120) Tg C due to fragmentation alone. For all tropical forests, we estimate emissions up to 0.2 Pg C y(-1) or 9 to 24% of the annual global C loss due to deforestation. In conclusion, tropical forest fragmentation increases carbon loss and should be accounted for when attempting to understand the role of vegetation in the global carbon balance.

  5. Edible Neotropical Blueberries: Antioxidant and Compositional Fingerprint Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    DASTMALCHI, KEYVAN; FLORES, GEMA; PETROVA, VANYA; PEDRAZA-PEÑALOSA, PAOLA; KENNELLY, EDWARD J.

    2012-01-01

    Edible blueberry species are well recognized for their potential health benefits. Ericaceae fruits including the North American highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) and five less common edible blueberry relatives from the New World tropics, Anthopterus wardii Ball, Cavendishia grandifolia Hoerld, Macleania coccoloboides A. C. Sm., Sphyrospermum buxifolium Poepp. & Endl., and Sphyrospermum cordifolium Benth, were investigated for their antioxidant properties and phenolic profiles. The Neotropical berries C. grandifolia and A. wardii exhibited significantly higher DPPH• and ABTS•+ scavenging and iron chelation activities than V. corymbosum. Total phenolic content and HPLC-PDA compositional fingerprint analyses were also carried out. Significant correlations were observed among total phenolic contents, DPPH• and ABTS•+ scavenging, and iron chelation activities. Using HPLC-PDA, the phenolic constituents in the berries were identified as chlorogenic acid, p-coumaric acid, hyperoside, quercetin-3-O-glucoside, isoorientin, isovitexin, orientin and vitexin. Principal components analysis reduced the dimensions of antioxidant and total phenolic data to two components, which accounted for 95% of total variation among the six fruits. Each fruit species formed its own cluster, and therefore the antioxidant profile of each species was shown to be distinct. PMID:21391608

  6. Unveiling the Hidden Bat Diversity of a Neotropical Montane Forest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gloriana Chaverri

    Full Text Available Mountain environments, characterized by high levels of endemism, are at risk of experiencing significant biodiversity loss due to current trends in global warming. While many acknowledge their importance and vulnerability, these ecosystems still remain poorly studied, particularly for taxa that are difficult to sample such as bats. Aiming to estimate the amount of cryptic diversity among bats of a Neotropical montane cloud forest in Talamanca Range-south-east Central America-, we performed a 15-night sampling campaign, which resulted in 90 captured bats belonging to 8 species. We sequenced their mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI and screened their inter- and intraspecific genetic variation. Phylogenetic relations with conspecifics and closely related species from other geographic regions were established using Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian inference methods, as well as median-joining haplotype networks. Mitochondrial lineages highly divergent from hitherto characterized populations (> 9% COI dissimilarity were found in Myotis oxyotus and Hylonycteris underwoodi. Sturnira burtonlimi and M. keaysi also showed distinct mitochondrial structure with sibling species and/or populations. These results suggest that mountains in the region hold a high degree of endemicity potential that has previously been ignored in bats. They also warn of the high extinction risk montane bats may be facing due to climatic change, particularly in isolated mountain systems like Talamanca Range.

  7. Yeasts dominate soil fungal communities in three lowland Neotropical rainforests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunthorn, Micah; Kauserud, Håvard; Bass, David; Mayor, Jordan; Mahé, Frédéric

    2017-10-01

    Forest soils typically harbour a vast diversity of fungi, but are usually dominated by filamentous (hyphae-forming) taxa. Compared to temperate and boreal forests, though, we have limited knowledge about the fungal diversity in tropical rainforest soils. Here we show, by environmental metabarcoding of soil samples collected in three Neotropical rainforests, that Yeasts dominate the fungal communities in terms of the number of sequencing reads and OTUs. These unicellular forms are commonly found in aquatic environments, and their hyperdiversity may be the result of frequent inundation combined with numerous aquatic microenvironments in these rainforests. Other fungi that are frequent in aquatic environments, such as the abundant Chytridiomycotina, were also detected. While there was low similarity in OTU composition within and between the three rainforests, the fungal communities in Central America were more similar to each other than the communities in South America, reflecting a general biogeographic pattern also seen in animals, plants and protists. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Biometry of neotropical invertebrates inhabiting floodplain rivers: unraveling bionomy

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    Florencia Zilli

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Currently, it is widely recognized that invertebrates play key roles in neotropical floodplains and in many other environments worldwide. However, little information has been published concerning their biometry, in spite that it represents an essential tool for many different studies. Here, we provided length-mass and length-length relationships by fitting the linearized model (log10 Y = log10a + b log10 X and several mean biomass ratios ± SE for bivalves, gastropods, quironomids, ephemeropterans, oligochaetes and hirudineans. We measured, weighed, oven dried and incinerated to ashes specimens collected from 2005 to 2014 in the Paraná River, Argentina. The lineal equations had fit levels higher than 75% in most of the significant regressions. Hence, when slopes were compared, differences raised from ontogeny and phylogeny of taxa. Additionally, slopes resulted different from constants of other regions, types of environments and climates. In addition, organic matter ratios resulted significantly different among invertebrates according to their feeding types. The equations and ratios that we provided will facilitate future research on life history, productivity and energy transference in the food webs of invertebrates inhabiting floodplain wetlands and can be used as tools for planning management strategies and in restoration projects of aquatic environments.

  9. Complementary roles of two resilient neotropical mammalian seed dispersers

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Almeida, Adriana; Morris, Rebecca J.; Lewis, Owen T.; Mikich, Sandra B.

    2018-04-01

    Capuchin monkeys (Cebus spp. and Sapajus spp.) and coatis (Nasua spp.) coexist in most neotropical forests, including small forest remnants. Both capuchins and coatis eat fruit and disperse seeds, but little is known about whether their roles in seed dispersal are redundant or complementary. We compiled 49 studies from the literature on feeding by capuchins and/or coatis, of which 19 were comprehensive enough for our analyses. We determined the relative importance of fruit eating to each species and compared their diets. Additionally, we analysed the structure of three fruit-frugivore networks built with both animal groups and the fruits they eat and evaluated whether fruit traits influenced the network topology. Fruits represented the largest part of capuchin and coati diets, even though coatis have been known for their opportunistic and generalist diets. Capuchins and coatis also exhibited similar general diet parameters (niche breadth and trophic diversity). The three networks exhibited high connectance values and variable niche overlap. A Multiple Correspondence Analysis, failed to detect any trait or trait combination related to food use. In conclusion, capuchins and coatis both have generalist diets; they feed on many different species of fruits and exhibit important complementarity as seed dispersers. Both are likely to be particularly important seed dispersers in disturbed and fragmented forests.

  10. Landscape matrix mediates occupancy dynamics of Neotropical avian insectivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Christina M.; Campbell Grant, Evan H.; Neel, Maile C.; Fagan, William F.; Marpa, Peter P.

    2011-01-01

    In addition to patch-level attributes (i.e., area and isolation), the nature of land cover between habitat patches (the matrix) may drive colonization and extinction dynamics in fragmented landscapes. Despite a long-standing recognition of matrix effects in fragmented systems, an understanding of the relative impacts of different types of land cover on patterns and dynamics of species occurrence remains limited. We employed multi-season occupancy models to determine the relative influence of patch area, patch isolation, within-patch vegetation structure, and landscape matrix on occupancy dynamics of nine Neotropical nsectivorous birds in 99 forest patches embedded in four matrix types (agriculture, suburban evelopment, bauxite mining, and forest) in central Jamaica. We found that within-patch vegetation structure and the matrix type between patches were more important than patch area and patch isolation in determining local colonization and local extinction probabilities, and that the effects of patch area, isolation, and vegetation structure on occupancy dynamics tended to be matrix and species dependent. Across the avian community, the landscape matrix influenced local extinction more than local colonization, indicating that extinction processes, rather than movement, likely drive interspecific differences in occupancy dynamics. These findings lend crucial empirical support to the hypothesis that species occupancy dynamics in fragmented systems may depend greatly upon the landscape context.

  11. Modeling decay rates of dead wood in a neotropical forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hérault, Bruno; Beauchêne, Jacques; Muller, Félix; Wagner, Fabien; Baraloto, Christopher; Blanc, Lilian; Martin, Jean-Michel

    2010-09-01

    Variation of dead wood decay rates among tropical trees remains one source of uncertainty in global models of the carbon cycle. Taking advantage of a broad forest plot network surveyed for tree mortality over a 23-year period, we measured the remaining fraction of boles from 367 dead trees from 26 neotropical species widely varying in wood density (0.23-1.24 g cm(-3)) and tree circumference at death time (31.5-272.0 cm). We modeled decay rates within a Bayesian framework assuming a first order differential equation to model the decomposition process and tested for the effects of forest management (selective logging vs. unexploited), of mode of death (standing vs. downed) and of topographical levels (bottomlands vs. hillsides vs. hilltops) on wood decay rates. The general decay model predicts the observed remaining fraction of dead wood (R2 = 60%) with only two biological predictors: tree circumference at death time and wood specific density. Neither selective logging nor local topography had a differential effect on wood decay rates. Including the mode of death into the model revealed that standing dead trees decomposed faster than downed dead trees, but the gain of model accuracy remains rather marginal. Overall, these results suggest that the release of carbon from tropical dead trees to the atmosphere can be simply estimated using tree circumference at death time and wood density.

  12. Adaptive evolution of facial colour patterns in Neotropical primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santana, Sharlene E; Lynch Alfaro, Jessica; Alfaro, Michael E

    2012-06-07

    The rich diversity of primate faces has interested naturalists for over a century. Researchers have long proposed that social behaviours have shaped the evolution of primate facial diversity. However, the primate face constitutes a unique structure where the diverse and potentially competing functions of communication, ecology and physiology intersect, and the major determinants of facial diversity remain poorly understood. Here, we provide the first evidence for an adaptive role of facial colour patterns and pigmentation within Neotropical primates. Consistent with the hypothesis that facial patterns function in communication and species recognition, we find that species living in smaller groups and in sympatry with a higher number of congener species have evolved more complex patterns of facial colour. The evolution of facial pigmentation and hair length is linked to ecological factors, and ecogeographical rules related to UV radiation and thermoregulation are met by some facial regions. Our results demonstrate the interaction of behavioural and ecological factors in shaping one of the most outstanding facial diversities of any mammalian lineage.

  13. Revision of the Neotropical genus Protoconnus Franz (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae: Scydmaeninae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    JaŁoszyŃski, PaweŁ

    2018-03-07

    The Neotropical genus Protoconnus Franz, belonging to the tribe Glandulariini, is revised. Protoconnus is redefined based on detailed morphological study, and all known species are revised, including 10 originally placed in Protoconnus, one transferred from Euconnus, and 14 described as new. The following species are treated: P. andicola Franz (Peru), P. peruensis Franz (Peru), P. minutus Franz (Peru), P. minutissimus Franz (Peru), P. venezolanus Franz (Venezuela), P. araguanus Franz (Venezuela), P. bolivianus Franz (Bolivia), P. comarapae Franz (Bolivia), P. robustus Franz (Bolivia), P. paraguayanus Franz (Paraguay), P. princeps (Franz), comb. n. (ex Euconnus) (Peru), P. quillabambanus sp. n. (Peru), P. ecuadoranus sp. n. (Ecuador), P. napoanus sp. n. (Ecuador), P. magnus sp. n. (Ecuador), P. impressifrons sp. n. (Bolivia), P. angustus sp. n. (Bolivia), P. acutus sp. n. (Bolivia), P. tunarianus sp. n. (Bolivia), P. apaapa sp. n. (Bolivia), P. maximus sp. n. (Costa Rica), P. minusculus sp. n. (Costa Rica), P. costaricanus sp. n. (Costa Rica), P. inexpectatus sp. n. (Costa Rica), and P. volcanbaru sp. n. (Panama). Lectotypes are designated for P. andicola and P. peruensis.

  14. Ants of the Peloponnese, Greece (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

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    Borowiec Lech

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper relates to material obtained during two field trips to the Peloponnese in 2013 and 2016. With the inclusion of some hitherto unpublished ant material, it gives new records from a total of 92 sampling localities. 129 species (including morphospecies not attributed to any known taxon of ants have been recorded from the Peloponnese (southern Greece, 27 of which have been recorded from this region for the first time. Lasius reginae and 5 other morphospecies attributed only to species complexes are new to Greece.

  15. Image Edge Tracking via Ant Colony Optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ruowei; Wu, Hongkun; Liu, Shilong; Rahman, M. A.; Liu, Sanchi; Kwok, Ngai Ming

    2018-04-01

    A good edge plot should use continuous thin lines to describe the complete contour of the captured object. However, the detection of weak edges is a challenging task because of the associated low pixel intensities. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) has been employed by many researchers to address this problem. The algorithm is a meta-heuristic method developed by mimicking the natural behaviour of ants. It uses iterative searches to find the optimal solution that cannot be found via traditional optimization approaches. In this work, ACO is employed to track and repair broken edges obtained via conventional Sobel edge detector to produced a result with more connected edges.

  16. Yet More “Weeds” in the Garden: Fungal Novelties from Nests of Leaf-Cutting Ants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustin, Juliana O.; Groenewald, Johannes Z.; Nascimento, Robson J.; Mizubuti, Eduardo S. G.; Barreto, Robert W.; Elliot, Simon L.; Evans, Harry C.

    2013-01-01

    Background Symbiotic relationships modulate the evolution of living organisms in all levels of biological organization. A notable example of symbiosis is that of attine ants (Attini; Formicidae: Hymenoptera) and their fungal cultivars (Lepiotaceae and Pterulaceae; Agaricales: Basidiomycota). In recent years, this mutualism has emerged as a model system for studying coevolution, speciation, and multitrophic interactions. Ubiquitous in this ant-fungal symbiosis is the “weedy” fungus Escovopsis (Hypocreales: Ascomycota), known only as a mycoparasite of attine fungal gardens. Despite interest in its biology, ecology and molecular phylogeny—noting, especially, the high genetic diversity encountered—which has led to a steady flow of publications over the past decade, only two species of Escovopsis have formally been described. Methods and Results We sampled from fungal gardens and garden waste (middens) of nests of the leaf-cutting ant genus Acromyrmex in a remnant of subtropical Atlantic rainforest in Minas Gerais, Brazil. In culture, distinct morphotypes of Escovopsis sensu lato were recognized. Using both morphological and molecular analyses, three new species of Escovopsis were identified. These are described and illustrated herein—E. lentecrescens, E. microspora, and E. moelleri—together with a re-description of the genus and the type species, E. weberi. The new genus Escovopsioides is erected for a fourth morphotype. We identify, for the first time, a mechanism for horizontal transmission via middens. Conclusions The present study makes a start at assigning names and formal descriptions to these specific fungal parasites of attine nests. Based on the results of this exploratory and geographically-restricted survey, we expect there to be many more species of the genus Escovopsis and its relatives associated with nests of both the lower and higher Attini throughout their neotropical range, as suggested in previous studies. PMID:24376525

  17. Expressed sequence tags from Atta laevigata and identification of candidate genes for the control of pest leaf-cutting ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique-Silva Flávio

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Leafcutters are the highest evolved within Neotropical ants in the tribe Attini and model systems for studying caste formation, labor division and symbiosis with microorganisms. Some species of leafcutters are agricultural pests controlled by chemicals which affect other animals and accumulate in the environment. Aiming to provide genetic basis for the study of leafcutters and for the development of more specific and environmentally friendly methods for the control of pest leafcutters, we generated expressed sequence tag data from Atta laevigata, one of the pest ants with broad geographic distribution in South America. Results The analysis of the expressed sequence tags allowed us to characterize 2,006 unique sequences in Atta laevigata. Sixteen of these genes had a high number of transcripts and are likely positively selected for high level of gene expression, being responsible for three basic biological functions: energy conservation through redox reactions in mitochondria; cytoskeleton and muscle structuring; regulation of gene expression and metabolism. Based on leafcutters lifestyle and reports of genes involved in key processes of other social insects, we identified 146 sequences potential targets for controlling pest leafcutters. The targets are responsible for antixenobiosis, development and longevity, immunity, resistance to pathogens, pheromone function, cell signaling, behavior, polysaccharide metabolism and arginine kynase activity. Conclusion The generation and analysis of expressed sequence tags from Atta laevigata have provided important genetic basis for future studies on the biology of leaf-cutting ants and may contribute to the development of a more specific and environmentally friendly method for the control of agricultural pest leafcutters.

  18. Nocturnal arboreality in snakes in the swamplands of the Atchafalaya Basin of south-central Louisiana and Big Thicket National Preserve of Southeast Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glorioso, Brad M.; Waddle, J. Hardin

    2017-01-01

    The southeastern United States is home to a diverse assemblage of snakes, but only one species, the Rough Greensnake (Opheodrys aestivus), is considered specialized for a predominantly arboreal lifestyle. Other species, such as Ratsnakes (genus Pantherophis) and Ribbonsnakes/Gartersnakes (genus Thamnophis), are widely known to climb into vegetation and trees. Some explanations given for snake climbing behavior are foraging, thermoregulation, predator avoidance, and response to flood. Reports of arboreality in snake species typically not associated with life in the trees (such as terrestrial, aquatic, and even fossorial species) usually come from single observations, with no knowledge of prevalence of the behavior. Here, we report on arboreality of snake species detected during 8 years of night surveys in the Atchafalaya Basin of south-central Louisiana and 5+ years of night surveys in Big Thicket National Preserve in southeast Texas. We recorded a total of 1,088 detections of 19 snake species between the two study areas, with 348 detections above ground level (32%). The Rough Greensnake and Western Ribbonsnake (Thamnophis proximus) accounted for nearly 75% of total arboreal detections among the two study areas. However, with one exception, all snake species detected more than once between both study areas had at least one arboreal detection. These observations demonstrate that snakes with widely varying natural histories may be found in the trees at night, and for some species, this behavior may be more common than previously believed.

  19. Oecophylla smaragdina food conversion efficiency: prospects for ant farming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim

    2011-01-01

    can be combined with the use of the ants in biological control programmes in tropical plantations where pest insects are converted into ant biomass. To assess the cost-benefits of ant farming based on artificial feeding, food consumption and food conversion efficiency (ECI) of Oecophylla smaragdina......Oecophylla ants are sold at high prices on several commercial markets as a human delicacy, as pet food or as traditional medicine. Currently markets are supplied by ants collected from the wild; however, an increasing interest in ant farming exists as all harvest is easily sold and as ant farming...... selling prices these efficiencies led to rates of return from 1.52 to 4.56, respectively, if: (i) protein is supplied from commercial products; or (ii) alternatively supplied from free sources such as insects and kitchen waste. These results suggest that Oecophylla ant farming may become highly profitable...

  20. Hybrid Bee Ant Colony Algorithm for Effective Load Balancing And ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROF. OLIVER OSUAGWA

    Ant Colony algorithm is used in this hybrid Bee Ant Colony algorithm to solve load balancing issues ... Genetic Algorithm (MO-GA) for dynamic job scheduling that .... Information Networking and Applications Workshops. [7]. M. Dorigo & T.

  1. The use of weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) in tropical agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim

    2011-01-01

    by the consumed pest insects, can be harvested and utilised for nutrition as they are tasty and high in proteins, vitamins and minerals. Thus, plantations may function as ant farms and in addition to plant production also hosts the production of edible animal protein. In this setup harmful pest insects are turned...... farming as a way forward to solve an increasing future demand for protein. Weaver ant farming may build on natural food collected by the ants or alternatively be boosted by feeding the ant colonies actively with protein and sugar. In both cases, when ant biocontrol is combined with ant farming......, the environmental cost of protein production may fall even lower than for other insects as the ants feed on pests that would otherwise reduce the plant yield and since the farming area is simultaneously in use for plant production. In this presentation I provide data showing (i) how the harvest of ants can...

  2. Dealing with water deficit in Atta ant colonies: large ants scout for water while small ants transport it

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Carlos Da-Silva

    2012-07-01

    Leafcutter ants (Atta sexdens rubropilosa (Forel 1908 have an elaborate social organization, complete with caste divisions. Activities carried out by specialist groups contribute to the overall success and survival of the colony when it is confronted with environmental challenges such as dehydration. Ants detect variations in humidity inside the nest and react by activating several types of behavior that enhance water uptake and decrease water loss, but it is not clear whether or not a single caste collects water regardless of the cost of bringing this resource back to the colony. Accordingly, we investigated water collection activities in three colonies of Atta sexdens rubropilosa experimentally exposed to water stress. Specifically, we analyzed whether or not the same ant caste foraged for water, regardless of the absolute energetic cost (distance of transporting this resource back to the colony. Our experimental design offered water sources at 0 m, 1 m and 10 m from the nest. We studied the body size of ants near the water sources from the initial offer of water (time  =  0 to 120 min, and tested for specialization. We observed a reduction in the average size and variance of ants that corroborated the specialization hypothesis. Although the temporal course of specialization changed with distance, the final outcome was similar among distances. Thus, we conclude that, for this species, a specialist (our use of the word “specialist” does not mean exclusive task force is responsible for collecting water, regardless of the cost of transporting water back to the colony.

  3. Extended phenotype: nematodes turn ants into bird-dispersed fruits

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hughes, D P; Kronauer, D J C; Boomsma, J J

    2008-01-01

    A recent study has discovered a novel extended phenotype of a nematode which alters its ant host to resemble ripe fruit. The infected ants are in turn eaten by frugivorous birds that disperse the nematode's eggs.......A recent study has discovered a novel extended phenotype of a nematode which alters its ant host to resemble ripe fruit. The infected ants are in turn eaten by frugivorous birds that disperse the nematode's eggs....

  4. A catalogue of Cephalotini ant types (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae deposited in the Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lívia P. Prado

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The Hymenoptera laboratory of the Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo (MZSP houses one of the most representative collections of Neotropical ants worldwide. This is due to the wide geographical distribution of its specimens, and also because of the comparatively large number of types and taxa represented. The catalogue, following the general recommendations of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, lists types of the tribe Cephalotini deposited in the collection of MZSP; also providing information regarding labels, original publications, state of conservation of specimens, taxonomic status of listed species, and their current classification when different from the original. An index for the listed taxa is also provided. In total, the catalogue lists types of 43 nominal species, of which 23 are still valid, from the two recognized genera Cephalotes and Procryptocerus (four represented by holotypes, 17 by holotypes and paratypes, 15 by paratypes, five by syntypes, one by a lectotype and one by a neotype.

  5. Neotropical species of Meteorus Haliday (Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Meteorinae) parasitizing Arctiinae (Lepidoptera: Noctuoidea: Erebidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguirre, Helmuth; Shaw, Scott R

    2014-03-17

    Three new species of Meteorus parasitoids of Arctiinae are described: Meteorus anuae n. sp., M. juliae n. sp. and M. mirandae n. sp. The first biological record for M. cecavorum Aguirre & Shaw as well as its cocoon description is reported. A comprehensive key for the Neotropical Meteorus attacking Arctiinae is provided. A total of nine Meteorus species have been reared from Arctiinae in the Neotropical Region. Six of them are gregarious and three solitary. The biological information about host and food plants concurs with the hypothesis of specialist parasitoids preferring "nasty" caterpillars.

  6. The effects of food presentation and microhabitat upon resource monopoly in a ground-foraging ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae community

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terrence P McGlynn

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available In Neotropical wet forests several species of omnivorous, resource-defending ants, live and forage in close proximity to one another. Although the forest floor is heterogeneous in microhabitat and food quantity, little is known about the impact of microhabitat and food variation upon resource monopoly among ants. We investigated how food type and microhabitat influence food monopoly in resource-defending ants in old-growth tropical wet forest in the Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica. We measured several microhabitat characteristics at 66 points in a 0.5 hectare plot, and baited each point with two categories of tuna bait. These baits were presented in "split" and "clumped" arrangements. We measured the frequency of bait monopoly by a single species, as well as the number of recruited ant foragers at a bait. Out of five common species, two (Wasmannia auropunctata and Pheidole simonsi more frequently monopolized one bait type over the other, and one (P. simonsi recruited more ants to the split baits. We then considered the recruitment response by all ant species in the community. We found that the frequency of monopoly, sharing, and the absence of ants at a given point in the rainforest differed with bait type. The frequency of monopoly was associated with microhabitat type in two out of eight microhabitat variables (leaf litter depth and palms; variation in two other types (canopy tree distance and leafcutter ant trails was associated with changes in forager number. In at least two ant species, food presentation affected monopoly at baits; among all resource-defending ants, the microhabitats where ants foraged for food and the type of food located determined in part the frequency of monopoly and the number of foragers at the food item. These results suggest that the location and presentation of food items determines in part which ant species will utilize the resource.En los bosques húmedos de la Región Neotropical conviven varias especies de

  7. Histrionicotoxin alkaloids finally detected in an ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jones, Tappey H.; Adams, Rachelle Martha Marie; Spande, Thomas F.

    2012-01-01

    Workers of the ant Carebarella bicolor collected in Panama were found to have two major poison-frog alkaloids, cis- and trans-fused decahydroquinolines (DHQs) of the 269AB type, four minor 269AB isomers, two minor 269B isomers, and three isomers of DHQ 271D. For the first time in an ant, however......) sp., were found to have a very similar DHQ complex but failed to show HTXs. Several new DHQ alkaloids of MW 271 (named in the frog as 271G) are reported from the above ants that have both m/z 202 and 204 as major fragment ions, unlike the spectrum seen for the poison-frog alkaloid 271D, which has...... only an m/z 204 base peak. Found also for the first time in skin extracts from the comparison frog Oophaga granulifera of Costa Rica is a trace DHQ of MW 273. It is coded as 273F in the frog; a different isomer is found in the ant....

  8. Ants, rodents and seed predation in Proteaceae

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... their nests extremely rapidly. One benefit of the ant-plant interaction may be seed escape ... (odourless to humans when dry) household glue or, b) placing seed in a Petri dish ... the layout of exclosures was completed. Response was not as.

  9. The evolution of invasiveness in garden ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cremer, Sylvia; Ugelvig, Line Vej; Drijfhout, Falko P

    2008-01-01

    It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its ra...

  10. The ejaculatory biology of leafcutter ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    den Boer, Susanne; Stürup, Marlene; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2015-01-01

    understanding of the fundamental biology of ejaculate production, transfer and physiological function remains extremely limited. We studied the ejaculation process in the leafcutter ant Atta colombica and found that it starts with the appearance of a clear pre-ejaculatory fluid (PEF) at the tip...

  11. Mating, hybridisation and introgression in Lasius ants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Have, van der T.M.; Pedersen, J.S.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2011-01-01

    Recent reviews have shown that hybridisation among ant species is likely to be more common than previously appreciated. but that documented cases of introgression remain rare. After molecular phylogenetic work had shown that European Lasius niger (LINNAEUS, 1758) and L. psammophilus SEIFERT, 1992

  12. Ants recognize foes and not friends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrieri, Fernando J.; Nehring, Volker; Jørgensen, Charlotte G.; Nielsen, John; Galizia, C. Giovanni; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2009-01-01

    Discriminating among individuals and rejecting non-group members is essential for the evolution and stability of animal societies. Ants are good models for studying recognition mechanisms, because they are typically very efficient in discriminating ‘friends’ (nest-mates) from ‘foes’ (non-nest-mates). Recognition in ants involves multicomponent cues encoded in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles. Here, we tested whether workers of the carpenter ant Camponotus herculeanus use the presence and/or absence of cuticular hydrocarbons to discriminate between nest-mates and non-nest-mates. We supplemented the cuticular profile with synthetic hydrocarbons mixed to liquid food and then assessed behavioural responses using two different bioassays. Our results show that (i) the presence, but not the absence, of an additional hydrocarbon elicited aggression and that (ii) among the three classes of hydrocarbons tested (unbranched, mono-methylated and dimethylated alkanes; for mono-methylated alkanes, we present a new synthetic pathway), only the dimethylated alkane was effective in eliciting aggression. Our results suggest that carpenter ants use a fundamentally different mechanism for nest-mate recognition than previously thought. They do not specifically recognize nest-mates, but rather recognize and reject non-nest-mates bearing odour cues that are novel to their own colony cuticular hydrocarbon profile. This begs for a reappraisal of the mechanisms underlying recognition systems in social insects. PMID:19364750

  13. Recognition of social identity in ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bos, Nick; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2012-01-01

    Recognizing the identity of others, from the individual to the group level, is a hallmark of society. Ants, and other social insects, have evolved advanced societies characterized by efficient social recognition systems. Colony identity is mediated by colony specific signature mixtures, a blend...

  14. Plasmodium parasitaemia among pregnant women attending ante ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... Ante-Natal Clinic at Military Hospital Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria using the Standard parasitological technique. Venous blood was collected from 200 pregnant women, both thick and thin blood films were made on clean greese-free glass slide and stained with 10% Giemsa stains diluted with 7.2 buffered water for ...

  15. Operant conditioning in the ant Myrmica sabuleti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cammaerts, M C

    2004-11-30

    Operant conditioning could be obtained in the ant Myrmica sabuleti by presenting to the workers, during a six-day period, an apparatus containing either sugared water or meat as a reward. The conditioning obtained using sugared water as a reward was short lasting. A reconditioning was more persistent and lasted four hours. The ants' response was very precise, since they exhibited it only in front of an apparatus identical to that used during the training phase. Operant conditioning obtained using meat as a reward was more pronounced than that obtained by using sugared water, probably because meat is more valuable as a reward than sugar for the species studied, which is essentially a carnivorous one. Such a conditioning was rather persistent. Indeed, a first operant conditioning obtained by using meat as a reward could still be detected after seven hours, and a reconditioning was still significant after eight hours. One day after this eight-hour period without rewarding the ants, the response was higher again and a further day later, it was still significant. Since the operant conditioning is easy to perform and quantify and since the ants' response is very precise, such a conditioning can be used for further studying M. sabuleti workers' visual perception.

  16. A global database of ant species abundances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Heloise; Dunn, Rob R.; Sanders, Nathan J.; Grossman, Blair F.; Photakis, Manoli; Abril, Silvia; Agosti, Donat; Andersen, Alan N.; Angulo, Elena; Armbrecht, Ingre; Arnan, Xavier; Baccaro, Fabricio B.; Bishop, Tom R.; Boulay, Raphael; Bruhl, Carsten; Castracani, Cristina; Cerda, Xim; Del Toro, Israel; Delsinne, Thibaut; Diaz, Mireia; Donoso, David A.; Ellison, Aaron M.; Enriquez, Martha L.; Fayle, Tom M.; Feener Jr., Donald H.; Fisher, Brian L.; Fisher, Robert N.; Fitpatrick, Matthew C.; Gomez, Cristanto; Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Gove, Aaron; Grasso, Donato A.; Groc, Sarah; Guenard, Benoit; Gunawardene, Nihara; Heterick, Brian; Hoffmann, Benjamin; Janda, Milan; Jenkins, Clinton; Kaspari, Michael; Klimes, Petr; Lach, Lori; Laeger, Thomas; Lattke, John; Leponce, Maurice; Lessard, Jean-Philippe; Longino, John; Lucky, Andrea; Luke, Sarah H.; Majer, Jonathan; McGlynn, Terrence P.; Menke, Sean; Mezger, Dirk; Mori, Alessandra; Moses, Jimmy; Munyai, Thinandavha Caswell; Pacheco, Renata; Paknia, Omid; Pearce-Duvet, Jessica; Pfeiffer, Martin; Philpott, Stacy M.; Resasco, Julian; Retana, Javier; Silva, Rogerio R.; Sorger, Magdalena D.; Souza, Jorge; Suarez, Andrew V.; Tista, Melanie; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L.; Vonshak, Merav; Weiser, Michael D.; Yates, Michelle; Parr, Catherine L.

    2017-01-01

    What forces structure ecological assemblages? A key limitation to general insights about assemblage structure is the availability of data that are collected at a small spatial grain (local assemblages) and a large spatial extent (global coverage). Here, we present published and unpublished data from 51,388 ant abundance and occurrence records of more than 2693 species and 7953 morphospecies from local assemblages collected at 4212 locations around the world. Ants were selected because they are diverse and abundant globally, comprise a large fraction of animal biomass in most terrestrial communities, and are key contributors to a range of ecosystem functions. Data were collected between 1949 and 2014, and include, for each geo-referenced sampling site, both the identity of the ants collected and details of sampling design, habitat type and degree of disturbance. The aim of compiling this dataset was to provide comprehensive species abundance data in order to test relationships between assemblage structure and environmental and biogeographic factors. Data were collected using a variety of standardised methods, such as pitfall and Winkler traps, and will be valuable for studies investigating large-scale forces structuring local assemblages. Understanding such relationships is particularly critical under current rates of global change. We encourage authors holding additional data on systematically collected ant assemblages, especially those in dry and cold, and remote areas, to contact us and contribute their data to this growing dataset.

  17. Studies on the environmental implications of ants (Hymenoptera ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A study of ants associated wh two synanthropcenvironments in Awka was carried out in 2008 using pitfall and bait traps. The study yelded a total of 561 ants wth 409 obtaned from the hemisynanthrophic environment while 192 ants were collected from the endophilic environment. The percentage occurrence, total dstribution ...

  18. Dynamics of an ant-plant-pollinator model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yuanshi; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Nathaniel Holland, J.

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we consider plant-pollinator-ant systems in which plant-pollinator interaction and plant-ant interaction are both mutualistic, but there also exists interference of pollinators by ants. The plant-pollinator interaction can be described by a Beddington-DeAngelis formula, so we extend the formula to characterize plant-pollinator mutualisms, including the interference by ants, and form a plant-pollinator-ant model. Using dynamical systems theory, we show uniform persistence of the model. Moreover, we demonstrate conditions under which boundary equilibria are globally asymptotically stable. The dynamics exhibit mechanisms by which the three species could coexist when ants interfere with pollinators. We define a threshold in ant interference. When ant interference is strong, it can drive plant-pollinator mutualisms to extinction. Furthermore, if the ants depend on pollination mutualism for their persistence, then sufficiently strong ant interference could lead to their own extinction as well. Yet, when ant interference is weak, plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualisms can promote the persistence of one another.

  19. Ants Orasest ja Anne Lange monograafiast / Jüri Talvet

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Talvet, Jüri, 1945-

    2005-01-01

    Arvustus: Oras, Ants. Luulekool. I, Apoloogia / koostajad Hando Runnel ja Jaak Rähesoo. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2003 ; Oras, Ants. Luulekool II, Meistriklass. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2004 ; Lange, Anne. Ants Oras : [kirjandusteadlane, -kriitik ja tõlkija (1900-1982)]. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2004

  20. SAD kinases sculpt axonal arbors of sensory neurons through long and short-term responses to neurotrophin signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lilley, Brendan N.; Pan, Y. Albert; Sanes, Joshua R.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Extrinsic cues activate intrinsic signaling mechanisms to pattern neuronal shape and connectivity. We showed previously that three cytoplasmic Ser/Thr kinases, LKB1, SAD-A and SAD-B, control early axon-dendrite polarization in forebrain neurons. Here we assess their role in other neuronal types. We found that all three kinases are dispensable for axon formation outside of the cortex, but that SAD kinases are required for formation of central axonal arbors by subsets of sensory neurons. The requirement for SAD kinases is most prominent in NT-3 dependent neurons. SAD kinases transduce NT-3 signals in two ways through distinct pathways. First, sustained NT-3/TrkC signaling increases SAD protein levels. Second, short duration NT-3/TrkC signals transiently activate SADs by inducing dephosphorylation of C-terminal domains, thereby allowing activating phosphorylation of the kinase domain. We propose that SAD kinases integrate long- and short duration signals from extrinsic cues to sculpt axon arbors within the CNS. PMID:23790753

  1. SAD kinases sculpt axonal arbors of sensory neurons through long- and short-term responses to neurotrophin signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lilley, Brendan N; Pan, Y Albert; Sanes, Joshua R

    2013-07-10

    Extrinsic cues activate intrinsic signaling mechanisms to pattern neuronal shape and connectivity. We showed previously that three cytoplasmic Ser/Thr kinases, LKB1, SAD-A, and SAD-B, control early axon-dendrite polarization in forebrain neurons. Here, we assess their role in other neuronal types. We found that all three kinases are dispensable for axon formation outside of the cortex but that SAD kinases are required for formation of central axonal arbors by subsets of sensory neurons. The requirement for SAD kinases is most prominent in NT-3 dependent neurons. SAD kinases transduce NT-3 signals in two ways through distinct pathways. First, sustained NT-3/TrkC signaling increases SAD protein levels. Second, short-duration NT-3/TrkC signals transiently activate SADs by inducing dephosphorylation of C-terminal domains, thereby allowing activating phosphorylation of the kinase domain. We propose that SAD kinases integrate long- and short-duration signals from extrinsic cues to sculpt axon arbors within the CNS. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Habitat diversity of the Multicolored Asian ladybeetle Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae in agricultural and arboreal ecosystems: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vandereycken, A.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The Multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas, native to Asia, is an invasive species in many European and American countries. Initially introduced as a biological control agent against aphids and coccids in greenhouses, this alien species rapidly invaded many habitats such as forests, meadows, wetlands, and agricultural crops. This paper reviews the habitats (forests, crops, herbs, gardens and orchards where H. axyridis has been observed, either during insect samplings or as part of Integrated Pest Management (IPM programs. Studies have referenced H. axyridis on 106 plant taxa (35 arboreal species, 21 crop species, 27 herbaceous species, 11 ornamental species, and 12 orchard species and have identified 89 plant-prey relationships (34 arboreal species, 16 crop species, 13 herbaceous species, 10 ornamental species, and 16 orchard species in different countries. Harmonia axyridis is more abundant in forest areas, principally on Acer, Salix, Tilia and Quercus, than in agroecosystems. Some plant species, such as Urtica dioica L., which surround crops, contain large numbers of H. axyridis and could constitute important reserves of this alien species in advance of aphid invasions into crops. This review highlights the polyphagy and eurytopic aspect of H. axyridis.

  3. Are ant feces nutrients for plants? A metabolomics approach to elucidate the nutritional effects on plants hosting weaver ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vidkjær, Nanna Hjort; Wollenweber, Bernd; Gislum, René

    2015-01-01

    Weaver ants (genus Oecophylla) are tropical carnivorous ant species living in high numbers in the canopies of trees. The ants excrete copious amounts of fecal matter on leaf surfaces, and these feces may provide nutrients to host trees. This hypothesis is supported by studies of ant......-plant interactions involving other ant species that have demonstrated the transfer of nutrients from ants to plants. In this 7-months study, a GC–MS-based metabolomics approach along with an analysis of total nitrogen and carbon levels was used to study metabolic changes in ant-hosting Coffea arabica plants compared...... with control plants. The results showed elevated levels of total nitrogen, amino acids, fatty acids, caffeine, and secondary metabolites of the phenylpropanoid pathway in leaves from ant-hosting plants. Minor effects were observed for sugars, whereas little or no effect was observed for organic acids, despite...

  4. Plant lock and ant key: pairwise coevolution of an exclusion filter in an ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brouat, C; Garcia, N; Andary, C; McKey, D

    2001-10-22

    Although observations suggest pairwise coevolution in specific ant-plant symbioses, coevolutionary processes have rarely been demonstrated. We report on, what is to the authors' knowledge, the strongest evidence yet for reciprocal adaptation of morphological characters in a species-specific ant-plant mutualism. The plant character is the prostoma, which is a small unlignified organ at the apex of the domatia in which symbiotic ants excavate an entrance hole. Each myrmecophyte in the genus Leonardoxa has evolved a prostoma with a different shape. By performing precise measurements on the prostomata of three related myrmecophytes, on their specific associated ants and on the entrance holes excavated by symbiotic ants at the prostomata, we showed that correspondence of the plant and ant traits forms a morphological and behavioural filter. We have strong evidence for coevolution between the dimensions and shape of the symbiotic ants and the prostoma in one of the three ant-Leonardoxa associations.

  5. Palm utilization and management in Asia: examples for the neotropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    1992-01-01

    productos comestibles de 61 especies de palmas asiáticas. A partir de estos ejemplos, se hacen sugerencias para el manejo y la valorización de las palmas neotropicales, a fin de incrementar el suministro de alimentos y de otros productos útiles. Asia is endowed with the world’s greatest palm biodiversity, and also possesses the highest diversity of palm utilization. Palms have a long history of management for both subsistence and commercial products, many of which are deeply embedded in local cultures. In Asia, traditional technologies of exploiting wild and semi-wild palm populations, as well as processing techniques associated with many of the palm products, are generally more advanced than in the Neotropics. Native Asian palms currently provide significant quantities of food, beverage, fiber, rattan, construction material and other products. This article surveys edible products from 61 Asian palm species. Using these examples from Asia, suggestions are made as to how Neotropical palms could be managed and valorized for food and other useful products.

  6. Neotropical bats: estimating species diversity with DNA barcodes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth L Clare

    Full Text Available DNA barcoding using the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene (COI is frequently employed as an efficient method of species identification in animal life and may also be used to estimate species richness, particularly in understudied faunas. Despite numerous past demonstrations of the efficiency of this technique, few studies have attempted to employ DNA barcoding methodologies on a large geographic scale, particularly within tropical regions. In this study we survey current and potential species diversity using DNA barcodes with a collection of more than 9000 individuals from 163 species of Neotropical bats (order Chiroptera. This represents one of the largest surveys to employ this strategy on any animal group and is certainly the largest to date for land vertebrates. Our analysis documents the utility of this tool over great geographic distances and across extraordinarily diverse habitats. Among the 163 included species 98.8% possessed distinct sets of COI haplotypes making them easily recognizable at this locus. We detected only a single case of shared haplotypes. Intraspecific diversity in the region was high among currently recognized species (mean of 1.38%, range 0-11.79% with respect to birds, though comparable to other bat assemblages. In 44 of 163 cases, well-supported, distinct intraspecific lineages were identified which may suggest the presence of cryptic species though mean and maximum intraspecific divergence were not good predictors of their presence. In all cases, intraspecific lineages require additional investigation using complementary molecular techniques and additional characters such as morphology and acoustic data. Our analysis provides strong support for the continued assembly of DNA barcoding libraries and ongoing taxonomic investigation of bats.

  7. Phyllostomid bat occurrence in successional stages of neotropical dry forests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Daniel Avila-Cabadilla

    Full Text Available Tropical dry forests (TDFs are highly endangered tropical ecosystems being replaced by a complex mosaic of patches of different successional stages, agricultural fields and pasturelands. In this context, it is urgent to understand how taxa playing critical ecosystem roles respond to habitat modification. Because Phyllostomid bats provide important ecosystem services (e.g. facilitate gene flow among plant populations and promote forest regeneration, in this study we aimed to identify potential patterns on their response to TDF transformation in sites representing four different successional stages (initial, early, intermediate and late in three Neotropical regions: México, Venezuela and Brazil. We evaluated bat occurrence at the species, ensemble (abundance and assemblage level (species richness and composition, guild composition. We also evaluated how bat occurrence was modulated by the marked seasonality of TDFs. In general, we found high seasonal and regional specificities in phyllostomid occurrence, driven by specificities at species and guild levels. For example, highest frugivore abundance occurred in the early stage of the moistest TDF, while highest nectarivore abundance occurred in the same stage of the driest TDF. The high regional specificity of phyllostomid responses could arise from: (1 the distinctive environmental conditions of each region, (2 the specific behavior and ecological requirements of the regional bat species, (3 the composition, structure and phenological patterns of plant assemblages in the different stages, and (4 the regional landscape composition and configuration. We conclude that, in tropical seasonal environments, it is imperative to perform long-term studies considering seasonal variations in environmental conditions and plant phenology, as well as the role of landscape attributes. This approach will allow us to identify potential patterns in bat responses to habitat modification, which constitute an invaluable

  8. Phyllostomid Bat Occurrence in Successional Stages of Neotropical Dry Forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avila-Cabadilla, Luis Daniel; Stoner, Kathryn Elizabeth; Nassar, Jafet M.; Espírito-Santo, Mario M.; Alvarez-Añorve, Mariana Yolotl; Aranguren, Carla I.; Henry, Mickael; González-Carcacía, José A.; Dolabela Falcão, Luiz A.; Sanchez-Azofeifa, Gerardo Arturo

    2014-01-01

    Tropical dry forests (TDFs) are highly endangered tropical ecosystems being replaced by a complex mosaic of patches of different successional stages, agricultural fields and pasturelands. In this context, it is urgent to understand how taxa playing critical ecosystem roles respond to habitat modification. Because Phyllostomid bats provide important ecosystem services (e.g. facilitate gene flow among plant populations and promote forest regeneration), in this study we aimed to identify potential patterns on their response to TDF transformation in sites representing four different successional stages (initial, early, intermediate and late) in three Neotropical regions: México, Venezuela and Brazil. We evaluated bat occurrence at the species, ensemble (abundance) and assemblage level (species richness and composition, guild composition). We also evaluated how bat occurrence was modulated by the marked seasonality of TDFs. In general, we found high seasonal and regional specificities in phyllostomid occurrence, driven by specificities at species and guild levels. For example, highest frugivore abundance occurred in the early stage of the moistest TDF, while highest nectarivore abundance occurred in the same stage of the driest TDF. The high regional specificity of phyllostomid responses could arise from: (1) the distinctive environmental conditions of each region, (2) the specific behavior and ecological requirements of the regional bat species, (3) the composition, structure and phenological patterns of plant assemblages in the different stages, and (4) the regional landscape composition and configuration. We conclude that, in tropical seasonal environments, it is imperative to perform long-term studies considering seasonal variations in environmental conditions and plant phenology, as well as the role of landscape attributes. This approach will allow us to identify potential patterns in bat responses to habitat modification, which constitute an invaluable tool for

  9. Interactive effects of soil-dwelling ants, ant mounds and simulated grazing on local plant community composition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veen, G.F.; Olff, H.

    2011-01-01

    Interactions between aboveground vertebrate herbivores and subterranean yellow meadow ants (Lasius flavus) can drive plant community patterns in grassland ecosystems. Here, we study the relative importance of the presence of ants (L. flavus) and ant mounds under different simulated grazing regimes

  10. Revision of the Middle American clade of the ant genus Stenamma Westwood (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Branstetter

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Stenamma is a cryptic “leaf-litter” ant genus that occurs in mesic forest habitats throughout the Holarctic region, Central America, and part of northwestern South America (Colombia and Ecuador. The genus was thought to be restricted primarily to the temperate zone, but recent collecting efforts have uncovered a large radiation of Neotropical forms, which rival the Holarctic species in terms of morphological and behavioral diversity. By inferring a broad-scale molecular phylogeny of Stenamma, Branstetter (2012 showed that all Neotropical species belong to a diverse Middle American clade (MAC, and that this clade is sister to an almost completely geographically separated Holarctic clade (HOC. Here, the Middle American clade of Stenamma is revised to recognize 40 species, of which 33 are described as new. Included in the revision are a key to species based on the worker caste, and for each species where possible, descriptions and images of workers and queens, images of males, information on geographic distribution, descriptions of intraspecific variation, and notes on natural history. Several species groups are defined, but the majority of species remain unassigned due to a lack of diagnostic morphological character states for most molecular clades. The following species are redescribed: S. alas Longino, S. diversum Mann, S. expolitum Smith, S. felixi Mann, S. huachucanum Smith, S. manni Wheeler, and S. schmidti Menozzi. The following are described as new: S. andersoni sp. n., S. atribellum sp. n., S. brujita sp. n., S. callipygium sp. n., S. catracho sp. n., S. connectum sp. n., S. crypticum sp. n., S. cusuco sp. n., S. excisum sp. n., S. expolitico sp. n., S. hojarasca sp. n., S. ignotum sp. n., S. lagunum sp. n., S. llama sp. n., S. leptospinum sp. n., S. lobinodus sp. n., S. longinoi sp. n., S. maximon sp. n., S. megamanni sp. n., S. monstrosum sp. n., S. muralla sp. n., S. nanozoi sp. n., S. nonotch sp. n., S. ochrocnemis sp. n., S

  11. Freyinae, a major new subfamily of Neotropical jumping spiders (Araneae: Salticidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, G B

    2015-11-02

    Freyinae, new subfamily, is described for a group of genera of Neotropical jumping spiders that can be distinguished from other non-ant mimic salticoid Neotropical salticids by having the following three morphological features: a slightly more elongate carapace, a distinctive prolateral tibial macrosetae arrangement (medially placed subdistal and subproximal macrosetae, with a subdorsal medial macroseta in some males), and an unusual dorsoventrally thick tegulum basal division (although one or two of these features are sometimes lost). It includes 20 genera previously considered valid, of which 19 are retained: Akela Peckham & Peckham, 1896, Aphirape C.L. Koch, 1850, Asaracus C.L. Koch, 1846, Capidava Simon, 1902, Chira Peckham & Peckham, 1896, Edilemma Ruiz & Brescovit, 2006, Eustiromastix Simon, 1902, Freya C.L. Koch, 1850, Frigga C.L. Koch, 1850, Kalcerrytus Galiano, 2000, Nycerella Galiano, 1982, Onofre Ruiz & Brescovit, 2007, Pachomius Peckham & Peckham, 1896, Phiale C.L. Koch, 1846, Rishaschia Makhan, 2006, Sumampattus Galiano, 1983, Trydarssus Galiano, 1995, Tullgrenella Mello‑Leitão, 1941, and Wedoquella Galiano, 1984. Romitia Caporiacco, 1947 (and its synonym Uspachus Galiano, 1995) is synonymized with Pachomius, new synonymy. New genera described in the subfamily are: Drizztius, Leptofreya, Megafreya, Philira, Tarkas, Triggella, and Xanthofreya. The following nomenclatorial changes are made: New synonyms: Freya demarcata Chamberlin & Ivie, 1936 = Freya (sub Cyrene) albosignata (F.O.P.-Cambridge, 1901); Freya (sub Cyrene) grisea (F.O.P.-Cambridge, 1901) = Freya (sub Cyrene) infuscata (F.O.P.-Cambridge, 1901); Freya (sub Cyrene) emarginata (F.O.P.-Cambridge, 1901) and Nycerella (sub Heraclea) sanguinea paradoxa (Peckham & Peckham, 1896) = Nycerella (sub Heraclea) sanguinea (Peckham & Peckham, 1896); Pachomius (sub Phiale) maculosus (Chickering, 1946) = Phiale (sub Cyrene) bilobata (F.O.P.-Cambridge, 1901); Phiale (sub Cyrene) mediocava (F

  12. Caracterización citogenética del pez neotropical Brycon henni (Pisces: Characidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana David López

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available La sabaleta Brycon henni, es un pez nativo del occidente colombiano importante para la seguridad alimentaria de las poblaciones ribereñas y para la pesca deportiva por sus característica combativas. El desarrollarse entre los 18 y 28ºC la convierte en una especie de cultivo promisoria. Un estudio citogenético a partir de células branquiales indicó diferentes complementos cromosómicos. Este trabajo aplicó la técnica de cultivo de linfocitos a muestras de sangre de adultos. Las muestras de sangre total fueron sembradas en 4 ml de medio de cultivo Ham-F12, suplementado con 0.5 ml de Suero Fetal Bovino y 0.7 ml del mitógeno Fitohemaglutinina M (Gibco® durante 96 hr a 28ºC; 1.5 hr antes de la cosecha agregamos 100µl de Colcemid al 10% como factor antimitótico. Cada cultivo se incubó con 10 ml de solución hipotónica KCl 0.56% por 24 min a 37ºC, para continuar con tres fijaciones sucesivas, centrifugaciones y tinción Giemsa al 5%. Las mejores metafases fueron fotografiadas en microscopio, correspondientes a 6 machos y 8 hembras, indicando un número diploide de 50 cromosomas, clasificados en Metacéntricos (26M, Submetacéntricos (16SM y Subtelocéntricos (8ST, para un número fundamental (NF de 100 brazos. La tendencia evolutiva hallada fue de tipo B; no se encontraron cromosomas supernumerarios pero sí un primer par de cromosomas metacéntricos grandes, considerado marcador para el género Brycon, no determinante de heteromorfismo sexual. Estos resultados coinciden con los demás bricónidos investigados, en donde se podría considerar un ancestro común con un número cromosómico básico y cariotipos simétricos.Cytogenetic characterization of the neotropical fish Brycon henni (Pisces: Characidae. Brycon henni, is a native fish from Western Colombia is important as food and in sport fishing, and could be cultured in waters between 18 and 28ºC. A previous cytogenetic study in branchial cells indicated different chromosomal

  13. Edge detection in digital images using Ant Colony Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marjan Kuchaki Rafsanjani

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is an optimization algorithm inspired by the behavior of real ant colonies to approximate the solutions of difficult optimization problems. In this paper, ACO is introduced to tackle the image edge detection problem. The proposed approach is based on the distribution of ants on an image; ants try to find possible edges by using a state transition function. Experimental results show that the proposed method compared to standard edge detectors is less sensitive to Gaussian noise and gives finer details and thinner edges when compared to earlier ant-based approaches.

  14. The Pied Piper: A Parasitic Beetle's Melodies Modulate Ant Behaviours.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Di Giulio

    Full Text Available Ants use various communication channels to regulate their social organisation. The main channel that drives almost all the ants' activities and behaviours is the chemical one, but it is long acknowledged that the acoustic channel also plays an important role. However, very little is known regarding exploitation of the acoustical channel by myrmecophile parasites to infiltrate the ant society. Among social parasites, the ant nest beetles (Paussus are obligate myrmecophiles able to move throughout the colony at will and prey on the ants, surprisingly never eliciting aggression from the colonies. It has been recently postulated that stridulatory organs in Paussus might be evolved as an acoustic mechanism to interact with ants. Here, we survey the role of acoustic signals employed in the Paussus beetle-Pheidole ant system. Ants parasitised by Paussus beetles produce caste-specific stridulations. We found that Paussus can "speak" three different "languages", each similar to sounds produced by different ant castes (workers, soldiers, queen. Playback experiments were used to test how host ants respond to the sounds emitted by Paussus. Our data suggest that, by mimicking the stridulations of the queen, Paussus is able to dupe the workers of its host and to be treated as royalty. This is the first report of acoustic mimicry in a beetle parasite of ants.

  15. The interactions of ants with their biotic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chomicki, Guillaume; Renner, Susanne S

    2017-03-15

    This s pecial feature results from the symposium 'Ants 2016: ant interactions with their biotic environments' held in Munich in May 2016 and deals with the interactions between ants and other insects, plants, microbes and fungi, studied at micro- and macroevolutionary levels with a wide range of approaches, from field ecology to next-generation sequencing, chemical ecology and molecular genetics. In this paper, we review key aspects of these biotic interactions to provide background information for the papers of this s pecial feature After listing the major types of biotic interactions that ants engage in, we present a brief overview of ant/ant communication, ant/plant interactions, ant/fungus symbioses, and recent insights about ants and their endosymbionts. Using a large molecular clock-dated Formicidae phylogeny, we map the evolutionary origins of different ant clades' interactions with plants, fungi and hemiptera. Ants' biotic interactions provide ideal systems to address fundamental ecological and evolutionary questions about mutualism, coevolution, adaptation and animal communication. © 2017 The Author(s).

  16. Intraspecific and Intracolonial Variation in the Profile of Venom Alkaloids and Cuticular Hydrocarbons of the Fire Ant Solenopsis saevissima Smith (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson Fox

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Fire ants are aggressive Neotropical ants that are extensively similar in general biology and morphology, making species identification difficult. Some fire ant species are top-rated pests spreading throughout the world by trade vessels. Many researchers attempted to sort between invasive and native species by using chemical characters, including patterns of venom alkaloids. The present study is the first to report intraspecific variation in some chemical characters, namely, cuticular hydrocarbons and venom alkaloids, within the Brazilian fire ant species Solenopsis saevissima and also reports on within-nest variations among members of different castes. Two different haplotypes (cryptic species of S. saevissima were clearly identified, one presenting a predominant combination of the venom alkaloids cis- and trans-2-methyl-6-undecylpiperidine with the cuticular hydrocarbons C23, 3-Me-C23, 10-C25 : 1, C25, and 3-Me-C25, and the other a predominant combination of cis- and trans-2-methyl-6-tridecenylpiperidine with predominance of 12-C25 : 1, C25, 11-Me-C25, 3-Me-C25, 13-C27 : 1, C27, and 13-Me-C27. Intranest variations revealed that the proportions among these compounds varied sensibly among workers of different sizes, gynes, and males (no alkaloids were detected in the latter. Larva contained vestiges of the same compounds. The recorded chemical profiles are quite different from previous reports with S. saevissima samples from São Paulo. The finds thus support other recent claims that S. saevissima includes cryptic species; the study, moreover, adds the find that they can occur in the same geographical location.

  17. Fast and flexible: argentine ants recruit from nearby trails.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana P Flanagan

    Full Text Available Argentine ants (Linepithema humile live in groups of nests connected by trails to each other and to stable food sources. In a field study, we investigated whether some ants recruit directly from established, persistent trails to food sources, thus accelerating food collection. Our results indicate that Argentine ants recruit nestmates to food directly from persistent trails, and that the exponential increase in the arrival rate of ants at baits is faster than would be possible if recruited ants traveled from distant nests. Once ants find a new food source, they walk back and forth between the bait and sometimes share food by trophallaxis with nestmates on the trail. Recruiting ants from nearby persistent trails creates a dynamic circuit, like those found in other distributed systems, which facilitates a quick response to changes in available resources.

  18. Host ant independent oviposition in the parasitic butterfly Maculinea alcon

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fürst, Matthias A; Nash, David Richard

    2010-01-01

    to host-ant nests and non-host-ant nests, and the number and position of eggs attached were assessed. Our results show no evidence for host-ant-based oviposition in M. alcon, but support an oviposition strategy based on plant characteristics. This suggests that careful management of host-ant distribution......Parasitic Maculinea alcon butterflies can only develop in nests of a subset of available Myrmica ant species, so female butterflies have been hypothesized to preferentially lay eggs on plants close to colonies of the correct host ants. Previous correlational investigations of host......-ant-dependent oviposition in this and other Maculinea species have, however, shown equivocal results, leading to a long-term controversy over support for this hypothesis. We therefore conducted a controlled field experiment to study the egg-laying behaviour of M. alcon. Matched potted Gentiana plants were set out close...

  19. Exploring with PAM: Prospecting ANTS Missions for Solar System Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Rilee, M. L.; Curtis, S. A.

    2003-01-01

    ANTS (Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm), a large (1000 member) swarm of nano to picoclass (10 to 1 kg) totally autonomous spacecraft, are being developed as a NASA advanced mission concept. ANTS, based on a hierarchical insect social order, use an evolvable, self-similar, hierarchical neural system in which individual spacecraft represent the highest level nodes. ANTS uses swarm intelligence attained through collective, cooperative interactions of the nodes at all levels of the system. At the highest levels this can take the form of cooperative, collective behavior among the individual spacecraft in a very large constellation. The ANTS neural architecture is designed for totally autonomous operation of complex systems including spacecraft constellations. The ANTS (Autonomous Nano Technology Swarm) concept has a number of possible applications. A version of ANTS designed for surveying and determining the resource potential of the asteroid belt, called PAM (Prospecting ANTS Mission), is examined here.

  20. Fast and flexible: argentine ants recruit from nearby trails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanagan, Tatiana P; Pinter-Wollman, Noa M; Moses, Melanie E; Gordon, Deborah M

    2013-01-01

    Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) live in groups of nests connected by trails to each other and to stable food sources. In a field study, we investigated whether some ants recruit directly from established, persistent trails to food sources, thus accelerating food collection. Our results indicate that Argentine ants recruit nestmates to food directly from persistent trails, and that the exponential increase in the arrival rate of ants at baits is faster than would be possible if recruited ants traveled from distant nests. Once ants find a new food source, they walk back and forth between the bait and sometimes share food by trophallaxis with nestmates on the trail. Recruiting ants from nearby persistent trails creates a dynamic circuit, like those found in other distributed systems, which facilitates a quick response to changes in available resources.

  1. The diversity and biogeography of late Pleistocene birds from the lowland Neotropics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steadman, David W.; Oswald, Jessica A.; Rincón, Ascanio D.

    2015-05-01

    The Neotropical lowlands sustain the world's richest bird communities, yet little that we know about their history is based on paleontology. Fossils afford a way to investigate distributional shifts in individual species, and thus improve our understanding of long-term change in Neotropical bird communities. We report a species-rich avian fossil sample from a late Pleistocene tar seep (Mene de Inciarte) in northwestern Venezuela. A mere 175 identified fossils from Mene de Inciarte represent 73 species of birds, among which six are extinct, and eight others no longer occur within 100 km. These 14 species consist mainly of ducks (Anatidae), snipe (Scolopacidae), vultures/condors (Vulturidae), hawks/eagles (Accipitridae), and blackbirds (Icteridae). Neotropical bird communities were richer in the late Pleistocene than today; their considerable extinction may be related to collapse of the large mammal fauna at that time. The species assemblage at Mene de Inciarte suggests that biogeographic patterns, even at continental scales, have been remarkably labile over short geological time frames. Mene de Inciarte is but one of 300 + tar seeps in Venezuela, only two of which have been explored for fossils. We may be on the cusp of an exciting new era of avian paleontology in the Neotropics.

  2. High abundance of neotropical drosophilids (Diptera: Drosophilidae) in four cultivated areas of central Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emerich, Pp; Valadão, H; Silva, Jrvp; Tidon, R

    2012-04-01

    The drosophilid assemblages of four cultivated areas (soy, bean, corn, and orange plantations) grown in the core of the Neotropical region were analyzed by comparing their abundances and compositions. The collections, which were gathered using 38 banana traps, captured 12,560 drosophilids, including nine Neotropical and six exotic species. Most of the flies were collected in the bean (43%) and soy (42%) fields. The composition and relative abundance of species also varied among cultivated areas, with orange orchards presenting the highest relative abundance of exotics due to the dominance of the Afrotropical Zaprionus indianus (Gupta). Crop plantations were dominated by a Neotropical species, Drosophila cardini (Sturtevant), which has been shown to be well adapted to dry and disturbed environments. We discuss the drosophilid assemblages of the cultivated areas, comparing them with assemblages from neighbor urban and natural environments. The low drosophilid richness found in this study is similar to the richness found in urban environments and lower than the drosophilid richness of forests, supporting a pattern already known for other taxa. The high abundance of drosophilids in cultivated areas, as well as the dominance of a Neotropical species (D. cardini) in the crop assemblages, was a surprising result.

  3. Stopover ecology of neotropical migrants in central Veracruz, México

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernesto Ruelas Inzunza; Stephen W. Hoffman; Laurie J. Goodrich

    2005-01-01

    Available information on the ecology of neotropical migrants during the winter season and especially during migration is far behind the existing knowledge of birds during the breeding season. This paper presents a stopover ecology case study. We document the occurrence of species, outline the prevailing weather patterns during spring and fall migration seasons, and...

  4. Effects of livestock grazing on neotropical migratory landbirds in western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carl E. Bock; Victoria A. Saab; Terrell D. Rich; David S. Dobkin

    1993-01-01

    Livestock grazing is a widespread and important influence on neotropical migratory birds in four major ecosystems in western North America: grasslands of the Great Plains and Southwest, riparian woodlands, Intermountain shrubsteppe, and open coniferous forests. We have reviewed available literature on avian responses to grazing in these habitats. Among 35 plains...

  5. Using landscape metrics to model source habitat for Neotropical migrants in the midwestern U.S.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter T. Fauth; Eric J. Gustafson; Kerry N. Rabenold

    2000-01-01

    Size of a forest patch is a useful predictor of density and reproductive success of Neotropical migratory birds in much of eastern North America. Within these forested landscapes, large forest tracts appear to be sources-fragments in which surpluses of offspring are produced and can potentially colonize new fragments including woodlot sinks where reproduction fails to...

  6. A taxonomic revision of the Neotropical poison frog genus Ranitomeya (Amphibia: Dendrobatidae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brown, J.L.; Twomey, E.; Amézquita, A.; Souza, M.B.; Caldwell, J.P.; Lötters, S.; May, R.; Melo-Sampaio, P.R.; Mejía-Vargas, D.; Perez-Peña, P.; Pepper, M.; Poelman, E.H.; Sanchez-Rodriguez, M.; Summers, K.

    2011-01-01

    The Neotropical poison frog genus Ranitomeya is revised, resulting in one new genus, one new species, five synonymies and one species classified as nomen dubium. We present an expanded molecular phylogeny that contains 235 terminals, 104 of which are new to this study. Notable additions to this

  7. The species of the Neotropical genus Fractipons Townes, 1970 (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae, Cryptinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bordera, Santiago; González-Moreno, Alejandra

    2011-01-19

    In this paper, two new species of the Neotropical genus Fractipons Townes, 1970 (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) are described. A new diagnosis for the genus, a re-description of Fractipons cincticornis Townes, 1970 and a key to known species are provided. New distribution records for the genus now include Argentina, Costa Rica, Panama and Peru.

  8. Distributional patterns of the Neotropical genus Thecomyia Perty (Diptera, Sciomyzidae and phylogenetic support

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Ciprandi Pires

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Distributional patterns of the Neotropical genus Thecomyia Perty (Diptera, Sciomyzidae and phylogenetic support. The distributional pattern of the genus Thecomyia Perty, 1833 was defined using panbiogeographic tools, and analyzed based on the phylogeny of the group. This study sought to establish biogeographical homologies in the Neotropical region between different species of the genus, based on their distribution pattern and later corroboration through its phylogeny. Eight individual tracks and 16 generalized tracks were identified, established along nearly the entire swath of the Neotropics. Individual tracks are the basic units of a panbiogeographic study, and correspond to the hypothesis of minimum distribution of the organisms involved. The generalized tracks, obtained from the spatial congruence between two or more individual tracks, are important in the identification of smaller areas of endemism. Thus, we found evidence from the generalized tracks in support of previous classification for the Neotropical region. The Amazon domain is indicated as an area of outstanding importance in the diversification of the group, by the confluence of generalized tracks and biogeographic nodes in the region. Most of the generalized tracks and biogeographical nodes were congruent with the phylogenetic hypothesis of the genus, indicating support of the primary biogeographical homologies originally defined by the track analysis.

  9. Descriptions of two new species of Sphenorhina (Hemiptera, Cercopidae, Tomaspidinae from the Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andressa Paladini

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Description of two new species of Sphenorhina (Hemiptera, Cercopidae, Tomaspidinae from the Neotropical region. Two new species of Sphenorhina Amyot & Serville, S. pseudoboliviana SP. NOV: from Bolivia and S. plata SP. NOV: from Argentina are described and illustrated.

  10. Interspecific competition, predation, and the coexistence of three closely related neotropical armoured catfishes (Siluriformes - Callichthyidae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mol, J.H.A.

    1995-01-01

    Tropical ecosystems are renowned for their high biodiversity with many closely related species living together. Alpha diversity of tropical freshwater fishes is also extremely high, as exemplified by the cichlid fauna of the Great African lakes and the neotropical characins. Since

  11. New taxa, including three new genera show uniqueness of Neotropical Nepticulidae (Lepidoptera)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nieukerken, van E.J.; Doorenweerd, C.; Nishida, K.; Snyers, C.

    2016-01-01

    After finding distinct clades in a molecular phylogeny for Nepticulidae that could not be placed in any known genera and discovering clear apomorphic characters that define these clades, as well as a number of Neotropical species that could be placed in known genera but were undescribed, three new

  12. Do birds select habitat or food resources? Nearctic-neotropic migrants in northeastern Costa Rica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jared D. Wolfe; Matthew D. Johnson; C. John Ralph; R. Mark Brigham

    2014-01-01

    Nearctic-neotropic migrant birds need to replenish energy reserves during stopover periods to successfully complete their semiannual movements. In this study we used linear models to examine the habitat use of 11 migrant species in northeastern Costa Rica to better understand the influence of food and structural resources on the presence of birds during stopover...

  13. An interactive database for setting conservation priorities for western neotropical migrants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael F. Carter; Keith Barker

    1993-01-01

    We develop and explain a species ranking system for the states and physiographic regions of the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Program's West Working Group. The ranking criteria attempt to measure characteristics of species which make them vulnerable to extirpation, as well as assess the relative importance of different geographic and/or political areas...

  14. The specimens of Parulidae from the Neotropics in the collection of the Zoological Museum Amsterdam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Prins, Tineke G.

    1992-01-01

    The Parulidae form a group of little dainty birds with slender bills consisting of 126 species. The family is confined to the New World, the largest number of species and genera being found in North and Central America. Neotropical material of 35 species is represented in the collection of the

  15. An illustrated key to Neotropical species of the genus Meteorus Haliday ( Hymenoptera , Braconidae , Euphorinae )

    OpenAIRE

    Aguirre, Helmuth; de Almeida, Luis Felipe; Shaw, Scott Richard; Sarmiento, Carlos E.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract A comprehensive key for 75 species of Meteorus distributed across 15 Neotropical countries is presented. Eleven new species from Bolivia, Costa Rica and Ecuador are described: Meteorus albistigma , Meteorus carolae , Meteorus eurysaccavorus , Meteorus fallacavus , Meteorus flavistigma , Meteorus haimowitzi , Meteorus magnoculus , Meteorus martinezi , Meteorus microcavus , Meteorus noctuivorus and Meteorus orion . Expanded range distributions are recorded for Meteorus andreae , Meteor...

  16. Using pleometrosis (multiple queens) and pupae transplantation to boost weaver ant (Oecophylla smaragdina) colony growth in ant nurseries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim; Nielsen, Mogens Gissel; Peng, Renkang

    2011-01-01

    Weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) are increasingly being used for biocontrol and are targeted for future production of insect protein in ant farms. An efficient production of live ant colonies may facilitate the utilization of these ants but the production of mature colonies is hampered by the long...... and no transplantation. Thus, in ant nurseries the use of multiple queens during nest founding as well as transplantation of pupae from foreign colonies may be utilised to decrease the time it takes to produce a colony ready for implementation....

  17. Optic disc detection using ant colony optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dias, Marcy A.; Monteiro, Fernando C.

    2012-09-01

    The retinal fundus images are used in the treatment and diagnosis of several eye diseases, such as diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. This paper proposes a new method to detect the optic disc (OD) automatically, due to the fact that the knowledge of the OD location is essential to the automatic analysis of retinal images. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) is an optimization algorithm inspired by the foraging behaviour of some ant species that has been applied in image processing for edge detection. Recently, the ACO was used in fundus images to detect edges, and therefore, to segment the OD and other anatomical retinal structures. We present an algorithm for the detection of OD in the retina which takes advantage of the Gabor wavelet transform, entropy and ACO algorithm. Forty images of the retina from DRIVE database were used to evaluate the performance of our method.

  18. Atlantic forests to the all Americas: Biogeographical history and divergence times of Neotropical Ficus (Moraceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machado, Anderson Ferreira Pinto; Rønsted, Nina; Bruun-Lund, Sam; Pereira, Rodrigo Augusto Santinelo; Paganucci de Queiroz, Luciano

    2018-05-01

    Ficus (Moraceae) is well diversified in the Neotropics with two lineages inhabiting the wet forests of this region. The hemiepiphytes of section Americanae are the most diversified with c. 120 species, whereas section Pharmacosycea includes about 20 species mostly with a terrestrial habit. To reconstruct the biogeographical history and diversification of Ficus in the Americas, we produced a dated Bayesian phylogenetic hypothesis of Neotropical Ficus including two thirds of the species sequenced for five nuclear regions (At103, ETS, G3pdh, ITS/5.8S and Tpi). Ancestral range was estimated using all models available in Biogeobears and Binary State Speciation and Extinction analysis was used to evaluate the role of the initial habit and propagule size in diversification. The phylogenetic analyses resolved both Neotropical sections as monophyletic but the internal relationships between species in section Americanae remain unclear. Ficus started their diversification in the Neotropics between the Oligocene and Miocene. The genus experienced two bursts of diversification: in the middle Miocene and the Pliocene. Colonization events from the Amazon to adjacent areas coincide with the end of the Pebas system (10 Mya) and the connection of landmasses. Divergence of endemic species in the Atlantic forest is inferred to have happened after its isolation and the opening and consolidation of the Cerrado. Our results suggest a complex diversification in the Atlantic forest differing between postulated refuges and more instable areas in the South distribution of the forest. Finally the selection for initial hemiepiphytic habit and small to medium propagule size influenced the diversification and current distribution of the species at Neotropical forests marked by the historical instability and long-distance dispersal. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. A global database of ant species abundances

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gibb, H.; Dunn, R. R.; Sanders, N. J.; Grossman, B. F.; Photakis, M.; Abril, S.; Agosti, D.; Andersen, A. N.; Angulo, E.; Armbrecht, I.; Arnan, X.; Baccaro, F. B.; Bishop, T. R.; Boulay, R.; Brühl, C.; Castracani, C.; Cerdá, X.; Del Toro, I.; Delsinne, T.; Diaz, M.; Donoso, D. A.; Ellison, A. M.; Enríquez, M. L.; Fayle, Tom Maurice; Feener, D. H.; Fisher, B. L.; Fisher, R. N.; Fitzpatrick, M. C.; Gómez, C.; Gotelli, N. J.; Gove, A.; Grasso, D. A.; Groc, S.; Guenard, B.; Gunawardene, N.; Heterick, B.; Hoffmann, B.; Janda, Milan; Jenkins, C.; Kaspari, M.; Klimeš, Petr; Lach, L.; Laeger, T.; Lattke, J.; Leponce, M.; Lessard, J.-P.; Longino, J.; Lucky, A.; Luke, S. H.; Majer, J.; McGlynn, T. P.; Menke, S.; Mezger, D.; Mori, A.; Moses, Jimmy; Munyai, T. C.; Pacheco, R.; Paknia, O.; Pearce-Duvet, J.; Pfeiffer, M.; Philpott, S. M.; Resasco, J.; Retana, J.; Silva, R. R.; Sorger, M. D.; Souza, J.; Suarez, A.; Tista, M.; Vasconcelos, H. L.; Vonshak, M.; Weisser, M. D.; Yates, M.; Parr, C. L.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 98, č. 3 (2017), s. 883-884 ISSN 0012-9658 R&D Projects: GA ČR GB14-36098G; GA ČR GAP505/12/2467; GA ČR GPP505/12/P875 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : abundance * ants * database Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 4.809, year: 2016 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ecy.1682/abstract

  20. Public goods dilemma in asexual ant societies

    OpenAIRE

    Dobata, Shigeto; Tsuji, Kazuki

    2013-01-01

    This study reports experimental evidence for the “public goods dilemma” between cooperators and cheaters in an asexual ant society, in which cheating is always more rewarding for individuals but cooperation at the cost of individual fitness leads to better performance of groups. Although this dilemma provides the basic principle of social evolution, its experimental demonstration with underlying genetics and fitness evaluation for both cooperators and cheaters still lacks in societies other t...

  1. Ant colony optimization and constraint programming

    CERN Document Server

    Solnon, Christine

    2013-01-01

    Ant colony optimization is a metaheuristic which has been successfully applied to a wide range of combinatorial optimization problems. The author describes this metaheuristic and studies its efficiency for solving some hard combinatorial problems, with a specific focus on constraint programming. The text is organized into three parts. The first part introduces constraint programming, which provides high level features to declaratively model problems by means of constraints. It describes the main existing approaches for solving constraint satisfaction problems, including complete tree search

  2. Precision Rescue Behavior in North American Ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine Taylor

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Altruistic behavior, in which one individual provides aid to another at some cost to itself, is well documented. However, some species engage in a form of altruism, called rescue, that places the altruist in immediate danger. Here we investigate one such example, namely rescuing victims captured by predators. In a field experiment with two North American ant species, Tetramorium sp. E and Prenolepis imparis, individuals were held in artificial snares simulating capture. T. sp. E, but not P. imparis, exhibited digging, pulling, and snare biting, the latter precisely targeted to the object binding the victim. These results are the first to document precision rescue in a North American ant species; moreover, unlike rescue in other ants, T. sp. E rescues conspecifics from different colonies, mirroring their atypical social behavior, namely the lack of aggression between non-nestmate (heterocolonial conspecifics. In a second, observational study designed to demonstrate rescue from an actual predator, T. sp. E victims were dropped into an antlion's pit and the behavior of a single rescuer was observed. Results showed that T. sp. E not only attempted to release the victim, but also risked attacking the predator, suggesting that precision rescue may play an important role in this species' antipredator behavior.

  3. El periodista, ante la espiral de silencio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Fermín Galindo Arranz

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available La percepción de la profesión periodística y de su influencia cambia mucho a lo largo del tiempo, de las coyunturas históricas y de los diferentes países y sociedades en los que desempeñan su labor. En un contexto mundial, la gravedad de las situaciones de riesgo periodístico se encuadran en situaciones políticas, económicas o sociales también conflictivas; es entonces cuando se suele reproducir con facilidad en la opinión pública el fenómeno de la espiral del silencio, ante el que inevitablemente se sitúa el periodista. Por definición, el trabajo del periodista consiste en ser portavoz de las novedades que se producen, en dar informaciones y emitir opiniones en la esfera pública, se tiene que situar, por tanto, de forma individual y notoriamente pública ante los fenómenos de espiral de silencio que puedan producirse en la opinión pública. Antonio Tabucchi nos presenta en su novela "Sostiene Pereira" un ejemplo magnífico del dilema del periodista ante este tipo de situaciones.

  4. Recognition of social identity in ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick eBos

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Recognizing the identity of others, from the individual to the group level, is a hallmark of society. Ants, and other social insects, have evolved advanced societies characterized by efficient social recognition systems. Colony identity is mediated by colony specific signature mixtures, a blend of hydrocarbons present on the cuticle of every individual (the label. Recognition occurs when an ant encounters another individual, and compares the label it perceives to an internal representation of its own colony odor (the template. A mismatch between label and template leads to rejection of the encountered individual. Although advances have been made in our understanding of how the label is produced and acquired, contradictory evidence exists about information processing of recognition cues. Here, we review the literature on template acquisition in ants and address how and when the template is formed, where in the nervous system it is localized, and the possible role of learning. We combine seemingly contradictory evidence in to a novel, parsimonious theory for the information processing of nestmate recognition cues.

  5. Temporal dynamics and leaf trait variability in Neotropical dry forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hesketh, Michael Sean

    This thesis explores the variability of leaf traits resulting from changes in season, ecosystem successional stage, and site characteristics. In chapter two, I present a review of the use of remote sensing analysis for the evaluation of Neotropical dry forests. Here, I stress the conclusion, drawn from studies on land cover characterization, biodiversity assessment, and evaluation of forest structural characteristics, that addressing temporal variability in spectral properties is an essential element in the monitoring of these ecosystems. Chapter three describes the effect of wet-dry seasonality on spectral classification of tree and liana species. Highly accurate classification (> 80%) was possible using data from either the wet or dry season. However, this accuracy decreased by a factor of ten when data from the wet season was classified using an algorithm trained on the dry, or vice versa. I also address the potential creation of a spectral taxonomy of species, but found that any clustering based on spectral properties resulted in markedly different arrangements in the wet and dry seasons. In chapter 4, I address the variation present in both physical and spectral leaf traits according to changes in forest successional stage at dry forest sites in Mexico and Costa Rica. I found significant differences in leaf traits between successional stages, but more strongly so in Costa Rica. This variability deceased the accuracy of spectral classification of tree species by a factor of four when classifying data using an algorithm trained on a different successional stage. Chapter 5 shows the influence of seasonality and succession on trait variability in Mexico. Differences in leaf traits between successional stages were found to be greater during the dry season, but were sufficient in both seasons to negatively influence spectral classification of tree species. Throughout this thesis, I show clear and unambiguous evidence of the variability of key physical and spectral

  6. Selectivity of fish ladders: a bottleneck in Neotropical fish movement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Sérgio Agostinho

    Full Text Available Although dozens of fish ladders have been constructed at dams of Brazilian reservoirs, there are few studies evaluating their efficiency as a tool for the conservation of Neotropical ichthyofauna, especially for migratory species. Therefore, the present study evaluated the selectivity of the species that entered and ascended the fish ladder located next to Lajeado Dam (Luis Eduardo Magalhães Hydroelectric Power Plant on the Tocantins River. Samples were taken monthly from November, 2002 through October, 2003, in the resting pools of the ladder, using cast nets, and in the downstream stretch, using gillnets. The selectivity of the ladder in attracting fish was evaluated by comparing the occurrence, relative abundance, dominance and the congruence of abundance ranks of migratory and non-migratory species in the ladder and in the stretch of river immediately downstream. Species richness and fish abundance in the resting pools were used to evaluate selectivity along the ladder. The effects on selectivity by temporal variations in water level downriver and maximum flow velocity in the fish ladder were also analyzed. Out of the 130 species recorded downriver, 62.3% were caught in the ladder, and migratory species were clearly favored. However, more than 2/3 of the catch belonged to only three species (Rhaphiodon vulpinus, Psectrogaster amazonica and Oxydoras niger. Although the majority of the species that entered the ladder were able to reach its top, there was a sharp reduction in abundance of individuals towards the top. Temporal variations in the water level below the dam influenced richness and abundance of fish concentrated downstream and in the ladder, with lower values during periods of low water. In the ladder, a maximum flow velocity of 2.3 m/s, although also selective, proved to be more appropriate for fish ascension than a velocity of 2.8 m/s. It was concluded that the entry and ascension of the fish in the ladder were not congruent with

  7. Arboreous vegetation of an alluvial riparian forest and their soil relations: Porto Rico island, Paraná river, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Campos João Batista

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available The dynamics of alluvial deposits in floodplains forms islands and sandbanks. Deposits frequently accumulate at the river margins and on islands with consequent side growths. One of these sandbanks which started to form in 1952 annexed an area of 12.4ha to the Porto Rico island (53masculine15?W and 22masculine45?S. At present a forest fragment of approximately 2.0 ha exists in this place. The structural analysis of arboreous vegetation of this fragment showed a floristic gradient related to the physical and chemical variations of the substratum. High density of pioneer species associated to the absence of recruitment of new individuals of these and other successional categories indicated that the forest was impaired in its succession process. This fact could be associated with constant disturbances caused by cattle in the area.

  8. Floristic and structure of the shrub-arboreal component of a remnant of cerrado sensustricto, Gurupi, Tocantins, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Aurélio Aguiar

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective was to characterize a floristic and phytosociology of a fragment of cerrado sensu stricto, located in Gurupi, Tocantins. The study was carried out in the legal Reserve of the experimental farm of the Federal University of Tocantins, Campus of Gurupi, Tocantins, Brazil. Five porcelains of 20x50m were implanted, totaling 5000sqm and all compostations with a circumference greater than or equal to 10 cm, at 0 cm at the soil level (CAS were implanted. Foramaler 906 aphid shrub-arboreal belonging to 42 families, 102 species and 78 genera. The families that stood out in number of individuals, frequency, dominance were Myrtacea, Vochystaceae, Burseraceae and Fabaceae, among the indications of the main beings Myrcia fallax (Rich DC, Protium heptaphyllum (Aubl Marchand and Qualea multiflora Mart. The diversity index of Shannon (H ' was 3.70 and equability J'0,80, being considered for the cerrado region.

  9. Arboreal Day Geckos (Phelsuma madagascariensis Differentially Modulate Fore- and Hind Limb Kinematics in Response to Changes in Habitat Structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingna V Zhuang

    Full Text Available By using adhesion, geckos can move through incredibly challenging habitats. However, continually changing terrain may necessitate modulation of the adhesive apparatus in order to maximize its effectiveness over a range of challenges. Behaviorally modulating how the adhesive system is applied can occur by altering the alignment of the foot relative to the long axis of the body and/or the angles between the digits (interdigital angle. Given the directionality of the adhesive system, geckos likely vary the application of the system via these mechanisms as they run. We quantified 3D movements (using high-speed video of the day gecko, Phelsuma madagascariensis, running on a range of ecologically relevant inclines (0°, 45°, 90° and perch diameters (1.5 cm, 10 cm and broad. We measured the instantaneous sum of interdigital angles and foot alignment relative to the body, as well as other kinematic variables, throughout each stride and across treatments. Modulation of foot alignment at 45° and 90° was similar between the forelimb and hind limb, but differed at 0°, suggesting that P. madagascariensis is able to exert an adhesive force using multiple strategies. Both the sum of interdigital angles and alignment in the fore- and hind foot were modulated. Differences in modulation between the limbs are likely related to the underlying morphology. The modulation of interdigital angle and foot alignment suggests that aspects other than the mechanism of adhesion, such as joint morphology, are important for arboreal movement in geckos. Our study of foot usage in arboreal locomotion reveals patterns that may be widespread across pad-bearing lizards. In addition to understanding the constraints exerted by the adhesive apparatus, we highlight how biomechanical traits may respond to the evolution of novel adaptations and morphologies.

  10. Arboreal Day Geckos (Phelsuma madagascariensis) Differentially Modulate Fore- and Hind Limb Kinematics in Response to Changes in Habitat Structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Mingna V; Higham, Timothy E

    2016-01-01

    By using adhesion, geckos can move through incredibly challenging habitats. However, continually changing terrain may necessitate modulation of the adhesive apparatus in order to maximize its effectiveness over a range of challenges. Behaviorally modulating how the adhesive system is applied can occur by altering the alignment of the foot relative to the long axis of the body and/or the angles between the digits (interdigital angle). Given the directionality of the adhesive system, geckos likely vary the application of the system via these mechanisms as they run. We quantified 3D movements (using high-speed video) of the day gecko, Phelsuma madagascariensis, running on a range of ecologically relevant inclines (0°, 45°, 90°) and perch diameters (1.5 cm, 10 cm and broad). We measured the instantaneous sum of interdigital angles and foot alignment relative to the body, as well as other kinematic variables, throughout each stride and across treatments. Modulation of foot alignment at 45° and 90° was similar between the forelimb and hind limb, but differed at 0°, suggesting that P. madagascariensis is able to exert an adhesive force using multiple strategies. Both the sum of interdigital angles and alignment in the fore- and hind foot were modulated. Differences in modulation between the limbs are likely related to the underlying morphology. The modulation of interdigital angle and foot alignment suggests that aspects other than the mechanism of adhesion, such as joint morphology, are important for arboreal movement in geckos. Our study of foot usage in arboreal locomotion reveals patterns that may be widespread across pad-bearing lizards. In addition to understanding the constraints exerted by the adhesive apparatus, we highlight how biomechanical traits may respond to the evolution of novel adaptations and morphologies.

  11. The invasive ant, Solenopsis invicta, reduces herpetofauna richness and abundance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Craig R.; Birge, Hannah E.; Slater, J.; Wiggers, E.

    2017-01-01

    Amphibians and reptiles are declining globally. One potential cause of this decline includes impacts resulting from co-occurrence with non-native red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta. Although a growing body of anecdotal and observational evidence from laboratory experiments supports this hypothesis, there remains a lack of field scale manipulations testing the effect of fire ants on reptile and amphibian communities. We addressed this gap by measuring reptile and amphibian (“herpetofauna”) community response to successful fire ant reductions over the course of 2 years following hydramethylnon application to five 100–200 ha plots in southeastern coastal South Carolina. By assessing changes in relative abundance and species richness of herpetofauna in response to fire ant reductions, we were able to assess whether some species were particularly vulnerable to fire ant presence, and whether this sensitivity manifested at the community level. We found that herpetofauna abundance and species richness responded positively to fire ant reductions. Our results document that even moderate populations of red imported fire ants decrease both the abundance and diversity of herpetofauna. Given global herpetofauna population declines and continued spread of fire ants, there is urgency to understand the impacts of fire ants beyond anecdotal and singles species studies. Our results provides the first community level investigation addressing these dynamics, by manipulating fire ant abundance to reveal a response in herpetofauna species abundance and richness.

  12. Predaceous ants, beach replenishment, and nest placement by sea turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wetterer, James K; Wood, Lawrence D; Johnson, Chris; Krahe, Holly; Fitchett, Stephanie

    2007-10-01

    Ants known for attacking and killing hatchling birds and reptiles include the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren), tropical fire ant [Solenopsis geminata (Fabr.)], and little fire ant [Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger)]. We tested whether sea turtle nest placement influenced exposure to predaceous ants. In 2000 and 2001, we surveyed ants along a Florida beach where green turtles (Chelonia mydas L.), leatherbacks (Dermochelys coriacea Vandelli), and loggerheads (Caretta caretta L.) nest. Part of the beach was artificially replenished between our two surveys. As a result, mean beach width experienced by nesting turtles differed greatly between the two nesting seasons. We surveyed 1,548 sea turtle nests (2000: 909 nests; 2001: 639 nests) and found 22 ant species. S. invicta was by far the most common species (on 431 nests); S. geminata and W. auropunctata were uncommon (on 3 and 16 nests, respectively). In 2000, 62.5% of nests had ants present (35.9% with S. invicta), but in 2001, only 30.5% of the nests had ants present (16.4% with S. invicta). Turtle nests closer to dune vegetation had significantly greater exposure to ants. Differences in ant presence on turtle nests between years and among turtle species were closely related to differences in nest placement relative to dune vegetation. Beach replenishment significantly lowered exposure of nests to ants because on the wider beaches turtles nested farther from the dune vegetation. Selective pressures on nesting sea turtles are altered both by the presence of predaceous ants and the practice of beach replenishment.

  13. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Rachelle M. M.; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A.; Jones, Tappey H.; Nash, David R.; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2013-01-01

    The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit from their costly guest ants behaving as a functional soldier caste to meet lethal threats from agro-predator raiders. The fundamentally different life histories of the agro-predators and guest ants appear to facilitate their coexistence in a negative frequency-dependent manner. Because a guest ant colony is committed for life to a single host colony, the guests would harm their own interests by not defending the host that they continue to exploit. This conditional mutualism is analogous to chronic sickle cell anemia enhancing the resistance to malaria and to episodes in human history when mercenary city defenders offered either net benefits or imposed net costs, depending on the level of threat from invading armies. PMID:24019482

  14. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Rachelle M M; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A; Jones, Tappey H; Nash, David R; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2013-09-24

    The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit from their costly guest ants behaving as a functional soldier caste to meet lethal threats from agro-predator raiders. The fundamentally different life histories of the agro-predators and guest ants appear to facilitate their coexistence in a negative frequency-dependent manner. Because a guest ant colony is committed for life to a single host colony, the guests would harm their own interests by not defending the host that they continue to exploit. This conditional mutualism is analogous to chronic sickle cell anemia enhancing the resistance to malaria and to episodes in human history when mercenary city defenders offered either net benefits or imposed net costs, depending on the level of threat from invading armies.

  15. New phytotoxic diterpenoids from Vellozia gigantea (Velloziaceae), an endemic neotropical plant living in the endangered Brazilian biome Rupestrian grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vellozia gigantea is a rare, ancient and endemic neotropical plant present in the Brazilian Rupestrian grasslands. The dichloromethane extract of V. gigantea adventitious roots was phytotoxic against Lactuca sativa, Agrostis stolonifera and Lemna paucicostata, and showed larvicidal activity against ...

  16. Review of the Neotropical species of the family Pterophoridae, part I: Ochyroticinae, Deuterocopinae, Pterophorinae (Platyptiliini, Exelastini, Oxyptilini) (Lepidoptera)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gielis, C.

    2006-01-01

    The Pterophoridae (Ochyroticinae, Deuterocopinae, Pterophorinae (Tribus: Platyptiliini, Exelastini, Oxyptilini)) species of the Neotropical fauna are reviewed. The species are redescribed. Moths are illustrated in colour for the first time, their genitalia are illustrated in line drawings. The

  17. When invasive ants meet: effects of outbreeding on queen performance in the tramp ant Cardiocondyla itsukii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinze, Jürgen; Frohschammer, Sabine; Bernadou, Abel

    2017-08-18

    Most disturbed habitats in the tropics and subtropics harbor numerous species of invasive ants, and occasionally the same species has been introduced repeatedly from multiple geographical sources. We examined how experimental crossbreeding between sexuals from different populations affects the fitness of queens of the tramp ant Cardiocondyla itsukii, which is widely distributed in Asia and the Pacific Islands. Eggs laid by queens that mated with nestmate males had a higher hatching rate than eggs laid by queens mated to males from neighboring (Hawaii × Kauai) or distant introduced populations (Hawaii/Kauai × Okinawa). Furthermore, inbreeding queens had a longer lifespan and produced a less female-biased offspring sex ratio than queens from allopatric mating. This suggests that the genetic divergence between different source populations may already be so large that in case of multiple invasions eventual crossbreeding might negatively affect the fitness of tramp ants. © 2017 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  18. The legacy of logging--estimating arboreal lichen occurrence in a boreal multiple-use landscape on a two century scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horstkotte, Tim; Moen, Jon; Lämås, Tomas; Helle, Timo

    2011-01-01

    In northern Sweden, the availability of arboreal lichens (Bryoria fuscescens, Alectoria sarmentosa) as winter grazing resources is an important element in reindeer husbandry. With the industrialization of forestry, forests rich in arboreal lichens have diminished considerably. Here, we analyze how forestry has impacted lichen availability from the 1920's to the present day and model its future development assuming different forest management scenarios.We recorded the current occurrence of B. fuscescens in 144 sampling plots, stratified by forest age class and dominant tree species in a 26,600 ha boreal forest landscape that is used for both reindeer herding and forestry. Lichen abundance was visually estimated in four classes: none, sparse, moderate and abundant. A binary logistic model using forest age as the independent variable was developed to predict the probability of lichens being present. Using this model, we found that lichens were present in stands that are at least 63 years old. Because of the relative paucity of stands rich in arboreal lichens, it was not possible to reliably determine how age affects the variation in abundance of older forest stands. The historical development of forests where arboreal lichens could potentially occur was studied using historic forestry records dating back 80 years. Between 1926 and the present day, forestry has reduced the cover of forests older than 60 years from 84% to 34%. The likely future spatial coverage of these stands over the next 120 years was estimated for two different management scenarios and an unmanaged reference scenario, using the Heureka strategic planning program. Under both the "business as usual" scenario and that involving more intensive forestry, continued decreases in lichen availability are projected. Our results emphasize the importance of alternative forestry practices, such as prolonged rotation periods, to increase the availability of arboreal lichens as a grazing resource for reindeer.

  19. The legacy of logging--estimating arboreal lichen occurrence in a boreal multiple-use landscape on a two century scale.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim Horstkotte

    Full Text Available In northern Sweden, the availability of arboreal lichens (Bryoria fuscescens, Alectoria sarmentosa as winter grazing resources is an important element in reindeer husbandry. With the industrialization of forestry, forests rich in arboreal lichens have diminished considerably. Here, we analyze how forestry has impacted lichen availability from the 1920's to the present day and model its future development assuming different forest management scenarios.We recorded the current occurrence of B. fuscescens in 144 sampling plots, stratified by forest age class and dominant tree species in a 26,600 ha boreal forest landscape that is used for both reindeer herding and forestry. Lichen abundance was visually estimated in four classes: none, sparse, moderate and abundant. A binary logistic model using forest age as the independent variable was developed to predict the probability of lichens being present. Using this model, we found that lichens were present in stands that are at least 63 years old. Because of the relative paucity of stands rich in arboreal lichens, it was not possible to reliably determine how age affects the variation in abundance of older forest stands. The historical development of forests where arboreal lichens could potentially occur was studied using historic forestry records dating back 80 years. Between 1926 and the present day, forestry has reduced the cover of forests older than 60 years from 84% to 34%. The likely future spatial coverage of these stands over the next 120 years was estimated for two different management scenarios and an unmanaged reference scenario, using the Heureka strategic planning program. Under both the "business as usual" scenario and that involving more intensive forestry, continued decreases in lichen availability are projected. Our results emphasize the importance of alternative forestry practices, such as prolonged rotation periods, to increase the availability of arboreal lichens as a grazing

  20. The Legacy of Logging—Estimating Arboreal Lichen Occurrence in a Boreal Multiple-Use Landscape on a Two Century Scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horstkotte, Tim; Moen, Jon; Lämås, Tomas; Helle, Timo

    2011-01-01

    In northern Sweden, the availability of arboreal lichens (Bryoria fuscescens, Alectoria sarmentosa) as winter grazing resources is an important element in reindeer husbandry. With the industrialization of forestry, forests rich in arboreal lichens have diminished considerably. Here, we analyze how forestry has impacted lichen availability from the 1920's to the present day and model its future development assuming different forest management scenarios. We recorded the current occurrence of B. fuscescens in 144 sampling plots, stratified by forest age class and dominant tree species in a 26,600 ha boreal forest landscape that is used for both reindeer herding and forestry. Lichen abundance was visually estimated in four classes: none, sparse, moderate and abundant. A binary logistic model using forest age as the independent variable was developed to predict the probability of lichens being present. Using this model, we found that lichens were present in stands that are at least 63 years old. Because of the relative paucity of stands rich in arboreal lichens, it was not possible to reliably determine how age affects the variation in abundance of older forest stands. The historical development of forests where arboreal lichens could potentially occur was studied using historic forestry records dating back 80 years. Between 1926 and the present day, forestry has reduced the cover of forests older than 60 years from 84% to 34%. The likely future spatial coverage of these stands over the next 120 years was estimated for two different management scenarios and an unmanaged reference scenario, using the Heureka strategic planning program. Under both the “business as usual” scenario and that involving more intensive forestry, continued decreases in lichen availability are projected. Our results emphasize the importance of alternative forestry practices, such as prolonged rotation periods, to increase the availability of arboreal lichens as a grazing resource for reindeer

  1. Insights into the evolution, biogeography and natural history of the acorn ants, genus Temnothorax Mayr (hymenoptera: Formicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prebus, Matthew

    2017-12-13

    Temnothorax (Formicidae: Myrmicinae) is a diverse genus of ants found in a broad spectrum of ecosystems across the northern hemisphere. These diminutive ants have long served as models for social insect behavior, leading to discoveries about social learning and inspiring hypotheses about the process of speciation and the evolution of social parasitism. This genus is highly morphologically and behaviorally diverse, and this has caused a great deal of taxonomic confusion in recent years. Past efforts to estimate the phylogeny of this genus have been limited in taxonomic scope, leaving the broader evolutionary patterns in Temnothorax unclear. To establish the monophyly of Temnothorax, resolve the evolutionary relationships, reconstruct the historical biogeography and investigate trends in the evolution of key traits, I generated, assembled, and analyzed two molecular datasets: a traditional multi-locus Sanger sequencing dataset, and an ultra-conserved element (UCE) dataset. Using maximum likelihood, Bayesian, and summary-coalescent based approaches, I analyzed 22 data subsets consisting of 103 ingroup taxa and a maximum of 1.8 million base pairs in 2485 loci. The results of this study suggest an origin of Temnothorax at the Eocene-Oligocene transition, concerted transitions to arboreal nesting habits in several clades during the Oligocene, coinciding with ancient global cooling, and several convergent origins of social parasitism in the Miocene and Pliocene. As with other Holarctic taxa, Temnothorax has a history of migration across Beringia during the Miocene. Temnothorax is corroborated as a natural group, and the notion that many of the historical subgeneric and species group concepts are artificial is reinforced. The strict form of Emery's Rule, in which a socially parasitic species is sister to its host species, is not well supported in Temnothorax.

  2. Food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Flores, Rocío Vianey; Aguirre, Armando; Anjos, Diego V.; Neves, Frederico S.; Campos, Ricardo I.; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2018-02-01

    In this study, we conducted a series of experiments in a population of Vachellia constricta (Fabaceae) in the arid Tehuacan-Cuicatláan valley, Mexico, in order to evaluate if the food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions. Using an experiment with artificial nectaries, we observed that ants foraging on food sources with higher concentration of sugar are quicker in finding and attacking potential herbivorous insects. More specifically, we found that the same ant species may increase their defence effectiveness according to the quality of food available. These findings indicate that ant effectiveness in plant protection is context-dependent and may vary according to specific individual characteristics of plants. In addition, we showed that competitively superior ant species tend to dominate plants in periods with high nectar activity, emphasizing the role of the dominance hierarchy structuring ant-plant interactions. However, when high sugar food sources were experimentally available ad libitum, the nocturnal and competitively superior ant species, Camponotus atriceps, did not dominate the artificial nectaries during the day possibly due to limitation of its thermal tolerance. Therefore, temporal niche partitioning may be allowing the coexistence of two dominant ant species (Camponotus rubritorax during the day and C. atriceps at night) on V. constricta. Our findings indicate that the quality of the food source, and temporal shifts in ant dominance are key factors which structure the biotic plant defences in an arid environment.

  3. Just follow your nose: homing by olfactory cues in ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steck, Kathrin

    2012-04-01

    How is an ant-equipped with a brain that barely exceeds the size of a pinhead-capable of achieving navigational marvels? Even though evidences suggest that navigation is a multimodal process, ants heavily depend on olfactory cues-of pheromonal and non-pheromonal nature-for foraging and orientation. Recent studies have directed their attention to the efficiency of pheromone trail networks. Advances in neurophysiological techniques make it possible to investigate trail pheromone processing in the ant's brain. In addition to relying on pheromone odours, ants also make use of volatiles emanating from the nest surroundings. Deposited in the vicinity of the nest, these home-range markings help the ants to home after a foraging run. Furthermore, olfactory landmarks associated with the nest enhance ants' homing abilities. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Ant tending influences soldier production in a social aphid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shingleton, A W; Foster, W A

    2000-09-22

    The aphid Pseudoregma sundanica (Van der Goot) (Homoptera: Aphididae) has two defence strategies. It is obligatorily tended by various species of ant and also produces sterile soldiers. We investigated how they allocate their investment in these two strategies. We measured the size, number of soldiers, number and species of tending ant, and number and species of predators in P. sundanica populations. We found that the level of ant tending correlated negatively with soldier investment in P. sundanica. The species of tending ant also influenced soldier investment. We excluded ants from aphid populations and recorded changes in population size and structure over four weeks. Ant exclusion led to population decline and extinction. At the same time, surviving populations showed a significant increase in soldier investment. The data demonstrate that social aphids can adjust their investment in soldiers in direct response to environmental change.

  5. Revision of the fungus-farming ant genus Sericomyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Ješovnik

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The genus Sericomyrmex Mayr (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Attini is a Neotropical group of fungus-farming ants known for its problematic taxonomy, caused by low morphological variability across the species, vague and old species descriptions, and an outdated and incomplete key published in 1916. Recent molecular studies revealed that Sericomyrmex is the product of a rapid recent radiation, with a divergence date of 4.3 million years ago. Here we present a comprehensive taxonomic revision of the genus Sericomyrmex based on morphology and a recently published molecular phylogeny. We discuss and illustrate morphological characters for Sericomyrmex workers, males, queens, and larvae. We report 18 standard morphological measurements and 5 indices for 529 workers, 50 queens, and 39 males, which we employ in morphometric analyses. The revised genus Sericomyrmex comprises eleven species, including three new species, here described as S. maravalhas sp. n., S. radioheadi sp. n., and S. saramama sp. n. We also redescribe S. amabilis Wheeler, S. bondari Borgmeier, S. lutzi Wheeler, S. mayri Forel, S. opacus Mayr, S. parvulus Forel, S. saussurei Emery, and S. scrobifer Forel. The number of recognized species (11 is lower than the previously recognized 19 species and 3 subspecies. The following species and subspecies are synonymized: under S. opacus [=S. aztecus Forel syn. n., S. zacapanus Wheeler syn. n., and S. diego Forel syn. n.]; under S. bondari [=S. beniensis Weber syn. n.]; under S. mayri [=S. luederwaldti Santschi syn. n., S. moreirai Santschi syn. n., S. harekulli Weber syn. n., S. harekulli arawakensis Weber syn. n., S. urichi Forel syn. n.]; under S. saussurei [=S. burchelli Forel syn. n., S. impexus Wheeler syn. n., S. urichi maracas Weber syn. n.]; and under S. parvulus [=S. myersi Weber syn. n.]. We provide a key to Sericomyrmex species for the worker caste and information on the geographic distributions of all species.

  6. Disentangling endogenous versus exogenous pattern formation in spatial ecology: a case study of the ant Azteca sericeasur in southern Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kevin; Vandermeer, John H; Perfecto, Ivette

    2016-05-01

    Spatial patterns in ecology can be described as reflective of environmental heterogeneity (exogenous), or emergent from dynamic relationships between interacting species (endogenous), but few empirical studies focus on the combination. The spatial distribution of the nests of Azteca sericeasur, a keystone tropical arboreal ant, is thought to form endogenous spatial patterns among the shade trees of a coffee plantation through self-regulating interactions with controlling agents (i.e. natural enemies). Using inhomogeneous point process models, we found evidence for both types of processes in the spatial distribution of A. sericeasur. Each year's nest distribution was determined mainly by a density-dependent relationship with the previous year's lagged nest density; but using a novel application of a Thomas cluster process to account for the effects of nest clustering, we found that nest distribution also correlated significantly with tree density in the later years of the study. This coincided with the initiation of agricultural intensification and tree felling on the coffee farm. The emergence of this significant exogenous effect, along with the changing character of the density-dependent effect of lagged nest density, provides clues to the mechanism behind a unique phenomenon observed in the plot, that of an increase in nest population despite resource limitation in nest sites. Our results have implications in coffee agroecological management, as this system provides important biocontrol ecosystem services. Further research is needed, however, to understand the effective scales at which these relationships occur.

  7. Consuming fire ants reduces northern bobwhite survival and weight gain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, P.E.; Allen, Craig R.; Birge, Hannah E.

    2014-01-01

    Northern bobwhite quail, Colinus virginianus (L.) (Galliformes: Odontophoridae), population declines are well documented, but pinpointing the reasons for these decreases has proven elusive. Bobwhite population declines are attributed primarily to loss of habitat and land use changes. This, however, does not entirely explain population declines in areas intensively managed for bobwhites. Although previous research demonstrates the negative impact of red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on northern bobwhites, the mechanisms underlying this effect are largely unknown. To meet the protein demands of early growth and development, bobwhite chicks predominantly consume small insects, of which ants are a substantial proportion. Fire ants alter ant community dynamics by often reducing native ant diversity and abundance while concurrently increasing the abundance of individuals. Fire ants have negative effects on chicks, but they are also a large potential protein source, making it difficult to disentangle their net effect on bobwhite chicks. To help investigate these effects, we conducted a laboratory experiment to understand (1) whether or not bobwhites consume fire ants, and (2) how the benefits of this consumption compare to the deleterious impacts of bobwhite chick exposure to fire ants. Sixty bobwhite chicks were separated into two groups of 30; one group was provided with starter feed only and the second group was provided with feed and fire ants. Bobwhite chicks were observed feeding on fire ants. Chicks that fed on fire ants had reduced survival and weight gain. Our results show that, while fire ants increase potential food sources for northern bobwhite, their net effect on bobwhite chicks is deleterious. This information will help inform land managers and commercial bobwhite rearing operations.

  8. Cercomacra and related antbirds (Aves, Formicariidae as army ant followers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edwin O. Willis

    1984-01-01

    Full Text Available Cercomacra and Schistocichla antbirds (Formicariidae favor dense foliage and seldom follow army ants for flushed prey, since the ants move through open forest understory as well as through dense zones. Two other lineages, the Drymophila-Hypocnemis lineage (of dense woodland understory and the Formicivora lineage (of dense bushes in dry or semiopen zones, also cannot follow ants regularly through open forest understory.

  9. Do herbivores eavesdrop on ant chemical communication to avoid predation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J Gonthier

    Full Text Available Strong effects of predator chemical cues on prey are common in aquatic and marine ecosystems, but are thought to be rare in terrestrial systems and specifically for arthropods. For ants, herbivores are hypothesized to eavesdrop on ant chemical communication and thereby avoid predation or confrontation. Here I tested the effect of ant chemical cues on herbivore choice and herbivory. Using Margaridisa sp. flea beetles and leaves from the host tree (Conostegia xalapensis, I performed paired-leaf choice feeding experiments. Coating leaves with crushed ant liquids (Azteca instabilis, exposing leaves to ant patrolling prior to choice tests (A. instabilis and Camponotus textor and comparing leaves from trees with and without A. instabilis nests resulted in more herbivores and herbivory on control (no ant-treatment relative to ant-treatment leaves. In contrast to A. instabilis and C. textor, leaves previously patrolled by Solenopsis geminata had no difference in beetle number and damage compared to control leaves. Altering the time A. instabilis patrolled treatment leaves prior to choice tests (0-, 5-, 30-, 90-, 180-min. revealed treatment effects were only statistically significant after 90- and 180-min. of prior leaf exposure. This study suggests, for two ecologically important and taxonomically diverse genera (Azteca and Camponotus, ant chemical cues have important effects on herbivores and that these effects may be widespread across the ant family. It suggests that the effect of chemical cues on herbivores may only appear after substantial previous ant activity has occurred on plant tissues. Furthermore, it supports the hypothesis that herbivores use ant chemical communication to avoid predation or confrontation with ants.

  10. A Theoretic Basis for IS? The Contribution of ANT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jim Underwood

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available Representation is a key issue of IS design and operation that is often ignored. Actor-network theory (ANT, a semiotic theory of stakeholders, provides a way of dealing with representation. Combining aspects of ANT and Foucault's discourse theory allows us to include concepts as actors and promises a flexible and durable foundation for IS practice, but ANT itself indicates that the search for a purely theoretical foundation for IS is misguided.

  11. Egg Production Constrains Chemical Defenses in a Neotropical Arachnid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taís M Nazareth

    Full Text Available Female investment in large eggs increases the demand for fatty acids, which are allocated for yolk production. Since the biosynthetic pathway leading to fatty acids uses the same precursors used in the formation of polyketides, allocation trade-offs are expected to emerge. Therefore, egg production should constrain the investment in chemical defenses based on polyketides, such as benzoquinones. We tested this hypothesis using the harvestman Acutiosoma longipes, which produces large eggs and releases benzoquinones as chemical defense. We predicted that the amount of secretion released by ovigerous females (OFs would be smaller than that of non-ovigerous females (NOF. We also conducted a series of bioassays in the field and in the laboratory to test whether egg production renders OFs more vulnerable to predation. OFs produce less secretion than NOFs, which is congruent with the hypothesis that egg production constrains the investment in chemical defenses. Results of the bioassays show that the secretion released by OFs is less effective in deterring potential predators (ants and spiders than the secretion released by NOFs. In conclusion, females allocate resources to chemical defenses in a way that preserves a primary biological function related to reproduction. However, the trade-off between egg and secretion production makes OFs vulnerable to predators. We suggest that egg production is a critical moment in the life of harvestman females, representing perhaps the highest cost of reproduction in the group.

  12. Insecticide transfer efficiency and lethal load in Argentine ants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hooper-Bui, L.M. [Department of Environmental Science, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (United States); Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Kwok, E.S.C. [Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Buchholz, B.A., E-mail: buchholz2@llnl.gov [Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94551 (United States); Department of Environmental Toxicology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (United States); Rust, M.K. [Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Eastmond, D.A. [Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Vogel, J.S. [Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94551 (United States)

    2015-10-15

    Trophallaxis between individual worker ants and the toxicant load in dead and live Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) in colonies exposed to fipronil and hydramethylnon experimental baits were examined using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). About 50% of the content of the crop containing trace levels of {sup 14}C-sucrose, {sup 14}C-hydramethylnon, and {sup 14}C-fipronil was shared between single donor and recipient ants. Dead workers and queens contained significantly more hydramethylnon (122.7 and 22.4 amol/μg ant, respectively) than did live workers and queens (96.3 and 10.4 amol/μg ant, respectively). Dead workers had significantly more fipronil (420.3 amol/μg ant) than did live workers (208.5 amol/μg ant), but dead and live queens had equal fipronil levels (59.5 and 54.3 amol/μg ant, respectively). The distribution of fipronil differed within the bodies of dead and live queens; the highest amounts of fipronil were recovered in the thorax of dead queens whereas live queens had the highest levels in the head. Resurgence of polygynous ant colonies treated with hydramethylnon baits may be explained by queen survival resulting from sublethal doses due to a slowing of trophallaxis throughout the colony. Bait strategies and dose levels for controlling insect pests need to be based on the specific toxicant properties and trophic strategies for targeting the entire colony.

  13. Improved Ant Colony Clustering Algorithm and Its Performance Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Clustering analysis is used in many disciplines and applications; it is an important tool that descriptively identifies homogeneous groups of objects based on attribute values. The ant colony clustering algorithm is a swarm-intelligent method used for clustering problems that is inspired by the behavior of ant colonies that cluster their corpses and sort their larvae. A new abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm using a data combination mechanism is proposed to improve the computational efficiency and accuracy of the ant colony clustering algorithm. The abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm is used to cluster benchmark problems, and its performance is compared with the ant colony clustering algorithm and other methods used in existing literature. Based on similar computational difficulties and complexities, the results show that the abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm produces results that are not only more accurate but also more efficiently determined than the ant colony clustering algorithm and the other methods. Thus, the abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm can be used for efficient multivariate data clustering. PMID:26839533

  14. Insecticide transfer efficiency and lethal load in Argentine ants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hooper-Bui, L.M.; Kwok, E.S.C.; Buchholz, B.A.; Rust, M.K.; Eastmond, D.A.; Vogel, J.S.

    2015-01-01

    Trophallaxis between individual worker ants and the toxicant load in dead and live Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) in colonies exposed to fipronil and hydramethylnon experimental baits were examined using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). About 50% of the content of the crop containing trace levels of 14 C-sucrose, 14 C-hydramethylnon, and 14 C-fipronil was shared between single donor and recipient ants. Dead workers and queens contained significantly more hydramethylnon (122.7 and 22.4 amol/μg ant, respectively) than did live workers and queens (96.3 and 10.4 amol/μg ant, respectively). Dead workers had significantly more fipronil (420.3 amol/μg ant) than did live workers (208.5 amol/μg ant), but dead and live queens had equal fipronil levels (59.5 and 54.3 amol/μg ant, respectively). The distribution of fipronil differed within the bodies of dead and live queens; the highest amounts of fipronil were recovered in the thorax of dead queens whereas live queens had the highest levels in the head. Resurgence of polygynous ant colonies treated with hydramethylnon baits may be explained by queen survival resulting from sublethal doses due to a slowing of trophallaxis throughout the colony. Bait strategies and dose levels for controlling insect pests need to be based on the specific toxicant properties and trophic strategies for targeting the entire colony.

  15. Disease dynamics in a specialized parasite of ant societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Sandra Breum; Ferrari, Matthew; Evans, Harry C.

    2012-01-01

    Coevolution between ant colonies and their rare specialized parasites are intriguing, because lethal infections of workers may correspond to tolerable chronic diseases of colonies, but the parasite adaptations that allow stable coexistence with ants are virtually unknown. We explore the trade......-offs experienced by Ophiocordyceps parasites manipulating ants into dying in nearby graveyards. We used field data from Brazil and Thailand to parameterize and fit a model for the growth rate of graveyards. We show that parasite pressure is much lower than the abundance of ant cadavers suggests...

  16. Signals can trump rewards in attracting seed-dispersing ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle M Turner

    Full Text Available Both rewards and signals are important in mutualisms. In myrmecochory, or seed dispersal by ants, the benefits to plants are relatively well studied, but less is known about why ants pick up and move seeds. We examined seed dispersal by the ant Aphaenogaster rudis of four co-occurring species of plants, and tested whether morphology, chemical signaling, or the nutritional quality of fatty seed appendages called elaiosomes influenced dispersal rates. In removal trials, ants quickly collected diaspores (seeds plus elaiosomes of Asarum canadense, Trillium grandiflorum, and Sanguinaria canadensis, but largely neglected those of T. erectum. This discrepancy was not explained by differences in the bulk cost-benefit ratio, as assessed by the ratio of seed to elaiosome mass. We also provisioned colonies with diaspores from one of these four plant species or no diaspores as a control. Colonies performed best when fed S. canadensis diaspores, worst when fed T. grandiflorum, and intermediately when fed A. canadense, T. erectum, or no diaspores. Thus, the nutritional rewards in elaiosomes affected colony performance, but did not completely predict seed removal. Instead, high levels of oleic acid in T. grandiflorum elaiosomes may explain why ants disperse these diaspores even though they reduce ant colony performance. We show for the first time that different elaiosome-bearing plants provide rewards of different quality to ant colonies, but also that ants appear unable to accurately assess reward quality when encountering seeds. Instead, we suggest that signals can trump rewards as attractants of ants to seeds.

  17. The evolution of invasiveness in garden ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvia Cremer

    Full Text Available It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its rapid spread through Europe and Asia as the most recent example of a pest ant that may become a global problem. Here, we present the first integrated study on behavior, morphology, population genetics, chemical recognition and parasite load of L. neglectus and its non-invasive sister species L. turcicus. We find that L. neglectus expresses the same supercolonial syndrome as other invasive ants, a social system that is characterized by mating without dispersal and large networks of cooperating nests rather than smaller mutually hostile colonies. We conclude that the invasive success of L. neglectus relies on a combination of parasite-release following introduction and pre-adaptations in mating system, body-size, queen number and recognition efficiency that evolved long before introduction. Our results challenge the notion that supercolonial organization is an inevitable consequence of low genetic variation for chemical recognition cues in small invasive founder populations. We infer that low variation and limited volatility in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles already existed in the native range in combination with low dispersal and a highly viscous population structure. Human transport to relatively disturbed urban areas thus became the decisive factor to induce parasite release, a well established general promoter of invasiveness in non-social animals and plants, but understudied in invasive social insects.

  18. The Evolution of Invasiveness in Garden Ants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cremer, Sylvia; Ugelvig, Line V.; Drijfhout, Falko P.; Schlick-Steiner, Birgit C.; Steiner, Florian M.; Seifert, Bernhard; Hughes, David P.; Schulz, Andreas; Petersen, Klaus S.; Konrad, Heino; Stauffer, Christian; Kiran, Kadri; Espadaler, Xavier; d'Ettorre, Patrizia; Aktaç, Nihat; Eilenberg, Jørgen; Jones, Graeme R.; Nash, David R.; Pedersen, Jes S.; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2008-01-01

    It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its rapid spread through Europe and Asia as the most recent example of a pest ant that may become a global problem. Here, we present the first integrated study on behavior, morphology, population genetics, chemical recognition and parasite load of L. neglectus and its non-invasive sister species L. turcicus. We find that L. neglectus expresses the same supercolonial syndrome as other invasive ants, a social system that is characterized by mating without dispersal and large networks of cooperating nests rather than smaller mutually hostile colonies. We conclude that the invasive success of L. neglectus relies on a combination of parasite-release following introduction and pre-adaptations in mating system, body-size, queen number and recognition efficiency that evolved long before introduction. Our results challenge the notion that supercolonial organization is an inevitable consequence of low genetic variation for chemical recognition cues in small invasive founder populations. We infer that low variation and limited volatility in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles already existed in the native range in combination with low dispersal and a highly viscous population structure. Human transport to relatively disturbed urban areas thus became the decisive factor to induce parasite release, a well established general promoter of invasiveness in non-social animals and plants, but understudied in invasive social insects. PMID:19050762

  19. [Syagrus romanzoffiana (Arecaceae) seed utilization by ants in a secondary forest in South Brazil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Fernanda R; Begnini, Romualdo M; Klier, Vinícius A; Scherer, Karla Z; Lopes, Benedito C; Castellani, Tânia T

    2009-01-01

    Ants can nest in a wide variety of substracts. This paper shows Syagrus romanzoffiana seed utilization by ants in an Atlantic secondary forest. We report 29 seeds occupied by small-bodied ants, with 27 of them showing at least two ant development stages. Although a large number of seeds were sampled, a low level of ant occupation was observed.

  20. Relative effects of disturbance on red imported fire ants and native ant species in a longleaf pine ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stuble, Katharine L.; Kirkman, L. Katherine; Carroll, C. Ronald

    2011-01-01

    and cases in which non-native species become established in intact (lacking extensive anthropogenic soil disturbance) communities and subsequently diminish the abundance and richness of native species is challenging on the basis of observation alone. The red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta......), an invasive species that occurs throughout much of the southeastern United States, is such an example. Rather than competitively displacing native species, fire ants may become established only in disturbed areas in which native species richness and abundance are already reduced. We used insecticide to reduce......, the abundance of native ants increased to levels comparable to those in control plots after 1 year. Our findings suggest that factors other than large reductions in ant abundance and species density (number of species per unit area) may affect the establishment of fire ants and that the response of native ants...

  1. La escritura como espada ante el machismo

    OpenAIRE

    Rottoli, Sofía

    2016-01-01

    Cuando se trata de expresar una postura que abarque una temática demasiado amplia o controversial, recurrir a la escritura puede ser una buena opción de abordaje. Sobre todo cuando son discusiones que llevan años de vigencia. Las luchas feministas ante la violencia de género no son una excepción. Sus discusiones siempre tuvieron presencia en diversos campos, uno de ellos es la ya mencionada escritura. Centro de Investigación en Lectura y Escritura (CILE)

  2. Ecology: 'Devil's gardens' bedevilled by ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederickson, Megan E; Greene, Michael J; Gordon, Deborah M

    2005-09-22

    'Devil's gardens' are large stands of trees in the Amazonian rainforest that consist almost entirely of a single species, Duroia hirsuta, and, according to local legend, are cultivated by an evil forest spirit. Here we show that the ant Myrmelachista schumanni, which nests in D. hirsuta stems, creates devil's gardens by poisoning all plants except its host plants with formic acid. By killing these other plants, M. schumanni provides its colonies with abundant nest sites--a long-lasting benefit as colonies can live for 800 years.

  3. Ante-natal ionising radiation and cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1988-01-01

    This editorial comments on the latest reports of the Oxford Survey of Childhood Cancer (now based on Birmingham). With 14759 pairs, the latest survey is over 10-fold larger than the 1958 report and the calculation of fatal childhood cancer rate at one case in 990 ante-natal radiographic examinations is rather larger than the early estimates, in spite of the fetal radiation dose having been halved and the cure rate for childhood leukemia being much improved. Comments are made on the comparisons with bomb survivors, and on the much increased fatal cancer incidence after first trimester radiography. (UK)

  4. Philodryas chamissonis (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubridae preys on the arboreal marsupial Dromiciops gliroides (Mammalia: Microbiotheria: Microbiotheriidae Philodryas chamissonis (Reptilia: Squamata: Dipsadidae predando o marsupial arborícola Dromiciops gliroides (Mammalia: Microbiotheria: Microbiotheriidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Muñoz-Leal

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Philodryas chamissonis, the Chilean long-tailed snake, is a diurnal predator mainly of Liolaemus lizards, but also of amphibians, birds, rodents and juvenile rabbits. Dromiciops gliroides (Colocolo opossum is an arboreal marsupial endemic of temperate rainforest of southern South America. Little information is available about this marsupial's biology and ecology. Here we report the predation of one Colocolo opossum by an adult female P. chamissonis in a mixed Nothofagus forest, composed mainly by N. dombeyi, N. glauca and N. alpina trees, in the "Huemules de Niblinto" National Reserve, Nevados de Chillán, Chile. Since these two species have different activity and habitat use patterns, we discuss how this encounter may have occurred. Although it could just have been an opportunistic event, this finding provides insights into the different components of food chains in forest ecosystems of Chile.Philodryas chamissonis, cobra de cauda comprida ("Culebra de cola larga", é uma cobra diurna, predadora principalmente de lagartos do gênero Liolaemus, mas também de anfíbios, aves, roedores e coelhos jovens. Dromiciops gliroides (colocolo é um marsupial arborícola endêmico das florestas temperadas do sul da América do Sul. Há pouca informação disponível sobre a biologia e a ecologia deste marsulpial. É reportada, neste estudo, a predação de um colocolo por uma fêmea adulta de P. chamissonis, em uma floresta mista de Nothofagus, composta principalmente por árvores N. dombeyi, N. glauca e N. alpina, na Reserva Nacional de Huemules de Niblinto, Nevados de Chillán, Chile. Uma vez que estas duas espécies possuem diferentes padrões de atividade e de uso de habitat, discute-se como este evento poder ter ocorrido. Embora este possa ter sido apenas um evento oportunístico, o achado fornece novas informações sobre os diferentes componentes da cadeia alimentar nos ecossistemas florestais do Chile.

  5. Variations iconographiques : Constantin le Grand dans les peintures des églises de Pătrăuţi et d’Arbore / Iconographic Variations: Constantine the Great in the Paintings of the Churches of Pătrăuţi and Arbore

    OpenAIRE

    Tereza Sinigalia

    2014-01-01

    Iconographic Variations: Constantine the Great in the Paintings of the Churches of Pătrăuţi and Arbore. The article, written in 2013, the Constantinian Year, takes back and develops some ideas which can be found in my previous articles concerning the murals in both of churches in discussion. „The Exaltation of the Holy Cross” of the former nun’s monastery Pătrăuţi and the church dedicated to „The Beheading of St John the Baptist” in the village Arbore. The first is the foundation of the Molda...

  6. Ant Systems for a Dynamic TSP - Ants Caught in a Traffic Jam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eyckelhof, C.J.; Dorigo, M.; Caro Di, G.; Snoek, M.; Sampels, M.

    2002-01-01

    In this paper we present a new Ants System approach to a dynamic Travelling Salesman Problem. Here the travel times between the cities are subject to change. To handle this dynamism several ways of adapting the pheromone matrix both locally and globally are considered. We show that the strategy of

  7. Reservoirs and human well being: new challenges for evaluating impacts and benefits in the neotropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JG. Tundisi

    Full Text Available As in many other continents, neotropical ecosystems are impacted by the construction of reservoirs. These artificial ecosystems change considerably the natural terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and their biodiversity. The multiple uses of reservoirs promote benefits for the human beings in terms of economic development, income, jobs and employment. Services of reservoirs are important assets for the regional ecosystem. Evaluation of ecosystem services produced by artificial reservoirs, are new challenges to the understanding of the cost/benefit relationships of reservoir construction in the neotropics. Regulating and other services promoted by reservoirs lead to new trends for "green technology" and the implementation of ecohydrological and ecotechnological developments. This approach can be utilized with better success as a substitute for the usual impact/benefit evaluation of the reservoirs. Better and diversified services can be achieved with "green technology" applied to the construction.

  8. Range expansion of the invasive insect Greenidea (Trichosiphon) psidii (Hemiptera: Aphididae) in the Neotropical Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culik, M P; Ventura, J A; Dos S Martins, D

    2016-01-01

    Greenidea psidii is an invasive insect from Asia that feeds on a diverse variety of agriculturally and environmentally important plant species. As an essential component of research necessary for development of a better understanding of biodiversity and its conservation, this study documents a major recent expansion in range of G. psidii in the Neotropics to the region of the tropical restinga ecosystem of Brazil, where it was found infesting guava (Psidium guajava) and jabuticaba (Plinia cauliflora). A summary of information on the geographic distribution, host plants, identification, and potential natural enemies of G. psidii that may be useful for integrated management of this pest in the Neotropical Region and other areas where this invasive insect has recently become established and is likely to further spread is also provided.

  9. Nectar Theft and Floral Ant-Repellence: A Link between Nectar Volume and Ant-Repellent Traits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballantyne, Gavin; Willmer, Pat

    2012-01-01

    As flower visitors, ants rarely benefit a plant. They are poor pollinators, and can also disrupt pollination by deterring other flower visitors, or by stealing nectar. Some plant species therefore possess floral ant-repelling traits. But why do particular species have such traits when others do not? In a dry forest in Costa Rica, of 49 plant species around a third were ant-repellent at very close proximity to a common generalist ant species, usually via repellent pollen. Repellence was positively correlated with the presence of large nectar volumes. Repellent traits affected ant species differently, some influencing the behaviour of just a few species and others producing more generalised ant-repellence. Our results suggest that ant-repellent floral traits may often not be pleiotropic, but instead could have been selected for as a defence against ant thieves in plant species that invest in large volumes of nectar. This conclusion highlights to the importance of research into the cost of nectar production in future studies into ant-flower interactions. PMID:22952793

  10. Partial incompatibility between ants and symbiotic fungi in two sympatric species of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bot, A N; Rehner, S A; Boomsma, J J

    2001-10-01

    We investigate the nature and duration of incompatibility between certain combinations of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants and symbiotic fungi, taken from sympatric colonies of the same or a related species. Ant-fungus incompatibility appeared to be largely independent of the ant species involved, but could be explained partly by genetic differences among the fungus cultivars. Following current theoretical considerations, we develop a hypothesis, originally proposed by S. A. Frank, that the observed incompatibilities are ultimately due to competitive interactions between genetically different fungal lineages, and we predict that the ants should have evolved mechanisms to prevent such competition between cultivars within a single garden. This requires that the ants are able to recognize unfamiliar fungi, and we show that this is indeed the case. Amplified fragment length polymorphism genotyping further shows that the two sympatric Acromyrmex species share each other's major lineages of cultivar, confirming that horizontal transfer does occasionally take place. We argue and provide some evidence that chemical substances produced by the fungus garden may mediate recognition of alien fungi by the ants. We show that incompatibility between ants and transplanted, genetically different cultivars is indeed due to active killing of the novel cultivar by the ants. This incompatibility disappears when ants are force-fed the novel cultivar for about a week, a result that is consistent with our hypothesis of recognition induced by the resident fungus and eventual replacement of incompatibility compounds during force-feeding.

  11. The importance of ants in cave ecology, with new records and behavioral observations of ants in Arizona caves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert B. Pape

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The importance of ants as elements in cave ecology has been mostly unrecognized. A global list of ant species recorded from caves, compiled from a review of existing literature, is presented. This paper also reviews what is currently known about ants occurring in Arizona (USA caves. The diversity and distribution represented in these records suggests ants are relatively common cave visitors (trogloxenes. A general utilization of caves by ants within both temperate and tropical latitudes may be inferred from this combined evidence. Observations of ant behavior in Arizona caves demonstrate a low level and sporadic, but persistent, use of these habitats and their contained resources by individual ant colonies. Documentation of Neivamyrmex sp. preying on cave-inhabiting arthropods is reported here for the first time. Observations of hypogeic army ants in caves suggests they may not penetrate to great vertical depth in search of prey, but can be persistent occupants in relatively shallow, horizontal sections of caves where they may prey on endemic cave animals. First cave records for ten ant species are reported from Arizona caves. These include two species of Neivamyrmex (N. nigrescens Cresson and Neivamyrmex sp.; Formicidae: Dorylinae, four myrmicines (Pheidole portalensis Wilson, Pheidole cf. porcula Wheeler, Solenopsis aurea Wheeler and Stenamma sp. Westwood, one dolichoderine (Forelius keiferi Wheeler and three formicines (Lasius arizonicus Wheeler, L. sitiens Wilson, and Camponotus sp. Mayr.

  12. Sleeping site ecology, but not sex, affect ecto- and hemoparasite risk, in sympatric, arboreal primates (Avahi occidentalis and Lepilemur edwardsi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hokan, May; Strube, Christina; Radespiel, Ute; Zimmermann, Elke

    2017-01-01

    A central question in evolutionary parasitology is to what extent ecology impacts patterns of parasitism in wild host populations. In this study, we aim to disentangle factors influencing the risk of parasite exposure by exploring the impact of sleeping site ecology on infection with ectoparasites and vector-borne hemoparasites in two sympatric primates endemic to Madagascar. Both species live in the same dry deciduous forest of northwestern Madagascar and cope with the same climatic constraints, they are arboreal, nocturnal, cat-sized and pair-living but differ prominently in sleeping site ecology. The Western woolly lemur ( Avahi occidentalis ) sleeps on open branches and frequently changes sleeping sites, whereas the Milne-Edward's sportive lemur ( Lepilemur edwardsi ) uses tree holes, displaying strong sleeping site fidelity. Sleeping in tree holes should confer protection from mosquito-borne hemoparasites, but should enhance the risk for ectoparasite infestation with mites and nest-adapted ticks. Sex may affect parasite risk in both species comparably, with males bearing a higher risk than females due to an immunosuppressive effect of higher testosterone levels in males or to sex-specific behavior. To explore these hypotheses, ectoparasites and blood samples were collected from 22 individuals of A. occidentalis and 26 individuals of L. edwardsi during the dry and rainy season. L. edwardsi, but not A. occidentalis , harbored ectoparasites, namely ticks ( Haemaphysalis lemuris [Ixodidae], Ornithodoros sp. [Argasidae]) and mites ( Aetholaelaps trilyssa , [Laelapidae]), suggesting that sleeping in tree holes promotes infestation with ectoparasites. Interestingly, ectoparasites were found solely in the hot, rainy season with a prevalence of 75% ( N  = 16 animals). Blood smears were screened for the presence and infection intensity of hemoparasites. Microfilariae were detected in both species. Morphological characteristics suggested that each lemur species

  13. Neotropical fish-fruit interactions: eco-evolutionary dynamics and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correa, Sandra Bibiana; Costa-Pereira, Raul; Fleming, Theodore; Goulding, Michael; Anderson, Jill T

    2015-11-01

    Frugivorous fish play a prominent role in seed dispersal and reproductive dynamics of plant communities in riparian and floodplain habitats of tropical regions worldwide. In Neotropical wetlands, many plant species have fleshy fruits and synchronize their fruiting with the flood season, when fruit-eating fish forage in forest and savannahs for periods of up to 7 months. We conducted a comprehensive analysis to examine the evolutionary origin of fish-fruit interactions, describe fruit traits associated with seed dispersal and seed predation, and assess the influence of fish size on the effectiveness of seed dispersal by fish (ichthyochory). To date, 62 studies have documented 566 species of fruits and seeds from 82 plant families in the diets of 69 Neotropical fish species. Fish interactions with flowering plants are likely to be as old as 70 million years in the Neotropics, pre-dating most modern bird-fruit and mammal-fruit interactions, and contributing to long-distance seed dispersal and possibly the radiation of early angiosperms. Ichthyochory occurs across the angiosperm phylogeny, and is more frequent among advanced eudicots. Numerous fish species are capable of dispersing small seeds, but only a limited number of species can disperse large seeds. The size of dispersed seeds and the probability of seed dispersal both increase with fish size. Large-bodied species are the most effective seed dispersal agents and remain the primary target of fishing activities in the Neotropics. Thus, conservation efforts should focus on these species to ensure continuity of plant recruitment dynamics and maintenance of plant diversity in riparian and floodplain ecosystems. © 2015 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  14. First Record of Scirtidae (Coleoptera Associated With Decaying Carcasses in the Neotropical Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Farias

    2013-07-01

    Resumo. Durante um estudo de dois anos da entomofauna associada a carcaças de suínos em um remanescente de Mata Atlântica em João Pessoa, PB, Brasil, foram coletados 127 indivíduos de Scirtes sp. Este é o primeiro registro de exemplares da família Scirtidae associados a carcaças na região Neotropical.

  15. Phytogeography and conservation of neotropical dry forest with emphasis on Columbia

    OpenAIRE

    Banda Rodriguez, Karina Paola

    2017-01-01

    Dry forest is one of the most threatened tropical forests in the world. Human impact has caused its massive transformation but conservation of dry forest has often been neglected across Latin America. In Colombia, less than 10% of the original extension of dry forest remains. This thesis studies the phytogeography of neotropical dry forest and its relevance for conservation using data from 1602 tree species inventories made in dry forests across Latin America and the Caribbean ...

  16. New species and records of Zavreliella Kieffer, 1920 from Neotropical region (Diptera: Chironomidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fusari, Lívia Maria; Pinho, Luiz Carlos; Lamas, Carlos José Einicker

    2017-01-19

    A new species of Zavreliella Kieffer, Zavreliella kambeba sp. n., is described, based on male adults collected in the Amazon rainforest, Brazil. Further seven Zavreliella species are recorded for new localities in Brazil, with the first Neotropical record of Z. marmorata (van der Wulp). The genus Zavreliella is now composed of 15 species, of which adult males are reviewed in a key to their identification.

  17. ANT tuner retrofit for LEB cavity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walling, L.; Goren, Y.; Kwiatkowski, S.

    1994-03-01

    This report describes a ferrite tuner design for the LEB cavity that utilizes techniques for bonding ferrite to metallic cooling plates that is utilized in the high-power rf and microwave industry. A test tuner was designed to fit into the existing LEB-built magnet and onto the Grimm LEB Cavity. It will require a new vacuum window in order to attain maximal tuning range and high voltage capability and a new center conductor of longer length and a different vacuum window connection than the Grimm center conductor. However, the new center conductor will be essentially identical to the Grimm center conductor in its basic construction and in the way it connects to the stand for support. The tuner is mechanically very similar to high-power stacked circulators built by ANT of Germany and was designed according to ANT's established engineering and design criteria and SSC LEB tuning and power requirements. The tuner design incorporates thin tiles of ferrite glued using a high-radiation-resistance epoxy to copper-plated stainless steel cooling plates of thickness 6.5 mm with water cooling channels inside the plates. The cooling plates constitute 16 pie-shaped segments arranged in a disk. They are electrically isolated from each other to suppress eddy currents. Five of these disks are arranged in parallel with high-pressure rf contacts between the plates at the outer radius. The end walls are slotted copper-plated stainless steel of thickness 3 mm

  18. Loading pattern optimization using ant colony algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoareau, Fabrice

    2008-01-01

    Electricite de France (EDF) operates 58 nuclear power plants (NPP), of the Pressurized Water Reactor type. The loading pattern optimization of these NPP is currently done by EDF expert engineers. Within this framework, EDF R and D has developed automatic optimization tools that assist the experts. LOOP is an industrial tool, developed by EDF R and D and based on a simulated annealing algorithm. In order to improve the results of such automatic tools, new optimization methods have to be tested. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) algorithms are recent methods that have given very good results on combinatorial optimization problems. In order to evaluate the performance of such methods on loading pattern optimization, direct comparisons between LOOP and a mock-up based on the Max-Min Ant System algorithm (a particular variant of ACO algorithms) were made on realistic test-cases. It is shown that the results obtained by the ACO mock-up are very similar to those of LOOP. Future research will consist in improving these encouraging results by using parallelization and by hybridizing the ACO algorithm with local search procedures. (author)

  19. Ant Foraging Behavior for Job Shop Problem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahad Diyana Abdul

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is a new algorithm approach, inspired by the foraging behavior of real ants. It has frequently been applied to many optimization problems and one such problem is in solving the job shop problem (JSP. The JSP is a finite set of jobs processed on a finite set of machine where once a job initiates processing on a given machine, it must complete processing and uninterrupted. In solving the Job Shop Scheduling problem, the process is measure by the amount of time required in completing a job known as a makespan and minimizing the makespan is the main objective of this study. In this paper, we developed an ACO algorithm to minimize the makespan. A real set of problems from a metal company in Johor bahru, producing 20 parts with jobs involving the process of clinching, tapping and power press respectively. The result from this study shows that the proposed ACO heuristics managed to produce a god result in a short time.

  20. The effect of diet and opponent size on aggressive interactions involving caribbean crazy ants (Nylanderia fulva.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine C Horn

    Full Text Available Biotic interactions are often important in the establishment and spread of invasive species. In particular, competition between introduced and native species can strongly influence the distribution and spread of exotic species and in some cases competition among introduced species can be important. The Caribbean crazy ant, Nylanderia fulva, was recently introduced to the Gulf Coast of Texas, and appears to be spreading inland. It has been hypothesized that competition with the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, may be an important factor in the spread of crazy ants. We investigated the potential of interspecific competition among these two introduced ants by measuring interspecific aggression between Caribbean crazy ant workers and workers of Solenopsis invicta. Specifically, we examined the effect of body size and diet on individual-level aggressive interactions among crazy ant workers and fire ants. We found that differences in diet did not alter interactions between crazy ant workers from different nests, but carbohydrate level did play an important role in antagonistic interactions with fire ants: crazy ants on low sugar diets were more aggressive and less likely to be killed in aggressive encounters with fire ants. We found that large fire ants engaged in fewer fights with crazy ants than small fire ants, but fire ant size affected neither fire ant nor crazy ant mortality. Overall, crazy ants experienced higher mortality than fire ants after aggressive encounters. Our findings suggest that fire ant workers might outcompete crazy ant workers on an individual level, providing some biotic resistance to crazy ant range expansion. However, this resistance may be overcome by crazy ants that have a restricted sugar intake, which may occur when crazy ants are excluded from resources by fire ants.

  1. Aphid egg protection by ants: a novel aspect of the mutualism between the tree-feeding aphid Stomaphis hirukawai and its attendant ant Lasius productus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuura, Kenji; Yashiro, Toshihisa

    2006-10-01

    Aphids often form mutualistic associations with ants, in which the aphids provide the ants with honeydew and the ants defend the aphids from predators. In this paper, we report aphid egg protection by ants as a novel aspect of the deeply interdependent relationship between a tree-feeding aphid and its attendant ant. The ant Lasius productus harbours oviparous females, males, and eggs of the hinoki cypress-feeding aphid Stomaphis hirukawai in its nests in winter. We investigated the behaviour of ants kept with aphid eggs in petri dishes to examine whether the ants recognise the aphid eggs and tend them or only provide a refuge for the aphids. Workers carried almost all of the aphid eggs into the nest within 24 h. The ants indiscriminately tended aphid eggs collected from their own colonies and those from other ant colonies. The ants cleaned the eggs and piled them up in the nest, and egg tending by ants dramatically increased aphid egg survival rates. Starving the ants showed no significant effect on aphid egg survivorship. Without ants, aphid eggs were rapidly killed by fungi. These results suggested that grooming by the ants protected the aphid eggs, at least, against pathogenic fungi. This hygienic service afforded by the ants seems indispensable for egg survival of these aphids in an environment rich in potentially pathogenic microorganisms.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-07-01

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

  3. Hyporheic invertebrate assemblages at reach scale in a Neotropical stream in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mugnai, R; Messana, G; Di Lorenzo, T

    2015-11-01

    In the Neotropical Region, information concerning hyporheic communities is virtually non-existent. We carried out a sampling survey in the hyporheic zone of the Tijuca River, in the Tijuca National Park, located in the urban area of the city of Rio de Janeiro. Biological samples from the hyporheic zone were collected in three different stream reaches, in June 2012. The main objectives were: 1) to describe the structure of invertebrate assemblages in the hyporheic zone of a neotropical stream; 2) to apply a reach-scale approach in order to investigate spatial patterns of the hyporheic assemblages in relation to hydrology, depth and microhabitat typology. A total of 1460 individuals were collected and identified in 31 taxa belonging to Nematoda, Annelida, Crustacea, Hydrachnidia and Insecta. The class Insecta dominated the upper layer of the hyporheic zone. Copepods were the most abundant taxon among crustaceans and occurred mostly in the upwelling areas of the reaches. The results of this study represent one of the few contributions so far about hyporheic invertebrate assemblages of the Neotropical Region.

  4. Neotropical coastal lagoons: an appraisal of their biodiversity, functioning, threats and conservation management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FA. Esteves

    Full Text Available Neotropical coastal lagoons (NCL are human-dominated ecosystems. Their distribution along densely populated coastal areas of developing countries makes these systems among the most threatened in the world. Here, we summarize some aspects of the causes and consequences of NCL biodiversity, their functioning, their importance to the surrounding populations, their fragility, and their responses to local and global anthropogenic impacts and the challenges that Neotropical countries face in conserving these systems. Although still scarce and geographically concentrated, a growing body of studies has shown that NCLs are physiographically diversified systems, which harbor a considerable and particular proportion of the Neotropical inland aquatic biodiversity. Despite the fact that coastal lagoons are ecotones that are intricately connected to surrounding environments, they develop mechanisms for structural and functional regulation, which confer to these systems higher productivity and carrying capacities than surrounding ecosystems. Such traits attract residential developments and subsidize local traditional populations with important economic and aesthetic ecosystem revenues such as fisheries and scenic beauty. However, the disorganized human occupation around NCLs are causing profound impacts such as eutrophication, salinization, exotic species introduction, as well as other effects, which are ultimately imposing major habitat degradations and biodiversity extirpations in NCLs. We argue that interdisciplinary conservation strategies, which integrate scientific expertise, government officials, private companies and the general public, are the most likely to overcome the geographic and economic obstacles to NCL conservation.

  5. A novel molecular marker for the study of Neotropical cichlid phylogeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fabrin, T M C; Gasques, L S; Prioli, S M A P; Prioli, A J

    2015-12-22

    The use of molecular markers has contributed to phylogeny and to the reconstruction of species' evolutionary history. Each region of the genome has different evolution rates, which may or may not identify phylogenetic signal at different levels. Therefore, it is important to assess new molecular markers that can be used for phylogenetic reconstruction. Regions that may be associated with species characteristics and are subject to selective pressure, such as opsin genes, which encode proteins related to the visual system and are widely expressed by Cichlidae family members, are interesting. Our aim was to identify a new nuclear molecular marker that could establish the phylogeny of Neotropical cichlids and is potentially correlated with the visual system. We used Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood analysis to support the use of the nuclear opsin LWS gene in the phylogeny of eight Neotropical cichlid species. Their use concatenated to the mitochondrial gene COI was also tested. The LWS gene fragment comprised the exon 2-4 region, including the introns. The LWS gene provided good support for both analyses up to the genus level, distinguishing the studied species, and when concatenated to the COI gene, there was a good support up to the species level. Another benefit of utilizing this region, is that some polymorphisms are associated with changes in spectral properties of the LWS opsin protein, which constitutes the visual pigment that absorbs red light. Thus, utilization of this gene as a molecular marker to study the phylogeny of Neotropical cichlids is promising.

  6. Biogeographic and diversification patterns of Neotropical Troidini butterflies (Papilionidae support a museum model of diversity dynamics for Amazonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Condamine Fabien L

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The temporal and geographical diversification of Neotropical insects remains poorly understood because of the complex changes in geological and climatic conditions that occurred during the Cenozoic. To better understand extant patterns in Neotropical biodiversity, we investigated the evolutionary history of three Neotropical swallowtail Troidini genera (Papilionidae. First, DNA-based species delimitation analyses were conducted to assess species boundaries within Neotropical Troidini using an enlarged fragment of the standard barcode gene. Molecularly delineated species were then used to infer a time-calibrated species-level phylogeny based on a three-gene dataset and Bayesian dating analyses. The corresponding chronogram was used to explore their temporal and geographical diversification through distinct likelihood-based methods. Results The phylogeny for Neotropical Troidini was well resolved and strongly supported. Molecular dating and biogeographic analyses indicate that the extant lineages of Neotropical Troidini have a late Eocene (33–42 Ma origin in North America. Two independent lineages (Battus and Euryades + Parides reached South America via the GAARlandia temporary connection, and later became extinct in North America. They only began substantive diversification during the early Miocene in Amazonia. Macroevolutionary analysis supports the “museum model” of diversification, rather than Pleistocene refugia, as the best explanation for the diversification of these lineages. Conclusions This study demonstrates that: (i current Neotropical biodiversity may have originated ex situ; (ii the GAARlandia bridge was important in facilitating invasions of South America; (iii colonization of Amazonia initiated the crown diversification of these swallowtails; and (iv Amazonia is not only a species-rich region but also acted as a sanctuary for the dynamics of this diversity. In particular, Amazonia probably allowed

  7. Biogeographic and diversification patterns of Neotropical Troidini butterflies (Papilionidae) support a museum model of diversity dynamics for Amazonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Condamine, Fabien L; Silva-Brandão, Karina L; Kergoat, Gael J; Sperling, Felix A H

    2012-06-12

    The temporal and geographical diversification of Neotropical insects remains poorly understood because of the complex changes in geological and climatic conditions that occurred during the Cenozoic. To better understand extant patterns in Neotropical biodiversity, we investigated the evolutionary history of three Neotropical swallowtail Troidini genera (Papilionidae). First, DNA-based species delimitation analyses were conducted to assess species boundaries within Neotropical Troidini using an enlarged fragment of the standard barcode gene. Molecularly delineated species were then used to infer a time-calibrated species-level phylogeny based on a three-gene dataset and Bayesian dating analyses. The corresponding chronogram was used to explore their temporal and geographical diversification through distinct likelihood-based methods. The phylogeny for Neotropical Troidini was well resolved and strongly supported. Molecular dating and biogeographic analyses indicate that the extant lineages of Neotropical Troidini have a late Eocene (33-42 Ma) origin in North America. Two independent lineages (Battus and Euryades+Parides) reached South America via the GAARlandia temporary connection, and later became extinct in North America. They only began substantive diversification during the early Miocene in Amazonia. Macroevolutionary analysis supports the "museum model" of diversification, rather than Pleistocene refugia, as the best explanation for the diversification of these lineages. This study demonstrates that: (i) current Neotropical biodiversity may have originated ex situ; (ii) the GAARlandia bridge was important in facilitating invasions of South America; (iii) colonization of Amazonia initiated the crown diversification of these swallowtails; and (iv) Amazonia is not only a species-rich region but also acted as a sanctuary for the dynamics of this diversity. In particular, Amazonia probably allowed the persistence of old lineages and contributed to the steady

  8. Ultrastructure of antennal sensillae of the samsum ant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Black ant (Samsum), Pachycodyla sennarrensis, stings and injects venom and inflicts allergy (a rare clinical problem) due to its local and systemic reaction, which is considered as a health hazard amongst Saudi society. Thus, black ant is a source of serious concern for the government and experts as well.

  9. Development of a Bait System for the Pharaoh's Ant, Monomorium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The infestation of the Pharaoh's ant, Monomorium pharaonis L. is widespread and, sometimes, very serious in homes, hospitals, restaurants, factories, etc. People are helpless because effective baited traps are not available locally, and little has been done locally to develop effective control strategies for these ants.

  10. A preliminary checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A preliminary species checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of. Kakamega Forest, Western Kenya, is presented. The species list is based on specimens sampled from 1999 until 2009, which are deposited in the ant collection of the Zoological Research Museum Koenig, Bonn, Germany, and the Natural History ...

  11. Ant species richness of fynbos and forest ecosystems in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The ant fauna in fynbos and forest habitats in the southern Cape are compared. There is no significant difference in ant species richness between the two undisturbed habitat types, and the only two species common to both are Acantholepis capensis and Camponotus maculatus. The degree of Hakea sericea infestation in ...

  12. Volatile chemicals in glands of the carpenter ant, Camponotus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Volatile chemicals in glands of the carpenter ant, Camponotus arminius. J.M. Brand, L.V. Mabinya, E.D. Morgan. Abstract. Camponotus arminius is a large black carpenter ant that occurs in tropical and sub-tropical Africa and has extensive foraging trails both in trees and on the ground. Analysis of excised mandibular glands ...

  13. Novel Phialophora species from leaf-cutting ants (tribe Attini)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Attili-Angelis, D.; Duarte, A.P.M.; Pagnocca, F.C.; Nagamoto, N.S.; de Vries, M.; Stielow, J.B.; de Hoog, G.S.

    2014-01-01

    Ants in the tribe Attini (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) maintain a 50 million-year-old lifestyle of co-evolution with symbiotic basidiomycetous fungi which they cultivate as essential source of nutrition. However, other microorganisms have been reported from ant habitats indicating a higher diversity of

  14. Why do house-hunting ants recruit in both directions?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Planqué, R.; Dechaume-Moncharmont, F.-X.; Franks, N.R.; Kovacs, T.; Marshall, J.A.R.

    2007-01-01

    To perform tasks, organisms often use multiple procedures. Explaining the breadth of such behavioural repertoires is not always straightforward. During house hunting, colonies of Temnothorax albipennis ants use a range of behaviours to organise their emigrations. In particular, the ants use tandem

  15. Tracing the rise of ants - out of the ground.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Lucky

    Full Text Available The evolution of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae is increasingly well-understood due to recent phylogenetic analyses, along with estimates of divergence times and diversification rates. Yet, leading hypotheses regarding the ancestral habitat of ants conflict with new findings that early ant lineages are cryptic and subterranean. Where the ants evolved, in respect to habitat, and how habitat shifts took place over time have not been formally tested. Here, we reconstruct the habitat transitions of crown-group ants through time, focusing on where they nest and forage (in the canopy, litter, or soil. Based on ancestral character reconstructions, we show that in contrast to the current consensus based on verbal arguments that ants evolved in tropical leaf litter, the soil is supported as the ancestral stratum of all ants. We also find subsequent movements up into the litter and, in some cases, into the canopy. Given the global importance of ants, because of their diversity, ecological influence and status as the most successful eusocial lineage on Earth, understanding the early evolution of this lineage provides insight into the factors that made this group so successful today.

  16. In vitro studies of ante-mortem proliferation kinetics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McBride, W.H.; Withers, H.R.

    1986-01-01

    Using K562 human erythroblastoid cells, it was concluded that dose fractionation has no discrepant effect on the ante-mortem proliferation kinetics of doomed cells as opposed to clonogenic cell survival and that effects on ante-mortem proliferation kinetics cannot be solely responsible for the differences in fractionation response between early and late responding tissues. (UK)

  17. Reciprocal genomic evolution in the ant-fungus agricultural symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nygaard, Sanne; Hu, Haofu; Li, Cai

    2016-01-01

    The attine ant-fungus agricultural symbiosis evolved over tens of millions of years, producing complex societies with industrial-scale farming analogous to that of humans. Here we document reciprocal shifts in the genomes and transcriptomes of seven fungus-farming ant species and their fungal...

  18. Life-Histories of Sub-Arctic Ants

    OpenAIRE

    Heinze, Jürgen

    1993-01-01

    Ant species belonging to seven genera occur in habitats near the tree line in the Northern Hemisphere. An analysis of colony founding strategies suggests that in addition to physiological cold resistance, behavioral and sociometric adaptations might be important for survival and propagation of ants in subarctic biomes.

  19. Studies of laboulbeniales (Fungi, Ascomycota) on myrmica ants (II)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haelewaters, Danny; Boer, Peter; Gort, Gerrit; Noordijk, Jinze

    2015-01-01

    One group of important insect parasites are the Laboulbeniales (Ascomycota), microscopic fungi that live attached to the exterior of their hosts, mainly beetles, but also mites, millipedes, earwigs, and ants. Rickia wasmannii is a common fungus in Europe and is limited to the ant genus Myrmica

  20. ADAPTIVE ANT COLONY OPTIMIZATION BASED GRADIENT FOR EDGE DETECTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Febri Liantoni

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is a nature-inspired optimization algorithm which is motivated by ants foraging behavior. Due to its favorable advantages, ACO has been widely used to solve several NP-hard problems, including edge detection. Since ACO initially distributes ants at random, it may cause imbalance ant distribution which later affects path discovery process. In this paper an adaptive ACO is proposed to optimize edge detection by adaptively distributing ant according to gradient analysis. Ants are adaptively distributed according to gradient ratio of each image regions. Region which has bigger gradient ratio, will have bigger number of ant distribution. Experiments are conducted using images from various datasets. Precision and recall are used to quantitatively evaluate performance of the proposed algorithm. Precision and recall of adaptive ACO reaches 76.98 % and 96.8 %. Whereas highest precision and recall for standard ACO are 69.74 % and 74.85 %. Experimental results show that the adaptive ACO outperforms standard ACO which randomly distributes ants.

  1. Patterns of male parentage in the fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen, Palle; Boomsma, JJ

    2003-01-01

    Ant queens from eight species, covering three genera of lower and two genera of higher attine ants, have exclusively or predominantly single mating. The ensuing full-sib colonies thus have a strong potential reproductive conflict between the queen and the workers over male production...

  2. Odorous house ants (Tapinoma sessile as back-seat drivers of localized ant decline in urban habitats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Salyer

    Full Text Available Invasive species and habitat disturbance threaten biodiversity worldwide by modifying ecosystem performance and displacing native organisms. Similar homogenization impacts manifest locally when urbanization forces native species to relocate or reinvade perpetually altered habitat. This study investigated correlations between ant richness and abundance in response to urbanization and the nearby presence of invasive ant species, odorous house ants (Tapinoma sessile, within its native region. Surveying localized ant composition within natural, semi-natural, and urban habitat supported efforts to determine whether T. sessile appear to be primary (drivers threats as instigators or secondary (passengers threats as inheritors of indigenous ant decline. Sampling 180 sites, evenly split between all habitats with and without T. sessile present, yielded 45 total species. Although urbanization and T. sessile presence factors were significantly linked to ant decline, their interaction correlated to the greatest reduction of total ant richness (74% and abundance (81%. Total richness appeared to decrease from 27 species to 18 when natural habitat is urbanized and from 18 species to 7 with T. sessile present in urban plots. Odorous house ant presence minimally influenced ant communities within natural and semi-natural habitat, highlighting the importance of habitat alteration and T. sessile presence interactions. Results suggest urbanization releases T. sessile from unknown constraints by decreasing ant richness and competition. Within urban environment, T. sessile are pre-adapted to quickly exploit new resources and grow to supercolony strength wherein T. sessile drive adjacent biodiversity loss. Odorous house ants act as passengers and drivers of ecological change throughout different phases of urban 'invasion'. This progression through surviving habitat alteration, exploiting new resources, thriving, and further reducing interspecific competition supports a

  3. Weaver Ants to Control Fruit Fly Damage to Tanzanian Mangoes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirkegaard, Nina

    in Australia and West Africa. In this study, small scale farmers did not think weaver ants protected their mangoes from fruit flies. Observational studies confirmed the farmers’ views. No volatile compounds, likely to be responsible for the weaver ants’ deterrent effect, were identified. This study focused...... mangoes varied a lot with zero infestation in some fruits and more than 100 pupae emerging from other fruits, indicating that other factors than the presence of weaver ants affect the fruit flies’ decision on where to oviposit. It was not uncommon for farmers to place newly harvested mangoes below mango...... not shown to be effectively deterring fruit flies, there is no great motivation for farmers to adopt weaver ants. Assuming the weaver ants could be managed in a way that made weaver ants deter fruit flies effectively there are still some economic aspects which should be studied further. It is necessary...

  4. Behind every great ant, there is a great gut

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Michael; Sapountzis, Panagiotis

    2012-01-01

    on the potential contribution of the ants’ gut symbionts. This issue of Molecular Ecology contains a study by Anderson et al. (2012), who take a comparative approach to explore the link between trophic levels and ant microbiomes, specifically, to address three main questions: (i) Do closely related herbivorous...... conserved gut microbiomes, suggesting symbiont functions that directly relate to dietary preference of the ant host. These findings suggest an ecological role of gut symbionts in ants, for example, in metabolism and/or protection, and the comparative approach taken supports a model of co-evolution between...... ant species and specific core symbiont microbiomes. This study, thereby, highlights the omnipresence and importance of gut symbioses—also in the Hymenoptera—and suggests that these hitherto overlooked microbes likely have contributed to the ecological success of the ants....

  5. Egg-laying butterflies distinguish predaceous ants by sight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sendoya, Sebastián F; Freitas, André V L; Oliveira, Paulo S

    2009-07-01

    Information about predation risks is critical for herbivorous insects, and natural selection favors their ability to detect predators before oviposition and to select enemy-free foliage when offspring mortality risk is high. Food plants are selected by ovipositing butterflies, and offspring survival frequently varies among plants because of variation in the presence of predators. Eunica bechina butterflies oviposit on Caryocar brasiliense, an ant-defended plant. Experiments with dried Camponotus and Cephalotes ants pinned to leaves revealed that butterflies use ant size and form as visual cues to avoid ovipositing on plant parts occupied by ants more likely to kill larval offspring. Presence of sap-sucking bugs did not affect butterfly oviposition. This is the first demonstration that visual recognition of predators can mediate egg-laying decisions by an insect herbivore and that an insect will discriminate among different species of potential predators. This unusual behavioral capability permits specialization on a risky, ant-defended food plant.

  6. Hypertension impairs hippocampus-related adult neurogenesis, CA1 neuron dendritic arborization and long-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shih, Y-H; Tsai, S-F; Huang, S-H; Chiang, Y-T; Hughes, M W; Wu, S-Y; Lee, C-W; Yang, T-T; Kuo, Y-M

    2016-05-13

    Hypertension is associated with neurodegenerative diseases and cognitive impairment. Several studies using spontaneous hypertensive rats to study the effect of hypertension on memory performance and adult hippocampal neurogenesis have reached inconsistent conclusions. The contradictory findings may be related to the genetic variability of spontaneous hypertensive rats due to the conventional breeding practices. The objective of this study is to examine the effect of hypertension on hippocampal structure and function in isogenic mice. Hypertension was induced by the '2 kidneys, 1 clip' method (2K1C) which constricted one of the two renal arteries. The blood pressures of 2K1C mice were higher than the sham group on post-operation day 7 and remained high up to day 28. Mice with 2K1C-induced hypertension had impaired long-term, but not short-term, memory. Dendritic complexity of CA1 neurons and hippocampal neurogenesis were reduced by 2K1C-induced hypertension on post-operation day 28. Furthermore, 2K1C decreased the levels of hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor, while blood vessel density and activation status of astrocytes and microglia were not affected. In conclusion, hypertension impairs hippocampus-associated long-term memory, dendritic arborization and neurogenesis, which may be caused by down-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor signaling pathways. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Astrocyte-secreted factors modulate a gradient of primary dendritic arbors in nucleus laminaris of the avian auditory brainstem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J Korn

    Full Text Available Neurons in nucleus laminaris (NL receive binaural, tonotopically matched input from nucleus magnocelluaris (NM onto bitufted dendrites that display a gradient of dendritic arbor size. These features improve computation of interaural time differences, which are used to determine the locations of sound sources. The dendritic gradient emerges following a period of significant reorganization at embryonic day 15 (E15, which coincides with the emergence of astrocytes that express glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP in the auditory brainstem. The major changes include a loss of total dendritic length, a systematic loss of primary dendrites along the tonotopic axis, and lengthening of primary dendrites on caudolateral NL neurons. Here we have tested whether astrocyte-derived molecules contribute to these changes in dendritic morphology. We used an organotypic brainstem slice preparation to perform repeated imaging of individual dye-filled NL neurons to determine the effects of astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM on dendritic morphology. We found that treatment with ACM induced a decrease in the number of primary dendrites in a tonotopically graded manner similar to that observed during normal development. Our data introduce a new interaction between astrocytes and neurons in the auditory brainstem and suggest that these astrocytes influence multiple aspects of auditory brainstem maturation.

  8. Oldest skeleton of a plesiadapiform provides additional evidence for an exclusively arboreal radiation of stem primates in the Palaeocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chester, Stephen G. B.; Williamson, Thomas E.; Bloch, Jonathan I.; Silcox, Mary T.; Sargis, Eric J.

    2017-05-01

    Palaechthonid plesiadapiforms from the Palaeocene of western North America have long been recognized as among the oldest and most primitive euarchontan mammals, a group that includes extant primates, colugos and treeshrews. Despite their relatively sparse fossil record, palaechthonids have played an important role in discussions surrounding adaptive scenarios for primate origins for nearly a half-century. Likewise, palaechthonids have been considered important for understanding relationships among plesiadapiforms, with members of the group proposed as plausible ancestors of Paromomyidae and Microsyopidae. Here, we describe a dentally associated partial skeleton of Torrejonia wilsoni from the early Palaeocene (approx. 62 Ma) of New Mexico, which is the oldest known plesiadapiform skeleton and the first postcranial elements recovered for a palaechthonid. Results from a cladistic analysis that includes new data from this skeleton suggest that palaechthonids are a paraphyletic group of stem primates, and that T. wilsoni is most closely related to paromomyids. New evidence from the appendicular skeleton of T. wilsoni fails to support an influential hypothesis based on inferences from craniodental morphology that palaechthonids were terrestrial. Instead, the postcranium of T. wilsoni indicates that it was similar to that of all other plesiadapiforms for which skeletons have been recovered in having distinct specializations consistent with arboreality.

  9. ANT International chemistry update and best practices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nordmann, F.; Odar, S.; Venz, H.; Kysela, J.; Ruehle, W.; Riess, R.

    2010-01-01

    There is an increasing number of Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) in various countries. Their chemistry practices are different due to the variety of designs and experiences while in the past the view was more monolithic. This is allowing a very rich experience that is extremely difficult to fully be aware of. ANT International is now collecting and evaluating these data as well as related R and D Information. This allows interested parties to have an easier access to the various sources of information. The chemistry experts associated to ANT International have been gathering a comprehensive detailed view of: The numerous laboratory data gained all over the world during the past decades; The extensive plant operating experiences with various types of chemistry strategies, crosschecked for various types of reactors designs and materials; An experienced international knowledge able to give the comprehensive overview that young engineers now in charge of many other activities are unable to fully cover. This paper gives the core conclusions of the detailed ANT International reports and results that have recently been gathered in the area of chemistry. It particularly covers: The primary water chemistry and its relation with radionuclides, dose rates and fuel behaviour; The secondary water chemistry focusing on its rationale selection depending on materials, design and other constraints; The start up and shutdown chemistry with it large variety of practices hardly understandable even for some experts; and, The maintenance remedies such as decontamination, steam generator cleaning and its alternate options. Various types of Reactor designs (PWR, VVER, BWR, CANDU®) are considered. The different materials, for example the impact of steam generator tubing and its evolution on the secondary water chemistry rationale or on the radioactivity built-up in the primary coolant, are described. The ways to improve the plant operation with a long term reliability as well as the most

  10. The regulation of ant colony foraging activity without spatial information.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balaji Prabhakar

    Full Text Available Many dynamical networks, such as the ones that produce the collective behavior of social insects, operate without any central control, instead arising from local interactions among individuals. A well-studied example is the formation of recruitment trails in ant colonies, but many ant species do not use pheromone trails. We present a model of the regulation of foraging by harvester ant (Pogonomyrmex barbatus colonies. This species forages for scattered seeds that one ant can retrieve on its own, so there is no need for spatial information such as pheromone trails that lead ants to specific locations. Previous work shows that colony foraging activity, the rate at which ants go out to search individually for seeds, is regulated in response to current food availability throughout the colony's foraging area. Ants use the rate of brief antennal contacts inside the nest between foragers returning with food and outgoing foragers available to leave the nest on the next foraging trip. Here we present a feedback-based algorithm that captures the main features of data from field experiments in which the rate of returning foragers was manipulated. The algorithm draws on our finding that the distribution of intervals between successive ants returning to the nest is a Poisson process. We fitted the parameter that estimates the effect of each returning forager on the rate at which outgoing foragers leave the nest. We found that correlations between observed rates of returning foragers and simulated rates of outgoing foragers, using our model, were similar to those in the data. Our simple stochastic model shows how the regulation of ant colony foraging can operate without spatial information, describing a process at the level of individual ants that predicts the overall foraging activity of the colony.

  11. Potential effects of arboreal and terrestrial avian dispersers on seed dormancy, seed germination and seedling establishment in Ormosia (Papilionoideae) species in Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Mercedes S.

    2008-01-01

    The relative effectiveness of arboreal or terrestrial birds at dispersing seeds of Ormosia macrocalyx and O. bopiensis (Fabaceae: Papilionoideae) were studied in south-eastern Peru. Seeds of both species were either scarified, to represent seed condition after dispersal by terrestrial birds, or left intact, to represent seed condition after dispersal by arboreal birds. Seeds were distributed along forest transects, and germination, seedling development and mortality were monitored to determine the successes of the two groups at producing seedlings. Scarified seeds germinated with the early rains of the dry-to-wet-season transition, when erratic rainfall was interspersed with long dry spells. Intact seeds germinated 30 d later when the rain was more plentiful and regular. Intact seeds of O. macrocalyx gave rise to significantly more seedlings (41.1% vs. 25.5%) than did scarified seeds, in part, because significantly more seedlings from scarified seeds (n = 20) than from intact seeds (n = 3) died from desiccation when their radicles failed to enter the dry ground present during the dry-to-wet-season transition. Also, seedlings from scarified seeds were neither larger nor more robust than those from intact seeds despite their longer growing period. Results are consistent with the hypothesis that dispersal effectiveness of arboreal birds, at least for O. macrocalyx, is greater than that of terrestrial birds. Screen-house experiments in which seedlings developed under different watering regimes supported this result. Numbers of seedlings developing from intact and scarified seeds of O. bopiensis did not differ significantly.

  12. Impaired terrestrial and arboreal locomotor performance in the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) after exposure to an AChE-inhibiting pesticide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DuRant, Sarah E.; Hopkins, William A.; Talent, Larry G.

    2007-01-01

    We examined the effects of a commonly used AChE-inhibiting pesticide on terrestrial and arboreal sprint performance, important traits for predator avoidance and prey capture, in the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis). Lizards were exposed to carbaryl (2.5, 25, and 250 μg/g) and were raced before and 4, 24, and 96 h after dosing. In the terrestrial setting, exposure to low concentrations of carbaryl had stimulatory effects on performance, but exposure to the highest concentration was inhibitory. No stimulatory effects of carbaryl were noted in the arboreal environment and performance in lizards was reduced after exposure to both the medium and highest dose of carbaryl. Our findings suggest that acute exposure to high concentrations of carbaryl can have important sublethal consequences on fitness-related traits in reptiles and that arboreal locomotor performance is a more sensitive indicator of AChE-inhibiting pesticide poisoning than terrestrial locomotor performance. - Exposure to an acetylcholinesterase-inhibiting pesticide alters locomotor performance in western fence lizards

  13. Impaired terrestrial and arboreal locomotor performance in the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) after exposure to an AChE-inhibiting pesticide

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    DuRant, Sarah E. [Wildlife Ecotoxicology and Physiological Ecology Program, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 444 Latham Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States); University of Georgia, Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, PO Drawer E, Aiken, SC 29802 (United States); Hopkins, William A. [Wildlife Ecotoxicology and Physiological Ecology Program, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 444 Latham Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States) and University of Georgia, Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, PO Drawer E, Aiken, SC 29802 (United States)]. E-mail: hopkinsw@vt.edu; Talent, Larry G. [Department of Zoology, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078 (United States)

    2007-09-15

    We examined the effects of a commonly used AChE-inhibiting pesticide on terrestrial and arboreal sprint performance, important traits for predator avoidance and prey capture, in the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis). Lizards were exposed to carbaryl (2.5, 25, and 250 {mu}g/g) and were raced before and 4, 24, and 96 h after dosing. In the terrestrial setting, exposure to low concentrations of carbaryl had stimulatory effects on performance, but exposure to the highest concentration was inhibitory. No stimulatory effects of carbaryl were noted in the arboreal environment and performance in lizards was reduced after exposure to both the medium and highest dose of carbaryl. Our findings suggest that acute exposure to high concentrations of carbaryl can have important sublethal consequences on fitness-related traits in reptiles and that arboreal locomotor performance is a more sensitive indicator of AChE-inhibiting pesticide poisoning than terrestrial locomotor performance. - Exposure to an acetylcholinesterase-inhibiting pesticide alters locomotor performance in western fence lizards.

  14. Biogeographical patterns of Myrcia s.l. (Myrtaceae) and their correlation with geological and climatic history in the Neotropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Matheus Fortes; Lucas, Eve; Sano, Paulo Takeo; Buerki, Sven; Staggemeier, Vanessa Graziele; Forest, Félix

    2017-03-01

    Many recent studies discuss the influence of climatic and geological events in the evolution of Neotropical biota by correlating these events with dated phylogenetic hypotheses. Myrtaceae is one of the most diverse Neotropical groups and it therefore a good proxy of plant diversity in the region. However, biogeographic studies on Neotropical Myrtaceae are still very limited. Myrcia s.l. is an informal group comprising three accepted genera (Calyptranthes, Marlierea and Myrcia) making up the second largest Neotropical group of Myrtaceae, totalling about 700 species distributed in nine subgroups. Exclusively Neotropical, the group occurs along the whole of the Neotropics with diversity centres in the Caribbean, the Guiana Highlands and the central-eastern Brazil. This study aims to identify the time and place of divergence of Myrcia s.l. lineages, to examine the correlation in light of geological and climatic events in the Neotropics, and to explore relationships among Neotropical biogeographic areas. A dated phylogenetic hypothesis was produced using BEAST and calibrated by placing Paleomyrtinaea princetonensis (56Ma) at the root of the tree; biogeographic analysis used the DEC model with dispersal probabilities between areas based on distance and floristic affinities. Myrcia s.l. originated in the Montane Atlantic Forest between the end of Eocene and early Miocene and this region acted as a secondary cradle for several lineages during the evolution of this group. The Caribbean region was important in the diversification of the Calyptranthes clade while the Guayana shield appears as ancestral area for an older subgroup of Myrcia s.l. The Amazon Forest has relatively low diversity of Myrcia s.l. species but appears to have been important in the initial biogeographic history of old lineages. Lowland Atlantic Forest has high species diversity but species rich lineages did not originate in the area. Diversification of most subgroups of Myrcia s.l. occurred throughout

  15. Immune defense in leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Armitage, Sophie A O; Broch, Jens F; Marín, Hermogenes Fernández

    2011-01-01

    To ameliorate the impact of disease, social insects combine individual innate immune defenses with collective social defenses. This implies that there are different levels of selection acting on investment in immunity, each with their own trade-offs. We present the results of a cross......-fostering experiment designed to address the influences of genotype and social rearing environment upon individual and social immune defenses. We used a multiply mating leaf-cutting ant, enabling us to test for patriline effects within a colony, as well as cross-colony matriline effects. The worker's father influenced...... both individual innate immunity (constitutive antibacterial activity) and the size of the metapleural gland, which secretes antimicrobial compounds and functions in individual and social defense, indicating multiple mating could have important consequences for both defense types. However, the primarily...

  16. Ex-ante Evaluation von Investitionsalternativen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Müller

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Der Beitrag zeigt, wie mit Hilfe der Methode der agentenbasierten Modellierung und Simulation (ABMS ein Beitrag zur ex-ante Policy-Beratung geleistet werden kann. Anhand eines exemplarischen Anwendungsfalls, der VISIBLE Simulationsumgebung („Virtual Simulation Lab for the Analysis of Investments in Learning and Education“, diskutieren wir die Konsequenzen unterschiedlicher Kooperationsförderinstrumente für Wissensdiffusionsprozesse in Netzwerken am Beispiel der Region Heilbronn-Franken. Die Simulationsergebnisse zeigen, dass die strukturelle Konfiguration eines regionalen Innovationssystems eine zentrale Bedeutung für die Gestaltung von Kooperationsfördermaßnahmen hat und dass Interventionen, die darauf abzielen, Wissenstransfer zwischen den Akteuren anzuregen, genau die entgegengesetzten Wirkungen entfalten können.

  17. Swarm controlled emergence for ant clustering

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Scheidler, Alexander; Merkle, Daniel; Middendorf, Martin

    2013-01-01

    .g. moving robots, and clustering algorithms. Design/methodology/approach: Different types of control agents for that ant clustering model are designed by introducing slight changes to the behavioural rules of the normal agents. The clustering behaviour of the resulting swarms is investigated by extensive...... for future research to investigate the application of the method in other swarm systems. Swarm controlled emergence might be applied to control emergent effects in computing systems that consist of many autonomous components which make decentralized decisions based on local information. Practical...... simulation studies. Findings: It is shown that complex behavior can emerge in systems with two types of agents (normal agents and control agents). For a particular behavior of the control agents, an interesting swarm size dependent effect was found. The behaviour prevents clustering when the number...

  18. Discrimination Behavior in the Supercolonial Pharaoh Ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pontieri, Luigi

    The majority of eusocial insect species live in small, kin structured colonies that are mutually aggressive and rarely interact. By contrast, a restricted group of ant species show a peculiar social organization called unicoloniality, where colonies can grow to vast networks of geographically...... and genetic distance between colony pairs, further confirming the important role of endogenous cues in the nestmate recognition of this species. The third chapter presents a methodological study on the best procedures for identifying chemical compounds used for nestmate recognition in social insects. We first...... evaluated the power of different combinations of data transformation and chemical distance calculation in differentiating between true nestmate recognition (NMR) cues and other compounds. We found that particular combinations of statistical procedures are more effective in differentiating NMR cues from...

  19. Revisionary notes on the fungus-growing ant genus Mycetarotes Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae Notas sobre as formigas cultivadoras de fungos do gênero Mycetarotes Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio José Mayhé-Nunes

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Mycetarotes is a small genus of the exclusively Neotropical fungus-growing ants, that includes M. parallelus (Emery, M. senticosus Kempf, M. acutus Mayhé-Nunes and M. carinatus Mayhé-Nunes. We hereby revise historical and recent information regarding Mycetarotes species for the first time, providing an identification key to workers, diagnoses, synoptic illustrated redescriptions of the species, including those of sexuals when known, updates of distributional records, and nest pictures of M. carinatus and M. parallelus. We comment the taxonomy and phylogenetic relationships among Mycetarotes and related genera, and on their geographical distribution. The available biological information on the genus is summarized.O gênero Mycetarotes inclui quatro espécies de formigas cultivadoras de fungos, exclusivamente encontradas na região Neotropical: M. parallelus (Emery, M. senticosus Kempf, M. acutus Mayhé-Nunes and M. carinatus Mayhé-Nunes. Apresentamos pela primeira vez um resumo sobre as informações disponíveis para as espécies do gênero, fornecendo uma chave para a identificação das operárias, diagnoses e redescrições sinópticas ilustradas das espécies, incluindo as dos alados, quando conhecidos, atualização dos registros de distribuição e fotografias dos ninhos de M. carinatus e M. parallelus. Comentamos a taxonomia e as relações de parentesco entre Mycetarotes e gêneros cognatos, e sobre sua distribuição geográfica. As informações biológicas disponíveis sobre o gênero também foram resumidas.

  20. Entomopathogens Isolated from Invasive Ants and Tests of Their Pathogenicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Fernanda Miori de Zarzuela

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Some ant species cause severe ecological and health impact in urban areas. Many attempts have been tested to control such species, although they do not always succeed. Biological control is an alternative to chemical control and has gained great prominence in research, and fungi and nematodes are among the successful organisms controlling insects. This study aimed to clarify some questions regarding the biological control of ants. Invasive ant species in Brazil had their nests evaluated for the presence of entomopathogens. Isolated entomopathogens were later applied in colonies of Monomorium floricola under laboratory conditions to evaluate their effectiveness and the behavior of the ant colonies after treatment. The entomopathogenic nematodes Heterorhabditis sp. and Steinernema sp. and the fungi Beauveria bassiana, Metarhizium anisopliae, and Paecilomyces sp. were isolated from the invasive ant nests. M. floricola colonies treated with Steinernema sp. and Heterorhabditis sp. showed a higher mortality of workers than control. The fungus Beauveria bassiana caused higher mortality of M. floricola workers. However, no colony reduction or elimination was observed in any treatment. The defensive behaviors of ants, such as grooming behavior and colony budding, must be considered when using fungi and nematodes for biological control of ants.