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Sample records for neotropical salamander populations

  1. In search of critically endangered species: the current situation of two tiny salamander species in the Neotropical mountains of Mexico.

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    Adriana Sandoval-Comte

    Full Text Available Worldwide, one in every three species of amphibian is endangered, 39 species have gone extinct in the last 500 years and another 130 species are suspected to have gone extinct in recent decades. Of the amphibians, salamanders have the highest portion of their species in one of the risk categories, even higher than the frogs. To date there have been few studies that have used recent field data to examine the status of populations of endangered salamanders. In this study we evaluate the current situation of two tiny salamanders, Parvimolge townsendi and Thorius pennatulus, both of which are distributed at intermediate elevations in the mountains of the northern Neotropics and are considered to be critically endangered; the first has been proposed as possibly extinct. By carrying out exhaustive surveys in both historical and potentially suitable sites for these two species, we evaluated their abundance and the characteristics of their habitats, and we estimated their potential geographic distribution. We visited 22 sites, investing 672 person-hours of sampling effort in the surveys, and found 201 P. townsendi salamanders in 11 sites and only 13 T. pennatulus salamanders in 5 sites. Both species were preferentially found in cloud forest fragments that were well conserved or only moderately transformed, and some of the salamanders were found in shade coffee plantations. The potential distribution area of both species is markedly fragmented and we estimate that it has decreased by more than 48%. The results of this study highlight the importance of carrying out exhaustive, systematic field surveys to obtain accurate information about the current situation of critically endangered species, and help us better understand the crisis that amphibians are facing worldwide.

  2. In search of critically endangered species: the current situation of two tiny salamander species in the Neotropical mountains of Mexico.

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    Sandoval-Comte, Adriana; Pineda, Eduardo; Aguilar-López, José L

    2012-01-01

    Worldwide, one in every three species of amphibian is endangered, 39 species have gone extinct in the last 500 years and another 130 species are suspected to have gone extinct in recent decades. Of the amphibians, salamanders have the highest portion of their species in one of the risk categories, even higher than the frogs. To date there have been few studies that have used recent field data to examine the status of populations of endangered salamanders. In this study we evaluate the current situation of two tiny salamanders, Parvimolge townsendi and Thorius pennatulus, both of which are distributed at intermediate elevations in the mountains of the northern Neotropics and are considered to be critically endangered; the first has been proposed as possibly extinct. By carrying out exhaustive surveys in both historical and potentially suitable sites for these two species, we evaluated their abundance and the characteristics of their habitats, and we estimated their potential geographic distribution. We visited 22 sites, investing 672 person-hours of sampling effort in the surveys, and found 201 P. townsendi salamanders in 11 sites and only 13 T. pennatulus salamanders in 5 sites. Both species were preferentially found in cloud forest fragments that were well conserved or only moderately transformed, and some of the salamanders were found in shade coffee plantations. The potential distribution area of both species is markedly fragmented and we estimate that it has decreased by more than 48%. The results of this study highlight the importance of carrying out exhaustive, systematic field surveys to obtain accurate information about the current situation of critically endangered species, and help us better understand the crisis that amphibians are facing worldwide.

  3. Prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a Nicaraguan, micro-endemic Neotropical salamander, Bolitoglossa mombachoensis

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    Stark, Tariq; Laurijssens, Carlijn; Weterings, Martijn; Martel, An; Köhler, Gunther; Pasmans, Frank

    2017-01-01

    Amphibians are the most threatened terrestrial vertebrates on the planet and are iconic in the global biodiversity crisis. Their global decline caused by the fungal agent Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is well known. Declines of Mesoamerican salamanders of the family Plethodontidae, mainly

  4. Status of some populations of Mexican salamanders (Amphibia: Plethodontidae

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    Gabriela Parra-Olea

    1999-06-01

    Full Text Available Populations of Mexican plethodontid salamanders have been surveyed non-systematically over the last 25 years. In light of many reports of disappearance of amphibians around the world, we checked for persistence of reported species at ten of these sites. All of the commoner species persist (we observed individuals representing a total of 30 species. While observed densities of many species of Mexican plethodontids are lower to much lower than was the case 20 to 25 years ago, evidence for recent extinctions, such as has been reported for amphibian taxa elsewhere, is equivocal or lacking. Habitat modification has contributed to difficulties in finding certain species.Poblaciones de varias especies de salamandras pletodóntidas en México han sido monitoreadas de manera no sistemática durante los últimos 25 años. Diez de éstas poblaciones fueran visitadas recientemente con el propósito de verificar la persistencia de las especies reportadas para dichas localidades. Nuestras observaciones confirman la persistencia local de más de 30 especies cuyo estatus era desconocido, aunque la frecuencia de observación de estas especies es en general menor que en fechas anteriores. Estas observaciones son particularmente relevantes dada la situación actual de preocupación por la disminución mundial de anfibios.

  5. Population trends and management opportunities for neotropical migrants

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    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...

  6. The phenology of a rare salamander (Salamandra infraimmaculata in a population breeding under unpredictable ambient conditions: a 25 year study

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    Michael R. Warburg

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available This is a long-term study (1974-1999 on the phenology of the rare, xeric- inhabiting salamander Salamandra infraimmaculata in a small isolated population during the breeding season near the breeding ponds on Mt. Carmel. This is a fringe area of the genus’ south-easternmost Palaearctic distribution. Salamanders were captured during the 25 year long study. The first years up to the 1980s the total number of salamanders increased but during the last years there seems to have been a decline. Although this could be a phase in normal population cyclic oscillations nevertheless when compared with long-term data on a European Salamandra it does not seem so. The interpretation of the species’ status is dependent on numbers of salamanders captured as well as on the duration of the study. These subjects are reviewed and discussed in this paper.

  7. Comparing population patterns to processes: abundance and survival of a forest salamander following habitat degradation.

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    Clint R V Otto

    Full Text Available Habitat degradation resulting from anthropogenic activities poses immediate and prolonged threats to biodiversity, particularly among declining amphibians. Many studies infer amphibian response to habitat degradation by correlating patterns in species occupancy or abundance with environmental effects, often without regard to the demographic processes underlying these patterns. We evaluated how retention of vertical green trees (CANOPY and coarse woody debris (CWD influenced terrestrial salamander abundance and apparent survival in recently clearcut forests. Estimated abundance of unmarked salamanders was positively related to CANOPY (β Canopy  = 0.21 (0.02-1.19; 95% CI, but not CWD (β CWD  = 0.11 (-0.13-0.35 within 3,600 m2 sites, whereas estimated abundance of unmarked salamanders was not related to CANOPY (β Canopy  = -0.01 (-0.21-0.18 or CWD (β CWD  = -0.02 (-0.23-0.19 for 9 m2 enclosures. In contrast, apparent survival of marked salamanders within our enclosures over 1 month was positively influenced by both CANOPY and CWD retention (β Canopy  = 0.73 (0.27-1.19; 95% CI and β CWD  = 1.01 (0.53-1.50. Our results indicate that environmental correlates to abundance are scale dependent reflecting habitat selection processes and organism movements after a habitat disturbance event. Our study also provides a cautionary example of how scientific inference is conditional on the response variable(s, and scale(s of measure chosen by the investigator, which can have important implications for species conservation and management. Our research highlights the need for joint evaluation of population state variables, such as abundance, and population-level process, such as survival, when assessing anthropogenic impacts on forest biodiversity.

  8. Population Structure and Evolution after Speciation of the Hokkaido Salamander (Hynobius retardatus.

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    Masatoshi Matsunami

    Full Text Available The Hokkaido salamander (Hynobius retardatus is endemic to Hokkaido Island, Japan, and shows intriguing flexible phenotypic plasticity and regional morphological diversity. However, to date, allozymes and partial mitochondria DNA sequences have provided only an outline of its demographic histories and the pattern of its genetic diversification. To understand the finer details of the population structure of this species and its evolution since speciation, we genotyped five regional populations by using 12 recently developed microsatellite polymorphic markers. We found a clear population structure with low gene flow among the five populations, but a close genetic relationship between the Teshio and Kitami populations. Our demographic analysis suggested that Teshio and Erimo had the largest effective population sizes among the five populations. These findings regarding the population structure and demography of H. retardatus improve our understanding of the faunal phylogeography on Hokkaido Island and also provide fundamental genetic information that will be useful for future studies.

  9. DEMOGRAPHY AND SPATIAL POPULATION STRUCTURE IN CALIFORNIA TIGER SALAMANDER

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    Although the causes of many amphibian declines remain mysterious, there is general agreement that human habitat alteration represents the greatest threat to amphibian populations. In January 2000 the US Fish and Wildlife Service proposed listing Santa Barbara County California Ti...

  10. Conservation genetics of extremely isolated urban populations of the northern dusky salamander (Desmognathus fuscus in New York City

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    Jason Munshi-South

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Urbanization is a major cause of amphibian decline. Stream-dwelling plethodontid salamanders are particularly susceptible to urbanization due to declining water quality and hydrological changes, but few studies have examined these taxa in cities. The northern dusky salamander (Desmognathus fuscus was once common in the New York City metropolitan area, but has substantially declined throughout the region in recent decades. We used five tetranucleotide microsatellite loci to examine population differentiation, genetic variation, and bottlenecks among five remnant urban populations of dusky salamanders in NYC. These genetic measures provide information on isolation, prevalence of inbreeding, long-term prospects for population persistence, and potential for evolutionary responses to future environmental change. All populations were genetically differentiated from each other, and the most isolated populations in Manhattan have maintained very little genetic variation (i.e. <20% heterozygosity. A majority of the populations also exhibited evidence of genetic bottlenecks. These findings contrast with published estimates of high genetic variation within and lack of structure between populations of other desmognathine salamanders sampled over similar or larger spatial scales. Declines in genetic variation likely resulted from population extirpations and the degradation of stream and terrestrial paths for dispersal in NYC. Loss of genetic variability in populations isolated by human development may be an underappreciated cause and/or consequence of the decline of this species in urbanized areas of the northeast USA.

  11. Current and historical drivers of landscape genetic structure differ in core and peripheral salamander populations.

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    Rachael Y Dudaniec

    Full Text Available With predicted decreases in genetic diversity and greater genetic differentiation at range peripheries relative to their cores, it can be difficult to distinguish between the roles of current disturbance versus historic processes in shaping contemporary genetic patterns. To address this problem, we test for differences in historic demography and landscape genetic structure of coastal giant salamanders (Dicamptodon tenebrosus in two core regions (Washington State, United States versus the species' northern peripheral region (British Columbia, Canada where the species is listed as threatened. Coalescent-based demographic simulations were consistent with a pattern of post-glacial range expansion, with both ancestral and current estimates of effective population size being much larger within the core region relative to the periphery. However, contrary to predictions of recent human-induced population decline in the less genetically diverse peripheral region, there was no genetic signature of population size change. Effects of current demographic processes on genetic structure were evident using a resistance-based landscape genetics approach. Among core populations, genetic structure was best explained by length of the growing season and isolation by resistance (i.e. a 'flat' landscape, but at the periphery, topography (slope and elevation had the greatest influence on genetic structure. Although reduced genetic variation at the range periphery of D. tenebrosus appears to be largely the result of biogeographical history rather than recent impacts, our analyses suggest that inherent landscape features act to alter dispersal pathways uniquely in different parts of the species' geographic range, with implications for habitat management.

  12. Bayesian salamanders: analysing the demography of an underground population of the European plethodontid Speleomantes strinatii with state-space modelling

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    Salvidio Sebastiano

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has been suggested that Plethodontid salamanders are excellent candidates for indicating ecosystem health. However, detailed, long-term data sets of their populations are rare, limiting our understanding of the demographic processes underlying their population fluctuations. Here we present a demographic analysis based on a 1996 - 2008 data set on an underground population of Speleomantes strinatii (Aellen in NW Italy. We utilised a Bayesian state-space approach allowing us to parameterise a stage-structured Lefkovitch model. We used all the available population data from annual temporary removal experiments to provide us with the baseline data on the numbers of juveniles, subadults and adult males and females present at any given time. Results Sampling the posterior chains of the converged state-space model gives us the likelihood distributions of the state-specific demographic rates and the associated uncertainty of these estimates. Analysing the resulting parameterised Lefkovitch matrices shows that the population growth is very close to 1, and that at population equilibrium we expect half of the individuals present to be adults of reproductive age which is what we also observe in the data. Elasticity analysis shows that adult survival is the key determinant for population growth. Conclusion This analysis demonstrates how an understanding of population demography can be gained from structured population data even in a case where following marked individuals over their whole lifespan is not practical.

  13. Growth, survival, longevity, and population size of the Big Mouth Cave salamander (Gyrinophilus palleucus necturoides) from the type locality in Grundy County, Tennessee, USA

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    Niemiller, Matthew L.; Glorioso, Brad M.; Fenolio, Dante B.; Reynolds, R. Graham; Taylor, Steven J.; Miller, Brian T.

    2016-01-01

    Salamander species that live entirely in subterranean habitats have evolved adaptations that allow them to cope with perpetual darkness and limited energy resources. We conducted a 26-month mark–recapture study to better understand the individual growth and demography of a population of the Big Mouth Cave Salamander (Gyrinophilus palleucus necturoides). We employed a growth model to estimate growth rates, age at sexual maturity, and longevity, and an open population model to estimate population size, density, detectability, and survival rates. Furthermore, we examined cover use and evidence of potential predation. Individuals probably reach sexual maturity in 3–5 years and live at least nine years. Survival rates were generally high (>75%) but declined during the study. More than 30% of captured salamanders had regenerating tails or tail damage, which presumably represent predation attempts by conspecifics or crayfishes. Most salamanders (>90%) were found under cover (e.g., rocks, trash, decaying plant material). Based on 11 surveys during the study, population size estimates ranged from 21 to 104 individuals in the ca. 710 m2 study area. Previous surveys indicated that this population experienced a significant decline from the early 1970s through the 1990s, perhaps related to silvicultural and agricultural practices. However, our data suggest that this population has either recovered or stabilized during the past 20 years. Differences in relative abundance between early surveys and our survey could be associated with differences in survey methods or sampling conditions rather than an increase in population size. Regardless, our study demonstrates that this population is larger than previously thought and is in no immediate risk of extirpation, though it does appear to exhibit higher rates of predation than expected for a species believed to be an apex predator of subterranean food webs.

  14. Reduced inflammation in expanding populations of a neotropical bird species.

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    Bailly, Juliette; Garnier, Stéphane; Khimoun, Aurélie; Arnoux, Emilie; Eraud, Cyril; Goret, Jean-Yves; Luglia, Thomas; Gaucher, Philippe; Faivre, Bruno

    2016-10-01

    The loss of regulating agents such as parasites is among the most important changes in biotic interactions experienced by populations established in newly colonized areas. Under a relaxed parasite pressure, individuals investing less in costly immune mechanisms might experience a selective advantage and become successful colonizers as they re-allocate resources to other fitness-related traits. Accordingly, a refinement of the evolution of increased competitive ability (EICA) hypothesis proposed that immunity of invasive populations has evolved toward a reduced investment in innate immunity, the most costly component of immunity, and an increased humoral immunity that is less costly. Biogeographical approaches comparing populations between native and expansion ranges are particularly relevant in exploring this issue, but remain very scarce. We conducted a biogeographical comparison between populations of Spectacled Thrush ( Turdus nudigenis ) from the native area (South America) and from the expansion range (Caribbean islands). First, we compared haemosporidian prevalence and circulating haptoglobin (an acute-phase protein produced during inflammation). Second, we challenged captive birds from both ranges with Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharides ( LPS ) and measured postchallenge haptoglobin production and body mass change. Birds from the expansion range showed lower haemosporidian prevalence and lower levels of haptoglobin than birds from the native range. In addition, the inflammation elicited by LPS injection and its associated cost in terms of body mass loss were lower in birds from the expansion range than in birds from the native range. In accordance with the enemy release hypothesis, our results suggest that range expansion is associated with a reduced infection risk. Our study also supports the hypothesis that individuals from newly established populations have evolved mechanisms to dampen the inflammatory response and are in accordance with one prediction

  15. Bromeliad Selection by Two Salamander Species in a Harsh Environment

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    Ruano-Fajardo, Gustavo; Rovito, Sean M.; Ladle, Richard J.

    2014-01-01

    Bromeliad phytotelmata are frequently used by several Neotropical amphibian taxa, possibly due to their high humidity, microclimatic stability, and role as a refuge from predators. Indeed, the ability of phytotelmata to buffer against adverse environmental conditions may be instrumental in allowing some amphibian species to survive during periods of environmental change or to colonize sub-optimal habitats. Association between bromeliad traits and salamanders has not been studied at a fine scale, despite the intimate association of many salamander species with bromeliads. Here, we identify microhabitat characteristics of epiphytic bromeliads used by two species of the Bolitoglossa morio group (B. morio and B. pacaya) in forest disturbed by volcanic activity in Guatemala. Specifically, we measured multiple variables for bromeliads (height and position in tree, phytotelma water temperature and pH, canopy cover, phytotelma size, leaf size, and tree diameter at breast height), as well as salamander size. We employed a DNA barcoding approach to identify salamanders. We found that B. morio and B. pacaya occurred in microsympatry in bromeliads and that phytotelmata size and temperature of bromeliad microhabitat were the most important factors associated with the presence of salamanders. Moreover, phytotelmata with higher pH contained larger salamanders, suggesting that larger salamanders or aggregated individuals might modify pH. These results show that bromeliad selection is nonrandom with respect to microhabitat characteristics, and provide insight into the relationship between salamanders and this unique arboreal environment. PMID:24892414

  16. Bromeliad selection by two salamander species in a harsh environment.

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    Gustavo Ruano-Fajardo

    Full Text Available Bromeliad phytotelmata are frequently used by several Neotropical amphibian taxa, possibly due to their high humidity, microclimatic stability, and role as a refuge from predators. Indeed, the ability of phytotelmata to buffer against adverse environmental conditions may be instrumental in allowing some amphibian species to survive during periods of environmental change or to colonize sub-optimal habitats. Association between bromeliad traits and salamanders has not been studied at a fine scale, despite the intimate association of many salamander species with bromeliads. Here, we identify microhabitat characteristics of epiphytic bromeliads used by two species of the Bolitoglossa morio group (B. morio and B. pacaya in forest disturbed by volcanic activity in Guatemala. Specifically, we measured multiple variables for bromeliads (height and position in tree, phytotelma water temperature and pH, canopy cover, phytotelma size, leaf size, and tree diameter at breast height, as well as salamander size. We employed a DNA barcoding approach to identify salamanders. We found that B. morio and B. pacaya occurred in microsympatry in bromeliads and that phytotelmata size and temperature of bromeliad microhabitat were the most important factors associated with the presence of salamanders. Moreover, phytotelmata with higher pH contained larger salamanders, suggesting that larger salamanders or aggregated individuals might modify pH. These results show that bromeliad selection is nonrandom with respect to microhabitat characteristics, and provide insight into the relationship between salamanders and this unique arboreal environment.

  17. Invasive Asian Earthworms Negatively Impact Keystone Terrestrial Salamanders.

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    Julie L Ziemba

    Full Text Available Asian pheretimoid earthworms (e.g. Amynthas and Metaphire spp. are invading North American forests and consuming the vital detrital layer that forest floor biota [including the keystone species Plethodon cinereus (Eastern Red-backed Salamander], rely on for protection, food, and habitat. Plethodon cinereus population declines have been associated with leaf litter loss following the invasion of several exotic earthworm species, but there have been few studies on the specific interactions between pheretimoid earthworms and P. cinereus. Since some species of large and active pheretimoids spatially overlap with salamanders beneath natural cover objects and in detritus, they may distinctively compound the negative consequences of earthworm-mediated resource degradation by physically disturbing important salamander activities (foraging, mating, and egg brooding. We predicted that earthworms would exclude salamanders from high quality microhabitat, reduce foraging efficiency, and negatively affect salamander fitness. In laboratory trials, salamanders used lower quality microhabitat and consumed fewer flies in the presence of earthworms. In a natural field experiment, conducted on salamander populations from "non-invaded" and "pheretimoid invaded" sites in Ohio, salamanders and earthworms shared cover objects ~60% less than expected. Earthworm abundance was negatively associated with juvenile and male salamander abundance, but had no relationship with female salamander abundance. There was no effect of pheretimoid invasion on salamander body condition. Juvenile and non-resident male salamanders do not hold stable territories centered beneath cover objects such as rocks or logs, which results in reduced access to prey, greater risk of desiccation, and dispersal pressure. Habitat degradation and physical exclusion of salamanders from cover objects may hinder juvenile and male salamander performance, ultimately reducing recruitment and salamander abundance

  18. Invasive Asian Earthworms Negatively Impact Keystone Terrestrial Salamanders.

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    Ziemba, Julie L; Hickerson, Cari-Ann M; Anthony, Carl D

    2016-01-01

    Asian pheretimoid earthworms (e.g. Amynthas and Metaphire spp.) are invading North American forests and consuming the vital detrital layer that forest floor biota [including the keystone species Plethodon cinereus (Eastern Red-backed Salamander)], rely on for protection, food, and habitat. Plethodon cinereus population declines have been associated with leaf litter loss following the invasion of several exotic earthworm species, but there have been few studies on the specific interactions between pheretimoid earthworms and P. cinereus. Since some species of large and active pheretimoids spatially overlap with salamanders beneath natural cover objects and in detritus, they may distinctively compound the negative consequences of earthworm-mediated resource degradation by physically disturbing important salamander activities (foraging, mating, and egg brooding). We predicted that earthworms would exclude salamanders from high quality microhabitat, reduce foraging efficiency, and negatively affect salamander fitness. In laboratory trials, salamanders used lower quality microhabitat and consumed fewer flies in the presence of earthworms. In a natural field experiment, conducted on salamander populations from "non-invaded" and "pheretimoid invaded" sites in Ohio, salamanders and earthworms shared cover objects ~60% less than expected. Earthworm abundance was negatively associated with juvenile and male salamander abundance, but had no relationship with female salamander abundance. There was no effect of pheretimoid invasion on salamander body condition. Juvenile and non-resident male salamanders do not hold stable territories centered beneath cover objects such as rocks or logs, which results in reduced access to prey, greater risk of desiccation, and dispersal pressure. Habitat degradation and physical exclusion of salamanders from cover objects may hinder juvenile and male salamander performance, ultimately reducing recruitment and salamander abundance following Asian

  19. Population structure and genetic variability of mainland and insular populations of the Neotropical water rat, Nectomys squamipes (Rodentia, Sigmodontinae

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    Francisca C. Almeida

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Seven microsatellite loci were used to investigate the genetic variability and structure of six mainland and two island populations of the Neotropical water rat Nectomys squamipes, a South American semi-aquatic rodent species with a wide distribution. High levels of variability were found within mainland populations while island populations were less variable but the more differentiated in respect to allele number and frequency. The time of biological divergence between mainland and island populations coincided with geological data. A significant geographic structure was found in mainland populations (theta = 0.099; rho = 0.086 although the degree of differentiation was relatively low in respect to the distance between surveyed localities (24 to 740 km. Genetic and geographic distances were not positively correlated as previously found with random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD markers. Significant but low genetic differentiation in the mainland and lack of isolation by distance can be explained by large population size and/or recent population expansion. Additionally, the agreement between the age of geologic events (sea level fluctuations and divergence times for insular populations points to a good reference for molecular clock calibration to associate recent environmental changes and the distribution pattern of small mammals in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest.

  20. Maximizing Sampling Efficiency and Minimizing Uncertainty in Presence/Absence Classification of Rare Salamander Populations

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    2008-10-31

    of the Apalachicola River drainage. Although this proposed division in classification appears to be generally accepted by the herpetological community...breeding in small forest ponds. Herpetological Review 33(4):275-280. Carle, F. L. and M. R. Strub. 1978. A new method for estimating population size...gopher frogs (Rana capito) and southern leopard frogs (Rana sphenocephala). Journal of Herpetology 42: 97-103. Grevstad, F.S. 2005. Simulating

  1. 77 FR 36287 - Proposed Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the California Tiger Salamander, Calaveras...

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    2012-06-18

    ...-FXES11120800000F2-123-F2] Proposed Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the California Tiger Salamander... animal, the threatened Central California Distinct Population Segment of the California tiger salamander (tiger salamander). The applicant would implement a conservation program to minimize and mitigate the...

  2. Efficacy of riparian buffers in mitigating local populations declines and the effects of even-aged timber harvest on larval salamanders

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    William E Peterman; Raymond D. Semlitch

    2009-01-01

    Headwater streams are an important and prevalent feature of the eastern North American landscape.These streams provide a wealth of ecosystem services and support tremendous biological diversity, which is predominated by salamanders in the Appalachian region. Salamanders are ubiquitous throughout the region, contributing a significant...

  3. Informing recovery in a human-transformed landscape: Drought-mediated coexistence alters population trends of an imperiled salamander and invasive predators

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    Hossack, Blake R.; Honeycutt, Richard; Sigafus, Brent H.; Muths, Erin L.; Crawford, Catherine L.; Jones, Thomas R.; Sorensen, Jeff A.; Rorabaugh, James C.; Chambert, Thierry

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the additive or interactive threats of habitat transformation and invasive species is critical for conservation, especially where climate change is expected to increase the severity or frequency of drought. In the arid southwestern USA, this combination of stressors has caused widespread declines of native aquatic and semi-aquatic species. Achieving resilience to drought and other effects of climate change may depend upon continued management, so understanding the combined effects of stressors is important. We used Bayesian hierarchical models fitted with 10-years of pond-based monitoring surveys for the federally-endangered Sonoran Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium stebbinsi) and invasive predators (fishes and American Bullfrogs, Lithobates catesbeianus) that threaten native species. We estimated trends in occupancy of salamanders and invasive predators while accounting for hydrological dynamics of ponds, then used a two-species interaction model to directly estimate how invasive predators affected salamander occupancy. We also tested a conceptual model that predicted that drought, by limiting the distribution of invasive predators, could ultimately benefit native species. Even though occupancy of invasive predators was stationary and their presence in a pond reduced the probability of salamander presence by 23%, occupancy of Sonoran Tiger Salamanders increased, annually, by 2.2%. Occupancy of salamanders and invasive predators both declined dramatically following the 5th consecutive year of drought. Salamander occupancy recovered quickly after return to non-drought conditions, while occupancy of invasive predators remained suppressed. Models that incorporated three time-lagged periods (1 to 4 years) of local moisture conditions confirmed that salamanders and invasive predators responded differently to drought, reflecting how life-history strategies shape responses to disturbances. The positive 10-year trend in salamander occupancy and their

  4. Drastic Population Size Change in Two Populations of the Golden-Striped Salamander over a Forty-Year Period—Are Eucalypt Plantations to Blame?

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    Jan W. Arntzen

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Over the last half century the Iberian peninsula has seen the large scale planting of exotic gum trees (Eucalyptus sp. therewith reducing space for native wildlife. An additional effect of the gum tree plantations may be the lowering of the water table in adjacent streams, to which amphibian species with a larval niche in the running sections of small streams would be especially susceptible. In northwestern Iberia that niche is occupied by the Golden-striped salamander, Chioglossa lusitanica. I here report on the demographic trends of two C. lusitanica populations over a forty-year period, in two areas of one mountain range near Porto in northwestern Portugal. In both areas advantage was taken of the migration pattern of C. lusitanica to sites for aestivation and breeding in summer and fall. The area of the Silveirinhos brook was transformed in a plantation of gum trees shortly after the research started, while the area of Poço do Inferno remained virtually unaffected. At Silveirinhos the adult C. lusitanica population declined by one or two orders of magnitude, from ca. 1500 individuals to less than 50 at present. Demographic models that operate under a uniform larval mortality yielded population sizes that are compatible with field observations, including the late onset of the decline at 14 or more years after the planting of the gum trees and the near-extinction at year 32. An alternative reason for the relatively recent population collapse of C. lusitanica may have been disease, but no sick individuals or corpses have become available for clinical investigation. Conversely, the control population at Poço do Inferno increased in size by a factor of five or more. These data support the hypothesis that gum tree plantations have a strong negative effect on C. lusitanica. The population size increase at Poço do Inferno is probably attributable to the installation of wastewater treatment in the adjacent town of Valongo, with a discharge in the

  5. Population history, phylogeography, and conservation genetics of the last Neotropical mega-herbivore, the lowland tapir (Tapirus terrestris

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    de Thoisy Benoit

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding the forces that shaped Neotropical diversity is central issue to explain tropical biodiversity and inform conservation action; yet few studies have examined large, widespread species. Lowland tapir (Tapirus terrrestris, Perissodactyla, Tapiridae is the largest Neotropical herbivore whose ancestors arrived in South America during the Great American Biotic Interchange. A Pleistocene diversification is inferred for the genus Tapirus from the fossil record, but only two species survived the Pleistocene megafauna extinction. Here, we investigate the history of lowland tapir as revealed by variation at the mitochondrial gene Cytochrome b, compare it to the fossil data, and explore mechanisms that could have shaped the observed structure of current populations. Results Separate methodological approaches found mutually exclusive divergence times for lowland tapir, either in the late or in the early Pleistocene, although a late Pleistocene divergence is more in tune with the fossil record. Bayesian analysis favored mountain tapir (T. pinchaque paraphyly in relation to lowland tapir over reciprocal monophyly, corroborating the inferences from the fossil data these species are sister taxa. A coalescent-based analysis rejected a null hypothesis of allopatric divergence, suggesting a complex history. Based on the geographic distribution of haplotypes we propose (i a central role for western Amazonia in tapir diversification, with a key role of the ecological gradient along the transition between Andean subcloud forests and Amazon lowland forest, and (ii that the Amazon river acted as an barrier to gene flow. Finally, the branching patterns and estimates based on nucleotide diversity indicate a population expansion after the Last Glacial Maximum. Conclusions This study is the first examining lowland tapir phylogeography. Climatic events at the end of the Pleistocene, parapatric speciation, divergence along the Andean foothill

  6. Population history, phylogeography, and conservation genetics of the last Neotropical mega-herbivore, the lowland tapir (Tapirus terrestris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Thoisy, Benoit; da Silva, Anders Gonçalves; Ruiz-García, Manuel; Tapia, Andrés; Ramirez, Oswaldo; Arana, Margarita; Quse, Viviana; Paz-y-Miño, César; Tobler, Mathias; Pedraza, Carlos; Lavergne, Anne

    2010-09-14

    Understanding the forces that shaped Neotropical diversity is central issue to explain tropical biodiversity and inform conservation action; yet few studies have examined large, widespread species. Lowland tapir (Tapirus terrrestris, Perissodactyla, Tapiridae) is the largest Neotropical herbivore whose ancestors arrived in South America during the Great American Biotic Interchange. A Pleistocene diversification is inferred for the genus Tapirus from the fossil record, but only two species survived the Pleistocene megafauna extinction. Here, we investigate the history of lowland tapir as revealed by variation at the mitochondrial gene Cytochrome b, compare it to the fossil data, and explore mechanisms that could have shaped the observed structure of current populations. Separate methodological approaches found mutually exclusive divergence times for lowland tapir, either in the late or in the early Pleistocene, although a late Pleistocene divergence is more in tune with the fossil record. Bayesian analysis favored mountain tapir (T. pinchaque) paraphyly in relation to lowland tapir over reciprocal monophyly, corroborating the inferences from the fossil data these species are sister taxa. A coalescent-based analysis rejected a null hypothesis of allopatric divergence, suggesting a complex history. Based on the geographic distribution of haplotypes we propose (i) a central role for western Amazonia in tapir diversification, with a key role of the ecological gradient along the transition between Andean subcloud forests and Amazon lowland forest, and (ii) that the Amazon river acted as an barrier to gene flow. Finally, the branching patterns and estimates based on nucleotide diversity indicate a population expansion after the Last Glacial Maximum. This study is the first examining lowland tapir phylogeography. Climatic events at the end of the Pleistocene, parapatric speciation, divergence along the Andean foothill, and role of the Amazon river, have similarly shaped

  7. Terrestrial salamander abundance on reclaimed mountaintop removal mines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Petra Bohall; Williams, Jennifer M.

    2013-01-01

    Mountaintop removal mining, a large-scale disturbance affecting vegetation, soil structure, and topography, converts landscapes from mature forests to extensive grassland and shrubland habitats. We sampled salamanders using drift-fence arrays and coverboard transects on and near mountaintop removal mines in southern West Virginia, USA, during 2000–2002. We compared terrestrial salamander relative abundance and species richness of un-mined, intact forest with habitats on reclaimed mountaintop removal mines (reclaimed grassland, reclaimed shrubland, and fragmented forest). Salamanders within forests increased in relative abundance with increasing distance from reclaimed mine edge. Reclaimed grassland and shrubland habitats had lower relative abundance and species richness than forests. Characteristics of reclaimed habitats that likely contributed to lower salamander abundance included poor soils (dry, compacted, little organic matter, high rock content), reduced vertical structure of vegetation and little tree cover, and low litter and woody debris cover. Past research has shown that salamander populations reduced by clearcutting may rebound in 15–24 years. Time since disturbance was 7–28 years in reclaimed habitats on our study areas and salamander populations had not reached levels found in adjacent mature forests.

  8. The influence of a water current on the larval deposition pattern of females of a diverging fire salamander population (Salamandra salamandra)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krause, E.T.; Caspers, B.A.

    2015-01-01

    Fire salamanders are amphibians that exhibit a highly specific reproductive mode termed ovo-viviparity. The eggs develop inside their mothers, and the females give birth to fully developed larvae. The larvae in our study area cluster in two distinct genetic groups that can be linked directly to the

  9. Impact of valley fills on streamside salamanders in southern West Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Petra Bohall; Williams, Jennifer M.

    2013-01-01

    Valley fills associated with mountaintop-removal mining bury stream headwaters and affect water quality and ecological function of reaches below fills. We quantified relative abundance of streamside salamanders in southern West Virginia during 2002 in three streams below valley fills (VFS) and in three reference streams (RS). We surveyed 36 10- × 2-m stream transects, once in summer and fall, paired by order and structure. Of 2,343 salamanders captured, 66.7% were from RS. Total salamanders (adults plus larvae) were more abundant in RS than VFS for first-order and second-order reaches. Adult salamanders had greater abundance in first-order reaches of RS than VFS. Larval salamanders were more abundant in second-order reaches of RS than VFS. No stream width or mesohabitat variables differed between VFS and RS. Only two cover variables differed. Silt cover, greater in VFS than RS first-order reaches, is a likely contributor to reduced abundance of salamanders in VFS. Second-order RS had more boulder cover than second-order VFS, which may have contributed to the higher total and larval salamander abundance in RS. Water chemistry assessments of our VFS and RS reported elevated levels of metal and ion concentrations in VFS, which can depress macroinvertebrate populations and likely affect salamander abundance. Valley fills appear to have significant negative effects on stream salamander abundance due to alterations in habitat structure, water quality and chemistry, and macroinvertebrate communities in streams below fills.

  10. A nondestructive technique to monitor the relative abundance of terrestrial salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard M. DeGraaf; Mariko. Yamasaki

    1992-01-01

    Salamanders are abundant vertebrates in many forest ecosystems, and their annual biomass production can be important in forest food webs (Pough et al. 1987). Population densities of eastern redback salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) can exceed 2 individuals/m2 in deciduous forests of the United States (Heatwole 1962, Jaeger 1980...

  11. Environmental and Anthropogenic Factors Influencing Salamanders in Riparian Forests: A Review

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    Hannah L. Clipp

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Salamanders and riparian forests are intimately interconnected. Salamanders are integral to ecosystem functions, contributing to vertebrate biomass and complex food webs in riparian forests. In turn, these forests are critical ecosystems that perform many environmental services, facilitate high biodiversity and species richness, and provide habitat to salamander populations. Due to the global decline of amphibians, it is important to understand, as thoroughly and holistically as possible, the roles of environmental parameters and the impact of human activities on salamander abundance and diversity in riparian forests. To determine the population responses of salamanders to a variety of environmental factors and anthropogenic activities, we conducted a review of published literature that compared salamander abundance and diversity, and then summarized and synthesized the data into general patterns. We identify stream quality, leaf litter and woody debris, riparian buffer width, and soil characteristics as major environmental factors influencing salamander populations in riparian forests, describe and explain salamander responses to those factors, and discuss the effects of anthropogenic activities such as timber harvest, prescribed fires, urbanization, road construction, and habitat fragmentation. This review can assist land and natural resource managers in anticipating the consequences of human activities and preparing strategic conservation plans.

  12. Differences in mating behavior between two allopatric populations of a Neotropical scorpion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivero, Paola A; Mattoni, Camilo I; Peretti, Alfredo V

    2017-08-01

    Courtship and mating behavior generally evolve rapidly in diverging populations and species. The adaptation to different environments may cause behavioral divergence in characteristics involved in mate choice. Our objective in this study was to compare the sexual behavior of two distant populations of the scorpion Bothriurus bonariensis. This species has a broad distribution in South America, inhabiting Central Argentina, Uruguay and south-eastern Brazil. It is known that in this species there is a divergence in morphological patterns (body size, coloration, allometry and fluctuating asymmetry indexes) among distant populations. Considering the differences in environmental conditions between localities, we compare the sexual behavior in intra-population and inter-population matings from Central Argentina and southern Uruguay populations. We found significant differences in mating patterns, including differences in the frequency and duration of important stimulatory courtship behaviors. In addition, most inter-population matings were unsuccessful. In this framework, the differences in reproductive behavior could indicate reproductive isolation between these populations, which coincides with their already known morphological differences. This is the first study comparing the sexual behavior of allopatric populations of scorpions; it provides new data about the degree of intraspecific geographical divergence in the sexual behavior of B. bonariensis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  13. Genetic evidence of population structuring in the neotropical freshwater fish Brycon hilarii (Valenciennes, 1850

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    A Sanches

    Full Text Available Brycon hilarii is a migratory fish widely distributed throughout the Paraguay River Basin. It is appreciated in sport fishing and for its superior meat quality. It is also the main species for tourist attraction in the Bonito region (State of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. Considering the lack of information on the genetic structure of the fish of this species, the aim of the present study was to detect the genetic variability of Brycon hilarii through RAPD markers. A total of eighty specimens collected in different seasons at four sites of the Miranda River sub-basin (Paraguay River Basin, Brazil were used for analysis. The results of genetic similarity, Shannon diversity, and AMOVA revealed differences between the sampling sites. Through AMOVA, differences between populations were more evident among the animals collected during the non-reproductive season, corresponding to a time of less movement of these fish. A population structuring model in which B. hilarii appears organized into genetically differentiated reproductive units that coexist and co-migrate through the studied system was suggested, contrasting the currently accepted idea that freshwater migratory fish form large panmictic populations in a determined hydrographic system. Despite the lack of a complete picture regarding the distribution of B. hilarii in the studied region, this initial idea on its population genetic structure could be an important contribution to providing aid for management and conservation programs of these fish.

  14. Survey of Pathogenic Chytrid Fungi (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis and B. salamandrivorans) in Salamanders from Three Mountain Ranges in Europe and the Americas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parrott, Joshua Curtis; Shepack, Alexander; Burkart, David; LaBumbard, Brandon; Scimè, Patrick; Baruch, Ethan; Catenazzi, Alessandro

    2017-06-01

    Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) is a virulent fungal pathogen that infects salamanders. It is implicated in the recent collapse of several populations of fire salamanders in Europe. This pathogen seems much like that of its sister species, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the agent responsible for anuran extinctions and extirpations worldwide, and is considered to be an emerging global threat to salamander communities. Bsal thrives at temperatures found in many mountainous regions rich in salamander species; because of this, we have screened specimens of salamanders representing 17 species inhabiting mountain ranges in three continents: The Smoky Mountains, the Swiss Alps, and the Peruvian Andes. We screened 509 salamanders, with 192 representing New World salamanders that were never tested for Bsal previously. Bsal was not detected, and Bd was mostly present at low prevalence except for one site in the Andes.

  15. SPATIALLY AUTOCORRELATED DEMOGRAPHY AND INTERPOND MIGRATION IN THE CALIFORNIA TIGER SALAMANDER (AMBYSTOME CALIFORNIENSE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    We investigated the metapopulation structure of the California tiger salamander (Ambystoma californiense) using a combination of indirect and direct methods to evaluate two key requirements of modern metapopulation models: 1) that patches support somewhat independent populations ...

  16. Predicted Changes in Climatic Niche and Climate Refugia of Conservation Priority Salamander Species in the Northeastern United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William B. Sutton

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Global climate change represents one of the most extensive and pervasive threats to wildlife populations. Amphibians, specifically salamanders, are particularly susceptible to the effects of changing climates due to their restrictive physiological requirements and low vagility; however, little is known about which landscapes and species are vulnerable to climate change. Our study objectives included, (1 evaluating species-specific predictions (based on 2050 climate projections and vulnerabilities to climate change and (2 using collective species responses to identify areas of climate refugia for conservation priority salamanders in the northeastern United States. All evaluated salamander species were projected to lose a portion of their climatic niche. Averaged projected losses ranged from 3%–100% for individual species, with the Cow Knob Salamander (Plethodon punctatus, Cheat Mountain Salamander (Plethodon nettingi, Shenandoah Mountain Salamander (Plethodon virginia, Mabee’s Salamander (Ambystoma mabeei, and Streamside Salamander (Ambystoma barbouri predicted to lose at least 97% of their landscape-scale climatic niche. The Western Allegheny Plateau was predicted to lose the greatest salamander climate refugia richness (i.e., number of species with a climatically-suitable niche in a landscape patch, whereas the Central Appalachians provided refugia for the greatest number of species during current and projected climate scenarios. Our results can be used to identify species and landscapes that are likely to be further affected by climate change and potentially resilient habitats that will provide consistent climatic conditions in the face of environmental change.

  17. Morphological variation in two genetically distinct groups of the golden-striped salamander, Chioglossa lusitanica (Amphibia: Urodela)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alexandrino, J.; Ferrand, N.; Arntzen, J.W.

    2005-01-01

    Morphometric and colour pattern variation in the endemic Iberian salamander Chioglossa lusitanica is concordant with the genetic differentiation of two groups of populations separated by the Mondego river in Portugal. Salamanders from the south have shorter digits than those from the north. Clinal

  18. Pleistocene climate changes shaped the population structure of Partamona seridoensis (Apidae, Meliponini, an endemic stingless bee from the Neotropical dry forest.

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    Elder Assis Miranda

    Full Text Available Partamona seridoensis is an endemic stingless bee from the Caatinga, a Neotropical dry forest in northeastern Brazil. Like other stingless bees, this species plays an important ecological role as a pollinator. The aim of the present study was to investigate the genetic structure and evolutionary history of P. seridoensis across its current geographic range. Workers from 84 nests from 17 localities were analyzed for COI and Cytb genic regions. The population structure tests (Bayesian phylogenetic inference, AMOVA and haplotype network consistently characterized two haplogroups (northwestern and eastern, with little gene flow between them, generating a high differentiation between them as well as among the populations within each haplogroup. The Mantel test revealed no isolation by distance. No evidence of a potential geographic barrier in the present that could explain the diversification between the P. seridoensis haplogroups was found. However, Pleistocene climatic changes may explain this differentiation, since the initial time for the P. seridoensis lineages diversification took place during the mid-Pleistocene, specifically the interglacial period, when the biota is presumed to have been more associated with dry conditions and had more restricted, fragmented geographical distribution. This event may have driven diversification by isolating the two haplogroups. Otherwise, the climatic changes in the late Pleistocene must not have drastically affected the population dynamics of P. seridoensis, since the Bayesian Skyline Plot did not reveal any substantial fluctuation in effective population size in either haplogroup. Considering its importance and the fact that it is an endemic bee from a very threatened Neotropical dry forest, the results herein could be useful to the development of conservation strategies for P. seridoensis.

  19. Pleistocene climate changes shaped the population structure of Partamona seridoensis (Apidae, Meliponini), an endemic stingless bee from the Neotropical dry forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Elder Assis; Ferreira, Kátia Maria; Carvalho, Airton Torres; Martins, Celso Feitosa; Fernandes, Carlo Rivero; Del Lama, Marco Antonio

    2017-01-01

    Partamona seridoensis is an endemic stingless bee from the Caatinga, a Neotropical dry forest in northeastern Brazil. Like other stingless bees, this species plays an important ecological role as a pollinator. The aim of the present study was to investigate the genetic structure and evolutionary history of P. seridoensis across its current geographic range. Workers from 84 nests from 17 localities were analyzed for COI and Cytb genic regions. The population structure tests (Bayesian phylogenetic inference, AMOVA and haplotype network) consistently characterized two haplogroups (northwestern and eastern), with little gene flow between them, generating a high differentiation between them as well as among the populations within each haplogroup. The Mantel test revealed no isolation by distance. No evidence of a potential geographic barrier in the present that could explain the diversification between the P. seridoensis haplogroups was found. However, Pleistocene climatic changes may explain this differentiation, since the initial time for the P. seridoensis lineages diversification took place during the mid-Pleistocene, specifically the interglacial period, when the biota is presumed to have been more associated with dry conditions and had more restricted, fragmented geographical distribution. This event may have driven diversification by isolating the two haplogroups. Otherwise, the climatic changes in the late Pleistocene must not have drastically affected the population dynamics of P. seridoensis, since the Bayesian Skyline Plot did not reveal any substantial fluctuation in effective population size in either haplogroup. Considering its importance and the fact that it is an endemic bee from a very threatened Neotropical dry forest, the results herein could be useful to the development of conservation strategies for P. seridoensis.

  20. How the fluctuations of water levels affect populations of invasive bivalve Corbicula fluminea (Müller, 1774 in a Neotropical reservoir?

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    LRP. Paschoal

    Full Text Available Corbicula fluminea is an invasive bivalve responsible for several environmental and financial problems around the globe. Despite the invasive potential of this species, it suffers certain restrictions in lentic environments due to natural phenomena that significantly affect its population structure (e.g. water column fluctuation and sunlight exposure. The present study addresses how temporal decline of the water level in a Neotropical reservoir and exposure to sunlight affect the population structure of C. fluminea. Samplings were carried out twice in the reservoir of Furnas Hydroelectric Power Station (HPS (Minas Gerais, Brazil, in 2011 and 2012. Population density, spatial distribution and mean shell length of C. fluminea were estimated for each year after sampling in 51 quadrats (0.0625m2 placed on three transects at different distances along the reservoir margins (0, 10 and 20 m from a fixed-point. We observed a predominance of C. fluminea in both years, with a simultaneous gradual decrease in density and richness of native species in the sampling area. Significant differences in density of C. fluminea were registered at different distances from the margin, and are related to the temporal variability of physical conditions of the sediment and water in these environments. We also registered a trend toward an increase in the density and aggregation of C. fluminea as we moved away from the margin, due to the greater stability of these areas (>10 m. The mean shell length of C. fluminea showed significant difference between the distinct distances from the margin and during the years, as well as the interaction of these factors (Distances vs.Years. These results were associated with the reproductive and invasive capacity of this species. This study reveals that these temporal events (especially water column fluctuation may cause alterations in density, spatial distribution and mean shell length of C. fluminea and the composition of the native

  1. 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

  2. Apparent survival of the salamander Salamandra salamandra is low because of high migratory activity

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    Schaub Michael

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding the demographic processes underlying population dynamics is a central theme in ecology. Populations decline if losses from the population (i.e., mortality and emigration exceed gains (i.e., recruitment and immigration. Amphibians are thought to exhibit little movement even though local populations often fluctuate dramatically and are likely to go exinct if there is no rescue effect through immigration from nearby populations. Terrestrial salamanders are generally portrayed as amphibians with low migratory activity. Our study uses demographic analysis as a key to unravel whether emigration or mortality is the main cause of "losses" from the population. In particular, we use the analysis to challenge the common belief that terrestrial salamanders show low migratory activity. Results The mark-recapture analysis of adult salamanders showed that monthly survival was high (> 90% without a seasonal pattern. These estimates, however, translate into rather low rates of local annual survival of only ~40% and suggest that emigration was important. The estimated probability of emigration was 49%. Conclusion Our analysis shows that terrestrial salamanders exhibit more migratory activity than commonly thought. This may be due either because the spatial extent of salamander populations is underestimated or because there is a substantial exchange of individuals between populations. Our current results are in line with several other studies that suggest high migratory activity in amphibians. In particular, many amphibian populations may be characterized by high proportions of transients and/or floaters.

  3. Cannibalistic-morph Tiger Salamanders in unexpected ecological contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLean, Kyle I.; Stockwell, Craig A.; Mushet, David M.

    2016-01-01

    Barred tiger salamanders [Ambystoma mavortium (Baird, 1850)] exhibit two trophic morphologies; a typical and a cannibalistic morph. Cannibalistic morphs, distinguished by enlarged vomerine teeth, wide heads, slender bodies, and cannibalistic tendencies, are often found where conspecifics occur at high density. During 2012 and 2013, 162 North Dakota wetlands and lakes were sampled for salamanders. Fifty-one contained A. mavortium populations; four of these contained cannibalistic morph individuals. Two populations with cannibalistic morphs occurred at sites with high abundances of conspecifics. However, the other two populations occurred at sites with unexpectedly low conspecific but high fathead minnow [Pimephales promelas (Rafinesque, 1820)] abundances. Further, no typical morphs were observed in either of these later two populations, contrasting with earlier research suggesting cannibalistic morphs only occur at low frequencies in salamander populations. Another anomaly of all four populations was the occurrence of cannibalistic morphs in permanent water sites, suggesting their presence was due to factors other than faster growth allowing them to occupy ephemeral habitats. Therefore, our findings suggest environmental factors inducing the cannibalistic morphism may be more complex than previously thought.

  4. The pioneering use of ISSR (Inter Simple Sequence Repeat in Neotropical anurans: preliminary assessment of genetic diversity in populations of Physalaemus cuvieri (Amphibia, Leiuperidae

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    Rafaela M Moresco

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The greatest diversity of anurans in the world is in Brazil and one of the major challenges is to reconcile the accelerated economic development with strategies that aim to maintain this diversity in forest fragments, often representing ESUs of some biomes. This study aimed to obtain data that will support conservation projects through the pioneering use of ISSR analysis in Neotropical anurans, estimating the intra- and interpopulation genetic diversity of four populations of P. cuvieri (Paraná and São Paulo regions. Of the 65 loci scored 58 were polymorphic, with 0.797 intrapopulation variation and 0.203 interpopulation variation. The index of interpopulation genetic differentiation (Fst proved to be high among the population of Marmeleiro-PR and the three populations of SP (Fst > 0.288; genetic dissimilarity was related to the geographical distance. The ISSR proved to be efficient and useful molecular markers in comparison with other markers most widely used for preliminary diagnosis of genetic diversity in populations of amphibians, and could be applied as a tool for future conservation projects, since they could identify potential ESUs and influence decisions on the preservation of fragments.

  5. Mating System and Effective Population Size of the Overexploited Neotropical Tree (Myroxylon peruiferum L.f.) and Their Impact on Seedling Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silvestre, Ellida de Aguiar; Schwarcz, Kaiser Dias; Grando, Carolina; de Campos, Jaqueline Bueno; Sujii, Patricia Sanae; Tambarussi, Evandro Vagner; Macrini, Camila Menezes Trindade; Pinheiro, José Baldin; Brancalion, Pedro Henrique Santin; Zucchi, Maria Imaculada

    2018-03-16

    The reproductive system of a tree species has substantial impact on genetic diversity and structure within and among natural populations. Such information, should be considered when planning tree planting for forest restoration. Here, we describe the mating system and genetic diversity of an overexploited Neotropical tree, Myroxylon peruiferum L.f. (Fabaceae) sampled from a forest remnant (10 seed trees and 200 seeds) and assess whether the effective population size of nursery-grown seedlings (148 seedlings) is sufficient to prevent inbreeding depression in reintroduced populations. Genetic analyses were performed based on 8 microsatellite loci. M. peruiferum presented a mixed mating system with evidence of biparental inbreeding (t^m-t^s = 0.118). We found low levels of genetic diversity for M. peruiferum species (allelic richness: 1.40 to 4.82; expected heterozygosity: 0.29 to 0.52). Based on Ne(v) within progeny, we suggest a sample size of 47 seed trees to achieve an effective population size of 100. The effective population sizes for the nursery-grown seedlings were much smaller Ne = 27.54-34.86) than that recommended for short term Ne ≥ 100) population conservation. Therefore, to obtain a reasonable genetic representation of native tree species and prevent problems associated with inbreeding depression, seedling production for restoration purposes may require a much larger sampling effort than is currently used, a problem that is further complicated by species with a mixed mating system. This study emphasizes the need to integrate species reproductive biology into seedling production programs and connect conservation genetics with ecological restoration.

  6. Methodological considerations for detection of terrestrial small-body salamander eDNA and implications for biodiversity conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Donald M.; Leys, Jacob E.; Dunham, Kelly E.; Oliver, Joshua C.; Schiller, Emily E.; Stephenson, Kelsey S.; Kimrey, John T.; Wooten, Jessica; Rogers, Mark W.

    2017-01-01

    Environmental DNA (eDNA) can be used as an assessment tool to detect populations of threatened species and provide fine-scale data required to make management decisions. The objectives of this project were to use quantitative PCR (qPCR) to: (i) detect spiked salamander DNA in soil, (ii) quantify eDNA degradation over time, (iii) determine detectability of salamander eDNA in a terrestrial environment using soil, faeces, and skin swabs, (iv) detect salamander eDNA in a mesocosm experiment. Salamander eDNA was positively detected in 100% of skin swabs and 66% of faecal samples and concentrations did not differ between the two sources. However, eDNA was not detected in soil samples collected from directly underneath wild-caught living salamanders. Salamander genomic DNA (gDNA) was detected in all qPCR reactions when spiked into soil at 10.0, 5.0, and 1.0 ng/g soil and spike concentration had a significant effect on detected concentrations. Only 33% of samples showed recoverable eDNA when spiked with 0.25 ng/g soil, which was the low end of eDNA detection. To determine the rate of eDNA degradation, gDNA (1 ng/g soil) was spiked into soil and quantified over seven days. Salamander eDNA concentrations decreased across days, but eDNA was still amplifiable at day 7. Salamander eDNA was detected in two of 182 mesocosm soil samples over 12 weeks (n = 52 control samples; n = 65 presence samples; n = 65 eviction samples). The discrepancy in detection success between experiments indicates the potential challenges for this method to be used as a monitoring technique for small-bodied wild terrestrial salamander populations.

  7. Population-Level Differentiation in Growth Rates and Leaf Traits in Seedlings of the Neotropical Live Oak Quercus oleoides Grown under Natural and Manipulated Precipitation Regimes

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    Jose A. Ramírez-Valiente

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Widely distributed species are normally subjected to spatial heterogeneity in environmental conditions. In sessile organisms like plants, adaptive evolution and phenotypic plasticity of key functional traits are the main mechanisms through which species can respond to environmental heterogeneity and climate change. While extended research has been carried out in temperate species in this regard, there is still limited knowledge as to how species from seasonally-dry tropical climates respond to spatial and temporal variation in environmental conditions. In fact, studies of intraspecific genetically-based differences in functional traits are still largely unknown and studies in these ecosystems have largely focused on in situ comparisons where environmental and genetic effects cannot be differentiated. In this study, we tested for ecotypic differentiation and phenotypic plasticity in leaf economics spectrum (LES traits, water use efficiency and growth rates under natural and manipulated precipitation regimes in a common garden experiment where seedlings of eight populations of the neotropical live oak Quercus oleoides were established. We also examined the extent to which intraspecific trait variation was associated with plant performance under different water availability. Similar to interspecific patterns among seasonally-dry tropical tree species, live oak populations with long and severe dry seasons had higher leaf nitrogen content and growth rates than mesic populations, which is consistent with a “fast” resource-acquisition strategy aimed to maximize carbon uptake during the wet season. Specific leaf area (SLA was the best predictor of plant performance, but contrary to expectations, it was negatively associated with relative and absolute growth rates. This observation was partially explained by the negative association between SLA and area-based photosynthetic rates, which is contrary to LES expectations but similar to other recent

  8. Effects of host species and environment on the skin microbiome of Plethodontid salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muletz-Wolz, Carly R.; Yarwood, Stephanie A.; Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Fleischer, Robert C.; Lips, Karen R.

    2018-01-01

    environment is more influential in shaping skin microbiome structure than host differences in these congeneric species, and suggest that environmental characteristics that covary with elevation influence microbiome structure. High prevalence and abundance of anti-Bd bacteria may contribute to low Bd levels in these populations of Plethodon salamanders.

  9. Acid precipitation and reproductive success of Ambystoma salamanders

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pough, R H; Wilson, R E

    1976-01-01

    The two species of mole salamander that occur in the Ithaca, New York, region (Ambystoma maculatum and A. jeffersonianum) breed in temporary ponds that are formed by accumulation of melted snow and spring rains. Water in many of these pools during the breeding season is acid; pH values as low as 3.5 have been measured. In laboratory experiments A. maculatum tolerated pHs from 6 to 10 and had greatest hatching success at pH 7 to 9. Ambystoma Jeffersonianum tolerated pH 4 to 8 and was most successful at pH 5 to 6. Mortality rose abruptly beyond the tolerance limits. The pH optimum shifted upward with increasing temperature for A. jeffersonianum and downward for A. maculatum. Judging from our laboratory studies, the acidity measured in breeding ponds should cause mortality in A. maculatum and permit normal development in A. jeffersonianum. In a four-year study of a large acidic vernal pond, 938 adult A. maculatum produced 486 metamorphosed juveniles (0.52 juvenile/adult), while 686 adult A. jeffersonianum produced 2157 juveniles (3.14 juveniles/adult). Because the effects of acid precipitation on the salamanders' breeding ponds are cumulative from year to year, profound changes in the salamander populations can be anticipated.

  10. Acid precipitation and reproductive success of Ambystoma salamanders

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pough, F H; Wilson, R E

    1977-03-01

    The two species of mole salamander that occur in the Ithaca, New York, region (Ambystoma maculatum and A. jeffersonianum) breed in temporary ponds that are formed by accumulation of melted snow and spring rains. Water in many of these pools during the breeding season is acid; pH values as low as 3.5 have been measured. In laboratory experiments A. maculatum tolerated pHs from 6 to 10 and had greatest hatching success at pH 7 to 9. Ambystoma jeffersonianum tolerated pH 4 to 8 and was most successful at pH 5 to 6. Mortality rose abruptly beyond the tolerance limits. The pH optimum shifted upward with increasing temperature for A. jeffersonianum and downward for A. maculatum. Judging from our laboratory studies, the acidity measured in breeding ponds should cause mortality in A. maculatum and permit normal development in A. jeffersonianum. In a 4 yr study of a large, acidic vernal pond, 938 adult A. maculatum produced 486 metamorphosed juveniles (0.52 juvenile/adult), while 686 adult A. jeffersonianum produced 2157 juveniles (3.14 juveniles/adult). Because the effects of acid precipitation on the salamanders' breeding ponds are cumulative from year to year, profound changes in the salamander populations can be anticipated.

  11. Detection of an enigmatic plethodontid Salamander using Environmental DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierson, Todd W.; Mckee, Anna; Spear, Stephen F.; Maerz, John C.; Camp, Carlos D.; Glenn, Travis C.

    2016-01-01

    The isolation and identification of environmental DNA (eDNA) offers a non-invasive and efficient method for the detection of rare and secretive aquatic wildlife, and it is being widely integrated into inventory and monitoring efforts. The Patch-Nosed Salamander (Urspelerpes brucei) is a tiny, recently discovered species of plethodontid salamander known only from headwater streams in a small region of Georgia and South Carolina. Here, we present results of a quantitative PCR-based eDNA assay capable of detecting Urspelerpes in more than 75% of 33 samples from five confirmed streams. We deployed the method at 31 additional streams and located three previously undocumented populations of Urspelerpes. We compare the results of our eDNA assay with our attempt to use aquatic leaf litterbags for the rapid detection of Urspelerpes and demonstrate the relative efficacy of the eDNA assay. We suggest that eDNA offers great potential for use in detecting other aquatic and semi-aquatic plethodontid salamanders.

  12. Stream water temperature limits occupancy of salamanders in mid-Atlantic protected areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Wiewel, Amber N. M.; Rice, Karen C.

    2014-01-01

    Stream ecosystems are particularly sensitive to urbanization, and tolerance of water-quality parameters is likely important to population persistence of stream salamanders. Forecasted climate and landscape changes may lead to significant changes in stream flow, chemical composition, and temperatures in coming decades. Protected areas where landscape alterations are minimized will therefore become increasingly important for salamander populations. We surveyed 29 streams at three national parks in the highly urbanized greater metropolitan area of Washington, DC. We investigated relationships among water-quality variables and occupancy of three species of stream salamanders (Desmognathus fuscus, Eurycea bislineata, and Pseudotriton ruber). With the use of a set of site-occupancy models, and accounting for imperfect detection, we found that stream-water temperature limits salamander occupancy. There was substantial uncertainty about the effects of the other water-quality variables, although both specific conductance (SC) and pH were included in competitive models. Our estimates of occupancy suggest that temperature, SC, and pH have some importance in structuring stream salamander distribution.

  13. Conservation assessment for the Siskiyou Mountains salamander and Scott Bar salamander in northern California.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vinikour, W. S.; LaGory, K. E.; Adduci, J. J.; Environmental Science Division

    2006-10-20

    The purpose of this conservation assessment is to summarize existing knowledge regarding the biology and ecology of the Siskiyou Mountains salamander and Scott Bar salamander, identify threats to the two species, and identify conservation considerations to aid federal management for persistence of the species. The conservation assessment will serve as the basis for a conservation strategy for the species.

  14. A populational survey of 45S rDNA polymorphism in the Jefferson salamander Ambystoma jeffersonianum revealed by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinzhong FU

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available The chromosomal localization of 45S ribosomal RNA genes in Ambystoma jeffersonianum was determined by fluorescence in situ hybridization with 18S rDNA fragment as a probe (FISH-rDNA. Our results revealed the presence of rDNA polymorphism among A.jeffersonianum populations in terms of number, location and FISH signal intensity on the chromosomes. Nine rDNA cytotypes were found in ten geographically isolated populations and most of them contained derivative rDNA sites. Our preliminary study provides strong indication of karyotypic diversification of A.jeffersonianum that is demonstrated by intraspecific variation of 45S rDNA cytotypes. rDNA cytotype polymorphism has been described in many other caudate amphibians. We predict that habitat isolation, low dispersal ability and decline of effective population size could facilitate the fixation and accumulation of variable rDNA cytotypes during their chromosome evolution.

  15. Effects of acid precipitation on embryonic mortality of Ambystoma salamanders in the Connecticut Valley of Massachusetts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cook, R P

    1983-01-01

    An investigation of increased embryonic mortality of the spotted salamander Ambystoma maculatum concomitant with breeding pond acidification from acid rainfall in the Connecticut Valley of Massachusetts analyzes the pH and chemistry of rain and pond water and monitored embryonic mortality in 1976 and 1977. Although acid rain continues to occur in the area and Ambystoma breeding ponds are acidic, the average pH of six ponds dropped from 5.62 to 5.10 during the study. Pond pH decreased up to 0.75 pH units following heavy rainfall. Despite this, embryonic mortality of spotted and Jefferson salamanders was low, and no significant correlation between pond pH and percent embryonic mortality was found. The size of present populations and the embryonic acid tolerance exhibited by the salamander indicate that acid rain has not had an effect in this location. 22 references, 2 figures, 4 tables.

  16. Phylogeography and genetic identification of the newly-discovered populations of torrent salamanders (Rhyacotriton cascade and R. variegatus) in the central Cascades (USA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, R.S.; Miller, Mark P.; Haig, Susan M.

    2006-01-01

    Newly discovered populations of Rhyacotritonidae were investigated for taxonomic identity, hybridization, and sympatry. Species in the genus Rhyacotriton have been historically difficult to identify using morphological characters. Mitochondrial (mtDNA) 16S ribosomal RNA sequences (491 bp) and allozymes (6 loci) were used to identify the distribution of populations occurring intermediate between the previously described ranges of R. variegatus and R. cascadae in the central Cascade Mountain region of Oregon. Allozyme and mitochondrial sequence data both indicated the presence of two distinct evolutionary lineages, with each lineage corresponding to the allopatric distribution of R. cascadae and R. variegatus. Results suggest the Willamette River acts as a phylogeographic barrier limiting the distribution of both species, although we cannot exclude the possibility that reproductive isolation also exists that reinforces species' distributions. This study extends the previously described geographical ranges of both R. cascadae and R. variegatus and defines an eastern range limit for R. variegatus conservation efforts.

  17. Decadal changes in phenology of peak abundance patterns of woodland pond salamanders in northern Wisconsin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donner, Deahn M.; Ribic, Christine; Beck, Albert J.; Higgins, Dale; Eklund, Dan; Reinecke, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Woodland ponds are important landscape features that help sustain populations of amphibians that require this aquatic habitat for successful reproduction. Species abundance patterns often reflect site-specific differences in hydrology, physical characteristics, and surrounding vegetation. Large-scale processes such as changing land cover and environmental conditions are other potential drivers influencing amphibian populations in the Upper Midwest, but little information exists on the combined effects of these factors. We used Blue-spotted (Ambystoma laterale Hallowell) and Spotted Salamander (A. maculatum Shaw) monitoring data collected at the same woodland ponds thirteen years apart to determine if changing environmental conditions and vegetation cover in surrounding landscapes influenced salamander movement phenology and abundance. Four woodland ponds in northern Wisconsin were sampled for salamanders in April 1992-1994 and 2005-2007. While Blue-spotted Salamanders were more abundant than Spotted Salamanders in all ponds, there was no change in the numbers of either species over the years. However, peak numbers of Blue-spotted Salamanders occurred 11.7 days earlier (range: 9-14 days) in the 2000s compared to the 1990s; Spotted Salamanders occurred 9.5 days earlier (range: 3 - 13 days). Air and water temperatures (April 13- 24) increased, on average, 4.8°C and 3.7°C, respectively, between the decades regardless of pond. There were no discernible changes in canopy openness in surrounding forests between decades that would have warmed the water sooner (i.e., more light penetration). Our finding that salamander breeding phenology can vary by roughly 10 days in Wisconsin contributes to growing evidence that amphibian populations have responded to changing climate conditions by shifting life-cycle events. Managers can use this information to adjust monitoring programs and forest management activities in the surrounding landscape to avoid vulnerable amphibian

  18. Geographic variation, genetic structure, and conservation unit designation in the Larch Mountain salamander (Plethodon larselli).

    Science.gov (United States)

    R. Steven Wagner; Mark P. Miller; Charles M. Crisafulli; Susan M. Haig

    2005-01-01

    The Larch Mountain salamander (Plethodon larselli Burns, 1954) is an endemic species in the Pacific northwestern United States facing threats related to habitat destruction. To facilitate development of conservation strategies, we used DNA sequences and RAPDs (random amplified polymorphic DNA) to examine differences among populations of this...

  19. The Dynamics of Two Hybrid Zones in Appalachian Salamanders of the Genus Plethodon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson G. Hairston; R. Haven Wiley; Charles K. Smith; Kenneth A. Kneidel

    1992-01-01

    Two zones of intergradation between populations of Plethodon have been studied for 18 and 20 years, respectively. The data consist of systematic scores of colors, made at least twice annually. Near Heintooga Overlook in the Balsam Mountains (Great Smoky Mountains National Park), the salamanders' cheeks are gray. Proceeding north toward the...

  20. Predators, Prey and Habitat Structure: Can Key Conservation Areas and Early Signs of Population Collapse Be Detected in Neotropical Forests?

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    Benoit de Thoisy

    Full Text Available Tropical forests with a low human population and absence of large-scale deforestation provide unique opportunities to study successful conservation strategies, which should be based on adequate monitoring tools. This study explored the conservation status of a large predator, the jaguar, considered an indicator of the maintenance of how well ecological processes are maintained. We implemented an original integrative approach, exploring successive ecosystem status proxies, from habitats and responses to threats of predators and their prey, to canopy structure and forest biomass. Niche modeling allowed identification of more suitable habitats, significantly related to canopy height and forest biomass. Capture/recapture methods showed that jaguar density was higher in habitats identified as more suitable by the niche model. Surveys of ungulates, large rodents and birds also showed higher density where jaguars were more abundant. Although jaguar density does not allow early detection of overall vertebrate community collapse, a decrease in the abundance of large terrestrial birds was noted as good first evidence of disturbance. The most promising tool comes from easily acquired LiDAR data and radar images: a decrease in canopy roughness was closely associated with the disturbance of forests and associated decreasing vertebrate biomass. This mixed approach, focusing on an apex predator, ecological modeling and remote-sensing information, not only helps detect early population declines in large mammals, but is also useful to discuss the relevance of large predators as indicators and the efficiency of conservation measures. It can also be easily extrapolated and adapted in a timely manner, since important open-source data are increasingly available and relevant for large-scale and real-time monitoring of biodiversity.

  1. Salamander occupancy in headwater stream networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, E.H.C.; Green, L.E.; Lowe, W.H.

    2009-01-01

    1. Stream ecosystems exhibit a highly consistent dendritic geometry in which linear habitat units intersect to create a hierarchical network of connected branches. 2. Ecological and life history traits of species living in streams, such as the potential for overland movement, may interact with this architecture to shape patterns of occupancy and response to disturbance. Specifically, large-scale habitat alteration that fragments stream networks and reduces connectivity may reduce the probability a stream is occupied by sensitive species, such as stream salamanders. 3. We collected habitat occupancy data on four species of stream salamanders in first-order (i.e. headwater) streams in undeveloped and urbanised regions of the eastern U.S.A. We then used an information-theoretic approach to test alternative models of salamander occupancy based on a priori predictions of the effects of network configuration, region and salamander life history. 4. Across all four species, we found that streams connected to other first-order streams had higher occupancy than those flowing directly into larger streams and rivers. For three of the four species, occupancy was lower in the urbanised region than in the undeveloped region. 5. These results demonstrate that the spatial configuration of stream networks within protected areas affects the occurrences of stream salamander species. We strongly encourage preservation of network connections between first-order streams in conservation planning and management decisions that may affect stream species.

  2. Data congruence, paedomorphosis and salamanders

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    Struck Torsten H

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The retention of ancestral juvenile characters by adult stages of descendants is called paedomorphosis. However, this process can mislead phylogenetic analyses based on morphological data, even in combination with molecular data, because the assessment if a character is primary absent or secondary lost is difficult. Thus, the detection of incongruence between morphological and molecular data is necessary to investigate the reliability of simultaneous analyses. Different methods have been proposed to detect data congruence or incongruence. Five of them (PABA, PBS, NDI, LILD, DRI are used herein to assess incongruence between morphological and molecular data in a case study addressing salamander phylogeny, which comprises several supposedly paedomorphic taxa. Therefore, previously published data sets were compiled herein. Furthermore, two strategies ameliorating effects of paedomorphosis on phylogenetic studies were tested herein using a statistical rigor. Additionally, efficiency of the different methods to assess incongruence was analyzed using this empirical data set. Finally, a test statistic is presented for all these methods except DRI. Results The addition of morphological data to molecular data results in both different positions of three of the four paedomorphic taxa and strong incongruence, but treating the morphological data using different strategies ameliorating the negative impact of paedomorphosis revokes these changes and minimizes the conflict. Of these strategies the strategy to just exclude paedomorphic character traits seem to be most beneficial. Of the three molecular partitions analyzed herein the RAG1 partition seems to be the most suitable to resolve deep salamander phylogeny. The rRNA and mtDNA partition are either too conserved or too variable, respectively. Of the different methods to detect incongruence, the NDI and PABA approaches are more conservative in the indication of incongruence than LILD and

  3. Ectoparasitic copepod infestation on a wild population of Neotropical catfish Sciades herzbergii Bloch, 1794: Histological evidences of lesions on host

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    Deborah Fogel

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed the infestation of the attached copepod species Lepeophtheirus sp on a wild population of Sciades herzbergii. The infestation and occurrence of attached copepods were related to body size, maturity and sex of host and the presence of lesions on fish skin were described. In 61 fish specimens (37 males and 24 females, total of 218 ectoparasitic copepods, including 204 mature and 14 immature stages were found. Copepods were attached to different regions of fish body without any regular pattern. The prevalence of infestation was 80.3% and intensity between 1 and 15 copepods/fish. No significant differences were found between sex or maturity and the presence of attached Lepeophtheirus sp. However, a contingency table including both sex and maturity status, and the total number of attached copepod per combined category showed a significant association. A positive correlation was found between body length of fish and intensity of infestation. Similarly, when comparing the infested fish according to group size, we found more copepods on larger individual. Attached copepods were associated with the presence of lesions visible to the naked eye. Histological analyses showed changes in cell architecture when sections of copepod-free tissues and attached copepods were compared. Keywords: Damages, Fish, Lepeophtheirus, lesions, Sea lice, Parasitism

  4. Ectoparasitic copepod infestation on a wild population of Neotropical catfish Sciades herzbergii Bloch, 1794: Histological evidences of lesions on host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogel, Deborah; Fuentes, José Luis; Soto, Luz Marina; Lafuente, Wilson; Moncayo-Estrada, Rodrigo; López, Carlos

    2017-12-01

    We analyzed the infestation of the attached copepod species Lepeophtheirus sp on a wild population of Sciades herzbergii . The infestation and occurrence of attached copepods were related to body size, maturity and sex of host and the presence of lesions on fish skin were described. In 61 fish specimens (37 males and 24 females), total of 218 ectoparasitic copepods, including 204 mature and 14 immature stages were found. Copepods were attached to different regions of fish body without any regular pattern. The prevalence of infestation was 80.3% and intensity between 1 and 15 copepods/fish. No significant differences were found between sex or maturity and the presence of attached Lepeophtheirus sp. However, a contingency table including both sex and maturity status, and the total number of attached copepod per combined category showed a significant association. A positive correlation was found between body length of fish and intensity of infestation. Similarly, when comparing the infested fish according to group size, we found more copepods on larger individual. Attached copepods were associated with the presence of lesions visible to the naked eye. Histological analyses showed changes in cell architecture when sections of copepod-free tissues and attached copepods were compared.

  5. Phylogeography of the common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus: Marked population structure, Neotropical Pleistocene vicariance and incongruence between nuclear and mtDNA markers

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    Morgante João S

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The common vampire bat Desmodus rotundus is an excellent model organism for studying ecological vicariance in the Neotropics due to its broad geographic range and its preference for forested areas as roosting sites. With the objective of testing for Pleistocene ecological vicariance, we sequenced a mitocondrial DNA (mtDNA marker and two nuclear markers (RAG2 and DRB to try to understand how Pleistocene glaciations affected the distribution of intraspecific lineages in this bat. Results Five reciprocally monophyletic clades were evident in the mitochondrial gene tree, and in most cases with high bootstrap support: Central America (CA, Amazon and Cerrado (AMC, Pantanal (PAN, Northern Atlantic Forest (NAF and Southern Atlantic Forest (SAF. The Atlantic forest clades formed a monophyletic clade with high bootstrap support, creating an east/west division for this species in South America. On the one hand, all coalescent and non-coalescent estimates point to a Pleistocene time of divergence between the clades. On the other hand, the nuclear markers showed extensive sharing of haplotypes between distant localities, a result compatible with male-biased gene flow. In order to test if the disparity between the mitochondrial and nuclear markers was due to the difference in mutation rate and effective size, we performed a coalescent simulation to examine the feasibility that, given the time of separation between the observed lineages, even with a gene flow rate close to zero, there would not be reciprocal monophyly for a neutral nuclear marker. We used the observed values of theta and an estimated mutation rate for the nuclear marker gene to perform 1000 iterations of the simulation. The results of this simulation were inconclusive: the number of iterations with and without reciprocal monophyly of one or more clades are similar. Conclusions We therefore conclude that the pattern exhibited by the common vampire bat, with marked

  6. [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.

  7. Evolution of gigantism in amphiumid salamanders.

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    Ronald M Bonett

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available The Amphiumidae contains three species of elongate, permanently aquatic salamanders with four diminutive limbs that append one, two, or three toes. Two of the species, Amphiuma means and A. tridactylum, are among the largest salamanders in the world, reaching lengths of more than one meter, whereas the third species (A. pholeter, extinct amphiumids, and closely related salamander families are relatively small. Amphiuma means and A. tridactylum are widespread species and live in a wide range of lowland aquatic habitats on the Coastal Plain of the southeastern United States, whereas A. pholeter is restricted to very specialized organic muck habitats and is syntopic with A. means. Here we present analyses of sequences of mitochondrial and nuclear loci from across the distribution of the three taxa to assess lineage diversity, relationships, and relative timing of divergence in amphiumid salamanders. In addition we analyze the evolution of gigantism in the clade. Our analyses indicate three lineages that have diverged since the late Miocene, that correspond to the three currently recognized species, but the two gigantic species are not each other's closest relatives. Given that the most closely related salamander families and fossil amphiumids from the Upper Cretaceous and Paleocene are relatively small, our results suggest at least two extreme changes in body size within the Amphuimidae. Gigantic body size either evolved once as the ancestral condition of modern amphiumas, with a subsequent strong size reduction in A. pholeter, or gigantism independently evolved twice in the modern species, A. means and A. tridactylum. These patterns are concordant with differences in habitat breadth and range size among lineages, and have implications for reproductive isolation and diversification of amphiumid salamanders.

  8. Effects of Buffering Key Habitat for Terrestrial Salamanders: Implications for the Management of the Federally Threatened Red Hills Salamander (Phaeognathus hubrichti and Other Imperiled Plethodontids

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    Joseph J. Apodaca

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Forestry practices are placing ever increasing emphasis on sustainability and the maintenance of ecological processes, biodiversity, and endangered species or populations. Balancing timber harvest and the management of imperiled species presents a particularly difficult challenge during this shift, as we often know very little about these species’ natural history and how and why silviculture practices affect their populations. Accordingly, investigation of and improvement on current management practices for threatened species is imperative. We investigated the effectiveness of habitat buffers as a management technique for the imperiled Red Hills salamander (Phaeognathus hubrichti by combining genetic, transect, and body-condition data. We found that populations where habitat buffers have been employed have higher genetic diversity and higher population densities, and individuals have better overall body condition. These results indicate that buffering the habitat of imperiled species can be an effective management tool for terrestrial salamanders. Additionally, they provide further evidence that leaving the habitat of imperiled salamanders unbuffered can have both immediate and long-term negative impacts on populations.

  9. Role of habitat complexity in predator-prey dynamics between an introduced fish and larval Long-toed Salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenison, Erin K; Litt, Andrea R.; Pilliod, David S.; McMahon, Tom E

    2016-01-01

    Predation by nonnative fishes has reduced abundance and increased extinction risk for amphibian populations worldwide. Although rare, fish and palatable amphibians have been observed to coexist where aquatic vegetation and structural complexity provide suitable refugia. We examined whether larval long-toed salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum Baird, 1849) increased use of vegetation cover in lakes with trout and whether adding vegetation structure could reduce predation risk and nonconsumptive effects (NCEs), such as reductions in body size and delayed metamorphosis. We compared use of vegetation cover by larval salamanders in lakes with and without trout and conducted a field experiment to investigate the influence of added vegetation structure on salamander body morphology and life history. The probability of catching salamanders in traps in lakes with trout was positively correlated with the proportion of submerged vegetation and surface cover. Growth rates of salamanders in enclosures with trout cues decreased as much as 85% and the probability of metamorphosis decreased by 56%. We did not find evidence that adding vegetation reduced NCEs in experimental enclosures, but salamanders in lakes with trout utilized more highly-vegetated areas which suggests that adding vegetation structure at the scale of the whole lake may facilitate coexistence between salamanders and introduced trout.

  10. Antifungal Bacteria on Woodland Salamander Skin Exhibit High Taxonomic Diversity and Geographic Variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muletz-Wolz, Carly R; DiRenzo, Graziella V; Yarwood, Stephanie A; Campbell Grant, Evan H; Fleischer, Robert C; Lips, Karen R

    2017-05-01

    protective role for these salamanders. IMPORTANCE Amphibians harbor skin bacteria that can kill an amphibian fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis Some amphibians die from B. dendrobatidis infection, whereas others do not. The bacteria that can kill B. dendrobatidis , called anti- B. dendrobatidis bacteria, are thought to influence the B. dendrobatidis infection outcome for the amphibian. Yet how anti- B. dendrobatidis bacterial species vary among amphibian species and populations is unknown. We determined the distribution of anti- B. dendrobatidis bacterial species among three salamander species ( n = 61) sampled at three localities. We identified 50 unique anti- B. dendrobatidis bacterial species and found that all of the tested salamanders were negative for B. dendrobatidis Five anti- B. dendrobatidis bacterial species were commonly detected, suggesting a stable, functional association with these salamanders. The number of anti- B. dendrobatidis bacteria per individual varied among localities but not among co-occurring salamander species, demonstrating that environment is more influential than host factors in structuring the anti- B. dendrobatidis bacterial community. These anti- B. dendrobatidis bacteria may serve a protective function for their salamander hosts. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  11. Population structure and reproduction of Deuterodon langei travassos, 1957 (Teleostei, Characidae in a neotropical stream basin from the Atlantic Forest, Southern Brazil

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    Jean Ricardo Simões Vitule

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Aspects of the biology of D. langei were studied at different sites along a longitudinal gradient formed by the Ribeirão stream basin, a Neotropical stream of the Atlantic Forest, southern Brazil. Differences were observed in population structure and reproduction along the longitudinal gradient and during the study period. Juvenile fishes occurred in high abundance, mainly in the downstream site after the rainy months. Adults occurred mainly in the intermediate and upstream sites. During their life cycle, adults optimise their reproductive strategy by concentrating the reproductive period with total spawn in a short time interval before summer rains dragged the juvenile, larval forms and/or eggs downstream. The downstream site was characterized by a wide range of microhabitats (ex. submerged grass and shallow flooded area. Thus, the species used different portions of the basin in distinct stages of its life, being ecologically adapted to variation patterns in its temporal and physical environments.Aspectos da biologia de D. langei foram estudados em diferentes locais da bacia do rio Ribeirão, um riacho litorâneo da Floresta Atlântica do sudeste do Brasil. Foram observadas diferenças na estrutura da população e na reprodução, ao longo do gradiente longitudinal da bacia e do período de estudo. Os peixes juvenis ocorreram em grande abundância, principalmente no trecho a jusante da bacia, após os meses mais chuvosos. Adultos ocorreram principalmente nos trechos intermediários e a montante. Não houve diferença significativa na relação sexual entre os locais amostrados, estações do ano, meses e classes de comprimento. O comprimento médio de primeira maturação (L50 foi o mesmo para machos e fêmeas, entre 6,1 e 7,0 cm de comprimento total (Lt. O período reprodutivo foi curto (entre o final da primavera e início do verão, antes dos meses mais chuvosos, com desova total. O Índice de Atividade Reprodutiva (IAR indicou que D

  12. Conservation genetics of the endangered Shenandoah salamander (Plethodon shenandoah, Plethodontidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, D.W.; Jung, R.E.; Sites, J.W.

    2001-01-01

    The Shenandoah salamander (Plethodon shenandoah) is restricted to three isolated talus outcrops in Shenandoah National Park, VA, USA and has one of the smallest ranges of any tetrapod vertebrate. This species was listed as endangered under the US Endangered Species Act in 1989 over concern that direct competition with the red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus), successional habitat changes, and human impacts may cause its decline and possible extinction. We address two issues herein: (1) whether extensive introgression (through long-term hybridization) is present between the two species and threatens the survival of P. shenandoah, and (2) the level of population structure within P. shenandoah. We provide evidence from mtDNA haplotypes that shows no genetic differentiation among the three isolates of P. shenandoah, suggesting that their fragmentation is a geologically recent event, and/or that the isolates are still connected by occasional gene flow. There is also no evidence for extensive introgression of alleles in either direction between P. cinereus and P. shenandoah, which suggests that P. shenandoah may not be in danger of being genetically swamped out through hybridization with P. cinereus.

  13. Cytogenetics of the Brazilian Bolitoglossa paraensis (Unterstein, 1930 salamanders (Caudata, Plethodontidae

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    Jéssica Barata da Silva

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Plethodontid salamanders of genus Bolitoglossa constitute the largest and most diverse group of salamanders, including around 20% of living caudate species. Recent studies have indicated the occurrence of five recognized species in the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest. We present here the first cytogenetic data of a Brazilian salamander, which may prove to be a useful by contribution to the cytotaxonomy of the genus. Specimens were collected near the "type" locality (Utinga, Belém, PA, Brazil. Chromosomal preparations from duodenal epithelial cells and testes were subjected to Giemsa staining, C-banding and DAPI/CMA3 fluorochrome staining. All specimens showed a karyotype with 13 bi-armed chromosome pairs (2n = 26. Nucleolar Organizer Regions, evidenced by CMA3, were located distally on the long arm of pair 7 (7q. DAPI+ heterochromatin was predominantly centromeric, with some small pericentromeric bands. Although the C-banding patterns of other Bolitoglossa species are so far unknown, cytogenetic studies conducted in other Plethodontid salamanders have demonstrated that pericentromeric heterochromatin is a useful cytological marker for identifying interspecific homeologies. Species diversification is usually accompanied by chromosomal changes. Therefore, the cytogenetic characterization of Bolitoglossa populations from the middle and western Brazilian Amazon Basin could identify differences which may lead to the identification of new species.

  14. Behavioral and Physiological Responses of Ozark Zigzag Salamanders to Stimuli from an Invasive Predator: The Armadillo

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    Adam L. Crane

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available When new predators invade a habitat, either through range extensions or introductions, prey may be at a high risk because they do not recognize the predators as dangerous. The nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus has recently expanded its range in North America. Armadillos forage by searching soil and leaf litter, consuming invertebrates and small vertebrates, including salamanders. We tested whether Ozark zigzag salamanders (Plethodon angusticlavius from a population coexisting with armadillos for about 30 years exhibit antipredator behavior in the presence of armadillo chemical cues and whether they can discriminate between stimuli from armadillos and a nonpredatory sympatric mammal (white-tailed deer, Odocoileus virginianus. Salamanders appeared to recognize substrate cues from armadillos as a threat because they increased escape behaviors and oxygen consumption. When exposed to airborne cues from armadillos, salamanders also exhibited an antipredator response by spending more time in an inconspicuous posture. Additionally, individually consistent behaviors across treatments for some response variables suggest the potential for a behavioral syndrome in this species.

  15. Skin Microbiomes of California Terrestrial Salamanders Are Influenced by Habitat More Than Host Phylogeny

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    Alicia K. Bird

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available A multitude of microorganisms live on and within plant and animal hosts, yet the ecology and evolution of these microbial communities remains poorly understood in many taxa. This study examined the extent to which environmental factors and host taxonomic identity explain microbiome variation within two salamander genera, Ensatina and Batrachoseps, in the family Plethodontidae. In particular, we assessed whether microbiome differentiation paralleled host genetic distance at three levels of taxonomy: genus and high and low clade levels within Ensatina eschscholtzii. We predicted that more genetically related host populations would have more similar microbiomes than more distantly related host populations. We found that salamander microbiomes possess bacterial species that are most likely acquired from their surrounding soil environment, but the relative representation of those bacterial species is significantly different on the skin of salamanders compared to soil. We found differences in skin microbiome alpha diversity among Ensatina higher and lower clade groups, as well as differences between Ensatina and Batrachoseps. We also found that relative microbiome composition (beta diversity did vary between Ensatina lower clades, but differences were driven by only a few clades and not correlated to clade genetic distances. We conclude this difference was likely a result of Ensatina lower clades being associated with geographic location and habitat type, as salamander identity at higher taxonomic levels (genus and Ensatina higher clades was a weak predictor of microbiome composition. These results lead us to conclude that environmental factors are likely playing a more significant role in salamander cutaneous microbiome assemblages than host-specific traits.

  16. Multiple drivers, scales, and interactions influence southern Appalachian stream salamander occupancy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cecala, Kristen K.; Maerz, John C.; Halstead, Brian J.; Frisch, John R.; Gragson, Ted L.; Hepinstall-Cymerman, Jeffrey; Leigh, David S.; Jackson, C. Rhett; Peterson, James T.; Pringle, Catherine M.

    2018-01-01

    Understanding how factors that vary in spatial scale relate to population abundance is vital to forecasting species responses to environmental change. Stream and river ecosystems are inherently hierarchical, potentially resulting in organismal responses to fine‐scale changes in patch characteristics that are conditional on the watershed context. Here, we address how populations of two salamander species are affected by interactions among hierarchical processes operating at different scales within a rapidly changing landscape of the southern Appalachian Mountains. We modeled reach‐level occupancy of larval and adult black‐bellied salamanders (Desmognathus quadramaculatus) and larval Blue Ridge two‐lined salamanders (Eurycea wilderae) as a function of 17 different terrestrial and aquatic predictor variables that varied in spatial extent. We found that salamander occurrence varied widely among streams within fully forested catchments, but also exhibited species‐specific responses to changes in local conditions. While D. quadramaculatus declined predictably in relation to losses in forest cover, larval occupancy exhibited the strongest negative response to forest loss as well as decreases in elevation. Conversely, occupancy of E. wilderae was unassociated with watershed conditions, only responding negatively to higher proportions of fast‐flowing stream habitat types. Evaluation of hierarchical relationships demonstrated that most fine‐scale variables were closely correlated with broad watershed‐scale variables, suggesting that local reach‐scale factors have relatively smaller effects within the context of the larger landscape. Our results imply that effective management of southern Appalachian stream salamanders must first focus on the larger scale condition of watersheds before management of local‐scale conditions should proceed. Our findings confirm the results of some studies while refuting the results of others, which may indicate that

  17. Ambient ultraviolet radiation causes mortality in salamander eggs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blaustein, A.R.; Edmond, B.; Kiesecker, J.M.

    1995-01-01

    Previous research has shown that amphibian species have differential sensitivity to ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation. In some anuran species, ambient levels of UV-B cause mortality in embryonic stages and hatching success is significantly reduced. Projected increases in UV-B may affect an increasing number of species. The adverse effects of UV-B may eventually be manifested at the population level and may ultimately contribute to population declines. Using field experiments, we investigated the effects of ambient UV-B on salamander (Ambystoma gracile) embryos developing at natural oviposition sites. We show that the hatching success of eggs of A. gracile shielded from UV-B is significantly higher than those not shielded from UV-B. 27 refs., 1 fig

  18. Evaluating multi-level models to test occupancy state responses of Plethodontid salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroll, Andrew J.; Garcia, Tiffany S.; Jones, Jay E.; Dugger, Catherine; Murden, Blake; Johnson, Josh; Peerman, Summer; Brintz, Ben; Rochelle, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Plethodontid salamanders are diverse and widely distributed taxa and play critical roles in ecosystem processes. Due to salamander use of structurally complex habitats, and because only a portion of a population is available for sampling, evaluation of sampling designs and estimators is critical to provide strong inference about Plethodontid ecology and responses to conservation and management activities. We conducted a simulation study to evaluate the effectiveness of multi-scale and hierarchical single-scale occupancy models in the context of a Before-After Control-Impact (BACI) experimental design with multiple levels of sampling. Also, we fit the hierarchical single-scale model to empirical data collected for Oregon slender and Ensatina salamanders across two years on 66 forest stands in the Cascade Range, Oregon, USA. All models were fit within a Bayesian framework. Estimator precision in both models improved with increasing numbers of primary and secondary sampling units, underscoring the potential gains accrued when adding secondary sampling units. Both models showed evidence of estimator bias at low detection probabilities and low sample sizes; this problem was particularly acute for the multi-scale model. Our results suggested that sufficient sample sizes at both the primary and secondary sampling levels could ameliorate this issue. Empirical data indicated Oregon slender salamander occupancy was associated strongly with the amount of coarse woody debris (posterior mean = 0.74; SD = 0.24); Ensatina occupancy was not associated with amount of coarse woody debris (posterior mean = -0.01; SD = 0.29). Our simulation results indicate that either model is suitable for use in an experimental study of Plethodontid salamanders provided that sample sizes are sufficiently large. However, hierarchical single-scale and multi-scale models describe different processes and estimate different parameters. As a result, we recommend careful consideration of study questions

  19. Evaluating Multi-Level Models to Test Occupancy State Responses of Plethodontid Salamanders.

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    Andrew J Kroll

    Full Text Available Plethodontid salamanders are diverse and widely distributed taxa and play critical roles in ecosystem processes. Due to salamander use of structurally complex habitats, and because only a portion of a population is available for sampling, evaluation of sampling designs and estimators is critical to provide strong inference about Plethodontid ecology and responses to conservation and management activities. We conducted a simulation study to evaluate the effectiveness of multi-scale and hierarchical single-scale occupancy models in the context of a Before-After Control-Impact (BACI experimental design with multiple levels of sampling. Also, we fit the hierarchical single-scale model to empirical data collected for Oregon slender and Ensatina salamanders across two years on 66 forest stands in the Cascade Range, Oregon, USA. All models were fit within a Bayesian framework. Estimator precision in both models improved with increasing numbers of primary and secondary sampling units, underscoring the potential gains accrued when adding secondary sampling units. Both models showed evidence of estimator bias at low detection probabilities and low sample sizes; this problem was particularly acute for the multi-scale model. Our results suggested that sufficient sample sizes at both the primary and secondary sampling levels could ameliorate this issue. Empirical data indicated Oregon slender salamander occupancy was associated strongly with the amount of coarse woody debris (posterior mean = 0.74; SD = 0.24; Ensatina occupancy was not associated with amount of coarse woody debris (posterior mean = -0.01; SD = 0.29. Our simulation results indicate that either model is suitable for use in an experimental study of Plethodontid salamanders provided that sample sizes are sufficiently large. However, hierarchical single-scale and multi-scale models describe different processes and estimate different parameters. As a result, we recommend careful consideration of

  20. 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...

  1. Population dynamics of the migratory fish Prochilodus lineatus in a neotropical river: the relationships with river discharge, flood pulse, El Niño and fluvial megafan behaviour

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    Marinke J. M. Stassen

    Full Text Available The relative importance of flood pulse dynamics and megafan behaviour for the Sábalo (Prochilodus lineatus catches in the neotropical Pilcomayo River is studied. The Sábalo catches can mainly be explained by decreased river discharges in the preceding years resulting in smaller inundated areas during rainy season floods and thereby in a decreased area of feeding grounds for the fishes. The decreased river discharges and the related decline of Sábalo catches in the 1990's can be linked to the 90-95 El Niño event. In 2007 the Sábalo catches were comparable to the catches before the "El Niño" event. The connectivity (continuity between the main river and flood plain areas, which is influenced by sedimentation processes, is also of great importance and very probably plays a more important role since the late 1990's.

  2. Distribution of the Sonora Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium stebbinsi) in Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hossack, Blake R.; Muths, Erin L.; Rorabaugh, James C.; Lemos Espinal, Julio A.; Sigafus, Brent H.; Chambert, Thierry A.; Carreon Arroyo, Gerardo; Hurtado Felix, David; Toyos Martinez, Daniel; Jones, Thomas R.

    2016-01-01

    The Sonoran Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium stebbinsi Lowe, 1954) was listed as federally endangered in the USA in 1997 (USFWS 1997). In the USA, the distribution of A. mavortium stebbinsi is limited to the San Rafael Valley (approximately 567 km2), between the Sierra San Antonio (called the Patagonia Mountains in Arizona) and Huachuca Mountains, and south of the Canelo Hills, Arizona (Fig. 1). The USA listing was triggered by loss of natural wetland habitats, threats from invasive predators, frequent die-offs from disease, introgression with the introduced Barred Tiger Salamander (A. mavortium mavortium), and small range and number of breeding sites that increases susceptibility to stochastic events (USFWS 1997). Small population sizes and limited gene flow have caused inbreeding, which may further reduce population viability and the potential for recovery (Jones et al. 1988; Storfer et al. 2014). 

  3. Unexpected rarity of the pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Appalachian Plethodon Salamanders: 1957-2011.

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    Carly Muletz

    Full Text Available Widespread population declines in terrestrial Plethodon salamanders occurred by the 1980s throughout the Appalachian Mountains, the center of global salamander diversity, with no evident recovery. We tested the hypothesis that the historic introduction and spread of the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd into the eastern US was followed by Plethodon population declines. We expected to detect elevated prevalence of Bd prior to population declines as observed for Central American plethodontids. We tested 1,498 Plethodon salamanders of 12 species (892 museum specimens, 606 wild individuals for the presence of Bd, and tested 94 of those for Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bs and for ranavirus. Field samples were collected in 2011 from 48 field sites across a 767 km transect. Historic samples from museum specimens were collected at five sites with the greatest number and longest duration of collection (1957-987, four of which were sampled in the field in 2011. None of the museum specimens were positive for Bd, but four P. cinereus from field surveys were positive. The overall Bd prevalence from 1957-2011 for 12 Plethodon species sampled across a 757 km transect was 0.2% (95% CI 0.1-0.7%. All 94 samples were negative for Bs and ranavirus. We conclude that known amphibian pathogens are unlikely causes for declines in these Plethodon populations. Furthermore, these exceptionally low levels of Bd, in a region known to harbor Bd, may indicate that Plethodon specific traits limit Bd infection.

  4. Reproductive biology of Ambystoma salamanders in the southeastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glorioso, Brad M.; Waddle, J. Hardin; Hefner, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Reproductive aspects of Ambystoma salamanders were investigated at sites in Louisiana (2010–12) and Mississippi (2013). Three species occurred at the Louisiana site, Spotted Salamander (A. maculatum), Marbled Salamander (A. opacum), and Mole Salamander (A. talpoideum), whereas only Spotted Salamanders were studied at the Mississippi site. A total of 162 and 71 egg masses of Spotted Salamanders were examined at the Louisiana and Mississippi sites, respectively. Significantly more Spotted Salamander eggs per egg mass were observed at the Mississippi site (x̄ = 78.2) than the Louisiana site (x̄ = 53.8; P < 0.001). The mean snout–vent length of female Spotted Salamanders at the Mississippi site (82.9 mm) was significantly larger than the Louisiana site (76.1 mm; P < 0.001). Opaque Spotted Salamander egg masses were not found at the Mississippi site, but accounted for 11% of examined egg masses at the Louisiana site. The mean number of eggs per egg mass at the Louisiana site did not differ between opaque (47.3) and clear (54.6) egg masses (P = 0.21). A total of 47 egg masses of the Mole Salamander were examined, with a mean number of 6.7 embryos per mass. Twenty-three individual nests of the Marbled Salamander were found either under or in decaying logs in the dry pond basins. There was no difference between the mean numbers of eggs per mass of attended nests (93.0) versus those that were discovered unattended (86.6; P = 0.67). Females tended to place their nests at intermediate heights within the pond basin.

  5. Phylogeography of Sardinian cave salamanders (genus Hydromantes) is mainly determined by geomorphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiari, Ylenia; van der Meijden, Arie; Mucedda, Mauro; Lourenço, João M; Hochkirch, Axel; Veith, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Detecting the factors that determine the interruption of gene flow between populations is key to understanding how speciation occurs. In this context, caves are an excellent system for studying processes of colonization, differentiation and speciation, since they represent discrete geographical units often with known geological histories. Here, we asked whether discontinuous calcareous areas and cave systems represent major barriers to gene flow within and among the five species of Sardinian cave salamanders (genus Hydromantes) and whether intraspecific genetic structure parallels geographic distance within and among caves. We generated mitochondrial cytochrome b gene sequences from 184 individuals representing 48 populations, and used a Bayesian phylogeographic approach to infer possible areas of cladogenesis for these species and reconstruct historical and current dispersal routes among distinct populations. Our results show deep genetic divergence within and among all Sardinian cave salamander species, which can mostly be attributed to the effects of mountains and discontinuities in major calcareous areas and cave systems acting as barriers to gene flow. While these salamander species can also occur outside caves, our results indicate that there is a very poor dispersal of these species between separate cave systems.

  6. Cave exploitation by an usual epigean species: a review on the current knowledge on fire salamander breeding in cave

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    Raoul Manenti

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra is a relatively common epigean amphibian, widely distributed throughout Europe, which usually gives birth to aquatic larvae. Even if epigean streams represent the most common places in which the species breeds, in some countries caves with underground waters are also used. To improve our understanding of the habitat features allowing successful breeding of salamanders in underground sites, we combined an exhaustive review of the available literature, especially the grey one, with direct observations performed from 2008 to 2017 in several natural and artificial caves of Lombardy, Liguria and Tuscany (Italy, Ariège and Provence (France. We provide a synthesis of published and unpublished caves in which the fire salamander breeding has been observed, along with a synthesis of the investigated ecological, behavioural and morphological traits. The use of underground sites is reported in several published papers and appears to be a common phenomenon not limited to single karst areas. The absence of predators, the relative stability of the aquatic habitats and the possibility to exploit new ecological resources are environmental factors that favour the breeding of the fire salamander. Our synthesis suggests that breeding of fire salamanders in caves is not a random event, but a widespread phenomenon that may be linked to specific biogeographical factors. Further insights may be obtained by performing genetic analyses on both cave and epigean populations, and considering larger landscape scales for ecological studies as well. Gene flow between salamanders that breed in caves and in streams probably occurs, but on the other hand, assortative mating might limit it, thus allowing the conservation of local adaptations driving successful cave colonisation.

  7. Effects of red-backed salamanders on ecosystem functions.

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    Daniel J Hocking

    Full Text Available Ecosystems provide a vast array of services for human societies, but understanding how various organisms contribute to the functions that maintain these services remains an important ecological challenge. Predators can affect ecosystem functions through a combination of top-down trophic cascades and bottom-up effects on nutrient dynamics. As the most abundant vertebrate predator in many eastern US forests, woodland salamanders (Plethodon spp. likely affect ecosystems functions. We examined the effects of red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus on a variety of forest ecosystem functions using a combined approach of large-scale salamander removals (314-m(2 plots and small-scale enclosures (2 m(2 where we explicitly manipulated salamander density (0, 0.5, 1, 2, 4 m(-2. In these experiments, we measured the rates of litter and wood decomposition, potential nitrogen mineralization and nitrification rates, acorn germination, and foliar insect damage on red oak seedlings. Across both experimental venues, we found no significant effect of red-backed salamanders on any of the ecosystem functions. We also found no effect of salamanders on intraguild predator abundance (carabid beetles, centipedes, spiders. Our study adds to the already conflicting evidence on effects of red-backed salamander and other amphibians on terrestrial ecosystem functions. It appears likely that the impact of terrestrial amphibians on ecosystem functions is context dependent. Future research would benefit from explicitly examining terrestrial amphibian effects on ecosystem functions under a variety of environmental conditions and in different forest types.

  8. Effects of red-backed salamanders on ecosystem functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hocking, Daniel J; Babbitt, Kimberly J

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystems provide a vast array of services for human societies, but understanding how various organisms contribute to the functions that maintain these services remains an important ecological challenge. Predators can affect ecosystem functions through a combination of top-down trophic cascades and bottom-up effects on nutrient dynamics. As the most abundant vertebrate predator in many eastern US forests, woodland salamanders (Plethodon spp.) likely affect ecosystems functions. We examined the effects of red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) on a variety of forest ecosystem functions using a combined approach of large-scale salamander removals (314-m(2) plots) and small-scale enclosures (2 m(2)) where we explicitly manipulated salamander density (0, 0.5, 1, 2, 4 m(-2)). In these experiments, we measured the rates of litter and wood decomposition, potential nitrogen mineralization and nitrification rates, acorn germination, and foliar insect damage on red oak seedlings. Across both experimental venues, we found no significant effect of red-backed salamanders on any of the ecosystem functions. We also found no effect of salamanders on intraguild predator abundance (carabid beetles, centipedes, spiders). Our study adds to the already conflicting evidence on effects of red-backed salamander and other amphibians on terrestrial ecosystem functions. It appears likely that the impact of terrestrial amphibians on ecosystem functions is context dependent. Future research would benefit from explicitly examining terrestrial amphibian effects on ecosystem functions under a variety of environmental conditions and in different forest types.

  9. Better than fish on land? Hearing across metamorphosis in salamanders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Christian Bech; Lauridsen, Henrik; Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob

    2015-01-01

    hearing in early tetrapods. Here, we combine imaging techniques with neurophysiological measurements to resolve how the change from aquatic larvae to terrestrial adult affects the ear morphology and sensory capabilities of salamanders. We show that air-induced pressure detection enhances underwater...... hearing sensitivity of salamanders at frequencies above 120 Hz, and that both terrestrial adults and fully aquatic juvenile salamanders can detect airborne sound. Collectively, these findings suggest that early atympanic tetrapods may have been pre-equipped to aerial hearing and are able to hear airborne...

  10. Ballistic tongue projection in a miniaturized salamander.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deban, Stephen M; Bloom, Segall V

    2018-05-20

    Miniaturization of body size is often accompanied by peculiarities in morphology that can have functional consequences. We examined the feeding behavior and morphology of the miniaturized plethodontid salamander Thorius, one of the smallest vertebrates, to determine if its performance and biomechanics differ from those of its larger relatives. High-speed imaging and dynamics analysis of feeding at a range of temperatures show that tongue projection in Thorius macdougalli is ballistic and achieves accelerations of up to 600 G with low thermal sensitivity, indicating that tongue projection is powered by an elastic-recoil mechanism. Preceding ballistic projection is an unusual preparatory phase of tongue protrusion, which, like tongue retraction, shows lower performance and higher thermal sensitivity that are indicative of movement being powered directly by muscle shortening. The variability of tongue-projection kinematics and dynamics is comparable to larger ballistic-tongued plethodontids and reveals that Thorius is capable of modulating its tongue movements in response to prey distance. Morphological examination revealed that T. macdougalli possesses a reduced number of myofibers in the tongue muscles, a large projector muscle mass relative to tongue mass, and an unusual folding of the tongue skeleton, compared with larger relatives. Nonetheless, T. macdougalli retains the elaborated collagen aponeuroses in the projector muscle that store elastic energy and a tongue skeleton that is free of direct myofiber insertion, two features that appear to be essential for ballistic tongue projection in salamanders. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Toxoplasma gondii in small neotropical wild felids

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    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.

  12. Effects of pH on embryo tolerance and adult behavior in the tiger salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whiteman, H H; Howard, R D; Whitten, K A [Purdue Univ., Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Biological Sciences

    1995-08-01

    Adult discrimination ability and embryo performance was examined under different pH conditions in the eastern tiger salamander. Individuals from three populations were collected in habitats that differed naturally in pH. Two pH treatments were used to determine adult pH discrimination ability, and eight pH treatments to evaluate embryo performance. Results suggested that the pH of the source-population habitat could influence breeding-habitat discrimination by adults. Decreasing pH produced similar patterns of lethal and sublethal effects on embryos from the three populations, with reduced performance at low pH. The pH at which 50% mortality occurs was estimated at 4.2, suggesting that tiger salamanders were relatively acid tolerant. The study suggested that adult behavior patterns could influence the success of population reintroductions to previously acidified areas. 78 refs., 2 tabs., 4 figs.

  13. Salamander chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans) in the United States—Developing research, monitoring, and management strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Muths, Erin L.; Katz, Rachel A.; Canessa, Stefano; Adams, Michael J.; Ballard, Jennifer R.; Berger, Lee; Briggs, Cheryl J.; Coleman, Jeremy; Gray, Matthew J.; Harris, M. Camille; Harris, Reid N.; Hossack, Blake R.; Huyvaert, Kathryn P.; Kolby, Jonathan E.; Lips, Karen R.; Lovich, Robert E.; McCallum, Hamish I.; Mendelson, Joseph R.; Nanjappa, Priya; Olson, Deanna H.; Powers, Jenny G.; Richgels, Katherine L. D.; Russell, Robin E.; Schmidt, Benedikt R.; Spitzen-van der Sluijs, Annemarieke; Watry, Mary Kay; Woodhams, Douglas C.; White, C. LeAnn

    2016-01-20

    The recently (2013) identified pathogenic chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal), poses a severe threat to the distribution and abundance of salamanders within the United States and Europe. Development of a response strategy for the potential, and likely, invasion of Bsal into the United States is crucial to protect global salamander biodiversity. A formal working group, led by Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Fort Collins Science Center, and Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, was held at the USGS Powell Center for Analysis and Synthesis in Fort Collins, Colorado, United States from June 23 to June 25, 2015, to identify crucial Bsal research and monitoring needs that could inform conservation and management strategies for salamanders in the United States. Key findings of the workshop included the following: (1) the introduction of Bsal into the United States is highly probable, if not inevitable, thus requiring development of immediate short-term and long-term intervention strategies to prevent Bsal establishment and biodiversity decline; (2) management actions targeted towards pathogen containment may be ineffective in reducing the long-term spread of Bsal throughout the United States; and (3) early detection of Bsal through surveillance at key amphibian import locations, among high-risk wild populations, and through analysis of archived samples is necessary for developing management responses. Top research priorities during the preinvasion stage included the following: (1) deployment of qualified diagnostic methods for Bsal and establishment of standardized laboratory practices, (2) assessment of susceptibility for amphibian hosts (including anurans), and (3) development and evaluation of short- and long-term pathogen intervention and management strategies. Several outcomes were achieved during the workshop, including development

  14. Evolution of coprophagy and nutrient absorption in a Cave Salamander

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daphne Soares

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The transition from carnivory to omnivory is poorly understood. The ability to feed at more than one trophic level theoretically increases an animal’s fitness in a novel environment. Because of the absence of light and photosynthesis, most subterranean ecosystems are characterized by very few trophic levels, such that food scarcity is a challenge in many subterranean habitats. One strategy against starvation is to expand diet breadth. Grotto Salamanders (Eurycea spelaea (Stejneger, 1892 are known to ingest bat guano deliberately, challenging the general understanding that salamanders are strictly carnivorous. Here we tested the hypothesis that grotto salamanders have broadened their diet related to cave adaptation and found that, although coprophagous behavior is present, salamanders are unable to acquire sufficient nutrition from bat guano alone. Our results suggest that the coprophagic behavior has emerged prior to physiological or gut biome adaptations.

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

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    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.

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans is the predominant chytrid fungus in Vietnamese salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laking, Alexandra E.; Ngo, Hai Ngoc; Pasmans, Frank; Martel, An; Nguyen, Tao Thien

    2017-01-01

    The amphibian chytrid fungi, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) and B. salamandrivorans (Bsal), pose a major threat to amphibian biodiversity. Recent evidence suggests Southeast Asia as a potential cradle for both fungi, which likely resulted in widespread host-pathogen co-existence. We sampled 583 salamanders from 8 species across Vietnam in 55 locations for Bsal and Bd, determined scaled mass index as a proxy for fitness and collected environmental data. Bsal was found within 14 of the 55 habitats (2 of which it was detected in 2013), in 5 salamandrid species, with a prevalence of 2.92%. The globalized pandemic lineage of Bd was found within one pond on one species with a prevalence of 0.69%. Combined with a complete lack of correlation between infection and individual body condition and absence of indication of associated disease, this suggests low level pathogen endemism and Bsal and Bd co-existence with Vietnamese salamandrid populations. Bsal was more widespread than Bd, and occurs at temperatures higher than tolerated by the type strain, suggesting a wider thermal niche than currently known. Therefore, this study provides support for the hypothesis that these chytrid fungi may be endemic to Asia and that species within this region may act as a disease reservoir. PMID:28287614

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-01-01

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

  20. Chloride equilibrium potential in salamander cones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryson Eric J

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background GABAergic inhibition and effects of intracellular chloride ions on calcium channel activity have been proposed to regulate neurotransmission from photoreceptors. To assess the impact of these and other chloride-dependent mechanisms on release from cones, the chloride equilibrium potential (ECl was determined in red-sensitive, large single cones from the tiger salamander retinal slice. Results Whole cell recordings were done using gramicidin perforated patch techniques to maintain endogenous Cl- levels. Membrane potentials were corrected for liquid junction potentials. Cone resting potentials were found to average -46 mV. To measure ECl, we applied long depolarizing steps to activate the calcium-activated chloride current (ICl(Ca and then determined the reversal potential for the current component that was inhibited by the Cl- channel blocker, niflumic acid. With this method, ECl was found to average -46 mV. In a complementary approach, we used a Cl-sensitive dye, MEQ, to measure the Cl- flux produced by depolarization with elevated concentrations of K+. The membrane potentials produced by the various high K+ solutions were measured in separate current clamp experiments. Consistent with electrophysiological experiments, MEQ fluorescence measurements indicated that ECl was below -36 mV. Conclusions The results of this study indicate that ECl is close to the dark resting potential. This will minimize the impact of chloride-dependent presynaptic mechanisms in cone terminals involving GABAa receptors, glutamate transporters and ICl(Ca.

  1. Ontogenetic evidence for the Paleozoic ancestry of salamanders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoch, Rainer R; Carroll, Robert L

    2003-01-01

    The phylogenetic positions of frogs, salamanders, and caecilians have been difficult to establish. Data matrices based primarily on Paleozoic taxa support a monophyletic origin of all Lissamphibia but have resulted in widely divergent hypotheses of the nature of their common ancestor. Analysis that concentrates on the character states of the stem taxa of the extant orders, in contrast, suggests a polyphyletic origin from divergent Paleozoic clades. Comparison of patterns of larval development in Paleozoic and modern amphibians provides a means to test previous phylogenies based primarily on adult characteristics. This proves to be highly informative in the case of the origin of salamanders. Putative ancestors of salamanders are recognized from the Permo-Carboniferous boundary of Germany on the basis of ontogenetic changes observed in fossil remains of larval growth series. The entire developmental sequence from hatching to metamorphosis is revealed in an assemblage of over 600 specimens from a single locality, all belonging to the genus Apateon. Apateon forms the most speciose genus of the neotenic temnospondyl family Branchiosauridae. The sequence of ossification of individual bones and the changing configuration of the skull closely parallel those observed in the development of primitive living salamanders. These fossils provide a model of how derived features of the salamander skull may have evolved in the context of feeding specializations that appeared in early larval stages of members of the Branchiosauridae. Larvae of Apateon share many unique derived characters with salamanders of the families Hynobiidae, Salamandridae, and Ambystomatidae, which have not been recognized in any other group of Paleozoic amphibians.

  2. Modelling cross-scale relationships between climate, hydrology, and individual animals: Generating scenarios for stream salamanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe eGirard

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Hybrid modelling provides a unique opportunity to study cross-scale relationships in environmental systems by linking together models of global, regional, landscape, and local-scale processes, yet the approach is rarely applied to address conservation and management questions. Here, we demonstrate how a hybrid modelling approach can be used to assess the effect of cross-scale interactions on the survival of the Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander (Desmognathus ochrophaeus in response to changes in temperature and water availability induced by climate change at the northern limits of its distribution. To do so, we combine regional climate modelling with a landscape-scale integrated surface-groundwater flow model and an individual-based model of stream salamanders. On average, climate scenarios depict a warmer and wetter environment for the 2050 horizon. The increase in average annual temperature and extended hydrological activity time series in the future, combined with a better synchronization with the salamanders’ reproduction period, result in a significant increase in the long-term population viability of the salamanders. This indicates that climate change may not necessarily limit the survivability of small, stream-dwelling animals in headwater basins located in cold and humid regions. This new knowledge suggests that habitat conservation initiatives for amphibians with large latitudinal distributions in Eastern North America should be prioritized at the northern limits of their ranges to facilitate species migration and persistence in the face of climate change. This example demonstrates how hybrid models can serve as powerful tools for informing management and conservation decisions.

  3. Transcriptomic analysis of endangered Chinese salamander: identification of immune, sex and reproduction-related genes and genetic markers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rongbo Che

    Full Text Available The Chinese salamander (Hynobius chinensis, an endangered amphibian species of salamander endemic to China, has attracted much attention because of its value of studying paleontology evolutionary history and decreasing population size. Despite increasing interest in the Hynobius chinensis genome, genomic resources for the species are still very limited. A comprehensive transcriptome of Hynobius chinensis, which will provide a resource for genome annotation, candidate genes identification and molecular marker development should be generated to supplement it.We performed a de novo assembly of Hynobius chinensis transcriptome by Illumina sequencing. A total of 148,510 nonredundant unigenes with an average length of approximately 580 bp were obtained. In all, 60,388 (40.66% unigenes showed homologous matches in at least one database and 33,537 (22.58% unigenes were annotated by all four databases. In total, 41,553 unigenes were categorized into 62 sub-categories by BLAST2GO search, and 19,468 transcripts were assigned to 140 KEGG pathways. A large number of unigenes involved in immune system, local adaptation, reproduction and sex determination were identified, as well as 31,982 simple sequence repeats (SSRs and 460,923 putative single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs.This dataset represents the first transcriptome analysis of the Chinese salamander (Hynobius chinensis, an endangered species, to be also the first time of hynobiidae. The transcriptome will provide valuable resource for further research in discovery of new genes, protection of population, adaptive evolution and survey of various pathways, as well as development of molecule markers in Chinese salamander; and reference information for closely related species.

  4. Extremely low prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in frog populations from neotropical dry forest of Costa Rica supports the existence of a climatic refuge from disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zumbado-Ulate, Héctor; Bolaños, Federico; Gutiérrez-Espeleta, Gustavo; Puschendorf, Robert

    2014-12-01

    Population declines and extinctions of numerous species of amphibians, especially stream-breeding frogs, have been linked to the emerging infectious disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. In Central America, most of the 34 species of the Craugastor punctariolus species group have disappeared in recent years in high- and low-elevation rainforests. Distribution models for B. dendrobatidis and the continuous presence of the extirpated stream-dwelling species, Craugastor ranoides, in the driest site of Costa Rica (Santa Elena Peninsula), suggest that environmental conditions might restrict the growth and development of B. dendrobatidis, existing as a refuge from chytridiomycosis-driven extinction. We conducted field surveys to detect and quantify the pathogen using Real-time PCR in samples from 15 species of frogs in two locations of tropical dry forest. In Santa Elena Peninsula, we swabbed 310 frogs, and only one sample of the species, C. ranoides, tested positive for B. dendrobatidis (prevalence dry and hot environments of tropical dry forest. This study supports the existence of climatic refuges from chytridiomycosis and highlights the importance of tropical dry forest conservation for amphibians in the face of epidemic disease.

  5. 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

  6. Habitat adaptation rather than genetic distance correlates with female preference in fire salamanders (Salamandra salamandra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weitere Markus

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although some mechanisms of habitat adaptation of conspecific populations have been recently elucidated, the evolution of female preference has rarely been addressed as a force driving habitat adaptation in natural settings. Habitat adaptation of fire salamanders (Salamandra salamandra, as found in Middle Europe (Germany, can be framed in an explicit phylogeographic framework that allows for the evolution of habitat adaptation between distinct populations to be traced. Typically, females of S. salamandra only deposit their larvae in small permanent streams. However, some populations of the western post-glacial recolonization lineage use small temporary ponds as larval habitats. Pond larvae display several habitat-specific adaptations that are absent in stream-adapted larvae. We conducted mate preference tests with females from three distinct German populations in order to determine the influence of habitat adaptation versus neutral genetic distance on female mate choice. Two populations that we tested belong to the western post-glacial recolonization group, but are adapted to either stream or pond habitats. The third population is adapted to streams but represents the eastern recolonization lineage. Results Despite large genetic distances with FST values around 0.5, the stream-adapted females preferred males from the same habitat type regardless of genetic distance. Conversely, pond-adapted females did not prefer males from their own population when compared to stream-adapted individuals of either lineage. Conclusion A comparative analysis of our data showed that habitat adaptation rather than neutral genetic distance correlates with female preference in these salamanders, and that habitat-dependent female preference of a specific pond-reproducing population may have been lost during adaptation to the novel environmental conditions of ponds.

  7. Reproductive biology of the Del Norte salamander (Plethodon elongatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clara A. Wheeler; Hartwell H. Welsh Jr.; Lisa M. Ollivier

    2013-01-01

    We examined seasonal reproductive patterns of the Del Norte Salamander, Plethodon elongatus, in mixed conifer and hardwood forests of northwestern California and southwestern Oregon. Seasonal size differences in reproductive structures suggested that maximum spermatogenic activity occurred during the late summer, with spermatozoa transfer to the...

  8. Design tradeoffs in long-term research for stream salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Adrianne B,; Grant, Evan H. Campbell

    2017-01-01

    Long-term research programs can benefit from early and periodic evaluation of their ability to meet stated objectives. In particular, consideration of the spatial allocation of effort is key. We sampled 4 species of stream salamanders intensively for 2 years (2010–2011) in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, Maryland, USA to evaluate alternative distributions of sampling locations within stream networks, and then evaluated via simulation the ability of multiple survey designs to detect declines in occupancy and to estimate dynamic parameters (colonization, extinction) over 5 years for 2 species. We expected that fine-scale microhabitat variables (e.g., cobble, detritus) would be the strongest determinants of occupancy for each of the 4 species; however, we found greater support for all species for models including variables describing position within the stream network, stream size, or stream microhabitat. A monitoring design focused on headwater sections had greater power to detect changes in occupancy and the dynamic parameters in each of 3 scenarios for the dusky salamander (Desmognathus fuscus) and red salamander (Pseudotriton ruber). Results for transect length were more variable, but across all species and scenarios, 25-m transects are most suitable as a balance between maximizing detection probability and describing colonization and extinction. These results inform sampling design and provide a general framework for setting appropriate goals, effort, and duration in the initial planning stages of research programs on stream salamanders in the eastern United States.

  9. Salamander blue-sensitive cones lost during metamorphosis.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chen, Y.; Znoiko, S.; Grip, W.J. de; Crouch, R.K.; Ma, J.X.

    2008-01-01

    The tiger salamander lives in shallow water with bright light in the aquatic phase, and in dim tunnels or caves in the terrestrial phase. In the aquatic phase, there are five types of photoreceptors--two types of rods and three types of cones. Our previous studies showed that the green rods and

  10. A Salamander Tale: Effective Exhibits and Attitude Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rollins, Jeffrey; Watson, Sunnie Lee

    2017-01-01

    Little information exists regarding intention behind the design and development of Extension outreach and educational exhibits. An evaluation of response to the exhibit "A Salamander Tale" indicates that the methods used to develop the exhibit resulted in an effective way to present information to an adult audience. Survey questions were…

  11. in Chinese giant salamander ( Andrias davidianus , Blanchard, 1871)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A disease in farmed Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus) was a common event, being an economically important threat for Chinese farms. Based on the clinical signs, epizootiology and pathogens belonging to the genus, Ranavirus was suspected as the possible etiology. Although in a cultured Chinese giant ...

  12. Overview of the status of the Cheat Mountain salamander

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas K. Pauley

    2010-01-01

    Plethodon nettingi, the Cheat Mountain salamander, is endemic to the high elevations of the Allegheny Mountains in eastern West Virginia. In 1938, N.B. Green named the species from specimens collected at Barton Knob, Randolph County, in honor of his friend and colleague Graham Netting.

  13. 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

  14. Computer-assisted photo identification outperforms visible implant elastomers in an endangered salamander, Eurycea tonkawae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan F Bendik

    Full Text Available Despite recognition that nearly one-third of the 6300 amphibian species are threatened with extinction, our understanding of the general ecology and population status of many amphibians is relatively poor. A widely-used method for monitoring amphibians involves injecting captured individuals with unique combinations of colored visible implant elastomer (VIE. We compared VIE identification to a less-invasive method - computer-assisted photographic identification (photoID - in endangered Jollyville Plateau salamanders (Eurycea tonkawae, a species with a known range limited to eight stream drainages in central Texas. We based photoID on the unique pigmentation patterns on the dorsal head region of 1215 individual salamanders using identification software Wild-ID. We compared the performance of photoID methods to VIEs using both 'high-quality' and 'low-quality' images, which were taken using two different camera types and technologies. For high-quality images, the photoID method had a false rejection rate of 0.76% compared to 1.90% for VIEs. Using a comparable dataset of lower-quality images, the false rejection rate was much higher (15.9%. Photo matching scores were negatively correlated with time between captures, suggesting that evolving natural marks could increase misidentification rates in longer term capture-recapture studies. Our study demonstrates the utility of large-scale capture-recapture using photo identification methods for Eurycea and other species with stable natural marks that can be reliably photographed.

  15. Identification of Mutant Genes and Introgressed Tiger Salamander DNA in the Laboratory Axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodcock, M Ryan; Vaughn-Wolfe, Jennifer; Elias, Alexandra; Kump, D Kevin; Kendall, Katharina Denise; Timoshevskaya, Nataliya; Timoshevskiy, Vladimir; Perry, Dustin W; Smith, Jeramiah J; Spiewak, Jessica E; Parichy, David M; Voss, S Randal

    2017-01-31

    The molecular genetic toolkit of the Mexican axolotl, a classic model organism, has matured to the point where it is now possible to identify genes for mutant phenotypes. We used a positional cloning-candidate gene approach to identify molecular bases for two historic axolotl pigment phenotypes: white and albino. White (d/d) mutants have defects in pigment cell morphogenesis and differentiation, whereas albino (a/a) mutants lack melanin. We identified in white mutants a transcriptional defect in endothelin 3 (edn3), encoding a peptide factor that promotes pigment cell migration and differentiation in other vertebrates. Transgenic restoration of Edn3 expression rescued the homozygous white mutant phenotype. We mapped the albino locus to tyrosinase (tyr) and identified polymorphisms shared between the albino allele (tyr a ) and tyr alleles in a Minnesota population of tiger salamanders from which the albino trait was introgressed. tyr a has a 142 bp deletion and similar engineered alleles recapitulated the albino phenotype. Finally, we show that historical introgression of tyr a significantly altered genomic composition of the laboratory axolotl, yielding a distinct, hybrid strain of ambystomatid salamander. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of identifying genes for traits in the laboratory Mexican axolotl.

  16. Seasonality and microhabitat selection in a forest-dwelling salamander

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basile, Marco; Romano, Antonio; Costa, Andrea; Posillico, Mario; Scinti Roger, Daniele; Crisci, Aldo; Raimondi, Ranieri; Altea, Tiziana; Garfì, Vittorio; Santopuoli, Giovanni; Marchetti, Marco; Salvidio, Sebastiano; De Cinti, Bruno; Matteucci, Giorgio

    2017-10-01

    Many small terrestrial vertebrates exhibit limited spatial movement and are considerably exposed to changes in local environmental variables. Among such vertebrates, amphibians at present experience a dramatic decline due to their limited resilience to environmental change. Since the local survival and abundance of amphibians is intrinsically related to the availability of shelters, conservation plans need to take microhabitat requirements into account. In order to gain insight into the terrestrial ecology of the spectacled salamander Salamandrina perspicillata and to identify appropriate forest management strategies, we investigated the salamander's seasonal variability in habitat use of trees as shelters in relation to tree features (size, buttresses, basal holes) and environmental variables in a beech forest in Italy. We used the occupancy approach to assess tree suitability on a non-conventional spatial scale. Our approach provides fine-grained parameters of microhabitat suitability and elucidates many aspects of the salamander's terrestrial ecology . Occupancy changed with the annual life cycle and was higher in autumn than in spring, when females were found closer to the stream in the study area. Salamanders showed a seasonal pattern regarding the trees they occupied and a clear preference for trees with a larger diameter and more burrows. With respect to forest management, we suggest maintaining a suitable number of trees with a trunk diameter exceeding 30 cm. A practice of selective logging along the banks of streams could help maintain an adequate quantity of the appropriate microhabitat. Furthermore, in areas with a presence of salamanders, a good forest management plan requires leaving an adequate buffer zone around streams, which should be wider in autumn than in spring.

  17. Can the eastern red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus) persist in an acidified landscape?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bondi, Cheryl A; Beier, Colin M.; Ducey, Peter K; Lawrence, Gregory B.; Bailey, Scott W.

    2016-01-01

    Hardwood forests of eastern North America have experienced decades of acidic deposition, leading to soil acidification where base cation supply was insufficient to neutralize acid inputs. Negative impacts of soil acidity on amphibians include disrupted embryonic development, lower growth rates, and habitat loss. However, some amphibians exhibit intraspecific variation in acid tolerance, suggesting the potential for local adaptation in areas where soils are naturally acidic. The eastern red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus) is a highly abundant top predator of the northern hardwood forest floor. Early research found that P. cinereus was sensitive to acidic soils, avoiding substrates with pH habitats. However, recent studies have documented P. cinereus populations in lower pH conditions than previously observed, suggesting some populations may persist in acidic conditions. Here, we evaluated relationships between organic horizon soil pH and P. cinereus abundance, adult health (body size and condition), and microhabitat selection, based on surveys of 34 hardwood forests in northeastern United States that encompass a regional soil pH gradient. We found no associations between soil pH and P. cinereus abundance or health, and observed that this salamander used substrates with pH similar to that available, suggesting that pH does not mediate their fine-scale distributions. The strongest negative predictor of P. cinereus abundance was the presence of dusky salamanders (Desmognathus spp.), which were most abundant in the western Adirondacks. Our results indicate that P. cinereus occupies a wider range of soil pH than has been previously thought, which has implications for their functional role in forest food webs and nutrient cycles in acid-impaired ecosystems. Tolerance of P. cinereus for more acidic habitats, including anthropogenically acidified forests, may be due to local adaptation in reproductively isolated populations and/or generalist

  18. Identification of conservation units of the hynobiid salamander Pachyhynobius shangchengensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, L-N; Zhao, Y-Y; Wu, X-M; Zhang, H-F; Li, X-C

    2015-08-19

    The evolutionary significant units (ESUs) of the salamander Pachyhynobius shangchengensis (Hynobiidae) in the Dabieshan mountains, southeastern China, were identified based on mitochondrial DNA data. We used methods for detecting cryptic species, such as the minimum spanning tree, the automatic barcode gap discovery, and the generalized mixed Yule-coalescent model; geographical partitioning was also used to identify the ESUs. A total of four ESUs were identified.

  19. Differentiated egg size of the cannibalistic salamander Hynobius retardatus

    OpenAIRE

    Michimae, Hirofumi

    2007-01-01

    Larvae of the salamander, Hynobius retardatus, are carnivorous, and even though there are two morphs, a typical morph and a broad-headed or “cannibal” morph, both are cannibalistic. They also sometimes eat other large prey, for example larvae of the frog, Rana pirica. In natural habitats, use of both conspecific and R. pirica larvae as food may contribute more strongly to high survival and substantially to fitness when larval densities are higher, because early-stage H. retardatus larvae some...

  20. Comparative and developmental patterns of amphibious auditory function in salamanders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeyl, Jeffrey N; Johnston, Carol E

    2016-12-01

    Early amphibious tetrapods may have detected aquatic sound pressure using sound-induced lung vibrations, but their lack of tympanic middle ears would have restricted aerial sensitivity. Sharing these characteristics, salamanders could be models for the carryover of auditory function across an aquatic-terrestrial boundary without tympanic middle ears. We measured amphibious auditory evoked potential audiograms in five phylogenetically and ecologically distinct salamanders (Amphiuma means, Notophthalmus viridescens, Ambystoma talpoideum, Eurycea spp., and Plethodon glutinosus) and tested whether metamorphosis and terrestrial niche were linked to aerial sensitivity. Threshold differences between media varied between species. A. means' relative aerial sensitivity was greatest at 100 Hz and decreased with increasing frequency. In contrast, all other salamanders retained greater sensitivity up to 500 Hz, and in A. talpoideum and Eurycea, relative sensitivity at 500 Hz was higher than at 100 Hz. Aerial thresholds of terrestrial P. glutinosus above 200 Hz were similar to A. talpoideum and Eurycea, but lower than N. viridescens and A. means. Metamorphosis did not affect aerial sensitivity in N. viridescens or A. talpoideum. These results fail to support a hypothesis of terrestrial hearing specialization across ontogeny or phylogeny. We discuss methodological limitations to our amphibious comparisons and factors affecting variation in amphibious performance.

  1. Effects of microhabitat and land use on stream salamander abundance in the southwest Virginia coalfields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeten, Sara E.; Ford, W. Mark

    2015-01-01

    Large-scale land uses such as residential wastewater discharge and coal mining practices, particularly surface coal extraction and associated valley fills, are of particular ecological concern in central Appalachia. Identification and quantification of both alterations across scales are a necessary first-step to mitigate negative consequences to biota. In central Appalachian headwater streams absent of fish, salamanders are the dominant, most abundant vertebrate predator providing a significant intermediate trophic role. Stream salamander species are considered to be sensitive to aquatic stressors and environmental alterations, and past research has shown linkages among microhabitat parameters, large-scale land use such as urbanization and logging with salamander abundances. However, little is known about these linkages in the coalfields of central Appalachia. In the summer of 2013, we visited 70 sites (sampled three times each) in the southwest Virginia coalfields to survey salamanders and quantify stream and riparian microhabitat parameters. Using an information-theoretic framework we compared the effects of microhabitat and large-scale land use on salamander abundances. Our findings indicate that dusky salamander (Desmognathus spp.) abundances are more correlated to microhabitat parameters such as canopy cover than to subwatershed land uses. Brook salamander (Eurycea spp.) abundances show strong negative associations to the suspended sediments and stream substrate embeddedness. Neither Desmognathus spp. nor Eurycea spp. abundances were influenced by water conductivity. These suggest protection or restoration of riparian habitats and erosion control is an important conservation component for maintaining stream salamanders in the mined landscapes of central Appalachia.

  2. Effects of mercury on behavior and performance of northern two-lined salamanders (Eurycea bislineata)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burke, John N.; Bergeron, Christine M.; Todd, Brian D.; Hopkins, William A.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) causes a range of deleterious effects in wildlife, but little is known about its effects on amphibians. Our objective was to determine whether Hg affects performance and behavior in two-lined salamanders (Eurycea bislineata). We collected salamanders from Hg-contaminated and reference sites and assessed speed, responsiveness, and prey capture ability. Mercury concentrations were >17x higher in salamanders from the contaminated sites and were among the highest documented in amphibians. In the first, but not in the second, locomotion trial, we found a significant effect of Hg on speed and responsiveness. In the prey capture experiment, reference salamanders ate approximately twice as many prey items as the contaminated salamanders. Together, our results suggest that sublethal Hg concentrations may negatively affect salamanders by reducing their ability to successfully execute tasks critical to survival. Future work is warranted to determine whether Hg has other sublethal effects on salamanders and whether other amphibians are similarly affected. - Mercury contamination may alter behavior and performance in the northern two-lined salamander (Eurycea bislineata).

  3. Effects of mercury on behavior and performance of northern two-lined salamanders (Eurycea bislineata)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burke, John N; Bergeron, Christine M; Todd, Brian D [Wildlife Ecotoxicology and Physiological Ecology Program, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 100 Cheatham Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States); Hopkins, William A., E-mail: hopkinsw@vt.ed [Wildlife Ecotoxicology and Physiological Ecology Program, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 100 Cheatham Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States)

    2010-12-15

    Mercury (Hg) causes a range of deleterious effects in wildlife, but little is known about its effects on amphibians. Our objective was to determine whether Hg affects performance and behavior in two-lined salamanders (Eurycea bislineata). We collected salamanders from Hg-contaminated and reference sites and assessed speed, responsiveness, and prey capture ability. Mercury concentrations were >17x higher in salamanders from the contaminated sites and were among the highest documented in amphibians. In the first, but not in the second, locomotion trial, we found a significant effect of Hg on speed and responsiveness. In the prey capture experiment, reference salamanders ate approximately twice as many prey items as the contaminated salamanders. Together, our results suggest that sublethal Hg concentrations may negatively affect salamanders by reducing their ability to successfully execute tasks critical to survival. Future work is warranted to determine whether Hg has other sublethal effects on salamanders and whether other amphibians are similarly affected. - Mercury contamination may alter behavior and performance in the northern two-lined salamander (Eurycea bislineata).

  4. Using a GIS model to assess terrestrial salamander response to alternative forest management plans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eric J. Gustafson; Nathan L. Murphy; Thomas R. Crow

    2001-01-01

    A GIS model predicting the spatial distribution of terrestrial salamander abundance based on topography and forest age was developed using parameters derived from the literature. The model was tested by sampling salamander abundance across the full range of site conditions used in the model. A regression of the predictions of our GIS model against these sample data...

  5. Habitat relationships of eastern red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) in Appalachian agroforestry and grazing systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breanna L. Riedel; Kevin R. Russell; W. Mark Ford; Katherine P. O' Neill; Harry W. Godwin

    2008-01-01

    Woodland salamander responses to either traditional grazing or silvopasture systems are virtually unknown. An information-theoretic modelling approach was used to evaluate responses of red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) to silvopasture and meadow conversions in southern West Virginia. Searches of area-constrained plots and artificial...

  6. Effects of edge contrast on redback salamander distribution in even-aged northern hardwoods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard M. DeGraaf; Mariko. Yamasaki

    2002-01-01

    Terrestrial salamanders are sensitive to forest disturbance associated with even-aged management. We studied the distribution of redback salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) for 4 yr at edges between even-aged northern hardwood stands along three replicate transects in each of three edge contrast types: regeneration/mature, sapling/mature, and...

  7. Variable infection of stream salamanders in the southern Appalachians by the trematode Metagonimoides oregonensis (family: Heterophyidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennie A. Wyderko; Ernest F. Benfield; John C. Maerz; Kristen C. Cecala; Lisa K. Belden

    2015-01-01

    Many factors contribute to parasites varying in host specificity and distribution among potential hosts. Metagonimoides oregonensis is a digenetic trematode that uses stream-dwelling plethodontid salamanders as second intermediate hosts in the Eastern US. We completed a field survey to identify which stream salamander species, at a regional level, are most...

  8. 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

  9. Temporal response of the tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum to 3,000 years of climatic variation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Long Webb

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Amphibians are sensitive indicators of environmental conditions and show measurable responses, such as changes in phenology, abundance and range limits to local changes in precipitation and temperature regimes. Amphibians offer unique opportunities to study the important ecological and evolutionary implications of responses in life history characteristics to climatic change. We analyzed a late-Holocene fossil record of the Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum for evidence of population-level changes in body size and paedomorphosis to climatic change over the last 3000 years. Results We found a significant difference in body size index between paedomorphic and metamorphic individuals during the time interval dominated by the Medieval Warm Period. There is a consistent ratio of paedomorphic to metamorphic specimens through the entire 3000 years, demonstrating that not all life history characteristics of the population were significantly altered by changes in climate on this timescale. Conclusion The fossil record of Ambystoma tigrinum we used spans an ecologically relevant timescale appropriate for understanding population and community response to projected climatic change. The population-level responses we documented are concordant with expectations based on modern environmental studies, and yield insight into population-level patterns across hundreds of generations, especially the independence of different life history characteristics. These conclusions lead us to offer general predictions about the future response of this species based on likely scenarios of climatic warming in the Rocky Mountain region.

  10. Extinction debt as a driver of amphibian declines: An example with imperiled flatwoods salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semiltsch, Raymond D; Walls, Susan; Barichivich, William J.; O'Donnell, Katherine

    2017-01-01

    A comprehensive view of population declines and their underlying causes is necessary to reverse species loss. Historically, in many cases, a narrow view may have allowed species declines to continue, virtually undetected, for long periods of time (perhaps even decades). We suggest that extinction debt is likely responsible for numerous (perhaps most) amphibian declines and that this perspective should be incorporated into the structure of amphibian research and management. Extinction debt, originally proposed to explain changes in species richness following environmental disturbance, also may refer to the proportion of populations of an individual species that is expected to eventually be lost because of habitat change. A conservation framework to address extinction debt focuses research on threats at the individual, population, and metapopulation levels. This approach will help enhance, restore, and protect specific processes and habitats at the proper scale by directing management to the most vulnerable level and stage of a species. We illustrate this approach using Flatwoods Salamanders, Ambystoma cingulatumand Ambystoma bishopi, which occurred historically throughout the Coastal Plain of the southeastern United States but have experienced a greater than 85% loss of populations in recent years. Reversal of these losses is possible only if conservation and recovery efforts encompass individual, population, and metapopulation levels. We illustrate our framework by outlining actions that could be taken at each of these levels to help guide conservation and management of amphibians with complex life cycles and provide options for how to prioritize conservation actions in the face of logistical and budgetary shortfalls.

  11. Deep divergences and extensive phylogeographic structure in a clade of lowland tropical salamanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rovito Sean M

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The complex geological history of Mesoamerica provides the opportunity to study the impact of multiple biogeographic barriers on population differentiation. We examine phylogeographic patterns in a clade of lowland salamanders (Bolitoglossa subgenus Nanotriton using two mitochondrial genes and one nuclear gene. We use several phylogeographic analyses to infer the history of this clade and test hypotheses regarding the geographic origin of species and location of genetic breaks within species. We compare our results to those for other taxa to determine if historical events impacted different species in a similar manner. Results Deep genetic divergence between species indicates that they are relatively old, and two of the three widespread species show strong phylogeographic structure. Comparison of mtDNA and nuclear gene trees shows no evidence of hybridization or introgression between species. Isolated populations of Bolitoglossa rufescens from Los Tuxtlas region constitute a separate lineage based on molecular data and morphology, and divergence between Los Tuxtlas and other areas appears to predate the arrival of B. rufescens in other areas west of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The Isthmus appears responsible for Pliocene vicariance within B. rufescens, as has been shown for other taxa. The Motagua-Polochic fault system does not appear to have caused population vicariance, unlike in other systems. Conclusions Species of Nanotriton have responded to some major geological events in the same manner as other taxa, particularly in the case of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The deep divergence of the Los Tuxtlas populations of B. rufescens from other populations highlights the contribution of this volcanic system to patterns of regional endemism, and morphological differences observed in the Los Tuxtlas populations suggests that they may represent an undescribed species of Bolitoglossa. The absence of phylogeographic structure in B

  12. Diet of larval Ambystoma rivulare (Caudata: Ambystomatidae, a threatened salamander from the Volcán Nevado de Toluca, Mexico

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    Julio A. Lemos-Espinal

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Several species of salamander in the genus Ambystoma occur in the mountains surrounding Mexico City and are considered at risk of extinction. However, little is known about their ecology and natural history. The Toluca Stream Siredon (Ambystoma rivulare is classified as “Data Deficient” by the IUCN, and considered “Threatened” under Mexican law. From October 2013 to September 2014, we examined the diet of larval A. rivulare from a stream on the Volcán Nevado de Toluca in Mexico to provide insight into the suitability of the habitat to support this population of salamanders. Ostracods accounted for approximately 90% of all prey items consumed by larval A. rivulare. The number of ostracods found in stomachs increased with individual body size, but the proportion of ostracods in stomachs did not vary with body size. Nematodes were observed in approximately one third of the stomachs we examined. The diversity of prey in the diet of A. rivulare in the stream we studied is low and dominated by a single prey taxon, ostracods. Our results suggest that if environmental conditions in the stream change such that ostracods are negatively affected then the long-term persistence of this population of A. rivulare might be in jeopardy.

  13. Taxonomy Icon Data: Japanese giant salamander [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available Japanese giant salamander Andrias japonicus Chordata/Vertebrata/Amphibia Andrias_japonicus_L.png Andrias_jap...onicus_NL.png Andrias_japonicus_S.png Andrias_japonicus_NS.png http://biosciencedbc....jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Andrias+japonicus&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Andrias+jap...onicus&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Andrias+japonicus...&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Andrias+japonicus&t=NS ...

  14. Environmental influences on egg and clutch sizes in lentic- and lotic-breeding salamanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon M. Davenport

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent research indicates that social and environmental factors influence egg and clutch sizes in amphibians. However, most of this work is based on the reproductively diverse order Anura (frogs and toads, whereas less research has been conducted on Caudata (salamanders and Gymnophiona (caecilians. Researchers have suggested that a relationship exists between social and environmental factors and egg and clutch sizes in salamanders, but studies controlling for phylogenetic context are lacking. We could not identify a sufficient number of comparisons for social influences on egg and clutch sizes; therefore, we focused on environmental influences for this study. Data on egg size, clutch size, environmental factors, and phylogenies for salamanders were assembled from the scientific literature. We used independent, pair-wise comparisons to investigate the association of larval salamander habitat and egg size and the association of larval salamander habitat with clutch sizes within a phylogenetic framework. There is a significant association between larval habitat and egg size; specifically, stream-breeding species produce larger eggs. There is no significant association between larval habitat and clutchsize. Our study confirms earlier reports that salamander egg size is associated with larval environments, but is the first to use phylogenetically independent contrasts to account for the lack of phylogenetic independence of the traits measured (egg size and clutch size associated with many of the diverse lineages. Our study shows that environmental selection pressure can be quite strong on one aspect of salamander reproduction—egg size.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. Road deicing salt irreversibly disrupts osmoregulation of salamander egg clutches

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karraker, Nancy E.; Gibbs, James P.

    2011-01-01

    It has been postulated that road deicing salts are sufficiently diluted by spring rains to ameliorate any physiological impacts to amphibians breeding in wetlands near roads. We tested this conjecture by exposing clutches of the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) to three chloride concentrations (1 mg/L, 145 mg/L, 945 mg/L) for nine days, then transferred clutches to control water for nine days, and measured change in mass at three-day intervals. We measured mass change because water uptake by clutches reduces risks to embryos associated with freezing, predation, and disease. Clutches in controls sequestered water asymptotically. Those in the moderate concentrations lost 18% mass initially and regained 14% after transfer to control water. Clutches in high concentration lost 33% mass and then lost an additional 8% after transfer. Our results suggest that spring rains do not ameliorate the effects of deicing salts in wetlands with extremely high chloride concentrations. - Road deicing salts irreversibly disrupts osmoregulation of salamander egg clutches.

  18. Road deicing salt irreversibly disrupts osmoregulation of salamander egg clutches

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karraker, Nancy E., E-mail: karraker@hku.hk [Department of Environmental and Forest Biology, State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY 13210 (United States); Gibbs, James P [Department of Environmental and Forest Biology, State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY 13210 (United States)

    2011-03-15

    It has been postulated that road deicing salts are sufficiently diluted by spring rains to ameliorate any physiological impacts to amphibians breeding in wetlands near roads. We tested this conjecture by exposing clutches of the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) to three chloride concentrations (1 mg/L, 145 mg/L, 945 mg/L) for nine days, then transferred clutches to control water for nine days, and measured change in mass at three-day intervals. We measured mass change because water uptake by clutches reduces risks to embryos associated with freezing, predation, and disease. Clutches in controls sequestered water asymptotically. Those in the moderate concentrations lost 18% mass initially and regained 14% after transfer to control water. Clutches in high concentration lost 33% mass and then lost an additional 8% after transfer. Our results suggest that spring rains do not ameliorate the effects of deicing salts in wetlands with extremely high chloride concentrations. - Road deicing salts irreversibly disrupts osmoregulation of salamander egg clutches.

  19. Telocytes in pancreas of the Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hui; Yu, Pengcheng; Zhong, Shengwei; Ge, Tingting; Peng, Shasha; Guo, Xiaoquan; Zhou, Zuohong

    2016-11-01

    Telocytes (TCs), novel interstitial cells, have been identified in various organs of many mammals. However, information about TCs of lower animals remains rare. Herein, pancreatic TCs of the Chinese giant salamanders (Andrias davidianus) were identified by CD34 immunohistochemistry (IHC) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The IHC micrographs revealed CD34 + TCs with long telopodes (Tps) that were located in the interstitium of the pancreas. CD34 + TCs/Tps were frequently observed between exocrine acinar cells and were close to blood vessels. The TEM micrographs also showed the existence of TCs in the interstitium of the pancreas. TCs had distinctive ultrastructural features, such as one to three very long and thin Tps with podoms and podomers, caveolae, dichotomous branching, neighbouring exosomes and vesicles. The Tps and exosomes were found in close proximity to exocrine acinar cells and α cells. It is suggested that TCs may play a role in the regeneration of acinar cells and α cells. In conclusion, our results demonstrated the presence of TCs in the pancreas of the Chinese giant salamander. This finding will assist us in a better understanding of TCs functions in the amphibian pancreas. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Foundation for Cellular and Molecular Medicine.

  20. Slow Lives in the Fast Landscape: Conservation and Management of Plethodontid Salamanders in Production Forests of the United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica A. Homyack

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Intensively-managed forest (IMF ecosystems support environmental processes, retain biodiversity and reduce pressure to extract wood products from other forests, but may affect species, such as plethodontid salamanders, that are associated with closed canopies and possess limited vagility. We describe: (1 critical aspects of IMF ecosystems; (2 effectiveness of plethodontid salamanders as barometers of forest change; (3 two case studies of relationships between salamanders and coarse woody debris (CWD; and (4 research needs for effective management of salamanders in IMF ecosystems. Although plethodontid salamanders are sensitive to microclimate changes, their role as ecological indicators rarely have been evaluated quantitatively. Our case studies of CWD and salamanders in western and eastern forests demonstrated effects of species, region and spatial scale on the existence and strength of relationships between plethodontid species and a “critical” microhabitat variable. Oregon slender salamanders (Batrachoseps wrighti were more strongly associated with abundance of CWD in managed second growth forests than ensatina salamanders (Ensatina eschscholtzii. Similarly, CWD was not an important predictor of abundance of Appalachian salamanders in managed hardwood forest. Gaining knowledge of salamanders in IMF ecosystems is critical to reconciling ecological and economic objectives of intensive forest management, but faces challenges in design and implementation.

  1. Nutritional and medicinal characteristics of Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus for applications in healthcare industry by artificial cultivation: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong He

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Andrias davidianus, i. e. Chinese giant salamander (CGS, is one of the largest and oldest amphibians existing in the world and is also one of the valuable biological resources of China. Wild CGS has been threatened with extinction in the past decades due to over capturing, deterioration of natural environment, the slow breeding and growth of the wild species in nature. However, in the past twenty years, with the breakthrough and progress of artificial breeding technology by artificial insemination, the number of artificially cultivated CGS has increased rapidly. Artificially cultivated CGS can either be released to the CGS living environment to increase the population in nature or legally applied in food and medicinal industry as a feedstock due to the unique nutritional and medicinal values of CGS as recorded historically. In this review, the nutritional components, bioactive components and medicinal activities of the artificially cultivated CGS will be summarized. The mucus, skin, meat and bone of CGS contain many different bioactive substances thereby having various medicinal activities including anti-aging, anti-fatigue, anti-tumor, therapy of burn and anti-infection and other physiological functions. This paper will further discuss the potential applications of the artificially cultivated CGS in healthcare industry and prospects of future technological development. Keywords: Andrias davidianus, Artificial breeding, Chinese giant salamander, Functional foods, Medicinal activity, Natural resource protection, Nutrition

  2. Biology of tiny animals: three new species of minute salamanders (Plethodontidae: Thorius from Oaxaca, Mexico

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    Gabriela Parra-Olea

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available We describe three new species of minute salamanders, genus Thorius, from the Sierra Madre del Sur of Oaxaca, Mexico. Until now only a single species, T. minutissimus, has been reported from this region, although molecular data have long shown extensive genetic differentiation among geographically disjunct populations. Adult Thorius pinicola sp. nov., T. longicaudus sp. nov., and T. tlaxiacus sp. nov. are larger than T. minutissimus and possess elliptical rather than oval nostrils; T. pinicola and T. longicaudus also have longer tails. All three new species occur west of the range of T. minutissimus, which has the easternmost distribution of any member of the genus. The new species are distinguished from each other and from other named Thorius in Oaxaca by a combination of adult body size, external morphology and osteology, and by protein characters (allozymes and differences in DNA sequences. In addition, we redescribe T. minutissimus and a related species, T. narisovalis, to further clarify the taxonomic status of Oaxacan populations and to facilitate future studies of the remaining genetically differentiated Thorius that cannot be satisfactorily assigned to any named species. Populations of all five species considered here appear to have declined dramatically over the last one or two decades and live specimens are difficult to find in nature. Thorius may be the most endangered genus of amphibians in the world. All species may go extinct before the end of this century.

  3. Male pheromone protein components activate female vomeronasal neurons in the salamander Plethodon shermani

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    Feldhoff Pamela W

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The mental gland pheromone of male Plethodon salamanders contains two main protein components: a 22 kDa protein named Plethodon Receptivity Factor (PRF and a 7 kDa protein named Plethodon Modulating Factor (PMF, respectively. Each protein component individually has opposing effects on female courtship behavior, with PRF shortening and PMF lengthening courtship. In this study, we test the hypothesis that PRF or PMF individually activate vomeronasal neurons. The agmatine-uptake technique was used to visualize chemosensory neurons that were activated by each protein component individually. Results Vomeronasal neurons exposed to agmatine in saline did not demonstrate significant labeling. However, a population of vomeronasal neurons was labeled following exposure to either PRF or PMF. When expressed as a percent of control level labeled cells, PRF labeled more neurons than did PMF. These percentages for PRF and PMF, added together, parallel the percentage of labeled vomeronasal neurons when females are exposed to the whole pheromone. Conclusion This study suggests that two specific populations of female vomeronasal neurons are responsible for responding to each of the two components of the male pheromone mixture. These two neural populations, therefore, could express different receptors which, in turn, transmit different information to the brain, thus accounting for the different female behavior elicited by each pheromone component.

  4. Stoichiometry of excreta and excretion rates of a stream-dwelling plethodontid salamander

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Stoichiometry of excreta and excretion rates of a stream-dwelling plethodontid salamander in Cincinnati, OH, USA. This dataset is associated with the following...

  5. An annotated review of the Salamander types described in the Fauna Japonica

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoogmoed, M.S.

    1978-01-01

    The whereabouts of the salamander types described by Temminck & Schlegel in the Fauna Japonica (1838) are discussed and lectotypes are selected from the syntypes for the following nominal species : Salamandra naevia Temminck & Schlegel, S. unguiculata Temminck & Schlegel, S. subcristata Temminck &

  6. Egg predators of an endemic Italian salamander, Salamandrina perspicillata (Savi, 1821

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    Antonio Romano

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available We report new aquatic predators feeding on Northern spectacled salamander eggs, Salamandrina perspicillata, an endemic Italian species. Eggs were preyed upon by the leech, Trocheta bykowskii, and the trichopteran larvae of Potamophylax cingulatus and Halesus appenninus.

  7. Larval salamanders and channel geomorphology are indicators of hydrologic permanence in forested headwater streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regulatory agencies need rapid indicators of hydrologic permanence for jurisdictional determinations of headwater streams. Our study objective was to assess the utility of larval salamander presence and assemblage structure and habitat variables for determining stream permanence ...

  8. Protective Immunity Induced by DNA Vaccination against Ranavirus Infection in Chinese Giant Salamander Andrias davidianus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhong-Yuan Chen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Andrias davidianus ranavirus (ADRV is an emerging viral pathogen that causes severe systemic hemorrhagic disease in Chinese giant salamanders. There is an urgent need for developing an effective vaccine against this fatal disease. In this study, DNA vaccines containing the ADRV 2L gene (pcDNA-2L and the 58L gene (pcDNA-58L were respectively constructed, and their immune protective effects were evaluated in Chinese giant salamanders. In vitro and in vivo expression of the vaccine plasmids were confirmed in transfected cells and muscle tissues of vaccinated Chinese giant salamanders by using immunoblot analysis or RT-PCR. Following ADRV challenge, the Chinese giant salamanders vaccinated with pcDNA-2L showed a relative percent survival (RPS of 66.7%, which was significant higher than that in Chinese giant salamanders immunized with pcDNA-58L (RPS of 3.3%. Moreover, the specific antibody against ADRV was detected in Chinese giant salamanders vaccinated with pcDNA-2L at 14 and 21 days post-vaccination by indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA. Transcriptional analysis revealed that the expression levels of immune-related genes including type I interferon (IFN, myxovirus resistance (Mx, major histocompatibility complex class IA (MHC IA, and immunoglobulin M (IgM were strongly up-regulated after vaccination with pcDNA-2L. Furthermore, vaccination with pcDNA-2L significantly suppressed the virus replication, which was seen by a low viral load in the spleen of Chinese giant salamander survivals after ADRV challenge. These results indicated that pcDNA-2L could induce a significant innate immune response and an adaptive immune response involving both humoral and cell-mediated immunity that conferred effective protection against ADRV infection, and might be a potential vaccine candidate for controlling ADRV disease in Chinese giant salamanders.

  9. Tiger salamanders' (Ambystoma tigrinum) response learning and usage of visual cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kundey, Shannon M A; Millar, Roberto; McPherson, Justin; Gonzalez, Maya; Fitz, Aleyna; Allen, Chadbourne

    2016-05-01

    We explored tiger salamanders' (Ambystoma tigrinum) learning to execute a response within a maze as proximal visual cue conditions varied. In Experiment 1, salamanders learned to turn consistently in a T-maze for reinforcement before the maze was rotated. All learned the initial task and executed the trained turn during test, suggesting that they learned to demonstrate the reinforced response during training and continued to perform it during test. In a second experiment utilizing a similar procedure, two visual cues were placed consistently at the maze junction. Salamanders were reinforced for turning towards one cue. Cue placement was reversed during test. All learned the initial task, but executed the trained turn rather than turning towards the visual cue during test, evidencing response learning. In Experiment 3, we investigated whether a compound visual cue could control salamanders' behaviour when it was the only cue predictive of reinforcement in a cross-maze by varying start position and cue placement. All learned to turn in the direction indicated by the compound visual cue, indicating that visual cues can come to control their behaviour. Following training, testing revealed that salamanders attended to stimuli foreground over background features. Overall, these results suggest that salamanders learn to execute responses over learning to use visual cues but can use visual cues if required. Our success with this paradigm offers the potential in future studies to explore salamanders' cognition further, as well as to shed light on how features of the tiger salamanders' life history (e.g. hibernation and metamorphosis) impact cognition.

  10. Diagnostic and molecular evaluation of three iridovirus-associated salamander mortality events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Docherty, D.E.; Meteyer, C.U.; Wang, Jingyuan; Mao, J.; Case, S.T.; Chinchar, V.G.

    2003-01-01

    In 1998 viruses were isolated from tiger salamander larvae (Ambystoma tigrinum diaboli and A. tigrinum melanostictum) involved in North Dakota and Utah (USA) mortality events and spotted salamander (A. maculatum) larvae in a third event in Maine (USA). Although sympatric caudates and anurans were present at all three sites only ambystomid larvae appeared to be affected. Mortality at the North Dakota site was in the thousands while at the Utah and Maine sites mortality was in the hundreds. Sick larvae were lethargic and slow moving. They swam in circles with obvious buoyancy problems and were unable to remain upright. On the ventral surface, near the gills and hind limbs, red spots or swollen areas were noted. Necropsy findings included: hemorrhages and ulceration of the skin, subcutaneous and intramuscular edema, swollen and pale livers with multifocal hemorrhage, and distended fluid-filled intestines with areas of hemorrhage. Light microscopy revealed intracytoplasmic inclusions, suggestive of a viral infection, in a variety of organs. Electron microscopy of ultra thin sections of the same tissues revealed iridovirus-like particles within the inclusions. These viruses were isolated from a variety of organs, indicating a systemic infection. Representative viral isolates from the three mortality events were characterized using molecular assays. Characterization confirmed that the viral isolates were iridoviruses and that the two tiger salamander isolates were similar and could be distinguished from the spotted salamander isolate. The spotted salamander isolate was similar to frog virus 3, the type species of the genus Ranavirus, while the tiger salamander isolates were not. These data indicate that different species of salamanders can become infected and die in association with different iridoviruses. Challenge assays are required to determine the fish and amphibian host range of these isolates and to assess the susceptibility of tiger and spotted salamanders to

  11. MoSI (Monitoreo de Sobrevivencia Invernal): assessing habitat-specific overwintering survival of neotropical migratory landbirds

    Science.gov (United States)

    David F. DeSante; T. Scott Sillett; Rodney B. Siegel; James F. Saracco; Claudia A. Romo de Vivar Alvarez; Salvadora Morales; Alexis Cerezo; Danielle R. Kaschube; Manuel Grosselet; Borja Mila

    2005-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that population declines in many Neotropical-wintering migratory landbird species are caused by habitat loss and degradation on their wintering grounds. Such habitat loss and degradation can lower overwintering survival rates and cause surviving birds to leave their wintering grounds in poor physical condition, leading to high mortality during...

  12. Coleopterous galls from the Neotropical region

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    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.

  13. Woodland salamander responses to a shelterwood harvest-prescribed burn silvicultural treatment within Appalachian mixed-oak forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, W. Mark; Mahoney, Kathleen R.; Russell, Kevin R.; Rodrigue, Jane L.; Riddle, Jason D.; Schuler, Thomas M.; Adams, Mary Beth

    2015-01-01

    Forest management practices that mimic natural canopy disturbances, including prescribed fire and timber harvests, may reduce competition and facilitate establishment of favorable vegetative species within various ecosystems. Fire suppression in the central Appalachian region for almost a century has contributed to a transition from oak-dominated to more mesophytic, fire-intolerant forest communities. Prescribed fire coupled with timber removal is currently implemented to aid in oak regeneration and establishment but responses of woodland salamanders to this complex silvicultural system is poorly documented. The purpose of our research was to determine how woodland salamanders respond to shelterwood harvests following successive burns in a central Appalachian mixed-oak forest. Woodland salamanders were surveyed using coverboard arrays in May, July, and August–September 2011 and 2012. Surveys were conducted within fenced shelterwood-burn (prescribed fires, shelterwood harvest, and fencing to prevent white-tailed deer [Odocoileus virginianus] herbivory), shelterwood-burn (prescribed fires and shelterwood harvest), and control plots. Relative abundance was modeled in relation to habitat variables measured within treatments for mountain dusky salamanders (Desmognathus ochrophaeus), slimy salamanders (Plethodon glutinosus), and eastern red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus). Mountain dusky salamander relative abundance was positively associated with canopy cover and there were significantly more individuals within controls than either shelterwood-burn or fenced shelterwood-burn treatments. Conversely, habitat variables associated with slimy salamanders and eastern red-backed salamanders did not differ among treatments. Salamander age-class structure within controls did not differ from shelterwood-burn or fenced shelterwood-burn treatments for any species. Overall, the woodland salamander assemblage remained relatively intact throughout the shelterwoodburn

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. 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...

  17. Olfactory effects of a hypervariable multicomponent pheromone in the red-legged salamander, Plethodon shermani.

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    Damien B Wilburn

    Full Text Available Chemical communication via chemosensory signaling is an essential process for promoting and modifying reproductive behavior in many species. During courtship in plethodontid salamanders, males deliver a mixture of non-volatile proteinaceous pheromones that activate chemosensory neurons in the vomeronasal epithelium (VNE and increase female receptivity. One component of this mixture, Plethodontid Modulating Factor (PMF, is a hypervariable pheromone expressed as more than 30 unique isoforms that differ between individual males-likely driven by co-evolution with female receptors to promote gene duplication and positive selection of the PMF gene complex. Courtship trials with females receiving different PMF isoform mixtures had variable effects on female mating receptivity, with only the most complex mixtures increasing receptivity, such that we believe that sufficient isoform diversity allows males to improve their reproductive success with any female in the mating population. The aim of this study was to test the effects of isoform variability on VNE neuron activation using the agmatine uptake assay. All isoform mixtures activated a similar number of neurons (>200% over background except for a single purified PMF isoform (+17%. These data further support the hypothesis that PMF isoforms act synergistically in order to regulate female receptivity, and different putative mechanisms are discussed.

  18. 76 FR 55413 - Proposed Safe Harbor Agreement for California Red-legged Frog, California Tiger Salamander, Smith...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-07

    ...] Proposed Safe Harbor Agreement for California Red-legged Frog, California Tiger Salamander, Smith's Blue... endangered Smith's blue butterfly (Euphilotes enoptes smithi) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as..., California tiger salamander, Smith's blue butterfly, and Yadon's piperia on the property subject to the...

  19. Abundance of western red-backed salamanders (Plethodon vehiculum) in the Washington Coast Range after headwater stream-buffer manipulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randall J. Wilk; Jeffrey D. Ricklefs; Martin G. Raphael

    2014-01-01

    We evaluated the effect of forest riparian alternative tree buffer designs on Western Red-backed Salamanders (Plethodon vehiculum) along headwater stream banks in managed forests of the Washington Coast Range. We used pit trap live removals in early autumn to estimate relative abundances of surface-active salamanders before and after 3 levels of riparian buffer...

  20. Digits lost or gained? Evidence for pedal evolution in the dwarf salamander complex (Eurycea, Plethodontidae.

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    Trip Lamb

    Full Text Available Change in digit number, particularly digit loss, has occurred repeatedly over the evolutionary history of tetrapods. Although digit loss has been documented among distantly related species of salamanders, it is relatively uncommon in this amphibian order. For example, reduction from five to four toes appears to have evolved just three times in the morphologically and ecologically diverse family Plethodontidae. Here we report a molecular phylogenetic analysis for one of these four-toed lineages--the Eurycea quadridigitata complex (dwarf salamanders--emphasizing relationships to other species in the genus. A multilocus phylogeny reveals that dwarf salamanders are paraphyletic with respect to a complex of five-toed, paedomorphic Eurycea from the Edwards Plateau in Texas. We use this phylogeny to examine evolution of digit number within the dwarf-Edwards Plateau clade, testing contrasting hypotheses of digit loss (parallelism among dwarf salamanders versus digit gain (re-evolution in the Edwards Plateau complex. Bayes factors analysis provides statistical support for a five-toed common ancestor at the dwarf-Edwards node, favoring, slightly, the parallelism hypothesis for digit loss. More importantly, our phylogenetic results pinpoint a rare event in the pedal evolution of plethodontid salamanders.

  1. Anatomy, function, and evolution of jaw and hyobranchial muscles in cryptobranchoid salamander larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinteich, Thomas; Herzen, Julia; Beckmann, Felix; Matsui, Masafumi; Haas, Alexander

    2014-02-01

    Larval salamanders (Lissamphibia: Caudata) are known to be effective suction feeders in their aquatic environments, although they will eventually transform into terrestrial tongue feeding adults during metamorphosis. Early tetrapods may have had a similar biphasic life cycle and this makes larval salamanders a particularly interesting model to study the anatomy, function, development, and evolution of the feeding apparatus in terrestrial vertebrates. Here, we provide a description of the muscles that are involved in the feeding strike in salamander larvae of the Hynobiidae and compare them to larvae of the paedomorphic Cryptobranchidae. We provide a functional and evolutionary interpretation for the observed muscle characters. The cranial muscles in larvae from species of the Hynobiidae and Cryptobranchidae are generally very similar. Most notable are the differences in the presence of the m. hyomandibularis, a muscle that connects the hyobranchial apparatus with the lower jaw. We found this muscle only in Onychodactylus japonicus (Hynobiidae) but not in other hynobiid or cryptobranchid salamanders. Interestingly, the m. hyomandibularis in O. japonicus originates from the ceratobranchial I and not the ceratohyal, and thus exhibits what was previously assumed to be the derived condition. Finally, we applied a biomechanical model to simulate suction feeding in larval salamanders. We provide evidence that a flattened shape of the hyobranchial apparatus in its resting position is beneficial for a fast and successful suction feeding strike. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Understanding positional cues in salamander limb regeneration: implications for optimizing cell-based regenerative therapies

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    Catherine D. McCusker

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Regenerative medicine has reached the point where we are performing clinical trials with stem-cell-derived cell populations in an effort to treat numerous human pathologies. However, many of these efforts have been challenged by the inability of the engrafted populations to properly integrate into the host environment to make a functional biological unit. It is apparent that we must understand the basic biology of tissue integration in order to apply these principles to the development of regenerative therapies in humans. Studying tissue integration in model organisms, where the process of integration between the newly regenerated tissues and the ‘old’ existing structures can be observed and manipulated, can provide valuable insights. Embryonic and adult cells have a memory of their original position, and this positional information can modify surrounding tissues and drive the formation of new structures. In this Review, we discuss the positional interactions that control the ability of grafted cells to integrate into existing tissues during the process of salamander limb regeneration, and discuss how these insights could explain the integration defects observed in current cell-based regenerative therapies. Additionally, we describe potential molecular tools that can be used to manipulate the positional information in grafted cell populations, and to promote the communication of positional cues in the host environment to facilitate the integration of engrafted cells. Lastly, we explain how studying positional information in current cell-based therapies and in regenerating limbs could provide key insights to improve the integration of cell-based regenerative therapies in the future.

  3. Road deicing salt irreversibly disrupts osmoregulation of salamander egg clutches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karraker, Nancy E; Gibbs, James P

    2011-03-01

    It has been postulated that road deicing salts are sufficiently diluted by spring rains to ameliorate any physiological impacts to amphibians breeding in wetlands near roads. We tested this conjecture by exposing clutches of the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) to three chloride concentrations (1 mg/L, 145 mg/L, 945 mg/L) for nine days, then transferred clutches to control water for nine days, and measured change in mass at three-day intervals. We measured mass change because water uptake by clutches reduces risks to embryos associated with freezing, predation, and disease. Clutches in controls sequestered water asymptotically. Those in the moderate concentrations lost 18% mass initially and regained 14% after transfer to control water. Clutches in high concentration lost 33% mass and then lost an additional 8% after transfer. Our results suggest that spring rains do not ameliorate the effects of deicing salts in wetlands with extremely high chloride concentrations. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Heterogeneous vesicles in mucous epithelial cells of posterior esophagus of Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus

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    H. Zhang

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese giant salamander belongs to an old lineage of salamanders and endangered species. Many studies of breeding and disease regarding this amphibian had been implemented. However, the studies on the ultrastructure of this amphibian are rare. In this work, we provide a histological and ultrastructural investigation on posterior esophagus of Chinese giant salamander. The sections of amphibian esophagus were stained by hematoxylin & eosin (H&E. Moreover, the esophageal epithelium was observed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM. The results showed that esophageal epithelium was a single layer epithelium, which consisted of mucous cells and columnar cells. The esophageal glands were present in submucosa. The columnar cells were ciliated. According to the diverging ultrastructure of mucous vesicles, three types of mucous cells could be identified in the esophageal mucosa: i electron-lucent vesicles mucous cell (ELV-MC; ii electron-dense vesicles mucous cell (EDV-MC; and iii mixed vesicles mucous cell (MV-MC.

  5. [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.

  6. 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.

  7. Molecular Phylogeny and Historical Biogeography of the Neotropical Swarm-Founding Social Wasp Genus Synoeca (Hymenoptera: Vespidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menezes, Rodolpho Santos Telles; Brady, Seán Gary; Carvalho, Antônio Freire; Del Lama, Marco Antonio; Costa, Marco Antônio

    2015-01-01

    The Neotropical Region harbors high biodiversity and many studies on mammals, reptiles, amphibians and avifauna have investigated the causes for this pattern. However, there is a paucity of such studies that focus on Neotropical insect groups. Synoeca de Saussure, 1852 is a Neotropical swarm-founding social wasp genus with five described species that is broadly and conspicuously distributed throughout the Neotropics. Here, we infer the phylogenetic relationships, diversification times, and historical biogeography of Synoeca species. We also investigate samples of the disjoint populations of S. septentrionalis that occur in both northwestern parts of South America through Central American and the Brazilian Atlantic rainforests. Our results showed that the interspecific relationships for Synoeca could be described as follows: (S. chalibea + S. virginea) + (S. cyanea + (S. septentrionalis/S. surinama)). Notably, samples of S. septentrionalis and S. surinama collected in the Atlantic Forest were interrelated and may be the result of incomplete lineage sorting and/or mitochondrial introgression among them. Our Bayesian divergence dating analysis revealed recent Plio-Pleistocene diversification in Synoeca. Moreover, our biogeographical analysis suggested an Amazonian origin of Synoeca, with three main dispersal events subsequently occurring during the Plio-Pleistocene. PMID:25738705

  8. Molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography of the neotropical swarm-founding social wasp genus Synoeca (Hymenoptera: Vespidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolpho Santos Telles Menezes

    Full Text Available The Neotropical Region harbors high biodiversity and many studies on mammals, reptiles, amphibians and avifauna have investigated the causes for this pattern. However, there is a paucity of such studies that focus on Neotropical insect groups. Synoeca de Saussure, 1852 is a Neotropical swarm-founding social wasp genus with five described species that is broadly and conspicuously distributed throughout the Neotropics. Here, we infer the phylogenetic relationships, diversification times, and historical biogeography of Synoeca species. We also investigate samples of the disjoint populations of S. septentrionalis that occur in both northwestern parts of South America through Central American and the Brazilian Atlantic rainforests. Our results showed that the interspecific relationships for Synoeca could be described as follows: (S. chalibea + S. virginea + (S. cyanea + (S. septentrionalis/S. surinama. Notably, samples of S. septentrionalis and S. surinama collected in the Atlantic Forest were interrelated and may be the result of incomplete lineage sorting and/or mitochondrial introgression among them. Our Bayesian divergence dating analysis revealed recent Plio-Pleistocene diversification in Synoeca. Moreover, our biogeographical analysis suggested an Amazonian origin of Synoeca, with three main dispersal events subsequently occurring during the Plio-Pleistocene.

  9. Mechanics of lung ventilation in a post-metamorphic salamander, Ambystoma Tigrinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simons, R S; Bennett, W O; Brainerd, E L

    2000-03-01

    The mechanics of lung ventilation in frogs and aquatic salamanders has been well characterized, whereas lung ventilation in terrestrial-phase (post-metamorphic) salamanders has received little attention. We used electromyography (EMG), X-ray videography, standard videography and buccal and body cavity pressure measurements to characterize the ventilation mechanics of adult (post-metamorphic) tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum). Three results emerged: (i) under terrestrial conditions or when floating at the surface of the water, adult A. tigrinum breathed through their nares using a two-stroke buccal pump; (ii) in addition to this narial two-stroke pump, adult tiger salamanders also gulped air in through their mouths using a modified two-stroke buccal pump when in an aquatic environment; and (iii) exhalation in adult tiger salamanders is active during aquatic gulping breaths, whereas exhalation appears to be passive during terrestrial breathing at rest. Active exhalation in aquatic breaths is indicated by an increase in body cavity pressure during exhalation and associated EMG activity in the lateral hypaxial musculature, particularly the M. transversus abdominis. In terrestrial breathing, no EMG activity in the lateral hypaxial muscles is generally present, and body cavity pressure decreases during exhalation. In aquatic breaths, tidal volume is larger than in terrestrial breaths, and breathing frequency is much lower (approximately 1 breath 10 min(-)(1 )versus 4-6 breaths min(-)(1)). The use of hypaxial muscles to power active exhalation in the aquatic environment may result from the need for more complete exhalation and larger tidal volumes when breathing infrequently. This hypothesis is supported by previous findings that terrestrial frogs ventilate their lungs with small tidal volumes and exhale passively, whereas aquatic frogs and salamanders use large tidal volumes and and exhale actively.

  10. Genomic sequence of a ranavirus (family Iridoviridae) associated with salamander mortalities in North America

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jancovich, James K; Jinghe, Mao; Chinchar, V Gregory; Wyatt, Christopher; Case, Steven T; Kumar, Sudhir; Valente, Graziela; Subramanian, Sankar; Davidson, Elizabeth W; Collins, James P; Jacobs, Bertram L

    2003-11-10

    Disease is among the suspected causes of amphibian population declines, and an iridovirus and a chytrid fungus are the primary pathogens associated with amphibian mortalities. Ambystoma tigrinum virus (ATV) and a closely related strain, Regina ranavirus (RRV), are implicated in salamander die-offs in Arizona and Canada, respectively. We report the complete sequence of the ATV genome and partial sequence of the RRV genome. Sequence analysis of the ATV/RRV genomes showed marked similarity to other ranaviruses, including tiger frog virus (TFV) and frog virus 3 (FV3), the type virus of the genus Ranavirus (family Iridoviridae), as well as more distant relationships to lymphocystis disease virus, Chilo iridescent virus, and infectious spleen and kidney necrosis virus. Putative open reading frames (ORFs) in the ATV sequence identified 24 genes that appear to control virus replication and block antiviral responses. In addition, >50 other putative genes, homologous to ORFs in other iridoviral genomes but of unknown function, were also identified. Sequence comparison performed by dot plot analysis between ATV and itself revealed a conserved 14-bp palindromic repeat within most intragenic regions. Dot plot analysis of ATV vs RRV sequences identified several polymorphisms between the two isolates. Finally, a comparison of ATV and TFV genomic sequences identified genomic rearrangements consistent with the high recombination frequency of iridoviruses. Given the adverse effects that ranavirus infections have on amphibian and fish populations, ATV/RRV sequence information will allow the design of better diagnostic probes for identifying ranavirus infections and extend our understanding of molecular events in ranavirus-infected cells.

  11. Genomic sequence of a ranavirus (family Iridoviridae) associated with salamander mortalities in North America

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jancovich, James K.; Mao Jinghe; Chinchar, V. Gregory; Wyatt, Christopher; Case, Steven T.; Kumar, Sudhir; Valente, Graziela; Subramanian, Sankar; Davidson, Elizabeth W.; Collins, James P.; Jacobs, Bertram L.

    2003-01-01

    Disease is among the suspected causes of amphibian population declines, and an iridovirus and a chytrid fungus are the primary pathogens associated with amphibian mortalities. Ambystoma tigrinum virus (ATV) and a closely related strain, Regina ranavirus (RRV), are implicated in salamander die-offs in Arizona and Canada, respectively. We report the complete sequence of the ATV genome and partial sequence of the RRV genome. Sequence analysis of the ATV/RRV genomes showed marked similarity to other ranaviruses, including tiger frog virus (TFV) and frog virus 3 (FV3), the type virus of the genus Ranavirus (family Iridoviridae), as well as more distant relationships to lymphocystis disease virus, Chilo iridescent virus, and infectious spleen and kidney necrosis virus. Putative open reading frames (ORFs) in the ATV sequence identified 24 genes that appear to control virus replication and block antiviral responses. In addition, >50 other putative genes, homologous to ORFs in other iridoviral genomes but of unknown function, were also identified. Sequence comparison performed by dot plot analysis between ATV and itself revealed a conserved 14-bp palindromic repeat within most intragenic regions. Dot plot analysis of ATV vs RRV sequences identified several polymorphisms between the two isolates. Finally, a comparison of ATV and TFV genomic sequences identified genomic rearrangements consistent with the high recombination frequency of iridoviruses. Given the adverse effects that ranavirus infections have on amphibian and fish populations, ATV/RRV sequence information will allow the design of better diagnostic probes for identifying ranavirus infections and extend our understanding of molecular events in ranavirus-infected cells

  12. The effect of waist twisting on walking speed of an amphibious salamander like robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Xin-Yan; Jia, Li-Chao; Wang, Chen; Xie, Guang-Ming

    2016-06-01

    Amphibious salamanders often swing their waist to coordinate quadruped walking in order to improve their crawling speed. A robot with a swing waist joint, like an amphibious salamander, is used to mimic this locomotion. A control method is designed to allow the robot to maintain the rotational speed of its legs continuous and avoid impact between its legs and the ground. An analytical expression is established between the amplitude of the waist joint and the step length. Further, an optimization amplitude is obtained corresponding to the maximum stride. The simulation results based on automatic dynamic analysis of mechanical systems (ADAMS) and physical experiments verify the rationality and validity of this expression.

  13. Infection of spotted salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) with Ichthyophonus-like organisms in Virginia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ware, Joy L; Viverette, Cathy; Kleopfer, John D; Pletcher, Leeanna; Massey, Davis; Wright, Anne

    2008-01-01

    Ichthyophonus-like organisms were found in two free-ranging adult spotted salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) captured within two different vernal ponds in the Virginia Commonwealth University Rice Center for Environmental Life Sciences in Charles City County, Virginia. Histopathologic examination of necropsied specimens revealed large spores, often enclosed by granulomas. These enclosed spores resembled those caused by the fish pathogen Ichthyophonus hoeferi. One salamander displayed an externally visible large swelling beneath the jaws. The other lacked macroscopic abnormalities, but histologic sections of ventral muscle revealed early-stage Ichthyophonus-like organisms and minimal granulomatous reactions. This is the first report of Ichthyophonus-like infection of Ambystoma maculatum in Virginia.

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

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    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.

  15. Assessment of intra and interregional genetic variation in the Eastern Red-backed Salamander, Plethodon cinereus, via analysis of novel microsatellite markers.

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    Alexander C Cameron

    Full Text Available The red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus has long-served as a model system in ecology, evolution, and behavior, and studies surveying molecular variation in this species have become increasingly common over the past decade. However, difficulties are commonly encountered when extending microsatellite markers to populations that are unstudied from a genetic perspective due to high levels of genetic differentiation across this species' range. To ameliorate this issue, we used 454 pyrosequencing to identify hundreds of microsatellite loci. We then screened 40 of our top candidate loci in populations in Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio-including an isolated island population ~ 4.5 km off the shore of Lake Erie (South Bass Island. We identified 25 loci that are polymorphic in a well-studied region of Virginia and 11 of these loci were polymorphic in populations located in the genetically unstudied regions of Ohio and Pennsylvania. Use of these loci to examine patterns of variation within populations revealed that South Bass Island has low diversity in comparison to other sites. However, neither South Bass Island nor isolated populations around Cleveland are inbred. Assessment of variation between populations revealed three well defined genetic clusters corresponding to Virginia, mainland Ohio/Pennsylvania, and South Bass Island. Comparisons of our results to those of others working in various parts of the range are consistent with the idea that differentiation is lower in regions that were once glaciated. However, these comparisons also suggest that well differentiated isolated populations in the formerly glaciated portion of the range are not uncommon. This work provides novel genetic resources that will facilitate population genetic studies in a part of the red-backed salamander's range that has not previously been studied in this manner. Moreover, this work refines our understanding of how neutral variation is distributed in this ecologically

  16. Phylogeographic structure of Canthon cyanellus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), a Neotropical dung beetle in the Mexican Transition Zone: Insights on its origin and the impacts of Pleistocene climatic fluctuations on population dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolasco-Soto, Janet; González-Astorga, Jorge; Espinosa de Los Monteros, Alejandro; Galante-Patiño, Eduardo; Favila, Mario E

    2017-04-01

    Canthon cyanellus is a roller dung beetle with a wide distribution range in the tropical forests of the New World. In Mexico, it inhabits the Pacific and the Gulf coasts, the Yucatan Peninsula and the south mainly in the State of Chiapas. This species shows a wide geographical variation in cuticle color, which has been used as defining trait for subspecies. In this study we analyzed the phylogeographic and demographic history of the Mexican populations of C. cyanellus using DNA sequences of the nuclear ITS2, and the mitochondrial COI and 16S genes. We found that not all the current valid subspecies are supported by the molecular analysis. The populations are genetically and geographically structured in five lineages. The diversification events that gave origin to the main lineages within this species complex occurred during the Pleistocine in a time range of 1.63-0.91Myr. The demographic history of these lineages suggests post-glacial expansions toward the middle and the end of the Pleistocene. The combined data of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA suggest that the phylogeographic structure and demographic history of the C. cyanellus populations are the result of: the geological and volcanic activity that occurred from the end of the Pliocene to the Pleistocene; and the contraction and expansion of tropical forests due to the glacial and inter-glacial cycles during the Pleistocene. Landscape changes derived from historical events have affected the demographic history of the populations of this species. The results presented here point to the need to review the taxonomic status and delimitation of the lineages encompassed in the Canthon cyanellus complex. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Molecular characterization and expression analysis of cathepsin C in Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus after Aeromonas hydrophila infection

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    Zisheng Wang

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cathepsin C (CTSC (dipeptidyl peptidase I, DPPI, is a member of the papain superfamily of cysteine proteases and involves in a variety of host reactions. However, the information of CTST in Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus, an amphibian species with important evolutionary position and economic values, remained unclear. Results: The full-length salamander CTSC cDNA contained a 96 bp of 5′-UTR, a 1392 bp of ORF encoding 463 amino acids, and a 95 bp of 3′-UTR. The salamander CTSC possessed several sequence features similar to other reported CTSCs such as a signal peptide, a propeptide and a mature peptide. The active site triad of Cys, His and Asn were also found existing in salamander CTSC. Salamander CTSC mRNA was constitutively expressed in all the examined tissues with significantly variant expression level. The highest expression of CTSC was in intestine, followed with stomach, spleen, lung and brain. Following Aeromonas hydrophila infection for 12 h, salamander CTSC was significantly up-regulated in several tissues including lung, spleen, brain, kidney, heart, stomach and skin. Conclusion: CTSC plays roles in the immune response to bacterial infection, which provided valuable information for further studying the functions of CTSC in salamander. Keywords: cDNA, CTSC, Dipeptidyl peptidase I, Gene expression, Hydrophila, Immune, Peptide, Sequence, Tissue

  18. Long bone histology of the stem salamander Kokartus honorarius (Amphibia: Caudata) from the Middle Jurassic of Kyrgyzstan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skutschas, Pavel; Stein, Koen

    2015-04-01

    Kokartus honorarius from the Middle Jurassic (Bathonian) of Kyrgyzstan is one of the oldest salamanders in the fossil record, characterized by a mixture of plesiomorphic morphological features and characters shared with crown-group salamanders. Here we present a detailed histological analysis of its long bones. The analysis of a growth series demonstrates a significant histological maturation during ontogeny, expressed by the progressive appearance of longitudinally oriented primary vascular canals, primary osteons, growth marks, remodelling features in primary bone tissues, as well as progressive resorption of the calcified cartilage, formation of endochondral bone and development of cartilaginous to bony trabeculae in the epiphyses. Apart from the presence of secondary osteons, the long bone histology of Kokartus is very similar to that of miniaturized temnospondyls, other Jurassic stem salamanders, miniaturized seymouriamorphs and modern crown-group salamanders. We propose that the presence of secondary osteons in Kokartus honorarius is a plesiomorphic feature, and the loss of secondary osteons in the long bones of crown-group salamanders as well as in those of miniaturized temnospondyls is the result of miniaturization processes. Hitherto, all stem salamander long bong histology (Kokartus, Marmorerpeton and 'salamander A') has been generally described as having paedomorphic features (i.e. the presence of Katschenko's Line and a layer of calcified cartilage), these taxa were thus most likely neotenic forms. The absence of clear lines of arrested growth and annuli in long bones of Kokartus honorarius suggests that the animals lived in an environment with stable local conditions. © 2015 Anatomical Society.

  19. Molecular mechanisms of extensive mitochondrial gene rearrangementin plethodontid salamanders

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mueller, Rachel Lockridge; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-06-01

    Extensive gene rearrangement is reported in the mitochondrial genomes of lungless salamanders (Plethodontidae). In each genome with a novel gene order, there is evidence that the rearrangement was mediated by duplication of part of the mitochondrial genome, including the presence of both pseudogenes and additional, presumably functional, copies of duplicated genes. All rearrangement-mediating duplications include either the origin of light strand replication and the nearby tRNA genes or the regions flanking the origin of heavy strand replication. The latter regions comprise nad6, trnE, cob, trnT, an intergenic spacer between trnT and trnP and, in some genomes, trnP, the control region, trnF, rrnS, trnV, rrnL, trnL1, and nad1. In some cases, two copies of duplicated genes, presumptive regulatory regions, and/or sequences with no assignable function have been retained in the genome following the initial duplication; in other genomes, only one of the duplicated copies has been retained. Both tandem and non-tandem duplications are present in these genomes, suggesting different duplication mechanisms. In some of these mtDNAs, up to 25 percent of the total length is composed of tandem duplications of non-coding sequence that includes putative regulatory regions and/or pseudogenes of tRNAs and protein-coding genes along with otherwise unassignable sequences. These data indicate that imprecise initiation and termination of replication, slipped-strand mispairing, and intra-molecular recombination may all have played a role in generating repeats during the evolutionary history of plethodontid mitochondrial genomes.

  20. 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.

  1. Large-scale phylogeography of the disjunct Neotropical tree species Schizolobium parahyba (Fabaceae-Caesalpinioideae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turchetto-Zolet, Andreia C; Cruz, Fernanda; Vendramin, Giovanni G; Simon, Marcelo F; Salgueiro, Fabiano; Margis-Pinheiro, Marcia; Margis, Rogerio

    2012-10-01

    Neotropical rainforests exhibit high levels of endemism and diversity. Although the evolutionary genetics of plant diversification has garnered increased interest, phylogeographic studies of widely distributed species remain scarce. Here we describe chloroplast and nuclear variation patterns in Schizolobium parahyba (Fabaceae), a widespread tree in Neotropical rainforests that harbor two varieties with a disjunct distribution. Chloroplast and nuclear sequence analyses yielded 21 and 4 haplotypes, respectively. Two genetic diversity centers that correlate with the two known varieties were identified: the Southeastern Atlantic forest and the Amazonian basin. In contrast, the populations from southern and northeastern Atlantic forests and Andean-Central American forests exhibited low levels of genetic diversity and divergent haplotypes, likely related to historical processes that impact the flora and fauna in these regions, such as a founder's effect after dispersion and demographic expansion. Phylogeographic and demographic patterns suggest that episodes of genetic isolation and dispersal events have shaped the evolutionary history for this species, and different patterns have guided the evolution of S. parahyba. Moreover, the results of this study suggest that the dry corridor formed by Cerrado and Caatinga ecoregions and the Andean uplift acted as barriers to this species' gene flow, a picture that may be generalized to most of the plant biodiversity tropical woodlands and forests. These results also reinforce the importance of evaluating multiple genetic markers for a more comprehensive understanding of population structure and history. Our results provide insight into the conservation efforts and ongoing work on the genetics of population divergence and speciation in these Neotropical rainforests. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Projected loss of a salamander diversity hotspot as a consequence of projected global climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph R. Milanovich; William E. Peterman; Nathan P. Nibbelink; John C. Maerz

    2010-01-01

    Background: Significant shifts in climate are considered a threat to plants and animals with significant physiological limitations and limited dispersal abilities. The southern Appalachian Mountains are a global hotspot for plethodontid salamander diversity. Plethodontids are lungless ectotherms, so their ecology is strongly governed by temperature and precipitation....

  3. Data from proteomic analysis of the skin of Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaofang Geng

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus, renowned as a living fossil, is the largest and longest-lived amphibian species in the world. Its skin is rich in collagens, and has developed mucous gland which could secrete a large amount of mucus under the scraping and electric stimulation. The molting is the degraded skin stratum corneum. To establish the functional skin proteome of Chinese giant salamander, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2DE and mass spectrometry (MS were applied to detect the composition and relative abundance of the proteins in the skin, mucus and molting. The determination of the general proteome in the skin can potentially serve as a foundation for future studies characterizing the skin proteomes from diseased salamander to provide molecular and mechanistic insights into various disease states and potential therapeutic interventions. Data presented here are also related to the research article “Proteomic analysis of the skin of Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus” in the Journal of Proteomics [1].

  4. A new approach for surveying the Alpine Salamander (Salamandra atra in Austria

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    Ursula Reinthaler-Lottermoser

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The Alpine Salamander is a small pitch black amphibian which is endemic to the European Alps and the Dinarides. It is strictly protected according to the European FFH guidelines. Despite its central role in the alpine ecosystem our actual published record in Austria is small. In order to resolve this shortcoming our project explores its distribution in Austria. It uses a participatory and community based approach to gather data. Everybody can enter and look at Alpine Salamander observations on our website www.alpensalamander.eu. This approach also allows us to establish an “oral history” of Salamander observations in the past 50 years by conducting interviews in the local community. Since July 2009 the website and salamander report database are online. From the actual data (more than 5600 records we already obtained an overview about the present distribution and data quality. The data are an excellent basis for detailed scientific studies on these remarkable amphibians. With this new and highly interactive approach science and education are combined to initiate protection measures with the public.

  5. Exceptional soft tissues preservation in a mummified frog-eating Eocene salamander

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    Jérémy Tissier

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Fossils are almost always represented by hard tissues but we present here the exceptional case of a three-dimensionally preserved specimen that was ‘mummified’ (likely between 40 and 34 million years ago in a terrestrial karstic environment. This fossil is the incomplete body of a salamander, Phosphotriton sigei, whose skeleton and external morphology are well preserved, as revealed by phase-contrast synchrotron X-ray microtomography. In addition, internal structures composed of soft tissues preserved in three dimensions are now identified: a lung, the spinal cord, a lumbosacral plexus, the digestive tract, muscles and urogenital organs that may be cloacal glands. These are among the oldest known cases of three-dimensional preservation of these organs in vertebrates and shed light on the ecology of this salamander. Indeed, the digestive tract contains remains of a frog, which represents the only known case of an extinct salamander that fed on a frog, an extremely rare type of predation in extant salamanders. These new data improve our scarce knowledge on soft tissue anatomy of early urodeles and should prove useful for future biologists and palaeontologists working on urodele evolutionary biology. We also suggest that the presence of bat guano and carcasses represented a close source of phosphorus, favouring preservation of soft tissues. Bone microanatomy indicates that P. sigei was likely amphibious or terrestrial, and was probably not neotenic.

  6. A new species of salamander (Bolitoglossa: Plethodontidae from the Cordillera Oriental of the Colombian Andes

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    Andrés R. Acosta-Galvis

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Eight species of salamanders are recognized to Cordillera Oriental of Colombia. Here we describe a new species of the genus Bolitoglossa, named Bolitoglossa guaneae sp. nov. The highest number of species of this genus is found in the cloud forests located in the western flank of the Cordillera Oriental.

  7. Macrohabitat models of occurrence for the threatened Cheat Mountain salamander, Plethodon nettingi

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-01-01

    The federally threatened Cheat Mountain salamander (Plethodon nettingi; hereafter CMS) is known to occur at approximately 70 small, scattered sites in the Allegheny Mountains of eastern West Virginia. We used a comparative modeling approach to explain the landscape-level distribution and habitat relationships of CMS in relation to a suite of biotic...

  8. Exceptional soft tissues preservation in a mummified frog-eating Eocene salamander.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tissier, Jérémy; Rage, Jean-Claude; Laurin, Michel

    2017-01-01

    Fossils are almost always represented by hard tissues but we present here the exceptional case of a three-dimensionally preserved specimen that was 'mummified' (likely between 40 and 34 million years ago) in a terrestrial karstic environment. This fossil is the incomplete body of a salamander, Phosphotriton sigei , whose skeleton and external morphology are well preserved, as revealed by phase-contrast synchrotron X-ray microtomography. In addition, internal structures composed of soft tissues preserved in three dimensions are now identified: a lung, the spinal cord, a lumbosacral plexus, the digestive tract, muscles and urogenital organs that may be cloacal glands. These are among the oldest known cases of three-dimensional preservation of these organs in vertebrates and shed light on the ecology of this salamander. Indeed, the digestive tract contains remains of a frog, which represents the only known case of an extinct salamander that fed on a frog, an extremely rare type of predation in extant salamanders. These new data improve our scarce knowledge on soft tissue anatomy of early urodeles and should prove useful for future biologists and palaeontologists working on urodele evolutionary biology. We also suggest that the presence of bat guano and carcasses represented a close source of phosphorus, favouring preservation of soft tissues. Bone microanatomy indicates that P. sigei was likely amphibious or terrestrial, and was probably not neotenic.

  9. Woodland salamanders as metrics of forest ecosystem recovery: a case study from California’s redwoods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart Welsh; Garth Hodgson

    2013-01-01

    Woodland (Plethodontid) salamanders occur in huge numbers in healthy forests in North America where the abundances of many species vary along successional gradients. Their high numbers and trophic role as predators on shredder and decomposer arthropods influence nutrient and carbon pathways at the leaf litter/soil interface. Their extreme niche conservatism and low...

  10. Novel, non-invasive method for distinguishing the individuals of the fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra in capture-mark-recapture studies

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    Goran Šukalo

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Recently we started implementing a highly efficient, non-invasive method of direct individual marking (i.e., typifying in a population study of the fire salamander, Salamandra salamandra. Our technique is based on the unique alphanumeric code for every individual, generated upon the numbers of openings of repellent/toxic skin glands in the yellow areas of the selected regions of the body. This code was proved reliable in the sample of 159 individuals from two separate populations and enabled easy and quick recognition of recaptured animals. The proposed method is inexpensive, easily applicable in the field, involves minimum stress for the animals and does not affect their behaviour and the possibility of repeated captures of “marked” (i.e., coded individuals. It is particularly suitable for dense populations.

  11. Microarray analysis of a salamander hopeful monster reveals transcriptional signatures of paedomorphic brain development

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is considered a hopeful monster because it exhibits an adaptive and derived mode of development - paedomorphosis - that has evolved rapidly and independently among tiger salamanders. Unlike related tiger salamanders that undergo metamorphosis, axolotls retain larval morphological traits into adulthood and thus present an adult body plan that differs dramatically from the ancestral (metamorphic) form. The basis of paedomorphic development was investigated by comparing temporal patterns of gene transcription between axolotl and tiger salamander larvae (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum) that typically undergo a metamorphosis. Results Transcript abundances from whole brain and pituitary were estimated via microarray analysis on four different days post hatching (42, 56, 70, 84 dph) and regression modeling was used to independently identify genes that were differentially expressed as a function of time in both species. Collectively, more differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified as unique to the axolotl (n = 76) and tiger salamander (n = 292) than were identified as shared (n = 108). All but two of the shared DEGs exhibited the same temporal pattern of expression and the unique genes tended to show greater changes later in the larval period when tiger salamander larvae were undergoing anatomical metamorphosis. A second, complementary analysis that directly compared the expression of 1320 genes between the species identified 409 genes that differed as a function of species or the interaction between time and species. Of these 409 DEGs, 84% exhibited higher abundances in tiger salamander larvae at all sampling times. Conclusions Many of the unique tiger salamander transcriptional responses are probably associated with metamorphic biological processes. However, the axolotl also showed unique patterns of transcription early in development. In particular, the axolotl showed a genome-wide reduction in mRNA abundance

  12. Microarray analysis of a salamander hopeful monster reveals transcriptional signatures of paedomorphic brain development

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    Putta Srikrishna

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum is considered a hopeful monster because it exhibits an adaptive and derived mode of development - paedomorphosis - that has evolved rapidly and independently among tiger salamanders. Unlike related tiger salamanders that undergo metamorphosis, axolotls retain larval morphological traits into adulthood and thus present an adult body plan that differs dramatically from the ancestral (metamorphic form. The basis of paedomorphic development was investigated by comparing temporal patterns of gene transcription between axolotl and tiger salamander larvae (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum that typically undergo a metamorphosis. Results Transcript abundances from whole brain and pituitary were estimated via microarray analysis on four different days post hatching (42, 56, 70, 84 dph and regression modeling was used to independently identify genes that were differentially expressed as a function of time in both species. Collectively, more differentially expressed genes (DEGs were identified as unique to the axolotl (n = 76 and tiger salamander (n = 292 than were identified as shared (n = 108. All but two of the shared DEGs exhibited the same temporal pattern of expression and the unique genes tended to show greater changes later in the larval period when tiger salamander larvae were undergoing anatomical metamorphosis. A second, complementary analysis that directly compared the expression of 1320 genes between the species identified 409 genes that differed as a function of species or the interaction between time and species. Of these 409 DEGs, 84% exhibited higher abundances in tiger salamander larvae at all sampling times. Conclusions Many of the unique tiger salamander transcriptional responses are probably associated with metamorphic biological processes. However, the axolotl also showed unique patterns of transcription early in development. In particular, the axolotl showed a genome

  13. Low levels of LTR retrotransposon deletion by ectopic recombination in the gigantic genomes of salamanders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frahry, Matthew Blake; Sun, Cheng; Chong, Rebecca A; Mueller, Rachel Lockridge

    2015-02-01

    Across the tree of life, species vary dramatically in nuclear genome size. Mutations that add or remove sequences from genomes-insertions or deletions, or indels-are the ultimate source of this variation. Differences in the tempo and mode of insertion and deletion across taxa have been proposed to contribute to evolutionary diversity in genome size. Among vertebrates, most of the largest genomes are found within the salamanders, an amphibian clade with genome sizes ranging from ~14 to ~120 Gb. Salamander genomes have been shown to experience slower rates of DNA loss through small (i.e., genomes. However, no studies have addressed DNA loss from salamander genomes resulting from larger deletions. Here, we focus on one type of large deletion-ectopic-recombination-mediated removal of LTR retrotransposon sequences. In ectopic recombination, double-strand breaks are repaired using a "wrong" (i.e., ectopic, or non-allelic) template sequence-typically another locus of similar sequence. When breaks occur within the LTR portions of LTR retrotransposons, ectopic-recombination-mediated repair can produce deletions that remove the internal transposon sequence and the equivalent of one of the two LTR sequences. These deletions leave a signature in the genome-a solo LTR sequence. We compared levels of solo LTRs in the genomes of four salamander species with levels present in five vertebrates with smaller genomes. Our results demonstrate that salamanders have low levels of solo LTRs, suggesting that ectopic-recombination-mediated deletion of LTR retrotransposons occurs more slowly than in other vertebrates with smaller genomes.

  14. Movement, demographics, and occupancy dynamics of a federally-threatened salamander: evaluating the adequacy of critical habitat

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    Nathan F. Bendik

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Critical habitat for many species is often limited to occupied localities. For rare and cryptic species, or those lacking sufficient data, occupied habitats may go unrecognized, potentially hindering species recovery. Proposed critical habitat for the aquatic Jollyville Plateau salamander (Eurycea tonkawae and two sister species were delineated based on the assumption that surface habitat is restricted to springs and excludes intervening stream reaches. To test this assumption, we performed two studies to understand aspects of individual, population, and metapopulation ecology of E. tonkawae. First, we examined movement and population demographics using capture-recapture along a spring-influenced stream reach. We then extended our investigation of stream habitat use with a study of occupancy and habitat dynamics in multiple headwater streams. Indications of extensive stream channel use based on capture-recapture results included frequent movements of >15 m, and high juvenile abundance downstream of the spring. Initial occupancy of E. tonkawae was associated with shallow depths, maidenhair fern presence and low temperature variation (indicative of groundwater influence, although many occupied sites were far from known springs. Additionally, previously dry sites were three times more likely to be colonized than wet sites. Our results indicate extensive use of stream habitats, including intermittent ones, by E. tonkawae. These areas may be important for maintaining population connectivity or even as primary habitat patches. Restricting critical habitat to occupied sites will result in a mismatch with actual habitat use, particularly when assumptions of habitat use are untested, thus limiting the potential for recovery.

  15. Microsatellite Loci for Orthophytum ophiuroides (Bromelioideae, Bromeliaceae Species Adapted to Neotropical Rock Outcrops

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    Felipe Aoki-Gonçalves

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Premise of the study: Microsatellite primers were developed for Orthophytum ophiuroides, a rupicolous bromeliad species endemic to neotropical rocky fields. These microsatellite loci will be used to investigate population differentiation and species cohesion in such fragmented environments. The loci were tested for cross-amplification in related bromeliad species. Methods and Results: Eleven polymorphic microsatellite markers were isolated and characterized from an enriched library of O. ophiuroides. The loci were tested on 42 individuals from two populations of this species. The number of alleles per locus ranged from three to nine and the expected and observed heterozygosities ranged from 0.167 to 0.870 and from 0.369 to 0.958, respectively. Seven loci successfully amplified in other related bromeliad species. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the microsatellite loci developed here will be useful to assess genetic diversity and gene flow in O. ophiuroides for the investigation of population differentiation and species cohesion in neotropical mountainous habitats.

  16. 76 FR 44036 - Proposed Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the California Tiger Salamander, AT&T Portable...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-22

    ... developed portion of the AT&T facility on October 25 and 29, 2010. In addition, several salamander larvae... were rejected due to the presence of other Federally listed species, including vernal pool fairy shrimp...

  17. 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...

  18. Vaccination with Recombinant Baculovirus Expressing Ranavirus Major Capsid Protein Induces Protective Immunity in Chinese Giant Salamander, Andrias davidianus

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    Xiaoyuan Zhou

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese giant salamander iridovirus (CGSIV, belonging to the genus Ranavirus in the family Iridoviridae, is the causative agent of an emerging infectious disease causing high mortality of more than 90% and economic losses in Chinese giant salamanders in China. In this study, a recombinant baculovirus-based vaccine expressing the CGSIV major capsid protein (MCP was developed and its protective immunity in Chinese giant salamanders was evaluated. The recombinant Autographa californica nucleopolyhedrosis virus (AcNPV, expressing CGSIV MCP, designated as AcNPV-MCP, was generated with the highest titers of 1 × 108 plaque forming units/mL (PFU/mL and confirmed by Western blot and indirect immunofluorescence (IIF assays. Western blot analysis revealed that the expressed MCP reacted with mouse anti-MCP monoclonal antibodies at the band of about 53 kDa. The results of IIF indicated that the MCP was expressed in the infected Spodoptera frugiperda 9 (Sf9 cells with the recombinant baculovirus, and the Chinese giant salamander muscle cells also transduced with the AcNPV-MCP. Immunization with the recombinant baculovirus of AcNPV-MCP elicited robust specific humoral immune responses detected by ELISA and neutralization assays and potent cellular immune responses in Chinese giant salamanders. Importantly, the effective immunization conferred highly protective immunity for Chinese giant salamanders against CGSIV challenge and produced a relative percent of survival rate of 84%. Thus, the recombinant baculovirus expressing CGSIV MCP can induce significant immune responses involving both humoral and cell-mediated immunity in Chinese giant salamanders and might represent a potential baculovirus based vaccine candidate for Chinese giant salamanders against CGSIV.

  19. Diversification in the northern neotropics: mitochondrial and nuclear DNA phylogeography of the iguana Ctenosaura pectinata and related species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarza, Eugenia; Reynoso, Victor H; Emerson, Brent C

    2008-07-01

    While Quaternary climatic changes are considered by some to have been a major factor promoting speciation within the neotropics, others suggest that much of the neotropical species diversity originated before the Pleistocene. Using mitochondrial and nuclear sequence data, we evaluate the relative importance of Pleistocene and pre-Pleistocene events within the evolutionary history of the Mexican iguana Ctenosaura pectinata, and related species. Results support the existence of cryptic lineages with strong mitochondrial divergence (> 4%) among them. Some of these lineages form zones of secondary contact, with one of them hybridizing with C. hemilopha. Evolutionary network analyses reveal the oldest populations of C. pectinata to be those of the northern and southern Mexican coastal regions. Inland and mid-latitudinal coastal populations are younger in age as a consequence of a history of local extinction within these regions followed by re-colonization. Estimated divergence times suggest that C. pectinata originated during the Pliocene, whereas geographically distinct mitochondrial DNA lineages first started to diverge during the Pliocene, with subsequent divergence continuing through the Pleistocene. Our results highlight the influence of both Pliocene and Pleistocene events in shaping the geographical distribution of genetic variation within neotropical lowland organisms. Areas of high genetic diversity in southern Mexico were detected, this finding plus the high levels of genetic diversity within C. pectinata, have implications for the conservation of this threatened species.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Molecular data reveal complex hybridization and a cryptic species of neotropical wild cat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trigo, Tatiane C; Schneider, Alexsandra; de Oliveira, Tadeu G; Lehugeur, Livia M; Silveira, Leandro; Freitas, Thales R O; Eizirik, Eduardo

    2013-12-16

    Hybridization among animal species has recently become more recognized as an important phenomenon, especially in the context of recent radiations. Here we show that complex hybridization has led to contrasting patterns of genomic composition among closely related species of the Neotropical cat genus Leopardus. We show strong evidence of ancient hybridization and introgression between the pampas cat (L. colocolo) and northeastern populations of tigrina (L. tigrinus), leading to remarkable cytonuclear discordance in the latter. In contrast, southern tigrina populations show recent and continuing hybridization with Geoffroy's cat (L. geoffroyi), leading to extreme levels of interspecific admixture at their contact zone. Finally, we demonstrate that two seemingly continuous Brazilian tigrina populations show no evidence of ongoing gene flow between them, leading us to support their formal recognition as distinct species, namely L. tigrinus in the northeast and L. guttulus in the south. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  5. Climate-mediated competition in a high-elevation salamander community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dallalio, Eric A.; Brand, Adrianne B,; Grant, Evan H. Campbell

    2017-01-01

    The distribution of the federally endangered Shenandoah Salamander (Plethodon shenandoah) is presumed to be limited by competition with the Red-backed Salamander (Plethodon cinereus). In particular, the current distribution of P. shenandoah is understood to be restricted to warmer and drier habitats because of interspecific interactions. These habitats may be particularly sensitive to climate change, though the influence of competition may also be affected by temperature and relative humidity. We investigated the response of P. shenandoah to competition with P. cinereus under four climate scenarios in 3-dimensional mesocosms. The results suggest that, although climate change may alleviate competitive pressure from P. cinereus, warmer temperatures may also significantly influence the persistence of the species across its known range.

  6. 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.

  7. A little bit is better than nothing: the incomplete parthenogenesis of salamanders, frogs and fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schartl Manfred

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A re-examination of the mitochondrial genomes of unisexual salamander lineages, published in BMC Evolutionary Biology, shows them to be the oldest unisexual vertebrates known, having been around for 5 million years. This presents a challenge to the prediction that lack of genetic recombination is a fast track to extinction. See research article http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/10/238

  8. Efficacy of chemical disinfectants for the containment of the salamander chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans

    OpenAIRE

    Van Rooij, Pascale; Pasmans, Frank; Coen, Yanaïka; Martel, An

    2017-01-01

    The recently emerged chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) causes European salamander declines. Proper hygiene protocols including disinfection procedures are crucial to prevent disease transmission. Here, the efficacy of chemical disinfectants in killing Bsal was evaluated. At all tested conditions, Biocidal (R), Chloramine-T (R), Dettol medical (R), Disolol (R), ethanol, F10 (R), Hibiscrub (R), potassium permanganate, Safe4 (R), sodium hypochlorite, and Virkon S (R), were ...

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

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    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

  10. 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

  11. Effect of thermal acclimation on locomotor energetics and locomotor performance in a lungless salamander, Desmognathus ochrophaeus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feder, M E

    1986-03-01

    To determine the effects of thermal acclimation upon locomotor performance and the rate of oxygen consumption (MO2) during activity, small (less than 3 g), lungless salamanders, Desmognathus ochrophaeus Cope, were acclimated to three temperatures (5, 13 and 21 degrees C) and exercised at various controlled speeds within an exercise wheel while their MO2 was measured. MO2 increased with speed at low speeds (less than 14 cm min-1). Although animals could sustain greater speeds, MO2 did not increase further. These small, exclusively skin-breathing salamanders could increase their MO2 9-11 times during exercise and could sustain nearly half of the oxygen flux expected across a similar surface area of the mammalian lung. However, their maximum aerobic speed was remarkably slow (14 cm min-1) and their net cost of transport remarkably large (15-17 ml O2 g-1 km-1). Thermal acclimation affected MO2 during activity, the maximum sustainable speed and locomotor stamina in different ways. During exercise at 13 degrees C, cold-acclimated animals had a significantly greater MO2 than warm-acclimated animals, but did not differ in stamina or the maximum sustainable speed. During exercise at 21 degrees C, cold acclimation did not affect the MO2 significantly, but it decreased the stamina and increased the rate of lactate accumulation. Thus, these results suggest that thermal acclimation of the MO2 is not tightly coupled to thermal acclimation of locomotor performance in salamanders.

  12. Data set for transcriptome analysis of the Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus

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    Xuemei Jiang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus occupies a seat at the phylogenetic and species evolution process, which makes it an invaluable model for genetics; however, the genetic information and gene sequences about the Chinese giant salamander in public databases are scanty. Hence, we aimed to perform transcriptome analysis with the help of high-throughput sequencing. In this data, 61,317,940 raw reads were acquired from Chinese giant salamander mRNA using Illumina paired-end sequencing platform. After de novo assembly, a total of 72,072 unigenes were gained, in which 33,834 (46.95% and 29,479 (40.91% transcripts exhibited homology to sequences in the Nr database and Swiss-Prot database, (E-value <10−5, respectively. In the obtained unigenes, 18,019 (25% transcripts were assigned with at least one Gene Ontology term, of which 1218 (6.8% transcripts were assigned to immune system processes. In addition, a total of 17,572 assembled sequences were assigned into 241 predicted KEGG metabolic pathways. Among these, 2552 (14.5% transcripts were assigned to the immune system relevant pathway and 5 transcripts were identified as potential antimicrobial peptides (AMPs. Keywords: Andrias davidianus, Transcriptome

  13. Genic regions of a large salamander genome contain long introns and novel genes

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    Bryant Susan V

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The basis of genome size variation remains an outstanding question because DNA sequence data are lacking for organisms with large genomes. Sixteen BAC clones from the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum: c-value = 32 × 109 bp were isolated and sequenced to characterize the structure of genic regions. Results Annotation of genes within BACs showed that axolotl introns are on average 10× longer than orthologous vertebrate introns and they are predicted to contain more functional elements, including miRNAs and snoRNAs. Loci were discovered within BACs for two novel EST transcripts that are differentially expressed during spinal cord regeneration and skin metamorphosis. Unexpectedly, a third novel gene was also discovered while manually annotating BACs. Analysis of human-axolotl protein-coding sequences suggests there are 2% more lineage specific genes in the axolotl genome than the human genome, but the great majority (86% of genes between axolotl and human are predicted to be 1:1 orthologs. Considering that axolotl genes are on average 5× larger than human genes, the genic component of the salamander genome is estimated to be incredibly large, approximately 2.8 gigabases! Conclusion This study shows that a large salamander genome has a correspondingly large genic component, primarily because genes have incredibly long introns. These intronic sequences may harbor novel coding and non-coding sequences that regulate biological processes that are unique to salamanders.

  14. Vocal ontogeny in neotropical singing mice (Scotinomys.

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    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

  15. 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

  16. Effects of microhabitat and large-scale land use on stream salamander occupancy in the coalfields of Central Appalachia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeten, Sara E.; Ford, W. Mark

    2016-01-01

    Large-scale coal mining practices, particularly surface coal extraction and associated valley fills as well as residential wastewater discharge, are of ecological concern for aquatic systems in central Appalachia. Identifying and quantifying alterations to ecosystems along a gradient of spatial scales is a necessary first-step to aid in mitigation of negative consequences to aquatic biota. In central Appalachian headwater streams, apart from fish, salamanders are the most abundant vertebrate predator that provide a significant intermediate trophic role linking aquatic and terrestrial food webs. Stream salamander species are considered to be sensitive to aquatic stressors and environmental alterations, as past research has shown linkages among microhabitat parameters, large-scale land use such as urbanization and logging, and salamander abundances. However, there is little information examining these relationships between environmental conditions and salamander occupancy in the coalfields of central Appalachia. In the summer of 2013, 70 sites (sampled two to three times each) in the southwest Virginia coalfields were visited to collect salamanders and quantify stream and riparian microhabitat parameters. Using an information-theoretic framework, effects of microhabitat and large-scale land use on stream salamander occupancy were compared. The findings indicate that Desmognathus spp. occupancy rates are more correlated to microhabitat parameters such as canopy cover than to large-scale land uses. However, Eurycea spp. occupancy rates had a strong association with large-scale land uses, particularly recent mining and forest cover within the watershed. These findings suggest that protection of riparian habitats is an important consideration for maintaining aquatic systems in central Appalachia. If this is not possible, restoration riparian areas should follow guidelines using quick-growing tree species that are native to Appalachian riparian areas. These types of trees

  17. The effects of simulated solar UVB radiation on early developmental stages of the Northwestern Salamander (Ambystoma gracile) from three lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calfee, Robin D.; Little, Edward E.; Pearl, Christopher A.; Hoffman, Robert L.

    2010-01-01

    Solar ultraviolet radiation (UV) has received much attention as a factor that could play a role in amphibian population declines. UV can be hazardous to some amphibians, but the resultant effects depend on a variety of environmental and behavioral factors. In this study, the potential effects of UV on the Northwestern Salamander, Ambystoma gracile, from three lakes were assessed in the laboratory using a solar simulator. We measured the survival of embryos and the survival and growth of larvae exposed to four UV treatments in controlled laboratory studies, the UV absorbance of egg jelly, oviposition depths in the lakes, and UV absorbance in water samples from the three lakes. Hatching success of embryos decreased in the higher UV treatments as compared to the control treatments, and growth of surviving larvae was significantly reduced in the higher UVB irradiance treatments. The egg jelly exhibited a small peak of absorbance within the UVB range (290–320 nm). The magnitude of UV absorbance differed among egg jellies from the three lakes. Oviposition depths at the three sites averaged 1.10 m below the water surface. Approximately 66% of surface UVB radiation was attenuated at 10-cm depth in all three lakes. Results of this study indicate that larvae may be sensitive to UVB exposure under laboratory conditions; however, in field conditions the depths of egg deposition in the lakes, absorbance of UV radiation by the water column, and the potential for behavioral adjustments may mitigate severe effects of UV radiation.

  18. Evaluation of microorganisms cultured from injured and repressed tissue regeneration sites in endangered giant aquatic Ozark Hellbender salamanders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheryl A Nickerson

    cultured from a Cryptobranchid salamander. The incidence of abnormalities/injury and retarded regeneration in C. a. bishopi may have many contributing factors including disease and habitat degradation. Results from this study may provide insight into other amphibian population declines.

  19. Phylogenomics and species delimitation of a complex radiation of Neotropical suboscine birds (Pachyramphus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musher, Lukas J; Cracraft, Joel

    2018-01-01

    Phylogeographic studies within the Neotropics continue to uncover hidden diversity, the extent of which remains poorly known. In birds, molecular studies are producing evidence that species-level diversity is substantially underestimated. Many avian taxa comprise large complexes of subspecies that often represent species-level taxa by various criteria. One such group of Neotropical suboscine birds, the becards (Pachyramphus), ranges from Argentina through northern Mexico. Their taxonomic limits have been complex and controversial as the genus has bounced around a number of suboscine families. Additionally, the phylogenetic relationships within Pachyramphus are unresolved due to insufficient sampling of taxa and populations across species' ranges. We used target capture of ultraconserved elements for 62 individuals representing 42 taxa, and sequenced two mitochondrial genes and two nuclear introns covering 265 individuals of 51 taxa, including all recognized species, resulting in the most densely and completely sampled phylogenetic hypothesis for Pachyramphus to date. We delimited species using a traditional taxonomic approach and then tested them under a Bayesian multi-species coalescent framework. In doing so, we provide evidence for multiple young, previously undetected evolutionary lineages within Pachyramphus. Deep, well-supported branches and a high number of intraspecific lineages across the tree suggest that at least 50% of species diversity may be unrecognized. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. DNA fingerprinting validates seed dispersal curves from observational studies in the neotropical legume parkia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heymann, Eckhard W; Lüttmann, Kathrin; Michalczyk, Inga M; Saboya, Pedro Pablo Pinedo; Ziegenhagen, Birgit; Bialozyt, Ronald

    2012-01-01

    Determining the distances over which seeds are dispersed is a crucial component for examining spatial patterns of seed dispersal and their consequences for plant reproductive success and population structure. However, following the fate of individual seeds after removal from the source tree till deposition at a distant place is generally extremely difficult. Here we provide a comparison of observationally and genetically determined seed dispersal distances and dispersal curves in a Neotropical animal-plant system. In a field study on the dispersal of seeds of three Parkia (Fabaceae) species by two Neotropical primate species, Saguinus fuscicollis and Saguinus mystax, in Peruvian Amazonia, we observationally determined dispersal distances. These dispersal distances were then validated through DNA fingerprinting, by matching DNA from the maternally derived seed coat to DNA from potential source trees. We found that dispersal distances are strongly right-skewed, and that distributions obtained through observational and genetic methods and fitted distributions do not differ significantly from each other. Our study showed that seed dispersal distances can be reliably estimated through observational methods when a strict criterion for inclusion of seeds is observed. Furthermore, dispersal distances produced by the two primate species indicated that these primates fulfil one of the criteria for efficient seed dispersers. Finally, our study demonstrated that DNA extraction methods so far employed for temperate plant species can be successfully used for hard-seeded tropical plants.

  1. DNA Fingerprinting Validates Seed Dispersal Curves from Observational Studies in the Neotropical Legume Parkia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heymann, Eckhard W.; Lüttmann, Kathrin; Michalczyk, Inga M.; Saboya, Pedro Pablo Pinedo; Ziegenhagen, Birgit; Bialozyt, Ronald

    2012-01-01

    Background Determining the distances over which seeds are dispersed is a crucial component for examining spatial patterns of seed dispersal and their consequences for plant reproductive success and population structure. However, following the fate of individual seeds after removal from the source tree till deposition at a distant place is generally extremely difficult. Here we provide a comparison of observationally and genetically determined seed dispersal distances and dispersal curves in a Neotropical animal-plant system. Methodology/Principal Findings In a field study on the dispersal of seeds of three Parkia (Fabaceae) species by two Neotropical primate species, Saguinus fuscicollis and Saguinus mystax, in Peruvian Amazonia, we observationally determined dispersal distances. These dispersal distances were then validated through DNA fingerprinting, by matching DNA from the maternally derived seed coat to DNA from potential source trees. We found that dispersal distances are strongly right-skewed, and that distributions obtained through observational and genetic methods and fitted distributions do not differ significantly from each other. Conclusions/Significance Our study showed that seed dispersal distances can be reliably estimated through observational methods when a strict criterion for inclusion of seeds is observed. Furthermore, dispersal distances produced by the two primate species indicated that these primates fulfil one of the criteria for efficient seed dispersers. Finally, our study demonstrated that DNA extraction methods so far employed for temperate plant species can be successfully used for hard-seeded tropical plants. PMID:22514748

  2. 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...

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. 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...

  10. 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...

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. Transcriptional and phylogenetic analysis of five complete ambystomatid salamander mitochondrial genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuels, Amy K; Weisrock, David W; Smith, Jeramiah J; France, Katherine J; Walker, John A; Putta, Srikrishna; Voss, S Randal

    2005-04-11

    We report on a study that extended mitochondrial transcript information from a recent EST project to obtain complete mitochondrial genome sequence for 5 tiger salamander complex species (Ambystoma mexicanum, A. t. tigrinum, A. andersoni, A. californiense, and A. dumerilii). We describe, for the first time, aspects of mitochondrial transcription in a representative amphibian, and then use complete mitochondrial sequence data to examine salamander phylogeny at both deep and shallow levels of evolutionary divergence. The available mitochondrial ESTs for A. mexicanum (N=2481) and A. t. tigrinum (N=1205) provided 92% and 87% coverage of the mitochondrial genome, respectively. Complete mitochondrial sequences for all species were rapidly obtained by using long distance PCR and DNA sequencing. A number of genome structural characteristics (base pair length, base composition, gene number, gene boundaries, codon usage) were highly similar among all species and to other distantly related salamanders. Overall, mitochondrial transcription in Ambystoma approximated the pattern observed in other vertebrates. We inferred from the mapping of ESTs onto mtDNA that transcription occurs from both heavy and light strand promoters and continues around the entire length of the mtDNA, followed by post-transcriptional processing. However, the observation of many short transcripts corresponding to rRNA genes indicates that transcription may often terminate prematurely to bias transcription of rRNA genes; indeed an rRNA transcription termination signal sequence was observed immediately following the 16S rRNA gene. Phylogenetic analyses of salamander family relationships consistently grouped Ambystomatidae in a clade containing Cryptobranchidae and Hynobiidae, to the exclusion of Salamandridae. This robust result suggests a novel alternative hypothesis because previous studies have consistently identified Ambystomatidae and Salamandridae as closely related taxa. Phylogenetic analyses of tiger

  14. Physical condition, sex, and age-class of eastern red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) in forested and open habitats of West Virginia, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breanna L. Riedel; Kevin R. Russell; W. Mark Ford

    2012-01-01

    Nonforested habitats such as open fields and pastures have been considered unsuitable for desiccation-prone woodland salamanders such as the Eastern Red-backed Salamander (Plethodon cinereus). Recent research has suggested that Plethodon cinereus may not only disperse across but also reside within open habitats including fields,...

  15. Toxicological responses of red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) to subchronic soil exposures of 2,4-dinitrotoluene

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, Mark S.; Suski, Jamie; Bazar, Matthew A.

    2007-01-01

    Dinitrotoluenes are used as propellants and in explosives by the military and as such have been found at relatively high concentrations in the soil. To determine whether concentrations of 2,4-dinitrotoluene (2,4-DNT) in soil are toxic to amphibians, 100 red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) were exposed to either 1500, 800, 200, 75 or 0 mg 2,4-DNT/kg soil for 28 days and evaluated for indicators of toxicity. Concentrations of 2,4-DNT were less than targets and varied with time. Most salamanders exposed to concentrations exceeding 1050 mg/kg died or were moribund within the first week. Salamanders exposed to soil concentrations exceeding 345 mg/kg lost >6% of their body mass though no mortality occurred. Overt effects included a reduction in feed consumption and an increase in bucco-pharyngeal oscillations in salamanders. These results suggest that only high soil concentrations of 2,4-DNT have the potential to cause overtly toxic effects in terrestrial salamanders. - Exposures of 2,4-dinitrotoluene in soil exceeding 345 mg/kg causes toxicity to P. cinereus

  16. Multilocus Phylogeography and Species Delimitation in the Cumberland Plateau Salamander, Plethodon kentucki: Incongruence among Data Sets and Methods.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shawn R Kuchta

    Full Text Available Species are a fundamental unit of biodiversity, yet can be challenging to delimit objectively. This is particularly true of species complexes characterized by high levels of population genetic structure, hybridization between genetic groups, isolation by distance, and limited phenotypic variation. Previous work on the Cumberland Plateau Salamander, Plethodon kentucki, suggested that it might constitute a species complex despite occupying a relatively small geographic range. To examine this hypothesis, we sampled 135 individuals from 43 populations, and used four mitochondrial loci and five nuclear loci (5693 base pairs to quantify phylogeographic structure and probe for cryptic species diversity. Rates of evolution for each locus were inferred using the multidistribute package, and time calibrated gene trees and species trees were inferred using BEAST 2 and *BEAST 2, respectively. Because the parameter space relevant for species delimitation is large and complex, and all methods make simplifying assumptions that may lead them to fail, we conducted an array of analyses. Our assumption was that strongly supported species would be congruent across methods. Putative species were first delimited using a Bayesian implementation of the GMYC model (bGMYC, Geneland, and Brownie. We then validated these species using the genealogical sorting index and BPP. We found substantial phylogeographic diversity using mtDNA, including four divergent clades and an inferred common ancestor at 14.9 myr (95% HPD: 10.8-19.7 myr. By contrast, this diversity was not corroborated by nuclear sequence data, which exhibited low levels of variation and weak phylogeographic structure. Species trees estimated a far younger root than did the mtDNA data, closer to 1.0 myr old. Mutually exclusive putative species were identified by the different approaches. Possible causes of data set discordance, and the problem of species delimitation in complexes with high levels of population

  17. Propulsive forces of mudskipper fins and salamander limbs during terrestrial locomotion: implications for the invasion of land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawano, Sandy M; Blob, Richard W

    2013-08-01

    The invasion of land was a pivotal event in vertebrate evolution that was associated with major appendicular modifications. Although fossils indicate that the evolution of fundamentally limb-like appendages likely occurred in aquatic environments, the functional consequences of using early digited limbs, rather than fins, for terrestrial propulsion have had little empirical investigation. Paleontological and experimental analyses both have led to the proposal of an early origin of "hind limb-driven" locomotion among tetrapods or their ancestors. However, the retention of a pectoral appendage that had already developed terrestrial adaptations has been proposed for some taxa, and few data are available from extant functional models that can provide a foundation for evaluating the relative contributions of pectoral and pelvic appendages to terrestrial support among early stem tetrapods. To examine these aspects of vertebrate locomotor evolution during the invasion of land, we measured three-dimensional ground reaction forces (GRFs) produced by isolated pectoral fins of mudskipper fishes (Periophthalmus barbarus) during terrestrial crutching, and compared these to isolated walking footfalls by the forelimbs and hind limbs of tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum), a species with subequally-sized limbs that facilitate comparisons to early tetrapods. Pectoral appendages of salamanders and mudskippers exhibited numerous differences in GRFs. Compared with salamander forelimbs, isolated fins of mudskippers bear lower vertical magnitudes of GRFs (as a proportion of body weight), and had GRFs that were oriented more medially. Comparing the salamanders' forelimbs and hind limbs, although the peak net GRF occurs later in stance for the forelimb, both limbs experience nearly identical mediolateral and vertical components of GRF, suggesting comparable contributions to support. Thus, forelimbs could also have played a significant locomotor role among basal tetrapods that had limbs

  18. Reproduction of the salamander Siren intermedia le conte with especial reference to oviducal anatomy and mode of fertilization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sever, David M; Rania, Lisa C; Krenz, John D

    1996-03-01

    Reproduction was studied in a South Carolina population of the paedomorphic salamander Siren intermedia with emphasis on anatomy of the female oviduct. The oviduct forms 67-79% of the snout-vent length in this elongate species and can be divided into three portions. The atrium, 7-13% of oviducal length, is the narrow anteriormost portion, with the ostial opening immediately caudad of the transverse septum. The ampulla, 63-75% of oviducal length, is the highly convoluted, middle portion in which gelatinous coverings are added to the eggs during their passage. Hypertrophy of the oviducal glands in the ampulla causes the ampulla to increase in diameter during the ovipository season. The secretion of the eosinophilic oviducal glands is intensely positive following staining with the periodic acid-Schiff procedure and does not react with alcian blue at pH 2.5. This staining reaction, coupled with the presence of abundant rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi complexes, indicates that the secretion contains a glycoprotein. The ovisac, 16-25% of oviducal length, is the most posterior portion of the oviduct and holds up to 10-11 eggs prior to oviposition. Oviducal glands similar to those in the ampulla are absent in the ovisac. Oviposition in female sirens occurs during February-April in this population, and male spermiation is concurrent. Entire oviducts were sectioned from three females collected during the ovipository season and from two collected prior to the breeding season, and sperm were not found in the oviducts of these specimens. Thus no evidence was found for internal fertilization or sperm storage in the oviducts of sirens. © 1996 Wiley-Liss, Inc. Copyright © 1996 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Dose rate estimation of the Tohoku hynobiid salamander, Hynobius lichenatus, in Fukushima.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuma, Shoichi; Ihara, Sadao; Kawaguchi, Isao; Ishikawa, Takahiro; Watanabe, Yoshito; Kubota, Yoshihisa; Sato, Youji; Takahashi, Hiroyuki; Aono, Tatsuo; Ishii, Nobuyoshi; Soeda, Haruhi; Matsui, Kumi; Une, Yumi; Minamiya, Yukio; Yoshida, Satoshi

    2015-05-01

    The radiological risks to the Tohoku hynobiid salamanders (class Amphibia), Hynobius lichenatus due to the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident were assessed in Fukushima Prefecture, including evacuation areas. Aquatic egg clutches (n = 1 for each sampling date and site; n = 4 in total), overwintering larvae (n = 1-5 for each sampling date and site; n = 17 in total), and terrestrial juveniles or adults (n = 1 or 3 for each sampling date and site; n = 12 in total) of H. lichenatus were collected from the end of April 2011 to April 2013. Environmental media such as litter (n = 1-5 for each sampling date and site; n = 30 in total), soil (n = 1-8 for each sampling date and site; n = 31 in total), water (n = 1 for each sampling date and site; n = 17 in total), and sediment (n = 1 for each sampling date and site; n = 17 in total) were also collected. Activity concentrations of (134)Cs + (137)Cs were 1.9-2800, 0.13-320, and 0.51-220 kBq (dry kg) (-1) in the litter, soil, and sediment samples, respectively, and were 0.31-220 and <0.29-40 kBq (wet kg)(-1) in the adult and larval salamanders, respectively. External and internal absorbed dose rates to H. lichenatus were calculated from these activity concentration data, using the ERICA Assessment Tool methodology. External dose rates were also measured in situ with glass dosimeters. There was agreement within a factor of 2 between the calculated and measured external dose rates. In the most severely contaminated habitat of this salamander, a northern part of Abukuma Mountains, the highest total dose rates were estimated to be 50 and 15 μGy h(-1) for the adults and overwintering larvae, respectively. Growth and survival of H. lichenatus was not affected at a dose rate of up to 490 μGy h(-1) in the previous laboratory chronic gamma-irradiation experiment, and thus growth and survival of this salamander would not be affected, even in the most severely contaminated habitat in Fukushima Prefecture. However, further

  20. Mechanics of lung ventilation in a large aquatic salamander, siren lacertina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brainerd; j

    1998-06-01

    Lung ventilation in Siren lacertina was studied using X-ray video, measurements of body cavity pressure and electromyography of hypaxial muscles. S. lacertina utilizes a two-stroke buccal pump in which mixing of expired and inspired gas is minimized by partial expansion of the buccal cavity during exhalation and then full expansion after exhalation is complete. Mixing is further reduced by the use of one or two accessory inspirations after the first, mixed-gas cycle. Exhalation occurs in two phases: a passive phase in which hydrostatic pressure and possibly lung elasticity force air out of the lungs, and an active phase in which contraction of the transverse abdominis (TA) muscle increases body cavity pressure and forces most of the remaining air out. In electromyograms of the lateral hypaxial musculature, the TA became active 200-400 ms before the rise in body cavity pressure, and activity ceased at peak pressure. The TA was not active during inspiration, and no consistent activity during breathing was noted in the external oblique, internal oblique and rectus abdominis muscles. The finding that the TA is the primary expiratory muscle in S. lacertina agrees with findings in a previous study of another salamander, Necturus maculosus. Together, these results indicate that the use of the TA for exhalation is a primitive character for salamanders and support the hypothesis that the breathing mechanism of salamanders represents an intermediate step in evolution between a buccal pump, in which only head muscles are used for ventilation, and an aspiration pump, in which axial muscles are used for both exhalation and inhalation.

  1. 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.

  2. 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...

  3. 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)...

  4. 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.

  5. Effects of simulated solar UVB radiation on early developmental stages of the northwestern salamander (Ambystoma gracile) from three lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calfee, R.D.; Little, E.E.; Pearl, C.A.; Hoffman, R.L.

    2010-01-01

    Solar ultraviolet radiation (UV) has received much attention as a factor that could play a role in amphibian population declines. UV can be hazardous to some amphibians, but the resultant effects depend on a variety of environmental and behavioral factors. In this study, the potential effects of UV on the Northwestern Salamander, Ambystoma gracile, from three lakes were assessed in the laboratory using a solar simulator. We measured the survival of embryos and the survival and growth of larvae exposed to four UV treatments in controlled laboratory studies, the UV absorbance of egg jelly, oviposition depths in the lakes, and UV absorbance in water samples from the three lakes. Hatching success of embryos decreased in the higher UV treatments as compared to the control treatments, and growth of surviving larvae was significantly reduced in the higher UVB irradiance treatments. The egg jelly exhibited a small peak of absorbance within the UVB range (290-320 nm). The magnitude of UV absorbance differed among egg jellies from the three lakes. Oviposition depths at the three sites averaged 1.10 m below the water surface. Approximately 66 of surface UVB radiation was attenuated at 10-cm depth in all three lakes. Results of this study indicate that larvae may be sensitive to UVB exposure under laboratory conditions; however, in field conditions the depths of egg deposition in the lakes, absorbance of UV radiation by the water column, and the potential for behavioral adjustments may mitigate severe effects of UV radiation. Copyright 2010 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  6. Management and monitoring of the endangered Shenandoah salamander under climate change: Workshop report 10-12 April 2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Wofford, John E.B.; Smith, D.R.; Dennis, J.; Hawkins-Hoffman, C.; Schaberl, J.; Foley, M.; Bogle, M.

    2014-01-01

    Here we report on a structured decision making (SDM) process to identify management strategies to ensure persistence of the federally endangered Shenandoah salamander (Plethodon shenandoah), given that it may be at increased extinction risk under projected climate change. The focus of this report is the second of two SDM workshops; in the first workshop, participants developed a prototype of the decision, including problem frame, management objectives and a suite of potential management strategies, predictive models to inform the decision and link alternatives with the objectives to identify potential solutions, and identified data needs to reduce key uncertainties in the decision. Participants in this second workshop included experts in National Park Service policy at multiple administrative levels, who refined objectives, further evaluated the initial management alternatives, and discussed policy constraints on implementing active management for the species and its high-elevation habitat. The conclusion of the second workshop was similar to that of the first: the current state of information and objectives suggest that there is some value in considering active management to reduce the long-term extinction risk for the species, though there are institutional conservative policies to implementing active management at range-wide scales. The workshop participants also emphasized a conservative NPS management philosophy, including caution in implementing management actions that may ultimately harm the system, a stated assumption that ecosystem changes were “natural” unless demonstrated otherwise (therefore not warranting active management to mitigate), and a need to demonstrate that extinction risk is tied to anthropogenic influence prior to taking active management to mitigate specific anthropogenic influences. Even within a protected area having minimal human disturbance, intertwined environmental variables and interspecific relationships that drive population

  7. Estimating occurrence and detection probabilities for stream-breeding salamanders in the Gulf Coastal Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamb, Jennifer Y.; Waddle, J. Hardin; Qualls, Carl P.

    2017-01-01

    Large gaps exist in our knowledge of the ecology of stream-breeding plethodontid salamanders in the Gulf Coastal Plain. Data describing where these salamanders are likely to occur along environmental gradients, as well as their likelihood of detection, are important for the prevention and management of amphibian declines. We used presence/absence data from leaf litter bag surveys and a hierarchical Bayesian multispecies single-season occupancy model to estimate the occurrence of five species of plethodontids across reaches in headwater streams in the Gulf Coastal Plain. Average detection probabilities were high (range = 0.432–0.942) and unaffected by sampling covariates specific to the use of litter bags (i.e., bag submergence, sampling season, in-stream cover). Estimates of occurrence probabilities differed substantially between species (range = 0.092–0.703) and were influenced by the size of the upstream drainage area and by the maximum proportion of the reach that dried. The effects of these two factors were not equivalent across species. Our results demonstrate that hierarchical multispecies models successfully estimate occurrence parameters for both rare and common stream-breeding plethodontids. The resulting models clarify how species are distributed within stream networks, and they provide baseline values that will be useful in evaluating the conservation statuses of plethodontid species within lotic systems in the Gulf Coastal Plain.

  8. Cutaneous mastocytomas in the neotenic caudate amphibians Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) and Ambystoma tigrinun (tiger salamander)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harshbarger, J.C.; Chang, S.C.; DeLanney, L.E.; Rose, F.L.; Green, D.E.

    1999-01-01

    Spontaneous mastocytomas studied in 18 axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) and six tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) were gray-white, uni- to multilobular cutaneous protrusions from 2mm to 2cm in diameter. Tumors were moderately cellular unencapsulated masses that usually infiltrated the dermis and hypodermis with the destruction of intervening tissues. Some tumors were invading superficial bundles of the underlying skeletal muscle. Tumors consisted of mitotically active cells derived from a single lineage but showing a range of differentiation. Immature cells had nearly smooth to lightly cleft or folded basophilic nuclei bordered by a band of cytoplasm with few cytoplasmic processes and containing a few small uniform eccentric granules. Mature cells had basophilic nuclei with deep clefts or folds and abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm with multiple long intertwining cytoplasmic extensions packed with metachromatic granules. The axolotls were old individuals from an inbred laboratory colony. The tiger salamanders were wild animals from a single polluted pond. They could have been old and inbred. Both groups were neotenic. These are the first mastocytomas discovered in cold-blooded animals.

  9. The trophic role of a forest salamander: impacts on invertebrates, leaf litter retention, and the humification process

    Science.gov (United States)

    M. L. Best; H. H. Welsh

    2014-01-01

    Woodland (Plethodontid) salamanders are the most abundant vertebrates in North American forests, functioning as predators on invertebrates and prey for higher trophic levels. We investigated the role of Ensatina (Ensatina eschscholtzii) in regulating invertebrate numbers and leaf litter retention in a northern California forest. Our objective was...

  10. Response of stream-breeding salamander larvae to sediment deposition in southern Appalachian (U.S.A.) headwater streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    S. Conner Keitzer; Reuben. Goforth

    2012-01-01

    Summary 1. Increased fine sediment deposition is a prevalent threat to stream biodiversity and has been shown to impact stream-breeding salamanders negatively. However, their complex life histories make it difficult to determine which stage is affected. 2. We conducted field experiments from 26 August to 11 September 2010 and 11 October to 11...

  11. 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

  12. Life-history variation of a neotropical thrush challenges food limitation theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferretti, V.; Llambias, P.E.; Martin, T.E.

    2005-01-01

    Since David Lack first proposed that birds rear as many young as they can nourish, food limitation has been accepted as the primary explanation for variation in clutch size and other life-history traits in birds. The importance of food limitation in life-history variation, however, was recently questioned on theoretical grounds. Here, we show that clutch size differences between two populations of a neotropical thrush were contrary to expectations under Lack's food limitation hypothesis. Larger clutch sizes were found in a population with higher nestling starvation rate (i.e. greater food limitation). We experimentally equalized clutches between populations to verify this difference in food limitation. Our experiment confirmed greater food limitation in the population with larger mean clutch size. In addition, incubation bout length and nestling growth rate were also contrary to predictions of food limitation theory. Our results demonstrate the inability of food limitation to explain differences in several life-history traits: clutch size, incubation behaviour, parental feeding rate and nestling growth rate. These life-history traits were better explained by inter-population differences in nest predation rates. Food limitation may be less important to life history evolution in birds than suggested by traditional theory. ?? 2005 The Royal Society.

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. 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....

  16. Landscape Use and Co-Occurrence Patterns of Neotropical Spotted Cats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy-Reis, Mariana B.; Nichols, James D.; Chiarello, Adriano G.; Ribeiro, Milton Cezar; Setz, Eleonore Z. F.

    2017-01-01

    Small felids influence ecosystem dynamics through prey and plant population changes. Although most of these species are threatened, they are accorded one of the lowest research efforts of all felids, and we lack basic information about them. Many felids occur in sympatry, where intraguild competition is frequent. Therefore, assessing the role of interspecific interactions along with the relative importance of landscape characteristics is necessary to understand how these species co-occur in space. Here, we selected three morphologically similar and closely related species of small Neotropical cats to evaluate the roles of interspecific interactions, geomorphometry, environmental, and anthropogenic landscape characteristics on their habitat use. We collected data with camera trapping and scat sampling in a large protected Atlantic forest remnant (35,000 ha). Throughout occupancy modeling we investigated whether these species occur together more or less frequently than would be expected by chance, while dealing with imperfect detection and incorporating possible habitat preferences into the models. We used occupancy as a measure of their habitat use. Although intraguild competition can be an important determinant of carnivore assemblages, in our system, we did not find evidence that one species affects the habitat use of the other. Evidence suggested that proximity to the nature reserve (a more protected area) was a more important driver of Neotropical spotted cats’ occurrence than interspecific interactions or geomorphometry and environmental landscape characteristics—even though our entire study area is under some type of protection. This suggests that small felids can be sensitive to the area protection status, emphasizing the importance of maintaining and creating reserves and other areas with elevated protection for the proper management and conservation of the group. PMID:28052073

  17. The effects of soils and soil stay on the egg morphology of Neotropical Eulimnadia (Branchiopoda: Limnadiidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Rabet

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Studying the species distribution of Limnadiidae, a family of crustaceans, in environments favourable to their growth and reproduction is made difficult by their extremely short life cycle and the transient existence of adult forms. However, the eggs of these branchiopods are highly resistant to environmental extremes and persist in the soil of humidified and dried pools. We therefore studied the capacity to detect populations of Limnadiidae and identify them at the species level using egg morphology. We investigated influences of pool sediments on Eulimnadia (clam shrimp egg morphology and asked whether we could rely on this morphology after various lengths of time in the soil to recognise species. We studied sediment collected from temporary pools in four Neotropical areas: Minas Gerais and Bahia (Brazil, French Guiana, and Martinique. These samples represented diverse geographical regions and climates and allowed us to study the four most widely distributed Eulimnadia species in the Neotropics: E. colombiensis, E. cylindrova, E. geayi, and E. magdalensis. Our results indicated that soil abrasion is superficial and does not affect the general shape of the eggs (cylindrical or spherical. However, details of egg ornamentation can be severely affected by the combined effects of erosion and filling with sediments, which can lead to difficulties in species identification. In the particular case of the spherical eggs of E. magdalensis, this species cannot be unequivocally identified without clean eggs collected from adults after breeding or from eggs recently deposited in the field. This work and the investigative methods described herein should facilitate identification of Eulimnadia species and promote further study of Limnadiidae crustaceans in the field.

  18. Underestimation of species richness in neotropical frogs revealed by mtDNA analyses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine Fouquet

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Amphibians are rapidly vanishing. At the same time, it is most likely that the number of amphibian species is highly underestimated. Recent DNA barcoding work has attempted to define a threshold between intra- and inter-specific genetic distances to help identify candidate species. In groups with high extinction rates and poorly known species boundaries, like amphibians, such tools may provide a way to rapidly evaluate species richness.Here we analyse published and new 16S rDNA sequences from 60 frog species of Amazonia-Guianas to obtain a minimum estimate of the number of undescribed species in this region. We combined isolation by distance, phylogenetic analyses, and comparison of molecular distances to evaluate threshold values for the identification of candidate species among these frogs.In most cases, geographically distant populations belong to genetically highly distinct lineages that could be considered as candidate new species. This was not universal among the taxa studied and thus widespread species of Neotropical frogs really do exist, contrary to previous assumptions. Moreover, the many instances of paraphyly and the wide overlap between distributions of inter- and intra-specific distances reinforce the hypothesis that many cryptic species remain to be described. In our data set, pairwise genetic distances below 0.02 are strongly correlated with geographical distances. This correlation remains statistically significant until genetic distance is 0.05, with no such relation thereafter. This suggests that for higher distances allopatric and sympatric cryptic species prevail. Based on our analyses, we propose a more inclusive pairwise genetic distance of 0.03 between taxa to target lineages that could correspond to candidate species.Using this approach, we identify 129 candidate species, two-fold greater than the 60 species included in the current study. This leads to estimates of around 170 to 460 frog taxa unrecognized in Amazonia

  19. A Review of Neotropical Myxomycetes (1828-2008

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    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

  20. 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. 

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. The Importance of Maintaining Upland Forest Habitat Surrounding Salamander Breeding Ponds: Case Study of the Eastern Tiger Salamander in New York, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valorie Titus

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Most amphibians use both wetland and upland habitats, but the extent of their movement in forested habitats is poorly known. We used radiotelemetry to observe the movements of adult and juvenile eastern tiger salamanders over a 4-year period. Females tended to move farther from the breeding ponds into upland forested habitat than males, while the distance a juvenile moved appeared to be related to body size, with the largest individuals moving as far as the adult females. Individuals chose refugia in native pitch pine—oak forested habitat and avoided open fields, roads, and developed areas. We also observed a difference in potential predation pressures in relation to the distance an individual moved from the edge of the pond. Our results support delineating forested wetland buffer zones on a case-by-case basis to reduce the impacts of concentrated predation, to increase and protect the availability of pitch pine—oak forests near the breeding pond, and to focus primarily on the habitat needs of the adult females and larger juveniles, which in turn will encompass habitat needs of adult males and smaller juveniles.

  4. 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...

  5. Plethodontid salamander mitochondrial genomics: A parsimonyevaluation of character conflict and implications for historicalbiogeography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Macey, J. Robert

    2005-01-19

    A new parsimony analysis of 27 complete mitochondrial genomic sequences is conducted to investigate the phylogenetic relationships of plethodontid salamanders. This analysis focuses on the amount of character conflict between phylogenetic trees recovered from newly conducted parsimony searches and the Bayesian and maximum likelihood topology reported by Mueller et al. (2004, PNAS, 101, 13820-13825). Strong support for Hemidactylium as the sister taxon to all other plethodontids is recovered from parsimony analyses. Plotting area relationships on the most parsimonious phylogenetic tree suggests that eastern North America is the origin of the family Plethodontidae supporting the ''Out of Appalachia'' hypothesis. A new taxonomy that recognizes clades recovered from phylogenetic analyses is proposed.

  6. From biomedicine to natural history research: EST resources for ambystomatid salamanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryant Susan V

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Establishing genomic resources for closely related species will provide comparative insights that are crucial for understanding diversity and variability at multiple levels of biological organization. We developed ESTs for Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum and Eastern tiger salamander (A. tigrinum tigrinum, species with deep and diverse research histories. Results Approximately 40,000 quality cDNA sequences were isolated for these species from various tissues, including regenerating limb and tail. These sequences and an existing set of 16,030 cDNA sequences for A. mexicanum were processed to yield 35,413 and 20,599 high quality ESTs for A. mexicanum and A. t. tigrinum, respectively. Because the A. t. tigrinum ESTs were obtained primarily from a normalized library, an approximately equal number of contigs were obtained for each species, with 21,091 unique contigs identified overall. The 10,592 contigs that showed significant similarity to sequences from the human RefSeq database reflected a diverse array of molecular functions and biological processes, with many corresponding to genes expressed during spinal cord injury in rat and fin regeneration in zebrafish. To demonstrate the utility of these EST resources, we searched databases to identify probes for regeneration research, characterized intra- and interspecific nucleotide polymorphism, saturated a human – Ambystoma synteny group with marker loci, and extended PCR primer sets designed for A. mexicanum / A. t. tigrinum orthologues to a related tiger salamander species. Conclusions Our study highlights the value of developing resources in traditional model systems where the likelihood of information transfer to multiple, closely related taxa is high, thus simultaneously enabling both laboratory and natural history research.

  7. From biomedicine to natural history research: EST resources for ambystomatid salamanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putta, Srikrishna; Smith, Jeramiah J; Walker, John A; Rondet, Mathieu; Weisrock, David W; Monaghan, James; Samuels, Amy K; Kump, Kevin; King, David C; Maness, Nicholas J; Habermann, Bianca; Tanaka, Elly; Bryant, Susan V; Gardiner, David M; Parichy, David M; Voss, S Randal

    2004-01-01

    Background Establishing genomic resources for closely related species will provide comparative insights that are crucial for understanding diversity and variability at multiple levels of biological organization. We developed ESTs for Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) and Eastern tiger salamander (A. tigrinum tigrinum), species with deep and diverse research histories. Results Approximately 40,000 quality cDNA sequences were isolated for these species from various tissues, including regenerating limb and tail. These sequences and an existing set of 16,030 cDNA sequences for A. mexicanum were processed to yield 35,413 and 20,599 high quality ESTs for A. mexicanum and A. t. tigrinum, respectively. Because the A. t. tigrinum ESTs were obtained primarily from a normalized library, an approximately equal number of contigs were obtained for each species, with 21,091 unique contigs identified overall. The 10,592 contigs that showed significant similarity to sequences from the human RefSeq database reflected a diverse array of molecular functions and biological processes, with many corresponding to genes expressed during spinal cord injury in rat and fin regeneration in zebrafish. To demonstrate the utility of these EST resources, we searched databases to identify probes for regeneration research, characterized intra- and interspecific nucleotide polymorphism, saturated a human – Ambystoma synteny group with marker loci, and extended PCR primer sets designed for A. mexicanum / A. t. tigrinum orthologues to a related tiger salamander species. Conclusions Our study highlights the value of developing resources in traditional model systems where the likelihood of information transfer to multiple, closely related taxa is high, thus simultaneously enabling both laboratory and natural history research. PMID:15310388

  8. Retrotransposon long interspersed nucleotide element-1 (LINE-1) is activated during salamander limb regeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Wei; Kuo, Dwight; Nathanson, Jason; Satoh, Akira; Pao, Gerald M.; Yeo, Gene W.; Bryant, Susan V.; Voss, S. Randal; Gardiner, David M.; Hunter, Tony

    2012-01-01

    Salamanders possess an extraordinary capacity for tissue and organ regeneration when compared to mammals. In our effort to characterize the unique transcriptional fingerprint emerging during the early phase of salamander limb regeneration, we identified transcriptional activation of some germline-specific genes within the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) that is indicative of cellular reprogramming of differentiated cells into a germline-like state. In this work, we focus on one of these genes, the long interspersed nucleotide element-1 (LINE-1) retrotransposon, which is usually active in germ cells and silent in most of the somatic tissues in other organisms. LINE-1 was found to be dramatically upregulated during regeneration. In addition, higher genomic LINE-1 content was also detected in the limb regenerate when compared to that before amputation indicating that LINE-1 retrotransposition is indeed active during regeneration. Active LINE-1 retrotransposition has been suggested to have a potentially deleterious impact on genomic integrity. Silencing of activated LINE-1 by small RNAs has been reported to be part of the machinery aiming to maintain genomic integrity. Indeed, we were able to identify putative LINE-1-related piRNAs in the limb blastema. Transposable element-related piRNAs have been identified frequently in the germline in other organisms. Thus, we present here a scenario in which a unique germline-like state is established during axolotl limb regeneration, and the re-activation of LINE-1 may serve as a marker for cellular dedifferentiation in the early-stage of limb regeneration. PMID:22913491

  9. Effects of metamorphosis on the aquatic escape response of the two-lined salamander (Eurycea bislineata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azizi, Emanuel; Landberg, Tobias

    2002-03-01

    Although numerous studies have described the escape kinematics of fishes, little is known about the aquatic escape responses of salamanders. We compare the escape kinematics of larval and adult Eurycea bislineata, the two-lined salamander, to examine the effects of metamorphosis on aquatic escape performance. We hypothesize that shape changes associated with resorption of the larval tail fin at metamorphosis will affect aquatic locomotor performance. Escape responses were recorded using high-speed video, and the effects of life stage and total length on escape kinematics were analyzed statistically using analysis of covariance. Our results show that both larval and adult E. bislineata use a two-stage escape response (similar to the C-starts of fishes) that consists of a preparatory (stage 1) and a propulsive (stage 2) stroke. The duration of both kinematic stages and the distance traveled during stage 2 increased with total length. Both larval and adult E. bislineata had final escape trajectories that were directed away from the stimulus. The main kinematic difference between larvae and adults is that adults exhibit significantly greater maximum curvature during stage 1. Total escape duration and the distance traveled during stage 2 did not differ significantly between larvae and adults. Despite the significantly lower tail aspect ratio of adults, we found no significant decrease in the overall escape performance of adult E. bislineata. Our results suggest that adults may compensate for the decrease in tail aspect ratio by increasing their maximum curvature. These findings do not support the hypothesis that larvae exhibit better locomotor performance than adults as a result of stronger selective pressures on early life stages.

  10. Taxonomy and phenotypic relationships of the Anastrepha fraterculus complex in the Mesoamerican and Pacific Neotropical dominions (Diptera, Tephritidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Ortiz, Vicente; Canal, Nelson A.; Salas, Juan O. Tigrero; Ruíz-Hurtado, Freddy M.; Dzul-Cauich, José F.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Previous morphometric studies based on linear measurements of female structures of the aculeus, mesonotum, and wing revealed the existence of seven morphotypes within the Anastrepha fraterculus cryptic species complex along the Neotropical Region. The current research followed linear and geometric morphometric approaches in 40 population samples of the nominal species Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann) spread throughout the Meso-American and Pacific Neotropical dominions (including Mexico, Central America, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru). The goals were to explore the phenotypic relationships of the morphotypes in these biogeographical areas; evaluate the reliability of procedures used for delimitation of morphotypes; and describe their current distribution. Findings determined that morphotypes previously recognized via the linear morphometrics were also supported by geometric morphometrics of the wing shape. In addition, we found an eighth morphotype inhabiting the highlands of Ecuador and Peru. Morphotypes are related into three natural phenotypic groups nominated as Mesoamerican-Caribbean lineage, Andean lineage, and Brazilian lineage. The hypothesis that lineages are not directly related to each other is discussed, supported by their large morphological divergence and endemicity in these three well-defined biogeographic areas. In addition, this hypothesis of the non-monophyly of the Anastrepha fraterculus complex is also supported by evidence from other authors based on molecular studies and the strong reproductive isolation between morphs from different lineages. PMID:26798256

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

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

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    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.

  14. 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

  15. Neotropical Amphibian Declines Affect Stream Ecosystem Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connelly, S.; Pringle, C. M.; Bixby, R. J.; Whiles, M. R.; Lips, K. R.; Brenes, R.; Colon-Gaud, J. C.; Kilham, S.; Hunte-Brown, M.

    2005-05-01

    Global declines of amphibians are well documented, yet effects of these dramatic losses on ecosystem structure and function are poorly understood. As part of a larger collaborative project, we compared two upland Panamanian streams. Both streams are biologically and geologically similar; however, one stream (Fortuna) has recently experienced almost complete extirpation of stream-dwelling frogs, while the other (Cope) still has intact populations. We experimentally excluded tadpoles from localized areas in each stream. We then compared chlorophyll a, algal community composition, ash-free dry mass (AFDM), inorganic matter, and insect assemblages in control and exclusion areas. Additionally, we sampled the natural substrate of both streams monthly for chlorophyll a, algal community composition, AFDM, and inorganic matter. At Cope, chlorophyll a, AFDM, and inorganic matter were greater in areas where tadpoles were excluded than in their presence. Numbers of dominant algal species (e.g., Nupela praecipua and Eunotia siolii) were greater in the exclusion versus control treatments. Monthly sampling of natural substrate indicated higher chlorophyll a and AFDM at Cope compared to Fortuna. Our data suggest that stream-dwelling anuran larvae have significant impacts on algal communities. These results also have implications for predicting the relevance of short-term experimental manipulations to long-term, whole-stream processes.

  16. Strong spatial structure, Pliocene diversification and cryptic diversity in the Neotropical dry forest spider Sicarius cariri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magalhaes, Ivan L F; Oliveira, Ubirajara; Santos, Fabrício R; Vidigal, Teofânia H D A; Brescovit, Antonio D; Santos, Adalberto J

    2014-11-01

    The Brazilian Caatinga is part of the seasonally dry tropical forests, a vegetation type disjunctly distributed throughout the Neotropics. It has been suggested that during Pleistocene glacial periods, these dry forests had a continuous distribution, so that these climatic shifts may have acted as important driving forces of the Caatinga biota diversification. To address how these events affected the distribution of a dry forest species, we chose Sicarius cariri, a spider endemic to the Caatinga, as a model. We studied the phylogeography of one mitochondrial and one nuclear gene and reconstructed the paleodistribution of the species using modelling algorithms. We found two allopatric and deeply divergent clades within S. cariri, suggesting that this species as currently recognized might consist of more than one independently evolving lineage. Sicarius cariri populations are highly structured, with low haplotype sharing among localities, high fixation index and isolation by distance. Models of paleodistribution, Bayesian reconstructions and coalescent simulations suggest that this species experienced a reduction in its population size during glacial periods, rather than the expansion expected by previous hypotheses on the paleodistribution of dry forest taxa. In addition to that, major splits of intraspecific lineages of S. cariri took place in the Pliocene. Taken together, these results indicate S. cariri has a complex diversification history dating back to the Tertiary, suggesting the history of dry forest taxa may be significantly older than previously thought. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Sensory feedback plays a significant role in generating walking gait and in gait transition in salamanders: A simulation study

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    Nalin eHarischandra

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Here, we use a three-dimensional, neuro-musculo-mechanical model of a salamander with realistic physical parameters in order to investigate the role of sensory feedback in gait generation and transition. Activation of limb and axial muscles were driven by neural output patterns obtained from a central pattern generator (CPG which is composed of simulated spiking neurons with adaptation. The CPG consists of a body CPG and four limb CPGs that are interconnected via synapses both ipsilateraly and contralaterally. We use the model both with and without sensory modulation and for different combinations of ipsilateral and contralateral coupling between the limb CPGs. We found that the proprioceptive sensory inputs are essential in obtaining a coordinated walking gait. The sensory feedback includes the signals coming from the stretch receptor like intraspinal neurons located in the girdle regions and the limb stretch receptors residing in the hip and scapula regions of the salamander. On the other hand, coordinated motor output patterns for the trotting gait were obtainable without the sensory inputs. We found that the gait transition from walking to trotting can be induced by increased activity of the descending drive coming from the mesencephalic locomotor region (MLR and is helped by the sensory inputs at the hip and scapula regions detecting the late stance phase. More neurophysiological experiments are required to identify the precise type of mechanoreceptors in the salamander and the neural mechanisms mediating the sensory modulation.

  18. Microarray analysis identifies keratin loci as sensitive biomarkers for thyroid hormone disruption in the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Robert B; Monaghan, James R; Samuels, Amy K; Smith, Jeramiah J; Beachy, Christopher K; Voss, S Randal

    2007-02-01

    Ambystomatid salamanders offer several advantages for endocrine disruption research, including genomic and bioinformatics resources, an accessible laboratory model (Ambystoma mexicanum), and natural lineages that are broadly distributed among North American habitats. We used microarray analysis to measure the relative abundance of transcripts isolated from A. mexicanum epidermis (skin) after exogenous application of thyroid hormone (TH). Only one gene had a >2-fold change in transcript abundance after 2 days of TH treatment. However, hundreds of genes showed significantly different transcript levels at days 12 and 28 in comparison to day 0. A list of 123 TH-responsive genes was identified using statistical, BLAST, and fold level criteria. Cluster analysis identified two groups of genes with similar transcription patterns: up-regulated versus down-regulated. Most notably, several keratins exhibited dramatic (1000 fold) increases or decreases in transcript abundance. Keratin gene expression changes coincided with morphological remodeling of epithelial tissues. This suggests that keratin loci can be developed as sensitive biomarkers to assay temporal disruptions of larval-to-adult gene expression programs. Our study has identified the first collection of loci that are regulated during TH-induced metamorphosis in a salamander, thus setting the stage for future investigations of TH disruption in the Mexican axolotl and other salamanders of the genus Ambystoma.

  19. Osteological Variation among Extreme Morphological Forms in the Mexican Salamander Genus Chiropterotriton (Amphibia: Plethodontidae: Morphological Evolution And Homoplasy.

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    David M Darda

    Full Text Available Osteological variation is recorded among and within four of the most distinctive species of the Mexican salamander genus Chiropterotriton. Analysis of the data is consistent with the monophyletic status of the genus and documents previously unrecorded intraspecific and interspecific variation. Most of the recorded variation involves qualitative and quantitative proportional differences, but four fixed differences constitute autapomorphic states that affirm and diagnose some species (C. dimidiatus, C. magnipes. Osteological variation in 15 characters is analyzed with respect to predictions generated from four hypotheses: 1 phylogeny, 2 adaptation to specific habitats (the four species include cave-dwelling, terrestrial, and arboreal forms, 3 size-free shape, and 4 size. High levels of intraspecific variation suggest that the characters studied are not subject to rigid functional constraints in salamanders, regardless of size. The pattern predicted by the hypothesis based on size differences seen among these four Chiropterotriton species matches most closely the observed pattern of relative skull robustness. Since size change and heterochrony are often associated in plethodontid evolution, it is likely that changes in developmental timing play a role in the morphological transitions among these morphologically diverse taxa. Webbed feet, miniaturization, body shape, and an unusual tarsal arrangement are morphologies exhibited in species of Chiropterotrition that are shown to be homoplastic with other clades of tropical plethodontids. Although extensive homoplasy in salamanders might be seen as a roadblock to unraveling phylogenetic hypotheses, the homologous developmental systems that appear to underlie such homoplasy may reveal common and consistent evolutionary processes at work.

  20. 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

  1. Effects of chronic γ-irradiation on growth and survival of the Tohoku hynobiid salamander, Hynobius lichenatus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fuma, Shoichi [Project for Environmental Dynamics and Radiation Effects, Fukushima Project Headquarters, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, 4-9-1 Anagawa, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8555 Japan (Japan); Une, Yumi [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Azabu University, 1-17-71 Fuchinobe, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5201 (Japan); Ihara, Sadao [Hokkaido University of Education Kushiro Campus, 1-15-55 Shiroyama, Kushiro, Hokkaido 085-8580 Japan (Japan); Matsui, Kumi [Laboratory of Veterinary Physiology 1, School of Veterinary Medicine, Azabu University, 1-17-71 Fuchinobe, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5201 (Japan); Kudo, Tomoo; Tokiwa, Toshihiro [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Azabu University, 1-17-71 Fuchinobe, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5201 (Japan); Kubota, Yoshihisa; Soeda, Haruhi [Project for Environmental Dynamics and Radiation Effects, Fukushima Project Headquarters, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, 4-9-1 Anagawa, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8555 Japan (Japan); Ishikawa, Takahiro [Department of Technical Support and Development, Research, Development and Support Centre, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, 4-9-1 Anagawa, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8555 Japan (Japan); Doi, Kazutaka [Project for Human Health, Fukushima Project Headquarters, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, 4-9-1 Anagawa, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8555 Japan (Japan); Watanabe, Yoshito; Yoshida, Satoshi [Project for Environmental Dynamics and Radiation Effects, Fukushima Project Headquarters, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, 4-9-1 Anagawa, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8555 Japan (Japan)

    2014-09-15

    The Tohoku hynobiid salamanders, Hynobius lichenatus, were chronically irradiated with γ-rays from embryonic to juvenile stages for 450 days. At 490 μGy h{sup −1} or lower dose rates, growth and survival were not significantly affected by irradiation, and any morphological aberrations and histological damages were not observed. At 4600 μGy h{sup −1}, growth was severely inhibited, and all the individuals died mostly at the juvenile stage. Chronic LD{sub 50} was 42 Gy as a total dose. In the liver, the number of hematopoietic cells was significantly reduced in the living juveniles, and these cells disappeared in the dead juveniles. In the spleen, mature lymphocytes were depleted in the living larvae, and almost all the heamtopoietic cells disappeared in the dead juveniles. These results suggest that this salamander died due to acute radiation syndrome, i.e., hematopoietic damage and subsequent sepsis caused by immune depression. The death would be also attributed to skin damage inducing infection. At 18,000 μGy h{sup −1}, morphological aberrations and severe growth inhibition were observed. All the individuals died at the larval stage due to a multiple organ failure. Chronic LD{sub 50} was 28 Gy as a total dose. Assuming that chronic LD{sub 50} was 42 Gy at lower dose rates than 4600 μGy h{sup −1}, a chronic median lethal dose rate could be estimated to be <340 μGy h{sup −1} for the whole life (>14 years). These results suggest that, among guidance dose rates, i.e., 4–400 μGy h{sup −1}, proposed by various organisations and research programmes for protection of amphibians and taxonomic groups or ecosystems including amphibians, most of them would protect this salamander but the highest value may not on the whole life scale. - Highlights: • The salamanders, Hynobius lichenatus, were chronically γ-irradiated for 450 days. • At 490 μGy h{sup −1} or lower, irradiation did not significantly affect growth and survival. • All the individuals

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Phylogenetic analysis of Common Garter Snake (Thamnophis sirtalis) stomach contents detects cryptic range of a secretive salamander (Ensatina eschscholtzii oregonensis) Herpetological Conservation and Biology 5(3):395–402

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sean B. Reilly; Andrew D Gottsho; Justin M. Garwood; Bryan. Jennings

    2010-01-01

    Given the current global amphibian decline, it is crucial to obtain accurate and current information regarding species distributions. Secretive amphibians such as plethodontid salamanders can be difficult to detect in many cases, especially in remote, high elevation areas. We used molecular phylogenetic analyses to identify three partially digested salamanders palped...

  7. Comparing hair-morphology and molecular methods to identify fecal samples from Neotropical felids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos C Alberts

    Full Text Available To avoid certain problems encountered with more-traditional and invasive methods in behavioral-ecology studies of mammalian predators, such as felids, molecular approaches have been employed to identify feces found in the field. However, this method requires a complete molecular biology laboratory, and usually also requires very fresh fecal samples to avoid DNA degradation. Both conditions are normally absent in the field. To address these difficulties, identification based on morphological characters (length, color, banding, scales and medullar patterns of hairs found in feces could be employed as an alternative. In this study we constructed a morphological identification key for guard hairs of eight Neotropical felids (jaguar, oncilla, Geoffroy's cat, margay, ocelot, Pampas cat, puma and jaguarundi and compared its efficiency to that of a molecular identification method, using the ATP6 region as a marker. For this molecular approach, we simulated some field conditions by postponing sample-conservation procedures. A blind test of the identification key obtained a nearly 70% overall success rate, which we considered equivalent to or better than the results of some molecular methods (probably due to DNA degradation found in other studies. The jaguar, puma and jaguarundi could be unequivocally discriminated from any other Neotropical felid. On a scale ranging from inadequate to excellent, the key proved poor only for the margay, with only 30% of its hairs successfully identified using this key; and have intermediate success rates for the remaining species, the oncilla, Geoffroy's cat, ocelot and Pampas cat, were intermediate. Complementary information about the known distributions of felid populations may be necessary to substantially improve the results obtained with the key. Our own molecular results were even better, since all blind-tested samples were correctly identified. Part of these identifications were made from samples kept in suboptimal

  8. Space Use and Movement of a Neotropical Top Predator: The Endangered Jaguar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ronaldo G Morato

    Full Text Available Accurately estimating home range and understanding movement behavior can provide important information on ecological processes. Advances in data collection and analysis have improved our ability to estimate home range and movement parameters, both of which have the potential to impact species conservation. Fitting continuous-time movement model to data and incorporating the autocorrelated kernel density estimator (AKDE, we investigated range residency of forty-four jaguars fit with GPS collars across five biomes in Brazil and Argentina. We assessed home range and movement parameters of range resident animals and compared AKDE estimates with kernel density estimates (KDE. We accounted for differential space use and movement among individuals, sex, region, and habitat quality. Thirty-three (80% of collared jaguars were range resident. Home range estimates using AKDE were 1.02 to 4.80 times larger than KDE estimates that did not consider autocorrelation. Males exhibited larger home ranges, more directional movement paths, and a trend towards larger distances traveled per day. Jaguars with the largest home ranges occupied the Atlantic Forest, a biome with high levels of deforestation and high human population density. Our results fill a gap in the knowledge of the species' ecology with an aim towards better conservation of this endangered/critically endangered carnivore-the top predator in the Neotropics.

  9. Measures of the constitutive immune system are linked to diet and roosting habits of neotropical bats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karin Schneeberger

    Full Text Available Ecological and social factors are central in the emergence and transmission of infectious diseases, thus bearing the potential for shaping a species' immune functions. Although previous studies demonstrated a link between social factors and the cellular immune system for captive mammals, it is yet poorly understood how ecological factors are connected with the different branches of the immune system in wild populations. Here, we tested how variation in aspects of the constitutive cellular and humoral immune system of free ranging bats is associated with two ecological factors that likely influence the putative risk of species to become infected by parasites and pathogens: diet and shelter. We found that white blood cell counts of 24 syntopic Neotropical bat species varied with the species' diet and body mass. Bats that included at least partially vertebrates in their diet exhibited the highest white blood cell counts, followed by phytophagous and insectivorous species, which is in agreement with the assumption that the immune system varies with the pathogen transmission risk of a trophic level. The soluble part of the constitutive immune response, assessed by an in vitro bacterial killing assay, decreased with increasing roost permanence. Our results suggest that the ecology is an important factor in the evolution of the immune system in bats and probably also other mammals.

  10. Climatic changes can drive the loss of genetic diversity in a Neotropical savanna tree species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Jacqueline S; Ballesteros-Mejia, Liliana; Lima-Ribeiro, Matheus S; Collevatti, Rosane G

    2017-11-01

    The high rates of future climatic changes, compared with the rates reported for past changes, may hamper species adaptation to new climates or the tracking of suitable conditions, resulting in significant loss of genetic diversity. Trees are dominant species in many biomes and because they are long-lived, they may not be able to cope with ongoing climatic changes. Here, we coupled ecological niche modelling (ENM) and genetic simulations to forecast the effects of climatic changes on the genetic diversity and the structure of genetic clusters. Genetic simulations were conditioned to climatic variables and restricted to plant dispersal and establishment. We used a Neotropical savanna tree as species model that shows a preference for hot and drier climates, but with low temperature seasonality. The ENM predicts a decreasing range size along the more severe future climatic scenario. Additionally, genetic diversity and allelic richness also decrease with range retraction and climatic genetic clusters are lost for both future scenarios, which will lead genetic variability to homogenize throughout the landscape. Besides, climatic genetic clusters will spatially reconfigure on the landscape following displacements of climatic conditions. Our findings indicate that climate change effects will challenge population adaptation to new environmental conditions because of the displacement of genetic ancestry clusters from their optimal conditions. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Space Use and Movement of a Neotropical Top Predator: The Endangered Jaguar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morato, Ronaldo G; Stabach, Jared A; Fleming, Chris H; Calabrese, Justin M; De Paula, Rogério C; Ferraz, Kátia M P M; Kantek, Daniel L Z; Miyazaki, Selma S; Pereira, Thadeu D C; Araujo, Gediendson R; Paviolo, Agustin; De Angelo, Carlos; Di Bitetti, Mario S; Cruz, Paula; Lima, Fernando; Cullen, Laury; Sana, Denis A; Ramalho, Emiliano E; Carvalho, Marina M; Soares, Fábio H S; Zimbres, Barbara; Silva, Marina X; Moraes, Marcela D F; Vogliotti, Alexandre; May, Joares A; Haberfeld, Mario; Rampim, Lilian; Sartorello, Leonardo; Ribeiro, Milton C; Leimgruber, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Accurately estimating home range and understanding movement behavior can provide important information on ecological processes. Advances in data collection and analysis have improved our ability to estimate home range and movement parameters, both of which have the potential to impact species conservation. Fitting continuous-time movement model to data and incorporating the autocorrelated kernel density estimator (AKDE), we investigated range residency of forty-four jaguars fit with GPS collars across five biomes in Brazil and Argentina. We assessed home range and movement parameters of range resident animals and compared AKDE estimates with kernel density estimates (KDE). We accounted for differential space use and movement among individuals, sex, region, and habitat quality. Thirty-three (80%) of collared jaguars were range resident. Home range estimates using AKDE were 1.02 to 4.80 times larger than KDE estimates that did not consider autocorrelation. Males exhibited larger home ranges, more directional movement paths, and a trend towards larger distances traveled per day. Jaguars with the largest home ranges occupied the Atlantic Forest, a biome with high levels of deforestation and high human population density. Our results fill a gap in the knowledge of the species' ecology with an aim towards better conservation of this endangered/critically endangered carnivore-the top predator in the Neotropics.

  12. Partitioning detectability components in populations subject to within-season temporary emigration using binomial mixture models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Katherine M; Thompson, Frank R; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-01-01

    Detectability of individual animals is highly variable and nearly always binomial mixture models to account for multiple sources of variation in detectability. The state process of the hierarchical model describes ecological mechanisms that generate spatial and temporal patterns in abundance, while the observation model accounts for the imperfect nature of counting individuals due to temporary emigration and false absences. We illustrate our model's potential advantages, including the allowance of temporary emigration between sampling periods, with a case study of southern red-backed salamanders Plethodon serratus. We fit our model and a standard binomial mixture model to counts of terrestrial salamanders surveyed at 40 sites during 3-5 surveys each spring and fall 2010-2012. Our models generated similar parameter estimates to standard binomial mixture models. Aspect was the best predictor of salamander abundance in our case study; abundance increased as aspect became more northeasterly. Increased time-since-rainfall strongly decreased salamander surface activity (i.e. availability for sampling), while higher amounts of woody cover objects and rocks increased conditional detection probability (i.e. probability of capture, given an animal is exposed to sampling). By explicitly accounting for both components of detectability, we increased congruence between our statistical modeling and our ecological understanding of the system. We stress the importance of choosing survey locations and protocols that maximize species availability and conditional detection probability to increase population parameter estimate reliability.

  13. Anomalous colour in Neotropical mammals: a review with new records for Didelphis sp. (Didelphidae, Didelphimorphia and Arctocephalus australis (Otariidae, Carnivora

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    MSL. Abreu

    Full Text Available Anomalous colourations occur in many tropical vertebrates. However, they are considered rare in wild populations, with very few records for the majority of animal taxa. We report two new cases of anomalous colouration in mammals. Additionally, we compiled all published cases about anomalous pigmentation registered in Neotropical mammals, throughout a comprehensive review of peer reviewed articles between 1950 and 2010. Every record was classified as albinism, leucism, piebaldism or eventually as undetermined pigmentation. As results, we report the new record of a leucistic specimen of opossum (Didelphis sp. in southern Brazil, as well as a specimen of South American fur seal (Arctocephalus australis with piebaldism in Uruguay. We also found 31 scientific articles resulting in 23 records of albinism, 12 of leucism, 71 of piebaldism and 92 records classified as undetermined pigmentation. Anomalous colouration is apparently rare in small terrestrial mammals, but it is much more common in cetaceans and michrochiropterans. Out of these 198 records, 149 occurred in cetaceans and 30 in bats. The results related to cetaceans suggest that males and females with anomolous pigmentation are reproductively successful and as a consequence their frequencies are becoming higher in natural populations. In bats, this result can be related to the fact these animals orient themselves primarily through echolocation, and their refuges provide protection against light and predation. It is possible that anomalous colouration occurs more frequently in other Neotropical mammal orders, which were not formally reported. Therefore, we encourage researchers to publish these events in order to better understand this phenomenon that has a significant influence on animal survival.

  14. Recovery of bimodal locomotion in the spinal-transected salamander, Pleurodeles waltlii.

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    Chevallier, Stéphanie; Landry, Marc; Nagy, Frédéric; Cabelguen, Jean-Marie

    2004-10-01

    Electromyographic (EMG) analysis was used to provide an assessment of the recovery of locomotion in spinal-transected adult salamanders (Pleurodeles waltlii). EMG recordings were performed during swimming and overground stepping in the same animal before and at various times (up to 500 days) after a mid-trunk spinalization. Two-three weeks after spinalization, locomotor EMG activity was limited to the forelimbs and the body rostral to the transection. Thereafter, there was a return of the locomotor EMG activity at progressively more caudal levels below the transection. The animals reached stable locomotor patterns 3-4 months post-transection. Several locomotor parameters (cycle duration, burst duration, burst proportion, intersegmental phase lag, interlimb coupling) measured at various recovery times after spinalization were compared with those in intact animals. These comparisons revealed transient and long-term alterations in the locomotor parameters both above and below the transection site. These alterations were much more pronounced for swimming than for stepping and revealed differences in adaptive plasticity between the two locomotor networks. Recovered locomotor activity was immediately abolished by retransection at the site of the original spinalization, suggesting that the spinal cord caudal to the transection was reinnervated by descending brain and/or propriospinal axons, and that this regeneration contributed to the restoration of locomotor activity. Anatomical studies conducted in parallel further demonstrated that some of the regenerated axons came from glutamatergic and serotoninergic immunoreactive cells within the reticular formation.

  15. Sequencing and de novo transcriptome assembly of the Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus

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    Yong Huang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Next-generation technologies for determination of genomics and transcriptomics composition have a wide range of applications. Andrias davidianus, has become an endangered amphibian species of salamander endemic in China. However, there is a lack of the molecular information. In this study, we obtained the RNA-Seq data from a pool of A. davidianus tissue including spleen, liver, muscle, kidney, skin, testis, gut and heart using Illumina HiSeq 2500 platform. A total of 15,398,997,600 bp were obtained, corresponding to 102,659,984 raw reads. A total of 102,659,984 reads were filtered after removing low-quality reads and trimming the adapter sequences. The Trinity program was used to de novo assemble 132,912 unigenes with an average length of 690 bp and N50 of 1263 bp. Unigenes were annotated through number of databases. These transcriptomic data of A. davidianus should open the door to molecular evolution studies based on the entire transcriptome or targeted genes of interest to sequence. The raw data in this study can be available in NCBI SRA database with accession number of SRP099564.

  16. Transcriptome analysis of the Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus using RNA-sequencing

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    Yong Huang

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus is an economically important animal on academic value. However, the genomic information of this species has been less studied. In our study, the transcripts of A. davidianus were obtained by RNA-seq to conduct a transcriptomic analysis. In total 132,912 unigenes were generated with an average length of 690 bp and N50 of 1263 bp by de novo assembly using Trinity software. Using a sequence similarity search against the nine public databases (CDD, KOG, NR, NT, PFAM, Swiss-prot, TrEMBL, GO and KEGG databases, a total of 24,049, 18,406, 36,711, 15,858, 20,500, 27,515, 36,705, 28,879 and 10,958 unigenes were annotated in databases, respectively. Of these, 6323 unigenes were annotated in all database and 39,672 unigenes were annotated in at least one database. Blasted with KEGG pathway, 10,958 unigenes were annotated, and it was divided into 343 categories according to different pathways. In addition, we also identified 29,790 SSRs. This study provided a valuable resource for understanding transcriptomic information of A. davidianus and laid a foundation for further research on functional gene cloning, genomics, genetic diversity analysis and molecular marker exploitation in A. davidianus.

  17. Wetland and microhabitat use by nesting four-toed salamanders in Maine

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    Chalmers, R.J.; Loftin, C.S.

    2006-01-01

    Little is known of Four-Toed Salamander (Hemidactylium scutatum) habitat use, despite the species' extensive range and elevated conservation status. We investigated species-habitat relationships that predict H. scutatum nesting presence in Maine at wetland and microhabitat scales by comparing microhabitats with and without nests. We created logistic regression models, selected models with AIC, and evaluated models with reserve data. Wetlands with nests were best predicted by shoreline microhabitat of Sphagnum spp., wood substrate, water flow, blue-joint reed grass (Calamagrostis canadensis), meadowsweet (Spiraea alba), steeplebush (Spiraea tomentosa), sensitive fern (Onoclea sensibilis), and absence of sheep laurel (Kalmia angustifolia) or deciduous forest canopy. Within occupied wetlands, shoreline microhabitat where nests occurred was best distinguished from available, unoccupied shoreline microhabitat by steeper shore, greater near-shore and basin water depth, deeper nesting vegetation, presence of moss spp. and winterberry (Ilex verticillata), and a negative association with S. alba, leatherleaf (Chamaedaphne calyculata), and K. angustifolia. These models of wetland and microhabitat use by H. scutatum may assist ecologists and managers in detecting and conserving this species. Copyright 2006 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  18. Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Modulates Vomeronasal Neuron Response to Male Salamander Pheromone

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    Celeste R. Wirsig-Wiechmann

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Electrophysiological studies have shown that gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH modifies chemosensory neurons responses to odors. We have previously demonstrated that male Plethodon shermani pheromone stimulates vomeronasal neurons in the female conspecific. In the present study we used agmatine uptake as a relative measure of the effects of GnRH on this pheromone-induced neural activation of vomeronasal neurons. Whole male pheromone extract containing 3 millimolar agmatine with or without 10 micromolar GnRH was applied to the nasolabial groove of female salamanders for 45 minutes. Immunocytochemical procedures were conducted to visualize and quantify relative agmatine uptake as measured by labeling density of activated vomeronasal neurons. The relative number of labeled neurons did not differ between the two groups: pheromone alone or pheromone-GnRH. However, vomeronasal neurons exposed to pheromone-GnRH collectively demonstrated higher labeling intensity, as a percentage above background (75% as compared with neurons exposed to pheromone alone (63%, P < 0.018. Since the labeling intensity of agmatine within neurons signifies the relative activity levels of the neurons, these results suggest that GnRH increases the response of female vomeronasal neurons to male pheromone.

  19. Efficacy of chemical disinfectants for the containment of the salamander chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Rooij, Pascale; Pasmans, Frank; Coen, Yanaika; Martel, An

    2017-01-01

    The recently emerged chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) causes European salamander declines. Proper hygiene protocols including disinfection procedures are crucial to prevent disease transmission. Here, the efficacy of chemical disinfectants in killing Bsal was evaluated. At all tested conditions, Biocidal®, Chloramine-T®, Dettol medical®, Disolol®, ethanol, F10®, Hibiscrub®, potassium permanganate, Safe4®, sodium hypochlorite, and Virkon S®, were effective at killing Bsal. Concentrations of 5% sodium chloride or lower, 0.01% peracetic acid and 0.001-1% copper sulphate were inactive against Bsal. None of the conditions tested for hydrogen peroxide affected Bsal viability, while it did kill Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). For Bsal, enzymatic breakdown of hydrogen peroxide by catalases and specific morphological features (clustering of sporangia, development of new sporangia within the original sporangium), were identified as fungal factors altering susceptibility to several of the disinfectants tested. Based on the in vitro results we recommend 1% Virkon S®, 4% sodium hypochlorite and 70% ethanol for disinfecting equipment in the field, lab or captive setting, with a minimal contact time of 5 minutes for 1% Virkon S® and 1 minute for the latter disinfectants. These conditions not only efficiently target Bsal, but also Bd and Ranavirus.

  20. Efficacy of chemical disinfectants for the containment of the salamander chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans.

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    Pascale Van Rooij

    Full Text Available The recently emerged chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal causes European salamander declines. Proper hygiene protocols including disinfection procedures are crucial to prevent disease transmission. Here, the efficacy of chemical disinfectants in killing Bsal was evaluated. At all tested conditions, Biocidal®, Chloramine-T®, Dettol medical®, Disolol®, ethanol, F10®, Hibiscrub®, potassium permanganate, Safe4®, sodium hypochlorite, and Virkon S®, were effective at killing Bsal. Concentrations of 5% sodium chloride or lower, 0.01% peracetic acid and 0.001-1% copper sulphate were inactive against Bsal. None of the conditions tested for hydrogen peroxide affected Bsal viability, while it did kill Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd. For Bsal, enzymatic breakdown of hydrogen peroxide by catalases and specific morphological features (clustering of sporangia, development of new sporangia within the original sporangium, were identified as fungal factors altering susceptibility to several of the disinfectants tested. Based on the in vitro results we recommend 1% Virkon S®, 4% sodium hypochlorite and 70% ethanol for disinfecting equipment in the field, lab or captive setting, with a minimal contact time of 5 minutes for 1% Virkon S® and 1 minute for the latter disinfectants. These conditions not only efficiently target Bsal, but also Bd and Ranavirus.

  1. Morphological homoplasy, life history evolution, and historical biogeography of plethodontid salamanders inferred from complete mitochondrial genomes

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    Mueller, Rachel Lockridge; Macey, J. Robert; Jaekel, Martin; Wake, David B.; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2004-08-01

    The evolutionary history of the largest salamander family (Plethodontidae) is characterized by extreme morphological homoplasy. Analysis of the mechanisms generating such homoplasy requires an independent, molecular phylogeny. To this end, we sequenced 24 complete mitochondrial genomes (22 plethodontids and two outgroup taxa), added data for three species from GenBank, and performed partitioned and unpartitioned Bayesian, ML, and MP phylogenetic analyses. We explored four dataset partitioning strategies to account for evolutionary process heterogeneity among genes and codon positions, all of which yielded increased model likelihoods and decreased numbers of supported nodes in the topologies (PP > 0.95) relative to the unpartitioned analysis. Our phylogenetic analyses yielded congruent trees that contrast with the traditional morphology-based taxonomy; the monophyly of three out of four major groups is rejected. Reanalysis of current hypotheses in light of these new evolutionary relationships suggests that (1) a larval life history stage re-evolved from a direct-developing ancestor multiple times, (2) there is no phylogenetic support for the ''Out of Appalachia'' hypothesis of plethodontid origins, and (3) novel scenarios must be reconstructed for the convergent evolution of projectile tongues, reduction in toe number, and specialization for defensive tail loss. Some of these novel scenarios imply morphological transformation series that proceed in the opposite direction than was previously thought. In addition, they suggest surprising evolutionary lability in traits previously interpreted to be conservative.

  2. Temporal and demographic blood parasite dynamics in two free-ranging neotropical primates

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    Gideon A. Erkenswick

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Parasite-host relationships are influenced by several factors intrinsic to hosts, such as social standing, group membership, sex, and age. However, in wild populations, temporal variation in parasite distributions and concomitant infections can alter these patterns. We used microscropy and molecular methods to screen for naturally occurring haemoparasitic infections in two Neotropical primate host populations, the saddleback (Leontocebus weddelli and emperor (Saguinus imperator tamarin, in the lowland tropical rainforests of southeastern Peru. Repeat sampling was conducted from known individuals over a three-year period to test for parasite-host and parasite-parasite associations. Three parasites were detected in L. weddelli including Trypanosoma minasense, Mansonella mariae, and Dipetalonema spp., while S. imperator only hosted the latter two. Temporal variation in prevalence was observed in T. minasense and Dipetalonema spp., confirming the necessity of a multi-year study to evaluate parasite-host relationships in this system. Although callitrichids display a distinct reproductive dominance hierarchy, characterized by single breeding females that typically mate polyandrously and can suppress the reproduction of subdominant females, logistic models did not identify sex or breeding status as determining factors in the presence of these parasites. However, age class had a positive effect on infection with M. mariae and T. minasense, and adults demonstrated higher parasite species richness than juveniles or sub-adults across both species. Body weight had a positive effect on the presence of Dipetalonema spp. The inclusion of co-infection variables in statistical models of parasite presence/absence data improved model fit for two of three parasites. This study verifies the importance and need for broad spectrum and long-term screening of parasite assemblages of natural host populations.

  3. An integrative approach to phylogeography: investigating the effects of ancient seaways, climate, and historical geology on multi-locus phylogeographic boundaries of the Arboreal Salamander (Aneides lugubris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reilly, Sean B; Corl, Ammon; Wake, David B

    2015-11-04

    Phylogeography is an important tool that can be used to reveal cryptic biodiversity and to better understand the processes that promote lineage diversification. We studied the phylogeographic history of the Arboreal Salamander (Aneides lugubris), a wide-ranging species endemic to the California floristic province. We used multi-locus data to reconstruct the evolutionary history of A. lugubris and to discover the geographic location of major genetic breaks within the species. We also used species distribution modeling and comparative phylogeography to better understand the environmental factors that have shaped the genetic history of A. lugubris. We found six major mitochondrial clades in A. lugubris. Nuclear loci supported the existence of at least three genetically distinct groups, corresponding to populations north of the San Francisco Bay and in the Sierra Nevada, in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and in the central coast and southern California. All of the genetic breaks in mitochondrial and nuclear loci corresponded to regions where historical barriers to dispersal have been observed in other species. Geologic or water barriers likely were the most important factors restricting gene flow among clades. Climatic unsuitability during glacial maximum may have contributed to the isolation of the mitochondrial clades in the central coast and southern California. A projection of our species distribution model to a future scenario with a moderate amount of climate change suggests that most of the range of A. lugubris will remain climatically suitable, but climatic conditions in the Sierra Nevada and low elevation areas in Southern California are likely to deteriorate. Aneides lugubris contains substantial cryptic genetic diversity as a result of historical isolation of populations. At least two (and perhaps three) evolutionarily significant units in A. lugubris merit protection; all six mitochondrial clades should be considered as management units within the species.

  4. Fostering Children’s Connection to Nature Through Authentic Situations: The Case of Saving Salamanders at School

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    Stephan Barthel

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to explore how children learn to form new relationships with nature. It draws on a longitudinal case study of children participating in a stewardship project involving the conservation of salamanders during the school day in Stockholm, Sweden. The qualitative method includes two waves of data collection: when a group of 10-year-old children participated in the project (2015 and 2 years after they participated (2017. We conducted 49 interviews with children as well as using participant observations and questionnaires. We found indications that children developed sympathy for salamanders and increased concern and care for nature, and that such relationships persisted 2 years after participation. Our rich qualitative data suggest that whole situations of sufficient unpredictability triggering free exploration of the area, direct sensory contact and significant experiences of interacting with a species were important for children’s development of affective relationships with the salamander species and with nature in an open-ended sense. Saving the lives of trapped animals enabled direct sensory interaction, feedback, increased understanding, and development of new skills for dynamically exploring further ways of saving species in an interactive process experienced as deeply meaningful, enjoyable and connecting. The behavioral setting instilled a sense of pride and commitment, and the high degree of responsibility given to the children while exploring the habitat during authentic situations enriched children’s enjoyment. The study has implications for the design of education programs that aim to connect children with nature and for a child-sensitive urban policy that supports authentic nature situations in close spatial proximity to preschools and schools.

  5. Effects of atrazine on egg masses of the yellow-spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) and its endosymbiotic alga (Oophila amblystomatis)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baxter, Leilan; Brain, Richard A.; Hosmer, Alan J.; Nema, Mohini; Müller, Kirsten M.; Solomon, Keith R.; Hanson, Mark L.

    2015-01-01

    Embryonic growth of the yellow-spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) is enhanced by the presence of the green alga Oophila amblystomatis, in the egg capsule. To further assess potential impacts of herbicides on this relationship, A. maculatum egg masses were exposed to atrazine (0–338 μg/L) until hatching (up to 66 days). Exposure to atrazine reduced PSII yield of the symbiotic algae in a concentration-dependent manner, but did not significantly affect visible algal growth or any metrics associated with salamander development. Algal cells were also cultured in the laboratory for toxicity testing. In the 96-h growth inhibition test (0–680 μg/L), ECx values were generally greater than those reported for standard algal test species. Complete recovery of growth rates occurred within 96-h of transferring cells to untreated media. Overall, development of A. maculatum embryos was not affected by exposure to atrazine at concentrations and durations exceeding those found in the environment. - Highlights: • The yellow-spotted salamander produces eggs that are colonized by a symbiotic green alga. • We tested the sensitivity of this system to the herbicide atrazine. • Embryo development was not significantly affected by exposure at up to 300 μg/L. • The alga was isolated and 96-h growth tests were performed in the laboratory. • EC50s for Oophila sp. were >100 μg/L. - Development of Ambystoma maculatum embryos in egg masses was not impacted by exposure to atrazine at concentrations and durations exceeding those commonly found in the environment.

  6. Neotropical dry forest wildlife water hole use and management

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    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.

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

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    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.

  8. Environment and host species shape the skin microbiome of captive neotropical bats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tromas, Nicolas; Shapiro, B. Jesse; Lapointe, François-Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Background A wide range of microorganisms inhabit animal skin. This microbial community (microbiome) plays an important role in host defense against pathogens and disease. Bats (Chiroptera: Mammalia) are an ecologically and evolutionarily diversified group with a relatively unexplored skin microbiome. The bat skin microbiome could play a role in disease resistance, for example, to white nose syndrome (WNS), an infection which has been devastating North American bat populations. However, fundamental knowledge of the bat skin microbiome is needed before understanding its role in health and disease resistance. Captive neotropical frugivorous bats Artibeus jamaicensis and Carollia perspicillataprovide a simple controlled system in which to characterize the factors shaping the bat microbiome. Here, we aimed to determine the relative importance of habitat and host species on the bat skin microbiome. Methods We performed high-throughput 16S rRNA gene sequencing of the skin microbiome of two different bat species living in captivity in two different habitats. In the first habitat, A. jamaicensis and C. perspicillata lived together, while the second habitat contained only A. jamaicensis. Results We found that both habitat and host species shape the composition and diversity of the skin microbiome, with habitat having the strongest influence. Cohabitating A. jamaicensis and C. perspicillata shared more similar skin microbiomes than members of the same species (A. jamaicensis) across two habitats. Discussion These results suggest that in captivity, the skin microbial community is homogenised by the shared environments and individual proximities of bats living together in the same habitat, at the expense of the innate host species factors. The predominant influence of habitat suggests that environmental microorganisms or pathogens might colonize bat skin. We also propose that bat populations could differ in pathogen susceptibility depending on their immediate environment and

  9. Environment and host species shape the skin microbiome of captive neotropical bats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginie Lemieux-Labonté

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background A wide range of microorganisms inhabit animal skin. This microbial community (microbiome plays an important role in host defense against pathogens and disease. Bats (Chiroptera: Mammalia are an ecologically and evolutionarily diversified group with a relatively unexplored skin microbiome. The bat skin microbiome could play a role in disease resistance, for example, to white nose syndrome (WNS, an infection which has been devastating North American bat populations. However, fundamental knowledge of the bat skin microbiome is needed before understanding its role in health and disease resistance. Captive neotropical frugivorous bats Artibeus jamaicensis and Carollia perspicillataprovide a simple controlled system in which to characterize the factors shaping the bat microbiome. Here, we aimed to determine the relative importance of habitat and host species on the bat skin microbiome. Methods We performed high-throughput 16S rRNA gene sequencing of the skin microbiome of two different bat species living in captivity in two different habitats. In the first habitat, A. jamaicensis and C. perspicillata lived together, while the second habitat contained only A. jamaicensis. Results We found that both habitat and host species shape the composition and diversity of the skin microbiome, with habitat having the strongest influence. Cohabitating A. jamaicensis and C. perspicillata shared more similar skin microbiomes than members of the same species (A. jamaicensis across two habitats. Discussion These results suggest that in captivity, the skin microbial community is homogenised by the shared environments and individual proximities of bats living together in the same habitat, at the expense of the innate host species factors. The predominant influence of habitat suggests that environmental microorganisms or pathogens might colonize bat skin. We also propose that bat populations could differ in pathogen susceptibility depending on their immediate

  10. Mixed signals? Morphological and molecular evidence suggest a color polymorphism in some neotropical polythore damselflies.

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    Melissa Sánchez Herrera

    Full Text Available The study of color polymorphisms (CP has provided profound insights into the maintenance of genetic variation in natural populations. We here offer the first evidence for an elaborate wing polymorphism in the Neotropical damselfly genus Polythore, which consists of 21 described species, distributed along the eastern slopes of the Andes in South America. These damselflies display highly complex wing colors and patterning, incorporating black, white, yellow, and orange in multiple wing bands. Wing colors, along with some components of the male genitalia, have been the primary characters used in species description; few other morphological traits vary within the group, and so there are few useful diagnostic characters. Previous research has indicated the possibility of a cryptic species existing in P. procera in Colombia, despite there being no significant differences in wing color and pattern between the populations of the two putative species. Here we analyze the complexity and diversity of wing color patterns of individuals from five described Polythore species in the Central Amazon Basin of Peru using a novel suite of morphological analyses to quantify wing color and pattern: geometric morphometrics, chromaticity analysis, and Gabor wavelet transformation. We then test whether these color patterns are good predictors of species by recovering the phylogenetic relationships among the 5 species using the barcode gene (COI. Our results suggest that, while highly distinct and discrete wing patterns exist in Polythore, these "wingforms" do not represent monophyletic clades in the recovered topology. The wingforms identified as P. victoria and P. ornata are both involved in a polymorphism with P. neopicta; also, cryptic speciation may have taking place among individuals with the P. victoria wingform. Only P. aurora and P. spateri represent monophyletic species with a single wingform in our molecular phylogeny. We discuss the implications of this

  11. Mixed signals? Morphological and molecular evidence suggest a color polymorphism in some neotropical polythore damselflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez Herrera, Melissa; Kuhn, William R; Lorenzo-Carballa, Maria Olalla; Harding, Kathleen M; Ankrom, Nikole; Sherratt, Thomas N; Hoffmann, Joachim; Van Gossum, Hans; Ware, Jessica L; Cordero-Rivera, Adolfo; Beatty, Christopher D

    2015-01-01

    The study of color polymorphisms (CP) has provided profound insights into the maintenance of genetic variation in natural populations. We here offer the first evidence for an elaborate wing polymorphism in the Neotropical damselfly genus Polythore, which consists of 21 described species, distributed along the eastern slopes of the Andes in South America. These damselflies display highly complex wing colors and patterning, incorporating black, white, yellow, and orange in multiple wing bands. Wing colors, along with some components of the male genitalia, have been the primary characters used in species description; few other morphological traits vary within the group, and so there are few useful diagnostic characters. Previous research has indicated the possibility of a cryptic species existing in P. procera in Colombia, despite there being no significant differences in wing color and pattern between the populations of the two putative species. Here we analyze the complexity and diversity of wing color patterns of individuals from five described Polythore species in the Central Amazon Basin of Peru using a novel suite of morphological analyses to quantify wing color and pattern: geometric morphometrics, chromaticity analysis, and Gabor wavelet transformation. We then test whether these color patterns are good predictors of species by recovering the phylogenetic relationships among the 5 species using the barcode gene (COI). Our results suggest that, while highly distinct and discrete wing patterns exist in Polythore, these "wingforms" do not represent monophyletic clades in the recovered topology. The wingforms identified as P. victoria and P. ornata are both involved in a polymorphism with P. neopicta; also, cryptic speciation may have taking place among individuals with the P. victoria wingform. Only P. aurora and P. spateri represent monophyletic species with a single wingform in our molecular phylogeny. We discuss the implications of this polymorphism, and the

  12. Helminth Fauna Associated with Three Neotropical Bat Species (Chiroptera: Mormoopidae) in Veracruz, México.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke-Crespo, Emilio; de León, Gerardo Pérez-Ponce; Montiel-Ortega, Salvador; Rubio-Godoy, Miguel

    2017-08-01

    Bats are recognized as potential hosts of pathogens exploiting the food chain to reach them as definitive hosts. However, very little is known about their endoparasites, especially for Neotropical bats. In this study, we assessed the helminth fauna associated with 3 insectivorous bat species roosting in the same single hot cave in central Veracruz, México: Mormoops megalophylla, Pteronotus davyi, and Pteronotus personatus. During a period of 1 yr (April 2007-2008), 135 mormoopid bats in total were collected and examined for helminths. Six parasite species representing 3 types of intestinal helminths were found: 1 cestode Vampirolepis elongatus; 2 trematodes Maxbraunium tubiporum and Ochoterenatrema labda; and 3 nematodes Linustrongylus pteronoti, Molineidae gen. sp., and Capillaria sp. Overall, trematodes were the most abundant parasite group (72.4%), followed by nematodes (20.7%) and cestodes (6.9%). Species-accumulation curves suggest that the worms collected (n = 1,331) from these 6 parasite species comprise the helminth fauna associated with the 3 bat populations studied. The only species shared by the 3 bat species was Capillaria sp. Most (5/6) of the helminth species recorded use Lepidoptera and Diptera as intermediate hosts; therefore, diet is likely the main source of infection. Although insectivorous bats are considered dietary generalist species, the differences found in helminth diversity in these sympatric populations of closely related bat species, suggest that diet partitioning occurs in mormoopid bat communities. Helminths tend to exploit the food chain to reach their final hosts; therefore, studying these parasites can provide useful information to further understand the biology of bats.

  13. Juvenile survival in a neotropical migratory songbird is lower than expected.

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    Matthew I McKim-Louder

    Full Text Available Attempts to estimate and identify factors influencing first-year survival in passerines, survival between fledging and the first reproductive attempt (i.e. juvenile survival, have largely been confounded by natal dispersal, particularly in long-distance migratory passerines. We studied Prothonotary Warblers (Protonotaria citrea breeding in nest boxes to estimate first-year survival while accounting for biases related to dispersal that are common in mark-recapture studies. The natal dispersal distribution (median = 1420 m; n = 429 and a distance-dependent recruitment rate, which controls for effects of study site configuration, both indicated a pattern of short-distance natal dispersal. This pattern was consistent with results of a systematic survey for birds returning outside the nest box study sites (up to 30 km in all directions within a majority (81% of total available bottomland forest habitat, further suggesting that permanent emigration outside of the study system was rare. We used multistate mark-recapture modeling to estimate first-year survival and incorporated factors thought to influence survival while accounting for the potential confounding effects of dispersal on recapture probabilities for warblers that fledged during 2004-2009 (n = 6093. Overall, the average first-year survival for warblers reared without cowbird nestmates was 0.11 (95% CI = 0.09-0.13, decreased with fledging date (0.22 early to 0.03 late and averaged 40% lower for warblers reared with a brood parasite nestmate. First-year survival was less than half of the rate thought to represent population replacement in migratory passerines (∼0.30. This very low rate suggests that surviving the first year of life for many Neotropical migratory species is even more difficult than previously thought, forcing us to rethink estimates used in population models.

  14. Using targeted enrichment of nuclear genes to increase phylogenetic resolution in the neotropical rain forest genus Inga (Leguminosae: Mimosoideae

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    James A Nicholls

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Evolutionary radiations are prominent and pervasive across many plant lineages in diverse geographical and ecological settings; in neotropical rainforests there is growing evidence suggesting that a significant fraction of species richness is the result of recent radiations. Understanding the evolutionary trajectories and mechanisms underlying these radiations demands much greater phylogenetic resolution than is currently available for these groups. The neotropical tree genus Inga (Leguminosae is a good example, with ~300 extant species and a crown age of 2-10 MY, yet over 6kb of plastid and nuclear DNA sequence data gives only poor phylogenetic resolution among species. Here we explore the use of larger-scale nuclear gene data obtained though targeted enrichment to increase phylogenetic resolution within Inga. Transcriptome data from three Inga species were used to select 264 nuclear loci for targeted enrichment and sequencing. Following quality control to remove probable paralogs from these sequence data, the final dataset comprised 259,313 bases from 194 loci for 24 accessions representing 22 Inga species and an outgroup (Zygia. Bayesian phylogenies reconstructed using either all loci concatenated or a subset of 60 loci in a gene-tree/species-tree approach yielded highly resolved phylogenies. We used coalescent approaches to show that the same targeted enrichment data also have significant power to discriminate among alternative within-species population histories in the widespread species I. umbellifera. In either application, targeted enrichment simplifies the informatics challenge of identifying orthologous loci associated with de novo genome sequencing. We conclude that targeted enrichment provides the large volumes of phylogenetically-informative sequence data required to resolve relationships within recent plant species radiations, both at the species level and for within-species phylogeographic studies.

  15. Tracking a genetic signal of extinction-recolonization events in a neotropical tree species: Vouacapoua americana Aublet in French Guiana.

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    Dutech, Cyril; Maggia, Laurent; Tardy, Christophe; Joly, Hélène I; Jarne, Philippe

    2003-12-01

    Drier periods from the late Pleistocene and early Holocene have been hypothesized to have caused the disappearance of various rainforest species over large geographical areas in South America and restricted the extant populations to mesic sites. Subsequent improvement in climatic conditions has been associated with recolonization. Changes in population size associated with these extinction-recolonization events should have affected genetic diversity within species. However, these historical hypotheses and their genetic consequences have rarely been tested in South America. Here, we examine the diversity of the chloroplast and nuclear genomes in a Neotropical rainforest tree species, Vouacapoua americana (Leguminosae, Caesalpinioideae) in French Guiana. The chloroplast diversity was analyzed using a polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism method (six pairs of primers) in 29 populations distributed over most of French Guiana, and a subset of 17 populations was also analyzed at nine polymorphic microsatellite loci. To determine whether this species has experienced extinction-recolonization, we sampled populations in areas supposedly not or only slightly affected by climatic changes, where the populations would not have experienced frequent extinction, and in areas that appear to have been recently recolonized. In the putatively recolonized areas, we found patches of several thousands of hectares homogeneous for chloroplast variation that can be interpreted as the effect of recolonization processes from several geographical origins. In addition, we observed that, for both chloroplast and nuclear genomes, the populations in newly recolonized areas exhibited a significantly smaller allelic richness than others. Controlling for geographic distance, we also detected a significant correlation between chloroplast and nuclear population differentiation. This result indicates a cytonuclear disequilibrium that can be interpreted as a historical signal

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. Ontogenetic convergence and evolution of foot morphology in European cave salamanders (Family: Plethodontidae

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    Nistri Annamaria

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A major goal in evolutionary biology is to understand the evolution of phenotypic diversity. Both natural and sexual selection play a large role in generating phenotypic adaptations, with biomechanical requirements and developmental mechanisms mediating patterns of phenotypic evolution. For many traits, the relative importance of selective and developmental components remains understudied. Results We investigated ontogenetic trajectories of foot morphology in the eight species of European plethodontid cave salamander to test the hypothesis that adult foot morphology was adapted for climbing. Using geometric morphometrics and other approaches, we found that developmental patterns in five species displayed little morphological change during growth (isometry, where the extensive interdigital webbing in adults was best explained as the retention of the juvenile morphological state. By contrast, three species exhibited significant allometry, with an increase in interdigital webbing during growth. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that multiple evolutionary transitions between isometry and allometry of foot webbing have occurred in this lineage. Allometric parameters of foot growth were most similar to those of a tropical species previously shown to be adapted for climbing. Finally, interspecific variation in adult foot morphology was significantly reduced as compared to variation among juveniles, indicating that ontogenetic convergence had resulted in a common adult foot morphology across species. Conclusions The results presented here provide evidence of a complex history of phenotypic evolution in this clade. The common adult phenotype exhibited among species reveals that selection plays an important part in generating patterns of foot diversity in the group. However, developmental trajectories arriving at this common morphology are distinct; with some species displaying developmental stasis (isometry, while others show an increase

  7. A 3D musculo-mechanical model of the salamander for the study of different gaits and modes of locomotion

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    Nalin eHarischandra

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Computer simulation has been used to investigate several aspectsof locomotion in salamanders. Here we introduce a three-dimensionalforward dynamics mechanical model of a salamander, with physicallyrealistic weight and size parameters. Movements of the four limbs and ofthe trunk and tail are generated by sets of linearly modeled skeletalmuscles. In this study, activation of these muscles were driven byprescribed neural output patterns. The model was successfully used tomimic locomotion on level ground and in water. We compare thewalking gait where a wave of activity in the axial muscles travelsbetween the girdles, with the trotting gait in simulations usingthe musculo-mechanical model. In a separate experiment, the model is usedto compare different strategies for turning while stepping; either bybending the trunk or by using side-stepping in the front legs. We foundthat for turning, the use of side-stepping alone or in combination withtrunk bending, was more effective than the use of trunk bending alone. Weconclude that the musculo-mechanical model described here together with aproper neural controller is useful for neuro-physiological experiments insilico.

  8. Tongue and taste organ development in the ontogeny of direct-developing salamander Plethodon cinereus (Lissamphibia: Plethodontidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budzik, Karolina A; Żuwała, Krystyna; Kerney, Ryan

    2016-07-01

    The latest research on direct developing caecilian and anuran species indicate presence of only one generation of taste organs during their ontogeny. This is distinct from indirect developing batrachians studied thus far, which possess taste buds in larvae and anatomically distinct taste discs in metamorphs. This study is a description of the tongue and taste organ morphology and development in direct developing salamander Plethodon cinereus (Plethodontidae) using histology and electron microscopy techniques. The results reveal two distinct stages tongue morphology (primary and secondary), similar to metamorphic urodeles, although only one stage of taste organ morphology. Taste disc sensory zones emerge on the surface of the oropharyngeal epithelium by the end of embryonic development, which coincides with maturation of the soft tongue. Taste organs occur in the epithelium of the tongue pad (where they are situated on the dermal papillae), the palate and the inner surface of the mandible and the maxilla. Plethodon cinereus embryos only possess taste disc type taste organs. Similar to the direct developing anuran Eleutherodactylus coqui (Eleutherodactylidae), these salamanders do not recapitulate larval taste bud morphology as an embryo. The lack of taste bud formation is probably a broadly distributed feature characteristic to direct developing batrachians. J. Morphol. 277:906-915, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-01-01

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

  10. 3D bite modeling and feeding mechanics of the largest living amphibian, the Chinese giant salamander Andrias davidianus (Amphibia:Urodela.

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    Josep Fortuny

    Full Text Available Biting is an integral feature of the feeding mechanism for aquatic and terrestrial salamanders to capture, fix or immobilize elusive or struggling prey. However, little information is available on how it works and the functional implications of this biting system in amphibians although such approaches might be essential to understand feeding systems performed by early tetrapods. Herein, the skull biomechanics of the Chinese giant salamander, Andrias davidianus is investigated using 3D finite element analysis. The results reveal that the prey contact position is crucial for the structural performance of the skull, which is probably related to the lack of a bony bridge between the posterior end of the maxilla and the anterior quadrato-squamosal region. Giant salamanders perform asymmetrical strikes. These strikes are unusual and specialized behavior but might indeed be beneficial in such sit-and-wait or ambush-predators to capture laterally approaching prey. However, once captured by an asymmetrical strike, large, elusive and struggling prey have to be brought to the anterior jaw region to be subdued by a strong bite. Given their basal position within extant salamanders and their "conservative" morphology, cryptobranchids may be useful models to reconstruct the feeding ecology and biomechanics of different members of early tetrapods and amphibians, with similar osteological and myological constraints.

  11. Pseudo-immunolabelling with the avidin-biotin-peroxidase complex (ABC) due to the presence of endogenous biotin in retinal Müller cells of goldfish and salamander

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bhattacharjee, J.; Nunes Cardozo, B.; Kamphuis, W.; Kamermans, M.; Vrensen, G. F.

    1997-01-01

    Immunodetection techniques are dependent on enzyme-protein conjugates for the visualisation of antigen-antibody complexes. One of the most widely used is the avidin-biotin-peroxidase complex (ABC) method. The present study demonstrates that direct treatment of goldfish and salamander retinal

  12. 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.

  13. Economic Injury Level of the Neotropical Brown Stink Bug Euschistus heros (F.) on Cotton Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soria, M F; Degrande, P E; Panizzi, A R; Toews, M D

    2017-06-01

    In Brazil, the Neotropical brown stink bug, Euschistus heros (F.) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae), commonly disperses from soybeans to cotton fields. The establishment of an economic treatment threshold for this pest on cotton crops is required. Infestation levels of adults of E. heros were evaluated on cotton plants at preflowering, early flowering, boll filling, and full maturity by assessing external and internal symptoms of injury on bolls, seed cotton/lint production, and fiber quality parameters. A completely randomized experiment was designed to infest cotton plants in a greenhouse with 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8 bugs/plant, except at the full-maturity stage in which only infestation with 8 bugs/plant and uninfested plants were evaluated. Results indicated that the preflowering, early-flowering, and full-maturity stages were not affected by E. heros. A linear regression model showed a significant increase in the number of internal punctures and warts in the boll-filling stage as the population of bugs increased. The average number of loci with mottled immature fibers was significantly higher at 4, 6, and 8 bugs compared with uninfested plants with data following a quadratic regression model. The seed and lint cotton was reduced by 18 and 25% at the maximum level of infestation (ca. 8 bugs/plant) in the boll-filling stage. The micronaire and yellowing indexes were, respectively, reduced and increased with the increase of the infestation levels. The economic injury level of E. heros on cotton plants at the boll-filling stage was determined as 0.5 adult/plant. Based on that, a treatment threshold of 0.1 adult/plant can be recommended to avoid economic losses.

  14. Sensitivity of woody carbon stocks to bark investment strategy in Neotropical savannas and forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trugman, Anna T.; Medvigy, David; Hoffmann, William A.; Pellegrini, Adam F. A.

    2018-01-01

    Fire frequencies are changing in Neotropical savannas and forests as a result of forest fragmentation and increasing drought. Such changes in fire regime and climate are hypothesized to destabilize tropical carbon storage, but there has been little consideration of the widespread variability in tree fire tolerance strategies. To test how aboveground carbon stocks change with fire frequency and composition of plants with different fire tolerance strategies, we update the Ecosystem Demography model 2 (ED2) with (i) a fire survivorship module based on tree bark thickness (a key fire-tolerance trait across woody plants in savannas and forests), and (ii) plant functional types representative of trees in the region. With these updates, the model is better able to predict how fire frequency affects population demography and aboveground woody carbon. Simulations illustrate that the high survival rate of thick-barked, large trees reduces carbon losses with increasing fire frequency, with high investment in bark being particularly important in reducing losses in the wettest sites. Additionally, in landscapes that frequently burn, bark investment can broaden the range of climate and fire conditions under which savannas occur by reducing the range of conditions leading to either complete tree loss or complete grass loss. These results highlight that tropical vegetation dynamics depend not only on rainfall and changing fire frequencies but also on tree fire survival strategy. Further, our results indicate that fire survival strategy is fundamentally important in regulating tree size demography in ecosystems exposed to fire, which increases the preservation of aboveground carbon stocks and the coexistence of different plant functional groups.

  15. Adding Biotic Interactions into Paleodistribution Models: A Host-Cleptoparasite Complex of Neotropical Orchid Bees.

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    Daniel Paiva Silva

    Full Text Available Orchid bees compose an exclusive Neotropical pollinators group, with bright body coloration. Several of those species build their own nests, while others are reported as nest cleptoparasites. Here, the objective was to evaluate whether the inclusion of a strong biotic interaction, such as the presence of a host species, improved the ability of species distribution models (SDMs to predict the geographic range of the cleptoparasite species. The target species were Aglae caerulea and its host species Eulaema nigrita. Additionally, since A. caerulea is more frequently found in the Amazon rather than the Cerrado areas, a secondary objective was to evaluate whether this species is increasing or decreasing its distribution given South American past and current climatic conditions. SDMs methods (Maxent and Bioclim, in addition with current and past South American climatic conditions, as well as the occurrences for A. caerulea and E. nigrita were used to generate the distribution models. The distribution of A. caerulea was generated with and without the inclusion of the distribution of E. nigrita as a predictor variable. The results indicate A. caerulea was barely affected by past climatic conditions and the populations from the Cerrado savanna could be at least 21,000 years old (the last glacial maximum, as well as the Amazonian ones. On the other hand, in this study, the inclusion of the host-cleptoparasite interaction complex did not statistically improve the quality of the produced models, which means that the geographic range of this cleptoparasite species is mainly constrained by climate and not by the presence of the host species. Nonetheless, this could also be caused by unknown complexes of other Euglossini hosts with A. caerulea, which still are still needed to be described by science.

  16. Interactions between terrestrial mammals and the fruits of two neotropical rainforest tree species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camargo-Sanabria, Angela A.; Mendoza, Eduardo

    2016-05-01

    Mammalian frugivory is a distinctive biotic interaction of tropical forests; however, most efforts in the Neotropics have focused on cases of animals foraging in the forest canopy, in particular primates and bats. In contrast much less is known about this interaction when it involves fruits deposited on the forest floor and terrestrial mammals. We conducted a camera-trapping survey to analyze the characteristics of the mammalian ensembles visiting fruits of Licania platypus and Pouteria sapota deposited on the forest floor in a well preserved tropical rainforest of Mexico. Both tree species produce large fruits but contrast in their population densities and fruit chemical composition. In particular, we expected that more species of terrestrial mammals would consume P. sapota fruits due to its higher pulp:seed ratio, lower availability and greater carbohydrate content. We monitored fruits at the base of 13 trees (P. sapota, n = 4 and L. platypus, n = 9) using camera-traps. We recorded 13 mammal species from which we had evidence of 8 consuming or removing fruits. These eight species accounted for 70% of the species of mammalian frugivores active in the forest floor of our study area. The ensemble of frugivores associated with L. platypus (6 spp.) was a subset of that associated with P. sapota (8 spp). Large body-sized species such as Tapirus bairdii, Pecari tajacu and Cuniculus paca were the mammals more frequently interacting with fruits of the focal species. Our results further our understanding of the characteristics of the interaction between terrestrial mammalian frugivores and large-sized fruits, helping to gain a more balanced view of its importance across different tropical forests and providing a baseline to compare against defaunated forests.

  17. Longitudinal habitat disruption in Neotropical streams: fish assemblages under the influence of culverts

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    José Roberto Mariano

    Full Text Available This study assessed differences in fish assemblages existing upstream and downstream two types of culverts, one on each of two different Neotropical streams. We analyzed the composition and structure of the ichthyofauna and tested for spatial patterns. Fish sampling was carried out monthly between November 2009 and October 2010 using different fishing gears. We collected 2,220 fish of 33 species; 901 in stretches of the Lopeí stream - circular culvert and 1,310 in stretches of the Pindorama stream - box culvert. Fish abundance was similar in upstream and downstream stretches of the circular culvert, whereas it was slightly higher in the upstream than downstream stretch for the box culvert. Characiformes predominated in the upstream stretch of both culverts. On the other hand, Siluriformes was abundant in the downstream stretch of the circular culvert, with similar abundance in the stretches of the box culvert. Species richness and diversity (Shannon-Weiner Index were higher in the downstream stretch of the circular culvert, but they were similar in both stretches of the box culvert. The most abundant species were Astyanax altiparanae, A. paranae, A. fasciatus, Ancistrus sp., and Hypostomus sp. The last two species were more abundant in the downstream stretch of the circular culvert, and similar in stretches of the box culvert. Our study indicated variations in the species abundance, richness, and diversity between upstream and downstream stretches in particular of the circular culvert in the Lopeí stream, suggesting that fish movements are restrained more intensively in this culvert, especially for Siluriformes. The drop in the circular culvert outlet probably created passage barriers especially for those fish that has no ability to jump, where downstream erosion could lead to culvert perching. Studies on appropriate road crossing design or installation are fundamental whereas improvements in these structures can restore the connectivity of

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

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    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.

  19. Molecular phylogenetic reconstruction of the endemic Asian salamander family Hynobiidae (Amphibia, Caudata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weisrock, David W; Macey, J Robert; Matsui, Masafumi; Mulcahy, Daniel G; Papenfuss, Theodore J

    2013-01-01

    The salamander family Hynobiidae contains over 50 species and has been the subject of a number of molecular phylogenetic investigations aimed at reconstructing branches across the entire family. In general, studies using the greatest amount of sequence data have used reduced taxon sampling, while the study with the greatest taxon sampling has used a limited sequence data set. Here, we provide insights into the phylogenetic history of the Hynobiidae using both dense taxon sampling and a large mitochondrial DNA sequence data set. We report exclusive new mitochondrial DNA data of 2566 aligned bases (with 151 excluded sites, of included sites 1157 are variable with 957 parsimony informative). This is sampled from two genic regions encoding a 12S-16S region (the 3' end of 12S rRNA, tRNA(VAI), and the 5' end of 16S rRNA), and a ND2-COI region (ND2, tRNA(Trp), tRNA(Ala), tRNA(Asn), the origin for light strand replication--O(L), tRNA(Cys), tRNAT(Tyr), and the 5' end of COI). Analyses using parsimony, Bayesian, and maximum likelihood optimality criteria produce similar phylogenetic trees, with discordant branches generally receiving low levels of branch support. Monophyly of the Hynobiidae is strongly supported across all analyses, as is the sister relationship and deep divergence between the genus Onychodactylus with all remaining hynobiids. Within this latter grouping our phylogenetic results identify six clades that are relatively divergent from one another, but for which there is minimal support for their phylogenetic placement. This includes the genus Batrachuperus, the genus Hynobius, the genus Pachyhynobius, the genus Salamandrella, a clade containing the genera Ranodon and Paradactylodon, and a clade containing the genera Liua and Pseudohynobius. This latter clade receives low bootstrap support in the parsimony analysis, but is consistent across all three analytical methods. Our results also clarify a number of well-supported relationships within the larger

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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...

  3. 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...

  4. 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...

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Distributional patterns of the Neotropical genus Thecomyia Perty (Diptera, Sciomyzidae and phylogenetic support

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    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.

  8. Descriptions of two new species of Sphenorhina (Hemiptera, Cercopidae, Tomaspidinae from the Neotropical region

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    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.

  9. 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

  10. New taxa, including three new genera show uniqueness of Neotropical Nepticulidae (Lepidoptera)

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    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

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. 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

  14. 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...

  15. Use of space by neotropical marsupial Didelphis albiventris (Didelphimorphia: Didelphidae in an urban forest fragment Uso do espaço pelo marsupial Neotropical Didelphis albiventris (Didelphimorphia: Didelphidae em um fragmento florestal urbano

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    Alex J. de Almeida

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available A population of the Neotropical marsupial Didelphis albiventris (Lund, 1840 living in an urban forest fragment was studied. Population structure and the influence of sex and age on two variables related to habitat use (Daily home range - MCP and Habitat use intensity - UI obtained by the spool-and-line technique were analysed. There were 20 males and 29 females studied (N = 49. No sexual dimorphism was apparent in adult individuals. There were 16 males and 24 females tracked using the spool-and-line device. There were significant differences found in the mean size of the daily home range, which was greater in adults than in sub-adults. Regarding the habitat use intensity there were also significant differences related to age. There were no significant differences in MCP and UI related to the sex of the individuals. Besides the analyzed factors, the variables related to habitat use are possibly influenced by other factors, especially, the ones related to the conservation status of the fragment.Neste estudo foi analisada uma população do marsupial neotropical Didelphis albiventris (Lund, 1840, em um fragmento florestal urbano, e foram analisados aspectos da estrutura da população, e a influência do sexo e da idade em duas variáveis relativas ao uso do hábitat - Área de Vida Diária (MCP e Intensidade de Uso do Hábitat (UI, obtidas com a técnica do carretel de rastreamento. Foram estudados 49 indivíduos marcados, dos quais 20 eram machos e 29 eram fêmeas. Dos animais adultos, não foi encontrado qualquer dimorfismo sexual. De 40 indivíduos rastreados com carretel (16 machos, 24 fêmeas, diferenças significativas no MCP foram encontradas, sendo que os indivíduos adultos apresentaram tamanhos médios maiores que os sub-adultos. Quanto à UI, diferenças significativas foram observadas também relacionadas à idade. Não foram encontradas diferenças entre sexos com relação ao MCP e IU. Além dos fatores analisados, as vari

  16. 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.

  17. Aquaporins in the wild: natural genetic diversity and selective pressure in the PIP gene family in five Neotropical tree species

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    Vendramin Giovanni G

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Tropical trees undergo severe stress through seasonal drought and flooding, and the ability of these species to respond may be a major factor in their survival in tropical ecosystems, particularly in relation to global climate change. Aquaporins are involved in the regulation of water flow and have been shown to be involved in drought response; they may therefore play a major adaptive role in these species. We describe genetic diversity in the PIP sub-family of the widespread gene family of Aquaporins in five Neotropical tree species covering four botanical families. Results PIP Aquaporin subfamily genes were isolated, and their DNA sequence polymorphisms characterised in natural populations. Sequence data were analysed with statistical tests of standard neutral equilibrium and demographic scenarios simulated to compare with the observed results. Chloroplast SSRs were also used to test demographic transitions. Most gene fragments are highly polymorphic and display signatures of balancing selection or bottlenecks; chloroplast SSR markers have significant statistics that do not conform to expectations for population bottlenecks. Although not incompatible with a purely demographic scenario, the combination of all tests tends to favour a selective interpretation of extant gene diversity. Conclusions Tropical tree PIP genes may generally undergo balancing selection, which may maintain high levels of genetic diversity at these loci. Genetic variation at PIP genes may represent a response to variable environmental conditions.

  18. Inferring the provenance of an alien species with DNA barcodes: the neotropical butterfly Dryas iulia in Thailand.

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    Noah A Burg

    Full Text Available The Neotropical butterfly Dryas iulia has been collected from several locations in Thailand and Malaysia since 2007, and has been observed breeding in the wild, using introduced Passiflora foetida as a larval host plant. The butterfly is bred by a butterfly house in Phuket, Thailand, for release at weddings and Buddhist ceremonies, and we hypothesized that this butterfly house was the source of wild, Thai individuals. We compared wing patterns and COI barcodes from two, wild Thai populations with individuals obtained from this butterfly house. All Thai individuals resemble the subspecies D. iulia modesta, and barcodes from wild and captive Thai specimens were identical. This unique, Thai barcode was not found in any of the 30 specimens sampled from the wild in the species' native range, but is most similar to specimens from Costa Rica, where many exporting butterfly farms are located. These data implicate the butterfly house as the source of Thailand's wild D. iulia populations, which are currently so widespread that eradication efforts are unlikely to be successful.

  19. Inferring the provenance of an alien species with DNA barcodes: the neotropical butterfly Dryas iulia in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burg, Noah A; Pradhan, Ashman; Gonzalez, Rebecca M; Morban, Emely Z; Zhen, Erica W; Sakchoowong, Watana; Lohman, David J

    2014-01-01

    The Neotropical butterfly Dryas iulia has been collected from several locations in Thailand and Malaysia since 2007, and has been observed breeding in the wild, using introduced Passiflora foetida as a larval host plant. The butterfly is bred by a butterfly house in Phuket, Thailand, for release at weddings and Buddhist ceremonies, and we hypothesized that this butterfly house was the source of wild, Thai individuals. We compared wing patterns and COI barcodes from two, wild Thai populations with individuals obtained from this butterfly house. All Thai individuals resemble the subspecies D. iulia modesta, and barcodes from wild and captive Thai specimens were identical. This unique, Thai barcode was not found in any of the 30 specimens sampled from the wild in the species' native range, but is most similar to specimens from Costa Rica, where many exporting butterfly farms are located. These data implicate the butterfly house as the source of Thailand's wild D. iulia populations, which are currently so widespread that eradication efforts are unlikely to be successful.

  20. 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

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

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    Bernal Matarrita-Carranza

    2017-10-01

    taxa and ranging from the American temperate to the Neotropical region. Our work thus provides important insights into the widespread distribution of Actinobacteria and hymenopteran insects associations, while also pointing at novel resources that could be targeted for the discovery of active natural products with great potential in medical and biotechnological applications.

  2. Selectivity of fish ladders: a bottleneck in Neotropical fish movement

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    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

  3. 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

    ranging from the American temperate to the Neotropical region. Our work thus provides important insights into the widespread distribution of Actinobacteria and hymenopteran insects associations, while also pointing at novel resources that could be targeted for the discovery of active natural products with great potential in medical and biotechnological applications. PMID:29089938

  4. Partitioning detectability components in populations subject to within-season temporary emigration using binomial mixture models.

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    Katherine M O'Donnell

    Full Text Available Detectability of individual animals is highly variable and nearly always < 1; imperfect detection must be accounted for to reliably estimate population sizes and trends. Hierarchical models can simultaneously estimate abundance and effective detection probability, but there are several different mechanisms that cause variation in detectability. Neglecting temporary emigration can lead to biased population estimates because availability and conditional detection probability are confounded. In this study, we extend previous hierarchical binomial mixture models to account for multiple sources of variation in detectability. The state process of the hierarchical model describes ecological mechanisms that generate spatial and temporal patterns in abundance, while the observation model accounts for the imperfect nature of counting individuals due to temporary emigration and false absences. We illustrate our model's potential advantages, including the allowance of temporary emigration between sampling periods, with a case study of southern red-backed salamanders Plethodon serratus. We fit our model and a standard binomial mixture model to counts of terrestrial salamanders surveyed at 40 sites during 3-5 surveys each spring and fall 2010-2012. Our models generated similar parameter estimates to standard binomial mixture models. Aspect was the best predictor of salamander abundance in our case study; abundance increased as aspect became more northeasterly. Increased time-since-rainfall strongly decreased salamander surface activity (i.e. availability for sampling, while higher amounts of woody cover objects and rocks increased conditional detection probability (i.e. probability of capture, given an animal is exposed to sampling. By explicitly accounting for both components of detectability, we increased congruence between our statistical modeling and our ecological understanding of the system. We stress the importance of choosing survey locations and

  5. Recombinant nAG (a Salamander-Derived Protein Decreases the Formation of Hypertrophic Scarring in the Rabbit Ear Model

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    Mohammad M. Al-Qattan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available nAG (newt-Anterrior Gradient protein is the key mediator of regrowth of amputated limbs in salamanders. In a previous work in our lab, a new nAG gene (suitable for humans was designed and cloned. The cloned vector was transfected into primary human fibroblasts. The expression of nAG in human primary fibroblasts was found to suppress collagen expression. The current study shows that local injection of recombinant nAG reduces scar hypertrophy in the rabbit ear model. This is associated with lower scar elevation index (SEI, lower levels of collagen I & III, higher levels of MMP1, and a higher degree of scar maturation in experimental wounds compared to controls.

  6. Hatching success in salamanders and chorus frogs at two sites in Colorado, USA: Effects of acidic deposition and climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muths, E.; Campbell, D.H.; Corn, P.S.

    2003-01-01

    The snowpack in the vicinity of the Mount Zirkel Wilderness Area is among the most acidic in the western United States. We analyzed water chemistry and examined hatching success in tiger salamanders and chorus frogs at ponds there and at nearby Rabbit Ears Pass (Dumont) to determine whether acid deposition affects amphibians or their breeding habitats at these potentially sensitive locations. We found a wide range of acid neutralizing capacity among ponds within sites; the minimum pH recorded during the experiment was 5.4 at one of 12 ponds with all others at pH ??? 5.7. At Dumont, hatching success for chorus frogs was greater in ponds with low acid neutralizing capacity; however, lowest pHs were >5.8. At current levels of acid deposition, weather and pond characteristics are likely more important than acidity in influencing hatching success in amphibian larvae at these sites.

  7. Molecular detection of vertebrates in stream water: a demonstration using Rocky Mountain tailed frogs and Idaho giant salamanders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldberg, Caren S; Pilliod, David S; Arkle, Robert S; Waits, Lisette P

    2011-01-01

    Stream ecosystems harbor many secretive and imperiled species, and studies of vertebrates in these systems face the challenges of relatively low detection rates and high costs. Environmental DNA (eDNA) has recently been confirmed as a sensitive and efficient tool for documenting aquatic vertebrates in wetlands and in a large river and canal system. However, it was unclear whether this tool could be used to detect low-density vertebrates in fast-moving streams where shed cells may travel rapidly away from their source. To evaluate the potential utility of eDNA techniques in stream systems, we designed targeted primers to amplify a short, species-specific DNA fragment for two secretive stream amphibian species in the northwestern region of the United States (Rocky Mountain tailed frogs, Ascaphus montanus, and Idaho giant salamanders, Dicamptodon aterrimus). We tested three DNA extraction and five PCR protocols to determine whether we could detect eDNA of these species in filtered water samples from five streams with varying densities of these species in central Idaho, USA. We successfully amplified and sequenced the targeted DNA regions for both species from stream water filter samples. We detected Idaho giant salamanders in all samples and Rocky Mountain tailed frogs in four of five streams and found some indication that these species are more difficult to detect using eDNA in early spring than in early fall. While the sensitivity of this method across taxa remains to be determined, the use of eDNA could revolutionize surveys for rare and invasive stream species. With this study, the utility of eDNA techniques for detecting aquatic vertebrates has been demonstrated across the majority of freshwater systems, setting the stage for an innovative transformation in approaches for aquatic research.

  8. Molecular detection of vertebrates in stream water: a demonstration using Rocky Mountain tailed frogs and Idaho giant salamanders.

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    Caren S Goldberg

    Full Text Available Stream ecosystems harbor many secretive and imperiled species, and studies of vertebrates in these systems face the challenges of relatively low detection rates and high costs. Environmental DNA (eDNA has recently been confirmed as a sensitive and efficient tool for documenting aquatic vertebrates in wetlands and in a large river and canal system. However, it was unclear whether this tool could be used to detect low-density vertebrates in fast-moving streams where shed cells may travel rapidly away from their source. To evaluate the potential utility of eDNA techniques in stream systems, we designed targeted primers to amplify a short, species-specific DNA fragment for two secretive stream amphibian species in the northwestern region of the United States (Rocky Mountain tailed frogs, Ascaphus montanus, and Idaho giant salamanders, Dicamptodon aterrimus. We tested three DNA extraction and five PCR protocols to determine whether we could detect eDNA of these species in filtered water samples from five streams with varying densities of these species in central Idaho, USA. We successfully amplified and sequenced the targeted DNA regions for both species from stream water filter samples. We detected Idaho giant salamanders in all samples and Rocky Mountain tailed frogs in four of five streams and found some indication that these species are more difficult to detect using eDNA in early spring than in early fall. While the sensitivity of this method across taxa remains to be determined, the use of eDNA could revolutionize surveys for rare and invasive stream species. With this study, the utility of eDNA techniques for detecting aquatic vertebrates has been demonstrated across the majority of freshwater systems, setting the stage for an innovative transformation in approaches for aquatic research.

  9. Hindcasting Historical Breeding Conditions for an Endangered Salamander in Ephemeral Wetlands of the Southeastern USA: Implications of Climate Change.

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    Houston C Chandler

    Full Text Available The hydroperiod of ephemeral wetlands is often the most important characteristic determining amphibian breeding success, especially for species with long development times. In mesic and wet pine flatwoods of the southeastern United States, ephemeral wetlands were a common landscape feature. Reticulated flatwoods salamanders (Ambystoma bishopi, a federally endangered species, depend exclusively on ephemeral wetlands and require at least 11 weeks to successfully metamorphose into terrestrial adults. We empirically modeled hydroperiod of 17 A. bishopi breeding wetlands by combining downscaled historical climate-model data with a recent 9-year record (2006-2014 of observed water levels. Empirical models were subsequently used to reconstruct wetland hydrologic conditions from 1896-2014 using the downscaled historical climate datasets. Reconstructed hydroperiods for the 17 wetlands were highly variable through time but were frequently unfavorable for A. bishopi reproduction (e.g., only 61% of years, using a conservative estimate of development time [12 weeks], were conducive to larval development and metamorphosis. Using change-point analysis, we identified significant shifts in average hydroperiod over the last century in all 17 wetlands. Mean hydroperiods were shorter in recent years than at any other point since 1896, and thus less suitable for A. bishopi reproduction. We suggest that climate change will continue to impact the reproductive success of flatwoods salamanders and other ephemeral wetland breeders by reducing the number of years these wetlands have suitable hydroperiods. Consequently, we emphasize the importance of conservation and management for mitigating other forms of habitat degradation, especially maintenance of high quality breeding sites where reproduction can occur during appropriate environmental conditions.

  10. Histological and MS spectrometric analyses of the modified tissue of bulgy form tadpoles induced by salamander predation

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    Tsukasa Mori

    2012-02-01

    The rapid induction of a defensive morphology by a prey species in face of a predation risk is an intriguing in ecological context; however, the physiological mechanisms that underlie this phenotypic plasticity remain uncertain. Here we investigated the phenotypic changes shown by Rana pirica tadpoles in response to a predation threat by larvae of the salamander Hynobius retardatus. One such response is the bulgy morph phenotype, a relatively rapid swelling in size by the tadpoles that begins within 4 days and reaches a maximum at 8 to 10 days. We found that although the total volume of bodily fluid increased significantly (P<0.01 in bulgy morph tadpoles, osmotic pressure was maintained at the same level as control tadpoles by a significant increase (P<0.01 in Na and Cl ion concentrations. In our previous report, we identified a novel frog gene named pirica that affects the waterproofing of the skin membrane in tadpoles. Our results support the hypothesis that predator-induced expression of pirica on the skin membrane causes retention of absorbed water. Midline sections of bulgy morph tadpoles showed the presence of swollen connective tissue beneath the skin that was sparsely composed of cells containing hyaluronic acid. Mass spectrographic (LC-MS/MS analysis identified histone H3 and 14-3-3 zeta as the most abundant constituents in the liquid aspirated from the connective tissue of bulgy tadpoles. Immunohistochemistry using antibodies against these proteins showed the presence of non-chromatin associated histone H3 in the swollen connective tissue. Histones and 14-3-3 proteins are also involved in antimicrobial activity and secretion of antibacterial proteins, respectively. Bulgy tadpoles have a larger surface area than controls, and their skin often has bite wounds inflicted by the larval salamanders. Thus, formation of the bulgy morph may also require and be supported by activation of innate immune systems.

  11. Parallel habitat acclimatization is realized by the expression of different genes in two closely related salamander species (genus Salamandra).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goedbloed, D J; Czypionka, T; Altmüller, J; Rodriguez, A; Küpfer, E; Segev, O; Blaustein, L; Templeton, A R; Nolte, A W; Steinfartz, S

    2017-12-01

    The utilization of similar habitats by different species provides an ideal opportunity to identify genes underlying adaptation and acclimatization. Here, we analysed the gene expression of two closely related salamander species: Salamandra salamandra in Central Europe and Salamandra infraimmaculata in the Near East. These species inhabit similar habitat types: 'temporary ponds' and 'permanent streams' during larval development. We developed two species-specific gene expression microarrays, each targeting over 12 000 transcripts, including an overlapping subset of 8331 orthologues. Gene expression was examined for systematic differences between temporary ponds and permanent streams in larvae from both salamander species to establish gene sets and functions associated with these two habitat types. Only 20 orthologues were associated with a habitat in both species, but these orthologues did not show parallel expression patterns across species more than expected by chance. Functional annotation of a set of 106 genes with the highest effect size for a habitat suggested four putative gene function categories associated with a habitat in both species: cell proliferation, neural development, oxygen responses and muscle capacity. Among these high effect size genes was a single orthologue (14-3-3 protein zeta/YWHAZ) that was downregulated in temporary ponds in both species. The emergence of four gene function categories combined with a lack of parallel expression of orthologues (except 14-3-3 protein zeta) suggests that parallel habitat adaptation or acclimatization by larvae from S. salamandra and S. infraimmaculata to temporary ponds and permanent streams is mainly realized by different genes with a converging functionality.

  12. 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 ...

  13. 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

  14. A review of the biology and conservation of the Cope's giant salamander Dicamptodon copei Nussbaum, 1970 (Amphibia: Caudata: Dicamptodontidae) in the Pacific northwestern region of the USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alex D. Foster; Deanna H. Olson; Lawrence L.C. Jones

    2015-01-01

    The Cope’s Giant Salamander Dicamptodon copei is a stream dwelling amphibian reliant on cool streams, native to forested areas primarily west of the crest of the Cascade Range in the Pacific Northwest region, USA. Unlike other members of the genus, adult D. copei are most often found in a paedomorphic form, and rarely transforms to a terrestrial stage. As a result,...

  15. Solution structure and phylogenetics of Prod1, a member of the three-finger protein superfamily implicated in salamander limb regeneration.

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    Acely Garza-Garcia

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Following the amputation of a limb, newts and salamanders have the capability to regenerate the lost tissues via a complex process that takes place at the site of injury. Initially these cells undergo dedifferentiation to a state competent to regenerate the missing limb structures. Crucially, dedifferentiated cells have memory of their level of origin along the proximodistal (PD axis of the limb, a property known as positional identity. Notophthalmus viridescens Prod1 is a cell-surface molecule of the three-finger protein (TFP superfamily involved in the specification of newt limb PD identity. The TFP superfamily is a highly diverse group of metazoan proteins that includes snake venom toxins, mammalian transmembrane receptors and miscellaneous signaling molecules. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: With the aim of identifying potential orthologs of Prod1, we have solved its 3D structure and compared it to other known TFPs using phylogenetic techniques. The analysis shows that TFP 3D structures group in different categories according to function. Prod1 clusters with other cell surface protein TFP domains including the complement regulator CD59 and the C-terminal domain of urokinase-type plasminogen activator. To infer orthology, a structure-based multiple sequence alignment of representative TFP family members was built and analyzed by phylogenetic methods. Prod1 has been proposed to be the salamander CD59 but our analysis fails to support this association. Prod1 is not a good match for any of the TFP families present in mammals and this result was further supported by the identification of the putative orthologs of both CD59 and N. viridescens Prod1 in sequence data for the salamander Ambystoma tigrinum. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The available data suggest that Prod1, and thereby its role in encoding PD identity, is restricted to salamanders. The lack of comparable limb-regenerative capability in other adult vertebrates could be

  16. New species of salamander (Caudata: Plethodontidae: Cryptotriton) from Quebrada Cataguana, Francisco Morazán, Honduras, with comments on the taxonomic status of Cryptotriton wakei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mccranie, James R; Rovito, Sean M

    2014-05-09

    We describe a new species of the plethodontid salamander genus Cryptotriton from Honduras after comparing morphological, molecular, and osteological data from the holotype to that of the other nominal forms of the genus. The new species differs from all of the known species of Cryptotriton in at least one character from all three datasets. We also suggest placing C. wakei in the synonymy of C. nasalis after examining the morphological and osteological characters of the single known specimen of C. wakei.

  17. Fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra in Larzac plateau: low occurrence, pond-breeding and cohabitation of larvae with paedomorphic palmate newts (Lissotriton helveticus

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    Mathieu Denoël

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Alternative reproductive strategies are widespread in caudate amphibians. Among them, fire salamanders (Salamandra salamandra usually rely on streams to give birth to aquatic larvae but also use ponds, whereas palmate newt larvae (Lissotriton helveticus typically metamorphose into terrestrial juveniles, but can also reproduce in retaining their gills, a process known as paedomorphosis. Here we report repeated observations of an unusual case of coexistence of these two alternative traits in the same pond (Larzac, France. The prevalence of fire salamanders in Southern Larzac was very low (pond occupancy: 0.36%. The observed abundance of fire salamander larvae and paedomorphic newts was also low in the studied pond. On one hand, the rarity of this coexistence pattern may suggest that habitat characteristics may not be optimal or that competition or predation processes might be operating. However, these hypotheses remain to be tested. On the other hand, as this is the only known case of breeding in Southern Larzac, it could be considered to be at a high risk of extirpation.

  18. Description of novel microsatellite loci in the Neotropical fish Prochilodus argenteus and cross-amplification in P. costatus and P. lineatus

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    Anna C.D.R. Barbosa

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Prochilodus is one of the most important fish resources of South America, in addition to the important role it plays in nutrient cycling of Neotropical rivers. In the present study, we describe the isolation and characterization of nine novel microsatellite loci in Prochilodus argenteus. The number of alleles per polymorphic locus varied from 5 (Par76 to 21 (Par85, revealing a total of 116 alleles. The values of observed and expected heterozygosities ranged from 0.629 (Par69 to 0.926 (Par85 and Par86 and from 0.643 (Par66 to 0.931 (Par80, respectively. Furthermore, the ability of these and other previously described microsatellite markers to amplify orthologous loci was tested in two related species, Prochilodus costatus and Prochilodus lineatus. These loci will be useful for studies of population genetic structure in this group of fishes, and in aiding future genetic mapping studies of P. argenteus.

  19. Distribution, survivorship and mortality sources in immature stages of the neotropical leaf miner Pachyschelus coeruleipennis Kerremans (Coleoptera: Buprestidae

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    QUEIROZ J. M.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Distribution, sources of mortality, and survivorship of immatures was investigated during the reproductive season of the neotropical buprestid leaf miner, Pachyschelus coeruleipennis, that burrows in leaves of Croton floribundus (Euphorbiaceae in SE, Brazil. Immature distribution was investigated by a random sample of 120 shrubs of C. floribundus growing along forest edges. Marked leaves were followed to recorded sources of mortality and survivorship of immature stages. Females lay their eggs preferentially in the young leaves of the host plant, with mines and pupal cells having been found on the middle part of plants. Densities of eggs, active mines, and pupal cells were, respectively, 25 ± 2, 6 ± 1, and 1 ± 0.3 per 100 leaves. Predators and parasitoids accounted for the majority of losses in the immature P. coeruleipennis population. Mortality was 3 times lower in the egg stage than in the last larval instar. Predation rate was greater than parasitism but the latter increased much more during the development of immatures. Survivorship and sources of mortality were different between early and late season sample of leaf-miner immatures. Parasitism rate was greater in the late-season whereas predation was greater in early-season samples. These results are compared with mortality patterns described for other buprestid leaf miners in temperate and tropical regions.

  20. Early larvae ontogeny of the Neotropical fishes: Prochilodus costatus and P. argenteus (Characiformes: Prochilodontidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    dos Santos, José Enemir; Sales, Naiara Guimarães; dos Santos, Marcella Lourenço; Arantes, Fábio Pereira; Godinho, Hugo Pereira

    2016-06-01

    Early development of fish larvae is a highly dynamic process and its study may provide important information about ontogenetic development, bioenergetic growth, behaviour, taxonomic characteristics for identification in natural environments, identification of spawning areas, and population monitoring. With the aim to provide knowledge about their growth and behaviour, to support larval rearing, and also taxonomic purposes, we studied the life history of the Prochilodus argenteus and P. costatus from hatching until the complete absorption of the yolk. Larvae were obtained through artificial reproduction at the Hydrobiology and Aquaculture Station of Três Marias, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Immediately after hatching, 100 larvae of each species were put in two plastic incubators for conditioning. On a daily basis, larvae behavior was recorded and 14 larvae of each species were collected to analyse body morphology. On the first day after hatching, larvae of P. costatus and P. argenteus showed an elongated and transparent body; the yolk sac was filled with individualized yolk globules. In both species, the embryonic fin rounded the caudal region of the body, the retina was non-pigmented and the gut was obliterated. At the second day post-hatching, larvae of both species dendritic chromatophores had emerged, the mouth was obliterated and the pectoral fin was observed. The larvae showed 38-43 myomeres in P. costatus and 42-43 in P. argenteus. For both species, the gas bladder was inflated and the lumen of the gut was already open. On the third day post-hatching, the mouth of P. costatus and P. argenteus was already open in a sub-terminal position; the retina was pigmented; the gill arches had lamellar protrusions and were partially covered by the operculum. On the fourth day post-hatching, the pigmentation pattern was maintained with greater intensity; the mouth occupied a terminal position, the yolk sac was almost completely reabsorbed, and the pectoral and caudal fins

  1. Reservoirs and human well being: new challenges for evaluating impacts and benefits in the neotropics

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    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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. First Record of Scirtidae (Coleoptera Associated With Decaying Carcasses in the Neotropical Region

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    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.

  5. 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 ...

  6. 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.

  7. Breeding bird populations in Missouri Ozark forests with and without clearcutting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank R., III Thompson; William D. Dijak; Thomas G. Kulowiec; David A. Hamilton

    1992-01-01

    Concern has arisen that forest management practices that create edge (such as clearcutting) are contributing to regional declines in neotropical migrant birds that inhabit forest interiors. Consequently, we studied breeding bird populations in an extensively forested region of southern Missouri to determine if the numbers of breeding birds differed between areas (n = 9...

  8. Impoundment effects in the population of Auchenipterus osteomystax (Siluriformes: Auchenipteridae: a Neotropical reservoir case

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    Elcio Barili

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available New impoundments provide opportunities to check whether species that present enough feeding flexibility in natural conditions may take advantage of this situation and, without reproductive restriction, can occupy the most conspicuous habitat in a large reservoir (open areas and present higher success in the colonization of the new environment. We examined variations in the abundance and feeding of A. osteomystax in two environments, one natural (Sinha Mariana floodplain lake and one dammed (Manso Reservoir, during two periods: the first year after the filling phase and three years later. Our goal was to evaluate the occupation of the new hábitat (Manso Reservoir, by this species, as well as to test the hypothesis that in the reservoir, unlike the natural environment, there are remarkable changes in diet between the periods. Fish were sampled monthly in the floodplain lake and in the reservoir during two annual periods using gillnets. To evaluate the differences in abundance of A. osteomystax we employed the Kruskal -Wallis test, and the diet analysis was carried out using frequency of occurrence and volumetric methods. Temporal differences in the diet were tested by Kruskal-Wallis test using the scores from a detrended correspondence analysis. A. osteomystax was significantly more abundant in the floodplain lake, where the captures were higher than in the reservoir in almost all months analyzed, and significant variations in abundance between the two periods were not recorded in either the reservoir or the floodplain lake. The diet variation between the two periods, which had a time lag of three years between them, was much less pronounced in the natural environment, where the resource availability is essentially regulated by seasonality. Thus, our hypothesis was accepted; that is, the interannual variations in the diet of A. osteomystax are more relevant in an artificial environment than in a natural one. Rev. Biol. Trop. 60 (2: 699-708. Epub 2012 June 01.

  9. Impoundment effects in the population of Auchenipterus osteomystax (Siluriformes: Auchenipteridae: a Neotropical reservoir case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elcio Barili

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available New impoundments provide opportunities to check whether species that present enough feeding flexibility in natural conditions may take advantage of this situation and, without reproductive restriction, can occupy the most conspicuous habitat in a large reservoir (open areas and present higher success in the colonization of the new environment. We examined variations in the abundance and feeding of A. osteomystax in two environments, one natural (Sinha Mariana floodplain lake and one dammed (Manso Reservoir, during two periods: the first year after the filling phase and three years later. Our goal was to evaluate the occupation of the new hábitat (Manso Reservoir, by this species, as well as to test the hypothesis that in the reservoir, unlike the natural environment, there are remarkable changes in diet between the periods. Fish were sampled monthly in the floodplain lake and in the reservoir during two annual periods using gillnets. To evaluate the differences in abundance of A. osteomystax we employed the Kruskal -Wallis test, and the diet analysis was carried out using frequency of occurrence and volumetric methods. Temporal differences in the diet were tested by Kruskal-Wallis test using the scores from a detrended correspondence analysis. A. osteomystax was significantly more abundant in the floodplain lake, where the captures were higher than in the reservoir in almost all months analyzed, and significant variations in abundance between the two periods were not recorded in either the reservoir or the floodplain lake. The diet variation between the two periods, which had a time lag of three years between them, was much less pronounced in the natural environment, where the resource availability is essentially regulated by seasonality. Thus, our hypothesis was accepted; that is, the interannual variations in the diet of A. osteomystax are more relevant in an artificial environment than in a natural one. Rev. Biol. Trop. 60 (2: 699-708. Epub 2012 June 01.Los embalses nuevos ofrecen la oportunidad de comprobar si especies que presentan suficiente flexibilidad en la alimentación en condiciones naturales pueden aprovechar esta situación y, sin restricciones de reproducción, ocupar la mayor parte del hábitat visible en un gran embalse (espacios abiertos, además, presentar un alto éxito en la colonización del nuevo entorno. Asimismo, examinamos variaciones en la abundancia y alimentación de A. osteomystax, en dos ambientes, uno natural (Sinha Mariana floodplain lake y otro alterado (Embalse Manso, durante dos periodos: el primer ano después de la fase de llenado y tres años más tarde. Nuestro objetivo fue evaluar la ocupación del nuevo hábitat (Embalse Manso por esta especie, así como probar la hipótesis de que en el embalse, a diferencia del ambiente natural, se producen cambios notables en la dieta entre los periodos. Los peces fueron muestreados mensualmente en el lago de la planicie de inundación y en el embalse durante dos periodos anuales con redes de enmalle. Para evaluar las diferencias en la abundancia de A. osteomystax empleamos la prueba de Kruskal-Wallis, y el análisis de la dieta se llevo a cabo con el uso de la frecuencia de ocurrencia y métodos volumétricos. Las diferencias temporales en la dieta fueron probadas con Kruskal-Wallis, se usaron los resultados a partir de un análisis de correspondencia sin tendencia. A. osteomystax fue significativamente más abundante en el lago de la llanura de inundación, donde las capturas fueron más altas, que en el embalse en casi todos los meses analizados, y no se registraron variaciones significativas en la abundancia entre los dos periodos tanto en el embalse como en el lago de inundación. La variación en la dieta entre los dos periodos, en los cuales habia un desfase de tres anos entre ellos, fue mucho menos pronunciada en el entorno natural, donde la disponibilidad de recursos es esencialmente regulada por la estacionalidad. Por lo tanto, nuestra hipótesis fue aceptada, es decir, las variaciones interanuales en la dieta de A. osteomystax son más relevantes en un ambiente artificial que en uno natural.

  10. Understanding Demographic and Behavioral Mechanisms that Guide Responses of Neotropical Migratory Birds to Urbanization: a Simulation Approach

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    Daniel P. Shustack

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Although studies often report that densities of many forest birds are negatively related to urbanization, the mechanisms guiding this pattern are poorly understood. Our objective was to use a population simulation to examine the relative influence of six demographic and behavioral processes on patterns of avian abundance in urbanizing landscapes. We constructed an individual-based population simulation model representing the annual cycle of a Neotropical migratory songbird. Each simulation was performed under two landscape scenarios. The first scenario had similar proportions of high- and low-quality habitat across the urban to rural gradient. Under the first scenario, avian density was negatively related to urbanization only when rural habitats were perceived to be of higher quality than they actually were. The second landscape scenario had declining proportions of high-quality habitat as urbanization increased. Under the second scenario, each mechanism generated a negative relationship between density and urbanization. The strongest effect on density resulted when birds preferentially selected habitats in landscapes from which they fledged or were constrained from dispersing. The next strongest patterns occurred when birds directly evaluated habitat quality and accurately selected the highest-quality available territories. When birds selected habitats based on the presence of conspecifics, the density-urbanization relationship was only one-third the strength of other habitat selection mechanisms and only occurred under certain levels of population survival. Although differences in adult or nest survival in the face of random habitat selection still elicited reduced densities in urban landscapes, the relationships between urbanization and density were weaker than those produced by the conspecific attraction mechanism. Results from our study identify key predictions and areas for future research, including assessing habitat quality in urban and

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Monitoring neotropical migrants on managed lands: when, where, why

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sam Droege

    1993-01-01

    Relevant wildlife monitoring on managed lands lies somewhere between monitoring everything and monitoring nothing. Knowing the population status of all birds on a managed area would be potentially useful information but would be costly to collect, but without monitoring no link between management and wildlife populations can be made. A decision making process for...

  15. Biogeographic and diversification patterns of Neotropical Troidini butterflies (Papilionidae support a museum model of diversity dynamics for Amazonia

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    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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Selection, diversity and evolutionary patterns of the MHC class II DAB in free-ranging Neotropical marsupials

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    Otten Celine

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Research on the genetic architecture and diversity of the MHC has focused mainly on eutherian mammals, birds and fish. So far, studies on model marsupials used in laboratory investigations indicated very little or even no variation in MHC class II genes. However, natural levels of diversity and selection are unknown in marsupials as studies on wild populations are virtually absent. We used two endemic South American mouse opossums, Gracilinanus microtarsus and Marmosops incanus, to investigate characteristic features of MHC selection. This study is the first investigation of MHC selection in free-ranging Neotropical marsupials. In addition, the evolutionary history of MHC lineages within the group of marsupials was examined. Results G. microtarsus showed extensive levels of MHC diversity within and among individuals as 47 MHC-DAB alleles and high levels of sequence divergence were detected at a minimum of four loci. Positively selected codon sites were identified, of which most were congruent with human antigen binding sites. The diversity in M. incanus was rather low with only eight observed alleles at presumably two loci. However, these alleles also revealed high sequence divergence. Again, positive selection was identified on specific codon sites, all congruent with human ABS and with positively selected sites observed in G. microtarsus. In a phylogenetic comparison alleles of M. incanus interspersed widely within alleles of G. microtarsus with four alleles being present in both species. Conclusion Our investigations revealed extensive MHC class II polymorphism in a natural marsupial population, contrary to previous assumptions. Furthermore, our study confirms for the first time in marsupials the presence of three characteristic features common at MHC loci of eutherian mammals, birds and fish: large allelic sequence divergence, positive selection on specific sites and trans-specific polymorphism.

  19. Multispecies coalescent analysis of the early diversification of neotropical primates: phylogenetic inference under strong gene trees/species tree conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrago, Carlos G; Menezes, Albert N; Furtado, Carolina; Bonvicino, Cibele R; Seuanez, Hector N

    2014-11-05

    Neotropical primates (NP) are presently distributed in the New World from Mexico to northern Argentina, comprising three large families, Cebidae, Atelidae, and Pitheciidae, consequently to their diversification following their separation from Old World anthropoids near the Eocene/Oligocene boundary, some 40 Ma. The evolution of NP has been intensively investigated in the last decade by studies focusing on their phylogeny and timescale. However, despite major efforts, the phylogenetic relationship between these three major clades and the age of their last common ancestor are still controversial because these inferences were based on limited numbers of loci and dating analyses that did not consider the evolutionary variation associated with the distribution of gene trees within the proposed phylogenies. We show, by multispecies coalescent analyses of selected genome segments, spanning along 92,496,904 bp that the early diversification of extant NP was marked by a 2-fold increase of their effective population size and that Atelids and Cebids are more closely related respective to Pitheciids. The molecular phylogeny of NP has been difficult to solve because of population-level phenomena at the early evolution of the lineage. The association of evolutionary variation with the distribution of gene trees within proposed phylogenies is crucial for distinguishing the mean genetic divergence between species (the mean coalescent time between loci) from speciation time. This approach, based on extensive genomic data provided by new generation DNA sequencing, provides more accurate reconstructions of phylogenies and timescales for all organisms. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  20. Temperature and ontogenetic effects on color change in the larval salamander species Ambystoma barbouri and Ambystoma texanum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia, T S; Straus, R; Sih, A [Univ. of Kentucky, Dept. of Biological Sciences, Lexington, Kentucky (United States)

    2003-04-01

    Temperature has been shown to affect body color in several species of amphibians. The interaction between color and temperature may also change over larval ontogeny, perhaps because of age-related or seasonal changes in selection pressures on color. We quantified the effects of temperature on the color of the salamander sister species Ambystoma barbouri and Ambystoma texanum over larval ontogeny. We found that early-stage larvae responded to cold temperatures with a dark color relative to that of the warm temperature response. Both species then exhibited an ontogenetic shift in larval color, with larvae becoming lighter with age. Interestingly, older larvae showed decreased plasticity in color change to temperature when compared with younger stages. Older A. texanum larvae exhibited a reversal in the direction of color change, with cold temperatures inducing a lighter color relative to warm temperatures. We suggest that the overall pattern of color change (a plastic color response to temperature for young larvae, a progressive lightening of larvae over development, and an apparent loss of color plasticity to temperature over ontogeny) can be plausibly explained by seasonal changes in environmental factors (temperature, ultraviolet radiation) selecting for body color. (author)

  1. Initial characterization of the large genome of the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum using shotgun and laser capture chromosome sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keinath, Melissa C; Timoshevskiy, Vladimir A; Timoshevskaya, Nataliya Y; Tsonis, Panagiotis A; Voss, S Randal; Smith, Jeramiah J

    2015-11-10

    Vertebrates exhibit substantial diversity in genome size, and some of the largest genomes exist in species that uniquely inform diverse areas of basic and biomedical research. For example, the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum (the Mexican axolotl) is a model organism for studies of regeneration, development and genome evolution, yet its genome is ~10× larger than the human genome. As part of a hierarchical approach toward improving genome resources for the species, we generated 600 Gb of shotgun sequence data and developed methods for sequencing individual laser-captured chromosomes. Based on these data, we estimate that the A. mexicanum genome is ~32 Gb. Notably, as much as 19 Gb of the A. mexicanum genome can potentially be considered single copy, which presumably reflects the evolutionary diversification of mobile elements that accumulated during an ancient episode of genome expansion. Chromosome-targeted sequencing permitted the development of assemblies within the constraints of modern computational platforms, allowed us to place 2062 genes on the two smallest A. mexicanum chromosomes and resolves key events in the history of vertebrate genome evolution. Our analyses show that the capture and sequencing of individual chromosomes is likely to provide valuable information for the systematic sequencing, assembly and scaffolding of large genomes.

  2. Sixty-Five Million Years of Change in Temperature and Topography Explain Evolutionary History in Eastern North American Plethodontid Salamanders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Richard; Clark, Adam Thomas

    2017-07-01

    For many taxa and systems, species richness peaks at midelevations. One potential explanation for this pattern is that large-scale changes in climate and geography have, over evolutionary time, selected for traits that are favored under conditions found in contemporary midelevation regions. To test this hypothesis, we use records of historical temperature and topographic changes over the past 65 Myr to construct a general simulation model of plethodontid salamander evolution in eastern North America. We then explore possible mechanisms constraining species to midelevation bands by using the model to predict plethodontid evolutionary history and contemporary geographic distributions. Our results show that models that incorporate both temperature and topographic changes are better able to predict these patterns, suggesting that both processes may have played an important role in driving plethodontid evolution in the region. Additionally, our model (whose annotated source code is included as a supplement) represents a proof of concept to encourage future work that takes advantage of recent advances in computing power to combine models of ecology, evolution, and earth history to better explain the abundance and distribution of species over time.

  3. The effects of food level and conspecific density on biting and cannibalism in larval long-toed salamanders, Ambystoma macrodactylum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wildy, Erica L; Chivers, Douglas P; Kiesecker, Joseph M; Blaustein, Andrew R

    2001-07-01

    Previous studies have examined abiotic and biotic factors that facilitate agonistic behavior. For larval amphibians, food availability and conspecific density have been suggested as important factors influencing intraspecific aggression and cannibalism. In this study, we examined the separate and combined effects of food availability and density on the agonistic behavior and life history of larval long-toed salamanders, Ambystoma macrodactylum. We designed a 2×2 factorial experiment in which larvae were raised with either a high or low density of conspecifics and fed either a high or low level of food. For each treatment, we quantified the amount of group size variation, biting, and cannibalism occurring. Additionally, we examined survival to, time to and size at metamorphosis for all larvae. Results indicated that differences in both density and food level influenced all three life history traits measured. Moreover, differences in food level at which larvae were reared resulted in higher within-group size variation and heightened intraspecific biting while both density and food level contributed to increased cannibalism. We suggest that increased hunger levels and an uneven size structure promoted biting among larvae in the low food treatments. Moreover, these factors combined with a higher encounter rate with conspecifics in the high density treatments may have prompted larger individuals to seek an alternative food source in the form of smaller conspecifics.

  4. Temperature and ontogenetic effects on color change in the larval salamander species Ambystoma barbouri and Ambystoma texanum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia, T.S.; Straus, R.; Sih, A.

    2003-01-01

    Temperature has been shown to affect body color in several species of amphibians. The interaction between color and temperature may also change over larval ontogeny, perhaps because of age-related or seasonal changes in selection pressures on color. We quantified the effects of temperature on the color of the salamander sister species Ambystoma barbouri and Ambystoma texanum over larval ontogeny. We found that early-stage larvae responded to cold temperatures with a dark color relative to that of the warm temperature response. Both species then exhibited an ontogenetic shift in larval color, with larvae becoming lighter with age. Interestingly, older larvae showed decreased plasticity in color change to temperature when compared with younger stages. Older A. texanum larvae exhibited a reversal in the direction of color change, with cold temperatures inducing a lighter color relative to warm temperatures. We suggest that the overall pattern of color change (a plastic color response to temperature for young larvae, a progressive lightening of larvae over development, and an apparent loss of color plasticity to temperature over ontogeny) can be plausibly explained by seasonal changes in environmental factors (temperature, ultraviolet radiation) selecting for body color. (author)

  5. Environmental DNA method for estimating salamander distribution in headwater streams, and a comparison of water sampling methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katano, Izumi; Harada, Ken; Doi, Hideyuki; Souma, Rio; Minamoto, Toshifumi

    2017-01-01

    Environmental DNA (eDNA) has recently been used for detecting the distribution of macroorganisms in various aquatic habitats. In this study, we applied an eDNA method to estimate the distribution of the Japanese clawed salamander, Onychodactylus japonicus, in headwater streams. Additionally, we compared the detection of eDNA and hand-capturing methods used for determining the distribution of O. japonicus. For eDNA detection, we designed a qPCR primer/probe set for O. japonicus using the 12S rRNA region. We detected the eDNA of O. japonicus at all sites (with the exception of one), where we also observed them by hand-capturing. Additionally, we detected eDNA at two sites where we were unable to observe individuals using the hand-capturing method. Moreover, we found that eDNA concentrations and detection rates of the two water sampling areas (stream surface and under stones) were not significantly different, although the eDNA concentration in the water under stones was more varied than that on the surface. We, therefore, conclude that eDNA methods could be used to determine the distribution of macroorganisms inhabiting headwater systems by using samples collected from the surface of the water.

  6. The effect of structural enrichment in hatchery tanks on the morphology of two neotropical fish species

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    Sarah de Oliveira Saraiva

    Full Text Available Reared fish differ from wild fish in several aspects, including morphology, because they are adapted to captive conditions that are totally different from natural conditions. To minimize the influence of the hatchery environment on the morphology of fish, the use of environmental enrichment through the incorporation of natural designs in captivity, has been proposed. In the present study, we performed the physical structuring of fish farming tanks to verify the enrichment effect on the morphology of two species of neotropical fishes: Prochilodus lineatus and Brycon orbignyanus. Each species was subjected to four different treatments over two months: tanks with submersed logs, with artificial aquatic plants, with both structures and without any structure. Results showed that the structural enrichment had a strong effect on the morphology of the cultured fish, which varied with each species analyzed and with the type of structural complexity added to the tanks. There was an increase of morphological variability in the population of P. lineatus and an increase of the average length in the population of B. orbignyanus. This shows that the environmental enrichment is capable to induce morphological differentiation through phenotypic plasticity, probably generating phenotypes more adapted to exploiting a complex environment. Peixes cultivados diferem de peixes selvagens em vários aspectos, incluindo morfologia, pois são adaptados às condições de cativeiro, que são totalmente diferentes das condições naturais. Para minimizar a influência do meio de cultivo sobre a morfologia dos peixes, o enriquecimento ambiental, através da incorporação de 'designs' naturais em cativeiro, tem sido proposto. No presente estudo, foi realizada a estruturação física de tanques de piscicultura para verificar o efeito deste tipo de enriquecimento ambiental sobre a morfologia de duas espécies de peixes neotropicais: Prochilodus lineatus e Brycon orbignyanus

  7. Genetic characterization of Neotropical Jabiru Storks: Insights for conservation

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    Lopes, I.F.; Haig, S.M.; Lama, S.N.D.

    2010-01-01

    Jabiru Stork (Jabiru mycteria is listed under Appendix I of CITES and considered threatened in Central America. The first population genetic analysis of Jabiru Storks was carried out using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region sequences (520 bp) and five heterologous microsatellite loci. Samples were collected from the field (N = 49) and museum skins (N = 22) in Central (mainly Belize, Nicaragua and Costa Rica) and South America (Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Brazil). A decline of mtDNA diversity was observed in comparisons between past (N = 20) and present (N = 40) samples collected in Central America and northern South America. Similar levels of microsatellite loci diversity were observed among contemporary samples. Lower levels of mtDNA variability were observed in samples from Central America and northern South America when compared to the Brazilian Pantanal region. Significant levels of genetic differentiation were found between contemporary locations sampled, whereas non-significant results were observed for historic samples. The non-geographic association of haplotypes observed at the cladograms and the recent divergence times estimated between locations are indicative of an evolutionary history of a large population size with limited population structure. Reconnection of populations via increased gene flow, particularly in Central America, is recommended if genetic structure and status are to be restored.

  8. Novas espécies de Prioninae e de Cerambycinae (Cerambycidae da Região Neotropical New Neotropical species of Prioninae and Cerambycinae (Cerambycidae

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    Maria Helena M. Galileo

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available 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 from Costa Rica; Stenoeme aguilari sp. nov. from Paraguai and Placoeme wappesi sp. nov. from Bolivia (Oemini; from Bahia, Brazil: Coeloxestia spinosa sp. nov. (Cerambycini, Sphallotrichina, Stizocera debilis sp. nov., Anelaphus bravoi sp. nov. (Elaphidionini and Chydarteres formosus sp. nov. (Trachyderini.

  9. Notes on Neotropical Eumeninae, with the description of a new species of Pachodynerus de Saussure (Hymenoptera, Vespidae

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    Marcel Gustavo Hermes

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Notes on Neotropical Eumeninae, with the description of a new species of Pachodynerus de Saussure (Hymenoptera, Vespidae. Taxonomic information on Neotropical Eumeninae is provided. A new species, Pachodynerus fessatus sp. nov. is described from southeastern São Paulo, Brazil. Additional material of Pachodynerus sericeus (Fox was examined, representing the first further specimens after the original description and including the previously unknown male. The examination of new material of the genus Stenonartonia adds some new distribution records and shows some previously unrecorded individual variation for some species. The males of Stenonartonia guaraya Garcete-Barrett and Stenonartonia rejectoides Garcete-Barrett are described for the first time.

  10. DNA barcoding and morphological identification of neotropical ichthyoplankton from the Upper Paraná and São Francisco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, R A; Sales, N G; Santos, G M; Santos, G B; Carvalho, D C

    2015-07-01

    The identification of fish larvae from two neotropical hydrographic basins using traditional morphological taxonomy and DNA barcoding revealed no conflicting results between the morphological and barcode identification of larvae. A lower rate (25%) of correct morphological identification of eggs as belonging to migratory or non-migratory species was achieved. Accurate identification of ichthyoplankton by DNA barcoding is an important tool for fish reproductive behaviour studies, correct estimation of biodiversity by detecting eggs from rare species, as well as defining environmental and management strategies for fish conservation in the neotropics. © 2015 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  11. The hyporheic zone and its functions: revision and research status in Neotropical regions

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    R Mugnai

    Full Text Available AbstractThe hyporheic zone (HZ, as the connecting ecotone between surface- and groundwater, is functionally part of both fluvial and groundwater ecosystems. Its hydrological, chemical, biological and metabolic features are specific of this zone, not belonging truly neither to surface- nor to groundwater. Exchanges of water, nutrients, and organic matter occur in response to variations in discharge and bed topography and porosity. Dynamic gradients exist at all scales and vary temporally. Across all scales, the functional significance of the HZ relates to its activity and connection with the surface stream. The HZ is a relatively rich environment and almost all invertebrate groups have colonized this habitat. This fauna, so-called hyporheos, is composed of species typical from interstitial environment, and also of benthic epigean and phreatic species. The hyporheic microbiocenose consists in bacteria, archaea, protozoa and fungi. The HZ provides several ecosystem services, playing a pivotal role in mediating exchange processes, including both matter and energy, between surface and subterranean ecosystems, functioning as regulator of water flow, benthic invertebrates refuge and place of storage, source and transformation of organic matter. The hyporheic zone is one of the most threatened aquatic environments, being strongly influenced by human activities, and the least protected by legislation worldwide. Its maintenance and conservation is compelling in order to preserve the ecological interconnectivity among the three spatial dimensions of the aquatic environment. Although several researchers addressed the importance of the hyporheic zone early, and most contemporary stream ecosystem models explicitly include it, very little is known about the HZ of Neotropical regions. From a biological standpoint, hyporheos fauna in Neotropical regions are still largely underestimated. This review focuses on a brief presentation of the hyporheic zone and its

  12. The hyporheic zone and its functions: revision and research status in Neotropical regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mugnai, R; Messana, G; Di Lorenzo, T

    2015-08-01

    The hyporheic zone (HZ), as the connecting ecotone between surface- and groundwater, is functionally part of both fluvial and groundwater ecosystems. Its hydrological, chemical, biological and metabolic features are specific of this zone, not belonging truly neither to surface- nor to groundwater. Exchanges of water, nutrients, and organic matter occur in response to variations in discharge and bed topography and porosity. Dynamic gradients exist at all scales and vary temporally. Across all scales, the functional significance of the HZ relates to its activity and connection with the surface stream. The HZ is a relatively rich environment and almost all invertebrate groups have colonized this habitat. This fauna, so-called hyporheos, is composed of species typical from interstitial environment, and also of benthic epigean and phreatic species. The hyporheic microbiocenose consists in bacteria, archaea, protozoa and fungi. The HZ provides several ecosystem services, playing a pivotal role in mediating exchange processes, including both matter and energy, between surface and subterranean ecosystems, functioning as regulator of water flow, benthic invertebrates refuge and place of storage, source and transformation of organic matter. The hyporheic zone is one of the most threatened aquatic environments, being strongly influenced by human activities, and the least protected by legislation worldwide. Its maintenance and conservation is compelling in order to preserve the ecological interconnectivity among the three spatial dimensions of the aquatic environment. Although several researchers addressed the importance of the hyporheic zone early, and most contemporary stream ecosystem models explicitly include it, very little is known about the HZ of Neotropical regions. From a biological standpoint, hyporheos fauna in Neotropical regions are still largely underestimated. This review focuses on a brief presentation of the hyporheic zone and its functions and significance as

  13. Habitat shifts in the evolutionary history of a Neotropical flycatcher lineage from forest and open landscapes

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    Christidis Les

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little is known about the role ecological shifts play in the evolution of Neotropical radiations that have colonized a variety of environments. We here examine habitat shifts in the evolutionary history of Elaenia flycatchers, a Neotropical bird lineage that lives in a range of forest and open habitats. We evaluate phylogenetic relationships within the genus based on mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data, and then employ parsimony-based and Bayesian methods to reconstruct preferences for a number of habitat types and migratory behaviour throughout the evolutionary history of the genus. Using a molecular clock approach, we date the most important habitat shifts. Results Our analyses resolve phylogenetic relationships among Elaenia species and confirm several species associations predicted by morphology while furnishing support for other taxon placements that are in conflict with traditional classification, such as the elevation of various Elaenia taxa to species level. While savannah specialism is restricted to one basal clade within the genus, montane forest was invaded from open habitat only on a limited number of occasions. Riparian growth may have been favoured early on in the evolution of the main Elaenia clade and subsequently been deserted on several occasions. Austral long-distance migratory behaviour evolved on several occasions. Conclusion Ancestral reconstructions of habitat preferences reveal pronounced differences not only in the timing of the emergence of certain habitat preferences, but also in the frequency of habitat shifts. The early origin of savannah specialism in Elaenia highlights the importance of this habitat in Neotropical Pliocene and late Miocene biogeography. While forest in old mountain ranges such as the Tepuis and the Brazilian Shield was colonized early on, the most important colonization event of montane forest was in conjunction with Pliocene Andean uplift. Riparian habitats may have

  14. New taxa, including three new genera show uniqueness of Neotropical Nepticulidae (Lepidoptera

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    Erik van Nieukerken

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available 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 genera and nine new species are here described from the Neotropics: Stigmella gallicola van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. reared from galls on Hampea appendiculata (Malvaceae in Costa Rica, representing the first example of a gall making Stigmella; S. schinivora van Nieukerken, sp. n. reared from leafmines on Schinus terebinthifolia (Anacardiaceae in Argentina, Misiones; S. costaricensis van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. and S. intronia van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. each from a single specimen collected the same night in Costa Rica, Parque Nacional Chirripó; S. molinensis van Nieukerken & Snyers, sp. n. reared from leafmines on Salix humboldtiana, Peru, Lima, the first Neotropical species of the Stigmella salicis group sensu stricto; Ozadelpha van Nieukerken, gen. n. with type species O. conostegiae van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n., reared from leafmines on Conostegia oerstediana (Melastomataceae from Costa Rica; Neotrifurcula van Nieukerken, gen. n. with type species N. gielisorum van Nieukerken, sp. n. from Chile; Hesperolyra van Nieukerken, gen. n.. with type species Fomoria diskusi Puplesis & Robinson, 2000; Hesperolyra saopaulensis van Nieukerken, sp. n., reared from an unidentified Myrtaceae, Sao Paulo, Brasil; and Acalyptris janzeni van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. from Costa Rica, Guanacaste. Five new combinations are made: Ozadelpha ovata (Puplesis & Robinson, 2000, comb. n. and Ozadelpha guajavae (Puplesis & Diškus, 2002, comb. n., Hesperolyra diskusi (Puplesis & Robinson, 2000, comb. n., Hesperolyra molybditis (Zeller, 1877, comb. n. and Hesperolyra repanda (Puplesis & Diškus, 2002, comb. n. Three specimens are briefly described, but

  15. New taxa, including three new genera show uniqueness of Neotropical Nepticulidae (Lepidoptera)

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    van Nieukerken, Erik J.; Doorenweerd, Camiel; Nishida, Kenji; Snyers, Chris

    2016-01-01

    Abstract 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 genera and nine new species are here described from the Neotropics: Stigmella gallicola van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. reared from galls on Hampea appendiculata (Malvaceae) in Costa Rica, representing the first example of a gall making Stigmella; Stigmella schinivora van Nieukerken, sp. n. reared from leafmines on Schinus terebinthifolia (Anacardiaceae) in Argentina, Misiones; Stigmella costaricensis van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. and Stigmella intronia van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. each from a single specimen collected the same night in Costa Rica, Parque Nacional Chirripó; Stigmella molinensis van Nieukerken & Snyers, sp. n. reared from leafmines on Salix humboldtiana, Peru, Lima, the first Neotropical species of the Stigmella salicis group sensu stricto; Ozadelpha van Nieukerken, gen. n. with type species Ozadelpha conostegiae van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n., reared from leafmines on Conostegia oerstediana (Melastomataceae) from Costa Rica; Neotrifurcula van Nieukerken, gen. n. with type species Neotrifurcula gielisorum van Nieukerken, sp. n. from Chile; Hesperolyra van Nieukerken, gen. n.. with type species Fomoria diskusi Puplesis & Robinson, 2000; Hesperolyra saopaulensis van Nieukerken, sp. n., reared from an unidentified Myrtaceae, Sao Paulo, Brasil; and Acalyptris janzeni van Nieukerken & Nishida, sp. n. from Costa Rica, Guanacaste. Five new combinations are made: Ozadelpha ovata (Puplesis & Robinson, 2000), comb. n. and Ozadelpha guajavae (Puplesis & Diškus, 2002), comb. n., Hesperolyra diskusi (Puplesis & Robinson, 2000), comb. n., Hesperolyra molybditis (Zeller, 1877), comb. n. and Hesperolyra repanda (Puplesis & Diškus, 2002), comb. n

  16. Molecular systematic and historical biogeography of the armored Neotropical catfishes Hypoptopomatinae and Neoplecostominae (Siluriformes: Loricariidae).

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    Chiachio, Márcio Cesar; Oliveira, Claudio; Montoya-Burgos, Juan I

    2008-11-01

    The Neotropics possess the greatest freshwater fish diversity of the world, rendering the study of their evolutionary history extremely challenging. Loricariidae catfishes are one of the most diverse components of the Neotropical ichthyofauna and despite a long history of classification, major issues still need elucidation. Based on a nuclear gene, we present a robust phylogeny of two former loricariid subfamilies: Hypoptopomatinae and Neoplecostominae. Our results show that Neoplecostominae is nested within Hypoptopomatinae, and is the sister group to the former Otothyrini tribe. According to our results, supplemented by morphological observations, we erect two new subfamilies, the Otothyrinae and a new Hypoptopomatinae, and modify the Neoplecostominae by including the genus Pseudotocinclus. The uncovered evolutionary relationships allow a detailed analysis of their historical biogeography. We tested two Dispersal-Extinction-Cladogenesis models for inferring the distribution range evolution of the new subfamilies, and show that the model having no constrains performs better than a model constraining long-range dispersal. The Maximum Likelihood reconstructions of ancestral ranges showed a marked division between the Amazonian origin of the Hypoptopomatinae and the eastern coastal Brazil+Upper Paraná origin of the Neoplecostominae and Otothyrinae. Markedly few instances of dispersal across the border separating the Amazon basin and the Paraná-Paraguay+eastern coastal Brazil+Uruguay were reconstructed. This result is in clear contrast with the historical biogeography of many Neotropical fishes, including other Loricariidae. Part of the dispersal limitation may be explained by divergent ecological specialization: lowland rivers versus mountain streams habitats. Moreover, because most species of the new subfamilies are small, we hypothesize that body size-related effects might limit their dispersal, like predation and energetic cost to migration. Finally

  17. A new moss salamander, genus Nototriton (Caudata: Plethodontidae), from the Cordillera de Talamanca, in the Costa Rica-Panama border region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arias, Erick; Kubicki, Brian

    2018-01-07

    A new salamander belonging to the genus Nototriton, subgenus Nototriton, is described from the Caribbean slopes of the southeastern Cordillera de Talamanca in Costa Rica, within Parque Internacional La Amistad, at an elevation ca. 1500 m a.s.l. This new taxon is distinguished from its congeners by its morphological characteristics and by its differentiation in DNA sequences of the 16S rRNA, cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI), and cytochrome b mitochondrial genes. This new species represents the southernmost extension known for the genus Nototriton.

  18. [New species, newly used names and new ranges of tree ferns (Filicales: Cyatheaceae) in the Neotropics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas-Alvarado, A F

    2001-06-01

    Two new species are described for the Neotropics, four species are newly accepted, and four species and one variety are reported. The new species are: Cyathea grayumii A. Rojas and C. panamensis A. Rojas. Cyathea alfonsiana L. D. Gómez, C. holdridgeana Nisman & L. D. Gómez, C. onusta H. Christ and C. squarrosa (Rosenst.) Domin are recognized; Cnemidaria coclena Stolze, Cyathea andina (H. Karst.) Domin, C. caracasana var. meridensis (H. Karst.) R. M. Tryon, C. macrosora (Baker) Domin and C. pseudonanna (L. D. Gómez) Lellinger are reported from Costa Rica and Panama.

  19. Differential Responses of Neotropical Mountain Forests to Climate Change during the Last Millenium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figueroa-Rangel, B. L.; Olvera Vargas, M.

    2013-05-01

    The long-term perspective in the conservation of mountain ecosystems using palaeoecological and paleoclimatological techniques are providing with crucial information for the understanding of the temporal range and variability of ecological pattern and processes. This perception is contributing with means to anticipate future conditions of these ecosystems, especially their response to climate change. Neotropical mountain forests, created by a particular geological and climatic history in the Americas, represent one of the most distinctive ecosystems in the tropics which are constantly subject to disturbances included climate change. Mexico due to its geographical location between the convergence of temperate and tropical elements, its diverse physiography and climatic heterogeneity, contains neotropical ecosystems with high biodiversity and endemicity whose structure and taxonomical composition have changed along centurial to millennial scales. Different neotropical forests expand along the mountain chains of Mexico with particular responses along spatial and temporal scales. Therefore in order to capture these scales at fine resolution, sedimentary sequences from forest hollows were retrieved from three forest at different altitudes within 10 km; Pine forest (PF), Transitional forest (TF) and Cloud forest (CF). Ordination techniques were used to relate changes in vegetation with the environment every ~60 years. The three forests experience the effect of the dry stage ~AD 800-1200 related to the Medieval Warm Period reported for several regions of the world. CF contracted, PF expanded while the TF evolved from CF to a community dominated by dry-resistant epiphytes. Dry periods in PF and TF overlapped with the increase in fire occurrences while a dissimilar pattern took place in CF. Maize, Asteraceae and Poaceae were higher during dry intervals while epiphytes decreased. A humid period ~1200-1450 AD was associated with an expansion and a high taxa turnover in CF

  20. Adventive Vertebrates and Historical Ecology in the Pre-Columbian Neotropics

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    Peter W. Stahl

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The arrival of Europeans in the Western Hemisphere (ca. AD 1500 is generally used as a convenient reference point for signaling the early appearance of invasive faunas. Although use of this date embraces an implicit belief in benign landscape management by pre-Columbian inhabitants of the Americas, substantial evidence for the anthropogenic movement of domesticated, wild, and synanthropic vertebrates throughout the Neotropics suggests that it may be an exaggerated and erroneous reference point for the aims of ecological restoration and biological conservation.

  1. Temporal Dynamics of Reproduction of the Neotropical Fish, Crenicichla menezesi (Perciformes: Cichlidae

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    Andréa Soares de Araújo

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The reproductive biology and the gonadal development cycle of the Neotropical cichlid fish, Crenicichla menezesi, is described. This species exhibits sexual dimorphism only during the spawning season. First sexual maturity of females is attained earlier than the males. Both macroscopic and histological investigations of ovaries and testes revealed four stages of gonadal maturation. Mean batch fecundity of females was 372 (±10,41 of mature oocytes. This species is a partial spawner, with an extended spawning period. Monthly values of GSI and the condition factor are negatively correlated during the gonadal development cycle of this species.

  2. Stage description, new combination and new records of Neotropical Brachycercinae (Ephemeroptera: Caenidae).

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    Angeli, Kamila Batista; Salles, Frederico Falcão; Paresque, Roberta; Molineri, Carlos; Lima, Lucas Ramos Costa

    2016-03-08

    We present taxonomic contributions and new records for Neotropical Brachycercinae based on material from Brazil. We performed a phylogenetic analysis in order to test the relationship between Alloretochus Sun & McCafferty, 2008 and Latineosus Sun & Mc- Cafferty, 2008, and Alloretochus sigillatus was recovered in the Latineosus clade. Therefore, we propose a new combination, Latineosus sigillatus comb. n. The nymph of Latineosus sigillatus is described and is associated with imago through molecular tools. Moreover, Alloretochus peruanicus (Soldán, 1986) is reported for the first time from Brazil.

  3. Mites of the genus Neharpyrhynchus Fain (Acariformes, Harpirhynchidae from Neotropical birds

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    Andre Bochkov

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Three new species of parasitic mites of the genus Neharpyrhynchus Fain (Acariformes, Harpirhynchidae are described from Neotropical birds, N. chlorospingus sp. n. from Chlorospingus pileatus (Passeriformes, Emberizidae from Costa Rica, N. mironovi sp. n. from Dacnys cayana (Passeriformes, Thraupidae and N. tangara sp. n. from Tangara cayana (Thraupidae both from Brazil. Neharpyrhynchus trochilinus (Fain is recorded from 3 new hosts of the family Trochilidae (Apodiformes, Panterpe insignis and Eugenes fulgens from Costa Rica, and Amazilia lactea from Brazil. Emended diagnosis of the genus and a key to species are provided; all records of Neharpyrhynchus species are summarized.

  4. An illustrated key to Neotropical species of the genus Meteorus Haliday (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Euphorinae).

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    Aguirre, Helmuth; de Almeida, Luis Felipe; Shaw, Scott Richard; Sarmiento, Carlos E

    2015-01-01

    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: Meteorusalbistigma, Meteoruscarolae, Meteoruseurysaccavorus, Meteorusfallacavus, Meteorusflavistigma, Meteorushaimowitzi, Meteorusmagnoculus, Meteorusmartinezi, Meteorusmicrocavus, Meteorusnoctuivorus and Meteorusorion. Expanded range distributions are recorded for Meteorusandreae, Meteorusfarallonensis, Meteorusguineverae, Meteorusjerodi, Meteoruskraussi, Meteoruspapiliovorus and Meteorusquimbayensis. The host of Meteorusjerodi is reported for the first time: a noctuid larva feeding on Asteraceae. Meteoruspapiliovorus is recorded attacking Papilionidae larvae in Ecuador, therefore displaying a similar host family preference as formerly documented from Costa Rica and Colombia.

  5. Identification of Plasmodium spp. in Neotropical primates of Maranhense Amazon in Northeast Brazil.

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    Mayra Araguaia Pereira Figueiredo

    Full Text Available In the Brazilian Amazon region, malaria caused by Plasmodium malariae is considered to be a zoonosis because of cross-transfer of the parasite between humans and Neotropical primates. To contribute information on this issue, we investigated occurrences of natural infection with Plasmodium sp. among Neotropical primates in the Maranhense Amazon (Amazon region of the state of Maranhão, in the northeastern region of Brazil. Blood samples were collected from 161 Neotropical primates of six species that were caught in an environmental reserve (Sítio Aguahy and from captive primates (CETAS-Wildlife Screening Center, municipality of São Luís, in Maranhão. Plasmodium sp. was diagnosed based on light microscopy, PCR, qPCR and LAMP for amplification of the 18S rRNA gene. Serum samples were also assayed by means of indirect immunofluorescence for IgG antibodies against P. malariae/P. brasilianum, P. falciparum and P. berghei. Parasites were detected through light microscopy on five slides from captive primates (four Sapajus spp. and one Callithrix jacchus. In the molecular tests, 34.16% (55/161 and 29.81% (48/161 of the animals sampled were positive in the qPCR and PCR assays, respectively. In the PCR, 47/48 animals were positive for P. malariae/P. brasilianum; of these, eight were free-living primates and 39 from CETAS, São Luís. One sample showed a band in the genus-specific reaction, but not in the second PCR reaction. Anti-P. malariae/P. brasilianum IgG antibodies were detected in four serum samples from Sapajus spp. in captivity. In this study, circulation of P. malariae/P. brasilianum in Neotropical primates was confirmed, with low levels of parasitemia and low levels of antibodies. The importance of these animals as reservoirs of human malaria in the region studied is still unknown. This scenario has an impact on control and elimination of malaria in this region.

  6. Potential effects of climate change on the water level, flora and macro-fauna of a large neotropical wetland.

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    Bárbara Úbeda

    Full Text Available Possible consequences of climate change in one of the world's largest wetlands (Ibera, Argentina were analysed using a multi-scale approach. Climate projections coupled to hydrological models were used to analyse variability in wetland water level throughout the current century. Two potential scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions were explored, both resulting in an increase in the inter-annual fluctuations of the water level. In the scenario with higher emissions, projections also showed a long-term negative trend in water-level. To explore the possible response of biota to such water-level changes, species-area relationships of flora and aerial censuses of macro-fauna were analysed during an extraordinary dry period. Plant species richness at the basin scale was found to be highly resistant to hydrological changes, as the large dimension of the wetland acts to buffer against the water-level variations. However, local diversity decreased significantly with low water levels, leading to the loss of ecosystem resilience to additional stressors. The analysis of macro-fauna populations suggested that wetland provides refuge, in low water periods, for the animals with high dispersal ability (aquatic and migratory birds. On the contrary, the abundance of animals with low dispersal ability (mainly herbivorous species was negatively impacted in low water periods, probably because they are required to search for alternative resources beyond the wetland borders. This period of resource scarcity was also related to increased mortality of large mammals (e.g. marsh deer around water bodies with high anthropogenic enrichment and cyanobacteria dominance. The synergy between recurrent climatic fluctuations and additional stressors (i.e. biological invasions, eutrophication presents an important challenge to the conservation of neotropical wetlands in the coming decades.

  7. Potential effects of climate change on the water level, flora and macro-fauna of a large neotropical wetland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Úbeda, Bárbara; Di Giacomo, Adrian S; Neiff, Juan José; Loiselle, Steven A; Poi, Alicia S Guadalupe; Gálvez, José Ángel; Casco, Silvina; Cózar, Andrés

    2013-01-01

    Possible consequences of climate change in one of the world's largest wetlands (Ibera, Argentina) were analysed using a multi-scale approach. Climate projections coupled to hydrological models were used to analyse variability in wetland water level throughout the current century. Two potential scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions were explored, both resulting in an increase in the inter-annual fluctuations of the water level. In the scenario with higher emissions, projections also showed a long-term negative trend in water-level. To explore the possible response of biota to such water-level changes, species-area relationships of flora and aerial censuses of macro-fauna were analysed during an extraordinary dry period. Plant species richness at the basin scale was found to be highly resistant to hydrological changes, as the large dimension of the wetland acts to buffer against the water-level variations. However, local diversity decreased significantly with low water levels, leading to the loss of ecosystem resilience to additional stressors. The analysis of macro-fauna populations suggested that wetland provides refuge, in low water periods, for the animals with high dispersal ability (aquatic and migratory birds). On the contrary, the abundance of animals with low dispersal ability (mainly herbivorous species) was negatively impacted in low water periods, probably because they are required to search for alternative resources beyond the wetland borders. This period of resource scarcity was also related to increased mortality of large mammals (e.g. marsh deer) around water bodies with high anthropogenic enrichment and cyanobacteria dominance. The synergy between recurrent climatic fluctuations and additional stressors (i.e. biological invasions, eutrophication) presents an important challenge to the conservation of neotropical wetlands in the coming decades.

  8. Scale-dependent genetic structure of the Idaho giant salamander (Dicamptodon aterrimus) in stream networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindy B. Mullen; H. Arthur Woods; Michael K. Schwartz; Adam J. Sepulveda; Winsor H. Lowe

    2010-01-01

    The network architecture of streams and rivers constrains evolutionary, demographic and ecological processes of freshwater organisms. This consistent architecture also makes stream networks useful for testing general models of population genetic structure and the scaling of gene flow. We examined genetic structure and gene flow in the facultatively paedomorphic Idaho...

  9. Woodland pond salamander abundance in relation to forest management and environmental conditions in northern Wisconsin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deahn M. Donner; Christine A. Ribic; Albert J. Beck; Dale Higgins; Dan Eklund; Susan. Reinecke

    2015-01-01

    Woodland ponds are important landscape features that help sustain populations of amphibians that require this aquatic habitat for successful reproduction. Species abundance patterns often reflect site-specific differences in hydrology, physical characteristics, and surrounding vegetation. Large-scale processes such as changing land cover and environmental conditions...

  10. Drastic population size change in two populations of the Golden-striped salamander over a forty year period - are eucalypt plantations to blame?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arntzen, J.W.

    2015-01-01

    Over the last half century the Iberian peninsula has seen the large scale planting of exotic gum trees (Eucalyptus sp.) therewith reducing space for native wildlife. An additional effect of the gum tree plantations may be the lowering of the water table in adjacent streams, to which amphibian

  11. EXTINCTION RISK OR LACK OF SAMPLING IN A THREATENED SPECIES: GENETIC STRUCTURE AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUITABILITY OF THE NEOTROPICAL FROG PRISTIMANTIS PENELOPUS (ANURA: CRAUGASTORIDAE

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    ADRIANA RESTREPO

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT IUCN Red Lists have been a valuable tool to prioritize conservation plans in endemic neotropical frogs. However, many areas in this region are poorly known in terms of their diversity and endemism. Based on examined museum specimens of the threatened species Pristimantis penelopus we revised its geographic distribution and determined the habitat suitability using niche modeling techniques. Using a mitochondrial fragment of COI gene, we determine the phylogenetic position and the extent of the genetic variation across its distribution in Colombia. We present the first records of P. penelopus for the Cordillera Oriental, the western versant of Cordillera Occidental and the northern portion of the Cauca river basin. Based on the molecular phylogenetic analysis, Pristimantis penelopus belongs to the P. ridens series sensu (Padial et al., 2014. The mean of intraspecific genetic variation is 2.1% and the variation among population ranges between 2.3 and 3.5%. The genetic distance between the western populations and the Magdalena Valley populations suggests a potential phylogeographic break in northwestern Antioquia. We expand the realized distribution by 258 kilometers north, 200 km east and 223 km northwest. Based on our results and according to the IUCN criteria we propose a new category for the species and highlight the need to increase the surveys in poorly known regions to better understand the geographic distribution and conservation status of listed species.

  12. Non–invasive sampling of endangered neotropical river otters reveals high levels of dispersion in the Lacantun River System of Chiapas, Mexico

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    Ortega, J.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Patterns of genetic dispersion, levels of population genetic structure, and movement of the neotropical river otter (Lontra longicaudis were investigated by screening eight polymorphic microsatellites from DNA extracted from fecal samples, collected in a hydrologic system of the Lacandon rainforest in Chiapas, Mexico. A total of 34 unique genotypes were detected from our surveys along six different rivers, and the effect of landscape genetic structure was studied. We recovered 16 of the 34 individuals in multiple rivers at multiple times. We found high levels of dispersion and low levels of genetic differentiation among otters from the six surveyed rivers (P > 0.05, except for the pairwise comparison among the Lacantún and José rivers (P < 0.05. We recommend that conservation management plans for the species consider the entire Lacantún River System and its tributaries as a single management unit to ensure the maintenance of current levels of population genetic diversity, because the population analyzed seems to follow a source–sink dynamic mainly determined by the existence of the major river.

  13. Effects of Tail Clipping on Larval Performance and Tail Regeneration Rates in the Near Eastern Fire Salamander, Salamandra infraimmaculata.

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    Ori Segev

    Full Text Available Tail-tip clipping is a common technique for collecting tissue samples from amphibian larvae and adults. Surprisingly, studies of this invasive sampling procedure or of natural tail clipping--i.e., bites inflicted by predators including conspecifics--on the performance and fitness of aquatic larval stages of urodeles are scarce. We conducted two studies in which we assessed the effects of posterior tail clipping (~30 percent of tail on Near Eastern fire salamander (Salamandra infraimmaculata larvae. In a laboratory study, we checked regeneration rates of posterior tail-tip clipping at different ages. Regeneration rates were hump-shaped, peaking at the age of ~30 days and then decreasing. This variation in tail regeneration rates suggests tradeoffs in resource allocation between regeneration and somatic growth during early and advanced development. In an outdoor artificial pond experiment, under constant larval densities, we assessed how tail clipping of newborn larvae affects survival to, time to, and size at metamorphosis. Repeated measures ANOVA on mean larval survival per pond revealed no effect of tail clipping. Tail clipping had correspondingly no effect on larval growth and development expressed in size (mass and snout-vent length at, and time to, metamorphosis. We conclude that despite the given variation in tail regeneration rates throughout larval ontogeny, clipping of 30% percent of the posterior tail area seems to have no adverse effects on larval fitness and survival. We suggest that future use of this imperative tool for the study of amphibian should take into account larval developmental stage during the time of application and not just the relative size of the clipped tail sample.

  14. [Leaf micrografic anatomy of the Neotropical palm Bactris gasipaes (Arecaceae)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaimsohn, Francisco Paulo; Montiel, Mayra; Villalobos, Enrique; Mora Urpi, Jorge

    2008-06-01

    The economic importance of the palm Bactris gasipaes is growing in the Neotropoical region. We collected leaflets from plants under a chemical fertilization regime and a population of 5000 plants per hectare, in Costa Rica. The variety, Diamantes 10, has an ascendency fom the upper Amazon basin. We used Harries hematoxiline, eocine and standard light microscopy techniques. The presence of raphids and buliform cells was confirmed for the abaxial surface of the leaflets and for the hypodermic tissue on both sides. The absence of the Krantz anatomy was confirmed in consistence with former observations about the C3 photosynthesis in other species of Palmaceae. The average stomatal density on the abaxial surface was 96.87 +/- 16.31 stomata.mm(-2) and 14.20 +/- 4.05 in the adaxial surface.

  15. Araucnephia iberaensis n. sp., a Neotropical Black Fly with a Peculiar Distribution (Diptera-Simuliidae

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    S Coscarón

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Araucnephia Wygodzinsky & Coscarón is a Neotropical black fly genus in which only one species from Central Chile is known. Another species has now been found in Corrientes province on the eastern side of the Iberá tropical swamps of Argentina, on the western border of the mountainous region of southern Brazil. This new species, A. iberaensis, is herein described and illustrated and information on its bionomics is recorded. It is an interesting species because previous to its discovery no black fly genus or subgenus from Central Chile region has been found in tropical areas, because these two regions are separated by the Monte and Pampas realms. Similarly, no Brazilian genus or subgenus has crossed the Andes mountains to Chile. A comparison with other Neotropical, Nearctic, Ethiopian (Afrotropical and Australian Prosimuliini (sensu Crosskey & Howard showed Araucnephia to be a valid taxon most closely related to Araucnephioides (sympatric in Chile. Araucnephia also shows great affinities with Lutzsimulium from Southeast Brazil and Argentina and Paracnephia from South Africa.

  16. Bats (Chiroptera: Noctilionoidea) Challenge a Recent Origin of Extant Neotropical Diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas, Danny; Warsi, Omar M; Dávalos, Liliana M

    2016-05-01

    The mechanisms underlying the high extant biodiversity in the Neotropics have been controversial since the 19th century. Support for the influence of period-specific changes on diversification often rests on detecting more speciation events during a particular period. The timing of speciation events may reflect the influence of incomplete taxon sampling, protracted speciation, and null processes of lineage accumulation. Here we assess the influence of these factors on the timing of speciation with new multilocus data for New World noctilionoid bats (Chiroptera: Noctilionoidea). Biogeographic analyses revealed the importance of the Neotropics in noctilionoid diversification, and the critical role of dispersal. We detected no shift in speciation rate associated with the Quaternary or pre-Quaternary periods, and instead found an increase in speciation linked to the evolution of the subfamily Stenodermatinae (∼18 Ma). Simulations modeling constant speciation and extinction rates for the phylogeny systematically showed more speciation events in the Quaternary. Since recording more divergence events in the Quaternary can result from lineage accumulation, the age of extant sister species cannot be interpreted as supporting higher speciation rates during this period. Instead, analyzing the factors that influence speciation requires modeling lineage-specific traits and environmental, spatial, and ecological drivers of speciation. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Morphology and Efficiency of a Specialized Foraging Behavior, Sediment Sifting, in Neotropical Cichlid Fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, Stuart; Watkins, Crystal; Honeycutt, Rodney L.; Winemiller, Kirk O.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis on a set of ecomorphological traits from 27 species of Neotropical cichlids. For most sifting taxa, feeding behavior could be effectively predicted by a linear discriminant function of ecomorphology across multiple clades of sediment sifters, and this pattern could not be explained by shared evolutionary history alone. Additionally, we tested foraging efficiency in seven Neotropical cichlid species, five of which are specialized benthic feeders with differing head morphology. Efficiency was evaluated based on the degree to which invertebrate prey could be retrieved at different depths of sediment. Feeding performance was compared both with respect to feeding mode and species using a phylogenetic ANCOVA, with substrate depth as a covariate. Benthic foraging performance was constant across sediment depths in non-sifters but declined with depth in sifters. The non-sifting Hypsophrys used sweeping motions of the body and fins to excavate large pits to uncover prey; this tactic was more efficient for consuming deeply buried invertebrates than observed among sediment sifters. Findings indicate that similar feeding performance among sediment-sifting cichlids extracting invertebrate prey from shallow sediment layers reflects constraints associated with functional morphology and, to a lesser extent, phylogeny. PMID:24603485

  18. 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.

  19. Genetic and metabolic biodiversity of Trichoderma from Colombia and adjacent neotropic regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoyos-Carvajal, Lilliana; Orduz, Sergio; Bissett, John

    2009-09-01

    The genus Trichoderma has been studied for production of enzymes and other metabolites, as well as for exploitation as effective biological control agents. The biodiversity of Trichoderma has seen relatively limited study over much of the neotropical region. In the current study we assess the biodiversity of 183 isolates from Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil and Colombia, using morphological, metabolic and genetic approaches. A comparatively high diversity of species was found, comprising 29 taxa: Trichoderma asperellum (60 isolates), Trichoderma atroviride (3), Trichoderma brevicompactum (5), Trichoderma crassum (3), Trichoderma erinaceum (3), Trichoderma gamsii (2), Trichoderma hamatum (2), Trichoderma harzianum (49), Trichoderma koningiopsis (6), Trichoderma longibrachiatum (3), Trichoderma ovalisporum (1), Trichoderma pubescens (2), Trichoderma rossicum (4), Trichoderma spirale (1), Trichoderma tomentosum (3), Trichoderma virens (8), Trichoderma viridescens (7) and Hypocrea jecorina (3) (anamorph: Trichoderma reesei), along with 11 currently undescribed species. T. asperellum was the prevalent species and was represented by two distinct genotypes with different metabolic profiles and habitat preferences. The second predominant species, T. harzianum, was represented by three distinct genotypes. The addition of 11 currently undescribed species is evidence of the considerable unresolved biodiversity of Trichoderma in neotropical regions. Sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer regions (ITS) of the ribosomal repeat could not differentiate some species, and taken alone gave several misidentifications in part due to the presence of nonorthologous copies of the ITS in some isolates.

  20. Contrasting patterns of Andean diversification among three diverse clades of Neotropical clearwing butterflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chazot, Nicolas; De-Silva, Donna Lisa; Willmott, Keith R; Freitas, André V L; Lamas, Gerardo; Mallet, James; Giraldo, Carlos E; Uribe, Sandra; Elias, Marianne

    2018-04-01

    The Neotropical region is the most biodiverse on Earth, in a large part due to the highly diverse tropical Andean biota. The Andes are a potentially important driver of diversification within the mountains and for neighboring regions. We compared the role of the Andes in diversification among three subtribes of Ithomiini butterflies endemic to the Neotropics, Dircennina, Oleriina, and Godyridina. The diversification patterns of Godyridina have been studied previously. Here, we generate the first time-calibrated phylogeny for the largest ithomiine subtribe, Dircennina, and we reanalyze a published phylogeny of Oleriina to test different biogeographic scenarios involving the Andes within an identical framework. We found common diversification patterns across the three subtribes, as well as major differences. In Dircennina and Oleriina, our results reveal a congruent pattern of diversification related to the Andes with an Andean origin, which contrasts with the Amazonian origin and multiple Andean colonizations of Godyridina. In each of the three subtribes, a clade diversified in the Northern Andes at a faster rate. Diversification within Amazonia occurred in Oleriina and Godyridina, while virtually no speciation occurred in Dircennina in this region. Dircennina was therefore characterized by higher diversification rates within the Andes compared to non-Andean regions, while in Oleriina and Godyridina, we found no difference between these regions. Our results and discussion highlight the importance of comparative approaches in biogeographic studies.

  1. A new genus and species of Neotropical Nemobiinae (Insecta: Orthoptera: Grylloidea: Trigonidiidae: Nemobiinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jesus, Fabiene Maria DE; Pereira, Marcelo Ribeiro; Rodrigues, Geanne Carla Ripani; Sperber, Carlos Frankl

    2017-06-09

    A new genus and a new species of Neotropical cricket is described: Pepoapua cariacica n. gen., n. sp., occurring in four Atlantic Forest remnants in the states of Bahia and Espírito Santo, Brazil. This new genus is morphologically similar in external characteristics, both male and female genitalia, with two other Neotropical genera of Nemobiinae: Amanayara and Kevanemobius. The combination of the external morphological characteristics, along with male genitalia, characterize a new genus through combination of the following characters: (i) males and females with morphologically similar tegmina; (ii) tegmina reduced, not reaching half of the second abdominal segment; (iii) dorsal field of the tegmina with parallel veins, without stridulatory vein or any specialized area for sound production; (iv) tibia of the first pair of legs without tympanum; (v) tibia of the third pair of legs with seven dorsal spurs, four inner and three outer, the proximo-dorsal inner spur reduced in size and the disto-dorsal inner spur without glandular aspect; (vi) ovipositor with distal portion of the dorsal and ventral valves serrated; (vii) male genitalia without evident bristles or sensillas; (viii) pseudepiphallic median lobe presenting apical and ventral projections.

  2. Morphology and efficiency of a specialized foraging behavior, sediment sifting, in neotropical cichlid fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Fernández, Hernán; Arbour, Jessica; Willis, Stuart; Watkins, Crystal; Honeycutt, Rodney L; Winemiller, Kirk O

    2014-01-01

    Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis on a set of ecomorphological traits from 27 species of Neotropical cichlids. For most sifting taxa, feeding behavior could be effectively predicted by a linear discriminant function of ecomorphology across multiple clades of sediment sifters, and this pattern could not be explained by shared evolutionary history alone. Additionally, we tested foraging efficiency in seven Neotropical cichlid species, five of which are specialized benthic feeders with differing head morphology. Efficiency was evaluated based on the degree to which invertebrate prey could be retrieved at different depths of sediment. Feeding performance was compared both with respect to feeding mode and species using a phylogenetic ANCOVA, with substrate depth as a covariate. Benthic foraging performance was constant across sediment depths in non-sifters but declined with depth in sifters. The non-sifting Hypsophrys used sweeping motions of the body and fins to excavate large pits to uncover prey; this tactic was more efficient for consuming deeply buried invertebrates than observed among sediment sifters. Findings indicate that similar feeding performance among sediment-sifting cichlids extracting invertebrate prey from shallow sediment layers reflects constraints associated with functional morphology and, to a lesser extent, phylogeny.

  3. Edible species of the fungal genus hebeloma and two neotropical pines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hernandez, V.C.; Moreno, J.P.; Lizaola, R.Q.; Moreno, J.P.

    2015-01-01

    Mexico has one of the largest diversities of pines and ectomycorrhizal fungi known world-wide. Therefore, describingnative ectomycorrizal species from the country associated with pines is important because of their biotechnological potential in the forestry and food sectors. Worldwide, Hebeloma has generally been considered a genus of poisonous ectomycorrhizal fungi. However, interestingly, in central Mexico there is a complex of under-studied Hebeloma species which are used as food in large quantities and have a great economic and social importance. Three edible species of Hebeloma widely marketed in the country were identified: Hebeloma alpinum, H. mesophaeum and H. leucosarx with scanning electron microscopy on the basis of different ornamentation patterns in the spores of these species. Synthesis was carried out by inoculating two Neotropical pines with sporomes of the three described Hebeloma species. To achieve this, inoculated pines were kept in greenhouse conditions during one year. A characteristic morphotype for each fungal species was observed and it is described here. The first known description of the morphotype of Hebeloma alpinum with pines is presented. This seminal work gives a tool to identify the morphotypes produced by the main edible ectomycorrhizal species of Hebeloma marketed in Mexico, with biotechnological potential to inoculate pines used in reforestation programmes in Neotropical areas. (author)

  4. A key and checklist to the Neotropical forensically important "Little House Flies" (Diptera: Fanniidae

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    Diana Grisales

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Fanniidae (Insecta: Diptera is a relatively small family (ca. 350 spp. with five genera, of which Fannia Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830 and Euryomma Stein, 1899 have Neotropical distributions. Some of these species are almost always found in forensic studies. Forensically relevant species have been neglected, despite recent forensic studies that suggest their importance for estimating post-mortem interval (PMI. Thus, current and updated keys to identify adults or larvae on carcasses are unavailable for the most important species. While immature stages are important in estimating PMI, evidence suggests that adults (Fanniidae as well as other families may also be useful for this purpose. Here we provide a key to males of the species of Fanniidae (found on corpses and other decomposing organic matter with a checklist of species that have been used in forensics in the Neotropical region. The key comprises all 38 species of Fannia and Euryomma that have already been successfully used in forensics, and species that are potentially useful for estimating PMI. These records were found after reviews of the literature and data from entomological collections. Photographs and illustrations of the main characters in the key are provided.

  5. DNA barcoding of freshwater ichthyoplankton in the Neotropics as a tool for ecological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frantine-Silva, W; Sofia, S H; Orsi, M L; Almeida, F S

    2015-09-01

    Quantifying and classifying ichthyoplankton is one of the most effective ways of monitoring the recruitment process in fishes. However, correctly identifying the fish based on morphological characters is extremely difficult, especially in the early stages of development. We examined ichthyoplankton from tributaries and reservoirs along the middle stretch of the Paranapanema River, one of the areas most impacted by hydroelectric projects in the Neotropics. Matching DNA sequences of the COI gene (628-648 bp) allowed us to identify 99.25% of 536 samples of eggs (293) and larvae (243) subjected to BOLD-IDS similarity analysis with a species-level threshold of 1.3%. The results revealed 37 species in 27 genera, 15 families and four orders, some 23.8% of documented fish species in the Paranapanema River. Molecular identification meant that we could include data from egg samples that accounted for about 30% of the species richness observed. The results in this study confirm the efficacy of DNA barcoding in identifying Neotropical ichthyoplankton and show how the data produced provide valuable information for preparing plans for conserving and managing inland waters. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Integrative taxonomy detects cryptic and overlooked fish species in a neotropical river basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomes, Laís Carvalho; Pessali, Tiago Casarim; Sales, Naiara Guimarães; Pompeu, Paulo Santos; Carvalho, Daniel Cardoso

    2015-10-01

    The great freshwater fish diversity found in the neotropical region makes management and conservation actions challenging. Due to shortage of taxonomists and insufficient infrastructure to deal with such great biodiversity (i.e. taxonomic impediment), proposed remedies to accelerate species identification and descriptions include techniques that combine DNA-based identification and concise morphological description. The building of a DNA barcode reference database correlating meristic and genetic data was developed for 75 % of the Mucuri River basin's freshwater fish. We obtained a total of 141 DNA barcode sequences from 37 species belonging to 30 genera, 19 families, and 5 orders. Genetic distances within species, genera, and families were 0.74, 9.5, and 18.86 %, respectively. All species could be clearly identified by the DNA barcodes. Divergences between meristic morphological characteristics and DNA barcodes revealed two cryptic species among the Cyphocharax gilbert and Astyanax gr. bimaculatus specimens, and helped to identify two overlooked species within the Gymnotus and Astyanax taxa. Therefore, using a simplified model of neotropical biodiversity, we tested the efficiency of an integrative taxonomy approach for species discovery, identification of cryptic diversity, and accelerating biodiversity descriptions.

  7. Diversification of the Genus Anopheles and a Neotropical Clade from the Late Cretaceous.

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    Lucas A Freitas

    Full Text Available The Anopheles genus is a member of the Culicidae family and consists of approximately 460 recognized species. The genus is composed of 7 subgenera with diverse geographical distributions. Despite its huge medical importance, a consensus has not been reached on the phylogenetic relationships among Anopheles subgenera. We assembled a comprehensive dataset comprising the COI, COII and 5.8S rRNA genes and used maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference to estimate the phylogeny and divergence times of six out of the seven Anopheles subgenera. Our analysis reveals a monophyletic group composed of the three exclusively Neotropical subgenera, Stethomyia, Kerteszia and Nyssorhynchus, which began to diversify in the Late Cretaceous, at approximately 90 Ma. The inferred age of the last common ancestor of the Anopheles genus was ca. 110 Ma. The monophyly of all Anopheles subgenera was supported, although we failed to recover a significant level of statistical support for the monophyly of the Anopheles genus. The ages of the last common ancestors of the Neotropical clade and the Anopheles and Cellia subgenera were inferred to be at the Late Cretaceous (ca. 90 Ma. Our analysis failed to statistically support the monophyly of the Anopheles genus because of an unresolved polytomy between Bironella and A. squamifemur.

  8. Diversification of the silverspot butterflies (Nymphalidae) in the Neotropics inferred from multi-locus DNA sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massardo, Darli; Fornel, Rodrigo; Kronforst, Marcus; Gonçalves, Gislene Lopes; Moreira, Gilson Rudinei Pires

    2015-01-01

    The tribe Heliconiini (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) is a diverse group of butterflies distributed throughout the Neotropics, which has been studied extensively, in particular the genus Heliconius. However, most of the other lineages, such as Dione, which are less diverse and considered basal within the group, have received little attention. Basic information, such as species limits and geographical distributions remain uncertain for this genus. Here we used multilocus DNA sequence data and the geographical distribution analysis across the entire range of Dione in the Neotropical region in order to make inferences on the evolutionary history of this poorly explored lineage. Bayesian time-tree reconstruction allows inferring two major diversification events in this tribe around 25mya. Lineages thought to be ancient, such as Dione and Agraulis, are as recent as Heliconius. Dione formed a monophyletic clade, sister to the genus Agraulis. Dione juno, D. glycera and D. moneta were reciprocally monophyletic and formed genetic clusters, with the first two more close related than each other in relation to the third. Divergence time estimates support the hypothesis that speciation in Dione coincided with both the rise of Passifloraceae (the host plants) and the uplift of the Andes. Since the sister species D. glycera and D. moneta are specialized feeders on passion-vine lineages that are endemic to areas located either within or adjacent to the Andes, we inferred that they co-speciated with their host plants during this vicariant event. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Molecular phylogeny of Neotropical bioluminescent beetles (Coleoptera: Elateroidea) in southern and central Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaral, D T; Arnoldi, F G C; Rosa, S P; Viviani, V R

    2014-08-01

    Bioluminescence in beetles is found mainly in the Elateroidea superfamily (Elateridae, Lampyridae and Phengodidae). The Neotropical region accounts for the richest diversity of bioluminescent species in the world with about 500 described species, most occurring in the Amazon, Atlantic rainforest and Cerrado (savanna) ecosystems in Brazil. The origin and evolution of bioluminescence, as well as the taxonomic status of several Neotropical taxa in these families remains unclear. In order to contribute to a better understanding of the phylogeny and evolution of bioluminescent Elateroidea we sequenced and analyzed sequences of mitochondrial NADH2 and the nuclear 28S genes and of the cloned luciferase sequences of Brazilian species belonging to the following genera: (Lampyridae) Macrolampis, Photuris, Amydetes, Bicellonycha, Aspisoma, Lucidota, Cratomorphus; (Elateridae) Conoderus, Pyrophorus, Hapsodrilus, Pyrearinus, Fulgeochlizus; and (Phengodidae) Pseudophengodes, Phrixothrix, Euryopa and Brasilocerus. Our study supports a closer phylogenetic relationship between Elateridae and Phengodidae as other molecular studies, in contrast with previous morphologic and molecular studies that clustered Lampyridae/Phengodidae. Molecular data also supported division of the Phengodinae subfamily into the tribes Phengodini and Mastinocerini. The position of the genus Amydetes supports the status of the Amydetinae as a subfamily. The genus Euryopa is included in the Mastinocerini tribe within the Phengodinae/Phengodidae. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Molecular detection of viral agents in free-ranging and captive neotropical felids in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furtado, Mariana M; Taniwaki, Sueli A; de Barros, Iracema N; Brandão, Paulo E; Catão-Dias, José L; Cavalcanti, Sandra; Cullen, Laury; Filoni, Claudia; Jácomo, Anah T de Almeida; Jorge, Rodrigo S P; Silva, Nairléia Dos Santos; Silveira, Leandro; Ferreira Neto, José S

    2017-09-01

    We describe molecular testing for felid alphaherpesvirus 1 (FHV-1), carnivore protoparvovirus 1 (CPPV-1), feline calicivirus (FCV), alphacoronavirus 1 (feline coronavirus [FCoV]), feline leukemia virus (FeLV), feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), and canine distemper virus (CDV) in whole blood samples of 109 free-ranging and 68 captive neotropical felids from Brazil. Samples from 2 jaguars ( Panthera onca) and 1 oncilla ( Leopardus tigrinus) were positive for FHV-1; 2 jaguars, 1 puma ( Puma concolor), and 1 jaguarundi ( Herpairulus yagouaroundi) tested positive for CPPV-1; and 1 puma was positive for FIV. Based on comparison of 103 nucleotides of the UL24-UL25 gene, the FHV-1 sequences were 99-100% similar to the FHV-1 strain of domestic cats. Nucleotide sequences of CPPV-1 were closely related to sequences detected in other wild carnivores, comparing 294 nucleotides of the VP1 gene. The FIV nucleotide sequence detected in the free-ranging puma, based on comparison of 444 nucleotides of the pol gene, grouped with other lentiviruses described in pumas, and had 82.4% identity with a free-ranging puma from Yellowstone Park and 79.5% with a captive puma from Brazil. Our data document the circulation of FHV-1, CPPV-1, and FIV in neotropical felids in Brazil.

  11. 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.

  12. Immune-related effects from predation risk in Neotropical blue-black grassquits (Volatinia jacarina).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caetano, João V O; Maia, Maya R; Manica, Lilian T; Macedo, Regina H

    2014-11-01

    Predation is a major force shaping natural history traits of birds because of their vulnerability during nesting and higher visibility during diurnal activities. For most birds in the Neotropics, predation is the major cause of nest failure due to the region's high diversity and abundance of predators. The blue-black grassquit (Volatinia jacarina), similarly to other small passerines in the savanna region of central Brazil, suffers extremely high rates of nest predation. Additionally, males may be particularly vulnerable to predators since they are very conspicuous when executing courtship displays. We assessed some of the non-lethal costs of predation risk on this species by comparing physiological and morphological parameters of birds exposed to predator vocalizations with that of control subjects exposed to non-predator vocalizations. Birds exposed to the predator vocalizations exhibited an immune-related reaction (changes in their H/L ratio), but no changes were observed in other biological parameters measured. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Neotropical Behaviour. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Delimitation of some neotropical laccate Ganoderma (Ganodermataceae): molecular phylogeny and morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Lima Júnior, Nelson Correia; Baptista Gibertone, Tatiana; Malosso, Elaine

    2014-09-01

    Ganoderma includes species of great economic and ecological importance, but taxonomists judge the current nomenclatural situation as chaotic and poorly studied in the neotropics. From this perspective, phylogenetic analyses inferred from ribosomal DNA sequences have aided the clarification of the genus status. In this study, 14 specimens of Ganoderma and two of Tomophagus collected in Brazil were used for DNA extraction, amplification and sequencing of the ITS and LSU regions (rDNA). The phylogenetic delimitation of six neotropical taxa (G. chalceum, G. multiplicatum, G. orbiforme, G. parvulum, G. aff. oerstedtii and Tomophagus colossus) was determined based on these Brazilian specimens and found to be distinct from the laccate Ganoderma from Asia, Europe, North America and from some specimens from Argentina. Phylogenetic reconstructions confirmed that the laccate Ganoderna is distinct from Tomophagus, although they belong to the same group. The use of taxonomic synonyms Ganoderma subamboinense for G. multiplicatumnz, G. boninense for G. orbiforme and G. chalceum for G. cupreum was not confirmed. However, Ganoderma parvulum was confirmed as the correct name for specimens called G. stipitatu. Furthermore, the name G. hucidumn should be used only for European species. The use of valid published names is proposed according to the specimen geographical distribution, their morphological characteristics and rDNA analysis. 1208. Epub 2014 September 01.

  14. Revisiting adaptations of neotropical katydids (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae) to gleaning bat predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ter Hofstede, Hannah; Voigt-Heucke, Silke; Lang, Alexander; Römer, Heinrich; Page, Rachel; Faure, Paul; Dechmann, Dina

    2017-01-01

    All animals have defenses against predators, but assessing the effectiveness of such traits is challenging. Neotropical katydids (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae) are an abundant, ubiquitous, and diverse group of large insects eaten by a variety of predators, including substrate-gleaning bats. Gleaning bats capture food from surfaces and usually use prey-generated sounds to detect and locate prey. A number of Neotropical katydid signaling traits, such as the emission of ultrasonic frequencies, substrate vibration communication, infrequent calling, and ultrasound-evoked song cessation are thought to have evolved as defenses against substrate-gleaning bats. We collected insect remains from hairy big-eared bat ( Micronycteris hirsuta ) roosts in Panama. We identified insect remains to order, species, or genus and quantified the proportion of prey with defenses against predatory bats based on defenses described in the literature. Most remains were from katydids and half of those were from species with documented defenses against substrate-gleaning bats. Many culled remains were from insects that do not emit mate-calling songs (e.g. beetles, dragonflies, cockroaches, and female katydids), indicating that eavesdropping on prey signals is not the only prey-finding strategy used by this bat. Our results show that substrate-gleaning bats can occasionally overcome katydid defenses.

  15. Predominance of self-compatibility in hummingbird-pollinated plants in the Neotropics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolowski, Marina; Saad, Carolina Farias; Ashman, Tia-Lynn; Freitas, Leandro

    2013-01-01

    Both plant traits and plant-pollinator interactions are thought to influence plant mating systems. For hummingbird-pollinated plants, foraging strategy (territorial or traplining) is also expected to influence plant mating. We hypothesize that the traplining behavior of hermits promotes outcrossing, whereas the behavior of non-hermits favours self-incompatibility. Thus, selection is expected to maintain self-incompatibility in plants pollinated by non-hermits. We explore the incidence of self-incompatibility in Neotropical hummingbird-pollinated plants and its association with hummingbird behavior and plant traits. We conducted a literature review (56 species) and performed hand-pollination experiments in 27 hummingbird-pollinated plants in an Atlantic rainforest. We found that self-incompatibility (measured as hummingbird-pollinated plants. The interaction of hummingbird and habit type affected ISI, as did phylogenetic relationships. Specifically, herbs pollinated by non-hermits had higher ISI than woody plants pollinated by non-hermits, and herbs pollinated by both hermits and non-hermits. For the Atlantic rainforest plant guild, 30 % of the species were self-incompatible. ISI was higher in herbs than in woody species and increased with plant aggregation but was not dependent on foraging behavior, plant density, or floral display. Although hummingbirds differ in their foraging strategies, these behavioral differences seem to have only a minor influence on the incidence of self-incompatibility. Phylogenetic relatedness seems to be the strongest determinant of mating system in Neotropical hummingbird-pollinated plants.

  16. Leucophora Satellite Flies (Diptera: Anthomyiidae) as Nest Parasites of Sweat Bees (Hymenoptera: Halictidae) in the Neotropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polidori, C; Michelsen, V; Nieves-Aldrey, J L

    2015-08-01

    The biology of the 10 species of Leucophora (Diptera: Anthomyiidae) recorded in the Neotropics remains unknown. The large majority of the studied species so far are kleptoparasites of bees and wasps. Here, we report the first observations of Leucophora andicola (Bigot) and Leucophora peullae (Malloch) visiting the nests of ground-nesting sweat bees Corynura (Hymenoptera: Halictidae) in Chilean Patagonia. Females of both species perch on small stones or sticks within a dense nest aggregation of the bees and then track pollen-loaded bees in flight with great precision, eventually following them into their nests. The overall behavior closely resembles that observed for many other species of the genus. Excavations of some bee nests returned only two dipteran puparia, possibly of Leucophora, suggesting a low parasitism rate. One male of L. peullae was also collected at the bee aggregation. This is the first report of host association for any Leucophora from the Neotropics and the first report of any anthomyiid fly associated with augochlorine bees.

  17. Continental cichlid radiations: functional diversity reveals the role of changing ecological opportunity in the Neotropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arbour, Jessica Hilary; López-Fernández, Hernán

    2016-08-17

    Adaptive radiations have been hypothesized to contribute broadly to the diversity of organisms. Models of adaptive radiation predict that ecological opportunity and ecological release, the availability of empty ecological niches and the response by adapting lineages to occupy them, respectively, drive patterns of phenotypic and lineage diversification. Adaptive radiations driven by 'ecological opportunity' are well established in island systems; it is less clear if ecological opportunity influences continent-wide diversification. We use Neotropical cichlid fishes to test if variation in rates of functional evolution is consistent with changing ecological opportunity. Across a functional morphological axis associated with ram-suction feeding traits, evolutionary rates declined through time as lineages diversified in South America. Evolutionary rates of ram-suction functional morphology also appear to have accelerated as cichlids colonized Central America and encountered renewed opportunity. Our results suggest that ecological opportunity may play an important role in shaping patterns of morphological diversity of even broadly distributed lineages like Neotropical cichlids. © 2016 The Author(s).

  18. Interoceanic occurrence of species of Aristocleidus Mueller, 1936 (Monogenoidea: Dactylogyridae) parasitizing the gills of gerreid fishes in the Neotropics

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mendoza-Franco, Edgar F.; Violante-González, J.; Roche, D. G.

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 105, č. 3 (2009), s. 703-708 ISSN 0932-0113 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : Neotropics * Gerreidae * Aristocleidus * Diapterus * Gerres * host specificity * Isthmus of Panama Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine Impact factor: 1.721, year: 2009

  19. Phylogenetic analysis of Attalea (Arecaceae): insights on the historical biogeography of a recently diversified Neotropical plant group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Technical Abstract Here we present a dated phylogenetic tree of the neotropical palm genus Attalea (Arecaceae). We used six orthologs from the nuclear WRKY gene family across 98 accessions to address relationships among species and biogeographic hypotheses. Here we found that the formerly recognized...

  20. Antioxidant and metabolite profiling of North American and neotropical blueberries using LC-TOF-MS and multivariate analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Chunhui; Dastmalchi, Keyvan; Flores, Gema; Wu, Shi-Biao; Pedraza-Peñalosa, Paola; Long, Chunlin; Kennelly, Edward J

    2013-04-10

    There are many neotropical blueberries, and recent studies have shown that some have even stronger antioxidant activity than the well-known edible North American blueberries. Antioxidant marker compounds were predicted by applying multivariate statistics to data from LC-TOF-MS analysis and antioxidant assays of 3 North American blueberry species (Vaccinium corymbosum, Vaccinium angustifolium, and a defined mixture of Vaccinium virgatum with V. corymbosum) and 12 neotropical blueberry species (Anthopterus wardii, Cavendishia grandifolia, Cavendishia isernii, Ceratostema silvicola, Disterigma rimbachii, Macleania coccoloboides, Macleania cordifolia, Macleania rupestris, Satyria boliviana, Sphyrospermum buxifolium, Sphyrospermum cordifolium, and Sphyrospermum ellipticum). Fourteen antioxidant markers were detected, and 12 of these, including 7 anthocyanins, 3 flavonols, 1 hydroxycinnamic acid, and 1 iridoid glycoside, were identified. This application of multivariate analysis to bioactivity and mass data can be used for identification of pharmacologically active natural products and may help to determine which neotropical blueberry species will be prioritized for agricultural development. Also, the compositional differences between North American and neotropical blueberries were determined by chemometric analysis, and 44 marker compounds including 16 anthocyanins, 15 flavonoids, 7 hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives, 5 triterpene glycosides, and 1 iridoid glycoside were identified.

  1. A revision of the Neotropical genus Paraberismyia Woodley (Diptera, Stratiomyidae, Beridinae with three new species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norman Woodley

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The Neotropical genus Paraberismyia Woodley, 1995, is revised. Three new species, P. chiapas sp. n., P.mathisi sp. n., and P. triunfo sp. n. are described, alltype localities in Chiapas, Mexico. A key to the four known species is provided.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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

  3. A metagenomics-based approach to the top-down effect on the detritivore food web: a salamanders influence on fungal communities within a deciduous forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Donald M; Lawrence, Brandy R; Esterline, Dakota; Graham, Sean P; Edelbrock, Michael A; Wooten, Jessica A

    2014-11-01

    The flow of energy within an ecosystem can be considered either top-down, where predators influence consumers, or bottom-up, where producers influence consumers. Plethodon cinereus (Red-backed Salamander) is a terrestrial keystone predator who feeds on invertebrates within the ecosystem. We investigated the impact of the removal of P. cinereus on the detritivore food web in an upland deciduous forest in northwest Ohio, U.S.A. A total of eight aluminum enclosures, each containing a single P. cinereus under a small log, were constructed in the deciduous forest. On Day 1 of the experiment, four salamanders were evicted from four of the eight enclosures. Organic matter and soil were collected from the center of each enclosure at Day 1 and Day 21. From each sample, DNA was extracted, fungal-specific amplification performed, and 454 pyrosequencing was used to sequence the nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS2) region and partial ribosomal large subunit (LSU). Changes in overall fungal community composition or species diversity were not statistically significant between treatments. Statistically significant shifts in the most abundant taxonomic groups of fungi were documented in presence but not absence enclosures. We concluded that P. cinereus does not affect the overall composition or diversity of fungal communities, but does have an impact on specific groups of fungi. This study used a metagenomics-based approach to investigate a missing link among a keystone predator, P. cinereus, invertebrates, and fungal communities, all of which are critical in the detritivore food web.

  4. Response of Red-Backed Salamanders (Plethodon Cinereus to Changes in Hemlock Forest Soil Driven by Invasive Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (Adelges Tsugae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison Ochs

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Hemlock forests of the northeastern United States are declining due to the invasive hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA (Adelges tsugae. Hardwood species replace these forests, which affects soil properties that may influence other communities, such as red-backed salamanders (red-backs (Plethodon cinereus. This study examined the effects of HWA invasion on soil properties and how this affects red-backs at the Hemlock Removal Experiment at Harvard Forest, which consists of eight 0.8 ha plots treated with girdling to simulate HWA invasion, logging to simulate common management practices, or hemlock- or hardwood-dominated controls. Coverboard surveys were used to determine the relative abundance of red-backs between plots during June and July 2014 and soil cores were collected from which the bulk density, moisture, pH, temperature, leaf litter, and carbon-nitrogen ratio were measured. Ordination provided a soil quality index based on temperature, pH, and carbon-to-nitrogen ratio, which was significantly different between plot treatments (p < 0.05 and showed a significant negative correlation with the red-back relative abundance (p < 0.05. The findings support the hypothesis that red-backs are affected by soil quality, which is affected by plot treatment and thus HWA invasion. Further studies should explore how salamanders react in the long term towards changing environments and consider the use of red-backs as indicator species.

  5. Ecological release in lizard assemblages of neotropical savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesquita, Daniel Oliveira; Colli, Guarino Rinaldi; Vitt, Laurie J

    2007-08-01

    We compare lizard assemblages of Cerrado and Amazonian savannas to test the ecological release hypothesis, which predicts that niche dimensions and abundance should be greater in species inhabiting isolated habitat patches with low species richness (Amazonian savannas and isolated Cerrado patches) when compared with nonisolated areas in central Cerrado with greater species richness. We calculated microhabitat and diet niche breadths with data from 14 isolated Cerrado patches and Amazon savanna areas and six central Cerrado populations. Morphological data were compared using average Euclidean distances, and lizard abundance was estimated using the number of lizards captured in pitfall traps over an extended time period. We found no evidence of ecological release with respect to microhabitat use, suggesting that historical factors are better microhabitat predictors than ecological factors. However, data from individual stomachs indicate that ecological release occurs in these areas for one species (Tropidurus) but not others (Ameiva ameiva, Anolis, Cnemidophorus, and Micrablepharus), suggesting that evolutionary lineages respond differently to environmental pressures, with tropidurids being more affected by ecological factors than polychrotids, teiids, and gymnophthalmids. We found no evidence that ecological release occurs in these areas using morphological data. Based on abundance data, our results indicate that the ecological release (density compensation) hypothesis is not supported: lizard species are not more abundant in isolated areas than in nonisolated areas. The ecology of species is highly conservative, varying little from assemblage to assemblage. Nevertheless, increases in niche breadth for some species indicate that ecological release occurs as well.

  6. Management in a neotropical show cave: planning for invertebrates conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thais Giovannini Pellegrini

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Lapa Nova is a dolomitic cave about 4.5 km long located in northwestern Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The cave experiences intense tourism, concentrated over a single period of the year, during the Feast of Our Lady of Lapa. In order to evaluate the impacts felt by the invertebrate community from this tourism, a new methodology was proposed. Four types of areas (intense visitation area, outlying visitation areas, moderate visitation areas and no-visitation areas were sampled for invertebrates. There was one sampling prior and another on the last day of the 128th feast, to evaluate the effects of visitation on cave-dwelling invertebrates. Results show that invertebrate populations residing in more intensely visited areas of the cave undergo changes in distribution following the event. As a consequence of tourism, invertebrates shift to outlying locations from the visited area, which serve as refuges to the communities. Apparently, the fact that there are places inside Lapa Nova inaccessible to tourists reduces the impact suffered by the invertebrate community, as those sites serve as refuges for cave-dwelling organisms during the pilgrimage. A proper management plan was devised for the tourism/religious use of the cave. It consists basically of delimiting marked pathways for tourists, allowing invertebrates to seek shelter at locations outside visited areas and keeping no-visitation areas off-limits to tourism based on the results of the visitation effects on cave-dwelling invertebrates.

  7. Mineral Licks Attract Neotropical Seed-Dispersing Bats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Voigt, Ch.C.; Dechmann, D.K.N.; Dechmann, D.K.N.; Kunz, Th.H.; Bender, J.; Rinehart, B.J.; Michener, R.H.

    2007-01-01

    Unlike most terrestrial mammals, female bats must supply their offspring with all required nutrients until pups achieve virtually adult size, at which time they are able to fly and become independent. Access to nutrients may be especially challenging for reproductively active females in mineral-poor landscapes such as tropical rain forests. We hypothesized that pregnant and lactating females from tropical landscapes acquire essential nutrients from locally-available mineral licks. We captured ten times as many bats at mineral licks than at control sites in a lowland rain forest in eastern Ecuador. Among bats captured at mineral licks, the sex ratio was heavily biased toward females, and a significantly higher portion of females captured at these sites, compared to control sites, were reproductively active (pregnant and lactating). Enrichment of N 15 in relation to N 14 in wing tissue indicated that bats captured at mineral licks were mostly fruit-eating species. Given the high visitation rates of reproductive active females at mineral licks, it is likely that mineral licks are important for fruit-eating female bats as a mineral source during late pregnancy and lactation. By sustaining high population densities of fruit-eating bats that disperse seeds, mineral licks may have an indirect influence on local plant species richness.

  8. Evidence for the exchange of blood parasites between North America and the Neotropics in blue-winged teal (Anas discors)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramey, Andy M.; Reed, John; Walther, Patrick; Link, Paul; Schmutz, Joel A.; Douglas, David C.; Stallknecht, David E.; Soos, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Blue-winged teal (Anas discors) are abundant, small-bodied dabbling ducks that breed throughout the prairies of the northcentral USA and central Canada and that winter in the southern USA and northern Neotropics. Given the migratory tendencies of this species, it is plausible that blue-winged teal may disperse avian pathogens, such as parasites causing avian malaria, between spatially distant areas. To test the hypothesis that blue-winged teal play a role in the exchange of blood parasites between North America and areas further south, we collected information on migratory tendencies of this species and sampled birds at spatially distant areas during breeding and non-breeding periods to diagnose and genetically characterize parasitic infections. Using a combination of band recovery data, satellite telemetry, molecular diagnostics, and genetic analyses, we found evidence for (1) migratory connectivity of blue-winged teal between our sampling locations in the Canadian prairies and along the US Gulf Coast with areas throughout the northern Neotropics, (2) parasite acquisition at both breeding and non-breeding areas, (3) infection of blue-winged teal sampled in Canada and the USA withPlasmodium parasite lineages associated with the Neotropics, and (4) infection of blue-winged teal with parasites that were genetically related to those previously reported in waterfowl in both North America and South America. Collectively, our results suggest that blue-winged teal likely play a role in the dispersal of blood parasites between the Neotropics and North America, and therefore, the targeting of this species in surveillance programs for the early detection of Neotropical-origin avian pathogens in the USA may be informative.

  9. Season-modulated responses of Neotropical bats to forest fragmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Diogo F; Rocha, Ricardo; López-Baucells, Adrià; Farneda, Fábio Z; Carreiras, João M B; Palmeirim, Jorge M; Meyer, Christoph F J

    2017-06-01

    Seasonality causes fluctuations in resource availability, affecting the presence and abundance of animal species. The impacts of these oscillations on wildlife populations can be exacerbated by habitat fragmentation. We assessed differences in bat species abundance between the wet and dry season in a fragmented landscape in the Central Amazon characterized by primary forest fragments embedded in a secondary forest matrix. We also evaluated whether the relative importance of local vegetation structure versus landscape characteristics (composition and configuration) in shaping bat abundance patterns varied between seasons. Our working hypotheses were that abundance responses are species as well as season specific, and that in the wet season, local vegetation structure is a stronger determinant of bat abundance than landscape-scale attributes. Generalized linear mixed-effects models in combination with hierarchical partitioning revealed that relationships between species abundances and local vegetation structure and landscape characteristics were both season specific and scale dependent. Overall, landscape characteristics were more important than local vegetation characteristics, suggesting that landscape structure is likely to play an even more important role in landscapes with higher fragment-matrix contrast. Responses varied between frugivores and animalivores. In the dry season, frugivores responded more to compositional metrics, whereas during the wet season, local and configurational metrics were more important. Animalivores showed similar patterns in both seasons, responding to the same group of metrics in both seasons. Differences in responses likely reflect seasonal differences in the phenology of flowering and fruiting between primary and secondary forests, which affected the foraging behavior and habitat use of bats. Management actions should encompass multiscale approaches to account for the idiosyncratic responses of species to seasonal variation in

  10. First record of the neotropical otter Lontra longicaudis annectens (Carnivora, Mustelidae in the estuary Boca Negra, Jalisco, Mexico: an approach to understanding its diet.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodríguez-Uribe, M.C.

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The first record of the neotropical otter Lontra longicaudis annectens in the estuary Boca Negra, Jalisco, Mexico is presented. It includes relevant information about its diet and a photograph in its natural habitat is showed.

  11. A refined ecological risk assessment for California red-legged frog, Delta smelt, and California tiger salamander exposed to malathion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clemow, Yvonne H; Manning, Gillian E; Breton, Roger L; Winchell, Michael F; Padilla, Lauren; Rodney, Sara I; Hanzas, John P; Estes, Tammara L; Budreski, Katherine; Toth, Brent N; Hill, Katie L; Priest, Colleen D; Teed, R Scott; Knopper, Loren D; Moore, Dwayne Rj; Stone, Christopher T; Whatling, Paul

    2018-03-01

    The California red-legged frog (CRLF), Delta smelt (DS), and California tiger salamander (CTS) are 3 species listed under the United States Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA), all of which inhabit aquatic ecosystems in California. The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has conducted deterministic screening-level risk assessments for these species potentially exposed to malathion, an organophosphorus insecticide and acaricide. Results from our screening-level analyses identified potential risk of direct effects to DS as well as indirect effects to all 3 species via reduction in prey. Accordingly, for those species and scenarios in which risk was identified at the screening level, we conducted a refined probabilistic risk assessment for CRLF, DS, and CTS. The refined ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted using best available data and approaches, as recommended by the 2013 National Research Council (NRC) report "Assessing Risks to Endangered and Threatened Species from Pesticides." Refined aquatic exposure models including the Pesticide Root Zone Model (PRZM), the Vegetative Filter Strip Modeling System (VFSMOD), the Variable Volume Water Model (VVWM), the Exposure Analysis Modeling System (EXAMS), and the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) were used to generate estimated exposure concentrations (EECs) for malathion based on worst-case scenarios in California. Refined effects analyses involved developing concentration-response curves for fish and species sensitivity distributions (SSDs) for fish and aquatic invertebrates. Quantitative risk curves, field and mesocosm studies, surface-water monitoring data, and incident reports were considered in a weight-of-evidence approach. Currently, labeled uses of malathion are not expected to result in direct effects to CRLF, DS or CTS, or indirect effects due to effects on fish and invertebrate prey. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2018;14:224-239. © 2017 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and

  12. Time--temperature relation of embryonic development in the northwestern salamander, Ambystoma gracile

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, H A

    1976-04-01

    A field and laboratory study on temperature-related embryonic development of Ambystoma gracile was made on a population from northwestern Washington. Natural spawning began in the beaver pond during early March, and the duration of embryonic development (stages 1 to 46) was about 62 days. Average water temperature in the pond during embryonic development was 8.5/sup 0/C (range, 4.4 to 14.3/sup 0/C). The laboratory data of embryonic development at constant temperatures show that the limits of temperature tolerance are about 5 to 22.5/sup 0/C. Rate of development was measured by determining time required to develop from first cleavage (stage 2) to gill circulation (stage 37); representative rates are 12.7 days at 20/sup 0/C, 27 days at 12/sup 0/C, and 89 days at 7/sup 0/C. Embryos of A. gracile have the slowest rate of development when compared with embryos of four other species of Ambystoma (maculatum, mexicanum, tigrinum, and jeffersonianum) and with embryos of three Pacific Northwest frogs (Ascaphus truei, Rana aurora, and Hyla regilla).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margolis, Ellis; Malevich, Steven B.

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Ulcerative and granulomatous enteritis associated with Molineus torulosus parasitism in neotropical primates

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    Max Bruno Magno Bacalhao

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT: This paper reports eleven cases of ulcerative and granulomatous enteritis associated with Molineus torulosus parasitism in different species of neotropical primates of the Sapajus genus. All of the affected monkeys had been apprehended by the environmental police and were being treated in a rehabilitation center for wild animals. The clinical history was weight loss and debility. During the necropsy, several nodules were found on the duodenum and proximal jejunum wall, with ulcers on the adjacent intestinal mucosa, including the nodules in the pancreas of four monkeys. Histologically, eosinophilic granulomas were observed in the small intestine, associated with fibrosis, eggs and adult models of Trichostrongylidae, etiology consistent with Molineus torulosus. This study describes the first cases of parasitism in Sapajus flavius, a species previously considered extinct, but recently rediscovered, and presents the occurrence of M. torulosus in two other species, Sapajus libidinosus and Sapajus apella.

  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. 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.

  17. Paternal Effort in Relation to Acoustically Mediated Mate Choice in a Neotropical Frog

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    Pettitt, Beth Ann

    One aspect of communication not normally considered in studies of anuran amphibians involves the extent to which acoustic signals indicate the quality of parental care a male provides. My research examined this question in the golden rocket frog (Anomaloglossus beebei), a Neotropical dendrobatid that exhibits acoustically mediated mate choice and biparental care. I investigated the function of the male advertisement call of A. beebei in the context of female mate choice by testing the predictions of four hypotheses that have been proposed to explain the relationship between mate signals and male parental care quality. In addition, I conducted a series of studies on acoustic variability, female preferences for advertisement call traits and the importance of male parental care on offspring survival.

  18. Passeriformes: nest predators and prey in a Neotropical Savannah in Central Brazil

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    Leonardo F. França

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The identification of predators of birds' nests, crucial to a better understanding of predator-prey interactions, remains poorly known. Here we provide evidence that birds, and especially passerines, may depredate birds' nests in the Cerrado (Neotropical Savannah of Central Brazil. Data was collected primarily in a Conservation Unit (Estação Ecológica de Águas Emendadas during the breeding season, between 2003 and 2007. We report and discuss details on 14 events of nest predation, 12 of which by passerines, mostly by curl-crested jays - Cyanocorax cristatellus (Temminck, 1823. The results of our study suggest that the role of birds as nest predators in the Cerrado has been underestimated and needs to be further investigated.

  19. Plant diversity patterns in neotropical dry forests and their conservation implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banda-R, Karina; Delgado-Salinas, Alfonso; Dexter, Kyle G; Linares-Palomino, Reynaldo; Oliveira-Filho, Ary; Prado, Darién; Pullan, Martin; Quintana, Catalina; Riina, Ricarda; Rodríguez M, Gina M; Weintritt, Julia; Acevedo-Rodríguez, Pedro; Adarve, Juan; Álvarez, Esteban; Aranguren B, Anairamiz; Arteaga, Julián Camilo; Aymard, Gerardo; Castaño, Alejandro; Ceballos-Mago, Natalia; Cogollo, Álvaro; Cuadros, Hermes; Delgado, Freddy; Devia, Wilson; Dueñas, Hilda; Fajardo, Laurie; Fernández, Ángel; Fernández, Miller Ángel; Franklin, Janet; Freid, Ethan H; Galetti, Luciano A; Gonto, Reina; González-M, Roy; Graveson, Roger; Helmer, Eileen H; Idárraga, Álvaro; López, René; Marcano-Vega, Humfredo; Martínez, Olga G; Maturo, Hernán M; McDonald, Morag; McLaren, Kurt; Melo, Omar; Mijares, Francisco; Mogni, Virginia; Molina, Diego; Moreno, Natalia Del Pilar; Nassar, Jafet M; Neves, Danilo M; Oakley, Luis J; Oatham, Michael; Olvera-Luna, Alma Rosa; Pezzini, Flávia F; Dominguez, Orlando Joel Reyes; Ríos, María Elvira; Rivera, Orlando; Rodríguez, Nelly; Rojas, Alicia; Särkinen, Tiina; Sánchez, Roberto; Smith, Melvin; Vargas, Carlos; Villanueva, Boris; Pennington, R Toby

    2016-09-23

    Seasonally dry tropical forests are distributed across Latin America and the Caribbean and are highly threatened, with less than 10% of their original extent remaining in many countries. Using 835 inventories covering 4660 species of woody plants, we show marked floristic turnover among inventories and regions, which may be higher than in other neotropical biomes, such as savanna. Such high floristic turnover indicates that numerous conservation areas across many countries will be needed to protect the full diversity of tropical dry forests. Our results provide a scientific framework within which national decision-makers can contextualize the floristic significance of their dry forest at a regional and continental scale. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  20. Morphogenia: a new genus of the Neotropical tribe Jubini (Coleoptera, Staphylinidae, Pselaphinae) from the Brazilian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Joseph

    2014-01-01

    A new genus and species of the large Neotropical pselaphine tribe Jubini is described from Manaus, Brazil, based on material preserved in the Natural History Museum, London. Morphogenia struhli gen. et sp. n. represents the possible sister taxon of the abundant and speciose genus Barrojuba Park, sharing with it the putatively derived condition of anterolaterally shifted vertexal foveae, producing a smoothly convex vertex devoid of fovea or sulci. However, unlike Barrojuba, Morphogenia retains a plesiomorphic antebasal sulcus on the pronotum in both sexes, and additionally lacks elaborate abdominal fovea-like pockets and teeth on the lateral margins of the pronotum that are typical of Barrojuba. The genus is also unusual among jubine genera in lacking the characteristic V- or Y-shaped gular carina. In contrast to the commonly-collected Barrojuba, specimens of Morphogenia are absent in extensive jubine collections housed in museums in the United States, indicating that the new taxon may be relatively scarce or localised.

  1. An illustrated key to Neotropical species of the genus Meteorus Haliday (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Euphorinae

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    Helmuth Aguirre

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available 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: M. albistigma, M. carolae, M. eurysaccavorus, M. fallacavus, M. flavistigma, M. haimowitzi, M. magnoculus, M. martinezi, M. microcavus, M. noctuivorus and M. orion. Expanded range distributions are recorded for M. andreae, M. farallonensis, M. guineverae, M. jerodi, M. kraussi, M. papiliovorus and M. quimbayensis. The host of M. jerodi is reported for the first time: a noctuid larva feeding on Asteraceae. Meteorus papiliovorus is recorded attacking Papilionidae larvae in Ecuador, therefore displaying a similar host family preference as formerly documented from Costa Rica and Colombia.

  2. Cross-amplification and characterization of microsatellite loci for the Neotropical orchid genus Epidendrum

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    Fábio Pinheiro

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study we tested the cross-amplification of 33 microsatellite loci previously developed for two closely related Neotropical orchid genera (Epidendrum and Laelia. A set of ten loci were polymorphic across five examined species (20 individuals each with 2 to 15 alleles per locus. The mean expected and observed heterozygosity (average across species ranged from 0.34 to 0.82 and from 0.27 to 0.85, respectively. In addition we tested all loci in 35 species representative of the genus Epidendrum. Of these, 26 loci showed successful amplification. Cross-application of these loci represent a potential source of co-dominant markers for evolutionary, ecological and conservation studies in this important orchid genus.

  3. On Neotropical Merophysiinae with descriptions of a new genus and new species (Coleoptera, Endomychidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arriaga-Varela, Emmanuel; Tomaszewska, Wioletta; Huo, Lizhi; Seidel, Matthias

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Intensive survey of museum collections and new field collecting resulted in discovery of six new, closely related species of the Neotropical Merophysiinae. A new species of the genus Lycoperdinella Champion, L. boliviensis sp. n., from Bolivia and Brazil, and five new species from Mexico for which a new genus is proposed here as Rueckeria gen. n.: R. inecol (type species), R. nigrileonis, R. ocelotl, R. puma, R. skelleyi spp. n., have been discovered. Lycoperdinella, Rueckeria gen. n., L. subcaeca Champion and all new species are diagnosed, described, and illustrated. Keys to the species of Lycoperdinella and Rueckeria and a distribution map are provided. A lectotype of Lycoperdinella subcaeca Champion, 1913 is designated. Molecular barcodes of three new species of Rueckeria are provided in order to help with the identification of these taxa. PMID:29674866

  4. Neotropical Siluriformes as a Model for Insights on Determining Biodiversity of Animal Groups.

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    Renata Rúbia Ota

    Full Text Available We performed an analysis of the descriptions of new species of Neotropical Siluriformes (catfishes to estimate the number of new species that remain to be described for a complete knowledge on biodiversity of this order, to verify the effectiveness of taxonomic support, and to identify trends and present relevant information for future policies. We conducted a literature review of species descriptions between January 1990 and August 2014. The following metadata were recorded from each article: year of publication, number of species, journal and impact factor, family(s of the described species, number of authors, age of the authors and coauthors, country of the first author's institution and ecoregion of the type-locality. From accumulation of descriptions, we built an estimate model for number of species remaining to be described. We found 595 described species in 402 articles. The data demonstrated that there has been an increased understanding of the diversity of Siluriformes over the last 25 years in the Neotropical region, although 35% of the species still remain to be described. The model estimated that with the current trends and incentives, the biodiversity will be known in almost seven decades. We have reinforced the idea that greater joint efforts should be made by society and the scientific community to obtain this knowledge in a shorter period of time through enhanced programs for promoting science, training and the advancement of professionals before undiscovered species become extinct. The model built in this study can be used for similar estimates of other groups of animals.

  5. Morphology and efficiency of a specialized foraging behavior, sediment sifting, in neotropical cichlid fishes.

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    Hernán López-Fernández

    Full Text Available Understanding of relationships between morphology and ecological performance can help to reveal how natural selection drives biological diversification. We investigate relationships between feeding behavior, foraging performance and morphology within a diverse group of teleost fishes, and examine the extent to which associations can be explained by evolutionary relatedness. Morphological adaptation associated with sediment sifting was examined using a phylogenetic linear discriminant analysis on a set of ecomorphological traits from 27 species of Neotropical cichlids. For most sifting taxa, feeding behavior could be effectively predicted by a linear discriminant function of ecomorphology across multiple clades of sediment sifters, and this pattern could not be explained by shared evolutionary history alone. Additionally, we tested foraging efficiency in seven Neotropical cichlid species, five of which are specialized benthic feeders with differing head morphology. Efficiency was evaluated based on the degree to which invertebrate prey could be retrieved at different depths of sediment. Feeding performance was compared both with respect to feeding mode and species using a phylogenetic ANCOVA, with substrate depth as a covariate. Benthic foraging performance was constant across sediment depths in non-sifters but declined with depth in sifters. The non-sifting Hypsophrys used sweeping motions of the body and fins to excavate large pits to uncover prey; this tactic was more efficient for consuming deeply buried invertebrates than observed among sediment sifters. Findings indicate that similar feeding performance among sediment-sifting cichlids extracting invertebrate prey from shallow sediment layers reflects constraints associated with functional morphology and, to a lesser extent, phylogeny.

  6. Canopy area of large trees explains aboveground biomass variations across neotropical forest landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Victoria; Saatchi, Sassan; Clark, David B.; Keller, Michael; Vincent, Grégoire; Ferraz, António; Espírito-Santo, Fernando; d'Oliveira, Marcus V. N.; Kaki, Dahlia; Chave, Jérôme

    2018-06-01

    Large tropical trees store significant amounts of carbon in woody components and their distribution plays an important role in forest carbon stocks and dynamics. Here, we explore the properties of a new lidar-derived index, the large tree canopy area (LCA) defined as the area occupied by canopy above a reference height. We hypothesize that this simple measure of forest structure representing the crown area of large canopy trees could consistently explain the landscape variations in forest volume and aboveground biomass (AGB) across a range of climate and edaphic conditions. To test this hypothesis, we assembled a unique dataset of high-resolution airborne light detection and ranging (lidar) and ground inventory data in nine undisturbed old-growth Neotropical forests, of which four had plots large enough (1 ha) to calibrate our model. We found that the LCA for trees greater than 27 m (˜ 25-30 m) in height and at least 100 m2 crown size in a unit area (1 ha), explains more than 75 % of total forest volume variations, irrespective of the forest biogeographic conditions. When weighted by average wood density of the stand, LCA can be used as an unbiased estimator of AGB across sites (R2 = 0.78, RMSE = 46.02 Mg ha-1, bias = -0.63 Mg ha-1). Unlike other lidar-derived metrics with complex nonlinear relations to biomass, the relationship between LCA and AGB is linear and remains unique across forest types. A comparison with tree inventories across the study sites indicates that LCA correlates best with the crown area (or basal area) of trees with diameter greater than 50 cm. The spatial invariance of the LCA-AGB relationship across the Neotropics suggests a remarkable regularity of forest structure across the landscape and a new technique for systematic monitoring of large trees for their contribution to AGB and changes associated with selective logging, tree mortality and other types of tropical forest disturbance and dynamics.

  7. Body Size Adaptations to Altitudinal Climatic Variation in Neotropical Grasshoppers of the Genus Sphenarium (Orthoptera: Pyrgomorphidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    Altitudinal clines in body size can result from the effects of natural and sexual selection on growth rates and developing times in seasonal environments. Short growing and reproductive seasons constrain the body size that adults can attain and their reproductive success. Little is known about the effects of altitudinal climatic variation on the diversification of Neotropical insects. In central Mexico, in addition to altitude, highly heterogeneous topography generates diverse climates that can occur even at the same latitude. Altitudinal variation and heterogeneous topography open an opportunity to test the relative impact of climatic variation on body size adaptations. In this study, we investigated the relationship between altitudinal climatic variation and body size, and the divergence rates of sexual size dimorphism (SSD) in Neotropical grasshoppers of the genus Sphenarium using a phylogenetic comparative approach. In order to distinguish the relative impact of natural and sexual selection on the diversification of the group, we also tracked the altitudinal distribution