Sample records for oklahoma tallgrass prairie

  1. Effect of frame size and season on enteric methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2)emissions in Angus brood cows grazing native tall-grass prairie in central Oklahoma USA (United States)

    Effect of frame size and season on enteric methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in Angus brood cows grazing native tall-grass prairie in central Oklahoma, USA J.P.S. Neel USDA ARS, El Reno, OK A reduction in enteric CH4 production in ruminants is associated with improved production effic...

  2. Interspecific nutrient transfer in a tallgrass prairie plant community

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    Walter, L.E.F.; Hartnett, D.C.; Hetrick, B.A.D.; Schwab, A.P.


    Interplant nutrient transfer may be an important ecological process in grasslands, and may significantly influence plant neighborhood interactions. We investigated the potential for phosphorus transfer between the dominant grass Andropogon gerardii and several neighboring plant species in tallgrass prairie via a field 32PO4 labelling experiment. The mean amount of 32P received from donor shoots differed significantly among neighboring species and decreased with increasing distance from the donor. In general, forbs and cool-season C3 grasses received more labelled 32P than warm-season C4 grasses. Phosphorus transfer occurred over distances up to 0.5 m. The effects of species and distance on movement of phosphorus changed with increasing time after labelling. The relative mass of receiver and donor shoots did not affect amounts of 32P transfer. A benomyl fungicide treatment, applied to suppress mycorrhizal activity, likely did not affect existing vegetative hyphae and did not affect the amount of 32P transferred. These studies demonstrate that: (1) phosphorus is transferred among neighboring species in tallgrass prairie plant communities, (2) phosphorus may be transferred over significantly greater distances than reported in other grasslands, and (3) there is differential transfer among co-occurring species. Hypothesized mechanisms accounting for these patterns in tallgrass prairie include mycorrhizal hyphal interconnections and/or extensive and differential root and rhizosphere overlap among neighboring species

  3. Urban Rights-of-Way as Reservoirs for Tall-Grass Prairie Plants and Butterflies (United States)

    Leston, Lionel; Koper, Nicola


    Urban rights-of-way may be potential reservoirs of tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies. To determine if this is true, in 2007-2008, we conducted vegetation surveys of species richness and cover, and butterfly surveys of species richness and abundance, along 52 transmission lines and four remnant prairies in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We detected many prairie plants and butterflies within transmission lines. Some unmowed and infrequently managed transmission lines had native plant species richness and total percent cover of native plants comparable to that of similar-sized remnant tall-grass prairies in the region. Although we did not find significant differences in overall native butterfly numbers or species richness between rights-of-way and remnant prairies, we found lower numbers of some prairie butterflies along frequently mowed rights-of-way than within remnant tall-grass prairies. We also observed higher butterfly species richness along sites with more native plant species. By reducing mowing and spraying and reintroducing tall-grass prairie plants, urban rights-of-way could serve as extensive reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies in urban landscapes. Eventually, managing urban rights-of-way as reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and animals could contribute to the restoration of tall-grass prairie in the North American Midwest.

  4. Urban Rights-of-Way as Reservoirs for Tall-Grass Prairie Plants and Butterflies. (United States)

    Leston, Lionel; Koper, Nicola


    Urban rights-of-way may be potential reservoirs of tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies. To determine if this is true, in 2007-2008, we conducted vegetation surveys of species richness and cover, and butterfly surveys of species richness and abundance, along 52 transmission lines and four remnant prairies in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We detected many prairie plants and butterflies within transmission lines. Some unmowed and infrequently managed transmission lines had native plant species richness and total percent cover of native plants comparable to that of similar-sized remnant tall-grass prairies in the region. Although we did not find significant differences in overall native butterfly numbers or species richness between rights-of-way and remnant prairies, we found lower numbers of some prairie butterflies along frequently mowed rights-of-way than within remnant tall-grass prairies. We also observed higher butterfly species richness along sites with more native plant species. By reducing mowing and spraying and reintroducing tall-grass prairie plants, urban rights-of-way could serve as extensive reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies in urban landscapes. Eventually, managing urban rights-of-way as reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and animals could contribute to the restoration of tall-grass prairie in the North American Midwest.

  5. Annual Fire, Mowing and Fertilization Effects on Two Cicada Species (Homoptera: Cicadidae) in Tallgrass Prairie (United States)

    Mac A. Callaham; Matt R. Whiles; John M. Blair


    In tallgrass prairie, cicadas emerge annually, are abundant and their emergence can be an important flux of energy and nutrients. However, factors influencing the distribution and abundance of these cicadas are virtually unknown. We examined cicada emergence in plots from a long-term (13 y) experimental manipulation involving common tallgrass prairie management...

  6. Relatedness of Macrophomina phaseolina isolates from tallgrass prairie, maize, soybean and sorghum. (United States)

    Saleh, A A; Ahmed, H U; Todd, T C; Travers, S E; Zeller, K A; Leslie, J F; Garrett, K A


    Agricultural and wild ecosystems may interact through shared pathogens such as Macrophomina phaseolina, a generalist clonal fungus with more than 284 plant hosts that is likely to become more important under climate change scenarios of increased heat and drought stress. To evaluate the degree of subdivision in populations of M. phaseolina in Kansas agriculture and wildlands, we compared 143 isolates from maize fields adjacent to tallgrass prairie, nearby sorghum fields, widely dispersed soybean fields and isolates from eight plant species in tallgrass prairie. Isolate growth phenotypes were evaluated on a medium containing chlorate. Genetic characteristics were analysed based on amplified fragment length polymorphisms and the sequence of the rDNA-internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. The average genetic similarity was 58% among isolates in the tallgrass prairie, 71% in the maize fields, 75% in the sorghum fields and 80% in the dispersed soybean fields. The isolates were divided into four clusters: one containing most of the isolates from maize and soybean, two others containing isolates from wild plants and sorghum, and a fourth containing a single isolate recovered from Solidago canadensis in the tallgrass prairie. Most of the sorghum isolates had the dense phenotype on media containing chlorate, while those from other hosts had either feathery or restricted phenotypes. These results suggest that the tallgrass prairie supports a more diverse population of M. phaseolina per area than do any of the crop species. Subpopulations show incomplete specialization by host. These results also suggest that inoculum produced in agriculture may influence tallgrass prairie communities, and conversely that different pathogen subpopulations in tallgrass prairie can interact there to generate 'hybrids' with novel genetic profiles and pathogenic capabilities.

  7. Ecological consequences of shifting the timing of burning tallgrass prairie.

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    E Gene Towne

    Full Text Available In the Kansas Flint Hills, grassland burning is conducted during a relatively narrow window because management recommendations for the past 40 years have been to burn only in late spring. Widespread prescribed burning within this restricted time frame frequently creates smoke management issues downwind. A potential remedy for the concentrated smoke production in late spring is to expand burning to times earlier in the year. Yet, previous research suggested that burning in winter or early spring reduces plant productivity and cattle weight gain while increasing the proportion of undesirable plant species. In order to better understand the ecological consequences of burning at different times of the year, plant production and species abundance were measured for 20 years on ungrazed watersheds burned annually in autumn, winter, or spring. We found that there were no significant differences in total grass production among the burns on either upland or lowland topographic positions, although spring burned watersheds had higher grass culm production and lower forb biomass than autumn and winter burned watersheds. Burning in autumn or winter broadened the window of grass productivity response to precipitation, which reduces susceptibility to mid-season drought. Burning in autumn or winter also increased the phenological range of species by promoting cool-season graminoids without a concomitant decrease in warm-season grasses, potentially widening the seasonal window of high-quality forage. Incorporating autumn and winter burns into the overall portfolio of tallgrass prairie management should increase the flexibility in managing grasslands, promote biodiversity, and minimize air quality issues caused by en masse late-spring burning with little negative consequences for cattle production.

  8. Sensitivity of vegetation indices and gross primary production of tallgrass prairie to severe drought

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    Wagle, Pradeep; Xiao, Xiangming; Torn, Margaret S.; Cook, David R.; Matamala, Roser; Fischer, Marc L.; Jin, Cui; Dong, Jinwei; Biradar, Chandrashekhar


    Drought affects vegetation photosynthesis and growth.Many studies have used the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), which is calculated as the normalized ratio between near infrared and red spectral bands in satellite images, to evaluate the response of vegetation to drought. In this study, we examined the impacts of drought on three vegetation indices (NDVI, enhanced vegetation index, EVI, and land surface water index, LSWI) and CO2 flux from three tallgrass prairie eddy flux tower sites in the U.S. Gross primary production (GPP) was also modeled using a satellite-based Vegetation Photosynthesis Model (VPM), and the modeled GPP (GPPVPM) was compared with the GPP (GPPEC) derived from eddy covariance measurements. Precipitation at two sites in Oklahoma was 30% below the historical mean in both years of the study period (2005–2006), while the site in Illinois did not experience drought in the 2005–2007 study period. The EVI explained the seasonal dynamics of GPP better than did NDVI. The LSWI dropped below zero during severe droughts in the growing season, showing its potential to track drought. The result shows that GPP was more sensitive to drought than were vegetation indices, and EVI and LSWI were more sensitive than NDVI. We developed a modified function (Wscalar), calculated as a function of LSWI, to account for the effect of severe droughts on GPP in VPM. The GPPVPM from the modified VPM accounted for the rapid reduction in GPP during severe droughts and the seasonal dynamics of GPPVPM agreed reasonably well with GPPEC. Our analysis shows that 8-day averaged values (temperature, vapor-pressure deficit) do not reflect the short-term extreme climate events well, suggesting that satellite based models may need to be run at daily or hourly scales, especially under unfavorable climatic conditions.

  9. Macroinvertebrates in North American tallgrass prairie soils: effects of fire, mowing, and fertilization on density and biomass (United States)

    M.A. Callaham; J.M. Blair; T.C. Todd; D.J. Kitchen; M.R. Whiles


    The responses of tallgrass prairie plant communities and ecosystem processes to fire and grazing are well characterized. However, responses of invertebrate consumer groups. and particularly soil-dwelling organisms, to these disturbances are not well known. At Konza Prairie Biological Station. we sampled soil macroinvertebrates in 1994 and 1999 as part of a long-term...

  10. Habitat edge, land management, and rates of brood parasitism in tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Patten, Michael A; Shochat, Eyal; Reinking, Dan L; Wolfe, Donald H; Sherrod, Steve K


    Bird populations in North America's grasslands have declined sharply in recent decades. These declines are traceable, in large part, to habitat loss, but management of tallgrass prairie also has an impact. An indirect source of decline potentially associated with management is brood parasitism by the Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater), which has had substantial negative impacts on many passerine hosts. Using a novel application of regression trees, we analyzed an extensive five-year set of nest data to test how management of tallgrass prairie affected rates of brood parasitism. We examined seven landscape features that may have been associated with parasitism: presence of edge, burning, or grazing, and distance of the nest from woody vegetation, water, roads, or fences. All five grassland passerines that we included in the analyses exhibited evidence of an edge effect: the Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum), Henslow's Sparrow (A. henslowii), Dickcissel (Spiza americana), Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus), and Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna). The edge was represented by narrow strips of woody vegetation occurring along roadsides cut through tallgrass prairie. The sparrows avoided nesting along these woody edges, whereas the other three species experienced significantly higher (1.9-5.3x) rates of parasitism along edges than in prairie. The edge effect could be related directly to increase in parasitism rate with decreased distance from woody vegetation. After accounting for edge effect in these three species, we found evidence for significantly higher (2.5-10.5x) rates of parasitism in grazed plots, particularly those burned in spring to increase forage, than in undisturbed prairie. Regression tree analysis proved to be an important tool for hierarchically parsing various landscape features that affect parasitism rates. We conclude that, on the Great Plains, rates of brood parasitism are strongly associated with relatively recent road cuts

  11. Functional consequences of climate change-induced plant species loss in a tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Craine, Joseph M; Nippert, Jesse B; Towne, E Gene; Tucker, Sally; Kembel, Steven W; Skibbe, Adam; McLauchlan, Kendra K


    Future climate change is likely to reduce the floristic diversity of grasslands. Yet the potential consequences of climate-induced plant species losses for the functioning of these ecosystems are poorly understood. We investigated how climate change might alter the functional composition of grasslands for Konza Prairie, a diverse tallgrass prairie in central North America. With species-specific climate envelopes, we show that a reduction in mean annual precipitation would preferentially remove species that are more abundant in the more productive lowland positions at Konza. As such, decreases in precipitation could reduce productivity not only by reducing water availability but by also removing species that inhabit the most productive areas and respond the most to climate variability. In support of this prediction, data on species abundance at Konza over 16 years show that species that are more abundant in lowlands than uplands are preferentially reduced in years with low precipitation. Climate change is likely to also preferentially remove species from particular functional groups and clades. For example, warming is forecast to preferentially remove perennials over annuals as well as Cyperaceae species. Despite these predictions, climate change is unlikely to unilaterally alter the functional composition of the tallgrass prairie flora, as many functional traits such as physiological drought tolerance and maximum photosynthetic rates showed little relationship with climate envelope parameters. In all, although climatic drying would indirectly alter grassland productivity through species loss patterns, the insurance afforded by biodiversity to ecosystem function is likely to be sustained in the face of climate change.

  12. Direct and indirect responses of tallgrass prairie butterflies to prescribed burning (United States)

    Vogel, Jennifer A.; Koford, Rolf R.; Debinski, Diane M.


    Fire is an important tool in the conservation and restoration of tallgrass prairie ecosystems. We investigated how both the vegetation composition and butterfly community of tallgrass prairie remnants changed in relation to the elapsed time (in months) since prescribed fire. Butterfly richness and butterfly abundance were positively correlated with the time since burn. Habitat-specialist butterfly richness recovery time was greater than 70 months post-fire and habitat-specialist butterfly abundance recovery time was approximately 50 months post-fire. Thus, recovery times for butterfly populations after prescribed fires in our study were potentially longer than those previously reported. We used Path Analysis to evaluate the relative contributions of the direct effect of time since fire and the indirect effects of time since fire through changes in vegetation composition on butterfly abundance. Path models highlighted the importance of the indirect effects of fire on habitat features, such as increases in the cover of bare ground. Because fire return intervals on managed prairie remnants are often less than 5 years, information on recovery times for habitat-specialist insect species are of great importance. ?? 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  13. A multivariate analysis of biophysical parameters of tallgrass prairie among land management practices and years (United States)

    Griffith, J.A.; Price, K.P.; Martinko, E.A.


    Six treatments of eastern Kansas tallgrass prairie - native prairie, hayed, mowed, grazed, burned and untreated - were studied to examine the biophysical effects of land management practices on grasslands. On each treatment, measurements of plant biomass, leaf area index, plant cover, leaf moisture and soil moisture were collected. In addition, measurements were taken of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), which is derived from spectral reflectance measurements. Measurements were taken in mid-June, mid-July and late summer of 1990 and 1991. Multivariate analysis of variance was used to determine whether there were differences in the set of variables among treatments and years. Follow-up tests included univariate t-tests to determine which variables were contributing to any significant difference. Results showed a significant difference (p treatments in the composite of parameters during each of the months sampled. In most treatment types, there was a significant difference between years within each month. The univariate tests showed, however, that only some variables, primarily soil moisture, were contributing to this difference. We conclude that biomass and % plant cover show the best potential to serve as long-term indicators of grassland condition as they generally were sensitive to effects of different land management practices but not to yearly change in weather conditions. NDVI was insensitive to precipitation differences between years in July for most treatments, but was not in the native prairie. Choice of sampling time is important for these parameters to serve effectively as indicators.

  14. Radiative surface temperatures of the burned and unburned areas in a tallgrass prairie

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    Asrar, G.; Harris, T.R.; Lapitan, R.L.; Cooper, D.I.


    This study was conducted in a natural tallgrass prairie area in the Flint Hills of Kansas. Our objective was to evaluate the surface radiative temperatures of burned and unburned treatments of the grassland as a means of delineating the areas covered by each treatment. Burning is used to remove the senescent vegetation resulting from the previous year's growth. Surface temperatures were obtained in situ and by an airborne scanner. Burned and unburned grass canopies had distinctly different diurnal surface radiative temperatures. Measurements of surface energy balance components revealed a difference in partitioning of the available energy between the two canopies, which resulted in the difference in their measured surface temperatures. The magnitude of this difference is dependent on the time of measurements and topographic conditions. (author)

  15. Assessing changes in biomass, productivity, and C and N stores following Juniperus virginiana forest expansion into tallgrass prairie

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    Norris, M. D.; Blair, J. M.; Johnson, L. C. [Kansas State Univ., Manhattan, KS (United States); McKane, R. B. [Environmental Protection Agency, Western Ecology Division, Corvallis, OR (United States)


    The objective of this study was to assess changes in plant productivity and above-ground plant biomass associated with red cedar forest expansion into areas formerly dominated by tallgrass prairie. Regionally appropriate allometric biomass regression equations were developed for the nondestructive estimation of red cedar biomass in eastern Kansas, followed by quantification of the carbon and nitrogen content of selected biomass components. The equations were applied, along with measurements of leaf litter production, to selected local stands of mature closed-canopy red cedars to estimate above-ground biomass, standing stocks of carbon and nitrogen and annual above-ground net primary productivity. Above-ground plant biomass for these red cedar-dominated sites ranged from 114,100 kg/ha for the youngest stand to 210,700 kg/ha for the oldest. Annual above-ground net primary productivity (ANPP) ranged from 7,250 to 10,440 kg/ha/yr for the oldest and younger red cedar stands respectively. The ANPP in comparable tallgrass prairie sites in this region averages 3,690 k/ha/yr, indicating a large increase in carbon uptake and above-ground storage as a result of the change from prairie to red cedar forests. Comparing these results with similar published data from other sites led to the conclusion that the widespread change from tallgrass to red cedars across the woodland-prairie ecotone has important consequences for regional carbon storage.37 refs., 3 tabs., 3 figs.

  16. Burning management in the tallgrass prairie affects root decomposition, soil food web structure and carbon flow (United States)

    Shaw, E. A.; Denef, K.; Milano de Tomasel, C.; Cotrufo, M. F.; Wall, D. H.


    Root litter decomposition is a major component of carbon (C) cycling in grasslands, where it provides energy and nutrients for soil microbes and fauna. This is especially important in grasslands where fire is a common management practice and removes aboveground litter accumulation. In this study, we investigated whether fire affects root decomposition and C flow through the belowground food web. In a greenhouse experiment, we applied 13C-enriched big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii) root litter to intact tallgrass prairie soil cores collected from annually burned (AB) and infrequently burned (IB) treatments at the Konza Prairie Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site. Incorporation of 13C into microbial phospholipid fatty acids and nematode trophic groups was measured on six occasions during a 180-day decomposition study to determine how C was translocated through the soil food web. Results showed significantly different soil communities between treatments and higher microbial abundance for IB. Root decomposition occurred rapidly and was significantly greater for AB. Microbes and their nematode consumers immediately assimilated root litter C in both treatments. Root litter C was preferentially incorporated in a few groups of microbes and nematodes, but depended on burn treatment: fungi, Gram-negative bacteria, Gram-positive bacteria, and fungivore nematodes for AB and only omnivore nematodes for IB. The overall microbial pool of root litter-derived C significantly increased over time but was not significantly different between burn treatments. The nematode pool of root litter-derived C also significantly increased over time, and was significantly higher for the AB treatment at 35 and 90 days after litter addition. In conclusion, the C flow from root litter to microbes to nematodes is not only measurable, but significant, indicating that higher nematode trophic levels are critical components of C flow during root decomposition which, in turn, is significantly

  17. Decline of Hesperia ottoe (Lepidoptera: Hesperiidae in Northern Tallgrass Prairie Preserves

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    Ann B. Swengel


    Full Text Available We counted butterflies on transect surveys during Hesperia ottoe flight period in 1988–2011 at tallgrass prairie preserves in four states (Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, divided into units cross-referenced to vegetation type and management history. H. ottoe occurred only in dry and sand prairie types, and was significantly more abundant in undegraded than semi-degraded prairie, and in discontinuous sod (with numerous unvegetated areas due to bare sand and/or rock outcrops than in continuous sod. This skipper was significantly more abundant in small sites compared to medium and large sites, even when the analysis was limited to undegraded prairie analyzed separately by sod type. H. ottoe was significantly under-represented in year-burn 0 (the first growing season after fire compared to an expected distribution proportional to survey effort. However, H. ottoe was also over-represented in fire-managed units compared to non-fire-managed units. However, by far most units and sites were in fire management and most populations declined to subdetection during this study. Peak abundance post-fire occurred in a later year-burn in discontinuous sod and was much higher than in continuous sod. We also analyze H. ottoe status and trend in midwestern prairie preserves by compiling a dataset of our and others’ butterfly surveys from 1974 to 2011. Only 1/9 sites with continuous sod had detectable H. ottoe in recent year(s. In discontinuous sod, 2/6 did, with two sites lacking data for the last few years. The number of years H. ottoe was still detectable after preservation and the number of years to consistent non-detection were both significantly higher in discontinuous than continuous sod. Both measures of population persistence averaged over twice as long in discontinuous than continuous sod, and correlated negatively with prairie size. The year when consistent non-detection began varied over several decades among sites. Despite the currently urgent

  18. Decline of Hesperia ottoe (Lepidoptera: Hesperiidae) in Northern Tallgrass Prairie Preserves. (United States)

    Swengel, Ann B; Swengel, Scott R


    We counted butterflies on transect surveys during Hesperia ottoe flight period in 1988-2011 at tallgrass prairie preserves in four states (Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin), divided into units cross-referenced to vegetation type and management history. H. ottoe occurred only in dry and sand prairie types, and was significantly more abundant in undegraded than semi-degraded prairie, and in discontinuous sod (with numerous unvegetated areas due to bare sand and/or rock outcrops) than in continuous sod. This skipper was significantly more abundant in small sites compared to medium and large sites, even when the analysis was limited to undegraded prairie analyzed separately by sod type. H. ottoe was significantly under-represented in year-burn 0 (the first growing season after fire) compared to an expected distribution proportional to survey effort. However, H. ottoe was also over-represented in fire-managed units compared to non-fire-managed units. However, by far most units and sites were in fire management and most populations declined to subdetection during this study. Peak abundance post-fire occurred in a later year-burn in discontinuous sod and was much higher than in continuous sod. We also analyze H. ottoe status and trend in midwestern prairie preserves by compiling a dataset of our and others' butterfly surveys from 1974 to 2011. Only 1/9 sites with continuous sod had detectable H. ottoe in recent year(s). In discontinuous sod, 2/6 did, with two sites lacking data for the last few years. The number of years H. ottoe was still detectable after preservation and the number of years to consistent non-detection were both significantly higher in discontinuous than continuous sod. Both measures of population persistence averaged over twice as long in discontinuous than continuous sod, and correlated negatively with prairie size. The year when consistent non-detection began varied over several decades among sites. Despite the currently urgent need to identify

  19. Effects of Grazing and Fire Frequency on Floristic Quality and its Relationship to Indicators of Soil Quality in Tallgrass Prairie. (United States)

    Manning, George C; Baer, Sara G; Blair, John M


    Fire and grazing are widely used to manage grasslands for conservation purposes, but few studies have evaluated the effects of these drivers on the conservation value of plant communities measured by the floristic quality index (FQI). Further, the influence of fire and grazing on soil properties and functions are difficult for land managers and restoration practitioners to assess. The objectives of this study were to: (1) quantify the independent and interactive effects of grazing and fire frequency on floristic quality in native tallgrass prairie to provide potential benchmarks for community assessment, and (2) to explore whether floristic quality can serve as an indicator of soil structure and function for more holistic ecosystem assessments. A factorial combination of fire frequencies (1-2, 4, and 20 years return intervals) and grazing (by bison or ungrazed) treatments were sampled for plant species composition, and for several indicators of soil quality in lowland tallgrass prairie. Floristic quality, diversity, and richness were higher in grazed than ungrazed prairie over all fire frequencies (P soil bulk density were also higher in grazed prairie soil over all fire frequencies (P soil N were positively correlated with FQI (P soil N pools are more strongly influenced by grazing than fire and that floristic quality can be an indicator of total soil C and N stocks in never cultivated lowland prairie.

  20. Effects of Grazing and Fire Frequency on Floristic Quality and its Relationship to Indicators of Soil Quality in Tallgrass Prairie (United States)

    Manning, George C.; Baer, Sara G.; Blair, John M.


    Fire and grazing are widely used to manage grasslands for conservation purposes, but few studies have evaluated the effects of these drivers on the conservation value of plant communities measured by the floristic quality index (FQI). Further, the influence of fire and grazing on soil properties and functions are difficult for land managers and restoration practitioners to assess. The objectives of this study were to: (1) quantify the independent and interactive effects of grazing and fire frequency on floristic quality in native tallgrass prairie to provide potential benchmarks for community assessment, and (2) to explore whether floristic quality can serve as an indicator of soil structure and function for more holistic ecosystem assessments. A factorial combination of fire frequencies (1-2, 4, and 20 years return intervals) and grazing (by bison or ungrazed) treatments were sampled for plant species composition, and for several indicators of soil quality in lowland tallgrass prairie. Floristic quality, diversity, and richness were higher in grazed than ungrazed prairie over all fire frequencies ( P total N, and soil bulk density were also higher in grazed prairie soil over all fire frequencies ( P total organic C, and total soil N were positively correlated with FQI ( P quality and soil N pools are more strongly influenced by grazing than fire and that floristic quality can be an indicator of total soil C and N stocks in never cultivated lowland prairie.

  1. Developing a framework for evaluating tallgrass prairie reconstruction methods and management (United States)

    Larson, Diane L.; Ahlering, Marissa; Drobney, Pauline; Esser, Rebecca; Larson, Jennifer L.; Viste-Sparkman, Karen


    The thousands of hectares of prairie reconstructed each year in the tallgrass prairie biome can provide a valuable resource for evaluation of seed mixes, planting methods, and post-planting management if methods used and resulting characteristics of the prairies are recorded and compiled in a publicly accessible database. The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of such data to understand the outcomes of reconstructions over a 10-year period at two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuges. Variables included number of species planted, seed source (combine-harvest or combine-harvest plus hand-collected), fire history, and planting method and season. In 2015 we surveyed vegetation on 81 reconstructions and calculated proportion of planted species observed; introduced species richness; native species richness, evenness and diversity; and mean coefficient of conservatism. We conducted exploratory analyses to learn how implied communities based on seed mix compared with observed vegetation; which seeding or management variables were influential in the outcome of the reconstructions; and consistency of responses between the two refuges. Insights from this analysis include: 1) proportion of planted species observed in 2015 declined as planted richness increased, but lack of data on seeding rate per species limited conclusions about value of added species; 2) differing responses to seeding and management between the two refuges suggest the importance of geographic variability that could be addressed using a public database; and 3) variables such as fire history are difficult to quantify consistently and should be carefully evaluated in the context of a public data repository.

  2. Variable effects of dipteran parasitoids and management treatment on grasshopper fecundity in a tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Laws, A N; Joern, A


    Grasshoppers host a number of parasitoids, but little is known about their impact on grasshopper life history attributes or how those impacts may vary with land use. Here, we report on a three-year survey of nine grasshopper species in a tallgrass prairie managed with fire and bison grazing treatments. We measured parasitoid prevalence and the impact of parasitoid infection on grasshopper fecundity to determine if grasshopper-parasitoid interactions varied with management treatment. Adult female grasshoppers were collected every three weeks from eight watersheds managed with different prescribed burning and grazing treatments. Grasshopper fecundity with and without parasitoids was estimated through dissections of reproductive tracts. Dipteran parasitoids from two families (Nemestrinidae and Tachinidae) were observed infecting grasshoppers. We found significant effects of grazing treatment, but not burn interval, on grasshopper-parasitoid interactions. Parasitoids were three times more abundant in watersheds with bison grazing than in ungrazed watersheds, and the relative abundance of nemestrinid and tachinid flies varied with grazing treatment. Parasitoid prevalence varied among grasshopper species from grasshopper fecundity, with stronger effects on current reproduction than on past reproduction. Furthermore, current fecundity in parasitized grasshoppers was lower in grazed watersheds compared to ungrazed watersheds. Nemestrinid parasitoids generally had stronger impacts on grasshopper fecundity than tachinid parasitoids, the effects of which were more variable.

  3. Density mediates grasshopper performance in response to temperature manipulation and spider predation in tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Laws, A N; Joern, A


    Species interactions are often context-dependent, where outcomes require an understanding of influences among multiple biotic and abiotic factors. However, it remains unclear how abiotic factors such as temperature combine with important biotic factors such as density-dependent food limitation and predation to influence species interactions. Using a native grassland - grasshopper - wolf spider model food chain in tallgrass prairie, we conducted a manipulative field experiment to examine how predator-prey interactions respond to manipulations of temperature, grasshopper density, and food chain length. We find that grasshopper performance responses to temperature and predator treatments were density dependent. At high densities, grasshopper survival decreased with increased temperature when no spiders were present. When spiders were present, grasshopper survival was reduced, and this effect was strongest in the cooled treatment. In contrast, grasshopper survival did not vary significantly with spider presence or among temperature treatments at low grasshopper densities. Our results indicate that context-dependent species interactions are common and highlight the importance of understanding how and when key biotic and abiotic factors combine to influence species interactions.

  4. Long-term nitrogen amendment alters the diversity and assemblage of soil bacterial communities in tallgrass prairie.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph D Coolon

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic changes are altering the environmental conditions and the biota of ecosystems worldwide. In many temperate grasslands, such as North American tallgrass prairie, these changes include alteration in historically important disturbance regimes (e.g., frequency of fires and enhanced availability of potentially limiting nutrients, particularly nitrogen. Such anthropogenically-driven changes in the environment are known to elicit substantial changes in plant and consumer communities aboveground, but much less is known about their effects on soil microbial communities. Due to the high diversity of soil microbes and methodological challenges associated with assessing microbial community composition, relatively few studies have addressed specific taxonomic changes underlying microbial community-level responses to different fire regimes or nutrient amendments in tallgrass prairie. We used deep sequencing of the V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene to explore the effects of contrasting fire regimes and nutrient enrichment on soil bacterial communities in a long-term (20 yrs experiment in native tallgrass prairie in the eastern Central Plains. We focused on responses to nutrient amendments coupled with two extreme fire regimes (annual prescribed spring burning and complete fire exclusion. The dominant bacterial phyla identified were Proteobacteria, Verrucomicrobia, Bacteriodetes, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes, and Actinobacteria and made up 80% of all taxa quantified. Chronic nitrogen enrichment significantly impacted bacterial community diversity and community structure varied according to nitrogen treatment, but not phosphorus enrichment or fire regime. We also found significant responses of individual bacterial groups including Nitrospira and Gammaproteobacteria to long-term nitrogen enrichment. Our results show that soil nitrogen enrichment can significantly alter bacterial community diversity, structure, and individual taxa abundance, which have

  5. Bison grazing increases arthropod abundance and diversity in a tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Moran, Matthew D


    How grazing-induced ecosystem changes by ungulates indirectly affect other consumers is a question of great interest. I investigated the effect of grazing by American Bison (Bos bison L.) on an arthropod community in tallgrass prairie. Grazing increased the abundance of arthropods, an increase that was present in both herbivorous and carnivorous assemblages, but not in detritivores. The increase in herbivores and reduction in plant biomass from grazing resulted in an arthropod herbivore load almost three times higher in grazed plots compared with controls. Among herbivores, the sap-feeding insect guild was dramatically more abundant, while chewing herbivores were not affected. Herbivorous and carnivorous arthropod richness was higher in grazed plots, although the response was strongest among herbivores. Arthropod abundance on individual grasses and forbs was significantly higher in grazed areas, while plant type had no effect on abundance, indicating that the change was ecosystem-wide and not simply in response to a reduction in grass biomass from grazing. The response of arthropods to grazing was strongest in the early part of the growing season. Published research shows that ungulate grazing, although decreasing available biomass to other consumers, enhances plant quality by increasing nitrogen level in plants. The arthropod results of this study suggest higher plant quality outweighs the potential negative competitive effects of plant biomass removal, although other activities of bison could not be ruled out as the causative mechanism. Because arthropods are extremely abundant organisms in grasslands and a food source for other consumers, bison may represent valuable management tools for maintaining biodiversity.

  6. Influence of richness and seeding density on invasion resistance in experimental tallgrass prairie restorations (United States)

    Nemec, Kristine T.; Allen, Craig R.; Helzer, Christopher J.; Wedin, David A.


    In recent years, agricultural producers and non-governmental organizations and agencies have restored thousands of hectares of cropland to grassland in the Great Plains of the United States. However, little is known about the relationships between richness and seeding density in these restorations and resistance to invasive plant species. We assessed the effects of richness and seeding density on resistance to invasive and other unseeded plant species in experimental tallgrass prairie plots in central Nebraska. In 2006, twenty-four 55 m × 55 m plots were planted with six replicates in each of four treatments: high richness (97 species typically planted by The Nature Conservancy), at low and high seeding densities, and low richness (15 species representing a typical Conservation Reserve Program mix, CP25), at low and high seeding densities. There was a significant negative relationship between richness and basal cover of unseeded perennial forbs/legumes and unseeded perennial/annual grasses, abundance of bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare), and the number of inflorescences removed from smooth brome (Bromus inermis) transplants. Invasion resistance may have been higher in the high richness treatments because of the characteristics of the dominant species in these plots or because of greater interspecific competition for limiting resources among forbs/legumes with neighboring plants belonging to the same functional group. Seeding density was not important in affecting invasion resistance, except in the cover of unseeded grasses. Increasing seed mix richness may be more effective than increasing the seeding density for decreasing invasion by unseeded perennial species, bull thistle, and smooth brome.

  7. Soil organic matter dynamics in a North America tallgrass prairie after 9 yr of experimental warming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X. Cheng


    Full Text Available The influence of global warming on soil organic matter (SOM dynamics in terrestrial ecosystems remains unclear. In this study, we combined soil fractionation with isotope analyses to examine SOM dynamics after nine years of experimental warming in a North America tallgrass prairie. Soil samples from the control plots and the warmed plots were separated into four aggregate sizes (>2000 μm, 250–2000 μm, 53–250 μm, and <53 μm, and three density fractions (free light fraction – LF, intra-aggregate particulate organic matter – iPOM, and mineral-associated organic matter – mSOM. All fractions were analyzed for their carbon (C and nitrogen (N content, and δ13C and δ15N values. Warming did not significantly effect soil aggregate distribution and stability but increased C4-derived C input into all fractions with the greatest in LF. Warming also stimulated decay rates of C in whole soil and all aggregate sizes. C in LF turned over faster than that in iPOM in the warmed soils. The δ15N values of soil fractions were more enriched in the warmed soils than those in the control, indicating that warming accelerated loss of soil N. The δ15N values changed from low to high, while C:N ratios changed from high to low in the order LF, iPOM, and mSOM due to increased degree of decomposition and mineral association. Overall, warming increased the input of C4-derived C by 11.6 %, which was offset by the accelerated loss of soil C. Our results suggest that global warming simultaneously stimulates C input via shift in species composition and decomposition of SOM, resulting in negligible net change in soil C.

  8. Repeated burning of eastern tallgrass prairie increases richness and diversity, stabilizing late successional vegetation. (United States)

    Bowles, Marlin L; Jones, Michael D


    Understanding temporal effects of fire frequency on plant species diversity and vegetation structure is critical for managing tallgrass prairie (TGP), which occupies a mid-continental longitudinal precipitation and productivity gradient. Eastern TGP has contributed little information toward understanding whether vegetation-fire interactions are uniform or change across this biome. We resampled 34 fire-managed mid- and late-successional ungrazed TGP remnants occurring across a dry to wet-mesic moisture gradient in the Chicago region of Illinois, USA. We compared hypotheses that burning acts either as a stabilizing force or causes change in diversity and structure, depending upon fire frequency and successional stage. Based on western TGP, we expected a unimodal species richness distribution across a cover-productivity gradient, variable functional group responses to fire frequency, and a negative relationship between fire frequency and species richness. Species diversity was unimodal across the cover gradient and was more strongly humpbacked in stands with greater fire frequency. In support of a stabilizing hypothesis, temporal similarity of late-successional vegetation had a logarithmic relationship with increasing fire frequency, while richness and evenness remained stable. Temporal similarity within mid-successional stands was not correlated with fire frequency, while richness increased and evenness decreased over time. Functional group responses to fire frequency were variable. Summer forb richness increased under high fire frequency, while C4 grasses, spring forbs, and nitrogen-fixing species decreased with fire exclusion. On mesic and wet-mesic sites, vegetation structure measured by the ratio of woody to graminoid species was negatively correlated with abundance of forbs and with fire frequency. Our findings that species richness responds unimodally to an environmental-productivity gradient, and that fire exclusion increases woody vegetation and leads to loss

  9. Relative effects of precipitation variability and warming on tallgrass prairie ecosystem function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. A. Fay


    Full Text Available Precipitation and temperature drive many aspects of terrestrial ecosystem function. Climate change scenarios predict increasing precipitation variability and temperature, and long term experiments are required to evaluate the ecosystem consequences of interannual climate variation, increased growing season (intra-annual rainfall variability, and warming. We present results from an experiment applying increased growing season rainfall variability and year round warming in native tallgrass prairie. During ten years of study, total growing season rainfall varied 2-fold, and we found ~50–200% interannual variability in plant growth and aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP, leaf carbon assimilation (ACO2, and soil CO2 efflux (JCO2 despite only ~40% variation in mean volumetric soil water content (0–15 cm, Θ15. Interannual variation in soil moisture was thus amplified in most measures of ecosystem response. Differences between years in Θ15 explained the greatest portion (14–52% of the variation in these processes. Experimentally increased intra-annual season rainfall variability doubled the amplitude of intra-annual soil moisture variation and reduced Θ15 by 15%, causing most ecosystem processes to decrease 8–40% in some or all years with increased rainfall variability compared to ambient rainfall timing, suggesting reduced ecosystem rainfall use efficiency. Warming treatments increased soil temperature at 5 cm depth, particularly during spring, fall, and winter. Warming advanced canopy green up in spring, increased winter JCO2, and reduced summer JCO2 and forb ANPP, suggesting that the effects of warming differed in cooler versus warmer parts of the year. We conclude that (1 major ecosystem processes in this grassland may be substantially altered by predicted changes in

  10. Effect of vegetation on the energy balance and evapotranspiration in tallgrass prairie: a paired study with eddy covariance systems (United States)

    Sun, X.; Zou, C.; Wilcox, B. P.; Stebler, E.


    Whole-year measurement with eddy covariance system was carried out over two adjoining plots with contrasting vegetation coverage in tallgrass prairie, one was treated with herbicide and mowing while the other one kept as undisturbed control. The magnitude and phase difference between soil heat storage and ground heat flux were explicitly examined for its relative weights and energy balance. Surface turbulent flux (sensible heat and latent heat) accounted for about 85% of available energy at both sites, implying that vegetation coverage didn't significantly influence the closure scenario of energy imbalance. The seasonal and daily pattern of energy partitioning were dramatically different between the contrasting sites during growing season. The treated site received slightly lower net radiation due to high albedo, had higher sensible heat, and reduced latent heat due to reduction on transpiration. Annual evapotranspiration (ET) in treated site was only accounts for about 73% of annual ET in control. Meanwhile, lower surface conductance and decoupling factor showed that vegetation removal would increase the sensibility of ET to vapor pressure deficit and soil drought. ET dynamics is controlled by leaf area and net radiation when soil moisture is high, while soil drought caused stomata closure and subdued ET during drought. Stomata closure and transpiration reduction caused decline in ET, surface conductance, and decoupling factor. Soil moisture storage served as an important reservoir to meet peak ET demand during growing season. In summary, ET was the dominant component of water balance in tallgrass prairie, and any land management alterring the albedo, soil mositure storage, or canopy phenology (e.g., NDVI) could significantly affect energy and water budgets in .

  11. Response of soil microbial and invertebrate communities to tracked vehicle disturbance in tallgrass prairie (United States)

    P.S. Althoff; T.C. Todd; S.J. Thien; M.A. Callaham


    Soil biota drive fundamental ecosystem processes such as decomposition, nutrient cycling, and maintenance of soil structure. They are especially active in grassland ecosystems such as the tallgrass by heterotrophic soil organisms. Because both soil microbes and soil fauna display perturbation responses that integrate the physical, chemical, and biological changes to...

  12. Progress report: baseline monitoring of indicator species (butterflies) at tallgrass prairie restorations (United States)

    Allain, Larry; Vidrine, Malcolm


    This project provides baseline data of butterfly populations at two coastal prairie restoration sites in Louisiana, the Duralde Unit of Lacassine National Wildlife Refuge (hereafter, the Duralde site) and the Cajun Prairie Restoration Project in Eunice (hereafter, the Eunice site). In all, four distinct habitat types representing different planting methods were sampled. These data will be used to assess biodiversity and health of native grasslands and also provide a basis for adaptive management.

  13. Building Trust in Natural Resource Management Within Local Communities: A Case Study of the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie (United States)

    Davenport, Mae A.; Leahy, Jessica E.; Anderson, Dorothy H.; Jakes, Pamela J.


    Communities neighboring federally protected natural areas regularly weigh the costs and benefits of the administering agency’s programs and policies. While most agencies integrate public opinion into decision making, efforts to standardize and formalize public involvement have left many local communities feeling marginalized, spurring acrimony and opposition. A significant body of research has examined barriers to effective public participation as well as strategies for relationship building in planning processes; many of which point to trust as a key factor. Trust is especially tenuous in local communities. This paper explores perceptions of trust, expectations for management, as well as constraints to building trust. In-depth interviews were conducted with 21 community members and USDA Forest Service personnel at the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie in northeastern Illinois. The interviews revealed that trust is perceived as important to effective management. Distinct expectations for management outcomes and processes emerged, including the values, knowledge, and capacity demonstrated in management decisions and actions and opportunities provided for communication, collaboration, and cooperation within the agency-community relationship. The case study identified several constraints to building trust, including competing values, knowledge gaps, limited community engagement, and staff turnover.

  14. A comparison of native tallgrass prairie and plains bluestem forage systems for cow-calf production in the southern great plains. (United States)

    Coleman, S W; Phillips, W A; Volesky, J D; Buchanan, D


    The objective of this study was to compare an introduced warm-season perennial grass (plains bluestem, Bothriochloa ischaemum) to native tallgrass prairie for cow-calf production. Three systems were used, two based on tallgrass prairie with two different forms of protein supplementation and one based on plains bluestem as the primary forage. The systems were as follows: 1) native tallgrass prairie with pelleted oilseed meal as the winter protein supplement (native-control); 2) native tallgrass prairie with limited access to wheat pasture as the winter protein supplement (native-wheat); and 3) plains bluestem with limited access to wheat pasture as the protein supplement (bluestem-wheat). Oilseed meal protein supplements were fed twice weekly. Cows grazing wheat pasture were allowed 6 h of grazing twice weekly. Ninety-nine cows per year were used over the 3-yr study. Cows were sired by either Charolais, Gelbvieh, Angus, or Hereford bulls out of commercial Angus-Hereford dams. Calves were sired by Simmental bulls. Calving and weaning rate increased over time but did not differ among systems or breed types. System did not influence the size or body condition score of cows or the performance of calves, but changes in the weight and condition scores of cows were greater on either native system than on the bluestem-wheat system. Cows from Charolais and Gelbvieh bulls were taller (P < 0.05), and heavier (P < 0.05), and weaned heavier (P < 0.05) calves than cows from Angus or Hereford bulls. The weight of cows on the bluestem-wheat system tended to decrease over time, whereas cows grazing on the native systems tended to gain weight over time. The native-control system was the most profitable system based on cow production. If excess hay produced from the bluestem-wheat system was sold as a cash crop, then this system was the most profitable. In general, we conclude that limit-grazing wheat pasture is a viable alternative to oilseed meal as protein supplement for wintering

  15. Comparison of cellulosic ethanol yields from midwestern maize and reconstructed tallgrass prairie systems managed for bioenergy (United States)

    Maize- and prairie-based systems were investigated as cellulosic feedstocks by conducting a 9 ha side-by-side comparison on fertile soils in the Midwestern United States. Maize was grown continuously with adequate fertilization over years both with and without a winter rye cover crop, and the 31-spe...

  16. Exudate Chemical Profiles Derived from Lespedeza and Other Tallgrass Prairie Plant Species (United States)


    Chemical Profiles Derived from Lespedeza and Other Tall- grass Prairie Plant Species. ERDC TN-17-1. Vicksburg, MS: U.S. Army Engineer Re- search and...200-1-52. Washington, DC: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Headquarters, Civil Works. TN-17-1 May 2017 Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Exudate Chemical Profiles Derived from Lespedeza and Other

  17. Grasshopper fecundity responses to grazing and fire in a tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Laws, Angela N; Joern, Anthony


    Grasshopper abundance and diversity vary with management practices such as fire and grazing. Understanding how grasshopper life history traits such as fecundity respond to management practices is key to predicting grasshopper population dynamics in heterogeneous environments. Landscape-level experimental fire and bison grazing treatments at the Konza Prairie Biological Station (Manhattan, KS) provide an opportunity to examine how management affects grasshopper fecundity. Here we report on grasshopper fecundity for nine common species at Konza Prairie. From 2007 to 2009, adult female grasshoppers were collected every 3 wk from eight watersheds that varied in fire and grazing treatments. Fecundity was measured by examining female reproductive tracts, which contain a record of past and current reproductive activity. Body size was a poor predictor of fecundity for all species. Despite large differences in vegetation structure and composition with management regime (grazing and fire interval), we observed little effect of management on grasshopper fecundity. Habitat characteristics (grasshopper density, vegetation biomass, and vegetation quality; measured in 2008 and 2009) were better predictors of past fecundity than current fecundity, with species-specific responses. Fecundity increased throughout the summer, indicating that grasshoppers were able to acquire sufficient nutritional resources for egg production in the early fall when vegetation quality is generally low. Because fecundity did not vary across management treatments, population stage structure may be more important for determining population level reproduction than management regime at Konza Prairie.

  18. The influence of grazing on surface climatological variables of tallgrass prairie. Final Technical Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seastedt, T.R.; Dyer, M.I.; Turner, C.L.


    Mass and energy exchange between most grassland canopies and the atmosphere are mediated by grazing activities. Ambient temperatures can be increased or decreased by grazers. Data have been assembled from simulated grazing experiments on Konza Prairie Research Natural Area and observations on adjacent pastures grazed by cattle show significant changes in primary production, nutrient content, and bidirectional reflectance characteristics as a function of grazing intensity. The purpose of this research was to provide algorithms that would allow incorporation of grazing effects into models of energy budgets using remote sensing procedures. The approach involved: (1) linking empirical measurements of plant biomass and grazing intensities to remotely sensed canopy reflectance, and (2) using a higher resolution, mechanistic grazing model to derive plant ecophysiological parameters that influence reflectance and other surface climatological variables

  19. Prospective evidence for independent nitrogen and phosphorus limitation of grasshopper (Chorthippus curtipennis) growth in a tallgrass prairie. (United States)

    Rode, Madison; Lemoine, Nathan P; Smith, Melinda D


    Insect herbivores play a pivotal role in regulating plant production and community composition, and their role in terrestrial ecosystems is partly determined by their feeding behavior and performance among plants of differing nutritional quality. Historically, nitrogen (N) has been considered the primary limiting nutrient of herbivorous insects, but N is only one of many potential nutrients important to insect performance. Of these nutrients, phosphorus (P) is perhaps the most important because somatic growth depends upon P-rich ribosomal RNA. Yet relatively few studies have assessed the strength of P-limitation for terrestrial insects and even fewer have simultaneously manipulated both N and P to assess the relative strengths of N- and P-limitation. Here, we tested for potential N and P limitation, as well as N:P co-limitation, on Chorthippis curtipennis (Orthoptera, Acrididae), an abundant member of arthropod communities of central US prairies. Our results demonstrate weak evidence for both N and P limitation of C. curtipennis growth rates in laboratory feeding assays. Importantly, P-limitation was just as strong as N-limitation, but we found no evidence for NP co-limitation in our study. Furthermore, nutrient limitation was not apparent in field studies, suggesting that insect growth rates may be predominately controlled by other factors, including temperature and predation. Our results suggest that P should be jointly considered, along with N, as a primary determinant of herbivore feeding behavior under both current and future climate conditions.

  20. NPP Grassland: Konza Prairie, USA, 1984-1990, R1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains three ASCII files (.txt format). Two files contain above-ground biomass and productivity data for a humid temperate tall-grass prairie...

  1. The Microbiome Structure of Oklahoma Cropland and Prairie Soils and its Response to Seasonal Forcing and Management Practices (United States)

    Cornell, C. R.; Peterson, B.; Zhou, J.; Xiao, X.; Wawrik, B.


    Greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions from soils are primarily the consequence of microbial processes. Agricultural management of soils is known to affect the structure of microbial communities, and it is likely that dominant GHG emitting microbial activities are impacted via requisite practices. To gain better insight into the impact of seasonal forcing and management practices on the microbiome structure in Oklahoma agricultural soils, a seasonal study was conducted. Over a year period, samples were collected bi-weekly during wet months, and monthly during dry months from two grassland and two managed agricultural sites in El Reno, Oklahoma. Microbial community structure was determined in quadruplicate for each site and time point via 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Measures of soil water content, subsoil nitrate, ammonium, organic matter, total nitrogen, and biomass were also taken for each time point. Data analysis revealed several important trends, indicating greater microbial diversity in native grassland and distinct microbial community changes in response to management practices. The native grassland soils also contained greater microbial biomass than managed soils and both varied in response to rainfall events. Native grassland soils harbor more diverse microbial communities, with the diversity and biomass decreasing along a gradient of agricultural management intensity. These data indicate that microbial community structure in El Reno soils occurs along a continuum in which native grasslands and highly managed agricultural soils (tilling and manure application) form end members. Integration with measurements from eddy flux towers into modelling efforts using the DeNitrification-DeComposition (DNDC) model is currently being explored to improve predictions of GHG emissions from grassland soils.

  2. Molecular characterization, ecology, and epidemiology of a novel Tymovirus in Asclepias viridis from Oklahoma. (United States)

    Min, Byoung-Eun; Feldman, Tracy S; Ali, Akhtar; Wiley, Graham; Muthukumar, Vijay; Roe, Bruce A; Roossinck, Marilyn; Melcher, Ulrich; Palmer, Michael W; Nelson, Richard S


    Native virus-plant interactions require more understanding and their study will provide a basis from which to identify potential sources of emerging destructive viruses in crops. A novel tymovirus sequence was detected in Asclepias viridis (green milkweed), a perennial growing in a natural setting in the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve (TGPP) of Oklahoma. It was abundant within and frequent among A. viridis plants and, to varying extents, within other dicotyledonous and one grass (Panicum virgatum) species obtained from the TGPP. Extracts from A. viridis containing the sequence were infectious to a limited number of species. The virus genome was cloned and determined to be closely related to Kennedya yellow mosaic virus. The persistence of the virus within the Oklahoma A. viridis population was monitored for five successive years. Virus was present in a high percentage of plants within representative areas of the TGPP in all years and was spreading to additional plants. Virus was present in regions adjacent to the TGPP but not in plants sampled from central and south-central Oklahoma. Virus was present in the underground caudex of the plant during the winter, suggesting overwintering in this tissue. The RNA sequence encoding the virus coat protein varied considerably between individual plants (≈3%), likely due to drift rather than selection. An infectious clone was constructed and the virus was named Asclepias asymptomatic virus (AsAV) due to the absence of obvious symptoms on A. viridis.

  3. Dynamic Disturbance Processes Create Dynamic Lek Site Selection in a Prairie Grouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torre J Hovick

    Full Text Available It is well understood that landscape processes can affect habitat selection patterns, movements, and species persistence. These selection patterns may be altered or even eliminated as a result of changes in disturbance regimes and a concomitant management focus on uniform, moderate disturbance across landscapes. To assess how restored landscape heterogeneity influences habitat selection patterns, we examined 21 years (1991, 1993-2012 of Greater Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido lek location data in tallgrass prairie with restored fire and grazing processes. Our study took place at The Nature Conservancy's Tallgrass Prairie Preserve located at the southern extent of Flint Hills in northeastern Oklahoma. We specifically addressed stability of lek locations in the context of the fire-grazing interaction, and the environmental factors influencing lek locations. We found that lek locations were dynamic in a landscape with interacting fire and grazing. While previous conservation efforts have treated leks as stable with high site fidelity in static landscapes, a majority of lek locations in our study (i.e., 65% moved by nearly one kilometer on an annual basis in this dynamic setting. Lek sites were in elevated areas with low tree cover and low road density. Additionally, lek site selection was influenced by an interaction of fire and patch edge, indicating that in recently burned patches, leks were located near patch edges. These results suggest that dynamic and interactive processes such as fire and grazing that restore heterogeneity to grasslands do influence habitat selection patterns in prairie grouse, a phenomenon that is likely to apply throughout the Greater Prairie-Chicken's distribution when dynamic processes are restored. As conservation moves toward restoring dynamic historic disturbance patterns, it will be important that siting and planning of anthropogenic structures (e.g., wind energy, oil and gas and management plans not view lek

  4. Prairie Chicken (United States)

    Kansas Data Access and Support Center — An outline of the general range occupied by greayter and lesser prairie chickens. The range was delineated by expert opinion, then varified by local wildlife...

  5. Plant community structure regulates responses of prairie soil respiration to decadal experimental warming. (United States)

    Xu, Xia; Shi, Zheng; Li, Dejun; Zhou, Xuhui; Sherry, Rebecca A; Luo, Yiqi


    Soil respiration is recognized to be influenced by temperature, moisture, and ecosystem production. However, little is known about how plant community structure regulates responses of soil respiration to climate change. Here, we used a 13-year field warming experiment to explore the mechanisms underlying plant community regulation on feedbacks of soil respiration to climate change in a tallgrass prairie in Oklahoma, USA. Infrared heaters were used to elevate temperature about 2 °C since November 1999. Annual clipping was used to mimic hay harvest. Our results showed that experimental warming significantly increased soil respiration approximately from 10% in the first 7 years (2000-2006) to 30% in the next 6 years (2007-2012). The two-stage warming stimulation of soil respiration was closely related to warming-induced increases in ecosystem production over the years. Moreover, we found that across the 13 years, warming-induced increases in soil respiration were positively affected by the proportion of aboveground net primary production (ANPP) contributed by C3 forbs. Functional composition of the plant community regulated warming-induced increases in soil respiration through the quantity and quality of organic matter inputs to soil and the amount of photosynthetic carbon (C) allocated belowground. Clipping, the interaction of clipping with warming, and warming-induced changes in soil temperature and moisture all had little effect on soil respiration over the years (all P > 0.05). Our results suggest that climate warming may drive an increase in soil respiration through altering composition of plant communities in grassland ecosystems. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Microsatellite Markers in the Western Prairie Fringed Orchid, Platanthera praeclara (Orchidaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew A. Ross


    Full Text Available Premise of the study: Primers for 31 microsatellite-containing loci were developed for the threatened orchid Platanthera praeclara to enable characterization of the population genetics of this tallgrass prairie native. Methods and Results: Sixteen polymorphic microsatellite loci were identified from four populations. Six of these loci were not in linkage disequilibrium. The average number of alleles per locus per population ranged from 6.4 to 8.9. Conclusions: The results indicate that six of the polymorphic loci will be useful in future studies of population structure, gene flow, and genetic diversity.

  7. Avoidance behavior by prairie grouse: implications for development of wind energy. (United States)

    Pruett, Christin L; Patten, Michael A; Wolfe, Donald H


    New wind-energy facilities and their associated power transmission lines and roads are being constructed at a rapid pace in the Great Plains of North America. Nevertheless, little is known about the possible negative effects these anthropogenic features might have on prairie birds, one of the most threatened groups in North America. We examined radiotelemetry tracking locations of Lesser Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) and Greater Prairie-Chickens (T. cupido) in two locations in Oklahoma to determine whether these birds avoided or changed movement behavior near power lines and paved highways. We tracked 463 Lesser Prairie-Chickens (15,071 tracking locations) and 216 Greater Prairie-Chickens (5,750 locations) for 7 and 3 years, respectively. Individuals of both species avoided power lines by at least 100 m and Lesser Prairie-Chickens avoided one of the two highways by 100 m. Prairie-chickens crossed power lines less often than expected if birds moved randomly (p 0.05). In addition, home ranges of Lesser Prairie-Chickens overlapped the power line less often than would be expected by chance placement of home ranges; this result was supported by kernel-density estimation of home ranges. It is likely that new power lines (and other tall structures such as wind turbines) will lead to avoidance of previously suitable habitat and will serve as barriers to movement. These two factors will likely increase fragmentation in an already fragmented landscape if wind energy development continues in prairie habitats.

  8. A Habitat-Based Approach to Management of Tallgrass Prairies at the Tewaukon National Wildlife Refuge

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Schroeder, Richard


    .... and improving overall floristic quality. Selection of appropriate management strategies followed by monitoring and evaluation of habitat conditions will allow for adaptive management and appropriate modifications over time.

  9. Responses of predatory invertebrates to seeding density and plant species richness in experimental tallgrass prairie restorations (United States)

    Nemec, Kristine T.; Allen, Craig R.; Danielson, Stephen D.; Helzer, Christopher J.


    In recent decades, agricultural producers and non-governmental organizations have restored thousands of hectares of former cropland in the central United States with native grasses and forbs. However, the ability of these grassland restorations to attract predatory invertebrates has not been well documented, even though predators provide an important ecosystem service to agricultural producers by naturally regulating herbivores. This study assessed the effects of plant richness and seeding density on the richness and abundance of surface-dwelling (ants, ground beetles, and spiders) and aboveground (ladybird beetles) predatory invertebrates. In the spring of 2006, twenty-four 55 m × 55 m-plots were planted to six replicates in each of four treatments: high richness (97 species typically planted by The Nature Conservancy), at low and high seeding densities, and low richness (15 species representing a typical Natural Resources Conservation Service Conservation Reserve Program mix, CP25), at low and high seeding densities. Ants, ground beetles, and spiders were sampled using pitfall traps and ladybird beetles were sampled using sweep netting in 2007–2009. The abundance of ants, ground beetles, and spiders showed no response to seed mix richness or seeding density but there was a significant positive effect of richness on ladybird beetle abundance. Seeding density had a significant positive effect on ground beetle and spider species richness and Shannon–Weaver diversity. These results may be related to differences in the plant species composition and relative amount of grass basal cover among the treatments rather than richness.

  10. Changes in soil respiration across a chronosequence of tallgrass prairie reconstructions (United States)

    Close relationships among climatic factors and soil respiration (Rs) are commonly reported. However, variation in Rs across the landscape is compounded by site-specific differences that impede the development of spatially explicit models and whose causes are not clearly known. Among factors that inf...

  11. Effects of sexual dimorphism and landscape composition on the trophic behavior of Greater Prairie-Chicken.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Blanco-Fontao

    Full Text Available Partitioning of ecological niche is expected in lekking species that show marked sexual size dimorphism as a consequence of sex-specific ecological constraints. However, niche partitioning is uncertain in species with moderate sexual dimorphism. In addition, the ecological niche of a species may also be affected by landscape composition; particularly, agricultural fragmentation may greatly influence the trophic behavior of herbivores. We studied trophic niche variation in Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido, a grouse species that shows moderate sex-dimorphism. Greater Prairie-Chickens are native to tallgrass prairies of North America, although populations persist in less natural mosaics of cropland and native habitats. We used stable isotope analysis of carbon and nitrogen in blood, claws and feathers to assess seasonal differences in trophic niche breadth and individual specialization between male and female Greater Prairie-Chickens, and between birds living in continuous and fragmented landscapes. We found that females showed broader niches and higher individual specialization than males, especially in winter and autumn. However, differences between females and males were smaller in spring when birds converge at leks, suggesting that females and males may exhibit similar feeding behaviors during the lekking period. In addition, we found that birds living in native prairies showed greater annual trophic variability than conspecifics in agricultural mosaic landscapes. Native habitats may provide greater dietary diversity, resulting in greater diversity of feeding strategies.

  12. Increased rainfall variability and N addition accelerate litter decomposition in a restored prairie. (United States)

    Schuster, Michael J


    Anthropogenic nitrogen deposition and projected increases in rainfall variability (the frequency of drought and heavy rainfall events) are expected to strongly influence ecosystem processes such as litter decomposition. However, how these two global change factors interact to influence litter decomposition is largely unknown. I examined how increased rainfall variability and nitrogen addition affected mass and nitrogen loss of litter from two tallgrass prairie species, Schizachyrium scoparium and Solidago canadensis, and isolated the effects of each during plant growth and during litter decomposition. I increased rainfall variability by consolidating ambient rainfall into larger events and simulated chronic nitrogen deposition using a slow-release urea fertilizer. S. scoparium litter decay was more strongly regulated by the treatments applied during plant growth than by those applied during decomposition. During plant growth, increased rainfall variability resulted in S. scoparium litter that subsequently decomposed more slowly and immobilized more nitrogen than litter grown under ambient conditions, whereas nitrogen addition during plant growth accelerated subsequent mass loss of S. scoparium litter. In contrast, S. canadensis litter mass and N losses were enhanced under either N addition or increased rainfall variability both during plant growth and during decomposition. These results suggest that ongoing changes in rainfall variability and nitrogen availability are accelerating nutrient cycling in tallgrass prairies through their combined effects on litter quality, environmental conditions, and plant community composition.

  13. Oklahoma Tribes: A History (United States)

    Gover, Kevin


    Oklahoma is a microcosm of American Indian country. Water rights, tribal government impotence, jurisdiction, tribal membership, treaty rights, taxation, sovereignty, racism, and poor housing, education, and health are all vital issues facing the Indian tribes of Oklahoma. In order to understand the complexity of these issues, a review of the…

  14. Prairie Conservation in Canada: The Prairie Conservation Action Plan Experience (United States)

    Dean Nernberg; David Ingstrup


    In Canada, grassland conservation has been mobilized and directed through the development of Prairie Conservation Action Plans and Action Plan Committees in the three prairie provinces of Alberta (45 partner agencies and organizations), Saskatchewan (26 partners), and Manitoba (26 partners). In Alberta, 43 percent of the native prairie remains; in Saskatchewan and...

  15. An emerging crisis across northern prairie refuges: Prevalence of invasive plants and a plan for adaptive management (United States)

    Grant, T.A.; Flanders-Wanner, B.; Shaffer, T.L.; Murphy, R.K.; Knutsen, G.A.


    In the northern Great Plains, native prairies managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) can be pivotal in conservation of North America's biological diversity. From 2002 to 2006, we surveyed 7,338 belt transects to assess the general composition of mixed-grass and tallgrass prairie vegetation across five "complexes" (i.e., administrative groupings) of national wildlife refuges managed by the Service in North Dakota and South Dakota. Native grasses and forbs were common (mean frequency of occurrence 47%-54%) on two complexes but uncommon (4%-13%) on two others. Conversely, an introduced species of grass, smooth brome (Bromus inermis), accounted for 45% to 49% of vegetation on two complexes and another species, Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis) accounted for 27% to 36% of the vegetation on three of the complexes. Our data confirm prior suspicions of widespread invasion by introduced species of plants on Service-owned tracts of native prairie, changes that likely stem in part from a common management history of little or no disturbance (e.g., defoliation by grazing or fire). However, variability in the degree and type of invasion among prairie tracts suggests that knowledge of underlying causes (e.g., edaphic or climatic factors, management histories) could help managers more effectively restore prairies. We describe an adaptive management approach to acquire such knowledge while progressing with restoration. More specifically, we propose to use data from inventories of plant communities on Service-owned prairies to design and implement, as experiments, optimal restoration strategies. We will then monitor these experiments and use the results to refine future strategies. This comprehensive, process-oriented approach should yield reliable and robust recommendations for restoration and maintenance of native prairies in the northern Great Plains. 2009 by the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System.

  16. The effect of listing the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species on rural property values. (United States)

    Wietelman, Derek C; Melstrom, Richard T


    This paper estimates the effect of Endangered Species Act protections for the lesser prairie chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) on rural property values in Oklahoma. The political and legal controversy surrounding the listing of imperiled species raises questions about the development restrictions and opportunity costs the Endangered Species Act imposes on private landowners. Examining parcel-level sales data before and after the listing of the endemic lesser prairie chicken, we employ difference-in-differences (DD) regression to measure the welfare costs of these restrictions. While our basic DD regression provides evidence the listing was associated with a drop in property values, this finding does not hold up in models that control for latent county and year effects. The lack of a significant price effect is confirmed by several robustness checks. Thus, the local economic costs of listing the lesser prairie chicken under the Endangered Species Act appear to have been small. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Testing nickel tolerance of Sorghastrum nutans and its associated soil microbial community from serpentine and prairie soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doherty, Jennifer H.; Ji Baoming; Casper, Brenda B.


    Ecotypes of Sorghastrum nutans from a naturally metalliferous serpentine grassland and the tallgrass prairie were assessed for Ni tolerance and their utility in remediation of Ni-polluted soils. Plants were inoculated with serpentine arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) root inoculum or whole soil microbial communities, originating from either prairie or serpentine, to test their effects on plant performance in the presence of Ni. Serpentine plants had marginally higher Ni tolerance as indicated by higher survival. Ni reduced plant biomass and AM root colonization for both ecotypes. The serpentine AM fungi and whole microbial community treatments decreased plant biomass relative to uninoculated plants, while the prairie microbial community had no effect. Differences in how the soil communities affect plant performance were not reflected in patterns of root colonization by AM fungi. Thus, serpentine plants may be suited for reclamation of Ni-polluted soils, but AM fungi that occur on serpentine do not improve Ni tolerance. - Ni tolerance of Sorghastrum nutans differs slightly between serpentine and prairie populations and is negatively affected by serpentine soil and root inoculation

  18. Oklahoma forest industries, 1978 (United States)

    Victor A. Rudis; J. Greg Jones


    Oklahoma supplied 73 million cu ft of roundwood to forest industries in 1978, an increase of 13 percent since 1972, and 35 percent since 1975 (fig. 1). Pine made up four-fifths of the total. Sawlogs and pulpwood were the major products, accounting for 81 percent of the roundwood produced. Veneer logs accounted for 8 percent and the remainder was mostly posts.

  19. Establishment of prairies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lotero Cadavid, J.


    Are analyzed the establishment of prairies, such as the selection of the species, the factors of the environment, the impact in the establishment and forage production and its relation to the soil, the precipitation, the temperature, the light and the biotic factors. It is indicated that the selection of the species to settle down, is directly related with the climate and the soil and they group to be tolerant to drought, tolerant to flood soils, tolerant to humid soils, tolerant to soils very acids, moderately acids and saline. It is noticed that a bad establishment of the grasses can be due to the bad quality of the seed, a temperature and unfavorable humidity can cause low germination; equally seeds planted very deeply in heavy soils with excess of humidity. Considerations are made about the establishment and growth of the prairies in connection with the germination, cultures, sowing density and sowing on time, as well as for the soil preparation, the sowing in terrestrial mechanic and non mechanic and the use of cultivations forms of low cost and fertilization systems; equally the establishment of leguminous in mixture with gramineous, the renovation of prairies and the establishment of pastures

  20. Allied health education in Oklahoma. (United States)

    Holder, L; Nelson, S; Curcio, B


    This article is the first of several dealing with medical education and recruitment in Oklahoma and generated at the request of the OSMA-OUHSC Liaison Committee. The articles were sought out and submitted with the assistance of Edward N. Brandt, Jr., MD, PhD, executive dean at the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine.

  1. Experimental tree removal in tallgrass prairie: variable responses of flora and fauna along a woody cover gradient. (United States)

    Alford, Aaron L; Hellgren, Eric C; Limb, Ryan; Engle, David M


    Woody plant encroachment is a worldwide phenomenon in grassland and savanna systems whose consequence is often the development of an alternate woodland state. Theoretically, an alternate state may be associated with changes in system state variables (e.g., species composition) or abiotic parameter shifts (e.g., nutrient availability). When state-variable changes are cumulative, such as in woody plant encroachment, the probability of parameter shifts increases as system feedbacks intensify over time. Using a Before-After Control-Impact (BACI) design, we studied eight pairs of grassland sites undergoing various levels of eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana) encroachment to determine whether responses of flora and fauna to experimental redcedar removal differed according to the level of pretreatment redcedar cover. In the first year after removal, herbaceous plant species diversity and evenness, woody plant evenness, and invertebrate family richness increased linearly with pretreatment redcedar cover, whereas increases in small-mammal diversity and evenness were described by logarithmic trends. In contrast, increases in woody plant diversity and total biomass of terrestrial invertebrates were accentuated at levels of higher pretreatment cover. Tree removal also shifted small-mammal species composition toward a more grassland-associated assemblage. During the second year postremoval, increases in herbaceous plant diversity followed a polynomial trend, but increases in most other metrics did not vary along the pretreatment cover gradient. These changes were accompanied by extremely high growing-season precipitation, which may have homogenized floral and faunal responses to removal. Our results demonstrate that tree removal increases important community metrics among grassland flora and fauna within two years, with some responses to removal being strongly influenced by the stage of initial encroachment and modulated by climatic variability. Our results underscore the importance of decisive management for reversing the effects of woody plant encroachment in imperiled grassland ecosystems.

  2. Building trust in natural resource management within local communities: a case study of the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie (United States)

    Mae A. Davenport; Jessica E. Leahy; Dorothy H. Anderson; Pamela J. Jakes


    Communities neighboring federally protected natural areas regularly weigh the costs and benefits of the administering agency's programs and policies. While most agencies integrate public opinion into decision making, efforts to standardize and formalize public involvement have left many local communities feeling marginalized, spurring acrimony and opposition. A...

  3. Responses of prairie arthropod communities to fire and fertilizer: Balancing plant and arthropod conservation (United States)

    Hartley, M.K.; Rogers, W.E.; Siemann, E.; Grace, J.


    Fire is an important tool for limiting woody plant invasions into prairies, but using fire management to maintain grassland plant communities may inadvertently reduce arthropod diversity. To test this, we established twenty-four 100 m2 plots in a tallgrass prairie in Galveston County, Texas, in spring 2000. Plots were assigned a fire (no burn, one time burn [2000], two time burn [2000, 2001]) and fertilization treatment (none, NPK addition) in a full factorial design. Fertilization treatments allowed us to examine the effects of fire at a different level of productivity. We measured plant cover by species and sampled arthropods with sweep nets during the 2001 growing season. Path analysis indicated that fertilization reduced while annual fires increased arthropod diversity via increases and decreases in woody plant abundance, respectively. There was no direct effect of fire on arthropod diversity or abundance. Diptera and Homoptera exhibited particularly strong positive responses to fires. Lepidoptera had a negative response to nutrient enrichment. Overall, the negative effects of fire on the arthropod community were minor in contrast to the strong positive indirect effects of small-scale burning on arthropod diversity if conservation of particular taxa is not a priority. The same fire regime that minimized woody plant invasion also maximized arthropod diversity.

  4. Interactive effects between nest microclimate and nest vegetation structure confirm microclimate thresholds for Lesser Prairie-Chicken nest survival (United States)

    Grisham, Blake A.; Godar, Alixandra J.; Boal, Clint W.; Haukos, David A.


    The range of Lesser Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) spans 4 unique ecoregions along 2 distinct environmental gradients. The Sand Shinnery Oak Prairie ecoregion of the Southern High Plains of New Mexico and Texas is environmentally isolated, warmer, and more arid than the Short-Grass, Sand Sagebrush, and Mixed-Grass Prairie ecoregions in Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, and the northeast panhandle of Texas. Weather is known to influence Lesser Prairie-Chicken nest survival in the Sand Shinnery Oak Prairie ecoregion; regional variation may also influence nest microclimate and, ultimately, survival during incubation. To address this question, we placed data loggers adjacent to nests during incubation to quantify temperature and humidity distribution functions in 3 ecoregions. We developed a suite of a priori nest survival models that incorporated derived microclimate parameters and visual obstruction as covariates in Program MARK. We monitored 49 nests in Mixed-Grass, 22 nests in Sand Shinnery Oak, and 30 nests in Short-Grass ecoregions from 2010 to 2014. Our findings indicated that (1) the Sand Shinnery Oak Prairie ecoregion was hotter and drier during incubation than the Mixed- and Short-Grass ecoregions; (2) nest microclimate varied among years within ecoregions; (3) visual obstruction was positively associated with nest survival; but (4) daily nest survival probability decreased by 10% every half-hour when temperature was greater than 34°C and vapor pressure deficit was less than −23 mmHg during the day (about 0600–2100 hours). Our major finding confirmed microclimate thresholds for nest survival under natural conditions across the species' distribution, although Lesser Prairie-Chickens are more likely to experience microclimate conditions that result in nest failures in the Sand Shinnery Oak Prairie ecoregion. The species would benefit from identification of thermal landscapes and management actions that promote cooler, more humid nest microclimates.

  5. Digital atlas of Oklahoma (United States)

    Rea, A.H.; Becker, C.J.


    This compact disc contains 25 digital map data sets covering the State of Oklahoma that may be of interest to the general public, private industry, schools, and government agencies. Fourteen data sets are statewide. These data sets include: administrative boundaries; 104th U.S. Congressional district boundaries; county boundaries; latitudinal lines; longitudinal lines; geographic names; indexes of U.S. Geological Survey 1:100,000, and 1:250,000-scale topographic quadrangles; a shaded-relief image; Oklahoma State House of Representatives district boundaries; Oklahoma State Senate district boundaries; locations of U.S. Geological Survey stream gages; watershed boundaries and hydrologic cataloging unit numbers; and locations of weather stations. Eleven data sets are divided by county and are located in 77 county subdirectories. These data sets include: census block group boundaries with selected demographic data; city and major highways text; geographic names; land surface elevation contours; elevation points; an index of U.S. Geological Survey 1:24,000-scale topographic quadrangles; roads, streets and address ranges; highway text; school district boundaries; streams, river and lakes; and the public land survey system. All data sets are provided in a readily accessible format. Most data sets are provided in Digital Line Graph (DLG) format. The attributes for many of the DLG files are stored in related dBASE(R)-format files and may be joined to the data set polygon attribute or arc attribute tables using dBASE(R)-compatible software. (Any use of trade names in this publication is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.) Point attribute tables are provided in dBASE(R) format only, and include the X and Y map coordinates of each point. Annotation (text plotted in map coordinates) are provided in AutoCAD Drawing Exchange format (DXF) files. The shaded-relief image is provided in TIFF format. All data sets except the shaded

  6. Oklahoma seismic network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Luza, K.V.; Lawson, J.E. Jr.; Univ. of Oklahoma, Norman, OK


    The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission has established rigorous guidelines that must be adhered to before a permit to construct a nuclear-power plant is granted to an applicant. Local as well as regional seismicity and structural relationships play an integral role in the final design criteria for nuclear power plants. The existing historical record of seismicity is inadequate in a number of areas of the Midcontinent region because of the lack of instrumentation and (or) the sensitivity of the instruments deployed to monitor earthquake events. The Nemaha Uplift/Midcontinent Geophysical Anomaly is one of five principal areas east of the Rocky Mountain front that has a moderately high seismic-risk classification. The Nemaha uplift, which is common to the states of Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska, is approximately 415 miles long and 12-14 miles wide. The Midcontinent Geophysical Anomaly extends southward from Minnesota across Iowa and the southeastern corner of Nebraska and probably terminates in central Kansas. A number of moderate-sized earthquakes--magnitude 5 or greater--have occurred along or west of the Nemaha uplift. The Oklahoma Geological Survey, in cooperation with the geological surveys of Kansas, Nebraska, and Iowa, conducted a 5-year investigation of the seismicity and tectonic relationships of the Nemaha uplift and associated geologic features in the Midcontinent. This investigation was intended to provide data to be used to design nuclear-power plants. However, the information is also being used to design better large-scale structures, such as dams and high-use buildings, and to provide the necessary data to evaluate earthquake-insurance rates in the Midcontinent

  7. 78 FR 78318 - Television Broadcasting Services; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (United States)


    ...: Proposed rule. SUMMARY: The Commission has before it a petition for rulemaking filed by Family Broadcasting Group, Inc. (``Family Broadcasting''), the licensee of station KSBI(TV), channel 51, Oklahoma City... instituted a freeze on the acceptance of full power television rulemaking petitions requesting channel...

  8. Simpson-Arbuckle contact revisited in Northwest Oklahoma County, Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allison, M.D.; Allen, R.W. [Kabodi Inc., Ardmore, OK (United States)


    The Joins Formation, the lowermost formation of the Simpson Group, is traditionally the least studied or understood of the Simpson formations. The Joins, not known to produce hydrocarbons in central Oklahoma, is frequently overlooked by those more interested in the productive Simpson formations above and the Arbuckle carbonates below. In a study of the lower Simpson to upper Arbuckle interval in northwestern Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, the Joins Formation was found to be present. The central Oklahoma section consists of interbedded gray, olive gray and green splintery moderately waxy shale, cream to light gray homogeneous microcrystallin dolomite, and microcrystalline to fine crystalline fossiliferous slightly glauconitic well cemented sandstones are also noted. The entire Joins Formation is moderately to very fossiliferous; primarily consisting of crinoids, ostracods, brachiopods, and trilobites. The ostracod fauna closely resembles and correlates with the Arbuckle Mountain section, which has been extensively studied over the years by such authors as Taff, Ulrich and Harris. Beneath the Joins in this area is a normal section of Arbuckle dolomites. Due to the absence of a basal sand in the Joins the separation of the Joins and Arbuckle, utilizing electric logs only, is frequently tenuous. In comparison with the Arbuckle, the Joins tends to have higher gamma ray and S.P. values. Other tools, such as resistivity, bulk density and photoelectric (PE), are frequently inconclusive. For geologists studying the Simpson-Arbuckle contact in central Oklahoma, the presence or absence of the Joins Formation is best determined through conventional lithologic and palenontologic sample identification techniques. Once this has been done, correlation of electric logs with this type log is possible for the local area.

  9. Fighting for Scholarships in Oklahoma. (United States)

    Roach, Ronald


    Fearing a federal court in Oklahoma might end a state-financed merit-scholarship program targeted by a discrimination lawsuit, black legislators passed a bill making the program race and gender neutral. State regents are criticized for failing to develop effective policy to remedy past discrimination. (MSE)

  10. Residential Energy Efficiency Potential: Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wilson, Eric J [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)


    Energy used by Oklahoma single-family homes that can be saved through cost-effective improvements. Prepared by Eric Wilson and Noel Merket, NREL, and Erin Boyd, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis.

  11. Native Prairie Adaptive Management: a multi region adaptive approach to invasive plant management on Fish and Wildlife Service owned native prairies (United States)

    Gannon, Jill J.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Moore, Clinton T.


    : increase the composition of native grasses and forbs on native sod while minimizing cost. Cooperators agreed that decision guidance should be provided annually and should account for local, real-time vegetation conditions observed on the ground. Over the course of development, two prototypes of the decision framework were considered. The final framework recognized four alternative actions that managers could take in any given year: (1) Graze—targeted use of grazing ungulates to achieve defoliation, (2) Burn—application of prescribed fire as the single form of defoliation, (3) Burn/Graze—a combination treatment, and (4) Rest—no action. The study area included northern mixed-grass and tallgrass prairie. Native vegetation in mixed–grass prairie has a strong cool-season component and thus the dominant native species have a phenology similar to that of smooth brome and Kentucky bluegrass, making management of those species challenging. In contrast, tallgrass prairie has a strong warm-season native component, leading to an existence of cool-season windows, periods of time in the fall and spring when cool‐season invasive grass species are actively growing and vulnerable to damage via select management actions, but warm‐season grass species are not active and are thus less susceptible to damage via the same actions. This dichotomy between prairie types necessitated the development of separate but parallel decision support systems for mixed-grass and tallgrass biomes. Management units are parcels of native prairie that receive a single management treatment at any one time over their entire extent. At any particular time, the vegetation state of each management unit is characterized by the amount of cover of native grasses and forbs and the type of invasive grass that is dominant. In addition, each unit has a defoliation state which reflects the number of years since the last defoliation event and an index to how intensively the unit was managed during the previous 7

  12. 75 FR 68398 - Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad, LLC-Acquisition and Operation Exemption-Texas, Oklahoma... (United States)


    ... & Eastern Railroad, LLC--Acquisition and Operation Exemption--Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad Company Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad, LLC (TOE), a noncarrier, has filed a verified notice of exemption under 49 CFR 1150.31 to acquire from Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad Company and to operate...

  13. Song and Male Quality in Prairie Warblers (United States)

    Bruce E. Byers; Michael E. Akresh; David I. King; W. Koenig


    To determine if the songs of male prairie warblers could potentially reveal to female listeners information about the quality of singers, we compared various aspects of prairie warbler song structure and performance to attributes that might reflect a male singer's potential to enhance the fitness of his mate. We found that all the tested male attributes—arrival...

  14. Black-tailed prairie dog status and future conservation planning (United States)

    Daniel W. Mulhern; Craig J. Knowles


    The black-tailed prairie dog is one of five prairie dog species estimated to have once occupied up to 100 million ha or more in North America. The area occupied by black-tailed prairie dogs has declined to approximately 2% of its former range. Conversion of habitat to other land uses and widespread prairie dog eradication efforts combined with sylvatic plague,

  15. The prairie dog as a keystone species (United States)

    Kotliar, Natasha B.; Miller, Brian J.; Reading, Richard P.; Clark, Timothy W.; Hoogland, John L.


    The prairie dog has a pronounced impact on its grassland ecosystem (King 1955; Uresk and Bjugstad 1983; Miller et al. 1994; Society for Conservation Biology 1994; Wuerthner 1997; Johnsgard 2005). They maintain short vegetation by their grazing and by selective removal of tall plants and shrubs; provide shelter, foraging grounds, and nesting habitat for a diverse array of animals; serve as prey for many predators; and alter soil chemistry.Do these impacts mean that the prairie dog is a keystone species? To investigate, we first scrutinize the definition for a keystone species. We then document both vertebrates and invertebrates that associate with prairie dogs and their colony-sites. We examine ecosystem processes at colony-sites, and then assess whether the prairie dog is a legitimate keystone species. Finally, we explore the implications of keystone status for the conservation of prairie dogs.

  16. Prairie Change Analysis 1991-2008 (United States)

    Minnesota Department of Natural Resources — This dataset displays the results of a prairie/savanna change analysis study completed in May 2010. The area reviewed consists of 1,521 sites identified by Minnesota...

  17. Regional Variation in mtDNA of the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (United States)

    Hagen, Christian A.; Pitman, James C.; Sandercock, Brett K.; Wolfe, Don H.; Robel, Robel J.; Applegate, Roger D.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.


    Cumulative loss of habitat and long-term decline in the populations of the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) have led to concerns for the species' viability throughout its range in the southern Great Plains. For more efficient conservation past and present distributions of genetic variation need to be understood. We examined the distribution of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation in the Lesser Prairie-Chicken across Kansas, Colorado, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. Throughout the range we found little genetic differentiation except for the population in New Mexico, which was significantly different from most other publications. We did, however, find significant isolation by distance at the rangewide scale (r=0.698). We found no relationship between haplotype phylogeny and geography, and our analyses provide evidence for a post-glacial population expansion within the species that is consistent with the idea that speciation within Tympanuchus is recent. Conservation actions that increase the likelihood of genetically viable populations in the future should be evaluated for implementation.

  18. Nutrient addition shifts plant community composition towards earlier flowering species in some prairie ecoregions in the U.S. Central Plains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lori Biederman

    Full Text Available The distribution of flowering across the growing season is governed by each species' evolutionary history and climatic variability. However, global change factors, such as eutrophication and invasion, can alter plant community composition and thus change the distribution of flowering across the growing season. We examined three ecoregions (tall-, mixed, and short-grass prairie across the U.S. Central Plains to determine how nutrient (nitrogen (N, phosphorus, and potassium (+micronutrient addition alters the temporal patterns of plant flowering traits. We calculated total community flowering potential (FP by distributing peak-season plant cover values across the growing season, allocating each species' cover to only those months in which it typically flowers. We also generated separate FP profiles for exotic and native species and functional group. We compared the ability of the added nutrients to shift the distribution of these FP profiles (total and sub-groups across the growing season. In all ecoregions, N increased the relative cover of both exotic species and C3 graminoids that flower in May through August. The cover of C4 graminoids decreased with added N, but the response varied by ecoregion and month. However, these functional changes only aggregated to shift the entire community's FP profile in the tall-grass prairie, where the relative cover of plants expected to flower in May and June increased and those that flower in September and October decreased with added N. The relatively low native cover in May and June may leave this ecoregion vulnerable to disturbance-induced invasion by exotic species that occupy this temporal niche. There was no change in the FP profile of the mixed and short-grass prairies with N addition as increased abundance of exotic species and C3 graminoids replaced other species that flower at the same time. In these communities a disturbance other than nutrient addition may be required to disrupt phenological

  19. Characteristics of lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) long-distance movements across their distribution (United States)

    Earl, Julia E.; Fuhlendorf, Samuel D.; Haukos, David A.; Tanner, Ashley M.; Elmore, Dwayne; Carleton, Scott A.


    Long-distance movements are important adaptive behaviors that contribute to population, community, and ecosystem connectivity. However, researchers have a poor understanding of the characteristics of long-distance movements for most species. Here, we examined long-distance movements for the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus), a species of conservation concern. We addressed the following questions: (1) At what distances could populations be connected? (2) What are the characteristics and probability of dispersal movements? (3) Do lesser prairie-chickens display exploratory and round-trip movements? (4) Do the characteristics of long-distance movements vary by site? Movements were examined from populations using satellite GPS transmitters across the entire distribution of the species in New Mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado. Dispersal movements were recorded up to 71 km net displacement, much farther than hitherto recorded. These distances suggest that there may be greater potential connectivity among populations than previously thought. Dispersal movements were displayed primarily by females and had a northerly directional bias. Dispersal probabilities ranged from 0.08 to 0.43 movements per year for both sexes combined, although these movements averaged only 16 km net displacement. Lesser prairie-chickens displayed both exploratory foray loops and round-trip movements. Half of round-trip movements appeared seasonal, suggesting a partial migration in some populations. None of the long-distance movements varied by study site. Data presented here will be important in parameterizing models assessing population viability and informing conservation planning, although further work is needed to identify landscape features that may reduce connectivity among populations.

  20. Pastures to Prairies to Pools: An Update on Natural Resource Damages Settlement Projects at the Fernald Preserve - 13198

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Powell, Jane [Fernald Preserve Site Manager, DOE Office of Legacy Management, Harrison, Ohio (United States); Schneider, Tom [Fernald Project Manager, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, Dayton, Ohio (United States); Hertel, Bill [Project Manager, S.M. Stoller Corporation, Harrison, Ohio (United States); Homer, John [Environmental Scientist, S.M. Stoller Corporation, Harrison, Ohio (United States)


    The DOE Office of Legacy Management oversees implementation and monitoring of two ecological restoration projects at the Fernald Preserve, Fernald, Ohio, that are funded through a CERCLA natural resource damage settlement. Planning and implementation of on-property ecological restoration projects is one component of compensation for natural resource injury. The Paddys Run Tributary Project involves creation of vernal pool wetland habitat with adjacent forest restoration. The Triangle Area Project is a mesic tall-grass prairie establishment, similar to other efforts at the Fernald Preserve. The goal of the Fernald Natural Resource Trustees is to establish habitat for Ambystomatid salamander species, as well as grassland birds. Field implementation of these projects was completed in May 2012. Herbaceous cover and woody vegetation survival was determined in August and September 2012. Results show successful establishment of native vegetation. Additional monitoring will be needed to determine whether project goals have been met. As with the rest of the Fernald Preserve, ecological restoration has helped turn a DOE liability into a community asset. (authors)

  1. Pastures to Prairies to Pools: An Update on Natural Resource Damages Settlement Projects at the Fernald Preserve - 13198

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Powell, Jane; Schneider, Tom; Hertel, Bill; Homer, John


    The DOE Office of Legacy Management oversees implementation and monitoring of two ecological restoration projects at the Fernald Preserve, Fernald, Ohio, that are funded through a CERCLA natural resource damage settlement. Planning and implementation of on-property ecological restoration projects is one component of compensation for natural resource injury. The Paddys Run Tributary Project involves creation of vernal pool wetland habitat with adjacent forest restoration. The Triangle Area Project is a mesic tall-grass prairie establishment, similar to other efforts at the Fernald Preserve. The goal of the Fernald Natural Resource Trustees is to establish habitat for Ambystomatid salamander species, as well as grassland birds. Field implementation of these projects was completed in May 2012. Herbaceous cover and woody vegetation survival was determined in August and September 2012. Results show successful establishment of native vegetation. Additional monitoring will be needed to determine whether project goals have been met. As with the rest of the Fernald Preserve, ecological restoration has helped turn a DOE liability into a community asset. (authors)

  2. Soil change induced by prairie dogs across three ecological sites (United States)

    Prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) can influence vegetation dynamics and landscape hydrology by altering soil properties, yet few studies have evaluated soil responses to prairie dog activities across a range of soil types. This study was conducted to quantify prairie dog effects on soil properties within...

  3. Carbon storage potential increases with increasing ratio of C4 to C3 grass cover and soil productivity in restored tallgrass prairies. (United States)

    Spiesman, Brian J; Kummel, Herika; Jackson, Randall D


    Long-term soil carbon (C) storage is essential for reducing CO 2 in the atmosphere. Converting unproductive and environmentally sensitive agricultural lands to grasslands for bioenergy production may enhance C storage. However, a better understanding of the interacting effects of grass functional composition (i.e., relative abundance of C 4 and C 3 grass cover) and soil productivity on C storage will help guide sustainable grassland management. Our objective was to examine the relationship between grass functional composition and potential C storage and how it varies with potential soil productivity. We estimated C inputs from above- and belowground net primary productivity (ANPP and BNPP), and heterotrophic respiration (R H ) to calculate net ecosystem production (NEP), a measure of potential soil C storage, in grassland plots of relatively high- and low-productivity soils spanning a gradient in the ratio of C 4 to C 3 grass cover (C 4 :C 3 ). NEP increased with increasing C 4 :C 3 , but only in potentially productive soils. The positive relationship likely stemmed from increased ANPP, rather than BNPP, which was possibly related to efficient resource-use and physiological/anatomical advantages of C 4 plants. R H was negatively correlated with C 4 :C 3 , possibly because of changes in microclimate or plant-microbe interactions. It is possible that in potentially productive soils, C storage can be enhanced by favoring C 4 over C 3 grasses through increased ANPP and BNPP and reduced R H . Results also suggest that potential C storage gains from C 4 productivity would not be undermined by a corresponding increase in R H .

  4. Birds and butterflies respond to soil-induced habitat heterogeneity in experimental plantings of tallgrass prairie species managed as agroenergy feedstocks in Iowa, USA (United States)

    The positive association between habitat heterogeneity and species diversity has been well-documented for many taxa at various spatial and temporal scales, and the maintenance of habitat heterogeneity in agricultural landscapes has been promoted as a key strategy in efforts to conserve biodiversity....

  5. Flora and fauna associated with prairie dog colonies and adjacent ungrazed mixed-grass prairie in western South Dakota (United States)

    William Agnew; Daniel W. Uresk; Richard M. Hansen


    Vegetation, small rodents, and birds were sampled during the growing seasons of 2 years on prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies and adjacent mixed-grass prairie in western South Dakota. Prairie dog grazing decreased mulch cover, maximum height of vegetation, plant species richness, and tended to decrease live plant canopy cover compared to...

  6. Arthropod consumption by small mammals on prairie dog colonies and adjacent ungrazed mixed grass prairie in western South Dakota (United States)

    W. Agnew; Daniel W. Uresk; R. M. Hansen


    The percentage of arthropods and plants in the diets of seven small rodents captured on prairie dog colonies and adjacent mixed grasslands were estimated by microhistological techniques. Arthropod composition over the two year study averaged 51% and 37% on prairie dog colonies and mixed grasslands, respectively. Composition of arthropods on prairie dog colonies was...

  7. State of the prairies of marine grasses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barrios, Lina M; Gomez, Diana I


    At the end of the year 2000, INVEMAR gave beginning to the project Distribution, it structures and classification of the prairies of marine flowering in the Colombian Caribbean, guided to characterize ecological and environmentally the ecosystems in this Colombian sector, particularly as for its distribution, extension, structures, associate biota and intervention degree. The above-mentioned like answer to the lack of information that was presented to the date in almost all the levels (line bases and ecology) for this ecosystem, required to implement monitoring programs and to adopt conservation strategies for the same one. The information that is presented is based primarily on the results obtained during the execution of the project in mention. An diagnostic is done, a characterization of the prairies, epiphytes covering, associate fauna and it structures of the prairies

  8. Oklahoma Study of Educator Supply and Demand: Trends and Projections (United States)

    Berg-Jacobson, Alex; Levin, Jesse


    In June 2014, the Oklahoma State Regents of Higher Education (OSRHE) commissioned American Institutes for Research (AIR) to conduct a study to better understand both historical and future predicted trends of educator supply and demand across Oklahoma. OSRHE commissioned the study in partnership with the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation…

  9. Oklahoma City's Emerging Hispanic Community: New Partnerships, New Successes (United States)

    Kinders, Mark A.; Pope, Myron L.


    The University of Central Oklahoma's new strategic plan sought to increase its connection to the emerging Hispanic community in Oklahoma City. Simultaneously, the Greater Oklahoma City Hispanic Chamber of Commerce was seeking a higher education partner. This case study describes resulting new programs for Hispanic students and businesses. The…

  10. Invasive plants affect prairie soil biology (United States)

    Non-native or exotic plants often cause ecological and environmental damage in ecosystems where they invade and become established. These invasive plants may be the most serious threat to plant diversity in prairies, especially those in scattered remnants, which may be particularly vulnerable to rap...

  11. Timber resource of Minnesota's Prairie unit, 1977. (United States)

    Jerold T. Hahn; W. Brad Smith


    The fourth inventory of Minnesota's Prairie Unit shows that although commercial forest area decreased 31.7% between 1962 and 1977, growing-stock volume increased 22%. This report gives statistical highlights and contains detailed tables of forest area as well as timber volume, growth, mortality, ownership, and use.

  12. Timber resource of Missouri's Prairie, 1972. (United States)

    Jerold T. Hahn; Alexander Vasilevsky


    The third timber inventory of Missouri's Prairie Forest Survey Unit shows substantial declines in both growing-stock and sawtimber volumes between 1959 and 1972. Commercial forest area declined by one-fifth. Presents highlights and statistics on forest area and timber volume, growth, mortality, ownership, and use in 1972.

  13. Last Glacial Maximum Development of Parna Dunes in Panhandle Oklahoma, USA (United States)

    Johnson, W. C.; Halfen, A. F.; McGowen, S.; Carter, B.; Fine, S.; Bement, L. C.; Simms, A. R.


    Though dunefields are a ubiquitous feature of the North American Great Plains, those studied to date have consisted primarily of sand grains. In Beaver County of the Oklahoma panhandle, however, upland dune forms consist of sand-sized aggregates of silt and clay. These aptly named parna dunes occur in two swarms, range in height from 10-15 m, and have asymmetrical dome morphologies with approximate north-south dune orientations. Despite their morphological similarities to sand dunes of the region, their origin and evolution is unknown. Documenting parna dune formation in the Oklahoma panhandle will help improve our understanding of prehistoric landscape instability and climate change, particularly in the central Great Plains where such records are limited. Panhandle parna dunes are typified by Blue Mound, our best documented parna dune thus far. Coring has documented a basal paleosol buried at a depth equivalent to the surrounding landscape—14C ages from this soil indicate its formation about 25-21 ka. The paleosol is a hydric Mollisol with a pronounced C3 isotopic signature reflecting hydric plant communities, rather than the regionally dominated C4 prairie vegetation. Hydric soils are associated with many of the playas on the surrounding landscape today, which suggests that they may have been more prevalent during the LGM. The overlying 8-10 m of parna is low in organic C and high in calcite, with indications of up to ten major episodes of sediment flux, which are documented with magnetic, isotope, soil-stratigraphic, particle-size, and color data. Near-surface luminescence (OSL) ages from Blue Mound are similar to the 14C ages from the basal paleosol, indicating rapid dune construction, with little or no Holocene accumulation of sediment. Marine isotope stage (MIS) 3 loess records indicate that upland areas of the region were relatively stable with attendant widespread pedogenesis prior to development of the parna dunes. At the onset of the LGM, however, the

  14. Neighborhood Historic Preservation Status and Housing Values in Oklahoma County, Oklahoma


    Rickman, Dan S.


    Using county tax assessor data, this paper estimates the property value impacts of his-toric designation of neighborhoods for Oklahoma County, Oklahoma. Methodological contri-butions of the study include allowing for spatial and temporal variation of hedonic prices and historic district property values along with the use of finely-delineated spatial fixed effects. Neighborhood historic designation is found to be associated with significant relative apprecia-tion of housing values in most dist...

  15. Soil biota in post-mining sites along a climatic gradient in the USA: Simple communities in shortgrass prairie recover faster than complex communities in tallgrass prairie and forest

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Frouz, Jan; Jílková, V.; Cajthaml, T.; Pižl, Václav; Tajovský, Karel; Háněl, Ladislav; Burešová, A.; Šimáčková, H.; Kolaříková, K.; Franklin, J.; Nawrot, J.; Groninger, J.W.; Stahl, P.D.


    Roč. 67, December (2013), s. 212-225 ISSN 0038-0717 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ME08019 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : restoration * succession * ergosterol * macrofauna * microbial biomass * PLFA Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.410, year: 2013




  17. Water Use in Oklahoma 1950-2005 (United States)

    Tortorelli, Robert L.


    Comprehensive planning for water resources development and use in Oklahoma requires a historical perspective on water resources. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, summarized the 1950-2005 water-use information for Oklahoma. This report presents 1950-2005 estimates of freshwater withdrawal for water use in Oklahoma by source and category in 5-year intervals. Withdrawal source was either surface water or groundwater. Withdrawal categories include: public supply, irrigation, livestock and aquaculture, thermoelectric-power generation (cooling water), domestic and commercial, and industrial and mining. Withdrawal data were aggregated and tabulated by county, major river basin, and principal aquifer. The purpose of this report is to summarize water-use data in Oklahoma through: (1) presentation of detailed information on freshwater withdrawals by source, county, major river basin, and principal aquifer for 2005; (2) comparison of water use by source, category, major river basin, and principal aquifer at 5-year intervals from 1990-2005; and (3) comparison of water use on a statewide basis by source and category at 5-year intervals from 1950-2005. Total withdrawals from surface-water and groundwater sources during 2005 were 1,559 million gallons per day-989 million gallons a day or 63 percent from surface-water sources and 570 million gallons per day or 37 percent from groundwater sources. The three largest water use categories were: public supply, 646 million gallons per day or 41 percent of total withdrawals; irrigation, 495 million gallons per day or 32 percent of total withdrawals; and livestock and aquaculture, 181 million gallons per day or 12 percent of total withdrawals. All other categories were 237 million gallons per day or 15 percent of total withdrawals. The influence of public supply on the total withdrawals can be seen in the eastern two-thirds of Oklahoma; whereas, the influence of irrigation on total

  18. A Prairie Dog Abatement Program in San Juan County, Utah


    Messmer, Terry A.; Keyes, Jim; McDonald, Roy


    Four species of prairie dogs are native to the plains and plateaus of the western United States. The most abundant and widely distributed of these is the blacktailed prairie dog, (Cynomys ludovicianus). This species has been a frequent topic of discussion at previous Great Plains Wildlife Damage Control workshops. Black-tailed prairie dog ecology and management was the topic of a panel discussion held at the Fifth Great Plains Wildlife Damage Control Workshop, in Lincoln, Nebraska (Timm and J...

  19. Prairies Water Management on Corps Lands (United States)


    infiltration, autogenic mechanisms can lead to the recovery of essential soil processes. The Role of Organic Matter in Soil Formation. In a in EP-1130-2-540 (USACE 2005), and does not have a fire management training program in place (USACE 2008). Some Corps resource managers...are trained and partner with other entities to conduct prescribed burns on Corps grasslands. However, prescribed burning as a management strategy is

  20. 76 FR 17584 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Oklahoma; Regional Haze State Implementation... (United States)


    ..., Springlake Campus, Business Conference Center, Meeting Rooms H and I, 1900 Springlake Drive, Oklahoma City... Campus, Business Conference Center, Meeting Rooms H and I, 1900 Springlake Drive, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma... City Zoo and Kirkpatrick Center. Parking for the [[Page 17585

  1. Chicago's Columbus Park: The Prairie Idealized. Teaching with Historic Places. (United States)

    Bachrach, Julia Sniderman; Nathan, Jo Ann

    Twenty-four year old Jens Jensen came to the United States, settled in Chicago (Illinois), and promptly fell in love with the Midwest's prairie landscape. Although some thought that prairie was boring, monotonous, and ordinary, Jensen saw great beauty in the tree-filled groves, long winding rivers, natural rock formations and waterfalls, and the…

  2. Use of ecological sites in managing wildlife and livestock: An example with prairie dogs (United States)

    Prairie dogs are a native rodent found in the mixed grass prairie of the northern Great Plains. Prairie dogs can have an adverse impact on the amount of forages available for grazing livestock. In the Native American community, prairie dogs are often valued as a cultural resource and as an importan...

  3. 78 FR 17224 - Environmental Impact Statement; Proposed South Puget Sound Prairie Habitat Conservation Plan... (United States)


    ... sizable portion of South Puget Sound Prairie habitat is located in the urban-rural interface and in the...-FF01E00000] Environmental Impact Statement; Proposed South Puget Sound Prairie Habitat Conservation Plan... permit application would be associated the South Puget Sound Prairie Habitat Conservation Plan (Prairie...

  4. Restoration and winter avian use of isolated prairies in eastern Texas (United States)

    D. Craig Rudolph; Dave E. Plair; Dan Jones; J. Howard Williamson; Clifford E. Shackelford; Richard R. Schaefer; Joshua B. Pierce


    Numerous isolated prairies exist, or existed, on the West Gulf Coastal Plain east of the main distribution of the prairie ecosystem. Changing land-use patterns and suppression of wildfire have destroyed almost all of these small prairie occurrences. Intensified restoration and management of degraded prairie habitat on the Sam Houston National Forest in southeastern...

  5. Prairie Monitoring Protocol Development: North Coast and Cascades Network (United States)

    McCoy, Allen; Dalby, Craig


    The purpose of the project was to conduct research that will guide development of a standard approach to monitoring several components of prairies within the North Coast and Cascades Network (NCCN) parks. Prairies are an important element of the natural environment at many parks, including San Juan Island National Historical Park (NHP) and Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve (NHR). Forests have been encroaching on these prairies for many years, and so monitoring of the prairies is an important resource issue. This project specifically focused on San Juan Island NHP. Prairies at Ebey's Landing NHR will be monitored in the future, but that park was not mapped as part of this prototype project. In the interest of efficiency, the Network decided to investigate two main issues before launching a full protocol development effort: (1) the imagery requirements for monitoring prairie components, and (2) the effectiveness of software to assist in extracting features from the imagery. Several components of prairie monitoring were initially identified as being easily tracked using aerial imagery. These components included prairie/forest edge, broad prairie composition (for example, shrubs, scattered trees), and internal exclusions (for example, shrubs, bare ground). In addition, we believed that it might be possible to distinguish different grasses in the prairies if the imagery were of high enough resolution. Although the areas in question at San Juan Island NHP are small enough that mapping on the ground with GPS (Global Positioning System) would be feasible, other applications could benefit from aerial image acquisition on a regular, recurring basis and thereby make the investment in aerial imagery worthwhile. The additional expense of orthorectifying the imagery also was determined to be cost-effective.

  6. Oxytocin reduces alcohol consumption in prairie voles. (United States)

    Stevenson, J R; Wenner, S M; Freestone, D M; Romaine, C C; Parian, M C; Christian, S M; Bohidar, A E; Ndem, J R; Vogel, I R; O'Kane, C M


    Alcohol use disorder (AUD) negatively affects millions of people every year in the United States, and effective treatments for AUD are still needed. The neuropeptide oxytocin has shown promise for reducing alcohol drinking in mice and rats. Because oxytocin also plays a key role in complex prosocial behaviors like bonding and attachment, we tested the effect of oxytocin on alcohol drinking in prairie voles, a species that both consumes high amounts of alcohol and forms oxytocin dependent social bonds in a manner similar to humans. Oxytocin treatment (1.0, 3.0, and 10.0mg/kg, i.p.) reduced alcohol consumption in male and female prairie voles in animals that had access to 15% ethanol vs water every other day for 12 alcohol drinking sessions. In animals with continuous access to 15% alcohol and water, oxytocin (3.0mg/kg) reduced alcohol consumption only in the first hour of access after treatment, with no significant effects on consumption over the 24-hr period. In an open field locomotor test, oxytocin (1.0, 3.0, and 10.0mg/kg, i.p.) did not affect overall locomotor activity; however, ethanol (2g/kg, i.p.) increased locomotor activity in males and females, and produced anxiolytic effects (increased time in the center of an open field) in females only. Because prairie voles have been shown to match the alcohol consumption of their cage mate, we evaluated the relationship between cage mates' alcohol drinking. There was an overall pattern of social facilitation (consumption by one cage mate predicted consumption by the other cage mate); however, we found significant individual differences across cages in which many cages did not show significant matching, and, in some cases one cage mate's consumption negatively predicted the other cage mate's consumption. Overall, our data provide support for the potential of oxytocin as a treatment to reduce alcohol consumption. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Fiscal Equity of Teacher Salaries and Compensation in Oklahoma (United States)

    Maiden, Jeffrey; Evans, Nancy O.


    This quantitative study investigated the degree to which financial resources supporting teachers was equitably distributed in Oklahoma. Teachers are an important resource and their importance is being increasingly emphasized as educators attempt to increase student achievement. Every student educated in Oklahoma should have an equal right to…

  8. Repeated and random components in Oklahoma's monthly precipitation record (United States)

    Precipitation across Oklahoma exhibits a high degree of spatial and temporal variability and creates numerous water resources management challenges. The monthly precipitation record of the Central Oklahoma climate division was evaluated in a proof-of-concept to establish whether a simple monthly pre...

  9. The Oklahoma PN/ADN Articulation Project Report. (United States)

    Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, Oklahoma City.

    In response to a critical nursing shortage in the state of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Practical Nursing (PN)/Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Articulation Project Coordinating Committee was formed in spring 1990 to develop a proposal for program articulation. A curriculum matrix was designed and adopted for use by five regional subcommittees which…

  10. 76 FR 42723 - Land Acquisitions; Osage Nation of Oklahoma (United States)


    ..., Osage County, State of Oklahoma, According to the United States Government survey thereof, Less and... Oklahoma, according to the United States Government survey thereof, described as follows: Commencing at the...; Thence South and parallel to the West line of the SE/4 NE/4 a distance of 1319.11 feet to a point on the...

  11. Oklahoma Aerospace Intellectual Capital/Educational Recommendations: An Inquiry of Oklahoma Aerospace Executives (United States)

    Nelson, Erin M.


    Scope and Method of Study: The purpose of this qualitative study was to conduct detailed personal interviews with aerospace industry executives/managers from both the private and military sectors from across Oklahoma to determine their perceptions of intellectual capital needs of the industry. Interviews with industry executives regarding…

  12. Drought, Climate Change and the Canadian Prairies (United States)

    Stewart, R. E.


    The occurrence of drought is a ubiquitous feature of the global water cycle. Such an extreme does not necessarily lead to an overall change in the magnitude of the global water cycle but it of course affects the regional cycling of water. Droughts are recurring aspects of weather and climate extremes as are floods and tornadoes, but they differ substantially since they have long durations and lack easily identified onsets and terminations. Drought is a relatively common feature of the North American and Canadian climate system and all regions of the continent are affected from time-to-time. However, it tends to be most common and severe over the central regions of the continent. The Canadian Prairies are therefore prone to drought. Droughts in the Canadian Prairies are distinctive in North America. The large scale atmospheric circulations are influenced by blocking from intense orography to the west and long distances from all warm ocean-derived atmospheric water sources; growing season precipitation is generated by a highly complex combination of frontal and convective systems; seasonality is severe and characterized by a relatively long snow-covered and short growing seasons; local surface runoff is primarily produced by snowmelt water; there is substantial water storage potential in the poorly drained, post-glacial topography; and aquifers are overlain by impermeable glacial till, but there are also important permeable aquifers. One example of Prairie drought is the recent one that began in 1999 with cessation of its atmospheric component in 2004/2005 and many of its hydrological components in 2005. This event produced the worst drought for at least a hundred years in parts of the Canadian Prairies. Even in the dust bowl of the 1930s, no single year over the central Prairies were drier than in 2001. The drought affected agriculture, recreation, tourism, health, hydro-electricity, and forestry in the Prairies. Gross Domestic Product fell some 5.8 billion and

  13. Biological assessment of environmental flows for Oklahoma (United States)

    Fisher, William L.; Seilheimer, Titus S.; Taylor, Jason M.


    Large-scale patterns in fish assemblage structure and functional groups are influenced by alterations in streamflow regime. In this study, we defined an objective threshold for alteration for Oklahoma streams using a combination of the expected range of 27 flow indices and a discriminant analysis to predict flow regime group. We found that fish functional groups in reference flow conditions had species that were more intolerant to flow alterations and preferences for stream habitat and faster flowing water. In contrast, altered sites had more tolerant species that preferred lentic habitat and slower water velocity. Ordination graphs of the presence and functional groups of species revealed an underlying geographical pattern roughly conforming to ecoregions, although there was separation between reference and altered sites within the larger geographical framework. Additionally, we found that reservoir construction and operation significantly altered fish assemblages in two different systems, Bird Creek in central Oklahoma and the Kiamichi River in southeastern Oklahoma. The Bird Creek flow regime shifted from a historically intermittent stream to one with stable perennial flows, and changes in fish assemblage structure covaried with changes in all five components of the flow regime. In contrast, the Kiamichi River flow regime did not change significantly for most flow components despite shifts in fish assemblage structure; however, most of the species associated with shifts in assemblage structure in the Kiamichi River system were characteristic of lentic environments and were likely related more to proximity of reservoirs in the drainage system than changes in flow. The spatial patterns in fish assemblage response to flow alteration, combined with different temporal responses of hydrology and fish assemblage structure at sites downstream of reservoirs, indicate that interactions between flow regime and aquatic biota vary depending on ecological setting. This

  14. 75 FR 65524 - United Auto Workers Local 1999, Oklahoma City, OK; Notice of Negative Determination Regarding... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Employment and Training Administration [TA-W-71,863] United Auto Workers Local... workers and former workers of United Auto Workers Local 1999, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (the subject firm... Auto Workers Local 1999, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, was based on the findings that the workers at the...

  15. Southern marl prairies conceptual ecological model (United States)

    Davis, S.M.; Loftus, W.F.; Gaiser, E.E.; Huffman, A.E.


    About 190,000 ha of higher-elevation marl prairies flank either side of Shark River Slough in the southern Everglades. Water levels typically drop below the ground surface each year in this landscape. Consequently, peat soil accretion is inhibited, and substrates consist either of calcitic marl produced by algal periphyton mats or exposed limestone bedrock. The southern marl prairies support complex mosaics of wet prairie, sawgrass sawgrass (Cladium jamaicense), tree islands, and tropical hammock communities and a high diversity of plant species. However, relatively short hydroperiods and annual dry downs provide stressful conditions for aquatic fauna, affecting survival in the dry season when surface water is absent. Here, we present a conceptual ecological model developed for this landscape through scientific concensus, use of empirical data, and modeling. The two major societal drivers affecting the southern marl prairies are water management practices and agricultural and urban development. These drivers lead to five groups of ecosystem stressors: loss of spatial extent and connectivity, shortened hydroperiod and increased drought severity, extended hydroperiod and drying pattern reversals, introduction and spread of non-native trees, and introduction and spread of non-native fishes. Major ecological attributes include periphyton mats, plant species diversity and community mosaic, Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis), marsh fishes and associated aquatic fauna prey base, American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), and wading bird early dry season foraging. Water management and development are hypothesized to have a negative effect on the ecological attributes of the southern marl prairies in the following ways. Periphyton mats have decreased in cover in areas where hydroperiod has been significantly reduced and changed in community composition due to inverse responses to increased nutrient availability. Plant species diversity and

  16. Sylvatic plague vaccine and management of prairie dogs (United States)

    Rocke, Tonie E.


    Scientists at the USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC), in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Wisconsin (UW), have developed a sylvatic plague vaccine that shows great promise in protecting prairie dogs against plague (Mencher and others, 2004; Rocke and others, 2010). Four species of prairie dogs reside in the United States and Canada, and all are highly susceptible to plague and regularly experience outbreaks with devastating losses. Along with habitat loss and poisoning, plague has contributed to a significant historical decline in prairie dog populations. By some estimates, prairie dogs now occupy only 1 to 2 percent of their former range (Proctor and others, 2006), with prairie dog colonies being now much smaller and fragmented than they were historically, making individual colonies more vulnerable to elimination by plague (Antolin and others, 2002). At least one species, the Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens) is listed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) as "threatened." Controlling plague is a vital concern for ongoing management and conservation efforts for prairie dogs. Current efforts to halt the spread of plague in prairie dog colonies typically rely on dusting individual prairie dog burrows with pesticides to kill plague-infected fleas. Although flea-control insecticides, such as deltamethrin, are useful in stopping plague outbreaks in these prairie dog colonies, dusting of burrows is labor intensive and time consuming and may affect other insects and arthropods. As an alternative approach, NWHC and UW scientists developed a sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) for prairie dogs that can be delivered via oral bait. Laboratory studies have shown that consumption of this vaccine-laden bait by different prairie dog species results in significant protection against plague infection that can last for at least 9 months (Rocke and others, 2010; Rocke, unpublished). Work has now shifted to optimizing baits and distribution methods for

  17. The Oklahoma Geographic Information Retrieval System (United States)

    Blanchard, W. A.


    The Oklahoma Geographic Information Retrieval System (OGIRS) is a highly interactive data entry, storage, manipulation, and display software system for use with geographically referenced data. Although originally developed for a project concerned with coal strip mine reclamation, OGIRS is capable of handling any geographically referenced data for a variety of natural resource management applications. A special effort has been made to integrate remotely sensed data into the information system. The timeliness and synoptic coverage of satellite data are particularly useful attributes for inclusion into the geographic information system.

  18. Ground-water quality assessment of the central Oklahoma Aquifer, Oklahoma; project description (United States)

    Christenson, S.C.; Parkhurst, D.L.


    In April 1986, the U.S. Geological Survey began a pilot program to assess the quality of the Nation's surface-water and ground-water resources. The program, known as the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) program, is designed to acquire and interpret information about a variety of water-quality issues. The Central Oklahoma aquifer project is one of three ground-water pilot projects that have been started. The NAWQA program also incudes four surface-water pilot projects. The Central Oklahoma aquifer project, as part of the pilot NAWQA program, will develop and test methods for performing assessments of ground-water quality. The objectives of the Central Oklahoma aquifer assessment are: (1) To investigate regional ground-water quality throughout the aquifer in the manner consistent with the other pilot ground-water projects, emphasizing the occurrence and distribution of potentially toxic substances in ground water, including trace elements, organic compounds, and radioactive constituents; (2) to describe relations between ground-water quality, land use, hydrogeology, and other pertinent factors; and (3) to provide a general description of the location, nature, and possible causes of selected prevalent water-quality problems within the study unit; and (4) to describe the potential for water-quality degradation of ground-water zones within the study unit. The Central Oklahoma aquifer, which includes in descending order the Garber Sandstone and Wellington Formation, the Chase Group, the Council Grove Group, the Admire Group, and overlying alluvium and terrace deposits, underlies about 3,000 square miles of central Oklahoma and is used extensively for municipal, industrial, commercial, and domestic water supplies. The aquifer was selected for study by the NAWQA program because it is a major source for water supplies in central Oklahoma and because it has several known or suspected water-quality problems. Known problems include concentrations of arsenic, chromium

  19. Carcass Search & Recovery Guidelines for Black Tailed Prairie Dogs (United States)

    The availability of dead or intoxicated prairie dogs above ground will be monitored, recorded and these carcasses will be properly disposed of, in accordance with the procedures described on this page.

  20. Two decades of prairie restoration at Fermilab, Batavia, Illinois

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Betz, R.F. [Northeastern Illinois Univ., Chicago, IL (United States); Lootens, R.J.; Becker, M.K. [Fermi National Accelerator Lab., Batavia, IL (United States)


    Successional Restoration is the method being used to restore the prairie at Fermilab on the former agricultural fields. This involves an initial planting, using aggressive species that have wide ecological tolerances which will grow well on abandoned agricultural fields. Collectively, these species are designated as the prairie matrix. The species used for this prairie matrix compete with and eventually eliminate most weedy species. They also provide an adequate fuel load capable of sustaining a fire within a few years after a site has been initially planted. Associated changes in the biological and physical structure of the soil help prepare the way for the successful introduction of plants of the later successional species. Only after the species of the prairie matrix are well established, is the species diversity increased by introducing species with narrower ecological tolerances. These species are thus characteristic of the later successional stages.

  1. Public knowledge and perceptions of black-tailed prairie dogs (United States)

    Lamb, B.L.; Cline, K.


    Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) historically occupied an 11-state region of the United States. We surveyed 1,900 residents (response rate 56%) of this region to understand citizen knowledge and perceptions about prairie dogs and their management. Those who have direct experience - e.g., those who live very close to prairie dog colonies or know the location of the nearest colony - have higher levels of knowledge. A significantly higher level of knowledge was documented among those who were politically active when compared with the general public. Those who found environmental issues difficult to understand were associated with lower knowledge. People with direct experience were likely to hold negative views, whereas those holding environmentalist values were likely to express positive attitudes toward the species. Although those with higher education reported more knowledge, there was no link between a person's level of knowledge and perceptions of prairie dog management.

  2. Brant Prairie : Union Gas customer service centre, Brantford, Ontario

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hensel, M.J.; Thompson, J. [The Walter Fedy Partnership, Kitchener, ON (Canada)


    The four-acre ecological restoration of tall grass prairie, wetland and Savannah ecosystems within the Union Gas Customer Service Centre in Brantford, Ontario is discussed. The restoration of the Brant Prairie site was instigated three years ago through Union Gas` land stewardship and environmental action initiative which tried to encourage the diversity and dynamics of each ecosystem, while creating a community resource for visitors to learn about natural heritage. The Brantford initiative includes: (1) protecting the sedge wetland which contained regionally rare species, (2) maintaining the dynamic water budget while protecting the sedge wetland from roadway contaminants, (3) creating a tall grass prairie similar in diversity and aesthetics to Brantford`s surviving prairie remnants, (4) creating a wildlife habitat for butterflies, birds and aquatic species, and (5) rediscovering partridge pea by uncovering a historic seed bank.

  3. Proceedings of the third prairie conservation and endangered species workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holroyd, G.L.; Diskson, H.L.; Regnier, M.; Smith, H.C. (eds.)


    The Canadian prairies support a major agricultural economy and a declining abundance of wildlife. Soil erosion and water quality threaten the long-term viability of agriculture; half of Canada's endangered and threatened birds and mammals share the prairies. Wise policies of resource management are needed to solve these problems. A workshop was held to address the issue of how to manage the prairies to promote sustained agriculture and to conserve the wildlife that are in jeopardy. Papers were presented on the relationships between agriculture and wildlife, land restoration, climate change, pesticides, the Prairie Conservation Action Plan, plant conservation, amphibians, reptiles, migratory birds and other wildfowl, and mammals. Separate abstracts have been prepared for two papers from this workshop.

  4. Natural Resources Information System for the State of Oklahoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mankin, C.J.


    The objective of this research program was to continue developing, editing, maintaining, utilizing and making publicly available the Natural Resources Information System (NRIS) for the State of Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Geological Survey, working with Geological Information Systems at the University of Oklahoma's Sarkeys Energy Center, undertook to construct this information system in response to the need for a computerized, centrally located library containing accurate, detailed information on the state's natural resources. Particular emphasis during this phase of development was placed on computerizing information related to the energy needs of the nation, specifically oil and gas

  5. Disease limits populations: plague and black-tailed prairie dogs (United States)

    Cully, Jack F.; Johnson, T.; Collinge, S.K.; Ray, C.


    Plague is an exotic vector-borne disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis that causes mortality rates approaching 100% in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus). We mapped the perimeter of the active portions of black-tailed prairie dog colonies annually between 1999 and 2005 at four prairie dog colony complexes in areas with a history of plague, as well as at two complexes that were located outside the distribution of plague at the time of mapping and had therefore never been affected by the disease. We hypothesized that the presence of plague would significantly reduce overall black-tailed prairie dog colony area, reduce the sizes of colonies on these landscapes, and increase nearest-neighbor distances between colonies. Within the region historically affected by plague, individual colonies were smaller, nearest-neighbor distances were greater, and the proportion of potential habitat occupied by active prairie dog colonies was smaller than at plague-free sites. Populations that endured plague were composed of fewer large colonies (>100 ha) than populations that were historically plague free. We suggest that these differences among sites in colony size and isolation may slow recolonization after extirpation. At the same time, greater intercolony distances may also reduce intercolony transmission of pathogens. Reduced transmission among smaller and more distant colonies may ultimately enhance long-term prairie dog population persistence in areas where plague is present.

  6. Interspecific comparisons of sylvatic plague in prairie dogs (United States)

    Cully, J.F.; Williams, E.S.


    Of the 3 major factors (habitat loss, poisoning, and disease) that limit abundance of prairie dogs today, sylvatic plague caused by Yersinia pestis is the 1 factor that is beyond human control. Plague epizootics frequently kill >99% of prairie dogs in infected colonies. Although epizootics of sylvatic plague occur throughout most of the range of prairie dogs in the United States and are well described, long-term maintenance of plague in enzootic rodent species is not well documented or understood. We review dynamics of plague in white-tailed (Cynomys leucurus), Gunnison's (C. gunnisoni), and black-tailed (C. ludovicianus) prairie dogs, and their rodent and flea associates. We use epidemiologic concepts to support an enzootic hypothesis in which the disease is maintained in a dynamic state, which requires transmission of Y. pestis to be slower than recruitment of new susceptible mammal hosts. Major effects of plague are to reduce colony size of black-tailed prairie dogs and increase intercolony distances within colony complexes. In the presence of plague, black-tailed prairie dogs will probably survive in complexes of small colonies that are usually >3 km from their nearest neighbor colonies.

  7. Dam-breach analysis and flood-inundation mapping for selected dams in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and near Atoka, Oklahoma (United States)

    Shivers, Molly J.; Smith, S. Jerrod; Grout, Trevor S.; Lewis, Jason M.


    Dams provide beneficial functions such as flood control, recreation, and storage of water supplies, but they also entail risk; dam breaches and resultant floods can cause substantial property damage and loss of life. The State of Oklahoma requires each owner of a high-hazard dam, which the Federal Emergency Management Agency defines as dams for which failure or improper operation probably will cause loss of human life, to develop an emergency action plan specific to that dam. Components of an emergency action plan are to simulate a flood resulting from a possible dam breach and map the resulting downstream flood-inundation areas. The resulting flood-inundation maps can provide valuable information to city officials, emergency managers, and local residents for planning an emergency response if a dam breach occurs.

  8. Awareness campaign. Orthopedic Hospital of Oklahoma launches awareness campaign. (United States)


    The Orthopedic Hospital of Oklahoma is a 25-bed inpatient and outpatient center with one focus: Orthopedics. To acquaint people with its services and build brand awareness to drive market share, the hospital launched a print campaign featuring actual patients.

  9. A protorothyridid captorhinomorph reptile from the Lower Permian of Oklahoma

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Reisz, Robert R


    A new primitive captorhinomorph reptile has been found near Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in fissure fill deposits believed to be contemporaneous with the lower part of the Arroyo Formation, Clear Fork Group (Leonardian...

  10. Structural and Geophysical Characterization of Oklahoma Basement (United States)

    Morgan, C.; Johnston, C. S.; Carpenter, B. M.; Reches, Z.


    Oklahoma has experienced a large increase in seismicity since 2009 that has been attributed to wastewater injection. Most earthquakes, including four M5+ earthquakes, nucleated at depths > 4 km, well within the pre-Cambrian crystalline basement, even though wastewater injection occurred almost exclusively in the sedimentary sequence above. To better understand the structural characteristics of the rhyolite and granite that makeup the midcontinent basement, we analyzed a 150 m long core recovered from a basement borehole (Shads 4) in Rogers County, NE Oklahoma. The analysis of the fracture network in the rhyolite core included measurements of fracture inclination, aperture, and density, the examination fracture surface features and fill minerology, as well as x-ray diffraction analysis of secondary mineralization. We also analyzed the highly fractured and faulted segments of the core with a portable gamma-ray detector, magnetometer, and rebound hammer. The preliminary analysis of the fractures within the rhyolite core showed: (1) Fracture density increasing with depth by a factor of 10, from 4 fractures/10m in the upper core segment to 40 fracture/10m at 150 m deeper. (2) The fractures are primarily sub-vertical, inclined 10-20° from the axis of the vertical core. (3) The secondary mineralization is dominated by calcite and epidote. (4) Fracture aperture ranges from 0.35 to 2.35mm based on the thickness of secondary filling. (5) About 8% of the examined fractures display slickenside striations. (6) Increases of elasticity (by rebound hammer) and gamma-ray emissions are systematically correlated with a decrease in magnetic susceptibility in core segments of high fracture density and/or faulting; this observation suggests diagenetic fracture re-mineralization.

  11. Black-tailed prairie dogs, cattle, and the conservation of North America's arid grasslands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Sierra-Corona

    Full Text Available Prairie dogs (Cynomys spp. have been eliminated from over 95% of their historic range in large part from direct eradication campaigns to reduce their purported competition with cattle for forage. Despite the longstanding importance of this issue to grassland management and conservation, the ecological interactions between cattle and prairie dogs have not been well examined. We address this issue through two complementary experiments to determine if cattle and prairie dogs form a mutualistic grazing association similar to that between prairie dogs and American bison. Our experimental results show that cattle preferentially graze along prairie dog colony edges and use their colony centers for resting, resembling the mutualistic relationship prairie dogs have with American bison. Our results also show that prairie dog colonies are not only an important component of the grassland mosaic for maintaining biodiversity, but also provide benefits to cattle, thereby challenging the long-standing view of prairie dogs as an undesirable pest species in grasslands.

  12. Investigation of the Transcriptome of Prairie Cord Grass, a New Cellulosic Biomass Crop

    KAUST Repository

    Gedye, Kristene; Gonzalez-Hernandez, Jose; Ban, Yuguang; Ge, Xijin; Thimmapuram, Jyothi; Sun, Fengjie; Wright, Chris; Ali, Shahjahan; Boe, Arvid; Owens, Vance


    in this paper describes the first investigation of the transcriptome of prairie cordgrass via Next Generation Sequencing Technology, 454 GS FLX. A total of 556,198 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were produced from four prairie cordgrass tissues: roots, rhizomes

  13. Prairie revegetation of a strip mine in Illinois: fifteen years after establishment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Corbett, E.A.; Anderson, R.C.; Rodgers, C.S. [Illinois State University, Normal, IL (United States). Dept. of Biological Sciences


    The long-term success of prairie planting on a former strip mine in northeastern Illinois was investigated. The site was reclaimed and planted with prairie species in the 1970s. Total biomass increased over time, largely as a result of an increase in biomass of non-prairie species. Biomass of prairie species remained unchanged because of an increase in Panicum virgatum (switchgrass) offsetting decreases in Sorghastrum nutans (Indian grass).

  14. Small mammals in successional prairie woodlands of the northern Great Plains (United States)

    Mark A. Rumble; John E. Gobeille


    Prairie woodlands comprise about 1 percent of the landscape in the northern Great Plains. However, prairie woodlands provide habitat for far more than 1 percent of the wildlife species that occur in the prairie region. With increasing pressures on natural resources, managers need methods for managing wildlife habitat and biodiversity that are based on ecological...

  15. 76 FR 77245 - Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge, Austin and Colorado Counties, TX... (United States)


    ...-FF02R06000] Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge, Austin and Colorado Counties, TX... (EA) for Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge, NWR), located approximately 60... Prairie Chicken NWR draft CCP and EA'' in the subject line of the message. Fax: Attn: Monica Kimbrough...

  16. 75 FR 21649 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Attwater's Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido... (United States)


    ...] Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Attwater's Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido attwateri... availability of the Attwater's Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido attwateri) Recovery Plan, Second Revision. A recovery plan was originally completed for the Attwater's prairie-chicken in 1983 and revised in 1993...

  17. Vulnerability of shortgrass prairie bird assemblages to climate change (United States)

    Skagen, Susan K.; Dreitz, Victoria; Conrey, Reesa Y.; Yackel, Amy; Panjabi, Arvind O.; Knuffman, Lekha


    The habitats and resources needed to support grassland birds endemic to North American prairie ecosystems are seriously threatened by impending climate change. To assess the vulnerability of grassland birds to climate change, we consider various components of vulnerability, including sensitivity, exposure, and adaptive capacity (Glick et al. 2011). Sensitivity encompasses the innate characteristics of a species and, in this context, is related to a species’ tolerance to changes in weather patterns. Groundnesting birds, including prairie birds, are particularly responsive to heat waves combined with drought conditions, as revealed by abundance and distribution patterns (Albright et al. 2010). To further assess sensitivity, we estimated reproductive parameters of nearly 3000 breeding attempts of a suite of prairie birds relative to prevailing weather. Fluctuations in weather conditions in eastern Colorado, 1997-2014, influenced breeding performance of a suite of avian species endemic to the shortgrass prairie, many of which have experienced recent population declines. High summer temperatures and intense rain events corresponded with lower nest survival for most species. Although dry conditions favored nest survival of Burrowing Owls and Mountain Plovers (Conrey 2010, Dreitz et al. 2012), drought resulted in smaller clutch sizes and lower nest survival for passerines (Skagen and Yackel Adams 2012, Conrey et al. in review). Declining summer precipitation may reduce the likelihood that some passerine species can maintain stable breeding populations in this region of the shortgrass prairie.

  18. Prairie dogs increase fitness by killing interspecific competitors. (United States)

    Hoogland, John L; Brown, Charles R


    Interspecific competition commonly selects for divergence in ecology, morphology or physiology, but direct observation of interspecific competition under natural conditions is difficult. Herbivorous white-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys leucurus) employ an unusual strategy to reduce interspecific competition: they kill, but do not consume, herbivorous Wyoming ground squirrels (Urocitellus elegans) encountered in the prairie dog territories. Results from a 6-year study in Colorado, USA, revealed that interspecific killing of ground squirrels by prairie dogs was common, involving 47 different killers; 19 prairie dogs were serial killers in the same or consecutive years, and 30% of female prairie dogs killed at least one ground squirrel over their lifetimes. Females that killed ground squirrels had significantly higher annual and lifetime fitness than non-killers, probably because of decreased interspecific competition for vegetation. Our results document the first case of interspecific killing of competing individuals unrelated to predation (IK) among herbivorous mammals in the wild, and show that IK enhances fitness for animals living under natural conditions. © 2016 The Author(s).

  19. Spent fuel storage at Prairie Island: January 1995 status

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Closs, J.; Kress, L.


    The disposal of spent nuclear fuel has been an issue for the US since the inception of the commercial nuclear power industry. In the past decade, it has become a critical factor in the continued operation of some nuclear power plants, including the two units at Prairie Island. As the struggles and litigation over storage alternatives wage on, spent fuel pools continue to fill and plants edge closer to premature shutdown. Due to the delays in the construction of a federal repository, many nuclear power plants have had to seek interim storage alternatives. In the case of Prairie Island, the safest and most feasible option is dry cask storage. This paper discusses the current status of the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSI) Project at Prairie Island. It provides a historical background to the project, discusses the notable developments over the past year, and presents the projected plans of the Northern States Power Company (NSP) in regards to spent fuel storage

  20. 77 FR 15273 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision (United States)


    ...: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision AGENCY: Environmental... hazardous waste management program. We authorized the following revisions: Oklahoma received authorization... its program revision in accordance with 40 CFR 271.21. The Oklahoma Hazardous Waste Management Act...

  1. Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of the Residential Provisions of the 2015 IECC for Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mendon, Vrushali V. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Zhao, Mingjie [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Taylor, Zachary T. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Poehlman, Eric A. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)


    The 2015 IECC provides cost-effective savings for residential buildings in Oklahoma. Moving to the 2015 IECC from the 2009 IECC base code is cost-effective for residential buildings in all climate zones in Oklahoma.

  2. Environmental Assessment KC-46A Depot Maintenance Activation, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma. Volume 1 (United States)


    Cultural Resources Tinker AFB is located in the south central Oklahoma archaeological region. Important research into the prehistory of central...No. 5. Oklahoma River Basin Survey Project. University of Oklahoma Research Institute. Norman. Bell, R. E. (editor). 1984. Prehistory of Oklahoma...February 2012. Galm, J.R. and P. Flynn. 1978. The Cultural Sequences of the Scott (34LF11) and Wann (34LF27) Sites and Prehistory of the Wister Valley

  3. Paltry past-precipitation: Predisposing prairie dogs to plague? (United States)

    Eads, David; Biggins, Dean E.


    The plague bacterium Yersinia pestis was introduced to California in 1900 and spread rapidly as a sylvatic disease of mammalian hosts and flea vectors, invading the Great Plains in the United States by the 1930s to 1940s. In grassland ecosystems, plague causes periodic, devastating epizootics in colonies of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus), sciurid rodents that create and maintain subterranean burrows. In doing so, plague inhibits prairie dogs from functioning as keystone species of grassland communities. The rate at which fleas transmit Y. pestis is thought to increase when fleas are abundant. Flea densities can increase during droughts when vegetative production is reduced and herbivorous prairie dogs are malnourished and have weakened defenses against fleas. Epizootics of plague have erupted frequently in prairie dogs during years in which precipitation was plentiful, and the accompanying cool temperatures might have facilitated the rate at which fleas transmitted Y. pestis. Together these observations evoke the hypothesis that transitions from dry-to-wet years provide conditions for plague epizootics in prairie dogs. Using generalized linear models, we analyzed a 24-year dataset on the occurrence of plague epizootics in 42 colonies of prairie dogs from Colorado, USA, 1982–2005. Of the 33 epizootics observed, 52% erupted during years with increased precipitation in summer. For the years with increased summer precipitation, if precipitation in the prior growing season declined from the maximum of 502 mm to the minimum of 200 mm, the prevalence of plague epizootics was predicted to increase 3-fold. Thus, reduced precipitation may have predisposed prairie dogs to plague epizootics when moisture returned. Biologists sometimes assume dry conditions are detrimental for plague. However, 48% of epizootics occurred during years in which precipitation was scarce in summer. In some cases, an increased abundance of fleas during dry years might

  4. Hydrogeology and simulation of groundwater flow in the Central Oklahoma (Garber-Wellington) Aquifer, Oklahoma, 1987 to 2009, and simulation of available water in storage, 2010–2059 (United States)

    Mashburn, Shana L.; Ryter, Derek W.; Neel, Christopher R.; Smith, S. Jerrod; Magers, Jessica S.


    The Central Oklahoma (Garber-Wellington) aquifer underlies about 3,000 square miles of central Oklahoma. The study area for this investigation was the extent of the Central Oklahoma aquifer. Water from the Central Oklahoma aquifer is used for public, industrial, commercial, agricultural, and domestic supply. With the exception of Oklahoma City, all of the major communities in central Oklahoma rely either solely or partly on groundwater from this aquifer. The Oklahoma City metropolitan area, incorporating parts of Canadian, Cleveland, Grady, Lincoln, Logan, McClain, and Oklahoma Counties, has a population of approximately 1.2 million people. As areas are developed for groundwater supply, increased groundwater withdrawals may result in decreases in long-term aquifer storage. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, investigated the hydrogeology and simulated groundwater flow in the aquifer using a numerical groundwater-flow model. The purpose of this report is to describe an investigation of the Central Oklahoma aquifer that included analyses of the hydrogeology, hydrogeologic framework of the aquifer, and construction of a numerical groundwater-flow model. The groundwater-flow model was used to simulate groundwater levels and for water-budget analysis. A calibrated transient model was used to evaluate changes in groundwater storage associated with increased future water demands.

  5. 40 CFR 81.47 - Central Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. (United States)


    ... Quality Control Region. 81.47 Section 81.47 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY... Air Quality Control Regions § 81.47 Central Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. The Metropolitan Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region has been renamed the Central Oklahoma Intrastate...

  6. Tallinna Ülikool ja Kesk-Oklahoma allkirjastasid koostööleppe

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae


    Septembris külastas Tallinna Ülikooli Kesk-Oklahoma Ülikooli (University of Central Oklahoma) ajalooprofessor ja rahvusvaheliste õpingute dekaan Richard M. Bernard. Külastuse jätkuna allkirjastasid Tallinna Ülikool ning Kesk-Oklahoma Ülikool koostöö memorandumi

  7. Des broussailles dans les prairies alpines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Camacho


    expliquer pourquoi l'embroussaillement gagne des prairies encore exploitées. Si la fauche permet de lutter efficacement contre l’avancée des ligneux, il n’en est pas de même dans les prairies pâturées non fauchées où la capacité de prélèvement par les troupeaux s’avère faible par rapport à la production d’herbe. Cette situation se répète d’année en année et c’est la cause la plus probable de la propagation des ligneux. Pour sécuriser leur système fourrager et pour simplifier le travail, les éleveurs constituent des unités de pâturage surdimensionnées par rapport aux besoins des animaux. Ils mettent en œuvre des pratiques de rattrapage, consistant en un entretien mécanique complémentaire au pâturage, pour contenir la dynamique des ligneux. De telles pratiques, exigeantes en travail, ne sont pas mises en œuvre sur toutes les pâtures. L’analyse des pratiques par des agronomes complète ainsi les études de milieux physiques et socio-économiques tant au niveau de la parcelle pâturée qu’à celui de la vallée.

  8. Hearing and spatial behavior in Gryllotalpa major Saussure (Orthoptera: Gryllotalpidae). (United States)

    Howard, Daniel R; Mason, Andrew C; Hill, Peggy S M


    The prairie mole cricket (Gryllotalpa major Saussure) is a rare orthopteran insect of the tallgrass prairie ecosystem of the south central USA. Populations are known to currently occupy fragmented prairie sites in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri, including The Nature Conservancy's Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in north central Oklahoma. Prairie mole cricket populations were surveyed at this site and at another site in Craig County, OK during the spring of 2005 and 2006, using the male cricket's acoustic call to locate advertising aggregations of males. Five males from one large aggregation were removed in a study to describe (1) the hearing thresholds across the call's range of frequencies, (2) the distances over which the higher harmonic components of the male's calls are potentially detectable, (3) the species' sensitivity to ultrasound and (4) the spatio-auditory dynamics of the prairie mole cricket lek. Results indicate that G. major has a bimodal pattern of frequency tuning, with hearing sensitivities greatest at the 2 kHz carrier frequency (41 dB SPL) and declining through the call's frequency range (84 dB at 10 kHz). A second sensitivity peak is evident in the ultrasound range at 25 kHz (62 dB SPL). Spatial analysis of G. major lek sites indicates that approximately 73% of males within the lek are spaced in such a way as to allow acoustic interaction at the species' carrier frequency, while any information in higher harmonic overtones in the call appears to be available only to nearest neighbors.

  9. Uranium favorability of southwestern Oklahoma and north-central Texas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stanton, G.D.; Brogdon, L.D.; Quick, J.V.; Thomas, N.G.; Martin, T.S.


    Results are presented of a project to identify and delineate units and (or) facies that are favorable for uranium in the Upper Pennsylvanian and Lower Permian strata of north-central Texas and southwestern Oklahoma. To aid in this evaluation, an assessment of the probable uranium rocks (Wichita and Arbuckle Mountains) was necessary. Surface samples were collected from igneous and sedimentary rocks. Stream-sediment samples were also collected. However, the main emphasis of the investigation of the sedimentary units was on the identification of sedimentary facies trends in the subsurface and an evaluation of the uranium favorability within units studied. The area investigated centers along the Red River, the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma. The project area encompasses approximately 17,000 sq. mi. It includes all or parts of Cooke, Montague, Clay, Wichita, Wilbarger, Hardeman, Baylor, Knox, and Archer Counties in Texas and Love, Jefferson, Cotton, Tillman, Jackson, Stephens, Carter, Comanche, Harmon, and Greer Counties in Oklahoma

  10. Nutrient removal by prairie filter strips in agricultural landscapes (United States)

    X. Zhou; M.J. Helmers; H. Asbjornsen; R. Kolka; M.D. Tomer; R.M. Cruse


    Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from agricultural landscapes have been identified as primary sources of excess nutrients in aquatic systems. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of prairie filter strips (PFS) in removing nutrients from cropland runoff in 12 small watersheds in central Iowa. Four treatments with PFS of different spatial...

  11. Resistance to plague among black-tailed prairie dog populations (United States)

    Rocke, Tonie E.; Williamson, Judy; Cobble, Kacy R.; Busch, Joseph D.; Antolin, Michael F.; Wagner, David M.


    In some rodent species frequently exposed to plague outbreaks caused by Yersinia pestis, resistance to the disease has evolved as a population trait. As a first step in determining if plague resistance has developed in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus), animals captured from colonies in a plague-free region (South Dakota) and two plague-endemic regions (Colorado and Texas) were challenged with Y. pestis at one of three doses (2.5, 250, or 2500 mouse LD50s). South Dakota prairie dogs were far more susceptible to plague than Colorado and Texas prairie dogs (pdogs were quite similar in their response, with overall survival rates of 50% and 60%, respectively. Prairie dogs from these states were heterogenous in their response, with some animals dying at the lowest dose (37% and 20%, respectively) and some surviving even at the highest dose (29% and 40%, respectively). Microsatellite analysis revealed that all three groups were distinct genetically, but further studies are needed to establish a genetic basis for the observed differences in plague resistance.

  12. Food habits of nesting prairie falcons in Campbell County (United States)

    John R. Squires; Stanley H. Anderson; Robert Oakleaf


    Fifteen species of prey were utilized by nesting Prairie Falcons (Falco mexicanus) as determined through pellet analysis. Thirteen-lined Ground Squirrels (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), the most common prey, were present in 91% of the pellets, followed by Western Meadowlarks (Sturnella neglecta) which were present in 56% of pellets. Horned Larks (Eremophila...

  13. Prairie Restoration Project: Alternatives for Identifying Gifted Students (United States)

    Salisbury, Katie E.; Rule, Audrey C.; Vander Zanden, Sarah M.


    An authentic, challenging curriculum engaged middle school students from an urban district in exploratory work related to restoring a small prairie at the school. Integrated science-literacy-arts activities were coupled with a system of thinking skills that helped students view issues from different perspectives. Impassioned guest speakers and an…

  14. Overview of Prairie Planting Techniques and Maintenance Requirements (United States)


    districts have these drills 6 ERDC TN-EMRRP-ER-05 February 2007 available for rent. A three-point broadcast seeder or a fertilizer spreader can...lengthens the growing season for prairie plants but shortens it for many weedy species (Pauly 1997). Fire allows for nutrient recycling in the ecosystem by

  15. Selected hydrologic data, Camas Prairie, south-central Idaho (United States)

    Young, H.W.; Backsen, R.L.; Kenyon, K.S.


    This report presents data collected during a 1-year study of the water resources of Camas Prairie, Idaho. Included are records of wells, discharge measurements of streams, hydrographs of water levels in wells, water-quality data, and drillers ' logs of wells. The data are conveniently made available to supplement an interpretive report, which will be published separately. (Woodard-USGS)

  16. Camel spider (Solifugae) use of prairie dog colonies (United States)

    Solifugids (camel spiders) are widespread throughout arid regions of western North America and are thought to be important in structuring desert arthropod communities. Despite the ubiquity of camel spiders, little is known about their ecology. Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) are als...

  17. Butterfly responses to prairie restoration through fire and grazing (United States)

    Vogel, Jennifer A.; Debinski, Diane M.; Koford, Rolf R.; Miller, J.R.


    The development of land for modern agriculture has resulted in losses of native prairie habitat. The small, isolated patches of prairie habitat that remain are threatened by fire suppression, overgrazing, and invasion by non-native species. We evaluated the effects of three restoration practices (grazing only, burning only, and burning and grazing) on the vegetation characteristics and butterfly communities of remnant prairies. Total butterfly abundance was highest on prairies that were managed with burning and grazing and lowest on those that were only burned. Butterfly species richness did not differ among any of the restoration practices. Butterfly species diversity was highest on sites that were only burned. Responses of individual butterfly species to restoration practices were highly variable. In the best predictive regression model, total butterfly abundance was negatively associated with the percent cover of bare ground and positively associated with the percent cover of forbs. Canonical correspondence analysis revealed that sites with burned only and grazed only practices could be separated based on their butterfly community composition. Butterfly communities in each of the three restoration practices are equally species rich but different practices yield compositionally different butterfly communities. Because of this variation in butterfly species responses to different restoration practices, there is no single practice that will benefit all species or even all species within habitat-specialist or habitat-generalist habitat guilds. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Oklahoma State University proposed Advanced Technology Research Center. Environmental Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) evaluating the construction and equipping of the proposed Advanced Technology Research Center (ATRC) at Oklahoma State University (OSU) in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Based on the analysis in the EA, the DOE has determined that the proposed action does not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. Therefore, the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement is not required.

  19. Characteristics of successful aviation leaders of Oklahoma (United States)

    Kutz, Mary N. Hill

    Scope and method of study. The purpose of the study was to examine the personal traits, skills, practices, behaviors, background, academic, and career success patterns of selected aviation leaders in Oklahoma. A purposive sample of 18 leaders who had achieved a top-ranked position of aviation leadership in an organization or a position of influence in the community was selected for interview. The leaders chosen for interview came from a variety of aviation organizations including government, academia, military, corporate aviation, and air carrier leadership as well as community leadership (specifically those aviation personnel who were engaged in a political or civic leadership role). Findings and conclusions. This study identified no common career choices, educational, family, or other background factors exclusively responsible for leadership success of all of the participants. Some of the more significant findings were that a high percentage of the leaders held undergraduate and advanced degrees; however, success had been achieved by some who had little or no college education. Aviation technical experience was not a prerequisite for aviation leadership success in that a significant number of the participants held no airman rating and some had entered positions of aviation leadership from non-aviation related careers. All had received some positive learning experience from their family background even those backgrounds which were less than desirable. All of the participants had been involved in volunteer civic or humanitarian leadership roles, and all had received numerous honors. The most frequently identified value expressed by the leaders was honesty; the predominant management style was participative with a strong backup style for directing, the most important skills were communication and listening skills, and the most frequently mentioned characteristics of success were honesty, credibility, vision, high standards, love for aviation and fiscal

  20. Recommended methods for range-wide monitoring of prairie dogs in the United States (United States)

    McDonald, Lyman L.; Stanley, Thomas R.; Otis, David L.; Biggins, Dean E.; Stevens, Patricia D.; Koprowski, John L.; Ballard, Warren


    One of the greatest challenges for conserving grassland, prairie scrub, and shrub-steppe ecosystems is maintaining prairie dog populations across the landscape. Of the four species of prairie dogs found in the United States, the Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens) is listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) as threatened, the Gunnison's prairie dog (C. gunnisoni) is a candidate for listing in a portion of its range, and the black-tailed prairie dog (C. ludovicianus) and white-tailed prairie dog (C. leucurus) have each been petitioned for listing at least once in recent history. Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) determined listing is not warranted for either the black-tailed prairie dog or white-tailed prairie dog, the petitions and associated reviews demonstrated the need for the States to monitor and manage for self-sustaining populations. In response to these findings, a multi-State conservation effort was initiated for the nonlisted species which included the following proposed actions: (1) completing an assessment of each prairie dog species in each State, (2) developing a range-wide monitoring protocol for each species using a statistically valid sampling procedure that would allow comparable analyses across States, and (3) monitoring prairie dog status every 3-5 years depending upon the species. To date, each State has completed an assessment and currently is monitoring prairie dog status; however, for some species, the inconsistency in survey methodology has made it difficult to compare data year-to-year or State-to-State. At the Prairie Dog Conservation Team meeting held in November 2008, there was discussion regarding the use of different methods to survey prairie dogs. A recommendation from this meeting was to convene a panel in a workshop-type forum and have the panel review the different methods being used and provide recommendations for range-wide monitoring protocols for each species of prairie dog. Consequently, the Western

  1. Diets of swift foxes (Vulpes velox) in continuous and fragmented prairie in Northwestern Texas (United States)

    Kamler, J.F.; Ballard, W.B.; Wallace, M.C.; Gipson, P.S.


    Distribution of the swift fox (Vulpes velox) has declined dramatically since the 1800s, and suggested causes of this decline are habitat fragmentation and transformation due to agricultural expansion. However, impacts of fragmentation and human-altered habitats on swift foxes still are not well understood. To better understand what effects these factors have on diets of swift foxes, scats were collected in northwestern Texas at two study sites, one of continuous native prairie and one representing fragmented native prairie interspersed with agricultural and fields in the Conservation Reserve Program. Leporids, a potential food source, were surveyed seasonally on both sites. Diets of swift foxes differed between sites; insects were consumed more on continuous prairie, whereas mammals, birds, and crops were consumed more on fragmented prairie. Size of populations of leporids were 2-3 times higher on fragmented prairie, and swift foxes responded by consuming more leporids on fragmented (11.1% frequency occurrence) than continuous (3.8%) prairie. Dietary diversity was greater on fragmented prairie during both years of the study. Differences in diets between sites suggested that the swift fox is an adaptable and opportunistic feeder, able to exploit a variety of food resources, probably in relation to availability of food. We suggest that compared to continuous native prairie, fragmented prairie can offer swift foxes a more diverse prey base, at least within the mosaic of native prairie, agricultural, and fields that are in the Conservation Reserve Program.

  2. Ecosystem engineering varies spatially: a test of the vegetation modification paradigm for prairie dogs (United States)

    Baker, Bruce W.; Augustine, David J.; Sedgwick, James A.; Lubow, Bruce C.


    Colonial, burrowing herbivores can be engineers of grassland and shrubland ecosystems worldwide. Spatial variation in landscapes suggests caution when extrapolating single-place studies of single species, but lack of data and the need to generalize often leads to ‘model system’ thinking and application of results beyond appropriate statistical inference. Generalizations about the engineering effects of prairie dogs (Cynomys sp.) developed largely from intensive study at a single complex of black-tailed prairie dogs C. ludovicianus in northern mixed prairie, but have been extrapolated to other ecoregions and prairie dog species in North America, and other colonial, burrowing herbivores. We tested the paradigm that prairie dogs decrease vegetation volume and the cover of grasses and tall shrubs, and increase bare ground and forb cover. We sampled vegetation on and off 279 colonies at 13 complexes of 3 prairie dog species widely distributed across 5 ecoregions in North America. The paradigm was generally supported at 7 black-tailed prairie dog complexes in northern mixed prairie, where vegetation volume, grass cover, and tall shrub cover were lower, and bare ground and forb cover were higher, on colonies than at paired off-colony sites. Outside the northern mixed prairie, all 3 prairie dog species consistently reduced vegetation volume, but their effects on cover of plant functional groups varied with prairie dog species and the grazing tolerance of dominant perennial grasses. White-tailed prairie dogs C. leucurus in sagebrush steppe did not reduce shrub cover, whereas black-tailed prairie dogs suppressed shrub cover at all complexes with tall shrubs in the surrounding habitat matrix. Black-tailed prairie dogs in shortgrass steppe and Gunnison's prairie dogs C. gunnisoni in Colorado Plateau grassland both had relatively minor effects on grass cover, which may reflect the dominance of grazing-tolerant shortgrasses at both complexes. Variation in modification of

  3. Making the Invisible Visible: The Oklahoma Science Project. (United States)

    McCarty, Robbie; Pedersen, Jon E.


    Reports that teachers in preservice education programs still view the teaching of science much in the same traditional ways as our predecessors. "The Oklahoma Science Project (OSP) Model for Professional Development: Practicing Science Across Contexts" will build discourses and relationships that can be extended across contexts to establish…

  4. Forest statistics for east Oklahoma counties - l993 (United States)

    Patrick E. Miller; Andrew J. Hartsell; Jack D. London


    This report contains the statistical tables and figures derived from data obtained during a recent inventory of east Oklahoma. The multiresource inventory included 18 counties and two survey regions. Data on forest acreage and timber volume involved a three-step procedure. First, estimate of forest acreage were made for each county using aerial photographs....

  5. The Native American Studies Program at the University of Oklahoma. (United States)

    Kidwell, Clara Sue


    Begun in 1994, the Native American Studies program at the University of Oklahoma is an interdisciplinary B.A. program with a liberal arts orientation and strong emphasis on contemporary American Indian policy. Program strengths include the number and diversity of the faculty involved, the four Native languages taught, connections to tribal…

  6. Digital Learning Compass: Distance Education State Almanac 2017. Oklahoma (United States)

    Seaman, Julia E.; Seaman, Jeff


    This brief report uses data collected under the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) Fall Enrollment survey to highlight distance education data in the state of Oklahoma. The sample for this analysis is comprised of all active, degree-granting…

  7. 75 FR 23280 - Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma Alcohol Control Ordinance (United States)


    .... Application of Federal Law. Federal law forbids the introduction, possession, and sale of liquor in Indian... State of Oklahoma. D. ``Applicant'' means any person who submits an application to the Alcohol... adjacent thereto; public restaurants, buildings, meeting halls, hotels, theaters, retail stores, and...

  8. Data Privacy Laws Follow Lead of Oklahoma and California (United States)

    Vance, Amelia


    Oklahoma's Student Data Accessibility, Transparency, and Accountability Act (known as the Student DATA Act) arose just as privacy concerns about student data were beginning to surface. According to Linnette Attai, founder of education technology compliance consultancy PlayWell LLC, "When this climate of data privacy first emerged in its…

  9. 75 FR 5015 - Television Broadcasting Services; Oklahoma City, OK (United States)


    ...] Television Broadcasting Services; Oklahoma City, OK AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission. ACTION... procedures for comments, see 47 CFR 1.415 and 1.420. List of Subjects in 47 CFR Part 73 Television, Television broadcasting. For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal Communications Commission...

  10. 75 FR 13236 - Television Broadcasting Services; Oklahoma City, OK (United States)


    ... FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION 47 CFR Part 73 [DA 10-395; MB Docket No. 10-19; RM-11589] Television Broadcasting Services; Oklahoma City, OK AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission. ACTION: Final... review Act, see 5 U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A). List of Subjects in 47 CFR Part 73 Television, Television...

  11. Ground-water conditions in the vicinity of Enid, Oklahoma (United States)

    Schoff, Stuart L.


    This memorandum summaries matter discussed at a meeting of the City Commission of Enid, Oklahoma, on Thursday, January 15, 1948, at which the write presented a brief analysis of the ground-water resources available to the City of Enid and answered questions brought up by the commissioners.

  12. Ecoregions and stream morphology in eastern Oklahoma (United States)

    Splinter, D.K.; Dauwalter, D.C.; Marston, R.A.; Fisher, W.L.


    Broad-scale variables (i.e., geology, topography, climate, land use, vegetation, and soils) influence channel morphology. How and to what extent the longitudinal pattern of channel morphology is influenced by broad-scale variables is important to fluvial geomorphologists and stream ecologists. In the last couple of decades, there has been an increase in the amount of interdisciplinary research between fluvial geomorphologists and stream ecologists. In a historical context, fluvial geomorphologists are more apt to use physiographic regions to distinguish broad-scale variables, while stream ecologists are more apt to use the concept of an ecosystem to address the broad-scale variables that influence stream habitat. For this reason, we designed a study using ecoregions, which uses physical and biological variables to understand how landscapes influence channel processes. Ecoregions are delineated by similarities in geology, climate, soils, land use, and potential natural vegetation. In the fluvial system, stream form and function are dictated by processes observed throughout the fluvial hierarchy. Recognizing that stream form and function should differ by ecoregion, a study was designed to evaluate how the characteristics of stream channels differed longitudinally among three ecoregions in eastern Oklahoma, USA: Boston Mountains, Ozark Highlands, and Ouachita Mountains. Channel morphology of 149 stream reaches was surveyed in 1st- through 4th-order streams, and effects of drainage area and ecoregion on channel morphology was evaluated using multiple regressions. Differences existed (?????0.05) among ecoregions for particle size, bankfull width, and width/depth ratio. No differences existed among ecoregions for gradient or sinuosity. Particle size was smallest in the Ozark Highlands and largest in the Ouachita Mountains. Bankfull width was larger in the Ozark Highlands than in the Boston Mountains and Ouachita Mountains in larger streams. Width/depth ratios of the

  13. University of Oklahoma - High Energy Physics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Skubic, Patrick L. [University of Oklahoma


    The High Energy Physics program at the University of Oklahoma, Pat Skubic, Principal Investigator, is attempting to understand nature at the deepest level using the most advanced experimental and theoretical tools. The four experimental faculty, Brad Abbott, Phil Gutierrez, Pat Skubic, and Mike Strauss, together with post-doctoral associates and graduate students, are finishing their work as part of the D0 collaboration at Fermilab, and increasingly focusing their investigations at the Large Hadron Collidor (LHC) as part of the ATLAS Collaboration. Work at the LHC has become even more exciting with the recent discovery by ATLAS and the other collaboration, CMS, of the long-sought Higgs boson, which plays a key role in generating masses for the elementary constituents of matter. Work of the OUHEP group has been in the three areas of hardware, software, and analysis. Now that the Higgs boson has been discovered, completing the Standard Model of fundamental physics, new efforts will focus on finding hints of physics beyond the standard model, such as supersymmetry. The OUHEP theory group (Kim Milton, PI) also consists of four faculty members, Howie Baer, Chung Kao, Kim Milton, and Yun Wang, and associated students and postdocs. They are involved in understanding fundamental issues in formulating theories of the microworld, and in proposing models that carry us past the Standard Model, which is an incomplete description of nature. They therefore work in close concert with their experimental colleagues. One also can study fundamental physics by looking at the large scale structure of the universe; in particular the ``dark energy'' that seems to be causing the universe to expand at an accelerating rate, effectively makes up about 3/4 of the energy in the universe, and yet is totally unidentified. Dark energy and dark matter, which together account for nearly all of the energy in the universe, are an important probe of fundamental physics at the very shortest

  14. Using Earthquake Analysis to Expand the Oklahoma Fault Database (United States)

    Chang, J. C.; Evans, S. C.; Walter, J. I.


    The Oklahoma Geological Survey (OGS) is compiling a comprehensive Oklahoma Fault Database (OFD), which includes faults mapped in OGS publications, university thesis maps, and industry-contributed shapefiles. The OFD includes nearly 20,000 fault segments, but the work is far from complete. The OGS plans on incorporating other sources of data into the OFD, such as new faults from earthquake sequence analyses, geologic field mapping, active-source seismic surveys, and potential fields modeling. A comparison of Oklahoma seismicity and the OFD reveals that earthquakes in the state appear to nucleate on mostly unmapped or unknown faults. Here, we present faults derived from earthquake sequence analyses. From 2015 to present, there has been a five-fold increase in realtime seismic stations in Oklahoma, which has greatly expanded and densified the state's seismic network. The current seismic network not only improves our threshold for locating weaker earthquakes, but also allows us to better constrain focal plane solutions (FPS) from first motion analyses. Using nodal planes from the FPS, HypoDD relocation, and historic seismic data, we can elucidate these previously unmapped seismogenic faults. As the OFD is a primary resource for various scientific investigations, the inclusion of seismogenic faults improves further derivative studies, particularly with respect to seismic hazards. Our primal focus is on four areas of interest, which have had M5+ earthquakes in recent Oklahoma history: Pawnee (M5.8), Prague (M5.7), Fairview (M5.1), and Cushing (M5.0). Subsequent areas of interest will include seismically active data-rich areas, such as the central and northcentral parts of the state.

  15. Climate impacts on the agribusiness sectors of a prairie economy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arthur, L.M.; Kooten, G.C. Van.


    Global warming is likely to result in increased agricultural output on the Canadian prairies. However, using input-output analysis, it is shown that the potential impact of global warming on agribusiness, while significant, is both uncertain and relatively small compared to the impact of government agricultural policies pertaining to the grain and livestock sectors. Furthermore, caution is required in deciding whether or not western Canada and prairie agribusinesses are net beneficiaries of a greenhouse effect because climate-induced changes in agricultural output elsewhere in the world still need to be taken into account. Most previous studies on American and European agriculture under the greenhouse effect predict reduced yields of current crops, which could mean improved markets for Canadian crops. 27 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs

  16. Prairie rattlesnake envenomation in 27 New World camelids. (United States)

    Sonis, J M; Hackett, E S; Callan, R J; Holt, T N; Hackett, T B


    Morbidity and case fatality from rattlesnake envenomation is regionally specific because of variability in relative toxicity of the species of snake encountered. A previous report of rattlesnake envenomation in New World camelids (NWC) from the western coastal United States documented high case fatality rates and guarded prognosis for survival. To describe clinical findings, treatments, and outcome of NWC with prairie rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis viridis) envenomation in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. Twenty-seven NWC admitted to the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital for evaluation of acute rattlesnake envenomation between 1992 and 2012. Medical records of NWC evaluated for rattlesnake envenomation as coded by the attending clinician and identified by a database search were reviewed retrospectively. Month of admission, signalment, area of bite, clinical and clinicopathologic data, treatments, and outcome were recorded. Twenty-five llamas and 2 alpacas were admitted for envenomation. Llamas were overrepresented compared to hospital caseload. The face was the most common site of envenomation, observed in 96% of recorded cases. Presenting clinical signs included fever, tachypnea, tachycardia, and respiratory distress. Nine animals required a tracheotomy. Median hospitalization time was 3 days and overall survival rate was 69%. Case fatality rate for prairie rattlesnake envenomation in NWC was lower than that reported in the Western coastal region of the United States and similar to that reported for prairie rattlesnake envenomation in horses. Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

  17. Resting state brain networks in the prairie vole. (United States)

    Ortiz, Juan J; Portillo, Wendy; Paredes, Raul G; Young, Larry J; Alcauter, Sarael


    Resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rsfMRI) has shown the hierarchical organization of the human brain into large-scale complex networks, referred as resting state networks. This technique has turned into a promising translational research tool after the finding of similar resting state networks in non-human primates, rodents and other animal models of great value for neuroscience. Here, we demonstrate and characterize the presence of resting states networks in Microtus ochrogaster, the prairie vole, an extraordinary animal model to study complex human-like social behavior, with potential implications for the research of normal social development, addiction and neuropsychiatric disorders. Independent component analysis of rsfMRI data from isoflurane-anestethized prairie voles resulted in cortical and subcortical networks, including primary motor and sensory networks, but also included putative salience and default mode networks. We further discuss how future research could help to close the gap between the properties of the large scale functional organization and the underlying neurobiology of several aspects of social cognition. These results contribute to the evidence of preserved resting state brain networks across species and provide the foundations to explore the use of rsfMRI in the prairie vole for basic and translational research.

  18. Dynamic Earthquake Triggering on Seismogenic Faults in Oklahoma (United States)

    Qin, Y.; Chen, X.; Peng, Z.; Aiken, C.


    Regions with high pore pressure are generally more susceptible to dynamic triggering from transient stress change caused by surface wave of distant earthquakes. The stress threshold from triggering studies can help understand the stress state of seismogenic faults. The recent dramatic seismicity increase in central US provides a rich database for assessing dynamic triggering phenomena. We begin our study by conducting a systematic analysis of dynamic triggering for the continental U.S using ANSS catalog (with magnitude of completeness Mc=3) from 49 global mainshocks (Ms>6.5, depth1kPa). We calculate β value for each 1° by 1° bins in 30 days before and 10 days after the mainshock. To identify regions that experience triggering from a distant mainshock, we generate a stacked map using β≥2 - which represents significant seismicity rate increase. As expected, the geothermal and volcanic fields in California show clear response to distant earthquakes. We also note areas in Oklahoma and north Texas show enhanced triggering, where wastewater-injection induced seismicity are occurring. Next we focus on Oklahoma and use a local catalog from Oklahoma Geological Survey with lower completeness threshold Mc to calculate the beta map in 0.2° by 0.2° bins for each selected mainshock to obtain finer spatial resolutions of the triggering behavior. For those grids with β larger than 2.0, we use waveforms from nearby stations to search for triggered events. The April 2015 M7.8 Nepal earthquake causes a statistically significant increase of local seismicity (β=3.5) in the Woodward area (west Oklahoma) during an on-going earthquake sequence. By visually examining the surface wave from the nearest station, we identify 3 larger local events, and 10 additional smaller events with weaker but discernable amplitude. Preliminary analysis shows that the triggering is related to Rayleigh wave, which would cause dilatational or shear stress changes along the strike direction of

  19. Hydrogeology and simulation of groundwater flow in the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer, south-central Oklahoma (United States)

    Christenson, Scott; Osborn, Noel I.; Neel, Christopher R.; Faith, Jason R.; Blome, Charles D.; Puckette, James; Pantea, Michael P.


    The Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer in south-central Oklahoma provides water for public supply, farms, mining, wildlife conservation, recreation, and the scenic beauty of springs, streams, and waterfalls. Proposed development of water supplies from the aquifer led to concerns that large-scale withdrawals of water would cause decreased flow in rivers and springs, which in turn could result in the loss of water supplies, recreational opportunities, and aquatic habitat. The Oklahoma Water Resources Board, in collaboration with the Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Geological Survey, Oklahoma State University, and the University of Oklahoma, studied the aquifer to provide the Oklahoma Water Resources Board the scientific information needed to determine the volume of water that could be withdrawn while protecting springs and streams. The U.S. Geological Survey, in coopertion with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, did a study to describe the hydrogeology and simulation of groundwater flow of the aquifer.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hahn, M.; Walton, R.


    Common wood-nymph butterfl ies are found throughout the United States and Canada. However, not much is known about how they overwinter or their preferences for particular grasses and habitats. In this study, the impact of prairie management plans on the abundance of the wood-nymph population was assessed, as well as the preference of these butterfl ies for areas with native or non-native grasses. The abundance of common wood-nymph butterfl ies was determined using Pollard walks; more common wood-nymph butterfl ies were found in the European grasses than were found in the burned and unburned prairie sites. The majority of the vegetation at each of the three sites was identifi ed and documented. Using a 1 X 3 ANOVA analysis, it was determined there were signifi cantly more butterfl ies in the European grasses than in the burned and unburned prairie sites (p < 0.0005). There was no signifi cant difference between the burned and unburned treatments of the prairie on the common wood-nymph population. A multiple variable linear regression model described the effect of temperature and wind speed on the number of observed common wood-nymph butterfl ies per hour (p = 0.026). These preliminary results need to be supplemented with future studies. Quadrat analysis of the vegetation from all three sites should be done to search for a correlation between common wood-nymph butterfl y abundance per hour and the specifi c types or quantity of vegetation at each site. The effect of vegetation height and density on the observer’s visual fi eld should also be assessed.

  1. Tuberculosis transmission in the Indigenous peoples of the Canadian prairies. (United States)

    Patel, Smit; Paulsen, Catherine; Heffernan, Courtney; Saunders, Duncan; Sharma, Meenu; King, Malcolm; Hoeppner, Vernon; Orr, Pamela; Kunimoto, Dennis; Menzies, Dick; Christianson, Sara; Wolfe, Joyce; Boffa, Jody; McMullin, Kathleen; Lopez-Hille, Carmen; Senthilselvan, Ambikaipakan; Long, Richard


    The prairie provinces of Canada. To characterize tuberculosis (TB) transmission among the Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadian-born peoples of the prairie provinces of Canada. A prospective epidemiologic study of consecutively diagnosed adult (age ≥ 14 years) Canadian-born culture-positive pulmonary TB cases on the prairies, hereafter termed "potential transmitters," and the transmission events generated by them. "Transmission events" included new positive tuberculin skin tests (TSTs), TST conversions, and secondary cases among contacts. In the years 2007 and 2008, 222 potential transmitters were diagnosed on the prairies. Of these, the vast majority (198; 89.2%) were Indigenous peoples who resided in either an Indigenous community (135; 68.2%) or a major metropolitan area (44; 22.2%). Over the 4.5-year period between July 1st, 2006 and December 31st 2010, 1085 transmission events occurred in connection with these potential transmitters. Most of these transmission events were attributable to potential transmitters who identified as Indigenous (94.5%). With a few notable exceptions most transmitters and their infected contacts resided in the same community type. In multivariate models positive smear status and a higher number of close contacts were associated with increased transmission; adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), 4.30 [1.88, 9.84] and 2.88 [1.31, 6.34], respectively. Among infected contacts, being Indigenous was associated with disease progression; OR and 95% CI, 3.59 [1.27, 10.14] and 6.89 [2.04, 23.25] depending upon Indigenous group, while being an infected casual contact was less likely than being a close contact to be associated with disease progression, 0.66 [0.44, 1.00]. In the prairie provinces of Canada and among Canadian-born persons, Indigenous peoples account for the vast majority of cases with the potential to transmit as well as the vast majority of infected contacts. Active case finding and preventative therapy

  2. 77 FR 24975 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revised Recovery Plan for the Utah Prairie Dog (United States)


    ...-FF06E00000] Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revised Recovery Plan for the Utah Prairie Dog... Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens). This species is federally listed as threatened under the... recovery plan for the Utah prairie dog. The Service and other Federal agencies also will take these...

  3. 75 FR 57055 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Revised Recovery Plan for Utah Prairie Dog (United States)


    ...] Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Revised Recovery Plan for Utah Prairie Dog AGENCY: Fish... recovery plan for the Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens). This species is federally listed as threatened... and peer reviewers in an appendix to the approved recovery plan. The Utah prairie dog (Cynomys...

  4. 76 FR 31906 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revising the Special Rule for the Utah Prairie Dog (United States)


    ... Special Rule for the Utah Prairie Dog AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Proposed rule... prairie dog. We are proposing to revise the existing limits on take, and we also propose a new incidental... dogs see: or

  5. 77 FR 46157 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revising the Special Rule for the Utah Prairie Dog (United States)


    ... Utah Prairie Dog; Final Rule #0;#0;Federal Register / Vol. 77 , No. 149 / Thursday, August 2, 2012...-AW02 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revising the Special Rule for the Utah Prairie Dog... special regulations for the conservation of the Utah prairie dog. We are revising our special regulations...

  6. 78 FR 26302 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as a Threatened... (United States)


    ...; 4500030113] RIN 1018-AY21 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken... the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus). In addition, we announce the reopening of the public comment period on the December 11, 2012, proposed rule to list the lesser prairie-chicken as a...

  7. 78 FR 75306 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as a Threatened... (United States)


    ...; 4500030113] RIN 1018-AY21 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken... the conservation of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus). In addition, we announce... prairie-chicken as a threatened species under the Act. We also announce the availability of the final...

  8. Exploitation and Optimization of Reservoir Performance in Hunton Formation, Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohan Kelkar


    Hunton formation in Oklahoma has been the subject of attention for the last ten years. The new interest started with the drilling of the West Carney field in 1995 in Lincoln County. Subsequently, many other operators have expanded the search for oil and gas in Hunton formation in other parts of Oklahoma. These fields exhibit many unique production characteristics, including: (1) decreasing water-oil or water-gas ratio over time; (2) decreasing gas-oil ratio followed by an increase; (3) poor prediction capability of the reserves based on the log data; and (4) low geological connectivity but high hydrodynamic connectivity. The purpose of this investigation is to understand the principal mechanisms affecting the production, and propose methods by which we can optimize the production from fields with similar characteristics.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohan Kelkar


    The West Carney Field in Lincoln County, Oklahoma is one of few newly discovered oil fields in Oklahoma. Although profitable, the field exhibits several unusual characteristics. These include decreasing water-oil ratios, decreasing gas-oil ratios, decreasing bottomhole pressures during shut-ins in some wells, and transient behavior for water production in many wells. This report explains the unusual characteristics of West Carney Field based on detailed geological and engineering analyses. We propose a geological history that explains the presence of mobile water and oil in the reservoir. The combination of matrix and fractures in the reservoir explains the reservoir's flow behavior. We confirm our hypothesis by matching observed performance with a simulated model and develop procedures for correlating core data to log data so that the analysis can be extended to other, similar fields where the core coverage may be limited.

  10. Aerobiology of Juniperus Pollen in Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico (United States)

    Levetin, Estelle; Bunderson, Landon; VandeWater, Pete; Luvall, Jeff


    Pollen from members of the Cupressaceae are major aeroallergens in many parts of the world. In the south central and southwest United States, Juniperus pollen is the most important member of this family with J. ashei (JA) responsible for severe winter allergy symptoms in Texas and Oklahoma. In New Mexico, pollen from J. monosperma (JM) and other Juniperus species are important contributors to spring allergies, while J. pinchotii (JP) pollinates in the fall affecting sensitive individuals in west Texas, southwest Oklahoma and eastern New Mexico. Throughout this region, JA, JM, and JP occur in dense woodland populations. Generally monitoring for airborne allergens is conducted in urban areas, although the source for tree pollen may be forested areas distant from the sampling sites. Improved pollen forecasts require a better understanding of pollen production at the source. The current study was undertaken to examine the aerobiology of several Juniperus species at their source areas for the development of new pollen forecasting initiatives.

  11. Ecology of fire in shortgrass prairie of the southern Great Plains (United States)

    Paulette L. Ford; Guy R. McPherson


    The ecology of fire in shortgrass prairie of the southern Great Plains includes a complex interaction between the shortgrass prairie ecosystem and its inhabitants, all inextricably linked to land-use patterns. The history of the relationship between man and fire has been filled with ambivalence and mistrust, along with an appreciation of the power of fire as a...

  12. 77 FR 75119 - Dakota Prairie Grasslands, North Dakota; Oil and Gas Development Supplemental Environmental... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Dakota Prairie Grasslands, North Dakota; Oil and Gas... to prepare a supplemental environmental impact statement. SUMMARY: In June of 2003, the Dakota... Dakota Prairie Grasslands Land and Resource Management Plan, based on the 2001 Northern Great Plains...

  13. The role of prairie dogs as a keystone species: response to Stapp (United States)

    B. Miller; R. Reading; J. Hoogland; T. Clark; G. Ceballos; R. List; S. Forrest; L. Hanebury; P. Manzano; J. Pacheco; D. Uresk


    Stapp (1998) recently argued that it was premature to characterize prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) as keystone species. In particular, Stapp directed much of his criticism at a paper some of us wrote (Miller et al. 1994). He mistakenly interprets the main objective of our paper as providing evidence that prairie dogs are keystone species. Rather, the...

  14. Review of black-tailed prairie dog reintroduction strategies and site selection: Arizona reintroduction (United States)

    Sarah L. Hale; John L. Koprowski; Holly Hicks


    The black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) was once widely distributed throughout the western United States; however, anthropogenic influences have reduced the species’ numbers to 2 percent of historical populations. Black-tailed prairie dogs are described as a keystone species in the grassland ecosystem, and provide many unique services, including burrows for...

  15. Black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) response to seasonality and frequency of fire (United States)

    Felicia D. Archuleta


    Fragmentation of the landscape, habitat loss, and fire suppression, all a result of European settlement and activities, have precipitated both the decline of Black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) populations and the occurrence of fire throughout the Great Plains, including the Shortgrass steppe of northeastern New Mexico. The presence of Black-tailed prairie...

  16. Prairie dog decline reduces the supply of ecosystem services and leads to desertification of semiarid grasslands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lourdes Martínez-Estévez

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic impacts on North American grasslands, a highly endangered ecosystem, have led to declines of prairie dogs, a keystone species, over 98% of their historical range. While impacts of this loss on maintenance of grassland biodiversity have been widely documented, much less is known about the consequences on the supply of ecosystem services. Here we assessed the effect of prairie dogs in the supply of five ecosystem services by comparing grasslands currently occupied by prairie dogs, grasslands devoid of prairie dogs, and areas that used to be occupied by prairie dogs that are currently dominated by mesquite scrub. Groundwater recharge, regulation of soil erosion, regulation of soil productive potential, soil carbon storage and forage availability were consistently quantitatively or qualitatively higher in prairie dog grasslands relative to grasslands or mesquite scrub. Our findings indicate a severe loss of ecosystem services associated to the absence of prairie dogs. These findings suggest that contrary to a much publicize perception, especially in the US, prairie dogs are fundamental in maintaining grasslands and their decline have strong negative impacts in human well - being through the loss of ecosystem services.

  17. Plant composition in oak savanna and woodland restoration at Prairie Fork Conservation Area in Missouri (United States)

    Nadia E. Navarrete-Tindall; J.W. Van Sambeek; Jamie Coe; Warren Taylor


    The wooded areas of the Prairie Fork Conservation Area in central Missouri are typical of the oak/hickory forest/prairie transition zone that will require active management to restore pre-settlement, grass dominated savannas and open woodlands to improve habitat for wildlife. We initiated a management program to restore savannas and woodlands by reducing the midstory (...

  18. Demography of black-tailed prairie dog populations reoccupying sites treated with rodenticide (United States)

    R. P. Cincotta; Daniel W. Uresk; R. M. Hansen


    A rodenticide, zinc phosphide, was applied to remove black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) from 6 haofa prairie dog colony in southwestern South Dakota. Another adjacent 6 ha was left untreated. The removal experiment was repeated two consecutive years. Contingency table analysis showed that the resultant population was not homogeneous;...

  19. Prairie chicken populations of the Sheyenne Delta in North Dakota, 1961-1987 (United States)

    Jerry D. Kobriger; David P. Vollink; Michael E. Mcneill; Kenneth F. Higgins


    Prairie chickens (Tympanuchus cupido pinnatus) were first censused on the Sheyenne Grasslands in 1961. The population was extremely low in the 1960's, gradually increased in the 1970's, and reached a peak of 410 in 1980. Sufficient evidence exists to link the increase in numbers of prairie chickens on the grasslands from 1961 through 1987...

  20. Effect of mid-summer haying on growth and reproduction in prairie forbs (United States)

    Becky Begay; Helen M. Alexander; Erin Questad


    Mid-summer haying is a common management practice for prairies; plant species could differ in the effect of haying on subsequent growth and reproduction. We examined the effect of haying on prairie species by performing a clipping experiment. For each of seven species, sixteen plants were chosen and half were randomly assigned to a clipping treatment and half to a...

  1. Physiologic Reference Ranges for Captive Black-Tailed Prairie Dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) (United States)

    Keckler, M Shannon; Gallardo-Romero, Nadia F; Langham, Gregory L; Damon, Inger K; Karem, Kevin L; Carroll, Darin S


    The black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) is a member of the order Rodentia and the family Sciuridae. Ecologically, prairie dogs are a keystone species in prairie ecology. This species is used as an animal model for human gallbladder disease and diseases caused by infection with Clostridium difficile, Yersinia pestis, Francisella tularensis, and most recently, Orthopoxvirus. Despite increasing numbers of prairie dogs used in research and kept as pets, few data are available on their baseline physiology in animal facility housing conditions. To establish baseline physiologic reference ranges, we designed a study using 18 wild-caught black-tailed prairie dogs. Telemetry data were analyzed to establish circadian rhythms for activity and temperature. In addition, hematologic and serum chemistry analyses were performed. Baseline measurements were used to establish the mean for each animal, which then were compiled and analyzed to determine the reference ranges. Here we present physiologic data on serum chemistry and hematology profiles, as well as weight, core body temperature, and daily activity patterns for black-tailed prairie dogs. These results reflect the use of multiple measurements from species- and age-matched prairie dogs and likely will be useful to ecologists, scientists interested in using this animal model in research, and veterinarians caring for pet prairie dogs. PMID:20587156

  2. A novel approach for assessing density and range-wide abundance of prairie dogs (United States)

    Aaron N. Facka; Paulette L. Ford; Gary W. Roemer


    Habitat loss, introduced disease, and government-sponsored eradication programs have caused population declines in all 5 species of prairie dogs. Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) currently occupy only about 2% of an extensive geographic range (160 million hectares) and were recently considered for listing under the United States...

  3. Encroachment Dynamics of Juniperus virginiana L. and Mesic Hardwood Species into Cross Timbers Forests of North-Central Oklahoma, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel L. Hoff


    Full Text Available Cross Timbers forests, typically dominated by Quercus stellata Wangenh. and Q. marilandica Muenchh., are the transition zone between eastern deciduous forest and prairie in the southern Great Plains. Fire exclusion beginning in the mid-1900s has led to increasing stand density and encroachment of fire-intolerant Juniperus virginiana L. and mesic hardwood. We measured current forest structure and tree ages of 25 stands (130 plots in north-central Oklahoma to characterize the extent and dynamics of encroachment. The respective basal area and stand density of the overstory (diameter at breast height; dbh > 10 cm were 19.0 m2 ha−1 and 407 trees ha−1 with Q. stellata comprising 43% of basal area and 42% of stand density. Quercus marilandica represented only 3% of basal area and 4% of overstory density. Juniperus virginiana represented 7% of basal area and 14% of stand density while mesic hardwoods, e.g., Celtis spp., Ulmus spp., Carya spp., 33% of basal area and stand density. The sapling layer was dominated by mesic hardwoods (68% and J. virginiana (25% while the seedling layer was dominated by mesic hardwoods (74%. The majority of Quercus recruited into the overstory between 1910–1970, while recruitment of J. virginiana and mesic hardwoods began more recently (post 1950s. Growth rate, based on the relationship between age and dbh, was faster for mesic hardwoods than for J. virginiana and Q. stellata. These results indicate that removal of recurrent surface fire as a disturbance agent has significantly altered forest composition in the Cross Timbers region by allowing encroachment of J. virginiana and fire-intolerant, mesic hardwoods. This increases wildfire risk because J. virginiana is very flammable and will alter how these forests respond to future drought and other disturbance events.

  4. Citizen knowledge and perception of black-tailed prairie dog management: Report to respondents (United States)

    Sexton, Natalie R.; Brinson, Ayeisha; Ponds, Phadrea D.; Cline, Kurt; Lamb, Berton L.


    What do citizens know about black-tailed prairie dogs, and where do they get their information? When management decisions need to be made regarding an animal such as the black-tailed prairie dog, an understanding of the species and its relationship to humans is necessary. This includes knowing the biology of the animal, where it lives, and how it interacts with other animals. But it is equally important for those making decisions about the species to understand citizens’ knowledge and perceptions so managers can effectively communicate with the public and help the public participate in planning and decision making activities. Unfortunately, what is known about public knowledge, perception, and preferences concerning prairie dog management is limited to data from only a few areas. This study attempts to answer the question: What do people in the short-grass prairie region of the United States know and think about black-tailed prairie dogs?

  5. Precipitation, Climate Change, and Parasitism of Prairie Dogs by Fleas that Transmit Plague. (United States)

    Eads, David A; Hoogland, John L


    Fleas (Insecta: Siphonaptera) are hematophagous ectoparasites that can reduce the fitness of vertebrate hosts. Laboratory populations of fleas decline under dry conditions, implying that populations of fleas will also decline when precipitation is scarce under natural conditions. If precipitation and hence vegetative production are reduced, however, then herbivorous hosts might suffer declines in body condition and have weakened defenses against fleas, so that fleas will increase in abundance. We tested these competing hypotheses using information from 23 yr of research on 3 species of colonial prairie dogs in the western United States: Gunnison's prairie dog (Cynomys gunnisoni, 1989-1994), Utah prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens, 1996-2005), and white-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys leucurus, 2006-2012). For all 3 species, flea-counts per individual varied inversely with the number of days in the prior growing season with >10 mm of precipitation, an index of the number of precipitation events that might have caused a substantial, prolonged increase in soil moisture and vegetative production. Flea-counts per Utah prairie dog also varied inversely with cumulative precipitation of the prior growing season. Furthermore, flea-counts per Gunnison's and white-tailed prairie dog varied inversely with cumulative precipitation of the just-completed January and February. These results complement research on black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) and might have important ramifications for plague, a bacterial disease transmitted by fleas that devastates populations of prairie dogs. In particular, our results might help to explain why, at some colonies, epizootics of plague, which can kill >95% of prairie dogs, are more likely to occur during or shortly after periods of reduced precipitation. Climate change is projected to increase the frequency of droughts in the grasslands of western North America. If so, then climate change might affect the occurrence of plague epizootics

  6. Ground-water-quality assessment of the Central Oklahoma Aquifer, Oklahoma: geochemical and geohydrologic investigations (United States)

    Parkhurst, David L.; Christenson, Scott C.; Breit, George N.


    The National Water-Quality Assessment pilot project for the Central Oklahoma aquifer examined the chemical and isotopic composition of ground water, the abundances and textures of minerals in core samples, and water levels and hydraulic properties in the flow system to identify geochemical reactions occurring in the aquifer and rates and directions of ground-water flow. The aquifer underlies 3,000 square miles of central Oklahoma and consists of Permian red beds, including parts of the Permian Garber Sandstone, Wellington Formation, and Chase, Council Grove, and Admire Groups, and Quaternary alluvium and terrace deposits.In the part of the Garber Sandstone and Wellington Formation that is not confined by the Permian Hennessey Group, calcium, magnesium, and bicarbonate are the dominant ions in ground water; in the confined part of the Garber Sandstone and Wellington Formation and in the Chase, Council Grove, and Admire Groups, sodium and bicarbonate are the dominant ions in ground water. Nearly all of the Central Oklahoma aquifer has an oxic or post-oxic environment as indicated by the large dissolved concentrations of oxygen, nitrate, arsenic(V), chromium(VI), selenium(VI), vanadium, and uranium. Sulfidic and methanic environments are virtually absent.Petrographic textures indicate dolomite, calcite, sodic plagioclase, potassium feldspars, chlorite, rock fragments, and micas are dissolving, and iron oxides, manganese oxides, kaolinite, and quartz are precipitating. Variations in the quantity of exchangeable sodium in clays indicate that cation exchange is occurring within the aquifer. Gypsum may dissolve locally within the aquifer, as indicated by ground water with large concentra-tions of sulfate, but gypsum was not observed in core samples. Rainwater is not a major source for most elements in ground water, but evapotranspiration could cause rainwater to be a significant source of potassium, sulfate, phosphate and nitrogen species. Brines derived from seawater are

  7. 40 CFR 81.123 - Southeastern Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. (United States)


    ... Quality Control Region. 81.123 Section 81.123 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY... Air Quality Control Regions § 81.123 Southeastern Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. The Southeastern Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region consists of the territorial area encompassed by the...

  8. 40 CFR 81.79 - Northeastern Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. (United States)


    ... Quality Control Region. 81.79 Section 81.79 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY... Air Quality Control Regions § 81.79 Northeastern Oklahoma Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. The Metropolitan Tulsa Intrastate Air Quality Control Region has been renamed the Northeastern Oklahoma Intrastate...

  9. 78 FR 32161 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision (United States)


    ... Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA... waste management program. We authorized the following revisions: Oklahoma received authorization for... authorization of its program revision in accordance with 40 CFR 271.21. The Oklahoma Hazardous Waste Management...

  10. 76 FR 18927 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision (United States)


    ...: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revision AGENCY: Environmental... hazardous waste management program. We authorized the following revisions: Oklahoma received authorization... accordance with 40 CFR 271.21. The Oklahoma Hazardous Waste Management Act (``OHWMA'') provides the ODEQ with...

  11. Ooh La La! Oklahoma Culinary Programs Cook up Great Partnerships with French Counterparts (United States)

    McCharen, Belinda


    The dream of a Franco-Oklahoma partnership began over a year ago when Chantal Manes, now from the French Ministry of Education, visited Oklahoma. The Technologie Academie in Soissons, France, had a goal for all the career and technical students in the Picardie Region of France to have an international experience before completing their technical…

  12. Secondary Agricultural Education Teachers as Agents of Change in Oklahoma and the Adoption of Precision Agriculture (United States)

    Nickeson, Beth


    Research indicates that precision agricultural education (PAE) in Oklahoma affects environmental quality, water conservation, and crop yields. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to explore the nature and perceived effectiveness of PAE in Oklahoma secondary agricultural education classes. The study was framed by the diffusion of…

  13. 76 FR 25322 - Oklahoma Rose Water LLC; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 13854-000] Oklahoma Rose Water LLC; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing Applications On September 30, 2010, Oklahoma Rose Water LLC filed an...

  14. 78 FR 72877 - Arkansas Electric Corporation v. Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company; Notice of Complaint (United States)


    ... Electric Corporation v. Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company; Notice of Complaint Take notice that on November... Commission (Commission), 18 CFR 385.206, Arkansas Electric Corporation (Complainant) filed a formal complaint against Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company (Respondents), alleging that the Respondent's Production Formula...

  15. The Fiscal Impact of Tax-Credit Scholarships in Oklahoma. School Choice Issues in the State (United States)

    Gottlob, Brian


    This analysis examines the demographics of the special needs population in public and private schools in Oklahoma and estimates the impact on school enrollments providing tax credit funded scholarship grants for special needs students. The author and his colleagues develop a model that shows how the expenditures of Oklahoma's school districts vary…

  16. Creep compliance and percent recovery of Oklahoma certified binder using the multiple stress recovery (MSCR) method. (United States)


    A laboratory study was conducted to develop guidelines for the Multiple Stress Creep Recovery : (MSCR) test method for local conditions prevailing in Oklahoma. The study consisted of : commonly used binders in Oklahoma, namely PG 64-22, PG 70-28, and...

  17. Season and application rates affect vaccine bait consumption by prairie dogs in Colorado and Utah, USA (United States)

    Tripp, Daniel W.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Streich, Sean P.; Brown, Nathanael L.; Fernandez, Julia Rodriguez-Ramos; Miller, Michael W.


    Plague, a zoonotic disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, causes high rates of mortality in prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.). An oral vaccine against plague has been developed for prairie dogs along with a palatable bait to deliver vaccine and a biomarker to track bait consumption. We conducted field trials between September 2009 and September 2012 to develop recommendations for bait distribution to deliver plague vaccine to prairie dogs. The objectives were to evaluate the use of the biomarker, rhodamine B, in field settings to compare bait distribution strategies, to compare uptake of baits distributed at different densities, to assess seasonal effects on bait uptake, and to measure bait uptake by nontarget small mammal species. Rhodamine B effectively marked prairie dogs' whiskers during these field trials. To compare bait distribution strategies, we applied baits around active burrows or along transects at densities of 32, 65, and 130 baits/ha. Distributing baits at active burrows or by transect did not affect uptake by prairie dogs. Distributing baits at rates of ≥65/ha (or ≥1 bait/active burrow) produced optimal uptake, and bait uptake by prairie dogs in the autumn was superior to uptake in the spring. Six other species of small mammals consumed baits during these trials. All four species of tested prairie dogs readily consumed the baits, demonstrating that vaccine uptake will not be an obstacle to plague control via oral vaccination.

  18. Factors influencing uptake of sylvatic plague vaccine baits by prairie dogs (United States)

    Abbott, Rachel C.; Russell, Robin E.; Richgels, Katherine; Tripp, Daniel W.; Matchett, Marc R.; Biggins, Dean E.; Rocke, Tonie E.


    Sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) is a virally vectored bait-delivered vaccine expressing Yersinia pestis antigens that can protect prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) from plague and has potential utility as a management tool. In a large-scale 3-year field trial, SPV-laden baits containing the biomarker rhodamine B (used to determine bait consumption) were distributed annually at a rate of approximately 100–125 baits/hectare along transects at 58 plots encompassing the geographic ranges of four species of prairie dogs. We assessed site- and individual-level factors related to bait uptake in prairie dogs to determine which were associated with bait uptake rates. Overall bait uptake for 7820 prairie dogs sampled was 70% (95% C.I. 69.9–72.0). Factors influencing bait uptake rates by prairie dogs varied by species, however, in general, heavier animals had greater bait uptake rates. Vegetation quality and day of baiting influenced this relationship for black-tailed, Gunnison’s, and Utah prairie dogs. For these species, baiting later in the season, when normalized difference vegetation indices (a measure of green vegetation density) are lower, improves bait uptake by smaller animals. Consideration of these factors can aid in the development of species-specific SPV baiting strategies that maximize bait uptake and subsequent immunization of prairie dogs against plague.

  19. Climate change and prairie pothole wetlands: mitigating water-level and hydroperiod effects through upland management (United States)

    Renton, David A.; Mushet, David M.; DeKeyser, Edward S.


    Prairie pothole wetlands offer crucial habitat for North America’s waterfowl populations. The wetlands also support an abundance of other species and provide ecological services valued by society. The hydrology of prairie pothole wetlands is dependent on atmospheric interactions. Therefore, changes to the region’s climate can have profound effects on wetland hydrology. The relevant literature related to climate change and upland management effects on prairie pothole wetland water levels and hydroperiods was reviewed. Climate change is widely expected to affect water levels and hydroperiods of prairie pothole wetlands, as well as the biota and ecological services that the wetlands support. In general, hydrologic model projections that incorporate future climate change scenarios forecast lower water levels in prairie pothole wetlands and longer periods spent in a dry condition, despite potential increases in precipitation. However, the extreme natural variability in climate and hydrology of prairie pothole wetlands necessitates caution when interpreting model results. Recent changes in weather patterns throughout much of the Prairie Pothole Region have been in increased precipitation that results in increased water inputs to wetlands above losses associated with warmer temperatures. However, observed precipitation increases are within the range of natural climate variability and therefore, may not persist. Identifying management techniques with the potential to affect water inputs to prairie pothole wetlands would provide increased options for managers when dealing with the uncertainties associated with a changing climate. Several grassland management techniques (for example, grazing and burning) have the potential to affect water levels and hydroperiods of prairie pothole by affecting infiltration, evapotranspiration, and snow deposition.

  20. Rangewide genetic analysis of Lesser Prairie-Chicken reveals population structure, range expansion, and possible introgression (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; DeYoung, Randall W; Fike, Jennifer; Hagen, Christian A.; Johnson, Jeff A.; Larsson, Lena C.; Patten, Michael


    The distribution of the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) has been markedly reduced due to loss and fragmentation of habitat. Portions of the historical range, however, have been recolonized and even expanded due to planting of conservation reserve program (CRP) fields that provide favorable vegetation structure for Lesser Prairie-Chickens. The source population(s) feeding the range expansion is unknown, yet has resulted in overlap between Lesser and Greater Prairie-Chickens (T. cupido) increasing the potential for hybridization. Our objectives were to characterize connectivity and genetic diversity among populations, identify source population(s) of recent range expansion, and examine hybridization with the Greater Prairie-Chicken. We analyzed 640 samples from across the range using 13 microsatellites. We identified three to four populations corresponding largely to ecoregions. The Shinnery Oak Prairie and Sand Sagebrush Prairie represented genetically distinct populations (F ST > 0.034 and F ST > 0.023 respectively). The Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic and Mixed Grass ecoregions appeared admixed (F ST = 0.009). Genetic diversity was similar among ecoregions and N e ranged from 142 (95 % CI 99–236) for the Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic to 296 (95 % CI 233–396) in the Mixed Grass Prairie. No recent migration was detected among ecoregions, except asymmetric dispersal from both the Mixed Grass Prairie and to a lesser extent the Sand Sagebrush Prairie north into adjacent Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic (m = 0.207, 95 % CI 0.116–0.298, m = 0.097, 95 % CI 0.010–0.183, respectively). Indices investigating potential hybridization in the Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic revealed that six of the 13 individuals with hybrid phenotypes were significantly admixed suggesting hybridization. Continued monitoring of diversity within and among ecoregions is warranted as are actions promoting genetic connectivity and range expansion.

  1. Spatial variation in keystone effects: Small mammal diversity associated with black-tailed prairie dog colonies (United States)

    Cully, J.F.; Collinge, S.K.; Van Nimwegen, R. E.; Ray, C.; Johnson, W.C.; Thiagarajan, Bala; Conlin, D.B.; Holmes, B.E.


    Species with extensive geographic ranges may interact with different species assemblages at distant locations, with the result that the nature of the interactions may vary spatially. Black-tailed prairie dogs Cynomys ludovicianus occur from Canada to Mexico in grasslands of the western Great Plains of North America. Black-tailed prairie dogs alter vegetation and dig extensive burrow systems that alter grassland habitats for plants and other animal species. These alterations of habitat justify the descriptor " ecological engineer," and the resulting changes in species composition have earned them status as a keystone species. We examined the impact of black-tailed prairie dogs on small mammal assemblages by trapping at on- and off-colony locations at eight study areas across the species' geographic range. We posed 2 nested hypotheses: 1) prairie dogs function as a keystone species for other rodent species; and 2) the keystone role varies spatially. Assuming that it does, we asked what are the sources of the variation? Black-tailed prairie dogs consistently functioned as a keystone species in that there were strong statistically significant differences in community composition on versus off prairie dog colonies across the species range in prairie grassland. Small mammal species composition varied along both latitudinal and longitudinal gradients, and species richness varied from 4 to 11. Assemblages closer together were more similar; such correlations approximately doubled when including only on- or off-colony grids. Black-tailed prairie dogs had a significant effect on associated rodent assemblages that varied regionally, dependent upon the composition of the local rodent species pool. Over the range of the black-tailed prairie dog, on-colony rodent richness and evenness were less variable, and species composition was more consistent than off-colony assemblages. ?? 2010 The Authors.

  2. Lesser prairie-chicken avoidance of trees in a grassland landscape (United States)

    Lautenbach, Joseph M.; Plumb, Reid T.; Robinson, Samantha G.; Hagen, Christian A.; Haukos, David A.; Pitman, James C.


    Grasslands are among the most imperiled ecosystems in North America. Reasons that grasslands are threatened include conversion to row-crop agriculture, fragmentation, and changes in fire regimes. The reduction of fire processes in remaining prairies has resulted in tree encroachment and establishment in grasslands, further reducing grassland quantity and quality. Grassland birds have been experiencing precipitous population declines in recent decades, commensurate with landscape changes to grasslands. The lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus Ridgway) is a declining species of prairie grouse of conservation concern. We used second- and third-order habitat selection metrics to test if female lesser prairie-chickens avoid grasslands where trees were present. Our results indicated that female lesser prairie-chickens selected habitats avoiding the nearest trees by 283 m on average, nearly twice as far as would be expected at random. Lesser prairie-chickens were 40 times more likely to use habitats with tree densities of 0 trees ∙ ha− 1 than habitats with 5 trees ∙ ha− 1. Probability of use indicated that lesser prairie-chickens were 19 times more likely to use habitats 1000 m from the nearest tree when compared with using habitats 0 m from the nearest tree. Nest survival was not affected at densities 2 trees ∙ ha− 1. Avoidance of trees could be due to perceived increased predation risk, reduced habitat quality, or a combination of these potentially confounding factors. Preventing further establishment and expansion of trees in landscapes occupied by lesser prairie-chickens could contribute to the continued persistence of the species. Additionally, restoring grasslands through tree removal may facilitate conservation efforts for grassland species such as the lesser prairie-chicken by improving habitat quality and promoting expansion of occupied range.

  3. Native prairie revegetation on wellsites in southeastern Alberta

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soulodre, E.; Naeth, A.; Hammermeister, A.


    The Native Prairie Revegetation Research Project (NPRRP) was initiated to address concerns about wellsite revegetation of native grassland. The objective was to determine the impact of alternative seeding treatments on soil and vegetation and to produce a quantifiable description of what constitutes successful revegetation of native prairie sites. Four wellsites, each site comprising four revegetation treatment plots and an undisturbed control plot, have been chosen for field study. The revegetation treatments included natural recovery without seeding; current mix dominated by native wheatgrass cultivars; simple mix seeding containing wheatgrasses plus other native grasses, and diverse mix seeding with a mixture of wheatgrasses, other grasses and thirteen perennial forbs. The plant communities were monitored for biomass production, species richness, species composition and a combination of factors which include density, frequency, canopy cover and basal cover, these collectively representing importance value. Nitrogen availability in the soil was also monitored. Results showed high importance values for wheatgrasses for all seeded treatments. Perennial non-wheatgrasses had low importance values in the seeded treatment but higher importance in the control plot. The dominance of wheatgrasses in the seeded treatments resulted in communities that differed significantly from both the control and natural recovery communities, probably due to suppression of the growth of other grasses

  4. Exploitation and Optimization of Reservoir Performance in Hunton Formation, Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelkar, Mohan


    This report presents the work done so far on Hunton Formation in West Carney Field in Lincoln County, Oklahoma. West Carney Field produces oil and gas from the Hunton Formation. The field was developed starting in 1995. Some of the unique characteristics of the field include decreasing water oil and ratio over time, decreasing gas-oil ratio at the beginning of production, inability to calculate oil reserves in the field based on long data, and sustained oil rates over long periods of time.

  5. Vegetation of wetlands of the prairie pothole region (United States)

    Kantrud, H.A.; Millar, J.B.; Van Der Valk, A.G.; van der Valk, A.


    Five themes dominate the literature dealing with the vegetation of palustrine and lacustrine wetlands of the prairie pothole region: environmental conditions (water or moisture regime, salinity), agricultural disturbances (draining, grazing, burning, sedimentation, etc.), vegetation dynamics, zonation patterns, and classification of the wetlands.The flora of a prairie wetland is a function of its water regime, salinity, and disturbance by man. Within a pothole, water depth and duration determines distribution of species. In potholes deep enough to have standing water even during droughts, the central zone will be dominated by submersed species (open water). In wetlands that go dry during periods of drought or annually, the central zone will be dominated by either tall emergent species (deep marsh) or midheight emergents (shallow marsh), respectively. Potholes that are only flooded briefly in the spring are dominated by grasses, sedges, and forbs (wet meadow). Within a pothole, the depth of standing water in the deepest, usually central, part of the basin determines how many zones will be present. Lists of species associated with different water regimes and salinity levels are presented.Disturbances due to agricultural activities have impacted wetlands throughout the region. Drainage has eliminated many potholes, particularly in the southern and eastern parts of the region. Grazing, mowing, and burning have altered the composition of pothole vegetation. The composition of different vegetation types impacted by grazing, haying, and cultivation is presented in a series of tables. Indirect impacts of agriculture (increased sediment, nutrient, and pesticide inputs) are widespread over the region, but their impacts on the vegetation have never been studied.Because of the periodic droughts and wet periods, many palustrine and lacustrine wetlands undergo vegetation cycles associated with water-level changes produced by these wet-dry cycles. Periods of above normal

  6. Mine spoil prairies expand critical habitat for endangered and threatened amphibian and reptile species (United States)

    Lannoo, Michael J.; Kinney, Vanessa C.; Heemeyer, Jennifer L.; Engbrecht, Nathan J.; Gallant, Alisa L.; Klaver, Robert W.


    Coal extraction has been occurring in the Midwestern United States for over a century. Despite the pre-mining history of the landscape as woodlands, spent surface coalfields are often reclaimed to grasslands. We assessed amphibian and reptile species on a large tract of coal spoil prairie and found 13 species of amphibians (nine frog and four salamander species) and 19 species of reptiles (one lizard, five turtle, and 13 snake species). Two state-endangered and three state species of special concern were documented. The amphibian diversity at our study site was comparable to the diversity found at a large restored prairie situated 175 km north, within the historic prairie peninsula.

  7. Conodont biostratigraphy of lower Ordovician rocks, Arbuckle Group, southern Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dresbach, R.I.; Ethington, R.L. (Univ. of Missouri, Columbia (USA))


    The Arbuckle Group of southern Oklahoma displays the only complete exposure of the shallow-water carbonates that characterize the Lower Ordovician of interior North America. Trilobites have been described from some parts of this sequence and sporadic occurrences of other invertebrates are known, but much of the sequence is sparingly fossiliferous. As a consequence, these magnificent exposures have not contributed notably to continuing efforts toward development of a comprehensive biostratigraphic scheme for the Lower Ordovician of the North American platform. Samples collected at 25-ft intervals through the Arbuckle Group along and adjacent to Interstate Highway 35 on the south flank of the Arbuckle anticline near Ardmore, Oklahoma, produced conodonts in abundances ranging from a few tens to over a thousand elements per kilogram and displaying good to excellent preservation with low CAI. These conodonts document a biostratigraphic continuum that provides a standard for correlation of Lower Ordovician rocks in the subsurface of central US and of the many localized and incomplete outcrops of generally equivalent strata in the Ozark and Upper Mississippi Valley regions. The stratigraphic continuity of the collections makes the I-35 section an ideal standard reference section for graphic correlation of Lower Ordovician rocks containing conodonts of the Mid-Continent Province.

  8. Environmental Characteristics and Geographic Information System Applications for the Development of Nutrient Thresholds in Oklahoma Streams (United States)

    Masoner, Jason R.; Haggard, Brian E.; Rea, Alan


    The U.S.Environmental Protection Agency has developed nutrient criteria using ecoregions to manage and protect rivers and streams in the United States. Individual states and tribes are encouraged by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to modify or improve upon the ecoregion approach. The Oklahoma Water Resources Board uses a dichotomous process that stratifies streams using environmental characteristics such as stream order and stream slope. This process is called the Use Support Assessment Protocols, subchapter15. The Use Support Assessment Protocols can be used to identify streams threatened by excessive amounts of nutrients, dependant upon a beneficial use designation for each stream. The Use Support Assessment Protocols, subchapter 15 uses nutrient and environmental characteristic thresholds developed from a study conducted in the Netherlands, but the Oklahoma Water Resources Board wants to modify the thresholds to reflect hydrologic and ecological conditions relevant to Oklahoma streams and rivers. Environmental characteristics thought to affect impairment from nutrient concentrations in Oklahoma streams and rivers were determined for 798 water-quality sites in Oklahoma. Nutrient, chlorophyll, water-properties, and location data were retrieved from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency STORET database including data from the U.S. Geological Survey, Oklahoma Conservation Commission, and Oklahoma Water Resources Board. Drainage-basin area, stream order, stream slope, and land-use proportions were determined for each site using a Geographic Information System. The methods, procedures, and data sets used to determine the environmental characteristics are described.

  9. Investigation of the Transcriptome of Prairie Cord Grass, a New Cellulosic Biomass Crop

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristene Gedye


    Full Text Available Prairie cordgrass ( Bosc ex Link is being developed as a cellulosic biomass crop. Development of this species will require numerous steps, including breeding, agronomy, and characterization of the species genome. The research in this paper describes the first investigation of the transcriptome of prairie cordgrass via Next Generation Sequencing Technology, 454 GS FLX. A total of 556,198 expressed sequence tags (ESTs were produced from four prairie cordgrass tissues: roots, rhizomes, immature inflorescence, and hooks. These ESTs were assembled into 26,302 contigs and 71,103 singletons. From these data were identified, EST–SSR (simple sequence repeat regions and cell wall biosynthetic pathway genes suitable for the development of molecular markers which can aid the breeding process of prairie cordgrass by means of marker assisted selection.

  10. Influence of resource availability on Juniperus virginiana expansion in a forest–prairie ecotone (United States)

    Despite being native to the United States, Juniperus virginiana has rapidly expanded in prairie ecosystems bringing detrimental ecological effects and increased wildfire risk. We transplanted J. virginiana seedlings in three plant communities to investigate mechanisms driving J. ...

  11. Anticoagulant Prairie Dog Bait Risk Mitigation Measures to Protect Endangered Species (United States)

    This Web page contains information on how certified pesticide applicators can use anticoagulant prairie dog bait products such as Rozol and Kaput-D while minimizing exposure risks to listed and non-target species.

  12. Investigation of the Transcriptome of Prairie Cord Grass, a New Cellulosic Biomass Crop

    KAUST Repository

    Gedye, Kristene


    Prairie cordgrass (Spartina pectinata Bosc ex Link) is being developed as a cellulosic biomass crop. Development of this species will require numerous steps, including breeding, agronomy, and characterization of the species genome. The research in this paper describes the first investigation of the transcriptome of prairie cordgrass via Next Generation Sequencing Technology, 454 GS FLX. A total of 556,198 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were produced from four prairie cordgrass tissues: roots, rhizomes, immature inflorescence, and hooks. These ESTs were assembled into 26,302 contigs and 71,103 singletons. From these data were identified, EST-SSR (simple sequence repeat) regions and cell wall biosynthetic pathway genes suitable for the development of molecular markers which can aid the breeding process of prairie cordgrass by means of marker assisted selection.

  13. Satellite mapping of surface biophysical parameters at the biome scale over the North American grasslands: A case study (United States)

    Wylie, B.K.; Meyer, D.J.; Tieszen, L.L.; Mannel, S.


    Quantification of biophysical parameters is needed by terrestrial process modeling and other applications. A study testing the role of multispectral data for monitoring biophysical parameters was conducted over a network of grassland field sites in the Great Plains of North America. Grassland biophysical parameters [leaf area index (LAI), fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (fPAR), and biomass] and their relationships with ground radiometer normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) were established in this study (r2=.66–.85) from data collected across the central and northern Great Plains in 1995. These spectral/biophysical relationships were compared to 1996 field data from the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in northeastern Oklahoma and showed no consistent biases, with most regression estimates falling within the respective 95% confidence intervals. Biophysical parameters were estimated for 21 “ground pixels” (grids) at the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in 1996, representing three grazing/burning treatments. Each grid was 30×30 m in size and was systematically sampled with ground radiometer readings. The radiometric measurements were then converted to biophysical parameters and spatially interpolated using geostatistical kriging. Grid-based biophysical parameters were monitored through the growing season and regressed against Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) NDVI (r2=.92–.94). These regression equations were used to estimate biophysical parameters for grassland TM pixels over the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in 1996. This method maintained consistent regression development and prediction scales and attempted to minimize scaling problems associated with mixed land cover pixels. A method for scaling Landsat biophysical parameters to coarser resolution satellite data sets (1 km2) was also investigated.

  14. Impacts of mesquite distribution on seasonal space use of lesser prairie-chickens (United States)

    Boggie, Matthew A.; Strong, Cody R.; Lusk, Daniel; Carleton, Scott A.; Gould, William R.; Howard, Randy L.; Nichols, Clay T.; Falkowski, Michael J.; Hagen, Christian A.


    Loss of native grasslands by anthropogenic disturbances has reduced availability and connectivity of habitat for many grassland species. A primary threat to contiguous grasslands is the encroachment of woody vegetation, which is spurred by disturbances that take on many forms from energy development, fire suppression, and grazing. These disturbances are exacerbated by natural- and human-driven cycles of changes in climate punctuated by drought and desertification conditions. Encroachment of honey mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa) into the prairies of southeastern New Mexico has potentially limited habitat for numerous grassland species, including lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus). To determine the magnitude of impacts of distribution of mesquite and how lesser prairie-chickens respond to mesquite presence on the landscape in southeastern New Mexico, we evaluated seasonal space use of lesser prairie-chickens in the breeding and nonbreeding seasons. We derived several remotely sensed spatial metrics to characterize the distribution of mesquite. We then used these data to create population-level resource utilization functions and predict intensity of use of lesser prairie-chickens across our study area. Home ranges were smaller in the breeding season compared with the nonbreeding season; however, habitat use was similar across seasons. During both seasons, lesser prairie-chickens used areas closer to leks and largely avoided areas with mesquite. Relative to the breeding season, during the nonbreeding season habitat use suggested a marginal increase in mesquite within areas of low intensity of use, yet aversion to mesquite was strong in areas of medium to high intensity of use. To our knowledge, our study is the first to demonstrate a negative behavioral response by lesser prairie-chickens to woody encroachment in native grasslands. To mitigate one of the possible limiting factors for lesser prairie-chickens, we suggest future conservation

  15. Widespread Use and Frequent Detection of Neonicotinoid Insecticides in Wetlands of Canada's Prairie Pothole Region


    Main, Anson R.; Headley, John V.; Peru, Kerry M.; Michel, Nicole L.; Cessna, Allan J.; Morrissey, Christy A.


    Neonicotinoids currently dominate the insecticide market as seed treatments on Canada's major Prairie crops (e.g., canola). The potential impact to ecologically significant wetlands in this dominantly agro-environment has largely been overlooked while the distribution of use, incidence and level of contamination remains unreported. We modelled the spatial distribution of neonicotinoid use across the three Prairie Provinces in combination with temporal assessments of water and sediment concent...

  16. Social isolation induces behavioral and neuroendocrine disturbances relevant to depression in female and male prairie voles


    Grippo, Angela J.; Gerena, Davida; Huang, Jonathan; Kumar, Narmda; Shah, Maulin; Ughreja, Raj; Carter, C. Sue


    Supportive social interactions may be protective against stressors and certain mental and physical illness, while social isolation may be a powerful stressor. Prairie voles are socially monogamous rodents that model some of the behavioral and physiological traits displayed by humans, including sensitivity to social isolation. Neuroendocrine and behavioral parameters, selected for their relevance to stress and depression, were measured in adult female and male prairie voles following 4 weeks o...

  17. Predation of artificial ground nests on white-tailed prairie dog colonies (United States)

    Baker, B.W.; Stanley, T.R.; Sedgwick, J.A.


    Prairie dog (Cynomys spp.) colonies are unique to prairie and shrub-steppe landscapes. However, widespread eradication, habitat loss, and sylvatic plague (Yersinia pestis) have reduced their numbers by 98% since historical times. Birds associated with prairie dogs also are declining. Potential nest predators, such as coyotes (Canis latrans), swift foxes (Vulpes velox), and badgers (Taxidea taxus), may be attracted to colonies where a high concentration of prairie dogs serve as available prey. Increased abundance of small mammals, including prairie dogs, also may increase the risk of predation for birds nesting on colonies. Finally, because grazing by prairie dogs may decrease vegetation height and canopy cover, bird nests may be easier for predators to locate. In this study, we placed 1,444 artificial ground nests on and off 74 white-tailed prairie dog (C. leucurus) colonies to test the hypothesis that nest predation rates are higher on colonies than at nearby off sites (i.e., uncolonized habitat). We sampled colonies from 27 May to 16 July 1997 at the following 3 complexes: Coyote Basin, Utah and Colorado; Moxa Arch, Wyoming; and Shirley Basin, Wyoming. Differences in daily predation rates between colonies and paired off sites averaged 1.0% (P = 0.060). When converted to a typical 14-day incubation period, predation rates averaged 14% higher on colonies (57.7 ?? 2.7%; ?? ?? SE) than at off sites (50.4 ?? 3.1%). Comparisons of habitat variables on colonies to off sites showed percent canopy cover of vegetation was similar (P = 0.114), percent bare ground was higher on colonies (P 0.288). Although we found the risk of nest predation was higher on white-tailed prairie dog colonies than at off sites, fitness of birds nesting on colonies might depend on other factors that influence foraging success, reproductive success, or nestling survival.

  18. Mountain plover nest survival in relation to prairie dog and fire dynamics in shortgrass steppe (United States)

    Augustine, David J.; Skagen, Susan K.


    Disturbed xeric grasslands with short, sparse vegetation provide breeding habitat for mountain plovers (Charadrius montanus) across the western Great Plains. Maintaining local disturbance regimes through prairie dog conservation and prescribed fire may contribute to the sustainability of recently declining mountain plover populations, but these management approaches can be controversial. We estimated habitat-specific mountain plover densities and nest survival rates on black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies and burns in the shortgrass steppe of northeastern Colorado. Mountain plover densities were similar on prairie dog colonies (5.9 birds/km2; 95% CI = 4.7–7.4) and sites burned during the preceding dormant season (6.7 birds/km2; 95% CI = 4.6–9.6), whereas the 29-day nest survival rate was greater on prairie dog colonies (0.81 in 2011 and 0.39 in 2012) compared to the burned sites (0.64 in 2011 and 0.17 in 2012). Reduced nest survival in 2012 compared to 2011 was associated with higher maximum daily temperatures in 2012, consistent with a previous weather-based model of mountain plover nest survival in the southern Great Plains. Measurements of mountain plover density relative to time since disturbance showed that removal of prairie dog disturbance by sylvatic plague reduced mountain plover density by 70% relative to active prairie dog colonies after 1 year. Plover densities declined at a similar rate (by 78%) at burned sites between the first and second post-burn growing season. Results indicate that black-tailed prairie dog colonies are a particularly important nesting habitat for mountain plovers in the southern Great Plains. In addition, findings suggest that prescribed burning can be a valuable means to create nesting habitat in landscapes where other types of disturbances (such as prairie dog colonies) are limited in distribution and size. 

  19. Index to names of oil and gas fields in Oklahoma, 1978

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lacina, J.L.


    This index contains the current and discontinued names of the oil and gas fields in Oklahoma. They are listed according to assignments made by the Oklahoma Nomenclature Committee of the Kansas-Oklahoma Division, Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association. Also listed are some names which have been used locally or unofficially for certain areas. Included also are: (1) the date when the field was named; (2) the description of location by county, township, and section; and (3) a statement as to the disposition of a field when it was combined with other fields.

  20. Wildlife habitat management on the northern prairie landscape (United States)

    Johnson, Douglas H.; Haseltine, Susan D.; Cowardin, Lewis M.


    The northern prairie landscape has changed dramatically within the past century as a result of settlement by Europeans. Natural ecosystems have been disrupted and wildlife populations greatly altered. Natural resource agencies control only limited areas within the landscape, which they cannot manage independently of privately owned lands. Wildlife managers need first to set quantifiable objectives, based on the survival, reproduction, and distribution of wildlife. Second, they need to build public support and partnerships for meeting those objectives. Finally, they need to evaluate progress not only with respect to attitudes of the public and partners but, more importantly, of the wildlife response. This paper describes some useful tools for managing information at all phases of this process. We follow by discussing management options at a landscape level. Examples are given that involve agency lands as well as private lands, managed for biological resources and diversity as well as economic sustainability.

  1. Classification of Prairie basins by their hysteretic connected functions (United States)

    Shook, K.; Pomeroy, J. W.


    Diagnosing climate change impacts in the post-glacial landscapes of the North American Prairies through hydrological modelling is made difficult by drainage basin physiography. The region is cold, dry and flat with poorly developed stream networks, and so the basin area that is hydrologically connected to the stream outlet varies with basin depressional storage. The connected area controls the contributing area for runoff reaching the stream outlet. As depressional storage fills, ponds spill from one to another; the chain of spilling ponds allows water to flow over the landscape and increases the connected area of the basin. As depressional storage decreases, the connected fraction drops dramatically. Detailed, fine-scale models and remote sensing have shown that the relationship between connected area and the depressional storage is hysteretic in Prairie basins and that the nature of hysteresis varies with basin physiography. This hysteresis needs to be represented in hydrological models to calculate contributing area, and therefore streamflow hydrographs. Parameterisations of the hysteresis are needed for large-scale models used for climate change diagnosis. However, use of parameterisations of hysteresis requires guidance on how to represent them for a particular basin. This study shows that it is possible to relate the shape of hysteretic functions as determined by detailed models to the overall physiography of the basin, such as the fraction of the basin below the outlet, and remote sensing estimates of depressional storage, using the size distribution and location of maximum ponded water areas. By classifying basin physiography, the hysteresis of connected area - storage relationships can be estimated for basins that do not have high-resolution topographic data, and without computationally-expensive high-resolution modelling.

  2. Bathymetry and capacity of Shawnee Reservoir, Oklahoma, 2016 (United States)

    Ashworth, Chad E.; Smith, S. Jerrod; Smith, Kevin A.


    Shawnee Reservoir (locally known as Shawnee Twin Lakes) is a man-made reservoir on South Deer Creek with a drainage area of 32.7 square miles in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. The reservoir consists of two lakes connected by an equilibrium channel. The southern lake (Shawnee City Lake Number 1) was impounded in 1935, and the northern lake (Shawnee City Lake Number 2) was impounded in 1960. Shawnee Reservoir serves as a municipal water supply, and water is transferred about 9 miles by gravity to a water treatment plant in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Secondary uses of the reservoir are for recreation, fish and wildlife habitat, and flood control. Shawnee Reservoir has a normal-pool elevation of 1,069.0 feet (ft) above North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88). The auxiliary spillway, which defines the flood-pool elevation, is at an elevation of 1,075.0 ft.The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the City of Shawnee, has operated a real-time stage (water-surface elevation) gage (USGS station 07241600) at Shawnee Reservoir since 2006. For the period of record ending in 2016, this gage recorded a maximum stage of 1,078.1 ft on May 24, 2015, and a minimum stage of 1,059.1 ft on April 10–11, 2007. This gage did not report reservoir storage prior to this report (2016) because a sufficiently detailed and thoroughly documented bathymetric (reservoir-bottom elevation) survey and corresponding stage-storage relation had not been published. A 2011 bathymetric survey with contours delineated at 5-foot intervals was published in Oklahoma Water Resources Board (2016), but that publication did not include a stage-storage relation table. The USGS, in cooperation with the City of Shawnee, performed a bathymetric survey of Shawnee Reservoir in 2016 and released the bathymetric-survey data in 2017. The purposes of the bathymetric survey were to (1) develop a detailed bathymetric map of the reservoir and (2) determine the relations between stage and reservoir storage


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The GPM Ground Validation Oklahoma Climatological Survey Mesonet MC3E data were collected during the Midlatitude Continental Convective Clouds Experiment (MC3E) in...

  4. Oklahoma State Briefing Book for low-level radioactive waste management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    The Oklahoma State Briefing Book is one of a series of state briefing books on low-level radioactive waste management practices. It has been prepared to assist state and federal agency officials in planning for safe low-level radioactive waste disposal. The report contains a profile of low-level radioactive waste generators in Oklahoma. The profile is the result of a survey of NRC licensees in Oklahoma. The briefing book also contains a comprehensive assessment of low-level radioactive waste management issues and concerns as defined by all major interested parties including industry, government, the media, and interest groups. The assessment was developed through personal communications with representatives of interested parties, and through a review of media sources. Lastly, the briefing book provides demographic and socioeconomic data and a discussion of relevant government agencies and activities, all of which may impact waste management practices in Oklahoma

  5. Drying shrinkage problems in high-plastic clay soils in Oklahoma. (United States)


    Longitudinal cracking in pavements due to drying shrinkage of high-plastic subgrade soils has been a major : problem in Oklahoma. Annual maintenance to seal and repair these distress problems costs significant amount of : money to the state. The long...

  6. Puud pillavad koort, kirjanikud tekste : Michel Butor Oklahomas / Ivar Ivask ; tõlkinud Mart Kuldkepp

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Ivask, Ivar, 1927-1992


    Michel Butor külastas 1971-1981 Oklahoma Ülikooli kolmel korral: 1971 esines loengutega, 1974 kuulus Neustadti kirjandusauhinna žüriisse ning 1981 toimus ülikoolis tema loomingule pühendatud Puterbaugh' konverents

  7. Oklahoma State Briefing Book for low-level radioactive waste management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    The Oklahoma State Briefing Book is one of a series of state briefing books on low-level radioactive waste management practices. It has been prepared to assist state and federal agency officials in planning for safe low-level radioactive waste disposal. The report contains a profile of low-level radioactive waste generators in Oklahoma. The profile is the result of a survey of NRC licensees in Oklahoma. The briefing book also contains a comprehensive assessment of low-level radioactive waste management issues and concerns as defined by all major interested parties including industry, government, the media, and interest groups. The assessment was developed through personal cmmunications with representatives of interested parties, and through a review of media sources. Lastly, the briefing book provides demographic and socioeconomic data and a discussion of relevant government agencies and activities, all of which may impact waste management practices in Oklahoma

  8. 76 FR 70940 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Oklahoma; Infrastructure... (United States)


    ...). Oklahoma's monitoring network includes the State and Local Air Monitoring Stations (SLAMS), which measure... and PM 2.5 monitor locations and current and historical data, including ozone design values for...

  9. The 3D Elevation Program: summary for Oklahoma (United States)

    Carswell, William J.


    Elevation data are essential to a broad range of applications, including forest resources management, wildlife and habitat management, national security, recreation, and many others. For the State of Oklahoma, elevation data are critical for flood risk management, infrastructure and construction management, agriculture and precision farming, natural resources conservation, wildlife and habitat management, and other business uses. Today, high-density light detection and ranging (lidar) data are the primary sources for deriving elevation models and other datasets. Federal, State, Tribal, and local agencies work in partnership to (1) replace data that are older and of lower quality and (2) provide coverage where publicly accessible data do not exist. A joint goal of local, State, and Federal partners is to acquire consistent, statewide coverage to support existing and emerging applications enabled by lidar data.

  10. Geothermal research at Oklahoma State University: An integrated approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, M.D.


    Oklahoma State University and the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA) are active in providing technical support to government and industry through technology transfer, technology development, technical assistance, and business development support. Technology transfer includes geothermal heat pump (GHP) system training for installers and architects and engineers, national teleconferences, brochures, and other publications. Technology development encompasses design software development, GLHEPRO, in-situ thermal conductivity testing methods and verification of data reduction techniques, and specifications and standards for GHP systems. Examples of technical assistance projects are a Navy officers quarters and a NASA Visitors Center which required design assistance and supporting information in reducing the life cycle cost to make them viable projects.

  11. The development and adoption of conservation tillage systems on the Canadian Prairies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Awada


    Full Text Available One of the major agricultural innovations on the Canadian Prairies over the last 40 years has been the introduction of conservation tillage (CT. Conservation tillage-a system that includes minimum and zero tillage (ZT -was introduced as an alternative to traditional (conventional tillage (TT to control soil degradation and to promote agricultural sustainability. The development and adoption of CT systems involved pioneer farmers, engineers, scientists, and farmer associations. By the end of the 1970s, CT started to take shape on the Prairies, but for a number of economic, technical, political and social reasons, the adoption of CT did not occur on any major scale before the 1990s. Today, more than 75% of the Prairie's cropland is under some form of CT with more than 50% under ZT. In this paper, the factors behind the development and adoption of conservation tillage technology on the Prairies in the period between 1930 and 2011 are reviewed. Then, some of the benefits of the adoption of CT on the Prairies are highlighted. The data show that CT and ZT became profitable for the majority of farmers during and after the 1990s, and that the increased use of CT contributed to the dramatic decrease in the area under summerfallow and to the increase in the area sown to canola and pulse crops. These changes contributed to the reduction of all forms of land degradation and to decreases in agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG emissions.

  12. Factors that affect parasitism of black-tailed prairie dogs by fleas (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Hoogland, John L.


    Fleas (Insecta: Siphonaptera) are hematophagous ectoparasites that feed on vertebrate hosts. Fleas can reduce the fitness of hosts by interfering with immune responses, disrupting adaptive behaviors, and transmitting pathogens. The negative effects of fleas on hosts are usually most pronounced when fleas attain high densities. In lab studies, fleas desiccate and die under dry conditions, suggesting that populations of fleas will tend to decline when precipitation is scarce under natural conditions. To test this hypothesis, we compared precipitation vs. parasitism of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) by fleas at a single colony during May and June of 13 consecutive years (1976–1988) at Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota, USA. The number of fleas on prairie dogs decreased with increasing precipitation during both the prior growing season (April through August of the prior year) and the just-completed winter–spring (January through April of current year). Due to the reduction in available moisture and palatable forage in dry years, herbivorous prairie dogs might have been food-limited, with weakened behavioral and immunological defenses against fleas. In support of this hypothesis, adult prairie dogs of low mass harbored more fleas than heavier adults. Our results have implications for the spread of plague, an introduced bacterial disease, transmitted by fleas, that devastates prairie dog colonies and, in doing so, can transform grassland ecosystems.

  13. A proposal to conserve black-footed ferrets and the prairie dog ecosystem (United States)

    Miller, Brian; Wemmer, Christen; Biggins, Dean; Reading, Richard


    Prairie dogs ( Cynomys spp.) have been poisoned throughout this century because of grazing competition with livestock. Recent evidence showed these early claims were exaggerated, but animal control was already entrenched in government policy. As a result, ongoing government subsidized poisoning has reduced prairie dogs to about 2% of their former distribution. The reduction of prairie dogs diminished species diversity in the arid grasslands of North America, including the potential extinction of the black-footed ferret ( Mustela nigripes). Cost-benefit analysis revealed that poisoning costs more than any grazing benefits accrued. This analysis did not consider the long-term costs of reversing ecosystem degradation, the intangible value of biological diversity as a public benefit, or the depletion of biotic resources as a loss of actual or potential wealth. The government presently finances the poisoning policy and the preservation of endangered species like the black-footed ferret, two apparently conflicting programs. We, therefore, propose an integrated management plan that considers both interests. We propose that federal monies allocated to the poisoning program be converted into a rebate for ranchers who manage livestock while preserving the prairie dog community. This would redirect funds and personnel already allocated to prairie dog eradication to an incentive for ranchers who manage for livestock and wildlife. Livestock interests and grassland biotic diversity would both benefit.

  14. Trichostatin A (TSA) facilitates formation of partner preference in male prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). (United States)

    Duclot, F; Wang, H; Youssef, C; Liu, Y; Wang, Z; Kabbaj, M


    In the socially monogamous prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster), the development of a social bonding is indicated by the formation of partner preference, which involves a variety of environmental and neurochemical factors and brain structures. In a most recent study in female prairie voles, we found that treatment with the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A (TSA) facilitates the formation of partner preference through up-regulation of oxytocin receptor (OTR) and vasopressin V1a receptor (V1aR) genes expression in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that TSA treatment also facilitates partner preference formation and alters OTR and V1aR genes expression in the NAcc in male prairie voles. We thus observed that central injection of TSA dose-dependently promoted the formation of partner preference in the absence of mating in male prairie voles. Interestingly, TSA treatment up-regulated OTR, but not V1aR, gene expression in the NAcc similarly as they were affected by mating - an essential process for naturally occurring partner preference. These data, together with others, not only indicate the involvement of epigenetic events but also the potential role of NAcc oxytocin in the regulation of partner preference in both male and female prairie voles. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Assessment of lesser prairie-chicken use of wildlife water guzzlers (United States)

    Boal, Clint W.; Borsdorf, Philip K.; Gicklhorn, Trevor S.


    Man-made water sources have been used as a management tool for wildlife, especially in arid regions, but the value of these water sources for wildlife populations is not well understood. In particular, the value of water as a conservation tool for Lesser Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) is unknown. However, this is a relevant issue due to a heightened conservation concern for the species and its occupancy of an arid landscape anticipated to experience warmer, drier springs and winters. We assessed if Lesser Prairie-Chickens would use commercially available wildlife water guzzlers and if there was any apparent selection between two design types. We confirmed that Lesser Prairie-Chickens would use bird friendly designed wildlife water guzzlers. Use was primarily during the lekking-nesting period (March–May) and the brood rearing period (June–July) and primarily by males. Although both designs were used, we found significantly greater use of a design that had a wider water trough and ramp built into the tank cover compared to a design that had a longer, narrower trough extending from the tank.Although we were unable to assess the physiological need of surface water by Lesser Prairie-Chickens, we were able to verify that they will use wildlife water guzzlers to access surface water. If it is found surface water is beneficial for Lesser Prairie-Chickens, game bird friendly designed guzzlers may be a useful conservation tool for the species.

  16. Hydrology of prairie wetlands: Understanding the integrated surface-water and groundwater processes (United States)

    Hayashi, Masaki; van der Kamp, Garth; Rosenberry, Donald O.


    Wetland managers and policy makers need to make decisions based on a sound scientific understanding of hydrological and ecological functions of wetlands. This article presents an overview of the hydrology of prairie wetlands intended for managers, policy makers, and researchers new to this field (e.g., graduate students), and a quantitative conceptual framework for understanding the hydrological functions of prairie wetlands and their responses to changes in climate and land use. The existence of prairie wetlands in the semi-arid environment of the Prairie-Pothole Region (PPR) depends on the lateral inputs of runoff water from their catchments because mean annual potential evaporation exceeds precipitation in the PPR. Therefore, it is critically important to consider wetlands and catchments as highly integrated hydrological units. The water balance of individual wetlands is strongly influenced by runoff from the catchment and the exchange of groundwater between the central pond and its moist margin. Land-use practices in the catchment have a sensitive effect on runoff and hence the water balance. Surface and subsurface storage and connectivity among individual wetlands controls the diversity of pond permanence within a wetland complex, resulting in a variety of eco-hydrological functionalities necessary for maintaining the integrity of prairie-wetland ecosystems.

  17. Phenotypic and genetic characterization of wildland collections of western and Searls prairie clovers for rangeland revegetation in the western USA (United States)

    Kishor Bhattarai


    Western prairie clover [Dalea ornata (Douglas ex Hook.) Eaton & J. Wright] is a perennial legume that occurs in the northern Great Basin, Snake River Basin, and southern Columbia Plateau, whereas Searls prairie clover [Dalea searlsiae (A. Gray) Barneby], also a perennial legume, occurs in the southern Great Basin and surrounding areas. Understanding the genetic and...

  18. Students' Perceptions of a Highly Controversial yet Keystone Species, the Black-Tailed Prairie Dog: A Case Study (United States)

    Fox-Parrish, Lynne; Jurin, Richard R.


    The authors used a case-study methodology to explore the perceptions of 30 9th-grade biology students relative to black-tailed prairie dogs. The case study, which involved classroom- and field-based experiences that focused on black-tailed prairie dogs, revealed 3 major themes: apathy, egocentrism, and naive conceptions. The authors had hoped that…

  19. 75 FR 70021 - South Dakota Prairie Winds Project; Partial Term Relinquishment and Release of Easement for Wind... (United States)


    ... requested financing for the project from the RUS. PW SD1 has also submitted an application to the Service to...] South Dakota Prairie Winds Project; Partial Term Relinquishment and Release of Easement for Wind Energy... impact statement (FEIS) on the South Dakota Prairie Winds Project issued by the Department of Energy's...

  20. Social recognition is context dependent in single male prairie voles (United States)

    Zheng, Da-Jiang; Foley, Lauren; Rehman, Asad; Ophir, Alexander G.


    Single males might benefit from knowing the identity of neighbouring males when establishing and defending boundaries. Similarly, males should discriminate between individual females if this leads to more reproductive opportunities. Contextual social cues may alter the value of learning identity. Knowing the identity of competitors that intrude into an animal’s territory may be more salient than knowing the identity of individuals on whose territory an animal is trespassing. Hence, social and environmental context could affect social recognition in many ways. Here we test social recognition of socially monogamous single male prairie voles, Microtus ochrogaster. In experiment 1 we tested recognition of male or female conspecifics and found that males discriminated between different males but not between different females. In experiment 2 we asked whether recognition of males is influenced when males are tested in their own cage (familiar), in a clean cage (neutral) or in the home cage of another male (unfamiliar). Although focal males discriminated between male conspecifics in all three contexts, individual variation in recognition was lower when males were tested in their home cage (in the presence of familiar social cues) compared to when the context lacked social cues (neutral). Experiment 1 indicates that selective pressures may have operated to enhance male territorial behaviour and indiscriminate mate selection. Experiment 2 suggests that the presence of a conspecific cue heightens social recognition and that home-field advantages might extend to social cognition. Taken together, our results indicate social recognition depends on the social and possibly territorial context. PMID:24273328

  1. Climate impacts on the hydrology of prairie wetlands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woo, Mingko; Rowsell, R.D.


    A study was carried out in the St. Denis National Wildlife Area, 45 km east of Saskatoon, to observe the hydrological processes and the temporal and spatial variability of slough responses to climate. One slough was instrumented for detailed study, showing that the high water level in spring was supported by snowmelt. In summer, rainfall was the major source of water supply, but was exceeded by losses to evaporation and groundwater recharge, leading to a decline of the water table and complete drying by June 13th. The duration that water remains in sloughs varies temporally and spatially. Ephemeral sloughs, deriving water mainly from snowmelt, tend to occupy higher ground, temporary sloughs rely on precipitation and surface runoff, and may receive groundwater discharge during wetter years. Permanent sloughs often occupy lower areas, receiving water from precipitation, lateral runoff, and groundwater discharge which buffers them from year to year fluctuations in precipitation. Tree ring analyses showed that meltwater is the major factor influencing tree growth, correlating the spatial variability of slough inundation to the temporal variability of winter snowfall. A study of slough hydrology is important to the understanding of the responses of Prairie wetlands to climatic variability and change. 17 refs., 2 figs

  2. Managing Water-Food-Energy Futures in the Canadian Prairies (United States)

    Wheater, H. S.; Hassanzadeh, E.; Nazemi, A.; Elshorbagy, A. A.


    The water-food-energy nexus is a convenient phrase to highlight competing societal uses for water and the need for cross-sectoral policy integration, but this can lead to oversimplification of the multiple dimensions of water (and energy) management. In practice, water managers must balance (and prioritize) demands for water for many uses, including environmental flows, and reservoir operation often involves managing conflicting demands, for example to maximize retention for supply, reduce storage to facilitate flood control, and constrain water levels and releases for habitat protection. Agriculture and water quality are also inextricably linked: irrigated agriculture requires appropriate water quality for product quality and certification, but agriculture can be a major source of nutrient pollution, with impacts on human and ecosystem health, drinking water treatment and amenity. And energy-water interactions include energy production (hydropower and cooling water for thermal power generation) and energy consumption (e.g. for pumping and water and wastewater treatment). These dependencies are illustrated for the Canadian prairies, and a risk-based approach to the management of climate change is presented. Trade-offs between economic benefits of hydropower and irrigation are illustrated for alternative climate futures, including implications for freshwater habitats. The results illustrate that inter-sector interactions vary as a function of climate and its variability, and that there is a need for policy to manage inter-sector allocations as a function of economic risk.

  3. Assessing diversity of prairie plants using remote sensing (United States)

    Gamon, J. A.; Wang, R.


    Biodiversity loss endangers ecosystem services and is considered as a global change that may generate unacceptable environmental consequences for the Earth system. Global biodiversity observations are needed to provide a better understanding of biodiversity - ecosystem services relationships and to provide a stronger foundation for conserving the Earth's biodiversity. While remote sensing metrics have been applied to estimate α biodiversity directly through optical diversity, a better understanding of the mechanisms behind the optical diversity-biodiversity relationship is needed. We designed a series of experiments at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, MN, to investigate the scale dependence of optical diversity and explore how species richness, evenness, and composition affect optical diversity. We collected hyperspectral reflectance of 16 prairie species using both a full-range field spectrometer fitted with a leaf clip, and an imaging spectrometer carried by a tram system to simulate plot-level images with different species richness, evenness, and composition. Two indicators of spectral diversity were explored: the coefficient of variation (CV) of spectral reflectance in space, and spectral classification using a Partial Least Squares Discriminant Analysis (PLS-DA). Our results showed that sampling methods (leaf clip-derived data vs. image-derived data) affected the optical diversity estimation. Both optical diversity indices were affected by species richness and evenness (Pguide regional studies of biodiversity estimation using high spatial and spectral resolution remote sensing.

  4. Map of mixed prairie grassland vegetation, Rocky Flats, Colorado

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clark, S J.V.; Webber, P J; Komarkova, V; Weber, W A


    A color vegetation map at the scale of 1:12,000 of the area surrounding the Rocky Flats, Rockwell International Plant near Boulder, Colorado, provides a permanent record of baseline data which can be used to monitor changes in both vegetation and environment and thus to contribute to future land management and land-use policies. Sixteen mapping units based on species composition were identified, and characterized by two 10-m/sup 2/ vegetation stands each. These were grouped into prairie, pasture, and valley side on the basis of their species composition. Both the mapping units and these major groups were later confirmed by agglomerative clustering analysis of the 32 vegetation stands on the basis of species composition. A modified Bray and Curtis ordination was used to determine the environmental factor complexes controlling the distribution of vegetation at Rocky flats. Recommendations are made for future policies of environmental management and predictions of the response to environmental change of the present vegetation at the Rocky Flats site.

  5. Homicide in the Canadian Prairies: elderly and nonelderly killings. (United States)

    Ahmed, A G; Menzies, Robin P D


    To examine the psychosocial and clinical characteristics of male perpetrators of elderly and nonelderly homicides in the Canadian Prairies. We examined data drawn from a study of 901 adult homicide offenders who were incarcerated or on parole between 1988 and 1992 in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Of those studied, 67 men were convicted of homicide involving 79 elderly victims, and 671 were convicted of homicide involving 675 nonelderly victims. Most perpetrators were single and engaged in irregular patterns of employment at the time of their index offence. Fourteen (20.8%) offenders with elderly victims had a history of psychiatric treatment, compared with 98 (14.6%) offenders with nonelderly victims; however, this difference was not statistically significant. Approximately 30% of both groups were diagnosed with personality disorders. A comparison of the index- offence characteristics showed no significant differences between the 2 groups. Our findings suggest that elderly individuals are more likely to be killed in their own homes by strangers. Social isolation appears to be a significant risk factor in cases of elderly homicide.

  6. Proceedings of the symposium on the management of prairie dog complexes for the reintroduction of the black-footed ferret (United States)

    Oldemeyer, John L.; Biggins, Dean E.; Miller, Brian J.; Crete, Ronald


    The workshop featured a review of current knowledge in the biology of prairie dogs in the context of managing black-footed ferret habitat. The review addressed two main components. The first consisted of a series of papers on prairie dog habitat and biology. The second component of the workshop was a summary of the participants' discussion about managing prairie dog complexes. This discussion was based on the previously identified papers and profited from the participants' expertise on the ecology of black-footed ferrets and prairie dogs. The report provides current and comprehensive information about management of habitat for prairie dogs and black-footed ferrets and is a useful guide for agencies and individuals that manage black-footed ferrets.

  7. A comparison of the speech patterns and dialect attitudes of Oklahoma (United States)

    Bakos, Jon

    The lexical dialect usage of Oklahoma has been well-studied in the past by the Survey of Oklahoma Dialects, but the acoustic speech production of the state has received little attention. Apart from two people from Tulsa and two people from Oklahoma City that were interviewed for the Atlas of North American English, no other acoustic work has been performed within the state. This dissertation begins to fill in these gaps by presenting twelve respondents interviewed by the Research on Dialects of English in Oklahoma (RODEO) project. For each speaker, a brief biography is given, including some of their regional and speech attitudes of Oklahoma. Then acoustic data from a wordlist and reading task are presented and compared. Analysis will consider plots of each speaker's vowel system as a whole, and will also examine many environments in isolation. These environments were chosen for their likely presence in Oklahoma, and include such dialect features as the Southern Shift, the pin/pen merger, the caught/cot merger, monophthongization of the PRICE vowel, and neutralization of tense vowels before /l./ After considering each respondent separately, some of their results will be pooled together to give a preliminary sense of the state of dialect within Oklahoma. Demographic variables such as age, gender, and urban/rural upbringing will be related to speakers' attitudes and acoustic production. This will serve two goals - first, to compare modern-day production to the findings of previous scholars, and second, to suggest a dialect trajectory for the state that could be studied further in additional research.

  8. Fault Lines: Seismicity and the Fracturing of Energy Narratives in Oklahoma (United States)

    Grubert, E.; Drummond, V. A.; Brandt, A. R.


    Fault Lines: Seismicity and the Fracturing of Energy Narratives in Oklahoma Virginia Drummond1, Emily Grubert21Stanford University, Stanford Earth Summer Undergraduate Research Program2Stanford University, Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and ResourcesOklahoma is an oil state where residents have historically been supportive of the oil and gas industry. However, a dramatic increase in seismic activity between 2009 and 2015 widely attributed to wastewater injection associated with oil production is a new and highly salient consequence of oil development, affecting local communities' relationship to the environment and to the oil industry. Understanding how seismicity plays into Oklahoma's evolving dialogue about energy is integral to understanding both the current realities and the future of energy communities in Oklahoma.This research engages Oklahoma residents through open-ended interviews and mixed quantitative-qualitative survey research to characterize how energy narratives shape identity in response to conflict between environmental outcomes and economic interest. We perform approximately 20 interviews with residents of Oklahoma, with particular attention to recruiting residents from a wide range of age groups and who work either within or outside the oil and gas industry. General population surveys supplementing detailed interviews with information about community characteristics, social and environmental priorities, and experience with hazards are delivered to residents selected at random from zip codes known to have experienced significant seismicity. We identify narratives used by residents in response to tension between economic and environmental concerns, noting Oklahoma as an interesting case study for how a relatively pro-industry community reacts to and reframes its relationship with energy development, given conflict. In particular, seismicity has fractured the dominant narrative of oil development as positive into new narratives

  9. Conservation Reserve Program mitigates grassland loss in the lesser prairie-chicken range of Kansas (United States)

    Haukos, David A.; Spencer, David; Hagen, Christian A.; Daniels, Melinda D.; Goodin, Doug


    Since the beginning of the 20th century, the overall occupied range of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) has declined by 84% commensurate with population trends. Much of this decline has been attributed to the loss and fragmentation of native grasslands throughout the lesser prairie-chicken range. However, quantification of changes in land cover in the distribution of the lesser prairie-chicken is lacking. Our objectives were to (1) document changes in the areal extent and connectivity of grasslands in the identified lesser prairie-chicken range in Kansas, USA, (>60% of extant lesser prairie-chicken population) from the 1950s to 2013 using remotely sensed data and (2) assess the potential of the Conservation Reserve Program (U.S. Department of Agriculture Program converting cropland to permanent cover; CRP) to mitigate grassland loss. Digital land cover maps were generated on a decadal time step through spectral classification of LANDSAT images and visual analysis of aerial photographs (1950s and 1960s). Landscape composition and configuration were assessed using FRAGSTATS to compute a variety of landscape metrics measuring changes in the amount of grassland present as well as changes in the size and configuration of grassland patches. With the exception of a single regional portion of the range, nearly all of the grassland converted to cropland in the lesser prairie-chicken range of Kansas occurred prior to the 1950s. Prior to the implementation of CRP, the amount of grassland decreased 3.6% between the 1950s and 1985 from 18,455 km2 to 17,788 km2. Since 1985, the overall amount of grassland in the lesser prairie-chicken range has increased 11.9% to 19,898 km2 due to implementation of CRP, although the area of grassland decreased between 1994 and 2013 as CRP contracts were not renewed by landowners. Since 1986 grassland in Kansas became more connected and less fragmented in response to the CRP. While the CRP has been successful in

  10. Conservation Reserve Program mitigates grassland loss in the lesser prairie-chicken range of Kansas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Spencer


    Full Text Available Since the beginning of the 20th century, the overall occupied range of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus has declined by 84% commensurate with population trends. Much of this decline has been attributed to the loss and fragmentation of native grasslands throughout the lesser prairie-chicken range. However, quantification of changes in land cover in the distribution of the lesser prairie-chicken is lacking. Our objectives were to (1 document changes in the areal extent and connectivity of grasslands in the identified lesser prairie-chicken range in Kansas, USA, (>60% of extant lesser prairie-chicken population from the 1950s to 2013 using remotely sensed data and (2 assess the potential of the Conservation Reserve Program (U.S. Department of Agriculture Program converting cropland to permanent cover; CRP to mitigate grassland loss. Digital land cover maps were generated on a decadal time step through spectral classification of LANDSAT images and visual analysis of aerial photographs (1950s and 1960s. Landscape composition and configuration were assessed using FRAGSTATS to compute a variety of landscape metrics measuring changes in the amount of grassland present as well as changes in the size and configuration of grassland patches. With the exception of a single regional portion of the range, nearly all of the grassland converted to cropland in the lesser prairie-chicken range of Kansas occurred prior to the 1950s. Prior to the implementation of CRP, the amount of grassland decreased 3.6% between the 1950s and 1985 from 18,455 km2 to 17,788 km2. Since 1985, the overall amount of grassland in the lesser prairie-chicken range has increased 11.9% to 19,898 km2 due to implementation of CRP, although the area of grassland decreased between 1994 and 2013 as CRP contracts were not renewed by landowners. Since 1986 grassland in Kansas became more connected and less fragmented in response to the CRP. While the CRP has been successful

  11. Social transfer of alcohol withdrawal-induced hyperalgesia in female prairie voles. (United States)

    Walcott, Andre T; Smith, Monique L; Loftis, Jennifer M; Ryabinin, Andrey E


    The expression of pain serves as a way for animals to communicate potential dangers to nearby conspecifics. Recent research demonstrated that mice undergoing alcohol or morphine withdrawal, or inflammation, could socially communicate their hyperalgesia to nearby mice. However, it is unknown whether such social transfer of hyperalgesia can be observed in other species of rodents. Therefore, the present study investigated if the social transfer of hyperalgesia occurs in the highly social prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster). We observe that adult female prairie voles undergoing withdrawal from voluntary two-bottle choice alcohol drinking display an increase in nociception. This alcohol withdrawal-induced hypersensitiity is socially transferred to female siblings within the same cage and female strangers housed in separate cages within the same room. These experiments reveal that the social transfer of pain phenomenon is not specific to inbred mouse strains and that prairie voles display alcohol withdrawal and social transfer-induced hyperalgesia.

  12. Magnetic minerals in soils across the forest-prairie ecotone in NW Minnesota (United States)

    Maxbauer, D.; Feinberg, J. M.; Fox, D. L.; Nater, E. A.


    Soil pedogenesis results in a complex assemblage of iron oxide minerals that can be disentangled successfully using sensitive magnetic techniques to better delineate specific soil processes. Here, we evaluate the variability in soil processes within forest, prairie, and transitional soils along an 11 km transect of anthropogenically unaltered soils that span the forest-to-prairie ecotone in NW Minnesota. All soils in this study developed on relatively uniform topography, similar glacial till parent material, under a uniform climate, and presumably over similar time intervals. The forest-to-prairie transition zone in this region is controlled by naturally occurring fires, affording the opportunity to evaluate differences in soil processes related to vegetation (forest versus prairie) and burning (prairie and transitional soils). Results suggest that the pedeogenic fraction of magnetite/maghemite in soils is similar in all specimens and is independent of soil type, vegetation, and any effects of burning. Magnetically enhanced horizons have 45% of remanence held by a low-coercivity pedogenic component (likely magnetite/maghemite) regardless of vegetation cover and soil type. Enhancement ratios for magnetic susceptibility and low-field remanences, often used as indicators of pedogenic magnetic minerals, are more variable but remain statistically equivalent across the transect. These results support the hypothesis that pedogenic magnetic minerals in soils mostly reflect ambient climatic conditions regardless of the variability in soil processes related to vegetation and soil type. The non-pedogenic magnetic mineral assemblage shows clear distinctions between the forest, prairie, and transitional soils in hysteresis properties (remanence and coercivity ratios; Mr/Ms and Bc/Bcr, respectively), suggesting that variable processes in these settings influence the local magnetic mineral assemblage, and that it may be possible to use magnetic minerals in paleosols to constrain

  13. Landscape composition creates a threshold influencing Lesser Prairie-Chicken population resilience to extreme drought (United States)

    Ross, Beth E.; Haukos, David A.; Hagen, Christian A.; Pitman, James C.


    Habitat loss and degradation compound the effects of climate change on wildlife, yet responses to climate and land cover change are often quantified independently. The interaction between climate and land cover change could be intensified in the Great Plains region where grasslands are being converted to row-crop agriculture concurrent with increased frequency of extreme drought events. We quantified the combined effects of land cover and climate change on a species of conservation concern in the Great Plains, the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus  ). We combined extreme drought events and land cover change with lek count surveys in a Bayesian hierarchical model to quantify changes in abundance of male Lesser Prairie-Chickens from 1978 to 2014 in Kansas, the core of their species range. Our estimates of abundance indicate a gradually decreasing population through 2010 corresponding to drought events and reduced grassland areas. Decreases in Lesser Prairie-Chicken abundance were greatest in areas with increasing row-crop to grassland land cover ratio during extreme drought events, and decreased grassland reduces the resilience of Lesser Prairie-Chicken populations to extreme drought events. A threshold exists for Lesser Prairie-Chickens in response to the gradient of cropland:grassland land cover. When moving across the gradient of grassland to cropland, abundance initially increased in response to more cropland on the landscape, but declined in response to more cropland after the threshold (δ=0.096, or 9.6% cropland). Preservation of intact grasslands and continued implementation of initiatives to revert cropland to grassland should increase Lesser Prairie-Chicken resilience to extreme drought events due to climate change.

  14. National Uranium Resource Evaluation: Lawton Quadrangle, Oklahoma and Texas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Shaieb, Z.; Thomas, R.G.; Stewart, G.F.


    Uranium resources of the Lawton Quadrangle, Oklahoma and Texas, were evaluated to a depth of 1500 m using National Uranium Resource Evaluation criteria. Five areas of uranium favorability were delineated. Diagenetically altered, quartzose and sublithic, eolian and marginal-marine sandstones of the Permian Rush Springs Formation overlying the Cement Anticline are favorable for joint-controlled deposits in sandstone, non-channel-controlled peneconcordant deposits, and Texas roll-front deposits. Three areas contain lithologies favorable for channel-controlled peneconcordant deposits: arkosic sandstones and granule conglomerates of the Permian Post Oak Conglomerate south of the Wichita Mountains; subarkosic and sublithic Lower Permian fluvio-deltaic and coastal-plain sandstones of the eastern Red River Valley; and subsurface arkosic, subarkosic, and sublithic alluvial-fan and fan-delta sandstones of the Upper Pennsylvanian-Lower Permian sequence in the eastern Hollis Basin. The coarse-grained facies of the Cambrian Quanah Granite and genetically related aplite and pegmatite dikes in the Wichita Mountains are favorable for orthomagmatic and autometasomatic deposits, respectively


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohan Kelkar


    Hunton formation in Oklahoma has displayed some unique production characteristics. These include high initial water-oil and gas-oil ratios, decline in those ratios over time and temporary increase in gas-oil ratio during pressure build up. The formation also displays highly complex geology, but surprising hydrodynamic continuity. This report addresses three key issues related specifically to West Carney Hunton field and, in general, to any other Hunton formation exhibiting similar behavior: (1) What is the primary mechanism by which oil and gas is produced from the field? (2) How can the knowledge gained from studying the existing fields can be extended to other fields which have the potential to produce? (3) What can be done to improve the performance of this reservoir? We have developed a comprehensive model to explain the behavior of the reservoir. By using available production, geological, core and log data, we are able to develop a reservoir model which explains the production behavior in the reservoir. Using easily available information, such as log data, we have established the parameters needed for a field to be economically successful. We provide guidelines in terms of what to look for in a new field and how to develop it. Finally, through laboratory experiments, we show that surfactants can be used to improve the hydrocarbons recovery from the field. In addition, injection of CO{sub 2} or natural gas also will help us recover additional oil from the field.

  16. Oklahoma Cherokee formation study shows benefits of gas tax credits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stanley, B.J.; Cline, S.B.


    To no one's surprise, the administration's recently released energy initiative package does not advocate the use of tax incentives such as the Internal Revenue Code Sec. 29 (tight sand gas) credit that expired Dec. 31, 1992. This is unfortunate since tax credits do stimulate drilling, as the authors' recent study of Oklahoma's Pennsylvanian age Cherokee formation demonstrates. Within this 783,000 acre study area, more than 130 additional wells were drilled between 1991--92 because of tax credit incentives. And such tax credits also increase total federal tax revenues by causing wells to be drilled that would not have been drilled or accelerating the drilling of wells, thereby increasing taxable revenue. In short, tax credits create a win-win situation: they stimulate commerce, increase tax revenues, reduce the outflow of capital to foreign petroleum projects, and add to the nation's natural gas reserve, which is beneficial for national security, balance of payments, the environment, and gas market development. The paper discusses the study assumptions, study results, and the tax credit policy

  17. Legume Genome Initiative at the University of Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruce A. Roe


    Consolidated Appropriations Resolution, 2003 Conference Report for the Department of Energy's Biological and Environmental Research (BER) program provided $481,000 for the Legume Genome Initiative at the University of Oklahoma. These funds were used to support our research that is aimed at determining the entire sequence of the gene rich regions of the genome of the legume, Medicago truncatula, by allowing us to obtain a greater degree of finished BAC sequences from the draft sequences we have already obtained through research funded by the Noble Foundation. During the funding period we increased the number of Medicago truncatula BACs with finished (Bermuda standard) sequences from 109 to 359, and the total number of BACs for which we collected sequence data from 584 to 842, 359 of which reached phase 2 (ordered and oriented contigs). We also sequenced a series of pooled BAC clones that cover additional euchromatic (gene rich) genomic regions. This work resulted in 6 refereed publications, see below. Genes whose sequence was determined during this study included multiple members of the plant disease resistance (R-gene) family as well as several genes involved in flavinoid biosynthesis, nitrogen fixation and plant-microbial symbosis. This work also served as a prelude to obtaining NSF funding for the international collaborative effort to complete the entire sequence of the Medicago truncatula genomic euchromatic regions using a BAC based approach.

  18. National Uranium Resource Evaluation: Wichita Falls Quadrangle, Texas and Oklahoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, M.B.; Andersen, R.L.


    The uranium favorability of the Wichita Falls Quadrangle, Texas and Oklahoma, was determined by using National Uranium Resource Evaluation criteria; by subsurface studies of structure, facies distribution, and gamma-ray anomalies in well logs to a depth of 1500 m; and by surface studies involving extensive field sampling and radiometric surveying. These were supplemented by both aerial radiometric and hydrogeochemical and stream-sediment reconnaissance studies. Favorable environments were identified in fluviodeltaic to fan-delta sandstones in the upper Strawn, Canyon, and Cisco Groups (Pennsylvania to Lower Permian), which occur exclusively in the subsurface. Evaluation was based on the presence of a good uranium source, abundant feldspar, good hydrogeologic characteristics, association with carbonaceous shales, presence of coal and oil fields, and anomalies in gamma logs. Additional favorable environments include deltaic to alluvial sandstones in the Wichita-Albany Group (Lower Permian), which crops out widely and occurs in the shallow subsurface. Evaluation was based on high uranium values in stream-sediment samples, a small uranium occurrence located during the field survey, anomalous gamma logs, good uranium source, and hydrogeologic characteristics. Unfavorable environments include Cambrian to Permian limestones and shales. Pennsylvanian to Permian fluviodeltaic systems that have poor uranium sources, and Permian, Cretaceous, and Pleistocene formations that lack features characteristic of known uranium occurrences

  19. Impact of Prairie Cover on Hydraulic Conductivity and Storm Water Runoff (United States)

    Herkes, D. M. G.; Gori, A.; Juan, A.


    Houston has long struggled to find effective solutions to its historic flooding problems. Conventional strategies have revolved around constructing hard infrastructure such as levees or regional detention ponds to reduce flood impacts. However, there has been a recent shift to explore the implementation of nature-based solutions in reducing flood impacts. This is due to the price of structural mechanisms, as well as their failure to adequately protect areas from flooding during the latest flood events. One alternative could be utilizing the natural water retention abilities of native Texas prairies. This study examines the effect of Texas prairie areas in increasing soil infiltration capacities, thereby increasing floodwater storage and reducing surface runoff. For this purpose, an infiltration study of 15 sites was conducted on lands owned by the Katy Prairie Conservancy within Cypress Creek watershed. Located in Northwest Houston, it is an area which had been heavily impacted by recent flood events. Each sampling site was selected to represent a particular land cover or vegetation type, ranging from developed open space to native prairies. Field test results are then compared to literature values of soil infiltration capacity in order to determine the infiltration benefit of each vegetation type. Test results show that certain vegetation, especially prairies, significantly increase the infiltration capacity of the underlying soil. For example, the hydraulic conductivity of prairie on sandy loam soil is approximately an order of magnitude higher than that of the soil itself. Finally, a physics-based hydrologic model is utilized to evaluate the flood reduction potential of native Texas prairie. This model represents Cypress Creek watershed in gridded cell format, and allows varying hydraulic and infiltration parameters at each cell. Design storms are run to obtain flow hydrographs for selected watch points in the study area. Two scenarios are simulated and compared

  20. Field-level financial assessment of contour prairie strips for enhancement of environmental quality. (United States)

    Tyndall, John C; Schulte, Lisa A; Liebman, Matthew; Helmers, Matthew


    The impacts of strategically located contour prairie strips on sediment and nutrient runoff export from watersheds maintained under an annual row crop production system have been studied at a long-term research site in central Iowa. Data from 2007 to 2011 indicate that the contour prairie strips utilized within row crop-dominated landscapes have greater than proportionate and positive effects on the functioning of biophysical systems. Crop producers and land management agencies require comprehensive information about the Best Management Practices with regard to performance efficacy, operational/management parameters, and the full range of financial parameters. Here, a farm-level financial model assesses the establishment, management, and opportunity costs of contour prairie strips within cropped fields. Annualized, depending on variable opportunity costs the 15-year present value cost of utilizing contour prairie strips ranges from $590 to $865 ha(-1) year(-1) ($240-$350 ac(-1) year(-1)). Expressed in the context of "treatment area" (e.g., in this study 1 ha of prairie treats 10 ha of crops), the costs of contour prairie strips can also be viewed as $59 to about $87 per treated hectare ($24-$35 ac(-1)). If prairie strips were under a 15-year CRP contract, total per acre cost to farmers would be reduced by over 85 %. Based on sediment, phosphorus, and nitrogen export data from the related field studies and across low, medium, and high land rent scenarios, a megagram (Mg) of soil retained within the watershed costs between $7.79 and $11.46 mg(-1), phosphorus retained costs between $6.97 and $10.25 kg(-1), and nitrogen retained costs between $1.59 and $2.34 kg(-1). Based on overall project results, contour prairie strips may well become one of the key conservation practices used to sustain US Corn Belt agriculture in the decades to come.

  1. The Then and Now of Reference Conditions in Streams of the Central Plains (United States)

    Huggins, D.; Angelo, R.; Baker, D. S.; Welker, G.


    Models of contemporary and pre-settlement reference conditions were constructed for streams that once drained the tallgrass prairies of Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri (e.g. Western Corn Belt Plains ecoregion), and for streams within the heart of the mixed grass prairie (e.g. Southwestern Tablelands ecoregion). Data on watershed, habitat, chemistry and biology compiled for existing reference streams (least or minimally impacted systems) were used to characterize contemporary reference conditions. Contemporary reference conditions within these two prairie regions are contrasted against hypothetical pre-settlement conditions using information from the best streams (upper 25%) of the current reference population, historical accounts, museum records, natural heritage programs, Public Land Survey and current remote sensing data. Similar comparisons were made between historical and current reference conditions for the Southwestern Tablelands located in central Kansas and Oklahoma. Much of this region remains in mixed grass prairie; has limited hydrological alterations (e.g. impoundments, dewatering) and low human and livestock densities. Within the tablelands these factors have preserved reference conditions that resemble historic conditions. Qualitative and quantitative comparisons indicate that many regions within the Central Plains require caution when using "least disturbed" reference streams and conditions to identify regional biological integrity goals relative to the Clean Water Act.

  2. 76 FR 13271 - DeQueen and Eastern Railroad, LLC-Corporate Family Transaction Exemption-Texas, Oklahoma... (United States)


    ... Eastern Railroad, LLC--Corporate Family Transaction Exemption--Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad, LLC DeQueen and Eastern Railroad, LLC (DQ&E) and Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad, LLC (TOE), have filed a... the competitive balance with carriers outside the corporate family. Under 49 U.S.C. 10502(g), the...

  3. Continuous Cropping and Moist Deep Convection on the Canadian Prairies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devon E. Worth


    Full Text Available Summerfallow is cropland that is purposely kept out of production during a growing season to conserve soil moisture. On the Canadian Prairies, a trend to continuous cropping with a reduction in summerfallow began after the summerfallow area peaked in 1976. This study examined the impact of this land-use change on convective available potential energy (CAPE, a necessary but not sufficient condition for moist deep convection. All else being equal, an increase in CAPE increases the probability-of-occurrence of convective clouds and their intensity if they occur. Representative Bowen ratios for the Black, Dark Brown, and Brown soil zones were determined for 1976: the maximum summerfallow year, 2001: our baseline year, and 20xx: a hypothetical year with the maximum-possible annual crop area. Average mid-growing-season Bowen ratios and noon solar radiation were used to estimate the reduction in the lifted index (LI from land-use weighted evapotranspiration in each study year. LI is an index of CAPE, and a reduction in LI indicates an increase in CAPE. The largest reductions in LI were found for the Black soil zone. They were −1.61 ± 0.18, −1.77 ± 0.14 and −1.89 ± 0.16 in 1976, 2001 and 20xx, respectively. These results suggest that, all else being equal, the probability-of-occurrence of moist deep convection in the Black soil zone was lower in 1976 than in the base year 2001, and it will be higher in 20xx when the annual crop area reaches a maximum. The trend to continuous cropping had less impact in the drier Dark Brown and Brown soil zones.

  4. The scale dependence of optical diversity in a prairie ecosystem (United States)

    Gamon, J. A.; Wang, R.; Stilwell, A.; Zygielbaum, A. I.; Cavender-Bares, J.; Townsend, P. A.


    Biodiversity loss, one of the most crucial challenges of our time, endangers ecosystem services that maintain human wellbeing. Traditional methods of measuring biodiversity require extensive and costly field sampling by biologists with extensive experience in species identification. Remote sensing can be used for such assessment based upon patterns of optical variation. This provides efficient and cost-effective means to determine ecosystem diversity at different scales and over large areas. Sampling scale has been described as a "fundamental conceptual problem" in ecology, and is an important practical consideration in both remote sensing and traditional biodiversity studies. On the one hand, with decreasing spatial and spectral resolution, the differences among different optical types may become weak or even disappear. Alternately, high spatial and/or spectral resolution may introduce redundant or contradictory information. For example, at high resolution, the variation within optical types (e.g., between leaves on a single plant canopy) may add complexity unrelated to specie richness. We studied the scale-dependence of optical diversity in a prairie ecosystem at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, Minnesota, USA using a variety of spectrometers from several platforms on the ground and in the air. Using the coefficient of variation (CV) of spectra as an indicator of optical diversity, we found that high richness plots generally have a higher coefficient of variation. High resolution imaging spectrometer data (1 mm pixels) showed the highest sensitivity to richness level. With decreasing spatial resolution, the difference in CV between richness levels decreased, but remained significant. These findings can be used to guide airborne studies of biodiversity and develop more effective large-scale biodiversity sampling methods.

  5. The Impact of the Urban Heat Island during an Intense Heat Wave in Oklahoma City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey B. Basara


    Full Text Available During late July and early August 2008, an intense heat wave occurred in Oklahoma City. To quantify the impact of the urban heat island (UHI in Oklahoma City on observed and apparent temperature conditions during the heat wave event, this study used observations from 46 locations in and around Oklahoma City. The methodology utilized composite values of atmospheric conditions for three primary categories defined by population and general land use: rural, suburban, and urban. The results of the analyses demonstrated that a consistent UHI existed during the study period whereby the composite temperature values within the urban core were approximately 0.5∘C warmer during the day than the rural areas and over 2∘C warmer at night. Further, when the warmer temperatures were combined with ambient humidity conditions, the composite values consistently revealed even warmer heat-related variables within the urban environment as compared with the rural zone.

  6. Native American Conference on Petroleum Energy; November 16-17, 1996; Bartlesville, Oklahoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    Thirty-three Native American tribal members, council members, and other interested parties gathered in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, to attend the Native American Conference on Petroleum Energy on October 16 and 17 1996, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and BDM-Oklahoma, Inc. Tribes represented at the workshop included the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Hopi, Jicarilla Apache, Osage, Seminole, and Ute. Representatives of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and the Minerals Management Service (MMS) also attended. BDM-Oklahoma developed and organized the Native American Conference on Petroleum Energy to help meet the goals of the U.S. Department of Energy's Domestic Gas and Oil Initiative to help Native American Tribes become more self-sufficient in developing and managing petroleum resources.

  7. Interactions among American badgers, black-footed ferrets, and prairie dogs in the grasslands of western North America (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Biggins, Dean E.; Grassel, Shaun M.; Livieri, Travis M.; Licht, Daniel S.; Proulx, Gilbert; Do Linh San, Emmanuel


    American badgers (Taxidea taxus) and black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes) sometimes occur sympatrically within colonies of prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) in the grasslands of western North America. From the perspective of a simplified food web, badgers are consumers of ferrets and, to a greater extent, prairie dogs; ferrets are specialized consumers of prairie dogs; and prairie dogs are consumers of vegetation. We review information on the predatory behaviours of badgers, which collectively demonstrate that badgers exhibit complex hunting strategies to improve their probability of capturing prairie dogs and, perhaps, ferrets. We also review studies of interactions between badgers and ferrets, which suggest that there is selective pressure on badgers to compete with ferrets, and pressure on ferrets to compete with and avoid badgers. We then speculate as to how prairie dogs might shape interactions between badgers and ferrets, and how badgers could spread the plague bacterium (Yersinia pestis) among prairie dog colonies. Lastly, we provide recommendations for research on this tractable system of semi-fossorial predators and prey.

  8. Employment Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People in Oklahoma


    Mallory, Christy; Herman, Jody L.; Badgett, M.V. Lee


    This report analyzes evidence of employment discrimination against LGBT people in Oklahoma, and asses the impact of adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the state’s non-discrimination law.  We find that LGBT people in Oklahoma face discrimination in the workplace, including lower wages. Evidence also shows that a sexual orientation and gender identity non-discrimination law may have a positive impact on businesses in the state, and will not overwhelm state enforcement agencies or ...

  9. Investigation of the Meers fault in southwestern Oklahoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Luza, K.V.; Madole, R.F.; Crone, A.J.


    The Meers fault is part of a major system of NW-trending faults that form the boundary between the Wichita Mountains and the Anadarko basin in southwestern Oklahoma. A portion of the Meers fault is exposed at the surface in northern Comanche County and strikes approximately N. 60 0 W. where it offsets Permian conglomerate and shale for at least 26 km. The scarp on the fault is consistently down to the south, with a maximum relief of 5 m near the center of the fault trace. Quaternary stratigraphic relationships and 10 14 C age dates constrain the age of the last movement of the Meers fault. The last movement postdates the Browns Creek Alluvium, late Pleistocene to early Holocene, and predates the East Cache Alluvium, 100 to 800 yr B.P. Fan alluvium, produced by the last fault movement, buried a soil that dates between 1400 and 1100 yr B.P. Two trenches excavated across the scarp near Canyon Creek document the near-surface deformation and provide some general information on recurrence. Trench 1 was excavated in the lower Holocene part of the Browns Creek Alluvium, and trench 2 was excavated in unnamed gravels thought to be upper Pleistocene. Flexing and warping was the dominant mode of deformation that produced the scarp. The stratigraphy in both trenches indicates one surface-faulting event, which implies a lengthy recurrence interval for surface faulting on this part of the fault. Organic-rich material from two samples that postdate the last fault movement yielded 14 C ages between 1600 and 1300 yr B.P. These dates are in excellent agreement with the dates obtained from soils buried by the fault-related fan alluvium


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohan Kelkar


    West Carney field--one of the newest fields discovered in Oklahoma--exhibits many unique production characteristics. These characteristics include: (1) decreasing water-oil ratio; (2) decreasing gas-oil ratio followed by an increase; (3) poor prediction capability of the reserves based on the log data; and (4) low geological connectivity but high hydrodynamic connectivity. The purpose of this investigation is to understand the principal mechanisms affecting the production, and propose methods by which we can extend the phenomenon to other fields with similar characteristics. In our experimental investigation section, we present the data on surfactant injection in near well bore region. We demonstrate that by injecting the surfactant, the relative permeability of water could be decreased, and that of gas could be increased. This should result in improved gas recovery from the reservoir. Our geological analysis of the reservoir develops the detailed stratigraphic description of the reservoir. Two new stratigraphic units, previously unrecognized, are identified. Additional lithofacies are recognized in new core descriptions. Our engineering analysis has determined that well density is an important parameter in optimally producing Hunton reservoirs. It appears that 160 acre is an optimal spacing. The reservoir pressure appears to decline over time; however, recovery per well is only weakly influenced by the pressure. This indicates that additional opportunity to drill wells exists in relatively depleted fields. A simple material balance technique is developed to validate the recovery of gas, oil and water. This technique can be used to further extrapolate recoveries from other fields with similar field characteristics.

  11. Midcontinent Prairie-Pothole wetlands and climate change: An Introduction to the Supplemental Issue (United States)

    Mushet, David M.


    The multitude of wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region of North America forms one of Earth’s largest wetland complexes. The midcontinent location exposes this ecologically and economically important wetland system to a highly variable climate, markedly influencing ponded-water levels, hydroperiods, chemical characteristics, and biota of individual basins. Given their dominance on the landscape and recognized value, great interest in how projected future changes in climate will affect prairie-pothole wetlands has developed and spawned much scientific research. On June 2, 2015, a special symposium, “Midcontinent Prairie-Pothole Wetlands: Influence of a Changed Climate,” was held at the annual meeting of the Society of Wetland Scientists in Providence, Rhode Island, USA. The symposium’s twelve presenters covered a wide range of relevant topics delivered to a standing-room-only audience. Following the symposium, the presenters recognized the need to publish their presented papers as a combined product to facilitate widespread distribution. The need for additional papers to more fully cover the topic of prairie-pothole wetlands and climate change was also identified. This supplemental issue of Wetlands is the realization of that vision.

  12. Status of black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) in Sonora, Mexico (United States)

    Reyna A. Castillo-Gamez; Rafael Arenas-Wong; Luis Castillo-Quijada; Verónica Coronado-Peraza; Abigail Enríquez-Munguia; Mirna Federico-Ortega; Alejandra García-Urrutia; Alba Lozano-Gámez; Romeo Méndez-Estrella; Laura Ochoa-Figueroa; J. R. Romo-León; Guy Kruse-Llergo; Iván Parra-Salazar


    Prairie dog is a keystone species throughout the habitat where it occurs, but its populations have declined about 98% in the last century. This species has been considered of international importance for the United States of America, Canada, and Mexico. Only two populations are recorded for Mexico, and the westernmost (isolated by Sierra Madre...

  13. Testing for thresholds in a semiarid grassland: The influence of prairie dogs and plague (United States)

    State and transition models for semiarid grasslands in the Great Plains of North America suggest that the presence of herbivorous black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) on a site (1) creates a vegetation state characterized by increased dominance of annual forbs and unpalatable bunchgrasse...

  14. Rainwater deficit and irrigation demand for row crops in Mississippi Blackland Prairie (United States)

    Gary Feng; Ying Ouyang; Ardeshir Adeli; John Read; Johnie Jenkins


    Irrigation research in the mid-south United States has not kept pace with a steady increase in irrigated area in recent years. This study used rainfall records from 1895 to 2016 to determine rainwater deficit and irrigation demand for soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.], corn (Zea mays L.), and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) in the Blackland Prairie region of Mississippi...

  15. Spread of plague among black-tailed prairie dogs is associated with colony spatial characteristics (United States)

    Johnson, T.L.; Cully, J.F.; Collinge, S.K.; Ray, C.; Frey, C.M.; Sandercock, B.K.


    Sylvatic plague (Yersinia pestis) is an exotic pathogen that is highly virulent in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) and causes widespread colony losses and individual mortality rates >95%. We investigated colony spatial characteristics that may influence inter-colony transmission of plague at 3 prairie dog colony complexes in the Great Plains. The 4 spatial characteristics we considered include: colony size, Euclidean distance to nearest neighboring colony, colony proximity index, and distance to nearest drainage (dispersal) corridor. We used multi-state mark-recapture models to determine the relationship between these colony characteristics and probability of plague transmission among prairie dog colonies. Annual mapping of colonies and mark-recapture analyses of disease dynamics in natural colonies led to 4 main results: 1) plague outbreaks exhibited high spatial and temporal variation, 2) the site of initiation of epizootic plague may have substantially influenced the subsequent inter-colony spread of plague, 3) the long-term effect of plague on individual colonies differed among sites because of how individuals and colonies were distributed, and 4) colony spatial characteristics were related to the probability of infection at all sites although the relative importance and direction of relationships varied among sites. Our findings suggest that conventional prairie dog conservation management strategies, including promoting large, highly connected colonies, may need to be altered in the presence of plague. ?? 2011 The Wildlife Society.

  16. Vegetation dynamics of restored and remnant Willamette Valley, OR wet prairie wetlands (United States)

    Wet prairie wetlands are now one of the rarest habitat types in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, USA. Less than two percent of their historic extent remains, with most having been converted into agricultural fields (Christy and Alverson 2011, ONHP 1983). This habitat is the obl...

  17. Sediment removal by prairie filter strips in row-cropped ephemeral watersheds (United States)

    Matthew J. Helmers; Xiaobo Zhou; Heidi Asbjornsen; Randy Kolka; Mark D. Tomer; Richard M. Cruse


    Twelve small watersheds in central Iowa were used to evaluate the eff ectiveness of prairie filter strips (PFS) in trapping sediment from agricultural runoff. Four treatments with PFS of different size and location (100% rowcrop, 10% PFS of total watershed area at footslope, 10% PFS at footslope and in contour strips, 20% PFS at footslope and in contour strips)...

  18. Effects of wind energy development on nesting ecology of greater prairie-chickens in fragmented grasslands. (United States)

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K


    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before-after control-impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = -1.2-1.3) or nest survival (β = -0.3, 95% CI = -0.6-0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. © 2014 The Authors. Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.

  19. Restoring sand shinnery oak prairies with herbicide and grazing in New Mexico (United States)

    Zavaleta, Jennifer C.; Haukos, David A.; Grisham, Blake A.; Boal, Clint W.; Dixon, Charles


    Sand shinnery oak (Quercus havardii) prairies are increasingly disappearing and increasingly degraded in the Southern High Plains of Texas and New Mexico. Restoring and managing sand shinnery oak prairie can support biodiversity, specific species of conservation concern, and livestock production. We measured vegetation response to four treatment combinations of herbicide (tebuthiuron applied at 0.60 kg/ha) and moderate-intensity grazing (50% removal of annual herbaceous production) over a 10-year period in a sand shinnery oak prairie of eastern New Mexico. We compared the annual vegetation response to the historical climax plant community (HCPC) as outlined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Ecological Site Description. From 2 to 10 years postapplication, tebuthiuron-treated plots had reduced shrub cover with twice as much forb and grass cover as untreated plots. Tebuthiuron-treated plots, regardless of the presence of grazing, most frequently met HCPC. Tebuthiuron and moderate-intensity grazing increased vegetation heterogeneity and, based on comparison of the HCPC, successfully restored sand shinnery oak prairie to a vegetation composition similar to presettlement.

  20. Raptor community composition in the Texas Southern High Plains lesser prairie-chicken range (United States)

    Behney, A.C.; Boal, Clint W.; Whitlaw, Heather A.; Lucia, D.R.


    Predation can be a factor in preventing prey population growth and sustainability when prey populations are small and fragmented, and when predator density is unrelated to the density of the single prey species. We conducted monthly raptor surveys from February 2007 to May 2009 in adjacent areas of the Texas Southern High Plains (USA) that do and do not support lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus), a candidate for protection under the Endangered Species Act. During the summer period corresponding to prairie-chicken nesting and brood-rearing, Swainson's hawks (Buteo swainsoni) were the most abundant raptor. During the lekking and overwintering period, the raptor community was diverse, with northern harriers (Circus cyaneus) being the most abundant species. Raptor abundance peaked during the early autumn and was lowest during the spring. Utility poles were a significant predictor of raptor density at survey points and Swainson's hawks and all raptors, pooled, were found in greater densities in non-prairie-chicken habitat dominated by mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa). Avian predation risk on prairie-chickens, based on presence and abundance of raptors, appears to be greatest during winter when there is a more abundant and diverse raptor community, and in areas with utility poles.

  1. Preliminary study of prairies forested with Eucalyptus sp. at the northwestern Uruguayan soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carrasco-Letelier, L.; Eguren, G.; Castineira, C.; Parra, O.; Panario, D.


    The forestation of Uruguayan natural prairie soil does not always ensure an increase of soil carbon sink. - The land cover change of Uruguayan Forestal Plan provoked biogeochemical changes on horizon Au 1 of Argiudols; in native prairies which were replaced by monoculture Eucalyptus sp. plantation with 20 year rotations as trees. Five fields forested and six natural prairies were compared. The results not only show a statistical significant soil acidification, diminution of soil organic carbon, increase of aliphaticity degree of humic substances, and increase of affinity and capacity of hydrolytic activity from soil microbial communities for forested sites with Eucalyptus sp. but also, a tendency of podzolization and/or mineralization by this kind of land cover changes, with a net soil organic lost of 16.6 tons ha -1 in the horizon Au 1 of soil under Eucalyptus sp. plantation compared with prairie. Besides, these results point out the necessity of correction of the methodology used by assigned Uruguayan commission to assess the national net emission of greenhouse gases, since the mineralization and/or podzolization process detected in forested soil imply a overestimation of soil organic carbon. The biochemical parameters show a statistical significant correlation between the soil organic carbon status and these parameters which were presented as essential for the correct evaluation of Uruguayan soil carbon sink

  2. Phenotypic and genetic characterization of western prairie clover collections from the western USA (United States)

    Kishor Bhattarai; B. Shaun Bushman; Douglas A. Johnson; John G. Carman


    Few North American legumes are available for rangeland revegetation in the semiarid western United States. Western prairie clover (Dalea ornata [Douglas ex Hook.] Eaton & J. Wright) is a perennial legume with desirable forage characteristics and is distributed in the northern Great Basin, Snake River Basin, and southern Columbia Plateau. Understanding the...

  3. Gallbladder contractility and mucus secretion after cholesterol feeding in the prairie dog

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, Y. F.; Moody, F. G.; Weisbrodt, N. W.; Zalewsky, C. A.; Coelho, J. C.; Senninger, N.; Gouma, D.


    The purpose of our study was to evaluate changes in gallbladder contractility and mucus secretion in vitro during the early stages of gallstone formation in prairie dogs. Thirty-two animals were divided into five groups. Control animals were fed a trace cholesterol diet. Experimental animals were

  4. Searls prairie clover (Dalea searlsiae) for rangeland revegetation: Phenotypic and genetic evaluations (United States)

    Kishor Bhattarai; Shaun Bushman; Douglas A. Johnson; John G. Carman


    Few North American legumes are available for use in rangeland revegetation in the western USA, but Searls prairie clover [Dalea searlsiae (A. Gray) Barneby] is one that holds promise. Commercial-scale seed production of this species could address the issues of unreliable seed availability and high seed costs associated with its wildland seed collection. To evaluate its...

  5. Sodium co-limits and catalyzes macronutrients in a prairie food web

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kaspari, Michael; Roeder, Karl A.; Benson, Brittany


    Nitrogen and phosphorus frequently limit terrestrial plant production, but have a mixed record in regulating the abundance of terrestrial invertebrates. We contrasted four ways that Na could interact with an NP fertilizer to shape the plants and invertebrates of an inland prairie. We applied NP a...

  6. Population status of prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) in the San Pedro River Basin, Sonora (United States)

    Efren Moreno-Arzate; Carlos A. Lopez Gonzalez; Gerardo Carreon Arroyo


    The black tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) is a species of conservation concern for Mexico, the United States and Canada. Populations in Mexico (including those in Sonora), which are considered endangered by the Mexican authority, require additional conservation efforts to maintain them on the long term. Our objective was to determine population size and...

  7. Interactions of raptors and Lesser Prairie-Chickens at leks in the Texas Southern High Plains (United States)

    Behney, Adam C.; Boal, Clint W.; Whitlaw, Heather A.; Lucia, Duane R.


    We examined behavioral interactions of raptors, Chihuahuan Ravens (Corvus cryptoleucus), and Lesser Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) at leks in the Texas Southern High Plains. Northern Harriers (Circus cyaneus) and Swainson's Hawks (Buteo swainsoni) were the most common raptors observed at leks. Only 15 of 61 (25%) raptor encounters at leks (0.09/hr) resulted in a capture attempt (0.02/hr). Mean (± SD) time for Lesser Prairie-Chickens to return to lekking behavior following a raptor encounter was 4.2 ± 5.5 min suggesting the disturbance had little influence on lekking behaviors. Lesser Prairie-Chickens engaged in different escape behaviors depending on raptor species and, generally, did not respond to ravens suggesting they are able to assess different predation risks. The raptors in our study area posed little predation risk to lekking prairie-chickens. Behavioral disturbance at leks appears minimal due to the lack of successful predation events, low raptor encounter rates, and short time to return to lekking behavior.

  8. Environmental Impacts of Wind Power Development on the Population Biology of Greater Prairie-Chickens

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sandercock, Brett K. [Kansas State Univ., Manhattan, KS (United States)


    This report summarizes the results of a seven-year, DOE-funded research project, conducted by researchers from Kansas State University and the National Wind Coordinating Collaborative, to assess the effects of wind energy development in Kansas on the population and reproduction of greater prairie chickens.

  9. Land use effects on pesticides in sediments of prairie pothole wetlands in North and South Dakota (United States)

    McMurry, Scott T.; Belden, Jason B.; Smith, Loren M.; Morrison, Shane A.; Daniel, Dale W.; Euliss, Betty R.; Euliss, Ned H. Jr.; Kensinger, Bart J.; Tangen, Brian


    Prairie potholes are the dominant wetland type in the intensively cultivated northern Great Plains of North America, and thus have the potential to receive pesticide runoff and drift. We examined the presence of pesticides in sediments of 151 wetlands split among the three dominant land use types, Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), cropland, and native prairie, in North and South Dakota in 2011. Herbicides (glyphosate and atrazine) and fungicides were detected regularly, with no insecticide detections. Glyphosate was the most detected pesticide, occurring in 61% of all wetlands, with atrazine in only 8% of wetlands. Pyraclostrobin was one of five fungicides detected, but the only one of significance, being detected in 31% of wetlands. Glyphosate was the only pesticide that differed by land use, with concentrations in cropland over four-times that in either native prairie or CRP, which were equal in concentration and frequency of detection. Despite examining several landscape variables, such as wetland proximity to specific crop types, watershed size, and others, land use was the best variable explaining pesticide concentrations in potholes. CRP ameliorated glyphosate in wetlands at concentrations comparable to native prairie and thereby provides another ecosystem service from this expansive program.

  10. Intrusion of soil covered uranium mill tailings by whitetail prairie dogs and Richardson's ground squirrels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shuman, R.


    The primary objective of the reclamation of uranium mill tailings is the long-term isolation of the matrial from the biosphere. Fossorial and semi-fossorial species represent a potentially disruptive influence as a result of their burrowing habits. The potential for intrusion was investigated with respect to two sciurids, the whitetail prairie dog (Cynomys leucurus) and Richardson's ground squirrel (Spermophilus richardsonii). Populations of prairie dogs were established on a control area, lacking a tailings layer, and two experimental areas, underlain by a waste layer, in southeastern Wyoming. Weekly measurements of prairie dog mound surface activities were conducted to demonstrate penetration, or lack thereof, of the tailings layer. Additionally, the impact of burrowing upon radon flux was determined. Limited penetration of the waste layer was noted after which frequency of inhabitance of the intruding burrow system declined. No significant changes in radon flux were detected. In another experiment, it was found that Richardson's ground squirrels burrowed to less extreme depths when confronted by mill tailings. Additional work at an inactive tailings pile in western Colorado revealed repeated intrusion through a shallow cover, and subsequent transport of radioactive material to the ground surface by prairie dogs. Radon flux from burrow entrances was significantly greater than that from undisturbed ground. Data suggested that textural and pH properties of tailings material may act to discourage repeated intrusion at some sites. 58 references

  11. Interannual variability in the extent of wetland-stream connectivity within the Prairie Pothole Region (United States)

    Melanie Vanderhoof; Laurie Alexander


    The degree of hydrological connectivity between wetland systems and downstream receiving waters can be expected to influence the volume and variability of stream discharge. The Prairie Pothole Region contains a high density of depressional wetland features, a consequence of glacial retreat. Spatial variability in wetland density, drainage evolution, and precipitation...

  12. Geological report on water conditions at Platt National Park, Oklahoma (United States)

    Gould, Charles Newton; Schoff, Stuart Leeson


    Platt National Park, located in southern Oklahoma, containing 842 acres, was established by Acts of Congress in 1902, 1904, and 1906. The reason for the setting aside of this area was the presence in the area of some 30 'mineral' springs, the water from which contains sulphur, bromide, salt, and other minerals, which are believed to possess medicinal qualities. For many generations the sulphur springs of the Chickasaw Nation had been known for their reputed healing qualities. It had long been the custom for families to come from considerable distances on horseback and in wagons and camp near the springs, in order to drink the water. In course of time a primitive town, known as Sulphur Springs, grew up near a group of springs known since as Pavilion Springs at the mouth of Sulphur Creek, now known as Travertine Creek. This town was still in existence at the time of my first visit to the locality in July, 1901. At this time, in company with Joseph A. Taff, of the United States Geological Survey, I spent a week riding over the country making a preliminary survey looking toward the setting aside of the area for a National Park. After the establishment of the National Park, the old town of Sulphur Springs was abandoned, and when the present boundaries of the park had been established the present town of Sulphur, now county seat of Murray County, grew up. In July 1906, on request of Superintendent Joseph F. Swords, I visited the park and made an examination of the various springs and submitted a report, dated August 15, 1906, to Secretary of the Interior E.A. Hitchcock. Copies of this report are on file in the Regional Office and at Platt National Park. In this report I set forth the approximate amount of flow of the various springs, the character of the water in each, and the conditions of the springs as of that date. I also made certain recommendations regarding proposed improvements of each spring. In this report I say: 'In the town of Sulphur, four wells have been

  13. Neonicotinoid insecticide removal by prairie strips in row-cropped watersheds with historical seed coating use (United States)

    Hladik, Michelle L.; Bradbury, Steven; Schulte, Lisa A.; Helmers, Matthew; Witte, Christopher; Kolpin, Dana W.; Garrett, Jessica D.; Harris, Mary


    Neonicotinoids are a widely used class of insecticides that are commonly applied as seed coatings for agricultural crops. Such neonicotinoid use may pose a risk to non-target insects, including pollinators and natural enemies of crop pests, and ecosystems. This study assessed neonicotinoid residues in groundwater, surface runoff water, soil, and native plants adjacent to corn and soybean crop fields with a history of being planted with neonicotinoid-treated seeds from 2008-2013. Data from six sites with the same crop management history, three with and three without in-field prairie strips, were collected in 2015-2016, 2-3 years after neonicotinoid (clothianidin and imidacloprid) seed treatments were last used. Three of the six neonicotinoids analyzed were detected in at least one environmental matrix: the two applied as seed coatings on the fields (clothianidin and imidacloprid) and another widely used neonicotinoid (thiamethoxam). Sites with prairie strips generally had lower concentrations of neonicotinoids: groundwater and footslope soil neonicotinoid concentrations were significantly lower in the sites with prairie strips than those without; mean concentrations for groundwater were 11 and 20 ng/L (p = 0.048) and <1 and 6 ng/g (p = 0.0004) for soil, respectively. Surface runoff water concentrations were not significantly (p = 0.38) different for control sites (44 ng/L) or sites with prairie strips (140 ng/L). Consistent with the decreased inputs of neonicotinoids, concentrations tended to decrease over the sampling timeframe. Two sites recorded concentration increases, however, potentially due to disturbance of previous applications or influence from nearby fields where use of seed treatments continued. There were no detections (limit of detection: 1 ng/g) of neonicotinoids in the foliage or roots of plants comprising prairie strips, indicating a low likelihood of exposure to pollinators and other insects visiting these plants following the cessation of seed

  14. Long-term lesser prairie-chicken nest ecology in response to grassland management (United States)

    Fritts, Sarah R.; Grisham, Blake A.; Haukos, David A.; Boal, Clint W.; Patten, Michael; Wolfe, Don H.; Dixon, Charles; Cox, Robert D.; Heck, Willard R.


    Long-term population and range declines from habitat loss and fragmentation caused the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) to be a species of concern throughout its range. Current lesser prairie-chicken range in New Mexico and Texas is partially restricted to sand shinnery oak (Quercus havardii; hereafter shinnery oak) prairies, on which cattle grazing is the main socioeconomic driver for private landowners. Cattle producers within shinnery oak prairies often focus land management on shrub eradication using the herbicide tebuthiuron to promote grass production for forage; however, herbicide application alone, and in combination with grazing, may affect nest site selection and nest survival of lesser prairie-chickens through the reduction of shinnery oak and native grasses. We used a controlled, paired, completely randomized design study to assess the influence of grazing and tebuthiuron application and their combined use on nest site selection and nest survival from 2001 to 2010 in Roosevelt County, New Mexico, USA at 2 spatial scales (i.e., treatment and microhabitat) in 4 treatments: tebuthiuron with grazing, tebuthiuron without grazing, no tebuthiuron with grazing, and a control of no tebuthiuron and no grazing. Grazing treatment was a short-duration system in which plots were grazed once during the dormant season and once during the growing season. Stocking rate was calculated each season based on measured forage production and applied to remove ≤25% of available herbaceous material per season. At the treatment scale, we compared nest site selection among treatments using 1-way χ2 tests and nest survival among treatments using a priori candidate nest survival models in Program MARK. At the microhabitat scale, we identified important habitat predictors of nest site selection and nest survival using logistic regression and a priori candidate nest survival models in Program MARK, respectively. Females typically used treatments as expected and

  15. Predicting Greater Prairie-Chicken Lek Site Suitability to Inform Conservation Actions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torre J Hovick

    Full Text Available The demands of a growing human population dictates that expansion of energy infrastructure, roads, and other development frequently takes place in native rangelands. Particularly, transmission lines and roads commonly divide rural landscapes and increase fragmentation. This has direct and indirect consequences on native wildlife that can be mitigated through thoughtful planning and proactive approaches to identifying areas of high conservation priority. We used nine years (2003-2011 of Greater Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido lek locations totaling 870 unique leks sites in Kansas and seven geographic information system (GIS layers describing land cover, topography, and anthropogenic structures to model habitat suitability across the state. The models obtained had low omission rates (0.81, indicating high model performance and reliability of predicted habitat suitability for Greater Prairie-Chickens. We found that elevation was the most influential in predicting lek locations, contributing three times more predictive power than any other variable. However, models were improved by the addition of land cover and anthropogenic features (transmission lines, roads, and oil and gas structures. Overall, our analysis provides a hierarchal understanding of Greater Prairie-Chicken habitat suitability that is broadly based on geomorphological features followed by land cover suitability. We found that when land features and vegetation cover are suitable for Greater Prairie-Chickens, fragmentation by anthropogenic sources such as roadways and transmission lines are a concern. Therefore, it is our recommendation that future human development in Kansas avoid areas that our models identified as highly suitable for Greater Prairie-Chickens and focus development on land cover types that are of lower conservation concern.

  16. The innate immune response may be important for surviving plague in wild Gunnison's prairie dogs (United States)

    Busch, Joseph D.; Van Andel, Roger; Stone, Nathan E.; Cobble, Kacy R.; Nottingham, Roxanne; Lee, Judy; VerSteeg, Michael; Corcoran, Jeff; Cordova, Jennifer; Van Pelt, William E.; Shuey, Megan M.; Foster, Jeffrey T.; Schupp, James M.; Beckstrom-Sternberg, Stephen; Beckstrom-Sternberg, James; Keim, Paul; Smith, Susan; Rodriguez-Ramos, Julia; Williamson, Judy L.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Wagner, David M.


    Prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) are highly susceptible to Yersinia pestis, with ≥99% mortality reported from multiple studies of plague epizootics. A colony of Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) in the Aubrey Valley (AV) of northern Arizona appears to have survived several regional epizootics of plague, whereas nearby colonies have been severely affected by Y. pestis. To examine potential mechanisms accounting for survival in the AV colony, we conducted a laboratory Y. pestis challenge experiment on 60 wild-caught prairie dogs from AV and from a nearby, large colony with frequent past outbreaks of plague, Espee (n = 30 per colony). Test animals were challenged subcutaneously with the fully virulent Y. pestis strain CO92 at three doses: 50, 5,000, and 50,000 colony-forming units (cfu); this range is lethal in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus). Contrary to our expectations, only 40% of the animals died. Although mortality trended higher in the Espee colony (50%) compared with AV (30%), the differences among infectious doses were not statistically significant. Only 39% of the survivors developed moderate to high antibody levels to Y. pestis, indicating that mechanisms other than humoral immunity are important in resistance to plague. The ratio of neutrophils to lymphocytes was not correlated with plague survival in this study. However, several immune proteins with roles in innate immunity (VCAM-1, CXCL-1, and vWF) were upregulated during plague infection and warrant further inquiry into their role for protection against this disease. These results suggest plague resistance exists in wild populations of the Gunnison's prairie dog and provide important directions for future studies.

  17. Sylvatic plague vaccine partially protects prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) in field trials (United States)

    Rocke, Tonie E.; Tripp, Daniel W.; Russell, Robin E.; Abbott, Rachel C.; Richgels, Katherine; Matchett, Marc R.; Biggins, Dean E.; Griebel, Randall; Schroeder, Greg; Grassel, Shaun M.; Pipkin, David R.; Cordova, Jennifer; Kavalunas, Adam; Maxfield, Brian; Boulerice, Jesse; Miller, Michael W.


    Sylvatic plague, caused by Yersinia pestis, frequently afflicts prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.), causing population declines and local extirpations. We tested the effectiveness of bait-delivered sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) in prairie dog colonies on 29 paired placebo and treatment plots (1–59 ha in size; average 16.9 ha) in 7 western states from 2013 to 2015. We compared relative abundance (using catch per unit effort (CPUE) as an index) and apparent survival of prairie dogs on 26 of the 29 paired plots, 12 with confirmed or suspected plague (Y. pestis positive carcasses or fleas). Even though plague mortality occurred in prairie dogs on vaccine plots, SPV treatment had an overall positive effect on CPUE in all three years, regardless of plague status. Odds of capturing a unique animal were 1.10 (95% confidence interval [C.I.] 1.02–1.19) times higher per trap day on vaccine-treated plots than placebo plots in 2013, 1.47 (95% C.I. 1.41–1.52) times higher in 2014 and 1.19 (95% C.I. 1.13–1.25) times higher in 2015. On pairs where plague occurred, odds of apparent survival were 1.76 (95% Bayesian credible interval [B.C.I.] 1.28–2.43) times higher on vaccine plots than placebo plots for adults and 2.41 (95% B.C.I. 1.72–3.38) times higher for juveniles. Our results provide evidence that consumption of vaccine-laden baits can protect prairie dogs against plague; however, further evaluation and refinement are needed to optimize SPV use as a management tool.

  18. Specificity in Sociality: Mice and Prairie Voles Exhibit Different Patterns of Peer Affiliation (United States)

    Beery, Annaliese K.; Christensen, Jennifer D; Lee, Nicole S.; Blandino, Katrina L.


    Social behavior is often described as a unified concept, but highly social (group-living) species exhibit distinct social structures and may make different social decisions. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are socially monogamous rodents that often reside in extended family groups, and exhibit robust preferences for familiar social partners (same- and opposite-sex) during extended choice tests, although short-term preferences are not known. Mice (Mus musculus) are gregarious and colonial, but in brief laboratory tests of social preference they typically prefer social novelty. This preference for novel vs. familiar peers may represent a species-specific difference in social decision-making between mice and prairie voles. However, the tests used to measure preferences in each species differ markedly in duration and degree of contact, such that the behaviors cannot be directly compared. We assessed whether social preferences for novelty or familiarity differed between mice and prairie voles of both sexes when assessed with matching protocols: the sociability/social preference test (SPT) typically used in mice (short, no direct contact), and the partner preference test (PPT) used in voles (long, direct contact). A subset of voles also underwent a PPT using barriers (long, no direct contact). In the short SPT, behavior did not differ between species. In the longer test, pronounced partner preferences emerged in prairie voles, but mice exhibited no social preferences and rarely huddled. No sex differences were evident in either test. Direct physical contact was required for partner preferences in huddling time in voles, but preference for the partner chamber was evident with or without contact. Both prairie voles and mice are social, but they exhibit important differences in the specificity and extent of their social behavior. While mice are often used to study social approach and other behaviors, voles are a more suitable species for the study of selective social

  19. Specificity in Sociality: Mice and Prairie Voles Exhibit Different Patterns of Peer Affiliation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annaliese K. Beery


    Full Text Available Social behavior is often described as a unified concept, but highly social (group-living species exhibit distinct social structures and may make different social decisions. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster are socially monogamous rodents that often reside in extended family groups, and exhibit robust preferences for familiar social partners (same- and opposite-sex during extended choice tests, although short-term preferences are not known. Mice (Mus musculus are gregarious and colonial, but in brief laboratory tests of social preference they typically prefer social novelty. This preference for novel vs. familiar peers may represent a species-specific difference in social decision-making between mice and prairie voles. However, the tests used to measure preferences in each species differ markedly in duration and degree of contact, such that the behaviors cannot be directly compared. We assessed whether social preferences for novelty or familiarity differed between mice and prairie voles of both sexes when assessed with matching protocols: the sociability/social preference test (SPT typically used in mice (short, no direct contact, and the partner preference test (PPT used in voles (long, direct contact. A subset of voles also underwent a PPT using barriers (long, no direct contact. In the short SPT, behavior did not differ between species. In the longer test, pronounced partner preferences emerged in prairie voles, but mice exhibited no social preferences and rarely huddled. No sex differences were evident in either test. Direct physical contact was required for partner preferences in huddling time in voles, but preference for the partner chamber was evident with or without contact. Both prairie voles and mice are social, but they exhibit important differences in the specificity and extent of their social behavior. While mice are often used to study social approach and other behaviors, voles are a more suitable species for the study of

  20. Lesser prairie-chicken fence collision risk across its northern distribution (United States)

    Robinson, Samantha G.; Haukos, David A.; Plumb, Reid T.; Hagen, Christian A.; Pitman, James C.; Lautenbach, Joseph M.; Sullins, Daniel S.; Kraft, John D.; Lautenbach, Jonathan D.


    Livestock fences have been hypothesized to significantly contribute to mortality of lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus); however, quantification of mortality due to fence collisions is lacking across their current distribution. Variation in fence density, landscape composition and configuration, and land use could influence collision risk of lesser prairie-chickens. We monitored fences within 3 km of known leks during spring and fall and surveyed for signs of collision occurrence within 20 m of fences in 6 study sites in Kansas and Colorado, USA during 2013 and 2014. We assessed mortality locations of radio-tagged birds (n = 286) for evidence of fence collisions and compared distance to fence relative to random points. Additionally, we quantified locations, propensity, and frequency of fences crossed by lesser prairie-chickens. We tested for landscape and vegetative characteristics that influenced fence-cross propensity and frequency of global positioning system (GPS)-marked birds. A minimum of 12,706 fence crossings occurred by GPS-marked lesser prairie-chickens. We found 3 carcasses and 12 additional possible instances of evidence of collision during >2,800 km of surveyed fences. We found evidence for a single suspected collision based on carcass evidence for 148 mortalities of transmittered birds. Mortality locations of transmittered birds were located at distances from fences 15% farther than expected at random. Our data suggested minimal biological significance and indicated that propensity and frequency of fence crossings were random processes. Lesser prairie-chickens do not appear to be experiencing significant mortality risk due to fence collisions in Kansas and Colorado. Focusing resources on other limiting factors (i.e., habitat quality) has greater potential for impact on population demography than fence marking and removal.

  1. The predicted influence of climate change on lesser prairie-chicken reproductive parameters (United States)

    Grisham, Blake A.; Boal, Clint W.; Haukos, David A.; Davis, D.; Boydston, Kathy K.; Dixon, Charles; Heck, Willard R.


    The Southern High Plains is anticipated to experience significant changes in temperature and precipitation due to climate change. These changes may influence the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) in positive or negative ways. We assessed the potential changes in clutch size, incubation start date, and nest survival for lesser prairie-chickens for the years 2050 and 2080 based on modeled predictions of climate change and reproductive data for lesser prairie-chickens from 2001-2011 on the Southern High Plains of Texas and New Mexico. We developed 9 a priori models to assess the relationship between reproductive parameters and biologically relevant weather conditions. We selected weather variable(s) with the most model support and then obtained future predicted values from We conducted 1,000 simulations using each reproductive parameter's linear equation obtained from regression calculations, and the future predicted value for each weather variable to predict future reproductive parameter values for lesser prairie-chickens. There was a high degree of model uncertainty for each reproductive value. Winter temperature had the greatest effect size for all three parameters, suggesting a negative relationship between above-average winter temperature and reproductive output. The above-average winter temperatures are correlated to La Nina events, which negatively affect lesser prairie-chickens through resulting drought conditions. By 2050 and 2080, nest survival was predicted to be below levels considered viable for population persistence; however, our assessment did not consider annual survival of adults, chick survival, or the positive benefit of habitat management and conservation, which may ultimately offset the potentially negative effect of drought on nest survival.

  2. Canola Root–Associated Microbiomes in the Canadian Prairies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chih-Ying Lay


    Full Text Available Canola is one of the most economically important crops in Canada, and the root and rhizosphere microbiomes of a canola plant likely impact its growth and nutrient uptake. The aim of this study was to determine whether canola has a core root microbiome (i.e., set of microbes that are consistently selected in the root environment, and whether this is distinct from the core microbiomes of other crops that are commonly grown in the Canadian Prairies, pea, and wheat. We also assessed whether selected agronomic treatments can modify the canola microbiome, and whether this was associated to enhanced yield. We used a field experiment with a randomized complete block design, which was repeated at three locations across the canola-growing zone of Canada. Roots and rhizosphere soil were harvested at the flowering stage of canola. We separately isolated total extractable DNA from plant roots and from adjacent rhizosphere soil, and constructed MiSeq amplicon libraries for each of 60 samples, targeting bacterial, and archaeal 16S rRNA genes and the fungal ITS region. We determined that the microbiome of the roots and rhizosphere of canola was consistently different from those of wheat and pea. These microbiomes comprise several putative plant-growth-promoting rhizobacteria, including Amycolatopsis sp., Serratia proteamaculans, Pedobacter sp., Arthrobacter sp., Stenotrophomonas sp., Fusarium merismoides, and Fusicolla sp., which correlated positively with canola yield. Crop species had a significant influence on bacterial and fungal assemblages, especially within the roots, while higher nutrient input or seeding density did not significantly alter the global composition of bacterial, fungal, or archaeal assemblages associated with canola roots. However, the relative abundance of Olpidium brassicae, a known pathogen of members of the Brassicaceae, was significantly reduced in the roots of canola planted at higher seeding density. Our results suggest that

  3. Modeling Prairie Pothole Lakes: Linking Satellite Observation and Calibration (Invited) (United States)

    Schwartz, F. W.; Liu, G.; Zhang, B.; Yu, Z.


    This paper examines the response of a complex lake wetland system to variations in climate. The focus is on the lakes and wetlands of the Missouri Coteau, which is part of the larger Prairie Pothole Region of the Central Plains of North America. Information on lake size was enumerated from satellite images, and yielded power law relationships for different hydrological conditions. More traditional lake-stage data were made available to us from the USGS Cottonwood Lake Study Site in North Dakota. A Probabilistic Hydrologic Model (PHM) was developed to simulate lake complexes comprised of tens-of-thousands or more individual closed-basin lakes and wetlands. What is new about this model is a calibration scheme that utilizes remotely-sensed data on lake area as well as stage data for individual lakes. Some ¼ million individual data points are used within a Genetic Algorithm to calibrate the model by comparing the simulated results with observed lake area-frequency power law relationships derived from Landsat images and water depths from seven individual lakes and wetlands. The simulated lake behaviors show good agreement with the observations under average, dry, and wet climatic conditions. The calibrated model is used to examine the impact of climate variability on a large lake complex in ND, in particular, the “Dust Bowl Drought” 1930s. This most famous drought of the 20th Century devastated the agricultural economy of the Great Plains with health and social impacts lingering for years afterwards. Interestingly, the drought of 1930s is unremarkable in relation to others of greater intensity and frequency before AD 1200 in the Great Plains. Major droughts and deluges have the ability to create marked variability of the power law function (e.g. up to one and a half orders of magnitude variability from the extreme Dust Bowl Drought to the extreme 1993-2001 deluge). This new probabilistic modeling approach provides a novel tool to examine the response of the

  4. Global warming and prairie wetlands: potential consequences for waterfowl habitat (United States)

    Poiani, Karen A.; Johnson, W. Carter


    The accumulation of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere is expected to warm the earth's climate at an unprecedented rate (Ramanathan 1988, Schneider 1989). If the climate models are correct, within 100 years the earth will not only be warmer than it has been during the past million years, but the change will have occurred more rapidly than any on record. Many profound changes in the earth's environment are expected, including rising sea level, increasing aridity in continental interiors, and melting permafrost. Ecosystems are expected to respond variously to a rapidly changing climate. Tree ranges in eastern North American are expected to shift northward, and seed dispersal may not be adequate to maintain current diversity (Cohn 1989, Johnson and Webb 1989). In coastal wetlands, rising sea level from melting icecaps and thermal expansion could flood salt-grass marshes and generally reduce the size and productivity of the intertidal zone (Peters and Darling 1985). As yet, little attention has been given to the possible effects of climatic warming on inland prairie wetland ecosystems. These wetlands, located in the glaciated portion of the North American Great Plains (Figure 1), constitute the single most important breeding area for waterfowl on this continent (Hubbard 1988). This region annually produces 50-80% of the continent's total duck production (Batt et al. 1989). These marshes also support a variety of other wildlife, including many species of nongame birds, muskrat, and mink (Kantrud et al. 1989a). Prairie wetlands are relatively shallow, water-holding depressions that vary in size, water permanence, and water chemistry. Permanence types include temporary ponds (typically holding water for a few weeks in the springs), seasonal ponds (holding water from spring until early summer), semipermanent ponds (holding water throughout the growing season during most years), and large permanent lakes (Stewart and Kantrud 1971). Refilling usually occurs in spring from

  5. Research and Monitoring Special Use Permit [Minnesota Zoo's Prairie Butterfly Conservation Program on Chase Lake National Wildlife Refuge : 2016 (United States)

    Department of the Interior — The Minnesota Zoo’s Prairie Butterfly Conservation Program partners with numerous federal, state, and local agencies to establish the world’s first and only ex situ...

  6. 77 FR 73827 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as a Threatened... (United States)


    ... the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus), a grassland bird known from southeastern... plants; wind energy development; petroleum production; and presence of roads and manmade vertical structures including towers, utility lines, fences, turbines, wells, and buildings. We will request peer...

  7. 77 FR 29275 - Oklahoma: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program (United States)


    ...: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency... ``Approved State Hazardous Waste Management Programs'', Oklahoma's authorized hazardous waste program. The... State regulations that are authorized and that the EPA will enforce under the Solid Waste Disposal Act...

  8. 77 FR 46994 - Oklahoma: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program (United States)


    ...: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency... ``Approved State Hazardous Waste Management Programs'', Oklahoma's authorized hazardous waste program. The... State regulations that are authorized and that the EPA will enforce under the Solid Waste Disposal Act...

  9. 75 FR 36609 - Oklahoma: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program (United States)


    ...: Incorporation by Reference of State Hazardous Waste Management Program AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency... ``Approved State Hazardous Waste Management Programs'', Oklahoma's authorized hazardous waste program. The... State regulations that are authorized and that the EPA will enforce under the Solid Waste Disposal Act...

  10. Children: Oklahoma's Investment in Tomorrow '96. Preliminary Report: Agency Budget by Cabinet. (United States)

    Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth, Oklahoma City.

    This report presents preliminary Oklahoma state agency budget summaries for all programs serving children in the Departments of Administration, Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Human Resources, Safety and Security, Tourism and Recreation, and Veterans Affairs. The budget figures are organized by cabinet and…

  11. American Indian Women and Screening Mammography: Findings from a Qualitative Study in Oklahoma (United States)

    Tolma, Eleni; Batterton, Chasity; Hamm, Robert M.; Thompson, David; Engelman, Kimberly K.


    Background: Breast cancer is an important public health issue within the American Indian (AI) community in Oklahoma; however, there is limited information to explain the low screening mammography rates among AI women. Purpose: To identify the motivational factors affecting an AI woman's decision to obtain a mammogram. Methods: Through the use of…

  12. Site factors influencing oak decline in the interior highlands of Arkansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma (United States)

    Edward A. Poole; Eric Heitzman; James M. Guldin


    Oak decline is affecting the forests in the Interior Highlands of Arkansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. In 2002 and 2003, field plots were established throughout the region to evaluate the influence of topographic position and aspect on oak decline. Density and basal area of dead and dying oaks did not significantly differ by either topographic position or aspect. Lack of...

  13. 78 FR 51686 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Oklahoma; Regional Haze and Interstate... (United States)


    ... American Electric Power/Public Service Company of Oklahoma AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA... addressing the Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART) requirements for sulfur dioxide (SO 2 ) and oxides of nitrogen (NO X ) for Units 3 and 4 of the American Electric Power/Public Service Company (AEP/PSO...

  14. 78 FR 73858 - Public Water System Supervision Program Revision for the State of Oklahoma (United States)


    ... approved Public Water System Supervision Program. Oklahoma has adopted three EPA drinking water rules... and Disinfection Byproducts Rule (DBP2), and (3) the Ground Water Rule (GWR). EPA has determined that... Protection Agency, Region 6, Drinking Water Section (6WQ-SD), 1445 Ross Avenue, Suite 1200, Dallas, Texas...

  15. Baseline ambient gaseous ammonia concentrations in the Four Corners area and eastern Oklahoma, USA. (United States)

    Sather, Mark E; Mathew, Johnson; Nguyen, Nghia; Lay, John; Golod, George; Vet, Robert; Cotie, Joseph; Hertel, Terry; Aaboe, Erik; Callison, Ryan; Adam, Jacque; Keese, Danielle; Freise, Jeremy; Hathcoat, April; Sakizzie, Brenda; King, Michael; Lee, Chris; Oliva, Sylvia; San Miguel, George; Crow, Leon; Geasland, Frank


    Ambient ammonia monitoring using Ogawa passive samplers was conducted in the Four Corners area and eastern Oklahoma, USA during 2007. The resulting data will be useful in the multipollutant management of ozone, nitrogen oxides, and visibility (atmospheric regional haze) in the Four Corners area, an area with growing oil/gas production and increasing coal-based power plant construction. The passive monitoring data also add new ambient ammonia concentration information for the U.S. and will be useful to scientists involved in present and future visibility modeling exercises. Three week integrated passive ammonia samples were taken at five sites in the Four Corners area and two sites in eastern Oklahoma from December, 2006 through December, 2007 (January, 2008 for two sites). Results show significantly higher regional background ammonia concentrations in eastern Oklahoma (1.8 parts per billion (ppb) arithmetic mean) compared to the Four Corners area (0.2 ppb arithmetic mean). Annual mean ammonia concentrations for all Four Corners area sites for the 2007 study ranged from 0.2 ppb to 1.5 ppb. Peak ambient ammonia concentrations occurred in the spring and summer in both areas. The passive samplers deployed at the Stilwell, Oklahoma site compared favorably with other passive samplers and a continuous ammonia monitoring instrument.

  16. Distribution and Availability of State and Areawide Water Quality Reports in Oklahoma Libraries. (United States)

    McClure, Charles R.; Million, Anne

    This report examines the distribution and availability of water quality reports in the state of Oklahoma. Based on legislation from the Clean Water Act and regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency's "Public Participation Handbook for Water Quality Management," depository libraries must be established to provide citizen access to…

  17. Urban and community forests of the South Central West region: Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas (United States)

    David J. Nowak; Eric J. Greenfield


    This report details how land cover and urbanization vary within the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas by community (incorporated and census designated places), county subdivision, and county. Specifically this report provides critical urban and community forestry information for each state including human population characteristics and trends, changes...

  18. 76 FR 19004 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions (United States)


    ... ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 271 [EPA-R06-RCRA-2010-0307; FRL-9290-9] Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions AGENCY: Environmental... authorization of the changes to its hazardous waste program under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act...

  19. 78 FR 32223 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions (United States)


    ... ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 271 [EPA-R06-RCRA-2012-0821; 9817-5] Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA... changes to its hazardous waste program under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). EPA...

  20. 77 FR 15343 - Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions (United States)


    ... ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 271 [EPA-R06-RCRA-2012-0054; FRL-9647-8] Oklahoma: Final Authorization of State Hazardous Waste Management Program Revisions AGENCY: Environmental... authorization of the changes to its hazardous waste program under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act...

  1. 77 FR 34975 - Seminole Nation of Oklahoma-Alcohol Control and Enforcement Ordinance (United States)


    ... Seminole Nation of Oklahoma and the delivery of important governmental services. Section 704. Application.... ``Applicant'' means any person who submits an application to the Alcohol Regulatory Authority for an Alcoholic... restaurants, buildings, meeting halls, hotels, theaters, retail stores, and business establishments generally...

  2. Oklahoma City FILM Even Start Family Literacy Program Evaluation, 2000-2001. (United States)

    Richardson, Donna Castle; Shove, Joanie; Brickman, Sharon; Terrell, Sherry; Shields, Jane

    This report presents findings from the evaluation of the Oklahoma City Public Schools Even Start Program, also called the Family Intergenerational Literacy Model (FILM), now in its twelfth full year of operation. The evaluation focuses on the total population of adult students, preschoolers, adult graduates, and preschool graduates. The…

  3. The Fiscal Impact of Tax-Credit Scholarships in Oklahoma. State Research (United States)

    Gottlob, Brian


    This study seeks to provide outcomes-based information on Oklahoma's proposal to give tax credits for contributing to organizations that provide scholarships to K-12 private schools. The study constructs a model to determine the fiscal impact of tax-credit scholarships on the state and on local school districts. The author estimates the impact…

  4. 78 FR 54670 - Miami Tribe of Oklahoma-Liquor Control Ordinance (United States)


    ... operations on Miami Tribe of Oklahoma Trust Land. The enactment of a tribal ordinance governing liquor and... continued operation and strengthening of the tribal government and the delivery of tribal government... dining rooms of hotels, restaurants, theaters, gaming facilities, entertainment centers, stores, garages...

  5. 76 FR 81838 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Oklahoma; Interstate Transport of Pollution (United States)


    ... ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R06-OAR-2007-0314; FRL-9613-2] Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Oklahoma; Interstate Transport of Pollution AGENCY: Environmental...)(2).) List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52 Air pollution control, Environmental protection...

  6. A Systematic Approach to Process Evaluation in the Central Oklahoma Turning Point (COTP) Partnership (United States)

    Tolma, Eleni L.; Cheney, Marshall K.; Chrislip, David D.; Blankenship, Derek; Troup, Pam; Hann, Neil


    Formation is an important stage of partnership development. Purpose: To describe the systematic approach to process evaluation of a Turning Point initiative in central Oklahoma during the formation stage. The nine-month collaborative effort aimed to develop an action plan to promote health. Methods: A sound planning framework was used in the…

  7. 76 FR 37827 - Notice of Proposed Audit Delegation Renewals for the States of Oklahoma and Montana (United States)


    ....O. Box 25165, MS 61013C, Denver, Colorado 80225. Please reference the Docket No. ONRR-2011-0018 in... 85, Room A-614, Denver Federal Center, West 6th Ave. and Kipling St., Denver, Colorado 80225. Please..., Director, Inspector's Office. Minerals Management Division, 2401 NW. 23rd Street, Suite 39, Oklahoma City...

  8. The effects of black-tailed prairie dogs on plant communities within a complex urban landscape: an ecological surprise? (United States)

    Beals, Stower C; Hartley, Laurel M; Prevéy, Janet S; Seastedt, Timothy R


    Historically, prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) have been considered essential keystone species of western United States grassland ecosystems because they provide unique services and increase vegetation community richness, evenness, and diversity. However, the effects of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) on lands adjacent to or surrounded by urban areas may not result in the same ecosystem benefits historically associated with their presence. An urban landscape presents prairie dogs with movement challenges unparalleled in natural landscapes, as well as suites of nonnative plant species that are more common in disturbed areas. This study examined a complex ecosystem where vegetation communities are being influenced by directional environmental change, and quantified the synergistic effects resulting from the protective management of a native keystone species. The data set for this analysis was comprised of 71 paired (occupied by prairie dogs vs. unoccupied) vegetation surveys and 156 additional unpaired surveys collected from around the city of Boulder, Colorado, USA for 14 yr. Linear mixed models were used to compare data from transects occupied and unoccupied by prairie dogs, as well as to evaluate the effect of prairie dog occupation duration. In the absence of prairie dogs, vegetation in this region exhibited declines in native grasses, no changes in introduced grasses, and increases in native and nonnative forbs and bare soil over the study interval. In the presence of prairie dogs, these observed directional changes were nearly all amplified at rates four to 10 times greater than when prairie dogs were absent. Areas in Boulder occupied by prairie dogs also had significantly lower richness, evenness, and diversity of plant species, compared to unoccupied areas. Analysis of plant functional groups revealed the significant reduction of perennial native grasses, as well as a significantly higher cover of introduced forbs in occupied areas. Prairie dogs

  9. Environmental Assessment: Black-Tailed Prairie Dog Management Cannon Air Force Base and Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico (United States)


    requirements are met by metabolizing grazed vegetation. Prairie dogs dig burrows to an average depth of 2-3 meters with some tunnels interconnecting with...the potential to impact non- target species such as mice, kangaroo rats, and some songbirds. Establishing control zones at CAFB and MAFR could not be...Gutierrezia sarothrae), and Russian thistle (Salsola iberica). Water requirements are met by metabolizing grazed vegetation. Prairie dogs dig burrows

  10. Grooming behaviors of black-tailed prairie dogs are influenced by flea parasitism, conspecifics, and proximity to refuge (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Biggins, Dean E.; Eads, Samantha L.


    Grooming is a common animal behavior that aids in ectoparasite defense. Ectoparasites can stimulate grooming, and natural selection can also favor endogenous mechanisms that evoke periodic bouts of “programmed” grooming to dislodge or kill ectoparasites before they bite or feed. Moreover, grooming can function as a displacement or communication behavior. We compared the grooming behaviors of adult female black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) on colonies with or without flea control via pulicide dust. Roughly 91% of the prairie dogs sampled on the non-dusted colony carried at least one flea, whereas we did not find fleas on two dusted colonies. During focal observations, prairie dogs on the non-dusted colony groomed at higher frequencies and for longer durations than prairie dogs on the dusted colonies, lending support to the hypothesis that fleas stimulated grooming. However, the reduced amount of time spent grooming on the dusted colonies suggested that approximately 25% of grooming might be attributed to factors other than direct stimulation from ectoparasites. Non-dusted colony prairie dogs rarely autogroomed when near each other. Dusted colony prairie dogs autogroomed for shorter durations when far from a burrow opening (refuge), suggesting a trade-off between self-grooming and antipredator defense. Allogrooming was detected only on the non-dusted colony and was limited to adult females grooming young pups. Grooming appears to serve an antiparasitic function in C. ludovicianus. Antiparasitic grooming might aid in defense against fleas that transmit the plague bacterium Yersinia pestis. Plague was introduced to North America ca. 1900 and now has a strong influence on most prairie dog populations, suggesting a magnified effect of grooming on prairie dog fitness.

  11. Aerial surveys adjusted by ground surveys to estimate area occupied by black-tailed prairie dog colonies (United States)

    Sidle, John G.; Augustine, David J.; Johnson, Douglas H.; Miller, Sterling D.; Cully, Jack F.; Reading, Richard P.


    Aerial surveys using line-intercept methods are one approach to estimate the extent of prairie dog colonies in a large geographic area. Although black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) construct conspicuous mounds at burrow openings, aerial observers have difficulty discriminating between areas with burrows occupied by prairie dogs (colonies) versus areas of uninhabited burrows (uninhabited colony sites). Consequently, aerial line-intercept surveys may overestimate prairie dog colony extent unless adjusted by an on-the-ground inspection of a sample of intercepts. We compared aerial line-intercept surveys conducted over 2 National Grasslands in Colorado, USA, with independent ground-mapping of known black-tailed prairie dog colonies. Aerial line-intercepts adjusted by ground surveys using a single activity category adjustment overestimated colonies by ≥94% on the Comanche National Grassland and ≥58% on the Pawnee National Grassland. We present a ground-survey technique that involves 1) visiting on the ground a subset of aerial intercepts classified as occupied colonies plus a subset of intercepts classified as uninhabited colony sites, and 2) based on these ground observations, recording the proportion of each aerial intercept that intersects a colony and the proportion that intersects an uninhabited colony site. Where line-intercept techniques are applied to aerial surveys or remotely sensed imagery, this method can provide more accurate estimates of black-tailed prairie dog abundance and trends

  12. Longitudinal Trajectories and Inter-parental Dynamics of Prairie Vole Biparental Care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Forrest D. Rogers


    Full Text Available For altricial mammalian species, early life social bonds are constructed principally between offspring and their mothers, and the mother-offspring relationship sets the trajectory for offspring bio-behavioral development. In the rare subset of monogamous and biparental species, offspring experience an expanded social network which includes a father. Accordingly, in biparental species fathers also have the potential to influence trajectories of offspring development. Previous semi-natural and laboratory study of one monogamous and biparental species, the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster, has given insight into the role that mothers and fathers play in shaping behavioral phenotypes of offspring. Of particular interest is the influence of biparental care in the development of monogamous behavior in offspring. Here, we first briefly review that influence. We then present novel research which describes how parental investment in prairie voles changes across sequential litters of pups, and the extent to which it is coordinated between mothers and fathers. We use approximately 6 years of archival data on prairie vole parenting to investigate trajectories and inter-parent dynamics in prairie vole parenting. We use a series of latent growth models to assess the stability of parental investment across the first 4 l. Our findings suggest that prairie voles display sexually dimorphic patterns of change in parental behavior: mothers' investment declines linearly whereas fathers' pattern of change is characterized by initial decline between litters 1 and 2 with subsequent increase from litters 2 to 4. Our findings also support a conclusion that prairie vole paternal care may be better characterized as compensatory—that is, fathers may compensate for decline in maternal investment. Opposing trends in investment between mothers and fathers ultimately imply stability in offspring investment across sequential litters. These findings, combined with previous

  13. Evaluation of methods for Canada thistle-free habitat restoration (United States)

    Department of the Interior — Efforts to preserve and restore rare habitats, such as the tallgrass prairies, are at the core of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s mission. This study evaluates...

  14. Apparent field safety of a raccoon poxvirus-vectored plague vaccine in free-ranging prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.), Colorado, USA. (United States)

    Tripp, Daniel W; Rocke, Tonie E; Streich, Sean P; Abbott, Rachel C; Osorio, Jorge E; Miller, Michael W


    Prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) suffer high rates of mortality from plague. An oral sylvatic plague vaccine using the raccoon poxvirus vector (designated RCN-F1/V307) has been developed for prairie dogs. This vaccine is incorporated into palatable bait along with rhodamine B as a biomarker. We conducted trials in August and September 2012 to demonstrate uptake and apparent safety of the RCN-F1/V307 vaccine in two prairie dog species under field conditions. Free-ranging prairie dogs and other associated small rodents readily consumed vaccine-laden baits during field trials with no apparent adverse effects; most sampled prairie dogs (90%) and associated small rodents (78%) had consumed baits. Visual counts of prairie dogs and their burrows revealed no evidence of prairie dog decline after vaccine exposure. No vaccine-related morbidity, mortality, or gross or microscopic lesions were observed. Poxviruses were not isolated from any animal sampled prior to bait distribution or on sites that received placebo baits. We isolated RCN-F1/V307 from 17 prairie dogs and two deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) captured on sites where vaccine-laden baits were distributed. Based on these findings, studies examining the utility and effectiveness of oral vaccination to prevent plague-induced mortality in prairie dogs and associated species are underway.

  15. Apparent field safety of a raccoon poxvirus-vectored plague vaccine in free-ranging prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.), Colorado, USA (United States)

    Tripp, Daniel W.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Streich, Sean P.; Abbott, Rachel C.; Osorio, Jorge E.; Miller, Michael W.


    Prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) suffer high rates of mortality from plague. An oral sylvatic plague vaccine using the raccoon poxvirus vector (designated RCN-F1/V307) has been developed for prairie dogs. This vaccine is incorporated into palatable bait along with rhodamine B as a biomarker. We conducted trials in August and September 2012 to demonstrate uptake and apparent safety of the RCN-F1/V307 vaccine in two prairie dog species under field conditions. Free-ranging prairie dogs and other associated small rodents readily consumed vaccine-laden baits during field trials with no apparent adverse effects; most sampled prairie dogs (90%) and associated small rodents (78%) had consumed baits. Visual counts of prairie dogs and their burrows revealed no evidence of prairie dog decline after vaccine exposure. No vaccine-related morbidity, mortality, or gross or microscopic lesions were observed. Poxviruses were not isolated from any animal sampled prior to bait distribution or on sites that received placebo baits. We isolated RCN-F1/V307 from 17 prairie dogs and two deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) captured on sites where vaccine-laden baits were distributed. Based on these findings, studies examining the utility and effectiveness of oral vaccination to prevent plague-induced mortality in prairie dogs and associated species are underway.

  16. Gaseous Oxidized Mercury Dry Deposition Measurements in Southwestern USA: Comparison between texas, Eastern Oklahoma, and the Four Corners Area (United States)

    Gaseous oxidized mercury (GOM) dry deposition measurements using aerodynamic surrogate surface passive samplers were collected in central and eastern Texas and eastern Oklahoma, from September 2011 to September 2012.The purpose of this study was to provide an initial characteriza...

  17. Long-Term Movement and Estimated Age of a Paddlefish (Polyodon spathula) in the Arkansas River Basin of Oklahoma (United States)

    Long, James M.


    We report the age and distance moved for an individual paddlefish (Polyodon spathula) that was tagged March 1998 in the Cimarron River Arm of Keystone Lake, Oklahoma, and snagged by an angler in April 2016 downstream of Eufaula Dam, Oklahoma. The fish was part of a cohort spawned in 1995. At the time of initial capture, the fish measured 795 mm eye–fork length, was estimated to be 3 y old, and 18 y had elapsed before its recapture by an angler in 2016, indicating this fish was 21 y old at recapture. Although paddlefish as old as 27 have been estimated in the Grand River basin of Oklahoma, this is the oldest fish known in the Arkansas River basin of Oklahoma. At the place of its recapture, this fish would have traveled approximately 235 km, passing downstream through three dams before moving upstream to Eufaula Dam.

  18. Whole-Building Design Increases Energy Efficiency in a Mixed-Humid Climate: Ideal Homes, Norman, Oklahoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poole, L.; Anderson, R.


    New houses designed by Ideal Homes, with technical support from the U.S. Department of Energy's Building America Program, save their homeowners money by applying the principles of ''whole-building'' design. The homes are in Norman, Oklahoma

  19. Mapping wetlands and surface water in the Prairie Pothole Region of North America: Chapter 16 (United States)

    Rover, Jennifer R.; Mushet, David M.


    The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) is one of the most highly productive wetland regions in the world. Prairie Pothole wetlands serve as a primary feeding and breeding habitat for more than one-half of North America’s waterfowl population, as well as a variety of songbirds, waterbirds, shorebirds, and other wildlife. During the last century, extensive land conversions from grassland with wetlands to cultivated cropland and grazed pastureland segmented and reduced wetland habitat. Inventorying and characterizing remaining wetland habitat is critical for the management of wetland ecosystem services. Remote sensing technologies are often utilized for mapping and monitoring wetlands. This chapter presents background specific to the PPR and discusses approaches employed in mapping its wetlands before presenting a case study.

  20. Plague bacterium as a transformer species in prairie dogs and the grasslands of western North America (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Biggins, Dean E.


    Invasive transformer species change the character, condition, form, or nature of ecosystems and deserve considerable attention from conservation scientists. We applied the transformer species concept to the plague bacterium Yersinia pestis in western North America, where the pathogen was introduced around 1900. Y. pestis transforms grassland ecosystems by severely depleting the abundance of prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) and thereby causing declines in native species abundance and diversity, including threatened and endangered species; altering food web connections; altering the import and export of nutrients; causing a loss of ecosystem resilience to encroaching invasive plants; and modifying prairie dog burrows. Y. pestis poses an important challenge to conservation biologists because it causes trophic-level perturbations that affect the stability of ecosystems. Unfortunately, understanding of the effects of Y. pestis on ecosystems is rudimentary, highlighting an acute need for continued research.

  1. Respiratory isolation for tuberculosis: the experience of Indigenous peoples on the Canadian prairies. (United States)

    Mayan, M; Robinson, T; Gokiert, R; Tremblay, M; Abonyi, S; Long, R


    Setting: The Prairie provinces of Canada. Objective: To understand how Indigenous peoples with infectious pulmonary tuberculosis living in different community settings in the Prairie provinces of Canada experience respiratory isolation. Design: Using an exploratory qualitative approach, we interviewed participants living in urban centres, non-remote reserve settings and remote and isolated reserve settings. Results: Through qualitative content analysis of 48 interviews, we determined that participants experienced feelings of confinement regardless of the community setting in which they lived. Participants also experienced family and social disconnect, but the experience was more potent for the remote and isolated reserve participants, who were required to be flown out of their home communities to receive treatment, and for those urban centre and non-remote reserve participants who lacked social connections. The roles of past experiences with sanitoria and of family in providing social support are discussed. Conclusions: The conclusions of this study focus on examining isolation policies and improving the hospital isolation experience.

  2. Plague bacterium as a transformer species in prairie dogs and the grasslands of western North America. (United States)

    Eads, David A; Biggins, Dean E


    Invasive transformer species change the character, condition, form, or nature of ecosystems and deserve considerable attention from conservation scientists. We applied the transformer species concept to the plague bacterium Yersinia pestis in western North America, where the pathogen was introduced around 1900. Y. pestis transforms grassland ecosystems by severely depleting the abundance of prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) and thereby causing declines in native species abundance and diversity, including threatened and endangered species; altering food web connections; altering the import and export of nutrients; causing a loss of ecosystem resilience to encroaching invasive plants; and modifying prairie dog burrows. Y. pestis poses an important challenge to conservation biologists because it causes trophic-level perturbations that affect the stability of ecosystems. Unfortunately, understanding of the effects of Y. pestis on ecosystems is rudimentary, highlighting an acute need for continued research. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  3. Implementation of an advanced digital feedwater control system at the Prairie Island nuclear generating station

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paris, R.E.; Gaydos, K.A.; Hill, J.O.; Whitson, S.G.; Wirkkala, R.


    EPRI Project RP2126-4 was a cooperative effort between TVA, EPRI, and Westinghouse which resulted in the demonstration of a prototype of a full range, fully automatic feedwater control system, using fault tolerant digital technology, at the TVA Sequoyah simulator site. That prototype system also included advanced signal validation algorithms and an advanced man-machine interface that used CRT-based soft-control technology. The Westinghouse Advanced Digital Feedwater Control System (ADFCS) upgrade, which contains elements that were part of that prototype system, has since been installed at Northern States Power's Prairie Island Unit 2. This upgrade was very successful due to the use of an advanced control system design and the execution of a well coordinated joint effort between the utility and the supplier. The project experience is documented in this report to help utilities evaluate the technical implications of such a project. The design basis of the Prairie Island ADFCS signal validation for input signal failure fault tolerance is outlined first. Features of the industry-proven system control algorithms are then described. Pre-shipment hardware-in-loop and factory acceptance testing of the Prairie Island system are summarized. Post-shipment site testing, including preoperational and plant startup testing, is also summarized. Plant data from the initial system startup is included. The installation of the Prairie Island ADFCS is described, including both the feedwater control instrumentation and the control board interface. Modification of the plant simulator and operator and I ampersand C personnel training are also discussed. 6 refs., 14 figs., 3 tabs

  4. Alcohol’s Effects on Pair-Bond Maintenance in Male Prairie Voles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andre T. Walcott


    Full Text Available Alcohol abuse can have devastating effects on social relationships. In particular, discrepant patterns of heavy alcohol consumption are associated with increased rates of separation and divorce. Previous studies have attempted to model these effects of alcohol using socially monogamous prairie voles. These studies showed that alcohol consumption can inhibit the formation of pair bonds in this species. While these findings indicated that alcohol’s effects on social attachments can involve biological mechanisms, the formation of pair bonds does not properly model long-term human attachments. To overcome this caveat, this study explored whether discordant or concordant alcohol consumption between individuals within established pairs affects maintenance of pair bonds in male prairie voles. Male and female prairie voles were allowed to form a pair bond for 1 week. Following this 1-week cohabitation period, males received access to 10% continuous ethanol; meanwhile, their female partners had access to either alcohol and water or just water. When there was a discrepancy in alcohol consumption, male prairie voles showed a decrease in partner preference (PP. Conversely, when concordant drinking occurred, males showed no inhibition in PP. Further analysis revealed a decrease in oxytocin immunoreactivity in the paraventricular nucleus of alcohol-exposed males that was independent of the drinking status of their female partners. On the other hand, only discordant alcohol consumption resulted in an increase of FosB immunoreactivity in the periaqueductal gray of male voles, a finding suggesting a potential involvement of this brain region in the effects of alcohol on maintenance of pair bonds. Our studies provide the first evidence that alcohol has effects on established pair bonds and that partner drinking status plays a large role in these effects.

  5. Widespread use and frequent detection of neonicotinoid insecticides in wetlands of Canada's Prairie Pothole Region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anson R Main

    Full Text Available Neonicotinoids currently dominate the insecticide market as seed treatments on Canada's major Prairie crops (e.g., canola. The potential impact to ecologically significant wetlands in this dominantly agro-environment has largely been overlooked while the distribution of use, incidence and level of contamination remains unreported. We modelled the spatial distribution of neonicotinoid use across the three Prairie Provinces in combination with temporal assessments of water and sediment concentrations in wetlands to measure four active ingredients (clothianidin, thiamethoxam, imidacloprid and acetamiprid. From 2009 to 2012, neonicotinoid use was increasing; by 2012, applications covered an estimated ∼11 million hectares (44% of Prairie cropland with >216,000 kg of active ingredients. Thiamethoxam, followed by clothianidin, were the dominant seed treatments by mass and area. Areas of high neonicotinoid use were identified as high density canola or soybean production. Water sampled four times from 136 wetlands (spring, summer, fall 2012 and spring 2013 across four rural municipalities in Saskatchewan similarly revealed clothianidin and thiamethoxam in the majority of samples. In spring 2012 prior to seeding, 36% of wetlands contained at least one neonicotinoid. Detections increased to 62% in summer 2012, declined to 16% in fall, and increased to 91% the following spring 2013 after ice-off. Peak concentrations were recorded during summer 2012 for both thiamethoxam (range:

  6. Widespread use and frequent detection of neonicotinoid insecticides in wetlands of Canada's Prairie Pothole Region. (United States)

    Main, Anson R; Headley, John V; Peru, Kerry M; Michel, Nicole L; Cessna, Allan J; Morrissey, Christy A


    Neonicotinoids currently dominate the insecticide market as seed treatments on Canada's major Prairie crops (e.g., canola). The potential impact to ecologically significant wetlands in this dominantly agro-environment has largely been overlooked while the distribution of use, incidence and level of contamination remains unreported. We modelled the spatial distribution of neonicotinoid use across the three Prairie Provinces in combination with temporal assessments of water and sediment concentrations in wetlands to measure four active ingredients (clothianidin, thiamethoxam, imidacloprid and acetamiprid). From 2009 to 2012, neonicotinoid use was increasing; by 2012, applications covered an estimated ∼11 million hectares (44% of Prairie cropland) with >216,000 kg of active ingredients. Thiamethoxam, followed by clothianidin, were the dominant seed treatments by mass and area. Areas of high neonicotinoid use were identified as high density canola or soybean production. Water sampled four times from 136 wetlands (spring, summer, fall 2012 and spring 2013) across four rural municipalities in Saskatchewan similarly revealed clothianidin and thiamethoxam in the majority of samples. In spring 2012 prior to seeding, 36% of wetlands contained at least one neonicotinoid. Detections increased to 62% in summer 2012, declined to 16% in fall, and increased to 91% the following spring 2013 after ice-off. Peak concentrations were recorded during summer 2012 for both thiamethoxam (range: Wetlands situated in barley, canola and oat fields consistently contained higher mean concentrations of neonicotinoids than in grasslands, but no individual crop singularly influenced overall detections or concentrations. Distribution maps indicate neonicotinoid use is increasing and becoming more widespread with concerns for environmental loading, while frequently detected neonicotinoid concentrations in Prairie wetlands suggest high persistence and transport into wetlands.

  7. The relative contribution of climate to changes in lesser prairie-chicken abundance (United States)

    Ross, Beth E.; Haukos, David A.; Hagen, Christian A.; Pitman, James


    Managing for species using current weather patterns fails to incorporate the uncertainty associated with future climatic conditions; without incorporating potential changes in climate into conservation strategies, management and conservation efforts may fall short or waste valuable resources. Understanding the effects of climate change on species in the Great Plains of North America is especially important, as this region is projected to experience an increased magnitude of climate change. Of particular ecological and conservation interest is the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus), which was listed as “threatened” under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in May 2014. We used Bayesian hierarchical models to quantify the effects of extreme climatic events (extreme values of the Palmer Drought Severity Index [PDSI]) relative to intermediate (changes in El Niño Southern Oscillation) and long-term climate variability (changes in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation) on trends in lesser prairie-chicken abundance from 1981 to 2014. Our results indicate that lesser prairie-chicken abundance on leks responded to environmental conditions of the year previous by positively responding to wet springs (high PDSI) and negatively to years with hot, dry summers (low PDSI), but had little response to variation in the El Niño Southern Oscillation and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. Additionally, greater variation in abundance on leks was explained by variation in site relative to broad-scale climatic indices. Consequently, lesser prairie-chicken abundance on leks in Kansas is more strongly influenced by extreme drought events during summer than other climatic conditions, which may have negative consequences for the population as drought conditions intensify throughout the Great Plains.

  8. GIS habitat analysis for lesser prairie-chickens in southeastern New Mexico


    Johnson, Kristine; Neville, Teri B; Neville, Paul


    Abstract Background We conducted Geographic Information System (GIS) habitat analyses for lesser prairie-chicken (LPCH, Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) conservation planning. The 876,799 ha study area included most of the occupied habitat for the LPCH in New Mexico. The objectives were to identify and quantify: 1. suitable LPCH habitat in New Mexico, 2. conversion of native habitats, 3. potential for habitat restoration, and 4. unsuitable habitat available for oil and gas activities. Results We f...

  9. Interannual water-level fluctuations and the vegetation of prairie potholes: Potential impacts of climate change (United States)

    van der Valk, Arnold; Mushet, David M.


    Mean water depth and range of interannual water-level fluctuations over wet-dry cycles in precipitation are major drivers of vegetation zone formation in North American prairie potholes. We used harmonic hydrological models, which require only mean interannual water depth and amplitude of water-level fluctuations over a wet–dry cycle, to examine how the vegetation zones in a pothole would respond to small changes in water depth and/or amplitude of water-level fluctuations. Field data from wetlands in Saskatchewan, North Dakota, and South Dakota were used to parameterize harmonic models for four pothole classes. Six scenarios in which small negative or positive changes in either mean water depth, amplitude of interannual fluctuations, or both, were modeled to predict if they would affect the number of zones in each wetland class. The results indicated that, in some cases, even small changes in mean water depth when coupled with a small change in amplitude of water-level fluctuations can shift a prairie pothole wetland from one class to another. Our results suggest that climate change could alter the relative proportion of different wetland classes in the prairie pothole region.

  10. Managing prairie dogs by managing plague: a vaccine for the future? (United States)

    Johnson, Terry B.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Gober, Pete; Van Pelt, Bill E.; Miller, Michael W.; Tripp, Daniel W.; Abbott, Rachel C.; Bergman, David L.


    The Black-footed Ferret Recovery Implementation Team Executive Committee is conducting a project to develop,and (hopefully) eventually implement, a plague vaccination program for prairie dogs. The project is a component of the WesternAssociation of Fish and Wildlife Agencies Grasslands Conservation Initiative. An effective, field-worthy vaccine against plaguecould be the biggest breakthrough in recovery efforts for the black-footed ferret since the 1981 rediscovery of wild ferrets nearMeeteetse, Wyoming. If proven efficacious, the vaccine could help agencies and stakeholder cooperators maintain specificpopulations of prairie dogs at robust levels, thus enhancing range-wide conservation of those species, as well recovery of the ferret,while enabling control of other prairie dog populations to resolve site-specific agricultural and human health concerns. The resultsof laboratory and field-testing in the early stages of developing this vaccine are preliminary but mostly encouraging. A plan forbroad-scale application is being developed for possible use when testing has been completed and (if warranted) the vaccine isregistered for governmental use. An overview of all aspects of the project is discussed.

  11. Evaluation of monkeypox virus infection of prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) using in vivo bioluminescent imaging (United States)

    Falendysz, Elizabeth A.; Londoño-Navas, Angela M.; Meteyer, Carol U.; Pussini, Nicola; Lopera, Juan G.; Osorio, Jorge E.; Rocke, Tonie E.


    Monkeypox (MPX) is a re-emerging zoonotic disease that is endemic in Central and West Africa, where it can cause a smallpox-like disease in humans. Despite many epidemiologic and field investigations of MPX, no definitive reservoir species has been identified. Using recombinant viruses expressing the firefly luciferase (luc) gene, we previously demonstrated the suitability of in vivo bioluminescent imaging (BLI) to study the pathogenesis of MPX in animal models. Here, we evaluated BLI as a novel approach for tracking MPX virus infection in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus). Prairie dogs were affected during a multistate outbreak of MPX in the US in 2003 and have since been used as an animal model of this disease. Our BLI results were compared with PCR and virus isolation from tissues collected postmortem. Virus was easily detected and quantified in skin and superficial tissues by BLI before and during clinical phases, as well as in subclinical secondary cases, but was not reliably detected in deep tissues such as the lung. Although there are limitations to viral detection in larger wild rodent species, BLI can enhance the use of prairie dogs as an animal model of MPX and can be used for the study of infection, disease progression, and transmission in potential wild rodent reservoirs.

  12. Model estimation of land-use effects on water levels of northern Prairie wetlands (United States)

    Voldseth, R.A.; Johnson, W.C.; Gilmanov, T.; Guntenspergen, G.R.; Millett, B.V.


    Wetlands of the Prairie Pothole Region exist in a matrix of grassland dominated by intensive pastoral and cultivation agriculture. Recent conservation management has emphasized the conversion of cultivated farmland and degraded pastures to intact grassland to improve upland nesting habitat. The consequences of changes in land-use cover that alter watershed processes have not been evaluated relative to their effect on the water budgets and vegetation dynamics of associated wetlands. We simulated the effect of upland agricultural practices on the water budget and vegetation of a semipermanent prairie wetland by modifying a previously published mathematical model (WETSIM). Watershed cover/land-use practices were categorized as unmanaged grassland (native grass, smooth brome), managed grassland (moderately heavily grazed, prescribed burned), cultivated crops (row crop, small grain), and alfalfa hayland. Model simulations showed that differing rates of evapotranspiration and runoff associated with different upland plant-cover categories in the surrounding catchment produced differences in wetland water budgets and linked ecological dynamics. Wetland water levels were highest and vegetation the most dynamic under the managed-grassland simulations, while water levels were the lowest and vegetation the least dynamic under the unmanaged-grassland simulations. The modeling results suggest that unmanaged grassland, often planted for waterfowl nesting, may produce the least favorable wetland conditions for birds, especially in drier regions of the Prairie Pothole Region. These results stand as hypotheses that urgently need to be verified with empirical data.

  13. Investigation of climate change impacts on Prairie's petroleum industry in Canada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, J.B.; Huang, G.H.; Chakma, A.; Huang, Y.F.; Zeng, G.M.


    Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, the three Prairie provinces of Canada, and their economies strongly depend on the petroleum industry. However, climate change may have potential impacts on the sector that could reverberate onto the socio-economic fabric of the provinces. The petroleum industry in the Prairies is faced with a big challenge: how to adapt to the changing climatic conditions so that they maintain or improve their economic and environmental efficiencies. The attitudes of the different stakeholders concerning climate change and the appropriate measures to be implemented by the petroleum industry were obtained through a questionnaire-based survey conducted between February and June 2001. Based on the responses received, a Chi-square statistical test was applied to look at the complex interactions in the results. An analysis of a number of petroleum-related processes and activities vulnerable to climate change was performed. A sound foundation was obtained for the decision-making process on the climate change measures required in the petroleum industry in the Prairies. 14 refs., 7 tabs

  14. Melanocortin Receptor Agonists Facilitate Oxytocin-Dependent Partner Preference Formation in the Prairie Vole. (United States)

    Modi, Meera E; Inoue, Kiyoshi; Barrett, Catherine E; Kittelberger, Kara A; Smith, Daniel G; Landgraf, Rainer; Young, Larry J


    The central melanocortin (MC) system has been widely studied for its effects on food intake and sexual behavior. However, the MC system, and more specifically the MC4 receptor (MC4R), also interacts with neurochemical systems that regulate socioemotional behaviors, including oxytocin (OT) and dopamine. In monogamous prairie voles, OT and dopamine interact to promote partner preference formation, a laboratory measure of an enduring social bond between mates. Here we investigated the effects of MC receptor activation on partner preference formation in prairie voles, as well as the interaction between the MC and OT systems during this process. Peripheral administration of the brain penetrant MC3/4R receptor peptide agonist, Melanotan II (MTII), and the highly selective, small-molecule MC4R agonist, Pf-446687, enhanced partner preference formation in the prairie vole, but not in the non-monogamous meadow vole. MTII-induced partner preferences were enduring, as they were present 1 week after drug manipulation. The prosocial effects of MCR agonists may be mediated, in part, through modulation of OT, as coadministration of an OT receptor antagonist prevented MTII-induced partner preferences. MTII also selectively activated hypothalamic OT neurons and potentiated central OT release. As OT has been shown to enhance some aspects of social cognition in humans, our data suggest that the MC4R may be a viable therapeutic target for enhancing social function in psychiatric disorders, including autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia, potentially through activation of the OT system.

  15. Partner Loss in Monogamous Rodents: Modulation of Pain and Emotional Behavior in Male Prairie Voles. (United States)

    Osako, Yoji; Nobuhara, Reiko; Arai, Young-Chang P; Tanaka, Kenjiro; Young, Larry J; Nishihara, Makoto; Mitsui, Shinichi; Yuri, Kazunari


    Pain is modulated by psychosocial factors, and social stress-induced hyperalgesia is a common clinical symptom in pain disorders. To provide a new animal model for studying social modulation of pain, we examined pain behaviors in monogamous prairie voles experiencing partner loss. After cohabitation with novel females, males (n = 79) were divided into two groups on the basis of preference test scores. Half of the males of each group were separated from their partner (loss group), whereas the other half remained paired (paired group). Thus, males from both groups experienced social isolation. Open field tests, plantar tests, and formalin tests were then conducted on males to assess anxiety and pain-related behaviors. Loss males showing partner preferences (n = 20) displayed a significant increase in anxiety-related behavior in the open-field test (central area/total distance: 13.65% [1.58%] for paired versus 6.45% [0.87%] for loss; p partner preferences (r = 0.15). Results indicate that social bonds and their disruption, but not social housing without bonding followed by isolation, modulate pain and emotion in male prairie voles. The prairie vole is a useful model for exploring the neural mechanisms by which social relationships contribute to pain and nociceptive processing in humans.

  16. Assessing range-wide habitat suitability for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (United States)

    Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Holcombe, Tracy R.; Grisham, Blake A.; Timmer, Jennifer M.; Boal, Clint W.; Butler, Matthew; Pitman, James C.; Kyle, Sean; Klute, David; Beauprez, Grant M.; Janus, Allan; Van Pelt, William E.


    Population declines of many wildlife species have been linked to habitat loss incurred through land-use change. Incorporation of conservation planning into development planning may mitigate these impacts. The threatened Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) is experiencing loss of native habitat and high levels of energy development across its multijurisdictional range. Our goal was to explore relationships of the species occurrence with landscape characteristics and anthropogenic effects influencing its distribution through evaluation of habitat suitability associated with one particular habitat usage, lekking. Lekking has been relatively well-surveyed, though not consistently, in all jurisdictions. All five states in which Lesser Prairie-Chickens occur cooperated in development of a Maxent habitat suitability model. We created two models, one with state as a factor and one without state. When state was included it was the most important predictor, followed by percent of land cover consisting of known or suspected used vegetation classes within a 5000 m area around a lek. Without state, land cover was the most important predictor of relative habitat suitability for leks. Among the anthropogenic predictors, landscape condition, a measure of human impact integrated across several factors, was most important, ranking third in importance without state. These results quantify the relative suitability of the landscape within the current occupied range of Lesser Prairie-Chickens. These models, combined with other landscape information, form the basis of a habitat assessment tool that can be used to guide siting of development projects and targeting of areas for conservation.

  17. Characterization of the oxytocin system regulating affiliative behavior in female prairie voles. (United States)

    Ross, H E; Cole, C D; Smith, Y; Neumann, I D; Landgraf, R; Murphy, A Z; Young, L J


    Oxytocin regulates partner preference formation and alloparental behavior in the socially monogamous prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster) by activating oxytocin receptors in the nucleus accumbens of females. Mating facilitates partner preference formation, and oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers in the nucleus accumbens have been described in prairie voles. However, there has been no direct evidence of oxytocin release in the nucleus accumbens during sociosexual interactions, and the origin of the oxytocin fibers is unknown. Here we show for the first time that extracellular concentrations of oxytocin are increased in the nucleus accumbens of female prairie vole during unrestricted interactions with a male. We further show that the distribution of oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers in the nucleus accumbens is conserved in voles, mice and rats, despite remarkable species differences in oxytocin receptor binding in the region. Using a combination of site-specific and peripheral infusions of the retrograde tracer Fluorogold, we demonstrate that the nucleus accumbens oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers likely originate from paraventricular and supraoptic hypothalamic neurons. This distribution of retrogradely labeled neurons is consistent with the hypothesis that striatal oxytocin fibers arise from collaterals of magnocellular neurons of the neurohypophysial system. If correct, this may serve to coordinate peripheral and central release of oxytocin with appropriate behavioral responses associated with reproduction, including pair bonding after mating, and maternal responsiveness following parturition and during lactation.

  18. Uptake of C14-atrazine by prairie grasses in a phytoremediation setting. (United States)

    Khrunyk, Yuliya; Schiewer, Silke; Carstens, Keri L; Hu, Dingfei; Coats, Joel R


    Agrochemicals significantly contribute to environmental pollution. In the USA, atrazine is a widely used pesticide and commonly found in rivers, water systems, and rural wells. Phytoremediation can be a cost-effective means of removing pesticides from soil. The objective of this project was to investigate the ability of prairie grasses to remove atrazine. 14 C-labeled atrazine was added to sterilized sand and water/nutrient cultures, and the analysis was performed after 21 days. Switchgrass and big bluestem were promising species for phytoremediation, taking up about 40% of the applied [ 14 C] in liquid hydroponic cultures, and between 20% and 33% in sand cultures. Yellow Indiangrass showed low resistance to atrazine toxicity and low uptake of [ 14 C] atrazine in liquid hydroponic cultures. Atrazine degradation increased progressively from sand to roots and leaves. Most atrazine taken up by prairie grasses from sand culture was degraded to metabolites, which accounted for 60-80% of [ 14 C] detected in leaves. Deisopropylatrazine (DIA) was the main metabolite detected in sand and roots, whereas in leaves further metabolism took place, forming increased amounts of didealkylatrazine (DDA) and an unidentified metabolite. In conclusion, prairie grasses achieved high atrazine removal and degradation, showing a high potential for phytoremediation.

  19. Revegetation of wellsite disturbances on Fescue Prairie in east-central Alberta

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woosaree, J.; Puhl, M.


    It has been observed that past methods of revegetating disturbed land in Alberta by using commercially-available species of grasses has had limited success in terms of biodiversity, the reason being that commercial forage species are highly competitive, and as such not only prevented the original prairie species from returning to reclaimed sites, but in some cases they have migrated from reclaimed sites and invaded surrounding native prairie. Alfalfa, crested wheatgrass, Kentucky bluegrass and Canada bluegrass are believed to be the most invasive of these commercially available species. Because their use in the past has resulted in landscape fragmentation, they are not recommended for use on wellsites located on native prairie. The limited mix of available native grass cultivars also have had limited success in increasing species diversity. Cross seeding has been suggested as one method for reducing the effect of inter-specific competition on the species emergence. However, the general view of government and industry is that improved methods of revegetation of wellsite disturbances and new guidelines for determining reclamation success are required to establish more ecologically compatible plant communities on well site disturbances 4 refs., 1 tab., 3 figs

  20. Arbuscular common mycorrhizal networks mediate intra- and interspecific interactions of two prairie grasses. (United States)

    Weremijewicz, Joanna; da Silveira Lobo O'Reilly Sternberg, Leonel; Janos, David P


    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi form extensive common mycorrhizal networks (CMNs) that may interconnect neighboring root systems of the same or different plant species, thereby potentially influencing the distribution of limiting mineral nutrients among plants. We examined how CMNs affected intra- and interspecific interactions within and between populations of Andropogon gerardii, a highly mycorrhiza dependent, dominant prairie grass and Elymus canadensis, a moderately dependent, subordinate prairie species. We grew A. gerardii and E. canadensis alone and intermixed in microcosms, with individual root systems isolated, but either interconnected by CMNs or with CMNs severed weekly. CMNs, which provided access to a large soil volume, improved survival of both A. gerardii and E. canadensis, but intensified intraspecific competition for A. gerardii. When mixed with E. canadensis, A. gerardii overyielded aboveground biomass in the presence of intact CMNs but not when CMNs were severed, suggesting that A. gerardii with intact CMNs most benefitted from weaker interspecific than intraspecific interactions across CMNs. CMNs improved manganese uptake by both species, with the largest plants receiving the most manganese. Enhanced growth in consequence of improved mineral nutrition led to large E. canadensis in intact CMNs experiencing water-stress, as indicated by 13 C isotope abundance. Our findings suggest that in prairie plant communities, CMNs may influence mineral nutrient distribution, water relations, within-species size hierarchies, and between-species interactions.

  1. Interactive effects of chemical and biological controls on food-web composition in saline prairie lakes. (United States)

    Cooper, Ryan N; Wissel, Björn


    Salinity is restricting habitatability for many biota in prairie lakes due to limited physiological abilities to cope with increasing osmotic stress. Yet, it remains unclear how salinity effects vary among major taxonomic groups and what role other environmental parameters play in shaping food-web composition. To answer these questions, we sampled fish, zooplankton and littoral macroinvertebrates in 20 prairie lakes (Saskatchewan, Canada) characterized by large gradients in water chemistry and lake morphometry. We showed that salinity thresholds differed among major taxonomic groups, as most fishes were absent above salinities of 2 g L-1, while littoral macroinvertebrates were ubiquitous. Zooplankton occurred over the whole salinity range, but changed taxonomic composition as salinity increased. Subsequently, the complexity of fish community (diversity) was associated with large changes in invertebrate communities. The directional changes in invertebrate communities to smaller taxa indicated that complex fish assemblages resulted in higher predation pressure. Most likely, as the complexity of fish community decreased, controls of invertebrate assemblages shifted from predation to competition and ultimately to productivity in hypersaline lakes. Surprisingly, invertebrate predators did not thrive in the absence of fishes in these systems. Furthermore, the here identified salinity threshold for fishes was too low to be a result of osmotic stress. Hence, winterkill was likely an important factor eliminating fishes in low salinity lakes that had high productivity and shallow water depth. Ultimately, while salinity was crucial, intricate combinations of chemical and biological mechanisms also played a major role in controlling the assemblages of major taxonomic groups in prairie lakes.

  2. Production of germline transgenic prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) using lentiviral vectors. (United States)

    Donaldson, Zoe R; Yang, Shang-Hsun; Chan, Anthony W S; Young, Larry J


    The study of alternative model organisms has yielded tremendous insights into the regulation of behavioral and physiological traits not displayed by more widely used animal models, such as laboratory rats and mice. In particular, comparative approaches often exploit species ideally suited for investigating specific phenomenon. For instance, comparative studies of socially monogamous prairie voles and polygamous meadow voles have been instrumental toward gaining an understanding of the genetic and neurobiological basis of social bonding. However, laboratory studies of less commonly used organisms, such as prairie voles, have been limited by a lack of genetic tools, including the ability to manipulate the genome. Here, we show that lentiviral vector-mediated transgenesis is a rapid and efficient approach for creating germline transgenics in alternative laboratory rodents. Injection of a green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing lentiviral vector into the perivitelline space of 23 single-cell embryos yielded three live offspring (13 %), one of which (33%) contained germline integration of a GFP transgene driven by the human ubiquitin-C promoter. In comparison, transfer of 23 uninjected embryos yielded six live offspring (26%). Green fluorescent protein is present in all tissues examined and is expressed widely in the brain. The GFP transgene is heritable and stably expressed until at least the F(2) generation. This technology has the potential to allow investigation of specific gene candidates in prairie voles and provides a general protocol to pursue germline transgenic manipulation in many different rodent species.

  3. Identification and evaluation of fluvial-dominated deltaic (Class I oil) reservoirs in Oklahoma. Final report, August 1998

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Banken, M.K.


    The Oklahoma Geological Survey (OGS), the Geo Information Systems department, and the School of Petroleum and Geological Engineering at the University of Oklahoma have engaged in a five-year program to identify and address Oklahoma`s oil recovery opportunities in fluvial-dominated deltaic (FDD) reservoirs. This program included a systematic and comprehensive collection and evaluation of information on all FDD oil reservoirs in Oklahoma and the recovery technologies that have been (or could be) applied to those reservoirs with commercial success. The execution of this project was approached in phases. The first phase began in January, 1993 and consisted of planning, play identification and analysis, data acquisition, database development, and computer systems design. By the middle of 1994, many of these tasks were completed or nearly finished including the identification of all FDD reservoirs in Oklahoma, data collection, and defining play boundaries. By early 1995, a preliminary workshop schedule had been developed for project implementation and technology transfer activities. Later in 1995, the play workshop and publication series was initiated with the Morrow and the Booch plays. Concurrent with the initiation of the workshop series was the opening of a computer user lab that was developed for use by the petroleum industry. Industry response to the facility initially was slow, but after the first year lab usage began to increase and is sustaining. The remaining six play workshops were completed through 1996 and 1997, with the project ending on December 31, 1997.

  4. Environmental Impacts of Wind Power Development on the Population Biology of Greater Prairie-Chickens

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sandercock, Brett K. [Kansas State University


    Executive Summary 1. We investigated the impacts of wind power development on the demography, movements, and population genetics of Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) at three sites in northcentral and eastern Kansas for a 7-year period. Only 1 of 3 sites was developed for wind power, the 201MW Meridan Way Wind Power Facility at the Smoky Hills site in northcentral Kansas. Our project report is based on population data for prairie chickens collected during a 2-year preconstruction period (2007-2008), a 3-year postconstruction period (2009-2011) and one final year of lek surveys (2012). Where relevant, we present preconstruction data from our field studies at reference sites in the northern Flint Hills (2007-2009) and southern Flint Hills (2006-2008). 2. We addressed seven potential impacts of wind power development on prairie chickens: lek attendance, mating behavior, use of breeding habitat, fecundity rates, natal dispersal, survival rates, and population numbers. Our analyses of pre- and postconstruction impacts are based on an analysis of covariance design where we modeled population performance as a function of treatment period, distance to eventual or actual site of the nearest wind turbine, and the interaction of these factors. Our demographic and movement data from the 6-year study period at the Smoky Hills site included 23 lek sites, 251 radio-marked females monitored for 287 bird-years, and 264 nesting attempts. Our genetic data were based on genotypes of 1,760 females, males and chicks that were screened with a set of 27 microsatellite markers that were optimized in the lab. 3. In our analyses of lek attendance, the annual probability of lek persistence during the preconstruction period was ~0.9. During the postconstruction period, distance to nearest turbine did not have a significant effect on the probability of lek persistence. However, the probability of lek persistence increased from 0.69 at 0 m to 0.89 at 30 km from turbines, and most

  5. Using occupancy models to investigate the prevalence of ectoparasitic vectors on hosts: an example with fleas on prairie dogs (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Biggins, Dean E.; Doherty, Paul F.; Gage, Kenneth L.; Huyvaert, Kathryn P.; Long, Dustin H.; Antolin, Michael F.


    Ectoparasites are often difficult to detect in the field. We developed a method that can be used with occupancy models to estimate the prevalence of ectoparasites on hosts, and to investigate factors that influence rates of ectoparasite occupancy while accounting for imperfect detection. We describe the approach using a study of fleas (Siphonaptera) on black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus). During each primary occasion (monthly trapping events), we combed a prairie dog three consecutive times to detect fleas (15 s/combing). We used robust design occupancy modeling to evaluate hypotheses for factors that might correlate with the occurrence of fleas on prairie dogs, and factors that might influence the rate at which prairie dogs are colonized by fleas. Our combing method was highly effective; dislodged fleas fell into a tub of water and could not escape, and there was an estimated 99.3% probability of detecting a flea on an occupied host when using three combings. While overall detection was high, the probability of detection was always dogs, flea occupancy was heightened in old/natural colonies of prairie dogs, and on hosts that were in poor condition. Occupancy was initially low in plots with high densities of prairie dogs, but, as the study progressed, the rate of flea colonization increased in plots with high densities of prairie dogs in particular. Our methodology can be used to improve studies of ectoparasites, especially when the probability of detection is low. Moreover, the method can be modified to investigate the co-occurrence of ectoparasite species, and community level factors such as species richness and interspecific interactions.

  6. An adaptive approach to invasive plant management on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service-owned native prairies in the Prairie Pothole Region: decision support under uncertainity (United States)

    Gannon, Jill J.; Moore, Clinton T.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Flanders-Wanner, Bridgette


    Much of the native prairie managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) in the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) is extensively invaded by the introduced cool-season grasses smooth brome (Bromus inermis) and Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis). The central challenge to managers is selecting appropriate management actions in the face of biological and environmental uncertainties. We describe the technical components of a USGS management project, and explain how the components integrate and inform each other, how data feedback from individual cooperators serves to reduce uncertainty across the whole region, and how a successful adaptive management project is coordinated and maintained on a large scale. In partnership with the Service, the U.S. Geological Survey is developing an adaptive decision support framework to assist managers in selecting management actions under uncertainty and maximizing learning from management outcomes. The framework is built around practical constraints faced by refuge managers and includes identification of the management objective and strategies, analysis of uncertainty and construction of competing decision models, monitoring, and mechanisms for model feedback and decision selection. Nineteen Service field stations, spanning four states of the PPR, are participating in the project. They share a common management objective, available management strategies, and biological uncertainties. While the scope is broad, the project interfaces with individual land managers who provide refuge-specific information and receive updated decision guidance that incorporates understanding gained from the collective experience of all cooperators.

  7. Social isolation disrupts innate immune responses in both male and female prairie voles and enhances agonistic behavior in female prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). (United States)

    Scotti, Melissa-Ann L; Carlton, Elizabeth D; Demas, Gregory E; Grippo, Angela J


    Psychosocial stress, specifically social isolation, is an important risk factor for the development of a variety of psychological and physiological disorders. Changes in immune function have been hypothesized to mediate this relationship. The current study used the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster) model of isolation-induced depressive-like behavior to test whether social isolation led to changes in innate immune function. Specifically, we used hemolytic complement (CH50) and bacteria killing assays to assess innate immunity, in paired or singly housed male and female prairie voles. Further, in a second experiment we tested whether females exposed to an additional short-term social stressor, a resident-intruder trial, would show changes in immune function as well as enhanced hypothalamic pituitary axis (HPA) activity as indicated by elevated plasma corticosterone levels. Socially isolated animals, regardless of sex, had significantly reduced CH50s and bacteria killing ability. Socially isolated females exposed to a resident-intruder stressor also showed reduced CH50s and bacteria killing ability as well as significant increases in aggressive behavior, however, they did not show elevated circulating corticosterone levels. Collectively, these data will help inform our understanding of the relationship between social isolation and physiological and psychological health. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. New insights into the phylogenetics and population structure of the prairie falcon (Falco mexicanus) (United States)

    Doyle, Jacqueline M.; Bell, Douglas A.; Bloom, Peter H.; Emmons, Gavin; Fesnock, Amy; Katzner, Todd; LePre, Larry; Leonard, Kolbe; SanMiguel, Phillip; Westerman, Rick; DeWoody, J. Andrew


    BackgroundManagement requires a robust understanding of between- and within-species genetic variability, however such data are still lacking in many species. For example, although multiple population genetics studies of the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) have been conducted, no similar studies have been done of the closely-related prairie falcon (F. mexicanus) and it is unclear how much genetic variation and population structure exists across the species’ range. Furthermore, the phylogenetic relationship of F. mexicanus relative to other falcon species is contested. We utilized a genomics approach (i.e., genome sequencing and assembly followed by single nucleotide polymorphism genotyping) to rapidly address these gaps in knowledge.ResultsWe sequenced the genome of a single female prairie falcon and generated a 1.17 Gb (gigabases) draft genome assembly. We generated maximum likelihood phylogenetic trees using complete mitochondrial genomes as well as nuclear protein-coding genes. This process provided evidence that F. mexicanus is an outgroup to the clade that includes the peregrine falcon and members of the subgenus Hierofalco. We annotated > 16,000 genes and almost 600,000 high-quality single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the nuclear genome, providing the raw material for a SNP assay design featuring > 140 gene-associated markers and a molecular-sexing marker. We subsequently genotyped ~ 100 individuals from California (including the San Francisco East Bay Area, Pinnacles National Park and the Mojave Desert) and Idaho (Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area). We tested for population structure and found evidence that individuals sampled in California and Idaho represent a single panmictic population.ConclusionsOur study illustrates how genomic resources can rapidly shed light on genetic variability in understudied species and resolve phylogenetic relationships. Furthermore, we found evidence of a single, randomly mating

  9. Induced earthquakes. Sharp increase in central Oklahoma seismicity since 2008 induced by massive wastewater injection. (United States)

    Keranen, K M; Weingarten, M; Abers, G A; Bekins, B A; Ge, S


    Unconventional oil and gas production provides a rapidly growing energy source; however, high-production states in the United States, such as Oklahoma, face sharply rising numbers of earthquakes. Subsurface pressure data required to unequivocally link earthquakes to wastewater injection are rarely accessible. Here we use seismicity and hydrogeological models to show that fluid migration from high-rate disposal wells in Oklahoma is potentially responsible for the largest swarm. Earthquake hypocenters occur within disposal formations and upper basement, between 2- and 5-kilometer depth. The modeled fluid pressure perturbation propagates throughout the same depth range and tracks earthquakes to distances of 35 kilometers, with a triggering threshold of ~0.07 megapascals. Although thousands of disposal wells operate aseismically, four of the highest-rate wells are capable of inducing 20% of 2008 to 2013 central U.S. seismicity. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  10. Developing a statewide public health initiative to reduce infant mortality in Oklahoma. (United States)

    Dooley, Suzanna; Patrick, Paul; Lincoln, Alicia; Cline, Janette


    The Preparing for a Lifetime, It's Everyone's Responsibility initiative was developed to improve the health and well- being of Oklahoma's mothers and infants. The development phase included systematic data collection, extensive data analysis, and multi-disciplinary partnership development. In total, seven issues (preconception/interconception health, tobacco use, postpartum depression, breastfeeding, infant safe sleep, preterm birth, and infant injury prevention) were identified as crucial to addressing infant mortality in Oklahoma. Workgroups were created to focus on each issue. Data and media communications workgroups were added to further partner commitment and support for policy and programmatic changes across multiple agencies and programs. Leadership support, partnership, evaluation, and celebrating small successes were important factors that lead to large scale adoption and support for the state-wide initiative to reduce infant mortality.

  11. Selected Trace Metals and Organic Compounds and Bioavailability of Selected Organic Compounds in Soils, Hackberry Flat, Tillman County, Oklahoma, 1994-95

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Becker, Mark F


    .... S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with Wildlife Conservation and the Oklahoma Geological Survey, examined the soils of Hackberry Flat to determine trace metal concentrations, presence of selected...

  12. The Potential Economic Impact of Electricity Restructuring in the State of Oklahoma: Phase II Report; FINAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hadley, SW


    In April 1997, the Oklahoma legislature passed a bill to restructure the state's electric industry, requiring that the generation sector be deregulated and allowing retail competition by July 2002. Details of the market structure were to be established later. Senate Bill No.220, introduced in the 2000 legislature, provided additional details on this market, but the bill did not pass. Subsequent discussions have identified the need for an objective analysis of the impact of restructuring on electricity prices and the state's economy, especially considering the experiences of other states following restructuring of their electric systems. Because of the recent experiences of other states undergoing restructuring (e.g., higher prices, greater volatility, lower reliability), concerns have been raised in states currently considering restructuring as to whether their systems are equally vulnerable. Factors such as local generation costs, transmission constraints, market concentration, and market design can all play a role in the success or failure of the market. Energy and ancillary services markets both play a role in having a well-functioning system. Customer responsiveness to market signals can enhance the flexibility of the market. The purpose of this project is to provide a model and process to evaluate the potential price and economic impacts of restructuring the Oklahoma electric industry. The goal is to provide sufficient objective analysis to the Oklahoma legislature that they may make a more informed decision on the timing and details of any future restructuring. It will also serve to inform other stakeholders on the economic issues surrounding restructuring. The project is being conducted in two phases. The Phase I report (Hadley 2001) concentrated on providing an analysis of the Oklahoma system in the near-term, using only present generation and transmission resources. This Phase II report looks further in the future, incorporating the potential of new

  13. Oklahoma Retailers’ Perspectives on Mutual Benefit Exchange to Limit Point-of-Sale Tobacco Advertisements


    Chan, Andie; Douglas, Malinda Reddish; Ling, Pamela M.


    Businesses changing their practices in ways that support tobacco control efforts recently have gained interest, as demonstrated by CVS Health’s voluntary policy to end tobacco sales. Point of sale (POS) advertisements are associated with youth smoking initiation, increased tobacco consumption, and reduced quit attempts among smokers. There is interest in encouraging retailers to limit tobacco POS advertisements voluntarily. This qualitative exploratory study describes Oklahoma tobacco retaile...

  14. SBAS Analysis of Induced Ground Surface Deformation from Wastewater Injection in East Central Oklahoma, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Loesch


    Full Text Available The state of Oklahoma has experienced a dramatic increase in the amount of measurable seismic activities over the last decade. The needs of a petroleum-driven world have led to increased production utilizing various technologies to reach energy reserves locked in tight formations and stimulate end-of-life wells, creating significant amounts of undesirable wastewater ultimately injected underground for disposal. Using Phased Array L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR data, we performed a differential Synthetic Aperture Radar Interferometry (InSAR technique referred to as the Small BAseline Subset (SBAS-based analysis over east central Oklahoma to identify ground surface deformation with respect to the location of wastewater injection wells for the period of December 2006 to January 2011. Our results show broad spatial correlation between SBAS-derived deformation and the locations of injection wells. We also observed significant uplift over Cushing, Oklahoma, the largest above ground crude oil storage facility in the world, and a key hub of the Keystone Pipeline. This finding has significant implications for the oil and gas industry due to its close proximity to the zones of increased seismicity attributed to wastewater injection. Results southeast of Drumright, Oklahoma represent an excellent example of the potential of InSAR, identifying a fault bordered by an area of subduction to the west and uplift to the east. This differentiated movement along the fault may help explain the lack of any seismic activity in this area, despite the large number of wells and high volume of fluid injected.

  15. Deltamethrin flea-control preserves genetic variability of black-tailed prairie dogs during a plague outbreak (United States)

    Jones, P.H.; Biggins, D.E.; Eads, D.A.; Eads, S.L.; Britten, H.B.


    Genetic variability and structure of nine black-tailed prairie dog (BTPD, Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies were estimated with 15 unlinked microsatellite markers. A plague epizootic occurred between the first and second years of sampling and our study colonies were nearly extirpated with the exception of three colonies in which prairie dog burrows were previously dusted with an insecticide, deltamethrin, used to control fleas (vectors of the causative agent of plague, Yersinia pestis). This situation provided context to compare genetic variability and structure among dusted and non-dusted colonies pre-epizootic, and among the three dusted colonies pre- and post-epizootic. We found no statistical difference in population genetic structures between dusted and non-dusted colonies pre-epizootic. On dusted colonies, gene flow and recent migration rates increased from the first (pre-epizootic) year to the second (post-epizootic) year which suggested dusted colonies were acting as refugia for prairie dogs from surrounding colonies impacted by plague. Indeed, in the dusted colonies, estimated densities of adult prairie dogs (including dispersers), but not juveniles (non-dispersers), increased from the first year to the second year. In addition to preserving BTPDs and many species that depend on them, protecting colonies with deltamethrin or a plague vaccine could be an effective method to preserve genetic variability of prairie dogs. ?? 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  16. Valuing ecosystem and economic services across land-use scenarios in the Prairie Pothole Regions of the Dakotas, USA (United States)

    Gascoigne, William R.; Hoag, Dana; Koontz, Lynne; Tangen, Brian A.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Gleason, Robert A.


    This study uses biophysical values derived for the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of North and South Dakota, in conjunction with value transfer methods, to assess environmental and economic tradeoffs under different policy-relevant land-use scenarios over a 20-year period. The ecosystem service valuation is carried out by comparing the biophysical and economic values of three focal services (i.e. carbon sequestration, reduction in sedimentation, and waterfowl production) across three focal land uses in the region [i.e. native prairie grasslands, lands enrolled in the Conservation Reserve and Wetlands Reserve Programs (CRP/WRP), and cropland]. This study finds that CRP/WRP lands cannot mitigate (hectare for hectare) the loss of native prairie from a social welfare standpoint. Land use scenarios where native prairie loss was minimized, and CRP/WRP lands were increased, provided the most societal benefit. The scenario modeling projected native prairie conversion to cropland over the next 20 years would result in a social welfare loss valued at over $4 billion when considering the study's three ecosystem services, and a net loss of about $3.4 billion when reductions in commodity production are accounted for.

  17. Age at Vaccination May Influence Response to Sylvatic Plague Vaccine (SPV) in Gunnison's Prairie Dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni). (United States)

    Rocke, Tonie E; Tripp, Dan; Lorenzsonn, Faye; Falendysz, Elizabeth; Smith, Susan; Williamson, Judy; Abbott, Rachel


    Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) have been considered at greater risk from Yersinia pestis (plague) infection in the montane portion of their range compared to populations at lower elevations, possibly due to factors related to flea transmission of the bacteria or greater host susceptibility. To test the latter hypothesis and determine whether vaccination against plague with an oral sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) improved survival, we captured prairie dogs from a C. g. gunnisoni or "montane" population and a C. g. zuniensis or "prairie" population for vaccine efficacy and challenge studies. No differences (P = 0.63) were found in plague susceptibility in non-vaccinated animals between these two populations; however, vaccinates from the prairie population survived plague challenge at significantly higher rates (P plague challenge at a much higher rate than adults (P plague in the C. g. gunnisoni or "montane" populations of Gunnison's prairie dogs, and that SPV could be a useful plague management tool for this species, particularly if targeted at younger cohorts.


    Tripp, Daniel W; Streich, Sean P; Sack, Danielle A; Martin, Daniel J; Griffin, Karen A; Miller, Michael W


    In 2008 and 2009, we evaluated the duration of prophylactic deltamethrin treatments in white-tailed prairie dog ( Cynomys leucurus ) colonies and compared effects of autumn or spring dust application in suppressing flea numbers and plague. Plague occurred before and during our experiment. Overall, flea abundance tended to increase from May or June to September, but it was affected by deltamethrin treatment and plague dynamics. Success in trapping prairie dogs (animals caught/trap days) declined between June and September at all study sites. However, by September trap success on dusted sites (19%; 95% confidence interval [CI] 16-22%) was about 15-fold greater than on undusted control sites (1%; CI 0.3-4%; P≤0.0001). Applying deltamethrin dust as early as 12 mo prior seemed to afford some protection to prairie dogs. Our data showed that dusting even a portion of a prairie dog colony can prolong its persistence despite epizootic plague. Autumn dusting may offer advantages over spring in suppressing overwinter or early-spring flea activity, but timing should be adjusted to precede the annual decline in aboveground activity for hibernating prairie dog species. Large colony complexes or collections of occupied but fragmented habitat may benefit from dusting some sites in spring and others in autumn to maximize flea suppression in a portion of the complex or habitat year-round.

  19. Use of vegetation sampling and analysis to detect a problem within a portion of a prairie restoration project. (United States)

    Franson, Raymond; Scholes, Chad; Krabbe, Stephen


    In June 2005, the Department of Energy (DOE) began establishing the 60-ha Howell Prairie around the disposal cell at the DOE Weldon Spring Site (WSS). Prairies were historically present in the area of the site. Quantitative Cover sampling was used to quantify Total Cover, Native Grass Cover, Non-Native Grass Cover, Native Forb Cover, Non-Native Forb Cover, Warm Season (C 4 Grass), Cool Season (C 3 Grass), Perennial Cover and Annual Cover, Litter, and Bare Ground. Four permanent vegetation sampling plots were established. The first 4 years of vegetation measurements at Howell Prairie were made during above-average rainfall years on burned and unburned plots. The fifth-year (2012) vegetation measurements were made after below-average rainfall. Five years of results not only document the consistency of the restoration effort in three areas, but also demonstrate deficiencies in Grass Cover in a fourth area. The results are not only useful for Howell Prairie, but will be useful for restoration work throughout the region. Restoration work suffers from a lack of success monitoring and in this case from a lack of available reference areas. Floristic Quality Indices are used to make qualitative comparisons of the site to Konza Prairie sites.

  20. Long-term prairie falcon population changes in relation to prey abundance, weather, land uses, and habitat conditions (United States)

    Steenhof, Karen; Kochert, Michael N.; Carpenter, L.B.; Lehman, Robert N.


    We studied a nesting population of Prairie Falcons (Falco mexicanus) in the Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area (NCA) from 1974-1997 to identify factors that influence abundance and reproduction. Our sampling period included two major droughts and associated crashes in Townsend's ground squirrel (Spermophilus townsendii) populations. The number of Prairie Falcon pairs found on long-term survey segments declined significantly from 1976-1997. Early declines were most severe at the eastern end of the NCA, where fires and agriculture have changed native shrubsteppe habitat. More recent declines occurred in the portion of canyon near the Orchard Training Area (OTA), where the Idaho Army National Guard conducts artillery firing and tank maneuvers. Overall Prairie Falcon reproductive rates were tied closely to annual indexes of ground squirrel abundance, but precipitation before and during the breeding season was related inversely to some measures of reproduction. Most reproductive parameters showed no significant trends over time, but during the 1990s, nesting success and productivity were lower in the stretch of canyon near the OTA than in adjacent areas. Extensive shrub loss, by itself, did not explain the pattern of declines in abundance and reproduction that we observed. Recent military training activities likely have interacted with fire and livestock grazing to create less than favorable foraging opportunities for Prairie Falcons in a large part of the NCA. To maintain Prairie Falcon populations in the NCA, managers should suppress wildfires, restore native plant communities, and regulate potentially incompatible land uses.

  1. Age at vaccination may influence response to sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) in Gunnison’s prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) (United States)

    Rocke, Tonie E.; Tripp, Daniel W.; Lorenzsonn, Faye; Falendysz, Elizabeth A.; Smith, Susan; Williamson, Judy L.; Abbott, Rachel C.


    Gunnison’s prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) have been considered at greater risk from Yersinia pestis (plague) infection in the montane portion of their range compared to populations at lower elevations, possibly due to factors related to flea transmission of the bacteria or greater host susceptibility. To test the latter hypothesis and determine whether vaccination against plague with an oral sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) improved survival, we captured prairie dogs from a C. g. gunnisoni or “montane” population and a C. g. zuniensis or “prairie” population for vaccine efficacy and challenge studies. No differences (P = 0.63) were found in plague susceptibility in non-vaccinated animals between these two populations; however, vaccinates from the prairie population survived plague challenge at significantly higher rates (P age, as the prairie group was much younger on average than the montane group. Vaccinates that were juveniles or young adults survived plague challenge at a much higher rate than adults (P ages. These results suggest that host susceptibility is probably not related to the assumed greater risk from plague in the C. g. gunnisoni or “montane” populations of Gunnison’s prairie dogs, and that SPV could be a useful plague management tool for this species, particularly if targeted at younger cohorts.

  2. Empirical Ground Motion Characterization of Induced Seismicity in Alberta and Oklahoma (United States)

    Novakovic, M.; Atkinson, G. M.; Assatourians, K.


    We develop empirical ground-motion prediction equations (GMPEs) for ground motions from induced earthquakes in Alberta and Oklahoma following the stochastic-model-based method of Atkinson et al. (2015 BSSA). The Oklahoma ground-motion database is compiled from over 13,000 small to moderate seismic events (M 1 to 5.8) recorded at 1600 seismic stations, at distances from 1 to 750 km. The Alberta database is compiled from over 200 small to moderate seismic events (M 1 to 4.2) recorded at 50 regional stations, at distances from 30 to 500 km. A generalized inversion is used to solve for regional source, attenuation and site parameters. The obtained parameters describe the regional attenuation, stress parameter and site amplification. Resolving these parameters allows for the derivation of regionally-calibrated GMPEs that can be used to compare ground motion observations between waste water injection (Oklahoma) and hydraulic fracture induced events (Alberta), and further compare induced observations with ground motions resulting from natural sources (California, NGAWest2). The derived GMPEs have applications for the evaluation of hazards from induced seismicity and can be used to track amplitudes across the regions in real time, which is useful for ground-motion-based alerting systems and traffic light protocols.

  3. Flea abundance, diversity, and plague in Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) and their burrows in montane grasslands in northern New Mexico (United States)

    Megan M. Friggens; Robert R. Parmenter; Michael Boyden; Paulette L. Ford; Kenneth Gage; Paul Keim


    Plague, a flea-transmitted infectious disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, is a primary threat to the persistence of prairie dog populations (Cynomys spp.). We conducted a 3-yr survey (2004-2006) of fleas from Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) and their burrows in montane grasslands in Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico. Our...

  4. Land-use change, economics, and rural well-being in the Prairie Pothole Region of the United States (United States)

    Gascoigne, William R.; Hoag, Dana L.K.; Johnson, Rex R.; Koontz, Lynne M.; Thomas, Catherine Cullinane


    This fact sheet highlights findings included in a comprehensive new report (see USGS Professional Paper 1800) which investigated land-use change, economic characteristics, and rural community well-being in the Prairie Pothole Region of the United States. Once one of the largest grassland-wetlands ecosystems on earth, the North American prairie has experienced extensive conversion to cultivated agriculture, with farming becoming the dominant land use in the region over the last century. Both perennial habitat lands and agricultural croplands retain importance economically, socially, and culturally. Greatly increased oil and gas development in recent years brought rises in employment and income but also stressed infrastructure, cost of living, and crime rates. Research described in these reports focuses on land-use dynamics and illuminates how economic variables and rural development in the Prairie Pothole Region might be influenced as land uses change.

  5. Black-footed ferrets and recreational shooting influence the attributes of black-tailed prairie dog burrows (United States)

    Biggins, Dean E.; Ramakrishnan, Shantini; Goldberg, Amanda R.; Eads, David A.


    Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) plug burrows occupied by black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes), and they also plug burrows to entomb dead prairie dogs. We further evaluated these phenomena by sampling connectivity and plugging of burrow openings on prairie dog colonies occupied by ferrets, colonies where recreational shooting was allowed, and colonies with neither shooting nor ferrets. We counted burrow openings on line surveys and within plots, classified surface plugging, and used an air blower to examine subsurface connectivity. Colonies with ferrets had lower densities of openings, fewer connected openings (suggesting increased subsurface plugging), and more surface plugs compared to colonies with no known ferrets. Colonies with recreational shooting had the lowest densities of burrow openings, and line-survey data suggested colonies with shooting had intermediate rates of surface plugging. The extent of surface and subsurface plugging could have consequences for the prairie dog community by changing air circulation and escape routes of burrow systems and by altering energetic relationships. Burrow plugging might reduce prairie dogs' risk of predation by ferrets while increasing risk of predation by American badgers (Taxidea taxus); however, the complexity of the trade-off is increased if plugging increases the risk of predation on ferrets by badgers. Prairie dogs expend more energy plugging and digging when ferrets or shooting are present, and ferrets increase their energy expenditures when they dig to remove those plugs. Microclimatic differences in plugged burrow systems may play a role in flea ecology and persistence of the flea-borne bacterium that causes plague (Yersinia pestis).

  6. Nesting ecology and nest survival of lesser prairie-chickens on the Southern High Plains of Texas (United States)

    Grisham, Blake A.; Borsdorf, Philip K.; Boal, Clint W.; Boydston, Kathy K.


    The decline in population and range of lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) throughout the central and southern Great Plains has raised concerns considering their candidate status under the United States Endangered Species Act. Baseline ecological data for lesser prairie-chickens are limited, especially for the shinnery oak-grassland communities of Texas. This information is imperative because lesser prairie-chickens in shinnery oak grasslands occur at the extreme southwestern edge of their distribution. This geographic region is characterized by hot, arid climates, less fragmentation, and less anthropogenic development than within the remaining core distribution of the species. Thus, large expanses of open rangeland with less anthropogenic development and a climate that is classified as extreme for ground nesting birds may subsequently influence nest ecology, nest survival, and nest site selection differently compared to the rest of the distribution of the species. We investigated the nesting ecology of 50 radio-tagged lesser prairie-chicken hens from 2008 to 2011 in the shinnery oak-grassland communities in west Texas and found a substantial amount of inter-annual variation in incubation start date and percent of females incubating nests. Prairie-chickens were less likely to nest near unimproved roads and utility poles and in areas with more bare ground and litter. In contrast, hens selected areas dominated by grasses and shrubs and close to stock tanks to nest. Candidate models including visual obstruction best explained daily nest survival; a 5% increase in visual obstruction improved nest survival probability by 10%. The model-averaged probability of a nest surviving the incubation period was 0.43 (SE = 0.006; 95% CI: 0.23, 0.56). Our findings indicate that lesser prairie-chicken reproduction during our study period was dynamic and was correlated with seasonal weather patterns that ultimately promoted greater grass growth earlier in the

  7. Regional differences in mu and kappa opioid receptor G-protein activation in brain in male and female prairie voles. (United States)

    Martin, T J; Sexton, T; Kim, S A; Severino, A L; Peters, C M; Young, L J; Childers, S R


    Prairie voles are unusual mammals in that, like humans, they are capable of forming socially monogamous pair bonds, display biparental care, and engage in alloparental behaviors. Both mu and kappa opioid receptors are involved in behaviors that either establish and maintain, or result from pair bond formation in these animals. Mu and kappa opioid receptors both utilize inhibitory G-proteins in signal transduction mechanisms, however the efficacy by which these receptor subtypes stimulate G-protein signaling across the prairie vole neuraxis is not known. Utilizing [(35)S]GTPγS autoradiography, we characterized the efficacy of G-protein stimulation in coronal sections throughout male and female prairie vole brains by [D-Ala2,NMe-Phe4,Gly-ol5]-enkephalin (DAMGO) and U50,488H, selective mu and kappa opioid agonists, respectively. DAMGO stimulation was highest in the forebrain, similar to that found with other rodent species. U-50,488H produced greater stimulation in prairie voles than is typically seen in mice and rats, particularly in select forebrain areas. DAMGO produced higher stimulation in the core versus the shell of the nucleus accumbens (NAc) in females, while the distribution of U-50,488H stimulation was the opposite. There were no gender differences for U50,488H stimulation of G-protein activity across the regions examined, while DAMGO stimulation was greater in sections from females compared to those from males for NAc core, entopeduncular nucleus, and hippocampus. These data suggest that the kappa opioid system may be more sensitive to manipulation in prairie voles compared to mice and rats, and that female prairie voles may be more sensitive to mu agonists in select brain regions than males. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Forage preferences in two species of prairie dog (Cynomys parvidens and Cynomus ludovicianus): Implications for hibernation and facultative heterothermy (United States)

    Lehmer, E.M.; Biggins, D.E.; Antolin, M.F.


    Several laboratory studies have shown that the ingestion of dietary linoleic (18:2 ??6) acid before winter can promote deep and continuous torpor, whereas excess consumption of ??-linolenic acid (18:3 ??3) can interfere with an animal's ability to reach and maintain low body temperatures during torpor. As mammalian heterotherms obtain linoleic and ??-linolenic acid strictly from the diet, diet selection has been proposed as a mechanism that allows hibernators to ingest levels of linoleic and ??-linolenic acid that promote favorable torpor patterns. Here diet, dietary nutrient content and patterns of forage preference of a representative hibernator, the Utah prairie dog Cynomys parvidens, and a facultative heterotherm, the black-tailed prairie dog Cynomys ludovicianus, were examined under natural field conditions. Diets of black-tailed (BTPD) and Utah prairie dogs (UTPD) differed across seasons (BTPD F26,108=9.59, Pplant species relative to their abundance on colonies in any season. Black-tailed prairie dogs did not consume or avoid consumption of plant species based on levels of total lipids, linoleic acid, ??-linolenic acid or nitrogen. Considering only the plants consumed, black-tailed prairie dogs appeared to prefer plants with low levels of ??-linolenic acid (F1,19=5.81, P=0.03), but there were no detectable relationships between preference and other nutrients. Utah prairie dogs consumed plants higher in ??-linolenic acid (t=1.98, P=0.05) and avoided plants high in linoleic acid (t=-2.02, P=0.04), but consumption-avoidance decisions did not appear to be related to nitrogen or total lipids. Of the plants consumed, Utah prairie dogs again preferred plants high in ??-linolenic acid (F1,17=4.62, P=0.05). Levels of linoleic and ??-linolenic acid were positively correlated in plants consumed by prairie dogs (BTPD Pearson r=0.66, P<0.01; UTPD Pearson r=0.79, P<0.01), reducing the opportunity for independent selection of either lipid. ?? 2006 The Authors.

  9. Autonomic substrates of the response to pups in male prairie voles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William M Kenkel

    Full Text Available Caregiving by nonparents (alloparenting and fathers is a defining aspect of human social behavior, yet this phenomenon is rare among mammals. Male prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster spontaneously exhibit high levels of alloparental care, even in the absence of reproductive experience. In previous studies, exposure to a pup was selectively associated with increased activity in oxytocin and vasopressin neurons along with decreased plasma corticosterone. In the present study, physiological, pharmacological and neuroanatomical methods were used to explore the autonomic and behavioral consequences of exposing male prairie voles to a pup. Reproductively naïve, adult male prairie voles were implanted with radiotransmitters used for recording ECG, temperature and activity. Males responded with a sustained increase in heart-rate during pup exposure. This prolonged increase in heart rate was not explained by novelty, locomotion or thermoregulation. Although heart rate was elevated during pup exposure, respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA did not differ between these males and males exposed to control stimuli indicating that vagal inhibition of the heart was maintained. Blockade of beta-adrenergic receptors with atenolol abolished the pup-induced heart rate increase, implicating sympathetic activity in the pup-induced increase in heart rate. Blockade of vagal input to the heart delayed the males' approach to the pup. Increased activity in brainstem autonomic regulatory nuclei was also observed in males exposed to pups. Together, these findings suggest that exposure to a pup activates both vagal and sympathetic systems. This unique physiological state (i.e. increased sympathetic excitation of the heart, while maintaining some vagal cardiac tone associated with male caregiving behavior may allow males to both nurture and protect infants.

  10. Cover Image Identification of Plant Species for Crop Pollinator Habitat Enhancement in the Northern Prairies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana Bizecki Robson


    Full Text Available Wild pollinators have a positive impact on the productivity of insect-pollinated crops. Consequently, landowners are being encouraged to maintain and grow wildflower patches to provide habitat for important pollinators. Research on plant-pollinator interaction matrices indicates that a small number of “core” plants provide a disproportionately high amount of pollen and nectar to insects. This matrix data can be used to help design wildflower plantings that provide optimal resources for desirable pollinators. Existing interaction matrices from three tall grass prairie preserves in the northern prairies were used to identify core plant species that are visited by wild pollinators of a common insect-pollinated crop, namely canola (Brassica napus L.. The wildflower preferences of each insect taxon were determined using quantitative insect visitation and floral abundance data. Phenology data were used to calculate the degree of floral synchrony between the wildflowers and canola. Using this information I ranked the 41 wildflowers that share insect visitors with canola according to how useful they are for providing pollinators with forage before and after canola flowers. The top five species were smooth blue aster (Symphyotrichum laeve (L. A. & D. Löve, stiff goldenrod (Solidago rigida L., wild bergamot (Monarda fistulosa L., purple prairie-clover (Dalea purpurea Vent. and Lindley’s aster (Symphyotrichum ciliolatum (Lindl. A. & D. Löve. By identifying the most important wild insects for crop pollination, and determining when there will be “pollen and nectar gaps”, appropriate plant species can be selected for companion plantings to increase pollinator populations and crop production.

  11. Evaluation of capture techniques on lesser prairie-chicken trap injury and survival (United States)

    Grisham, Blake A.; Boal, Clint W.; Mitchell, Natasia R.; Gicklhorn, Trevor S.; Borsdorf, Philip K.; Haukos, David A.; Dixon, Charles


    Ethical treatment of research animals is required under the Animal Welfare Act. This includes trapping methodologies that reduce unnecessary pain and duress. Traps used in research should optimize animal welfare conditions within the context of the proposed research study. Several trapping techniques are used in the study of lesser prairie-chickens, despite lack of knowledge of trap injury caused by the various methods. From 2006 to 2012, we captured 217, 40, and 144 lesser prairie-chickens Tympanuchus pallidicinctus using walk-in funnel traps, rocket nets, and drop nets, respectively, in New Mexico and Texas, to assess the effects of capture technique on injury and survival of the species. We monitored radiotagged, injured lesser prairie-chickens 7–65 d postcapture to assess survival rates of injured individuals. Injuries occurred disproportionately among trap type, injury type, and sex. The predominant injuries were superficial cuts to the extremities of males captured in walk-in funnel traps. However, we observed no mortalities due to trapping, postcapture survival rates of injured birds did not vary across trap types, and the daily survival probability of an injured and uninjured bird was ≥99%. Frequency and intensity of injuries in walk-in funnel traps are due to the passive nature of these traps (researcher cannot select specific individuals for capture) and incidental capture of individuals not needed for research. Comparatively, rocket nets and drop nets allow observers to target birds for capture and require immediate removal of captured individuals from the trap. Based on our results, trap injuries would be reduced if researchers monitor and immediately remove birds from walk-in funnels before they injure themselves; move traps to target specific birds and reduce recaptures; limit the number of consecutive trapping days on a lek; and use proper netting techniques that incorporate quick, efficient, trained handling procedures.

  12. Social isolation induces behavioral and neuroendocrine disturbances relevant to depression in female and male prairie voles. (United States)

    Grippo, Angela J; Gerena, Davida; Huang, Jonathan; Kumar, Narmda; Shah, Maulin; Ughreja, Raj; Carter, C Sue


    Supportive social interactions may be protective against stressors and certain mental and physical illness, while social isolation may be a powerful stressor. Prairie voles are socially monogamous rodents that model some of the behavioral and physiological traits displayed by humans, including sensitivity to social isolation. Neuroendocrine and behavioral parameters, selected for their relevance to stress and depression, were measured in adult female and male prairie voles following 4 weeks of social isolation versus paired housing. In Experiment 1, oxytocin-immunoreactive cell density was higher in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) and plasma oxytocin was elevated in isolated females, but not in males. In Experiment 2, sucrose intake, used as an operational definition of hedonia, was reduced in both sexes following 4 weeks of isolation. Animals then received a resident-intruder test, and were sacrificed either 10 min later for the analysis of circulating hormones and peptides, or 2h later to examine neural activation, indexed by c-Fos expression in PVN cells immunoreactive for oxytocin or corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF). Compared to paired animals, plasma oxytocin, ACTH and corticosterone were elevated in isolated females and plasma oxytocin was elevated in isolated males, following the resident-intruder test. The proportion of cells double-labeled for c-Fos and oxytocin or c-Fos and CRF was elevated in isolated females, and the proportion of cells double-labeled for c-Fos and oxytocin was elevated in isolated males following this test. These findings suggest that social isolation induces behavioral and neuroendocrine responses relevant to depression in male and female prairie voles, although neuroendocrine responses in females may be especially sensitive to isolation.

  13. Life cycle assessment of camelina oil derived biodiesel and jet fuel in the Canadian Prairies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Xue; Mupondwa, Edmund


    This study evaluated the environmental impact of biodiesel and hydroprocessed renewable jet fuel derived from camelina oil in terms of global warming potential, human health, ecosystem quality, and energy resource consumption. The life cycle inventory is based on production activities in the Canadian Prairies and encompasses activities ranging from agricultural production to oil extraction and fuel conversion. The system expansion method is used in this study to avoid allocation and to credit input energy to co-products associated with the products displaced in the market during camelina oil extraction and fuel processing. This is the preferred allocation method for LCA analysis in the context of most renewable and sustainable energy programs. The results show that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from 1 MJ of camelina derived biodiesel ranged from 7.61 to 24.72 g CO 2 equivalent and 3.06 to 31.01 kg CO 2 /MJ equivalent for camelina HRJ fuel. Non-renewable energy consumption for camelina biodiesel ranged from 0.40 to 0.67 MJ/MJ; HRJ fuel ranged from − 0.13 to 0.52 MJ/MJ. Camelina oil as a feedstock for fuel production accounted for the highest contribution to overall environmental performance, demonstrating the importance of reducing environmental burdens during the agricultural production process. Attaining higher seed yield would dramatically lower environmental impacts associated with camelina seed, oil, and fuel production. The lower GHG emissions and energy consumption associated with camelina in comparison with other oilseed derived fuel and petroleum fuel make camelina derived fuel from Canadian Prairies environmentally attractive. - Highlights: • LCA of camelina-derived biodiesel and jet fuel was based on the Canadian Prairies. • Overall, camelina-derived biodiesel had lower GHG emissions than is biojet fuel. • Camelina jet fuel had lower non-renewable energy (NRE) use than its biodiesel. • Camelina biofuels reduced GHG emissions and NRE use

  14. Modelling of seasonal dynamics of Wetland-Groundwater flow interaction in the Canadian Prairies (United States)

    Ali, Melkamu; Nussbaumer, Raphaël; Ireson, Andrew; Keim, Dawn


    Wetland-shallow groundwater interaction is studied at the St. Denis National Wildlife Area in Saskatchewan, Canada, located within the northern glaciated prairies of North America. Ponds in the Canadian Prairies are intermittently connected by fill-spill processes in the spring and growing season of some wetter years. The contribution of the ponds and wetlands to groundwater is still a significant research challenge. The objective of this study is to evaluate model's ability to reproduce observed effects of groundwater-wetland interactions including seasonal pattern of shallow groundwater table, intended flow direction and to quantify the depression induced infiltration from the wetland to the surrounding uplands. The integrated surface-wetland-shallow groundwater processes and the changes in land-energy and water balances caused by the flow interaction are simulated using ParFlow-CLM at a small watershed of 1km2 containing both permanent and seasonal wetland complexes. We compare simulated water table depth with piezometers reading monitored by level loggers at the watershed. We also present the strengths and limitations of the model in reproducing observed behaviour of the groundwater table response to the spring snowmelt and summer rainfall. Simulations indicate that the shallow water table at the uphill recovers quickly after major rainfall events in early summer that generates lateral flow to the pond. In late summer, the wetland supplies water to the surrounding upland when the evapotranspiration is higher than the precipitation in which more water from the root zone is up taken by plants. Results also show that Parflow-CLM is able to reasonably simulate the water table patterns response to summer rainfall, while it is insufficient to reproduce the spring snowmelt infiltration which is the most dominant hydrological process in the Prairies.

  15. Life cycle assessment of camelina oil derived biodiesel and jet fuel in the Canadian Prairies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Xue; Mupondwa, Edmund, E-mail:


    This study evaluated the environmental impact of biodiesel and hydroprocessed renewable jet fuel derived from camelina oil in terms of global warming potential, human health, ecosystem quality, and energy resource consumption. The life cycle inventory is based on production activities in the Canadian Prairies and encompasses activities ranging from agricultural production to oil extraction and fuel conversion. The system expansion method is used in this study to avoid allocation and to credit input energy to co-products associated with the products displaced in the market during camelina oil extraction and fuel processing. This is the preferred allocation method for LCA analysis in the context of most renewable and sustainable energy programs. The results show that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from 1 MJ of camelina derived biodiesel ranged from 7.61 to 24.72 g CO{sub 2} equivalent and 3.06 to 31.01 kg CO{sub 2}/MJ equivalent for camelina HRJ fuel. Non-renewable energy consumption for camelina biodiesel ranged from 0.40 to 0.67 MJ/MJ; HRJ fuel ranged from − 0.13 to 0.52 MJ/MJ. Camelina oil as a feedstock for fuel production accounted for the highest contribution to overall environmental performance, demonstrating the importance of reducing environmental burdens during the agricultural production process. Attaining higher seed yield would dramatically lower environmental impacts associated with camelina seed, oil, and fuel production. The lower GHG emissions and energy consumption associated with camelina in comparison with other oilseed derived fuel and petroleum fuel make camelina derived fuel from Canadian Prairies environmentally attractive. - Highlights: • LCA of camelina-derived biodiesel and jet fuel was based on the Canadian Prairies. • Overall, camelina-derived biodiesel had lower GHG emissions than is biojet fuel. • Camelina jet fuel had lower non-renewable energy (NRE) use than its biodiesel. • Camelina biofuels reduced GHG emissions and NRE

  16. Early Intranasal Vasopressin Administration Impairs Partner Preference in Adult Male Prairie Voles (Microtus ochrogaster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trenton C. Simmons


    Full Text Available Research supports a modulatory role for arginine vasopressin (AVP in the expression of socially motivated behaviors in mammals. The acute effects of AVP administration are demonstrably pro-social across species, providing the justification for an ever-increasing measure of clinical interest over the last decade. Combining these results with non-invasive intranasal delivery results in an attractive system for offering intranasal AVP (IN-AVP as a therapeutic for the social impairments of children with autism spectrum disorder. But, very little is known about the long-term effects of IN-AVP during early development. In this experiment, we explored whether a single week of early juvenile administration of IN-AVP (low = 0.05 IU/kg, medium = 0.5 IU/kg, high = 5.0 IU/kg could impact behavior across life in prairie voles. We found increases in fecal boli production during open field and novel object recognition testing for the medium dose in both males and females. Medium-dose females also had significantly more play bouts than control when exposed to novel conspecifics during the juvenile period. Following sexual maturity, the medium and high doses of IN-AVP blocked partner preference formation in males, while no such impairment was found for any of the experimental groups in females. Finally, the high-dose selectively increased adult male aggression with novel conspecifics, but only after extended cohabitation with a mate. Our findings confirm that a single week of early IN-AVP treatment can have organizational effects on behavior across life in prairie voles. Specifically, the impairments in pair-bonding behavior experienced by male prairie voles should raise caution when the prosocial effects of acute IN-AVP demonstrated in other studies are extrapolated to long-term treatment.

  17. Plasma progesterone levels and corpus luteum morphology in the female prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus). (United States)

    Foreman, D; Garris, D


    Plasma progesterone levels in female prairie dogs were determined by a radioimmunoassay specific for progesterone. Plasma progesterone levels were determined in samples taken before estrus, at estrus, during the luteal phase, and during anestrus from females maintained all year in the laboratory. Progesterone levels were also determined in plasma samples taken in the laboratory from two pregnant and three postparturient females captured in the field. Progesterone levels were low before estrus and continued low during estrus. They rose on the first week after estrus to 0.8 ng/ml or above and continued at or above this level for 9-14 weeks following estrus. Gestation in prairie dogs is 35 days in this species. Progesterone levels of three postparturient females were above 1.0 ng/ml for 7 weeks after their arrival in the laboratory. These females all had uterine scars showing that they had delivered their litters before they were captured. Two females were determined to be pregnant at the time of their capture. These females later reabsorbed their fetuses (determined by laparotomy). Progesterone values of samples from these females were all above 1.0 ng/ml except for one low value in one female which occurred 3 weeks after her capture and after reabsorption of her fetuses was in progress. The cells of the corpus lutea (CL) of nonpregnant, pregnant, and postparturient females had well-developed rings of cytoplasmic basophilia but as the CL regressed this pattern became disorganized and disappeared. The function of this basophilia is not known. The long luteal phase found in female prairie dogs is compared to those found in other species of mammals. This is the first annually breeding rodent reported to have a longer luteal phase that the period of gestation.

  18. Monkeypox disease transmission in an experimental setting: prairie dog animal model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina L Hutson

    Full Text Available Monkeypox virus (MPXV is considered the most significant human public health threat in the genus Orthopoxvirus since the eradication of variola virus (the causative agent of smallpox. MPXV is a zoonotic agent endemic to forested areas of Central and Western Africa. In 2003, MPXV caused an outbreak in the United States due to the importation of infected African rodents, and subsequent sequential infection of North American prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus and humans. In previous studies, the prairie dog MPXV model has successfully shown to be very useful for understanding MPXV since the model emulates key characteristics of human monkeypox disease. In humans, percutaneous exposure to animals has been documented but the primary method of human-to-human MPXV transmission is postulated to be by respiratory route. Only a few animal model studies of MPXV transmission have been reported. Herein, we show that MPXV infected prairie dogs are able to transmit the virus to naive animals through multiple transmission routes. All secondarily exposed animals were infected with MPXV during the course of the study. Notably, animals secondarily exposed appeared to manifest more severe disease; however, the disease course was very similar to those of experimentally challenged animals including inappetence leading to weight loss, development of lesions, production of orthopoxvirus antibodies and shedding of similar levels or in some instances higher levels of MPXV from the oral cavity. Disease was transmitted via exposure to contaminated bedding, co-housing, or respiratory secretions/nasal mucous (we could not definitively say that transmission occurred via respiratory route exclusively. Future use of the model will allow us to evaluate infection control measures, vaccines and antiviral strategies to decrease disease transmission.

  19. Use of Rhodamine B as a biomarker for oral plague vaccination of prairie dogs (United States)

    Fernandez, Julia Rodriguez-Ramos; Rocke, Tonie E.


    Oral vaccination against Yersinia pestis could provide a feasible approach for controlling plague in prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) for conservation and public health purposes. Biomarkers are useful in wildlife vaccination programs to demonstrate exposure to vaccine baits. Rhodamine B (RB) was tested as a potential biomarker for oral plague vaccination because it allows nonlethal sampling of animals through hair, blood, and feces. We found that RB is an appropriate marker for bait uptake studies of C. ludovicianus) when used at concentrations 10 mg RB per kg target animal mass. Whiskers with follicles provided the best sample for RB detection.

  20. Conflicting research on the demography, ecology, and social behavior of Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) (United States)

    Hoogland, John L.; Cully, Jack F.; Rayor, Linda S.; Fitzgerald, James P.


    Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) are rare, diurnal, colonial, burrowing, ground-dwelling squirrels. Studies of marked individuals living under natural conditions in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s showed that males are heavier than females throughout the year; that adult females living in the same territory are consistently close kin; and that females usually mate with the sexually mature male(s) living in the home territory. Research from 2007 through 2010 challenges all 3 of these findings. Here we discuss how different methods might have led to the discrepancies.

  1. Transformation of Chlorpyrifos and Chlorpyrifos-Methyl in Prairie Pothole Porewaters (United States)

    Anderson, R. M.; Chin, Y. P.


    The prairie pothole region (PPR) extends over approximately 700,000 km2 in the Great Plains region in United States and Canada and is a critical breeding ground for migratory waterfowl, as well as an important ecosystem for diverse invertebrates and aquatic plants (van der Valk, 2003). Consisting of up to 12 million permanent and temporary depressional wetlands, the PPR is negatively impacted by non-point source pesticide pollution due to extensive agricultural development in the region. Recent studies have shown that high (mM) levels of sulfate in the pothole lakes are capable of abiotically reducing dinitroaniline and chloroacetanilide pesticides (Zeng, 2011; Zeng, 2012). In this study the transformation of the organophosphorus pesticide chlorpyrifos (CP) and its analog chlorpyrifos-methyl (CPM) was studied using pore waters sampled from two pothole lakes. CP and CPM have been found to react in the laboratory with sulfur species via a SN2 mechanism, with degradation by sulfur compounds occurring faster than hydrolysis at high pH (Wu, 2006). To date the reaction of CP and CPM in natural environments with sulfur species has not been studied. Chlorpyrifos-methyl underwent rapid degradation in the presence of reduced sulfur species in pore water, while chlorpyrifos degradation occurred at significantly slower rates. Both CP and CPM degradation occurred at comparable rates to what has been previously observed in the laboratory (Wu, 2006). References van der Valk, Arnold G., and Roger L. Pederson. "The SWANCC decision and its implications for prairie potholes." Wetlands 23.3 (2003): 590-596. Wu, Tong, Qiu Gan, and Urs Jans. "Nucleophilic Substitution of Phosphorothionate Ester Pesticides with Bisulfide (HS-) and Polysulfides (Sn2-)." Environmental science & technology 40.17 (2006): 5428-5434. Zeng, Teng, et al. "Pesticide processing potential in prairie pothole porewaters."Environmental science & technology 45.16 (2011): 6814-6822. Zeng, Teng, Yu-Ping Chin, and William

  2. Chlorophacinone residues in mammalian prey at a black-tailed prairie dog colony (United States)

    Vyas, Nimish B.; Hulse, Craig S.; Rice, Clifford P.


    Black-tailed prairie dogs (BTPDs), Cynomys ludovicianus, are an important prey for raptors; therefore, the use of the rodenticide Rozol (0.005% chlorophacinone active ingredient) to control BTPDs raises concern for secondary poisonings resulting from the consumption of contaminated prey by raptors. In the present study, the authors observed Rozol exposure and adverse effects to mammalian prey on 11 of 12 search days of the study. Mammalian hepatic chlorophacinone residues ranged from 0.44 to 7.56 µg/g. Poisoned prey availability was greater than previously reported.

  3. Spatially explicit modeling of lesser prairie-chicken lek density in Texas (United States)

    Timmer, Jennifer M.; Butler, M.J.; Ballard, Warren; Boal, Clint W.; Whitlaw, Heather A.


    As with many other grassland birds, lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) have experienced population declines in the Southern Great Plains. Currently they are proposed for federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. In addition to a history of land-uses that have resulted in habitat loss, lesser prairie-chickens now face a new potential disturbance from energy development. We estimated lek density in the occupied lesser prairie-chicken range of Texas, USA, and modeled anthropogenic and vegetative landscape features associated with lek density. We used an aerial line-transect survey method to count lesser prairie-chicken leks in spring 2010 and 2011 and surveyed 208 randomly selected 51.84-km(2) blocks. We divided each survey block into 12.96-km(2) quadrats and summarized landscape variables within each quadrat. We then used hierarchical distance-sampling models to examine the relationship between lek density and anthropogenic and vegetative landscape features and predict how lek density may change in response to changes on the landscape, such as an increase in energy development. Our best models indicated lek density was related to percent grassland, region (i.e., the northeast or southwest region of the Texas Panhandle), total percentage of grassland and shrubland, paved road density, and active oil and gas well density. Predicted lek density peaked at 0.39leks/12.96km(2) (SE=0.09) and 2.05leks/12.96km(2) (SE=0.56) in the northeast and southwest region of the Texas Panhandle, respectively, which corresponds to approximately 88% and 44% grassland in the northeast and southwest region. Lek density increased with an increase in total percentage of grassland and shrubland and was greatest in areas with lower densities of paved roads and lower densities of active oil and gas wells. We used the 2 most competitive models to predict lek abundance and estimated 236 leks (CV=0.138, 95% CI=177-306leks) for our sampling area. Our results suggest that

  4. The influence of environment, sex, and innate timing mechanisms on body temperature patterns of free-ranging black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus). (United States)

    Lehmer, Erin M; Bossenbroek, Jonathan M; Van Horne, Beatrice


    Mechanisms that influence body temperature patterns in black-tailed prairie dogs are not well understood. Previous research on both free-ranging and laboratory populations of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) has suggested that reductions in ambient temperature and food and water deprivation are the primary factors that stimulate torpor in this species. In other species, however, torpor has been shown to be influenced by a multitude of factors, including innate circadian and circannual timing mechanisms, energy status, and reproductive behaviors. Our objective was to clarify the influence of weather, sex, and intrinsic timing mechanisms on the body temperature patterns of free-ranging black-tailed prairie dogs. We monitored body temperatures of eight adult (>1 yr) prairie dogs from November 1999 to June 2000. Prairie dogs showed distinct daily and seasonal body temperature patterns, which reflected changes in ambient temperatures that occurred during these periods. These patterns of daily and seasonal heterothermy suggest that body temperature patterns of black-tailed prairie dogs may be driven by an innate timing mechanism. All prairie dogs entered torpor intermittently throughout winter and spring. Torpor bouts appeared to be influenced by precipitation and reductions in ambient temperature. Our results also suggest that reproductive behaviors and circadian timing may influence torpor in this species.

  5. Estimation of the proximity of private domestic wells to underground storage tanks: Oklahoma pilot study. (United States)

    Weaver, James W; Murray, Andrew R; Kremer, Fran V


    For protecting drinking water supplies, the locations of areas with reliance on private domestic wells (hereafter referred to as "wells") and their relationship to contaminant sources need to be determined. A key resource in the U.S. was the 1990 Census where the source of domestic drinking water was a survey question. Two methods are developed to update estimates of the areal density of well use using readily accessible data. The first uses well logs reported to the states and the addition of housing units reported to the Census Bureau at the county, census tract and census block group scales. The second uses housing units reported to the Census and an estimated well use fraction. To limit the scope and because of abundant data, Oklahoma was used for a pilot project. The resulting well density estimates were consistent among spatial scales, and were statistically similar. High rates of well use were identified to the north and east of Oklahoma City, primarily in expanding cities located over a productive aquifer. In contrast, low rates of well use were identified in rural areas without public water systems and in Oklahoma's second largest city, Tulsa, each attributable to lack of suitable ground water. High densities of well use may be expected in rural areas without public water systems, expanding cities and suburbs, and legacy areas of well usage. The completeness of reported well logs was tested by counts from neighborhoods with known reliance on wells which showed reporting rates of 20% to 98%. Well densities in these neighborhoods were higher than the larger-scale estimates indicating that locally high densities typically exist within analysis units. A Monte Carlo procedure was used to determine that 27% of underground storage tanks that had at least one well within a typical distance of concern of 300m (1000ft). Published by Elsevier B.V.

  6. Aftershock Forecasting: Recent Developments and Lessons from the 2016 M5.8 Pawnee, Oklahoma, Earthquake (United States)

    Michael, A. J.; Field, E. H.; Hardebeck, J.; Llenos, A. L.; Milner, K. R.; Page, M. T.; Perry, S. C.; van der Elst, N.; Wein, A. M.


    After the Mw 5.8 Pawnee, Oklahoma, earthquake of September 3, 2016 the USGS issued a series of aftershock forecasts for the next month and year. These forecasts were aimed at the emergency response community, those making decisions about well operations in the affected region, and the general public. The forecasts were generated manually using methods planned for automatically released Operational Aftershock Forecasts. The underlying method is from Reasenberg and Jones (Science, 1989) with improvements recently published in Page et al. (BSSA, 2016), implemented in a JAVA Graphical User Interface and presented in a template that is under development. The methodological improvements include initial models based on the tectonic regime as defined by Garcia et al. (BSSA, 2012) and the inclusion of both uncertainty in the clustering parameters and natural random variability. We did not utilize the time-dependent magnitude of completeness model from Page et al. because it applies only to teleseismic events recorded by NEIC. The parameters for Garcia's Generic Active Continental Region underestimated the modified-Omori decay parameter and underestimated the aftershock rate by a factor of 2. And the sequence following the Mw 5.7 Prague, Oklahoma, earthquake of November 6, 2011 was about 3 to 4 times more productive than the Pawnee sequence. The high productivity for these potentially induced sequences is consistent with an increase in productivity in Oklahoma since 2009 (Llenos and Michael, BSSA, 2013) and makes a general tectonic model inapplicable to sequences in this region. Soon after the mainshock occurred, the forecasts relied on the sequence specific parameters. After one month, the Omori decay parameter p is less than one, implying a very long-lived sequence. However, the decay parameter is known to be biased low at early times due to secondary aftershock triggering, and the p-value determined early in the sequence may be inaccurate for long-term forecasting.

  7. Climate variability and change and water supply on the Canadian Prairies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nicholaichuk, W.


    The status of water resources on the Canadian Prairies, the related results of recent climate change studies, and research needs, are reviewed. With climate change, it is expected that farming practices will be pushed northwards, the precipitation/evapotranspiration balance will shift, and changes will occur in streamflow, flood risk and water quality. While all models show a warming trend on the Prairies, they differ on changes that might be expected. Some indicate increases in precipitation while others indicate decreases. Required research needed to improve understanding of the issues includes: models to improve computations of evapotranspiration and evaporation over large areas; reliable models of glacier behavior and responses to climatic variation and change; improved areal measurements for precipitation, evaporation, soil moisture, groundwater and runoff; improvements in global circulation models that include feedback mechanisms based on physical land/atmosphere processes; validation of hydrological processes at different levels; and assessment of the role of landscape in regional processes under natural conditions and human influence. 6 refs., 1 tab

  8. Implications of climate change for wetland-dependent birds in the Prairie Pothole Region (United States)

    Steen, Valerie; Skagen, Susan K.; Melcher, Cynthia P.


    The habitats and food resources required to support breeding and migrant birds dependent on North American prairie wetlands are threatened by impending climate change. The North American Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) hosts nearly 120 species of wetland-dependent birds representing 21 families. Strategic management requires knowledge of avian habitat requirements and assessment of species most vulnerable to future threats. We applied bioclimatic species distribution models (SDMs) to project range changes of 29 wetland-dependent bird species using ensemble modeling techniques, a large number of General Circulation Models (GCMs), and hydrological climate covariates. For the U.S. PPR, mean projected range change, expressed as a proportion of currently occupied range, was −0.31 (± 0.22 SD; range − 0.75 to 0.16), and all but two species were projected to lose habitat. Species associated with deeper water were expected to experience smaller negative impacts of climate change. The magnitude of climate change impacts was somewhat lower in this study than earlier efforts most likely due to use of different focal species, varying methodologies, different modeling decisions, or alternative GCMs. Quantification of the projected species-specific impacts of climate change using species distribution modeling offers valuable information for vulnerability assessments within the conservation planning process.

  9. Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center—Celebrating 50 years of science (United States)

    Austin, Jane E.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Igl, Lawrence D.; Johnson, Douglas H.; Krapu, Gary L.; Larson, Diane L.; Mech, L. David; Mushet, David M.; Sovada, Marsha A.


    The Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center (NPWRC) celebrated its 50-year anniversary in 2015. This report is written in support of that observance. We document why and how the NPWRC came to be and describe some of its many accomplishments and the influence the Center’s research program has had on natural resource management. The history is organized by major research themes, proceeds somewhat chronologically within each theme, and covers the Center’s first 50 years of research. During that period, Center scientists authored more than 1,700 publications and reports. More than 1,000 seasonal or temporary field personnel, and more than 100 graduate students, contributed to the Center’s success; many went on to have exemplary careers in natural resource management, conservation, and education. The mission of the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center today remains true to the original vision: to provide the knowledge needed to understand, conserve, and manage the Nation’s natural resources for current and future generations, with an emphasis on species and ecosystems of the northern Great Plains. The Center’s first 50 years of applied biological research provides a deep scientific foundation on which to address emerging issues for the natural resources in the northern Great Plains and beyond.

  10. Groundwater connectivity of upland-embedded wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region (United States)

    Neff, Brian; Rosenberry, Donald O.


    Groundwater connections from upland-embedded wetlands to downstream waterbodies remain poorly understood. In principle, water from upland-embedded wetlands situated high in a landscape should flow via groundwater to waterbodies situated lower in the landscape. However, the degree of groundwater connectivity varies across systems due to factors such as geologic setting, hydrologic conditions, and topography. We use numerical models to evaluate the conditions suitable for groundwater connectivity between upland-embedded wetlands and downstream waterbodies in the prairie pothole region of North Dakota (USA). Results show groundwater connectivity between upland-embedded wetlands and other waterbodies is restricted when these wetlands are surrounded by a mounding water table. However, connectivity exists among adjacent upland-embedded wetlands where water–table mounds do not form. In addition, the presence of sand layers greatly facilitates groundwater connectivity of upland-embedded wetlands. Anisotropy can facilitate connectivity via groundwater flow, but only if it becomes unrealistically large. These findings help consolidate previously divergent views on the significance of local and regional groundwater flow in the prairie pothole region.

  11. Water resources of the Prairie Island Indian Reservation, Minnesota, 1994-97 (United States)

    Cowdery, Timothy K.


    This evaluation of the water resources on the Prairie Island Indian Reservation includes data collected from 8 surface-water sites and 22 wells during 1994–97 and historical data. The Mississippi River and the lakes and wetlands connected to it are separated from the Vermillion River and the lakes and wetlands connected to it by the surficial aquifer on Prairie Island and by Lock and Dam Number 3. These surface-water groups form hydrologic boundaries of the surficial aquifer. The aquifer is 130–200 feet thick, extends to bedrock (the Franconia Formation, which is also an aquifer), and is composed primarily of sand and gravel, but also contains thin, isolated lenses of finer-grained material. Flow in the surficial aquifer is normally from the Mississippi River to the Vermillion River (southwest). During spring snowmelt or heavy rains, a ground-water mound forms in the center of the study area and causes radial ground-water flow toward the surrounding surface waters.

  12. Breaking sod or breaking even? Flax on the northern Great Plains and Prairies, 1889-1930. (United States)

    MacFayden, Joshua D


    A new thirst for paint and color in cities made extensive flax production profitable in the northern Great Plains and Prairies and contributed to the cultivation of the most fragile grassland ecosystems. The production of flax seed for linseed oil became an early spin-off of the Prairie wheat economy but, unlike wheat, flax vanished from old land after one or two rotations and reappeared in districts with the most new breaking. Officials explained the migrant crop as preparing native grasslands for cultivation or exhausting soil in old land, but farmers brought flax to their new breaking for other reasons. Producers would only put flax on any land when a range of economic and environmental conditions were in place. It was never sown without promise of adequately high prices or in the absence of affordable seed and other inputs. When price allowed, it usually appeared on new breaking because it could be planted later and transported further without upsetting the balance of other activities and without farmers learning many new techniques. Scientists discovered that diseased soil drove flax off old land, not soil exhaustion. Circumventing the disease was possible but costly, and farmers simply replaced flax with the next most lucrative commodity.

  13. Predator selection of prairie landscape features and its relation to duck nest success (United States)

    Phillips, M.L.; Clark, W.R.; Sovada, M.A.; Horn, D.J.; Koford, Rolf R.; Greenwood, R.J.


    Mammalian predation is a major cause of mortality for breeding waterfowl in the U.S. Northern Great Plains, and yet we know little about the selection of prairie habitats by predators or how this influences nest success in grassland nesting cover. We selected 2 41.4-km2 study areas in both 1996 and 1997 in North Dakota, USA, with contrasting compositions of perennial grassland. A study area contained either 15-20% perennial grassland (Low Grassland Composition [LGC]) or 45-55% perennial grassland (High Grassland Composition [HGC]). We used radiotelemetry to investigate the selection of 9 landscape cover types by red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), while simultaneously recording duck nest success within planted cover. The cover types included the edge and core areas of planted cover, wetland edges within planted cover or surrounded by cropland, pastureland, hayland, cropland, roads, and miscellaneous cover types. Striped skunks selected wetland edges surrounded by agriculture over all other cover types in LGC landscapes (P-values for all pairwise comparisons were foraging efficiency in the interior areas of planted cover and contributed to higher nest success in HGC landscapes. Our observations of predator cover-type selection not only support the restoration and management of large blocks of grassland but also indicate the influence of alternative cover types for mitigating nest predation in the Prairie Pothole Region.

  14. Ecological and Landscape Drivers of Neonicotinoid Insecticide Detections and Concentrations in Canada's Prairie Wetlands. (United States)

    Main, Anson R; Michel, Nicole L; Headley, John V; Peru, Kerry M; Morrissey, Christy A


    Neonicotinoids are commonly used seed treatments on Canada's major prairie crops. Transported via surface and subsurface runoff into wetlands, their ultimate aquatic fate remains largely unknown. Biotic and abiotic wetland characteristics likely affect neonicotinoid presence and environmental persistence, but concentrations vary widely between wetlands that appear ecologically (e.g., plant composition) and physically (e.g., depth) similar for reasons that remain unclear. We conducted intensive surveys of 238 wetlands, and documented 59 wetland (e.g., dominant plant species) and landscape (e.g., surrounding crop) characteristics as part of a novel rapid wetland assessment system. We used boosted regression tree (BRT) analysis to predict both probability of neonicotinoid analytical detection and concentration. BRT models effectively predicted the deviance in neonicotinoid detection (62.4%) and concentration (74.7%) from 21 and 23 variables, respectively. Detection was best explained by shallow marsh plant species identity (34.8%) and surrounding crop (13.9%). Neonicotinoid concentration was best explained by shallow marsh plant species identity (14.9%) and wetland depth (14.2%). Our research revealed that plant composition is a key indicator and/or driver of neonicotinoid presence and concentration in Prairie wetlands. We recommend wetland buffers consisting of diverse native vegetation be retained or restored to minimize neonicotinoid transport and retention in wetlands, thereby limiting their potential effects on wetland-dependent organisms.

  15. Social isolation alters central nervous system monoamine content in prairie voles following acute restraint. (United States)

    McNeal, Neal; Anderson, Eden M; Moenk, Deirdre; Trahanas, Diane; Matuszewich, Leslie; Grippo, Angela J


    Animal models have shown that social isolation and other forms of social stress lead to depressive- and anxiety-relevant behaviors, as well as neuroendocrine and physiological dysfunction. The goal of this study was to investigate the effects of prior social isolation on neurotransmitter content following acute restraint in prairie voles. Animals were either paired with a same-sex sibling or isolated for 4 weeks. Plasma adrenal hormones and ex vivo tissue concentrations of monoamine neurotransmitters and their metabolites were measured following an acute restraint stressor in all animals. Isolated prairie voles displayed significantly increased circulating adrenocorticotropic hormone levels, as well as elevated serotonin and dopamine levels in the hypothalamus, and potentially decreased levels of serotonin in the frontal cortex. However, no group differences in monoamine levels were observed in the hippocampus or raphe. The results suggest that social stress may bias monoamine neurotransmission and stress hormone function to subsequent acute stressors, such as restraint. These findings improve our understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms underlying the consequences of social stress.

  16. Low-cost digital image processing at the University of Oklahoma (United States)

    Harrington, J. A., Jr.


    Computer assisted instruction in remote sensing at the University of Oklahoma involves two separate approaches and is dependent upon initial preprocessing of a LANDSAT computer compatible tape using software developed for an IBM 370/158 computer. In-house generated preprocessing algorithms permits students or researchers to select a subset of a LANDSAT scene for subsequent analysis using either general purpose statistical packages or color graphic image processing software developed for Apple II microcomputers. Procedures for preprocessing the data and image analysis using either of the two approaches for low-cost LANDSAT data processing are described.

  17. Occurrence of organic wastewater and other contaminants in cave streams in northeastern Oklahoma and northwestern Arkansas (United States)

    Bidwell, Joseph R.; Becker, C.; Hensley, S.; Stark, R.; Meyer, M.T.


    The prevalence of organic wastewater compounds in surface waters of the United States has been reported in a number of recent studies. In karstic areas, surface contaminants might be transported to groundwater and, ultimately, cave ecosystems, where they might impact resident biota. In this study, polar organic chemical integrative samplers (POCISs) and semipermeable membrane devices (SPMDs) were deployed in six caves and two surface-water sites located within the Ozark Plateau of northeastern Oklahoma and northwestern Arkansas in order to detect potential chemical contaminants in these systems. All caves sampled were known to contain populations of the threatened Ozark cavefish (Amblyopsis rosae). The surface-water site in Oklahoma was downstream from the outfall of a municipal wastewater treatment plant and a previous study indicated a hydrologic link between this stream and one of the caves. A total of 83 chemicals were detected in the POCIS and SPMD extracts from the surface-water and cave sites. Of these, 55 chemicals were detected in the caves. Regardless of the sampler used, more compounds were detected in the Oklahoma surface-water site than in the Arkansas site or the caves. The organic wastewater chemicals with the greatest mass measured in the sampler extracts included sterols (cholesterol and ??-sitosterol), plasticizers [diethylhexylphthalate and tris (2-butoxyethyl) phosphate], the herbicide bromacil, and the fragrance indole. Sampler extracts from most of the cave sites did not contain many wastewater contaminants, although extracts from samplers in the Oklahoma surfacewater site and the cave hydrologically linked to it had similar levels of diethylhexyphthalate and common detections of carbamazapine, sulfamethoxazole, benzophenone, N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide (DEET), and octophenol monoethoxylate. Further evaluation of this system is warranted due to potential ongoing transport of wastewaterassociated chemicals into the cave. Halogenated organics

  18. A study of the Oklahoma City urban heat island using ground measurements and remote sensing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, M. J. (Michael J.); Ivey, A. (Austin); McPherson, T. N. (Timothy N.); Boswell, D. (David); Pardyjak, E. R. (Eric R.)


    Measurements of temperature and position were collected during the night from an instrumented van on routes through Oklahoma City and the rural outskirts. The measurements were taken as part of the Joint URBAN 2003 Tracer Field Experiment conducted in Oklahoma City from June 29, 2003 to July 30, 2003 (Allwine et al., 2004). The instrumented van was driven over four primary routes that included legs from the downtown core to four different 'rural' areas. Each route went through residential areas and most often went by a line of permanently fixed temperature probes (Allwine et al., 2004) for cross-checking purposes. Each route took from 20 to 40 minutes to complete. Based on seven nights of data, initial analyses indicate that there was a temperature difference of 0.5-6.5 C between the urban core and nearby 'rural' areas. Analyses also suggest that there were significant fine scale temperature differences over distances of tens of meters within the city and in the nearby rural areas. The temperature measurements that were collected are intended to supplement the meteorological measurements taken during the Joint URBAN 2003 Field Experiment, to assess the importance of the urban heat island phenomenon in Oklahoma City, and to test new urban canopy parameterizations that have been developed for regional scale meteorological codes (e.g., Chin et al., 2000; Holt and Shi, 2004). In addition to the ground measurements, skin temperature measurements were also analyzed from remotely sensed images taken from the Earth Observing System's Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER). A surface kinetic temperature thermal infrared image captured by the ASTER of the Oklahoma City area on July 21, 2001 was analyzed within ESRI's ArcGIS 8.3 to correlate variations in temperature with land use type. Analysis of this imagery suggests distinct variations in temperature across different land use categories. Through the use of

  19. Characterizing contaminant concentrations with depth by using the USGS well profiler in Oklahoma, 2003-9 (United States)

    Smith, S. Jerrod; Becker, Carol J.


    Since 2003, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Oklahoma Water Science Center has been using the USGS well profiler to characterize changes in water contribution and contaminant concentrations with depth in pumping public-supply wells in selected aquifers. The tools and methods associated with the well profiler, which were first developed by the USGS California Water Science Center, have been used to investigate common problems such as saline water intrusion in high-yield irrigation wells and metals contamination in high-yield public-supply wells.

  20. Geologic and geophysical models for Osage County, Oklahoma, with implications for groundwater resources (United States)

    Hudson, Mark R.; Smith, David V.; Pantea, Michael P.; Becker, Carol J.


    This report summarizes a three-dimensional (3-D) geologic model that was constructed to provide a framework to investigate groundwater resources of the Osage Nation in northeastern Oklahoma. This report also presents an analysis of an airborne electromagnetic (AEM) survey that assessed the spatial variation of electrical resistivity to depths as great as 300 meters in the subsurface. The report and model provide support for a countywide assessment of groundwater resources, emphasizing the Upper Pennsylvanian rock units in the shallow subsurface of central and eastern Osage County having electrical resistivity properties that may indicate aquifers.

  1. The Oklahoma Attorney General's Task Force report on the State of End-of-Life Health Care, 2005. (United States)

    Edmondson, W A Drew


    This article includes the recommendations submitted by the 15 members of the Oklahoma Attorney General's Task Force in their Report on the State of End-of-Life Health Care. The task force was created on April 21, 2004, and their report was accepted by Attorney General W.A. Drew Edmondson at a press conference April 11, 2005. It has been forwarded to members of the Oklahoma Legislature, relevant state agencies and organizations with an invitation to join with members of the task force to continue efforts to improve end-of-life care for Oklahomans. Copies of the report are available upon request to the Office of Attorney General.

  2. Nest Success and Cause-Specific Nest Failure of Grassland Passerines Breeding in Prairie Grazed by Livestock (United States)

    This manuscript describes two years of field research on ground-nesting songbird species at Zumwalt Prairie Reserve, northeastern Oregon, USA. Cattle-grazing has long been suspected in declines of ground-nesting songbirds in grazed grassland, primarily due to increased trampling...

  3. Droughts may increase susceptibility of prairie dogs to fleas: Incongruity with hypothesized mechanisms of plague cycles in rodents (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Biggins, Dean E.; Long, Dustin H.; Gage, Kenneth L.; Antolin, Michael F.


    Plague is a reemerging, rodent-associated zoonosis caused by the flea-borne bacterium Yersinia pestis. As a vector-borne disease, rates of plague transmission may increase when fleas are abundant. Fleas are highly susceptible to desiccation under hot-dry conditions; we posited that their densities decline during droughts. We evaluated this hypothesis with black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) in New Mexico, June–August 2010–2012. Precipitation was relatively plentiful during 2010 and 2012 but scarce during 2011, the driest spring–summer on record for the northeastern grasslands of New Mexico. Unexpectedly, fleas were 200% more abundant in 2011 than in 2010 and 2012. Prairie dogs were in 27% better condition during 2010 and 2012, and they devoted 287% more time to grooming in 2012 than in 2011. During 2012, prairie dogs provided with supplemental food and water were in 23% better condition and carried 40% fewer fleas. Collectively, these results suggest that during dry years, prairie dogs are limited by food and water, and they exhibit weakened defenses against fleas. Long-term data are needed to evaluate the generality of whether droughts increase flea densities and how changes in flea abundance during sequences of dry and wet years might affect plague cycles in mammalian hosts.

  4. Prescribed fire: A proposed management tool to facilitate black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colony expansion (United States)

    Felicia D. Archuleta; Paulette L. Ford


    Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) are considered a keystone species in grassland ecosystems. Through their burrowing activities, they conspicuously alter grassland landscapes and provide foraging, shelter and nesting habitat for a diverse array of grassland species, in addition to serving as prey for the endangered black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes...

  5. 77 FR 57082 - Prairie Rose Wind, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER12-2542-000] Prairie Rose Wind, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market- Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket... Rose Wind, LLC's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate schedule...

  6. A proxy of social mate choice in prairie warblers is correlated with consistent, rapid, low-pitched singing (United States)

    Bruce E. Byers; Michael E. Akresh; David I. King


    In songbirds, female mate choice may be influenced by how well a male performs his songs. Performing songs well may be especially difficult if it requires maximizingmultiple aspects of performance simultaneously.We therefore hypothesized that, in a population of prairie warblers, the males most attractive to females would be those with superior performance in more than...

  7. 75 FR 44292 - Northern States Power Company; Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant, Units 1 and 2; Notice of... (United States)


    ... and DPR-60] Northern States Power Company; Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant, Units 1 and 2... assessment, and behavioral observation) of the unescorted access authorization program when making the... under consideration to determine whether it met the criteria established in NRC Management Directive (MD...

  8. Assessing the Impact of Climate Variability on Cropland Productivity in the Canadian Prairies Using Time Series MODIS FAPAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taifeng Dong


    Full Text Available Cropland productivity is impacted by climate. Knowledge on spatial-temporal patterns of the impacts at the regional scale is extremely important for improving crop management under limiting climatic factors. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of climate variability on cropland productivity in the Canadian Prairies between 2000 and 2013 based on time series of MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer FAPAR (Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation product. Key phenological metrics, including the start (SOS and end of growing season (EOS, and the cumulative FAPAR (CFAPAR during the growing season (between SOS and EOS, were extracted and calculated from the FAPAR time series with the Parametric Double Hyperbolic Tangent (PDHT method. The Mann-Kendall test was employed to assess the trends of cropland productivity and climatic variables, and partial correlation analysis was conducted to explore the potential links between climate variability and cropland productivity. An assessment using crop yield statistical data showed that CFAPAR can be taken as a surrogate of cropland productivity in the Canadian Prairies. Cropland productivity showed an increasing trend in most areas of Canadian Prairies, in general, during the period from 2000 to 2013. Interannual variability in cropland productivity on the Canadian Prairies was influenced positively by rainfall variation and negatively by mean air temperature.

  9. Investigating temporal patterns of a native bee community in a remnant North American bunchgrass prairie using blue vane traps. (United States)

    Kimoto, Chiho; Debano, Sandra J; Thorp, Robbin W; Rao, Sujaya; Stephen, William P


    Native bees are important ecologically and economically because their role as pollinators fulfills a vital ecosystem service. Pollinators are declining due to various factors, including habitat degradation and destruction. Grasslands, an important habitat for native bees, are particularly vulnerable. One highly imperiled and understudied grassland type in the United States is the Pacific Northwest Bunchgrass Prairie. No studies have examined native bee communities in this prairie type. To fill this gap, the bee fauna of the Zumwalt Prairie, a large, relatively intact remnant of the Pacific Northwest Bunchgrass Prairie, was examined. Native bees were sampled during the summers of 2007 and 2008 in sixteen 40-ha study pastures on a plateau in northeastern Oregon, using a sampling method not previously used in grassland studies-blue vane traps. This grassland habitat contained an abundant and diverse community of native bees that experienced marked seasonal and inter-annual variation, which appears to be related to weather and plant phenology. Temporal variability evident over the entire study area was also reflected at the individual trap level, indicating a consistent response across the spatial scale of the study. These results demonstrate that temporal variability in bee communities can have important implications for long-term monitoring protocols. In addition, the blue vane trap method appears to be well-suited for studies of native bees in large expanses of grasslands or other open habitats, and may be a useful tool for monitoring native bee communities in these systems.

  10. Contributions of seed bank and vegetative propagules to vegetation composition on prairie dog colonies in western South Dakota (United States)

    Emily R. Helms; Lan Xu; Jack L. Butler


    Characterizing the contributions of the seed bank and vegetative propagules will enhance our understanding of community resiliency associated with prairie dog disturbances. Our objective was to determine the effects of ecological condition (EC) and distance from burrows on the soil seed bank and vegetative propagules. Based on species composition of the extant...

  11. Resource selection models are useful in predicting fine-scale distributions of black-footed ferrets in prairie dog colonies (United States)

    Eads, David A.; Jachowski, David S.; Biggins, Dean E.; Livieri, Travis M.; Matchett, Marc R.; Millspaugh, Joshua J.


    Wildlife-habitat relationships are often conceptualized as resource selection functions (RSFs)—models increasingly used to estimate species distributions and prioritize habitat conservation. We evaluated the predictive capabilities of 2 black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes) RSFs developed on a 452-ha colony of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) in the Conata Basin, South Dakota. We used the RSFs to project the relative probability of occurrence of ferrets throughout an adjacent 227-ha colony. We evaluated performance of the RSFs using ferret space use data collected via postbreeding spotlight surveys June–October 2005–2006. In home ranges and core areas, ferrets selected the predicted "very high" and "high" occurrence categories of both RSFs. Count metrics also suggested selection of these categories; for each model in each year, approximately 81% of ferret locations occurred in areas of very high or high predicted occurrence. These results suggest usefulness of the RSFs in estimating the distribution of ferrets throughout a black-tailed prairie dog colony. The RSFs provide a fine-scale habitat assessment for ferrets that can be used to prioritize releases of ferrets and habitat restoration for prairie dogs and ferrets. A method to quickly inventory the distribution of prairie dog burrow openings would greatly facilitate application of the RSFs.

  12. Fine-scale habitat use of reintroduced black-footed ferrets on prairie dog colonies in New Mexico (United States)

    Chipault, Jennifer G.; Biggins, Dean E.; Detling, James K.; Long, Dustin H.; Reich, Robin M.


    Black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes) are among the most endangered animals in North America. Reintroductions of captive-born ferrets onto prairie dog (Cynomys spp.) colonies are crucial to the conservation of the species. In September 2007, captive-born ferrets were released on a black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colony at the Vermejo Park Ranch, New Mexico. Ferret kits experimentally released in areas of comparatively low and high prairie dog burrow densities were located via spotlight surveys. Some maturing ferret kits were subsequently translocated to areas of low and high burrow densities on nearby prairie dog colonies. For 2 months, fine-scale habitat use was quantified by mapping all burrow openings within a 30-m radius of each ferret location. Spatial statistics accounted for autocorrelation in the burrow densities in areas used by ferrets. It was hypothesized that ferrets would select areas of high burrow densities within colonies; however, burrow densities in areas used by ferrets were generally similar to the available burrow densities. Because ferrets used areas with burrow densities similar to densities available at the colony level and because of the potential energetic benefits for ferrets using areas with high burrow densities, releasing ferrets on colonies with high burrow densities might increase reintroduction success.

  13. 78 FR 62300 - Prairie Breeze Wind Energy LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER14-25-000] Prairie Breeze Wind Energy LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket... Breeze Wind Energy LLC's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate schedule...

  14. "A Prairie Childhood" by Edith Abbott: An Excerpt from "The Children's Champion," a Biography of Grace Abbott (United States)

    Sorensen, John


    Grace Abbott's courageous struggles--to protect the rights of immigrants, to increase the role of women in government, and to improve the lives of all children--are filled with adventurous tales of the remarkable human ability to seek out suffering and to do something about it. "A Prairie Childhood" is an excerpt from the Grace Abbott biography…

  15. Continuous Long-Term Modeling of Shallow Groundwater-Surface Water Interaction: Implications for a Wet Prairie Restoration (United States)

    Wijayarathne, D. B.; Gomezdelcampo, E.


    The existence of wet prairies is wholly dependent on the groundwater and surface water interaction. Any process that alters this interaction has a significant impact on the eco-hydrology of wet prairies. The Oak Openings Region (OOR) in Northwest Ohio supports globally rare wet prairie habitats and the precious few remaining have been drained by ditches, altering their natural flow and making them an unusually variable and artificial system. The Gridded Surface Subsurface Hydrologic Analysis (GSSHA) model from the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center was used to assess the long-term impacts of land-use change on wet prairie restoration. This study is the first spatially explicit, continuous, long-term modeling approach for understanding the response of the shallow groundwater system of the OOR to human intervention, both positive and negative. The GSSHA model was calibrated using a 2-year weekly time series of water table elevations collected with an array of piezometers in the field. Basic statistical analysis indicates a good fit between observed and simulated water table elevations on a weekly level, though the model was run on an hourly time step and a pixel size of 10 m. Spatially-explicit results show that removal of a local ditch may not drastically change the amount of ponding in the area during spring storms, but large flooding over the entire area would occur if two other ditches are removed. This model is being used by The Nature Conservancy and Toledo Metroparks to develop different scenarios for prairie restoration that minimize its effect on local homeowners.

  16. The parasitic eyeworm Oxyspirura petrowi as a possible cause of decline in the threatened lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas R Dunham

    Full Text Available Lesser prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus have been declining range wide since the early 1900's despite efforts to establish conservation and improve their habitat. In early 2014, the lesser prairie-chicken was listed as a threatened species under the U.S Endangered Species Act and the need to find out why they are declining is more important than ever. Nine hunter shot lesser prairie-chickens were donated and sampled for the presence or absence of the eyeworm Oxyspirura petrowi, a known parasite that can cause damage to the eye of its host, and common environmental contaminants. Eyeworm infection was found in 7 of 9 birds (78% infection rate with an infection range between 0-16 O. petrowi per bird. Breast, liver, and fat tissue samples from the lesser prairie-chickens were analyzed for the frequency of 20 organochlorine pesticides. Femurs and livers were also tested on these birds for metal contaminants. Pesticides were found in several samples above the detection limits but were still in the low ng/g range. Notable was the ubiquitous presence of endrin aldehyde across all tissues. One femur showed 5.66 µg/g of lead (Pb but this is still relatively low. No liver samples had elevated mercury (Hg above detection limits. The presence of these organochlorines is consistent with the historic use of pesticides in this region. With pesticide and metals found in such low levels and parasitic nematode infections at rather high levels, it is recommended that these parasites be further evaluated as a contributing factor to the decline of the lesser prairie-chicken.

  17. Helicopter electromagnetic and magnetic geophysical survey data, Hunton anticline, south-central Oklahoma (United States)

    Smith, Bruce D.; Smith, David V.; Deszcz-Pan, Maryla; Blome, Charles D.; Hill, Patricia


    This report is a digital data release for multiple geophysical surveys conducted in the Hunton anticline area of south-central Oklahoma. The helicopter electromagnetic and magnetic surveys were flown on March 16–17, 2007, in four areas of the Hunton anticline in south-central Oklahoma. The objective of this project is to improve the understanding of the geohydrologic framework of the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer. The electromagnetic sensor for the helicopter electromagnetic survey consisted of six different transmitter-receiver orientations that measured the earth's electrical response at six distinct frequencies from approximately 500 Hertz to approximately 115,000 Hertz. The electromagnetic measurements were converted to electrical resistivity values, which were gridded and plotted on georeferenced maps. The map from each frequency represents a different depth of investigation for each area. The range of subsurface investigation is comparable to the depth of shallow groundwater. The four areas selected for the helicopter electromagnetic study, blocks A–D, have different geologic and hydrologic settings. Geophysical and hydrologic information from U.S. Geological Survey studies are being used by modelers and resource managers to develop groundwater resource plans for the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer.

  18. Endozoochory of seeds and invertebrates by migratory waterbirds in Oklahoma, USA (United States)

    Green, Andy J.; Frisch, Dagmar; Michot, Thomas C.; Allain, Larry K.; Barrow, Wylie C.


    Given their abundance and migratory behavior, waterbirds have major potential for dispersing plants and invertebrates within North America, yet their role as vectors remains poorly understood. We investigated the numbers and types of invertebrates and seeds within freshly collected faecal samples (n = 22) of migratory dabbling ducks and shorebirds in November 2008 in two parts of Lake Texoma in southern Oklahoma. Killdeer Charadrius vociferus were transporting a higher number and diversity of both plants and invertebrates than the green-winged teal Anas carolinensis. Ten plant taxa and six invertebrate taxa were identified to at least genus level, although viability was not confirmed for most of these taxa. Bryozoan statoblasts (from four species not previously recorded from Oklahoma) were especially abundant in killdeer faeces, while the ostracod Candona simpsoni was detected as a live adult in torpor in the teal faeces. Cyperaceae and Juncaceae were the most abundant plant families represented and Cyperus strigosus seeds germinated after extraction from killdeer faeces. This snapshot study underlines the importance of waterbirds as vectors of passive dispersal of many organisms and the need for more research in this discipline.

  19. The roles of precipitation regimes on juniper forest encroachment on grasslands in Oklahoma (United States)

    Wang, J.; Xiao, X.; Qin, Y.


    Woody plant encroachment into grasslands has been dominantly explained by fire suppression, grazing and CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere. As different root depths of grasses and trees in soils, increased precipitation intensity was expected to facilitate the woody plant abundance, which was demonstrated by the field precipitation test in a sub-tropical savanna ecosystem. However, it is lacking to compressively examine the roles of precipitation regimes on woody plant encroachment at regional scales based on long-term observation data. This study examined the relationships between changes of precipitation regimes (amounts, frequency and intensity) and dynamics of juniper forest coverage using site-based rainfall data and remote sensing-based juniper forest maps in 1994-2010 over Oklahoma State. Our results showed that precipitation amount and intensity played larger roles than frequency on the juniper forest encroachment into the grassland in Oklahoma, and increased precipitation amount and intensity could facilitate the juniper woody encroachment. This practice based on observation data at the regional scale could be used to support precipitation experiments and model simulations and predicting the juniper forest encroachment.

  20. Intermediate Photovoltaic System Application Experiment. Oklahoma Center for Science and Arts. Phase II. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    This report presents the key results of the Phase II efforts for the Intermediate PV System Applications Experiment at the Oklahoma Center for Science and Arts (OCSA). This phase of the project involved fabrication, installation and integration of a nominal 140 kW flat panel PV system made up of large, square polycrystalline-silicon solar cell modules, each nominally 61 cm x 122 cm in size. The output of the PV modules, supplied by Solarex Corporation, was augmented, 1.35 to 1 at peak, by a row of glass reflectors, appropriately tilted northward. The PV system interfaces with the Oklahoma Gas and Electric Utility at the OCSA main switchgear. Any excess power generated by the system is fed into the utility under a one to one buyback arrangement. Except for a shortfall in the system output, presently suspected to be due to the poor performance of the modules, no serious problems were encountered. Certain value engineering changes implemented during construction and early operational failure events associated with the power conditioning system are also described. The system is currently undergoing extended testing and evaluation.

  1. Spatiotemporal distribution of Oklahoma earthquakes: Exploring relationships using a nearest-neighbor approach (United States)

    Vasylkivska, Veronika S.; Huerta, Nicolas J.


    Determining the spatiotemporal characteristics of natural and induced seismic events holds the opportunity to gain new insights into why these events occur. Linking the seismicity characteristics with other geologic, geographic, natural, or anthropogenic factors could help to identify the causes and suggest mitigation strategies that reduce the risk associated with such events. The nearest-neighbor approach utilized in this work represents a practical first step toward identifying statistically correlated clusters of recorded earthquake events. Detailed study of the Oklahoma earthquake catalog's inherent errors, empirical model parameters, and model assumptions is presented. We found that the cluster analysis results are stable with respect to empirical parameters (e.g., fractal dimension) but were sensitive to epicenter location errors and seismicity rates. Most critically, we show that the patterns in the distribution of earthquake clusters in Oklahoma are primarily defined by spatial relationships between events. This observation is a stark contrast to California (also known for induced seismicity) where a comparable cluster distribution is defined by both spatial and temporal interactions between events. These results highlight the difficulty in understanding the mechanisms and behavior of induced seismicity but provide insights for future work.

  2. Persistence of the longnose darter (P. nasuta) in Lee Creek, Oklahoma (United States)

    Gatlin, Michael R.; Long, James M.


    The longnose darter Percina nasuta (Bailey) is one of Oklahoma’s rarest fish species (1) and is listed by the state as endangered. Throughout the rest of its range, which includes Missouri, Arkansas and the far eastern portion of Oklahoma, the longnose darter is classified as “rare” or “threatened” (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 1). This species inhabits both slow- and fast-water habitats with cobble and gravel substrates in medium to large streams (7, 8, 1). Oklahoma populations of longnose darter are known to occur only in the Poteau River and Lee Creek drainages in Le Flore and Sequoyah counties, respectively (9, 10). Cross and Moore (9) collected longnose darters from the Poteau River in 1947. The species was not collected in a subsequent survey of the Poteau River in 1974 (11), possibly because of the effects from the Wister Dam, which was completed in 1949. Darters are especially susceptible to flow alterations from dams (2, 12). This, together with the 1992 completion of Lee Creek Reservoir in Arkansas, has raised concern for the Lee Creek population of longnose darters (13).

  3. Identification of brome grass infestations in southwest Oklahoma using multi-temporal Landsat imagery (United States)

    Yan, D.; de Beurs, K.


    The extensive infestation of brome grasses (Cheatgrass, Rye brome and Japanese brome) in southwest Oklahoma imposes negative impacts on local economy and ecosystem in terms of decreasing crop and forage production and increasing fire risk. Previously proposed methodologies on brome grass detection are found ill-suitable for southwest Oklahoma as a result of similar responses of background vegetation to inter-annual variability of rainfall. In this study, we aim to identify brome grass infestations by detecting senescent brome grasses using the 2011 Cultivated Land Cover Data Sets and the difference Normalized Difference Infrared Index (NDII) derived from multi-temporal Landsat imagery. Landsat imageries acquired on May 18th and June 10th 2013 by Operational Land Imager and Enhanced Thematic Mapper plus were used. The imagery acquisition dates correspond to the peak growth and senescent time of brome grasses, respectively. The difference NDII was calculated by subtracting the NDII image acquired in May from the June NDII image. Our hypotheses is that senescent brome grasses and crop/pasture fields harvested between the two image acquisition dates can be distinguished from background land cover classes because of their increases in NDII due to decreased water absorption by senescent vegetation in the shortwave infrared region. The Cultivated Land Cover Data Sets were used to further separate senescent brome grass patches from newly harvested crop/pasture fields. Ground truth data collected during field trips in June, July and August of 2013 were used to validate the detection results.

  4. Three-dimensional geologic model of the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer, south-central Oklahoma (United States)

    Faith, Jason R.; Blome, Charles D.; Pantea, Michael P.; Puckette, James O.; Halihan, Todd; Osborn, Noel; Christenson, Scott; Pack, Skip


    The Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer of south-central Oklahoma encompasses more than 850 square kilometers and is the principal water resource for south-central Oklahoma. Rock units comprising the aquifer are characterized by limestone, dolomite, and sandstones assigned to two lower Paleozoic units: the Arbuckle and Simpson Groups. Also considered to be part of the aquifer is the underlying Cambrian-age Timbered Hills Group that contains limestone and sandstone. The highly faulted and fractured nature of the Arbuckle-Simpson units and the variable thickness (600 to 2,750 meters) increases the complexity in determining the subsurface geologic framework of this aquifer. A three-dimensional EarthVision (Trademark) geologic framework model was constructed to quantify the geometric relationships of the rock units of the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer in the Hunton anticline area. This 3-D EarthVision (Trademark) geologic framework model incorporates 54 faults and four modeled units: basement, Arbuckle-Timbered Hills Group, Simpson Group, and post-Simpson. Primary data used to define the model's 54 faults and four modeled surfaces were obtained from geophysical logs, cores, and cuttings from 126 water and petroleum wells. The 3-D framework model both depicts the volumetric extent of the aquifer and provides the stratigraphic layer thickness and elevation data used to construct a MODFLOW version 2000 regional groundwater-flow model.

  5. Voluntary Smoke-Free Measures Among Oklahoma Nightlife Owners: Barriers and Facilitators. (United States)

    Benowitz-Fredericks, Carson; McQuoid, Julia; Sheon, Nicolas; Olson, Sarah; Ling, Pamela M


    Smoke-free policies prevent exposure to secondhand smoke and encourage tobacco cessation. Local smoke-free policies that are more comprehensive than statewide policies are not allowed in states with preemption, including Oklahoma, which has the sixth highest smoking prevalence in the United States. In states with preemption, voluntary smoke-free measures are encouraged, but little research exists on venue owners' and managers' views of such measures, particularly in nightlife businesses such as bars and nightclubs. This article draws from semistructured interviews with 23 Oklahoma bar owners and managers, examining perceived risks and benefits of adopting voluntary smoke-free measures in their venues. No respondents expressed awareness of preemption. Many reported that smoke-free bars and nightclubs were an inevitable societal trend, particularly as younger customers increasingly expected smoke-free venues. Business benefits such as decreased operating and cleaning costs, improved atmosphere, and employee efficiency were more convincing than improved employee health. Concerns that voluntary measures created an uneven playing field among venues competing for customers formed a substantial barrier to voluntary measures. Other barriers included concerns about lost revenue and fear of disloyalty to customers, particularly older smokers. Addressing business benefits and a level playing field may increase support for voluntary smoke-free nightlife measures.

  6. Controls on the geochemical evolution of Prairie Pothole Region lakes and wetlands over decadal time scales (United States)

    Goldhaber, Martin B.; Mills, Christopher T.; Mushet, David M.; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Rover, Jennifer


    One hundred sixty-seven Prairie Pothole lakes, ponds and wetlands (largely lakes) previously analyzed chemically during the late 1960’s and early to mid-1970’s were resampled and reanalyzed in 2011–2012. The two sampling periods differed climatically. The earlier sampling took place during normal to slightly dry conditions, whereas the latter occurred during and immediately following exceptionally wet conditions. As reported previously in Mushet et al. (2015), the dominant effect was expansion of the area of these lakes and dilution of their major ions. However, within that context, there were significant differences in the evolutionary pathways of major ions. To establish these pathways, we employed the inverse modeling computer code NetpathXL. This code takes the initial and final lake composition and, using mass balance constrained by the composition of diluting waters, and input and output of phases, calculates plausible geochemical evolution pathways. Despite the fact that in most cases major ions decreased, a subset of the lakes had an increase in SO42−. This distinction is significant because SO42− is the dominant anion in a majority of Prairie Pothole Region wetlands and lakes. For lakes with decreasing SO42−, the proportion of original lake water required for mass balance was subordinate to rainwater and/or overland flow. In contrast, lakes with increasing SO42− between the two sampling episodes tended to be dominated by original lake water. This suite of lakes tended to be smaller and have lower initial SO42−concentrations such that inputs of sulfur from dissolution of the minerals gypsum or pyrite had a significant impact on the final sulfur concentration given the lower dilution factors. Thus, our study provides context for how Prairie Pothole Region water bodies evolve geochemically as climate changes. Because wetland geochemistry in turn controls the ecology of these water bodies, this research contributes to the prediction of the

  7. Results from three years on the prairie - improving management through volunteer-collected data (United States)

    Hadley, N.; Force, A.; Holsinger, K.


    Citizen science is a nascent and diversifying field with the ability to support wide-ranging outcomes from volunteer education and empowerment to data-driven decisions. Adventure Scientists is a nonprofit organization that focuses on the latter. We approach citizen science through a solutions-oriented lens, in which quality data can influence decisions leading to improved policy, land management and business practices. All our work is interdisciplinary, as we collaborate with partners in government, academia, industry and nonprofits to help fill their data collection needs. In addressing our partners' data needs, it is critical that we align any newfound knowledge with tangible outcomes. Therefore, our projects and partnerships incorporate concrete theories of change and involve the collaborations and relationships necessary to support decision-making. In this presentation, we will highlight Landmark, a landscape-scale project spanning 30,000 acres of North American prairie in Montana, to illustrate one example of a partnership that resulted in improved management from our volunteer-collected data. This was a multi-year citizen science project, where we assisted the American Prairie Reserve's effort to create the largest grasslands and wildlife protected area in the continental U.S. Our partners identified a need to better understand the extent and diversity of wildlife inhabiting and migrating through the space. To provide this enhanced understanding, we helped design and implement a program to collect key wildlife data on the prairie. We recruited, trained and managed specialized volunteers from the outdoor adventure community. Volunteers were responsible for collecting data year-round on animals moving through the landscape to support their management and protection. After three years of data collection and over 19,000 wildlife observations made while monitoring 29 species, the grasslands preserve is now moving forward with an expansive wildlife dataset to

  8. Effects of exogenous hormones on spermatogenesis in the male prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus). (United States)

    Foreman, D


    Male prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) breed anually and have complete testicular regression. Changes in the seminiferous tubules during the annual cycle have been described recently (Foreman, 1997). This is the first description of spermatogenesis in such a species. The definition of tubular stages during the cycle allows for evaluation of the effects of exogenous hormones, hemicastration, and hemicryptorchidism on spermatogenesis during the annual cycle. Hemicastration was performed during stages of the annual cycle to determine effects of exogenous hormones on remaining testes. Hemicryptorchidism was also done during stages of the annual cycle. FSH, LH, and testosterone were given in high and low doses for short- or long-term treatment periods during stages of the annual cycle. Testicular weights and counts of cell types in tubules of control and treated testes were made on testis tissues. Hemicastration during the out-of-season period does not cause compensatory hypertrophy of the remaining testis, but during recrudescence, hypertrophy of the remaining testis occurs. Hemicastration does not prevent loss of weight by the remaining testis during regression. The seminiferous epithelium of hemicryptorchid prairie dog testes shows damage during spermatogenic activity but not during testicular inactivity. Similarly, hemicryptorchid 15-day-old rat testes do not show damage from hemicryptorchidism. Long-term treatment with FSH preparations during testicular inactivity increased testis weights, spermatogonial proliferation, and spermatocyte differentiation in conjunction with Sertoli cell differentiation. Short-term treatments with low doses increased spermatogonial proliferation and abnormal meiotic activity. Both long- and short-term treatments with LH caused increased sloughing of germ cells and stimulated Leydig and Sertoli cells. Testosterone propionate injections stimulated Sertoli secretions but not Leydig cell activity. Hemicastration during inactivity does

  9. Geophysical Investigation of an Abandoned Cemetery: Teachers Discover Evidence of Unmarked Graves in Prairie View, TX (United States)

    Henning, A. T.; Sawyer, D. S.; Baldwin, R.; Kahera, A.; Thoms, A.


    In July 2007, a group of nineteen K-12 teachers investigated an abandoned cemetery in Prairie View, Texas, utilizing ground-penetrating radar (GPR) to image the subsurface. In a period of two weeks, the group acquired and interpreted 59 GPR profiles in Wyatt Chapel Cemetery and surrounding areas in order to determine the local stratigraphy and try to locate unmarked graves. The sandy soil in this area is ideally suited for GPR investigations and numerous geophysical anomalies were identified. Wyatt Chapel Cemetery is located adjacent to the campus of Prairie View A&M University in Prairie View, TX, and is thought to have originated as a slave burial ground in the 1850's. Participants in a summer course at Rice University conducted a geophysical investigation of the site. Participants were in-service K-12 teachers from urban Houston school districts where the majority of students are members of historically underrepresented minority groups. Recruitment efforts targeted educators who are currently teaching science without a science degree. Participants included elementary, middle and high school teachers. This summer experience is followed by a content-intensive academic year course in Physical Geology. GPR is an excellent tool for investigating the sandy soil encountered at Wyatt Chapel Cemetery. The stratigraphy in the area consists of 3-6 feet of reddish-brown, medium-grained sand overlying a light gray, highly compacted clay. The sand-clay boundary appears as a strong reflector on the GPR profiles. Participants identified numerous anomalies in the GPR data and two were excavated. One consisted of a pair of bright hyperbolae, suggesting two edges of a metal object. This excavation resulted in the discovery of a metal plank thought to be a burial cover. The second anomaly consisted of a break in the horizon representing the top of the clay layer, and subsequent excavation revealed a grave shaft. Participants experienced the process of science first-hand and used

  10. Gaseous Oxidized Mercury Dry Deposition Measurements in the FourCorners Area and Eastern Oklahoma, U.S.A. (United States)

    Gaseous oxidized mercury (GOM) dry deposition measurements using surrogate surface passive samplers were collected in the Four Corners area and eastern Oklahoma from August, 2009–August, 2011. Using data from a six site area network, a characterization of the magnitude and spatia...

  11. The Perceptions of Administrators in the Implementation of Professional Learning Communities: A Case Study in an Oklahoma School District (United States)

    Jaques, Shelley


    In January of 2002, President George Bush implemented the No Child left behind act that required all students to be proficient on state standards by the year 2014. One way a school district in Oklahoma met these new requirements was through the implementation of the principles of a Professional Learning Community. This case study was designed…

  12. Assessment of undiscovered resources in calcrete uranium deposits, Southern High Plains region of Texas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma, 2017 (United States)

    Hall, Susan M.; Mihalasky, Mark J.; Van Gosen, Bradley S.


    The U.S. Geological Survey estimates a mean of 40 million pounds of in-place uranium oxide (U3O8) remaining as potential undiscovered resources in the Southern High Plains region of Texas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. This estimate used a geology-based assessment method specific to calcrete uranium deposits.

  13. Small-mammal responses to pine regeneration treatments in the Ouachita Mountains of Arkansas and Oklahoma, USA (United States)

    Roger W. Perry; Ronald E. Thill


    We compared the initial effects of four forest regeneration treatments (single-tree selection, group selection, shelterwood, and clearcut), and unharvested controls (mature, second-growth forest) on relative abundance of small mammals and small-mammal habitat throughout the Ouachita Mountains of western Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. We compared small-mammal capture...

  14. Detecting Micro-seismicity and Long-duration Tremor-like Events from the Oklahoma Wavefield Experiment (United States)

    Li, C.; Li, Z.; Peng, Z.; Zhang, C.; Nakata, N.


    Oklahoma has experienced abrupt increase of induced seismicity in the last decade. An important way to fully understand seismic activities in Oklahoma is to obtain more complete earthquake catalogs and detect different types of seismic events. The IRIS Community Wavefield Demonstration Experiment was deployed near Enid, Oklahoma in Summer of 2016. The dataset from this ultra-dense array provides an excellent opportunity for detecting microseismicity in that region with wavefield approaches. Here we examine continuous waveforms recorded by 3 seismic lines using local coherence for ultra-dense arrays (Li et al., 2017), which is a measure of cross-correlation of waveform at each station with its nearby stations. So far we have detected more than 5,000 events from 06/22/2016 to 07/20/2016, and majority of them are not listed on the regional catalog of Oklahoma or global catalogs, indicating that they are local events. We also identify 15-20 long-period long-duration events, some of them lasting for more than 500 s. Such events have been found at major plate-boundary faults (also known as deep tectonic tremor), as well as during hydraulic fracturing, slow-moving landslides and glaciers. Our next step is to locate these possible tremor-like events with their relative arrival times across the array and compare their occurrence times with solid-earth tides and injection histories to better understand their driving mechanisms.

  15. Hydrologic drought of water year 2011 compared to four major drought periods of the 20th century in Oklahoma (United States)

    Shivers, Molly J.; Andrews, William J.


    Water year 2011 (October 1, 2010, through September 30, 2011) was a year of hydrologic drought (based on streamflow) in Oklahoma and the second-driest year to date (based on precipitation) since 1925. Drought conditions worsened substantially in the summer, with the highest monthly average temperature record for all States being broken by Oklahoma in July (89.1 degrees Fahrenheit), June being the second hottest and August being the hottest on record for those months for the State since 1895. Drought conditions continued into the fall, with all of the State continuing to be in severe to exceptional drought through the end of September. In addition to effects on streamflow and reservoirs, the 2011 drought increased damage from wildfires, led to declarations of states of emergency, water-use restrictions, and outdoor burning bans; caused at least $2 billion of losses in the agricultural sector and higher prices for food and other agricultural products; caused losses of tourism and wildlife; reduced hydropower generation; and lowered groundwater levels in State aquifers. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, conducted an investigation to compare the severity of the 2011 drought with four previous major hydrologic drought periods during the 20th century – water years 1929–41, 1952–56, 1961–72, and 1976–81. The period of water years 1925–2011 was selected as the period of record because few continuous record streamflow-gaging stations existed before 1925, and gaps in time existed where no streamflow-gaging stations were operated before 1925. In water year 2011, statewide annual precipitation was the 2d lowest, statewide annual streamflow was 16th lowest, and statewide annual runoff was 42d lowest of those 87 years of record. Annual area-averaged precipitation totals by the nine National Weather Service climate divisions from water year 2011 were compared to those during four previous major hydrologic drought

  16. Use of macroinvertebrates to identify cultivated wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region (United States)

    Euliss, Ned H.; Mushet, David M.; Johnson, Douglas H.


    We evaluated the use of macroinvertebrates as a potential tool to identify dry and intensively farmed temporary and seasonal wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region. The techniques we designed and evaluated used the dried remains of invertebrates or their egg banks in soils as indicators of wetlands. For both the dried remains of invertebrates and their egg banks, we weighted each taxon according to its affinity for wetlands or uplands. Our study clearly demonstrated that shells, exoskeletons, head capsules, eggs, and other remains of macroinvertebrates can be used to identify wetlands, even when they are dry, intensively farmed, and difficult to identify as wetlands using standard criteria (i.e., hydrology, hydrophytic vegetation, and hydric soils). Although both dried remains and egg banks identified wetlands, the combination was more useful, especially for identifying drained or filled wetlands. We also evaluated the use of coarse taxonomic groupings to stimulate use of the technique by nonspecialists and obtained satisfactory results in most situations.

  17. Creation of artificial spawning grounds downstream of the Riviere-des-Prairies Spillway

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verdon, R.


    The creation of artificial spawning grounds is often considered a valuable means of mitigating impact on fish populations. In 1985, following reconstruction of the Riviere-des-Prairies spillway, granular material from the access road was used to create a new spawning area for resident fish. This 0.5 hectare spawning bed was used over the following years by walleye, sauger, longnose and white suckers, and lake sturgeon for reproduction. It was also used as a fry habitat by sturgeon and sucker. Since the reproductive success of the fish depends largely on stable flow conditions, the quality of the habitat is strongly related to the spillway flow regime. Operating procedures compatible with power generation can optimize the spawning success of desirable fish species. Details are presented of site design, construction, fish monitoring, and spillway operation. 4 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab

  18. Feeding ecology of arctic-nesting sandpipers during spring migration through the prairie pothole region (United States)

    Eldridge, J.L.; Krapu, G.L.; Johnson, D.H.


    We evaluated food habits of 4 species of spring-migrant calidrid sandpipers in the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of North Dakota. Sandpipers foraged in several wetland classes and fed primarily on aquatic dipterans, mostly larvae, and the midge family Chironomidae was the primary food eaten. Larger sandpiper species foraged in deeper water and took larger larvae than did smaller sandpipers. The diverse wetland habitats that migrant shorebirds use in the PPR suggest a landscape-level approach be applied to wetland conservation efforts. We recommend that managers use livestock grazing and other tools, where applicable, to keep shallow, freshwater wetlands from becoming choked with emergent vegetation limiting chironomid production and preventing shorebird use.

  19. Which fireballs are meteorites - A study of the Prairie Network photographic meteor data (United States)

    Wetherill, G. W.; Revelle, D. O.


    With the exception of three recovered meteorites with photographic fireball data (Pribram, Lost City, Innisfree), there is generally little information regarding the location of meteorites in the solar system prior to their impact on the earth. An investigation is conducted with the objective to identify those fireballs (bright meteor) data from the Prairie Network. The investigation is based on the belief that many small ordinary chondrites must be present among the photographed bright fireballs. Observations of the recovered fireballs are used to identify characteristics of their dynamics while passing through the atmosphere. In this way criteria are established for identifying those fireballs with similar dynamical characteristics. On the basis of the studies, a catalog is provided of fireballs which have a high probability of being ordinary chondrites or other strong meteorites.

  20. Cold war legacy: sub-surface investigation of unsaturated prairie soil radiologically contaminated in 1951

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sims, D.J.; Andrews, W.S.; Wang, Z.; Creber, K.A.M.


    An unintentional release of fission products (FPs) from a buried storage tank in 1951 resulted in 6.7 L of liquid, bearing radioactive material, being spilled into unsaturated prairie soil at a depth of 3.7 m. Since then, the site has been undisturbed. In October 2001, boreholes were drilled and soil samples were recovered for analysis. Gamma well logging showed higher than background radiation readings at a depth of 3.5 m (corresponding to the storage container location) and a peak reading at 4.7 m (attributed to the breakthrough curve). The soil was determined to be predominantly lean clay with a silty sand layer between 4.4 and 5.1 m. Future work includes radiochemical analysis, soil column simulation, determination of distribution coefficients and transport modelling. (author)

  1. Effects of Wind Energy Development on Nesting Ecology of Greater Prairie-Chickens in Fragmented Grasslands (United States)

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K


    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before–after control–impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = −1.2–1.3) or nest survival (β = −0.3, 95% CI = −0.6–0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. Efectos del Desarrollo de la Energía Eólica sobre la Ecología de Anidación de Gallinas de la Gran Pradera en Pastizales Fragmentados Resumen Se calcula que la energía eólica aportará el 20% de las necesidades energéticas de los Estados Unidos para el 2030, pero nuevos sitios para el desarrollo de energía renovable pueden traslaparse con hábitats importantes de poblaciones declinantes de aves de pastizal. La gallina de la Gran Pradera (Tympanuchus cupido) es una especie de ave obligada de pastizal que se pronostica responderá negativamente al desarrollo energético. Usamos un diseño ADCI modificado para probar los impactos del desarrollo de la energía e

  2. A projection of lesser prairie chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) populations range-wide (United States)

    Cummings, Jonathan W.; Converse, Sarah J.; Moore, Clinton T.; Smith, David R.; Nichols, Clay T.; Allan, Nathan L.; O'Meilia, Chris M.


    We built a population viability analysis (PVA) model to predict future population status of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus, LEPC) in four ecoregions across the species’ range. The model results will be used in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's (FWS) Species Status Assessment (SSA) for the LEPC. Our stochastic projection model combined demographic rate estimates from previously published literature with demographic rate estimates that integrate the influence of climate conditions. This LEPC PVA projects declining populations with estimated population growth rates well below 1 in each ecoregion regardless of habitat or climate change. These results are consistent with estimates of LEPC population growth rates derived from other demographic process models. Although the absolute magnitude of the decline is unlikely to be as low as modeling tools indicate, several different lines of evidence suggest LEPC populations are declining.

  3. Conserving Prairie Pothole Region wetlands and surrounding grasslands: evaluating effects on amphibians (United States)

    Mushet, David M.; Neau, Jordan L.


    The maintenance of viable and genetically diverse populations of amphibians in the Prairie Pothole Region of the United States depends on upland as well as wetland over-wintering and landscape level habitat features.Prairie pothole wetlands provide important amphibian breeding habitat while grasslands surrounding these wetlands provide foraging habitat for adults, overwintering habitat for some species, and important connectivity among breeding wetlands.Grasslands surrounding wetlands were found to be especially important for wood frogs and northern leopard frogs, while croplands dominated habitat utilized by Great Plains toads and Woodhouse’s toads.Habitat suitability mapping highlighted (1) the influence of deep-water overwintering wetlands on suitable habitat for four of five anuran species encountered; (2) the lack of overlap between areas of core habitat for both the northern leopard frog and wood frog compared to the core habitat for both toad species; and (3) the importance of conservation programs in providing grassland components of northern leopard frog and wood frog habitat.Currently, there are approximately 7.2 million acres (2.9 million hectares, ha) of habitat in the PPR identified as suitable for amphibians. WRP and CRP wetland and grassland habitats accounted for approximately 1.9 million acres (0.75 million ha) or 26 percent of this total area.Continued loss of amphibian habitat resulting from an ongoing trend of returning PPR conservation lands to crop production, will likely have significant negative effects on the region’s ability to maintain amphibian biodiversity. Conversely, increases in conservation wetlands and surrounding grasslands on the PPR landscape have great potential to positively influence the region’s amphibian populations.

  4. Linking phenology and biomass productivity in South Dakota mixed-grass prairie (United States)

    Rigge, Matthew; Smart, Alexander; Wylie, Bruce; Gilmanov, Tagir; Johnson, Patricia


    Assessing the health of rangeland ecosystems based solely on annual biomass production does not fully describe plant community condition; the phenology of production can provide inferences on species composition, successional stage, and grazing impacts. We evaluate the productivity and phenology of western South Dakota mixed-grass prairie using 2000 to 2008 Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) satellite imagery at 250 m spatial resolution. Growing season NDVI images were integrated weekly to produce time-integrated NDVI (TIN), a proxy of total annual biomass production, and integrated seasonally to represent annual production by cool (C3) and warm (C4) season species. Additionally, a variety of phenological indicators including cool season percentage of TIN were derived from the seasonal profiles of NDVI. Cool season percentage and TIN were combined to generate vegetation classes, which served as proxies of plant community condition. TIN decreased with precipitation from east to west across the study area. Alternatively, cool season percentage increased from east to west, following patterns related to the reliability (interannual coefficient of variation [CV]) and quantity of mid-summer precipitation. Cool season TIN averaged 76.8% of total. Seasonal accumulation of TIN corresponded closely (R2 > 0.90) to that of gross photosynthesis data from a carbon flux tower. Field-collected biomass and community composition data were strongly related to the TIN and cool season percentage products. The patterns of vegetation classes were responsive to topographic, edaphic, and land management influences on plant communities. Accurate maps of biomass production, cool/warm season composition, and vegetation classes can improve the efficiency of land management by adjusting stocking rates and season of use to maximize rangeland productivity and achieve conservation objectives. Further, our results clarify the spatial and

  5. Ducks and passerines nesting in northern mixed-grass prairie treated with fire (United States)

    Grant, Todd A.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Madden, Elizabeth M.; Berkey, Gordon B.


    Prescribed fire is an important, ecology-driven tool for restoration of grassland systems. However, prescribed fire remains controversial for some grassland managers because of reported reductions in bird use of recently burned grasslands. Few studies have evaluated effects of fire on grassland bird populations in the northern mixed-grass prairie region. Fewer studies yet have examined the influence of fire on nest density or survival. In our review, we found no studies that simultaneously examined effects of fire on duck and passerine nesting. During 1998—2003, we examined effects of prescribed fire on the density of upland-nesting ducks and passerines nesting in north-central North Dakota, USA. Apparent nest densities of gadwall (Anas strepera), mallard (A. platyrhynchos), and all duck species combined, were influenced by fire history of study units, although the degree of influence was not compelling. Fire history was not related to nest densities of blue-winged teal (A. discors), northern shoveler (A. clypeata), or northern pintail (A. acuta); however, apparent nest densities in relation to the number of postfire growing seasons exhibited a strikingly similar pattern among all duck species. When compared to ducks, fire history strongly influenced apparent nest densities of clay-colored sparrow (Spizella pallida), Savannah sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis), and bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus). For most species examined, apparent nest densities were lowest in recently burned units, increased during the second postfire growing season, and stabilized or, in some cases, decreased thereafter. Prescribed fire is critical for restoring the ecology of northern mixed-grass prairies and our findings indicate that reductions in nest densities are limited mostly to the first growing season after fire. Our results support the premise that upland-nesting ducks and several grassland passerine species are adapted to periodic fires occurring at a frequency similar to that

  6. Prerequisites for understanding climate-change impacts on northern prairie wetlands (United States)

    Anteau, Michael J.; Wiltermuth, Mark T.; Post van der Burg, Max; Pearse, Aaron T.


    The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) contains ecosystems that are typified by an extensive matrix of grasslands and depressional wetlands, which provide numerous ecosystem services. Over the past 150 years the PPR has experienced numerous landscape modifications resulting in agricultural conversion of 75–99 % of native prairie uplands and drainage of 50–90 % of wetlands. There is concern over how and where conservation dollars should be spent within the PPR to protect and restore wetland basins to support waterbird populations that will be robust to a changing climate. However, while hydrological impacts of landscape modifications appear substantial, they are still poorly understood. Previous modeling efforts addressing impacts of climate change on PPR wetlands have yet to fully incorporate interacting or potentially overshadowing impacts of landscape modification. We outlined several information needs for building more informative models to predict climate change effects on PPR wetlands. We reviewed how landscape modification influences wetland hydrology and present a conceptual model to describe how modified wetlands might respond to climate variability. We note that current climate projections do not incorporate cyclical variability in climate between wet and dry periods even though such dynamics have shaped the hydrology and ecology of PPR wetlands. We conclude that there are at least three prerequisite steps to making meaningful predictions about effects of climate change on PPR wetlands. Those evident to us are: 1) an understanding of how physical and watershed characteristics of wetland basins of similar hydroperiods vary across temperature and moisture gradients; 2) a mechanistic understanding of how wetlands respond to climate across a gradient of anthropogenic modifications; and 3) improved climate projections for the PPR that can meaningfully represent potential changes in climate variability including intensity and duration of wet and dry periods. Once

  7. Quantifying the Impact of geographically isolated wetlands on the downstream hydrology of a Canadian Prairie watershed (United States)

    Muhammad, A.; Evenson, G. R.; Boluwade, A.; Jha, S. K.; Rasmussen, P. F.


    Hydrological processes are highly complex and strongly nonlinear and cannot be represented through simple means. Models are built to replicate these processes. However, models due to various sources of uncertainty including their structural capability often lead to inaccurate results. The aim of this study is to setup the soil water assessment tool (SWAT) for a watershed that is dominated by potholes in the Prairie region of Canada. The potholes not connected to the stream, also known as geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), are dynamic in nature leading to a fill and spill situation due to varying surface runoff conditions. Significant land use changes have resulted in almost 70% of wetlands being lost and have posed threat of flooding to downstream areas. While some studies were devoted to identify the presence of potholes only few have explored the impacts of wetlands on the downstream hydrology. In this study, we follow Evenson et al., (2016) approach of modifying SWAT model. The modification enhances structural capability of SWAT while depicting the dynamics of wetlands at HRUs level. Redefining the formation of HRUs in such way effectively captures the spatial presence of potholes. We then routed the potholes' fill and spill hydrology to direct the flow to the potholes immediately downstream. The model was calibrated for 2005-2008 and verified over 2009-2011 at a daily time step. We tested our model with three land use change scenarios by varying the presence of potholes and evaluated its impact on the downstream hydrograph. We foresee a significant improvement in replicating stream flow using this novel approach. We believe that it will effectively improve the predictive power of SWAT for this highly complex sub basin (Upper Assiniboine catchment at Kamsack) located in Canadian Prairie.

  8. Gallbladder filling and emptying during cholesterol gallstone formation in the prairie dog. A cholescintigraphic study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pellegrini, C.A.; Ryan, T.; Broderick, W.; Way, L.W.


    We studied gallbladder bile flow before, during, and after cholesterol gallstone formation in the prairie dog using infusion cholescintigraphy with /sup 99m/Tc-diethyl iminodiacetic acid. In 18 fasting animals partitioning of bile between gallbladder and intestine was determined every 15 min for 140 min, and gallbladder response to cholecystokinin (5 U/kg X h) was calculated from the gallbladder ejection fraction. Ten prairie dogs were then placed on a 0.4% cholesterol diet and 8 on a regular diet, and the studies were repeated 1, 2, and 6 wk later. The proportion of hepatic bile that entered the gallbladder relative to the intestine varied from one 15-min period to the next, and averaged 28.2% +/- 5.1% at 140 min. Partial spontaneous gallbladder emptying (ejection fraction 11.5% +/- 5.6%) was intermittently observed. Neither the number nor the ejection fraction of spontaneous gallbladder contractions changed during gallstone formation. By contrast, the percent of gallbladder emptying in response to cholecystokinin decreased from 72.1% +/- 5% to 25.9% +/- 9.3% (p less than 0.025) in the first week and was 14.3% +/- 5.5% at 6 wk (p less than 0.01 from prediet values, not significant from first week). Gallbladder filling decreased from 28.2% +/- 5.1% to 6.7% +/- 3% (p less than 0.01), but this change was only observed after 6 wk, when gallstones had formed. This study shows that bile flow into the gallbladder during fasting is not constant; the gallbladder contracts intermittently; gallbladder emptying in response to exogenous cholecystokinin is altered very early during gallstone formation; and gallbladder filling remains unaffected until later stages, when gallstones have formed

  9. Vulnerability of breeding waterbirds to climate change in the Prairie Pothole Region, U.S.A.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valerie Steen

    Full Text Available The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR of the north-central U.S. and south-central Canada contains millions of small prairie wetlands that provide critical habitat to many migrating and breeding waterbirds. Due to their small size and the relatively dry climate of the region, these wetlands are considered at high risk for negative climate change effects as temperatures increase. To estimate the potential impacts of climate change on breeding waterbirds, we predicted current and future distributions of species common in the PPR using species distribution models (SDMs. We created regional-scale SDMs for the U.S. PPR using Breeding Bird Survey occurrence records for 1971-2011 and wetland, upland, and climate variables. For each species, we predicted current distribution based on climate records for 1981-2000 and projected future distributions to climate scenarios for 2040-2049. Species were projected to, on average, lose almost half their current habitat (-46%. However, individual species projections varied widely, from +8% (Upland Sandpiper to -100% (Wilson's Snipe. Variable importance ranks indicated that land cover (wetland and upland variables were generally more important than climate variables in predicting species distributions. However, climate variables were relatively more important during a drought period. Projected distributions of species responses to climate change contracted within current areas of distribution rather than shifting. Given the large variation in species-level impacts, we suggest that climate change mitigation efforts focus on species projected to be the most vulnerable by enacting targeted wetland management, easement acquisition, and restoration efforts.

  10. Identification of subpopulations of prairie voles differentially susceptible to peer influence to decrease high alcohol intake. (United States)

    Anacker, Allison M J; Ryabinin, Andrey E


    Peer influences are critical in the decrease of alcohol (ethanol) abuse and maintenance of abstinence. We previously developed an animal model of inhibitory peer influences on ethanol drinking using prairie voles and here sought to understand whether this influential behavior was due to specific changes in drinking patterns and to variation in a microsatellite sequence in the regulatory region of the vasopressin receptor 1a gene (avpr1a). Adult prairie voles' drinking patterns were monitored in a lickometer apparatus that recorded each lick a subject exhibited during continuous access to water and 10% ethanol during periods of isolation, pair housing of high and low drinkers, and subsequent isolation. Analysis of fluid consumption confirmed previous results that high drinkers typically decrease ethanol intake when paired with low drinkers, but that a subset of voles do not decrease. Analysis of bout structure revealed differences in the number of ethanol drinking bouts in the subpopulations of high drinkers when paired with low drinkers. Lickometer drinking patterns analyzed by visual and by cross-correlation analyses demonstrated that pair housing did not increase the rate of subjects drinking in bouts occurring at the same time. The length of the avpr1a microsatellite did not predict susceptibility to peer influence or any other drinking behaviors. In summary, subpopulations of high drinkers were identified, by fluid intake and number of drinking bouts, which did or did not lower their ethanol intake when paired with a low drinking peer, and these subpopulations should be explored for testing the efficacy of treatments to decrease ethanol use in groups that are likely to be responsive to different types of therapy.

  11. Reduction of neonicotinoid insecticide residues in Prairie wetlands by common wetland plants. (United States)

    Main, Anson R; Fehr, Jessica; Liber, Karsten; Headley, John V; Peru, Kerry M; Morrissey, Christy A


    Neonicotinoid insecticides are frequently detected in wetlands during the early to mid-growing period of the Canadian Prairie cropping season. These detections also overlap with the growth of macrophytes that commonly surround agricultural wetlands which we hypothesized may reduce neonicotinoid transport and retention in wetlands. We sampled 20 agricultural wetlands and 11 macrophyte species in central Saskatchewan, Canada, over eight weeks to investigate whether macrophytes were capable of reducing movement of neonicotinoids from cultivated fields and/or reducing concentrations in surface water by accumulating insecticide residues into their tissues. Study wetlands were surrounded by clothianidin-treated canola and selected based on the presence (n=10) or absence (n=10) of a zonal plant community. Neonicotinoids were positively detected in 43% of wetland plants, and quantified in 8% of all plant tissues sampled. Three plant species showed high rates of detection: 78% Equisetum arvense (clothianidin, range: wetlands had higher detection frequency and water concentrations of clothianidin (β±S.E.: -0.77±0.26, P=0.003) and thiamethoxam (β±S.E.: -0.69±0.35, P=0.049) than vegetated wetlands. We assessed the importance of wetland characteristics (e.g. vegetative zone width, emergent plant height, water depth) on neonicotinoid concentrations in Prairie wetlands over time using linear mixed-effects models. Clothianidin concentrations were significantly lower in wetlands surrounded by taller plants (β±S.E.: -0.57±0.12, P≤0.001). The results of this study suggest that macrophytes can play an important role in mitigating water contamination by accumulating neonicotinoids and possibly slowing transport to wetlands during the growing season. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Modelling surface-water depression storage in a Prairie Pothole Region (United States)

    Hay, Lauren E.; Norton, Parker A.; Viger, Roland; Markstrom, Steven; Regan, R. Steven; Vanderhoof, Melanie


    In this study, the Precipitation-Runoff Modelling System (PRMS) was used to simulate changes in surface-water depression storage in the 1,126-km2 Upper Pipestem Creek basin located within the Prairie Pothole Region of North Dakota, USA. The Prairie Pothole Region is characterized by millions of small water bodies (or surface-water depressions) that provide numerous ecosystem services and are considered an important contribution to the hydrologic cycle. The Upper Pipestem PRMS model was extracted from the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) National Hydrologic Model (NHM), developed to support consistent hydrologic modelling across the conterminous United States. The Geospatial Fabric database, created for the USGS NHM, contains hydrologic model parameter values derived from datasets that characterize the physical features of the entire conterminous United States for 109,951 hydrologic response units. Each hydrologic response unit in the Geospatial Fabric was parameterized using aggregated surface-water depression area derived from the National Hydrography Dataset Plus, an integrated suite of application-ready geospatial datasets. This paper presents a calibration strategy for the Upper Pipestem PRMS model that uses normalized lake elevation measurements to calibrate the parameters influencing simulated fractional surface-water depression storage. Results indicate that inclusion of measurements that give an indication of the change in surface-water depression storage in the calibration procedure resulted in accurate changes in surface-water depression storage in the water balance. Regionalized parameterization of the USGS NHM will require a proxy for change in surface-storage to accurately parameterize surface-water depression storage within the USGS NHM.

  13. Identification of subpopulations of prairie voles differentially susceptible to peer influence to decrease high alcohol intake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison M.J. Anacker


    Full Text Available Peer influences are critical in the decrease of alcohol (ethanol abuse and maintenance of abstinence. We previously developed an animal model of inhibitory peer influences on ethanol drinking using prairie voles and here sought to understand whether this influential behavior was due to specific changes in drinking patterns and to variation in a microsatellite sequence in the regulatory region of the vasopressin receptor 1a gene (avpr1a. Adult prairie voles’ drinking patterns were monitored in a lickometer apparatus that recorded each lick a subject exhibited during continuous access to water and 10% ethanol during periods of isolation, pair housing of high and low drinkers, and subsequent isolation. Analysis of fluid consumption confirmed previous results that high drinkers typically decrease ethanol intake when paired with low drinkers, but that a subset of voles do not decrease. Analysis of bout structure revealed differences in the number of ethanol drinking bouts in the subpopulations of high drinkers when paired with low drinkers. Lickometer drinking patterns analyzed by visual and by cross-correlation analyses demonstrated that pair housing did not increase the rate of subjects drinking in bouts occurring at the same time. The length of the avpr1a microsatellite did not predict susceptibility to peer influence or any other drinking behaviors. In summary, subpopulations of high drinkers were identified by fluid intake and number of drinking bouts, which did or did not lower their ethanol intake when paired with a low drinking peer, and these subpopulations should be explored for testing the efficacy of treatments to decrease ethanol use in groups that are likely to be responsive to different types of therapy.

  14. Life cycle assessment of camelina oil derived biodiesel and jet fuel in the Canadian Prairies. (United States)

    Li, Xue; Mupondwa, Edmund


    This study evaluated the environmental impact of biodiesel and hydroprocessed renewable jet fuel derived from camelina oil in terms of global warming potential, human health, ecosystem quality, and energy resource consumption. The life cycle inventory is based on production activities in the Canadian Prairies and encompasses activities ranging from agricultural production to oil extraction and fuel conversion. The system expansion method is used in this study to avoid allocation and to credit input energy to co-products associated with the products displaced in the market during camelina oil extraction and fuel processing. This is the preferred allocation method for LCA analysis in the context of most renewable and sustainable energy programs. The results show that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from 1 MJ of camelina derived biodiesel ranged from 7.61 to 24.72 g CO2 equivalent and 3.06 to 31.01 kg CO2/MJ equivalent for camelina HRJ fuel. Non-renewable energy consumption for camelina biodiesel ranged from 0.40 to 0.67 MJ/MJ; HRJ fuel ranged from -0.13 to 0.52 MJ/MJ. Camelina oil as a feedstock for fuel production accounted for the highest contribution to overall environmental performance, demonstrating the importance of reducing environmental burdens during the agricultural production process. Attaining higher seed yield would dramatically lower environmental impacts associated with camelina seed, oil, and fuel production. The lower GHG emissions and energy consumption associated with camelina in comparison with other oilseed derived fuel and petroleum fuel make camelina derived fuel from Canadian Prairies environmentally attractive. Crown Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Application of the new keystone-species concept to prairie dogs: How well does it work? (United States)

    Kotliar, N.B.


    It has been suggested that the keystone-species concept should be dropped from ecology and conservation, primarily because the concept is poorly defined. This prompted Power et al. (1996) to refine the definition: keystone species have large effects on community structure or ecosystem function (i.e., high overall importance), and this effect should be large relative to abundance (i.e., high community importance). Using prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) as an example, I review operational and conceptual difficulties encountered in applying this definition. As applied to prairie dogs, the implicit assumption that overall importance is a linear function of abundance is invalid. In addition, community importance is sensitive to abundance levels, the definition of community, and sampling scale. These problems arise largely from the equation for community importance, as used in conjunction with removal experiments at single abundance levels. I suggest that we shift from the current emphasis on the dualism between keystone and nonkeystone species and instead examine how overall and community importance vary (1) with abundance, (2) across spatial and temporal scales, and (3) under diverse ecological conditions. In addition, I propose that a third criterion be incorporated into the definition: keystone species perform roles not performed by other species or processes. Examination of how these factors vary among populations of keystone species should help identify the factors contributing to, or limiting, keystone-level functions, thereby increasing the usefulness of the keystone-species concept in ecology and conservation. Although the quantitative framework of Power et al. falls short of being fully operational, my conceptual guidelines may improve the usefulness of the keystone-species concept. Careful attention to the factors that limit keystone function will help avoid misplaced emphasis on keystone species at the expense of other species.

  16. Drought-induced recharge promotes long-term storage of porewater salinity beneath a prairie wetland (United States)

    Levy, Zeno F.; Rosenberry, Donald O.; Moucha, Robert; Mushet, David M.; Goldhaber, Martin B.; LaBaugh, James W.; Fiorentino, Anthony J.; Siegel, Donald I.


    Subsurface storage of sulfate salts allows closed-basin wetlands in the semiarid Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of North America to maintain moderate surface water salinity (total dissolved solids [TDS] from 1 to 10 g L-1), which provides critical habitat for communities of aquatic biota. However, it is unclear how the salinity of wetland ponds will respond to a recent shift in mid-continental climate to wetter conditions. To understand better the mechanisms that control surface-subsurface salinity exchanges during regional dry-wet climate cycles, we made a detailed geoelectrical study of a closed-basin prairie wetland (P1 in the Cottonwood Lake Study Area, North Dakota) that is currently experiencing record wet conditions. We found saline lenses of sulfate-rich porewater (TDS > 10 g L-1) contained in fine-grained wetland sediments 2-4 m beneath the bathymetric low of the wetland and within the currently ponded area along the shoreline of a prior pond stand (c. 1983). During the most recent drought (1988-1993), the wetland switched from a groundwater discharge to recharge function, allowing salts dissolved in surface runoff to move into wetland sediments beneath the bathymetric low of the basin. However, groundwater levels during this time did not decline to the elevation of the saline lenses, suggesting these features formed during more extended paleo-droughts and are stable in the subsurface on at least centennial timescales. We hypothesize a "drought-induced recharge" mechanism that allows wetland ponds to maintain moderate salinity under semiarid climate. Discharge of drought-derived saline groundwater has the potential to increase the salinity of wetland ponds during wet climate.

  17. Inter-annual to multi-decadal variability in prairie water resources over the past millennium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sauchyn, D.


    In the Prairie Provinces, declining levels have been recently recorded for various rivers and lakes, and further reductions are projected. These trends reflect human impact in terms of increasing water consumption and possibly anthropogenic climate change. From the coupling of hydrological models and climate change scenarios, researchers have projected lower future summer flows as global warming brings shorter warmer winters and longer and generally drier summers to western Canada. However, the detection and interpretation of trends from gauge records and model outputs are constrained by the relatively short perspective of decades and the uncertainties associated with projecting climate change and its impacts on hydrological regimes. A longer perspective on inter-annual to multi-decadal variability in water resources is available from moisture-sensitive tree-ring chronologies. We have established a dense network of low elevation chronologies spanning the headwaters of the Saskatchewan, Missouri, Churchill and Mackenzie River basins. Standardized tree-ring width for a large sample of trees and sites is a strong regional signal of annual and seasonal hydroclimate, and an especially good proxy of low water levels. Proxy streamflow records, up to 800 years in length, show quasi-periodic variability at inter-annual to multi-decadal scales that correspond to the tempo of sea-surface temperature anomalies. The industrial sponsors of our research, Manitoba Hydro and EPCOR, anticipate the use of our tree-ring reconstructions for informing forecasts of future water supplies and planning adaptation to climate change. Engineers from these companies, and more than 50 other water managers and planners from the Prairie Provinces, attended a workshop in March 2008 to explore potential applications of paleo-hydrological records to water resource management. (author)

  18. Patterns and drivers for wetland connections in the Prairie Pothole Region, United States (United States)

    Vanderhoof, Melanie; Christensen, Jay R.; Alexander, Laurie C.


    Ecosystem function in rivers, lakes and coastal waters depends on the functioning of upstream aquatic ecosystems, necessitating an improved understanding of watershed-scale interactions including variable surface-water flows between wetlands and streams. As surface water in the Prairie Pothole Region expands in wet years, surface-water connections occur between many depressional wetlands and streams. Minimal research has explored the spatial patterns and drivers for the abundance of these connections, despite their potential to inform resource management and regulatory programs including the U.S. Clean Water Act. In this study, wetlands were identified that did not intersect the stream network, but were shown with Landsat images (1990–2011) to become merged with the stream network as surface water expanded. Wetlands were found to spill into or consolidate with other wetlands within both small (2–10 wetlands) and large (>100 wetlands) wetland clusters, eventually intersecting a stream channel, most often via a riparian wetland. These surface-water connections occurred over a wide range of wetland distances from streams (averaging 90–1400 m in different ecoregions). Differences in the spatial abundance of wetlands that show a variable surface-water connection to a stream were best explained by smaller wetland-to-wetland distances, greater wetland abundance, and maximum surface-water extent. This analysis demonstrated that wetland arrangement and surface water expansion are important mechanisms for depressional wetlands to connect to streams and provides a first step to understanding the frequency and abundance of these surface-water connections across the Prairie Pothole Region.

  19. Climate Effects on Plant Range Distributions and Community Structure of Pacific Northwest Prairies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bridgham, Scott D. [Univ. of Oregon, Eugene, OR (United States); Johnson, Bart [Univ. of Oregon, Eugene, OR (United States)


    Pacific Northwest (PNW) prairies are an imperiled ecosystem that contain a large number of plant species with high fidelity to this habitat. The few remaining high-quality PNW prairies harbor a number of sensitive, rare, and endangered plant species that may be further at-risk with climate change. Thus, PNW prairies are an excellent model system to examine how climate change will affect the distribution of native plant species in grassland sites. Our experimental objectives were to determine: (i) how climate change will affect the range distribution of native plant species; (ii) what life history stages are most sensitive to climate change in a group of key indicator native species; (iii) the robustness of current restoration techniques and suites of species to changing climate, and in particular, the relative competitiveness of native species versus exotic invasive species; and (iv) the effects of climate change on carbon and nutrient cycling and soil-microbial-plant feedbacks. We addressed these objectives by experimentally increasing temperature 2.5 to 3.0 ºC above ambient with overhead infrared lamps and increasing wet-season precipitation by 20% above ambient in three upland prairie sites in central-western Washington, central-western Oregon, and southwestern Oregon from fall 2010 through 2012. Additional precipitation was applied within 2 weeks of when it fell so precipitation intensity was increased, particularly during the winter rainy season but with minimal additions during the summer dry season. These three sites also represent a 520-km natural climate gradient of increasing degree of severity of Mediterranean climate from north to south. After removing the extant vegetation, we planted a diverse suite of 12 native species that have their northern range limit someplace within the PNW in each experimental plot. An additional 20 more wide-spread native species were also planted into each plot. We found that recruitment of plant species within their ranges

  20. A comparison of cellulosic fuel yields and separated soil-surface CO2 fluxes in maize and prairie biofuel cropping systems (United States)

    Nichols, Virginia A.

    It has been suggested that strategic incorporation of perennial vegetation into agricultural landscapes could provide ecosystem services while maintaining agricultural productivity. To evaluate potential use of prairie as a Midwestern cellulosic feedstock, we investigated theoretical cellulosic fuel yields, as well as soil-surface carbon dioxide emissions of prairie-based biofuel systems as compared to maize-based systems on fertile soils in Boone County, IA, USA. Investigated systems were: a maize-soybean rotation grown for grain only, continuous maize grown for grain and stover both with and without a winter rye cover crop, and a 31-species reconstructed prairie grown with and without spring nitrogen fertilization for fall-harvested biomass. From 2009-2013, the highest producing system was N-fertilized prairie, averaging 10.4 Mg ha -1 yr-1 above-ground biomass with average harvest removals of 7.8 Mg ha-1 yr-1. The unfertilized prairie produced 7.4 Mg ha-1 yr-1, averaging harvests of 5.3 Mg ha-1 yr-1. Lowest cellulosic biomass harvests were realized from continuous maize systems, averaging 3.5 Mg ha -1 yr-1 when grown with, and 3.7 Mg ha-1 yr-1 when grown without a winter rye cover crop, respectively. Un-fertilized prairie biomass and maize stover had equivalent dietary conversion ratios at 330 g ethanol kg-1 dry biomass, but N-fertilized prairie was lower at 315. Over four years prairie systems averaged 1287 L cellulosic ethanol ha-1 yr-1 more than maize systems, with fertilization increasing prairie ethanol production by 865 L ha-1 yr-1. Harvested biomass accounted for >90% of ethanol yield variation. A major hurdle in carbon cycling studies is the separation of the soil-surface CO2 flux into its respective components. From 2012-2013 we used a shading method to separate soil-surface CO2 resulting from oxidation of soil organic matter and CO2 derived from live-root activity in three systems: unfertilized prairie, N-fertilized prairie, and continuous maize