WorldWideScience

Sample records for perennial forage species

  1. Evaluation of Seed and Forage Yield of Perennial Plants with Low Water Requirement in Abandoned Farming Lands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali gazanchian

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Drought is a natural phenomenon in arid and semi-arid regions of the world. It is created by low precipitation, high evaporation and reduced soil moisture. Today, they are the major threats to agricultural lands due to fluctuations in rainfall, limited water resources, wells salinization and subsequently abandoned farming lands. Iran is located on the world's dry belt and more than 90 percent of its area is located in the arid and semi-arid climatic regions. It has been reported that the annual rate of soil erosion is up to 33 tons per hectare and 5 to 6 times more than the standard limit. Also, 90% of the country's protein production comes from animals sources. Due to the lack of adequate forage production, the main burden of protein production is imposed on the natural resources and pastures. Therefore, In order to enhance soil stabilization and maintain its fertility, optimum use of off-season precipitations, preventing the flow of water and protecting the abandoned farming lands from the flood risk, increasing the water permeability in the soil, and helping to feed the underwater aquifers and finally the production of forage and seeds, the development of perennial plants cultivation is an important conservative practice. The aim of this study is to emphasize on the selection of the best perennial forage species with low water requirements and acceptable performance for renovation of the abandoned farming lands and moving towards sustainable agriculture approaches. Materials and Methods In this experiment, 10 species of perennial grasses (Agropyron elongatum Host., Secale montanum Guss., Festuca arundinaceae Schreb., Dactylis glomerata L., Agropyron intermedium Host., Agropyron repense L., Agropyron cristatum L., Panicum antidutale Retz., Bromus inermis Leyss., Bromus riparius Rehmann, Agropyron cristatum L. and two legumes includes Trifolium pratense L., Onobrychis sativa Lam. were studied at Asatan-e-Ghods Razavi farm in

  2. Considerations for Managing Agricultural Co-Existence between Transgenic and Non-Transgenic Cultivars of Outcrossing Perennial Forage Plants in Dairy Pastures

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    Kevin F. Smith

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Many of the major forage species used in agriculture are outcrossing and rely on the exchange of pollen between individuals for reproduction; this includes the major species used for dairy production in grazing systems: perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. and white clover (Trifolium repens L.. Cultivars of these species have been co-existing since contrasting cultivars were developed using plant breeding, but the consequences and need for strategies to manage co-existence have been made more prominent with the advent of genetic modification. Recent technological developments have seen the experimental evaluation of genetically modified (GM white clover and perennial ryegrass, although there is no current commercial growing of GM cultivars of these species. Co-existence frameworks already exist for two major cross-pollinated grain crops (canola and maize in Europe, and for alfalfa (Medicago sativa L. in the US, so many of the principles that the industry has developed for co-existence in these crops such as detection techniques, segregation, and agronomic management provide lessons and guidelines for outcrossing forage species, that are discussed in this paper.

  3. Genetic resources of perennial forage grasses in Serbia: Current state, broadening and evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sokolović Dejan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to historical background of vegetation development, geographical position, climate and relief, Serbia represents one of the 158 world biodiversity centres, based upon the number of plant species and territory size (biodiversity index 0.72. Large areas in Serbia are under natural grasslands and pastures, composed of forage grass species, and important as source of natural plant genetic diversity and germplasm for breeding. These eco-systems represent basic prerequisites for sustainable forage production, but very low potential of them is utilized and genetic resources are not protected. Family Poaceae is present in Serbia flora with 70 genera and among them from the aspect of forage production and quality, the most important are perennial Festuca, Lolium, Dactylis, Phleum, Bromus, Arrhenatherum, Poa and Agrostis species. Most of these grasses have been bred in Serbia and lot of cultivars were released. These cultivars contain autochthonous Serbian material and represent great and important resource of genetic variability. Therefore, collecting of new samples which are acclimatised to local eco-geographical conditions and including them in plant ex situ gene bank is of exceptional importance for further utilization in different plant breeding programmes as well as genetic resources protection. These autochthonous populations have natural variability and very often have satisfactory yielding performance in comparison with introduced cultivars, which referred them for direct phenotypic selection for cultivars release. Broadening of forage grasses genotypes collection is permanent objective of Serbian scientists. Collected accessions are being characterized and evaluated for important phenological, morphological and agronomical traits. In this paper genetic resources of forage grass species, their diversity and potentials, state of the grasses gene banks, as well as possibility for breeding of new cultivars has been analysed.

  4. Sheep numbers required for dry matter digestibility evaluations when fed fresh perennial ryegrass or forage rape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xuezhao; Krijgsman, Linda; Waghorn, Garry C; Kjestrup, Holly; Koolaard, John; Pacheco, David

    2017-03-01

    Research trials with fresh forages often require accurate and precise measurement of digestibility and variation in digestion between individuals, and the duration of measurement periods needs to be established to ensure reliable data are obtained. The variation is likely to be greater when freshly harvested feeds are given, such as perennial ryegrass ( Lolium perenne L.) and forage rape ( Brassica napus L.), because the nutrient composition changes over time and in response to weather conditions. Daily feed intake and faeces output data from a digestibility trial with these forages were used to calculate the effects of differing lengths of the measurement period and differing numbers of sheep, on the precision of digestibility, with a view towards development of a protocol. Sixteen lambs aged 8 months and weighing 33 kg at the commencement of the trial were fed either perennial ryegrass or forage rape (8/treatment group) over 2 periods with 35 d between measurements. They had been acclimatised to the diets, having grazed them for 42 d prior to 11 days of indoor measurements. The sheep numbers required for a digestibility trial with different combinations of acclimatisation and measurement period lengths were subsequently calculated for 3 levels of imposed precision upon the estimate of mean dry matter (DM) digestibility. It is recommended that if the standard error of the mean for digestibility is equal to or higher than 5 g/kg DM, and if sheep are already used to a fresh perennial ryegrass or forage rape diet, then a minimum of 6 animals are needed and 4 acclimatisation days being fed individually in metabolic crates followed by 7 days of measurement.

  5. Nitrogen removal and nitrate leaching for two perennial, sod-based forage systems receiving dairy effluent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodard, Kenneth R; French, Edwin C; Sweat, Lewin A; Graetz, Donald A; Sollenberger, Lynn E; Macoon, Bisoondat; Portier, Kenneth M; Rymph, Stuart J; Wade, Brett L; Prine, Gordon M; Van Horn, Harold H

    2003-01-01

    In northern Florida, year-round forage systems are used in dairy effluent sprayfields to reduce nitrate leaching. Our purpose was to quantify forage N removal and monitor nitrate N (NO3(-)-N) concentration below the rooting zone for two perennial, sod-based, triple-cropping systems over four 12-mo cycles (1996-2000). The soil is an excessively drained Kershaw sand (thermic, uncoated Typic Quartzip-samment). Effluent N rates were 500, 690, and 910 kg ha(-1) per cycle. Differences in N removal between a corn (Zea mays L.)-bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.)-rye (Secale cereale L.) system (CBR) and corn-perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth.)-rye system (CPR) were primarily related to the performance of the perennial forages. Nitrogen removal of corn (125-170 kg ha(-1)) and rye (62-90 kg ha(-1)) was relatively stable between systems and among cycles. The greatest N removal was measured for CBR in the first cycle (408 kg ha(-1)), with the bermudagrass removing an average of 191 kg N ha(-1). In later cycles, N removal for bermudagrass declined because dry matter (DM) yield declined. Yield and N removal of perennial peanut increased over the four cycles. Nitrate N concentrations below the rooting zone were lower for CBR than CPR in the first two cycles, but differences were inconsistent in the latter two. The CBR system maintained low NO3(-)-N leaching in the first cycle when the bermudagrass was the most productive; however, it was not a sustainable system for long-term prevention of NO3(-)-N leaching due to declining bermudagrass yield in subsequent cycles. For CPR, effluent N rates > or = 500 kg ha(-1) yr(-1) have the potential to negatively affect ground water quality.

  6. The perennial ryegrass GenomeZipper: targeted use of genome resources for comparative grass genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfeifer, Matthias; Martis, Mihaela; Asp, Torben; Mayer, Klaus F X; Lübberstedt, Thomas; Byrne, Stephen; Frei, Ursula; Studer, Bruno

    2013-02-01

    Whole-genome sequences established for model and major crop species constitute a key resource for advanced genomic research. For outbreeding forage and turf grass species like ryegrasses (Lolium spp.), such resources have yet to be developed. Here, we present a model of the perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) genome on the basis of conserved synteny to barley (Hordeum vulgare) and the model grass genome Brachypodium (Brachypodium distachyon) as well as rice (Oryza sativa) and sorghum (Sorghum bicolor). A transcriptome-based genetic linkage map of perennial ryegrass served as a scaffold to establish the chromosomal arrangement of syntenic genes from model grass species. This scaffold revealed a high degree of synteny and macrocollinearity and was then utilized to anchor a collection of perennial ryegrass genes in silico to their predicted genome positions. This resulted in the unambiguous assignment of 3,315 out of 8,876 previously unmapped genes to the respective chromosomes. In total, the GenomeZipper incorporates 4,035 conserved grass gene loci, which were used for the first genome-wide sequence divergence analysis between perennial ryegrass, barley, Brachypodium, rice, and sorghum. The perennial ryegrass GenomeZipper is an ordered, information-rich genome scaffold, facilitating map-based cloning and genome assembly in perennial ryegrass and closely related Poaceae species. It also represents a milestone in describing synteny between perennial ryegrass and fully sequenced model grass genomes, thereby increasing our understanding of genome organization and evolution in the most important temperate forage and turf grass species.

  7. The genome and transcriptome of perennial ryegrass mitochondria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Islam, Md. Shofiqul; Studer, Bruno; Byrne, Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Background: Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is one of the most important forage and turf grass species of temperate regions worldwide. Its mitochondrial genome is inherited maternally and contains genes that can influence traits of agricultural importance. Moreover, the DNA sequence...... and annotation of the complete mitochondrial genome from perennial ryegrass. Results: Intact mitochondria from perennial ryegrass leaves were isolated and used for mtDNA extraction. The mitochondrial genome was sequenced to a 167-fold coverage using the Roche 454 GS-FLX Titanium platform, and assembled...... of mitochondrial genomes has been established and compared for a large number of species in order to characterize evolutionary relationships.Therefore, it is crucial to understand the organization of the mitochondrial genome and how it varies between and within species. Here, we report the first de novo assembly...

  8. African Journal of Range and Forage Science - Vol 11, No 1 (1976)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journal of Range and Forage Science. ... Changes of biomass in some perennial grass species. ... The use of shoot dimensions to estimate the leaf mass or shoot area of certain indigenous ... Italian ryegrass as a perennial fodder crop.

  9. The Perennial Ryegrass GenomeZipper: Targeted Use of Genome Resources for Comparative Grass Genomics1[C][W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfeifer, Matthias; Martis, Mihaela; Asp, Torben; Mayer, Klaus F.X.; Lübberstedt, Thomas; Byrne, Stephen; Frei, Ursula; Studer, Bruno

    2013-01-01

    Whole-genome sequences established for model and major crop species constitute a key resource for advanced genomic research. For outbreeding forage and turf grass species like ryegrasses (Lolium spp.), such resources have yet to be developed. Here, we present a model of the perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) genome on the basis of conserved synteny to barley (Hordeum vulgare) and the model grass genome Brachypodium (Brachypodium distachyon) as well as rice (Oryza sativa) and sorghum (Sorghum bicolor). A transcriptome-based genetic linkage map of perennial ryegrass served as a scaffold to establish the chromosomal arrangement of syntenic genes from model grass species. This scaffold revealed a high degree of synteny and macrocollinearity and was then utilized to anchor a collection of perennial ryegrass genes in silico to their predicted genome positions. This resulted in the unambiguous assignment of 3,315 out of 8,876 previously unmapped genes to the respective chromosomes. In total, the GenomeZipper incorporates 4,035 conserved grass gene loci, which were used for the first genome-wide sequence divergence analysis between perennial ryegrass, barley, Brachypodium, rice, and sorghum. The perennial ryegrass GenomeZipper is an ordered, information-rich genome scaffold, facilitating map-based cloning and genome assembly in perennial ryegrass and closely related Poaceae species. It also represents a milestone in describing synteny between perennial ryegrass and fully sequenced model grass genomes, thereby increasing our understanding of genome organization and evolution in the most important temperate forage and turf grass species. PMID:23184232

  10. Complete chloroplast genome sequence of a major allogamous forage species, perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diekmann, Kerstin; Hodkinson, Trevor R; Wolfe, Kenneth H; van den Bekerom, Rob; Dix, Philip J; Barth, Susanne

    2009-06-01

    Lolium perenne L. (perennial ryegrass) is globally one of the most important forage and grassland crops. We sequenced the chloroplast (cp) genome of Lolium perenne cultivar Cashel. The L. perenne cp genome is 135 282 bp with a typical quadripartite structure. It contains genes for 76 unique proteins, 30 tRNAs and four rRNAs. As in other grasses, the genes accD, ycf1 and ycf2 are absent. The genome is of average size within its subfamily Pooideae and of medium size within the Poaceae. Genome size differences are mainly due to length variations in non-coding regions. However, considerable length differences of 1-27 codons in comparison of L. perenne to other Poaceae and 1-68 codons among all Poaceae were also detected. Within the cp genome of this outcrossing cultivar, 10 insertion/deletion polymorphisms and 40 single nucleotide polymorphisms were detected. Two of the polymorphisms involve tiny inversions within hairpin structures. By comparing the genome sequence with RT-PCR products of transcripts for 33 genes, 31 mRNA editing sites were identified, five of them unique to Lolium. The cp genome sequence of L. perenne is available under Accession number AM777385 at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, National Center for Biotechnology Information and DNA DataBank of Japan.

  11. Managing for Multifunctionality in Perennial Grain Crops

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    Ryan, Matthew R; Crews, Timothy E; Culman, Steven W; DeHaan, Lee R; Hayes, Richard C; Jungers, Jacob M; Bakker, Matthew G

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Plant breeders are increasing yields and improving agronomic traits in several perennial grain crops, the first of which is now being incorporated into commercial food products. Integration strategies and management guidelines are needed to optimize production of these new crops, which differ substantially from both annual grain crops and perennial forages. To offset relatively low grain yields, perennial grain cropping systems should be multifunctional. Growing perennial grains for several years to regenerate soil health before rotating to annual crops and growing perennial grains on sloped land and ecologically sensitive areas to reduce soil erosion and nutrient losses are two strategies that can provide ecosystem services and support multifunctionality. Several perennial cereals can be used to produce both grain and forage, and these dual-purpose crops can be intercropped with legumes for additional benefits. Highly diverse perennial grain polycultures can further enhance ecosystem services, but increased management complexity might limit their adoption. PMID:29662249

  12. Forage seeding in rangelands increases production and prevents weed invasion

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    Josh Davy

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Increasing forage productivity in the Sierra foothill rangelands would help sustain the livestock industry as land availability shrinks and lease rates rise, but hardly any studies have been done on forage selections. From 2009 to 2014, in one of the first long-term and replicated studies of seeding Northern California's Mediterranean annual rangeland, we compared the cover of 22 diverse forages to determine their establishment and survivability over time. Among the annual herbs, forage brassica (Brassica napus L. and chicory (Cichorium intybus L. proved viable options. Among the annual grasses, soft brome (Bromus hordeaceus and annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum performed well. However, these species will likely require frequent reseeding to maintain dominance. Long-term goals of sustained dominant cover (> 3 years are best achieved with perennial grasses. Perennial grasses that persisted with greater than 50% cover were Berber orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata, Flecha tall fescue (Lolium arundinaceum and several varieties of hardinggrass (Phalaris aquatica L., Perla koleagrass, Holdfast, Advanced AT. In 2014, these successful perennials produced over three times more dry matter (pounds per acre than the unseeded control and also suppressed annual grasses and yellow starthistle (Centaurea solstitialis L. cover.

  13. Effect of forage quality in faeces from different ruminant species fed high and low quality forage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jalali, A R; Nørgaard, P; Nielsen, M O

    2010-01-01

    Effect of forage quality in faeces from different ruminant species fed high and low quality forage......Effect of forage quality in faeces from different ruminant species fed high and low quality forage...

  14. The Perennial Ryegrass GenomeZipper – Targeted Use of Genome Resources for Comparative Grass Genomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfeiffer, Matthias; Martis, Mihaela; Asp, Torben

    2013-01-01

    (Lolium perenne) genome on the basis of conserved synteny to barley (Hordeum vulgare) and the model grass genome Brachypodium (Brachypodium distachyon) as well as rice (Oryza sativa) and sorghum (Sorghum bicolor). A transcriptome-based genetic linkage map of perennial ryegrass served as a scaffold......Whole-genome sequences established for model and major crop species constitute a key resource for advanced genomic research. For outbreeding forage and turf grass species like ryegrasses (Lolium spp.), such resources have yet to be developed. Here, we present a model of the perennial ryegrass...... to establish the chromosomal arrangement of syntenic genes from model grass species. This scaffold revealed a high degree of synteny and macrocollinearity and was then utilized to anchor a collection of perennial ryegrass genes in silico to their predicted genome positions. This resulted in the unambiguous...

  15. Effects of Tall Fescue Forage Mass on Steer Ingestive Behavior and Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tall fescue [Lolium arundinaceum (Schreb.) Darbysh] is a well adapted perennial pasture species utilized across the north-south transition zone of the United States and in similar environments worldwide. This 3-yr trial evaluated the influence of three forage masses (FM) on steer and pasture respons...

  16. More milk from forage: Milk production, blood metabolites, and forage intake of dairy cows grazing pasture mixtures and spatially adjacent monocultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pembleton, Keith G; Hills, James L; Freeman, Mark J; McLaren, David K; French, Marion; Rawnsley, Richard P

    2016-05-01

    There is interest in the reincorporation of legumes and forbs into pasture-based dairy production systems as a means of increasing milk production through addressing the nutritive value limitations of grass pastures. The experiments reported in this paper were undertaken to evaluate milk production, blood metabolite concentrations, and forage intake levels of cows grazing either pasture mixtures or spatially adjacent monocultures containing perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne), white clover (Trifolium repens), and plantain (Plantago lanceolata) compared with cows grazing monocultures of perennial ryegrass. Four replicate herds, each containing 4 spring-calving, cross-bred dairy cows, grazed 4 different forage treatments over the periods of early, mid, and late lactation. Forage treatments were perennial ryegrass monoculture (PRG), a mixture of white clover and plantain (CPM), a mixture of perennial ryegrass, white clover, and plantain (RCPM), and spatially adjacent monocultures (SAM) of perennial ryegrass, white clover, and plantain. Milk volume, milk composition, blood fatty acids, blood β-hydroxybutyrate, blood urea N concentrations, live weight change, and estimated forage intake were monitored over a 5-d response period occurring after acclimation to each of the forage treatments. The acclimation period for the early, mid, and late lactation experiments were 13, 13, and 10 d, respectively. Milk yield (volume and milk protein) increased for cows grazing the RCPM and SAM in the early lactation experiment compared with cows grazing the PRG, whereas in the mid lactation experiment, milk fat increased for the cows grazing the RCPM and SAM when compared with the PRG treatments. Improvements in milk production from grazing the RCPM and SAM treatments are attributed to improved nutritive value (particularly lower neutral detergent fiber concentrations) and a potential increase in forage intake. Pasture mixtures or SAM containing plantain and white clover could be a

  17. A comparative study of AMF diversity in annual and perennial plant species from semiarid gypsum soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alguacil, M. M.; Torrecillas, E.; Roldán, A.; Díaz, G.; Torres, P.

    2012-04-01

    The arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) communities composition regulate plant interactions and determine the structure of plant communities. In this study we analysed the diversity of AMF in the roots of two perennial gypsophyte plant species, Herniaria fruticosa and Senecio auricula, and an annual herbaceous species, Bromus rubens, growing in a gypsum soil from a semiarid area. The objective was to determine whether perennial and annual host plants support different AMF communities in their roots and whether there are AMF species that might be indicators of specific functional plant roles in these ecosystems. The roots were analysed by nested PCR, cloning, sequencing of the ribosomal DNA small subunit region and phylogenetic analysis. Twenty AMF sequence types, belonging to the Glomus group A, Glomus group B, Diversisporaceae, Acaulosporaceae, Archaeosporaceae and Paraglomeraceae, were identified. Both gypsophyte perennial species had differing compositions of the AMF community and higher diversity when compared with the annual species, showing preferential selection by specific AMF sequences types. B. rubens did not show host specificity, sharing the full composition of its AMF community with both perennial plant species. Seasonal variations in the competitiveness of AM fungi could explain the observed differences in AMF community composition, but this is still a working hypothesis that requires the analysis of further data obtained from a higher number of both annual and perennial plant species in order to be fully tested.

  18. Evaluation of nutritional value some forage species available in Iran ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Novin

    2012-07-17

    Jul 17, 2012 ... and chemical composition of forage species was estimated. MATERIALS AND METHODS ... head per day at 8.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. Forage samples (2 g DM with 2 mm screen ) were weighed into nylon bags ..... methods to study the kinetics of degradation of forage species, instead of the in situ technique, ...

  19. Optimal Foraging for Multiple Resources in Several Food Species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hengeveld, G.M.; Langevelde, van F.; Groen, T.A.; Knegt, de H.J.

    2009-01-01

    The concentrations of resources in forage are not perfectly balanced to the needs of an animal, and food species differ in these concentrations. Under many circumstances, animals should thus forage on multiple food species to attain the maximum and most balanced intake of several resources. In this

  20. Optimal foraging for multiple resources in several food species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hengeveld, G.M.; van Langevelde, F.; Groen, T.A.; de Knegt, H.J.

    2009-01-01

    The concentrations of resources in forage are not perfectly balanced to the needs of an animal, and food species differ in these concentrations. Under many circumstances, animals should thus forage on multiple food species to attain the maximum and most balanced intake of several resources. In this

  1. Floristic analysis of perennial species on flowerbeds in Belgrade with special attention on invasiveness of the recorded species

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    Popović Marija

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Urban areas are among the most important centres of invasive plant species distribution due to their richness in alien species. Because of that, a detailed floristic analysis of perennial flowerbeds was conducted in the central parks of Belgrade. A total of 53 perennial species were found, of which 55% were the alien species planted on 75% of the research area. Among them, two species (Aster novi belgii and Solidago canadensis are invasive and six species are potentially invasive in Serbia. These are planted on 5% and 20% of the flowerbeds, respectively. We can conclude that both the experts and institutions should be informed about the invasive species and potential damages. In the meantime, planting of native decorative species should be encouraged, since they will not pose a threat to natural habitats. Also, detailed research should be conducted in order to eradicate invasive and potentially invasive species from the surfaces around the research area.

  2. Changes of biomass in some perennial grass species. | M.C. ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Patterns of seasonal herbaceous biomass change in a burned, ungrazed savanna woodland are reported. A standard clipping technique was used and material farmed in the current season was separated from that formed in the previous season for three perennial grass species: Brachiaria nigropedata, Andropogon ...

  3. Genetic variation, population structure, and linkage disequilibrium in European elite germplasm of perennial ryegrass

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brazauskas, Gintaras; Lenk, Ingo; Pedersen, Morten Greve

    2011-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is a highly valued temperate climate grass species grown as forage crop and for amenity uses. Due to its outbreeding nature and recent domestication, a high degree of genetic diversity is expected among cultivars. The aim of this study was to assess the extent...... of linkage disequilibrium (LD) within European elite germplasm and to evaluate the appropriate methodology for genetic association mapping in perennial ryegrass. A high level of genetic diversity was observed in a set of 380 perennial ryegrass elite genotypes when genotyped with 40 SSRs and 2 STS markers...... and occurred within 0.4 cM across European varieties, when population structure was taken into consideration. However, an extended LD of up to 6.6 cM was detected within the variety Aberdart. High genetic diversity and rapid LD decay provide means for high resolution association mapping in elite materials...

  4. Energy from biomass: Results of two-years trials on annual and perennial Herba ceous species

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angelini, L.; Ceccarini, L.; Oggiano, N.; Bonari, E.

    1994-01-01

    In the framework of the PRisCa Project (Alternative Crops Research Project) a number of germ plasm collections were set up at the Department of Agronomy of the University of Pisa in order to identify annual and perennial herbaceous species utilizable for electric energy production. The first results deriving from trials carried out in 1992-93 are reported. The following species were used: 1) Annual: Sorghum bicolor, Hibiscus cannabinus, Pennisetum americanum, Kochia scoparia. 2) Perennial: Cynara cardunculus, Helianthus tuberosus, Miscantus sinensis, Arundo donax. Almost all species tested were represented by several genotypes. The total amount of species and genotype tested was 16. On all species, main phenological, biometric and productive determinations were performed. The hypothesized final use was intended to be electric power production by direct combustion and/or gasification. In addition, specific calorific value was also determined by adiabatic calorimeter as well as chemical composition of dry matter and ash composition. Species showing high yield potential, both from the quantitative and qualitative point of view, were Sorghum bicolor and Kochia scoparia (among annuals), as well as Miscanthus sinensis and Arundo donax (among perennials). Total dry matter yield ranged from about 23 tha -1 in the annual species to about 56 tha -1 in the perennials. The highest total calorific power obtainable from dry epigeic biomass was measured in Sorghum bicolor and Arundo donax - 4023 Kcal Kg -1 and 4166 Kcal Kg -1 respectively. The preliminary results suggest that vegetable biomass is environmentally-friendly and could contribute significantly to the world energy needs. (author)

  5. Perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth.) contains polyphenol oxidase (PPO) and PPO substrates that can reduce post-harvest proteolysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Michael L; Foster, Jamie L

    2013-08-15

    Studies of perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth.) suggest its hay and haylage have greater levels of rumen undegraded protein (RUP) than other legume forages such as alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.). Greater RUP can result in more efficient nitrogen utilization by ruminant animals with positive economic and environmental effects. We sought to determine whether, like red clover (Trifolium pretense L.), perennial peanut contains polyphenol oxidase (PPO) and PPO substrates that might be responsible for increased RUP. Perennial peanut extracts contain immunologically detectible PPO protein and high levels of PPO activity (>100 nkatal mg(-1) protein). Addition of caffeic acid (PPO substrate) to perennial peanut extracts depleted of endogenous substrates reduced proteolysis by 90%. Addition of phenolics prepared from perennial peanut leaves to extracts of either transgenic PPO-expressing or control (non-expressing) alfalfa showed peanut phenolics could reduce proteolysis >70% in a PPO-dependent manner. Two abundant likely PPO substrates are present in perennial peanut leaves including caftaric acid. Perennial peanut contains PPO and PPO substrates that together are capable of inhibiting post-harvest proteolysis, suggesting a possible mechanism for increased RUP in this forage. Research related to optimizing the PPO system in other forage crops will likely be applicable to perennial peanut. Published 2013. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  6. Soil nutrient heterogeneity alters competition between two perennial grass species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fransen, B.; Kroon, de H.; Berendse, F.

    2001-01-01

    Differences in root foraging behavior between species have been well documented, but the effects of these differences on belowground competitive ability are only beginning to be studied. Here we report the results of a competition experiment in homogeneous and heterogeneous soils between two species

  7. Horticultural markets promote alien species invasions: an Estonian case study of herbaceous perennials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Merle Ööpik

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Gardening is a popular pastime, but commercial horticulture is responsible for the introduction of alien species and contributes to invasions in a variety of ways. Although an extensive international literature is available on plant invasions, it is still important at the national level to examine the influence of local factors. Accordingly, 17 nurseries in Estonia that cultivated and sold perennial alien species were selected, and a list of species and prices was compiled. The relationships between species status, and factors such as their abundance in the wild were examined statistically. A qualitative list of the nationally problematic species among herbaceous perennials was also completed. A total of 880 taxa were recorded, of which 10.3% were native and 89.7% alien. In all, 87.3% of the alien species were still confined to cultivated areas. The ecological and socio-economic characteristics of the taxa were described, and lists of the families of casual, naturalised and invasive aliens were provided. Both native and increasing wild alien species have a very similar profile on the market. Alien species that are less expensive, widely available and have more cultivars per species on the market are also more likely to escape. The invasive status and abundance of escaped aliens in an area increases with residence time. In general, socio-economic factors create new and reflect previous propagule pressures from commercial horticulture, which continuously increase the likelihood of alien species surviving and invading new areas. Our findings suggest that these national socio-economic market-related factors explain much of the invasiveness of various perennial ornamental species, and therefore regional and national authorities urgently need to regulate and control the ornamental plant trade to diminish the risk of new invasions.

  8. Accuracy of Genomic Prediction in a Commercial Perennial Ryegrass Breeding Program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dario Fè

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The implementation of genomic selection (GS in plant breeding, so far, has been mainly evaluated in crops farmed as homogeneous varieties, and the results have been generally positive. Fewer results are available for species, such as forage grasses, that are grown as heterogenous families (developed from multiparent crosses in which the control of the genetic variation is far more complex. Here we test the potential for implementing GS in the breeding of perennial ryegrass ( L. using empirical data from a commercial forage breeding program. Biparental F and multiparental synthetic (SYN families of diploid perennial ryegrass were genotyped using genotyping-by-sequencing, and phenotypes for five different traits were analyzed. Genotypes were expressed as family allele frequencies, and phenotypes were recorded as family means. Different models for genomic prediction were compared by using practically relevant cross-validation strategies. All traits showed a highly significant level of genetic variance, which could be traced using the genotyping assay. While there was significant genotype × environment (G × E interaction for some traits, accuracies were high among F families and between biparental F and multiparental SYN families. We have demonstrated that the implementation of GS in grass breeding is now possible and presents an opportunity to make significant gains for various traits.

  9. Transcriptional Profiling and Identification of Heat-Responsive Genes in Perennial Ryegrass by RNA-Sequencing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kehua Wang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne is one of the most widely used forage and turf grasses in the world due to its desirable agronomic qualities. However, as a cool-season perennial grass species, high temperature is a major factor limiting its performance in warmer and transition regions. In this study, a de novo transcriptome was generated using a cDNA library constructed from perennial ryegrass leaves subjected to short-term heat stress treatment. Then the expression profiling and identification of perennial ryegrass heat response genes by digital gene expression analyses was performed. The goal of this work was to produce expression profiles of high temperature stress responsive genes in perennial ryegrass leaves and further identify the potentially important candidate genes with altered levels of transcript, such as those genes involved in transcriptional regulation, antioxidant responses, plant hormones and signal transduction, and cellular metabolism. The de novo assembly of perennial ryegrass transcriptome in this study obtained more total and annotated unigenes compared to previously published ones. Many DEGs identified were genes that are known to respond to heat stress in plants, including HSFs, HSPs, and antioxidant related genes. In the meanwhile, we also identified four gene candidates mainly involved in C4 carbon fixation, and one TOR gene. Their exact roles in plant heat stress response need to dissect further. This study would be important by providing the gene resources for improving heat stress tolerance in both perennial ryegrass and other cool-season perennial grass plants.

  10. Invasive clonal plant species have a greater root-foraging plasticity than non-invasive ones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keser, Lidewij H; Dawson, Wayne; Song, Yao-Bin; Yu, Fei-Hai; Fischer, Markus; Dong, Ming; van Kleunen, Mark

    2014-03-01

    Clonality is frequently positively correlated with plant invasiveness, but which aspects of clonality make some clonal species more invasive than others is not known. Due to their spreading growth form, clonal plants are likely to experience spatial heterogeneity in nutrient availability. Plasticity in allocation of biomass to clonal growth organs and roots may allow these plants to forage for high-nutrient patches. We investigated whether this foraging response is stronger in species that have become invasive than in species that have not. We used six confamilial pairs of native European clonal plant species differing in invasion success in the USA. We grew all species in large pots under homogeneous or heterogeneous nutrient conditions in a greenhouse, and compared their nutrient-foraging response and performance. Neither invasive nor non-invasive species showed significant foraging responses to heterogeneity in clonal growth organ biomass or in aboveground biomass of clonal offspring. Invasive species had, however, a greater positive foraging response in terms of root and belowground biomass than non-invasive species. Invasive species also produced more total biomass. Our results suggest that the ability for strong root foraging is among the characteristics promoting invasiveness in clonal plants.

  11. Foraging intention affects whether willow tits call to attract members of mixed-species flocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Toshitaka N; Kutsukake, Nobuyuki

    2017-06-01

    Understanding how individual behaviour influences the spatial and temporal distribution of other species is necessary to resolve the complex structure of species assemblages. Mixed-species bird flocks provide an ideal opportunity to investigate this issue, because members of the flocks are involved in a variety of behavioural interactions between species. Willow tits ( Poecile montanus ) often produce loud calls when visiting a new foraging patch to recruit other members of mixed-species flocks. The costs and benefits of flocking would differ with individual foraging behaviours (i.e. immediate consumption or caching); thus, willow tits may adjust the production of loud calls according to their foraging intention. In this study, we investigated the link between foraging decisions and calling behaviour in willow tits and tested its influence on the temporal cohesion with members of mixed-species flocks. Observations at experimental foraging patches showed that willow tits produced more calls when they consumed food items compared with when they cached them. Playback experiments revealed that these calls attracted flock members and helped to maintain their presence at foraging patches. Thus, willow tits adjusted calling behaviour according to their foraging intention, thereby coordinating the associations with members of mixed-species flocks. Our findings demonstrate the influence of individual decision-making on temporal cohesion with other species and highlight the importance of interspecific communication in mixed-species flocking dynamics.

  12. Effect of forage type, harvesting time and exogenous enzyme application on degradation characteristics measured using in vitro technique

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moharrery, Ali; Hvelplund, Torben; Weisbjerg, Martin Riis

    2009-01-01

    Five forage species cut at different harvest times were studied for their degradation characteristics using in vitro digestibility technique. The forage species were two grasses and three legumes growing in two seasons (spring growth and second re-growth). Grass and legume forages were harvested...... at three harvesting times being early (E), middle (M) and late (L), both during the spring growth and the second re-growth. The grasses included perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne), and festulolium (XFestulolium), and the legumes included white clover (Trifolium repens), red clover (Trifolium pratense......) and neutral detergent fibre (aNDFom) degradation profiles were fitted to an exponential equation. The fractional rate of degradation (c) of DM or aNDFom did vary among the forage species and was highest for the legumes. The potential degradability ranged from 580 to 870 g/kg for DM and from 380 to 900 g...

  13. De novo assembly of the perennial ryegrass transcriptome using an RNA-Seq strategy.

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    Jacqueline D Farrell

    Full Text Available Perennial ryegrass is a highly heterozygous outbreeding grass species used for turf and forage production. Heterozygosity can affect de-Bruijn graph assembly making de novo transcriptome assembly of species such as perennial ryegrass challenging. Creating a reference transcriptome from a homozygous perennial ryegrass genotype can circumvent the challenge of heterozygosity. The goals of this study were to perform RNA-sequencing on multiple tissues from a highly inbred genotype to develop a reference transcriptome. This was complemented with RNA-sequencing of a highly heterozygous genotype for SNP calling.De novo transcriptome assembly of the inbred genotype created 185,833 transcripts with an average length of 830 base pairs. Within the inbred reference transcriptome 78,560 predicted open reading frames were found of which 24,434 were predicted as complete. Functional annotation found 50,890 transcripts with a BLASTp hit from the Swiss-Prot non-redundant database, 58,941 transcripts with a Pfam protein domain and 1,151 transcripts encoding putative secreted peptides. To evaluate the reference transcriptome we targeted the high-affinity K+ transporter gene family and found multiple orthologs. Using the longest unique open reading frames as the reference sequence, 64,242 single nucleotide polymorphisms were found. One thousand sixty one open reading frames from the inbred genotype contained heterozygous sites, confirming the high degree of homozygosity.Our study has developed an annotated, comprehensive transcriptome reference for perennial ryegrass that can aid in determining genetic variation, expression analysis, genome annotation, and gene mapping.

  14. Contrasting Foraging Patterns: Testing Resource-Concentration and Dilution Effects with Pollinators and Seed Predators

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    Alexandria Wenninger

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Resource concentration effects occur when high resource density patches attract and support more foragers than low density patches. In contrast, resource dilution effects can occur if high density patches support fewer consumers. In this study, we examined the foraging rates of pollinators and seed predators on two perennial plant species (Rudbeckia triloba and Verbena stricta as functions of resource density. Specifically, we examined whether resource-dense patches (densities of flower and seeds on individual plants resulted in greater visitation and seed removal rates, respectively. We also examined whether foraging rates were context-dependent by conducting the study in two sites that varied in resource densities. For pollinators, we found negative relationships between the density of flowers per plant and visitation rates, suggesting dilution effects. For seed predators, we found positive relationships consistent with concentration effects. Saturation effects and differences in foraging behaviors might explain the opposite relationships; most of the seed predators were ants (recruitment-based foragers, and pollinators were mostly solitary foragers. We also found that foraging rates were site-dependent, possibly due to site-level differences in resource abundance and consumer densities. These results suggest that these two plant species may benefit from producing as many flowers as possible, given high levels of pollination and low seed predation.

  15. Use of biosolids to enhance rangeland forage quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, Michael J; Vasquez, Issaak Romero; Vutran, MaiAnh; Schmitz, Mark; Brobst, Robert B

    2010-05-01

    Biosolids land application was demonstrated to be a potentially cost-effective means for restoring forage productivity and enhancing soil-moisture-holding capacity on disturbed rangelands. By land-applying aerobically digested, anaerobically digested, composted, and lime-stabilized biosolids on rangeland test plots at rates of up to 20 times (20X) the estimated nitrogen-based agronomic rate, forage yields were found to increase from 132.8 kg/ha (118.2 lb/ac) (control plots) to 1182.3 kg/ha (1052.8 lb/ac). Despite the environmental benefits associated with increased forage yield (e.g., reduced soil erosion, improved drainage, and enhanced terrestrial carbon sequestration), the type of forage generated both before and after biosolids land application was found to be dominated by invasive weeds, all of which were characterized as having fair to poor nutritional value. Opportunistic and shallow rooting invasive weeds not only have marginal nutritional value, they also limit the establishment of native perennial grasses and thus biodiversity. Many of the identified invasive species (e.g., Cheatgrass) mature early, a characteristic that significantly increases the fuel loads that support the increased frequency and extent of western wildfires.

  16. Quality of the forage apparently consumed by beef calves in natural grassland under fertilization and oversown with cool season forage species

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    Denise Adelaide Gomes Elejalde

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the chemical composition of the forage apparently consumed by steers in a natural grassland on region of Campanha, in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, subjected or not to different inputs: NP - natural pasture without inputs; FNP - fertilized natural pasture and INP - improved natural grassland with fertilization and over-seeded with cultivated winter species. Three Angus steers testers and a variable number of regulator animals per experimental unit were utilized in order to maintain 13 kg of DM/100 kg of live weight (LW as forage allowance. One time at each season, hand plucking samples were performed along the daily grazing time simulating forage harvested by the animals. The collected samples after drying and grind were submitted to chemical analysis to determine the forage quality. Except in winter and spring, the values of neutral detergent fiber were higher than the critical value of 550 g/kg of DM, which could limit forage intake, demonstrating that the values of forage on offer provided (15.6; 13.7; 13.5; 15.8 kg of DM/100 kg of LW/day in summer, autumn, winter and spring, respectively were not restrictive to intake. The oversowing of winter cultivated species or fertilization positively alter the degradable fiber content. The seasons had marked influence on the chemical composition of forage apparently consumed; positively increasing some fractions of forage chemical composition in the seasons in which native or cultivated winter species increased their participation. The forage chemical composition is the determining factor in animal performance in natural pasture.

  17. B chromosomes are associated with redistribution of genetic recombination towards lower recombination chromosomal regions in perennial ryegrass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harper, John; Phillips, Dylan; Thomas, Ann; Gasior, Dagmara; Evans, Caron; Powell, Wayne; King, Julie; King, Ian; Jenkins, Glyn; Armstead, Ian

    2018-04-09

    Supernumerary 'B' chromosomes are non-essential components of the genome present in a range of plant and animal species-including many grasses. Within diploid and polyploid ryegrass and fescue species, including the forage grass perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.), the presence of B chromosomes has been reported as influencing both chromosome pairing and chiasma frequencies. In this study, the effects of the presence/absence of B chromosomes on genetic recombination has been investigated through generating DArT (Diversity Arrays Technology) marker genetic maps for six perennial ryegrass diploid populations, the pollen parents of which contained either two B or zero B chromosomes. Through genetic and cytological analyses of these progeny and their parents, we have identified that, while overall cytological estimates of chiasma frequencies were significantly lower in pollen mother cells with two B chromosomes as compared with zero B chromosomes, the recombination frequencies within some marker intervals were actually increased, particularly for marker intervals in lower recombination regions of chromosomes, namely pericentromeric regions. Thus, in perennial ryegrass, the presence of two B chromosomes redistributed patterns of meiotic recombination in pollen mother cells in ways which could increase the range of allelic variation available to plant breeders.

  18. DIMENSIONS OF CARCASS AND INTERNAL ORGANS IN YOUNG SHEEP, UNDER CONDITIONS OF GRAZING ON ASSOCIATIONS OF PERENNIAL GRAMINACEOUS AND LEGUME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. DRAGOMIR

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available The temporary pastures’ floristic structure influences directly the growth and development of young sheep during grazing. The associations, beside the graminaceous and perennial legume species (white clover and birdsfoot trefoil, contribute mostly to the increase of carcass dimension and organ weight. The quality of the forage from such a pasture, better balanced in terms of energy and protein, influences all growth and development parameters in young sheep.

  19. Determination of Phytoestrogen Content in Fresh-Cut Legume Forage

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    Pavlína Hloucalová

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study was to determine phytoestrogen content in fresh-cut legume forage. This issue has been much discussed in recent years in connection with the health and safety of feedstuffs and thus livestock health. The experiments were carried out on two experimental plots at Troubsko and Vatín, Czech Republic during June and July in 2015. Samples were collected of the four forage legume species perennial red clover (variety “Amos”, alfalfa (variety “Holyně”, and annuals Persian clover and Alexandrian clover. Forage was sampled twice at regular three to four day intervals leading up to harvest and a third time on the day of harvest. Fresh and wilted material was analyzed using liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS. Higher levels ( p < 0.05 of isoflavones biochanin A (3.697 mg·g −1 of dry weight and formononetin (4.315 mg·g −1 of dry weight were found in red clover than in other species. The highest isoflavone content was detected in red clover, reaching 1.001% of dry matter ( p < 0.05, representing a risk for occurrence of reproduction problems and inhibited secretion of animal estrogen. The phytoestrogen content was particularly increased in wilted forage. Significant isoflavone reduction was observed over three to four day intervals leading up to harvest.

  20. Productivity and carbon footprint of perennial grass-forage legume intercropping strategies with high or low nitrogen fertilizer input

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Lachouani, Petra; Knudsen, Marie Trydeman

    2016-01-01

    with either a high or a low rate of mineral nitrogen (N) fertilizer. Life cycle assessment (LCA) was used to evaluate the carbon footprint (global warming potential) of the grassland management including measured nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions after sward incorporation. Without applying any mineral N......A three-season field experiment was established and repeated twice with spring barley used as cover crop for different perennial grass-legume intercrops followed by a full year pasture cropping and winter wheat after sward incorporation. Two fertilization regimes were applied with plots fertilized...... carbon footprint. Thus, a reduction in N fertilizer application rates in the low input systems offsets increased N2O emissions after forage legume treatments compared to grass plots due to the N fertilizer production-related emissions. When including the subsequent wheat yield in the total aboveground...

  1. Fatty acid composition of forage herb species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Warner, D.; Jensen, Søren Krogh; Cone, J.W.

    2010-01-01

    The use of alternative forage species in grasslands for intensive livestock production is receiving renewed attention. Data on fatty acid composition of herbs are scarce, so four herbs (Plantago lanceolata, Achillea millefolium, Cichorium intybus, Pastinaca sativa) and one grass species (timothy......, Phleum pratense) were sown in a cutting trial. The chemical composition and concentration of fatty acids (FA) of individual species were determined during the growing season. Concentrations of crude protein and FA were generally higher in the herbs than in timothy. C. intybus had the highest nutritive...

  2. Enteric methane production and ruminal fermentation from forage brassica diets fed in continuous culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brassicas provide forage for livestock during the late fall when traditional perennial cool-season forages are not productive. However, little research exists on ruminal fermentation and methane(CH4) production of brassicas fed as forage. A continuous culture fermentor system was used to assess nutr...

  3. Lambs Fed Fresh Winter Forage Rape (Brassica napus L.) Emit Less Methane than Those Fed Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.), and Possible Mechanisms behind the Difference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xuezhao; Henderson, Gemma; Cox, Faith; Molano, German; Harrison, Scott J.; Luo, Dongwen; Janssen, Peter H.; Pacheco, David

    2015-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to examine long-term effects of feeding forage rape (Brassica napus L.) on methane yields (g methane per kg of feed dry matter intake), and to propose mechanisms that may be responsible for lower emissions from lambs fed forage rape compared to perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.). The lambs were fed fresh winter forage rape or ryegrass as their sole diet for 15 weeks. Methane yields were measured using open circuit respiration chambers, and were 22-30% smaller from forage rape than from ryegrass (averages of 13.6 g versus 19.5 g after 7 weeks, and 17.8 g versus 22.9 g after 15 weeks). The difference therefore persisted consistently for at least 3 months. The smaller methane yields from forage rape were not related to nitrate or sulfate in the feed, which might act as alternative electron acceptors, or to the levels of the potential inhibitors glucosinolates and S-methyl L-cysteine sulfoxide. Ruminal microbial communities in forage rape-fed lambs were different from those in ryegrass-fed lambs, with greater proportions of potentially propionate-forming bacteria, and were consistent with less hydrogen and hence less methane being produced during fermentation. The molar proportions of ruminal acetate were smaller and those of propionate were greater in forage rape-fed lambs, consistent with the larger propionate-forming populations and less hydrogen production. Forage rape contained more readily fermentable carbohydrates and less structural carbohydrates than ryegrass, and was more rapidly degraded in the rumen, which might favour this fermentation profile. The ruminal pH was lower in forage rape-fed lambs, which might inhibit methanogenic activity, shifting the rumen fermentation to more propionate and less hydrogen and methane. The significance of these two mechanisms remains to be investigated. The results suggest that forage rape is a potential methane mitigation tool in pastoral-based sheep production systems. PMID:25803688

  4. Genetic linkage mapping in an F2 perennial ryegrass population using DArT markers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tomaszewski, Céline; Byrne, Stephen; Foito, Alexandra

    2012-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass is the principal forage grass species used in temperate agriculture. In recent years, significant efforts have been made to develop molecular marker strategies to allow cost-effective characterization of a large number of loci simultaneously. One such strategy involves using DAr......T markers, and a DArT array has recently been developed for the Lolium-Festuca complex. In this study, we report the first use of the DArTFest array to generate a genetic linkage map based on 326 markers in a Lolium perenne F2 population, consisting of 325 genotypes. For proof of concept, the map was used...

  5. Effects of habitat composition and landscape structure on worker foraging distances of five bumble bee species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Redhead, John W; Dreier, Stephanie; Bourke, Andrew F G; Heard, Matthew S; Jordan, William C; Sumner, Seirian; Wang, Jinliang; Carvell, Claire

    2016-04-01

    Bumble bees (Bombus spp.) are important pollinators of both crops and wildflowers. Their contribution to this essential ecosystem service has been threatened over recent decades by changes in land use, which have led to declines in their populations. In order to design effective conservation measures, it is important to understand the effects of variation in landscape composition and structure on the foraging activities of worker bumble bees. This is because the viability of individual colonies is likely to be affected by the trade-off between the energetic costs of foraging over greater distances and the potential gains from access to additional resources. We used field surveys, molecular genetics, and fine resolution remote sensing to estimate the locations of wild bumble bee nests and to infer foraging distances across a 20-km² agricultural landscape in southern England, UK. We investigated five species, including the rare B. ruderatus and ecologically similar but widespread B. hortorum. We compared worker foraging distances between species and examined how variation in landscape composition and structure affected foraging distances at the colony level. Mean worker foraging distances differed significantly between species. Bombus terrestris, B. lapidarius, and B. ruderatus exhibited significantly greater mean foraging distances (551, 536, and 501 m, respectively) than B. hortorum and B. pascuorum (336 and 272 m, respectively). There was wide variation in worker foraging distances between colonies of the same species, which was in turn strongly influenced by the amount and spatial configuration of available foraging habitats. Shorter foraging distances were found for colonies where the local landscape had high coverage and low fragmentation of semi-natural vegetation, including managed agri-environmental field margins. The strength of relationships between different landscape variables and foraging distance varied between species, for example the strongest

  6. Modeling plant interspecific interactions from experiments with perennial crop mixtures to predict optimal combinations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halty, Virginia; Valdés, Matías; Tejera, Mauricio; Picasso, Valentín; Fort, Hugo

    2017-12-01

    The contribution of plant species richness to productivity and ecosystem functioning is a longstanding issue in ecology, with relevant implications for both conservation and agriculture. Both experiments and quantitative modeling are fundamental to the design of sustainable agroecosystems and the optimization of crop production. We modeled communities of perennial crop mixtures by using a generalized Lotka-Volterra model, i.e., a model such that the interspecific interactions are more general than purely competitive. We estimated model parameters -carrying capacities and interaction coefficients- from, respectively, the observed biomass of monocultures and bicultures measured in a large diversity experiment of seven perennial forage species in Iowa, United States. The sign and absolute value of the interaction coefficients showed that the biological interactions between species pairs included amensalism, competition, and parasitism (asymmetric positive-negative interaction), with various degrees of intensity. We tested the model fit by simulating the combinations of more than two species and comparing them with the polycultures experimental data. Overall, theoretical predictions are in good agreement with the experiments. Using this model, we also simulated species combinations that were not sown. From all possible mixtures (sown and not sown) we identified which are the most productive species combinations. Our results demonstrate that a combination of experiments and modeling can contribute to the design of sustainable agricultural systems in general and to the optimization of crop production in particular. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  7. Effects of forage species or concentrate finishing on animal performance, carcass and meat quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duckett, S K; Neel, J P S; Lewis, R M; Fontenot, J P; Clapham, W M

    2013-03-01

    Angus-cross steers (n = 128; initial BW = 270 ± 3.8 kg) were used in a 3-yr study to assess effects of forage species grazed before slaughter versus concentrate finishing on carcass and meat quality. At the completion of the stockering phase, steers were randomly allotted to mixed pasture (MP; n = 36/yr) or corn-silage concentrate (CON; n = 12/yr) finishing treatments. At 40 d before harvest, MP steers were randomly divided into 3 forage species treatments: alfalfa (AL), pearl millet (PM), or mixed pasture (MP). Average daily BW gain was greater (P = 0.001) for CON than for forage-finished (FOR) steers during the early and overall finishing phase. During the late finishing phase when FOR steers were grazing difference forage species, ADG was greater (P = 0.03) for PM than MP or AL. Harvest weight and HCW were greater (P animal performance. Total fat percentage of the 9th to 11th rib section was 46% less(P = 0.028) for FOR than CON due to reductions (P 0.78) between CON and FOR and were not altered (P > 0.40) by forage species. Trained sensory panel juiciness, initial tenderness, and overall tenderness scores did not differ (P > 0.17) by finishing treatment or forage species. Beef flavor intensity was greater (P 0.05) total lipid content of the LM. Oleic acid concentration and total MUFA of the LM were 21% and 22% less (P = 0.001) for FOR than CON. Concentrations of all individual [linolenic acid, eicosapentaenoic (EPA), docosapentaenoic (DPA), and docosadexaenoic (DHA) acids] and total n-3 fatty acids were greater (P carcass weight with same time endpoints and accelerates deposition of MUFA in comparison with FOR, which reduces carcass weight and fat deposition but maintains high concentrations of n-3 and CLA fatty acids. Finishing system or forage species grazed 40 d before slaughter did not alter beef tenderness but FOR had greater off-flavors according to both trained and descriptive sensory panelists.

  8. Reproductive biology of the native forage grass Trichloris crinita (Poaceae, Chloridoideae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozub, P C; Barboza, K; Galdeano, F; Quarin, C L; Cavagnaro, J B; Cavagnaro, P F

    2017-05-01

    Trichloris crinita is a perennial forage grass species native to arid regions of the American continent. Due to its extensive area of distribution, good forage quality and resistance to drought and grazing, this species is widely utilised as forage and for revegetation purposes in environments with low water availability. Despite its importance, genetic improvement of T. crinita has been very limited, partly as consequence of the lack of knowledge on its mode of reproduction. In the present work, we studied the reproductive biology of T. crinita by means of embryological analyses, flow cytometric seed screen (FCSS), self-compatibility tests and progeny testing with morphological and molecular markers. Cytological analyses revealed embryo sacs with eight nuclei and of Polygonum type for all T. crinita accessions analysed. FCSS histograms exhibited two clear peaks corresponding to 2C and 3C DNA content, indicating embryo sacs of sexual origin. Controlled pollination experiments designed to evaluate seed set (%) demonstrated that T. crinita is self-compatible, whereas results from morphological and simple sequence repeat (SSR) marker analysis of progeny revealed lack of outcrossing. Together, these results indicate that T. crinita reproduces sexually. It is a self-compatible and autogamous species. It is expected that these data will have a positive impact in the genetics and breeding of this species, and therefore contribute to its proper utilisation in arid regions. © 2017 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  9. Nectar yeasts in the tall Larkspur Delphinium barbeyi (Ranunculaceae and effects on components of pollinator foraging behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert N Schaeffer

    Full Text Available Microorganisms frequently colonize the nectar of angiosperm species. Though capable of altering a suite of traits important for pollinator attraction, few studies exist that test the degree to which they mediate pollinator foraging behavior. The objective of our study was to fill this gap by assessing the abundance and diversity of yeasts associated with the perennial larkspur Delphinium barbeyi (Ranunculaceae and testing whether their presence affected components of pollinator foraging behavior. Yeasts frequently colonized D. barbeyi nectar, populating 54-77% of flowers examined depending on site. Though common, the yeast community was species-poor, represented by a single species, Metschnikowia reukaufii. Female-phase flowers of D. barbeyi were more likely to have higher densities of yeasts in comparison to male-phase flowers. Pollinators were likely vectors of yeasts, as virgin (unvisited flowers rarely contained yeasts compared to flowers open to pollinator visitation, which were frequently colonized. Finally, pollinators responded positively to the presence of yeasts. Bombus foragers both visited and probed more flowers inoculated with yeasts in comparison to uninoculated controls. Taken together, our results suggest that variation in the occurrence and density of nectar-inhabiting yeasts have the potential to alter components of pollinator foraging behavior linked to pollen transfer and plant fitness.

  10. Nectar Yeasts in the Tall Larkspur Delphinium barbeyi (Ranunculaceae) and Effects on Components of Pollinator Foraging Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaeffer, Robert N.; Phillips, Cody R.; Duryea, M. Catherine; Andicoechea, Jonathan; Irwin, Rebecca E.

    2014-01-01

    Microorganisms frequently colonize the nectar of angiosperm species. Though capable of altering a suite of traits important for pollinator attraction, few studies exist that test the degree to which they mediate pollinator foraging behavior. The objective of our study was to fill this gap by assessing the abundance and diversity of yeasts associated with the perennial larkspur Delphinium barbeyi (Ranunculaceae) and testing whether their presence affected components of pollinator foraging behavior. Yeasts frequently colonized D. barbeyi nectar, populating 54–77% of flowers examined depending on site. Though common, the yeast community was species-poor, represented by a single species, Metschnikowia reukaufii. Female-phase flowers of D. barbeyi were more likely to have higher densities of yeasts in comparison to male-phase flowers. Pollinators were likely vectors of yeasts, as virgin (unvisited) flowers rarely contained yeasts compared to flowers open to pollinator visitation, which were frequently colonized. Finally, pollinators responded positively to the presence of yeasts. Bombus foragers both visited and probed more flowers inoculated with yeasts in comparison to uninoculated controls. Taken together, our results suggest that variation in the occurrence and density of nectar-inhabiting yeasts have the potential to alter components of pollinator foraging behavior linked to pollen transfer and plant fitness. PMID:25272164

  11. Composition and foraging behaviour of mixed-species flocks in two ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Enlarged flock size resulted from a general increase in flocking tendency of all species. At the species level, the Long-billed Crombec Sylvietta rufescens and the Chinspot Batis Batis molitor showed clear feeding benefits within flocks, whereas tits obtained no feeding benefit. Crombecs and batises also changed foraging ...

  12. Genes and quantitative trait loci (QTL) controlling trace element concentrations in perennial grasses grown on phytotoxic soil contaminated with heavy metals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perennial grasses cover diverse soils throughout the world, including sites contaminated with heavy metals, producing forages that must be safe for livestock and wildlife. Chromosome regions known as quantitative trait loci (QTLs) controlling forage mineral concentrations were mapped in a populatio...

  13. A systems approach for the evaluation of ethanol production based on forages

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alvo, P. [McGill Univ., Ste. Anne de Bellevue, PQ (Canada). Macdonald Coll.; Savoie, P. [Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Quebec, PQ (Canada). Saine-Foy Research Centre; Tremblay, D. [Laval Univ., Quebec, PQ (Canada). Dept. de Genie Rural; Emond, J.-P.; Turcotte, G. [Laval Univ., Quebec City, PQ (Canada). Dept. de Sciences et Technologie des Aliments

    1996-04-01

    A systems approach is proposed to simultaneously consider the agronomic aspects of forage production and the processing aspects related to the extraction of a glucose or xylose substrate, its fermentation into ethanol and the optimal utilization of co-products (protein meal, fibrous residue). The energy to produce and transport forage on the farm was estimated to be only 375 MJ/t dry matter (DM) when liquid manure was used and 1165 MJ/t DM when mineral fertilizer was used. An additional 126 MJ/t DM would be required to transport it to a processing plant. In contrast, whole-plant corn production using mineral fertilizer required about 3211 MJ/t DM, but it had a potential ethanol yield 3.2 times greater per unit area than perennial forage. A forage system with mechanical juice extraction resulted in 8-20% of the original forage dry matter available in a liquid substrate with subsequent protein meal separation and the fermentation of soluble sugars into ethanol. Another forage system with relatively complete conversion of cellulose and hemicellulose into simple sugars by thermal, acidic and enzymatic treatments was estimated to produce 12-28 times more ethanol per unit area than the mechanically extracted juice. Complete conversion of perennial forages would meet the petroleum industry`s needs more consistently than simple extraction of soluble components. (Author)

  14. Evaluation of Perennial Forage Legumes and Herbs in Six Mediterranean Environments Evaluación de Leguminosas y Hierbas Forrajeras Perennes en Seis Medioambientes Mediterráneos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Real

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available There is an absence of drought tolerant herbaceous perennial forage legume and herb options other than lucerne (Medicago sativa L. for environments with Mediterranean-like climates common in extensive areas of Southern Australia, the Mediterranean basin, and Chile. Therefore, a collection of 174 forage perennial legume and herb entries from 103 species and 32 genera was evaluated for adaptation in a diverse range of Mediterranean climatic environments in Southern Australia. The seasonal rainfall distribution varied from moderately to highly winter dominant with long term average annual rainfall ranging from 318 to 655 mm. The entries were rated for productivity and persistence over 3 yr. The 12 entries identified as the most promising for winter, summer, or all-year round production included Bituminaria bituminosa (L. C.H. Stirt. var. albomarginata; Cichorium intybus L.; Cullen australasicum (Schltdl. J.W. Grimes; Dorycnium hirsutum (L. Ser.; Kennedia prostrata R. Br.; Lotononis bainesii Baker, Lotus pedunculatus Cav.; L. corniculatus L.; L. cytisoides L.; Medicago sativa subsp. sativa L.; Medicago sativa subsp. caerulea (Less. ex Ledeb. Schmalh., and M. sativa subsp. falcata (L. Arcang. These entries maintained production and persisted for the period of the evaluation, with the exception of C. intybus and L. corniculatus that declined in persistence over time. The potential role of these species in extensive grazing systems in Mediterranean climatic zones, their attributes and limitations, and current progress in developing them as useful forage plants was discussed.Existe una escasez de leguminosas y hierbas perennes herbáceas además de alfalfa (Medicago sativa L. tolerantes a sequía para ambientes con clima mediterráneo como los que se encuentran en el Sur de Australia, el Mediterráneo y Chile. Por lo tanto, una colección de 174 leguminosas perennes y hierbas correspondientes a 103 especies y 32 géneros fue evaluada por su adaptaci

  15. Genetic Loci Governing Androgenic Capacity in Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel F. Begheyn

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Immature pollen can be induced to switch developmental pathways from gametogenesis to embryogenesis and subsequently regenerate into homozygous, diploid plants. Such androgenic production of doubled haploids is particularly useful for species where inbreeding is hampered by effective self-incompatibility systems. Therefore, increasing the generally low androgenic capacity of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. germplasm would enable the efficient production of homozygous plant material, so that a more effective exploitation of heterosis through hybrid breeding schemes can be realized. Here, we present the results of a genome-wide association study in a heterozygous, multiparental population of perennial ryegrass (n = 391 segregating for androgenic capacity. Genotyping-by-sequencing was used to interrogate gene- dense genomic regions and revealed over 1,100 polymorphic sites. Between one and 10 quantitative trait loci (QTL were identified for anther response, embryo and total plant production, green and albino plant production and regeneration. Most traits were under polygenic control, although a major QTL on linkage group 5 was associated with green plant regeneration. Distinct genetic factors seem to affect green and albino plant recovery. Two intriguing candidate genes, encoding chromatin binding domains of the developmental phase transition regulator, Polycomb Repressive Complex 2, were identified. Our results shed the first light on the molecular mechanisms behind perennial ryegrass microspore embryogenesis and enable marker-assisted introgression of androgenic capacity into recalcitrant germplasm of this forage crop of global significance.

  16. Towards in vitro fertilization, gametosomatic cybridization and DNA transfer in perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maas, van der H.M.

    1994-01-01

    In this thesis, research towards invitro fertilization, gametosomatic cybridization andDNAtransfer in perennial ryegrass ( Loliumperenne L.), the most important forage

  17. Optimal prescribed burn frequency to manage foundation California perennial grass species and enhance native flora

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grasslands can be diverse assemblages of grasses and forbs but not much is known how perennial grass species management affects native plant diversity except for in a few instances. We studied the use of late spring prescribed burns over a span of eleven years on experimental plots in which the pere...

  18. Emergence and seedling growth of five forage legume species at ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jane

    2011-08-17

    Aug 17, 2011 ... A field study compared the seedling emergence and structure of five forage legumes .... mean seed mass (without seed coat) per species was used for W1 ...... Of light and length: regulation of hypocotyl growth in Arabidopsis.

  19. Assessing Water-use Relationships in a Perennial Kernza Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Oliveira, G.; Brunsell, N. A.; Sutherlin, C. E.; Crews, T.; Vico, G.

    2017-12-01

    Perennial grain/forage crops can sustain high yields without replanting for 3-10 years or more, resulting in potentially important environmental benefits. Although previous research has been conducted in perennial food crops, the coupling between these ecosystems and the atmosphere is not well understood. The objective of this study was to evaluate the magnitude and temporal variability of the water-use relationships in a perennial Kernza wheatgrass crop in Salina, north-central region of Kansas (KS), USA. The study period comprised approximately 4.5 years (May 2012-October 2016) of eddy covariance observations collected at the US-KLS AmeriFlux tower. In particular, we examine the water-use efficiency, carbon and water fluxes in relation to the local environmental factors, such as vapor pressure deficit, soil moisture, air temperature, etc. An analysis of the correspondence between accumulated precipitation (PPT) and ET in the perennial crop indicated a most likely low surface runoff and that there were other sources of water for plant intake in addition to the annual PPT, i.e., deep water. In this sense, we highlight that the long roots observed in perennial crops may facilitate the water uptake in the deeper soil layers, providing extra resources for the plant growth especially when the rainfall indices are low. The results obtained in this work are important in order to better understand the hydrologic cycle of perennial agroecosystems as well as to understand the benefits and disadvantages in relation to annual crops particularly under changing climatic conditions.

  20. Temperature Effects on the Seed Germination of Some Perennial and Annual Species of Asteraceae Family

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zarghani Hadi

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Temperature is the most critical factor determining success or failure of plant establishment. Seed germination response of five medicinal species include three seed-propagated perennial species, Cichorium intybus, cynara scolymus and Echinacea purpurea and vegetative-reproduction perennial species, Achillea millefolium and annual species, Matricaria aurea were assessed at constant temperatures. The seeds were exposed to constant temperatures of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40 and 45°C under total darkness. Germination percentage of all the species were significantly affected by various temperatures (p ≤ 0.001. A. millefolium did not germinate at 5-10 and 35-45°C, but showed noticeable germination percentage (73.3-100% at temperatures ranged from 15-30° C. The highest total germination percentage was observed within the range of 15-35 °C for other species. Also, we calculated cardinal temperatures (the minimum, optimum and maximum temperature for seed germination of species. The highest value for minimum temperature was 10.07ºC in A. millefolium followed by C. scolymus and M. aurea (5ºC while the lowest was for E. purpurea and C. intybus (2.68 and 2.90ºC respectively. The lowest value for optimum temperature was detected in A. millefolium (22.72ºC and M. aurea (23.88°C while the maximum values were observed in E. purpurea and C. intybus (30.40ºC and 29.90ºC respectively. Based on results of present study we concluded that species with both vegetative and seed-propagated reproduction forms like A. millefolium had smaller temperature range rather those with just one way of reproduction (seed production.

  1. Perennial pastures for marginal farming country in southern Queensland. 2. Potential new grass cultivar evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard G. Silcock

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Trials in the Condamine-Balonne basin, Australia, compared 11 promising perennial pasture grass accessions (4 Bothriochloa, 2 Cenchrus, 2 Urochloa and 1 each of Digitaria, Eragrostis and Panicum species against the best similar commercial cultivars on the basis of ease of establishment from seed, persistence once established, forage yield and ease of seed production.  Accessions sown at a site were determined by prior experience with them on a range of soils.  High quality seed was relatively easy to produce for both Urochloa species and for Eragrostis curvula CPI 30374 but problematic for the Bothriochloa spp.  Once established, all accessions persisted for 3–5 years and most were well grazed, but adequate establishment was sometimes a problem with Panicum stapfianum and Bothriochloa ewartiana.  The dry matter yield ratings of the non-commercial lines were similar to those of the commercial equivalents of the same species.  While agronomically valuable, none of the promising new grasses was considered worthy of commercialization at this point because their strengths did not warrant the setting up of a seed-production business in competition with current commercial enterprises.  Long-standing cultivars such as Gayndah buffel and Nixon sabi grass continued to exhibit their superior pasture qualities.Keywords: Herbicide tolerance, persistence, forage yield, establishment ease, commercialization, seed production.DOI: 10.17138/TGFT(315-26

  2. Genetic markers for flowering in perennial ryegrass

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paina, Cristiana; Byrne, Stephen; Andersen, Jeppe Reitan

    2011-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is the principal forage grass utilized in Danish agriculture and underpins the beef and dairy sectors. It is characterized as having high digestibility, high nutritional value, and high productivity during vegetative growth. However, at the reproductive growth...... genes will be converted to molecular markers and mapped in an existing mapping population previously characterized for flowering time and vernalization response. References: Amasino, R.M., Michaels S.D. (2010). The Timing of Flowering. Plant Physiology 154: 516–520 Greenup, A., W. Peacock, W.J., Dennis...

  3. Productivity and carbon footprint of perennial grass-forage legume intercropping strategies with high or low nitrogen fertilizer input.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Lachouani, Petra; Knudsen, Marie Trydeman; Ambus, Per; Boelt, Birte; Gislum, René

    2016-01-15

    A three-season field experiment was established and repeated twice with spring barley used as cover crop for different perennial grass-legume intercrops followed by a full year pasture cropping and winter wheat after sward incorporation. Two fertilization regimes were applied with plots fertilized with either a high or a low rate of mineral nitrogen (N) fertilizer. Life cycle assessment (LCA) was used to evaluate the carbon footprint (global warming potential) of the grassland management including measured nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions after sward incorporation. Without applying any mineral N fertilizer, the forage legume pure stand, especially red clover, was able to produce about 15 t above ground dry matter ha(-1) year(-1) saving around 325 kg mineral Nfertilizer ha(-1) compared to the cocksfoot and tall fescue grass treatments. The pure stand ryegrass yielded around 3t DM more than red clover in the high fertilizer treatment. Nitrous oxide emissions were highest in the treatments containing legumes. The LCA showed that the low input N systems had markedly lower carbon footprint values than crops from the high N input system with the pure stand legumes without N fertilization having the lowest carbon footprint. Thus, a reduction in N fertilizer application rates in the low input systems offsets increased N2O emissions after forage legume treatments compared to grass plots due to the N fertilizer production-related emissions. When including the subsequent wheat yield in the total aboveground production across the three-season rotation, the pure stand red clover without N application and pure stand ryegrass treatments with the highest N input equalled. The present study illustrate how leguminous biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) represents an important low impact renewable N source without reducing crop yields and thereby farmers earnings. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Recent Progress in Perennial Buckwheat Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing-Fu Chen

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Grains in the genus Fagopyrum have benefits to human health and are an excellent gluten-free raw material. Of all cereal foods, this genus has the highest total content of amino-acid nutrients necessary for humans; nutrients that are resistant to digestion (protein and starch resulting in their sustained release; higher dietary fiber content than key cereals, and is rich in a special healthy ingredient (flavonoids. Fagopyrum includes 24 species of which five are perennial. Among them, golden buckwheat (F.cymosum complex is the most important perennial buckwheat, which is not only used in Chinese medicine, but also has great potential in healthy food crop. In order to provide some clues for perennial crop studies and their industry development, this paper presents the state of perennial buckwheat research in terms of taxonomy; natural chemical products and pharmacological and health functions; genetics and evolution; breeding; and product development and utilization. The great advances such as successful interspecific crossing and its subsequent new perennial buckwheat varieties will speed up the development of the perennial buckwheat industry.

  5. Three-dimensional foraging habitat use and niche partitioning in two sympatric seabird species, Phalacrocorax auritus and P. penicillatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peck-Richardson, Adam G.; Lyons, Donald E.; Roby, Daniel D.; Cushing, Daniel A.; Lerczak, James A.

    2018-01-01

    Ecological theory predicts that co-existing, morphologically similar species will partition prey resources when faced with resource limitations. We investigated local movements, foraging dive behavior, and foraging habitat selection by breeding adults of 2 closely related cormorant species, double-crested cormorants Phalacrocorax auritus and Brandt’s cormorants P. penicillatus. These species nest sympatrically at East Sand Island in the Columbia River estuary at the border of Oregon and Washington states, USA. Breeding individuals of each species were tracked using GPS tags with integrated temperature and depth data-loggers. The overall foraging areas and core foraging areas (defined as the 95% and 50% kernel density estimates of dive locations, respectively) of double-crested cormorants were much larger and covered a broader range of riverine, mixed-estuarine, and nearshore marine habitats. Brandt’s cormorant foraging areas were less expansive, were exclusively marine, and mostly overlapped with double-crested cormorant foraging areas. Within these areas of overlap, Brandt’s cormorants tended to dive deeper (median depth = 6.48 m) than double-crested cormorants (median depth = 2.67 m), and selected dive locations where the water was deeper. Brandt’s cormorants also utilized a deeper, more benthic portion of the water column than did double-crested cormorants. Nevertheless, the substantial overlap in foraging habitat between the 2 cormorant species in the Columbia River estuary, particularly for Brandt’s cormorants, suggests that superabundant prey resources allow these 2 large and productive cormorant colonies to coexist on a single island near the mouth of the Columbia River.

  6. Importance and condition of forage crops seed production in agriculture of the Republic of Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Đokić Dragoslav

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available For contemporary and economical livestock production, especially cattle and sheep raising, it is necessary to achieve high production of livestock feed while reducing production costs. Improving the production of perennial grasses and legumes creates a good basis for the development of livestock production in different agro-ecological conditions of Serbia. It also establishes a link between farming and animal husbandry, which is of particular importance for the preservation and higher fertility of arable land and the protection of agro-ecosystems. An important factor for the cheaper production of livestock feed is the possibility to provide sufficient quantities of quality seeds at affordable prices. Production of quality seeds of local varieties of perennial legumes is possible to obtain sufficient amounts of good quality forage. Current situation in forage crop seed production of the Republic of Serbia is unsatisfactory because the seed of perennial grasses are mostly imported. Domestic production of alfalfa, red clover and birdsfoot trefoil met domestic needs only in some years. Seed of imported varieties are often not satisfactory because those varieties are not adapted to our local agro-ecological conditions. The present results provide the basis and direction for further researches that may provide solutions to increase seed yields and which will be widely accepted in practice, which will make the production more cost-effective. Institute for forage crops Kruševac is making a significant contribution to the development of technology of seed productions, especially alfalfa, red clover and perennial grasses. Therefore the role of the Institute is very important and necessary link between production, processing and trading seeds of perennial legumes and grasses in Serbia.

  7. Foragers of sympatric Asian honey bee species intercept competitor signals by avoiding benzyl acetate from Apis cerana alarm pheromone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Ping; Cheng, Yanan; Qu, Yufeng; Zhang, Hongxia; Li, Jianjun; Bell, Heather; Tan, Ken; Nieh, James

    2017-07-27

    While foraging, animals can form inter- and intraspecific social signalling networks to avoid similar predators. We report here that foragers of different native Asian honey bee species can detect and use a specialized alarm pheromone component, benzyl acetate (BA), to avoid danger. We analysed the volatile alarm pheromone produced by attacked workers of the most abundant native Asian honey bee, Apis cerana and tested the responses of other bee species to these alarm signals. As compared to nest guards, A. cerana foragers produced 3.38 fold higher levels of BA. In foragers, BA and (E)-dec-2-en-1-yl acetate (DA) generated the strongest antennal electrophysiological responses. BA was also the only compound that alerted flying foragers and inhibited A. cerana foraging. BA thereby decreased A. cerana foraging for risky sites. Interestingly, although BA occurs only in trace amounts and is nearly absent in sympatric honeybee species (respectively only 0.07% and 0.44% as much in A. dorsata and A. florea), these floral generalists detected and avoided BA as strongly as they did to their own alarm pheromone on natural inflorescences. These results demonstrate that competing pollinators can take advantage of alarm signal information provided by other species.

  8. Testing water-soluble carbohydrate QTL effects in perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) by marker selection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Turner, L.B.; Farrell, M.; Humphreys, M.O.; Dolstra, O.

    2010-01-01

    Water-soluble carbohydrates (WSC) are an important factor determining the nutritional value of grass forage and development of genetic markers for selection of WSC traits in perennial ryegrass would benefit future breeding programmes. Quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for WSC have been published for an

  9. Theoretical implications for the estimation of dinitrogen fixation by large perennial plant species using isotope dilution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dwight D. Baker; Maurice Fried; John A. Parrotta

    1995-01-01

    Estimation of symbiotic N2 fixation associated with large perennial plant species, especially trees, poses special problems because the process must be followed over a potentially long period of time to integrate the total amount of fixation. Estimations using isotope dilution methodology have begun to be used for trees in field studies. Because...

  10. Bud Dormancy in Perennial Fruit Tree Species: A Pivotal Role for Oxidative Cues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rémi Beauvieux

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available For perennial plants, bud dormancy is a crucial step as its progression over winter determines the quality of bud break, flowering, and fruiting. In the past decades, many studies, based on metabolic, physiological, subcellular, genetic, and genomic analyses, have unraveled mechanisms underlying bud dormancy progression. Overall, all the pathways identified are interconnected in a very complex manner. Here, we review early and recent findings on the dormancy processes in buds of temperate fruit trees species including hormonal signaling, the role of plasma membrane, carbohydrate metabolism, mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress, with an effort to link them together and emphasize the central role of reactive oxygen species accumulation in the control of dormancy progression.

  11. Dissecting the genetics of rhizomatousness: Towards sustainable food, forage, and bioenergy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhizomatousness is a key trait influencing both the perenniality and biomass partitioning of plants. Increased understanding of the genetic control of rhizome growth offers potential towards the creation of more sustainable grain, forage, and bioenergy cropping systems. It is also applicable to th...

  12. Variations in protein and fat contents and their fractions in milk from two species fed different forages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kholif, S M; El-Shewy, A A; Morsy, T A; Abd El-Rahman, H H

    2015-02-01

    This study aimed at determining the variations in milk constituents which could be varied by feed and animal species. To achieve this goal, two groups of homoparity Baladi cows and Egyptian buffaloes (n = 20 per species) were used. Each group was divided into two subgroups (n = 10): subgroup I received legume forage (Egyptian clover) and subgroup II received grass forage (sorghum forage). All experimental animals were fed the diet consisting of concentrate, forage and rice straw as 50, 25 and 25% of dry matter intake respectively. Milk samples were taken for analysis. The trial lasted until the 3rd month of parturition. The main results indicated that lactating cattle fed legume forage significantly (p ≤ 0.01) had more content of casein nitrogen (513 mg/100 ml milk), lower content of glutamic acid (23.56 g/100 g milk protein) and more content of cis-9, trans-11 18:2 conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) (0.77 g/100 g milk fat) compared with 433, 26.67 and 0.53, respectively, for cattle fed grass forage. With regard to the species effect, results showed that buffalo milk appeared to contain significantly higher (p ≤ 0.01) contents of casein nitrogen, phenylalanine, glutamic and arachidonic acid compared with cow's milk. However, the latter was significantly (p ≤ 0.01) more in the cis-9, trans-11CLA (0.59 g/100 g milk fat) than that in buffalo milk (0.47 g/100 g milk fat). The results revealed that not only forage type played a critical role in determining the variations of milk nitrogen distribution, milk amino acids and fatty acids but also animal species had a significant effect on these parameters. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition © 2014 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  13. Forage yield and nutritive value of Elephant grass, Italian ryegrass and spontaneous growing species mixed with forage peanut or red clover

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle Schalemberg Diehl

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this research was to evaluate of three grazing systems (GS with elephant grass (EG, Italian ryegrass (IR + spontaneous growing species (SGS; EG + IR + SGS + forage peanut (FP; and EG + IR + SGS + red clover (RC, during the winter and summer periods in rotational grazing with dairy cattle. Experimental design was completely randomized with three treatments, two replicates with repeated measures. Lactating Holstein cows receiving 1% BW-daily feed supplement with concentrate were used in the evaluation. Eight grazing cycles were performed during the experimental period. The values of pre forage mass and stocking rate were 2.52, 2.60 and 2.99 t ha-1 and 2.64, 2.77 and 3.14 animal unit ha-1, respectively for GS. Samples of forage were collected by hand-plucking technique to analyze the crude protein (CP, neutral detergent fiber (NDF, in situ dry matter digestibility (ISDMD, in situ organic matter digestibility (ISOMD of forage present between rows of elephant grass, in the rows of elephant grass and the legumes. Higher value of CP, ISOMD and lower of NDF were observed for the grazing systems mixed with legumes forage.

  14. Analysis of the potentiality haying of native forage species in semiarid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enoque de Sousa Leão

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the potential hay production from Spiny Amaranth (Amaranthus spinosus, Hairy Woodrose (Merremia aegyptia, Malva (Sida galheirensis, Mucuna (Mucuna pruriens and Ervanço (Froelichia humboldtiana, native forage species of the semiarid region of Brazil by observing morphological components of the plant, such as the dehydration curve, crude protein loss (CPL curve, chemical composition of plant and hay and hay degradability in situ. There were differences (P < 0.05 among species on leaf, stem and inflorescence quantification with Ervanço, Hairy Woodrose, and Mucuna having a greater number of leaves. There was a linearly increasing response for the dehydration curve of the five forage plants species. Mucuna forage had the greatest hay point at 800 g kg-1 dried matter (DM after 11.8 hours and Woodrose had a lower dehydration efficiency, which required 25 hours of sun exposure. There was no difference in CPL. Mucuna had the lowest crude protein (CP, neutral detergent fiber (NDF and acid detergent fiber (ADF content, 8.4, 67.7 and 73.8 g kg DM-1 in hay in relation to the plant, respectively. Ervanço, Spiny Amaranth, Hairy Woodrose and Malva hay had more of soluble fraction “a” of DM of 31.0, 26.2, 22.1 and 9.7 g kg-1 DM than Mucuna, respectively. Spiny Amaranth and Malva hay had values of 335.4 and 193.2 g kg-1 DM of fraction “b” more than Ervanço hay, respectively. For fraction “a’’ of CP, Spiny Amaranth and Hairy Woodrose hay obtained 312.6 and 227.4 g kg-1 CP more than that observed for Malva, respectively. Mucuna had better hay potential among the forage studied in the semiarid region of Brazil.

  15. Complementarity in nutrient foraging strategies of absorptive fine roots and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi across 14 coexisting subtropical tree species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bitao; Li, Hongbo; Zhu, Biao; Koide, Roger T; Eissenstat, David M; Guo, Dali

    2015-10-01

    In most cases, both roots and mycorrhizal fungi are needed for plant nutrient foraging. Frequently, the colonization of roots by arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi seems to be greater in species with thick and sparsely branched roots than in species with thin and densely branched roots. Yet, whether a complementarity exists between roots and mycorrhizal fungi across these two types of root system remains unclear. We measured traits related to nutrient foraging (root morphology, architecture and proliferation, AM colonization and extramatrical hyphal length) across 14 coexisting AM subtropical tree species following root pruning and nutrient addition treatments. After root pruning, species with thinner roots showed more root growth, but lower mycorrhizal colonization, than species with thicker roots. Under multi-nutrient (NPK) addition, root growth increased, but mycorrhizal colonization decreased significantly, whereas no significant changes were found under nitrogen or phosphate additions. Moreover, root length proliferation was mainly achieved by altering root architecture, but not root morphology. Thin-root species seem to forage nutrients mainly via roots, whereas thick-root species rely more on mycorrhizal fungi. In addition, the reliance on mycorrhizal fungi was reduced by nutrient additions across all species. These findings highlight complementary strategies for nutrient foraging across coexisting species with contrasting root traits. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  16. Important Considerations When Choosing Forage Grasses - Research Developments on Quality and Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seasonal changes in forage productivity and nutritive value will influence pasture management and ration balancing decisions by the producer. We determined seasonal yield and quality changes in the leaf and stem fraction of 10 temperate perennial grasses at two Wisconsin locations. After reaching ...

  17. Effects of fire and nitrogen addition on forage quality of Aristida purpurea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purple threeawn (Aristida purpurea Nutt.) is a native perennial bunchgrass with limited forage value that dominates sites with disturbed soils and persists with continued severe grazing. Fire and nitrogen addition have been used to reduce threeawn and may increase grazing utilization of threeawn by...

  18. Group foraging increases foraging efficiency in a piscivorous diver, the African penguin

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGeorge, Cuan; Ginsberg, Samuel; Pichegru, Lorien; Pistorius, Pierre A.

    2017-01-01

    Marine piscivores have evolved a variety of morphological and behavioural adaptations, including group foraging, to optimize foraging efficiency when targeting shoaling fish. For penguins that are known to associate at sea and feed on these prey resources, there is nonetheless a lack of empirical evidence to support improved foraging efficiency when foraging with conspecifics. We examined the hunting strategies and foraging performance of breeding African penguins equipped with animal-borne video recorders. Individuals pursued both solitary as well as schooling pelagic fish, and demonstrated independent as well as group foraging behaviour. The most profitable foraging involved herding of fish schools upwards during the ascent phase of a dive where most catches constituted depolarized fish. Catch-per-unit-effort was significantly improved when targeting fish schools as opposed to single fish, especially when foraging in groups. In contrast to more generalist penguin species, African penguins appear to have evolved specialist hunting strategies closely linked to their primary reliance on schooling pelagic fish. The specialist nature of the observed hunting strategies further limits the survival potential of this species if Allee effects reduce group size-related foraging efficiency. This is likely to be exacerbated by diminishing fish stocks due to resource competition and environmental change. PMID:28989785

  19. Diagnostics, taxonomy, nomenclature and distribution of perennial Sesuvium (Aizoaceae) in Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukhorukov, Alexander P.; Nilova, Maya V.; Erst, Andrey S.; Kushunina, Maria; Baider, Cláudia; Verloove, Filip; Salas-Pascual, Marcos; Belyaeva, Irina V.; Krinitsina, Anastasiya A.; Bruyns, Peter V.; Klak, Cornelia

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The taxonomy of perennial Sesuvium species in Africa has been poorly investigated until now. Previously five perennial species of Sesuvium were recognised in Africa (S. congense, S. crithmoides, S. mesembryanthemoides, S. portulacastrum, and S. sesuvioides). Based on the differing number of stamens, S. ayresii is accepted here as being distinct from S. portulacastrum. Field observations in Angola also led the authors to conclude that S. crystallinum and S. mesembryanthemoides are conspecific with S. crithmoides. A new subspecies, Sesuvium portulacastrum subsp. persoonii, is described from West Africa (Cape Verde, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritania, Senegal). The molecular phylogeny indicates the position of S. portulacastrum subsp. persoonii within the “American lineage” as a part of the Sesuvium portulacastrum complex which needs further studies. A diagnostic key and taxonomic notes are provided for the six perennial species of Sesuvium found in Africa and recognised by the authors (S. ayresii, S. congense, S. crithmoides, S. portulacastrum subsp. portulacastrum, S. portulacastrum subsp. persoonii, S. verrucosum and the facultatively short-lived S. sesuvioides). The distribution of S. crithmoides, previously considered to be endemic to Angola, is now confirmed for the seashores of Republic of Congo and DR Congo. The American species S. verrucosum is reported for the first time for Africa (the Macaronesian islands: Cape Verde and the Canaries). It is locally naturalised in Gran Canaria, being a potentially invasive species. These findings as well as new records of S. verrucosum from Asia and the Pacific Islands confirm its proneness to transcontinental introduction. Lectotypes of S. brevifolium, S. crithmoides, S. crystallinum and S. mesembryanthemoides are selected. The seed micromorphology and anatomy of the perennial African species is studied. Compared to the seeds of some annual African Sesuvium investigated earlier, those of perennial species are

  20. Association of Candidate Genes With Submergence Response in Perennial Ryegrass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xicheng Wang

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Perennial ryegrass is a popular cool-season grass species due to its high quality for forage and turf. The objective of this study was to identify associations of candidate genes with growth and physiological traits to submergence stress and recovery after de-submergence in a global collection of 94 perennial ryegrass accessions. Accessions varied largely in leaf color, plant height (HT, leaf fresh weight (LFW, leaf dry weight (LDW, and chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm at 7 days of submergence and in HT, LFW and LDW at 7 days of recovery in two experiments. Among 26 candidate genes tested by various models, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs in 10 genes showed significant associations with traits including 16 associations for control, 10 for submergence, and 8 for recovery. Under submergence, Lp1-SST encoding sucrose:sucrose 1-fructosyltransferase and LpGA20ox encoding gibberellin 20-oxidase were associated with LFW and LDW, and LpACO1 encoding 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid oxidase was associated with LFW. Associations between Lp1-SST and HT, Lp6G-FFT encoding fructan:fructan 6G-fructosyltransferase and Fv/Fm, LpCAT encoding catalase and HT were also detected under submergence stress. Upon de-submergence, Lp1-SST, Lp6G-FFT, and LpPIP1 encoding plasma membrane intrinsic protein type 1 were associated with LFW or LDW, while LpCBF1b encoding C-repeat binding factor were associated with HT. Nine significant SNPs in Lp1-SST, Lp6G-FFT, LpCAT, and LpACO1 resulted in amino acid changes with five substitutions found in Lp1-SST under submergence or recovery. The results indicated that allelic diversity in genes involved in carbohydrate and antioxidant metabolism, ethylene and gibberellin biosynthesis, and transcript factor could contribute to growth variations in perennial ryegrass under submergence stress and recovery after de-submergence.

  1. Apparent foraging success reflects habitat quality in an irruptive species, the Black-backed Woodpecker

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher T. Rota; Mark A. Rumble; Chad P. Lehman; Dylan C. Kesler; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2015-01-01

    Dramatic fluctuations in food resources are a key feature of many habitats, and many species have evolved a movement strategy to exploit food resources that are unpredictable in space and time. The availability of food resources may be a particularly strong determinant of habitat quality for irruptive bird species. We studied the apparent foraging success of Black-...

  2. N2-fixation and residual N effect of four legume species and four companion grass species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Jim; Søegaard, Karen; Pirhofer-Walzl, Karin

    2012-01-01

    and climatic conditions. We conducted a field experiment on a sandy soil at two nitrogen levels with seven two-species forage mixtures: alfalfa, bird's-foot trefoil, red clover, or white clover in mixture with perennial ryegrass, and white clover in mixture with meadow fescue, timothy, or hybrid ryegrass. We...... found high N2-fixation of more than 300 kg N ha-1 from both red clover and alfalfa even when the two mixtures received 300 kg total-N ha-1 in cattle slurry. The addition of cattle slurry N fertilizer lowered N2-fixation for white clover and red clover as expected, but for bird's-foot trefoil and alfalfa...... no changes in the proportion of N derived from N2-fixation was observed. We conclude that the competition for available soil N from perennial ryegrass in mixture was an important factor for the proportion of N in alfalfa, white clover, and bird's-foot trefoil obtained from N2-fixation. White clover had...

  3. The Relationships between Morphological Characteristics and Foraging Behavior in Four Selected Species of Shorebirds and Water Birds Utilizing Tropical Mudflats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nor Atiqah Norazlimi

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A study was conducted to investigate the relationship between the physical morphology of shorebirds and water birds (i.e., Lesser adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus, Common redshank (Tringa totanus, Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus, and Little heron (Butorides striata and their foraging behavior in the mudflats area of Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia, from August 2013 to July 2014 by using direct observation techniques (using binoculars and a video recorder. The actively foraging bird species were watched, and their foraging activities were recorded for at least 30 seconds for up to a maximum of five minutes. A Spearman Rank Correlation highlighted a significant relationship between bill size and foraging time (R=0.443, p<0.05, bill size and prey size (R=-0.052, p<0.05, bill size and probing depth (R=0.42, p=0.003, and leg length and water/mud depth (R=0.706, p<0.005. A Kruskal-Wallis Analysis showed a significant difference between average estimates of real probing depth of the birds (mm and species (H=15.96, p=0.0012. Three foraging techniques were recorded: pause-travel, visual-feeding, and tactile-hunting. Thus, morphological characteristics of bird do influence their foraging behavior and strategies used when foraging.

  4. Distribution of photosynthetically fixed 14C in perennial plant species of the northern Mojave Desert

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wallace, A.; Cha, J.W.; Romney, E.M.

    1980-01-01

    The distribution of photosynthate among plant parts subsequent to its production is needed to fully understand behavior of vegetation in any ecosystem. The present study, undertaken primarily to obtain information on transport of assimilates into roots of desert vegetation, was conducted in the northern Mojave Desert, where the mean annual rainfall is about 10 cm. Shoots of Ambrosia dumosa (A. Gray) Payne plants were exposed to 14 CO 2 in 1971, and the distribution of 14 C in roots, stems, and leaves was subsequently measured at 1 week, 2 months, and 5 months. Only about 12 percent of the 14 C photosynthate was stored in the root. Much of that stored in stems was available for new leaf growth. Photosynthate was labeled with 14 C for 24 plants representing eight species in 1972. Results showed that after 127 days the mean percentage of 14 C in roots as compared with the estimate of that originally fixed was 11.8; the percentage in stems was 43.8. To check the validity of the 14 C data, root growth of eight perennial desert plants grown in the glasshouse was followed as plants increased in size. The mean percent of the whole plant that was root for eight species was 17.7 percent. The mean proportion of the increase in plant weights that went below ground for the eight species was 19.5 percent. This value is higher than the fraction of 14 C found below ground, and therefore the 14 C technique underestimates the movement of C to roots. Results of an experiment designed to test the value of the 14 C-pulse technique for determining current root growth for some perennial species from the desert indicated that the transition part of roots where root growth continued after exposure to 14 C was highly labeled. Old growth contained less 14 C than new growth

  5. Adaptive management of perennial pepperweed for endangered specias and tidal marsh recovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perennial pepperweed has invaded a wide range of habitat types in the far west. In the San Francisco Estuary, dense infestations have impacted sensitive tidal wetlands and compromised endangered species recovery efforts. An adaptive management effort to reduce perennial pepperweed was initiated by...

  6. CHEMICAL COMPOSITION OF CAATINGA POTENTIAL FORAGES SPECIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dynara Layza de Souza da Silva

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Chemical composition of some potential forages species, natives from Caatinga region, were evaluated. Samples of Macroptilium heterophyllum, Stylosanthes humilis, Rhynchosia mínima, Desmodium tortuosum Sw. Dc, Merremia aegyptia, Mimosa tenuiflora Wild, Bauhinia cheilantha and as well Macroptilium lathyroides, Caesalpinia pyramidalis and Mimosa tenuiflora hays were collected in Rio Grande do Norte Stated, during 2011 rainy season. The analyses: dry matter (DM, crude protein (CP mineral matter (MM ether extract  (EE neutral detergent fiber (NDF, acid detergent fiber (ADF, lignin (LIG, insoluble neutral detergent nitrogen, (INDN insoluble acid detergent nitrogen, (ADIN, total phenol (TF and total tannin (TT were done at Embrapa Caprinos e Ovinos in Ceará State. Plants analyzed, as expected, for tropical species, exhibited high level of cell wall constituents, high lignifications rate and revealed substantial presence of anti nutritional compounds. However, regardless of this data, the main problem, for grazing animals, is due to its xerophytes characteristics. Most of the shrubs and trees are deciduous, losing its leaves during the dry season. In addition, herbaceous presents a very rapid lifetime cycle, germinating and senescing during the brief wet season.

  7. Chemical composition and ruminal degradation kinetics of crude protein and amino acids, and intestinal digestibility of amino acids from tropical forages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidia Ferreira Miranda

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this research was to determine the chemical composition and ruminal degradation of the crude protein (CP, total and individual amino acids of leaves from tropical forages: perennial soybean (Neonotonia wightii, cassava (Manihot esculenta, leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala and ramie (Boehmeria nivea, and to estimate the intestinal digestibility of the rumen undegradable protein (RUDP and individual amino acids of leaves from the tropical forages above cited, but including pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan. Three nonlactating Holstein cows were used to determine the in situ ruminal degradability of protein and amino acids from leaves (6, 18 and 48 hours of ruminal incubation. For determination of the intestinal digestibility of RUDP, the residue from ruminal incubation of the materials was used for 18 hours. A larger concentration of total amino acids for ramie and smaller for perennial soybean were observed; however, they were very similar in leucaena and cassava. Leucine was the essential amino acid of greater concentration, with the exception of cassava, which exhibited a leucine concentration 40.45% smaller. Ramie showed 14.35 and 22.31% more lysine and methionine, respectively. The intestinal digestibility of RUDP varied from 23.56; 47.87; 23.48; 25.69 and 10.86% for leucaena, perennial soybean, cassava, ramie and pigeon pea, respectively. The individual amino acids of tropical forage disappeared in different extensions in the rumen. For the correct evaluation of those forages, one should consider their composition of amino acids, degradations and intestinal digestibility, once the amino acid composition of the forage does not reflect the amino acid profiles that arrived in the small intestine. Differences between the degradation curves of CP and amino acids indicate that degradation of amino acids cannot be estimated through the degradation curve of CP, and that amino acids are not degraded in a similar degradation profile.

  8. Agronomic and forage characteristics of Guazuma ulmifolia Lam.

    OpenAIRE

    Manríquez-Mendoza, Leonor Yalid; López-Ortíz, Silvia; Pérez-Hernández, Ponciano; Ortega- Jiménez, Eusebio; López-Tecpoyotl, Zenón Gerardo; Villarruel-Fuentes, Manuel

    2011-01-01

    Native trees are an important source of forage for livestock, particularly in regions having prolonged dry periods. Some tree species have fast growth rates, good nutritional quality, and the ability to produce forage during dry periods when the need for forage is greater. Guazuma ulmifolia Lam. is a tree native to tropical America that has a high forage potential. This species is mentioned in a number of studies assessing the forage potential of trees in a diverse array of environments and v...

  9. forage systems mixed with forage legumes grazed by lactating cows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clair Jorge Olivo

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Current research evaluates productivity, stocking and nutritional rates of three forage systems with Elephant Grass (EG + Italian Ryegrass (IR + Spontaneous Growth Species (SGS, without forage legumes; EG + IR + SGS + Forage Peanut (FP, mixed with FP; and EG + IR + SGS + Red Clover (RC, mixed with RC, in rotational grazing method by lactating cows. IR developed between rows of EG. FP was maintained, whilst RC was sow to respective forage systems. The experimental design was completely randomized, with three treatments and two replication, subdivided into parcels over time. Mean rate for forage yield and average stocking rate were 10.6, 11.6 and 14.4 t ha-1; 3.0, 2.8 and 3.1 animal unit ha-1 day-1, for the respective systems. Levels of crude protein and total digestible nutrients were 17.8, 18.7 and 17.5%; 66.5, 66.8 and 64.8%, for the respective forage systems. The presence of RC results in better and higher forage yield in the mixture, whilst FP results in greater control of SGS. The inclusion of forage legumes in pasture systems provides better nutritional rates.

  10. Genetic Analysis of Seed Yield Components and its Association with Forage Production in Wild and Cultivated Species of Sainfoin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Najafipoor

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about genetic variation of seed related traits and their association with forage characters in sainfoin. In order to investigate the variation and relationship among seed yield and its components, 93 genotypes from 21 wild and cultivated species of genus Onobrychis were evaluated using a randomized complete block design with four replications at Isfahan University of Technology Research Farm, Isfahan, Iran. Analysis of variance showed that there was significant difference among genotypes, indicating existence of considerable genetic variation in this germplasm. Panicle fertility and panicle length had the most variation in cultivated and the wild genotypes, respectively. Results of correlation analysis showed that seed yield was positively correlated with number of stems per plant and number of seeds per panicle and negatively correlated with panicle length and days to 50% flowering. Seed yield had positive correlation with forage yield in wild species while this correlation was not significant in cultivated one. Cluster analysis classified the genotypes into three groups which separate wild and cultivated species. Based on principal component analysis the first component was related to seed yield and the second one was related to components of forage yield which can be used for selection of high forage and seed yielding genotypes.

  11. Perennial ryegrass for dairy cows: effects of cultivar on herbage intake during grazing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, H.J.

    2005-01-01

    Keywords:Perennial ryegrass, Lolium perenne , sward morphology, sward cutting, n-alkanes, herbage intake, selection, preference.Perennial ryegrass ( Lolium perenne L.) is the most important species for feeding dairy cows. The majority of the farmers in the Netherlands graze their

  12. Movement patterns for a critically endangered species, the leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea), linked to foraging success and population status.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, Helen; Fossette, Sabrina; Bograd, Steven J; Shillinger, George L; Swithenbank, Alan M; Georges, Jean-Yves; Gaspar, Philippe; Strömberg, K H Patrik; Paladino, Frank V; Spotila, James R; Block, Barbara A; Hays, Graeme C

    2012-01-01

    Foraging success for pelagic vertebrates may be revealed by horizontal and vertical movement patterns. We show markedly different patterns for leatherback turtles in the North Atlantic versus Eastern Pacific, which feed on gelatinous zooplankton that are only occasionally found in high densities. In the Atlantic, travel speed was characterized by two modes, indicative of high foraging success at low speeds (turtles. The most parsimonious explanation for these findings is that Eastern Pacific turtles rarely achieve high foraging success. This is the first support for foraging behaviour differences between populations of this critically endangered species and suggests that longer periods searching for prey may be hindering population recovery in the Pacific while aiding population maintenance in the Atlantic.

  13. Forage grasses with lower uptake of caesium and strontium could provide ‘safer’ crops for radiologically contaminated areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beresford, Nicholas A.; Crout, Neil M. J.; Lovatt, J. Alan; Thomson, Russell; Broadley, Martin R.

    2017-01-01

    Substitution of a species or cultivar with higher uptake of an element by one with lower uptake has been proposed as a remediation strategy following accidental releases of radioactivity. However, despite the importance of pasture systems for radiological dose, species/cultivar substitution has not been thoroughly investigated for forage grasses. 397 cultivars from four forage grass species; hybrid ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. x Lolium multiflorum Lam.), perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.), Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam.) and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Shreb.); were sampled from 19 field-based breeding experiments in Aberystwyth and Edinburgh (UK) in spring 2013 and analysed for caesium (Cs) and strontium (Sr) concentrations. In order to calculate concentration ratios (CRs; the concentration of an element in a plant in relation to the concentration in the soil), soils from the experiments were also analysed to calculate extractable concentrations of Cs and Sr. To test if cultivars have consistently low Cs and Sr concentration ratios, 17 hybrid ryegrass cultivars were sampled from both sites again in summer 2013 and spring and summer 2014. Tall fescue cultivars had lower Cs and Sr CRs than the other species. Three of the selected 17 hybrid ryegrass cultivars had consistently low Cs CRs, two had consistently low Sr CRs and one had consistently low Cs and Sr CRs. Cultivar substitution could reduce Cs CRs by up to 14-fold and Sr CRs by 4-fold in hybrid ryegrass. The identification of species and cultivars with consistently low CRs suggests that species or cultivar substitution could be an effective remediation strategy for contaminated areas. PMID:28459808

  14. Foraging niche segregation in Malaysian babblers (Family: Timaliidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Saiful Mansor

    Full Text Available Tropical rainforests are considered as hotspots for bird diversity, yet little is known about the system that upholds the coexistence of species. Differences in body size that are associated with foraging strategies and spatial distribution are believed to promote the coexistence of closely related species by reducing competition. However, the fact that many babbler species do not differ significantly in their morphology has challenged this view. We studied the foraging ecology of nine sympatric babbler species (i.e., Pellorneum capistratum, P. bicolor, P. malaccense, Malacopteron cinereum, M. magnum, Stachyris nigriceps, S. nigricollis, S. maculata, and Cyanoderma erythropterum in the Krau Wildlife Reserve in Peninsular Malaysia. We investigated; i how these babblers forage in the wild and use vegetation to obtain food, and ii how these trophically similar species differ in spatial distribution and foraging tactics. Results indicated that most babblers foraged predominantly on aerial leaf litter and used gleaning manoeuvre in intermediate-density foliage but exhibited wide ranges of vertical strata usage, thus reducing interspecific competition. The principal component analysis indicated that two components, i.e., foraging height and substrate are important as mechanisms to allow the coexistence of sympatric babblers. The present findings revealed that these bird species have unique foraging niches that are distinct from each other, and this may apply to other insectivorous birds inhabiting tropical forests. This suggests that niche separation does occur among coexisting birds, thus following Gause' law of competitive exclusion, which states two species occupying the same niche will not stably coexist.

  15. Foraging niche segregation in Malaysian babblers (Family: Timaliidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Ramli, Rosli

    2017-01-01

    Tropical rainforests are considered as hotspots for bird diversity, yet little is known about the system that upholds the coexistence of species. Differences in body size that are associated with foraging strategies and spatial distribution are believed to promote the coexistence of closely related species by reducing competition. However, the fact that many babbler species do not differ significantly in their morphology has challenged this view. We studied the foraging ecology of nine sympatric babbler species (i.e., Pellorneum capistratum, P. bicolor, P. malaccense, Malacopteron cinereum, M. magnum, Stachyris nigriceps, S. nigricollis, S. maculata, and Cyanoderma erythropterum) in the Krau Wildlife Reserve in Peninsular Malaysia. We investigated; i) how these babblers forage in the wild and use vegetation to obtain food, and ii) how these trophically similar species differ in spatial distribution and foraging tactics. Results indicated that most babblers foraged predominantly on aerial leaf litter and used gleaning manoeuvre in intermediate-density foliage but exhibited wide ranges of vertical strata usage, thus reducing interspecific competition. The principal component analysis indicated that two components, i.e., foraging height and substrate are important as mechanisms to allow the coexistence of sympatric babblers. The present findings revealed that these bird species have unique foraging niches that are distinct from each other, and this may apply to other insectivorous birds inhabiting tropical forests. This suggests that niche separation does occur among coexisting birds, thus following Gause' law of competitive exclusion, which states two species occupying the same niche will not stably coexist.

  16. Foraging niche segregation in Malaysian babblers (Family: Timaliidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Ramli, Rosli

    2017-01-01

    Tropical rainforests are considered as hotspots for bird diversity, yet little is known about the system that upholds the coexistence of species. Differences in body size that are associated with foraging strategies and spatial distribution are believed to promote the coexistence of closely related species by reducing competition. However, the fact that many babbler species do not differ significantly in their morphology has challenged this view. We studied the foraging ecology of nine sympatric babbler species (i.e., Pellorneum capistratum, P. bicolor, P. malaccense, Malacopteron cinereum, M. magnum, Stachyris nigriceps, S. nigricollis, S. maculata, and Cyanoderma erythropterum) in the Krau Wildlife Reserve in Peninsular Malaysia. We investigated; i) how these babblers forage in the wild and use vegetation to obtain food, and ii) how these trophically similar species differ in spatial distribution and foraging tactics. Results indicated that most babblers foraged predominantly on aerial leaf litter and used gleaning manoeuvre in intermediate-density foliage but exhibited wide ranges of vertical strata usage, thus reducing interspecific competition. The principal component analysis indicated that two components, i.e., foraging height and substrate are important as mechanisms to allow the coexistence of sympatric babblers. The present findings revealed that these bird species have unique foraging niches that are distinct from each other, and this may apply to other insectivorous birds inhabiting tropical forests. This suggests that niche separation does occur among coexisting birds, thus following Gause’ law of competitive exclusion, which states two species occupying the same niche will not stably coexist. PMID:28253284

  17. SEASONALITY OF ANNUAL PLANT ESTABLISHMENT INFLUENCES THE INTERACTIONBETWEEN THE NON-NATIVE ANNUAL GRASS BROMUS MADRITENSIS SSP. RUBENS AND MOJAVE DESERT PERENNIALS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    L A. DEFALCO; G. C. FERNANDEZ; R. S. NOWAK

    2004-01-01

    Competition between native and non-native species can change the composition and structure of plant communities, but in deserts the timing of non-native plant establishment can modulate their impacts to native species. In a field experiment, we varied densities of the non-native annual grass Bromus madritensis ssp. rubens around individuals of three native perennials--Larrea iridentata, Achnatherum hymenoides, and Pleuraphis rigida--in either winter or spring. Additional plots were prepared for the Same perennial species and seasons, but with a mixture of native annual species. Relative growth rates of perennial shoots (RGRs) declined with increasing Bromus biomass when Bromus that was established in winter had 2-3 mo of growth and high water use before perennial growth began. However, this high water use did not significantly reduce water potentials for the perennials, suggesting Bromus that established earlier depleted other soil resources, such as N, otherwise used by perennial plants. Spring-established Bromus had low biomass even at higher densities and did not effectively reduce RGRs, resulting in an overall lower impact to perennials than when Bromus was established in winter. Similarly, growth and reproduction of perennials with mixed annuals as neighbors did not differ from those with Bromus neighbors of equivalent biomass, but densities of these annuals did not support the high biomass necessary to reduce perennial growth. Thus, impacts of native Mojave Desert annuals to perennials are expected to be lower than those of Bromus because seed dormancy and narrow requirements for seedling survivorship produce densities and biomass lower than those achieved by Bromus. In comparing the effects of Bromus among perennial species, the impact of increased Bromus biomass on RGR was lower for Larrea than for the two perennial grasses, probably because Lurrea maintains low growth rates throughout the year, even after Bromus has completed its life cycle. This contrasts

  18. α-Tocopherol and β-carotene contents of forage species in four-cut system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindquist, H.; Nadeau, A.; Jensen, Søren Krogh

    2014-01-01

    α-Tocopherol and β-carotene concentrations were measured in herbage of birdsfoot trefoil (Bft), red clover (Rc), white clover (Wc), timothy (Ti) and perennial ryegrass (Pr) grown in four mixtures (Bft+Ti, Rc+Ti, Rc+Pr and Wc+Pr) in a small-plot field experiment at Foulum, Denmark, over 2 years. P......-carotene concentrations were 54 and 62 mg kg−1 DM. In conclusion, herbage of birdsfoot trefoil generally had higher vitamin concentrations than white or red clover, but differences between the two grass species were small and inconsistent....

  19. Genome skimming reveals the origin of the Jerusalem Artichoke tuber crop species: neither from Jerusalem nor an artichoke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, Dan G; Kane, Nolan C; Ebert, Daniel P; Rieseberg, Loren H

    2014-02-01

    The perennial sunflower Helianthus tuberosus, known as Jerusalem Artichoke or Sunchoke, was cultivated in eastern North America before European contact. As such, it represents one of the few taxa that can support an independent origin of domestication in this region. Its tubers were adopted as a source of food and forage when the species was transferred to the Old World in the early 1600s, and are still used today. Despite the cultural and economic importance of this tuber crop species, its origin is debated. Competing hypotheses implicate the occurrence of polyploidization with or without hybridization, and list the annual sunflower H. annuus and five distantly related perennial sunflower species as potential parents. Here, we test these scenarios by skimming the genomes of diverse populations of Jerusalem Artichoke and its putative progenitors. We identify relationships among Helianthus taxa using complete plastomes (151 551 bp), partial mitochondrial genomes (196 853 bp) and 35S (8196 bp) and 5S (514 bp) ribosomal DNA. Our results refute the possibility that Jerusalem Artichoke is of H. annuus ancestry. We provide the first genetic evidence that this species originated recursively from perennial sunflowers of central-eastern North America via hybridization between tetraploid Hairy Sunflower and diploid Sawtooth Sunflower. © 2013 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2013 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. Seedbed preparation influence on morphometric characteristics of perennial grasses of a semi-arid rangeland in Kenya

    OpenAIRE

    Opiyo, Francis EO; Ekaya, Wellington N; Nyariki, Dickson M; Mureithi, Stephen Mwangi

    2011-01-01

    Semi-arid rangelands in Kenya are an important source of forage for both domestic and wild animals. However, indigenous perennial grasses notably Cenchrus ciliaris (African foxtail grass), Eragrostis superba (Maasai love grass) and Enteropogon macrostachyus (Bush rye grass) are disappearing at an alarming rate. Efforts to re-introduce them through restoration programs have often yielded little success. This can partly be attributed to failure of topsoil to capture and store scarce water to me...

  1. Legumes and forage species sole or intercropped with corn in soybean-corn succession in midwestern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gessí Ceccon

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The feasibility of no-tillage in the Cerrado (Savanna-like vegetation of Brazil depends on the production of sufficient above-ground crop residue, which can be increased by corn-forage intercropping. This study evaluated how above-ground crop residue production and yields of soybean and late-season corn in a soybean-corn rotation were influenced by the following crops in the year before soybean: corn (Zea mays L. intercropped with Brachiaria (Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu, B. decumbens cv. Basilisk, B. ruziziensis, cv. comum., Panicummaximum cv. Tanzânia, sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea L., pigeon pea [Cajanus cajan (L. Millsp]; sole corn, forage sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L. Moench (cv. Santa Elisa], and ruzi grass. In March 2005, corn and forage species were planted in alternate rows spaced 0.90 m apart, and sole forage species were planted in rows spaced 0.45 m apart. In October 2005, the forages were killed with glyphosate and soybean was planted. After the soybean harvest in March 2006, sole late-season corn was planted in the entire experimental area. Corn grain and stover yields were unaffected by intercropping. Above-ground crop residue was greater when corn was intercropped with Tanzania grass (10.7 Mg ha-1, Marandu (10.1 Mg ha-1, and Ruzi Grass (9.8 Mg ha-1 than when corn was not intercropped (4.0 Mg ha-1. The intercropped treatments increased the percentage of soil surface covered with crop residue. Soybean and corn grain yields were higher after sole ruzi grass and intercropped ruzi grass than after other crops. The intercropping corn with Brachiaria spp. and corn with Panicum spp. increases above-ground crop residue production and maintains nutrients in the soil without reducing late-season corn yield and the viability of no-till in the midwestern region of Brazil.

  2. Forage production in mixed grazing systems of elephant grass with arrowleaf clover or forage peanut

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    Daiane Cristine Seibt

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Most dairy production systems are pasture-based, usually consisting of sole grass species. This system facilitates pasture management, but results in high production costs, mainly because of nitrogen fertilizers. An alternative to making forage systems more sustainable is to introduce legumes into the pasture. Mixed pastures allow better forage distribution over time and reduce fertilization costs. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate, throughout the year, three forage systems (FS: FS1 (control - elephant grass (EG, ryegrass (RG, and spontaneous species (SS; FS2 - EG + RG + SS + arrowleaf clover; and FS3 - EG + RG + SS + forage peanut. Elephant grass was planted in rows spaced 4 m apart. Ryegrass was sown between the EG lines, in the winter. Arrowleaf clover was sown according to the respective treatments and forage peanut was preserved. Evaluation was carried out using Holstein cows. The experiment was arranged in a completely randomized design, with three treatments (FS, and three repetitions (paddocks with repeated measurements (grazing cycles. Forage mass achieved 3.46, 3.80, and 3.91 t ha-1 for the treatments FS1, FS2 and FS3, respectively. The forage systems intercropped with legumes produced the best results.

  3. The Forecasting of Adaptation Potential of Herbaceous Perennials

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    Belykh, O. A.

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available This work investigates the problem of the ecobiomorph productive features formation of perennial herbs Ranunculaceae family forecasting on the basis of quantitative connections of species parameters with the leading geomorphological factors of South Siberia environment.

  4. Tradeoffs between water requirements and yield stability in annual vs. perennial crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vico, Giulia; Brunsell, Nathaniel A.

    2018-02-01

    Population growth and changes in climate and diets will likely further increase the pressure on agriculture and water resources globally. Currently, staple crops are obtained from annuals plants. A shift towards perennial crops may enhance many ecosystem services, but at the cost of higher water requirements and lower yields. It is still unclear when the advantages of perennial crops overcome their disadvantages and perennial crops are thus a sustainable solution. Here we combine a probabilistic description of the soil water balance and crop development with an extensive dataset of traits of congeneric annuals and perennials to identify the conditions for which perennial crops are more viable than annual ones with reference to yield, yield stability, and effective use of water. We show that the larger and more developed roots of perennial crops allow a better exploitation of soil water resources and a reduction of yield variability with respect to annual species, but their yields remain lower when considering grain crops. Furthermore, perennial crops have higher and more variable irrigation requirements and lower water productivity. These results are important to understand the potential consequences for yield, its stability, and water resource use of a shift from annual to perennial crops and, more generally, if perennial crops may be more resilient than annual crops in the face of climatic fluctuations.

  5. Yield and soil carbon sequestration in grazed pastures sown with two or five forage species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Increasing plant species richness is often associated with an increase in productivity and associated ecosystem services such as soil C sequestration. In this paper we report on a nine-year experiment to evaluate the relative forage production and C sequestration potential of grazed pastures sown to...

  6. Forage grasses with lower uptake of caesium and strontium could provide 'safer' crops for radiologically contaminated areas.

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    Beth Penrose

    Full Text Available Substitution of a species or cultivar with higher uptake of an element by one with lower uptake has been proposed as a remediation strategy following accidental releases of radioactivity. However, despite the importance of pasture systems for radiological dose, species/cultivar substitution has not been thoroughly investigated for forage grasses. 397 cultivars from four forage grass species; hybrid ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. x Lolium multiflorum Lam., perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L., Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam. and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Shreb.; were sampled from 19 field-based breeding experiments in Aberystwyth and Edinburgh (UK in spring 2013 and analysed for caesium (Cs and strontium (Sr concentrations. In order to calculate concentration ratios (CRs; the concentration of an element in a plant in relation to the concentration in the soil, soils from the experiments were also analysed to calculate extractable concentrations of Cs and Sr. To test if cultivars have consistently low Cs and Sr concentration ratios, 17 hybrid ryegrass cultivars were sampled from both sites again in summer 2013 and spring and summer 2014. Tall fescue cultivars had lower Cs and Sr CRs than the other species. Three of the selected 17 hybrid ryegrass cultivars had consistently low Cs CRs, two had consistently low Sr CRs and one had consistently low Cs and Sr CRs. Cultivar substitution could reduce Cs CRs by up to 14-fold and Sr CRs by 4-fold in hybrid ryegrass. The identification of species and cultivars with consistently low CRs suggests that species or cultivar substitution could be an effective remediation strategy for contaminated areas.

  7. Foraging strategies of the ant Ectatomma vizottoi (Hymenoptera, Formicidae

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    Luan D. Lima

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Foraging strategies of the ant Ectatomma vizottoi (Hymenoptera, Formicidae. Foraging activity may be limited by temperature, humidity, radiation, wind, and other abiotic factors, all of which can affect energy costs during foraging. Ectatomma vizottoi's biology has only recently been studied, and no detailed information is available on its foraging patterns or diet in the field. For this reason, and because foraging activity is an important part of the ecological success of social insects, the present study aimed to investigate E. vizottoi's foraging strategies and dietary habits. First, we determined how abiotic factors constrained E. vizottoi's foraging patterns in the field by monitoring the foraging activity of 16 colonies on eight different days across two seasons. Second, we characterized E. vizottoi's diet by monitoring another set of 26 colonies during peak foraging activity. Our results show that E. vizottoi has foraging strategies that are similar to those of congeneric species. In spite of having a low efficiency index, colonies adopted strategies that allowed them to successfully obtain food resources while avoiding adverse conditions. These strategies included preying on other ant species, a foraging tactic that could arise if a wide variety of food items are not available in the environment or if E. vizottoi simply prefers, regardless of resource availability, to prey on other invertebrates and especially on other ant species.

  8. Toward Genomics-Based Breeding in C3 Cool-Season Perennial Grasses

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    Talukder, Shyamal K.; Saha, Malay C.

    2017-01-01

    Most important food and feed crops in the world belong to the C3 grass family. The future of food security is highly reliant on achieving genetic gains of those grasses. Conventional breeding methods have already reached a plateau for improving major crops. Genomics tools and resources have opened an avenue to explore genome-wide variability and make use of the variation for enhancing genetic gains in breeding programs. Major C3 annual cereal breeding programs are well equipped with genomic tools; however, genomic research of C3 cool-season perennial grasses is lagging behind. In this review, we discuss the currently available genomics tools and approaches useful for C3 cool-season perennial grass breeding. Along with a general review, we emphasize the discussion focusing on forage grasses that were considered orphan and have little or no genetic information available. Transcriptome sequencing and genotype-by-sequencing technology for genome-wide marker detection using next-generation sequencing (NGS) are very promising as genomics tools. Most C3 cool-season perennial grass members have no prior genetic information; thus NGS technology will enhance collinear study with other C3 model grasses like Brachypodium and rice. Transcriptomics data can be used for identification of functional genes and molecular markers, i.e., polymorphism markers and simple sequence repeats (SSRs). Genome-wide association study with NGS-based markers will facilitate marker identification for marker-assisted selection. With limited genetic information, genomic selection holds great promise to breeders for attaining maximum genetic gain of the cool-season C3 perennial grasses. Application of all these tools can ensure better genetic gains, reduce length of selection cycles, and facilitate cultivar development to meet the future demand for food and fodder. PMID:28798766

  9. Toward Genomics-Based Breeding in C3 Cool-Season Perennial Grasses

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    Shyamal K. Talukder

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Most important food and feed crops in the world belong to the C3 grass family. The future of food security is highly reliant on achieving genetic gains of those grasses. Conventional breeding methods have already reached a plateau for improving major crops. Genomics tools and resources have opened an avenue to explore genome-wide variability and make use of the variation for enhancing genetic gains in breeding programs. Major C3 annual cereal breeding programs are well equipped with genomic tools; however, genomic research of C3 cool-season perennial grasses is lagging behind. In this review, we discuss the currently available genomics tools and approaches useful for C3 cool-season perennial grass breeding. Along with a general review, we emphasize the discussion focusing on forage grasses that were considered orphan and have little or no genetic information available. Transcriptome sequencing and genotype-by-sequencing technology for genome-wide marker detection using next-generation sequencing (NGS are very promising as genomics tools. Most C3 cool-season perennial grass members have no prior genetic information; thus NGS technology will enhance collinear study with other C3 model grasses like Brachypodium and rice. Transcriptomics data can be used for identification of functional genes and molecular markers, i.e., polymorphism markers and simple sequence repeats (SSRs. Genome-wide association study with NGS-based markers will facilitate marker identification for marker-assisted selection. With limited genetic information, genomic selection holds great promise to breeders for attaining maximum genetic gain of the cool-season C3 perennial grasses. Application of all these tools can ensure better genetic gains, reduce length of selection cycles, and facilitate cultivar development to meet the future demand for food and fodder.

  10. Foraging behavior and virulence of some entomopathogenic nematodes

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    Manana A. Lortkipanidze

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available At present the biological control as a pest control technology is becoming more desirable. Biological formulations on basis of entomopathogenic nematodes are one of the effective means for the protection of agricultural and forest plants from harmful insects. Nowadays, the use of entomopathogenic nematodes as biological control agents is a key component in IPM system. The foraging strategies of entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs vary between species. This variation is consistent with use of different foraging strategies between ambush, cruise and intermediate to find their host insects. In order to ambush prey, some species of EPNs nictate, or raise their bodies of the soil surface so they are better poised to attach passing insects, other species adopt a cruising strategy and rarely nictate. Some species adopt an intermediate strategy between ambush and cruise. We compared in laboratory the foraging strategies of the entomopathogenic nematode species: Steinernema carpocapsae, Heterorhabditis bacteriophora and the recently described species Steinernema tbilisiensis and assessed their virulence against mealworm beetle, Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae. The tests showed that S. tbilisiensis adopts both foraging strategies.

  11. Patch dynamics of a foraging assemblage of bees.

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    Wright, David Hamilton

    1985-03-01

    The composition and dynamics of foraging assemblages of bees were examined from the standpoint of species-level arrival and departure processes in patches of flowers. Experiments with bees visiting 4 different species of flowers in subalpine meadows in Colorado gave the following results: 1) In enriched patches the rates of departure of bees were reduced, resulting in increases in both the number of bees per species and the average number of species present. 2) The reduction in bee departure rates from enriched patches was due to mechanical factors-increased flower handling time, and to behavioral factors-an increase in the number of flowers visited per inflorescence and in the number of inflorescences visited per patch. Bees foraging in enriched patches could collect nectar 30-45% faster than those foraging in control patches. 3) The quantitative changes in foraging assemblages due to enrichment, in terms of means and variances of species population sizes, fraction of time a species was present in a patch, and in mean and variance of the number of species present, were in reasonable agreement with predictions drawn from queuing theory and studies in island biogeography. 4) Experiments performed with 2 species of flowers with different corolla tube lengths demonstrated that manipulation of resources of differing availability had unequal effects on particular subsets of the larger foraging community. The arrival-departure process of bees on flowers and the immigration-extinction process of species on islands are contrasted, and the value of the stochastic, species-level approach to community composition is briefly discussed.

  12. Foraging behavior and success of a mesopelagic predator in the northeast Pacific Ocean: insights from a data-rich species, the northern elephant seal.

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    Patrick W Robinson

    Full Text Available The mesopelagic zone of the northeast Pacific Ocean is an important foraging habitat for many predators, yet few studies have addressed the factors driving basin-scale predator distributions or inter-annual variability in foraging and breeding success. Understanding these processes is critical to reveal how conditions at sea cascade to population-level effects. To begin addressing these challenging questions, we collected diving, tracking, foraging success, and natality data for 297 adult female northern elephant seal migrations from 2004 to 2010. During the longer post-molting migration, individual energy gain rates were significant predictors of pregnancy. At sea, seals focused their foraging effort along a narrow band corresponding to the boundary between the sub-arctic and sub-tropical gyres. In contrast to shallow-diving predators, elephant seals target the gyre-gyre boundary throughout the year rather than follow the southward winter migration of surface features, such as the Transition Zone Chlorophyll Front. We also assessed the impact of added transit costs by studying seals at a colony near the southern extent of the species' range, 1,150 km to the south. A much larger proportion of seals foraged locally, implying plasticity in foraging strategies and possibly prey type. While these findings are derived from a single species, the results may provide insight to the foraging patterns of many other meso-pelagic predators in the northeast Pacific Ocean.

  13. Determining spatio-temporal distribution of bee forage species of Al-Baha region based on ground inventorying supported with GIS applications and Remote Sensed Satellite Image analysis

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    Nuru Adgaba

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In arid zones, the shortage of bee forage is critical and usually compels beekeepers to move their colonies in search of better forages. Identifying and mapping the spatiotemporal distribution of the bee forages over given area is important for better management of bee colonies. In this study honey bee plants in the target areas were inventoried following, ground inventory work supported with GIS applications. The study was conducted on 85 large plots of 50 × 50 m each. At each plot, data on species name, height, base diameter, crown height, crown diameter has been taken for each plant with their respective geographical positions. The data were stored, and processed using Trimble GPS supported with ArcGIS10 software program. The data were used to estimate the relative frequency, density, abundance and species diversity, species important value index and apicultural value of the species. In addition, Remotely Sensed Satellite Image of the area was obtained and processed using Hopfield Artificial Neural Network techniques. During the study, 182 species from 49 plant families were identified as bee forages of the target area. From the total number of species; shrubs, herbs and trees were accounting for 61%, 27.67%, and 11.53% respectively. Of which Ziziphus spina-christi, Acacia tortilis, Acacia origina, Acacia asak, Lavandula dentata, and Hypoestes forskaolii were the major nectar source plants of the area in their degree of importance. The average vegetation cover values of the study areas were low (<30% with low Shannon’s species diversity indices (H′ of 0.5–1.52 for different sites. Based on the eco-climatological factors and the variations in their flowering period, these major bee forage species were found to form eight distinct spatiotemporal categories which allow beekeepers to migrate their colonies to exploit the resources at different seasons and place. The Remote Sensed Satellite Image analysis confirmed the spatial

  14. Effect of yearling steer sequence grazing of perennial and annual forages in an integrated crop and livestock system on grazing performance, delayed feedlot entry, finishing performance, carcass measurements, and systems economics.

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    Sentürklü, Songul; Landblom, Douglas G; Maddock, Robert; Petry, Tim; Wachenheim, Cheryl J; Paisley, Steve I

    2018-06-04

    In a 2-yr study, spring-born yearling steers (n = 144), previously grown to gain <0.454 kg·steer-1·d-1, following weaning in the fall, were stratified by BW and randomly assigned to three retained ownership rearing systems (three replications) in early May. Systems were 1) feedlot (FLT), 2) steers that grazed perennial crested wheatgrass (CWG) and native range (NR) before FLT entry (PST), and 3) steers that grazed perennial CWG and NR, and then field pea-barley (PBLY) mix and unharvested corn (UC) before FLT entry (ANN). The PST and ANN steers grazed 181 d before FLT entry. During grazing, ADG of ANN steers (1.01 ± SE kg/d) and PST steers (0.77 ± SE kg/d) did not differ (P = 0.31). But even though grazing cost per steer was greater (P = 0.002) for ANN vs. PST, grazing cost per kg of gain did not differ (P = 0.82). The ANN forage treatment improved LM area (P = 0.03) and percent i.m. fat (P = 0.001). The length of the finishing period was greatest (P < 0.001) for FLT (142 d), intermediate for PST (91 d), and least for ANN (66 d). Steer starting (P = 0.015) and ending finishing BW (P = 0.022) of ANN and PST were greater than FLT steers. Total FLT BW gain was greater for FLT steers (P = 0.017), but there were no treatment differences for ADG, (P = 0.16), DMI (P = 0.21), G: F (P = 0.82), and feed cost per kg of gain (P = 0.61). However, feed cost per steer was greatest for FLT ($578.30), least for ANN ($276.12), and intermediate for PST ($381.18) (P = 0.043). There was a tendency for FLT steer HCW to be less than ANN and PST, which did not differ (P = 0.076). There was no difference between treatments for LM area (P = 0.094), backfat depth (P = 0.28), marbling score (P = 0.18), USDA yield grade (P = 0.44), and quality grade (P = 0.47). Grazing steer net return ranged from an ANN system high of $9.09/steer to a FLT control system net loss of -$298 and a PST system that was slightly less than the ANN system (-$30.10). Ten-year (2003 to 2012) hedging and net return

  15. Facilitation influences patterns of perennial species abundance and richness in a subtropical dune system.

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    Dalotto, Cecilia E S; Sühs, Rafael B; Dechoum, Michele S; Pugnaire, Francisco I; Peroni, Nivaldo; Castellani, Tânia T

    2018-04-01

    Positive interactions in plant communities are under-reported in subtropical systems most likely because they are not identified as stressful environments. However, environmental factors or disturbance can limit plant growth in any system and lead to stressful conditions. For instance, salinity and low nutrient and water availability generate a gradient of stressful conditions in coastal systems depending on distance to shore. In a tropical coastal system in SE Brazil, we aimed to assess whether Guapira opposita , a shrub common in restinga environments, acted as nurse involved in ecological succession and which factors influenced its facilitation process. We sampled perennial species above 10 cm in height under the canopy of 35 G. opposita individuals and in neighbouring open areas. Shrub height, canopy area and distance to freshwater bodies were measured in the field, and distance to the ocean was obtained from aerial images. In addition, we measured the distance to the closest forest patch as a potential source of seeds. Plant abundance and species richness were higher under the canopy of G. opposita than in open areas. Facilitation by G. opposita was mainly determined by shrub height, which had a positive relationship with woody and bromeliads abundance and species richness while there was no relationship with the other factors. Overall, our data evidence that tropical environments may be highly stressful for plants and that nurse species play a key role in the regeneration of restinga environments, where their presence is critical to maintain ecosystem diversity and function.

  16. STUDY ON PHYTOEXTRACTION BALANCE OF ZN, CD, PB FROM MINE-WASTE POLLUTED SOILS BY USING MEDICAGO SATIVA AND TRIFOLIUM PRATENSE SPECIES

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    B. LIXANDRU

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available For a term of two years was studied phytoextractive potential of Zn, Cd and Pb using successive culture of alfalfa (Medicago sativa and red clover (Trifolium pratense. In the experimental plot was incorporated a quantity of 20 kg mine waste per square meter, providing in soil 1209 mg Zn/kg d.s., 4.70 mg Cd/kg d.s. and 188.2 mg Pb/kg d.s. The metals content accumulated in plants was determined at the two moments of biomass harvesting, and through balance calculations we could establish the phytoextraction efficiency of the two forage-grasses species. The obtained results indicate that both perennial forage-legumes species have a good phytoextractive capacity and tolerance for Zn and Pb, especially Trifolium pratense specie. By using this species as phytoextractors on soil polluted with 3.76 times more Pb and 4.03 times more Zn, is provided the reduction of metallic ions concentration in soil to limits admitted by laws in a period of 3, respectively, 4 years.

  17. PERPHECLIM ACCAF Project - Perennial fruit crops and forest phenology evolution facing climatic changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia de Cortazar-Atauri, Iñaki; Audergon, Jean Marc; Bertuzzi, Patrick; Anger, Christel; Bonhomme, Marc; Chuine, Isabelle; Davi, Hendrik; Delzon, Sylvain; Duchêne, Eric; Legave, Jean Michel; Raynal, Hélène; Pichot, Christian; Van Leeuwen, Cornelis; Perpheclim Team

    2015-04-01

    Phenology is a bio-indicator of climate evolutions. Measurements of phenological stages on perennial species provide actually significant illustrations and assessments of the impact of climate change. Phenology is also one of the main key characteristics of the capacity of adaptation of perennial species, generating questions about their consequences on plant growth and development or on fruit quality. Predicting phenology evolution and adaptative capacities of perennial species need to override three main methodological limitations: 1) existing observations and associated databases are scattered and sometimes incomplete, rendering difficult implementation of multi-site study of genotype-environment interaction analyses; 2) there are not common protocols to observe phenological stages; 3) access to generic phenological models platforms is still very limited. In this context, the PERPHECLIM project, which is funded by the Adapting Agriculture and Forestry to Climate Change Meta-Program (ACCAF) from INRA (French National Institute of Agronomic Research), has the objective to develop the necessary infrastructure at INRA level (observatories, information system, modeling tools) to enable partners to study the phenology of various perennial species (grapevine, fruit trees and forest trees). Currently the PERPHECLIM project involves 27 research units in France. The main activities currently developed are: define protocols and observation forms to observe phenology for various species of interest for the project; organizing observation training; develop generic modeling solutions to simulate phenology (Phenological Modelling Platform and modelling platform solutions); support in building research projects at national and international level; develop environment/genotype observation networks for fruit trees species; develop an information system managing data and documentation concerning phenology. Finally, PERPHECLIM project aims to build strong collaborations with public

  18. Boa constrictor (Boa constrictor): foraging behavior

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    Sorrell, G.G.; Boback, M.S.; Reed, R.N.; Green, S.; Montgomery, Chad E.; DeSouza, L.S.; Chiaraviglio, M.

    2011-01-01

    Boa constrictor is often referred to as a sit-and-wait or ambush forager that chooses locations to maximize the likelihood of prey encounters (Greene 1983. In Janzen [ed.], Costa Rica Natural History, pp. 380-382. Univ. Chicago Press, Illinois). However, as more is learned about the natural history of snakes in general, the dichotomy between active versus ambush foraging is becoming blurred. Herein, we describe an instance of diurnal active foraging by a B. constrictor, illustrating that this species exhibits a range of foraging behaviors.

  19. Fearful foragers: honey bees tune colony and individual foraging to multi-predator presence and food quality.

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    Ken Tan

    Full Text Available Fear can have strong ecosystem effects by giving predators a role disproportionate to their actual kill rates. In bees, fear is shown through foragers avoiding dangerous food sites, thereby reducing the fitness of pollinated plants. However, it remains unclear how fear affects pollinators in a complex natural scenario involving multiple predator species and different patch qualities. We studied hornets, Vespa velutina (smaller and V. tropica (bigger preying upon the Asian honey bee, Apis cerana in China. Hornets hunted bees on flowers and were attacked by bee colonies. Bees treated the bigger hornet species (which is 4 fold more massive as more dangerous. It received 4.5 fold more attackers than the smaller hornet species. We tested bee responses to a three-feeder array with different hornet species and varying resource qualities. When all feeders offered 30% sucrose solution (w/w, colony foraging allocation, individual visits, and individual patch residence times were reduced according to the degree of danger. Predator presence reduced foraging visits by 55-79% and residence times by 17-33%. When feeders offered different reward levels (15%, 30%, or 45% sucrose, colony and individual foraging favored higher sugar concentrations. However, when balancing food quality against multiple threats (sweeter food corresponding to higher danger, colonies exhibited greater fear than individuals. Colonies decreased foraging at low and high danger patches. Individuals exhibited less fear and only decreased visits to the high danger patch. Contrasting individual with emergent colony-level effects of fear can thus illuminate how predators shape pollination by social bees.

  20. GPS tracking devices reveal foraging strategies of black-legged kittiwakes

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    Kotzerka, Jana; Garthe, Stefan; Hatch, Scott A.

    2010-01-01

    The Black-legged Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla is the most abundant gull species in the world, but some populations have declined in recent years, apparently due to food shortage. Kittiwakes are surface feeders and thus can compensate for low food availability only by increasing their foraging range and/or devoting more time to foraging. The species is widely studied in many respects, but long-distance foraging and the limitations of conventional radio telemetry have kept its foraging behavior largely out of view. The development of Global Positioning System (GPS) loggers is advancing rapidly. With devices as small as 8 g now available, it is possible to use this technology for tracking relatively small species of oceanic birds like kittiwakes. Here we present the first results of GPS telemetry applied to Black-legged Kittiwakes in 2007 in the North Pacific. All but one individual foraged in the neritic zone north of the island. Three birds performed foraging trips only close to the colony (within 13 km), while six birds had foraging ranges averaging about 40 km. The maximum foraging range was 59 km, and the maximum distance traveled was 165 km. Maximum trip duration was 17 h (mean 8 h). An apparently bimodal distribution of foraging ranges affords new insight on the variable foraging behaviour of Black-legged Kittiwakes. Our successful deployment of GPS loggers on kittiwakes holds much promise for telemetry studies on many other bird species of similar size and provides an incentive for applying this new approach in future studies.

  1. Comparative sucrose responsiveness in Apis mellifera and A. cerana foragers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Wenchao; Kuang, Haiou; Wang, Shanshan; Wang, Jie; Liu, Wei; Wu, Zhenhong; Tian, Yuanyuan; Huang, Zachary Y; Miao, Xiaoqing

    2013-01-01

    In the European honey bee, Apis mellifera, pollen foragers have a higher sucrose responsiveness than nectar foragers when tested using a proboscis extension response (PER) assay. In addition, Africanized honey bees have a higher sucrose responsiveness than European honey bees. Based on the biology of the Eastern honey bee, A. cerana, we hypothesized that A. cerana should also have a higher responsiveness to sucrose than A. mellifera. To test this hypothesis, we compared the sucrose thresholds of pollen foragers and nectar foragers in both A. cerana and A. mellifera in Fujian Province, China. Pollen foragers were more responsive to sucrose than nectar foragers in both species, consistent with previous studies. However, contrary to our hypothesis, A. mellifera was more responsive than A. cerana. We also demonstrated that this higher sucrose responsiveness in A. mellifera was not due to differences in the colony environment by co-fostering two species of bees in the same mixed-species colonies. Because A. mellifera foragers were more responsive to sucrose, we predicted that their nectar foragers should bring in less concentrated nectar compared to that of A. cerana. However, we found no differences between the two species. We conclude that A. cerana shows a different pattern in sucrose responsiveness from that of Africanized bees. There may be other mechanisms that enable A. cerana to perform well in areas with sparse nectar resources.

  2. Comparative sucrose responsiveness in Apis mellifera and A. cerana foragers.

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    Wenchao Yang

    Full Text Available In the European honey bee, Apis mellifera, pollen foragers have a higher sucrose responsiveness than nectar foragers when tested using a proboscis extension response (PER assay. In addition, Africanized honey bees have a higher sucrose responsiveness than European honey bees. Based on the biology of the Eastern honey bee, A. cerana, we hypothesized that A. cerana should also have a higher responsiveness to sucrose than A. mellifera. To test this hypothesis, we compared the sucrose thresholds of pollen foragers and nectar foragers in both A. cerana and A. mellifera in Fujian Province, China. Pollen foragers were more responsive to sucrose than nectar foragers in both species, consistent with previous studies. However, contrary to our hypothesis, A. mellifera was more responsive than A. cerana. We also demonstrated that this higher sucrose responsiveness in A. mellifera was not due to differences in the colony environment by co-fostering two species of bees in the same mixed-species colonies. Because A. mellifera foragers were more responsive to sucrose, we predicted that their nectar foragers should bring in less concentrated nectar compared to that of A. cerana. However, we found no differences between the two species. We conclude that A. cerana shows a different pattern in sucrose responsiveness from that of Africanized bees. There may be other mechanisms that enable A. cerana to perform well in areas with sparse nectar resources.

  3. Comparative Sucrose Responsiveness in Apis mellifera and A. cerana Foragers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Wenchao; Kuang, Haiou; Wang, Shanshan; Wang, Jie; Liu, Wei; Wu, Zhenhong; Tian, Yuanyuan; Huang, Zachary Y.; Miao, Xiaoqing

    2013-01-01

    In the European honey bee, Apis mellifera, pollen foragers have a higher sucrose responsiveness than nectar foragers when tested using a proboscis extension response (PER) assay. In addition, Africanized honey bees have a higher sucrose responsiveness than European honey bees. Based on the biology of the Eastern honey bee, A. cerana, we hypothesized that A. cerana should also have a higher responsiveness to sucrose than A. mellifera. To test this hypothesis, we compared the sucrose thresholds of pollen foragers and nectar foragers in both A. cerana and A. mellifera in Fujian Province, China. Pollen foragers were more responsive to sucrose than nectar foragers in both species, consistent with previous studies. However, contrary to our hypothesis, A. mellifera was more responsive than A. cerana. We also demonstrated that this higher sucrose responsiveness in A. mellifera was not due to differences in the colony environment by co-fostering two species of bees in the same mixed-species colonies. Because A. mellifera foragers were more responsive to sucrose, we predicted that their nectar foragers should bring in less concentrated nectar compared to that of A. cerana. However, we found no differences between the two species. We conclude that A. cerana shows a different pattern in sucrose responsiveness from that of Africanized bees. There may be other mechanisms that enable A. cerana to perform well in areas with sparse nectar resources. PMID:24194958

  4. Reproductive effort of some annual and perennial plant species: impact of successional sequence, habitat conditions and plant size

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shaukat, S.; Khan, M.A.; Zaidi, S.; Siddiqui, M.F.; Khan, N.; Zafar, H.

    2013-01-01

    The reproductive effort of some annual and perennial plant species was investigated with respect to successional sequence, habitat conditions and plant size. in the psammosere succession (dune succession), the reproductive effort (RE) of Cressa cretica and A triplex griffithii was significantly greater in the early stage compared to that in late succession. Likewise, in relation to lithosere succession, Sporobolus arabicus. Pluchea lanceolata and Vernonia cenerescens all showed high reproductive effort in early part of succession compared to that of late succession. The annuals (S. arabicus and P lance/ala) exhibited greater reproductive effort compared to the perennial species Vernonia cinerescens. Examination of the Impact of site differences on reproductive effort showed that four grasses including Selaria intermedia, Chioris harbata, Cenchrus hiflorus, and Eragroslis pilosa were found to have significantly (P<0.05) greater reproductive effort in site 1 (near cultivated field), compared to site 2 (a vacant lot), which had low nutrient level compared to site 1. The reproductive effort of Sonclius asper (a composite) did not exhibit significant difference between sites. The investigation of relationships between plant size (volume) and reproductive effort of Solanuin forskalii, Senna holosericea and Heliolropium ophioglossum showed positive correlations between plant size and reproductive effort. Solanum forskalii and Senna holosericca, in particular, exhibited a close association in this respect. It is concluded that: 1) RE is greater in early compared to late succession, 2) RE changes with the habitat and 3) there seems to be a direct relationship between RE and plant size. (author)

  5. Nutritional characteristics of forages from Niger

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Infascelli

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available In the production systems of the semi-arid areas low quality forages are commonly used as the basal diet (Wilkins, 2000 and, as a consequence, the nutritional status of ruminants depends mainly on the ability of rumen fermentation to yield nutrients such as the short chain fatty acids and microbial biomass (Preston and Leng, 1987. The forages browsed by the livestock can be classified into two main groups: ephemeral annual plants, which germinate and remain green for only a few weeks after rain, perennial shrubs and tree fodders. Despite their potential as feeds, little research has determined their nutritive value. In vivo evaluation is the best estimation method of feed’s nutritional value, however it is very laborious and difficult to standardize with browsing animals. O the contrary, in vitro methods are less expensive, less time consuming and allow a better control of experimental conditions than in vivo experiments. The in vitro gas production technique (IVGPT appears to be the most suitable method for use in developing countries where resources may be limited (Makkar, 2004. Increased interest in use of non-conventional feed resources has led to an increase in use of this technique, since IVGPT can provide useful data on digestion kinetics of both the soluble and insoluble fractions of feedstuffs. The aim of the present research was to evaluate twelve forages from the arid zone of Niger using the IVGPT.

  6. Targeted genotyping-by-sequencing permits cost-effective identification and discrimination of pasture grass species and cultivars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pembleton, Luke W; Drayton, Michelle C; Bain, Melissa; Baillie, Rebecca C; Inch, Courtney; Spangenberg, German C; Wang, Junping; Forster, John W; Cogan, Noel O I

    2016-05-01

    A targeted amplicon-based genotyping-by-sequencing approach has permitted cost-effective and accurate discrimination between ryegrass species (perennial, Italian and inter-species hybrid), and identification of cultivars based on bulked samples. Perennial ryegrass and Italian ryegrass are the most important temperate forage species for global agriculture, and are represented in the commercial pasture seed market by numerous cultivars each composed of multiple highly heterozygous individuals. Previous studies have identified difficulties in the use of morphophysiological criteria to discriminate between these two closely related taxa. Recently, a highly multiplexed single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based genotyping assay has been developed that permits accurate differentiation between both species and cultivars of ryegrasses at the genetic level. This assay has since been further developed into an amplicon-based genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) approach implemented on a second-generation sequencing platform, allowing accelerated throughput and ca. sixfold reduction in cost. Using the GBS approach, 63 cultivars of perennial, Italian and interspecific hybrid ryegrasses, as well as intergeneric Festulolium hybrids, were genotyped. The genetic relationships between cultivars were interpreted in terms of known breeding histories and indistinct species boundaries within the Lolium genus, as well as suitability of current cultivar registration methodologies. An example of applicability to quality assurance and control (QA/QC) of seed purity is also described. Rapid, low-cost genotypic assays provide new opportunities for breeders to more fully explore genetic diversity within breeding programs, allowing the combination of novel unique genetic backgrounds. Such tools also offer the potential to more accurately define cultivar identities, allowing protection of varieties in the commercial market and supporting processes of cultivar accreditation and quality assurance.

  7. Facilitation influences patterns of perennial species abundance and richness in a subtropical dune system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalotto, Cecilia E S; Sühs, Rafael B; Dechoum, Michele S; Pugnaire, Francisco I; Peroni, Nivaldo; Castellani, Tânia T

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Positive interactions in plant communities are under-reported in subtropical systems most likely because they are not identified as stressful environments. However, environmental factors or disturbance can limit plant growth in any system and lead to stressful conditions. For instance, salinity and low nutrient and water availability generate a gradient of stressful conditions in coastal systems depending on distance to shore. In a tropical coastal system in SE Brazil, we aimed to assess whether Guapira opposita, a shrub common in restinga environments, acted as nurse involved in ecological succession and which factors influenced its facilitation process. We sampled perennial species above 10 cm in height under the canopy of 35 G. opposita individuals and in neighbouring open areas. Shrub height, canopy area and distance to freshwater bodies were measured in the field, and distance to the ocean was obtained from aerial images. In addition, we measured the distance to the closest forest patch as a potential source of seeds. Plant abundance and species richness were higher under the canopy of G. opposita than in open areas. Facilitation by G. opposita was mainly determined by shrub height, which had a positive relationship with woody and bromeliads abundance and species richness while there was no relationship with the other factors. Overall, our data evidence that tropical environments may be highly stressful for plants and that nurse species play a key role in the regeneration of restinga environments, where their presence is critical to maintain ecosystem diversity and function. PMID:29644027

  8. Forage mass and the nutritive value of pastures mixed with forage peanut and red clover

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Lima de Azevedo Junior

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this research was to estimate three pasture-based systems mixed with elephantgrass + spontaneous growth species, annual ryegrass, for pasture-based system 1; elephantgrass + spontaneous growth species + forage peanut, for pasture-based system 2; and elephantgrass + spontaneous growth species + annual ryegrass + red clover, for pasture-based system 3. Elephantgrass was planted in rows 4 m apart from each other. During the cool-season, annual ryegrass was sown in the alleys between the rows of elephantgrass; forage peanut and red clover were sown in the alleys between the elephantgrass according to the respective treatment. The experimental design was totally randomized in the three treatments (pasture-based systems, two replicates (paddocks in completely split-plot time (grazing cycles. Holstein cows receiving 5.5 kg-daily complementary concentrate feed were used in the evaluation. Pre-grazing forage mass, botanical composition and stocking rate were evaluated. Samples of simulated grazing were collected to analyze organic matter (OM, neutral detergent fiber (NDF, crude protein (CP and organic matter in situ digestibility (OMISD. Nine grazing cycles were performed during the experimental period (341 days. The average dry matter values for pre-grazing and stocking rate were 3.34; 3.46; 3.79 t/ha, and 3.28; 3.34; 3.60 AU/ha for each respective pasture-based system. Similar results were observed between the pasture-based systems for OM, NDF, CP and OMISD. Considering forage mass, stocking rate and nutritive value, the pasture-based system intercropped with forage legumes presented better performance.

  9. Terrestrial and Marine Foraging Strategies of an Opportunistic Seabird Species Breeding in the Wadden Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Garthe

    Full Text Available Lesser black-backed gulls Larus fuscus are considered to be mainly pelagic. We assessed the importance of different landscape elements (open sea, tidal flats and inland by comparing marine and terrestrial foraging behaviours in lesser black-backed gulls breeding along the coast of the southern North Sea. We attached GPS data loggers to eight incubating birds and collected information on diet and habitat use. The loggers recorded data for 10-19 days to allow flight-path reconstruction. Lesser black-backed gulls foraged in both offshore and inland areas, but rarely on tidal flats. Targets and directions were similar among all eight individuals. Foraging trips (n = 108 lasted 0.5-26.4 h (mean 8.7 h, and ranges varied from 3.0-79.9 km (mean 30.9 km. The total distance travelled per foraging trip ranged from 7.5-333.6 km (mean 97.9 km. Trips out to sea were significantly more variable in all parameters than inland trips. Presence in inland areas was closely associated with daylight, whereas trips to sea occurred at day and night, but mostly at night. The most common items in pellets were grass (48%, insects (38%, fish (28%, litter (26% and earthworms (20%. There was a significant relationship between the carbon and nitrogen isotope signals in blood and the proportional time each individual spent foraging at sea/land. On land, gulls preferentially foraged on bare ground, with significantly higher use of potato fields and significantly less use of grassland. The flight patterns of lesser black-backed gulls at sea overlapped with fishing-vessel distribution, including small beam trawlers fishing for shrimps in coastal waters close to the colony and large beam-trawlers fishing for flatfish at greater distances. Our data show that individuals made intensive use of the anthropogenic landscape and seascape, indicating that lesser black-backed gulls are not a predominantly marine species during the incubation period.

  10. Planning pastures: taking species attributes to the landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter hardiness limits the use of the productive forage grass perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) in the northeastern United States. Both efforts to breed more cold-tolerant varieties and the changing climate increase the potential of this grass in pastures. Growth chamber studies of thirteen co...

  11. Determining spatio-temporal distribution of bee forage species of Al-Baha region based on ground inventorying supported with GIS applications and Remote Sensed Satellite Image analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adgaba, Nuru; Alghamdi, Ahmed; Sammoud, Rachid; Shenkute, Awraris; Tadesse, Yilma; Ansari, Mahammad J; Sharma, Deepak; Hepburn, Colleen

    2017-07-01

    In arid zones, the shortage of bee forage is critical and usually compels beekeepers to move their colonies in search of better forages. Identifying and mapping the spatiotemporal distribution of the bee forages over given area is important for better management of bee colonies. In this study honey bee plants in the target areas were inventoried following, ground inventory work supported with GIS applications. The study was conducted on 85 large plots of 50 × 50 m each. At each plot, data on species name, height, base diameter, crown height, crown diameter has been taken for each plant with their respective geographical positions. The data were stored, and processed using Trimble GPS supported with ArcGIS10 software program. The data were used to estimate the relative frequency, density, abundance and species diversity, species important value index and apicultural value of the species. In addition, Remotely Sensed Satellite Image of the area was obtained and processed using Hopfield Artificial Neural Network techniques. During the study, 182 species from 49 plant families were identified as bee forages of the target area. From the total number of species; shrubs, herbs and trees were accounting for 61%, 27.67%, and 11.53% respectively. Of which Ziziphus spina-christi , Acacia tortilis , Acacia origina , Acacia asak , Lavandula dentata , and Hypoestes forskaolii were the major nectar source plants of the area in their degree of importance. The average vegetation cover values of the study areas were low (GIS and satellite image processing techniques could be an important tool for characterizing and mapping the available bee forage resources leading to their efficient and sustainable utilization.

  12. Foraging modality and plasticity in foraging traits determine the strength of competitive interactions among carnivorous plants, spiders and toads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Krupa, James J; Rohr, Jason R

    2016-07-01

    Foraging modalities (e.g. passive, sit-and-wait, active) and traits are plastic in some species, but the extent to which this plasticity affects interspecific competition remains unclear. Using a long-term laboratory mesocosm experiment, we quantified competition strength and the plasticity of foraging traits in a guild of generalist predators of arthropods with a range of foraging modalities. Each mesocosm contained eight passively foraging pink sundews, and we employed an experimental design where treatments were the presence or absence of a sit-and-wait foraging spider and actively foraging toad crossed with five levels of prey abundance. We hypothesized that actively foraging toads would outcompete the other species at low prey abundance, but that spiders and sundews would exhibit plasticity in foraging traits to compensate for strong competition when prey were limited. Results generally supported our hypotheses. Toads had a greater effect on sundews at low prey abundances, and toad presence caused spiders to locate webs higher above the ground. Additionally, the closer large spider webs were to the ground, the greater the trichome densities produced by sundews. Also, spider webs were larger with than without toads and as sundew numbers increased, and these effects were more prominent as resources became limited. Finally, spiders negatively affected toad growth only at low prey abundance. These findings highlight the long-term importance of foraging modality and plasticity of foraging traits in determining the strength of competition within and across taxonomic kingdoms. Future research should assess whether plasticity in foraging traits helps to maintain coexistence within this guild and whether foraging modality can be used as a trait to reliably predict the strength of competitive interactions. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2016 British Ecological Society.

  13. Foraging in corallivorous butterflyfish varies with wave exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Mae M.; Pratchett, Morgan S.; Coker, Darren J.; Cvitanovic, Christopher; Fulton, Christopher J.

    2014-06-01

    Understanding the foraging patterns of reef fishes is crucial for determining patterns of resource use and the sensitivity of species to environmental change. While changes in prey availability and interspecific competition have been linked to patterns of prey selection, body condition, and survival in coral reef fishes, rarely has the influence of abiotic environmental conditions on foraging been considered. We used underwater digital video to explore how prey availability and wave exposure influence the behavioural time budgets and prey selectivity of four species of obligate coral-feeding butterflyfishes. All four species displayed high selectivity towards live hard corals, both in terms of time invested and frequency of searching and feeding events. However, our novel analysis revealed that such selectivity was sensitive to wave exposure in some species, despite there being no significant differences in the availability of each prey category across exposures. In most cases, these obligate corallivores increased their selectivity towards their most favoured prey types at sites of high wave exposure. This suggests there are costs to foraging under different wave environments that can shape the foraging patterns of butterflyfishes in concert with other conditions such as prey availability, interspecific competition, and territoriality. Given that energy acquisition is crucial to the survival and fitness of fishes, we highlight how such environmental forcing of foraging behaviour may influence the ecological response of species to the ubiquitous and highly variable wave climates of shallow coral reefs.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-04

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

  15. Development of Perennial Grain Sorghum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stan Cox

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Perennial germplasm derived from crosses between Sorghum bicolor and either S. halepense or S. propinquum is being developed with the goal of preventing and reversing soil degradation in the world’s grain sorghum-growing regions. Perennial grain sorghum plants produce subterranean stems known as rhizomes that sprout to form the next season’s crop. In Kansas, breeding perennial sorghum involves crossing S. bicolor cultivars or breeding lines to S. halepense or perennial S. bicolorn × S. halepense breeding lines, selecting perennial plants from F2 or subsequent populations, crossing those plants with S. bicolor, and repeating the cycle. A retrospective field trial in Kansas showed that selection and backcrossing during 2002–2009 had improved grain yields and seed weights of breeding lines. Second-season grain yields of sorghum lines regrowing from rhizomes were similar to yields in the first season. Further selection cycles have been completed since 2009. Many rhizomatous lines that cannot survive winters in Kansas are perennial at subtropical or tropical locations in North America and Africa. Grain yield in Kansas was not correlated with rhizomatousness in either Kansas or Uganda. Genomic regions affecting rhizome growth and development have been mapped, providing new breeding tools. The S. halepense gene pool may harbor many alleles useful for improving sorghum for a broad range of traits in addition to perenniality.

  16. Mercury in San Francisco Bay forage fish

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Greenfield, Ben K., E-mail: ben@sfei.or [San Francisco Estuary Institute, 7770 Pardee Lane, Oakland, CA 94621 (United States); Jahn, Andrew, E-mail: andyjahn@mac.co [1000 Riverside Drive, Ukiah, CA 95482 (United States)

    2010-08-15

    In the San Francisco Estuary, management actions including tidal marsh restoration could change fish mercury (Hg) concentrations. From 2005 to 2007, small forage fish were collected and analyzed to identify spatial and interannual variation in biotic methylmercury (MeHg) exposure. The average whole body total Hg concentration was 0.052 {mu}g g{sup -1} (wet-weight) for 457 composite samples representing 13 fish species. MeHg constituted 94% of total Hg. At a given length, Hg concentrations were higher in nearshore mudflat and wetland species (Clevelandia ios, Menidia audens, and Ilypnus gilberti), compared to species that move offshore (e.g., Atherinops affinis and Lepidogobius lepidus). Gut content analysis indicated similar diets between Atherinops affinis and Menidia audens, when sampled at the same locations. Hg concentrations were higher in sites closest to the Guadalupe River, which drains a watershed impacted by historic Hg mining. Results demonstrate that despite differences among years and fish species, nearshore forage fish exhibit consistent Hg spatial gradients. - Total mercury in estuarine forage fish varies with species, habitat, and proximity to a historic mercury mine.

  17. Mercury in San Francisco Bay forage fish

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greenfield, Ben K.; Jahn, Andrew

    2010-01-01

    In the San Francisco Estuary, management actions including tidal marsh restoration could change fish mercury (Hg) concentrations. From 2005 to 2007, small forage fish were collected and analyzed to identify spatial and interannual variation in biotic methylmercury (MeHg) exposure. The average whole body total Hg concentration was 0.052 μg g -1 (wet-weight) for 457 composite samples representing 13 fish species. MeHg constituted 94% of total Hg. At a given length, Hg concentrations were higher in nearshore mudflat and wetland species (Clevelandia ios, Menidia audens, and Ilypnus gilberti), compared to species that move offshore (e.g., Atherinops affinis and Lepidogobius lepidus). Gut content analysis indicated similar diets between Atherinops affinis and Menidia audens, when sampled at the same locations. Hg concentrations were higher in sites closest to the Guadalupe River, which drains a watershed impacted by historic Hg mining. Results demonstrate that despite differences among years and fish species, nearshore forage fish exhibit consistent Hg spatial gradients. - Total mercury in estuarine forage fish varies with species, habitat, and proximity to a historic mercury mine.

  18. Forage quantity and quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jorgenson, Janet C.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Felix, Nancy A.; Douglas, David C.; Reynolds, Patricia E.; Rhode, E.B.

    2002-01-01

    The Porcupine caribou herd has traditionally used the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, for calving. Availability of nutritious forage has been hypothesized as one of the reasons the Porcupine caribou herd migrates hundreds of kilometers to reach the coastal plain for calving (Kuropat and Bryant 1980, Russell et al. 1993).Forage quantity and quality and the chronology of snowmelt (which determines availability and phenological stages of forage) have been suggested as important habitat attributes that lead calving caribou to select one area over another (Lent 1980, White and Trudell 1980, Eastland et al. 1989). A major question when considering the impact of petroleum development is whether potential displacement of the caribou from the 1002 Area to alternate calving habitat will limit access to high quantity and quality forage.Our study had the following objectives: 1) quantify snowmelt patterns by area; 2) quantify relationships among phenology, biomass, and nutrient content of principal forage species by vegetation type; and 3) determine if traditional concentrated calving areas differ from adjacent areas with lower calving densities in terms of vegetation characteristics.

  19. Differential regulation of the foraging gene associated with task behaviors in harvester ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kleeman Lindsay

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The division of labor in social insect colonies involves transitions by workers from one task to another and is critical to the organization and ecological success of colonies. The differential regulation of genetic pathways is likely to be a key mechanism involved in plasticity of social insect task behavior. One of the few pathways implicated in social organization involves the cGMP-activated protein kinase gene, foraging, a gene associated with foraging behavior in social insect species. The association of the foraging gene with behavior is conserved across diverse species, but the observed expression patterns and proposed functions of this gene vary across taxa. We compared the protein sequence of foraging across social insects and explored whether the differential regulation of this gene is associated with task behaviors in the harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex occidentalis. Results Phylogenetic analysis of the coding region of the foraging gene reveals considerable conservation in protein sequence across insects, particularly among hymenopteran species. The absence of amino acid variation in key active and binding sites suggests that differences in behaviors associated with this gene among species may be the result of changes in gene expression rather than gene divergence. Using real time qPCR analyses with a harvester ant ortholog to foraging (Pofor, we found that the brains of harvester ant foragers have a daily fluctuation in expression of foraging with mRNA levels peaking at midday. In contrast, young workers inside the nest have low levels of Pofor mRNA with no evidence of daily fluctuations in expression. As a result, the association of foraging expression with task behavior within a species changes depending on the time of day the individuals are sampled. Conclusions The amino acid protein sequence of foraging is highly conserved across social insects. Differences in foraging behaviors associated with this gene among

  20. Na and K Levels in forage species from the communal grazing lands during the dry season at some locations in the Northern Region of Ghana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomda, Y.M.; Osae, E.K.; Akaho, E.H.K.; Fianu, F.K.; Karbo, N.

    1999-04-01

    Forage species were taken, during the dry season, from five districts in the Northern Region of Ghana and analysed for Na and K using the Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) technique. The Na level varied in plants species as well as location. The level ranged between 0.049 g/kg DM and 1.14 g/kg DM. This was found to be inadequate for the animals and require supplementation during the dry season. Potassium level in the forage species was between 7.8 to 91.3g/kg DM and appeared to be adequate for the grazing animals. (author)

  1. A transcriptome map of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Studer Bruno

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs are increasingly becoming the DNA marker system of choice due to their prevalence in the genome and their ability to be used in highly multiplexed genotyping assays. Although needed in high numbers for genome-wide marker profiles and genomics-assisted breeding, a surprisingly low number of validated SNPs are currently available for perennial ryegrass. Results A perennial ryegrass unigene set representing 9,399 genes was used as a reference for the assembly of 802,156 high quality reads generated by 454 transcriptome sequencing and for in silico SNP discovery. Out of more than 15,433 SNPs in 1,778 unigenes fulfilling highly stringent assembly and detection parameters, a total of 768 SNP markers were selected for GoldenGate genotyping in 184 individuals of the perennial ryegrass mapping population VrnA, a population being previously evaluated for important agronomic traits. A total of 592 (77% of the SNPs tested were successfully called with a cluster separation above 0.9. Of these, 509 (86% genic SNP markers segregated in the VrnA mapping population, out of which 495 were assigned to map positions. The genetic linkage map presented here comprises a total of 838 DNA markers (767 gene-derived markers and spans 750 centi Mogan (cM with an average marker interval distance of less than 0.9 cM. Moreover, it locates 732 expressed genes involved in a broad range of molecular functions of different biological processes in the perennial ryegrass genome. Conclusions Here, we present an efficient approach of using next generation sequencing (NGS data for SNP discovery, and the successful design of a 768-plex Illumina GoldenGate genotyping assay in a complex genome. The ryegrass SNPs along with the corresponding transcribed sequences represent a milestone in the establishment of genetic and genomics resources available for this species and constitute a further step towards molecular breeding

  2. 7 CFR 457.117 - Forage production crop insurance provisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... INSURANCE CORPORATION, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE COMMON CROP INSURANCE REGULATIONS § 457.117 Forage..., or a mixture thereof, or other species as shown in the Actuarial Documents. Harvest—Removal of forage... different price elections by type, in which case you may select one price election for each forage type...

  3. Individual foraging strategies reveal niche overlap between endangered galapagos pinnipeds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stella Villegas-Amtmann

    Full Text Available Most competition studies between species are conducted from a population-level approach. Few studies have examined inter-specific competition in conjunction with intra-specific competition, with an individual-based approach. To our knowledge, none has been conducted on marine top predators. Sympatric Galapagos fur seals (Arctocephalus galapagoensis and sea lions (Zalophus wollebaeki share similar geographic habitats and potentially compete. We studied their foraging niche overlap at Cabo Douglas, Fernandina Island from simultaneously collected dive and movement data to examine spatial and temporal inter- and intra-specific competition. Sea lions exhibited 3 foraging strategies (shallow, intermediate and deep indicating intra-specific competition. Fur seals exhibited one foraging strategy, diving predominantly at night, between 0-80 m depth and mostly at 19-22 h. Most sea lion dives also occurred at night (63%, between 0-40 m, within fur seals' diving depth range. 34% of sea lions night dives occurred at 19-22 h, when fur seals dived the most, but most of them occurred at dawn and dusk, when fur seals exhibited the least amount of dives. Fur seals and sea lions foraging behavior overlapped at 19 and 21 h between 0-30 m depths. Sea lions from the deep diving strategy exhibited the greatest foraging overlap with fur seals, in time (19 h, depth during overlapping time (21-24 m, and foraging range (37.7%. Fur seals foraging range was larger. Cabo Douglas northwest coastal area, region of highest diving density, is a foraging "hot spot" for both species. Fur seals and sea lions foraging niche overlap occurred, but segregation also occurred; fur seals primarily dived at night, while sea lions exhibited night and day diving. Both species exploited depths and areas exclusive to their species. Niche breadth generally increases with environmental uncertainty and decreased productivity. Potential competition between these species could be greater during

  4. Trace elements in Antarctic fish species and the influence of foraging habitats and dietary habits on mercury levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goutte, Aurélie, E-mail: aurelie.goutte@ephe.sorbonne.fr [École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE), SPL, UPMC Univ Paris 06, UMR 7619 METIS, F-75005, 4 place Jussieu, Paris (France); Cherel, Yves [Centre d' Etudes Biologiques de Chizé, UMR 7372, CNRS-Université de La Rochelle, 79360 Villiers-en-Bois (France); Churlaud, Carine [Littoral Environnement et Sociétés (LIENSs), UMR 7266, CNRS-Université de la Rochelle, 2 rue Olympe de Gouges, 17000 La Rochelle (France); Ponthus, Jean-Pierre [École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE), SPL, UPMC Univ Paris 06, UMR 7619 METIS, F-75005, 4 place Jussieu, Paris (France); Massé, Guillaume [Unité Mixte Internationale Takuvik, Pavillon Alexandre-Vachon, Université Laval, QC, Québec (Canada); Bustamante, Paco [Littoral Environnement et Sociétés (LIENSs), UMR 7266, CNRS-Université de la Rochelle, 2 rue Olympe de Gouges, 17000 La Rochelle (France)

    2015-12-15

    This study aims at describing and interpreting concentration profiles of trace elements in seven Antarctic fish species (N = 132 specimens) off Adélie Land. Ichthyofauna plays a key role in the Antarctic ecosystem, as they occupy various ecological niches, including cryopelagic (ice-associated), pelagic, and benthic habitats. Firstly, trace element levels in the studied specimens were similar to those previously observed in fish from the Southern Ocean. Apart from manganese and zinc, concentrations of arsenic, cadmium, copper, iron, mercury (Hg), nickel, selenium and silver differed among fish species. Muscle δ{sup 13}C and δ{sup 15}N values were determined to investigate whether the fish foraging habitats and dietary habits could explain Hg levels. Species and foraging habitat (δ{sup 13}C) were strong predictors for variations of Hg concentrations in muscle tissues. The highest Hg contamination was found in shallow benthic fish compared to cryopelagic and pelagic fish. This pattern was likely due to the methylation of Hg in the coastal sediment and the photodemethylation by ultraviolet radiation in surface waters. - Highlights: • Trace elements and stable isotopes were analyzed in seven Antarctic fish species. • Levels of trace elements in liver and in muscle differed among species. • Hg load was higher in benthic fish than in cryopelagic and pelagic fish. • These findings could be due to the high methylation rate of Hg in the sediment.

  5. Trace elements in Antarctic fish species and the influence of foraging habitats and dietary habits on mercury levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goutte, Aurélie; Cherel, Yves; Churlaud, Carine; Ponthus, Jean-Pierre; Massé, Guillaume; Bustamante, Paco

    2015-01-01

    This study aims at describing and interpreting concentration profiles of trace elements in seven Antarctic fish species (N = 132 specimens) off Adélie Land. Ichthyofauna plays a key role in the Antarctic ecosystem, as they occupy various ecological niches, including cryopelagic (ice-associated), pelagic, and benthic habitats. Firstly, trace element levels in the studied specimens were similar to those previously observed in fish from the Southern Ocean. Apart from manganese and zinc, concentrations of arsenic, cadmium, copper, iron, mercury (Hg), nickel, selenium and silver differed among fish species. Muscle δ"1"3C and δ"1"5N values were determined to investigate whether the fish foraging habitats and dietary habits could explain Hg levels. Species and foraging habitat (δ"1"3C) were strong predictors for variations of Hg concentrations in muscle tissues. The highest Hg contamination was found in shallow benthic fish compared to cryopelagic and pelagic fish. This pattern was likely due to the methylation of Hg in the coastal sediment and the photodemethylation by ultraviolet radiation in surface waters. - Highlights: • Trace elements and stable isotopes were analyzed in seven Antarctic fish species. • Levels of trace elements in liver and in muscle differed among species. • Hg load was higher in benthic fish than in cryopelagic and pelagic fish. • These findings could be due to the high methylation rate of Hg in the sediment.

  6. Towards an assessment of on-farm niches for improved forages in Sud-Kivu, DR Congo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Birthe K. Paul

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Inadequate quantity and quality of livestock feed is a persistent constraint to productivity for mixed crop-livestock farming in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. To assess on-farm niches of improved forages, demonstration trials and participatory on-farm research were conducted in four different sites. Forage legumes included Canavalia brasiliensis (CIAT 17009, Stylosanthes guianensis (CIAT 11995 and Desmodium uncinatum (cv. Silverleaf, while grasses were Guatemala grass (Tripsacum andersonii, Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum French Cameroon, and a local Napier line. Within the first six months, forage legumes adapted differently to the four sites with little differences among varieties, while forage grasses displayed higher variability in biomass production among varieties than among sites. Farmers’ ranking largely corresponded to herbage yield from the first cut, preferring Canavalia, Silverleaf desmodium and Napier French Cameroon. Choice of forages and integration into farming systems depended on land availability, soil erosion prevalence and livestock husbandry system. In erosion prone sites, 55–60%of farmers planted grasses on field edges and 16–30% as hedgerows for erosion control. 43% of farmers grew forages as intercrop with food crops such as maize and cassava, pointing to land scarcity. Only in the site with lower land pressure, 71% of farmers grew legumes as pure stand. When land tenure was not secured and livestock freely roaming, 75% of farmers preferred to grow annual forage legumes instead of perennial grasses. Future research should develop robust decision support for spatial and temporal integration of forage technologies into diverse smallholder cropping systems and agro-ecologies.

  7. Variation in sequences containing microsatellite motifs in the perennial biomass and forage grass, Phalaris arundinacea (Poaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barth, Susanne; Jankowska, Marta Jolanta; Hodkinson, Trevor Roland; Vellani, Tia; Klaas, Manfred

    2016-03-22

    Forty three microsatellite markers were developed for further genetic characterisation of a forage and biomass grass crop, for which genomic resources are currently scarce. The microsatellite markers were developed from a normalized EST-SSR library. All of the 43 markers gave a clear banding pattern on 3% Metaphor agarose gels. Eight selected SSR markers were tested in detail for polymorphism across eleven DNA samples of large geographic distribution across Europe. The new set of 43 SSR markers will help future research to characterise the genetic structure and diversity of Phalaris arundinacea, with a potential to further understand its invasive character in North American wetlands, as well as aid in breeding work for desired biomass and forage traits. P. arundinacea is particularly valued in the northern latitude as a crop with high biomass potential, even more so on marginal lands.

  8. Na and K Levels in forage species from the communal grazing lands during the dry season at some locations in the Northern Region of Ghana

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gomda, Y M; Osae, E K; Akaho, E H.K. [Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, Accra (Ghana); Fianu, F K [University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, (Ghana); Karbo, N [Animal Research Institute, Nyankpala (Ghana)

    1999-09-01

    Forage species were taken, during the dry season, from five districts in the Northern Region of Ghana and analysed for Na and K using the Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) technique. The Na level varied in plants species as well as location. The level ranged between 0.049 g/kg DM and 1.14 g/kg DM. This was found to be inadequate for the animals and require supplementation during the dry season. Potassium level in the forage species was between 7.8 to 91.3g/kg DM and appeared to be adequate for the grazing animals. (author) Technical report for year ending 1998. 2 tabs.; 18 refs.

  9. Bumble bee nest abundance, foraging distance, and host-plant reproduction: implications for management and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geib, Jennifer C; Strange, James P; Galenj, Candace

    2015-04-01

    Recent reports of global declines in pollinator species imply an urgent need to assess the abundance of native pollinators and density-dependent benefits for linked plants. In this study, we investigated (1) pollinator nest distributions and estimated colony abundances, (2) the relationship between abundances of foraging workers and the number of nests they represent, (3) pollinator foraging ranges, and (4) the relationship between pollinator abundance and plant reproduction. We examined these questions in an alpine ecosystem in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, focusing on four alpine bumble bee species (Bombus balteatus, B. flavifrons, B. bifarius, and B. sylvicola), and two host plants that differ in their degrees of pollinator specialization (Trifolium dasyphyllum and T. parryi). Using microsatellites, we found that estimated colony abundances among Bombus species ranged from ~18 to 78 colonies/0.01 km2. The long-tongued species B. balteatus was most common, especially high above treeline, but the subalpine species B. bifarius was unexpectedly abundant for this elevation range. Nests detected among sampled foragers of each species were correlated with the number of foragers caught. Foraging ranges were smaller than expected for all Bombus species, ranging from 25 to 110 m. Fruit set for the specialized plant, Trifolium parryi, was positively related to the abundance of its Bombus pollinator. In contrast, fruit set for the generalized plant, T. dasyphyllum, was related to abundance of all Bombus species. Because forager abundance was related to nest abundance of each Bombus species and was an equally effective predictor of plant fecundity, forager inventories are probably suitable for assessing the health of outcrossing plant populations. However, nest abundance, rather than forager abundance, better reflects demographic and genetic health in populations of eusocial pollinators such as bumble bees. Development of models incorporating the parameters we have measured

  10. Analysis of DNA methylation of perennial ryegrass under drought using the methylation-sensitive amplification polymorphism (MSAP) technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Xiao-Mei; Tao, Xiang; Wang, Yan; Ma, Dong-Wei; Li, Dan; Yang, Hong; Ma, Xin-Rong

    2014-12-01

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne), an excellent grass for forage and turf, is widespread in temperate regions. Drought is an important factor that limits its growth, distribution, and yield. DNA methylation affects gene expression and plays an important role in adaptation to adverse environments. In this study, the DNA methylation changes in perennial ryegrass under drought stress were assessed using methylation-sensitive amplified polymorphism (MSAP). After 15 days of drought stress treatment, the plant height was less than half of the control, and the leaves were smaller and darker. Genome-wide, a total of 652 CCGG sites were detected by MSAP. The total methylation level was 57.67 and 47.39 % in the control and drought treatment, respectively, indicating a decrease of 10.28 % due to drought exposure. Fifteen differentially displayed DNA fragments in MSAP profiles were cloned for sequencing analysis. The results showed that most of the genes involved in stress responses. The relative expression levels revealed that three demethylated fragments were up-regulated. The expression of a predicted retrotransposon increased significantly, changing from hypermethylation to non-methylation. Although the extent of methylation in two other genes decreased, the sites of methylation remained, and the expression increased only slightly. All of these results suggested that drought stress decreased the total DNA methylation level in perennial ryegrass and demethylation up-regulated related gene expressions and that the extent of methylation was negatively correlated with expression. Overall, the induced epigenetic changes in genome probably are an important regulatory mechanism for acclimating perennial ryegrass to drought and possibly other environmental stresses.

  11. How Do Grass Species, Season and Ensiling Influence Mycotoxin Content in Forage?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Nawrath

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungal species that have harmful effects on mammals. The aim of this study was to assess the content of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material of selected forage grass species both during and at the end of the growing season. We further assessed mycotoxin content in subsequently produced first-cutting silages with respect to the species used in this study: Lolium perenne (cv. Kentaur, Festulolium pabulare (cv. Felina, Festulolium braunii (cv. Perseus, and mixtures of these species with Festuca rubra (cv. Gondolin or Poa pratensis (Slezanka. The mycotoxins deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and T-2 toxin were mainly detected in the fresh-cut grass material, while fumonisin and aflatoxin contents were below the detection limits. July and October were the most risky periods for mycotoxins to occur. During the cold temperatures in November and December, the occurrence of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material declined. Although June was a period with low incidence of mycotoxins in green silage, contents of deoxynivalenol and zearalenone in silages from the first cutting exceeded by several times those determined in their biomass collected directly from the field. Moreover, we observed that use of preservatives or inoculants did not prevent mycotoxin production.

  12. The effect of prey density on foraging mode selection in juvenile lumpfish: balancing food intake with the metabolic cost of foraging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Killen, Shaun S; Brown, Joseph A; Gamperl, A Kurt

    2007-07-01

    1. In many species, individuals will alter their foraging strategy in response to changes in prey density. However, previous work has shown that prey density has differing effects on the foraging mode decisions of ectotherms as compared with endotherms. This is likely due to differences in metabolic demand; however, the relationship between metabolism and foraging mode choice in ectotherms has not been thoroughly studied. 2. Juvenile lumpfish Cyclopterus lumpus forage using one of two modes: they can actively search for prey while swimming, or they can 'sit-and-wait' for prey while clinging to the substrate using a ventral adhesive disk. The presence of these easily distinguishable foraging modes makes juvenile lumpfish ideal for the study of foraging mode choice in ectotherms. 3. Behavioural observations conducted during laboratory experiments showed that juvenile lumpfish predominantly use the 'cling' foraging mode when prey is abundant, but resort to the more costly 'swim' mode to seek out food when prey is scarce. The metabolic cost of active foraging was also quantified for juvenile lumpfish using swim-tunnel respirometry, and a model was devised to predict the prey density at which lumpfish should switch between the swim and cling foraging modes to maximize energy intake. 4. The results of this model do not agree with previous observations of lumpfish behaviour, and thus it appears that juvenile lumpfish do not try to maximize their net energetic gain. Instead, our data suggest that juvenile lumpfish forage in a manner that reduces activity and conserves space in their limited aerobic scope. This behavioural flexibility is of great benefit to this species, as it allows young individuals to divert energy towards growth as opposed to activity. In a broader context, our results support previous speculation that ectotherms often forage in a manner that maintains a minimum prey encounter rate, but does not necessarily maximize net energy gain.

  13. Movement patterns for a critically endangered species, the leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea, linked to foraging success and population status.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Bailey

    Full Text Available Foraging success for pelagic vertebrates may be revealed by horizontal and vertical movement patterns. We show markedly different patterns for leatherback turtles in the North Atlantic versus Eastern Pacific, which feed on gelatinous zooplankton that are only occasionally found in high densities. In the Atlantic, travel speed was characterized by two modes, indicative of high foraging success at low speeds (<15 km d(-1 and transit at high speeds (20-45 km d(-1. Only a single mode was evident in the Pacific, which occurred at speeds of 21 km d(-1 indicative of transit. The mean dive depth was more variable in relation to latitude but closer to the mean annual depth of the thermocline and nutricline for North Atlantic than Eastern Pacific turtles. The most parsimonious explanation for these findings is that Eastern Pacific turtles rarely achieve high foraging success. This is the first support for foraging behaviour differences between populations of this critically endangered species and suggests that longer periods searching for prey may be hindering population recovery in the Pacific while aiding population maintenance in the Atlantic.

  14. N transfer in three species grass-clover mixtures with chicory, ribwort plantain or caraway

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dhamala, Nawa Raj; Rasmussen, Jim; Carlsson, Georg

    2017-01-01

    Background and aimsThere is substantial evidence that legume-derived Nitrogen (N) is transferred to neighboring non-legumes in grassland mixtures. However, there is sparse information about how deep rooted non-legume forage herbs (forbs) influence N transfer in multi-species grasslands. Methodology......Red clover (Trifolium pretense L.) was grown together with perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) and one of three forb species: chicory (Cichorium intybus L.), ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata L.) or caraway (Carum carvi L.) in a field experiment. During the first year after the establishment, red...... clover leaves were labeled with 15N-urea to determine the N transfer from red clover to companion ryegrass and forbs. ResultsOn an annual basis, up to 15 % of red clover N was transferred to the companion ryegrass and forbs, but predominantly to the grass. The forb species did not differ in their ability...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-07-15

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

  16. Mercury bioaccumulation and risk to three waterbird foraging guilds is influenced by foraging ecology and breeding stage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Ackerman, Joshua T.; De La Cruz, Susan E.W.; Takekawa, John Y.

    2009-01-01

    We evaluated mercury (Hg) in five waterbird species representing three foraging guilds in San Francisco Bay, CA. Fish-eating birds (Forster's and Caspian terns) had the highest Hg concentrations in thier tissues, but concentrations in an invertebrate-foraging shorebird (black-necked stilt) were also elevated. Foraging habitat was important for Hg exposure as illustrated by within-guild differences, where species more associated with marshes and salt ponds had higher concentrations than those more associated with open-bay and tidal mudflats. Importantly, Hg concentrations increased with time spent in the estuary. Surf scoter concentrations tripled over six months, whereas Forster's terns showed an up to 5-fold increase between estuary arrival and breeding. Breeding waterbirds were at elevated risk of Hg-induced reproductive impairment, particularly Forster's terns, in which 48% of breeding birds were at high risk due to their Hg levels. Our results highlight the importance of habitat and exposure timing, in addition to trophic position, on waterbird Hg bioaccumulation and risk. - The influence of foraging habitat, trophic position, and exposure timing on mercury bioaccumulation and risk to reproduction is evaluated in three waterbird guilds.

  17. Plant Functional Traits Associated with Mycorrhizal Root Foraging in Arbuscular Mycorrhizal and Ectomycorrhizal Trees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eissenstat, D. M.; Chen, W.; Cheng, L.; Liu, B.; Koide, R. T.; Guo, D.

    2016-12-01

    Root foraging for nutrient "hot spots" is a key strategy by which some plants maximize nutrient gain from their carbon investment in root and mycorrhizal hyphae. Foraging strategies may depend on costs of root construction, with thick roots generally costing more per unit length than thin roots. Investment in mycorrhizal hyphae, which are considerably thinner than roots, may represent an alternative strategy for cost-effective nutrient foraging, especially for thick-root species. Type of mycorrhiza may matter, as ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi are more associated with longer hyphae and ability to mineralize organic matter than arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi. Among AM trees in both subtropical forests in SE China and in temperate forests in central Pennsylvania, USA, we found that tree species with thin roots proliferated their roots in soil patches enriched with mineral nutrients to a greater extent than species with thick roots. In addition, thick-root species were consistently colonized more heavily with mycorrhizal fungi than thin root species, although nutrient addition tended to diminish colonization. In a common garden in central Pennsylvania of both AM and EM tree species, we found that nutrient patches enriched with organic materials resulted in greater root and mycorrhizal fungal proliferation compared to those enriched with inorganic nutrients and that thick-root species proliferated more with their mycorrhizal fungi whereas thin-root species proliferated more with their roots. We further examined with many more species, patterns of root and mycorrhizal fungal proliferation in organic-nutrient-enriched patches. Foraging precision, or the extent that roots or mycorrhizal hyphae grew in the enriched patch relative to the unenriched patch, was related to both root thickness and type of mycorrhiza. In both AM and EM trees, thick-root species were not selective foragers of either their roots or hyphae. In thin-root species, there was strong selectivity in

  18. The Foraging Ecology of the Endangered Cape Verde Shearwater, a Sentinel Species for Marine Conservation off West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paiva, Vitor H; Geraldes, Pedro; Rodrigues, Isabel; Melo, Tommy; Melo, José; Ramos, Jaime A

    2015-01-01

    Large Marine Ecosystems such as the Canary Current system off West Africa sustains high abundance of small pelagic prey, which attracts marine predators. Seabirds are top predators often used as biodiversity surrogates and sentinel species of the marine ecosystem health, thus frequently informing marine conservation planning. This study presents the first data on the spatial (GPS-loggers) and trophic (stable isotope analysis) ecology of a tropical seabird-the endangered Cape Verde shearwater Calonectris edwardsii-during both the incubation and the chick-rearing periods of two consecutive years. This information was related with marine environmental predictors (species distribution models), existent areas of conservation concern for seabirds (i.e. marine Important Bird Areas; marine IBAs) and threats to the marine environment in the West African areas heavily used by the shearwaters. There was an apparent inter-annual consistency on the spatial, foraging and trophic ecology of Cape Verde shearwater, but a strong alteration on the foraging strategies of adult breeders among breeding phases (i.e. from incubation to chick-rearing). During incubation, birds mostly targeted a discrete region off West Africa, known by its enhanced productivity profile and thus also highly exploited by international industrial fishery fleets. When chick-rearing, adults exploited the comparatively less productive tropical environment within the islands of Cape Verde, at relatively close distance from their breeding colony. The species enlarged its trophic niche and increased the trophic level of their prey from incubation to chick-rearing, likely to provision their chicks with a more diversified and better quality diet. There was a high overlap between the Cape Verde shearwaters foraging areas with those of European shearwater species that overwinter in this area and known areas of megafauna bycatch off West Africa, but very little overlap with existing Marine Important Bird Areas. Further

  19. Quantifying the effect of colony size and food distribution on harvester ant foraging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana P Flanagan

    Full Text Available Desert seed-harvester ants, genus Pogonomyrmex, are central place foragers that search for resources collectively. We quantify how seed harvesters exploit the spatial distribution of seeds to improve their rate of seed collection. We find that foraging rates are significantly influenced by the clumpiness of experimental seed baits. Colonies collected seeds from larger piles faster than randomly distributed seeds. We developed a method to compare foraging rates on clumped versus random seeds across three Pogonomyrmex species that differ substantially in forager population size. The increase in foraging rate when food was clumped in larger piles was indistinguishable across the three species, suggesting that species with larger colonies are no better than species with smaller colonies at collecting clumped seeds. These findings contradict the theoretical expectation that larger groups are more efficient at exploiting clumped resources, thus contributing to our understanding of the importance of the spatial distribution of food sources and colony size for communication and organization in social insects.

  20. Composition of Mix Species Foraging Flocks of Birds in Riverstan of Montane Region, Sri Lanka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W.G.D.D.M. Shermila

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Montane zone mixed-species bird flock system is distinct from that of low-land wet zone of SriLanka, although some species are present in both systems. The present study identified the mixed speciesflocks of birds in Riverstan at Knuckles Region, Sri Lanka. Monthly transect counts and opportunisticobservations were made between January and May, 2012. A total of 78 flocks and 27 bird species wereencountered at Riverstan during the study period. The flock size varied between 2 to 13 species and 4 to58 individuals. The mean number of species per flock was 6.03 ± 2.25 and the mean number ofindividuals in a flock was 18.41±9.87. The flock size was positively correlated with the number of speciespresent (r = 0.756, P <0.05. Grey-headed Canary Flycatcher was the most abundant species (mean2.68±1.02 birds per flocks while Sri Lanka White-eye was the most frequent species (mean 5.69±3.92birds per flocks. Grey-headed Canary Flycatcher and Sri Lanka Scimitar-babbler were the nuclear speciesin Riverstan. The leading species were Sri Lanka white-eye and Sri Lanka Yellow-eared Bulbul. Differentbird species used different heights within flocks.Keywords: Mixed-species flock, Nuclear species, Abundance, Foraging flocks

  1. Energy-conserving perennial agriculture for marginal land in southern Appalachia. Final technical report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Williams, G.

    1982-01-30

    USDA economists predict the end of surplus farm production in the US within this decade. More and more marginal land will be cropped to provide feed for the growing world population and to produce energy. Much of this potential cropland in Southern Appalachia is poorly suited to annual crops, such as corn. Perennial crops are much better suited to steep, rocky, and wet sites. Research was undertaken on the theoretical potentials of perennial species with high predicted yields of protein, carbohydrates, or oils. Several candidate staple perennial crops for marginal land in Southern Appalachia were identified, and estimates were made of their yields, energy input requirements, and general suitabilities. Cropping systems incorporating honeylocust, persimmon, mulberry, jujube, and beech were compared with corn cropping systems. It appears that these candidate staple perennials show distinct advantages for energy conservation and environmental preservation. Detailed economic analyses must await actual demonstration trials, but preliminary indications for ethanol conversion systems with honeylocust are encouraging. It is suggested that short-term loans to farmers undertaking this new type of agriculture would be appropriate to solve cash-flow problems.

  2. The regulation of ant colony foraging activity without spatial information.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balaji Prabhakar

    Full Text Available Many dynamical networks, such as the ones that produce the collective behavior of social insects, operate without any central control, instead arising from local interactions among individuals. A well-studied example is the formation of recruitment trails in ant colonies, but many ant species do not use pheromone trails. We present a model of the regulation of foraging by harvester ant (Pogonomyrmex barbatus colonies. This species forages for scattered seeds that one ant can retrieve on its own, so there is no need for spatial information such as pheromone trails that lead ants to specific locations. Previous work shows that colony foraging activity, the rate at which ants go out to search individually for seeds, is regulated in response to current food availability throughout the colony's foraging area. Ants use the rate of brief antennal contacts inside the nest between foragers returning with food and outgoing foragers available to leave the nest on the next foraging trip. Here we present a feedback-based algorithm that captures the main features of data from field experiments in which the rate of returning foragers was manipulated. The algorithm draws on our finding that the distribution of intervals between successive ants returning to the nest is a Poisson process. We fitted the parameter that estimates the effect of each returning forager on the rate at which outgoing foragers leave the nest. We found that correlations between observed rates of returning foragers and simulated rates of outgoing foragers, using our model, were similar to those in the data. Our simple stochastic model shows how the regulation of ant colony foraging can operate without spatial information, describing a process at the level of individual ants that predicts the overall foraging activity of the colony.

  3. Habitat-specific foraging strategies in Australasian gannets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie R. Wells

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge of top predator foraging adaptability is imperative for predicting their biological response to environmental variability. While seabirds have developed highly specialised techniques to locate prey, little is known about intraspecific variation in foraging strategies with many studies deriving information from uniform oceanic environments. Australasian gannets (Morus serrator typically forage in continental shelf regions on small schooling prey. The present study used GPS and video data loggers to compare habitat-specific foraging strategies at two sites of contrasting oceanographic regimes (deep water near the continental shelf edge, n=23; shallow inshore embayment, n=26, in south-eastern Australia. Individuals from the continental shelf site exhibited pelagic foraging behaviours typical of gannet species, using local enhancement to locate and feed on small schooling fish; in contrast only 50% of the individuals from the inshore site foraged offshore, displaying the typical pelagic foraging strategy. The remainder adopted a strategy of searching sand banks in shallow inshore waters in the absence of conspecifics and other predators for large, single prey items. Furthermore, of the individuals foraging inshore, 93% were male, indicating that the inshore strategy may be sex-specific. Large inter-colony differences in Australasian gannets suggest strong plasticity in foraging behaviours, essential for adapting to environmental change.

  4. Food and foraging preferences of three pteropodid bats in southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.R Sudhakaran

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A study on the food, foraging and flight height in three species of pteropodid bats, namely Cynopterus sphinx, Rousettus leschenaultii and Pteropus giganteus was conducted in Tirunelveli and Tuticorin districts of southern Tamil Nadu, India. A total of 37 species of plants were identified as potential food plants of the pteropodid bats. The preference for fruits by pteropodids varied according to the developmental stages of fruits namely, immature, unripe and ripe. There is a relationship between the foraging activities of bats and the moon phase. Bats exhibit a varied foraging pattern and flight height. A variation in the foraging flight height was observed in C. sphinx and R. leschenaultii. R. leschenaultii was observed to have a higher foraging echelon than that of the C. sphinx. In our study we found that the C. sphinx forages normally at canopy level (up to 3.5m, R. leschenaultii forages at upper canopy levels (up to 9m and P. giganteus at a height above the canopy area (>9m.

  5. Forage herbs improve mineral composition of grassland herbage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pirhofer-Walzl, Karin; Søegaard, Karen; Jensen, Henning Høgh

    2011-01-01

    there is limited information about mineral concentrations in forage herbs. To determine whether herbs have greater macro- and micromineral concentrations than forage legumes and grasses, we conducted a 2-year experiment on a loamy-sand site in Denmark sown with a multi-species mixture comprised of three functional...

  6. A global comparison of the nutritive values of forage plants grown in contrasting environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Mark A

    2018-03-17

    Forage plants are valuable because they maintain wild and domesticated herbivores, and sustain the delivery of meat, milk and other commodities. Forage plants contain different quantities of fibre, lignin, minerals and protein, and vary in the proportion of their tissue that can be digested by herbivores. These nutritive components are important determinants of consumer growth rates, reproductive success and behaviour. A dataset was compiled to quantify variation in forage plant nutritive values within- and between-plant species, and to assess variation between plant functional groups and bioclimatic zones. 1255 geo-located records containing 3774 measurements of nutritive values for 136 forage plant species grown in 30 countries were obtained from published articles. Spatial variability in forage nutritive values indicated that climate modified plant nutritive values. Forage plants grown in arid and equatorial regions generally contained less digestible material than those grown in temperate and tundra regions; containing more fibre and lignin, and less protein. These patterns may reveal why herbivore body sizes, digestion and migration strategies are different in warmer and drier regions. This dataset also revealed the capacity for variation in the nutrition provided by forage plants, which may drive consumer species coexistence. The proportion of the plant tissue that was digestible ranged between species from 2 to 91%. The amount of fibre contained within plant material ranged by 23-90%, protein by 2-36%, lignin by 1-21% and minerals by 2-22%. On average, grasses and tree foliage contained the most fibre, whilst herbaceous legumes contained the most protein and tree foliage contained the most lignin. However, there were individual species within each functional group that were highly nutritious. This dataset may be used to identify forage plant species or mixtures of species from different functional groups with useful nutritional traits which can be cultivated

  7. Cultivar effects of perennial ryegrass on herbage intake by grazing dairy cows

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, H.J.

    2006-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass is the most abundant grass species in temperate climates. An increased herbage intake of dairy cows by breeding new cultivars could have a large potential impact on agriculture. The effects of cultivars on sward structure, nutritive value, physical characteristics and disease

  8. Ungulate exclusion, conifer thinning and mule deer forage in northeastern New Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, David W.; Sorensen, Grant E.; Taylor, Chase A.; Cox, Robert D.; Gipson, Philip S.; Cain, James W.

    2015-01-01

    The southwestern United States has experienced expansion of conifer species (Juniperus spp. and Pinus ponderosa) into areas of semi-arid grassland over the past century. The expansion of conifers can limit palatable forage and reduce grass and forb communities. Conifer species are sometimes thinned through hydraulic mulching or selective cutting. We assessed the effects of these treatments on mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) habitat in northeastern New Mexico to determine if conifer thinning improved cover of preferred forage species for mule deer in areas with and without ungulates. We measured plant cover and occurrence of preferred forage species in the summers of 2011 and 2012. An ongoing regional drought probably reduced vegetation response, with preferred forage species and herbaceous cover responding to conifer thinning or ungulate exclusion immediately following treatment, but not the following year. In 2011, areas that received thinning treatments had a higher abundance of preferred forage when compared to sites with no treatment. Grass coverage exhibited an immediate response in 2011, with ungulate exclosures containing 8% more coverage than areas without exclosures. The results suggest that conifer thinning and ungulate exclusion may elicit a positive response, however in the presence of drought; the positive effects are only short-term.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vitalis W. Temu

    2015-05-01

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

  10. Linking root traits to nutrient foraging in arbuscular mycorrhizal trees in a temperate forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eissenstat, David M; Kucharski, Joshua M; Zadworny, Marcin; Adams, Thomas S; Koide, Roger T

    2015-10-01

    The identification of plant functional traits that can be linked to ecosystem processes is of wide interest, especially for predicting vegetational responses to climate change. Root diameter of the finest absorptive roots may be one plant trait that has wide significance. Do species with relatively thick absorptive roots forage in nutrient-rich patches differently from species with relatively fine absorptive roots? We measured traits related to nutrient foraging (root morphology and architecture, root proliferation, and mycorrhizal colonization) across six coexisting arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) temperate tree species with and without nutrient addition. Root traits such as root diameter and specific root length were highly correlated with root branching intensity, with thin-root species having higher branching intensity than thick-root species. In both fertilized and unfertilized soil, species with thin absorptive roots and high branching intensity showed much greater root length and mass proliferation but lower mycorrhizal colonization than species with thick absorptive roots. Across all species, fertilization led to increased root proliferation and reduced mycorrhizal colonization. These results suggest that thin-root species forage more by root proliferation, whereas thick-root species forage more by mycorrhizal fungi. In mineral nutrient-rich patches, AM trees seem to forage more by proliferating roots than by mycorrhizal fungi. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  11. Human disturbance provides foraging opportunities for birds in primary subalpine forest

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    DuBay, Shane G.; Hart Reeve, Andrew; Wu, Yongjie

    2017-01-01

    or Cettia major, and Heteroxenicus stellatus. This behavior is likely a modification of pre-existing interspecific foraging associations with pheasants and large mammals in the region. These larger animals disturb the earth and lower vegetation layers upon passage and while foraging, exposing previously...... opportunities. We cut and cleared small swaths of dense bamboo growth for an unrelated study. Multiple insectivorous species were recruited to the cleared areas, foraging extensively in the disturbed earth, often within 1 m of us. These species included Tarsiger chrysaeus, Tarsiger indicus, Cettia brunnifrons...

  12. Can inter-cultivar variation in caesium and strontium uptake reduce contamination of forage grasses? - Can inter-cultivar variation in caesium and strontium accumulation by forage grasses be used to reduce contamination of cows' milk in radiologically contaminated areas?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Penrose, B. [NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Lancaster Environment Centre, Library Avenue, Lancaster, LA1 4AP (United Kingdom); School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Leicestershire, LE12 5RD (United Kingdom); Beresford, N. [NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Lancaster Environment Centre, Library Avenue, Lancaster, LA1 4AP (United Kingdom); Broadley, M.; Crout, N.M.J.; King, J.; Young, S. [School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Leicestershire, LE12 5RD (United Kingdom); Lovatt, A. [Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth University, Gogerddan, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, SY23 3E E (United Kingdom); Thomson, R. [Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture (SASA), Roddinglaw Road, Edinburgh, EH12 9FJ (United Kingdom)

    2014-07-01

    Radiocaesium and radiostrontium primarily enter the food chain via plant root uptake, including indirectly via animal fodders. Inter-species variation in caesium and strontium accumulation in plants has previously been reported to be over two orders of magnitude. This variation could be exploited to select crops with relatively low uptake to reduce transfer of these radionuclides to consumers in contaminated areas. Exploiting intra-species (i.e. inter-cultivar) variation in caesium and strontium uptake has not yet been evaluated as a remediation strategy as sufficient data have not been available. As cows' milk has been one of the main contributors to human dose following the Chernobyl and Mayak accidents, we have chosen to focus on elucidating the extent and nature of inter-cultivar variation in caesium and strontium uptake in forage grasses. A total of 412 cultivars from four species of forage grass; perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne; 284 cultivars), Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum; 17 cultivars), hybrid ryegrass (Lolium hybridum; 101 cultivars) and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea; 10 cultivars) were sampled from 20 sets of experimental plots in Aberystwyth (Wales, UK) and Edinburgh (Scotland, UK). Fifty-nine cultivars were grown in both locations. At least three replicates of the same cultivar were grown in each set of plots. Vegetation samples from 2208 plots were collected both in spring 2013 (May-June) and summer 2013 (August-September). The samples were oven-dried and milled then analysed for elemental composition using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Stable caesium and strontium were measured as a proxy measurement for radiocaesium and radiostrontium concentrations. Concentrations of chemical analogues of caesium and strontium (potassium and calcium) and a number of other elements were measured. Soil samples from the experimental plots were also collected, dried, milled and analysed using ICP-MS. This paper will present

  13. Visual field shape and foraging ecology in diurnal raptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potier, Simon; Duriez, Olivier; Cunningham, Gregory B; Bonhomme, Vincent; O'Rourke, Colleen; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban; Bonadonna, Francesco

    2018-05-18

    Birds, particularly raptors, are believed to forage primarily using visual cues. However, raptor foraging tactics are highly diverse - from chasing mobile prey to scavenging - which may reflect adaptations of their visual systems. To investigate this, we studied the visual field configuration of 15 species of diurnal Accipitriformes that differ in such tactics, first focusing on the binocular field and blind area by using a single traits approach, and then exploring the shape of the binocular field with morphometric approaches. While the maximum binocular field width did not differ in species of different foraging tactics, the overall shape of their binocular fields did. In particular, raptors chasing terrestrial prey (ground predators) had a more protruding binocular field and a wider blind area above the head than did raptors chasing aerial or aquatic prey and obligate scavengers. Ground predators that forage on mammals from above have a wide but short bill - which increases ingestion rate - and large suborbital ridge to avoid sun glare. This may explain the protruding binocular field and the wide blind area above the head. By contrast, species from the two other groups have long but narrow bills used to pluck, flake or tear food and may need large visual coverage (and reduced suborbital ridges) to increase their foraging efficiency ( e.g. using large visual coverage to follow the escaping prey in three dimensions or detect conspecifics). We propose that binocular field shape is associated with bill and suborbital ridge shape and, ultimately, foraging strategies. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  14. Differential Essential Oil Composition and Morphology between Perennial Satureja species Growing in Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David García-Rellán

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Chemical composition of the essential oils obtained by hydrodistillation from the aerial parts of thirty six samples of perennial Spanish savouries (Satureja montana L., Satureja innota (Pau G. López, Satureja cuneifolia Ten. and Satureja intricata Lange, was investigated by GC and GC-MS. A total of 72 compounds accounting between 98.25-99.55% of the total oil were identified. High content of carvacrol (59.72±1.50% followed by g -terpinene (17.40±1.11% were found in S.montana essential oils. S. cuneifolia yielded an oil rich in camphor (45.04±1.67% and camphene (12.42±1.71% whereas S. innota produces an essential oil with linalool (23.94±7.58% or geraniol (8.62±3.45% according to the locality of collection and S. intricata showed chemical polymorphism with camphor (16.02±1.75%, as the main compound followed with populations with myrcene (8.46±1.46% and populations with g -terpinene (8.22±1.33%. Although the morphological affinity between S. innota, S.cuneifolia and S. intricata could lead to consider the subspecies level, the phytochemical discriminant analysis support the taxonomic classification of Flora Iberica which ranks these taxa into species.

  15. Enhanced invertebrate prey production following estuarine restoration supports foraging for multiple species of juvenile salmonids (Oncorhynchus spp.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Isa; Davis, Melanie; Ellings, Christopher S.; Nakai, Glynnis; Takekawa, John Y.; De La Cruz, Susan

    2018-01-01

    Estuaries provide crucial foraging resources and nursery habitat for threatened populations of anadromous salmon. As such, there has been a global undertaking to restore habitat and tidal processes in modified estuaries. The foraging capacity of these ecosystems to support various species of out-migrating juvenile salmon can be quantified by monitoring benthic, terrestrial, and pelagic invertebrate prey communities. Here, we present notable trends in the availability of invertebrate prey at several sites within a restoring large river delta in Puget Sound, Washington, U.S.A. Three years after the system was returned to tidal influence, we observed substantial additions to amphipod, copepod, and cumacean abundances in newly accessible marsh channels (from 0 to roughly 5,000–75,000 individuals/m2). In the restoration area, terrestrial invertebrate colonization was dependent upon vegetative cover, with dipteran and hymenopteran biomass increasing 3-fold between 1 and 3 years post-restoration. While the overall biodiversity within the restoration area was lower than in the reference marsh, estimated biomass was comparable to or greater than that found within the other study sites. This additional prey biomass likely provided foraging benefits for juvenile Chinook, chum, and coho salmon. Primary physical drivers differed for benthic, terrestrial, and pelagic invertebrates, and these invertebrate communities are expected to respond differentially depending on organic matter exchange and vegetative colonization. Restoring estuaries may take decades to meet certain success criteria, but our study demonstrates rapid enhancements in foraging resources understood to be used for estuary-dependent wildlife.

  16. Dynamics of foraging trails in the Neotropical termite Velocitermes heteropterus (Isoptera: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haifig, Ives; Jost, Christian; Fourcassié, Vincent; Zana, Yossi; Costa-Leonardo, Ana Maria

    2015-09-01

    Foraging behavior in termites varies with the feeding habits of each species but often occurs through the formation of well-defined trails that connect the nest to food sources in species that build structured nests. We studied the formation of foraging trails and the change in caste ratio during foraging in the termite Velocitermes heteropterus. This species is widespread in Cerrado vegetation where it builds epigeal nests and forages in open-air at night. Our aim was to understand the processes involved in the formation of foraging trails, from the exploration of new unmarked areas to the recruitment of individuals to food and the stabilization of traffic on the trails, as well as the participation of the different castes during these processes. Foraging trails were videotaped in the laboratory and the videos were then analyzed both manually and automatically to assess the flow of individuals and the caste ratio on the trails as well as to examine the spatial organization of traffic over time. Foraging trails were composed of minor workers, major workers, and soldiers. The flow of individuals on the trails gradually increased from the beginning of the exploration of new areas up to the discovery of the food. The caste ratio remained constant throughout the foraging excursion: major workers, minor workers and soldiers forage in a ratio of 8:1:1, respectively. The speed of individuals was significantly different among castes, with major workers and soldiers being significantly faster than minor workers. Overall, our results show that foraging excursions in V. heteropterus may be divided in three different phases, characterized by individual speeds, differential flows and lane segregation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Nitrogen and carbohydrate fractions in exclusive Tifton 85 and in pasture oversown with annual winter forage species - 10.4025/actascianimsci.v34i1.11428

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Claudia Ruggieri

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The experiment was undertaken at the Faculty of Agrarian and Veterinary Sciences (FCAV Jaboticabal, São Paulo State, Brazil, during winter-spring-summer of 2001-2002, to determine the fractionation of nitrogen and carbohydrates in Tifton 85 (Cynodon dactylon Vanderyst x Cynodon nlemfuensis (L. Pers, exclusively or oversown with winter annual forage species. Treatments comprised bristle oat (Avena strigosa Schreb, yellow oat (Avena byzantina C. Koch, triticale (X Triticosecale Wittmack, bristle oat + yellow oat, bristle oat + triticale, yellow oat + triticale, bristle oat + yellow oat + triticale seeded in Tifton 85 and sole crop (control. Experimental design was composed of completely randomized blocks with three replications. Fodder was cut 20 cm high (presence of winter forage and 10 cm high (Tifton 85 pasture. Crude protein, total carbohydrate and the fractions of nitrogen compounds and carbohydrates were determined. Decrease was reported in the levels of chemical compounds in winter forage species and in Tifton 85 during the evaluation periods. The content of nitrogen compounds and carbohydrates varied widely during the evaluation period according to the morphological characteristics of grass species and botanical composition of pastures.

  18. Foraging Behavior of Odontomachus bauri on Barro Colorado Island, Panama

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Birgit Ehmer

    1995-01-01

    Full Text Available Foraging behavior and partitioning of foraging areas of Odonomachus bauri were investigated on Barro Colorado Island in Panama. The activity of the ants did not show any daily pattern; foragers were active day and night. The type of prey captured by O. bauri supports the idea that in higher Odontomachus and Anochetus species, the high speed of mandible closure serves more for generating power than capturing elusive prey. Polydomous nests may enable O. bauri colonies to enlarge their foraging areas.

  19. Investigating the Sustainability of Perennial Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutherlin, C. E.; Brunsell, N. A.; De Oliveira, G.; Crews, T.; Vico, G.

    2017-12-01

    The changing climate leads to uncertainties concerning the sustainability of certain agricultural resources, and with the additional stresses of an increasing global population, uncertainty in food security will greatly increase. To adhere to future food demands in the face of this changing climate, perennial agriculture has been a proposed solution. However, it is equally important to assure that perennial agriculture is not negatively affecting the climate in exchange for this proposed more robust food source. We chose to examine the interactions between perennial and annual agricultural crops by focusing on the efficiency of exchanges with the atmosphere. This is done using the omega decoupling factor for 4 different sites as a way of quantifying the contributions of radiation and stomatal conductance over the resulting water and carbon cycles. This gives us an indication of how the plant canopy is interacting with, and influencing the local microclimate. Ultimately, this should give us an indication of the ability of perennial crops to aid in the climate mitigation process. We hypothesized that the perennial site chosen would have omega values more similar to the omega values of a natural grassland rather than an annual crop site. Using AmeriFlux towers to determine the canopy values needed to calculate the omega decoupling factor, we focused on the Kernza perennial crops being grown at the Land Institute in Salina, Kansas (KLS), in comparison to a natural grassland in Manhattan, Kansas (KON), a typical land cover model in Lawrence, Kansas (KFS), and an annual crop site in Lamont, Oklahoma (ARM). These results will allow us to move forward in the investigation of perennial crops as a sustainable food source.

  20. Foraging behaviour and feeding ecology of the Black-cheeked ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Foraging behaviour and feeding ecology of the Black-cheeked Lovebird Agapornis nigrigenis were studied in Zambia. The birds fed on at least 39 species, and food items included seeds, leaves, flowers (especially nectar), fruit pulp, invertebrates, bark, lichen and resin. Terrestrial foraging was dominant, whereas arboreal ...

  1. The Foraging Ecology of the Endangered Cape Verde Shearwater, a Sentinel Species for Marine Conservation off West Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vitor H Paiva

    Full Text Available Large Marine Ecosystems such as the Canary Current system off West Africa sustains high abundance of small pelagic prey, which attracts marine predators. Seabirds are top predators often used as biodiversity surrogates and sentinel species of the marine ecosystem health, thus frequently informing marine conservation planning. This study presents the first data on the spatial (GPS-loggers and trophic (stable isotope analysis ecology of a tropical seabird-the endangered Cape Verde shearwater Calonectris edwardsii-during both the incubation and the chick-rearing periods of two consecutive years. This information was related with marine environmental predictors (species distribution models, existent areas of conservation concern for seabirds (i.e. marine Important Bird Areas; marine IBAs and threats to the marine environment in the West African areas heavily used by the shearwaters. There was an apparent inter-annual consistency on the spatial, foraging and trophic ecology of Cape Verde shearwater, but a strong alteration on the foraging strategies of adult breeders among breeding phases (i.e. from incubation to chick-rearing. During incubation, birds mostly targeted a discrete region off West Africa, known by its enhanced productivity profile and thus also highly exploited by international industrial fishery fleets. When chick-rearing, adults exploited the comparatively less productive tropical environment within the islands of Cape Verde, at relatively close distance from their breeding colony. The species enlarged its trophic niche and increased the trophic level of their prey from incubation to chick-rearing, likely to provision their chicks with a more diversified and better quality diet. There was a high overlap between the Cape Verde shearwaters foraging areas with those of European shearwater species that overwinter in this area and known areas of megafauna bycatch off West Africa, but very little overlap with existing Marine Important Bird

  2. Perennial forbs for wildlife habitat restoration on mined lands in the northern Great Plains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardell J. Bjugstad; Warren C. Whitman

    1982-01-01

    Research was designed to assess the establishment and growth potential of 30 perennial forbs by seeding and/or transplanting them on coal mine spoil materials over a 2-year period. Five species showed exceptional emergence and vigorous growth from direct seeding. Six species showed vigorous growth with the use of transplanted plants. Seeding resulted in successful...

  3. The ecological economics of kleptoparasitism: pay-offs from self-foraging versus kleptoparasitism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flower, Tom P; Child, Matthew F; Ridley, Amanda R

    2013-01-01

    Animals commonly steal food from other species, termed interspecific kleptoparasitism, but why animals engage in kleptoparasitism compared with alternate foraging tactics, and under what circumstances they do so, is not fully understood. Determining what specific benefits animals gain from kleptoparasitism could provide valuable insight into its evolution. Here, we investigate the benefits of kleptoparasitism for a population of individually recognizable and free-living fork-tailed drongos (Dicrurus adsimilis) in the southern Kalahari Desert. Drongos engaged in two foraging behaviours: self-foraging for small insects or following other species which they kleptoparasitized for larger terrestrial prey that they could not capture themselves. Kleptoparasitism consequently enabled drongos to exploit a new foraging niche. Kleptoparasitism benefitted drongos most in the morning and on colder days because at these times pay-offs from kleptoparasitism remained stable, while those from self-foraging declined. However, drongos engaged in kleptoparasitism less than expected given the overall high (but more variable) pay-offs from this behaviour, suggesting that kleptoparasitism is a risky foraging tactic and may incur additional foraging costs compared with self-foraging. This is the first study to comprehensively investigate the benefits of facultatively engaging in kleptoparasitism, demonstrating that animals may switch to kleptoparasitism to exploit a new foraging niche when pay-offs exceed those from alternate foraging behaviours. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2012 British Ecological Society.

  4. Genomics: a potential panacea for the perennial problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClure, Kendra A; Sawler, Jason; Gardner, Kyle M; Money, Daniel; Myles, Sean

    2014-10-01

    Perennial crops represent important fresh and processed food sources worldwide, but advancements in breeding perennials are often impeded due to their very nature. The perennial crops we rely on most for food take several years to reach production maturity and require large spaces to grow, which make breeding new cultivars costly compared with most annual crops. Because breeding perennials is inefficient and expensive, they are often grown in monocultures consisting of small numbers of elite cultivars that are vegetatively propagated for decades or even centuries. This practice puts many perennial crops at risk for calamity since they remain stationary in the face of evolving pest and disease pressures. Although there is tremendous genetic diversity available to them, perennial crop breeders often struggle to generate commercially successful cultivars in a timely and cost-effective manner because of the high costs of breeding. Moreover, consumers often expect the same cultivars to be available indefinitely, and there is often little or no incentive for growers and retailers to take the risk of adopting new cultivars. While genomics studies linking DNA variants to commercially important traits have been performed in diverse perennial crops, the translation of these studies into accelerated breeding of improved cultivars has been limited. Here we explain the "perennial problem" in detail and demonstrate how modern genomics tools can significantly improve the cost effectiveness of breeding perennial crops and thereby prevent crucial food sources from succumbing to the perils of perpetual propagation. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  5. Behavioural environments and niche construction: the evolution of dim-light foraging in bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wcislo, William T; Tierney, Simon M

    2009-02-01

    Most bees forage for floral resources during the day, but temporal patterns of foraging activity vary extensively, and foraging in dim-light environments has evolved repeatedly. Facultative dim-light foraging behaviour is known in five of nine families of bees, while obligate behaviour is known in four families and evolved independently at least 19 times. The light intensity under which bees forage varies by a factor of 10(8), and therefore the evolution of dim-light foraging represents the invasion of a new, extreme niche. The repeated evolution of dim-light foraging behaviour in bees allows tests of the hypothesis that behaviour acts as an evolutionary pacemaker. With the exception of one species of Apis, facultative dim-light foragers show no external structural traits that are thought to enable visually mediated flight behaviour in low-light environments. By contrast, most obligate dim-light foragers show a suite of convergent optical traits such as enlarged ocelli and compound eyes. In one intensively studied species (Megalopta genalis) these optical changes are associated with neurobiological changes to enhance photon capture. The available ecological evidence suggests that an escape from competition for pollen and nectar resources and avoidance of natural enemies are driving factors in the evolution of obligate dim-light foraging.

  6. Dna c-values of 20 invasive alien species and 3 native species in south china

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gong Ni

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Cultivated fields and forests in South China are experiencing serious damage due to invasive alien plants. We investigated the relation between DNA C-values and invasiveness. The DNA C-values of 23 species ranged from 0.39 pg to 3.37 pg. Herbs, perennials and native species had higher mean DNA C-values than shrubs, annuals and invasive alien species. DNA C-values decreased with increasing invasiveness. Paederia scandens, a harmful native species, has the lowest DNA C-value among the perennials, indicating that native species with low nuclear content may also possess an invasive potential.

  7. Vision and touch in relation to foraging and predator detection : insightful contrasts between a plover and a sandpiper

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martin, Graham R.; Piersma, Theunis

    2009-01-01

    Visual fields were determined in two species of shorebirds (Charadriiformes) whose foraging is guided primarily by different sources of information: red knots (Calidris canutus, tactile foragers) and European golden plovers (Pluvialis apricaria, visual foragers). The visual fields of both species

  8. Quantitative Trait Locus (QTL meta-analysis and comparative genomics for candidate gene prediction in perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinozuka Hiroshi

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In crop species, QTL analysis is commonly used for identification of factors contributing to variation of agronomically important traits. As an important pasture species, a large number of QTLs have been reported for perennial ryegrass based on analysis of biparental mapping populations. Further characterisation of those QTLs is, however, essential for utilisation in varietal improvement programs. Results A bibliographic survey of perennial ryegrass trait-dissection studies identified a total of 560 QTLs from previously published papers, of which 189, 270 and 101 were classified as morphology-, physiology- and resistance/tolerance-related loci, respectively. The collected dataset permitted a subsequent meta-QTL study and implementation of a cross-species candidate gene identification approach. A meta-QTL analysis based on use of the BioMercator software was performed to identify two consensus regions for pathogen resistance traits. Genes that are candidates for causal polymorphism underpinning perennial ryegrass QTLs were identified through in silico comparative mapping using rice databases, and 7 genes were assigned to the p150/112 reference map. Markers linked to the LpDGL1, LpPh1 and LpPIPK1 genes were located close to plant size, leaf extension time and heading date-related QTLs, respectively, suggesting that these genes may be functionally associated with important agronomic traits in perennial ryegrass. Conclusions Functional markers are valuable for QTL meta-analysis and comparative genomics. Enrichment of such genetic markers may permit further detailed characterisation of QTLs. The outcomes of QTL meta-analysis and comparative genomics studies may be useful for accelerated development of novel perennial ryegrass cultivars with desirable traits.

  9. TrMADS3, a new MADS-box gene, from a perennial species Taihangia rupestris (Rosaceae) is upregulated by cold and experiences seasonal fluctuation in expression level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Xiaoqiu; Xiao, Qiying; Zhao, Ran; Wu, Feng; Xu, Qijiang; Chong, Kang; Meng, Zheng

    2008-06-01

    In many temperate perennial plants, floral transition is initiated in the first growth season but the development of flower is arrested during the winter to ensure production of mature flowers in the next spring. The molecular mechanisms of the process remain poorly understood with few well-characterized regulatory genes. Here, a MADS-box gene, named as TrMADS3, was isolated from the overwintering inflorescences of Taihangia rupestris, a temperate perennial in the rose family. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that TrMADS3 is more closely related to the homologs of the FLOWERING LOCUS C lineage than to any of the other MIKC-type MADS-box lineages known from Arabidopsis. The TrMADS3 transcripts are extensively distributed in inflorescences, roots, and leaves during the winter. In controlled conditions, the TrMADS3 expression level is upregulated by a chilling exposure for 1 to 2 weeks and remains high for a longer period of time in warm conditions after cold treatment. In situ hybridization reveals that TrMADS3 is predominantly expressed in the vegetative and reproductive meristems. Ectopic expression of TrMADS3 in Arabidopsis promotes seed germination on the media containing relatively high NaCl or mannitol concentrations. These data indicate that TrMADS3 in a perennial species might have its role in both vegetative and reproductive meristems in response to cold.

  10. Semeadura direta de forrageiras de estação fria em campo natural com aplicação de herbicidas: I. Produção de forragem e contribuição relativa das espécies No-till seeding of cool season forages on native pasture with herbicides application: I. Forage yield and relative contribution of plant species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Pérez Gomar

    2004-06-01

    conducted during four years on a fine-loamy, mixed, active Mollic Hapludalf, sandy A horizon, in northern Uruguay. The experimental design was split-splitplot on randomized blocks, with types and dosis of herbicides (gliphosate 1L ha-1, gliphosate 4L ha-1, paraquat 3L ha-1, and a check without herbicides as main treatments, applied in 1994. The application or not of the same treatments in 1995 constituted the splitplots, and their reapplication or not in 1996 constituted the split-splitplots.The results showed that the greatest disturbance on the botanical composition of the native grassland was caused with the application of the higher systemic herbicide dose every year. When herbicides were not applied, there were eleven species present, but with 4L ha-1 of glifosate every year there were only six species, as well as a substitution of perennial species by annual ones. The use of paraquat and the lower gliphosate dose showed intermediate effects between the native grassland without applied herbicides, and the treatment with the higher gliphosate dose. On the other hand, dry matter yield of the introduced winter forage species was 63% greater in the higher gliphosate dose than in the treatment without herbicide application, due to greater control of the competition by the native grasses.

  11. Distribution and abundance of bee forage flora across an agricultural landscape – railway embankments vs. road verges

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    Małgorzata Wrzesień

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we evaluated if railway embankments and road verges create refuge habitats for bee flora across agricultural landscape. The survey was conducted in 2009–2012, in the Lublin Province, SE Poland. Data on the bee forage flora were obtained while making floristic charts along 60 transect plots × 300 m, with a total length of 18 000 m, for each type of linear structure. Forage bee flora was compared with respect to species richness, diversity, and evenness indices. The canonical correspondence analysis (CCA was used to characterize relationship between species composition and environmental variables. The bee forage species richness and abundance were significantly greater on railway embankments than on road verges. The composition of species varied considerably; the number of bee forage species common to both habitats was only approximately 38% in entire data set. Most good-value bee forage species were recorded along the embankments of railways with an intermediate traffic volume. Bee forage species diversity benefits from the location of habitat elements (forests or meadows, primarily if the distance is <50 m. The lack of dense patches of valuable bee forage species in the road verges was related to the high density of non-nectariferous graminoids. Our results demonstrate how the value of man-made areas in an agricultural ecosystem can vary with respect to floral resources across the landscape, suggesting that it is inappropriate to generalize about agricultural systems as a whole without first addressing differences among habitats.

  12. Methane Production of Different Forages in Ruminal Fermentation

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    S. J. Meale

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available An in vitro rumen batch culture study was completed to compare effects of common grasses, leguminous shrubs and non-leguminous shrubs used for livestock grazing in Australia and Ghana on CH4 production and fermentation characteristics. Grass species included Andropodon gayanus, Brachiaria ruziziensis and Pennisetum purpureum. Leguminous shrub species included Cajanus cajan, Cratylia argentea, Gliricidia sepium, Leucaena leucocephala and Stylosanthes guianensis and non-leguminous shrub species included Annona senegalensis, Moringa oleifera, Securinega virosa and Vitellaria paradoxa. Leaves were harvested, dried at 55°C and ground through a 1 mm screen. Serum bottles containing 500 mg of forage, modified McDougall’s buffer and rumen fluid were incubated under anaerobic conditions at 39°C for 24 h. Samples of each forage type were removed after 0, 2, 6, 12 and 24 h of incubation for determination of cumulative gas production. Methane production, ammonia concentration and proportions of VFA were measured at 24 h. Concentration of aNDF (g/kg DM ranged from 671 to 713 (grasses, 377 to 590 (leguminous shrubs and 288 to 517 (non-leguminous shrubs. After 24 h of in vitro incubation, cumulative gas, CH4 production, ammonia concentration, proportion of propionate in VFA and IVDMD differed (p<0.05 within each forage type. B. ruziziensis and G. sepium produced the highest cumulative gas, IVDMD, total VFA, proportion of propionate in VFA and the lowest A:P ratios within their forage types. Consequently, these two species produced moderate CH4 emissions without compromising digestion. Grazing of these two species may be a strategy to reduce CH4 emissions however further assessment in in vivo trials and at different stages of maturity is recommended.

  13. Invasive species in ass. Trifolio-Agrostietum stoloniferae Marković 1973 in Bačka (Serbia

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    Džigurski Dejana M.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In the vegetation of meadows and pastures, due to climate changes and an inadequate and intensive use of hydromeliorative measures, invasive species play a significant role in the degradation of biodiversity. Secondary development of ass. Trifolio-Agrostietum stoloniferae Marković 1973 stands was observed in Bačka, in periodically flooded pastures. Floristic composition of these stands consists of 117 plant species, of which 94 grow in the Danube riverbank region and 97 around the Tisa river. According to the floristic analysis, Ambrosia artemisiifolia, Bellis perennis, Carduus nutans, Cirsium arvense, Eupatorium cannabinum, Linaria vulgaris, Lotus corniculatus, Lythrum salicaria, Rumex crispus, and Trifolium repens are characterized as invasive plants of the European region. Moreover, Ambrosia artemisiifolia, Eleusine indica and Xanthium spinosum, included in the List of invasive species in AP Vojvodina, are also present. Lythrum salicaria is regarded as one of the 100 most dangerous invasive alien species in the world. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. TR-31016: Improvement of Forage Crops Production on Fields and Grasslands

  14. Estabelecimento de gramíneas forrageiras tropicais perenes simultaneamente com as culturas de milho e soja no Norte do RS Perennial tropical forage grasses establishment simultaneously with soybean and maize in northern of RS state, Brazil

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    Franciele Mariani

    2012-08-01

    ça' single pasture was higher than the others, with average accumulation of 6.515 and 5.778kg ha-1, respectively. Intercropped with maize the average accumulation of dry matter was 2.380kg ha-1, without significant differences between species, but with the greatest accumulation occurred in soybeans for 'Marandu' (3.040kg ha-1. There was no decrease in soybean and maize yield in presence of forages, but for mechanical harvesting of soybean further investigation will be required. The intercropping between maize and tropical perennial forages is a viable alternative to the northern of RS.

  15. A feasibility study of perennial/annual plant species to restore soils contaminated with heavy metals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacarías, Montserrat; Beltrán, Margarita; Gilberto Torres, Luis; González, Abelardo

    A feasibility study was carried out to evaluate the application of perennial/annual plant species in a phytoextraction process of a previously washed industrial urban soil contaminated by nickel, arsenic and cupper. The plant species selected for this study were Ipomea (Ipomea variada); grass (Poa pratensis); grass mixture (Festuca rubra, Cynodon dactylon, Lolium multiforum, Pennisetum sp.); Monks Cress (Tropaeolum majus); ficus (Ficus benajamina) and fern (Pteris cretica). Soil was characterized and it presented the following heavy metals concentrations (dry weight): 80 mg of Ni/kg, 456-656 mg of As/kg and 1684-3166 mg of Cu/kg. Germination and survival in contaminated soil tests were conducted, from these, P. pratensis was discarded and the rest of plant species tested were used for the phytoextraction selection test. After 4 months of growth, biomass production was determined, and content of Ni, As and Cu was analyzed in plant’s tissue. Metal biological absorption coefficient (BAC), bio-concentration factor (BCF) and translocation factor (TF), were calculated. Regarding to biomass generation it was observed, in every case, an inhibition of the plant growth compared with blanks sown in a non contaminated soil; inhibition ranged from 22.5% for the Monk cress to 98% for Ipomea. Even though the later presented high BAC, BCF and TF, its growth was severely inhibited, and therefore, due its low biomass generation, it is not recommended for phytoextraction under conditions for this study. Heavy metals concentrations in plant’s tissue (dry weight) were as high as 866 mg Cu/kg and 602 mg As/kg for grass mixture; and 825 mg As/kg was observed for Monks cress. Grass mixture and monks cress had high BAC, BCF and TF, also they had high metal concentrations in its plants tissues and the lowest growth inhibition rates; hence the application in phytoextraction processes of these plants is advisable.

  16. Field margins, foraging distances and their impacts on nesting pollinator success.

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    Sean A Rands

    Full Text Available The areas of wild land around the edges of agricultural fields are a vital resource for many species. These include insect pollinators, to whom field margins provide both nest sites and important resources (especially when adjacent crops are not in flower. Nesting pollinators travel relatively short distances from the nest to forage: most species of bee are known to travel less than two kilometres away. In order to ensure that these pollinators have sufficient areas of wild land within reach of their nests, agricultural landscapes need to be designed to accommodate the limited travelling distances of nesting pollinators. We used a spatially-explicit modelling approach to consider whether increasing the width of wild strips of land within the agricultural landscape will enhance the amount of wild resources available to a nesting pollinator, and if it would impact differently on pollinators with differing foraging strategies. This was done both by creating field structures with a randomised geography, and by using landscape data based upon the British agricultural landscape. These models demonstrate that enhancing field margins should lead to an increase in the availability of forage to pollinators that nest within the landscape. With the exception of species that only forage within a very short range of their nest (less than 125 m, a given amount of field margin manipulation should enhance the proportion of land available to a pollinator for foraging regardless of the distance over which it normally travels to find food. A fixed amount of field edge manipulation should therefore be equally beneficial for both longer-distance nesting foragers such as honeybees, and short-distance foragers such as solitary bees.

  17. Whose urban forest? The political ecology of foraging urban nontimber forest products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patrick T. Hurley; Marla R. Emery; Rebecca McLain; Melissa Poe; Brian Grabbatin; Cari L. Goetcheus

    2015-01-01

    Drawing on case studies of foraging in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, we point to foraging landscapes and practices within diverse urban forest spaces. We examine these spaces in relation to U.S. conservation and development processes and the effects of management and governance on species valued by foragers. These case studies reveal the...

  18. Foraging plasticity by a keystone excavator, the white-headed woodpecker, in managed forests: Are there consequences for productivity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teresa J. Lorenz; Kerri T. Vierling; Jeffrey M. Kozma; Janet E. Millard

    2016-01-01

    Information on the foraging ecology of animals is important for conservation and management, particularly for keystone species whose presence affects ecosystem health. We examined foraging by an at-risk cavity excavator, the white-headed woodpecker (Picoides albolarvatus). The foraging needs of this species are used to inform management of...

  19. Latitudinal range influences the seasonal variation in the foraging behavior of marine top predators.

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    Stella Villegas-Amtmann

    Full Text Available Non-migratory resident species should be capable of modifying their foraging behavior to accommodate changes in prey abundance and availability associated with a changing environment. Populations that are better adapted to change will have higher foraging success and greater potential for survival in the face of climate change. We studied two species of resident central place foragers from temperate and equatorial regions with differing population trends and prey availability associated to season, the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus (CSL whose population is increasing and the endangered Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki (GSL whose population is declining. To determine their response to environmental change, we studied and compared their diving behavior using time-depth recorders and satellite location tags and their diet by measuring C and N isotope ratios during a warm and a cold season. Based on latitudinal differences in oceanographic productivity, we hypothesized that the seasonal variation in foraging behavior would differ for these two species. CSL exhibited greater seasonal variability in their foraging behavior as seen in changes to their diving behavior, foraging areas and diet between seasons. Conversely, GSL did not change their diving behavior between seasons, presenting three foraging strategies (shallow, deep and bottom divers during both. GSL exhibited greater dive and foraging effort than CSL. We suggest that during the warm and less productive season a greater range of foraging behaviors in CSL was associated with greater competition for prey, which relaxed during the cold season when resource availability was greater. GSL foraging specialization suggests that resources are limited throughout the year due to lower primary production and lower seasonal variation in productivity compared to CSL. These latitudinal differences influence their foraging success, pup survival and population growth reflected in

  20. Effect of season on the quality of forages selected by sheep in citrus plantations in Ghana

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    Leonard K. Adjorlolo

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The study aimed at assessing the effects of season on chemical composition of forages selected by sheep grazing in a citrus plantation. Forage species growing in a sweet orange (Citrus sinensis plantation were identified and sampled monthly for 2 years. Samples were bulked on monthly basis for chemical analysis. The average dry matter content of the forages increased from the rainy to the dry season but effects of season on the chemical components were inconsistent. Some species, such as Asystasia gangetica, had a higher crude protein concentration in the dry season, whereas for others, such as Panicum repens, the reverse occurred. However, average concentrations of crude protein, detergent fiber and components of fiber for all species for the rainy season were not significantly different from the dry season values. It was concluded that there were differences among forage species in their responses to changing seasons, such that grazing ruminants may select a diet to enable them to meet their nutritional requirements, provided forage biomass is adequate.Keywords: Crop-livestock integration, tree plantations, chemical composition, seasonal effects, forage quality.DOI: 10.17138/TGFT(2271-277

  1. Bat guilds, a concept to classify the highly diverse foraging and echolocation behaviors of microchiropteran bats

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    Annette eDenzinger

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Throughout evolution the foraging and echolocation behaviors as well as the motor systems of bats have been adapted to the tasks they have to perform while searching and acquiring food. When bats exploit the same class of environmental resources in a similar way, they perform comparable tasks and thus share similar adaptations independent of their phylogeny. Species with similar adaptations are assigned to guilds or functional groups. Habitat type and foraging mode mainly determine the foraging tasks and thus the adaptations of bats. Therefore we use habitat type and foraging mode to define seven guilds. The habitat types open, edge and narrow space are defined according to the bats’ echolocation behavior in relation to the distance between bat and background or food item and background. Bats foraging in the aerial, trawling, flutter detecting, or active gleaning mode use only echolocation to acquire their food. When foraging in the passive gleaning mode bats do not use echolocation but rely on sensory cues from the food item to find it. Bat communities often comprise large numbers of species with a high diversity in foraging areas, foraging modes, and diets. The assignment of species living under similar constraints into guilds identifies pattern of community structure and helps to understand the factors that underlie the organization of highly diverse bat communities. Bat species from different guilds do not compete for food as they differ in their foraging behavior and in the environmental resources they use. However, sympatric living species belonging to the same guild often exploit the same class of resources. To avoid competition they should differ in their niche dimensions. The fine grain structure of bat communities below the rather coarse classification into guilds is determined by mechanisms that result in niche partitioning.

  2. Resource diversity and landscape-level homogeneity drive native bee foraging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jha, Shalene; Kremen, Claire

    2013-01-08

    Given widespread declines in pollinator communities and increasing global reliance on pollinator-dependent crops, there is an acute need to develop a mechanistic understanding of native pollinator population and foraging biology. Using a population genetics approach, we determine the impact of habitat and floral resource distributions on nesting and foraging patterns of a critical native pollinator, Bombus vosnesenskii. Our findings demonstrate that native bee foraging is far more plastic and extensive than previously believed and does not follow a simple optimal foraging strategy. Rather, bumble bees forage further in pursuit of species-rich floral patches and in landscapes where patch-to-patch variation in floral resources is less, regardless of habitat composition. Thus, our results reveal extreme foraging plasticity and demonstrate that floral diversity, not density, drives bee foraging distance. Furthermore, we find a negative impact of paved habitat and a positive impact of natural woodland on bumble bee nesting densities. Overall, this study reveals that natural and human-altered landscapes can be managed for increased native bee nesting and extended foraging, dually enhancing biodiversity and the spatial extent of pollination services.

  3. Expressed sequence tag-derived microsatellite markers of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Studer, Bruno; Asp, Torben; Frei, Ursula

    2008-01-01

    An expressed sequence tag (EST) library of the key grassland species perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) has been exploited as a resource for microsatellite marker development. Out of 955 simple sequence repeat (SSR) containing ESTs, 744 were used for primer design. Primer amplification was te...

  4. Is Bumblebee Foraging Efficiency Mediated by Morphological Correspondence to Flowers?

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    Ikumi Dohzono

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Preference for certain types of flowers in bee species may be an adaptation for efficient foraging, and they often prefer flowers whose shape fits their mouthparts. However, it is unclear whether such flowers are truly beneficial for them. We address this issue by experimentally measuring foraging efficiency of bumblebees, the volume of sucrose solution consumed over handling time (μL/second, using long-tongued Bombus diversus Smith and short-tongued B. honshuensis Tkalcu that visit Clematis stans Siebold et Zuccarini. The corolla tube length of C. stans decreases during a flowering period, and male flowers are longer than female flowers. Long- and short-tongued bumblebees frequently visited longer and shorter flowers, respectively. Based on these preferences, we hypothesized that bumblebee foraging efficiency is higher when visiting flowers that show a good morphological fit between the proboscis and the corolla tube. Foraging efficiency of bumblebees was estimated using flowers for which nectar quality and quantity were controlled, in an experimental enclosure. We show that 1 the foraging efficiency of B. diversus was enhanced when visiting younger, longer flowers, and that 2 the foraging efficiency of B. honshuensis was higher when visiting shorter female flowers. This suggests that morphological correspondence between insects and flowers is important for insect foraging efficiency. However, in contradiction to our prediction, 3 short-tongued bumblebees B. honshuensis sucked nectar more efficiently when visiting younger, longer flowers, and 4 there was no significant difference in the foraging efficiency of B. diversus between flower sexes. These results suggest that morphological fit between the proboscis and the corolla tube is not a sole determinant of foraging efficiency. Bumblebees may adjust their sucking behavior in response to available rewards, and competition over rewards between bumblebee species might change visitation patterns

  5. Nectar robbing, forager efficiency and seed set: Bumblebees foraging on the self incompatible plant Linaria vulgaris (Scrophulariaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stout, Jane C.; Allen, John A.; Goulson, Dave

    2000-07-01

    In southern England, Linaria vulgaris (common yellow toadflax) suffers from high rates of nectar robbery by bumblebees. In a wild population of L. vulgaris we found that 96 % of open flowers were robbed. Five species of bumblebee were observed foraging on these flowers, although short-tongued species ( Bombus lapidarius, B. lucorum and B. terrestris) robbed nectar whilst longer-tongued ones behaved as legitimate pollinators ( B. hortorum and B. pascuorum). Nectar rewards were highly variable; on average there was less nectar in robbed than in unrobbed flowers, but this difference was not statistically significant. The proportion of flowers containing no nectar was significantly higher for robbed flowers compared with unrobbed flowers. Secondary robbers and legitimate pollinators had similar handling times on flowers and, assuming they select flowers at random to forage on, received approximately the same nectar profit per minute, largely because most flowers had been robbed. There was no significant difference in the number of seeds in pods of robbed flowers and in pods of flowers that were artificially protected against robbing. However, more of the robbed flowers set at least some seed than the unrobbed flowers, possibly as a consequence of the experimental manipulation. We suggest that nectar robbing has little effect on plant fecundity because legitimate foragers are present in the population, and that seed predation and seed abortion after fertilization may be more important factors in limiting seed production in this species.

  6. Stable Isotopic Insights into the Foraging Ecology of an Endangered Marine Predator, the Hawaiian Petrel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiley, A. E.; Ostrom, P. H.; James, H. F.

    2010-12-01

    Seabirds play vital roles in their ecosystems, both as predators in their oceanic foraging grounds and conduits of marine nutrients to island nesting sites. Despite growing evidence that food availability limits seabird populations, characterization of the diet and even foraging locations of some seabird species remains elusive. Here, we use stable carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotopes to study the foraging ecology of an endangered and poorly known seabird, the Hawaiian petrel (Pterodroma sandwichensis). This species nests solely on the main Hawaiian Islands but forages widely across the NE Pacific, sometimes traveling over 10,000km on single foraging trips. δ13C and δ15N values vary with trophic level and at the base of food webs throughout the marine range of the Hawaiian petrel. Thus, we are able to use isotope signatures in modern and ancient petrel tissues to track spatial and temporal variation in foraging location and diet. We find strong evidence of foraging segregation between populations, with hatch-year birds from the island of Hawaii exhibiting feather δ15N and δ13C values over 3‰ and 1 ‰ higher, respectively, than those found in Maui and Kauai hatch-year birds. There is also significant variation in δ15N values between feathers from Kauai, Hawaii, and Maui adults, indicating additional foraging segregation during the winter molt. To distinguish between the effects of trophic level and foraging location, we relate our data to those from seabirds with known diet and foraging location, as well as to previous characterizations of isoscapes in the NE Pacific and at-sea observations of our study species. Finally, we track Hawaiian petrel foraging ecology back in time through examination of stable isotope values in historical feathers and ancient bone collagen. We find that, despite a species-wide decline in δ15N values (consistent with trophic level decline), populations have maintained divergent isotopic niches through at least the past 1

  7. Foraging Activity of Four Bee Species on Sesame Flowers During Two Successive Seasons in Ismailia Governorate, Egypt

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    Soliman M. Kamel

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Foraging activity of four bee species, Apis mellifera L., Osmia spp., Ceratina tarsataMorawitz and Xylocopa pubescens Spinola on sesame flowers was studied during two successiveseasons of 2011 and 2012. Experimental observations were made during four periodsof the day: 9:00-11:00 am, 11:00 am-1:00 pm, 1:00-3:00 pm and 3:00-5:00 pm, startingfrom initial flowering until the final session. Observation time was five minutes during eachperiod and four bee species were observed visiting each square meter area. Five spots of 1m2 area were selected randomly, and the number of different species of bees visiting wascounted for five minutes by using electronic stopwatch, voice recorder and digital videocamera. The results of the study indicated that the four bee species were most abundanton sesame flowers between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm, and between 1:00 and 3:00 pm. Amongthe bees, Apis mellifera was the predominant species, followed by Ceratina tarsata, in theseason of 2011, while a reverse order of the two was recorded in 2012. The average timespent per flower was highly significantly different among these four species.

  8. Interference between perennial grassland and Lavandula stoechas subsp. pedunculata seedlings: a case of spatial segregation cause by competition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Ana M.; Peco, Begoña

    2004-07-01

    This paper analyses the relationship between Lavandula stoechas subsp. pedunculata, a common Mediterranean scrub species in central Iberia, and perennial grasslands. While Lavandula gives rise to almost monospecific formations in intermediate and upper hill zones, perennial grasses occupy the low areas. The proposed explanatory hypothesis for this spatial distribution is that the scrub is unable to establish itself in grasslands with heavy spatial occupation. We designed two experiments to test this hypothesis, one which analysed the effect of perennial grass cover on Lavandula establishment, and another which focused on its influence on previously implanted seedling survival and growth, distinguishing the effect of shoot and root interference. The results show negative interference during establishment and later in the use of light and nutrients. This results in a very low overall survival probability, with only 1.4% of seedlings surviving the first growth period. This low success rate explains the existence of a clear spatial segregation between scrub patches and perennial-dominated grasslands.

  9. Foraging behavior of pileated woodpeckers in partial cut and uncut bottomland hardwood forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newell, P.; King, Sammy L.; Kaller, Michael D.

    2009-01-01

    In bottomland hardwood forests, partial cutting techniques are increasingly advocated and used to create habitat for priority wildlife like Louisiana black bear (Ursus americanus luteolus), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), and Neotropical migrants. Although partial cutting may be beneficial to some species, those that use dead wood may be negatively affected since large diameter and poor quality trees (deformed, moribund, or dead) are rare, but normally targeted for removal. On the other hand, partial cutting can create dead wood if logging slash is left on-site. We studied foraging behavior of pileated woodpeckers (Dryocopus pileatus) in one- and two-year-old partial cuts designed to benefit priority species and in uncut forest during winter, spring, and summer of 2006 and 2007 in Louisiana. Males and females did not differ in their use of tree species, dbh class, decay class, foraging height, use of foraging tactics or substrate types; however, males foraged on larger substrates than females. In both partial cut and uncut forest, standing live trees were most frequently used (83% compared to 14% for standing dead trees and 3% for coarse woody debris); however, dead trees were selected (i.e. used out of proportion to availability). Overcup oak (Quercus lyrata) and bitter pecan (Carya aquatica) were also selected and sugarberry (Celtis laevigata) avoided. Pileated woodpeckers selected trees >= 50 cm dbh and avoided trees in smaller dbh classes (10-20 cm). Density of selected foraging substrates was the same in partial cut and uncut forest. Of the foraging substrates, woodpeckers spent 54% of foraging time on live branches and boles, 37% on dead branches and boles, and 9% on vines. Of the foraging tactics, the highest proportion of foraging time was spent excavating (58%), followed by pecking (14%), gleaning (14%), scaling (7%), berry-eating (4%), and probing (3%). Woodpecker use of foraging tactics and substrates, and foraging height and substrate

  10. Comparative Foraging Efficiency of Two Sympatric Jackals, Silver-Backed Jackals (Canis mesomelas and Golden Jackals (Canis aureus, in the Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

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    S. E. Temu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The foraging efficiency of two sympatric species of jackals, silver-backed jackals (Canis mesomelas and golden jackals (Canis aureus, was studied in the Ngorongoro crater from July 2014 through May 2015. The focal animal observation method was used and individuals of both species were followed as they foraged from morning to evening. Observations of individuals of both jackal species were made from a vehicle using binoculars and a spotting scope. Three major parameters were used for determination of foraging efficiency: distance travelled while foraging, time spent foraging, and amount of food secured in foraging period. The Mann–Whitney U test showed no significant difference (P>0.05 in distance travelled per unit time of foraging between the two species in the dry and wet seasons, respectively. Golden jackals secured a significantly higher amount of food than the silver-backed jackals in the wet season (Mann–Whitney U test, P<0.05, U=1035.4. Hunting of prey larger than Thomson’s gazelle (Eudorcas thomsonii fawns was not common. Both species mainly fed on smaller prey such as invertebrates and rodents and scavenged opportunistically. Efficient foraging is crucial for both jackal species especially during their breeding season when they are provisioning dependent pups.

  11. Evaluation of the nutritional value of locally produced forage in Korea using chemical analysis and in vitro ruminal fermentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ki, Kwang Seok; Park, Su Bum; Lim, Dong Hyun; Seo, Seongwon

    2017-03-01

    The use of locally produced forage (LPF) in cattle production has economic and environmental advantages over imported forage. The objective of this study was to characterize the nutritional value of LPF commonly used in Korea. Differences in ruminal fermentation characteristics were also examined for the LPF species commonly produced from two major production regions: Chungcheong and Jeolla. Ten LPF (five from each of the two regions) and six of the most widely used imported forages originating from North America were obtained at least three times throughout a year. Each forage species was pooled and analyzed for nutrient content using detailed chemical analysis. Ruminal fermentation characteristics were also determined by in vitro anaerobic incubations using strained rumen fluid for 0, 3, 6, 12, 24, and 48 h. At each incubation time, total gas, pH, ammonia, volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentrations, and neutral detergent fiber digestibility were measured. By fitting an exponential model, gas production kinetics were obtained. Significant differences were found in the non-fiber carbohydrate (NFC) content among the forage species and the regions (pruminal fermentation of LPF between the two regions and interactions between regions and forage species were also significant (pruminal fermentation was lower in the forages from Chungcheong than from Jeolla (p<0.01), and total VFA concentration was higher in Chungcheong than in Jeolla (p = 0.05). This implies that fermentation was more active with the forages from Chungcheong than from Jeolla. Analysis of gas production profiles showed the rate of fermentation differed among forage species (p<0.05). The results of the present study showed that the nutritional values of some LPF (i.e., corn silage and Italian ryegrass) are comparable to those of imported forages widely used in Korea. This study also indicated that the nutritional value of LPF differs by origin, as well as by forage species. Detailed analyses of nutrient

  12. The role of growth form and correlated traits in competitive ranking of six perennial ruderal plant species grown in unbalanced mixtures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietz, Hansjörg; Steinlein, Thomas; Ullmann, Isolde

    1998-02-01

    The competitive abilities of six perennial ruderal plants of three different growth forms were compared via yield measures using an additive diallel experimental design with unbalanced mixtures (9:3 or 3:9 plants per pot, respectively). Thus, in a given mixture species A was grown in two configurations: three individuals in centre position of the pot together with nine plants of species B in border position and vice versa. Effect competitive abilities as well as response competitive abilities of the species were significantly related to canopy height and plant biomass. The species with lower rosette growth form and smaller biomasses were weaker competitors than the species possessing elevated canopies along with higher biomasses, whereas total leaf area was not significantly correlated with competitive ability between species. Species differences in competitive ability were stronger between the plants grown in the central position than between those grown in the border position. Furthermore, interactions between species-specific traits and configuration could be observed, indicating the importance of species proportions and arrangement patterns for evaluation of competitive outcome in the field. The degree of complete transitivity of the competitive network of the six ruderal species, which was significantly higher than expected under the null model in our experimental design, also seemed to depend on species proportions in mixture. Shifts in root:shoot ratio of the centre plants when faced with competition by the border plants were in the direction of higher shoot allocation for the weak competitors with rosette growth form irrespective of the neighbour species, except for Bunias orientalis, which showed a more plastic response. The stronger competitors showed higher root allocation ( Urtica dioica) or were hardly affected at all. Consistent with the results of our experiment, the weaker competitors occur at rather frequently disturbed and therefore transient

  13. Foraging behavior of three bee species in a natural mimicry system: female flowers which mimic male flowers in Ecballium elaterium (Cucurbitaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dukas, Reuyen

    1987-12-01

    The behavior of Apis mellifera and two species of solitary bees which forage in the flowers of monoecious Ecballium elaterium (L.) A. Rich (Cucurbitaceae) were compared. The female flowers of E. elaterium resemble male flowers visually but are nectarless, and their number is relatively smaller. Apis mellifera was found to discriminate between the two genders and to pay relatively fewer visits to female flowers (mean of 30% relative to male flowers) from the beginning of their activity in the morning. The time spent by honeybees in female flowers is very short compared to that spent in male flowers. It is surmised that the bees remember the differences between the flowers where they foraged on the previous days. In contrast, the two species of solitary bees Lasioglossum politum (Morawitz) (Halictidae) and Ceratina mandibularis Fiese (Anthophoridae) visit the female flowers with nearly equal frequencies at the beginning of each foraging day and stay longer in these flowers. Over the day there is a decline in the relative frequency of visits to female flowers and also in the mean time spent in them. The study shows that bees can collect rewards at high efficiency from the flowers of Ecballium elaterium because of their partial discrimination ability and the scarcity of the mimic flowers. It is suggested that the memory pattern of some solitary bees may be different from that of Apis mellifera. It seems that the limited memory and discrimination ability of bees can lead to a high frequency of visits to the mimic flowers during a long flowering season.

  14. Forage fish, their fisheries, and their predators: who drives whom?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engelhard, Georg H.; Peck, Myron A.; Rindorf, Anna

    2014-01-01

    exist, as in the North Sea. Sandeel appears to be the most important prey forage fish. Seabirds are most dependent on forage fish, due to specialized diet and distributional constraints (breeding colonies). Other than fisheries, key predators of forage fish are a few piscivorous fish species including...... saithe, whiting, mackerel, and horse-mackerel, exploited in turn by fisheries; seabirds and seals have a more modest impact. Size-based foodwebmodelling suggests that reducing fishing mortality may not necessarily lead to larger stocks of piscivorous fish, especially if their early life stages compete...

  15. Multidimensional differentiation in foraging resource use during breeding of two sympatric top predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedemann, Guilad; Leshem, Yossi; Kerem, Lior; Shacham, Boaz; Bar-Massada, Avi; McClain, Krystaal M.; Bohrer, Gil; Izhaki, Ido

    2016-10-01

    Ecologically-similar species were found to develop specific strategies to partition their resources, leading to niche differentiation and divergence, in order to avoid interspecific competition. Our study determines multi-dimensional differentiation of two sympatric top-predators, long-legged buzzards (LLB) and short-toed eagles (STE), which recently became sympatric during their breeding season in the Judean Foothills, Israel. By combining information from comprehensive diet and movement analyses we found four dimensions of differentiation: (1) Geographic foraging area: LLB tended to forage relatively close to their nests (2.35 ± 0.62 km), while STE forage far from their nest (13.03 ± 2.20 km) (2) Foraging-habitat type: LLBs forage at low natural vegetation, avoiding cultivated fields, whereas STEs forage in cultivated fields, avoiding low natural vegetation; (3) Diurnal dynamics of foraging: LLBs are uniformly active during daytime, whereas STEs activity peaks in the early afternoon; and (4) Food-niche: while both species largely rely on reptiles (47.8% and 76.3% for LLB and STE, respectively), LLB had a more diverse diet and consumed significantly higher percentages of lizards, while STE consumed significantly higher percentages of snakes. Our results suggest that this multidimensional differentiation allows the spatial coexistence of these two dense populations in the study area.

  16. Urban Foraging: A Ubiquitous Human Practice Overlooked by Urban Planners, Policy, and Research

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    Charlie M. Shackleton

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Although hardly noticed or formally recognised, urban foraging by humans probably occurs in all urban settings around the world. We draw from research in India, South Africa, Sweden, and the United States to demonstrate the ubiquity and varied nature of urban foraging in different contexts. Across these different contexts, we distil seven themes that characterise and thereby advance thinking about research and the understanding of urban foraging. We show that it is widespread and occurs across a variety of urban spaces and places. The species used and the local practices vary between contexts, and are in constant flux as urban ecological and social settings change. This requires that urban foragers are knowledgeable about diverse species, harvest locations, and rights of access, and that their practices are adaptable to changing contexts. Despite its ubiquity, most cities have some forms of regulations that prohibit or discourage urban foraging. We highlight a few important exceptions that can provide prototypes and lessons for other cities regarding supportive policy frameworks and initiatives. The formulation of dynamic policy, design, and management strategies in support of urban foraging will benefit from understanding the common characteristics of foraging in cities worldwide, but also will require comprehension of the specific and dynamic contexts in which they would be implemented.

  17. Avoiding competition? Site use, diet and foraging behaviours in two similarly sized geese wintering in China

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhao, Meijuan; Cao, Lei; Klaassen, Marcel

    2015-01-01

    at Shengjin Lake, China. To examine the potential for coexistence and possible avoidance strategies, we studied (1) their habitat use, (2) foraging behaviours and (3) diets of birds foraging in mixed- and single-species flocks. Both species extensively exploited sedge meadows, where they showed considerable...

  18. Nutrient foraging strategies are associated with productivity and population growth in forest shrubs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stone, Bram W. G.; Faillace, Cara A.; Lafond, Jonathan J.; Baumgarten, Joni M.; Mozdzer, Thomas J.; Dighton, John; Meiners, Scott J.; Grabosky, Jason C.; Ehrenfeld, Joan G.

    2017-01-01

    Background and Aims Temperate deciduous forest understoreys are experiencing widespread changes in community composition, concurrent with increases in rates of nitrogen supply. These shifts in plant abundance may be driven by interspecific differences in nutrient foraging (i.e. conservative vs. acquisitive strategies) and, thus, adaptation to contemporary nutrient loading conditions. This study sought to determine if interspecific differences in nutrient foraging could help explain patterns of shrub success and decline in eastern North American forests. Methods Using plants grown in a common garden, fine root traits associated with nutrient foraging were measured for six shrub species. Traits included the mean and skewness of the root diameter distribution, specific root length (SRL), C:N ratio, root tissue density, arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization and foraging precision. Above- and below-ground productivity were also determined for the same plants, and population growth rates were estimated using data from a long-term study of community dynamics. Root traits were compared among species and associations among root traits, measures of productivity and rates of population growth were evaluated. Key Results Species fell into groups having thick or thin root forms, which correspond to conservative vs. acquisitive nutrient foraging strategies. Interspecific variation in root morphology and tissue construction correlated with measures of productivity and rates of cover expansion. Of the four species with acquisitive traits, three were introduced species that have become invasive in recent decades, and the fourth was a weedy native. In contrast, the two species with conservative traits were historically dominant shrubs that have declined in abundance in eastern North American forests. Conclusions In forest understoreys of eastern North America, elevated nutrient availability may impose a filter on species success in addition to above-ground processes such as herbivory

  19. Ecomorphology of eye shape and retinal topography in waterfowl (Aves: Anseriformes: Anatidae) with different foraging modes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisney, Thomas J; Stecyk, Karyn; Kolominsky, Jeffrey; Schmidt, Brian K; Corfield, Jeremy R; Iwaniuk, Andrew N; Wylie, Douglas R

    2013-05-01

    Despite the large body of literature on ecomorphological adaptations to foraging in waterfowl, little attention has been paid to their sensory systems, especially vision. Here, we compare eye shape and retinal topography across 12 species representing 4 different foraging modes. Eye shape was significantly different among foraging modes, with diving and pursuit-diving species having relatively smaller corneal diameters compared to non-diving species. This may be associated with differences in ambient light intensity while foraging or an ability to tightly constrict the pupil in divers in order to facilitate underwater vision. Retinal topography was similar across all species, consisting of an oblique visual streak, a central area of peak cell density, and no discernible fovea. Because the bill faces downwards when the head is held in the normal posture in waterfowl, the visual streak will be held horizontally, allowing the horizon to be sampled with higher visual acuity. Estimates of spatial resolving power were similar among species with only the Canada goose having a higher spatial resolution. Overall, we found no evidence of ecomorphological adaptations to different foraging modes in the retinal ganglion cell layer in waterfowl. Rather, retinal topography in these birds seems to reflect the 'openness' of their habitats.

  20. Plant species composition alters the sign and strength of an emergent multi-predator effect by modifying predator foraging behaviour.

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    Andrew Wilby

    Full Text Available The prediction of pest-control functioning by multi-predator communities is hindered by the non-additive nature of species functioning. Such non-additivity, commonly termed an emergent multi-predator effect, is known to be affected by elements of the ecological context, such as the structure and composition of vegetation, in addition to the traits of the predators themselves. Here we report mesocosm experiments designed to test the influence of plant density and species composition (wheat monoculture or wheat and faba bean polyculture on the emergence of multi-predator effects between Adalia bipunctata and Chrysoperla carnea, in their suppression of populations of the aphid Metopolophium dirhodum. The mesocosm experiments were followed by a series of behavioural observations designed to identify how interactions among predators are modified by plant species composition and whether these effects are consistent with the observed influence of plant species composition on aphid population suppression. Although plant density was shown to have no influence on the multi-predator effect on aphid population growth, plant composition had a marked effect. In wheat monoculture, Adalia and Chrysoperla mixed treatments caused greater suppression of M. dirhodum populations than expected. However this positive emergent effect was reversed to a negative multi-predator effect in wheat and faba bean polyculture. The behavioural observations revealed that although dominant individuals did not respond to the presence of faba bean plants, the behaviour of sub-dominants was affected markedly, consistent with their foraging for extra-floral nectar produced by the faba bean. This interaction between plant composition and predator community composition on the foraging behaviour of sub-dominants is thought to underlie the observed effect of plant composition on the multi-predator effect. Thus, the emergence of multi-predator effects is shown to be strongly influenced by

  1. The role of foraging behaviour in the sexual segregation of the African elephant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shannon, Graeme; Page, Bruce R; Duffy, Kevin J; Slotow, Rob

    2006-11-01

    Elephants (Loxodonta africana) exhibit pronounced sexual dimorphism, and in this study we test the prediction that the differences in body size and sociality are significant enough to drive divergent foraging strategies and ultimately sexual segregation. Body size influences the foraging behaviour of herbivores through the differential scaling coefficients of metabolism and gut size, with larger bodied individuals being able to tolerate greater quantities of low-quality, fibrous vegetation, whilst having lower mass-specific energy requirements. We test two distinct theories: the scramble competition hypothesis (SCH) and the forage selection hypothesis (FSH). Comprehensive behavioural data were collected from the Pongola Game Reserve and the Phinda Private Game Reserve in South Africa over a 2.5-year period. The data were analysed using sex as the independent variable. Adult females targeted a wider range of species, adopted a more selective foraging approach and exhibited greater bite rates as predicted by the body size hypothesis and the increased demands of reproductive investment (lactation and pregnancy). Males had longer feeding bouts, displayed significantly more destructive behaviour (31% of observations, 11% for females) and ingested greater quantities of forage during each feeding bout. The independent ranging behaviour of adult males enables them to have longer foraging bouts as they experience fewer social constraints than females. The SCH was rejected as a cause of sexual segregation due to the relative abundance of low quality forage, and the fact that feeding heights were similar for both males and females. However, we conclude that the differences in the foraging strategies of the sexes are sufficient to cause spatial segregation as postulated by the FSH. Sexual dimorphism and the associated behavioural differences have important implications for the management and conservation of elephant and other dimorphic species, with the sexes effectively

  2. Red-cockaded woodpecker male/female foraging differences in young forest stands.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Franzreb, Kathleen, E.

    2010-07-01

    ABSTRACT The Red-cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) is an endangered species endemic to pine (Pinus spp.) forests of the southeastern United States. I examined Red-cockaded Woodpecker foraging behavior to learn if there were male/female differences at the Savannah River Site, South Carolina. The study was conducted in largely young forest stands (,50 years of age) in contrast to earlier foraging behavior studies that focused on more mature forest. The Redcockaded Woodpecker at the Savannah River site is intensively managed including monitoring, translocation, and installation of artificial cavity inserts for roosting and nesting. Over a 3-year period, 6,407 foraging observations covering seven woodpecker family groups were recorded during all seasons of the year and all times of day. The most striking differences occurred in foraging method (males usually scaled [45% of observations] and females mostly probed [47%]),substrate used (females had a stronger preference [93%] for the trunk than males [79%]), and foraging height from the ground (mean 6 SE foraging height was higher for males [11.1 6 0.5 m] than females [9.8 6 0.5 m]). Niche overlap between males and females was lowest for substrate (85.6%) and foraging height (87.8%), and highest for tree species (99.0%), tree condition (98.3%), and tree height (96.4%). Both males and females preferred to forage in older, large pine trees. The habitat available at the Savannah River Site was considerably younger than at most other locations, but the pattern of male/female habitat partitioning observed was similar to that documented elsewhere within the range attesting to the species’ ability to adjust behaviorally.

  3. Foraging patch selection in winter: a balance between predation risk and thermoregulation benefit.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Villén-Pérez

    Full Text Available In winter, foraging activity is intended to optimize food search while minimizing both thermoregulation costs and predation risk. Here we quantify the relative importance of thermoregulation and predation in foraging patch selection of woodland birds wintering in a Mediterranean montane forest. Specifically, we account for thermoregulation benefits related to temperature, and predation risk associated with both illumination of the feeding patch and distance to the nearest refuge provided by vegetation. We measured the amount of time that 38 marked individual birds belonging to five small passerine species spent foraging at artificial feeders. Feeders were located in forest patches that vary in distance to protective cover and exposure to sun radiation; temperature and illumination were registered locally by data loggers. Our results support the influence of both thermoregulation benefits and predation costs on feeding patch choice. The influence of distance to refuge (negative relationship was nearly three times higher than that of temperature (positive relationship in determining total foraging time spent at a patch. Light intensity had a negligible and no significant effect. This pattern was generalizable among species and individuals within species, and highlights the preponderance of latent predation risk over thermoregulation benefits on foraging decisions of birds wintering in temperate Mediterranean forests.

  4. Fine-scale foraging ecology of leatherback turtles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan P Wallace

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Remote tracking of migratory species and statistical modeling of behaviors have enabled identification of areas that are of high ecological value to these widely distributed taxa. However, direct observations at fine spatio-temporal scales are often needed to correctly interpret behaviors. In this study, we combined GPS-derived locations and archival dive records (1 sec sampling rate with animal-borne video footage from foraging leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea in Nova Scotia, Canada (Northwest Atlantic Ocean to generate the most highly detailed description of natural leatherback behavior presented to date. Turtles traveled shorter distances at slower rates and increased diving rates in areas of high prey abundance, which resulted in higher prey capture rates. Increased foraging effort (e.g., dive rate, dive duration, prey handling time, number of bites was not associated with increased time at the surface breathing to replenish oxygen stores. Instead, leatherbacks generally performed short, shallow dives in the photic zone to or above the thermocline, where they disproportionately captured prey at bottoms of dives and during ascents. This foraging strategy supports visual prey detection, allows leatherbacks to exploit physically structured prey at relatively shallow depths (typically <30m, and increases time turtles spend in warmer water temperatures, thus optimizing net energy acquisition. Our results demonstrate that leatherbacks appear to be continuously foraging during daylight hours while in continental shelf waters of Nova Scotia, and that leatherback foraging behavior is driven by prey availability, not by whether or not a turtle is in a resource patch characterized by a particular size or prey density. Our study demonstrates the fundamental importance of obtaining field-based, direct observations of true behaviors at fine spatial and temporal scales to enhance our efforts to both study and manage migratory species.

  5. Transcriptome Analysis in Sheepgrass (Leymus chinensis). A Dominant Perennial Grass of the Eurasian Steppe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, Shuangyan [Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Institute of Botany (IB), Beijing; Huang, Xin [Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Institute of Botany (IB), Beijing; Yang, Xiaohan [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Liu, Gongshe [Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Institute of Botany (IB), Beijing

    2013-07-04

    BACKGROUND: Sheepgrass [Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel.] is an important perennial forage grass across the Eurasian Steppe and is known for its adaptability to various environmental conditions. However, insufficient data resources in public databases for sheepgrass limited our understanding of the mechanism of environmental adaptations, gene discovery and molecular marker development. RESULTS: The transcriptome of sheepgrass was sequenced using Roche 454 pyrosequencing technology. We assembled 952,328 high-quality reads into 87,214 unigenes, including 32,416 contigs and 54,798 singletons. There were 15,450 contigs over 500 bp in length. BLAST searches of our database against Swiss-Prot and NCBI non-redundant protein sequences (nr) databases resulted in the annotation of 54,584 (62.6%) of the unigenes. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis assigned 89,129 GO term annotations for 17,463 unigenes. We identified 11,675 core Poaceae-specific and 12,811 putative sheepgrass-specific unigenes by BLAST searches against all plant genome and transcriptome databases. A total of 2,979 specific freezing-responsive unigenes were found from this RNAseq dataset. We identified 3,818 EST-SSRs in 3,597 unigenes, and some SSRs contained unigenes that were also candidates for freezing-response genes. Characterizations of nucleotide repeats and dominant motifs of SSRs in sheepgrass were also performed. Similarity and phylogenetic analysis indicated that sheepgrass is closely related to barley and wheat. CONCLUSIONS: This research has greatly enriched sheepgrass transcriptome resources. The identified stress-related genes will help us to decipher the genetic basis of the environmental and ecological adaptations of this species and will be used to improve wheat and barley crops through hybridization or genetic transformation. The EST-SSRs reported here will be a valuable resource for future gene-phenotype studies and for the molecular breeding of sheepgrass and other Poaceae species.

  6. Transcriptome analysis in sheepgrass (Leymus chinensis): a dominant perennial grass of the Eurasian Steppe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shuangyan; Huang, Xin; Yan, Xueqing; Liang, Ye; Wang, Yuezhu; Li, Xiaofeng; Peng, Xianjun; Ma, Xingyong; Zhang, Lexin; Cai, Yueyue; Ma, Tian; Cheng, Liqin; Qi, Dongmei; Zheng, Huajun; Yang, Xiaohan; Li, Xiaoxia; Liu, Gongshe

    2013-01-01

    Sheepgrass [Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel.] is an important perennial forage grass across the Eurasian Steppe and is known for its adaptability to various environmental conditions. However, insufficient data resources in public databases for sheepgrass limited our understanding of the mechanism of environmental adaptations, gene discovery and molecular marker development. The transcriptome of sheepgrass was sequenced using Roche 454 pyrosequencing technology. We assembled 952,328 high-quality reads into 87,214 unigenes, including 32,416 contigs and 54,798 singletons. There were 15,450 contigs over 500 bp in length. BLAST searches of our database against Swiss-Prot and NCBI non-redundant protein sequences (nr) databases resulted in the annotation of 54,584 (62.6%) of the unigenes. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis assigned 89,129 GO term annotations for 17,463 unigenes. We identified 11,675 core Poaceae-specific and 12,811 putative sheepgrass-specific unigenes by BLAST searches against all plant genome and transcriptome databases. A total of 2,979 specific freezing-responsive unigenes were found from this RNAseq dataset. We identified 3,818 EST-SSRs in 3,597 unigenes, and some SSRs contained unigenes that were also candidates for freezing-response genes. Characterizations of nucleotide repeats and dominant motifs of SSRs in sheepgrass were also performed. Similarity and phylogenetic analysis indicated that sheepgrass is closely related to barley and wheat. This research has greatly enriched sheepgrass transcriptome resources. The identified stress-related genes will help us to decipher the genetic basis of the environmental and ecological adaptations of this species and will be used to improve wheat and barley crops through hybridization or genetic transformation. The EST-SSRs reported here will be a valuable resource for future gene-phenotype studies and for the molecular breeding of sheepgrass and other Poaceae species.

  7. Forage Food of Timor Deer (Cervus timorensis in Manokwari, West Papua

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AYS Arobaya

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Traditionally, back yard deer husbandry is well developed in some parts in Papua, though information on deer husbandry has not been provided yet. Therefore, this study was aimed at highlighting the diet provided to the deer in back yard husbandry model in Manokwari. Survey method was approached by visiting eight deer back yard farmer respondents. Direct observation to the feeding site and semi-structured interview were carried out to learn about the deer management system, and identify the forage diet species consumed and served to the animals. The results indicated five most common forage species consumed in the study; they were field grass, Imperata (Imperata cylindrica, elephant grass (Penisetum purpureum, king grass (Penisetum purpureopoidhes and Melinis minutiflora depending on the location of farmed deer. Drinking water was offered and feed supplement such as various leafs, food and vegetable left over and banana peel was provided by 62.5% of the respondents. Food supplement was given two times per day (morning, evening and (afternoon, evening. Forage food species consumed in the study sites were relatively more similar to the food in the natural habitat. (Animal Production 12(2: 91-95 (2010Key Words: forage, food, Timor deer, Manokwari

  8. Differing foraging strategies influence mercury (Hg) exposure in an Antarctic penguin community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polito, Michael J; Brasso, Rebecka L; Trivelpiece, Wayne Z; Karnovsky, Nina; Patterson, William P; Emslie, Steven D

    2016-11-01

    Seabirds are ideal model organisms to track mercury (Hg) through marine food webs as they are long-lived, broadly distributed, and are susceptible to biomagnification due to foraging at relatively high trophic levels. However, using these species as biomonitors requires a solid understanding of the degree of species, sexual and age-specific variation in foraging behaviors which act to mediate their dietary exposure to Hg. We combined stomach content analysis along with Hg and stable isotope analyses of blood, feathers and common prey items to help explain inter and intra-specific patterns of dietary Hg exposure across three sympatric Pygoscelis penguin species commonly used as biomonitors of Hg availability in the Antarctic marine ecosystem. We found that penguin tissue Hg concentrations differed across species, between adults and juveniles, but not between sexes. While all three penguins species diets were dominated by Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and to a lesser extent fish, stable isotope based proxies of relative trophic level and krill consumption could not by itself sufficiently explain the observed patterns of inter and intra-specific variation in Hg. However, integrating isotopic approaches with stomach content analysis allowed us to identify the relatively higher risk of Hg exposure for penguins foraging on mesopelagic prey relative to congeners targeting epipelagic or benthic prey species. When possible, future seabird biomonitoring studies should seek to combine isotopic approaches with other, independent measures of foraging behavior to better account for the confounding effects of inter and intra-specific variation on dietary Hg exposure. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Mercury and persistent organic pollutants in native and invading forage species of the Canadian Arctic: Consequences for food web dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedro, Sara; Fisk, Aaron T; Tomy, Gregg T; Ferguson, Steven H; Hussey, Nigel E; Kessel, Steven T; McKinney, Melissa A

    2017-10-01

    Contaminant dynamics within Arctic marine food webs may be altered through the climate-driven northward invasions of temperate/boreal species. Here, we compare tissue concentrations of total mercury (THg) and legacy and emerging persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in native versus invading forage species sampled from 2012 to 2014 near Arviat, Clyde River, and Resolute Bay, NU, representing, low, mid- and high eastern Canadian Arctic regions, respectively. Concentrations of THg, legacy Σ-polychlorinated biphenyls (ΣPCB) and Σ-organochlorine (ΣOC) pesticides were detected in all forage species, whereas emerging halogenated flame retardants were detected in only a few individuals. Concentrations of major contaminant groups among regions did not vary for Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida), while for sculpin (Cottoidea) there was no clear latitudinal trend. Thus, considering interspecific variation, native sculpin and northern shrimp (Pandalus borealis) had the highest overall concentrations of THg (0.17 ± 0.02 and 0.21 ± 0.01 μg g -1 wet weight, respectively), ΣPCB (322 ± 35 and 245 ± 25 ng g -1 lipid weight (lw), respectively), and ΣOC (413 ± 38 and 734 ± 64 ng g -1 lw, respectively). Comparing the keystone native species, Arctic cod, to its 'replacement' species, capelin (Mallotus villosus) and sandlance (Ammodytes spp.), THg concentrations were higher in Arctic cod compared to capelin (p compound patterns, in capelin and sandlance relative to Arctic cod seem, therefore, more likely related to a more "temperate"-type contaminant signature in the invaders. Nevertheless, the relatively small (up to two-fold) magnitude of these differences suggested limited effects of these ecological changes on contaminant uptake by Arctic piscivores. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Effects of forage types on digestibility, methane emissions, and nitrogen utilization efficiency in two genotypes of hill ewes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Y G; Annett, R; Yan, T

    2017-08-01

    Thirty-six nonpregnant hill ewes (18 pure Scottish Blackface and 18 Swaledale × Scottish Blackface) aged 18 mo and weighing 48 ± 4.8 kg were allocated to 3 forage treatments balanced for genotype and BW. Each genotype was offered 3 forages (pelleted ryegrass, fresh lowland grass, and fresh hill grass) ad libitum with 6 ewes for each of the 6 genotype × diet combination treatments. Pelleted ryegrass was sourced from a commercial supplier (Drygrass South Western Ltd, Burrington, UK). Fresh lowland grass was harvested daily in the morning from a third regrowth perennial ryegrass () sward. Fresh hill grass was harvested from a seminatural hill grassland every 2 d and stored in plastic bags at 4 to 5°C until offered. The animals were individually housed in pens and offered experimental diets for 14 d before being transferred to 6 individual respiration chambers for a further 4 d, during which feed intake, fecal and urine outputs, and CH emissions were measured. There was no interaction between genotype and forage types on any variable measured. In a comparison of effects of the 3 forages, pelleted ryegrass had the greatest ( reduce CH emissions per kilogram DMI. These equations add new information in predicting enteric CH emissions and N utilization efficiency and can be used to quantify the environmental footprint of hill sheep production systems.

  11. Geographic profiling and animal foraging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Comber, Steven C; Nicholls, Barry; Rossmo, D Kim; Racey, Paul A

    2006-05-21

    Geographic profiling was originally developed as a statistical tool for use in criminal cases, particularly those involving serial killers and rapists. It is designed to help police forces prioritize lists of suspects by using the location of crime scenes to identify the areas in which the criminal is most likely to live. Two important concepts are the buffer zone (criminals are less likely to commit crimes in the immediate vicinity of their home) and distance decay (criminals commit fewer crimes as the distance from their home increases). In this study, we show how the techniques of geographic profiling may be applied to animal data, using as an example foraging patterns in two sympatric colonies of pipistrelle bats, Pipistrellus pipistrellus and P. pygmaeus, in the northeast of Scotland. We show that if model variables are fitted to known roost locations, these variables may be used as numerical descriptors of foraging patterns. We go on to show that these variables can be used to differentiate patterns of foraging in these two species.

  12. Evidence for foraging -site fidelity and individual foraging behavior of pelagic cormorants rearing chicks in the gulf of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotzerka, J.; Hatch, Shyla A.; Garthe, S.

    2011-01-01

    The Pelagic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pelagicus) is the most widespread cormorant in the North Pacific, but little is known about its foraging and diving behavior. However, knowledge of seabirds' foraging behavior is important to understanding their function in the marine environment. In 2006, using GPS dataloggers, we studied the foraging behavior of 14 male Pelagic Cormorants rearing chicks on Middleton Island, Alaska. For foraging, the birds had high fidelity to a small area 8 km north of the colony. Within that area, the cormorants' diving activity was of two distinct kinds-near-surface dives (1-6 m) and benthic dives (28-33 m). Individuals were consistent in the depths of their dives, either mostly shallow or mostly deep. Few showed no depth preference. Dive duration, time at maximum depth, and pauses at the water surface between consecutive dives were shorter for shallow dives than for deep dives. The cormorants made dives of both types throughout the day, but the frequency of deep dives increased toward evening. Maximum foraging range was 9 km; maximum total distance traveled per trip was 43.4 km. Trip durations ranged from 0.3 to 7.7 hr. Maximum depth of a dive was 42.2 m, and duration of dives ranged from 4 to 120 sec. We found that Pelagic Cormorants at Middleton Island were faithful to one particular foraging area and individuals dived in distinct patterns. Distinct, specialized foraging behavior may be advantageous in reducing intra- and interspecific competition but may also render the species vulnerable to changing environmental conditions. Copyright ?? The Cooper Ornithological Society 2011.

  13. A decision-making support system to select forages according to environmental conditions in Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blanca Aurora Arce Barboza

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Low food supply is a major problem affecting a large percentage of the livestock population in Colombia and is largely associated to inappropriate choice of forage species; and thus not well adapted to the environmental conditions of a specific region. To mitigate this problem, without incurring increasing costs associated to changing environmental conditions, it is possible to match the adaptive capacity of species to the environment in which they grow. A decision support system was developed to select suitable forage species for a given environment. The system is based on the use of existing information about requirements of the species rather than specific experimentation. From the information gathered, a database was generated and implemented on ASP.NET in C # and SQL Server database. This system allows users to search and select pastures and forage species for specific soil and climatic conditions of a particular farm or region, through a user-friendly web platform.

  14. Factors affecting ANKOM™ fiber analysis of forage and browse varying in condensed tannin concentration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrill, Thomas H; Wolfe, Richard M; Muir, James P

    2010-12-01

    Browse species containing condensed tannins (CTs) are an important source of nutrition for grazing/browsing livestock and wildlife in many parts of the world, but information on fiber concentration and CT-fiber interactions for these plants is lacking. Ten forage or browse species with a range of CT concentrations were oven dried and freeze dried and then analyzed for ash-corrected neutral detergent fiber (NDFom) and corrected acid detergent fiber (ADFom) using separate samples (ADFSEP) and sequential NDF-ADF analysis (ADFSEQ) with the ANKOM™ fiber analysis system. The ADFSEP and ADFSEQ residues were then analyzed for nitrogen (N) concentration. Oven drying increased (P < 0.05) fiber concentrations with some species, but not with others. For high-CT forage and browse species, ADFSEP concentrations were greater (P < 0.05) than NDFom values and approximately double the ADFSEQ values. Nitrogen concentration was greater (P < 0.05) in ADFSEP than ADFSEQ residues, likely due to precipitation with CTs. Sequential NDF-ADF analysis gave more realistic values and appeared to remove most of the fiber residue contaminants in CT forage samples. Freeze drying samples with sequential NDF-ADF analysis is recommended in the ANKOM™ fiber analysis system with CT-containing forage and browse species. Copyright © 2010 Society of Chemical Industry.

  15. Do bigger bats need more time to forage?

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    CEL. Esbérard

    Full Text Available We test the hypothesis is that bats using the same area and at the same time would be using similar preys, but they would have different foraging times due to specific differences in biomass. A total of 730 captures was analyzed 13 species of Vespertilionidae and Molossidae bats netted over a small dam in southeastern Brazil from 1993 and 1999. The relationship between the average time of captures and the biomass of the species of Vespertilinidae and Molossidae most frequent (captures > 4 was positive and significant (r = 0.83, p = 0.022, N = 7. Two lines are discussed to answer the longer foraging time for bigger bats: 1 larger insectivorous bats don't consume proportionally larger preys and 2 larger insects are less available.

  16. Root morphology and mycorrhizal symbioses together shape nutrient foraging strategies of temperate trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Weile; Koide, Roger T; Adams, Thomas S; DeForest, Jared L; Cheng, Lei; Eissenstat, David M

    2016-08-02

    Photosynthesis by leaves and acquisition of water and minerals by roots are required for plant growth, which is a key component of many ecosystem functions. Although the role of leaf functional traits in photosynthesis is generally well understood, the relationship of root functional traits to nutrient uptake is not. In particular, predictions of nutrient acquisition strategies from specific root traits are often vague. Roots of nearly all plants cooperate with mycorrhizal fungi in nutrient acquisition. Most tree species form symbioses with either arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) or ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi. Nutrients are distributed heterogeneously in the soil, and nutrient-rich "hotspots" can be a key source for plants. Thus, predicting the foraging strategies that enable mycorrhizal root systems to exploit these hotspots can be critical to the understanding of plant nutrition and ecosystem carbon and nutrient cycling. Here, we show that in 13 sympatric temperate tree species, when nutrient availability is patchy, thinner root species alter their foraging to exploit patches, whereas thicker root species do not. Moreover, there appear to be two distinct pathways by which thinner root tree species enhance foraging in nutrient-rich patches: AM trees produce more roots, whereas EM trees produce more mycorrhizal fungal hyphae. Our results indicate that strategies of nutrient foraging are complementary among tree species with contrasting mycorrhiza types and root morphologies, and that predictable relationships between below-ground traits and nutrient acquisition emerge only when both roots and mycorrhizal fungi are considered together.

  17. Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre)

    OpenAIRE

    Grajales-Conesa,Julieta; Meléndez Ramírez,Virginia; Cruz-López,Leopoldo; Sánchez Guillén,Daniel

    2012-01-01

    Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre). Stingless bees have an important role as pollinators of many wild and cultivated plant species in tropical regions. Little is known, however, about the interaction between floral fragrances and the foraging behavior of meliponine species. Thus we investigated the chemical composition of the extracts of citric (lemon and orange) flowers and their effects on the foraging behavi...

  18. Density dependent interactions between VA mycorrhizal fungi and even-aged seedlings of two perennial Fabaceae species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allsopp, N; Stock, W D

    1992-08-01

    The interaction of density and mycorrhizal effects on the growth, mineral nutrition and size distribution of seedlings of two perennial members of the Fabaceae was investigated in pot culture. Seedlings of Otholobium hirtum and Aspalathus linearis were grown at densities of 1, 4, 8 and 16 plants per 13-cm pot with or without vesicular-arbuscular (VA) mycorrhizal inoculum for 120 days. Plant mass, relative growth rates, height and leaf number all decreased with increasing plant density. This was ascribed to the decreasing availability of phosphorus per plant as density increased. O. hirtum was highly dependent on mycorrhizas for P uptake but both mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal A. linearis seedlings were able to extract soil P with equal ease. Plant size distribution as measured by the coefficient of variation (CV) of shoot mass was greater at higher densities. CVs of mycorrhizal O. hirtum plants were higher than those of non-mycorrhizal plants. CVs of the facultatively mycorrhizal A. linearis were similar for both mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal plants. Higher CVs are attributed to resource preemption by larger individuals. Individuals in populations with high CVs will probably survive stress which would result in the extinction of populations with low CVs. Mass of mycorrhizal plants of both species decreased more rapidly with increasing density than did non-mycorrhizal plant mass. It is concluded that the cost of being mycorrhizal increases as plant density increases, while the benefit decreases. The results suggest that mycorrhizas will influence density-dependent population processes of faculative and obligate mycorrhizal species.

  19. Effective rumen degradation of dry matter, crude protein and neutral detergent fibre in forage determined by near infrared reflectance spectroscopy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ohlsson, C; Houmøller, L P; Weisbjerg, Martin Riis

    2007-01-01

    The objective of the present study was to examine if near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) could be used to predict degradation parameters and effective degradation from scans of original forage samples. Degradability of dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP) and neutral detergent fibre (NDF......) of 61 samples of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) and orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.) was tested by using the in situ technique. The grass samples were harvested at three different stages, early vegetative growth, early reproductive growth and late reproductive growth. Degradability...

  20. Alley cropping of legumes with grasses as forages : Effect of different grass species and row spacing of gliricidia on the growth and biomass production of forages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siti Yuhaeni

    1998-12-01

    Full Text Available A study to evaluate the effect of different grass species and row spacing of gliricidia (Gliricidia sepium on the growth and biomass production of forages in an alley cropping system was conducted in two different agroclimatical zones i.e. Bogor, located at 500 m a .s .l . with an average annual rainfall of 3,112 nun/year and Sukabumi located at 900 m a .s .l . with an average annual rainfall of 1,402 mm/year . Both locations have low N, P, and K content and the soil is classified as acidic. The experimental design used was a split plot design with 3 replicates . The main plots were different grass species i.e. king grass (Pennisetum purpureum x P. typhoides and elephant grass (P. purpureum. The sub plots were the row spacing of gliricidia at 2, 3, 4, 6 m (1 hedgerows and 4 m (2 hedgerows. The results indicated that the growth and biomass production of grasses were significantly affected (P<0 .05 by the treatments in Bogor. The highest biomass productions was obtained from the 2 m row spacing which gave the highest dry matter production of grasses (1 .65 kg/hill and gliricidia (0 .086 kg/tree . In Sukabumi the growth and biomass production of grasses and gliricidia were also significantly affected by the treatments . The highest dry matter production was obtained with 2 m row spacing (dry matter of grasses and gliricidia were 1 .12 kg/hill and 0 .026 kg/tree, respectively . The result further indicated that biomass production of forages increased with the increase in gliricidia population. The alley cropping system wich is suitable for Bogor was the 2 m row spacing of gliricidia intercropped with either king or elephant grass and for Sukabumi 2 and 4 m (2 rows of gliricidia row spacing intercropped with king or elephant grass .

  1. Comparative mapping of the wild perennial Glycine latifolia and soybean (G. max reveals extensive chromosome rearrangements in the genus Glycine.

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    Sungyul Chang

    Full Text Available Soybean (Glycine max L. Mer., like many cultivated crops, has a relatively narrow genetic base and lacks diversity for some economically important traits. Glycine latifolia (Benth. Newell & Hymowitz, one of the 26 perennial wild Glycine species related to soybean in the subgenus Glycine Willd., shows high levels of resistance to multiple soybean pathogens and pests including Alfalfa mosaic virus, Heterodera glycines Ichinohe and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum (Lib. de Bary. However, limited information is available on the genomes of these perennial Glycine species. To generate molecular resources for gene mapping and identification, high-density linkage maps were constructed for G. latifolia using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP markers generated by genotyping by sequencing and evaluated in an F2 population and confirmed in an F5 population. In each population, greater than 2,300 SNP markers were selected for analysis and segregated to form 20 large linkage groups. Marker orders were similar in the F2 and F5 populations. The relationships between G. latifolia linkage groups and G. max and common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L. chromosomes were examined by aligning SNP-containing sequences from G. latifolia to the genome sequences of G. max and P. vulgaris. Twelve of the 20 G. latifolia linkage groups were nearly collinear with G. max chromosomes. The remaining eight G. latifolia linkage groups appeared to be products of multiple interchromosomal translocations relative to G. max. Large syntenic blocks also were observed between G. latifolia and P. vulgaris. These experiments are the first to compare genome organizations among annual and perennial Glycine species and common bean. The development of molecular resources for species closely related to G. max provides information into the evolution of genomes within the genus Glycine and tools to identify genes within perennial wild relatives of cultivated soybean that could be beneficial to soybean

  2. Shearwater foraging in the Southern Ocean: the roles of prey availability and winds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Raymond

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Sooty (Puffinus griseus and short-tailed (P. tenuirostris shearwaters are abundant seabirds that range widely across global oceans. Understanding the foraging ecology of these species in the Southern Ocean is important for monitoring and ecosystem conservation and management. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Tracking data from sooty and short-tailed shearwaters from three regions of New Zealand and Australia were combined with at-sea observations of shearwaters in the Southern Ocean, physical oceanography, near-surface copepod distributions, pelagic trawl data, and synoptic near-surface winds. Shearwaters from all three regions foraged in the Polar Front zone, and showed particular overlap in the region around 140 degrees E. Short-tailed shearwaters from South Australia also foraged in Antarctic waters south of the Polar Front. The spatial distribution of shearwater foraging effort in the Polar Front zone was matched by patterns in large-scale upwelling, primary production, and abundances of copepods and myctophid fish. Oceanic winds were found to be broad determinants of foraging distribution, and of the flight paths taken by the birds on long foraging trips to Antarctic waters. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The shearwaters displayed foraging site fidelity and overlap of foraging habitat between species and populations that may enhance their utility as indicators of Southern Ocean ecosystems. The results highlight the importance of upwellings due to interactions of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current with large-scale bottom topography, and the corresponding localised increases in the productivity of the Polar Front ecosystem.

  3. Nutrient and energy content, in vitro ruminal fermentation characteristics and methanogenic potential of alpine forage plant species during early summer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayanegara, Anuraga; Marquardt, Svenja; Kreuzer, Michael; Leiber, Florian

    2011-08-15

    Plants growing on alpine meadows are reported to be rich in phenols. Such compounds may affect ruminal fermentation and reduce the plants' methanogenic potential, making alpine grazing advantageous in this respect. The objective of this study was to quantify nutrients and phenols in Alpine forage grasses, herbs and trees collected over 2 years and, in a 24 h in vitro incubation, their effects on ruminal fermentation parameters. The highest in vitro gas production, resulting in metabolisable energy values around 10 MJ kg⁻¹, were found with Alchemilla xanthochlora and Crepis aurea (herbaceous species) and with Sambucus nigra leaves and flowers (tree species). Related to the amount of total gas production, methane formation was highest with Nardus stricta, and lowest with S. nigra and A. xanthochlora. In addition, Castanea sativa leaves led to an exceptional low methane production, but this was accompanied by severely impaired ruminal fermentation. When the data were analysed by principal component analysis, phenol concentrations were negatively related with methane proportion in total gas. Variation in methane production potential across the investigated forages was small. The two goals of limited methane production potential and high nutritive value for ruminants were met best by A. xanthochlora and S. nigra. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry.

  4. Foraging ecology as related to the distribution of planktivorous auklets in the Bering Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, George L.; Harrison, Nancy M.; Piatt, John F.

    1993-01-01

    We review recent accounts of the foraging ecologies of  five species of small auklets found in the Bering Sea. These birds eat a wide variety of zooplankton and micronekton. Least Auklets Aethia pusilla and Whiskered Auklets A. pygmaea, as far as is known, primarily eat copepods, whereas Created Auklets A. cristatella appear to specialize on euphausiids, at least during the breeding season. The diet of Parakeet Auklets Cyclorrhynchus psittacula is much broader than that of most other Aethia species, and includes many gelatinous species and their commensals. Little is known of the diet of Cassin's Auklet Ptychoramphus aleuticus in the Bering Sea, although elsewhere they take large copepods, euphausiids, and larval fish.There are considerable differences in the at-sea distributions and foraging behaviors of these five species of auklet. Least Auklets in the norhtern Bering Sea concentrate their foraging activities over strongly stratified water and near fronts where pycnoclines may approach the surface. In the Aleutian Islands, Least Auklets forage where oceanic and tidal currents strike the shelf between the islands and rise toward the surface carrying plankton. Least Auklets and Crested Auklets are often found in large flocks, whereas Parakeet Auklets are rarely found in groups of more than three birds and are usually widely dispersed. The few at-sea observations of Whiskered Auklets have been of small flocks in turbulent waters of island passes. We relate prey types taken, foraging dispersion, and the use of hydrographic features by these auklet species.

  5. PERENNIAL HELIANTHUS TAXA IN TÂRGU-MURES CITY AND ITS SURROUNDINGS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FILEP RITA

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Although in the neighbouring countries several perennial Helianthus taxa have been recorded in the last decade, in Romania only three have been identified so far. The literature and herbaria data of Târgu-Mures date back to the end of the XIXth century, and only refer to H. × multiflorus and H. tuberosus. The aim of this study was to identify the perennial Helianthus taxa in this region and to prepare their current distribution map. The survey was conducted in Târgu Mures city and the neighbouring villages: Livezeni, Sântana de Mures, Sâncraiu de Mures, Sângeorgiu de Mures, and Corunca. Four taxa were identified: H. pauciflorus Nutt., H. × laetiflorus Pers., H. tuberosus L. s.str., and Helianthus tuberosus L. s.l. The first two taxa are cultivated as ornamental plants, H. tuberosus s. str. is cultivated in a few farms, whereas H. tuberosus s. l. is an invasive species that spreads along the rivers.

  6. Foraging Activity in Plebeia remota, a Stingless Bees Species, Is Influenced by the Reproductive State of a Colony

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrícia Nunes-Silva

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Colonies of the Brazilian stingless bee Plebeia remota show a reproductive diapause in autumn and winter. Therefore, they present two distinct reproductive states, during which colony needs are putatively different. Consequently, foraging should be adapted to the different needs. We recorded the foraging activity of two colonies for 30 days in both phases. Indeed, it presented different patterns during the two phases. In the reproductive diapause, the resource predominantly collected by the foragers was nectar. The majority of the bees were nectar foragers, and the peak of collecting activity occurred around noon. Instead, in the reproductive phase, the predominantly collected resource was pollen, and the peak of activity occurred around 10:00 am. Although the majority of the foragers were not specialized in this phase, there were a larger number of pollen foragers compared to the phase of reproductive diapause. The temperature and relative humidity also influenced the foraging activity.

  7. A molecular phylogeny of Dorylus army ants provides evidence for multiple evolutionary transitions in foraging niche

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vilhelmsen Lars B

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Army ants are the prime arthropod predators in tropical forests, with huge colonies and an evolutionary derived nomadic life style. Five of the six recognized subgenera of Old World Dorylus army ants forage in the soil, whereas some species of the sixth subgenus (Anomma forage in the leaf-litter and some as conspicuous swarm raiders on the forest floor and in the lower vegetation (the infamous driver ants. Here we use a combination of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequences to reconstruct the phylogeny of the Dorylus s.l. army ants and to infer the evolutionary transitions in foraging niche and associated morphological adaptations. Results Underground foraging is basal and gave rise to leaf-litter foraging. Leaf-litter foraging in turn gave rise to two derived conditions: true surface foraging (the driver ants and a reversal to subterranean foraging (a clade with most of the extant Dorylus s.s. species. This means that neither the subgenus Anomma nor Dorylus s.s. is monophyletic, and that one of the Dorylus s.s. lineages adopted subterranean foraging secondarily. We show that this latter group evolved a series of morphological adaptations to underground foraging that are remarkably convergent to the basal state. Conclusion The evolutionary transitions in foraging niche were more complex than previously thought, but our comparative analysis of worker morphology lends strong support to the contention that particular foraging niches have selected for very specific worker morphologies. The surprising reversal to underground foraging is therefore a striking example of convergent morphological evolution.

  8. Effects of species diversity on seasonal variation in herbage yield and nutritive value of seven binary grass-legume mixtures and pure grass under cutting

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elgersma, Anjo; Søegaard, Karen

    2016-01-01

    Intensively managed sown temperate grasslands are generally of low species diversity, although swards based on grass-legume mixtures may have superior productivity and herbage quality than grass-only swards. We conducted a cutting experiment over two years to test the effect of species composition...... and diversity on herbage yield, contents of N, neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and in vitro organic matter digestibility (IVOMD). Perennial ryegrass (PR, Lolium perenne) was sown alone and with each of four forage legumes: red clover (RC, Trifolium pratense), lucerne (LU, Medicago sativa), birdsfoot trefoil (BT......, Lotus corniculatus) and white clover (WC, Trifolium repens); WC was also sown with hybrid ryegrass (HR, Lolium × boucheanum), meadow fescue (MF, Festuca pratensis) and timothy (TI, Phleum pratense). Herbage productivity was lowest in pure PR followed by PR/BT, and highest in PR/RC; this mixture had...

  9. Extending the shelf life of flower bulbs and perennials in consumer packages by modiefied atmosphere packaging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gude, H.; Dijkema, M.H.G.E.; Miller, C.T.

    2011-01-01

    The quality of flower bulbs and herbaceous perennials in consumer packages declines rapidly due to sprouting and drying out. The present study was undertaken to develop Modified Atmosphere Packages (MAP) with suitable filling materials for a prolonged shelf life of different species of flower bulbs

  10. Determination of microbial protein in perennial ryegrass silage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Driehuis, F.; Wikselaar, van P.G.

    2001-01-01

    The microbial matter fraction was determined in perennial ryegrass silages of different dry-matter (DM) contents, ensiled with or without Lactobacillus plantarum. 15N-Leucine and the bacterial cell wall constituent diaminopimelic acid (DAPA) were used as markers for microbial-N. Perennial ryegrass

  11. Climate and foraging mode explain interspecific variation in snake metabolic rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dupoué, Andréaz; Brischoux, François; Lourdais, Olivier

    2017-11-29

    The energy cost of self-maintenance is a critical facet of life-history strategies. Clarifying the determinant of interspecific variation in metabolic rate (MR) at rest is important to understand and predict ecological patterns such as species distributions or responses to climatic changes. We examined variation of MR in snakes, a group characterized by a remarkable diversity of activity rates and a wide distribution. We collated previously published MR data ( n = 491 observations) measured in 90 snake species at different trial temperatures. We tested for the effects of metabolic state (standard MR (SMR) versus resting MR (RMR)), foraging mode (active versus ambush foragers) and climate (temperature and precipitation) while accounting for non-independence owing to phylogeny, body mass and thermal dependence. We found that RMR was 40% higher than SMR, and that active foragers have higher MR than species that ambush their prey. We found that MR was higher in cold environments, supporting the metabolic cold adaptation hypothesis. We also found an additive and positive effect of precipitation on MR suggesting that lower MR in arid environments may decrease dehydration and energetic costs. Altogether, our findings underline the complex influences of climate and foraging mode on MR and emphasize the relevance of these facets to understand the physiological impact of climate change. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. Food of forage fishes in western Lake Erie, 1975-76

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muth, Kenneth M.; Busch, Wolf-Dieter N.

    1989-01-01

    In western Lake Erie in the summer and fall of 1975–1976, food eaten by seven forage fishes—emerald shiner (Notropis atherinoides), spottail shiner (Notropis hudsonius), trout-perch (Percopsis omiscomaycus), andyoung-of-the-year (YOY) of alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum), white bass (Morone chrysops), and freshwater drum (Aplodi-notus grunniens)—was divided among six major taxa: Cladocera, Copepoda, Diptera, Ostracoda, Amphipoda, and Algae. In addition, fish were eaten by YOY white bass, and Rotifera were consumed by YOY gizzard shad. Interspecies diet overlap indices, calculated to compare the food of the different species and to evaluate diet similarities, were usually highest for YOY white bass and YOY freshwater drum when compared with the other species and usually lowest between emerald shiners and all other forage fishes. Understanding the feeding interactions among fishes that could influence production at the forage-food level of the food web could provide insight into how cascading trophic interactions influence the production of piscivorous predators.

  13. Increasing evidence that bats actively forage at wind turbines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foo, Cecily F; Bennett, Victoria J; Hale, Amanda M; Korstian, Jennifer M; Schildt, Alison J; Williams, Dean A

    2017-01-01

    Although the ultimate causes of high bat fatalities at wind farms are not well understood, several lines of evidence suggest that bats are attracted to wind turbines. One hypothesis is that bats would be attracted to turbines as a foraging resource if the insects that bats prey upon are commonly present on and around the turbine towers. To investigate the role that foraging activity may play in bat fatalities, we conducted a series of surveys at a wind farm in the southern Great Plains of the US from 2011-2016. From acoustic monitoring we recorded foraging activity, including feeding buzzes indicative of prey capture, in the immediate vicinity of turbine towers from all six bat species known to be present at this site. From insect surveys we found Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, and Orthoptera in consistently high proportions over several years suggesting that food resources for bats were consistently available at wind turbines. We used DNA barcoding techniques to assess bat diet composition of (1) stomach contents from 47 eastern red bat ( Lasiurus borealis ) and 24 hoary bat ( Lasiurus cinereus ) carcasses collected in fatality searches, and (2) fecal pellets from 23 eastern red bats that were found on turbine towers, transformers, and tower doors. We found that the majority of the eastern red bat and hoary bat stomachs, the two bat species most commonly found in fatality searches at this site, were full or partially full, indicating that the bats were likely killed while foraging. Although Lepidoptera and Orthoptera dominated the diets of these two bat species, both consumed a range of prey items with individual bats having from one to six insect species in their stomachs at the time of death. The prey items identified from eastern red bat fecal pellets showed similar results. A comparison of the turbine insect community to the diet analysis results revealed that the most abundant insects at wind turbines, including terrestrial insects such as crickets and several

  14. Nutrient foraging strategies are associated with productivity and population growth in forest shrubs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caplan, Joshua S; Stone, Bram W G; Faillace, Cara A; Lafond, Jonathan J; Baumgarten, Joni M; Mozdzer, Thomas J; Dighton, John; Meiners, Scott J; Grabosky, Jason C; Ehrenfeld, Joan G

    2017-04-01

    Temperate deciduous forest understoreys are experiencing widespread changes in community composition, concurrent with increases in rates of nitrogen supply. These shifts in plant abundance may be driven by interspecific differences in nutrient foraging (i.e. conservative vs. acquisitive strategies) and, thus, adaptation to contemporary nutrient loading conditions. This study sought to determine if interspecific differences in nutrient foraging could help explain patterns of shrub success and decline in eastern North American forests. Using plants grown in a common garden, fine root traits associated with nutrient foraging were measured for six shrub species. Traits included the mean and skewness of the root diameter distribution, specific root length (SRL), C:N ratio, root tissue density, arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization and foraging precision. Above- and below-ground productivity were also determined for the same plants, and population growth rates were estimated using data from a long-term study of community dynamics. Root traits were compared among species and associations among root traits, measures of productivity and rates of population growth were evaluated. Species fell into groups having thick or thin root forms, which correspond to conservative vs. acquisitive nutrient foraging strategies. Interspecific variation in root morphology and tissue construction correlated with measures of productivity and rates of cover expansion. Of the four species with acquisitive traits, three were introduced species that have become invasive in recent decades, and the fourth was a weedy native. In contrast, the two species with conservative traits were historically dominant shrubs that have declined in abundance in eastern North American forests. In forest understoreys of eastern North America, elevated nutrient availability may impose a filter on species success in addition to above-ground processes such as herbivory and overstorey canopy conditions. Shrubs that have

  15. The effects of perennial ryegrass and alfalfa on microbial abundance and diversity in petroleum contaminated soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kirk, Jennifer L.; Klironomos, John N.; Lee, Hung; Trevors, Jack T.

    2005-01-01

    Enhanced rhizosphere degradation uses plants to stimulate the rhizosphere microbial community to degrade organic contaminants. We measured changes in microbial communities caused by the addition of two species of plants in a soil contaminated with 31,000 ppm of total petroleum hydrocarbons. Perennial ryegrass and/or alfalfa increased the number of rhizosphere bacteria in the hydrocarbon-contaminated soil. These plants also increased the number of bacteria capable of petroleum degradation as estimated by the most probable number (MPN) method. Eco-Biolog plates did not detect changes in metabolic diversity between bulk and rhizosphere samples but denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of PCR-amplified partial 16S rDNA sequences indicated a shift in the bacterial community in the rhizosphere samples. Dice coefficient matrices derived from DGGE profiles showed similarities between the rhizospheres of alfalfa and perennial ryegrass/alfalfa mixture in the contaminated soil at week seven. Perennial ryegrass and perennial ryegrass/alfalfa mixture caused the greatest change in the rhizosphere bacterial community as determined by DGGE analysis. We concluded that plants altered the microbial population; these changes were plant-specific and could contribute to degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in contaminated soil. - Plant-specific changes in microbial populations on roots affect degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in contaminated soil

  16. Variability of indigestible NDF in C 3 and C 4 forages and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The relationship between iNDF and acid detergent lignin (ADL) is more variable, across and within forage species. The purpose of our study was then to assess the variability of iNDF and respective implications on ration fine-tuning for dairy cattle. Sixty forages, including grasses, maize silages and lucerne hays, were ...

  17. Sediment-induced turbidity impairs foraging performance and prey choice of planktivorous coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, J L; Jones, G P

    2013-09-01

    Sedimentation is a substantial threat to aquatic ecosystems and a primary cause of habitat degradation on near-shore coral reefs. Although numerous studies have demonstrated major impacts of sedimentation and turbidity on corals, virtually nothing is known of the sensitivity of reef fishes. Planktivorous fishes are an important trophic group that funnels pelagic energy sources into reef ecosystems. These fishes are visual predators whose foraging is likely to be impaired by turbidity, but the threshold for such effects and their magnitude are unknown. This study examined the effect of sediment-induced turbidity on foraging in four species of planktivorous damselfishes (Pomacentridae) of the Great Barrier Reef, including inshore and offshore species that potentially differ in tolerance for turbidity. An experimental flow tunnel was used to quantify their ability to catch mobile and immobile planktonic prey under different levels of turbidity and velocity in the range encountered on natural and disturbed reefs. Turbidity of just 4 NTU (nephelometric turbidity units) reduced average attack success by up to 56%, with higher effect sizes for species with offshore distributions. Only the inshore species (Neopomacentrus bankieri), which frequently encounters this turbidity on coastal reefs, could maintain high prey capture success. At elevated turbidity similar to that found on disturbed reefs (8 NTU), attack success was reduced in all species examined by up to 69%. These reductions in attack success led to a 21-24% decrease in foraging rates for all mid to outer-shelf species, in spite of increasing attack rates at high turbidity. Although effects of turbidity varied among species, it always depended heavily on prey mobility and ambient velocity. Attack success was up to 14 times lower on mobile prey, leaving species relatively incapable of foraging on anything but immobile prey at high turbidity. Effects of turbidity were particularly prominent at higher velocities, as

  18. Seasonal variations of cadmium and zinc in Arrhenatherum elatius, a perennial grass species from highly contaminated soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deram, Annabelle; Denayer, Franck-Olivier; Petit, Daniel; Van Haluwyn, Chantal

    2006-01-01

    There is interest in studying bioaccumulation in plants because they form the base of the food chain as well as their potential use in phytoextraction. From this viewpoint, our study deals with the seasonal variation, from January to July, of Cd and Zn bioaccumulation in three metallicolous populations of Arrhenatherum elatius, a perennial grass with a high biomass production. In heavily polluted soils, while Zn bioaccumulation is weak, A. elatius accumulates more Cd than reported gramineous plants, with concentration of up to 100 μg g -1 . Our results also showed seasonal variations of bioaccumulation, underlying the necessity for in situ studies to specify the date of sampling and also the phenology of the collected plant sample. In our experimental conditions, accumulation is lower in June, leading us to the hypothesis of restriction in heavy metals translocation from roots to aerial parts during seed production. - Cd and Zn bioaccumulation varies seasonally in a perennial grass

  19. Seasonal variations of cadmium and zinc in Arrhenatherum elatius, a perennial grass species from highly contaminated soils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deram, Annabelle [Institut Lillois d' Ingenierie de la Sante, Universite Droit et Sante de Lille, EA 2690, 42 rue Ambroise Pare, 59120 Loos (France)]. E-mail: aderam@ilis.univ-lille2.fr; Denayer, Franck-Olivier [Institut Lillois d' Ingenierie de la Sante, Universite Droit et Sante de Lille, EA 2690, 42 rue Ambroise Pare, 59120 Loos (France); Petit, Daniel [Laboratoire de Genetique et Evolution des Populations Vegetales, UPRESA-CNRS 8016, Bat SN2, Universite des Sciences et Techniques de Lille, 59655 Villeneuve d' Ascq, F59655 France (France); Van Haluwyn, Chantal [Faculte des Sciences Pharmaceutiques et Biologiques, Departement de Botanique, Universite Droit et Sante de Lille, EA 2690, B.P. 83, 59006 Lille Cedex (France)

    2006-03-15

    There is interest in studying bioaccumulation in plants because they form the base of the food chain as well as their potential use in phytoextraction. From this viewpoint, our study deals with the seasonal variation, from January to July, of Cd and Zn bioaccumulation in three metallicolous populations of Arrhenatherum elatius, a perennial grass with a high biomass production. In heavily polluted soils, while Zn bioaccumulation is weak, A. elatius accumulates more Cd than reported gramineous plants, with concentration of up to 100 {mu}g g{sup -1}. Our results also showed seasonal variations of bioaccumulation, underlying the necessity for in situ studies to specify the date of sampling and also the phenology of the collected plant sample. In our experimental conditions, accumulation is lower in June, leading us to the hypothesis of restriction in heavy metals translocation from roots to aerial parts during seed production. - Cd and Zn bioaccumulation varies seasonally in a perennial grass.

  20. Perennial Grass Bioenergy Cropping on Wet Marginal Land

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Das, Srabani; Teuffer, Karin; Stoof, Cathelijne R.; Walter, Michael F.; Walter, M.T.; Steenhuis, Tammo S.; Richards, Brian K.

    2018-01-01

    The control of soil moisture, vegetation type, and prior land use on soil health parameters of perennial grass cropping systems on marginal lands is not well known. A fallow wetness-prone marginal site in New York (USA) was converted to perennial grass bioenergy feedstock production. Quadruplicate

  1. Diet variability of forage fishes in the Northern California Current System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Andrew D.; Daly, Elizabeth A.; Brodeur, Richard D.

    2015-06-01

    As fisheries management shifts to an ecosystem-based approach, understanding energy pathways and trophic relationships in the Northern California Current (NCC) will become increasingly important for predictive modeling and understanding ecosystem response to changing ocean conditions. In the NCC, pelagic forage fishes are a critical link between seasonal and interannual variation in primary production and upper trophic groups. We compared diets among dominant forage fish (sardines, anchovies, herring, and smelts) in the NCC collected in May and June of 2011 and June 2012, and found high diet variability between and within species on seasonal and annual time scales, and also on decadal scales when compared to results of past studies conducted in the early 2000s. Copepoda were a large proportion by weight of several forage fish diets in 2011 and 2012, which differed from a preponderance of Euphausiidae found in previous studies, even though all years exhibited cool ocean conditions. We also examined diet overlap among these species and with co-occurring subyearling Chinook salmon and found that surf smelt diets overlapped more with subyearling Chinook diets than any other forage fish. Herring and sardine diets overlapped the most with each other in our interdecadal comparisons and some prey items were common to all forage fish diets. Forage fish that show plasticity in diet may be more adapted to ocean conditions of low productivity or anomalous prey fields. These findings highlight the variable and not well-understood connections between ocean conditions and energy pathways within the NCC.

  2. Turbidity interferes with foraging success of visual but not chemosensory predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunt, Jessica; Smee, Delbert L

    2015-01-01

    Predation can significantly affect prey populations and communities, but predator effects can be attenuated when abiotic conditions interfere with foraging activities. In estuarine communities, turbidity can affect species richness and abundance and is changing in many areas because of coastal development. Many fish species are less efficient foragers in turbid waters, and previous research revealed that in elevated turbidity, fish are less abundant whereas crabs and shrimp are more abundant. We hypothesized that turbidity altered predatory interactions in estuaries by interfering with visually-foraging predators and prey but not with organisms relying on chemoreception. We measured the effects of turbidity on the predation rates of two model predators: a visual predator (pinfish, Lagodon rhomboides) and a chemosensory predator (blue crabs, Callinectes sapidus) in clear and turbid water (0 and ∼100 nephelometric turbidity units). Feeding assays were conducted with two prey items, mud crabs (Panopeus spp.) that rely heavily on chemoreception to detect predators, and brown shrimp (Farfantepenaus aztecus) that use both chemical and visual cues for predator detection. Because turbidity reduced pinfish foraging on both mud crabs and shrimp, the changes in predation rates are likely driven by turbidity attenuating fish foraging ability and not by affecting prey vulnerability to fish consumers. Blue crab foraging was unaffected by turbidity, and blue crabs were able to successfully consume nearly all mud crab and shrimp prey. Turbidity can influence predator-prey interactions by reducing the feeding efficiency of visual predators, providing a competitive advantage to chemosensory predators, and altering top-down control in food webs.

  3. The energetic importance of night foraging for waders wintering in a temperate estuary

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lourenco, Pedro M.; Silva, Andreia; Santos, Carlos D.; Miranda, Ana C.; Granadeiro, Jose P.; Palmeirim, Jorge M.

    2008-01-01

    Many species of waders forage extensively at night, but there is very little information on the relevance of this behaviour for the energy budget of waders wintering in estuarine wetlands. Quantitative data on diurnal and nocturnal intake rates can indicate the extent to which birds need to forage

  4. Changes in forage lichen biomass after insect outbreaks and fuel reduction treatment in the Blue Mountains, Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce McCune; Sarah Jovan; Amanda. Hardman

    2008-01-01

    Forage lichens are pendulous, hairlike species eaten by a wide range of mammals. Our overall goal was to estimate losses of Bryoria, a genus of ecologically important forage species, in forests subjected to disease and fuel reduction treatments at Starkey Experimental Forest in the Blue Mountains of northeastern Oregon. Specific objectives were to...

  5. Effects of stored feed cropping systems and farm size on the profitability of Maine organic dairy farm simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoshide, A K; Halloran, J M; Kersbergen, R J; Griffin, T S; DeFauw, S L; LaGasse, B J; Jain, S

    2011-11-01

    United States organic dairy production has increased to meet the growing demand for organic milk. Despite higher prices received for milk, organic dairy farmers have come under increasing financial stress due to increases in concentrated feed prices over the past few years, which can make up one-third of variable costs. Market demand for milk has also leveled in the last year, resulting in some downward pressure on prices paid to dairy farmers. Organic dairy farmers in the Northeast United States have experimented with growing different forage and grain crops to maximize on-farm production of protein and energy to improve profitability. Three representative organic feed systems were simulated using the integrated farm system model for farms with 30, 120, and 220 milk cows. Increasing intensity of equipment use was represented by organic dairy farms growing only perennial sod (low) to those with corn-based forage systems, which purchase supplemental grain (medium) or which produce and feed soybeans (high). The relative profitability of these 3 organic feed systems was strongly dependent on dairy farm size. From results, we suggest smaller organic dairy farms can be more profitable with perennial sod-based rather than corn-based forage systems due to lower fixed costs from using only equipment associated with perennial forage harvest and storage. The largest farm size was more profitable using a corn-based system due to greater economies of scale for growing soybeans, corn grain, winter cereals, and corn silages. At an intermediate farm size of 120 cows, corn-based forage systems were more profitable if perennial sod was not harvested at optimum quality, corn was grown on better soils, or if milk yield was 10% higher. Delayed harvest decreased the protein and energy content of perennial sod crops, requiring more purchased grain to balance the ration and resulting in lower profits. Corn-based systems were less affected by lower perennial forage quality, as corn silage

  6. Seasonal Food Scarcity Prompts Long-Distance Foraging by a Wild Social Bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Nathaniel S; Jha, Shalene

    2018-01-01

    Foraging is an essential process for mobile animals, and its optimization serves as a foundational theory in ecology and evolution; however, drivers of foraging are rarely investigated across landscapes and seasons. Using a common bumblebee species from the western United States (Bombus vosnesenskii), we ask whether seasonal decreases in food resources prompt changes in foraging behavior and space use. We employ a unique integration of population genetic tools and spatially explicit foraging models to estimate foraging distances and rates of patch visitation for wild bumblebee colonies across three study regions and two seasons. By mapping the locations of 669 wild-caught individual foragers, we find substantial variation in colony-level foraging distances, often exhibiting a 60-fold difference within a study region. Our analysis of visitation rates indicates that foragers display a preference for destination patches with high floral cover and forage significantly farther for these patches, but only in the summer, when landscape-level resources are low. Overall, these results indicate that an increasing proportion of long-distance foraging bouts take place in the summer. Because wild bees are pollinators, their foraging dynamics are of urgent concern, given the potential impacts of global change on their movement and services. The behavioral shift toward long-distance foraging with seasonal declines in food resources suggests a novel, phenologically directed approach to landscape-level pollinator conservation and greater consideration of late-season floral resources in pollinator habitat management.

  7. Foraging behavioral of Phylloscartes ventralis (Aves, Tyrannidae in native and planted forests of southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André de Mendonça-Lima

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Few studies have related the effects of silviculture practices to the behavior of bird species in the Neotropics. The present study examined the foraging behavior of Phylloscartes ventralis (Temminck, 1824 in a native forest and in silviculture areas of Pinus elliotti and Araucaria angustifolia with different structures and ages. We tested two general hypotheses: (1 areas of commercial forest plantation change the foraging behavior of P. ventralis in relation to native forest, and (2 the foraging behavior of P. ventralis in silviculture areas with understories (complex structures is different from its behavior in areas without understory. The results showed that P. ventralis changed its foraging behavior depending on the type of forest, and on the presence of an understory in silviculture areas. Main changes involved the height and angle of substrate where the prey was captured. Phylloscartes ventralis showed the same set of attack maneuvers, with more maneuvers type in young Pinus planted without understory. The frequency of use of attack maneuvers was more similar in areas of silviculture with understory and in the native forest. The results highlight the importance of an understory structure and the utilization of native plant species in silviculture practices, to the foraging behavior of native bird species.

  8. Heat Damaged Forages: Effects on Forage Quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traditionally, heat damage in forages has been associated with alterations in forage protein quality as a result of Maillard reactions, and most producers and nutritionists are familiar with this concept. However, this is not necessarily the most important negative consequence of spontaneous heating...

  9. Puffins reveal contrasting relationships between forage fish and ocean climate in the North Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydeman, William J.; Piatt, John F.; Thompson, Sarah Ann; Garcia-Reyes, Marisol; Hatch, Scott A.; Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Slater, Leslie; Williams, Jeffrey C.; Rojek, Nora A.; Zador, Stephani G.; Renner, Heather M.

    2017-01-01

    Long-term studies of predator food habits (i.e., ‘predator-based sampling’) are useful for identifying patterns of spatial and temporal variability of forage nekton in marine ecosystems. We investigated temporal changes in forage fish availability and relationships to ocean climate by analyzing diet composition of three puffin species (horned puffin Fratercula corniculata, tufted puffin Fratercula cirrhata, and rhinoceros auklet Cerorhinca monocerata) from five sites in the North Pacific from 1978–2012. Dominant forage species included squids and hexagrammids in the western Aleutians, gadids and Pacific sand lance (Ammodytes personatus) in the eastern Aleutians and western Gulf of Alaska (GoA), and sand lance and capelin (Mallotus villosus) in the northern and eastern GoA. Interannual fluctuations in forage availability dominated variability in the western Aleutians, whereas lower-frequency shifts in forage fish availability dominated elsewhere. We produced regional multivariate indicators of sand lance, capelin, and age-0 gadid availability by combining data across species and sites using Principal Component Analysis, and related these indices to environmental factors including sea level pressure (SPL), winds, and sea surface temperature (SST). There was coherence in the availability of sand lance and capelin across the study area. Sand lance availability increased linearly with environmental conditions leading to warmer ocean temperatures, whereas capelin availability increased in a non-linear manner when environmental changes led to lower ocean temperatures. Long-term studies of puffin diet composition appear to be a promising tool for understanding the availability of these difficult-to-survey forage nekton in remote regions of the North Pacific.

  10. Improved fructan accumulation in perennial ryegrass transformed with the onion fructosyltransferase genes 1-SST and 6G-FFT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gadegaard, Gitte; Didion, Thomas; Foiling, Marianne

    2008-01-01

    Carbohydrate limitation has been identified as a main cause of inefficient nitrogen use in ruminant animals, which feed mainly on fresh forage, hay and silage. This inefficiency results in suboptimal meat and milk productivity. One important molecular breeding strategy is to improve the nutritional...... value of ryegrass (Lolium perenne) by increasing the fructan content through expression of heterologous fructan biosynthetic genes. We developed perennial ryegrass Lines expressing sucrose:sucrose 1-fructosyltransferase and fructan:fructan 6G-fructosyltransferase genes from onion (Allium cepa) which...... exhibited up to a 3-fold increased fructan content. Further, the high fructan content was stable during the growth period, whereas the fructan content in an elite variety, marketed as a high sugar variety, dropped rapidly after reaching its maximum and subsequently remained low. (c) 2007 Elsevier GmbH. ALL...

  11. Foraging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ydenberg, R.C.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    This chapter describes the role played by behavioural adjustments to foraging behaviour in accommodating rapid environmental change. It looks into the adjustments of foraging behaviour to predation danger as a result of changes in the type and array of food available. It investigates the effects of

  12. Heavy metals effects on forage crops yields and estimation of elements accumulation in plants as affected by soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grytsyuk, N.; Arapis, G.; Perepelyatnikova, L.; Ivanova, T.; Vynograds'ka, V.

    2006-01-01

    Heavy metals (Cu, Cd, Pb, Zn) effect on the productivity of forage crops (clover and perennial cereal grasses) and their accumulation in plants, depending on the concentration of these elements in a soil, has been studied in micro-field experiments on three types of soil. The principle objective was to determine regularities of heavy metals migration in a soil-plant system aiming the estimation of permissible levels of heavy metals content in soils with the following elaboration of methods, which regulate the toxicants transfer to plants. Methods of field experiments, agrochemical and atomic absorption analysis were used. Results were statistically treated by Statistica 6.0, S-Plus 6. Experimental results have shown that the intensity of heavy metals accumulation in plants depends on the type of the soil, the species of plants, the physicochemical properties of heavy metals and their content in the soil. Logarithmic interdependency of heavy metals concentration in soils and their accumulation in plants is suggested. However, the strong correlation between the different heavy metals concentrations in the various soils and the yield of crops was not observed. Toxicants accumulation in crops decreased in time

  13. Heavy metals effects on forage crops yields and estimation of elements accumulation in plants as affected by soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grytsyuk, N; Arapis, G; Perepelyatnikova, L; Ivanova, T; Vynograds'ka, V

    2006-02-01

    Heavy metals (Cu, Cd, Pb, Zn) effect on the productivity of forage crops (clover and perennial cereal grasses) and their accumulation in plants, depending on the concentration of these elements in a soil, has been studied in micro-field experiments on three types of soil. The principle objective was to determine regularities of heavy metals migration in a soil-plant system aiming the estimation of permissible levels of heavy metals content in soils with the following elaboration of methods, which regulate the toxicants transfer to plants. Methods of field experiments, agrochemical and atomic absorption analysis were used. Results were statistically treated by Statistica 6.0, S-Plus 6. Experimental results have shown that the intensity of heavy metals accumulation in plants depends on the type of the soil, the species of plants, the physicochemical properties of heavy metals and their content in the soil. Logarithmic interdependency of heavy metals concentration in soils and their accumulation in plants is suggested. However, the strong correlation between the different heavy metals concentrations in the various soils and the yield of crops was not observed. Toxicants accumulation in crops decreased in time.

  14. Forage yield of berseem (Trifolium alaxandrium) as affected by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jane

    2011-10-17

    Oct 17, 2011 ... wheat straw is traditionally fed during winter and spring. *Corresponding author. E-mail: ijaz132@yahoo.co.uk. In irrigated areas of Pakistan where although green. fodder is a traditional crop, only a few local fodder species and varieties are in widespread use. The ability of the given forage species to ...

  15. Optimally frugal foraging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bénichou, O.; Bhat, U.; Krapivsky, P. L.; Redner, S.

    2018-02-01

    We introduce the frugal foraging model in which a forager performs a discrete-time random walk on a lattice in which each site initially contains S food units. The forager metabolizes one unit of food at each step and starves to death when it last ate S steps in the past. Whenever the forager eats, it consumes all food at its current site and this site remains empty forever (no food replenishment). The crucial property of the forager is that it is frugal and eats only when encountering food within at most k steps of starvation. We compute the average lifetime analytically as a function of the frugality threshold and show that there exists an optimal strategy, namely, an optimal frugality threshold k* that maximizes the forager lifetime.

  16. Foraging strategies of the Galapagos Marine Iguana (Amblyrhynchus Cristatus): adapting behavioral rules to ontogenetic size change

    OpenAIRE

    Wikelski, Martin; Trillmich, Fritz

    1994-01-01

    Ontogenetic development in reptiles entails major changes in size-related foraging options. We studied the changes in foraging behavior of marine iguanas. In this species, size increases about twenty- to hundredfold from hatching to full adult size. The foraging strategy of marine iguanas was studied at Miedo on Santa Fe Island in the Galapagos archipelago During low tide, large marine iguanas (>250 mm snout vent length (SVL)) foraged more in the lower intertidal than small ones (

  17. Seasonal versus perennial immunotherapy: evaluation after three years of treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz Lejarazu, D; Bernaola, G; Fernández, E; Audícana, M; Ventas, P; Martín, S; Fernández de Corres, L

    1993-01-01

    We have performed a comparative study to evaluate seasonal and perennial schedules after 3 years of immunotherapy. Sixty patients suffering from rhinitis and/or asthma due to grass pollen sensitization were randomly allocated to receive a semi-depot extract of Phleum pratense according to a perennial or seasonal schedule. The last year of the study, 14 patients were recruited as a control group without immunotherapy. The cumulative dose was 602 BU in the perennial group and 372 BU in the seasonal group. The frequency and severity of side-effects were similar and very low in both treated groups. The IgE level was significantly lower after perennial immunotherapy at the end of the first 2 years. A seasonal decrease in specific IgG levels was observed in patients who interrupted immunotherapy, while this was not observed in patients under the perennial schedule. Symptoms and medication scores did not show differences between groups. Nevertheless, we found a significant difference between treated patients and the control group.

  18. Morphological and agronomical characterization and estimates of genetic parameters of sesbania Scop. (Leguminosae accessions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veasey E.A.

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Twenty-two accessions of seven Sesbania (Leguminosae species: S. emerus, S. rostrata, S. tetraptera, S. exasperata (annuals, S. grandiflora, S. sesban and S. virgata (perennials, used for ruminant fodder, firewood, wood products, soil improvement, and human food, were investigated, with the aim of characterizing both inter- and intraspecific genetic variability, estimating genetic parameters for the characters evaluated and appraising the forage potential of the accessions. These were planted at the Instituto de Zootecnia, Nova Odessa, SP, Brazil, in a randomized complete block design with 22 treatments and four replications. Seventeen morphological and 17 agronomic characters were evaluated. Genetic parameters coefficient of intraspecific genetic diversity (bi and coefficient of intraspecific genetic variation (CVgi were obtained for the species represented by more than one accession. Highly significant differences were observed among as well as within species for most characters, showing considerable genetic variability. S. exasperata showed intraspecific genetic variability for the largest number of morphological characters. The same was observed for S. sesban for the agronomic characters. Most of the characters gave high bi values, above 0.80, indicating the possibility of selecting superior genotypes. The CVgi values, on the other hand, which indicate the magnitude of the existing genetic variability relative to the character mean, varied according to the species and character evaluated. Differences between annual and perennial species were observed, with higher biomass yields presented by the annuals at the first cut and by the perennials after the second cut, reaching the highest yield at the third cut. The annual species had higher seed production. Accession NO 934 of S. sesban gave the highest biomass yields and regrowth vigor, showing promise as a forage legume plant.

  19. Nutritional Characteristics of Forage Grown in South of Benin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadia Musco

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In order to provide recommendations on the most useful forage species to smallholder farmers, eleven grass and eleven legume forages grown in Abomey-Calavi in Republic of Benin were investigated for nutritive value (i.e. chemical composition and energy content and fermentation characteristics (i.e. gas and volatile fatty acid production, organic matter degradability. The in vitro gas production technique was used, incubating the forages for 120 h under anaerobic condition with buffalo rumen fluid. Compared to legume, tropical grass forages showed lower energy (8.07 vs 10.57 MJ/kg dry matter [DM] and crude protein level (16.10% vs 19.91% DM and higher cell wall content (neutral detergent fiber: 63.8% vs 40.45% DM, respectively. In grass forages, the chemical composition showed a quite high crude protein content; the in vitro degradability was slightly lower than the range of tropical pasture. The woody legumes were richer in protein and energy and lower in structural carbohydrates than herbaceous plants, however, their in vitro results are influenced by the presence of complex compounds (i.e. tannins. Significant correlations were found between chemical composition and in vitro fermentation characteristics. The in vitro gas production method appears to be a suitable technique for the evaluation of the nutritive value of forages in developing countries.

  20. Niche separation in flycatcher-like species in the lowland rainforests of Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Ramli, Rosli

    2017-07-01

    Niche theory suggests that sympatric species reduce interspecific competition through segregation of shared resources by adopting different attack manoeuvres. However, the fact that flycatcher-like bird species exclusively use the sally manoeuvre may thus challenge this view. We studied the foraging ecology of three flycatcher-like species (i.e. Paradise-flycatcher Terpsiphone sp., Black-naped Monarch Hypothymis azurea, and Rufous-winged Philentoma Philentoma pyrhoptera) in the Krau Wildlife Reserve in central Peninsular Malaysia. We investigated foraging preferences of each bird species and the potential niche partitioning via spatial or behavioural segregation. Foraging substrate was important parameter that effectively divided paradise-flycatcher from Black-naped Monarch and Rufous-winged Philentoma, where monarch and philentoma foraged mainly on live green leaves, while paradise-flycatcher foraged on the air. They also exhibited different foraging height preferences. Paradise-flycatcher, for instance, preferred the highest studied strata, while Black-naped Monarch foraged mostly in lower strata, and Rufous-winged Philentoma made use of the lowest strata. This study indicates that niche segregation occurs among sympatric species through foraging substrate and attack manoeuvres selection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Resource heterogeneity and foraging behaviour of cattle across spatial scales

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Demment Montague W

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding the mechanisms that influence grazing selectivity in patchy environments is vital to promote sustainable production and conservation of cultivated and natural grasslands. To better understand how patch size and spatial dynamics influence selectivity in cattle, we examined grazing selectivity under 9 different treatments by offering alfalfa and fescue in patches of 3 sizes spaced with 1, 4, and 8 m between patches along an alley. We hypothesized that (1 selectivity is driven by preference for the forage species that maximizes forage intake over feeding scales ranging from single bites to patches along grazing paths, (2 that increasing patch size enhances selectivity for the preferred species, and that (3 increasing distances between patches restricts selectivity because of the aggregation of scale-specific behaviours across foraging scales. Results Cows preferred and selected alfalfa, the species that yielded greater short-term intake rates (P Conclusion We conclude that patch size and spacing affect components of intake rate and, to a lesser extent, the selectivity of livestock at lower hierarchies of the grazing process, particularly by enticing livestock to make more even use of the available species as patches are spaced further apart. Thus, modifications in the spatial pattern of plant patches along with reductions in the temporal and spatial allocation of grazing may offer opportunities to improve uniformity of grazing by livestock and help sustain biodiversity and stability of plant communities.

  2. A molecular phylogeny of Dorylus army ants provides evidence for multiple evolutionary transitions in foraging niche

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, Daniel J C; Schöning, Caspar; Vilhelmsen, Lars

    2007-01-01

    in the leaf-litter and some as conspicuous swarm raiders on the forest floor and in the lower vegetation (the infamous driver ants). Here we use a combination of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequences to reconstruct the phylogeny of the Dorylus s.l. army ants and to infer the evolutionary transitions...... in foraging niche and associated morphological adaptations. RESULTS: Underground foraging is basal and gave rise to leaf-litter foraging. Leaf-litter foraging in turn gave rise to two derived conditions: true surface foraging (the driver ants) and a reversal to subterranean foraging (a clade with most......BACKGROUND: Army ants are the prime arthropod predators in tropical forests, with huge colonies and an evolutionary derived nomadic life style. Five of the six recognized subgenera of Old World Dorylus army ants forage in the soil, whereas some species of the sixth subgenus (Anomma) forage...

  3. Does a decade of elevated [CO2] affect a desert perennial plant community?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newingham, Beth A; Vanier, Cheryl H; Kelly, Lauren J; Charlet, Therese N; Smith, Stanley D

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the effects of elevated [CO2 ] on plant community structure is crucial to predicting ecosystem responses to global change. Early predictions suggested that productivity in deserts would increase via enhanced water-use efficiency under elevated [CO2], but the response of intact arid plant communities to elevated [CO2 ] is largely unknown. We measured changes in perennial plant community characteristics (cover, species richness and diversity) after 10 yr of elevated [CO2] exposure in an intact Mojave Desert community at the Nevada Desert Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) Facility. Contrary to expectations, total cover, species richness, and diversity were not affected by elevated [CO2]. Over the course of the experiment, elevated [CO2] had no effect on changes in cover of the evergreen C3 shrub, Larrea tridentata; alleviated decreases in cover of the C4 bunchgrass, Pleuraphis rigida; and slightly reduced the cover of C3 drought-deciduous shrubs. Thus, we generally found no effect of elevated [CO2] on plant communities in this arid ecosystem. Extended drought, slow plant growth rates, and highly episodic germination and recruitment of new individuals explain the lack of strong perennial plant community shifts after a decade of elevated [CO2]. © 2013 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2013 New Phytologist Trust.

  4. Root Characteristics of Perennial Warm-Season Grasslands Managed for Grazing and Biomass Production

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    Rattan Lal

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Minirhizotrons were used to study root growth characteristics in recently established fields dominated by perennial C4-grasses that were managed either for cattle grazing or biomass production for bioenergy in Virginia, USA. Measurements over a 13-month period showed that grazing resulted in smaller total root volumes and root diameters. Under biomass management, root volume was 40% higher (49 vs. 35 mm3 and diameters were 20% larger (0.29 vs. 0.24 mm compared to grazing. While total root length did not differ between grazed and biomass treatments, root distribution was shallower under grazed areas, with 50% of total root length in the top 7 cm of soil, compared to 41% in ungrazed exclosures. These changes (i.e., longer roots and greater root volume in the top 10 cm of soil under grazing but the reverse at 17–28 cm soil depths were likely caused by a shift in plant species composition as grazing reduced C4 grass biomass and allowed invasion of annual unsown species. The data suggest that management of perennial C4 grasslands for either grazing or biomass production can affect root growth in different ways and this, in turn, may have implications for the subsequent carbon sequestration potential of these grasslands.

  5. Foraging decisions, patch use, and seasonality in egrets (Aves: ciconiiformes)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erwin, R.M.

    1985-01-01

    Feeding snowy (Egretta thula) and great (Casmerodius albus) egrets were observed during 2 breeding seasons in coastal New Jersey and 2 brief winter periods in northeast Florida (USA). A number of tests based on assumptions of foraging models, predictions from foraging theory, and earlier empirical tests concerning time allocation and movement in foraging patches was made. Few of the expectations based on foraging theory and/or assumptions were supported by the empirical evidence. Snowy egrets fed with greater intensity and efficiency during the breeding season (when young were being fed) than during winter. They also showed some tendency to leave patches when their capture rate declined, and they spent more time foraging in patches when other birds were present nearby. Great egrets showed few of these tendencies, although they did leave patches when their intercapture intervals increased. Satiation differences had some influence on feeding rates in snowy egrets, but only at the end of feeding bouts. Some individuals of both species revisited areas in patches that had recently been exploited, and success rates were usually higher after the 2nd visit. Apparently, for predators of active prey, short-term changes in resource availability ('resource depression') may be more important than resource depletion, a common assumption in most optimal foraging theory models.

  6. Host Plants Affect the Foraging Success of Two Parasitoids that Attack Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (Walker (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae.

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    Yi Feng

    Full Text Available The light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana is a key pest of wine grapes in Australia. Two parasitoids, Dolichogenidea tasmanica and Therophilus unimaculatus, attack the larval stage of this pest. D. tasmanica is dominant in vineyards, whereas T. unimaculatus is mainly active in native vegetation. We sought to understand why they differ in their use of habitats. Plants are a major component of habitats of parasitoids, and herbivore-infested plants influence parasitoid foraging efficiency by their architecture and emission of volatile chemicals. We investigated how different plant species infested by E. postvittana could affect the foraging success of the two parasitoid species in both laboratory and field experiments. Four common host-plant species were selected for this study. In paired-choice experiments to determine the innate foraging preferences for plants, both parasitoid species showed differences in innate search preferences among plant species. The plant preference of D. tasmanica was altered by oviposition experience with hosts that were feeding on other plant species. In a behavioral assay, the two parasitoid species allocated their times engaged in various types of behavior differently when foraging on different plant species. For both parasitoids, parasitism on Hardenbergia violacea was the highest of the four plant species. Significantly more larvae dropped from Myoporum insulare when attacked than from the other three host-plant species, which indicates that parasitism is also affected by interactions between plants and host insects. In vineyards, parasitism by D. tasmanica was significantly lower on M. insulare than on the other three host-plant species, but the parasitism rates were similar among the other three plant species. Our results indicate that plants play a role in the habitat preferences of these two parasitoid species by influencing their foraging behavior, and are likely to contribute to their distributions

  7. Enhancing and restoring habitat for the desert tortoise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abella, Scott R.; Berry, Kristin H.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat has changed unfavorably during the past 150 y for the desert tortoise Gopherus agassizii, a federally threatened species with declining populations in the Mojave Desert and western Sonoran Desert. To support recovery efforts, we synthesized published information on relationships of desert tortoises with three habitat features (cover sites, forage, and soil) and candidate management practices for improving these features for tortoises. In addition to their role in soil health and facilitating recruitment of annual forage plants, shrubs are used by desert tortoises for cover and as sites for burrows. Outplanting greenhouse-grown seedlings, protected from herbivory, has successfully restored (>50% survival) a variety of shrubs on disturbed desert soils. Additionally, salvaging and reapplying topsoil using effective techniques is among the more ecologically beneficial ways to initiate plant recovery after severe disturbance. Through differences in biochemical composition and digestibility, some plant species provide better-quality forage than others. Desert tortoises selectively forage on particular annual and herbaceous perennial species (e.g., legumes), and forage selection shifts during the year as different plants grow or mature. Nonnative grasses provide low-quality forage and contribute fuel to spreading wildfires, which damage or kill shrubs that tortoises use for cover. Maintaining a diverse “menu” of native annual forbs and decreasing nonnative grasses are priorities for restoring most desert tortoise habitats. Reducing herbivory by nonnative animals, carefully timing herbicide applications, and strategically augmenting annual forage plants via seeding show promise for improving tortoise forage quality. Roads, another disturbance, negatively affect habitat in numerous ways (e.g., compacting soil, altering hydrology). Techniques such as recontouring road berms to reestablish drainage patterns, vertical mulching (“planting” dead plant material

  8. Transport infrastructure shapes foraging habitat in a raptor community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Planillo, Aimara; Kramer-Schadt, Stephanie; Malo, Juan E

    2015-01-01

    Transport infrastructure elements are widespread and increasing in size and length in many countries, with the subsequent alteration of landscapes and wildlife communities. Nonetheless, their effects on habitat selection by raptors are still poorly understood. In this paper, we analyzed raptors' foraging habitat selection in response to conventional roads and high capacity motorways at the landscape scale, and compared their effects with those of other variables, such as habitat structure, food availability, and presence of potential interspecific competitors. We also analyzed whether the raptors' response towards infrastructure depends on the spatial scale of observation, comparing the attraction or avoidance behavior of the species at the landscape scale with the response of individuals observed in the proximity of the infrastructure. Based on ecological hypotheses for foraging habitat selection, we built generalized linear mixed models, selected the best models according to Akaike Information Criterion and assessed variable importance by Akaike weights. At the community level, the traffic volume was the most relevant variable in the landscape for foraging habitat selection. Abundance, richness, and diversity values reached their maximum at medium traffic volumes and decreased at highest traffic volumes. Individual species showed different degrees of tolerance toward traffic, from higher abundance in areas with high traffic values to avoidance of it. Medium-sized opportunistic raptors increased their abundance near the traffic infrastructures, large scavenger raptors avoided areas with higher traffic values, and other species showed no direct response to traffic but to the presence of prey. Finally, our cross-scale analysis revealed that the effect of transport infrastructures on the behavior of some species might be detectable only at a broad scale. Also, food availability may attract raptor species to risky areas such as motorways.

  9. Differences in forage-acquisition and fungal enzyme activity contribute to niche segregation in Panamanian leaf-cutting ants.

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    Pepijn W Kooij

    Full Text Available The genera Atta and Acromyrmex are often grouped as leaf-cutting ants for pest management assessments and ecological surveys, although their mature colony sizes and foraging niches may differ substantially. Few studies have addressed such interspecific differences at the same site, which prompted us to conduct a comparative study across six sympatric leaf-cutting ant species in Central Panama. We show that foraging rates during the transition between dry and wet season differ about 60 fold between genera, but are relatively constant across species within genera. These differences appear to match overall differences in colony size, especially when Atta workers that return to their nests without leaves are assumed to carry liquid food. We confirm that Panamanian Atta specialize primarily on tree-leaves whereas Acromyrmex focus on collecting flowers and herbal leaves and that species within genera are similar in these overall foraging strategies. Species within genera tended to be spaced out over the three habitat categories that we distinguished (forest, forest edge, open grassland, but each of these habitats normally had only a single predominant Atta and Acromyrmex species. We measured activities of twelve fungus garden decomposition enzymes, belonging to the amylases, cellulases, hemicellulases, pectinases and proteinases, and show that average enzyme activity per unit of fungal mass in Atta gardens is lower than in Acromyrmex gardens. Expression profiles of fungal enzymes in Atta also appeared to be more specialized than in Acromyrmex, possibly reflecting variation in forage material. Our results suggest that species- and genus-level identities of leaf-cutting ants and habitat-specific foraging profiles may give predictable differences in the expression of fungal genes coding for decomposition enzymes.

  10. Desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii are selective herbivores that track the flowering phenology of their preferred food plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W Bryan Jennings

    Full Text Available Previous studies of desert tortoise foraging ecology in the western Mojave Desert suggest that these animals are selective herbivores, which alter their diet according to the temporal availability of preferred food plants. These studies, however, did not estimate availability of potential food plants by taking into account the spatial and temporal variability in ephemeral plant abundance that occurs within the spring season. In this study, we observed 18 free-ranging adult tortoises take 35,388 bites during the spring foraging season. We also estimated the relative abundance of potential food plants by stratifying our sampling across different phenological periods of the 3-month long spring season and by different habitats and microhabitats. This methodology allowed us to conduct statistical tests comparing tortoise diet against plant abundance. Our results show that tortoises choose food plants non-randomly throughout the foraging season, a finding that corroborates the hypothesis that desert tortoises rely on key plants during different phenological periods of spring. Moreover, tortoises only consumed plants in a succulent state until the last few weeks of spring, at which time most annuals and herbaceous perennials had dried and most tortoises had ceased foraging. Many species of food plants--including several frequently eaten species--were not detected in our plant surveys, yet tortoises located these rare plants in their home ranges. Over 50% of bites consumed were in the group of undetected species. Interestingly, tortoises focused heavily on several leguminous species, which could be nutritious foods owing to their presumably high nitrogen contents. We suggest that herbaceous perennials, which were rare on our study area but represented ~30% of tortoise diet, may be important in sustaining tortoise populations during droughts when native annuals are absent. These findings highlight the vulnerability of desert tortoises to climate change

  11. Nonlinear Dynamic in an Ecological System with Impulsive Effect and Optimal Foraging

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    Min Zhao

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The population dynamics of a three-species ecological system with impulsive effect are investigated. Using the theories of impulsive equations and small-amplitude perturbation scales, the conditions for the system to be permanent when the number of predators released is less than some critical value can be obtained. Furthermore, because the predator in the system follows the predictions of optimal foraging theory, it follows that optimal foraging promotes species coexistence. In particular, the less beneficial prey can support the predator alone when the more beneficial prey goes extinct. Moreover, the influences of the impulsive effect and optimal foraging on inherent oscillations are studied using simulation, which reveals rich dynamic behaviors such as period-halving bifurcations, a chaotic band, a periodic window, and chaotic crises. In addition, the largest Lyapunov exponent and the power spectra of the strange attractor, which can help analyze the chaotic dynamic behavior of the model, are investigated. This information will be useful for studying the dynamic complexity of ecosystems.

  12. Ants can learn to forage on one-way trails.

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    Pedro Leite Ribeiro

    Full Text Available The trails formed by many ant species between nest and food source are two-way roads on which outgoing and returning workers meet and touch each other all along. The way to get back home, after grasping a food load, is to take the same route on which they have arrived from the nest. In many species such trails are chemically marked by pheromones providing orientation cues for the ants to find their way. Other species rely on their vision and use landmarks as cues. We have developed a method to stop foraging ants from shuttling on two-way trails. The only way to forage is to take two separate roads, as they cannot go back on their steps after arriving at the food or at the nest. The condition qualifies as a problem because all their orientation cues -- chemical, visual or any other -- are disrupted, as all of them cannot but lead the ants back to the route on which they arrived. We have found that workers of the leaf-cutting ant Atta sexdens rubropilosa can solve the problem. They could not only find the alternative way, but also used the unidirectional traffic system to forage effectively. We suggest that their ability is an evolutionary consequence of the need to deal with environmental irregularities that cannot be negotiated by means of excessively stereotyped behavior, and that it is but an example of a widespread phenomenon. We also suggest that our method can be adapted to other species, invertebrate and vertebrate, in the study of orientation, memory, perception, learning and communication.

  13. Intra-seasonal variation in foraging behavior among Adélie penguins (Pygocelis adeliae) breeding at Cape Hallett, Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyver, P.O.B.; MacLeod, C.J.; Ballard, G.; Karl, B.J.; Barton, K.J.; Adams, J.; Ainley, D.G.; Wilson, P.R.

    2011-01-01

    We investigated intra-seasonal variation in foraging behavior of chick-rearing Adélie penguins, Pygoscelis adeliae, during two consecutive summers at Cape Hallett, northwestern Ross Sea. Although foraging behavior of this species has been extensively studied throughout the broad continental shelf region of the Ross Sea, this is the first study to report foraging behaviors and habitat affiliations among birds occupying continental slope waters. Continental slope habitat supports the greatest abundances of this species throughout its range, but we lack information about how intra-specific competition for prey might affect foraging and at-sea distribution and how these attributes compare with previous Ross Sea studies. Foraging trips increased in both distance and duration as breeding advanced from guard to crèche stage, but foraging dive depth, dive rates, and vertical dive distances travelled per hour decreased. Consistent with previous studies within slope habitats elsewhere in Antarctic waters, Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) dominated chick meal composition, but fish increased four-fold from guard to crèche stages. Foraging-, focal-, and core areas all doubled during the crèche stage as individuals shifted distribution in a southeasterly direction away from the coast while simultaneously becoming more widely dispersed (i.e., less spatial overlap among individuals). Intra-specific competition for prey among Adélie penguins appears to influence foraging behavior of this species, even in food webs dominated by Antarctic krill.

  14. Element patterns in albatrosses and petrels: Influence of trophic position, foraging range, and prey type

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anderson, O.R.J.; Phillips, R.A.; Shore, R.F.; McGill, R.A.R.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the concentrations of 22 essential and non-essential elements among a community of Procellariiformes (and their prey) to identify the extent to which trophic position and foraging range governed element accumulation. Stable isotope analysis (SIA) was used to characterise trophic (δ 15 N) and spatial patterns (δ 13 C) among species. Few consistent patterns were observed in element distributions among species and diet appeared to be highly influential in some instances. Arsenic levels in seabird red blood cells correlated with δ 15 N and δ 13 C, demonstrating the importance of trophic position and foraging range for arsenic distribution. Arsenic concentrations in prey varied significantly across taxa, and in the strength of association with δ 15 N values (trophic level). In most instances, element patterns in Procellariiformes showed the clearest separation among species, indicating that a combination of prey selection and other complex species-specific characteristics (e.g. moult patterns) were generally more important determining factors than trophic level per se. - Trophic position, foraging range, and prey type were found to influence element compositions and concentrations in Procellariiformes from South Georgia.

  15. SOCIAL COMPLEXITY AND LEARNING FORAGING TASKS IN BEES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AMAYA-MÁRQUEZ MARISOL

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Social complexity and models concerning central place foraging were tested with respect to learning predictions using the social honey bee (Apis mellifera and solitary blue orchard bee (Osmia lignaria when given foraging problems. Both species were presented the same foraging problems, where 1 only reward molarity varied between flower morphs, and 2 only reward volume varied between flower morphs. Experiments utilized blue vs. white flower patches to standardize rewards in each experimental situation. Although honey bees learned faster than blue orchard bees when given a molarity difference reward problem, there was no significant difference in learning rate when presented a volume difference reward problem. Further, the rate at which blue orchard bees learned the volume difference problem was not significantly different from that with which honey bees learned about reward molarity differences. The results do not support the predictions of the social complexity theory, but do support those of the central place model

  16. Matrix population models from 20 studies of perennial plant populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Martha M.; Williams, Jennifer L.; Lesica, Peter; Bell, Timothy J.; Bierzychudek, Paulette; Bowles, Marlin; Crone, Elizabeth E.; Doak, Daniel F.; Ehrlen, Johan; Ellis-Adam, Albertine; McEachern, Kathryn; Ganesan, Rengaian; Latham, Penelope; Luijten, Sheila; Kaye, Thomas N.; Knight, Tiffany M.; Menges, Eric S.; Morris, William F.; den Nijs, Hans; Oostermeijer, Gerard; Quintana-Ascencio, Pedro F.; Shelly, J. Stephen; Stanley, Amanda; Thorpe, Andrea; Tamara, Ticktin; Valverde, Teresa; Weekley, Carl W.

    2012-01-01

    Demographic transition matrices are one of the most commonly applied population models for both basic and applied ecological research. The relatively simple framework of these models and simple, easily interpretable summary statistics they produce have prompted the wide use of these models across an exceptionally broad range of taxa. Here, we provide annual transition matrices and observed stage structures/population sizes for 20 perennial plant species which have been the focal species for long-term demographic monitoring. These data were assembled as part of the 'Testing Matrix Models' working group through the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS). In sum, these data represent 82 populations with >460 total population-years of data. It is our hope that making these data available will help promote and improve our ability to monitor and understand plant population dynamics.

  17. Reconsidering the generation time hypothesis based on nuclear ribosomal ITS sequence comparisons in annual and perennial angiosperms

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    Fiz-Palacios Omar

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Differences in plant annual/perennial habit are hypothesized to cause a generation time effect on divergence rates. Previous studies that compared rates of divergence for internal transcribed spacer (ITS1 and ITS2 sequences of nuclear ribosomal DNA (nrDNA in angiosperms have reached contradictory conclusions about whether differences in generation times (or other life history features are associated with divergence rate heterogeneity. We compared annual/perennial ITS divergence rates using published sequence data, employing sampling criteria to control for possible artifacts that might obscure any actual rate variation caused by annual/perennial differences. Results Relative rate tests employing ITS sequences from 16 phylogenetically-independent annual/perennial species pairs rejected rate homogeneity in only a few comparisons, with annuals more frequently exhibiting faster substitution rates. Treating branch length differences categorically (annual faster or perennial faster regardless of magnitude with a sign test often indicated an excess of annuals with faster substitution rates. Annuals showed an approximately 1.6-fold rate acceleration in nucleotide substitution models for ITS. Relative rates of three nuclear loci and two chloroplast regions for the annual Arabidopsis thaliana compared with two closely related Arabidopsis perennials indicated that divergence was faster for the annual. In contrast, A. thaliana ITS divergence rates were sometimes faster and sometimes slower than the perennial. In simulations, divergence rate differences of at least 3.5-fold were required to reject rate constancy in > 80 % of replicates using a nucleotide substitution model observed for the combination of ITS1 and ITS2. Simulations also showed that categorical treatment of branch length differences detected rate heterogeneity > 80% of the time with a 1.5-fold or greater rate difference. Conclusion Although rate homogeneity was not rejected

  18. Visual perception and social foraging in birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Juricic, Esteban; Erichsen, Jonathan T; Kacelnik, Alex

    2004-01-01

    Birds gather information about their environment mainly through vision by scanning their surroundings. Many prevalent models of social foraging assume that foraging and scanning are mutually exclusive. Although this assumption is valid for birds with narrow visual fields, these models have also been applied to species with wide fields. In fact, available models do not make precise predictions for birds with large visual fields, in which the head-up, head-down dichotomy is not accurate and, moreover, do not consider the effects of detection distance and limited attention. Studies of how different types of visual information are acquired as a function of body posture and of how information flows within flocks offer new insights into the costs and benefits of living in groups.

  19. Vertebrate Herbivore Browsing on Neighboring Forage Species Increases the Growth and Dominance of Siberian Alder Across a Latitudinal Transect in Northern Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeill, E. M.; Ruess, R. W.

    2017-12-01

    Vertebrate herbivores strongly influence plant growth and architecture, biogeochemical cycling, and successional dynamics in boreal and arctic ecosystems. One of the most notable impacts of vertebrate herbivory is on the growth and spread of alder, a chemically-defended, N-fixing shrub whose distribution in the Alaskan arctic has expanded dramatically over the past 60 years. Although herbivore effects on thin-leaf alder are well described for interior Alaskan floodplains, no work has been conducted on the effects of herbivores on Siberian alder (Alnus viridis spp fruticosa), despite the increasing importance of this species to high latitude ecosystems. We characterized browsing by snowshoe hares, moose, and willow ptarmigan on dominant shrub species across topo-edaphic sequences within 5 ecoregions along a 600 km latitudinal transect extending from interior Alaska to the North Slope. Ptarmigan browsed wind-blown lowland and alpine sites devoid of trees in all regions; moose browsed predominantly willow species in hardwood and mixed forests and were absent north of the Brooks Range; snowshoe hares selected habitats and forage based on their local density and vulnerability to predators. Browsing intensity on Siberian alder was either undetectable or low, limited primarily to hare browsing on young ramets in the northern boreal forest where hare density relative to forage availability is highest. Overall, alder height growth was positively correlated with levels of herbivory on competing shrub species. Our data support the hypothesis that vertebrate herbivore browsing is indirectly augmenting the growth, dominance, and possible spread of Siberian alder throughout its northern Alaskan range. Given the potential high rates of N-fixation inputs by Siberian alder, we believe herbivores are also having strong indirect effects on biogeochemical cycling and possibly C storage in these landscapes.

  20. Invited review: Sustainable forage and grain crop production for the US dairy industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, N P; Russelle, M P; Powell, J M; Sniffen, C J; Smith, S I; Tricarico, J M; Grant, R J

    2017-12-01

    A resilient US dairy industry will be underpinned by forage and crop production systems that are economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable. Land use for production of perennial and annual forages and grains for dairy cattle must evolve in response to multiple food security and environmental sustainability issues. These include increasing global populations; higher incomes and demand for dairy and other animal products; climate change with associated temperature and moisture changes; necessary reductions in carbon and water footprints; maintenance of soil quality and soil nutrient concerns; and competition for land. Likewise, maintaining producer profitability and utilizing practices accepted by consumers and society generally must also be considered. Predicted changes in climate and water availability will likely challenge current feed and dairy production systems and their national spatial distribution, particularly the western migration of dairy production in the late 20th century. To maintain and stabilize profitability while reducing carbon footprint, particularly reductions in methane emission and enhancements in soil carbon sequestration, dairy production will need to capitalize on genetic and management innovations that enhance forage and grain production and nutritive value. Improved regional and on-farm integration of feed production and manure utilization is needed to reduce environmental nitrogen and phosphorus losses and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. Resilient and flexible feed production strategies are needed to address each of these challenges and opportunities to ensure profitable feeding of dairy cattle and a sustainable dairy industry. The Authors. Published by the Federation of Animal Science Societies and Elsevier Inc. on behalf of the American Dairy Science Association®. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/).

  1. Heavy metal concentration in forage grasses and extractability from some acid mine spoils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taylor, R.W.; Ibeabuchi, I.O.; Sistani, K.R.; Shuford, J.W. (Alabama A and M University, Normal (United States). Department of Plant and Soil Science)

    1993-06-01

    Laboratory and greenhouse studies were conducted on several forage grasses, bermudagrass ([ital Cynodon dactylon]), creeping red fescue ([ital Festuca rubra]), Kentucky 31-tall fescue ([ital Festuca arundinacea]), oat ([ital Avena sativa]), orchardgrass ([ital Dactylis glomerata]), perennial ryegrass ([ital Lolium perenne]), sorghum ([ital Sorghum bicolor]), triticale (X. [ital triticosecale Wittmack]), and winter wheat ([ital Triticum aestivum]) grown on three Alabama acid mine spoils to study heavy metal accumulation, dry matter yield and spoil metal extractability by three chemical extractants (Mehlich 1, DTPA, and 0.1 M HCl). Heavy metals removed by these extractants were correlated with their accumulation by several forage grasses. Among the forages tested, creeping red fescue did not survive the stressful conditions of any of the spoils, while orchard grass and Kentucky 31-tall fescue did not grow in Mulberry spoil. Sorghum followed by bermudagrass generally produced the highest dry matter yield. However, the high yielding bermudagrass was most effective in accumulating high tissue levels of Mn and Zn from all spoils (compared to the other grasses) but did not remove Ni. On the average, higher levels of metals were extracted from spoils in the order of 0.1 M HCl[gt] Mehlich 1[gt] DTPA. However, DTPA extracted all the metals from spoils while Mehlich 1 did not extract Pb and 0.1 M HCl did not extract detectable levels of Ni. All of the extractants were quite effective in determining plant available Zn from the spoils. For the other metals, the effective determination of plant availability depended on the crop, the extractant, and the metal in concert. 20 refs., 6 tabs.

  2. Photosynthetic response of two seaweed species along an urban pollution gradient: evidence of selection of pollution-tolerant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherner, F; Bonomi Barufi, J; Horta, P A

    2012-11-01

    Urbanization leads to the expansion of ephemeral seaweed species and the decline of important perennial, canopy-forming seaweed species. Understanding the mechanisms that lead to these changes is a current challenge. In the present study, laboratory assays and field transplantations were performed with two seaweed species: the perennial, canopy-forming seaweed Sargassum stenophyllum and the ephemeral seaweed Ulva lactuca. Photosynthetic efficiency was assessed using modulated chlorophyll fluorometry. Brief exposure to urban waters does not appear to be a major stressor to the photosynthetic efficiency of either species. However, after 26 days of transplantation in urban waters, S. stenophyllum declined, whereas U. lactuca had enhanced photosynthetic efficiency. This difference reflects their divergent abilities to regulate the energy distribution at the PSII and shows that urban stressors alter these mechanisms. Our results provide evidence of the physiological causes for the decline of Sargassum species and the expansion of Ulva species in impacted urban areas. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Vision in avian emberizid foragers: maximizing both binocular vision and fronto-lateral visual acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Bret A; Pita, Diana; Tyrrell, Luke P; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban

    2015-05-01

    Avian species vary in their visual system configuration, but previous studies have often compared single visual traits between two to three distantly related species. However, birds use different visual dimensions that cannot be maximized simultaneously to meet different perceptual demands, potentially leading to trade-offs between visual traits. We studied the degree of inter-specific variation in multiple visual traits related to foraging and anti-predator behaviors in nine species of closely related emberizid sparrows, controlling for phylogenetic effects. Emberizid sparrows maximize binocular vision, even seeing their bill tips in some eye positions, which may enhance the detection of prey and facilitate food handling. Sparrows have a single retinal center of acute vision (i.e. fovea) projecting fronto-laterally (but not into the binocular field). The foveal projection close to the edge of the binocular field may shorten the time to gather and process both monocular and binocular visual information from the foraging substrate. Contrary to previous work, we found that species with larger visual fields had higher visual acuity, which may compensate for larger blind spots (i.e. pectens) above the center of acute vision, enhancing predator detection. Finally, species with a steeper change in ganglion cell density across the retina had higher eye movement amplitude, probably due to a more pronounced reduction in visual resolution away from the fovea, which would need to be moved around more frequently. The visual configuration of emberizid passive prey foragers is substantially different from that of previously studied avian groups (e.g. sit-and-wait and tactile foragers). © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  4. Estimated Perennial Streams of Idaho and Related Geospatial Datasets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rea, Alan; Skinner, Kenneth D.

    2009-01-01

    The perennial or intermittent status of a stream has bearing on many regulatory requirements. Because of changing technologies over time, cartographic representation of perennial/intermittent status of streams on U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) topographic maps is not always accurate and (or) consistent from one map sheet to another. Idaho Administrative Code defines an intermittent stream as one having a 7-day, 2-year low flow (7Q2) less than 0.1 cubic feet per second. To establish consistency with the Idaho Administrative Code, the USGS developed regional regression equations for Idaho streams for several low-flow statistics, including 7Q2. Using these regression equations, the 7Q2 streamflow may be estimated for naturally flowing streams anywhere in Idaho to help determine perennial/intermittent status of streams. Using these equations in conjunction with a Geographic Information System (GIS) technique known as weighted flow accumulation allows for an automated and continuous estimation of 7Q2 streamflow at all points along a stream, which in turn can be used to determine if a stream is intermittent or perennial according to the Idaho Administrative Code operational definition. The selected regression equations were applied to create continuous grids of 7Q2 estimates for the eight low-flow regression regions of Idaho. By applying the 0.1 ft3/s criterion, the perennial streams have been estimated in each low-flow region. Uncertainty in the estimates is shown by identifying a 'transitional' zone, corresponding to flow estimates of 0.1 ft3/s plus and minus one standard error. Considerable additional uncertainty exists in the model of perennial streams presented in this report. The regression models provide overall estimates based on general trends within each regression region. These models do not include local factors such as a large spring or a losing reach that may greatly affect flows at any given point. Site-specific flow data, assuming a sufficient period of

  5. Common garden comparisons of reproductive, forage and weed suppression potential of rangeland rehabilitation grasses of the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Common garden experiments are a means to remove environmental effects. Using 8 species of perennial rangeland grasses, we established a common garden (3 reps x28 plants = 84 plants/species). We found that ‘Hycrest’ crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum) and bluebunch wheatgrass (Pseudoroegneria sp...

  6. Establishment techniques in under-sown perennial ryegrass for seed production

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Deleuran, Lise C; Boelt, Birte

    2009-01-01

    Establishment methods have proven to be of major importance for grass-seed production. The objective of this research was to test the effect of different sowing techniques on plant establishment and the subsequent seed yield. Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is used as the model grass due...... to its large importance in Danish agriculture. In a three-year trial six different methods of under-sowing of perennial ryegrass in a spring barley cover crop were employed. Perennial ryegrass was either sown directly at different depths within the spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) rows or placed 2, 6......, or 12 cm from the spring barley rows. Results of dry-matter yield indicate that the best establishment of the grass occurred when placing the grass 6 or 12 cm from the cover-crop row, and this is of importance in less vigorous grasses. Overall, no seed-yield difference has been observed for perennial...

  7. Yield and nutritive quality of forage legumes on reclaimed surface mined land

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ditsch, D.C.; Collins, M.

    1998-01-01

    Legumes are important in the long-term nitrogen economy of surface mined lands and for establishing and maintaining quality livestock forage. Little information is available to reclamation specialists for use in selection of forage legume species based on productivity potential, persistence and nutritive quality for livestock. A study was initiated at two sites in the Appalachian coal fields of Kentucky to evaluate monocultures of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.), red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) and birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus L.) under management regimes suitable for livestock production. Legumes were harvested at the early bloom stage throughout the growing season for dry matter (DM) yield determination. Forage quality was determined by measuring crude protein (CP), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), acid detergent fiber (ADF), cellulose (CEL) and acid detergent lignin (ADL). High DM yields were produced by all species during the first production season (range 6.2-9.2 Mg ha -1 ) but yields of all species declined rapidly by year three. Birdsfoot trefoil demonstrated slightly greater drought tolerance during mid-season (July/August) than alfalfa and red clover. With the exception of site number-sign 1 in 1992 (4 harvests), no more than 3 harvests were made during a single growing season. Crude protein concentration of these forage legumes was found to be within the range commonly measured on undisturbed lands. However, high NDF and ADF values were observed above those reported by others for the same species. These results indicate that it may be difficult to maintain a high level of productivity throughout the five-year bonding period under hay management. Management practices such as summer stockpiling may be necessary to compensate for the rapid and wide fluctuations in DM yield and quality due to low water-holding capacity of mine spoils. 15 refs., 2 figs., 7 tabs

  8. Does foraging behaviour affect female mate preferences and pair formation in captive zebra finches?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neeltje J Boogert

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Successful foraging is essential for survival and reproductive success. In many bird species, foraging is a learned behaviour. To cope with environmental change and survive periods in which regular foods are scarce, the ability to solve novel foraging problems by learning new foraging techniques can be crucial. Although females have been shown to prefer more efficient foragers, the effect of males' foraging techniques on female mate choice has never been studied. We tested whether females would prefer males showing the same learned foraging technique as they had been exposed to as juveniles, or whether females would prefer males that showed a complementary foraging technique. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We first trained juvenile male and female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata to obtain a significant proportion of their food by one of two foraging techniques. We then tested whether females showed a preference for males with the same or the alternative technique. We found that neither a male's foraging technique nor his foraging performance affected the time females spent in his proximity in the mate-choice apparatus. We then released flocks of these finches into an aviary to investigate whether assortative pairing would be facilitated by birds taught the same technique exploiting the same habitat. Zebra finches trained as juveniles in a specific foraging technique maintained their foraging specialisation in the aviary as adults. However, pair formation and nest location were random with regard to foraging technique. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings show that zebra finches can be successfully trained to be foraging specialists. However, the robust negative results of the conditions tested here suggest that learned foraging specializations do not affect mate choice or pair formation in our experimental context.

  9. King eider foraging effort during the pre-breeding period in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppel, Steffen; Powell, Abby N.; Butler, Malcolm G.

    2011-01-01

    For reproduction, many arctic-nesting migratory birds rely on nutrients obtained on the breeding grounds, so they devote sufficient time to foraging immediately prior to nesting. However, little is known about the increase in foraging effort necessary to meet the energetic requirements of reproduction. In early June 2006 and 2008, we quantified the proportion of time spent foraging before breeding by a large sea duck, the King Eider (Somateria spectabilis), on its breeding grounds in northern Alaska. During >235 hours of behavioral observations, both male and female King Eiders spent >50% of the day loafing (resting, sleeping, comfort behavior, or being alert). Females foraged on average 30% of the time (mean 7.2 hr day-1,95% CI 6.0-8.4 hr day-1), three times as much as males (9%; 2.3 hr day-1, 95% CI 1.5–2.8 hr day-1). The most common prey in ponds where the eiders foraged were chironomid larvae and worms ranging in length from 1 to 30 mm. If the King Eider's daily energy expenditure on its breeding grounds is similar to values published for related species, it would need to ingest only 0.2–0.6 g dry mass of invertebrates per minute of foraging to meet its energetic requirements. Males did not lose body mass before breeding, and we assume that their foraging effort was sufficient for energy balance. Therefore, female King Eiders appear to triple their foraging effort over maintenance requirements to meet the energetic challenges of egg formation.

  10. Determination of Tropical Forage Preferences Using Two Offering Methods in Rabbits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. M. Safwat

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Two methods of feed preference trials were compared to evaluate the acceptability of 5 fresh foliages: Leucaena leucocephala, Moringa oleifera, Portulaca oleracea, Guazuma ulmifolia, and Brosimum alicastrum that was included as control. The evaluation included chemical analyses and forage intake by rabbits. The first method was a cafeteria trial; 12 California growing rabbits aged 8 wk, allocated in individual cages, were offered the five forage plants at the same time inside the cage, while in the second trial 60 California growing rabbits aged 8 wk, allocated individually, were randomly distributed into 5 experimental groups (n = 12/group; for each group just one forage species was offered at a time. The testing period for each method lasted for 7 d, preceded by one week of adaptation. The results showed that B. alicastrum and L. lecocephala were the most preferred forages while on the contrary G. ulmifolia was the least preferred one by rabbits. The results also revealed that the CV% value for the 2nd method (16.32%, which the tested forages were presented separately to rabbits, was lower and methodologically more acceptable than such value for the 1st method (34.28%, which all forages were presented together at the same time. It can be concluded that a range of tropical forages were consumed in acceptable quantities by rabbits, suggesting that diets based on such forages with a concentrate supplement could be used successfully for rabbit production. However, growth performance studies are still needed before recommendations could be made on appropriate ration formulations for commercial use.

  11. The foraging behaviour of herons and egrets on the Magela Creek flood plain, Northern Territory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recher, H.F.; Holmes, R.T.

    1982-03-01

    Five species of diurnal herons are common on the Magela Creek flood plain and forage along the edges of natural and artifical waterbodies both inside and outside the Ranger Uranium Project Area. The species of heron differ in the kinds and sizes of prey they take, their foraging location, degree of sociality and foraging behaviour. Because it takes relatively large fish, the Great Egret, E. alba, is most likely to be affected by any contamination of the aquatic environment by heavy metals or radionuclides. The Nankeen Night Heron, Nycticorax caledonicus is also abundant on the flood plain and probably feeds on large fish and frogs. The other herons take smaller or immature prey or hunt mostly in terrestrial habitats and are therefore less likely to be affected by contamination of the aquatic environment

  12. Forage selection by Royle's pika (Ochotona roylei) in the western Himalaya, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharyya, Sabuj; Adhikari, Bhupendra S; Rawat, Gopal S

    2013-10-01

    Forage selection decisions of herbivores are often complex and dynamic; they are modulated by multiple cues, such as quality, accessibility and abundance of forage plants. To advance the understanding of plant-herbivore interactions, we explored foraging behavior of the alpine lagomorph Royle's pika (Ochotona roylei) in Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary, India. Pika bite counts on food plants were recorded through focal sampling in three permanently marked plots. Food plant abundance was recorded by traditional quadrat procedures; forage selection was estimated with Jacob's selection index. Multiple food-choice experiments were conducted to determine whether forage selection criteria would change with variation in food plant composition. We also analyzed leaf morphology and nutrient content in both major food plants and abundantly available non-food plants. Linear regression models were used to test competing hypotheses in order to identify factors governing forage selection. Royle's pika fed primarily on 17 plant species and each forage selection decision was positively modulated by leaf area and negatively modulated by contents of avoided substances (neutral detergent fiber, acid detergent fiber, acid detergent lignin and tannin) in food plants. Furthermore, significance of the interaction term "leaf size × avoided substance" indicates that plants with large leaves were selected only when they had low avoided substance content. The forage selection criteria did not differ between field and laboratory experiments. The parameter estimates of best fit models indicate that the influence of leaf size or amount of avoided substance on pika forage selection was modulated by the magnitude of predation risk. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deborah M Gordon

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Deborah M

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Native herbaceous perennials as ornamentals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Bjarne; Ørgaard, Marian

    2013-01-01

    Gardening with native perennials is a way to bring nature closer to urban citizens and bring up reflections on nature in a busy world. During three seasons of trialing Salvia pratensis, Dianthus deltoides, Campanula trachelium, Vincetoxicum hirundinaria, Saxifraga granulata, Plantago media and P...

  16. Transgenesis and genomics in molecular breeding of pasture grasses and legumes for forage quality and other traits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spangenberg, G.

    2005-01-01

    Significant advances in the establishment of the methodologies required for the molecular breeding of temperate forage grasses (Lolium and Festuca species) and legumes (Trifolium and Medicago species) are reviewed. Examples of current products and approaches for the application of these methodologies to forage grass and legume improvement are outlined. The plethora of new technologies and tools now available for high-throughput gene discovery and genome-wide expression analysis have opened up opportunities for innovative applications in the identification, functional characterization and use of genes of value in forage production systems and beyond. Selected examples of current work in pasture plant genomics, xenogenomics, symbiogenomics and micro-array-based molecular phenotyping are discussed. (author)

  17. Bust economics: foragers choose high quality habitats in lean times

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonny S. Bleicher

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In environments where food resources are spatially variable and temporarily impoverished, consumers that encounter habitat patches with different food density should focus their foraging initially where food density is highest before they move to patches where food density is lower. Increasing missed opportunity costs should drive individuals progressively to patches with lower food density as resources in the initially high food density patches deplete. To test these expectations, we assessed the foraging decisions of two species of dasyurid marsupials (dunnarts: Sminthopsis hirtipes and S. youngsoni during a deep drought, or bust period, in the Simpson Desert of central Australia. Dunnarts were allowed access to three patches containing different food densities using an interview chamber experiment. Both species exhibited clear preference for the high density over the lower food density patches as measured in total harvested resources. Similarly, when measuring the proportion of resources harvested within the patches, we observed a marginal preference for patches with initially high densities. Models analyzing behavioral choices at the population level found no differences in behavior between the two species, but models analyzing choices at the individual level uncovered some variation. We conclude that dunnarts can distinguish between habitat patches with different densities of food and preferentially exploit the most valuable. As our observations were made during bust conditions, experiments should be repeated during boom times to assess the foraging economics of dunnarts when environmental resources are high.

  18. Body size limits dim-light foraging activity in stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streinzer, Martin; Huber, Werner; Spaethe, Johannes

    2016-10-01

    Stingless bees constitute a species-rich tribe of tropical and subtropical eusocial Apidae that act as important pollinators for flowering plants. Many foraging tasks rely on vision, e.g. spatial orientation and detection of food sources and nest entrances. Meliponini workers are usually small, which sets limits on eye morphology and thus quality of vision. Limitations are expected both on acuity, and thus on the ability to detect objects from a distance, as well as on sensitivity, and thus on the foraging time window at dusk and dawn. In this study, we determined light intensity thresholds for flight under dim light conditions in eight stingless bee species in relation to body size in a Neotropical lowland rainforest. Species varied in body size (0.8-1.7 mm thorax-width), and we found a strong negative correlation with light intensity thresholds (0.1-79 lx). Further, we measured eye size, ocelli diameter, ommatidia number, and facet diameter. All parameters significantly correlated with body size. A disproportionately low light intensity threshold in the minute Trigonisca pipioli, together with a large eye parameter P eye suggests specific adaptations to circumvent the optical constraints imposed by the small body size. We discuss the implications of body size in bees on foraging behavior.

  19. Forage based animal production systems and sustainability, an invited keynote

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdul Shakoor Chaudhry

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Forages are essential for the successful operation of animal production systems. This is more relevant to ruminants which are heavily dependant upon forages for their health and production in a cost-effective and sustainable manner. While forages are an economical source of nutrients for animal production, they also help conserve the soil integrity, water supply and air quality. Although the role of these forages for animal production could vary depending upon the regional preferences for the animal and forage species, climate and resources, their importance in the success of ruminant production is acknowledged. However with the increasing global human population and urbanisation, the sustainability of forage based animal production systems is sometimes questioned due to the interrelationship between animal production and the environment. It is therefore vital to examine the suitability of these systems for their place in the future to supply quality food which is safe for human consumption and available at a competitive price to the growing human population. Grassland and forage crops are recognised for their contribution to the environment, recreation and efficiency of meat and milk production,. To maintain sustainability, it is crucial that such farming systems remain profitable and environmentally friendly while producing nutritious foods of high economical value. Thus, it is pertinent to improve the nutritive value of grasses and other forage plants in order to enhance animal production to obtain quality food. It is also vital to develop new forages which are efficiently utilised and wasted less by involving efficient animals. A combination of forage legumes, fresh or conserved grasses, crop residues and other feeds could help develop an animal production system which is economically efficient, beneficial and viable. Also, it is crucial to use efficient animals, improved forage conservation methods, better manure handling, and minimum

  20. Boldness predicts an individual's position along an exploration-exploitation foraging trade-off.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patrick, Samantha C; Pinaud, David; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2017-09-01

    Individuals do not have complete information about the environment and therefore they face a trade-off between gathering information (exploration) and gathering resources (exploitation). Studies have shown individual differences in components of this trade-off but how stable these strategies are in a population and the intrinsic drivers of these differences is not well understood. Top marine predators are expected to experience a particularly strong trade-off as many species have large foraging ranges and their prey often have a patchy distribution. This environment leads these species to exhibit pronounced exploration and exploitation phases but differences between individuals are poorly resolved. Personality differences are known to be important in foraging behaviour but also in the trade-off between exploration and exploitation. Here we test whether personality predicts an individual exploration-exploitation strategy using wide ranging wandering albatrosses (Diomedea exulans) as a model system. Using GPS tracking data from 276 wandering albatrosses, we extract foraging parameters indicative of exploration (searching) and exploitation (foraging) and show that foraging effort, time in patch and size of patch are strongly correlated, demonstrating these are indicative of an exploration-exploitation (EE) strategy. Furthermore, we show these are consistent within individuals and appear stable in the population, with no reproductive advantage. The searching and foraging behaviour of bolder birds placed them towards the exploration end of the trade-off, whereas shy birds showed greater exploitation. This result provides a mechanism through which individual foraging strategies may emerge. Age and sex affected components of the trade-off, but not the trade-off itself, suggesting these factors may drive behavioural compensation to maintain resource acquisition and this was supported by the evidence that there were no fitness consequence of any EE trait nor the trade

  1. Record and foraging behavior of ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae in vertebrate carcasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiane Tagliatti Maciel

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Knowing the importance of participation by insects at cadaverous decomposition processes, and the limited use of the family Formicidae in criminal investigations, this study aims to record the foraging activity of four genera of ants in carcasses of birds and mammals. Observations occurred accidentally in two locations in the State of Minas Gerais, Brazil. In total, seven species of ants foraging in eight vertebrate carcasses were recorded. In addition, the study reported for the first time the presence of Wasmannia in carcasses in Brazil.

  2. IMPLEMENTATION OF DNA MARKERS TO IMPROVE BREEDING OF FORAGE LEGUMES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Grljušić

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available The low rates of estimated genetic gains in forage legumes breeding have emphasized the need for new breeding methods that would increase efficiency in forage selection and provide reliable improvement. Information on application of molecular methodologies and tools for the enhancement of the current empirical phenotype-based selection moved us toward implementation of DNA markers to our breeding activities. Firstly, attention was given to identification of genetic variability within the forage species involved in program and comparison of conventional and molecular marker efficiency in variability evaluation. RAPDs were used (i to estimate availability of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L. and Medicago falcata L. genetic variation and (ii to identify changes of red clover (Trifolium pratense L. variability after natural selection. SSRs were applied to evaluate diversity within and among field pea (Pisum sativum L. var. arvense and sativum groups/varieties. A total of 90 (alfalfa or 92 (red clover polymorphic bands was found by RAPDs. Total number of SSR alleles recorded was 118. The average Roger's distance per species/genus estimated was 0.29 (red clover, 0.33 (alfalfa and 0.51 (field pea. 2D PCo analysis of each species/genus separated materials into respective groups. A high degree of genetic variation within populations/varieties of each investigated species was found by AMOVA. The correspondence between pairs of matrices based on the morphological and molecular data was significant (p=0.95 only for red clover. RAPD and SSR data have given valuable information on genetic structure of materials and provided a description that determines heterogeneity. Further studies will be focused on identifying quantitative trait loci and marker assisted selection.

  3. Isolation of Pseudobutyrivibrio ruminis and Pseudobutyrivibrio xylanivorans from rumen of Creole goats fed native forage diet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grilli, D J; Cerón, M E; Paez, S; Egea, V; Schnittger, L; Cravero, S; Escudero, M Sosa; Allegretti, L; Arenas, G N

    2013-09-01

    We isolated and identified functional groups of bacteria in the rumen of Creole goats involved in ruminal fermentation of native forage shrubs. The functional bacterial groups were evaluated by comparing the total viable, total anaerobic, cellulolytic, hemicellulolytic, and amylolytic bacterial counts in the samples taken from fistulated goats fed native forage diet (Atriplex lampa and Prosopis flexuosa). Alfalfa hay and corn were used as control diet. The roll tubes method increased the possibility of isolating and 16S rDNA gene sequencing allowed definitive identification of bacterial species involved in the ruminal fermentation. The starch and fiber contents of the diets influenced the number of total anaerobic bacteria and fibrolytic and amylolytic functional groups. Pseudobutyrivibrio ruminis and Pseudobutyrivibrio xylanivorans were the main species isolated and identified. The identification of bacterial strains involved in the rumen fermentation helps to explain the ability of these animals to digest fiber plant cell wall contained in native forage species.

  4. The use of less common grass varieties as a factor of increasing forage lands productivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    В. Д. Бугайов

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To assess introduced samples of drought-resistant species of perennial grasses, select a promising parent material and create on its base high-yielding varie­ ies with economic characters. Methods. Field experiment, laboratory testing. Results. The results of studies on introduction and breeding were given aimed to improve drought tolerance of non-traditional perennial grasses under the conditions of the Right-Bank Forest-Steppe zone of Ukraine. Based on the selected parent material, varieties were created by the use of hybridization and ecotype breeding methods and then entered into the State Register of plant varieties suitable for dissemination in Ukraine, among them: intermediate wheatgrass (Elytrigia intermedia (Host Nevski – ‘Hors’, crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum (L. Gaertn. – ‘Petrivskyi’; meadow brome (Bromus riparia Rehm. – ‘Boian’; slender wheatgrass (Roegneria trachycaulon (Link Nevski – ‘Co­umb’. As compared with conventional, relatively drought-tolerant species of smooth brome (Bromopsis inermis (Leyss. Holub – ‘Mars’, increment of dry matter content of these species in the extreme drought conditions of 2011 was increased by 1,52–3,73 t/ha. Under more sufficient moistening conditions of 2012, slender wheatgrass ‘Columb’ was at the level of the сheck variety in terms of this indicator. Other varieties exceeded it by 1.44–3.22 t/ha. The data was given including seed productivity and sowing quality indicators, after-ripening duration and economic fitness of seeds. Conclusions. The use of the recommended varieties of drought-resistant species of perennial grasses as part of grass mixtures will increase significantly the productivity of grasslands and pastures in the current context of climate change.

  5. Primary versus secondary drivers of foraging activity in sandeel schools (Ammodytes tobianus)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Deurs, Mikael van; Behrens, Jane; Warnar, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    to fishery biologists and has consequences for a wide range of predators ranging from birds and mammals to commercially important species. However, experimental studies that shed light on the primary drivers of foraging activity in fish are rare. In the present study, whole schools of sandeel (A. tobianus......The commercially and ecologically valuable sandeel (Ammodytes ssp.) make distinct vertical shifts between an inactive stage, during which they seek refuge in the sand, and a pelagic schooling stage, during which they forage. This characteristic discontinuous foraging pattern constitutes a challenge......) were caught in August in east Denmark (65A degrees 02'30N; 12A degrees 37'00E) and kept in large tanks in the laboratory. It was found that the amount of food ingested and memory of past days feeding history are primary drivers of foraging activity at the level of the entire school, whereas external...

  6. Ovary activation does not correlate with pollen and nectar foraging specialization in the bumblebee Bombus impatiens

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    Meagan A. Simons

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Social insect foragers may specialize on certain resource types. Specialization on pollen or nectar among honeybee foragers is hypothesized to result from associations between reproductive physiology and sensory tuning that evolved in ancestral solitary bees (the Reproductive Ground-Plan Hypothesis; RGPH. However, the two non-honeybee species studied showed no association between specialization and ovary activation. Here we investigate the bumblebee B. impatiens because it has the most extensively studied pollen/nectar specialization of any bumblebee. We show that ovary size does not differ between pollen specialist, nectar specialist, and generalist foragers, contrary to the predictions of the RGPH. However, we also found mixed support for the second prediction of the RGPH, that sensory sensitivity, measured through proboscis extension response (PER, is greater among pollen foragers. We also found a correlation between foraging activity and ovary size, and foraging activity and relative nectar preference, but no correlation between ovary size and nectar preference. In one colony non-foragers had larger ovaries than foragers, supporting the reproductive conflict and work hypothesis, but in the other colony they did not.

  7. Ovary activation does not correlate with pollen and nectar foraging specialization in the bumblebee Bombus impatiens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simons, Meagan A; Smith, Adam R

    2018-01-01

    Social insect foragers may specialize on certain resource types. Specialization on pollen or nectar among honeybee foragers is hypothesized to result from associations between reproductive physiology and sensory tuning that evolved in ancestral solitary bees (the Reproductive Ground-Plan Hypothesis; RGPH). However, the two non-honeybee species studied showed no association between specialization and ovary activation. Here we investigate the bumblebee B. impatiens because it has the most extensively studied pollen/nectar specialization of any bumblebee. We show that ovary size does not differ between pollen specialist, nectar specialist, and generalist foragers, contrary to the predictions of the RGPH. However, we also found mixed support for the second prediction of the RGPH, that sensory sensitivity, measured through proboscis extension response (PER), is greater among pollen foragers. We also found a correlation between foraging activity and ovary size, and foraging activity and relative nectar preference, but no correlation between ovary size and nectar preference. In one colony non-foragers had larger ovaries than foragers, supporting the reproductive conflict and work hypothesis, but in the other colony they did not.

  8. Positive Interactions among Foraging Seabirds, Marine Mammals and Fishes and Implications for Their Conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard R. Veit

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available There is increasing recognition of the importance of “positive interactions” among species in structuring communities. For seabirds, an important kind of positive interaction is the use of birds of the same species, birds of other species, and other marine predators such as cetaceans, seals and fishes as cues to the presence of prey. The process by which a single bird uses, say, a feeding flock of birds as a cue to the presence of prey is called “local enhancement” or “facilitation.” There are subtly different uses of each of these terms, but the issue we address here is the ubiquity of positive interactions between seabirds and other marine predators when foraging at sea, and whether as a result of their associations the feeding success, and therefore presumably the fitness, of individual seabirds is increased. If this contention is true, then it implies that conservation of any one species of seabird must take into consideration the status and possible conservation of those species that the focal species uses as a cue while foraging. For example, conservation of great shearwaters (Ardenna gravis, which often feed over tuna (e.g., Thunnus schools, should take in to consideration conservation of tuna. Ecosystem management depends on understanding the importance of such processes; the loss of biodiversity, and the consequent threat to foraging success, may be a substantial threat to the stability of marine ecosystems.

  9. EFFECTS OF FARMING SYSTEMS ON SPECIES COMPOSITION, NUTRIENT CONTENT AND DIGESTIBILTY OF FORAGES OF THE NATURAL PASTURE OF ASSOSA ZONE (WESTERN ETHIOPIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beyene Teklu

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Forage species of the natural pasture of Assosa Zone of Benshangule-Gumuz (Western Ethiopia were identified and their chemical composition and in vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD determined. Data were collected from two farming systems (shifting cultivation: SC and permanent farming system: PFS and two grazing types (communal grazing land: CGL, riverside grazing land: RSGL. 18 grasses, 2 legumes, sedge, 2 forbs and 17 trees/shrubs were identified from the natural pasture of both farming systems. Hyparrhenia rufa had significantly lower (P

  10. Pollen Foraging Differences Among Three Managed Pollinators in the Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) Agroecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobiwash, Kyle; Uriel, Yonathan; Elle, Elizabeth

    2018-02-09

    Highbush blueberry, Vaccinium corymbosum (Gray), production in British Columbia is dependent upon insect pollination for fruit yield with particular cultivars demonstrating low yields due to poor pollination. New managed species of pollinators are being developed to provide farmers with managed pollinator options beyond Apis mellifera (Linnaeus). Pollinators in highbush blueberry agricultural systems encounter a variety of nontarget floral resources that may affect the pollination received by the crop. Our study analyzed the differences in pollen foraging of honey bees and two species of managed bumblebees across nine farm sites. Corbicular pollen loads from pollen foraging workers were removed and identified to the lowest taxonomic level possible. Of the three managed pollinators, the corbicular pollen loads of Bombus huntii (Greene) contained the most blueberry pollen (52.1%), three times as much as the two other managed bee species. Fifteen morphotypes of pollen were identified from all foraging workers with Rosaceae being the most frequently gathered overall pollen type (n = 74). The noncrop pollen identified in our samples derived from plant species not common as weedy species in the agroecosystem suggesting that floral resource diversity outside of the farm boundaries is important to pollinators. The three managed species in our blueberry fields utilized floral resources differentially underscoring the importance of pollinator species' characteristics and large-scale floral resource landscape in developing new managed pollinators and pollination strategies. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Does greed help a forager survive?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhat, U.; Redner, S.; Bénichou, O.

    2017-06-01

    We investigate the role of greed on the lifetime of a random-walking forager on an initially resource-rich lattice. Whenever the forager lands on a food-containing site, all the food there is eaten and the forager can hop S more steps without food before starving. Upon reaching an empty site, the forager comes one time unit closer to starvation. The forager is also greedy—given a choice to move to an empty or to a food-containing site in its local neighborhood, the forager moves preferentially toward food. Surprisingly, the forager lifetime varies nonmonotonically with greed, with different senses of the nonmonotonicity in one and two dimensions. Also unexpectedly, the forager lifetime in one dimension has a huge peak for very negative greed where the forager is food averse.

  12. Systematics, diversity and forage value of indigenous legumes of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A map representing the collection intensity for the study area showed that the majority of legumes species were collected in the Fynbos, Savanna and Grassland Biome. It is concluded that indigenous South African legumes are extremely diverse and this denotes the importance of further investigating their forage potential ...

  13. Acclimation of bloom-forming and perennial seaweeds to elevated pCO2 conserved across levels of environmental complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Dong; Schaum, Charlotte-Elisa; Lin, Fan; Sun, Ke; Munroe, James R; Zhang, Xiao W; Fan, Xiao; Teng, Lin H; Wang, Yi T; Zhuang, Zhi M; Ye, Naihao

    2017-11-01

    Macroalgae contribute approximately 15% of the primary productivity in coastal marine ecosystems, fix up to 27.4 Tg of carbon per year, and provide important structural components for life in coastal waters. Despite this ecological and commercial importance, direct measurements and comparisons of the short-term responses to elevated pCO 2 in seaweeds with different life-history strategies are scarce. Here, we cultured several seaweed species (bloom forming/nonbloom forming/perennial/annual) in the laboratory, in tanks in an indoor mesocosm facility, and in coastal mesocosms under pCO 2 levels ranging from 400 to 2,000 μatm. We find that, across all scales of the experimental setup, ephemeral species of the genus Ulva increase their photosynthesis and growth rates in response to elevated pCO 2 the most, whereas longer-lived perennial species show a smaller increase or a decrease. These differences in short-term growth and photosynthesis rates are likely to give bloom-forming green seaweeds a competitive advantage in mixed communities, and our results thus suggest that coastal seaweed assemblages in eutrophic waters may undergo an initial shift toward communities dominated by bloom-forming, short-lived seaweeds. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Bidirectional recovery patterns of Mojave Desert vegetation in an aqueduct pipeline corridor after 36 years: I. Perennial shrubs and grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berry, Kristin H.; Weigand, James F.; Gowan, Timothy A.; Mack, Jeremy S.

    2015-01-01

    We studied recovery of 21 perennial plant species along a severely disturbed aqueduct corridor in a Larrea tridentata-Ambrosia dumosa plant alliance in the Mojave Desert 36 years after construction. The 97-m wide corridor contained a central dirt road and buried aqueduct pipeline. We established transects at 0 m (road verge), 20 m and 40 m into the disturbance corridor, and at 100 m in undisturbed habitat (the control). Although total numbers of shrubs per transect did not vary significantly with distance from the verge, canopy cover of shrubs, species richness, and species diversity were higher in the control than at the verge and other distances. Canopy cover of common shrubs (Ericameria nauseosa, Ambrosia salsola, A. dumosa, L. tridentata, Grayia spinosa) and perennial grasses (Elymus elymoides, Poa secunda) also varied significantly by location. Discriminant analysis clearly separated the four distances based on plant composition. Patterns of recovery were bidirectional: secondary succession from the control into the disturbance corridor and inhibition from the verge in the direction of the control. Time estimated for species composition to resemble the control is dependent on location within the disturbance corridor and could be centuries at the road verge. Our findings have applications to other deserts.

  15. Desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) are selective herbivores that track the flowering phenology of their preferred food plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, Bryan W.; Berry, Kristin H.

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies of desert tortoise foraging ecology in the western Mojave Desert suggest that these animals are selective herbivores, which alter their diet according to the temporal availability of preferred food plants. These studies, however, did not estimate availability of potential food plants by taking into account the spatial and temporal variability in ephemeral plant abundance that occurs within the spring season. In this study, we observed 18 free-ranging adult tortoises take 35,388 bites during the spring foraging season. We also estimated the relative abundance of potential food plants by stratifying our sampling across different phenological periods of the 3-month long spring season and by different habitats and microhabitats. This methodology allowed us to conduct statistical tests comparing tortoise diet against plant abundance. Our results show that tortoises choose food plants non-randomly throughout the foraging season, a finding that corroborates the hypothesis that desert tortoises rely on key plants during different phenological periods of spring. Moreover, tortoises only consumed plants in a succulent state until the last few weeks of spring, at which time most annuals and herbaceous perennials had dried and most tortoises had ceased foraging. Many species of food plants—including several frequently eaten species—were not detected in our plant surveys, yet tortoises located these rare plants in their home ranges. Over 50% of bites consumed were in the group of undetected species. Interestingly, tortoises focused heavily on several leguminous species, which could be nutritious foods owing to their presumably high nitrogen contents. We suggest that herbaceous perennials, which were rare on our study area but represented ~30% of tortoise diet, may be important in sustaining tortoise populations during droughts when native annuals are absent. These findings highlight the vulnerability of desert tortoises to climate change if such changes

  16. Invasion Age and Invader Removal Alter Species Cover and Composition at the Suisun Tidal Marsh, California, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Estrella

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Wetland ecosystems are vulnerable to plant species invasions, which can greatly alter species composition and ecosystem functioning. The response of these communities to restoration can vary following invader removal, but few studies have evaluated how recent and long-term invasions can affect the plant community’s restoration potential. Perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium has invaded thousands of hectares of marshland in the San Francisco Estuary, California, United States of America, while the effects of invasion and removal of this weed remain poorly studied. In this study, perennial pepperweed was removed along a gradient of invasion age in brackish tidal marshes of Suisun Marsh, within the Estuary. In removal plots, resident plant cover significantly increased during the 2-year study period, particularly in the densest and oldest parts of the perennial pepperweed colonies, while species richness did not change significantly. In bare areas created by removal of perennial pepperweed, recolonization was dominated by three-square bulrush (Schoenoplectus americanus. Ultimately, removal of invasive perennial pepperweed led to reinvasion of the resident plant community within two years. This study illustrates that it is important to consider invasion age, along with exotic species removal, when developing a restoration strategy in wetland ecosystems.

  17. Urban foraging and the relational ecologies of belonging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melissa R. Poe; Joyce LeCompte; Rebecca McLain; Patrick T. Hurley

    2014-01-01

    Through a discussion of urban foraging in Seattle, Washington, USA, we examine how people’s plant and mushroom harvesting practices in cities are linked to relationships with species, spaces, and ecologies. Bringing a relational approach to political ecology, we discuss the ways that these particular nature–society relationships are formed, legitimated, and mobilized...

  18. Foraging Habitat and Chick Diets of Roseate Tern, Sterna dougallii, Breeding on Country Island, Nova Scotia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer C. Rock

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Breeding seabirds are threatened by human activities that affect nesting and foraging habitat. In Canada, one of the seabirds most at risk of extirpation is the Roseate Tern, Sterna dougallii. Although critical nesting habitat has been identified for the Roseate Tern in Canada, its foraging locations and the diet of its chicks are unknown. Therefore, our goal was to determine the foraging locations and diet of chicks of Roseate Tern breeding on Country Island, Nova Scotia, which is one of Canada's two main breeding colonies. In 2003 and 2004, we radio-tracked the Roseate Tern by plane to locate foraging areas and conducted feeding watches to determine the diet of chicks. Roseate Tern foraged approximately 7 km from the breeding colony over shallow water < 5 m deep. In both years, sand lance, Ammodytes spp., was the most common prey item delivered to chicks, followed by hake, Urophycis spp. Our results are consistent with previous work at colonies in the northeastern United States, suggesting that throughout its range, this species may be restricted in both habitat use and prey selection. The reliance on a specific habitat type and narrow range of prey species makes the Roseate Tern generally susceptible to habitat perturbations and reductions in the availability of prey.

  19. Agroecology of Novel Annual and Perennial Crops for Biomass Production

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manevski, Kiril; Jørgensen, Uffe; Lærke, Poul Erik

    The agroecological potential of many crops under sustainable intensification has not been investigated. This study investigates such potential for novel annual and perennial crops grown for biomass production.......The agroecological potential of many crops under sustainable intensification has not been investigated. This study investigates such potential for novel annual and perennial crops grown for biomass production....

  20. Deep diving odontocetes foraging strategies and their prey field as determined by acoustic techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giorli, Giacomo

    Deep diving odontocetes, like sperm whales, beaked whales, Risso's dolphins, and pilot whales are known to forage at deep depths in the ocean on squid and fish. These marine mammal species are top predators and for this reason are very important for the ecosystems they live in, since they can affect prey populations and control food web dynamics through top-down effects. The studies presented in this thesis investigate deep diving odontocetes. foraging strategies, and the density and size of their potential prey in the deep ocean using passive and active acoustic techniques. Ecological Acoustic Recorders (EAR) were used to monitor the foraging activity of deep diving odontocetes at three locations around the world: the Josephine Seamount High Sea Marine Protected Area (JHSMPA), the Ligurian Sea, and along the Kona coast of the island of Hawaii. In the JHSMPA, sperm whales. and beaked whales. foraging rates do not differ between night-time and day-time. However, in the Ligurian Sea, sperm whales switch to night-time foraging as the winter approaches, while beaked whales alternate between hunting mainly at night, and both at night and at day. Spatial differences were found in deep diving odontocetes. foraging activity in Hawaii where they forage most in areas with higher chlorophyll concentrations. Pilot whales (and false killer whales, clustered together in the category "blackfishes") and Risso's dolphins forage mainly at night at all locations. These two species adjust their foraging activity with the length of the night. The density and size of animals living in deep sea scattering layers was studied using a DIDSON imaging sonar at multiple stations along the Kona coast of Hawaii. The density of animals was affected by location, depth, month, and the time of day. The size of animals was influenced by station and month. The DIDSON proved to be a successful, non-invasive technique to study density and size of animals in the deep sea. Densities were found to be an

  1. Ultra-High Foraging Rates of Harbor Porpoises Make Them Vulnerable to Anthropogenic Disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wisniewska, Danuta Maria; Johnson, Mark; Teilmann, Jonas; Rojano-Doñate, Laia; Shearer, Jeanne; Sveegaard, Signe; Miller, Lee A; Siebert, Ursula; Madsen, Peter Teglberg

    2016-06-06

    The question of how individuals acquire and allocate resources to maximize fitness is central in evolutionary ecology. Basic information on prey selection, search effort, and capture rates are critical for understanding a predator's role in its ecosystem and for predicting its response to natural and anthropogenic disturbance. Yet, for most marine species, foraging interactions cannot be observed directly. The high costs of thermoregulation in water require that small marine mammals have elevated energy intakes compared to similar-sized terrestrial mammals [1]. The combination of high food requirements and their position at the apex of most marine food webs may make small marine mammals particularly vulnerable to changes within the ecosystem [2-4], but the lack of detailed information about their foraging behavior often precludes an informed conservation effort. Here, we use high-resolution movement and prey echo recording tags on five wild harbor porpoises to examine foraging interactions in one of the most metabolically challenged cetacean species. We report that porpoises forage nearly continuously day and night, attempting to capture up to 550 small (3-10 cm) fish prey per hour with a remarkable prey capture success rate of >90%. Porpoises therefore target fish that are smaller than those of commercial interest, but must forage almost continually to meet their metabolic demands with such small prey, leaving little margin for compensation. Thus, for these "aquatic shrews," even a moderate level of anthropogenic disturbance in the busy shallow waters they share with humans may have severe fitness consequences at individual and population levels. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Control of perennial weeds by mechanical methods and anaerobic soil disinfection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huiting, H.F.; Bleeker, P.O.; Riemens, M.M.

    2011-01-01

    Perennial weeds are difficult to control and ask for a specific approach. During the most recent years it has even become a great challenge to control these weeds in conventional farming systems, although in comparison effective perennial weed control in organic farming systems remains more

  3. The nuclear question: rethinking species importance in multi-species animal groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan, Umesh; Raza, Rashid Hasnain; Quader, Suhel

    2010-09-01

    1. Animals group for various benefits, and may form either simple single-species groups, or more complex multi-species associations. Multi-species groups are thought to provide anti-predator and foraging benefits to participant individuals. 2. Despite detailed studies on multi-species animal groups, the importance of species in group initiation and maintenance is still rated qualitatively as 'nuclear' (maintaining groups) or 'attendant' (species following nuclear species) based on species-specific traits. This overly simplifies and limits understanding of inherently complex associations, and is biologically unrealistic, because species roles in multi-species groups are: (i) likely to be context-specific and not simply a fixed species property, and (ii) much more variable than this dichotomy indicates. 3. We propose a new view of species importance (measured as number of inter-species associations), along a continuum from 'most nuclear' to 'least nuclear'. Using mixed-species bird flocks from a tropical rainforest in India as an example, we derive inter-species association measures from randomizations on bird species abundance data (which takes into account species 'availability') and data on 86 mixed-species flocks from two different flock types. Our results show that the number and average strength of inter-species associations covary positively, and we argue that species with many, strong associations are the most nuclear. 4. From our data, group size and foraging method are ecological and behavioural traits of species that best explain nuclearity in mixed-species bird flocks. Parallels have been observed in multi-species fish shoals, in which group size and foraging method, as well as diet, have been shown to correlate with nuclearity. Further, the context in which multi-species groups occur, in conjunction with species-specific traits, influences the role played by a species in a multi-species group, and this highlights the importance of extrinsic factors in

  4. The use of edge habitats by commuting and foraging bats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verboom, B.

    1998-01-01

    Travelling routes and foraging areas of many bat species are mainly along edge habitats, such as treelines, hedgerows, forest edges, and canal banks. This thesis deals with the effects of density, configuration, and structural features of edge habitats on the occurrence of bats. Four

  5. BETA DIVERSITY AND COMMUNITY DIFFERENTIATION IN DRY PERENNIAL SAND GRASSLANDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. KOVACS-LANG

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The spatial variability of species composition was studied in perennial sand grasslands in Hungary at multiple scales. Three sites were compared along an aridity gradient. Existing differences in climate along this ca. 200 km gradient correspond to regional climate changes predicted for the next 20-30 years. Six stands of Festucetum vaginatae grasslands were selected at each site within 400 x 1200 m areas for representing the coarse-scale within-site heterogeneity. Fine-scale compositional heterogeneity of vegetation within stands was sampled by recording the presence of species along 52 m long circular belt transects of 1040 units of 5 cm x 5 cm contiguous microquadrats. This sampling design enabled us to study the patterns of species combinations at a wide range of scales. The highest variability of plant species combinations appeared at very fine scales, between 10 cm and 25 cm. Differences in beta diversity along the gradient were scale-dependent. We found a decreasing trend of beta diversity with increasing aridity at fine scale, and on the contrary, an increasing trend at landscape scale. We conclude that the major trend of the vegetation differentiation due to aridity is the decrease of compositional variability at fine-scale accompanied by a coarse-scale diversification.

  6. Effects of dairy manure management in annual and perennial cropping systems on soil microbial communities associated with in situ N2O fluxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunfield, Kari; Thompson, Karen; Bent, Elizabeth; Abalos, Diego; Wagner-Riddle, Claudia

    2016-04-01

    Liquid dairy manure (LDM) application and ploughing events may affect soil microbial community functioning differently between perennial and annual cropping systems due to plant-specific characteristics stimulating changes in microbial community structure. Understanding how these microbial communities change in response to varied management, and how these changes relate to in situ N2O fluxes may allow the creation of predictive models for use in the development of best management practices (BMPs) to decrease nitrogen (N) losses through choice of crop, plough, and LDM practices. Our objectives were to contrast changes in the population sizes and community structures of genes associated with nitrifier (amoA, crenamoA) and denitrifier (nirK, nirS, nosZ) communities in differently managed annual and perennial fields demonstrating variation in N2O flux, and to determine if differences in these microbial communities were linked to the observed variation in N2O fluxes. Soil was sampled in 2012 and in 2014 in a 4-ha spring-applied LDM grass-legume (perennial) plot and two 4-ha corn (annual) treatments under fall or spring LDM application. Soil DNA was extracted and used to target N-cycling genes via qPCR (n=6) and for next-generation sequencing (Illumina Miseq) (n=3). Significantly higher field-scale N2O fluxes were observed in the annual plots compared to the perennial system; however N2O fluxes increased after plough down of the perennial plot. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMS) indicated differences in N-cycling communities between annual and perennial cropping systems, and some communities became similar between annual and perennial plots after ploughing. Shifts in these communities demonstrated relationships with agricultural management, which were associated with differences in N2O flux. Indicator species analysis was used to identify operational taxonomic units (OTUs) most responsible for community shifts related to management. Nitrifying and denitrifying soil

  7. Trophic ecology and foraging behavior of Tropidurus hispidus and Tropidurus semitaeniatus (Squamata, Tropiduridae in a caatinga area of northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo B. Ribeiro

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to analyze the seasonal variation in diet composition and foraging behavior of Tropidurus hispidus (Spix, 1825 and T. semitaeniatus (Spix, 1825, as well as measurement of the foraging intensity (number of moves, time spent stationary, distance traveled and number of attacks on prey items in a caatinga patch on the state of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. Hymenoptera/Formicidae and Isoptera predominated in the diet of both species during the dry season. Opportunistic predation on lepidopteran larvae, coleopteran larvae and adults, and orthopteran nymphs and adults occurred in the wet season; however, hymenopterans/Formicidae were the most important prey items. The number of food items was similar between lizard species in both seasons; however the overlap for number of prey was smaller in the wet season. Preys ingested by T. hispidus during the wet season were also larger than those consumed by T. semitaeniatus. Seasonal comparisons of foraging intensity between the two species differed, mainly in the wet season, when T. hispidus exhibited less movement and fewer attacks on prey, and more time spent stationary if compared to T. semitaeniatus. Although both lizards are sit-and-wait foragers, T. semitaeniatus is more active than T. hispidus. The diet and foraging behavior of T. hispidus and T. semitaeniatus overlap under limiting conditions during the dry season, and are segregative factors that may contribute to the coexistence of these species in the wet season.

  8. Quitting time: When do honey bee foragers decide to stop foraging on natural resources?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eRivera

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Honey bee foragers may use both personal and social information when making decisions about when to visit resources. In particular, foragers may stop foraging at resources when their own experience indicates declining resource quality, or when social information, namely the delay to being able to unload nectar to receiver bees, indicates that the colony has little need for the particular resource being collected. Here we test the relative importance of these two factors in a natural setting, where colonies are using many dynamically changing resources. We recorded detailed foraging histories of individually marked bees, and identified when they appeared to abandon any resources (such as flower patches that they had previously been collecting from consistently. As in previous studies, we recorded duration of trophallaxis events (unloading nectar to receiver bees as a proxy for resource quality and the delays before returning foragers started trophallaxis as a proxy for social need for the resource. If these proxy measures accurately reflect changes in resource quality and social need, they should predict whether bees continue foraging or not. However, neither factor predicted when individuals stopped foraging on a particular resource, nor did they explain changes in colony-level foraging activity. This may indicate that other, as yet unstudied processes also affect individual decisions to abandon particular resources.

  9. Dna c-values of 20 invasive alien species and 3 native species in south china

    OpenAIRE

    Gong Ni; Wang Yu-Tao; Björn Lars Olof; Li Shao-Shan

    2014-01-01

    Cultivated fields and forests in South China are experiencing serious damage due to invasive alien plants. We investigated the relation between DNA C-values and invasiveness. The DNA C-values of 23 species ranged from 0.39 pg to 3.37 pg. Herbs, perennials and native species had higher mean DNA C-values than shrubs, annuals and invasive alien species. DNA C-values decreased with increasing invasiveness. Paederia scandens, a harmful native species, has the lo...

  10. Chemical composition and ruminal nutrient degradability of fresh and ensiled amaranth forage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seguin, Philippe; Mustafa, Arif F; Donnelly, Danielle J; Gélinas, Bruce

    2013-12-01

    Amaranth is a crop with potential as a source of forage for ruminants that has not been well characterized. A study was conducted to determine the impact of ensiling on the nutritional quality and ruminal degradability of forage from two amaranth cultivars adapted to North America (i.e. Plainsman and D136). In particular, quantification and some microscopic characterization of oxalate found in amaranth were performed as it is an antiquality compound of concern. There were limited interactions between cultivars and ensiling for most variables. Differences in chemical composition between amaranth cultivars were also limited. Ensiling reduced non-structural carbohydrate and true protein contents. The proportion of acid detergent protein was high in fresh and ensiled forages of both cultivars (average of 177 g kg(-1) crude protein). Total oxalate content averaged 30 and 25 g kg(-1) in fresh and ensiled forages respectively. Ensiling reduced soluble oxalate content. Crystals observed in amaranth were calcium oxalate druses found mostly in idioblast cells in leaf mesophyll and parenchyma of primary and secondary veins. In situ ruminal degradability data indicated that both fresh and ensiled amaranth are highly degradable in the rumen. This study confirms that amaranth is a suitable forage for ruminant animals. Its chemical composition is comparable, for most variables, to that of other commonly used forage species. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.

  11. Specialist Osmia bees forage indiscriminately among hybridizing Balsamorhiza floral hosts

    Science.gov (United States)

    James H. Cane

    2011-01-01

    Pollinators, even floral generalists (=polyleges), typically specialize during individual foraging bouts, infrequently switching between floral hosts. Such transient floral constancy restricts pollen flow, and thereby gene flow, to conspecific flowers in mixed plant communities. Where incipient flowering species meet, however, weak cross-fertility and often similar...

  12. Nuisance ecology: do scavenging condors exact foraging costs on pumas in Patagonia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elbroch, L Mark; Wittmer, Heiko U

    2013-01-01

    Predation risk describes the energetic cost an animal suffers when making a trade off between maximizing energy intake and minimizing threats to its survival. We tested whether Andean condors (Vultur gryphus) influenced the foraging behaviors of a top predator in Patagonia, the puma (Puma concolor), in ways comparable to direct risks of predation for prey to address three questions: 1) Do condors exact a foraging cost on pumas?; 2) If so, do pumas exhibit behaviors indicative of these risks?; and 3) Do pumas display predictable behaviors associated with prey species foraging in risky environments? Using GPS location data, we located 433 kill sites of 9 pumas and quantified their kill rates. Based upon time pumas spent at a carcass, we quantified handling time. Pumas abandoned >10% of edible meat at 133 of 266 large carcasses after a single night, and did so most often in open grasslands where their carcasses were easily detected by condors. Our data suggested that condors exacted foraging costs on pumas by significantly decreasing puma handling times at carcasses, and that pumas increased their kill rates by 50% relative to those reported for North America to compensate for these losses. Finally, we determined that the relative risks of detection and associated harassment by condors, rather than prey densities, explained puma "giving up times" (GUTs) across structurally variable risk classes in the study area, and that, like many prey species, pumas disproportionately hunted in high-risk, high-resource reward areas.

  13. Fatty Acids, α-Tocopherol, β-Carotene and Lutein Contents in Forage Legumes, Forbs and a Grass-Clover Mixture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elgersma, A.; Søegaard, Karen; Jensen, Søren Krogh

    2013-01-01

    Fresh forages are an important natural source of vitamins and fatty acids in ruminant diets, and their concentrations in forage species are important for the quality of animal-derived foods such as dairy and meat products. The aims of this study were to obtain novel information on vitamins...

  14. Avian predator buffers against variability in marine habitats with flexible foraging behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoen, Sarah K.; Piatt, John F.; Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Heflin, Brielle; Madison, Erica N.; Drew, Gary S.; Renner, Martin; Rojek, Nora A.; Douglas, David C.; DeGange, Anthony R.

    2018-01-01

    How well seabirds compensate for variability in prey abundance and composition near their breeding colonies influences their distribution and reproductive success. We used tufted puffins (Fratercula cirrhata) as forage fish samplers to study marine food webs from the western Aleutian Islands (53°N, 173°E) to Kodiak Island (57°N, 153°W), Alaska, during August 2012–2014. Around each colony we obtained data on: environmental characteristics (sea surface temperature and salinity, seafloor depth and slope, tidal range, and chlorophyll-a), relative forage fish biomass (hydroacoustic backscatter), and seabird community composition and density at-sea. On colonies, we collected puffin chick-meals to characterize forage communities and determine meal energy density, and measured chicks to obtain a body condition index. There were distinct environmental gradients from west to east, and environmental variables differed by ecoregions: the (1) Western-Central Aleutians, (2) Eastern Aleutians, and, (3) Alaska Peninsula. Forage fish biomass, species richness, and community composition all differed markedly between ecoregions. Forage biomass was strongly correlated with environmental gradients, and environmental gradients and forage biomass accounted for ~ 50% of the variability in at-sea density of tufted puffins and all seabird taxa combined. Despite the local and regional variability in marine environments and forage, the mean biomass of prey delivered to puffin chicks did not differ significantly between ecoregions, nor did chick condition or puffin density at-sea. We conclude that puffins can adjust their foraging behavior to produce healthy chicks across a wide range of environmental conditions. This extraordinary flexibility enables their overall success and wide distribution across the North Pacific Ocean.

  15. Extreme precipitation variability, forage quality and large herbivore diet selection in arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cain, James W.; Gedir, Jay V.; Marshal, Jason P.; Krausman, Paul R.; Allen, Jamison D.; Duff, Glenn C.; Jansen, Brian; Morgart, John R.

    2017-01-01

    Nutritional ecology forms the interface between environmental variability and large herbivore behaviour, life history characteristics, and population dynamics. Forage conditions in arid and semi-arid regions are driven by unpredictable spatial and temporal patterns in rainfall. Diet selection by herbivores should be directed towards overcoming the most pressing nutritional limitation (i.e. energy, protein [nitrogen, N], moisture) within the constraints imposed by temporal and spatial variability in forage conditions. We investigated the influence of precipitation-induced shifts in forage nutritional quality and subsequent large herbivore responses across widely varying precipitation conditions in an arid environment. Specifically, we assessed seasonal changes in diet breadth and forage selection of adult female desert bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis mexicana in relation to potential nutritional limitations in forage N, moisture and energy content (as proxied by dry matter digestibility, DMD). Succulents were consistently high in moisture but low in N and grasses were low in N and moisture until the wet period. Nitrogen and moisture content of shrubs and forbs varied among seasons and climatic periods, whereas trees had consistently high N and moderate moisture levels. Shrubs, trees and succulents composed most of the seasonal sheep diets but had little variation in DMD. Across all seasons during drought and during summer with average precipitation, forages selected by sheep were higher in N and moisture than that of available forage. Differences in DMD between sheep diets and available forage were minor. Diet breadth was lowest during drought and increased with precipitation, reflecting a reliance on few key forage species during drought. Overall, forage selection was more strongly associated with N and moisture content than energy content. Our study demonstrates that unlike north-temperate ungulates which are generally reported to be energy-limited, N and moisture

  16. Current status of bird pest species in agroecosystems of Buenos Aires province, central Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Codesido, M.

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available We carried out the first assessment of abundance and distribution of bird pest species (eared dove Zenaida auriculata, monk parakeet Myiopsitta monachus, picazuro pigeon Patagioenas picazuro and spot-winged pigeon P. maculosa in the pampas of Buenos Aires province, Argentina, and analyzed their association with the presence of crops and/or introduced exotic woodlots in the rural landscape. We surveyed 35 transects located along secondary roads. Bird pest abundance was significantly higher at those sites with presence of woodlots (p<0.0001. Species-specific analyses revealed that abundance of both monk parakeet and picazuro pigeon was sensitive to the frequency of woodlots of tall and perennial tree species (Eucalyptus spp.; p<0.001, whereas eared dove abundance increased significantly with the frequency of woodlots composed by short and perennial tree species (Pinus spp., Casuarina spp.; p=0.002. Most bird pest species in the study area are more sensitive to the presence of woodlots rather than to the presence of croplands in the rural landscape. These results have practical implications, suggesting that an effective control of bird pest species in Buenos Aires province could be attained by managing exotic perennial tree species woodlots.

  17. Variations in plant forage quality in the range of the Porcupine caribou herd

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill Johnstone

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding potential impacts of vegetation change on caribou energetics requires information on variations in forage quality among different plant types and over time. We synthesized data on forage quality (nitrogen, neutral detergent fiber and dry matter digestibility for 10 plant growth forms from existing scientific literature and from field research in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska. These data describe forage quality of plant species in habitats found within the summer and winter range of the Porcupine caribou herd in northwestern Canada and northern Alaska, U.S.A. We compared mean levels of summer forage quality among growth forms and, where possible, estimated seasonal changes in forage quality. Preferred forage groups (deciduous shrubs, forbs, and cottongrass flowers had higher nitrogen and digestibility, and lower fiber content, than other growth forms. Nitrogen concentration in green biomass peaked at the onset of the growing season in forbs and deciduous shrubs, whereas graminoids reached peak nitrogen concentrations approximately 15-30 days after growth initiation. In vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD and concentration of neutral detergent fiber (NDF of green biomass differed among growth forms, but did not show strong seasonal changes. IVDMD and NDF concentrations were correlated with nitrogen concentrations in studies that had paired sampling.

  18. Biomass accumulation and chemical composition of Massai grass intercropped with forage legumes on an integrated crop-livestock-forest system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana da Costa Moreno Gama

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective was to evaluate the use of woody legumes (Albizia lebbeck, Cratylia argentea, Dipteryx Allata (Baru, a Leucaena hybrid (L. leucocephala + L. diversifolia, and Leucaena leucocephalacv. Cunningham and herbaceous legumes (Arachis pintoi intercropped with Panicum maximum cv. Massai, simultaneously implanted in a maize crop. The study made use of a randomized block experimental design with four replications. Assessments of biomass accumulation and forage nutritional value were made after the maize harvest, between June 2008 and October 2010. It was found that the residues of maize provided better growing conditions for Massai grass during the dry season. L. leucocephala cv. Cunningham and the Leucaena hybrid had the highest accumulation of all forage legumes evaluated, and provided the best nutritional value of all the arrangements tested. Of all woody legumes tested in this system, Leucaena was considered feasible for intercropping with Massai grass. The intercrop of perennial woody Baru with maize is not recommended. Albizia lebbeck and Cratylia argentea require further study, especially the yield assessment at different cutting intervals and cutting heights. Arachis pintoi had a low participation in the intercropping, showing greater performance over time, indicating slow thriving in this experimental condition.

  19. Consumer sensory evaluation and chemical composition of beef gluteus medius and triceps brachii steaks from cattle finished on forage or concentrate diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chail, A; Legako, J F; Pitcher, L R; Ward, R E; Martini, S; MacAdam, J W

    2017-04-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the impact of cattle finishing diet and muscle type on meat quality. Consumer sensory response, proximate composition, Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF), fatty acid composition, and volatile compounds were assessed from the gluteus medius (GM) and triceps brachii (TB) muscles of cattle ( = 6 per diet) which were grain-finished (USUGrain) on conventional feedlot or 2 forage diets, a perennial legume, birdsfoot trefoil-finished (USUBFT; ), and grass-finished (USUGrass; ). Diet had an interacting effect with muscle for all sensory attributes ( ≤ 0.002), except aroma and flavor ( ≥ 0.078). In forage-finished beef, tenderness, fattiness, overall liking, and WBSF tenderness of GM was greater ( 0.05) but the juiciness of TB was more liked than USUGrain GM ( 0.05) between GM and TB. Lower ( 0.05) to both USUGrass and USUGrain beef. However, IMF percent was not impacted by muscle type ( = 0.092). The ratio of -6:-3 fatty acids was affected by muscle dependent on diet ( = 0.016). The ratio of -6:-3 fatty acids was affected by the interaction of muscle × diet ( = 0.016). Between forage diets (USUGrass and USUBFT), -6:-3 ratios were similar ( > 0.05) between GM and TB, whereas within USUGrain, the GM was greater ( 0.05). Strecker aldehydes, ketones, pyrazines, and methional were affected ( ≤ 0.036) by muscle and found to have a greater concentration in GM compared with TB. Overall, consumers determined that USUGrain GM and TB had similar ( > 0.05) quality ratings. However, within forage-finished beef, the GM was perceived more frequently ( consumer group grilled GM and TB steaks, grain-finished beef provided more uniform quality and eating experience compared with forage-finished beef.

  20. Selection of forages by timor deer (cervus timorensis blainville) in menjangan island, bali

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ketut Ginantra, I.; Bagus Made Suaskara, Ida; Ketut Muksin, I.

    2018-03-01

    This study was conducted to determine the selection of forages plants by Timor deer (Cervus timorensis) on Menjangan Island and its relation to the availability, chemical and physical properties of feed plants. The study was conducted in July-September 2016 in savanna and monsoon forest habitats. The availability of habitat feed plants in the habitat was determined by the quadrat method, and the species of plant eaten by Timor deer was determined through the microhistological analysis of the fecal sample. The food selection index is determine by the Ivlev index. Energy contents of forages plants by bomb calorimeter apparatus, crude protein analyzed by Semi-Micro Kjeldahl technique, NDF, ADF and lignin levels refer to the method of Goering and Van Soest. Mineral content of calcium (Ca) and phosphorus (P) by using atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Determination of tannin content with Folin Denish reaction. Physical properties determine are water regain capacity and water solubility. The relationship between availability with the utilization of plants by Timor deer was analyzed with the similarity index. Multiple regression statistic to test the relationship between index selection with nutritional value factor and physical characteristic of plant species. The result showed that Timor deer selected 32 plants species of graminoids, forbs and woody plants. Feeding selection of Timor deer is strongly influenced by the availability of forage plants in habitat. The feeding selection was significantly influenced by three predictor variables i.e. positive nutritional value is crude protein and negative nutritional value were lignin and tannins. Selection of forage plant Timor deer is positively correlated with the physical properties of feed plants.

  1. Remote Sensing Forage Quality for Browsing Herbivores: A Case Study of Cutting Edge Koala Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngentob, K. N.; Au, J.; Held, A. A.; Foley, W. J.; Possingham, H. P.

    2014-12-01

    Managing landscapes for conservation requires a capacity to measure habitat quality. Although multiple factors are often responsible for the distribution and abundance of herbivores, spatial variations in the quality and quantity of plant forage are known to be important for many species. While we cannot see the chemical complexity of landscapes with our naked-eye, advances in imaging spectroscopy are making it possible to assess the quality of forage on a landscape-scale. Much research in this area has focused on the ability to estimate foliar nitrogen (N), because N is believed to be a limiting nutrient for many leaf eating animals. However, the total quantity of foliar N does not necessarily reflect the amount of N that can be utilized by herbivores. Available nitrogen (AvailN) is an invitro measure of forage quality that integrates the influence of tannins and fibre on the amount of foliar N that is available for digestion by herbivores. This may be a more meaningful measure of forage quality than total N for the many herbivorous species that are sensitive to the effects of tannins. Our previous research has demonstrated that it is possible to estimate this integrated measure of foliar nutritional quality at an individual tree crown level across multiple tree species using imaging spectroscopy (HyMap). Here we present a case study of how this remote sensing data is being used to help inform landscape management and conservation decisions for an iconic Australian species, the koala (Phascolarctos cinereus). We review the methods involved in developing maps of integrated measures of foliar nutritional quality for browsing herbivores with airborne imaging spectroscopy data and discuss their applications for wildlife management.

  2. Comparative Foraging Efficiency of Two Sympatric Jackals, Silver-Backed Jackals (Canis mesomelas) and Golden Jackals (Canis aureus), in the Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Temu, S. E.; Nahonyo, C. L.; Moehlman, P. D.

    2016-01-01

    The foraging efficiency of two sympatric species of jackals, silver-backed jackals (Canis mesomelas) and golden jackals (Canis aureus), was studied in the Ngorongoro crater from July 2014 through May 2015. The focal animal observation method was used and individuals of both species were followed as they foraged from morning to evening. Observations of individuals of both jackal species were made from a vehicle using binoculars and a spotting scope. Three major parameters were used for determi...

  3. Hybrid value foraging: How the value of targets shapes human foraging behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Jeremy M; Cain, Matthew S; Alaoui-Soce, Abla

    2018-04-01

    In hybrid foraging, observers search visual displays for multiple instances of multiple target types. In previous hybrid foraging experiments, although there were multiple types of target, all instances of all targets had the same value. Under such conditions, behavior was well described by the marginal value theorem (MVT). Foragers left the current "patch" for the next patch when the instantaneous rate of collection dropped below their average rate of collection. An observer's specific target selections were shaped by previous target selections. Observers were biased toward picking another instance of the same target. In the present work, observers forage for instances of four target types whose value and prevalence can vary. If value is kept constant and prevalence manipulated, participants consistently show a preference for the most common targets. Patch-leaving behavior follows MVT. When value is manipulated, observers favor more valuable targets, though individual foraging strategies become more diverse, with some observers favoring the most valuable target types very strongly, sometimes moving to the next patch without collecting any of the less valuable targets.

  4. Delayed chlorophyll a fluorescence, MR 820, and gas exchange changes in perennial ryegrass under salt stress

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dąbrowski, P., E-mail: piotr_dabrowski@sggw.pl [Department of Environmental Improvement, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, 159 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw (Poland); Kalaji, M.H., E-mail: hazem@kalaji.pl [Department of Plant Physiology, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, 159 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw (Poland); SI TECHNOLOGY Sp. z o. o., Górczewska 226C/26, 01-460 Warsaw (Poland); Baczewska, A.H., E-mail: a.baczewska@obpan.pl [Polish Academy of Sciences Botanical Garden-Center for Biological Diversity Conservation in Powsin, 2 Prawdziwka St., 02-973 Warsaw (Poland); Pawluśkiewicz, B. [Department of Environmental Improvement, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, 159 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw (Poland); Mastalerczuk, G., E-mail: grazyna_mastalerczuk@sggw.pl [Department of Agronomy, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, 159 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw (Poland); Borawska-Jarmułowicz, B., E-mail: barbara_borawska_jarmulowicz@sggw.pl [Department of Agronomy, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, 159 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw (Poland); Paunov, M. [Department Biophysics and Radiobiology, St. Kl. Ohridski Sofia University, 8 Dragan Tsankov Blvd., 1164 Sofia (Bulgaria); Goltsev, V., E-mail: goltsev@biofac.uni-sofia.bg [Department Biophysics and Radiobiology, St. Kl. Ohridski Sofia University, 8 Dragan Tsankov Blvd., 1164 Sofia (Bulgaria)

    2017-03-15

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is one of the more popular grass species in Europe. It is commonly used for starting lawns in urban areas, where plant growth is limited by many environmental conditions. The contamination of soils by salt is one of the major problems in urban green areas, as well as in natural areas. The basic aim of this study is to provide a detailed in vivo analysis of the changes in the delayed chlorophyll fluorescence and MR 820 signals (induced by salt stress) of two lawn varieties of perennial ryegrass, and to find out if there are correlations between these parameters and gas exchange. Two lawn varieties of Lolium perenne L. were used: Nira and Roadrunner. Salinization was performed at 8 weeks after sowing by adding NaCl in water solution (0, 0.15, and 0.30 M). There were 8 terms of measurement: 0 h, 24 h, 48 h, 96 h, 144 h, 192 h, 240 h, and 288 h after salinization. Our results showed that delayed fluorescence is a tool that can bring completely new opportunities for detecting stress in plants caused by salt. Our work allowed us to identify various limitation patterns in the photosynthetic efficiency of perennial ryegrass lawn varieties grown under salt stress conditions. Significant differences between the two tested varieties in response to salt stress were confirmed.

  5. Delayed chlorophyll a fluorescence, MR 820, and gas exchange changes in perennial ryegrass under salt stress

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dąbrowski, P.; Kalaji, M.H.; Baczewska, A.H.; Pawluśkiewicz, B.; Mastalerczuk, G.; Borawska-Jarmułowicz, B.; Paunov, M.; Goltsev, V.

    2017-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is one of the more popular grass species in Europe. It is commonly used for starting lawns in urban areas, where plant growth is limited by many environmental conditions. The contamination of soils by salt is one of the major problems in urban green areas, as well as in natural areas. The basic aim of this study is to provide a detailed in vivo analysis of the changes in the delayed chlorophyll fluorescence and MR 820 signals (induced by salt stress) of two lawn varieties of perennial ryegrass, and to find out if there are correlations between these parameters and gas exchange. Two lawn varieties of Lolium perenne L. were used: Nira and Roadrunner. Salinization was performed at 8 weeks after sowing by adding NaCl in water solution (0, 0.15, and 0.30 M). There were 8 terms of measurement: 0 h, 24 h, 48 h, 96 h, 144 h, 192 h, 240 h, and 288 h after salinization. Our results showed that delayed fluorescence is a tool that can bring completely new opportunities for detecting stress in plants caused by salt. Our work allowed us to identify various limitation patterns in the photosynthetic efficiency of perennial ryegrass lawn varieties grown under salt stress conditions. Significant differences between the two tested varieties in response to salt stress were confirmed.

  6. Supporting Agricultural Ecosystem Services through the Integration of Perennial Polycultures into Crop Rotations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Weißhuhn

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This review analyzes the potential role and long-term effects of field perennial polycultures (mixtures in agricultural systems, with the aim of reducing the trade-offs between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. First, crop rotations are identified as a suitable tool for the assessment of the long-term effects of perennial polycultures on ecosystem services, which are not visible at the single-crop level. Second, the ability of perennial polycultures to support ecosystem services when used in crop rotations is quantified through eight agricultural ecosystem services. Legume–grass mixtures and wildflower mixtures are used as examples of perennial polycultures, and compared with silage maize as a typical crop for biomass production. Perennial polycultures enhance soil fertility, soil protection, climate regulation, pollination, pest and weed control, and landscape aesthetics compared with maize. They also score lower for biomass production compared with maize, which confirms the trade-off between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. However, the additional positive factors provided by perennial polycultures, such as reduced costs for mineral fertilizer, pesticides, and soil tillage, and a significant preceding crop effect that increases the yields of subsequent crops, should be taken into account. However, a full assessment of agricultural ecosystem services requires a more holistic analysis that is beyond the capabilities of current frameworks.

  7. Starvation dynamics of a greedy forager

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhat, U.; Redner, S.; Bénichou, O.

    2017-07-01

    We investigate the dynamics of a greedy forager that moves by random walking in an environment where each site initially contains one unit of food. Upon encountering a food-containing site, the forager eats all the food there and can subsequently hop an additional S steps without food before starving to death. Upon encountering an empty site, the forager goes hungry and comes one time unit closer to starvation. We investigate the new feature of forager greed; if the forager has a choice between hopping to an empty site or to a food-containing site in its nearest neighborhood, it hops preferentially towards food. If the neighboring sites all contain food or are all empty, the forager hops equiprobably to one of these neighbors. Paradoxically, the lifetime of the forager can depend non-monotonically on greed, and the sense of the non-monotonicity is opposite in one and two dimensions. Even more unexpectedly, the forager lifetime in one dimension is substantially enhanced when the greed is negative; here the forager tends to avoid food in its local neighborhood. We also determine the average amount of food consumed at the instant when the forager starves. We present analytic, heuristic, and numerical results to elucidate these intriguing phenomena.

  8. Food availability and foraging near human developments by black bears

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkle, Jerod A.; Robinson, Hugh S.; Krausman, Paul R.; Alaback, Paul B.

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the relationship between foraging ecology and the presence of human-dominated landscapes is important, particularly for American black bears (Ursus americanus), which sometimes move between wildlands and urban areas to forage. The food-related factors influencing this movement have not been explored, but can be important for understanding the benefits and costs to black bear foraging behavior and the fundamental origins of bear conflicts. We tested whether the scarcity of wildland foods or the availability of urban foods can explain when black bears forage near houses, examined the extent to which male bears use urban areas in comparison to females, and identified the most important food items influencing bear movement into urban areas. We monitored 16 collared black bears in and around Missoula, Montana, during 2009 and 2010, while quantifying the rate of change in green vegetation and the availability of 5 native berry-producing species outside the urban area, the rate of change in green vegetation, and the availability of apples and garbage inside the urban area. We used parametric time-to-event models in which an event was a bear location collected within 100 m of a house. We also visited feeding sites located near houses and quantified food items bears had eaten. The probability of a bear being located near a house was 1.6 times higher for males, and increased during apple season and the urban green-up. Fruit trees accounted for most of the forage items at urban feeding sites (49%), whereas wildland foods composed fruit trees, appear to be more important than the availability of garbage in influencing when bears forage near houses.

  9. New Developments in Forage Varieties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forage crops harvested for hay or haylage or grazed support dairy, beef, sheep and horse production. Additional livestock production from reduced forage acreage supports the need for forage variety improvement. The Consortium for Alfalfa Improvement is a partnership model of government, private no...

  10. Comparison of laboratory and field remote sensing methods to measure forage quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Xulin; Wilmshurst, John F; Li, Zhaoqin

    2010-09-01

    Recent research in range ecology has emphasized the importance of forage quality as a key indicator of rangeland condition. However, we lack tools to evaluate forage quality at scales appropriate for management. Using canopy reflectance data to measure forage quality has been conducted at both laboratory and field levels separately, but little work has been conducted to evaluate these methods simultaneously. The objective of this study is to find a reliable way of assessing grassland quality through measuring forage chemistry with reflectance. We studied a mixed grass ecosystem in Grasslands National Park of Canada and surrounding pastures, located in southern Saskatchewan. Spectral reflectance was collected at both in-situ field level and in the laboratory. Vegetation samples were collected at each site, sorted into the green grass portion, and then sent to a chemical company for measuring forage quality variables, including protein, lignin, ash, moisture at 135 °C, Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF), Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF), Total Digestible, Digestible Energy, Net Energy for Lactation, Net Energy for Maintenance, and Net Energy for Gain. Reflectance data were processed with the first derivative transformation and continuum removal method. Correlation analysis was conducted on spectral and forage quality variables. A regression model was further built to investigate the possibility of using canopy spectral measurements to predict the grassland quality. Results indicated that field level prediction of protein of mixed grass species was possible (r² = 0.63). However, the relationship between canopy reflectance and the other forage quality variables was not strong.

  11. Comparison of Laboratory and Field Remote Sensing Methods to Measure Forage Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhaoqin Li

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Recent research in range ecology has emphasized the importance of forage quality as a key indicator of rangeland condition. However, we lack tools to evaluate forage quality at scales appropriate for management. Using canopy reflectance data to measure forage quality has been conducted at both laboratory and field levels separately, but little work has been conducted to evaluate these methods simultaneously. The objective of this study is to find a reliable way of assessing grassland quality through measuring forage chemistry with reflectance. We studied a mixed grass ecosystem in Grasslands National Park of Canada and surrounding pastures, located in southern Saskatchewan. Spectral reflectance was collected at both in-situ field level and in the laboratory. Vegetation samples were collected at each site, sorted into the green grass portion, and then sent to a chemical company for measuring forage quality variables, including protein, lignin, ash, moisture at 135 ºC, Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF, Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF, Total Digestible, Digestible Energy, Net Energy for Lactation, Net Energy for Maintenance, and Net Energy for Gain. Reflectance data were processed with the first derivative transformation and continuum removal method. Correlation analysis was conducted on spectral and forage quality variables. A regression model was further built to investigate the possibility of using canopy spectral measurements to predict the grassland quality. Results indicated that field level prediction of protein of mixed grass species was possible (r2 = 0.63. However, the relationship between canopy reflectance and the other forage quality variables was not strong.

  12. Composição florística de pastagem natural afetada por fontes de fósforo, calagem e introdução de espécies forrageiras de estação fria Botanical composition of natural pasture as afected by phosphorus sources, lime and introduction of winter forage species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Duilio Guerra Bandinelli

    2005-02-01

    Full Text Available Uma das características das pastagens naturais do Rio Grande do Sul é a baixa produtividade de forragem no período do outono-inverno. Uma das alternativas para melhorar os sistemas de produção baseados nessas pastagens é a introdução de espécies forrageiras de crescimento inverno-primaveril e a fertilização e correção da acidez do solo. O presente trabalho teve por objetivo avaliar o efeito de fontes de fósforo, calcário e introdução de espécies forrageiras de inverno na dinâmica das espécies de uma pastagem natural. Os tratamentos testados foram: T1 - superfosfato simples + calcário + introdução de espécies; T2 - superfosfato triplo + calcário + introdução de espécies; T3 - superfosfato triplo + introdução de espécies; T4 - hiperfosfato de Gafsa + introdução de espécies; T5 - introdução de espécies sem fósforo ou calagem; T6 - testemunha com pastagem natural. Para a avaliação da composição florística da pastagem foram realizados levantamentos botânicos periódicos, durante vinte e dois meses, utilizando-se o método BOTANAL. Os resultados mostraram que os tratamentos testados não provocaram mudanças na composição botânica das espécies nativas no período de tempo avaliado.Natural pastures of Rio Grande do Sul State, South of Brazil, have low forage productivity in the autumn-winter. An alternative to improve systems based on these pastures is introduction of winter forage species, fertilization and liming of soil. The present work had the objective of evaluating the effect of phosphorus sources, lime and introduction of winter forage species in the pasture botanical composition dynamics. The treatments used were: T1 - simple superphosphate + lime + winter forage species introduction; T2 - triple superphosphate + lime + winter forage species introduction; T3 - triple superphosphate + winter forage species introduction; T4 - Gafsa rock phosphate + winter forage species introduction; T5 - winter

  13. Totally impermeable film (TIF reduces emissions in perennial crop fumigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suduan Gao

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Many perennial nursery fields and replanted orchards and vineyards in California are treated with preplant soil fumigants to control soilborne pests. In annual crops, such as strawberry, covering fumigated fields with totally impermeable film (TIF has shown promise in controlling emissions and improving fumigant distribution in soil. The objective of this research was to optimize the use of TIF for perennial crops via three field trials. TIF reduced peak emission flux and cumulative emissions by > 90% relative to polyethylene tarp during a 2-week covering period. After the TIF was cut, emissions were greatly reduced compared to when tarps were cut after 6 days. TIF maintained higher fumigant concentrations under tarp and in the soil than polyethylene film. The results indicate that TIF can increase fumigation efficiency for perennial crop growers.

  14. Odours from marine plastic debris induce food search behaviours in a forage fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savoca, Matthew S; Tyson, Chris W; McGill, Michael; Slager, Christina J

    2017-08-16

    Plastic pollution is an anthropogenic stressor in marine ecosystems globally. Many species of marine fish (more than 50) ingest plastic debris. Ingested plastic has a variety of lethal and sublethal impacts and can be a route for bioaccumulation of toxic compounds throughout the food web. Despite its pervasiveness and severity, our mechanistic understanding of this maladaptive foraging behaviour is incomplete. Recent evidence suggests that the chemical signature of plastic debris may explain why certain species are predisposed to mistaking plastic for food. Anchovy ( Engraulis sp.) are abundant forage fish in coastal upwelling systems and a critical prey resource for top predators. Anchovy ingest plastic in natural conditions, though the mechanism they use to misidentify plastic as prey is unknown. Here, we presented wild-caught schools of northern anchovy ( Engraulis mordax ) with odour solutions made of plastic debris and clean plastic to compare school-wide aggregation and rheotactic responses relative to food and food odour presentations. Anchovy schools responded to plastic debris odour with increased aggregation and reduced rheotaxis. These results were similar to the effects food and food odour presentations had on schools. Conversely, these behavioural responses were absent in clean plastic and control treatments. To our knowledge, this is the first experimental evidence that adult anchovy use odours to forage. We conclude that the chemical signature plastic debris acquires in the photic zone can induce foraging behaviours in anchovy schools. These findings provide further support for a chemosensory mechanism underlying plastic consumption by marine wildlife. Given the trophic position of forage fish, these findings have considerable implications for aquatic food webs and possibly human health. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Social learning of an associative foraging task in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zala, Sarah M.; Määttänen, Ilmari

    2013-05-01

    The zebrafish ( Danio rerio) is increasingly becoming an important model species for studies on the genetic and neural mechanisms controlling behaviour and cognition. Here, we utilized a conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm to study social learning in zebrafish. We tested whether social interactions with conditioned demonstrators enhance the ability of focal naïve individuals to learn an associative foraging task. We found that the presence of conditioned demonstrators improved focal fish foraging behaviour through the process of social transmission, whereas the presence of inexperienced demonstrators interfered with the learning of the control focal fish. Our results indicate that zebrafish use social learning for finding food and that this CPP paradigm is an efficient assay to study social learning and memory in zebrafish.

  16. Segregating the Effects of Seed Traits and Common Ancestry of Hardwood Trees on Eastern Gray Squirrel Foraging Decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundaram, Mekala; Willoughby, Janna R; Lichti, Nathanael I; Steele, Michael A; Swihart, Robert K

    2015-01-01

    The evolution of specific seed traits in scatter-hoarded tree species often has been attributed to granivore foraging behavior. However, the degree to which foraging investments and seed traits correlate with phylogenetic relationships among trees remains unexplored. We presented seeds of 23 different hardwood tree species (families Betulaceae, Fagaceae, Juglandaceae) to eastern gray squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis), and measured the time and distance travelled by squirrels that consumed or cached each seed. We estimated 11 physical and chemical seed traits for each species, and the phylogenetic relationships between the 23 hardwood trees. Variance partitioning revealed that considerable variation in foraging investment was attributable to seed traits alone (27-73%), and combined effects of seed traits and phylogeny of hardwood trees (5-55%). A phylogenetic PCA (pPCA) on seed traits and tree phylogeny resulted in 2 "global" axes of traits that were phylogenetically autocorrelated at the family and genus level and a third "local" axis in which traits were not phylogenetically autocorrelated. Collectively, these axes explained 30-76% of the variation in squirrel foraging investments. The first global pPCA axis, which produced large scores for seed species with thin shells, low lipid and high carbohydrate content, was negatively related to time to consume and cache seeds and travel distance to cache. The second global pPCA axis, which produced large scores for seeds with high protein, low tannin and low dormancy levels, was an important predictor of consumption time only. The local pPCA axis primarily reflected kernel mass. Although it explained only 12% of the variation in trait space and was not autocorrelated among phylogenetic clades, the local axis was related to all four squirrel foraging investments. Squirrel foraging behaviors are influenced by a combination of phylogenetically conserved and more evolutionarily labile seed traits that is consistent with a weak

  17. Characterization of gene expression associated with drought avoidance and tolerance traits in a perennial grass species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Zhou

    Full Text Available To understand molecular mechanisms of perennial grass adaptation to drought stress, genes associated with drought avoidance or tolerance traits were identified and their expression patterns were characterized in C4 hybrid bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L. Pers.×C. transvaalensis Burtt Davy, cv. Tifway] and common bermudagrass (C. dactylon, cv. C299. Plants of drought-tolerant 'Tifway' and drought-sensitive 'C299' were exposed to drought for 5 d (mild stress and 10 d (severe stress by withholding irrigation in a growth chamber. 'Tifway' maintained significantly lower electrolyte leakage and higher relative water content than 'C299' at both 5 and 10 d of drought stress. Four cDNA libraries via suppression subtractive hybridization analysis were constructed and identified 277 drought-responsive genes in the two genotypes at 5 and 10 d of drought stress, which were mainly classified into the functional categories of stress defense, metabolism, osmoregulation, membrane system, signal and regulator, structural protein, protein synthesis and degradation, and energy metabolism. Quantitative-PCR analysis confirmed the expression of 36 drought up-regulated genes that were more highly expressed in drought-tolerant 'Tifway' than drought-sensitive 'C299', including those for drought avoidance traits, such as cuticle wax formation (CER1 and sterol desaturase, for drought tolerance traits, such as dehydration-protective proteins (dehydrins, HVA-22-like protein and oxidative stress defense (superoxide dismutase, dehydroascorbate reductase, 2-Cys peroxiredoxins, and for stress signaling (EREBP-4 like protein and WRKY transcription factor. The results suggest that the expression of genes for stress signaling, cuticle wax accumulation, antioxidant defense, and dehydration-protective protein accumulation could be critically important for warm-season perennial grass adaptation to long-term drought stress.

  18. Consequences of buffelgrass pasture development for primary productivity, perennial plant richness, and vegetation structure in the drylands of Sonora, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, Kimberly; Molina-Freaner, Francisco

    2010-12-01

    In large parts of northern Mexico native plant communities are being converted to non-native buffelgrass (Pennisetum ciliare) pastures, and this conversion could fundamentally alter primary productivity and species richness. In Sonora, Mexico land conversion is occurring at a regional scale along a rainfall-driven gradient of primary productivity, across which native plant communities transition from desert scrub to thorn scrub. We used a paired sampling design to compare a satellite-derived index of primary productivity, richness of perennial plant species, and canopy-height profiles of native plant communities with buffelgrass pastures. We sampled species richness across a gradient of primary productivity in desert scrub and thorn scrub vegetation to examine the influence of site productivity on the outcomes of land conversion. We also examined the influence of pasture age on species richness of perennial plants. Index values of primary productivity were lower in buffelgrass pastures than in native vegetation, which suggests a reduction in primary productivity. Land conversion reduced species richness by approximately 50% at local and regional scales, reduced tree and shrub cover by 78%, and reduced canopy height. Land conversion disproportionately reduced shrub species richness, which reflects the common practice among Sonoran ranchers of conserving certain tree and cactus species. Site productivity did not affect the outcomes of land conversion. The age of a buffelgrass pasture was unrelated to species richness within the pasture, which suggests that passive recovery of species richness to preconversion levels is unlikely. Our findings demonstrate that land conversion can result in large losses of plant species richness at local and regional scales and in substantial changes to primary productivity and vegetation structure, which casts doubt on the feasibility of restoring native plant communities without active intervention on the part of land managers.

  19. Environmental variability drives shifts in the foraging behaviour and reproductive success of an inshore seabird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalczyk, Nicole D; Reina, Richard D; Preston, Tiana J; Chiaradia, André

    2015-08-01

    Marine animals forage in areas that aggregate prey to maximize their energy intake. However, these foraging 'hot spots' experience environmental variability, which can substantially alter prey availability. To survive and reproduce animals need to modify their foraging in response to these prey shifts. By monitoring their inter-annual foraging behaviours, we can understand which environmental variables affect their foraging efficiency, and can assess how they respond to environmental variability. Here, we monitored the foraging behaviour and isotopic niche of little penguins (Eudyptula minor), over 3 years (2008, 2011, and 2012) of climatic and prey variability within Port Phillip Bay, Australia. During drought (2008), penguins foraged in close proximity to the Yarra River outlet on a predominantly anchovy-based diet. In periods of heavy rainfall, when water depth in the largest tributary into the bay (Yarra River) was high, the total distance travelled, maximum distance travelled, distance to core-range, and size of core- and home-ranges of penguins increased significantly. This larger foraging range was associated with broad dietary diversity and high reproductive success. These results suggest the increased foraging range and dietary diversity of penguins were a means to maximize resource acquisition rather than a strategy to overcome local depletions in prey. Our results demonstrate the significance of the Yarra River in structuring predator-prey interactions in this enclosed bay, as well as the flexible foraging strategies of penguins in response to environmental variability. This plasticity is central to the survival of this small-ranging, resident seabird species.

  20. Complex foraging ecology of the red harvester ant and its effect on the soil seed bank

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna, Pedro; García-Chávez, Juan Héctor; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2018-01-01

    Granivory is an important interaction in the arid and semi-arid zones of the world, since seeds form an abundant and nutritious resource in these areas. While species of the genus Pogonomyrmex have been studied in detail as seed predators, their impact on seed abundance in the soil has not yet been explored in sufficient depth. We studied the impact of the harvesting activities of the ant Pogonomyrmex barbatus on seed abundance in the soil of the Zapotitlán valley, Mexico. We found that P. barbatus activity significantly impacts the abundance of seeds in the soil, which is lower in the sites where P. barbatus forages than it is in sites with no recorded foraging. We also found that P. barbatus distributes intact seeds of three tree species, two of which are nurse plants, and could consequently be promoting the establishment of these species. Using tools derived from graph theory, we observed that the ant-seed interactions exhibit a nested pattern; where more depredated seed species seem to be the more spatially abundant in the environment. This study illustrates the complex foraging ecology of the harvester ant P. barbatus and elucidates its effect on the soil seed bank in a semi-arid environment.

  1. Analysis of Inter- and Intra-individual Variation in Foraging Habits of the Endangered Hawaiian Petrel Using Stables Isotopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morra, K. E.; Ostrom, P. H.; Wiley, A. E.; James, H. F.; Stricker, C. A.; Gandhi, H.

    2014-12-01

    Stable isotope analysis of the endangered Hawaiian petrel's (Pterodroma sandwichensis, HAPE) feathers provides otherwise intractable information regarding non-breeding season foraging habits. Adult HAPE spend 3.5-6 months at sea during the non-breeding season, at which time they sequentially molt their flight feathers. Because feathers are metabolically inert once synthesized, they capture isotopic signals while they are grown, providing an opportunity to study foraging habits over time. Here we use stable hydrogen (δD), carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotopes to assess variation in foraging habits within and between individuals, and among four breeding colonies. δD is an indicator of prevalence of fish vs. invertebrates in the diet. In one analysis, we observed large variation in feather δD (125‰), with adults from Maui and Kauai having significantly higher δD values than corresponding hatch-year birds, indicating significant dietary differences between age groups. In a second analysis, we utilized δ13C and δ15N of Hawaii, Maui and Lanai adults, values which vary with trophic level and also at the base of the food web across HAPE's foraging range, potentially revealing information about feeding location, as well as diet. Furthermore, because the sequence of molt is known, we are able to determine whether individual foraging specialization (continued use of the same foraging behavior over time) exists in this species. To do this, we analyzed two primary feathers, P1 and P6, which reflect the beginning and the middle of the non-breeding season, respectively. We did not find significant differences in δ13C or δ15N between P1 and P6, suggesting consistent foraging habits within individuals over time. This provides evidence that individual foraging specialization exists within these populations. Analysis of a secondary feather grown late in the molt sequence would further illuminate the extent of foraging specialization. Finally, δ15N differs

  2. Foraging segregation and genetic divergence between geographically proximate colonies of a highly mobile seabird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiley, Anne E.; Welch, Andreanna J.; Ostrom, P.H.; James, Helen F.; Stricker, C.A.; Fleischer, R.C.; Gandhi, H.; Adams, J.; Ainley, D.G.; Duvall, F.; Holmes, N.; Hu, D.; Judge, S.; Penniman, J.; Swindle, K.A.

    2012-01-01

    Foraging segregation may play an important role in the maintenance of animal diversity, and is a proposed mechanism for promoting genetic divergence within seabird species. However, little information exists regarding its presence among seabird populations. We investigated genetic and foraging divergence between two colonies of endangered Hawaiian petrels (Pterodroma sandwichensis) nesting on the islands of Hawaii and Kauai using the mitochondrial Cytochrome b gene and carbon, nitrogen and hydrogen isotope values (?? 13C, ?? 15N and ??D, respectively) of feathers. Genetic analyses revealed strong differentiation between colonies on Hawaii and Kauai, with ?? ST = 0. 50 (p Feather ??D varied from -69 to 53???. This variation cannot be related solely to an isotopically homogeneous ocean water source or evaporative water loss. Instead, we propose the involvement of salt gland excretion. Our data demonstrate the presence of foraging segregation between proximately nesting seabird populations, despite high species mobility. This ecological diversity may facilitate population coexistence, and its preservation should be a focus of conservation strategies. ?? 2011 Springer-Verlag (outside the USA).

  3. Evaluation of wild animals browsing preferences in forage resources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Argenti

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Excessive presence of wild ungulates can produce negative effects on herbaceous crops or woody species, and to face this problem, habitat improvements are often performed to recreate suitable environments for a given animal species and to attract animals far from cultivated crops. A common example of these interventions is represented by grassland restoration and to evaluate the real animal preferences on restored forage resources a proper trial was established in a hilly area of Tuscany (central Italy, inside the historical Park of Pratolino, near Florence. The trial compared six different forage species or mixtures sown in plots: vegetal material was represented by two pure stands (Onobrychis viciifolia and Medicago sativa and four mixtures differing in number and kind of used species. Plots were utilised only by wild animals occurring in the area. Data collection consisted of botanical samples in each plot in different periods to obtain the percent presence of each species. At the same time, a visual estimation of animal intake on all occurring species was performed to obtain the browsing ratio of single species and overall defoliation rate for each species/mixture. Moreover, six camera traps were placed on the boundary of the experimental site to record videos of wild animals browsing in the area for identification of animals actually occurring on different plots and for comparison of these results with botanical data. Vegetation surveys permitted a proper evaluation of animals intake and of their feeding preferences. In general, sown species performed a major role in animal browsing, even if in some periods also a few native species (such as Plantago lanceolata or Cichorium intybus were utilised in a strong way, depending on vegetation context and existing biomass. Camera traps results permitted the identification of browsing animal species (mainly represented by roe deer and plots frequentation resulted to be highly related to animal

  4. Changes in understory species occurrence of a secondary broadleaved forest after mass mortality of oak trees under deer foraging pressure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroki Itô

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The epidemic of mass mortality of oak trees by Japanese oak wilt has affected secondary deciduous broadleaved forests that have been used as coppices in Japan. The dieback of oak trees formed gaps in the crown that would be expected to enhance the regeneration of shade-intolerant pioneer species. However, foraging by sika deer Cervus nippon has also affected forest vegetation, and the compound effects of both on forest regeneration should be considered when they simultaneously occur. A field study was conducted in Kyôto City, Japan to investigate how these compound effects affected the vegetation of the understory layer of these forests. The presence/absence of seedlings and saplings was observed for 200 quadrats sized 5 m ×5 m for each species in 1992, before the mass mortality and deer encroachment, and in 2014 after these effects. A hierarchical Bayesian model was constructed to explain the occurrence, survival, and colonization of each species with their responses to the gaps that were created, expanded, or affected by the mass mortality of Quercus serrata trees. The species that occurred most frequently in 1992, Eurya japonica, Quercus glauca, and Cleyera japonica, also had the highest survival probabilities. Deer-unpalatable species such as Symplocos prunifolia and Triadica sebifera had higher colonization rates in the gaps, while the deer-palatable species Aucuba japonica had the smallest survival probability. The gaps thus promoted the colonization of deer-unpalatable plant species such as Symplocos prunifolia and Triadica sebifera. In the future, such deer-unpalatable species may dominate gaps that were created, expanded, or affected by the mass mortality of oak trees.

  5. Food limitation of sea lion pups and the decline of forage off central and southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClatchie, Sam; Field, John; Thompson, Andrew R.; Gerrodette, Tim; Lowry, Mark; Fiedler, Paul C.; Watson, William; Nieto, Karen M.; Vetter, Russell D.

    2016-01-01

    California sea lions increased from approximately 50 000 to 340 000 animals in the last 40 years, and their pups are starving and stranding on beaches in southern California, raising questions about the adequacy of their food supply. We investigated whether the declining sea lion pup weight at San Miguel rookery was associated with changes in abundance and quality of sardine, anchovy, rockfish and market squid forage. In the last decade off central California, where breeding female sea lions from San Miguel rookery feed, sardine and anchovy greatly decreased in biomass, whereas market squid and rockfish abundance increased. Pup weights fell as forage food quality declined associated with changes in the relative abundances of forage species. A model explained 67% of the variance in pup weights using forage from central and southern California and 81% of the variance in pup weights using forage from the female sea lion foraging range. A shift from high to poor quality forage for breeding females results in food limitation of the pups, ultimately flooding animal rescue centres with starving sea lion pups. Our study is unusual in using a long-term, fishery-independent dataset to directly address an important consequence of forage decline on the productivity of a large marine predator. Whether forage declines are environmentally driven, are due to a combination of environmental drivers and fishing removals, or are due to density-dependent interactions between forage and sea lions is uncertain. However, declining forage abundance and quality was coherent over a large area (32.5–38° N) for a decade, suggesting that trends in forage are environmentally driven. PMID:27069651

  6. Bacterial endophytes of perennial crops for management of plant disease

    OpenAIRE

    Melnick, Rachel L.; Bailey, B.A.; Backman, Paul A.

    2013-01-01

    Metadata only record Bacterial endophytes, microorganisms which inhabit the internal tissues of plants, can suppress disease and are often used as a biological control in annual crops. Less research, however, has been applied to the use of bacterial endophytes to prevent disease in perennial crops, which presents a more complex challenge. However, exploration of their potential as a biological control in perennial crops has been limited. This chapter assembles current knowledge on the subj...

  7. Optimal Foraging in Semantic Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hills, Thomas T.; Jones, Michael N.; Todd, Peter M.

    2012-01-01

    Do humans search in memory using dynamic local-to-global search strategies similar to those that animals use to forage between patches in space? If so, do their dynamic memory search policies correspond to optimal foraging strategies seen for spatial foraging? Results from a number of fields suggest these possibilities, including the shared…

  8. Secondary metabolites as anti-nutritional factors in locally used halophytic forage/fodder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ehsen, S.; Qasim, M.; Abideen, Z.; Rizve, R. F.; Gul, B.; Ansari, R.

    2016-01-01

    Rampant salinity coupled with population explosion necessitates search for suitable alternatives to conventional sources of food both for human and animal consumption. While it may be difficult to change our culinary preferences, training animals to adopt a changed diet of nonconventional salt tolerant plants is easier. Using these wild plants however, requires estimation of undesirable secondary metabolites (SMs) produced during stressful conditions, which may be harmful for health of animals. Some of these anti-nutritional components (total phenols, flavonoids, tannins, nitrates, saponins and oxalates) were determined in 22 halophytes locally used as fodder/forage. Most of the species were perennial shrubs and herbs of an area where environmental conditions like high mean annual temperature (∼35 degree C), low rainfall (< 250mm) with soil mostly dry (average 2 percent moisture) and saline (average EC 13 dSm/sup -1/) supported the growth of halophytes and xerophytes. Values of SMs in the studied plants ranged from 0.13-4.05 percent for total phenols, 0.38-6.99 percent for tannins, 0.15-1.50 percent for flavonoids, 0.10-1.15 percent for nitrates, 0.45-8.68 percent for saponins and 0.36-2.34 percent for oxalates. Most of the species (19) contained low to moderate amount of individual as well as total SMs which were within the non-toxic ranges. However, three species distributed in coastal habitats where average soil salinity (27.67 dSm-1) was considerably higher than inland ones (7.09 dSm-1) had SMs contents above the safe limits. It is evident from these Results that most of these plants contained moderate to low levels of anti-nutritional factors, which lies under the safe limits and hence, could be used as a potential feed source to raise animals, particularly in arid/semiarid areas. Additionally, these plants represents a viable choice as they can be grown without encroaching on agricultural lands and fresh water resources and could promote livestock

  9. Where to Forage in the Absence of Sea Ice? Bathymetry As a Key Factor for an Arctic Seabird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Françoise Amélineau

    Full Text Available The earth is warming at an alarming rate, especially in the Arctic, where a marked decline in sea ice cover may have far-ranging consequences for endemic species. Little auks, endemic Arctic seabirds, are key bioindicators as they forage in the marginal ice zone and feed preferentially on lipid-rich Arctic copepods and ice-associated amphipods sensitive to the consequences of global warming. We tested how little auks cope with an ice-free foraging environment during the breeding season. To this end, we took advantage of natural variation in sea ice concentration along the east coast of Greenland. We compared foraging and diving behaviour, chick diet and growth and adult body condition between two years, in the presence versus nearby absence of sea ice in the vicinity of their breeding site. Moreover, we sampled zooplankton at sea when sea ice was absent to evaluate prey location and little auk dietary preferences. Little auks foraged in the same areas both years, irrespective of sea ice presence/concentration, and targeted the shelf break and the continental shelf. We confirmed that breeding little auks showed a clear preference for larger copepod species to feed their chick, but caught smaller copepods and nearly no ice-associated amphipod when sea ice was absent. Nevertheless, these dietary changes had no impact on chick growth and adult body condition. Our findings demonstrate the importance of bathymetry for profitable little auk foraging, whatever the sea-ice conditions. Our investigations, along with recent studies, also confirm more flexibility than previously predicted for this key species in a warming Arctic.

  10. Are stress hormone levels a good proxy of foraging success? An experiment with king penguins, Aptenodytes patagonicus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelier, Frédéric; Giraudeau, Mathieu; Bost, Charles-André; Le Bouard, Fabrice; Chastel, Olivier

    2009-09-01

    In seabirds, variations in stress hormone (corticosterone; henceforth CORT) levels have been shown to reflect changing marine conditions and, especially, changes in food availability. However, it remains unclear how CORT levels can be mechanistically affected by these changes at the individual level. Specifically, the influence of food acquisition and foraging success on CORT secretion is poorly understood. In this study, we tested whether food acquisition can reduce baseline CORT levels (;the food intake hypothesis') by experimentally reducing foraging success of King Penguins (Aptenodytes patagonicus). Although CORT levels overall decreased during a foraging trip, CORT levels did not differ between experimental birds and controls. These results demonstrate that mass gain at sea is not involved in changes in baseline CORT levels in this species. The overall decrease in CORT levels during a foraging trip could result from CORT-mediated energy regulation (;the energy utilisation hypothesis'). Along with other evidence, we suggest that the influence of foraging success and food intake on CORT levels is complex and that the ecological meaning of baseline CORT levels can definitely vary between species and ecological contexts. Therefore, further studies are needed to better understand (1) how baseline CORT levels are functionally regulated according to energetic status and energetic demands and (2) to what extent CORT can be used to aid in the conservation of seabird populations.

  11. Cumulative drought and land-use impacts on perennial vegetation across a North American dryland region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munson, Seth M.; Long, A. Lexine; Wallace, Cynthia; Webb, Robert H.

    2016-01-01

    Question The decline and loss of perennial vegetation in dryland ecosystems due to global change pressures can alter ecosystem properties and initiate land degradation processes. We tracked changes of perennial vegetation using remote sensing to address the question of how prolonged drought and land-use intensification have affected perennial vegetation cover across a desert region in the early 21st century? Location Mojave Desert, southeastern California, southern Nevada, southwestern Utah and northwestern Arizona, USA. Methods We coupled the Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Enhanced Vegetation Index (MODIS-EVI) with ground-based measurements of perennial vegetation cover taken in about 2000 and about 2010. Using the difference between these years, we determined perennial vegetation changes in the early 21st century and related these shifts to climate, soil and landscape properties, and patterns of land use. Results We found a good fit between MODIS-EVI and perennial vegetation cover (2000: R2 = 0.83 and 2010: R2 = 0.74). The southwestern, far southeastern and central Mojave Desert had large declines in perennial vegetation cover in the early 21st century, while the northeastern and southeastern portions of the desert had increases. These changes were explained by 10-yr precipitation anomalies, particularly in the cool season and during extreme dry or wet years. Areas heavily impacted by visitor use or wildfire lost perennial vegetation cover, and vegetation in protected areas increased to a greater degree than in unprotected areas. Conclusions We find that we can extrapolate previously documented declines of perennial plant cover to an entire desert, and demonstrate that prolonged water shortages coupled with land-use intensification create identifiable patterns of vegetation change in dryland regions.

  12. Large-scale climatic anomalies affect marine predator foraging behaviour and demography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bost, Charles A.; Cotté, Cedric; Terray, Pascal; Barbraud, Christophe; Bon, Cécile; Delord, Karine; Gimenez, Olivier; Handrich, Yves; Naito, Yasuhiko; Guinet, Christophe; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-10-01

    Determining the links between the behavioural and population responses of wild species to environmental variations is critical for understanding the impact of climate variability on ecosystems. Using long-term data sets, we show how large-scale climatic anomalies in the Southern Hemisphere affect the foraging behaviour and population dynamics of a key marine predator, the king penguin. When large-scale subtropical dipole events occur simultaneously in both subtropical Southern Indian and Atlantic Oceans, they generate tropical anomalies that shift the foraging zone southward. Consequently the distances that penguins foraged from the colony and their feeding depths increased and the population size decreased. This represents an example of a robust and fast impact of large-scale climatic anomalies affecting a marine predator through changes in its at-sea behaviour and demography, despite lack of information on prey availability. Our results highlight a possible behavioural mechanism through which climate variability may affect population processes.

  13. Inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) loci mapping in the genome of perennial ryegrass

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pivorienė, O; Pašakinskienė, I; Brazauskas, G

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this study was to identify and characterize new ISSR markers and their loci in the genome of perennial ryegrass. A subsample of the VrnA F2 mapping family of perennial ryegrass comprising 92 individuals was used to develop a linkage map including inter-simple sequence repeat markers...... demonstrated a 70% similarity to the Hordeum vulgare germin gene GerA. Inter-SSR mapping will provide useful information for gene targeting, quantitative trait loci mapping and marker-assisted selection in perennial ryegrass....

  14. Trophic strategy of Atlantirivulus riograndensis (Cyprinodontiformes: Rivulidae, a non-annual rivulid threatened by extinction, in a perennial environment, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laísa Wociechoski Cavalheiro

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Rivulidae includes non-annual fish of perennial habitats and annual fish of temporary wetlands. The objective of this research was to investigate the trophic strategy of Atlantirivulus riograndensis in a perennial environment. Sampling occurred in an environmental conservation unit in the Pampa biome, Brazil. Quantification of the diet followed the volumetric method. Consumption of autochthonous material as the main food source of the species followed the pattern of Rivulidae. Species is zooplanktonic when young. Food spectrum is broadened and insectivorousness increases with ontogeny, revealing a specialist trend in the feeding strategy of A. riograndensis. The most diverse feeding occurs in the spring and summer seasons in which the presence of larger fish was more frequent than in other seasons. The increased consumption of microcrustaceans in the fall was related to smaller individuals, captured in greater quantities in this post-reproductive period. The lowest diversity of dietary items occurs during the winter and may reflect the lower diversity of food resources available in this season or the transition from juvenile to adult diet, with consumption of autochthonous Diptera by medium sized fish.

  15. Sympatric cattle grazing and desert bighorn sheep foraging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrison, Kyle R.; Cain, James W.; Rominger, Eric M.; Goldstein, Elise J.

    2015-01-01

    Foraging behavior affects animal fitness and is largely dictated by the resources available to an animal. Understanding factors that affect forage resources is important for conservation and management of wildlife. Cattle sympatry is proposed to limit desert bighorn population performance, but few studies have quantified the effect of cattle foraging on bighorn forage resources or foraging behavior by desert bighorn. We estimated forage biomass for desert bighorn sheep in 2 mountain ranges: the cattle-grazed Caballo Mountains and the ungrazed San Andres Mountains, New Mexico. We recorded foraging bout efficiency of adult females by recording feeding time/step while foraging, and activity budgets of 3 age-sex classes (i.e., adult males, adult females, yearlings). We also estimated forage biomass at sites where bighorn were observed foraging. We expected lower forage biomass in the cattle-grazed Caballo range than in the ungrazed San Andres range and lower biomass at cattle-accessible versus inaccessible areas within the Caballo range. We predicted bighorn would be less efficient foragers in the Caballo range. Groundcover forage biomass was low in both ranges throughout the study (Jun 2012–Nov 2013). Browse biomass, however, was 4.7 times lower in the Caballo range versus the San Andres range. Bighorn in the Caballo range exhibited greater overall daily travel time, presumably to locate areas of higher forage abundance. By selecting areas with greater forage abundance, adult females in the Caballo range exhibited foraging bout efficiency similar to their San Andres counterparts but lower overall daily browsing time. We did not find a significant reduction in forage biomass at cattle-accessible areas in the Caballo range. Only the most rugged areas in the Caballo range had abundant forage, potentially a result of intensive historical livestock use in less rugged areas. Forage conditions in the Caballo range apparently force bighorn to increase foraging effort by

  16. Climate-driven Sympatry does not Lead to Foraging Competition Between Adélie and Gentoo Penguins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cimino, M. A.; Moline, M. A.; Fraser, W.; Patterson-Fraser, D.; Oliver, M. J.

    2016-02-01

    Climate-driven sympatry may lead to competition for food resources between species, population shifts and changes in ecosystem structure. Rapid warming in the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) is coincident with increasing gentoo penguin and decreasing Adélie penguin populations, suggesting that competition for food may exacerbate the Adélie penguin decline. At Palmer Station, we tested for foraging competition between these species by comparing their prey, Antarctic krill, distributions and penguin foraging behaviors on fine scales. To study these predator-prey dynamics, we simultaneously deployed penguin satellite transmitters, and a REMUS autonomous underwater vehicle that acoustically detected krill aggregations and measured physical and biological properties of the water column. We detected krill aggregations within the horizontal and vertical foraging ranges of Adélie and gentoo penguin. In the upper 100 m of the water column, the distribution of krill aggregations were mainly associated with CHL and light, suggesting that krill selected for habitats that balance the need to consume food and avoid predation. Adélie and gentoo penguins mainly had spatially segregated foraging areas but in areas of overlap, gentoo penguins switched foraging behavior by foraging at deeper depths, a strategy which limits competition with Adélie penguins. This suggests that climate-driven sympatry does not necessarily result in competitive exclusion. Contrary to a recent theory, which suggests that increased competition for krill is the major driver of Adélie penguin population declines, we suggest that declines in Adélie penguins along the WAP are more likely due to direct and indirect climate impacts on their life histories.

  17. Perennial Pepperweed Patches - San Francisco Estuary [ds295

    Data.gov (United States)

    California Natural Resource Agency — This layer contains polygon data for the perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium) database. This database represents distribution data collected within the areas...

  18. Vegetation composition and structure influences bird species ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Vegetation composition and structure influences bird species community ... variables on bird species diversity and richness of respective foraging guilds, and ... of the species assessed: (1) increasing closed cover due to woody plant density, ...

  19. Soil water status under perennial and annual pastures on an acid duplex soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heng, L.K.; White, R.E.; Chen, D.

    2000-01-01

    A comprehensive field study of soil water balance, nitrogen (N) cycling, pasture management and animal production was carried out on an acid duplex soil at Book Book near Wagga Wagga in southern New South Wales. The experiment, carried out over a 3-year period, tested the hypothesis that sown perennial grass pastures improve the sustainability of a grazing system through better use of water and N. The treatments were: annual pastures without lime (AP-), annual pastures with lime (AP+), perennial pastures without lime (PP-) and perennial pastures with lime (PP+). Soil water measurement was made using a neutron probe on one set of the treatments comprising four adjacent paddocks. Over three winter and spring periods, the results showed that perennial grass pastures, especially PP+, consistently extracted about 40 mm more soil water each year than did the annual grass pastures. As a result, surface runoff, sub-surface flow and deep drainage (percolation below 180 cm depth) were about 40 mm less from the perennial pastures. The soil water status of the four pasture treatments was simulated reasonably well using a simple soil water model. Together with the long-term simulation of deep drainage, using past meteorological records, it is shown that proper management of perennial pastures can reduce recharge to groundwater and make pastoral systems more sustainable in the high rainfall zone. However, to completely reduce recharge, more-deeply rooted plants or trees are needed. (author)

  20. By the Light of the Moon: North Pacific Dolphins Optimize Foraging with the Lunar Cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonis, Anne Elizabeth

    The influence of the lunar cycle on dolphin foraging behavior was investigated in the productive, southern California Current Ecosystem and the oligotrophic Hawaiian Archipelago. Passive acoustic recordings from 2009 to 2015 were analyzed to document the presence of echolocation from four dolphin species that demonstrate distinct foraging preferences and diving abilities. Visual observations of dolphins, cloud coverage, commercial landings of market squid (Doryteuthis opalescens) and acoustic backscatter of fish were also considered in the Southern California Bight. The temporal variability of echolocation is described from daily to annual timescales, with emphasis on the lunar cycle as an established behavioral driver for potential dolphin prey. For dolphins that foraged at night, the presence of echolocation was reduced during nights of the full moon and during times of night that the moon was present in the night sky. In the Southern California Bight, echolocation activity was reduced for both shallow- diving common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and deeper-diving Risso's dolphins (Grampus griseus) during times of increased illumination. Seasonal differences in acoustic behavior for both species suggest a geographic shift in dolphin populations, shoaling scattering layers or prey switching behavior during warm months, whereby dolphins target prey that do not vertically migrate. In the Hawaiian Archipelago, deep-diving short-finned pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus) and shallow-diving false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens) also showed reduced echolocation behavior during periods of increased lunar illumination. In contrast to nocturnal foraging in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands, false killer whales in the main Hawaiian Islands mainly foraged during the day and the lunar cycle showed little influence on their nocturnal acoustic behavior. Different temporal patterns in false killer whale acoustic behavior between the main and northwestern Hawaiian

  1. The foraging ecology of the mountain long-eared bat Plecotus macrobullaris revealed with DNA mini-barcodes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antton Alberdi

    Full Text Available Molecular analysis of diet overcomes the considerable limitations of traditional techniques for identifying prey remains in bat faeces. We collected faeces from individual Mountain Long-eared Bats Plecotus macrobullaris trapped using mist nets during the summers of 2009 and 2010 in the Pyrenees. We analysed their diet using DNA mini-barcodes to identify prey species. In addition, we inferred some basic features of the bat's foraging ecology that had not yet been addressed. P. macrobullaris fed almost exclusively on moths (97.8%. As prey we detected one dipteran genus (Tipulidae and 29 moth taxa: 28 were identified at species level (23 Noctuidae, 1 Crambidae, 1 Geometridae, 1 Pyralidae, 1 Sphingidae, 1 Tortricidae, and one at genus level (Rhyacia sp., Noctuidae. Known ecological information about the prey species allowed us to determine that bats had foraged at elevations between 1,500 and 2,500 m amsl (above mean sea level, mostly in subalpine meadows, followed by other open habitats such as orophilous grasslands and alpine meadows. No forest prey species were identified in the diet. As 96.4% of identified prey species were tympanate moths and no evidence of gleaning behaviour was revealed, we suggest P. macrobullaris probably forages by aerial hawking using faint echolocation pulses to avoid detection by hearing moths. As we could identify 87.8% of the analysed sequences (64.1% of the MOTUs, Molecular Operational Taxonomic Units at species level, we conclude that DNA mini-barcodes are a very useful tool to analyse the diet of moth-specialist bats.

  2. Production of tropical forage grasses under different shading levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Eduardo Torres

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to evaluate the forage production of three tropical forage grasses under different shading levels. The experiment was conducted in a greenhouse at Universidade Estadual de Mato Grosso do Sul, University Unit of Aquidauana (UEMS/UUA, in a soil classified as Ultisol sandy loam texture. The treatments consisted of three grasses species combinations (B. brizantha cv. Marandu, B. decumbens cv. Basilisck and Panicum maximum cv. Tanzania, submitted to four shading levels (0, 30, 50 and 75%, arranged in a completely randomized blocks design in a factorial 3 x 4, with eight replications. After harvest, the plants were separated into shoot and roots for determination of shoot fresh mass (SFM, shoot dry mass (SDM and roots dry mass production. After analysis of variance, the qualitative factor was subjected to comparison of averages by Tukey’s test, and the quantitative factor to analysis of polynomial regression, being interactions appropriately unfolded. It was verified that B. decumbens, by its linearly increasing production of forage and less decrease of root formation, is the most recommended for shading conditions compared to grasses Tanzania and Marandu.

  3. Broomrape (Orobanche cumana Wallr.) resistance breeding utilizing wild Helianthus species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild Helianthus species possess valuable resistance genes for sunflower broomrape (Orobanche cumana Wallr.), especially the 39 largely under-utilized perennial species. Resistance to race F has been transferred into cultivated background via bridging of interspecific amphiploids. More recently, a si...

  4. Evaporite deposition in a shallow perennial lake, Qaidam basin, western China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schubel, K.A.; Lowenstein, T.K. (SUNY, Binghampton, NY (United States)); Spencer, R.J. (Univ. of Calgary, Alberta (Canada)); Pengxi, Z. (Institute of Salt Lakes, Xining (China))

    1991-03-01

    Evaporites accumulate in ephemeral saline-pans, shallow perennial lakes or lagoons, and deep perennial systems. Continuous brine trench exposures of Holocene evaporites from the Qaidam basin provide criteria for the recognition of shallow perennial lake sediments. Based on Landsat photographs, lateral extent of beds (at least 7 km), and sequence thicknesses (maximum 2.5 m), the paleolake is interpreted to have been less than 2.5 m deep and at least 120 km{sup 2} in area. Sediments consist of laminated siliciclastic mud overlain by mud-halite couplets (mm- to cm-scale layers), which represent one vertical shallowing- and concentrating-upwards sequence. The basal laminite marks the onset of deposition in this shallow perennial paleolake. Syndepositional halite textures and fabrics in the overlying mud-halite couplets include cumulates, rafts, and chevrons, draped by mud laminae, and halite layers truncated by horizontal dissolution surfaces (increasing in frequency upwards). Paleolake brines, determined from fluid inclusion melting temperatures, are Na-Mg-Cl-rich and evolve from 0.84 m Mg{sup 2} to 1.52 m Mg{sup 2+} (near the surface). Combinations of the following criteria may be used for the recognition of shallow, nonstratified, perennial lake sediments: lateral continuity of layers; muds undisrupted by subaerial exposure; vertical bottom-growth of halite; halite layers conformably overlain by mud; halite layers truncated by nonuniformly spaced horizontal dissolution surfaces; erosional scours and channels filled with cross-laminated gypsum, halite, and siliciclastic sand and mud; and salinity fluctuations over small stratigraphic intervals within an overall concentrating-upwards sequence.

  5. Forage Quality Determined by Botanic Species’ Contribution on Permanent Pastures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neculai Dragomir

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The chemical composition of the forage obtained from permanent pastures is determined, in its turn, by the floristic structure consisted of species belonging to various botanic families. Each botanic species presents a specific chemical content and a certain contribution to the balancing of forage’s nutritional value. The chemical analyses performed, at species level, revealed the importance of the “diverse” species, which, with their content in mineral elements, may influence animals’ capacity of production and reproduction. Some of the species, considered to be weeds within the permanent pastures’ floristic composition, presented high crude protein content values: Achillea millefolium with 24.22%, Taraxacum officinale 24.06%, Urtica dioica with 32.46%, Plantago major with 17.04%, etc.

  6. Foraging behaviour of juvenile female New Zealand sea lions (Phocarctos hookeri in contrasting environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine S Leung

    Full Text Available Foragers can show adaptive responses to changes within their environment through morphological and behavioural plasticity. We investigated the plasticity in body size, at sea movements and diving behaviour of juvenile female New Zealand (NZ sea lions (Phocarctos hookeri in two contrasting environments. The NZ sea lion is one of the rarest pinnipeds in the world. Most of the species is based at the subantarctic Auckland Islands (AI; considered to be marginal foraging habitat, with a recolonizing population on the Otago Peninsula, NZ mainland (considered to be more optimal habitat. We investigated how juvenile NZ sea lions adjust their foraging behaviour in contrasting environments by deploying satellite-linked platform transmitting terminals (PTTs and time-depth recorders (TDRs on 2-3 year-old females at AI (2007-2010 and Otago (2009-2010. Juvenile female NZ sea lions exhibited plasticity in body size and behaviour. Otago juveniles were significantly heavier than AI juveniles. Linear mixed effects models showed that study site had the most important effect on foraging behaviour, while mass and age had little influence. AI juveniles spent more time at sea, foraged over larger areas, and dove deeper and longer than Otago juveniles. It is difficult to attribute a specific cause to the observed contrasts in foraging behaviour because these differences may be driven by disparities in habitat/prey characteristics, conspecific density levels or interseasonal variation. Nevertheless, the smaller size and increased foraging effort of AI juveniles, combined with the lower productivity in this region, support the hypothesis that AI are less optimal habitat than Otago. It is more difficult for juveniles to forage in suboptimal habitats given their restricted foraging ability and lower tolerance for food limitation compared to adults. Thus, effective management measures should consider the impacts of low resource environments, along with changes that can

  7. Allelic Variation in the Perennial Ryegrass FLOWERING LOCUS T Gene is Associated with Changes in Flowering Time across a Range of Populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skøt, Leif; Sanderson, Ruth; Thomas, Ann

    2011-01-01

    The Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) gene and its orthologs in other plant species (e.g. rice [Oryza sativa] OsFTL2/Hd3a) have an established role in the photoperiodic induction of flowering response. The genomic and phenotypic variations associated with the perennial...

  8. Perennial wheat lines have highly admixed population structure and elevated rates of outcrossing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perennial wheat has been proposed to alleviate long standing issues with soil erosion in annual cropping systems, while supporting rural communities and providing grain farmers with a marketable climate-resilient crop. The Washington State University perennial wheat breeding program has created sev...

  9. Corticosterone and foraging behavior in a diving seabird: the Adélie penguin, Pygoscelis adeliae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelier, Frédéric; Bost, Charles-André; Giraudeau, Mathieu; Bouteloup, Guillaume; Dano, Stéphanie; Chastel, Olivier

    2008-03-01

    Because hormones mediate physiological or behavioral responses to intrinsic or extrinsic stimuli, they can help us understand how animals adapt their foraging decisions to energetic demands of reproduction. Thus, the hormone corticosterone deserves specific attention because of its influence on metabolism, food intake and locomotor activities. We examined the relationships between baseline corticosterone levels and foraging behavior or mass gain at sea in a diving seabird, the Adélie penguin, Pygoscelis adeliae. Data were obtained from free-ranging penguins during the brooding period (Adélie Land, Antarctica) by using satellite transmitters and time-depth-recorders. The birds were weighed and blood sampled before and after a foraging trip (pre-trip and post-trip corticosterone levels, respectively). Penguins with elevated pre-trip corticosterone levels spent less time at sea and stayed closer to the colony than penguins with low pre-trip corticosterone levels. These short trips were associated with a higher foraging effort in terms of diving activity and a lower mass gain at sea than long trips. According to previous studies conducted on seabird species, these results suggest that penguins with elevated pre-trip corticosterone levels might maximize the rate of energy delivery to the chicks at the expense of their body reserves. Moreover, in all birds, corticosterone levels were lower post-foraging than pre-foraging. This decrease could result from either the restoration of body reserves during the foraging trip or from a break in activity at the end of the foraging trip. This study demonstrates for the first time in a diving predator the close relationships linking foraging behavior and baseline corticosterone levels. We suggest that slight elevations in pre-trip corticosterone levels could play a major role in breeding effort by facilitating foraging activity in breeding seabirds.

  10. A DArT marker genetic map of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) integrated with detailed comparative mapping information; comparison with existing DArT marker genetic maps of Lolium perenne, L. multiflorum and Festuca pratensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Julie; Thomas, Ann; James, Caron; King, Ian; Armstead, Ian

    2013-07-03

    Ryegrasses and fescues (genera, Lolium and Festuca) are species of forage and turf grasses which are used widely in agricultural and amenity situations. They are classified within the sub-family Pooideae and so are closely related to Brachypodium distachyon, wheat, barley, rye and oats. Recently, a DArT array has been developed which can be used in generating marker and mapping information for ryegrasses and fescues. This represents a potential common marker set for ryegrass and fescue researchers which can be linked through to comparative genomic information for the grasses. A F2 perennial ryegrass genetic map was developed consisting of 7 linkage groups defined by 1316 markers and deriving a total map length of 683 cM. The marker set included 866 DArT and 315 gene sequence-based markers. Comparison with previous DArT mapping studies in perennial and Italian ryegrass (L. multiflorum) identified 87 and 105 DArT markers in common, respectively, of which 94% and 87% mapped to homoeologous linkage groups. A similar comparison with meadow fescue (F. pratensis) identified only 28 DArT markers in common, of which c. 50% mapped to non-homoelogous linkage groups. In L. perenne, the genetic distance spanned by the DArT markers encompassed the majority of the regions that could be described in terms of comparative genomic relationships with rice, Brachypodium distachyon, and Sorghum bicolor. DArT markers are likely to be a useful common marker resource for ryegrasses and fescues, though the success in aligning different populations through the mapping of common markers will be influenced by degrees of population interrelatedness. The detailed mapping of DArT and gene-based markers in this study potentially allows comparative relationships to be derived in future mapping populations characterised using solely DArT markers.

  11. Influencia de la fertilización, la época y la especie forrajera en la presencia Influence of fertilization, season, and forage species in presence of arbuscular mycorrhizae in a degraded Andisoil of Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnulfo Gómez-Carabalí

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Para determinar la influencia de la fertilización, época, y especies forrajeras en la producción de micorrizas arbusculares se realizó un experimento con una gramínea C4, (Brachiaria dictyoneura), dos leguminosas forrajeras C3 (Arachis pintoi y Centrosema macrocarpum) y la vegetación nativa; cultivadas en dos sistemas de siembra (monocultivo y asociación), dos niveles de fertilización (alto y bajo) y cuatro edades de cosecha. Se uso un diseño de parcelas sub-sub divididas, en el cual la parcela principal fue la especie, los niveles de fertilización como subparcelas y la edad de rebrote como la sub-sub parcela. El número de esporas de hongos micorrízicos en el suelo y el porcentaje de infección en las raíces se incrementó con la edad y varió con la especie y la época del muestreo (seca o húmeda). Se encontraron diferencias en la capacidad para formar simbiosis micorrízica entre las especies de gramíneas y leguminosas bajo condiciones de campo.In the Colombian coffee zone much of the land has infertile soils with an ongoing accelerated degradation. As vegetation has changed from forest to transitory base (cassava cropping) and overgrazed pastures, ground cover has decreased resulting in increasing runoff. These changes have contributed to severe erosion, decline in soil fertility, productivity, soil structure, and water quality as well as loss of biodiversity. A field study was conducted at the farm "La Esperanza" (Mondomo, Department of Cauca, Colombia, South-America). The main objective was to determine the influence of fertilization, season and forage species in Arbuscular Mycorrhyzae in a degraded Andisol. One C4 forage grass (Brachiaria dictyoneura) and two C3 forage legumes (Arachis pintoi and Centrosema macrocarpum) and native vegetation grown under two fertilization levels, cultivated either in monoculture or in association and harvested at four different ages were evaluated. The numbers of mycorrizal spores in the soil

  12. A Systematic Review of Perennial Staple Crops Literature Using Topic Modeling and Bibliometric Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Research on perennial staple crops has increased in the past ten years due to their potential to improve ecosystem services in agricultural systems. However, multiple past breeding efforts as well as research on traditional ratoon systems mean there is already a broad body of literature on perennial crops. In this review, we compare the development of research on perennial staple crops, including wheat, rice, rye, sorghum, and pigeon pea. We utilized the advanced search capabilities of Web of Science, Scopus, ScienceDirect, and Agricola to gather a library of 914 articles published from 1930 to the present. We analyzed the metadata in the entire library and in collections of literature on each crop to understand trends in research and publishing. In addition, we applied topic modeling to the article abstracts, a type of text analysis that identifies frequently co-occurring terms and latent topics. We found: 1.) Research on perennials is increasing overall, but individual crops have each seen periods of heightened interest and research activity; 2.) Specialist journals play an important role in supporting early research efforts. Research often begins within communities of specialists or breeders for the individual crop before transitioning to a more general scientific audience; 3.) Existing perennial agricultural systems and their domesticated crop material, such as ratoon rice systems, can provide a useful foundation for breeding efforts, accelerating the development of truly perennial crops and farming systems; 4.) Primary research is lacking for crops that are produced on a smaller scale globally, such as pigeon pea and sorghum, and on the ecosystem service benefits of perennial agricultural systems. PMID:27213283

  13. Utilization of 15N in the sequence of mineral fertilizer - forage - animal - slurry - forage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peschke, H.

    1981-01-01

    After systematic application of 15 N-ammonium nitrate, the change of the dinuclidic composition and 15 N quantity was studied by isotope analysis of several open systems in the sequence mineral fertilizer - (soil) - forage - (animal) - slurry - (soil) - forage. The relative 15 N isotope frequency of 50 atom% in the mineral fertilizer declined to 12.2 to 21.4 atom% in the forage (beet, oats, hay) and went down to 3.15 atom% in the slurry of a dairy cow fed on this forage. Silage maize manured with the slurry of the dairy cow only showed 1.98 atom %, green oats grown after the silage maize on the same area was found to have 0.45 atom%. The 15 N quantity of 104.5 g N in the fertilizer gradually decreased to 41.6 g N in the forage, 30.5 g N in the slurry and 22.6 g N in the silage maize. The causes discussed are 15 N isotope dilution as qualitative factor and productive and unproductive N losses as quantitative factors. (author)

  14. The Performance of Early-Generation Perennial Winter Cereals at 21 Sites across Four Continents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard C. Hayes

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available A network of 21 experiments was established across nine countries on four continents and spanning both hemispheres, to evaluate the relative performance of early generation perennial cereal material derived from wheat, rye, and barley and to inform future breeding strategies. The experimental lines were grown in replicated single rows, and first year production and phenology characteristics as well as yield and persistence for up to three years were monitored. The study showed that the existing experimental material is all relatively short-lived (≤3 years, with environments that are milder in summer and winter generally conferring greater longevity. No pedigree was superior across this diverse network of sites although better performing lines at the higher latitude sites were generally derived from Thinopyrum intermedium. By contrast, at lower latitudes the superior lines were generally derived from Th. ponticum and Th. elongatum parentage. The study observed a poor relationship between year 1 performance and productivity in later years, highlighting the need for perennial cereal material with greater longevity to underpin future experimental evaluation, and the importance for breeding programs to emphasize post-year 1 performance in their selections. Hybrid lines derived from the tetraploid durum wheat generally showed greater longevity than derivatives of hexaploid wheat, highlighting potential for greater use of Triticum turgidum in perennial wheat breeding. We advocate a model in future breeding initiatives that develops perennial cereal genotypes for specific target environments rather than a generic product for one global market. These products may include a diversity of cultivars derived from locally adapted annual and perennial parents. In this scenario the breeding program may have access to only a limited range of adapted perennial grass parents. In other situations, such as at very high latitude environments, perennial crops derived

  15. Root proliferation in native perennial grasses of arid Patagonia, Argentina

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yanina A. TORRES; Mara M. MUJICA; Sandra S. BAIONI; Jos ENTO; Mara N. FIORETTI; Guillermo TUCAT; Carlos A. BUSSO; Oscar A. MONTENEGRO; Leticia ITHURRART; Hugo D. GIORGETTI; Gustavo RODRGUEZ; Diego BENTIVEGNA; Roberto E. BREVEDAN; Osvaldo A. FERNNDEZ

    2014-01-01

    Pappophorum vaginatum is the most abundant C4 perennial grass desirable to livestock in rangelands of northeastern Patagonia, Argentina. We hypothesized that (1) defoliation reduce net primary productivity, and root length density and weight in the native species, and (2) root net primary productivity, and root length density and weight, are greater in P. vaginatum than in the other, less desirable, native species (i.e., Aristida spegazzinii, A. subulata and Sporobolus cryptandrus). Plants of all species were either exposed or not to a severe defoliation twice a year during two growing seasons. Root proliferation was measured using the cylinder method. Cylindrical, iron structures, wrapped up using nylon mesh, were buried diagonally from the periphery to the center on individual plants. These structures, initially filled with soil without any organic residue, were dug up from the soil on 25 April 2008, after two successive defoliations in mid-spring 2007. During the second growing season (2008-2009), cylinders were destructively harvested on 4 April 2009, after one or two defoliations in mid-and/or late-spring, respectively. Roots grown into the cylinders were obtained after washing the soil manually. Defoliation during two successive years did reduce the study variables only after plants of all species were defoliated twice, which supported the first hypothesis. The greater root net primary productivity, root length den-sity and weight in P. vaginatum than in the other native species, in support of the second hypothesis, could help to explain its greater abundance in rangelands of Argentina.

  16. Foraging ecology of least terns and piping plovers nesting on Central Platte River sandpits and sandbars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherfy, Mark H.; Anteau, Michael J.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Sovada, Marsha A.; Stucker, Jennifer H.

    2012-01-01

    Federally listed least terns (Sternula antillarum) and piping plovers (Charadrius melodus) nest on riverine sandbars on many major midcontinent river systems. On the Central Platte River, availability of sandbar habitat is limited, and both species nest on excavated sandpits in the river's floodplain. However, the extent to which sandpit-nesting birds use riverine habitats for foraging is unknown. We evaluated use of foraging habitats by least terns and piping plovers by collecting data on movements, behavior, foraging habitat, and productivity. We radiomarked 16 piping plovers and 23 least terns in 2009-2010 and monitored their movements using a network of fixed telemetry dataloggers. Piping plovers were detected primarily by the datalogger located in their nesting sandpit, whereas least terns were more frequently detected on dataloggers outside of the nesting sandpit. Telemetry data and behavioral observations showed that least terns tended to concentrate at the Kearney Canal Diversion Gates, where forage fish were apparently readily available. Fish sampling data suggested that forage fish were more abundant in riverine than in sandpit habitats, and behavioral observations showed that least terns foraged more frequently in riverine than in sandpit habitats. Piping plovers tended to forage in wet substrates along sandpit shorelines, but also used dry substrates and sandpit interior habitats. The greater mobility of least terns makes a wider range of potential foraging habitats available during brood rearing, making them able to exploit concentrations of fish outside the nesting colony. Thus, our data suggest that different spatial scales should be considered in managing nesting and foraging habitat complexes for piping plovers and least terns.

  17. Adaptive Bacterial Foraging Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanning Chen

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial Foraging Optimization (BFO is a recently developed nature-inspired optimization algorithm, which is based on the foraging behavior of E. coli bacteria. Up to now, BFO has been applied successfully to some engineering problems due to its simplicity and ease of implementation. However, BFO possesses a poor convergence behavior over complex optimization problems as compared to other nature-inspired optimization techniques. This paper first analyzes how the run-length unit parameter of BFO controls the exploration of the whole search space and the exploitation of the promising areas. Then it presents a variation on the original BFO, called the adaptive bacterial foraging optimization (ABFO, employing the adaptive foraging strategies to improve the performance of the original BFO. This improvement is achieved by enabling the bacterial foraging algorithm to adjust the run-length unit parameter dynamically during algorithm execution in order to balance the exploration/exploitation tradeoff. The experiments compare the performance of two versions of ABFO with the original BFO, the standard particle swarm optimization (PSO and a real-coded genetic algorithm (GA on four widely-used benchmark functions. The proposed ABFO shows a marked improvement in performance over the original BFO and appears to be comparable with the PSO and GA.

  18. Genetics and biology of cytoplasmic male sterility (CMS) and its applications in forage and turf grass breeding

    OpenAIRE

    Islam Mohamed Shofiqul; Studer Bruno; Møller Ian Max; Asp Torben

    2014-01-01

    Hybrid breeding can exploit heterosis and thus offers opportunities to maximize yield quality and resistance traits in crop species. Cytoplasmic male sterility (CMS) is a widely applied tool for efficient hybrid seed production. Encoded in the mitochondrial genome CMS is maternally inherited and thus it can be challenging to apply in breeding schemes of allogamous self incompatible plant species such as perennial ryegrass. Starting with a general introduction to the origin and the function of...

  19. Foraging flight distances of wintering ducks and geese: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William P. Johnson

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The distance covered by foraging animals, especially those that radiate from a central area when foraging, may affect ecosystem, community, and population dynamics, and has conservation and landscape planning implications for multiple taxa, including migratory waterfowl. Migrating and wintering waterfowl make regular foraging flights between roosting and feeding areas that can greatly impact energetic resources within the foraging zone near roost sites. We reviewed published studies and gray literature for one-way foraging flight distances (FFDs of migrating and wintering dabbling ducks and geese. Thirty reviewed studies reported FFDs and several reported values for multiple species or locations. We obtained FFD values for migration (n = 7 and winter (n = 70. We evaluated the effects of body mass, guild, i.e., dabbling duck or goose, and location, i.e., Nearctic or Palearctic, on FFDs. We used the second-order Akaike's Information Criterion for model selection. We found support for effects of location and guild on FFDs. FFDs of waterfowl wintering in the Nearctic (7.4 ± 6.7 km, mean ± SD; n = 39 values were longer than in the Palearctic (4.2 ± 3.2 km; n = 31 values. The FFDs of geese (7.8 ± 7.2 km, mean ± SD; n = 24 values were longer than FFDs of dabbling ducks (5.1 ± 4.4 km, mean ± SD; n = 46 values. We found mixed evidence that distance flown from the roost changed, i.e., increased or decreased, seasonally. Our results can be used to refine estimates of energetic carrying capacity around roosts and in biological and landscape planning efforts.

  20. Direct control of perennial weeds between crops - Implication for organic farming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Melander, Bo; Holst, Niels; Rasmussen, Ilse Ankjær

    2012-01-01

    and ending the strategy with mouldboard ploughing in the succeeding spring. Grain yields did not differ among the treatments in the two experiments as a result of the generally high effectiveness exerted by the control strategies. Especially post-harvest control strategies based on rotating weed devices...... and mouldboard ploughing appear to be effective solutions against mixed stands of perennials on sandy soils but they do not comply with optimal nutrient management in organic cropping. Therefore, intensive autumn cultivation is only relevant where a perennial weed problem is uncontrollable by other means.......Perennial weeds can be a major constraint to organic crop production and direct control actions applied between crops can then be necessary to reduce the problems. We conducted two experiments, one on a sandy loam and one on a sandy soil in Denmark, with the aim of studying the efficacy...

  1. Season and landscape composition affect pollen foraging distances and habitat use of honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danner, Nadja; Molitor, Anna Maria; Schiele, Susanne; Härtel, Stephan; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf

    2016-09-01

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) show a large variation in foraging distances and use a broad range of plant species as pollen resources, even in regions with intensive agriculture. However, it is unknown how increasing areas of mass-flowering crops like oilseed rape (Brassica napus; OSR) or a decrease of seminatural habitats (SNH) change the temporal and spatial availability of pollen resources for honey bee colonies, and thus foraging distances and frequency in different habitat types. We studied pollen foraging of honey bee colonies in 16 agricultural landscapes with independent gradients of OSR and SNH area within 2 km and used waggle dances and digital geographic maps with major land cover types to reveal the distance and visited habitat type on a landscape level. Mean pollen foraging distance of 1347 decoded bee dances was 1015 m (± 26 m; SEM). In spring, increasing area of flowering OSR within 2 km reduced mean pollen foraging distances from 1324 m to only 435 m. In summer, increasing cover of SNH areas close to the colonies (within 200 m radius) reduced mean pollen foraging distances from 846 to 469 m. Frequency of pollen foragers per habitat type, measured as the number of dances per hour and hectare, was equally high for SNH, grassland, and OSR fields, but lower for other crops and forests. In landscapes with a small proportion of SNH a significantly higher density of pollen foragers on SNH was observed, indicating that pollen resources in such simple agricultural landscapes are more limited. Overall, we conclude that SNH and mass-flowering crops can reduce foraging distances of honey bee colonies at different scales and seasons with possible benefits for the performance of honey bee colonies. Further, mixed agricultural landscapes with a high proportion of SNH reduce foraging densities of honey bees in SNH and thus possible competition for pollen resources. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  2. Energy balance and cost-benefit analysis of biogas production from perennial energy crops pretreated by wet oxidation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Uellendahl, Hinrich; Wang, Guangtao; Møller, Henrik B.

    2008-01-01

    Perennial crops need far less energy to plant, require less fertilizer and pesticides, and show a lower negative environmental impact compared with annual crops like for example corn. This makes the cultivation of perennial crops as energy crops more sustainable than the use of annual crops....... The conversion into biogas in anaerobic digestion plants shows however much lower specific methane yields for the raw perennial crops like miscanthus and willow due to their lignocellulosic structure. Without pretreatment the net energy gain is therefore lower for the perennials than for corn. When applying wet...... oxidation to the perennial crops, however, the specific methane yield increases significantly and the ratio of energy output to input and of costs to benefit for the whole chain of biomass supply and conversion into biogas becomes higher than for corn. This will make the use of perennial crops as energy...

  3. Evidence of trapline foraging in honeybees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buatois, Alexis; Lihoreau, Mathieu

    2016-08-15

    Central-place foragers exploiting floral resources often use multi-destination routes (traplines) to maximise their foraging efficiency. Recent studies on bumblebees have showed how solitary foragers can learn traplines, minimising travel costs between multiple replenishing feeding locations. Here we demonstrate a similar routing strategy in the honeybee (Apis mellifera), a major pollinator known to recruit nestmates to discovered food resources. Individual honeybees trained to collect sucrose solution from four artificial flowers arranged within 10 m of the hive location developed repeatable visitation sequences both in the laboratory and in the field. A 10-fold increase of between-flower distances considerably intensified this routing behaviour, with bees establishing more stable and more efficient routes at larger spatial scales. In these advanced social insects, trapline foraging may complement cooperative foraging for exploiting food resources near the hive (where dance recruitment is not used) or when resources are not large enough to sustain multiple foragers at once. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  4. Root growth of perennials in vertical growing media for use in green walls

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Lars; Dresbøll, Dorte Bodin; Thorup-Kristensen, Kristian

    2014-01-01

    The vertical orientation of green walls causes a risk of uneven water distribution within the growing medium, and thereby stress on the plant roots. Therefore it was studied how the root and top growth of different species were affected by the water holding characteristics of the growing media....... Five species of hardy perennials (Campanula poscharskyana ‘Stella’, Fragaria vesca ‘Småland’, Geranium sanguineum ‘Max Frei’, Sesleria heufleriana and Veronica officinalis ‘Allgrün’) were grown in 3 types of growing media (coir and 2 of rockwool) in vertical boxes under greenhouse conditions. Root...... distribution was registered over 52 days and the activity of individual root systems was studied via 15N uptake and plant parameters were measured. The water holding characteristics of the growing media was determined on a sandbox. From day 21 and throughout the experiment, the plants growing in the coir...

  5. Species invasion shifts the importance of predator dependence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Delaney, David G

    2007-12-01

    The strength of interference between foraging individuals can influence per capita consumption rates, with important consequences for predator and prey populations and system stability. Here we demonstrate how the replacement of a previously established invader, the predatory crab Carcinus maenas, by the recently invading predatory crab Hemigrapsus sanguineus shifts predation from a species that experiences strong predator interference (strong predator dependence) to one that experiences weak predator interference (weak predator dependence). We demonstrate using field experiments that differences in the strength of predator dependence persist for these species both when they forage on a single focal prey species only (the mussel Mytilus edulis) and when they forage more broadly across the entire prey community. This shift in predator dependence with species replacement may be altering the biomass across trophic levels, consistent with theoretical predictions, as we show that H. sanguineus populations are much larger than C. maenas populations throughout their invaded ranges. Our study highlights that predator dependence may differ among predator species and demonstrates that different predatory impacts of two conspicuous invasive predators may be explained at least in part by different strengths of predator dependence.

  6. 50 CFR 15.32 - Criteria for including species in the approved list for non-captive-bred species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... Management and Scientific Authorities transmitting the management plan of this species; (iii) A summary of... where the species forages (aerial feeder, tree canopy, tree trunk, midstory, understory, open water or..., disease carrier; a description of the damage the pest species causes to its ecosystem; and a description...

  7. Visual Foraging With Fingers and Eye Gaze

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ómar I. Jóhannesson

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A popular model of the function of selective visual attention involves search where a single target is to be found among distractors. For many scenarios, a more realistic model involves search for multiple targets of various types, since natural tasks typically do not involve a single target. Here we present results from a novel multiple-target foraging paradigm. We compare finger foraging where observers cancel a set of predesignated targets by tapping them, to gaze foraging where observers cancel items by fixating them for 100 ms. During finger foraging, for most observers, there was a large difference between foraging based on a single feature, where observers switch easily between target types, and foraging based on a conjunction of features where observers tended to stick to one target type. The pattern was notably different during gaze foraging where these condition differences were smaller. Two conclusions follow: (a The fact that a sizeable number of observers (in particular during gaze foraging had little trouble switching between different target types raises challenges for many prominent theoretical accounts of visual attention and working memory. (b While caveats must be noted for the comparison of gaze and finger foraging, the results suggest that selection mechanisms for gaze and pointing have different operational constraints.

  8. Growth and nutritional evaluation of napier grass hybrids as forage for ruminants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian Turano

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Napier grass is a perennial, tropical C-4 grass that can produce large amounts of forage. However, low temperatures and drought stress limit its productivity and nutritive value as a forage. To overcome these limitations, pearl millet × napier grass hybrids (PMN were developed. It was hypothesized that PMN hybrids were more drought-tolerant, produced higher yields, and had higher nutritive value than napier grass varieties. The yield and nutritive value of 4 napier grass varieties (Bana grass, Mott, MB4 and N51 and 4 PMN hybrids (PMN2, PMN3, 5344 and 4604 were determined with or without irrigation in a strip plot design in Hawaii. Hybrid PMN3 outperformed napier grass varieties and the other hybrids for yield, while 5344 showed higher nutritional content and digestibility than most other grasses. Dry matter yields during the 110-day study period ranged from 10.3 to 32.1 t/ha without irrigation and 19.6 to 55.8 t/ha with irrigation, indicating that moisture stress was limiting performance in raingrown pastures. Only hybrids PMN3 and PMN2 and variety MB4 showed significant growth responses to irrigation. Further work is needed to evaluate the hybrids in a range of environments over much longer periods to determine if these preliminary results can be reproduced over the long term. Similarly, feeding studies with animals are needed to determine if the in vitro data for digestibility are reflected in superior performance for the promising hybrids.Keywords: Biomass, cattle, in vitro digestion, nutrient content, Pennisetum, tropical grasses.DOI: 10.17138/TGFT(4168-178

  9. A generic model for estimating biomass accumulation and greenhouse gas emissions from perennial crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledo, Alicia; Heathcote, Richard; Hastings, Astley; Smith, Pete; Hillier, Jonathan

    2017-04-01

    Agriculture is essential to maintain humankind but is, at the same time, a substantial emitter of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. With a rising global population, the need for agriculture to provide secure food and energy supply is one of the main human challenges. At the same time, it is the only sector which has significant potential for negative emissions through the sequestration of carbon and offsetting via supply of feedstock for energy production. Perennial crops accumulate carbon during their lifetime and enhance organic soil carbon increase via root senescence and decomposition. However, inconsistency in accounting for this stored biomass undermines efforts to assess the benefits of such cropping systems when applied at scale. A consequence of this exclusion is that efforts to manage this important carbon stock are neglected. Detailed information on carbon balance is crucial to identify the main processes responsible for greenhouse gas emissions in order to develop strategic mitigation programs. Perennial crops systems represent 30% in area of total global crop systems, a considerable amount to be ignored. Furthermore, they have a major standing both in the bioenergy and global food industries. In this study, we first present a generic model to calculate the carbon balance and GHGs emissions from perennial crops, covering both food and bioenergy crops. The model is composed of two simple process-based sub-models, to cover perennial grasses and other perennial woody plants. The first is a generic individual based sub-model (IBM) covering crops in which the yield is the fruit and the plant biomass is an unharvested residue. Trees, shrubs and climbers fall into this category. The second model is a generic area based sub-model (ABM) covering perennial grasses, in which the harvested part includes some of the plant parts in which the carbon storage is accounted. Most second generation perennial bioenergy crops fall into this category. Both generic sub

  10. Nutritive value, fermentation characteristics, and in situ disappearance kinetics of ensiled warm-season legumes and bahiagrass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, J L; Carter, J N; Sollenberger, L E; Blount, A R; Myer, R O; Maddox, M K; Phatak, S C; Adesogan, A T

    2011-04-01

    This study determined the nutritive value, ensiling characteristics, and in situ disappearance kinetics of bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Flügge 'Tifton 9'), perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth. 'Florigraze'), annual peanut [Arachis hypogaea (L.) 'FL MDR 98'], cowpea [Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp. 'Iron clay'], and pigeonpea [Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp. 'GA-2']. All forages were harvested at maturity stages that optimized dry matter (DM) yield and nutritive value. After harvest, forages were wilted to 45% DM, and 4 replicate bales of each legume and 8 bales of bahiagrass were wrapped in polyethylene and ensiled for 180 d. After each bale was opened, the forage was thoroughly mixed, and representative subsamples were taken for laboratory analysis and in situ incubation. Wilting and ensiling decreased the rumen-undegradable protein, water-soluble carbohydrate, crude protein (CP), and in vitro true digestibility (IVTD) of bahiagrass, perennial peanut, and cowpea, and increased their neutral detergent fiber (NDF) concentrations. Among haylages, CP concentration was greatest for annual peanut, followed by perennial peanut and cowpea, and least for bahiagrass. In contrast, NDF concentration was greater in bahiagrass than in legumes. Pigeonpea had the greatest NDF concentration among legumes and lowest IVTD of all haylages. All haylages were aerobically stable for at least 84 h, but pH was lower in perennial peanut and cowpea than in pigeonpea. Ammonia-N concentrations tended to be greater in legume haylages than in bahiagrass haylage. Butyrate concentration was greater in annual and perennial peanut than in bahiagrass. Total VFA concentration was greater in annual and perennial peanut and cowpea haylages than in bahiagrass haylage. Undegradable DM fractions were greater and extent of DM degradation was lower in bahiagrass and pigeonpea than in other haylages but lag time and degradation rates did not differ. Annual and perennial peanut and cowpea haylages were as

  11. Effects of tidal cycles on shorebird distribution and foraging behaviour in a coastal tropical wetland: Insights for carrying capacity assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonseca, Juanita; Basso, Enzo; Serrano, David; Navedo, Juan G.

    2017-11-01

    Wetland loss has driven negative effects on biodiversity by a reduction in potential available habitats, directly impacting wetland-dependent species such as migratory shorebirds. At coastal areas where tidal cycles can restrict food access, the degree to which density of foraging birds is mediated by conspecific abundance or by the available areas is crucial to understanding patterns of bird distribution and wetland carrying capacity. We used the bathymetry of two sectors modeled with two numerical matrices to determine the availability of intertidal foraging areas in relation to tidal level (spring and neap tides), and this information was used to estimate shorebird density and foraging activity throughout the low-tide cycle in a tropical coastal lagoon in northwestern Mexico. Relative to spring tides, an 80% reduction in available foraging areas occurred during neap tides. Overall shorebird abundance was significantly reduced during neap tide periods, with differences between species. Densities of shorebirds increased during neap tides, particularly in one sector, and remained similar throughout the low-tide period (i.e. 4 h) either during spring or neap tides. Time spent foraging was consistently lower during neap-tides relative to spring-tides, especially for Long-billed curlew (44% reduction), Willet (37% reduction) and Black-necked stilt (29% reduction). These decreases in foraging activity when available habitats became reduced can hamper the opportunities of migratory shorebirds to reach their daily energy requirements to survive during the non-breeding season. This study shows that when intertidal habitats are severely reduced an important fraction of shorebird populations would probably be forced to find alternative areas to forage or increase foraging time during the night. Serving an essential function as top-predators, these results can have important implications on carrying capacity assessment for shorebirds at coastal wetlands.

  12. High quality reference genome of drumstick tree (Moringa oleifera Lam.), a potential perennial crop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Yang; Zeng, Yan; Zhang, Jing; Yang, ChengGuang; Yan, Liang; Wang, XuanJun; Shi, ChongYing; Xie, Jing; Dai, TianYi; Peng, Lei; Zeng Huan, Yu; Xu, AnNi; Huang, YeWei; Zhang, JiaJin; Ma, Xiao; Dong, Yang; Hao, ShuMei; Sheng, Jun

    2015-07-01

    The drumstick tree (Moringa oleifera Lam.) is a perennial crop that has gained popularity in certain developing countries for its high-nutrition content and adaptability to arid and semi-arid environments. Here we report a high-quality draft genome sequence of M. oleifera. This assembly represents 91.78% of the estimated genome size and contains 19,465 protein-coding genes. Comparative genomic analysis between M. oleifera and related woody plant genomes helps clarify the general evolution of this species, while the identification of several species-specific gene families and positively selected genes in M. oleifera may help identify genes related to M. oleifera's high protein content, fast-growth, heat and stress tolerance. This reference genome greatly extends the basic research on M. oleifera, and may further promote applying genomics to enhanced breeding and improvement of M. oleifera.

  13. Roosting and foraging social structure of the endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Silvis

    Full Text Available Social dynamics are an important but poorly understood aspect of bat ecology. Herein we use a combination of graph theoretic and spatial approaches to describe the roost and social network characteristics and foraging associations of an Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis maternity colony in an agricultural landscape in Ohio, USA. We tracked 46 bats to 50 roosts (423 total relocations and collected 2,306 foraging locations for 40 bats during the summers of 2009 and 2010. We found the colony roosting network was highly centralized in both years and that roost and social networks differed significantly from random networks. Roost and social network structure also differed substantially between years. Social network structure appeared to be unrelated to segregation of roosts between age classes. For bats whose individual foraging ranges were calculated, many shared foraging space with at least one other bat. Compared across all possible bat dyads, 47% and 43% of the dyads showed more than expected overlap of foraging areas in 2009 and 2010 respectively. Colony roosting area differed between years, but the roosting area centroid shifted only 332 m. In contrast, whole colony foraging area use was similar between years. Random roost removal simulations suggest that Indiana bat colonies may be robust to loss of a limited number of roosts but may respond differently from year to year. Our study emphasizes the utility of graphic theoretic and spatial approaches for examining the sociality and roosting behavior of bats. Detailed knowledge of the relationships between social and spatial aspects of bat ecology could greatly increase conservation effectiveness by allowing more structured approaches to roost and habitat retention for tree-roosting, socially-aggregating bat species.

  14. Summing the strokes: energy economy in northern elephant seals during large-scale foraging migrations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maresh, J L; Adachi, T; Takahashi, A; Naito, Y; Crocker, D E; Horning, M; Williams, T M; Costa, D P

    2015-01-01

    The energy requirements of free-ranging marine mammals are challenging to measure due to cryptic and far-ranging feeding habits, but are important to quantify given the potential impacts of high-level predators on ecosystems. Given their large body size and carnivorous lifestyle, we would predict that northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) have elevated field metabolic rates (FMRs) that require high prey intake rates, especially during pregnancy. Disturbance associated with climate change or human activity is predicted to further elevate energy requirements due to an increase in locomotor costs required to accommodate a reduction in prey or time available to forage. In this study, we determined the FMRs, total energy requirements, and energy budgets of adult, female northern elephant seals. We also examined the impact of increased locomotor costs on foraging success in this species. Body size, time spent at sea and reproductive status strongly influenced FMR. During the short foraging migration, FMR averaged 90.1 (SE = 1.7) kJ kg(-1)d(-1) - only 36 % greater than predicted basal metabolic rate. During the long migration, when seals were pregnant, FMRs averaged 69.4 (±3.0) kJ kg(-1)d(-1) - values approaching those predicted to be necessary to support basal metabolism in mammals of this size. Low FMRs in pregnant seals were driven by hypometabolism coupled with a positive feedback loop between improving body condition and reduced flipper stroking frequency. In contrast, three additional seals carrying large, non-streamlined instrumentation saw a four-fold increase in energy partitioned toward locomotion, resulting in elevated FMRs and only half the mass gain of normally-swimming study animals. These results highlight the importance of keeping locomotion costs low for successful foraging in this species. In preparation for lactation and two fasting periods with high demands on energy reserves, migrating elephant seals utilize an economical foraging

  15. Neutron activation analysis application for determining iron concentration in forage grasses used in intensive cattle production system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Armelin, Maria Jose A.; Primavesi, Odo

    2002-01-01

    Iron is an essential element to the life. It is an important hemoglobin component and it is involved in the transport of oxygen to cells. A deficiency of iron results in an unsuitable synthesis of hemoglobin and a delay in the growth. Iron contents above the tolerable level in animal feed can cause serious damages to the health and the death in extreme cases. The forages are the main source of feed to cattle in grazing. It is known from the literature, that the growth and the nutritious value of the forage are influenced by specie and physiologic age of the plant, soil fertility and environmental conditions. Therefore, an agronomical evaluations of the forages are necessary before to introduce in an intensive cattle production systems to program adequate grazing management. Neutron activation analysis was applied to evaluate the Fe concentration in the main tropical forage grasses used in intensive dairy cattle production systems in Sao Carlos, SP, Brazil. Iron concentrations were smaller in the rain season than in the dry one. Comparison of results obtained in the analyses of forages with daily requirements of iron in dry matter, showed that the Fe concentration in forages was adequate. (author)

  16. Potential phytoextraction and phytostabilization of perennial peanut on copper-contaminated vineyard soils and copper mining waste.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andreazza, Robson; Bortolon, Leandro; Pieniz, Simone; Giacometti, Marcelo; Roehrs, Dione D; Lambais, Mácio R; Camargo, Flávio A O

    2011-12-01

    This study sought to evaluate the potential of perennial peanut (Arachis pintoi) for copper phytoremediation in vineyard soils (Inceptisol and Mollisol) contaminated with copper and copper mining waste. Our results showed high phytomass production of perennial peanut in both vineyard soils. Macronutrient uptakes were not negatively affected by perennial peanut cultivated in all contaminated soils. Plants cultivated in Mollisol showed high copper concentrations in the roots and shoots of 475 and 52 mg kg(-1), respectively. Perennial peanut plants showed low translocation factor values for Cu, although these plants showed high bioaccumulation factor (BCF) for both vineyard soils, Inceptisol and Mollisol, with BCF values of 3.83 and 3.24, respectively, being characterized as a copper hyperaccumulator plant in these soils. Copper phytoextraction from Inceptisol soil was the highest for both roots and entire plant biomass, with more than 800 mg kg(-1) of copper in whole plant. The highest potential copper phytoextraction by perennial peanut was in Inceptisol soil with copper removal of 2,500 g ha(-1). Also, perennial peanut showed high potential for copper phytoremoval in copper mining waste and Mollisol with 1,700 and 1,500 g of copper per hectare, respectively. In addition, perennial peanuts characterized high potential for phytoextraction and phytostabilization of copper in vineyard soils and copper mining waste.

  17. Temporal and Spatial Foraging Behavior of the Larvae of the Fall Webworm Hyphantria cunea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terrence D. Fitzgerald

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available During their first three larval stadia, caterpillars of Hyphantria cunea (Lepidoptera: Arctiidae are patch-restricted foragers, confining their activity to a web-nest they construct in the branches of the host tree. Activity recordings of eight field colonies made over 46 colony-days showed that the later instars become central place foragers, leaving their nests at dusk to feed at distant sites and then returning to their nests in the morning. Colonies maintained in the laboratory showed that same pattern of foraging. In Y-choice laboratory experiments, caterpillars were slow to abandon old, exhausted feeding sites in favor of new food finds. An average of approximately 40% of the caterpillars in five colonies still selected pathways leading to exhausted sites at the onset of foraging bouts over those leading to new sites after feeding exclusively at the new sites on each of the previous four days. On returning to their nests in the morning, approximately 23% of the caterpillars erred by selecting pathways that led them away from the nest rather than toward it and showed no improvement over the course of the study. The results of these Y-choice studies indicate that, compared to other previously studied species of social caterpillars, the webworm employs a relatively simple system of collective foraging.

  18. Best practices for assessing forage fish fisheries-seabird resource competition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydeman, William J.; Thompson, Sarah Ann; Anker-Nilssen, Tycho; Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Bennison, Ashley; Bertrand, Sophie; Boersch-Supan, Philipp; Boyd, Charlotte; Bransome, Nicole C.; Crawford, Robert J.M.; Daunt, Francis; Furness, Robert W.; Gianuca, Dimas; Gladics, Amanda; Koehn, Laura; Lang, Jennifer W.; Loggerwell, Elizabeth; Morris, Taryn L.; Phillips, Elizabeth M.; Provencher, Jennifer; Punt, André E..; Saraux, Claire; Shannon, Lynne; Sherley, Richard B.; Simeone, Alejandro; Wanless, Ross M.; Wanless, Sarah; Zador, Stephani

    2017-01-01

    Worldwide, in recent years capture fisheries targeting lower-trophic level forage fish and euphausiid crustaceans have been substantial (∼20 million metric tons [MT] annually). Landings of forage species are projected to increase in the future, and this harvest may affect marine ecosystems and predator-prey interactions by removal or redistribution of biomass central to pelagic food webs. In particular, fisheries targeting forage fish and euphausiids may be in competition with seabirds, likely the most sensitive of marine vertebrates given limitations in their foraging abilities (ambit and gape size) and high metabolic rate, for food resources. Lately, apparent competition between fisheries and seabirds has led to numerous high-profile conflicts over interpretations, as well as the approaches that could and should be used to assess the magnitude and consequences of fisheries-seabird resource competition. In this paper, we review the methods used to date to study fisheries competition with seabirds, and present “best practices” for future resource competition assessments. Documenting current fisheries competition with seabirds generally involves addressing two major issues: 1) are fisheries causing localized prey depletion that is sufficient to affect the birds? (i.e., are fisheries limiting food resources?), and 2) how are fisheries-induced changes to forage stocks affecting seabird populations given the associated functional or numerical response relationships? Previous studies have been hampered by mismatches in the scale of fisheries, fish, and seabird data, and a lack of causal understanding due to confounding by climatic and other ecosystem factors (e.g., removal of predatory fish). Best practices for fisheries-seabird competition research should include i) clear articulation of hypotheses, ii) data collection (or summation) of fisheries, fish, and seabirds on matched spatio-temporal scales, and iii) integration of observational and experimental

  19. Habitat and forage associations of a naturally colonising insect pollinator, the Tree Bumblebee Bombus hypnorum

    OpenAIRE

    Crowther, Liam P.; Hein, Pierre-Louis; Bourke, Andrew F. G.

    2014-01-01

    Bumblebees (Bombus species) are major pollinators of commercial crops and wildflowers but factors affecting their abundance, including causes of recent population declines, remain unclear. Investigating the ecology of species with expanding ranges provides a potentially powerful means of elucidating these factors. Such species may also bring novel pollination services to their new ranges. We therefore investigated landscape-scale habitat use and foraging preferences of the Tree Bumblebee, B. ...

  20. Predation vulnerability of planktonic copepods: consequences of predator foraging strategies and prey sensory abilities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Viitasalo, M; Kiørboe, T; Flinkman, J.

    1998-01-01

    We investigated the vulnerability of 2 copepod species (Eurytemora affinis and Temora longicornis) to predation by predators with different foraging modes, three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus juveniles and mysid shrimps Neomysis integer. Copepods were videofilmed escaping from predators...

  1. Interactions Increase Forager Availability and Activity in Harvester Ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evlyn Pless

    Full Text Available Social insect colonies use interactions among workers to regulate collective behavior. Harvester ant foragers interact in a chamber just inside the nest entrance, here called the 'entrance chamber'. Previous studies of the activation of foragers in red harvester ants show that an outgoing forager inside the nest experiences an increase in brief antennal contacts before it leaves the nest to forage. Here we compare the interaction rate experienced by foragers that left the nest and ants that did not. We found that ants in the entrance chamber that leave the nest to forage experienced more interactions than ants that descend to the deeper nest without foraging. Additionally, we found that the availability of foragers in the entrance chamber is associated with the rate of forager return. An increase in the rate of forager return leads to an increase in the rate at which ants descend to the deeper nest, which then stimulates more ants to ascend into the entrance chamber. Thus a higher rate of forager return leads to more available foragers in the entrance chamber. The highest density of interactions occurs near the nest entrance and the entrances of the tunnels from the entrance chamber to the deeper nest. Local interactions with returning foragers regulate both the activation of waiting foragers and the number of foragers available to be activated.

  2. Space use and resource selection by foraging Indiana bats at the northern edge of their distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jachowski, David S.; Johnson, Joshua B.; Dobony, Christopher A.; Edwards, John W.; Ford, W. Mark

    2014-01-01

    Despite 4 decades of conservation concern, managing endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) populations remains a difficult wildlife resource issue facing natural resource managers in the eastern United States. After small signs of population recovery, the recent emergence of white-nose syndrome has led to concerns of local and/or regional extirpation of the species. Where Indiana bats persist, retaining high-quality foraging areas will be critical to meet physiological needs and ensure successful recruitment and overwinter survival. However, insight into foraging behavior has been lacking in the Northeast of the USA. We radio-tracked 12 Indiana bats over 2 summers at Fort Drum, New York, to evaluate factors influencing Indiana bat resource selection during night-time foraging. We found that foraging space use decreased 2% for every 100 m increase in distance to water and 6% for every 100 m away from the forest edge. This suggests high use of riparian areas in close proximity to forest and is somewhat consistent with the species’ foraging ecology in the Midwest and upper South. Given the importance of providing access to high-quality foraging areas during the summer maternity season, Indiana bat conservation at the northern extent of the species’ range will be linked to retention of forested habitat in close proximity to riparian zones. 

  3. Guanaco’s diet and forage preferences in Nothofagus forest environments of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quinteros, C.P.; Bava, J.; Gobbi, M.E.; Defossé, G.E.

    2017-11-01

    Aim of study: Guanaco (Lama guanicoe Müller), is a South American native ungulate widely distributed in Patagonia, which in the island of Tierra del Fuego (TF), extends its habitat into Nothofagus spp. forests. Within these forests, guanacos consume lenga (Nothofagus pumilio) leaves and twigs, and other understory species. The aim of this work was to determine: 1) the spring and summer diet of free ranging guanacos, and 2) which plants, grown in the forest understory, guanacos do prefer, or avoid, in these seasons of great forage abundance. Area of study: Tierra del Fuego (Argentina), on three representative areas which combined Nothofagus forests and adjacent meadows (vegas). Material and Methods: uanacos’ diet was determined by comparing epidermal and non-epidermal plant fragments with micro-histological analyses of feces. The analysis was made from composite samples of fresh feces, collected at the seasons of maximum forage productivity (spring and summer). Main results: During spring, 48% of guanacos’ diet was composed of lenga leaves, 30% of grass-like species, 15% of grasses, and less than 7% of herbs, shrubs, and lichens. In summer, 40% of the diet was composed of grasses, 30% of lenga leaves, 25% of grass-like species and the rest corresponded to herbs, shrubs, and lichens. Within the forest understory, guanaco selected lenga leaves and twigs, grass species were consumed according to their availability (or sometimes rejected), while other herbs were not consumed at all. Research highlights: Guanacos’ consumption preference for lenga, even considering the high availability of other forages, could adversely affect forest regeneration.

  4. Guanaco’s diet and forage preferences in Nothofagus forest environments of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Quinteros, C.P.; Bava, J.; Gobbi, M.E.; Defossé, G.E.

    2017-01-01

    Aim of study: Guanaco (Lama guanicoe Müller), is a South American native ungulate widely distributed in Patagonia, which in the island of Tierra del Fuego (TF), extends its habitat into Nothofagus spp. forests. Within these forests, guanacos consume lenga (Nothofagus pumilio) leaves and twigs, and other understory species. The aim of this work was to determine: 1) the spring and summer diet of free ranging guanacos, and 2) which plants, grown in the forest understory, guanacos do prefer, or avoid, in these seasons of great forage abundance. Area of study: Tierra del Fuego (Argentina), on three representative areas which combined Nothofagus forests and adjacent meadows (vegas). Material and Methods: uanacos’ diet was determined by comparing epidermal and non-epidermal plant fragments with micro-histological analyses of feces. The analysis was made from composite samples of fresh feces, collected at the seasons of maximum forage productivity (spring and summer). Main results: During spring, 48% of guanacos’ diet was composed of lenga leaves, 30% of grass-like species, 15% of grasses, and less than 7% of herbs, shrubs, and lichens. In summer, 40% of the diet was composed of grasses, 30% of lenga leaves, 25% of grass-like species and the rest corresponded to herbs, shrubs, and lichens. Within the forest understory, guanaco selected lenga leaves and twigs, grass species were consumed according to their availability (or sometimes rejected), while other herbs were not consumed at all. Research highlights: Guanacos’ consumption preference for lenga, even considering the high availability of other forages, could adversely affect forest regeneration.

  5. Dispersal, dormancy and life-history tradeoffs at the individual, population and species levels in southern African Asteraceae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Waal, Caroli; Anderson, Bruce; Ellis, Allan G

    2016-04-01

    Dispersal and dormancy are important risk-reducing strategies in unpredictable environments. Negative covariation between these strategies is theoretically expected, but empirical evidence is limited and inconsistent. Moreover, covariation may be affected by other life-history traits and may vary across levels of biological organization. We assessed dispersal (vertical fall time of fruits, a proxy for wind dispersal ability) and dormancy (germination fractions measured during germination trials) in populations of 15 annual and 12 perennial wind-dispersed species in six Asteraceae genera from South Africa. Dormancy was higher in annuals than in perennials, whereas fall time was largely determined by evolutionary history. Controlling for phylogeny, dispersal and dormancy was negatively associated across species and life-history categories. Negative covariation between dispersal and dormancy was not evident at either the individual level (except for seed heteromorphic species) or the population level. Our study provides rare empirical support for the theoretical expectation of tradeoffs between dormancy and the alternative risk-reducing strategies, perenniality and dispersal, but refutes the expectation of increased dispersability in perennials. Although negative covariation between dispersal and dormancy at the species level appears not to be a simple consequence of upscaling individual-level mechanistic tradeoffs, our findings suggest that selection for one strategy may constrain evolution of the other. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  6. Forage-based dairying in a water-limited future: use of models to investigate farming system adaptation in southern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, D F; Dassanayake, K; Hill, J O; Cullen, B R; Lane, N

    2012-07-01

    The irrigated dairy industry in southern Australia has experienced significant restrictions in irrigation water allocations since 2005, consistent with climate change impact predictions for the region. Simulation models of pasture growth (DairyMod), crop yield (Agricultural Production Systems Simulator, APSIM), and dairy system management and production (UDDER) were used in combination to investigate a range of forage options that may be capable of sustaining dairy business profitability under restricted water-allocation scenarios in northern Victoria, Australia. A total of 23 scenarios were simulated and compared with a base farm system (100% of historical water allocations, grazed perennial ryegrass pasture with supplements; estimated operating surplus $A2,615/ha at a milk price of $A4.14/kg of milk solids). Nine simulations explored the response of the base farm to changes in stocking rate or the implementation of a double cropping rotation on 30% of farm area, or both. Five simulations explored the extreme scenario of dairying without any irrigation water. Two general responses to water restrictions were investigated in a further 9 simulations. Annual ryegrass grazed pasture, complemented by a double cropping rotation (maize grown in summer for silage, followed by either brassica forage crop and annual ryegrass for silage in winter and spring) on 30% of farm area, led to an estimated operating surplus of $A1746/ha at the same stocking rate as the base farm when calving was moved to autumn (instead of late winter, as in the base system). Estimated total irrigation water use was 2.7ML/ha compared with 5.4ML/ha for the base system. Summer-dormant perennial grass plus double cropping (30% of farm area) lifted operating surplus by a further $A100/ha if associated with autumn calving (estimated total irrigation water use 3.1ML/ha). Large shifts in the forage base of dairy farms could sustain profitability in the face of lower, and fluctuating, water allocations

  7. Disproportionate Declines in Ground-Foraging Insectivorous Birds after Mistletoe Removal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M Watson

    Full Text Available Insectivorous birds have been recognized as disproportionately sensitive to land-use intensification and habitat loss, with those species feeding primarily on the ground exhibiting some of the most dramatic declines. Altered litter inputs and availability of epigeic arthropods have been suggested to underlie reduced abundances and shrinking distributions but direct evidence is lacking. I used a patch-scale removal experiment in southern Australia to evaluate whether ground-feeding insectivores are especially vulnerable to altered litter-fall. Building on work demonstrating the importance of mistletoe litter to nutrient dynamics, litter was reduced by removing mistletoe (Loranthaceae from one set of eucalypt woodlands, responses of birds three years after mistletoe removal compared with otherwise similar control woodlands containing mistletoe. Despite not feeding on mistletoes directly, insectivores exhibited the greatest response to mistletoe removal. Among woodland residents, ground-foraging insectivores showed the most dramatic response; treatment woodlands losing an average of 37.4% of their pre-treatment species richness. Once these 19 species of ground-foraging insectivores were excluded, remaining woodland species showed no significant effect of mistletoe removal. This response reflects greater initial losses in treatment woodlands during the study (which coincided with a severe drought and double the number of species returning to control woodlands (where mistletoe numbers and litter were not manipulated post-drought. These findings support the productivity-based explanation of declining insectivores, suggesting diminished litter-fall reduced habitat quality for these birds via decreased availability of their preferred prey. In addition to altered prey availability, interactions between litter-fall and epigeic arthropods exemplify the importance of below-ground / above-ground linkages driving ecosystem function.

  8. Utilization of /sup 15/N in the sequence of mineral fertilizer - forage - animal - slurry - forage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peschke, H [Humboldt-Universitaet, Berlin (German Democratic Republic). Sektion Pflanzenproduktion

    1981-12-01

    After systematic application of /sup 15/N-ammonium nitrate, the change of the dinuclidic composition and /sup 15/N quantity was studied by isotope analysis of several open systems in the sequence mineral fertilizer - (soil) - forage - (animal) - slurry - (soil) - forage. The relative /sup 15/N isotope frequency of 50 atom% in the mineral fertilizer declined to 12.2 to 21.4 atom% in the forage (beet, oats, hay) and went down to 3.15 atom% in the slurry of a dairy cow fed on this forage. Silage maize manured with the slurry of the dairy cow only showed 1.98 atom %, green oats grown after the silage maize on the same area was found to have 0.45 atom%. The /sup 15/N quantity of 104.5 g N in the fertilizer gradually decreased to 41.6 g N in the forage, 30.5 g N in the slurry and 22.6 g N in the silage maize. The causes discussed are /sup 15/N isotope dilution as qualitative factor and productive and unproductive N losses as quantitative factors.

  9. A new way of assessing foraging behaviour at the individual level using faeces marking and satellite telemetry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Andrée Giroux

    Full Text Available Heterogeneity in foraging behaviour can profoundly influence ecological processes shaping populations. To scale-up from individual foraging behaviour to processes occurring at the population scale, one needs to sample foraging behaviour at the individual level, and over large temporal scales or during critical seasons known to influence life-history traits. We developed an innovative technique to monitor foraging behaviour at the individual level in secretive species, a technique that can be ultimately used to investigate the links between foraging behaviour and life-history traits. First, the technique used a novel approach, namely the combination of telemetry tracking and biomarking of faeces with food dyes to locate fresh signs of presence left by individuals equipped with GPS collars. Second, the technique is based on the simultaneous or successive sampling of life-history traits and individual foraging behaviour, using tracks with high probabilities of recovery of dyed faeces. We first describe our methodological approach, using a case study of a large herbivore, and then provide recommendations and guidelines for its use. Sampling single snow tracks of individuals equipped with a GPS collar was a reliable way to assess individual winter foraging behaviour in a white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus Zimmermann population. During that period, the probability of recovery of dyed faeces within the range of the collar precision was very high for single snow tracks of equipped deer (97%. Our approach is well suited to study individual foraging behaviour, and could ultimately be used to investigate the interplay between intra-population heterogeneity in foraging behaviour, life-history traits, and demographic processes.

  10. Mapping the temporary and perennial character of whole river networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Ferreras, A. M.; Barquín, J.

    2017-08-01

    Knowledge of the spatial distribution of temporary and perennial river channels in a whole catchment is important for effective integrated basin management and river biodiversity conservation. However, this information is usually not available or is incomplete. In this study, we present a statistically based methodology to classify river segments from a whole river network (Deva-Cares catchment, Northern Spain) as temporary or perennial. This method is based on an a priori classification of a subset of river segments as temporary or perennial, using field surveys and aerial images, and then running Random Forest models to predict classification membership for the rest of the river network. The independent variables and the river network were derived following a computer-based geospatial simulation of riverine landscapes. The model results show high values of overall accuracy, sensitivity, and specificity for the evaluation of the fitted model to the training and testing data set (≥0.9). The most important independent variables were catchment area, area occupied by broadleaf forest, minimum monthly precipitation in August, and average catchment elevation. The final map shows 7525 temporary river segments (1012.5 km) and 3731 perennial river segments (662.5 km). A subsequent validation of the mapping results using River Habitat Survey data and expert knowledge supported the validity of the proposed maps. We conclude that the proposed methodology is a valid method for mapping the limits of flow permanence that could substantially increase our understanding of the spatial links between terrestrial and aquatic interfaces, improving the research, management, and conservation of river biodiversity and functioning.

  11. Dynamics of initial colonization of nonconserved perennial ryegrass by anaerobic fungi in the bovine rumen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Joan E; Kingston-Smith, Alison H; Jimenez, Hugo R; Huws, Sharon A; Skøt, Kirsten P; Griffith, Gareth W; McEwan, Neil R; Theodorou, Michael K

    2008-12-01

    Anaerobic fungi (Neocallimastigales) are active degraders of fibrous plant material in the rumen. However, only limited information is available relating to how quickly they colonize ingested feed particles. The aim of this study was to determine the dynamics of initial colonization of forage by anaerobic fungi in the rumen and the impact of different postsampling wash procedures used to remove loosely associated microorganisms. Neocallimastigales-specific molecular techniques were optimized to ensure maximal coverage before application to assess the population size (quantitative PCR) and composition (automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis) of the colonizing anaerobic fungi. Colonization of perennial ryegrass (PRG) was evident within 5 min, with no consistent effect of time or wash procedure on fungal population composition. Wash procedure had no effect on population size unlike time, which had a significant effect. Colonizing fungal population size continued to increase over the incubation period after an initial lag of c. 4 min. This dynamic differs from that reported previously for rumen bacteria, where substantial colonization of PRG occurred within 5 min. The observed delay in colonization of plant material by anaerobic fungi is suggested to be primarily mediated by the time taken for fungal zoospores to locate, attach and encyst on plant material.

  12. Determinants of spatial behavior of a tropical forest seed predator: The roles of optimal foraging, dietary diversification, and home range defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palminteri, Suzanne; Powell, George V N; Peres, Carlos A

    2016-05-01

    Specialized seed predators in tropical forests may avoid seasonal food scarcity and interspecific feeding competition but may need to diversify their daily diet to limit ingestion of any given toxin. Seed predators may, therefore, adopt foraging strategies that favor dietary diversity and resource monitoring, rather than efficient energy intake, as suggested by optimal foraging theory. We tested whether fine-scale space use by a small-group-living seed predator-the bald-faced saki monkey (Pithecia irrorata)-reflected optimization of short-term foraging efficiency, maximization of daily dietary diversity, and/or responses to the threat of territorial encroachment by neighboring groups. Food patches across home ranges of five adjacent saki groups were widely spread, but areas with higher densities of stems or food species were not allocated greater feeding time. Foraging patterns-specifically, relatively long daily travel paths that bypassed available fruiting trees and relatively short feeding bouts in undepleted food patches-suggest a strategy that maximizes dietary diversification, rather than "optimal" foraging. Travel distance was unrelated to the proportion of seeds in the diet. Moreover, while taxonomically diverse, the daily diets of our study groups were no more species-rich than randomly derived diets based on co-occurring available food species. Sakis preferentially used overlapping areas of their HRs, within which adjacent groups shared many food trees, yet the density of food plants or food species in these areas was no greater than in other HR areas. The high likelihood of depletion by neighboring groups of otherwise enduring food sources may encourage monitoring of peripheral food patches in overlap areas, even if at the expense of immediate energy intake, suggesting that between-group competition is a key driver of fine-scale home range use in sakis. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.